- Our big God adventure: Episode 1 — God saves us and delivers me from racism
- Our big God adventure: Episode 2 — God sends three angels
- Our big God adventure: Episode 3 — A ‘scary’ woman takes off her shoes
- Our big God adventure: Episode 4 — Countdown to Kenya
- Our big God adventure: Episode 5 – Finally setting out for Kenya
- Our big God adventure: Episode 6 – Water from Heaven
- Our big God adventure: Episode 7 – Reaching the unreached
- Our big God adventure: Episode 8 – A ministry and a child are born
- Our big God adventure: Episode 9 – How our small playgroup became one of the largest ACE schools in Kenya
- Our big God adventure: Episode 10 –Election violence, cookies and a poem
- Our big God adventure: Episode 11 — How God used an attack on our lives to soften hearts
- Our Big God Adventure: Episode 12 — From the deep hole of depression to the ‘one set of footprints’
- Our big God Adventure: episode 13 – The blessing of the boy under the bush
- Our big God adventure: episode 14 — Six homeless boys bring Isaiah 58:7 to life!
- Our big God adventure: episode 15 – God rescues a little Samburu girl from certain death
- Our big God adventure: episode 16 – “… and you will dream dreams and see visions (part 1)
- Our big God adventure: episode 17 – “… and you will dream dreams and see visions (part 2)
- Our big God adventure: episode 18 — God ‘interrupts’ our lives to plant school in remote village
- Our big God adventure: episode 19 — Two cakes, a dog and a birthday party
- Our big God adventure: episode 20 — Another story of Butch, our loyal protector — and beloved rascal
- Our big God adventure: episode 21 — A stolen car and God’s miraculous intervention
- Our big God adventure: episode 22 – What the enemy intended for evil, God mightily used for His glory
- Our big God adventure: episode 23 – God intervening by showing us great and mighty things we do not know: Part 1
- Our big God adventure: episode 24 – God intervening by showing us great and mighty things we do not know: Part 2
- Our big God adventure: episode 25 – God intervening by showing us great and mighty things we do not know: Part 3
- Our big God adventure: episode 26 — Receiving God’s mercy in times of disobedience
- Our big God adventure: episode 27 — The land we never thought we’d own
- Our big God adventure: episode 28 — God used property we bought ‘by the way’ to show us ‘His way’
- Our big God adventure: episode 29 — Building according to the Master’s instructions
- Our big God adventure: episode 30 — ‘Let the little children come to me…’
- Our big God adventure: episode 31 — How the ’80/20 Rule’ helped our marriage and our ministry
- Our big God adventure: episode 32 — ‘My long and painful journey of restoration’
Missionary Lydia Venter highlights the importance of making time to connect with village children outside of their daily grind
“… and do not hinder them … for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” — Mark 10:13
We are very much aware of the importance of reaching children for Christ and, because of that, we can never claim to pursue holistic transformation if we do not intentionally include them in whatever we feel the Lord is leading us to do.
We all know that there is a lot of pressure on, especially urban children, these days and we should not be fooled into thinking that kids in an isolated location such as Lomolo Village, are spared such stress. They might not own smart phones or expensive gadgets, but because parents struggle so much financially, children are expected to perform well in school as it is strongly believed that good marks will grant them their “ticket” out of misery.
In addition to that you find a curriculum packed with information, leading to long school hours which again result in little time to play or dream. A vicious cycle, for sure. People in remote locations often rely on farming as their only source of income, so children are expected to help out as much as they can. It’s therefore not strange to find a 4-year-old boy looking after the goats or a 6-year-old girl with a baby sibling on her back.
Children of Africa are smart and creative. It usually only takes a little spark to create a huge fire inside of most kids, and over the years we’ve seen this over and over again. If teachers are only given half a chance, they can be very instrumental in this process, but because of a huge lack of resources it is often an area that is grossly neglected.
In Lomolo we’ve initiated several reading, art and sport camps over the years and every time we’re blown away by the natural talent of many of the students. I’ll never forget *John with his cardboard hat and *Stanley with his guitar made of a 5 litre container. We’re grateful to so many people and volunteers over the years who have invested resources and time into the kids we reach out to. But images of the children’s raw talent on display despite the lack of grand materials, glitter and fancy colouring pens, are still deeply engraved in our minds.
These camps give us the opportunity to spend time with the kids and learn more about them, their backgrounds and circumstances. Creating moments of fun or creativity, often become the catalyst for something deeper and richer and our talks easily spill over in discussions about God. Talk about art and you’ll have to admit that Jesus IS indeed an “artist extraordinaire!” What an opportunity to share with the kids that ‘we (they!) are indeed God’s work of art, created in Christ Jesus for the good works which God has already designated to make up our way of life. — Eph 2:10 NJB Talk about sport and you can’t help but remember Paul’s words in 1 Timothy 4:8, talking about the fact that “physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come”.
Many times, we measure success in how many children or people have raised their hands to receive Christ as their personal Saviour. But I am convinced that conversational words spoken during mealtimes, creative activities, gardening, working together, sport practices or over a simple cup of coffee or tea, can have great long-term impact as they are released and received in a natural environment without the pressure to make a decision on the spot. These are often the words one finds oneself pondering upon afterwards — at night or during difficult times when things do not make sense. The Holy Spirit knows how to retrieve such words spoken over us and will always remind us of God’s Word in order to make sure that it never returns to Him void. And sometimes it really does take years for seed sown in our lives to grow, develop, mature and bear fruit.
I remember my Afrikaans teacher in Laerskool Jongspan in Carletonville, Mr Deon Naude. I recall how his love for Christ reflected through his words and actions in the classroom. Although I only came to know the Lord many years later, I know that God used my teacher to sow a seed in my heart.
I conclude with The Voice Translation of Paul’s wisdom in 1 Corinthians 3:6-8 — “My job was to plant the seed, and Apollos was called to water it. Any growth comes from God, so the ones who water and plant have nothing to brag about. God, who causes the growth, is the only One who matters. The one who plants is no greater than the one who waters; both will be rewarded based on their work.”
* Not their real names
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