*The images in this specific piece are granted copyright privilege by: Public Domain, CCSAL, GNU Free Documentation Licenses, Fair Use Under The United States Copyright Law, or given copyright privilege by the copyright holder which is identified beneath the individual photo.
**Some of the links will have to be copied and then posted in your search engine in order to pull up properly
***The CRC Blog welcomes submissions from individuals of all different faiths and philosophies to share their own stories. Contact CRC Blog via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or personal Facebook messaging at https://www.facebook.com/car.cooper.7
Guest Blog Post by Pastor Christopher Visagie from Durban, South Africa
I was raised in a place called Wentworth which is one of the suburbs in Durban, South Africa. I’m the eldest of four siblings. We are three brothers and one sister. My dad was a postman working for the General post office and my mom was a housewife. We lived in a block of flats with six apartments, having two apartments on each level. Those flats were designed with the front doors of the apartments on each level facing each other. My father’s family lived in the apartment opposite ours. There was hardly any privacy because of the way these apartments were designed. Not only did the apartment doors face each other, but each flat was also close up against each other. The way they were structured was frustrating enough, let alone the fact that we were living in a so-called coloured area. Those were the days of the apartheid regime.
Being a so-called coloured living in a coloured community that was known for drug abuse, alcohol abuse and violence both domestic and gang-related violence was one of the worst environments to be raised in. My father’s family already had a reputation for being violent. Listening to the stories that my mother told of the Visagie family, it was obvious that violence was passed down from generation to generation through the bloodline. It seemed inevitable that I became who I was.
Growing up in such an environment where my uncles were never a good example, encouraging me to stand up for my self. I was constantly in fight with peers from as far back as grade one. Almost every week I was taking trouble home with me. Looking back, I know now that I was being groomed by the devil.
Looking at our home environment, the abuse took its tole in awarding us with a fair share of its influence. It was strange if there were no arguments between my parents for one day. They argued every single day. At least twice a week argument turned violent. Arguments ranged from a crease in my father’s work uniform to accusations of infidelity. When arguments turned violent, you would swear that my father hated my mother for reasons unknown. When you talk about a man possessed with a spirit of violence, my father is the first that comes to mind. We were traumatized by his behavior. It happened so often that it was normalized within our family circle and close community. In those days family violence wasn’t as sensitive as it is today.
While growing up, there was a certain experience that seemed to play over and over in my mind. It was a violent experience without any specified detail. All I could remember was my mother screaming and I was pushed up into a corner behind her. On a certain day, she was talking to someone and this story surfaced. She was explaining how ant the age of two I hit my father with my little hands in an attempt to protect her. Without a second thought, my father who was supposed to protect me booted me. In those days the type of footwear that my father wore to work had a metal toe-cap. After he booted me, my mother grabbed me, backed me up in the corner to protect me and received every blow from her violent abuser. My mother is a tiny woman. Image a tiny woman bracing herself in a corner, protecting her two-year-old baby who felt it right to attempt to protect his mom from her violent abuser. That mental trauma of that experience haunted me for a long time. That devil that possessed my father wanted me dead.
Years later, my father managed to get a government subsidy to purchase a house. We changed locations, but those devils moved in with us. When we thought things would get better, things quickly deteriorated. My mother took up the courage to protect herself from the abuse by taking up a weapon. Every time he hit her she broke the bottom end of a bottle, grabbed a knife or whatever else she could get out of desperation and she used it. We were forced to grow up in such an environment. By this time I was suicidal and attempted to end my life on more than one occasion. I was full of hatred and violence to the extent that I almost killed my own father by stabbing him repeatedly. All I wanted to do was to die.
About this same period, my granny on my father’s side was exposed for using witchcraft in an attempt to break up my parent’s marriage. The logic behind it was she felt that her son should be supporting her instead of supporting his own family. When this story surfaced, it was as though hell was let loose. Everything that could go wrong went wrong. Many nights we slept in the streets because we were kicked out of a place we called home. With all this going on, a work colleague of my father advised him to consult a witch doctor. We all had to take part in a ritual in an attempt to be cleaned of this curse that plagued us. I’m not sure how much my father paid that witch doctor, but whatever he did never worked. After a while, my mother lost her mind to witchcraft. She started hallucinating. She sat flat on the floor in the lounge corner, talking to little short men that she alone could see. Our only hope to survive was ripped away from us. I can’t explain the emotional strain that we endured as children.
All we did was cry until the tears dried up. This went on for a few days. She was eventually taken away by her eldest sister for someone to pray for her and her sanity was restored. I have no clarity in where they took her or who prayed for her, all I remember is she was back to her senses.
Beside her episode, I’ve had many episodes where I came under the attack of devils. I was hearing things, seeing things move and feeling the presence of evil all the time. I was also becoming more and more violent as time past. I’ll never forget the day when I dared my best friend just to start a fight. When he refused to respond, I stabbed him to provoke him. The devil had me on my way to hell.
The situation eventually deteriorated to the point that my father spent more money on alcohol than he spent on his own kids. At times we had to ask neighbors for sugar to make a glass of sugar water to relieve the dryness of the bread we ate. It came to a point where, if you got up too late that morning, you might go hungry the whole day. Living under such conditions, my mother was forced to start an illegal business. She attempted to find a job but employment was hard to come by. She started selling alcohol without a license. Doing that in an attempt to survive, it caused the situation to worsen. Now we were attracting all types of ugly people. By this time she also turned to alcohol for relief. Having one parent drinking was bad enough, but both parents drinking just escalated what we thought was bad. Things were out of control. The devil was running a racket in our home and we could do nothing about it.
Remember that where chaos reigns, corruption rules. When corrupt people saw an opportunity to take advantage, I had to stand up and protect myself. From defending myself at the age of 14, I also started inflicting harm. Violence begets violence.
Here's the irony. My parents were born again at one time in their lives. They backslid and attempted restoration a few times, but they failed. The God of Christianity that was introduced to me was a weak God who helps nobody. We were taught to pray, but there was no answer from a God we were told loved us. We were stuck in a situation of hopelessness, having no family or friends who offered to help remedy the situation. My parents tried pastors and social workers, but things just seemed to deteriorate. By this time, my life was a mess. At the age of fourteen, being the eldest I was helpless. Because I increased the already existing problems my mother had she kicked me out of the house. I had to grow up quickly. By this time I had already moved away from believing in the existence of God.
At the age of sixteen, I moved in with my girlfriend who is now my wife, Pastor Elaine Brenda Visagie (Below Left). I never knew that she was backslidden when I met her. I never really bothered anyway, because I converted to atheism. I was always found debating the existence of God with friends and family. My foundations were set and I believed that nobody could change that. I collected enough evidence to discredit God who I believed was a figment of the imagination that acted as a crutch for the weak.
After a few years of dating, my girlfriend decided to go back to church. When that happened I attempted to get her into an argument to change her mindset that I thought was corrupted by religion. At this juncture of my life, I was so into what I believed, I started demonstrating the power of the mind and mind control. There’s no way that I was ready to be deceived into following a God that I thought did not exist. I was stuck and the devils thought he had me. The truth is, the devil was grooming me to serve him. While all this was going on, for some reason I started hating where I was in my life and started desiring change. I hated the person I became but had no power to change who I was. I convinced myself that I was on the right track, but could never find comfort in the part I chose. All I longed for was peace. There was a time that I broke down in tears because I was stuck, yet I was one who never cried. My heart was too hard to share tears. A war started in me. I attempted to restrain the emotional breakdown I was having. I hated that I started feeling weak.
A little while after my girlfriend started going to church, she invited me. I was dead set on not going with her. I felt that going to church was a waste of time. The first time I agreed to go was when I got up that Sunday morning with a bad hangover. The night before, I spent all the money I had on alcohol. I knew that she had money, so I asked her to buy me two beers to cure my hangover. The term we used for a hangover in those days was babilas or babi. She told me that if I wanted money for two beers, I must join her in church. She already complained previously about me not joining her. I thought to myself that it won’t hurt if I sat in church for two hours to please her, get the money, then go sit with my friends, having two beers to put on the table. I was too proud to go empty-handed.
When we got to church, I sat at the back. I refused to be a part of what’s happening because I thought that going to church was a joke. After the singing and all the theatrics, the preacher was introduced. He was a guest speaker from another church. After he preached (don’t ask me what he preached because I wasn’t listening), he started praying for people. He then stopped and said that God was speaking to a young man, in this place, but that young man is refusing to listen. He then looked at me and said that he can come right to my seat, but he wants this young man to come up on his own. When he said that, I didn’t know what conviction was at that time, but I felt the resistance in me leaving. He said it the second time and it became obvious that he was talking to me because he was looking at me. I didn’t want to look like a bad person, so I went up for prayer. That prayer never stopped the plans I had. As far as I was concerned, that experience never happened. The prayer meant nothing because I felt nothing. The strange thing is. After that experience, I felt different. I couldn’t explain it but denied giving credit to prayer. I never believed in prayer anyway.
The second time my girlfriend invited me to church, I went because she won the argument. She told me that she goes where I desire to be, but I refuse to go where she desires to be, yet I was suppose to love her. It also became a little easier because the resistance seemed to be wearing off. Church took the same direction as the last time I was there. After the praise and worship and all the theatrics. The preacher was introduced. The preacher was a short little lady whose name was Shiela. She was from a church in Capetown. After she preached, she started praying for people as usual. She then said the same thing that the first guest speaker said. The moment I heard it, I put my head down. I thought to myself this is not going to happen the second time. After a while, things were quiet. I picked up my head to see what was going on, and noticed that she wasn’t at the pulpit All of a sudden, I felt a smack on my shoulder. I turned quickly and looked into this little lady’s face. She demanded that I get up because she was led to pray for me. She told me that God was attempting to speak to me, but I was stubborn. After she prayed for me, I went straight home, sat on the bed of out one-room outbuilding. Facing the tv set on top of a small table, I noticed the bible on top of the tv. For the first time I picked up a Bible having interest in its content because of a conviction. I asked a question, opened the Bible and miraculously found the answer on the page I opened to. I asked another question, did the same thing and found an answer again. It was a little scary because I know that it was impossible.
On the third Sunday that I went to church with my girlfriend (now wife), I experienced the same thing. There was a guest speaker set up by God who followed through with the same statements that were directed to me by the previous speakers. That caused me to practically interrogate God because of all the things I didn’t understand. At that point, I hadn’t made a commitment to God because there were still uncertainties. When God dealt with the uncertainties, I was led by my Pastor, Blake Crouch, who has gone to be with the Lord. My life took a dramatic change for the good. That day I was Born Again. I got baptized and Christ gave me the power to become a son of God.
Since the day I was Born Again, I've been ordained into Ministry. I’ve traveled to eight countries, seen thousands of miracles, had the privilege of seeing what I prophesied come to pass on many occasions, I’ve received good revelation from God, I completed seven books and published one. Presently, I’m working on publishing the next three by February next year, then another three in July.
This dramatic change in my life was unbelievable for many who knew me. They couldn’t believe that my life could change in the way it did. On two occasion I was approached by guys I associated in the world. Both guys said that they believe that there is a God because of what He did in my life. There is nothing impossible with God.
Post a Comment