Raised by a single mother in a home that was void of love and trust, Sonya endured years of sexual violence and torture. She learned at an early age that love was only for “good girls” and she was unworthy of it.
“By the time I was 12, I had been stripped of everything that seemed human in my life. I’d been sexually abused from the time I was 5 years old, forced into sexual slavery and tortured by a man that my mother had a relationship with. Then later after finding out, I was beaten and tortured by my own mother. I learned that love hurt. I trusted no one. I was a shell-void of everything. I was no longer human.”
“While other little girls were playing dress up and Barbies, I was being brutally and methodically tortured… sexually…with anything he could come up with to satisfy his sexual addiction. As his thirst for more went farther and farther, so did the secrets, the threats, and the violence. And slowly, with each touch, I disappeared. And nobody noticed.”
“My mom blamed me for what happened. Many times, she would try to kill me. She would physically hurt me to the point of unconsciousness, and then tell me that she wanted me dead. She would use anything she could get her hands on to beat me.”
“She locked me in my room, with no food and would take pieces of the phone with her so that I couldn’t call for help. A mother is supposed to love and protect their child, no matter what. Instead, she told me it was my fault that her boyfriend had hurt me, and that I was dirty, unwanted, and no one would EVER love me.”
“God saw to it that I was placed in a foster home with a Christian family. They took me to a church where I heard about the love of Jesus Christ for the very first time. A month later, at a David Wilkerson crusade, I gave my life to Jesus Christ. I was finally worthy to be loved. Why? Because Jesus said so.”
So what do you do when life throws you a curve ball? Duck? Take the hit? Or give up the game entirely and go home? It’s a dilemma Sonya Brunner knows all too well.
“All I know is…people are going to disappoint us and let us down, but Jesus never will. All of us have crud. It’s how we deal with it, that makes all the difference. I can’t control what others do, but I can control how I respond. It’s a choice. I have to choose how I’m going to respond every day. Is it God’s will or my own?”
“My story is fifty shades of hurt and pain and then Jesus rescued me and changed my life. What Jesus did was create a canvas of love and hope and my life became…Fifty Shades of GRACE.”
“As soon as Sonya stepped up on the platform and took the mic in her hand and started to speak, you had to know there was something more to her than just being a performer! And then when she sat down at the piano, it was crystal clear, it was just her and the Lord. She was not performing for an audience, she was worshiping her Lord, and it was obvious. Everything about her was SO not about her! It is something I have never experienced before.
It was just absolutely amazingly awesome!”