Out of Chaos, Life is Found : Alison Trefry
Hi! I’m Alison Trefry, and I am honored to share my story on OurCityOnAHill. I am a Huntsville native, and am the Development Director at Lincoln Village Ministry, an incredible non-profit located in downtown Huntsville. My husband and I are members of Rivertree Church, and I have the privilege of teaching 2 year olds about Jesus each Sunday which is a highlight of my week. I am married to Brian Trefry, and we have a precious son named Weston who is the light of our lives. I would love to talk with other women who are walking through, have walked through, or are considering walking through an affair. It’s really my heart to minister to you if you’re in that situation. I pray He can use my journey to help others. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Out of Chaos, Life is Found
I grew up in church and was surrounded by a loving, Christian family. I was baptized as a baby, confirmed in 7th grade, attended youth group, sang in the choir, and went to Young Life. During elementary school, I suffered through a traumatic experience. A part of me broke, and my spirit died. Before that event took place, I was outgoing, fun, and carefree. Afterwards, I was anxious at all times. I could not spend the night out away from home, and my parents took me to a child psychologist. I was scared and felt very alone. I had no idea Jesus was right there with me, longing for me to turn to Him.
I was popular in school, made good grades, and played sports. I had a great group of friends, went out on the weekends, and had a boyfriend. Despite outward appearances, I was in despair. I hated myself. I felt fat and unattractive. I was crippled by social anxiety. I was depressed. I didn’t know Jesus.
In college, I kept up the same routine. I was in a sorority, maintained good grades, and came home to see my parents often. However, I was empty and hollow on the inside. I was struggling more than ever before with my self-hatred, and was incredibly hard on myself. I developed disordered eating, and turned to alcohol, boys and friends to fill me up. Jesus was not a part of my life.
After graduation, the cycle continued. I moved to great cities and had amazing jobs, but I was still miserable and anxious and alone. I never felt good enough. I didn’t feel loved or accepted or smart. I was very quick to anger, was extremely judgmental of others and myself, and did not easily forgive those who I felt harmed me in any way. I wanted Jesus at this point, but didn’t know how to “get” Him.
I met an amazing man, told him about my past, and finally felt accepted and loved. We got married, had a baby, and I suffered from debilitating post-partum depression. Soon after the birth of our child, my step-mother and my husband’s mother took their own lives within one month of each other.
I was more lost than ever. I was numb. I shut down, and did not know how to process my feelings. I ached for a connection with my husband. I wanted him to comfort me, to fix me. I placed entirely unrealistic expectations on him. In hindsight, I realize that only God could have filled those empty spaces in my life. Every single person will fall short of providing what only God can, but I was expecting my husband to be my savior.
That led to me being angry and basically checking out of my life, my marriage, and my family. At the time, I had no thought of going to God. Sadly, another avenue presented itself and I entered into what became a two month extra-marital affair. I hit rock bottom, and almost lost my family. I had to look my husband in the eyes and tell him I had been unfaithful to him. I had to sit down with my family and tell them that I had been lying to them for 2 months, and was not the person they thought I was. I sat down with my closest friends and told each one of them what I had done.
In that rock bottom place, close friends and family spoke truth into my life, prayed for me, cried with me, and loved me. That was the beginning of God showing me grace. I met Jesus in a very real way for the very first time. After a specific conversation with a friend at Starbucks one night, I invited Christ in to my heart to be my Lord and Savior. I can honestly say that at that very moment I finally got it! I knew something huge had happened. I felt a peace and a lightness that I have never in my life experienced. The old me was gone – good riddance to her! I was born again, forgiven and pure.
Isaiah 43:18-19 – Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness, and streams in the wasteland.
2 Corinthians 5:17 – Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old has gone, the new is here.
Practically, my life started to look different. I started pursuing my husband. I stopped partnering with thoughts from the enemy that told me my marriage was over. In time, my amazing husband, whom I had devastated and hurt so immensely, forgave me. My marriage is now new and better, redeemed and restored.
Proverbs 31:12 – She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.
Psalms 147: 3 – He heals the brokenhearted, and binds up their wounds.
I am much less quick to anger and am no longer judgmental of others. I forgive more freely. I am participating with Christ in His transforming work in me. I have surrendered my life to Him. I see the small blessings in each day, where before I was so self-focused that all I saw were my perceived shortcomings. Out of that, I am able to experience great freedom and joy. God made me. I am beautiful in His eyes. When He looks at me, He doesn’t see a worthless sinner. He sees Jesus! I am white as snow in my Father’s eyes!
Luke 12:32 – Fear not, little flock. For it is your Father’s pleasure to give you the kingdom.
Isaiah 26:3 – You will keep in perfect peace the mind that is dependent on you.
Although God forgives and loves us, he despises sin. But my sins no longer have a hold on me. I am forgiven, and a true example that God can redeem even the worst situations. My sins and yours are nailed to the cross. Covered by the blood of Jesus. It’s a gift we are all able to receive! Amen!
Colossians 2:13-15 – When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.