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I have been requested by a fellow blogger, in fact someone I feel even to say a friend, to share a post in which I show some photos of my beautiful country South Africa.

Firstly, let me say this: No, there aren’t lions that roam the streets, in fact it is rather a safe place. Yes there are wild animals, but outside the city, hence the word ‘wild’.

There was this one time where a horse crossed the road, but that was a one time thing.

So I guess I could start where I grew up. It was a suburb just outside of Cape Town. I grew up there my whole life basically. From the day I grew up to exactly the day I left I was in one home. Literally the next day my family moved, oh the irony.

I have nothing bad to say about where I grew up. Great community and lovely people, beautiful forests and things to do. There just wasn’t a beach nearby, but I guess I can be content with a 20 minute drive to the beach.

Image result for majik forest durbanville
This is Majik forest. A place that gave so much memories, many walks, bike rides, picnics and one of the places to have quiet time. And it was just a 5 minute walk to get there.

Something I enjoy to this day is hiking. It may have been ingrained in me due to my father and his father going out for a hike on a regular basis. The more daunting it is, the better. I still have a dream to climb Kilimanjaro, the tallest mountain in Africa and the highest free standing mountain in the world, but more daunting than that I want to climb Mount Everest. It sounds like a silly thing to do because of the high danger factor, but that is what fuels my flame. They say if something excites you and scares you at the same time you should probably do it, so that’s what I’m going to do.

Here are some of the photos one can see in the southern tip of Africa. If you ever need a tour-guide/ hiking buddy you know where to look.

Moving into adolescence I came to the lovely town called Jeffrey’s Bay, the place with arguably the best waves. And this is no understatement, you can really look this up.

Image result for jeffreys bay waves

I am very fortunate to have seen what I have seen thus far and to what I will see in the future. I have met some incredible people, some which I can call my friends. Just reminiscing over these experiences makes me realise how we can be so focused on what is wrong in this world, why we are treated unfairly. But then I see these beautiful places I have been to, the wonderful untouched nature in which I have placed my feet on. It is truly unique experiences that I have memories of, pictures I can take a look at every once in a while. Who knows what lies ahead? What is the future? It is rather unclear and that is why we need to make the most of our experiences. Sometimes the hardest thing to say is yes but it may change your life.

On another note, I am going to change my username to something a bit different. What I have noticed is that someone has in actual fact the same blogging name as me, just another domain. So if one has any ideas I would like to hear it. Hope these photos make it a bit easier.

Thanks for reading to this point! May it be a great year that lies ahead!

Can’t beat a sunset at the end of a post can you?

Recipe for success

Sorting out your relationship with God can actually sort out other things.

Starting a career can be challenging. You have reached that stage where you are mature enough to think with substantial intellect as well as live an independent life. For some it may be more difficult than others, so the age varies.

What I have realised as an adolescent is that your time is devoted to many things that was once not previously assigned to you, such as doing your laundry or washing the dishes. With so much less time to relax and socialise one needs to make the most of their day. Sometimes your day is just not long enough.

My focus as my first year as an independent man was on my career. My friends, family, leisure and adventure was important to me but I certainly put work over everything. The first few months was tough: Most nights I would go to bed and wake up after and before the rest
of my housemates. If I wasn’t at work I was programming at home, public holidays were my days where I could optimise my day to just programming. The only rest I would really get is Sunday mornings if I didn’t have to be at church early. So it was tough and I struggled to see growth. It felt as though I was in some sort of stagnation mode.

Fast forward to the start of the year and things were different (I mean obviously, you can’t blame me for making new resolutions and sticking to it for at least a few days ;). I received a word of guidance from my dad stating that at this stage of time in my life I need to be careful where I cast my rod out, to keep it to those who can accept it rather than any person I come across. My rod at this point of time should stay in clear waters, in the church.

My focus shifted.

From being completely focused on work it has now been completely the opposite. It has been focusing on being a disciple of Christ, reading the word and most importantly spending time with Him.

Regardless of the way things are going at work, home or my sorroundings I have been grounded due to the fact that I am with Him. Things look brighter than what they may appear to most.

It has been a few months though that I have been waiting for growth in my life, for acceleration, going to the next level. Now it hasn’t been my current aspirations,

Then when listening from Travis and waiting for it, boom.(I don’t blame you if you have no idea who Travis is, neither do I.)

A job offer.

An opportunity to go the next level at work. A promotion if you may. It has been something I was waiting for so long and now it is here.

Even though my mandate for the current season is not about work,I have received opportunities to grow and to gain responsibility. As soon as I shifted my focus to Him things changed for the better.

Yes there has been a lot of growth over the months and I am certainly ready for promotion I still feel that it has more to do with my posture. Putting God as your ultimate will always make your end result the most blissful outcome you can fathom.

At the end of the day it is not about what you accomplished in your career but rather what difference you made and who came with you.

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How long does it take to be a professional?

Yeah, those are mine 🙂

There was a math teacher in my school that said: ‘Don’t practice a sum until you get it right, practice until you can’t get it wrong.’

A professional is someone who is engaged or qualified in a certain profession. Someone who is confident in what they do. Looking at professional sportsman such as Cristiano Ronaldo shows us how hard work and talent can distinguish himself from other sportsmen, even other athletes on his level.

They are just on another level. But what stands out to me is their confidence. You can’t have the talent without believing in yourself. Sometimes it’s a cocky arrogance while other times it’s because they believe in themselves that they can.

In my last two years of playing hockey I played wing for my team at High school. The first year I scored about 3 or 4 goals. The next year I scored more than 10! It was about 15 games more or less I played each year. So what was the difference? Did I train much harder? Was my diet better?

Well to be honest I might have trained even less and I might have snacked more. The only thing that improved was my experience, but most importantly, my mentality.

I told myself when I get into the area where one may shoot to score a goal(which we called a ‘D’, because the area was shaped like the letter) I would take ownership of the ball and believe I could score. Know that what I have been training for the past week will go into that shot and I won’t let anyone take that ball away from me.

And I believe that is what separates the pro’s from the amateurs. They may have the talent, they might be fitter, faster and stronger, but if you aren’t in the right head space you won’t perform to your utmost.

But how long did it take for me to get there? To a place where I felt at my best. well I guess I could say 12 years because that’s how long it took to reach that stage. A few hundred hours of practice, maybe even thousands. Then hours going into watching games, studying techniques.

So quite a while.

But what if I told you it takes just one moment to become a pro. Almost like a light switch, you just need to turn it on and be a pro.

Last Saturday a couple of my friends went to a waterfall just outside of town. There is a rock in which you can jump off of, one that is 6 meters(20 feet). Another which is over 12 meters(40 feet). If it doesn’t sound much then take a look at the drop and tell me that it isn’t high.

Anyways, so on our way we were talking about why people do things such as marathons, iron man’s and just things that push people to their limits. The reason why I think is that we do it because we would like to challenge ourselves, see if we are capable. of reaching our weakest point and moving forward. And once we actually finish what seemed to be an insurmountable obstacle becomes something a little less frightening, our limits are expanded, our capacity has just grown enormously.

So now we get to the waterfall. My one friend says he is going to do the 12 meter jump. Now for the past year it has been my goal to do that jump but I never had the confidence, the jump is just so incredibly high. But this time I decide to follow him and jump after he does.

‘This is it!’, I tell myself.

Then I look down to the water: ‘Was it this high? Thought it was a bit shorter.’

The nerves start to kick in, fear surrounds me. My confidence has faded and I’m left contemplating if I should do it at all, if I should just wait till next time.

‘But was I not just talking about pushing myself to my limits, knowing that doing this will just make the possibilities of doing something even more daunting more achievable? The irony.’

My rational mind was telling me it was a bad idea. But my adventurous spirit was calling, pushing me to just go for it. When has it ever failed me?

My heart starts to beat faster, everyone around me was now watching. The collywobbles started to rise and I just couldn’t do it. The jump was so big.

I waited. Thought about it, then turned to say that my friends need to clap for me, slow clap style. They started to go. The faster they clapped, the more I wanted to quit until there was just a moment of peace, the moment where the slow clap became a fast one and I believed.

And I jumped.

The fear was gone. It was just free-falling from there. I did start to think: ‘Okay when am I actually going to hit the water because goodness this actually takes a while, till finally I hit the water.

I sunk for about 2 seconds and when I got up I was a new man. I felt different. Honestly. It may be small for you but it was as if a weight off my shoulders fell to the ground and had no grip on me anymore.

So the next time I get to that rock I won’t be as scared, I’ll definitely jump again because I know I can do it. There just needs to be water at the bottom.

So does it take years to be a pro? No. You just need to get it right once, and above all: Believe in yourself.

How to walk with confidence

I read one of the funniest stories in the bible the other day. Significantly short. But the message I found was impactful on my own life, and it gave me a laugh.

The story comes from Acts 20. Paul is in the town called Troas. He intends to leave the next day so he decides to speak to the people until midnight at a home. When it started to get very late one of the men started to fall asleep. He was sitting by the window and when he eventually fell asleep he fell 3 floors. When they picked him up they said he was dead! But when Paul came and picked him up he said:”Don’t be alarmed, he’s alive!”.

As soon as Paul touched the man, he rose from the dead! He didn’t say a word, didn’t pray for the man. He simply had so much power and anointing from the Holy Spirit that simply by touch he could raise people from the dead. And even in his other stories, people would use a handkerchief that Paul touched as a healing tool for the sick.

What stood out for me was how confident Paul was. I’m almost certain he walked to the man with the faith that when he touched the man that he would wake up. The confidence that he had was not in a spirit of arrogance and in the belief that the miracles that was done through him was because of his doing, instead he had the spirit of confidence that God had shown and given to him.

I feel that we need to live the way that Paul lived. With the confidence not in our own ability but from our creator. The one who has set us free. The one who gave His only son to take the burden of all our sins on himself. Our boundaries should be defined by our Father and not by the things that others tell us are boundaries.

Another thing I realised was that the way Paul postured himself was a direct reflection of the relationship he had with his father. They were probably so close that he could audibly hear the voice of the Lord. He would know when to do what, when to take a step forward, when to take one back, when to leave, when to stay. All because of the relationship he had with the Lord and the time he spent with Him. There was definitely tough times, times where he wouldn’t hear the voice or touch of God. But he knew what was in him, and that’s enough.

We all go through phases. And there are times where we neglect our bibles. We don’t have the drive to get out of bed and go to church, saying a simple prayer is tiring. We just go through a rut with our relationship with God. So how do we get out?

Going back to the basics.

Taking it slow. Start by just reading a chapter a day. Pray for 5 minutes and you will see your life change for the better. Imagine not seeing your friend for a few months. You would lose that tight bond you had. It’s like your daily bread. You constantly need a fresh loaf of bread, otherwise it will go stale and won’t fulfill you the way it should. We need to constantly spend time with Him so that He can reveal another part of His complex heart. We may never understand Him while on earth but there is so much we can while we are alive. Intimacy. That’s all I’m saying.

Confidence and intimacy. That may change your life. Having these 2 key characteristics will show you the way ahead for yourself and to others.

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Life without pain is painful

If you had to ask a world-renowned sports athlete how he became so prosperous he would say that he suffered. If you had to ask a famous writer how he has become so crafty with words and sold many books he would tell you he suffered.

I heard this today in an interview with Jon Foreman, the lead singer and guitarist from the band Switchfoot, great band by the way, and he overheard it from someone else at the store funnily enough. Long story short the message he wanted to bring was that there is light in the chaos, a reason for adversity. if we never struggle in life we may struggle!

My favourite passage in the bible comes from a story in 2 Corinthians 12:10. It’s when Paul gets a thorn in his flesh and at first he is angry that it has happened to him but then comes a moment where he has come to terms with it. A moment of euphoria.

He then says: “I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions and difficulties for when I am weak; then I am strong.”

Through the pain and suffering he finds his strength in God and grows from the experience. I’m sure there was an experience you had in your life that was seemingly impossible at the time but now would seem rather doable, perhaps easy.

I had that moment just recently, I do find it hard to say that it will be easier and less stressful next time around but even so I will at least know how to deal with the situation a lot more efficient.

I was challenged with an amount to pay that was just too much. Although I have some savings in case of an emergency I would still not be able to cover it. I would have to take out a loan that would possibly take me at least a year to pay off while I change my lifestyle to extreme minimalism. Practically never eating out. Not buying miscellaneous items I might need. Not putting money aside for my future. Nothing.

I had that plan but it was stupid. Flawed. I only started to get a better way to sort out the problem by seeking counsel from my mom. Aren’t they always the best advisors?

So I would have to plead to the other party and request that there is anything they can do, but I was nervous, worried what they would say. So I gave it a day. That evening my life group worshiped and sang the song Good Father. It reminded me how good He is, crazy isn’t it? The coincidence. Even though things are not going the way you want them to, even though you walk through the valley of suffering, fear and even though it seems impossible God is good. Maybe I do take out a loan, maybe not. Regardless He is good.

I started to declare it. When I was ready to confront the other party I was filled with peace and it turns out I couldn’t have gotten a better deal. I saved myself from a large loan. I was thrilled.

You may look at adversity and shake but I look at a time of suffering to produce growth(sometimes). What God also said in that passage is this:

” My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

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Believing in Miracles

There are some radical stories of miracles. Some which have happened thousands of years ago and then there are those which are happening in our lifetime. If anything, more are recurring today.

But what is a miracle? – An extraordinary and welcome event that is not explicable by natural or scientific laws and is therefore attributed to a divine agency. It comes from the Greek thaumasion and the Latin miraculum—as that which causes wonder and astonishment .

To witness a miracle is extremely special and sometimes we are the miracles: Being swept away from death, cured from imminent death or simply saved from harm. I have heard countless stories of people being raised from the dead. Some incredible stories have jumped to life.

So one would think that there is no obstacle that cannot be overcome. No sickness that can’t be cured for He has done it all am I right?

In my honest opinion I say yes. Yes he can save you even when your heart stops beating or any other terrible disease. I have faith in any situation. Regardless of the scientific probability of there being a transformation in a person’s situation, see what I did there 😉

But then there comes a task my way. A task that seems rather difficult, way out of my comfort, a task I will need to dedicate hours on to get done for weeks on end. It’s more like many tasks culminating to one big task. I can do it on my own though. I just need to eat right. Get the required sleep when I can and not spend a second procrastinating or getting distracted.

It is a big task. And right now I feel that I have fell short. Right now I’m rather sick, according to the doctor I have bronchitis. Thankfully it hasn’t reached the harmful stage and I am getting better by the day. My guess is I have been eating rather unhealthy and working rather hard. So once I’m fully recovered I’ll go back at it, this time still working as hard as I can but I won’t be eating so much junk, maybe just a little.

That way I’ll know for sure if I’m actually working too hard and need to reassess my timetable.

Sometimes He wants us to grow in our capacity while other times He wants us to learn saying no and get into His rest.

You might be wondering, now how on earth does this have to do with miracles or is this two different blog posts I accidentally added together?

So going back to miracles. I am able to succeed and complete my task on my own with the gifts and talents already given to me. But that’s not how our relationship with God should be. It should be a constant friendship, a constant relationship of guidance, wisdom and revelation. He can assist you to your goals in a swifter fashion, in a way that will leave you in a better state than you were.

I came off the phone with my mother today and she reminded me of something we tend to forget. God works outside of time. So seeing that time for Him is irrelevant He can take us out of the world where time is irrelevant while still keeping us here on earth. Something that may take 2 hours in our world can take just a few seconds if we are in God’s timing!

It may sound ridiculous to some, but try it, ask for that much needed time you need to get done what is needed to get done. I always wished that I could pause time, study for days for a test and when I have learned what I need to learn time will start again, I can write the test and I’ll receive great marks. As much as that can happen He will probably not do it if you leave your study time for the last few minutes before a test and then start to learn.

What I’m trying to portray though is that we can sometimes have faith for the impossible. Believe that anything is possible. But then comes something small. Something we don’t really need help from God, but then we believe we can do it ourselves or is something that doesn’t need the hand of God to help us. In fact, He wants to be there for us daily. For every single task regardless of the size or difficulty.

If we have faith the size of a mustard seed we can move mountains, but that also means we can move rocks.

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Down to the wire

I feel like I’ve been talking a lot about struggle lately. I’m going to talk about it again. Previously I have overcome it and this time is no different. Except that I am still in the middle of a big trial and tribulation. I know I can get through it too.

This last week has been tiresome. It’s one of those times where I really have had to grind through some challenges. A few sleepless nights, a few nights where my bedtime is the time I pass out. It doesn’t feel like the day ever ends, it’s just a constant battle.

However there was a day of triumph.

It’s rather a funny story too. So without further ado, here is my story.

My colleague and I arrive at a new clients house just after 9am. We had to install Wi-Fi into their house, but most importantly, the coverage had to be brilliant with no intermittent speeds. Problem was, the house was enormous. Monumental dare I say.

Reaching the very top of the house made us realise this was not going to be a normal job. We would be here for a while.

It probably took us about half an hour just to plan what to do. Plan A didn’t work. Plan B didn’t too. Luckily plan C worked out.

Plan C was risky. We had no idea how we were going to run a cable through the house through the conduits because we struggled to get through just one section of the room let alone the house. We did however see a data cable already inside the house. Was it meant for something? We weren’t sure. But we gave it a try. Seeing that either ends were not crimped. There were 3 sections of the house that needed Wi-Fi routers. The opposite ends were simple for there was clearly one data cable. However, in the middle of the house there were plenty of cables coming from all over the house. And they were all white. How would I know what was a data cable and what not? Then how would I know that it was the right cable?

I eventually narrowed it down to two cables. I had no idea which one was the cable so I took the two cables, one in each hand and prayed. I asked God which one to cut and waited.

I wasn’t going to do anything until I was sure God directed me to one. If I cut the wrong cable it could be devastating for I wouldn’t know what it was for.

I started to feel a pull on the right side. So I opened my eyes and saw what cable it was. Funny story I was holding onto the same cable! So it didn’t matter which cable I felt I should cut for it would be the same!

I felt that it had to be that cable so I cut it. It was very scary but I did it. When I eventually cut it I saw that it was in fact a data cable. What a relief. So if for some reason it wasn’t the right cable we could just add an extension.

Turns out it was the right cable after testing!

I was blown away by God’s goodness that day. What I learned from that experience is that sometimes God has already given you the tools you need to do what you are made to do.

What He also does occasionally is give you only one option so that you won’t need to worry on how any other outcome could go because He already knows the correct one.

We sometimes feel we need to be so spiritual to get an answer from Him and when we just start to do, when we make a choice, we start to see God’s hand guiding and assisting you. It is sometimes difficult to see at first because we judge the unfinished product. But once we see the final product we realise how He has been assisting us RIGHT FROM THE START.

My current product isn’t close to done but I know I am on the right track. It has given me courage not to give up but rather to push through, to give that little extra.

I declare perseverance to all who are reading this! Amen.

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