It was 05:30 on the morning of 17th June 1993. I woke up to a quiet whisper in my cell. The prison noises were as normal; night staff getting ready to clock off, day staff were arriving, dogs were barking, various gates were opening and closing, some idiot was whistling a merry tune in the distance … you see the picture.

I stared at the ceiling of my cell and tried to work our how or why there was a quiet whisper. I think it was in my cell. It was certainly audible but it felt really personal … intimate almost. A really gentle whisper. Maybe it was in my head but it felt more like it was all round me, even possibly inside me … this is what I could hear/feel “Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus” … on and on and on.
Christianity was Nerd Capital to me. Some hot chicks in there but they were all with nerdish smiling do-gooders . . . “Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus”
“Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus”

My cell wall was a collage of porn; “Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus”

I’d pretty much destroyed every relationship near to me “Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus” , I’d been in and out in and out in and out of prison and shop doorways, homeless shelters . . . “Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus”

“Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus” …. all flippin day guys . . . all flippin day.
That night I went to the prison chapel …. and guess who they were talking about? Yuuup “Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus – Jesus” for cryin-out-loud!

17th June 1993 at 19:35ish (give or take 5 minutes) … In HMP The Verbne Prison Chapel; The Name and the Truth of The Grace and The Mercy of Jesus literally penetrated the very heart of me … I crumbled.

I was baptized that night in a prison waste bin … where societies trash throw their trash … a bit like a rat I climbed into that bin – it was used for waters of Baptism and that’s where I got real before this Divine Stalker.

On my knees, for the first time in my life I prayed with sincerity: “Lord I don’t know who I am and I hate what I have become. I hate what I do but I simply cannot stop. This is my empty heart Lord and these are my sin-stained hands, … if you are who you say you are – well then you are the only One who can really tell me who I am … if you will receive my heart Lord, as filthy as it is, I will serve you lock-stock-and-barrel for the rest of my life up until and include the day I die, but I need mercy first”.

That and more all took place in my heart whilst I was under the water . . . I came up out of the water that night, new.

The nerds suddenly looked like soldiers. The chicks still looked hot but I now felt defensive and protective around them because of men like the me who climbed into the bin . . .

Everything changed. I went back to my cell and removed all the porn.
The journey began

-Colin Garnett

CEO and Co-founder of Bethesda Addiction Treatment Center