Monthly Archives: December 2014

Trip to Limpopo

I got an e-mail saying, you are going to Limpopo for a conference about HIV. Your purpose is to gather information about how we can broadcast our children’s program, “Grandma’s Village” to people in Limpopo. I had to look up Limpopo on a map. I had never heard of that country, and for a good reason. It is a province in South Africa just north of Guateng where we live. After an easy peasy 5 hour drive…. (We had air conditioning something I never had in the States), we arrived in Tzaneen. The conference covered 16 weeks of teaching in 4 days. We learned everything from helping kids make good choices to forgiveness to recognizing good and toxic relationships. It was a very interactive teaching considering that we would be teaching teenagers. I never sat down for more than 45 minutes through the whole training.

We had four sections: creating a vision for life, building healthy relationships, making wise decisions and putting it all together when it came to HIV. There were many lessons inside the different sections. One of the most powerful activities I watched was about forgiveness.  A man had to run across the room, grab a jacket, button it up, and run back. He was timed and he was fast. But then some terrible things happened in his life like fights with friends, an unfair boss, a divorce. Every time he held on to the bitterness and hurt another misshapen, heavy bag was added to him. Every time he ran to grab the jacket, button in up, and run back, he was slower. Finally he had so much baggage around him; he couldn’t perform the simple task. It was a good visual of how unforgiveness and holding grudges on anyone or ourselves can slow us down or make life impossible.

There were many other activities and stories but there are just too many to share. The highlight of my trip though was the worship we did before every session. We didn’t have any instruments. Different women would come to the front of the room and start to sing. The rest of us would join her but she had a solo part and we had the following part. There was dancing to every song. Some of the people even taught me a traditional dance they used in worship. I couldn’t understand the words but I could feel the presence of God there when we worshipped. I have a video attached to this blog if you want to see it too.

One of the ladies told me that I was a Black woman on the inside. I asked her how she knew that. She said it was obvious by the way I sing and dance just like them.  It made my hear t happy to hear that.

The last day of the conference, we went to a Lodge. They had many different animals there, some in cages and some not. I got to pet and play with baby lions and tigers. I rode around in a jeep to see full grown lions and tigers. I had a herd of buffalo walk by me and an ostrich who gave me a funny look. After seeing all the animals, we watched a stunning performance of Limpopo traditional dancers and fire dancers.

My greatest prayer for the dear people I met is that they would be able to teach the youth of their churches and schools the important messages they learned. There is so much pain in Africa because of sex and HIV.

If you want to listen to “Grandma’s village”, you can go to http://www.twr360.org/ministry/61/ or on the TWR360 app under Kerus It Takes Courage.  They are about 30 minutes long each. Enjoy!

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My friend Hanna and me

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I had to hang off the back of a jeep to go see the big animals

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The man carrying many burdens

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