28 August 2017

I did not want to lose my family

For more than 30 years Alice battled to give up her addiction to alcohol, cigarettes and dagga which started when she was 15 years old.

She continued even after she got married and had children.

"I drank alcohol at home and I disrespected my husband. He would come home from work, only to find me drunk. I fought with him and swore at him in front of our children. I also used the money he gave me for groceries to finance my addiction," said Alice.

Her children and husband complained about Alice's bad behaviour, but she did not stop drinking and smoking.

It was after one of her daughters threatened to move out that Alice realised she needed to change.

"She told me that my behaviour was embarrassing them in the neighbourhood and she wanted to move out of the house. I begged her not to go and promised to change. That was a wake-up call for me because I did not want to lose my family. I battled to stop drinking and smoking. I ended up drinking on weekends only but continued with dagga and cigarettes and I sometimes fought with my family," she said.

In 1994 Alice accepted an invitation to the Universal Church and attended services because she wanted to break free from her addictions.

She took part in the chains of prayer on Fridays for deliverance from her addictions and on Thursdays for peace in her family.

 “I was tired of the fights I had with my husband when I was drunk. In my first week in the church I lost the desire to smoke, but I still struggled to quit alcohol. I asked God to change my life so I could be a responsible mother and wife,” said Alice.

After two years in the church Alice was able to stop drinking and smoking.

"I understood my role as a mother and wife, and everything changed at home. I also respected and appreciated my husband. When he gave me money I spent it wisely," she said.

However, Alice's husband fell ill and died. "The presence of God in me taught me to be a good wife and I enjoyed the last days I spent with my husband. I also became a good example for my children and we now share the same faith. I thank God for the deliverance from addictions and the peace in my life," said Alice.