Julie’s Indonesian Go Trip

Indonesia go trip

I am a student at Influencers Leadership College, and I have been given the opportunity to go on a mission trip with a team to Solo, Indonesia in August 2017. This will provide a wonderful experience to use my leadership skills, share my testimony, and encourage and equip the groups of people we will be serving in Indonesia.

We will be sharing and preaching to students at Solo Bible College, at a Youth Rally, and going in teams to preach and share at churches in various locations. We will also be participating in fun youth activities and the Indonesian Independence Day celebrations. Then we will spend three days in Bali to unwind before we head back home to Adelaide, South Australia.

Going on a mission trip has been something I thought was unattainable for me. And without the help of generous people, I would never be able to go. I have set up a GoFundMe page with a goal of $2000 for this trip. $850 has been raised so far from some very generous donors. If you would like to help me get to Indonesia then click on this link or visit www.gofundme.com/juliesindonesiagotrip



Fundraising money

I hav12075093_423823421150326_3115692738937771749_ne been raising money to help my sponsor child’s family have their roof and wall repaired. Unfortunately I got news that the family did not show up on Sunday to collect their food parcel and it was discovered that this widow and her four children have gone to live in Karachi. Because the widow’s husband had died, the house belonged to his family but she had a right to live there. Her husbands’ brothers came recently and saw the poor conditions they were living in so they decided it was best to sell it and they helped them move closer to relatives. I thank God that this widow and family are being looked after.

As I have raised $208 from the raffle and the cake stall, I have decided that this money will be used to purchase two sewing machines. With this facility,  widows and other uneducated women will learn the skill of sewing through Lily of the Valley Sewing School to give them an avenue to generate an income.

The goal of this project is to:12810229_980284368719691_814793743_o-1-400x300

  • To bring relief to poverty.
  • To equip women with the skills and resources to generate an income.
  • To make it possible for poor children to get an education.
  • To stop children from picking up plastic from the rubbish dumps to sell.
  • Helping these women to feed their families every day.
Influential Missions & Outreach Program are an Australian Not for Profit / Charity Organisation. (Est. 2012). They work in partnership with Grace of God Church – Faisalabad, Pakistan. (Est. 1983)

Market Stall

Susie and I had a very impressive looking cake and jewellery stall today at a local market. The jewellery didn’t sell but I made $43.40 from the cakes. Along with last week’s raffle, I have now raised $208.  My goal is to raise $1,500 for my sponsor child’s family in Faisalabad. Next week I will be doing a bottle drive around my neighbourhood so we’ll see what I can get from that. Every little bit helps.


The purpose of this fundraising effort is to help my sponsor child’s family in Faisalabad, Pakistan get a roof on their home and repair the wall that is broken down. With summer coming up also means their wet season, so the plastic sheets that they have for a roof is not going to keep them dry for long.

This is a project that is supported by Influential Missions & Outreach Program Inc. who are an Australian Charity Organisation. One of their programs is Lily of the Valley Children’s home who provide for children who have no home, distribution of food parcels among other things endeavouring to help the poor as much as possible.

Mother’s Day Raffle



Congratulations to Elaine Crowley who won the main prize of a picture, book, jewellery and gym membership. Julia Skane was the winner of the Jamberry hand and nail pamper gift certificate.

The total amount raised was $155 with a further $20 promised.

My goal is to raise $1,500 for this project. So watch this space for further fundraising activities.


I am raising funds through Influential Missions & Outreach Program Inc. to assist in supporting their programs that help poor families in the community of Faisalabad, Pakistan. With this particular project, I am raising funds for my sponsor child’s family of four, who live with their widowed mother, to repair their home. Their house has no roof and the wall to the street is broken down making it unsafe for the family.





This project is supported by Influential Missions & Outreach Program Inc.

Influential Missions & Outreach Program Inc. are an Australian Charity Organisation. One of their programs support Lily of the Valley Children’s Home in Faisalabad, Pakistan to enable them to provide a safe house for children at risk. They also support widows and the poor in their community with food parcels. And they help children to be able to go to school. Some children in the home are sponsored, but many more still need sponsors to help improve the lives of the children they take in.

An unknown path

First night on my new journey camping in a one-man tent

It was 21 December 2013 when I left my home and started on a new venture without knowing where it would lead. But I set the time aside to write a book and see where God would lead me. I gave away most of my possessions, and everything I owned was in my small Laser Lynx car. This photo is the first night of my new life. The following is an excerpt from my journal.

“Today I packed up all my worldly goods into my car. I have left my job so I can be free to go wherever God wants me to go and most of my household goods I gave to my son and his friend. I don’t know where God is leading me, but I am so confident that this is the right time to go and this is the way he wants it.

I’m too tired to know how to feel right now. I have a few coins in my purse and not a whole lot in the bank. I’m sleeping in a tent, that my brother gave me, at Semaphore Caravan Park. The tent is comfortable and I feel a great sense of the presence of God with me. Tomorrow I start my first house-sitting job for two weeks. I believe God will provide all my needs. And I wish to not go on Centrelink benefits.”

About a week later I started writing. The following an excerpt from my book Created to Shine: A journey of faith through the storms of life

“Anxiety wells up within me. How do I start this journey that the Lord wants me to go on? I have left my home and all my worldly possessions now fit into my small car. I am staying in a stranger’s house for two weeks. Everything is so unfamiliar. “How do I walk this road Lord?”…….

……..So here I am finally making my own decision to listen to God rather than man, and to trust the Lord with my future. It wasn’t an easy choice to leave the security of a job and the comfort of a home to walk an unknown path. I found that people felt really uncomfortable with this and again tried to control the situation. It was suggested that I wouldn’t be able to sustain this type of lifestyle for long. There was a steady supply of suggestions with regards to what I should be doing. I had to learn to ignore the advice that sounded good but wasn’t what God had asked me to do. Contrary to popular opinion I chose to go all the way with God, follow his plan, and live a life out of the ordinary.”

For Australian customers, My book can be purchased as a Kindle through Amazon.com.au or as a Paperback through or yourbooksonline.com.au

A trip to remember

Commer van 4It was 1973 when revival came to my family. I was the oldest of nine children, and had seen my fair share of struggles. Mum and Dad had come to a crisis in their faith, and they hoped to find the answers they were looking for as they took a leap of faith into the unknown. Brought up in the Catholic tradition we certainly did not know what a Christian convention was, but we were promised that this would be a life-changing event.

The boys fought as usual for the prized front seat between Mum and Dad. And the rest of us piled into the back of our old Commer van, seated on two bench seats, and headed off for the trip to Mildura.  It was a trip that we all hoped would be the catalyst for a brighter future.

When we arrived at the camp ground, the place was abuzz with anticipation of what the next four days would bring. My grandparents were there waiting for us, and I noticed that people seemed to treat each other like family. It was the first time I had ever experienced such a gathering, and I felt right at home. The night rally’s were my favourite part of the convention as we sang, clapped, danced, played various percussion instruments, and listened to the preachers animated sermons. I drank it all in, and I didn’t want it to finish.

As the camp was nearing an end, we stocked up on several buckets of grapes for the trip home. Turns out that we really needed those grapes to keep us hydrated, because the old van overheated numerous times. The only way Dad was able to keep the van going was to drive real slow. What should have been a 4 hour trip back home took us 12 hours. What I will never forget is the vision my little two year old brother praising the Lord along with us and singing the new songs we had learnt all the way home. It was certainly a trip to remember!

My family inheritance

img-150118212000-009If I ever wondered where I got my adventurous spirit from, all I need to do is look at this photo of my Dad. A young, fit, handsome, and funny guy who loved hiking and camping. God knew he had to be because he was about to embark on the adventure of a lifetime. He had just married a beautiful, charming, witty and strong-willed girl, and he was going to be a Dad.

My grandparents didn’t like this young Catholic who was too idealistic, that had taken their daughter away from the Protestant faith to also become a Catholic. Her father was so upset that he didn’t even attend their wedding. But my parents were in love and looked forward to their future. They dreamed of having a large family and talked about a house with a white-picket fence. There was so much to look forward to.

They felt strongly about their faith and thought carefully about our names, selecting them from either the Bible or from one of the Saints. So our names became Julie Maree, Robyn Louis, Peter Anthony, Stephen John, Paul Gerard, Simon Christopher, Martin James, Joseph Bernard and Aaron Mathew. We went to Mass and confession every week, had family bible studies every night, and every Christmas Eve we played out the nativity scene in our lounge-room with one of our own as baby Jesus.

We had very little money and only a few toys. But Dad’s natural talent for art, photography, music and singing were our inheritance. Both my parents were always looking for purpose, searching for more, while at the same time trying to do the best with what they had. This was the best part of their lives. There’s so much more I could tell you…..but that’s for another blog.

No wonder I am strong, determined and creative. My mother showed me faith and tenacity. I always give something a go, and if that doesn’t work I’ll try something else. But at times this meant that I jumped ahead too quick and made some pretty major mistakes. Yet these have taught me to rely on God’s wisdom, and seek His council before forging ahead.

What I love about my Dad is his great sense of humour, which he still maintains even though he has gone through some serious health issues. He has shown strength through suffering. And he still loves to study the Bible.

Working in the Dark

Working in the darkMuch of the journey of writing my book were met with difficulties. I spent a lot of time in someone else’s home looking after pets. Some places were dark and cold or too hot. Other times I had no access to a computer. I had some periods when after writing a couple of chapters I had to take time off to process what I’d just written and allow healing to come.

One house I stayed had no computer or internet access. So I borrowed a friends old Toshiba XP laptop with the ‘m’ button missing. Because the computer was so old it was slow to work with, and every time I took a break, the thing would go to sleep and fail to load up again. Or it would freeze causing me to force a shut down and start it up again and then it would take a long time to get going.

Some of the paintings I created for the book were met with trials as well, often working in cold rooms with poor lighting. The other problem I had was that I was well overdue for new glasses and my eyesight was failing. But what could I do? Funding was not available at this time to sort that problem out. And because of the lack of money, some of my paintings were produced in frustration taking much longer than it should have because of the inferior paper I was using.

Because I was house-sitting through the whole process, I could only write or paint according to the conditions…or the animals I had to take care of. If they were cats that were allowed to walk on the benches and tables then I had to forget painting altogether. If the animals demanded a lot of attention there was no point writing either. Some places just didn’t allow for that kind of activity.

I am so thankful for my close friends who kept encouraging and urging me to push through. As well as being driven by a God-given steely determination and compulsion to get my story out.

The final outcome? A published book!

My book Created to Shine: A journey of faith through the storms of life can be purchased at Amazon.com.au as a Kindle and yourbooksonline.com.au as a paperback

Laughter is the best medicine

IMG_0580Following on from yesterday’s post ‘Jumping in puddles’ I thought you might appreciate this video called Laughter is the best medicine with Myrtle and Beryl. They are two ordinary women living in an Adelaide suburb and their sole purpose in life is to bring you joy.

I was finding in my own life situations around me where getting too intense. I prayed to God often that He would give me joy in my heart but I couldn’t seem to attain that. That is, until I met Myrtle and Beryl! Now I can’t stop laughing even just looking at their silly faces!

I can honestly say….that laughter is the best medicine and that God did indeed answer my prayer.

To view the video click here

Jumping in puddles

dancing in the rainWhen I was a child I loved storms in summer at the end of a heatwave. In the city where we lived, we used to get some pretty intense thunder storms with lightening often striking buildings near our home. As much as I loved it, the loud claps of thunder would often send me diving under the kitchen table. But after awhile I would join my siblings outside, and we would jump in the puddles and run along the gutters. Fear had been replaced with joy as we danced, ran and slid in the rain.

This can be a great lesson to overcoming fear in our lives. We can either hide from the storm or look for opportunities and find joy in the midst of it. That doesn’t mean that the storm is over, but we learn to look at it differently.

Remember how I said at the beginning of this blog that the storms I loved and enjoyed the most often came at the end of a long heatwave. Sometimes trials in our life, like the heatwave, can be long and hard to cope with. If we allow life to steal our joy, we can end up bitter and hard. I have learnt to look for joy when the storms of life keep relentlessly raging on. And I’ve discovered refreshing rain in the midst of it.