Testimony of James F


My name is James . I am 51 years of age, Born in Cork on 6/1/1959. My testimony is of a life of bondage to alcohol until I was finally set free from my addiction through the power of Jesus.

I grew up in a good catholic home in Friars Walk, Cork. I attended the local Christians Brothers school where I enjoyed my school days excelling in both academics and sports. My father, a carpenter, worked hard to provide for us and my mum looked after our home. I had a happy childhood and there was lots of love   and laughter in our house. I along with my brother and sister had a good upbringing.

To the best of my recollection I was 17 years of age when I first started to drink alcohol. At that time we used to go to a disco every Saturday night which was held in the Arcadia Ballroom. That was the highlight of the week for us back then, getting dressed up to the “nines” and off to the Arcadia.

Alcohol was not sold at the disco, however it was readily available at The Killarney Bar which was next door to the Arcadia. It was there that I had my first drink. Little did I know then that when I took that first drink while sitting at the counter of The Killarney Bar , feeling like a” real man” that I had opened the door to a real life of misery which was to last some 32 years . It was a life of pain and sorrows culminating with being admitted to a psychiatric ward at the CUH coupled with a profound desire to commit suicide.

What happened you may ask? How did it come to this? Was there some tragedy occurred to cause this? Surely there was something!!!

From the outside looking in I was living a successful life. I had everything going for me. In my twenties I had a good career, was well paid, had company cars, foreign trips and expense accounts. In my thirties I was married , had a daughter, my own house and my own business. However on the inside there was so much turmoil going on. I spent my days looking for something but never knowing what I was seeking. My heart was a black hole that I couldn’t fill and the more alcohol I poured into that hole the bigger and blacker it got. Slowly but surely alcohol took control of me. It wrapped its chains of bondage around my heart , strangling any hope I had of escaping its clutches. My only way out of this pain and emptiness was death and that is what I wished for. I used to cry “ just let me die”

On Jan 2nd 2009 I came to Reformers Unanimous, a broken man , full of anger, hatred and bitterness, full of blame and self pity, addicted to alcohol and blaming God for my entire mess. I soon learned that I was in the right place, that I had to come as I was, that I couldn’t change myself but someone else could and that someone was Jesus. The Bible tells us in the book of Luke 19:10 “For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” How true those words which Jesus spoke are. My entire life is now changed, it is full and complete. I now entrust everything to Jesus knowing that whatever may come my way in life , by trusting in Him and in His strength, all will  be well. I am secure in the knowledge of  what Jesus did for me at Calvary and His resurrection from the dead and the glory to come.

I came to RU lost but Jesus found me. Amen

As for alcohol my last drink was on 31 December 2008. I never desire or think about drinking now and know for sure that I never again will. John 8:32 “And ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free