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I have been trying to recover from drug addiction and alcoholism since 1999. It has been a long, degrading and painful journey and I have hurt many people, broken many laws, been to prison twice, been to three psychiatric units and overdosed more times than I can remember. As I write, I can’t believe I’m still here.
I was introduced to the AA fellowship which works a spiritual programme of recovery, advising you to hand your will and life over to the care of a “God of your own understanding”. I did try this and, aware of the spiritual part of my make-up, tried yoga, tai chi, meditating with acupuncture etc, but nothing cut the mustard. I didn’t know who I was praying to. Forgive me Father, but I really did not want Jesus to be my answer. My Mum is a Christian and took me to a Methodist church as a teenager, but I was not interested. I now believe I couldn’t handle the TRUTH.
To cut a very long story short, I was admitted to a Psychiatric Unit in March of this year, where I attempted suicide. The very next day, an AA friend of mine offered to visit. He is also a Christian. He explained to me in ABC terms what Jesus had done for me. He explained that God couldn’t love me more even if I tried and that He had sent his only Son to die on the cross and take my sins with Him. Even if I was the only person on the earth, He would’ve done that for ME. So, that day, I said what’s called the Sinner’s Prayer, which is a simple prayer about having a fresh start with God, and gave my life to the Lord. I now have a Father, which I’ve never had before. My Abba, my Papa.
I read in the AA Big Book (which all points to Christ by the way) that “God is EVERYTHING, else he is nothing” – what was my choice to be? Well, I want Him to be my everything. I want to die to self and offer myself as a living sacrifice to Him. After all, that IS what He wants, isn’t it?
Since becoming a Christian, God has already done great works in me. Before, when I got up in the morning, I would be grumpy, depressed, anxious and put the TV on just to distract me from my negative thoughts and feelings. Since turning my life over to God, the first thing I do is say ‘Good Morning’ to my heavenly Father, so immediately I don’t feel alone. God has removed the desire to watch TV and instead I listen to Testimonies on the net. I no longer read nonsense magazines about fashion and other people’s miserable lives, instead I read the Bible or AA literature. This thirst for Jesus has only come from God. I have very few “friends” now, but the ones I have I cherish. My family think I’m losing the plot again, but hopefully I can be a testimony to them too (that’s my wish, God willing). I still have temptations in life, but the Bible has taught me that it won’t be more than I can bear and He will always provide a way out. I just have to take it. And, if I do stumble, my heavenly Father will help me back up again, wipe away my tears and hold my hand as I limp beside Him.
I haven’t been at the Church long but people have been very kind to me. I went to a worship evening, to the Pentecost celebrations in Borough Gardens, and I’ve been to the Wednesday morning coffee pop-in.
I am being baptised purely because it is biblical. I have repented and so now I am being baptised. I long to feel the closeness of God in my heart but, as with any relationship, I must put in the effort.
Listen… In Anna’s Words.
Anna – June 2015