From Gang Leader To Kingdom Builder

No One is Hopeless

No one is hopeless.  There are some people that society labels as hopeless. Yet, no one is hopeless to God.

A guest on a recent podcast proved that. John Turnipseed talked to LifeSupport host Paul Johnson about his incredible story of redemption and transformation. Mr. Turnipseed is now using his horrible past to further the kingdom of God.

John Turnipseed

John’s family moved from Alabama to Minnesota when he was young because his father was seeking opportunities for work and to be closer to relatives.

Things went bad for John soon after the move. His father began drinking heavily and became very violent at home. John didn’t have a healthy father figure in his life, and he fell into the drug and gang life. By the time John was 16 years-old, he had his first child. By 18, he had been locked up four times.

As John got older, he spent more time in prison, gangs, drugs and even became a pimp. He had lost his conscience entirely. During his life, a man in his neighborhood, named Art would continue to try to befriend John, but John had no interest.

After a long stint in prison, John was released from prison and began to pursue his GED. John ended up going to technical school where he became a computer programmer and eventually taught a class. However, his old ways came back, and he tried stealing a bunch of computer parts from the school.

He got caught and this time it looked like he was going to be put away for a very long time. He was indicted on 50 felonies. Miraculously he was given no jail time. It turned out that Art, the same man who kept pursuing John was also a friend of the judge and convinced him to give John another second chance.

Art was there again to support John and this time John turned his life around. He asked God to take control of his life. The change was immediate and profound.

God Never Gives up on the Lost

John’s mentor, Art never gave up on him, even when John told him to leave him alone. Art knew that John was an influencer in his community.  If he could reach John, he could reach many others in need of God, and that’s exactly what happened. Turnipseed served as the Director of the Urban Ventures Center for Fathering in Minneapolis, and he has helped countless men find a new life outside of crime and violence. John’s story is the centerpiece for our Lifeblood curriculum designed to help men and women understand who they are in God’s eyes, and find a path to new life following incarceration.

Meet John and Hear More of his Story

We’ll be sharing the story of how John’s life transformation sparked the idea for Five Stone Media during our upcoming StoryRising event.  We’d love  to have you join us on February 24, 2022 for this evening of music with Sara Groves and Eagle Brook Music as we celebrate what God has done through our ministry.


We created to help you start discussions about mental health, to help remove stigma so people can find hope and healing through God. We pray that LifeSupport helps you grow your church.
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