Kiwi’s Story

“I’d erected walls around my heart… He had to break it down to build me back up” (Kiwanda Jardine, 2024).

Growing up, Kiwi recalls constantly feeling like she had to perform. She thought she had to be excellent & perfect to receive love. She felt as if love was withheld from her or she was invisible if she wasn’t succeeding in the eyes of her family. Kiwi shared that what she experienced growing up as a child until her early 20s caused her to put a lot of pressure on herself, and she didn’t realize the hurt it was causing her. Through that season, some words were spoken to/about her by people who were supposed to have her back. She’s forgiven and moved forward, but those words, without realizing it, have become a part of what she began to believe about herself, and she is now doing the work to overcome. Her relationship with God reminds her of who she truly is.

Kiwanda has been a part of our the family for quite some time, but more recently, has felt the strong tug to come back, to dig deeper into her word and to connect heavily in the community. For over a year and a bit, she’s been immersed in church family (through volunteering at the food bank & in care moments) in ways that she genuinely feels loved.

After years of working on healing the injury she’s felt, she’s found the beauty in it all. It hasn’t been easy, and it’ll be a continued journey, but one she’ll do with the Lord. Kiwanda says she “did a lot of giving it over, surrendering it to the Lord…helping to heal me even to this day…coming back to a faith community that knows what it looks like to love has been very, very healing. Like you don’t even realize that you need the healing until you’re being loved, right? I’m now relearning a lesson that I thought I’d learned long ago… There was more healing yet to be done, and it’s a deeper healing now.” It has been refreshing, restorative and messy, but she says we must get into the mess to grow.

Kiwanda expresses, “I erected walls around my heart, protective walls… the Lord had to break them down little by little. He had to break it down in order to build me back up” He’s where her joy comes from.

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