On Being Transformed
God is in the reclamation business. Just ask Mandy Vaughan.
About five years ago, when she and husband Jody were at their lowest, Mandy recalls feeling “completely hopeless.”
“When you’re struggling, and in our case, it was people saying things that were untrue, your mind goes in circles. Everything you’ve ever been through, every hurt, every past problem, is magnified. And you’re asking, ‘why is this happening?’ You can get stuck in a vicious cycle. And that’s what feels so hopeless,” Mandy said.
So the Vaughans made a pact, Mandy remembers. “We said, ‘we’re going to do things differently. We’re going to pray together. We’re going to pray with our kids.’”
One of the first things the Vaughans did was replace that vicious cycle of negative thought with the word of God delivered via Love Worth Finding sermons from Adrian Rogers.
“I began to watch Adrian Rogers’ sermons and went to sleep with my earphones in as sermon after sermon played, Mandy explains. “My husband wondered what I was doing and I told him I was listening to Adrian Rogers. So we began to watch Love Worth Finding at night before bed. It was something about the way that Pastor Adrian would talk. His voice had a calming effect when my anxiety was at an all-time high.”
During the day, Mandy plugged those earphones in while on the riding lawnmower, assisting Jody with his landscaping business.
Over time, with the help of LWF and the support of their own local church, the Vaughans experienced greater peace and became more hopeful, even when circumstances were far less than ideal. They found Romans 12:2 to be a living, active, prescription for their situation: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
“God really will change you through his word, and for us, LWF was the catalyst,” Mandy says.
As she began to heal from emotional trauma, Mandy noticed that God was using His word to disciple her as a wife to Jody and mother to their three children, ages 11, 13 and 18. She chose to listen to LWF sermons that focused on her passionate calling to build a great marriage and to raise children with love and firm boundaries.
Her personal interests and her career intersected when, with the help of her 18-year-old daughter, she began caring for small children in her home. This job, in turn, opened avenues for new ministry. She has found God’s good, pleasing, and perfect will for this point in her life, and she is now mentoring other women in Bible studies using LWF resources.
“I know there are a lot of single moms out there struggling with a number of issues. I personally experienced domestic violence in a previous marriage. I reach out to other ladies because I know they need a safe place where they can open up.”
Referring to social media, Mandy says, “A lot of women wear a mask. They don’t know that their struggles and problems are common. I’ve used lots of different resources in the Bible study, including some from LWF. And I point people to the LWF APP. Sometimes you don’t feel like you can call someone, but you can maybe open up an APP and find something helpful.”
“I want people to experience what I did,” Mandy says. “I was in a place where I was struggling and sometimes not even wanting to pray, and I would listen to Adrian Rogers. He was so genuine—no glitz or glamour or lights—and I’d think, ‘OK, I know you’re talking to me. I know my Lord is the One who heals me.”