When we went back to Cape Town (where we moved from to follow God’s call to be involved in ministry in Namibia), for our daughter’s 21st birthday, I found a silver envelope between all Charl’s notes we had yet to pack up. I nearly threw it away thinking it was empty, but at the last minute I thought I better check it out and there inside was R1000, hooray! We had incurred a lot of extra costs with our move and that for us was a testament to God’s ongoing faithfulness towards us.
Admittedly the stresses and strains that go with this kind of massive move have taken its toll on us as a couple and we have had to process some things. We had to spend time focusing on the fact that God brought us to Namibia and that He will undertake for us in unimaginable ways. We were reminded that ‘this’ is all about Christ and His Kingdom – we are only vessels He is using at the moment.
The folks here are loving living out Acts 2:42-45 – the fellowship, prayer together, breaking of bread, encouraging one another etc. Unfortunately because of the distances most have to travel to get to church they are often only able to come to church once a month for the celebration we call ‘Loffees’ (Love Feast). The guys that travel the furthest are 275 kms away from Aranos . There are only a handful of families who live in Aranos itself, the rest live anything from 20 – 275 kms away- this is due to Namibia being a big farming community, with the farms being quite a distance from one another.
Pray God would keep us filled with love for these people, now our people, and that He would knit our hearts closely with theirs.
The most practical way for us to meet with people is to travel around to the outlaying areas. We have four different areas we focus on – Aranos, Stampriet, Mata Mata and some farms close to the Botswana border . We leave on the Friday afternoon and come home on Monday, sleeping on a different farm each night. Charl said we are going to run hard especially in the beginning and believe me we have been running hard already, but loving it!
Last Sunday we met on one of the farms in Stampriet – with about 23 adults and 10 children. Our biggest group of people live in this area. God has now added three new families from this area that want to be part of the church, praise God. One of the guys recommitted his life to the Lord on Sunday too! There are three special elderly ladies in our congregation whom I call ” My Golden Girls”, two of which drove 80 km (around an hour’s drive) to come to this meeting. They are so excited about what God is doing and have told us that whatever we ask of them they are willing to do, even if it’s difficult – they want to be stretched and grow in God. What gems!
Please keep us in your prayers, pray with us that God would give us much wisdom as we minister into the lives and hearts of the people of Aranos and surrounds. Pray God would keep us filled with love for these people, and that He would knit our hearts closely with theirs.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Joanne is married to her sweetheart, Charl and together they are in ministry in Aranos in Namibia. Jo is a lover of people, a keen baker, doting grandmother, dedicated mother and passionate follower of Christ.
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