The first time, the voice that spoke into his life was one you might have seen coming. It was brave words from his mom that first shook Robby Gallaty from the spiral of substance abuse that had taken him from a life of seemingly unstoppable business success to living without heat, water & electricity. The words that brought him home, and eventually led to an extraordinary conversion to Christ.
But the second time – after he’d fallen back into addiction while still preaching Christ to all who would listen – it was a voice you might not see coming. A voice that delivered a message that would shake him to his core.
“Every day I’m driving to meet the drug dealer in the projects I was buying from, and I would drive every morning at 11 to the daiquiri shop. And I’m sharing Christ with the girl who’s working behind the counter as a bartender! And I go through the drive through, and say, ‘I’d like the strongest drink you have, and, oh – by the way – did you know Jesus rose from the dead, and died for you?’ And I would preach to her as I was getting drinks on the way to go get high!”
But an unforgettable comment was about to reach through it all and stop him in his tracks.
“This went on for about a month. This is a girl who is an atheist, far from God. A pot smoker who’s never been to church in her life. But she had enough sense to know something wasn’t right. She leans out the window, and she says, ‘Robby – for someone who knows so much about Jesus, you sure don’t act like it.'”
“That was the shot across the bow of my life, when God just stopped me in my tracks. And in the process of sharing Christ with this girl who became a believer, God brought me back to Himself, but here’s a cool story about God. She married my friend Casey, and Christie and Casey have now gotten married and they went to Miami to plant a church! So God is so good in how He’s used it. He really brought me back to Him, and it showed me a valuable lesson. Nobody is immune from the effects of sin. So we all need healthy balance & reasonable parameters in our lives lest we all fall, if not for the grace of God.”
Robby Gallaty is the senior pastor of Long Hollow Baptist Church in Hendersonville, TN. He authors the freshly-released book Recovered: How an Accident, Alcohol, and Addiction Led Me to God.On the Road with Robby Gallaty