Jennifer’s Story Is Proof That Brave IS Beautiful
Written by Project Inspired | March 16, 2015
As you know, we here at PI are always on the lookout for women who astound, motivate and move us. Today, we have the great privilege of adding yet another name to that list.
Meet Jennifer Zeulner.
Jennifer was studying at a junior college in Southern California when, in the summer of 2000, she decided to withdraw. Sensing that her calling lay elsewhere, Jennifer chose to serve at a youth camp in Colorado instead. She hoped that this opportunity would bring her closer to God—to a life rich with purpose and meaning. Her journal housed the following prayer:
“Use my life for your great purpose, Lord.”
She was 20 years old.
Two weeks following her arrival at camp, a bottle of cleaning chemicals erupted in Jennifer’s face, the sulfuric acid resulting in second- and third-degree burns that covered her eyes, face, neck and arm. The damage? Seven days in an intensive care unit, followed by a 23-day stint in a Los Angeles burn center. For the first three days, Jennifer was blind. Her sight would return, but her physical appearance was completely transformed.
What Jennifer had to say about her experience will astonish you:
“On the outside, the situation appeared to be hopeless. I really did feel bad for the people who had to look at me. But inwardly God was doing a miracle.
“I knew all the while that God was using my experience to answer my request I had journaled about [in] years prior. My heart was broken at the feet of Jesus and seeking Him was all I wanted and needed…
“…In that moment, I chose thankfulness. Everything else had been stripped away. It was during this time that God truly captured my heart and showed me what true beauty and the value of your soul is all about.
“I give God all the glory, for what He did drew me to Him. Jesus had come to restore, renew and capture me as his own!
“There are days when I long to go back to the clarity of my hospital bed where God’s love was so tangible. After more than 30 reconstructive surgeries over a three-year period, God had healed all things both inside and out. Because I experienced God’s goodness at work through my own story, I’m compelled to continue to share the truth about what true beauty really is, and there is nothing more beautiful than a heart set free through a relationship with Jesus Christ.”
Jennifer had confronted the ultimate challenge—a challenge that was not only fierce, but visible to the world.
And we applaud her for her courage.
With unwavering faith, Jennifer transformed tragedy into a gift, catastrophe into a blessing, and from adversity she drew strength. Her story is cloaked in a silver lining, and we’re so grateful that she chose to share it.
>> Interested in reading more? Catch the full story HERE.