By Sharon Young
My life before The Grace House was a drunken blur. I stayed drunk ALL the time. I couldn’t keep a job and was useless to everyone especially the ones I cared the most about, my family. I have done all sorts of drugs, including I.V. drugs which is how I got Hepatitis C., a virus that causes liver disease. I went in and out of detox center and rehab two times. My drinking finally got up to at the least half a gallon of liquor or more a day. I got two D.W.I.’s & lots of P.I.’s—too many to count. I had gotten to the point if I didn’t drink, I got sick and could not eat or brush my teeth without it. Then I started feeling bad even when I was drinking. Everyone just thought I was still drinking and lying saying I was not. I lost all control of my body functions, had to be cleaned up, redressed put in the bed. My body was swelling unknown to me.
My mother had called and called from out of town to check on me until she finally got an answer. The person whom I stayed with told my mother that I needed to go to a nursing home or somewhere; he could not take care of me anymore. So she called my sister, Linda to go check on me. By that time it was getting late. Linda and her son come to check on me that evening after 9 p.m. and she does not normally leave the house that late. This had to be an act of God. Linda took one look at me and said she wanted to take me to the emergency room. I didn’t think I needed to go and thought I would be ok the next morning. She said I was GOING! It took them all to put me into Samuel’s truck and then they drove me to the ER in Fairfield. It took the hospital two and a half weeks to get me stable enough to be released. The doctors let me know that my liver had shut down and that they don’t know how I was still alive.
Linda’s daughter Sarah lived in Waco at that time; she was a member of Antioch Community Church. Sarah had a friend she met at Life Group that had volunteered at Grace House and told her how much they helped people in recovery. So Sarah told her mom and Linda told our mom. This was the second time that they had tried to get me to go to the Grace House. The doctor called and talked to someone, probably Missy. She agreed to interview me. I said “no” at first, but my mother put it to me strongly that there were no more chances left for me. It’s like God was not taking a “no” for the answer. Momma called Missy or Lynsey back and let me get on the phone to say I wanted help. I was then taken to the interview at the church office. Lynsey & Frances interviewed me and said for me to wait up front with my family. Lynsey told me that they prayed about it and felt that God said “yes”. We were told to come back in four days. That day Lynsey met us in front or church office, she took my bag and said to tell them by. Then she took me to the Grace House, helped in to the house and they prayed for me and helped me up stairs. I was still very ill at this time. Most of the first three weeks, I was up stairs. Someone was with me any time I was awake, brought my food and drinks to me, prayed for me a lot. I was in and out of hospital. I don’t think they knew if I was going to make it or not. They kept praying for me and being so thoughtful and kind to me. They helped me get up and down the steps—you name it, they did it.
I had lots of challenges with my health. Giving up my own control of life was not an easy thing to do after 52 years of living life my way, which did not work so well. I learned to trust in the Lord and patience was a big one for me. Through the Grace House I am alive and have hope in what is ahead. I could not have done this without the renewal of my whole being. God has done a lot of healing in my body and soul. He took spots out of my liver that the doctor said could not just disappear and did. It was only by the Lord’s healing grace. I haven’t even been in the hospital but once recently. I cannot thank all the people enough for all they have invested in me. I look forward to starting my life with God guiding me. He has blessed me more than I can ever say.
Thank you Missy, Frances, Lynsey, Beth, Shellie, Sonya, Tara, All of Antioch Community Church, THE GRACE HOUSE, and my family. Thank you for not giving up on me. Most of all, I praise and thank God the ALMIGHTY for his abundant mercy and grace in my life.