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He is in the Boat - a message of healing and hope 

BY Mr Ken du Pisanie

MEMORIAL SERVICE FOR

JAYDE Panayiotou

24 April 2015

 

On one occasion the Lord was walking with his disciples next to a lake. They came to a boat, and he said to them, “Let’s go to the other side of the lake.” This was a faith statement. He knew, come what may, we are going to the other side of the lake. Half way into the journey, a terrible storm arose over the lake, threatening to sink the boat. The disciples were afraid, and looked for the Lord. But he was asleep in the boat. They woke him up and said, “Aren’t you afraid that we will drown?” He responded by saying, “Oh you of little faith. Have you forgotten that I promised to take you to the other side?”

Right now a terrible storm has arisen in your lives. It threatens to sink a large part of your existence. The storm has filled you with fear and anxiety and anger and questions and doubt… You want to shake your God awake and scream, “Are you not concerned that we are drowning???”

Friends, it may seem that God is asleep. But I want you to know that He is in the boat! I DON’T KNOW how he’s going to take you through this storm! I don’t understand the storm and I don’t have the answers to the storm! But I KNOW that He is in the boat! And as long as He is in the boat, this boat IS going to the other side!

Today I ask you: Just allow Him to be in your boat. You don’t have to like Him very much right now. You don’t have to understand His ways. You can even dislike Him and be doubtful of His ways. But simply allow Him to be in your boat. Allow Him to be present as you deal with a mountain load of pain and distress. He has promised to bring comfort and to give strength. Simply allow Him to, in His unique and beautiful way, bring that which He has promised and restore hope to your hurting heart.

Imagine … Nothing to kill or die for…
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one

(Imagine by John Lennon)

 

I never knew Jayde Panayiotou personally, only as a teacher of my daughter.  But I have a sense that she was a dreamer. Speaking to several of her friends, colleagues and pupils, one quickly realizes that Jayde Panayiotou was a person who brought light wherever she was. One of her favourite phrases was “Be the light.” Wherever there was darkness, she would bring light. If someone was feeling down or discouraged, she, through her words, actions or mere presence, brought a sense of hope. If someone was feeling sad or lonely, she would offer comfort and companionship. It seems that darkness seldom, if ever, got the better of her. On the contrary, she was an agent of light wherever she was, chasing out different forms of darkness around her and in people’s lives.

John 1:5 - The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.

I believe the greatest tribute that we can bring to Jayde is to continue shining the light she did, which the darkness cannot extinguish. Instead of allowing darkness through despair, we shine a light of hope. Instead of bringing darkness through fear, we shine a light of hope. Instead of bringing darkness in hate, we shine a light of hope.

One day I will say, and my children will say, and their children will say, “I have lived a life of light and love and hope, and the darkness has not extinguished it. And my light and my hope was motivated by a teacher that I knew in Uitenhage, who inspired me to live that life of light and hope, through the live she lived so well.”

Make me a channel of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me bring Your love,
Where there is injury, Your pardon Lord,
And where there's doubt, true faith in You

Make me a channel of your peace,
Where there's despair in life let me bring hope,
Where there is darkness - only light,
And where there's sadness, ever joy

(Jon Cohen)

 April 25, 2015
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