This God loves Stuart Harvey just exactly who he is.
I don't have to change to be something I'm not.
I just have to listen, and read, and learn who he is.
Hi, I'm Stuart. This is my story.
I just lived a selfish, Stuarty life, hating people, hating the world and living from one Saturday to the next just for my drink, for my football.
That was the only thing in life mattered.
Not family, not friends, not church, not God.
Just my drink and my football every Saturday.
Sunday morning was a bluff morning.
I had to get up, come to church.
I have two young sons.
Well, they were young then, they're big now.
But I had to get up on Sunday morning and make my effort, go to church because I didn't want them to see me, growing up.
Going to church because they were big mimickers of Daddy, and whatever Daddy done, they done.
And I could see that from an early age.
I wanted them to see that Daddy goes to church, we go to church.
And I would sit in the church a lot of Sunday mornings shaking, like literally shaking, panicking, I was gonna faint halfway through the sermon.
With my mask on.
Thinking, please sing the last hymn, please close in prayer early, I gotta get outta here and get air in me and go home and get the fluids into me.
The drinking was getting serious and the football and there was actually one time coming home from a match down south in Dublin, and I was just in a bad way, I'd had a bad weekend, just really drunken.
My family were there, I got them into the stand, and once I got them in I was away to meet the guys, and go on to drink and whatever else we got involved in.
And coming home from that a wee guy asked me, "What are you doing, big lad?You could have been in jail over the night, You could have been killed and what about your wife and those two boys?"
And that just sparked something and I thought, "Lord, how did I get this low?"
That was my lowest point in life.
How did I get there?
And I thought, I really do need to take this God thing seriously and really need to discover who this Jesus really is.
But I felt that I didn't know how and I just-
One day walking in the Mournes, I met a guy from the church and he'd asked me where I was at spiritually.
And I said, look, I'm struggling and I said, I'm watching other people in church and I can see what they have got, but I don't know how to get there.
And I feel I need to spend me and you time with God, but I didn't know what that was about.
So that's when I started a journey with him.
Every fortnight, I was meeting him and we started looking at God is, who Jesus is, who the Holy Spirit is, and how I go about discovering what it means to me.
For me now, I suppose the main thing for me now is that I want to tell everybody else.
I just feel I've discovered something that so many even Christians maybe don't fully understand.
But so many people out there haven't a clue what's going on.
So I've started sharing my faith with the guys from the football that I used to be involved with.
And I became a street pastor which is a big part of my life now.
I'm out in Belfast and Ards and North Down, serving God whether in the parks or in the streets.
Anytime from seven in the evening to two, three in the morning.
From drinking in the streets to now praying with people, sharing with people, and telling them about real joy.