I've spoken a lot about Teen Challenge in the last few posts. I thought it might be helpful to explain a bit about it, since some haven't heard of this program.
I first heard of this organization back in the early 70s when my husband and I were teen sponsors in our church. We took a group of teen-agers over to the eastern part of the state one evening for a rally with David Wilkerson. Dave started this program in 1958 when he felt called by God from a pastorate in rural Pennsylvania to the roughest part of New York City to work with lost and broken kids. You can read his story in his book called The Cross and the Switchblade.
Fast forward to about 4 years ago when I heard that the son of an old friend had gone to Teen Challenge. I didn't know the whole story, but knew that it usually involved drug addiction if you went there. Three years ago, our son needed help and we tried to steer him in TC's direction. He was not interested at the time, because he would have to take a year of his life to get well. It will be two years in December when things were at a point that he finally realized his need of major help and decided to take this giant step of faith. Usually a person has to be at a point of death or jail to be ready to do this program.
You can go to http://www.teenchallengeusa.com/ to learn more about the philosophy, the locations, and basic information about Teen Challenge. It is not only for teens; in fact, most of those who go are adults. Our son went far away from home so that he would not be tempted to bolt and go back to his old friends and habits. It was a very difficult time for all of us. He ended up staying for 18 months, but it was worth every difficult moment. God took over in such a mighty way. Those who go to a TC setting are called students. And that is exactly what they are. They study for hours every day on a Bible-based curriculum. They spend many other hours a day in some sort of work activity. His particular work assignment was fund-raising at store fronts all up and down the eastern seaboard. He could write a book about those experiences! There were many times when he wanted to give up and come home. But prayer and encouragement from many sources kept him strong.
TC is a probably not for everyone. As I said before, you have to be at the very end of yourself and your man-made solutions. God works in mighty and miraculous ways when He is allowed to. We give Him all the praise. We also have tremendous gratitude to those who prayed for and supported him throughout this time of healing and deliverance.