January 25, 2014
Ngudza, Venda, South Africa
ccm Cross #0057
GPS/DNS 28° 28′ 45.35″ S 24° 40′ 21.77″
Additional pictures are below the Testimony:
3463 cdd Up in Smoke
Cyber Daily Devotion
Volume 15 Number 027
Today’s Author: Pastor Bill
Scripture: Psalm 39:11
“When you put us through the fire to purge us from our sin, our dearest idols go up in smoke” MSG
My name is Pastor Madida and with my wife Avhapfani Timna Madida (We call her A.T.) we Pastor in the Ngudza, Venda area in Northern South Africa. This is our ccm cross Testimony.
I grew up in Venda with my mom, dad and five sisters. I was the oldest. We were a church going family and my father died before my teenage years. Mom was our guide post and we managed to get by. In church we learned all the Bible stories and they talked about what was right and wrong but I didn’t quite get their connection to Jesus.
Then in high school I attended a revival in our town. The preacher talked about the Resurrection of Jesus and that everyone who goes to heaven must be saved first. This was news to me. I thought everyone went to heaven. Just be good and God opened the door.
I learned that no one — I mean no one is good enough. I learned it took my belief in Jesus Christ as savior in my life to receive a ticket to heaven. The preacher also introduced me to hell. It is a real place and the consequences of not believing in Jesus as my savior was hell. He laid out my two choices — Heaven or Hell — and the Holy Spirit opened my eyes that were tightly shut. I chose Jesus and Heaven and never looked back.
The Holy Spirit opened my spiritual eyes and then directed me to a man of God named Baaa Baaa Ntombela. He came to town with a revival team and I joined in with the group. There I met A.T. who was a member of the worship team. The entire revival was a spiritually uplifting experience as we were fed the word of God in ways I had never heard before. I hungered for more.
I started attending the Maranatha Church in Ngwenani and took in all my mentors could show me. Within a few years I was the youth minister for the church and the Holy Spirit was directing my every move. The church grew and as it grew so did my leadership responsibility. I married A.T. and together we ministered as the Lord led. We have been married 30 plus years with four children ages 26, 24, 17 and 10.
Our strength as a church is prayer. When people have needs we pray about them and the Lord sends answers.
When someone is sick we pray for healing and wait to hear the good report. It comes.
When there are school, money or marriage problems. We pray for the problem and wait to hear the good report. It comes.
When there is a job crises we pray. Then wait to hear the good report. It comes.
A good report comes disguised in ways we could not imagine. But I know the Lord answers prayer.
In our own life we left for work one Friday morning — I went to my Agricultural Department office and A.T. traveled to the school where she teaches. When we returned that evening our entire house and all our family’s belongings were burned up — they were up in smoke.
Our first reaction to the fire that destroyed our house was anger and we cried. That was Friday night. By Sunday morning our entire family was in church praising God that none of us were home during the fire. We learned over the next few months to hold on to Jesus. All things will eventually pass away but our relationship to Jesus will never pass away. This experience has brought new insights into the Book of Job and Book of Jeremiah in the Bible. And it readily became clear to us that the Lord knew us before we were even born and He alone knows what is best for us.
After the fire we found special relationships developed with others, as we were the beneficiaries of new furniture, financial gifts and the realization that in the midst of tragedy God is above everything.
My favorite Bible verse is the forgiveness of the Lord that can be found in Psalm 32:1-2 “Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, Whose sin is covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no deceit” NKJV
Because of the Cross my sins are forgiven and blood washed — how could I ask for anything more. Jesus paid the price for me once and for all.
This Cross planted is a reminder to our entire community that Jesus lives and all are welcome here to worship and enjoy His peace. Our goal is to never look back at sin and save as many as possible for Jesus is returning soon — very soon. Maranatha!
Pastors Bill and Carol your sacrifice to bring this cross to us is something we will never, ever forget. Thank you.
Prayer: Father thank you for answering prayers in ways we never could have imagined. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!
We parked the car and walked 1/4 mile to church
Pastor Carol on the road!
Along our way we met village children enjoying
a mango from the neighbors tree
Ngudza village where church is located
Preparing the hole
The Calvary arrives in a 4 wheel drive truck
Removing protective wrap from Cross beams
Attaching nuts and bolts
Moving cement near the hole
Lifting Cross toward hole
Everyone helped out
Lining up cross
Everything ready — then 3 days of rain!
When the area dries up and the Cross is planted we will
be posting additional pictures.
To God be all the Glory!
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