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Today in Health & Wellness

From Drug Addict to Disciple of God

By: Michael John Encarnacion, MDFrom Drug Addict to Disciple of God

How can a former drug addict, a prisoner, a murderer at 17, a careless teenage father at 18, a violent and lawless man, and an adulterer suddenly turn his life around and become a servant of God?

This is the story of Danny Urquico, who enjoyed a selfish and worldly life at a very young age only to realize that life is miserable apart from God. And by His grace and mercy, Danny came to know the Lord and surrendered his life to God.

Growing up in a highly dysfunctional family, Danny developed hatred towards his father who after his release from 15 years imprisonment in Muntinlupa, stayed only a few years before leaving them to be with his mistress. In those few years he caused tremendous pain, trauma, and suffering to his whole family through verbal and physical abuse.  As a result, Danny lived a rebellious life despite the love and care of his mother. He started smoking at the age of 9, took cough syrup and marijuana at 11, got involved in innumerable fistfights and appeared on the front page of a tabloid for sexual assault. He also got involved in a murder, jailed for carnapping and robbery, became a college drop-out, took shabu for a period of 15 years from the age of 17, and had adulterous relationships with two to three women at the same time during his married life.

Danny married Dawn after five years of living together. Though they had a Christian wedding, Danny continued living a worldly life much worse than before. But it was Dawn’s strong faith, forgiveness, and unconditional love that greatly encouraged her to hold on to God’s promise of restoring their marriage. That gave her the hope to wait patiently and expectantly at the Lord’s sovereignty that He can change Danny, and God proved to be faithful in His promise.

When Danny left his wife Dawn and their two boys to be with his mistress, Danny wanted to file for annulment so he can get married again. But because Dawn kept her decision firm to fight for their marriage, Danny attempted to kill his own family. Danny told Dawn and her two boys to go inside a collapsible tent inside their room, and it was his then two-year-old son’s joyous laughter that stopped Danny from pulling the trigger. Danny’s life became more miserable in his search for happiness in wrong relationships and vices until God brought him into a situation where he had nowhere to go but to Him. After failing to kill his own family, Danny got involved in two major car accidents and was shot on three separate occasions. Living a very lonely life led him to attempt suicide twice.

One afternoon, Danny used a rifle to shoot his neighbor after a heated discussion and a case of frustrated homicide was filed against him. Tipped by a policeman to go into hiding, he sought for the help of his wife Dawn, which gave him an opportunity to go back to his family. In that time, Danny started attending Small Group and Sunday Services with his wife. It was at the Dawn Watch morning prayer in Christ’s Commission Fellowship (CCF) where he experienced the grace and love of the Lord, confessed his sins, surrendered his anger and bitterness towards his father, and accepted Jesus as His Lord and Savior.

Since that fateful day, Danny was a changed man: a faithful husband, a caring father, and a passionate and compassionate servant of God. In 2005, he became a youth pastor for East. He also founded the BInigyang laYA ni HEsus (BIYAHE) Jail Ministry and the GAbay sa LAndas Foundation (GALA), which is a shelter for abused and abandoned street children. Three years after, he was given an opportunity to become the pastor of CCF Taytay. In 2013, he was given a bigger task to become the Hub Pastor of CCF East, overseeing 15 CCF churches in the areas of Rizal province and Quezon City. His recent project is the SIPAG Recovery Program for the drug surrenderers, which is in partnership with the Dangerous Drugs Board and is being implemented in various key cities and provinces nationwide.

Both Danny and Dawn are active in counseling families, especially couples with marital issues. They also travel nationwide and abroad to conduct couples seminars. Truly, their story is a testament to God’s faithfulness, grace, and unconditional love that gives hope to many people. Indeed, with God nothing is impossible!
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