Reflecting on 2011

A LOT has happened this year.

A few weeks ago, I was feeling a bit overwhelmed with everything and life in general and I decided to sit down and take note of the things that had happened over this past year. It was good to think through the defining moments of 2011 and how they have shaped me and made me into a better person. This is more for me than anyone else…but feel free to sneak in and have a peek at my reflections.


James & Franchesca get married! An absolutely gorgeous wedding of two beautiful people. I went to school with James and met Franchesca in my last year of school. After moving to Christchurch, I found out that they had met each other and fallen in love. Ohhhhh. So cute! 🙂

Leading worship with some fabulous musicians at New Wine Summer Camp in Kaiapoi, Christchurch and sitting under the amazing ministry of Mike Pilavachi. I learned so much from watching him lead and speak.


Christchurch suffers a devastating earthquake killing 181 people and damaging the buildings in the central city area to such a degree that it is still closed to the public 11 months on.

I sang at two funerals of quake victims who were members of our church. It was sobering. In the middle of leading the worship song “Hosanna” by Brooke Fraser at one of the funerals, my voice broke and I burst into tears as I realised the significant of worshipping God in the midst of such huge suffering. I managed to get to the end of the song…unfortunately the keyboard suffered some snot damage. Haha!

Some friends and I started decorating the city with colourful hearts featuring quotes and verses on hope. The hearts popped up in news photos and were even featured on the cover of Metropol, a local Christchurch lifestyle magazine.

James & Amy get married! A fun, relaxed wedding of two crazy people. I met Amy at University when we were involved in a musical. We ended up flatting together and then one day Amy decided she wanted to live with boys (we were an all girls flat). One of the boys in the flat she moved into was James. She fell in love with his dreadlocks and hippie van. The rest is history!


A friend and I started a book club! Our monthly get-togethers are a highlight for me. Some gorgeous girls have got involved and I’m absolutely loving getting back to the old book-worm I used to be.


Following the large amount of seismic activity in early 2011, the decision was made that we wouldn’t be moving back into our church building until some pretty major strengthening was carried out. For me, this meant a huge shift in the way we do things as we have to make use of a number different venues for our church meetings and will continue to do so for at least another year I would think. Changes changes changes. I’m embracing it!


I traveled to Malaysia, Cambodia and Thailand with some friends and got to miss out on the cold New Zealand winter, well at least some of it!

Sam and Ingrid get married! This was a LONG time coming but it finally happened and it was incredibly beautiful. These two amazing friends met each other in New Zealand while studying and are now living in Malaysia. I love how God brings people together in the most beautiful ways.

I got to perform my original song “We Are Free” at REFRESH Chiang Mai in Thailand. That was quite cool! Love what the REFRESH team are doing in Thailand. It was so fun worshipping with them.


One of the highlights of my year is our annual Labour Weekend camping trip to Okains Bay. This year we had heaps of fun (like always) and I can’t wait for the next camping trip!


Break-ups are not fun. 😦

I traveled to Wellington with my whole family to see my brother perform his final violin recital at Victoria University. We did lots of shopping and had a great time! Special memories.


It was a huge privilege to host to Wayne Huirua at our church. It was so exciting to see him work with our music and tech team and then lead worship and speak at our Sunday service. So blessed, encouraged and challenged!

Ben & Laura get engaged! CELEBRATION. These two are great people and I can’t wait to see how God brings them even closer together and uses them to advance His Kingdom.

Our family celebrated Christmas together – just Mum, Dad and the kids. Our first time being together at Christmas with just the 6 of us.

It’s all a bit of a blur…

You’ll notice there are a few gaps in the months and that’s because some of this year has just been crazy manic and I can’t remember a whole lot. Sometimes it’s just been about getting through, waking up every day and doing what you have to do. It seems like quite a few things have fallen apart and not quite gone to plan. I’m learning to make peace with that.


Written in my diary during the year:

You determine the steps of my life and I will not be shaken.

Bring on 2012!



4 thoughts on “Reflecting on 2011

  1. 2012 is going to be AMAZING for you! You’ve had a really full on year and God has really been sitting beside you and reveling in your fantasticness. I can’t wait to see the things you get up to in this next year.

  2. Roy says:

    Nice one Rachel. It’s good to remember that while 2011 had plenty of unpleasantness, there were nuggets of beauty and goodness in there too.

    May your 2012 be a beautiful one!

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