Obedient, Even Unto Discomfort

Four12 Global 2019, News, Outreaches, Testimonies

by Sheree van de Coolwijk


Having grown up in a religious lifestyle, I was used to a life of going to church and Sunday school every week because we were taught that these were the right things to “do” to make us good Christians. The sad reality was that I was lacking the one thing that the entire Christian Faith is built around…. a personal relationship with Jesus Christ! While I knew about God and Jesus, and said my prayers as a child every night, I had no idea what it was like to live a life surrendered to Him as my Lord and Saviour, and I had no clue what living a life filled with His Holy Spirit was like either. I carried on in this “religious” lifestyle until the end of my school years when I left for university. I then entered this new world of jaded “freedom,” which included drinking, partying, smoking, drugs and many failed relationships. In the end it was a life that left me empty inside. For the next 10 years life carried on like this, from day to day, with no real purpose. At this stage church had become an event I attended only when someone got married, someone died, and the good old Christmas and Easter services!

It was then, at the age of 28, that I found myself in what was the most spiritually broken place I’d ever been after yet another failed relationship, that God reached down and lifted me out of the pits of hell and saved me into His loving Kingdom. I met some spirit filled ladies that counselled me and guided me into beginning a life lived for Jesus. I also had a strong sense, soon after meeting Jesus, that God’s call for me was going to be a life of ministry into the nations and that it would look like me laying down my entire life and everything in it (including friends, family and the luxuries and comforts of this life) to follow Him (just like in Acts 1:8).

Now, just over 10 years later, an opportunity of a lifetime has arisen that has taken me by complete surprise. I have suddenly been presented with something that feels kind of terrifying. Stepping through the unknown takes courage and courage isn’t always readily available. Through the power of prayer and wrestling with the opportunity’s positives and negatives, I’ve come to the point where my heart feels the peace I’ve been looking for, making the task of accepting this opportunity much easier (Psalm 119:105). I believe that the time has now come, and the door has finally opened for me (after many personal dreams and prophetic words given to me about traveling to the nations,) to hit the African mission field and to start this journey into full time ministry! This is an adventure I will be embarking on this year, having submitted every decision regarding this to my elders, who are supporting me in this as they have sought the Lord on my behalf and have walked closely with me through this big step of faith. So, I recently resigned from my job and at the end of January I will be flying out of Cape Town, South Africa and hopefully, straight into Zimbabwe. I will then be heading to Zambia to visit with our Four12 churches before relocating to Malawi to join Lance and Sue McIntosh on their new God-adventure.

What will my life look like this year? I have NO CLUE! But I DO know that He has called me and that the only thing I need to do now is walk in obedience to His Spirit…step by step, one day at a time! I know it won’t be an easy road, but it is going to be so worth it! I am excited and expectant to see how God is going to WOW me, and those around me, through the witnessing of miracles, salvations, deliverance, healing etc. in ways I have never seen before (Matthew 28:19-20)! Africa, I am coming for you, watch this space!

Sheree is a member of Joshua Generation Church and part of the Sunningdale PM congregation in Cape Town. She has a passion for Youth and Prison Ministry. With a strong gifting in evangelism and the prophetic, her desire is to travel the world and witness how God speaks through her to many people and changes lives supernaturally for His Kingdom.

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