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October 23

A Life Turned Around: Johnny Cash’s Spiritual Legacy II

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Hear ye! Hear ye! The testimony of Johnny Cash at 50. He recounted how he attempted to commit suicide in 1967. Drowning in drugs and misery, Cash thought it best to end his life. Thankfully, God intervened and gave him another beginning.

From then on, along with his musical profession, Cash committed his remaining years in helping those who were also down in substance abuse to break free from the addiction through turning to faith and to Jesus. In fact, he saw that to be his ultimate purpose on earth (regardless of how great fans thought of him and his music to be). Once, he remarked,

“Only someone who has had such a problem (as substance abuse) can have complete love and compassion and understanding for such people. I love drug addicts. And I love alcoholics. When Jesus said He was sent to heal the brokenhearted and preach deliverance to the captives, I believe these were some of the people he was talking about.”

Behind the scenes, and away from the spotlight, Cash worked with those people mentioned above. In 2014, during a memorial service for him, the officiating minister testified of Cash’s dedication to his cause. He said,

“I can’t tell you how many spoke up and said that he was instrumental in them coming to faith in Christ. And some of them said he helped them clean their lives up—pointed them toward getting off drugs and alcohol. And pointed them toward good, and away from evil.”

Speaking firsthand from experience, Cash completely knew the struggle. His recovery was gradual and not instantaneous. Sadly, some interpreted the inconsistency as hypocrisy, yet he persevered. That made him the right person to tell former addicts the following words and was believed.

“If you are going to be a Christian, you are going to change.”


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