JESUS HELP YOU TO BELIEVE

5486c7cc-8b0d-470b-9bf3-3ac690311128Jesus told a man to believe in God as He healed his son because of his unbelief in Mark 9:23-25. Jesus told him, believe, all things are possible to all who believe. So 24 the father said with tears, now Lord I believe, help my unbelief. 25 Jesus saw people running near them rebuked the unclean spirit said, you “Deaf and dumb spirit, I command you, come out of him and enter him no more. Jesus knew that some people even doubted God’s power discredited His miracles to beelzebub. A belief in the power of God by faith heals some people. But despite belief, faith in God in action Jesus taught the disciples some healings need fasting or power of agreement. The father believes in Jesus did not need the man’s faith to heal his son. Healing of his son’s life can change to enhance life. Deliverance from idols, pagan practice reconcile man with God. Believer equipped to deliver seek God’s help in Jesus Name through fasting too.18cdf4db-57ed-41d4-a8da-dd124ca746f1Jesus’ home town Nazareth did not see many miracles due to their unbelief. It’s faith of trusting God that helps a person to receive healing. Other cases requires combinations of healing and the use of medications. Faith and medicine is the issue in some churches people prefer to die than be treated with medications. In Genesis God formed Eve by performing surgery on Adam, took his ribs to create a wife for him. Hezekiah ill about to die, God sent a prophet to tell him prepare to die. He cried to God who changed HIS mind extends his life 15 years. God told him to prepare herbs to drink for three days and go into the Temple to worship God. Issue of whether to limit healing to stop using medications and live by faith in God goes on. God performed surgery on Adam and prescribed foods or herbs to eat. As modern large pharmaceutical companies did not exist doctors mixed own ingredients for the patients. Others took prescribed herbs home to boil and drink for many days before health gets better. Most families had their garden of herbs for treatments of ailments. Others foods are medicines organic and rich in minerals and nutrients. Some choose to combine treatment with medication but issues of side effects are treated too.xHealing is instant or a complex process to consider not definite if require longer treatments. Can affect people who reject medical treatment of doctors or hospital costs bankrupting the family. Many lose jobs if unable to work due to illness. The woman with the issue of blood received medical treatment is not cured touched Jesus garments to be healed. So families sacrifice everything to provide the most affordable treatments. Loved one may not survive life worse financially. Jesus healed a young boy whose father asked for healing but disciples could not heal the boy. Trust and confidence in healing power of God in Christ Jesus or prayer is not enough. In some cases Jesus asked  mocking doubters to leave the room for privacy to heal a person. To prevent the mixed messages or a misunderstanding best check believes to receive God. And reject negative words affecting patient’s unbelief for faith. The healing process works through love, hope or will to live, looking forward to a healthier lifestyle. 24563 Healing is process so God’s believer can trust God to get well. Giving up hope by negative thoughts of suffering depresses person to gives up on themselves to lose the will to live. Edzard Ernst is Emeritus Professor at University of Exeter said a “reason why most put ‘negative energy’ in inverted commas is simple its a pure figment of the imagination of fantasists.  Some VIPs take this nonsense seriously the result is desperate patients believe them and choose the nonsense over the best that real medicine has to offer. And can hasten deaths. Their condition may not be worse as joyful hopeful person’s cases. A positive person endures better than ones who focus only on a negative inconvenience of illnesses. So rapidly go downhill despite the excellent teams of  experts doing their best to help them. Its important to remember Jesus said some are healed by fasting and prayers. Jesus told disciples they could not heal a boy encountered to pray for needed fasting.downloadfile-129 The root of some problems needs more than prayer it requires fasting. Beginner doing a first fast do half day with water to  prepare body to adjust. Eat well the day before to give strength to your body to endure better. Give thanks to God for your life, family blessing and worship God in Jesus Name. Repent of your sins in Jesus Name through blood of Jesus to ask God’s grace and mercy. Forgive the people who mock, hurt, offend you and focus on God. Write a prayer request list dated and space for testimony date. Best deal with one request unless an urgent emergency need arises. Read the fasting text in Bible that refers to your need. Do not set any fixed time for God’s answer. Trust God’s timing, wisdom and solution even if it’s not what you asked for. God does not answer prayer not HIS WILL to show off to satisfy your ego and pride. It is God’s desire to answer prayer but not a supermarket list to supply your wants. ed1ec0f1-8fcb-4412-922f-67d62f27c083God meets your needs not your wants to prove he is a great provider. Be realistic don’t assume because you love God HE will do as you demand. Sometimes after fasting you may not get instant answers because fasting is not blackmail to force God to fast track your request. God is so Sovereign and loves you first, love Him more than material things.  Do not think accumulating material things equals the higher status before God. Look at Jesus who wins souls as priority than boast in wealth. The blessings of God makes rich and adds no sorrow if acquired rightly. If half day fast worked well then check with your doctor to try a full day fast if approved and your health is alright. Do same things you did during half day fast and drink water. Do the three days fast if you feel well and approved by doctor. Jesus fasted 40 days prepare your body by short day fasts before 21 or 30 days fast if your doctor agrees. Fasting fulfills God’s plan, purpose in your life through Jesus Name in humility by thankfulness to God. Having done all stand because knows even if answer was not granted. 61k09qfysRLPraise, Thank, Glorify God for eternal life reunion in the resurrection. God is for all nations all people Galatians 3:28, says “In Christ there is no Jew or Gentile slave or free, male or female, (black or white all are one in Christ Jesus.” WORD of God from Abraham to Jews first and to ALL NATIONS as countless as stars of heaven and sand of the sea. Christ loves ALL NATIONS grafted in God’s kingdom.
Jesus whipped money changers he told, God’s Temple is HOUSE OF PRAYER FOR ALL NATIONS not only Jews. God told Peter in vision kill and eat animals from four corners of world in Acts 10:9-11:18 Peter said, 14 “Lord “I don’t eat anything impure because Kosher food he thought is for only Jews as children of God. God told Peter to go to baptise Gentiles. Peter was shocked the Gentiles received Holy Spirit he felt was exclusively for Jews. It is lesson God taught Peter and all not to discriminate against Gentile believers.
Jewish proselyte male converts in ALL NATIONS under the sun went to Israel at passover three times a year. Its why Ethiopian Eunuch or Simon of Cyerene from Africa from ALL NATIONS as black convert Jews. Jesus told disciples to start from Jerusalem to Judaea to uttermost parts of the world to make disciples of ALL NATIONS. This is how Christianity spread from the Jews to non Jews. NATIONALITIES_700x442ALL WHO ACCEPT JESUS CHRIST ARE CHILDREN OF GOD, JOINT HEIRS WITH JESUS, ROYAL PRIESTS WILL RULE ALL NATIONS. WORSHIP GOD, UNDER JESUS KING OF Kings. In heaven near throne of God is countless multitudes of people from ALL NATIONS, TRIBES LANGUAGES holding palm branches saved in GREAT TRIBULATION. The New Jerusalem from heaven will come down into Israel with all these countless multitudes from ALL NATIONS in the New Heaven and New Earth with God to dwell among all men forever on the earth. Be not ashamed of gospel its power of God to save the Jews FIRST then to Gentiles in Romans 1:16. The first apostles and disciples were all Jews. In Acts 1:8 they all received power when the Holy Spirit came upon them to preach in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and go into ALL NATIONS in the world.”

Ladysmith Black Mambazo

Joseph Shabalala with members of Ladysmith Black Mambazo in 1998
Joseph Shabalala with members of Ladysmith Black Mambazo in 1998

Joseph Shabalala, who helped introduce the sound of traditional Zulu music to the world died aged 78. The musician was best known as the founder and director of choral group Ladysmith Black Mambazo, won five Grammy awards and featured heavily on Paul Simon’s Graceland album. They reached number 15 in UK charts with a cover of Swing Low Sweet Chariot, for  1995 Rugby World Cup. Shabalala died in hospital in Pretoria, South Africa, the band’s manager said. “Yes it’s true. Mr Shabalala passed on this morning,” Xolani Majozi told the South Africa Times. “The group is on tour in the US, but have been informed are devastated because the group is family.” The South African Government paid tribute to the musician in a tweet, saying : “We would like to extend our condolences on the passing of Joseph Shabalala who was the founder of the group Ladysmith Black Mambazo. It added in Xhosa, “Ulale ngoxolo Tata ugqatso lwakho ulufezile.” (Rest in peace, father, your race is complete.)Ladysmith Black Mambazo remember singing and dancing with Nelson Mandela.Ladysmith Black Mambazo singing and dancing with Nelson Mandela. Born in 1941, Shabalala was the eldest of eight children living on a farm in Tugela, near the town of Ladysmith in South Africa. “When I a young boy I dreamt of becoming an educated person; maybe a teacher, doctor or something like that,” he told South Africa’s The Citizen in 2014 . However, he was forced to leave school at the age of 12 when his father died, working on the family farm and, later, in a local factory. In his spare time, he would sing with friends in a local group called the Blacks. “The young boys when they get together, they started to sing the songs, until the mamas and the neighbours said, ‘Hey, do it again,'” he told the BBC . “It was just like that. They were calling, ‘Do it again, do it again’.”Ladysmith Black Mambazo dominated South African Music in the 1970s and 1980sLadysmith Black Mambazo dominated South African Music in 1970s and 1980s. He became leader and main composer for the choir, fusing indigenous Zulu songs and dances with South African isicathamiya, an a capella tradition that was frequently accompanied by a soft, shuffling style of dance. They were re-christened Ladysmith Black Mambazo, a name that was significant on several levels: Ladysmith represented their hometown, Black referenced the black oxen that were the strongest on the farm, and Mambazo, from the Zulu word for axe, symbolized the group’s ability to cut down the competition. A radio performance in 1970 led to a recording contract, and in 1973 they released Africa’s first gold-selling album, Amabutho. They achieved global recognition after being recruited to sing on Paul Simon’s multi-million-selling Graceland album, most notably on Homeless, a song Shabalala co-wrote with Simon, based on the melody for a traditional Zulu wedding song.

The band joined Simon on a subsequent world tour. In return, he produced their next three albums in 1987’s Shaka Zulu winning a Grammy for best traditional folk recording. Shabalala retired from active performance in 2014 shortly after performing at a memorial concert for Nelson Mandela. He continued to teach traditional choral music, while four of his sons and one grandson continued his legacy within Ladysmith Black Mambazo. The musician was with his wife Thokozile Shabalala, in his final moments, said Xolani Majozi. As news of his death spread, tributes poured in from around the world. “My friend, a giant humble man, Joseph Shabalala, passed away this morning,” wrote South African singer Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse on Twitter . “My sincere condolences to his family and friends.” “I am deeply saddened,” wrote Herman Mashaba, former mayor of Johannesburg . “You will be remembered as a giant of South African music and a pioneer of the industry.”

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OUR EYES ON YOU JEHOVAH

tumblr_ptfy1xYOS61tjj2sjo1_500In 2 Chronicles 20:2-30 great multitudes came against Israel beyond the sea and Syria in Hazazon Tamarn En Gedi. 3 So Jehoshaphat scared seeks the LORD and proclaimed a fast in Judah. 4 Judah got  together to seek the LORD so all cities of Judah came. 5. Jehoshaphat, Judah and Jerusalem in house of the LORD said, 6 “O LORD God of our fathers You are God of heaven and ruler over all kingdoms and nations. In Your hand is POWER and MIGHT no one can withstand You. 7 You God drove out inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel given to descendants of Abraham Your friend 8 to dwell built Temple in Your name. You said, If disaster comes sword, judgment, pestilence famine, affliction cry You will hear and save. 10 Ammon, Moab, Mount Seir You did not let Israel invade from land of Egypt did not destroy them 11 Reward us by attacking us out of Your possessions given to inherit. 12 O God, will You not judge them? We have no power against a great multitude against us or know what to do but our eyes are on You.” 13 Judah, with the little ones, wives, children all before the LORD. The Spirit on Jahaziel son of Zechariah of Benaiah of Jeiel Mattaniah, Levite of Asaph in assembly. 15 He said, Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem and King Jehoshaphat The LORD says, ‘Don’t not be afraid of the great multitude the battle is the LORD’S. 17 Go tomorrow to Ascent of Ziz to find them by brook  in wilderness of Jeruel. 17 You do not need to fight in the battle, stand still and see the salvation of the LORD who is with you, Judah and Jerusalem!’ Don’t fear or be dismayed the LORD is with you.” 18 Jehoshaphat bowed his head and face to the ground, Judah and Jerusalem bowed before the LORD to worship the LORD. 20 Levites, children of Kohathites and Korahites praised the LORD with loud voices. 20 The morning in wilderness of Tekoa, Jehoshaphat said, “Hear me, Oh Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem: Believe in the LORD your God to be established so believe His prophets to prosper.” They appointed singers to the LORD to praise the beauty of HIS holiness, went before army sang, “Praise the Lord, HIS mercy endures forever.” 22 Sang praises to the LORD ambushed Ammon, Moab, Mount Seir defeated, made end of Seir so they destroyed one another. 24 Judah came to wilderness looked at the multitude of dead bodies. 25 Jehoshaphat and people took spoil, abundant valuables, precious jewelry in three days had so much. 26. On fourth day in Valley of Berachah so blessed the LORD in place called Valley of Berachah valley of Blessings valley of Jehoshaphat for Jehovah God’s victory over Moab and Ammon main road from Hebron to Jerusalem. 27 All returned to Judah and Jerusalem with Jehoshaphat in front, with joy the LORD made them rejoice over enemies. 28 In Jerusalem they played stringed instruments harps, trumpets in house of LORD. Fear of God fell on nations who heard the LORD has destroyed Israel’s enemies. 30 God gave Jehoshaphat REST OF GOD. We pray in agreement Father God gives you REST OF GOD in VICTORY in Jesus Name. We praise you LORD, thank you Jesus thank you Holy Spirit for comforting us daily.

JESUS OF NAZARETH ISRAEL

Jesus lived in Nazareth in Israel raised a carpenter in His family business after His family returned from Egypt at age 3. Age 3 to 30 years is early, lost or missing silent years in Bible detail His activities living in Nazareth till 30. In early years Jesus is an active young boy growing to adulthood attends synagogue with His family. Each year His family travelled to Jerusalem Temple for the passover feast so Jesus led a normal life. He had a Bar mitzvah in the Hebrew: בַּר מִצְוָה Jewish coming of age ritual of boys at 13 years or Bat mitzvah for girls at 12 years old  in the Jewish law accountable for His actions so old enough and responsible.

He attended a wedding feast at Cana in John 2:1-12 and Mark 2:1-12-33 gives details of Jesus’ first miracle. wedding at Cana marked the beginning of Christ’s many miracles. He did this first public miracle by turning water to wine for the guests. During wedding wine run out at Cana so Mary His mother asked Jesus to help. Mary told the servants to follow all instructions. Jesus told them fill the jars with water and fetch water to host was surprised best quality wine served last not knowing its first miracle of Jesus.

In Matthew 3:13-17, Luke 3:21-22, Mark 1: 9–13 Jesus is publicly revealed at His baptism by John as God’s voice confirms Jesus is the true Messiah. Jesus travelled from Nazareth at 30 years is baptised by John the Baptist before ministry began. Jesus moved to Capernaum and lived in Peter’s house began his ministry age 30 to 33 years. He attended synagogue with His disciples in Capernaum so did many miracles there. His family and disciples travelled to Temple in Jerusalem for the passover. Jesus followed normal Jewish  customs enjoys fishing in sea of Galilee.

Jesus was with his disciples and healed Peter’s mother in sick with fever. So she got better and prepared a meal for the men. Jesus continued to live with Peter in Capernaum and so travelled through the land of Israel and the nearby places to preach the Gospel. He healed the sick and cast out devils. He raised the dead and fed thousands of people in Israel or cities visited during His 3 year ministry.

Jesus early boyhood 12 years to 18 years to adulthood was spent in Nazareth and DID NOT GO to India to learn mysticism of pagans religions. Jesus said so many false Christs will rise to deceive, exploit people in His Name. They will even do great miracles and call fire down from heaven to deceive many. Jesus said test all the spirits to discern if they are from God. If they say to you Jesus is here and beware as the elect don’t be deceived in Matthew 24 in Bible. Jesus said endtime signs of many false prophets deceiving many doing miracles in His Name but He will tell them to depart from Him to go into hell because they were unsaved. They used the Name of Jesus to deceive for selfish reasons to show off power to people to take credit for God’s GLORY. Paul said he didn’t want to lead people to Jesus Christ but perish by unbelief. It is possible to do Church church for the wrong reasons, prosperity for material gains. Yet unsaved, rejected by Jesus as goats thrown into hellfire forever. Seek God’s grace, mercy, forgiveness, repent not to gain the whole world to lose your soul by a new age interfaith lies that all roads lead to heaven. Jesus is the ONLY WAY NO ONES GOES TO FATHER GOD EXCEPT THROUGH NAME OF JESUS.

HAVE A BLESSED NEW YEAR

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SO AMAZING BOOKSHELVES

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DEALING WITH LONELINESS

wp-1578499253965.jpgI lifted my windshield wiper to retrieve a frozen pink rose on a cold Valentine’s Day years ago. A freshman in college, I stopped by my car to eat a snack after a morning class. And excitedly wondered who sent me this surprise as my heart pounded in anticipation. Starting up the engine for warmth, I rubbed my palms together and opened the attached card. The rose was from my mother and her words in the card is kind, encouraging, so why did I still feel empty inside? The truth is, I wished the rose was from a secret admirer, a young man, not my mother. My last date spaced far after a previous one I longed for romance to fill me up. My loneliness combined into a frustrating mixture like a cup with no bottom. No matter what I put inside the cup, I didn’t feel full. Roses, chocolates, books, TV shows, fantasies relationships couldn’t fill it. Loneliness seemed to be the only thing filling a bottomless space, and I am weary of its constant haunting presence. My parents divorced when I was 4 years old, the day my daddy left was a day loneliness took up permanent residence in my heart and mind; though I wished it will go away I had no power to push it out the door loneliness lingers on every time I crave love and attention from people’s love its in short supply.wp-1578512659626.jpgIn high school, I developed resentment over flowers and gifts I saw lined up in the cafeteria every February 14. None of them were for me. I believed the devil’s whispered lie, None of them will ever be for you. You’ll always be lonely. About 15 years after that frozen-rose morning, I sat in a counselor’s office. Listening to my stories of constant loneliness, he said, “Relationships are very important to you, aren’t they?” It was his simple, judgment-free question that became a pivotal point in my spiritual journey. A few days after counseling session, God nudged me with a new idea: Perhaps its relationships too important to me yet I was a wife, mother of three and a friend to many, I still felt lonely. God showed me truth to learn from HIS Word: “It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in people” says Psalm 118:8. For far too long, I looked to people to fill me up. My husband, children, best friend, small group companions couldn’t remove my loneliness. They were never designed to completely fill my needs and I realized only God can be my refuge and my safe place and my salvation in lone times.wp-1577904684292.jpgThough people are wonderful, they are not infinite so are not always available when we need them, and none of them provide perfect understanding. God is infinite Revelation 1:8, everpresent says Deuteronomy 31:6 and all-knowing says 1 Chronicles 28:9. As we study His ways, we learn God is ready, able and willing to fill us with HIS LOVE. We learn this best by hiding in HIS place of refuge so the more time I spent in God’s presence, the less I depended on relationships to meet all my needs. My time with loved ones became bonuses on top of loving intimacy I enjoyed with Jesus. No longer required evident proof of a human love on Valentine’s Day or any other day. God is our refuge in lonely times so is more than enough proof He LOVES us. Some inherit loneliness from their mothers. Angel KissiAngel Kissi says she has struggled with loneliness since she was a child she has inherited loneliness from her mother. A parent in the same way affects emotions inherited like hair and eye colour. Two women explain loneliness played a part in their lives and relates to their parents as children. “Loneliness is constant. No matter where I it just does not go away. It’s like you feel it in your bones a deep feeling of wanting to fit in and wanting to be around people you know and love, but you can’t. “So thinks inherited it. It’s been passed says Angel Kissi from her mum Hayley who struggles with anxiety depression and loneliness. Her mum’s spark by severe post-natal depression in Angel started when she was a child. “My family stood out in Peterborough. They all knew who we were because we look different. I’m tall and mixed race and I stood out,” says the 20-year-old. “When I went to university, things were good but still felt didn’t fit in. I thought moving to London would change it but it didn’t. “I felt I was quiet and awkward, struggled to connect with people or make friends straight away. Some go out for drinks after class but never invited. I felt like I did something wrong. I stopped going to lectures, got up, ready to go but back to bed. Avoids going to shared areas of my flat, shut myself away isolated. I went into the loneliness and let it take over.”Angel and HayleyHayley struggle with anxiety depression and loneliness after Angel was born. So unable to cope, Angel left the university before first year was over. She felt then a strong desire to go home and be close to her mum rented a room close-by. “It’s good we don’t live together because we bring each other up, down all the time. She helped me with some aspects of my mental health but at times I didn’t want to speak to her because I didn’t want to make her worse. “If she was different, I will be different. I don’t blame her at all, she didn’t choose to be like this, it’s not her fault. It’s something I have got from her. Personality traits or attitudes I have learnt from her without meaning to.”Angel Kissi struggled with the loneliness from a young age According to Age UK, loneliness is defined as feeling a lack of affection, closeness or social interaction with others.The charity Mind says it is not a mental health issue but research says its associated with increased risk of depression, anxiety, low self-esteem and stress triggered by major life events of bereavement, relationship break-ups or retirement, changing jobs and moving. Dr Rebecca Nowland, who researched the subject of loneliness said it can be passed down in families. “I don’t think we will find a gene for loneliness but it’s response to an experience of loneliness that may be genetic,” she said. “There is a number of studies that loneliness is hereditary so runs in families and there might be associations between parent’s loneliness and a child’s loneliness. The parent who has been lonely for a time may transmit some the negative feelings happening share loneliness experience.”Kirsty and sonKirsty McGrath fears passing feelings of loneliness to her children too. So Kirsty McGrath said her loneliness problem is after her son was born five years ago. She tried going to the mother and baby groups to make new friends, struggled to organise play dates so found herself increasingly isolated. Her husband does support her in the evening but she finds daytimes difficult because she is alone with no-one to talk to. The 33-year-old teacher, lives in Eltham, south London says she is worried of not being able to socialise her children will have an effect on them. She might pass own feelings of loneliness of “grey cloud.“I am paranoid of passing it on to the kids, I wouldn’t be surprised if I did. I am aware so I want them to feel comfortable around others not to feel like they don’t fit in. “My son came home from school and said to me he didn’t have friends so hasn’t played with anyone. I’m worried he is like this because of me didn’t put him in enough social situations to know how to mix in with others.” Loneliness is the common experience among new parents finding groups with shared interests to focus on new parenting skill way to cope says Dr Nowland. Dr Faruq Fazal a GP worked in mental health services on loneliness sats people lack a support network and believes teaching coping skills in school could help. “Nobody really teaches you how to cope through life’s challenges if suffering from loneliness. Its not about physically having people around you, it is when you feel you’re not able to talk to people without an emotional support. People need a support network so their coping strategy is better.” Do not isolate yourself from family or friends unless it is absolutely necessary to prevent virus.Child and parent holding handsExperts say parents may transmit their feelings to their children. Mind suggests a number of ways to manage loneliness, includes peer support talking therapies. Dr Nowland says seeking professional advice can help those stuck in a cycle of behaviour brought about by loneliness. “Loneliness leaves you with emotional feeling quite painful and distressing. If someone is lonely and they felt it for a long time but realising it’s not ok helps overcome developed negative thought patterns. “You need help with cognitive behaviour therapy to help you think and reframe things.” Angel’s counselling helped with anxiety but not helped with her feelings of loneliness. She returned to university but decided to focus on her mental health, work, and learning to drive. “Loneliness is different from anxiety and it’s different from not being able to make friends,” she says. “Anxiety isolates but loneliness felt at university separate from people in your own little world. I’m in a relationship and close to my family but loneliness is still there. To overcome loneliness of Covid-19 in UK children drew rainbow picture put at a window to support each other. Its a fun idea but God is surrounded by rainbows so its appropriate to remind HIM of HIS BIBLE PROMISES to save HIS creation.Rourke and Quinn are seen with their rainbow in CoventryRourke and Quinn are seen with their rainbow in Coventry. Children in UK are placing rainbows in windows of their homed to help keep others entertained during the coronavirus outbreak. These youngsters have been asked to colour in templates of rainbows or to draw their own and display them by their schools. The rainbows are then used as a tool to entertain children as they go on their daily walks with their parents. So this movement dubbed “The Rainbow Trail” helps share common ground interest to deal with corona virus staying indoors.Cllr Adam Clarke, deputy city mayor for Leicester, has displayed two rainbows in his window.Cllr Adam Clarke, deputy city mayor for Leicester, has displayed two rainbows in his window. And Donna Corcoran, 40, from Coventry, praised this movement and said it was a real highlight for her sons, seven-year-old Rourke, six-year-old Quinn and two-year-old daughter, Pearl. So public is warned to respect the personal space to limit spreading virus. Most parts of the world is on lockdown to try to contain the virus. Things to get worse but improves a lot, don’t know if it’s going to go.” Mayor inundated with many lonely citizens appoints specialist councillor. ‘Bureaucracy dehumanises so becoming living robots,’ says a mayor of a small Italian town before the virus.Antonella Argenti, mayor of Villa del Conte in the Veneto region.The mayor of a small town in northern Italy appointed a loneliness councillor being overwhelmed by citizens calling to discuss their problems. So Antonella Argenti elected mayor of Villa del Conte, town of 5,400 people in Veneto region, in May last year noted some inhabitants struggling to cope “You wouldn’t believe it,” she told La Stampa. “In the first few months of my mandate, so many people came to see me. All, young, old, wo/men, complained about problems of the same type of loneliness, the lack of a support network. “Alone with phone take care of bills talk to the automated switchboard refers you to yet other recorded voices. Relationships are missing. Bureaucracy dehumanise all becoming living robots. The Pescueza village in Spain with 130 people with two thirds over 65 years old is adapted to care and provide for their needs. Rails attached to walls to hold on to while walking out and about, slipfree floor to ensure the don’t slip and fall. Its said they are given phones to press red button for emergency needs urgently attended to. They are fed, their clothes are washed for them and transport sent to those who find walking challenging. They meet at daycentre to socialise and a gym tailored to their needs to exercise daily but isolated during corona virus. 20200215_113722

A Facebook group had been set up for the people who want to help others and offer their services to neighbours who might be confined to their homes as a result of the outbreak of Covid-19. They volunteer to fetch their groceries, walk their dogs and pick up prescriptions or have a chat over the phone or Skype if they are feeling lonely or frightened. A young people’s chatroom also discusses people’s feelings and fears. And how to help prevent virus spreading by staying indoors at home. Not to meet in groups, or gather in large groups helps to deal with the virus to protect themselves and others. People are encouraged to try to be active indoors by being busy doing a favourite hobby or sing, dance, exercise write poems, be creative, draw, dribble use crayons, pens, paint with brushes to keep the mind occupied. Ask for help if in need, don’t be shy to suffer in silence people alone. Its said no one cares what you know but KNOW IF YOU CARE in a such a time as this. Actions speak louder than words so it is the time to be there for each other emotionally or physically in extreme cases for intervention by the experts. And for believers in God faith is shared to uplift with word of God in the Name of Jesus with texts, hymns, songs, music, prayer from Bible texts or verses.

Lord, thank You for never abandoning me in my lonely times. I confess I have tried too hard to fill up my lonely spaces with relationships or things that never fill me up. Remind me when I hide away in a safe place with You I will experience Your perfect peace. Meet me in loneliness with Your loving presence. In Jesus Name Amen. Thank you God as your words say I am not alone for Father God is always with me. Jesus you said I am with you in Spirit so will never leave or forsake me to the end of the age. Thank you God. Thank you Jesus. Thank you my comforter Holy Spirit. Thank you for your love and care for me, you supply all my needs in Jesus Name and through people helping bless them all and protect their families too. 

TRUTH FOR TODAY FROM THE BIBLE:

Psalm 118:8-9 Its better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in people so put your CONFIDENCE IN GOD.

Jeremiah 17:5-8, Thus says the LORD God cursed is a man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength so he heart departs from the LORD God.

Psalm 59:17, “O God my Strength, to you I sing praises, O God, my refuge, shows me unfailing love”

Psalm 142:5, “I pray to you, O LORD. I say, ‘You are my place of refuge. You are all I really want in life above all things”

RELATED RESOURCES:
If you need help to overcome lies satan whispers to you? Grab a copy of Sarah Geringer’s book, Transforming Your Thought Life: Christian Meditation in Focus.

CONNECT:
Sarah writes about loneliness, healing, and finding peace in God’s Word at sarahgeringer.com.

REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Which days cause loneliness to haunt you most? How can you turn to God as your refuge in those lonely times? Share your ideas in our comments section.

Reblogged with images

© 2020 by Sarah Geringer.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
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DR. EPHRAIM KWAKU AMU

wp-1577717343772.jpgDr Ephraim Kwaku Amu was a famous Ghanaian composer, musictechnologist and teacher. He was born, 13 September 1899 at Peki-Avetile or Abenase in Peki in the Volta Region a male child born on Wednesday, Kwaku. His father Stephen Amuyaa Papa Stenafo was woodcarver, mother Sarah Akoram Ama. Ephraim was baptised by Rev. Rudolf Mallet, 22 October 1899. Amu in May 1906 aged 12 at the Peki-Blengo E.P. Boarding Middle School shows his interest in music and agriculture. Enjoyed music played in church by Mr Karl Theodore Ntem who played organ. Amu’s teacher of music on organ in return for work on Mr Ntem’s farm on Saturdays taught him  music he loved and did agriculture. In 1915/16 year, Amu passed the standard 7 School Leaving Certificate and Abetifi teachers Seminary Exams. With others walk 150 miles from Peki to Abetifi with boxes on head to start teacher training education. They rest at Koforidua, and NkawkawAsubone and Obomen. In college joined 25 others, Amu saw some students classmates had steel bicycles built his own bicycle from wood carved from a wooden slab in the bush near college.wp-1577730979485.jpgThe students discovered his handiwork named it Amu. It is on record the son of Swiss principal, Stern, enjoyed rides on Amu wooden cycle. Amu’s ingenuity led to carved wooden balls for their school games, which replaced imported balls used at the seminary. Amu completed his four-year teacher-catechist training in 1919. Newly graduating as a teacher-catechist, was one of the two preachers selected in the pulpit on behalf of fellow mates to preach to express appreciation to the tutors and townsfolk. The sermon was an assessment of the quality of the theological training offered to students. Amu chose sermon text from Matthew 25:40 for occasion themed, “the LORD will thank you for all the good you do for HIS little ones.” Amu used Twi and Ewe in his short sermon. Amu is known for his use atenteben, Ghanaian bamboo flute he promoted and popularized the instrument throughout the country, and composed music for it. Amu composed “Yen Ara Asase Ni” -This is our own land a nationally acclaimed patriotic song is performed at national functions.wp-1577719597840.jpgIn 1926 Amu transferred on promotion to the Presbyterian Mission Seminary at Akropong on recommendation of the Synod Committee of the Eʋe Presbyteria Hame. At Akropong, in his new ways of doing things, actions, ideas, unorthodox. In charge of gardening request students to use waste to manure college farm the students unpleased it was a taboo for an educated man to waste. Proved example carried waste to college farm ahead of unwilling students. Dr. Ephraim Amu employed no one to sweep his rooms, wash his plates or run errands for him. No manual work too menial or hard for him, believed in using African cultural artefacts and good African technological and social inventions. He preferred title Owura to “mister” prefix to his name. Dr Ephraim Amu selected Twi names for four new college dormitories completed in 1929. On request from Mr Ferguson Principal of Akropong Training college, Amu came out with a solfa and notation of street song “Yaa Amponsa” set to his own chaste words. His students enjoyed the new song, melody and new words. The street ballad Yaa Amponsa, popular with great appeal and appreciation.wp-1577717331895.jpgAmu learnt to speak correct Akuapem Twi from the members of his Akropong Church singing band who specialised in Amu’s type of African music during the period he led and taught the group. In 1927, inspired by the contents of Wasu, a journal published by the West African Students’ Union, Amu decided he would wear African dress with pride. So not to wear warm those unsuitable European clothes in the tropical Africa. He made efforts to make Christian church service meaningful to African worshippers who were ashamed of their African clothing, language, music or their African names. As part of his ingenuity and creativity Amu introduced bamboo odurogyaba, odurogya and atɛtɛnbɛn. In 1931 after Amu preached wearing African attire on Sunday, he was summoned to appear before the church court. Rev. Peter Hall told Amu, “We were taken aback to see you conduct a Sunday service in native cloth hope you will not do this again.” Amu in his polite manner took leave of the church session but decided in his heart to continue to work in the church as a catechist and music teacher than to become minister of the Gospel to accept wearing unsuitable European dress. In June 1942, Amu married Beatrice Yao and presented a wooden box made of the finest wood instead of an imported steel trunk to his bride. Dr Amu married at the age of 43 on 3 September 1942.wp-1577718179380.jpgDr Amu drove a truck almost similar to this with metal frames he drove around. On Saturday, 27 March 1965, University of Ghana conferred honorary degree of Doctor of Music on Ephraim Amu at University of Ghana, Legon. An Ephraim Amu Foundation was founded in 1995 launched in 2004 in his honour. Blessed to know Dr Ephraim Amu and visited his hometown to attend his son and his daughter in law friend whose wedding we attended. We knew Dr Ephraim Amu for five years in visits to his beautiful home. He is one of the great Pan African pioneers who did his part for Africa quietly in humility allowing his music and lifestyle to speak for itself. As the Ghanaians say, “a good quality product sells itself” without any attempt of spin doctor bulldozing inferior item sold. Dr Ephraim Amu did his best in life left his wonderful legacy of promoting African music, drum cultural values important to him. Dr Amu Day is celebrated as global icon ambassador of African costume culture, music, drums, organic agricultural production. He led by example, so extremely hardworking and it is a privilege to personally meet and know Dr Ephraim Amu’s works of music. He is acknowledged on currency of Ghana as a citizen who stood up for his country and traditions. Above all he loved God as a living testimony for all to see in humility to the Glory of God. Too young to fully understand or appreciate his Pan African cultural views, grateful and thankful for his life as Ho Technical college renamed after Dr Ephraim Amu. Dr Amu’s music is underway by Galaxy Music imprint of ECS publishing Group, released three titles introducing non-Ghanaian choirs to his work to stir up interest in the wider corpus. A quarter of Dr Amu’s works is published in five collections out of print some missing.wp-1577717317363.jpgThough some scores missing, autograph manuscripts filled void unpublishable. With his daughter Misonu Amu is being developed into a new edition of Amu’s scores through a process of comparing primary sources published and versions of audio recordings in consultation with Ghanaian members of team intimately familiar with Amu’s music performance practice. This new six-volume of critical performance edition will present works according to voicing. Thirty titles per volume organized as follows: 1-3) three volumes SATB scores, 4) A volume TTBB scores 5) Volume unison/duet/trio work 6) one volume instrumental pieces. Amu held students’ interest teaching simple African tunes and rhythms studied and adapted the popular traditional African dance, song. Amu also studied Western music and traditional African Music. He studied European Music: Bach, Mozart, Hadyn and other Masters. Amu before hid studies at the Royal College of Music London 1937 had a solid foundation in theory and practice of music. He studied harmony, counterpoint, orchestration, piano, composition of musician Herbert Howells and Gordon Jacob. Amu’s music studies in Europe prepared his musical career in Gold Coast, Ghana. wp-1577717343772.jpgDr Ephraim Kwaku from 1940, for fifty years led contemporary Ghanaian Art Music active musical life in Ghana. He established a Government Music School at Achimota and a Faculty member of University of Science and Technology, Kumasi. Established Music Department Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana at Legon as Senior Research Fellow from 1962-1971 then retired. Amu’s career created the National Orchestra of classical music in Ghana. The National Theatre, National Choir honoured Ephraim Amu, on his ninety- fifth birthday. Choir, conducted by Mrs. Dinah Reindorf performed the works by Amu. Amu’s music is classified into three distinct styles: Early period (1920-1937), middle period (1937-1951), third period (1952-1996). Early work is simple diatonic chords. Songs use duple, triple effect patterns: Biakoye (Unity), Israel Hene (King of Israel), Abibirimma (African Sons) Akwaabadwon (Welcome Song Hail Victors). Middle period works polyrhythmic polyphonic textures show fine music. Amu’s polyphonie textures in Ghanaian languages foundation for his works: Adawura Bome (Play for Me). Akyede Pa Mafo (Giver of Good Things). Amu’s works melo-rhythmic idiom of instrument music effective in writing songs vocals: Adawura Bome  (S.A.T.B.) (Play For Me) percussion rhythm gong and drum of sounds as kon kon kon and pete pete pete.’ Hyiawu hunters’ song. Alegbegbe…(God Loves World). Amu’s music preserves and reflects the linguo-musical dialect music to make culture relevant to Ghanaian music composed, collected and studied.wp-1577717343772.jpgDr Ephraim Kwaku 1958 plays bamboo flutes seprewa, atenteben, instruments developed so standardised. Akan drums atumpan and fontom in his works. His Agyinamoa Wou (demise of cat), scored to bamboo flute ensemble of Atenteben of piano. Amu provides the foundation for composers to contribute to growth sustains Ghanaian mix European music. Ethnomusicologists combine the strong academic interest in music styles. Amu’s vision influence composer’s integration of European African music element and relevant African ethnomusicology helps to understand his music distinguished by his career. Eweland music of Amu’s Asafo Ghanaian war set to Fante tunes of worship in church. Highlife popular West African music origin in Ghana use European- diatonic harmonics emphasis raised to the supertonic minor seventh, modulation dominant African rhythm. Percussive rhythm, parallel harmonics in thirds or sixths; melodic line pattern of texts, non-lexical syllables harmonic and rhythmic effects. ASεM YI DI KA Dr. E. Amu Art Music Ghanaian elements mix native with the European culture: Israel Hene (King of Israel) Odumayefo Ibrefo (Tiresome worker) Awurade Otumfo Kese (Our Great LORD) Onipa dawohoso (Be on guard) Yen Wura Jesu Anim Obi Nni Ho (None like Jesus) Wope Onyame Asenoa (To be like God) Akwaabadwon (Welcome victors) Hyiawu (Hunters’ song) Adawura borne (Play for me) Alegbegbe Mawu lɔ Xexeame (God loves world) Abibirimma (Sons of Africa) Tete Wobika  (proclaim) Nenyo De Wo Dede (Perfection) Mo koso So Mforo (Keep climbing) Onyame Ne Sahene (God Captains our host) Biakoye (Unity) Asafo (War music). Bonwere Kentenwene (Bonwere weave) Mawue Naa Me, Mawue Tea Me (God gives, God withholds) Akyede Pa Mafo (Giver of good things) Yen Ara Asase Ni (This is our land) Enne Ye Anigye Da (Its a joyful day) Ennye Yen Nyame (Not to us O LORD) Sam Befa (Collect what you left behind) Asem Yi Di Ka (Prime talk).wp-1577717410363.jpgUnited Nations must set 13th September Dr Amu International Pan African Day to be observed by the United Nations. It is important to designate specific day as occasion to mark events, topics in order to promote awareness and action of his objectives of the Organization. Member States propose observance and General Assembly to establish by resolution his contribution to music. Celebrations by specialized agencies of United Nations UNESCO, UNICEF, FAO this issues within their scope by the General Assembly.

Works by Ephraim Amu:

  • Amu, Ephraim. Twenty-five African Songs in the Twi Language. Music and words by E. Amu. Sheldon Press, 1932.
  • Amu, Ephraim. Amu choral works. Waterville Publishing House, 1993.
  • Amu, Ephraim. How to Study African Rhythm. The Teachers’ Journal (Accra) 6.2 (1933): 1933-34.

Works on Ephraim Amu 

  • Agawu, V. Kofi. The impact of language on musical composition in Ghana: An introduction to the music style of Ephraim Amu. Ethnomusicology (1984): 37-73.
  • Agawu, V. Kofi, and Ephraim Amu. “The making of a composer.” Black Perspective in Music (1987): 51-63.
  • Agyemang, Fred M. Amu the African: a study in vision and courage. Asempa Publishers, Christian Council of Ghana, 1988.
  • Amu, Misonu. Stylistic and Textual Sources of contemporary Ghanaian Art Music composer. A case study: Dr. Ephraim Amu.Unpublished M. Phil, thesis presented to the Institute of African Studies, Univ. of Ghana, Legon (1988).
  • Professor Kwesi Ampene, on Dr Amu, CU West African Music High Life International Studies Centre

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  • Atiemo, Abamfo Ofori Singing with understanding’: the story of gospel music in Ghana.” Studies in world Christianity 12.2 (2006): 142-163.
  • Beeko, Anthony Antwi. The Trail Blazers: Fruits of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, 1828-2003. Afram Publications Ghana Limited, 2004.
  • Dor, George. Uses of indigenous music genres in Ghanaian choral art music: Perspectives from the works of Amu, Blege and Dor. Ethnomusicology (2005): 441-475.
  • Flolu, James. “Music teacher education in Ghana: Training for the churches or schools?.” Sounds of Change–Social and Political Features of Music in Africa. Stockholm: SIDA (2004): 164-179.
  • Nketia, JH Kwabena. The Historical and Stylistic Background of the Music of Ephraim Amu. Ephraim Amu, Amu Choral Works 1 (1963).
  • Nketia, J. H. Modern trends, Ghana music. African Music (1957): 13-17.
  • Oehrle, Elizabeth. Emerging music education trends in Africa. The Int.  journal of music educ.1(1991)23-29
  • Turkson, A. R. “The Bi-musical approach of Ephraim Amu to music education in Ghana.” Eleventh International Research Seminar in Ghana. 1986.
  • promoted choral music in Ghana
  • Laryea, Philip T. Ephraim Amu: Nationalist, Poet and Theologian (1899-1995) (Foreword by Emeritus Professor J. H. K. Nketia), Akropong-Akuapem, Regnum  Africa, 2012
  • Professor Flolu, Emmanuel James (1994) Re-tuning music education in Ghana: a study of cultural influences and musical development, dilemma confronting Ghanaian school music teachers. PhD thesis, University of York.

Amu composed several musical pieces, briefly summed up among the others:

  1. “Fare thee well”
  2. “Mawɔ dɔ na Yesu”
  3. “Nkwagye Dwom”
  4. “Dwonto”
  5. “Yetu Osa”
  6. “Israel Hene”
  7. “Onipa da wo ho so”
  8. “Yaanom Abibirimma”
  9. “Yen Ara Asase Ni”
  10. “Adawura abo me”
  11. “Samansuo”
  12. “Ale-gbegbe”
  13. “Mia denyigba lɔ̃lɔ̃ la”

Dr Amu composed the next song below based on the traditional craft of Kente weaving of Ghanaian national costume. Vibrant colours of fabrics of the textiles is so bright and techniques of weaving sounds so rhythmic he composed next song. Kente is impressive but expensive was originally worn only by kings and queens for centuries. Made popular by leaders now available to all to wear on special occasions. In memory of Dr Amu Ghanaians wear cultural costumes on Fridays to work to celebrate their independence from colonialism. Still under economic yoke Dr Amu will not be amused would compose a new song.

Bonwire Kente Song:
Akyinkyinakyinkyin ama mahu nneɛma

Akyinkyinakyinkyin ama mahu nneɛma,
Akyinkyinakyinkyin ama mate nsɛmma,
Asante Bonwire Kente nwene deɛ,
Manhu bi da o,
Asante Bonwire Kente nwene deɛ,
Manhu bi da o,
Kwame nim adeɛ yɔ
Ne kente nwono na abɔ me gye
Ne nsa; ne nan, n’asadua saa nie:
Kro, kro, krohikro,
Hi, hi, hi, hi,
Krohikro hi krokrokro,
Hi, hi, hi, hi,
Krohikro,
Na ɛyɛ me dɛ o,
Na ɛyɛ me dɛ o,
Na abɔ me gye koraa,
Na ɛyɛ me dɛ o,
Na abɔ me gye koraa.
Roaming about has made me observe things,
Roaming about has made me hear of stories,
As for Asante Bonwire Kente weaving,
I’ve never seen some before
As for Asante Bonwire Kente weaving,
I’ve never seen some before
Kwame knows his craft His expert Kente weaving, amazes me.
His hands; his feet, the loom sound thus:
Kro, kro, krohikro,
Hi, hi, hi, hi,
Krohikro hi

PEOPLE TACKLING POVERTY

Malachi's ProjectMalachi’s tooth fairy cash helps create a £5m homeless centre now opened in east London. He gave £5 donation when 5 years old to the Salvation Army with a note and prayer to “use it to buy a house for homeless” people. Now at ten-years-old Malachi’s donated tooth fairy money to Salvation Army was topped up by the Redbridge Council and Salvation Army to create Malachi’s Place on the freeland donated. The building’s 42 flats helps  homeless people get a home in Ilford in new housing for tenants. This shows no gifts are too small to help tackle poverty or homelessness in the world.

20200321_134948Wolverhampton Wanderers donated thousands of pieces of some protective equipment to health teams in response to the coronavirus epidemic. The club and owners Fosun donated 2,300 items. Medical coveralls and 1,000 N95 masks were among items distributed to Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust and public health teams. Executive chairman Jeff Shi said the club would do “all it can” to support doctors or community workers. Landlords of pub forced to close set up a service delivering fruit and vegetables to NHS and healthcare workers. Bradley Richards and Trina Lake set up a stall by their pub in Costessey, near Norwich, on Wednesday after deciding to sell the groceries. Ms Lake said they then struck on the idea of delivering food to health workers after spotting a nurse’s plea. A  fair trade coffee roaster pays fair prices to poor lower income farmers featured in Equator set up from the home garage. Grew to unique excellent tasting coffee talked about where their coffee comes from offers kind of level of service big guys don’t. Customers responded to that so simply trying to be the local versions of big company this unique selling point helps or would be unable to compete.Bags of Equator coffeeFans of coffee include top US chefs and  Equator is unusual in coffee shop sector all staff have access to health insurance. “It’s expensive but health insurance is a right of all Americans,” says Helen. “Any CEO who has a private plane and people working for them uninsured is running their business wrong turned their focus to opening retail cafe to close a revenue gap created by losing La Boulange,” says Helen. In first year of business we didn’t show sales growth but added a million dollars new business that year.A young Brooke McDonnell roasting beans in the couple's garageThe first roasted coffee beans in garage but increased so Equator grown to 155 employees across eight retail stores in the San Francisco Bay Area, with three new branches opening. This shows if a door closes another opens by hardwork if willing to start all over using the skills acquired. Some retrain to improve new abilities yo adapt to current changes.Paths to SuccessThis story from a new mini-series called Paths to Success of Coffee expert Willem Boot, founder of Boot Coffee, a company trains people to work in the industry. He says Equator stands against competitors because of the quality of staff. ” People working for them are coffee dedicated, socially minded, kind human beings. It is these qualities that define the essence of the Equator coffee experience.”Dan PriceDan Price boss’ card payment company in Seattle introduced $70,000 minimum salary for all of his 120 staff – and took a pay cut of $1m. Five years later he’s still on the minimum salary, and says the gamble has paid off. Dan Price was hiking with his friend Valerie in the Cascade mountains looms majestically over Seattle as he had an uncomfortable revelation. As they walked, she told him that her life was in chaos her landlord had put her monthly rent up by $200 and she was struggling to pay her bills. It made Price angry. Valerie, who he had once dated, had served for 11 years in the military, doing two tours in Iraq, and was now working 50 hours a week in two jobs to make ends meet. “She is somebody for whom service, honour and hard work just defines who she is as a person,” he says. Though she was earning around $40,000 a year in Seattle t wasn’t enough to afford a decent home. He was angry that the world had become such an unequal place. And suddenly it struck him that he was part of the problem. At 31, Price was millionaire. His company, Gravity Payments, set up as a teen had about 2,000 customers and an estimated worth of millions of dollars. Though he earned $1.1m a year Valerie brought home to him lots of his staff must be struggling – and he decided to change that. Raised in deeply Christian, rural Idaho, Dan Price is upbeat and positive, generous in his praise of others and impeccably polite has become crusader against inequality in the US. “People are starving or being laid off or being taken advantage of, so that somebody can have a penthouse at the top of a tower in New York with gold chairs. “We’re glorifying greed all the time as a society, in our culture. And, you know, the Forbes list is the worst example – ‘Bill Gates has passed Jeff Bezos as the richest man.’ Who cares!?”Dan PriceBefore 1995 poorest half of population of the United States earned a greater share of national wealth than richest 1%, he points out. That year the tables turned so top 1% earned more than the bottom 50%. And the gap is continuing to widen. In 1965, CEOs in US earned 20 times more than average worker but by 2015 it had risen to 300 times (in the UK, the bosses of FTSE 100 companies now earn 117 times salary of their average worker). Breathing in crisp mountain air as he hiked with Valerie, Price had an idea. He read a study by Nobel prize-winner economist Daniel Kahneman and Angus Deaton, looked at how much money an American needs to be happy. Promised Valerie he would significantly raise minimum salary at Gravity. After crunching the numbers, he arrived at the figure of $70,000. He realised that he would not have to slash his salary, but mortgage his two houses or give up his stocks and savings. He gathered his staff together and gave them the news. He’d expected scenes of celebration, but at first announcement floated in the room  was an anti-climax, Price says. He had to repeat himself before the enormity of what was happening landed. Five years later, Dan laughs about the fact that he missed a key point in the Princeton professors’ research. The amount they people need to be happy was $75,000. A third of workers at company’s salaries doubled Gravity transforms Headcount doubled and value of payment company processes rose $3.8bn a year to $10.2bn. Other metrics Price is more proud of is “before $70,000 minimum wage, having between zero and two babies born per year amongst team,” he says. “Since the announcement and it’s been only about four-and-a-half years we’ve had more than 40 babies.”Dan Price with his motherDan Price with his mother. More than 10% of the company have been able to buy their own home, in one of the US’s most expensive cities for renters. Before the figure was less than 1%. “There was a bit of concern amongst pontificators out there that people would squander any gains that they would have. And we’ve really seen the opposite,” Price says. The amount of money employees are voluntarily putting into their own pension funds has more than doubled and 70% of employees say they’ve paid off debt. Price did get a lot of flak. Along with hundreds of letters of support, and magazine cover labelled him “America’s best boss” many of Gravity’s customers wrote handwritten letters objected its a political statement. At the time, Seattle was debating increase to the minimum wage to $15, making it highest in the US at the time. Small business owners were fighting it, claiming they would go out of business. A right-wing radio pundit, Rush Limbaugh, Price listened to daily in childhood, called him a communist. “I hope this company is a case study in MBA programmes on how socialism does not work because it’s going to fail,” he said. Two senior Gravity employees resigned in protest. They weren’t happy salaries of junior staff jump overnight, argued it will make them lazy, company uncompetitive but it hasn’t happened.Rosita BarlowRosita Barlow, director of sales, Gravity, says since salaries were raised junior colleagues pull more weight. “When money is not at the forefront of your mind when you’re doing your job, it allows you to be more passionate about what motivates you,” she says. Senior staff found their workload reduced. They’re under less pressure and can do things like take all of the holiday leave to which they are entitled. Price tells the story about one staff member who works in Gravity’s call centre. “He was commuting over an hour and a half a day,” he says. “He was worried that during his commute he was going to blow out a tyre and not have enough money to fix that tyre. He was stressing about it every day.” When his salary was raised to $70,000 this man moved closer to the office, now he spends more money on his health, he exercises every day and eats more healthily. “We had another gentleman on a similar team and he literally lost more than 50lb (22kg),” he says. Others report spending more time with their families or helping their parents pay off debt. “We saw, everyday, effects of giving somebody freedom,” Price says. He thinks it is why Gravity is making more money than ever. Raising salaries didn’t change people’s motivation staff were already motivated to work hard it increased what he calls their capability. “You’re not thinking I go to work because I have to make money,” Rosita Barlow agrees. “Now it’s become focused on ‘How do I do good work?'” Barlow has been with Gravity since the early days and knows Price wasn’t always so generous. And he acknowledges himself a time in the wake of 2008 financial crisis when he was obsessed with saving money. The downturn in the US economy decimated Gravity’s customer base and its income fell by 20%. Business logic would have dictated letting go about 12 of the company’s 35 staff, but instead Price focused on cutting costs. After five tense months, the company started turning a profit again, but Price was profoundly spooked, and kept salaries low. At this time Rosita Barlow was experiencing her own financial problems, secretly working at McDonald’s outside work hours. When McDonald’s offered her a promotion, she left a training manual on her desk at Gravity, and someone spotted it. Her bosses called her in for a meeting. “They sat me down and my immediate reaction was to cry,” Barlow says. She thought she is fired. Instead they told her to figure out how much money she’d need to stay on at the company and they raised her salary to $40,000. “I was impressed and proud of her and mad at myself,” Price says. It took him a few more years to grasp the scale of problem among his staff. “Most were too intimidated to come to me and tell me how a lack of pay was hurting them,” he says. Before 2015, he already begun giving employees 20% annual pay rises. But it was his conversation with Valerie that convinced him to go further. Price hopes Gravity’s example leads to far-reaching global changes in US business. He’s deeply disappointed and sad this hasn’t happened. Some did like PharmaLogics in Boston raised the minimum salary to $50,000, Rented.com in Atlanta raised theirs too. He believes by means of online lobbying influenced Amazon’s decisions to raise minimum wage. He hopes a widespread structural change takes place all over the world. It blesses the company to bring increases.  And it’s changed my perspective on things because I believed through the actions that I did and that other people could do, that we could turn the tide on income inequality.” The change has had profound effect on Price’s lifestyle. And  before taking a pay cut, Price was cliché of a young white tech millionaire, lived in beautiful house overlooking Seattle’s Puget Sound and he drank champagne in expensive restaurants. Afterwards, he rented his house out on Airbnb to help stay afloat. A group of employees became sick of watching him turn up at work in a 12-year-old Audi and secretly clubbed together to buy him a new car.Dan Price with Alyssa O'Neal, accepting his TeslaA film posted on YouTube follows one of the group, Alyssa O’Neal’s schemes with her colleagues to surprise him with the car. “I feel like this is the ultimate way to say thank you for all the sacrifices he’s made and any of the negative stuff he’s had to deal with,” she says. Price walks out of the office into the car park, sees the car, starts crying. Five years later Price still on Gravity’s minimum salary, says he’s more fulfilled than he ever was when he was earning millions though it’s not all easy. “There’s tests every day,” he says. “I’m the same age as Mark Zuckerberg and in dark moments I think, ‘I want to be just as rich as Mark Zuckerberg and I want to compete with him to be on the Forbes list. I want to be on cover of Time magazine, making lots of money.’ All these greedy things are tempting.” “It’s not so easy to turn down lavish lifestyle but much happier.”Dr RonxThis doctor sees patients in chicken shops. GP appointments of doctor seeing patients in chicken shops in BBC Three shows The Unshockable Dr. Ronx, a doctor who takes appointments out of surgery in search of people who would n’t normally see a GP. “I don’t go to GP anymore, it took so long to be believed now I feel like they are listening.” And when Bethany was 13 was diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis – a type of inflammatory arthritis. She says it took years for her GP to recognise its serious symptoms. “I think they assumed I was a young teenager so I couldn’t really be having severe joint difficulties.” Despite describing some of her symptoms, like chest pain, as “very scary” Bethany says she feels too embarrassed to go back to see a GP. In the UK, 16 to 30-year-olds are the most likely age group to miss a doctor’s appointment (along with over 90s). That’s according to analysis of GP Patient Survey, suggested 16 to 24-year-olds less positive about experiences at a GP’s, compared with the older patients.  Some of the young people featured in BBC Three’s new show The Unshockable Dr. Ronx say things like embarrassment, a lack of time, using internet instead are some of the reasons that have stopped them from seeking professional medical care in the past. Dr Ronx, an A&E doctor from Hackney in London, wants young people to take their health seriously so she takes GP pop up shop to them. Ratan Tata: An unlikely friendship between a magnate and a millennial.Shantanu Naidu and Ratan TataMr Naidu and Mr Tata watch movies together. Its not everyday octogenarian goes viral on Instagram. It’s so unusual if octogenarian billionaire businessman with a carefully cultivated reputation as a reclusive tycoon. Perhaps its the most unusual particular story of a friendship led to Ratan Tata’s India’s newest social media star. With the help of Shantanu Naidu, the 27-year-old who introduced him to social media platform and taught him about hashtag trends in the world discovered “man crush.” And Mr Naidu hopes the mix of old family pictures, snapshots of dogs and photographs of mogul’s younger days one from five decades of more than half million hits  gave people glimpse of the man behind the tycoon. The man who led the salt-to-software conglomerate Tata Group for 21 years classes of closest friends. The two of them do everything together by getting haircuts to watching films. Their “intergenerational friendship” is quite unusual, but, Mr Naidu says, it is pretty special. “He’s been a hard boss, a core mentor understanding friend,” he told the BBC. This doe-eyed and curly-haired millennial became a business assistant as best friends to India’s internationally recognised business leaders?Shantanu NaiduMr Naidu’s non-profit provide stray dog glow-in-dark collars. Mr Naidu is a fifth generation Tata employee and although family has a strong connection to Tata brand never thought he would end up working closely with man responsible for it. Mutual love of dogs brought the two together while younger man works  for one of Mr Tata’s companies in city of Pune, west India. And Mr Naidu ‘s social initiative Motopaws glow-in-dark collar for stray dog’s work highlighted in the company newsletter prompted Mr Tata to write letter inviting him to Mumbai. “Shantanu and I first met because of our common concern and affection for stray dogs,” Mr Tata in email said BBC. He led team of young college students to adopt dogs and give them affection, food, find homes for them for sense of belonging.” The meeting proved to be their first of Motopaw’s scaling up so became closer. Work emails slowly turned into asking questions about one another,” Mr Naidu said. Soon after friendship took off, Mr Naidu left India for university in US. “I was sad, I felt I just discovered a friend in Mr Tata.” The connection between the two strengthened. Mr Naidu was at Mr Tata’s alma mater Cornell University, and started work on the businessman’s dream project, building a veterinary hospital in Mumbai. The construction for this hospital is set to begin this year. Mr Tata attended his graduation. “I had mentioned it to him in passing and he said yes,” Mr Naidu recalls. “Cut to the actual day and there he was!”Ratan Tata and Shantanu NaiduMr Naidu graduated from Mr Tata’s alma mater, Cornell University. On his return to India, Mr Naidu took up a job as Mr Tata’s business assistant. Things changed in a single minute. I had never imagined my life to pan out this way. Mr Tata told BBC “I enjoy seeing Shantanu’s freshness, concern never seen in a ‘dog eat dog’ world we live in.'” What does a typical day look like? Business assistant to Mr Tata meets, takes copious notes, keeps records for future discussions. Mr Tata briefs him on happenings of day or plan and start attacking them. He’s very focused, non-stop no break,” Mr Naidu explained. The Tata Group patriarch has invested in more than 73 Indian start up ride-hailing service, Ola. Mr Tata uses Instagram profile Mr Naidu set up to connect with the youth and has shared “recipe” for successful start-up pitches. The 82-year-old shares pictures of him in his 20s a popular hashtag Throwback Thursday to set the internet alight.

It isn’t just business so two remain fast friends. He added they both like action comedy films such as The Other Guys and Lone Ranger series of experiences in the Israel Defence Force called Fauda is Mr Tata’s favourite Netflix binge, Mr Naidu said. Last year a radio interview with BBC met Mr Tata and Mr Naidu. It was easy to sense warm bond between the two a great degree of camaraderie and mutual respect. Mr Tata spoke of retirement plans and love for dogs. Mr Naidu continues to work on ths project that brought Mr Tata and him together. Motopaws expanded over the years and now operating in four countries it isn’t just non-profit evolving. “If something bothers me or makes me happy he is the first person I call. The foundation is the constantly blossoming tree. Mr Tata has always been there for me I do the same for him,” Mr Naidu said with a smile.

Micah Lammie sitting in carPhoto exhibition showcases the people tackling the impact of poverty in 21st Century Britain. The focus of the new exhibition showcases those trying to help their struggling neighbours. And four people making a difference in their communities explain how they became involved. ‘I want to be a spark in the plug’ as Micah Lammie learned from everyone in his community. And Battersea and Brixton helped to shape Micah Lammie into the man he is today, so now he is repaying the debt. “Life was difficult as a kid from a one-parent family,” the 30-year-old said. ” defiant in trouble at school. It takes whole village to raise a child I learn from my parents, I learned from everyone in community. “These things I want to continue raising our next generation.” He worked in call centres at a funeral Brixton Soup met Kitchen founder Solomon Smith who gave him his true calling.Micah Lammie close upAs “I’ve known Solomon from back in the day,” Micah said. “I got involved and I’ve never looked back.”He is the centre manager of service offers food and legal advice to rough sleepers or community. “It’s a safe haven for misunderstood people. Everything starts somewhere, there’s been ups and downs but we’re helping people. I want to be a spark in the plug, I won’t change the world but I’ll invest in a person who will.”Micah Lammie at workMicah is now its centre manager ‘I knew hunger.’ After experiencing a financial struggles Mary Brennan’s neighbours in Cross Green, Leeds, faced difficulties. “I knew hunger and poverty,” the 68-year-old said.Mary Brennan

Mary Brennan started a community group in LeedsPresentational white space

“It used to be just families round here, then landlords started bedding seven people in four-bedroom terraced houses. I noticed they were hungry.”Cross GreenImage copyrightJILLIAN EDELSTEIN

Image captionShe settled in Cross Green, where she witnessed the struggles of her neighbours

So she helped set up Community Unity, a neighbourhood group that runs a lunch club at St Hilda’s Church and created a garden on a disused railway bridge where the community can pick their own food.”We don’t have many facilities round here, no shop where you can buy fresh food and [there’s] terrible problems with transport,” she added.

‘If you’re poor, you can’t afford ideas’Steve Arnott

Steve Arnott says hip-hop has always been his love

Poverty can be a barrier to creativity because people can’t afford either the money or time to do it, according to Steve Arnott. The 44-year-old from Hull said hip-hop helped him through a tough childhood and he saw how it could do the same for others. “Hip-hop has always been my love,” he said. “There were local workshops which weren’t getting many kids because families couldn’t afford the fares into town. “I had idea of taking it to them.”Beats BusThe workshops were aimed at helping children in the community. In 2017, his hometown was the UK City of Culture, so he launched the Beats Bus – a mobile recording studio which he takes into the communities to attract youngsters eager to learn more about hip-hop, DJing, break-dancing and graffiti art. “If you’re poor, you can’t afford the time to create ideas,” Steve said. “The Beats Bus is trying to change that, bringing free studio time to talented kids.”Close up showing tattoo of microphone on Steve's lower armSteve has a tattoo of a microphone on his forearm.

‘There’s no shame in being poor through no fault of your own’

The issues blighting the Sholes area of Wigan are being tackled by Barbara Nettleton. She previously spearheaded a residents’ association to reduce anti-social behaviour and improve services, before taking over the running of the Sunshine House community centre. The site opened in 2005, runs art groups and youth projects with a view to helping people find work. It also operates three shops in the area offering necessities including second-hand clothes and prams, toys and baby clothes.Barbara Nettleton covers her faceBarbara Nettleton was a bit shy about being photographed. “When the mines, steelworks and mills closed years ago, it took the apprenticeships away, broke families and industrial areas like ours,” Barbara said. There is no shame in being poor when you work hard all your life and end up poor. God judges a nation by how it treats the poor in the society. Jesus said, in Matthew 25:40-46 whoever cares for the poor by feeding them, gives them water to drink or had provided shelter for the “least of these” receives JESUS. The poor are priceless in God’s sight because HE created them in HIS OWN IMAGE AND LIKENESS. Bible says value of material possessions is not true measure of quality of human life in God’s sight as mankind thinks. Its loving care and fair share of all the resources provided by God as Marslow hierarchy shows God counts towards eternal life.Greg and MarieThis homeless couple moved in with a millionaire in America. The homeless couple moved in with the millionaire after living on California’s streets for 20 years Greg and Marie invited to stay in the home of the millionaire. The local businessman asked if they wanted to share his $4m home. A year later other rich neighbours complain so call police tells us about homelessness crisis in the Western countries. Luke 16 says a rich man enjoyed all great wealth on earth but ended in hell for abuse of the poor Lazarus who went into heaven and is comforted by Abraham. So God judges mankind by how HIS RESOURCES are shared on this earth. Gospel of Matthew 25, 34-46 34 says, KING of Kings “Jesus will say to those on His right, ‘Come in, you who are blessed by my Father God because you the fed poor and you clothe them by your kindness, you did it to me so enter heaven. You didn’t do it to show off to get praise of people but you did it genuinely from kibdness of your heart to help others. George Medal for saving Princess Anne sells for £50k.George MedalThe medal sold at auction for £50,000 is a medal awarded to a boxer who helped save Princess Royal from an attempted armed kidnap has sold at auction for £50,000. Former heavyweight Ronnie Russell, 72, punched Ian Ball in the head tried to abduct princess at gunpoint in London in 1974. Mr Russell said he sold the George Medal as he had been “very unwell for quite some time.” “I want to know that I’ve done enough to pay for my own funeral,” he said. After auction, Mr Russell, who lives in Bristol, said: “For something I thought I would never sell, I never believed it will sell for this amount, I am absolutely blown away.”Ronnie Russell with his medalRonnie Russell was awarded the George Medal for bravery by the Queen. He said he had one request for UK buyer, who asked to remain anonymous which was for them to meet in person to tell the story of what happened.Princess AnnePrincess Anne’s car had been blocked and Ian Ball had fired shots, wounding four people Mr Russell, heading home to his wife and children in Strood, Kent, when he thwarted late-night ambush on 20 March 1974. Ball blocked princess’s car on Mall in central London and fired shots, wounding four people. Mr Russell said Ball was trying to drag Princess Anne from her car while her husband, Captain Mark Phillips, was pulling her back. “She was very, together, telling him: ‘Just go away and don’t be such a silly man’,” he said. “He stood there glaring at me with the gun and I hit him. I hit him as hard as I could and he was flat on the floor face down. “I said to Princess Anne: ‘We’re going to walk away and he’s going to have to go through me to get you’.”Princess Anne's car on The Mall 1974Ian Ball attempted to kidnap Princess Anne who telegrams RONNIE RUSSELLTelegram from Princess AnnePrincess Anne sent Mr Russell telegram when he received medal Ball was later sent to a psychiatric hospital by an Old Bailey judge. Mr Russell was awarded George Medal for bravery by the Queen, who told him: “The medal from Queen, I want to thank you as Anne’s mother.” It was sold with a letter from 10 Downing Street informing Mr Russell of award and telegram from Princess Anne. 

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Produced by Hannah Long-Higgins, Chelsea Bailey and Cody Godwin; edited by Hannah Long-Higgins.

The film is part of the BBC’s Crossing Divides season and a collaboration with the San Francisco Chronicle. Read Otis Taylor Jr’s column on Greg and Marie.

Picture Britain: Our People, Our Poverty was commissioned by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and created by photographer Jillian Edelstein and investigative journalist Stephen Armstrong. It will be at Borough Market, London, from 20 February to 8 March.

More on this story

  • Disabled people ‘pulled into poverty’ as benefits fall short
    6 February 2020
  • Joseph Rowntree Foundation urges ‘new deal’ on poverty
    6 September 2016
  • Poverty costs UK £78bn a year, Joseph Rowntree Foundation says
    1 August 2016 

Photo exhibition showcases people tackling poverty

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  • The Joseph Rowntree Foundation
  • Picture Britain: Our People, Our Poverty

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