The road hasn’t always been easy for Cantabrian Danielle Earl, but once she was touched by the love of God, there was no going back. She shares with us a piece of her inspiring journey.
My name is Danielle Earl and I’ve been part of the Christchurch City Corps (CCC) for the past eight years. I’m 25 years old and living and loving life on my own (with God). I’m a nurse, a twin, have a younger brother, and am a first-generation Christian in my family.
I was born and raised in Christchurch by my loving mum and dad. Despite separating when I was 10, they chose to—and still—remain friends. They put us kids first in everything they do and I’m forever grateful for their unconditional love and support.
I first came to CCC when I was 17 years old with the Robertson/Pattinson family. They gifted me my Bible, which has been well loved. Inside reads this message from them: ‘We have and will continue to pray that one day you will open this book and realise you can’t live without it or God’s love in your life’. Then, at Easter Camp 2012, two years after coming to CCC, I accepted Jesus into my life and have never looked back.
During my journey as a Christian over the past eight years, there have been many incredible moments and seasons. But there have also been various trials and times where my faith has been tested. We can lose all or part of our faith during these times. The last two and a half years in particular have brought many trials, but this has also been when I’ve seen the most growth.
At one point I was left with a choice—a choice to continue being a Christian and choosing God, or to walk away from it all. It wasn’t easy, but I continued to choose to seek after Jesus.
A recent trial I continue to face began three months ago: my grandma was involved in a serious car accident and was left in a critical condition. It was an emotional and stressful time for my family. Being a Christian in the midst of this really highlighted to me that our God is faithful, forgiving and loving. In the past I would have blamed the person that did this to Grandma. But instead, I chose grace and forgiveness.
During this time, I sought God and prayed by Grandma’s bedside. Despite spending seven weeks in ICU in an induced coma and four weeks rehabilitating, she is now at home recovering. She is my inspiration and it’s a miracle and answer to prayer she’s alive today.
The song Still by Hillsong has been reassuring to me during hardships. It reads: ‘When the oceans rise and thunders roar, I will soar with you above the storm. You are the King over the flood and I will be still knowing you are God’.
James 1:2–4 speaks of this: ‘For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow, so let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed you will be perfect and complete.’
When I face trials in the future, I pray that I will meet them with perseverance. I seek him, I remain faithful and I am reassured the storm will pass. After each trial I have encountered, my faith has grown and made me stronger, and I am well equipped to face trials and battles with Jesus by my side.
(c) 'War Cry' magazine, 8 September 2018, p11- You can read 'War Cry' at your nearest Salvation Army church or centre, or subscribe through Salvationist Resources.