As a young girl Shaneen was shy and never felt like she belonged. In middle school, she saw an opportunity to fit in and started drinking and smoking weed at parties.
In high school, she drank heavily at weekend parties. She set her sights on college and a new life but that all changed one night on the way home from a party. The car crash killed one of her friends. Shaneen was hospitalized with a broken back.
Learning to walk again was a long and discouraging process. She became addicted to opioids, then OxyContin, heroin and cocaine. “How could God allow this to happen,” she thought.
Then it got worse. She was arrested at the doctor’s office where she’d worked for five years. After 12 hours in the detainment center, she thought to herself, “What am I doing? I don’t belong here.”
Her dad helped her get into Teen Challenge but she continued to struggle with cravings until the day she felt God call her to trust him completely. She cried out to God, he heard her prayer, and from that moment on she was free.
Tim never understood why his parents divorced and his family fell apart. Like Shaneen, he became angry and hopeless. Marijuana and alcohol became the constants in his life.
A leg injury ended his college football career. He joined the Marine Corps but was discharged because of his addiction. For the next 10 years, his life spiraled out of control, fueled by anger and depression.
Like Shaneen, Tim entered Teen Challenge and met Jesus. After graduation he went to the Teen Challenge Ministry Institute where he met Shaneen. The two people who came to Teen Challenge lost, discouraged and addicted, discovered the love and joy of serving the God who made it possible.
Today Shaneen and Tim are married and serving in ministry. She works with Northeast of the Well, a ministry that brings hope to women whose lives wouldn’t normally connect with the Word of God. He is a teacher and advisor at Orange County Teen Challenge, helping men whose stories are similar to his before finding God.