Over a year ago, my life was turned upside down when I received news that I had been awarded a scholarship to study in the USA. I was born and raised in a small town in South Africa and I had never been to America, so while I had applied for the scholarship, the idea of being given the opportunity to study there was so outrageous that it seemed highly unlikely. Yet, our God is clearly in the business of making the unexpected happen! I was twenty-four, and in a stable relationship headed for marriage, and was very happily settled in a job that I loved. Then I received the news, which, though wonderful and exciting, sent me spinning. After prayer and consulting our families, my husband, Gareth, and I fast tracked our imminent marriage so that we could be in the US together. Fast forward just one week after our wedding and we arrived in Binghamton, New York. Needless to say, we have been living an adventure and in the midst of it all God has been incredibly gracious, our ever-present help in trouble, and a most faithful provider.
In being written out of this adventure, my hope is that this devotional blog will speak to those undergoing changes. While I have been caught in what feels like a whirlwind comprised of my own life’s events, our world collectively seems to be spiralling out of control. After having taught teenagers in high school and working with young adults in churches, I have been astounded by the way in which young people are bombarded with an overwhelming access to information. This is largely due to technological changes, but our world also faces political change, economic change and even climate change. The result of all of this is a kind of motion sickness of the heart. We are moving too quickly and are often found wandering what is and isn’t real, and who or what we can trust.
Coming from a totally different country, I also hope to bring a fresh perspective on navigating life and faith in the whirlwind, and, in so doing, to provide a platform to encourage discussion about the ways in which we, as Christians, can engage with our ever-changing world. My prayer is that is a world of rapid change we would be “rooted and grounded” in the love of Christ, finding, in Him, some sense of stability and security (Ephesians 3:17, ESV).