MISSIONAL COMMUNITY CRESTHOLME
MICHAEL & PAULA STRYDOM
Frontier Church was launched in Crestholme, but within a few months the venue we were meeting at closed down. With limited finances, there was no other suitable place available, which made it necessary to move to our home in Forest Hills. In the following year we remained steadfast to the vision placed on our hearts for Crestholme and surrounds. Through many challenges we did not settle and get comfortable; we knew God had something better, but when? How? We kept praying and asking those questions, trusting for a miracle!
Then we met Mark. He contacted us regarding our community project and as our friendship grew, dreams were shared and he told us he wanted land for his vision. After some months passed, Mark came to us and said he had found a piece of land in Crestholme that would meet his needs, that there was a house on it and since he had no need for the house he would love us to use it for our Church.
The excitement growing in our hearts was hard to contain. Could this be it? We were blown away when Mark told us that he did not want us to pay rent.
As we all drove down the long overgrown driveway, the house, which none of us had seen, remained hidden. The peace of God filled our hearts and we knew this was going to be our new home. He had answered our prayers.
The beauty of seeing the world through God’s eyes is to see things as they should be, as He intended them to be… We saw the big old house, with lots of brokenness, we saw the neglect and piles of rubbish. We also saw what love could do in this place – restore, rebuild and renovate. Not just the building, but the lives of the people who will meet inside.
MISSIONAL COMMUNITY WESTVILLE NORTH
“Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:19-20
This verse was the catalyst to Sean and I starting a missional community in Westville North, and when we felt God telling us it was time to start Sunday morning services, we were eager to be obedient. The only thing we needed was a venue. We tried several avenues, but were unsuccessful and then our friend, Warren, sensed God was telling him to go back to the house he grew up in. It had been bought by a couple who had turned it into a school.
When Warren went to see them, the lady told him that when they were buying the house, there was a problem with the bond. Warren’s brother-in-law had prayed with them, and the bond had come through. They were more than happy for us to use their school free of charge because they felt that it would be good for the community – we just had to ask the neighbours for their permission.
The first neighbour Warren went to see is a devout Muslim. Warren introduced himself and when he mentioned that we want to start Sunday services at the school, the neighbour stopped him. He had been watching TV that morning and the Imam (Islamic “Priest”) had told his listeners to respect the people of the book. He explained that the book is the Bible, and the people of the book are Christians, so he figured since God had told him to respect us, not only may we hold our Sunday meetings, but we can use his property for overflow parking!
We have had a favourable response from all the neighbours and recently held our first Sunday meeting. We are so excited to see what God is going to do next!