Before I came to the Dream Center, I was broken. I grew up in a dysfunctional family environment. My mother was verbally abusive and very strict on me. She was an alcoholic and my parents’ marriage consisted of years of arguing and fighting. All of this chaos tormented me as a child. I recall being a very shy, fragile, and timid child.
When I was 14, I was sexually abused by a family member. I was desensitized at a young age of truly knowing what intimacy was. This caused me to feel trapped in a prison of insecurities, a state of feeling less than, afraid and alone. I was awkward in school, bullied by my peers and my siblings, so I would always compare myself to others; thinking everyone else was prettier, smarter, more popular and I was just alone.
As a young woman, I was seeking love and affection in all the wrong places. I distanced myself from my hometown, family, and God and joined the military to get away. I was running away from everything that I knew. I had never done drugs before, but at the age of 26 I met and fell in love with a man that later introduced me to cocaine. I became addicted and with that, came years of abuse, two divorces, homelessness, drug abuse, being sexually assaulted, and I even began to dabble in witchcraft, voodoo, and Buddhism.
I eventually found myself living in my car, VA facilities, and rehabs. I couldn’t keep a job and couldn’t stay sober. No matter how hard I tried, I would always relapse. In my anguish, I reached out to my counselors at the veteran’s hospital, and they told me about the Dream Center.
Since I’ve been in the Dream Center Veterans Program, I finally feel accepted. I can now feel my heart and spirit being renewed, and I can feel the process of God changing me and touching my heart. If I didn’t come to the Dream Center I would still be in my mess of a life. I am beyond thankful to The Dream Center for being a safe haven, a place I can seek God and serve without the trials and tribulations of the outside world interfering.
I would like to thank you, Pastor Jentezen Franklin, for contributing to the Dream Center’s Veterans Program. The Dream Center to me is like Heaven on Earth, a safe serenity, and a place that I can call home. God has loved me back together.
-Penny Cobb Jones
The Women's Veterans’ Home is a ministry of Dream Center’s Freedom House which opened in May of 2018, thanks to the generous support of Jentezen Franklin Media Ministries and our Connection Partners. These veterans are connecting to the life-changing resources there to get off the streets, find employment, and even go back to school to further their education! Without the support of the home, these opportunities would be out of reach for these brave women.