The question people so often ask me is: “Retah, how must I do it?” Step by step my friend, with your eyes fixed on God – that is the only way. I have been away from home for the last couple of weeks. First I was in Israel for a few days, and then I went to Namibia with my family to spend the school holidays there. I had my laptop with me, but I didn’t have internet access so I couldn’t post a web letter. I told myself that I could relax, because I couldn’t get any work done anyway. I have learned not to be so hard on myself anymore. I know that God’s timing is perfect. There is a time for everything in life, and the last few days was time set apart to spend with my family. I am also very jealous of my time with my family, and I don’t want to share it with my work. Whenever I took out my laptop to make an attempt at doing a bit of work, I could see the expression of sadness on Josh’s face – that was my reason for being so quiet the last couple of weeks.
I went to Israel to attend the Mandate Africa conference, and also to meet up with the Israeli tour operators who are helping us to organize another tour to Israel in November. My personal assistant Judike went with me, and we had such an amazing time! We stayed in a small flat in the Jewish section of the Old City and every morning we were woken up by the sounds of Jewish families making their way into the Old City over the cobblestones.
The Mandate Africa event was held at the King of Kings auditorium on the Wednesday evening, and it was a night I’ll never forget. Lindie Gouws from MyWold Ministries was led by the Lord to “call in the Tribes, and call up the prophets” in a prophetic journey and alignment of Africa and Israel. Each of the twelve tribes of Israel was prophetically represented by a group of African delegates that came from all across our continent to stand in the gap for Africa. On the night of the big event there was worship in singing and dancing in the way that only African’s can do it; and Lindie also handed the mayor of Jerusalem a key (from the small town of Oudtshoorn, also known as the “little Jerusalem” of South-Africa) as a symbolic act that Israel is welcome in South-Africa.
Each of the twelve “tribes” sent up a representative to pray and repent on behalf of the whole tribe. None of the prayers were rehearsed or scripted, and each leader of the tribe brought what the Lord laid on their heart. The anointing was so think while this went on, and I truly believe that what happened in Jerusalem on the 28th of March 2012, will have a ripple effect on South-Africa for generations to come.
It was truly a highlight of my life to be in Jerusalem on my knees, worshipping the King of kings and repenting from all the idolatry and iniquity that keeps Africa in bondage. I have heard the voice of the Lord so many times before saying: “Retah, I want to pour out My holy fire on Africa and it will spread across the whole word; but before I can do that there needs to be repentance for the worship of all the false gods, idolatry and ancestral worship.” I believe that what we did at Mandate Africa was a part of this call to repentance from the Lord.
I was so aware of the presence of the Holy Spirit in Israel. In the natural, the nation of Israel also has a ceremony a few days before the Mandate Africa conference to honour their Kings – people like David and Solomon and Hezekiah. As determined by the divine timing of the Lord, as representatives of the nation of Africa, we honoured another King – the King above all kings: Yeshua the Messiah.
After the conference I flew back to South-Africa the next day to meet my family at OR Tambo airport to fly to Namibia directly. My family and I had a wonderful time in the Namib Desert. The people of Africa are such friendly people. Tinus shot his first buck – a springbuck. He really enjoyed the wildlife adventure, and we were all so excited with him! For the last seven years he has been spending weekend after weekend cooped up at home. At the times when Aldo was sick, he didn’t even put his foot out of the door on some weekends. We all paid a high price to be where we are today, even Josh, but I know that the season has turned. We are still walking step by step through Aldo’s trauma and pain, but I know that we are making progress. With every step we are one step closer to the finish line. As a family we can start ministering together, travelling together, and enjoy life together. In the past I ministered across the world but I only worked while I was there – I didn’t allow myself time to enjoy the interesting places because I couldn’t forget how much my family was suffering back home. It’s not necessarily right, but I couldn’t enjoy anything without them. Now, for the first time in almost eight years, we can start enjoying things together.
In Namibia we visited a game farm and Josh enjoyed that tremendously – that was also where Tinus shot the springbuck. After that we went to Brandberg Lodge that is labelled as the home of the desert elephant. To be there is to experience Africa at it’s best! And then we spent a few days in Swakopmund, a beautiful town on the cost. There we just relaxed.
As we made our journey back home, Josh asked me on the way to the airport, “When does the school start again, Mom?” (Photo: Josh planting an olive tree in Namibia) “Probably in a day or two, Josh. I’m not sure. But don’t stress – you’ll be fine.”
When we arrived in South-Africa, Josh received a text message saying: See you at school tomorrow Josh! Tinus and I looked at each other and started laughing. I was already late on the Sunday evening and we hadn’t gotten his school stuff ready yet. But at least we had a lot of fun enjoying each other and the beautiful Namib – that is more important! The McPhersies have learned to relax and enjoy every moment – life is too short to get stressed up about the little things.
“Josh, don’t worry,” we told him. “Tomorrow is a new day, and you’ll be refreshed and ready for the new term. You enjoyed your holiday, and we’ll take it day by day whatever comes next.”
At 12 o’clock that evening I finally climbed into bed. My time with my family was so wonderful Lord, thank You, thank You, thank You! (Photo: Namib desert) The road to healing through Aldo’s trauma is challenging; believe me. I shed fresh tears this holiday, because I recognized some things in Aldo that can either make me discouraged or excited. I am starting to understand this battle we fight much better; and because I know that the blood of the Lamb is the answer, I just need to identify the problem, and ask God to show me how to take the next step to complete healing.
I have noticed that certain defence mechanisms hinder Aldo’s inner healing. You will only be able to pick it up when the Holy Spirit leads you to see your family and children, and even yourself, through God’s eyes. Many people don’t even realize that they have put up these defence mechanisms (or walls) that hinder their emotional wounds from healing.
Holy Spirit is always eager and ready to heal us, and I believe that when we are not walking in the complete wholeness that something is blocking it from manifesting. With Aldo I have found that in the one area where we keep on struggling for breakthrough, there is a defence mechanism in place that tries to protect the wound from getting hurt further – but at the same time is acts as a wall that prevents the glory light of Christ from penetrating and healing the wound. Once Satan has inflicted a wound to your soul, he wants to ensure that it doesn’t heal. That is where he tricks us into putting up defence mechanisms that is an ungodly reaction within yourself that is designed to keep you from more pain – or so you think. Any reaction like fear, unforgiveness, rebellion or blame-shifting will rise up when that area perceives that pain is coming. It works as a wall to protect us from outside pain, but in the process the wall also keeps us locked inside.
Unfortunately the very thing that rises up to keep us from being hurt, is the same thing that prevents our wounds from healing. Holy Spirit is waiting for us to lay down our defence mechanisms to Him, so that we can receive healing. The defence mechanism is rooted in the desire to be independent and to protect ourselves. In the end we don’t want to trust God with our pain, being so scared that we will be hurt again. When we build these walls we are relying on our fears, or rebellion or unforgiveness to protect us from getting hurt again – rather than to lay all of our burdens before Yeshua so that we can take His yoke upon us. When we lay down our defence mechanisms we also become vulnerable – and that is what people are afraid of… but in our weakness, His strength is made perfect (see 2 Cor. 12:9).
I will teach more about how to recognize some of these defence mechanisms in my upcoming video’s, and the danger of the words: “I will not allow myself to be hurt again.” Instead we need to be saying: “Lord Jesus, I give you all my pain. Please help me to get through this trial. Thank You that I can face this storm with You.”
I will never give up on helping Aldo, no matter how difficult our journey may be. He is just a normal human being, with wounds, pain and trauma – but the wonderful news is that Yeshua paid the price in full on the cross for his healing.
I can see that he is so happy that his Mom is finally starting to understand these things that keep parts of him in captivity, bound by his trauma. Sometimes I wonder why I have to learn everything the hard way, but then I just remind myself of what Yeshua said: “Retah, you will only preach what you have tasted for yourself.”
We are busy with the final stages of my new book about the Kingdom of God. As I proof read the text for the last time I just realize again that you can’t teach about anything unless you have lived it yourself.
I will be baptizing 23 people this afternoon in the small swimming pool at my office. I am so excited that so many people are responding to God’s call, and that they are ready to make a public declaration to follow Christ. The desire to be baptised can only come from the Holy Spirit, and I am so thankful to be a witness of their decision to follow Christ.
I’ll be in Cape Town again this weekend to minister at Wortelgat near Hermanus. Not only are the people looking forward to it, but I am too! I know from past experiences that the Holy Spirit touches everyone with so much love at these camps. There is just an open heaven there. The place reminds me of the Sea of Galilee, and we allow an opportunity for people to be baptized in the sea during the course of the weekend. What a privilege to experience all these things!
We are taking another tour to Israel in November. We are still busy finalizing the details, but we will try to put information about the tour on the web-site as soon as possible. I honour Abba for the opportunity we have to experience the land He promised as an inheritance to Abraham. I read to Josh from Psalm 48 last night about the Holy City of Jerusalem, and I thought back about my week in the Holy City not too long ago. In one word, our trip was FANTASTIC. I jogged through the streets of Jerusalem early in the mornings and I felt so free! I was aware of the presence of God the whole time. It was the most wonderful time exercising I have ever experienced – and very different from jogging in the security estates among the wild life in South-Africa.
Great is the LORD, and most worthy of praise, in the city of our God, his holy mountain.
Beautiful in its loftiness, the joy of the whole earth, like the heights of Zaphon is Mount Zion, the city of the Great King. God is in her citadels; he has shown himself to be her fortress (Psalm 48:1-3).
Much love and blessings to you – and remember: step by step.
Retah and family.