It was a few days before Christmas in 2017. He sat in the hired car, muttering some expletives (which cannot be repeated here) as he tried to retune the car radio. The family busy placing an order for take-out supper near their rented apartment on the KZN North Coast.
David, his wife and two young teenage children, had just arrived in Durban from Cape Town, as they had done the previous years, for their Christmas holiday. Just take-away supper for tonight – and the kids were not grumbling! While the family went to place their orders, David, using auto search, tried to reset the car’s radio to the local station ECR on 94/95fm. He could not understand why the radio in the rental car was not already pre-tuned to East Coast radio. As the auto search climbed, it stopped on 93.6fm …
David’s finger dropped. Tears began rolling down his face as he continued listening. Holy Spirit conviction came upon him. He sat mesmerised, listening to the live conversation between two men on GNCR 93.6fm that evening, the 19th December 2017. Although his wife and children attended a local church in Mitchells Plain, he had not been to a service for several years. He hushed his family up when they clambered back into the car. “Just listen!” he instructed them, wiping tears from his eyes. His children had never seen their father like this before. Ignoring the tempting aroma emanating from the packets of hot food on their laps, amazed at the quiet sobs coming openly from their husband and father, they listened through to the end of the programme. Then David told his family to bow their heads, and he prayed a prayer for forgiveness from God, and for forgiveness from his family.
The programme he had inadvertently tuned into was Good News Community Radio, 93.6fm. A weekly chat show hosted by Mike Harty called “Heart to heart”, dealing with the issues of alcoholism and drug addiction. Mike’s guest in studio this week before Christmas was Phil Kinder. They were discussing the true meaning of Christmas, and how there was no need to spend bonuses on copious amounts of alcohol to try to jollify the celebration of Christ the Saviour coming to Earth to redeem mankind.
The very next day, David searched the area looking for a Christian church that would be open on Christmas morning. In his own words David says, “Christmases past had been spent waking up late, and the kids opening their presents, and we would then meet the family at a local restaurant for luncheon. Afterwards, the men would sit around the garden drinking. I have no idea what the womenfolk and children did.”
David communicated this testimony to the offices of GNCR. Mike obtained David’s phone number, and when travelling to Cape Town after Easter made contact with him to inquire how he was progressing – the scattered seed was not only growing but multiplying!
David, who had his own glazing business in Strandfontein where he lived, was now active in a local church together with his family. He only discovered how many of his staff were Christian when he introduced a time of prayer in the company’s morning tea break. He states further that the first quarter of 2018 was the company’s most profitable quarter ever, even in a depressed economy. His staff seemed more friendly and relaxed, and David attributed all of this to God’s grace and mercy.
He invited his older brother to attend their Easter church services. For most of his life, David’s older brother had been sceptical and critical of the church but attended with his wife. Both of them made a salvation commitment, their first ever, that Good Friday. On Easter Sunday the pastor called any who had family needs forward for prayer. David’s brother and sister-in-law mentioned that their daughter, who had matriculated in 2017, had promptly left their family home and moved in with a boyfriend across the city. She had refused any attempts at contact with her parents. Being concerned for her welfare, their prayer request was for some news from or communication with their daughter. The pastor prayed accordingly.
The following morning the daughter telephoned her mother begging for the family’s forgiveness for her rash decision and behaviour, asking if she could please return home. She found out that this boyfriend was sleeping around, and making ever-increasing demands for money from her. The family was overjoyed, and their daughter returned home.
One problem – now she had no job. David’s receptionist had started maternity leave at Easter, so David employed his niece on a temporary basis to fill this gap. At her first company prayer meeting, this young girl broke down in tears and became the family’s newest born again believer. She was totally overcome by the change in her parents, their love, and her family’s care for her. And being led of the Lord, together with another lady on her uncle’s staff, they initiated a weekly meeting for women who were disillusioned with life.
At their second meeting, an attractive but distraught young woman attended the gathering. This woman was flummoxed as her gangster leader boyfriend had suddenly started behaving in a peculiar manner. The boyfriend stated categorically that he would not be sleeping with her anymore. Furthermore, he had given up the command of his gang. This has placed his own life at risk, but since he was summoned at a meeting by Angus Buchan, who prayed for him together with other gang leaders, he stated he needed to sort his life out. After discussion and counsel, this ex-gangster leader’s girlfriend also bowed her knee and committed her life to Jesus!
The initial seed, stumbled upon in a radio station search, is still multiplying and bearing fruit -all to the praise of the LORD!