Who could have known the long red hair and freckles that made Angel so cute as a child would be the fuel for bullying by her peers? A 13-year-old entering school in a new community, Angel was mocked and tormented to a point of no return. In her pain, she was vulnerable to anything that made her feel accepted; substance abuse became her escape. “I made their lies my truth,” she says. “I looked for ways to stop my deep feelings of inferiority.”
Kicked out of both junior and high school for what was written off as “rebellion,” Angel fell headlong into the trap of alcohol, drugs and sex. She became easy prey for manipulation when she abandoned her own family, who kept hoping for her return. She describes her life from age 14 to 37 as a “hot mess,” always intertwined with abusive and controlling men. Angel never knew the gentle touch of a man who had her best at heart; no one told her she was valuable. Her search for a knight to rescue her ended up with a pimp, who raped, beat and trafficked her. And deep in her heart, she felt that was all she deserved.
Night after night, as she walked the streets, that flowing red hair of her girlhood earned her the nickname “Dirty Red.” Life got harder and darker. Instead of experiencing the joy of a family, her daily dead-end routine was prostituting and selling drugs for crack money to take away her pain. Sometimes the cycle was interrupted by arrests and prison time, further feeding into her dysfunctional view of herself.
At her lowest point, during her last jail stint, Angel literally fell on her face and begged for God to let her die. Imagine being so very weary, feeling so trapped that you long to die.
It was then that a RAHAB volunteer, who was leading a Bible study at the prison, introduced Angel to the new life available to her in Jesus Christ. The more Angel started replacing the lies with His truth, the freer she became. RAHAB Ministries extended the Father’s love to Angel by speaking life into her, helping her family with material needs, and getting her established in counseling. She was overwhelmed by their genuine love and care.
Today, Angel is a university graduate with a 4.0 GPA and a promising career in community services and drug addiction. You can’t stop her from spreading the Jesus-love she has finally experienced herself. “I am burning to tell women how precious they are in the eyes of Jesus, how He loves you no matter what you’ve done.”