My name is Lauren, I’m a graduate of Big Fish Ministries (BFM), and this is my story…
Sick of Being Who I Was
I had been in and out of addiction for 25 years. I did lots of kinds of drugs — any kinds — to support my habit. I went into sex trafficking to get my fix. I was gonna end up in a ditch dead or in prison my whole life.
Everything was downhill. I was so sick of being who I was, of not seeing my kids. Everyone had turned their backs on me, including my family. I wanted a change.
I prayed: “God, I know you’re real. I need help.” Then I found out about BFM just by Googling “rehabs in Baldwin County.”
I walked into another rehab, but I felt it wasn’t right, wasn’t where I was supposed to be. When I went to BFM, I felt the Holy Spirit. It was in-depth and personal, with lots of classes. Mostly, I felt a sense of peace.
Hard, Messy, Beautiful
Still, your first 30 days are the roughest. I was so broken, I didn’t do good around a lot of people. You have no outside contact and you’re winding down. You have to decide if this is what you really want in life. But you get to be with a mentor and heal from deep wounds and traumas. You concentrate on yourself and get close to God. Everyone makes you feel like they care, like it’s a family. It’s warm. That’s what a lot of people need because none of us are used to having that.
It’s hard in the beginning, messy in the middle, and beautiful at the end. You’re changing your whole life. As you go, you get more privileges and responsibilities, even life coaching. I loved it.
It’s important that the word gets out about BFM. People can turn here and Big Fish would do anything and everything to help them through. The courts know all about it, and people come to the program from prison. I’d recommend it to anybody. The good word is: You can change.
When You Have God First
I graduated in December 2020, and the year has been awesome. My whole life has changed. I’m restored with my family. My mom and I, after not talking for eight years, are talking and she’s back in my life. I changed my “people, places and things.” I kept God first in my life and have had no fallbacks. God gets the glory for that. I got a job as a caregiver, and I’m headed back to school: When I get my transcripts, I plan to study business management and criminal justice.
I love to minister and speak life to people, and I’m still plugged in. I’m an inspiration as a mentor for some of the other women in Big Fish. They can call me day or night, and it makes me feel good that they can trust me. With me being a walking example, they know they can do it.
I want to speak into broken people, and let them know where I was and that they can lay that old life down. People care about you and love you. Keep your heart open. In this new life — being sober — you’ll be so much happier.
You know, so many people are scared of the change cause all they know is a dark road. But if you give it a chance, there’s a better, awesome life compared to what you’re going through now. It’s a weight lifted off. When you have God first, you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.