The Carter family is touching on eight months of this journey of faith in 2017 and realising more and more the enormity of the call we have responded to. We find ourselves walking this tension between, on the one hand, being blown away by God’s guidance, His love and strength, His grace, His unending promise to carry us, and then on the other hand the uncertainty of what it may take for us to stay the course of this ministry.
Faith, it seems to prove true, is not certainty but a willingness to walk on the water if we walk towards Jesus.
I reflect sometimes on what it must have taken for Paul to leave behind his life and throw himself wholeheartedly into the Kingdom. No doubt the clarity of his call and continued experience of Jesus must have carried him through times of need and despair. I am aware though that it was also the incredible partnerships with individuals and churches that also sustained him.
I am so thankful for his example in radically following Jesus despite the odds, and the example of those who supported him in this adventure. Surely these two go hand in hand.
God’s provision for our lives has been a thing of mystery and beauty. We would not imagine that we would have made it this far – we haven’t drawn a traditional ‘salary’ since December 2015. God has indeed carried us through the generous giving of wonderful partners, our accumulated savings and some tentmaking from time to time (it is understood that Paul, in part, sustained himself through his trade in tentmaking. We have also worked to earn extra finances as, and when, we have needed to – so my reference to ‘tentmaking’ is to be understood as our efforts to sustain ourselves.)
We are reaching the end of God’s provision for us through our savings, and are only one third of the way towards the amount of financial support we require. As scary a prospect as this is we are reminded often that we are not called to spend our time ‘tentmaking’ but to give ourselves in ministry to those who need it the most, often to people who might not be able to afford the services we might otherwise charge for.
No doubt there will still be many times we need to fill in the gaps in our support through our own initiatives – Inez spends time on her photography, and Steve uses his skill sets in education and psychology with individuals and groups. We are so conscious that this can potentially distract us from our focus on those who cannot afford such services – from the focus on serving Rustenburg; the Church and the city’s people.
If our call and ministry resonate with you, we have detailed a few practical ways to partner with our family:
- Pray through whether God is asking you to share financially with us from what He has provided for you/your family.
- Pray through connecting us with others whom you know would wish to partner with our family.
- Pray through hosting us for coffee in your home along with some of your friends so that we might share our hearts with them.
- Pray through approaching your church on our behalf to enter into partnership with us.
Why do I keep starting from the word ‘pray’? Because that is the genesis of everything, all acts of service have their beginning in the heart of God. It is from God that we receive our direction in how to use the gifts we have received – our finances, our intellect, our time, our money. All things flow from God, and from His generosity we live.
You will find our giving details at the end of this newsletter. Please be in touch if there is a way to give that touches your heart.
We are so grateful for the areas of answered prayer so far in 2017! Thank you to everyone who has been praying. Please don’t stop now! Keep praying for:
- Our family and our needs – we are starting to feel swamped by the enormity of the call we have responded to
- The current projects, and those still to come
- The Church in Rustenburg – there is so much to be accomplished to meet the diverse and pressing need in this city.
(If you would like to support us regularly in prayer, please contact us here to sign up for our monthly prayer request email.)
Grace Help Centre
The Grace Help Centre is well into it’s plans to consolidate both venues into one in Mooinooi. They were given notice to vacate the premises in Rustenburg at very short notice and have had to extend and renovate in Mooinooi to accommodate all of the children currently staying in Rustenburg. There have been some generous sponsors who have enabled this process to happen, but there are still needs to facilitate this consolidation smoothly. We give thanks to God for answered prayers for provision for the staff and residents of Grace Help.
Please continue to pray for the successful completion of this project as well as the unavoidable uncertainty and stress that will accompany the bringing together of two different communities of children and adults.
If you would like to contribute practically or financially to this project please contact us and we will connect you with Rina at Grace Help.
The first Camp Kaleidoscope event will take place on the 26th of August 2017. We are excited to see this project kick off in Rustenburg, please pray for the day and all of the participants. We are trusting it will be a day of great love, joy and relationship for all involved.
For an insight into the person, Brenda Klopper, behind the vision of this project have a look at this blog post where Inez interviewed her – http://www.the-way.co.za/index.php/2017/07/21/brenda-klopper-camp-kaleidoscope/
We use the word ‘partnership’ often. You may have wondered why. We don’t view the support we receive as a donation. Partnership indicates an equality in the participants that doesn’t explicitly exist in begging. We see those who support us through prayer, finances and relationship as being our equals in the Kingdom and that together we forge ministry opportunities for the advancement of the Gospel.
It means that giving signifies a horizontal bond between giver and receiver, and that bond is evidenced in the service that flows from it. So when you partner with us you are not helping us out because we are unable or unwilling to work – rather, you are co-creating moments of service, love, compassion, mercy for those in desperate need.
Cell: +2782 854 3229
Cell: +2779 340 9880
For direct donations please use the below details:
First National Bank
Account holder: S M Carter
Account number: 6258 8100 322
Branch code: 250 655
Reference: (depositor’ name and surname)
For tax exemption on your donation (via Section 18A of the SA Income Tax Act, 1962) please use the following bank account details:
First National Bank
Account holder: OC Africa NPC
Account number: 5144 0093 759
Branch code: 250 655
Reference: (Carter/donor name)
A SARS compliant certificate will be emailed to you.
May the Lord bless you and keep you
May the Lord make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you
May the Lord lift up His face to you and give you peace.