There is the biblical narrative of Yossef, a man sold into slavery by his brothers, eventually finding himself as a prisoner in Egypt. As time goes by, the monarch of Egypt, the Pharaoh, has a perplexing dream, and is unable to understand its meaning. After hearing the dream, Yossef helps the king understand that a time of plenty and abundance is expected within his realm of authority, proceeded by a time of famine and drought. The recommendation of Yossef in light of this foretelling was to store up in the time of plenty, so that there will be sustenance in the time of lack.
For you fashioned my inmost being; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I thank you because I am awesomely made, wonderfully; your works are wonders —I know this very well. – Dawid Ben Yishai
Watching a child grow up is an interesting thing. Seeing them learn about the world around them, and unconsciously form the personality within them, can leave one enchanted by the spell of God’s providence working in the macro and minute details of the world.
The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words, whose voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.
In them he has set a tent for the sun, which comes out like a bridegroom leaving his chamber, and, like a strong man, runs its course with joy.
Its rising is from the end of the heavens, and its circuit to the end of them, and there is nothing hidden from its heat.
Decolonisation. This seems to be the word of the day. University students throughout the country are fighting for a more Afro-centric curriculum without the baggage of the colonial past. Relaxed hair is now frowned upon by many, and natural hair is in. African print is en vogue. Animals are being slaughtered in suburban backyards. Children are being given long and hard to pronounce names. Yellow bones are losing to darker tones. Africa is coming back!
During my undergraduate years at the University at Cape Town, I stayed in the prestigious Smuts Hall, with halls rich in tradition and rooms with views of the city of Cape Town. 3 times a day, we used to walk over the parking lot to Fuller Hall for mealtimes, passing the now controversial statue of Cecil John Rhodes.
This is a rant. And I’m writing it at midnight. Which is not the best time to rant. But I’m awake. So I’m going to rant. Why are people talking about creating a Christian culture, or a Jesus culture*? What does that even mean?
African Bank has been the focus of recent business news in South Africa for the past few weeks. Everyone has suddenly become an ‘expert analyst’ on the woes of African Bank, and what they should have done differently. Should they have bought Ellerines? Should they have closed down their savings account offering and allowed for a diverse portfolio of profits? It’s easy to judge when looking back, but a lot more difficult to give guiding principles when looking forward.
For the past four years, I have really enjoyed reading history books, especially South African and East African history books. About a year and a half ago, I walked into a new bookshop in Rondebosch, Cape Town to see if they had any other books of interest. I came across this book about the origins of the ANC.
Isn’t it nice to have someone to blame?
Isn’t it nice to glide out our doors and see hurting, pain and injustice, and have someone to blame? Isn’t it nice to walk in our shoes with a hint of superiority perceiving our intentions greater than others’ actions? Isn’t it nice feeling secure in our fickle securities of achievement, thinking that it was only by our hard work and self-created circumstance that we have the privilege we do now, and others just didn’t work hard enough? Isn’t it nice to ask the question “What will I lose if I give of myself?” instead of “What will they lose if I don’t”? Isn’t it nice to have someone to blame?
Three years ago, a friend of mine and her dad bought me Outliers as a gift. Before this, I hadn’t really heard of Malcolm Gladwell except a few references to his book Tipping Point by people I considered somewhat intellectual. I gave the book a read, and it absolutely blew my mind! So when his new book, David and Goliath came out, I was reading pre-release statements, watching videos, and waiting in heavy anticipation for the book.