Originally from Canada, Selena Headley is a missionary with Every Nation Ministries. She serves as a lecturer at Cornerstone Institute in South Africa. As part of her work, she developed and has taught the community development curriculum for the past four years.
She has a passion for building local leaders who focus on alleviating poverty and building community. And she trains community-based organizations and churches in South Africa and other nations.
Life in Ministry
When Selena heard about Apartheid in the late 1980s, she was really drawn into the story. When she graduated, she felt called into the ministry. Still, she didn’t make her first visit to South Africa until 1992, when she served for six months. She’s now been in South Africa for a little over seven years.
Post-Apartheid Challenges in South Africa
- Unemployment, inequality, and poverty are still problems
- The racial divide is still a challenge
- The government still has challenges
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
to grant to those who mourn in Zion—
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.
They shall build up the ancient ruins;
they shall raise up the former devastations;
they shall repair the ruined cities,
the devastations of many generations.
Strangers shall stand and tend your flocks;
foreigners shall be your plowmen and vinedressers;
but you shall be called the priests of the Lord;
they shall speak of you as the ministers of our God;
you shall eat the wealth of the nations,
and in their glory you shall boast.
(Isaiah 61:1-6 ESV)
Following God’s will has been a life-long journey – even as it relates to South Africa. For example, it was years between when she felt God’s call on her life and when she moved to South Africa to minister full time.
She returned to South Africa after 12 years and was much better equipped. But, yet, after she’d set up a training school and had developed the curriculum, she hit a huge roadblock. Unfortunately, the second year she offered it there weren't enough students to make it viable.
But because of that challenge, God redirected her to a different way to find students and teach the material to a wider audience.
Last June, Selena was able to present some materials to New Harvest Ministries, a group that is making great strides taking care of orphans in Sierra Leone. She was able to help them tap into their creativity so that they can tell the stories of what is happening.
In November, she was able to join a group of young leaders through a Changemakers retreat where she connected with young leaders from Freedom Mantle. Their focus is on wrestling some of the big problems such as unemployment, inequality, poverty and the legacy of Apartheid in South Africa.
Significance in the Marketplace
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians [2:10] ESV)
Selena is deeply encouraged when people in North America provide what she needs when she visits. Not everyone understands the challenges of reentry. So, those who provide things like transportation and housing are precious.
Personal Success Habit
- Love for the word of God
Shifts in Society
I’d love to hear from you. If you found anything in this week’s show insightful, encouraging, challenging, or confusing, feel free to leave a comment in the show notes or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. I read all the comments and emails myself.
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