Monday, February 28, 2011


"If you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday." -Isaiah 58:10

This scripture is running though my head recently.  It is a verse that I love but I have particularly been feeling SPENT these last few days.  And it's a specific 'spent-ness.'  It's a spentness because of our life of loving Ntokozo, someone who is certainly broken and oppressed.  I just hit a wall and have gotten really overwhelmed by it all, and the millions of steps that are still ahead of us for her healing.  This is a young girl, teen mom, orphan, victim of sexual, physical, and emotional abuse, and now living with crazy white people.  Yeah, if she didn't already have an identity crisis...  I kid, but seriously, I think 'we' think that you put a broken person in a loving family, just take in a cute foster kid, and 'magic' they are fixed.  Oh white people, how naive and full of ego we really are.  Seriously though, we have found ourselves in such a mess, and there is NOTHING we can do except wait for God to do a miracle and heal her.  It just all hit me yesterday, and thankfully we were at Hillsong and so I had so much time and space to cry it out before God.  And in even more divine favor, the sermon by Phil Dooley was about 'Vision' and keeping hold of our vision even when negativity tries to take us off track.  Over the weekend I went into a bit of a pity party about how hard this is, and God really got me back on track.  This is HIS story, this is HIS vision, and He is going to work things out how HE wants to.  We know this, maybe sometimes you need a good reminder of it.  Nonetheless, we are definitely praying for some major breakthroughs with Ntokozo, that she would trust us and allow us to love  on her.  It WILL happen.  We will see Him work.  Where are the places in YOUR life where vision is getting you off track?  If it's GOD's vision and dream, it WILL happen.  



Today Casey is working on teaching Kieren to say her full name.  But she keeps getting stuck on her middle name, 'Joy.'  She is saying "Joy Joy Joy Kieren Prince"
I think she is probably correct, and that is her true name.
This girl is pure joy.

Friday, February 25, 2011

The View Women

Another incredible week with my Ocean View women.  Thursday night we met again for our weekly Bible Study looking at the Gospel of John.  I so look forward to this every week, and in a new way that I didn't during our gatherings last year.  Previously we just met and shared stories, prayed for one another, and let whatever we wanted to develop.  This year, we start with teaching from the Gospel of John and then reflect on the word of God and what Jesus wants to do in our lives today.  It is powerful EVERY TIME.  The word of God is so powerful and breathes life into us.  This week we talked about the episode in John 2 where Jesus turns over tables and 'cleanses' the Jewish Temple.  We talked about the 'holy anger' of Jesus and what God longs for in true worship.  Then we just worshiped together in song and prayer.  It was beautiful.  

Afterwards I got to catch up with one of my favorite women in the group, Pam, and hear about the hardships she has been going through in her personal life and with her family.  She is a very special person, and God is going to use in big ways in the future.  Just special time.  

LOVE THESE WOMEN.  They are inspirational and so special.  Love.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

My Kids

We had Ntokozo's son, Jacob over last night to play.  Whenever we are going to have him at our home, it's something I think about all day, getting oddly excited about seeing this sweet boy.  It's so crazy!  I like other people's kids, but I really don't get super pumped about them invading my house.  They are fine, even fun when at other people's houses.  
But not Jacob.  I LOVE him.  Weird.

These are my sweet kids at the beach on Saturday.  They have so much fun together.  
 We figured out yesterday that if Kieren and Ntokozo are sisters, then Jacob is Kieren's nephew.  He needs to call her 'Aunt Kieren.'  Love it.
 At the beach Kieren runs, sings, jumps, splashes, screams, and plays.  JOY.
 Jacob is SO SWEET.  Always content and quiet, except when 'chasing' Kieren and he begins to giggle.  
I love my family.


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

They are Rising

Friends, Followers, and Supporters,
We have some exciting news to announce!  Ubuntu Sports Outreach is launching a special fundraising campaign.  Over the next 60 days, from now until Easter, we are seeking to raise $18,000 to cover the costs of all 24 soccer teams/coaches we hope to have this year.  We are doing this through a new crowd funding format called Causevox.  You can find the cause, and donate, right here:  
Our hope is that by making this really easy for people we can get LOTS of people involved.  So, not only are we asking you to give a little, but please spread this throughout your friends!  Make it your facebook status once a week for the next 2 months.  Put it on twitter.  Email your friends.  Put it in your church bulletin.  Write it in the sky!  You can find all the details on the site, so I won't share all of them with you here.
There is significance to doing this at Easter.  On that day we celebrate Jesus rising from death to new life which he offers to us.  Our coaching mentors are offering the boys in these schools the opportunity for new life as well.  Come, let's do it together.
Over 60 days we need to raise only $300 each day.
We only need 1,000 people to give at least $18.
If 1,800 people give $10, we will bring new life!
Imagine if 8 people, church groups, or families sponsored whole teams, 
that would only leave $12 for 1000 people give.

Thanks for the support you give us for EVERYTHING that we are doing!  

Casey & the Ubuntu Sports Outreach Staff

Knock Knock

Recently I posted this 'tweet' 

We just had a holy crazy Ocean View household with like 5938uodje3038u million peeps in and out. WHOA.

It was one of those crazy View days where like a million people were in and out of our house.  Someone at our Hillsong leaders Connect Group last night asked how I deal with that, all the people coming in and out of our home and life every day.  I laughed, remembering in the moment how I was TRYING to be okay with it all, but it was really overwhelming and I had to control myself so I wouldn't just scream at everyone.   I didn't, but it was a close one.

Today on the way to the gym, Casey and I were reflecting on something that happened later that night, as a woman came to the door asking for food and we eventually turned her away.  This is a DAILY occurance, and something we have tried to make decisions on so we can have a united front.  There are two sides for me.  One is the privacy, and if we continually give food from our house, people will be knocking on our door all the time.  Emotionally I just can't handle it all.  But the other side is just having enough - how can we literally always be giving food out - it's not like we have an endless supply either.  And this was what Casey was telling this woman, that we can't just give food to everyone or we will not have enough.  This morning he was reflecting that even as he said it he cringed, knowing undeneath that common remark shows a lack of faith that God can provide all we AND others need.  Do we really trust God?  What should our response be to those in immediate need around us?  What WOULD Jesus do?

We realize that we do need a new plan, a small way to help alleviate hunger immediately for people, but also connecting them to our church that DOES want to reach out to our community helping them to find ways out of hard places, and also helping people to connect with job creation ministries that we partner with (like 'Living Way' that has been created out of Living Hope).  

Ultimately we both know that each knock on that door is Jesus and opens up the truth of pride, sin, and fear in our hearts.  Sometimes living in a township is like a mirror, and what we see in the reflection is pretty rough.  All of us have 'knocks' on the doors of our lives, in our jobs, school, neigborhood, even by family members.  Do we answer the door or turn people away?  Maybe you should join us by looking in the mirror; don't be scared of how disheveled you really are, Jesus is going to help clean you up.

Lots of love,

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Book Review by Sarah

Casey and I both just finished SUCH. A. GOOD. BOOK.  Warning, this is a crude and crazy reading!  David Sedaris is from Raleigh and we know his dad through our gym spin class (random!) so we have read his stuff for a while!  His work is short stories from his life and they are RIDICULOUS and hilarious.  It is laugh out LOUD reading for me, and always brings a touch of Southern love and warmth.  If you are looking for a great work of literature, something a bit nuts, and a work of modern Americana, check out David Sedaris.

Overall Grade: A

Friends and fam.  I love teaching.  I was doubting it a bit last week, or doubting if students would ever like me (and thus sign up for my future classes), but we are back in business this week.  Just finished my fourth lecture.  I love teaching.  I love my students.  I love their crazy brains and watching them learn and grow and challenge themselves.  I love their thoughts.  They are SMART; smarter than they know.  Good times.  So blessed for this opportunity.  This week I will grade their first BIG paper that they turned into today and SO EXCITED to see what they have written.  Its going to be fun.

Notes below.

Lots of love,

Or open it yourself at here.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Fun Times

Suffering for Jesus isn't all suffering.  Sometimes you have to have fun.  I mean you just HAVE to.

On Friday night we were privileged to go with some friends and 70,000 of our closest (WHITE) South Africans to Cape Town Stadium to see the EPIC U2 perform.  It had been 14 years since South Africa had seen the band perform, but only a year and a 1/2 for us.  Ironically, we went to the U2 concert in Raleigh the night before we MOVED to South Africa in 2009.  Crazy.  It was the same tour on Friday, some different songs, but many similarities. The difference was Bono and the band, who were noticeably moved and touched by being in South Africa and interacting with us!  They got 'chocked up' more than once.  Cool.  It was a special night, but reminded us vividly and fondly of our great friends who shared the same show with us in 2009.  Good times.

Casey and Sarah at dinner before the concert

A group of friends went together, but these are all the beautiful girls!

Our row at the top (TOP!) of the stadium

Bono singing his HEART out for us!  Amazing!!

The band takes the stage.  EPIC.


I preached this morning at Ocean View Methodist Church.  As we were singing in worship, and people were going down to the front altar to receive prayer, I was thinking, "I love this place!"  I feel so blessed to be a part of this community and watch God move here.  It really takes time, some more time, and then a lot of time, to really see change in people.  You need patience, you need to wait, you need to not be in control.  I am HORRIBLE at all these things but somehow through God's strength (and with lots of fun and dancing in our house) we have been here for long enough to see things move.  I love this church.  For better or worse, we are here, but today I loved it and am thankful.

Preaching went really well and I am just so enjoying preaching and teaching lately.  This week I taught THREE times with teaching, bible study, and preaching.  Love it.  LOOOVED my nap this  afternoon too :)

Here are my notes from the sermon today titled, "Stuckness."

Lots of love,

Thursday, February 17, 2011


If you wonder if miracles still happen today, or if you think they don't, then you need to come to Ocean View.  God is alive and well here, for sure!  Last night for our View Women's Bible Study I preached from John 2 where Jesus does his first miracle in turning water to wine.  The intricacies and depth of this story are stunning, and it really brought to life a BIG GOD who wants to bless us in the ordinary and small places of our lives.  Then we shared stories of miracles happening in our own lives, and among us God came alive in new a beautiful ways.  One girl is even LIVING a miracle, as daily God is healing her.  She is a young adult woman, who had a pregnancy where the baby was found deformed inside her in a scan, and then died.  She delivered a dead baby, and thought she would die of sadness from this, but did not.  God is re-building her life day by day, and she shows signs of God's love and tender care.  It is beauty from the ashes in the making.  Amazing.  

Love these women and sharing life with them.  Love how the Bible comes alive in unthinkable ways as we share our lives.  Love what God STILL is going to do among us!

Sarah's notes from her teaching: click here.

Check This Out!

We have a growing relationship with Nicole, an American missionary who is an extraordinary lady, who we might have never met if not for Ntokozo.  Because she is the foster mom to Jacob, Ntokozo's son.  She is seriously incredible, and the more we get to know her, to more odd it is because we all seem to 'fit' so easily.  It's like God planned this whole thing or something!?!

She has a blog and is really working on sharing her beautiful story (in between reading, naps, and the chaos of being a new mom!).  Check it out and keep watching this story as many more great things are sure to happen!

Sweet Baby Jacob


This week we had to say goodbye to a family that we have grown very close to during our time in South Africa.  Casey and I met Antoine and Mathy Musemena in 2008 when we were serving with Living Hope.  Antoine was working for Living Hope as a support group leader, and I journeyed with Mathy as she worked through the trauma and grief of her flee from the Congo to South Africa.  They became close friends and were an incredible example of life in Christ and faith lived out to us.  We reunited in 2009 and have shared many special life moments since.  We have seen the tragedy of them losing their baby daughter, Lauren, they prayed with us as Kieren fought through her burns, and we have celebrated the many great things God has done.  Ever since I have known them they have always been clear that their call was to return to the Congo, a place where they were almost killed, threatened, and persecuted beyond anything I can imagine.  The Congolese were THEIR people and God wanted them there.  Finally, the time has come, and this week they are returning back to their homeland to start a non-profit called 'The Good Shephard' that will serve and love the people they care for so deeply.  Their faith is exemplary and their lives are completely surrendered the the will of God.  It is humbling and a beautiful thing to watch.  My heart broke a bit on Sunday to give hugs and love as we said goodbye, but I believe we will meet again, and even minister side-by-side.  Antoine and Casey discussed how beautiful it would be if we could minister with them in the Congo, and how profound it would be to have white people in a place where they had never seen anyone like us.  So now I have a new dream, to see them living this beautiful life in their home and they unthinkable ways God is using their faith and devotion.  It is going to be incredible, but it still all began with many tearful goodbyes this week.  Please pray for this beautiful family, Antoine and Mathy Musemena and their kids Onesie and Christ.

Lots of love,

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Family Time

We have a new little family forming in the Prince world.  Pretty much every day Kieren's little buddy, Keegan, comes over the play with her in the afternoon.  Keegan is four years old, and the little brother of Kyle, the young boy we have spent a lot of time with over the past year and a half.  Then lately we have also been spending some more time with Ntokozo's son, Jacob, and his foster-mom is letting us watch him on Saturdays and Ntokozo even babysit some.  She LOVES the special time, and Jacob is just a happy bundle of joy.  So on Saturday the whole clan was together and we went to the beach for some splash and play time, and of course, ICE CREAM.  It was just a little slice of heaven for me.  I love these crazy people, seriously. 

Lots of love,

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

We have a need!

We have a need for volunteers, a serious need!  As Ubuntu Sports Outreach grows we need more help!  We have a few specific needs and we invite you to pray about filling that need.  Or maybe you can think of somebody that would be perfect for this.
The first need we have is for someone that likes to work behind the scenes, can help with some organizational & administrative stuff, and likes to write and communicate with people.  Do you have experience writing reports or stories?  Are you good at the details?  This area is growing the more we do, especially as we try to raise significant funds to support Ubuntu Football Academy.  Can you come help us for 3, 6, or 12 months?  (This is a need NOW.)
We also need volunteers to help with our schools programs.  Each school program is run by a local volunteer, but those programs would be enhanced with the assistance and encouragement of a foreign volunteer.  You'll provide needed energy and credibility to the team.  Are you good with kids?  Do you like spending time building relationships & serving?  Come join us for a year.  What about a gap year, taking a year off from school, or right after graduation?  (This is a need now, and ongoing, on a year to year basis.)
Finally, we'll be looking for guys with significant coaching backgrounds to come and increase our coaching staff with the Academy.  This is for guys with some significant playing and/or coaching experience.  Have you ever wanted to serve Jesus through soccer?  Do you want to nurture the next great leaders in Africa?  (This is a need in 2012 and beyond.)
Well, there it is, we have a need, and we're trusting God that you're going to fill it.  Let us know if you're interested or have questions.


Reality BITES

This week reality hit as a teacher - didn't take me long, did it?  Nothing bad happened, of course, but this is all becoming real now and I am living the TRUE life of a teacher.  When I started, the head of Christian Studies (my boss), Rob felt like he needed to warn me about how hard it could be when students are lazy or let you down.  I thought he was being a downer and dramatic, but then I feel in love (quickly) with my group of students and decided they are epic and wonderful and have endless potential.  But they don't necessarily see it, or know it, or care, and some are just completely missing it.  I guess they are missing out on what I see.  The potential, their brilliant minds, what could be.  They could be so much.

I feel like I've played this song before.... and I'm guessing it won't be the last time I sing it.  But I will keep hoping and keep creating space for beautiful things to happen.  What else can I do?  I love these people now!

Handout of prayer and Scripture reading for class

Notes on from my lecture on the Gospel of John

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
-1 John 4:10

Friday, February 11, 2011

A Week in the View

Thought we would share some of the images from this week in Ocean View

Neighbor Akeelah making some beautiful art on the pavement in front of Ocean View Methodist

Ntokozo hanging with Joslyn and Nosie, two of the View youth girls

Roxie and some of the View kids watching High School Musical through the window.  This thing is a phenomenon all over the world.  Sheesh.

Vano, Kyle, and Keegan hanging outside enjoying some fresh grapes.  They liked them so much they promised not to be rude anymore.  Only lasted a few minutes, but a great start...

Kieren enjoying another beautiful afternoon playing outside with 'Dora'

Sarah and Kieren laughing and playing outside

Kieren playing with her buddy Keegan.  They are new best buds!

Women Preparing

Ocean View is a busy community.  People are always coming and going, talking and gossiping, cooking and cleaning, walking and running.  They are always preparing for things, always working towards something.  The problem is, around here the things they are working on are small dreams, only shadows of what they could truly be doing with their lives.  They pray to God, but their prayers are for small things, or things that God doesn't even want for them.  Actually, sounds familiar to the rest of us.  Last night I shared a talk with the women about John 1 and John the Baptist who was preparing the way for Jesus Christ.  John's message still speaks deeply into our lives as we often are preparing for the wrong things and possibly miss Jesus Christ all together.  Check out my notes below to read my talk!

Notes for talk here:

Lots of love,

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Incredible Story

Suicide is something that is personal to us, as we have walked with various people who have struggled with or attempted suicide, and even in my own teenage years I had suicidal thoughts during my dark moments.  It is not something created by someone simply looking for attention, but a true fight for many who deal with depression.  This afternoon I saw an incredible story on CNN about how a group in Japan is working with people to overcome these demons for good, and often with very positive results.

See this incredible story here: #cnn


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Powers That Be

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately about the 'powers' that live in this community and steal away the lives and joy of the people in Ocean View.  Some of it is prompted by a the news of a friend who has gone back to a life of drugs and almost abandoned his family.  Also, I recently saw an amazing movie (rated NC-17 - yikes, not for the faint of heart) called 'Requiem for a Dream'.  It came out in 2000, and just came on the tv one night and drew me in.  This is a description of it:
Drugs. They consume mind, body and soul. Once you're hooked, you're hooked. Four lives. Four addicts. Four failures. Despite their aspirations of greatness, they succumb to their addictions. Watching the addicts spiral out of control, we bear witness to the dirtiest, ugliest portions of the underworld addicts reside in. It is shocking and eye-opening but demands to be seen by both addicts and non-addicts alike.
This quote is written about a Hollywood block-buster movie, but it could be written about the people in Ocean View.  Except it wouldn't say 'four' addicts but 'hundreds' of addicts just right here.  It is terrifying and tragic to watch drugs tear apart the lives of people you love.  Kyle and Keegan have been spending more and more time at our house, and while Kyle goes to school during the day, Keegan is made to follow his drug-addict mother around Ocean View as she delivers alcohol to feed her habit.  Keegan walks by our home and shouts 'Hi Sarah!' to us, and my heart hurts for him.  It's not fair.  It's a demon, these drugs, and it grabs a hold of people and robs them of life.  But it doesn't just affect them, it affects everyone they love.  Today I was asked by Granny's sister, Neta, who goes to the Baptist church, to visit a family where the dad has been addicted for years and it's tearing apart everyone.  It's ripping apart this community.  It's darkness in one of it's rawest and most evil forms.  All I can do is continue to believe that Jesus IS the LIGHT of the world and can even pierce through and overcome the darkness of drugs.  Come Jesus come.

Lots of love,

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Message From a New Friend

Our weekly Women's Bible Study is really moving and growing.  Something happens when we come together and learn from God's Word; we are all being changed.  A new friend has been hanging out with one of our leaders, missionary Leigh Myers.  She shared this:

"Hey friend.  I enjoyed tonight's meeting.  Made me feel hopeful; like there is light after my dark days.  Hope I'll see you soon."

That's what it's all about.  Praise God!

We meet again tonight, and every Thursday night at 7:00pm (this is six hours eastern-standard time, so 1:00pm on the East Coast).  Please be in prayer for us!


Kieren's First Report Card

Want a snapshot into the world of an African preschool?  Well Kieren's is pretty great, and today they sent home her 'report card.'  I know not all moms are this lame and put up their kids report cards on their blogs (next is a bumper sticker that says my daughter is better than you and your kids...) but I can't help myself.  Her school is so great, and obviously, so is Kieren!

Ubuntu Football Academy First Practice

Check out the pics of Monday's first Ubuntu Football Academy practice here.

Teaching is my JAM!

Seriously folks, I am in love LOVE with teaching.  Wow.  Had my second day of class and lecture and we just had an incredible discussion together about so many different topics.  They are diverse, passionate, SO intelligent, and just awesome people.  I am so sunk.  New favorite.  Teaching.

Handout of prayers and verses for opening of class

Notes of lecture and discussion for class two

This is me teaching at the side ruler museum.  I have so many talents.

Picture from

Monday, February 7, 2011

Ubuntu Sports Elite Academy Launch!

Check out Casey's update on the Ubuntu blog:

Some Shots of our Youth

Marizon, Ntokozo, and Stacy, buds in the OV

Andy Myers, our missionary friend and LEGIT youth leader, playing the classic youth game, "Baby if you love me, won't you just smile?"  Always a winner!

Working with youth keeps you young - but it's nice to have a toddler bedtime at 9pm to get them all out of the door when we all get sleepy  :)  It's going to be a FUN year!

Weekend Brain Dump

CRAZY weekend!  We hosted a braai for the youth of Ocean View Methodist on Friday night and surprised ourselves when ALL FOUR of the Prince family members had a BLAST!  Kieren loved the friends and sat on my lap the whole time we played games, Ntokozo is the new 'it girl' and loved getting to know new friends, and Casey and I laughed our faces off at these great people!  We are going to have a good time with these young peeps this year!  This coming Friday night for youth we will meet earlier and then head to a dance competition at the local high school as one of our youth guys, Aaron will be dancing!  So fun!  Saturday was another busy day, running, preparing, and the  LAUNCH of Ubuntu Sports Elite Academy with a small tournament and braai for the families!  Casey will share more, but what a gift and celebration!  Love the kids, love the families, love God that we get to be a part of this!  Sunday was me preaching in the OV, then heading to Hillsong for church and lunch afterwards.  Some awesome naps for the family on Sunday afternoon and a quiet dinner together.  So nice, so fun, so filling, so crazy, so blessed!

Lots of love,

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Ended this crazy weekend with preaching at Ocean View Methodist Church!  The fun never stops around here! It was a wonderful morning - our head pastor Kyle Woodrow is in the USA, so myself and Andy Myers, the American missionary who is leading the worship team took over.  We did the WHOLE service in ONE HOUR - new record!  Hollar at the white people!  We are starting a new series called 'Celebrate Recovery' which is taken from a series from Saddleback Church in the States.  I preached from one of my favorite passages in the Bible - Romans 7 and 8 where Paul speaks about His sin nature and the freedom we find in Christ Jesus.  Check out my notes below - it was a good one!

Lots of love,

Sarah's Sermon 'Celebrate Recovery - R is for Realize'

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Women are Rising

Last night was another WOW night.  I had my weekly bible study with the women of Ocean View.  It was a strange weather day, but by the evening it was HOT, HOT, HOTTT!!  Not a breeze in sight and it was raining a bit.  Inside the Ocean View Methodist Church it was bordering on HADES hot, but slowly some women arrived.  It still feels a bit strange, this new format of the women's group, where I teach first, and then we break into two groups to talk and pray.  I prayed and began my teaching, and quickly God took over, sharing His words of promise and power with my friends.  Afterwards we broke into our two groups.  Granny Jacoba leads one group and our missionary friend Leigh Myers leads the other.  I sat in with Leigh, and the conversation was open, vulnerable, and beautiful.  These women face hardships that I could never imagine, and they are courageous and hopeful.  When they falter in their beliefs that God can still do a miracle, someone else comes in to bridge the gap of faith for them.  These women are growing; in fact they are rising up.  God is changing them and they are not the same women I met a year and a half ago.  This is going to be a big year for them and they are going to experience huge things.  It will all be to the of the Glory of God, because as John 1:14 says, "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us" or made his home among us.  In Ocean View, God is not just 'among' but IN these women and growing by the day....

Lots of love,

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Can't believe this is happening

Read my post on the Ubuntu blog for the details but on Saturday we will launch the Ubuntu Football Academy!!  After 10 different days of clinics, lots of conversations about different players, tons of phone calls, and 15 in-home visits this dream is becoming reality.  It's almost hard to believe.  Almost 3 years ago Jenks and I started discussing this dream that God was giving us.  16 months ago we moved here and started putting down roots.  And now the dream is starting to fully take shape!!  Holy Crap!!  I'm starting a football development program in South Africa that is going to produce and nurture the next great leaders in Africa!!  Sorry to get so loud, but it's just amazing!  God has blessed us beyond measure during this process.  He chose some great kids to work with.  He also blessed us with around 4 solid families that we can lean on to really help this thing get off the ground.  God is already helping us build relationships with people that could be key to making this whole thing happen.  I'm almost at a loss for words.  This is why he moved me to Africa, and it's actually happening.
Please pray for Saturday and the first few weeks of getting started.  We're going to need it!
Please check out our new Executive Summary about the Academy.  (Mad props to Dave Edwards for making it look AMAZING!!)  Print it and share it with others.  We need people to partner with us to make all the dreams a reality!


Book Review- Jesus Wants to Save Christians

Just finished up Rob Bell's new-ish book (with Don Golden) "Jesus Wants to Save Christians: A Manifesto for the Church in Exile."  The book wasn't quite what I expected.  As typical for Bell it included a lot of great teaching on Old Testament scriptures and really brought them to life.  It traced the path from Eden to Egypt to Sinai to Babylon to our new type of exile.  He's sneaky in that I think there was some critique of the modern church that  you have to draw out of the writing.  It's a lot less explicit than I would have expected.  I think that's the part that was surprising, it was a lot less pointed than I expected.
So, it's a decent book, just not quite sure what I drew from it quite yet.  Maybe those of you that are much smarter than me will get more of the depths.
Overall Grade: B-



What do you dream?  This is what Casey asked a group of us on Tuesday night, as we gathered in our living room for our Hillsong connect group.  We are mostly friends, some new aquaintances, but all people living, working, serving, and trying to daily love God.  Casey shared that recently God has been challenging him that he doesn't dream big enough, doesn't trust God enough, and even creates his own hindrances in accomplishing the dreams God created him to fulfill.  Casey read to us this scripture from Isaiah:
1 “Sing, barren woman,
   you who never bore a child;
burst into song, shout for joy,
   you who were never in labor;
because more are the children of the desolate woman
   than of her who has a husband,”
            says the LORD.
2 “Enlarge the place of your tent,
   stretch your tent curtains wide,
   do not hold back;
lengthen your cords,
   strengthen your stakes.
3 For you will spread out to the right and to the left;
   your descendants will dispossess nations
   and settle in their desolate cities.   
4 “Do not be afraid; you will not be put to shame.
   Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated.
You will forget the shame of your youth
   and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood.
- Isaiah 54:1-4
We then shared our dreams together and what holds us back.  It was a simple idea and it turned into a beautiful and holy night.  People shared deeply from their hearts their hopes, and fears, and all that they dream.  Some of us are in the middle of seeing dreams fulfilled, some of us have dreams years away from beginning, some of us don't know our dreams, and even others are watching dreams fall apart.  In all of it, we are held together by a Holy and Good God who asks us to open ourselves up more, hoping and waiting for more, trusting that no dream is too big or impossible for our God.  It was a deep privilege to hear from the hearts of our friends, and a night that will not be forgotten.  I am thankful to dream, thankful that Casey and I dream together, and oh so thankful for a lively community where we can dream together.  Most of all, I am thankful for the Creator and Fulfillment of all my dreams, Jesus Christ.

Lots of love,

 "You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream."  -CS Lewis
People see God everyday,
they just don't recognize him.

~ Pearl Bailey

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Other Side of the Desk

Yesterday was a BIG day of firsts.  I gave my first lecture as a professor at a local Christian college, Cornerstone Institute.  Wow.  This is something I have honestly been dreaming and feeling called to since I was in my own university days, and it was certainly strange to be on the other side of the desk.  I was brought to my lecture room in the morning, and sat down to meet and teach the young people who would be formed in the coming weeks by my class.  It was pretty overwhelming before I arrived in the morning, as I just couldn't imagine how it would all look, and then suddenly it was happening.  I got to know my six students for my small, third year class on Johannine Writings (the Biblical books attributed to John, Gospel of John 1-3 John, and Revelation), and all the reasons we would be sharing the time together.  They are diverse, passionate, both young and old, and have a pure desire to know God's word for their various callings ahead.  They want to be teachers, lecturers, youth ministers, pastors, and just people who can inform and inspire others.  Now I have moved from fear to a great respect for these great people and a huge feeling of responsibility to form them for what is ahead.  What a privilege it will be, and I am so thankful to God that HE called me to this position and He will walk along with me every step of the way.  I certainly don't feel that alone I have enough to share and teach all they need, but I trust in the weeks to come God will fill in all the gaps!  I can't wait to hear their insights and challenges and for all of us to be different, deeper, and stronger on the other side of these 7 weeks.

WOO HOO!  I am a teacher!!

Click here for my notes from my lecture to my first Johannine Writings!

Lots of love,

picture from

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Opening Prayer and Scripture for Class

Litany of Rejoicing”
Cape Town, South Africa
An African Prayer Book
Ed. Desmond Tutu

Leader: For rebirth and resilience,
People: Blessed by God;
Leader: For the spiritually humble,
People: Glory to God, hallelujah;
Leader: For all who are hungry and thirsty for justice,
People: Praise Him and magnify Him forever;
Leader: For all who are banned for speaking the truth.
People: Blessed be God;
Leader: For all who triumph over their bitter circumstance
People: Glory to God, hallelujah!
Leader: For all who risk reputation, livelihood and life itself for Christ's sake and the gospel;
People: All praise and all glory; this is God's kingdom; praise Him and love Him forever. AMEN.

Psalm 68:1-6
    May God arise, may his enemies be scattered;    may his foes flee before him. May you blow them away like smoke—    as wax melts before the fire,    may the wicked perish before God. 3 But may the righteous be glad    and rejoice before God;    may they be happy and joyful.
 4 Sing to God, sing in praise of his name,
   extol him who rides on the clouds
   rejoice before him—his name is the LORD.
5 A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows,
   is God in his holy dwelling.
6 God sets the lonely in families,
    he leads out the prisoners with singing;
    but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.