When I was three years old my mother found Christ and allowed Him to free her from a life of addiction. She was a great example to who Christ was and what kind of love He had to offer. Growing up I always went to church, prayed, and did daily devotions with my family but never had a real relationship with Him.
At seven years old I got baptized because my Sunday school teacher said if I didn’t want to go to hell I had to get baptized. This dramatically changed my view on the church. When I was 12 years old I started drinking and by 14 it had become a habitual practice of mine. A few years later I discovered pain pills which soon became a normal part of my day.
I always knew God had better plans for me but rather than turn to Him and repent I allowed my pride to take me down the path of destruction. I was able to hide my addiction from my family, which just added to the guilt I felt and lead to much harder things. My life quickly became about raving, partying, and getting high.
But God never stopped loving me. Through divine intervention a woman who l’d never met called me out by name and said God wanted me to go to Calvary Chapel Bible College. It seemed silly to me but I applied anyways. I was accepted into the school and decided I would detox cold turkey when I got there. After arriving at the school I spent two weeks detoxing and crying out to God from my dorm, asking Him to make me into the disciple He wanted me to be no matter what it took. The dean decided to search my room one day and found drugs. I was kicked out immediately and had nowhere to go until one of the interns suggested U-Turn for Christ.
While waiting for someone from U-Turn to pick me up, the dean of men’s intern came outside and told me “This doesn’t change my love for you, because God loves.” It was always apart of God’s plan for me to be at U-Turn, I can’t imagine where I would be if I hadn’t accepted the free gift of grace God had been trying to give me for years. Ephesians 2:8 “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God,”.
Vanessa is now back a the Bible College waiting to see what God has next for her!