Hi, I’m Marcus. I’m 25 years old and I used drugs for about 10 years. I started out just smoking weed when I was 14 and it quickly went down hill from there. By age 16 I got arrested at school for possession of morphine and adderall and I was expelled from school. I was smoking a lot of spice (synthetic marijuana) around that time. I was expelled again, this time due to pot. When I turned 18 I started doing coke, molly, and dabbling with Roxy’s. At 19 I tried meth and it was game over, I was instantly hooked. I used meth, molly and spice for about 2 years then I started shooting up meth after I got kicked out of my second rehab. I shot meth for about 3 years. I tried to stop a couple of times but I was still running from the pain inside that was unbearable for me to look at. I used drugs as an escape from the pain of the real world then, one day, the Holy Spirit told me to burn my drugs, get down on my face and repent of my sins. After that experience I began looking for places to seek treatment and the Lord shut the door to every place I tried until I found Renewed Hope Ministries. When I got here I was still in bad shape; very angry, depressed, and full of anxiety but here I learned that drugs were the secondary problem of my sin; unforgiveness. I have learned to forgive and repent before God for my unforgiveness. I have dealt with the pain inside that made me want to use drugs. Now, instead of works of the flesh, I bear fruits of the spirit and I give all the Glory to my savior Jesus Christ, the Father, and the Holy Spirit. I thought I was destined to die a drug addict but Jesus had other plans. I thank God for Renewed Hope Ministries and hope to now help others like me. Don’t give up just give it to God, it all belongs to Him anyway. Remember, Jesus didn’t come to save the righteous but to save the unrighteous. May God bless us on our broken roads and lead us to Him.
My name is Matthew Hill. I’m 29 years old and from Knoxville, TN (Go Volnation!!). I was in active addition since 2008. I struggled for a very long time. Addiction is a thief that stole the life of my brother, Daniel Hill (2018), my sister, Stacy Hill(2014), and my dad, Randy Hill (2018). It almost took my life as well. I have overdosed 12 times and 3 of those times my heart stopped beating but I was brought back to life. The day my brother died, I had also overdosed. I found out that day walking out of the hospital. So if someone says to me, “You don’t know what I’ve been through,” I do know and I can relate! God pulled me out of that life. I want to say thank you to Chris Crumley for allowing God to use him and helping me get into this program. Shout out to my mom Jeana Hensley Hill for never giving up on me and always seeing the best in me, even when I was at my worst. My Nanna, Marty Trewhitt for always wanting the best for me and supporting me. I also want to thank the staff, volunteers and students at Renewed Hope Ministries, especially Bert Crowe for being patient and allowing God to use him. Big shout out to Mountainview Church and Michael Ray Crowe who have been supportive, loving, accepting and never judgmental - We’ve been judged enough! I’m thankful for my new Christian brothers I’ve met here at the ministry, even those who have already graduated or left early: Rusty Tillery, Jacob Jeffery, Roy Lockaby, Robert Martens, Jose Smiley Reyes, David Murray, Jimmy Fleming. Jesus saved my life and put a desire in me to seek after the plans he has for me and not my own. I’m a sinner saved by grace through faith. I’m really excited to see what the Lord has in store for me. There is hope and recovery is possible! If you or someone you know is struggling, reach out and get help.
My name is Jose Smiley Reyes. I was addicted to drugs until God saved me. My addiction was an escape from my life and any other problem I was dealing with. I came to Renewed Hope last December with the help Fred Ramano, who is one of our volunteers. Since coming to Renewed Hope, I have grown more in my relationship with Christ. This year has been a challenge being here, not only for me but for my family. My sister Areli Contreras and my brother Jonas Lavariega have been a huge support in my life. I'm putting God first and prayerfully considering my next steps once I graduate. Since being here I have met Rusty Tillery, Matthew Hill, David Murray and I'm proud to call them my brothers. I want to give a big shout out to my new friends on the Cherokee Reservation for being a huge support. I want to thank Mountainview Church for having a great support for this ministry and myself. They have always given me a big, warm welcome. I also want to thank the staff, students and volunteers at Renewed Hope Ministries. Last but not least, I'm so grateful for the friendship of Robert Martens who has become a big brother to me and also my brother in Christ.
My name is Robert Martens. I'm 38 years old and I've been clean and sober now for 15 months!!! I'm a proud member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. I have 3 kids: Dorian Martens(18), Chaz Martens(10) and Story Martens(7). I was a drug addict in active addiction for 22 years. I struggled going in and out of jails, prison and rehabs since I was 18. Finally, things go so bad, so low and so dark that I had no where to turn but to God. My clean date is June 14, 2018 and I got saved in July of 2018. Since I came to know the Lord, my life has really become something special. I've had the opportunity to speak at a few events and different treatment centers as a guest speaker. Speaking to other addicts and families of addicts is what I believe my calling is. It gives me strength to give others hope. If you're reading this and you're struggling with addiction or you have loved ones that struggle, don't give up hope. I am proof that we do recover. I would like to thank the staff at Renewed Hope Ministries - Marketplace and the staff of Kanvwotiyi for helping me so much on my path. I want to give a big shoutout to my mother Darlene Reed, my brother Matthew Martens and my sister Lucy Reed for being strong enough to show me tough love that was needed for me to see how low my life had gotten. A shoutout to pastor and friend Patrick O'Dell for always being there for me spiritually. My brother in Christ and friend Jeremiah Whike for giving me advice and for loving me when I didn't know how to love myself. All my brothers at Renewed Hope: Rusty Tillery, Matthew Hill , Clyde Keen, Roy Lockaby, David Murray, Crawler, and last but not least, my best friend, my roommate, my brother from another mother Jose Smiley Reyes. I got love for all y'all and everybody for that matter. With God all things are possible. Thank you so much for reading this and thank you for your support. Much love, peace out, holla at ya boi Robert "yellawolf" Martens.
My name is Cody Perry. I’m 25 years old and I’m from Sylva, NC. I’ve been in active addiction for the past 10 years until coming to Renewed Hope. I’ve been here 10 months now.
For me, addiction started out as something fun that eventually turned deadly. Before coming to Renewed Hope I overdosed and died twice, but for some reason God wasn’t done with me yet and he brought me back both times. When I came here I wasn’t sure what I was looking for all I knew was that I didn’t want to get high anymore. At the end of myself and completely broken; God started and continues to work on me daily and, for the first time in 10 years, I have hope! I’m eternally grateful for my family, all the Renewed Hope staff and my brothers at the ministry for showing me love and not giving up on me. Most of all, I’m grateful to Jesus for saving my soul and starting the process of changing me into the Godly man I need to be!
“Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.” 1 Timothy 4:12