Written by: Siphiwe Christopher Mathebula
Article source: JOY! Magazine

‘Your patriotism is not measured by what your country can do for you. It’s all about what you can do for your country; for your own benefit and for the benefit of unborn generations!’ – Israelmore Ayivor

Growing up in the dusty and poverty-stricken environment that was created by the former apartheid government, I was never taught to love my country. Just like many people back in the day, I would relieve myself anywhere without any shame or thought of the damage I was causing to the nature. Now that I am a Pastor, people would be shocked to know that I used to do this, and I would tell them that I don’t do that anymore. It troubles my heart to see that some people, especially men, are still relieving themselves anywhere, even now.

A Devoted Citizen loves their country and remains loyal to the laws thereof. They see to it that the country is well established and a safe place for those who reside in it.

Growing up in the poverty-stricken environment created by apartheid, I was never taught to love my country.

We are entitled to protection in our country
A citizen of South Africa is one, by virtue of their birth or by virtue of becoming a naturalised national. Both have an obligation to the country as much as the government has an obligation towards them. All citizens are subject to the laws of the country they reside in, no matter how low or how high your status is in life; whether you sleep under a bridge at night or under the finest thread of linen. Safety and security is a human right.

When we think of the state of security in our country, have we ever taken a moment to consider building relationships with law enforcers who are working in our communities? Can we stand boldly and say we have made an impact in their lives, we have empowered them to ensure efficient service and accountability to the communities they serve, without threat? How often have you said “thank you” to those who are dedicated in enforcing law and ensuring our safety?
You may be nodding and saying, ‘Yeah, we know all that.’ But we all have blind spots in our daily lives. Just becoming aware of this could make a considerable difference to your family, place of work, neighbourhood, and country.

The CHOICE to stay or not to stay
In light of the changing economic status and security in our country, many South Africans are choosing to emigrate to other countries in pursuit of a better and more secure lifestyle.

On the other hand, there are South Africans who have chosen to stay – believing that we, as a nation, can turn things around and make a positive difference. Such decisions are not only motivated by the love of the country, but also the aim of creating a South Africa that will still stand in generations to come.

A Devoted Citizen identifies a space in the challenging situation of their country and looks at roles they can play a part in, in changing a negative situation or narrative into a positive one. They consider ways of supporting any
efforts that seek to find solutions for issues of national concern.

The book is available on Amazon, Exclusive Books, Bargain Books, and Protea Books. Bulk orders can be made at info@hrm.org.za

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Date published: 20/06/2022
Feature image: Image for illustrative purposes only. Artwork adapted from
Siphiwe Christopher Mathebula – Lead Pastor: Hope Restoration Ministries. Visit hrm.org.za

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