Elder Rosemarie Henry
I lived with the mindset that I was unworthy of love and that no one could ever love or accept me. Thinking that a baby could bring acceptance and fulfillment to my empty life, I deliberately got pregnant at the age of 18. The demands of motherhood soon brought me back to the place of feeling alone and unloved, so I kept searching for love. After several abusive relationships and two more children, I was at the point of a nervous breakdown. My older brother had given his life to the Lord, and in December 1994, he called me to say that he had a message for me from the Lord. He said that the Lord could not protect me any longer if I kept rejecting Him, and that the Lord said it was time for me to come to Him. Feeling strongly that he was speaking the truth, I hung up the phone and cried out to the Lord, telling Him that if He was real, He would have to show Himself to me. Instantly I felt like a heavy weight had been removed from my shoulders. God had taken my burdens upon Himself. I started attending Pillars of Faith, where they taught about having a relationship with God. They said I was accepted and loved by God and there was nothing I could do to stop Him from loving me. As I started to study the Bible and apply its principles to my life, I began to experience dramatic changes. My emotional, employment, and financial situations began to change. My children had changed, and even the abusive relationship I was in had suddenly ended without the danger I feared. More than anything, I began to experience the love of God. I know that my identity is in Jesus and that I can always come to Him and He will never turn me away. It is wonderful to know that there is someone who loves me, and that God freely offers the same love to anyone who will accept it.
After being diagnosed with lung fibrosis in early 2008, the doctor told me that I would have only 2½ years to live. He said I would need a lung transplant because the damage was irreversible and no cure exists for this disease. Despite his report, I wasn’t scared or discouraged because I knew that according to the Bible, Jesus took all my infirmities and healed all my diseases. I started trusting him more and more. Though I felt better at times, I got progressively weaker until I was unable to do anything at home. To preserve my energy and continue to work, my husband had to take over everything that I would ordinarily be doing around the house. My boss and co-workers could not understand how I was able to work but I knew that it was only by the grace of God. I then developed rhinitis which triggered an ongoing cough that caused ulceration in my larynx, so now I had to take additional medications which caused more side effects. I was feeling worse and worse to the point that I had to leave my job and go on disability in October of 2010. Despite all of this, I continued trusting God. On June 10, 2011, I was prayed for at a special healing service at my church, Pillars of Faith. The next day I realized I had been healed because I got up early and was able to do things I hadn't been able to do for a very long time: I did chores at home and then went shopping and did other errands. After returning home, I cooked an entire meal for almost three hours without a break yet still felt full of energy. That same night I went to a concert at church and still felt energetic when I arrived home at 11 p.m. At my doctor’s appointment the following week, he decreased the medication because he saw that my lung function had improved. Every day I continue to feel stronger and I'm able to do more and more with each passing day. All glory and honor to the Lord my healer!
Growing up, I was dragged to church once a week by my mother but I never looked at the Bible, prayed, or thought about God. I was bored at church and couldn’t wait for the service to end. As the youngest of four boys, my brothers picked on me and gave me a hard time. After graduating from high school, I stayed home and watched sports all day on TV as a way to escape dealing with people. I felt worthless and was very unhappy with myself. As a teenager, my mother would take me from doctor to doctor to find help for the depression, but nothing really helped. In 1991 I heard about Jesus through my brother Vinny, who had become a Christian. Growing up, Vinny had been mean to me but now he was loving and caring to me and the rest of the family. He stopped cursing and using foul language. Since I had seen such a great change in his life, I started thinking that maybe Jesus could help me with my problems, so I decided I would try Jesus and see what would happen. In 1997 I surrendered my life to Jesus and have never regretted it for one moment. I started attending church regularly, and as I read the Bible and prayed, Jesus took away the depression! Jesus is now everything to me—he is my provider, my healer, my peace. I am growing closer to him every day. I can now connect with people and my shyness is gone. All my depression is gone. I no longer struggle with negative thoughts but now look at everything in a positive way. As I continue to read and study the Bible, my whole way of thinking has been transformed. Now I care more about what Jesus thinks of me than what people think. As I’ve prayed and trusted in him, he has helped me through many difficult situations.
God has been so good to me! Thank You Father for sending your Son to die for me! Thank you for meeting all my needs. Several years ago I was diagnosed with a very serious disease: Pulmonary Atrial Hypertension. It is a fatal disease affecting the lung and the heart. It was mild at that time so I decided to not take any medication. Last year, I started to have difficulty breathing, especially on exertion. I went to doctors who took tests and said I now had severe PAH. I was put on medicaton and oxygen therapy, and stayed on the meds for about a year. Then, I kept getting an impression from the Holy Spirit to go get another test. I made an appointment with a doctor in Great Neck, who then took some breathing tests and felt that I should not be taking the medication. So, he took me off it, and sent me to the heart specialist. She gave me a new test. The technician said he could not see any problems. The heart specialist read the results and said last year I had severe PAH but this year it is mild. Praise the Lord! This disease cannot be reversed. The only thing that can be done (and not all the time) is to prevent it from getting worse. The pulmonary doctor said he was baffled and took me off all oxygen. Praise the Lord for His mercy on me, for His excellent healing and kindness.
Though I grew up in Queens and was happily attending Pillars of Faith Tabernacle in Flushing, within a few years I was married, had a son, and was living in Rockland County. My son, Kevin, seemed unusually quiet, and soon the doctor dropped a bomb in our lives--autism. Worst case scenario, lifelong institutionalization, but it probably would not come to that. The top neurologist in our area said to expose him to kids as often as possible, read to him, and understand that it was still very early and we would just have to wait and see. While life was happening, my walk with the Lord was not. Still, I knew where we had to go. I took Kevin to Pillars of Faith Tabernacle, my true church home. When I told Pastor Vincent and Pastor Teresa what was happening, they gathered the elders and anointed Kevin with oil and prayed that the floodgates of his mouth would open, in Jesus’ name. The Lord heard their prayer. The changes started slowly. He would always say a few words but no sentences, but then his language began to get a bit more sophisticated. We enrolled him in a pre-school recommended by the neurologist and we did all the at-home exercises that we could. After a bit, the doctor said, “dramatic improvement!” Kevin went to regular classes in elementary school but was pulled out periodically for extra help with math and motor skills. Still, the progress was amazing and steady, and he kept getting better. By the time he was in high school he was driving himself to school, had no trouble socializing and making friends, and showed no signs that he ever was developmentally delayed. He graduated with his proper class and continued improving. He went to community college and even made the dean’s list. Now he has been accepted to a four-year college and is ready to leave the nest, at least for a little while. He has an amazing command of world history and easily passes his college math courses. He is taller and smarter than I am, and I thank God for His abundant mercy because by the stripes the Lord Jesus suffered, my son was healed!