From an early age, abuse found its way into my life and didn’t leave for years. My earliest memories of sexual abuse by my father occurred when I was 7 and my sister was 8. We didn’t know what to do and feared my father enough to keep the secret. The mental and physical abuse was just as severe—we were often on the receiving end of his wrath. My sister and I finally revealed what was going on to my grandmother only for her to call us liars and told us not to say another word. My grandfather had knowledge of the situation but was no help as he was abusive as well. It got to the point where we ran away three times and I contemplated ending my life. My sister admitted wanting to kill my father but feared spending her life in jail.
The day that my father died of cancer, my brother and sister rejoiced as we were no longer subject to his terror. I had the same anger towards my father until something changed in my life a few months ago. While attending Temple of Faith’s Wednesday Night Bible Study, I prayed to Jesus Christ to forgive my sins and asked Him to enter into my heart. That same night, God helped me to forgive my father for the years of abuse my sister and I were subjected to. I know there is much more for me to learn about the Christian walk, but I am excited and passionate about following Jesus.
I thank Jesus for dying on the cross for my sins and rising from the grave three days later so that I might have life. Today I hope and pray to be a growing and effective Christian and influence those around me. I pray for anyone who has been abused that they get help and ask Jesus to take control of their life. God has become my new father and He can become your Father too.
I have also learned that Jesus does miracles—in many ways my life is a miracle! The Lord has saved my life on numerous occasions. In one instance, I put my hand through a glass window and severely cut my arm. It took 80 stitches to put my arm back together. God was with me that day as I was only a half-inch from a main artery in my arm being severed. He also healed me when I had a large blood clot in my left lung that the doctors thought would kill me. I used to take life for granted but now that I have accepted Jesus, I know that I have so much more to live for.
Since I have been attending Temple of Faith regularly, my attitude has changed in a big way. I have more love for Jesus and those around me than ever before. Pastor Bea Lamonte and Pastor Samuel and Leah Lamonte are wonderful pastors and have impacted my life forever. They care about people in an awesome way! I have witnessed the church operate like a family where people are truly concerned for one another. I have gained many friends and appreciate the support given by my new family.
I have been through many trials that have brought me to this point. Today I can say that Jesus is first in my life, and then I am second.