Various degrees of chilling - 27 February 2009 (Tinus)

Traveling is hard work. You need to rest every now and then when traveling, or else you'll burn out (if anything heat related is possible in freezing Europe, that is.)

Therefore, our tour plan includes several days of tranquility and relaxation: our time Germany and Phuket being constituted primarily thereof. It is thus, at this juncture between Thailand and Singapore...between rest and work...between fantasy and half reality (since it would be ludicrous to refer to our present situation - even within a week set aside for intensive labour - as reality) my pleasure to testify to our time of sanctuary.

Those who know the Fourie family, will know however that even in our holidays, we rarely slow down. We mostly just shift our attention from work to utter immersement in the joys of having fun. The same was partly true this time round also. As you can relate from the posts of my family members this is certainly true of Germany and is also of Phuket. But, I will not be writing about our busy experiences in Phuket, but our tranquil ones. So, grab a cup of coffee, sit back and relax...

Anyone that has ever driven with my father to Swakopmund or Oshakati when he is slightly late, can testify that we as a family (excluding my mother off course) love speed. Imagine therefore our bliss at being in Germany. Fail to understand our jubilance? Well, the Germans thought it bright to drape their landscape in huge roads with no speed limit. And we were driving an Audi... (Oom Rolie, I think I am starting to understand your fascination with the four circles.)

Driving was thus a breeze. The times we were cruising for hundreds of kilometers at 180. The periods we were blazing at 220. And then that other time..

We were driving from Heidelberg back home. It was fairly late and the road, all 3 lanes thereof, was quiet. We were driving at about 170 (slow and steady in other words) and my brothers were asleep. My parents were talking in whispers up front and Nianel from our I-pod was streaming across the stereo. That was wonderful! More than an hour of watching the landscape change. The slow and powerful movements of the numerous windmills. Resting, Thinking, Relaxing... Oh, that was wonderful!!!!

Well, just to stay accurate, I must remind all that immediately after this relaxing experience we had to hike in the snow...

---|Off topic a little. The road system in Germany was fast, but the infrastructure in Switzerland just awesome. Hundreds (and I'm not exaggerating) of tunnels. One moment you're in one valley, staring up at insurmountable mountains, the next you're in another valley all together. WOW |---

Back to my story. From chilling in the chilly Germany to chilling in the scorching Phuket.

Well, we had a great many wonderful experiences here. Many of them were relaxing and thus earn their right to be written about in this post. Writing about all of them, however, would hinder my relaxing this last few hours, so I shall write about one... No, I shall let the photo do the talking...

Chill, I mean cheers all.

Last on Germany - 24 February(Dawie)

One of the special aspects of our tour, for me, was that we started our tour in Europe...the place where our forefathers came from. The Fouries from France and the von Gerickes from Germany.

I very recently read through the first five books of the Old Testament again. The family-inheritance-line in the Bible is one you can't miss. The most valuable thing in my life is the fact that I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. This good news was brought to my forefathers through missionaries or the church from France and Germany. Many church leaders like a Martin Luther and Calvin came from areas we traveled through.

We, therefore made an effort to visit churches...old ones...not only from the 1800 but also from as far back as 1400 and 1100. One of our last visits in Germany was to their oldest town,Trier, apparently founded decades before Christ!. (Some claim it is older than Rome.) We visited the oldest "bisschopskerk" called "De Dom". They took a photo of me standing in front of their "leadership"board. A board with the names of their leaders since incorporation which went back to 250 years after Christ. Yes, you read correctly, they were founded a generation or two after Christ was on earth.

In the church there is a special place they call "die heilige rock", where they keep a part of the original cloth of the robe of Jesus. There is a whole history behind this cloth which was last shown to the public in 1969. They plan to open and show it again to the world in 2012.

WE spent quite some time in the church...worshiping God, the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Sometimes, we as leaders want everything done through a 3-5 year strategic plan...maybe we should learn from the past...sometimes it takes many, many generations...

From 1 Cor 3:13 it is clear: our work will be tested...

"O Heavenly Father, may our work bear fruit for not only this generation, but for many to come... for your Kingdom, for your honour and glory... in Jesus Name...Amen"

From freezing to steaming 23/2/09 (Charlie)

I am now writing from a very hot Phuket, thinking about the interesting physical exercise scenarios thus far, happy to share them with you! Before I do that, I just want to talk about a few things that's going on in my mind and in my heart.

The last few days have been like a rally: of emotions, time, traveling and finally relaxation. Some of those emotions were laughter and happiness inside while at other times they were regrettably exhaustion, impatience and worry. My mother already shared all our travel frenzies with you and thus you can understand the above emotions. I felt unsure inside with all that was going on around me but then, during one of my silent times with the Lord last week, I felt in my spirit that the Lord said to me He knows my thoughts and feelings and He will be there to comfort me. It was then that He gave me Acts 2:25 "Nothing and no one will let you stumble"! It was then that Jesus' teachings hit me, "You of little faith". I realised then that I just have to have more faith in Him and trust Him to guide me and to protect me. From there on , after asking the Lord's forgiveness, I began to enjoy everything to the full again, not stressing or worrying about future road blocks, but giving it to the Lord and deciding to praise Him no matter what.I was stealing my own joy, because I was thinking about myself and not about the people around me who were also having a tough time traveling. God came through for us thus far and I believe that He always will!

Having talked about that I decided to write about all our perspiration and exhaustion. It began in Switzerland... My father (previously manager of my WHS rugby side) did not want to send back an unfit son to Namibia, especially because the reason for going back to Namibia was to play very tough rugby. Thus me and Tinus started jogging and running in the mountains. Those first few jogs were devastating. Not only because I was unfit at the time but also because of the high altitude and because everything was up hill. The icy cold weather didn't help either. I didn't know my fingers and ears could burn that way without heat, sometimes after a jog I couldn't even stretch my frozen face enough to smile... At the end I enjoyed all the mountain running a lot not only because I knew it was great exercise but because I had a breathtaking view every time.

When we arrived in Germany about two weeks ago, it was a whole new experience again. Being in the woods with a slight drizzle and no snow(not for long) me and Tinus decided to go and jog in these woods. Except for still being very cold, everything was different. We had no view, just trees. When it snowed the following few days there it made all the jogging in the woods even more interesting and more tiring. Leaving Germany with all it's traveling and driving to Frankfurt and back I knew that my exercise routine was going to go up a notch, in toughness and degrees Celsius.

Arriving in Singapore with all the humidity and searing heat I knew this was going to be a mental battle, but I was determined to win... "Traveling is amazing" I thought when standing without a shirt on the beach in Phuket after our first jog. I was sweating all over after a steaming hot, blazing fast run. No more cool mountain jogging. This was extreme! What made it more exciting and tough was that my Father got a whistle and wanted to see sprints... A lot of them... Although this wasn't easy I tried to slow time and think about God's grace and goodness to give me a healthy body to use all energy and to move most of my body on full capability. This made running exciting and gave me the feeling of freedom.

I am glad to inform you that my father is going to another gear with me and that it is going to get a lot worse. I Praise God and trust in Him.

Till next time I write, be faithful with your time with the Lord and trust in Him because He is There for you as well(Psalm 11 - 13)! Sorry That is all for today, I have to go and run sprints now! God bless!


P.S. "Come on Charlie you can do it!