I was born in Ethiopia, but my birthmother wasn’t able to take care of me. So I spent the first three years of my life in an orphanage there.
Then, I was adopted. The first family that adopted me went to church. The church they attended made it sound like trusting Jesus was easy. When I pushed that family away, they didn’t love me enough to keep me, and they gave up on me. And so, when I was nine years old, I ended up being adopted again. After that, I decided I wouldn’t trust people again. It seemed like people who said they loved Jesus still give up on you and throw you away when things got rough.
And so I ended up in a new family here. When I first went to Sojourn, it seemed like the Bible must be a fairy-tale book, but I didn’t think it was true. But when my new parents talked about Jesus, it seemed like Jesus was a real person.
I assumed that, after a while, this family would put me up for adoption again. I assumed everyone here would give up on me eventually, because that’s what everyone else had always done. So I tried to push my family away, and I was angry a lot and I thought my life was worthless. I thought it was just a coincidence that I was in a caring family and a loving church.
After a while I became interested in the Bible and started to ask questions. I took the Family Baptism Classes at church. That’s when there was a small sense of spiritual realization that I needed to be saved. But I loved other things more. For a long time, I hid that feeling of spiritual realization. But then I started to see I needed Jesus and there was an empty part of my heart that only Jesus could fill.
That’s when I realized, as I thought about my past, that there had been someone watching me and looking out for me my whole life.
I met with Miss Rochelle, and we talked about the Gospel. I realized that God had so much love that he created us even though he already knew that we would sin and ruin his perfectly made world. When Miss Rochelle said that trusting Jesus is the foundation for believers, I felt like my decision not to trust anyone faded a little bit. I told her the reason why I never felt like I could really trust anyone with my whole heart: I was afraid to trust anyone because, even when you trust people, they disappoint you and give up on you. She said that even a tiny mustard seed of faith can go a long ways and it grows.
A few days later, I was thinking about that and I confessed that Jesus is Lord and I trusted with my whole heart that God raised him from the dead. Now, I know that knowing God and obeying him brings a joy-filled life. Now, I try to help without trying to earn people’s approval. Sometimes, I am tempted to envy others and I am quick to speak and quick to anger. But I repent and ask for forgiveness.
What changed most in me is that, even when I feel alone, I know that my heavenly Father is with me and loves me more than I ever imagined. Now, I want to serve here at Sojourn and to tell other people about God’s amazing love.