What I Didn't Know

My Testimony

I originally wrote this in the year of 1999 in a Journal and then typed it out, I recently found it archived in an old email account. Thank God because that computer is long gone! 
 ( I would have been around 20 years old).

I was in a deep hole, falling deeper and deeper. My Life was caving in. I was not feeling or thinking about anything else but my hurting self. Jesus reached in and pulled me out.

He drew me up out of a horrible pit (a pit of tumult and destruction) out of the miry clay (froth and slime), and set my feet upon a rock, steadying my steps and establishing my goings. 

Psalm 40:2

June 1999, The past 3 months have been awesome.  Since the Friday, two days before Easter my life has done a u-turn in the right direction.  My mind is so full of this awesomeness and I owe it all to God. Since my mind is always analyzing everything I decided to write down everything God has done for me.  To help see the Power of God and to help me walk in the right direction.  I don’t know where to start or what to write.  I’m not writing all of this to make people feel sorry for me about the way I felt or blame anybody for how I felt about myself. The ultimate reason is so I can look at and see my past ways and what Jesus has done for me. 

I remember one day Pastor Kevin was talking about individuals pasts and how they had a "Testimony" of their past life styles.  I remember thinking that I didn’t have a testimony of what God has been doing in my life when you hear other people say "My Testimony". This sounds bad but I wishing that I was bad or had done something so I could have a testimony of Him changing me. Then he said don’t think this way. Be thankful that you don’t have a past like the one’s of drug addiction, ect. Now I’ve come to know that everyone seeking God has a "Testimony" of his love and faithfulness.  

I am writing this to show my doubting self what the Lord has done for my family and myself.  I think a lot of times when people seek God they want their life changed in that moment, instantly.  But I believe if God revealed himself to us all at once, His power, we would be too overwhelmed and our human form could not handle his greatness and powerful presence.  We need more patience and faith to continue seeking him and living for Him as he works in our lives and reveals Himself to us. 

On March 8, 1998,  my Grandma and I went to a Sunday evening service at our
Church.  At the end they asked if anyone wanted to pray and accept Jesus into their lives.  My heart was racing and I knew that it was time to really give my heart to Jesus. I wanted my life to be serious for Jesus.  I asked my Grandma to go with me and she did. With tears streaming down my face we knelt down and prayed. I knew and understood, maybe for the first time, that I really needed Jesus in my life and there was something more to this life than what I had experienced thus far. This was two days before my 19th Birthday. That decision was the best birthday gift I could ever received and it was a free gift. 

About a year later, I really began seeking and desiring even more of God in my life.  It took me another whole year of being a “Christian” to realize that there was even more out there that I desired and needed concerning Jesus.  I wanted Jesus in my life to take away and help me with my past hurts, fears, problems and situations.  I wanted to be happy and have joy in my life.  I never knew I could be happy about this world, others, the future and myself.  There was a lot of confusion in my life that I thought was fine, good and normal. But guess what, that was far from the truth.

My whole life I remember feeling and thinking that I wasn’t good enough in one way or another.  I was always trying to do self-improvements to be something or someone else.  I thought in order to be “happy” or have a “boyfriend”  I had to look a certain way, act a certain way and do certain things. Ever since 4th grade I have been trying to get thinner and keep in shape. I remember thinking if I could just get down to this size and look good then guys would start to like me and I would be “happy.”  Looking back in pictures I was actually pretty skinny but in my mind as I compared myself to others I was “fat” and “ugly.”

I’ve always known deep in my heart that there was something more to life and that made me different because I wouldn’t let myself do certain things. When my friends started experiencing with drugs, alcohol and other stuff.  I wanted so much to be rebellious and experiment, the temptation was there but I wouldn’t let myself. I soon felt that I was the one outside looking in and withdrew myself from my friends.

I became depressed about Life in general. My friends and family thought it was them and that I didn’t like them or love them anymore.  It wasn’t them but they couldn’t understand.  It was me, for there was a battle-taking place within me.  I think I hid it pretty well or tried to from people and hung out with people that didn't ask personal questions. I tried to pretend that everything was fine and dandy but let me tell you I was one miserable person on the inside.  I became so depressed because I thought I had no future.  All my friends in my eyes had a future. They either had jobs or were set to go off to a College after Graduation. I remember thinking I didn’t even want a Graduation Party because I was scared I would cry if anyone said anything nice about me. During this time I would start to cry for no reason in a restaurant, stores and at home. I thought if my family really knew what was going on in the inside they would be disappointed and not like or love me anymore.

I soon became emotionally numb. I couldn’t feel anything and didn’t want to feel anything especially the hurting feelings.  I wouldn’t share my thoughts and feelings with anyone and it made me even more depressed. You see I had my thoughts, feelings and emotions bottled up for so long that it made me unhappy to the point I felt like I was going to explode.  I didn’t know what to do and I felt like I had no one to turn to. I began writing on paper in a purple folder that I had.  This was the only solution I could think of (I recently reread through it and decided to burn it all) I prayed to God to take all those things I wrote about when I was feeling bad or sad.  I would go into my room and write away hoping that it would make me feel better and happy.  It temporally helped but the voidness soon returned.

On Easter of 1995, my Mom, Grandma, my brother Levi, my sister Marlene and I went to church at Calvary Temple of Salem (Now called RelevantLife Church) It felt really good to be going to Church again but I was still hurting on the inside. I didn’t know why I was hurting so much and why nobody was helping or trying to help me. The phrase, “You got to help yourself.” I believe is true, nobody can help you unless you want to be helped.  I don’t think I wanted to be helped. I felt so helpless and hopeless that nothing would ever help me. I was beginning to give up on myself.  I remember thinking “ If there is a God then why am I hurting so much and why isn’t my life like everybody else’s."  I knew I wasn’t ever going to tell anybody, what was going on because I didn’t want to cry and I wasn’t going to go talk to any “Counselor” guy. NO WAY! So I kept quiet and the suffering continued and became even worse.

Thoughts of suicide entered my mind more than once. I know in my heart that I would never have actually done it, but the thoughts were there never the less.  I knew God would not want me to take my own life. I wrote this down in my writings:

"Staring down from high places
I wonder what it would be like

would there be no more hurt?

I know I would never let myself go

There would be no God after the fall."

-Amber Owen

(Update as of 4/12/20: This is what I felt at the time about Suicide, I know God is the judge of our lives and our mental status for reasons we will never know when someone takes their own life. We do not judge and leave that decision in God's hands and in his love and Mercy).

I thank God it was embedded in my mind that suicide was not the answer.  In my case, I wanted something to happen to me. I didn't care what it was. I wanted to be sick, hurt or be in the hospital.  I wanted to feel love and attention. I thought if I became one of these, people would be there for me. Even though I said the prayer of salvation before, it didn’t really mean anything to me.  I wanted Jesus to come back so I wouldn’t hurt anymore.  I knew something had to change because I was tired of feeling this way. "Suicide: A permanent solution to a temporary problem" was a quote I found and had written in my purple folder. 

I don’t know exactly when but sometime after I gave my heart to Jesus, my mom and I went to my uncle’s Church because they had a guest speaker.  At the end of his sermon he asked if anyone wanted to be prayed for or if they wanted him to pray for someone in their place.  I was glued to my seat and I wasn’t going up there. I remember thinking that I wanted to go up there and receive prayer for my Grandma (on my Dad's side). She was dying from Cancer at the time, but fear had a hold of me. Time passed and I saw him looking over to where we were sitting.  He pointed over and said “You should have come up here a long time ago.”  You can guess my heart was racing.  Then a little later he said “ that one with the gum!” (My gum always gets me into trouble). He proceeded to say that I needed Peace in my life. Tears began to roll down my face.  He also mentioned something about my throat area (Update: A couple years later, a nodule was discovered on my thyroid. A biopsy was done and it was not cancerous. I have it checked out every two years now).  A couple days later I was talking to two of my friends about what the preacher told me. I think they thought I was crazy or he was by the expression on their face. But deep inside I knew I needed Peace!

Out of everything I wrote I saved one page from all those writings. I don’t know why but I just did. I was so sad and hopeless. If I only knew then what I know now.  There was a huge hole in my heart.  The void was unbearable.  I was trying and wanted to fill it with the wrong kinds of stuff even though I didn't.  I knew I needed and I wanted to fill those empty feelings with something that I was living with but I didn't know what. I was tired of pretending. I felt like I was an actor in a play. The play was called “My Life.”  I pretended everything was all right in my life (tried to anyways).  I felt that only people close to me had a hunch that something was wrong.  In this ”life” I successfully tried to be something I wasn’t.  I thought if I could only have this, do this, be this, look like this, my life would be “Happy.”  Now as I look back I’m thankful that these people stuck with me and are still in my life even though they never knew any of this.

Looking back growing up, I remember the first time I went to a Christian concert with a friend's Church when I was younger. It was a group called "4 Him" along with Michael English and a Comedian. I remember exactly where we were sitting in the Salem Armory. I think they may have given an Alter Call (An opportunity to accept Jesus into your heart and life) because I remember wanting to do something but I didn’t. I also remember seeing my friend raise her hand to her side during the worship time. Afterwards we were able to get their autographs.

Another time, it must have been that summer of 1994 that my friend and I went to Jesus North West in Washington for the very first time. It was fun and there were tons of people. I remember standing there staring at the big stage and all the people standing waiting for it to begin.  Afterwards, my friend Kathy and I answered the altar call and walked over to the hillside.  But for some reason, we thought we were rededicating our lives to Jesus Christ.

I remember vividly a girl who was standing next to us. She was crying and said she couldn’t or didn’t know how to pray. For some reason I remember that maybe because I didn’t understand what was going on in her life and why she would be crying over something like that.  Later a lady prayed with and Kathy and me, then she asked what church we attended. Kathy told her the name of her church and I explained that my family hadn’t been going to Church since I was really little. She said she would pray that my mom would find a good Church and begin taking us. Like I said before my Mom took us back to Church that Easter of 1995!

My friends Kathy, Suzie, Mary and I went to Jesus North West in 1996 and camped.  We went and had fun listening to the entertainment.  We jumped in the mud and stood in lines for autographs. The next year 1997 (our Senior year of High School), Mary ended up going to a different state so it was just the three of us.  Again we had lots of fun listening and enjoying the great bands.  After we got home, there was an article about J.N.W. and how people including the host Church, Peoples Church of Salem felt that the direction of J.N.W. was going in the wrong direction.  I remember feeling confused because I had seen all the people walking over to the hillside after the altar call was given.  Pastor Kevin our Youth Pastor from Calvary Temple was in the article and said something to the extent that youth were coming to listen to good music and not to seek and worship God.  At the time I didn’t understand what he meant by those words but now I understand. The moshing and jumping up and down got out of control and people got hurt (some serious). 

At the time I didn’t know there was more to being a “Christian.” We should have been there worshiping God with the bands music. Instead we were trying to get to the front row and were standing in long lines to get autographs. But still if young people, young Christians don’t have these options of going to Christian band festivals there’s always secular bands and their festivals which offer them fun and excitement with some hidden costs.  Sometime later we got a letter in the mail stating that J.N.W. would be no longer.  Once again we didn’t understand the logical reasons behind it. We couldn’t believe it and we didn’t know or understand what the true purpose of the ministry was. I started going to many Christian Concerts including Newsboys, Audio Adrenaline and others with my friends.

Sure I went to these concerts and Jesus North West but these concerts and the singers couldn’t and didn’t fulfill the longing that was in my heart.  I knew that there was even more in life then just going to “Christian” functions.  I just didn’t know that my life could be changed forever. My mom got me a bumper sticker that reads a "Expect a Miracle". I can apply this to my life because in a way what I was experiencing was a miracle to the hopelessness I felt so long.

Who knows where I would be if Jesus hadn’t come into my life. I had two options: To be happy and walk by faith or remain depressed and live a miserable, frustrated, little life. For a long time I chose the second one and let me tell you it got me no where but more depressed. I can’t remember all those thoughts that ran through my mind and everything I felt. All I know is that I was a very unhappy person and I was tired of pretending to be something I wasn’t- Happy!

I’m realizing and I have to keep reminding myself that I’m nothing without Jesus in my life. I knew of Jesus but I didn’t know him.  As long as I can remember my mind has thought about my life, the meaning of life, and what am I here to do? My mind has thought why are there people? What was the purpose of life? What was special about my life and why wasn’t I someone else “better”  I’ve always wondered why I could hear my thoughts in my head. What’s so important about my single little insignificant life. I wondered why aren’t there just clocks hanging on a wall ticking and tocking the time away. I would visualize these clocks with wonderment and dwell on my questions over and over. I wanted to be anyone else besides me. I became hopeless about life and didn’t care to live anymore.  I felt so wrapped up in despair and my “world” was all I thought about. I didn’t know what to do or say. So I didn’t do anything, hoping it would all pass away including myself.

All my life I wanted one thing, to be happy.  Growing up I never did anything really bad or too serious.  I was considered a “ good girl.”  I remember thinking why can’t I feel happy? I’m not sexually active and sleep around; I don’t do or deal drugs; I don’t drink and get drunk; I don’t spread rumors or steal; and I don’t cuss too much.  I’m not doing bad things in my life so why can’t I feel good about myself and my life? I was confused and I didn’t understand why I should live or go on living.

One thing I’ve been struggling with my whole life is the fear of rejection. I have this impression that all relationships and marriages are bad or if they aren’t now they are going to be in the future. When someone would take interest in me, I would go along with it for a while because it was attention. But when we weren’t together my mind would run wild with the what if's: What’ going to happen next?, is this going to happen?, Am I going to get hurt again? ect. I couldn’t stand those thoughts anymore so I would end it before it ever started or got any closer.  My fear had a grasp on me tightly and it was all right with me.  I was fearful about all those what if's, rejections, and hurt I’ve seen in other relationships. 

I’ve seen my friends breakups and relationships with guys and the relationships of my family. The solutions I came up with was "If I’m not in a relationship than I can’t get hurt."  I have a hard time letting anyone get close to me or know me.  At the same time I knew that I couldn’t let anyone like or love me until I learned to like and love myself.  My Grandma told me that nobody can like you until you like yourself.  I knew that was true for me because I thought if I don’t like myself then why should anyone else.  I knew when I started to like/love someone because all I thought about was that person. I couldn’t get him out of my mind.  But I’ve realized that now one of my greatest fears is coming true because I can’t stop thinking about Gods love, what He’s doing in my life, my future with God, and how much I’m beginning to feel a love for God. He’s my first love and true love. I’m still struggling with this but I know now that I’m never totally alone in this world and my fear doesn’t have to control me because God didn’t give us a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind.  

At JNW I bought a necklace that says Jesus. I remember one day Grandma said, when we were talking about my friends and guys, she said something about I was the girl with a Jesus necklace around her neck and that probably guys saw that. I’ve had experienced quite often while talking with a guy. We’d be talking and later in the conversation we’d be talking and somehow get on the subject of alcohol and drugs. They will ask me if I’d ever drank or smoked. I’d say “No.” They’d sit there and look at me like I was lying to their face. Then they would say no way and not believe me.  Then they would begin to drill me with other questions, time would pass and they say as a conclusion “You are a good girl, huh?” I’m like I don’t know... (weird expression on my face) “ I guess?”  I should have said if that’s what you want to call it. One time I asked why they couldn’t get over it and he said because it is a rare thing.  

It doesn’t really matter to me it’s just a decision I’ve made for myself and I feel God wants me to keep it.  I don’t need it in my life to feel “happy” or have “fun.”  I don’t know why I didn’t choose to experiment. I just had a deep down feeling and knew that drugs and alcohol wouldn’t help me in the long run. Everyone has that decision to make for themselves because “It’s their life” and they have a choice to make for themselves just like everyone else.  My Grandma recently told me what she told my Dad one time. She said “What would you do if you walked in here (her house) and you saw me sitting here drinking a beer?” That’s what I think about my life and the issue of alcohol and drinking (along with all the other bad things that can occur if drinking becomes a problem.)

The church we have been going to started to dance in the sanctuary and they had already had prayer lines and people where falling down in the presence of the LORD. After our Pastors came back from Pensacola, Florida (Where a Revival had been taking place) This was all foreign and new to me and I didn’t know much about it or that it even existed.  It made me uncomfortable. I kind of became hesitant and defiant and would never go up to the front for prayer.  My mind is very analytical.  I question everything, I want to know how, and why things are the way they are. I analyze and question everything to death because I want to know the reasons things are the way they are. But at the same time I knew there had to be something better out there then the way I was feeling. A lot of people wear masks (not real ones) or put on masks in different situations. I know I sure did. I’ve heard and read about them in Psychology. If people only knew and I wish I knew that I didn’t have to hide behind them and pretend that I was something I wasn’t.

The Friday before Easter of 1999 (Good Friday), my Mom got an email from Siletz (our Reservation) and told Grandma and me about an Evangelist that would be speaking at the Assemblies of God Tabernacle in Siletz.  The three of us went to Siletz, Oregon to listen to him.  His name was Ed La Rose and he is a Native American Evangelist who carries a cross around the world to share his faith with others. His ministry was called "The Cross that Talks Ministries". After giving his awesome testimony about how God has been working through him and how his life has been changed forever.  

He asked for people to come forward to be prayed for. Of course you know I was still glued to my seat. Later the church Pastor came back to Mom and me and asked if he could pray for us. We walked to the front of the Church with him. My mom and I were  holding hands. On the way up I whispered in my Mom's ear that I didn’t want to fall down.  But as you can guess I did! I can’t explain what I experienced, there are no words to explain. This was my first experience of God. I didn’t know I could experience God, the manifestation Presence of God. It was like God supernaturally reached down and touched me. Everything that I had been holding to for so long was gone. It was like a huge brick was released from on top of my shoulders. It was all released and I felt whole and happy. I laid there in the power of the Holy Spirit, crying as my worries left me. I had my left hand over my face.  

Before this night I thought everything was fine and dandy and I had to keep all these feeling, emotions bottled up within me. I never knew there was more to being a “Christian” and that I could be free from my hurtful past. This was the first time I let someone pray for me in this manner. As he was praying I heard him say Give her Peace, free from Depression and of Oppression! Coincidence? I think not!  I had always thought that I had to change my outside appearance to be a “happy” and be a "good" person, boy was I wrong and was I far from the truth. God looks inside at a Man’ heart and not at his appearance like man does. I was also holding onto all my worries about life, my friends, and my family. 

I’m learning to give God all my worries because He cares for us. When I finally sat up, Ed La Rose came over to me and asked me a question. I always think about that question. He said “Do you know what God wants you to do yet?” In my mind I was like What?, but just shrugged my shoulders and said "I don’t know." I was in a little shock, I didn’t know that God was so real and personal that he would let me experience something like this. Ed La Rose then gave me a newsletter and a prayer cloth in an envelope. 

It was good to hear about God and Indian people.  My Grandma and I were just talking about this. America is full of missionaries that go all over the world to share the Gospel to people who need Jesus. But right here in people’s backyards on reservations across America Indian country need Jesus. They are so hopeless and situations are getting worse. We are oblivious to the problems that need to be changed by prayer and a touch of God. 

After that on the web I received some information. The U.S. has the highest suicide rate and among Native teenagers it is 4 times that.  1 out of 4 teens of Indians are problem drinkers by the age of 18.  It stated that "young Native Americans are the most devastated adolescents in America."

When I went to the Oregon Youth Convention with the Church in Pendleton, Oregon a long time ago prior to knowing all of this. They talked abut suicide and then asked if anyone had suicidal thoughts or ever attempted suicide. They wanted people to come forward to come forward to be prayed for. I remember thinking I had these thoughts but there was no way I was going to go up there. My pride and fear had a hold of me. I wish I knew then what I know now.   

I think youth, this generation is ready for real answers because there is a mighty spiritual battle taking place and people don’t even know it. I know I never knew of a spiritual battle, I was oblivious to everything. Now I know that truth and see the light. Everything is clear now. I want to learn more about God and what Jesus can do for my life and also in the lives of my family, friends and others. 

Before I began writing I would be thinking and all these thoughts would come to my mind when I wasn’t with paper and pen. The reason I began writing even more is because all these thoughts are loose in my mind and they need to go somewhere. It’s like a musician, artist or poet, when a lyric, idea or words come to them they feel the urge to sit down and work on it. I have that same urge about writing everything down. Who knows why or what for. Well’ soon see.


It is now Easter 2020, It has been 22 years now that I have been on this journey of life with Jesus. It's crazy to think that my family started attending church again on Easter 25 years ago in 1995. 

God is so faithful and I have learned so much. I had never read the Bible until I was in my twenties. I always believed in God I just didn't know Him and His word. I have been able to read through it several times and in different formats including from the front cover straight through to the back cover of a Student Bible, a "Chronological Bible" where it is in a format as a time line of when things in the Bible occurred and the "One Year Bible". I am reading through the "One Year Bible" again this year. It is amazing that each time one reads the Bible as it is the Living Word of God, we can learn more and more as we bring more life experiences and are going through different things in our lives. We are also at different places in life as we grow older. We go through different seasons of life and just because you become a "Christian", it doesn't mean that your life is going to always be good, exciting and perfect. Often we can experience quite the opposite in some cases. We go through different seasons of life, we go through hard things, we go through things we never thought we would ever have to deal with, We go through things we never saw coming, we go through things that we thought were already taken care of. All of this is worth it knowing and having Jesus in our life and having a personal relationship we know we can make it through the things of life because of Him. He is so faithful and so near even when we don't feel like He is. As we look back we can always see he has our good always in mind. 

"And we now that all thing work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." 
Romans 8:28-29

This Easter if you have not sought after Jesus or began and stopped or feel stuck, lost, hopeless, anxious, depressed, suicidal, I encourage you will all of my heart to seek Him with all that you got. 

"You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:13

Jesus’ death on the cross was the completion of His incredible work of love for all the people who have ever lived or will live. By His death He reconciled those who believe in Him with God, and through His life He opened a way back to the Father for those who follow Him. Through death over sin, Jesus conquered death by being raised from the dead three days later. By His life He gave us life. 

On this Easter Sunday, take a moment to reflect on this question: On a scale of 0 to 100 percent, how sure are you that would spend eternity with God if you died today? 

Reflect on a second question: If you were to die today and stand before God, and He were to ask you, "Why should I let you into heaven?" What would you tell Him? 

What was your answer? We can't earn our Salvation by being good, going to church every Sunday, being kind to others and doing good deeds. Salvation is a free gift, we cannot earn it. ("For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith- and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-" Ephesians 2:8)

What was your answer? Would you like to know 100% that when you die that you will spend eternity with God? Then you can use this prayer to express you faith and decision to follow Jesus:

Lord Jesus, I need you. I want You to be my Savior and Lord. I accept Your death on the cross as the complete payment for my sins. Thank You for forgiving me and for giving me new life. Help me to grow in my understanding of Your love and power so that my life will bring honor to You. Amen. 

I am so thankful that we went back to Church on Easter of 1995. I am so extremely thankful that God revealed Himself to me and I allowed someone to pray for me and was able to feel his manifested presence on a "Good Friday" (when Jesus was hung on the cross) in 1999 and find healing in my heart. God is still revealing Himself to me and is still working in my heart and healing areas that have surfaced in different season of my life. He has plenty to work with as I am trusting God for a complete healing from living with a Chronic Illness and all the side effects that come with the territory. 

I can be 100% sure that I will spend eternity with God, I have experienced healing in my heart and mind in many ways throughout the last 25 years. I can now also include that I have experienced a Physical Healing Miracle when Jesus healed my legs on February 19, 2020 and I was able to walk and not use a wheel chair anymore after being anointed with oil and prayed over. God is faithful. Do not ever give up! 

It is all because of Easter that we can experience any of this!

If you prayed this prayer please let us know so we can rejoice with you as the Angels in Heaven are rejoicing as well. 

"In the same way, I tell you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents." Luke 15:10
Love and Prayers ❤, 

My Favorite verse! And one of the first verses I memorized. ❤❤❤


  1. Praise the Lord.. He is Good ! Thank you God for Amber's Life so she can be my Big Sister in Christ through this life journey! Amen

    1. Amen! Thanks for reading! We will continue to pray for a breakthrough for you! ❤🙏❤


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