I was born in 1947 in Slimbridge, Glos. My grandparents lived in the next village and every Sunday my sister and I would visit them. On the way we passed a church and I was drawn inside by the wonderful organ music I heard.
Although neither of my parents were Christians, they allowed me to continue going to church and gradually I developed in my understanding of the faith. In particular, about once a month, a group of believers used to meet on the corner of the street and preach and sing and give out tracts. I still treasure these little booklets.
When I was about 10 years old I saw a vision of Jesus in my bedroom. My Mum told me it was a dream, but I remain convinced that it was real.
On leaving school, I became a nurse and in the course of my work, I cared for people who influenced me profoundly. There was one lady who suffered from severe rheumatoid arthritis. She kept a Bible on her bedside table and she was a woman full of grace. We had to move her every half hour and it must have been excruciating for her, but she never complained. Another elderly man was dying from cancer. One day when I was attending to him, he grabbed my arm and said “Finish me off!” What could I say? I just held his hand. These people and others made me ask some difficult questions about life and death.
I was particularly helped through this by other Christian nurses and in particular a lovely lady who became my mentor. She suggested I got confirmed, which is an opportunity to state publicly, that I was a follower of Jesus. This was the best thing I have ever done and I have never looked back since. I pray in every situation and I have never been let down by him.
Jesus came as the “Servant King” and for me to follow him means that I too should serve. I do this through caring for my husband who has dementia, visiting the elderly and the sick and through using my singing voice.
What lies in the future? Who knows? But I know that his “everlasting arms” are holding me in everything I do.