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CBN.com Thaddeus Bruce was 21-years-old when he first started using crack cocaine. He spent hundreds of dollars on his addiction every day. It got so bad that he pawned his cars, jewelry, and stole from family and friends.
"I was walking the streets with the same clothes on I’ve had all of these days. It was the same shoes I had on. All I was doing was looking for my next fix of crack cocaine," Thaddeus tells The 700 Club.
Thaddeus’s addiction cost him his marriage, his children, his home, and his job. He started living in crack houses. In fact, we [The 700 Club] did this interview across the street from one of the more popular crack houses in the area.
"I didn’t use at this particular house, but I used at many houses just like that. Most of them had no running water and no lights. They use candles, and there's just filth all over the place," he says.
"All you want to do is find a place that you can sit and can get high without being bothered. You're not worried about the police or the po-po coming in knocking and busting the doors down [which sometimes even if they did, you would try to get your last hit.]"
No matter how many different treatment centers he went to, nothing seemed to work. Then his desperate mother introduced him to a pastor and a former cocaine addict in Jacksonville, FL.
"You could see the anointing all over her life and how God set her free. And I wanted that. I really did," says Thaddeus of the pastor he met.
Thaddeus started regularly attending church and reading his Bible. But the pull of crack cocaine was too strong, and he went back to using. When he came up missing, Pastor Kimberly Daniels knew just where to find him.
"I would go to the crack house and get a fog horn and say, 'Thaddeus, we know you’re in there.' He’d be trying to sneak out the back door. After a while, the word got around in my program. They’d be like, 'Here comes that crazy lady. We can’t even get high in peace, you know. She’s going to make the police get us or whatever.' ”
"She had such a connection with God and an anointing on her life that she wasn’t taking no for an answer. You were coming out or she would go to praying and everybody in the house would be coming out. So yeah, you’d come out of the house."
One day, Thaddeus was high on crack at his aunt’s house when Pastor Kim went to pick him up for church. He refused to go. It seemed nothing would convince him until God used Pastor Kim’s daughter, Faith, to get Thaddeus back on the road to recovery.
Little Faith said, “Come on, Mr. Thaddeus.” She said, “I’m going to pray for you because you need to go with us, and we need you to go with us.”
"As she began to pray, and I mean, at four-years-old, can you imagine the anointing on her life? I mean, it was almost as if she laid her hands on me and began to pray. I just broke out into tears. And I mean, just like a sob. I mean not just a little weep, but I mean a sob. And the next thing I know I was sitting in the car, and she was sitting in the seat right beside me holding my hand -- this little girl, Faith."
"Even at that age, the anointing was on her life so much. And even today, you know I thank God because that may have been my wake-up call."
Through tough love and the prayers of Pastor Kim and her husband, God totally set Thaddeus free from years of crack addiction.
"There was a peace that came over me after the deliverance because truly, I know that there was a deliverance that had taken place on my life."
That was 14 years ago.Today, Thaddeus has a brand new life. In fact, we were there for his wedding day!
Pastor Kim: "I now pronounce you man and wife. You may now kiss the bride."
"That’s what I’m talking about! So many of my friends and people that I used with are dead or locked up in jail. And by His grace and mercy, I’m here," he says.
Thaddeus is a faithful member of Pastor Kim’s church. When he ministers in music – it’s a song of repentance, redemption, and restoration.
"It’s a blessing to see how prosperous he is," says Pastor Kim. "Thaddeus is a strong foundation and after all these years, I’m so thankful to God that he’s still strong in the Lord. He is sharp. He is dedicated, and he is delivered."
"Here I am today, and I’m truly free. And for all of those who are still bound or who think they’re still bound, there is a way and that’s Jesus Christ. And if He can set me free, if He can deliver me and change my walk and talk, and give me a new song, He can do the same for them because He’s no respecter of person," Thaddeus believes.
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