April – 2014 Graduate
Growing up, I was uprooted from my home because of divorce and thrown into a world of disorder and alcoholism. I became so angry at my family situation that I acted out to be noticed. My attention-seeking only backfired, leaving me feeling more rejected than before. Adding to my pain, the schools in our town combined that year, and many of my friends left me. I got involved with some kids who were into the party scene, but then I found my home in the church. However, I always felt like my efforts were pass or fail. I tried to use my works to gain acceptance from God and people. After I graduated from high school, my mom attempted suicide. My world began to spin out of control. My brother got involved with drugs soon after that, adding to the chaos of my life. When my dad told me that he too had considered suicide, my ultimate fear was confirmed. It seemed like everything I had ever hoped to be constant in my life simply wasn’t. Desperate to have control over the one thing I could—my body—I developed an eating disorder. The more I worked out, abused laxatives, and restricted food, the more in control I felt.
A pastor gave me the Mercy book Starved when she found out about my eating disorder, and I decided to apply to the Mercy program. I was tired of life and striving to be what I thought a Christian looked like. I felt so defeated and hopeless.
A huge turning point for me at Mercy was when I started to understand the difference between God’s truth and Satan’s lies. The voice in my head telling me that I had to control everything was never from the Lord.
While at Mercy, I learned that God is not the hard taskmaster I thought of Him as but a God who desires me and wants to be desired. He brought me to Mercy to save that which was already His. He’s helped me break away from performance-based thinking. I have learned how to open my heart up to community. The enemy can’t tell me who I am or am not anymore, because I am sealed with God’s spirit.
After graduation, I want to volunteer in homeless shelters and hospitals. One day, I hope to go back to school to pursue a business degree. I also hope to get married in the future.
To all of Mercy’s supporters, thank you, thank you, thank you! Thanks to your donations, I now know that there is more to life. I can dream again and can have a hope and a future. I no longer live in fear. I will now experience joy even during hard times. Thank you!