Women of Reverence welcomes guest blogger Lindi Lerefolo.
Lindi is first and foremost the daughter of the most high God, and no accolades can ever trump that. She is married to Simon Lerefolo and together they have three children: boy(16); girl (13); girl (10).
Lindi and Simon lead Every Nation Rosebank and together with Simon they serve on the Every Nation Southern Africa Apostolic Team.
Lindi studied Human Resource and was in the market place for 12 years before she became full time in church ministry.
She is passionate about preaching the Gospel and discipleship, as well as equipping people into growing healthy marriages and families. Lindi is currently completing a certificate in Christian Counselling with SATS( South African Theological Seminary)
Things that breaks Lindi’s heart: 1. Injustice of any form, especially to the vulnerable. 2. Ignorance 3. Wastage, any form (food, water)
Things Lindi enjoys:
Spending time at home with her family,Hosting people in her home, Finding new cozy and pretty restaurants, Cooking and trying new things, Traveling, Dancing, Reading.
Ahhh change!! That exclamation coming from someone who dreads change or any form of transition, may I say. I have yet to meet a person who gets excited at the mention of transition, especially transition that requires hard work on your side. In actual fact, is there a transition that doesn’t require hard work or for you to apply yourself? No, all transitions of all form, shape and size will require some effort and some engagement.
The Bible is full of transitions and people who had to shift from one place to another, from one position to another, from one circumstance to another etc. In order to see God ‘s promises come to fruition a shift needs to happen. The story that always captures my heart from the Bible, is the story of Mary (Mother of Jesus).
Luke 1:26-38 English Standard Version (ESV)
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed[a] to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favoured one, the Lord is with you!”[b] 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favour with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”[c]
35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born[d] will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant[e] of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
An “unfair” transition
This is the most “unfair” transition one can ever think of or wish. Mary at that time must have been in her prime, sweet spot may I add. She was engaged and about to be married to the love of her life. She had probably been dreaming about her big day for days, her family and community were anticipating the big day with excitement, as you would expect. She never anticipated that her life, their lives together with Joseph would be interrupted in that manner. She did not ask for this!
Friends, the reality of life is that all of us have faced some form of change or transition, they are inevitable, it’s part of life. Some transitions will be natural like, your kids growing through different stages of life, getting married etc. Some transitions like Mary, may be “unfair”, might be things you didn’t ask for, things you didn’t anticipate to happen at all or at that particular time in life. I am talking about things like, divorce, death of loved ones, a birth of a child with special needs, retrenchments, sexual abuse, rape, whatever circumstantial transition you might find yourself in, that you didn’t ask for.
My question is, what is the deposition of your heart to the transitions whether natural or unfair?
The shock and shame
29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her,
Not only will transition leave you shocked and troubled, it will also bring shame sometimes. After Mary received this news of change that sounded significant, she had to figure out how to tell her fiancé, how does she explain this. When Joseph received the news, he did what all of us would do in the face of shame that is caused by an “unfair” transition…to divorce Mary quietly the Bible says. Shame causes us to hide and isolate ourselves, because we think to ourselves “what will people say”. Mary and Joseph were faced with that dilemma in the midst of this change, what is their community going to say?. Their reputation, especially Joseph’s was at risk, going ahead with the marriage of someone whom the community could deem “Immoral”? This is huge!
How do we respond?
38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant[e] of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.”
Our openness to the working of the Holy Spirit in the midst of a difficult transition that doesn’t make sense sometimes is critical. It is our access card to a promise that is ahead of us.
“Nothing paralyzes our lives like the attitude that things can never change. We need to remind ourselves that God can change things. Outlook determines outcome. If we see only the problems, we will be defeated; but if we see the possibilities in the problem, we can have victory” Warren Wiersbe
Outlook determines outcome. If we look at our transition no matter how challenging it might be with the mindset of favour and grace instead of victim or defeat, we will always come out on the other side victorious.
31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
I am grateful for Mary’s obedience, I am grateful that Mary didn’t respond with “sorry, you’ve got the wrong girl” type of response. I am grateful that because of Mary’s response of obedience in the face of fear, shame and persecution she was to face, she said yes to be a vessel that will carry our savior Jesus Christ.
There is a promise and there is a lesson in all of our transitions, only if our outlook to the transition is aligned to that of Jesus. May the suffering that you are going through in your transition not be in vain. May there be new wine in the pressing, as you surrender to change and transition. God loves you and He will not be distant in your transition. Trust Him and trust the process that He is taking you through.
Here are some questions you can ponder on.
1. Have you or are you mourning whatever that has been lost as a result of transition or change?
2. What is the disposition of your heart in your transition/change?
3. Who are you reaching out to in your transition? Are you in community? Mary had Elizabeth, healing and victory is found in community.
The song that has ministered to me a lot lately in my transition has been (New Wine) from Hillsong, There is More Album.