Participants: Aaron Chancy (Host), Rocky Mertens
Series Code: TNJ
Program Code: TNJ000056
00:01 The following program discusses sensitive issues.
00:03 Parents are cautioned that some material
00:04 may be too candid for younger children.
00:10 Welcome to The New Journey,
00:11 a program where you meet real life people
00:13 with real life testimonies
00:15 doing real life ministry for Jesus Christ.
00:17 I'm your host Aaron Chancy,
00:19 come join us on The New Journey.
00:52 I like to welcome you back to The New Journey.
00:54 On today's broadcast, we have Rocky Mertens.
00:57 Rocky, we like to thank you for being on the program.
00:59 Thank you, it's a blessing being here.
01:01 Just a general information, Rocky,
01:04 can you give us your age, and where you're from?
01:06 I'm 36 years old,
01:08 and I'm from West County, Alabama.
01:12 What was it like growing up in your home at young age?
01:15 It was pretty rough. Okay.
01:17 I had--
01:19 by the time I was in, I mean, Junior High
01:21 I had five different step-dad's
01:23 and a couple of them were very abusive.
01:27 Me and my older brother, we took a lot of hard,
01:31 knockdown, I guess you could say.
01:34 There was a time when I was 12 years old,
01:36 sitting at the bar with my-- one of my step-dad's,
01:40 eating breakfast and just being quite
01:42 like I usually am and sometimes
01:44 I have an intimidating look on my face.
01:46 Some people say I look like I got a problem or something.
01:49 And apparently that's how he took it,
01:51 and he just slapped me down, off the bar on the floor
01:53 and jumped on top of me and fisting to start--
01:55 he had his fist drew back on me.
01:57 And my older brother,
01:59 he's almost five years older than me.
02:00 He just so happened, well,
02:01 it wouldn't just so happened, I believe God--
02:03 Intervened. Intervened.
02:05 And my brother came in and just and freaked out
02:08 and grabbed him and put him in a chock hold
02:10 and he said, I kind of blacked out,
02:12 I don't remember nothing
02:13 but he says while he was choking him out
02:15 I started hitting him.
02:16 But after that he got up, he woke up, he got up and left,
02:20 and we never had any more problems
02:22 out of him after that.
02:24 It's like a reality check.
02:27 Now you mentioned that you had five different step-dad's.
02:30 What was it like seeing a different--
02:32 a different father figure in the house,
02:35 periodically having five different step-dad's?
02:39 It was kind of shocking as a young child
02:44 because the first one I had,
02:46 my mom and my dad split when I was two
02:49 and my dad worked at this chartered plane.
02:51 Mobile home plane that had uniforms they wore,
02:53 and one day this other man stepped up to the door
02:57 in a uniform like my dad's but he wasn't my dad,
02:59 and he came in and kissed my mom,
03:01 and just took up the role of--
03:04 And it was really-- A real shock.
03:06 Real shock. Yeah. Definitely.
03:09 So growing up in your household,
03:11 five different step-dads, what was the--
03:13 what was the religious background in the house
03:15 or was there any religious background?
03:16 No, there was no.
03:18 Alcohol. Okay.
03:20 So it was a lot of alcohol drinking
03:22 and different things like that going in the house.
03:24 What were some of the negative influences
03:26 surrounding you in your house, outside your house,
03:29 different things like that?
03:30 Oh, it was basically the step-dads.
03:33 I had another step-dad that he was so rough on us,
03:38 he took my brother one time up by the throat
03:41 and stuck him in a burning barrel
03:43 while it was burning.
03:44 And I'm just, you know, I'm like eight years old
03:46 and I'm just standing there just amazed,
03:49 didn't know what to do, freaked out, you know.
03:53 We had some pretty, had some crucial
03:57 or should I say, painful punishments.
03:59 I remember standing in the gravel
04:01 on my knees when I was a kid,
04:02 holding books out like this for something.
04:05 I don't remember what it was, the littlest things.
04:08 If we didn't say yes ma'am or yes sir
04:09 we were in bad trouble.
04:11 And he stood behind me with a belt, you know,
04:14 like it was a whip or something,
04:15 just beating me, let him booze down.
04:17 So that kind of gave up,
04:19 gave a lot of resentment within you
04:21 for each of the different step-dads, correct?
04:24 Well, I can't really pinpoint what it done
04:26 but I've taken some classes
04:28 and what psychologists teaching it,
04:31 they say that it definitely has effect
04:33 on your mind growing up.
04:37 And it has effect on
04:39 your attitude and your character,
04:40 when you get older the things you do.
04:42 Yeah, yeah, the different things shape your life,
04:44 shape what you do later on in life, definitely.
04:47 Now looking back at the negative influences,
04:50 flip the script, what were some of the positive influences
04:53 in your life, if there were any?
04:55 My older brother. Okay.
04:57 And my grandma.
05:00 My grandma took me to charge a lot.
05:01 She was--
05:02 she was probably one of the most mighty man
05:06 or women of God I've ever seen in my life.
05:09 You know, she prayed at 9:00, 12:00 and 3:00 every day,
05:12 no matter what she was doing.
05:14 Three times a day. No matter what.
05:15 She was dedicated to it. Okay.
05:18 And my brother, he was there form,
05:20 my older brother, I got three brothers,
05:22 but my older brother,
05:23 he's my only full-blooded brother
05:24 and he's been there my whole life.
05:26 And he was always a role model because, I mean,
05:29 he taught me how to fight, he taught me, you know,
05:33 how to, just taught me about life like sports
05:36 and taught me about things
05:39 that young teenagers need to know growing up.
05:41 Yeah. Definitely, definitely.
05:43 So your brother was kind of like a father figure to you,
05:45 a positive father figure to you.
05:47 Now you mentioned that one of your family members
05:50 used to take you to church.
05:52 What was the type of church
05:53 that your grandmother used to take you to?
05:56 A Pentecostal church? Okay.
05:58 How was it growing up going to a Pentecostal church?
06:01 It was kind of breathtaking, I guess,
06:04 everybody jump around, speak in tongues,
06:06 and getting so excited.
06:08 Okay, okay.
06:10 Seem like they really, they seem like
06:12 they really has something going on in there.
06:13 Yeah, okay.
06:15 Now you mentioned that there was a lot of alcohol,
06:18 alcoholism going on in the household when,
06:20 at a younger age.
06:21 At what age did you begin
06:23 to use narcotics, drinking drugs,
06:25 different things of that nature?
06:26 Twelve years old.
06:28 Okay, at 12 years old.
06:29 And what did you what did you begin with at 12 years old?
06:31 And talk about the feeling of that you got from it
06:35 and why did you, why did you begin doing it?
06:37 Was it influences around you,
06:39 was it just because it was there?
06:41 Shed some light upon that.
06:42 Yeah, I started smoking weed and drinking alcohol at 12.
06:46 That was the easy things to get to
06:48 because, I mean, weeds pretty common.
06:50 A lot of people smoke the joint thing,
06:52 we don't do anything like it but started out,
06:54 getting out of my buddy's parents rooms,
06:58 the stuff I get when they go on to work.
07:00 And it just seemed like, I guess,
07:04 one thing that I always tried to blame it on was
07:07 because my dad always smoked pot
07:10 and had long hair and I just think,
07:12 I just thought that was cool.
07:14 And, but really what drove me to getting high was
07:17 having the ability to control my emotions
07:19 on my own,
07:21 kind of made me feel like I had more than an extra,
07:24 you know, more than a human power about me,
07:27 something super human or something like that,
07:28 I guess, I don't know.
07:31 Other than the marijuana,
07:32 what were some of the other drugs
07:34 you eventually got involved with?
07:36 Later on I started using meth real heavy.
07:40 Now talk a little bit about meth.
07:42 I've never used meth before, my drugs of choice were
07:45 like cocaine, alcohol, use a little heroin,
07:48 marijuana, ecstasy, prescription pills,
07:51 used to smoke a pack a day but I'd never done meth before.
07:56 Talk about that, the feeling of meth,
07:58 and you know, what's the difference
07:59 that you noticed between that and say, marijuana?
08:03 Meth gives you, it sharpens your mind,
08:06 keeps you from getting fatigue.
08:09 You can go for days and you just,
08:11 you can think so much clearer,
08:14 you can figure stuff out that you don't,
08:16 you've never even deal with before.
08:19 Working on stuff is amazing to the point
08:22 that you actually find stuff to work on just to
08:25 because it let you amaze yourself
08:27 and how your mind will figure the stuff out.
08:30 All right, so you've giving
08:31 some of the positive effects of the drug,
08:32 what are some of the negative effects of the drug?
08:36 Negative is you spend all your money on it,
08:39 you'll lose you know, your financial lifestyle
08:42 will go down the drain, lose everything you have
08:45 and you eventually lose you family.
08:48 And I was so hooked on it that's when I started cocaine
08:51 because I didn't have the finances to buy it,
08:55 so I could buy the materials,
08:57 it's a lot cheaper to make all I wanted.
09:00 And then it get, it gets even worse though that.
09:04 I eventually went to using so heavy
09:07 that I started overdosed on it one time
09:11 when I was mixing it with other stuff.
09:13 Because, I got heavy and using, doing ecstasy and pill,
09:18 I would have to take downers
09:19 like Valium and Xanax, and Klonopin
09:21 just to calm down and go to sleep,
09:23 slow my heart rate down.
09:25 And it was pretty bad.
09:27 I was even shooting it up and I was so ashamed of it,
09:31 I would do it little high
09:32 where I can put a shirt and cover them.
09:34 You know, my family's ever, you know,
09:36 my family don't do stuff like that.
09:38 They're all pretty respectable people.
09:41 So it will drive you to the point
09:43 where you do something
09:45 that you're not even comfortable doing
09:47 but you do it anyway.
09:49 But, yeah, I overdosed three times.
09:52 Talk a little bit about those experiences with overdosing.
09:56 It was horrible.
09:57 One time I fought
09:58 the whole Hammond Louisiana Police Department,
10:00 didn't even, don't even really remember it.
10:03 And I woke up the next morning in the hospital,
10:05 looking up at the lights and didn't know where I was at,
10:08 and they were running a catheter rope in me.
10:10 And that was a scary bad feeling
10:13 because there was a sheet up,
10:15 I didn't know what was going on, I just,
10:17 just scared the life out of me, what life I had left in me.
10:21 They told me I was very fortunate to make it,
10:25 so that I would probably suffer long term effects,
10:28 damage from it.
10:29 Yeah, definitely.
10:31 You know it's interesting often that drugs are glorified,
10:35 you know, so often people talk so highly of them.
10:37 But that downside, that negative side,
10:40 a lot of people don't say that.
10:42 Yeah, they say, well, you know, this is good,
10:44 it gave me that super high,
10:45 it gave me this, it gave me that.
10:46 But in the flip side, just like with alcohol,
10:48 you know, yeah, you drink, you have fun, you got it,
10:50 and it almost seems like it makes everything more fun.
10:54 But then what if you drink too much,
10:55 you get a hangover, you know.
10:56 And its sometimes it's kind of like we laugh
10:58 and we joke about a hangover and different things like that.
11:00 But at the same time
11:02 when you have fun with some of these drugs,
11:04 the negative side is like you stated,
11:06 loss of money, loss of family.
11:08 And it's interesting that you--
11:10 in a lot of hip-hop records and things
11:12 where the drugs and things like that are glorified.
11:15 You know here, the real about you know, yeah,
11:17 I've spent all my money on my drugs
11:19 now I'm broke, you know, now I don't have anything.
11:21 I smoke so much that
11:23 now I don't even have a family, you know.
11:25 And that's the reality where it seems like it's fun
11:28 but the reality is you're losing family,
11:31 you're losing friends, real friends at that.
11:34 And so it's a lot of negative side
11:36 that needs to be talked on as well.
11:39 Now after that you eventually went to prison
11:42 for a couple of years.
11:43 Talk about the prison life, what it was like,
11:47 as well as what your charge was that sent you to prison.
11:50 Prison life is no joke.
11:54 You know I've seen a lot of people getting killed,
11:58 raped over stupid stuffs.
12:00 I was in there have five weeks and seen two guys get into it,
12:03 one hold the other guy for two egg sandwiches
12:06 out of the chow hall.
12:07 And they were both about to get out
12:09 but I guess they had been institutionalized
12:12 and been in there so long and had to learn lifestyle
12:15 of killed be kill, you know, protect yourself,
12:18 you know, get your own.
12:20 And the one guy just told him,
12:22 I ain't going to fight you, man, I am okay.
12:24 And the other guy closed him in the room
12:27 and that's exactly what he got.
12:29 And they had knives in there,
12:30 and they were like Rambo knives.
12:32 You know, they call them bone crusher.
12:34 When it hit you, it's going through bone
12:36 and always come out of back side
12:38 and it was brutal and so horrible site
12:41 to watch somebody be stabbed
12:42 and watch them terribly bleed to death.
12:45 Reaching for like, he was reaching for air, I guess,
12:50 trying to reaching for a life, trying to hold on.
12:53 Yeah. Wow. Wow.
12:55 After seeing those things, how did that make you feel,
12:57 seeing the rapes in prison, seeing the murders in prison?
13:01 How did that make you feel?
13:02 And matter of fact, also with that,
13:04 how long were you in prison
13:06 as well as what was the charge that sends you to prison?
13:09 I was only, I was in prison for two years
13:11 which was long time for me
13:13 but for a lot of guys it's been 20, 30 years,
13:15 that's nothing but it was log enough
13:18 to see the flip side of it,
13:20 you know, see a lot of bad stuff.
13:28 How long, how long,
13:29 what did you end up going to prison for?
13:32 I went for meth. For meth? Okay.
13:34 So that even adds more to the negative side of it
13:36 where you know, when we talked about the joys of it,
13:40 but then this is the thing that led you to prison.
13:42 It was the drugs that led you to prison,
13:44 which is another thing that is horrible negative
13:47 because, sometimes also prison life is glorified.
13:50 We see it on TV, we see it in movies, we see it--
13:52 I remember, certain hip-hop songs
13:54 that specifically glorified it, you know,
13:56 pretty much like you go in, you see all your friends,
13:58 you having fun then you get out,
13:59 you come out a real man
14:01 because this didn't happen or that didn't happen.
14:02 But the reality is of prison life
14:04 is just like what you just said it.
14:06 Some people get killed in there,
14:07 some people get raped in there, some people don't make it out.
14:10 I remember myself when I was in there,
14:12 like, you stated that two years was enough for you.
14:14 And which same for me, it was enough for me.
14:17 And I would have people that have been there
14:18 10, 20, 30 years say,
14:20 two years, that ain't nothing, you know like--
14:23 Number one, I'm not built for cage.
14:26 I'm not an animal
14:27 where I feel like I should be in a cage.
14:30 And for me to be there for 10, 30, 40 years,
14:33 it doesn't take me long to realize
14:35 that I don't want to be here, you know.
14:36 So I don't need to go through,
14:38 I don't need to be there 40 years to realize that.
14:40 And a lot of people will say, well, what is two years?
14:42 You know, two years is nothing.
14:43 So you went,
14:45 how many different prisons where you transfer to
14:46 and what were some of the different prisons
14:48 that you were at?
14:49 I went to five different, I went from Kilby to Bill,
14:53 they called it Bloody Bill which was the worst part,
14:55 the deadliest one I was at.
14:57 Okay, now, you say a Bloody Bill,
14:58 I got to stop it right there.
15:00 Why did they call it Bloody Bill?
15:02 Well, I think this pretty self-explanatory.
15:05 Blood shed every day there.
15:07 Well, so going through all of that,
15:09 how did you manage to make it out of there alive?
15:12 By the grace of God. Amen, amen.
15:15 When I first got there, there were many knives,
15:17 and I just stuck my head undercover and prayed.
15:20 And that's how I finally fell a sleep
15:22 just talking to God, "Please, God help me get--
15:25 if I make it out this cell I'll never do this again."
15:28 Think we've all said that prayer once in our life.
15:31 Most of us has said it a lot of time.
15:33 Now you eventually came to a point
15:36 where you realized you know,
15:38 it's time to make a change in your life.
15:39 What was it that brought you to that point
15:41 after years of drinking, after years of drug,
15:44 using meth, using ecstasy, all these various things,
15:47 since you were young,
15:49 since you were even before teenager?
15:50 What was it that brought you to that breaking point,
15:53 that rock bottom or whatever it was
15:55 that made you decide
15:56 I need to start making a change,
15:58 start taking steps towards Jesus?
16:00 Its the prison, been taken away from my family, my kids,
16:06 because before I went to prison my kids,
16:08 me and my baby's mother, we split up.
16:11 She lost a case to DHR for drugs
16:14 and I had a chance to get on
16:16 but I was so strong out on drugs
16:17 I couldn't straighten up.
16:20 When I went to prison and got, and cleaned up just reality set
16:24 and I realized that, I realize what a wreck I was,
16:27 and that's when I gave myself to God.
16:30 I just decided it if I keep doing the same thing
16:33 I'm going to keep getting same results.
16:35 Yeah, definitely, definitely.
16:37 So I decided it was time for a change,
16:38 a real life change.
16:41 Now you eventually learned
16:43 about the Seventh-day Adventist Church,
16:44 well, you learned about the Sabbath first.
16:47 And coming from a Pentecostal background,
16:49 how did you learn about the Sabbath?
16:51 What began that search for the truth
16:54 in the Word of God for you?
16:56 Different denominations coming into the prisons
16:59 because I was dedicated to the church
17:00 every time doors open, I was in a--
17:03 So you were sincere about want to make a change?
17:04 Yeah. Definitely.
17:06 I read my Bible
17:08 for the first year I was in prison.
17:11 The whole time I was awake,
17:13 I was reading my Bible on my bed.
17:16 You know, we didn't have to, it was a no-working camp.
17:20 It was mostly, it was a camp for people who were--
17:23 who came from Max camps and didn't want to do anything
17:27 or just serve, had life sentences,
17:29 not getting out.
17:30 Okay, yeah they don't want to work,
17:32 don't want to do--
17:33 and you really can't make person a life,
17:34 you really can't make him even do anything.
17:36 They know they're going to be here all the time,
17:37 there's no hope of getting out.
17:39 Can't do nothing with them. Yeah, definitely.
17:40 And so it was a holding tank for the worst of the worst,
17:43 level four camps.
17:45 And that's why they got, got it's name Bloody Bill.
17:48 Okay. Now for those that don't--
17:49 I understand the different levels of prison.
17:51 When you stated a level four, I understand what a level four,
17:54 because you have level four, level five, level one,
17:55 level two, level three, you have max, super max.
17:58 But talk about the difference
18:00 between the different levels of prisons
18:01 for the viewers out there that have never been to prison,
18:04 don't understand what that means,
18:06 talk about that a little bit.
18:07 Level four is confinement, you can get outside the fence.
18:14 Whereas one, two, and three you know, you can get out
18:18 and work in the community or work a job.
18:20 But level four, if you work you, they'll take you out,
18:24 you'll be on shackles and you'll be under a shotgun.
18:28 Well, I don't know,
18:29 I don't think they do the shackles anymore,
18:31 but you're going to be under shotgun.
18:33 You're not going to get far out of their site,
18:35 you're not going to be in public.
18:36 Yeah, okay.
18:38 But it's a, you know, Max Campus.
18:42 I've never been to Max camp but this, they,
18:45 I think they're locked down 24/7.
18:47 Okay. Okay.
18:49 Now you were at a level four.
18:53 What was it like at a level four
18:55 being that you came with a drug charge,
18:57 where I was at a level two facility.
18:59 I was there were people 15, 20 years,
19:01 they were people that have hopes to get out.
19:03 Level four, you were there were people that have life,
19:06 you're there with you know, a lot of violent offenders,
19:08 different things like that.
19:09 Had you ever been to a level one,
19:11 level two, level three
19:12 or were they all pretty much level fours?
19:14 First one I went to was level four.
19:17 Now why did they end up, basically with a drug charge,
19:19 why did they send you straight to a level four
19:21 versus a level two?
19:23 Because I had a pending charge.
19:26 When I went to the County jail right off the bed,
19:28 I had a pending charge and I wanted to--
19:31 I heard, like you said, people say prison,
19:33 they make prison ought to be,
19:35 is supposed to be better than the County,
19:37 you know, you can move, you can smoke.
19:39 So I booked in the County
19:41 and threaten to tear the new jail
19:43 apart in prison so they send me home.
19:46 And I got what I asked for. Yeah.
19:48 I wind up going to the worst level four prison in the State
19:52 and with a pending charge,
19:54 so I couldn't even go outside the fence to work.
19:56 Yeah, yeah. Wow.
19:57 Not even under a shotgun.
19:59 I was stuck. Wow.
20:00 So you eventually, you learned about the Sabbath.
20:02 How did you--
20:04 how did you learn about the Sabbath
20:05 because you stated that you were going to--
20:07 every time a little church doors would open,
20:09 you would go to the worships and stuff.
20:11 But how did you specifically learn about the Sabbath?
20:14 Well, that's a good story, I tell you.
20:17 I started, I noticed that different denominations
20:19 had different, little bit different beliefs,
20:21 they could take the same scripture
20:23 and makes something a different meaning out of it
20:26 than what the last guy did.
20:27 They both saying the same--
20:28 and they both sounded, you know, truthful.
20:31 But they both had the truth,
20:32 so I started praying for God to show me the truth right then
20:36 because I say, God, you know, I'm serious about You,
20:40 serving You, and I want to know
20:42 the Bible says the truth will make you free
20:44 and that you have to have a love
20:46 for the truth and for Jesus Christ.
20:48 And so I wanted to know, so I guess,
20:51 because of my love for Jesus Christ,
20:53 it goes hand in hand.
20:54 And I had a lot to know what was real and truth,
20:57 who had truth.
20:58 And so after I started praying like it,
21:02 they moved me into a one year ministry program
21:04 in Bill where they put me
21:06 beside a guy named Chauncey Gibson,
21:09 who had been Adventist his whole life, you know.
21:13 He had been to college, two years learning Greek
21:17 and all that in college.
21:20 And he taught me a lot.
21:21 At first we bumped our heads because I never heard of
21:24 Seventh-day Adventists or Sabbath day,
21:27 didn't think that was necessary.
21:29 My grandma would've been there and I thought she was like
21:33 one of my positive role models growing up
21:35 and I knew she was sincere
21:37 as any Christian I've ever seen.
21:39 She had to have the truth, so you know, I thought--
21:43 So you all kind of bump heads over whether or not
21:46 the Seventh-day Sabbath was the truth
21:47 or other truth that he was showing you,
21:50 whether those were truth or whether they were not?
21:52 Oh, yeah, we bumped to that and I thought I was going--
21:56 you know, when he--
21:57 we had debates about certain things,
21:59 I would kind of give of snickering you know,
22:03 lay off like, yeah,
22:04 you just think you got the truth, man.
22:06 Yeah, okay.
22:08 He went on to--
22:09 he finally started convinced me,
22:11 I couldn't really--
22:12 he had so much surety in the word
22:15 and you know, was so knowledgeable
22:17 and fluent with the word.
22:20 It wasn't a debate for real,
22:22 I eventually started just following his lead.
22:24 And I learned a lot from this guy
22:26 because I couldn't argue with word.
22:29 And I realized after you know,
22:32 probably a week studying with him,
22:34 I started realizing that this was my prayer answered.
22:37 I asked for God to show me the truth, and he put--
22:39 Brought it to you.
22:41 Put an angel, I think, right in my path.
22:43 Amen, amen.
22:45 So eventually, you got sent to another prison
22:48 and you started to UPMI,
22:51 United Prison Ministries International
22:52 was coming to the prison.
22:54 Talk about that experience. Yeah.
22:55 Well, at Bill, we didn't have any Saturday,
22:58 any Sabbath services,
23:00 we had a lot of services through the week
23:01 and Sunday was big time service call, a church call,
23:05 Church of Highlands from Birmingham, Alabama
23:07 would come out.
23:09 And they were good, they had some really good services
23:11 but, you know, very entertaining,
23:13 beautiful music, we would--
23:16 They came in and installed a big screen,
23:18 a projector system in our chapel and we used to--
23:21 and it would feel that chapel--
23:23 because they had some beautiful contemporary music.
23:26 And we would,
23:28 the whole congregation be singing to them.
23:30 We just have a good time.
23:31 But I started praying for some Sabbath services
23:35 because, you know, I was,
23:37 I wanted to honor the Sabbath day and keep it holy.
23:40 That's the day I started desiring to worship on.
23:45 And I would pray, I prayed hard for God to bring it in there,
23:48 and but He answered my prayer but not the way I wanted to.
23:52 Sometimes you get things you get them
23:55 but not how you plan on that.
23:56 Yeah, definitely, definitely.
23:57 They wind up shipping me to another prison, Draper,
24:00 which was another rough thugy prison.
24:03 And but right off the bed I looked at the church services
24:07 and saying, and on Saturday
24:09 they had a group called UPMI coming in.
24:11 So you got the exact prayer you were praying for?
24:14 Yeah. Amen.
24:15 These guys were Seventh-day Adventist,
24:17 I knew when I see them come in, I'll sit in there waiting.
24:20 And I think you actually interviewed Steve Redford,
24:25 And Tony Hall. Tony Hall.
24:27 Yes, sir. Yeah.
24:28 And the first one I spoke to was Steve.
24:30 When I seen him coming and I could just tell,
24:32 they just had this different glow about them, smiling.
24:35 And, you know, I said,
24:36 "You must be Seventh-day Adventist?"
24:38 And he smiled real big, he said, "Yes, we are."
24:41 He said, But we don't like to use that Seventh word
24:43 because it pushes a lot of people,
24:45 you know, a lot of people don't think,
24:47 don't like to honor the seventh day,
24:49 that pushes them out the door.
24:51 So we call our self UPMI,
24:53 United Prison Ministries International.
24:55 Definitely. Okay.
24:57 That inspired me a lot,
24:58 they go to over 5,000 prisons across the world.
25:02 They even go to Russia and you know, play in countries
25:04 where we're not welcome at as Americans.
25:07 They have to be escorted to the,
25:09 and it takes someone who has a love for saving souls
25:12 to go somewhere like that.
25:14 Yeah, definitely, definitely.
25:16 But these guys inspired me,
25:17 and I was blessed to have seen Tony Hall
25:20 at the Oak Wood Church while back at the Cong--
25:23 what do you-- At camp meeting.
25:24 At the camp meeting, yeah. Defiantly.
25:26 And that was a true blessing, prayer answered.
25:30 Now when you got out of prison,
25:32 where you were a little bit afraid
25:33 that you had experienced jailhouse religion
25:36 or were you pretty much sold on this,
25:38 this is what I'm doing no faking it,
25:40 this is what I'm going to do?
25:42 I knew I had the truth, I wasn't--
25:45 I don't have any doubts about it
25:46 but a lot of people did because it happened so much.
25:51 There were sedative right of people
25:52 who come out of prison with religion
25:55 and just go right back to what they were doing,
25:57 it's a very high rate.
26:00 Most people don't, most people don't sustain,
26:02 they don't keep their faith.
26:04 Yeah, definitely.
26:05 And I believe that goes with the truth.
26:07 The truth will make you free,
26:09 the truth is what sanctifies you,
26:11 the Word of God.
26:13 Yeah, definitely.
26:14 Jesus emphasize how important sound doctrine is.
26:17 So if you believe in something that has one, you know,
26:21 is not true, it has a little bit of error in it,
26:23 it's like having--
26:25 How did he say, "One batch of leave
26:30 will ruin the whole--"
26:31 Yeah, ruin the whole lawn, yeah.
26:34 And I believe, I believe that's what he was talking about.
26:38 And I knew I had the true and God had made me free
26:42 so a lot of people, even like, you know,
26:45 I'm being supervised on parole
26:47 and probation, CREO now, with specialist
26:49 and they keep monitor on me to make sure.
26:52 And my specialist, she's a Christian.
26:54 And I've been sharing my testimony with her.
26:57 You know, she asked the same thing,
26:59 she said, "I have to keep up with you
27:01 for at least six months
27:03 because the sedative right is six months."
27:05 Most people will go back to prison,
27:07 85 percent go back to the prison
27:09 for the same thing that they get out
27:11 for within six months.
27:13 She said, "I have to make sure
27:14 you don't have jailhouse religion
27:15 and that you're going to do right.
27:17 I have to keep eye on you for at least six months."
27:20 I supposed to be on it for a year,
27:22 but they don't let me go
27:23 as long as I make it past the six months
27:25 because they are so--
27:30 what's the word I'm looking for, inspired by testimony--
27:34 Yeah, by your story.
27:35 That they believe, they believe me
27:38 but they still have to do their job
27:39 and you know, keep monitoring on me,
27:41 and make sure that I don't go back to prison for my six--
27:45 or have jailhouse religion.
27:46 Yeah, definitely, definitely.
27:48 Well, Rocky, we'd like to thank you,
27:49 for being on the program,
27:51 very great story, a very great testimony.
27:53 We just want to thank you so much for being on.
27:56 Viewers, tune in next time
27:57 for another exciting program of The New Journey.