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home : opinion : opinion November 21, 2017

9/10/2017 12:01:00 AM
Brandon Johnson's Life Change

Paulette Ballard
Guest Columnist


Growing up in Atlanta, Ga. and moving to Huntersville, N.C. was one of the greatest experiences of my entire life.

My mom was a single mom, raising three     children with me being the middle child. We grew up very poor and life handed our family more than its fair share of difficulties. My mother did the very best she could and worked multiple jobs. She had a stern hand trying to keep all three of us in line. However, I strayed a bit and began making some poor decisions during my teenage years.

By the time I was 17, I was experimenting heavily with an array of different drugs, involved in some very risky business and behavior, and was on the verge of dropping out of high school. I will spare you many of the horror stories that involved violent murders within the family, alcohol related downfalls, and the inside of two different county jails. I became hopeless and found myself at rock bottom and deep in depression. Then something happened.



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On February 19, 1998, at age 17, I decided to move to Huntersville, N.C. My father, who was still almost a stranger to me, asked me to live with him. I learned very soon that his home was one that was Christ centered. While living with him I began my relationship with Jesus Christ. I gave my life to him and began my walk with the Lord.

This was, is, and will always be the greatest thing that has ever happened to me. My whole life changed for the better and everything I touched turned to gold. It was miraculous. The Lord shook me in such a way that I wept for months on end. He was healing me. And this was something completely outside of this worldly realm. It was amazing. He restored my heart, my mind, my family and he restored my entire life. Having faith in Christ was never about the religious traditions we’ve all been taught while growing up, it’s truly about having a real, and close personal relationship with our God who truly loves us more than we love ourselves.

From that point on I graduated from North Mecklenburg High school on time, received scholarships which paid for much of my college, received my business degree from Central Piedmont Community College (where I was their Student Body President). A year later I was elected as the N4CSGA President, which is the governing body over all community colleges in the state of NC and I also sat on a state board with former Governor Beverly Perdue where I was recognized as the leader of 800,000 students across our great state.

All the glory for these accomplishments goes to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is through Him and by him that I was able to see these victories in my life and these are moments I will never forget.

Amazing Grace…how sweet the sound…that saved a wretch like me.

Today I am a very active, healthy, happy, and blessed 31-year-old business owner. As I write this story my heart is churned as I look back to where I was then and where I am now. None of this would have been possible without God’s grace on my life. Still to this very day, I have learned to completely depend on him in every area of my life. That folks is the one and only real truth.




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