True Red


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About the Author

Bradford Haami (Ngati Awa, Ngati Kahungunu, Kai Tahu, Tuwharetoa) is a trained journalist with a long history in television production. A researcher and lecturer in Maori oral and written history Brad has published many papers in this area and two books Golan Maaka: Maori Doctor and Love Stories: Mate Tau. Brad is currently working at Tauihu Media Ltd where he is involved in the development of feature film scripts. He continues to write, having recently completed a biography on Ngati Haua kaumatua, Ike Samuels.


Kia Ora Tuhoe Words cannot express how grateful I am to you for sowing those wonderful, hopeful seeds from God, when I first met you, over six years ago. As you know, at the time, I was in a very violent relationship with an ex-Mongrel Mob member when you travelled down to Patea, to share your testimony at a church there. A friend had invited me to come along and if it wasn't for the fact that I was curious about how God could turn an ex-Mongrel Mob man (you) into a practicing Christian I would never have walked through those doors. Your testimony was truly amazing and I knew in my heart then that God had to be real to change your life so much. It was that very first night I heard you speak that I gave my life to Jesus. My partner (at that time) was in jail and so following Jesus was going along great at first. He came out 3 months later and, of course, my life turned instantly back to crap. The physical, mental and verbal abuse picked up where it had left off. My life was once again in misery but I had a taste of what life was like with Jesus in it - I now knew there was more to life than what I was experiencing. That short time of my life with Jesus was the best I've ever felt. I ran away from him (like I always did). You and a lovely lady took me in and tried to help my baby and get our lives back on track. I will never forget the love and support you both showed me at that time of need and it was a lasting memory that I will always cherished. You showed me God's love first-hand. My ex's influence and control on my life, coupled with the fear and loyalty I felt towards him, ended up pulling me back into an accustomed life of destruction. I spent the next two years trying to get out of the dark hole I had once again dug for myself but not having a clue on how to do it. What I did know now though, was that there was a God. It saved me Tuhoe! I am now living in Nelson and have been a practicing Christian for four years. God has planted me in the church, under great leadership and my children and I are flourishing in every area of our lives. God helped me free myself from that life of destruction for GOOD! He rose me up out of the ashes and helped me stand fast in HIS name. I do have my trials and tribulations at times, as God continues to clean me up on the inside but nothing can compare to the pain I once endured before having a relationship with Him. I am NEVER going back to where I've come from - not EVER! Life is fantastic now! I have to let you know that the seeds you sowed six long years ago in my life have now germinated and grown. May you and those around you be encouraged, keep on keeping on and fighting the good fight for Jesus. He is using you mightily. God bless you for following your heart and being obedient to our God. If you hadn't of done that - I would not be here today and my children wouldn't have their mum! Now I have a testimony to share, too. The ripple effect of all of this Tuhoe, is that my younger sister now serves the Lord because of what He has done in my life. She couldn't believe how much I had changed, how I was no longer in an abusive relationship and how good a life I was living now. So, Tuhoe my brother...thank you so very very much. My little family and I are very grateful to the godly love you showed us all those years ago..With our God nothing is a coincidence. I love my life with Jesus. I will sign off here Tuhoe but you take care, OK. God bless you heaps! Bye. Kindest regards, ...Sister...

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