PASTOR JOE DIAZ TESTIMONY
Pastor Joe Diaz was born in Los Angeles, CA. he was one of sixteen kids. Although his parents were always married, his father abandoned them when he was about six years old, so he was raised by his mom in a single parent home, with four sisters and his youngest brother. Later, his stepdad came into the picture, and had two additional sisters. He came from a poor upbringing, moving around quite often. Being evicted, and moving from one house to another. He saw things that a child should not be exposed to, at that very young age. When he was nine years old, he was threatened by a man (dating mom) with a gun to his head, which traumatized him for years. He was abused physically, verbally and emotionally at home, that he could not wait to get out. He soon began hanging out in the streets, looking for acceptance, and he found it with his new family, "the homies". He got involved with gangs, selling, and using drugs. At the age of 18 he became a young father, married young, and soon after had two more kids. His father was very rarely in his life. He would show for a couple of hours and leave for months, and sometimes years. He was never taught how to be a man, how to be a husband, or a good father to his kids. He battled with depression, addiction and demons all his youth, which followed him into adulthood. He had an anger that arose in him which made him a violent man, and hurt many people. He went from selling drugs, to getting high and soon becoming heavily addicted to drugs. He lost everything, all his material possessions, but the most painful was losing his three beautiful kids.
He would hear about Jesus, about salvation, but he could not understand how a God that loved him, could "allow" all the bad things that happened to him, throughout his life. His older sister would constantly share the gospel with him. Christians would tell him about Jesus. But he hated Jesus, because he felt that Jesus wasn't real. He thought Christian people were just a bunch of hypocrites. He knew people who called themselves "Christians" that weren't behaving in godly manners. He would beat up Christians who told him about Jesus. He hated to be told "Jesus loves you" because he didn't feel loved by anyone. He hated everyone that tried sharing the good news of Jesus salvation. He would get verbally or physically abusive, if someone tried to witness to him. Soon after losing his family he became homeless, and began living on "Skid Row" in downtown L.A., where many homeless, and drug addicts live. He lived in the streets for two long years, sleeping in cardboard boxes, on sidewalks, anywhere he could lay his head.
Every time he wanted money to get high, he would rob people. When he was desperate he would go to his mom, who would give him money, only if he went to church. So, he would go to church, just so that he could get money from her. He hated being there, so he would give the ushers a hard time. Then one day, trying to get money, he showed up to church, and they had a guest speaker. That preacher man, was preaching in a way that he understood, and even though at that time, he didn't understand about the Holy Spirit, there was a different feeling inside him. What the preacher was talking about, what those words meant, for the first time he felt conviction. The seed of God's love was planted in his heart. He didn't understand what was going on inside of him, so he left without the money. He thought his family had told that guest preacher all his business. After that day, he was never the same. Something had changed, he no longer felt good getting high. He was not the same person anymore. That preacher’s words kept playing over and over in his mind. Then one day, while sitting in a crack house getting high, he couldn't even feel any high, and he realized he was tired of trying to numb the battle that what was really going on inside him. He broke down crying, and saw the mess he had left behind, he cried out to Jesus, asked him into his heart. Told Jesus that if he was real, to save him, and take away the desire to get high. If Jesus would do that for him, he promised he would serve Him to the end. This time it was different, he meant to keep that promise. Not like the other times he'd made that promise in the past, just to stop the affects, of the day after the high. He asked Jesus in his heart, in that crack house that night.
On that same evening in November of 1997, he went to his sister (the Christian) and told her he was ready to go to that program, that she always told him about. But her Pastor wouldn't take him into their Men's Home program, because they didn't trust him at their church. Because of how he would behave in before, and how he would treat the usher's in the past. So, they sent him to a Christian Men's Home Program in Oxnard, CA. Before he could change his mind, she got in her car and drove almost 2 hours that night to take him to Oxnard, CA. He got to the Men's Home, looking like a caveman, he took a long much needed shower, and slept for the 1st time after 2 years in a bed. The next day, lo and behold, who walks into that Men's Home? None other than that guest preacher, who had preached that message that never left him. Talk about destiny and God's perfect plan for us. He was shocked, a little afraid, because in his mind, this preacher man knew about him. But that man welcomed him, and treated him like a son. He pushed him out of his comfort zone. Brother Joe didn't know how to read or write much, since he dropped out of school at a very young age. But his Pastor worked with him, and taught him how to be a man of God, a man of good character, a soldier for Christ. This Pastor treated him like a son. He cared for him, more than his own parents ever did. He taught him about the Word of God, about how to be a man of integrity, a good citizen in the community. His Pastor taught and prepared him to teach and preach the Word of God. Challenged him to go into the prison ministry, and he did. After serving in the mother church for 3 years, being a director in the Men's Home, preaching in the Ministry, he was ready for his next journey. He took notice of a faithful sister in the church, who was also close to the Pastors, and had been serving the Lord for 2 years longer than he. He started praying for her. He prayed for her for months. Then he decided to ask their Pastor if he could court her. But, she wasn't ready and turned him down, she turned him down 2 times. He almost gave up on her. Then one day he heard a Pastor testify of how his wife had turned him down two times, before saying "Yes" on the third time. He got encouraged to not give up, so after more prayer and fasting, he asked again. After the third time, she agreed that she would get to know him. They started getting to know each other by doing a lot of talking over the phone. Then came the dating. After three months of dating, they got engaged. He was able to reconnect with his three beautiful kids, and introduced them to his now fiancé. Almost two years of dating, they were married, in Ventura, CA.
After being married for almost one year, Pastor Joe got promoted to pioneer a church. But just as the devil works, she soon got ill, and they had to put off being launched out, until the following year. The end of January of 2004, they were launched out and headed out to pioneer the church in Roswell, NM. They got to Roswell, NM., February 1, 2004. When they first got here to Roswell, NM they didn't know anyone, but they met a wonderful couple: Brother Fermin (our brother has now gone home to be with our Lord) and Oralia Peña, who were so kind to open their home to two complete strangers. They have been with us since we got here, and God has used them both in a mighty way, to labor alongside Pastor Joe and Alma, in building the Roswell church.
Things have never come easy to Pastor Joe, when they first arrived in Roswell, all doors were closed for them. He tried getting in the prison and jail ministry, as they used to be in California, and were rejected. Everything happens for a reason, and it's all in God's timing. After a few years, being here in Roswell, the Lord's began moving and opening doors for the church. It's not always easy being patient and waiting on God, but He makes no mistakes, and is always on time. Pastor Joe, knows very well that the Lord is always in everything and is always faithful and on time. The reason the Men's Home got started here in Roswell, NM., is because Pastor Joe never forgot how he was raised spiritually by his Pastor, and he always desired to do the same. After nearly two years, the Lord put it in his heart to start a Men's Home. He wanted to raise godly men, men of integrity, just as he was raised spiritually. He wanted to minister and disciple men, just like his Pastor had done with him. So, with the help of the mother church and the ministry, with the help of the church, he opened a Men's Home program, here in Roswell, NM. Now he has a successful Men's Home program. Working with men to rehabilitate themselves, to clean up, and be delivered from alcohol, drugs, substance abuse, mental, and physical abuse. Now, Pastor Joe works together with the courts, with judges, attorneys, with the local mental hospital, and with the community, to help men, become better individuals in society. Men of God, of good character, with integrity, respectable individuals, and good citizens. But he is aware that none of it would be possible or successful without our Lord, and Savior Jesus Christ. Pastoring the Roswell church and mentoring the Men's Home, is not about Pastor Joe, it is about saving souls. It is about reaching the lost at any cost. And all the glory and honor is for the advancement of the Kingdom of God. Jesus saves souls, Pastor is just a shepherd who makes time to work with them.
Pastor Joe would like to thank, first and foremost: our Father, Son & Holy Ghost, without Him this would all be meaningless. He would like to thank: our mother church, sister churches, Roswell church. Thank you, to all the NM, and CA court system: The Judges, Lawyers, the D.A., all the Peace Officers (R.P.D., Sherriff's Dpt.), Probation Officers, Hospitals, Churches, brother's & sister's in Christ, who have helped in any way, and have put their trust in him, and in the program, to help all the men that have passed through, and those that have stayed with us. Thank you, for taking the time to read his testimony. God bless You!
In His Service
*side note: As much as we wanted to give credit to our Senior Pastor for being such a great honorable man of God, such a great testimony, a blessing to both Pastor Joe and Alma. We love both our mama Pastor's because they took a lot of time, patience, hours of counseling, friendship, fellowship and teaching us, all we know. We will always remember and appreciate them for that. Because our Senior Pastor's are very modest, and out of respect to them, we did not mention their names on this site. But everyone who knows us, and knows them, know exactly what we mean, and who they are. We love you Pastors!!!