After almost 5 years of living in Cape Town, South Africa, our family is ready to say farewell and move into our next season of life in Africa… But this time, a bit north and east in a place called Arusha, Tanzania.
But, before leaving, there are a few things we must say to you, South Africa.
You really do have the gift of African hospitality. Even when outsiders manage to take over your space and offend your customs, you still make us feel so wanted. You have the gift of welcome.
Oh, and we love to eat, South Africa. And so do you. Perhaps it's why we got along so well. Your biltong ruined us. Your Rooibos quenched us. Your rusks comforted us. Your pap prepared us. And your nyama spoiled us for life! Lekker, lekker braais that we will never forget.
Although I have only been in about 30 countries, there is nothing like you on the earth. You give meaning to unparalleled beauty. From the lowveld to the highveld, the forrest, to the dessert...from the oceans to the mountains, your vistas and sights are as stunning and diverse as your people...
Your people! They're what changed us the most. South Africa, you have a very unique gift found few other places on earth. You need to know about this gift. You offer a world class, full-time cultural school and learning laboratory for all who come. Living here, you don't just learn South African culture. You learn to know black South Africans and how they live. You learn to know Afrikaners and what they value. You learn to discover coloured culture and what make it thrive. As if that's not enough, you get the privilege of growing to know about Zimbabweans and Malawians and Zambians and Mozambicans and Ethiopians and Somalians. A school of culture. South Africa, you have had the ability to teach us more about culture in five years then some countries could teach us in 25 years. Thank you for making us aware and sensitive, and for broadening and deepening our love for the people of this great continent.
But perhaps above it all, what we value and cherish most about you, South Africa, is your spiritual hunger and openness. We have been astounded at just how many moves of God you have started, hosted and fueled for the kingdom! Countless ministries, NGOs, NPOs, churches and movements have been started and sustained within your borders that are now impacting the entire African continent… And even the world. Thank you! Thank you for opening up your land, your buildings, your communities and your hearts to us...for the Lord.
So, this is our tribute to you, South Africa! Our family says thank you for these life-changing years with you.