16 August 2023

Reclaiming hope in a broken home

“My father physically and emotionally abused my mother. Witnessing their constant fighting and the mistreatment of my mother deeply affected me.

Our family went through a lot of turmoil. The chaos and financial struggles were overwhelming, and as the youngest of seven children, I felt helpless and tried to cling to my mother for support. I vividly remember one night when my father pushed my mother out of the house during an argument. The situation affected my studies a great deal. Every challenge I faced reminded me that there was no peace at home.

My relationship with my father was strained. I was considered the black sheep of the family because I resembled my mother more than my siblings. My father often said hurtful things, claiming that I did not belong to the family. These words fuelled my hatred towards him, leading me to disrespect him openly. Unfortunately, this bitterness and aggression isolated me and affected my relationships with my siblings.

However, my life took a turn for the better when my sister invited me to attend services in the Universal Church. During the service, I felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. The teachings at the church focused on forgiveness, and I learned that if I did not forgive, I would not be forgiven either. With the help of God, I mustered the courage to forgive my father and also to seek forgiveness from him. Sadly, he passed away shortly after our reconciliation because he was ill.

This experience made me realise the importance of the Holy Spirit in my life. I understood that without God, I could not truly transform or find peace. Today, my life is filled with blessings. I no longer harbour resentment. I work in a reputable company and can provide for my family. Only the Holy Spirit made this possible,” said Ditshwanelo.