From Rejection to Acceptance
Updated: Feb 6, 2021
When I was young I made vows to myself: I vowed that I would never be like my mother. I said I would never treat my kids like she did – choosing a man over my children. I said I would never drink or do drugs. I wanted better for my life. But the very things I said I would not be, I became. And the very things I said I would not do, I did. I felt rejected by my mother, step-father, and brother. I was physically, sexually, and verbally abused by my step-father. I felt isolated, rejected, neglected, and less than human. This went on until I ran away. In the custody of child services for 7 years, I moved around. I was placed with family members, in shelters, foster homes, group homes, and treatment centers until I was finally emancipated at age 17.
Never feeling loved or accepted, I turned to drugs, money, and men to satisfy the emptiness and heartache I felt inside. The only coping skill I had was anger. I was angry at my mom for not choosing me, at the system for making me feel unwanted like a stray cat, and I was angry at God because I thought He did not care about me enough to help me. Anger did not work in my favor.
I did not care if I lived or died. By 25 I had attempted suicide seven times. But God intervened. He had a different plan.
The world rejected me but God accepted me. No one picked me, but God chose me and called me. Where I am weak, He is strong. He knows me and hears me and cares very much for me. He knows what I need before I do, and I trust Him with my life. My life is not my own, it belongs to Jesus Christ--He paid my ransom from death, hell, and the grave. Since coming to The Mercy House, I have been delivered from drug addiction. I have been set free from the strongholds of my past. I have been accepted into a new family at New Life. I have never felt this much love, acceptance, and kindness. There’s no need to sabotage or self-destruct because I am living a life of purpose and hope and newness.
The old Leilani died and I am just getting to know this new one. I love Jesus and people. My new purpose is to be a light in the dark for others like me, to influence women in a positive way. I am living a life of serving God and others because anything outside of God's plan for my life will not work. I would like to pursue an education in ministry. I am now available to be used by God to help people who are lost and hurting as New Life did for me.