Have you ever seen an ad about an abducted child? You know, the ones where the child is smiling and happy and the abductor looks totally lame? Well, I was once on those ads some years ago—as the child abducted.
I was three, innocent and full of hope. My father had told me that we were going to Disneyland when in fact, we were on a plane to the Philippines. For most people, including myself, this is not considered abduction. He is my father, after all. However, as I have gained perspective (think of my mother and the rest of my family here in the States), I decided that the term is appropriate. I was at an age where I could not decide for myself. My father, out of good intentions for me and himself, robbed my mother of her right to raise me.
The good out of this situation was that my mother was free from the physical and verbal abuse that was inflicted on her. I witnessed this as a child, something to be grasped. In a different light, I grew up thinking that abuse was a normal way to be treated. When I was taken to the Philippines, I had to study Tagalog as a part of the school curriculum. With dread, I got a C in that 2nd grade class. I was “disciplined” for it by my father. Years later, the “disciplining” got worse, it sometimes involved knives, needles or broken broomsticks when I was disobedient or “immoral”. Some nights, I could not lie down on my bed because of pain I was experiencing. I wasn’t safe. I needed to get away. I ran away.
I was 16, fresh out of high school, and mad at the world whilst fearing it. I met my mother and my sister and struggled with those relationships as well. I was guarded and faithless. I turned to drugs, alcohol and partying. By the time I was 18, I was deep in depression. I wanted to take my own life and I had no one to turn to.
I met Nash sophomore year in college. With my bitter heart, his exuberating love was a foreign concept. I later learned that it was His love for Christ that gave him the joy that he had. I wanted it for myself. He invited me to church where I learned about Christ and was called into the faith. My heart was made new. Nash and I have been courting for 3 years now and plan to marry when the time is right.
The things I do for Christ is nothing in comparison to what He did for me on that cross. I am convicted by this. It is my resolve, therefore, to give up all I have—literally– and walk the earth proclaiming His gospel. I am selling all my personal belongings and going to India, China and back to the Philippines.
This is the beginning of my story. What is yours?
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