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Youth Column: Our Loving Father Will Always Listen

Youth Column: Our Loving Father Will Always Listen

Monday March 14

Orla Wheatley, 16, recounts a pivotal moment in her journey of faith

I did not find my way to religion in the typical way.

Growing up with an agnostic mother and atheist father, I was also raised as such. I was never christened, or even offered the option of church. I distinctly remember a conversation with my family in the car at age seven when I asked my dad how long it took for God to make
every single person on the Earth since there were so many, and he replied with the simple answer that he didn’t. So, I did as any child would do, I believed it without a second thought.

That was until I was ten, when my little sister asked if we could attend a church Christmas night service. My mother and sister and I went along and instantly I was hooked. The hymns, the teachings and the overwhelming sense of love and peace which radiated from that hall and the people within it inspired me more than anything ever has. I wanted to be like them.

I was the only one in my home who seemed to have this reaction, and I truly believe this was God’s plan. It meant that on many occasions in my home my faith was challenged by my family, and despite how hard this was, it only made my faith stronger, as I had to learn about all of the reasons why what I believed in was truth, in order to defend it.

There was a pivotal breakthrough day in my faith three years later, when I came across a video on prayer, and I don’t know what it was it that day but something just clicked, and I knew there really is a God above us with whom we can communicate. The video said: “I am not saying that prayer is the answer to everything, but what I am saying is that when I do pray, I notice that prayer is always answered, in one way or another.”

From that day on my relationship with God was solidified, I can pray to him whenever I need. If I am lacking strength, or in need of guidance, or just lonely, our loving Father will always listen. I vowed that day that I would try my absolute hardest to make him proud, a vow that
manifests itself into my life every day three years down the line at sixteen years old, and I am eternally grateful for that day, as I believe that day to be the day that I truly became a Christian. 

Orla is a member of Motherwell South Parish Church.

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