Sharing my story

It’s been out about 3 weeks and though sales are slow I am pleased with them. God calls us to tell our story, not necessarily to sell our story. I have proclaimed God’s Grace and Mercy to a small audience, nevertheless, an audience.

My story is not all that different from some of yours. Okay, maybe that 5 of the most significant events of my life happened on Monday’s is odd but the story itself is life’s water drops, from crystal clear to muddy and everything in between. I have no credentials or fame that will draw the masses. Still I wrote it, hoping it would help others on their journey. I wrote it because I felt alone on my own journey. I wrote it because I felt I had to.

If you’re looking for hope, I believe you’ll find it in Then Monday Came: The Party’s Over but The Celebration Has Just Begun. As for the subtitle: Paul’s Home celebrating with his Redeemer.


Troy Barros

Today I bring you the testimony of Troy Barros in his own words (with slight editing for grammar and punctuation) from his speech upon graduating from the Inside Out Men’s Home.

“Like most of us here I’ve had troubles since childhood. The way I responded to as well as accepted those trials was by being very self-destructive and explosive. I was a threat to all who were around me in some way, shape, or form. Each time I went through something, I always came out worse than I was before the incident took place! Every time I was hurt by someone or suffered a loss I became more and more twisted, and eventually my thought process became absolutely backwards. I was a very angry person that needed God, but found drugs as well as a very disruptive lifestyle. Because of that lifestyle, I spent a lot of time behind bars.

Every time while incarcerated, I would read God’s Word and sometimes even lead Bible studies. I’d get out, be blessed beyond words, take my blessing, forget about God and run. Always, like clockwork I’d slip back into my old ways and always I’d find myself in a cell praying to God for help as well as forgiveness. Each time the matter got worse. Eventually I was not just brought to my knees, I was completely flattened, knocked out and down for the count! My pride anger and sinful lifestyle had finally caught up to me. I was in court and my top sentence was 15 years 6 months. I remember praying to God–please let me do this Men’s Home! I promise I’ll change. I need serious help! Eventually that prayer request was answered! I was given a one year county jail sentence with a severe tail (suspended life sentence) that allows me no more room for mistakes.

So at this point all I had to do was convince Pastor Rich as well as get a transfer from probation. These were going to be my next two trials. But before I get to that point , in anticipation as well as hopes of being accepted into the Men’s Home I realized I was so screwed up I could use all the preparation I could get. I voluntarily entered the RCP program, an in custody drug treatment that had a military style format: boots, marching, standing at attention, the whole bit. I had two main instructors, Tyronne McGee and George Gates. Both were very strict but taught recovery with great passion. It was an 8 week program but I had the privilege of being there 4 & 1/2 months. I learned a lot of things. The two most important: 1. Drop the pride and be able to receive instruction. 2. Wake up real early and be ready for the day.  I knew those were two requirements of the Men’s Home. In the process of working on recovery I really learned a lot about myself and how really screwed up I was. George Gates assigned a homework assignment to write my own obituary. I did and I wasn’t happy with what I saw at that point. I diligently wrote Pastor Rich. I completed the RCP program, got released from jail and, by the Grace of God Pastor said he’d give me a chance. All the many walls that were before me like probation, transfers as well as serious classes I had to take per court order were all taken care of through this ministry. My transfer was granted and my journey began.

When I arrived at the Men’s Home I was made aware of how many issues I really did have. The list was very long but I was completely broken and ready for change. Not only was I ready but had no choice other than to go forward. The Men’s Home provided everything I needed. It wasn’t easy but I did it. For the first time in my life I didn’t run or take the easy way out. Instead I took something from so many of my peers, co-workers and pastors, a different quality from each of them. I really listened and asked a lot of questions. I believe each individual was placed in my life for a different reason and I hoped I received it properly. Every one helped me fine tune different skills and behavioral patterns and gifts and because of that I am a new man and I’ve learned how to live a new life in which I am entirely thankful.

The devil has reminded me for so many years of the lives I’ve taken, helped destroy and all the many mistakes I’ve made. But I find great joy in that now I no longer have to let these mistakes keep me captive and I can press into Phillipians 3:13-14. “No dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.” (New Living Translation)

Pertaining to all the things I did lose, what’s important has been restored to me: my salvation, my family, my freedom, life, and a wonderful church family that helps me keep my focus on God and His Will for my life.

Real important: my family now speaks to me again after a decade of anger towards me for my horrible behavior. They’re starting things over with me. My mother who continuously hurt over and over again has forgiven me, still loves me a lot, and just as important, I don’t need to apologize to her gravestone. My God Can Restore Anything! I want to thank everyone in the ministry. You all played a part, especially Don and Pastor Rich, my entire family whom I was lucky enough, excuse me blessed enough, to have support me and to John and Christian who never stopped praying for me. And I’m thankful to God for without Him, none of this or any of us would have been possible.”

Thank you Troy for sharing. It’s been a pleasure getting to know you. May God continue to bless you on your journey.

Then Monday Came is ready to order

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