The restlessness was unbearable, the despondency tangible; It had only been a couple of weeks since taking up a new role as a staff nurse in the ‘Cardiac Intensive Care Unit’ (ICU) in a London hospital. Longing for a fresh start, I had made the decision to relocate from Sheffield following a divorce, bearing in mind that I’d had a child at the age of 18; surely things couldn’t get any worse.
London was full of life – sunny, at the time, vibrant and the multi-racial members of staff at my new workplace were the icing on the cake. However, barely had I started work when I realised the job was exactly what it was in Sheffield, only with different demographics. My heart sank at this point…I went on to explain this to God, even went as far as writing and handing in my resignation letter to Him (a copy of which I still have on file in case God has lost His)!
Go to Medical School
His response I could not have envisaged or simply thought plausible. One day around 5am during my quality time, I was sitting up in bed… I felt impressed to go to medical school, really compelled, seeing as the message felt urgent. Besides, God knew I had resigned so all I could do was wait on Him before moving on.
Nonetheless, I was at peace, so I decided to enquire about medical school, during my tea break.
It was a short walk from the ICU to the medical school admissions office. As I walked out of the door with the prospectus in my hand, the lady who had given it to me shouted: “by the way, the closing date for applications is this Friday!”- What valuable information this was; considering I had intended to browse through the prospectus over the weekend, meaning I would have missed the deadline. Now the sense of urgency was justified.
Just as well that Friday, I happened to have the day off.
I needed an open reference from my line manager for my application, so I called her and she agreed to meet at midday since she had no available slots any earlier. This then meant I would have to travel from London to UCAS offices (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) in Cheltenham, to hand in the application in person to make the 5pm deadline.
After hopping on and off the underground, I got to Paddington station about 5 minutes late, just missing the train. The next one was at 3 p.m. and it would take 2 hours to get to Cheltenham station. I didn’t know how far the UCAS office was from the station, but they closed at 5 regard- less so I would still be late!! Nevertheless, I bought a ticket and reminded God that this was never my idea, to begin with so if the instruction was truly from Him, He would somehow have to keep the doors open…
Once I was on the train, there was no time for looking pretty; it was time to be making declarations. I called on the God who had promised to keep the doors open until I got there.
As soon as I stepped off the platform, I went straight into a taxi and asked how far we were from UCAS to which the driver replied: “Well, it’s not far from here but its peak hour now so it will be about 15 mins…”
The taxi pulled up in front of reception at 5:15 p.m. and I dashed out at the speed of lightning. As I walked towards the security guard, a man was coming down the stairs to check out at the barriers and he said to the guard, “that would be the last one” as he stretched his hand forward to take the brown envelope from me. Had he ended there, I would have thought it was all a big coincidence…
“Only time in 10 years”
The man went on to tell the guard: “This is the only time in the last 10 years that I have had to leave the office after 5”. So, it turned out that he comes to work for an early start and finishes at 4.30pm at the latest to get ahead of the traffic woes. For me, this was a prayer answered. God had been faithful and literally kept the doors open for me!
God remained faithful throughout my medical school years, from good friends to finances. He made a way for my daughter to go to boarding school (a testimony for another day) without which, it would have been very difficult, almost impossi- ble to gain a medical degree as well as ensure my daughter got a good quality education. Remember how He takes care of the lilies of the valley? How much more of us… [Luke 12:27-28; Matthew 6:26]
When I got it all wrong…
In 2009, a year before completing my degree, I had been considering purchas- ing a flat. As house prices in London were unaffordable, I considered buying through an auction. I considered this, viewed a few properties, and attended a couple of auctions to see how it all worked…
Then, one night I had a dream: we were at a picnic but as we were leaving, I realised I didn’t have my handbag. When I turned back to fetch it there was a massive black snake lifting its head as if it was protecting the bag. I could not get it back…
I shared this dream with my house fellowship group. One of the other members was adamant this was a sign of an attack on my finances and that we should pray about it. He gave me a strong warning to be very careful, especially where my finances were concerned because I could not get my handbag back in the dream.
Weeks went by then I eventually forgot about the dream.
I had seen a reasonable property that I liked and got a mortgage in principle with my bank. On the day of the auction, everything seemed hunky-dory, there were only a few other bidders for the property and so I was persistent. My hand was the one last up when the final hammer went down…phew, I had GOTTEN it!!
The paperwork thereafter was minimal and everything was finalised for comple- tion within 28 days after negotiating. The deposit was then paid to the auctioneers within 7 days.
Unfortunately, the bank that was providing the mortgage pulled the plug, citing structural concerns to the property which had been raised by their surveyor. I got an independent surveyor, as advised by the bank.
After all, had been said and done, I lost £10 000!!!
How could God have let this happen? Just sitting on my bed and letting the tears roll down my face made my entire body ache. I felt sick for days. I then remembered the dream…yes, I had lost the handbag with all its contents.
When God speaks to you, makes sure you have peace. Don’t make a move until you are at peace. If He has said something to you, he will repeat it, He will confirm it, he will clarify…he is NOT a God of confusion
1 Corinthians 13:33
And if you are not sure, then stay put!
After having worked as a junior doctor for 2 years, I was going to have a gap year as since I had not been accepted into a specialist training post. I then decided to apply for a Master’s degree. I applied to a couple of universities in London as well as Glasgow. My daughter was going to a university in Scotland so I didn’t mind the move.
I got an offer from Glasgow University, so I had two weeks to find accommo- dation before the start of term. The first week came and went, then the second. Now I had to list more estate agents with the relevant properties to rent and calling each one. The responses were similar; either the property had been taken or they insisted on arranging a viewing first. I offered to take any flat going based solely on the pictures and descriptions provided, as I was in London. Surely, I couldn’t just travel to Scotland to find accommodation, especially within such a tight timeframe.
With no luck in sight, I decided to change tactic. I asked God! Oh, how many times we go ahead and try doing things our way then when it doesn’t work, we turn to Him instead. Should we not just ask Him in the first place?
Anyway, as I sat quietly with my notepad and pen glaring at all the numbers I’d rang, the Holy Spirit said: “call ELIM church, there is someone there looking for a house share”. I heard it in my heart very clearly…
A few weeks prior, I had been discussing churches with my daughter as she had just started university in Dundee where she mentioned that she would be going to Dundee ELIM. I had concurred with her and said when I moved to Glasgow, I would also look for an ELIM church so we would both be under the same church (not that it matters really).
So, I called the church that afternoon but there was no response. Called again the day after, still no response. The day after that, a Thursday, I decided to give it a miss and go back to calling more estate agents. Anyhow, on the Friday I felt led to call the church again so I did so grudgingly since I’d had no response on previous days.
My sister from another mother. It could only have been God who arranged this.
This time, I called earlier than usual, 1 p.m. to be precise. Much to my surprise, a lady (let’s call her Janet) answered. After introducing ourselves, she sought to establish the reason for my call. I told her I had been “informed” that there was someone in their church looking for a house share and I went on to explain my situation. She mentioned that she knew a couple looking for a house share and that she would speak to them that Sunday then let me know on Monday. As we talked, we connected and it felt as though we had been childhood friends.
After the call, I felt it was a done deal; I stopped searching for houses and started considering removals and storage. Before the end of the day, ‘Janet’ called back. She explained that she felt it was her I was supposed to move in with and how she had taken the rest of the afternoon off to pray about it to make sure she was doing the right thing.
We agreed on the terms and so I set off early on a Sunday morning. Delayed by a tyre puncture, I was now going to get to Glasgow around 7 p.m. by which time ‘Janet’ would have left for evening service.
Dinner is ready
I pulled up into the driveway, got the keys and let myself in, bathed then warmed and enjoyed dinner she had prepared for me. I welcomed ‘Janet’ home later that evening. The following day was a bank holiday so we sat and talked for eight hours… She was my sister from another mother. It could only have been God who arranged this.
All in all, what am I getting at? That God always speaks; we just must listen…
Learn to be still and know that He is God [Psalm 46:10]
Knowledge of who God is will come in your quiet moments. He will reveal Himself in your situation and provide solutions whatever the need.
Call upon me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty (unsearchable) things which you do not know [Jeremiah 33:3 NKJV]
Wait for the answer, for His response, after you have called on Him.
You do not need a special gift to hear from Him. After all, He says: “My sheep hear my voice…” [John 10:27 NKJV]
- “Callupon me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty (unsearchable) things which you do not know” [Jeremiah 33:3 NKJV]
Wait for the answer, for His response, after you have called on Him.
- You do not need a special gift to hear from Him. After all, He says: “My sheep hear my voice…” [John 10:27 NKJV]