Name: Katherine Voorvelt
Nationality: South African
Favourite book: YouVersion Bible App
- What does your day-to-day look like, particularly during the past year since the COVID pandemic?
This is a difficult question for sure. So much has happened in my life since the start of the pandemic that almost every day held unexpected things, so there was no real pattern of day-to-day same activity at the same time. Except perhaps that I went to sleep very late each night and woke up very late each morning. This habit, and not a good one, started before the pandemic now that I think about it. It started when my husband died and I retired. The pandemic did not help me kick this habit, quite the opposite in fact. I am only now regulating and disciplining myself in this area with God’s help.
- What have you learned about God and who He is in this season?
Oh my gosh! Where to begin? I have been reminded of the steadfast love of God in a very real way. I have learned more deeply how much He loves us to love Him, and rely on Him fully in our strengths and weaknesses. Our God just loves to be loved, trusted, believed and obeyed. I was so blessed that Pieter Jan preached using the Book of Acts last Sunday regarding faith and obedience. This is currently what I have been strongly reminded of in the past couple of months, through the Word and through my intimate times being with the Lord and praying for help and direction regarding certain real difficulties I was experiencing. I also learnt afresh and deeper about how indescribably massive God’s forgiveness is and the humongous act of love Jesus did on the cross and also coming to earth and living as a man amongst us to birth the Body of Christ.
- How has it been for you to connect with others (friends, family) during this time of distancing?
I don’t think I have struggled with the “lock-down” and restrictions due to the pandemic as much as some. Only because for a while prior to the pandemic I was physically restricted from going about and around, so it was not a shock for me. I was also used to connecting with dear friends, family and prayer partners outside of The Netherlands using the wonderful tools afforded us like WhatsApp and so forth.
However, the most wonderful things is that many very dear friends here in The Hague visited me very often one-on-one, and when I went into isolation a couple of time, I found a way in my home to meet with a friend or family by placing chairs on either side of a glass door in my passage, so it was safe.
Much good praying, chatting, testimony sharing, trouble sharing, and Word happened as always even during this weird time we find ourselves living in.
- Do you have any stories of God answering prayer or breaking through in situations that you’d like to share?
Shooowhee Oh yes! I don’t know where to start. Perhaps I will start by saying that while I can testify a lot to God answering prayers and break through situations, I think it behooves me to say that these past few years have been the hardest in my living memory. I was challenged by so many difficult circumstances and events. I felt like that song “I get knocked down, get up again” was written especially for me. But GOD, my Redeemer… my reason for living and indeed even being alive… he was with me through it all. I cannot go into all the testimonies and stories, you would be reading this “until the cows come home”. So I choose to speak of the greatest of my testimonies of God’s unfailing love in recent months.
I have struggled with a severe eating disorder since I was a small child. It was affecting, for many years, my physical and emotional health more than I can say. It drove me time and time again to the Lord, repenting and asking for help. I had on a number of occasions felt I had some victory, as I would lose weight, and eat healthily even for a few years, but always I felt this band like barbed wired wrapping my brain and fear that I would fail and start the disorder behaviour again… and sure enough I would.
Then, when I all but gave up hope of being delivered of this killer disorder, my daughter told me to stop saying I was trying my best, but to just get on and stop it! I was shocked and embarrassed and not a little hurt. Then she insisted that I confessed that “It is done, it is finished”. It was really difficult for me to confess this but I did. As I said it, I remembered that it was what Jesus had said on the Cross! “IT IS FINISHED”. Being delivered from the eating disorder was part of why He took the Cross on my behalf! A day or two later I realised that the barbed wire around my brain was gone, for the first time since I was a little girl, it was just gone. It is indeed for Freedom sake that we are set free…. free indeed. So that’s the faith and now the obedience – to walk in this incredible freedom. IT IS FINISHED!
- What are you thankful for?
I am so grateful for all of the above, and more, for what the Lord is busy with in my family. What would we do without God? I hate to even imagine.