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Life of an Ordinary Aussie Woman

Friday, 29 August 2014

As for me & my house...

Quite a few years ago now...
Being a Christian, living my life with Christ has been the best gift of my whole life.

When I accepted The Lord’s invitation to a new, transforming life with Him as number one, I experienced peace, finding the true meaning of life.  I began a new life of being transformed daily to be more like Jesus…this is always ongoing by the way, and there still is plenty of me lingering!  I have a joy and peace which although the world tries to destroy, remains and I have found my purpose.  It even changed my parenting which has filled our home with God’s awesome love…Yet life can still be very tough.

Some people have told me they view me as a passionate, calm and patient woman...and while I know this is God working through me because I am not naturally so inclined…I do still have a big trigger which is my children.

You see, persecution or attack when it is directed solely at me, although stressful, does not trigger as great a response compared to when it is directed at my children.  I think many of you parents would instantly know what I mean! 

My boys have been experiencing some Christian persecution from peers for quite a while now and I want to share this with you, because it is my desire through this blog to share my experiences and reflections with you as a Christian woman…not to write academic papers or try to show how clever I am.

From the very beginning of being born again, I took The Lord’s caution to always speak the truth very seriously and this impacted the way I have raised my boys, for they were all very young (under the age of 3) when I re-committed my life to Christ.  I decided that if something was fiction I would tell them so, and always feed them age-appropriate truth, hoping that when they were grown they’d know that they could trust me, and would continue to discuss their lives with me.

I decided I would explain my decisions to them and live my life as a committed Christian as an example to them.  For example I have chosen to not do sport on Sundays, and explained to my boys that this is because as a family I want to put The Lord first, and worshipping Him as a family and as the body of Christ is important (where 2 or 3 are gathered in my Name I am there) – furthermore a child friendly service has always been important too, along with me explaining things (to pass on our faith) like being quite for reverence, what to focus upon while being quiet and so on…

I have chosen to be committed to The Lord (like the verse says…As for me & my house we will serve The Lord) and trust Him with my sons - He has not disappointed and this is ongoing.

My boys are aged 9, 10 & 12 at the moment and as I said, for quite some time have been verbalising their ‘difference’ to most other kids and of their persecution for being so.  As I am naturally a protective parent, I have found this difficult at times…We have had many, many talks discussing the Christian response and we have prayed.  Sometimes I have not known what to do, other than pray and trust The Lord.  I believe I must focus on keeping close to The Lord in my own life, relying upon Him for strength (as sometimes I get very tired as a single parent) and loving my boys.

Last night my middle son chose to read his Bible to me and told me how he loved the Bible.  He laid beside me on my bed and read out loud some of a psalm to me, it was wonderful.

He then began to talk to me again about ‘the kids at school’ and ‘being different’ and of how he is choosing to believe, even though it’s tough without being able to see God and spoke about heaven.  He told me that he knows Jesus is ‘the way, the truth and the life’ and felt sad that other kids didn’t know this.  I asked him if he knew which gospel this verse was from, he didn’t, so it prompted me to look it up in John.

It just so happened that while I was looking for it, I first saw Jesus’ words on the world’s hatred of Christian people in John, so I decided to read these words Jesus spoke to his disciples to my son.  I read to him:
            18 “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” John 15: 18-19 (NKJV)

Of course I explained the verse and we talked about how as God’s children we are different from others, and although we love as Jesus loves, sadly the world doesn’t really want our love, for the world crucified sinless, perfect Jesus…

I then flipped back and my eyes went to John 14: 1-3…now I know this is a famous passage usually shared with people who are dying, but I share it also with my son.  I told him that Jesus said for us not to have troubled hearts, for he ascended into heaven and promised to prepare a place for us as God’s children and that He never breaks a promise.  Well, can you imagine my ten year-old’s response when he heard the word ‘mansion’ as translated in the NKJV…He was so excited and began to talk about how he’d like a light-sabre and elevators in his mansion so that he could have lots of people visit and stay!

I called my other two sons in and we shared the passages all together which was a wonderful blessing from The Lord.

I have found that it is not easy being a Christian and this is the same for our children…I told my boys that yes, I could have many, many more friends if I wasn’t dedicated to The Lord, but that The Lord is THE WAY, THE TRUTH & THE LIFE (the only true way for forgiveness, reconciliation, peace and eternal life with God) which is so worth more than anything the world may try to tempt us with – I also have reminded them that although our true friends may be few, God always provides us with His children for support!

As for me and my house…We will serve The Lord (Joshua 24:15)

In love, Melanie :)

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Children are a blessing and a gift from The Lord!

Children are a blessing and a gift from The Lord ~ Psalm 127:3, CEV

And like all of God’s good gifts we are never deserving of them…

I was not following The Lord with my life when I was blessed to have all three of my sons and what  a wonderful blessing they truly are…even if I have to stop typing this post to warn the youngest two that their sword fighting is getting too full-on!

It is on my heart today to praise The Lord for my three beautiful sons…and to encourage all of you out there, to remember that your children (even the ones still in your womb) are a gift from God that we don’t even fully comprehend.

I remember when I was married, early on I lost my first baby due to my pregnancy being an ectopic pregnancy, then some years on I suffered an early miscarriage at home…After these two heartbreaks I wasn't even sure if I was strong enough to try again, I was so saddened by the losses.

When I fell pregnant around 4-5 months later after the miscarriage, I was totally shocked, and as expected very anxious about another possible loss…but although back then I didn’t acknowledge the Lord’s gift, I was indeed blessed to have my first son by caesarean section.  When my first son was one year old, I hoped for a second son and WHAM it happened. 

Most people were happy for me, having two sons close in age…but then when I was surprised with another gift from The Lord, experiencing morning sickness at the mother’s playgroup with my second son only three months old…well…I’m sure you can guess some of the responses!

Comments like, ‘Don’t you know we have TV…blah, blah, blah’ and ‘You’ll have a football team soon!’

I thought…‘What is wrong with you people?  It’s only three kids…what’s one more plate at the dinner table?’

Sometimes when you rock the social boat by doing something others may not choose to do, you face peer pressure…yep, even still as adults!  And it’s really sad just how negative our adult world can be sometimes…

My children truly are the best gift I have received from The Lord, after my relationship with Jesus.

There are people today who believe the world’s lies that children are a hassle…that they hold one back…that they put pressure on marriages…that they cost too much money to raise…that they will only increase your stress and be burdens…and yes, some of these lies are used to counsel young girls into having abortions!

The truth is that ‘Children are a blessing and a gift from The Lord’ Psalm 127:3 CEV.

I can honestly say that I never planned to have children and become a single mother ~ yet even though I had no choice in regards to my marriage ending, I am so thankful to The Lord (who knew my husband would one day leave our marriage) blessing me with my three boys.

I can tell you that NO they have never held me back ~ rather they have given me so much joy, strength and purpose even during my most dark days!

Are they hard work? Yes…but it is also the most satisfying work I have ever done.  I cannot express to you the satisfaction and joy I felt inside, when I have seen my young boys maturing, expressing godly love…parenting is a lifetime job, but is beyond compare.

I cannot help but think when I watch my boys and think…‘Wow, I think they’ve finally got it!’, that our Father in heaven thinks the same and smiles at us, as we do lovingly at our own children.

I have spent today working outside with my eldest son and have been blessed to marvel at how capable he is, at twelve years of age with his hands in the garden and at his wonderful, willing attitude to help his mum…

The last couple of days, my second son who is now ten, expressed his interest to learn the guitar (I had borrowed one hopingly from their school)…I learnt as a girl, so I showed him some chords to a Christian song we love.  He struggles academically at school, but has always had a beautiful singing voice (we sing a lot).  Well the joy in my heart I've had while hearing my son singing and playing the guitar for The Lord, is amazing (he’s truly gifted to pick it up so quickly).

And my youngest son…well he’s already playing some chords really well too…but for now his focus is still on Superheroes.

I believe that sometimes as people we can think we know what’s best for our lives and then sometimes God just chooses to bless us with a surprise gift like a child anyway – even one totally different to us and challenging.  However the journey although long and sometimes challenging, is awesome.  To see a unique human being whom God has fashioned, grow and mature is amazing.  To be able to pray for and live your life with family is indeed a blessing!

Never forget… Children are a blessing and a gift from The Lord ~ Psalm 127:3, CEV.

In love, Melanie.

Friday, 22 August 2014


Death truly is not a part of the way things should be.

Although I always knew this as a fact, I have been experiencing it more since losing my dad and discovering just how stressful losing one’s parent can be.

God truly has been so gently, carrying me through.  My anxiety has been challenging, yet I have felt His peace and was able to successfully sing a Christian song, I felt led to share, at dad’s funeral on Monday.

Even with this tragedy occurring there has been so much of God’s amazing love present.  Love shown in smiles, hugs, kind words, sympathy, understanding, forgiveness, reconciliations, re-connections and stronger connections occurring.

When I first found out the news about my dad ending his life, I was very shocked.  The news impacted me with a sense of despair…I was hurt and confused and just kept praying, asking for help from The Lord to get me and my siblings through this most difficult time.

My dad had told me not so long ago that although he believed in God, he did not hold to the Christian faith in Jesus Christ.  This had devastated me personally.  It left me confused, as he had been supportive of my faith and pursuit of ministry, but also with more of an understanding of him as an individual person.

I am not going to tell you that I have ALL the theological answers to life’s questions for that would be foolish, because the truth is, there are things that I don’t have full understandings of and that I also don’t need to have full understandings of, for they are God’s business ~ like the life of each individual.

I have had the scripture in mind that speaks about not saying who will or will not ascend into heaven in mind, along with the fact that God is always good and just…this has helped me process that I don’t need to decide the outcome of my dad with The Lord, and remember that I can trust Him with the souls of all people, including my dad.

Last week in the lead up to the funeral, I was busy preparing DVD tributes for our dad, while suffering with grief, some guilt, and confusion.  After the DVDs were made and my children were off to school, I went back to bed and ended up having a vivid encounter or visitation dream of my dad.  I’m sorry if I’m using the wrong name or term to describe my dream to you, it’s just what I discovered people call them when I google searched, as I’ve never had a dream like this before, I wasn’t sure what to call it.

I had heard my mum talk about dreams like this before, but as I said, I have never had such a dream before or since.  I was having a usual dreaming sleep with weird, random stuff happening (which isn’t unusual for me).  I was in a room which was meant to be my bedroom (yet wasn’t) and I looked over to the corner of the room.  There was my dad, relaxed, at peace, in a green velour armchair.  He did like to recline, and as I said he was relaxed, and peacefully watching me…but then in my mind things changed.
My dream changed to where it was VERY vivid.  I was totally myself, I knew I was asleep and dreaming, yet my awareness was like in real life.  Instantly, I was like, ‘Whoa what’s going on?’.

Even though in my mind I felt I knew what was happening, I had to verbalise it in a question to test things.  I asked my dad something like; ‘Why are you here…how is it I’m getting to see you like this?’

He simply replied, ‘Because God allowed it.’

I went up to my dad, squatted and hugged him across His chest.  I began to cry.  I said to him, ‘I love you daddy.  I am sorry daddy I wasn’t a better daughter.’

He cried too, and I sensed he regretted what he had done and the pain it had caused.  I let go of him and walked a bit away, I knew when I looked back he wouldn’t be there…and yes, when I looked back the armchair was empty.

I began to cry a lot more, but my dreaming was no longer vivid and so I fought to wake myself up.

When I awoke fully, all I could say was; ‘Thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus’ and cry for real, for the dream was so real to me.

I am not trying to convince you of anything with this post…I am just sharing my experience with you.

I still have questions and grief but the dream did leave me with more peace, as I was glad I was able to see my dad at peace, embrace him and say sorry.  I never used to call my dad, daddy, yet he had always called me daddy’s girl…the dream has given me more comfort in my conviction that God is always good and just and that I can fully trust Him always with the souls of all people.

Does God want us to have peace and healing with Him NOW in our current state of life by responding to Him through Jesus Christ?  Indeed, yes and I will never believe otherwise, for He is the source of everything good and provides us with a hope that is unmoveable, even if shaken.  He walks with us through the fiercest storms and never forsakes us – praise His Holy Name forever!


Sunday, 10 August 2014

He is jealous for me!

“How He loves us, Oh, how He loves us, Oh…how He loves…” John Mark McMillian.

I recently recorded myself singing this song as an encouragement for my Christian brothers and sisters, due to all the turmoil going on in our world at the moment.

But once again I am reminded of the lyrics as I grieve the loss of my dad, who ended his life on Wednesday.

There is so much complexity to this situation that I am not ready to write about.

Yet I want to continue to connect with all of you who read my blog, (even if it is limited) as you matter to me.

This is a time for me to keep close to The Lord, as always…and to do less well.

I am intentionally taking time out from interactive social media and even blogging…I am needing to use my limited energy for my 3 most important relationships; My Lord, my children and my grieving family.

I am writing this post with intention as I want you to know something…The love of The Lord is unfailing.

Ever since I was born again I have been blessed to see God’s hand in my everyday life ALL THE TIME!

So much so, that sometimes I don’t even make mention of many occurrences, as I think people could think I’m a little crazy, or even impartial to exaggeration…So often I just keep these little and even big treasures to myself, and thank God for them.

However today, even during this difficult time I want to share with you some things which have happened for I am choosing to BLESS THE NAME OF THE LORD – just as the modern Christian song says which I’ve so often sang…

Blessed be Your Name in the land that is plentiful and Your streams of abundance flow, blessed be Your Name; And blessed be Your Name, when I’m found in the desert place, though I walk through the wilderness, blessed be Your Name…You give and take away, You give and take away, my heart will choose to say, Lord Blessed be Your Name…

Even though I am walking through a dark valley with my beloved family right now, I have been so comforted by The Lord through an amazing amount of love and support, being bestowed upon me from so many people…words of love, affirmation and encouragement have been amazing…hugs and even looks which give so much.

I have felt a bit of attack as well, but it has been very limited, and with God’s support I have been able to walk away from it and leave it be in His hands.

Wednesday night was an ordeal (well it was actually the very first hours of Thursday morning) for I was told the news about 1:15am. I was blessed to spend 2am-6am with my sister and her husband at their home.  I returned home to sleep and felt so comforted by The Lord, snuggled in my bed, safe and secure with Him.  

Yet, I was pulled out of bed by a phone call Thursday after lunch time.  It was my boys’ school – they called requesting me to immediately come to the school, as my youngest son had hurt his arm.

My two other sons have broken their arms and when I arrived at the boys’ school the scene was not unfamiliar.  My baby was crying in pain, holding his arm and looking at me in desperation.  He had fell when tripped by the garden bed edging.  So off I went with my 3 sons to the hospital…

I knew I really needed support, so I rang a Christian girlfriend and asked her if she’d accompany me and my youngest son.  I dropped off the other two boys to my sister, grabbed some children’s pain relief off her, (as my son was still very distressed) and headed off to pick up my friend, knowing she’d hold my son while I drove.

While I was driving and my son was distressed, I thought to myself something like, “even though we’ll have to probably go through the routine of the doctors, x-ray and plaster, I will still practice my Christian faith and comfort my son by praying for him”.  So I said him, “Be healed in Jesus’ Name.” followed by something else, maybe, “may you know His peace.”

When we saw the doctor, my youngest son was still in pain while being examined, yet before we were sent off for the x-ray, the thought came to mind that the x-ray would show no broken bones…yet to be honest I dismissed the thought and kept putting one foot in front of the other.

However the x-ray did not show any fractures and ever since then my son’s arm has gotten better.  At first my son was very upset that he wouldn’t be getting a plaster cast! But now he himself says that Jesus healed his arm.  I too believe this, and think that although I did not pray my prayer in fervent faith, The Lord answered, as He knew we needed it!  He is just so good and I am once again amazed.

Earlier during the week, I wasn’t thinking straight when dealing with my finances and chose to pay extra in rent.  I left myself a bit short, especially considering I’ll now have extra fuel expenses with the funeral being quite far away.  Yet I chose to not worry and even had said to my boys, that even though we did not have much money at the moment, one cannot out-give God...while also thinking that I may need to borrow money off my sister.

I basically had no meat left and knew I needed to go shopping.  I was even thinking that maybe we'd just have to have plain 2-minute noodles one they're around a dollar per family packet.  But after church today a friend opened the rear of her car and called me over…she handed me a lot of meat, freshly butchered from a bull calf!  We’ve just ate awesome roast beef for dinner!

May you never forget that the LOVE of The Lord is unfailing, and even if you walk through darkness, He is there with you! Christianity is not just some weak religion, it is the power of Christ and salvation. I am not some super-human, just a woman who knows the awesome love of God through Jesus Christ!

Until next time, peace to you in Jesus’ Name.


Wednesday, 6 August 2014


Instant coffee
Instant photos
Instant credit
Instant food
Instant answers
Instant messaging
Instant gaming
Instant pornography
Instant music
Instant warfare
Instant…have what you want at the click of a button…

We have been on a trend of fast and convenient for a long time now, and it’s understandable because as people made in God’s image, we create and want to help our societies…

I do honestly love being able to instant message my loved ones and vice versa, especially with not living in the same communities and I am NOT going to say that I don’t appreciate the time saving devices like my automatic washing machine or computer…

However in my humble opinion, based upon current media, observation and experience, our INSTANT societies are losing their ability to relate as communities…

When I was growing up my mother discovered fast and convenient.  She found that she could buy clothing from big outlets for us children, cheaper than what she could purchase the fabric for, already made!  She could buy produce already grown and packaged food…so why bake at home?  She discovered chemical products that ate away the scum…and this is how I was raised.  My mother actually had less work to do in the home so she worked during the day which paid for extracurricular things, like my dance lessons...we even went on holidays. This was just the way our life was then.

Without trying to be judgemental, when I think of my life back then, I cannot help but think that although our life had more free-time, our life often lacked quality…you see I remember having everything, yet lacking in quality relationships, and feeling lonely.  

I cannot help but think that INSTANT comes at a cost…

I actually missed out on things like:
  • Mother-daughter bonding over learning to cook and sew.
  • Learning to be self-sufficient, growing healthy, organic produce. 
  • Learning to share and communicate on deep levels about life, when the television dominated our home each evening.
  • Learning to be patient and wait for things one needs to save up for.
  • Learning to not seek instant gratification from other people, rather seeking The Lord.
  • Learning that one could have a social gathering without the need of alcohol or getting intoxicated.
  • Learning that it was more important to look at people’s hearts rather than looking like actors on Neighbours.
  • Or that men were not like the ones portrayed on Days of our lives or 90210.

As a non-Christian young adult I can remember feeling very anxious if I could not have what I desired instantly…I can remember one day lying in bed, obsessing over the room’s curtains I did not like, and stressing that I did not have the money to instantly go to the super store and purchase some ready-made ones right then!

I was obsessed by money…because for me, that was the key to getting my INSTANT fixes!  I was convinced that if I could only achieve X,Y & Z, I would be happy and content.  So I spent my time always coming up with money-making anxiety grew and I had less peace.

I look around today and I see more and more INSTANT everything…Yet more and more personal debt, obesity, impatience, addictions, bullying and loneliness.

We do seem to have everything at the press of a button, yet we are losing each other.

I am trying to live differently, since my eyes were opened by Christ.  It is difficult raising children in our INSTANT world to be counter-cultural. 

I understand some people find me strange that I choose to NOT do football programs which fall on a Sunday, that I’ve home-schooled in the past, and make Christian education a priority.  Or that I don’t like my kids spending every evening watching TV and that I try to make fast-food like McDonalds a treat, rather than a staple.  

No I don’t get everything right or perfect and I am still learning…but I want to instil into my children that IT IS OKAY to wait, IT IS OKAY to be patient, It is RIGHT to be still and wait upon The IS FINE TO BE SINGLE rather than going to a nightclub to meet someone because you are lonely!

I have chosen to be content in my life with Christ and to grow in patience waiting upon Him more.

I have said enough, but will finish with…INSTANT GRATIFICATION comes at a cost and less is truly sometimes more.  Being free to say, "No I do not chose that for my life", is wonderfully liberating. 

Let’s be bold to grow in our patience, waiting upon The Lord more…to relate to others face-to-face in genuine love…to break free from our addictions!   Go against the grain – chose Christ and find freedom and peace!

In love as always, Melanie :)

Tuesday, 5 August 2014


This post goes out to all my brothers and sisters...

You who are shaking the world, making a difference for love to grow.

Whether you’re planting seeds or watering them, you are partnering with God to bring His sons and daughters home.

You are unique.

You are a rebel.

You are a solider in His army of love.


Some days are extra tough, rubbing you raw, breaking you down…

Some days you feel weak and some days you cry…

Some days your heart breaks…


You are redeemed.

You are His child.

You belong to Royalty.


There is power in the message.

There is power in deeds done in God’s love.

There is power in fellowship & prayer.


Keep reaching out to others with His love...

Keep sharing the truth no matter what the world says...

Keep faithful to Him who sees your deeds done in love...


Your sister-in-Christ, Melanie.

If you need some more encouragement, here is Brandon Heath's song 'Love Does'

Friday, 1 August 2014

Love lifts us up, where we belong...

While celebrating my sister’s birthday on Wednesday, “Love lifts us up where we belong” played on the screen, with Joe Crocker and Jennifer Warnes beautifully expressing the heartfelt lyrics.

It made me smile, as I sat there reflecting upon the lyrics…as Yes, God is love, and He does lift us up to where we belong - which we cannot do ourselves!  For He restores us to a reconciled relationship with Him, as His children, through Jesus Christ…

The lyrics of this song offer a beautiful chance for reflection upon life.

It does seem in our world, few hearts survive…and when we’ve been reborn by the blessed Holy Spirit and have new eyes to see, we realise this is due to our rebellion.

Yes, the road is long and there are many mountains in our way…the enemy does try to destroy us…but when we belong to God, no matter what we face, He enables us to endure the long journey, never forsaking us, enabling us to rise and soar like eagles with Him!  There are times when He also will level a mountain, for His will to be done in our lives.

When we take time out with God, He does lift us up, far above this world, where His clear winds blow and we can more clearly hear His voice.  

While many people choose to clutch onto their sinful lives and remain broken by their past, we live in the here and now in freedom from our sin, and in His light which we shine out to others!  

Love has lifted us up to where we belong, so how could we not want this for others?

Living in Christ’s light is truly liberating and the way for peace and joy, regardless of what the world throws at us.

I have been blessed to reconnect with an old school acquaintance this week via Facebook.  They commented on how the last time they saw me, we were both in our early 20’s.  They called out to me, but was unsure if I saw them or not.  This person remarked how I was in a popular area of Melbourne, renowned for its night spots, and I was sporting a small black skirt in very cold weather!

It made me think about how much of my life before I was born again, I spent wearing black and remember of how after my re-birth, I actually felt drawn to colour.

It may not seem important to you, but it was a significant change I noticed occur inside of me.

There is still so much colour in my wardrobe these days!

I remember how I wore black all the time…I thought it was slimming and chic…and of how colour just felt wrong when I put it on…

I now understand how symbolic this was of my life back then…for I truly loved the darkness, I was stuck, a slave to my evil deeds, and was in rebellion to Christ…but when I confessed my rebellion, seeking The Lord’s forgiveness and experienced liberation and peace, I became drawn to the light.  Now, just as I love to wear colour, I love my deeds to glorify The Lord and to live in His glorious light.  Just as the following scripture says:

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.  “Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Those who believe in him are not condemned; but those who do not believe are condemned already, because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil.  For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God.”  
(John 3:16-21 NRSV)

Yes, Love lifts us up to where we belong…to reconciliation to God as His children, living in the light of Christ…Oh, praise The Lord!

In His love, Melanie.