Through years of drinking and taking drugs, Eric Tijerina knew how to keep a secret.
He had a great childhood, up until his parents started to struggle and eventually got divorced. They started to become more lenient, and Eric had more freedom to do whatever he wanted. So, the night before a high school dance, he had his first sip of alcohol, “When I took that drink, everything changed for me,” Eric recalled, “I wasn’t shy anymore. I wasn’t afraid of anything. I felt this whole new character come on, and it felt like I could accomplish and do anything.”
After high school, Eric joined the United States Navy and began drinking more. Through the friends he met there, he discovered methamphetamine. Soon, whenever he took a drink, he had to have meth along with it. He couldn’t have one without the other.
He saw rock bottom one morning when he woke up inside a storage unit with a friend, not knowing how he got there.
Eric’s brother told him about Teen Challenge, and soon after he entered the program and started his journey of healing and transformation. Through Teen Challenge, Eric learned to surrender his addictions to God and rebuild his life. He found a community of people who supported him and encouraged him to grow in his faith, “The crazy thing about it is that all of us were all in one accord for the same thing, no matter what background you went through, we all wanted freedom, we all wanted our lives back, we wanted our families back.”
Today, Eric is a changed man, free from his secret addiction. He’s worked at Teen Challenge in many different capacities and in 2022, he became the Supervisor of Operations at the brand-new Antelope Valley Teen Challenge Outreach Center, helping others find the same hope and healing that was offered to him.
Eric’s story is one of the many, many lives impacted by God through the work of Teen Challenge. Thank you, as always, for your support and encouragement. You can make a difference in a life like Eric’s today by scheduling your monthly gift or by making a one-time donation.
God bless you.