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"I will restore to you the years that the locusts have eaten."   Joel 2 : 25

Patricia's Moment of Truth.

As a small child, I was brought up going to Sunday School but in my mid teens we left Britain for Central Africa and stopped attending church.   I did well at school and University, qualifying as a Barrister and Solicitor of the High Court of NZ with 2 degrees, and worked for 16 years as a lawyer in the NZ Government.

Once I left home during my study years, I was searching for spirituality, and joined a small group following the teachings of Master Sant Kirpal Singh, who for 15 years was President of the World Fellowship of Religions. We were initiated by him, but he died just a few months later.   His express instructions to his followers were not to leave their religion, but to develop spirituality - his writings are full of references to Jesus and his teachings.

After his death, I left the group because it was seeking a new master, and carried on with my life. I always felt as if I really didn't quite belong in the world ('What's wrong with me?'). Soon my recreation became the outdoors, and in the high country where I spent my weekends, I was filled with awareness of The Creator. I am told that this shows up in my Landscape Art.

When my father died, I moved north to our 10 acres rather than sell it. Later, my mother's health deteriorated, and from 1998 I looked after her at home with Alzheimers.until she died in February 2007 - ten years, sole charge. There were some very black times in the course of those years (my blog The Alzheimer's Carer tells it like it is).   Most of that related to financial worries, being unable to get a job because my carer's role was 24/7, and being so tied down (thank goodness for the Internet, where I worked as graphic designer for an Australian company).

I'm grateful that finally an inner prompting helped me drag myself out of the pit, by learning to give thanks at all times for the beautiful place I live in, rather than agonising about how I would ever afford to keep it. I am sure that prompting came from the Lord.   ("Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof." Matthew 6:34.)

Then in October 2006, a friend invited me to a small interdenominational church about half an hour's drive north on the coast.

I'd never been a fan for church-going - to me religion and churches were man-made things - but my mom was in care for a week and I went. This tiny church had a wonderful Worship Team.   Well, the music and the presence of God's love that filled the hall that day brought me to tears. Not only that, they were having a baptizing day and so in a couple of hours, along with 3 others, I entered the chilly October waters of the South Pacific and was baptized into the Lord's family.

That was THE most important day of my life. Afterwards, kind members of the congregation - who did not even know me - gave me individually the scriptures they had been inspired with as the ceremony took place - and several of them were identical:

"I will restore to you the years that the locusts have eaten." Joel 2:25

What an amazing revelation from the Lord THAT was, and I have to say it is coming so true in ways I would never have contemplated!

I know I was blessed that Jesus Christ reached out and pulled me into His boat. Being with Him helped me so much in the last months of my mom's life, and even more so now, since her death.

I give thanks to Him daily, learning to take life one step at a time and lean on Him for His guidance and provision. That in itself is a huge revelation for one who has always been very independent, and it's doing me good. Some amazing things have happened. My ongoing prayer is that He will lead me to fulfil whatever purpose He has ahead.

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