For the most part I am guilty of writing with a theological mindset of teaching. This is certainly not to say that it doesn’t come from a place of my own struggles. That is evident for anybody who knows me and has read any of my previous posts. I have been through a lot and the only constant in any of it is my faith. I have therefore tried to write about topics close to me and encourage anyone reading them from my own experience.
What I really mean by the above is I get carried away writing, it become well constructed metaphors and thoroughly researched scriptures and topics. Not deeply personal.
Today I want to share something different. Today I want to openly share me. My heart, my inner most thoughts, my doubts and what I deal with daily. It starts by me telling you a bit about me. Who I am, where I come from and where I plan on going.
My name is Timothy Benjamin Cohen, yes sounds quite proper and very biblical. I guess my name gives clues to my upbringing. Both my parents are strong believers and I was brought up in church. My father was even a pastor for a number of years and it is true, that for some reason pastors kids tend to become quite naughty and stretch the limits. I was no different. Insolent, rebellious and completely self centered as if the world was created exclusively for my happiness. I had a form of faith and never ever doubted that any of the stories I heard growing up were true but that’s as far as it went. I didn’t live like I truly believed any of it. That all changed whilst backpacking for a few years. I came to know God personally. Far away from home and my upbringing. In the process I met Sarah who is now my wife of 6 years.
Our marriage, although dedicated wholeheartedly to God was much like our lives. Full of potential and sparks of purpose and love for Him. But I, like so many others, fell into the trap of complacency and was clinging on to tightly to the reins of our lives. It was if I was saying to God I was cool, thanks for being my saviour and my Father but in day to day life I got this. Before you know it the only time I was giving God was on Sunday mornings. That was until a tempting opportunity developed for us to have a stand for our new business at a market on Sundays. Justifications were a plenty and we even did art pieces professing and sharing our faith. Whilst the stand had evidence of our faith, my life in particular, started showing less and less. My wife had to return to England unexpectedly and the door was left open for my life to spiral further out of control and Gods comfort. We were apart for almost a year and the darkness of that year is for another post but I drifted further and further away from Him. When it’s only a little bit everyday you don’t notice and not a lot of people around you notice very quickly either, until it is too late.
Good news and fast forward a few months and it is NEVER to late for God. On a beach in Mallorca with more nude German tourists around than Christians I found myself again in close covenant and communion with my God. Listening to songs, reading scripture, and anything I could get my hands on. Hunger for him returned. It took me far too long, loosing so much, almost loosing everything before I finally accepted and humbly conceded that His plan for my life must certainly be better than my own.
Fast forward to today, a few months later and I can assure you that it is not a magical switch! On that beach I wish I could say that with my confession and re submitting my life to God everything just clicked back to normal. Not even close.
As I sit now writing this, I am in one of the most uncomfortable positions of my life. Literally my back is buggered. I have been sleeping on friends couches for several months now and it’s taking it’s toll. The latest of these couches is the smallest and least comfortable. Maybe payback for my sins Worse than the couch is the location. Without being disrespectful or ungrateful I am probably staying in the worst place I have ever spent longer than a week in my life! Winter is encroaching with alarming speed. I had work and it just got taken way from under me. Although I am technically still employed I am on a zero hours contract. Typically I received standard sort of 35 hours a week and really never thought I would get what was promised in the contract, however that is what I have had for the past few weeks. Zero hours.
There is light ahead and I by no means am writing any of this to evoke any sympathy from anybody, rather to paint an honest picture of my circumstances and whereabouts. We have secured a lovely 2 bedroom apartment in one of the nicest suburbs in the Midlands of England. A far cry from my current neighborhood. Only 17 days left until we move in on date of writing this. A base, a home, a place I can finally put my weary feet up will make me extremely grateful.
It’s just the beginning though.
This time has given me plenty of opportunity for reflection and equally time planning our future.
This is where it gets interesting. I catapulted myself into making plans and addressing my weaknesses and making contingency plans of contingency plans. Budgets, business plans, research projects. I prayed and reflected on our past plans, our commitments and desires from when we got married and I came up with a list of what we needed to do and a My plan was born. Spoiler alert, I got carried away.
But here it is, make sure to read to the end.
We want to host people. All who are weary to come and stay with us. After years of us both traveling we believe we would make fantastic hosts of a Guest Lodge. On top of that we are both also passionate about sharing our interests. For Sarah that means surfing, and she would like to complete her surf instructor course so we can offer surf lessons and maybe SUP tours. For me I am passionate about my country. I love South Africa and anybody who has met me abroad knows I just don’t shut up about all the amazing things they just have to come and see. So I would like to set up a scenario in which I can both host and show them around SA and sarah can spend time in the Ocean and share her passion for surfing.
We were deeply moved by a song called Oceans Rise and thus the lodge is intended to be named – Oceans Rise Adventure Lodge.
To get there though, I needed a plan and yes you guessed it I I I I I I started to take over. So enthused but also dangerously close to taking over the reigns again.
Get solid work in UK Earn lots in pounds Save lots – Goal £2000/month (20-1 exchange rate) Learn to manage and grow finances Scout property in SA – buy beach front land – Garden Route Do research on running a lodge / B&B Plan plan plan the lodge – Build it from the ground up – design everything Sarah and I get qualified in activities – surf instructors, safari tours, diving instructors etc Plan every detail before buying a thing Set up a fail safe, contngency plan – property in uk? Backup extra revenue stream for out of season Diversify asserts so they not all linked or in lodge Make oceans Rise happen!!! 5 years goal External hobbies for Sarah and I – artistic creative outlets. Art studio and writing Thank God everyday no every second for a life I didn’t deserve
Seems obtainable, even righteously so, but at 4am last night I was challenged by God to say that I need to submit to His will not mine and was definitely exposed for getting slightly ahead of myself, besides if this comes to be, His plan will be better than mine. God’s plan
Trust in Him.
Father your will be done in our lives.
Dreaming of our future can rob me of my present. The world is not enough for me, only God can satisfy and quench our souls. Just give me you. Dissatisfied perhaps in my current circumstance, I imagined a comforting scenario, a life that would make me happy and it does give me peace as long as I’m working towards it. I need peace in my present not peace in the Hope of my future.
But what if I get it? Will I be happy, will I still look ahead to something else? We need to be content before we even set out on this plan. In Him. He is enough.
I said to God just give me my wife back – He did Just get me out of debt and a job – He is Just get me back to SA – In His time Please God may we live by the sea where we can be happy, it really does feed our souls – If that is what you have planned for us Lord All I know is your plan is better than mine Lord. You know me, better than I know myself. You know Sarah and my hearts desires and what makes us come alive. It was, after all, you who placed this purpose over our lives.
If we do this, we do it bodly within your will and under your blessing. With complete faith in you to see it come to be. I trust in you father, that you know what is right for our lives.
I love you Lord, you rescued me. You are all that I want and you are all that I need.
Thank you Lord
I hope this encourages you to seek His will for your life and whilst it’s impotant to understand your passions and purpose its about trusting in Him for them to come to be.
Oceans Rise……2020? Dunno watch this space. I am doing something everyday towards it.
Anybody interested in finding out more about it, check back on www.oceansrise.co.za – coming soon.
Today I want to share a video with you. It gives me great hope for my future back home, that God can call someone and they can heed His call and I pray and trust he will be effective for Him and my beautiful country South Africa.
Mission – I read something once that said that God in His infinite wisdom placed in you a purpose. This purpose can be revealed through the deepest desires of your heart. What makes you come alive, what is your passion, what are you willing to work on everyday for the rest of your life even if it only comes to be in your childrens lifetime? What breaks your heart and you can’t just look the other way?, what motivates you to get so excited you can’t get your words out? Therein lies your purpose and mission.
Pray and seek Him, listen for that quiet tug inside your heart. Deep down you know what it is.
I believe this man is on a mission from God, I didn’t know much about him but must have watched every YouTube video with him in today. South Africa is crying out for a leader who deeply cares for her people, not one who looks to exploit them for their own selfish gain. This is an inspiring interview and then he share’s on mission and passion in a preach afterwards.
This dude is amazing! His attitude is just brilliant. This is one of the most moving testimonies about how God can fix what is really broken in/with you and use you for his purpose.
My name is Nick Vujicic and I am thankful to have been born 30 years ago with no arms and no legs. I won’t pretend my life is easy, but through the love of my parents, loved ones, and faith in God, I have overcome my adversity and my life is now filled with joy and purpose. I reside now in California with my wife, Kanae, and we both love seeing people’s lives changed for the better or touched in some way. It is my hope that your life is positively impacted by my story.
I was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia, and it was a shock to my parents that I arrived without limbs. There is no medical reason for it. My parents did their very best to keep me in the mainstream school system and give me every opportunity to live to the fullest. I was blessed to have a brother and a sister as my best friends too.
We later moved to Brisbane, Australia, where I lived for 14 years before I made the move to California. At age eight, I could not see a bright future ahead and I became depressed. When I was ten years old, I decided to end my life by drowning myself in a bathtub. After a couple attempts, I realized that I did not want to leave my loved ones with the burden and guilt that would result from my suicide. I could not do that to them.
I wasn’t depressed my entire childhood, but I did have ups and downs. At age thirteen I hurt my foot, which I use for many things like typing, writing and swimming. That injury made me realize that I need to be more thankful for my abilities and less focused on my disabilities.
When I was fifteen years old, I sealed my faith in God and from there it has been an amazing journey.
A janitor at my high school inspired me to start speaking about my faith and overcoming adversity when I was seventeen. I spoke only a dozen times to very small groups over the next two years. Then I found myself in front of three hundred sophomore (grade 10) students and I was very nervous. My knees were shaking. Within the first three minutes of my talk, half the girls were crying, and most of the boys were struggling to hold their emotions together. One girl in particular was sobbing very hard. We all looked at her and she put her hand up. She said, “I am so sorry to interrupt, but can I come up and hug you?”
She came hugged me in front of everyone, and whispered in my ear, “Thank you, thank you, thank you. No one has ever told me that they loved me and that I am beautiful the way I am.”
Her gratitude inspired me to go across 44 countries and speak 2,000 times. I realized that we all need love and hope and that I was in a unique position to share that with people around the world.
While majoring in both accounting and financial planning at a university, I also worked on developing my abilities as a speaker. I worked with a speaking coach who helped to cultivate me as a presenter. He especially worked on my body language as my hands flew everywhere at first!
I spoke on motivational topics after creating the company, attitude is altitude. I also launched a non-profit ministry, life without limbs, to spread my messages of faith and hope around the world.
Whoever you are, wherever you’re from and whatever you are dealing with, I hope that you will be inspired by my story and my message. Please enjoy browsing around this website where I share with you my thoughts on faith, hope and love to encourage you and to help you overcome your own challenges.
Dream big my friend and never give up. We all make mistakes, but none of us are mistakes. Take one day at a time. Embrace the positive attitudes, perspectives, principles and truths I share, and you too will overcome.
Keep on Keeping on
I was blessed to grow up in a loving Christian home. Both my parents had committed their lives to the full-time ministry of serving God and His people. Our little family, my parents, my elder sister Johanni, younger sister Steffani and I were instructed in the Way of the Lord – always placing Him first. We were taught the Word of God from an early age – learning it verse by verse and reciting it to guests visiting our home. We were basking in the love of the Lord and I felt blessed, and at a young age was starting to comprehend the Father’s Heart for His children here on earth.
In primary school I excelled at both academics and sport. I was a happy child and was experiencing God’s true blessings in my life. My parents loved each other and protected and challenged us on every level – always offering their support and motivation. My father instilled a strong champion spirit within us, teaching us to believe that we are winners and always motivating us by saying: “The best is yet to come. That is what God wants for you – the BEST, to PROSPER”. My mother taught us the art of survival – to live with endurance and perseverance. She taught us diligence and nurtured a fighter’s spirit within each one of us – never to give up in challenging times and to have patience and perseverance. When I went to high school things started to change. I was going through the typical changes a teenage boy experiences – wanting to impress the girls but feeling insecure, looking terribly out of proportion with extra large ears and feet and experiencing problems with my skin. I didn’t play for the A-team, and wasn’t very popular. A good thing was that my attitude was right and I always participated in as many events as I could, knowing through what I had been taught that hard work and a good attitude is what pulls you through.
My parents were going through a crisis in their marriage and it became evident that my pretty picture of home was going to change. At the age 15 my parents chose to get a divorce. I was asking more and more questions about life and God – especially how a loving God could allow this to happen. Why do bad things happen to good people? Why do families get separated? I realised only later that this isn’t Gods plan, but we live and die by the decisions we make. In Deutoronomy 30 God says: “I lay before you life and death, blessing and cursing, so choose life..” Yet alot of times we blame God for the decisions we make.
This was a very big blow to my world. My picture of family was shattered – no more family holidays or Christmas’s together. The security I’d known until that point was plucked out from under me. Through this pain I made a decision that one day I would make a success of my marriage and I would learn from the mistakes my parents had made.
You also have to make that decision… its not good enough to say because your parents did it, that’s why you are doing it, you’re better than that! Turn your pain around. Learn from it. You can do it!
Instead of seeking God in all of my pain I found consolation with my friends and became more and more influenced by the group. Peer pressure, like what people thought of me, trying to be someone else, brought about a lifestyle of self-centeredness. I was always in pursuit of acceptance and acknowledgement, but ironically only feeding the void in your soul, being empty when I was alone.
I was living with my mother and two sisters and as a family we were going through some really challenging times. My elder sister Johanni was a full-time law student. Myself and Steffani were both still at high school. At 40 years old, having been a stay-at-home mom, my mother decided to study a degree in law in pursuit of her independence and financial freedom.
This was adding a lot of pressure to our situation and financially we were struggling to make ends meet. I remember a time I invited friends over to our house, advising them that they could only visit our home, but could not eat there because we did not have enough money for food to entertain our guests. It was during this time that my sister Johanni, 22 years old at the time and in her final year of LLB, fell pregnant with her long-time boyfriend. This was another blow to my understanding of life and family. A family so committed to serving God? What would everyone say? How would this look to the world? Our core moral values were in question. Johanni was faced with the choice so many women in her situation are faced with – the question of having an abortion. This proved to be the easy way out. In our home we were taught that the pain of discipline is worth more than the pain of shame. Taking responsibility was the right thing to do – it would bring forth fruit in the long run.
Johanni chose to take responsibility for her actions and not to give up, but to follow through with the pregnancy. God blessed her with a beautiful baby girl called Milla two weeks before her final LLB Law exam. Milla was a miracle and came to us in such a difficult time. Today we cannot imagine our lives without this little princess. Now she’s 7 years old and a bundle of life-giving joy!
My father taught us that if we continue doing the same things that other people were doing we would never be different. I wanted to be different. God blessed me with sporting talent. In this difficult time I chose to be different and make a few major decisions. I wanted to be the fastest, the strongest and the best at what I did. When my father was young he was a prominent sports figure in South Africa, excelling at athletics and rugby. I had the blessing of inheriting these genes. Yet, talent is never enough. My father had taught me that the seeds of discipline and sacrifice needed to be sown for the harvest of success to come in. I had to make a commitment. It was the only thing I was sure of in my life. I was motivated by the quote: “Success is not the blaze of sudden glory won, it is the effort adding up of strong work done.” I was in gym every morning at 5am, playing rugby after school, choir in the evenings and then there was the academics. This was such a busy time, but before I knew it I was in Grade 12 and I had grown from a small out of proportion teen to a tall, strong and fast young man. I started reaping the rewards of those disciplined decisions. Not partying when my friends did and training when they didn’t . I was No 1 in South Africa in discus, I was No 3 in shotput U20, and qualified for the World Junior Athletics Championships. I was chosen to captain the Blue Bulls at Craven Week and I was excelling at my rugby. I was confronted with a choice to pursue a professional career in sport and chose rugby.
After high school I signed a contract with the Blue Bulls and was given a full bursary to study at the University of Pretoria. This was awesome and I was experiencing financial independence I wasn’t accustomed to because of my contract. In my first year I was chosen for the SA U19 side and the media started paying attention to me. I was labelled the next big thing in South African rugby. I was experiencing the honor of man and I was riding this wave of glory. However, at the World Championships the unexpected happened when I broke my arm. The break was bad and the injury would initially keep me sidelined for at least two months. My mind was filled with so many questions. This was supposed to be my time and my breakthrough after everything I had invested. Why me Lord? Why now? My gran shared the Bible verse from John 13:7 with me, and I would only later fully understand it’s relevance. God has a plan with everything.
My arm did not heal in the expected time and I ended up not playing for 10 months. My thinking at the time was that it was a great time to commit to my studies, but it turned out to be the perfect excuse for a party. I was young and started hanging out in all the clubs, drinking and slowly losing my focus that had previously driven me to succeed. I was in a very bad space. My dad kept motivating me by saying I had to remain positive and that the best was yet to come. By the end of 2004 I had no goals and no motivation, and was totally unfocussed. On top of all this my arm refused to heal. It was at this time I believed things could not get any worse. I was so wrong. I got the shocking news that my father had a heart attack and had died at the age of 53. How sudden! How could this be? Lord this is too much! Why now? I need my dad, my father, my mentor… But God had a divine plan…
I was immediately confronted with questions of my life, mortality and eternity. This was the moment my life changed. I knew that I desperately needed to get my life right with God. I started asking what the goal of my life was and chasing God’s plan. I was not sure of what would happen to me if I died. I needed to connect with God and make a few radical decisions for what I believed. My father had been the cornerstone of my security. He was my foundation, my protector, my guide. My dad called himself the “Groot Leeu” – he was 6 ft 4 and had an awesome aura around him. He had a fantastic sense of humour, was multi-talented, played the piano and guitar, wrote the most incredible letters, always sent us motivational texts and was always inspiring us. He believed in me and raised his children for one great goal – to do great things for the Kingdom of God. My father taught us to always be the best you can be and wrote each one of us a song when we were little. Mine went something like this: “My naam is Ouboet en ek is my pa se bul. Ek is nog maar baie klein, maar Loftus gaan nog brul. Al wil ek nooit aan die lag kom nie en almal se ek is nors bly ek nog die baas, met “Big shot” op my bors…”
My dad spoke prophetically into our lives from a young age. I will never forget the simple truths he taught me – always be humble and friendly with everyone. They say when a father dies the son becomes a man. The “Groot Leeu” (Big lion) was gone and the “Klein Leeu” (Small lion) had to take his place. God started sending people into my life, sharing His love and relating their life stories and that it was time for me to make a decision for Him. One Sunday morning after a heavy night before, I found myself sitting in church. He was calling. The call was loud and clear within my spirit and I knew I wanted to give my life to the Lord Jesus Christ and commit to serving Him. That day it felt like the pastor was speaking directly to me. The Bible says God is light, and when he shines upon you it is your conscience that speaks to you.
I was tired of hangovers and the fake glory of man. I chose to give my life back to God that day in the church, publicly in front of people, crying and repenting of my sins, accepting Christ in my heart completely, wanting Him to consume every part of me. And He did.. .he made me new. God makes you a new creation and wipes away your past!
AGAIN, I wanted to be different. I no longer wanted to live the lie. To be lukewarm and live proclaiming to be a Christian but not really living like one. I had a burning within my soul to serve God and people, to find God and to really know God. Because, I had made the decision to seek God’s Kingdom first above everything else, He started to change my life. I wanted to serve people and to deny myself. To see people coming into the Kingdom of God and finding Jesus Christ, finding freedom and peace and restoration for their brokenness. I knew that I was chosen to fulfil God’s plan for my life and not my own. God had stationed me in a specific position to reach people and to share with them what He has done in my life. God has called us to be fishers of men and to live in love with one another. I am a warrior for the Kingdom of God and will stand on His word with my life and all that I am. I realised God’s plans are better than mine and that He knows more than me. In 2005 I met Juanné my (then girlfriend) and now my wife. She is a woman who loves God more than me, who is my best friend and the most beautiful woman on earth, someone who was willing to walk a road less travelled and who had a heart for broken people. That’s something I wanted, and God blessed me with her, in abundance. In our relationship we made tough decisions and set boundaries to keep us pure before marriage and really became best friends. We still reap the rewards, and you can too if you make tough choices and put God first above yourself and your partner. Remember the devil wants to destroy your relationship and that your relationship is the first test of your faith. Charity starts at home…always!
My rugby career started to soar and I was chosen to play for the Springboks in 2006. My test debut was a nightmare losing 49-0 to Australia and then being dropped from the team. But I got a second chance and then gave a Man of the Match performance against the All Blacks in Rustenburg. 2007 was a World Cup year and the excitement was building. Having had a successful Super 14 with the Bulls which culminated in us winning the title I was anticipating being part of the tournament in France. I was selected in the World Cup squad, and was being touted as a favourite to win the Player of the Tournament by some respected rugby men.
Two weeks after the squad announcement I started to cough up blood, had chest pains and breathing pains. Our team doctor took me for tests and the shocking news hit me.. .I had blood clots on my lungs! I thought: What? Blood clots? God, you must be joking? We’re on our way to the World Cup? The highlight of my career? I’m walking in your ways God? I live a healthy life, look after my body and train hard and don’t use illegal substances? Doctors said I had to take a course of blood-thinning medication for a minimum of six months and I was under strict instructions never to play rugby during that period. Immediately I knew God was in control. I didn’t know exactly how but His word says He has great plans for our futures and that we’ve been healed by his wounds. I walked in faith and I wrote on a big poster : “Healed in Jesus name” because I knew God had the power to heal me. My faith was tested, but I made a decision to praise God even if I stayed sick or got healed because I knew God’s plan is bigger than mine and I had to submit to His will. It was an unconditional choice, in the same way He loves us unconditionally. There was alot of medical tests done, from head to toe. I would always put on a praise and worship cd in my car on the way to the hospital, screaming and praising God with a loud voice, knowing that whether my lungs are sick or if they’re healthy, I was going to praise God because HE IS GOOD. You keep with your decision… you keep on keeping on.
Man has limitations, but with God all things are possible.
Then… after the six months of medication a miracle happened. GOD HEALED ME. Doctors said it was impossible. They said I would never play again. Most people with blood clots never get off the medication, but God is moved by faith and not by belief in world systems. I was able to play rugby again and pursue my career. I got married at the end of 2008 which shows His great love and mercy. He did great work in me and he can do the same for you.
God will fulfil his plan for you if you trust Him. Jesus has used me as an instrument to reach my family and friends and help them change their lives by loving them the way He instructs us to. Through my rugby career I have been honoured to visit many exceptional countries and places and meet wonderful people. Many doors have been opened to me to share His Name and His Love. My message to you is that God has a plan for your life. He has a passion for YOU. He speaks to you everyday through that small voice inside you. Yes, you probably know it. Once you have decided to follow Him and live for Him, He will do more for you than you ever could have imaged. Take His hand, He will do the rest.
This girl is amazing! Loved the movie it is very inspiring and really helps you recognize that God has a bigger plan for your life and it’s all about perspective.
Bethany Hamilton has become a source of inspiration to millions through her story of faith, determination, and hope. Born into a family of surfers on February 8, 1990, on the island of Kauai, Hawaii, Bethany began surfing at a young age. At the age of eight, Bethany entered her first surf competition, the Rell Sun Menehune event on Oahu, where she won both the short and long board divisions. This sparked a love for surf competition within her spirit.
At the age of thirteen, on October 31, 2003, Bethany was attacked by a 14-foot tiger shark while surfing off Kauai’s North Shore. The attack left Bethany with a severed left arm. After losing over 60% of her blood, and making it through several surgeries without infection, Bethany was on her way to recovery with an unbelievably positive attitude. Lifeguards and doctors believe her strong water sense and faith in God helped get her through the traumatic ordeal.
Miraculously, just one month after the attack, Bethany returned to the water to continue pursuing her goal to become a professional surfer. In January of 2004, Bethany made her return to surf competition; placing 5th in the Open Women’s division of that contest. With no intention of stopping, Bethany continued to enter and excel in competition. Just over a year after the attack she took 1st place in the Explorer Women’s division of the 2005 NSSA National Championships – winning her first National Title.
In 2007, Bethany realized her dream and turned pro. Bethany has since participated in numerous ASP and World Tour Events with her major highlight being a second place finish in the ASP 2009 World Junior Championships. (See Career Highlights and Surf Related News for more results)
Since losing her arm, Bethany’s story has been told in hundreds of media outlets and she has been recognized with numerous awards, public appearances, and various speaking engagements. (See Awards & Appearances)
In October 2004, Bethany shared her life story in her autobiography entitled Soul Surfer. Seven years later, the book was made into a major motion picture bearing the same title which released theatrically in April, and for home entertainment in August, 2011. Other books Bethany has written include “Devotions for the Soul Surfer,” “Rise Above,” A “Soul Surfer” Bible, “Ask Bethany,” and “Clash,” “Burned,” “Storm,” and “Crunch.” (See Books for publishing information) Further, Bethany was the inspiration behind Becky Baumgartner’s 2007 documentary entitledHeart of a Soul Surfer.
From a young age, Bethany’s parents instilled their faith in Jesus Christ; and at age 5, she made the decision to have a personal relationship with Him. Bethany’s foundation of faith has been her backbone; her source of truth, hope, and strength.
Out of the water, Bethany has grown from a young teenage girl with aspirations of becoming a professional surfer into a twenty-year old professional surfer with aspirations of becoming a beacon of inspiration and hope. Through the platform of professional sport, Bethany has been able to touch a large number of people with her message, charitable efforts, and overall spirit. Bethany just launched her own foundation,Friends of Bethany, which supports shark attack survivors, traumatic amputees, and serves to inspire others through her life story, and is involved in numerous other charitable efforts. (See Give Back for more charitable partnerships)
Bethany’s story is continually growing as she strives to be the best at whatever God calls her to do. The future is truly wide open for this young soul surfer!
Here is a scene from the film about perspective
Watch the trailer of the movie below –
Inspirations: Derek Rabelo
How a blind Brazilian surfer conquered Pipeline
As seen in the May 2013 issue of TransWorld SURF magazine. Subscribe now and get a free gift!
Derek Rabelo isn’t your average surfer. In fact, he’s as far from that as one may be. Derek was born with congenital glaucoma—in plain English, without sight. But that didn’t stop the 20-year-old Brazilian from learning to surf when he was just three years old. “I swim, surf, ride skateboards and bikes,” says Rabelo. “With God, everything is possible.” Understandably, religion plays a big role in his life. In fact, the church helped take him to Hawaii last winter, where the surf community took Rabelo under its wing. After a video was released with Makua Rothman taking the Brazilian surfing at a small day in Pipeline, his fame spread across the globe. It shows him duckdiving incoming whitewash with perfect timing, as well as paddling into waves all by himself. “I can see the same things as others, except in different ways,” he explains.
Rabelo returned to the North Shore this winter to gather footage for his upcoming documentary, Beyond Sight—its teaser even showing big-wave surfer Carlos Burle towing him into well-overhead waves at a Brazilian beachbreak. Relying on four out of five senses, if Derek’s example doesn’t put trivial complaints like high tides or sideshore winds into perspective, not a lot of other stories will.