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My Testimony – My Story – Let the Butterfly Go

We are all fools searching for a life worth living.

Today is the last day of the past, and by sharing my story with the world, I can set my soul free from the chaos within. But my story is not important, because you also have story to tell, and that is why I want to finish writing mine; so I can listen to yours. We can write many books, but how many could we read if we would only listen. I enjoy sharing my thoughts, but I don’t like repeating myself or even acting like I know, because quite honestly there is still a lot I’ve yet to experience, so I don’t.

To be humble is to accept the fact that you don’t know everything. You can speculate, you can pray, and you can even get high on DMT and act like Moses who went through the veil to see God’s voice. Michelangelo’s masterpiece of Moses is the embodiment of the authority God gave a mortal man. History might even repeat itself if we look at the captivity our people find themselves in through the “All-Seeing Eye” we’ve created as a result of our obsession to have power, wealth, and control.

Thank you for following my journey back to the Father: the so-called Original Design. I’ve had some amazing experiences that shaped the way I see God and life. Teaching through stories is what I wish to do, and I want to start with my own story to demonstrate what faith in our Unseen Creator has done for me and my family. Thank you for allowing me to speak freely about my metamorphosis.

The purpose of my life is to sacrifice for the ones I love, and that includes you because I choose to. Sharing my own family’s testimony of blood, sweat, and tears is an act of obedience towards God. Once I’ve said my said, and I’ve shared everything I know, then I would love to listen to your story. All of us have a story to tell, and all of us want to be heard, and that’s why I’d like to share my heart with yours so you can see me standing naked and vulnerable. I was once a fool, but now I can see.

During the process of building something unique through the vision placed in my heart, it has come to my attention that God has been the One building me, strengthening my character through the challenges I’ve had to overcome, much like Nehemiah re-building the wall. May this story reveal everything about me that is hidden, and everything that has been left unsaid, so you can understand my journey back to heaven, into the presence of God. I choose my destination, and you should too.

My life is a blessing. I’m not here to complain. I had an easy life, but it made a weak man of me. That’s why it’s so important for you to understand why strength training is something given to us by God, not only for our physical well-being, but especially for our mental and spiritual well-being. Being weak means you are emotionally unstable, you live in fear, and this keeps you stuck in space.

Bodybuilding taught me what it takes to physically grow and go beyond, and it was the Words in my heart that were used to strengthen my mind and bring healing to my soul. When you walk around with anger, depression, and bitterness in your heart, everything you touch becomes defiled, and you destroy things that are beautiful. This is why I’m writing to you, so you can see through my eyes.

Perhaps like me you feel the chaos around you, and you see the injustice in this Babylonian world, and maybe you feel like you can’t do anything about it but write? That’s okay, perhaps all you need to do is write. Writing is a healing practice and a way for us to pass knowledge from one generation to the next. There is something beautiful about writing that words cannot explain, but once a story is placed in your heart by God, then you can come to understand why writing is a gift from Above.

As it is written, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He is was in the beginning with God. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of mankind.” – John 1:1

THE FIRST GENERATION

Hi. My name is Jan-Roux, but you can call me Jan. I’ve been working in the Health & Fitness industry as a strength and conditioning coach for the past 8 years and this is what I enjoy doing to serve people.

Teaching others how to effectively burn fat and build muscle is what I do best. I believe this life chose me as I’ve been prepared for my craft through various challenges, and now I can share this with you.

If you grew up bullied, rejected, or even hated, then I would like you to know I understand your pain. Looking back now, I can “connect the dots” like Steve Jobs says. This introduction about Jan is not about me, nor is it about you, it’s about what God has done in my life. At 27 He opened my eyes; therefore, I believe. The evidence is all around me. Once I was blind, but now I can see. A blind man cannot see even if he wanted to. He needs something divine to open his eyes to the Original Design.

For years I walked around unable to see God, and that’s why I would like to share what He has done in my life in the most detailed way, even if only to help me know how much depth there is to His grace. When I was younger, I rebelled against society, and I ended up in a mental health treatment facility. But my past does not define me, it refined me. My story is about the unseen battles we all have to face in this world as children of God. You have a story, and so do I, but our stories aren’t important if they’re not going to bring hope to someone who is ready to give up and die. That’s why we survived.

You see, I grew up like a king. I had everything a boy could ask for. My mother was raised with wealth. My grandfather, Archie Roux, was a man who worked until his hands were bleeding. They owned a farm in the Franschhoek winelands where they manufactured clothing and farmed with cling peaches. His resources gave my mom the opportunity to become Prof. M.J Kotze, Human Molecular Geneticist.

My father, Jan Daniel Kotze was raised by a strong stern family man who upheld the law, a religious man who made sure there was order at home. My father was very athletic and muscular, and he held a few records and accolades he still likes to “brag” with. Funny as it might be, my father became a Magistrate who made sure there was order in the courts of Cape Town, and at home. A high standard.

My parents got married at 21/25 and travelled a bit as my mother presented her genomics research. Think about this for a moment: My mom was a baby boomer, one of the 1st scientists in the world to experience the advances in medical technology for DNA sequencing. She understands all the basics. My parents are awesome if I have to say so myself, but living up to awesome can be a heavy crown.

Three months after I was born my grandfather died in a freak car accident and they sold the farm. My grandmother moved to town where she happily lived out her days baking cakes and taking care of her grandchildren while her children worked hard to enjoy the freedom their education brought. This meant long family holidays, overseas trips, lots of toys, and truly anything your heart desired.

I was a spoiled young boy, and quite the Casanova on the playground, but at 7 my world changed when I heard the audible voice of God speak to me one night. All He said was, “Let the butterfly go”. That was it, and I did let go, but I had no idea how deep God’s Words could change a human’s soul. You see God always speaks in parables, and “setting the butterfly free” had many layers of meaning. 

After that night I partially lost sight in my right eye. My mother first noticed I was struggling to read, and after a few eyes test they confirmed the muscles in my right eye have weakened. The eye specialist prescribed a pair of glasses, the frame was big, thick, and filled with tigers-eye gemstones, and that’s when the bullying started. Kids in school can be cruel as we are all aware, but it’s a part of growing up.

Over time I became less social, and TV games with my younger brother, Gerick, became my comfort. My real desire was to be outdoors in nature exploring the world. I loved collecting all exotic things, anything from bugs, to spiders, to reptiles, to tadpoles. I wanted them all for myself, to have and to hold till death do us part. It sounds worse than it was, but a few “bugs” did have to die in the process.

Inactivity and sweet treats made me gain even more weight; and at the age of 12 I weighed 80kg. Losing weight was hard, and I even tried Herbalife for a while. I still remember the day I went to a pool party where my crush was. Sucking it in while looking down to make sure it was in… How embarrassing. Insecurity smells, and people around you can smell it too, and this will automatically disqualify you.

I had my fat little heart broken in a such a brutal way by the person I was absolutely infatuated with, and it change something in me, and not in a good way. So, please remember, if you find that someone is obsessed with you, don’t turn the world against them. Your actions can lead someone who might be rejected at home feel so rejected by everyone else in the world that they become self-destructive.

When an immature mind who has no capacity to think of anyone or anything outside of their own emotional response gets rejected by “love” they usually act in a chaotic uncontrollable manner that pushes them even further away from the people they desire love and affection from. Including their ability to show love and affection to themselves. This can lead to habits that takes away their vitality.

I for one did not lose my marbles in that way, but I pushed harder to be cool; and to be accepted by the girls I pursued. My heart was too “small” to fight back, and I hated confrontation. This is likely due to the fact that my parents respected each other as professionals and never fought with a raised voice. They were always in control of their actions. Always a place of safety. Which set an amazing example.

It’s good to know where you come from. My parents are amazing and I love them, even if at one point I despised my dad for being so strict. He was like a religious leader laying down the law to control my actions and withhold me from experiencing a life of freedom, but in hindsight, he was protecting me. This relates back to God’s law, the 10 commandments. They have been given to us for our protection.

Just like the 10 commandments were passed down from God to Moses to Israel, so too the DNA of our parents are passed down to us, and this includes some of their habits and character traits, but we can reset our DNA if we return to the Original Design, and that’s pretty much what my work is about. Restoring the family to it’s former glory to bring order and love to the home and the local communities.

If you’re a parent, or you have a parent. Please consider the fact that your children look to you for guidance and support. If you don’t guide them with love and you don’t walk the walk according to your talk, then you’re a hypocrite and you can’t expect them to follow you. But perhaps despite your lack of leadership they still repeat what you do. That’s why I’m writing to you, to inspire +++ change.

Jesus said, “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before you.”

THE TURNING POINT

“You are so strong, I want you on my team.”

My life changed the day I carried 4 guys across the tri-line to score points for my team in our PE class. After class the rugby coach complimented me on my strength, then he asked me to play for his team. The only reason I said ‘Yes’ was because of the encouragement in his words. So, I took the 1st step. But trust me, being an unfit gamer who gets thrown onto a sports field is one of the worst things ever. I was the fat kid. They placed the entire rugby team behind me in a line, and they pushed me to run.

Soon after I started my rugby ‘career’ I was drafted to play prop in the Western Province U-12 team. After 7 months of hard work, I found myself on tour through the Garden Route of South Africa to represent WP, (jou lekke ding). I lost all the baby fat; and I went from being rejected to fitting in. Losing 40lb made it possible for me to pursue something I felt drawn to, and that’s Skateboarding.

In my final year of primary school I stepped on stage to receive the trophy for rugby player of the year. I would like to take this moment to thank Coach Jacques Viviers from Bellville North Primary School. Your words of encouragement changed my life and you made me believe that I am strong and able. Losing the weight and gaining physical strength enabled me to confidently show up in the world again.

In high school I was a fearless skateboarder who also played rugby to fit in and make his father proud. Skateboarding was something I was really passionate about. I think the individuality and style of each skater made it appealing for an introverted personality as myself. But my father never seemed to like me skating. Perhaps it was due to the fact that skaters were seen as scumbags and rebels by society.

Deep down it never felt like he supported me the same way other parents would support their kids, but I think his tough love approach was the only thing he knew, and therefore how he fathered me. He said he chose not to cheer me on because he decided to leave me on my own so I could learn how to be strong and play the game for me. But back then my adolescent mind did not understand this level of wisdom; all I wanted to hear from Him was, “Well done my beloved Son, I’m so proud of you”.

Being a father is not as simple as making life simple. Think about that for a moment in context to God. I now know why we need to go after our dreams alone. It teaches us how to be strong on our own. Relying on others to carry you gives them the responsibility, and that never works out in the long run. Every player has a unique responsibility on the playing field and if we allow distractions like the praise of men to cloud our vision, we will lose satisfaction, focus, and passion for the part we are all playing.

My mother is a good example of a visionary builder. She gets an idea to solve a problem in her field, and with years of experience her expertise and track record grants her the funding required to employ a team of workers. From a young age I’ve been told that one day I will have to follow in her footsteps to continue what she started with the family business, which is a daunting field of study for anyone. This pushed me into her school curriculum, even though I had other interests like carpentry and art.

If you are born into a family of status driven performers and title holders, then it can be quite easy to fall into the trap of performance-based love. When you do to get, and you don’t get ‘when you do’, you can quickly turn into the perfectionist who is dissatisfied with his best attempt, even if it was good. This happens when parents directly or indirectly push their children to perform for rewards and love. But in the long run this leads to rebellion as the child recognizes that nothing will ever be good enough.

In 2006 – I was 17 at the time – The people my mother trusted turned their backs on her, and she lost her baby girl. Her PhD students, whom she blessed with shares in her new venture called GeneCare, disagreed with the preventative medicine direction she wanted to embark on, and together they (n=3) conspired against her, voting her out with their majority share. My mother’s heart was ripped out by the people she raised, trusted, and loved. She was bleeding for them, and then they crucified her too.

What made things worse is the fact that my father resigned as Magistrate just a few months prior to invest a big portion of his pension into a truck & brakes company with his brothers-in-law. He also lost everything when my mother’s brother, Archie Roux Jnr, died in a freak car accident just like his father. His wife started seeing another man, and together they drove the family business into the ground with their desire for “wine”. My dad tried to make things work, but she took everything she legally could.

At the time I was dating this beautiful girl, Carina Meyer (16). And with everything going on at home, I unknowingly started to suffer. My mother lost 30lb from no longer eating and it really affected me. Running became an obsession for me, and so did my eating habits. I remember the day Carina stood next to me as I was smoking behind the house. I looked at her and said, “I have no desire to be alive.” She cried and just walked away. Three days later her BFF dropped all my things off at the front door.

In my final year of school, I ran like Forest Gump. I could not stop running. I woke up at 4 am to run. When I returned from school I would run. But without knowing it I was treating my mental state. Depression is not something we knew about, thought about, or considered because it was unknown. My parents were both busy working to rebuild what had been lost, and I was just growing darker as the silent screams in my head told me I wasn’t enough. Emo music like “The Used” and “3 Days Grace” understood my pain, and there I found myself once again, alone in my own world, stuck in this game.

Due to past experiences with rejection and my fear of being fat again, I grew obsessed with my weight. I stopped having dinner with my family. Each night I would prepare a tuna salad after eating apples and eggs to get skinnier than my skinny jeans. I accomplished what I set out to achieve, but my mind became darkened by the strain I went through. I fought through the pain. Through my will to survive.

My smoking habit got worse, and I quit playing rugby. I had to go to University to get a good degree. You know to be good enough for a life with a wife and the house with kids and all the goodness. However, if you are constantly working at silencing your own demons through activities like running, at some point those emo disturbances get the better of you, and when this happens you lose control. When we lose control of ourselves we usually make mistakes that lead to painful events in our lives.

I lost control. Binge eating became weekly ritual. I would continue eating to the point where I started praying to God. But I asked myself where is God? Why am I so alone? There nobody to heal my pain. There is no one who is willing to stay with me and fight for the Light. I kept reaching for ‘the butterfly’. All of us reach for the “butterfly” because we were never designed to go through life isolated (alone). When you are never fulfilled, nothing you get will ever be enough, not even the food that satisfies us.

I had a full-blown eating disorder and wearing thick layers of clothing to school helped me stay off the radar, but some of the teachers noticed my pale face and thought I was on drugs, but it was just malnutrition and excessive training protocols. I can still remember getting the worst pins and needles all over my body at random times of the day. My body was in shock, and I was everything but ‘healthy’. I was also enslaved to fat burners. Some of the jocks saw the pills… they gave me a fantastic nickname.

My anorexic obsession with being “leaner” got the better of me and it caused a lot more damage than what human eyes could see. Looking back now I can connect-the-dots and make sense of everything, but it was still very challenging to go through those extremes just to fit in and be accepted by “love”. However, with all the stress I chose to undertake, I still missed that A by only 3%. I was disappointed. High school wasn’t a positive experience for me. But I kept to myself and did what I had to. I made it.

You can make it too.

AN ALTERNATE REALITY

High School is over. Step into a new world.

The world we live in today is not what God had in mind, it’s grown cold inside; we turn a blind eye. When you show vulnerability or cry out for help you can get rejected, because people want good vibes. This experience makes you say less, share less, and socialize less. What’s worse is the fact that many of us numb the pain (self-medicate) to cover the scars we carry within. I did, and it destroyed my life.

I had a desire to be more than A, B, or C. But this put me under tremendous pressure (stress/anxiety). All my life I’ve been told to walk in my mother’s footsteps as a scientist and genetic freak of nature. However, I mostly felt like an emo skater kid. Depression kept me from experiencing the freedom a young man was supposed to; and living with an eating disorder took up a lot of mental real estate.

My mom gently suggested that I enrol at Stellenbosch University right after school for Biotechnology, but that did not feel like the right thing at the time as I really had no desire to study human genetics. Spending most of my time obsessing over food calories, weight-loss, and my fear of weight gain made me think that being a Registered Dietician (RD) would be a great idea. So, I enrolled and was accepted.

However, the day before my first class, I had a breakdown. Everything in me felt like it just shattered into a million little pieces. I fell to the ground in front of my grandmother and bawled my eyes out. Physically and mentally I just could not face the world. I was weak; unable to get up on my own 2 feet. I had no idea who I was, or where I belonged. Nothing I did was ever going to be enough for their love.

Here I was about to study something in healthcare because I felt like all my mom cared about was having someone to take her new baby Gknowmix (Genetic Knowledge Integration) into the future. Feeling unqualified, unable, and insecure of your ability to measure up to the expectation can leave you feeling scared and unsure of what you need to do, and this was my psychological fear conditioning.

I had no desire to understand DNA, or anything you could not touch, feel, see, or fully comprehend. Why? Well, because I was surely going to fail at that too. I was a depressed weak man lost in the dark and the voices screaming in my head were tearing me apart. Everyone else seemed to be “normal” and I was not. I was simply unable to walk with a sense of freedom and childlike wonder in my heart.

It was during this time – At 19 years of age – that I gave up trying, and for a little while I just ran away from the responsibilities this life demanded of me. You know, the arbitrary “blueprint of happiness”: Get a job, get married, become successful, have children, and if you work hard enough for 40 years, then you can retire with security in the bank. But this responsibility seemed way too daunting for me.

In 2008 I began playing World of Warcraft obsessively, just like the 12-year-old boy hiding from reality. Playing WOW is like real life (RL) in a way. There are 11 million people on servers all around the world playing together every day. It’s actually amazing when you experience the supportive community. Many of these online players are just like you and me, people who are just trying to find a new reality.

These people work dead end jobs and are treated like dogs by their boss. They come home at night, and they log into WOW to fight side by side with guys and girls just like them, and as one team they enter dungeons to kill demons, slay dragons, and outsmart ancient gods to bring peace to the people. We are called by Jesus to team up and take back the authority given to us. This is the Original Design.

Jesus said, “You will trample on snakes and scorpions.”

WOW occupied my mind and kept me from thinking of the things that were trying to break my spirit. I played a Death Knight with blood/frost specializations. My role in the guild was to lead the raids. Playing tank meant the monsters were attacking me while my team healed me and others attacked it. We had to strategize and wipe many times before we eventually brought down the beast, but WOW!

In real life (RL) I was a nobody. I had no income. I had no purpose.  No education. No calling or passion. I was just another depressed guy playing WOW. I hated the person staring back at me in the mirror. Enslaved to things that brought nothing but a desire for more; I was silently screaming out for help. But there was no one who could help me but me, and I tried… trust me I did, but I kept falling down.

World of Warcraft kept my mind from going dark as I was grinding all day for in-game achievements. I had collected all the exotic in-game pets, acquired 2x spectral tiger mounts, and over 1 million gold. The game taught me basic skills related to buying and selling on the auction house, but it also taught me how to grind for glory. However, in RL I had nothing more than a Virtual Blizzard Gaming Account.

At the end of 2008 I decided to do as I was told, and I enrolled for the degree in Biotechnology (BSc). Mom provided everything I needed to live in comfort, including my own apartment, transportation, and the freedom I requested to have access to the internet. In hindsight I can see that was a mistake. I had the freedom to play WOW on campus, and I no longer had to hide my smoking habit from them.

I would like to dedicate a part of my story to Vanri Spangenberg in remembrance of her beautiful life, even if it were only a glimpse thereof that I got to experience. I am blessed to have shared it with her. “Live fast and die young” is a fairly good way to describe her approach, and she surely lived up to it. However, what she left behind will never be replaced as her essence is forever captured in our hearts.

As soon as I moved to Stellenbosch I was out from under the watchful eye of the law, and I let go. Letting go of all the boundaries sounds like fun, and it is, but you drop the ball quite often and end up flunking out, which is costly for all parties involved. I went to the streets of Stellenbosch with my skateboard and within a week I had made some friends who were just as carefree and crazy as me.

Then I met Vanri Spangenberg, and everything changed. Me and Vanri hit it off from the moment we laid eyes on each other. She even stayed in the same apartment block, just a flight of stairs from me. Needless to say, it wasn’t long before she moved in with me because we both felt that magnetic love. We were like two in-love uni-students who found their twin flame and the sparks ignited everything.

You know when you grow up in a typical South African household, there are a few boxes you have to tick before you can be seen as suitable marriage material, and according to my mother and father, Vanri ticked all of them. The words “plat op die aarde”, which means “to be grounded” is what makes you “Lekker”, and the energy Vanri brought to any room had the power to change the atmosphere.

I think that’s part of why I loved her so much. Unknowingly she brought light to my darkness, and she was a shining rock on which I could stand when I felt storms raging inside. She loved and chose me, even thought she had no idea of the pain I was still carrying. As a result of the black dog in the corner of my mind, she had to experience that presence at some point, and she did, when I lost control again.

Slowly but surely all the nights out drinking and eating junk triggered a spirit of depression to fill me, and the day I received my semester results I shattered all over again. Disappointed with what I was going to tell my parents. I failed them and relapsed into a place of despair, filled with doubt and fear. I reached for WOW to escape the shame and guilt of what I had done. I had gone from an 77% average to barely knowing anything because I wanted to have a good time. I was distracted by “the butterfly”.

Depression will keep you down if you allow it to weaken your will to thrive. I remember how Vanri tried to get me to go out and party with her, but I shut her out and kept on playing WOW in the dark. When you are filled with so much shame that you hide away from people, then you become isolated and an easy target for these agents of despair to slowly kill you from within. This continued until she found me bleeding on the floor. Then she packed her bags and left me there. She did not understand.

This was the straw that broke the camels back.

Vanri left the University and moved to Bloemfontein where she continued her sport science degree. At the time I was angry and rejected, and that’s why I gave up trying. I stopped going to class and stayed in my bachelor’s pad playing games all day, binge eating often, starving myself to lose weight, and just repeating a cycle of self-destruction while escaping in an alternate reality game like WOW.

My mother eventually had to know, and she understood, even if it probably killed her on the inside. Supporting an addict with emotional disturbances and anger outburst is the most challenging task any parent can be presented with. Many just give up and walk away hoping that God will intervene at some point. Losing hope is normal, and no one will ever judge you for it if they were in your shoes.

At the end of 2009 my parents showed up at my apartment in what felt like an all-out intervention. Then they started looking for solutions to cure this mental health condition called clinical depression. The spirit of depression can have such a profound impact on the people around the host that those individuals start losing hope. It’s important to stay grounded in “Something Higher” than this reality.

GET BACK UP AND WALK

There is nothing wrong with seeing a therapist to help you work through trauma and pain. However, when dealing with an adolescent it can seem like “rehabilitation” and not “treatment” for their state. My mom took me to see a psychologist, then a hypnotherapist, and finally this crazy lady from church. She looked into my eyes, took my hands, and then she started praying in a strange sounding tongue. She commanded me to open my mouth and speak, and I did. Gibberish… This lady had lost her mind.

Psychology is a very interesting field of study. The human mind is a very interesting thing and what intrigues me is our ability to act on what we believe, even if what we believe might not even be true. The mind has the capacity to make us experience things that can affect every other area of our being. Just think about what happens when you experience a phobia for something, your body produces a series of catecholamines that prepare you for fight-flight-freeze. The fear is really all inside your head.

After visiting the Christian lady who prayed for me, things at home got out of hand with my emotional disturbances and my father lost it. You see the older generation of men, the men who were drafted by the army, they were raised with a firm hand. I like to call it tough love, because it made them harder and tougher than any man should have to be, but in those days, it was necessary for men to be strong. My father called me a “Moffie” for crying, and when I stood up for myself, he physically attacked me.

I yelled at my father, “I hate you!”, and thereafter extreme measures were taken by both my parents. They admitted me into a mental health clinic, and I can understand why. I mean this has been going on for long enough. In this stress management therapy centre I met other people. The funny thing is, I looked like the normal one, or I thought so… Upon departure the receptionist gave me a joint (herb), and I smoked that joint. I don’t know if the herb changed my brain chemistry, but something changed.

I decided to toss the Prozac, I started skateboarding again, and I sold my WOW account for R5000. Taking a heroic leap forward means you burn the things that were holding you back. I got back up and registered for a program in Business Management at The University of Stellenbosch Business School. My father saw an advert in the newspaper and recommended I do this to at least get something done. I enrolled not because I wanted to, but rather because it seemed like the only option I had at the time.

This became a space where I started socializing again with people my age in real life. Going to class was a joy because I could skate there and back, which I guess was the highlight of my day. It was also a way for me to stay active as I had to walk uphill to class, but the downhill section made it worth it. Adrenaline junkie, that’s what I am, but aren’t all of us? We all want the “feel-good-vibes” of life. Exercise makes us feel alive, friendships make us feel loved, food makes us feel good, and so do drugs.

I was still smoking about 1 pack of cigarettes every day, but at least I was trying to get back up again. World of Warcraft was also one of those addictive habits you really struggle to shake off, especially if your brother is still busy slaying dragons and cleansing temples in-game. I eventually gave into the temptation and made a new WOW gaming account with a blood elf death knight called “Lieweheksie”. So, needles to say my attention really wasn’t on the class curriculum. It’s a sad reality I was living in.

At the end of the program, we had to present a profitable business plan. At first, I put together an idea that was purely based on my emotional state. I wanted to start a mental health organization to help students with depression. I wanted to have small groups meet up weekly to support those who feel alone, weak, and emotionally unstable. I guess in a way I wanted to create a solution for my own pain. Feeling rejected by the world, forgotten by your friends, and isolated from your family slowly kills you.

Two weeks before my presentation I had a relapse. My mother had to contact the Student Psychologist to get me out of my bedroom as I wanted to quit. I did not value myself, and I did not believe in myself.  It’s heart wrenching for a parent to see their child like that; and thinking back now it’s really sad to consider how weak I was as a man. But it was inevitable. The way my father raised me created the perfect “storm” for a performance-based perfectionist who could not accept his best as good enough.

I trashed my “love project” because I realized there would be no profit, as it was never meant to be for profit, so I changed my idea. I was going to start a small IT company that builds websites for clients. Simple, yet effective. It was worth a 50% mark. I passed by God’s grace and then I said to my mother, “You can go fetch your certificate.” You can see why they had a hard time with me. I was rebellious and bitter towards the world and everyone in it. But in reality it’s because deep down I hated myself.

You cannot love other people if you do not love yourself. I hated the person staring back at me in the bathroom mirror. I actually smashed the mirror with my head out of pure anger for my mental state. Insomnia, depression, loneliness, binge eating, poverty, low EQ, ADHD, and all of these crazy things will push you to the edge of insanity, and that is why thousands of sad people take the easy way out. I would have taken the easy way out, but the thought of what would happen to my mother saved me.

I was stuck and it felt like nothing I did was ever going to change that. I was bound in my own suffering. I hated the fact that people were allowed to see me when I was at my weakest, vulnerable. I wanted to be locked away in my room and be forgotten by people, but there was always some angel watching over me to help me get back up, and I did, I kept trying. Getting back up is hard, but there is nothing so satisfying as seeing the progress you are making, even if the progress is slow. You are seeing change.

You know that in my final presentation I started talking about my battle with depression and the initial idea that I had. But little did I know there were others sitting there listening who were also suffering. That presentation gave me a lousy mark, but it was enough to pass the test. That is what grace is all about, “not by might, nor by power, but by the Grace of God. He is not concerned with your strength or ability, but He is concerned with the condition of your heart, and He wants to restore you to glory.

My battle is far from over, and so is yours. We will continue fighting the resistance we face in this god-forsaken world until the day we die, but when we lay down our lives for something greater we will see the heritage we leave behind. My story and testimony is something I can leave behind just like Jesus Christ did through the spirit-filled Word of God. Back then I did not know God, but He knew me and He allowed me to bleed so others could be healed. Jesus did the same thing that we may know Him.

THE GREAT TEMPTATION

So now you kind of have an idea of how my personality was shaped. I was a good kid, but I desired love like you wouldn’t even imagine. The thing is, my parents did not speak my love language and that’s one of the reasons why I asked my mother for a friend, which turned out to be my brother. Reaching for the butterfly seemed to be a recurring event in my life as I desperately sought love.

The following year I took the next step to further my education with a diploma in graphic and web. After presenting my idea to start an IT Client Company, and the fact that I was playing WOW again, the decision was quite clear. I had to get a qualification in graphic and web design, and my mother supported my decision, paid the intuition fees, and I was registered to start at the Academy (2011).

This year felt different, and I quickly made friends and socialized again as my life-long best friend moved back from Gauteng to finish his thesis in Cape Town with my mother as his promoter. He did a study to determine the genetic components that seem to play a role in the correlation between cannabis and schizophrenia. But there was a problem, together we found refuge at the bar again.

I just turned 21, and we were partying like that’s all we could do. We became besties with the flair-tender, Jason, who happened to be in class with me – He worked at Eastwoods part time to fund his studies and have some spending money. At least 3 nights a week we would close the bar with him and then head to Buckley’s to drink and play Foosball until 4am. Our studies were not a priority.

I remember waking up before an exam one morning. I had a hangover and was shivering in my bed. “Where is my duvet?” I thought to myself. When I realized I was going to be late, I leaped out of bed and found my duvet piled up on the floor. When I picked it up, I realized there was something inside. It was the chunks of banana bread and cheese that I ate after returning home drunk late last night.

Binge eating and depression was still there, and the booze didn’t help either. As the year passed by, we continued going out, and I continued reaching for the butterfly. I was rejected for being skinny, and the butterfly chose to be with the “bad boy”, so I decided to change. I no longer wanted to be the “nice guy”. I wanted to feel loved, and if that meant I had to change, then that’s what I’d do.

I didn’t want to be skinny. So, I joined the gym with Dirk, and we started lifting. We kept each other accountable, and I recall a few sessions where we were still smelling like booze. Straight after every session I would light up and smoke on the sidewalk. Dirk could never understand how I managed to, but I guess I’ve got lungs of steel like my dad. It’s great to have a training partner who can push you.

At some point during my fitness journey – Probably like 4 months in – I became serious about my gains, and I stumbled upon some of the greatest prep coaches of all time. My mission every day was to learn as much as I could from guys like Lyle McDonald, Alan Aragon, and Layne Norton to name but a few. The more I learned, and the more I applied what I learned, the better the results were.

This bodybuilding lifestyle and transformative journey became addictive. It’s like a new drug I was chasing every day – Progression – and it was pushing my bad habits out the back door. Smoking was the first one to go, but I had some help with the right motivation. My father was diagnosed with lung cancer, and we made a pact to quit smoking together. In only 7 days I was done with fags (ent’tjies).

During this time my mother received a packed of 30 canna-caps at work to give to my dad during his chemotherapy. The THC/CBD must have done something to his brain chemistry because he started having the most intense and vivid dreams. The dreams drove so much fear into him that he hates anything related to cannabis, and he started smoking again. I was quite disappointed to be honest.

I was about the finish my first year of the graphic and web design and then I met a stunning girl who asked me if I could train her – because my results showed. I wasn’t a qualified PT, and so we agreed to do it on unprofessional terms. I slept over at her place once or twice, and then I developed strong feelings for this girl. But she wasn’t ready for more, as she was still healing from a past relationship.

Jan Jan Jan. Let the butterfly go… Instead of accepting her proposal to continue being what we were, “good friends”, I got angry and told her I wanted nothing from her if I can’t have her, and so I walked away like a big boy who’s having a fit. It’s quite amusing looking back at your own life. You realise how much of a fool you were for only seeing what you wanted to. Jan Jan Jan. Let the butterfly go.

Thereafter I just became more obsessed with building the perfect aesthetic physique like Jeff Seid. Transforming your body like this requires tremendous amounts of focused discipline and that is why bodybuilding is a lifestyle. You have to eat, sleep, and think like a bodybuilder. If your body is not recovering, you’re training. Going to the gym twice a day is like an exciting event you boast with.

About 7 months later people noticed the changes and the same girls who rejected me grabbed my arms and asked me what I did. It felt good. It felt really good. What’s more, the guys at class and even those who knew me on Facebook made contact with me, asking me to help them shape up. Helping people in this capacity brought great joy to my heart and I lost interest in web design.

One morning I went up to my mom and said, “I want to be a personal trainer.” Her face said it all. Anyone would respond like that… You have barely finished the graphic and web design diploma, and now you want to jump into the next thing? “Finish what you started” is what she said to me, but do you think I listened? No, I wanted it my way, and I wanted it now… At least I got the certification.

You see an adolescent mind cannot think with wisdom and patience and self-control, because when you are still a worm, and all you do is consume, then you will continue to bite off more than you are ready to handle, and it will cause a lot of pain and anxiety in your life. Trust me I got the certification.

THIS IS GOING TO BE TOUGH

– for you and for me.

It’s funny how life works out, and how we don’t necessarily have to have it all figured out just yet. Eventually my mother gave in as she took note of my dedication. Bodybuilding was an idol in my life. My mind became saturated with all things related to the bodybuilding lifestyle. I tracked everything.

Becoming a Personal Trainer was a no-brainer because I could train all day and get paid for doing so.

She paid for the strength & conditioning course and 1 year later I was a qualified PT working at a local health club. In only 7 months of working as a new PT I was blessed with a full roster of clients. The money was good, and I had the freedom to move into my place with the ‘model’ I met online, or perhaps I should rephrase that as she found me, inviting me to satisfy her “SD” (Sexual Deprivation).

Now this girl I met; she really wasn’t good for me. You see, she found me while I was still studying to become a PT. She called me out to have a one-night stand with her by using provocative photos to get my attention. To be honest I wasn’t really that fond of her looks. She had one of those unique model looks with very strong features. But I took bait and made a big mistake as you will learn.

Shortly after our one night stand she boarded the plane to India. She was a dancer at the IPL Cricket. The week before she left, she made me feel so bad for sleeping with her, and for not asking her out. She basically manipulated me to the point where I asked her to “be mine”. So please, do understand, deep inside there was still this ‘nice guy’ with a longing for love, and I guess she bargained on that.

When she returned from India, she used most of the money she had made to furnish her apartment, set up the wi-fi, and stock her fridge with food. She was one of those artsy ballerina models who had no need for material comfort. Then she invited me to move in with her, and I took the opportunity. You see I really hated living under the watchful eye of the law, with my father, and so I ran away.

I didn’t even tell my parents I was moving out. I just packed everything and left. Only a few days later did I inform them that I had moved in with her. My father did not respond, and my mother did what she always does and tried to support my happiness. I regret these mistakes, and I wish my story can help someone from making the same mistakes, but would I change my experience? No, I wouldn’t.

We had sex like spider monkeys. We even made an XXX tape that was so hot we used it as foreplay. All of us have been born with a desire for intimacy and partnership just like the penguins and crows. Having someone to gym with, cook with, drink with, dance with, sleep with, and wake up to is great. Slowly over time I learned to love her, and she always made an effort to help me prepare for my day.

She said things like, “I see you and I am invested in you.” But you know what happened?The money I was making, and the muscles I was showcasing, they corrupted the ‘nice guy’ in me, and I became an absolute douche who hoarded money and emotionally cheated on his lady. We had many fights and I chased her away many times, yet she kept coming back to me. I started thinking I could have more.

When you’re not satisfied with what you have, and you’re always reaching for more (lack mentality), then you will eventually be tempted to reach for that forbidden fruit that leads to destruction of self.

Steroids stepped into the picture after I placed last at my first show. I never thought I would be the one injecting illegal substances into my body with the potential for adverse side effects, but I did.

Doing so seared my conscious mind and over time it became okay. I remember taking Clenbuterol to get lean as fast as possible. Clen has a massive impact on your heart, and you can actually see how you shake once you take it. It’s not healthy for you at all! Yet, I took it because I became lazy in my spirit and the drugs felt like a shortcut to success, and so my disciplined mind let go of excellence.

My girlfriend also transformed her body as she was training with me, and then she decided to step into the female bikini line-up, and that was the end of that. The stage brought life to her personality, and she could shine, but did I support her in this? I would like to think I supported her, but if I think back now I really didn’t. I could have done more. She basically prepped herself with everything she learned from listening to me. All I could talk about all day was macros, training, and conditioning.

It’s sad to think about this. I was so lost and blind. I was unable to see that this strong and able woman decided to choose me because she saw that in me was someone strong and able, but she also saw that this boy needed a lot of love and words of affirmation. That’s why she stuck with me even if I chased her away. I could not even love myself as I am. I was a broken man in need of love.

The performance love mindset, the expectation of rejection, the self-doubt, and the shame of my demons (depression) pushed me past failure. My training sessions were fuelled by anger and desire. There were many times where I lost my temper and broke things in the apartment, and it scared her. It was not going well between us, and then I got horrible news. Vanri died in a car accident last night.

I was so lost in my pursuit of satisfaction, success, whatever the hell you want to call it, that I just continued going down the same destructive path. More clen, more anavar, test, t3, and cannabis. The saddest part of it all is the fact that I was eating junk food almost every day, and it showed on my skin and in my face. I became puffy with backne (back acne), and I lost touch with my reality.

I still remember the one fight where she pushed my buttons, and in a single moment I just lost my mind and smashed the hairdryer into smithereens! Then I smashed my head through the mirror. Crazy right? I could no longer take the disrespectful way in which she spoke to me. Her words changed what I believed about myself. I was a piece of ___. Then I became what she feared.

I acted on my desire for more, and I approached Tamryn, the gymnast. Her father worked with me, she was about 20 and fine as hell. We started talking, we exchanged numbers, and then I met her on the dancefloor. The moment I saw her dancing I realized this girl was available to everyone. I was turned off, so I turned around and walked away. I returned home to where I had a good thing.

This caused havoc in our relationship. Then one afternoon while I was waiting for my next client a bearded man with sandals walks into the gym and he waves at me from opposite the turnstile. First, I thought he must be waving at someone else, so I turned my attention back to the girl next to me, but when I looked up, he was still waving. So, I waved back at him, and he invited me to come over.

I walked over to him, and he asked me if he can have a moment of my time. “Sure”, and then Hecontinued, “I walked by, and God told me to come in and tell you He has a great plan for your life.” In that moment I felt a jolt of joy shooting through my heart. He asked me if he could pray for me, then he invited me to a church for fellowship. He left and I’ve never seen him again. Crazy right?

But my problems at home did not stop there. In an attempt to save my relationship, I asked her to marry me! I think that’s crazier that seeing Jesus Christ from the kiddies bible walking into the gym. She said yes and we planned a wedding. Working all day gave me a valid excuse to be tired, and my participation in the wedding plans bothered her tremendously. The heat just kept rising and rising.

The day of the wedding arrived, and all the guests were invited, everyone paid for their plane tickets to Magaliesburg, and then Jan decided he could not go through with it. It felt like that day before my first class at Stellenbosch.  I was living a lie. I was acting as if I had it all figured out, but I was a mess on the inside, and it showed. She showed up dressed in black, and I had a relapse hiding at home.

That night I got high, and I came to the conclusion that I’ve had nothing, and I’ve had everything. Considering the fact that I was once emo, cutting my wrists to feel something, and now I’m a fake, with more money in his bank account than any young man needs. Yet still, I was so incomplete, and living this lie was killing me; so I might as well end it here. I’ve experienced everything and I hate it.

It was in this moment that someone sent me a text message to see how I was doing, and then they invited me to join them at church the next morning. Do you know why I went? Because the one who sent the text was the same girl I wanted more from at the Design Academy. That’s why I went… Sick. Doesn’t matter, the fact remains, that Sunday morning in church God spoke to me, and it cut deep.

I raised my hands. Jesus, have your way in me. I repent. This is Your opportunity. I submit to You. Show me that you are alive, and show me that you are God, and show me that there is more to life. God please if you are who you say you are. Help me because I need to believe that there is more. That’s when my life changed. It was the doorway I stepped through as I offered my heart to Him.

I stepped out in faith, even if there were screams of doubt in me. I kept telling myself that what I experienced was real to me, and it cut me, and it affected, and it infected me. That is why I chose to believe there is a God who will reach down when we are at our very end. He is the One who is called the resurrection for a reason. Because as He rose Christ from the dead, He will also give life to you.

He did for me, and that’s why I believe.

GOD OPENED MY EYES TO SEE

It was tough growing up with this deep longing for love and affection; I kept reaching for the dam butterfly. This led to rejection and temptation. My grandmother always said, “vroeg ryp vroeg vrot”. Which simply means if you are tempted to eat of the forbidden fruits early in life [when it’s not the right time], then you will get spoilt [rotten]. It happened to me and also to so many others like me.

That’s why divorce rates are so high; it’s a spiritual warzone, and we have grown oblivious of this. How is it even possible for two people who love each other, who are committed to serve, cherish, and support each other [through richer and poorer, health and sickness], then hate each other so? Fighting an unseen war is not as simple as reacting to what we understand from our perspective.

You see, it wasn’t until after we broke up and I got baptized that God opened my eyes and showed me what was really going on. My ex-fiancé was under the influence of a spirit, and she was unaware of it. This spirit latched onto her as a child when she was raped by her father’s friend and then by her boyfriend. This opened a door for the enemy to come in and have his way. She became a seductress.

I tied my soul to a girl who seduced, manipulated, belittled, and bewitched me. She even confessed to being a compulsive liar who rehearsed her day every night to make sure she stays up to date with her own lies. I think the straw that broke the camels back was when she posted full nude photos of herself all over the internet and called it art. My parents saw them; it was quite a shameful event.  

The idea of spiritual warfare, which I try to not think about, is not a positive one, yet it’s a reality. This became the most evident for me the night I walked through our apartment renouncing and announcing Words from a piece of paper. It was a cleansing prayer I received, and when I finished the prayer, I was standing in her bedroom and I asked a question that unlocked all those footholds.

Samara Hayden”, she exclaimed! “Samara Hayden is the key! It’s been my password all this time and now I understand why”. She pulled out a black book with red trimming and on the cover was written, “Samara Hayden, the Devil’s Guardian”. Inside this book was a story of lucifer’s daughter, and it foretold of a boy who was pulled into darkness by Samara, and then he saved her from hell.

There were demonic names written in this book, and it wasn’t something you’d want in your home, and so at midnight I lit a fire and burned the book. The moment the pages caught fire, all the lights in our apartment, even the fairy lights on the balcony (on batteries), started flickering. Green and blue flames rose from those pages and I experienced something out of this world. It was supernatural.

The next morning during my time with God I received a scripture about cleaning and filling a house. Jesus was teaching his disciples what happens when a demonic entity leaves your body [the vessel]. He said the spirit would go away for a few days, and find no where to stay, and so it would gather other spirits who are stronger and return to the house it came from. This was a warning for me.

I had no idea what I was getting myself into, and I had no idea how to handle the situation as I was kind of thrown into the deep end. My ex came home from work saying how wonderful she feels and how she is so grateful towards me for helping her get freedom. But then, the next morning she was so depressed, and so suicidal that I had to take her car keys. We then sought help from the church.

She was baptized and filled with the Holy Ghost. We have both made peace with the beautiful part we could play in each other’s lives. She understands and has apologized for her part, and so have I. God even forced us to stay in the same apartment for 3 months so we could learn to forgive. She is now happily married to a good-looking man with whom she has a beautiful boy. To Happy Endings!

You see it’s all connected. Everything that takes place in your life is like the butterfly effect that God has orchestrated before the beginning of time to give us a life worth living, and even more than that, a good reason to seek healing. God designed us to be intimate with Him, but we walked away when we chose to seek pleasurable things above peace with Him. AND then we try to hide away in shame.

Covering ourselves in darkness [masking] is what we naturally do when we try to hide from others. Even God does this. Just look at what the scripture says, “He made the darkness his hiding place, the dark rain clouds his covering [Psalm 18:11; 2 Samuel 22:12]”. It’s okay to share your pain and story.God shares His story through the Bible and the books that Jesus still writes through our testimonies.

When we are depressed by the world around us, we will try to hide away in darkness, but God will come and fetch you there if you are ready to submit to His Holy Sacred Almighty Name: Christ Jesus. He opened my eyes and showed me there was more to life. We are here to serve and sacrifice our lives for the ones we love, even for the life of our enemy. Freely we HAVE received, and freely we give.

—-

For this is what the LORD says: “When the time comes, I will attend to you and confirm My promise to restore you. For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you a future and a hope. Call on Me and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.

You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will restore you from captivity and slavery. Because you may say, “The LORD has raised up for us prophets,” this is what the LORD says about the king who sits on the throne and the people who did not go into exile.

This is what the LORD of Hosts says:

“I will send sword, famine, and plague against them, and I will make them all like rotten figs. I will pursue them, and I will make them a horror to all the kingdoms of the earth—a curse, a desolation, and an object of scorn.  I will do this because they have not listened to My words, declares the LORD.

God has already warned us, and we all know the 11th hour is at hand. Get Baptized. Get Filled. Get Refined by the Spirit of Christ. When God is the strongman of your vessel [body]. Well my friends, you will become uncorruptible by nature. God says in His Word “that which I purify stays pure.”

Rise, it’s your time to shine. As it is written, “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the promised heritage of all the servants of the LORD, and their righteousness is of Me, so saith the LORD GOD.”

EVERYTHING THAT HAS A BEGINNING HAS AN END.

This will be the final instalment of my metamorphosis story, but it’s only the beginning of our journey together. Once you willingly submit to Christ as head of the body, and you give God the controller to your heart, then you will see life in a new way. He will teach you to embrace resistance in order to grow stronger. His Spirit will help you to deny the animal nature, the consumer who reaches for more.

There is a very special scripture that reads, “Everyone born of the Holy Spirit is led by the Spirit of God.” Walking with the Spirit of God is not a walk in the park, it’s a walk through the wilderness (pilgrimage). That is why Moses had to walk through the wilderness with God’s people for 40 years; to be refined. You see God will not allow you to enter into the Promise until you have been sanctified and purified.

As it is written, “Brothers and Sisters, count it all joy when you must face these trials, for you know the testing of your faith produces strength. And let the strength you gain have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask it from God, who gives generously TO ALL without reproach, and it will be given him.” – James 1

Why would anyone willing put themselves into a season of discomfort? Well, why would anyone want to join a gym to sweat and “feel the burn”? The reward of course. It’s for a feeling of strength and health, and everything that comes with the sacrifices you had to make to change your lifestyle. The same is true for the season of refinement God’s Spirit leads us through. It matures us as people.

I’ve made so many foolish mistakes, and I’ve allowed lust and greed, the need to exist, to have, and to look like I have it all figured out, to corrupt me. It drove me to the edge of insanity where suicide seemed like the only good option left. But God reached down, and He pulled me from the pits of hell. He opened my eyes and then He asked me to follow Him, and to trust Him. I did, and He restored me.

God blessed me with a great heritage after I was baptized. An investigation was launched after 3 emails were discovered that proved foul play from the directors of GeneCare, the baby girl (company) my mother lost after her own people crucified her and “killed her child”. They ripped her heart out, and stepped on it, and that’s where my depression started. I witness my mother’s suffering every day.

Her students were found guilty of being malicious directors and they were each sued for R1 million. The company was “revived”, and all the shares, IP, and contracts were given back to our family, but my mother could no longer sign as director as she was working for the National Laboratories, and it would be a conflict of interest. So, I signed as I knew what GeneCare meant to her. I am now the CEO.

God gave me an amazing vision whereby I can use my talents (design, gaming, fitness) to build a tool that could be used to commercialize Gknowmix.com research and the genetic pre-screen risk reports. It would be a fitness app that can be used as a health management system with a gamified component, and in of itself it’s nothing novel, but with the PSGT-algorithms owned by Gknowmix, it’s very valuable.

Around February 2017 my attention was directed to that scene from “The Dark Knight Rises” where Batman (Christian Bale) must escape the prison, and in order for him to make his leap of faith, he must remove the safety rope and jump. God was speaking to me, and I had to do the same thing, and jump. So, I resigned as a Personal Trainer and went all in. I was naïve… I thought God would just bless me.

I wrote “the business plan” for GeneCare, and I decided to see an investor in Cape Town. He told me to get my head out of the clouds, and to start with a prototype. I went back to the drawing board and I made some changes. Then I had the opportunity to connect with a Christian businessman in Paarl, and it did not go as I planned it. He called me the white baboon, but that’s a story for another day.

As you can see, I ran with it. I eventually joined a group of 12 young entrepreneurs in digital healthcare. The accelerator program invested in our ideas, and they connected us with big stakeholders in the South African Healthcare Industry. Week after week my confidence grew, but despite my best efforts, no one wanted to invest in my app idea as predictive preventative medicine is not what they wanted.

God stopped my worried mind one afternoon during prayer and He simply said, “I want you to stop looking at what you can get, and I want you to build a place where my Name can be exalted, and I will exalt you and establish your house.” I got the idea of mixing Bodybuilding and Christ, as the word Body Building carried a deeper meaning than the vanity-based ideologies of the world. It’s a loaded word.

Bodybuilding for Christ is the “house” I’ve decided to build for God, and He has blessed me with this as a means to fill my heart, heal me from the past, and saturate my mind with His Words. He was the One to teach me what it means to apply excellence in everything you do. Leave no stone unturned. When you become a servant of God, and you ask, “Increase my capacity”, He will surely give you more.

The way my mind works, and this is merely how I experience cause and effect, is that if I can see and believe a future eutopia for myself and my family, and I understand it will require of me to be someone I am currently not, but have the potential to be, then I must start to see myself as that person is, to think like that person, and act like that person, that I may become that person in 10 years from now.

I’ve decided to give myself 10 years to become the CEO of GeneCare, and in this time I will build for God, and He will build me. The process of building the Bodybuilding for Christ platform has changed me [in a good way], and God taught me what tough love is all about. God is not mocked, and we will reap what we sow. This is only the beginning for you and me. Follow my journey. See what God does.

There is a lot of water under the bridge between me and Jesus. He has taken me through the initiation to teach me, strengthen me, and refine me. You see, to purify gold you must heat it until it liquifies. God did this with me in a 4-year season. I kept reaching for the ** butterfly, even after I was baptized… The sin was rooted so deep in my soul that it had to be burned right out of me, and it was challenging.

Sharing my testimony and story is the final step towards my own healing. It feels like I’m tearing the past right out of me. I will likely print all these pages and burn them this weekend. It’s just a way of saying “I release it” and “I am set free”. You should try it. Clean everything that keeps you stuck in the past, stuck in the same place with a lack mentality and orphan mindset. We have been called to thrive.

I’ve decided to share all the smaller testimonies, miracles, answered prayers, [and all those things that God used to build trust and intimacy between us], on YouTube and during the live training sessions that will be starting next week. My desire is simply to inspire you to get moving, and if you use my programs and support my mission, well, then I’ll be happy. I’ve put in the work, now it’s your turn.

Thank you for reading my story. 🦋

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