This is the story of one of our HOPE family (staff). Christina tells in her own words, her journey and how she came to be part of Hope for the Island.
First of all I would like to thank God for His grace to me and I pray that I can remember all the things that He has done in my life.
Since first year High School my mother passed away and I really didn’t know what to do and how we could move on after what happened. I really couldn’t accept that my mom was gone.
Deep inside my heart it is really painful and I said to myself that I don’t have hope and a future anymore because I just depended on my mom. She is the one taking care of us and sending us to school.
My Dad was really irresponsible with us. He was always drunk, gambling and doing bad things. 1st year to 3rd year high school I just decided to be a working student so that I could finish even high school. It was so hard for me to wake up early in the morning to do daily chores and make ice candy and sell it in our school so that I can have snacks during our recess time.
There are times in my life that I just want to follow my mom or kill myself so that I don’t have problems in this world anymore because my life was so hard and my life and my heart is emotionally dead.
Even my cousins discouraged us by saying that we have no hope, no future, every day my heart is always crying and I really don’t understand what is going on in my life.
My father doesn’t care about us and even our relatives. But God changed all of this into something new. Year 2004 I am graduating in High School, we meet this girl whose father worked at HOPE. We became good friends. She is always inviting us to eat or sometimes sleep over at Hope for the Island. I can see God in her life and I am being loved and I felt that there was someone who cared. She is also inviting us to Youth Ministry, that’s where we met Papa Derek, Mama Jenn, Makana and Brison.
Mama Jenn approached us to ask if we want to attend her Discipleship class and that is the time I understand God’s love to me. I also said to myself that one day I want to be part of the HOPE family, finally my wish has come true.
The next day Papa Derek & Mama Jenn told us they will support our schooling in high school and to be a part of their family.
I am so happy my heart finally found the joy, peace, hope, comfort and a real family. At first I am shy to talk to them because they are different, I said they are white people and I don’t know how to communicate with them. But God is good to me and I know that this is just the beginning of His plan in my life. I can really feel their love and they treated me like their own daughter and family.
But sometimes my past will remind me over and over again, but God slowly changes my heart even though it is hard for me to forget my past. God clearly said to me that He has a good plan ahead and I need to move on and forget what is behind. By the help of the Van Ryckeghem family and the people that pray with us the more I understand the Father’s heart or God’s heart.
God is really good to me. When I became a Christian I just want also that my Dad and my younger sister Eden will understand God’s love in their life too. I have been praying for my father that he will be a Christian also. After 5 years God answered my prayer, my father got saved and he became a Christian and I said to God, thank you so much Lord and the Lord reminded me. He said Cristina don’t lose hope because I am your hope and I can do everything that is good just for you.
Year 2007-2008 I decided to obey God and I helped do Kids and Preschool ministry. I learned how to share God’s love to the young kids. I am also praying that I can go to College and God did not disappoint me.
Year 2010-2011 God is still faithful to me. I go back to serve people and glorify God and I know for sure that God has a big plan for me in the future and God is always reminding me that I don’t need to worry about my future. He is a big God and His grace is enough for me.
I pray that this year that God will provide financial need in our house and I pray also that my sister Eden can go to college.
Thank you for reading my life story, I pray that you will be blessed.