I grew up in a non Christian, dysfunctional family, though (thankfully) my parents sent my two sisters and I to Girls Brigade and Sunday School once per week. Ambulances and police cars were pretty regular to our house as my parents fought violently. As a result I became very close to my sisters and developed a deep faith through going to Sunday School, giving my life to Jesus when I was 13.
“From the age of 15 my family, unable to settle, moved around the UK and Ireland and I went through various stages, coping with teenage pressures, playing mother to my sisters whilst trying to support my own mother through desperate depression. Though my faith went hot and cold, I always believed in God. At the age of 18 I left home and my parents cut all ties with me.
That was such a difficult time for me. I didn’t have a church to support me but I met my now husband who at 20 took me in and helped me. We both got part time jobs so I could continue at university. I had to fight to see my younger sisters and coping with my parent’s rejection took its toll on me resulting in a breakdown. After we got married I was determined to find a church.
We became members at St Paul’s and built lots of strong friendships. We were desperate for children and after trying for 5 years we went through IVF. We had our beautiful daughter in January 2006. However in September our baby girl started to have seizures and she was diagnosed with a rare condition where her brain hadn’t developed properly. We were told it was unlikely she would walk or talk and she would need care for the rest of her life.
Well that was it for me. I’d had enough. I was so angry with God I tried to deny his existence but I was so surrounded by love and support from my church, friends and family that I just couldn’t deny Him. I began to read the bible much more (previously I’d hardly bothered) looking for answers. Over and over the bible talks of God being our healer, it tells us that He loves us and wants to prosper us and not harm us. So I decided to throw in my lot.
I thought If God is real and His word is real then I will believe it completely. I find the more I read the bible and the more I surround myself with His people and Him, the greater my faith becomes. Our little girl is now 7 years old. She is walking, communicating through signing as well as speech, she is developing and still making amazing progress. I believe God honours His word.
I have learned that life is a journey. It can be cruel, painful, exhausting and unfair but as long as I journey with Him, I know I’ll flourish.”
What’s your faith story?