The Rollercoaster From Hell
August 26, 2002 • By Ed Wrather
They wandered in the wilderness in a desolate way; they found no city to dwell in. Hungry and thirsty, their soul fainted in them. Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and He delivered them out of their distresses. And He led them forth by the right way. - Psalm 107:4-7a.
Richard Rodriguez has spent the summer riding a rollercoaster for ten hours a day trying to set a new world record for rollercoaster endurance. Rodriguez is 42 years old and is a lecturer at the University of Chicago. To take his mind off of the stomach turning and churning rides in the German town of Hassloch he says, “I read the newspapers, I have a walkman, I have my cellphone, so I try to talk to people and message people during the day. I’ve been on this rollercoaster for quarter of a year now, so I am kind of anxious for the ending.”
Hard to imagine spending an entire summer riding a rollercoaster! However, some people spend much of their lives on a spiritual rollercoaster. Paula J. Anderson shares of her rollercoaster ride: “I was brought up in the church, I loved school and was an honor student. A happy child hood I had. I went astray at the young age of 14 years old. I got pregnant so I decided to get married. I was 15 years old when my first son was born. I would eventually have four more children out of wedlock, three girls and one more boy. I didn't understand and couldn't cope with the responsibilities of taking care of a husband or a child. I strayed even further away from my family responsibilities and God.”
“At 16, I was introduced to heroin by a neighbor, an ex-marine. I liked the calm, peaceful feelings it gave me. I became immediately addicted and started "shooting up" every day. I left my husband and child to begin a life-style of drugs, prostitution, and shoplifting. For the next 25 years of my life, I never really lived, but only existed day to day in this human shell. I would do almost anything for my next fix, whenever that pain and want in my body took control. I jumped from one drug to the next, whatever was easily available and affordable. Always looking for that numbing warm feeling that gave me that artificial peace.”
“In a one year period I overdosed and was comatose nine times! I was sent to the State Hospital and was diagnosed as suicidal and certified an addict. I've had many serious operations and a finger removed due to my intravenous drug use. My heart is now damaged from drug abuse. I've lost everything dear to me.”
“I tried many drug treatment programs without success. I went on Methadone Maintenance for many years, another addiction, but it was cheap, legal and it kept me out of jail. I sit in prison today, 42 years old, and at the end of my five year sentence….”
Paula has been on a wild roller coaster ride but she did find the way off as she says, “I sit in prison today, 42 years old, and at the end of my five year sentence, a new woman in Christ. My Lord and Savior has pulled me out of the pit and off of Satan's rollercoaster of Hell. I have found a new program for my survival: "THE JESUS PROGRAM". Through him I have that warmth, love and a peace no drug or man could ever compare too!! Praise the Lord, I was lost but now I'm found, my faith in him will heal me!”
If you’ve been on the rollercoaster from hell maybe it is time to cry out to the Lord so He can deliver you.