Friday, June 3, 2011

Two More Graduates Celebrate Freedom!

The courage shown by the young women who walk through the doors of Mercy Ministries is inspiring. They choose to leave the past behind and embrace all that God has in store for them. They come looking for answers, for hope and for freedom! This week, two more amazing young women graduated from the St. Louis home, completely restored and excited about the future. Here are their incredible stories of being pulled out of death and darkness into the life that Christ died for them to have:

Sarah

I was raised in a home with a Christian mother, but I didn't have a close relationship with my dad, and I struggled with people pleasing and perfectionism to gain his love. He travelled around the world with his job and was rarely home. I was also exposed to a lot of rage from an alcoholic family member who sexually molested me. I used self-harm and purging as a means to deal with the pain. In high school, my parents divorced, and shortly after that, two of my close friends were murdered. The pain overwhelmed me, and I spiraled into a deep depression. I attempted suicide several times throughout high school. When I heard about Mercy from a friend in June of 2010, I knew I needed help. I was finally in a place where I was willing to admit my struggles and listen to someone who could provide answers and a hope for a future free from all the pain.

While at Mercy, The Lord showed me that He is not the author of my pain. I've been pulled out of the darkness and brought into the marvelous light of Jesus Christ. The walls have come DOWN! There's no more hiding. I've been delivered from fear and know the steadfast, constant love of God towards me. I know now that He is good and that He will never leave nor forsake me. Trust has been restored, and I can now freely love and BE LOVED.

After graduation, I plan to pursue a degree in counseling and cardiology. I desire to do full-time missions in Northern Africa and Southern India; working with children of soldiers, refugees, and human sex trafficking victims.


Shannon

I was emotionally, physically, and sexually abused from childhood into my adult years. I struggled with self-harm and an eating disorder. Things got so bad, I eventually had to quit school and my job. I spent two years going in and out of psychiatric units. I felt like my life was a failure. I wanted to die and made several attempts to kill myself. I knew I needed to get help if I ever wanted to finish school and have a job or a family of my own. My mom told me about Mercy, and I decided to apply.

While at Mercy, I was shown God’s unconditional love, forgiveness and grace. I have messed up so many times in life, and even on my journey at Mercy, but every time I messed up, I was always shown love and forgiveness.

After graduation, I plan to finish my degree in nursing and am really looking forward to getting involved in my church community.


Congratulations Sarah and Shannon! It is so exciting to see how your lives have been completely transformed and the joy you now have. You’ve shown heart and determination in the journey to regain your life and we are very excited to see you live out your freedom.