7 August 2017
e-connect talks spiritualty with Lieut-Colonel Lyn Edge: ‘I was a social worker, at the time, working in a movement where very few members were social workers and Salvation Army officers. I thought that was a call on my life; to be available to God in that way. For me it was a response, to be a good steward.’
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e-connect talks spiritualty with Lieut-Colonel Lyn Edge
e-connect: When and how did you become a Christian? A Salvationist? A Salvation Army officer?
Lieut-Colonel Lyn Edge: I was nurtured in my faith by my family. I was in my late teens when I came to that faith in a new way, but I was first nurtured as a child into seeing the world as God’s. In my late teenage years there was something that became more profound for me; my own sense of God…
That was also connected to me becoming a Salvationist; which was a way to demonstrate something that was going on for me, spiritually. Since my family were Salvationists, soldiership membership was the obvious path for me, to give expression to my new faith and discipleship.
Officership came much later. I had become a social worker in out of home care, working outside of the Army, and then I came to work within the Army as an employee. Officership was, for me, very much a question of stewardship; of who I was and how God had gifted me; what my professional skills were…
I read an article that suggested we had the ‘calling’ thing wrong if we were merely passive, waiting for God to call us in some mystical manner.
The questions for every Christian should be: who am I, how am I gifted and skilled, and how can I best use that? I was a social worker, at the time, working in a movement where very few members were social workers and Salvation Army officers. I thought that was a call on my life; to be available to God in that way. For me, ‘calling’ was a response; to be a good steward.
e-connect: Who are the people in your corner? Who sustains you, encourages you?
LE: I am incredibly blessed by long-term, profound friendships. I have people who have done a long journey with them and with me, I love them and they love me. That is very enriching, and I do not take it for granted, because not everybody has that. It’s an amazing circle of friends – we are each other’s cheer squads.
Professionally, The Salvation Army is in my corner. I have been nurtured by the Army, I’ve been equipped and given amazing opportunities, organisationally.
I also happen to have an incredibly smart and talented husband [Lieut-Colonel Terry Grey], and I am blessed with my family; my parents and grandchildren.
e-connect: What makes you laugh out loud?
LE: Shaun Micallef! I am a big fan of ‘Mad as Hell’. I love that show, he is very sharp and funny.
e-connect: You see that there is a spot in the world for the jester; the holy fool?
LE: I think that joy and grace will get us through life, and through Australia One as well. The minute we stop being able to laugh and have joyful spirits, this world is going to be a miserable place.
e-connect: How do your family and friends describe you; what kind of person are you perceived to be? How do you view yourself?
LE: As a people person, and a warm person. My friends know me fairly well.
e-connect: How do you best experience God?
LE: In relationship; the nurture that I feel. I have grandchildren, and the immense love and nurture of those children… with my own friends and family… also, when I swim and when I run.
e-connect: There is that beautiful quote in the film Chariots of Fire, from Eric Liddell, the Scottish Olympian and rugby union player …
LE: ‘When I run I feel His pleasure…’ Exactly! It is a very embodied sense of God. I remember once I said, ‘If I stopped running, I think I’d stop praying…’ [laughs] I am not fast. I am very slow and I just plod along. But it brings me close to God… swimming and running, there is nothing happening except me and God and the beautiful place I am in. They are very real places of prayer for me.
interview by Barry Gittins