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Con-Man's Daughter Finds True Love

“As a little girl, I just thought he hung the moon and that I had the best dad ever; about middle school is when I started to realize that he was different from the other dads.”

Candice Curry’s dad was a con man, a scammer who refused to get a job, and even though her mom was the one who worked hard as a nurse to provide for the family, Candice craved her father’s love and approval.

“No matter what I did, nothing was ever good enough. I would’ve done anything that he asked to please him so that he would want to be with me or like me or love me or think I was cool. He started giving me drugs in high school, and I took them because I wanted him to like me.”

One night when she was sixteen, Candice was raped by a friend of her father’s. When her dad found out, Candice expected he would defend her.

“But instead, he threatened that if I ever told he would make my life a living hell. He threw me under the bus so that he wouldn’t get in trouble with my mom, and so I think that was when I realized I had zero value to him.”

The revelation was devastating.

“That, I think, is when I really built a wall up and stopped trusting anybody, because why would anybody else see any redeeming qualities in me if he couldn’t find one?”

The pain of her dad’s rejection stayed with Candice for years.

“I just didn’t think I was good enough for anybody, and as soon as somebody good got close, then I would intentionally destroy it. I made horrible decisions and destroyed healthy relationships so that they wouldn’t get any closer.”

After high school, she started working in the restaurant business.  Then, on impulse, got married in Vegas and soon had a daughter, but the marriage didn’t last and a few years later, she met Brandon at work.

“I just totally fell in love with him because he was so kind to me and so good to me and so good to my daughter that, I mean, I couldn’t help it! I just hadn’t experienced that. No one had come to me and loved on me without expecting something from me.”

The two married, excited about their future together.  Within a year Candice had triplets, but the couple wasn’t prepared for the changes or financial demands that followed.

“I was a very different person than the day we got married, physically. I had had three babies; having three babies take a toll on your body, and so I did not feel pretty. I was growing bitter because he was gone all the time, and I was at home with these babies and it was hard and he was bitter because he was working like crazy and we couldn’t get ahead. I wasn’t very good to him. I pushed him away, because fear and exhaustion. We were exhausted.”

During that time, Candice’s oldest daughter started going to church after a cousin signed her up for the choir.

“I started taking her to church purely out of obligation to my daughter and not as a desire for myself. God was for perfect people. Growing up, I just thought you had to fit a certain mold for God to know you.”

That summer at Vacation Bible school, her daughter gave her life to Christ.

“It kind of rocked me. I hadn’t been any example of Christ to her, and here she was like all in.  She went to this church and was listening to who Jesus was and how much he loved her and she was like I’m in!  I wanted her bravery and I wanted her confidence in Jesus. Something started softening about me sitting and listening to who Jesus was.”

Meanwhile, she carried the guilt of her marriage and family falling apart.

“We were failing our kids and we were just failing at life. I wasn’t a good wife to him. And so that was scary because I knew he deserved better than me. Who I had become wasn’t who he chose to marry.”

The couple decided to divorce. Then, Candice says God spoke to her.

‘“That’s the moment that I realized that God knew me. It was the first time that I heard God. And I didn’t hear him audibly, I just-it was in my heart. And he said, ‘You know, you’ve been looking for me, and here I am, and I’m going to show you what it’s like to be my daughter, and if you want your husband to know what you’ve been experiencing, then you’re going to have to be his example. And you’re going to have to show him what forgiveness and unconditional love really looks like’ And I did not want to hear that.”’

Candice reached out to her husband and they reconciled. They also began attending church as a family.

“It changed our whole world, our entire world. We both gave our life to Christ and were baptized together.”

Candice says she has found complete acceptance—and purpose—in Christ.

“He takes all of our little broken pieces and he turns them into this beautiful stained glass where the light shines through and creates just the most amazing picture.
You can come to him exactly the way you are. You do not have to clean up and make yourself right. That’s what he does. He takes away our sins so that we don’t have to carry them.”

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