“After all I’ve been through—abuse, drugs, prison... I could never have imagined the life I have today... To me, the gospel is... God’s rescue plan for my life.”
Growing up in a family torn apart by alcohol abuse, I had never really experienced what it felt like to be loved...
So at 18, when I met my ex-husband, I was completely devoted to him. At the start, he seemed like my dream guy. He made me feel loved and cherished...
I thought what we had was special and that it would last forever...
Never did I imagine how my relationship with this man would push me down a road of so much pain and destruction...
Just a few short months into the marriage, the sweet romance I had hoped for was replaced by the reality of constant abuse by the man who vowed to love me.
He’d call me names, humiliate me... and even physically hit me.
I felt so worthless and unloved, I wanted to die. But still, I stayed with him, hoping that somehow, some day, things would change for the better.
Never did I imagine that my relationship with this man would turn my life into a complete mess.
The final straw came when I found out he had been cheating on me.
I filed for a divorce.
While this marked the end of an abusive marriage, it sent me reeling into a really dark place.
Drugs became my only source of comfort and my escape from all the hurt I was feeling.
What ensued was 12 years of destructive and riotous living. The days blurred into an endless repeat of working to fund my addiction, and indulging myself in drugs the moment I got home...
It was a downward spiral I could not get myself out of.
I just kept falling deeper and deeper into the lifestyle... At some point, I had to get into sex work just to pay for the drugs I was using.
I was so deep in my addiction, that even the law and going to prison could not shake me out of the lifestyle I was in.
Rehab and prison became a revolving door for me. I was in and out so often that I eventually had to give up my two daughters for adoption.
That was when I hit rock bottom. Losing my daughters was the lowest point of my life.
I knew something had to change. So I tried support groups, hospitalization, different treatment programs... but none of these worked.
The more I tried and the more I failed, the greater the despair grew in my heart.
Little did I know, God was working behind the scenes and reaching out to me this whole time.
One night while I was high on drugs, I switched on the TV and heard a man’s voice.
While I don’t recall the details of what he was saying, I still clearly remember these words that stood out to me:
This was my first time hearing about Jesus... and grace. And though fleeting, it left me deeply curious about who Jesus was.
Even though I was still deep in my lifestyle, I’d find myself wondering...
Was this Jesus for real? Why would He even care? Could He get me out of this mess?
For a season, nothing much changed. I just kept at my addiction and found myself in and out of prison.
I was having trouble sleeping so when I realized that my cellmate had access to a television, I borrowed it just to bide the long nights.
Little did I know, the Lord had plans to meet me that very night.
Flipping through the channels, I landed on a familiar voice I had heard some many nights before...
Hearing about salvation and God’s grace brought so much hope into my heart...
Even though I was filled with guilt, shame, and so much condemnation... As I listened to Pastor Prince preach, I began to see a loving Savior who was willing to embrace me. To save me out of this mess I was in...
I felt light seeping into my soul, a warmth I had never known before.
Never in my life had I heard about God the way Pastor Prince was preaching. How could God love and accept someone like me?
Yet, there in that cold prison cell at 4am in the morning, I experienced the sweet, sweet embrace of the unconditional love of Jesus...
After my encounter with the Lord in prison, I began to have a desire to know more about Jesus...
So I continued listening and devouring more and more of Pastor Prince's sermons.
The more I heard about Jesus, the more the chains of bondage began falling off one by one.
A number of sermons later, I received Jesus into my heart. And that’s really when my life began to radically be transformed.
My desire for drugs fell away... I got healthy.
My heart and mind were filled with light and with joy.
I met an amazing man who was deeply rooted in Jesus... who today I am blessed to call my husband.
For the first time in my life, I experienced what a truly loving and healthy relationship was like.
God had restored me more than I could hope for! In this environment of love, I was able to heal and unlearn all the wrong beliefs I had about myself.
I was free from drugs. I had met a godly man who loved me. I was happy.
But God’s restoration didn’t stop there.
When doctors told us I had cervical cancer because of the lifestyle I had, and that I wouldn’t be able to bear children, the Lord still came through for me.
He healed me.
And gave us a baby boy...
And again, when I was diagnosed with breast cancer some years later, the Lord came through for me and healed me!
Even though these seasons were tough, I kept holding on to God’s Word and believing that my Jesus would never let me down.
He didn’t, and He still hasn’t. I know He never will!
But you are a chosen people,
a royal priesthood,
a holy nation,
God’s special possession,
that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness
into his wonderful light.
—1 Peter 2:9 NIV
Now today, I help out in an organization that serves the special needs community, and this is what I tell them whenever I get to minister and serve them. It's all about Jesus, Jesus, Jesus... And I pray that you, the one reading this, will also believe this:
It doesn’t matter what situation or mess you’re caught in… Jesus, your Savior will rescue you.
If He could do it for me, He will surely do it for you!