Growing up in Nicaragua was difficult at times. As a child, Reyna lost her brother to the devastating 1972 earthquake. And by the time she reached her mid- to late teen years, her country was plagued with civil unrest. She describes the dangers that surrounded her family and the devastation of hearing about the deaths of civilians, including children. Though she didn’t blame God, she sometimes wondered how He could let these terrible things happen.
In 1984 she married a young man she had dated for several years. Together they moved to San Francisco, California, where they both had family. After two years of marriage, they had a son. Not long after their son was born, Reyna’s husband lost his job and fell into addiction. She did what she could to help him, but after a time it became clear that she could no longer trust him. Of this trying time in her life she says, “Those days were times of despair for me, not knowing what to do.” She dealt with feelings of fear, but at the same time she was determined to protect her young son and make a living on her own. “It was very hard to end the relationship,” she says.
As she faced the future without her husband, she again wondered why God allows bad things to happen. Over time, God granted her understanding. “People make bad choices, and that freedom to make choices comes from God. He has given us that freedom, and that is why He cannot stop people from doing bad things,” she says. She learned through her experiences that if we are patient, God will one day answer our prayers and bring us peace. Watch part 1 and part 3 of Reyna Aburto’s life story.