butterfly-RHIANNABefore I was sent to Mary’s Song which is a drug and alcohol rehab located in New Orleans, Louisiana, my life was without God. I knew very little about Him. I knew that there was a heaven and a hell and I knew my destiny was hell. From a very early age, I lived with angry and quarreling parents, drunkenness, abuse, loneliness; I had no self worth and felt very unloved. My life progressed to bigger and worse things. After broken marriages and many bitter relationships, I turned to drugs. Heroin became my one and only LOVE. My addiction brought failure into all areas of my life. I spent nearly two-thirds of my life in jails, prisons and penitentiaries. During my years of addiction, I was diagnosed with cancer and was given zero chance of living in 1999. But I can remember, after hearing the diagnosis, I went to my cell and prayed to a God I did not know.

Another time was in 2005. I faced death once again during Katrina. Living in St. Bernard Parish, I decided to stay in my home during the hurricane. My dog woke me up out of my drugged sleep by barking continually. I walked outside to see a tidal wave coming down my street towards me, pushing cars, trucks, parts of houses and everything possible in its way. I remember closing the door and, looking up, I once again asked God, “Forgive me of my sins whether I meant them or not.” I didn’t even know if God could hear me, but I knew I needed Him because I could not swim. Two days later I was rescued off a roof top and I asked God, “Why am I alive? Why are you saving me? What do you want?” My life continued with drugs and death all around me, but through it all I was still alive and I was feeling such a void in my life. God had been chasing me, fighting for my soul all those years. I just did not know it!

Recently, I have been diagnosed with Hepatitis C and will be starting a series of painful treatments after the first of the year, but I know God has his hand on my life. After these eleven months at Mary’s Song, where I was encouraged to sit still and learn about this God, I read multiple books about God. I did many class studies about God. I learned how to pray. I even started attending church. I not only learned about God but also how to surrender to Him. Many blessings started to come into my life. God saved me and changed me. He was present with me all my life, keeping me alive because He had a plan for my life. I accepted Jesus Christ as my savior and have a future as a Christian. Thanks to Mary’s Song, I am now chasing God!