26 September 2018
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Disappointment left me deeply hurt

For three years, Tshegofatso had to bear the brunt of abandoning her Christian upbringing and following her friends who led wild lives.

She was 11 years old when she started attending the services at the Universal Church with her mother. After she completed her matric, Tshegofatso moved to Johannesburg to study for a three-year diploma in Information Technology.

"I shared a flat with a group of girls who drank alcohol and went to parties. They always called me names such as 'the holy lady' because I led a different life from theirs and spent a lot of my time at the church. I buckled under their pressure. I started drinking alcohol and going to parties with them. Later that year I developed painful pimples around my eyes and on my legs. I was ashamed to go to school because I felt other learners were laughing at my appearance," she said.

In 2016, Tshegofatso moved to another flat but continued with her drinking and partying. She completely stopped attending church services and also dated a guy who later cheated on her.

"I was convinced that her loved me, but three months into our relationship, I caught him with someone else at his flat. He apologised and we continued with our relationship, but I battled with trust issues," she said.

Tshegofatso realised she was no longer happy in her relationship and her wild life no longer made her happy.

"I decided to attend the services again and pour my heart out to God. I asked Him to heal me from the pimples that kept growing around my eyes and on my legs.  I was able to quit alcohol, and I continued developing my spiritual life. In September last year, I got the courage to end my relationship with my boyfriend. I am now focusing on my studies and my relationship with God. Receiving salvation gave me the joy and fulfillment I never thought I would have in my life," she said.