Francois du Toit
“Stormproof living” engages the Rock of AGES in such a way that any size onslaught is neutralized.
What does it mean to build your house upon the rock?
Dig deep – gaze intently into the mirror likeness of the face of your birth!
“Son of man, I say, you are Rock; you’re a chip of the old block – the son of man is the son of God!”
Living your life from who you are in Christ beats living your life from who you are in Adam by far! Plus it is stormproof!
Luke 6:47 Let me illustrate what it is like for any individual who follows me, hears my words and fully engages the effect of the message.
Luke 6:48 It is like building a storm-proof house. So, this person dug beyond the surface layers, and continued to excavate until solid rock was found. And the foundation of the house was laid upon that rock. Then, one-day, there was a massive cloudburst; the water began to rise and a river came down in flood until it burst its banks in a torrent and broke against the house with full force. Yet, its intensity did not even shake the structure. The secret is, that this house shares the same strength of the rock, which makes it equally storm-proof.
Luke 6:49 But, someone who only hears my words casually, without engaging it’s message, is like a person who builds a house on the surface, without any foundation; then, when the storm struck, and the river burst its banks, the house was swept along!
To sit in the same audience with an indifferent attitude, is such a great loss!
(It is not the size of the storm, but the connection with the rock that makes all the difference. It is about engaging a rock-solid foundation.
“When I was asked to write about COVID-19 for the Touching Africa Gazette, I thought it would be easy.
As the hours and days went by, I realized that the opposite was true.
I realized that COVID-19 cuts deep, that nothing is easy, and I am standing in front of a choice.
Do I write from my head or my heart?
I decided to write from my heart…
My first reaction after the lockdown announcement, was quite true to my personality. I decided that I would use the time to the best of my ability. I would spend time with God and give myself the opportunity to really study the Word of God. I would take time to finish a few projects, sorting out all my cupboards, photos and complete all my assignments for a course I am doing in Servant Leadership.
However, Covid-19 and the hard reality exploded as I was chosen to be on the JB Marks Command Council. Nothing could prepare me for the process that unfolded in front of me. I
t was surreal and we were totally unprepared and ignorant as to what this state of disaster would entail.”
“We are living in an extremely profound time in history – “WORLD WAR III”, some voices shout around us!
We are surrounded by a very confused world, with muddled communication and voices of fear all around and on social media. Everybody realises that something is wrong, but nobody knows exactly what is going on. There are negative conversations everywhere, ongoing emphasis of all the weak points in government, the danger of Covid-19… like pigs continuously rolling in the mud. In this global disastrous situation, it is time to turn to the LORD for wisdom and clear understanding!
The LORD showed me the picture of a major abyss in the earth, a deep valley disrupting the plains of normal life. A mere few meters from one side to the other, but impossible to cross without support. There are two solid steel tracks bridging the deep dark opening and a vehicle is slowly crossing from the one side to the other. On the other side, there is a man carefully instructing the driver to keep on track in crossing the valley. For the driver and the vehicle, there is no reason to fear the deep dark valley. In fact, while staying on the track, there is absolutely no risk and no influence from the abyss on the car at all! Fear is not based on the truth, but on what the observer can see! There is no ‘true’ reason to fear. This is the picture of the times we are in now. We can observe the deep dark valley – and fear. Or we can focus on the navigation of the ONE on the other side and steer accordingly on the tracks – with no effect from the abyss on the vehicle crossing!
We are currently on the track of the KINGDOM of GOD, mounted by GOD over the abyss of time – a disastrous time for the world. If we follow HIS INSTRUCTIONS, if we hear His VOICE, this dark valley in world history will have NO EFFECT on us. In fact, it will bring us safely from here to there – according to HIS PLAN.
In this process, all worldly garbage will fall away, or stay behind on the other side! We will be freed from worldly bondage crossing the abyss!”
Women 4 Housing 4 Women
Hanneke Pretorius & Louisa Ralepelle
A group of women have embarked on a project to provide practical housing solutions to black woman headed households in need, starting in Ikageng, Potchefstroom.
Maria Ndakana, aged 59, is a single mother and grandmother who has 7 dependants and is working to provide for her and her extended family. She lives in a shack without water or bathroom facilities in Ikageng Extension 6 and is awaiting her long-promised RDP house. Within the known political reality around the provision of housing, she might not even get her own stand from government…
With pride and perseverance, she fetches water from a community standpipe about 500m away; heats water on a paraffin or gas stove and keeps her house and yard neat. She is creating the best possible environment for her family and wants to see her children and grandchildren grow and prosper.
The WOMEN 4 HOUSING 4 WOMEN programme aims to promote dignity for such women, empower them, promote economic freedom, and build resilience against all hazards and unwanted elements. The programme consists of various packages, based on specific needs and fundable units.
At this stage, we have managed to fix the roof of Maria’s shack, the holes in the corrugated iron walls that the wind was blowing through as well as fitting new glass to broken windows. An additional room was also built to provide a second bedroom for the 9 people living in the shack. A two-burner gas unit and a gas heater together with gas bottles were provided for cooking and heating.
The WOMEN 4 HOUSING 4 WOMEN programme can also have the following spin-offs:
• Link to job opportunities through the JOBJACK platform, if the individual is unemployed
• Link to financial budgeting and debt management programmes
• Link to leadership development programmes
• Link to further education programs for children in the household
The programme has a specific criteria to qualify and commitment to the programme through stewardship can be rewarded by qualifying for additional packages available for donor funding.
Maria’s daughter is currently studying towards a Bachelor of Education at the North West University with a NSFAS loan and she is taking great leaps and strides in rising out of her circumstances.
WE INVITE ANYONE WHO WANTS TO GET INVOLVED WITH THE PROGRAMME (EITHER FROM THE DONOR OR BENEFICIARY SIDE) TO CONTACT HANNEKE PRETORIUS (072 580 7530)
Chubby Chick has contributed to the programme – we thank you for impacting Maria’s life for the better!
The following packages or a combination thereof are available to improve a woman and her dependant’s livelihood through:
• Structure maintenance (isolation, roof fixing etc.)
• Home makeover (i.e. paint, second hand furniture like cupboards, beds or curtains)
• Water assistance (water cart/ tap on stand)
• Toilet (Enviroloo etc.)
• Energy (gas stove, gas heater, solar
power pack for basic lighting and charging of laptops/phones/fridge etc)
• Vegetable garden starter pack and planting of fruit trees (tomatoes, cabbage, spinach etc)
• New, moveable house structure (Podhouse/Conceptos Plasticos structure)
• Housing options awareness and guidance when the individual earns above a certain amount (can apply for an individual FLISP subsidy)
KINGDOM FINANCE TRUST
We are pleased that the Touching Africa Institutional Portfolio is growing, enabling us to serve the community of Africa on more terrains. Kingdom Finance Trust was registered in April of 1997, with the purpose to serve as a financial conduit for Kingdom work in Africa. It is now affiliated and incorporated in the Touching Africa framework to act in coordination with other existing functionalities.
A specific focus (based on Jeremiah 7:5/6) is to contribute to the practice of justice between people, by looking after the “refugee, the orphan and widow” in our midst. Flowing from this vision, one of the aims is to activate the BODY of CHRIST to embrace the refugee crisis in Pretoria. Various role players including the Social Justice Foundation, Farming Gods Way, Africa Missions, Agri and food specialists, work together and are coordinated by Jabram du Plessis representing Kingdom Finance Trust.
This followed the involvement of a team of professional negotiators led to the first refugees being released. Those with families returned home, while others were accommodated on a farm that belongs to a ministry outside Pretoria.
Although the direct need for shelter, food and employment needs to be addressed in the short term, the long-term goal is to enable people to become self-employed, and to send a message of hope to the world. In this process the issue of hunger, starvation and malnutrition must be addressed, people trained to cultivate organic crops, and to produce highly nutritional food.
After our intervention, the response not only from the 100 plus refugees, after months of incarceration, but also destitute wives and children, was overwhelming. Such outreaches may have a lot to do with the welcome and hospitality South Africans experience in Africa. Despite world and local politics over the years dictating otherwise, the bush telegraph from destitute people being touched by SA’s and godly kindness, has scoured Africa reaching every hamlet and opening the way for the gospel. God works in mysterious ways. All glory and honor to Him, our Lord and Savior.
Advocate Jabram du Plessis was thanked by the Social Justice Foundation for his selfless commitment “to the cause of the destitute and the poor” and congratulated with others on this successful intervention. In the photo is Jabram with some of the refugees on their arrival on the farm.