Name: Glen Cooke
Occupation: Elder, Artist
Place of Residence: Wiluna, WA
Tribe/Language: Ngaanyatjarra people, Central Desert Region
A wanderer at heart, Glen Cooke first encountered God in 2012 while camping on the outskirts of Laverton in Western Australia.
“I was doing this walk one morning and I felt this breeze just come over me. This breeze was something very different. It had the feel of electricity that just went through my body. I trembled and I knelt down on my knees. I asked the Lord to come into my life. That’s where I received Jesus Christ as my personal Saviour…on the road,” said Glen.
A respected Indigenous elder and artist, Glen is married with 6 children and 7 grandchildren. He was born at Warburton Ranges; an Indigenous community in Western Australia, just south of the Gibson Desert. Glen’s ancestors were traditionally nomadic people until the settlement was established in 1934 under the auspices of the United Aborigines Mission (UAM). It was named after explorer Peter Warburton, the first European to cross the Great Sandy Desert.
“I travel alone, and when I’m out in the bush I feel the presence of Jesus. He’s there, sitting with me, by my side, sharing the campfire. Jesus is someone who’s more than a friend. He’s more than a man who will sit with you in a pub and talk to you. Jesus is an everlasting friend. He is your shadow. He is someone who is always walking with you.”
A talented artist since childhood, Glen’s work consists of self-portraits, portraits and landscapes. “I paint and something just comes out,” he said. “Every time I paint, God is with me.”
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