Shortly after I was born, my twin brother and I were placed into foster care. We were in many different foster homes until we were adopted three years later. The first year of living with our family was relatively normal, but then things began to change. When I was four, I started experiencing physical, sexual, verbal, and emotional abuse. Every day I wondered if I would make it to the next. I was hurting, broken, and confused. We went to church every Sunday, but to me it was just a place where all the hypocrites of the world gathered to keep a clean reputation. I hated God, I hated church, and I wanted nothing to do with any of it. When I was nine, I began to struggle with different eating disorders. A couple years later, I began to have suicidal thoughts. I was depressed and hopeless. But God continued to pursue me.

In July of 2017 I was presented with the Gospel in a way that I had never heard before. I was told that it’s about a relationship; God isn’t distant or cracking a whip, but He is holding out His hand waiting for our embrace. It’s not about what I’ve done, but it’s all about the work of the Righteous One. Not because of how I behaved, but by grace through faith I am saved. All of this gave me a new hope.

The next year I began college and was connected to a local church and an amazing small group. The church became like a family – loving, correcting, and guiding me. It was through community that the roots of my trauma became exposed. In 2020 I was connected with an amazing counselor, and that’s when my healing journey began. It wasn’t easy, but eventually my counselor told me about Mercy.

At Mercy, I had encounters with the Holy Spirit like never before. I’ve learned to use the authority that I have in Christ, and I have become confident in who I am because of who He says I am. The hope that I have invites change, causes growth, and restores joy. And hope does not let the story end, but it keeps my story moving forward.  And that’s what I’ll keep doing. As I keep moving forward, I plan to teach others about the power of truth.

To the donors, thank you so much for your support! I would never be where I am right now if it wasn’t for Mercy and the Holy Spirit. Mercy helped me connect with the Holy Spirit in new ways and because of that my life has been truly transformed.