2023 · Priest's Perspective

From the Priest’s Perspective: (July)

Greetings in Jesus’ name,

It’s been a busy but wonderful 2 months with you all, lots of pushing and pulling, lots of

encouragement, and some good lessons learned. Two very different but exciting Parishes, twice the amount of work but also twice the amount of love and support. Thank you all…I am so grateful for you all, young and the not so old 🙂

If today I had to ask you to describe how you are or were feeling this week or in general, in 3 words, what would your response be?
My response would be Completely Overwhelmed but Grateful (4 I know)…

It’s consistently been a tough couple of months for me personally but that being said, I am also

extremely mindful of the fact that everyone, no matter who you are, or what you do, we are all taking immense strain and we are struggling, some silently and others not so silently.

We are struggling; some with illness, most people with the spiraling cost of food, petrol, the interest rate (thank God for a break at the last meeting), some with our children, some with our parents, and some with our mental health. That is the reality of life and so yes it is ok to not be ok for it is here that our Lord meets us.

As Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha (2 Kings 6:16-18). God not only saved Elisha and his servant that day; He saved the entire Aramean force too, the king of Israel, and sent them home without the loss of a single life.

We are sometimes like the servant, well that’s true for me most of the time, we don’t see the whole picture and we assume the worst. Today, I want to encourage us to pray the prayer that Elisha prayed for ourselves, just 3 words, “Open my eyes or open our eyes”, so that we to can see beyond our pain and our struggles, to see what it is that God is preparing us for. In order for us to be used by God we must first be refined, fashioned, and shaped so that when we get through them we can know with

absolute certainty that God never once left us, that He was not just carrying us through but more than likely dragging us through in His loving arms.

I pray that God will open our eyes to the truth, to the struggles that everyone faces around us, to God, for who He is to us and for us. That God will open our eyes to the corruption and power struggles not just in government but also in the church, He will open our eyes to the young people who are

struggling to cope, open our eyes to those who are being abused and have to be silent because they have nowhere to go, OPEN OUR EYES, LORD.

Open our eyes, Lord, so that we make the right decisions, for our families, our church families, and our communities. Open our eyes to move in the direction that God is calling us to and to acknowledge the paths we need to turn back from that are causing pain and suffering to us and others.

Lord, You who have set the trajectory of our lives, open our eyes so that we may allow Your plan and purpose to be fulfilled, open our eyes…Just three words, “open our eyes” If we allow God the chance, He will turn our fears into opportunities, our disappointments into blessings, our despair into hope, our defeats into victories, our sadness into joy, and our mourning into dancing.


Perhaps, as we move into August when we celebrate our Women, we could and should ask God to open our eyes to what it is He wants us to see and with His help be courageous enough to make the changes necessary.

Blessings upon blessings,
Rev Deborah

2023 · Priest's Perspective

From the Priest’s Perspective: (June)

Greetings in Jesus’ mighty name.

Hard to believe it’s been a month already and what an awesome privilege it has been to meet you all and to slowly start getting to know you all at Church of the Good Shepherd and St Mary’s.

To be absolutely honest I was, and still am a little terrified of having to lead not 1 but 2 churches,  I didn’t quite know if I wanted to run or thank Bishop Nkosinathi for the challenge, opportunity, and privilege he has given me but by God’s grace and mercy we have all survived thus far. I continue to hear the Holy Spirit saying I want you to be who I created you to be …. so with that in mind I have forged ahead…

There are some really great people who have come alongside me to help and guide me, to encourage me, and sometimes to challenge me but always God leading, guiding, and directing me. If I can continue to hold the church and my job in tandem it will be

because I have with God’s help, a great support system, and so I constantly rely on you all to work together with me to be who God has called us to be here in this part of His vineyard.

It can be tough and tiring but it is also gratifying, I am amazed at how much I had learned over the years and how it is all coming together as I lead you all … I had planned from the side for so long but now it is my turn to lead as God is directing and it is a humbling but amazing experience.

We have made it through a month, I have felt loved, welcomed, and appreciated and I am grateful to God that He led me to be placed here … I am grateful for the respect

afforded me, I stand in awe of how great God is but what amazes me even more is that He continues to use a sinner like me to be your SERVANT LEADER …

There will be some changes coming:

  • 1. The first and third Sunday of the month Rev Peta will start the services at St Mary’s, giving me an opportunity to spend some precious time with the people of Good Shepherd
  • 2. The last Sunday of the month at St Mary’s will be a child-centered service
  • 3. A “Breath a Prayer” WhatsApp group will be started soon and you will be invited to join, this will be explained further soon.

Watch this space for more Godly-inspired additions to our services and community. I look forward to hearing your ideas and comments as together we build on the platform that has already been created by God and the past Rectors.

Blessings upon blessings,

Rev Deborah

Priest's Perspective

Priests Perspective – Feast of St Anthony

Two significant things today, as I return to work for 2022. It is the feast of St Anthony the founder of the religious life, and the Old Testament reading is Isaiah 40 1-8; calling to make straight the paths of the Lord. These opening lines of Trito Isaiah are a calling us to look to the future and the coming of Jesus as the saviour of the world, and end to Exile and hopelessness. It would be a long, long time till this actually happened but, as Christians, we are called to live in the hope of salvation and deliverance and speak that hope into the world even while the world still languishes in darkness. this is the calling to the religious life, a way of living in hope, trusting God and being fully devoted to Him.

I just read that the State of Disaster has been extended another month in South Africa which means that the Command Council can still pass regulations in an extraordinary fashion. Despite our desire for this season of Corona Virus to be over, it is still very much with us. Omnicron may not be as severe as previous variants, but it is still debilitating and can be recurring. Many people are still suffering the ill effects of contracting the virus.

And so we are called to perseverance. We are called to Hope. Scripture implores us to not tire of doing good ( Gal 6:9) but to dedicate ourselves to the work of disciples. Disciples of Jesus’s love, hope, peace and joy. Today’s Gospel is Mark 10: 17-21 which is the story of the Rich young man. It is this text that St Francis took literally and gave away all his earthly wealth and status and imitated the life of Christ. The question for us is, what do we need to “set aside” in our lives to be more devoted to and centred on Christ? What do we need to clear from our minds, our desires and our aims and objectives for life, that stands in the way of God having control and setting the direction of our lives?

I am so encouraged by the words of Jesus who says ” with humankind this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” Mark 10:27.

As I dive into ministry for 2022 there are many things that I have no idea how I am going to overcome.  The challenges are great. But God reminds us today that He is in control, we can trust him. When we trust in our own abilities, desires, success, we will fall short. When we set our own agenda’s and plans, we will fail. But when we submit to the will of God, when we allow ourselves to be used for His purposes, then we will attain real life.

How wonderful it is to know that our success on earth is not in the wealth and status of this world, but in the “Life of Christ.”

Today I submit myself again to be used by Christ for His purposes.

Our Morning prayer Old Testament ( Gen 8:6-22) continues with this liberating theme – Noah is called to come out of the ark, but he has to wait for the time to be right. He sends out a dove three times. The Dove is a symbol of peace and we are called today to reach out in peace and speak God’s peace over the world, a world submerged in the deep waters of its problems and challenges.  When the Dove returns Noah does not give up he waits, and then sends it again. And when it returns he waits and he sends it again, until the time is right.

Today let us send God’s peace ahead of us, into the world, into every situation you face. Perhaps your peace will return to you, and it will be unsettling, but wait upon the Lord and send it out again, keeping sending keep sowing, make straight the paths, you are a voice calling out in the wilderness of Life, a message of hope, in the turmoil of life.

In the words of Hebrews 4: 14b “let us hold firmly to the hope we profess,  and 16: ” approach the throne of grace with confidence, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”

“Comfort ,comfort my people says the Lord” ( Is 40:1) for all things are possible with God ( (Mark 27b). Let us therefore, enter this day with courage and renewed hope and trust in our God.

The God who has called us is faithful and He will not fail us!

Feast of St Anthony.


Freedom Day – Overcoming the Barriers of the past. 27 April 2021

One of the greatest challenges that we have in life is moving beyond what we know and what we have gained control of and tamed. We are an entitled generation believing that we are owed something, we deserve, we have gained for ourselves the freedom from the past. And yet we are stuck in it. The Scripture says “we have not been given a Spirit that leads us back into the spirit of fear” meaning that our mindsets can negate that which Christ has given us because our minds stay trapped even when we have been set free.  I am not a political analyst and the South African Freedom Day that is celebrated is important – but Freedom comes from salvation alone. So today we celebrate a political Freedom that cannot truly set us free. Only God through forgiveness can set us free.

In the New Testament Scriptures, we read of how the Jews had worked out how to please God by obeying a set of Rules. They had their religious observances and ceremonies and practices, and Jesus had corrected them where they had misused Scriptures and where they had made it about the wrong things. But for 1st Century Christians “The Way” was a new Jewish Cult, for  Jews who had realized that Jesus was the fulfilment of their Scriptures and that he was the establishment of the new kingdom – a new kingdom that looked just like the old kingdom but it had Jesus in it. A new kingdom where we did the same things and just said in Jesus name at the end.

A new kingdom that was now approved by God and one that allowed us to say – ‘Lord in Jesus Name we ask that you hear us and set us free because you promised to hear us when we pray in your name.’ In the book of Acts, we find a people set free but stuck in the past, who said to Peter – you are breaking the law – if people want to follow Jesus, they must be Jews first. They were using Jesus to legitimize their religion, and not submitting to Jesus to transform their lives.

The battle continues today – Liberals use Jesus to legitimize their demands, they want the non-condemnation that Jesus offers, and the forgiveness and the freedom and the inclusion and the broadmindedness of their own thinking to be accepted by God through Jesus. The Conservatives want Jesus to pour out his Spirit over their tradition and their rigidness and their comfort zone.

In our flesh, we want new life without change! We want new hearts without removing the old! We need to open our hearts that we may want the new life that God offers, free from our bondage and open to love, open to being different.

The Book of Acts is about God by the power of His Holy Spirit bringing reform to the church, to the people, to the structure, to the hearts.

The challenge for us is: Are we still a Church of the Acts of the Holy Spirit, submitting to God and accepting His plans, or are we a Church that commemorates what God did in the past and what was achieved by us in His Name?

Today let us look not to the past, but to the present and submit ourselves to God, and accept the freedom that we have been given to serve Him. Freedom from the things that bind us to the ways of the world, and freedom to love for His Kingdom.

Let us Pray:

Holy God you have set the captives free, and death no longer has dominion over us. The only true freedom is the freedom that you offer. Pour out your Holy Spirit upon us that we may walk in that freedom and serve you truly all the days of our lives.



I believe in order to understand

Gospel Meditation 21st April 2021

“Jesus answered, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to Me will never hunger, and whoever believes in Me will never thirst.  But as I stated, you have seen Me and still you do not believe. Everyone the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will never drive away.  For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but to do the will of Him who sent Me. And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that I shall lose none of those He has given Me, but raise them up at the last day.  For it is My Father’s will that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in Him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” ( John 6:36-40)

“For I do not seek to understand, but I believe in order to understand. For I believe this: unless I believe, I will not understand.” ( Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury & Teacher of the Faith,1109)

The Basic principle of the Christian faith is that we believe that God is the Creator of all things and that Jesus Christ is the saviour of the World that God created. He is the originator, and perfector of our faith. As Anselm said – this is the approach that we must take. Interestingly this is the “Scientific Method” We base our lives on this Hypothesis and observe the results and the truth will reveal itself. We are surrounded by evidence of God’s hand in our lives, we are surrounded by evidence that God cares for us, that he has a plan for us. When we read Scripture we can use the text as a Hypothesis and test it in our own lives, that way the text is not just a story out of history but provides a context and a reality for us. The reality is and it is expressed throughout Scripture and history, that the last enemy’ ‘death’ has been overcome. This is proven in two ways. Firstly Jesus rose from the dead and there is overwhelming evidence of this. Secondly the belief in the Resurrection makes everything in life make sense. If we live, and then we die, life is futile. But if our lives have eternal consequence, then life has purpose and meaning and this is what Jesus offers. A life of meaning and purpose. Now reorder your thoughts around this hypothesis – life has meaning and purpose and Jesus the great teacher, reveals those things to me through His life and teaching.

If you believe that life is without design and without purpose, you will live a life that is futile. If you believe that Jesus is the Christ and that you are God’s child and that you are loved and that your life has value, then you will live a life of meaning and purpose, regardless of your circumstances. If you believe that Jesus came into the world and lived in human form and endured the things that you endure, and was tempted and suffered, then all your life experiences are in him and with him and through him you will live a life to His praise and glory.

Today set you heart on believing the Word of God and the testimony of God through Jesus the Christ. The three pillars of Anglicanism are Holy Scripture, Tradition (the teaching of the church throughout the ages) and Reason.

It’s not blind faith – its reasonable, logical, deduced faith. When we believe to understand, then life makes sense. When we believe, then we look for evidence to support our belief, and it is all around us – I pray that you will see that today, and every day.

let us pray!

Lord open our spiritual eyes that we may see you in every aspect of our lives. Guide our thoughts and inspire our “hearts mind” that we may feed on the bread of life and receive the life that you offer us. Amen.