Monday, February 15, 2010

Monroe and Nashville Homes Celebrate Seven More Graduations!

Last week, seven more residents at the Monroe and Nashville homes graduated from the Mercy Ministries program! These young women have hope for their futures and powerful stories of transformation. We would like to share their stories with you:


Monroe

Mandie

6Before Mercy, my life was consumed by anorexia, bulimia, over-exercising and self-harm. along with a 10 year addiction to laxatives, diuretics and diet pills. I was unable to function as an adult, and I truly believed God had neglected and abandoned me. My poor self-image left me completely hopeless and desperate for a different life. After endless attempts to get help, I heard about Mercy through my treatment center team and knew it was my last hope.

Since being at Mercy, I have been completely transformed. I never knew that life could be this incredible! Instead of the old worldly passions and obsessions, my life now has a purpose beyond anything I could have ever imagined. Knowing who I am in Christ has taken me to an amazing and incredible level of dedication to fulfill the purpose God has for me. Without Mercy, I know I would not be here.

After I graduate, I plan to work with young women so I can teach them about the love and acceptance our Savior gives freely. I also want to pursue a degree in nutrition. Now I feel confident about my future because I know that God will be faithful to complete this good work He has started in me.


Kati

4Because of sexual abuse in my childhood, I believed many lies about myself, others, and God. Perfectionism and fear consumed my life and my world felt chaotic. In order to deal with the hurt, I began self-harming and developed an eating disorder that eventually led me down a path of depression and suicide attempts. I just wanted to give up because I felt totally and completely alone. Trying to stop the self-destructive behaviors seemed impossible in my own power, but I wanted to believe that God had a better life for me than the one I was living. I knew I could not break free by myself, so I began the application process for Mercy in hope of finding the help I needed.

At Mercy, I have been blown away with what God has done in my life. I came in not knowing that I could have a relationship with God and am leaving knowing the truth that I can! Life is about choices. We can be obedient to what God calls us to - we can choose life or death and I chose life! I finally have hope because I know God loves me with an everlasting love!

After I graduate, I am moving back to Colorado Springs and plan to get involved in my local church. I am keeping my heart open to what God desires for me and am looking forward to the journey with Him.


Stephanie

7Before Mercy, I was consumed with death. Out of self-hatred, I abused myself and had no desire to live. There were times when I would literally try to stop my heart from beating. I was also in a losing battle with an out of control eating disorder. My life was very dark and I wanted to end it… but God had a different plan. I made the decision to apply to Mercy because I knew if I were to get help, it needed to be through a program that had God as the foundation.

Now I am not the same person I was when I walked into Mercy. God has completely transformed me and I hardly recognize the girl I used to be. Not only has He completely set me free from the eating disorder, but He has also been healing me of the physical side affects from the damage I caused my body. I am free! For the first time in my life, I am genuinely happy to be alive. That in itself is a miracle!

God has placed a desire in my heart to impact my generation so after graduation, I plan to use my passion for music, youth and evangelism to reach young people for Christ. I know I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.


Jordan

3I grew up in a Christian home, but my parents separated when I was very young so my mom had to raise me on her own. When I was six years old, she died of cancer and my life turned completely upside down. My dad took me in, and his house was always full of strangers. I was sexually abused continually, which left me very hurt and confused. I prayed for a way out of the sexual abuse, and eventually my pastor helped me leave the environment I was in and pursue a college degree. In college I met a friend who was a Mercy graduate and she told me stories about how girl’s lives were truly transformed through the Mercy program. I realized that I needed help so when I was given an application, I prayed about it and decided to apply.

When I came to Mercy, I experienced the kind of love that I needed. God totally met me where I was, and I began to learn about who I am in Christ and how He sees me. I am forgiven! I feel safe and know that God loves me, and I can trust Him with my past, present and future. I am now walking in freedom.

After Mercy, I plan to pursue a degree in massage therapy. I hope to be a light to other young women like myself and show them that their past does not have to dictate their future.


Nashville

Amber

2Before I came to Mercy, an addiction to drugs, alcohol and promiscuity led me to join the wrong crowd. Searching for love and acceptance in the wrong places, I ended up pregnant at the age of 15, and I fell into a deep depression. I knew I needed serious help, so when a friend told me about the Mercy program, I decided to apply.

At Mercy, God has shown me that He is always faithful and I can come to Him when I am in despair because He will meet me right where I am. My time at Mercy has been life-changing and I know I will never forget it.

After graduating, I plan to study psychology. I want to be a voice to this lost and hurting world and tell people about the hope they have in Christ. I want to stand up for the weak and help them find freedom like I did.


Alex

1My life was out of control before I came to Mercy. Many encounters of abuse left me feeling unwanted and deeply depressed. I experimented with drugs, alcohol, inhalants, and self-harm in an attempt to fill up the emptiness in my heart and was left feeling completely broken. I believed God was telling me that He loved me and had something better for me so I knew I had to apply to Mercy if I wanted to give Him a chance to transform my life.

At Mercy, God has shown me that I am beautiful and I believe Him! I feel like God has breathed new air into my lungs and now I truly have life! I have learned that there is freedom in purity, and I’m so thankful for this new perspective.

After graduation, I am looking forward to getting involved in short term mission trips through my local church. I believe marriage and a career as a police officer are also in my future!


Lindsay

5Before Mercy, I was controlled by counting calories. At first, I would allow myself to eat and would then purge the food, but eventually I wouldn’t eat at all and would still purge. I was incredibly unhealthy both inside and out and lost my identity to a number on a scale. My mom was concerned and showed me the application for Mercy, so I decided to give it a shot and apply because I knew I needed help.

During my time at Mercy, I have been completely delivered from an eating disorder. I’ve learned who I really am and where my value truly comes from and the love of God has impacted me in a powerful way.

After graduation, I want to pursue a degree in photography, which I someday hope to use on the mission field. My time at Mercy has been an amazing opportunity for me and I am so thankful for how God is going to use it to impact my future.


Congratulations ladies! We are cheering you on as you live your life to the fullest and take the light of Christ with you wherever you go.