From chaos to joy: Rose’s story
by Laurie Lind, Entrust staff writer
Chaos. Misery. Suicide. Hope. Sisterhood. Music. Johannesburg. Joy.
All these disparate elements come together in Rose’s life journey. A journey of only 21 years.
“This is Rose, 21 years old, from Philippines, sharing with you my story for God’s glory,” Rose writes.
“Before I met Christ in September 2017, my life seemed to have no direction, as if I was living in chaos.” She likens her life before Christ to a maze, a labyrinth she found herself in with “a lot of possible ways going out and yet I couldn’t find the right exit.
“There were times that I attempted to commit suicide. I wanted to end everything: the pain, suffering, mental and emotional torture. My life was miserable. Everything changed when I finally found the true essence of life and lived purposefully in a renewed hope in Christ.”
After a few years of growth as a Christian, Rose sensed God speaking to her.
“One evening, while in a Bible study, I was really bothered,” she writes. “I can’t even remember the topic discussed that night. The only thing recorded in my mind was this: ‘Be willing to be uprooted.’ My inner being froze up when someone repeated those words to my ears. It seemed like it was God who said it. God tested me beyond my comprehension. One of the most breaking situations I ever had.”
At that time, she was in a relationship, a relationship she believed was from God. Slowly, she’d begun to realize that the relationship was “my own way to cover up the family problems that were breaking me inside.” She’d hoped this young man would be her comfort and strength, would listen to her as she talked about her feelings and struggles. But gradually she’d become aware that he wasn’t able to help her. She feared he’d change if he knew all about her.
“At first, the relationship was fine. Then suddenly the wind blew in the opposite direction. Everything changed, all at once.”
For months, Rose says, she suffered “mental and emotional breakdowns” related to her family, her boyfriend, her feelings.
“I rarely share with people about my personal struggles, thinking that I could be a burden to them. I just keep to myself the struggles I have and the situations I’m in. I pour out everything through writing. But this time, it was too hard to gather all my thoughts to put them into words. I always found myself crying at night, every night. Outwardly, I was acting to be just fine, but deep inside my world was falling apart.”
Rose took Entrust Equipping Women’s first module, Facilitating Relational Learning online during the pandemic, followed by the second module, Developing a Discerning Heart.
“DDH started on February 22, 2022,” she writes. “There was something behind every discussion that triggered me to speak up some of my secrets. Thus, I knew that I could trust the group. It was during our second session when I first spoke about what’s happening to me. When we were asked about our false wells [a central concept to the DDH module], I became nervous, my hands were getting cold, I was shaking inside. Despite these, I found myself speaking about my false well.
“‘The relationship I have with my boyfriend, is my false well,’ I said. My tears were about to fall but I forced myself not to cry. At the end of the session, we were asked, ‘What is one thing you will do based on today’s lesson?’ Such a hard question but I bravely answered it with: ‘I want to be completely focused on God and disregard the false wells Satan is offering. Be totally committed to Him in everything, in every way.’
“During the weekend, I was really bothered. As I processed my thoughts in preparation for a takeaway from the previous lesson, I put it like this: ‘I’ve learned that I should allow God to fill the emptiness in my deepest being instead of finding someone to fill that void which only God can fill.’”
Rose says she realized this had been a constant issue in her life, this attempt to allow a person to fill a void only God could fill. “Only during DDH [did I] I finally recognize and admit it to myself.”
“Indeed,” she adds, “God used and is continuously using this training together with the facilitators [to help me make] the change I ultimately desire in my life.”
Rose says the sadness she felt for so long is gone, “leaving me with complete joy in Christ. Through daily surrender and fervent prayer, with the help of my fellow DDH participants and our facilitators, I am healing. In fact, they serve as my support system. I call this group SSSS: Safe Sisterhood Support System.
“I am forever grateful that God allowed me to be part this training. I treasure those people whom He used during the most breaking part of the problem. One of those is Trish Barrett. I won’t forget the night when I had a talk with her.
“A day after our conversation, she sent me a song that really suits my situation, saying that she prayed it for me when she first heard it. I know God directed me to her for a purpose. Her advice and words of wisdom, together with our discussions in DDH helped me in my decision and choice. Yes, I chose to do what God wants me to do even though it is so hard.
“To know that there are people praying for me in times like that is indeed a great blessing. Helping people is not limited to material things or financial aspect. Entrust is an enormous help for me. A lot of changes happened since FRL. Transformation continues now that I am taking DDH. At this time, I can say that I am in the stage of moving on and moving forward.
“Joy in its deepest sense, only comes from God. He alone can give us great joy which no one could ever give. Personally, I found my greatest joy in Him alone; He is the source of the deep joy seen in my eyes after a tremendous storm passed.”
Rose’s story contains a beautiful P.S.
One day, she saw a post on Entrust’s Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/Entrust4) about Eli Kwong, a young man who is heading to South Africa to serve with the International College of Bible and Missions in Johannesburg through Entrust’s STEP internship initiative.
“Upon reading it, I felt like I also want to be part of what God is doing outside the Philippines. It is one of my dreams to go overseas, if God will allow me to. For days, I kept on thinking about it.”
Eli’s story sparked a new thought in Rose’s mind. Rose describes that thought using language from Entrust’s DDH course; words like “desire” (something you long for but may not be able to control) and “goal” (something you desire and may have some control over).
“I have the desire [to serve God overseas], but only God can turn that desire into a goal that will glorify Him. So, I need to pray for it and develop a discerning heart. Discern what God really wants for me.”