By Christian Devantier —
As so often happens, Jason Rangel became the father he hated.
As a child, he once even called the cops on his drug-addicted, violent father.
“I seen my dad not in his right mind. I was scared,” he remembers on a 700 Club video. “My dad was in jail when I was going through puberty. I remember not having him there when I needed him.”
Jason’s aunt took him to church. He found stability, hope and sanity there. He even talked to God. But the demons of his childhood traumas pulled him away from God. In his 20s, he found self-value and meaning by pursuing girls.
“I really became sexual with females. I really just couldn’t get enough. I was having sex with my first girlfriend, and it progressed from there to the next girlfriend and the next girlfriend.”
After he got married, he continued having affairs and fathered two children. But because he was unfaithful to the mother of his children, she took the kids and left him, heading for California. He also was in and out of jail.
“It was just a real tumultuous relationship. I was always unfaithful to her,” Jason says. “I just didn’t care about my children. I wasn’t a good father. I was caught up with the world, caught up with these guys that I was hanging out with.”
After he lost his kids, Jason got turned on to drugs by a coworker. “The loss of my kids affected me negatively,” he says. “I was struggling to cope. I was out of control.”
By now, he was married to another woman, which whom he had two addition children.
“I thought I was entitled to drinking and drugs and being unfaithful,” Jason says. “It was a chain reaction that got worse and worse through the years. When my kids were 9 or 10 years old, I remember them coming home, and I’d be high at the house.”
That’s when he looked in the mirror — and saw his earthly father’s image.
“I remember my children seeing me high,” he says. “I remember reflecting back to my childhood. I had seen the same thing growing up, I felt really bad. I did my best to take care of my children. But I was also a selfish father.”
And he walked in all the sins of his father, which he had done before him: and his heart was not perfect with the LORD his God (1 Kings 15:3)
Not long after, his wife filed for divorce and took the kids away. Jason was alone again and devastated.
”I took it really hard,” he says. “I felt worthless. Every time I would use drugs, I would think about my failures as a teenager. It was just like an endless cycle of hurt and pain and hopelessness. I felt my life was over. I really thought it was time to end it. I didn’t want to live anymore.”
Before he could kill himself, God intervened.
“I remember sitting in my car. For whatever reason, God spoke to me right there. It opened up my mind for five seconds. I seen things for what they really were. And I felt in my heart a sensation of hope.”
For the first time in many years, he prayed: “God, I’m sorry for everything I’ve done. I’m sorry for hurting my family. I’m sorry for not giving my life to You.”
“I gave my life back to God,” he said.
God gave him a new start. Jason was set free from drugs and sex addiction. God’s love and satisfaction gave him what he was always looking for.
Praise be to God, Jason has his kids back in his life.
Then I will make up to you for the years that the swarming locust has eaten. (Joel 2:25)
“Once you put God in your heart and ask Him to reside there, he takes away all the emptiness that you fee. He’s definitely done that for me. He’s given me hope.”
If you want to know more about a personal relationship with God, go here
Christian Devantier studies at the Lighthouse Christian Academy near Culver City in Los Angeles.