Age: 21 // Favourite Food: Currently sweet chilli philly. // Dream Job: Acting. // Current Season: Single, recent university graduate, part-time relief teaching for a season and taking a bit of ‘me time’. // Met Jesus: When I was 7 years old in my lounge; I literally paused mid-run and invited Him into my heart. Then resumed running. // Favourite Verse: Psalm 73:25 “What else do I have in heaven but You? Since I have You, what else could I want on Earth?”// Instagram: @chermaynegibson
Christianese (n.): ‘A communicable language within the Christian sub-culture.’
I’m not going to lie; I was tempted to claim that rather savvy definition as my own, but I’ll give credit where credit is due – thanks Google.
Having grown up in a Christian family, I’ve found that you tend to become numb to the terms that surround you in church circles. Recently, this for me was the word trust.
I have just completed my teaching degree in 2013 and made the decision that I would not go in to full time classroom teaching this year. I felt I needed a season of rest and refreshment, a ‘me-time’ season, before doing so. But I also needed to pray about it, just incase it was simply me making emotional decisions. Typical.
So I prayed… No answer.
Kept on praying… No big booming voice.
Continued to pray… No prophetic word from a stranger.
Meanwhile, I ignored God’s whisper in verses such as –
Jeremiah 29:11 – “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.”
Proverbs 16:9 – “You may make your plans, but God directs your actions.”
Proverbs 3:5 – “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
My fluent Christianese would kick in, thinking that these verses sounded ordinary; dare I say cliché. I had obviously never had to apply this kind of trust before; trust with my uncertain future plans. Around me, friends from university were sending out applications and getting called in for interviews. The stress of competing for jobs seemed so overwhelming I didn’t even want to give it thought. If only I had a dollar for every time I was asked “So what are your plans for next year, if not full time?” And don’t even get me started on my parents.
Closer to the end of the year, my mentor, Hayley, asked me what I felt God saying. Honestly, I just felt an inexplicable sense of peace about this resting season I was coming in to; but of course I didn’t realise that peace is one of the greatest indicators God will use to direct your path. Ideally, I would have loved to teach but did not want to go in to a full-time career straight away. Was I being unreasonable? Possibly. But I felt God say “Leave it to Me…if you trust Me.”
Around Christmas time, I was out shopping with my mum, as you do, when I happened to bump in to a teacher from my church that I had done part of my work experience with during my first year of study. My church runs a multi-campus school from kindergarten age to college, and this teacher had just moved in to a new full-time position there. We caught up on the past 3 years in all of 3 minutes, and of course she asked the million-dollar question – “So what are your plans for next year, if not full time?” Long story short, she made me email her my CV so that she could hand it in for her old part-time relief position with a good word. A month later, I received a phone call from the school office and signed my contract that same day. How’s that for divine appointment. #Christianese
Looking back now, I’d have to be blind not to see God’s fingerprints all over my life. A good friend of mine sent me this quote – ‘God is so secure in His sovereignty that He is not afraid to appear un-sovereign.’
The Christianese-to-English translation: God is so in control that He is not threatened by us thinking He isn’t in control.
The Christianese-to-Chermayne translation: God knew what He had planned for my future and He is secure enough to allow me to doubt; secure enough with me simply having to trust.