Friday, October 28, 2011

Sowing seeds in people's lives

On one of my visits to my neighbours this week, we were chatting about our school years and the impact our teachers had in our lives. Words spoken to us and over our lives and in a sense, how that has affected our outlook as adults.

I absolutely LOVED my school years. I have such happy memories of teachers, friends, school events and so on. I gave it my all and got back so much in return. I too became a school teacher and I purposed in my heart to have a positive, life-changing impact and influence on students lives and any children that I was responsible for.

I was so encouraged and blessed this week when I received a message from a young gentleman who used to be a student at the very first school I taught - 20 or so years ago. He lives in South Africa and has a family of his own. This is what he said:
"Mrs Manhanga. It has been a long time!.......You know just recently I was thinking about my experiences prior to coming to Christ. I remember the day you invited me to Victory (a church I used to attend in Mutare, Zimbabwe). I remember the service....... Actually I remember you in the context that one sometimes sow a seed of the word in a person's heart. You were one of those people who sowed that seed I believe. I have now been a christian for some time but I remember that experience. I think the pastor preaching on that day was Dave Wyns on 'What is the time?' SO, be encouraged." Encouraged I was as I remember this gentleman and recall speaking to him about God.

Many of us have had these kinds of emails, messages or verbal affirmation on the positive impact we've had on others and it's amazing how we don't seem to forget the event or people involved. I continually thank God for the many people - family, friends, teachers, preachers, mentors etc who have impacted my life so positively over the years. I pray that you too will be a positive influence in other people's lives and they will be able to share with you of how you have impacted them.

Go on - sow those seeds and get the fire burning for Christ.....

Friday, October 21, 2011

Jesus' heart for the poor

I was reading this article again and thought I'd post it on the blog.

The Father in heaven sent His only Son to be born on earth as a man. He chose His birthplace to be a stable, and His earthly mother and father were from the lower end of society. He was trained as a carpenter by His father, and owned nothing at the end of His life. It is very significant that the King of glory chose to come in this way, so that the very poorest people can truly relate to His message.
Jesus grew up to be a man, and had some years living in and relating to the world, and then when He was thirty years old the Father told Him the time for His great work had come. Soon after this Jesus took out the scroll in the synagogue in His hometown Nazareth to announce the ministry, for which his Father had sent Him, and read from Isaiah 61:1-2, “The Spirit of the sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners…”
We have seen in Africa that poverty is a real captivity and a stronghold. The poor don’t know how to escape from it and such a sense of hopelessness comes over them, and poverty causes so much suffering and broken-heartedness. Praise God that Jesus came to set them free, and to heal them and restore them.
It is also very significant that when Paul and Silas began their great work of taking the Gospel to the Gentiles and the rest of the world, James, Peter and John gave them their blessing, and Paul reported in Galatians 2: 10, “All they asked was that we should continue to remember the poor, the very thing I was eager to do.”
What a mandate, what a priority in God’s heart are the poor, that He inspired the apostles, through His Holy Spirit, to remember that the expression and outworking of the Gospel is primarily the good news for the poor, who are the most severe casualties of the sin and fall of man. Surely Jesus humility and unselfishness, and His heart for the poor and His plan for their deliverance compose the True fast!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Eating healthy

There has been much talk on the radio and television about healthy lifestyles. There is much concern about child obesity, leading sometimes to adult obesity and subsequently to health problems like heart attacks or strokes etc, etc. There is also much talk about government intervention - putting policies and procedures in place on how and what people should eat, curbing fast food advertisements etc. All fair and good but I think that eating right and exercising begins in the home. If a parent leads by example, children will emulate them. It gets tricky when the parent is eating a hamburger or pizza with obvious delight and enjoyment and then expect their child to eat carrot sticks or cauliflower. That really doesn't work. Healthy lifestyles need to be intentional and for those who battle, make a menu detailing exactly what you'll eat or scheduling a date to do some exercise.

The big question is "Would banning adverts of fast foods help with obesity?" Let's face it - fast foods are yummy! They are tasty, convenient, quick and easy to make, sometime are less costly than healthy foods, alluring and basically shout 'Come eat me! Come eat me!' Fast foods are used as a "treat' for children and culturally we socialise around food. Now french fries, deep fried chicken, sausages, pizza, wraps etc sounds much tastier(forget the health aspect) than carrot sticks, broccolli, cucumber etc (which would be considered rather bland!)

A little boy commented; "I don't like vegetables. I like sweets. It gives me energy to cycle." Spoken like a child. It is the parent however that buys fast food for the child or the sweets and often times give in to the child's tears or tantrums for fast food. Obesity, whether genetic or not is the END result of overindulgence and overeating. We need to analyse and tackle the root cause of eating fast food and generally overeating. It's not common to see an overweight child in Kezi and this is mainly due to:

1. Diet - Sadza and a relish, sweet potato, barley, pumpkin, ground nuts, maize, sour milk etc

2. Exercise - Most people either walk or cycle to their various destinations

3. Work - mostly manual work in the fields

Some say it takes 14 days to break a habit while others advocate 21 days. Whatever the case may be, the child's long term longevity should be a priority and it all begins in the home.

Compiled by Molly Manhanga

Monday, October 17, 2011

Visit to Thembalezizwe Church pt 2

Steve Manhanga bringing greetings from Crossroads

Children's work at TLZ Hamara

Building used by TLZ Hamara (Nice!)

By Molly Manhanga


Genesis 1:1, 31 “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth…….Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good.”

God made a place for us. It was only going to be a few days before He crafted His most special creation of all – the one He loved more than anything else He made…….humankind, created in His own image. But first, God, in His sovereignty, made a place for us: earth, a place of great beauty to enjoy and one that provided for our every need, and heaven where we can live with Him forever. In the beginning, He was preparing for us.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Visit to Thembalezizwe Church in Hamara pt 1

Mike Ndlovu, leader of Thembalezizwe Church in Hamara

It was great visiting Thembalezizwe Church Hamara this morning led by Mike and Simanga Ndlovu. The church officially opened on 4th September 2011 and they are doing so well.

Simangaliso Ndlovu - Mike's lovely wife

Mike’s message was on The key to enjoying God’s Kingdom and the scripture he used was Luke 15:11 on The Prodigal Son. The essence of his message was on repentance and seeking God. The young man came to a point in his life when he decided to go back home....this was the point of repentance and he was welcomed home. Mindsets are very important. We need to change the way we think as this changes us inwardly and we see right from wrong. If we seek God’s kingdom, He adds to our lives, He gives us the things we need.

The fellowship after was good.

Hamara congregation

By Molly Manhanga

Thought for the day

Matthew 5:13

You are the salt of the earth
But if the salt
loses it's saltiness,
how can it be made salty again?
It is no longer good
for anything, except to be
thrown out and
trampled by men.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Movie Review: Transporters 2

Transporter 2 is an entertaining, action packed movie. I enjoyed watching it. The story surrounds the Billing family where the Transporter (Jason Stratham) transports young Jack Billing but Jack gets kidnapped for a ransom. The real motivation behind the kidnapping is to infect Jack’s dad with a deadly virus. Frank of course saves the day.

Rule 1: Respect the man’s car and he’ll respect you.
Rule 2: Greet the man
Rule 3: Put your seat belt on when in the car
Rule 4: never make a promise you cannot keep.

Frank Martin played by Jason Stratham is a different kind of driver. He takes Jack Billing to the doctor and that’s where all the action starts. Frank is a man with self-control, skilled fearless ex-mercenary. He’s definitely the hero who doesn’t display much emotion but gets the job done – the intuitive, no nonsense type. The high speed car chases and the running show how skilled he is. Needless to mention his ability to take care of himself (fighting)
His friend from France provides some humour to this movie. He is a police officer/cook. The cooking is a skill that helps break the ice. I like it when he says “A meal is only limited by your imagination.”

The movie is really interesting – full of action from start to finish.

Friday, October 7, 2011


Esther 10:3 "Mordecai.......was great among the Jews and well received by the multitude of his brethren, seeking the good of his people and speaking peace to all his countrymen."

All of us want peace. Peace with God. Peace of mind. Peace is a little foretaste of heaven. Of all God's gifts to believers, peace has proven the most difficult for the enemy to counterfeit. Lust can masquerade as love. Pride can hide in a cloak of humility or generosity. Temporary happiness will often look more appealing than true joy. Then there is peace. You either have it or you don't!

We sing "When peace like a river attendeth my way." How we long to be able to say, 'It is well with my soul!'

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Have faith in Him

Psalm 135:6

The Lord does whatever

pleases him,

in the heavens and

on the earth,

in the seas and all

their depths.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Press Towards Jesus

Matthew 9:20 – 21 “Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. She said to herself, ‘If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.’”

Have you ever been in a situation where you felt desperate, like there was nothing you could do. You struggle with insomnia, fatigue, depression, pain etc. You know that God is in control but there are days when you just want to crawl under the covers and sob.

The woman who touched Jesus’ cloak must have felt the same sort of desperation. The Bible says she had been bleeding for 12 years. Not only was she suffering physically, she was also probably suffering emotionally. In Jewish society, such a woman would have been labelled “unclean”. Because of this status, she would have been considered an outcast. The loneliness and isolation must have felt overwhelming. No wonder she pressed through the multitude of people who were following the Messiah. She must have believed that touching him was her only hope.
Imagine her breathless expectation as she reached toward Jesus.....and her overwhelming relief when she realised that he had, indeed, relieved her suffering. What joy must have flooded her the very instant she touched the hem of his cloak!

Jesus is our Great Physician. Sometimes he heals in an instant, other times he heals over a period of years or he waits to heal allowing us to press into him so that he can “strengthen (us) with his power through his spirit in (our) inner being” Ephesians 3:16. At other times, he does not heal. Then, like Paul, we learn that “(God’s) power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

The ways in which God ministers to people are as varied as the people he touches – but he is always faithful to bring peace and joy, even in the midst of our suffering. Press into Him and experience his power.

When floods come

Genesis 7:1 – 24

God protects us: Genesis 6:17 – 18 “I am going to bring flood waters on the earth......everything on earth will perish. But I will establish my covenant with you, and you will enter the ark – you and your sons and your wife and your sons’ wives with you.”

When natural disasters hit a community, town, city or country, the loss is mind boggling. Families get torn apart; there are lots of tears, unbearable pain or sorrow and so on.

Long ago there was a great flood. Noah and his family knew catastrophe was coming, so they built an ark at God’s command. They followed instructions. They braced for impending crisis. They endured umpteen years of looking foolish. They faced criticism, ridicule, and rejection. They plodded in the slow work of faith and love. Then the downpour came and the final command: “go into the ark.” So Noah and his family left everything and evacuated to the big boat. The devastation of the world they knew had to be heartbreaking. But they followed God, and his grace saved them from the disaster.

When storms come in your life, they may not be a calamity on the scale of the flood. But they may bring just as much sorrow and pain – an illness, an accident, a betrayal. In the midst of the event, your decisions can help save you and your family. Let’s face it; disaster can strike whether you’re a saint or a sinner. To survive requires spiritual preparation. When you build your home on the foundation of God’s Word, you can find safety despite the downpour outside. You can help those you love to weather the storm. Begin now to prepare your house for the storms that are sure to come: spend time in the Bible. Strengthen your relationship with God and with a Godly community. Bring those you love before God in prayer.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Developments at the Crossroads plot pt 2

Lady clearing the field - with joy!

As the rainy season is fast approaching, many farmers are working hard in their fields with land preparations: weeding, clearing, digging planting stations and so on. This too is one of the activities at the Crossroads plot. Quite alot of work has been done in clearing the fields where Steve Manhanga wants to plant maize, sunflower, groundnuts etc.

Land preps underway for this rainy season

Steve will be training farmers tomorrow at Crossroads as he does Well Watered Garden size (7.2m x 7.2m)demonstration plots. We hope and pray that God blesses us with adequate rainfall and that the animals, particularly baboons, don't have a "field day" eating the crops.

Hard at work in the field

By Molly Manhanga

Developments at the Crossroads plot pt 1

Moulded bricks made from anthill

Ladies building moulding bricks

I found it quite interesting going to the Crossroads plot and seeing people doing differents chores. The ladies caught my attention as they were moulding bricks from anthill which they are going to use to build a hut(round house) and a little kitchen. I asked the ladies how long a hut can last seeing at it was being built with anthill and they assured me 5 years or more. I marveled at how confident the ladies were. The moulded bricks will dry in the sun for 3 days before they start building. I sure will keep tabs on their progress.

Ladies having a rest to answer a few questions I have

By Molly Manhanga

Saturday, October 1, 2011

The armour of God

God’s armour for us: Ephesians 6:10 - 17

We are engaged in a spiritual battle – all believers find themselves subject to the devil’s attack because they are no longer on the devil’s side. Paul tells us to use every piece of God’s armour to resist the devils attacks and to stand true to God in the midst of those attacks.

The devil fights with lies, and sometimes his lies sound like truth; but only believers have God’s truth, which can defeat the devil’s lies.

The devil often attacks our heart – the seat of our emotions, self-worth, and trust. God’s righteousness is the body armour that protects our heart and ensures his approval. He approves of us because he loves us and sent his Son to die for us.

The devil wants us to think that telling others the Good news is a worthless and hopeless task – the size of the task is too big and the negative responses are too much to handle. But the shoes God gives us are the motivation to continue to proclaim the true peace that is available in God – news everyone needs to hear.

What we see are the devil’s attacks in the form of insults, setbacks, and temptations. But the shield of faith protects us from the devils fiery arrows. With God’s perspective, we can see beyond our circumstances and know that ultimate victory is ours.

The devil wants to make us doubt God, Jesus, and our salvation. The helmet protects our minds from doubting God’s saving work for us.

The sword is the only weapon of offense in the list of armour. There are times when we need to take the offensive against the devil. When we are tempted, we need to trust in the truth of God’s Word.