“The lowest point in my life was finding my father dead in his bed when I was fourteen. He had just had open heart surgery,” said Dennis. When Dennis was three days old, he was adopted. When Dennis was a young boy, his adoptive father would take him on all-weekend camping and fishing trips. Dennis also described how his dad was very involved in all aspects of his life. After Pee-wee games, his father would take the boys out and pay for everyone’s lunch and do many other special things like that for Dennis. “I didn’t think there was a God after my father passed away,” said Dennis.
Dennis’ mother worked and was withdrawn and quiet, so Dennis was left to cope with his grief on his own. Three months after finding his father, Dennis started using meth. Later in life, he began dealing drugs. He soon began believing the lie: ‘He wasn’t worth anything.’ Dennis dragged his mistakes and failures everywhere he went. Not knowing how to fill the void of the loss of his father was a root cause of Dennis’ wrong and sinful choices. Some of these choices sent him to the penitentiary.
In 2005, Dennis met a woman that he eventually married. The love for this woman and the hope of a brighter future inspired Dennis in 2006 to become drug-free, and he has remained drug-free since then. When he stopped using drugs, he stopped spending time with his drug friends, which left him without any friends. As a way to fill the void, he would drink. It was a very unconscious thing, but over the course of six years he became an alcoholic. In 2010, his mother and sister, who was twenty-one years older than he, both passed away within 30 days of each other. Not knowing how to deal with his grief, Dennis reverted to some of his old ways, causing him to go back to prison.
Before he went to prison, he went to church and was baptized. During imprisonment, he attended four years of Bible study. His wife met another man while he was in prison and divorced Dennis. While in the penitentiary, Dennis applied to be part of the New Beginnings program at Faith Mission. Dennis said, “Going through the New Beginnings program has been part of God’s Amazing Grace for me. I’ve learned to lean on God. I’ve learned I have a friend in Jesus.”
For most of Dennis’ life, he thought he wasn’t worth anything. Now he knows that God finds him worthy of His love. “I’ve got hope now. I can see a future,” shared Dennis. He now spends his time encouraging the homeless by being the kitchen manager at Faith Mission and serving the homeless meals.
Dennis asked we pray that he can have the opportunities to make a life in Wichita Falls. “I’ve seen more compassion in Wichita Falls than any other place I’ve lived,” said Dennis. “There are a lot of good people here.”