I moved to Norwich on 3rd May, 2014. The day before I moved, as I was packing up the final things that I wanted to take, I sat on the floor of my bedroom and looked around. I took in everything. Books, posters, TV, bed, photos. Memories. I sat on the floor of my room, amidst the mess of my packing, and I didn’t know what to do. My mind had reached the point where it no longer knew how to process what was happening. I was moving out. I couldn’t pack anything more, I couldn’t move from the spot where I sat.
I’d moved out of home before – I lived in Watford for ten months, in a flat with four other boys. But this was different; this was me moving out – probably for good. I’m 24 years old, and have moved my life from Essex to Norwich. In all likeliness I won’t be going back home now, I’ll be moved in with my flatmates here until I get married.
So this was quite a big deal. I like my home comforts! I liked coming home from work and having our family home, full of memories, with all my belongings, full of food! I didn’t like my job, but I had a great home to go back to each night. I had family and friends, I was comfortable.
But God calls us to step out. Step out in faith and follow Him.
I’ve been involved in youth work for around six years, in some capacity. At first, it was as a helper in Sunday school sessions, which turned into leading Sunday school sessions, which turned into getting involved in youth cell groups, leading youth cell groups, and then further involvement in the general life of the Church, particularly youth. As I mentioned above, I also spent ten months living in Watford, working for a Church called Soul Survivor, as part of their youth team.
Since leaving Watford, I had been looking for my ‘ideal’ job, preferably within youth work and connected somehow with the Church. But I was frustrated for 18 months in a job that I didn’t enjoy, and couldn’t understand why God wasn’t allowing me to move on and do what I wanted to do.
But God was teaching me patience. He was teaching me how to be a Christian in the secular working world. He was putting in me the skills and mindset needed to be a driven, motivated worker. It was all in his plan and timing.
And now I’m youth worker at St Thomas Norwich. God calls us to do his work. He knows when we’ll be doing things and where we’ll be doing them. In Jeremiah 29:11 it says;
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
He’s got the perfect plan for us – it’s up to us to decide to follow those plans.
And so as I sat on my bedroom floor, bewildered, confused and scared as to what my future in Norwich might hold, I was reminded again that God has me. God has us all. He doesn’t give us anything that we can’t handle, even if it might not seem like it at the time. And so I got up off of my bedroom floor and continued to pack up my things. I still had all the emotion - I was scared and nervous. But I was also excited, intrigued, and so looking forward to what the future would bring.
And now I’ve been here a month! I’m settling, I’m getting my teeth stuck into the job. And I love it!