Friday, September 16, 2011

From Death to Life – Five More Amazing Transformations!

“Before Mercy, I didn't want to live anymore. Now I can't wait to go out in the world and live,” said recent graduate, Tori. It is so exciting to see the young women who come through the doors of Mercy Ministries, not even knowing if they want to live, now have joy and hope for the future.

Five more amazing young women recently celebrated graduation with family, friends, residents and staff at the Monroe and Nashville homes. These ladies have personally experienced God’s life-transforming power and are excited to share their stories:

Monroe

Tasha

I was born prematurely, weighing only 2lbs. When I was sixteen months old, I was sexually abused by my birth mother and shaken, causing bleeding behind my eyes. I was placed in foster care and started going to counseling when I was just 2 ½ years old. I was adopted at the age of seven, but I still felt worthless. I was suicidal and depressed for as long as I can remember. In my teenage years, I began cutting, smoking marijuana and cigarettes, drinking, sleeping around and had two miscarriages. I no longer wanted to live the life I had chosen. I heard about Mercy from my adoptive mother and decided to apply. I wanted to learn to receive and give love and trust. I didn’t want to feel worthless anymore.

While at Mercy, God gave me hope and the ability to love and trust others. He has helped me to open my heart. Without Mercy and God coming into my life, I don’t know where I would be today. I am realizing that I am truly blessed with the family that adopted me.

After graduation, I plan to go to college to pursue music and theater. I also want to do mission work in Honduras. I am truly blessed that there is a place like Mercy Ministries, where I could get help free of charge. It has saved my life and given me hope. I am a precious daughter of Christ, and I have overcome!


Nashville

Alma

Growing up, I was sexually abused by two family members as well as three neighborhood boys. When my parents found out, they did not do much to protect me. They didn’t talk to me about it or get me professional help. It was ignored. For years, I struggled with anxiety and depression. I heard about Mercy when Nancy Alcorn came to speak at the Designed for Life Conference at James River Assembly, and I decided to apply.

While at Mercy, God gave me confidence and a voice. I no longer run away from life’s problems but face them head-on. I don't want to hide anymore. I know my identity is in Christ, and I do not carry shame, guilt or condemnation. The Lord has restored my relationships with my parents and friends. He has done great things above anything I expected or imagined!

After graduation, I will be working full-time while finishing my master’s degree in counseling. My long-term goal is to work with cancer patients and their families. I believe God is going to use me to touch the lives of others. I want to express my deepest appreciation to Nancy and to those who support Mercy Ministries. I no longer believe the past 27 years of my life have been wasted. I have a voice and I walk in the confidence of the Lord. Thank you for believing in me. I will dedicate my life to what God has called me to do.

Kristin

I was sexually abused by someone close to me for many years and physically and verbally abused by some family members. I struggled with perfectionism, people-pleasing, anxiety and depression. I didn’t want to trust anyone, especially not God. I wanted everyone to think I had it all together. My dad told me he heard about Mercy from a counselor, and I decided to apply.

While at Mercy, God has shown me what a loving father He is. He showed me that I don’t have to strive for perfection, because I don’t have to work for His love. I learned that I was predestined and that my worth is found in Christ.

After graduation, I plan to finish high school and get a job so I can go to college debt free! (Thank you Dave Ramsey!) I want to thank the donors and Nancy for your obedience to God. Because of you, I learned that I didn’t have to live my life in fear, and my confidence is found in Christ alone. Thank you for giving me so much hope for my future.

Tori

I grew up in a Christian home, but things were different than they appeared. My mom abandoned my brothers and me when I was 19 months old. I was severely physically, mentally and verbally abused growing up and was sexually molested by a family member for 17 years. I spent nine years cutting myself, because I felt like I had so much pain and no where to put it. I also started drinking and doing cocaine in high school to escape the pain I was feeling. I attempted suicide many times. I heard about Mercy from a graduate and decided to apply. But right before I came to Mercy, I was violently raped by an ex-boyfriend. When I walked through the doors, just 13 days after being raped, I was alone and scared, but then God slowly began to work in me. I soon realized God's plan was so much bigger than my plan.

While at Mercy, God completely transformed my life. I no longer want to live the way I used to live. I want to live my life for the Lord rather than the things of this world. I got my childhood back at Mercy, and my hope for the future was restored.

After graduation, I plan on doing an internship that includes college-level theology classes and hands-on local church ministry training. In the future I want to go to Cambodia and work with girls who are victims of sex trafficking. Before Mercy, I didn't want to live anymore. Now I can't wait to go out and live. Thank you to Nancy and everyone who supports Mercy for allowing the Lord to use you as a vessel to save lives.

Rebecca

As a child, I was raped by a family member and abandoned by my mother. I was later adopted into a loving family, but I struggled through the years with self-harm, drug addiction, promiscuity and depression. I didn’t know how to cope with the pain of my past. My doctor was a Mercy graduate, and she told me about the program. I looked it up online, and I heard God speak to me for the first time. I knew he was telling me that this was where I needed to be, so I decided to apply.

While at Mercy, God gave me a complete change of heart and mind. He has given me the strength to forgive those who hurt me in the past, and He's shown me my true identity in Him.

After graduation, I plan to finish high school and have plans to go on two missions trips in the summer of 2012 to Bulgaria and Cambodia. Thank you so much to Nancy for your obedience and for helping me get my life back and so much more. And thank you to the donors, because without you I would have never experienced true freedom.


Congratulations ladies! We are so proud of your bravery and maturity and can’t wait to see what the Lord has in store for you on your new journey with Him.