God Stories - Carley Stansfield

Ever since I can remember, I have always felt like something in my life was missing. I blamed it on multiple things including the fact that I didn’t have a present father or the fact that I was severely depressed or the fact that I felt like I would live my whole life in the depth of my eating disorder.

It’s crazy to look back and realize that the one thing I was missing was by my side the whole time. I was diagnosed with anorexia, depression, and anxiety when I was 14 years old. I was a skeleton of a girl who was so beyond what you would call lost. I starved myself because I couldn’t find my happiness. I was diagnosed with bulimia/binge eating disorder when I was 17 years old. I was sleeping for more than 15 hours a day, gaining a tremendous amount of weight, and getting bullied in school. I was still a lost soul.

When I was 18, I started getting involved with the wrong crowd. My eating disorder was still in full swing but the drugs and boys numbed it. I felt hopeless. It wasn’t until I got invited to Christian Life, by my now best friend, that I felt accepted. It wasn’t until I was able to lift my arms in worship that I felt free. It has been a process, but rededicating my life to Christ was never the answer I saw coming. One bad habit after another slowly started disappearing allowing me to regain my life.

I went to my first youth camp in 2016 and I never knew I would experience the life change that happened that week. I heard God in a way that I had never dreamed of. I was set free from demons that I thought would hold me captive my entire life. Fast forward to now, as a 20 year old, I have never felt more freedom than I do in this moment. I have never felt like I belonged somewhere more than I do here. I never imagined the youth ministry would become a second family or that God would use me of all people on the prayer team. I shouldn’t be alive today but by the grace of God and this church, I am not just surviving – for the first time, I’m actually living.