I love God. I really love Him. He set me free from chains that kept me living in a cycle of misery and darkness. If He had not come into my life when He did, I wouldn’t be alive today. I know that. I was a drug addict. For fourteen years I shot dope into my arms, sometimes three and four times a day. It started soon after I turned twelve. The mental and physical abuse in our home forced me to find a way of escape. My mother lay dying and somehow, I figured out if I took the morphine prescribed to alleviate her pain, it would work to take me away from the screaming, swearing, beatings, and bullying that were never-ending in our home. It did, but then I became addicted and I spiralled into a world of even greater pain and despair .
Somehow I ended up in an emergency room in New Jersey. That’s where God found me. He turned the light of His love on and completely removed my dependence on drugs. I became a new creature in Christ and devoted myself to the One whose power was greater than the addiction.
It’s been a number of years since my initial encounter with Christ. I went onto University and even got on the Dean’s Honour List in spite of all the drugs I took and the many times my head was bashed against a wall. I now work in a profession where I am respected. My colleagues and friends know nothing of my past.
Last year, God reminded me where He took me from. The memories hit me hard. People from the past starting coming into my life; people who I had forgotten.
“You’re a miracle,” some said.
Others declared, “I thought you died.”
I fought the images flooding my mind. Kidnapped, raped, beaten and held against my will….. I didn’t want to remember. I felt as if it were happening all over again. .
Write your story, God whispered to my heart.
I wrote, but I did it just to get the pictures out of my head.
“Now share it,” He quietly said.
“I can’t. I just can’t.”
Images of friends shaking their heads in disgust made me cringe and close my ears to what God was asking of me.
I started running in the woods. Running to get away from what I knew God was calling me to do.
God nudged me again. “Share your story. Tell of those dark places. Let them know how bad it had become and how nothing worked to break the hold of the despair, shame and fear. Then speak out about my power to deliver and set free. ”
I thought of where God brought me from and how broken I had been. I remember the many times I wanted to end my life, but even when I accidentally overdosed, I somehow pulled through.
God touched me. He redeemed my life and completely turned me around. From the moment He did, I wanted to share His love, His grace, His mercy to whoever would listen.
My unwillingness to tell my story made me feel selfish. He’s done so much for me. He set me free when nothing else worked. I committed my heart and life to Him but now I find myself asking, am I in and out in my walk with God depending on what He asks of me? Hadn’t I told Him, I would do anything He wanted? He’s asking me to tell what happened so that maybe, just maybe, it will help someone find their way out of darkness and into His wonderful Light.
Am I in and out whenever it suits me? Am I completely in with God, committed wholeheartedly to serving Him regardless of the cost to myself? Or do I have one foot in the Kingdom and the other out in the world?
There is no other choice. I cannot be a partly committed Christian. He bought me with a price. I belong to Him. My life is His. I am in one hundred percent. If others hear and turn away from me, it will hurt, but if I don’t tell, His disappointment will break my heart. My relationship with God means more than anything or anyone. I owe my life to Him.
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