Word of God saves imprisoned AWOL soldier who now helps others with book
David Mike trains hairstylists for a living in Millard, Neb. He has a family, and is a leader at his church. Reality is far different now for the 46-year-old than the prison walls that contained him more than 20-years-ago in Fort Levenworth, Kan.
AWOL from the Army and deep into drugs is what put the military brat behind bars where guilt, shame and depression engulfed him. But even in that dark place, came a ray of hope through a church ministry.
“Prison is terrible,” Mike said. “It is dark and depressing and I suffered greatly from anxiety.”
It was the loss of a girlfriend that first led Mike to try drugs while serving in the Army in 1989 and he became hooked. Scared of what might happen to him if caught, and not wanting to disappoint his military father, Mike went AWOL.
He was eventually caught, and with testimony from the arresting officer in the case, received a lesser sentence of five years than the 38 that he was initially facing.
Off to Levenworth he went.
While in prison, the first Gulf War broke out. The guilt of failing his country and family was too much for him, and Mike ended up taking LSD while at Levenworth.
That same day, Mike got a letter from his father that was written for Mike’s parole board hearing.
“The letter said that my dad would stake his job, his career, his reputation and his life on the fact that I would never do anything like that ever again...the same day I took LSD. I was at rock bottom,” he said.
Shortly after, Mike was listening to a Christian radio program when a man began speaking about sin, and about how grace through Jesus Christ cancels out all sin, providing forgiveness and redemption to those who are saved by Christ. Mike began to heal.
“I realized with Christ I didn’t have to be defined by my past anymore,” he said. “I had my identity in Christ, and SEE MIKE, PAGE 4
not in being a convicted felon, as a dishonorable discharge, a soldier or a drug dealer.”
Mike began digging deep into God’s Word and he never did drugs again.
After three years in prison, Mike was paroled, and relocated to Omaha where his father had retired. Here he took a job at Capitol School of Hairstyling and Esthetics, where he still works.
About three years ago, Mike started blogging about his experience, and had tremendous feedback from people. With encouragement from his friends and family, he decided to collect his blogs into a book called “Dishonor: One Soldier’s Journey from Desertion to Redemption.”
“I wrote the book to hopefully help people like me, who were dealing with guilt and shame from the past, to find the same solace in God that I did,” he said.
The book has become a top-five bestseller on Amazon.com in Army Biographies, and top-10 bestseller in Christian Inspiration and a top-100 new release overall for books on the web.
For more information on Mike and his book, logon to his website at http://dilemmamike.com/
As Christians, we believe that Jesus offers hope, healing, and a new purpose for each life, even those who once broke the law. According to prisonfellowship.org, between 2003 and 2013, Nebraska’s prison population climbed 20 percent. Nebraska’s prisons are currently operating at 155 percent of capacity and the prison population is projected to grow an additional 12 percent by 2023. Please consider sharing the gospel with and supporting those in prison, jail and detention centers across the state by contacting one of the following ministries, or another ministry in your area.
• Good News Jail & Prison Ministry Eastern Nebraska/Western Iowa— the ministry has chaplains in Douglas, Pottawattamie, and Sarpy County jails. Logon to www.facebook.com/goodnewsjail.nebraska.iowa/ or email email@example.com
• Nebraska State Penitentiary—Call chaplain Bill Perreria, 402-471-3161.
• Prison Fellowship— Prison Fellowship seeks to restore those affected by crime and incarceration by introducing prisoners, victims, and their families to a new hope available through Jesus Christ. Logon to www.prisonfellowship.org and search for Nebraska.
• Crossroads Connection of Omaha— Crossr
oads Connection offers the love and fellowship of Jesus Christ to those inmates still within Omaha Correctional Center. Contact them at 402-516-2403
• Prison Ministries, Lincoln Church of Christ— Currently Bill Hance serves as prison minister. Contact him at 402.466.3113.