Fully Alive:
Becoming The Man God Intended

Member Login

  • Follow Vince on Twitter
  • Join Vince on Facebook
  • Vince D'Acchioli on YouTube
  • Vince D'Acchioli on Rumble
  • Vince D'Acchioli on LinkedIn
  • Vince D'Acchioli on Truth Social
  • Vince D'Acchioli on Substack

Dustin’s Story

I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. Luke 15:7

January was another wonderful month of ministry here at On Target.  I am making progress on our new The Man God Intended Devotional/Journey project, continuing to minister to our special group of young men and gearing up for our new TargetPoint Podcasts.

The month also finished up with a trip to Boise, Idaho where I spoke four times for Ten Mile Community Church’smen’s retreat.  Though I have had the privilege of ministering at hundreds of these over the years, each one is so very special and often produce indelible memories.  At the closing of my Saturday morning session dealing with how to establish an intimate relationship with God, I extended a call to any men who wanted to give their heart to Jesus for the first time.

The first of several men to look up at me in agreement was a young man in the front row named Dustin.  I acknowledged those who responded and prayed for them in closing out the morning.  That evening we had an extended time of the men getting up to share some of their stories.  The last man to share was Dustin, a 25-year-old Police Officer.  He stood there silent for what seemed an eternity.

As he began sobbing, a couple of men stood up to comfort him—when he spoke this is the story he told:

I worked for the York County Sheriff’s office located in South Carolina as a Patrol Deputy from 2020 to the end of 2023.

In January of 2023 I was working the night shift from 6pm to 6am. I was in our main office finishing reports from the day’s shift. While sitting in the office I observed a call being generated by dispatch of a burglary in progress. Once I saw that call get generated, I began walking out of the office to have a faster response. After getting into my patrol vehicle, dispatch called me to respond to that burglary. They advised me that there was a male outside of a residence banging on the door. Dispatch also stated that the man was also talking to another person, but that person was not responding.

I arrived at the incident with lights and sirens. When I approached the residence, I observed a male walking toward me. At first glance it appeared that he had a jacket in his hand and tossed it over his shoulder. I exited my vehicle and was about to give the command to get on the ground, but before doing so, I notice that instead of a jacket, he had a small child on his shoulder. Both he and the child were covered in blood. 

At that time, he began pleading with me to save his kid and proceeded to lay his four-year-old child in front of me. I jumped into action and began checking for a pulse. I thought that I had one, so my Sargent and I began doing CPR. After a few minutes we were made aware that EMS was too far out, and the child needed to get to a hospital now.  We picked him up and placed him into the back of my patrol car with two other deputies. After arriving at the hospital, they pronounced him dead. I later learned that the child was only a few days away from his birthday.

This incident has been stuck with me ever since. I sometimes get mental pictures of that night but mostly I can still hear the sounds that were coming from the child while giving CPR.

I can only imagine the incredible emotional hurt and trauma brought about by such an experience on a rookie officer.  Later that evening some of his friends gathered around him and were able to guide him in a time of prayer to totally surrender his life to the Lord.  Just today I had a chance to speak with Dustin and was able to encourage him to go deeper with the Lord and not let this experience fade.

Like so many young men today Dustin came from a broken home.  He never knew his dad and was raised by his mom and had a special relationship with his Grandma who would often take him to church. He met his wife in 2016 and married her in 2020.  Dustin remembers always wanting to be a Christian but not knowing how.  He says he flailed around for a couple of years kind of kicking the tires but never really made a commitment.

I asked him, why now?  He said after listening to the messages and being around a bunch of guys that would just love and encourage him, he felt tremendous peace that allowed him to become more vulnerable and emotionally open.  I ended our call by letting him know how proud I was of him and encouraged him to now take the challenge of becoming the spiritual head of his home.  He said he would.

I am so thankful for our Lord, who through His Holy Spirit, leads people to repentance.  I can only imagine the joy in Heaven around the throne of God for each one who comes.  Dear friends, please know that I am also so grateful for all of you who pray and support our ministry.  Dustin is just one incredible story out of thousands that have been impacted over the years.

I hope his story both blessed and challenged you—these are serious times and we need all hands on deck that we may help usher many more into His glorious Kingdom.