I was three when my parents separated. My dad was not active in my life and I didn’t see him but every once in a while.
I was 9 when my mom met a guy. He was over our house one day and I remember asking him if he would be my dad. I was 10 years old and he took me to his barracks. I don’t remember what season it was but it had to be around Christmas or my birthday because he had presents and said I could pick one and have it early. I don’t remember what I picked.
I do remember I had to use the bathroom. I was in the bathroom and he asked if he could come in. I said, “yes.” I thought maybe he needed something or to get something. That day I got sexually abused. A grown man took my virginity at age 10. This happened for 6 years before I said something to a friend. Who had an uncle who was a detective.
It wasn’t long before the child protective services and a detective were looking for me. We went to court and he did serve time. I became depressed, I could literally see myself in a tub filled with blood. I couldn’t get all the ugly images out of my head and I knew I needed something. I took some pills, not enough to die- I took 13 Ibuprofens. My mom took me to the hospital and they gave me liquid charcoal.
After realizing the pills were out of my system they started talking to us about a psychiatric center. I was at the Psychiatric center and it didn’t take long for me to realize that if I said the right things and did the right things, I wouldn’t stay in there long and then I could end my life. I received an eight hour pass and my mom insisted on taking me to church.
During this time in my life I was wondering what kind of God would allow his child to be hurt that way and I did not want to be at a church. That day they had a special guest. They had a pottery wheel in the front of the church. They started with a lump of clay – they started to build it and I watched it collapse, they poured red paint on it and described every negative feeling I was feeling that day. They began to mold it into this piece of art work and said that God takes all the ugly and makes it into something beautiful (not a quote but thats what I got out of it). I was already sobbing and asking God to take my pain.
After service the lady who was up front knew she was there for me and we talked. That day God gave me hope and I no longer wanted to die. But being young and going through years of hurt it wasn’t long before I turned away from church and at that time I had no clue how much the devil will do what it takes to steal your soul.
I went down a path of drugs and alcohol. I wanted anything and everything to feel numb. I took all kinds of drugs; special K, cocaine, meth, marijuana and alcohol. The only thing I didn’t take was crack and heroine. One day I got fed up with the party scene and stopped having parties.
Then I met my husband, at the time we were just dating. I remember one day feeling my soul fighting and dwelling on one scripture…I didn’t even know where it was in the Bible or when I heard it but I kept hearing if you are lukewarm I will spit you out like vomit. (now I know that was the devil) I didn’t want that so I literally told the devil he could have my soul, not knowing the power of God.
2002 I pass out at a bank and find out I am pregnant. January 27, 2003 my son is born. November 15, 2003 his father and I get married. May of 2004 my mom begins to talk to me about a retreat… a women’s spiritual retreat. I started making excuses why I couldn’t come and planned on not going. Then my mom said,
“Your ticket is paid for!”
I felt obligated to go, so I went. The theme was Paths of Prayers. I felt so happy there… at peace, like I was on a high. During this time my son was a little over a year old; he wasn’t talking, lacked eye contacted and was aggressive. He started going through testing for autism. Returning back from the retreat I started to read more and pray but I didn’t live in prayer. I prayed when I needed God but not in a real relationship with him.
One day while praying I heard something tell me I was going to turn my back on God and of course at the time I couldn’t see it. Now I know it was a warning from God. At this time I was Children’s Coordinator at church, started praying with my son boldly in front of his therapists. I started a disciple class. I listened to Christian music and was happily active. And my son, who could have been mute… he was talking and giving hugs. I had a lot to be thankful for and I had a lot to share the Glory God gave me but I had an overwhelming since of loneliness.
I don’t even remember how it started but I got on a website and entered chat rooms, began to have conversations with strangers, I allowed their word to fill that lonely feeling. Then one day I met someone and he asked to see me, I said yes. Once again not realizing how the devil wants to steal your soul. I turned my back on God, my church and my husband. Not only that but my husband who struggles with God, and I prayed while I was active in church for his salvation…
I showed him the ungodly. I didn’t show him the wife that God created to love him. I wasn’t just crippling my faith but his also. I cheated on my husband, not only did I cheat but at times I lied and said I was at church when I went and laid down with the darkness. I lived in darkness while pretending to be in the light. I showed my body, my temple to strangers. I had zero respect for God, my husband, my kids or myself. I justified my sins and was somehow able to smile in front of everybody… living a double life.
Oh, that devil thinks he is good. Let me tell you there is a devil, there is a side of this world that wants to see you fail. That wants me to believe God allowed bad things to happen to me, that wants to believe my husband doesn’t love me and God won’t save me now. The devil almost won! He almost got my soul, he almost used me to destroy my marriage. My marriage literally broken up… feeling lost and dissatisfied with my actions. I began to pray for my marriage.
I started attending church AGAIN. I started listening to Klove (a Christian radio station). I remember hearing a song that seemed to come on a lot while I was in the car… it said, I am not alone, you will go before me, you will never leave me. That song I could not get out of my head. I knew that God was with me, he just needed me to call on him. I prayed for my husband and I to have soft hearts, to find a way back to each other.
At this time I realized I had no clue what it felt like to have real love, the things in my past has caused me to look the wrong places for security, for attention and to fill me with a false feeling of love. I received a text from my husband a few weeks later, he wanted to work things out and he wanted to forgive me. At this point its 2015 and God has saved my life more than once, helped my son become mainstream with his condition and soften my husbands and my heart towards each other. One day falling for temptation again, I saw the pain it caused my husband, the pain I have given him and the real true love he has for me. God truly saved our marriage and protected me from temptation.
Now the devil was attacking me a different way… temptation didn’t work but I became depressed. I had no drive to want to go to church. I had no drive to want to get dressed. My mom still refusing to give up on me, gave me a book called Fervent and I finally learned how much the devil is active and I’ve been fighting the wrong battles. I felt angry, angry I allowed the devil in my life… in my marriage. Still being stubborn and wanting to ignore my anger, I stopped reading.
Then my mom asked if I would join her Bible study group. I made some more excuses but her being persistent, she kept asking and hunted me down even when I dodged her calls. Finally I said yes and not wanting to show up to the study with empty pages in my book… I began to read, to read scripture and the Armor of God study. Day 1 of the study was hard. In a circle we had to write the name of the most difficult person or most overwhelming circumstance I was facing. I had nothing to put but MYSELF.
After reading and doing the study I felt the need to attend church again. The devil almost took me down a path of depression. Screaming for help but telling myself I’m not worthy. The devil telling me I’m not worthy. I’m not worthy of God’s love, I’m not worthy of God’s passion. IM NOT WORTHY! Let me tell you God says I AM WORTHY!!!! Feeling all of this depression and unworthiness I kept going to church.
One day during service, praying and worshipping begging God to fill me up, to set my heart on fire and please allow me to feel you Lord Jesus! I felt him, I felt GOD. I felt the Holy Spirit. I felt his love and his compassion. You know how I knew? Every hair on my body felt like it was standing up, I had a tingle sensation run over my body… the feeling my heart had is hard to explain, like a non hurtful burn… a glowing in my heart.
You see God does love me and all the things I went through when I was younger, he was there holding me. After service that day I went home, looked up scripture and read about the Holy Spirit. Not sure what to do with the feeling I was receiving. My emotional scale from a 1-10 was definitely a 10. I was crying everywhere not because I felt sad but because he loves me so much. He stirred my heart up. No matter what path I went down, no matter how much my sins disappointed him. HE loves me and don’t you dare say you’re not worthy! I am worthy of his love, compassion, GRACE and peace. After pouring out my repentance God showed me just how much he loves me. I am child of God and he loves me, not just a love but a deep heart felt love… love like nothing I ever felt.
You see I have always had a father who loved me, who protected me. I just didn’t see it, I was blind. My father, the creator of this earth, never let go of me. HE cares about his child so much… HE refused to let the devil have my soul.
I’m so grateful for his love, for him working through my mom and not giving up on me, and to be part of a church that feeds my soul. Yes, I’m new to this new feeling, it has been a little over a month that I have been living in God, in his Spirit. And I have been upset, frustrated… my flesh will react in an ungodly way but God is planting my tree and giving me roots so when the storms come, I will not be shaken! Every morning I have time with God and I can finally say that and not be fake about it.
On days my body is asleep, I hear a voice that says follow me and I jump up and realize it my quiet time with God, 5:30-6:00 in the morning while my whole household is asleep I read and pray. Its not anything I have done… It is God… God gave me passion for him. All of my glory goes to God. He is here to give us peace and allow us to feel his love and for the first time in my life IM at peace because of the Grace of God.