She’s Chosen: Called Out of the Mud & Mire of Addiction
The mud & mire of trauma, abuse and addiction tried to pull her down, but but she reached out her hand and came up for just long enough to grab hold of Him.
Abuse and addictions thought they had hold of her…But God! Andrea shares her testimony in such an open and honest way. Her testimony is proof of how God can heal lifelong hurt and abuse. Abuse that’s desperately covered by more abuse, and when that fails, then maybe drugs can drown out the pain. She shares her past so openly because to tell of God’s mighty power and fierce love, she must first share the pain and brokenness He redeemed her from. The mud & mire is where God willinging went to pull her up from. He set her on His firm foundation. Oh how He loves her so, and gratefully, she’s sharing with us just how far He’s willing to go to save His children.
·♥· Psalm 40:2 He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand ·♥·
A Broken Beginning: Abuse, Bullying & Purging
My name is Andrea. I am a 24 year old single mother of two boys. Yes two boys, Irish twins at that. I know I’m crazy right?! Well you don’t know the half of it. Buckle in, because before I knew the Lord my life was filled with so many speed bumps and so many dead ends it almost seemed that I would never be here at this moment today.
Goodness, thinking back to the way I was living, I wasn’t sure I was going to be alive the next day. As a young child I experienced years of trauma. Years of abuse from sexual, to emotional. I lived in a household that you had to paint a picture that everything was perfect. All about cleaning up the outside to make sure no one saw the terrible insides. That mentality carried over through the years of my life.
After a few years of experiencing severe sexual trauma, all while being bullied at school and being abused at home I hit an all-time low. I was about 10. I wanted to die. Not the on the surface “she craving attention” type of feeling. But no, a real bottled up emotion that the world would be better off without me in it. That spiraled into an eating disorder where for the first time, through purging, I felt as though I had some sort of control. That’s the moment I first felt the feeling (FALSE feeling I may add) that I had it all together.
The Mire of Addiction & A Mustard Seed
I would soon be brought back to reality, and reminded that the situation of abuse was still present. This carried over for years, in fact finally leaving that at the altar is still extremely new for me. I do believe though that it was my first taste of addiction and my addictive behaviors, because three short years later I tried my first drink, and smoked my first puff. And I can tell you from the first time alcohol touched my lips and drugs hit my veins I was completely hooked. It was then that life became unmanageable, it was then the need for more came. From there, the years become a blur. Everything and anything I did revolved around getting the next high…and no one was safe. Everyone who was not helping me, was against me. Thinking back to it I just know that I was trying to fill this gaping hole of hurt with things of this world.
Men, drugs, attention, appearance, you name it. I was the worst of the worst, because I had absolutely no morels. These years were very dark. It was there though, that I began to realize my need for a savior. See here’s the thing I didn’t explain thus far, my mom was early in the process of beginning to seek the Lord…and wrestling. Unfortunately, the results of sin harms everyone. Because of the life lived behind closed doors, I suffered tremendously and deeply. But
a seed was planted. It was during these years I began to cry out, usually of course when I was withdrawing, but the realization that a savior was needed in my life was during those moments.
The Mud, The Men, The Military
Moving forward to my junior year in high school, completely addicted, having no standard for myself and regrettably having the ugliest relationships with men (yes I said men, older). I became terrorized and found myself sexually abused yet again. So I decided the best thing to do was join the military. Run. I was always good at that. I detoxed on my floor, set my mind straight, and two weeks after I graduated high school I was shipped off. I finished my training and for once I felt like things were looking up. I got stationed in Germany at this point, and it was there that I realized you can’t move away from addiction because it will follow you. I began drinking heavily, immediately. I began seeking attention from men, immediately. And it was there that I met my ex husband. My “captain save me”, always as drunk as me, bad boy. Within 3 months I became pregnant, and I cannot begin to tell you the emotions I went through. But what I can say, is that it’s what the Lord used to save my life. Truly. I was able to sober up for the pregnancy, and moved back to the states to be stationed in Colorado.
6 weeks after I had my first son, I became pregnant again with my second. During my pregnancies their father and I got married…over my lunch break. Yes, you heard me correct ladies and gents! On my lunch break we signed the papers and viola, we were married. It was just then that I realized how badly of a mistake I had made by rushing and getting married. Within two weeks of tying the knot he cheated on me and 3 months before, he hit me for the first time. This cycle would continue for the next few years.
BUT GOD! A week after I left him and moved away, I went to church, fell on my knees and prayed for deliverance. I received this beautiful gift of grace that day. So when I say BUT GOD I mean that. Because when God stepped in my life everything, and I mean everything changed. The day I got saved was the last day I touched a hard drug (ALL GLORY TO GOD!) Shortly after, I stopped drinking. Soon after that, I stopped looking to men to fill voids ONLY THE LORD could fill. Now I’m not saying it was easy. Because boy have there been bumps. But HE’s always been there holding my hand. HE is so careful and gracious with me. HE taught me to be a mother. HE taught me to love myself like HE loves me. What I learned was without HIM in a wreck, but with HIM I’m HIS beautiful masterpiece. Yes, a little broken (nothing too hard for HIM to fix). Yeah, I got some dents (HE can fix those too). HE’s polished me up and now I shine, not the outside, that’s far from it, but the inside because it’s HIM who shines in me!
What do you think held you in place where you were? What anchored you to the life you used to
The life I used to have was anchored in misplaced worship. The worship of the things of this world. Drugs, Alcohol, Men.
What was the hardest thing for you to let go off?
Oh boy, this is a tough because I thought it would be the drugs but it wasn’t the hardest thing to let go of for me was my own self-hate. My own need to put myself down.
Can you share a memory of the event, or person that first began to change your heart / mind towards Christ?
I remember just being so broken, so at a loss, just mentally and physically exhausted with the weight of what the trauma in my past and the havoc I created as a result had caused that I just cried out to the Lord. I remember reading 1 Corinthians 13 about HIS perfect love and feeling like I wanted someone to love me like that. It was in that moment I felt, out of the blue, something saying to me “Let me love you” and that night struggling with what that meant. I fell to my knees and said “alright Lord I don’t know how to let anyone love me, heck I don’t even love (not even like) myself” it was there on my knees where I felt HIS amazing love. I felt that peace. You know, the one that surpasses understanding. It was there where I heard from HIM.
What’s something the new you would tell the old you?
Oh boy, I think I would tell the old me to let go. To allow myself to be forgiven, and to forgive. To
stop trying to be loved, because I already am. To stop filling the holes with things, and to be
filled with HIM.
What’s something you’ve learned from your past life that you will use or remember as you
continue to grow?
Something I learned early on is disappointment in putting expectations in others. Because the reality is that we live in a fallen world and that when there’s expectation in anything but the Lord, you will most likely be disappointed. So I use that as a reminder to only put my expectations in the Lord. And to not get hurt when someone disappoints me.
What are some goals you’re currently stretching towards?
Growing in the Lord is first and foremost. Growing as a more godly mother and godly woman. Lastly would be growing in the ministry the Lord has me in. The Lord has given me an opportunity to share Christ’s love with children, some who are going through so many similar things I went through. The Lord has given me the opportunity to guide them, and prayerfully, they won’t take the same course I did.
Much love, tons of giggles & continued grace,