I was raised in Atlanta, Georgia and I actually don’t have much of an accent : ) My parents divorced when I was around six years old and my mom remarried a couple years afterward so I have lived the stepchild reality and my experience wasn’t ideal by any means. I have an older sister from my mom’s first marriage with my dad and two half sisters. Once my older sister left for college, I felt out of place as my mom and her new husband started their own family. My experience has really given me a heart full of compassion for blended families and the dynamics that step kids face. My dad remarried as well and my step mom and I have a great relationship to this day.
I wasn’t raised in a Christian home so the values I now believe are critical for stability in a family were not present. As a wounded girl who felt the pain of her family being torn apart from divorce in a home where Jesus wasn’t at the center of our family, I didn’t feel like I belonged. In the vacuum of being parented in my formative years I felt like a majority of the time I raised myself.
I remember accepting Jesus when I was visiting my dad for Christmas around 9 years old. My grandmother was there and lead me in a prayer. She went to a Pentecostal church in the faith movement so my introduction to church wasn’t very calm and collective. As a teenager I went to Young Life and occasionally went to a local Baptist church. I always felt safe being in a Christian environment even though I wasn’t pursuing my relationship with Jesus. I really didn’t know how.
My real and personal relationship began at 27 when I went through a really hard season in my life. At that point, I really needed Jesus for the first time and God was so gracious to have me in a loving local Church of God. This is when I really began a personal relationship with Jesus. A few years later I married and we had a beautiful daughter together. After several years of being happily married and pursuing God, my marriage began to unravel. I fought for it with all my heart but it ultimately ended in a very painful divorce. I really didn’t want my daughter to grow up in a broken home as I did. I was heart broken and found myself in a devastated place as a single mom. God again was so gracious to set me up in another amazing supernatural church pastored by Johnny & Elizabeth Enlow. This would become my home church for the next 6 years. They took us in as family and I even began working on staff. I began operating in all the gifts of the Spirit and eventually was ordained as a minister on senior leadership. That was never on my radar to be a pastor….who me?
It was still in my heart to be married, but I handed that all over to God. I needed to stay out of that and let Him be the one to work that out on my behalf. He told me that He would bring my husband to the church. I simply focused on Him, being a good mom, and trusting Jesus for all my heart’s desires and His promises. Six years later, voila, the man of my dreams walked into our church! Praise GOD!!!
I can’t encourage people enough today to wait for God’s best and to invite Him into the process of courtship and marriage. His ways are always better than!
Today I’m the mom of three wonderful teenagers . . . technically two of them are my step children, but I don’t think of them like that. I’m so blessed that God would trust me with getting to parent these very special kids that He loves so dearly. Henry and I believe that family is the foundation where you build from and with this firm foundation in God, the possibilities are endless.
I look forward to joining you in your journey with God and your family and seeing you reach mountain top heights in all that is before you.
Love always Wins!!!