At the age of 3, my Dad left, and because of his absence, I never knew what it was like to have a Father. I did have my Mother around growing up but at the same time, she was very disconnected to my sister and I, so we found ourselves being predominantly raised by my Grandparents. My family were non-practising Catholics and attending catholic schooling, going to church just for Easter and undertaking my Holy Communion was as much religion as I received growing up. But even though my family classified themselves as Christians, they lived far from it. At the age of 9, I found that I was very mature compared to others my age due to what I became exposed to, understanding that family members in my own home, including my mother, was under the influence of and dealing drugs. By this age, I also became one of the main carers for my grandfather who grew very sick, often making me extremely stressed and anxious. However, with these instabilities and things such as the experiences of loss, trauma, and the development of anxiety and depression, I thankfully never turned to what I saw to be familiar in my surroundings - drugs, alcohol and gambling. Instead, I grew up to be a People-Pleaser, someone who was soft-spoken, compliant and academically inclined. The years went on and I became more exposed to domestic violence, alcohol, suicide attempts and self-harm. This caused my depression to amplify and adversely affected my latter teenage years.
At the age of 14, I started to notice changes in my best friend who I went to high school with. I realised that he had stopped his swearing and dirty jokes. His change in character stood out to me as someone who knew him well, and eventually, he shared that he and his family had recently moved churches and began to attend The Potter’s House in St Marys. I found this intriguing because I knew that my best friend grew up his entire life in a cultural church. Later on in the year, I asked my best friend about church and he finally was able to openly witness and invite me out. I never thought I would actually go as I was very familiar with my Catholic upbringing and not only that, I did not find church a desirable place to hang out as a teenager. Nonetheless, that following Sunday, I attended church and in December 2014, I gave my life to Christ and ever since, my life has been immensely changed.
What I heard the very first service touched me and I actually understood what was being preached and learned so much more about God. I soon realised how much knowledge I lacked. Since surrendering my life, I was able to build on my relationship with Jesus and truly got to know Him on a deeper level. He exposed things in my heart and I was able to deal with deep rooted bitterness, unforgiveness and rejection. I fell in love with Jesus and wanted to do all that I could to be of service to Him and His church. God moved in my family and just under a year after I got saved, my twin sister gave her life to Christ also. A couple months later, so did my ex-drug abuser Mother. By the end of 2016, my entire family was saved. Now as a 19 year old, I still thank God for how much he has moved in my life and even in my family. Numerous times he has brought miracle after miracle. One of the many blessings include seeing my twin sister getting married to a man of God. Had I not stayed on the narrow path, who knows whether my sister would have known God or even be married at this very moment. In 2019, my Mother was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer and this was such a shock knowing that my Mother is young and healthy. But we chose to trust God, and 5 months later, after diligent prayer and fasting, my Mother was miraculously and completely healed. I know that what was meant for evil, God meant for good, and He used this as a testimony of His faithfulness and His power to deliver and to heal. To this day, as a young Christian woman, I can honestly say that it isn’t easy living for God. If it were, everyone would jump on board. Many of the greatest and what felt like the worst trials and testings I have gone through all happened after receiving salvation. But in my weakness, I am made strong, and even in these adverse times, God’s grace and His unconditional love is more so revealed. No matter the circumstance, I have hope in Jesus knowing that there is a glorious eternity awaiting for us in Heaven.
“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”
Romans 8:18 NKJV
Hi my name is Kenny Kura, I was born in New Zealand and first heard the Gospel at a young age through my Mother and Grandmother.
They would often take me to church where I would attend Sunday school and hear stories from the Bible but as I grew older, I decided to live life on my own terms and make my own choices.
I became a father at the age of 21 and that same year married my beautiful wife. On the outside everything looked fine, but on the inside something was missing.
I struggled with insecurities which would often lead to arguments and fighting within our marriage. I turned to alcohol as a way of escape but the problems would still be there the next morning. My marriage was on the rocks and I was searching for answers, for help, for hope.
In 2016 I attended the Potter's House Christian church in St Marys and gave my life to Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ saved my marriage, restored my family and set me free from addictions.
There is a hope in Jesus for you today too.
Jeremiah 29:11 - For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord , “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.