Hi, I’m Todd of the Charging Life project.
Thanks for spending a moment of your time to read about Charging Life! Before I get into what Charging Life is, and why God’s impressed it upon my heart to continue this amazing project, recently God showed me something harsh, hurtful and yet freeing in my life that I feel He is pressing me to share. How I got to where I am, and why Charging Life is so important.
I come from a very, very broken family where mental and physical abuse was the norm. It was family of two other siblings whom were always vying to secure positions of love and attention within the family unit and as it worked out, I was often last on the list.
My life was surrounded by so much anger, betrayal and pain. When I was physically beaten (sometimes twice a day) both mother or father would do it at different times. The mental abuse was a daily occurrence. And if you wanted to talk about anything or questioned anything, zero communication was allowed.
Needless to say it ended messed up, really messed up, so if any of you out there have children, please treat them equally. As a parent you are responsible in the end. When your children go out and start families, there’s a huge chance they will be passing “your” treatment of them onto their children and so on. This is a cycle that does not end yet grows even more dark as time goes on, so please be kind to them and love them often.
After time I quickly spiraled downhill and took up a life of crime, drugs, alcohol and even sought vengeance against those whom bullied me in life. I was an artist in school until I started getting bullied and would come home asking for help from my dad and he just stated “no” or “toughen up”. There was several moments that were horrific to me: one of which was when a loaded shot gun was stuck in my mouth by the star football player at an after party, while the onlookers laughed and laughed. I returned home with the story and my dad said “deal with it,” from that day forward I knew without a doubt my family did not have my back. This destructive path continued for many years and I finally ended up in jail for awhile after I pled guilty for several crimes as I was given a chance to clean the slate and pay for what I did , which involved my aunt (my dads sister) whom was also involved. I did just that and told the truth and at that point my dad, my grandmother and grandfather pretty much disowned me for mentioning his sister and their child, but I was being transparent and knew that it needed to come out.
After that, I made the choice to join the Marines, all to impress my Father, who had stories of grandeur, he would tell me about his time in the Air Guard. Later in life, I found out through my mother a lot of the stories were mostly lies and big exaggerations as well. When I returned my father barely conversed with me unless he had to and it was forced.
Finally I decided I needed to make a break for it and removed myself from all their lives and yes, I traveled a harsh road; A road that took me to a very destructive level with stuff that should have killed me more times than I have fingers on my hands. It was dark but even then I gained wisdom that Im very blessed to have to this day, as I now help others with the same issues.
People love to discard their mistakes, but thats where God picked me up and I noticed Him this time (as the Lord had always been there for me, I just couldn’t see Him through my experiences) and took the steps to being reborn beginning in 2010. I can honestly say, God restores but remember, He many times must take you back to the firestorm you ran from so the refining will be complete. I cannot explain how awesome the clarity is but all I can say is TRUST HIM HE KNOWS WHAT HES DOING.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
After turning myself over to Christ my savior and cleaning up all my addictions from drugs, porn, lying and even cigarettes (all learned from my father), I was directed to start The Charging Life Project with the help of several others in 2011 from the chaos of my former life something good was happening, the project is intended to motivate people to live and have a healthy life through Jesus, health and fitness.
During the first year of operating Charging Life, I had it heavily on my heart to open up communications with my family to see if we could all work things out. I decided to return home in August 2013 after many years, to help with the family and see what we could rebuild from the broken pieces. So heres the very very short version.
I trusted God, gave up everything and moved to Oregon to reunite with all of them. My mom had divorced and remarried a man that had traits similar to my father, yet everything at first was going well. I worked 1000’s of hours on their yard and fixed or restored many things, helped motivate my Mom with her health, taught her what was good and what was not good and made huge headway there for her to get off of pharmaceuticals. Her husband then fell ill with a massive heart attack (mostly due to his very poor eating habits and sedentary lifestyle ) and I took care of the house while they cared for him. After this he still went back to his old bad habits and rejected eating better and always threw it my moms face whenever she expressed that she wanted them both to start eating healthy, whom eventually quit and followed his path to her own heart attack in April of this year 2015. Again I was there to help and one thing stood out these many times adversity came a visiting was where were the other family members? At best they came around when they were needing money, but sadly that is common these days.
Forward to now, 2 years later. The one thing remained that God was working on was me, opening my eyes to the reality of the situation and learning a lesson on freewill. I saw something different that all the guilt I was carrying, and thinking Todd you suck as a person with the image I had of myself from my family (father, mother and sisters) was a false one. They continued these habits to this day constantly positioning for power and spreading lies, just like when I was enduring it at a younger age. I witnessed daily “gossip” and “lies” about other members of the family and even their friends were constantly put down and crazy paranoid stories built about them. If they ever helped you monetarily then that was their part and you were to agree wholeheartedly or it was brought back up as the way to squash any opinion or feelings you had. They do not believe in simple communication, your feelings do not matter, unless you comply with their wishes always….you’re going to have a hard time if you disagree with their actions or words. If you have a problem this family will not help you work through it, they will discard you asap before they have to take a look in the mirror and call everyone they feel is pertinent to their agenda to slander lies about you.
“Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit.” “The poison of vipers is on their lips.” Romans 3:13
I had to endure and work through all of it in prayer and stay patient until I could leave again. I tried to keep seeing the good, I really tried to think this wasn’t real and hoped so much it would just change. During the last months there my prayers were God protect me from my enemies, God show me the truth and please God make a new way for me. Well the prayers were answered in way I was least expecting, yet thats how it happens much of the time, so in short they kicked me to the streets said they “hated me,” were “sick of me” called me “Jesus freak” and so on after I asked for pastoral mediation with all members of the family to work through this and gain healing. Well I had my answer so this time was the last time,I forgive them but I’ve had to give them to our Lord to fix up and restore.
It was excruciating living in such a toxic environment and after hearing the harsh words, reliving my past every time during those moments it was time for me to finally move on. I am thankful God showed me the truth as a I was praying for that for months before as well for Him to protect me and remove them once again from my life. Please pray for restoration for them.
The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me? Psalms 118:6
I am now homeless, without hardly any money to eat and am still running the Charging Project as best I can, but need a blessing from Him to keep it going. Running the Charging Life Project has been the hardest and most challenging blessing I have done, even as even my own family members persecute me and are spending time calling everyone they know to continue the lies, so they are not exposed. We know God sees everything, so I rest in that.
Currently the project is still continuing. All of my money went into it and my daily time was 4-6 hours per day minimum working it everyday of the past 4 years.
I called upon the LORD in distress: the LORD answered me, [and set me] in a large place. Psalms 118:5
Charging Life receives millions of visitors to the website and the prayer section is visited by thousands daily. If you take the time to read though the comments, you can see how many hurt people God is touching, using Charging Life as the vessel. Our social networks reach hundreds of thousands daily. We have delivered water and food to people on the streets from Phoenix AZ to Portland OR as well thousands of Bibles….all credit to Him.
We have others writing in that are being hunted and persecuted, we have people asking for health or fitness advice simple put its a well rounded project God has put together for all to see that are meant to see this. Heres a link to our marriage restoration prayer which has 300+ people helping each other work through very painful issues in their marriages.
I have no idea, or can even contemplate how many people are impacted by this project, which has received very little outside money since its conception. I’ve put my life and finances into it, and then some. I’m thankful for those people that have gave what they could to keep it online.
I am fully trusting Christ, as he directed me to post this and asking if you can please help me get back on my feet so I can setup a place to continue and build this project further, as many times during the past 4 years, things have tried to stop it but God’s always encouraged me and impressed upon my heart to keep it moving forward. I need some assistance in keeping Charging Life moving forward and I am trusting my story and this mission touches your heart.
I can say this is has been the most epic selfless project I have ever been involved with in my life and Im thankful God brought me to it and strengthened me through it. This is a very very short version of my story and as time goes on I’am inspired to write it all as it brings healing to all involved. To my family reading this I still would like Pastoral Mediation as I verbally mentioned as we all need healing in a big way. I love you and God bless you.
Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Romans 12:13
In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:16
Thank you for your generosity and God Bless you.
**Please help us continue this project by donating as we run on very limited funds to keep it going. God bless and thank you.