Solomon’s Story of Transformation

“This is how life is, and this is how it’s going to be. This is just who you are.”

Those were the words Solomon said to himself when he was suffering on Atlanta’s streets. He didn’t believe change was possible, and self-pity was his identity. For eight years, Solomon suffered out there — in heat and cold, rain and snow. During summer, his mind was fixated on air conditioning. “I’d look for any place to get out of the heat,” Solomon remembered, “even if I got chased out a minute later, it was worth it.”

But that suffering never compared to the pain Solomon felt on the inside. “My problem was, I could not come to terms with the abuse I suffered in childhood,” he said. “I went through things no child should go through. That’s why I started medicating with drugs and alcohol,’’ he added.

He continues: “Unfortunately, the more I used, the more I blamed everyone else for all of my problems. Addiction cost me everything I had: work, relationships, home…”

When his life hit rock bottom, Solomon would come to Atlanta Mission for a break from the streets — for a meal, a bed, a shower. But he’d leave just as quickly.

Long, Hard Look in the Mirror

Three and a half years ago, Solomon had a God-given revelation: “I began to question why bad things kept happening to me. I came to realize that I was the source of every broken relationship. That’s when I stopped blaming everyone else.”

Pretty soon, Solomon decided to stay at Atlanta Mission for longer than a night. He entered our Choose Help Services, joined a Bible study, and started volunteering in the kitchen. “Everyone here was so encouraging,” he said. “I met with a therapist who helped me forgive the people who hurt me. Until then, I hadn’t understood what a powerful tool forgiveness actually was. Suddenly, the pain from my childhood was gone.”

Today, Solomon is a new man. He’s employed and he’s back on his feet. Relationships have healed, and his outlook is entirely changed. Looking back, Solomon said, “There was a time when I thought I would always be homeless and miserable. I was rescued and saved at Atlanta Mission. Now I have joy and peace I never knew.”

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