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Helping Up Mission
Transforming Broken Men, Building A Better Baltimore
Transforming Broken Men, Building A Better Baltimore
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"I came here in 2001 cause I was addicted to cocaine. Back then, all the men in the program slept on this chapel floor. I remember pigeons flying around in the rafters - it was before all the renovations. I've been clean now for 17+ years. God has restored so many things - I have great relationships with my grandkids. I reconciled with my wife and we've now been married for 40 years. A few years ago I went back to school and now I'm a minister at a church up on Belvedere. God is good!" ----- Andrew, an early graduate of our Spiritual Recovery Program, still going #strong https://buff.ly/2vya5e8
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"For so long I lived only at night... Under the cover of darkness was where I did my work. Coming back from the bar drunk, I was ashamed. I grew up in Annapolis, so I've always been around the water... It's the sound, the feeling, the cleanness of just being right on the edge, where the water meets the land, and the sun coming up. There's a connection of all things coming together, and in that I find my connection with God, even if I don't know that's what I'm seeking. In outdoor settings, away from some of the hustle, alone - it's communion. I can commune with my Higher Power and He can reach me without distraction. It's definitely where I do some of my best work." ----- Teddy, 6 months #clean and #sober, writes poetry at sunrise on the dock at Fell's Point Check out a short video of one of Teddy's poems at the link in our profile! #poetry #fellspoint #baltimore #waterfront #soberlife #sobermovement #faith #stepwork #heardatHUM
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"When we're children, and our parents tell us not to touch the stove, we touch it anyway... And that's how I feel alcohol was. It was a part of my journey, much like a snake; I respect it, and it's not gonna be a part of my life anymore. I often say that my sobriety date is my humanity date. It's when I became a man again. It's when I became human, and I was able to love myself and love others through the love of God in Christ. My car is always open, and any man that wants to go to a meeting anywhere in the area can get in my car. They just have to come and do it, they have to want it. And we go all around Maryland. I tell the guys that we have the opportunity to change one life today, to make one person feel loved. And we take that forward to different churches and different meetings, and it's starting to come around where those faces are ending up here (at HUM). We have the opportunity to show through our mistakes, with the grace of God, how to give back and take some humility out of it all." ----- Drew, 571 days #sober, is #givingback as a staff member and fellow human being at HUM Check out Drew and 2 other men working #step12 in the video link in our profile! #soberlife #recovery #love #heardatHUM
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“I was an angry person, filled with a lot of hate. The source of my pain was growing up in a very violent household. I watched my mother take brutal beatings, constantly. It was normal for me to see that… and I developed a deep hatred for my stepfather. When I got around 11 or 12 years old, I started plotting how I would kill him. The hate was really deep-seated, because my mother was my everything… Shame and guilt set in, because I couldn’t help her. I wanted to help her so bad, but I was too young to do anything about it, and it left me feeling real powerless. It’s almost indescribable the hate that I had for him. I was coming home off of incarceration, and I didn’t know that my stepfather was suffering from stage 4 cancer. I went to visit my mom, and when I stepped inside the house and looked across the table, I saw my stepfather sitting there. But he didn’t appear to me as the man I’d always hated. At that moment – and to this day I can’t really describe what took place – but I come to feel and believe that God allowed me to see him through His eyes, and at that moment, the hate was transformed to forgiveness, and I found out that forgiveness is just as powerful as love. And in his last days, the man that I swore to hate, that one day I was gonna kill, I was changing his diapers. I was washing him, bathing him, I was carrying him literally in my arms… I really had it in my heart that I was gonna kill him. But God transformed that hate, and allowed me to see that man for who he is – one of His children. And I was always asking for people to forgive me for all the things that I did, but I wasn’t gonna forgive him. And that’s when true forgiveness became physical and took on a form. It wasn’t just words, it was real. Forgiveness became an action. Just as love is an action, I found out: so is forgiveness.” ----- Wayne, 594 days #clean and #sober, shares his amazing story of #forgiveness and #love #soberlife #family #abuse #hate #shame #forgiven #forgiving #loveisaverb #heardatHUM
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“Opiates were my drug of choice – raw heroin. I couldn’t live with it and I couldn’t live without it. I had been doing really out of character things –I had lost the house to bankruptcy, lost my job, totaled my vehicle – my life was falling apart and snowballing out of control. I stayed at HUM for the first time for 5-6 months. I thought I was OK, but I only stayed clean until my first paycheck. I learned that relapse doesn’t have to be the end of recovery. Fear keeps a lot of guys from making the decision to surrender. There’s embarrassment and shame. Getting over the guilt and shame, and coming back through the door of HUM was part of a spiritual awakening for me. God’s really been working in my life and people can see that. It’s brought my family together – we’re all attending church together on Sunday, which has been remarkable. I don’t react to things the way I would in the past. In the past when traumatic things happened, I would have used. Not today. I don’t deserve and couldn’t repay anyone for what I have now. But I’m becoming the person that God intended me to be.” -----Matt, 365 days #clean and #sober Map who's running in the next year's Boston Marathon! You can read his story, or listen to Matt’s interview with Pastor Gary, at the link in our profile: http://buff.ly/1psIZyM #grace #runner #runninglife #marathon #bostonmarathon #addiction #shame #heroin #opiates #surrender #heardatHUM
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"It's been so long since I've just been able to be out on the water. Casting a line, not worried about catching anything, watching the osprey... there's no measure of the therapeutic value of this for me." ----- Jack, 105 days #clean & #sober, on our spring retreat #fishingsober #soberlife #fishing #chesapeakebay
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Poem: What Have I Lost - Part 2 My skull has lost some pieces My back has lost some skin Though my head has gained a thesis On the things I could begin My feet were torn to shreds Slowly skin grows back But know inside my head Is what I've gained, not what I lack To gain a brand new person A person I could love This is what I'm learning Much respect for up above To gain a brand new wisdom Of a person learned to be I guess I shouldn't miss him 'Cause that person wasn't me. Phil, 45 days #sober, drops the mic
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"I was at another drug rehab, and I'd been writing poetry for about 2 years following a traumatic brain injury, amnesia, and a lot of things... I was very lost. So my counselor at the time told me to write about what I'd lost. So I wrote this poem. Eventually I had it tattooed on my arms. Poem: What Have I Lost? A loss in sense of being What was I to do? A loss of all I stood for A loss of God knows who Is there much missed out on? Much I couldn't know? Is there really anything gone Or gained which I could show? A loss of who I wasn't A loss of who I was A loss which I just couldn't Accept to be the cause What am I to stand for? What things have I still kept? A loss I'd understand more If I knew those things still left The rest of the poem in the next post --------
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"I was in prison for over 10 years. Now I'm two semesters away from graduating college, and I'm a community organizer. I'm still trying to define who I am. It's become part of my purpose to give back." ----- Charles, just over a year #clean & #sober, being interviewed by @mozellfilms for an epic new HUM overview video #recovery #soberlife #backtoschool #heardatHUM
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“I’m from Cherry Hill - it was a rough neighborhood to grow up in. I’ve got tattoos of the names of seven of my cousins. Mooka died of cancer when he was 24. Lil Tye is paralyzed. Antwon was shot by police in 1985 when he pulled out his wallet. They’re my family - I carry them with me.” ----- Jermauh, 3 weeks #clean and #sober, has #tattoos as memorials #tattooTuesday #Baltimore #CherryHill #heardatHUM
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