Tara says her life is “the tale of a broken woman renewed”
A lifetime of heartache followed Tara Leah Pluke after being ripped from her home and sent to a reform school at age nine.
At age 16 Tara was married and spent 18 years in an abusive relationship. She eventually found the strength to leave her ex-husband but her struggles continued with 12 years of working in the bar industry.
"It led to many broken relationships where I dated too many men and was even in a relationship with a woman," she admits.
"I became an alcoholic and abused drugs, I was finished, broken, and I knew I wanted to find healing. I knew I needed God but I was trapped in my addictions and party lifestyle that I didn't want to let go of because I was too afraid.
"I struggled daily with alcohol, pride, drugs and with hatred towards my father for destroying my family. My life was a party life and in that I numbed the pain I carried with me for years."
Tara moved towns seeking a new life and God but fell back into old patterns working in a bar and drinking.
One night Tara was very drunk and unaware that someone was taking naked photos of her 4-year-old daughter, who was being looked after by others. Consequently Tara was arrested.
"When I was arrested, I asked God in the jail cell to get me out and to help me, He didn't get me out but He did help me," Tara explains after her bail was denied.
"I knew Jesus was here I just didn't know how to connect with Him. Here in prison He lead me into a relationship with Him and from my year and a half on trial I learned His Word and became His child. Some days it gets hard but I stay in prayer and day by day, step by step He helps me."
From a woman who was living but dying in misery and hopelessness, Tara has completely turned her life around.
“I knew I wanted to find healing”"I wanted a real life, to live an everlasting life as a real person. It was being arrested that brought me to decide I had to end the dead life I was in. I confessed Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour of my life and now I am smiling inside," she says joyfully.
"When friends and family turned their backs on me God never did - everyone thought I'd be in prison a long time and although my sentence is short, it's time to spend in Christ and grow as His child."
Tara has served two years in prison so far but says she is glad alcohol and drugs are out of her life.
"When I leave here in God's strength I'll remain free. I want to tell others that life without Christ isn't worth it, prison is not fun but it's worth it to spend this time building a relationship with our Father," she adds.
"Life isn't easy but through Christ Jesus we can live a fulfilling life. I believe I'll leave here and as God promised, I'll be restored to my family and I'll work in service for the Lord Jesus Christ." •