Sikunye: The team reflects on 2021Common Good
Who makes up the Sikunye team? If you have read the Sikunye year in review ((URL)), you might be wondering: who are the people behind this work? If you have attended any of our webinars or events, you would have met us and heard our passion for reaching churches across South Africa. We have been reflecting on the year and thought we’d share our hearts with you how each of us experienced 2021. Good to meet you!
Joined Sikunye February 2020
What has encouraged me and encourages me each time we have a webinar is seeing a pastor or a congregant come for the first time and hearing about the significance of the First Thousand Days, and ‘Boom!’, the lights go on and already they are starting to think about the changes that they can make in their churches and their communities. That always blesses my heart each and every time and I am so encouraged that I get to be a part of what God is doing and that has been my experience in 2021.
Joined Sikunye August 2018
“For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” Matthew 18:20
If one thing lockdown has made possible, it is the ability to reach into cities, communities, villages, and homes across our nation – building a network of men and women who want to see a new and thriving South Africa! Zoom and other apps have made that possible – With our little team of 4, Matthew 18:20 has definitely rung true where we have been stretched and pushed out of our comfort zones, but we adapted and have grown as a team, by calling on Him, trusting in Him and faithfully doing His work. He has been there every step of the way – and in these times, made a way to grow the network of churches to impact families! Who knows what the next year holds – but I trust that as we meet and call upon Him, he will be there to lead the way!
Joined Sikunye even before it was called Sikunye – July 2014
I feel honoured to be part of and witness first-hand the growth and innovation that has taken place over this last year. Seeing the beginnings of something new is a privilege and to watch the dynamic story unfold. Embracing the digital space, it has opened a whole new opportunity for being able to meet church leaders from all over. It has been exciting to find these new churches on google maps and see pins popping up across the nation. It is humbling to be in Zoom rooms with people from all walks of life talking about the important topics related to FTD and the church. This all makes my work very rewarding. I get to witness this vision that God gave us unfolding.
At the same time 2021 has been a very tough year – hearing stories of heartbreak, illness, loss, and grief as we have all journeyed through this global pandemic that has very tangibly impacted everyone. I am grateful to be able to stand with each other in prayer and trust for God’s compassion and care for all those who are carrying significant burdens.
Joined Common Good in 2013 and Sikunye in 2019
I think I can summarize the year by sharing what I told the Sikunye community mobilisers in November. We were talking about advice that had been shared with us that had a particular impact in our lives. I quickly recognized that the advice I heard when I was younger reflects what life in the Sikunye team has been like in 2021: Try everything once for the glory of God.
We have had so many ‘firsts’ this year. I wish you could have had a window into our team meetings, where you could have seen us grappling with the big problems and opportunities that came our way. In addition to testing our theory of change, we have had to rapidly expand our programme from being in-person to being nationwide – and faced external realities of lockdown, facilitating webinars in loadshedding and overcoming technological barriers. This has led to many times where we said, “Let’s try this and learn from it” And, by God’s grace, we have seen fruitfulness and his favour. Not everything went according to our plans and ideas, and we are grateful that our Heavenly Father is leading and guiding us. We can’t see around the corner, but he does and prepares us for the adventure he has called us to.
I want to commend the Sikunye team for their innovation, their passion and their commitment to this vision. They have consistently put their very best into new initiatives, systems, technology and events. It feels like each month held a new “We’ve never done this before”.
I hope that as you look at the families in your church and community and wonder how you can serve and support them, just remember, “Try everything once for the glory of God”