a local tourist

One of our list of things to do, even since we met, was to gradually visit all the capital cities of Australia – together!  As singles we’d seen certain places in Australia but we love our country so much we came up with the idea to make a challenge to go to every capital city this fine land has to offer – together!

So far we’ve nearly completed the east coast, which if you know Australia IS the majority of the capital cities, with Hobart we are visiting at the end of this month for our anniversary.  Sydney, Canberra, Melbourne are all complete.But of course there is our little Brisbane – our home!  We become tourists in these other cities, exploring things even locals probably haven’t ever seen.  Which got us wondering about our beautiful Brisbane.  We should be tourists in our OWN city!We get out and see different restaurants and cafes pretty much every week these days as the food scene here is just exploding with new dining precincts and restaurants…but it is the scenery and the suburbs we’ve never explored that needed to be done.

So with our brains not having to do any of the thinking thanks to Sir Google, we found a historical walk in a place I never knew was a suburb in Brisbane – Mowbray.

And off we went – on a historical walk for a Sunday afternoon date!  Step by step instructions and information made this walk really interesting and we started it with a lovely picnic by the river!

It’s definitely something I think everyone should do!  Be a tourist in your own town.  See things you would usually see through the eyes of a local.  A lot of people tend to always go to the same places – I know we do!

For all you Brisbaneites or Brisbane visitors – here is the link to an East Brisbane walk – complete with guide.

And here is our little excursion in images.   Brisbane is definitely a beautiful and interesting place and we love all things property and architecture – so this was definitely the walk for us!





No. 58 Stafford Street – “Hester Villa”. Built in 1901 for mariner and Pacific Islander recruiter Captain Pearn. Recently restored by an architect but still has a penny from 1901 nailed above the front doorway!

A heritage listed building, “Triumph Theatre” circa 1927 and the only intact interwar picture theatre to not get knocked down…however – its currently a Kung Fu academy. Still a beautiful building!

What I love about Queensland – it’s Queenslander Houses. With our family home being one (except orange), its always something I get drawn to – and this one is a beauty!

To me, one of the most picturesque schools in Brisbane – Churchies or the Anglican Church of England Grammar School. It takes up this whole street on Oaklands Parade with some of its oldest buildings were buit at the end of World War 1 from 1918!

Still at Churchies -this Chapel was completed in 1934! Such an incredibly beautiful building! I’ve always wanted to buy a house with red brick – so love this! Maybe they’ll let me live in it 🙂

and like all good tourists – you end your shot with a little bit of peace!!!


07/10/2014 8:53am

How fun! Great pictures – we are SO bad about this – exploring our OWN city!!!!


07/10/2014 9:14am

Looks like you guys had fun! I love touring my own town. 🙂



Path to Faith [my testimony]

With me heading to Cambodia next year with the SHE Rescue team, one of the activities we are asked to do is to share our testimony to a group of older children as well as also having to prepare two 30 minute discipleship messages too to a group of children and adults – praying on this one right now as its making me quite nervous!

I’ve been wanting to do this for a while however and have had several opportunities in the “real world” to share my testimony but always choked or worked myself out of telling it.   So I’d like to write it in an effort to help me get the words out and also to share my story of how I became a Christian (Skip to the end if you’d like the abridged version haha).

Growing up my sisters, mum and I attended Seventh Day Adventist Church for what I can remember as being a few years when I was quite young and was a part of Sunday School.  I remember singing songs ♪this little light of mine♫ etc and learning Bible stories as well as walking over to the “adult” church and sitting in the back pews listening to the very serious ominous sermons, to hymns as well as watching my Nan and Grandad sing along.  No harsh memories from it.  I actually remember enjoying it as a little girl.

I guess things change as you become a teenager and at times, I flitted between certain groups of people in high school, the nerds, the hippies, the goths, alone and although I had plenty of friends – I never felt like I belonged to a certain group….until I became good friends with a few in the “goths” group.  Very stereotyped I know.  Long story short I was always around talk of people not believing in God and openly saying he didn’t exist.   Something I went along with.  Never wanting to say my opinion out of fear that I would ‘lose’ friends or be alone.  Typical teenage behavior because of course you know you are different in some silly way to everyone else even though you are all the same.

This continued as I started a relationship straight out of school with someone in the group who I was friends with and he was there through one of the toughest times in my life, my dad passing away, and I clung to him because of this.

I spent the next 8 years of my life in a relationship with this person who vocally said they didn’t believe in God.  I went along with that knowing full well that I was turning away from Him – and I just ran further.

The thing is, I know I didn’t believe it….any of it!   I always knew God existed.  I couldn’t explain it any other way.   However I chose to ignore this.  I think partially because I didn’t fully understand what believing in God meant and also because I was around people who often blamed God for things that men/women had done.

I honestly always knew there was something missing in my life though yet I instead replaced it with parties, drinking and in the end, a relationship which nearly broke me after he cheated on me in our 8th year.

I felt alone.  Very alone and very wronged.  And I knew that something was still missing from my life – not the obvious that I wasn’t in a relationship anymore.  I knew it was God.  There was one stage when I’d been out clubbing and drinking with a new set of friends and came home and cried myself to sleep hoping that things would change and I’d feel happy again.  I knew I had to change and I was looking in all the wrong places in an effort to find it.

A chance to go to a party of people I’d never met before soon changed that and I went along and was lucky enough to meet my now husband there and I deeply and strongly believe and know that God led me to my husband so that my husband could lead me to God.

I knew he was a Christian though he never openly discussed it with me or talked about it to me or actually never said “come to church with me”.   He left to church and I stayed home.  Then one day, I just went with him.  And I went to church for the first time in over 20 years.   I took that leap and went one time because I loved my husband and wanted to be involved in what he was doing and to see what it was like.


And I’ve been going back ever since.    Though it took me a little while to get used to this “non traditional” singing (there were no hymns!!) and all the hands in the air!  It was definitely foreign to me.

Just over a year after that, in May this year I was water baptised (see my video here)…which was such an emotional moment for me I’ll never forget it.  In the words of one of the men who lay me into the water and came up to me and pulled me aside afterwards.  “you were such a heavy weight when we lent you back into the water it was hard to hold you and when you came back up you were so light like you weighed nothing”.  I felt the exact same thing.  it was also great in that there were some Pastors there ready to speak to you about what God was saying to them about this moment and some kind words from my brother in law about Faith.  Such a moment to be surrounded by my family and great people.

I guess my point is that I knew where I should be and ran from it.  And as much as you can run away from something, it will always find you.  It’s just that in your effort to run away from something, you choose a road which ends up being full of bumps and dead end roads filled with emotionally heartbreaking decisions.   When it doesn’t have to be like that – there was a clear path for me and I knew it.  I knowingly turned away.  I know that now – because God was all around me in so many ways.  

I ended up running away from my faith and making bad decisions when I knew I’d end up being here all along. And I didn’t have to go through all that heartache to get here if I just had turned towards the Lord and followed His voice.   

My husband likes to compare my journey to Jonah and the Whale.   Jonah disobeyed what the Lord had told him to do and headed in the opposite direction even though he knew he should be where he was told – yet he went as far away from where he was supposed to go as possible.    It took him through a violent storm and  into the belly of a whale for 3 days and 3 nights, all the while knowing full well that he was openly running away from the Lord.

My life has changed in so many ways since I came to Christ and I am filled with a renewed sense of happiness and peace in my heart that I’ve never EVER had before.  I no longer fear death and I am constantly amazed at how God is working in my life and those around me.  I love that I am still growing into my faith, learning constantly and getting to know all that our Lord Jesus Christ has done for us is just blowing my mind.

The weight has definitely been lifted and to know that I, for now and forever, have someone by my side to love me unconditionally and forgive all my disbelief – is worth the journey!


01/12/2013 6:44am
 This is so cool! I love that He is always just waiting with His arms wide open, desiring us to run back to Him! So glad you did!!! xoxo
01/12/2013 6:12pm
oooo thanks Caroline 😀 me too!!
03/12/2013 4:18am
 What a beautiful story of God’s redeeming love. Our testimonies are our love stories showing how deeply God has cared for us over the years. No matter where we are or how far we run we cannot hide from his love. God is so good!!! Thanks for sharing this Finley!
12/12/2013 8:04pm
Thanks Charity. It often felt like such a big thing for me to share my story both verbally and written but once I started it all just flowed and I’m so proud of my journey cause it has a pretty darn good result 🙂
03/12/2013 2:48pm
 Love reading your story girl! Such an amazing one! THank you for sharing.
12/12/2013 8:05pm
 Thanks for reading Angela!!! it’s a nice feeling to realise my walk and definitely helping me to be able to express my story better when it comes time next year 🙂
04/12/2013 7:40am
 Such a beautiful testimony! Our stories are super similar 🙂 I just love how God totally CHOOSES His children, and He will chase us to the end of the earth with such patience. I’m going to Uganda in January, and I have to practice my testimony, too! I’ll be praying for you as you prepare for your trip! ❤
12/12/2013 8:01pm
Oh thanks Amy. How fab we have similar stories! 

wow Uganda how awesome! Would love to hear what sort of prep you’ve been doing and what you will be doing over there! Heading over to your blog now to stalk hehe

04/12/2013 5:43pm
I love your testimony! It’s so amazing to hear how Jesus can come in and put your entire life right in order and you finally feel whole. I know exactly how you felt and went through a similar situation of knowing I was missing something! God knows how to get your attention and put the right people into your life! It fills me with joy to read stories like this! So happy for you and your salvation!
12/12/2013 8:03pm
Oh thanks lovely Jena. Its a lovely feeling of realisation and I’ve become a better woman for it thats for sure! Love that we went through similar 🙂
10/07/2014 1:57am
I really think it’s so cool how you said you felt like God led you to your husband so your husband could lead you to God. You have a beautiful story of redemption, and I’m glad you shared!


not in my time


A few revelations after this weekend….what a weekend oh my heart!!!!  Let me just delve straight into it 😀

I need to trust in the Lord – FULL STOP!

I need to pass EVERYTHING over to Him.  I need to surrender my over thinking little brain to Him.
I need to give Him my over wrenching emotional heart.  I need to give all my worries to Him.

And as much as I know I need to be doing these things > > > I want to be doing these things.

We’ve just been home a few hours from what has been an absolutely spiritually awe inspiring two days.  My mother in law for the past few weeks as been talking about a man who just walks in the Holy Spirit and is so God filled you have to meet him.

So she arranged a dinner for last night, we headed over at around 3pm and not only did we get the chance to meet other lovely God filled people but we met this man, this man Steve.

Of course if you’ve been reading my posts you’d know that I am what some call a ‘baby believer’.  I am on a journey in finding my faith and I have found it in abundance!!!    I have been happily seeking the Lord and been immersing myself in all things Him!!! Reading and listening and as much as I haven’t been reading as much as I’d like to have these past few weeks, I have been listening a lot to my thoughts, or actually my heart.  Been trying not to over think and just do and most of all pray!!

I knew it going to this meeting at my mother in laws that it was going to be something I’ve never seen before on my Christian walk so far.  I know how overwhelmed I get with new things.

So before I left the house I went to my room, got on my knees and prayed.  For good conversation, for it to flow, for my nervousness to not stop me from saying what I felt, for me to not be afraid to speak out my thoughts and to most of all hear from the Lord.

Listening to Steve, his wife and step son who came to my mother in laws home as well as a few other of her friends and my brother in law, it is something I’ve never witnessed before.

I have never been a part of a group prayer session.  Can I just say WOW!!!  I’ve never been a witness to others testimonies!!!  And I’ve never met anyone who is just so sincerely passionate about God and so happy to walk into strangers homes, all around Australia to speak and preach the word of God with them.  Not in a Church but to come into peoples homes and speak and hear peoples testimonies and to just sit, in a circle and praise and worship God.

Unbelievable eye opener.  My mouth had no words to be honest.  I was actually feeling complete happiness these past two days.  Completely open to learn and hear from someone I’d never met and now someone I will never forget!

As I said, I had some really amazing revelations from not only hearing him preach to us but by hearing about other peoples journeys and their testimony of how Jesus Christ came into their lives.

1.   I want to wake up everyday and trust completely and wholly in the Lord.   I want to give all my worries,  all my fears, all my heartache over to Him.

2.  I have to trust in the Lords plans.  And this came from testimony from my brother in law who waited 12 years for their little one year girl.  I need to trust in His timing.  To surrender all my longings for a child to Him and have such unyielding faith in the Lords plans for us to have children, that it will come by the hands of God – no one elses!!  Something that will stick with me forever is this;

“We have to bring ALL glory to God for the child that we will one day have.  We should not be giving glory to a Doctor or IVF for our child but ONLY because of the grace and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ that we be given such a miracle!!!”

Just unbelievable for someone to hear…well for me to hear…when its been so okay to me to do IVF if it means I get a child out of it.   That I will do anything I have to TO get a child….when the answer is of course right there.  Stay faithful and our God will deliver ALL the longings of your heart!!!

Enter revelation stage door left haha!!!

It is a tall order.  I know it will not be easy! But I have to understand that it is not under my control.  We live in a world where we want something now and we get it…put it on credit card, interest free, go into debt – its yours!!!

But its not about any of that.  It’s about trusting in God’s timing.  Trusting in His plans for our lives.  No matter what that timing is.  I need to remain faith filled and honest and open about my relationship with Jesus Christ and honor His timing and leave it in His hands….and in my faith!!

Pretty amazing weekend.  Just so so special about the people I am meeting through my walk with Christ.  Unbelievable things I am learning about myself and those around me.

Now I just need to let this giant pill digest.   And I feel exhausted (the good kind!) after just hearing all this and listening to others testimony and hearing Steve preach…..can’t imagine how he is feeling haha!!!

This weekend has brought another aspect into my journey of faith.  Awesome!  I could go on and on and there are quite a few other things that grew in me too that I will definitely have to share soon – there are  A LOT of thoughts going on in my  nerdy little head right now I can tell you!!!!

Hope you all had an awesome weekend!!!  What’d you get up to?

…and as a quick side note:  just recently bought God’s Plan for Pregnancy thanks to the lovely suggestion of Caroline at In Due Time….only having read a few pages so far I can definitely see that this book will help us even more!!! So thank you!



04/11/2013 4:10am
 Wow – I wish I could hug you right now. I love this – I love what the Lord is doing in you and with you. And isn’t corporate prayer just amazing? So glad you got to experience this weekend. Believing and standing in faith for God’s perfect timing. And, love that you got the book, it will ROCK your world. We have authority in Christ – Hallelujah 🙂
04/11/2013 2:57pm
 “Baby believer” or not girl, you are so wise!! I love reading about your journey and your desires for trusting God! You are amazing!
06/11/2013 4:33am
 Oh Finley this post just touched my heart!! There is just something about praying with others that thrusts us into the presence of God! I am praying for you and your heart my dear friend! Standing in agreement that God will do more than you could even imagine. I know that he is working in us all are working on our nothing hearts. He will satisfy these desires! Your brother in laws testimony is indeed a powerful one! Just a reminder of Gods faithfulness!!