I must tell the world what God is able to do! -- Delivered from gang, drugs, etc.

I knew a girl... After 20 years of seeking acceptance and love, she had finally found what she was looking for. She had sought it out in a bottle, even looked for it down the barrel of a gun. But she never seemed to find what she so desired and needed. In her life long search she never realized that although she had been seeking, and desperately hunting love, it had been right in front of her all along. It took many trials and tribulations, many life lessonsbefore she finally understood that happiness comes from happenings, but joy comes from the Lord. She had tried to live to impress others, she had tried to live to make everyone else smile, but on the inside she was hurting, there was a frown that no make-up could hide.

In her search to be loved, accepted, and still be herself, she found out that life often sends us what we ourselves order. There are times when trouble seemed to follow her everywhere she went, but it is simply because she ordered trouble, and in turn, it was sent to the mailing address at which it had been requested. Kind of like ordering clothes out of a magazine! She sought out trouble because she wanted to be seen. She would open the doors and allow trouble to come in because she saw trouble as attention, whether positive or negative, and she saw attention as acceptance. All her life she wanted to be accepted. She came to a point of complete hopelessness, and it was at that point that she decided to turn to gangs and drugs. She had tried suicide, used her body to please others, ran away from home, committed crimes, and even pretended to be someone she wasn't.

All of this gave her temporary happiness, but none of this brought satisfaction to her life. All she wanted was love and acceptance. As she drug her feet through the cold grass, that lies in the valley of deception, she saw an exit that led her to drugs and gangs. She noticed that in gangs they had a love for one another. When it came to watching out for each other, they would stick closer to you than a brother. Never once did she see someone betrayed in the gangs, at least not on TV Gangs were united, close, like a family. They watched out for one another, and love seemed to be plentiful. Why couldn't she fit in? Deception. She found herself turning to gangs. She began to believe that she would find all she wanted and so desired hidden deep in the deception of gangs. After making up her mind, she searched only a moment and then she found her place.

She had been living in the city for a short while, when she began experimenting with drugs. She had never in her life done drugs. She had drank, smoked cigarettes, dipped snuff, and everything else but never had she messed with illegal drugs. She was the only one in a family of 6 to have made it through High School without experimenting with drugs. But, now here she was 21 years old, and getting high for the first time on crack. The first time, was scary. She had really not wanted to do it, but she saw the acceptance behind it, and so she gave in to peer-pressure, and moved from "just trying it" to, "can't live without it." One mistake, which could have, and often times does, become fatal. She found herself sneaking away to be with her new friends. They called her "precious", and told her that they would "cut" for her. She felt so accepted, and of course after a few times of getting high, she began to enjoy it so much that she didn't care anything about the friends, she just wanted their drugs. She was lost, her eyes could not see, the drugs had taken complete control of her thoughts, and she now believed that without the drugs, she could not live. She became close to the new set of friends, and it was then she realized just where she was headed. The group she was with called themselves the Crips. They all carried guns, and knives and talked a tough game, but she had never seen them do anything. She began to fall into their trap and was quickly caught, she started wearing all blue, and talking the same slang. She would tell people she was "plugged" or she was "marked". Her life began to do a complete turn around.

She no longer had a loving and compassionate personality. I knew this girl for 20 years. For 20 years she sought out love and acceptance. She never found it at home, and now here she was lost in deceit. She was being abused in the gangs. They would treat her awful, because she was the only woman in the gang, they sexually, mentally, and physically abused her. She was using them for the drugs and they were using her for her body. At one point, they had beaten her and raped her all night long, because she had cried. Her tears brought punishment. No one cried in the gangs. It was a sign of weakness. They had complete control over her. They would urinate on her, and tell her they were "marking their territory." They tried to get her to kill people, but through it all, this young girl survived. She never lost hope that some day she would find real love and acceptance. Some day she would be able to be herself, and still be loved. She stuck around as long as she could, she watched people die, she saw bullets fly past her head, she had been beaten, raped, stabbed, and tormented for so long.

Finally she had, had enough. I knew this girl. I knew her better than anyone else, because I am that girl. I felt the tears she cried, they ran down my face. I felt the abuse she endured, the scars can be seen today. But I am also that same girl who gave her life to Christ! God doesn't allow us to go through so much, just to die. He allows it so we will tell the world of His amazing grace and love that keeps us through the storms of life. I am an amazing grace package, a living testimony. God has never left me nor forsaken me. The valleys I have walked were often dark, the things I have endured were painful, but the lessons I have learned are priceless. God sees us as we can be, and He loves us just as we are. God, in His greatness saw how it would end, before it began.

Many times in my life I had prayed to a God whom I didn't even know. I had never been to a church in my life, until the day I tried to shoot myself in the church parking lot. I sat with a 12 gauge shot gun in my hands, determined to end my life. In a moment, a cop pulled up, and it was at that point I put the barrel of the gun in my mouth. My arms weren't long enough to reach the trigger, so I took my foot and used my toes to pull the trigger. A loaded gun, a fragile body, and an Omnipresent, Omniscient, Omnipotent God, who would win? God prevailed. I pulled the trigger, and no pain.

When the cop grabbed the gun, the bullet slowly rolled down the barrel of the gun, as if it had been stopped. God's finger of love had been placed over the barrel of the gun. God saw all of this, He knew I was going to mess up. He also knew that He was going to clean me up. God doesn't see us as the world sees us. He sees what He can do with us. The world may have seen me as a reject, a menace to society, but God sees me as His child, a tool to reach those whom society has given up on. God receives glory when he takes a person who is known as "a worthless cause" and He places greatness in them. That greatness is Him, His Spirit. When you are filled with His Spirit, then you can do great things through Him. It is people like that, that bring God glory, because others can't help but believe in God. They see this changed person, and they know that only God could have done such a marvelous thing. Only God can transform and change people for the good.

During this journey, I found many things that were disguised as love and acceptance. But the day I said, "yes Lord." I found real love. When I found real love, I found acceptance. It wasn't a day I had planned, when I give my life to Christ, it just happened! I sat on the front pew of a small church tucked back in the trees, and it was there I opened the doors of my heart to Jesus Christ. I had just moved back to my Dad's house. I left the gangs and drugs behind, and I came home. I had been home only a week, and it seemed like things were worse at home then back in the gangs. I had wanted to get high, but couldn't, wanted to go party, but couldn't. Then to make things worse, I was forced to get up and go to church! The pastor preached a sermon titled, "A nice car with a bad engine." It caught my attention, and it was then that I felt the fences around my heart being torn down. When altar call came, I sat on the pew as still as could be.

The preacher begged, called out to the lost. He said, "there is one more, there is one more." People came up, and he continued to call. I thought, gee someone needs to hurry up and come up here, I am ready to go home. It was at that very moment, I felt a prick and I got up and walked up to the altar. How did I get up here, I gotta go back to my pew! I thought to myself. But the Pastor came straight to me. The hold Satan had on my life was broken that day, and I fell to the ground and cried out to God, and he moved in and cradled my tender soul. He came and cleaned me up, and made me new. In an instant I felt peace that surpasses all understanding, love that was unfailing, and joy that gave me strength! After I got home I threw out all of my drugs, got rid of the guns and knives and then I began to change my wardrobe. I got rid of all of the big, blue clothes, I took out all of the earrings and the nose ring, grew my hair back out and kept it it's natural color, but most importantly, God changed my heart! I am loved, I am accepted, and I belong to God! I must tell the world what God is able to do!
Testimony submitted to the Breadsite. To submit yours click here.