Ellie was drowning in feelings of unworthiness. When she started classes at Grand Valley State University (GVSU) in Michigan, she was excited and hopeful. But it was a tough adjustment. She didn’t know anyone on campus, and she and her roommate weren’t clicking.
“I felt incredibly lonely,” she said.
But you were there for her.
Early on as a freshman student, Ellie connected with Campus Ministry at GVSU, a Resonate partner that you support—but she had a hard time putting herself out there. She had struggled with confidence before, but now she was plagued with thoughts of self-loathing. She started struggling with food too. She physically tried to shrink herself by eating less and less—almost as if she were trying to take up less space in the world.
Just a few months into the school year, Ellie was diagnosed with anorexia. She had tried to hide her eating disorder, but eventually her body started to fail. She landed in the hospital. It was there, while sitting in a hospital bed, that she knew she could not get through this alone.
“I remember . . . realizing that no matter how much I tried to shrink myself, it would never satisfy the hole in my heart,” she said. “I knew this hole was only God’s to fill, and that would be the only way I would feel worthy enough and survive.”
Right then and there, Ellie knew where she could get the help she needed. She would get professional help to manage her eating disorder, and if she ever made it back to GVSU, she would make every effort to get involved in the Campus Ministry for spiritual guidance.
With renewed hope, Ellie started the hard work of recovery. After a month in the hospital, she was discharged and began intensive outpatient treatment. When the next school year started, she was healthy enough to return to her studies—and to the Campus Ministry.
Ellie started attending events, connecting with people, and digging into Scripture. She even stretched herself and went on her very first mission trip! She has met her best friends and roommates through the Campus Ministry—people she can pray with and study God’s Word with. Every step of the way, Ellie learned more about God’s unconditional love, what it means to be God’s child, and what it means to be worthy in God’s eyes.
Thank you for supporting campus ministries like the community at GVSU through Resonate! Ellie, now a junior, is recovering from her eating disorder and becoming more confident in her worth as a child of God.
“There are still days when Satan creeps in and feeds me lies about my appearance and my worth,” said Ellie, “but one thing I am certain of is that God is a faithful God and he chooses us over and over again, no matter how many times we fall.”