My Testimony: Colin Jenkins

Part of the next phase of life after ESPN for me is wanting to tell the inspirational stories of others. So today, I'm debuting "My Testimony." These are the personal stories from ordinary people who have have been used by God to do mighty things. My prayer is these stories bring you hope, love, inspiration and joy. 

This is Colin. He's from Romania and is now serving in the Marines. He's an inspiration to me. I pray he is to you as well.

I was born in Europe, in a country called Romania, on June 30,1998. My mother, gave me up as her child at birth, and the very same day, I was sent to an orphanage.I have never met my parents, or family. The only thing I know about my birth parents is that my mom's name was Danielle. I lived in as an orphan until the age of two and a half, and I was lucky to survive with all the sickness traveling throughout the orphanage I was living in.I was adopted and brought to Chicago.

What seemed like a blessing, being brought into a family, was actually my worst nightmare.For the next 9 years, I was abused physically, emotionally, and mentally by my adoptive parents. I would be sent to my room all day, everyday. It was so hard.They ended up sending me to doctors, who diagnosed me with some disorders like ADHD, depression, and anxiety.They constantly said I didn't matter and I was worthless.They would leave me home and go on vacations. Can you imagine? Leaving a kid alone to go on vacations? Stuff like this happened all the time.

At the age of 11, I came home from school one day and all my stuff was packed, and I found out they kicked me out the house and gave me to a new family.That new family loved me no better than the family before. They neglected me and hurt me a lot of ways. They fed me and met my needs, but emotionally, I was still not getting the love that a child deserves.I had nothing. I came from nothing. I was an orphan. I didn't know who to turn to. I depended on myself for years, and then when I was in the 7th grade,  Benjamin became my best friend. He showed me what love was and brought me close to God.

Till this day, 7 years ago, we are still best friends. He Saved me, he showed me what love was.Through the pain, my faith became strong. Then as is typical with young people like myself, it fell off and I started to track down a dark path. But God was with me the entire time.Currently now, I am a United States marine, and my faith is stronger than ever.I'd like to finish with one piece of encouragement. You're more powerful than you think. Trust God and believe in Him. Always be willing to spread the love of God, even to your enemies!My name is Colin Jenkins, and this is my story.