Chug Garreau
Part 3 of 4

The road to recovery can be long. Everywhere he turned there was alcohol. If you've ever been there, you know what Chug is talking about. So how did he deal with the temptation and ultimately find victory? Listen as he shares how he found the answer.






Chug Garreau - Lakota - Part 3 of 4

And that night there was going to be a… the speaker was a biker, and his name was… they call him Lurch. And Lurch is somewhere around 6’6” and a huge man, and he rode a Harley all his life, so I went to hear his testimony.

And the testimony that he shared was very similar to the things that I experienced in life, and it had such a profound impact upon my life. I could identify with his lifestyle; it just… the words that he shared, the hope that he had, and just his desire to know Christ, and his change after accepting Christ, so deeply affected me that it was as if it was going deep within my heart and breaking up my heart of stone, and a couple of days later I accepted Christ.

And you know, that’s the first time I heard the story of forgiveness. I always… I grew up with the fear of God in that God was… I knew I was doing wrong, and I learned that from an early age, and I knew that I was breaking all the ten commandments, I knew that at an early age, and, as I got older, I knew of no way of getting around that, that I was just getting worse and worse.

And I believed that, of God, the punishment for me was worse and worse, and I didn’t know how to get away from that, but I had never read that… nobody had ever explained to me that Jesus Christ died for my sins on the cross.

And as I read in John 3:17, that ‘He did not come to send His Son into the world to condemn the world but to save the world,’ and that He did not come to condemn me but to save me.

And those were refreshing words, those were words that I had never heard before, and one thing I needed, I needed to be forgiven of all the wrongs I had ever done, and the wrong was to God.

And I accepted God, I accepted His forgiveness through Christ’s death on the cross, and invited Him to come into my life, and I said, “Lord, I believe you died for me. Forgive me for my sins and come into my life and me new.”

And for the first time in my life I felt clean. I felt forgiven, and when I got up from the floor, I wasn’t suddenly glowing or jumping around, or doing, you know, just suddenly change into, you know, doing something different outwardly by my actions, but inwardly, God had done a work in my life, and the very next day I woke up and I remember getting ready, doing something… I can’t remember what I was doing, but I know that I said a cuss word, which up until that time was just every bit a part of my language.

And it dawned on me that I didn’t want to say those words anymore; it felt as if I had a mouth full of gravel, and I remember saying a few more cuss words throughout the day and just feeling very, very uneasy about that, and in a matter of a week, I would say, about 90% of the words that I used were gone from my language.

Now, that wasn’t me the day before; I coulda cared less what I said, but it was the Holy Spirit living within me now that was letting me know that those weren’t good things to say, and that I felt good about not saying them. It was that obedience that I was wanting to… the obedience to God that I would like to have done for years, suddenly I was doing it supernaturally by God’s… under God’s power.

And I quit drinking in ’85, but between ‘85 and 1989 there was still that great longing in my body to want to drink.

Every time I would open up a newspaper there was liquor commercials, advertisements, TV, there was alcohol, billboards there was alcohol, on the streets there was alcohol, in the grocery stores there was alcohol, and I could not get away from that nagging feeling to this is what I still wanted.

A week after I accepted the Lord, I… of course, I didn’t like to go shopping the supermarkets cause we had to cross by the beer and wine to get to the dairy products. That following week, I was standing there and I was getting some… probably buying some butter, and it dawned on me that I had walked through the whole section of alcohol and it was as if I had never seen it. I walked through that whole section of alcohol and it never affected me.

And then it dawned on me that, you know, this is what God had done. God had taken that desire that so haunted me for all those years, He took it out of my life in a moment, upon accepting Christ.

And from that very moment, I look back and see that the advertisements, the billboards, the commercials, anything that had to do with alcohol and drugs, never bothered me again. And I look back and I say that it’s as if I never drank before in my life, but I know all the dangers of it.

And I can only thank God for showing me personally how can He can deal with some of my deepest fears or struggles. And I say, ‘Well, why did He do it?’ Because He loves me! He wanted me to know that He was going to take things and change them from my life.

And so, I think about all those who have been in AA, and I know there’s only one answer… that, you know, that I’m glad that people want to sober up and they can go to places like that, but God’s just got one step, and that’s Jesus Christ, and His Holy Spirit coming inside of you to take that away, take those desires out of your life.

From that ,I remember the change that took place was, every time I heard the word of Jesus on the radio station I wanted to listen to it; you know, I just wanted… that wasn’t me just the week before, and I found that when your accepted Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and you’re born again, I began to experience life as God intended it to be; that I would have a relationship with God and He would begin to show me what new desires, new joys, and He would show Himself to me by, as I would begin to read.

He maybe show me how I’m to love my wife as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her, and how to raise my children, and from that I was able to ask others to forgive me.

I remember my dad, those years that we had… I look back and see the years that he drank, and the abuse that was put upon the family, but I also look, you know, through another look, I seen how I was not a part of the solution, I was a part of the problem, in that I had greatly dishonored my father during those years, even though he was just doing what, you know, living a life that he was living at the time, and I should have still been honoring my father.

My dad came one time to a Jesus festival that we had, and I remember in my heart going up to him and saying, “Dad, you know, forgive me, you know, for what all I’ve done to you as your son; you know, I wasn’t honoring you.” And I wanted to let him know I was sorry about that, and I did want to honor him.

And, you know, there were tears in our eyes, and we, you know, we embraced each other, and you know, he accepted that, and it’s just been a neat way of restoring relationships; you know, God makes that possible.

He restored my relationship with my father, He restored my relationship with my wife; you know, I even just, you know, asked Him to forgive me for all the way I treated her during those years.

And her acceptance of that, of forgiving me and restoring us, we see how the family was beginning to be, through restoration, what God intended a family to be, and that all along this was what He desired for our people, the people of the world, that we can live the life as a family in a Godly manner, a manner in which He intended it to be.

And I thank God that my sons grew up… they remember me smoking, but they seen dad quit, they’ve never had to experience alcohol in their lives in the manner of which I experienced alcohol, and they grew up in our home and seen the things that God was doing in our life. And I thank God that He has granted them an opportunity to see life as He begins to change people, that there’s a greater life, outside of the life they see around them, that others are experiencing.

So God has restored our family, He restored my life, He’s granted me new life, and together, my wife and I, we walk hand in hand with the Lord through this life, and He’s given us a desire to want to share His Word with others so that they too can be… know that God has forgiven them of their sins and that God desires a relationship with them, and that He wants to expose them and empower them to live a Godly life while they’re here upon this earth.

Their hearts are… their hope is set in the heavens eternal, but they can experience that life here on earth, yet even through hard times, difficult times, that God is able to give us that sense of, you know, contentment through this life.

And that’s a life that is free to each and every individual, whether they’re Native American or European or Asian or from any other country.

God’s plan and purpose for life is that we might find our life in Jesus Christ.

(To be continued)