3 Years, 1095 Days.

Today is 3 years, 1095 earth days since Kimmy went to be with Jesus. I wonder how many days it feels like for her on the other side? Completely free from sin, guilt and shame, totally one with her Beloved, living in that Endless Summer of peace and joy – more alive than we are!

You can read Kimmys ‘Endless Summer’ blog post here!

I miss her dearly, her laugh, her contagious joy and mischievous nature, I think she gets that from our Dad! Her soft compassion and endless faith in humanity’s ability to be kind and reflect the nature of our Lover King Jesus, if we’d just believe.

It comes in waves and sneaks up on me sometimes, mostly when I least expect it. It’s been a journey for sure, one of learning to let it out when it comes (generally at the most inconvenient of times) and being totally ok with that. Trusting that the unconditional love and understanding of the people around me is enough to be safe and vulnerable – seen and known for who I really am in all of the moments without judging me for any of them.

I’ve been learning that when I’m messy, I’m actually ok. I am brave and strong in those moments if not even more so than when I have it all together.

She was good that – seeing the gold in people and choosing to believe the best no matter where people were at, especially me. I think she gets that from our Mum. Divine patience and unconditional love!

People felt safe with Kimmy, even if it meant that she was confronting things that were not right with the truth, it was always done in love. I miss that about her, the way she would bring a double edged sword but somehow leave you feeling like her best friend.

She was the cheekiest –righteousness convicted- person I knew, she was so funny but NEVER crossed the line! I remember often cracking a funny and hearing ‘ELLIE NOO! YOU CANT SAY THAT!’ 😂 ‘I don’t remember YOUR name being Holy Spirit!’ I’d say back and continue on my naughty-cheeky escapade making our Mum laugh. 😉

Kimmy hated reality TV, especially MAFS, she couldn’t get past the drama HOWEVER she would watch it with me because she knew I loved it! I remember watching with her one night and leaning over I started flicking her earlobe while she gritted her teeth thinking ‘she’ll get bored and stop soon surely’ BUT as you can already tell.. I didn’t 😂 I kept flicking her earlobe till she violently shook her head squirming & tried to get away! Oh how I LOVED annoying her, as every big sister should!

We had this funny joke about her ‘man scream’ whenever she was scared she would let out this part scream / mostly grunt, AKA ‘the man scream.’ We would hide and scare her just to hear it then lose our bananas laughing. 😆

Kimmy had her struggles with fear – as we all do, but what I loved about her was any time fear came knocking, she would run to her secret place with the Lord and unpack it with Him and let him shine the light of His truth into that space and bring freedom – even if it took days! Her intimacy with the Lord still inspires many in their own walks with Him, including me.

We had the gift of being able to work together for a season in the same shopping centre (different stores, same owners). We would often run into the others persons store and sabotage whatever they were working on at the time – totally undermining their leadership just for laughs.

I remember she had these UGLY shoes which she loved, and this one day she had stolen the bin of good hangers from my store, so I snuck into her store with the intention of stealing the bin back however I saw she had taken her shoes off, so I stole them AS WELL and had one of the boys put them on top of the sign near the roof.. So when she realised the hangers were missing, she ran into MY store and found the bin of hangers (still shoeless) grabbed the bin soo quick all the hangers went FLYING.. THEN she looked up and realised where her shoes were – we all lost it!!

Kimmy loved herself a giant jar of Nutella! Whenever I wanted to bless her or if I knew she’d had a tough day, I’d pop a big jar and spoon by her bed and wait for her to find it! I miss the days she would feel sad and lay on my lap while I stroked her hair until she felt better.

It’s the little things I took for granted that I now miss the most. Doing life with my best friend who saw me, who knew me inside and out, who saw my raw moments, who knew me behind closed doors AND on the stage, and chose to believe in me and see only who the Lord had called me to be. She never judged me for a moment rather she called me by my true identity – a Child of God.

That’s what you do for those you love, instead of pointing out the mess, we remind each other of the TRUTH. It’s the truth that holds the power to set people free! Truth is a person, truth is Jesus! When we really love, we allow people space and room to be real and authentic, space to make mess, to move and adapt and change and grow – space to figure it out as they go. All the while cheering ‘Yes! You’ve got this! I believe in you!’ Just like the Father does. Just like Kimmy did.

He doesn’t expect perfection, just a heart that responds ‘I love you too!’ As we hear His gentle whisper ‘Ah! But I loved you first!’

Kimmy, I love you more than words could say, I miss your presence here on earth and your endless belief in me. I can’t wait to catch up and introduce you to all the beautiful new people in my life, but until then, we have a mission here on earth – to know Him, and make Him known.

I know you’re enjoying your Endless Summer!

“Beloved brothers and sisters, we want you to be quite certain about the truth concerning those who have passed away, so that you won’t be overwhelmed with grief like many others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, we also believe that God will bring with Jesus those who died while believing in him. This is the word of the Lord: we who are alive in him and remain until the Lord appears will by no means have an advantage over those who have already died, for both will rise together.”

1 Thessalonians 4:13-15 TPT

The Heart Journey: Land of Promise

When I was younger, my family and I lived in a caravan while we waited for our home in a different town to sell. My family used to make fun of me because other families would come to the caravan park on holiday, I’d make friends with the kids, then 3 days later when they had to leave – I’d bawl my eyes out. I loved so quickly and deeply it just didn’t make sense… But now it’s starting to..

A few days ago, the Father said to me ‘Chantelle, I give you permission to love wildly and deeply again.’ For those of you who know me, you might think HOW!? Mainly because the way I love is already pretty crazy. But this is the journey I’ve been on where it all started to come together.

Melissa Helser said ‘the Promised land is not the end destination,

it’s the moment the Father heals our eyes to see Him rightly’

In Numbers 13, Moses sends out 12 men to spy out the land God had promised to them. For 40 days and 40 nights they saw the same things, tasted the same food, walked the same roads.. Yet 10 spies brought back a bad report, and 2 spies brought back a report of hope, future restored, promise and freedom!

The report you believe will either empower you to possess the promise, or paralyze you with fear & keep you stuck in the wilderness.

Last year I was coasting along, and somehow it felt like this deep sadness pressed in on me everyday, everywhere I went. It was horrible. And no one would have known outside of my family because I believed the lie that ‘I’m a leader, a leader has to have it together.’ And so I shut down my heart and believed that being emotional was not allowed.

What I didn’t realise was that emotion, pain, was my hearts way of trying to tell me that something wasn’t quite right, something was hurting and there was in fact greater freedom I had access to but in shutting down my heart, and believing a detrimental lie, I was unable to possess that freedom.

REALLY long story short, Nate Johnson preached a word one night about heart healing and the Fathers love wanting to walk us through pain and not debilitating our hearts right to come alive any more. That was the very beginning of God pulling on what I call ‘the Golden Thread’ of my heart and bringing me into freedom.

A couple days after that, I flew out of the country of the trip of a lifetime and I desperately wanted to enjoy it but my heart was so hurting and in deep need of the Fathers love.

Fast forward. I’m in Germany attending one of my best friends wedding’s and I’m doing great. I haven’t cried – I shed a tear but I was holding it together. However I could feel something right beneath the surface that was ready to burst if something poked at it.

I’m in another country and I can’t speak German, so I’m already feeling a little isolated. And what I didn’t know was that Germans really, I mean REALLY celebrate weddings. They don’t see it as an event to get through and leave, they see it as a day to enjoy family, celebrate with close friends, have deep conversations, eat together and start all over again. A normal German wedding would last well past 5am the next day.

At the reception I’m sitting across from some of his German friends and I’m doing ok, it’s now 10pm and I’m like – I need to get alone with Jesus. However the people I’m sitting across from started asking me questions about my personal life and started speaking into some things I was feeling pretty sensitive about at the time. My heart was so hurting. And then it started. And I couldn’t stop it!

I started to cry, from deep in my belly, they prayed for me. I said thank you – really – thanks for that *sarcasm intended*. Then I went to the bathroom to collect myself, came back and some more people I love and respect checked in with me asking if I was ok. ‘I’m fine (insert fake smile).’ They poked the bear again.. I tried to collect myself, but I bumped into my friend that got married and he asked what was happening.. and that was it. I grabbed the keys to my friends car, excused myself and high tailed it out of there – locking myself in the car.

I wailed. I don’t mean politely shedding tears. I mean I wailed. The kind of gut wrenching grief that escapes when you least expect it. For 3 hours. I was due to fly out of the country the next day so that means I didn’t even say goodbye to anyone! (It’s pretty funny to lock back on, but at the time…)

 I sat in that car while I got it out, all the grief, disappointment, despair, hopelessness, and the father sat with me and comforted me, but He didn’t shut me down. He wanted me to get it out. And he just sat with me and loved me while I did!

What kind of Father is this?! That he would love us that much, he wasn’t disappointed that my hope had been misplaced; or make me take responsibility for the fact that my heart was in deep pain of my own doing. He just loved me.

That kind of love changes you! When you experience this kind of love, you can’t help but overflow with wilder love for the people around you!

Over the course of that holiday God showed me a picture of my heart, parts of it were alive and other parts were dead and black and needed his breath to breathe life into it again.

He showed me that I had believed a lie detrimental to my freedom that was so offensive I never would have said it out loud because I knew it wasn’t true. But the lie was this:

He left me.

This little lie had infected my belief systems and changed the way I viewed the world, people and ministry. And it was shutting down my heart. I was so disappointed that I was 28 years old and ‘this’ or ‘that’ hadn’t happened, that He had promised ‘this and that’ and it still hadn’t happened yet. That he said, his call over my life was ‘this’ and yet, here I am and nothing had changed.. I was absolutely gutted.

I was living from the belief system that my Father had left me.

Hebrews 13:5b) says “I will never [under any circumstances] desert you [nor give you up nor leave you without support, nor will I in any degree leave you helpless], nor will I forsake or let you down or relax My hold on you [assuredly not]!”

I had tried to ‘truth’ my way out of this deep grief, however I had missed part of His heart for me! See, the same Jesus that turned the tables in the temple, is the SAME Jesus who put Thomas’ hand in his side to pour water on the fire of his fear!

He’s such a good Dad – he’s made us in his image. We reflect his glory in every way! He is emotionally passionate, wildly free and fun, and recklessly loves us! We were created just like him! And when we shut down our hearts and invalidate our emotions, we’re shutting down a part of who he intended us to be!

In the old covenant, the spirit of God dwelt in the holy of holies in the temple. In the new covenant, the spirit of God dwells in the holy of holies – our heart – we have become the temple.

I’d like to propose that maybe in the new covenant, the promised land is not a destination, or the sum of his calling or certain things coming to pass in our lives, what if the promised land is us being able to walk in the fullness of freedom he died for us to possess he on the earth?

What if the promised land is – your – heart – you, being fully you, totally free, choosing to believe with everything you have that he is faithful, He is trust worthy and true to his word. Us being childlike and in humility receiving what we had no part in earning – being totally free here (heart) so we can be totally free here (with people) to love, to be Jesus on the earth, to need nothing in return, to owe no man anything except to love them? That He would receive the full reward of his suffering? That we would be free?

Melissa Helser said ‘the Promised land is not the end destination, it’s the moment the Father heals our eyes to see Him rightly’.

Father showed me that I had viewed his lack of answering as absence, when it was really his very active presence at work in my life, he healed my eyes to see him rightly when I stopped and listened to my heart!

See, he cares more about our hearts, what matters to us matters to him, and if our hearts are hurting, he’s not so worried about us ‘being effective and doing.’

In the midst of my heart pain, while I was Youth Pastor, the Father said to me, Chantelle, I care more about your heart, than about you running a youth ministry of hundreds. Come here, let me love you. That’s all that matters right now.

Numbers 13: 1-2 NKJV

And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the children of Israel; from each tribe of their fathers you shall send a man, every one a leader among them.”

Send: H7971 Let loose, stretch out, let go, set free.

Maybe the promised-land isn’t a destination, maybe its Jesus. Maybe it’s not a place, maybe the promised-land the Father wants you to possess is your heart. Maybe He’s not so worried about what you will achieve for Him, maybe he’s more concerned that you know just how deeply you’re loved, so that you can experientially and intimately know and live in the fullness of the freedom He paid such a high price for you to have?!

Maybe it’s not about ‘getting there’ maybe it’s about enjoying the journey. Daily being held by the hand that created you. Embracing the moments of joy, and the moments of pain – with Him. If it was just about getting there, we’d miss the intimacy and joy of truly knowing Him through it all!

Today I believe he’s shifting perspectives, He’s revealing lies that’s held us captive in the wilderness for too long. I believe he’s giving our hearts permission to come alive again and enjoy him daily.

To possess and walk in the fullness of freedom he paid for us to freely receive – so we can freely give!