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Life of an Ordinary Aussie Woman

Monday, 30 September 2013

About Me...

Want to know more about me?

The ordinary Aussie woman known aka Melanie Baker-Nash?

We truly are complex people with so many stories underlying all that we do and say...which is why I said to even call my blog 'Life of an ordinary Aussie woman' was somewhat of an oxymoron, because who, ever is really uncomplicated and ordinary?  You can read my first ever post about this here...

However I did chose to give this title to my blog, because to see me in the street I am just like any other Aussie woman and mother...I am just like the girl next door :)

Recently I was interviewed by Chris Wilson for the Google+ community 'Christian Bloggers'.

This experience was an opportunity for others to get to know me, The Ordinary Aussie Woman writer hear some more of my life story, as opposed to snippets of reflections found here on my blog...

My kids found it quite amusing that their mum was now officially on You Tube!

So if you would like to know more about this simple author, follow this link to my interview!

Christian Blogger's interview, Melanie Baker

Melanie :)

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Excellent Exemplar

ACTIONS speak louder than WORDS!  Do you agree?

Today I want to encourage any of you out there to persist in doing good!  Even if you do not SEE anything good coming back in return...
But first, I think I should tell you why!

As a mother of three sons aged 8,9 & 11, I can tell you that sometimes being the primary exemplar can feel like a heavy burden!  However, recently God has blessed me is SEEING some early fruit of Christian integrity in my sons, which has SO WARMED MY SPIRIT!  Because it’s tough to walk out my life with Christian integrity, in our self-obsessed world…and believe me, I DO NOT always get it right!

I am further encouraged when I think back to my early childhood, and of my mother’s example. I do not really remember my mother preaching the gospel much to me as a young girl, but what I do remember better is her actions! To be honest as a young child, I DID NOT understand all I was hearing in church or Sunday school, but I understood the genuine love that I saw J

I can remember my mother HELPING others…sharing cuppas, talking about things that mattered, and supporting others.  My Mum would stand up for us if we were mistreated; she worked hard inside and outside, she provided for her family even knitting jumpers to sell at the local handcraft store for extra income.  She taught me to swim backstroke the night before the school swimming carnival, and I came second!  She would perm her best friend’s hair to save money, and mend our clothes!  I can remember her choosing to sponsor a child overseas, and making efforts to visit people.  In short she showed me the gospel, and the person she was, was the woman I wanted to be like!

Fast forward 30 years, and you find me of a similar age to my mother then J

The woman I am now is a giver…but please I am NOT boasting here!  For indeed I have not always been a giver, but when I was re-born God began to change me, and those seeds my mothers had sewn into me as a child, being the excellent exemplar she was, sprouted!

You actually find, both genetically and spiritually, a woman like her mother!

It’s heart-warming and I’m sure God smiles loving at the two of us – like 2 peas in a pod!
Just like my Mum, I love to give, whether it’s hand-me-down clothes, free hairdressing to friends, support over cuppas, or a helping hand…those seeds did sprout!
So whoever you are, be encouraged…EVEN IF RIGHT NOW YOU DON’T SEE ANY FRUIT FROM THE PEOPLE YOU IMPACT…like friends, family or your kids…you are being watched, probably more closely than what you realise AND God is forever faithfully at work!

A verse which comes to mind is Hebrews 6:10-12

10 For God is not unjust; he will not overlook your work and the love that you showed for his sake in serving the saints, as you still do. 11 And we want each one of you to show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope to the very end, 12 so that you may not become sluggish, but imitators of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.’ NRSV

Don’t give up being an excellent exemplar is response to Jesus’ LOVE!

God bless, Melanie J



Tuesday, 17 September 2013


The authentic article...or in Aussie slang, the Ridgey Didge or the Dinky Die...or the Fair Dinkim, True Blue article!
So I’ve been blogging now for about nine months, and really my posts have been experimental in regards to their purpose…by this I mean my topics have been varied, and therefore have had differing impacts…

You see, it’s not that I’ve been unauthentic because that’s not the case…I am actually quite a creative, and at times a spontaneous person, so it’s natural that my blog posts vary…

But at times I’ve had a specific audience in mind for different posts…specific people in mind that I want to connect with…I suppose what writer doesn’t?  Yet other times, my posts have been cathartic, and I am writing to whoever wants to listen J

Over this period I have written 56 posts, this post will make 57…and due to Blogger Stats I am able to observe which posts have been the most popular…

Now please remember that I have still been writing all along as myself, but sometimes my posts have been female orientated, news orientated, Christian parenting or Gospel focused…and I think, that the Christian posts, or gospel posts seem to be the most preferred, along with the unusual/interesting/specific/odd ones…

Where am I headed with this post, you may be wondering?

Well today I saw a fantastic clip with Nick Vujicic, who finally had an appearance on US television with Oprah Winfrey…for those of you who don’t know this famous Aussie’s early testimony, as a young man he believed that one day he’d make an appearance for God on her show!

This clip got me thinking…you see in it Nick is unashamedly Christian, both in this television appearance and wherever he goes.  Just recently Nick travelled to places where Christianity is not tolerated in Asia, and was able to speak briefly of God on national television, and it was accepted!

This had me thinking…Why is this Christian man so loved, and why are my most popular posts the Christian or unusual ones???

Well I think Nick Vujicic is so loved and accepted because he is so authentic!

One look at Nick speaks volumes of what he has had to endure!  I don’t think I’ve heard anyone doubt his faith in Jesus, and he is such an inspirational light in this sometimes dark world!  So perhaps people do want to hear something other than what the world says…which would also make sense as to why my more popular posts, are the Christian or unusual ones!


People respond to authenticity from people!  It makes sense that people are disheartened by hypocrisy…I mean who isn’t?  So this should inspire us to walk with integrity in the light of Jesus and to NOT be ashamed of our faith, or think that it is something of a stumbling block to interacting with others!


Let’s be bold with God, and share His love by being authentic people!  This is NOT to say we’re not authentic…for it’s true that I actually am very blessed to know MANY authentic Christians!  But I just want to encourage you today, to keep being honest, and authentic!  If in doubt think of Nick!

Melanie J

Thursday, 12 September 2013


The self-assured winner
Bright, assured, talented, relational, optimistic, focused, whity, patient and calm…

Wouldn’t we all like our personal Curriculum Vitae to read like this?

And truly there are people who seem to have it all together…right?

They’re the ones we secretly admire, want to be bff with, or perhaps can’t stand…true?

They seem brimming with self-confidence and perhaps like they have-it-all…

However I believe that reality is actually somewhat different to what we imagine.

The grass-is-not always greener as we can imagine it to be…

Some people, who may seem so confident during the day can’t sleep at night properly, worrying about finances or even death…

Some people can’t relax due to the compromises they’ve had to make for their ‘lifestyle’…

Some people are so self-assured that they can alienate others, even becoming aggressive, believing their own self-confident fantasy that they are above others…

Some successfully wealthy people struggle with real personal relationships, and choose to fill the void with unhealthy habits…

Some people secretly compromise fidelity in their marriage to accommodate their partner, from fear of being alone…

I want to be counter-cultural in this post and suggest that it’s ok if you want more self-confidence…but that you won’t find it if you look to broken people…

Even if you think they’re not broken (cause you may find a celebrity ,or business person who doesn’t have dirt published on them)…chances are high that you still would be disappointed if you got to know them personally, because to have-it-all, so to speak, they probably have made some pretty harsh choices!

Now I REALLY don’t want to come across as someone who has life all together and is perfect…cause that’s not true…in fact today I had a moment of feeling insecure, and decided to do something which I knew wasn’t good for me…YOU SEE WE ALL HAVE MOMENTS WHERE WE DOUBT OUR SELF WORTH BECAUSE OF OTHER PEOPLE!

Now I know you know what I mean…perhaps our friends haven’t been very reliable…perhaps we’ve got on a few more kilos than we’d like and someone mentions it…perhaps someone spoke to us in a condescending way…perhaps we’re just tired and stressed…perhaps we have hang-ups from our past that trigger us…
True self-confidence comes from Jesus Christ…YES I know I am being counter-cultural here J

True dignity and self-worth comes from Him…not from yourself, or other people…because other people, and us, are unreliable!

Furthermore we all know that even the world itself is unreliable!  We all know of stories of investments turned bad, unforseen tragedies, famine and floods and so on…

Yet Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever, and in Him we find true peace and value as human beings…regardless of what the world, people who scorn us, or even ourselves from time to time, may say about us!

True self-confidence is an invisible quality that transcends from a person when they are truly anchored firmly in Jesus!  It does not mean that these people will never stumble…rather they will be able to respond with hope and calmness during life’s storms, because they know that the one who is FAITHFUL & UNCHANGING declares that they are a child of God and valued highly!

This is TRUE self-confidence! 

It is knowing who you are…a child of God saved and transformed by His grace!  It’s NOT false self-confidence…like the perfect, photo-shopped glossy photos from popular magazines who try to depict Godless people as successful, confident and self-secure!  Deep down we know the true reality about what the world wants us to think is the glamorous life!  People on the inside who are exhausted and starving for the true meaning of life…

When Pontius Pilate was with Jesus, Jesus told Pilate that the reason He had come into the world was to testify to the TRUTH!  It is very sad that even though Jesus was standing right in front of Pilate telling him the true meaning of life, Pilate still didn’t get it, for he responded to Jesus with “what is the truth?”  But is Pilate that different to the rest of us before we realised that the truth we were searching for was Jesus Christ?

Self-confidence we all want it in our un-reliable world…but we strive for it our own way, and on our own terms…when the truth is that we won’t find it on our own, because the creator of the world has a different plan!!!

In humility we need to acknowledge that we can’t do life with true self-confidence alone.  We need to confess our sin of having ourselves as god, and ask Jesus Christ to fill us with His Life, Truth and Peace…then our new goal needs to be seeking Jesus daily to grow in His Love and Truth so that we can stand assured of who we are through God’s mercy and grace!


In Peace, Melanie :)



Thursday, 5 September 2013

Spring 2013


For my friends who are on the opposite side of the world Spring is here in Australia!

Have you ever wondered how this season got its name? And did you know that this season’s full name is Springing-time!  Yes it is!  Because the name does relate to the plants springing up from the ground! You can find out more about the season names if you like here:

Well Spring has announced itself most unusually here where I live on the Eastern side of Australia this year…almost to the day (September the 1st) the weather changed in temperature dramatically…so much so, that on our National News they reported that authorities are already concerned for Summer, and the real possibility of Bush-fires again!

Not what we want to hear!  However I must say that the biggest shock is just how the sudden change in the weather has impacted me personally…and it’s had me thinking!

For those of you who are regular readers, and who know me well…you will know that I have been in a winter season in my life for around 2 years now…and to be totally honest this fresh burst of warmth has actually shaken me out of some of my comfortableness!

You see, I was actually getting quite settled in this season of Winter…both literally and emotionally!  But then the literal Spring arrived so suddenly, that I found myself challenged once again, on more than one level...

Yes challenged, because to be totally honest although the literal winter had been more restricting, I was now emotionally more comfortable, taking life easier and resisting change!  And as you know, the literal Spring brings about so much transformation and work, it's made me realise that I am now entering a stage of emotional growth which will also require much effort!

I know that on so many levels I must be flexible and open to God’s will, which is the new growth that He will bring forth.  I want to thrive in the sunshine of His love, rather than resisting and becoming brittle…
We know that when we step into the sunshine, the rays permeate deep into our bones, and we know how good this is for us!  Yet sometimes we’d just rather stay inside our own little bubble, instead of stepping forth with God…  It’s just how it is; sometimes the winter overtakes us. 

Yet God is so good, and He does bring forth the sunshine…regardless if we think we're ready!  Just like kids playing hide-and-seek… “Ready or not, here I come!” says life, as God’s good blessings are showered down upon all, both the righteous and not. 

So as always we have a choice.  To stay in our winter, or accept God’s good gift of Spring and new growth!  Yes we will you have to work…there will be plenty of gardening, but with Jesus we are never alone, and the rewards are good and fresh!
In love Melanie :)

Sunday, 1 September 2013


‘Australia’s Got Talent’

‘Australian Idol’

‘The X-Factor’

We probably all know the names of these T.V. shows!

It seems today, that the whole world has gone crazy over talented people, and that most people are in desperate pursuit to find fame, fortune, and worth as a human being from their talent, or more specifically from the world!

Now I am not saying that talent is a bad thing…because that would be wrong!

It would be wrong, because God Himself gives us talents, and we are made in His image!

He tells us in His Word, that we are NOT to be ashamed of our talents, rather we are to use them for His glory!

And really this is where the problem lies…because once again it comes down to a matter of the human heart!

Personally, I was born with genetics from both sides of my family line that contain people with artistic abilities.  Therefore I was considered a ‘natural’ when I began dance classes at the age of eleven, and even though I did not start ballet until 12 years of age (which is considered late) I ended up becoming a professional dance teacher.  I can sing in tune, and feel most comfortable with arts subjects.  However this does not make me superior to anyone else!  And it does not make me a good person, even if I may seem likeable J

I remember listening to a wonderful speech by Cameron Russell, who says that she won a genetic lottery, and how that models although perceived as ‘having it all’ are actually mostly self-conscious…you can watch it here…

I can relate to feeling insecure…I never won the grand finale of a talent quest; I struggled with my weight, and personal relationships; I was not accepted at most auditions; I still am not a great academic writer, or an exceptional artist…so you see there is always a flip side to how we perceive our worth when we compare ourselves to the world’s standards!

Idols, they come in many shapes and sizes…when we go shopping, my kids and I cringe at the idol statues which seem to be everywhere!  But even if we don’t have them in our garden, we can have them in our heart, when we elevate people and their talent to that of more than what they are!  Indeed, as I have said, talents are a blessing from God that we can celebrate, but they should be used to glorify God, and the praise should always go to HIM!

“That’s a bit legalistic!” Perhaps some people may think…but I don’t agree, I think it’s the truth!

God needs to be number one…are you teaching this to your kids?

Believe me, from someone who has experience what it’s like to be considered talented…when you’re not the exact thing being looked for at that exact time…you are discarded!  I often, OFTEN hear people saying to kids, do what you’re passionate about and I think, well how about first being passionate for God, and then waiting to see where He leads you using the talents He gave you!

Sports Stars, Business Tycoons, Models, Artists, Singers, Musicians…what happens when their time is up…when the unthinkable injury or illness occurs…or they just are too old…or they’re just not the latest star?  What happens to these precious individuals, uniquely made by God, when they’re faced with NO?  What happens to their self-worth, when all that they were, or what they thought made them special fades?

My heart aches when I see some parents pushing their kids to pursue their talents, in what’s really a seedy, money hungry, abusive world, above seeking Christ and His will for their life!  But it seems many people are in denial, because they don’t really know what it is like.  Will they listen to someone who has decided to get out of it?  Maybe not, as the lure of fame and money is so strong, and for the reasoning that; ‘We just want our kids to be happy!’  Meaning that they think financial security will provide their kids with stability and happiness!

Jesus Himself said… ‘For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?’  And this is in 3 gospels!  Matt 16:26; Mark 8:36; Luke 9:25.

Really the proof is out there…just take a look at poor Britney Spears, Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus and that is only three of the more current headliners!

I know this is a long post for me, but I will finish soon with the assertion that Godly Character is to be prized above talent!  I repeat Godly Character is to be GREATLY PRIZED above talent!!  And I will even assert this above academic pursuits!  Yes I will!  For I would rather my child to be a child of God, working honestly than a corrupt MD!  I would rather my sons be disciples of Jesus, who provide for, and protect their families, above being an absent business director who drives a sports car!

How do I end this passionate appeal?  Perhaps with ‘Seek Ye first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness’ Matt 6:33.  This is not an out-of-date appeal it is the truth!  Yes celebrate your child’s talent, but ALWAYS point them towards the one who gave them the talent!  Do not push your own ideas onto your child, or let them run head-on into the crazed highly sexed world.  Raise them with Godly virtues, and the discipline of prayer to seek God’s will for their life and usage of their talent!  For we are to be a light in the world!  We are to be in this world, but we are not to be of it…do not be fooled, the temptations are real and so enticing! And this is what God is saying in Revelation 18:4 with the warning to come out of the world and to NOT participate in its sins!  We cannot be a light while participating in the promotion of sin!
In love, Melanie.