From Suicide and Drugs to Choosing Life in Christ
Nicaragua is a beautiful country of great contrasts, from volcanos and turquoise-blue lakes in historic craters, to warm, friendly people and majestic cathedrals, to heaps of garbage, strewn across the streets with nobody picking it up, to slums and squalor and hopelessness. It is here that more than 10% of young girls are married off by age 15 and over 40% by age 18. Low income and low standards of living, with little hope of escaping to something better, mean that many are just hanging on, just waiting for the sunrise of another day.
Anielka* story is one of pain, brokenness and sadness that brings tears to everyone who hears it.
Anielka was rejected at an early age by her father, who abandoned the family to start a new life in another county. She was later abused by two of her uncles and shares, “They also threatened me that if I exposed them they would do worse things to me.” Anielka began taking drugs at age 13 in her own attempt to escape from a life she hated, but they were no help and finally she tried slitting her wrists multiple times. “I thought that if I could just end my life everything would be ok. But it didn’t work, I tried again and again (as she shows the scars that litter her wrists like painful reminders). I also started dealing in drugs, because my boyfriend said this would be helpful to pay for my own drugs. I finally moved out and went to stay at my boyfriend’s house.”
“Soon after I arrived I was sitting in the lounge and something or someone inside me just said, ‘this is not the life I had planned for you, Anielka’. Right then, my aunt arrived at the house. She told me that she was taking me back to my mother’s house and that she had enrolled me in Emmaus School and she was going to pay the school fees (public schooling is free in Nicaragua, but Emmaus was a private school). Strangely, I just went with her, without a fight. This was my family’s last resort to ‘save’ me!”
“The day after I arrived at Emmaus School they started the ‘Choose Life’ program from Bible League. I couldn’t believe that anything could change my life, I wasn’t even wanting to live, but God has changed my life, in just a few months! Jesus has set me free, set me free from my drugs, set me free from my depression, set me free from my pain and hurt, set me free from my anger and resentment and unforgiveness! God has restored me and restored my family too, I cannot believe what God has done for me, only a miracle, that is all I can say!” An excited Anielka smiles and shares that her prayer for her future is to one day get married and have a Christian husband and Christian family, who all worship God together!
* Name changed to protect identity
A Transformational Gift of Immeasurable Impact
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