My name is Marie and I am 25 years old. I have been struggling with my addiction to alcohol for the past seven years. I grew up in a Christian home with parents who were in full time ministry. I went to youth group and on missions trips, but I felt my faith was not my own. I remember telling myself that I needed to go out and experience the world for a bit and then I would come back to God.
At the age of 18, I moved out of my parent’s house and I moved in with my boyfriend. I worked as a cocktail waitress and my taste and thirst for alcohol grew strong very quickly. My boyfriend became abusive and after four months I moved back to my parent’s home. I experienced depression following the move. I really hated myself. I believed God existed, but I didn’t believe He loved me or that I was worthy to be loved.
Shortly after, I entered another two year relationship, smoked, experimented with drugs, and regularly used cocaine. One night after an angry phone call with my boyfriend, I took a bunch of pain pills and drank a pint of rum. I was babysitting the neighbor’s daughter and was found when the girl’s mother came home. The next day my parents sent me to a week of intensive Christian therapy. I came home very remorseful but still very depressed. I had experienced a brief flicker of hope in having a relationship with Jesus Christ, but without fanning that flame, that fire quickly went out. I remained aware of God and my need for Him intellectually, but was spiritually dead.
For the next couple of years, I was in and out of school, different jobs and relationships. I continued to drink and became dependent upon prescription pills. I tried to establish myself by once again moving out of my parent’s home to a new town and job. Living on my own brought my drinking to new heights. I drank daily and would frequently black out. I eventually lost my job and my apartment and moved back with my family.
My mom convinced me one afternoon to visit the Walter Hoving Home and we drove up to see it. But, I was still in denial about my problem and I vowed I would never be sent away, so we drove home. Over the next six months my drinking, again had steadily increased and I very slowly began to accept my need for change. My heart softened towards God and I agreed to come to the Walter Hoving Home.
When I entered the Walter Hoving Home I was ready to meet God. He has continued to open my heart to Him as I am learning to honestly worship Him for who He is. I am so sure that He has a plan for my life. I am free of anxiety, depression and addiction. It is so good to be living within His will for me as I am experiencing freedom and joy.
Romans 8:15: This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, papa?”
I am excited to be an Associate Staff at the ministry and it will be a blessing to give back to the ministry that was used to change my life through Christ.