Timothy Field is a veteran of the Iraq War and a single father. He’s sharing his story of battling addiction, finding freedom, and discovering purpose.
From Battlefield to Battle Inside
I was deployed to Iraq right after 9/11. My father passed away during my senior year of high school and my mother took it hard. She started getting sick and it got to the point where she couldn’t take care of me anymore so I knew that I had to find a way to take care of myself. The military was the easiest thing — or so I thought…
No one can ever prepare you to see the things I saw and experienced overseas.
When I returned home to Riverside, I returned to a world that had continued on without me. A lot changed. I decided to go back to school and take advantage of the G.I. Bill. But with that money coming in, I thought the best way to cope with my life and my pain was to turn to drugs and alcohol. I had many “friends” during this time and partying became the way of life… until I ran out of money.
I met a girl in college around this same time. We casually saw each other for a while but one day I got an unexpected call that changed my life… I was going to be a dad.
I really tried to step up for my daughter and her mom but I was neck deep in my addictions and my efforts failed miserably. Eventually, they left me.
My life was unraveling and I knew I had to get my life together so I started attending recovery programs.
A Life-Changing Weekend
Almost 8 years had gone by and I had barely seen Bailee, my daughter. One day, the phone rang — it was her grandma — and I now had full custody of Bailee.
Just like that my life changed — again. I was no longer an addict but I was still struggling financially to fully take care of myself; and now I was a full-time, single dad.
No one can ever prepare you to be a full-time single father to an 8-year old girl.
The first day I brought Bailee home, I had nothing in my fridge. With no car, we walked down the street and went to see if there was anything I could find to eat at the liquor store. As we walked towards the store, Bailee stops me and points to a building and says, “We need to come here tomorrow.” It was my first day as a full-time dad… I agreed.
The very next day, we got dressed and walked into that building… it was City Church.
We were overwhelmed with all the love and care we received from everyone when we walked in. When service started we started singing and I felt something I had never felt in my life. As Pastor Justin finished his message he explained that, that feeling was God’s presence and that God was calling me home.
I gave my life to Jesus that day.
In just one weekend, my life had been completely flipped upside down.
It’s been a beautiful journey.
When I first got Bailee and we came to City Church, I was struggling so much financially. I noticed that volunteers had some food in the mornings so I remember telling one of the lead team members that I would commit to do whatever they needed from me as long as Bailee could eat breakfast there.
We got breakfast, but what I didn’t expect was that I would get so much more. Serving and doing life with this team has helped me to discover my purpose and to be the father God designed me to be!
A few months after we first came, I was baptized and God has been doing amazing things in our lives every step of the way throughout this journey. Even our financial situation has improved dramatically and now WE are looking for ways to be a blessing to others.
After seeing death, battling addiction, nearly being homeless, and becoming a full-time dad to an 8-year old overnight, I’m now right where God wants me. Living fully alive and making a difference.
– Timothy Field