Why She Does It: Emma
For our final 'Why She Does It' interview, we're chatting to Emma, who is another member of the MP Core Team. We've so loved hearing from lots of different girls over this summer, and sharing their stories about living for Jesus each day. As the summer holidays draw to a close and we gear up to start a new term, we're pray we will all walk confidently into all that God has for us this year. MP Team x
Item that’s always in my fridge: greek yogurt and summer fruits.
Most under-rated virtue: humility.
Coffee order: a flat white.
Quality I’d most like to have: being able to jump straight out of bed feeling fully awake as soon as my alarm goes off.
1. Tell us what you are up to at the moment? What does a typical day/week look like for you?
I’ve recently moved cities and jobs, so I’m in the process of setting some brand new patterns for my weekly routine. Monday to Friday, after I’ve dragged myself out of bed and inhaled a quick cup of tea, I catch the tube into central London to go to work. My days are usually busy, and I’m fortunate that I enjoy my job which gives me the opportunity to meet lots of people, and allows me to constantly learn new skills. At the end of a busy day in the office, I spend the evenings doing bits and pieces for More Precious, attempting to improve my somewhat hit and miss cooking, and catching up with friends.
My weekends are spent with friends and family, exploring new places to eat (I have this thing about Italian food), and every now and then you may find me running on the towpath by the river. A key part of my weekend is going to church on Sunday evenings - without doubt, it's the best way to re-focus and prepare for the week ahead.
2. What’s the highlight of your week? Which parts of your everyday life do you love most?
One of the highlights of my week comes right at the beginning of each morning. My husband Luke is 100% a morning person and bounces out of bed full of energy (think Tigger from Winne the Pooh). I am the complete opposite and need to hit snooze 10 times before I can even think about saying goodbye to my duvet for the day. So he’s a total hero and brings me a cup of tea to encourage me to wake up, and at the same time, we take a little bit of time to pray together as we kick off our day. I absolutely love it - we pray for each other, pray for the day ahead, as well as friends and family who are on our mind and our gorgeous Godson! This reminds me of what ultimately matters, points me to Jesus right from the word go, and I pray that God would help me declare His name as my number one priority in all the situations I'll face.
3. Why are you doing life in the way you are?
Ultimately, I’m trying to live a life that honours God because He has given me the greatest gift ever - the gift of a relationship with Him and to be called a daughter of the King of Kings. The more I grasp how truly incredible and amazing this is, the more my life will be a light to those around me and I will keep stepping out into all that God has for me.
I think a big way this is playing out at the moment practically is in my work. I am trying to work hard and do my job well, because I think this is an important way that I can honour and worship God. I want to work with integrity because I think that’s a way in which I can use the gifts that God has given me for His glory and I hope and pray that I am able to have a positive impact in my workplace as a result.
4. What is the one big thing that you think God is teaching you at the moment? How is He challenging and encouraging you?
At the moment I feel that God is really teaching me to appreciate the beauty in the everyday, and to seek to use my everyday life - the small moments and the big ones - as an opportunity to enjoy and glorify God. Sometimes I can feel like I'm not making much of a difference in the world - it can be easy to wonder what impact I'm really having.
I think God’s really showing me that I am called to be a light for Him in the midst of my everyday, and actually because of the incredible truth that God’s given us His Holy Spirit to dwell in us, my everyday has this incredible power at work in it too. The same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us. He has the power to work in any situation to bring about good, and uses us to play a part in this too - incredible!
I love these verses from Romans 12:1-2 (MSG): “So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.”
5. When life is busy, how do you make time and space to focus on God? How do you try to keep Him at the centre?
Life often feels busy and as someone who isn’t very good at sitting still, I’m always wanting to actively prioritise time and space with God as I know how easy it is for this to get squeezed out.
In fact, it's in those times when life is so busy that I realise all the more how important it is for me to spend time with God. It's on those days when I feel overwhelmed by all there is to do, that I totally realise I can't do this alone and need God's power and strength. Reading His word, spending time with Him in prayer, and being encouraged by those around me are all key in helping me focus on God's priorities for my life.
Sometimes it’s great to step back - and summer is a great opportunity to do this - and think through what priorities we want to build into our weeks. What do I want to choose to put high up my list of priorities? What matters most to me? What do I want to protect going into this new year?
6. Looking back at the last year, what encourages you about how God’s been at work in your life?
The last year has involved a lot of changes for me - a new home, a new city and a new job. This move was something we’d really been praying about for a while, as Luke and I felt that God had a new adventure in store for us, but wanted to make sure we were stepping into the future that He had planned for us. This period of waiting, trusting Him with the uncertainty and deciding which path to walk down next wasn’t necessarily easy. I like to have The Plan clearly mapped out and prepared in advance, but this wasn’t how things worked out. I learnt (and am still learning!) how to trust God with my future and hold the gifts He’s given me lightly so that I can use them for His glory. He promises that He has a good future for us, and good plans for us. He promises to never leave us and walk with us each step of the way. His promises have never failed and they’re not going to start now. And I think God often uses these times to grow us into the person He’s called us to be. He teaches us patience and reliance on Himself so that we can grow to be a blessing to others.
There are, of course, still many uncertainties and questions I have about the future, which run alongside the battles that all of us face as well as the blessings we enjoy. But I’m so excited to keep walking forward with God at the centre of my life, because He is the way we can live an adventurously expectant and full life and His promises will never fail us.
Emma is the More Precious Development Manager, managing the fundraising and strategy, as well as our busy events programme. Emma is so loving seeing God use More Precious to grow his kingdom, and her prayer is that He would continue to use it for His glory.