Licensed minister since 2009 (Church of God)
Studied at Berean Bible College in Missouri
Completed the Ministerial Internship Program in the COG(April 2008)
Seeing Hell for the First Time
AN EARLY INTRODUCTION TO DRUGS
Randy Hicks’ drug use and his eventual overdose had kept him living in darkness since early in his childhood. He grew up one of nine children in rural Illinois, with little parental supervision. His older brothers grew marijuana hidden in their garden. Their father, not knowing what it was, thought it was flowers and left the plants alone. Randy smoked pot for the first time in 1972, when an older brother gave him a hit off of a bong. "I got high when I was eight years old,” he remembers. “Two of my brothers had got me out in the garage smoking a bong. That was the first time I ever used marijuana. I’ll never forget it, I loved it.” By the time Randy was in the eighth grade in 1977, he was selling joints at school. Randy also started using cocaine after finding his brothers’ stash. “I didn’t know what it was and I touched it and it had numbed my lips. And I was like wow, that’s some strange stuff,” he says. “And one day I just happened to watch my brother sniff it and I sniffed some too. And by the time I got to high school, I was a freshman, you know, people –people were selling it to make money.” By the time he was a senior in high school, he was selling big time.
At the age of 18, Randy joined the military and moved to California. “Well, up there crystal meth was big. When I got up there, I got hooked up with the wrong people, I started drinking heavier, and then I really started going on a binge with crystal meth,” he says. “I was so addicted; it was like I couldn’t live without it. I breathed it from the time I got up in the morning to the time I went to bed. I started selling stuff to get it.” Eventually Randy was sent to rehab, and then ultimately was released from the military. “It bothered me. I was like man, I had this great opportunity to turn my life around. Why did I go back to doing the drugs?” After his discharge, Randy subsequently ended up in prison for committing an armed robbery. "I didn't even remember stealing. I didn't even realize I was locked up for the first three days." Randy spent 11 months and 29 days in prison. Upon his release in the late '80s, he resumed his occupation as a drug dealer. "I sold a lot of cocaine and had plenty of money."
Around the age of 26, Randy overdosed. He collapsed while walking down the street and was rushed to the hospital. Randy’s family was called in to say their goodbyes. Meanwhile, Randy was having a near-death experience. “They went ahead and pulled the white sheet up on me,” Randy says. “They said, ‘He’s done.’ When I woke up, it was the most frightening moment because I looked down and I’m looking at a white sheet.” Randy says that over the course of the night, his Christian mother prayed him off his death bed. The doctors were amazed that Randy survived, but after running tests, he was released. Unfortunately, even that near-death experience wasn’t enough to scare Randy straight. “It scared me enough to go to church, but not enough to change me. I kept playing with the dope. I went through the motions but never gave my heart to the Lord. I knew something was there but didn't really grasp it." Randy married, but the alcohol and drug use continued, eventually destroying the relationship. In 1997, Randy’s wife left him with their two young children. Even when he had his kids, he was still drinking, smoking weed and using some cocaine.
TRIP TO HELL
Randy’s outlook on life and death was changed forever when he collapsed at his parents’ house and had another near-death experience. “All of a sudden my body collapsed to the ground. I felt something physically dragging me out of my body. And I mean, I looked up and I saw death and I saw Hell in his eyes. And it had these huge horns, it curled around like a ram. And death just filled the room. And it scared me,” Randy says, describing his experience on the edge of Hell. “I could physically feel my spiritual man separating from my flesh. I didn’t feel any pain, but I felt it leaving, trembling in fear.” In that moment, Randy cried out to God. “And immediately I fell on my face and I cried out, Jesus, I said, forgive me of my sins. God help me with my addictions, take it all away, and just don’t let me go to Hell. Please, I was begging, I was crying, I did everything I knew. And suddenly, just out of nowhere there was this perfect peace that filled the room. I mean, it was so peaceful. And as soon as I looked at the door, my door opened. And I saw this long, white, glowing robe, white, there was just no white in this world you can describe it, and I knew, I knew without a doubt that the moment I cried out for Jesus, that God had showed up right there and saved me at the moment I cried out.”
Randy says when he awoke the next day, in his bed, he’d been delivered from his addictions and had a new hunger for the Lord. “God instantly healed me. He dealt with me. God totally healed me from addictions. He saved me and took everything away. God gave me a choice. I'm done,” he says. “From that moment, I just wanted to know God. I wanted to know Jesus. I wanted to know this One who, when I knew without a doubt I was going to Hell, came for me.” Randy called his pastor and went to the church to meet with him right away. He says he’s never had a taste or desire for drugs since that experience. "People need to know, it's no joke. Once you die, it's Heaven or Hell."
For years, Hicks would receive words of knowledge at different services about being "called into the ministry." In 2009, he became certified and entered ministry full time as an evangelist. He is seeing a large number of salvations and healings.
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