During my upbringing I can remember the arguments of my parents, usually because my of father’s alcohol addiction. This lasted for many years, so I kept to myself and did not burden them with my problems.

When I reached the age of 17 I met my first serious boyfriend. He was perfect in my eyes. As our relationship grew I became aware that he was not just taking drugs, but was addicted.

I wanted to help him give up the drugs but as time went by, it became harder for him to give up his addiction and things gradually got worse.

I loved him, so leaving the relationship did not occur to me. I just lived with him, daily hoping somehow things would change.

The only thing that was to change was my boyfriend’s character. He became a completely different person. Cruel, unkind, violent and filled with anger. The drugs had taken over his life and so the relationship that I hoped would change for the better became very abusive. I lived like this for 5 long years and eventually left, my love for him and my own self esteem in tatters.

I too had changed. From being a relatively confident person I became someone who needed attention desperately. I began wearing provocative clothes to make me feel good. I did not care about anything going on around me, and began to lead a wild life full of hatred and a desire for revenge.

It was during this time that my mother and father began to go to church on and off. My father still struggled with his alcohol addiction but his desire to give up became stronger.

He left Gibraltar to go to a Christian Rehab Center in Birmingham. It was a place that those addicted to drugs, alcohol or whatever could go and learn to live again without their addiction.

After being there for 7 months, my mother and I went to visit him. At that time I was desperately in need of help myself. I felt alone, ashamed and very much unloved. I had used up every idea of fulfilling my own needs and instead of being gratified, all I managed to do was cause myself more pain and suffering. I had even been to a few fortune-tellers to try and hear something good.

When I got to Birmingham I was amazed and touched at how my father had changed. He was sober! There I really felt the presence of God. I was surrounded by people who had done terrible things. There were rapists, murderers, thieves, drug addicts and they were all there, their lives changed, loving, kind and praising God. They seemed to be filled with incredible joy.

These people had done such terrible things yet they were so at peace with both God and themselves. I wanted that peace and joy that they had and God showed me that no matter what I had done, he would forgive me. Jesus had been punished for the things I had done wrong and so I was not condemned by God. I was forgiven.

I came back to Gibraltar with a renewed mind and spirit. I asked God to forgive me for all the things I had done wrong, and I felt the peace of God upon me. The next morning I was filled with joy that I had never experienced before, and I did not feel ashamed of myself anymore. I knew God loved me as I was. When I accepted what Jesus had done for me God completely changed my life.

God has done so much for me since that time and I could go on forever! But if you are interested I am willing to share more of my story with you. Just come and ask me!