No looking back for Monique Higgs
OLD HARBOUR, St Catherine:
SEVENTEEN-YEAR-OLD MONIQUE Higgs made the decision two years ago to accept Christ as her Lord and Saviour, and she has no regrets.
A member of the Tree of Life Church of God in Old Harbour, Higgs said that before she took her water baptism on March 31, 2013, she had to deal with a lot of negatives surrounding her.
"Persons were setting a time frame on my Christian journey; some were saying that I am going to miss out on my teenage years, among other stuff," she told Family and Religion.
But with a fully made up mind, the Old Harbour Glades resident said she went ahead.
Her decision, however, has not come without its challenges as she faced a lot of peer pressure, where her friends influenced her to go to parties and engage in sexual activities.
"Temptations such as singing and listening to derogative music, also the urge to indulge in conversations that were just not for Christian", were also things she had to try her utmost to avoid.
Her Christian walk hasn't been all about challenges though, she had some great experiences.
"I have met wonderful persons who have motivated and inspired me to continuously be in pursuit of excellence. I have experienced the great joy that nothing can compare to when I worship. Not only that, due to the several positions that were imposed upon me, I have now learned how to express my thoughts and to be bold," she said.
Higgs' involvement ranges from youth leader to choir member as well as drama club and quiz team member.
God's healing power
Since her walk with the Lord, Higgs has experienced His healing power in her life. She said, a few years ago, she was struck with an unknown ailment which resulted in her having symptoms such as diarrhoea, massive weight loss, loss of appetite, red eyes, red urine, and unbearable tummy pain. She was becoming paranoid.
"Doctors didn't know what was happening to me and so I was transferred to the hospital and had to visit weekly for blood tests. The blood tests showed nothing, then a CT scan was done on my entire body and nothing appeared to be wrong with me. They wanted to go as far as to place a small camera inside my body, but my mother decided that I was never going back to the hospital," Higgs said.
Added to that, she was not receiving any medication as the doctors had no idea what was wrong with her. Higgs said she took the matter to the greatest physician - Jesus, and started praying for her healing.
"I had to leave church early at times because of the diarrhoea. It was really hard. During this period, both my parents weren't working. As a result, we were dependent on God. After my mother's decision and the prayers went up, God finally intervened and healed me. Every sign and every symptom disappeared without me going back to the doctor," she said.
After experiencing this breakthrough, Higgs said she made a promise to the Lord that she will never backslide. Today, she is still holding firmly to that pledge.
"The journey is not 'pitch perfect'. Yes, we may falter or fall, but once you hold on to God and work for Him, He will work for you. I am grateful for my friends who have influenced me to serve Him fully. The best decision anyone can ever make is to serve the Lord," Higgs said.