Guest Post: From the Pit to the Pulpit by Emily Rose Massey
For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
1 I waited patiently for the Lord;
he turned to me and heard my cry.
2 He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
he set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
3 He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear the Lord
and put their trust in him.
“You are NEVER too far gone for God to use you!” I want to shout from the rooftops almost on a daily basis.
As someone who has experienced the radical love and grace of my Heavenly Father, I want to break the lie over others that they have seriously disappointed God because they have lived less than a holy standard. My passion is to encourage those who struggle with their dark past haunting them and keeping them from living in total freedom by receiving forgiveness through the redemptive work of the Cross.
Although I was raised in church, religion kept me from understanding that I had a Heavenly Father who loved me unconditionally. I wouldn’t have known what that felt like because my father wasn’t emotionally there for me. His struggle with alcoholism and addiction to pornography eventually ended my parent’s marriage when I was just 10 years old. My mother very quickly entered another relationship and all of a sudden, I had another father figure in my life. I struggled with both relationships I was becoming bitter and angry and didn’t know why. At the age of 10 little heart was hardening.
When a door was opened to pornography and masturbation, I was flooded with a feeling that pulled me to seek more pleasure that helped me forget about my anger for a while. I was addicted to the attention and approval of others to such a degree that I would do anything to fill the void in my heart to be loved and accepted. As I grew up, the chains of sexual addiction pulled me under deeper and deeper. Although I accepted Jesus as my personal Savior at 16, I received His forgiveness and lived purely before the Lord for but a moment. I struggled with total surrender, declaring Jesus not only my Savior, but Lord of my entire life. Because the Word of God was not exalted in our home, I was pulled right back under to the same addiction to seeking attention from boys. But no one could know about my dark, tainted soul. Because I wanted to appear like I had it all together, I created a façade of perfection by remaining a straight-A student, becoming a member every extracurricular activity in school, and faithfully attending youth group at my church.
To keep myself distracted from my pathetic existence, I HAD to be overly-committed.
Meanwhile, my sexual sin would continue to grow stronger as each year passed; college became the time of my greatest bondage. At just 19, I got myself entangled in an adulterous relationship with the actor who played my boyfriend in a musical. When that relationship ended, I replaced my “love” for my married lover with another relationship to where I gave away a gift that was meant for the marriage bed. That year-long relationship was a battle, as we both betrayed each other by cheating on one another. The hurt and anger just continued to build. Theatre would help create a fantasy world that I could live in to escape the pain I had in my soul. Acting would become another drug I would use to numb everything. Not only did I hate myself and the lies I was living, but I began to hate others by thinking I was somehow better than them. This twisted mentality would result in running from myself and God and running right into the arms of any man who would hold me (even if it was only for a night). I became ensnared by alcohol abuse and one sexual encounter after the other to the point of where I didn’t even know their last names.
By my senior year of college, I made up my mind that I was going to becoming a famous actress in Los Angeles and make a name for myself. “Everyone will regret how they’ve treated me when they see who I will become!” I thought. I made plans to move to Los Angeles. Roommate- check. Furniture- check. Nanny-job to save up funds- check. But God had other plans, and closed all doors leading to MY plan.
After many years running away from the Lord, I finally stepped foot back into church. During the worship service, I felt God’s tangible presence and heard the Holy Spirit whisper “Welcome home.” I cried out to God that day and ask Him to take my life and do something with it. It was from that moment that my journey back into the Father’s house began. Over the course of several years, because I chose to finally surrender it all to the Lord, God would mold me and transform me into who He created me to be all along- a vessel for Him to flow through and reach others for His Kingdom.
I am now a youth pastor with my husband (who I met at church) and worship leader at our church in St. Louis. I would have never dreamed that God would use me in ministry, especially to preach and teach His gospel. I disregarded His Word for so many years, but through completely surrendering to His hands, He has made me brand new in Christ!
I have recently published a book about my journey on the Potter’s wheel, in the Hands of the Great Potter, called The Vessel: From Marred to Honorable My desire is for others to see a life delivered from the pit and destruction of sexual sin and bondage and transformed to be used for God’s glory and plan!
I long to share with young women a warning to avoid the path that I traveled as well as encourage those who may have been trapped by sexual sin and declare that they can be made new and used for God’s glory and purpose!
You have to just surrender your life completed to the Potter’s hands. He will mold you into a beautiful vessel of honor to flow through to reach others for Christ. Allow Father God to heal you and change you today. The process on the Potter’s wheel is completely worth it, just trust Him.
To learn more about Emily’s journey go to her website: www.EmilyRoseMassey.com