Four years ago and struggling with addictions to sex and drugs, former NBA star Lamar Odom was not in a good place.
“I wanted to be loved, but I could never find love,” Odom wrote in his 2019 memoir, “Darkness to Light.”
In October 2015, Odom overdosed on drugs while partying at a Nevada brothel and fell into a coma, nearly dying in the process.
After waking up, Odom turned his life around, getting clean and cutting the bad things out of his life.
Now, by the grace of God, Odom says he was saved this past weekend at The Word Church in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, which is led by founding pastor R.A. Vernon.
“Nowadays I’m doing the best I can in walking with the Lord,” Odom wrote Tuesday on Instagram, attaching several photos of him raising his hands while standing beside his girlfriend, Sabrina Parr, and Vernon.
“Thanks to Pastor Vernon,” he added, “I got saved at @thewordchurch this weekend.”
“I had to show Jesus my appreciation for keeping me alive!”
Parr responded to his post: “Nothing better than a man of God! Keep pushing through life baby!! God willing I’ll be right here by your side!!!!”
While Vernon acknowledged that Odom is a new believer with much to learn about Christianity, he said patience is key.
“Like anyone else, I was just very glad and overwhelmed with all that he’s been through … that he realized there’s a place in your heart that only God can fill — no championship rings, no woman, no amount of money — only Christ can fill that place that he designed,” Vernon said.
“I think that Lamar has come to that place in his life where he knows what’s lasting and eternal. I’m overjoyed for him.”
“It takes time to become the Christian that I know he wants to be,” Vernon added, “and we’re committed to helping him find a good local church in the city that he’s in and I encouraged him to read the Gospels 20 minutes every day and commit himself to Jesus through prayer.”
Video footage showed the emotional moment when Odom lifted his hands to the heavens and accepted salvation:
“The strength in God, the strength in my family for never giving up on me, that’s who I live for now,” he said in May.
“I lived selfishly for a long time. I’ll be an addict for as long as I live. When you’re sober, you’re present. And when you’re present, you kind of understand the consequences and repercussions of what you do, and therefore I have no will to do any drug that isn’t marijuana. I understand the consequences and repercussions of getting high.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.