Every family has its own problems and getting rid of these is the aim of the “Trade in your Cross” chain of prayer. Family problems come in all shapes and sizes — some are simple and easy to handle, while others are more complicated and difficult. These meetings are currently under way in all UCKG churches throughout the country.
The “Trade in your Cross” is a chain of prayer for people who want to find a solution for their family issues. The chain of prayer which will last until 20th May is open to everyone who is willing and determined to trade in their problems. Speaking at the first service, held at the Cenacle of the Holy Spirit in Johannesburg, Bishop Marcelo Pires explained that the stone on the tomb of Lazarus, a beggar, symbolises the doubt which can only be overcome by faith. “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God,” he said. Family Testimony As a young man, Herbert understood the importance of the family unit and his responsibility as the head of his family. He worked for a retail shop for nine years earning too little to provide for all his family’s needs. He said that his financial problems began to stress him so much that he started to smoke and drink heavily. His drinking habit later turned into an addiction. “I would use all my salary on alcohol and I neglected my family,” he said. He also beat his wife in front of their four children. “I became a monster. My own children feared me so much that they never wanted to be with me. My wife sold alcohol in order to buy food for the children,” said Herbert.
His neighbour invited Herbert’s wife, Sannah, to the UCKG and she started to attend the services. She also took part in the chains of prayer on Thursdays for God to restore peace in her family. Six months later, God answered Sannah’s prayers as Herbert started to go to church. In the church he learnt about family and realised how he had forsaken his. He engaged himself in the chain of prayers every Thursday and followed the teachings of the church. They also received marriage counselling. “Slowly, I started to see the changes. Three months later, I was able to stop drinking and God restored love and peace in my family,” he said. He was also given a permanent position at work and his finances improved. “All my children are now in the church” he said. Universal News spoke to Herbert’s wife, Sannah, about how her husband’s life changed. “Our neighbours knew we fought every weekend. He would beat me and call me names in front of everyone. He didn’t eat the food I cooked. The children became angry and bitter towards him. At some point I feared that he wanted to kill me because he had a knife with him. However, through prayer, my husband changed completely. He became a loving and supportive family man,” she said.
By: Sibongile Mazibuko and Maggie Nyaunda