While Mark Wahlberg was succeeding in Hollywood, his brother Jim was racking up a long police record. Because of his multiple felonies, he was in and out of prison. But, Jesus is no respecter of people and places. It was inside the jail where Mother Teresa helped Jim come to know Jesus.
Jim Wahlberg got exposed to crimes at a young age. When he was eight, their family moved to a middle-class neighborhood. Then, he realized that they were different because they were poor. “So, I started taking things that didn’t belong to me, he said. “So that I could try to live up to the way they got to live.”
It began a life of stealing, deceiving, and running from the police for Jim. He first got arrested when he was ten. But since then, he became a regular in the juvie.
Moreover, he got addicted to drugs and alcohol. “I start drinking alcohol under the pretense of I’m celebrating, right? But I wasn’t celebrating. I was medicating myself,” he said. “I was trying to soothe that fear, that uncomfortability.”
Jim continued, “I was the most dangerous I had ever been. I was the most afraid I had ever been.”
His alcohol dependence caused him to have “black-out episodes.” One day, he found himself inside a cop’s house, covered in his own blood. Consequently, it put him in prison once again.
But, this time, Jim entered self-help groups only to reduce his time. He pretended to get better.
But, one day, the prison’s priest convinced him to attend mass. And there, Jim met Mother Teresa.
He recalled, “She said, ‘You’re more than the crimes that you’ve committed to be here. You’re more than your prison ID number. You are a child of God.”
Mother Teresa’s message brought enlightenment to Jim. He finally prayed to God and asked Him for rescue. And indeed, God came to his rescue.
Jim entered Bible studies because of his interest in God and was able to stop his addictions. But, when he was out of prison, he also got out of his relationship with God.
“I was weak in my relationship with God,” says Jim. “And I was just a weak human being. And God got further and further away. I said, ‘Thank you, I’ll take it from here.'”
For the next few decades, Jim succeeded in life. He was the executive director of the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation for the inner-city kids. He also got married and had three lovely kids. Despite all of these, he still felt empty.
His daughter, Kyra, who was only 12, urged him to be back to church. She said, “Daddy, I want you to be happy. I want you to know Jesus.”
So, Jim joined a Christian’s men retreat. And there, God reintroduced Himself. “God started to reveal Himself to me again. And He started to melt away the ice that was my heart,” he shared. “I mean, I started crying, and I couldn’t stop. Right? I was just so overwhelmed. And I just felt so at peace.”
It reignited Jim’s heart for God and His people. Today, he dedicates his life to helping others towards sobriety and faith.
Reference: CBN News