Once Least Likely to Succeed (Ruben)

Date: 12/20/2012 
We grew up in a neighborhood up in the Midwest that was a pretty bad neighborhood. When I became a teenager, I started using drugs. I started using meth when I was 16, 15, something like that.
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Reuben: We grew up in a neighborhood up in the Midwest that was a pretty bad neighborhood. When I became a teenager, I started using drugs. I started using meth when I was 16, 15, something like that. I was having some problems in my life I really didn't know how to deal with. The only thing I really knew was violence. This night here I was going to inflict violence on myself. I was really high and really depressed so I took-- I had this .40 caliber. I remember I put one in the chamber and I stuck it to the side of my head, like this.

The gun had a hair trigger. I remember I was tapping it. A part of me said, "No I don't want to do this," but there was something very evil present there saying, "Do it." I just said to myself, "God, if you're real show yourself to me." My mother took me to church when I was a little kid and we used to sing Jesus Loves Me. I remembered that song. It started playing in my mind. I almost had a vision of me as a little kid.

In Sabbath school, we used to bang those sticks together and sing Jesus Loves Me, and I heard that in my mind. I said, "Wow." I put the gun down and I kind of fell on my bed side there and I said, "Lord," -- I just basically just prayed this crazy prayer. I told him everything that was wrong with me. I remember one day I was driving around, I kind of felt lost and I drove by this church. I'd seen Tom out there. Tom was just out there watering the flowers.

Tom: I caught a vision out of the side of my eye. This big husky guy with tattoos, walking up. He said, "Hello." I asked him if I could help him and he told me he drives by the church on occasion. Every time he goes by, he's thinking that he should stop in.

Reuben: After he showed me around the church, I was like, "Okay, man. It's nice meeting you," and this and that. I jumped in my car and I started heading down the driveway. The next thing you know, in my peripheral vision, I see him coming around the corner like Jerry Rice running a football. No, not that fast, but he was taking off after me and he says, "Hey, hey, hey! Hold on! Hold on!"

Tom: I asked him if he would like to have some Bible studies and he said, "Yes."

Reuben: He would come by the house-- We'd all start hiding the beer cans and trying to air out the weed smell. There was a presence that came with Tom that was comforting. Do you know what I mean? Even though I wasn't taking the Bible studies as serious as I should've, looking back, there was just a presence of him being there in the house that was comforting. I told Tom, I said, "Tom, you know you can't win everybody."

Tom: I looked at him and I knew. I said to him, "Reuben, I never get anybody." I said, "The Holy Spirit will do that." I kind of, in my heart, knew that the Holy Spirit was going to work on Reuben.

Reuben: Tom left the picture for a while. I think one day in my mother's house, they were watching the final events of Bible Prophecy. I watched that and I remember the scene they had the Hell fire. They were outside the city and it showed the Hell fire coming down, burning people. I remember saying to myself, "That's where I would be. Right there." After the Hell fire scene, I saw the Saints in the city and the new Jerusalem; Jesus recreating the earth. I said, "I want that to be me and my family."

There was something about the way Doug preached and things, I felt, that touched me because he's kind of like myself. He didn't grow up like that. He'd done drugs and things so I found these common grounds that I had with him. I like how he kept it real with his preaching. Pastor Rodley came to the church and I got to know him very well. We started doing some finishing studies. He wanted to make sure I understand what I was doing. He baptized me, my wife, my brother. No matter what you've done, where you come from, where you've been, no matter how bad of a sinner you think you are, the Lord Jesus loves you no matter what you've done.

Narrator: Friends, it's because of God's blessing and your support, thousands of others just like Reuben, have found Jesus and eternal life.

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