Before moving to South Africa last year. I read a BBC article about Lavender Hill one of the most dangerous communities on the outskirts of Cape Town. The article reported how gang violence had become so rampant there that the local citizens began taking the law into their own hands. Their community had become a literal war zone and they were desperate for any means to peace, but sadly, violence never overcomes violence.
I googled the location and found out this community is only a few kilometers away from our new home in Muizenberg. My heart was burdened for Lavender Hill and began to pray for the peace of God to overtake this place.
After moving here to Muizenberg, we would often drive past Lavender Hill and I would wonder, “Is there any one reaching out in the war zone, or all we all too scared?”
The first time we visited our church, Bay Community, a lady got up and announced that they had been regularly prayer walking Lavender Hill. They had opportunities to minister there, even to gang members. I knew at that moment, we belonged here. I needed to be a part of this bold community who did not fear to step into the war zone and take back the land in prayer and love.
In the upper room of the church, I have joined this rag tag band of intercessors, who gather weekly from every facet of society, race, age and background. They are united in one pursuit, to encounter the Kings of kings, be swept up in his love and bring forth this heavenly love to earth. Time stands still in these gatherings and hours seem like only minutes.
The other week we focused our prayers on Lavender Hill and the gang violence that has been raging out of control in the past weeks. The South African military was deployed and tankers filled the streets but with no end to violence in sight. Yet as we prayed for peace, God’s presence came and I knew something shifted, something happened that night as we prayed and I began to search the newspapers to see the answer.
Prayer becomes exciting when you find the answers on the local news. I heard reports on the radio that the gangs called a truce and that it has stayed. The gang leaders even implored the local churches and mosques to take care of the young boys that they had been grooming for gang warfare. This is what we prayed for, that the church would be ready to embrace the gangs. We still need to see this answered.
Now this crazy bunch of prayer warriors has permission to pray and worship in the police station every Saturday this month. Cannot wait to see the results of this… I’ll keep you posted!
Have you checked the paper lately for answers to your prayers?