When I was five years old, I was molested by a trusted family friend from our church. I began to believe lies about myself. “You are worthless. No one is going to love you now. You’re damaged goods, broken.” And I believed that it was all God’s fault. From that point on, I cut myself off from God. I had a void in my life and became determined to fill this void. I would give myself to guys sexually, expecting them to give me love in return; a love that would make me whole and take all my pain away. Little did I know, I was only making things worse. I had no respect for my body. I hated myself and would punish myself for my actions. I told myself it was what I deserved, but on the inside, I was screaming for help and for someone to take care of me.
I started drinking in high school and eventually felt like I needed alcohol to be happy. I would blame my actions on being drunk and pretend to move on, suppressing how I really felt about my behavior. I would go through times where I would try to get my act together, but every time I would relapse, and it would be worse than before. Finally, in August 2010 I hit my all time low and felt completely helpless. I heard about Mercy from my sister-in-law and decided to apply.
While at Mercy, Jesus answered many of my questions. God showed me that all these years, I had been deceived. He showed me that I’m not dirty; I’m pure because of Him. I’m not junk, but loved! I can turn to Him and have Him bear the pain. Jesus took the abuse, the shame, the guilt and the filth in my place, and that is true love. I fully surrendered myself to Christ and I am no longer my own. Thank you so much to everyone at Mercy for giving me the opportunity to meet God face to face and for letting me share that with others.
I want to encourage other young women who struggle with life-controlling issues. Mercy isn’t about learning how to cope with life so you don’t have to deal with pain anymore. It is an opportunity for you to take some real time to get to know the God who truly loves you and is the answer to all of your problems.