I’m a proper Hampden Park girl. I went to school at Parklands, bought my penny sweets in Paper Lane and have been feeding those ducks in the park since I was born!
I’m one of four kids, we lived with my mum and went to my Dad’s on the weekend. Church wasn’t part of our lives, it was just something our grandparents did because that’s what grandparents do.
As a teenager, I struggled with anger and depression. I was rebellious and sinking into some dangerous habits. I had no motivation for life. Although I didn’t know at the time, I was craving acceptance, belonging and purpose.
One night, some mates of mine dared me to knock on the door of a house we walked past with an Alpha Course poster in the window. We had no idea what it was about and were greeted by a very excited, jolly Belinda who explained it was about God!! She was really nice, but church and God was not for us.
“I was a pretty dodgy and intimidating teenager and yet I was welcomed with open arms.”
I lived just up the road and for about a year I’d bump into her out and about every so often until one day she invited me to help paint the local scout hut as part of an outreach weekend. Something intrigued me, so I went along.
I was 16 at this point and off the back of painting the scout hut, Belinda invited me to Kings. After about a month of coming on Sundays, meeting some very lovely people and quizzing Belinda on what this was all about, I chose to follow Jesus.
This decision changed the course of my life. I had nothing going for me, I had given up on myself and yet He pursued me, redeemed my life from the pit and crowned me with love and compassion.
I’ve had some amazing blessings and times of pure joy, I’ve also had some really dark and tough times too. There are no promises that the Christian life is easy, but He has always provided me with exactly what I’ve needed to get through, and always in such a personalised way.
Kings was a great environment to figure out what this all meant, equipping me for life and laying the foundations of my faith that still hold strong today.
“This decision changed the course of my life. I had nothing going for me, I had given up on myself ”
It felt like I was involved in every part of Kings life. I was loved and cared for by so many people of different ages and backgrounds. I was a pretty dodgy and intimidating teenager and yet I was welcomed and embraced with open arms.
I was at Kings for about two years before I moved to London to do Impact (a Christian discipleship gap year) and serve on projects with local young people and the homeless.
I still live in London with my husband Ben. We’re involved in church planting in Lewisham borough, with a real heart for the community, particularly the issue of serious youth violence.
When I was younger I found it hard to stick with anything for very long, but by the grace of God, who has been not letting me go for nearly 15 years, I’m approaching my 10th wedding anniversary, have had quite a successful career as a quantity surveyor working for award winning companies and got myself one of those fancy university degrees.
As a teenager, I never could have imagined the experiences that God has brought me through and the adventures He takes me on. I’m thankful for His consistent provision and pursuit of me.