No. 1027



According to the dictionary, the word “scourge” means “a cause of suffering or trouble.” This is exactly what we have in our nation when it comes to illegal drugs, and this includes the use of alcohol. This is definitely a black mark and blight on our society as thousands of our citizens die each year, either from direct drug use or accidents that come about as the result of using illegal drugs. We have reached the point where no community escapes the harmful effects of illegal drug use. In most cases, law enforcement is battling it as best they can, but from all accounts they are losing the war.
The lowest common denominator is the individual life that is adversely affected by this scourge. If you, a family member, close friend or someone you truly care about is hooked on drugs, I hope you will consider very carefully what I am going to share with you in this column. Believe it or not, there is a solution to this problem, effective a vast majority of the time, when administered with love, concern, commitment and discipline.
Unfortunately, for many drug users they have to get so far down to where they have lost everything before they will seek help. While it may sound too simple, what I am going to say next is indeed true. The person who has a spirit-filled, born-again relationship with Jesus Christ will truly come to understand what drugs are doing to their body, causing pain and heartache to their family and facing the prospects of early or premature death if they do not get help. We have a great residential substance abuse program in our community called Renewal Ranch that started in 2008. Since that time, more than 100 men have gone through the program, up to a year and longer if needed, with more than a 70 percent success rate. There is no cost to the resident at all.
There are about 40 men in the program at the present time, and each week at their chapel service there are from five to 10 more who wish to enter the program. Sadly, most are turned away simply for lack of space. Our church is a strong supporter of this program, and several weeks ago these men had a Sunday evening service and sang songs and gave personal testimonies. They have developed a nice presentation where each man has a large piece of cardboard with their condition before coming to know Jesus on one side and then they turn it over to show where they are now after coming to know Him. The program includes a regular diet of Bible study, learning a marketable skill, and doing various helpful things in our community.
The following Friday after being in our church on Sunday, they held a “Rally for Recovery” fundraising event at our large Expo Center with more than 1,100 people in attendance. The founder of the program, Dr. Larry Pillow, who lost a son by drug overdose, sums up the mission of the program with these simple words: “Every Father Deserves a Sober Son, and Every Son Deserves a Sober Father.” When it comes to dealing with illegal drugs, if you have ever been sick and tired of being sick and tired, this is something you may wish to consider for your own community.
While I have never taken any illegal drugs in my own life, I can tell you the joy I feel when I see grown men, whose lives have been wrecked and they were at the end of their rope, restored and back with their families. One of Dr. Pillow’s goals is to also start a drug recovery program for women, as many of them are also addicted to illegal drugs. The motto of Renewal Ranch is “Restoring Broken Lives through Christ” and they are making a tremendous difference in the lives of these man. If you want to know more, visit
(EDITOR’S NOTE: THE DEAL OF THE CENTURY – Begin your day on a positive note – 365 days for $12. This will benefit the Bookcase for Every Child project. Go to to subscribe.)