As a high-needs case, I was moved up the semi-independent housing waitlist and was placed in a group home within a few weeks.
I had to navigate the challenges of paying rent, bills, and grocery shopping, all while preparing for my final exams in grade 12 and working a part-time job. Overwhelmed by the weight of my circumstances, I found myself spiralling in and out of destructive behaviours.
It was at this time that some key people came into my life and reflected the real love of Jesus, their only agenda to love their neighbour as themselves.
Amidst the chaos and despair, a glimmer of hope emerged. I began conversing with people whose lives had been transformed by Jesus. These people, some knowingly and some unknowingly, introduced me to a different perception of Jesus.
They bore witness in the way that they loved that Jesus wasn’t a distant and unapproachable deity, but a personal and loving Saviour.
As I spent hours listening to these people speak about God’s immense love for me, a profound realisation took hold of my heart. In Jesus, I discovered something invaluable, a treasure surpassing all my suffering.
With no family or relatives to turn to, encountering Jesus became an anchor I refused to let go of. His love felt too precious to miss out on. All my life, I’ve longed for a love like this.
And during a service trip to the Philippines, I surrendered my heart to the Lord. The pain, abuse, loneliness, and suffering I endured suddenly found purpose and meaning on the road that led me to my King Jesus.
Through His boundless grace, I found healing and restoration. Jesus became my refuge, the rock that I could now build my life on, as I navigated the tumultuous waters of my past. He understood the depths of my pain, for He too was abused and rejected by the world.
In Him, I discovered a personal saviour, a friend who walked beside me, holding me in the palm of His hand. His love washed away my shame and replaced it with an unwavering sense of worth.
Jesus rescued me from the clutches of darkness, guiding me towards a future filled with hope and purpose.
The father I was waiting for as a child may have never come to my rescue but my Father in heaven did, all those years ago, and today, as His Son died on the cross so that I may be in right standing with Him.
Jesus set me free from the shackles of my past, breaking the chains that once bound me. I am no longer a prisoner of the horrors I endured.
And through His grace, I was granted a perspective that propelled my freedom: that every person is made in the image of God, intended for good and not evil.
My heart holds forgiveness for my abusers because their actions stemmed from their own brokenness. They, too, are trapped in the darkness, far from the design God had intended for them.
The Scripture in 1 Peter 5:10 reminds us that after enduring suffering for a little while, the God of all grace restores, confirms, strengthens, and establishes us in His eternal glory.
This verse fills me with immense hope. His healing power transcended the pain I suffered, and His light pierced through even the darkest of circumstances. No mountain was too high, no valley too deep to deter His unwavering love for me.
Jesus was the answer to my deepest needs and the healer of my deepest wounds.
The pain we endure on Earth pales in comparison to the eternal joy that awaits us in His presence.
As I look back on my journey, I stand in awe of the incredible transformation that Jesus has worked in my life.
In Jesus, I found
a love that never fails,
a hope that never fades,
and a joy that surpasses all circumstances.
My identity as a daughter of the King of kings and a co-heir with Christ defines me now.