Update from Tracey Moyes, Swaziland
Celebrating a good God, Who restores more than we can think or imagine...
To all my friends and family
God is faithful and He is incredibly good!
Does that statement resonate with you or does it jar against something inside you that believes it is simply not true? Does it make you smile or does it reveal a pain that is lingering in your heart?
I have been at both ends of the spectrum in my journey through grief and out into the other side of it. There have been times when I could not believe that God would ever feel good to me again. My “knower” inside me knew He was good but my heart was saying it wasn’t true for me.
I remember how some years ago, God had me on the floor in the UK as I wept over the pain of loss and grief and I was struggling to believe that God was faithful or good. As I lay there and my tears ran into the carpet I heard God gently whisper to me over and over again: “your circumstances don’t determine My goodness. Your circumstances don’t determine My goodness. Your circumstances don’t determine My goodness…..”
As He spoke so gently and reassuringly, I found myself repeating with increasing fervour and conviction: “My circumstances don’t determine Your goodness. My circumstances don’t determine Your goodness….!”
As I repeated this phrase I felt an incredible faith rise up and a reassuring certainty that God IS GOOD!! And that no matter how big the mountain I was facing, His goodness was still bigger. It seemed that the bigger the mountain I saw in front of me the bigger God was in the situation. His goodness was always greater. He could be nothing but good. Did that mean that my circumstance changed? No, not at all! I was still widowed and I was still barren, I still felt the pain of that loss and the loneliness of it. But knowing with full assurance that God was GOOD meant I could hold onto Him in faith and believe that I would see His goodness demonstrated in my life and in my lifetime!
Like David wrote so beautifully and sincerely in Psalm 27:13
"Yet, I totally trust You to rescue me one more time, so that I can see once again how good you are while I am still alive!” TPT
Jump ahead many years and I am seeing the outworking of God’s goodness and His grace in my life. After 2 years and 9 months of serving with Challenge Ministries here in Swaziland, I have seen God restore to me what was stolen. For those of you who do not know I got married on 30 June to a wonderful man with 3 beautiful daughters. How did this happen? You may be asking. Well only by the grace and goodness of God. His promise to restore more than what was taken has been fulfilled.
God spoke to me late in 2016 about a man in our church who was recently widowed. It was one of those moments when God’s voice is absolutely clear yet my doubts and own filters prevented me from listening to Him. His words to me where (as I walked back to my seat after breaking bread in the Sunday service): “You will marry Sean and you will be a mum to his daughters.”
I was not willing to hear this and dismissed it instantly and quite firmly. Rolling on a few months and we began to chat after church about grief and the journey of recovery. As our friendship grew so did an underlying fear of this cannot be possible, it is too soon! Can we risk loving again?! All the while a lovely friendship was developing and something was happening in my relationship with Sean’s 3 girls. There was an affinity that was really special between us and I found my heart completely opened to these precious young ladies. However I was also on a bit of a roller coaster of emotions of not knowing if I had heard God clearly or if God had just not spoken to Sean yet about it; so in exasperation one day I said to God: “If this is of you, give Sean a dream. Because if you don’t I am shutting this door…”
Quite an ultimatum to give to God, thankfully He is gracious and kind. That week Sean had a dream… it changed things around for him and he knew he needed to ask me a question. So that Sunday he came with his daughters to visit me for lunch. As we sat outside on the verandah at Hawane he asked me how I felt about him, because he like liked me… that was on the 22 October 2017. We both knew immediately that this was going to be a courtship and not just a relationship. We knew we wanted to get married. We were excited and couldn’t stop smiling at what God was doing. However the very next day on the 23 October I was attacked and kicked in the face by the crazy / demon possessed man. This was a shocking & horrible blow but we both knew that this was a kick back – excuse the pun – at what God was doing in bringing our lives together. It only served to confirm that what God was doing was a big thing and the enemy was afraid. As soon as I was out of hospital, having had reconstructive surgery to my face, we spoke to the CMS leaders here in Swaziland to seek counsel and to submit our courtship to them. They prayerfully considered it with us and we received their blessing to begin our courtship officially.
It was exactly 6 months after beginning our courtship that Sean proposed to me and we set a date to get married of 30 June 2018. It has been a wonderful journey of God’s faithfulness over the last few months. We have seen His kindness and goodness in restoring what we have lost to even greater measure than we could ever have hoped for or believed. He is a faithful Father who restores!
In 2015 when I received the call from God to come to Swaziland to serve the widows and the orphans, I would never have thought God was calling me here for a widower and his 3 orphaned daughters. (Note that the definition of orphan is simply to have lost one parent.) God’s ways are a mystery and it’s impossible to try to work out the why’s of life. What I do know and understand is that God is faithful and He is infinitely good – our only response to this goodness can be to trust Him in the process and in the journey. To hold onto the truth that our circumstances don’t determine His goodness is a wonderful weight shifter that moves heaviness off of us and brings us to a place of complete surrender and resting from a place of trust. How can we trust Him – we can because we know He loves us and He does indeed turn what was intended for harm into something good!
My role within CMS will now obviously change as I have 3 daughters of 14,12 & 6 (nearly 7) who need a mother’s love and input into their lives. I do however still carry a big heart for the work God is doing here in Swaziland (eSwatini) amongst the orphaned & vulnerable through Challenge Ministries Swaziland. I am therefore continuing to serve with them, as a volunteer, on a part time basis to assist with obtaining testimonies and reporting on them through social media and in blogs.
My love for Swaziland and the beautiful people here, who are still so desperately in need of daily miracles, has only gotten stronger. The vision God has given CMS is very much in my heart.
Which is to win a remnant of people to know God, to be His people to value others and to change our world: to train them up as secure individuals who know and understand God’s love and to send them out to be the 5th gospel to their families, communities, nation and to the world.
Serving with CMS has been an absolute privilege over the last 2 years 9 months and will remain a privilege as I continue to serve God’s Kingdom here in the Kingdom of eSwatini. And although I will no longer be able to serve as an Elim Missionary I will still be serving with CMS as a volunteer.
I would like to extend a huge thank you to all of you who have sown in prayer, love, finances and encouragement. You are a part of each miracle and each transformed life here in Swaziland for it is all for God’s Kingdom and for His Glory. Thank you so very much – you will never fully know what a blessing you are and the impact you have made! I hope some of the pictures below remind you of the faces you have helped...
To those of you who are facing life’s challenges; know that God is good – hold fast to that and allow Him to work and transform your situation into a wonderful new story of His grace and His love. In my grieving years, I often doubted He would, yet He has surprised me again and again with His outrageous love and incredible goodness!
A message from Paul Hudson, Elim UK International Missions Director
Usually I am quite sad when seeing a missionary come to the end of their time on the field. Thankful but sad. However with Tracey I am excited for her and the new chapter that she has moved into. Tracey will continue to prove invaluable to CMS as well as taking up new responsibilities as wife and mother! I couldn’t be more happy for her!
Elim Missions here in the U.K. have been privileged to have Tracey in our missionary family and we have all been the better for her journeying with us.
We now pray blessing on her and know God is leading her as He always has into His unfolding plan for her life. May God bless and continue to use you Tracey
Elim U.K. International Missions Director
Thanksgiving for all that God has done over the last nearly 3 years
Thank God for being a Father who restores beyond our expectations
For the continued work of Challenge Ministries in Swaziland, for the leaders, Kevin and Helen Ward, and for all who are part of the team with them.
For me and my new family as we start a wonderful journey of life together as team "Undies"
If you would like to know more about Challenge Ministries Swaziland or wish to find out how you can support this work through prayer or other means, please have a look at their website: www.cmswazi.org www.bulembu.org