Wednesday, December 1, 2004

Did you know (4).....

To The Saints !!!!!

Centuries ago guys like Johannes Kepler (17th Century) and William Herschel(18th Century) thought that the moon supported life. Kepler even wrote a book about the moon people in which he fantasized about how their lives might be.
As scientific knowledge grew, dreams of finding lunar civilizations dissipated. Everyone came to agree that the moon cannot support life. Yet surprising discoveries in recent years have shown the opposite to be true: the moon really does support life - ours! Scientific evidence confirms how this parched, airless satellite actually contributes in unexpected ways to creating a lush and stable environment a quarter of a million miles away on Earth.
A discovery recently made in 1993 found that the moon actually stabilizes the tilt of the Earth's axis. The tilt is responsible for our seasons. During summer, in the northern hemisphere the north pole axis is pointed towards the sun. Six months later, when the Earth is on the other side of the sun, then the south pole is more pointed towards the sun. With the Earth's tilt at 23.5 degrees, this gives us very mild seasons. So in a very real way, the stability of our climate is attributable to the moon.
If the moon was not there then the tilt of the Earth's axis could swing wildly over a large range, resulting in major temperature swings. If our tilt were more like ninety degrees, the north pole would be exposed to the sun for six months while the south pole would be in darkness and vice versa. Instead , it [our tilt] varies by only about one and a half degrees - just a tiny variation, because the gravity from the moon's orbit keeps it stabilized.
The moon's large size compared to its host planet is unique in the inner solar system. Mercury and Venus have no moons. Mars has two tiny moons - probably captured asteroids - and they don't do anything to stabilize the axis of Mars. In fact, all three of these planets have chaotic variations in their tilt.
The moon also helps in another crucial way, which is to increase our tides. The moon contributes sixty percent to the tides; the sun accounts for the other forty percent. Tides serve an important role by flushing out nutrients from the continents to the oceans, which keeps them more nutrient-rich than they otherwise would be. Scientists discovered just a few years ago that the lunar tides also help to keep large-scale ocean circulation going. That's important because the oceans carry a lot of heat, which is necessary to keep the temperature of the higher latitudes relatively mild.
If the moon was larger and still in the same place, the tides would be way too strong which would create serious difficulties. The tides slow down the Earth a little and at the same time the moon moves out in its orbit. If the moon were bigger, it would slow down the Earth much more. That would be a problem because if the days became too long, then you could have major temperature differences between day and night.
Isn't it amazing that the moon "just happens" to be the right size and in the right place to help create a habitable environment for Earth. Do we really know what a BIG GOD we serve?

Would it not be strange if a universe without purpose accidentally created humans who are so obsessed with purpose? (Sir John Templeton)

Info taken from The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel (2004)

I have felt the wind blow
Whispering Your name
I have seen Your tears fall
When I watch the rain

How could I say there is no God
When all around creation calls
A singing bird a mighty tree
The vast expanse of open sea

Gazing at a bird in flight
Soaring through the air
Lying down beneath the stars
I feel Your presence there

I love to stand at ocean's shore
And feel the thundering breakers roar
To walk through golden fields of grain
'Neath endless blue horizon's frame

Listening to a river run
Watering the earth
Fragrance of a rose in bloom
A newborn's cry at birth

I believe
I believe
I believe
(Creation Calls by Brian Doerksen)


Friday, November 26, 2004

A little beautiful thing....

To You The Precious Saints !!!!

Wednesday afternoon when I got off the bus and was starting to walk home kinda day dreaming a bit. I suddenly noticed this young woman running like crazy to catch the bus I just got off. My instant thought was "Hey you dummy (meaning me not her), if you had been more observant you could have asked the bus driver to wait" and then I would have been able to add another notch to my halo. Suddenly I got this feeling to stop. I felt that I knew exactly what was going to happen next. So I waited and watched.
Whoosh the young woman dashed past me with a look of anguish on her face, nope she wasn't going to make it. Sure enough the bus virtually disappeared in a smelly, belching cloud of black smoke as it started off. She didn't make it. She was desperate, she just keep right on running. Well it was a no contest. But meanwhile at the stop street where I was standing a woman was waiting in her car to cross the busy main road. She was in the right hand lane to turn right with her indicator on. She was also watching proceedings and suddenly there was no traffic and she cut across the left hand lane and turned left and rode after the young woman, hooted to draw her attention and then picked her up and had a dice with the bus and dropped her off at the next bus stop ahead of the bus.
For me it was just such a thing of beauty of reflecting God's glory, His grace mercy and love.
I started thinking of when Elijah was standing on the mountain before the Lord. A mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was a mighty earthquake but the Lord was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was a gentle whisper, when Elijah heard it he went out and the Lord said "What are you doing here, Elijah?" (Beautiful passage in 1 Kings 19:9-18)
I felt that that's what God was saying to me through this woman's actions in such a gentle whisper "What are you doing here, Raymond? Can you see what I'm showing you? How to reflect my glory. Take in what I've shown you"
So precious saints never stop doing good in this world, look and listen for God's whisper, by you obeying His whisper He'll be using you and your actions to whisper into someone else's life.

Marvellous Light

Lead us out of darkness and into your marvellous light

When we wander into valleys far from home
Where shadows hover over our souls
Find us in Your mercy
Saviour of the world

You are the light of the world
(Jesus is the light)
You are the way the truth and the life
(You are the life)
You are the light of the world
(Jesus is the light)
Lead us out of darkness
And into Your marvellous light

Sanctify our spirits
Purify our minds
As we look to You, eyes open wide
Give us understanding
Set our hearts on fire

Give us understanding
Set our hearts on fire
Fill us with desire

Your are the light of the world....... precious Jesus
(by Steve Hindalong)

Jesus said to the people, "I am the light of the world. If you follow me, you won't be stumbling through the darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life." (John 8:12)
LoCTY !!!!!!!

Thursday, November 11, 2004

Did You Know(3)

To The Precious Saints !!!!!

What is it about our solar system that contributes to life on Earth?

More and more astronomers are learning how the other planets tie into the habitability of Earth. For example, George Wetherill of the Carnegie Institution showed in 1994 that Jupiter - which is huge, more than three hundred times the mass of the earth - acts as a huge shield to protect us from too many comet impacts. It actually deflects comets and keeps many of them from coming into the inner solar system, where they could collide with Earth with life-extinguishing consequences.
This was illustrated very nicely by the impact of Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 into Jupiter in July,1994. This comet was attracted by Jupiter's tremendous gravitational pull and broke into fragments, with all of them hitting Jupiter. Likewise Saturn and Uranus also participate in that kind of comet-catching.
In addition, the other planets in our inner solar system protect us from getting bombarded by asteroids from the asteroid belt. The asteroids are mostly between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Our first line of defence is Mars, being at the edge of the asteroid belt . It takes a lot of hits for us. Venus does do.
Can you imagine these planets acting like big brothers, loving protectors putting their 'bodies' on the line to protect the life that is on this planet Earth. Does not that remind you of someone?
More on Gods awesome creation to follow, watch your mail.

Info taken from The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel (2004)

The River

To the river I am going
Bringing sins I cannot bear
Come and cleanse me come forgive me
Lord I need to meet You there

In these waters healing mercy
Flows with freedom from despair
I am going to that river
Lord I need to meet You there

Precious Jesus I am ready
To surrender every care
Take my hand now lead me closer
Lord I need to meet You there

Come join us in the river
Come find life beyond compare
He is calling He is waiting
Jesus longs to meet you there
(Brian Doerksen, Michael Hansen & Brian Thiessen)

LoCTY !!!!!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2004

Street Evangelism (2)

This year we started doing street evangelism. John Lawton, Clint Gibson and myself (Raymond White). That is the team!
The broad (and very flexible) plan was to go out on the street every other weekend on a Saturday or Friday evening alternating between ministry work at the soup kitchen and walking up Voortrekker Road (using the soup kitchen location as a starting point) up to Vasco station on one side of Voortrekker Road and then back down to the soup kitchen location on the opposite side of Voortrekker Road, just basically talking to people about the Gospel and handing out tracts. Unfortunately the team never got big enough to do both street work and effective ministry at the soup kitchen so we concentrated on the ‘sowing of tracts’ up and down Voortrekker Road. Doing this kind of thing leaves one with a whole lot of snapshots of life.

The first time we did this was on the 24 January 2004. We opened in prayer and asked God for His protection and for His Spirit to go before us, we also asked for divinely appointed encounters. We started off at about 7.30pm. We spoke to roughly 100 people and handed out about 70 tracts (The Way to God, in English). We had some incredible meetings and chats with some people, many of the people had had a few drinks and were rushing off to go to another ‘jol’. There were very few people who outright rejected our ‘free’ offer (about three or four) and we were amazed and stunned at how some people just opened up to us. Quite a few of them asked us if we were Jehovah’s Witnesses and when we replied that we were not and explained who we were and where we were from they immediately became more relaxed with us.
This became roughly the pattern for subsequent ‘outings’ on the street on the following weekends. Clint joined us during the year and then John was not able to continue with us.

Here are some snapshots for you.
Taking home a young mother who was hitchhiking to Summer Greens, we had previously, briefly met her on the street. Giving her supper (burgers) and then helping her to reconcile with her own mother and giving her a lift back home again. We finished at 11pm that night.
Being treated to a song and dance routine by some ladies who were celebrating a birthday.
Praying for an elderly man who had lost everything and had also been rejected by his family.
Many a night the first person that we spoke to told us that what we were doing was so important. Like the well-dressed dude who was on his way to Grandwest who told us his favourite Bible story in a very colourful and entertaining way.
Coming across a wedding reception and congratulating and blessing the bride and the family.
Pushing a Muslims car out of the traffic after it had broken down, yea Jesus died for you too!
The many Christians that we met who were encouraged by what we were doing and in turn encouraged us. Just imagine if you can, having a discussion on eschatology on a street corner in a howling south-easter.
The prostitute who answered me when I offered her a tract that it was too dark too read, I said she could read it later, she then countered that she did not have anywhere to keep it. Taking one look at her I knew then to give up.
Chatting to the ladies at the Laundromat and leaving a couple of tracts there after they had asked us.
Praying for a lady and she in turn asked if she could pray for us. She then proceeded to knock our socks off with prayer of such passion and power, wow goose bump stuff.

We don’t force ourselves on anybody, we don’t chase after people, no preaching, we give everyone the option of saying no to the tracts and we say it’s for free. When we mention the word free this often gets peoples attention.
This has been a really exhilarating experience for John, Clint and myself, we just step out in faith on a Friday or Saturday night and we know that it is God who is doing the work, Christ the redeemer is calling the lost, His Holy Spirit works through us and touches complete strangers. All we do is try our best to listen and be obedient to His Spirit within us. We are so grateful for this opportunity to do His will. We can only encourage you to join us.


Thursday, October 28, 2004

The Curtain is Torn Forever

Hi You Precious Saints !!!!

When Christ died on the cross for you the curtain in the temple was torn in two from top to bottom(Matthew 27:51). This meant that in future whoever confessed that Jesus is their Saviour and Lord could approach God in the holy of holies by using the name of Jesus Christ. However our God loves us so much that he looks right into our hearts and sees the yearning there and He constantly reaches out to us.
Yesterday morning(Wednesday) I was walking to the bus stop, the morning had been so poignant and it was like I was seeing everything for the first time, my home, my family all gifts from God, they really all belong to Him, as I do. God's grace just washed over me and I started crying. When I got to the bus stop there was a woman standing there she looked at me but mebbe she thought the strong south-easter wind was making my eyes water.
I sat next to one of God's children on the bus and there was another one sitting across from me. We just shared what we were reading and we praised and worshipped God(no we did not sing! ). When I got to work I opened my lunch box and Matthew, my 7 year old son, had put a little note in there for me. It was a drawing of Jesus on the cross and he had written below it ' Jesus Loves Forever' ,wow gotta find somewhere to put my face.
At lunch time we had our work fellowship meeting. On my way walking there I had just spoke to God and said that I really want to worship Him today and that I hope that Craig will bring his guitar. And that's what happened. He also brought two big flags as well and gave me one. So I had a ball waving this big gold flag around as we worshipped. We also shared the way His Spirit is working in our lives. His Spirit just took over and we prayed and ministered to each other and man I just waved that flag. It felt really good.
This morning (Thursday) everything goes kinda wrong from the moment I wake up. Have you had one of those mornings, good (?!!!) , then I don't feel so bad. One of the buses on our route broke down (should change their name from Golden Arrow to Broken Arrow). So all the buses that came past were full (standing room only). I then eventually got on a bus with the worst possible driver (he has various nicknames Cowboy, Knight Rider etc you can imagine why) if you have to stand all the way to town. So it was really a 'ruk en rol' jive drive all the way to Cape Town. And just so I could savour the moment for as long as possible a truck jack knifed on the N1 causing a huge traffic snarly. Hey Pete I read your email this morning so true.
But you know what? That's life. I know there are many of you out there going through far worse things then having a bad bus day, but know this, nothing changes the truth of the matter that Christ died for you and the curtain remains torn and sometimes all we can to is hang on and trust Him and that He gives us the strength to overcome all things.

Nothing But The Blood

Your blood speaks a better word
Then all the empty claims I've heard upon this earth
Speaks righteousness for me
And stands in my defence
Jesus, It's Your blood

What can wash away our sins?
What can make us whole again?
Nothing but the blood
Nothing but the blood of Jesus
What can wash us pure as snow
Welcomed as the friends of God?
Nothing but Your blood
Nothing but Your blood Jesus, King Jesus

Your cross testifies in grace
Tells of the Father's heart to make a way for us
Now boldly we approach
Not earthly confidence
It's only by Your blood

We praise You for the blood
We are ......
Made Holy
All by your blood, King Jesus
(Matt Redman. Chorus inspiration: Nothing But The Blood by Robert Lowry 1876)

So if Satan the accuser is screaming lies in your face today, if your sin has made you fall, if the world's sin has smashed into your life, just remember Jesus is the way the truth and the life (John 14:6). Jesus never said that the road would be easy with no traffic snarlys and only luxury Greyhound buses.

LoCTY !!!!!!!!!

PS When we face up to the glory of God, we find ourselves face down in worship.(Matt Redman)

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Last Night...Maximen

Hi My Brothers in Christ !!!!

Yea last night it was good to abide in Christ. It really takes a real man to cry. We are just so tuned by the world not to show weakness and if a man cries this is made out to be a weakness. But it really is a strength that we receive from His Holy Spirit. What sharing, what straight talking WOW !!!
This did not stop as we left. The four of us in the car spoke about God and our weaknesses all the way home. Craig and Johan (Naude) are in a similar 'place' right now both looking for jobs and desperate for God to guide them. Clint and myself spoke about our weaknesses as husbands and fathers and where we fall short of serving our Lord. We dropped off Craig and then drove to my place. While parked in my driveway Clint and myself prayed for Johan. Phew it was powerful stuff, our voices cracked and we had tears in our eyes and Johan was crying. He (Johan) then prayed to our Father and then asked us to pray for the infilling of His Holy Spirit. Man.... God's presence in that car was heavy, I had stretched my right hand out to Johan and I could feel it tingling, I have not felt that in a long time. It was just awesome. God's anointing & blessings just continued as I walked into the house everything was done sandwiches made, dishes done, ironing done, Adam had fixed his PC by himself. I mention these 'little' things because they can sometimes rob you of a blessing and often before I open my front door and walk in I say a little prayer which goes something like this ' Jesus no matter what, I will worship you through everything, even if its doing the dishes at 11pm.'
This morning I opened up my sandwich box and Matthew had written a little note for me which read like this ' I love you very much daddy, Matthew and Mom.

Donny I got your other emails at 7.20pm last night. Read them this morning, thanks bud.

Clint and myself are thinking about doing a mobile prayer chapel, still thinking of a name mebbe Spiritual Meals on Wheels. Any further suggestions ?

Clint (G) and myself are going to hand out some tracts on Friday night from about 7pm on Voortrekker Road. If you want to step out in faith with us you are more than welcome. Just contact me, my home number is 558 0521, work no. below.

And now God is building you, as living stones into His spiritual temple. Whats more you are God's holy priests, who offer the spiritual sacrifices that please Him because of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 2:5)

LoCTY !!!!!!

Friday, October 22, 2004

Did You Know (2)

To The Saints !!!!!

Obviously the key (from a scientific viewpoint) to continued life on Earth is the sun, whose nuclear fusion, taking place at twenty-seven million degrees Fahrenheit at its core, provides us with a consistent warmth and energy 93 million miles away. If the distance between the earth and the sun was adjusted by 5% either way human and animal life would be impossible because the mix of carbon dioxide and oxygen would not be able to sustain it.
Our sun is pretty special. For instance its among the 10% most massive stars in the universe. In fact if you pick a star at random, you're likely to pick one that's far less massive than our sun, usually red dwarfs, which make up about 80% of stars. Another 8 or 9 percent are called G dwarfs, most of which are less massive than the sun. The sun is a yellow dwarf ; technically, it has a G2 spectral type. So we can see that yellow G2 dwarfs like our sun help account for the balance, between 1 and 2 percent, of all stars (this 1 to 2 percent also consists of other types of stars some of which are more massive than the sun).
Lets take a look at red dwarfs quickly since they make up the majority of stars in the universe. These are not very conducive to having life-bearing planets orbiting them. There are several reasons for this. First red dwarfs emit most of their radiation in the red part of the spectrum, which makes photosynthesis less efficient. A greater problem though is that as you decrease the mass of a star, you also decrease its luminosity. A planet would have to orbit this kind of star much closer in order to have sufficient heat to maintain liquid water on its surface. This then results in the problem that the tidal force between the star and the planet gets stronger as you move in, so the planet will spin down and eventually end up in what's called a tidally locked state. This means it always presents the same face towards the star. This is very bad (major understatement) because it causes huge temperature differences between the lit side and the unlit side. The lit side would be terribly dry and hot while the unlit side would be prohibitively icy and cold.
Now back to our sun (aren't you warming up more to it?). Fortunately our sun is not only the right mass, it also emits the right colours (a balance of red and blue). If the Earth was orbiting a more massive star, say an F dwarf, there would be much more blue radiation that would build up the oxygen and ozone layer very fast. Any imbalance in the ozone layer would subject the planet to an immediate flood of highly intense ultra-violet radiation, which would be disastrous to life.
The sun is also metal-rich; in other words it has a higher abundance of heavy elements compared to other stars of its age in this region of the galaxy and surprise surprise the sun's metallicity may be near the golden mean for building Earth size habitable terrestrial planets. The sun is also highly stable, more so than most comparable stars. Its light output only varies by one-tenth of one percent over a full sunspot cycle, which is about eleven years. This prevents wild climate swings on Earth. As mentioned in the previous mail the sun's orbit is more nearly circular than other comparable stars in our galaxy and this keeps it away from the dangerous spiral arms in our galaxy.
So our star the sun has some pretty amazing properties - just the right mass, the right distance, the right light, the right composition, the right orbit, the right galaxy, the right location, the right stability - to nurture living organisms on a circling planet. Pretty allright don't you think. Now what do you think the chance of all this just kinda happening on this grand a scale.
Is not our God just awesome. More of His glory to follow just watch your mail.

Info taken from The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel (2004)

Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me, if you know so much. Do you know how its dimensions were determined and who did the surveying? What supports its foundations and who laid its cornerstone as the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy? (Job 38:4-7)

I believe in God the Father
Almighty Maker of Heaven and Maker of Earth
And in Jesus Christ His only begotten Son, our Lord
He was conceived by the Holy Spirit
Born of the virgin Mary
Suffered by Pontius Pilate
He was crucified dead and buried

And I believe what I believe is what makes me what I am
I did not make it, no it is making me
It is the truth of God and not the invention of any man

I believe that He who suffered was crucified, buried and dead
He descended into hell and on the third day, He rose again
He ascended into heaven where He sits at God's mighty right hand
I believe that He's returning
To judge the quick and the dead of the sons of men

Oh yeah I believe it
(Creed by Rich Mullins)

LoCTY !!!!!!

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Did You Know

To The Saints!!!!!

There are three types of galaxies that have been discovered in the universe so far, these are elliptical, spiral and irregular. Of these three types of galaxies the one most suited for supporting life is the spiral galaxy. So guess what? Our galaxy (The Milky Way) just happens to be a spiral galaxy. These are dominated by a central spherical bulge and a disk with spiral arms extending outward from the nucleus in a spiral pattern, resembling a celestial pinwheel. The spiral arms of our galaxy are dangerous places where you would find exploding stars(supernovae) and hazardous giant molecular clouds and all sorts of other lethal activities. Earth is situated safely between the Sagittarius and Persues spiral arms.
Also we're very far from the nucleus of our galaxy, which is also a dangerous place. We now know that there's a massive black hole at the centre of our galaxy. In fact, the Hubble telescope has found that nearly every large nearby galaxy has a giant black hole at its nucleus and these are very dangerous things. You also have more supernovae exploding in that central part of the galaxy. Not a nice place to be!
Then you get the outer part of our spiral galaxy where star formation has been going on much more slowly over the years so the abundance of heavy elements isn't quite so high. Consequently these outer regions of the galaxy are less likely to have planets that support life or to be life supporting at all..
You guessed it we're in the middle of our galaxy!
Also the thin disk of our galaxy helps our sun to stay in its desirable circular orbit. A very eccentric orbit could cause it to cross spiral arms and visit the dangerous inner regions of the galaxy, but being circular it remains in the safe zone.
Awesome stuff eh!!!!!

More examples of God's glory will follow just watch your mailbox.

Info taken from The Case for a Creator by Lee Strobel (2004)

From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities - his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God. (Romans 1:20)

God Of Wonders - Third Day

Lord of all creation of water, earth and sky
The heavens are your tabernacle
Glory to the Lord on high

God of wonders
Beyond our galaxy
You are holy, holy
The universe declares your majesty
You are holy, holy
Lord of Heaven and Earth
Lord of Heaven and Earth

Early in the morning
I will celebrate the light
And as I stumble in the darkness
I will call your name by night

Hallelujah, to the Lord of Heaven and Earth
Hallelujah, to the Lord of Heaven and Earth
Hallelujah, to the Lord of Heaven and Earth

God of wonders
Beyond our galaxy
You are holy, holy
Precious Lord, reveal your heart to me
Father, holy, holy
The universe declares your majesty
You are holy, yes you are
Lord you are
Jesus is holy

Hallelujah, to the Lord of Heaven and Earth......

(This live version by Third Day with Micheal Tait)

This video version with Caedemon's Call

God of Wonders - Third Day

LoCTY !!!!!!!!!

Monday, October 18, 2004

Please take from me...

To You The Precious Saints !!!!!!!

Know this day how worthy you are. You were bought with the very life blood of Jesus Christ, God came down here to earth to die for you, just so He could have a loving relationship with you.

Every morning during the week (Mon to Fri) I wake up my son Matthew (aged 7) for school. Before I get him out of bed I get his chair ready and dish up his cereal. I then go wake him up. He is just like a big floppy doll as he flops into my arms (trusting me so completely) and I can feel his warm body against mine, feel his breath in my ear, smell his unique smell and then I carry him through and place him as gently as I can on his chair. I then go and fetch his Shrek or Spiderman blankie and he wraps himself up in it from head to toe (I call him Eskimoses). Always just before I wake Mattie up I look down on this incredible miracle that God has blessed us with (sleeping so angelically) and my heart just wants to crack. I wish that I could just leave him there to sleep but I know no matter how tough his day is gonna be it is better that I wake him. Before I leave for work I always whisper in his ear that Jesus loves him and that I love him and he nods his head in agreement.
And this is how our Father and our Saviour Jesus is with us all. His heart just wants to crack when every day he sends us out into this sick and dying world full of sin and corruption, He sees the knocks and hurts we take but He wants us to shine His grace,mercy and love to this world of His which denies the Saviour and Creator. And this is eternally good for us.
So if you have ever woken up in the small hours of the morning in a complete panic (over big things or small or a combo of both) and you toss and turn and dread the approach of the time you actually have to get out of bed and you would rather just curl up in a ball and be left alone, mebbe just for today. Then you get this huge guilt trip because the question screams in your mind ' Wot kinda Kristian R U'. Who the heck am I? And you feel so ashamed and you want to hide from Jesus but you know you can't. Sometimes all we manage to do is hold on in quiet desperation to Jesus our Saviour and just pray (minute by minute) that He gets us through the day. Sometimes you get to work and some cheery Christian beams at you and proclaims 'This is the day the Lord has made be thankful, rejoice and be glad', and you feel like belting them over the head with your coffee cup (yeah the truth hurts). Never feel alone when you feel like this, don't expect major easy to see miracles but He is all around you teaching you everyday down to the smallest detail and He won't let you go.
Last night Allie and myself ministered to beautiful gifted sister who is struggling and while Allie was praying His Holy Spirit was just playing this song over and over in my head.

How many times have I turned away
The number is the same as the sand on the shore
Every time You've taken me back
And now I pray You'll do it once more

Please take from me my life
When I don't have the strength
To give it away to You
Please take from me my life
When I don't have the strength
To give it away to You, Jesus

How many times have I gone astray
The number is the same as the stars in the sky
Every time You've taken me back
And I pray You'll do it again
(Take My Life by Third Day)

Paul tells us this; And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from His love. Death can't and life can't. The angels can't, and the demons can't. Our fears for today, our worries about tomorrow, and even the powers of hell can't keep God's love away. Whether we are high above the sky or in the deepest ocean, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord ( Romans 8: 38&39)

May You All Abide With Him Today


Wednesday, October 13, 2004

How Great Thou Art

To The Saints !!!

Dean came to take our ole faithful Mazda(Stanley) away this past Saturday to see if he can sell it. It was rather whimsically that I stood in our driveway and waved goodbye to Stanley. So many memories are tied to that car. Stanley certainly motivated me to pray a lot, both while driving along in him and also many a night when I would apologise to God for praying over our 'bucket of bolts' yet again as he stood in our driveway often with some sort of mysterious ailment(mysterious to me that is).
The latest memory that he left us with was last week Wednesday when we drove home from Parklands while it was pouring with rain. It was a real storm. Visibility was not very good and it was a lot worse from inside Stanley(wot's a demister?!!). When we turned the corner onto Koeberg road the wind hit us at a different angle which caused the windscreen wipers to go too far to the one side and then get stuck, Allie had to keep on pushing them back. Val (Allie's sister, who is a nun) suggested to me that we should pray. I was already having a serious monologue with God at the time but I sure could use all the help I could get. So Val started singing How Great Thou Art and listening to the words kinda just put everything in the right perspective as we drove home in our leaky spluttery car with our singing nun and you really really got the feeling of how close God can be to us, so close he is right inside . And you know He is there all the time and He will never ever leave us(Hebrews 13:5&6). But that is the promise written in His word.

How Great Thou Art by Aled Jones

O Lord my God! When I in awesome wonder
Consider all the works Thy hands have made
I see the stars , I hear the mighty thunder
Thy power throughout the universe displayed

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God to Thee;
How great Thou art! How great Thou art!
Then sings my soul, my Saviour God to Thee;
How great Thou art! How great Thou art!

And when I think that God, His son not sparing
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing
He bled and died to take away my sin.........

When Christ shall come with shout of acclamation
And take me home, what joy will fill my heart!
Then I shall bow in humble adoration
And there proclaim, my God how great Thou art!
(How Great Thy Art.... you can sing along and praise Him)

LoCTY !!!!!!!!

Monday, October 11, 2004

Prayer Update

To The Saints !!!!

Maybe some of you can remember about a month or so ago Allie used up all her call time to SMS many of you to support us in prayer about purchasing a newer car.
A colleague of hers(Lesley) had decided to go back to her family in Scotland(don't know why yet), the car in question was given to Lesley as a present in 1996 by the parents of her former fiancée. You can make your own deductions about all these 'coincidences'(I just love em).
When Allie told me about the car, a Ford Tracer 1600, 1996 model, one owner with 85,000 k's on the clock at a going price of R26,000 my immediate thought was yeah right so the money is just kinda going to fall from the sky.
What to do? Just ask Jesus. So we did and guess what? We took ownership of the car this past Friday. When I got home this past Friday evening I just went to go look at it and then sit in it and just marvel at how God worked in our lives to bless us. I was like a little boy in candy store,(sorta gratefully bemused) checking out all the things that worked. I mean the windscreen wipers worked and did not get stuck, you could push a button and water would spray on the windows(incredible, we normally had to wait till it rained) and so on. Okay I know all you guys with your Beemers, Mercs, Renos et al are probably saying so what but when you have driven by faith for so long its quite a step up in the mechanical world.
I just want to thank you all for your prayers and a special thank you to those of you who actually came forward and answered some of our prayers. And to think all of this all and all of who we are would not be possible if it were not for Jesus Christ! All Glory to God!!!!

Would you believe me if I said.....
That we are the ones who can make the change
In the world today...
Would you believe me if I said.....
That all of of the dreams in your heart
Can come true .... Today
Would you believe me if I said....
That life could be all that you want it to be.... Today

And if I had wings I would fly
'Cause all that I need you are
And if the world caved in around me
To you I'd still hold on
'Cause you're all that I believe
And the one that created me
JESUS because of you... I'M FREE...

Just live your life ...with GOD inside
You won't regret one moment of it...
And give it all that you can FOR GOD.
(Free. Marty Sampson/Hillsong)


PS Many more things(good and bad) actually happened in this last month or so and we have received so many blessings that I could write a book about it. I'll spare you guys though(for now!).

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

Jesus' Blood Never Fails Me

To The Precious Saints !!!!!!

Today and forever just remember you were all bought by the death and blood of Jesus Christ.

How does one put into words the way Christ and His Spirit does a continuous work in our lives, how he provides for us each and every day, how He builds and strengthens our faith which is far more precious than gold.

This past Sunday morning alarm goes off. Oh no what time is it? 6.30am do I really have to get up, I mean will anyone miss me, most of my guys in my Sunday school class will be on youth Alpha anyway, some more excuses flash through my mind but eventually I get up(heavy conviction by His Spirit) and wake everyone else up.
Eventually we all clamber into 'ole Stanley(1978 Japanese vintage Mazda) and Stanley really ain't feeling to well lately(something about a burnt valve, and worn rings giving him permanent indigestion!). So we hukkel and sukkel down the N7 and we are really smokin' as we crawl up the first bridge. Allie starts praying aloud that we make it there and exhorts all of us to do likewise. Hey there goes Natalie. Hi Natalie, bye Natalie, as she passes us in her car. Into Frans Conradie and Stanley reckoned no that's it and no further so we got out and started to walk. Not very far because Natalie did a U turn and came back to fetch us. So I kinda told Stanley to chill and we'd be back for him, how, I did not have a clue.
Get to Sunday school and we have half a band, the half that is there would rather be somewhere else and are in a bit of a churning spin. What do we do? Most of our kids are away on Alpha and we can't do some of the skits. How are we going to keep those kids that are here occupied? What to do?(jeepers why did I get out of bed this morning) Haven't a clue lets just ask Jesus. So we pray and we just ask God to help make us available for Him and then to be obedient to His will.Surprise surprise everything works out fine. The band is great(definitely could have done another song). We do some skits. Clint was great in motivating our group of non conformists(no don't wanna do nothing!) to get them to do their skit. Michelle had such a neat idea getting us all to go outside and asking us to find something that reminded us of Gods' love for us.
Then there was the problem of getting home and picking up Stanley on the way. By this time however my fellow teachers all knew of our predicament so we had three options of a lift home. Then Grant said he'd just bought a tow rope on Thursday because God had laid it on his heart to be prepared to help out others with car problems. So that was sorted. As you can imagine it was a laugh a minute with Grant towing us home. EISH my bro!
Got home and just decided to go and buy some petrol. We had already raided the bank(Matthews piggy bank) and got some money together for petrol. Poured in the magic liquid and voila Stanley started(after a few burps and poeps), no wonder he didn't want to go any further earlier on.
Then off to a honour a breakfast invite from Cheryl, lekker stuff. We had great fellowship(and food!) and I fiddled around with the pool equipment for a while trying to get it to work a bit better.
Going to worship God with the rest of His Body is always such an awesome experience. Intercessory pray before service is always a blessing. Then saying hi to most of you. Apologies to the ones I missed. Then what a blessing there was a group of ladies from Table View Roman Catholic(we shared an Alpha weekend together, beginning of the year) and I finally got to meet Anne Rodrigues in the flesh(I have been communicating with her via email for almost a year now). The youngsters had just come from their Alpha weekend and were so excited and revved up for Jesus. Testimony time and man its always just so stunning to see God's work of grace in peoples lives.
Just after the service one of our sisters came up to us and said that we must not worry if the money for the purchase of our new car does not come through in time(we need it by the 28 September) as they would lend us the money until our money comes through(huh, yea, okay, WOW!!!!). Then ministry time and guess what Anne R comes up for prayer on behalf of her daughter, but we sommer prayed for her as well. Then during ministry His spirit just flowed as we were available and obedient again and as always I was just blown away by God's majestic work.
We had to take Madelyn back to St Josephs and we didn't think Stanley was really up to driving along the N2 so Bev came to our rescue and took her to the home. I went with her. Afterwards we had some supper at our place chatted listened to some songs and then she was off home.
I have probably left out so much but I hope this is the gist of it. Thank you all for who you are, may the love of Christ continue to grow within you and may you grow ever closer to our Holy Redeemer.

Here is a great song by Third Day (words by Mac Powell)

Who is this King of glory that pursues me with His love
And haunts me with each hearing of His softly spoken words
My conscience, a reminder of forgiveness that I need
Who is this King of glory who offers it to me

Who is this King of angels , O blessed Prince of Peace
Revealing things of Heaven and all its mysteries
My spirit's ever longing for His grace in which to stand
Who is this King of glory, Son of God and son of man

His name is Jesus, precious Jesus
The Lord Almighty, the King of my heart
The King of glory

Who is the King of glory with strength and majesty
And wisdom beyond measure, the gracious King of kings
The Lord of Earth and Heaven, the Creator of all things
He is the King of glory, He's everything to me

The Lord of Earth and Heaven, the Creator of all things
He is the King of glory, He's everything to me

His name is Jesus, precious Jesus
The Lord Almighty, the King of my heart
The King of glory

LoCTY !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, September 13, 2004

Worthy is the Lamb

My Family in Christ !!!

When last have you really messed up big time? When last have you spat in Christ's face as he hung on the cross dying for you? When last have you been just like Judas and betrayed your Saviour? When last even though you know your weaknesses and know the Devils tactics as to how he exploits those weaknesses, have you allowed yourself to fall so fast and so hard and then tried your level best to justify your compromised position? I did this weekend and man was I so ashamed of myself. I had a terrible argument with Allie my wife on Saturday morning and of course I blamed everything on her I was just so Mr Perfecto Self-righteous. After we had stopped shouting at each other I just could not bear to be in the house so I spotted the washing grabbed it and ran. While hanging up the washing I could not believe how God could love me I felt so vile. Then I started to experience it really deep down, God's grace and His mercy breaking through my anger and self loathing.
WOW what a God we serve it is just so breath taking there are no words enough that can describe it. Allie and myself later asked each other for forgiveness, by this time His Spirit had knocked me off my selfrighteous perch, and God just started healing us.He used you guys, His Body, to reaffirm who we are in Christ. As he spoke through Hennie at Sunday school. As we stood at the door on Sunday night and we were just so grateful for every one of you coming to worship God. The service was awesome and Allie and myself ministered together last night in such a beautiful way as His Spirit worked through us to heal and bless others. During the worship I felt so humbled by the Majesty of God I just fell down on my knees and put my face to the ground and prayed for all of you who make up this little part of His Body.
God just kept on speaking to me the whole of Sunday. Through the woman who came up to be ministered to. She had asked God just to tell her that He still loves her by playing her favourite song(Power of Your Love),which He did. She has gone through a really hurting period in her life and it all culminated that day. Her life has been radically changed and the change has been and still is soooo painful. But God is keeping her firm and strong. Just pray for her today. Through ministering to Ryan during the worship, the message from God via Geoff and just ministering to others and seeing the love of God on your faces as you worshiped Him,the only one worthy of worship. And speaking to people who are busy overcoming the sin and weaknesses in their lives. Thank you all of you for being specially you.

Just imagine this.

Then I looked again, and I heard the singing of thousands and millions of angels around the throne and the living beings and the elders.
And they sang in a mighty chorus:The Lamb is worthy - the Lamb who was killed He is worthy to receive power and riches and wisdom and strength and honour and glory and blessing. And then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea. They also sang:Blessing and honour and glory and power belong to the one sitting on the throne and to the Lamb forever and ever.
Revelation 5:11-13
Paraphrased in Michael W Smiths chorus line
Worthy is the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb
You are holy

Agnus Dei - Michael W. Smith


Monday, February 23, 2004

Street Evangelism (1)

Introduction: Presently there are two of us doing street evangelism, John Lawton and myself (Raymond White). This is the team!
The broad (and very flexible) plan is to go out on the street every other weekend on a Saturday evening alternating between ministry work at the soup kitchen and walking up Voortrekker Road (using the soup kitchen location as a starting point) up to Vasco station on one side of Voortrekker Road and then back down to the soup kitchen location on the opposite side of Voortrekker Road, just basically talking to people about the Gospel and handing out tracts.

The first time we did this was on the 24 January 2004. We opened in prayer and asked God for His protection and for His Spirit to go before us, we also asked for divinely appointed encounters. We started off at about 7.30pm. We spoke to roughly 100 people and handed out about 70 tracts (The Way to God, in English). We had some incredible meetings and chats with some people, many of the people had had a few drinks and were rushing off to go to another ‘jol’. There were very few people who outright rejected our ‘free’ offer (about three or four) and we were amazed and stunned at how some people just opened up to us. Quite a few of them asked us if we were Jehovah’s Witnesses and when we replied that we were not and explained who we were and where we were from they immediately became more relaxed with us.
Well we finished at about 8.30pm and came back to John’s car at the soup kitchen feeling pretty much on ‘top of the mountain’ but God had not finished with us yet. There were some stragglers at the soup kitchen and we chatted, prayed and encouraged these guys for about 20 minutes. Then eventually we got in the car and John was going to drop me at home in Bothasig. On our way there we noticed the same young woman who we had encountered earlier on the street, walking on the side of the road. When we first saw her on Voortrekker Road she had rushed by us in tears not wanting to talk to us. We stopped and she came running to the car, she recognized us and climbed in. She was very distraught and told us that she had had a terrible fight with her mother and she was on her way to her uncle in Summer Greens. We said that we would drop her off there. When we arrived at her uncle’s place he was not at home. We then took the young woman to my home where Allie gave her supper. We then acted as go betweens as she phoned her step-father to ask him to speak to her mother. After a few phone calls and prayer John took her home to Parow at about 10.30pm, where he saw the mother and her daughter cry and hug each other and be reconciled. John informed me over the telephone (round about 11pm) as to what had transpired. God is a god of peace!

The next time we went out was on the 7 February 2004. We then wanted to just bring the Gospel message to the people at the soup kitchen. Easier said than done. We talked to them informally and told them that we would be reading from the bible on the steps of the FNB bank. Well we had about three people pitch up who basically sat on the steps with their backs to us, slurping their soup, as we read alternating between English and Afrikaans from John’s Gospel chapter three. Talk about a captive audience! However God’s word never goes out with no return. One young guy was moved to ask for prayer for his drug problem and we ministered to him.
We went out again on the 21 February 2004. Again the we followed the same pattern as our first outing and this time I said to John that God was just telling us to walk slower and take more time with the people.
This time we had another tract to hand out, Your Most Important Relationship, in both English and Afrikaans as well as The Way to God. We had also received a stamp with the church’s contact details on it and we stamped all the tracts in preparation before we went out.
The first man we met told us what an important job we were doing (message from God) and told us his favourite bible story. We chatted to the security guards who remembered us from the first time around. We came across a wedding reception and congratulated and blessed the bride and the family. The groom was apparently waiting (hiding?!) inside the restaurant.
We met quite a few people who said they were Christians. One guy was studying the end times and we chatted a bit and encouraged him and I recommended some authors to him.
The street was surprisingly busy in spite of the fact that a really nasty south-easter wind was blowing and we spoke to just over a hundred people and handed out about 80 tracts.
A nasty incident was avoided when one young man decided he was going to pick a fight with some guys who had just passed him on the street. John overheard him and told him to leave it. I basically told John to stay out of it. I think I was praying in my heart and spirit (without realizing it) and then a police van pulled up (the cops just wanted to buy something to eat) and this stopped everybody from doing anything stupid.
We had some wonderful conversations and points of contact with people and again only about three or four total rejections. By the time we were finished on the street it was about 9pm. We then took some soup up to a homeless couple that lives under the stands of the Goodwood sports grounds. John has brought this couple to church twice now. There were also three parties going on there of various noise and intensity and we chatted to some of the folk who were standing outside smoking and drinking.
We don’t force ourselves on anybody we give everyone the option of saying no to the tracts and we say its for free. When we mention the word free this immediately gets peoples attention.
So far this has been a really exhilarating experience for both John and myself, we just step out in faith on a Saturday night and we know that it is God who is doing the work, Christ the redeemer is calling the lost, His Holy Spirit works through us and touches complete strangers. All we do is try our best to listen and be obedient to His Spirit within us. We are so grateful for this opportunity to do His will.


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