Simon, buried but not dead!
You may be thinking this is a weird title.
This month it’s been 2 years since I was in South Africa, in the bottom part of this blog I’m doing a short report of this trip. The reason of this title is the following. I want to tell something about Simon. I’ve known Simon for many years now and can say, when I look back, he had more impact on me than I thought he would. His appearance, stories, wisdom, perseverance, vision, energy, faith and solid confidence in God, is a great example for me. I’m literally saying ‘’ is a big example ‘’. Simon died on June 1, 2016, but his example is still an inspiration for me. He still lives in my thoughts, and in the thoughts of many others. That’s why I chose the title above.
Simon and Renskje have lived in South Africa for several years. They worked and started charity projects for the poorest ones. On the Charibiz site (http://charisites.wixsite.com/charibiz/home-c1hge) you can see what they are doing. On the grave of Simon is written:” it is well with my soul”. If you believe that Jesus has carried your punishment and paid for it with His life. And you acknowledge Him as Savior and Lord, you’re assured of Eternal Life. You can say then:” it is well with my soul”. If you read the title of this blog, I hope you can understand it’s possible to be buried but not dead because you have received eternal life. The son of Simon and Renskje, Simon Jr., continues the good work of the foundation.
He who believes in the Son has eternal life (John 3:36)
On November 6, 2015, I wrote:
On October 12, 2015, I left the cold and windy Netherlands for the warm and sunny Scottburgh in Zululand South Africa. Since the first day it went very differently than we planned. Simon Schaaij, founder and engine of the Charibiz Foundation, had a back problem and a lot of pain. He had so much pain that he could barely sit or walk. The doctors said that it most likely was a problem with his vertebra and sent him to a chiropractor.The pain continued and a ct scan was requested. A week later a terrible medical condition was discovered: there was a tumor in his spinal cord that pushes the nerve and causes severe pain. What to do? They decided to return to the Netherlands as soon as possible. A nurse from the Netherlands came to South-Africa to see if Simon could be transported. This happened, Simon has been transported to the Netherlands, was treated in Leeuwarden and the pain is now under control.
(Simon, unfortunately, did not get better and after a sick bed with sometimes unbearable pain, went to his Heavenly Father on June 1, 2016)
Because of this situation, we had to improvise and everything was a little different than planned. Simon Jr. has made a big effort to let us do what we intended to do, and this has been a perfect success. We had to do a lot by ourselves: driving, on the left side of the road with the steering wheel on the right, picking up bread, sharing bread, playing games with the children, sharing clothes, visit the sick, etc. Because I was planning to go with Simon Sr. to get along and learn a lot from him, but this was not possible, I had to do things I had never done before. From day 2, I spoke / preached, laying hands on the sick, pray for many people, encourage, bless, comfort, give hope, hugs and love. The highlight was that I was able to pray with 5 people who gave their lives to Jesus.
The last 3 weeks I have seen and learned a lot, I look forward to what plan God has for me in the coming days! This trip greatly enriched my life.