Yvonne Ebanks – prayer pulled me through
A saint is just a sinner who fell down, and got up
- Donnie McClurkin
Oftentimes, we hear Christians profess that sin is sin and none is more severe, but that seems to apply only when we are the one sinning. But when it comes to the transgressions of others, we are quick to condemn.
Yvette Ebanks got pregnant at 17 years old. She was just out of high school, a Christian and unmarried.
Churches highly emphasise scriptures forbidding fornication, so it's easy to imagine how harsh they can get against someone who gets pregnant out of wedlock.
Ebanks remembers how terrifying the experience was.
"I was very frightened, and the thing about it is that the very moment I got pregnant, I knew I was. I became very depressed, blaming my dad because he wasn't in my life. And I thought that just maybe if he were, I wouldn't have gone through the things that I went through. I knew that no one would understand me and so I was withdrawn.
"I remember lying in the sofa when my mom demanded that I go and purchase a pregnancy test. I was terrified. She looked at me and asked, 'What are going to do?' and the deafening silence and tears that followed said it all.
"But I was most concerned about what my daddy (step father) was going say. He has been in my life from I was about three months old. He took care of me like I was his biological child. No one could tell even to this day that he isn't my biological father. As grown as I am, I'm Daddy's girl. I went everywhere with him, even when I couldn't keep up with his footsteps, I still want to go with my daddy. I knew that I had disappointed him. And I was scared to face him," she said.
Coupled with the shame she felt for disappointing herself and her parents, Ebanks encountered worst treatment from the place that preached forgiveness.
"When you're in the church, instead of condemning the act and embracing or motivating me to continue to walk with Christ, they condemned me. I eventually went to another church where no one knew me so I felt a little better there," she said.
Ebanks told Family & Religion that the night before she had an abortion appointment she had a dream in which God told her that if she aborted her gift, as she referred to her unborn child, then He would be done with her.
"It (the pregnancy) affected my faith because there were times when I felt alone like no one loved me, but I remember what God had told me that my child is a gift. I pushed on, went to church every Sunday and after I had my daughter I started to get involved in church.
"I prayed. I didn't say much, but tears are a language that that God understands and when I could say something to Him... All I could say was help." She said.
The now happy mother of a nine-year-old daughter revealed that it was prayer that helped her through.
"And the confidence to know when God says He's going to take care of me, He will. I encourage others who may be going through the same thing I went through that it's not the end. Things will be tougher, people will talk about you and they will try to belittle you, but remember that you only live to please God. And if you know that you have made it right with Him then you are good.
"The most important thing is that you are not dead, so if you haven't made it right with your God, then you need to do so now. This experience will strengthen you for the betterment of your life and your child/children. And to the ones who got pregnant more than once, you have to take a stand and say NO MORE!
Tell yourself that "you will live a life that is pleasing and acceptable to God. I'm not saying that you won't fall, but when you get up, brush off, and prove the nay-sayers wrong! And continue to Glorify God!" she advised.