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Joanna Gill

A Journey Towards Healing

Three years ago I found myself moving to Kingston to study for my Masters in Composing Music for Film and Television. Growing up I attended a couple of fairly traditional churches in Scotland, and so when I went along to King’s Church in Kingston, it was a quite different experience for me to see how church is done here. Allowing time to wait for the Spirit to move during worship was new to me, and although my initial response was quite sceptical, the friendliness and warmth of the people, followed by good teaching, challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and understand more of how church can be done.

When I finished studying I began working in London – I loved my jobs, loved my church, loved the big city, everything was going really well. I began to feel more and more comfortable and carried on going to King’s for two years. However, during 2012 I started to experience severe muscle fatigue and tiredness, struggling over time to even walk short distances. Unexplained by doctors – no one really knew what was going on. Eventually, after going to see a physiotherapist, I was later diagnosed, as best they could, with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME, also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome).

With little known about cures for ME, I spent a lot of time praying with friends, I went forward for prayer at church, and my elders even came round to my flat and anointed me with oil, but my ME was progressively getting worse. I didn’t understand why this was happening, why God wasn’t taking it away when everything else was going so well.

After a family holiday in September I struggled to make it back to London and decided to move home and take the chance to rest. It was a really hard decision as I loved London, but I knew it was in God’s hands and if he wanted me back he would bring me back. From the moment I got home my parents were an incredible support, and God’s peace helped me stay positive. Even although I would feel so tired and in a lot of pain I would lie in bed and feel His complete presence and reassuring voice. God taught me that the ME was not my identity, He was my identity and there would be an end to it, I just needed to trust him day by day. God was with me and I simply held onto his truth: “And we know that for those who love God, all things work together for GOOD” (Romans 8:28).

Home for no longer than a year, God certainly did work things out for His good and brought me healing! During the year one or two little symptoms went immediately during times of prayer, which was amazing, but on the whole the tiredness and fatigue was a more gradual process as I began to be able to do more and more, with thanks to a physio plan and one or two other helpful bits of advice.

To my joy I moved back to Kingston last September with the privilege of studying year one of the Bethel course in London with a big emphasis on healing ministry – having experienced it myself I was keen to grow in this area. I have also written some music throughout my experience and hope that one day it will be able to help others too.

I feel so blessed to have my energy back again and I am really thankful to God that I don’t have any fear of the future! God has really taught me to look to Him in any situation and to what He is doing. I’ve never been baptised as an adult, and through this experience I now feel it’s the right time, so I’m really looking forward to getting baptised at King’s in April.