Jamaica: After rape, prostitution, former lesbian finds God

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Jamaica: After rape, prostitution, former lesbian finds God

(JAMAICA GLEANER) – After managing to complete a National Youth Service programme, Beverley Walters was placed on job experience in her community for three months. However, she said she could not remain there because she was teased by her former colleagues and peers who knew of her past, so she moved to Clarendon to stay with a friend.

Unable to find a job, she headed back to Montego Bay to stay with another friend. She looks back on that period in her life and described it as living the “Cinderella life”.

Walters said that while living in MoBay, daily she had to climb over a steep hill to go to the river to fetch water for everyone in the household. On rare occasions when there was running water in the tap, she had to get out of my bed before daylight to ensure that all the containers were filled. She was solely responsible for washing, cooking, cleaning and other household chores.

It was then that Walters decided she had to get a job as she wasn’t really living.

“I went in search of jobs. There was a neighbour who bought the Sunday Gleaner every week, so I borrowed the classifieds to search for jobs. I came upon advertisements calling for attractive young ladies. I knew I was beautiful and attractive, so I called.”

That call, she said opened the door to human trafficking.

“I was exposed to prostitution, lesbianism, exotic dancing, drugs and so on. At first I felt uncomfortable doing those degrading things, but after a while it became normal to me,” she confessed.

In a weird way, she said she experienced love and a form of connection, and that saw her continuing in the lifestyle for 12 years.

Walters also travelled to other Caribbean countries living that lifestyle, spending all her money on clothes, hair, makeup and other such things.

“I believed that there was no hope because I told myself I was going to hurt and use every man in revenge for what had been done to me,” she said.

But God had a different plan for her life.

Walters said she started to feel uncomfortable with the life she was living, because deep inside, she knew that there was more to life than what she was experiencing. She said she had been to church and knew right from wrong.

“After transitioning from a ‘low lifestyle’, I migrated to Kingston to settle in 2012. It was at that point that my current bishop reached out to me to revive her dance ministry. I was still dressing in skimpy clothing, wearing jewellery all over my body and had one foot in church and one in the world.”

However, she soon started to drop her bad habits as she said her bishop was a discerning woman and knew what was going on in her life. Walters soon started getting more serious about her new-found faith. During a youth crusade at her former church – Eastwood Park New Testament – Walters met Bishop Letitia McPherson in 2003.

“I was in and out of church trying to find a mentor, because each time I went into prostitution I tried to come out. Bishop McPherson spoke a prophetic word over my life saying I should ‘live’ because at that time I wanted to commit suicide,” Walters confessed.

She said the two bonded and even when she was out in the world, she would encourage her via text messages always ending with “come home”. One day Walters, decided to obey and totally walked away from her sinful lifestyle.

With her walk with God, came new realisation and part of that was how she viewed success.

Walters said before, she thought of success as having a three-story house, driving a fancy car, having a ‘big’ job, spending vacations in the most popular hotels and dining in the most prestigious restaurants.

In 2013 she said she made a vow to God to use her past as a tool to help inspire women who had experienced abuse of every kind, to break the walls of unforgiveness, bitterness, and rejection so that they could be propelled into their God-ordained purpose.

Being a Christian, Walters said she still had a feeling of emptiness and last year she reached out to life coach and mentor, Crystal Daye to assist her in finding her true purpose.

Now a certified Christian life coach and speaker herself, Walters hosted her first conference in the community where her heartache all began – the same area where she was referred to as ‘Mad Bev’. Now, however, she was seen in a different light.

“I launched my coaching business on my 37th birthday, and last year on my 38th birthday, I launched my T shirt line. These were just dreams that I wanted to give birth to but I couldn’t define, achieve and appreciate success until I accepted God and gave Him a chance in my life,” she said.

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