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Do not succumb to fear and confusion


The year ahead will present us with many opportunities. Many of these opportunities will, however, present themselves in the form of disturbing and often very unfavourable circumstances. However, we need to look beyond these circumstances in order to be receptive for blessings originating from sources where we least expect it:

I will give you treasures of darkness, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the Lord, the Lord of Israel, who called you by name”. Isaiah 45:3

What is generally known as ‘transformation’, aimed at empowering a certain ‘class’ or ‘group’ of people, historically and currently, is not empowerment at all. In the long run it always achieves exactly the opposite. To be on the wrong side of this kind of empowerment is, however, generally perceived as a huge threat – both to business and to certain ‘classes’ or ‘groups’ of individuals. Surprisingly, especially in the long run, this is not a threat at all; on the contrary, this is a huge opportunity.

The ‘transformational’ fight is presented as a fight for the rich resources of South Africa. This, however, is not the case. It is much rather a fight over ‘the scraps’, the ‘left-overs’, the stuff lying around on the surface which is envied by so many, but which causes so much strife, uncertainty and deep unhappiness among just as many.

Real wealth, which is not to be found on the surface (“… where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal …”), comes from God – His blessing, His wisdom and His strength.

Those privileged to be denied access to the deceiving benefit of this ‘cheap’ wealth, will be compelled to search for real wealth in areas unbeknown to those chasing and competing for that which is lying around on the surface.

On the Mount of Olives, in Jesus’ darkest hour, just before the most important EVENT in the history of the universe, Jesus told His disciples: “Pray that you will not fall into temptation”.

Without taking anything away from the deeper meaning of this piece in scripture, a very real form of temptation many South Africans will face in the year lying ahead and beyond, is the temptation of fear and discouragement. The issues we are facing present themselves as being insurmountable. That, however, is a lie. We need to see it for what it is; we need to see it through God’s eyes: insignificant in comparison to His unlimited power.

Pray for that wisdom; and for the ability to distinguish between fake and reality.

Gerhard Papenfus