Light of Life Rescue Mission Podcast: HOPE UNVEILED Podcast Artwork Image
Light of Life Rescue Mission Podcast: HOPE UNVEILED
Jesus Is In Front Of Me
January 23, 2019 Light of Life Rescue Mission
Light of Life Rescue Mission Podcast: HOPE UNVEILED

Jesus Is In Front Of Me

January 23, 2019

Hutch tells his amazing life story of ups and downs that brought him to Light of Life years ago, and how his transformation has led him to now working here at the mission. Listen to hear his story of addiction, loss, pain, homelessness, incarceration, and life transformation through Jesus Christ. 

Hutch tells his amazing life story of ups and downs that brought him to Light of Life years ago, and how his transformation has led him to now working here at the mission. Listen to hear his story of addiction, loss, pain, homelessness, incarceration, and life transformation through Jesus Christ. 

Episode Transcript

Speaker 1:0:01Hi, I'm Kate Wadsworth. Welcome to light of life rescue missions podcast. Hope unveiled where you hear stories of hope and change from clients, staff, and volunteers today. You'll hear from punch who many of you already know and love. He first came to light of life as a client and today serves on staff as a cook in our kitchen. So Hutch, we're here together today to talk a little bit about your experience with light of life. Thank you so much for doing this today. So you started at light of life as a client. What year was that?

Speaker 2:0:41After being released from the allegheny county jail. I got here, I arrived at the ministry on April Twenty six. Two thousand and four.

Speaker 1:0:52Alright, well let's go ahead and talk about what was happening before you got here. Like what led to you coming to light of life until.

Speaker 2:1:04Well, what for me coming to light a light was. We'll back it up a little bit. You know, came from a very, very good upbringing. I'm a two person household. My father and my mother were both very hard workers, held don prominent positions or you know, in the, um, in the establishments where they worked at, uh, but you know, it myself, I just,

Speaker 2:1:34you know, and I think it had a lot to do with peer pressure, you know, growing up as a child, being bullied, being bullied, you know, I was overweight, I was called a lot of names and you know, that had a lot to do with my self esteem and that's so instead of medicating in a proper way, which I could have done, you know, I wasn't medicating and you know, different ways and you know, before I got here. So in a nutshell, it was 24 years of bottom righteousness of, you know, being a hardcore alcoholic. When did you first start drinking? Uh, I started experimenting with a bear around the age of 16.

Speaker 2:2:16Then naturally, you know, and I say this in the lobby man, or I didn't think drinking was fun anymore because when I turned 21 it was legal to drink. So that I started drinking a little bit more. So what had happened was that in 1987 I'd find out, you know, uh, by my mom, she was living at the time and by my sister sandy did, you know, my dad had taken ill and went into where we're going to lose him as fast as we did, you know, and he'd wind up dying pretty quickly. So that was in 1987. I turned 24 at the time. And so with losing my dad, that's when my downward spiral started taking place in. I really started drinking heavily.

Speaker 1:2:59Yeah. So what was that like when you

Speaker 2:3:00were in the downward spiral in the darkest part of your drinking? What were you thinking and feeling and what was that experience like for those who might not know? Well, I mean basically, I mean, I'll share it. It shouldn't have lobbying or that I didn't care. I did care, but, you know, I really, I just, you know, when I drank and uh, you know, like in my prior testimonies that night that, you know, I felt like superman, you know, to just directed for me, uh, I want to say it gave me unwanted power so that I didn't have it. What's, it actually didn't come to later find out.

Speaker 1:3:38So from your childhood where you were kind of picked on and bullied too, then losing your dad and having a lot of feelings about that, that was kind of the perfect storm for you to drink and feel differently, feel more powerful than, than what you were.

Speaker 2:3:51Yeah. She goes, know a lot of people was that I used to associate with, you know, and I don't blame anybody on my drink and bought myself my past drinking I should say praise the Lord for deliberate that day. I got delivered from alcoholism. But yeah, you know, I've seen other restrengthened seen upon that, that they were having. And, uh, meanwhile the plot that I was having, you know, in our praise, the Lord put us everyday that led nothing to but a chaos for me and that's what I turned into 24 years of chaos.

Speaker 1:4:21So you lose your dad, you're drinking and you have chaos going on. What happened? What was next?

Speaker 2:4:27Uh, I was trying to hold on as many jobs as I could. What type of work were you doing? Thomas Landscape and I had a prominent position at a fire extinguisher placed on Insurance Berg at the time I worked for a pizza shop. I've worked for a car wash. I worked at a coat factory, auto on mcknight road. So my resume, my job history runs from the light of life ministry on the north side to the hometown of Atlanta that I grew up in, back and forth. And I can sit here today and be honest with you because of being a non functioning alcoholic, of all the good jobs that I had lost. So I tried to maintain, you know, my dad was gone in 1987. Uh, it. So, um, uh, progressed up until, you know, a 2003, they're not find out for my sister Sandy. You know, I just, uh, you know, I admire my sister. I love her dearly, uh, one of my family members that hadn't given up hope on me.

Speaker 1:5:40That's really special to have someone love you through all of that.

Speaker 2:6:01You know, what? I had a patient where, you know, given up hope in myself. So come the pond out. My mom was sick and then my mum wind up passing away on May 14 to 2003. Then that's one of the downward spiral really took place. You know, I prayed the, you know, my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I didn't want to live anymore. My mom was gone, you know, she was one of my very good friends, you know, drink or law, smoker who didn't put up with any nonsense and you know, who am I at the age of 40 to still be living under her roof. And, you know, I show you that I was doing some very outrageous things, but, you know, there'll be times when I'd stay out at Migraine, wouldn't even give her the courtesy of a phone call and wanting to come home or driving my mom's car. My mom kept a car. She doesn't drive, but she kept it, you know, just so I was able to take her places and, you know, and uh, you know, I just felt terrible about it.

Speaker 1:7:07Yeah. So, um, your mom died in 2003. That's when things got really worse. What was the worst, like the bottom for you? The moment that was the worst, the turnaround moment

Speaker 2:7:21hold. The turnaround came when, uh, my sister Sandy,

Speaker 3:7:29that.

Speaker 2:7:31And she informed me, you know, because my sister was always honest with me about things. And that's one thing I appreciate about my sister is that she's very outspoken, you know, because she had power of attorney and you know, we don't want anything from our parents because that's just how much they loved us and we loved them. But she informed me that, you know, you gotta go to county sheriffs were coming to take my mom's house because she know she owed back taxes on a mortgage and uh, so I went from, you know, staying in the 11 room harsh at the age of 40 my mom die and me holding that, a prominent position working in the maintenance department for a major mall up in the asphalt, where are we going to happen? A couple of dollars in my pocket to trying to get my life in order. And uh, but needless to say, you know, all that money that I was getting from my checks were they weren't going to welcome colonel apartment. You know, my sister was very open and honest with me. She said, all you gotTa do is shave a couple of dollars.

Speaker 2:8:43All the furniture that a harsh I will give to you time to grow up is what she was saying and get out and get on your own. But needless to say, I wasn't doing any of that. I was continually got Medicaid and then Medicaid, even Harvard, my mom was gone. So basically to get back with you asked me is coming to wind up losing the home and being homeless for that night that I became homeless in 2003. Two thousand and three. Yep. Ebraheem homicide was that night. Like it was a wake up call that I needed. It was a wake up call that I needed. Yeah. I become homeless on, let me see. October 15th of 2003, the poor team actually because the next day I was getting ready to spend six months in the county jail thankfully to a got magic straightened the Schadler area who is now retired to care. Cared enough about me and said how much I'm done with you. I'm going to sit you down. You're 40 years old and you need to think about some things right now. You been up in my office on numerous occasions for disorderly conduct, bonds and that. But he said, today I'm done with you. See you went to court and you had to go to jail. Yep. October 15, 14, 14. I wasn't going to go. Uh, as you know, my prior testimony, I was going to choose another option,

Speaker 2:10:14uh, I'll share with us, but that other option was, well, basically everybody out there listening don't know what it was I'm going to share with you is I didn't want to live anymore. I'd given up all hope. My Mom's going now. I mean, you know, my mom had gone and uh, my, my mom had passed away and I wouldn't want to say that, you know, my family members had disassociated themselves with me.

Speaker 3:10:44But

Speaker 2:10:45this is something that I had to find out that I could do on my own. You know, I got a dear friend of mine out there. Uh, my mom always stated to me in life, it's better to have one best friend in life who's going to be there with you through thick and thin, to have a bunch of hanger honors when times are top for time, show up that aren't going to be there for you. You know? And I had that and really, you know, one good friend of my life and he's still my best friend, him, him and his wife and two kids. And uh, so, so they helped you make the decision to not take your life, to go to jail. What I'm saying is they didn't, but it taught me. My buddy joe uses names, Joe Piper, actually him and his wife, marriage inhibit.

Speaker 2:11:33I laugh about it to the state because when I finally came into the light of sobriety now I couldn't know, reflect on my past and laugh about these things because, you know, I'm no longer crying because it was the chaos of the misery that I had put myself through. And I said to my buddy Joe, I said, yeah, you know, something you've kicked me in the pants in the past, but it took me to the age of 42, you know, to grow up and be the man that my parents instilled in me that I could grow up and be son. You're going to have to walk in him. And I would get a kick out of it and we laugh about it. But he always encouraged me, he said, you know, you just didn't give yourself a chance in the past, you know, and I thought that, you know, I think that has a lot to do, you know, once again, you know, with my self esteem it, that in the past, you know, I've been called the names of being an overweight that I don't even use in my terminology because you know, it takes me back to the passenger, which I'm okay.

Speaker 2:12:29I'm all right. Going back to the past because it helps me to continue to grow and learn. How long were you in jail? I spent six months in a county jail, so I entered into the allegheny county jail on October 15, 2003. And I got released on April 24 to 2004. And you came where came straight to the light and life ministries. How did you know about light of life? So what happened was not on the Pod, the pod in jail. Yeah. I was on work and pot or work, two shifts of laundry just to stay out of the negativity. Stay out of the chaos. You know,

Speaker 3:13:10um,

Speaker 2:13:12I'm thankful that I did go to jail because it was a wake up call that I need it. So what had happened was, um,

Speaker 2:13:20there was a place in the lower hill, I don't know if it's still there or not, it was called Michael's place. So I've been having a couple visits. Spider, how do I want to say it? The recording later with a proprietor or the obs is going to be accepted into this program. So here are a couple of days, uh, what's in me, uh, being released from the county jail, the CEO called me, Don from my shower and said, you know, Michael's places here, they need to see you. They want to talk to you. So the proprietor coordinator comes on and says, Hi Sean. Fortunately right now, you know, due to capacity that we have and if we have any more people, would it be, I don't want to say a safety issue or violation of Arbor crying, but there was no room at the end right now and we can't accept, you know, I'm hitting the panic button again, like what am I going to do?

Speaker 2:14:10But thankfully on a part I was on, there was a young man on his part in what he did is he overheard the story of be telling, you know, another inmate that I was in with. He said, what I want you to do is I'm getting ready to get on a three way call, go up to your hot copy yourself and get your paperwork that they have on, you know, the rescue missions or showers and that and bring it down. What I did is, and I saw live a life on her, so thankfully the three way call I was on, I called over here to the light of life and back in the day there was passed her here and his name was passed for pan rope on loving God won't hear, rode a motorcycle. And I spoke to him at morning or a couple of days before I was getting ready to get released.

Speaker 2:14:58They said, hace shut whatever you do. And it was on a Tuesday. I remember like it happened yesterday. A lot of people say that I have a mind, like an elephant asked me what I did yesterday. It's a different question, but any. I'll make a long story short, he said, uh, when conclaves and that, and you get released at 9:00, he said, just make your way over to the north side and we'll be waiting on you. He said, you know how to get to the north side. I said, yeah, I mean, my addiction, you know, in my drinking days, took me everywhere, you know, past the mission, you know, just instilled in me at a very early age from loving parents that some whatever you do in life never make fun of people because sometimes you'd never know. You know, that may be you in that certain situation, you know, knew about the light of light but didn't know what they actually did in that.

Speaker 2:15:43So came over here and got over her on a Tuesday, came into the office, a Jaguar when he was working at the time, sat down with him. He interviewed me and I was accepted into the program. What was it like for you when you first came in? What were you thinking? What was the experience like for you? Uh, I guess sometimes in life, you know, the change where people wasn't good. Like I said, you know, I'm very thankful for the former magistrate in shade or to just took enough time out of his day to care of by somebody that needed help but didn't know otherwise how to get it other than self medicate that, um, uh, the change for me was good. You know, my dad was gone at 87, my mom was gone in 2003, I don't want to say to my family really didn't want to have anything to do with me, but I just had to put some distance between myself and them to find out that I could do this on my own.

Speaker 2:16:45And I really wasn't actually doing it on my own. I was going through Christ Jesus who strengthen me, you know, so, um, I got over here and actually, um, I felt like I was in a popularity contest and I don't mean by myself. So back in the day when you were a resident here, um, as we all do with the residents, you have to scan and per your meals. But we had a signup sheet in our names were printed on it in breakfast, lunch and dinner, and all you had to do is put a check mark by your name. So the first state that I come up for lunch and I'm looking at all these names, I'm thinking, wow, I'm here with the light of life with the former president. One guy's last name was next one. I said, I'm here with an actor. One guy's name is Jackson, like Samuel l, Jackson thinking, you know something, Lord, you got me at a good place right now and this is what I want to do.

Speaker 2:17:38You know, I'm ready to get my life in the water. I can't do this. I couldn't do it. Couldn't do it anymore. I was done. I was know whatsapp, you know, but uh, I want to back it up a bit. So that might be a high wind up becoming homeless. And everything at that time had gone three 60 for me. And I said, wow, lord, if this is in a wake up call and when I'd been going by three 60 for me, I wind up sleeping on this creek bed in Atlanta where I used to party at in high school and I got that on my hands and my knees. And I said, Lord Jesus Christ, I said, I've known about you for a long time now. And if you help me get myself out because last jackpot that I've put myself into, I will dedicate the rest of my life to you and asked what happened late in life.

Speaker 2:18:32How has your faith impacted while you are here? Uh, my faith was impacted so much by just a continuing to have faith, you know, it's tiny as a mustard seed. I learned, you know, now when I carried myself in that manner each and every day, just because of the good things that are happening in my life. And I'm just going to say back in my drinking days, I wasn't praying, but when bad things were happening, and I don't want to say bad things so much, you know, but you know, a lot. We disgracing myself, but the, my family's name arrived wrecking cars or you know, doing some butter things, uh, you know, during my drinking days then I was not on my hands and my knees praying the board that I don't want to live like this anymore. But my paints was restored as tiny as a mustard seed and we all know how small mustard seed is that I'm gonna thank the Lord for everything and all that I go through in life.

Speaker 2:19:28So when a good time to come, I think the Lord, when a not so good times, and I don't even call them bad times anymore because the bad times for me, we're back in the day, waking up on a Sunday morning, being hungover. Here's my 80 year old mom knocking on her door. Not only checking on me but offering me a couple of dollars to go get the edge off because I've been out drinking the night before. What kind of life was I live in then? Not too good of a one. Not too good of a one. And I'm thankful not only for the light of life to get me plugged in with therapy and that to be able to go get this stuff out of my system and talk about it, you know, I'm not going to stay stuck on my past. How long were you in the program?

Speaker 2:20:11How long were you a. let me see. I was ready to go in about a year's time, thankfully. And I shared this with a lot of my support group and everybody got to come in contact with nowadays and for all the believers out there are nonbelievers to Christ is going to place people in our lives that are able to see things to. We're not able to see. So my case manager concerts at the time, I said, I'm ready to go, you know, ready to get moving and move on with my life. You know what I'm thankful for, what the light of life has done for me. And he looked at me and said, you're not ready to go anywhere. He said, you know, we've given you a six month extension. You know, why don't you ride it out and stay with us, you know, a pretty 18 month period and then, you know, by the time, the 18 months, 18 months and that was up and then I was ready to go. I was ready because of all the tools and that, that I've taken out of this place, you know, where did you go? Where I'm currently at now in my apartment, in downtown Pittsburgh.

Speaker 1:21:18Awesome. So you moved out. Did you have a job at the time?

Speaker 2:21:21Yeah, it was working at A. Yeah, I was working at a prominent bread company on the north side. Yep.

Speaker 1:21:26And so now today you are on staff at light of life. You work in the kitchen, correct. Um, I know a lot of people listening probably know you get to know a lot

Speaker 2:21:36a, your job. I hope you do. If you don't know me, come on down and meet me. It made all my coworkers, because when I spoke to team I, there's no I in team anymore lipids and you know, whether I'm here or not lifestyle going to go on,

Speaker 1:21:51but you make an impact not just to the residents and to the people you serve, but to the volunteers that come through as well. And um, could you tell us how you came onto staff? Like how did that process happen?

Speaker 2:22:01Uh, so what had happened was in 2016 former corporate buy in here, uh, he wind up passing away of cancer. So my supervisor at the time, now, he came to me on three occasions where two of the occasions he stated to me, he's like hot, you know, I'm over here doing a spot myself. I would like you to come on and, you know, bd assistant over here don't understated doing while, you know, I followed all my mum's coattails and that when she was talking I said I can call for know maybe four or five, but I can't cook for the masses. And you know, he basically stayed at, well, you know, if you make your decision, what I thought it was like I'd done prior in my past was family friends and loved ones that I was close with. You know, I blew him off. Like, AH, get out of here.

Speaker 2:22:50You're just kidding around. So the third time actually in 2006, I him an arb or walking across the street bridge, uh, because I'm a fan fest, was in the city of Pittsburgh baseball because the all star game was in Pittsburgh that year. So we got on, we got at the end of the ninth street bridge and he physically put his hands on my shoulders. It turned me around and said Hi. She said, I'm not kidding with you. He said, we do want you to come on board, you know, and be my assistant over her. And I said to him, you know, about art can court reporter reply, but I don't know how to corporate a masters in that. And he said, you know, don't even worry about it. You said, you know, we'll train you on site. I said, well, at least let me do this because you know, a lot of people that I'm not afraid to share what they know. My job history due to me being a, a non functional alcoholic in my past, I've lost a lot of those good jobs. So at least with the prominent bread company I was working with, I wanted to go out on good terms with them. I said, at least let me get them, you know, two week notice and I'll be on board. So they brought me on board. I'm on August seventh of 2006.

Speaker 1:24:04Wow, that's awesome. I'm so glad. So what are some of your favorite things about your job, about your daily working environment and what you get to do? Just, you know what I'm,

Speaker 2:24:17you know, a person very near and dear to me, him and his wife, uh, uh, the, you know, part of my support group,

Speaker 2:24:27you know, my buddy, uh, he explained to me, he's like, he said, do you know the difference between God and get? I says, no, can you sit me down and explained it to me? He said, sure. He says, you know what, in life you don't got to do anything you don't want to do, but he said, get. He said you could shoot her an an honor each and every day when you get to go up and you get to go to the implication of employment, do you love so dearly each and every day, and that was explained differently to make, but you know, whether it be here at work or you know, elsewhere, everybody got, come in contact with that. You know what I am? First and foremost, I'm a child of God. I'm a brother, I'm a brother in law. I'm an uncle, I'm a great uncle. I'm a friend. I'm a mentor, you know, and hopefully for others, you know, I just continue to lead by good example. And what more can I ask for in life, you know what I mean?

Speaker 1:25:28Do you have any specific memories that you want to share of your time working here?

Speaker 2:25:33Which would be what would be here until next year already house. So, um, yeah, one of our residents who would, uh, let me see,

Speaker 2:25:46I think he got her, been to the program approximately three years ago, so on the west side of our building, which used to be the old smoking areas, we call what, you know, this gentleman had been out there and he come from a different program and let me see, he had a bought seven or eight bags of luggage did he was odd or, and through because you know, when he entered it into the program, I guess, you know, that will be too much for our program here or whatever, but he just had an over abundance of code, clothes, clothing and first and foremost. So I thought he played for the steelers because half of us guaranteed he handles all steelers fan. So that was my personal meeting with them, whatnot and introduced himself. So the next day I come back into the work and the same gentleman had approached me, said Hodge, can I say something to you?

Speaker 2:26:35I said, sure, yes you may. He said, you know something? He said, I appreciate our talk we had yesterday. I really like you, but he said, can I tell you something? I said, sure. He said, you know what, you're loud. So I said, can you imagine this? Lot less now that I'm so times that by 10 back in the day when I was drinking and him and I, we've been, we've been friends and brothers ever since and he's still on our program, you know, in so many men in here. I just, you know, have a really good relationship with them.

Speaker 1:27:07You spent a lot of time together and again, I want to point out it's the men in the program, but I've heard so many people that have gotten to volunteer with you and it really touches them. Just getting TV around you and see the joy that you have a new job. And did you give really good advice? Like you have a lot of wisdom to offer people.

Speaker 2:27:26Oh, I hope so.

Speaker 1:27:27You do. You do. You made such a difference and as a colleague and friend you'd make a difference to me.

Speaker 2:27:32I actually, I ordered that. Like I said, you know, at my age right now as I sit here today, you know, with a lot of clarity in my life when I went, you know what, I'm probably started wiping out mayor clean and you know, seeing their print laid that at the age of 55, I like live to be taken seriously. I mean for myself, it's not to be taken for granted anymore. Like I'll share with a lot of people. If you have any differences author, let's get them all on a table. Let's get Mr and let's keep it moving. That'd be like if I offended somebody, I'm okay with that. Not even being able to accept my apology, it least deep in my heart because I know I had peace in my life now with back in the day like I'll share with you. It was nothing but chaos and turmoil did apply to somebody because there's days that are going to take the home, log out of my eye and you know, and ask for forgiveness with people being able to forgive me. But even if I went to a person for forgiveness and they weren't able to forgive me, at least I know in my heart that I tried and award honors those who do try. That's what he wants us to do, is continue to

Speaker 1:28:42try. Well, how do you have anything that you'd want to share that you didn't get a chance to with the people that are listening to anything at all about Lidl? Fife about life in general. Anything that you didn't get a chance to say.

Speaker 2:28:54I don't know if I could say it is, but at the age of 35, I'm ready to get back out into the dating. I go ladies out there that would like to go a lot. What am I favorite spots out? There was a hamburger joint and a blue. They'd make phenomenal here in Parker. So anybody likes it? Eddie ladies, her live a life to go off or anything. Just to shut me up.

Speaker 1:29:20Your numbers are going to skyrocket. Hey, Hallelujah. One of my favorite thing is I'm with you. Is Your prayers. Would you bind clothes in our time together in a prayer?

Speaker 2:29:29Oh absolutely. A crisis in heavenly father, uh, first and foremost would like to thank you for blessing us with another day like something we certainly don't for granted anymore. We thank you for laughing, run our lives, Lord Jesus Christ, Psa, because sometimes our heart ache in sorrow is going to show up, but it's about to seven letter word that we'd love to use. It's all about the choices in life that we make and hard choices are to continue to pick up our cross and follow you. And we're so thankful for that because you know our blessings upon this ministry and others, Lord Jesus Christ would just want to say our graciousness and all thankfulness for what you have done. Lord Jesus Christ. She each and every day how you see us through our day, Lord Jesus Christ. And uh, we just want to continue or remain humble what you met with a in our lives, Lord Jesus Christ. And we put our pants on one leg at a time like everybody else does. And we're no different than anybody else, Lord Jesus Christ. But we can just start, you know, Sean, you're radiant light upon others from us and we're so thankful for that. Did you just continue to lead by good example, Lord Jesus Christ and show how you do transform lives each and every day that miracles happen and we're so thankful for that. So Satan get behind me because Christ Jesus has it and we give you an only you are lord and Savior, all appraising on or glory.

Speaker 4:31:02Thank you. Thanks for listening to light of life rescue missions podcast. Hope unveiled. We hope you join us next time for another story of hope and change. Yeah.

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