Jonathan Bellamy heard John Chadwick's life story.

John Chadwick
John Chadwick

Growing up with no father figure, John Chadwick quickly turned to alcohol to cover his pain and with a temper that surfaced when drunk, he was soon spending long stretches of time in prison. Freshly released from his final sentence and living in a tent on the moors, his life has been remarkably turned around with the help of Walk Ministries. Jonathan Bellamy heard his story.

Jonathan: Dartmoor Prison became a turning point in your life didn't it?

John: Well, Holy Trinity Brompton came in for three days and we went over and we were worshiping and praying.

Jonathan: Had you ever been in the chapel before?

John: I have been a couple of times. A couple of people said to come along, but when this three day thing happened, we went over to it. That is the first time I gave my life to Christ. He asked me and I was ready. I felt the Spirit at work among them and that is when I gave my life.

Jonathan: Had you ever had much experience of God or church growing up?

John: Yes, when I was young I went to Sunday School. My grandfather, before he died, was a Methodist lay preacher. I went to Sunday School and I went to a church school. I knew all about God and Jesus.

Jonathan: Did you believe at that time?

John: I guess that in my heart I have always believed it. It's what I was brought up with, but I just never thought about it. That was the point that I started thinking about it.

Jonathan: So why did you think that was the time for you to give your life to Jesus?

John: I must admit that at the time it was me thinking about me. I didn't want that life anymore. I didn't want to be in and out of prison. I didn't want to be causing upset for my family. I just wanted out of it and I guess I wanted to do some good with my life. I know now that it's all through Jesus. When I came out, I started attending local church and I was talking to the Pastor there and was saying, "I want to do some good" and he turned round to me and said, "It's always filthy rags. It's all in Jesus. Everything will come through Jesus and that was enlightenment for me.

Jonathan: How did becoming a Christian change the way you were in prison?

John: I'd flown through my sentences, but there was always still little things still going on, like a bit of cannabis here and there, so I was not getting involved in that. There would be a little bit of a fiddle here and there, so not getting involved in that. Also going to church on Sundays. I would get people ribbing me for it. I didn't mind that. I didn't have any clever answers to get back with at the time, but I was just so grateful to be going, so it was good.

Jonathan: How did your relationship with God develop once you'd come out of prison?

John: I started learning scripture and trying to walk along that path. Then I met a beautiful woman, a born-again Christian as well.