Our Stories: Gwen Trussler

trussler-photo
There’s a beautiful new voice in our midst. Gwen Trussler, along with her husband Tim and daughter Olivia, have been attending FPC since July 2015, and you may have heard Gwen singing from the chancel. She is a classically trained performer, and she sings with joy and confidence … now. But her path as a singer once led through dark testing.
 
Gwen grew up in a Christian family, knowing the love of God. Her musical talent was apparent early on. Others encouraged her to study music, and she earned a master’s degree in vocal performance. Singing felt natural and right. In young adulthood her life filled up with performance opportunities.
 
Then something changed. She didn’t know it at the time, but a medical condition had altered her voice. The singing that had been her joy and her identity was now nerve-wracking and impossibly difficult. She quit.
 
Yet God was calling her back to singing. Like the disciples who had fished all night and caught nothing, Gwen said, “Lord, I don’t see how that will work, but since You told me to …” She stepped out in faith and retrained. Working with the change in her voice, she gradually faced auditions again, learning to trust that disappointment was not the end and especially learning to trust God’s messages of hope. Gwen memorized Scripture verses about God’s love and the strength we have in Him. That is what enabled her to work through the discouragement and frustration.
 
“If we allow Him to move into those places that are dark, He will move in with His light,” Gwen says. As He does it, we are blessed, and so are others.
 
As we know, she is singing again and doing it beautifully. In the years since that dark time, Gwen has used her musical gifts in many venues: church, opera, musical theater. She also works as an MRI technician and gives of herself in the medical community. She and Tim enjoy spending time with their young daughter Olivia and with their grown daughter, Sydney, who lives in Portland. Here at FPC, Gwen participates in Sunday school, women’s Bible study and the church prayer team.
 
As she looks back over her journey, she says, “You learn to trust that God has your back. And He has a plan.”