When the World is Not Enough
By Shannon Woodland
The 700 Club
CBN.com -When Joshua Mitchell raps, he sings about life, his life, so that others will learn.
Joshua said, “ I’m writing from my heart, I’m writing from the past mistakes that I’ve made, I’m writing about things people are struggling with, I’m giving them hope at the end, and it’s awesome!”
Joshua grew up in the suburbs, but he was intrigued by the lifestyle of gansta rappers. And he wanted to be just like them.
“They had the ladies, they had to money, they had the fame, they were touring and everything you watched them do was in excellence.”
In that world, image is everything.
“I wanted to prove myself to people so I’m going to the end of this,” explained Joshua. “ So I started carrying guns, I’m going to start selling drugs, so I can really rap about this stuff. I can really be who I say I am.”
Even though he went to church with his family, he never cared about what God thought. It was his friends he wanted to impress.
“The wrong people were speaking into my life and it affected me, it affected me. I started to take on what they said I’m going to be. You know you do this real good, you know you fight real good, you can rap like that real good, and I’m like ya, and that’s starting to steer my life versus God steering my life.”
To make matters worse, his parents separated and his dad moved out. Since his family was falling apart, Joshua leaned more heavily on his friends.
Joshua said, “That’s when I started going down the road of robbing and started selling drugs and really started hanging in some bad places. I got to the point where I really don’t care no more.”
By now many might have written Joshua off as a statistic. His mother refused to give up on him. For years she prayed daily he’d turn to God. Then finally, Joshua’s world collapsed.
“I’m laying on the ground now, cops got guns in my face, I’m caught red handed.”
Joshua had agreed to be in on a robbery with someone the police had targeted for a sting operation. An undercover cop arrested the two.
“I’m ready to go to jail. So all of it sets in is this really worth it?”
Joshua was charged with three felonies.
“All that stuff you rap about, gangsta music, where is it now? All of that you live by the code you die by the code,” stressed Joshua. “And at that moment I said I’m done. I’m done.”
Joshua was released on bond. But his case got caught up in the court system for two years. It gave him time to think about his life.
“At that time I didn’t have nobody else but my family. My friends weren’t around. The only thing that really mattered was seeing my mom praying saying, Joshua, God is waking you up, cause God has a plan for you.”
One day in court, Joshua learned about this plan.
“I remember that last day for me. The judge looked at me and said, I don’t know why I’m doing this. I don’t even understand why I’m doing this. I shouldn’t be doing this, but I’m going to let you off. And I’m going to give you three years probation.”
Astounded by what God had done, Joshua gave his life to Jesus Christ.
“I said, God, I see you now. The light came on, the light came on, you’ve been with me throughout this whole process, even when I was out there doing things you kept my life and you let me get to this place to see that you’re the only thing I need.”
He also learned that through Christ he had strength to resist his former lifestyle.
“My friends would still call me, wanting to hang out wanting to drink, and I’d choose life,” said Joshua. “ Girls were still calling me, wanting to get up and do some things, but I choose life. And the more you choose life, life starts living in you more and more.”
Joshua has since married. He and his wife Rose bring the message of God’s love through Joshua’s new music.
Joshua said, “Now I’m doing music that I love. And seeing God through the hardest times of my life coming through, and even now, and even in the tough times I face now, seeing God work in my favor, it continues to show me God is for me. And now I can say I really know God. It’s not like I use to say, oh yeah, I know God, He’s pretty cool, He’ll work in your favor. I can say I know God will work in your favor because He did for me.”
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