‘God Is Real’: Former Addict Baptized in Same Church He Vandalized 6 Months Prior

‘God Is Real’: Former Addict Baptized in Same Church He Vandalized 6 Months Prior By  for Faith Wire

GNN Note – That’s how God works. On occasion we struck, like lightening, with the Holy Spirit and can’t do anything about it!


A former drug addict who was recently baptized in the church he burglarized earlier this year is speaking out about his miraculous encounter with God’s redemption. Brenton Winn was hell-bent on his own destruction when he entered Central Baptist Church in Conway, Ark., on Feb. 28 — but God had different plans.

Winn, 23, who was high on methamphetamines after relapsing from a faith-based recovery program, broke into the church, destroying $100,000 of church property, Baptist Press reported. The young man didn’t pick Central Baptist for any particular reason — all he knew was that he was mad a God, and he “felt desperate.”

After completing a two-week recovery program in 2016, Winn stayed clean for a year, getting a job at a local Lowe’s store. He traces his relapse back to September 2017, right after his cousin committed suicide. Soon, he was homeless, hopeless, and full of anger toward God.

Last month, Winn stood before the congregation whose house of worship he’d wrecked months before, and received the sacrament of baptism from Associate Pastor Mike Lefler. He says he believes God used his bad intentions for good, even guiding him to Central that night back in February, knowing all the damage he would cause.

“As I’m starting to understand how God works, I’ve realized I didn’t pick the church that night. God picked me,” Winn told Baptist Press. “If it had been any other church, I think I’d be sitting in prison right now.”

It all began when Senior Pastor Don Chandler met with the prosecutor on his case just days after Winn vandalized the church. For Chandler, forgiveness wasn’t an option — it was an imperative.

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