I was not born into a Christian home. When I was younger, I was physically, sexually and emotionally abused. I was molested by my uncle at the age of four but never told anyone until I was put into the system due to feeling as though there was nothing wrong with it. Both my parents were drug addicts so when they were not getting their fill on the drugs, they would take it out on me and my younger siblings by abusing us, telling us that we would never amount to anything in life and all sorts of other negative comments.
I was beat, often to the point of broken bones and sometimes bleeding. I am the oldest of seven children, so I was often left to fend for myself and younger siblings. I become the mother of my siblings. When I started Kindergarten, I would go to school bruised and tired. My teacher finally caught on that I was being abused and reported it.
I was taken to Orangewood where I started to hear about God. I began to realize that God loves me. I did not fully understand what love was because I was never loved in the way I should have. I went to live with my great-aunt where I heard more about God’s love. I started questioning God with questions of
“Why me?”, “If he loved me than why did he allow me to be abused?”, “Where was he when I was going through all this pain?”
Questioning continued and I stayed with my great-aunt until I was hurt again by great-uncle, he raped me and left me hurt, not able to trust anyone. I began to rebel and told God that he needed to stay out of my life. I was placed back into the system and jumped from group home to group home and foster home to foster home. I never seemed happy; I was very angry inside. I began doing drugs and alcohol. I became a drug addict and alcoholic at the age of fourteen.
I thought that would fill the whole inside my heart that I was longing to fill. I never found that happiness in drugs and by the grace of God I was healed from the drugs and alcohol. I had to come to the realization that there was something far better than how I was living.
I came to camp earlier but never liked it. I remember coming back on summer and it was just different. I began to have a different perspective about God. I saw happiness in people that I so badly wanted. I came back to camp the following summer and accepted God. I was slowly being transformed into a young woman of God. The once hardened heart began to soften. I began to see why the bad things happen.
Romans 8:28 talks about how God turns all bad incidents that happened for the good. God is not working to make us happy, but to fulfill His purpose which is to bring us life. So, although I endured a lot of pain and suffering. I became closer to God and am so excited to see how God is going to use me. I was able to open up a little more and connect with people in such a way that was different. I began to forgive the people who hurt me.
My foster mom and dad have this saying…
“Whenever God closes a door, He opens a Window”.
I use this when things seem bleak in life. One thing that I still struggle with is pride, and I know that God is faithful in all He does. Proverbs 3:5-6 says,
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding, in ALL ways acknowledge Him and He will give you the desires of your heart.”