TJ was a professional cook for decades who also battled with alcohol. At one point he lost his job and began taking care of the house and family. Consequently he found himself with quite a bit of free time on his hands and alcohol became an all consuming force in TJ’s life.
Then TJ had a stroke and wound up in a wheelchair. Still not doing well, in the streets he got beat up while still in the chair and ended up in the hospital with injuries on top of his medical condition.
One of the local hospitals recommended he come here. TJ arrived in the chair, in denial, and looking pretty wild. I wasn’t sure he was at all right in his head!
It’s now been 4 months. TJ has gone from the wheelchair to one of those big-wheeled walkers and goes all over the campus. In fact, he has gotten so much better that he can now walk up and down one flight of stairs – in order to smoke a cigarette!
But best of all is how TJ thinks and can articulate what he is thinking today. And then there is that smile – because he knows he is making real progress all the way around.
I won’t be surprised if this old guy actually walks across the stage to receive his diploma at the end of 12 months. Helping Up Mission is a great place to hang out and witness some amazing things.
One Guy at a Time,
Pastor Gary Byers