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Warcry: Amazing love

Kym Lear tells his story to WarcryKym Lear finally crushes the serpent’s head.

‘I don’t know why I’m doing this’, I thought to myself as I prepared to alight from the bus. ‘It’s never worked before and you know it won’t now.’

The ‘it’ was another attempt to stop drinking and the bus was bringing me home from another try at Alcoholics Anonymous and the ‘I’ is me, Kym, an alcoholic and drug user trying for the ‘nth’ time to go dry. 

I thought about the hopelessness of it all. About being discharged from the Air Force for repeated drug and alcohol offences—the night my friends walked me (holding me) to Saint Kilda beach in Melbourne. I had overdosed on heroin and the plan my mates had was that if I did not come through, I could be left on the beach, so as not to lead authorities to them. It was a plan we had all agreed on.

I remembered the black-outs and finding myself in unknown places - sometimes days after my drinking had started. I remembered my father and a doctor having me placed in Hillcrest Hospital and the six years of sobriety that followed, and how quick the fall was after I picked up that first drink.

But mainly I remembered my doctor’s words, ‘Kym if you don’t do something about your lifestyle, I give you six months. If you stop your liver is still at a stage where it can re-generate’. I walked out of his office and down to the pub to process what I had been told.

You know, often when I was drinking I would write poetry about what I was going through, and a common theme in my poems was to refer to my addictions as the ‘serpent in me’. A couple of days after writing my latest poem, my whole world changed.

I found myself sitting in the back of a church with no idea how I had got there. I thought to myself that I must have staggered in there and fallen asleep, but now the problem was how to get out without drawing attention to myself. I remember thinking that I should wait for the guy up front to stop talking and then I could quietly leave.

The next thing, his words were setting off lightning bolts in my head, ‘The seed of the woman will crush the serpents head.’ I was amazed. Who had told this bloke about me, and my poetry and what did his strange message mean? I had no idea, but I remember being suddenly filled with hope and a determination to find out more. 

I promised myself I would keep coming back and something impressed on me to do what they sang about that day—‘Trust and Obey’, which is still one of my favourite songs.

I walked out of that building a different person. All the urges were gone. The wanting and needing to smoke (anything), to drink, inject or snort—all gone.

The next few weeks, I soaked myself in God’s word, I reckon more avidly than I had done all that previous stuff. I remember getting up in the wee small hours and praising and praying with tears running down my face.  

Then I was baptised, a sweet covenant with Jesus to be his. That night the Holy Spirit came.

And now, life is an adventure I could not have imagined. Since that time, God has poured blessing after blessing into my life. First he took away all my addictions, and then he began a work of restoration that still amazes me. And I know there is still so much more.

You know I’ve found out that everything Jesus asks us to surrender, he gives so, so much more. He took the bad, the addictions, the self-hate and insecurities and gave me integrity, self-respect, and the knowledge that I am his.

Then he gave me somebody to truly love. On 2 February 2002 I married my wife Judy. She was secretary at the Marion Salvation Army, where I now attend and where God first spoke to me, filling me with perfect peace.

Other stories from Warcry

To read other stories from past issues of WarCry, click here.