Monday, May 25, 2009

Dear Wallace (and all friends)

Sorry that I'm not phoning everyone with this news, but please understand that I have a limited phone budget. I cannot thank Wallace enough for his comment a couple of days ago. I spent some time with my GP who informed me that my BE has no dysplasia (good news). I nevertheless have to seriously consider having my hiatus hernia repaired quite soon. It is about 5cm long.

I Googled EMR and the Halo360 therapies and wrote to several medical firms around the world asking whether this treatment is available in South Africa. Nothing was forthcoming. I then spoke to my GI, who told me about EMD, which is very new in S.A. and worth considering.

Then, out of the blue, a gentleman phoned me today who is the director of a company trying to bring the Halo360 technology to South Africa. He got hold of my details through one of the many e-mails I sent out. He told me that my GI and his partner are interested in launching the Halo360 in South Africa (co-incidence?) and asked me whether I would consider being one of the first people in S.A. to receive this treatment as part of a "demonstration" to GI's of what the therapy can do. It entails one half hour treatment, followed by a screening (and possibly a small procedure to get the rest of the Barrett's out) 3 months later. Clinical trials have yielded excellent results and there is a 98% success rate of removing non-dysplastic Barrett's completely!

They are basically waiting for the South African medical aids to approve the therapy, which will take about a month or two, but failing which, the therapy will cost in the region of R45 000.

On Thursday I will see my GI and talk about this possibility. Please pray for me, the GI, our medical aid and all involved to make the right decision for my case. If the medical aid does not cover, then please buy my "28 days book" (My sense of humour is returning slowly).

Thank you to all who have phoned and prayed. It really means a lot to me.

Wallace, you are constantly in my prayers and I do pray that medicine will continue to develop to help us both, and many other people around the world. Thanks again, Wallace, you may just have sparked a new field of healing in South Africa.

During the past week I fell into a severe depression, but as days passed, unexpected people "popped-up" into my life. I felt left out in the cold by God, but looking back I know that God has been with me. I am experiencing healing in my spirit, my soul and my mind from hurts that have traveled with me for a very long time. I hope my body will soon be healed as well.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Barrett's esophagus

Yesterday I was diagnosed as having Barrett's Esophagus. It is when the esophageal tissue starts changing into the same tissue which represents the intestine. This condition is not reversible and increases my risk of developing esophageal cancer. I now have to eat more meals more regularly, sleep at an angle and have to go for an annual biopsy.

It is a condition which can be managed, and if done well, will not be the cause of death.

I am scared. I don't want this to develop into cancer. I want to see my boys grow up. That's all.

Friday, May 08, 2009

New book: 28 Days of Prayer during financial crisis

Dear Friends

I am happy to announce that my new book "28 Days of Prayer during financial crisis" is in print and available from Africa Upper Room Ministries.

What is this book about? Well, first I need to make it explicitly clear that this is NOT a Prosperity Theology book. It is a resource providing a 4-week journey in recognizing God's presence, even during global financial crisis. It offers some points for consideration on how we view ministry, management of what is at our disposal and, most of all, the ability to speak honestly to God about that which creates fear and anxiety in our lives. I have incorporated much of what John Wesley said about money and trust that this will provide encouragement for the road ahead. Order forms can be downloaded from the sidebar to the right.

God bless.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

A present from God.

I always think that beautiful sunsets are God's gift to those who experienced a hard day. My friends, Pete and Dion, are surrounded by beautiful scenery every single day. Where we stay, we have gorgeous highveld sunsets. This is taken about 100m from our house. I did not use any filters. This is what you get almost every day as we near winter:

Friday, May 01, 2009

Workers' Day

The 1st of May in South Africa is a public holiday - Workers' Day. It is a day where "Workers" are acknowledged and remembered.

Strange thing I noticed: Going to the mall, all the shops were still open. People were still working... oh, wait... some people were still working...the workers! Who was sitting in the restaurants with their families? People with label-clothing, expensive cellphones, eating pretty expensive meals. The workers were still working. Today they got double pay, because it is a public holiday. So, perhaps they chose to work today for financial reasons.

So, here's a suggestion: How about on Workers' Day, everybody goes to work, but workers get paid double rates while everybody from managerial level upwards work for half their day's salary?

Just a thought.

Guilt - Believing in God in order to avoid Hell.

Someone reminded me that "...when something makes us feel guilty, we tend to forget it, not wanting to go back to it".

I thought this was very profound. It is something that we all struggle with. I find it very sad that many preachers and evangelists use the "guilt-trip" method to convince people that they need God. "You are not good enough", "You don't give enough", "You must pray more...believe better...know more of your Bible".

It's amazing that Jesus never seemed to have such a conversation with people who were genuinely searching. The woman at the well met a man who simply asked her for water. All the other Jewish men reminded her that she was not good enough, simply because she was not "one of them". The list continues.

I like the following formula: "Religion teaches that if I do something, God will do something in return. Christianity teaches that God has already acted, we simply respond."

"He does not deal with us according to our sins..." This is what Scripture says. God does not go out of God's way to make us feel guilty. No. I believe in a God who showers us with love and grace. Being exposed to this, we may feel remorse, but not guilt. What do you think?