"There were two children lying on the floor on a mat. One lay on her side, was completely motionless, and was already dead. The other was so sick he had probably less than another day to live. His body was covered in a dirty cloth and his eyes were glazed. I came close to him and stared long and hard into his mournful eyes. I have seen many like him since, and know I will see many more in my lifetime. However, this was a first time for me. I thought to myself, These children are starving to death. I made my pledge with God.... 'God, from this day on, I will help every child in need, every child that needs a home, every child that needs food that crosses my path. I will see to it. I promise you.' " (146)
This was Heather Reynolds' promise. In God's Golden Acre, Heather and Dale le Vack tell her story. Heather was born into apartheid South Africa during the fifties and raised near the Zulus while her parents operated a trading station. She became fluent in Zulu, comfortable with the Zulu people, and familiar with their traditions.
Heather and le Vack show how God shaped her for the mission He had in mind with her unusually tender heart, her handicapped older brother, and her familiarity with the Zulus. He brought her to Himself after a youthful marriage which drove her away from Him. When she married Patrick Reynolds, she found her soul mate in the quiet, retiring man who at times has been the main financial supporter of God's Golden Acre. Even before God's direction for God's Golden Acre, Heather helped the Zulu people by providing homes and training for young girls who had been driven from their villages because they were pregnant and for older women seeking refuge from tribal violence. She also helped deliver care packages to some of the needy. When she saw the little AIDS orphan in a neighboring country, Heather believed that God had directed her to her life's calling to which she has devoted herself since. In spite of apartheid, racism, poverty, heartache, and sometimes death, Heather has cared for hundreds of children and Zulu families stricken by AIDS.
The first section of the book paints portraits of Heather and her work. The second tells of Heather's early life until her calling, and the third shows the struggle to establish God's Golden Acre. le Vack and Reynolds show God's leading throughout and how He can use an a remarkable, strong, yet ordinary, woman to accomplish the "impossible."
God's Golden Acre is a fascinating story, hard to put down, and moving. le Vack interviewed not only Heather, but also family members, friends, volunteers, and board members. The story includes twenty-four pages of color photos. This would be a good book for teens and adults to read for inspiration. -- Debbie W. Wilson, Christian Book Previews.com
"I have been aware of the heroic and compassionate work being done by Heather Reynolds and her dedicated team at God's Golden Acre for a number of years. Heather's role in fighting the AIDS pandemic in our country places her as an historic figure in the story of the new South Africa." -- Nelson Mandela