How a drunk­ard helped HIM FIND HIS CALL­ING

Pas­tor Thomas Radebe speaks about the chal­lenges pas­tors face

Move! - - YOUR FAITH - By Bonolo Sekudu

OVER 20 years ago, a drunk­ard af­firmed God’s pur­pose for Pas­tor Thomas Radebe’s life when they co­in­ci­dently met in the streets of Davey­ton in the East Rand. The drunk man said to him that he was not ful­fill­ing God’s pur­pose for his life. At the time, Pas­tor Thomas was a 19-year-old who did not know what his next step in life would be and he did not know that he was des­tined to work for the Lord.


For Pas­tor Thomas, the in­ci­dent with the drunk­ard gave him clar­ity about where his life should be.

Not only did it give him di­rec­tion, but it also re­minded him that in­deed God uses any­one as a ves­sel of His word.

He now leads the Ekhaya Chris­tian Church in Um­lazi, KwaZulu-Na­tal.

For Pas­tor Thomas, find­ing him­self in min­istry was a re­sult of af­fir­ma­tions from church lead­ers and men­tors who saw some­thing in him and were will­ing to help him find his feet.

He ac­knowl­edges the in­flu­ence of peo­ple like Oa­sis of Life Fam­ily Church leader, Apos­tle Isaac Sit­hole, who has been a great men­tor.

“I learnt all I know un­der Oa­sis. The church is still a great sup­port to me,” he says.

The mo­ti­va­tional speaker, life coach, busi­ness­man and au­thor says God's work comes first in his life.

“I am called, so be­ing a pas­tor comes be­fore all the other hats I wear,” he says.


Pas­tor Thomas started his mo­ti­va­tional talks and life coach­ing work in 2011 on Ukhozi FM. He has been fea­tured on shows such as Gospel Time, Gospel Clas­sics and KZN TV.

“Mo­ti­va­tion gives peo­ple hope and that is why it ties in well with my work as a pas­tor. The church also gives peo­ple hope when they go through so­cial ills, while mo­ti­va­tion up­lifts them,” he says.

He says peo­ple don’t need mo­ti­va­tion only but they need prac­ti­cal ways of turn­ing their lives around. His pas­sion for trans­form­ing peo­ple's lives has led him to writ­ing his first hand­book, Great­ness Is Nat­u­ral But...

“Ev­ery­one is born great, some­times peo­ple do not know this as they don’t know how to tap into it.”


Church lead­ers have the tough task of be­ing role mod­els in their com­mu­ni­ties, a re­spon­si­bil­ity Pas­tor Thomas says doesn’t al­ways meet peo­ple's ex­pec­ta­tions.

“Be­ing a leader doesn’t mean that you have it all fig­ured out. As lead­ers we aren’t im­mune to chal­lenges and tests. We go through storms and re­jec­tion too,” he says.

He says there are days when he doesn't feel like get­ting out of bed, but pos­i­tive feed­back from peo­ple keeps him go­ing.

He ad­mits that some peo­ple have walked out on church lead­ers be­cause of their mis­takes. “We are not per­fect hu­man be­ings,” he says.

Pas­tor Thomas Radebe says as a pas­tor, it is ful­fill­ing to know that your work is mak­ing a dif­fer­ence in peo­ple's lives

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