So I was so blessed and honored to have my father travel with me to South Africa about a month ago. I knew (being Daddy’s girl) that it would be hard for him (and me) to let me move so far away from home. So of course I was accepting to him coming with me. And after spending 3 weeks with him helping me get settled and take care of all the necessary but labor intensive tasks I am very grateful he was able to come with me. So below is my Dad’s response to our trip and I hope it touches you in a deep place like it did for me! *Warning* You may want to have some tissue handy after reading this!
“And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, And hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the Lord, which call thee by name am the God of Israel.”
– Isaiah 45:3. KJV
Wow, talk about blessings unseen and seemingly un-deserved. After spending nearly three weeks in South Africa; mostly in a small town outside of Port Elisabeth (Grahamstown), I can truly say I’ve been blessed. Observing how modestly these people live their lives, from the poor brother begging for pennies on the street, to the white elites that control the lives and destiny of the original people. I can truly say that we, as Americans, are truly a blessed people. The things we take for granted are considered luxuries to South African’s. It has truly been an eye opening experience that I will treasure for the rest of my life.
It’s interesting how easy it is to lose sight of what’s truly important in life as we go about our daily pursuits, oftentimes not even realizing the amazing hidden treasures right under our noses.
That was certainly my case, as I busied myself with the pursuit of the American dream of getting more stuff and keeping up with the Joneses. Failing to appreciate or even realize the hidden riches in secret places.
As I made my way back to the US, traveling some twenty plus hours, most of it in the air, I had some time to take stock of things and really evaluate what is truly important in this life and where my true treasures are.
– Candace -Williams Brown: What a blessing she is and has been to her mother and me. I’m amazed at the many gifts she has, I mean I know she has always been talented and capable of achieving whatever she set out to do, but, to see her as a mom and how she exemplifies motherhood just warms my heart. What a blessing she has been and continues to be as she and Jeff nurtures and raises our gift of a grandson.
– Clarissa Williams: My quiet storm. There’s an old saying: “Still Waters Run Deep.” This personifies our Clarissa in a nutshell. At the tender age of 23 she has already accomplished many great things: an honor graduate from the prestigious Clemson University, a writer and a trail blazer taking on one of the most profound issues plaguing black women and girls in America, and as I discovered in South Africa as well—natural hair. Clarissa is my gift of a quiet resolve, not speaking loud but certainly being heard loud and clear. What a blessing she is!
– Brandon Williams: My son! I guess you can almost see my chest popped out when I say MY son. Not that my daughters are any less loved or appreciated, God knows my daughters are the air I breathe.
But for a man to have a son… Brandon is the kind of young man I think most fathers would like their daughters to marry. This young man has amazed me in so many ways, words cannot express, even now, as he prepares to complete his undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering. What a gift from God he has been to his mom and me.
– Sarah Williams: Sarah has always been a peculiar child…
“Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine.”
As a child we could always rely on Sarah to keep things going. She was always the big jokester in the house but outside of the house very reserved. What she wasn’t, at least from what I could see, was very adventurous; but boy was I wrong.
Busying myself with life’s pursuit and trying my best to provide, I may have missed some things.
“There are hidden riches in secret places.”
Twenty two plus hours from the US to South Africa, three long flights, layovers and an hour and a half drive to some small college town in South Africa, all the while I’m trying to come to grips as to why my second oldest child has determined that this is where God has called her.
I know, God didn’t call me He called her, and I know, it’s not given to me to understand and that’s why we rely on FAITH. Yea, yea, I get it.
But, why couldn’t she choose a college in the US?
“The hardest thing you will ever do, as a parent, is to let them go.”
Because as a parent, as a dad, you never believe that anyone can take care of your child like you can.
Nearly three weeks in beautiful South Africa, most of the time spent in a little college town (Grahamstown) busying ourselves getting my second oldest child settled. It was not until three days prior to my departure back to the US—alone—that God allowed me to see the true reason for Sarah’s passion for this country and her destiny.
The Lebone Center –
Ten minutes after entering this oasis for underprivileged and under-served center for some of South Africa’s “least of these,” Sarah had memorized the names of sixteen beautiful eager children. It was like she glowed with such a light. That day, it was glaringly obvious to me why she was back in South Africa.
Devine Destiny –
“And I will give thee the treasures of darkness, and hidden riches of secret places, that thou mayest know that I, the Lord, which call thee by name am the God of Israel.”
– Isaiah 45:3. KJV
I’m so blessed!
Check out my daughter’s blog: https://adventuresofaschoolteacher.org/
You will be blessed too…