Heather was here.

Last week I spent 4 days with my friend Heather. Heather and I have been friends/sisters for nearly 6 years. I met her when she lived and worked in Malalane South Africa with an organisation that helps orphans through music. She returned to the USA 4 years ago but when time and work allow her to do so, she travels to South Africa to visit “her children.”

Heather and her girls
Heather and her girls

Sometimes she runs camps for them but this year she met her kids at Hhusha Hhusha GuestPackers ( pronounced whosha-whosha). It was a time of getting know how each one was doing on a one on one basis.  Heather has known some of these teenagers from the ages of 6, all see her as mother and she is committed to seeing them all succeed in life.  All her kids have had and still have very difficult lives,  and now as adulthood approaches for some, tough choices lie ahead. They live in one of the poorest communities in South Africa which has more than 40% HIV and AIDS rate.

Not only is Thando a beautiful girl, she has an AMAZING voice!
Not only is Thando a beautiful girl, she has an AMAZING voice!

Bonginkosi jumping into the pool whilst Zuzmuzi watches. Bonginkosi has one of the gentlest, purest hearts I have observed in a young man and Zuz is the life a the party 🙂 The teens enjoyed their time at Hhusha Hhusha immensely, a couple of days away from their normal lives was a welcome change.

The boys slept in tents whilst the girls were in the house.
The boys slept in tents whilst the girls were in the house.

Bonginkosi giving Shirley a grand tour of the boys sleeping quarters.

Late afternoon chats.
Late afternoon chats with the different mentors that were with Heather and I.

This week, through a series of unexpected events, I found myself experiencing what life is like for some middle class and upper class women in South Africa. I spent 3 days following these women on their unending shopping sprees from morning till late afternoon. It was complete culture shock for me. From my simple observations there was only one rule to all the shopping madness: you never ever have enough.

I asked if any of them spent one day a week doing some sort of volunteer work for the less fortunate the answer was pretty straight forward: “no.”  I was so saddened when I heard this, these people have the means and more importantly the reason (Jesus) to step out and help someone who would never help them back and yet they choose everyday not to …
Shirley is a teenage mom to Luthando. I was very impressed at what an awesome mom she is to her adorable baby girl.
Shirley is a teenage mom to Luthando. I was very impressed to see what an awesome and responsible mom she is to her adorable baby girl.

I guess I am naïve friend, I must be crazy to think as a christian such a self-absorbed lifestyle is worthless and meaningless. All they do is make a nice christian bubble and make sure at all cost they don’t ever take the time to step out of their comfort zone and be the difference…Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think everyone is meant to sell all they have and give it to the poor or live the life that Heather lives BUT as christians it’s not “rocket science” we are called to live a life that is selfless in every way.

Her boys
Her boys

As I write this I have such a heavy heart …  if there ever comes a time were I slowly fall into this self indulging lifestyle I pray I have a good friend not afraid to remind me of what matters most.

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 Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even non christians love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even non christians do that.Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. ~Jesus.

Luthando, (pronounced Lootandow) cute and tiny for 4 months :)
Luthando, (pronounced Lootandow) cute and tiny for 4 months 🙂
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