Debbie & Neill’s Story

Debbie and Neill Hart for Alpha-smallMy journey with Alpha

This past year has been an incredible journey for me. I had been suffering with severe depression and anxiety which finally came to a head in March last year. I would never have got through this crisis without the love that I received from my family.  However I still felt dreadfully alone and struggled with the battle that was going on in my mind. I found a school Bible that belonged to my now grown-up son while my sister-in-law was sending me daily inspirational quotes from the scriptures, and incredibly I began to see answers to my problems. I soon became aware of joy and comfort from reading these. This led me to more questions – big questions like “How do I pray?”, “How do I know that Jesus listens to my prayers?” and “How can I know that my sins are truly forgiven?”

It was then that I saw the advert for Alpha at The Church on the Heath. It was a sign when I was looking for signs from God all the time, however my fear of going to Church was still real. My ever patient husband Neill agreed to go to Alpha with me. This was the biggest step I had taken in a long time. The weekly meetings started with a lovely meal which allowed us to get to know the other people, some new to Christianity, some who were Christian but still had unanswered questions and some who were volunteers who helped to lead or put others at their ease. That was followed a talk or a DVD and then a group discussion. I remember that a lot of questions were posed but not all had straightforward answers and I went away with a lot of thinking to do! Due to Neill’s work commitments I had to attend a few sessions on my own but by then I was completely at ease with the group.

Attending Apha was the best decision I ever made and now, nine months later, my life has turned 180 degrees and every day I am excited about what will happen. Depression, anxiety and loneliness are finally behind me.  We were accepted into the Church in April and I was confirmed in May. This has cemented my faith and commitment to being a Christian. I still have trials in my life and I am going through a really big one right now but it’s the way I am handling it now which really matters. Together with Neill, I attend church on a regular basis. I have become involved in a number of volunteer activities at the Church including the Mother’s Union which is where I get my strength. I have also joined the gospel choir although I know I can’t sing but I am having so much fun being part of the group. Neill and I are confident enough to be part of the team putting on the next Alpha and I look forward to meeting others who are brave enough to take this first initial step!

Debbie

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