Written by Tjaart van Zyl

It is a Sunday night in Port Elizabeth in the Eastern Cape of South Africa.

Sunday nights are normally a lazy affair in the van Zyl household. It's normally only when the Carte Blanche jingle echoes through the house when butterflies in the tummies make you aware that the weekend reached its conclusion.

This Sunday night is different. The Holy Spirit led us to attend a workshop at Waypoint. The Workshop was led by Helmer Jensen. The workshop stretched over a few Sundays. How to disciple was the just of the topic that was covered.

Helmer and his family are thousands of kilometres away from Missouri where they once called home.

He woke up one morning having a stable job in a town in America. His family, including teenage daughters, were settled. His life was pretty much organized. He received a prompting from God. He was called to do missionary work in Sub-Saharan Africa for a 4-year term, seizing ministry opportunities, faithfully serving the Lord by equipping people to become Harvesters for Christ.
His story resonated with me. Imagine if you get that call to leave what you are busy with, to Harvest people for Jesus. 12 Disciples did. Helmer and his family did.

It is now Monday morning. I just dropped off the girls at school and I changed the music selection from some or other artist that had writer's block and could only come up with a one-line lyric song - to my music selection. Oceans is calming my soul before this hectic week kicks off.

"You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep
My faith will stand"

These words calmed me down in January 2016 when I swam the 1.9 km in the ocean swim leg of the Half IronMan. Now it takes my mind back to last night and Helmer's testimony.

"And I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine
Your grace abounds in deepest waters
Your sovereign hand
Will be my guide
Where feet may fail and fear surrounds me
You've never failed and You won't start now
So I will call upon Your name
And keep my eyes above the waves
When oceans rise
My soul will rest in Your embrace
For I am Yours and You are mine
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior
Oh, Jesus, you're my God!"

I knew what the words of this song meant when I heard it for the first time… and it made me shudder. Will I ever have enough faith if the "Spirit lead(s) me where my trust is without borders
………..Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander"? Helmer and his family were ready.

Months passed by and this debate still raged on in my head. I lie at God's feet and spend intimate moments with him. Sometimes I debated with Him. He showed me that He will lead me deeper into the water. He chose me to Stand Tall. He told me I will resign from my work and leave the Country. He has a mission for my family and me.

'But God! I earn a good salary as a Senior State Advocate in the civil service! I have 18 years to retirement! I will get a nice packet and play Golf every day, whilst waving to my wife, Hazel (eight years younger than me) when she drives off to spend a day at her practice.

Hazel is a Registered Counsellor who specialises in Trauma Counselling. The kids are in their teens and settled at Collegiate. They made friends for life.

The sums just do not add up God! We have so much to lose.

Hazel and I were active leaders at Waypoint. We served everywhere and eventually were led to lead Transit for probably about three or four years. We saw one or two generations pass through our leadership. We lived every moment with those kids. Their hardship or happiness was felt deep in our hearts. We lived their trials and tribulations. We equally celebrated their triumphs.

Hazel and I maintain that it was not a situation of us teaching the kids about something, the Spirit led us to teach them. It was a case of the Spirit teaching both the kids and us the ways of our Father.

Most of these kids were so Spiritually mature that God spoke through them and manifested many things in our lives.

One particular series stood out for me whilst I was wrestling with God as I earlier described. It had to do with the fact that our journey from point A to B is mapped out. If you live in the Spirit, you will reach your point B in no time. If you live in the flesh, your contour will look like when I play Golf – not straight but zig-zag. The moral is: we will reach point B, but will reach it quicker if we are obedient to His will and not ours.

The message from my Saviour was loud and clear, but I tried to raise good counterarguments.

Then, like a bolt out of the blue, our long-time neighbours, Francois and Annerie (or as I call them Buurman and Buurvrou) one night announce that they are in the process of immigrating to New Zealand. We were astounded. "Why?" was the only question I could think of. "God showed us that we need to go there" I was dumbstruck. I felt guilty.