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God will vindicate you if you wait

Jennifer Smith told me this amazing story. I thought it was a great illustration of the principle that God will vindicate you if you’ll just trust him with your reputation. Ten years ago I was a different person. I was a crack-head and a prostitute. I was walking around the corner to go o…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
Jennifer Smith told me this amazing story. I thought it was a great illustration of the principle that God will vindicate you if you’ll just trust him with your reputation.

Ten years ago I was a different person. I was a crack-head and a prostitute. I was walking around the corner to go out to the streets one night. An officer pulled up to me and signaled me with his siren. He got out of his car and asked me my name. I knew that I had warrants for my arrest, so I lied to him.

He asked me if my name wasn’t in fact Jennifer. I knew I was a goner – he had me over a barrel. He then told me to go to the woods and have sex with him. So I did.
He threatened that if I told anyone, the consequences would be bad.

Well, I did tell someone. I told one of the good cops from the streets that very night. He was so upset that he begged me to go to Internal Affairs. After much arguing and very reluctantly, I decided to go. I pointed the man out and he was astonished at who it was.  

The officer saw me later on a side road and hollered at me to get in his car. I was so scared! I knew he knew that I had turned him in. He cussed me as he drove me deep into some woods. And there he raped me. Afterward, he again threatened me, telling me that he was going to kill me if I said anything else about it.
I have never been so petrified in my life!

Coincidentally, I saw the good cop again that night too. I ran from him. He caught up with me and knew instantly that something had happened. Things progressed pretty quickly at that point. Before I knew it, I was giving statements and had got a lawyer…. only to be laughed out of the system. My witness was nothing to them.

For weeks and months, I hid out of fear. However, since the case went nowhere, the “problem” eventually went away. That is simply street life – survival.

Ten years passed and, out of the blue, a lieutenant called me. “Years ago you filed
charges on an officer, and now we have more information on that case. Ms. Smith, we believe you, and we
are sorry for all that happened to you.” WOW! It was a ghost in my closet that I thought the door had been shut on. I could have cared less for that door to ever be opened again. As far as I was concerned, I had truly forgiven this man and moved on by years!

But no, God never forgot my innocence, fear, or pain! I was His child, and He wanted to vindicate me.

I flew home to meet with a state’s attorney and the captain of internal affairs and all the others in the system who had degraded and rejected me. The system had identified me for years as the hopeless crack-addict and #G06524, but God said, “Jennifer, I have your name written in the palm of my hand!”

They asked me to testify in court on the state’s behalf and subpoenaed me.

My head and my heart were racing. I met up with my accountability group and my mentor for dinner that night. We all went to my room to cry and pray. These are the people, from years ago, that help me press through the pain and release the rape from the beginning, and they were here for me yet again, in disbelief that this was happening.

When the day came, I could barely breathe going into room C3. There he was to my right. Interesting how my eyes were drawn to see him first. Oh my goodness. He looked exactly the same. Sadly, I will never forget that face.

I looked to my left, and sitting there were some officers, along with the captain I had come to know. Also, there were a couple of other prostitutes sitting there – the man’s sex addiction had progressed from the rape – he began paying prostitutes.

Again, my breath was taken away. I looked at the prostitutes, and I recognized them all. So tarnished! So ragged. I started gasping, literally, at what I had been delivered from! Here these women were still a part of the streets. They were there when I arrived to the streets, they were there the whole time I was on the streets, and there they were STILL on the streets. I was there for almost eight years. In November, I will be off for eight years. That is 16 total for them – one was in her late fifties and the other her sixties. My goodness! HOW?

Well, the officer ended up changing his plea to guilty! He then proceeded to turn to everyone and apologize for what he had done. I didn’t get to hear that apology. They were late getting me to the courthouse. I was very mad, to put it politely.

End result, he was pronounced guilty. He is never allowed to practice law enforcement again. The punishment seemed small, but I really do thank God that I have NEVER gotten what I truly deserved!

I had to ask God what in the world all of this was for. Why did I have to go through all of this again? It shook my life up… yet again.

I prayed and waited for a Scripture. God answered me with Isaiah 41:9-13. “All those who were incensed against you shall be ashamed and disgraced; they shall be as nothing, and those who strive with you shall perish. You shall seek them and not find them- those who contended with you. Those who war against you shall be as nothing, as a nonexistent thing. For I, the LORD your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.”

God also told me that even though the system may have seemed to fail me, He was always there looking out for me. He sees the end from the beginning, and perhaps, this still isn’t over.

After the hearing, several of the law enforcement agents came up to me introducing themselves to me and said, “Ms. Smith, if there is anything in the future we can do for you, don’t hesitate to let us know.”

That day, July 28, 2009, eleven years later, I was vindicated!

Forgiveness. I’m still shaking my head

Comments (54)

  • I am so touched and blessed by your testimony… I know your Father is proud to have you for a daughter… you’re in my heart, my thoughts and my prayers…

  • Ahhhhhh… Jennifer, I love you… and I am so touched and blessed by your testimony… I know your Father is proud to have you for a daughter… you’re in my heart, my thoughts and my prayers…

  • “I don’t care where you’ve been sleeping, I don’t who’s made your bed
    I already gave My life to set you free;
    There’s no sin you could imagine that is stronger than my love,
    And it’s all yours if you’ll come home again to Me.” (Don Francisco)

    “He who harms you touches the apple of His eye.” (Zech 2.8)

  • AMEN, AMEN, AMEN! Isn’t God so awesome!?

    Hardly ever on our timetable, but always faithful in the way that we need to do what He wants to do IN US! Working EVERYthing out for our good (and for others’ too) … My little email devotional from Richard Rohr today was about the role of suffering and pain – i loved this line “If we do not transform our pain, we will most assuredly transmit it.” Thank God, Jennifer’s pain was transformed through a trust in God that He would do something good in her life and by God’s grace, she was able to forgive a heinous abuse (and other abuses too since I know some of the rest of her story). I’ve only met Jennifer by phone (so far!) but I love this gal – it doesn’t take but a minute or two to see she is transmitting the beauty and love of God and not an ounce of bitterness. God willing, she’ll be headed down to my home this weekend (pack your bag, Jen, i’m thinking God is going to deliver that money you need to fix your car 🙂 …

    Forgiveness is one of the most beautiful words in the Bible to me… we all doubt that it can work out so well in our own lives (I know I was feeling a little doubtful last night), but HE IS FAITHFUL and this story is a remarkable reminder.

  • Waiting for God’s time can be very difficult… but if we pass the test, we’ll have a fresh testimony of God’s wisdom.

    I love stories that end like this.

  • Amen, Jen! Our Abba is so faithful to be our counsel (emotional, spiritual, and LEGAL) and comfort throughout all of life’s journeys. I know your testimony and the love of God in you is touching people everywhere you go–glad to call you my friend :-).
    In thanksgiving for vindication!

  • Wow Jenn I love you so much! It’s amazing to see what God has done in your life and the transformed women you are. You are such an example of an amazing woman of Christ. Thanks for sharing this story… I still can’t believe what God has done in you so beautiful!

  • I’m trying very hard to find a certain verse in the Bible that tells us “when someone hurts us, don’t take our own revenge…Take it to God and He will take care of the matter.” Can someone out there tell me where it’s found?

  • Hello Seth…Actually, that’s a good verse however, that’s not the one I’m looking for. In the verse, it tells us Not to take revenge on the person who hurt us, but to “release them to God” and let Him do the repremanding to that person. Thanks Seth!

  • I have recently left the church I attended for several years, suspecting that someone has lied about me there and spread rumors about me. I have felt like the outcast for a long time there, but I know in my heart that my faithful God will vindicate me. He knows the truth and will come to my defense in His perfect timing. The scripture in Psalm 23 is one of my favorites, that He will prepare a table for me in the presense of my enemies. When He vindicates us, He makes sure our enemies watch Him do it. But we must never try to vindicate ourselves. That is His place alone. This woman is a great encouragement to me. God bless you and may He continue to use you to bring encouragement to all that have been treated unfairly.

  • Thank you so much for sharing your story of God’s great grace and love for mankind. I am touched deeply also by your perseversance and for passing the test. I’m sure God will continue to use you to bless many others by teaching them the way of the Master. God Bless You!

  • I married my husband against the wishes of my in-laws because I am elder to him. Till this day they have not accepted me….He is my first and only love and they think that I am the one who set out to bait him…. they donot acknowledge my presence in his life till now even after one year of marriage, My husband and I stay separately because he works for the family business which is in a different town and I am working in a different town…. It is hard…. he says he loves me but doesnt stand up to his parents. I am not demanding that he fights with them…just a firm reminders that he is married to me in the presence of God. I donot want to give up on my vows. I understand that they donot accept me and I know that the Lord will touch thier hearts but I am disillusioned with my husband’s weakness….I feel being treated like a mistress ….I have surrendered all to the Lord, but sometimes it gets too much. I need your prayers .

  • I feel your pain deeply and want you to know you WILL be vindicated. My mother in law was my first experience with evil. She was so jealous of me, I was completely blindsided by her meanness because my Mom and I were always so close, and my husband would never stand up to her, mainly because she had never allowed him to become a man and stand on his own. We divorced because of this, but guess what.. he started dating someone who looked like me, and she was so p***** off that she had a stroke, and he has since broken off with the rebound person and admitted he screwed up his life by losing me. I have moved on and am happier than I have ever been. Our God is a faithful God.

  • This morning vindication came. It took 2765 days from when the lies and deception began and 2596 days from when the false accusations started. My advice, Forgive, in your anger do not sin, with God’s help it can be done. The victory and the fruit of integrity will be yours & and indeed sweet.

    He will restore everything that the enemy has taken from you. He did for me.

  • thanks very much for posting this

    this helps me a lot, especially it is so relevant to my life right now.

    good to know He loves me and He will help me.

  • romans 12:19 A couple days ago I was verbally attacked by a male co-worker and talked to the worst any man has ever spoken to me. totally unwarranted. I was in total shock and wanted to leave the office immediately, however, I stayed remainder of day and worked the next day. I took days vacation today and have taken nerve pill and stayed in bed most of day. I have cried out to Jesus I hate this man for the hurt he inflicted on me and to please validate & vindicate me. I plan to keep my distance and never engage in any conversation every again. I could file a complaint and probably get a forced apology from him, but with only two years till retirement, I won’t put myself through that. Pray for me.

  • Thank you for your courage to post. I found this by accident, but it was no accident. God’s timing for me to see this was perfect. Thank you again, and God bless you for your courage and faithfulness. 🙂

  • Thank you very much everyone for sharing your stories. I am encouraged to read it. I have been in so much pain because of actions and words of my own sisters and mother. But after a lifetime of trying I give it up to the Lord. I will explain myself no more and the Lord will vindicate me. I know the Lord brought me to this site. God bless you all.

  • This is great – just what I needed. Currently have a relative who is very active in their church spreading lies about me and trying to twist everything that I have said. Years of jealousy on their part seem to be fueling the fire. Have turned my vindication over to God and so glad that Jennifer got her justice, even though it looked like they had the upper hand.

  • Valentina Williams

    I’ve been wronged ALL MY LIFE, I love GOD, I live right and have integrity. However, as an African American, I’ve NEVER SEEN JUSTICE. I’ve been falsely accused, lied on and abused, but the wicked ALWAYS got away. Pray for me. Thank you and God bless you.

  • This testimony truly blessed, I have been crying out to God for vindication and recompens. I served in the US Army and was serially and physically abused. PTSD. ALSO a whistle blower. Let’s just say people were not happy with the truth I was telling. I also whistle blowed on several government agencies. Hacked kicked off Internet for 2 years. Robbed identify stolen by several government agencies. The VA HOSPITAL GAVE ME 27 PILLS A DAY. I know God has healed a lot in my heart I forgive them all.

  • This testimony truly blessed, I have been crying out to God for vindication and recompens. I served in the US Army and was serially and physically abused. PTSD. ALSO a whistle blower. Let’s just say people were not happy with the truth I was telling. I also whistle blowed on several government agencies. Hacked kicked off Internet for 2 years. Robbed identify stolen by several government agencies. The VA HOSPITAL GAVE ME 27 PILLS A DAY. I know God has healed a lot in my heart I forgive them all.

  • going through something right now. it is so painful i can not describe it

    i just want it to be over….

    i dont even have the strength to ask or look forward to vindication

  • I am a license social worker but quited working to take care of my family and to be a full time mother, but then I think I made a wrong decision, my husband doesn’t give any money to me for our everyday expenses, every two weeks we buy our supplies foe the whole two weeks and nothing else he will provide. Everytime we go to our church or go somewhere else, he is complaining why I am wearing a out of style simple Loose clothes, he will also complain why I don’t make my self pleasant, I just can’t complain back that I have no money to satisfy his needs in terms of my appearance. I remember one time that we went to the market and I gety one brand of soap because I can feel that my skin is drying out and he is complaining a lot with my looks, so I picked my own soap to somehow meet his expectations and pleased him and also take care of myself, but he got mad at me for having my own brand of soap that I will use for 3mos. for a price of 21Pesos. I was really pissed of that time that I felt I was deprived and belittled. He also don’t left any many for me andour daughter to have snacks for the whole day he is away to work. I feel that I am in a terrible marriage and life, I feel little becauae of his attitude, he doesn’t says sorry for his mistakes and shortcomings, he doesn’t want his mistakes to be point out, even when I’m telling him that he is hurting me with his attitude he will response “that is my attitude, I have no control of your reaction or your feelings, if you felt hurt or pained because of my actions, bear with it, you chose it, I can’t do anything about it”. We are one and half year married and I suffers a lot with him, from being economically deprived to experiencing him commiting adultery foe three times, his bossy attitude, he that doesn’t say sorry for his mistakes, he you wanted our second unborn child to be abort and others. Until now I am praying for God’s vindication in me. I am waiting for it. Everyday I cry for it and hoping one God will give it to me.

  • Yeah waiting on his timing is the most difficult of it all. I have been accused of so many things which aren’t true and lied against in a way that has ruined my reputation completely. Now i have no one to turn to but God alone. I feel so lonely at times with no one to talk to because nobody believes anything i say. I’ve cried to God to vindicate me so many times because he’s the only one who knows the truth.The pain of having my name slandered and being told that i’m not even born again has been great and as a result it has made me completely withdrawn. I’ve been alone for quite sometime now and i plan to continue staying this way until God delivers me from this kind of trial. I have never engaged in prostitution which are the lies that are going round about me, I cant even picture myself committing such a sin against my God and neither have i ever been raped. All my life, i’ve only had sex with one guy and that is the truth that i hope will one day come out. I have even contemplated suicide because of it but the reason i couldn’t go through with it because i know that it will take me straight to hell so i’ve just been asking God to give me the grace to persevere and go through the trial until the day he’ll decide to intervene.

  • i reailly hope your testimony is true, because i need some validation right now that God really sees and He does vindicate us by removing our enemies teeth and claws so they can hurt NOBODY NO MORE. and EXPOSE THEM AS LIARS AND SLANDERERS IN FRONT OF THE WHOLE WORLD.

  • may the merciful and wonderful God bring you healing and be your protector and vindicator as always.

  • I need to say something about my broken heart. I had my 18-year-old granddaughter living with me for a few months because she wanted to she would smoke pot should have people over her boyfriend over she had an abortion about two months ago.
    I told her she would have to move back in with her mom or dad because I couldn’t do this anymore. The next day she asked me did you take my money?
    I said no, where was it and how much? She said it was in her safe but it wasn’t locked and she really didn’t know how much money.
    She said she was saving that money for speeding ticket that she had gotten. I really didn’t think anymore about it because I thought maybe she missed placed it or whatever and then she told her dad which is my son that I took it and she knows for a fact that I took it.
    Nothing made any sense at all but I thought either she spent it and didn’t want her dad to know or her boyfriend took it so let’s blame it on grandma and they will love her anyway.
    Needless to say she’s not here anymore she said some horrible things to me and the sad thing about it I feel alone from my family because I used to be like that like 20 years ago.
    God brought me out of that I know my family wants me to go back there I’m brokenhearted I’m so hurt I need God to heal me I need him to vindicate me I pray every day that he will.

  • Carole… I am so sorry… I too have been betrayed and had false accusations.. from church people and a daughter who wanted to hurt me because I did not give in to her demands… I have cried for 3 years and trust really no one.. But waiting… is what I am holding on to.. I wanted to vindicate myself so many times in the flesh.. But it has to be the Lord who sustains me or I would have..
    He is a rewarder of those who seek him! Hebrew 11:6…

  • Kath, Its a year later and I hope you are still there. Forgive this man, I believe when we forgive we allow God to work and vindicate us. Do good at all times and at the right time Good will prepare your table. Pray, pray like your life depends on (it does actually), be cautious of your words, start thanking God for a turn around, for vindication, for freedom from pain and suffering. Everything God allows to happen in our lives is all part of His plan for His glory! Be brave, be strong and stay in prayer. God loves you! And that’s all the love you need my sister.

  • Pastor please pray for me work has been difficult I have people who hate me for no reason and they would do anything to see me fired. The man I loved betrayed me and he is now friends with those people it’s hard for me to face life it’s hard for me to go to work and have to deal with the insults to people at work I’ve become a fool and a topic please pray for me I’m tired

  • It’s been 14 years since my sister slipped into a court date I wasn’t notified of and gained guardianship what’s my youngest of three daughters without my knowledge. It took me eight years to find out they were false accusations against me still took today I’ve never seen the file so don’t even know what I was accused of. It took me 6 years to discover my sister’s husband was a registered sex offender and his mother was friends with the woman judge took me about 5 years to find out that the woman judge I had that evidently her husband had a problem keeping his hands off little girls and the county swept under the rug and didn’t prosecute him and also that he beats on her so I had a woman judge who is mentally and emotionally unstable. And here it is 14 years later and I don’t believe that God’s going to vindicate me anymore nobody believes me and I’m just really given up any hope or desire to live anymore. I’m not suicidal but if I was diagnosed with cancer it would be a relief. I’m just tired of this life. That really doesn’t bug me what does bug mean is I’ve got another daughter living with me who is disabled that I need to take care of because nobody in my family stuck up to protect my other Daughter Alexis so who’s going to take care of this one if something happens to me? No one. And I just don’t have the motivation to move forward in life I’m slipping so far in the depression this just sucks. I’m getting tired of people telling me what God’s going to do and what he’s not going to do every day I see people getting prayed for that don’t get healed and they were commanding in the name of Jesus that this person was going to be healed and they believed it within every fiber of their being and they’re still not healed. I’m coming to find out that a lot of the things that I was taught that the Bible says are true. I’m just sad I want my daughter back and I want the truth to come out I can forgive but nobody’s asking and my sister still running around slandering me to people I don’t even know what she saying but nobody won’t even respond to me I just hate this life I can’t wait till it’s over

  • Don’t lose faith our stories are kinda different but also very similar. For me it’s my brother took my oldest daughter from me at the height of her teenage rebellion years slandered me called me names they were only nice when they wanted something and if I said no then I was the worst person. My middle child he turned against me as well they gang up on me lie about me call me names I have a youngest child that sees them for how evil they are and I try my best to live for her. The pain is excruciating because I have not done anything to warrant it but loved them and allowed myself to be stepped on. I am waiting for God to vindicate me also. I will pray for you please pray for me. Your not alone if you read 2nd Timothy God talks about what people will be like at this time and that is what we are encountering even in our own families. My mom was an abusive alcoholic that taught my brother and family members to treat me badly. But God has never left or forsaken the righteous. We are chosen ones in each family there are underdogs/scapegoats that get the abuse of the whole family but weeping endures for a night and joy comes in the morning. Please be encouraged I don’t know you but I love you and feel your pain and I pray right now in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth our lord and savior and by his blood that we both have vindication and that God would make our enemies our footstool. Amen ????

  • My brother ..Barry has robbed me blind . He forged my signature on legal documents to sell family property. And he doped up our mom on pain pills(she has a problem with her hip) and talked her into doing things as we’ll.
    I made the mistake of spitting in his face, I know I should not have done this and let god work out this situation. Take my advice everyone let god fight your battles he is much better at it..lol god is good if the bible says he will do it …he will do it.
    P.s pray for me and my family.
    Thank you.

  • I will pray for you, Jo Ann…

    Rest and let Jesus comfort you. He knows.

    I was struck yesterday at church by the reading from the OT that prophesied how mercilessly Jesus was hounded and attacked by the proud men of his day.

    And it reminded me of his suffering at the hands of men, not just physically, but verbally.

    He knows, Jo Ann.

    Lean on Him and let Him comfort you.


  • I will pray for you, Valentina. God sees and shares in your suffering and the Psalms tell us that He has saved every one of your tears in a bottle. Blessings and love, Judith

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.

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