rachellemoomey's Video Channel
My Testimony--by: Rachelle Moomey
Began October 30, 2006 Finished July 21, 2008
I grew up in a very close nit family in a very small town in Arkansas. I grew up going to a small Southern Baptist church with my mother and grandparents. I've been baptized twice, once as a young child, and then several years later.
I've always felt the hand of God in my life. I never doubted His existence, and yet, as many Christians do, I strayed very, very far from God. Further than most people could even imagine.
Recently I have been feeling led to write down my story. Although some things in my past I never wanted to see the light of day. I pray that the Lord guides my hand and that what is written here is His will, and brings glory and honor to Him.
I'm not sure where to begin. So much of my past now feels like I was watching the life of someone else. All the loneliness and pain, the confusion and guilt has been replaced by the love and joy, and peace of Christ in my life.
I'm a wife, a mother, a friend, an employee, and a co-worker. There's much in my life that is not perfect, that makes me and my family unhappy. But I trust that everything will work out in God's timing and in His will.
I love my church and the people there. But most of all, I love my Lord. Because He alone knows every dark place I have been and loves me anyway.
Looking at my life now, the words liar, thief, alcoholic... drug addict, are not words that come to mind. But at times in my life all of those words described me.
How did a Christian child, in a Christian home fall so far from God? And how did that woman in so much pain, become the woman so in love with God today? I'm not saying that I am now perfect, believe me, I'm not even close. But I am trying to do God's will.
I had a very good childhood, and then life got very painful. I began sneaking drinks of alcohol and stealing cigarettes at the age of twelve. At thirteen, I became #$#%%ually active and was not sneaking little drinks anymore, but I was actually getting drunk. Although, I did stop drinking for about three years after I was raped. I got drunk with someone I cared a great deal about and was much older than me. Even though I blacked out through most of that night, it was still incredibly painful and traumatic for such a young mind to deal with. At the time I considered it rape, although it wasn't anything violent. I shed many tears. Many, many times it would hit me all at once and I would lean against the wall and slide down to the floor in hysterical tears. It would be almost three years before I saw that person again. Three years before I began to heal, to forgive; to realize that how I viewed something is not necessarily how someone else viewed it. And it would take twenty years for that person to realize how I had felt about that night, and it wasn't consensual as he had always thought. So although by that time I had completely forgiven him, and myself for that matter, and put it in the past, his regret was just beginningand I am very, truly sorry for that.
I believe it was actually before that night that I began wanting to die. I remember many times sitting in my bedroom window with a piece of broken glass at my wrists. Sometimes scraping across my wrist, sometimes bringing blood. I believe they call it "cutting" now. Now it's widely known about, and there's help. But in 1983, I thought I was the only one.
I remember taking an entire bottle of Tylenol because I wanted the pain to stop. I don't know exactly what the repercussions of that could have been..I do remember being very queasy and sleepy. I firmly believe God intervened at that point, because I got a phone call from the brother of a friend. I honestly don't remember him ever calling me before then. But that day, I told him what I had done and he kept me on the phone for hours talking to me. He was so scared to let me go to sleep. I don't think I ever thanked him for that.
At sixteen I started smoking and drinking again. I loved to party, although I wasn't yet into drugs. But less than a year after I started drinking again is when I started smoking pot, and eventually experimenting with other drugs.
My mother begged me to start family counseling with her, and I flat refused. Our relationship that was once so close was now very loud and hateful and often violent. At one point I ran away from home and stayed with some friends (whose apartment was a non-stop party) for a couple of weeks. I came back the day before we moved to Florida.
I loved Florida, and loved living there, but my relationship with my mother became even worse. After summer school, work, and two night classes (the credits needed for graduation were very different) I was still failing my senior year, so I quit school, and moved in with my boyfriend.
I went from pot and speed to snorting cocaine and helping my boyfriend with piddley cons. I remember driving back from Miami and doing lines of coke off of a cassette case that had a cross and skulls on it, and said "Appetite for Destruction" on it. I remember looking down at the case and thinking, "God, what am I doing?"
Then I went back home to visit my grandparents in Arkansas. They talked me into going back to school and doing my senior year over again. So I did, although I missed my boyfriend terribly-even though we argued most of the time. So my boyfriend moved here with me and stayed in my grandparent's extra room.
It had been many years since I'd gone to church, even though I did still pray sometimes. I remember getting to the point where I was so stressed out and miserable that I prayed for His help and His guidance. I remember telling God how tired and confused I was and that I was putting everything in His hands.
It's not very often you get an answer from God immediately. But a few hours later, I got a call saying that my boyfriend had been arrested for possession with intent to sell. Just like that he was out of my life, almost. Except for a few letters and a ride to the bus station when he got out of prison.
For a short time after that I started going to First Assembly of God in Cabot. A couple of friends I worked with invited me. I drew so close to God during that time, and there were so many turning points in my life.
One of the most prominent memories was a vision I had at a Karen White performance. I had gone with the church youth group. I remember standing there before the concert. I "saw" a man in white robes (much like what was worn in Christ's day). Actually, he looked a lot like the pictures of Jesus. Whether Christ or angel, he walked towards me and stopped in front of me. He placed his hand on my shoulder, looked at me and said, "Today's the day you'll see."
I had always loved singingand I have always, well, for most of my life, had extreme stage fright! So, a vision from God that placed His call on my life and verified my own dreams for myself was enough to make me run as hard and as fast as I could the other way!
It was one thing for me to dream of my own successful music career (even though I didn't have the nerve to sing in front of people); but it was a whole other story for God to say, "Yes, that's what I want you to do. But it will not be all about you; it will be all about Me." So, I let that spirit of fear take over. I stopped going to church all together.
I started dating someone who was not a Christian. Who was a liar and thief. Eventually we moved in together and then married. I do need to make it clear that I did know that when I got married that first time, that I was not supposed to spend the rest of my life with him. And if I didn't know it in my heart then, then the tornado the day I got married would have been a good clue, not to mention no electricity for the reception.
During my first marriage I was miserable. For 95% of that time I was, for the most part, homeless. Sometimes we stayed with family or friends, sometimes hotels, and a whole lot of the time we slept in the car. Most of the time we did not know where our next meal was coming from. And to make it worse, I was pregnant. I was sick all day, every day, for 9 months. We lived on food stamps and the money he got from stealing, and the occasional real job.
At the end of my pregnancy, and our marriage, we'd decided it was time for me to go home and him to turn himself in. Four days before my son's birth, my husband went to jail. Almost 3 weeks after my son's birth, (which in and of itself is an interesting story), my grandfather died while on the operating table, having a pacemaker put in his heart. Thirteen days later one of my uncle's died from a heart attack at 48 years old. It was quite a stressful time for my family.
Within a couple of months I was pregnant again and filing for divorce, and yes, my husband was still in jail. At that time I had a well paying job. I had rented my own house and was paying my own bills. My mother watched my son, and eventually my daughter, while I was working. It was during this time that I met Daniel, who said very little to me at first. It wasn't until he had also filed for divorce that we began talking.
My second child was 3 months old when Daniel and I started seeing each other, and we've been together ever since. The day we got married was the best day of my life. As I said my vows, I actually cried. I knew, beyond any doubt, that for the first time in a very long time, I was doing exactly what God wanted me to do.
There have been many times when I didn't know if our marriage would last, but I have never, EVER, doubted that we are supposed to be husband and wife. No matter how bad things would getI love him more now than the day we married.
The next part of this testimony is probably one of the most difficult things I have ever put on paper. One of God's commandments is "Thou shalt not lie", and I do tend to be a very honest person. I consider my life an open book, the good and the very bad, except of course, for those pages that are yellowed and folded away so they are never seen.
Hopefully, sharing this will help someone else through the darkness and into the light of Christ. Most people know that at one time, I did do drugs. I don't hide it, but I don't talk about it a lot either. And I definantly didn't speak of how badly I was in to drugs, or how I did them.
I started doing meth when Daniel and I started seeing each other. Looking back, I'm sure there were times I should have overdosed, but thankfully, God had other plans for me. I've even had three more children, for a total of five bundles of joy. (That's not including my two step-sons and granddaughter, who are all blessings in their own right.)
I , personally, was not actually ready to quit when my husband decided it was time for us to stop. Don't misunderstand, I was not proud of being an addict . I did not like having to hide my addiction, lying, avoiding most people-especially family. I did not like what it was doing to our family or our finances. I definatly did not like the crash, the jonesing (craving), or the withdrawals.
But as good the high was, the crash was worse than you would think. The nausea, the stomach and body cramps, the mood swingsespecially towards anger and depression, the complete exhaustionphysical, mental, and emotional. And guess what... When I came down, all my problems where still there, and a whole lot of the time they were a whole lot worse.
Then there was the guilt and the feelings of failure. I failed myself. I failed my kids, my family, my friends, I was failing as a wife, and I was failing Godalthough most of the time I felt too worthless for even God to care about anymore. Why is it we are so much harder on ourselves than what anyone else would be?
I loved my husband, I loved my kids, and I loved my addiction. I didn't want to come down. I didn't want to grow up, and I didn't want reality.
When my husband was ready to quit and live better lives, I was not. But I did anyway. Then my husband got transferred out of state, and suddenly we were away from our old lives and people we knew that were using. It made it sooo much easier to quit that way.
I've been clean for well over ten years now, and I am so grateful--beyond grateful, that God made it easier for me to stop than most people. I'm also very thankful. Thankful for God delivering me from an addiction that would have killed me and left my children without their mother. There is so much truth in the scripture, "I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me".
Notice I did say easier, not easy. There is absolutely NOTHING easy about quitting ANY addiction! But God is faithful to His promises. And He has promised to be with us. To help us and guide us, and to give us His strength. And if, for whatever reason, we feel unable to go on, He's promised to carry us! Praise God! That alone is enough to make me dance! I can't even begin to count the times He's carried me!
So, at this point, we're off drugs, in another state, and in a nice house. My husband goes from a good job to a very good and very well paying job. Life was pretty good... So why did I start drinking like a fish?
When I was a teenager I would drink a lot, party with friends. Then I got to where I hardly drank much at all. But at this time, I'd drink a little more, and a little more, until I wasn't stopping after a couple of beers or drinks anymore. There was a 6-pack gone. Then there was a 12-pack gone and I had drunk 9 or 10 of them. Then there were cases!! There's no telling how many out of a case, or how many cases in a week we went through. What kind of example was that for my kids? What impression did it give to other people?
I didn't go to church, (although I started "sending" my kids). I cussed like a sailor, smoked like a freight train, and drank like a fishand still told people I was a Christian! What kind of damage did I do? Not just to myself and my family, but to those searching for God?
I "said" I was a Christian. I grew up in church, I believed in God, but I did not have a personal relationship with Christ. I was just as lost as everyone else I knew. I was still searching like everyone else. Although I knew God at one time, I wanted to live life the way I wanted. So I searched for beliefs that made me feel better.
I said I was a Christian, but I still read book after book on New Age, the supernatural, and Wicca. I even fancied myself a "Christian Witch" for a little while. But none of it filled the emptiness inside.
It was at this point that my husband had his first breakdown. It was New Year's Eve. He called me from the hospital and said he was admitting himself. Daniel had been on depression medicine for a while, but it didn't seem to be helping. It actually seemed to be getting worse. His depression and anxiety worsened, and he became suicidal. I didn't know how to handle it. I started drinking even more, and crying all the time. Soon I was on anxiety medication, and sleep medicine-and abusing all of it.
For the next several years our life was like a roller coaster. A lot of times, especially at first, the medications were 100 times worse than the various diagnoses. Drug side-effects can be horrendous. Everything from mood and personality changes, to memory loss, muscle spasms and being in what I called a "zombie" state of mind.
Daniel would be stable for 3 or 4 months. Then for whatever reason, he would become unstable, sometimes not remembering a week at a time. Sometimes, and often, ending up in jail or the hospital.
Unfortunately, Daniel lost that very good paying job, and many more over the years. Most companies don't want to deal with someone who's bipolar. The monthly psychiatrist and therapist appointments alone are frustrating for everyone involved. Then, if something more happens, they find a reason for termination.
After we moved back to Arkansas, things just went from bad to worse. Daniel had a couple of decent jobs, but we were seriously struggling financially. We actually went six months with no electricity, and sometimes without water. It was pretty miserable.
The very day that we were waiting for the electric company to turn our electric on, our house burned down. It was not just our house though. We lived in the house I grew up in. My grandparents built it in the 50's.
My husband was so distraught over everything that he intentionally took too much of his medications. Thankfully, I found him in time. When I found him at the hotel we were staying in, he was still able to walk (sort of) to the car. By the time we got to the hospital, they had to take him in on a stretcher because he was unconscious. He was in a coma for several days before he woke up and was able to come home.
I was, and still am, so grateful to those that helped during that time. Red Cross, my kids' school, and mostly-the amazing people at my church. I had already started going back to church some, although I wasn't changing the way I lived yet. But after the house burned and I witnessed the genuine love of Christ, I began going more and more often, until I was going to church Sunday morning and evening service and Wednesday night service. And until I got a job I was also going to Bible study once a week.
Then, I put my phobia of singing on stage in God's hands and took a leap of faith. I became one of the backup singers for our praise and worship team at church. To be honest, I don't even remember the first few weeks of singing!! I was so terrified! All I knew was that God has always wanted me up there. Now, I still get butterflies in my stomach sometimes, but I'm becoming much more comfortable with it.
The change has been gradual and steady. Knowing where I've been and where I am now is a true testament to God's mercy, forgiveness, and unconditional love. Only God is worthy of the glory and praise for how my life has been changed. I could not live without Him. He's the rock on which I stand. He is who I lean on, and I've needed His strength time and time again. He never lets me down, and he never ceases to amaze me!
When I am at my absolute lowest point, like being in an ER all night while the man I love, and father of my children is being admitted to the hospital; Those are the times that God has done the most in my heart and soul.
I have spent many Saturday nights in the hospital only to get home and take a shower, get the kids up and go to church. I have learned that it is at those times that my God will meet me. When I put all my other problems asideeven when I don't feel like itand seek Him, worship Him, love Him, that God picks me up. I go to church at these times with intentions of lifting Him up, and He lifts me up! HE lifts ME up!! It's so amazing!!
Nothing will ever stop my worship again! I have been tested by fiery trials, I have endured a lot, and will continue to endure, and through it all, my Lord has purified my faith, and I pray He uses everything I have been through to help someone else find strength in Him and bring glory and honor to His name.
I have changed so much!! I am so grateful to God for the amazing things He's done in my life, especially in these last months. He has been so good to me! And I know that as I continue to grow in my walk with Him, He will make my life even more incredible than it already isand I can't wait to see what He has in store for me!!
1 Peter 1:6-7
So be truly glad! There is wonderful joy ahead, even though it is necessary for you to endure many trials for a while.
These trials are only to test your faith, to show that it is strong and pure. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies goldand your faith is far more precious to God than mere gold. So if your faith remains strong after being tried by fiery trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.