In dark despair, Sheila Bishop reached out to God in prayer .
Six years ago, my common law partner of eighteen years walked out of my life, leaving me on the verge of bankruptcy.
I was distraught, scared and confused.
I did not do well, mentally or spiritually. I was dealing with abandonment, unworthiness, adultery and rape.
I had no job, no education and no confidence.
I fell into a deep, black well of depression.
I was suicidal and cutting.
I would stand in front of a mirror naked and stare with so much rage, hate and disgust. That was when I started to cut. I cut from the deep pain I felt inside and did not know how to express.
I prayed to God for help. I prayed for meaning and purpose in my life.
Prayer Opened My Eyes
I listened with my soul, I could see what God had been trying to show me, all along.
First, He told me to go to Divorce Care. A friend brought me there. Divorce Care gave me permission to feel sadness for the first time in my life, without guilt or shame. At the first session of Divorce Care I laughed a lot. At the second session I cried. The pain of reality — that my partner was not coming back — was so deep.
Until then, staying numb inside had been my only means of survival.
Next, God sent me a wonderful, devoted Pastor to help me through this healing.
My Pastor was very compassionate and caring. He would remind me about God’s love. He would send me inspirational emails, telling me God loves me like a daughter. That He would never leave me.
I needed to hear this. When my spouse walked away, so did my parents. I felt alone.
I Had Become Needy Like a Child
I would sit at my computer, reading my Pastor’s emails, with tears streaming down my face and a razor in my hand, just wanting someone at the other end of my computer to care enough about me, to care whether I lived or died.
My Pastor told me often that he cared. That I was worth it. Worth the time invested in me.
From Divorce Care, I graduated to Alpha. From there, I started going to Bible Study.
I grew and grew from God’s love. I saw changes in myself as I learned more about God. I was baptized.
Three years ago, I sold my marital home and moved into a hotel room with my four pets for two weeks, waiting anxiously to hear whether I had been accepted for a mortgage for a mini home.
It Was scary to Feel Homeless
The money from the sale of the home was dwindling fast.
I had to do whatever it would take to keep my family together. That included my pets. I felt I’d be no different than my spouse or my parents, if I abandoned them when life was tough.
I lay on the bed in the hotel and was filled with peace and trust that all would work out.
I had learned to lean on and trust God.
And He came through. My family was able to stay together.
Next, God sent me to Changes, a non-profit organization that trains and helps people find a job. They trained me and I was hired by Changes to help others.
When I first showed up at Changes, I had phobias — I didn’t want to talk to people on the phone. I didn’t want to talk to people at all.
The people at Changes helped me overcome these phobias. One of the founders even rehearsed with me a telephone conversation I had to make. My heart was pounding and sweat was dripping from my hands. But I did it. It got easier and easier with her coaching.
God showed me, through her, that I was worthy and capable.
My Son Returned
My son, who moved away for six months, has returned home. When he announced he was going to live with my parents and would not be coming back, my heart broke. I was angry with my parents for convincing him to stay with them and I was worried all the time about his well-being.
Now he is home and receiving the same training I got.
We are a lot closer now and he is even showing an interest in learning about God. He wants to become the best man he can be.
Best of all to me is that he has life in his eyes again.
God has used people to open my eyes to what He has for me and He has opened many doors to speak to me.
I cannot say that my life has become easy but now I have God in my life, He is with me through the changes. And He is truly blessing my family.
Sheila Bishop was born in London Ontario, Canada. She has raised two children. By God’s Grace, she has overcome issues of abuse, abandonment and rape. She has used the power she has received through faith to overcome anxiety and depression. She now helps other women overcome similar fears and aids them in their self-development.
“Taking the Disciples Indeed Testimony Course with Bobbie Ann Cole was very healing for me. I walked in not knowing what to expect and walked out with more confidence to tell my story.”