Living Social Justice

A blog about responding to poverty and injustice, everyday and in all sorts of ways

Archive for the month “February, 2013”

TWD in Under 2 Min (video)

Still wondering what TWD is all about? Watch this awesome video, complete with pretty pictures and a panda bear on a bicycle, for a step-by-step guide…

If you’re struggling to think up an idea, why not check out this list of TWD team challenges? If something strikes your fancy, fill out the form here to sign up. It’s as easy as that!

We Are Not Afraid of God’s Face

Photo Credit: una cierta mirada via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: una cierta mirada via Compfight cc

In the wake of the horrific rape and murder of Anene Booysen, Nathalie Koenig chatted to the women at Sisters Incorporated to hear what they had to say about the abuse of women in this country.

I once asked God to show me His face. It was one of those repeated pleas – “Show me your face Lord. Showmeyourfaceshowmeyourface”. And He showed me the faces of some children I knew. Women I knew. Friends. Family members. Now looking at a snapped ID photo of Anene Booysen, I’m unsettled by the earnestness of her expression. And am asking again for God to show me His face. And I think that He is.

On 2 February, 17-Year old Anene Booysen was gang-raped and mutilated in Bredasdorp.  She died later in hospital, after identifying one of her attackers. (For the full story, click here)

Upon reading or hearing of Anene’s story, many of us may have been shocked or saddened, but how many of us would have responded with the thought “It could have been me”?

This was one woman’s response at Sisters Incorporated. Sisters Incorporated, one of Common Good’s partner organisations, is a shelter in Kenilworth that provides a place of safety and healing to vulnerable women. The residents of Sisters all have stories, as do countless other women in our city, and our nation.

Anene’s story is not one that stands alone.

Read more…

Three Wishes For A Princess (1 minute)

If you do one thing today, watch this moving clip captured by Richard Bolland from the Common Ground New Hope Street and Shelter Ministry team.

Here’s what this lady, who wishes to remain anonymous, had to say when asked what she would want if she had three wishes…

For more info on how to get involved in the street and shelter ministry, email info@commongood.org.za. You can also check out the Common Ground New Hope Facebook page here!

Time for a Quick Attitude Check

The That Was Different (TWD) campaign is a fun and exciting way of raising funds for Common Good’s employment and education initiatives, but how do we do it the right way and with the right heart? Terran Williams gives a biblical perspective on the campaign.

TWD helpers Adele and Keegan get carried away for the right reasons!

TWD helpers Adele and Keegan get carried away for the right reasons!

One of the concerns about TWD is that it feels like you’re showing off. If you read Matthew 6, Jesus is very cautious about us giving with our left hand not knowing what our right hand is doing. Jesus says that we shouldn’t do our acts of righteousness to be seen by people.

Some people are concerned that this means you shouldn’t do anything “show-offy”, but there is another way of thinking about it. Matthew 5:16, just the chapter before, says, “In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” The reality is that if we are doing this challenge with the attitude of “Look at me I’m so amazing” than Jesus does have something to say to us. We forfeit our heavenly reward and it doesn’t please God in heaven, although it’s not technically wrong in itself.

But if we do it with a Matthew 5:16 attitude and we say, “I love God and God loves the marginalised people of our city and because of that I want to do this and shine some of his goodness into this world”, then we’re absolutely doing it with the right heart!

There is also another motive to do it which is that it’s just a load of fun! And besides, there are so many of us doing it all on the same day, that even if you were doing it for yourself people wouldn’t really be noticing that you’re extra amazing! So let’s do it for God with Matthew 5:16 as our motive.

– Terran is a part of the leadership team at Common Ground Church.

Using Your Gifts for God’s Glory

You may not think you’re particularly gifted or talented, but, guess what? You are! And God has a plan to use your unique abilities for a purpose far greater than you could imagine. By Sam Rawson

Photo Credit: polkadotandplaid via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: polkadotandplaid via Compfight cc

When I was about 15 I attended a workshop about “discovering your spiritual gifts” with my mom. At first, I was a bit dubious about the whole experience. After all, what exactly were “spiritual gifts”? I somewhat begrudgingly took part, thinking, “What can they teach me about myself that I don’t already know?” I was in for a surprise. During the sessions, I began to get an understanding of the concept of gifts and talents which differed from the worldview I’d picked up from school and friends.

I’d grown up thinking that certain kids were gifted and others were not. You had the sports heroes and the academic medallists – and then the rest of the class. If your gifts or talents didn’t fall into certain categories it was easy as a child to believe that you didn’t have anything particularly special to offer. Thankfully, I had very affirming parents so I knew that I was good at some things, but it was sometimes hard to give them any weight in the eyes of the world, which made so much of certain things and so little of others.

From the workshop, I began to realise that God had given me a unique bundle of gifts, talents and abilities to be used for his purposes. The greatest revelation? Even if the rest of the world didn’t recognise my gifts as particularly special, the Creator who designed me did. And he had a plan to use them that far exceeded my own imagination. It was the start of a journey of discovering and basing my identity in Christ and not in the shiny and supposedly ‘important’ things of this world.

Read more…

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