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Finding Love After Losing Everything

Maryann says, “My childhood growing up with an abusive dad and alcoholism… if I could describe it in a weather report it would be tornado, unpredictable.”

Maryann’s dad was a raging alcoholic who beat her mom and threatened them with guns. She remembers, “The police would come often, because it was always another domestic violence case for us.”

Maryann was 12 when she picked up her father’s habits.   

Maryann shares, “What compelled me to drink, and what was missing in my life was peace, was love. I felt abandoned my entire life.  I felt like a mistake.”  

Maryann’s father died from cancer when she was in high school, but she still felt his influence on her life. At 17, she married a man just like him.  

Maryann says, “I know it's dysfunctional, but to me the more control, the more abuse meant the more of love.”

After four years, they divorced. And Maryann joined the air force. Even though it gave her stability and hope for the future, she looked to men and alcohol for what the military couldn’t give her.

Maryann recalls, “I went from bed to bed to find love. The drinking.  What didn't it do for me!  I was so numb.  I mean, I drank till I blacked out.”

Then Maryann met Michael, a fighter pilot who was also a Christian. Unlike most of the men she pursued, he refused her sexual advances. Instead, he started sharing his faith in Christ and taking her to church.   

Maryann shares, “When I saw this light in him, that he wasn't like everyone else, that he didn't have to drink, and his value wasn't caught up in being a fighter pilot. I realized that I wanted to know more about Jesus.”

Maryann was afraid to tell Michael about her past, but her continual bouts with drunkenness made it obvious to him that she was carrying some deep seeded pain.

Michael says, “Something’s gotta give. She was definitely someone who was just dying for God in some way.”

Eventually Michael was transferred to Arizona. Then, a few months later Maryann went to phoenix for a friend’s wedding. She visited Michael ready to share her story.
Michael immediately thought her life resonated with the book of job.

Michael shares, “Why the Book of Job?  Because as she's telling me all this to me. “It was instantaneously a match for poor Job who just lost it all.”

As Mike began to read the story to her neither of them had any idea how their lives would change.

Maryann remembers, “My heart was racing, my body felt like it was on fire, and the Word of God was alive. God began to speak to me, almost with his own voice.  And in that moment I said, ‘Forgive me, Father, for I have questioned you my entire life.  But just like at the end of Job, Job said that ‘Today I know you.' Everything was made new in that moment and I was crying because I was so happy. It was like I could breathe.  I felt free and I felt alive.  Like "WHAT IS THIS?!  I've never felt this in my life.  No amount of drinking, no about of getting high has ever been able to compare to this love.’”

At that moment, Maryann surrendered her heart to Jesus!

Maryann says, “When I repented and gave my life to God, and I asked for him to forgive me of all of that vile background.  And he delivered me miraculously from alcohol.”

Two weeks later, Mike did something he wanted to do since she gave her life to Christ - propose to Maryann. They say at that moment, God gave them a sign of promise!

Michael recalls, “This massive rainbow immediately came out and like, ‘Okay, okay God, this is good, this is funny, I couldn't have arranged for this.  This is all right.’”

Maryann shares, “I had no reservation, I just floated on down... I couldn't wait to be one with him. I couldn't wait to start our journey together.  I was so ready for that life, so ready!”

Maryann has been sober for 17 years. Today, they have two children and they started a ministry called broken no more.  Maryann has written a book about her life to help lead others to freedom in Christ.

Maryann says, “My identity is no longer whore, alcoholic, damaged goods.  My identity is ‘I am born of God and the evil one can't touch me. There is a God who loves you more and He doesn't see your sin, He sees his blood.  You're not too damaged to reach out and touch the same God who touched me. All you have to do is ask the same God who rescued me to rescue you. And God will use what the enemy meant for evil for your good, I promise.’”

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