A Testimony of Gratitude

Naomi after
While I was incarcerated at the Ellen Halbert Unit in 2015,  I went to a Bible study every day of the week. I took the took Bridges to Life class, and  the love of the volunteers in class gave me hope. I would think to myself, “Wow, these people have families and lives. They are coming out to the unit to love on us. That is incredible!” It changed me.  God has shown me through these Bible studies the true meaning of fellowship and love. In the past, I sought after the wrong things my whole life, but I found God’s love through the TDCJ volunteer/Chaplain services at the Halbert Unit.

After successfully completing the program at the Halbert Unit in 2015, I have been employed and have had two promotions. I attend church several days a week and help lead Celebrate Recovery. I am also a TDCJ volunteer at the Halbert Unit with Celebrate Recovery and Bridges to Life, and do monthly prison ministry with my church, Christian Life Austin.

My recovery journey is progress, not perfection, and I work it joyfully every day.


Still Walking with God

Dm testimony photo part 2
I was at Ellen Halbert last year and attended a Breaking Free class. I would like to say thank you. You made a difference in my life and I am still walking with God. When I came home, they found a tumor in my head the size of a softball. The doctors gave me a small percentage of survival if I had surgery. I remember telling the doctor that my life is in God's hands, not man's. The doctor said it's a miracle I am alive, and all I could say is God is my strength. God has a plan and I am not giving up. I have two daughters graduating, one from college and one from high school. I just wanted to say thank you. The Breaking Free Bible study helped me to see myself as God sees me.


A second chance at life!

Jenna after
I wanted to take this time to tell you how grateful I am to you and the volunteers of Bridges to Life. In the Fall of 2016, I received a priceless gift: to be a student in the Bridges to Life program. I want you to know what an impact this program made in my life. When I made it to Burnet I was in trouble with the law, but was still not willing to take an honest look at how exactly I had come to this place in my life. I thought that I was only hurting myself by lashing out and drinking. I feel like I have been given a second chance at life with all of the tools that I learned in this program. At 30 years old I finally know my true self! I have love and compassion for people, and wholeheartedly turned my life around so that I can have a purposeful life living for God's will. God has restored so many areas of my life and is doing for me what I could not do for myself. My thinking has changed so I consider the ripple effects of my behaviors before I act now. I have been home a little over a year now, and have the life that I always dreamed of.



God has a purpose!

Sherri o
When I was behind those razor wire fences, I felt hopeless, worthless and alone. My life had no meaning. As a four time felon who finally “got it ” at the age of 48, it all began for me in that little dark cell late one night. I know it was stirred up in me from the many seeds that were planted by others that loved enough to share their time & the love of Christ with me. I view life much differently today.  It is of great importance to me to “give back” what was so freely given to me. To let others know that God has a purpose for us all.  That their life matters, that they are valuable. 


After a life of trauma and abuse, I'm so thankful!

2019 02 19 15.13.13
After a life of trauma and abuse I depended on drugs to get me through my day. Over the course of 10 years I sank deeper into a pit of despair and bondage. I had lost all hope I could ever had my life or relationships restored. Although I did not end up in prison, my former life mirrored that of many of the women at the Ellen Halbert Unit. I finally hit rock bottom and moved back to my parents with my 2 children. Over the course of several years I began seeking God with all my heart. Eventually the Holy Spirit led me to volunteer at Ellen Halbert, where I joined Bridges to Life. The process laid out in the book is the exact process the Holy Spirit had taken me through during those hard years at my parent’s house. I know the faith-based classes are vital to the transformation of women. Many of us have never heard of the concepts we learn in these classes. I know they work.  I'm so thankful for my new life. God restored every bit of my life and health.

Thank you Jesus!


Graduates from Bridges to Life Class


Building a place for transformation