#047 – Life Transformation Stories (Part 12). Sometimes people experience something in their childhood that haunts them for many years and manifests in their life in different destructive ways. Meet Reverend Nikki Pearson who shares with us her life journey out of addictions and into the powerful arms of Jesus who healed her and set the rest of her life on a journey of freedom and empowerment to encourage others.
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Stay tuned for our next episode where we will discuss another Life Transformation Story
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Welcome to Transformed by the Word, a podcast about discovering how to live your life with gratifying purpose. God created you for a reason and the Bible contains the keys to unlock your transformed life. Now, here's your host, Debora Barr
Thanks for joining me for episode 47 of Transformed by the Word. I have been so blessed by the life stories of the guests that I've had on the show over the past 11 episodes. If you happen to be joining us for the very first time, you can listen to those past episodes, and hear more amazing stories of life transformation. I find it so interesting that we see people in our lives regularly on our jobs in our neighborhood, in our church community. But do we really know much about them? Everyone has a story. And I recently learned something new about someone that I serve in ministry with that I didn't know before. It is amazing to learn how God works in the lives of people around us every single day.
We live in a world that is not as God had originally intended. The Lord created this world and humanity to live in perfect peace and communion with Him. But something happened to alter the original design when sin entered the world as a result of choices made by the very first humans. And that distorted the human experience. If you want to read about it yourself, check out the story in Genesis, the very first book of the Bible. All of us have been impacted by sin in the world by God through Jesus has created a solution that reconciles us to right relationship with Him. And that is through the sacrificial death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
My guest for today has experienced a powerful transformation as a result of her relationship with Jesus Christ. And I'm so excited that she will be with us to share her story today. My guest is Reverend Nikki Pearson. And she serves in various roles at First Baptist Church of Glenarden, where we serve together in ministry. Nikki embodies determination and faith in all she does. She's learned that we all can live a meaningful life free of long-term problems caused by the issues, hurts and disappointments of our past. Her mantra comes from Romans chapter eight, verse 28. And she says it like this. Absolutely nothing that happens in our life goes to waste with God. He uses it all the good, the bad, and The Ugly, every bit of it to somehow work out for our good and his glory. Thus, she not only teaches and preaches the word of God in practical, applicable ways that incite hope, ignite faith, and empower and propel others to live a breakthrough life. But her life is a testament to it.
Reverend Nikki is also a psalmist, a published poet and author of the book, your breakthrough is up to you. A must read book that traces the woman's story with the issue of blood and her long awaited healing and deliverance from all the problems that one issue caused. Laced within the pages of her story is the testimony of Reverend Nikki and her journey to her long-awaited healing and deliverance from the issues and problems of her past.
Stay tuned. We'll be back in just a moment.
Hey Nikki, it is so great to see you today. I'm glad that you were able to join us.
I'm glad to see you too, Deb. And it's it's an honor to be here.
And I was just sharing with our listeners a few moments ago how sometimes we work with people or see them in our neighborhoods or work alongside them in ministry. And we have no idea the extent to which they've experienced situations in your life. And I can say, looking at you that you don't look like what you've been through, you know that saying they say, I saw something that you posted on social media that led me to reach out to you to share your story with us today. Yeah, so we're in the midst of a series of podcast episodes about life transformation, as a result of people's encounter with Jesus. And you're my 12th guest in a row to share their personal testimony. And I know that you're going to encourage our listeners today. Would you take a moment and help us to get to know you a little bit by sharing some of your childhood and tell us about your family and your upbringing?
Wow, well, I am a native Washingtonian. But I was raised in Brandywine rural MD and grew up in Brandywine Road, raised by my grandparents. My mom and dad got divorced when I was two. And she remarried and had another daughter immediately after. And my stepfather and I didn't get along, even though I was a toddler. We didn't get along. And then one day, my mother saw him touch me inappropriately. And she scolded me, I was a little girl, she scolded me, and sent me to live few months later sent me to live with, with my grandparents, who were absolutely wonderful, devout Christians lived on a farm 12 acres of farmland. And so what I grew up with some issues of abandonment and rejection, because my mom's sending me away when I was a little girl and me not really understanding how she could send me away when he did the thing that was wrong. And, and my real father stopped coming around at the same time. And so I felt rejected by my mom, abandoned by my dad, and those issues, that that developed an issue in me, where I want it to be chosen first. I went on a quest from about eight years old, for years to find somebody who had to choose between me and somebody else.
Wow, young childhood experiences really do shape our lives and can stick with us for a very long time.
And yes, and not only that, they can affect every area of your life. Every area that one situation that happened to me rolled over down through the years, I've dealt in every area of my life.
Tell us a little bit about what did you know about God as a little girl?
Well, because my grandparents were Christians, and like I said, they were devout Christians. They used the almanac to determine how to plant gardens and on trees and all of that kind of stuff. Every every week, we went to church every Sunday. And at that time, it was almost an hour for us to drive to church we were in Brandywine well, and so at that time, but anyway, it was just two lanes, pretty much so but I had to go to church with them every Sunday, my grandfather's sang in the choir. So I went to choir rehearsal every Friday. And then I believe bible study at that time was a Wednesday, so we went to Bible study. And then every every day, they would have me to read the Psalms. They didn't take me too much in the other parts of the Bible. But they taught me about Jesus. And at eight years old. I pray that Jesus would be my friend, and come into my heart.
Wow, that's amazing.
Yeah. I loved Jesus when he was my imaginary friend. Yeah, yeah, I knew that he would protect me. And I think the thing that stands out so much about that, Debora is the fact that when I would go to visit with my mom, even though she was raised in the church to buy my microwave parents, she of course she, like, like so many of us that straight away from the church, but she only taught Heaven and Hell hmm. And her thing with me was always that I was going to hell But it never changed. What my grandmother told me about, about Jesus. I knew I knew that somehow that wasn't going to be so.
Yeah, it sounds like your mom was projecting her own brokenness onto you.
I didn't learn that until I was in my 50s. That that's, that's what happened. Yeah.
So fast forward a bit. How in the world did you get involved with drugs and alcohol?
Well, I was a once I got out of high school and I moved away from Brandywine. I actually moved back to Washington, DC, and had to live with my mom. I didn't have any other place to go. But I started going to clubs after work, started going to clubs and became a club hockey club hopper. Some people said I was allowed this because I started singing with bands and I was singing in these lounges all around the area, we did some travel, I became a potty got gore and doing the early 70s and 80s that the thing was make love not war pass a joint basketball, a moonshine and, and Strawberry Hill Boone's wild wine and, and it just one thing led. I know, but it's true.
I had my own time with Strawberry Hill wine. I haven't heard that in years, but it is bringing back some memories.
But that's that's pretty much how it got started. I mean, my son's dad, because I had a child out of wedlock. So my, my son's father was in the military. So he, he, when he left, the military came home, he introduced me to some of the drugs, but most of it was in the clubs. And it became habit forming because I was singing in the clubs almost every night. And I'm working when I was working every day. And so I drank alcohol, because it made me feel better. It took away the hurts, and in everything and silent shame and guilt that I was carrying. And then the cocaine kept me up. So that I could function at night in the clubs and at work during the day. And that went on for about 15 years.
Wow. So during that time, when that was so prevalent in your life, where you go into church, or what did that look like
I stopped going to church. But church never left my heart. It's so interesting, because Debora when you are a substance abuser, like I was an alcoholic, like I was, there's a lifestyle that's attached to that most often. Especially being in the clubs, too. And being an entertainer. So I was exposed to a lot of the big name into entertainers. But I kept I kept the word that in the back of my heart, I could. There was always something that that my grandmother and him would say, to me, some words, some scripture. That's that's what kept me from going to the farthest edge, I believe. That's all that's all I could say.
So that word was planted deep in your heart, and it was still there.
It really was. Let me tell you people said that. When I was singing in the clubs, they used these people and I that I would preach before I would sing.I was doing rhythm and blues, and jazz. I was even doing some of the old there was a singer called Millie Jackson and her moods, some of the music was X rated. I was doing that. But I always had a story to tell before I signed, and while I wasn't using God or anything like that. It was always something to encourage somebody I would talk about my life, just like I do now on social media, and use my life as an example and then sing a song about it. Wow, it was crazy. It was madness.
Well, you know, God works all things together. Yeah, he Well, no.
Well, yes. Yes.
So tell us how what happened that brought you out of all of that. Addiction and darkness.
Hmm. About the last three years of my of my addictions. I started to feel a pull in me the pull away from that lifestyle is I've never been able to explain it. The songs that I was singing a lot of them I stopped singing A lot of the clubs that I was going into, I stopped going into and more and more, my desire to get high off of cocaine started to diminish. But the thing that happened is in 1987, I know it. Specifically, I took a job as an administrative assistant at a nursing home, never knew what a nursing home was never been in the nursing home, but I needed a job. I was kind of shifting between living out of my car and staying with people at different times in different places.
And I took this job at a nursing home as an administrative assistant. And that lady there took an interest in me not knowing what I was going through, promoted me within three months to be the admissions director, and the admissions director of this 320 Bed premier nursing facility in DC. And her taking that interest in the she chose me first. That was the first thing because it was a big competition for that for that position as the administrative assistant. But then she moved me into that Director of Admissions position, I had no experience, I was fresh off the street, still getting hired, walk around with cocaine in my, in my suit pocket, jacket pocket, and, and have a beer for breakfast before I left my car if I was sleeping in my car, whatever. And, and she didn't know that. But as time went on, I let her know that I was struggling still didn't tell her anything. She helped me get an apartment, she furnished my apartment one block from the job. And that lady nurtured me and, and talk to me, she wasn't a Christian. And they're serving and working with the elderly. And I loved my grandparents, with every bit of my being turned my life around.
But it took a couple of more years because it wasn't until December 10, 1989 When I was standing in a nightclub singing, I was the highest that I can remember ever being drunk wrapped around the microphone stand, singing a song knockin of all songs, knocking on heaven's door. Why I was singing that club, singing that song in that club. I do not know. But while I was singing that song, I heard this voice that said much out, you would do this no longer. And I thought the DJ was messing with me because I was singing that song. And I turned around, he wasn't in the booth kept on singing. And I heard it again, it stopped me. I turned around to see if the musicians were messing with me. When I heard it. The third time, I got off that stage, grabbed my coat and hat. Drought, drove myself home, took a shower and fell down on the floor and begged God to deliver me to take me from that lifestyle to take the taste of drugs and alcohol out of my mouth. And that morning, when I woke up still laying on the floor or my towel. I was freaking that God had taken the taste of a of drugs out of my mouth. I didn't get high anymore after that. The alcohol it still took me about three months to really wean off of that. Because I didn't go to rehab. I didn't know anything about NA and AA or any of that. But that's how my change started. I had a Damascus Road experience.
Yes, you did. Wow. That is amazing.
I remember the night so vividly. That's why I remember the date December 10, 1989 is etched in my in my spirit.
Wow. What happened in your spiritual life after that day?
Wow. It was a gradual change. But there was a hunger and thirst for me, Debora, to know, to know who really this Jesus was and, and to know who God was. And I remember my mother telling me that that I need because my grandfather died. And so my stepfather by the way by bit, but I remember my grandmother kept telling me that I needed to have faith in God. I needed to have faith in God to do the right thing. And God is my witness Debora. I wrote a song called right here in my heart all the time and But as Maverick I recorded a CD gospel CD after that, called Restore my faith. Because one of the things that happened to me, after God delivered me was I went on a search for faith. I didn't know what faith meant I knew the Scripture. And at that time, I didn't know how to research the scriptures. But I literally went on a on a search for faith. And I would ask people, wherever it was that I went, going on vacation, I'd watched different people, preachers. At that time, on Bishop Jake's did a series called woman thou art loosed somewhere doing all of that time. And, and finally, God said, it's in your heart. And that changed the trajectory trajectory of my life when I understood that faith was what I believed, and that I had hold it. In my heart, in my study of the Scriptures, God rebirthed in me, what I knew as a little girl that I was supposed to do, and that was be a preacher,
you were preaching at the mic before you were singing years prior to that, but you didn't know what it was.
And Debora, and I did it when I was a little girl, because we went to church so much. And the neighbors around me and my cousins lived on the land with us. They didn't go to church, and I would come home and set up in the either in the barn or in the field, or wherever we would play and set up bucks. And we would have church and I would pray, play like I was the preacher. Because I can sing so I would teach them all the songs and everything. What see my grandparents were the kinds of questions they didn't believe women was supposed to preach. So they discouraged that dream. Hmm.
Wow. So why are you so passionate about helping other people develop a personal relationship with Jesus?
Because, I know, I know the impact the healing and delivering power of Jesus Christ personally, I can tell you to you from the Bible, but I know it firsthand, the freedom that it brings the peace, and the joy and the security that it brings that you don't have to worry about stuff that you can trust God, you can you can, you can put stuff in his hands and go about your business. I know the joy that that comes when you really know and believe that Jesus has forgiven you. And always has and always will. And I want people to know that they can be forgiven, because a lot of us don't turn to Jesus, or don't turn to God. Because we don't think we're worthy. Because we're ashamed. And we're guilty. And I want people to know that that's not true with God. He takes us just the way we are good, bad, ugly and indifferent. He loves us. He hates the sin. He hates the dirt, but he loves us. I want people to know that.
What would you say to somebody that doesn't want to let go of their addictions and feels like they have to do that first before they can come to Jesus?
Well, I felt that way too. And I have to tell them, God called me out in the middle of my addiction. As a matter of fact, he called me out at the height of my addiction. Again, I experienced homelessness. I went through eight years of physical abuse by my son's father. And I didn't think that God could do anything with me. I thought that I had to clean up my life first. But that's not true. All along, in that, you know, God, listen, God created us before God.
The Bible says God knew us before the foundation of the world. God knew when he created us with fearfully and wonderfully and that's with intent, and purpose. He knew that somewhere along the line because we are flesh and blood that we were going to fall and everybody doesn't follow the same way. Everybody doesn't sin the same way. But God knew that we would be sinners. But yet he still created us because he knew that there would be a time that he would touch our hearts that He created us with purpose on purpose. With Purpose power, he is provision his prayer isn't in His presence, His gift, ever. It's everlasting life of Jesus Christ. So we can know that if we can just put that in our thoughts and in our hearts, God already knew that I would do this. But yet he made provision for me to come back to hear. And he would clean me up, and take me just the way I am. And walk me through that process. Because Because what I learned, what I learned is when God saves us, when we accept Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, and God saves us, that saves us from the penalty of sin, from going to hell. But it's the sanctification part, that part where we live every day, trying to get better and better and better and better. That that saves us gives us the grace and the strength, to say no to sin, it saves us from the power of doing wrong, that all of the devil to do wrong. And it's not only until we get into heaven, that glorification part where we are completely taken out of the presence of sin. And I want people to know that this this walk with God doesn't mean that we're going to do all the right things all the time. It just means that there's a spirit in us a power in us. That's greater than anything else that will convict us and remind us when we want to do wrong, that there's a right way to go. And we can go the right way.
Yes, yes. Yes. Do you have a favorite scripture or life verse?
I really have three. One of them is Psalm 63. And one oh god, you oh my god, early when I seek you, I love for you in a dry and thirsty place where they used to live in a dry place with you as the lead. It just reminds me that that that sometimes they are going to be times when you desire something and you know not what it is a calling for you. You want something greater than what's going on in your life. You want somebody greater, they're just not the answer. And I found out that in those draft places, when we're searching, and we're lacking, that it's God is the deep calling into the deep in us. And so that's one of them. Oh god, you oh my god Early will I seek you my soul thirst for you. My flesh longs for you in a dry and thirsty man, where there's no water. The other one is Mark 5:34. Woman in my translation, woman, you're free to go now. It's your vase that did it. And that comes out of the story with the woman with the issue of blood. And then the other one my all time favorite is Roman 8:28. And I paraphrase it like this. Absolutely method that happens in our life goes to waste with God. He uses all of it to make us better. And he gets the glory for it. That's my favorite.
Yeah, that one is so powerful. They all are. Yeah, and I could glom on to those as as well for what he's done in my life, for sure. Yeah. Well, you share with us a little bit about your ministry. And I know you just wrote a book and we want to hear about that.
Okay, well, um, I wrote a book, Nikki Pearson ministries. Right now we're in the process of I hate to use this term but rebranding, if you will, just doing some things around. So I do have a website. But we're not directing people to it. Right now. It's Reverend Reverend Nikki that that call but right. My Nikki Pearson ministry is a teaching and preaching ministry, that and I even say a demonstration ministry that focuses on helping women to discover who they really are in Christ Jesus. I do that by teaching and preaching the word of God through church services, workshops, conferences, and various events to incite hope in women, Ignite faith in them, so that they can live a breakthrough life and that breakthrough life is one that is free of the long term problems and issues that they have experienced in their life. And that's just it. It's the teaching and preaching ministry, to incite hope and ignite faith in women to empower them and propel them to live in a grateful life. Well,
Well, you certainly are a great example of that. Tell us about your book and how our listeners can find that
My book is called Your Breakthrough is up to You, you can find it on Amazon is going to Internet now there's several places where you can purchase my book First Baptist Church of Glenarden, of course, you can always order it there. Um, you can, you can go online to the website, again, it's ReverendNikki.com, you can go on to the website again, and you can order it there. You can call me and you can you can get it. That's 301-318-4396 that's my business cell. But Your breakthrough is up to you is based on the story, um, in the Bible, the woman with the issue of blood, hence my favorite scripture. It starts at Mark five, and it goes to verse 34. And it talks about how this woman was one with that issue of blood that one issue, how it negatively impacted her entire life. The Bible says that she spent all her money trying to get better, and she only got worse. So it not only affected her physically, it affected her financially, back in that day to have an issue of blood meant that you were unclean, and society ostracize you, they cast you out, you couldn't go to, you couldn't go to church, you couldn't fellowship with your friends. If you were married, you couldn't touch your kids, you couldn't hug your husband, you couldn't have relations. And so it affected her physically, financially, socially, mentally weak, mentally relationally, even spiritually, because she couldn't go into the church for 12 years, she had to experience that she had to be called unclean. Because the issue, that's what people would label you.
So that story talks about how this woman lost her identity, she began to see herself the way others saw her and not the way God so and so I use my story, my life of that one issue, that situation happening to me as the little girl, and my mom was sending me away, and how my issue of wanting to be chosen first negatively rolled over in every area of my life to like ended up being a drug addict, an alcoholic, homeless and a whore. I mean, I'm just being honest, and the whole, but then how I heard about Jesus, just like that little like that lady in that Bible, how what I heard about Jesus as a little girl, we surfaced in my spirit, and in my mind. And just like that woman that went on a quest, to find Jesus to get her healing, I went on that quest and looking for faith, and found my healing. And the last words, that Jesus said to that woman, after she connected with him, was a woman, Your faith has made you whole. Go in peace and be healed of your diseases be made whole. And that's what I believe, happened to me, as well on that night, December the 10th 1989. When God said to me when I got up off that floor, Daughter, your faith did it. Go in peace and be made whole. And so this book follows my journey follows the journey of that work. And, and Debora women all over the world, I'm amazed. On my site on LinkedIn. I've got women on LinkedIn, in France and Africa. I'm in England who had purchased my book, and are often telling me the impact of my book, there are social workers here in the area right here in the area where I live in Lago merlon, who are giving my book out to women that they're counseling and working with. It is a powerful, life changing, but we do workshops. I do it speak it at conferences now.
Yeah. Well, we'll definitely put that information on my website as well make that available to people. Thank you. How can they get some of your music? I know you've recorded some gospel music.
I haven't. It was it was it was a false at the time when I recorded it was a CD and an album really oh the near the Oh albums is eight songs I wrote and produced all but I think three of them because Precious Lord take my hand is on it. And God bless America. The anthem is the last song on the album, but they would have to get in touch with me and we print CDs at a call. So if you give me a call and say I'd like to get a copy of your CD, then we do it that way. If you go on to you to put in Nicky Pearson restore my faith or Nicky Pearson God Bless America or Precious Lord, take my hand. You'll see it there and some of our other new got pink will come up there. To be honest with you. I never. I don't know why I never pressed. Putting that album out. After the first few years it was it was really popular. During the years, the first three years that it was out, Winston Cheney played my theme song, restore my faith on his radio program every morning for several years. And he was the number one morning radio DJ, of the of the country for years. And my song was his was his turtle. And so
well, people can definitely reach out for that. And maybe that's something else that you can resurface.
Well, that's definitely what I've been entertaining. Once school was over, I'm going to take a little sabbatical and a search again, do that search again, to hear more from God, at 70 years old, graduating from Denver Seminary, from a program in Denver Seminary, entertaining the thought of going back for a master's degree. So I'm right now I'm just in the fold of just hearing from God, God, what's the next step? For me because my life is not about me. It is all about doing what I can do for others, so that they can know the saving healing grace of God.
Yes, yes. Do you have anything else that you'd like to share with our listeners, before we wrap up,
just stay the course. Just seek God with, with all your heart, and don't settle, don't let anybody discourage you. With especially nowadays with all the things that people can say about, about believing God, and, and is created to make you a slave in the hope. Seek God for yourself. The Bible says that if you seek Him, and you seek Him with all your heart, you will find Him. And so that's what I want to encourage people to do. Seek God call on his name, call on the name of Jesus and, and you'll know you'll know that voice when He speaks to you. Because it's unlike anything else you've ever heard you'll, you'll know that feeling in your heart is the Spirit of God moving in you. Because this if no drug can make you feel that way. No drink can make no lover can make you feel that way. Seek Him and when you seek Him, you will find here and let God into your life. Because he's a change maker. He's a deal breaker with you and the devil. And once you get in his grip, God says nothing and no man. No one can snatch you out of his will
that's true. Yeah. Before I let you go, would you take a moment pray for our listeners.
I will. God our Father, I just bless you when just thank you. Thank you for Jesus, thank you for loving us so much in the deepest parts of our sin that you still love us like you did before you even placed us in our parents womb. So thank you God that none of our lives are mistakes that we are purposely scarred with a purpose gun. And so I pray that you would touch the the heart and the mind and the spirit of everyone listening to this podcast, wherever they are in the world, whatever time of day, noon or night, morning that it is God, touch their hearts. Speak softly in their ear. Draw them until you got until your saving grace got turn their lives around, that they may become a beacon of light in this world. And they wouldn't duplicate what I did duplicate in so many others. What it is to live a life that's governed by Your grace and your love and your power, your joy and your peace. I pray this prayer. In Jesus name, amen.
Amen. Don't go away. We'll be right back after this short break
We just heard from Reverend Nikki Pearson, who shared with us her story of life transformation. And how she realized that Jesus was the answer to all of her problems when she cried out to Him, and He filled her heart and he transformed her life.
If you've never surrendered your heart to Jesus Christ and asked Him to guide and direct your steps, you could do that right now. By praying a prayer similar to this.
God, I confess that I'm a sinner, and I need Jesus in my life. I repent of my sins, and I turn to you. I believe by faith that Jesus died on the cross for my sins, He was buried and he rose from the dead. And I accept this by faith and invite Jesus to be the Lord of my life. Today, I surrender my life to you. Take control of my life and teach me how to live for you. Thank you for forgiving me, and for saving me. Amen.
Please let me know if you made a decision to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, by going to my website, TBTWpodcast.com and click the link that says Record your decision for Jesus. And I'll be sure to reach out to you and share with you some next steps for your faith.
My prayer for you today is that God would grant you according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might through His Spirit in your inner man, that Christ may dwell in your heart through faith, and that you, being rooted and grounded in love may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width, and length, and depth and height. To know the love of Christ which passes knowledge that you may be filled with all the fullness of God, and that you will know that the Lord loves you.
Stay tuned for our next episode of transformed by the word where we will hear another life transformation story.
Thank you for listening to transformed by the word with your host Debora Barr, be sure to subscribe to our podcast on iTunes or Google Play and connect with us at TBTWpodcast.com. Until next time, be blessed.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai