Agape Ministries ~ Grabouw South Africa

NEWS LETTER January 2016
As usual, we want to thank all of you for your contributions towards Agape. We value your prayers more than any physical contributions. Your obedience to the Lord by sowing and giving to the ministry is how the Organization survives. Therefore all that we have, we see as receiving it from Him, through you. Thank you so much to everyone who sows so diligently into Agape.
This year feels like a brand new book that we open. It’s like reading the summary on the back page of a book. You know more or less what is going on, but now you look forward with great expectancy to read the book. It is the same at Agape where God has shown us so much new things and has given our efforts proper direction. Last year we started with the changes He showed us. We have given over the church and Gerrit and his faithful ones continue with weekly children’s clubs. Gerrit also started a small group for people that does not go to church. They come together in the newly built coffee bar. The verse that inspired him to initiate this is Luke 15:1. Some of the people were part of Ami’s hopeless group, which of course is not hopeless any more. They are now children of the most High God and they are already
looking forward with great expectancy to what God is going to do in their hearts this year.
During last year Father showed us clearly that the new direction for Agape would emphasize the residential care for special needs children and vulnerable children. Our waiting lists at our facilities have become longer. In our special need facility we have 21 children but only receive Departmental Funding for 15. At our Child and Youth Care Centre we are registered for the care of 20 children, but receive Departmental Funding for 10 children. The irony of this is that each week we receive reqeusts From the Department Of Social Development for the placement of more children. Please pray with us.
We are very excited to see the Early Childhood Development boom in Grabouw and to see so many of the other non-profit organizations finally coming on board to provide this much-needed service to the community. This movement has enabled us to say yes to God’s call for our focus to move from Educare to Residential Care.  Ami still remembers how she had to take the little ones off the street and sometimes had to first wash them before she put them in a class. Many of these children are now already through college or university.
When they see us on the street they love to say hello. We know the circumstances from where they come from and we are extremely proud of them and know that Father’s Hand will always be on them.
Gerrit had the wonderful privilege of attending the graduation ceremony of three of our childcare workers at Hugenote College on the 8th of January 2016. Marco, our first adopted son from this community, was one of the three students and Gerrit suddenly realized that this was a milestone, because Hugenote College was where he and I studied 42 years ago. Their Alma Mater is now also ours. God has made it come full circle and Marco and his wife, Rene, are proud to
walk in their parent’s footsteps. Marco is now the head childcare worker at our children’s home. He was only two years old when we took him out of the bad circumstances and God rescued him from a family of criminals. His mom was murdered and his Dad was in jail. He lived with an alcoholic granny who threw him out of the little room they stayed in most of the time – even in rain or snow. God has changed this bloodline and placed him amongst children who came out of similar circumstances.
During these past holidays, a lot of the projects were moved around. The children from the children’s home moved to Agape 4 and the school for special needs moved to Agape 2. The Day Care Centre for special needs moved into the grade R school at Agape 2. The whole of Agape 2 will be renovated and upgraded to a disability-friendly centre for special needs children. Asiphe Home (Residential Care Facility for special needs children) will be on the same premises and that will make it so much easier for therapy and related activities. The big daycare centre of 170 children moved to Agape 1. Agape 3 got a new school building and the plumbing and electricity needed to be put in. This was an exodus of another kind. Buildings, classes, ramps for wheelchairs and bathrooms had to be renovated and changed. We were so busy that we did not even send out news over Christmas time.
For our children’s home children, it was the most amazing experience to be with us on the same premises. It feels like one big family. Our children now visit them regularly and they really enjoy the swimming pool and the horses and also the vegetable garden. They are not only closer to us for their benefit but also for us to come to know all the chances they take with the child carers.
This is harvest time
This is teaching them that a tomato plant needs a stake, just as they need to be each other’s stakes in bad times. “Lean on Me,” says Jesus.
Can you believe that with all the movement we still had time to do a camp with all the children of Agape 4. Sleeping in a tent under the stars was for some of them a first and very uplifting.
Riding on our horses and teaching them how to clean the stables and feed and care for the horses was such a new experience. Marco and Melani are the horse guys who helped the children.
With all the resources at Agape 4 can you imagine what God can do in the lives of these children? Practical skills are the in-word for us. God was again so good to us that He sent somebody to buy some containers for us.
These containers now become the official workshops for Agape, where our children will learn skills of woodwork, painting and various easy crafts. Making their paper, cane work and wooden toys.
The result of all these movements is that the whole of the old Elfco hostel is now empty and the builders can start with the new renovations at the new Disability friendly centre and will also include Asiphe Home. We will be able to take in more children and the facility will be 100% compliant with all health and safety standards. This is a big operation and we have a bit of money to start but the joy of all this is the amasing adventure to see how God builds His project. He planned it again so wonderfully by introducing to us a man with a disabled child, but also an architect and an Engineer. The builders are also God-given, Jandre and Elaine came on our way through a visit and now they helped us to start the building process. They have already proved themselves by renovating our new children’s home most excellently. We can’t wait to see the finished product.
We want to declare with David in Psalm 18: 1-3 and 28-33. (Read the whole of Psalm 18)
“ I love you o Lord my strength. The Lord is my Rock, my fortress and my deliverer, my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I call to the lord, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my enemies. You o Lord keep my lamp burning, my God turn my
darkness into light. With your help I can advance against a troop, with my God I can scale a wall. As for God, His way is perfect, and the word of the Lord is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in Him. For who is God besides the Lord? And who is the Rock except our God? It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to stand on the heights.”
Sing with us: The steadfast love of the Lord never seizes His mercies come to an end They are new every morning New every morning.
Great is Thy faithfulness o Lord Great is Thy faithfulness. Lamentation 3:22-24
We pray for God’s blessings over you. Gerrit and Ami, Gideon and Agape family.
 Safety for the Agape Family Finances for all renovations

Translate »