In recent years, I've learned that community is important, and who you let into your circle will have an influence in your life; whether good or bad.

Usually, at the beginning of the year, I take time to reflect, set goals, and focus on a word that I want to grow in for the year. In 2017, I prayed to grow in strength. Little did I know that the situation that would go through was one of the lowest points in my life. 

A couple years ago, I was in an unhealthy relationship for about 7 months which went from amazing in the beginning to terrible and toxic. After the fact, we still dated even though we were not in an official relationship. We were both stuck in this cycle of unhealthy behavior. We did that for about a year until he moved across the country. 

One weekend he came back home because a mutual friend was getting married. This was the first time we saw each other since he moved. It was nostalgic. I promised myself that I would be strong and keep myself accountable to not do anything stupid and go back to that cycle. At the end of the day, I did what I told myself I wasn’t going to do. It was like I knew what I should be doing, yet I still did the opposite.

After what happened, I felt ashamed, damaged, and guilty. It was like seeing myself in a mirror and not recognizing who I became. And it was not the woman I wanted to be, so I sought help. I knew I needed help and couldn’t do it alone. Knowing myself it’s so out of my comfort zone because all my life I always had to do things myself. 

I reached out to someone who I trusted and she helped me every step of the way. She would call me, text me, have dinner with me to make sure I am taking the right steps towards healing and wholeness. If it weren’t for her, I wouldn’t have the strength and courage I have now. She gave me vision and purpose in my life again. 

I haven’t seen or talked to him in a while. It's good because there was constant communication, whether it was intended or not. It helped me focus on the important things in my life, instead of him. It also took a while for me to forgive him for all the damage he had done, during those years. I can say now that I have fully forgiven him and if I were to see him now, I would see him through love. I have never felt free from a bondage that I kept clinging on to.

From this whole experience, I learned that community is important, and who you let into your circle will have an influence in your life; good or bad. So I have been more intentional with who I give my time to because I don’t want to waste my life focusing on the wrong thing that I miss out on a divine opportunity. Our toughest moments can be turned into good, and I hope my story can help someone who is going through the same situation.

How has God changed your life? How has he changed how you see yourself?
We want to hear your story (even if it's still in process) of victory in Christ!