Thursday 25 February 2016

The Child Bride Epidemic!

Ukuthwalwa. The stories will break your heart. It's happening every day in rural South Africa. Girls as young as fourteen are being forced to marry men double their age. In some cases, men as old as fifty-five take these virgin girls as their brides. These daughters are abducted and forced to marry a stranger, and then they are raped. Their new "husbands" will not take "no" for an answer. The "brides" are merely legal slaves under this custom.

 This is the reality in some rural South African communities, but all over the world, the epidemic of child brides is growing, fed by the traditions and customs of patriarchy. 

Child brides, there are over 700 million women alive today who were married as children and forced to live a life of "slavery." I am writing about this issue over at CBE this week, please join me and share the article!

Here's the link: The Child Bride Epidemic

Friday 19 February 2016

FMF - So full I can forget!

Five Minute Friday - this week's prompt is Forget! GO!

My husband and I were treated to an amazing day on a wine estate, where we got to blend our own tea and coffee, while enjoying a tasting experience. We got to explore the gardens and see the daily ritual of their 800 ducks making their way to the vineyards to work! The ducks are a highlight for sure, and at midday we sat down with 20 strangers and enjoyed a 3 course harvest lunch that lasted 3 hours. We chatted, we dined and we met people whom we would never have met before and I felt like I was part of a family. 
There was so much friendliness, openness and warmth and the gift of being present. This week has been a bit tough for me, knowing that we have a court case next week and feeling a bit scared writing a film script for the first time but today was a treat, a treasure. And among the peach trees and presence of strangers, my soul forgot, all those burdens and as the ducks quacked passed me, their beautiful faces told me that this is a gift from God. This sense of being full within, the sense of something satisfying, the moment of breathing and rest. The living reality of just being spoilt without having to pay for anything, and that is also grace. We were treated like family members without having to pay for that experience and when we left, we were given gifts too! That is grace isn't it, living grace - the kind of Grace I've been given as a child of God because I believe in Yeshua and in the physical I feel so satisfied, and I wondered do I sometimes forget to be satisfied in the spiritual, when I live everyday as a forgiven family member, invited to eat from the most glorious harvest table of Heaven, where I have been given gifts too! Our natural experiences echo our spiritual realities and today I am so full and I can hold that experience inside and express my thank you. Thank You to a Gracious God for ordaining today for me, for knowing how the move of the leaves and the birds voices on the breeze is all satisfying and to be around warm strangers, it's a buchu tonic for the soul.
Praise You God for You are Good!

Linking with Kate M

Monday 15 February 2016

Just Not Everyday

  "You used to be a daily blogger?" she said with a smile,.
Was I? I thought, not that I considered myself someone who wrote a lot.
I have not had an unction to write here that much, not that the space goes quiet, there's enough thoughts on here to last, but yea this season looks different.

I have turned from and turned towards, the deeper sense of silence. My words are now being used for different purposes, some I never expected. And when God does not want me to use words for something I think about lately, He makes my words go silent. I stop to write and there is nothing. Then I pick up something else, and I feel the burning within.
My words run across the pages, both in cyber space and in real life and I am transported, they burn in front of my eyes and I am amazed, did I write that! Yes, He smiles, We wrote it together - see what I can do through you.
Wow, words are Holy. 
But of course they are and He does not want me to spend them easily. 

I have entered a different space, as though I have walked through an imaginary door in to a clearer space and I love it here. Where I dont have to expend words. I am usually a good communicator but my words are less and less, comfortable with more silence in everyday life.

Perhaps it's the season too, where stress has played a roll in learning to settle silently. In learning to breathe more openly and more deeply. In this new place, I am easier.
It wont be forever, and I still love hearing your voices, keep me up to date and with you my friends I do rejoice, in all the work you are doing, all the wonders you are joining in with and all the ways you are speaking.

Each one of you are special and I'm still going, still blogging, just perhaps not everyday! But my voice is still singing! 

Friday 12 February 2016

FMF - There's No Limits!!

Five Minute Friday, Go! This week's word is Limit!

 Guess I'm on an absolutely high today after a tough week and I give Glory to God. How beautfiul His Grace and His Happiness. Happiness is found in Him and oh how good it is! I've just had a great day - watching cricket with my hubby, while snacking prematurely on our Sabbath Kitke, with dip and salt and vinegar chips! Loving how sport always teaches us lessons we would never have learned and realising again just how deep my life's walk is and will continue to be. We walk through things people wont see, and that's the beauty of a life lived with and solely for Messiah. We dont have to tell everyone everything, or make them understand because God knows and when we celebrate great victories that He brings us to, He knows what we went through to get there and its enough.

Last week I was surprised with an offer from a movie director, to write a faith - based film script based on a true story of one woman's journey through cancer and how God healed her. When praying about my decision, I felt the touch of Heaven on me and I knew I had to be involved. Meeting with the director yesterday, I suddenly realised how God has me writing women's stories. My first book out in July, is a true woman's story, my second is a true story and now this film is a true story and I marvel at the limitlessness of God's amazing Grace and Love. Back in 2011 when I first heard God's voice saying that I would write to change women's lives, I cried because I did not know when or how. And today, here I am, small but marvelling in God's Hands. I am His and if He ordains these things for me, I rejoice, these are my beautiful things to enjoy. I will walk where no one can see and grow with only my King and in this, I know I am leaving behind my heart's dream - to leave behind something for the next generation, for the people around me. And it's all because Father's Grace is limitless and His love endless and He has chosen this all for me, because of His Love! 

Sharing with Kate M 

Wednesday 3 February 2016

Hope and Help for Abused Men - Writing Elsewhere!

 Domestic violence is a major social cruelty within South Africa, while we annually discuss and rally support for the 16 Days of Activism against Gender – Based violence, many forget that domestic violence is a daily, ongoing struggle. As a researcher, I spent years interviewing, questioning, turning over statistics and policies in order to understand the extent and impact of domestic violence. My research opened up painful cruelties in terms of what women suffer at the hands of the men who claim to love them and yet another face of domestic violence suddenly began to form before my eyes.
While domestic violence has always focussed on advocating women’s rights in terms of abuse, our society has in recent years, seen a rapid increase in domestic violence against men. Worldwide statistics indicate that as many as one in three victims of abuse, are in fact males and the stigma attached to this reality prevents many men from speaking out.

We need to help our brothers, provide a safe environment for them to share their pain and we need to realise, husband abuse is on the rise....

Please join me for the rest of the article, over here Abused Men