Home General News Putting on ‘Binoculars of the Heart’ to See Jesus More Clearly

Putting on ‘Binoculars of the Heart’ to See Jesus More Clearly

by ervte

Melissa Thompson grew up in the middle of the bush, surrounded by honey ants and witch larvae, in the homeland of Black Hill near Umuwa, 550 km south of Alice Springs.

One of the five daughters of Kawaki “Punch” Thompson, the fundamental rights pioneer for the remote Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands in northwestern South Australia, she was just a baby when her Father signed the land rights law yielding 10 percent of South Australia -Australia to the Anangu in October 1980. It was the first agreement of its kind in Australia. As chairman of the Pitjantjatjara Lands Council, he had fought for self-determination for five years, navigating genuine opposition in a highly charged atmosphere of racial politics.Putting on 'Binoculars of the Heart' to See Jesus More Clearly

“I grew up with a man who looked after a garden,” the pastor of Salisbury Congress church in Adelaide told Eternity during a break from her studies at Nungalinya College in Darwin.

“So I grew up in the garden with animals and stuff. We had food; we had vegetables, everything. It was like growing up in the Bible. When we were young, we used to bring the sheep back when they went up the hills [and they come] because they know you.

“I understand that God is a gardener. I saw those fruits and vegetables growing, what time to water them, and what the season is – you know, fall and all. We know how to see autumn by seeing the animals.”

“In my blood, I am a child of God because he lived in my Father’s heart.”

Now the first Anangu woman to be a pastor in Adelaide, Melissa, 42, is proud of her Father’s Christian heritage and his fight for land rights for the APY countries.

“I know he marched on King William Street” [in Adelaide] and fought for the land rights for his people, and he got those land rights. And they celebrated when he got that,” she says.

“He didn’t just help the APY countries get the land rights. He also helped Uluru and Ayers Rock, and he helped the Western Australian Ngaanyatjarra people get their land rights. So my Father was a well-known politician. He had a passionate heart for caring for more than 5,000 people. I am his favorite daughter. So I also know from what he taught me. So in my blood, I am a child of God because he lived in my Father’s heart. He had a passionate heart to take over the country.”

As Melissa puts it, her Father had the most impressive start in life – one that ended almost as soon as it began.

“His birth was a complicated story. Before white men came, my grandmother – my Father’s mother – had carried my Father for 39 days, and one day they had to travel from APY land to Northern Territory. She traveled to Areyoga from Ernabella with my dad, so that’s a long way. On the way back to Ernabella from Areyonga, she had my father after they finished their business there. It was on Mt Conner [about 100km east of Uluru]†. That was his birthplace.

“The story went that two missionary health workers followed her trail and followed in my grandmother’s footsteps to get to where she left the baby. They saw that the baby was buried when they got to the baby. My Father was buried, and they had to dig to see the baby. My Father was on the red sand mound in the ground and still breathing the water – the water saved him.

“This is what they said, and that’s why I believe from that beginning until now that Jesus was my friend, my doctor, my everything because those two housekeepers found him, and from that faith, he survived. †

Melissa relates that a missionary in Ernabella told her Father the story of his birth when he was ten years old.

“At that time, he didn’t come to school. But then he knew that God had saved him for a purpose. So he went back to missionary school. Then they started teaching and encouraging him and seeing him as a chosen and special person.

Melissa Thompson with her painting of Jesus and her Christian family.

Melissa believes she is also special because God called her to go to Adelaide 11 years ago due to a supernatural event in their homeland, witnessed by seven family members, including her younger sister and her cousin.

“One night, we ate, and it became night, and there were stars but no moon. There were seven of us, and we planned on doing business and planned to have our cousin’s brother’s funeral,” she says.

“Around 11:30 p.m., there was some noise from the west, the sound of a wind coming up, but there was only one cloud. We saw the cloud and the stars, and that sound was like thunder – God spoke. We heard that and said, ‘Wow, he’s close.’ I was not afraid – I was on my knees. Then we heard a big explosion somewhere, and this light shone brighter than daylight.

“Then it whizzed, and the rainbow went across the land, and the colors came on. All of us, seven of us, saw it, and everyone saw it as a witness. Everyone gave high fives when the light was on and then returned to normal “Wow, did you see that?” I said, ‘Yes, that’s God, people. He says you are special people.'”

Melissa says she heard a voice three times during the light show. “One was like my Father, the other was like someone I know, and the third was Jesus. The voice of Jesus is different. It’s sweet. It’s so soft and not loud. He talks slowly, and I go, ‘Where are you?’ But he was really in my heart.

“The next morning, I gave everyone a high five, and I said to them, ‘That light and what you saw last night, he spoke to me three times – my name – and then I don’t know what’s happening, but I’m going to go to Adelaide to go.”

Melissa first went to a church in Adelaide where the pastor prophesied about her.

“He didn’t know me, but he prophesied about me and said, ‘The Spirit says there is a white dress for you, and there is a key for you. And there is a bus for you and a building for you.”

A pastor at Paradise Church and now at Adelaide Congress Ministry in Salisbury, Melissa has a key to a church building and operates a bus called Grace to help the homeless in the parks and the city.

“So that makes me proud to be a 42-year-old in that position. God gave me the authority to stand up and help First Nations people,” she says.

“But it is often difficult to reach and encourage people to show the love of God, namely Jesus, and God is love.”

“It is knowing and learning to put on the Holy Spirit, full instruction to be the person Jesus wants you to be.”

She believes her mind has been opened and taken to another level in her walk with Jesus by taking a Foundation Studies course at Nungalinya College to improve her English literacy.

She says the four weeks she spent at Native Christian College was like living in the church. On the practical side, while studying, she learned how to send emails, use the Cambridge Dictionaries, and search Google for “the real answers.”

One of the students’ tasks was to describe how they imagined the Holy City, the New Jerusalem of Revelation.

It was easy for Melissa to imagine because of her idyllic childhood in her homeland of Black Hill, 30 minutes east of Ernabella.

“So I am connected to my country, and being here has opened my mind. So it’s like going to another level. That’s how I feel. I feel much stronger. And every drama I’ve done has been about the Holy Spirit. So it is knowing and learning to put on the Holy Spirit, full instruction to be the person Jesus wants you to be.

“I am very, very glad that by His Grace,e he has brought us here to learn. It’s like he brought me here to put binoculars on the heart. We have to say that to see Jesus.”

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