A patient man has great understanding, but a quick-tempered man displays folly. – Proverbs 14:29 NIV
Born in York, PA on November 7th, 1935, George grew up in a fairly decent family life. Even though he started drinking at age 14, life wasn’t too difficult. George married at the age of 19. Then with a wife and four children, George began working long hours, six, seven days a week. One Saturday he was scheduled to work four hours but subsequently changed to two hours. The company sent him home. What he found at home, changed his life, changed George. That Saturday he found his wife in bed with his best friend.
Anger took control of his life. George didn’t consider himself a violent man, but he fought back and wouldn’t give up. The anger, fighting and drinking continued for thirty years, gaining George a reputation but not the kind of reputation most people would want. He was kicked out of and banned from most of the bars in York because of his fighting and drinking. Wherever he went, when people heard George’s name, they would pick a fight from which he wouldn’t back down. Through the years, George had been in and out of jail for fighting and drinking. Jobs were the same. The longest he held onto a job was nine years, an eternity for someone in George’s shoes. He lost jobs and continued to fight and drink. He also lost the relationship with his children and went through two marriages.
Then one day in 1992, October 19th to be exact, George walked into the York Rescue Mission for what he thought would be a place to stay for a night or two. George seemed to have enough money for a drink, but not for a place to stay. He stayed wherever he could and was in and out of the different shelters in the area including the York Rescue Mission. Then that night, October 19th, something happened. During Chapel, John 3:16 was read, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life”. George accepted Jesus as his Savior. He asked forgiveness of his sins and has not had a single drink in almost 22 years. He has also learned to let go of his anger. George went through the Mission’s program and worked throughout the Mission, doing whatever needed done. The best years of his life were the nine years he managed the kitchen. George loves to cook!
Before George came to the Mission, his one son committed suicide while in jail. This was a hard time for George as he wasn’t able to be there for his son. But since coming to the Mission and turning his life over to Christ, George has been able to redevelop relationships with all of his remaining children. George had four children with his first wife, including the son that died, two with his second wife, and he also adopted his second wife’s three children. George is also a proud grandfather of 18 and a great-grandfather of eleven.
George could have left the Mission a long time ago, but he wanted to give back, give back to those who have helped him. Today George is part of the Mission’s Senior Foster Care. He has his own apartment and pays rent with his limited income. But he is at the Mission almost every day helping wherever he can. Some days he answers the phone or just talks and encourages those who are now where he walked years ago. Whatever he does, George brings a smile and a ray of sunshine with him…..and no anger.