The Story Of Bill Greguska…

There is nothing so bad that God can not help you overcome it!

My name is Bill Greguska, my past has been a mixture of a lot of both good and also bad, I know that God has brought me through some difficult times, I tried to break it down into main topics in order for you to follow the message that I am trying to share with you.

I take the responsibility for my problems, yet I give God all the credit for the solutions… I am hoping that what I have written on this page and on the entire website will be some seeds to help you grow and that will encourage you in your life! ~ Bill Greguska

 

 

Sample Of My Life Via Facebook!

Good Adds Up

NeedEncouragement.com

Posted by Bill Greguska on Saturday, July 1, 2017

 

Some Topics God Used to Help to Shape My Life:

Wisdom is learning from God, and also other’s successes and mistakes!

  1. Alcohol and Drugs
  2. Anger
  3. Anxiety
  4. Basketball Testimony
  5. Death
  6. Depression
  7. Elmbrook Church Stuart Briscoe
  8. Jesus Christ
  9. Mental Illness
  10. My Mom Diana Greguska
  11. Pornography
  12. Quitting Smoking
  13. Stress
  14. Sue Sauer

A Special Link for a Little Extra Encouragement

Pictures of Bill Greguska

 

My Personal Testimony Of My Faith In Jesus Christ

By Bill Greguska

God blessed me with good parents!

I first heard of Jesus Christ when I was a young boy of about 7 years old while growing up. My parents took me to church every weekend and even put me in a church school instruct me which was were some of the fundaments of my faith developed. My faith in God was very frustrating to me because I learned about what was good and acceptable, but it was hard for me to live it out in my life.

Then while growing up, the Lord allowed multiple difficulties such as a drug and alcohol problem, homelessness, and problems with the law all to ultimately understand how deep of a need that I had for God through these hard times I got myself into.

There then was a period of time in my life that I got really serious about my faith because God orchestrated that I would end up in long-term drug and alcohol rehabilitation for 2 years, in which I got the help I truly needed. I attended both AA and NA for about 10 years during that time, yet even though it helped me to some degree, I found Elmbrook church which caught my eye through their open basketball program, basketball back then was very important to me, and was the carrot that got me into church again back in 1989 shortly after I got out of long term treatment. The church took me in and helped me to grow as a Christian under the teaching of Stuart Briscoe and the rest of the staff. I even got a job at Elmbrook as a custodian for 4 years. The seeds of faith were planted and my roots were getting deeper by the things I was learning in God’s word over the years. 

As a result of the experiences that God allowed in my life both good and also bad, gave me the awareness of my urgent need for God in my life! The rest of my story is a series of ups and downs, but this time God was in my life directing me, teaching me how to love Him, how to love others, and how to love myself. My born again faith back on June 25, 1986, when I finally gave up drugs and alcohol, gave me a new opportunity to live my life for Jesus Christ. 

My life has not been perfect or even easy and I still sin, but since I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I know my sins are now forgiven. God has blessed me with some key people to help me such as Ron and Sue Sauer, Mark Mallwitz and a few others. I am grateful and find it hard at time to understand how much God loves me.

I know who created me, why I am here on earth, and that I have a purpose for my life which is to love and honor God and to love others because God has loved me first. I have the assurance that He will never leave me or forget about me because He loves me and I love Him and want to serve him out of gratitude for what He has done for me. ~ Bill Greguska

 

Where The Problems Came From?

NeedEncouragement-sign-back-yard

NeedEncouragement.com started because of all the help Pastor Ron and Sue Sauer gave me trying to keep my marriage alive.

Most of the bad situations were because of some extremely bad choices I made concerning alcohol and drugs which I got into when I was a teenager.  Previous to that point, the big part and center of my life became basketball which I got pretty good at, although without a doubt alcohol and drugs got the best of me, it totally ripped my life apart which took many years of recovery to put the pieces back together with God’s help.

Depression and mental illness became factors that I had to deal with. But then as intensely as I got previously got involved with basketball, drugs, and alcohol, later on in my late twenties, I got really involved in my recovery, and trust and faith in Jesus Christ. I have learned that when I jump into something I jump in with both feet.

But I am thankful for two good parents who God blessed me with that loved me and went well beyond what was required of parents. This website is a result of the encouragement that I received from God, my parents, pastors, friend, and family. I just wanted to pay it forward to put this website together out of gratitude for how others have helped me, namely my mom, Sue Sauer, Mark Mallwitz, plus a few other Christian friends. ~ Bill Greguska

 

My School Years Were A Challenge For Me!

Pius XI high school basketball in my sophomore year about age 16 with dreams of basketball in my head!

In grade school, once I got very good at basketball, my mom used basketball as leverage for me to get passing grades and stay out of trouble in school. Realizing that my abilities in basketball helped me with my self-worth,  I got a lot of self-satisfaction and attention from playing. It engulfed my life, and while growing up, it was all I did each summer, year after year, month after month, and literally day after day, and it kept me busy on my teams during the school year, I tried out for varsity my sophomore year at Pius XI, yet coach Joe Bunneta wanted me to play JV in order to get a lot of playing time which I did.

I need to say that school was very challenging for me just to try to sit quietly in class and pay attention. I was not dumb at all, but I did struggle with reading until I was almost in high school.  My silliness and hyperactivity made school something I did not enjoy and I found myself easily distracted, even though I got B’s and C’s school did not come naturally to me. I was very popular due to the fact I was very friendly with a big heart, very humorous and I excelled in basketball. ~ Bill Greguska

 

Death, Depression, and Drugs Hit Hard!

Everything was going relatively well it seemed until my best friend Steve Mader died when I was 16 years old on March 12th, 1976. Before I knew it, I started to smoke marijuana and cigarettes to escape the pain in my life and depression and mental illness got the better of me. I threw a lot of potential out the window in my life due to my addiction to alcohol and drugs and depression. Thoughts of totally giving up on life would not leave me alone and suicide was looking like something I was thinking of doing. When a person thinks about killing themselves it is very hard to go through the motions of life and living with that on your mind.

My parents did not know what to do to help me, I was totally depressed, drinking and using different types of drugs such as marijuana, hash, and even angel dust, cocaine, and acid a number of times not to mention Pam aerosol inhalation. I did not want to live anymore. ~ Bill Greguska

 

The Hospital Did Not Help At All…

My mom watched over me well the beginning of my life, and I was fortunate to be able to take care of her the last 8 years of her life!

On April 1, 1976, I was 16 years old and I was admitted to St. Mary’s Hill hospital which did not help at all, it only made me angrier. For 9 months they gave me pills and had to shot me up with tranquilizers since I was extremely strong and athletic, but even the Thorazine did not help. That definitely was a waste of time. I was also in Depaul Hospital and Dewey Hospitals and County Hospital but nothing really changed me or my life until I go into long-term treatment at WMHI combined with Elmbrook church shortly afterward. ~ Bill Greguska

 

 

WMHI and Mental Health And Elmbrook Church 

It was not until I was 26 years old on June 25, 1986, when I was in long term treatment for drugs and alcohol and mental illness at WMHI that I really got the help and understanding that I needed. It was a blessing to get away from Milwaukee where I knew where all the places to get high were. After I got out of treatment 2 years later, I got involved with NA and AA for a little while longer until I got involved in Elmbrook Church. Pastor Stuart Briscoe taught me each Sunday and Stuarts teaching were the seeds I needed to add to the help I got from WMHI. Elmbrook helped me to get my feet on level ground through God’s word, prayer, fellowship, Bible study. I even worked on staff as a maintenance and custodial man for four years under Chuck Weathers who was very patient with me! 

My life was on a roller coaster from the time I was about 16 years old until I got long-term treatment in 1986. By the time I was 28 years old after participating in long-term drug and alcohol treatment, I began to learn that I needed was to discover what God wanted me to consider most important, not what I thought to be so important when I was living only to please myself, not Him. ~ Bill Greguska

 

Quit Smoking Cigarettes And Drinking And Drugs!

Bill-Greguska-Basketball

At age 45 with a vision of encouraging others with the Encouragement ministry.

I thank God that He helped me quit drinking alcohol and using drugs on June 25th, 1986 also helped me quit smoking cigarettes January 10th, 1988. He also opened up a personal relationship with me. My choices did a lot of damage to my life and affected my family and friends, yet I believe Satan meant for harm, God meant for good, but the way God has used my life to encourage others. What the locusts ate away, God has replenished. Thank God for that!!!

It is very strange how we can have our priorities messed up sometimes, but God is faithful if we only would trust in Him. By the way, I still enjoy watching basketball on TV or shooting hoops once in a while at the park, but it is no longer a god to me! I am thankful for what basketball taught me about not giving up, but instead creating a new standard!

I thank God I got out of the driver’s seat when I was 26 years old when Jesus Christ both shook up my life and at the same time, started me on a journey of being born again and living my life for the Lord instead of for myself. If you sense that your life might need some help like I did, do not wait another minute, please call 1-800-633-3446 today! ~ Bill Greguska

 

I Live Who I Believe I Am – Pete Briscoe

 

To the best of my ability, I have learned from the past. I live in the present and I have hope for the future, and I strive to look at the glass half full instead of half empty. Pete Maravich’s story is inspirational to me!~ Bill Greguska

2 Corinthians 5:17  Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!

 

God Helped Me Quit Drugs / Alcohol On June 25, 1986. 

Encouragement Ministry Sign

My back yard sign at my house many years ago. 

I have stayed clean and sober over 30 years. Before that, I went in and out of treatment many times, yet I always seemed to end up right back at the places where I knew the drugs and alcohol were. It was not until I went to the last treatment center that I got the help and encouragement I needed. So many people, like myself, did not know how to stop drinking or using drugs or how to deal with the physical addictions to drugs or alcohol.

I am so very thankful that I quit using drugs – and the same can happen for you. Also, thank God that He could even help me quit smoking cigarettes. The drugs and alcohol were creating more obvious problems with my behaviors, but the cigarettes were slowly killing me from the inside out. I pray that you too can get help like I did because living with an addiction is not easy and will not get better without help from God and others who are willing and able to help. In our society, there are many pressures and temptations. ~ Bill Greguska

 

Many Temptations Come Up Against Us!

A temptation that all men including myself have in common is in the area of sexuality, namely pornography which is referred to in the Bible in Matthew 5:28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Lust and sexual immorality have gotten even worse and worse in our country since the Internet came into being. I wish I could say that I never viewed pornography ever in my life, but as a Christian, I strive to honor God in all areas of my life and yes it can be difficult at times but it is the only way to live. If you have not gotten right with God, consider today the day to start!

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.

Satan and our own flesh tempt us in many areas of life such as alcohol and drug abuse, gambling, overeating, pornography, anger, depression, anxiety, fear, plus many other ways that Satan uses to tempt us. lie to us, steal from us and attempt to kill us because of his hatred towards God for kicking him out of heaven. Satan will us anything and everything to tear us down to get back at God because Satan knows God loves us and that is Satans way of getting back at God!   ~ Bill Greguska

 

I’m No Different Than You, Even If My Story Is?

Trust in God, not in yourself!

I just happened to have gone through my share of hard times because of some fault of my own and just the way things turned out. But God has been faithful to me each step of the way and that God has blessed me even though I did not deserve it. (by His grace and mercy)

I have my issues that I deal with for which I need encouragement from time to time like anyone of us. What I can say that God has helped me through many in my life.  When you focus on your problem or obstacle, the problem increases.

When we concentrate on having trust in God, He points us to the solutions that we need.  ~ Bill Greguska

 

The Old Is Gone, The New Is Here!

Too Many Things Were More Important To Me Than God:

  1. Basketball
  2. Drugs
  3. Alcohol
  4. And Life I Once Lived. 

 

Lew Alcindor Was My 1st Role Model In Basketball!

I Was No Michael Jordan, But I’d Love To Play Like Him!

 

Some Great Advice To You?

I enjoyed being the best dad that I could be! My motto for raising my 2 kids was to be “Firm, Fair, and Fun”

  • Let your faith lift you up when life knocks you down, having trust in God helps you to laugh instead of cry. Your trust and confidence in Him (instead of your ability) will help you find lasting peace. When you give up trying to live on your own (and begin trusting God), that is when you begin to grow. 
  • Then when you practice forgiving others when you speak positive words of truth to both yourself and others, and when you love one another the way God has instructed you to do, you will experience peace.
  • I think that it would be safe to say that if God is willing to help me, then I am sure He is more than prepared to do the same or more for you, no matter what your situation, as long as you let Him know you need help and encouragement. 
  • I have personally experienced God’s help many, many times throughout my life. Because of all God has done in my life, having faith in Him is a very normal and a natural thing for me. Make today the day that you will begin to look at life through a new set of eyes. 
  • If there is a problem or sin that is bothering your conscience, then it’s best to try to attempt to make things right. Reach out for the help you need. God has a plan for you. Your job is to find out what that plan is and to follow it the best you possibly can. Jeremiah 29:11-13

 

God Can Help You Too As He Has Helped Me!

Bill High school basketball

My high school basketball picture Gary Hass drew of me. ~ Bill Greguska

If you want to win in the game of life, let the coach call the shots. God loves us all and has a plan for each of our lives – we just need to either follow him or choose to do our own thing and suffer because of it like I did. No matter what your weaknesses or strengths are, without God, we are ultimately lost like sheep who have gone astray, like I was for so many years.

God Gave Me A Good Sense of Humor!

I thank God for the sense of humor that he blessed me with. I grew up as a class clown/basketball player, which somehow worked for my benefit for the most part. My mom insisted that if I wanted to play on the basketball team, then I needed to buckle down and keep my sense of humor in check. It became a real motivating factor in my life. (Except when I was depressed), I always seemed to have a smile on my face and a chuckle in my heart. People appeared to gravitate towards me because I was humorous. Below is a video that I found that describes how I learned on my own how to be so-called funny.  ~ Bill Greguska

 

Please contact us if you have any questions or comments or would just like some encouragement?

 

Thank God that He gave me a good sense of humor. My mom always told me that if you don’t laugh about things in life, you will end up crying about them. ~ Diana Greguska

  • Click here to experience a little taste of my sense of humor

  • “It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up.” Vince Lombardi

  • How does Alcoholics Anonymous compare with the Bible?

 

Talk To Someone Right Away, Call 1-800-633-3446

With encouragement from Ron and Sue Sauer in the winter of 2005, I started NeedEncouragement.com because of all the help they gave me, and that I wanted to pay it forward to others going through difficult times of their own.

  1. Billy Graham
  2. Bill’s Basketball Testimony
  3. Francis Chan
  4. Mark Mallwitz
  5. Brian Larson
  6. John Wegner
  7. Ray Jablonski
  8. Ron West
  9. Lora Kesselhon
  10. Mike Hayden
  11. Sue Sauer
  12. Terri Mitchell