“Don’t Wait to Reach Out to God”

“Don’t Wait to Reach Out to God”

As we prepare to expand our Center for Women & Children in Indianapolis, we want to share stories of transformation and hope. Many thanks to our volunteer and guest author, Alex Pollock, for interviewing our ladies and telling their stories.

Debilitating addiction

Loni met her first husband and was married at age 21. She had her first son, but her marriage ended soon after. “By this point, I had been getting in trouble with the law,” she said, “getting DUIs.”

Her DUIs eventually landed her in prison, where she served five months. When she got out, she met her current husband. They soon married and the family grew. The couple lived with their four boys, but Loni was suffering. “I kept going back,” she said. “At this point, my use was debilitating. It was affecting my parenting and causing a lot of other problems in my life. After we got married, things were rocky. Up and down because of my issues and because of his.”

The breaking point

In February 2017, Loni and her husband separated and she lost her home. She went to stay with a friend and her brother. It was there that Loni was introduced to heroin. “I knew I was going to lose my children completely,” she said, “lose my husband completely.”

Six months later, she came to Wheeler’s Center for Women & Children (CWC) and joined the Higher Ground addiction recovery program.

Learning to trust

Even after coming to Wheeler, Loni had a lot of work ahead. “The program didn’t start working for me until I started to give up control and trust the people in leadership,” she said. While in Higher Ground, Loni was given the safety, time, and space she needed to address the root cause of her substance abuse and focus on total life change through a relationship with her Savior. Through the uniquely supportive environment and holistic approach offered in Higher Ground, she learned skills to manage her finances, health, relationships, anger, etc.

Now stable, Loni looks forward to a bright future of service; she’s working toward becoming a member of Wheeler’s Equip program. Equip allows graduates of the Higher Ground addiction recovery program to work toward helping others overcome their hardships. Loni hopes to serve others by going on mission trips when she finishes her time at Wheeler, and hopes to continue to care for her family.

Her advice to others struggling through addiction: “I would say, don’t wait to reach out to God. Wheeler is great, but it’s nothing without its Christ-centeredness. That’s what makes the program so special.”

Thank you for caring for the guests of Wheeler Mission. To help us grow our Center for Women & Children and provide help to even more women like Loni, go here.