Posts Tagged With: kids

Looking after Our Souls

644722_4478619680481_1720799057_nMy friend Riamien – what a fantastic friend. She truly was an inspiration to all of us and she will not be forgotten. My beautiful friend who struggled with lung cancer, passed away yesterday, after suffering and being in extreme pain these past few weeks, and then still picking up an infection. Luckily, Jesus really loves us, He comforts us and makes things okay when they seem not to be.

He blessed me with a beautiful friendship with her. I only got to know her after she was diagnosed but man, she had such a beautiful soul. Even in her darkest of hours, when she was in extreme pain and we spoke, even then, although she was struggling, there was so much light and love that came from her.

Yesterday, my parents left after a weekend of having them here in the city. It really was good to see them as well as all the other family. I got to see my mom’s aunt turn 70. I played with the most amazing young kids. I ate and laughed with family. I was able to be kept updated of a friend’s wedding far away by two other very good friends. And yesterday, after spending a weekend with family, I got to spend most of my day and evening last night, with a very close spiritual brother whom I talked about earlier. Jean, who returned from Thailand. His brother, also joined us at the driving range later the afternoon. I was very blessed by these two. Especially, when the news came through of my cherished friend’s death. At that time, we had stopped to get take-away coffee and had headed to our university sport’s fields, to drink our coffee and watch God make thunder and lightning and bring on the rain.

Hearing the news and having been with such good people, God really took care of my soul. He also speaks to me when there is wind and thunder and rain and that was all around last night. So between that and friends, I was being smothered in God’s love and comforted by Him and His grace. After the crying, we sat and watched more of the thunder & lightning, as well as listened to some beautiful songs, one being “Let it Rain”. Through the wind I could feel His love wrap itself around me, and while Jean prayed before we got in the car…for Angels to come, I was able to see angels come. God was there and it was amazing. Yesterday was a beautiful day, despite the loss of my friend. Although I experienced outrage and anger and disappointment towards God, despite all that, Jesus still came & covered me with grace and comfort and love, He overwhelmed me with it and still told me how worthy I am. He truly is a loving Father and He truly blessed me with this weekend, with all that happened and all the people He put there. So thanks to those beautiful people too. God really is taking care of my soul.

And as God takes care of my soul, I pray He will take care of all my precious family and friend’s souls as well as my dear friend’s family in this time.

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Indescribable Affirmation

September comes to a close and I thought I would share with you a last few thoughts. September is International Childhood Cancer Month which is coming to an end but in these past few weeks God has really put them on my heart and made it clear that is where He wants me to be. Helping, loving and serving them, the kids and their families.

2 days ago, my second day of Dollar a Day was drawing to a close, and I still had to attend the Passion Conference in Pretoria at 7pm. By that time I was hungry and tired, not at all in the mood anymore. But as Chris Tomlin started to play God brought up the story in my head, that I had heard when I was still in high school, of a similar artist, Jeremy Camp who had married his first wife Melissa while she had cancer and passed away a few months after. That thought quickly passed, while we were worshiping I experienced a sense of overwhelming love and joy. While busy with worship, an intense and OVERWHELMING peace came over me, rushing through my veins as if someone had just put me on a drip of peace, I could feel the tingle of God’s peace running through my veins spreading to every part of my body. The peace came over me as I looked up to the sky at the stars which had felt so far away. As we sang the chorus of INDESCRIBABLE, “Indescribable, uncontainable, You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name, You are amazing God, All powerful, untameable, Awestruck we fall to our knees as we humbly proclaim, You are amazing God, You are amazing God..” I looked up at the stars again and suddenly the felt close enough to touch…. They were so extremely bright and so close. As I leaned closer, looking and wanting to touch them, each one seemed to reveal a face of a child inside that light…it felt like each star was a different child that Jesus so dearly loves and knows by the name, He was able to name each one I touched. While this was happening, I could feel my body and voice praising God at the top of my lungs, yet everyone’s singing and joy felt like background music while this was happening.

After that, Louie Giglio gave a great message from God, while he was doing that, I was sitting on a blanket next to Marine and Gerhard listening to Louie Giglio, but it felt as if I was sitting on a cloud next to God and between His stars, listening to this message. It really felt like God was enjoying watching this and I was just in awe, as God kept reassuring me through Louie Giglio’s message that He wants me to work with these kids at CANSA TLC. I could feel God smiling  next to me pointing to Louie Giglio as if to say, “See? I hope you’re listening. See? Uh-huh. Hmm. See? You can do it.  See? You can do what I need you to do. You see? Don’t doubt. I’ve called you by name, to carry My Name. Just like each of these stars have names and a purpose, so do you.” It kept going on, affirmation after affirmation. He just kept assuring me of what He wants me to do, but so gently, lovingly and with such excitement. As if He knows it is where I need to go to experience some challenges and growth while serving Him and lifting up His Holy Name.  He kept assuring me that if He is for me then nothing could stand against me, like He’s got this – I’ve just got to go do as He says and He’ll take care of the rest. The rest of the night I praised Him and worshiped, with renewed energy and INDESCRIBABLE in my heart the next two days. I felt like I was floating on that same cloud the rest of Wednesday night and Thursday morning when I woke up I still felt in a daze, I was quiet and just left in awe, unable to say much and feeling irritated when people spoke to me as I couldn’t get out of the daze. I felt like I was drunk on the Holy Spirit but it was amazing. Since then though, I have felt at such peace about working with kids who have Cancer. I even shared the feeling of really wanting to work with the kids, with my sister and even she said she thinks I should do it and that I would enjoy it and really serve well. For her to have said that, was even more confirmation, as my sister is truly honest about what she thinks and knows me so well, I trust and believe in her opinion, so that meant so much to me.

So I feel confident and assured that this is what I should do for God, as He answered every question and doubt in me with an affirmation and word of belief in me. It really is the greatest feeling that words can hardly get close to describing. It truly is INDESCRIBABLE.

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These were also a few words & scriptures from God that were shared with me as I prayed on Thursday:

Psalm 62v1 – Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from Him.

Deuteronomy 16v15 – For seven days celebrate the festival to the Lord your God at the place the Lord will choose. For the Lord your God will bless you in all your harvest and in all the work of your hands, and your joy will be complete.

Exodus 33v14 – The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

1 Peter 5v7 – Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

Matthew 6v8 – Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.

Psalm 23v1 – The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not be in want.

John 14v27 – Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Psalm 31v15 – My times are in Your Hands; deliver me from my enemies and from those who pursue me.

Psalm 33v11 – But the plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of His heart through all generations.

Proverbs 2v6 – For the Lord gives wisdom, and from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.

Deuteronomy 2v29 – But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find Him if you look for Him with all your heart and with all your soul.

Psalm 27v1 – The Lord is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?

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CANSA TLC training

I never liked blood or in any sense wanted to become a doctor. Maybe nursing but my fear of blood and needles has just been to intense. In that sense, I think I can often relate to kids because of those fears. At a very young age I experienced having a lumber punch, and have had quite a few since then. For kids, this can be an extremely traumatic experience, especially being held down so that they can do this.

Recently, as many would know, I have had to experience and come into contact with many people having cancer. Riamien, who has finished Chemo, Ben and Wihann, as well as Bernhard’s dad. I’ve seen some come through it but also lost quite a few to cancer. But of late, after visiting Bernhard’s dad, I have experienced a great sense of compassion for people with cancer. I’ve experienced God’s feelings towards these people, or at least a sense of it, and especially that I really want to work with the kids living with cancer. God has always put it on my heart to work with kids and their families but never did I know when and where. These past two days, I was given the opportunity to visit CANSA TLC – Nicus Lodge near Steve Biko, where I got to go inside and see what some of it looks like and then go for training on how to work with Cancer patients and their families. During as well as after hearing all the stories and how you work with them and what they go through I have really felt this is what I would like to do part time and potentially full time.

After hearing what they go through, especially the kids, I could relate in the sense of needles, lumbar punches, being sick and scared and facing possible death. But also this week we have been doing Dollar a Day, and being so low on energy, not being able to concentrate and process things, not being able to remember things and being extremely emotional and tired physically and emotionally has made me so much more aware of what Cancer patients go through. They obviously experience it a lot more and more intensely, but with Chemo and treatments this is how they end up feeling. It really has given me a new understanding for those who live in Africa, on the street but also for these Cancer patients and what their families also have to deal with and is not easy. Going through these things and being up and down is really hard. I have become a lot more sensitive to these things the last couple of weeks, as well as our words and actions towards people.

So, I am extremely excited to work with the kids at CANSA TLC soon if possible. The training was so helpful and I would recommend it for everyone, pastors and their congregations, schools, faculties at University, as well as people who have or come into contact with Cancer or any other terminal illness. It gives you great understanding and can be extremely useful.

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A Generation Of Example

For many years the youth (children and young adolescents) have not been heard and have felt less worthy. They weren’t always allowed to be used for Christ in the Church and have not always been allowed to partake in different ceremonies, often just seen as pew fillers.* We see the same thing in many cultures and just in general in society today. We see it in households and many different areas. We see them being raped, abused, molested, used as child soldiers, sex slaves, as cheap labour, guinea pigs in the educational system and the list goes on.

What we need to realize is that children and young adolescents are more than just that. They were created by God and are used by God just as much as any adult and sometimes even more. In Biblical times they were often used to teach adults lessons and were often used as examples in the community. We can see that with David and Goliath (1 Samuel chapter 17). He was a child when He stood up against Goliath and later became a king; he made mistakes yet what often used by God.  We see it when Isaac was used by God to test Abraham’s love for God (Genesis chapter 22) Abraham was asked to kill his one and only son Isaac on an alter, if Abraham really loved God. Because he was obedient to the Father, Isaac was spared. We see it in the story where Jesus feeds five thousand (Matthew chapter 14, verses 13-21) with the fish and loaves, which a little boy offered up. There are numerous other times in the Bible as well. We even see it when Jesus and the children; He sits them on His lap and blesses them (Matthew chapter 19, verses 13-14). To the disciples the children seemed insignificant and they had rebuked them but to Jesus they were extremely important. God even says that it is far better to go die in the depths of the oceans than to make a child stumble (Matthew chapter 18, verse 6). The importance of the youth is immense and it is something we need to take into consideration in all we do.

Children and the youth are important and they are and should be examples to adults and society. They should not be looked down upon and can be used for great things. They should not be seen as objects in society or in the Church. Many times they are examples of Christ and of the faith we should have. They should be allowed to preach, teach and partake in any other ministry. They should be given more opportunities, they should be heard, they should be seen, they should be allowed the same opportunities we are and shouldn’t be looked down on or frowned upon. They should be allowed to dream and explore Christianity. Their capabilities shouldn’t be doubted because often they are more aware of things we are too blind to see and they are more sensitive to what is going on around them than we give them credit for.

To have children part of our ministries, communities and just society in general should be a privilege, honour and advantage protected and recognised by us not hidden and zipped shut. So let us hear them, allow them equal opportunity and recognise their importance and great significance in our everyday life.

*This is not the case in all churches, please do not misunderstand, but in many churches this is a very true reality; which may not always be their intention but does happen as they start to preach to the adults who pay their salaries and forget about the children.

1 Timothy 4v12-16: 

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching. Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you.

Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.

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Children Of Promise

All of us are loved by God the same and it does not matter where we come from or from what background we come. We should not be defined by our parents, our financial status, what degree we have, whether we are literate or not, country or bloodline, language or culture. We are all made by the same God and He loves no one more than the other or less than the other.

We are all children made by Him and every person out there should know they are. Not one child or grown up should feel alienated and if they do they need Christ in their life that He can show them love and their worth.

Many of us come from backgrounds or situations where we have been in trouble or been hurt. Many of us have felt judged at one or another point in our lives and because of that we should not judge one another. Because of that there is no need to feel alienated as we all have that in common. All of have felt like we have disappointed someone or disappointed many or even just ourselves. All of us have felt like we have no voice, that we are not heard or have not been seen. All of us have felt left out, insecure, less worthy, insignificant, unnoticed. Now it is time to realize that we aren’t any of these things and that God sees, He hears, He feels. He does not judge -, alienate -, hurt -, disappoint -, hate -, kill -, scorn – or beat you. God is a God of love and all good comes from Him.

God loves us as His own, He is our creator and He has given us so many promises, promises that He does not break. He promises that through Him we become Children of Promise and that there is so much more to us than meets the eye. He looks past our parents, our financial status, what degree we have, whether we are literate or not, country or bloodline, language or culture – and sees the promises that lie within each of us. The promises of being more than ordinary, more than worthy, more than beautiful, more than capable, more than clean, more than pure, more than unique, more than righteous, more than healed, more than loved, more than humble, more than an heir, more than sons and daughters, more than hopeful, more than dreamt of, more than reached, more than living, more than passionate, more than chosen, more than free and the list can go on. But He sees us as more!!!

He sees us as full of potential, full of promise. He sees us as Children of Promise. So if He sees this, why don’t we? And if we do we need to get out there and help those (especially children and young adolescents) who don’t see themselves as Children of Promise, realize what they are and become exactly that.

Galatians 4v28: Now you, brothers, like Isaac, are children of promise.

For further thought and reading refer to Galatians 4v21-31

 

 

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MeSsy Fun Painting

I have just the coolest weekend coming up!!!

The diggs I’m living in is kinda more than just a diggs. We have two. One is just filled with guys & then our diggs is filled with guys and girls. We are a whole bunch of Christians from different backgrounds living together. Some work but we’re mostly students, all studying different things. We do projects together & Bible study & a whole lot of stuff. It’s so hard to explain & me trying to just doesn’t do it any justice. But we are trying to live simplicity in the context of need. If you want to know more go to http://www.intentionalliving.co.za

So anyway, at varsity as of Sunday the 29th July – Tuks Missions is having their annual Missions Week. They raise funds during the year up until this huge event in which they have worship, speakers, stalls & a whole lot more each evening in order to educate people on campus about Missions. It really is a super cool event. So every night there will be stalls & the event goes on until Thursday, 2nd August. Our diggs is having a stall of course & as the theme is footprints for the event this year I thought I’d get our stall a table cloth with footprints on it.

But, thinking about it, I want to use the huge piece of cloth for something more. I was just thinking about how footprints has to do with being followers of Jesus but also being His hands & feet & the generation to leave footprints of God’s love in this world. And when we talk about followers, feet, footprints & generations – I usually think KIDS!!! So I decided I need a new project, since I only have a few classes a day & have been feeling bored. It may be something fun but may be something of impact. Tomorrow morning I get to go to a school to spend some time with awesome little kids from the ages 3-6 yrs & if I’m lucky, the rest of the school will join in & paint too. I will have a 2m x 3m white cloth & kids with paint on their feet are gonna run all over it! So I have no clue where this little project of mine may lead & I’m trusting God to do something with it! I will use the cloth on Sunday evening at Missions Week but also later on as I get more ideas on this fun little project.

And then, tomorrow evening I’ll be spending it with Chris & Mona at their house warming! So it is going to be a fun, exciting & messy kick start to one awesome weekend!!!

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