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Deane Gabor is a Term 3 IMPACT195 student sharing her testimony at our End of Term Celebration this Thursday night. Read her powerful story of life change here.
“Good evening my name is Deane Gabor and I am an IMPACT195 graduate.
Tonight I’m here to share with you that God is faithful. In 1Corinthians 1:9 it says ‘God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord.’
I was raised in a Christian home, and for the most part my childhood was happy and filled with a lot of love. From a young age I dealt with sexual abuse and then at age eighteen my happiness started slowly disappearing after being raped by my brother’s best friend. I was broken inside and just wanted to run away.
I decided to move and run to Utah and into the arms of a man who was fifteen years older than me. He was extremely emotionally and verbally abusive and heavily addicted to cocaine. After a few years I finally gained enough strength to leave him but I had only acquired more pain and more hurt which I had no idea how to deal with. I coped by running again and began medicating with drugs and alcohol. I struggled with an eating disorder.
I was broken inside.
I remember my heart actually aching and throbbing at times. Everything love was supposed to be, it wasn’t. Love to me was something that hurt you and wasn’t safe. Life was no longer a happy, loving, safe place. It became to me a place I had to survive, medicate and protect myself.
I put up strong walls, and I didn’t let anyone get too close to me, not even my own family. My addictions and just total lack of self-worth went on for years until one glorious morning I had had enough. I had had enough of who I was. I had blamed so many people for hurting me but never took responsibility for what I was doing and who I had been hurting.
I remember grabbing my dog. I took off running in the woods. I collapsed face down in the woods and just began to sob and cry out to the Lord, pleading with Him to do whatever it would take to change me. In the past I had cried out to Him, but there were boundaries I would put up even with God. Not this morning though. This morning all walls came down.
It was shortly after that, that I received my third DUI. Praise Jesus! I did some jail, rehab and probation all with the strength of the Lord and under His grace. This was definitely a challenging time for me but God was faithful. While I was going through it all I began writing out the Psalms and personalizing the prayers to my own life and situations. God was teaching me how to pray and cry out to Him.
I wanted more for myself. I wanted meaning and purpose. Not only was I praying but also I began asking others for prayer, specifically prayer for direction. While being on probation I was introduced to Yoga by my lawyer of all people. After my first class I was amazed by the way I felt after. I loved stretching. I began practicing every day and when I would practice I would just offer my body to Jesus.
Here I was in this room where others were worshipping their higher power and I was encountering the living God and I was worshipping Him. I felt safe giving Him my whole body. This was a big step in light of what He had allowed to happen to me when I was young.
Jesus began to speak to me and little by little He began a beautiful healing inside of me. He gave me the scripture, 1Corinthians 6.19, ‘Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.’
Eventually I was miraculously released from probation and God opened the doors for me to move out to California. He is so faithful! I remember one night I drew out a picture of myself and across it I wrote surrendered. God came and met with me during this fragile time.
One evening right around sunset I was sitting on a couch that was in our front lawn just staring up into the sky. God began speaking to me through His creation in the clouds and I had this strong urgency to put my running shoes on and go down to the cliffs. I felt as though He was calling me to come and meet with Him. That night I experienced God in a way that forever changed me and all I could do was worship Him.
I belonged to Him and everything that had been taken from me, He gave me back except it was better and it was pure. I got the best sleep of my life that night and in the morning I woke up free. I knew there was a plan for my life and I knew that God saw me, and was with me, and was guiding my footsteps.
All I had suffered He had suffered with me.
There was this new hunger inside me to know God. I had experienced Him in such a way that I just wanted more. I began reading His word and locking myself in my room for hours and days on end and I would do anything and everything that made me feel close Him. I would read His word, or do art or listen to worship and sermons. I just wanted to be with Him. I began walking to the Rock Church too. Sometimes I would walk up to eight miles just to go worship and be in a place where others were worshipping Him.
Every day I was changing.
God began removing people and things from my life that in my own power I never could have done on my own.
One Sunday, Pastor Miles challenged the congregation to a forty day fast. I was all in. Each day of the fast I would write out a Proverb and on day thirty-one I wrote out Proverbs 31 and realized I wanted to be a wife. Everything I had run from and protected myself from I now wanted. I now understood God as my first love and that made it possible for me to love and give myself to someone else.
My story could go on and on about God's goodness and faithfulness but I’m going to wrap it up with this. Jesus has broken chains in my life and freed me from addiction. He’s purified and restored me and He’s given me clear direction.
He introduced me to a beautiful man who loves God and we are engaged to be married on August 22. In fact, my fiancé was actually the one who introduced me to IMPACT195 and we were able to go through it together and grow with one another.
After high school something was stolen from me. But God has bound me up, and taught me to give Him my body and now I am fully ready to give myself fully to my future husband.
Maybe some of you here tonight doubt God's faithfulness and maybe something was stolen from you. I believe God is saying to you tonight that He wants to and is fully capable of healing you completely and empowering you to live a life of giving and loving others. You can put your trust in Him. He is faithful.”