GROWING UP IN EAST LOS ANGELES, as a young boy I had many hopes and expectations of my father to teach me how to be a man. My attempts at all of this and more usually ended in acts of physical, verbal and emotional abuse. Nothing was ever good enough to earn his approval or praise. His destructive criticism and humiliation left me with the feeling that I had no value. Needless to say, I feared my father. I wanted my father to love and affirm me, but after fifteen years of abuse and neglect, I left home.
Thus began my journey towards wholeness. Without a guide I got lost again and again. Lost in drugs, alcohol and sex to medicate the pain of my childhood. Jesus found me at the age of nineteen at a 7-11 store in Culver City, CA at 3:30 AM.
Throughout my journey with Christ I’ve had to admit many weaknesses to caring and loving others who carried me to Jesus’s feet again and again. Self-hatred, my inability to accept myself as worth loving, shame, pride, and loads of denial had to be confessed and cleansed before I could begin to give comfort to others who had journeyed down the same road I got lost on.
All these years later I now address the issues that I struggled with for so many years. I’ve spoken nationally and internationally on addiction, healing the father wound, masculine strength and initiative, breaking the grip of shame, and other issues that deal with one’s well being.
Some would identify it as my call, I’d like to think of it as my passion. To see Jesus come and take the fractured pieces of our lives and redeem and restore every one of them so we can become the image bearers we were created to be.
DAVID ALVAREZ, FOUNDER + DIRECTOR OF THE HEALING PATH MINISTRIES
Prior to starting The Healing Path Ministries, David was pastor over Healing and Prayer at The River Church Community in San Jose, CA.
David has spoken to large gatherings of hundreds of people as well as intimate gatherings. His heart is for men and women who struggle with a broken aspect of their being. People often come with past hurt and shame or a habitual, destructive, painful addiction(s). The Healing Path helps men and women put aside their addictions, anger, bitterness, and feelings of aloneness. David’s calling is to help people lead the lives that God intended for them to live as His precious sons and daughters.
Whether leading a Healing Path Program, Weekend Retreat, Seminar, Book Group, or as a guest speaker, David leads men and women through the steps toward healing. David asks them to first acknowledge the need for Jesus to heal areas of weakness, brokenness, and self-doubt, and to trust the process of “courageous vulnerability”. This is done in a small group gathering. In these groups (separated by gender) people can share in an emotionally safe environment. Not only does the group leader pray for each person, but others within the group also pray for one another. It’s often very powerful.