The 700 Club with Pat Robertson

Amazing Transformation

Jemal Farrell: Finally Out of the Business

By Michelle Wilson
The 700 Club "Certain people sell crack. Certain people sell marijuana. I sold heroin," says Jemal Farrell of his former days.

"For eight years, Jemal Farrell ran his heroin business in Baltimore, MD., and his profits were staggering.

"We made over 20 to 25,000 a day selling heroin," he remembers.

Jemal grew up in a rough neighborhood in Corona Queens, NY. Almost daily, he  witnessed drug deals and street violence.

"I remember driving by, and my aunts and grandmother were in the car. And there were times that you know, I said, 'Okay, now duck.' You know, and there were gunshots. And there was a lot of shooting around in the area ... a lot of killing."

Jemal’s mother raised him with the help of his aunts' and grandmother. Fortunately, watching people take drugs and die from them – actually kept Jemal from ever wanting to use drugs himself.

"You see the crack heads, you see the people on heroin. But it was something in me that said, 'I will never do that.' "

As a teenager, Jemal found a good job working at a cable company, and he married his highschool sweetheart, Janel. But eventually, Jemal got fired from his job after he was caught selling illegal cable boxes. That’s when he started a new business – selling heroin.

"By the time I got from 106th Street to 101st Street, whatever I had was sold," he says.

As a dealer, Jemal had enough money to buy fancy cars and expensive jewelry. And adultery became an almost daily occurrence. 

Janel {Jemal's wife] recalls, "It was like not just one or two situations where I found out that he was seeing someone else, it was a lot of them, and it really hurt me in so many ways."

Jemal knew the consequences of the street life could mean prison or even death, but he took the risk anyway. One day, while on a drug run, Jemal was arrested for drug possession and attempting to distribute. Because it was his first drug “offense” he was given two years probation.

"I knew that he wanted to change, and I still kept on praying for him and believing God would really deliver him and save him from the world that he was living in," says Janel.

One day, while Jemal was out of town and his wife was at work, some rivals came to his home, tied up his children and sister-in-law, threw them into a closet , and robbed him. The robbery of his home and nearly losing his children wasn’t enough to cause Jemal to get out of “the business.” But something happened one day in front of his television that changed his life.

"I was counting about $90,000 worth by myself. In my mind I was repeating, 'It’s just no peace.' I ’m just saying that to myself. I’m like, 'There’s got to be more to life.' "

"Then all of a sudden, I see a man of God on the video, and he had his arms folded. He didn’t say anything. I just started crying and weeping and I was like, 'God, it's gotta be more than this.' You know, I just pushed the money down and I said, 'God if you just get me out of this, just give me some peace, if You can just change my life ... I ’ll give it up.' ” 

Jemal’s sincere cry for help began his journey toward change. His first step was to tell his drug partners that he was getting out of the business.

"I’m just talking to God, and i’m walking down the street saying, 'What am I going to tell my friends?' "

Then he got a call 20 minutes later.

"Yo, I gave my life to Christ, man,” Jemal tells his friend. "Yeah, I gave it up.”

"He [Jemal's friend] said, 'You gave it up?' "

And then Jemal said, “Yeah, man I can’t do this no more.'

"And what really touched me is, I guess God dealt with his heart and he’s like, 'Yo man, you’re my man forever.' And he said, 'Whatever you decide to do man, I ’m down with you.' He said, 'That’s a good move.' And the weights were lifted off my shoulder," says Jemal.     

After Jemal stepped away from the drug world, he moved with his wife and children to Florida to start over. But Jemal’s struggles with lust for other women came with him. That’s when he became friends with Pastor Ardell Daniels who invited him to church. There at the altar, he cried out to God for forgiveness and deliverance. 

"I was praying that whatever was in me that's not of God would come out. So I said, 'Well, you know God, you know I ’m coming to the altar. I’m coming to lay it all down to get delivered from lust and perversion, for it to be broken and destroyed from my life.' ” 

"When he [Jemal] came to the altar, you know it was almost like you could see that he just really said, 'Alright God if you are real, and if you’re a real God then you can get rid of this thing that’s troubling me,' " says Pastor Daniels.

His wife knew it was real.

"He was finally delivered and set free from lust and perversion. He had stopped selling drugs and dealing with old friends and stuff like that. And that was very exciting for me," says Janel.

Today, Jemal volunteers in his church and runs a successful real estate management company where he buys and renovates older properties to resell. 

"Even though you’re not making that type of money, the $25,000 a day or $10,000 a day, or whatever you might make a day, you know there's nothing more fulfilling than serving God. There’s a peace that comes on you. I can come home now, and I’m home," says Jemal. "God has blessed us tremendously. You know, He gave us a business and a beautiful home, and our kids are happy. When people look at me now, they might be like, 'Naaw.' You can’t do anything but give God the glory because it’s all God."

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