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What Does A Life & Business Surrendered To God Look Like? By Melissa Ahlquist

What does a life and business surrendered to God look like?

The beauty of these questions is that each life that has surrendered themselves to God is the only one that can answer this question. We are all so different and we are all on a journey that will also look so different from each other.

One of the things that I feel to share with you today is about how it is too easy to see someone rocking their business, they seem super ‘got it all together’ and amazing, that we can get caught in the trap of comparing our life with their life, or our business with their business.. or our surrendered to their surrendered.

Once we start down that track we start to forget that there has been a journey for them to get where they are, there has been a journey for you to get where you are, and there has been a journey for me to get where I am today.

Today, I would love to share a little of my journey with you, because it is unfair to only show the highlight reel, a snippet of today without you knowing how I managed to get here.

So, who am I?

My name is Melissa. I am married to a wonderful man and we have two girls together. We live on a hobby farm on the northern outskirts of Perth. I am a daughter of the most high king who also happens to be a serial entrepreneur whilst also working part time in my husband’s parents business. Prior to COVID, I would travel every 4-6 weeks to perform training sessions at Bunnings stores across Australia as part of my job.

This is the standard bio information that people give when asked what they do… but it doesn’t even touch the surface of who I really am. The person that God created. I have been through such a long journey of healing and restoration, which has only been able to happen due to surrendering my life to Jesus.

The world is not what defines me, my husband doesn’t define me and my many ‘hats’ don’t define me… but for quite a long time in my life, I did allow my past and present roles define me… and this is where the story gets a little interesting!

When teenagers were starting to drink and party, I chose to go to church, out of rebellion to my mum. She was against me going to church, and as a 17 year old who was angry, broken and hiding, the refuge of God was very appealing to me… but that isn’t what got me in the doors – the singing was. I have always loved music and the praise and worship drew me in and I was hooked.

Three months later, I made a calculated decision that ‘this Jesus and God stuff seems quite legit’ and I decided that day would be the day I raised my hand to accept Jesus into my life. It was a big decision as I did not trust anyone to know the real Mel back then.

Looking back, no one knew what I had been through and I managed to keep it all well hidden - until I received a phone call that was to rock the little safe world I had built for myself. I was 19 and I had just got my first real office job.

Dave and I had been engaged for just a few months. Just this weekend has been a time of reflection for me, and I can now see that this particular phone call was a pivotal moment in growing up in Christ (very quickly) and the start of a journey of healing and restoration.

Yes or No?

The phone call I received only needed a one word answer, Yes or No. It was from a detective from one of our local police stations, and he just needed the answer to one simple question, but the answer was not simple at all.

Have you ever done a choose your own adventure book? The answer would change my life no matter which way I answered. To answer no, meant that I would be living the rest of my life hidden, in denial of the truth that I had kept secret for many, many years. It would also mean that I had not stood up to protect any future girls in our family.

To answer truthfully, it would mean taking all my courage to tell someone for the first time about what had happened to me for seven years of my childhood… it was allowing God’s light to shine in the darkness of my life, revealing the truth of what was happening in our family, and it would start the process of keeping my step-grandad away from the rest of the girls in my family.

I said Yes.

So often we think that bringing the truth into the light is an easy process, God will reveal the truth and the truth will set us free – and it certainly does… but that truth started a 3 year process of police interviews and statements, unpleasant family discussion and it bought a great big crevice down the middle of my family.