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Rick Smith had it all in 2008. He was a local coach, father of three boys, had a wife of 12 years and attended church every Sunday. However, an addiction to pain pills brought all that down around him.
“It was during that time that I surrendered and said ‘God you do with me what you will, but if you give me my life back I will serve you'” said Founder and Director of Rock Bottom Outreach Rick Smith.
The concept of Rock Bottom Outreach was born in that moment from the ashes of Rick’s life.
“I began to look and say if only I would have had a place to turn, and God began to reveal to me that there was a need for outreach” Rick added.
Rick took his love for coaching behind the wires at the Gainesville State School. It is part of the Texas Youth Commission correctional facility for felony offender youth starting at ten years old.
It was there he met Brenda Kirk who had volunteered to help the youth, including trying to place some of them in foster homes. Brenda tried to find a home for a teenager named Mike Pena to no avail.
“No one had room for a teenage boy with three felonies. So sitting at the kitchen table early one morning God said ‘bring him home” Brenda Kirk said.
Brenda brought Mike home and that would be the beginning of a life away from the drugs and alcohol he had grown up with in his childhood.
That selfless act changed Mikes life and now he travels with Rick and Rock Bottom Outreach to tell his story to high schools and colleges around the Southwest.
“If I can just tell my story and touch a few people and they never see the inside of a jail cell then I’ve done what I wanted to do” said Mike Pena.
Brenda and her husband have gone on to foster many young men in their home and continue to make a real difference in the lives of these young men.
Rick is proud of the work they have done, but admits that it is only the beginning for Rock Bottom Outreach. When there are people in need, they will be there.
“That’s where we come in to be the hands and the feet of Jesus” Rick smiled.
JD Ryan is with Rock Bottom Outreach in Krum…Around Town!
Details: Rock Bottom Outreach website
Video: Real Talk in the Real World
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