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This has been the question on my mind for a while now. Why should we care about the poor, the powerless, the broken and needy? I mean, look at the world…you try to help one person and a million others starve, because the powers that should, in fact, take responsibility for their welfare, cannot do the job anymore (some refuse to do their jobs in lieu of lining their own pockets). There is just a handful of people in the world that really care about others and those will never be able to save the world.

Over the past few months you may have noticed my absence from social media or perhaps not. My tiny organization is but a tiny speck in the world of charity. The reason for my absence is simple, I’ve taken stock of my responsibilities. This meant re-thinking all my commitments and yes, the motivation behind this was definitely a feeling of utter helplessness and hopelessness. I wondered why I should work my fingers to the bone for something that will barely make a dent in poverty. The tiny contribution my work brings cannot possibly make a difference.

Everything in the world is downside-up and no one bothers with another’s needs anymore. People simply DON’T CARE. They have too many worries of their own and all the sadness, pain and suffering they see around them has become just ‘part of the scene’. So why should I care, why should I waste my time and energy on such a thankless and, looking at the state of things, endless and worthless cause.

I seriously considered throwing in the towel…..yes I did. And many things happened over the past six months that actually MADE me want to give up. BAD things, things that caused me to reconsider EVERYTHING. Thanklessness, for instance, and donors’ horrid comments, the constant influx of requests from all over the world for help and help and more help. The silence on the donations side. And that was just the work. In my personal life things are equally awry. It seemed that BAD things do not come in three’s, after all, they come in STRINGS of three’s! It became tiring to always try and be a good person, looking at the bright side, smiling against all odds. I was starting to question the wisdom of my work.

On the heels of that, of course, came the question: am I actually doing what I am supposed to do?? Was this what God WANTED me to do? Did I understand that long ago message right or did I TOTALLY miss the point?

I struggled with all these questions day and night (literally) and finally it dawned on my poor, weary brain, ask somebody the answer. In my case that somebody would be God. The One I always turned to in good AND bad times. He set me on this path, so I intended to get the answer there and then. Oh, I’ve pondered the purpose of my life and work often in the past and every time He gave me the same answer: be faithful and serve.

I’ve been stalling the ‘confrontation’ with my Creator since the weekend. So, yesterday I finally asked God the BIG QUESTION: “What is my life purpose?” and I dared (yes, DARED!) God to answer me.

He did SO answer me, but before I tell you what He ‘said’ (God speaks to me through His Word, I do NOT hear voices!), I decided to look back on my week of Bible Study and the scripture that was highlighted in each and, to my surprise, discovered that He has been answering me all week, even before I popped the question! Obviously God does know our hearts.

Look at this:

Saturday, 13 May: 2 Corinthians 12:9: “My grace is all you need, for my power is greatest when you are weak

Sunday, 14 May: Proverbs 31:30: “Charm is deceptive and beauty disappears, but a woman who honours the LORD should be praised.”

Monday, 15 May: Psalms 118:24: “This is the day of the LORD’s victory, let us be happy, let us celebrate!”

Tuesday, 16 May: 1 Corinthians 13:6-7: “Love is not happy with evil, but is happy with the truth. Love never gives up, and its faith, hope and patience never fail.”

Wednesday, 17 May: “Psalm 119:10: With all my heart I try to serve you; keep me from disobeying your commandments.”

Thursday, 18 May: “Proverbs 21:3: Do what is right and fair, that pleases the LORD more than bringing Him sacrifices.”

These are all the daily scriptures I receive from my Bible application, YouVersion, you can actually check them, I did not choose them randomly.

When I asked THE QUESTION yesterday, I did expect an answer, but not that it would come as soon as it did. For my general Bible reading I’ve selected the book of Habakkuk this week and poor Habakkuk was in a TERRIBLE position. His whole world was falling apart, because of those pesky Babylonians that infiltrated the country. I could identify with him. A lot of the things he went through and saw happening is, in fact, happening in our world and in our own country TODAY.  What he describes is exactly what I spoke of earlier in this post: the people were desperate, they were poor, sick, sad, afraid, hungry, etc and those of authority simply couldn’t care less, they just trampled over them all. He turned to the Lord and, much like me, and I suppose many of us in the world, turned to God and asked, why, why, why does He not stop all these horrors in the world? He could, if He wanted to. When will it all end?  God did answer Habakkuk and even told him to write down this message in stone:

Habakkuk 2:3-4: “Put it in writing, because it is not yet time for it to come true. But the time is coming quickly, and what I show you will come true. It may seem slow in the coming, but wait for it; it will certainly take place, and it will not be delayed. And this is the message: ‘Those who are evil will not survive, but those who are righteous will live because they are faithful to God.” [Good News Bible]

It became clear to  me that all my efforts, and those of others who help the needy, and desperate, will not be in vain. Righteousness will triumph, as long as we remain faithful.

This morning, this came to me (don’t ask me how), I just thought of the book and the verse for some reason:

Ephesians 2:10:God has made us what we are, and in our union with Christ Jesus he has created us for a life of good deeds, which he has already prepared for us to do.” [Good News Bible]

Believe it or not, I Googled it, just to see what will happen. By the miracle of the internet I discovered the image below.

My answer then, remains the same as always: STAY FAITHFUL AND SERVE. It wasn’t a mystery after all.

We are all in this world together and, by our own choice, we can either DO SOMETHING or DO NOTHING to make it a better place. We can also say that it is futile, the world is lost already and that poverty and suffering is just part of life. You can say you refuse to waste our own energy, time and resources on somebody else. It is YOUR CHOICE.

Let me tell you something, to DO NOTHING, makes you more part of the evil in the world than you care to know. Ignorance will not save you. On judgment day, will you tell God that you didn’t know? You can try, but I don’t think He’ll fall for it. As human beings we are compelled to help others, as Christians we are commanded to do so. Claiming you don’t believe means NOTHING to me. You are part of the human race, no matter what you believe. And it is your responsibility to the species to reach out to those in peril.

So, are you with me? Are we going to stand firm against poverty and suffering against all odds?  I’ve chosen to speak up, to DO SOMETHING. My work, however insignificant, WILL continue, I will keep on trying to save the world one person at a time and through it all I will stand strong in faith in the Lord, whom I serve.

You see, I’ve received my answer from God. I’ve always known I am to lead a life of service. ‘Stay faitful and serve’, that’s what I will keep on doing.

* Scripture quotes: YouVersion Bible App

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How very strange that I found this in my inbox on this, the last day of, what many would agree, has been a terrible year. 

This has been a tumultous year for me personally and I do hope and pray that 2017 will be a gentler year. It seems as if I’ve been running around like a wound-up toy, trying to make sense of life and not getting anywhere. 

One thing this verse tells me, though, is that I must battle forth, hold on to hope and onto God and all will be well.

That is also my prayer for all of you. I do hope that 2017 will see me keeping more up to date with posts so that we can visit often and share our thoughts.

Have a blessed new year’s eve, friends and followers. Stay safe, keep the faith and be filled with excitement at the dawn of a brand new year, always remembering that, if you believe, you will be carried through every storm, guided through every darkness and handed the gift of everlasting light in the end.

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I’ve been wondering if I should say something for the longest time. You may have noticed that I’ve been absent from blogging and social media in general for a long time. Thing is, I’ve been battling my own demons…..and I’ve not won yet. But hope prevails.

Now, tonight, in the shadow of a dark moon, I feel compelled to voice my opinion on a subject that has really gripped my fascination for the longest time. Ever since childhood I’ve been haunted by dreams about it, have I heard tall tales about it, things that frightened me so that I literally curled up in a bundle and covered my ears with my hands. The thing that frightened me, friends, was nothing other than the rapture and eventual return of Jesus Christ.

I remember those dark nights in church, the pastor’s booming voice, warning us of the terrors and the horrors that’s to come. I couldn’t understand that a kind God, a forgiving God, could be so cruel as to strike fear the hearts of the people His own Son saved.

These days we look at the world and wonder.

Tonight I read something about a cloud of depression hanging over the world…and it suddenly dawned on me; this is what is happening to us. We are being pulled into a dark pit of despair and then, at last, the release will come from above…but the release will be a terrible thing, as you who’ve seen the signs may know. Now, I’m not going to try and scare you, please, don’t ever think that! What I’m trying to tell is that you can still save yourself!

Yes, the horrors will come…..the San Andreas vault will finally give up the ghost and make California the next Atlantis, there will be volcano’s and floods…have been for years, in fact. There will be fire in the sky, there will be an upsurge of paranormal events, supernatural stuff that we normal people will refuse to accept or understand. I’m waiting for this, because I believe it is indeed upon us and I’m not saying this because I believe every computer animated cloud in the sky or weird trumpet sounds or warnings of a meteor strike on fake news bulletins…I don’t. I take that kind of information with an entire vault filled with salt…some of it may be authentic, but there are many charlatans out there that, for some sick reason, like to strike the fear of God in us. I’m also not saying that I’ve received a visitation and am about to bring a divine message from an angel or the holy Mother; that is NOT my intention with this. It is just a feeling I have…a feeling I’ve been having for the longest time and I will honestly be the first to admit that I may just be depressed or paranoid, whichever is your poison.

Tonight, friends, and few readers, I’m just reaching out to you in an honest way about this instinctive feeling. I feel compelled to share it, hence this crazy babbling (again…but you know me to be a babbler, anyway).

Now, everyone who has internet has seen the videos on YouTube, heard the trumpet sounds, saw the strange cloud formations, the lights falling from the sky. You’ve all heard about the warning of a devastating earthquake in the US and I’m sure you’ve seen the one of the strange clouds over Jerusalem. I don’t think we should concern ourselves with any of that. This feeling I have is stronger than any of those so-called signs and warnings may be. It’s been growing since childhood, as I mentioned already, and it is consuming me. When I read about the concerns of a stranger about the reign of depression across the world it got me thinking. And it spurred me into action…

The point is that my gut is telling me we are nearing the end of something, but also the beginning of something else. It is going to be big. I am not sure what it is, just as I’m not sure that the interpretations we have of Revelation, that of a human, what he thought he saw and have been believed by thousands, is fact…we cannot be sure. But, like I said to my husband this evening, I am NOT taking chances. It is my jobs to tell you that you have to be ready, get cracking friends and neighbors and turn your back on whatever you think is important in this world NOW and reach deep inside yourself, find your spirit and revive it, because the future is looking bleak for those of us who are unprepared. This battle is NOT going to be a physical one; it is already here, by the way, remember the talk about the cloud of depression? The world is being attacked by something we cannot kill with guns and knives and bombs….we are now quickly becoming our own enemies! I’ve suffered from depression for nearly 30 years, but never has it been so common, so devastating as it is now. People use drugs and alcohol to make them feel better, they use other vices; sex, murder, whatever floats them through their terrible days. I hear people saying ALL THE TIME that they cannot do this anymore. Life is becoming unbearable and NOT because of the economy or war or famine, or whatever…because they just feel so terribly down! Listen to this:

Luke 21:34-36

“But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap. For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”

Are you strong enough to fight against this terrible cloud descending upon us? Can you imagine how you would feel if all these predictions of earthquakes, floods, and other horrors come true? You will NOT be able to withstand the emotional strain! You will fall!! And THAT is exactly what the evil of the world wants us to do! The devil has been hiding in plain sight, right here, amongst us, watching and waiting like the rest of us. He has pounced and this is the result. Increase in alcoholism, drug abuse, child abuse, poverty, racism, hatred, criminal activity, murder, war, famine…the world is a mess and we are the victims of a spiritual battle which, by the way, we are LOOSING! It is time to wake up, people, NOT because of the YouTube channels that so busily testify of signs and warnings and images in the sky, NOT because of politicians who threaten economic downfall, NOT because of our own depression…that especially is NO EXCUSE!! We need to stand up for what our spirits believe NOW!! Take your stand, make your choice today, because I have a feeling our time is indeed short.

I’m speaking NOT as a prophet or a medium or any other spiritualistic, religious person; I’m speaking as myself, I’m sharing what I FEEL IN MY HEART…we need to take stock of our lives, we need to make peace, beg forgiveness and RETURN TO GOD TODAY!! Why this urgency? Truth is, there may not be a tomorrow…seriously.

What are you going to do? Make fun of me, perhaps? You are welcome. Criticize me…do that…I’m not a writer, nor a pastor, what do I know? I’m a silly housewife from a long-forgotten country at the far end of the darkest continent on the planet. My life means nothing…..so go ahead, make fun, have your laugh, just know this…I felt that I HAD to share this with you. You can do with it what you like.

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Just a final word, friends…don’t say you were NOT warned, stop making excuses…this is YOUR responsibility, YOUR decision and, ultimately, YOUR life (or death). Don’t be deceived….I hope to see you all soon.

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THE END

I sit by the river and see

Dark waters unfolding around around me

Wondering why it all went wrong

When in the distance I hear the sad old song

Of a nightingale in the whispering willows

And I wonder….here I sit on the banks of the river

The wind lifting the sweat from my brows

Feeling the cold fingers of autumn, the shiver

It has not been a wonderful life

The pain was immense, the quiet my strife

The whisper I hear in the darkness tonight

My end ever near now over the fight

I lift my gaze to the stars above

And wonder at them, those sparkles of love

Why was it never so easy for me

Good person I am, setting all free

Where’s the forgiveness, the caring and love

Why was there always so little for me, not a tear, not a smile

Never missed, always judged, always the pain

The scoldings I hear, know now all’s in vain

Now over the struggle, at last I lie down

Here by the river, with dew on my gown

I turn my face to the heavens above

And see a beam of light and….at last the love

THE END

IMAGE SOURCE:

Starry Night Over the Rhone (September 1888) by Vincent van Gogh

Dreaming of van Gogh on squarefocus.com

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Being desperate about life is something most of us have experienced at some point. While some of us may be lucky enough to perceive it as ‘just a bad day’, others may be living their lives in complete shadow. It is widely known that depression is one of the worst diseases of our time. A silent killer, sometimes referred to as ‘suicide’ or ‘heart attack’, but I’m not going to talk about depression from a counsellor’s point of view today. I’m just mentioning it so that you can understand the depth of despair some people face every day of their lives. I’m also mentioning it because I understand it, know it, yes, it is an old enemy. One I’ve been living with for 31 years. But that is ALSO not what I want to talk about, not really. Listen up, hear it comes….

The past few years have been particularly challenging. In 2009 I went off my meds and haven’t been using since. Needless to say, it’s been hard and I’ve had my ‘moments’ of deep, dark thoughts. Despite these ‘moments’, however, I’ve somehow managed to find the light every time. My secret? I’ve realized that, corny as it may sound, everything, even the bad in life, is part of a divine plan to build an authentic human being.

Let me tell you a story: in 2014 something really bad happened, something that someone did (or actually several people did several different things) to totally disrupt the peace and happiness in my life. I was angry, sad, confused and very depressed about what happened. I felt betrayed and couldn’t understand why such things can happen to someone who devoted a life to serve others. Why are people so mean? Why do bad things happen to good people? I’m sure you’ve asked that question yourself many times.

Despair

For a while I remained gloomy, filling my mind with thoughts of things that I don’t wish to repeat here and then, one evening, I read a piece in the Bible. It was from the book of Job 27:5-6: ‘Till I die I will not put away my integrity from me. To my righteousness I hold fast…’ I gave this some thought and realized that if Job could say something like that after all he’s been through, who am I to think differently? You see, things that happen to us and what others say about us, has a way of changing us, and usually not in a good way.

Let me explain it this way; I’ve always seen depression and depressive thoughts as a deep, dark well, a place in which other people, with their snide and hurtful remarks or events that bring sorrow and pain, can pull us. I say ‘pull’, because those people and events are already down there in the dark. We allow them, in our desperation, to keep us down there and to brainwash us in a way, making us like them. Filling our minds with dark thoughts and, when we try to get out of this well, they set traps like crumbling rocks or slippery walls, so that we keep on falling back down. They LOVE it when we’re down and when our thoughts are corrupted. We let it go, because we are just too glad to be accepted again, even if it is by the ‘bad’.  We lose our integrity, we betray ourselves and that is the mistake we make. We start believing that the ‘bad’ is right, that there really is no light and that we were wrong to think good things happen and that we can be who we are, trying to make the world a better place. We forget God’s promise in Matthew 28:20.

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After I read the piece in Job, I sat myself down. It was time for a me to myself peptalk. I looked at my life, who I am, what I am and suddenly it was clear….the important thing was not what others have to say about me or what happened to me, the important thing was that I’ve survived and learned something from every single experience I’ve ever had. This depression, this darkness was changing me into something I did not want to be; I was becoming like the darkness itself! I was losing my integrity, betraying myself and the purpose of my life. In Jeremiah God says that He has a plan for each one of us, and it is not a plan that involves all this evil, this ‘bad’.  (Remember the image at the beginning of this post?) We forget, also that we do not have to fight alone.

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We lose ourselves trying to figure out ways of surviving life, we conform to the masses and to the demands of those who, in fact, hate us. Instead we should remember that everything really happens for a reason. Maybe not the reason we thought, but a reason nonetheless and that we were made in a certain way, with a certain purpose and our personality, our souls and our hearts tell us exactly what we should be. My heart has always been telling me to be compassionate, to look out for those who cannot stand up for themselves, to not hold a grudge, to hold on to my faith. How can I then allow depression, caused by events out of my control, to change the fundamental ‘me’? Yesterday my husband sent me the meme below and it really made me think about all these things again, because I am going through another dark battle now.

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We cannot allow evil to change us into something that goes against everything we stand for. Over the past few weeks I’ve been reading a lot about prophecies and the end of days and it concerns me that we’ve done so much to ‘belong’ in the dark world, yet we’ve done nothing to return to the light in which we were born. Do we not realize that the time is near for Jesus to return? Do we not understand that it can happen at any moment? Staying true to the person that God wants you to be, the person He created, must be the most important thing in our lives. All the other stuff, the hurtful words, the catastrophic events, the sorrow and pain mean NOTHING when we remain on the path planned for us. Staying true to the righteous me would mean that, come the rapture, I will be taken and not left behind. I will be ready.

Friends, don’t be fooled by those against you or the events that seem to hijack you at every turn. Remain loyal to yourself, to the creature that God made.  Allow yourself to have moments of depression if you have to, but never lose sight of the light. Don’t let the darkness change you. Listen to your inner voice, believe in yourself and in your purpose and KNOW, always know, that God is by your side wherever you go, in whatever you do, until the end of time.

IMAGE SOURCES:

Exodus 14:14 –  Timewarp Wife. 2013. [Date of Access:] 5 April 2016

Jeremiah 29:11Joe Quatrone jr.  2012.  [Date of Access:] 5 April 2016

Matthew 28:20Kagesa Files.  2012.   [Date of Access:] 5 April 2016.

Woman in DespairMy Carpal Tunnel.  2012.  [Date of Access:] 5 April 2016

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via Channel SHK on YouTube

If you survived the ’80’s in a swoon about some sweet-lookin’ guy or gal, then you’ll remember this one.

Strange, isn’t it, that when one hears a tune, you can immediately remember a particular, associated moment (let’s, for the sake of the new generation, call it a hashtag-moment). What do you remember when you hear songs/tunes like these?

Yesterday my hubby of nearly 28 years listened to this (oh, he’s having a major flashback YEAR…playing old a-tracks of Heintje Simmons’s songs of all things!) and, BOY, did it bring back a flood of memories. Trips in his old Alfa GTV; said trips to Milky Cove (the local ice cream parlor), church meetings, Sunnypark Shopping Mall (when it was still THE hangout of the young and lively in Pretoria)….good times.

It is really strange the images that something as simple as a song can bring back to life for a person. The power of song, the power of words, of music….amazing.

Again I ask: what do you remember?

Listening to Elvis Presley, perhaps, or Johnny Cash? I do….hideous music, said my Mom, roaring through the speakers in my brother’s room. Sister listening to the Pretenders and  the Beach Boys and (very quietly) to the Beatles. That was back in the late 1960’s, early 1970’s. And all those ‘Vietnam-songs’! Remember, ‘Green Beret’? Speaking of green…who remembers ‘Green, green grass of home’, that old Tom Jones classic? Of course Engelbert Humperdinck needs a mention; one of sister’s favorites. Him with his ‘Spanish Eyes’ and singing sweet ‘Release Me’-songs.

Later came ABBA and the Bee Gee’s, Staying Alive and saying Thank You For The Music. Personally I adored Boney M, who warned that we Don’t Kill The World and then cried by the Rivers Of Babylon, before offering their Christmas Album and Mary’s Boy Child to a world that still finds it glorious after all these years. Then, forever the Dancing Queen (not, I can’t even two-step)  I had to hang up my Blue Suede Shoes when the Soft Shoes crashed on the charts in South Africa (who remembers them?),  but then I tried to reach for the Man in the Moon with Ballyhoo, while Alphaville encourage me to stay Forever Young. I shook it up with my favorite of all time: Freddy Mercury, the Great Pretender himself and Queen. Yes, I loved the Bohemian Rhapsody and even when I rode my bicycle I felt that they kept their promise: We Will Rock You. That was not all, though….

Inbetween ruled my love for classical music: Verdi’s Aida and Hebrew Slave Choir from Nabucco – it irritated Mom endlessly. Trumpet Voluntary in D, and….oh, bliss, Handel’s Messiah. Mozart, Chopin, Beethoven, Vivaldi and Also Sprach Zarathustra…people must have thought I was totally nuts to love ALL these tunes, and then some. However, SHOCKER, …..

I was raised in one of those, how did Stephen King put it in ‘The Green Mile’? Aaah, yes…one of those ‘praise Jesus, the Lord is mighty’- churches. Singing was our way of, not only passing the time in church, it was (and is) our way of bringing humble praise to the one God. In choir practice we sang one that I loved in particular: ‘King of my life I crown Thee now, Thine shall the glory be, Lest I forget Gethsemane, lead me to Calvary…’ Man, I’ll NEVER forget that! Back then, as it is now, I found solace in Don Francisco who tought me that I Gotta Tell Somebody that Jesus, He’s Alive and the lovely words of Jimmy Swaggart as he prayed to let His Living Water Flow Over My Soul. Particular sad memory with that one….it played as we drove home after the funeral of someone whose passing left a hole in my heart forever.

So, as you can see, my life-story in song….every sound a memory, sharp and clear as a bell. How wonderful it is.

Now, friends, what songs can YOU remember? Songs that unlock that mystical time-capsule of your memory? Which is YOUR ‘hashtag-moment’?

#MemoryMusic proves that #MusicLives4Ever

 

 

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Tony ‏yahwehisjesus

Interestingly enough, soon after I’ve received the above image via Twitter (@yahwehisjesus), someone asked me why I keep writing these ‘messages’ on my blog (meaning:  String Of Pearls, one of my other WordPress blogs). I was a bit taken aback, as I thought this person should understand my reasons….I write it, not because I want something to keep me occupied, I write it because I’m compelled to. This person insisted that I’m wasting my time and added that it would be time better spent if I’d rather watch a television programme. I was astonished! And hurt. Why do people always question it when you are trying to do something good? Is it perhaps Satan, working through them, to try and keep you from doing what you are supposed to do? A definite YES, I think, is the answer.

Just yesterday I saw someone reaching out to people on Facebook to help a family in a drought stricken town somewhere in South Africa.  The family had absolutely NOTHING; no food for their babies, no diapers, no milk, no proper home or furniture, no source of income. You wouldn’t believe the comments I read. Can’t people just keep quiet if they have nothing good to add? Why do they have to embarrass themselves like that; pointing fingers, judging the people that are just trying to help? What happened to Christian charity? What happened to the fruits of the Spirit? It reminded me of what someone once asked me when I told them I support charity organizations and projects across South Africa. This person asked: ‘Yes, but are the donations going to the RIGHT people?’ Can someone please define ‘right people’? Poverty doesn’t discriminate, so why should we? (I nearly kicked myself, because I only thought of the proper reply after the fact: I should have asked him: So, what do YOU plan to do about the ‘right people’?) I was just so astonished that, despite our claim to Christian living, we still find it hard to accept that we are all one in the Spirit, one Body.

This brings me back to my complainant, thoughtlessly sharing his opinion and by that accusing me of wasting time by posting religious messages on my blog, and to try and do it on a daily basis. I’m not trying to defend myself here, please understand. I’m sure there are many more important (to the world anyway) things that I can be doing instead. Strange then that I saw this ‘prophecy’ on Twitter: “I want healing in My Body, and I want My Body to prosper again….you are just beginning to receive”.

How can one ignore this? I contemplated the entire message carefully, not wanting to read into it something that I should rather not. You see, I know I’ve been called to bring forth the message and have, in fact, resisted it for the longest time. Why did I resist you may ask.  Well, the story of my life is that I’ve always felt unworthy. So how on earth could God appoint ME, as one of His messengers? It was simply unbelievable. I’m perhaps the biggest sinner of all (okay, I don’t kill people or hurt small animals, but still – I’m far from the perfect example of what a Christian should be).  I’m nothing, a nobody, until I realized it is not about me or what I’ve achieved in life. The point is to get the Word out, NOT to tell the world about my little ol’ life! It’s NOT about the messenger, it is about the MESSAGE!

This realization forced me to sit down and take stock of my life (a giggle, given the fact that I’m nearly half a century old!  Memory’s not all that good anymore!). Ever since I can remember I thought nothing of myself. I’ve never been important or particularly special…I’ve been just a regular Joe (or Joey). People never looked twice at me; I lived a non-descript life, in a non-descript house, with a non-descript family. In school, when asked who was the most likely to succeed, I didn’t even get a mention….no-one knew who the hell I was! Although I have many interests, I’m not really good at anything. I’m one of those dream big, achieve little, people. Please, I’m not trying to get any sympathy and I’m NOT feeling sorry for myself. Despite being a nothing, THINGS DID HAPPEN to me along the way. Bad things, mostly, but some good things too…the bad things got REALLY bad at times and I often screamed and shouted in anger at God for allowing such a thing to happen. What have I ever done to You, God? I’d stomp away from the face of God, angry and confused. Sometimes I stayed away from Him for months, but I always returned; sneaking back, shamefaced and totally embarrassed when I saw that even that bad thing had purpose. This is the lesson I learned; the road we travel in life is never perfect; it goes up steep cliffs, where we often slip back a few paces, sometimes we travel onward, calm and sure, until the road drops away into a sinkhole right in front of us; sometimes the road takes us into dark forests filled with strange and dangerous animals, we get lost in the dark. Life is NEVER perfect (not even for the pretty, rich, famous, successful kids that went to school with me), life is our lesson and it is rarely the things that happen to us that determine our path, it is the way we deal with it. Would you try to climb back up the cliff after you’ve slipped down a bit, or would you let go and just drop to the bottom?

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It was a strange experience….looking back over a life lived and SEEING it clearly for the first time. Would I change any of it? Would I still be the same person I am today without any of those experiences? I don’t think so….God has brought me to this point in my life and He prepared me for something remarkable. I am to tell the world about His love. I should NOT forget the lessons I learnt, no, but I must use it as testimony of His kindness and share it to glorify His Name. However, my story is of less importance….I was NEVER important, because I am NOT SUPPOSED TO BE important. God and HIS MESSAGE ARE IMPORTANT. Nothing else matters.

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I read about Jeremiah who was so unhappy that God ‘forgot’ to help him. He asked  God why and God didn’t even answer the question….God just said: return to me. Jeremiah 15: 18-19: “Why do I keep on suffering? Why are my wounds incurable? Why won’t they heal? Do you intend to disappoint me like a stream that goes dry in the summer?’ To this the LORD replied, ‘If you return, I will take you back, and you will be my servant again. If instead of talking nonsense you proclaim a worthwhile message, you will be my prophet again. The people will come back to you, and you will not need to go to them.”[1]

So, I know many people will think I’m all set for the men in the white coats, ready to be committed, but here is the truth: whether you lived a wonderfully blessed life, whether you became wealthy beyond your own expectations, whether you are the most beautiful and successful person on earth or whether you are a lonely soul, never acknowledged, recognized or given an opportunity to shine…IT DOESN’T MATTER. God has PURPOSE for you! And all these things YOU have or have not achieved simply don’t count. It’s nothing….all that matter is the Good News, the Word of God and the Christian’s obligation to see that it is told to everyone.

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1 Corinthians 9:16-17: “I have no right to boast just because I preach the gospel. After all, I am under orders to do so. And how terrible it would be for me if I did not preach the gospel! If I did my work as a matter of free choice, then I could expect to be paid; but I do it as a matter of duty, because God has entrusted me with this task.” [1]

2 Corinthians 4:1-5: “God in his mercy has given us this work to do, and so we are not discouraged. We put aside all secret and shameful deeds; we do not act with deceit, nor do we falsify the word of God. In the full light of truth we live in God’s sight and try to commend ourselves to everyone’s good conscience. For if the gospel we preach is hidden, it is hidden only from those who are being lost. They do not believe, because their minds have been kept in the dark by the evil god of this world. He keeps them from seeing the light shining on them, the light that comes for the Good News about th glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God. For it is not ourselves that we preach; we preach Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake, “[1]

If anyone doubts that this purpose is worthy, he/she is still thinking with the selfish mind of the world and need to turn their faces to the heavens, so that the light of God Himself can bring wisdom of all ages.

SOURCES:

  1. 2001. Good News Bible: Today’s English Version.  Cape Town: Bible Society of South Africa.

IMAGE SOURCES:

  1. BRADLEY D. FOSTER QUOTE. Via
  2. GOING FORWARD REJOICING. Via Blogspot.
  3. IT’S ALL ABOUT YOU JESUS QUOTE. Via Flywheel.
  4. PETE WILSON QUOTE. Via HopeForTheWearyMom.
  5. PROPHETIC WORD. Via Tony @yahwehisjesus
  6. TERESA S. TAYLOR QUOTE. Via Pixteller.

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