To God be all the glory for keeping us together with our families until now. We say "Ebenezer" which when translated means "the Lord has kept us until this far" We are counting down to the New Year 2019.
We will find our Scripture reading in 2 Kings 22 verses 8 to 11:-
8 And Hilkiah the high priest said unto Shaphan the scribe, I have found the book of the law in the house of the LORD. And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan, and he read it. 9 And Shaphan the scribe came to the king, and brought the king word again, and said, Thy servants have gathered the money that was found in the house, and have delivered it into the hand of them that do the work, that have the oversight of the house of the LORD. note
10 And Shaphan the scribe shewed the king, saying, Hilkiah the priest hath delivered me a book. And Shaphan read it before the king. 11 And it came to pass, when the king had heard the words of the book of the law, that he rent his clothes. After God sent Moses to Egypt and liberated them slavery, God appeared to Moses on their journey to the Promised Land of Canaan on Mount Sinai, and gave him laws which he told Moses to pass on the children of Israel.
"The Hebrew word for the first five books of the Hebrew Bible, Torah (which means "law" and was translated into Greek as "nomos" or "Law") refers to the same five books termed in English "Pentateuch" (from Latinised Greek "five books," implying the five books of Moses). After Moses' death the book of the law was handed down to Joshua, who upon receipt of the book was told by God that now that Moses His servant is dead, it's now Joshua's responsibility to take the Israelites over the Jordan and into the Promised Land.
God said in Joshua 1 verse 7 and 8:-
"7 Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest. 8 This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success."
Later in the Bible upon Solomon’s death, the powerful and rich kingdom of Israel was split in two. Both the northern and southern kingdoms suffered from godless leadership, but the worst king was Manasseh, who sacrificed his own sons in the fire of Molech and put an idol of the Canaanite fertility goddess in the temple in Jerusalem. During the reign of Manasseh the book of the law was lost. The book of the law contained the following:
(1) Moral Laws
(2) Ceremonial Laws
(3) Civil Laws
Today there are generally four different types of law, which include criminal, civil, common and statuate laws.
This is the kind of law that the police enforce. Murder, assault, robbery and rape are all included within the boundaries of criminal law.
Civil law has many different areas enclosed in it. Examples that come under this law are legal rights, such as a right to an education or to a trade union membership and divorce problems, such as how the furniture is split between the couple and who receives custody of the children. The best way to describe it is that it looks at actions that are not crimes.
Common Law and Precedent
Common law is based on felling about right and wrong, which we all have. It is common law that tells us that people are more important than things. So a crime committed against a person is looked upon far worse that a crime committed against property. Precedent means ‘what has gone before’. So if a judge is trying a murder case, he or she will try to look up similar cases that have gone before, to see how they were dealt with and what sentence was given. It is very important when carrying out common law.
A statuate law is a law that is made by the government. In England all laws are mainly made by parliament. These laws are written down from start to finish, and therefore different to common laws which are not written down. All new laws are statuate laws even though some are based on common laws, which have gone before.
During the reign of Manasseh, these laws were all lost because of the book of the law being lost. Josiah, Manasseh’s grandson, became king of Judah when he was only eight years old. Eight (8) Is the number of new beginnings. The name Josiah is a Hebrew baby name. In Hebrew the meaning of the name Josiah is: Jehovah has healed. Biblical Josiah became king of Judah at eight after his father was assassinated. He ruled 31 years. Unlike his father and grandfather, Josiah tore down the pagan altars, pounded the stone idols into powder, and began repairing the temple.
During the repair, Hilkiah, the high priest, found “the Book of the Law of the Lord given by Moses,” perhaps in a dusty unused corner of the Temple or in an area being repaired. During the previous almost 60 years when the people were worshipping pagan idols, no one had read the Word of God. Hilkiah gave the book, probably Deuteronomy, to Shaphan the scribe, and Shaphan took it to the king. Josiah wanted to “do what was right in the sight of the Lord,” but his knowledge of what God wanted was based on tradition and hearsay. Now he listened to the words of God.
“Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God, the Lord is one!” “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.” “You shall teach [God’s commandments] diligently to your children.” King Josiah, who had torn down the pagan altars, heard Shaphan read, “You shall have no other gods before Me.” He also heard, “If you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, . . , the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you . . . because you obey the voice of the Lord your God.”
Josiah was humbled and tore his clothes, a sign of repentance. For nearly 60 years the Word of God had not been heard in Judah and, while Josiah had been doing the right things, he could now do them for the right reasons—because he knew what God wanted. Josiah brought all the people together and Josiah himself read “in their hearing” the book that had been found. He then committed “to follow the Lord and to keep his commandments.” And “all the people took a stand for the covenant.”
“There was no king like him, who turned to the Lord with all his heart.” Josiah and the nation of Judah were convicted by their failure to live according to God’s commands, they repented, and they committed to follow God’s words. Josiah then ordered Hilkiah and the doorkeepers of the temple to bring out everything that was evil in the sight of the God of the Book he had just read and everyone watched.Josiah and the nation were transformed by the reading of God’s Word.
I Prophesy, with this mouth that I use to pray, that Botswana shall be blessed because the book has been found. Wishing you all a Happy New Year. Till we meet again in this same motivational corner.
Seventy-seven years ago, on the evening of December 2, 1943, the Germans launched a surprise air raid on allied shipping in the Italian port of Bari, which was then the key supply centre for the British 8th army’s advance in Italy.
The attack was spearheaded by 105 Junkers JU88 bombers under the overall command of the infamous Air Marshal Wolfram von Richthofen (who had initially achieved international notoriety during the Spanish Civil War for his aerial bombardment of Guernica). In a little over an hour the German aircraft succeeded in sinking 28 transport and cargo ships, while further inflicting massive damage to the harbour’s facilities, resulting in the port being effectively put out of action for two months.
Over two thousand ground personnel were killed during the raid, with the release of a secret supply of mustard gas aboard one of the destroyed ships contributing to the death toll, as well as subsequent military and civilian casualties. The extent of the later is a controversy due to the fact that the American and British governments subsequently covered up the presence of the gas for decades.
At least five Batswana were killed and seven critically wounded during the raid, with one of the wounded being miraculously rescued floating unconscious out to sea with a head wound. He had been given up for dead when he returned to his unit fourteen days later. The fatalities and casualties all occurred when the enemy hit an ammunition ship adjacent to where 24 Batswana members of the African Pioneer Corps (APC) 1979 Smoke Company where posted.
Thereafter, the dozen surviving members of the unit distinguished themselves for their efficiency in putting up and maintaining smokescreens in their sector, which was credited with saving additional shipping. For his personal heroism in rallying his men following the initial explosions Company Corporal Chitu Bakombi was awarded the British Empire Medal, while his superior officer, Lieutenant N.F. Moor was later given an M.B.E.
Remember: bricks and cement are used to build a house, but mutual love, respect and companionship are used to build a HOME. And amongst His signs is this: He creates for you mates out of your own kind, so that you may find contentment (Sukoon) with them, and He engenders love and tenderness between you; in this behold, there are signs (messages) indeed for people who reflect and think (Quran 30:21).
This verse talks about contentment; this implies companionship, of their being together, sharing together, supporting one another and creating a home of peace. This verse also talks about love between them; this love is both physical and emotional. For love to exist it must be built on the foundation of a mutually supportive relationship guided by respect and tenderness. As the Quran says; ‘they are like garments for you, and you are garments for them (Quran 2:187)’. That means spouses should provide each other with comfort, intimacy and protection just as clothing protects, warms and dignifies the body.
In Islam marriage is considered an ‘ibaadah’, (an act of pleasing Allah) because it is about a commitment made to each other, that is built on mutual love, interdependence, integrity, trust, respect, companionship and harmony towards each other. It is about building of a home on an Islamic foundation in which peace and tranquillity reigns wherein your offspring are raised in an atmosphere conducive to a moral and upright upbringing so that when we all stand before Him (Allah) on that Promised Day, He will be pleased with them all.
Most marriages start out with great hopes and rosy dreams; spouses are truly committed to making their marriages work. However, as the pressures of life mount, many marriages change over time and it is quite common for some of them to run into problems and start to flounder as the reality of living with a spouse that does not meet with one’s pre-conceived ‘expectations’. However, with hard work and dedication, couples can keep their marriages strong and enjoyable. How is it done? What does it take to create a long-lasting, satisfying marriage?
Below are some of the points that have been taken from a marriage guidance article I read recently and adapted for this purposes.
POSITIVITY Spouses should have far more positive than negative interactions. If there is too much negativity — criticizing, demanding, name-calling, holding grudges, etc. — the relationship will suffer. However, if there is never any negativity, it probably means that frustrations and grievances are not getting ‘air time’ and unresolved tension is accumulating inside one or both partners waiting to ‘explode’ one day.
“Let not some men among you laugh at others: it may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): nor let some women laugh at others: it may be that the (latter) are better than the (former): nor defame nor be sarcastic to each other, nor call each other by (offensive) nicknames.” (49:11)
We all have our individual faults though we may not see them nor want to admit to them but we will easily identify them in others. The key is balance between the two extremes and being supportive of one another. To foster positivity in a marriage that help make them stable and happy, being affectionate, truly listening to each other, taking joy in each other’s achievements and being playful are just a few examples of positive interactions. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “The believers who show the most perfect faith are those who have the best character and the best of you are those who are best to their wives”
Another characteristic of happy marriages is empathy; understanding your spouses’ perspective by putting oneself in his or her shoes. By showing that understanding and identifying with your spouse is important for relationship satisfaction. Spouses are more likely to feel good about their marriage and if their partner expresses empathy towards them. Husbands and wives are more content in their relationships when they feel that their partners understand their thoughts and feelings.
Successful married couples grow with each other; it simply isn’t wise to put any person in charge of your happiness. You must be happy with yourself before anyone else can be. You are responsible for your actions, your attitudes and your happiness. Your spouse just enhances those things in your life. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “Treat your women well and be kind to them for they are your partners and committed helpers.”
Successful marriages involve both spouses’ commitment to the relationship. The married couple should learn the art of compromise and this usually takes years. The largest parts of compromise are openness to the other’s point of view and good communication when differences arise.
When two people are truly dedicated to making their marriage work, despite the unavoidable challenges and obstacles that come, they are much more likely to have a relationship that lasts. Husbands and wives who only focus on themselves and their own desires are not as likely to find joy and satisfaction in their relationships.
Another basic need in a relationship is each partner wants to feel valued and respected. When people feel that their spouses truly accept them for who they are, they are usually more secure and confident in their relationships. Often, there is conflict in marriage because partners cannot accept the individual preferences of their spouses and try to demand change from one another. When one person tries to force change from another, he or she is usually met with resistance.
However, change is much more likely to occur when spouses respect differences and accept each other unconditionally. Basic acceptance is vital to a happy marriage. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “It is the generous (in character) who is good to women, and it is the wicked who insults them.” “Overlook (any human faults) with gracious forgiveness.” (Quran 15:85)
COMPASSION, MUTUAL LOVE AND RESPECT
Other important components of successful marriages are love, compassion and respect for each other. The fact is, as time passes and life becomes increasingly complicated, the marriage is often stressed and suffers as a result. A happy and successful marriage is based on equality. When one or the other dominates strongly, intimacy is replaced by fear of displeasing.
It is all too easy for spouses to lose touch with each other and neglect the love and romance that once came so easily. It is vital that husbands and wives continue to cultivate love and respect for each other throughout their lives. If they do, it is highly likely that their relationships will remain happy and satisfying. Move beyond the fantasy and unrealistic expectations and realize that marriage is about making a conscious choice to love and care for your spouse-even when you do not feel like it.
Seldom can one love someone for whom we have no respect. This also means that we have to learn to overlook and forgive the mistakes of one’s partner. In other words write the good about your partner in stone and the bad in dust, so that when the wind comes it blows away the bad and only the good remains.
Paramount of all, marriage must be based on the teachings of the Noble Qur’an and the teachings and guidance of our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). To grow spiritually in your marriage requires that you learn to be less selfish and more loving, even during times of conflict. A marriage needs love, support, tolerance, honesty, respect, humility, realistic expectations and a sense of humour to be successful.
The past week or two has been a mixed grill of briefs in so far as the national employment picture is concerned. BDC just injected a further P64 million in Kromberg & Schubert, the automotive cable manufacturer and exporter, to help keep it afloat in the face of the COVID-19-engendered global economic apocalypse. The financial lifeline, which follows an earlier P36 million way back in 2017, hopefully guarantees the jobs of 2500, maybe for another year or two.
It was also reported that a bulb manufacturing company, which is two years old and is youth-led, is making waves in Selibe Phikwe. Called Bulb Word, it is the only bulb manufacturing operation in Botswana and employs 60 people. The figure is not insignificant in a town that had 5000 jobs offloaded in one fell swoop when BCL closed shop in 2016 under seemingly contrived circumstances, so that as I write, two or three buyers have submitted bids to acquire and exhume it from its stage-managed grave.