It is amazing to think about the innocence of youth, and our blindness as we drag our hopes and dreams and ambitions into the future.  When I was in grade school, I had my eye on the next step—high school.  All during high school, I was preparing for the next step—college.  When I was in college, I was focused on getting the highest possible grades, so I could get into the best graduate school.

My dream of a graduate degree did not happen.  I was only able to complete one year of a two year MBA program.  If someone had told me when I was in grade school that one day I would become an insane drug addict and alcoholic, that and I would see time in county jails, 13 chemical dependency treatment centers, various hospitals from two near fatal car accidents, a near fatal motorcycle accident, and three grand-mal seizures from over dosing on crack cocaine, I would never have believed them.  If I had been told that one day I would be homeless and all alone in a city that was not my own, I would not have believed them.

Some days, compared to the innocence of my youth, my life feels corrupted, polluted, damaged, fear-filled, lonely, full of anger and rage, confused, remorseful, sad and depressed, in shock, in despair, hurt to the heart, non-trusting, dangerous.

I actually did achieve many of the goals that I set as a young boy.

I earned straight A grades in both high school and college, I worked for some fortune 500 companies, I had a very successful career in sales and I have helped a lot of people who were dying of addiction.  I have done some volunteer work for the homeless, and I have mentored addicts living in the halfway house that I graduated from 18 years ago.

I have made good progress in healing and building up my family relationships.  I have helped a young family member to navigate getting sober out of the same halfway house that I went to.  I have won the respect of my brothers and sisters, after 28 years of destructive drug addiction and broken relationships.

One of my life revelations, is that my pain of addiction and homelessness has a purpose.  The purpose of my past is to give hope, love, encouragement and peace to the still suffering addict, who may think that he or she cannot recover.  If I was not aware of, or did not accept this life purpose, my life would be meaningless, and I would be devoured by self-hate and depression for the things I have done in the past.

Therefore, as rough and painful and horrific as my life has been, there is still hope for me, if I keep my eye on helping others. 

Just like the young boy in the picture, I need a best friend to walk with me on the journey ahead.  Although I am just getting to know Him, Jesus Christ must become my best friend.  Only Jesus can guide me through the labyrinth of spiritual hurdles and dangers that lie ahead.

When I had reached the end of my homeless journey while I was living outside on the streets of Denver, Colorado, I was completely crushed spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically.  I was infested with fear, hatred, resentments, anger and rage.  I was depressed and confused and I felt very close to death.  It was as if I could feel death breathing down the back of my neck, inviting me to die.

In utter desperation and consumed with fear, I said a very simple prayer:  “Jesus, please help me.”  That single prayer has given direction to my life for the last 18 years of sobriety.  Thank you Jesus.  Thank you Jesus.  Thank you Jesus!

Here is the book that I wrote and published, about the story of my life as an addict and my miraculous recovery:

Saved By The Prince Of Peace—Dungeon To Sky.”

You can purchase the book on my website:

The Facebook page for the book is:

Peace and Blessings to you!

Bob Allison

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.

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