Dave chats with Tania Harris from God Conversations.Tania has just written a book and is coming to Tasmania.
My ministry began with a question at 21 years old. University was over and the future stretched out like a plain waiting to be landscaped. Growing up in church, I’d been taught that God had a plan for my life, but faith still felt like a list of ideas somebody else believed in. I knew a lot about God, but I’d never experienced him personally. I wondered what he sounded like and how hearing his voice would effect my life. So I made God a promise. If he spoke to me clearly, I’d do whatever he said.
The answers I received became the signposts of an unlikely journey that started with working in the developing world with Wycliffe Bible Translators, teaching Primary students sport and caring for youth-at-risk with YFC Australia.
Then at 25, God called me to full-time ministry. At the time I had no idea what he meant. In my background, women weren’t allowed to carry the offering bag in church, much less be pastors. Back then, my ‘career’ aspirations amounted to perfecting a chocolate triple-layer torte and crafting the mitered corners of a patchwork quilt.
So it was back to study and a Masters degree, before pioneering a church in a beachside suburb of Melbourne with the Australian Christian Churches. Later I ministered in two different Bible Colleges – Harvest Bible College in Melbourne – and Hillsong College in Sydney, where I worked as the Academic Dean.
Today you’ll find me speaking in churches and conferences around the world or at home developing resources for the blog, TV, radio and various publications. My home church is Hillsong in Sydney and I have a fabulous leadership team who are my spiritual family. I couldn’t do this without them.
When not working, I’m likely to be hiking a very tall mountain and skiing down it, or paddling a kayak in the early morning on Sydney Harbour! I love to explore unknown places and I can still bake a decent chocolate cake (though admittedly I’ve lost a bit of flair of the early days).
Hearing God’s voice not only led me to unexpected places, but drew out the best of who I was. God’s heart is for every person to know him for themselves. His words are powerful and transformative, revealing a God who is eminently personal, delightfully creative and surprisingly funny. Hearing him speak gives us the faith and inspiration to live beyond our wildest imaginings. My prayer and the prayer of my team is that you will recognise the voice of God in your own life, and in doing so, you’ll find the courage to follow.