Support Jess at Bible College
$210 Raised
4% of $5.5k goal
2 contributors
2 Years running

Thank you!!!!

Many of my friends and family have asked how they can support/love me as I finish Bible College at Hillsong...well here's how:

1.)  Prayer.  I need this more than anything.  

  • Pray that I stay healthy physically, specifically that my thyroid and adrenals stay strong.  As well as my immune system functioning properly and normally.
  • Pray for personal and spiritual growth.
  • Pray for my relationships both in Sydney and back home in the USA.

2.)  Check in.  

  • Send me a Facebook message or e-mail.  I love knowing how you are all doing! And I would love to pray for you and see all God is doing in your lives.  

3)  Financial.

  • Probably the most tangible way to help me.  I will NOT be working because it would be unwise for my health. Thus I will be relying completely on the support of others.  I trust God and He has already provided me most of my costs!

Below is an explanation of the past year and what has transpired since falling ill (originally posted to Facebook on May 15th, 2014) :


There and Back Again - The Past Year

I am a control freak. Control. FREAK.

And I have spent the last 11 months learning over and over again what it means to trust God. Completely. Without reserve. AKA: not having control.

Let's just say the last year has not gone on as planned...

Many of you are aware that I left school in Sydney, Australia to come home because of health issues. But not a lot of you actually know what happened and to what extent I was sick. I just wanted to share all that has happened since June of 2013 and where I am at now.

I actually started becoming sick in October 2012. I had gotten an infection and with the help of a LOT of antibiotics it went away (so I thought). Fast forward to June 2013...I had progressively worsened. And by "worsened" I mean went from 80% health down to 20%. Couldn't walk, couldn't eat, constant pain in my stomach and back, the list of symptoms goes on. By that point I had seen multiple specialists on multiple occasions, taken many medical tests, and spent thousands of dollars. I had probably missed over a month of school. Finally my American doctors, my parents, and I decided it was time for me to come home. My brother, Jared, had flown out to Sydney to visit and with the help of him, a wheelchair, and some amazing flight attendants I made it home on July 10th, 2013.

Those first two weeks home I don't remember. Honestly I slept anywhere from 14 to 18 hours a day, never leaving my house. Barely leaving my bedroom! My mom - who never let me skip school unless I was literally throwing up - wouldn't have let me leave the house even if I could. Recovery was long, painful, and confusing. Trips to the hospital, specialists, and the pharmacy was draining. I swear I was feeding a coven of vampires from the amount of blood the hospital took for "tests". By August of 2013 I was on 14 different medicationsand supplements and had 21 documented symptoms.

What made me so sick? Well, it was actually a combination of things. That infection I had gotten a year before...well apparently it had spread to my digestive track. That and anemia and a weakened immune system caused a full system crash! My thyroid stopped working. My small intestine stopped working. My body stopped absorbing some major nutrients while also failing to produce important proteins and enzymes. I was diagnosed with spondyloarthritis (which is a fancy term for swelling of the spine). I had hypoglycemia. I couldn't eat gluten. I stopped working.

C.S. Lewis stated in Mere Christianity that, "Faith is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods."

I'm not going to lie. It's been a very hard year. Very confusing. Very painful. There were days were I was angry at God and days where I pretended He wasn't there. Days where I hid by Bible under my bed. And days where I refused to touch my guitar as if I could get back at God that way. My mood...wasn't good.

Yet despite my mood, God continued to show His faithfulness. He has blessed my time home and used me in ways I would have never guessed! (((shout out to my YC students!!))) A constant verse that has held me together through this time of complete lack of control over my body is Matthew 6:26 "Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?." And four verses later Jesus continues to encourage his disciples, "But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith!" I know that I know that I know that Jesus will never fail me. This season has taught me that.

The good news is I am doing so much better now! With the support of my family, my church, my health care providers, and many of you I have made the slow recovery. Complete diet changes, medications, exercise, rest, and the grace of God has brought me back to where I am now. Before I couldn't spend more than a couple hours out and about without having a symptom "crash" but now I can do a whole weekend of church! Despite the sickness, this has been such a cherished season for me. I've been able to reconnect with my home church and make new connections with many of my hometown: the people of Whidbey Island will always have a special place in my heart. And wow! The love and support myself and my family have received has been incredible. Thank you for your prayers and love.

So What Now?

I'm headed back to Sydney to finish my second year of Bible college at Hillsong. I am so excited to return in less than a month! As my health has increased there were a lot of questions as to what I would do, but the Holy Spirit has made it so clear that I am to finish what I started.

The Lord has been so faithful to me throughout this entire journey. He has lead and directed each step, as painful as it might have been at times, and I know He has His best for me. Plans for a hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11). And I am EXCITED! I am ready! And I am not in control. And I'm okay with that. I'm actually good with that, because God knows better than I do.

His grace has brought me this far, and it is by His grace that I will continue on in wherever He leads.

1 Corinthians 15:10 " But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me did not prove vain..."

*** Donating to this page will go directly to my PayPal account and then to my personal banking.  IF you prefer to pay directly to Hillsong College please email me for details on how to contact them directly. ***

Activity highlights See all 2
Follow this campaign to receive updates by email.

People just like you

People just like you have raised $88+ million for causes they and their friends care about.

Start your own campaign
Recent contributions