My Conversion Story – Jeleane

I have not always been a Christian” 

Even though I was baptized into the Catholic Church, went to Catholic school and did all things Catholic until I was 18 and on my own that did not make me a true Christian.  Why?  I had a relative who chose my life pattern for 7 years which brought about anger, pain, and not knowing what love was.  He decided at 10 years old I was old enough for him to molest/rape and this continued for the next 7 years until I was finally strong enough to stop it.  His molestation came each time he was around and he would always tell me “I am the only one who really loves you”.  He would also say my parents only loved those who were younger than I was.

I remember each time he was around and the ugly act took place I would always sort of leave my body and watch from above.  It wasn’t until years later that I realized the reason I felt no fear was because Jesus was beside me always.  Not something I knew back then, just realized it recently.  I was told to “never tell as no one would believe me anyway”.  That’s pretty much a standard line for child molesters.  I’m sure there are many women out there today who can relate to what is said

Seems like this relative was always around when my parents told me I had to come home right after school or some other thing I was supposed to do.  Each time of course I was late and each time corporal punishment was handed out.  I can’t remember if my parents ever asked me why I was late or didn’t do what I was supposed to do I just remember the punishment.  They never said they loved me when they punished me but they would say it daily and I began to understand love meant pain.  To me, that type love was never anything I really wanted in my life.  Needless to say I was somewhat of a rebellion growing up as I had so much anger inside and for whatever reason mom got the brunt of that anger.  I also spent a lot of my teen years grounded!

Needless to say I have not had a very good relationship with my mother and it wasn’t anything she did or didn’t do, it was all the anger I had built up inside me.  That anger burned inside me for many years.  Even after I started talking about what happened to friends in the military, I still could not get past all that anger.  It’s probably why I am the person I am today.  I spent my career caring for others and making sure no one got hurt if I could possibly stop it.  I also listened to all who would come and talk to me.  With all the “bad” that happened to me as a child it made me a stronger person as an adult.  Not that I came up with this anytime soon.  It is only recently that I’ve been able to change.

Many times folks would tell me that I needed to forgive myself and then forgive my molester.  Now that’s something you can just run right out and do…..NOT!  He had taught me so many things….no does not mean no, love means pain, and there is no one out there who can protect you.  So how do you forgive something like that?? I cannot count the number of counselors I talked to; the group meeting I attended for women of childhood molestation, and how many times I told myself it wasn’t my fault.  Not once did that ever ring true for me.

“I realized I need Jesus and Accepted Him into my life”

We’ll fast forward to just a few years ago.  I had been doing an online ministry with friends although my job was mainly to stay in the background…..at least that is what I thought.  I found one of my friends lived close and I would go and spend time with her and I watched and learned how she shared Jesus with each and every person she met.  Then all of a sudden my friend and mentor died and went home to Jesus as she had always said she would.  I was angry, hurt and beyond consolation.  That is when I knew things were going downhill for me and if I didn’t do something I would slowly kill myself.  So, even with having a painful condition I threw away all my medications and gave myself over to the one person who could save me.  Believe me, the withdrawal from meds was not something I would ever want to go through again, but what happened during that time I would do again and again.  I was definitely lower than I thought possible when someone started speaking to me.  I knew it wasn’t my husband as he was nowhere to be seen at the time.  I heard God tell me that all the times I was molested/raped He was right there beside me as I watched over that poor tortured girl.  God told me that he had been with me all through all the darkness and trials I encountered along the way.  He also said no one would understand if I tried to tell them all I witnessed that day.  But, that is when I knew I would be okay and that Jesus was indeed with me and the Holy Spirit in my soul. 

“The biggest change I have noticed in my life”

Over the past two and a half years since Jesus came to me and we “talked”, I have found I am able to forgive even the most heinous of acts.  I was able to forgive my mother even though she had nothing to do with what happened, I never told her but I always considered her responsible.  And, the most important piece is I was able to forgive myself as nothing that happened was my fault.  My marriage is better, my relationship with my mother is better….although I think there are times she’s waiting for me to go back to who I was before…..and who could blame her??  Em challenged me to put a scripture reading on my Facebook page for five days and found that although this was completely outside my comfort zone I could not only do five days, but I could also continue on and actually write what was on my heart concerning each scripture I chose.  Never before have I felt so free and able to show how Christ helped me through a terribly long and painful life.  I also found unconditional love.  My husband had been my rock through trying times and even though I sometimes wanted to be alone again, he stuck with me through it all and through his unconditional love I have learned God’s unconditional love for me also.  What a thrill to finally be free of all the pain, anger and destruction I felt.  Christ had taken it away and left me a new person.

 

My Conversion Story-Merete

I have not always been a Christian. I was raised in a family where God was not something that was talked about. I was bullied at school, and I had a hard time fitting in. I never had anywhere to be safe. My mother was a good and kind person, but my father was not a good person. He was bad. My siblings got thrown out of the home, at a young age.

I realized I needed Jesus and received Him into my life when, I was watching a reality series called Ice Road Truckers. There was a Christian trucker that at first annoyed me, oh boy his going to pray again. Then I became aware of how he prayed, and what he was praying about. It was down to earth and like Jesus was sitting there right beside him. It amazed me, and I started to look forward to seeing him in the show. Jesus came slowly into my life, kind of sneaking in the back door. Untill I received him and prayed the sinner’s prayer. Confessing my sins, and opening my heart to Jesus and admitting that I need him in my life.

The biggest change I have noticed in my life is: Now I have a father that loves me, and I never had that. I asked for a man to come into my life. One that would accept me for who I am, and truly love me. The men that I had been with before were not in it for love. I met him and fell in love right away. It felt like I had come home. We got engaged and we got married. We lived in an apartment building where there was a lot of drugs and alcohol. I got more and more sick; my body got more and more drained of energy. I sat up all night, and I barely got any sleep. Then I prayed for help to get out and to find something better for us. A few moths later, I got a loan in a bank, and we were able to buy our one house. Thank you, Jesus for that.

My life is better, happier and calmer. It doesn’t mean that all my problems are gone, but I have Jesus I can rely on. The pressure to perform isn’t there anymore, I can give it all to Jesus.

 

My Conversion Story EM

I have not always been a Christian

I was a mixed up teenager who was angry with her parents for lying to her. I did not have any respect for the position “father” or even the idea of fatherhood.  My father lied to me and told me that his wife was my mother.  I accidentally found out that she was not and that my mother was never married to my father.  I was abandoned on the front door step of my grandmother’s home at age two weeks.  As far as I was concerned God did not care about me, or he would not have allowed that to happen. I became involved in activities that shamed my parents and would have shamed my grandmother.  I wanted to be in a girl’s home. I felt that anything was better than living with parents who lied to me.  I ran away from home at age 12.  I ran away because my father lied to me.  He told me I could go to visit my grandmother.  She was the only mother I knew from birth until I was age nine.  She never lied to me.  I wanted to be with her for my summer holidays.  I took the bus, the tube, and the train from Charring Cross to Aylesbury where my grandmother lived.  When I got there, I found out she was dying from cancer.  I took care of her as much as I could.  I slept next to her bedroom. Do I remember when I was converted? Maybe not the day, date, but the hour yes. It was right after my Grandmama died of breast cancer. She told me to go to sleep early. I just couldn’t!! That night, that very night I knew my Grandmama was going to Jesus. I felt it in my spirit. The loneliness that enveloped my soul was unbearable. You see she was the rock of my life. I am the only child of her only son [the one who would inherit the family estate]. I was in the midst of my cousins – you will find out about that when I publish my recovery story – but I felt totally and utterly alone! The hand of God reached down and touched me. I experienced peace like I have never experienced before. Strength – inner strength – that I had never experienced before and comfort. I heard, “You are not alone!’ I knew where my Grandmama was going, and I wanted to be there too! I knew that God loved me, and I wanted to love him back.

I realized I needed Jesus and received Him into my life when…

I was a very unhappy and broken teenager when my grandmother died. I remember her telling me that I needed Jesus.  I knelt down beside my bed and thought about eternity without Jesus, and my grandmother and the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart.  God reminded me that he has never abandoned me. The tears that flowed from my soul that night was for me and my grandmother. It was also because for the first time in my life I truly felt the love of God.  I experienced a deep peace that I had not felt since I found out about the beginnings of my life.  I knew God loved me, and I knew he was my personal Lord and Savior.  I knew he died on the cross for me.

The biggest change I have noticed in my life is..

I experienced a level of peace and joy, after I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, that I had never experienced before.  The joy of the Lord was my bubbling brook.  I found myself singing all day long.  Every song that I sang was about his love, mercy and peace. His praises flooded my mind.  I found myself talking to my friends about him. I knew where my grandmother was, and I knew that she was safe in the arms of Jesus.  That knowledge gave me peace.

I began to realize that the love of God was the greatest gift that I had ever received in my life.  It was free.  It did not require me to do anything, except to accept it and Jesus Christ.  However, I also knew that if I moved away from him or lost my way that his love for me would never change. I was no longer an emotionally abandoned teenager.  I had a father, one who loved me more than I could even begin to imagine.  I had a father, one who would never lie to me. I had a heavenly father who knew all about the sinful and despicable things that I had done, but he still loved me.  Everything around me changed.  I loved life. I enjoyed nature with a different mindset, but more importantly I wanted to help others.  I had a love for people that was not with me before my conversion.  I experienced forgiveness and the ability to forgive my father and step-mother.  I didn’t think that was possible.  But God’s love showed me how to love others even when they have hurt me. I learned at a young age how to “take the high road”.  I have been taking the “high road” ever since that day. WHY am I willing to serve God with all of my heart soul mind and strength? Because he brought me out of the mud, filth, and mire of sin, put me in the Holy Spirit bathtub, and cleanse me with the disinfectant of his precious blood – which is permanent erasure of sin, by the way – then called me “righteous”. I have not forgotten the moment.

So, yes he is my rock, my fortress, my strength and my everything! Do you know him? When you are troubled, and it feels like the entire world is on your shoulders, just know that it does not have to be that way. You can give it to THE ROCK!

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