Imitating God

Over the past few months I have been using an app to help me spend better/more time in the Word, and allow the Word to challenge me. The app’s name is Like Jesus. The reason I am writing about it today is because of the Scripture it gave me. Ephesians 5:1 – “Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children.”

As a father of 2 boys, I see how they imitate me in actions and in words. It’s eye-opening about my own character and on a level, I want them to better than me. As a parent we also have expectations for certain milestones to be reached. Currently Vincent is taking his time with the speech ability milestone. So we, mostly Pravani, are doing exercises to encourage Vincent to use words and we have also scheduled an appointment with a speech therapist for next term to evaluate his speech and come up with a plan of action.

Now to bring it back to us and God – the Bible tells us in John 1:12 that if we accept Jesus as our Lord and Saviour, we will be children of God. And Paul encourages us in Ephesians 5:1 that we should imitate God. The challenge is that we don’t always know what to do. We need an expert to help us. That is where the church (the body of Christ) comes in – believers who have gone through similar challenges, men and women who you can see have a relationship with God and are growing in their faith. The key is to walk a path with them, so that we can grow together towards God. The manual that helps us, is of course the Bible.

Please pray for Vincent and our journey with him as we keep building into him. We will also be praying for you to grow to as God’s children daily.

Nicholas

P.S. Don’t worry that we are leaving Kiran behind. He is imitating Vincent and learning fast.

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Family here, family there, family everywhere

Over a period of 2 weekends we had a Kelderman 60 year celebration weekend and a Pillay family reunion. Not to mention all the February and March birthdays within the family. We have seen family more in the past few months than the previous 8 years, and it is awesome and overwhelming.

Below are pictures from the Kelderman 60 year celebration. My grandparents migrated from Holland in 1958 with their 3 sons. My cousin decided that a weekend camp would be the best way to commemorate this. Hearing stories, playing games, swimming and catching up with uncles, aunts and cousins was great. But the best part of the weekend was hearing the family history – the cost of leaving behind everything familiar and by faith in God embracing an unknown future.

The Pillay family reunion was a celebration of birthdays – the most special of which was Pravani’s dad turning 75. It was also arranged as an opportunity to bring the extended family together to remember a very special address – 101 Horsham Road, Clairwood. We heard the family story of how the house came to be and how many generations of the Pillay family lived in it. We even had the opportunity of placing our names and the names of our children on the family tree. It was amazing to see our part in the legacy of generosity, hard work and the love of family. Pravani’s dad also had the opportunity to share about his love for cars and the many weird and wonderful types he’s owned over the years.

These family occasions, including the birthdays, make us so grateful to be back in Gauteng. Our boys are getting to know their cousins and we get to spend precious time with our parents and siblings. My dad’s brother shared with us how hard it was migrating from Holland and not having any extended family around. No grandparents, cousins, aunts or uncles. It made me realise the amazing gift we have of living closer and how much my boys need family.

So my thought for this update, or rather it might be a question, are there any family members you need to make peace with, or give a call just to say hi? Think about it.

Have a blessed day.

Nicholas

WIGs and things…

If you’ve encountered other missionaries from CCC you may hear them say we’re one big family. With this in mind, saying goodbye to our Cape Town team and saying hello to our Pretoria team was kind of like getting reacquainted with our cousins. Still though, fitting in with a new team does require some intention of the heart. As I pulled out my bran muffins from the oven and heard my house filling with familiar sounds of my colleagues, I knew that staff meetings at home were going to continue to be a joy, just like they were in Cape Town.

Boring staff meeting? Never! Here we are at my place picking out a new WIG.  Left to right: Pravani, Lydia, Renier (our team leader), Ruan and Thabiso

We got around my dining room table and starting talking about our WIGS (I see that raised eyebrow of yours! Just hold on this isn’t the hairy kind, I’ll explain). WIG is an acronym that stands for Wildly Important Goal. It’s something we can strive towards as a team – wildly! At each staff meeting we will touch on it briefly and celebrate how close we are to reaching it. The WIG that seemed to “fit” our team best was to achieve 100% of our goals for ministry partnerships this year. At the next meeting we took the time to evaluate our personal current reality using a SWOT analysis and discussed our findings. This was so helpful because we could identify with each other’s weaknesses and be encouraged by each other’s strengths. From there we each plotted our own strategic plan for achieving our goals. I took this plan to Nicholas and together we’re working on reaching our goal. Our first step is getting in touch with our Gauteng ministry partners. If you’re in Gauteng and haven’t heard from us, please send me a Whatsapp or email so that we can get together.

Getting strategic about our plans. We enjoy meeting at The Hub at Universiteitsoord next to University of Pretoria.

One part of our strategic plan was to figure out our schedule. Nicholas and I have worked on a schedule that allows me to spend enough time at home with the boys, connection time with other mommies and time with my team. We are trusting the Lord that we will be able to enroll Vincent into a playschool soon but for the moment he is enjoying spending his days at home with mommy and his little brother. He is making friends with the other kids in our apartment building and it is a joy watching him interact. Kiran is racing towards the two-year old milestone and not stopping for anyone! He is wearing bigger clothes, eating almost as much as his brother and learning how to express himself both to us and to strangers. For now, his Afrikaans is developing faster than his English and it is adorable!

Bouncing baby boys! Vincent and Kiran usually enjoy a good bounce in the morning until Kiran is tired enough for a nap 🙂

This is a new and joyful season for us as a family. There is much to get used to but there is also enough support for us to maintain certain routines. We thank the Lord for our date nights, family tea time and special visits with cousins and grandparents. If you’re in Pretoria and are able to visit – please contact me, we would love to see you!

Our sushi date night sponsored by friends of ours was such a treat! Nic had just a “few” more plates than I did 😉

When the cat’s away the mice will play! Nicholas and the boys enjoy some “guy time” when I’m at our weekly staff meeting. This is such a sweet blessing!

A quick January update

Here is a quick update regarding January.

Firstly, as you could see by the last update video, we have found a home in Pretoria and have been settling in since 14 January 2018. It has been a blessed time and Pravani has made sure we had a few guests over as soon as we had the kettle out to make tea and coffee. The boys are also getting used to the new home and have found fun in every moment of order and chaos.

Regarding ministry, my team set aside the last 2 weeks in January to work on our ministry platform. We focused on getting the basic lessons/modules in place, developing a vision-casting presentation, receiving e-coach training from Holland via Skype, and discovering how the team dynamics work with me in the same office as the rest of the team.

I am excited about our platform and I look forward to the soft launch that we will do by the end of February.

Thank you for reading our updates and keeping us in your thoughts and prayers.

Nicholas

The next adventure has begun

Happy New Year!

We are 3 weeks into the new year and our upside down lives have just found a foundation – our new home. We left the Cape at the end of November and have been housesitting for friends until now. It has been a blessing to experience God’s provision during this time, but I can say it certainly is a relief to finally have found a place to make a home. Below is a short video just to share our excitement.

For the rest of January I will be at the office focusing on the completion of our ministry website and receiving training from the Netherlands. Pravani will also be joining her new campus team soon and we’ll keep you updated on that.

Have a blessed day.

Nicholas

 

 

We have News

Here is a video update.

If you don’t have data to watch a video, don’t worry. Here is our news:

During my time in Gauteng, we came face to face with a hard decision. Maybe not so hard, but perfect in God’s timing.  Our national team leaders expressed their concerned with our level of support in the Cape, both financially and in physical help with the children. They gave us a few options to help solve this problem, and after prayer and discussion the option we landed on was to move back to Gauteng. The move will happen at the end of November. How will this move help us? Here are a few things we considered:

  • We will be closer to family, both Keldermans and Pillays.
  • We will still be full-time missionaries working for Campus Crusade for Christ:
    • I will be working with the rest of the Digital Strategy team, instead of working solo and reporting weekly via Skype.
    • Pravani will still be with the campus ministry but will now join the team on the University of Pretoria
  • Pravani will have other missionary moms around for support.
  • More than half of our Ministry Partners are based in Gauteng.

What is our plan for the next 2 months left in Cape Town?

We want to see all our Capetonian friends, Ministry Partners, and potential Ministry Partners. We need to pack up our lives and send our belongings on to Pretoria.

If you are on the above-mentioned list, and would like to get in touch with us, please feel free to Whatsapp, email or call us.

Have a great day.

Nicholas

What time is it?

At our Staff Conference this past April, one of the main speakers started off with the question “What time is it?” He continued to cast vision and direction for the ministry. But the question resonated with me. What time is it? Since the year started life has been harder. We have been sick on and off, almost like a tag team, sometimes all of us sick at once. We also experience that a few of our ministry partners are going through challenges, and we experience the consequences of those challenges by losing those financial investments. And because we are not reaching our monthly income goal, getting to minister through digital strategies feels like a far off dream. Okay, that is looking at the challenges. But the question remains, what time is it?

Over the past few months I have been walking a path with the pastor of my church, and in this time he has been helping me focus on the foundation of my calling. We worked through a variety of material, from doing a gifts assessment, to looking at my life verse. Some of these concepts might sound strange, but when we put the puzzle pieces together, it shows that I am in the right place. So by knowing my calling, it gives a foundation to stand on during tough times. This answers the question of purpose, but it doesn’t answer my question, “what time is it?”

The best place to find my answer is from God. Nice generic answer, right? But it is harder when you have been in a routine or habit and you have to break out of the comfort mould. Seek God’s face, instead of just reading scripture and doing a generic prayer. My comfort zone is not to read. I worked through a book by Andrew Murray called Jesus Himself. It felt more like a sermon, but it reminded me of the passion and excitement of being a follower for Jesus and why it’s the greatest gift of being part of Christ’s family.

So, what time is it?

It is time to connect with God, our maker. It is time to talk to you, our ministry partner. It is time to do what God has called us to do. It is time to connect with mentors, influencers, the lost for the sake of the gospel. It’s time to pray for us.

So please pray for:

  • Our health – that God will stop this cycle of sickness in our home.
  • Ministry Partner Development – That we will meet the right people who want to invest in our ministry
  • That we will continue to grow in our relationship with God and as a family.

Have a great day.

Nicholas