Reason to Trust #26 [Sam]

Sam MacPhersonAge: 42 // Favourite Food: complete organic whole-foods nut!  Will probably die with a chunk of haloumi in my hand 😉 // Dream Job: Personal shopper – if shopping was an Olympic sport, I’d win gold for Australia // Current Season: Senior pastoring Calvary Christian Church with husband James; parenting twin 9-yr old boys Joe and Ben; living in Townsville but also pastoring campuses in Cairns and the Sunshine Coast, so LOTS of travel! // Met Jesus: 20 years ago, as a very accomplished sinner, working as a cop on the Gold Coast // Favourite Verse: Psalm 139 always undoes me – He had a plan, even when I was dancing on bar tables! // Instagram: @sam_mac

 You don’t normal envisage an exciting new season in God beginning with a snotty session of foetal rocking on the couch, but there I was.  What catastrophe had put me there?  A list of expectations, both real and imagined, that scrolled through my head as we prepared to take on senior pastorship of Calvary Christian Church in Townsville.  Not, as some may suspect, the lack of a department store within a 4 hour drive (…although that was pretty horrendous too!)

 What I was experiencing was a crisis of confidence, and in the most epic of fashions.  It was actually pretty embarrassing.  Have you ever had one of those moments?  When the ‘rational you’, tucked up in a corner of your brain, is looking down on ‘psychotic you’ with horror?  I knew was being completely irrational, but that didn’t make the fear I was choking on feel any less real.

 ‘They’ll expect me to be perfect/inspirational/smart/eloquent/gifted/intuitive/parent-of-the-year’, I sobbed to my husband.

‘Hon, all I want you to do is run a weekly ladies coffee meeting,’ he soothed as he edged slowly towards the nearest exit.

‘But I’ll SUCK at that’, I wailed. ‘I don’t even LIKE women’s meetings!’  OK, that part was true.

‘Babe, don’t you think that God has planned this season out for both of us?’ he rationalised.  But I couldn’t see it.  My focus was solely on my own inadequacies and insecurity.

 The weekend before we flew into Townsville, we were in New Zealand where James was speaking at a conference.  The other keynote speaker was a man I’d not met before.  Nor did Martin have any idea of what was going on in my world.   Towards the end of conference, he grabbed me between sessions and said, ’Sam, I don’t know if this means anything to you, but God told me to pass you this message.  He wants you to know that who you are is what they need.’  And with that he wandered off.

 I plonked down on the couch in the green room like I’d been slapped.  I hadn’t brought my fears to God.  I hadn’t prayed.  I hadn’t trusted.  I had thrown a tantrum and dwelled on ‘worst case scenarios’.   I’d acted like I was dong this new season alone.  I’d ignored all the training and life experiences that He had woven through my life to perfect me for this very moment.  I felt ashamed.

 But in that moment, the Holy Spirit welled up in me like a warm hug.  God was my greatest supporter and I was smack in the middle of His will.  These new challenges were not hurdles but God’s vote of confidence in me.

 Was I able to feel that way consistently from that point forward?  Ha, nope!  But I made a decision that day.  If God Himself told me ‘who you are is what they need’, then my job was to believe it.  God was releasing me to be my ‘best self’, nothing more and nothing less.  Some days are easier than others, but I never stray from the mantra God gave me that day.  It’s now my life message, and I’m grateful for the experience that provided it.

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Reason to Trust #25 [Christina]

Christina DellarAge: 25 // Favourite Food: Anything that comes from the ocean and Mexican. // Dream Job: What I am working towards now… full time makeup artist and online magazine. // Current Season: The season where you can almost feel your faith muscles grow! // Met Jesus: When I was 5. // Instagram: @christinadellar // Website: www.frecklesandblush.com & www.frecklemag.com

My story with Jesus is exactly that… a story. It has bad chapters, funny bits and pages I regret. But no matter what chapter I am at, I am consistently amazed by who my Lord is. I mean my jaw drops when I learn yet another new side of him that I had never known before.

For so long in my life, Jesus was a man with a beard in a robe. He was nice. He was a goodie too shoes. I was a mess and He was perfect. I don’t know where these weird images of Jesus came from (I blame my children’s bible) but I could never shake the image of Him just being all… soft. God was the man in the sky, who was the boss. He was also a little… soft.

One of the big life changing moments for me was when I was going through a particularly hard time. My trust had been broken; I was feeling lacking in every way as a woman. I was sad… a deep, in my gut type of sad. I did what was instinct and reached for my bible and turned to Psalm.

I was drawn to Psalm 18 and it shocked me to my core.

In my distress I called to the Lord;
    I cried to my God for help.
From his temple he heard my voice;
    my cry came before him, into his ears.
The earth trembled and quaked,
    and the foundations of the mountains shook;
    they trembled because he was angry.

I started to read and my eyes were drawn to one word. Angry. Wait God was angry? But why? Then I read on.

Smoke rose from his nostrils;
    consuming fire came from his mouth,
    burning coals blazed out of it.
He parted the heavens and came down;
    dark clouds were under his feet.
10 He mounted the cherubim and flew;
    he soared on the wings of the wind.
11 He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him—
    the dark rain clouds of the sky.

Ok He is ticked.

I mean have you ever heard of such anger? He is hiding under darkness… I didn’t even know God could do that. There is fire coming out of his mouth… that’s fierce anger. So I keep reading. He keeps being really, really angry for a while and then I read what my soul had been longing for.

16 He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
    he drew me out of deep waters.
17 He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
    from my foes, who were too strong for me.
18 They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
    but the Lord was my support.
19 He brought me out into a spacious place;
    he rescued me because he delighted in me.

In a moment when I was feeling very unloved I met my Lord for the first time. I knew Him but I didn’t know what He was like. He was my hero. He was my Saviour. He was tough!!! He wasn’t weak, timid or just up in the clouds. He loved me and had rage towards anyone who tried to hurt me… and why?? Simply because He delighted in me.

I have never known anything so beautiful.

So here I am years later and I know my Lord. I have grown so much since understanding that He is strong and powerful. My husband and I are making big changes in our lives to follow what we hear God telling us. Changes that involve me packing my home, and leaving comfort.

Changes where I can feel my faith growing. Faith through tears and pain. Faith where God says one thing and my bank account another. A kind of faith where I am not scared to go on an adventure with God because… drum roll please….He delights in me!

So don’t even try to touch me or you will have my Lord to deal with… and He can get angry!

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Reason to Trust #24 [Sandy]

Sandy HopkinsAge: 40+ // Favorite Food: Dutch salted licorice // Dream Job: not sure, but definitely something that involves expanding God’s Kingdom. // Current Season: Being a mum & working part-time. // Met Jesus: At the age of 22yrs whilst traveling the world. // Favorite Verse: I have lots, but Jer 29:11 always speaks to me in whatever season of life I’m in…“For I know the plans I have for you, declares The Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” // Instagram: @shoppysandy

I made the decision to ask Jesus into my life at the age of 22yrs & stepped into the grace & abundance of ‘the God life’ without a clue of how big & faithful this amazing God is.

The dream I had for my life could be described as the ‘Suburban Fairytale’. All I wanted was to fall in love, get married, buy a house & have babies.

The suburban fairytale started falling into place, all except for the last part – children. Things didn’t turn out quite the way I expected or wanted! To date I have had 14 pregnancies, 13 miscarriages & I have 2 children.

After 2 consecutive miscarriages I became pregnant with my first son, who is now 22yrs old. I was over-joyed & thought that any health issues I had were now behind me. Another 2 miscarriages soon followed after his birth & I sought out a specialist, who after several tests informed my husband & I that the cause of our miscarriages was a chromosome translocation. After more specialists & more tests I was told by a Genetic Counsellor that I had a 1 in 10 chance of miscarrying again. How wrong he was (& oh how I would love to pull that specialists bottom lip over his head)!

For 15yrs I lived my life desperately trying to get pregnant, & once I was pregnant, constantly concerned about losing the baby. Seeing pregnant women was particularly difficult for me, but I decided that the alternative – becoming hurt & bitter – was worse.

In a nutshell, the biggest lesson I learned over the last 15yrs is this…

Ps 126:5 “Those who sow in tears will reap in joy…”

It’s a scripture that I was always tempted to rip out of my Bible – I never understood what it meant.

One simple word changed the way I read this scripture forever – to me this scripture is something I now live by. It doesn’t say “those who sow tears”. It says “those who sow in tears”. For me this means continuing to do good, continuing to serve others, continuing to give of myself despite how I feel. It means sowing during the storm seasons of life, sowing when you’re going through a hard time & concerning yourself with others. It means giving of yourself so that your whole world is not consumed by your own grief, pain & loss.

Practically, it also meant for me to rejoice when someone had just announced they were pregnant. To be genuinely happy for them & I chose intentionally to give a gift to friends who had just given birth. It also meant me praying for others to conceive & believing God for breakthrough or healing for them. I chose not to become the woman who couldn’t give a cuddle to someone else’s baby.

It wasn’t the only thing I did during that 15yr season – I also continually poured out my heart to God. I let God in on how I was feeling – I didn’t hold back any thing. I think that’s a big part of why I feel healed & whole today.

If you’re still wondering about my Math from the beginning of my story – I now have 2 sons. My youngest son is 7yrs old & came to us via another miracle, we adopted him! I honestly think I am the most blessed mum on the planet & I’m so glad that God’s plan for my life is bigger than anything I could have ever dreamed!

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Reason to Trust #23 [Helena]

Helena NortheyAge: 38 // Favourite Food: Have to say chocolate with coffee……. the best combination! //Dream Job: Doing it – I love being a PE/Health teacher. I feel privileged to input into such an important area of kids lives. For them to get a love of exercise, and see how it can help them through all areas of everyday life. And to know that it is not about whether you are good at it or not, its about finding something you enjoy, and improving yourself, having all the rewards that come with exercise like feeling positive about life and yourself, and having a healthier body and mind. Health in the same way relates to all areas of life, like resilience, building a positive self esteem, bullying, drugs, alcohol education, understanding our bodies, making decisions, sexual health, mental illness, healthy lifestyles…….. and then relating it to God and His purposes in our lives – LOVE IT! // Current Season: Living my dream life, excited about the year ahead and then getting injured, surgery, almost died and stuck in bed for months in a lot of pain! // Met Jesus: At Sunday school when I was five. // Favourite Verse: Ecclesiastes 3:1-14 – A Time For Everything

I was so excited for the year ahead. My injury happened on my 1st week back at work for the year. We had just started playing a PE game, I was in and started chasing one of my year 10 male students, sprinting at my max and leaning in for the tag, I felt a rubber band snapping sensation around my hip area. I finally found out I had a hamstring avulsion – where you rip your hamstring tendons off your pelvis. So three and a half weeks later – I have surgery where they anchor my tendons back onto my pelvis with pins.

After the surgery in North Sydney, I was in a huge amount of pain so the decision was made to hook me up to a self administering morphine pump. I pressed it whenever I was allowed to as the pain was excruciating. The next day they said I could travel back to Canberra, they discharged me and gave me a morphine injection to my stomach to help with the trip back.

My husband and I were waiting for the wheelchair and it was taking so long. About 45mins after the morphine injection, while waiting for that wheelchair, I started to feel sick and passed out. My husband called my nurse, who checked my vitals and rang the code blue alarm.

Six ICU doctors ran in (my hubby said it was like an ER episode) and they began working on me. I had respiratory depression – which ultimately stops your heart. They injected me with three large vials of Narcan, which reverses the effects of an overdose.

While this was all happening, I was unconscious, but could hear sounds. All of a sudden all the sound ceased, I felt peaceful and I saw bright colours of yellow, orange and red. And in my mind I thought, “I am dead, I am dead.” Then all of a sudden my eyes opened and I felt the most intense pain I have ever felt. The Narcan had reversed every bit of painkiller that I had in me and I was screaming. It took 20 minutes before they could calm me down. It was a very frightening experience!

What is amazing is that wheelchair didn’t come! It was God, if I had been in the car on the way to Canberra I would have died. God is ALL knowing. In life don’t get frustrated in the delays and the waiting – God is in control!

One thing out of that near death experience that I realised is that we are all a breath away from being called home.

We need to cherish everyday that we have, make the most of every moment and enjoy life in the everyday experiences. When we are called home, it is nothing to be afraid of, as Christians we will be taken into our loving Saviour’s arms.

So now as I write this, I am nine weeks post operative and still, every day, I need to give it all to God.

I am thanking God for my husband, my kids, my mum, dad and all my wonderful friends. God’s grace has been abundant. This injury takes 6-12 months to recover. I ended up with a superbug in my wound, (which has gone now) and I am still on a lot of pain medication. I have started Hydrotherapy, three times a week and was very excited to be doing something – however I am in more pain afterwards, but am believing for that light at the end of the tunnel.

I have really felt God near me through this all and I know from past experience that God turns the bad into good. He gives beauty for ashes. I believe there are many lessons to be taught in our tough times. We need to remember that God is good and keep holding, gripping onto God and know that He will bring you through!

God has brought me through bad times. He has a good plan for my life and is always faithful. Through the bad times, it feels as though we are the only ones struggling through trials. Life is going to have its ups and downs, everyone has struggles and WOW life is about bringing glory to Him, trusting God, just getting back up, dusting yourself off, and keep putting one foot in front of the other and pressing on through all seasons!

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Reason to Trust #22 [Bek]

Bek CunninghamAge:  The BIG 3-0!! // Favourite Food:  I love anything cooked from scratch…but have a massive weakness to anything labelled Cadbury! // Dream Job:  Mum first of all & encourager for others to see  all God has purposed for them.// Current Season:Full to the brim & loving it! Mum to 2 beautiful girls, Wife to an incredible guy (Grant), Church Life and Young Families Pastor and Casual Registered Nurse.// Met Jesus: At the age of 5 in Sunday school I raised my hand and walked to the front to accept Jesus as my Saviour.// Favourite Verse:  Ps 40:5  –“O Lord my God, you have performed many wonders for us. Your plans for us are too numerous to list. You have no equal. If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds, I would never come to the end of them.”// Instagram: @bek_cunningham

Have you ever experienced a moment in life when suddenly all of the oxygen in the room has been removed? Like, the weight of the world really is on your shoulders? Perhaps even the walls around you seem to be closing in closer and closer? For me, one particular day comes to mind. A day that could have possibly marked my little girl’s last moments!

Generally speaking I would say I’m quite a low key person and it takes a lot to get my feathers ruffled. However, on this day…. nothing seemed further from the truth. It changed me…. and it changed me forever! Often when a traumatic experience occurs, it can in fact alter your entire perception on life! Priorities can be restored and your focus can be realigned and back to where it should be, with God right in the centre!

My experience began about 8 months after my eldest daughter, Rylee was born. Little did I know, that we were about to enter a season where she would be unwell for an extended period of time. As a result, we spent the next 9 months in and out of hospital where she was treated with oxygen therapy, other medications and nasogastric feeds. It was an intense time and quite honestly we were utterly exhausted. Life doesn’t stop either when challenges come and I’m not too sure we really were able to keep up with it all.

During one of Rylee’s hospital admissions we were faced with an emergency. I was holding my very fragile looking baby at the time when the pediatrician entered the room. Quite sternly she urged me to put my baby back to bed right away! She had noticed that her breathing had become quite laboured in such a short space of time. Within seconds I heard her calling out the door for more staff. In a stressed tone, the Dr continued calling out into the corridor for help. There was a whole lot of medical jargon being called out and because of my nursing background, I understood the seriousness of each word! She was yelling things like, “Book an ICU bed, this kid’s crashing….. Someone get the crash trolley NOW…. Can we get a portable x-ray here STAT, she’s too unwell for us to move her!”

I was pushed to the back corner of the room and left to watch the staff take over. I was starting to become short of breath, as I realised I was unable to control what was going on in front of me. We soon learned that both of Rylee’s lungs had collapsed and her oxygen levels were quickly declining. At this point she was looking quite lifeless. I was freaking out…. pulse racing…. adrenaline pumping all the while still very assertively claiming healing upon her life in my own little corner of the room. I looked over to see them prepping for a chest drain insertion to re-inflate her lungs, which can be an invasive procedure especially because of her age.

It was then that the most amazing thing happened! She literally sat up in her bed, colour returned to her face and her oxygen levels began to climb more and more with every new breath. The staff all looked at each other in bewilderment, as moments earlier they had been preparing her for transfer to the ICU. There was a sense of relief that literally washed over the entire room! PRAISE GOD!!

Later that night, I found myself in quite the state of reflection about everything that had happened earlier that day! I opened my Bible to Ps 18 which confirmed to me about the reasons I trust. It says, “The ropes of death entangled me; floods of destruction swept over me. The grave wrapped its ropes around me; death laid a trap in my path. But in my distress I cried out to the Lord; yes, I prayed to my God for help. He heard me from his sanctuary; my cry to him reached his ears.”

My heart was filled with such gratitude and thankfulness for God’s supernatural intervention. I honestly don’t know how others deal with similar situations without God in their lives! My trust in Him over the last few years particularly, has continued to be put to the test and all I can say, is that having God on our team has certainly been a game changer! He has held the trump card in every situation that has come up, even when I don’t understand at first. Eventually when I catch up, I am reminded that He is always by my side and cheering me on to see the miracle to fruition.

To this day we are still journeying to see little Rylee’s health completely restored some 5 years later. But I can confidently know that He is with me always helping me through whatever challenge I am currently walking through.

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Reason to Trust #21 [Nadia]

Nadia ClarkAge: 33 // Favourite Food: My Mum’s Roast. // Dream Job: Doing what I’m doing. // Current Season: Besotted Mum to Zion (almost 5 yrs) & Hope (2 yrs). Stoked to be married to Craig for 11 years. Privilege of being a Pastor in LIFE Melbourne. // Met Jesus: When I was 5, in the car with my family. // Favourite Verse: 2 Timothy 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” // Instagram: @nadiajclark

My husband Craig is very spontaneous and loves organising surprises. And while its lots of fun I can sometimes struggle receiving the surprises. I like to know what’s going to happen and to be in the know with all the details.

For example for my birthday just been, Craig let me know that he was organising something for me that evening. Throughout the whole day I couldn’t help but drop subtle little hints like “Babe if it’s going to be going out for dinner can you please make sure so and so is invited.” And “I would just LOVE a massage tonight- that would make my birthday.” (Ok maybe the hints weren’t that subtle) Anyway the evening came and was everything that I wanted it to be, and we finished the night and I remember thinking, “Man I wish I had been cooler about the whole thing.” But I couldn’t help myself!

There is something in me that likes to be in the know.

A year ago we were happily living in New Zealand, enjoying life, and building God’s church. We were involved at many levels of our church LIFE which included leading a campus for Ps Paul and Maree de Jong, leading Young Adults and heading Get Smart (a national youth conference in NZ). To be honest, we didn’t expect things to change anytime soon. Things were growing and expanding. We were stepping out in faith and seeing God do amazing things.

So when God started to speak to us in May last year about moving to Australia to look after LIFE in Melbourne, we did not see it coming!! It was left field, but we couldn’t get away from God’s voice (let’s be honest sometimes we want to run!). So in December last year we stepped out in obedience and left what we knew in NZ to start a new adventure.

While it was an exciting new adventure I was struggling.

See I wanted to know how it was going to end. I wanted to know that this would be the best decision for our kids?I wanted to know what church was going to look like? I wanted to know that it would be worth leaving our family for? I WANTED TO BE IN THE KNOW!!! But I remember God speaking to me so clearly and saying- “I’m asking you to step out when you can’t see what’s around the corner. I’m asking you to step out into the unknown.” At the end of the day that is what faith looks like- it’s stepping out and walking into the unknown. Like Hebrews 11:8 says-

“By an act of faith, Abraham said yes to God’s call to travel to an unknown place that would become his home. When he left he had no idea where he was going.”

So why step out into the unknown when it means leaving so many of our comforts and securities? When it means leaving what God has entrusted to us for the past 10 years in ministry. When it means leaving family and friends… The questions I’ve asked myself so many times!!! What I’ve discovered is that although the path is unknown our God is known. And because our God is known, we can trust in His character and that where He is taking us is for the best.

Like God showed me in Isaiah 42:16

“But I’ll take the hand of those who don’t know the way, who can’t see where they’re going. I’ll be a personal guide to them, directing them through unknown country. I’ll be right there to show them what roads to take, make sure they don’t fall into the ditch. These are the things I’ll be doing for them— sticking with them, not leaving them for a minute.”

We can step out into the unknown, because HE is right there with us and will never fail us!! Through the unknown HE IS KNOWN.

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Reason to Trust #20 [Thelma]

ThelmaAge: 65 // Favourite Food: Chinese Stir Fry. // Dream Job: Retired, grandma and volunteer at church. // Current Season: Retired, grandma and volunteer at church. // Met Jesus: At 9 years old at home. // Favourite Verse: Galations 1:15.  ‘But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by His grace, was pleased to reveal His son in me.’ 

I was 6 years old drawing on a blackboard on the kitchen floor. It had rained for weeks. Suddenly the lights went out. My 4 year old brother ran to Mum sitting at the kitchen table. I didn’t. I wasn’t scared of the dark. I was a big girl. Immediately there was the loudest sound I’d ever heard. I leapt straight into Mum’s arms, feet never touching the floor.

My father struggled to open the back door and was hit with something sharp. Mum and Dad left our little house and walked in the pouring rain through the flooded streets to my grand parent’s house. Dad carried me and Mum carried my brother. I was wearing a little red jumper but I was not afraid. Dad was carrying me, so all was well.

Our house in Yandina, in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland in Queensland had been destroyed by a mini cyclone on Sunday afternoon.

Only later did I realize what courage and faith my parents had to leave their fibro house being destroyed by flying corrugated iron from other houses and walk through flooded streets in pouring rain where power poles had snapped and power lines lurked unseen beneath the water.

A few days later, Mum said we needed to ask God to help Dad find the house insurance papers. He had searched unsuccessfully in the sodden debris in the ruins of our house, damaged beyond repair.

We knelt beside Grandma’s big four-poster bed. My head didn’t reach to the top of the crisp, white, damask bedspread. As Mum prayed, a picture came into my mind of Dad’s suit hanging in the wardrobe. The insurance papers were in the suit coat pocket. I knew without a shadow of a doubt they were there. I told Mum. She said, ‘No darling, they would not be there. Daddy hasn’t worn that suit since we were married.’ I was afraid Mum would not listen to me and I just knew they were there.

Mum was a great woman of faith and knew her Bible well. Perhaps she remembered the story in the Bible when God called and spoke to a little boy Samuel. I don’t know, but eventually she looked in the pocket of the suit and there they were.

That day, in His wonderful love, mercy and grace, the God who created the heavens and the earth and sent His son Jesus to die on a cross for my sin and that of all people and rise again from the dead to give everlasting life to all who believe, chose to reveal himself to me, a 6 year old child.  

Today, at 65 years of age, such kindness fills my heart with thankfulness to the point of tears.  He alone knew the path my life would take and how much I would need that steadfast assurance. This was my first personal experience of a God in whom I could have complete trust.

One of my favourite Bible verses which sums up God’s goodness to me, is that written by the Apostle Paul in Galations 1:15.  ‘But when God, who set me apart from birth and called me by His grace, was pleased to reveal His son in me.’ 

It is ongoing and the story is still being written.

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Reason to Trust #19 [Annie]

Annie WilsonAge: 49 // Favourite Food: Kiwi onion dip and chips // Dream Job: Mission Field/Preaching… or on some days running a gallery with great coffee! // Current Season: Involuntary single…and in a process of recalibration…I work with people who need complex care as a result of spinal injury or brain trauma. // Met Jesus: When I was 5. I remember drawing a picture of Jesus on the cross with me at his feet. I have always been deeply connected to Jesus but don’t remember a ‘moment.’ // Favourite Verse:  Jeremiah 33:3 – “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you unsearchable things that you do not know. // Instagram: @anneewilson // Book: Hope Regardless

I’ve been alive a long time and have known Jesus since I can remember. I walk daily trusting Him.

My favourite scripture starts with the words “Call to me” which in itself beckons me to trust that He is there waiting if I lean in to Him.

There have been so many times in my life where I have had to trust. During the last few years it has been a daily decision to trust Him.

You see, I woke one morning two and a half years ago and found my husband had died during the night. I prayed for Craig to be healed and for him to live – he didn’t – I was too late.

Were my earnest prayers begging God to heal not ‘good’ enough? My reoccurring question has been – where was my God who ‘watches over His children while they sleep?’ Was it not His will for Craig to live?

Can I still trust in a good God, a God who can heal, a God who is for me not against me?

Some days I can emphatically answer ‘yes’ to this question. When everything in me resonates that I can trust Him. Then there are the other days when my trauma overrides my sensibilities, I struggle to find a peace and have to surrender to the mystery of my God.

Looking back, since Craig ‘disappeared’ from my life I have had to make many decisions. One of the biggest was to make a career change. After working at a church for seven years in a creative role I had clarity that I was to ‘step away’.

That was where the clarity ended!

Having no clear thoughts on what was next, I resigned. I began relaxing into His embrace knowing that there would be something for me at the right time. So now, as a sole parent and provider I was having a sabbatical. In the mix of this I had decided to purchase a house and the mortgage started on my final leaving date from work – no pressure!

Not knowing what field of work I wanted to head in to or what I was qualified to do now, I spent the time giving my new home a creative overhaul. After about six weeks I thought I should probably put a CV together. So I got that happening in between coffees with friends and painting walls.

Then God moved His hand. I got a call from one of my minders to introduce me to a recruitment officer. I went for a catch-up and they offered me a job that day, couriered me a contract the day after and I began work as a serious injury/complex care consultant the day after that. Easy – new career.

I love my job, my nursing background has come to the fore, the capacity and comfortability (probably not even a word but you get the idea) to be with recently injured people and their families in the midst of their trauma and life changes is a gift. Although it’s hard to be constantly reminded of the fragile life we are leading and living breath to breath I feel so honoured that in a complete circle God trusts me with people He loves. It confirms in me that there is more to me, than me!

God, through people, has shown me over and over again since that fear-filled day and the many that have followed that He loves, that He is gracious, that He cares, that He provides, that He is close and that I can keep my hand in His and trust Him to lead me through the valley to an open field… to something new.

It’s a decision to trust Him. The rewards, well they are peace and comfort, they are hope and they are the ability to keep living and to keep giving to others.

‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you unsearchable things that you do not know’… Amen

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