Imagine if you will, a small 3-year-old boy sitting in a big old Scottish sandstone Presbyterian church with his grandmother, who had no trouble using her hat pin to keep him in order. There we were watching this man, 20 foot up in the air, spouting fire and brimstone at me. At least at the time I was sure it was directed at me and thinking this man must be God. This was my first impression of church and religion, and if this was what it was all about I wanted nothing to do with it
Roll on the years till I was in primary school aged 7 where i met a music teacher that also was the musical director and organist for St Johns Anglican church. He took me under his wing and asked my parents if It would be ok if I joined the church choir. They agreed and for the next 8 year I was a member of the choir and had the opportunity to sing in some of the great cathedrals in the United Kingdom. I loved being in the choir and started to realize that there was more to faith and religion than my initial impressions.
Then of course the inevitable happened, my voice broke and I was neither one thing or the other. At the same time teenage things started to become more important than church and with no mentoring church became the last thing on my mind and of course I started work so wanted the weekends to do other things.
At the age of 21 I moved to New Zealand and began my new life there. Work and play were upmost in my life but knew there was something missing, but not what. Next came along marriage, building a new house and all that goes with it. Then along came my son. At the same time my wife was diagnosed with cancer and after a time caring for her and my son at home Hospice soon became the way of life. It was there I met Dr. Richard Turnbull and the Healing ministry. He would sit and pray with his patients morning, noon and night, or when requested, and I could see the difference it made and in some cases removing pain completely.
After my wife passed my only life was son, work and house which went on for a number of years until I met my second wife
and started going to church again. But the inevitable happened, a new priest arrived, and was very much like the one in my childhood to such an extent that most of the congregation left. In order to save the church a new priest was appointed and the old one was appointed to Canon Theologian to the New Zealand Anglican Church. I moved to another little church St Hilda’s, as my marriage was not going well and ended up in divorce.
A little while later I met Kathy on a Christian dating site and corresponded with her. It soon became evident that God was
telling me that she was the right one and of course my reaction was to tell God he must be joking but after a few good kicks in the backside from him I told Kathy, only to be told that she didn’t want to get married again. After corresponding for over a year, God had his way and I came to the USA for a holiday. That was my first introduction to Good Shepherd Church and knew straight away that it was filled with the Holy Spirit.
We got engaged and Kathy moved to New Zealand where we got married at St. Hilda’s in June of 2000. St. Hilda’s was full of the Holy Spirit and with guidance from 2 exceptional priests, my continuing journey in faith and healing expanded. Then
came an Alfa Course which at the end has a portion on the Healing Ministry. I was asked to pray for a lady that had very high blood pressure and was going to the doctor the next day to be put on some very powerful medication. I prayed and the feeling in my body and hands was so different that I was scared to say anything. God had other plans; the lady informed everyone that when she had gone to the doctor her blood pressure was normal. This was truly the beginning of my Journey in faith and my calling into the Healing Ministry and emersion into church life.
Have I any regrets? Yes. I wish my calling and journey in faith had come much earlier. By the time I realized I wanted to be a priest I was told I was too old. But I am reminded that God is always there waiting for us and wont force himself on us.
HE NEEDS TO BE INVITED IN.
I have heard the still small voice of God my whole life and it was no different when my husband left me on Easter Sunday, April 16,1990. He left during the night while I was at work. I was devastated to find him gone and at that very moment I swore I would never marry again. But God had other plans.
Two years later I friend of mine said she wanted to go to Medjugorje, which is in Bosnia-Herzegovina, but she was nervous about going alone. If I went with her, she said she would buy my ticket. Well I’m no fool, so I said yes. As soon as we arrived our whole group tramped down to the church for the last mass of the day. It was pitch black and the town didn’t have any street lights. As I exited the church I was overwhelmed by the smell of roses and exclaimed such. Those in group who had been there before, started giggling and very nicely let me know there were no roses around. Instead they explained, Mother Mary often comes to people in a sign of roses. They told me I had had a special encounter with her.
It was there that God impressed upon me that He was going to make me ready for a new husband. At first I argued. I REALLY didn’t want to remarry, but I believe God tells you what He wants to tell you; then He tells you and then He tells you again. By the end of the trip I knew I was getting married again.
Over the next few years it was evident that God frequently tapped me on the shoulder and said, “take note of this.” I learned so many things that I can’t even begin to tell you. It was also around this time when meeting people on the internet became popular. I didn’t go on searching for a husband, but when I saw Mike’s face I just knew God was telling me he was the one. We dated long distance for over a year, but I never told him how I felt. Then one day he called me and said he had met someone new. It was then that I told him I felt God told me he was the one for me. He responded by saying that maybe I was right, but he had to do what he felt called to do, so we parted ways.
A few months later I started to correspond with a man named Graeme Watson. He lived in New Zealand and it wasn’t very long before he let me know that God had told him I was the one for him. I wasn’t ready for that. I came up with a million excuses as to why and how it was impossible. Then God whispered in my ear, “remember Mike?” Yes, I remembered how sure I was that Mike was the one, and now the tables were turned. I faced making the same decision Mike was unwilling to make. So I decided to wait and see what happened.
Graeme came to America the next year and stayed six weeks. A few days after he arrived we got engaged and then he took me to Scotland to meet his parents. We decided I would move to New Zealand. I was scheduled to leave in March but as the time came closer I realized I had lost my passport. Even with the expedited process I had to change my flight plans. When I finally arrived in New Zealand it was ten years and one day after my last husband left me. The Easter promise of rebirth had expressed itself blissfully.
Graeme and I have just recently celebrated our sixteenth anniversary.