Chapter 2: Stepping Out in Faith
It was October 2015, when Jai and I had our last fight. One that I wasn’t sure what would happen next. I remember throwing his phone on the tile floor hoping it would shatter. I remember pulling the clothes from the closet and yelling for him to leave and trying to calm Oreo down because she was trying to protect me. All this because he couldn’t for the life of him be faithful.
For the next couple months, I had to adjust to living alone again. I had to get use to coming home and taking care of Oreo while managing a household on my own. I am not going to lie, I struggled because bad enough the break up was bad but I was angry and resentful. I can’t tell you what really happened from October 2015 to July 2016. It was a complete blur to me and when people ask me about that time period of my life, I really don’t remember.
I remember coming across a video someone shared on Facebook of someone called Steven Furtick. At that time, I did not know he was a Pastor and He spoke about being in your darkest moment, hitting rock bottom and God being the rock at the bottom, proving his faithfulness. Oddly enough a week before I saw this video, Jai showed up at my apartment to talk. He knew I wasn’t okay and asked me where my weapon was. Did I plan to taking my life ? No, but I did think about how things would go if I wasn’t in the picture. I am not an emotional person nor do I like talking about my feelings... so the idea of telling anyone about how I felt was not at the top of my priority list. I never told anyone about his drug use or the abuse... I told myself this was my life forever and I was going to have to deal with it. I remember the day he was at my apartment we argued because I wouldn’t tell him where it was. He searched the entire bedroom until he found it. He stored it in my lockbox, locked box and took the keys with him. It wasn’t until January of 2017 that he gave me back the keys.
July 2016, I explored more about Pastor Steven and Elevation Church. I downloaded all his sermons on the app and listened to them to and from NY. I remember joking to my mom that I was running out of data because I would listen to two or three sermons in one trip. I remember listening and crying my eyes out because I didn’t understand. That relationship ended badly and affected me in more ways than I’d like to admit... how was I ever going to bounce back from this? I remember finding out that they lived streamed their sermons on Sunday and watching. I can’t remember what sermon Pastor Steven was preaching but I remember making the decision to give my life to Christ. I didn’t understand but I made the decision to raise my hand.. I remember sending an email to Pastor Chad who is our online Campus Pastor wanting to get involved. I knew that I wasn’t the only person going through the same struggles... I needed guidance! Who would want me after this? How will I be able to date and not continue being resentful? I needed to forgive but I didn’t know how.
Things changed after that day. I began chat hosting on elevationchurch.online and got to meet some amazing people around the world. That platform soon grew to YT and Facebook where we now stream for all worship experience.
Life shifted months following my decision, I met some amazing people on my commute and encountered someone who I never thought I would. Little did I know that months later, this person and I would be communicating in a way that I didn’t think would happen. I will leave this story for another chapter but it’s funny to be typing this blog post and thinking about where I was and Where I am now.
Stepping out in faith isn’t easy. I didn’t expect that almost a year later, I would stumble... things were just not going the way I expected. Friendships were ending, my photography wasn’t blossoming and I tried dating and immediately knew that dating was not going to be for me in 2017. I shut down completely, I spent months in full shutdown mode. If you know me personally, shut down mode isn’t good. I completely tune everyone out and go radio silent. I had so many people get mad at me because of this and truthfully I didn’t care.. still don’t honestly. I couldn’t catch a break, Mom got sick and someone broke into my apartment while I was at work and stole my laptop and cameras. Can you imagine how I felt coming home to a trashed apartment? Realizing that ALL my essential personal items were missing and someone had actually gone through my personal drawers?.... It didn’t help that two weeks before this I spent my birthday crying on the steps of Penn’s Landing alone.
I can tell you... every time something happened, I got upset. I didn’t understand why I couldn’t catch one break and I remember getting mad at God because of it. It wasnt until I had a conversation with someone who said.. things could of been worse.. and he was right. I survived a lot of things in the last nine years of my life. My life has a purpose and God isn’t finished with me yet. I may not understand why I have had to experience the things I did but maybe it was for me to share my story. Someone may be experiencing a similar situation as I did and I can tell you with certainty that it gets better.... you HAVE to make the decision to change how you respond to your circumstances. I continue to be a work in progress with my faith but I came into 2018 seeking restoration. God is faithful even if I don’t understand his plan for me... my steps are ordered and it’s my responsibility to walk in full purpose. I may not like the road I am on but there is a reason and I have to just TRUST.
I recommend you listen to Pastor Steven’s sermon from New Year’s Eve... You will not be disappointed.
Step out in faith... I promise you will not regret it.