Chris and Christine Kidger - Strong Marriages: What a strong nation needs
Chris and Christine have been at CCK for 15 years now. Together they’re involved with the team responsible for marriage and counselling. They teach on the marriage course conducted at CCK. They do this because they believe that strong marriages help to produce strong families which in turn help to produce strong societies which in turn help to produce strong nations!
Chris is also partly retired as well as a practice manager with oversight of social workers involved in Child Protection.
Chris: I come from a non Christian background and had an agnostic step father. I was 10 when we moved to a small village in Essex and started going to Sunday School in a Baptist church there. My brother and I became Christians in our teen years. After school, I went off to London to do a hotel management course and spent the next 11 years in the hotel industry. In 1965, I was living in North London and going to a local church. One Sunday evening, I was at the door welcoming people (something I very rarely did!) and who should walk in but this attractive blonde who caught my eye!
Christine: I was brought up in a Christian home along with 4 brothers and 2 sisters. I became a follower of Jesus when I was 4. At 18, I began nursing training in the east end of London with a view to going to Africa. Chris and I met when I was 19 and we married in 1967!
Chris: What was funny was we took our honeymoon in Tunisia and in 1967 that was quite an adventure! We thought we would never travel again but God had different ideas! We were going to settle down and start a Christian guest house. But that all changed in 1970 when I was filled with the Holy Spirit. God led me to change careers and I switched to social work.
Christine: Whilst doing my midwifery training, a baby was born into difficult circumstances. That was pre-abortion time and people didn’t want babies. I discussed this with Chris and we prayed about it. I felt God saying don’t pray unless you want to be involved in the answer. To cut a long story short, Chris found him in a foster home and we adopted him when he was 2 years old.
Chris: Going through the adoption process led me to become a social worker. In 1973, God intervened again and we joined YWAM and packed up our belongings in a VW van and with our 4 children we went to Morocco to work with hippies and drug addicts who were on the drug trail.
In Morocco we had mice, rats, leeches, things stolen, sickness, make shift toilets but through it all we saw people come to know Jesus.
Christine: We moved quite a lot after that. In the first 15 years we made about 20 different moves! We had babies on the day we moved and had babies two days after we moved! It was all great!
But the last 27 years, we haven’t moved at all. The children were in their teens so we stayed in Brighton whilst they did their education.
In 1978, I woke up in the night and felt God say to write down what he showed me. It was about Nehemiah’s wall. Areas of the wall were different areas of church life that needed to be built. Bricks were individuals and families built together and the mortar that bound them together was love and trust. When Joel came with the vision of rebuilding walls, we were very excited because of the picture God had given me. We’ve had previous prophecies over our life about feeding God’s sheep which is about building the pastoral side of the church. So it all fits in to God’s plan for our lives.
Chris: In hindsight, we’ve seen God take care of us over the various seasons of our lives. We’ve had situations wherewe’ve had very little and situations where we’ve had a bit more. Finance, healing, personal family problems, stressful situations – through them all God has been faithful.
My experience is God takes you and puts you into circumstances that you wouldn’t have chosen, but He gives you strength to do so.
I love counselling and I think its one of the powerful ways in which God brings wholeness and healing to people to enable them to enjoy the plans and purposes he has for them.
Whatever our background, God uses us to serve his kingdom!
Christine: It says in the Bible that those ‘planted in the house of the Lord, they will bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green’. I find it interesting watching long distance runs in the Olympics. A whistle is blown at the last lap and trained runners will sprint as hard as they can for the last lap.
And it’s like God uses your training to help you run with all your might in the end even if it may not be as fast.
Chris: It’s a good thing we don’t know the end from the beginning or we might not have started!