Chris White: His Last Deal
By Audra Smith
The 700 Club
“When I was growing up, we didn’t have a lot. We were kind of a poor family, but until I got into the 5th grade, we didn’t have running water or lights. We had a spring that was down by our house, and we would get water from there.”
Chris White entered adulthood with one focus — overcoming the poverty of his rural Tennessee childhood. He tells The 700 Club, “I told myself I am never going to be that way. I never wanted to go back to that. So when I saw that opportunity to make money. I jumped on it.”
By the age of 20, Chris was married with a newborn daughter. He found a path to quick money in the night clubs of his city.
“You see people there with nice cars. You see people come in with jewelry, and one of the reasons why is they were the drug dealers. I thought, ‘Wow, that’s what I want to be, that hunger for the attention.”
Chris and his wife, LeiDenia, began to sell the drug ecstasy every weekend.
“He told me about this nice little drug he’d found,” she says. “Ciara was my life. ‘So, you go out and do what you want to do. I am going to stay home and be the mother.’ That soon changed, because I wanted to experience what he was experiencing.”
Chris says, “It was nothing to walk around with a couple of thousand dollars in my pocket everywhere I went.”
LeiDena recalls, “He would get anywhere from 100 to 200 pills a weekend and be done with them by Saturday have no leftovers.”
“We went out and bought anything we wanted,” Chris says. “A drug dealer has a mentality that you are never going to get caught. Friends were telling me, ‘You are going too fast. You need to slow down,’ and I didn’t listen to nobody.”
One afternoon, Chris’s life took a shocking turn.
“I was pulling into my apartment. When I pulled up on my motorcycle, and I noticed that someone was running across the parking lot. He started a beeline for me. As he got closer, he drew his gun. The first thing I thought in my mind was, ‘I’m getting robbed.’ I took a step back, and I heard some more noises. I turned around, and there were about five or six more police officers behind me with guns to my head as well.”
Chris was locked in county jail that day and was released. However, over the next few months, Chris’s reputation led to four arrests in several different counties.
“When I got caught selling, I had a lot of stuff. I had cars, motorcycles, money… I had a little bit of everything. When I got caught, I lost it all.”
Finally, Chris lost what was most precious to him. LeiDena decided to take Ciara and start a new life.
LeiDena says, “It was hard, because as much as I loved him, I wanted to run away from what was going on.”
Chris responds, “My mind just started thinking. I mean, there is no sense in even living anymore, because everything was going downhill. I was losing everything I loved. Everything that I cared for was leaving me.”
A few months later, Chris crossed paths with a childhood friend. He says, “He began to tell me about God and say he had just got saved. He was all excited about God, and he was explaining all the things about how his life was changing. I just thought, ‘That’s not for me.’
“What do I say to God? I’ve never really prayed to God, so I don’t know what to say. He said, ‘Just pray to God that He brings your family back.’
“I prayed a prayer that I will never forget. It was one that I really meant. I just prayed to God and said, ‘I want this to end. I want my family back. I want my little girl back.’ I remember telling God., ‘If you bring my family back, I promise I’ll go to church.’”
Just weeks later, Chris received a phone call from LeiDena who wanted to restore their relationship. “I was just so excited,” Chris says. “I knew I was in the right spot the moment I walked through the door.”
“I remember when I was in church, and pastor gave an altar call at service. He told everybody, “if they were ready to change their life, ready to give all of it to God, ready to wash their sins away, their past, to raise their hands.’ So, I remember raising my hand and not caring what everybody else felt, because I knew I was doing the right thing. I noticed that my life began to change right there, because I was ready. I was ready to change my old ways and give up my old life.”
LeiDena says, “He gave his life to Christ in October and not long after that I rededicated my life back to Christ.”
However, only months later, Chris was called before a judge to face the drugs charges filed against him.
“He hit that little hammer down and sentenced me to a year and a day in prison,” he says. “A year and day in prison away from my family, away from my little girl, but I had a good spirit about it because I knew God was in it. I would read my Bible everyday and put my faith in God in everything I do. God started changing me slowly each and every day.”
LeiDena says with tears, “So I had to rely on my church family to pull me through and keep me strong to be able on the day he got out to be the wife that I had come to be over the year that he was gone. God worked on me so much. The day he got out was the best day ever. We were able to put our life back together, and we were both stronger for that.”
Chris says, “Jesus can fix anything. Jesus can make you feel whole again. That emptiness inside of you can be refilled by Jesus. All you have to do is accept Jesus as your personal Savior, and He will refill you with hope.”
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