Ministry Training for Former Prostitute
My name is Jessica Johnson. I was born in San Diego, California on August 31, 1987. My parents divorced when I was six years old, and I grew up with my younger brother and father. My father was a Christian but didn’t teach me to much about to Bible, he would just preach about it at times when I would get in trouble, but I didn’t attend church on Sunday’s regularly. During summer and Christmas breaks, my brother and I would visit our grandmother who lives in Toronto, Canada would try to introduce us to God, but it wasn’t enough for me to have a deep relationship with Him. My grandmother would take my brother and me to church when she could, but I never grasp that relationship with God like everyone else had. My father remarried, and we moved to Lawrenceville, Georgia as that’s where I grew up at. My father got out of the army and became a pilot for American Airlines and within time became a captain.
As I grew older, I started to see the hypocrisy in my father when it came to him preaching the word to me as his walk with God didn’t fully align up to what he would preach to me. My father would commit adultery and had an addiction to pornography. I can remember at three years old witnessing my father having sex with women so that was always a problem, as I would have nightmares or flashbacks so I would try to ask my father but he would always deny it, but I would remember it as if it was yesterday. One summer my brother and I came home from visiting our grandmother and found out that we had a step-mother by the name of Karolyn. I didn’t have a good relationship with her. At the age of 14, I always had this discernment that I never understood. Due to my discernment one day my father and step-mom had gone to the gym to workout, and I stayed home. When I stayed home something told me to attend my father’s closet as I entered and looked into his drawer as I saw thousands of letters written from my biological mother who lives in Tokyo, Japan. After seeing those letters, I had become rageful as I felt betrayed and lied to by my father. Ever since that day I truly felt that I couldn’t trust my father, so our relationship became real rocky.
When my father moved us from Lawrenceville, Georgia to Hawaii Kai, Hawaii and when I went to high school, I was bullied because I talked differently, dressed differently and just didn’t fit in. One day at Keizer High School, again my discernment made me feel that something really bad was going to happen to me as I try to tell teachers and the principal, but no one believed me. As I was in history class, I was jumped by six girls in Hawaii, and I never went back to that school. My father eventually enrolled me in an all-girl Catholic school called St. Francis as I finished off my freshman year.
Again my father moved us, and we ended up living in the Beaverton- Hillsboro area of Oregon. I was 15 years old turning 16 when we moved to Oregon. My relationship with my father started to get bad, constant arguing, emotional, verbal, and mental abuse. My father would tell me how I would be a prostitute, a slut, a whore and that I would have a baby before I was 18. I started to hate my father because he would say some hurtful things to me. I was tired of the verbal, mental, emotional and sometimes physical abuse, so I ran away from home.
As I ran away from home, I ended up on 82nd which is a place where girls would walk the street to prostitute in Portland, Oregon in which I didn’t know. Next thing you know at 16 years old I became someone’s prostitute as I was emotional, verbally, mentally and physically abused severely by this pimp so I can make his money. He would take me to different states to make his money, and I had to make a certain amount, or I would be beaten badly. I ended up getting pregnant so this pimp would try to beat this baby out me, and I would be locked in closets, big candles would be thrown at my face, and I always remember being covered in blood all the time from the pimp punching me in my face. I was so terrified, scared and was so sheltered that I didn’t know what to do to get out of this situation. I was in so much fear that if I tried to leave, he would hurt me severely or even try to kill me. After 18 months, I learned the industry of prostituting and learned how to work the streets. Living the life as a prostitute was very dangerous as I was walking the street, getting in stranger cars and I have come across some dangerous situations with these “Johns”! The streets are where I learned how to survive because my pimp wouldn’t feed me, so I learned to manipulate these tricks or clients.
August 2005 I had the baby and gave him up for adoption. One day I was beyond tired of being abused and making this pimp’s money so I called the police on him so I could be free. Eventually, he went to jail, and I was 19. The police dropped me off my father’s home in Lake Oswego, and I was pregnant again with the pimp’s baby as he forced himself on me because he was high on drugs. The pimp thought he could trap me into having his baby so he could control me for life, but I gave her up for adoption as well. Although I didn’t know God and just gave up two kids; I just said I made a promise that I wouldn’t have any more until I was married.
As I was dropped off at my father’s home by the police and I wasn’t accepted because my father because again he was re-married for the third time to a different woman by the name of Teresa as she had a son the same age as my brother. Due to my lifestyle as being forced into prostitution, I didn’t fit into their lifestyle, so I was told that I had to leave and live in a home for young pregnant women. Knowingly knowing that I was not accepted by my father, I had to leave. I tried to stay in that group home for pregnant women, but after having the baby, I gave her up and ended up prostituting again because I was hurt. Eventually, I started smoking marijuana to stop feeling the pain, abandonment, and neglect. I started manipulating men for what I wanted, and I struggled with prostitution from 19-26 because it became an addiction.
I didn’t graduate from high school as I dropped out at 10th grade, but I did obtain my GED and prostitution was used to survive. I had my apartment, I paid bills like everyone else, but eventually, I started to hate living my life as a prostitute. I got married August 27, 2009, to my husband Matthew but I never really tell him my secret of struggling with prostitution. I became pregnant again, and I had a baby boy named Matthew who was born on May 2, 2012. My husband didn’t know what I did because I would lie until I got in trouble with the law and he tried to help me, but he couldn’t and didn’t know how. Regardless of my addiction, he stayed by me even thru my dark lifestyle.
I had caught my first misdemeanor prostitution charge which allowed me to get my first job as a caregiver so I was happy, but I was still prostituting because I was living above my means and my job wasn’t enough. On May 16, 2014, I had caught my second charge of prostitution because I was short on my rent and I tried to ask my father for help, but he told me to do what I knew how to do which was prostituting myself. I was so upset, so I knew I had no other choice but to go down to Marion County, Salem Oregon to try to get some money for my rent but I got caught by and an undercover policeman.
By now I realized that I had to stop doing what I was doing, but I honestly didn’t know how! I knew it was wrong, but I somehow ended up going right back to what I knew was wrong which was prostituting myself for money. I eventually lost my caregiving job, and then I became homeless, and that is when my life changed. I realized I couldn’t prostitute because I had a child so I swallowed my pride and signed up for low incoming housing, got on welfare and food stamps. My husband stood by my side still, and we bounced from house to house, and with the grace of God, I had my low-income vouchers come in, so I was able to move into my own home.
I got pregnant by my husband again and found out that we were having twins so I had them February 12, 2017, and they was born 29 weeks early. Tristan and Christian stayed in the NICU for 47 days and then came home. Tristan was diagnosed with a mild case of cerebral palsy as his twin developed fine. Tristan and Christian symbolically mean Trust in Christ. Tristan is doing well and slowly healing but yet I wasn’t happy because I was feeling empty or as my soul was dying.
My friend had introduced me to a lady name Betty Campbell who helped me with my walk to Jesus as she bought me my first Bible as I started reading it August 17, 2018. I eventually gave my life to Jesus September 12, 2018, but I still doubted God because I couldn’t see, touch, or hear God. October 12, 2018, I had only $60 on my food stamp card as I needed some formula for the twins, but it was still early in the month, and I didn’t know what to do. I heard a voice inside of me tell me to trust God but in my mind, I was like this is reality how are you God going to provide?! I went into the store as if I was going to purchase these three formula cans as God showed up. I get in the cashier line, and the lady in front me asked questions about my twin boys and then said blessings to me, but I didn’t think anything of it. The cashier tells me that I didn’t need to pay for it and I said shut up! What do you mean? The cashier tells me that is why the elderly lady in front of you told you blessings to you. Right then and there I cried, became sweaty and hot! I knew that was only God! The lady behind me says I’m not sure what is going on, but every single hair on her body was standing up. I walked out the Fred Myers store to look for this lady and as she was putting her groceries in her car. I stopped her, but before I could say anything she says Jesus wants me to tell you to keep doing what you are doing and that Jesus loves you! Oh, I cried even more and started to sweat because the Holy Spirit had touched me. From that day forward I never doubted God, and that was the day I had faith in God.
I had smoked marijuana for 11 years straight all day, every day but one day God told me to stop! I was like how? I’ve tried and failed, but God led me to 1 Peter 5:8 as it said Be Alert and sober-minded. Your enemy. The devil prowls like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour and October 14, 2018, was the last day I ever smoked marijuana. God carried me as I went through withdraws of having major headaches as the THC was being cleared out of my brain. There were days that was hard, but God led me to Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me so when I wanted to smoke he gave the strength to not fall into temptations. As each day passed, it became easier. As my faith started to grow because I was witnessing what God was doing for me and letting me know that I used marijuana to cover my burden. Then God took me through a healing journey to where eventually I was able to forgive my past, my father and myself.
November 22, 2018, I had become extremely sick! I had a fever, chills, excruciating pain and was so miserable. I went to the hospital and was told that I had an abnormal size cyst on my right ovary. I was sent home with narcotic pain pills, and I didn’t want to take those because I didn’t want to feel high, but I did take only two pills due to my excruciating pain. I would pray to God to heal me, and I knew he could, but I was so weak. Betty my pastor and mentor had called me to pray with me on November 24, 2018, and I told her that I’m not sure if I had enough strength to attend church on Sunday, but I’m praying to God that he would. I prayed all night pleading, begging and praying to God to heal me or to give me the strength to attend church on November 25, 2018. I woke up Sunday morning, and I had enough strength to attend church so that I can touch that altar to be healed. When I went to church Betty was shocked to see me, but I made it. The guy preaching that day was Mark Miles, and he had told me because of my faith God has healed me and that I would walk out of the church no longer in pain! When service was over, sure enough, I had no pain. My faith became even stronger and deepened because God had healed me!
The most important day of my life was when I got baptized December 1, 2018, and my life even changed more so. I’m closer to God, I have a war room to which I pray in, my faith in the Lord is so strong, and now I am here at Christian Leaders Institute to get the proper training in ministry. I have a small ministry on Facebook called Changing Souls. I am here at Christian Leaders Institute to do what God has a plan for me, and that’s to minister to others as a pastor. God will provide a church for me one day, so I can change souls so God can redeem, restore and heal them just like He has done for me! Everything that I have gone through was a tragedy, but God will use my journey in the past as a testimony to help others and to help them be saved by our Saviour Jesus Christ.