I have felt a calling to be a counselor since I took my very first psychology class. I found learning to understand people very fascinating. With time, I also learned the importance of self-help, through counseling or reading independently. I learned what it felt like to be a client, myself, as I’ve seen many different counselors when obstacles come up in my life. I believe that anyone can benefit from therapy.
I was awarded my Bachelor’s in Psychology in 2001 from the University of Florida, but ended my career before it started when I got married and started a family. It was decided that I would be a stay at home mom. But I still had an inner huger to grow. I continued learning about subjects pertaining to my life at that time by reading Christian books on marriage and parenting, for example. One of my favorite authors is Dr. Bob Barns. I went to several of his marriage and parenting conferences, over the years. There is always room for spiritual growth and maturity, especially as a parent.
Before long, I found that my friends began to confide in me with their problems. I am very outgoing and caring. Empathy comes very easy for me. I’m a good listener, and people sense that they can trust me. They also know very well where I stand, in my faith. Any response I provide will be well grounded in Biblical principals. I may not be very good at quoting particular scriptures and telling where someone can find it in the Bible, but everything I am is based on it. I walk the walk, not just talk the talk. Everyone who knows me, knows my faith in Christ. I don’t believe in hiding it. It defines me!
It wasn’t long before I realized that God had gifted me with a heart for people. God also put me through many trials like infertility, miscarriages, and divorce. Those all seem like very bad things, but I am able to see past that. I know that God has put me in those situations “for such a time as this”. My past is all part of God’s perfect plan for my future. These trials in my life give me the credibility I’ll need to help people who have gone through similar experiences. I will truly know what they’re going through, and I’ll be share my story of how I coped in order to help them to heal. God works all things for our greater good!
I have been through my share of heart-ache, but I am bound and determined to turn my experiences around
to help others. In doing so, I started a blog just before my divorce was final. It is “me” in raw form. I hold
nothing back. It is honest and shows my strengths and weaknesses. It shows that I too am human. I have feelings. I went through DivorceCare, which helped tremendously. It allowed me to go through the “process” to get healthy again. I’ll be able to share everything that I learned through my own experiences.
I feel called to write books in order to reach more people, those who I will never have the honor to meet in person. My blog is my trials in raw form, and it is a work in progress. But one day, I’ll be able to use that material to write a book to help people to cope through their own divorce in a healthy way. It has already helped so many people, some in which I’ve never met. It is public for everyone to see at aboujessica.blogspot.com.
Sometimes I feel like I’m going to explode inside, because I’m so excited about sharing what I have found. Through my trials, I grew 10 times closer to Christ. I learned what depending on Him really means. I truly hit rock bottom. I was at risk of losing everything. He was my only hope. I joined 6 Bible studies a week during that time. I read scripture daily. I prayed with tears of brokenness, and God was listening. He even spoke to me on several occasions. I owe Him everything. He held my hand through every step. He never left my side.
I thought I knew what faith was until I went through this. It’s incredible how far I’ve come. I just can’t wait to share that hope with future clients. I feel like I’ve already been a counselor, as I’ve actually saved a few marriages just this year. I don’t hide my trials. I’m not afraid of allowing myself to become vulnerable. I spoke out in my Bible studies. I wasn’t afraid to cry and show that I was weak. Because of that, women came to me. Many told me they were going through similar things, but were too afraid to share, as I had. I was able to minister to these women. If I hadn’t spoken up about my trials, they would have never known that we had this in common. They are still fighting for their marriages today.
Even though my marriage ended in divorce, I recommend that as a very last resort. Even after discovering my husband’s many affairs over the years, I still gave him 6 months to change, and I waited on God to make my path clear. My whole body wanted to end the marriage right then and there, but God hadn’t released me yet. It is incredible what God can do in your life, when you give it all up to Him. I have the peace in knowing that one day, when I stand before our Lord in heaven, and He asks me, “Did you do everything to save your marriage?” I can say, “Yes, I did.” That is one very important question I ask people when they are contemplating divorce. Yes, Biblically, I had a way out of my marriage, but God still hates divorce, and boy do I know why, especially when children are involved.
I have so many dreams. Dr. Bob Barns is someone admire. I want to do what he does. I want to help people through counseling, writing books, and lead Bible studies. I would like to help to lead a DivorceCare group locally. I’m not comfortable speaking in front of people, but I’d like to try to overcome that. I have a passion burning deep down inside me. I’m on FIRE for Jesus! And I’m not afraid to tell the world! I believe that God is going to use me mightily. Therefore, I can be excited about what my future holds. God is in control. I’m so thankful for what He has done, and what he’s going to do.