I have very happy childhood memories. I had hard-working, Christian parents and my life was blessed. I had every opportunity afforded to me, but I always had a strong sense of unworthiness and inadequacy. I began smoking pot and drinking in my early teenage years to block out those feelings. For a while it worked, but those choices made it easier to compromise and made trying harder drugs much easier.
I married just out of high school and started a family, which did not slow my drug and alcohol use down, it actually fueled it because I had married a man who also had a problem with substance abuse. Things were rocky, but we desperately tried to maintain our home, our jobs and to try and keep our addiction secret behind closed doors. Over the years, I went into several rehabs, detox centers, and even psych wards, none of which helped me. I always ended up returning to the drugs. Multiple incarcerations forced me to take a hard look at my life, but as soon as I got out of jail I was right back at it. By the end of 2016 I was in trouble with the law again. I was angry all the time, and I truly felt like there was no hope for my future. I resigned to thinking this was just the way things were. I was an IV drug addict, I was estranged from my family and I left a trail of damage everywhere I went.
But God opened the door of Adult and Teen Challenge of the Upper Cumberland to me in April 2017 and the changes that have taken place in my life over the last 10 months are abundant. I have found freedom from the anger that had me bound. I wake up with a grateful heart, full of purpose, and a newfound joy that I have never experienced before. Jeremiah 29:13 tells me that I will seek Him and find Him when I search for Him with my whole heart and that is exactly what I have done here at Adult and Teen Challenge. My relationships with all three of my children have been restored in ways I never dreamed possible. I spend time daily talking to God, and the verse I stand on is Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the thoughts I think toward you says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not evil, to give you a hope and a future.” I am not sure of my plans for after graduation from Adult and Teen Challenge, but I do know that God has got something wonderful in store for me. I am excited to see how the Lord uses me to spread the love and hope that I have experienced. God has saved my life through the ministry of Adult and Teen Challenge and for that I am eternally grateful.