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Tuesday, February 20, 2018

HENNA KAUHANEN  HENNA KAUHANEN 

My name is Henna, and I’m from Finland. I grew up in a small country town in a family with loving parents. Being the youngest of four girls, I often felt that I wasn’t good enough, and believed a lie that I was an accident and that my family would be happier without me. My sisters were really close with my mom and they had a relationship with her that I was never able to reach. I was “daddy’s girl,” and everyone in my family knew it. However, my dad worked a lot, so basically I would spend all my days with my mom and see my dad for an hour or two in the evenings before he had to go to bed so that he could wake up early to go to work the next day.

Growing up in a safe and loving family, but feeling that I wasn’t enough, built a lot of anger and anxiety inside of me, which fed into depression when I was a teenager. I had friends and a great family, so I wasn’t alone, but still I was lonely. I started to build a wall around my heart, and I didn’t want anyone to enter in. I had two completely different sides in me: the person I was with my friends - the one who would be happy, smile, laugh a lot, and be “cool” - and the side that I showed when I was with my family, the one that was full of anger, depression and anxiety.

When I was 16-years old, my world just crashed. Our family faced a lot of problems, and my dad made some bad choices in his life which really hurt the rest of the family. One day he came back from work and told us that he was going to move away. It’s weird, but when our family fell apart, God lifted me up from my depression. I saw how broken my mom was, and I had to be there to support her.

My mom became a Christian when I was very young. She would always speak to me about Jesus, but I didn’t want to have anything to do with him, unless I was in trouble. Through the circumstances that our family went through when I was a teenager, my mom would keep telling me how faithful God was. She was the biggest testimony of God’s existence to me. She was so hurt and broken, but still she kept telling me how good and loving Jesus was. I started to attend church with her, and when I was 17-years old, I dedicated my life to Him and was baptized.

After my high school I joined the organisation I’m working with now, Youth With A Mission. During my Discipleship Training School I learned more about God and how personal He is. He showed me that He is trustworthy, loving and faithful and that He wants to speak to me. He wants to have a personal relationship with me. During that time God started to break down the walls I had built around my heart and gave me freedom. It’s still an on-going process. Day after day I’m learning more about Him and learning more about being vulnerable and weak in Him so that He can work through me better and clothe me with his strength.

I moved to Prague just a couple months ago with my Youth With A Mission team. I wanted to connect with local Christians here in Prague and find a church family. Friends of ours, Robin and Roger Harsh, invited us to come to PCF, and I felt so welcomed the moment I stepped in. I’ve been amazed how God is moving in this church, and how people are using their gifts and talents for God’s Kingdom. There’s so much freedom to express yourself, which I really appreciate. It’s only been two months that I’ve been attending PCF, but I already feel like I’m part of the family. Actually I’ve felt that since the day one when I came to this church.

I’m excited to see what God will do in and through this community, and I’m so honoured that God led me to this place so I can be part of it.

Jesus is so good and faithful, and I have to tell that my relationship with my family is now better than ever! Sometimes it’s scary to trust Him and do what He asks us to do, but it’s always worth it. He is able to turn every situation into a blessing. ■

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