My name is Peter Mwangi, I was raised by my single mother, the only son among five sisters. My father died when I was still a child, as a poor family we had many challenges. My two older sisters decided to run away from home, thinking life would be better. They dropped out of school and by 16 and 17 both were pregnant. My mother wouldn’t accept them back in the home. Often I too wanted to leave, but I would look at my younger siblings and stay for their sake. I did small jobs for people in order to support my mother, and also tried to save some money to buy shoes for school, but I never managed, problems kept coming our way.
Despite all the challenges I managed to finish both primary and secondary, even though I had to go through many schools. My mother would move me to a new school each time fees were due, she couldn’t afford to pay them. I remember the time of my final exam, everyone laughing at me sarcastically at why I wasn’t going to the exam but instead leaving. I had to leave because we couldn’t pay. I took comfort that I had achieved more than anyone in my family and hoped my younger sisters would be encouraged to do the same.
Life became even more difficult for me after high school. My mother couldn’t support my education any further as she had promised to take me to college, and no one was there to support us, so I just played football.
Slowly I started losing interest in everything, losing hope, lacking purpose, I became suicidal and started doing drugs and alcohol, even mugging people for a living. I became careless and reckless, I couldn’t even see how much I was changing for the worse.
One day a man called Fred came with the football coach and some other men to speak to us about Jesus Christ and the need to change our sinful lives of drugs and crime. At first I didn’t care about what he was saying, but he also invited those willing, to his school for further sessions.
The day I went he talked about Christ and his love, and how he was ready to walk with those willing to quit their bad behaviours. Since that day I never stopped going to the sessions. My friends all quit till eventually only two of us remained. We were then accepted into a newly opened rehabilitation centre for a six-month program. I got saved whilst in rehab and found my first job as a cleaner! It was for 5000 shillings a month ($70 AUD). I used the money to help my family taking little for myself, while I began to volunteer to reach out to other addicts.
I was offered further education, a diploma in addiction counselling and successfully graduated as a counsellor. As I continued outreaching to other addicts Fred eventually introduced me to an Australian Pastor. One who had been an addict and soldier before serving Jesus Christ. We did outreaches together, and I learnt the importance of God’s Word in our lives. Amazingly God opened the door for me to study to be an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). I am now completing this course with all funding provided through the goodness of God. God has become the father I never had.
Eventually I am to be the manager of Harvest of Hope Africa’s rehabilitation centre which is due for completion in late 2019. This is a great honour for me and a blessing. I never thought God could do such things with me, especially with the many challenges I faced. Yet with Christ all things are possible.
For nothing will be impossible with God