JESUS AND THE LIGHTHOUSE.

JESUS HAS BEEN GUIDING ME, CALLING ME, ALL OF MY LIFE, NOW I AM FINALLY LISTENING!

The 28 years of my life as an active self-destructive addict were very much

like being in the center of a demonic storm at sea.  I felt like a cork lost at sea with

no land in sight.  The waves were 30 feet high and came crashing down upon me,

as sea salt blinded my eyes.  I was slowly losing all of my strength, and I felt the sea

pulling me down beneath the black waves.

 

I have never felt such relentless terror and bone aching loneliness, as I did

during these lost 28 years.  My adrenal glands had been operating in an

environment of extreme emergency for so long, that my  body no longer

was able to keep up with the demand for adrenaline.  I had developed

pancreatitis from excessive alcohol use and I contracted Hepatitis C

from sharing needles to shoot cocaine.

 

The feeling of death moving towards me with inevitability, and seeing its urgent

thirst for my life, was overwhelming.  My street friends were dying all around me. 

At the end of my journey, I felt death breathing down the back of my neck, and I felt

a cold chill down my spine.  I was living with an overwhelming terror that my life was

over.

 

Although I had serious physical damage to my body like pancreatitis and

the hepatitis C virus, the most important illness was my dying spirit and the

loss of hope to carry on.  I felt dead inside and I felt empty like a vacuum in

the lab of some mad scientist’s random experiment.  Imagine someone

removing your spirit, and then dumping into you, rage, anger, hate,

overwhelming fear and wild terror and then sprinkling it all with a loneliness

that makes your bones ache with a festering infection.  It is God’s miracle

that I ever survived those long lonely years of terror and pain!

 

No doubt, I created much of my world of pain, fear and loneliness by my

own addictive lifestyle and my very poor choices.  However, there does

come a time when the disease of addiction is highly advanced, when

the addict loses all control of his or her life, and becomes a total slave

and robot to the disease of addiction.

 

The final phase of an addict’s self-destruction and journey towards death is

the loss of Hope.  At the end of my addictive journey, I lived outside,

homeless on the streets of Denver, Colorado for one year.  The streets were

dangerous and homeless people were being targeted by the Skin Head gang

for murder, to satisfy an entrance requirement to join their gang.

 

I was attacked by a lunatic with two butcher knives in the middle of the

night, as I slept alongside my Husky dog, Princess, down by the Platt river.

My dog Princess began growling menacingly, with her teeth barred as she

stared into the woods.  Every muscle in her body was tense and ready for

action.

 

I stood up and looked into the woods and saw a man with a white skull mask

moving rapidly towards us, and he was holding two long butcher knives in his wait band.

When he got to within 30 feet he stopped and announced, “I am a Skin Head

and I am going to kill you right now”.  As soon as he took one step closer to us,

Princess exploded and lunged at his knees and bit him multiple times. 

As Princess was rushing in to attack him again, the man raised his two knives

up high, ready to stab Princess on both sides of her ribs, but she was too quick

and she danced to the side and the attacker missed her.  I knew that I was not going to win a fight

with a lunatic with two butcher knives, so I decided to run.

 

This distraction allowed me enough time to run up the river bank, and then I called to

Princess and she ran up the hill to join me.  We ran together for three miles down the

side of the  river until we felt safe.  We did not sleep that night.

 

At the end of my nightmare journey, I found a safe place to sleep at night.

I found an electrical closet in an alley behind my favorite bar.  I could open

the small closet with a plastic comb and once inside, I could lock the door

by pushing the push button on the inside door knob.  This was safe and prime real

estate when you are living outside on the streets in all seasons.

 

Here is the miracle.  In the last days of this living hell, I had become

overwhelmed with fear, terror, confusion, hatred, anger and rage and I was

so lonely, it felt like a crushing weight was on top of my heart. 

 

In complete fear and desperation, I cried out a very simple and powerful

prayer:  “Jesus Please Help Me.”  Three days later, I was sitting in a group

of addicts at Hazelden Foundation, one of the best chemical dependency

treatment centers in the nation.  That was in 1998 and today, by the Grace

of God, I have 18 years sober and I am free of all chemicals.

 

JESUS HAS BEEN GUIDING ME, CALLING ME, ALL OF MY LIFE,

NOW I AM FINALLY LISTENING!  Jesus has been the light house in my life calling me

back to his love and safety out of a raging sea.

I have learned that if I want Jesus to help me, I must first ask Him for His

help and then have faith that He will help me.  Jesus saved my life, and now He is

motivating me to help other addicts.   In the 18 years of sobriety

and freedom that Jesus has given me, Jesus has blessed me with a beautiful

wife and two West Highland Terrier puppies.  We own a great home in a safe

and quiet neighborhood, and we are at peace.  My wife Rochelle and I have been

married for 14 years, and I am so very grateful for all of God’s blessings in

our life together.

 

My passion now is to help other addicts to achieve sobriety and to be free.

Check out my published book, “Saved By The Prince Of Peace—Dungeon To Sky.” 

The website for the book is:  http://www.dungeontosky.com

On the website, I have written over 40 blogs on important issues on addiction and recovery.

I also have a dedicated Facebook page for the book, which is:   https://www.facebook.com/dungeontosky.com

Jesus is the Lighthouse in the storm of our lives.  Call on His name and be free!

 

 

 

About The Author

Robert J. Allison lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota with his wife Rochelle Allison. Robert survived a 28-year battle with chemical dependency, including 13 chemical dependency treatment centers and homelessness. He surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and began his new life of faith and contented sobriety. Robert has been blessed with 18 years of sobriety and with his new freedom he now is helping other addicts to find peace, faith and the priceless gift of sobriety.

STING RAYS 3

 

Just like this school of Sting Rays, addicts get sober and then stay sober in groups.

Together we thrive, but alone we fail.

Today, a person said to me, “I am surprised that you have had the history that you describe.

You are articulate and well educated and you are intelligent.  How could you have fallen

to the level of a homeless addict, living on the streets like an animal?”

 

I told him that it is a very long and painful story spanning over 28 years of my life.

In my teenage years, I did not wake up one day and say to myself, “My goal is to lose

everything I am as a person, have my spirit crushed, and live in overwhelming fear, anger and

desperation and then drive myself over a cliff to my certain death.”

Nobody grows up wanting to become an addict.

 

Yes, it is true that I did lose everything as a result of my addiction to alcohol, marijuana

and cocaine.

I lost my dignity.

I lost my self-confidence and all of my self-worth.  I came to hate myself.

I lost my authenticity and my moral code of right and wrong.

There was no more integrity left in me.

I lost my mind, my emotions, my heart and my soul to a disease that was

determined to kill me.

I lost the light in my life, and I lived in the darkness.

I lost my inner peace and I was controlled by fear, anger and hatred.

I lost all self- respect and turned my hatred inward, so I could destroy myself day after day.

 

I lost my compassion for others and the love I once had in my soul.

I lost all but two relationships and I had destroyed the rest because of my addiction.

I damaged my relationship with Jesus, and I was full of shame and guilt.

Today, I know that my sin only temporarily separated me from Jesus.

Jesus had already forgiven me and He had already paid the cost of my sin

when He died on the Cross.  Jesus had always loved me and He always will!

Jesus was waiting for me to surrender to Him, so He could give me a new

beautiful sober life.  Jesus could see my future, but I could not.

 

I became a reckless lunatic out of touch with reality.

I was slowly self-destructing and I knew it, but I did not care anymore about anything.

My manic depression was eating away at my mind.  I could no longer function

and make good  decisions.  If a thought came into my mind, I would just do it,

regardless of the consequences.

 

My mind and soul were focused on only one thing—getting and using more chemicals

to get high.  I was controlled by the mental obsession to get high, and the physical

craving for chemicals.  I had become a prisoner in my own skin, and I had become

completely powerless.  I was lost like a cork in a raging sea, and there was no land in sight.

 

Inside of me was a powerful, all-consuming loneliness that hovered over me like a black cloud.

The loneliness was with me when I woke up, and it was with me when I closed my eyes

to sleep.  I could feel this loneliness aching like an infection in my bones.

 

Addicts will use chemicals to fill up an emptiness and a spiritual yearning inside of them.

I poured alcohol, pot and cocaine into that black hole for 28 years, and it never filled me up,

it never satisfied my soul.  My addiction was a murderous demon that smiled an evil smile,

as it tore me apart.

 

I take responsibility for and I am very much aware of how I created the chaos and pain in my life and

in the lives of people in my life while I was an active addict.  I made very poor impulsive decisions that

helped to determine the destructive course of my life.  Even though I was out of my mind, I still admit

that my choices took me where I was going.  No one else is to blame but myself.

 

I did not want to blow the man’s mind that asked me the original question, which was:

“I am surprised that you have had the history that you describe…….

You are articulate and well educated and you are intelligent.  How could you have fallen

to the level of a homeless addict, living on the streets like an animal?”

 

He was definitely ignorant about addiction, and I did not want to go into all of the gory details

that I listed above, so I gave him a description of what addiction is, how it progresses and

the fact that addiction is non-discriminatory.  The disease of addiction will destroy and kill

anybody regardless of race, income, personality, education or family history.

I think that he had a pre-set image of what an addict looks like, and he did not think I was it.

 

There is still a lot of ignorance and stigma regarding addicts.  Some people still do not believe

in the concept of addiction as a terminal disease.  They are stuck in the era of cave men,

and they  think that addiction is a moral weakness or a deliberate choice.

I told him that the miracle of recovery happens everyday and that addicts come back

to themselves and back to their families, and in time, there is healing.

The truth is that addiction is like a living, breathing demon that destroys us mentally,

emotionally, physically and spiritually until we are gone.

 

However, recovery is possible when we surrender completely.

If I can get sober after 13 treatment centers, manic depression and

one year of homelessness, then you can recover too!

One day at a time, with the help of other recovering addicts, you will recover!

 

Miracles can and do happen every day in the lives of addicts, once they make their final

surrender and become willing to go to any lengths to get and stay sober.

We have our recovery groups and we have God to bring us back to ourselves, and to show us

how to use our experience, strength and hope to save the lives of other addicts.

This way, our pain and our past has a specific purpose—to help others.

The key is to have a spiritual awakening and to find a power greater than ourselves.

My higher power is Jesus Christ, and he has saved my life!

My book, “Saved By the Prince Of Peace- Dungeon To Sky” tells my story

and it will give you hope and strength.

The website for my book is:  dungeontosky.com

On the website, you will find over 100 blogs that I have written on various important topics

of addiction and recovery.

Peace, Love and Blessings to you!

 

 

 

About The Author

Robert J. Allison lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota with his wife Rochelle Allison. Robert survived a 28-year battle with chemical dependency, including 13 chemical dependency treatment centers and homelessness. He surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and began his new life of faith and contented sobriety. Robert has been blessed with 18 years of sobriety and with his new freedom he now is helping other addicts to find peace, faith and the priceless gift of sobriety.

DSCN0098

I first got the news in 1998 when I was admitted to Hazelden Foundation for

chemical dependency.  I had just survived a year living outside on the streets

of Denver, Colorado and I was in very bad shape.  Every cell in my body was

screaming.  I had pancreatitis from alcohol.  I was exhausted, mentally, emotionally

and physically.  My spirit was crushed, and I felt dead and angry inside.

 

I ended up staying at Hazelden for a total of nine months and I needed it.

I spent 30 days in primary treatment, then four months in the extended care unit

called Jellinek, and four months in a halfway house.

At the “mother ship” at Hazelden, I completed several blood tests to determine the

state of my health.

 

Two days after the tests, I was called to the medical clinic and told that my liver enzymes

were extremely elevated, and they told me that I had contracted Hepatitis C.

The most likely cause of my getting Hepatitis C, was sharing needles while

shooting cocaine.

 

Back in 1998, Hepatitis C had no cure and it doomed the person to a painful death

with sclerosis of the liver, liver cancer and finally liver failure and death.  They told me

that it takes about 20 years for the sclerosis to  develop and then the cancer might

develop after that.  I have been sober for 18 years, ever since I graduated from Hazelden

in 1998.  My Hepatologist (liver doctor) told me that I have moderate scarring or

sclerosis of my liver.  I became very worried and upset since it looked like my time was

running out and I was going to die an ugly death.

 

Late last Fall, I received a call from my hepatologist and he said that there was

a new drug, approved by the FDA, with documentation proving that it kills 95%

of the Hepatitis C virus.  This was HUGE NEWS!  What this mean’t was that me and

millions of Hepatitis C patients will now have a new lease on life.  Going forward, I

could have 95 % less accumulated liver damage and my life will be extended.

The name of the new drug is “Harvoni”.

 

The second miracle that happened relates to the cost of the new liver drug.

The cost of Harvoni is $95,000.  In my case, the treatment duration is two months,

taking one pill per day.  When I initially heard about the $95,000 price tag, I was very discouraged.

My insurance company denied the request.  Then while I was on the phone with my

insurance company, a second call came in from my pharmacy.  The pharmacy explained

to me that they in fact just got approval for the $95,000 drug Harvoni.  I was approved for the treatment.

 

I have great news to share with you!  I completed the two month treatment and half way

through the treatment, blood tests revealed that I was cured.  Today, I have no trace of Hepatitis C

in my body.  Another miracle from Jesus!  Jesus has given me new hope and a new love for Him!

 

Winston Churchhill said, “ Never, never, never give up!”  For any of you out there with

Hepatitis C, there is hope and there is a cure called Harvoni.

Jesus answers prayers!  All things are possible with Jesus!

Peace, Love and Blessings to you!

About The Author

Robert J. Allison lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota with his wife Rochelle Allison. Robert survived a 28-year battle with chemical dependency, including 13 chemical dependency treatment centers and homelessness. He surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and began his new life of faith and contented sobriety. Robert has been blessed with 18 years of sobriety and with his new freedom he now is helping other addicts to find peace, faith and the priceless gift of sobriety.

Lone Wolf

 

Like the wolf in the picture, I was isolated in the wilderness, crying out for help.

The disease of addiction that lived inside of me, encouraged me to push away the

people that I love, especially my family members.  Getting the addict isolated and

alone is a primary goal of the disease, because then there is no one for the addict to cry

out to when the inevitable crisis strikes.

 

Addicts feel loneliness and desperation that is super charged in its intensity.

I believe that many addicts die of loneliness and a broken spirit devoid of hope.

There was a time while I was homeless and living outside on the streets of Denver,

Colorado, when I could feel the loneliness in my bones, like a dull aching pain that never

went away.  This loneliness was with me when I closed my eyes to sleep, and it was

waiting for me at every sunrise.

 

A miracle happened this past weekend.  There are four brothers in our family and

All four of us brothers met up in the North Woods of Wisconsin.  This was the first time in 30

years that just the four of us got together.  For 28 years,  I had been a raving lunatic carried

away by my addiction and there was only one brother who had the courage or the desire to help

me survive those storms.  I am very grateful for him.

 

I was remembering my brothers as young men in their twenties and thirties, but here we

were, all of us in our early fifties.  The young men had grown up and were full of

knowledge, wisdom and grace.  They welcomed me back into the fold like the prodigal

son that I am.

 

We talked for hours as we sat around the kitchen table, reminding each other of

memories past, laughing and feeling grateful to be together after such a long time.

We were talking about a book titled, “The One Thing” by Gary Keller and discussing

How multi-tasking is actually impossible and ineffective.

 

When I sensed a lull in the conversation, I spoke up, called each one of them by

name and I said, “I Love You”.  I thanked them for their support over the painful years

of my addiction.  I immediately sensed a window in their hearts opening  up, and they each

proceeded to tell me how much respect and admiration they had for me, to have survived

the hell of addiction and to have achieved 18 years free of chemicals.

 

They began to share tough times they had in their past lives, and they even shared

some emotions.  They told me that they loved me, and I felt years of bitterness and resentment

melt  away,  One brother admitted that he did nothing to help me and he described how he

had just buried his head in the sand and pretended my addiction did not exist..

The other brother said that he was terrified that I was going to die and he felt powerless to do

anything for me.  Receiving their perspectives helped me to understand what they went through

and why they kept their distance.

 

Most of this was my fault.  After all, I had pushed them away while holding tightly onto

my addiction and running away to Colorado and other places.  They saw me, at a distance,

going to 13 treatment centers and they heard that I had spent time in several county jails

and that I was homeless for one year.  I definitely hurt them in my using days by my

reckless behavior and I believe what I went through scared them.

The five near-death experiences I had shocked them and they must have felt powerless

as I spun out of control.

 

Jesus brought us back together for good reasons, and now we have a window in

time to be the brothers that He wants us to be.  The brothers are back in town!

Never give up hope in your relationships.  God does His healing in His time, not ours.

Miracles can and do happen in the lives of addicts every day.  Thank God!

 

About The Author

Robert J. Allison lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota with his wife Rochelle Allison. Robert survived a 28-year battle with chemical dependency, including 13 chemical dependency treatment centers and homelessness. He surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and began his new life of faith and contented sobriety. Robert has been blessed with 18 years of sobriety and with his new freedom he now is helping other addicts to find peace, faith and the priceless gift of sobriety.

You will know when you are on the right path.

You will know when you are on the right path.

At the end of a long and painful 28 year battle with chemical dependency, manic depression and homelessness, I found myself at the end of the road and on the wrong path.

I was homeless in Denver, Colorado for one year and I had learned ways to survive living outside.  The streets had become dangerous and I needed to find a safe place to sleep at night.

One day I was walking down the alley behind my favorite bar, and I discovered an electrical utility closet that I could open with a plastic comb.  Inside the closet on the inside door knob, was a push button lock, which mean’t that I could go into the closet and lock the door.

I had an acquaintance who was stabbed to death in an alley over a pool game and I was attacked by a skin head gang member with two butcher knives down by the river.  Another time, I was attacked by three men who encircled me in an alley and proceeded to hit me in the face.  I narrowly escaped them.  In total, I survived five near-death experiences including three grand mal seizures from over-dosing on crack, two car accidents and one motorcycle accident.

At the end, I could feel death breathing down the back of my neck, and I knew that I was close to dying.  My whole spirit was screaming at me to make a positive change and get out of there as fast as possible.  I knew in my heart and my soul, that I was on the path to destruction and my life was going to be cut short.  My time was up, and I knew that I was at the end of my destructive journey.

The turning point for me was when I became completely consumed and filled with fear, rage, confusion and desperation.  I had finally become completely defeated by drugs and alcohol and my addiction was killing me spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically.  After a very destructive 28 years of active addiction, I finally became humble and gratefully surrendered my life to Jesus. At the end, in complete terror and desperation, I said the most important prayer of my life:  Like a prime evil scream, I cried out loud, “JESUS PLEASE HELP ME!

Two days later, I was sitting in a circle with 25 other addicts at Hazelden Foundation, one of the best treatment centers in the nation.  My miracle had come and I just knew that I was on the right path.  It is that small still voice that lives inside of us, that tells us if we are on the right path or the wrong path.  It also tells us if we are doing right, or if we are doing wrong.  I did a fair amount of shoplifting while living on the streets. One time, I was in a clothing store and I was about to steal some clothes.  I heard inside of me, an urgent voice saying, “No, do not steal anything”.  Ignoring the voice, I stole a shirt and shoved it in my coat anyway.  I found out later that there were hidden cameras all over the store.  Two guys chased me all over the store, caught me and I was arrested.  Before I stole that shirt, I knew that I was on the wrong path.  The problem is that I ignored the voice, a voice that was trying to protect me from myself.

We know when we are on the right path or the wrong path.  We know when we are defeated and we know when it is time to surrender.  Addiction complicates the matter because our mental obsession to use drugs and our physical craving for drugs along with our denial, clouds our judgment, and allows us to be reckless and foolish.

When we get sober, we look back on our using days and shake our heads in disbelief of the hell that we lived in for so many years.  Jesus has blessed me with 18 years of grateful sobriety, and I am not looking back.  Today, I know in my heart and in my soul, that I am on the right path.  Please listen to your inner voice and stay on the right path.

Sobriety is a gift from god and we should cherish it like a priceless gem.

Peace to you!

 

 

About The Author

Robert J. Allison lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota with his wife Rochelle Allison. Robert survived a 28-year battle with chemical dependency, including 13 chemical dependency treatment centers and homelessness. He surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and began his new life of faith and contented sobriety. Robert has been blessed with 18 years of sobriety and with his new freedom he now is helping other addicts to find peace, faith and the priceless gift of sobriety.

WHAT A FEELING-2

Imagine how great life would be if we embraced Hope, Faith and LOVE as the guiding principles of our lives. 

Like a filter for our thoughts and a road map for our actions, LOVE will be with you to show you the right way.  Of course, we must first accept, adopt and be obedient to what LOVE encourages us to do.

It all starts with our thoughts and our spirit.  Our thoughts drive our actions.  Every single one of our actions starts with our thoughts. 

LOVE shows up intensely in our relationships with all people.  For example, if I love my wife, I will make sacrifices and do things that I don’t want to do, because I love her and doing these things make her happy.  For example, doing the dishes.  My wife is a good cook, but she trashes the kitchen with pots and pans and dirty dishes piled up in the sink. 

I have two choices.  I can do the dishes and thank her for all of her hard work in preparing the delicious meal, or I can be selfish and self-centered and think only about what I want.  I love my wife and I want her to feel appreciated and loved.  Doing the dishes is one way that I show her that I love her.

This same principle can strengthen any one of our relationships. Love others first before thinking of ourselves.  It is important to understand that for all human beings on planet Earth, the root of our spiritual sickness is our own self-centeredness.  We cannot be thinking of ourselves and other people at the same time.

For drug addicts and alcoholics, this principle of loving others before ourselves is a matter of life and death.  When addicts are using chemicals, and even in sobriety, they are mostly thinking about themselves and how they can get what they want.  When an addict is feeling depressed or lonely or angry or fearful, they are at high risk of relapsing.  The reason for this is that addicts cannot fix themselves and wallowing in their own self-pity brings desperation and eventually the chemicals follow.  Here is the miracle:  When addicts get out of themselves and go out and help another addict to stay sober, they have freedom and release from their negative emotions and they stay sober themselves!  They are no longer in danger of relapsing and they feel great gratitude!

Here is the big picture:  Hope gives birth to Faith and Faith brings forth LOVE.  When I was homeless and living outside on the streets of Denver, Colorado, I saw hundreds of addicts who had lost all hope and were shuffling around waiting to die.

There was a very dark time when I was at the end of my ropes and I was consumed by fear, terror, anger and rage, depression and confusion, and I felt death breathing down the back of my neck.  I was on the edge of losing all of my hope.  It was like being shaken by a dark stormy night and walking to the edge of a great cliff and then having to decide to jump over the edge in desperation, or to see that there is hope and then there is faith.  Faith makes LOVE possible.

I made the decision at the end of that dark time to surrender to Jesus Christ who had been chasing after me all of my life.  I grasped onto the last bit of hope that I had and I had faith that Jesus would give me a new life.  Today, I am working hard to LOVE other addicts.  I have published my book entitled, “Saved By The Prince Of Peace—Dungeon To Sky.”  I have also written over 100  blogs on my website about addiction and recovery which can be found at  http://www.dungeontosky.com

Whenever I meet addicts, I do everything I can to help them and I share my personal story which is in the book.  So again, Hope, Faith and LOVE are the keys to a happy spirit.

In summary, thoughts drive actions and actions determine relationships.  Hope is the important seed that leads to faith, and faith brings LOVE to life.

Our relationships are always more enjoyable when we act out of Hope, Faith and LOVE.  So every day we have a choice—we can have the best possible relationship by giving LOVE, or we can wallow in our self-centeredness and watch the relationship deteriorate.  

Try embracing Hope, Faith and LOVE in your relationships and you will feel great joy and peace.

 

About The Author

Robert J. Allison lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota with his wife Rochelle Allison. Robert survived a 28-year battle with chemical dependency, including 13 chemical dependency treatment centers and homelessness. He surrendered his life to Jesus Christ and began his new life of faith and contented sobriety. Robert has been blessed with 18 years of sobriety and with his new freedom he now is helping other addicts to find peace, faith and the priceless gift of sobriety.