under Secret Stories on June 16, 2011

My (birth) name is ____________, I currently live in Milwaukee, WI, and I am almost 29 years old. I don’t want to take up too much of your time as I am sure you get a lot of mail but I wanted to share a little of my story with you after recently obtaining a copy of your book, “Your Secret Name”. So here it goes.

I guess you could say that shortly after I received my Birth Name, I also received my first Given Name – REJECTED. My father abandoned my mother and I shortly after I was born. I did not meet him till I was seventeen, but that was short lived as he disappeared out of my life as quickly as he appeared.. only reaffirming my first Given Name.

My mother did the best she could and raised me in church. I was always the quiet, intoverted kid who wasn’t totally excluded but wasn’t totally accepted either. Sad to say, I think most people reached out to me only out of pity or some “religious obligation”. I personally accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior in 1996 but viewed God as an absent father, much like my earthly father. If the man who helped bring me into this world didn’t love me – who could an invisible being I’ve never met love me? Needless to say, I became bitter and disillusioned with God and Christianity as a whole. I felt rejected by the whole world – including people who claimed they loved me.

At the age of fifteen, I cut myself for the first time with a piece of broken glass. This would mark the beginning of a 13 year journey of self-mutilation, occultism, substance abuse, sexual immorality, violence etc. I don’t know the exact count but it is a fair estimate to say I have over 100 scars (made up of burns and cuts) on my body.

This was the life I lived in for longer than I care to remember.

It was May 13th, 2010 when I walked back into my childhood church and recommited my life back to Christ. And over the course of this year, the Lord has placed some very integral people in my life to support and encourage me along this way. It is the first time I have heard of God’s grace, His compassion, and His renewable mercies for me. I am learning to walk with Him in a relationship built upon God’s Word, Prayer, regular church attendance, and personal discipleship with my pastor/mentor.

But to say that I have not fallen into old, detestable habits would be a lie. I have not self injured in over a year, but other mental scars and fleshly habits have not been so easily overcome. Each time I fall, I rise back up – claiming the promise made in Philippians 1:6 -“…He he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”

I wanted you to know that your book and your testimony have been such an encouragement to me. To know there is someone else out there who felt what I felt; walked similar paths that I walked AND overcame – it has really given me hope in my situation. Each day I pray for strength to resist – for indeed in certain areas I am weak.

Thank you for sharing your insights and your own personal journey. I hope, in time, the Lord will reveal to me my secret name – thus, revealing my true identity in Him.

P.S. I also want you to know that I have been recommending your book to everyone I know. Thank you for taking the time to read this. God bless!