Friday, February 11, 2011

Mercy Graduates Excited to Pursue Their Dreams!

Seven more Mercy Ministries graduates have had their lives and dreams restored! Many of them felt unloved and rejected by the world, but while at Mercy, God showed them they are beloved daughters of the King! These graduates from our Monroe, St. Louis and Nashville homes were so excited to celebrate with friends and family this week. They have truly been transformed and can’t wait to share the good news of God’s love and faithfulness. Here are their incredible stories of restoration and hope:

Monroe

Malorie

My life before Mercy was a masquerade. I was a pastor’s daughter and felt I was being watched under a magnifying glass by everyone. I used self-harm to cope. Out of curiosity, I got involved with pornography at age 11 and it damaged my view of everyone and everything. In high school, I was sexually abused and became very confused. I still pretended like everything was okay on the outside, but on the inside I was dying. I heard about Mercy from a friend and decided to apply.

While at Mercy, God has shown me true love and grace. I have been brought back to life by a Savior who said I am worth it and my heart that was once stone has now been turned to flesh. Before Mercy, I was a walking corpse, but now every moment has meaning and purpose. I have a choice and I choose life!

After graduation, I plan to finish my degree in sports medicine and in the future I will pursue a career in music and ministry. I want to take this opportunity to thank all Mercy board members, staff and supporters. You all have made an investment in me that is multiplying. I have truly been blessed by God to walk this Mercy journey. Praise God I am FREE!


Lisa

Growing up, I often felt like I wasn’t important. While I could act the part of being a Christian, deep down I didn’t trust God or feel loved by Him. I often let my emotions affect my diet, so I restricted my food or overate. I had a very low self-esteem and was going from one unhealthy relationship to the next. I also struggled with an anxiety disorder and held onto a lot of unforgiveness and bitterness. My family found out about the issues I was struggling with, and my cousin told me about Mercy. I knew I was getting worse, so I decided to apply.

While at Mercy, God has given me peace. I know I have His grace when I mess up. I’ve learned how important thoughts and words are and how to replace the negative with positive. God has revealed who He really is to me and I now know that I have value and worth.

After graduation, I’d like to go to culinary school, or study music or dance. My dream is to move back to Canada and open up a dinner theater. I would also like to do some kind of ministry with the homeless.


St. Louis

Ashley

Before Mercy, I was caught in a never-ending cycle of drugs and alcohol and some very unhealthy and unsafe relationships. My life was out of control and it really scared me. I was in so deep and I didn’t know how to get out. My joy and zeal for life was gone. I knew I was missing an intimate relationship with the Lord, so I searched online for help and found Mercy Ministries. I thought they could help me turn my life around, so I decided to apply.

While at Mercy, God has restored my zest for life. My dreams and passions and desires are back. I feel like I have a purpose on this earth now, and I know that God truly loves me and calls me His own. He has shown me His true character, and I know that He will never leave me and that His grace covers everything that I’ve done.

My future plans are to go to Bible College because I have such a passion to know God more, and I am hungry to help people. I am planning to make a new start in a new place. To any young girls out there, there is hope, there is an answer, and God does have an abundant future in store for you!


Nashville

Amanda

Before I came to Mercy, my life was in complete shambles. I was abandoned by my biological mother when I was five years old and from that point on, felt that no one could love me. I struggled for years with self-harm and eating disorders. I was also addicted to drugs and alcohol. I attempted suicide once and failed, leaving me with even more self-hatred. I was emotionally, verbally and sexually abused by my peers, and I verbally and emotionally abused other people as a result. I thought all of this was a normal way to live, and I hated it. My parents found Mercy’s website and told me about it, so I decided to apply because I was ready for a real change.

While at Mercy, God has shown me so much. He’s shown me that I am beautiful, I am His, and I am valuable. He has completely restored my purity and my relationship with my parents. I no longer feel guilty or ashamed of my past, and I know that my past does not dictate my future. God is my defender and my protector, and He has given me new hope and set me free.

After graduation, I plan to go back to high school and graduate in May. I would like to go to cosmetology school in the fall. I also want to continue to deepen my relationship with God. I have a desire for missions and volunteering with women and children who’ve been rescued out of human trafficking. I would like to start a Christian center for teens. I really just want to show the world Jesus as much as I can! Thank you so much, Mercy, for all you’ve done for me!

Annie

Before coming to Mercy, I lived in fear and struggled with pride and unforgiveness. I felt inadequate and didn’t believe God loved and accepted me. I hated myself. I struggled with anger and was easily offended which led me to be verbally and emotionally abusive to others. I heard about Mercy from a friend who works at the St. Louis home and decided to apply.

While at Mercy, the Lord helped me see that I believed lies about myself and others. He showed me His truth. God has helped me to forgive others and most importantly, forgive myself. He has shown me how vital it is to stay in the Word, to stay in prayer, and to be around other believers. This program has changed my life and God continues to heal my heart.

After graduation, I plan to get involved in church and hope to find work in a non-profit organization, education, or social work.


Rachel

Before Mercy, I was hopeless and didn’t even want to live. The pain of my past led me down a dark path of eating disorders, self-harm, depression and anxiety. Every day was filled with fear and pain. I felt like nobody cared about me and that even God had left me and was mad at me for the choices I made. I was mad at Him for allowing things to happen the way they did. I didn’t have much desire to live, but a small part of me thought there might be a better way of life. One of my parents’ friends told us about Mercy. I looked on the website, thought it looked like a nice place, and decided to apply.

While at Mercy, God has totally transformed every aspect of my life. I know that He loves me for who I am and I do not have to hide from Him. He has forgiven me for what I did to myself and I don’t have to be ashamed. My value comes from God alone, and not from my looks, weight or what others say. I am free from the depression, anxiety, eating disorders and cutting that once tried to rob me of my life. God is SO good. He has restored my joy and my life has definitely been transformed!

While at Mercy I have been able to dream more about my future, which is so exciting to me! After I finish high school, I am going to college. I definitely feel like God is leading me to the mission field. I really want to help others and show them God’s love. Thank you Mercy SO much for helping me fall back in love with Jesus! I am so glad to have my life back!

Jorey


I was emotionally neglected growing up and my father was very angry. I was fearful and acted out in an effort to get attention and love, but all I got was rejection. No one knew how to handle me. I figured I was a lost cause and would never amount to anything. I began using self-harm to try and ease my pain. I felt abandoned, rejected and hopeless and became suicidal. My mom had a relationship with God, but I never knew who He really was. My mom saw the Mercy book “Cut” online and bought it. We looked into the program and I decided to apply.

While at Mercy, I learned who God was and how much he loves and cares for me. I learned who I am in Him and that I am not alone. I no longer have to use self-harm to deal with life. I know that God has a purpose for me.

After graduation, I plan to finish high school and I would like to go to school for evangelism. Coming to Mercy is one of the best decisions I have ever made. Thank you to Nancy and everyone. Mercy is the best!


Congratulations ladies! We are so excited to see you leave Mercy with a passion for life that is contagious as you reach out to others who are in need of His healing! We can’t wait to see what God has in store for you!