Growing up I was raised in a Christian household. My parents were married for about 25 years they had five children together. And started to go through a really rocky time in their relationship and decided to divorce. And from the time that I was 10 until the time I was 16 when I left the home, we went through a really difficult time. I was taught at a very young age how to handle adversity and stress. And should have never went through the things that I went through growing up. I kind of stepped out of church for quite some time.
Unfortunately did a lot of things that I wish that I could go back and undo because I was never good at being bad. The Lord really started walking me through uh, a pretty intense fire. My marriage had come to an end and I started to have to deal with deployment, a divorce, and I now had three children. I was running and managing two businesses. I didn’t know that while going through all of these fires it was gonna uncover all the other ones that I had suppressed for so long.
Mental and physical abuse as a child, a rape. Um, abandonment and betrayal in my marriage multiple times and I just…it all surfaced. And I was really just suffocating. Um, I self-medicated for a while and now looking back I know because there was just nothing else that could fix my life except the Lord.
On April 2nd, 2017, it was a Sunday. And my older sister sent me a text that morning and all it said was, “go to church today, you won’t regret it.” I read the text and I thought, “OK, what do I have to lose, I’m desperate right now. I’m in such a bad place.” And I think if I wasn’t made to handle adversity the way I was as a child I probably would have been suicidal. I just was at an ultimate low. And had nowhere else to go.
Got in the car and I, you know, punched in the GPS Grace Community Church in Washingtonville and, and my oldest daughter Chloe and I walk into the sanctuary and instantly every hair on my body just stood up and worship started and I knew instantly that I was there for a purpose. That I was supposed to be there that day. The worship team was incredible and Pastor Jarrod comes out and delivers this extremely powerful message.
At the end of the service, um…Pastor Jim comes out and he says, “you know we really had it on our heart as a pastoral team that at the end of this series we needed to do baptisms, so we are going to do baptisms right now.” And I’m like, “this is why I’m here. I can feel it on my heart.”
I’m like making excuses for myself in my head. “Yeah but, it’s my first time here and you know, I did my makeup and my hair’s done and you know,” I was just making all of these excuses, and as I’m making these excuses, Pastor Jim is up there, and I’m sure it’s the Lord strategically placing the words in his mouth. He says, “stop making excuses for yourself. If you feel that it’s you and you are supposed to be here today. It’s you.”[Clip of Pastor Jim] “Maybe you’re still wondering should I do this, should I do this, should I do this? Let me encourage you, the answer is yes.
The LORD knows how stubborn I am and He also knows how to get to my heart. So while I was struggling with this I felt a tap on my left shoulder. And I looked over and it was my daughter Chloe. And she said, “Mom, I want to go up there and get Baptized.” and I said, “What?! Honey, do you know what that means?
And she looked at me with all of the confidence and certainty and said, “yeah, I choose Jesus Christ as my LORD and Saviour and I want to go up there and get baptized.”
And I said, “Wow! Well, I guess we’re going to get baptized then.” So I grabbed her hand and in the pool of water we went and her and I were baptized together that day. And my life has never been the same since. [Clapping]
Until you’re miserable you’re undeliverable and I am living proof of that. Until I was completely miserable and broken and sad and self-destructive did I go back and find the LORD again.