A LIFE CHANGING EXPERIENCE
May 17, 2009 § 8 Comments
Part IV of Brent’s Journey
The past weekend was likely one of the more humbling experiences I’ve ever had…and at the same time one the more exiting ones. We went on a missionary trip to take the word down to Idutywa on the Eastern Cape.
Idutywa is 1400km from our home base at Cape Town. It is a rural area and life there is somewhat different than that of Cape Town. We visited a church over there to do missionary work and to see how we could be of assistance to the people there. Our church and pastor, Pastor Roger, have had a close relationship with the pastor over there, Pastor David Mnikie, for some time. In addition to the two pastors a prophet of God, Carl Wills from the UK was there which made the whole thing all the more interesting and exciting.
On our arrival we were welcomed with such great love and warmth. It was interesting as I looked around at the surroundings and conditions these people were living in. Despite the less than desirable surroundings, there was so much joy and love all around us. It was unlike anything I have seen before. From the minute we arrived we were warmly welcomed. These people attended to our every need and that kind and giving manner just stole my heart.
These people have so little and yet give so much. They definitely made a huge impact on my life and made me question whether I’m doing enough to serve the people around me in my daily life. Here I was in this loving, caring and giving situation and couldn’t help but think back to only a couple years ago when I knew nothing of anything kind, gentle and caring.
My mind flashed back to a time that I can hardly believe I was a part of. My drug addiction took me to some horrible places both in my mind and in reality. In reality I belonged to one of the most notorious gangs in the Cape Flats area. I both witnessed and participated in many weird and evil things.
I was selling drugs at a time when there was a vigilante group on The Cape Flats (the area where I live) that was taking out all the drug dealers. I always feared that they were going to come after me even though they seemed to be taking out mostly the “Big Fish” at the time. I was constantly paranoid and eventually I and my gang got some firearms to protect us against these vigilantes. I stayed so drugged out that most of the time I had no idea what I was doing.
As I continued to think about all the love being showered on us there in Idutywa my mind flashed back to a specific night when I put a gun to the head of a woman who got in my way and I recalled how close I came to pulling the trigger. Someone stopped me before I pulled it but in anger I hit woman on the side of her head with the gun and left. Oh, dear God thank you for sending someone to stop me. How painful it is for me to recall some of the things I did and worse yet what I could have done while I was a slave to drugs.
Fortunately my flashback was interrupted by the serving of supper after which we prepared for the evening church service. As the service continued, more and more people from the community arrived. Young, elderly, people on crutches, they all came. Almost everyone in the community was there and eventually the service was packed. Soon the place was filled with people everywhere. There was a feeling of peace in the atmosphere as people began to come forward as the power of God moved them to do so.
We prayed for those who sought prayer and redemption. We saw people healed and saved by the grace of God. It was an amazing experience. The service continued for about four hours and we all experienced a high that can only be described as Heavenly.
More about this experience next time but in the meantime never underestimate the power of God.