Amy’s Story Part 2

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Amy’s Story Part 2

Life hasn’t always been easy. I remember one morning, about 10 years ago after the children had gone to school. I had had an amazing ‘quiet time’ listening to Iona and spending time with God. I glanced at my feet where our golden tabby cat was comfortably curled inside the legs of our black and tan Rotweiller cross dog. I remember thinking what a perfect home and family I had got, married to a successful detective police officer and with two wonderful teenage children. How wrong could I have been because within weeks David started to change? He became withdrawn, often silent and at times verbally aggressive. I was aware he was dealing with some horrendous cases but had never expected it to affect him like it did. Nor was I prepared for the knock on effect this would have within our family.

Things gradually worsened until one Sunday David said he could not do it any more and came off sick from the police. Instead of getting better David completely collapsed mentally and was eventually diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The paedophile cases he had been undertaking had finally destroyed him. Life was so bad that he was never out of my sight, if we went shopping he would sometimes run out of shops in floods of tears, he was terrified of losing me, and even the simplest of skills had deserted him: skills like reading vertical notices on windows and counting and dealing with money. He suffered from panic attacks during the day and was unable to fall asleep without me holding him in my arms and then recurring nightmares continually disturbed our sleep. This lasted for a couple of years. Friends deserted us, as they could not come to terms with the fact that God had not healed him. Eventually David retired from the Police on ill health grounds. I never heard him once blame God. We often talked about the fact that we were confident that somehow God would use this to His Glory.

I remember one night we had taken our caravanette away for a few days and having enjoyed an early evening meal settled down at about 8.00pm to sleep. As usual at this time I slept for 4 or 5 hours then woke, and not wanting to disturb David would lie awake for hours and use this as my time with God. I didn’t switch a light on but lay in the dark the words of hymns would come to me. Some of them came to be very important to me, becoming even more real during these night hours, as I meditated on their wonderful words. Words like ‘Open now the crystal fountain whence the healing streams doth flow’ became prayers to me. I found myself very conscious of God’s presence with me and His hand leading and guiding us into the future He had for us.

A few months later David was invited to a Reinhart Bonke crusade, by a friend who had once worked with him in Africa. David left excited as he believed that God was about to heal him but returned hours later despondent as after prayer he had felt that nothing had happened. A month later he turned the corner and within days was noticeably better.

One of the trauma specialists had told me that things would never be the same again describing how when a balloon has been blown up it can never return to its original shape. I believe in a sense this was God preparing me. We sometimes lightly sing “Break me, melt me, mold me, fill me” but I saw this transformation happening in the man I loved. And the man that came out of the illness was indeed quite different. As a policeman David was confident but sometimes arrogant, hard and sometimes lacking in sympathy. I now have a gentle, capable, passionate, loving husband. The children have a new caring Dad. David is a gifted evangelist and preacher. Our life together is fantastic. God has truly done an amazing work.

We work together as a team with David the evangelist and vision setter and me as the teacher/ pastor. Our giftings complement each other and it is often David’s ideas that see my giftings being used to the best. We use our life experiences to tell people of Jesus’ love and the new life that is possible through His sacrifice.

David and I have now been married for 28 years and following Jesus continues to be an exciting adventure. Four years ago we finished studying and now are both pastors.