Time to work on that temple…!

Splish splash… Somebody grab that boy a shirt!

Before I tell you why I decided to post this very unflattering and topless picture of my young self, I want to share with you a recent conversation I had with my parents which made me laugh so hard. As you may know, I am a huge football fan and my favourite team is Manchester United. One of my favourite players who plays for the club is a certain lad called Paul Pogba (You might have heard of himπŸ™ƒ). So this one time I was watching a game, with my folks, in which Manchester United were playing against a team called Cardiff City and they happened to win that game. After the match, Paul Pogba took of his shirt, like he always does (revealing a very chiselled torso), and handed it to a young fan in the stands. The moment he took of his shirt I said, sternly, to my folks: “See… Now that’s the type of body I want to have!” My dad looked at my mom with a huge smirk on his face and said: “Your son wants to look like Pogba but hardly ever exercises!” after which we all started laughing uncontrollably. πŸ˜‚

We all know how January is the peak month for new gym memberships and how everyone has made resolutions to start working out or atleast start eating healthily. Usually – about the third week in – people, sadly, start abandoning their resolutions and revert to their unhealthy, sedentary lifestyles. I too am guilty of this and have abandoned many fitness plans after a few weeks just because I wasnt seeing the desired results.

However, I’m adamant that this is the year all that changes! As you can see from the pic I put up, I’ve always been a skinny fella and I still haven’t quite filled my frame: I’m what gym rats might call a “hard gainer”. It takes me a long time to gain muscle mass and that has often discouraged me from pursuing my fitness goals. However, that’s not reason enough for me to quit trying! That’s actually more reason for me to put in extra work so that I may see better results in the future. In case you’re reading this and wondering why you should not give up on embarking on a fitness journey, here is some motivation:

πŸ• 1 Corinthians 16: 19 – 20 – “Don’t you know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit…?” Your body is a dwelling place for God’s Holy Spirit – if that isn’t reason enough for you to start living better then I’m lost for words. “You are not your own, you were bought at a price.” – That’s verse 20. If God is the landlord of our earthly vessels, why aren’t we being good tenants by taking good care of our bodies? Think about that.

😍 Psalm 139: 14 – “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful – I know that full well.” – God actually took His time creating you – He prides himself with His creation. Least you can do is to start loving yourself as well. I know how usually when we talk about body positivity we always talk about women but men can be insecure about their looks and bodies as well (sorry for being a sell out fellas!). Take me for example: It took me a while to accept my lanky, slender built because I had convinced myself that unless one looks like Jason Statham or Hugh Jackman, they are an inferior male. It was all in my mind! I, actually, am the workmanship of God! There’s no one else on this earth who can beat me at BEING ME! The moment I started accepting myself, I noticed even my confidence level picked up! Love yourself!

πŸ™ James 1: 3 – “Because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” One thing that has been a hindrance in me achieving my fitness goals is my lack of faith or belief in my own dreams. Sometimes I think about how I’d like to have a chiselled chest, great obliques, broad shoulders and major quads but then I find myself second guessing my ability to reach that vision. That’s what this bible verse means by “testing of faith”. It is during those moments of doubts and second-guessing that my faith is supposed to shine through – Now that’s what perseverance is all about! Set attainable fitness and wellness goals and work hard towards achieving them… It is possible!

May this be the year you finally start investing in your mental health, spiritual health and physical health as well. If you can imagine it, you can achieve it! Start small with a five minute jog or twenty crunches a day and work your way up to increase your endurance. If you start today, you will thank yourself in three months time.

I hope this has encouraged you to start pursuing that body and mind you’ve always wanted! πŸ™‚

If you love your temple, you are halfway there to improving it!
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Why Jesus’ second coming should not be slept on…

I recently, on New Year’s Eve, had an interesting conversation with one of my brothers from church who told me how the message of the second coming of Christ has been awakened a lot in his heart lately: I won’t go into much detail about what he shared but what the brother told me about this matter really moved me and served as a confirmation of a burden that’s been in my heart ever since I got saved.

When I had just got born again, the message of Jesus’ second coming would fill my heart with so much fear – this is me just being honest right now. Everytime I’d think about the rapture of the saints I’d always think about how I wouldn’t want to be left behind and how terrifying it would be not to be raptured while God’s redeemed are caught up in the sky. It is only now that I realised that what I thought was fear was actually my heart telling me to ready myself for the wonderful occassion.

Before I continue any further, I know some of you might be reading this message thinking: “Why is the message of Jesus’ second coming even relevant? Don’t we have much more important things we should be worrying ourselves with?” – well, I’ve got news for you: Christ’s second coming is going to be THEE happening of eternity! 2 Peter 3 verses three to four speaks about how in the last days there will emerge “scoffers” who will be like: “When is this second coming? Our ancestors have long come and gone but Jesus hasnt returned yet!”. The reality is that no matter how much we might put it off, we know that Jesus IS the soon coming King.

Will you be ready when the trumpet sounds to signal the second coming of Christ?

The reason I’m writing about this issue is because I have noticed how so many, including myself, are so caught up in worldly affairs that we seem to be forgetting that one day, we will all give an account before God. I painted this scenario in my head which really had me deep in thought: say for example I established a business and just when it started making record profits, Christ appeared. Or maybe I’m about to marry the woman of my dreams, and just when I’m about to say my vows- Christ appeared! Think about this two scenarios for a second: we live in a world that’s so focused on itself that the message of Jesus Christ’s second coming has been reduced to an event that would probably be untimely or inconvinient for so many of us. A lot of us are not excited about this inevitable occasion: we live like our time on earth is permanent and that we will not one day have to give account to God for our actions.

As we have just begun a new year, I have a message to both the saved and unsaved person who might still be reading this text: A lifetime filled with the best that the world has to offer is nothing compared to an eternity spent with Jesus in heaven. This is the year that you should start putting first things first: your soul comes first. Have you recieved Jesus Christ as your Lord and personal savior? He is the only mediator between God and mankind; He is the way truth and life; He is the solution to all the problems you are facing today. Accept Him into your life, and you will have your name written into the book of life so that you too, one day, will be caught up with the saints. Recieving Him is as easy as asking Him to enter your heart and confessing your sins unto Him. Ask him to change your heart and character and he will trade your heavy yolk for a lighter one. Maybe your reading this and your already saved: this is your wake-up call!!! Tell as many people as you can about the coming of Jesus and start living a life that is pleasing unto Him.

I do realise that this text will not be well recieved by all but I want you all to know that I write this message with love and respect for everyone. It is my utmost desire to one day experience the beauty of heaven with everyone who reads this message. Be blessed. Remember there is jubilation in Heaven when one person gives their life to Christ – I also believe that there is great jubilation in heaven when one soul returns to Christ. Be blessed.

Knowing Christ is knowing peace and being reassured that when the trumpet sounds, you too shall be caught up to meet Him.

Why you should be optimistic about this coming year…

Better times are ahead…!

I was reading the book of John chapter 5 which talks about the incident of the man who was disabled for 38 years and was stationed at the pool of Bethesda. Imagine such a predicament: Been disabled for such a long time and not knowing when your change will come. The man mentioned to Jesus how everytime he wanted to step inside the pool during its stirring, someone else would go in ahead of him.

β€œSir,” the invalid replied, β€œI have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”
John 5:7 NIV

How many of us can relate with this man’s predicament? Just when you conjured up the courage to propose marriage to your loved one, someone else stepped in ahead of you; just when you thought you are about to recieve that promotion at work, an external applicant got the post you wanted; Just when you thought you will get that business loan from the bank, someone else intervened and you didn’t get it! So many occasions and so many years have gone by where you have somehow been overlooked by fortune despite confessing that “This is my year!” every January. Like the sick man at Bethesda, just when you are about to be made whole, someone overtakes you.

I am no man of cloth, neither am I a prophet by calling but I am a born again, Spirit-filled, imperfect but forgiven child of God who is about to tell you good news! Thirty eight years of heartbreak, denial and rejection can all change because of one encounter with Jesus!

No, you don’t need “good luck” to face 2019, neither do you need “the stars” to align in your favour. All you need is simply one encounter with Jesus. Like the lame man at the pool of Bethesda, tell Him how you have been toiling for all these past years and are in need of His intervention. He holds the key to heaven and hell: surely He also holds the keys to your breakthrough, healing, promotion and many more! Life and death lie in the power of your tongue: stop being pessimistic because of experiences from your past and start approaching life with optimism – your best is yet to come! The key to your altitude is your attitude: envision greatness and you will be great!

  • This new year is all about setting goals and working tirelessly to achieve them!
  • This new year is all about leaving procastination and self doubt behind!
  • This new year is all about learning to smile at the storm because you know Jesus is on the boat!

May you and your family be blessed in this coming year 2019: thank you for being part of my story.

Wishing you a happy New Year!

Remembering the CHRIST in CHRISTmas… ✝

Merry Christmas everyone!

“Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is God with us.” – Matthew 1: 23

Jesus Christ’s birth happened more than 2000 years ago but it’s significance is still great even today. Not only does His birth remind us of how God so loved us so much that He gave us the ultimate gift of salvation (John 3:16), it also reminds us of the importance of spending time with our loved ones and family. Jesus is the reason for the season: the significance of His birth should not be undermined or forgotten.

My festive wishes for you and your family?

Well…

✝May God increase you in all areas of your being.

✝May God give you great health and wealth (Remember that true wealth is knowing and receiving Jesus Christ as your Lord and personal Saviour.).

✝ May God bless you with fresh inspiration, motivation and will to do better and be better. Your business, academics and personal life will flourish this coming year.

✝ May you learn how to love like Jesus Christ does this season. To know love is to know Christ.

✝ May God heal all the wounds that you might have incurred in 2018. That heartbreak, retrenchment, rejection and humiliation will be your testimony throughout the coming year.

✝ May God be your light and illuminate every path you should take in the coming year. Include God in all your plans in the coming year and watch your plans flourish.

Much love…

From Blessing.

Renewed life… Renewed mind and Renewed purpose: God gives all freely!

I remember there was a period in my life where I struggled to get up in the mornings: I was so unmotivated all the time and would quite literally watch as my life passed me by. My mom would always say: “Tshego… Sebodu se ke polaisha go duma babangwe!” meaning “A lazy person will always envy others.”

This picture was taken in December of 2011: one of the darkest periods of my life.

It took me a while but God finally took me out of that bad rut of depression and I’m now a much more motivated and hard working person. I’m still dealing with the consequences of those unproductive years of my life but I thank God because He has proven to be my sun and shield. Usually when Christians speak about God’s ability to heal, we often limit God’s power to certain illnesses. For instance, we happily credit God for healing our headaches and colds but quickly grow sceptical when someone speaks of how God healed them of depression or any other chronic illness. I remember last year, a Christian on Twitter spoke about how God can heal HIV and AIDS and it was front page news! Our faith in God as a nation has been reduced to the point that people will even question your sanity when you speak of God’s power. No situation is beyond God’s saving power! No man, machine or god can “renew the mind” and heal like God can.

Today I just want to make you aware of God’s power to save you from the self-sabotaging effects of depression. Maybe you’re reading this and are frustrated at all the opportunities you have missed due to laziness or even fear of failure: you’re not a lost cause! God can set you free from that oppressive, destiny-delaying spirit if you let Him. As we are about to enter a new year, I want you to do this:

↗️ Believe in your God given potential to be great.

↗️Find out which life path you should be taking. Laziness and demotivation are usually caused by misplaced effort.

↗️ Enter into prayer warfare. The devil is all out to choke your will to live and do well for yourself. Fight him through prayer warefare! As written on the book of Ephesians chapter 6, our battle is against principalities and rulers of this dark world. Most manifestations we see in the physical world are just after effects of the spiritual world. Take up your battle amour: with God on our side, the battle is already won!

↗️ Make positive affirmations about yourself. Tell yourself you are the best, because, honestly speaking, you really are!

↗️ Surround yourself with people who believe in your God-given potential and feed you motivation. Winning is contagious and keeping company with positive-minded people will quickly rub off you.

I speak energy and zeal into your life today! Go ahead and chase your dreams this upcoming year… You can make it!

The Christian and the environment πŸŒ³πŸŒ

Random fact about me: I’ve always had a passion for photography and believe sometimes pictures speak louder than words. I’m very observant to my surroundings and like visiting different places just to marvel at God’s creation.

So this one day I was working in Zebediela and when I had to catch a taxi home, I saw what must have been one of the saddest sights I have seen this year.

Scenes like these are common in South African townships.

I think that a lot of people think that Christianity is all about going to church, giving your tithes and not swearing. I believe that as a saved young or old person, you are were placed on earth, in your community for a divine purpose. When God created man in the book of Genesis chapter 1, he instructed humankind to subdue the earth. To subdue means to “overcome, quieten or bring under control”. Certain things that we are witnessing today like global warming and pollution are because we have no been obeying that simple instruction.

I believe that each and every person who loves God should also love His creation and do all they can to conserve it. Usually when people here the word conservation they automatically think about big sponsored campaigns which promote green living. Sometimes conserving the environment just entails us cleaning up after ourselves. Let us, at all costs, avoid littering and try by all means to reuse and recycle. Sadly though, in our townships we do not have a lot of recycling firms so we just end up making piles and piles of litter. I believe we should and can be the change that we want to see one day. Our townships can turn into world class tourist destinations if we take better care of them.

Reading the book of Titus chapter 2 verse 7, the Bible instructs us as Christians to set an example in everything that we do. Let us start taking care of our surroundings and making sure they are presentable. Bringing change can start with something as small as picking up litter and using water more sparingly. It starts with you and me!

If we take better care of our environment, we will be rewarded with breathtaking sights such as this one.

Celebrating one of the strongest women I’ve ever known: Grandma Dorothy Maraba (1932-2018)

On the 11 December 2018 at 09:30am, my beloved grandma drew her final breath. She had been in a very dismal state for the last couple of weeks however I kept telling myself we still had more time with her. When my mom broke the news to me over the phone, so many emotions came flooding! Although I was somewhat relieved that Gugu is finally at peace: I found myself sad that my last memory of her was a very sad one.

Gugu was one of the strongest women I’ve ever encountered: she raised my mom and her siblings whilst grandad was working in Johannesburg. I don’t recall ever visiting grandma’s place in my childhood and finding no food on the stove! No visitor ever came into her house and left with an empty stomach. That just shows that she was a caregiver and loved everyone effortlessly.

Gugu wasn’t only a great caregiver but she was an awesome wife to my Granddad. My grandad always would refer to her as “Dor” which is short for “Dorothy” and that would just light up Grandma’s face. They were married for over 60 years but they continued to be the best of friends. If I can be blessed with just a fragment of the type of love that my grandparents shared, I’d be so happy.

Whenever we visited grandma’s place and it was time to leave, we always sang a hymn and made a short prayer. She loved hymns so much: I will definitely miss her beautiful soprano voice which always harmonised so perfectly with each song. Gugu loved the Lord so much: she got saved as a senior citizen but never looked back. When she was healthy and fit, she’d never be seen at home on a Sunday because she’d be at church.

Living in a world without my Grandma is a terrifying thought but we know that she is in a better place now and awaits the rapture of the Saints. What a comforting knowledge: one day we shall meet again Grandma, and there will be no more pain or suffering.

Here’s to Gugu Maraba: farewell great woman!

Even in old age, grandma’s beauty never faded.

Grandma and Grandpa were real couple goals.
We will miss you grandma!