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Life of an Ordinary Aussie Woman

Sunday, 26 March 2017


When I entered my wilderness season, The Lord led me to read Jeremiah 29:11; “For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.”

Perhaps it's a little strange given it's such a well known verse of scripture, but I really don't think I knew the verse at the time, even though I had been a Christian for around seven years. What I do know however, is that the timing of reading this verse was perfect, and even though I was suffering, I knew I was not abandoned. I knew He was with me, even when it seemed no one else was.

Soon later and over my years of singleness, when I felt so alone and weary, He continued to give me promises. Verses of being rebuilt and refreshed; I knew there would come a time when I would be a joyful bride. I knew that He knew how I felt, and that He would provide for my children and I a godly man to be the head of our family...even when I could see no suitable ones for us around. Sometimes it was difficult to hold onto His promises when I looked around and most everything I saw was still barren, but I held onto the hope of everything being able to change in one day with The Lord...I knew nothing was impossible for God!

“Again I will build you, and you shall be built, O virgin Israel! Again you shall adorn yourself with tambourines and shall go forth in the dance of the merrymakers.” Jeremiah 31:4

“So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten...You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, And praise the name of the Lord your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you...” Joel 2: 25a;26a.

Psalm 68:5-6 says, “Father of orphans and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation. God gives the desolate a home to live in; He leads out the prisoners to prosperity, but the rebellious live in a parched land.”

God is such a good Father. He loves us, His children,
more than we can comprehend.

I believe, without a doubt, that even during difficult times He is working things out for our best interest. For we know from scripture that He works all things together for the good of those who love Him, and nothing can stand in the way of His will for those He loves.

There were times when I cried, feeling like the world had made me a widow. Rejection and loneliness at times seemed to be a taunt, and there were times when I was quite weary. Yet it was in the wilderness The Lord ministered to me in a way I had not experienced before. Just like Hosea says, “Therefore, I will now allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her.”

The Lord provided for me and my boys, time and time again in both a super-natural and very personal way and it was more than enough, so much so that there were times when I wondered if I really needed a human husband...yet the desire for one remained. But most importantly it was the desire for His planned man for the boys and me I desired most, as I knew that making the wrong choice with this matter was not a part of His plan for us.

There were times when I'd see the happy faces of people going home as families together with their loved ones after church, and I'd wonder, “How long?” But psalm 68: 5-6 not only says He cares for the widow, it also says He gives the desolate a home to live in...another translation uses the word 'lonely'.

I know what it's like to be lonely for a complete family. I loved my boys but struggled with a piece of my heart being empty and a part of my family missing. I knew we needed a Christian husband, I just didn't know who he was or where I'd find him, so I waited...and prayed...and waited and prayed...

I know The Lord is good and truly does want to heal our broken hearts and bind up our wounds. I encourage you today, with whatever you're hurt is to be patient.

Keep prayerful and hopeful. Don't rush into anything.

Be wise about all matters of the heart. As children of the One most high, trust Him with your precious heart for that is exercising true faith.

Become strong in times of weakness by prayer and reading the Bible. Remember being patient in times of suffering produces endurance and godly character, if we let it...

God does restore, so keep prayerful. Be strong in The Word and do not lose hope in the One who never fails!

Love Melanie.

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Haters Gonna Hate...

Do you know what it's like to feel feel anything other than beloved by others, especially as a proud Christian?

Do you know what it's like to have your outreach and love to be met with a smile, yet only to be mocked later behind your back...which of course you know about, as the mockery made its way back to you?

I think you would know, as sadly it's not uncommon and it seems today, social media is amplifying gossiping and bullying amongst not just teens, adults too! I personally know what it's like to feel the hurt of people 'unfriending' me on social media, or to have people write about me on their own, or other people's walls behind my back. I know what it's like to have my happy posts ignored and gossiped about...yeah, sadly I do know.

At times when this has happened, I've tried my best to do what Taylor Swift's lyrics encourage. I try to keep 'cruising'...walking on and 'shaking' off the negativity. I think things perhaps as we all do like, "Maybe they're jealous"...and so on. I think "Well, haters are simply gonna hate"...

"But I keep cruising, can't stop, won't stop moving. It's like I got this music in my mind, saying it's gonna be alright!Cause the players gonna play, play, play, play, play. And the haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate...Baby, I'm just gonna shake, shake, shake, shake, shake. I shake it off, I shake it off. Heart-breakers gonna break, break, break, break, breakAnd the fakers gonna fake, fake, fake, fake, fakeBaby, I'm just gonna shake, shake, shake, shake, shake. I shake it off, I shake it off..." (Taylor Swift, 2014)

But just like the worldly, sexualised booty-shaking, in the accompanying film-clip to this Taylor Swift song, I find the advice to 'shake it off' a worldly substitute for what I truly need. A temporary fix, lacking what I need to really have an internal shift and for my well-being to be restored. I actually find thinking, “Well haters are simply gonna hate”, only a superficial, self-centred thought...One that only serves to elevate myself above the person who has hurt me.

It's ONLY when I begin to meditate upon Jesus and worship Him that any permanent, internal shift happens.

You see, it's like when a person is genuinely thirsty and drinks from a can of sweet soda. Their thirst is only quenched temporarily and their body is left in need of true, clean hydration. It's like as the bible says, people choose to drink from cracked, man-made cisterns, rather than the clean, good wellspring of life, Jesus Christ. To have our strength and well-being renewed we need to have our wounds healed by Jesus...This is what keeps my ministry on social media going. It's not from simply shaking it off by focusing upon my own strengths.

There are even times when I can find myself feeling stressed and overwhelmed, from my own self. Sometimes I can even be my own worst enemy. Sometimes it can be hard to 'shake off' my own negativity as I don't even know why I'm feeling a certain way. Sometimes the only 'hater' as Taylor Swift puts it, is myself. Do you know what I mean?

Again, it's ONLY when I begin to meditate upon Jesus and worship Him that any permanent, internal shift happens.

I haven't written a post in a while as I've been busy with Richard preparing for our wedding in June. Without realising what was happening, I had begun to feel stressed and pressured, with so many worldly thoughts running through my head. It wasn't until I took time out in worship that a real shift happened.

Through simple, private, heart-felt worship I was able to gain clarity as to where my thoughts had been, and therefore why I had been thinking the way I had been. Then through focusing upon the eternal, unchanging truth of Jesus in worship my focus changed from me to Him, and The Lord was able to minister to me and renew my strength. I felt The joy of The Lord return with a fresh, clear godly perspective.

Let me encourage you. When haters hate you, as they will, or you find yourself tired and stressed, possibly 'hating' upon yourself...Worship. When your perspective becomes worldly; as in fixated upon those against you, or even focused upon yourself...Worship...Irrespective of how you feel!

I have honestly found, it's ONLY when I begin to meditate upon Jesus and worship Him that any permanent, internal shift happens...every thing else is a temporary fix, lacking what I really need.

Let me leave you with a song that helped me recently to worship Jesus and gain much needed clarity and strength, love Melanie.