My name is Steph and I used to like to look for trouble. I was rebellious and didn’t want anyone telling me what to do. However, the things I did and the desires I had were very destructive. I used to lie, steal, get drunk, smoke crack and other drugs, and sleep around. I did those things because I got a thrill out of being bad and I was empty inside. I was also looking for attention, even if it was the wrong kind of attention. I was violent and depressed when my selfish plans were threatened and I would use people when and wherever I would benefit. I quit school at 13 because I was lazy and wanted to have fun without any boundaries or restrictions on my life. I didn’t even realize I was a slave to my sin and the freedom I thought I had was all a lie. I spent most of my teen years in rehabs, mental institutions, parties, and shacking up. I was looking to men for father figures and ended up in some pretty sick relationships with older guys. Before long, I was involved in things I’m even too ashamed to speak of now and I swore I would never do. I always went further than I originally thought I would.
When I was 17, I heard the gospel and believed, but I refused to repent. So I continued on my destructive path. By the time I was 20, I was so scarred by my past and had no hope for the future. I had nothing left and I wanted to die. I was desperate. I knew God was the only answer and I needed to stop running from the only one who really loved me. So I finally surrendered to God and began to obey Him. He brought me back to Pennsylvania from Texas and added me to the Potter’s House in Upper Darby. He set me free from all my habits and my insane lifestyle. Somehow I survived all those years without getting AIDS. That was a miracle.
God has redeemed the life that I ruined. I am now happily married to a wonderful, saved man and have three beautiful kids who are being raised in church and in a stable home. This is something I never had and never could have provided. God continues to set me free from my wrong ways of thinking and is teaching me how His kingdom works. I am learning to function as a wife and a mom as God intended. I never want to forget where I came from so I can keep the gratitude and awe I have for the power that is in Jesus and so others can have hope because of what God has done in my life.