2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 4,400 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 7 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Dear Aids

You have seen to it that our children raise themselves

No more bread coz you kill the strongest

Good food and drugs tame you

But my Africans cannot afford you

Oh, you come with such shame!

Why are we afraid to expose you?

And pretend you don’t exist?

We are not afraid of you, in case you boast

We are afraid of each other.

What the other might think of another

Cos they have contracted a monster

Exactly what is you deal?

To depopulate the earth?

To provide evidence for, infidelity

Lust, Sexual abuse, Carelesness

What of the instances where contracted in trust?

Or, in a mother’s womb?

I have yet to perceive the substance of your existence

In case you should know,

You are not the worst abomination to man kind

You threaten with death

And yet the path leads there for every man on earth

With or without your help

You are such an opportunist, a coward in fact

Where is the bravery in attacing the unborn?

You mererly open the door for other parasites

You have no weapon of your own

I’ll tell you what you have taught mankind:

Acceptance

Tolerance

Self love

Healthy habits

Prudence

And most of all Hope!

Guess that was never part of your plans, right?

Life is always a gift and you will never diminish its value

It matters not whether you were born through

An experiment gone wrong

Or felony between man and beast

Regardless, your existence should cease…

 Sincerley Yours

Makhanyile

In my lifetime I have seen and heard of the worst kind of illness and Aids is not the worst. It’s all in how you manage and perceive it. We are all affected, one way or the other. In times like these people have learnt to give and seek support to stand against this epidemic. Our men have learned to talk and our parents are learning acceptance. It is true that whatever was meant for bad, God will use for good.

If you have tested positive or know someone who has, pray for an open mind. Be ready to listen and likewise receive. Because life is a journey, every step matters and nothing should that take away from you. Dust yourself up, do what you need to do and move on with life.  A cancer/ mentally ill patient is in a worse off position than you. Love yourself and love life.

It’s the festive season again, let’s take care of ourselves and protect the ones we love. Happy AIDS day! Ke Dezemba boss 🙂

You too can make it happen. Why not?

We thought it would never happen, or something will go wrong, or our planning would just not be enough. But it did happen and everything was beyond perfect. I could have been at home watching cartoons (like I do most Saturday mornings), but last week Saturday was something special and I was glad to be a part of it.

Together with the Project Hope ladies, we organized a special lunch for teenage girls from Hope for the Helpless orphanage in Mofolo. You see since Project Hope was incepted, the orphanage has been our beneficiary in terms of donating groceries every month. However we know that a child is not only raised on food, they need love and knowledge that someone actually cares about them. So this was basically to spend some quality time with the girls, to get to know them better, while encouraging them to dream beyond their circumstances. That is why the theme for the lunch was: Living your dream. We tried to make the event as special as possible, from delivering handmade invites with their names on them to giving each one a rose when they entered the event venue.

We were prayerful on the weeks leading up to the event that God prepares the young ladies hearts to receive something and grow from it. Well our guest for the day, made sure of that. We had Thendo (Mpho’s sister) come share her life story with the girls and how she managed to escape rape and death situations to be where she is today. Born of a preacher mother, she was one rebellious teenager and got herself into all sorts of trouble which exposed herself to many horrible things, some of which she is still dealing with right now. But by God’s grace she is now a blooming woman, who has just written her own book and is focusing her life into Social entrepreneurship and living for the Lord. She said, she wishes at her age she had someone caring enough to host an event like that for her and warn her of what life carries ahead.

The girls were encouraged, and I hope they understood that by them growing up in an orphanage might just be a blessing in disguise and God actually cares for them more than they think. We had fun sessions with the young ladies when they shared a bit more about their dreams and what defines them. And let me tell you, those kids are one joyful bunch, some even sang for us! We obviously didn’t have money to finance the entire event, we got young professional ladies to sponsor a girl for lunch. These ladies also brought knowledge to the girls in the various fields, which added more value to the afternoon. I recall Sandra (a medical doctor), saying: “We are encouraging you to be the best you can be, so we can have a coffee break with other black sister doctors”. Yes our desire is make the most out of these ladies and see them thrive and be successful so we can grow our young black professional landscape.

Obviously the event was a once off treat for the girls, as the main concern over their lives right now is food, clothes and decent schooling. But this one thing can remind them how special they are. Knowing that the next time they go to school without lunch money, they know they have a provider who does exceedingly and above than what they can imagine. Even if it’s just once or twice a year.

Sharing on this event is not to place glory on anyone, but God. Yes, I honor the ladies for working relentlessly to make the event a success, but ultimately this showed me that when God gives you a vision, He will bring it to pass. There were so many things to worry about, from the weather to the finances, but He took care of everything. This shows that you don’t need to accomplish xy or z to help someone out. Just heed God’s call inside of you to reach out, and trust Him to do the rest. To think those “special invites” were printed in color on a normal A4 page and wrapped in ribbons that cost R2.50 each. Because we had the heart to make it special, the almighty made a way for it to be.

You just need to desire to help someone out, it may be through kind words, financial assistance or even going to visit the less fortunate. Nothing you do can ever be too little.

A big thank you to project Hope, the ladies who sponsored the lunch, my brother for providing us with transport, the venue people for hosting us, and God for holding up the weather, providing  goodie bags, trusting us with his little ones and giving us the vision.

You too can bless someone, with something. Remember, we are blessed to be a blessing. You are not where you are because you deserve to be, your opportunities could have easily been granted to someone else. And you don’t have to be a millionaire before you can help others. Maybe driving around with a packet of oranges and giving it to the beggars you come across on your way to work could be a start OR you can come together on a monthly basis with colleagues and donate say R100 each and decided how you’re going to help someone out. Just think of a way and you will find it.

If you want to know about Project Hope, or the Orphanage, please go to our new page: From God with Love. I have also profiled a few other initiatives that serve to make a difference in other people’s lives and you can get involved with them if you like.

Izandla ziyagezana.

Life is short…

Not a single one of us is guaranteed another day on this earth. Our days were apportioned to us before we were even born albeit, there’s a time for everything; to live, to die, to grow, to cry, to laugh, to hurt and to love. These times should be treasured (and accepted), living each moment as our last, because we don’t know what tomorrow holds. These are people who have been part of life somehow. Our paths in life crossed and some point and a part of me was shared with them and so was theirs. Let me tell you a few stories…

We used to call my brother in law’s granddad, Da (father). He was a vital element in my life somehow. This year, when everybody was celebrating Mandela day, our family wasn’t in a jolly mood. You, see 2 days before we had lost our Madiba. Da was also born in 1910, we were looking forward to his 92 birthday in November. An old man who was strong and had so much love, all of a sudden fell sick after a few weeks passed on. We were sad, but also grateful that we shared in his life.

Shortly after Da’s passing, his grandson had an annoying headache. End July he was admitted into hospital and after a week or so he died. We buried him on top of his wife who passed away in a car accident a couple of years ago. They leave 4 kids, the youngest being 8. God will keep the children, but unfortunately life had to happen for him. May his soul rest in peace.

Then there’s Ntombana. A chick we grew up with, we lived in the same neighborhood in Dobsonville. She went missing on the 23rd of September. Her body was then found by cops in a nearby cemetery 5 days later, she had been raped and stabbed to death. I still can’t get over how horrible her last moments might have been. She was openly lesbian and has been ever since I knew her. Yes, everyone has their time to die, but no one can judge another. Farewell Ntombana, a very sweet somebody who is the only person I know who has a smile on every single picture. Laid to rest 4 Thursdays ago a few days before Gay Pride. Here’s her story http://www.citypress.co.za/SouthAfrica/News/Lesbians-family-begs-for-justice-20121006 (There is only one lawgiver who is able to save and destroy. Who are you to judge another? –James 4vs12).

On the same day I went to see Ntombana’s mother, I started in Braamficherville on the news that Mr Norman had passed away. I know him through Golden Ark senior citizens, a food project, to feed the community. I remember when I last spoke to him he said: My child; “by the time the first rains come this year we need to be ready to plant our crops”. He was the Chairperson of Golden Ark and was passionate about the agricultural project. Gogo Angie told me that the previous Sunday, he woke up like any other day. He just fell on his way to the door and that was the end of him. Death is indeed a thief.

A colleague of mine was telling me about a tragedy that befell her relatives. That morning she had been so tired because they had to identify bodies in Mpumalanga. A recently married couple, went to Swaziland with the groom’s dad and brother to introduce the wife to their relatives there. While travelling back, the family got involved in an accident with a truck and another car. Everyone died on the spot, all 5 of them. Turned out the young bride was pregnant. May their souls rest in peace.

Nathi’s older brother is engaged to my cousin, we were all so fond of him. Born in 1995, he was shaping up to be fine young man. He loves cars, his father owns taxis so he learned driving at a young age. He is the one that picks up my little cousins when they are invited to a party somewhere. On the 13th, he was driving his father’s BMW with a few friends, something went wrong and they were involved in a car accident. http://www.iol.co.za/news/crime-courts/cops-blamed-for-teen-s-fatal-crash-1.1408390. Out of the 4 people that were in the car, 2 died and 2 were critically injured. It was Nathi’s funeral 2 Saturday’s ago.

About 5 weeks ago, Pana came to my place with Mom to help us move in some stuff. He is an old family friend who visits every other weekend. Pana was no trouble at all; he just loved watching tv and smoking his cigarettes. Last week Sunday, he was taking a walk to a spaza in the neighborhood. A taxi sped past and knocked him over. He sustained head injuries and a broken leg. 3 days later he passed away in hospital. By the way, the driver of the taxi is a young teenage girl who was playing around with her boyfriend’s company car. Her life has changed, forever, just like how Pana is gone forever. I’m still sad.

The previous Sunday we woke to the news that some guys from my hometown (Nquthu) were missing. Funny enough, I know all of them and my step mom is related to some of them. They were driving in a low lying bridge from Magogo (Northern KZN). Apparently there was a heavy storm on Saturday night and their car was swept away, 2 managed to get out the car and stand on the roof of it. The other 3 got washed away in it. Follow the link to read their story http://www.thepost.co.za/woman-watches-teachers-drown-1.1408922. Their bodies were only last week Friday (http://www.thepost.co.za/teacher-s-body-found-others-still-missing-1.1411997) more than 30km’s from where they drowned. Imindeni yakwaNgobese, kwaSikhakhane nakwa Buthelezi iduduzeke.

Life is short guys. I’m reciting these tragedies as though fables, but that is the reality of the earth we live in. I am beyond sad, these experiences have just taught me to accept things as they are and move on. Life brings us new turns every day, and we never know what can happen next. Maybe you’re sitting there and your last day is a few months away? Will you be grateful for your time here, or are you going to wish you had made much out of your time? We must get off the paradigm that there’s always tomorrow to do this or that. Tomorrow’s not guaranteed.

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell ad make a profit.” Whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a small vapor that appears for a little while and vanishes away. Instead you ought to say,”if the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that. But now you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. Therefore to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin__James 4 vs 13-17

If you’ve been meaning to tell someone how wonderful they are, do it today, not tomorrow. Mend that relationship, send that gift, go visit that relative, buy that house, open that business, write that book, go for that audition, make that suggestion. If you have a dream, start living it, or least start finding a way on how to. Our lives are but a mist that appears in the morning and disappears by day. That is how short your life is. Start living for today, let go of the past because it will keep you there and prevent you from loving the here and now. The people you just read about are ordinary people, as special as you are, nothing different about them. If it happened to them, it can surely happen to you.

With the understanding that life is short, it is wise to start planning for eternity. Start serving the author of time and you will understand that death is not the end. But the beginning of another, beautiful, worry free life with our Father. If you’ve been meaning to surrender your life to Christ, do it now, today, don’t postpone it much longer because we don’t know what tomorrow holds. Choose life.

All flesh is as grass. And all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers. And it’s flower falls away. But the word of the Lord endures forever__1 Peter 1 vs 24

Facebook Frustrations #2


When I first started blogging I did a post on facebook frustrations and I promised to do a part 2 at some stage. We love face book and most of what it has to offer, but there are those little annoyances we come across. Some are software related and some are just common sense not being so common.

1. Most annoying thing on face book right now, is this “see how many people view your profile spam”. People this thing doesn’t work, stop clicking on it because it will send itself to random contacts. I cannot recall how many times I’ve deleted that stuff from my wall. If you don’t want people to view your profile; hide your wall. If you don’t want certain people to view it; block them. But stop wasting time snooping on who views your profile or who doesn’t; you also don’t want the people you stalk to find you out. So why are you trying to expose others? In any case the link doesn’t work *tongue out*

2. Now, can someone help me understand why people put their bbm pins as their status? Maybe I’m being stuck up. I thought bbm was a bit more personal than facebook, why do you want everyone in it? Do you have that much time to chat to the same people on facebook and on bbm? Then why not throw in your phone number while you at it. Please people, your bbm contact list will grow over time, don’t rush. Speed kills.

3. Another absolutely frustrating thing on fb is seeing those Daily Horoscopes, Fortune ccokies, Picture of the day, etc, updates. Now all you see on your TL in the morning are these daily impersonal updates. People don’t just go around clicking every single thing that pops on your wall, if you want to win something go play the lotto or something.

4. We thank God for the ability of checking in at whatever place we are so people can know we are going places, lol. However I don’t understand a person who lives in Roodepoort and checks in at Roodepoort KFC. For the what? Who are you informing that they should find you there? I’m not trying to be funny here, but some of the check ins I see are so random that I question the reasoning behind them. Or someone checks in at home or in bed, really?

5. Other annoyances include very long status updates, where you get an option to “continue reading”. I don’t have time to spend 10 mins on your status, while there’s 400 others to look at. If you have jokes to share, send an email. Twitter retweets and what nots, belong on twitter. There’s nothing more boring than someone updating a long thread of a twitter conversation on facebook. I just don’t see the point.

6. Last but no least: Meaningless birthday messages! I know face books reminded you that it’s someone’s birthday today. You don’t have an obligation to write on their wall. If you are not that tight, please don’t post “HBD” on their wall because you HAVE to. Trust me their day will be just as pleasant even if you didn’t write your 3 letters on their wall. A birthday wish has to mean something, and to be honest it actually dampens one’s spirit to receive an insincere birthday message. Can we please be kind to each other people, asseblief. It’s my birthday on Friday, if I receive an “HBD” on my wall, I shall delete it. No hard feelings.

7. Oh, one last frustration: Ladies, revealing pictures deserve a thumbs down. Not only on face book, but on all social networks. Love yourselves maan.

8. Facebook should have a DISLIKE button, pleeeeease! With some of the nonsense people post you just wish you had the liberty to discourage it.
I know, we might agree on some of the points I raised above and disagree on others. Regardless everything has it’s pro’s and con’s, just like no one is perfect. Other social networks are rising up and face book might become obsolete at some point, so it’s better to voice your frustustrations while they’re still relevant. Just like I did.
So, what are your facebook frustrations?

Facebook Frastruations#1

Just so you know….

This is for all the ladies in unhealthy relationships. Yes, you know who you are, don’t need to a doctor to diagnose your situation. So listen up! If you’re unsure, listen up as well.

This is not a break up post, so guys please don’t hate me; I’m just sharing small basic truths that we as women sometimes forget. Loving someone means you’ll wait for them, but you need to respect yourself too by knowing, if and when it’s time to walk away.

If a man wants you, nothing can keep him away.  
If he doesn’t want you, nothing can make him stay.  
Stop making excuses for a man and his behavior. 
Allow your intuition (or spirit) to save you from heartache.  
Stop trying to change yourselves for a relationship that’s not meant to be.  
Slower is better.  
Never live your life for a man before you find what makes you truly happy.  
If a relationship ends because the man was not treating you as you deserve  
then no, you can’t “be friends.”  A friend wouldn’t mistreat a friend.  
Don’t settle. If you feel like he is stringing you along, then he probably is.  
Don’t stay because you think “it will get better.” You’ll be mad at yourself  
a year later for staying when things are not better.  
The only person you can control in a relationship is you.  
Avoid men who’ve got a bunch of children by a bunch of different women.  
He didn’t marry them when he got them pregnant,  
Why would he treat you any differently?  
Always have your own set of friends separate from his.  
Maintain boundaries in how a guy treats you.  
If something bothers you, speak up.  
Never let a man know everything. He will use it against you later.  
You cannot change a man’s behavior. Change comes from within.  
Don’t EVER make him feel he is more important than you are…even if he has  
more education or in a better job. Do not make him into a quasi-god.  
He is a man, nothing more, nothing less.  
Never let a man define who you are.  
Never borrow someone else’s man.   
If he cheated with you, he’ll cheat ON you.  
A man will only treat you the way you ALLOW him to treat you.  
All men are NOT dogs. 
You should not be the one doing all the bending…compromise is a two-way street.  
You need time to heal between relationships: there is nothing cute about  
baggage! deal with your issues before pursuing a new relationship.  
You should never look for someone to COMPLETE you…a relationship consists  
of two WHOLE individuals…look for someone complementary…not supplementary.  
Dating is fun…even if he doesn’t turn out to be Mr. Right.  
Make him miss you sometimes…when a man always knows where you are and your’re 
always readily available to him- he takes you for granted.  
Don’t fully commit to a man who doesn’t give you everything that you need.  
Share this with other ladies….. You’ll make someone SMILE, another  
RETHINK her choices, and another woman PREPARE.  
They say it takes a minute to find a special person, an hour to appreciate   
him, a day to love him, and an entire lifetime to forget him.  
 

BY THE WAY, THIS WAS WRITTEN BY A MAN, SO TAKE A HINT.

-Author Unknown

Sometimes you have to forget how you feel and remember what you deserve. Remove yourself from situation that no longer honors you. Love yourself enough.

The more stable, confident and self loving a woman is, the healthier will her relationships be.

Sweetest Revenge

When people deliberately hurt us, our natural reaction is to seek justice. We may forgive them but deep down inside, we wish that something equally bad happens to them so they can feel how we felt.

Here’s a piece of advice: If someone hurts you, please don’t spend your life waiting to see their downfall because it will never come! You just need to deal with the negative energy they enforced upon you, learn from it and move right along. Their whole life should not perish just coz they did you wrong. God loves them as much as He loves you and if you don’t perish from your wrongs, they won’t too.

If someone doesn’t love you/rejects you it doesn’t mean they are bad people altogether. You are not money, not everyone will have the burning desire to want to have you. Don’t hate for not being loved, rather respect other people’s choices to choose who they want in their lives and who they don’t. Their decision to dislike/ disrespect you is based on their perceptions, and has no reflection on you whatsoever. So other people’s actions towards you should not define your character and dictate who you are.

You see when someone does something bad to you. By trying to “sort them out” or “teach them a lesson”, actually means that you are now stooping to their level. And trust me; it drains so much of your energy. You should obviously express your hurt and tell them what they did is not right, but beyond that there isn’t much you can do. Instead continue being who you were toward them. I know it’s hard, but treating your enemies with kindness is the worst thing you could ever do to them. Guard yourself in prayer so you never lose your peace. You are exercising power with gentleness, the bible calls it meekness and it has such positive fruit on your character.

Allow God to deal the injustice you have suffered the best way He can, it is not up to you to decide on someone else’s fate. Think of all the people you have wronged, deliberately or otherwise, would it be fair for God to let them have a say as to how your life should end up? You see we want to settle scores and see that people get what they deserve and yet God does not give us what we deserve in our transgressions. This, my friend is what forgiveness is about. It is not just simply saying: “I’m sorry”

Yes you forgive and let go of the hurt, but seeing the person prosper, sort of hurts. Not in a jealous kind of way, but in a “you don’t deserve to be this happy” kind of way. You see we take the act/hurt and define the person by it. We brand the person as our heart ache defines them. It’s like saying an entire bank is useless because you were once issued a faulty card and you couldn’t access money to pay for a meal you just ate or something.

Sometimes people will not realize their fault towards you, at that very time you want them to see it. You may express your anger as forcefully as you want, but if they chose not to realize it, they just won’t. That’s why it sometimes helps to put the shut to the up. Yes, just shut up and let it go. Maybe you might even have to apologize even if you were wronged. Simply do it and move right along. It is not a sign of weakness; it just shows that you choose which battles to fight.

You cannot afford to lose your peace of mind, just because someone decided to be rude today. Sometimes you just need to let people drown in their stupidity so they can learn the valuable lessons life has to offer. You just walk on in faith, believing that the Lord knows best how to deal with them. Just cast it all on Him and best believe He will heal your hurt in the process. Focus on your own journey in life, learn your lessons and keep to your lane.

Let God be the ultimate judge, because your definition of noble is not absolute.

They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint- Isaiah 40:31

Blame everyone, but the Police: Marikana

Our nation mourns the tragic loss of lives of 34 miners who were shot by police at the Lonmin Marikana mine in Rustenburg last week. The whole nation is in shock and the affected families are going through unbearable grief through the loss of their bread winners /fathers/husbands brothers and sons.  In a time like this, playing the blame game will not help bring back the lives lost. However someone has to take accountability for this situation. If there is anyone to blame, let it not be the police.

Yes, I blame everyone, but the police.

I believe that if the police didn’t use guns they would be the dead ones. Please follow this link to see that the protesters actually fired live ammunition first- http://www.news24.com/Multimedia/South-Africa/New-evidence-shows-Marikana-miners-shot-first-20120821

The reports fail to highlight that the death toll from Marikana is actually 44 and not the 34 that were “massacred” last Thursday. 10 people had been killed in the mine since the strike started including 2 police officers who were hacked to death.

“Ten people have been reported dead since the strike began on Friday. Earlier, officials from the platinum mine announced that the body of a man was found on the premises. He had been shot dead. Another man died in hospital on Sunday after being hacked with a panga as he left the mine after the evening shift. On Saturday, two security guards were killed when the car they were travelling in was set alight. Scores of other people have been injured in the violent unrest in the last four days. Police also reported that eight vehicles were torched on the mine property on Sunday” – Mail and Guardian

Besides the strike being illegal, it was also very violent. It is a valid concern that the miners should be treated with dignity by their employers and they have the right to voice their concerns. However I fail to understand how they were hoping to achieve that with violence. These miners brought spears, knives, and now as we can see in the video, guns to a protest. They intended for this to be a violent protest, but who are they fighting against really?

This leads me to my first and biggest culprits: The unions!  I personally blame every single death on the unions. Below is an extract from a news report a few days after the protest action began:

“The majority of those killed are understood to have been involved in an illegal strike at the mine after rock drillers affiliated to the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (Amcu) demanded their monthly salary of R4 000 be increased to R12 500. Relations between striking workers and the NUM have severely broken down, with most workers saying they were fed up with years of broken promises. While the violent strike has been blamed on clashes between NUM and Amcu, the striking workers said they were a united force currently with no allegiances to a particular union. Amcu, however, has been recruiting aggressively at the plant but was currently below the threshold necessary to enter the two bargaining units at the mine.” Source- Mail & Guardian online.

Clearly NUM and AMCU were pushing their own agendas and encouraging the miners to fight against each other. Who hosts a strike such illegally in this day and age? (except for service delivery protesters) As unions they should know the protocol they are supposed to operate within. Apparently there was even a sangoma to strengthen the fighters against the police. Who paid for the Sangoma? because the last time I checked they don’t offer their services for free.

The mine workers are vulnerable and they knew they deserve better, but are unsure how to get it. And that points me to the second culprits: Lonmin

It is beyond me how the mining company left it to the police to resolve this matter. The SAPS is not trained to solve labor disputes on their behalf. A few days after the massacre Lonmin gave the workers an ultimatum to go back to work or lose their jobs. Besides being unsympathetic, couldn’t they issue that ultimatum after the first death at the mine? Secondly if workers were being rewarded fairly we wouldn’t be in this position in the first place. The living conditions the miners are subjected to are degrading to say the least. With the amount of profits the mine makes, it fails to even invest in the community they are based in. Please see this article: http://mg.co.za/article/2012-06-28-platinum-wealth-holds-no-shine-for-people-left-living-in-the-dust

The income disparities between the executives and the workers is saddening. SA has the highest Gini co-efficient in the world. Which means the gap between the richest person and the poorest person is as wide as it can ever be. And for that I blame the apartheid government. I blame them for leaving a legacy of poverty and inequality. Now our people want to share in the wealth of their land which they extract with their bare hands, but they cannot because all of that belongs to PLC.

I also blame politicians who shout unwarranted commands to nationalize the mines so people can get their fair share of the wealth. Uh, err, I guess it’s too late for that because the mine owners have legal rights to the property and they function within an economic system. I don’t believe nationalization is the answers to all of our woes and definitely do not encourage it. But when you take that concept and feed it to a worked out, under paid laborer, you instill a sense of entitlement and they feel robbed. Then they will be willing to fight for :what is theirs”

Another party to blame would be the government themselves. They all knew how tense the situation was in Marikana and no one thought to bring the army to handle the situation. Giving the unions too much power and only paying attention when 34 lives are added to the 10 already lost. Oh, also for sucking up to big corporates by charging them a constant tax  rate compared to us and also making friends with the Chinese. Ok I better stop now before I blame them for everything. Oh, I also blame them for Juju.

By the way, Julius Malema went to the police station with the surviving miners to open a case of murder against the police. Apparently he went into the charge office with 7 of the miners who will be witnesses to the investigations. This is a day after the President appointed a judicial enquiry to the incident and after several police officers at the Marikana police station adviced him that police cannot investigate themselves. Smh, I blame the Gov for people like him.

The police did not do a sterling job by killing 34 people and I’m in no way commending them. But we need to remember that they are people who have families and have to keep a job like all of us. 1 cop dead is 1 too many, if you fire a gun at the police you should be smart enough to know they are going to shoot back. Please dont compare this with Sharpville or June 16 massacres, the protesters did not fire live amunition.

I’m still hesitant  to blame the mine workers. Yes they have to take responsibility for their violence, but no one deserves to die for a wage hike. In all my life I have never seen wages increase by 300%. Unscrupulous people took advantage of our brothers working in the mine. Who were dissastified with their sad reality and were hungry for better. Unions made promises they cannot keep and they encouraged workers to fight for their rights, the only way they knew how. And they even offered them protection to make them invisible and immune to bullets.

It is deeply saddening that a wage protest has ended with such sorrow. 2 weeks ago they were hyping each other up to stand up and fight for their rights. Today some are in prison, some in hospital and others in a mortuary.

May all who lost their lives rest in peace and condolences to all who have lost their loved ones. Let us continue to pray for our nation. This tragedy brought so much grief over my spirit that I even wept. Something’s gotta give, ngempela.

Koze kulunge nini Ma Afrika. Who do you blame?

As I lay still…

I lay still in your tummy

 And you never knew I was there.

I gave you sleepless nights

And morning sickness’s

Yet still you never knew i was there.

Funny cravings and mood swings

Seemed rather usual to you

I gave up trying

All I cud do was lay still in the only home I knew.

I took a small percentage of everything you consumed

Whether gud or bad I had no choice

Finally!

You noticed me

But i heard u say “this can’t be, this baby is a mistake”

But it was too late for you to terminate me.

I shared all your emotions gud and bad

When you cried, I cried

 When you laughed, I laughed.

I kicked and moved in circles hoping you would rub me

But u didn’t.

I grew strong as the thought of me sickened you.

The more u hated me, the more i loved u.

I could move nor kick any further

The time had cum for me to meet you.

I heard him say “push u almost there”

As u screamed your smoke filled lungs out.

I was welcomed by a bright light

And two cold objects holding me on either side.

I cried for i did not know what was happening.

I felt the life line bonding us together being cut off

After being wrapped I was placed in your arms,

For some reason I stopped crying.

This felt right, it felt more like home

But much safer and warmer

I felt your lips on my cheeck and a warm drop of water on my forehead

 All i cud do was blush.

I drank some warm liquid coming from you and slept the whole day next to u.

I felt closer to u than ever.

I drank that warm stuff again

As night approached u laid me right beside u

You spent half the night looking at me,

So did I

But when morning came i was no more.

I had to leave I hope u understand

For now I lay still in your soul

 And still u never knew i was there

By Ntobeko Gaju

Loosing a child is the greatest pain any woman could ever go through. Either the child dies after birth, born still, dies a toddler, or is miscarried. No one bears the pain more than the woman who had that soul growing inside of them. I believe that no one should ever have to go through something like that, but then again, life happens and everything has a reason to it. This type of pain only God can heal because only He can comprehend your hurt, no one else.

If it has happened to you and you ask “why me?” well….why not you? Who do you know that deserves that kind of pain? It’s harsh, I know, but we all have to bear different burdens. I can talk about the pain of a woman who was gang raped or molested several times as a child by different men. Would you have rather had that?

You see when such painful episodes occur, we need to look deep within to find the strength that God has instilled in us as women. We are the apple of His eye and what hurts us, hurts Him. We should never blame Him for the bad things because only goodness can come from Him and He is always there to carry us when we cannot carry ourselves.

A woman’s heart can bury the deepest of pain and yet that same woman will bring joy to all around her. You see our DNA is different from men, we are built with so much strength and gentleness. Only we have the honor to bring life into this earth. Through a very long, difficult and yet sophisticated fashion. To think the lady in the poem, didn’t want the pregnancy and even continued smoking through it. Yet when the child was there, she loved it more than anything in those few hours she had with it. That is a natural quality in us to love our offspring and no man could understand that.

This poem was written by my male cousin , who is a paramedic. Once they helped a young girl of 16 years deliver her baby in the ambulance. Just after giving birth, this girl stood up and said “I don’t want this baby” and she walked away. It will take a very long time for this young girl to heal from those wounds, but at least she gave her baby life. By Ntobeko writing such a poem, it made me realize that men also feel the pain of losing a child. So if you’re going through loss right now, don’t shut yourself out to your partner. He wants to make you feel better while dealing with his own pain as well.

Just know this: Only God can give and take life, you have nothing to do with that. And rest assured that your little one is back in heaven where they belong. Look forward to more blessings in your life and allow God to redeem all that has been lost. Life goes on, that’s what it does.

This woman’s month, let us celebrate the inner strength that we all posses as women.  We are precious and so valuable; we carry so much in our hearts. If you were to ask your mother to share the hurts she has had to stomach in her lifetime you will be depressed for the rest of the year. But she is as happy as happy can be for we have a healer. Only God can heal the pain others can’t reach:  “He leads me beside quiet waters,  He refreshes my soul” (Psalm 23 vs3)

As we celebrate Women’s day, dear woman go search your heart of all the pain undealt with over the years. Bring it to the Lord and ask him to soothe and whiten your spirit. Draw more strength from Him and let go of all the hurt. We know you can handle it, but just not alone.

Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised-Proverbs 31 vs 30

 

It’s complicated…

Never despise your weaknesses because they keep you dependent on God. Let Him take control and all will be well with your Soul 🙂

Waiting for the “One”

I found this on a website and thought you might find it interesting.

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First, we must allow our heavenly Father to do the picking. And secondly, the decision for a mate must be made on a spiritual and intellectual basis before it’s made on an emotional one.

“What about love? Shouldn’t that be the third? You ask. No, and I’ll tell you why”. The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? (Jeremiah 17:19).

The heart is willful and is driven by its own agenda. It does not consider things rationally and intelligently it just loves to love! Therefore you should point it to the right direction: “Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the well spring of life (Proverbs 4:23).

Dating exists not for mating it exists for collecting data. I believe that the biblical design would be friendship, courtship and then marriage.

Remember, women fall in love and get married. Men decide to get married and then look for a wife. Note the difference in order. So if a guy says he’s not looking for anything serious, take his words seriously. If he’s not going in your direction, get off the bus and get on the right one.

Does this man want you? Is he pursuing you? The man who is right for you will pursue you, and God’s hand in the relationship will be clear. No guessing, no fleeces, no dead ends.

Scripture says: “He who finds a wife, finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord” (Proverbs 18:22). Note who finds whom? THE MAN FINDS THE WIFE. From the beginning of time, God has transported men and women in order to put them together.

At the RIGHT time, He will bring that man on the scene and he will find you. In God’s perfect design, the man is the one who recognizes his mate. Adam had no problem recognizing that Eve was his missing rib. You do not need to strategically place yourself anywhere. You don’t have to help a guy out because he is shy!

Men will do whatever they have to do  to get what they truly want. The man in your life should recognize you as the pearl of great price and be willing to do whatever he must in order to gain your hand. If he is passive about gaining your affections, take it as a sign that he is not interested.

Many a woman’s mother has suggested that it is a good idea to marry a man who loves you more than you love him. As cold as that sounds, it actually might be scriptural if you stop to think about it: “We love him because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19). Until then, take the ultimate chill pill. You don’t need a bunch of men in your life to make you feel all right about yourself.

You need only one man- your man, the one God has selected to select you. And trust me, the right man at the wrong man time can be just as awful as the wrong man at any time. So trust God’s timing in this. He is the ultimate matchmaker. Relax, sit pretty and allow yourself to be found.

Again WAIT until the man voices his intentions.

He should take the lead in establishing the relationship. You may have inkling that he is the one, but God will use the man to set the tone of the relationship. Allow him the opportunity to woe you-this is your first act of submission. Jesus set the standard for all men to follow.

They should love us first. And they should lead the relation.

Don’t worry, you wont have to wait forever. Those thoughts that tell you will find yourself at 40, all alone with 6 cats , are just lie.  Don’t allow them to deceive you because we live by faith, not by sight. It’s okay if “the one” takes his own time to find you. Your time while alone will allow you to draw even closer to God, where you are loved with a perfect love. So when love shows up the door, you know what it looks like.

Waiting, re assures you that you are happy and complete as you are. You value and love yourself more. Purity becomes the standard in your life, as you remain obedient in the Lord. Your heart must be so hidden in Christ that he has to go through Him to find you.

A union founded in the Lord has the power to change the world.

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Time to G.R.OW

I have always wondered how Christians are able to live a life of “strictness”. I mean these people don’t drink, smoke, party a lot, they are so in the strict and narrow and yet they say when you are in Christ you are free? Really? Well the “wondering” changed when the Lord made me understand why certain things are detrimental to my growth and why I should forgo them. And the funny thing is, after those things are shed off, I felt free.

The most important thing I would like to advice is that you should never attempt to change a single thing in your life before you come to Christ. Yes, come as you are, He will do all the work, you just need to allow Him. If you get saved and you’re a party freak/alcoholic/thief/gossip, etc, by all means do not stop on anyone’s account. Just keep on going to church after those wild parties, Christ definitely won’t judge you. You see as you grow in knowing him, you also growing in knowing who you are (in Him). So He transforms you from the inside out. Maybe your actions are off your free will but your sprit is being transformed and your mind renewed. So when you eventually discover the truth about your lifestyle, it will be easier to change it because of who you are on the inside.

In this transformation process, we all need to remember that we are each running our own race. So let’s say for instance you have a revelation about alcohol in your life and you decide to stop drinking. Yes it is wise to share that truth with other believers, but don’t impose you standard on them. God is working in them differently and He is rooting out other things that are crucial for that person’s growth at that time. Remember, you are always running in first place, until you decide to run a race that is not yours.

As you grow in knowing the Lord and His ways, you will come across stumbling blocks and you fall short of His standard. Where you really wanted to stop doing something, but you find yourself doing it again. Don’t worry, you are not perfect and Christ knows that and as long as you desire to follow him, He will make sure you conquer those battles. His grace is sufficient for all of our mistakes, but be careful, that you do not live habitually in sin because you know there’s grace. God cannot be fooled and you will reap the rewards of that attitude.Image

Speaking about rewards; everything you invest your time and energy in, it will bear fruits. If you spend all your time infront of the tv, things will not get done. If you spend most of it drinking, you will get broke, loose friends, your health will deteriorate, etc. If you invest all your time at work, you will get more money. Likewise, if you invest your time in word of the Lord and seeking His face you will see the fruits thereof. Those are inside out. You don’t only get transformed, your environment also gets changed and you for some reason look your good! Everything you touch, will be blessed. Your time is your most valuable asset and you invest it the things close to your heart. Where your heart is, so is your treasure is.

Ultimately we can make all the right choices, but our Will power can only get us so far. We need the power of the Holy Spirit to carry us through. We are natural beings with a supernatural helper. For us to have the helper we need to accept Christ and be under His Lordship. You see when you live a surrendered life, you give every single area of your life for Christ to work on. Yes He is interested in every little thing that concerns you, even what to wear to that event on the weekend; He wants to help even in that!

In order for Christ to be Lord in our lives, for Him to be enthroned in the center of them, we need to vacate that throne. Surrendering control of our lives to Christ is the first step to living a Christ centered life. This involves thinking more about Him than ourselves. It means leaving self condemnation, self exaltation, self-determination and self preservation behind and embracing His work His work on the cross, seeking to glorify Him with or lives, allowing Him to lead us and trusting Him to provide for us and protect us. Accepting the Lordship of Christ is not simply about believing, it’s about acting on that belief. This means putting into practice what the bible says is righteous and walk free from what is sin. It also means that we follow His leading through the Holy Spirit. We can’t do this alone, in our own strength, but God’s grace is freely available to help us. For he who the Son sets free is free indeed.

So take it one step at a time. The Holy Spirit will convict you of what is right and wrong, the word will also guide you. Strive to know Christ personally, so you work through the issues in your life with Him, one by one. He knows you by name, and cares for you. He doesn’t want to cramp your style, but to give you life in it’s fullness and best kind of freedom. Beyond what you can ever imagine. Those disciplined Christians all started where you are today. They were intentional about their walk in Christ and He has pruned them to His pleasure.

“For you did not receive a Spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry Abba Father. The Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God” Romans 8 vs 15-16

A Love Letter to 1976

If someone was to write a letter, to the youth today what would they say? We are facing a different struggle to that of 1976. We have AIDS, unemployment, moral decay, alcoholism, etc to fight against. Are we really doing enough as young people to take charge of the situation or we are all too concerned about our business. As a young professional, is there some knowledge/wisdom are you imparting to the young people where you come from?  Are the National youth structures engaged in dealing with the problems faced by young people or are they just consumed in politics so much that they forget the very people they should be representing.Image

 

The 1976 generation resembled the Hebrews

Ready to cross the Red Sea

But Political insanity was their greatest enemy

Towards spreading their black power revolution across the continent

As a present generation, your greatest enemy is the spiritual poverty within us

Yes, as Africans we have not achieved half of what we fought for

So when we do not honor the generations before us

Not only have be blocked the positive aspirations but also the direction of the upcoming generations

The 1976 generation was born from the strongest black seed

Dedicated to true revolution with an afro-consciousness mindset

Your struggle and bravery was an epitome of African redemption

 

To the youth of 1976; your determination was an endless stream of tears

That flows into a gulf of inspiration that compels us to learn, live and grow

To the youth of 1976; your African dream was parallel to Nkwame Kruma independence & liberation ideologies

To the youth of 1976; your struggle was a carbon copy of Marcus Garvey & Robet Sobukwe’s Black Nationalism

To the youth of 1976; Africa gave birth to the first sober conscious, mindful generations

In solidarity they spoke the dreams of our forefathers, who never saw the light of freedom

Their spirits enveloped, shackled in pains of abject poverty

The sober generation of 1976 was a perfect manifestation of the ancient prophecy foretold by Timbuktu intellectuals

Through their blood, history of mankind was painted by black progress

The youth of 1976 were absolute perfect agents of change, manifesting to that dream and prophecy

Pioneers, revolutionaries, millionaires armed with stones and petrol bombs

Through their bravery, they out an end to the wayward sporadic Antu Education and produced freedom

 

To the youth of 1976;

Nothing much has changed; people are still living under sub human conditions

I salute those who lost their lives for true democratic liberation

Despite the complete elimination and gross destruction of separate development

As Africans we have been enslaved by our black government

Who sold our country to neoliberal policy with a legacy of gross inequality?

To the youth of 1976;

You should know that Andries Tatane was killed by the gangster police force

For exercising his democratic right to quality service delivery and freedom

Yes as Africans we have not achieved half of what we fought for

To the youth of 1976: I love you

Written by Eddie Mkhatshwa

 

I really believe that June 16 has lost its essence, especially young people who view it as just another public holiday to have jol in your school uniform. Institutions don’t make thing any easier; where their best way to commemorate the day is to have events at the stadiums and give out free t-shirts and food to the young person, that’s it! Our young people need more than that; we need jobs, education, exposure, moral regeneration.  If those 1976 kids could see what they died for, it would be really say. I’m not painting doom and gloom here, but we are not as conscious to our social issues as we should be. We need to be the change we want to see in the world, no one can change our world for us, but our selves. Other kids died for equal opportunity, now that those opportunities are here (as few and far between as they are), we are not fully taking charge of them. Neither are we facing our challenges with courage.

Let’s keep the spirit alive by making a positive change this year. Please join Innerheights by supporting the Alcohol Free youth day campaign. You can go to their blog (below) and also follow them on twitter @AFYDjune16. On facebook the page is www.facebook.com/alcoholfreeyouthday. This campaign provides some interesting stats on how alcohol is being abused and how it affects young people.

How will you celebrate this holiday?

Dear South Africa

Respect is Earned. Elders are Respected.

After City Press published a picture of President Jacob Zuma with his genitals exposed, the entire country was shocked, to say the least. A lot of reactions and opinions were expressed. I for one didn’t know how to feel about it, but I know that this issue was given too much attention. Perhaps it did deserve it or maybe it didn’t. Here’s my take on this matter, I won’t lie, this will be tricky as it borders between the thin lines of morality vs objectivity. I am unfortunately not going to take sides, as my idea of truth is not absolute, so I can only share my objective opinion on the matter. Please do forgive me if some of my arguments may seem offensive, but sometimes we just need to call a Spade a Spade simply because it looks like one.

The entire country came to a standstill because of “The Spear” by Brett Murray. I would like to declare that I did find the picture disrespectful towards the Mr Zuma. No living human being should ever be ridiculed like that, because none is perfect, not even one of us. “He, who has no sin, let him be the first to cast a stone”

You may not like Zuma, perhaps you never even voted for him, but the fact remains that he is the president of the country. He has to be respected as a leader of the nation. For me the most painful part is just imagining if something like this was done to my own father and my children and their friends saw it. It is wrong, I won’t lie. Brett Murray could have put his point across differently; I mean Mr Zuma is the President after all. In other African countries grave occurrences could have fallen on the artist who painted such a picture of the president. Children are even afraid to utter the President’s name, not out fear, but of respect for the highest position in the land.

Thus Brett Murray playing ignorant by saying “he did not mean to hurt anyone by the exhibition” really is an insult; he should just apologize to the President and the nation as a whole.  Plus, before you draw a picture of someone in the nude you ask for permission at least. He knew this would be controversial, but then again a lot of things about our President are controversial.

Which brings me to my next point; had our President been a different person, he would have been depicted differently. He wasn’t painted with a big heart or big brains or big hands, but with his genitals out. I believe a person should inspire the reverence they crave and the same applies to Jacob Zuma. The genitals are not an attack on his cultural decision to practice polygamy contrary to what the rest of the ANC population believes. A dignified father of a household does not go around sleeping with random women openly and impregnating them. Some of the women have HIV and some of them are his friend’s children with no expressed intentions to marry them. Yes a lot of men do these things out there, but in as much as we are required to respect the office of presidency, he should also do the same. So polygamy is not the problem here, reckless sexual behavior is.

Another thing, commenting on The spear in isolation is misguided and it deepens the offence. Zuma’s portrait was part of a whole exhibition. And according to my understanding, the theme was to reflect on SA politics and how things have changed from fighting for freedom to nurturing corruption while the poor remain poor. And we must all admit that Zuma has been the most notorious leader this country has ever had, from a rape and corruption trial to presidency; the most questionable high profile appointments to a conviction and subsequent parole of his financial advisor, there is then, of course, his weakness for the opposite sex which is evident for all to see. So the portrayal is not an attack on his persona, but on his conduct as a leader and the examples he sets. No one should be judged on their personal decisions, but he can try to contain his weaknesses for the benefit of the people in his sphere of influence. The bible says: if it causes your brother to stumble, don’t do it. No amount of boycotting or striking can erase Zuma’s previous conduct. So in the context of the entire exhibition, Zuma’s portrait did make it’s own statement.

My key subject matter though, is how this matter was handled by the entire nation. No doubt, it did hurt and offend a lot of people on both sides of the fence. It literally tapped on the most sensitive wounds in our democracy and frankly, everyone was just quick to take offense (again, on both sides of the fence).  It was indeed a time where almost everyone, was somewhat tested on how they perceive things in this country and virtually their loyalty questioned. I say this because as a young black woman who didn’t really take this issue to heart, I was somewhat perceived as insensitive. I know I have lost respect from some of my comrade friends. So this picture has not only increased racial tensions but also sows division among Africans themselves. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion because we all perceive things differently, that’s the beauty of being human. Yes I do believe that the picture was disrespectful and I wish it was never painted, but I also feel this whole thing has been blown out of proportion. A whole country cannot come to a standstill over one person offending another.

ANC called for the boycotting of the City Press, and copies of the paper were burned last week. They demanded the picture be taken down from the respective websites. They also took the matter to court and marched to the gallery. A white professor went into the gallery and painted an X over the painting’s face and genitals and another black guy smeared black paint over it. Both men were acting independently and didn’t know each other. In the midst of the turmoil, both races managed to find common ground, very heart warming, I must say. There is hope afterall.

So now the marches and court interdicts have been abandoned, the painting ruined and sold to a foreigner, how do we start picking up the pieces as a nation? A lot of underlying issues have come out in open and they need to be dealt with. The fact that we resorted to: boycotting, burning, banning, vandalizing and court orders to put a point across says a lot about conflict resolution strategies our leaders have. Is this the only way to fight our battles, really? These methods earned us our democracy, fighting the apartheid regime was hard required force. Now we have a democracy where everyone is equal and we are still using the same tactics to face our challenges. It’s like saying today’s youth lacks passion and is passive compared to the 1976 youth. But we are facing different challenges to the 1976 youth. We cannot be fighting Aids and unemployment with stones and burning tyres. Exactly, different battles require different weapons.

4000 ANC members (against an expected 15000) marched to the Goodman gallery for the removal of the damaged portrait and to basically put their point across. Are these very people not affected by the serious problems engulfing our country? Since they know they have a right to be heard and have rightfully exercised it, cant they do the same for their children’s future? I am just worried that the “masses” are only mobilized when it is suitable for certain interest groups. Malema’s hearing proved this theory of “rent a crowd” true. I have nothing against the March to the gallery because the ANC took offence and wanted to set the record straight. I just wish they could exercise the very same enthusiasm to real issues that are killing our nation. Or are people dumb enough to be told what to march for?

A 17 year old mentally ill girl was gang raped and the video went viral, no one marched. An 8 year girl was raped by a 15 year old boy and her eyes were gouged out, no one marched. Our sisters and brothers are caught in an education system that says it is okay for them NOT to know 70% of what they are taught,  a mere 30% is good enough for them to pass, no one marched. Some provinces are without school textbooks and it’s almost June, no one marched. Our Crime intelligence boss is being investigated for hideous crimes and still keeps his position, no one marched. Our country has one of the highest unemployment and HIV infection rates in the world, no one marched. Today, I saw a headline that a grade 3 pupil is pregnant, no one will march. I could go on and on, there is so much that we are struggling with as a nation and there are a lot of matters that require our urgent attention. My concern is that as a population we have our priorities wrong. When know how to stand up and be counted, but we don’t know for what exactly.

Out of this whole saga, the one thing that gave me the most anguish was that security guard who arrested the people who vandalized the painting. The black guy was man handled like he just robbed a bank while the white guy was being handcuffed carefully. They both vandalized the painting and should be treated equally. By equal, I mean equal respect. But then again it’s unfortunate that as a nation we are still failing to see each other as individuals but by our skin color. For me that particular scenario should be the starting point of opening debate on perceptions and feelings caused by this exhibition.

The President clearly understands that there are a lot of underlying issues and has called for an open debate. The debate is not to talk about that ugly picture, but to allow individuals to express their feelings that were stirred up by the commotion. What concerns came to mind and how to make things better. For this gesture, I really thank the president. He has looked pass the humiliation and turmoil, from which I believe his silence throughout that time was the best response.

Right now fighting about who is wrong and who is right will not get us anywhere. I cannot say Zuma is a victim nor can I say Freedom of speech (Brett Murray) is a victim, neither get my sympathy. For a long time I really wasn’t sure how to feel about the portrait, honestly because a part of me was offended and a part of me wasn’t. Again this is my opinion and you are entitled to yours. You may agree to some of the points I made above and you can disagree to some of them, trust me, you are not the only one. We all learn as we go, and as country we need to remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day, such hurdles are part of the growth process.

 “The uncomfortable bottom line is that South Africa is a white controlled-black country”- Jonathan Moyo. Your thoughts?

I love my family. But…

We all love our families and for those of us with siblings, we wish them every success in life as much as we do for ourselves. The reality though is that, not all of us will be blessed financially, intellectually and with equal wisdom within our families. So, you will work very hard to either finish school/varsity, or find employment or volunteer (with the hope to get employed) so you can make something of your life. Eventually you do find success and secure stable, decent income to start living your dreams.

Obviously once you’ve “made it” you will first go home and help out to make life better for the rest of the family. But what happens when everyone starts demanding that you HAVE to help out, and now all of a sudden people stop trying because they know you will help. They would not be making such demands explicitly, but you somehow feel the expectation and the burden growing. Remember, you have only just started working and perhaps you still want to study further, buy your own house, a car, get married or even just go on holiday. But then how do you prioritize those needs over the “expectations” at home. Yes you are willing to help as much as you can, but when will you then start helping you?

Here’s an extract written by a friend, who took an analysis on the importance of having limits to the sacrifices we make to our families. Here are her thoughts….

“Family seems to always be our first priority, we are constantly compromising ourselves to protect and support them. So when family emergencies come up, we make hasty decisions that we regret later.

I guess its so sad that instead of sleeping, I’m awake at this hour. And I need to be up in the next three hours for a hectic day at the office. Do I start a pity party and blame everyone and everything around me or do I just go back to bed and stop overreacting?

The selfishness I have to deal with on the regular just drains me. I hate the internal family battles, and unnecessary issues that arise. The constant pressure on me to be better than what I am to survive also takes away a lot of my peace. They all seem like petty things but they have such a major effect mentally.

Don’t get me wrong I have been blessed and yes every family has its own issues but if you come home and then all of a sudden lose your own peace of mind, it’s unhealthy. All because you felt at that time your family needed you most, it’s ok for peace to be lost. If this is the price you have to pay. I’m confused.

I need peace of mind. I want to be able to go home and relax. It is HOME after all. I want to feel like I have made the right decision to be here instead of on my own.

Oh here is the issue. WE ALWAYS DO FOR OTHERS WHAT WE KNOW IS NOT POSSIBLE AND MIGHT STRAIN US MENTALLY AND PHYSICALLY BUT DO IT ANYWAY.

We need to learn that:

  1. Your family needs you but their don’t own you
  2. Your don’t necessarily have to put your life on hold for anyone
  3. Support can be given from a distance
  4. Stop the pity parties and deal with the situation at hand
  5. Avoid making unrealistic commitments which might mean suffocating yourself
  6. When you help make sure you are not compromoside
  7. Share your ill feelings, discomfort with someone. It will make you feel better
  8. If you not happy change your situation
  9. Learn to say NO
  10. Learn to love and value your freedom and space.

Your family loves you irrespective, so its mind over matter”

By Zandra Habana

 Such powerful and yet true insights, hey. If only our families can realize if they give you space for a few years, you’d be able to grow yourself/ career enough to be able to over cater for any need. Just one thing I need to add to the advice Zandra gave:

  1. Remind yourself that you are a child, not a parent in the household!

Sometimes the responsibility bestowed upon you is overwhelming that you are left with sole responsibility to provide for the family. You should rightfully assume that responsibility when you have your own family. You cannot buy your family’s affection, they love you anyways.

I understand that some of us come from very different situations, where you might just be rejected or called selfish for giving less than what is expected. Those are painful, real situations we live in, unfortunately. But continue doing good regardless, because you are fortunate to have a family in the first place. Someone out there can only wish to have a sibling to fight with. Always, remember…

LOVE yourself, trust God and lean not in your own understanding.

 

PS: Zandra is the founder and President of Mokgotsi Women. Mokgotsi is empowerment initiative to help grow young professional women, financially, socially and spiritually. Go to www.mokgotsi.co.za

Don’t we all?

I don’t know who the narrator of this story is, but it is just too powerful not to share. Remember the story about the black and white dogs within us (Flesh vs Spirit)? Whichever one you feed the most, is the one that wins the battle. Let us feed our spirits…

 

One evening I was parked in front of the mall wiping off my car, I had just come from the car wash and was waiting for my wife to finish work. Coming my way from across the parking lot was what society would consider a bum. From the looks of him he had no car, no home, no clean clothes and no money.
There are times when you feel generous, but there are times that you just don’t want to be bothered. This was one of the Don’t-want-to-be-bothered times! “Hope he doesn’t ask me for money,” I thought.

 

He didn’t. He came and sat on the curb in front of the bus stop and he didn’t look like he could have enough money to even ride the bus. After a few minutes he spoke. “That’s a very nice car,” he said. He was ragged, but had an air of dignity around him. I said “Thanks,” and continued wiping off my car.
He sat there quietly as I worked. The expected plea for money never came. As the silence between us widened, something inside said, “Ask him if he needs any help.” I was sure that he would say yes, but I held true to the inner voice. “Do you need any help?” I asked. He answered in three simple, but profound, words that I shall never forget.

 

We often look for wisdom in great accomplishments. I expect it from those of higher learning and accomplishments. I expected nothing here but an outstretched grimy hand. Then, he spoke three words that shook me. “Don’t we all?” he said.

 

I needed help. Maybe not for bus fare or a place to sleep, but I needed help. I reached in my wallet and gave him not only enough for bus fare but enough to get a warm meal and shelter for the day.
Those three little words still ring true. No matter how much you have, no matter how much you have accomplished, you need help too. No matter how little you have, no matter how loaded you are with problems, even without money or a place to sleep, you can GIVE help. Even if it’s just a compliment, you can give that!

 

You never know when you may see someone that appears to have it all. They are waiting on you to give them what they don’t have. A different perspective on life, a glimpse of something beautiful, a respite from daily chaos that only you, through a torn world can see.  Maybe the man was just a homeless stranger wandering the streets. Maybe he was more than that. Maybe he was sent by a power that is great and wise to minister to a soul too comfortable in himself.  Maybe Someone looked down, called an Angel, dressed him like a bum and then said, “Go minister to that man cleaning the car, that man needs help.” – DON’T WE ALL?

 

Author Unknown

 

What do you need help with today? Being honest with yourself about who you and what your weaknesses are may just change your life. Some need monetary assistance and some spiritual. Regardless, we all need help somehow and we can all give it.

 

Be a little kinder and smile often. It doesn’t only look good on you, but it makes the world a brighter place.

 

 

My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong”.

 2 Corinthians vs 9-10

 

Sooooo Annoying

I’m sure all of us have a few things that annoy the living day light out of us. Not that you’re in a bad mood or anything, it’s just that you would rather not experience that act. It’s so funny that we are usually annoyed by things we cannot change, we are just victims, lol. When annoyed by something, just laugh about it, walk away and forget it ever happened. Little things should never steal your joy.  They make life as dynamic as it should be. Here are a few things that really annoy me, I hope you can relate with some of them.

  1. When you’re rushing to the coffee shop to buy coffee before you start work and there in front of you is a person buying coffee for their whole team. I mean really? 8 cups of coffee, all at once? At that moment you wish you can negotiate that they make your 1 cup of coffee and then they deal with his/her bulk order. But you can’t, you just have to wait. Cant people can’t come buy their own coffee? So annoying!
  2. You go to the movies, you get there nice and early and you have comfortably chosen your spot. You are digging into your pop corn and you’re slowly watching other people walk in and fill the place up. Just as the movie is about to start; the tallest person of all time decides to come sit in front of you. Eish, Girrafe man himself decides to show up, almost all the seats are full, the movie has just started and you were so comfortable in your seat. Moving will just be too much effort, you just have to sit and enjoy the added view in front of you. *Smh*
  3. Another thing that really annoys me to the n’th degree is a DJ who sings along to the song on radio. Are you serious dude? Please shut up and let the song play, we hear enough of your voice when you’re running competitions and talking about other’s people’s business. Leave the music alone; microphones are switched off for a reason. I promise you I have heard Glen Lewis do it, just as the song is about to end, he jumps in and hums along. Nigga please give us a break. This goes for all other Dj’s that do it. It really is so annoying, you don’t understand!
  4. Speaking of radio, there is no DJ that annoys me as T-Bo Touch (excuse the spelling). They way he speaks, the things he talks about and how he does things is absolutely annoying. I am still to meet a person who is impressed by that guy, it baffles me how Metro fm gave him a second term on that afternoon drive show. That American accent and name dropping (“I was with my man Akon in NYC”) is enough to make me boycott that radio station. Ok I can give them credit for the evening talk shows and deep house shows on the weekend. Mara Tboz yena wabhora, ubhora hooray!
  5. Another annoying item is ill disciplined kids, argh! I love children, don’t get me wrong, and I trust they love me too. I see them as little angels who only act out as they are taught. So I come to your house for a visit and your 6 year old is all over me, my cellphone, busy touching our food and changing the channels while we are talking. That is not AYOBA. In fact it is super annoying. What annoys me more is when the parent does not call their child to order. Now this kid is busy slapping my thighs and pulling my ears and you as a parent see nothing wrong. This topic should really be an article on its own. But parents make sure your kids are not a nuisance, it doesn’t matter if it’s at home or outside. It annoys the hell out of people who teach their kids manners or those who have none!
  6. So you walk into the Loo at work to do your very serious business and you happen to walk in at the same time as a colleague, from the other team. You say your hello’s and then go into your respective booths. Then the person starts talking to you from the other side. Really? How awkward. Can’t it wait until we finished our business? I’m not sure if people are even allowed to open their mouths in that place, who knows what kind of air you will swallow. Yuk. Plus toilet business is private business. Please go in, do your stuff, shut up and leave me in peace to do mine. We will see each other in the work space. Ours is a working relationship, not a private one. And can we all admit that talking while “doing it” totally disturbs the process and makes it less pleasurable. Vele! So annoying!
  7. This one day you decide to be a health nut and bring veggies to work. At lunch time you go warm up your food and when you get into the kitchen you are greeted by the smell of the richest mutton curry ever! This person is happily warming up their delicious curry that you can almost taste just by smelling it. Your turn comes and you put your boiled vegetables into the microwave and when you open it, guess what, that rich curry smell comes out still. How annoying! How are you supposed to look forward to eating your vegetables after being  while being reminded how good meat can be. People should warn us man!
  8. I don’t like carrying cash, for obvious reasons, I think electronic transactions are the future and I use that as often as I can. But there’s that one time when you have to withdraw a substantial amount of cash because you only have the option of making cash payment. You get to the ATM and you see a little picture of bank notes with little red stars at the top. This means that the machine does not have those notes and unfortunately for you only R20 notes are available and you need to withdraw R 500, yho! Such annoying trauma. Now your wallet thinks you’re rich and you have to do an awful lot of counting when you make your payment. ZERO!
  9. Writing in the “book of truth” annoys so many things out of me I could scream. I know it’s a security “measure”. Security guards make sure you fill out all the details accurately and you sign at the right place. Some even request ID and if you don’t have, you won’t be allowed entrance. I understand the crime dynamic in this country, but I just wish someone can invent a better method of implementing this security measure. How are they guaranteed that everyone writes the correct details?
  10. My biggest annoyance ever is self imposed really. You know those times you wake up in the middle of the night and you check your phone quickly to see how many more hours of sleep you have before you wake up. You do this half asleep and looking forward to going back and enjoy your sleep with the added hours. You check the time, only to realize that it is actually 7mins before your alarm clock goes off. Sooooo anonoying!

I trust you enjoyed and related to some of the annoyances. I am not being a snob or anything, but we all have different levels of tolerance for different things and what annoys me, might not necessarily annoy you.  Please feel free to share some of the things that annoy you as well, we won’t judge again, if something annoys you, avoid it. If you can’t, laugh it off and forget about it.

 

Don’t take life too seriously; no one gets out alive anyway”

        

What does it mean to you?

There was a man who had 2 dogs (one black, the other white) and he had these on 2 separate chains. When feeding time came, the owner would unleash the black dog to go and eat as much as it can and then as soon as it’s almost finished the food, the white dog was unleashed to go eat. Poor white dog will scramble for whatever is left while it’s still being intimidated by the black one. When the owner now puts these dogs to fight, obviously the black dog will win because it is much stronger. These 2 dogs signify who we are, the black dog is your flesh and the white dog is you spirit. More often than not we do things that feel “comfortable” and “fun” even though we know they’re wrong “for the good I will to do I do not do, but the evil I will not to do I practice” Romans 8vs 19. So you see these 2 dogs are at war with each other and the black one wins most of the time because it is well fed. That’s why you find that when people are pop-dronk, they start singing hymms and church songs, this is because the spirit sees that the body is now weak and cannot fight against it, so it also tries to feed itself by worshiping its creator.

 You need to feed the spirit with God’s word and to eat off the spirit, you need to be born off it. So dear friends you are either, here or there. It’s either you are with God or not (which is against him). Remember that darkness does not exist, yes there’s so such thing as darkness. A place with no light is in darkness, therefore darkness only exists because there is no light. And Christ said “I am the way, the truth and the light, and no one will come to the Father except through me”.  We celebrate Easter; to accept and commemorate the grace that God has granted us through Jesus since He loves us so much. Actually he’s a very cool God, see how he gave you 5 day’s leave in the middle of the year through his grace in Christ Jesus. Love Him 🙂

John 3, gives a clear illustration of darkness and light. It gives an understanding of what it means to live in the spirit and living in the flesh. For the white dog (spirit) to be strong and grow, it needs to be the primary pet in this household. You need to be born off the spirit to live in the spirit, for human flesh cannot comprehend nor handle the things of the spirit. Let’s read the words of Jesus:

There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”

3 Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

4 Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”

5 Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

9 Nicodemus answered and said to Him, “How can these things be?”

10 Jesus answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things? 11 Most assuredly, I say to you, We speak what We know and testify what We have seen, and you do not receive Our witness. 12 If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things? 13 No one has ascended to heaven but He who came down from heaven, that is, the Son of Man who is in heaven. 14 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, 15 that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

Walking in the light, means accepting and doing all things through God and we can only experience light if we accept the light of the world who came to reveal the Father to us. Jesus, brought a pinch of heaven to earth when He was here. Heaven is calm, peaceful, full of trust, light, hope, love and most importantly it is where God resides. Jesus taught us how to relate with God and experience the fullness of His love. He did not come to remind us how evil we are, instead He gave us an understanding that our very nature is sinful and we need to be born off the spirit for us to walk in wholeness and be one with the spirit of God.

If you say Christ is not the son of God and He did not come to redeem the human race, what makes you think what you believe will be bring you closer to God? Do you feel close to him right now? How do you know  what you have to do to stay there? You see being born again, means being born off the spirit which is one with God’s spirit. The Holy Spirit (which Christ left with us when He went up to heaven) teaches us all things and guides us in all our ways. It intercedes on our behalf and gives us discernment. God did not give up His son to condemn, but to redeem and if you reject the light then it means your darkness is just bright enough for you and you do not wish for a brighter light to shine in your darkest places. (Luke 3 vs 16) “John answered, saying to all, “I indeed baptize you with water; but One mightier than I is coming, whose sandal strap I am not worthy to loose. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” John was speaking about Jesus, so we do need Jesus in our lives so we can receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

I bear testimony that in all the wisdom I thought I had, I could never feel the peace I now know since I am in Christ. There is a wholeness that comes with being born again. The words from God’s mouth fill me with even more life and I thank Him for making a way out for me out of the darkness. I believe Jesus Christ is the light of the world as He brought me light. If the miracle of the cross did not happen, I really don’t know where I would be. My heart would be fixed on the things of this earth, which will soon pass away. But Jesus came and told us the truth and taught us what really matters in life. Yes He knows because He was here before the earth was and will be there after it passes away, and guess, what? We will all be there to share eternity with Him; Only if we believe.

All these things were revealed to me by the Lord, only He opens our spiritual ears that we may hear and understand the things of the spirit. If you are unsure about anything, just kneel down and pray. Ask Him all you need to know and He will be faithful to answer. God takes delight when we enquire about His ways, He sees your yearning for truth and will honor it. As you draw close to Him, He will draw closer to you. And you don’t need to change anything in your life before you do, because Salvation is not about Perfection, but Transformation (Romans 12 vs 2).

Have a safe break and do take time to remember why Easter is celebrated. This time is not about you, but God, in fact everything is for His glory, but that’s a story for another day. Remember that He loved you enough to die for you and I also love you very much that is why I wish for you to share in the joy and hope that is in me.

 I am grateful for Easter, because it has granted me a personal relationship with my Creator, who gives purpose to my life, sustains me, provides for me, forgives, loves and protects me (Jeremiah 29vs11). What does it mean to you?

PS: Feel free to drop me a mail on Noluthando@1635media.co.za  should you need further guidance.