Bible-based drug rehab center changes lives of drug users, gang members
A rehabilitation center in Idaho is changing the lives of drug addicts and troubled youth with the word of the gospel.
Victory Home in Twin Falls, Idaho is run by Pastor Tony Lopez and his wife Norma. It has been in operation for many years and has helped to turn around the lives of many troubled people, according to its website.
One of them, Roy Araiza Jr., drank beer and smoked crack with his father. When he turned 14 he was trading crack for meth until he ended up serving a seven-month jail term, Times-News said.
When he was let go on parole, he went back to his old crowd, cut off his ankle monitor and then was arrested again. But this time things were different. A judge sent him to Victory Home, a live-in treatment facility, Times-News said.
Today, at age 22, Araiza is clean of drugs and is being tapped by Lopez to lead the expansion program of the facility, Times-News said.
Victory Home is a bible-based, live-in rehabilitation facility that gives its services for free. It is completely dependent on donations. According to its website, Victory ministers to anyone “lost and hurting,” including the homeless, gang members and drug addicts.
The program at Victory is designed to help participants gain skills in awareness, sociability and accountability on a daily basis. Eventually, the program seeks to help participants return to the mainstream as productive citizens, the website said.
One way of doing this is to provide a family environment—something many of the program participants have never really known.
Lopez told Times-News, “(The participants) watch you for validation: They want to know what you are selling is real. The only way to prove that is by showing them love and living a life for God.”
Araiza was touched by this family approach. He told Times-News, “This home offered me a spiritual father, a spiritual mother. It’s offered me a family. That’s why we call it a Victory Home.”
Victory Home’s website has the bible verse 1 Cor. 1:27-29 which says, “But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.”
The verse helps to explain Victory’s mission, to “transform crime and drug infested neighborhoods through the gospel of Jesus Christ,” the website said. The Home is an intervention point where participants begin to experience transformation. Oftentimes, the participant tries to give back, volunteering to help others who are experiencing what they had gone through.
The website said that Victory welcomes all people and provides an environment of “unconditional acceptance balanced with accountability and discipline.”
In the future, Lopez would like to do more of what he is doing now, and envisions expansion. He told Times-News that he is hoping that his current facility can be a training center for life skills such as holding down a job, while a second facility could be the treatment center. He also dreams of having a ranch where participants can be sustained on “beans, rice and Jesus Christ,” as they learn how to return to the mainstream.
Araiza told Times-News that drug addiction can happen to the wealthiest as well as the poorest of people. He said he is currently mentoring someone from a wealthy family who is addicted to heroin. A second person he is counseling is addicted to meth and ran with gangs on the street.
But Araiza said the same can be said of Jesus Christ. He told Times-News, “If they surrender their way to God, and allow God to guide them, they can begin to improve.” With improvement comes hope that they can return to becoming productive members of society.