Everything that you are about to read is true. These are some of my experiences that I would like to share with you. It is not the whole story of my life so far but bits and pieces of “good”, “bad” and “in-between”. Everyone has a skeleton or two in the closet, right? Right. So, bear with me. Thank you for reading my testimony.
I was raised as a “Christian”, and I went to church as a child. I didn’t know what the Christian life was all about then, so I just went with the flow. My parents got divorced when I was around 9 years old. My two brothers and I then moved in with my mom where we all shared a small flat. It was pretty chaotic at times but my mom did her best. Eventually it all got too stressful for her and the three of us ended up in a boarding school which was located in a small Free State town.
As a result, I associated with the wrong type of boys. I started smoking around the age of 12 and we would occasionally get drunk on weekends at this boarding house. Around this age I started noticing that I was a bit dysfunctional. I didn’t know how to study, I had an unhealthy and abnormal interest in sex and we all just behaved like hooligans.
The divorce of my parents unfortunately played a big role in all my troubles, issues and afflictions. I passed grade 12 with the help of God, because I was supposed to fail most of my subjects. I think that might have been my first known miracle!
I then became a policeman and got married at the age of 21 thanks to a pregnant girlfriend. Of course, I never knew what true love was, so we got divorced 10 years later. I was just too immature and young to be a responsible husband and father.
So, I carried on as a policeman while living and maintaining a life that was separated from God. My life did not reflect a true intimate relationship with Jesus at all. Occasionally I did reach out to God but only to fall back in a sinful lifestyle on a regular basis. God was not in my life. Little did I know that God was patient with me and up to something. He didn’t focus on my mistakes, sin and shortcomings but rather on the bigger picture. So, buckle up and follow the rest of my story (in a nutshell)…
One night a few years ago I was praying in bed. I was sitting in an upright position in my bed, with the lights on. While praying, I suddenly and unexpectedly heard/felt a “voice” inside. I heard and felt it simultaneously. It was as clear as daylight. The “voice” said: “My genade is genoeg vir jou”. It was in Afrikaans. English translation: “My grace is sufficient for you” (2 Corinthians 12:9) Nothing else, just that. It was a very clear and strong message. It just came out of the blue. That was the first time God spoke to me in this clear way. It wasn’t an audible voice, but a very clear voice inside my body. It was the Holy Spirit, without a doubt. This happened about 7-8 years ago.
A few years later (not being a policeman anymore), I was in South Korea as an English teacher. One day I was very down and depressed. I went down on my knees and cried out to God…asking Him:
“Where are You??!” “Do You even hear me??!” I asked, with tears rolling down my eyes: “Father, please…just give me a sign that You hear me, please show Yourself to me”.
I got up and washed my face. I left my apartment a few minutes later to go and get some pizza. After walking for a block or two, I stopped dead in my tracks. There, right in front of me, on the pavement, I saw a small black cross. I picked it up…and then it hit me! It was God! It was Him…telling me, showing me…. here I am… I hear you. It was an emotional experience.
Few years later, I got a teaching job in Jeju Island, South Korea. After explaining to me that everything would go smoothly, my Korean recruiter assured me to have peace of mind and travel to Jeju Island without a visa, since Jeju Island operates without such requirements, as opposed to Seoul. Apparently, it was common practice to do it this way. This is where things went horribly wrong…
- First, immigration didn’t want to allow me through at Johannesburg Airport without an official Korean visa. It was a struggle. After a while, they called Jeju immigration from the counter, and finally, permission was given. I made it through immigration and boarded the plane just in time. Not over yet.
- After my arrival at Hong Kong Airport, I spent some time inside the airport. Just before boarding my connection flight to Seoul, I suddenly realized that my passport was gone. A horrible feeling came over me and I started to panic. Out of desperation I ran to the nearest information counter. There my passport was, in possession of the lady sitting at the information counter. My passport was found in an airport trolley and handed in by an unknown person. I just made it to the plane in time!
- After my arrival at Jeju International Airport, Jeju immigration refused to allow me through. Guess why? No Korean visa in my passport! By that time, I was mentally and physically exhausted and drained. After a while, they called my Korean recruiter. He had to beg immigration to let me through. Finally, I was allowed to enter. I was taken to my new apartment to settle in and be ready to report at my new school the next day.
- After waking up the next morning, something just came over me and made me jump out of my bed. I had this immense desire to just get out of that place and go straight to the airport and just leave. I literally ran out of the building in order to catch a taxi to the airport. That same night I flew to Seoul. The next day I left for Hong Kong in order to catch my connection flight to South Africa. Problems over? Not quite yet.
- My connection flight from Hong Kong to South Africa was cancelled and rescheduled for the next day due to bad weather. So I got checked in at a nearby hotel in Hong Kong for the night. Later that night, just when I was about to get ready for bed, a strange sensation came over me…a pain in my lower back that was building…and building. It got worse and worse. Kidney stones!!! The pain was unimaginable. Combinations of symptoms like severe pain in waves, nausea and vomiting just overwhelmed me. This went on until about 4am in the morning. After that, the symptoms gradually started to disappear. It was a tough night, but I survived.
I arrived in South Africa later that day. I struggled with depression for two weeks and couldn’t forgive myself for “throwing away” a very nice job at a public school in Jeju Island. A wasted opportunity. Well, so I thought. Then, after about three weeks I saw a teaching position on davesESLcafe.com. “Teachers needed for military students in Saudi Arabia” I immediately applied. That very same day, a recruiter called me and offered me this job. Without an interview! (another miracle). I was instructed to do my medical and get my visa in order. Few weeks later I left for Saudi Arabia.
Why did this all happen to me? To begin with, I wasn’t very close to God at that time. I basically made a wrong move by going to Jeju Island, without having a close relationship with God. I had prayed to Him about Jeju before my departure from South Africa, but my life didn’t reflect a true personal relationship with Him at that time. It was a lesson. He allowed all those bad things during my trip and brought me back…just to open the right door for me. It was a valuable lesson and a miracle from God. I have realized, not only do you have to pray, but also live close to God every moment of your life…otherwise prayer doesn’t have any meaning or power.
There were many challenges in Saudi Arabia, but financially it was rewarding. I ended up at Al Asala University during my 3rd year in Saudi Arabia. The students were horrible, showing no respect and cheating all the time. It got so bad that I seriously thought about leaving Saudi Arabia after the 1st semester.
Things did not go well! I had developed a rather unhealthy interest in supernatural phenomena like “lucid dreaming” and the occult over a period of time…partly because of my isolation and anti-social life in Saudi Arabia due to an extreme conservative Islamic culture. I was lonely, vulnerable and an easy target for the enemy. With the help of my own research and techniques I managed to master the ability to achieve successful lucid dreams where I would do unholy things during my dreams in a “waking state”, up to the point where I would commit sinful things in a lucid dream, for example having sex with someone, etc. I was playing with fire and I eventually stopped with this dangerous practice. But that only led me to another “hobby” which at first appeared to be very innocent and harmless.
I was once told that it was possible to distinguish between “bad” and “good” food by using a swinging pendulum. It actually seemed to work and it was very cool!
Well, that was just a trap by the devil himself and I was drawn and lured into something else more disturbing and dangerous. As a result, I took it a bit further and I tried to make contact with spirits by using my pendulum by applying a certain method. It worked! I managed to make contact with a few spirits up to a point where I would develop a relationship or two with dead spirits, not knowing that they were actually demonic entities! Long story short, I was lied to, and these spirits tried to turn my life into chaos by telling me lies about my health and deceiving me, for example that I had only six months left to live due to cancer, etc. They would apologize but only to do it again later.
Initially, I was so mesmerized by these spirits and so puffed up with my “supernatural progress”. How foolish! By then I was firmly involved with these activities and on my way to hell. I was playing with fire. I eventually came to my senses and repented to the Lord. I confessed everything to the Lord and asked for forgiveness. After that I never ever had an intentional lucid dream or an experience with demonic spirits again. There was just one little “hick-up” one day a few years later where I tried something with a pendulum again. I was looking for a “yes” or “no” answer regarding a big decision I had to make. That very night I fell out of my bed and landed flat on my back.
The Lord got my full attention and reminded me about my promise not to do this again. I repented again and finally, that was the end of it. Praise the Lord!
(A word of caution: Do not attempt to do what I did regarding my activities with the occult as described above. You will only open the door to the enemy, and you will suffer the consequences! I was fortunate to get out of it by the grace of God. I condemn and reject all these practices with all of my heart, and I distance myself from anything similar that anyone would get involved with). A few people might say this is all rubbish and nonsense. Well, that is to be expected…but it is all true. Evil does exist.
(Please know that if you remain an unbeliever, you will certainly meet these demonic entities in whatever shape or form when you die. That is guaranteed. Then you WILL believe there is a God…and then it will be too late).
A few other “disciplinary actions” were implemented by the Lord in the next few years, for example when I deliberately viewed pornography one day. I knew it was wrong but I did it anyway. (It is very dangerous when you sin willfully and deliberately when realizing it is against God’s will and just pure sin). The next day I was walking high up in the mountains on a farm. Suddenly my feet slipped and I crashed down on my back and neck. It was like falling from a 2-storey building and it was incredibly painful and shocking. Right there on my back (with a semi broken finger and bloody hand) God said to me,”This is what you get when you sin deliberately. Next time it might be worse”. It was a warning for sure. I confessed my sin and my hand was healed after about 5 months. I never watched pornography again!
Now when I look back, I realize what a loving Father I actually have. He disciplined me when I needed it but He was also so patient with me at the same time. Now, whenever I realize that God disciplines me for whatever reason, I thank Him…because that is what any loving earthly father would do with his own son or daughter in real life. God is a loving Father that disciplines us for our own good, not to hurt us but to protect us and steer us in the right direction. He cares deeply.
Today I am delivered from demonic/familiar spirits, lucid dreaming and pornography. Praise the Lord!!! I still sin in general but there is no more condemnation.
(You see, unbelievers don’t get disciplined by the Lord. Why? Because they don’t have a heavenly Father. You only have a heavenly Father once you accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior while having a growing relationship with the Lord. The devil doesn’t care about unbelievers, because they are blinded and already firmly in his grip…and they don’t even know it!). I am just being honest here. Not judging anyone.
Back to my time in Saudi Arabia…one day, I was walking on my way from gym, when a feeling of total numbness came over my legs. I couldn’t even walk properly. My legs were so wobbly and weak. I barely made it back to my apartment! I knew something was wrong. This went on for another day or two. I really got worried. This made my decision to leave easier. So, I left for good.
The miracles and grace of God
After my arrival in South Africa (during my leave), I contacted my boss and resigned from my job via email. No one month notice. I just quit. Right there and then. Surprisingly my boss was OK with it.
After about a month in South Africa I saw an advertisement of an apartment at a very good retirement village in a very good area. I made contact with an agent. We met. The price was really low.
I had to move quickly, because other buyers suddenly appeared on the scene as well. I bought the apartment. On top of that, the agent was the nicest Christian lady who showed sincere honesty and professionalism.
Summary of this miraculous experience
- 1. My legs healed by itself shortly after my arrival in South Africa. A miracle.
- 2. The retirement village where I bought the flat, is situated right next to my dad’s retirement village (5- minute walking distance between the two retirement villages). A miracle.
- 3. I booked a tour to Israel for September 2018, only to realize what the heck am I going to do until then??? I contacted my boss in Saudi Arabia. He asked me to come back for the last two months. He even paid my airfare, which is very unusual for such a short period of time left. Another miracle.
You see, God “forced” me back to South Africa after my 1st semester (numbness in legs)…to give me a much-needed break, to surprise me with a nice apartment next to my dad’s village, to enable me to spend quality time with my dad, take me back to Saudi Arabia, and to give me the opportunity to finish my contract, after all. Perfect timing.