As the news unfolds internationally and locally, prophecies and stories about the end of the world abound. It seems that the focus is mostly on the version where the world as we know it ends abruptly because of something unexpected and catastrophic happening. There are natural versions of this fear in which a meteor hits the earth or a disease spreads unchecked or an earthquake causes the oceans to flood until humanity is no more. The shock and unexpected terror of such an event has given way to countless novels and movies. As Christians we are also aware of an apocalypse prophecy where Jesus will return to take believers with Him at a date and time unknown to us. In both these apocalyptic versions, we are not in control and more like participants hoping to escape the worst.
Rob Bell writes about another kind of apocalypse that we bring on ourselves. This happens when we make a mess of the earth through our uncontrolled consumption of fossil fuels, nuclear bombs, chemical and plastic pollution of our rivers and oceans etc. This is the kind of apocalypse we can control if we take our divine responsibility to be stewards of creation seriously enough. The story of Adam and Eve and their relationship to the earth they inherited gives perspective on our responsibility to be good stewards, because our survival depends on it.
We need to live more intentional about the things we can control that will bring heaven to earth, here, now, today: loving our neighbour, becoming people of character and integrity, taking better care of our environment through actual change.
We should live with the same anticipation of believers through the ages that everything will be put right, in the way God intended it to be. It was a hopeful joyous expectation that there is still a better future of the world. A true apocalypse is not something to be feared but something to be celebrated and entered into daily!
(From: What is the Bible?, Rob Bell, 2017)
As Stand Firm Enterprises we try to do our part to bring about restoration in the lives of the people we encounter.
- Walking with Wounded Children Training
Our next training is scheduled for 1-5 July 2019.
The organization we will be working with is “Moms for Wellington”. (www.masvirwellington.co.za/ ) We have 12 participants from diverse backgrounds. As we train them to journey with traumatized children, they are confronted with their own trauma and pain. This is part of their healing as they participate in the healing of the children they will be working with.
During the past month, Magda counselled an eleven year old girl in Bishop Lavis. They established a good relationship and Magda will continue with G when the school starts.
A desperate mother called us to help her deal with her 5 year old son. She described him as frustrated and aggressive at times. He only became aware of a father in his life when he was 3 years old, and since then the father has not been constructively involved. Theunis “plays” with Z twice a week. Over the past 3 weeks Z has become more confident and is speaking more freely about his feelings.
These two children have trouble making sense of their inner world because of traumatic incidents in their lives. Their families are doing everything to create structure and routine for their outer world. The times of “Organized Play” we provide help them to sort out their inner world. It is a long journey to healing, but we are encouraged by the signs of progress we see in G and Z.
- Integer Network, South Africa
Theunis’ brother Louwrens registered an NPO as a branch of an international network started in the USA by one of his friends. Integer is a coaching network that promotes authenticity to cultivate wholeness through coaching relationships, equipping events and global partnerships. Theunis is now a director at Integer Network, SA and he is registered to be a Strengths Coach within the framework of services that Integer Network presents.
We continue to seek more income-generating opportunities to alleviate the shortfall on our personal budget and to continue to replace donation income with income from coaching and training opportunities. We trust that our involvement with Integer Network, SA will give us more exposure and bring some coaching opportunities.
We have two appointments scheduled for July to discuss future training opportunities within organizations working with marginalized children. We are also trying to find an open door with denominational churches in Durbanville and Welgemoed.
Our tickets have been bought for Uganda and Theunis and Louwrens will return to Uganda at the end of August to continue the training of the South Sudanese Pastors in the refugee camp to become facilitators of the Walking with Wounded Children material. We will write more about this in our next letter.
Please refer possible clients for business-and life coaching and training to us.
(Read more about the services we offer on this website)
We had two children celebrating their birthdays in June. Thea-Marie (11 June) and her husband Tiaan (29 June). It was good to spend some quality time with both of them during June – Theunis had breakfast with Tiaan around Fathers` Day and Magda and Thea-Marie are making the best of the school holiday! Theunis also had a meal with Hardus to catch up with their busy lives.
We are grateful for the extra income generated through the Walking with Wounded Children – Training. We are also grateful for the donations and prayers from every faithful ministry partner enabling us to focus on the work we have been called to do.
Thank you for your continued love and support.