I’ll just lay it right out for you: I grew up in a pretty broken family. It’s quite common these days. My life, like that of many others I know, has been a testament to the veritable grab bag of psychological and emotional issues stemming from an unstable environment. I paid way too much attention to boys from an early age which led to, ummm, questionable behaviors. This is purely because I was desperate (reckless behavior implied) for some sort of male attention in my life. Being an older child with plenty of responsibilities I matured rather quickly. I preferred older crowds, people who introduced me to drugs and alcohol. First cigarette? Twelve. First bottle of alcohol? Twelve. Virginity? Fourteen. There you go – no flowery terms for that. And the circumstances surrounding that last event literally shaped the next decade of my life.
To spare you some of the gruesome details of my past I’ll just let you know where those decisions got me in the end: alcoholism, drug abuse, and a depraved mind. Very compromising situations. Shame for myself and hatred for those closest to me. So who’s fault was all of that? My parents who had me when they were teens and obviously had no idea what they were doing? No. My friends who betrayed me? No. All of their family and friends who were hurt by their family and friends who were hurt by their family and friends? No, and hopefully you get where I am going.
The first step in my process toward wholeness was laying down blame and taking responsibility for my own actions. Did people wrong me? Yes. Did I hurt my family and friends? A lot! Thank God for forgiveness and reconciliation. Those are our responsibility.
My experience with God was seemingly untraditional according to today’s standards. He met me in my living room. I was drunk, hurting physically, and my entire existence was miserable. The truth is that I was looking for peace and had no idea how to find it. So peace came and found me. He met me in that place – as broken and unworthy as I was. He took the drugs, he took the alcohol, and most importantly, he took the desperation. For seven years now I have been walking faithfully and the best part is that I haven’t had to make a single decision for myself. I give them all to Him. And how do I know which direction to go? That peace He bought when He came to rescue me comes back over and over again when those crossroads come about.
So here I am today; happily married, in our own stable home, in ministry to help others who are in the same type of hopeless situations I once was. Being the hands and feet of Jesus to those who have given up on their dreams. And I’m still learning and growing every step of the way!
If you have any questions for me, please feel free to comment below. And keep an eye out for my next post, Stir it Up?, which will share ways to keep your emotions in check until you are truly ready for a relationship. Love and blessings – Jenny.