For the majority of my childhood, I endured gross afflictions in the areas of first molestation, then rape and finally domestic violence. From issues with abandonment to issues with love, I suffered much from a very young age.
My family was unsaved. My grandmother raised me for the most part. I canít remember even one incident of my grandmother going to church. She would often send me to church for Easter Sundays while I was small. I basically grew up knowing there was a God, but had no clue about where exactly HE was or what HE was like. All I really knew was my environment which included perversion, alcoholism, drug addictions and violence. I was left mostly to myself during weekends, causing me to grow up much too fast.
At the age of twelve, I began a relationship with a grown man, eight and a half years my senior to be exact. It was an improper relationship that was full of physical and verbal abuse. I guess the best thing about that period in my life is that he made me go to school and to college. Still, being in an abusive relationship with a married man was hard. It took my entire childhood away from me. For a long time, Because of the previous rapes and molestation, incest even, and the bad relationships I was in and out of, I wrestled with suicidal tendencies, actually making the attempt 7 times. The last time I tried to take my life, I had been saved for nearly 3 years. I was a minister, a wife and a mother. From the outside looking in, I had it all together. Much to the contrary, my life was still falling apart because of the unresolved issues of my past.
Through two divorces, destitution, Gravesí Disease, heart problems before the age of thirty, infertility, homelessness, and sometimes flat rebellion, God continued to tug on my heart, helping me to feel again. He massaged the hardness that had developed over years of abuse. He taught me to cry it out on His shoulders, knowing they were big enough to hold me. Even when most people had given up hope that I would ever be healed or changed, God was still molding me.
In 2006, I not only became a college student once more, but also a business owner. God blessed me to open up Living Waters Publishing Company. I got married again to a pastor and great minister in April this year. Just when I lost all hope, God gave me a breakthrough and I walked into my destiny. My book, The Rape of Innocence: Taking Captivity Captive, chronicles the trials, the turmoil and the tears, but ends with the overwhelming victory I received through Godís love and faithfulness. When it used to hurt me to think of my past, now I tell it with a joyful heart because of the many people Iíve had opportunity to minister to.
It is my goal to help other people who have been victims of abuse. Itís important that they realize how to get free of the pain and the victimís mentality. Just going to church and praying doesnít cut it. There must be a close intimacy and trust with God that ushers in wholeness. I had to learn to trust Him, and though itís not always easy to believe, triumphant victory lies in Jesus Christ and Him