Tuesday, 29 August 2017

A New Season

This is the latest update from Ruth Turner who is working at Footprints South Africa, a ministry of Iris Global.

Hello! The seasons are changing again here as we go into Spring in South Africa, and I’m thankful for it. These last couple of months have felt really quite hard if I’m honest, I’ve felt very tired a lot of the time and struggled to keep up my energy levels to meet the needs of all the children. We’ve had a lot less volunteers on base than normal (at times only 6 when often it can easily be 15 or so) and so had little time to rest.  An amazing friend of mine blessed me with financial provision to go to a country hotel for 4 days, it was honestly incredible. I slept most of the time and spent precious time with Jesus. I felt like He gave me a new perspective, and honestly in coming back it feels like I’m breathing again. He helped me to see that all the things I do everyday, whether it is feeding our 50 chickens, 20 rabbits, playing with kids, teaching, reading stories etc, please His heart, and if my aim is to please Him always (2 Corinthians 5 v 9) then I will feel His pleasure in it. I also realised I was putting way too much pressure on myself, we do that so easily don’t we? Once I changed how I viewed my day from a long list of things “to do” to seeing His heart in it and enjoying the life He has blessed me with, I got my joy back. I wanted to be “real” in writing this in the hope that it may encourage you too if you find yourself in a similar struggle. It may be a hard season just now, but after the night comes the morning, just hold on and trust Him in it. 

So Footprints life continues to be full of surprises and fun: Recently our boys found a snake – they pulled it out by the tail (don’t even get me started), put it in a box, and then called everyone to gather round whilst they did a snake show!

One night I found a big spider on my bed, unable to tell if it was a venomous one or not I’m afraid it met its untimely end with my boot and a big bottle of “Doom” (bug spray!)

It's at times like these that I definitely know I’m living in Africa!!

Hospital update:  Two weeks ago my friend Jackie and I were in the Tuberculosis ward praying for the ladies. We had just left and were walking away from the isolation wards when a male nurse came chasing after us. He asked us what organisation we were with, to which I replied “we follow Jesus” and then he said, please come and pray for my patients, they are very sick. We followed him into the Men’s TB ward, and sure enough there were 3 gentleman who were very ill indeed. We spoke life and prayed over them, two of them were unconscious. One man, named Sepo had his blanket pulled over his head, but he was conscious. He was emaciated, had open sores and skin literally peeling off his face. The nurse told us that Sepo used to also pray for people in hospital. We prayed for his healing and that He would know the peace that only Jesus can bring, and he uttered just one word “Hallelujah”. That one word really spoke to me, here was a gentleman, clearly  suffering and yet the word he spoke was to give praise and glory to God, knowing that our bodies may fade away but he is loved by the King of Kings and will be for all eternity. He was dying yes, but he knew the secret, that true life is found in Jesus.

 Keep praying for the TB wards – they are emptying, I know this sounds incredulous, but the last few times we have been there there have been so many empty beds, the nurse’s answer:  “God has healed them”. Yay Jesus!

At Munsieville: My heart for the people of Munsieville (the white squatter camp) continues to grow. I love those people so much and I love how God is transforming their lives and giving them identity. In the last few weeks we’ve been super blessed to have the Harvest school teams (32 people from nations across the world) come from Pemba in Mozambique full of the fire of God and with His heart to help all they can. They stayed for 3 days in Munzieville and poured out God’s love in so many ways. One of my friends there, Nelly, a single Mum, had not had a door on her shack for 2 weeks, which is neither safe nor practical in sheltering her and her child from the cold at night. I was with a team of 3 guys who fixed her door in less than half an hour. Nelly was so happy and relieved. We’ve also been able to give another lady an extra room in her house so her grandson can come to live with her (he is currently in an orphanage). Love really does look like something, and I love seeing the changes in my friends in Munsieville as they begin to realise they are not forgotten, that they have a purpose and a calling in life and that they are very loved.

Fixing the door

Munsieville kids having fun with their cart with the team

Praying for a friend

Thank you so much to everyone who prayed for more volunteers to come and help us here at Footprints... I think we have over 20 people here just now including a family where husband and wife are both GPs. We are very excited about this because they are here to get our mobile medical clinic up and running (a caravan that has been equipped with medical supplies) to take into the local townships to help all those who cannot afford to see a doctor. God’s provision is wonderful and I’m excited to see what this new season holds. 

Thank you so much for your support and your prayers, it means the world. Please let me know how you are and send me your news.
 Please pray:

  • -          For Pastor Yolanda (the children’s Mom) who is currently out in Sierra Leone helping as part of a relief team after the mudslide disaster

  • -          For my friends Mark and Tashi who have been trying to adopt their daughter Hope for four years (she is in my preschool class) , they found out their social worker is corrupt and they have to pay an immense sum of money and restart the process

  • -          For health here at Footprints – for the past two weeks almost every adult and child has been ill at some time with either the flu (the real version) or a tummy bug, and we are still fighting it        (I currently have the flu but I’m on the mend)

  • -          For the mobile medical clinic – that it will be well received and God will lead us to the places where it is needed the most