Written by Kasmira Jensen
How much can a person handle? That is a question asked all too often, whether we ask it of ourselves or we wonder about someone we’ve seen a news story. The answer simply boils down to whether or not we have factored God into the equation. For me, looking back, we can only handle what God grants us the strength to handle; even if we don’t realize He is there. Unfortunately, that is where I have found myself all too often in my life and I often think on “what might have been” if I had realized God was always there because, in my mind, no one else was.
I grew up living a Jerry Springers scenario for the most part, but I will try to simplify it. My mother was a homosexual woman who was “committed” to her partner. Her partner’s parents have known my mother since she was 15. It was those people who raised me since my mother and her partner spent 80% of their time fighting and often with both of them incarcerated. I have always seen them as my grandparents, even though they are not biologically related to me. Because of my mother’s drug habit when I was young, at four years old my grandparents took legal guardianship of me. I still saw my mother and her partner throughout my life, but their influence in my life was small due to many police calls and frequent violence.
My grandparents were very involved in the church growing up because my grandpa was a Deacon and my grandmother was always the person to go to if someone was ill or in need. I found myself at many church events to escape home life and loved spending time both working on schoolwork and in bible classes. Home life and school life were quite similar in atmosphere as I always felt like I was unaccepted because of my parents’ choice to be homosexual and pretty much everyone knew it because I am from a small town. My “aunts and uncles” on my mom’s partner’s side of the family always struggled to see me as one of them because there was no blood connection even though my grandparents have always claimed me as theirs. In school I wad bullied often for my darker skin and because my family didn’t look like theirs.
Despite my efforts to be friendly and helpful to others around me, I was never the “cool” kid in either school or church and was often rejected by other kids my age. I found myself becoming more of an outcast as I grew into high school and junior high and was often in trouble for fighting because of the torment. I left the church at 14, when my mother was framed after trying to finally get her life together and was put away into prison for the rest of her life. I saw no point in a loving god who would punish a woman for doing her best to fix her life. It was all downhill from there.
When I found myself pregnant at 15, everyone around me was enormously disappointed when I was actually overjoyed. I have always wanted to be a wife and mother and would finally have someone who would unconditionally love me and accept me, regardless of where my blood ties were. I had decided to keep my son, but found that after he was born, my mother’s partner turned violent toward everyone living in our home. In fear for my son’s safety, I adopted him out. I was alone again, at least it felt like it to me. My grandparents struggled to watch me go through bipolar disorder and various suicide attempts. Through all of it, I still managed to graduate high school with high honors and went on to get my Associate’s Degree in the medical field. I also found myself rekindling a previous romance from when I was 14, but couldn’t pursue due to the fact that he was 7 years older than me. Despite being odd, God used him to bring me back to the cross and wake me up to the reality that God loves broken people and I wasn’t alone. He baptized me into the church on September 17, 2011.
Spoiler alert: He is now my husband of 4 and a half years and we are expecting our first son in July. Through my husband’s influence and my drive to learn, I have become a Christian beauty blogger and hope to be an author at some point. I have developed the clarity to realize that even when I left God’s side, He was still there. It was my choice not to acknowledge Him. My struggles have also given me a perspective on life, scenarios, and social issues that I would not have had the privilege to understand any other way. I was also able to learn from my mother’s negative experience enough to avoid many of her mistakes, despite making my own.
That is the beauty of God’s love: He loves us unconditionally regardless of the various mistakes we make and He does not care about where we come from. What makes us unique in the way we are God-hand crafted is what makes our stories something to celebrate even though there are dark moments. We are given the gifts and talents to connect to different types of people. I have gone from resenting my family for denying me a father or the privilege of a “normal” family to embracing the ministry opportunities that await me. As it turns out, I have a Father and He is perfect! How many get to say that? Ha ha. I guess He decided a mortal father just wouldn’t do. I hope my story inspires you or gives you a different viewpoint to consider or perhaps we have similar experiences. I love to connect with people and pray God blesses us all in that ministry.
Connect with Kasmira at “His Passion Princess”