Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A Testimony of Transformation

Jaime came to Mercy Ministries in June of 2007. She was completely broken and desperate to be loved. She wanted to share her testimony with you as well as what God is doing in and through her life after Mercy…

“I grew up in an abusive family with alcoholic parents. I was raised to be atheist. I was sexually, physically, verbally and emotionally abused during my entire childhood. As a result, I developed an eating disorder at the young age of 4 years and began seeing a psychiatrist at age 5. When I was 12 years old my father left home and never returned. Soon after he left, my mother had a nervous breakdown that lasted for what seemed like a lifetime. Now, not only was I struggling with anorexia and bulimia, but I began smoking cigarettes and marijuana, drinking hard liquor, practicing witchcraft, stealing and I started self-harming. I quickly became addicted to drugs and alcohol and had multiple attempts at suicide. I went from one treatment center to another, spent time in hospitals and psych wards and was diagnosed with 11 psychiatric disorders. Around the age of 21, I was living as a hermit because I was too afraid of the public.

Finally, I cried out to God, wondering about the life He had given me. The next day I was online looking at suicide information and Mercy Ministries came up. I laughed at first because it was a faith-based Christian program. But out of despair, I applied immediately. By the grace of God, I was accepted and I arrived at Mercy on June 19, 2007. One month later I gave my life to the Lord! Being a Christian was so foreign to me, but the love of the staff at Mercy became tangible proof of the love of God. Time and time again, I was given another chance. That’s what opened my eyes to wanting to know more about God. After months of facing my issues in counseling, renewing my mind with the Word of God, and replacing the lies I believed with the truth of the Word, I graduated from Mercy Ministries on December 17, 2007.

After graduation, I returned to the same volatile and destructive home environment that I had removed myself from for the past few years. Therefore, it was a trying time. I fell and got up again, but something was different this time. I had been born again and I was now a new creation in Christ. No matter how far I fell, I could not get away from the love of God. . However, I continued taking medications that were shutting down my body’s systems. Finally, in August 2008 it became apparent to me that I was to stop taking my medications and move to Tulsa, Oklahoma from Ohio.

As soon as I arrived in Tulsa, I started attending Victory Bible Institute and the In Ministry Training program. I was a beautiful disaster; a mess with a new and amazing hope. Due to my obedience and pure desire to follow Christ, I have had amazing opportunities to serve God and my mother actually gave her life to the Lord! I am given lots of opportunities to witness to and serve a hurting world. A team of us, from Victory Bible Institute, go pray and hand out groceries in the poverty stricken areas. We also hold church service for the children in the area.

I am walking in freedom, and I have never had such a “real” smile! God has used everything that was considered a “flaw” to the world for His good! My pain and wrong choices have been used to help others see their bondage as a testimony and not a label. My testimony has been used to inspire others to want to experience freedom that is found only through the love of God. I am living the life that I could not even fantasize about, which is a life that I truly did not know existed. I thank God every day for Mercy Ministries taking me in and loving me despite my mistakes. There is no doubt in my mind that I would be dead without the transforming work of the Lord through Mercy Ministries.

Jaime