I grew up in a Christian family, going to the Sunday School and learning all about God and the Bible. When I joined the teens group I was quiet and young for my age and I didn’t really make friends. The first year of secondary school was hard for me, as I had quite a sheltered upbringing so had very little to interact with my classmates about. This led to teasing and I retreated into a shell.
The secondary school I went to was on two sites, so in year 10, I had to leave the few mates I had in the year below. The church youth group also changed times, so I didn’t go to church very often. The idea of having a relationship with God had never even crossed my mind.
I became an easy target for the school bullies, and as the bullying got worse, I stopped going to church and the youth group as I thought this was also ammunition for the bullies.
I decided that there was nothing left in my life worth living for. I thought my friends had abandoned me (although really I had abandoned them when I stopped going to church) and my classmates hated me, and so I decided there was no way out except suicide.
One night I was seriously contemplating suicide when the phone rang. It was a mate from church who invited me to join him on a Christian Adventure camp. I'd agreed before I'd even thought about it. By the time I'd finished talking to my mate, my parents and sister were back, and I'd decided, that if I was to end my life, I might as well enjoy myself at the camp first.
During a worship session at the camp God 'hit me', so to speak, and I broke down. I realised that whatever I had been through, God had been there protecting me and providing people to help me. I admitted that I needed God in my life, and I turned from someone who didn't sing, to someone who couldn't sing, but didn't let that stop him. Suddenly my quietness and timid nature had been replaced by a confidence and energy that I'd never felt before
I returned to school the next year, all thoughts of suicide banished. I was re-united with my mates from the year below me. They had made a group of Christian friends and I got involved with a weekly cell group and was eventually asked to lead a small group. From there my church life blossomed, doing everything I could to get involved in Christian life. Soon after that, I arrived to study at the University of Huddersfield where I got involved with the Christian Union and with a local church. I am now growing and moving on with God.