5 minutes with Gayle ...
Tell us a little about you
I like to think that I am a bit of a mystery to people – or maybe I am just a mystery to myself! My life includes a lot of contrasts… I love to travel and explore but am also content to put down roots, fairly shy but willing to chat to strangers, like Beethoven and Radiohead, love sleeping but stay up late each night, lecture at a Baptist Theological College and am on staff at a Presbyterian church, teach people how to write essays but find them hard to write myself… Glad that I am not a mystery to God!
What's your favourite bible passage & why?
So many to choose from, but I often come back to Colossians 3:12-17 – a beautiful and inspiring picture of who we are as a new community of Christ.
How do you keep your eyes fixed on Jesus?
I have realised I have to be intentional about this! I am often struck by the beauty of God’s word; how God has woven recurring themes into stories over centuries, the depth of metaphors, the way that Jesus constantly surprises me. I try to read through a gospel a month.
What would you like the next generation of Christian women to know?
There are plenty of things you do not know, and might never know, about God’s plans and about your life…but don’t be afraid to live out your faith adventurously knowing that God is in your past, present and future.
What's one thing that you love about your church?
I love that my church encourages people to use their gifts and is that this is not bound by age, status or gender. I love being led in prayer by a teenager, being greeted at the door by a five year old, and challenged in faith by someone in their 80s. While our diversity means we have to be deliberate about unity, it is delicious when it works!
What did you learn about God at a time in your life you found hard?
In my 20s my immediate family was close emotionally but scattered geographically (at one stage we were living on 4 continents – it’s down to 2 now but in 3 Australian cities!). I had to learn that my family was not ultimately mine but God’s – but that God had also gifted them to me. It has taught me something about the way God creates us for relationship and his presence in the midst of life.
What are you passionate about?
Helping people learn and grow in confidence. Good literature. Music that makes you move with joy.
What do you enjoy doing when you rest?
Exploring new parts of the world, walking without headphones, laughing with friends and family, watching the ocean or a river, reading a good book, cooking for and sharing a meal with others, napping on a sunny afternoon.