MIKE Smuts, a retired pastor in the Dutch Reformed Church, has been involved with the Klipfontein community for 50 years and shared his personal testimony and journey with Christ with the Christian Men’s Association Breakfast last Saturday at The Lodge Celebration Centre.
Smuts said his testimony was not a dramatic conversion experience. His parents were devout and his father had been draughtsman in Queenstown who then changed his path towards ministry and ended up in Pretoria.
“In my own conversion, the first time I accepted Christ consciously was in 19??[date to come] – I was in Standard 6 (Grade 8). I will never forget the release and joy he gave me,” said Smuts.
Years later when Smuts was in matric he was determined as a young Christian to lead some of his friends to Christ. When at a youth camp, he tried looking for anyone who showed they were receptive to the service and then God spoke to him.
“God told me ‘I cannot use you if you try to serve me using your own power’. I had to go separately from the group and reconnect myself to the Lord. When I stopped trying to do it, Christ took over,” Smuts said.
The cherry on the top came when a friend and neighbour who Smuts described as a “baddie”, had a profound experience.
The friend, Flip, was a problem. His father had passed away at a young age and he had regularly been in trouble with authorities and school. With a shared love for woodwork and mechanics Flip and Smuts had a friendship and would spend time together.
“I never spoke about Christ though. He wasn’t the type of guy who you had those conversations with,” he said.
Then one day Flip stopped working and turned to Smuts and asked if it was true that he had made his sister a Christian.
“He looked at me and said ‘wat dink jy soek ek by jou?’ [What do you think I want from you?]. Then and there Flip knelt down and gave himself to the Lord. Let God use you,” Smuts said.
“I’m a Christian and I love the Lord, with each new truth the Lord expects me to make a new commitment to him,” he said.
“He will lead us on and on and on. In short, move away from severe knowledge to utter dependence. Move away from being clever about God and allow yourself to be pulled into the mystery,” Smuts said.
He spoke about the Holy Spirit, and how Christians need to allow the Holy Spirit to guide them.
He used an example of a Boeing, a heavy object that is bound to the ground, but when it picks up speed it allows for wind to blow over the wings, allowing it to fly.
“The Holy Spirit is like the wind, it comes and goes. It is what overwhelms my sinful nature,” said Smuts.
“The moment I start depending on my own power as a Christian I will fail. The miracle is that God, the Holy Father, takes over and takes my hand and says that’s not the way.”