The Best Birthday, Ever.

So today I turned 34. My husband and I don’t really do birthdays, not because we are grumpy non-joiners, we just don’t.

So this morning I opened my eyes after around 730am after a lazy snooze in, and my eyes welled up! All I could think was how I honestly couldn’t be happier, not because I have everything and life is perfect, but because I have finally got to the point where my joy is in Jesus. No parties or gifts could make me happier than knowing that God has blessed me with another year and has changed my heart. Our life on this earth is short, and it is all about the journey, it is all about eternity. Realising this life is so short is not about cramming in everything we can do to live a busy life, being so busy in jobs to pay for ‘all the things’.  It is about focusing on what would bring God joy, what would bring our loved ones joys.  I finally realise that.

I have received more inspirational birthday messages this year than I ever have in my life, and to hear that friends can see in my life that I am living for the Lord is the best gift I could ever receive. Which led to more tears!  Hormonal or not enough crochet & cake … who knows!?

In just over 2 years, my life has completely changed, and there is only God to thank for that.  It really makes me reconsider the birthday vibe in our home.  Maybe it is time to start celebrating the years God has blessed us with, now that I don’t see it as just celebrating ourselves and buying presents.

All I can say is, Thank you Jesus for my life.

 

I am your Creator. You were in my care even before you were born. Isaiah 44:2

God doesn’t play dice.  Albert Einstein

Surely God would not have created such a being as man to exist only for a day! No, no, mad was made for immortality. Abraham Lincoln.

Why I love Resthaven Ministries

We found out about Resthaven Ministries  (NPO 013 389) through a very special couple we met through Riverside Community; Marcelle & Cory. Marcelle works for Door of Hope and Cory is involved at Resthaven Ministries, he runs Christian courses (parenting/caregiver, church planting, etc). Such an amazing couple.

It was late last year that we made our first trip to Resthaven.  Steve Rudd, the CEO, took us on a little tour and it didn’t take long for this organisation to creep into our hearts.

Resthaven was started in 1979 by the Saunders, and these days, Steve is now holding the reigns.  I don’t even know where to start to try and help you understand just how much they do! They are so busy looking after so many people, as well as other small organisations in their area, that there has just not been time for things like running projects to try get funds in, or updating social media and websites etc. I am in awe at how much they are achieving and the difference they are making to peoples lives.

There are 3 houses; Camelia, Jasmin and Rose, where elderly people live and are cared for.  These are people who either have no family, have been deserted and/or have nowhere to go.  They receive a government pension of R1500, and they pay R1200 to stay at Resthaven, but this doesn’t cover their costs. This includes a live in Caregiver, all their meals, utility bills, laundry etc.  Resthaven also has two mini buses which are used to transport residents to hospital appointment, the shops etc. There is such a lovely homely  atmosphere at these houses, they are not institutions for the elderly, they are homes, and they are run like homes.

Then there is David House, where 7 children live with their house mother, Ronel and 2 Aunties.  The children are all HIV+; they are so healthy and well and this is all thanks to the meticulous care they have been given by Ronel, from the day of their arrival. They attend schools locally, some attending a Christian School and a couple of them attending a special needs school. They are all doing so well in school and whilst this does come at a cost due to the school fees, Resthaven are determined to keep them in place so they can continue growing in character and academically.  They receive a discount on the school frees which are a huge help, but these are still R2800 per child per month! They are involved in extramural activities; they have been sponsored their classes with Dance Mouse Johannesburg. These kids have some pretty good moves! Again, David House was like walking into any other family home, the fridge and walls had kids artwork, reports and certificates pinned up, and they even have their own pet dog, Fifi. Their main supporter is Kibwe Kids, and they could not run as they do without this invaluable support.

They are in the process of re opening their Baby Sanctuary, where they hope to start off with up to 6 babies.  They have had the centre revamped and they are just awaiting final sign off from Health & Safety, etc etc etc!

In addition to all of this, every week they are feeding families and distribute food and donations to other like minded organisations in their area. So if anything is donated to them that they do not have a need for, they share it.

What I love about Resthaven, is they are not dealing with numbers or beds.  They care for each individual and want the absolute best for that person. Steve and his wife Jackie are dedicating so much of their lives to Resthaven, and have actually adopted two children who are now in their teens, one of these kids was actually from Resthaven.

Resthaven run at a loss every year! Their buildings are in need of maintenance, some of the roofs are leaking and the gutters are in need of repair.  The mini buses which are used to transport the residents are on their way out! Next years school fees are looming at a rapid rate. They need extra security installed, CCTV, electric fencing etc, as their unfortunately have been incidents. The list goes on. You can support their GivenGain Maintenance fund here.

I have wanted to be involved or help in some way, but logistically, they are in Johannesburg and we are in Heidelberg, and now moving to the North Coast.  But then I realised I run my business in England from South Africa- location doesn’t matter?!  So I offered to help them online, with a new website and assist with their social media accounts and trying to raise awareness for them.  We also have some exciting projects coming up! I am also thanking the Lord for bringing us Jackie de Paiva of Everlasting Photography, as she has donated her time and talent to take photos for our new website!

So please do visit the Resthaven Facebook page and give it a like. If you are interested there are so many ways you can help.

  • You could offer the obvious –  financial support!
  • You could offer your time as a skilled trades person
  • You could volunteer to go paint the ladies nails or play cards with the men or even just chat
  • You could volunteer to play games with the kids
  • Maybe you are an art student – offer your time to do art classes in the kids holidays
  • Maybe you are sporty – offer your time to play soccer or games with the kids
  • Maybe you don’t have time or money, but you could help spread the word by telling your contacts about Resthaven, and sharing their posts on social media.
  • Donate some treats like nice toiletries or boxes of chocolates to the elderly folk. When given a box of biscuits, one lady remarked how thrilled she was as she couldn’t remember when last she had her OWN entire box of biscuits.

We can make such a difference to these peoples lives.  If you want to help but don’t know how, drop me a line and I can assist with ideas to suit your time, skill and/or budget.

If you are interested in finding out more, please do get in touch with me on hope@resthavenministries.co.za.

 

 

VIDEO: Mark Gungor – What prayer is not

I listened to this podcast by Mark Gungor this morning – What Prayer is Not.  Within 5 minutes I was like; ‘Yes please!!’

What are we praying for? Why are we not getting answers to our prayers? Are we praying for God’s will? Are we partaking in each others sinning? Should we allow each to hide in prayer?

I think it is really important, in the words of Mark Gungor,  that we all “don’t do crazy”!

Maybe as he says, we need to be responsible for each other; give advice, maybe give the money in your pocket, go buy a meal etc.  Pray for the right thing.

Do not be hasty in the laying on of hands, and do not share in the sins of others. Keep yourself pure. 1 Timothy 5:22

This is a church sermon podcast, so if you want to skip the opening announcements and singing, the start the video at 23 minutes.

Turn my eyes from worthless things …

Another great post from DVO today. Only they can put a verse from the Bible, a quote from Socrates and Dolly Parton together along with a few paragraphs and this image, and leave you really reflecting positively on what they have had to say!

DVO“Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things, and revive me in Your way” Ps 119:37 (NKJV)

“Beware the barrenness of a busy life” Socrates

“Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life” Dolly Parton

I just love them.  Sign up for a free 30 day trial and see for yourself.

*This is not a sponsored post*

Rend Collective – awesome Christian tunes

I have been in the search for up beat Christian music and have just stumbled upon Rend Collective – described as “a Northern Irish Christian experimental, folk rock, worship band”.

Something a bit “Mumford & Sons” about them I think. Awesome that they have lyric videos on their YouTube channel, great for Life Groups / Small Groups/ Cell Groups, whatever you choose to call it. Loving it!

Here are a couple …

last one …

A slightly slower one from their Campfire album, but quite a new take on this song, 10 000 Reasons, that I have heard before.