I didn’t grow up in the Church and didn’t even like Christians. Jesus was something I heard, but not someone I experienced. I thought church was boring and those who went to church were even more boring. I didn’t become a Christian till I was 19 years-old. The reason I took so long to become a Christian was because of my pain. However, my pain didn’t lead me to think that a good God couldn’t exist, but instead I couldn’t think of anything other than getting through my pain and working at trying to fix my pain. God just didn’t come up in my thoughts. Now, lets get to the heart of my pain: my parent’s divorce.
My parent’s divorce shattered my life. I never remember a time when
my parents were married nor a time when they even liked each other. All I can remember is yelling, and more yelling. After an ugly court battle, my dad disappeared for 9 years and stopped communication with my brothers and I. I always wanted a strong relationship with my dad that would encourage me when I was discouraged, strengthen me when I was weak, and give me hope when I felt hopeless. I wanted that “hallmark dad moment” every day, yet those days never came. I went from having two parents to having only one.
My mom tried her best at being a single mom of three kids, but as time went on our lives fell apart. My brothers and I were abruptly forced to leave my mom, since she had developed a meth addiction. Finding out that my mom was a meth addict added even more devastation to my already fragile sense of my place in this world. I went to live with my grandparents.
Everyday was filled with heartache and disappointment. I hated what my life had become. Anger took my dad away, and now drugs took my mom away. I felt that people did nothing but hurt me, so I was done with people. I learned to not trust people. Walls went up in my life and no one was allowed in. Forget the pain, forget the people.
It was at my grandparent’s house where I truly isolated myself from the world. My time was occupied by playing video games and watching television. Oddly enough, I enjoyed being away from people, since I could control all aspects of my room. I could control who came in, who went out, what I did, what I didn’t do, and when all this happened. People caused pain, so no people were allowed in my room.
I felt no pain and I loved it. However, outside my room was where pain was possible, since I couldn’t control people like I could control them in a video game. Therefore, I never left my room. I never hung out with friends nor attended parties or dances, including my senior prom.
I had enjoyed being alone and pain-free, but things started changing during my junior year of high school. My loneliness and silence soon changed from a blessing into a burden. I started hating being alone every day, every week, every month, and every year. I remember wanting things to be different, but I didn’t have the social skills to fix my problem: being friendless. I tried becoming more social, but only improved minimally. I graduated high school and continued through my first two years of college still without any friends. My pain continued and I still had no support system to rely on. My family tried to be my support system, but I still wasn’t willing to allow any of them in my life.
As I was trying to figure out how to fix my life, the most traumatic event of my life was about to happen. I received an email from my mom, which would forever change my life. This email, although small, packed massive pain, even more than my parent’s divorce. This email was sent to my brothers and I. It was my mom’s suicide note. She said goodbye to each of us, told us how much she loved us, and to take care of each other. Everything stopped.
Time stood still and my heart seem to stop beating,too. I had no appetite, no emotion, no thought process, no strength, since I had no longer had my mom. I had seen her just days before and now she was gone. I didn’t think this could be real. Truth be told, I didn’t know what to think. I just couldn’t process what was happening. Thankfully and by the grace of God, my mom didn’t die that day. She had attempted to overdose on prescription pills, but Jesus wasn’t going to allow my mom’s life to end. Jesus had more chapters for my mom to live out. However, I went from attempting to process my mom’s suicide to then soon finding out that they had pumped her stomach and she was now in critical care.
Was I supposed to feel sorry for her? How could I feel anything for her, when I didn’t feel anything at all? This only made my head spin even more. I was overjoyed that she was alive, yet inflamed with anger that she would do this to us. How could she want to leave me? Wasn’t I important enough for her to stay here? Everything was happening so fast. Within a 24 hour span, my mom suddenly took her own life and then shockingly was alive in critical care. I felt alone and insignificant. Once again, people had hurt me and immense pain consumed me. Into my room I went.
I was crippled by my pain and I had no one to lean on. I remember thinking negative thoughts, yet, for the first time, I actually had the desire to talk with Jesus. I was fed up with doing life alone and I needed someone badly to help me. Earlier in my youth, I had been baptized, but I only did it to please my family. I didn’t do it for Jesus, nor did I ever care about Jesus. I never gave Jesus a chance, but my mom’s suicide note led me to finally give Jesus a chance. That note showed me my hopeless and helpless situation. For the first time, I saw I needed help. I knew Jesus had changed countless people’s lives and showed a extravagant love to everyone. I wanted a new life, but I wanted His love more than anything. I thought that people could fail me, but Jesus wouldn’t fail me.
I started going to church with an eager spirit and a willing heart. The Church I hated most transformed into the Church I loved most. I never wanted to leave church. I loved how everyone showed me so much love and encouragement. This caused things to change in my life. I started to finally give God a chance and in return God gave me a new life. Most of all, I constantly felt the love Jesus had for me. His love changed my life. I accepted Jesus into my heart and got baptized on October 12, 2008. I was forever changed. A new Jordan was born.
I never had a high view of myself. Since it felt like everyone left me, I felt like I wasn’t worth much. I didn’t like anything about myself, but Jesus changed that. I started building up my confidence the more I learned about Jesus. For the first time, I was confident. My confidence was everlasting, since it was rooted in the Everlasting. My confidence wasn’t rooted in myself, but rather in my Savor. Jesus was my confidence. I also started being more joyful. I used to be bitter all the time and hate everyone, but now I starting being randomly happy and loving everyone. Why? The love of Jesus never went away. He was always good to me, even when I was bad to Him. I could have bad days, but I always had a good God.
An added bonus to becoming a Christian was my school work drastically improved. In 6th grade, I had a 0.9 GPA. This year was full of pain, which caused me to not care about school. Home life was so hard that I didn’t focus on anything other than trying to get through my torment. After becoming a Christian, school became actually fun. My 1st semester as a Christian I earned a 3.3 GPA (highest I had ever got), my 2nd semester I earned a 3.47 GPA, and my 3rd semester I earned a 3.56 GPA. Jesus sparked a thirst within me to learn all I can about the world He created. The little kid who hated the world and failed all his classes is now attending graduate school and loves life. This God of ours truly changes people. I am what I am because of Jesus.
The last thing about me that changed was I started making friends. The once timid and shy Jordan transformed into a extroverted and fearless Jordan. I wasn’t afraid to meet new people anymore. I started becoming more social and soon I had the ability to talk to anyone, including random people on the street. I felt like God gave me my voice. I still met some people who were bitter and full of hate, but I didn’t allow that to hurt me, since I knew they were only showing hate to me, since they were experiencing some sort of pain in their life. I had been there, so I showed love to them. The love of Jesus in my heart was greater than any hate that someone could show me. I wasn’t going to be shaken, since God was holding me. He would never let go of me.
Jesus changed everything about my life, so I’m giving my life back to Him. Whenever I tell someone my testimony, they feel bad that I received a suicide note from my mom. However, I always tell them that the greatest gift I have ever received was that suicide note, since it led me to Jesus. That note broke my heart, yet God entered through the cracks of my heart. Therefore, that note was a good thing. What Satan intended for bad, God intended it for good. Also, my mom is alive, well, and now a testament that God restores and heals people. My mom is using her life to bring glory to Jesus by helping others who battle addictions or depression. She gives hope to hopeless. My mom is my hero. I actually wasn’t planning on sharing my mom’s meth addiction or her suicide note, since these don’t represent the mother I know and love. She isn’t what she used to be. However, my mom actually wanted me to share these painful truths from her past, so that others would be encouraged and comforted in their pain. My mom was knocked down by satan, but she victoriously rose by Jesus. Yet again, my mom is my hero.
God has shown me that most of us hide from our pain. We either isolate ourselves, ignore the pain, use drugs and alcohol, or even try to end our lives. However, the only way through our pain is through our Jesus. He walks with us, even when we walk in the wrong direction. He never leaves us, even when we kick and scream. He looks over us, even when we look past Him. He loves us, even when we hate Him. The greatest medication isn’t found in a pill, but rather in our God. Jesus is the antidote for our pain.
This voice Jesus gave me will forever speak about Jesus and the Gospel.