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Jessica's Faith Shines Through The Darkness

May 25, 2007

By W. James Edminson

Jessica sits on the end of the sofa. The lamp on the side table illuminates the pages of her Bible. Her prayer journal and a pen rest on her lap. Preparing spiritually for her day is a priority for Jessica.

“Every day I have my devotion time,” she says. “I read my Bible. I write in my prayer journal and pray.”

Jessica’s Christian spirit is evident immediately. Her eyes radiate joy and her smile welcomes everyone into her presence.

“I ask God to help me every day,” Jessica adds. “He comforts me and I believe He is in control of my day.”

Jessica has grown in Christ since coming to Baptist Children’s Homes’ (BCH) Noel Home near Lenoir. She credits part of her growth to her church involvement. She and the other girls at the home attend Dudley Shoals Baptist Church.

“I love going to church,” she says. “It’s a place you can go and everyone accepts you. It is a place to worship God.”

Today, Jessica’s life is much different than the struggle she faced as a child. Her early childhood was filled with abuse. She says she did not even know how to hold a fork or use a spoon and knife. Her hair often went uncombed because she did not know how to comb her hair and no one was there to comb it for her.

She lived in eight different foster homes before being adopted when she was nine years old.

Her new family provided her the home she had only seen other children enjoy. Security, care and love were now available. But as ideal as it was, the past worked its way into her present. Jessica found it difficult to maintain her relationship with her family.

“It was hard,” she recalls solemnly.

Discourse, arguments and broken relationships brought Jessica to Noel Home.

“I felt alone again,” she says. “It was like when I was little. It didn’t make sense to me.”

At Noel Home, Jessica’s feelings reverted back to her early childhood before she had been adopted. Fears she had not felt for years were rising to the surface. It was difficult to trust the child care workers. She wouldn’t even allow them to touch her.

“But I learned that they would not hurt me and I adjusted,” Jessica asserts.

The eighteen-year-old works to strengthen her relationship with her parents. She is also working to keep her past behind her.

“I have learned how to work stuff out – to work on my problems,” she says.

The changes Jessica has experienced all go back to her relationship to the Lord. She believes that everything in her life has happened for a reason.

Jessica is open about her faith and shares Christ freely. She says that she is committed to showing the people in her life who she serves.

“I hope people see Christ in me and that they ask questions,” she says. “I want them to give their lives to the Lord.”