Chris Jones: Nobody's Gone Too Far for God
By Kara Lavengood
The 700 Club
“I really latched onto the skateboarding and punk music,” Chris Jones said. “I just remember feeling like, ‘This is who I am; you know, I’m angry. I’m angry and I can relate to this.”
Thirteen-year-old Chris Jones was angry about his parent’s divorce. He found refuge in the punk rock scene of southern California.
“I just lost control. I was self medicating,” he said. “I didn’t want to be me or I didn’t want to experience pain or frustration. I remember skateboarding to school high on LSD in 7th grade. I went to my first rehab when I was 14-years-old. I went to jail for stealing a car when I was 14.”
By the time he was in late teens, Chris had a full-blown drug addiction.
“I was a human garbage can as far as drugs,” he said. “I would do LSD, cocaine, weed, uppers, downers, all arounders.”
His passion for punk rock music was over-shadowed by his addictions.
“It turned into less and less punk rock shows, less and less even caring about music; more and more drugs,” Chris said.
Chris wound up in rehab again. This time, he received more than drug counseling.
“I remember - just a guy; he just said, ‘You need to give your life to the Jesus Christ.’ And I’m like, ‘What do I need to do to? Because I hate myself. I hate the way I live. What do I need to do?’ And he led me to the Lord right there in the rehab and I broke. I mean that. I just know it was real because I was broken - I was weeping,” Chris said.
Chris says he had a real encounter with God, but his addictions still had a hold on him.
“I got out of that rehab and I tried really hard to stay sober,” he said. “And I think I made it four months and I went back and just did the same old thing.”
At 25, Chris was arrested for manufacturing meth and sent to prison.
“I got into the whole, you know, prison gang life with the hate,” he said.
Chris spent three years in prison. Soon after his release, he was back to his old ways.
“I was in jail again. And I believe God gave me that moment of clarity that was like, ‘What? Is this my life? The sum of my existence - this is it?’ It was like, ‘There’s got to be more. There’s got to be something that I am.’ And I said, ‘God, if you’re real, please help me,’” Chris said.
Chris received the help he prayed for. His parole officer decided not to report the violation.
“I got out. I got into a 12-step program, which I’m thankful for, because it helped me establish a relationship with God,” he said.
Over the next four years, Chris made some big changes. He cleaned up and got sober, started a wood flooring business and got married. He and his new wife Tracy also had two children. His relationship with god grew, but Chris still wasn’t ready to give his life fully to the Lord.
“I was in a secular rock ’n’ roll band that took up a lot of my time,” Chris said.
When his wife Tracy started going to church, Chris wasn’t convinced it was a priority. That put a major strain on their relationship.
“I was either going to divorce my wife because she was a Christian now, and go against God or step up to the plate and join. Well we went to see The Passion, and it brought to life what Christ did for me,” Chris said. “Jesus Christ like loves me. He loves me. ‘We’re going to church babe.’ That’s what I said to my wife.”
Chris and his family went to church together and haven’t looked back.
“I remember the very first time that Chris ever came to church and how he literally opened up and gave his life completely to the Lord,” their pastor said. “It’s just really, really cool to see him come out of rock ‘n’ roll, prison, drugs, that kind of lifestyle, to where now he’s literally just a pillar in the house of God.”
Chris quit the secular band to focus on his relationship with God. But he didn’t stop playing music all together.
“I know that God’s the one that put it inside of me to love to play music,” Chris said. “God gave that to me, and God gave that to me to use for Him. So once I laid it down on the altar and gave it to Him, man, has He blessed my socks off. I mean, I’m in a rock ‘n’ roll worship band called “Call to Glory” and it’s just been amazing.”
God has also blessed Chris’ marriage.
“The Lord has done such a work in my wife and I will never be able to repay him for my marriage,” he said. “My marriage is beautiful now and it was a wreck when we first got saved.”
“We would be divorced if it wasn’t for our salvation,” Tracy said, “without a shadow of a doubt. He’s the very foundation that keeps this family together.”
“God is so big and so good and so gnarly that nothing is surprising to Him,” Chris said. “Nobody’s gone too far for God not to reach in and grab them and put them on the rock - because that’s what He did for me.”
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