The Journey Continues

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One journey ended and another started.

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To overcome

At the end of our stay in a country we are given questions to answer. These questions usually go along the lines of what did you think, how did you feel, etc. The purpose is for true reflection to take place and so that everything isn't internalised. This is called debriefing and I admit that it's really empowering. In Benin, a small West African country, we've each been given the task of writing a blog. It's a good thing since I'm also overdue on writing a blog anyway. But, and here's the reason for this explanation, this isn't just any old blog. It has to be about what I have overcome this year. I didn't say debriefing is always fun...Without getting too spiritual, what does it mean to overcome one self? Can we ever truly overcome ourselves? I believe it is a state of being where you no longer place yourself first. As soon as a person realises that it is not about yourself and that in fact you can't do it by yourself, then you're on your way to overcoming yourself. Through this year, by the grace of God, I've been placed on the road to overcome myself. This is quite a bold statement, arrogant even. The old me would have stated it out of arrogance... I have come to realise that my reasons for doing a year expedition with Global Challenge were initially selfish at heart. I believe that this was quite transparent to some, yet surprisingly I was obliged.Here I was literally running away from my past. A broken relationship, the girl who I thought I'd marry ended up hating me. My father's untimely death that I refused to process. My career of being a firefighter was a dream come true that turned into a nightmare. Addiction, smoking cannabis on a daily basis, my form of self medication to ignore my depression and so much more. I was a failure and in the end I also failed with my attempted suicide. I believe any sane minded person would run from such a past. Like many know and everyone eventually learn, some things can't be run from. From the onset of this year I knew I would 'overcome' but never in my wildest dreams could I have foretold what this would entail. My life's mantra has always been all or nothing. Mediocrity, being luke warm and indeference was how I placed myself on the path to self destruction. A few things to overcome this year included my shame of my past, my selfishness, my self contempt, my self reliance, my self doubt, in short my old self. These abstracts weren't what I was or am but they were what I used to base myself off ofSure, my past doesn't define me anymore but what will I build my future on? This year has been inexplicable and yet it's so simple. A concentrated dose of God's love. Even though I have sometimes only allowed myself to experience things collaterally. In ministration there was no way that I could withstand this OD of love. God was out to get me and it would cost me my life. Now I can and will proudly declare that I died to my old self. Only through Jesus and what He has done can I be reborn. He has made me able to overcome. The question beckons, will I ever wholly overcome myself and my human nature? I don't know how much time has been allotted neither or how much is needed.But I'll be damned if I'm not giving it my all!I cling to God's promises.I believe.10 Romans 11-13The message Bible: Scripture reassures us, "No one who trusts God like this—heart and soul—will ever regret it." It's exactly the same no matter what a person's religious background may be: the same God for all of us, acting the same incredibly generous way to everyone who calls out for help. "Everyone who calls, 'Help, God!' gets help."
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Phoebe-Ann Beukes
Nickie! Your blogs are awesome!!!
Saturday, 10 February 2018 01:08
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A beginning and an end.The obvious is that this was our first country and that this was the beginning of our journey.From the onset of our journey God has come and shown me the joy in serving other's, specifically those that serve Him where others dare not stay.The end is less obvious and, more...An end to self deception, an end to self pity and most importantly an end to past fixation. I  had been clutching like a corner stone.Wearing a grudge like a crown, unable to forgive.But not anymore!I can gladly say that a paradoxical mind shift has come upon me. I have more patience, I can truly smile once more and I mostly think before I speak. Still under construction.Thanks be to God. I gave away the stone and there is only One who wears the crown.I would​ say that I woefully regret the time it has taken me to get to this point but then ofcourse I would not be at this point.God has shown me so much during such a short period of time and I am yet to grasp the magnitude of what's ​to come. My physical bag is getting heavier and heavier but I'm glad to say that my spiritual bag is getting lighter by the day.I let go.#
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Feet in the air

It's truly happening.So many things, people and circumstances have conspired together to have me not on this journey. To name but a few obstacles; a lack of finances, an old flame and most notably my dark past. I was lack lustre to believe that this journey would come to be a reality for me. I initially withheld from engaging with my teammates fully.Why build friendships and relationships if it won't bear fruits?Why build up any plans or expectations if chances are they would just come to naught? Why risk getting hurt if you have nothing to gain?Just one of the 'lessons' that many of us are taught early in life. A dogma that the world had been pushing down my throat for far too long.No more! Aboard the plane on our way to China.As far as I can tell, all my friends and fellow travelers are asleep. Yet I'm bubbling with joy. This is real! This journey is happening! Still such a strange experience to trust God with my whole being, I'm still growing in trust and honestly I could hardly believe it even while we were boarding, I don't know if I was expecting ninjas, the army or a natural disaster. I couldn't believe that I'm worthy, "Oh woe is he of little faith."God makes the impossible possible and it's wonderfully possible to trust in Him. I'm sure my trust levels will get there eventually. I was waiting for my feet to touch the ground in China, let me just say I've got some really bad trust issues. But wait, an apifiny; This journey is my miracle. Suddenly bawling my eyes out, while no one will notice of course, I have come to realise;It's alright to trust.Trusting in the Lord, I have nothing to lose and everything to gain.Thank You Lord, I stand as witness and testimony, it's OK to trust.#
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Jason Cordier
Nikkie braaa, that authenticity amazed me so much, you are such a piece of high quality GOLD in God's treasury. Come on man, He'll... Read More
Monday, 13 March 2017 09:39
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Hello Goodbye

First of, hello from this, my new blog with which I'll be sharing some of my experiences of the journey that I'm partaking in this year. This first entry is a short synopsis of what has precluded this journey and also what has happened thus far.After having to say goodbye to a significant other in my life I also tried to say goodbye to the world... Fortunately God had other plans for me and decided I should stay a little while longer. This is when I had reached the lowest point of time in my life and I finally embraced Jesus Christ as my saviour. Some gentle nudging was required from a dear family member, to whom I am eternally gratefull. Thank you Sheilans. I now know that I'll never again be able to fall so low now that I have accepted Christ as my saviour. From saying hello to Jesus started a process of saying goodbye to my old ways, albeit gradually and not without some growth pains.Two months later my brother had come back from Thailand to support me and to generally keep an eye on me. He ,with some initial tripidation, persuaded me to join Global Challenge. For those of you whom don't know what Global Challeng is feel free to check out the rest of this site. In short it is basically a NGO that facilitates journeys for young people to do charity and missionary work throughout the nations. After five years of being a firemen it was time to say goodbye to the service. By the end of November I said "sayonara" to the fire brigade with the sole purpose of joining Global Challenge Expeditions. This is how I've now become a pensioner with no pension and for some reason I still haven't been able to make use of my pensioners discount.These last few weeks in Jeffreys Bay have been all about meeting new people and getting to know one another. We've been placed in situations that have brought the worst and also the best out of us. From survivor like sitiuations through to a Luke 10 journey: Traveling with no money or any type of provision and only trusting the Lord to provide. Throughout all of this we've had teachings from some amazing teachers, pastors and missionaries. We've learned to know ourselves and also eachother better.Already I am accutely aware of a major change in myself, my fellow travellers and teammates. This makes me look forward to what is yet to come!? It's very humbling and also makes me gratefull that the Lord has led me on and to this journey.A journey that I can never deserve nor would have chosen for myself.Only through God's Grace am I saved.Stay tuned for more, I leave Y'all with a verse that has meant a lot to me;The Message Bible Ps 18:16-19But me he caught-reached all the way from sky to sea; He pulled me out of that ocean of hate, that enemy chaos, the void in which I was drowning. They hit me when I was down, but God stuck by me. He stood me up on a wide open field; I stood there saved-surprised to be loved!#
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