Reminiscing on our time in Windale, Australia has had me thinking about which story captures our time the best. Though there are so many testimonies of our outreach to Windale, one in particular has been engraved on my heart. It was on a day of ministry in a local shopping center, when God spoke clearly to bring joy and light back into the community. After clear direction from the Lord, me and another team member, Amelia, decided to
walk around the center with “Free Hugs” signs.
We received a wide variety of reactions, both good and bad, but mainly people were shocked. Shocked that we traveled from across the world to give our time, love, and hugs to the people of Windale. This was not a normal act. No one comes to give free hugs to Windale.
After a while of walking around the center with the signs,
security unfortunately asked us to leave.
When this happened, we felt a little discouraged, especially since God was so direct about us doing this. But luckily, we serve a God that always has a plan. A plan that was in fact, much bigger and better then what we were thinking.
When security told us to stop, a mother came up to Amelia and I to tell us
how blessed her family was by the free hugs.
Her daughter, Samantha*, had been struggling with depression and the free hugs brightened up her day. The mother went on to say that her daughter had not smiled that big in a very long time. This conversation lead to us joining the family at a table, sharing our testimonies. I got to share with Samantha my experience with depression, that God had completely turned around and about the happiness that I now have. I got to share hope. Hope to Samantha, hope to the family, and hope to Windale.
God showed our team that He can turn any bad into a beautiful testimony.
Whether the ‘bad’ is getting kicked out of a mall, or suffering from depression, or even a city like Windale. God can take any one of those things and turn them into something beautiful. And He is doing just that, daily.
*The names have been changed for privacy of those mentioned
By: Haylee Carpenter