Pastor Tandra QuarlesHello! Let me introduce myself. My name is Tandra Quarles. I am the oldest of four children from my parents Joe and Linda Turner. I have two sisters, Tammie and Adasha and one brother, Billy Joe. I am sixteen years married to Mark Quarles from Indianapolis, IN. I have three beautiful daughters, Shymira, Dominique, and Jamarya and two equally beautiful step-children, Taylor Jones and Devin Petrus. I was born and raised in Southern California, a true "California Girl". My grandmother, Granny, led me to the Lord when I was little and our entire family served in church for as long as I can remember. We are a big family and my Granny was the head of our family. She made sure we went to church every Sunday, every Bible camp, at every conference our entire family was there. Family from Barstow, San Diego, the Bay Area and everywhere else would come.
We were taught that the Bible and every word in it is truth. I wasn't taught about being filled and led by the Holy Spirit. We didn't believe in speaking in tongues or anything Spirit filled. Every question I ever had my Granny answered it with Scriptures. She told me that the Lord taught her how to read and write through her prayer times and the Bible. She would be up at the crack of dawn, drinking her coffee and reading her Bible, faithfully every day. When she died of cancer, everything went to pieces. Our spiritual covering was gone and all hell broke loose in our family.Being in Southern California I had easy access to all kinds of worldly pleasures. I partied hard, made lots of money, lived my way and did whatever I wanted to do. I was smart, funny, sexy and had it going on...in the world. I was consumed with lust. Most people assume lust is just sexual desire but the definition of lust is: 1. pleasure, delight: personal inclination; 2. intense or unbridled sexual desire 3. an intense longing, craving. I lusted for success, romance, love, money and I pursued passionately my lusts. I found the drug "meth" in my early twenties. I used it to stay slender and up all night and day. I worked hard and played hard.
By the time I turned twenty-one, I was married AND separated with two children and had my nursing license. Money was never an issue, men wasn't an issue. I was very persuasive, charming, manipulative and conniving. My children never wanted for anything and neither did I. This went on for years and years...but God! When we say the salvation prayer and ask Jesus into our lives, He takes this serious wether we do or not. Hallelujah ! I had to leave California in 2001 because my life began to meltdown with my new husband. I left him with his lover and moved to Indianapolis, In hoping to start a new life. But of course, I still had the same lusts for the world. I got two good paying jobs and a townhouse and began to live again. Shortly after 9/11, my husband came to live with us. The same cycle started again only worse. I started a relationship with another man. I used this relationship to get what I wasn't getting from my husband. I still worked and made good money but inside I was screaming for help. My body began to become inflamed and my throat swelled dangerously closed twice and I was rushed to the hospital. I was back and forth to ER and doctors offices. The doctors couldn't find out what I was allergic to or what was causing the reaction. My marriage deteriorated and he left us and went back to California. I couldn't take anymore and I attempted suicide. Somewhere in there I started to go to a church at the invite of a coworker. It was a Spirit filled church. They spoke in tongues, prophesied, and boy did they worship! When I took the pills, I called that coworker, now a good friend, and told her to take care of my kids for me.
I drove myself to ER after I started to feel like I was about to die. I barely made it. As the Chaplain was at my bedside and I was drifting in and out of consciousness, something inside of me didn't want to die and whispered "help". Miraculously, I began to regain consciousness and the drugs left my system. The doctors were amazed that no damage was done to my organs. I was transferred to a Faith based treatment facility where I recovered. This was the beginning of my experience with the spiritual realm, good and bad. I was so fragile when I was released 15 days later. I didn't care about the same things I used to, I was surviving, quiet, observing, re-learning. There are numerous encounters that I can tell you I went through where God guided me and protected me during this time but I will expound on them at another time. But I will tell you of two instances, first, I allowed myself to be in a relationship shortly after my release. He seemed perfect, he quoted scripture, was gentle and accepting of my situation, (I told him everything about my hospital stay and how it came to be expecting him to run away from me) but he just wanted to take care of me. Well, wolf in sheeps clothing he was. He was an abusive, violent alcoholic that wanted to use and control me for his purpose.
One night he was drinking at our place with a friend and he began to beat me. He was a BIG MAN, tall and strong. I had never been beat by a man before in my life. During this time I heard a voice inside me telling me to forgive him and it will be ok, I had perfect peace and I put down the knife I had. I made it outside and began to yell for someone to call the police for help. He left and was later arrested for the assault. Another time, his sister, who quoted scripture and talked about Jesus and stuff came over and flipped out cursing and yelling and took back everything she gave us. I was confused and I heard a voice direct me to a Scripture. I went and looked it up in the Bible and it said something about deceiving spirits and something else that I can't exactly recall but it basically told me that there was another spirit in her besides what she portrayed. I knew God was with me even though I wasn't with Him. In 2004, I left and moved back to California after my husband and I started talking again. When I came back, I was different somehow. It was like a veil had be removed from my mind and I saw things and people different. I got a good paying job again and began to rebuild myself. I had new clothes, money, boldness, drugs to keep me looking good and functioning. On the outside I looked like I was all good but on the inside there was anger, sadness, addiction, sexual sin, murder (abortions), depression, mental illness...darkness stirring and rising up to take over my life. In 2006, my life changed forever. I was admitted to a mental health facility on a 51/50 hold that lasted about a week.
Everything was falling apart, my husband left me and moved in with his girlfriend he had been seeing and living with on and off for a year and the state of California, removed my three children from my home. They were now wards of the state, foster children. When I got out, I was angry. I can say that now. I was angry at everyone. I had therapy 3 times a week, a CPS counselor that hated me and didn't want me to have my kids, an unfaithful husband that I wanted destroyed and a government job that I had to return to and hide all my secrets. But you know you can not hide nor control darkness right? It will bubble up and consume everything in you and around you. I was on a mission for about a year or so. I moved out of my four bedroom home because no one was there anymore but me and my demons. I was homeless but I had plenty of money. I began to make a plan of action to destroy everyone involved in the chaos of my life. My family, my husband, my in-laws, my husbands friends, everyone basically was on my list. I moved back to Orange County, the center of all the wickedness in my life. I got involved heavily with the drug trade and made myself the center of everyone's addictions. Before this, I wasn't involved in anyone's business, my husband did what he wanted with whomever he wanted and I wasn't around. Not this time, I had a vendetta out for everyone. In the end, it was to no avail. Nothing changed, my husband didn't come back, my kids were still in foster care and I was still alone, hurt and broken. But God...He didn't forget me nor leave me. Through a series of events divinely orchestrated, I got to the end of myself. It was a night in October '07, I was at my parents home in my room...alone...hurt...angry. Something kept being repeated in my heart but it wasn't clear because of all the other stuff in my head and heart. "I have come so that you might have an abundant life" over and over until I stopped and listened. I said I don't have an abundant life to myself and then it clicked in me and I said only you know how to have that Jesus because I don't.
The room was still and I remember I was writing a letter to my husband telling him everything I felt and how he wronged me. Now I have never had an experience with Jesus, I always talked to God and said in Jesus Name after my prayers. I heard in my heart Jesus say I am here, and I said out loud, "but I need someone I can feel and touch". I kept writing and then for some reason I went outside and stood looking at the stars. I felt the presence of Jesus and I knew He was there. I was shocked and went back inside. I started to proof the letter to my husband and as I was reading everything he did to me, I could see the things I had did wrong according to God. I could see MY SIN. Tears began to form in my eyes and I couldn't read anymore. I began to cry and I could feel my heart turning and tearing and I grabbed at my chest because I thought I was dying. I was crying out loud and I could feel that I was sorry that I did these things and God saw me do them. I can remember thinking to myself later that this is what I wanted my enemies to feel, to feel how wrong they are before God, not me, because my life changed drastically after that encounter. Each day after that, Jesus came to me and taught me, guided me and directed me. He provided ways when there was no ways. He sustained me and showed Himself to me in ways that I had only read about in the Bible.
In January '08, I began a forty day fast and during that fast the Lord directed me to Shiloh Tabernacle Church. I didn't grow up believing in speaking in tongues but the Spirit of God reveals all truth. I was baptized in the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues some time after my fast. I had to be and continue to be stripped of my pride, my stinking thinking, myself, my wisdom and understanding before He could fill me with His Holy Spirit in fullness. The Lord told me to learn, listen and love this place where He has planted me and to grow. He has never left me nor forsaken me. I have many testimonies of His Goodness since I have been here with many, many more to come. Being ordained as a Pastor here at Shiloh is a privilege and honor that only God can bless me with and hopefully man will acknowledge. It isn't the end of my journey with Jesus, it is a new beginning. I pray for His wisdom, knowledge and understanding, His love, grace, peace, compassion and His heart to engulf me as I walk this path for His Glory.Thank you and May God Abundantly Bless You.
Read Pastor Tandra's testimony