Thursday, March 19, 2015


We have been to several Year 12 graduations lately, which always has me thinking back to when I finished school all those many moons ago. 

I actually got an invite to a high school reunion the other day. 
Someone had posted on a Facebook page, “Has it really been 15 years since school finished? Oh, I feel so old!” 
“Ummm it’s actually been 20 years!” someone else had replied.  I had to laugh!

Well, when I wrote my last post I had no idea what God had in mind for the month ahead and maybe if I had known, I might not have reacted quite so calmly.

After getting stuck into my Thai language study for a few weeks, the “possibility” of helping to champion the new ZOE Transitional House and Transitional Program for kids finishing Year 12 to study at university, or work, suddenly became a reality. 

Dave and I had talked about it off and on over the years, but really, “Who are we?” we thought!  “We haven’t even been through the teenage years with our own kids.”  “We’re not the best choice.”
We sent off an email expressing interest last year, then fast forward to last month and all of a sudden, there we were sitting in the Strategy Room at ZOE, talking about moving house and programs and helping kids find part-time jobs and budgets…

It’s been a really busy few weeks, but we asked for God’s peace and He gave it. 

In the past month we have packed up home, found a suitable “transitional” house in the city, moved into the upstairs part of the house and begun the program that will assist these young adults setting out on their new adventures, their new season of life and what will certainly be an exciting road ahead to their future dreams and aspirations. 

Already several of the recent high school graduates have come over to hang out downstairs at the house, start to collect job applications and search for university dormitories.  Some of the boys even came over to trim up the yard and trees while Dave was away for the week.  So sweet! 
It hasn’t even been 2 weeks since we moved in yet but already the house has been a hive of activity.

One of the young adults, who will be completing Year 11 and 12, and will be living at the house, just had an answer to prayer.  Yesterday we found out that he was accepted into one of the best private schools in the city due to his academic record.  He is already a few years older than his school peers but he has so much determination to finish school well and then get into university and study to be a doctor.  We are so excited to get behind him and support him to see his dream fulfilled.

Some of the girls will initially stay at the house short-term while they begin to look for work during the summer break.  The house will also be used for the ZOE Life Skills program, youth events, Family Bonding week etc.  I am so excited to see how this place can be utilised as a space for spiritual growth, fellowship and fun.

After staying up to 1am unpacking boxes on the day we moved in and madly cleaning and trying to make it feel homely, it warmed my heart to see the young people arrive the next day, run into the home and flop onto the couch making themselves comfortable with excited giggles and chatter. 

It’s been nice to see how they have already used the space to relax, watch T.V, play the Wii or just chat.  One of the girls came later in the week with a painting she had done to hang on the wall as well as some artificial roses she wanted to put in a vase.
I am really looking forward to being able to watch these young people grow and develop further as they begin this new stage of their lives.
You can read more about why this program is so important here at the ZOE blog!