Samantha – 2018 Graduate
I grew up in a Christian home, but I felt like I always had to meet a certain set of standards. When I was six years old, abuse entered into my life. This left me as a terrified little girl feeling abandoned, dirty and confused. During my school years I dealt with some racial bullying. I felt like I had to earn my way to be loved. I started watching pornography and having sexual relationships online and in person. At 16, I was sexually abused by a guy, which led me down an even darker spiral of depression. During my high school years, I was hospitalized six times for suicidal thoughts and attempts. I was an empty shell of a person. I felt like the world would be better without me in it. I was hopeless. Mercy was my last resort.
I heard about Mercy from a family friend whose sister had gone through the program. I decided to apply because the path I was going down was death, and in my heart I knew I wanted life. Upon arriving I was a mess, and I tried to leave within 24 hours. I cried all the time and was a very manipulative and broken person. A turning point happened when I talked to the Program Director. She told me life was hard but I had to make a decision to live it and fight for it. No one could do it for me. Tough love was what pushed me to decide to fight and stay.
During my time at Mercy God showed me redemption, grace and forgiveness. He showed me how to love myself and how to fight alongside Jesus. He showed how to be content in Him no matter what the circumstances. God became my mercy.
After Mercy, I hope to eventually go to college and become a language interpreter, also teaching English as a second language. In the meantime, I hope to get a job but also continue to really focus on where God wants me and becoming even more like him.
Thank you to Mercy’s donors and supporters for helping girls like me find Jesus and a newfound freedom. Because of your acts of obedience, I have found that, too.