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will one day realize it.
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Craig Lock's"Beloved Country"
South Africa

Welcome to My Beloved South Africa

I have always loved my country with a great passion. It has always been such a
"happy, sad land" to me. So it broke my heart leaving it when I found I could no longer
tolerate living within the "system", as it was then.

(Being married to a New Zealander certainly did not help in this.)

I had spent my entire life living under apartheid. And this divided families:
millions of poor blacks, but a few "whiteys" too!

So in the mid-eighties, during the State Of Emergency, in which peoples rights were
severely curtailed (nice word, that), in a "strategic" withdrawal we moved
to the tranquility of New Zealand.

However with this drastic action we unleashed a period of rootlessness and
great turbulence in our personal lives - something Marie and I could never have foreseen.
Nevertheless, I still wanted to do something positive for my beloved country,
albeit from the other side of the world.

(Even if it was just a drop in the ocean - it might make a difference.)

After years of division under colonization, then under the draconian
laws of apartheid, I felt that the different races in South Africa simply did
not understand each other as "ordinary human beings...and each citizen
of this diverse country, irrespective of race, color, or religious belief,
was worthy of being treated with dignity and respect".

So to try to make a difference on the other side of the world, I started writing my novels,
with a main theme of tolerance and reconciliation between the diverse peoples of that
 beautiful country...but most of all, hope for the future.

In my aims I hope I have made some difference to my "Beloved
Country", however small. My novels
The End Of The Line and
The New Rainbow are the results of those strong feelings.

Now Let's Have Some:
Adventures in God zone!

A Personal Note from Craig Lock...

I came across a PRAYER TO
AMERICA by a lady called Marianne Williamson (Oprah's friend), which I
found to be very beautiful. I have used some of it as a basis , then adapted it
extensively for "my real home" and love, South Africa.

My family and friends there, as well as all the people of that "happy, sad land" are
continually in my thoughts and I pray often for "the beloved country".
One day I'll return there, God willing.

PRAYER FOR SOUTH AFRICA

We join in prayer to celebrate this new nation and surrender its destiny
to you. We give thanks in our hearts to the founding of this vibrant nation
of diverse peoples, a beautiful yet tragic land built upon the rivers of
blood that flowed from our forefathers; yet which still flow today...
a happy sad land.

We give thanks for and bless the souls of those who came before us and
prepared this nation, to nurture and to save it; because so many gave
their lives for it - some selflessly and many needlessly.

We ask that God's holy spirit now fill the hearts of all this great nation's
citizens with a spirit of forgiveness, righteousness, justice, tolerance,
respect for others; but especially in a generous spirit of love, faith and
hope for the future.

In this may we be cleansed of all past feelings of ill will and any other
negative, harmful thoughts. May judgment of others, bigotry, racism 
and intolerance be washed clean from our hearts, 
like the blood of our forefathers.

May we play our parts, all of us, in the healing and the furtherance of
our vibrant and diverse country - so that it will one day fulfill its 
immense potential, a promise yet to be fulfilled. To do the very best
within our abilities in developing it socially, politically, economically
and spiritually... each and every one of us in a 
spirit of peace and cooperation.

Dear Almighty God, you are all-powerful and omnipresent. You hold each
one of us in the palms of your mighty hands. Please touch all your
children with your Almighty Love and Generosity of Spirit. May our
minds be filled daily with the thoughts of You and your infinite 
Generosity of Spirit, Your unconditional Almighty Love and 
Your acceptance of all Your people.

May this nation be forgiven its transgressions against its fellow citizens
of all races and creeds and any and all others. May our lives be turned 
to instruments of resurrection and reconciliation, to reach out and 
bring all our peoples together, that the sins of our fathers
might be reversed through us, His children.

Let us forgive, even if we can never forget. May the rich promises of this
beautiful land be fulfilled...at long last. The greatest resource in any
nation is its citizens; so may the beauty and greatness of this land 
burst forth in the hearts of all it's people, all Children of God.

Out of the mistakes and tragedy of the past, may the dreams of our
forefathers be realized in us; so that we might live in peace, honesty,
integrity and excellence with our neighbors. May this country become
a light at the top of the hill unto all the nations of this world
(but especially in the "dark" neglected continent of Africa)
so that our country will be a beacon of
goodness and peace and freedom and especially hope.
May violence and darkness be cast out of our midst.

May hatred no longer find fertile ground in which to grow here. May all of
us feel God's mercy, grace and love upon us.

Dear God, please please ignite the light, the spirit of truth in our hearts.
May
our newborn nation be given a new light, the sacred fire that will
shine so brightly right across this vast land - from the Atlantic to the
Indian Ocean, from the Limpopo in the north to the Cape of Storms 
at the southern tip of Africa.

May we be forgiven.
May our children be blessed.
May we be renewed.
May each one of us be filled with the spirit of the Almighty.
In our lives may each one of us make manifest the
glory of God that is in every one of us.

Dear God, please bless South Africa.
N'kosi sikele i'afrika
Amen

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