Student Newsletter Bush Phase 2012

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We departed for the Bush Phase of our training program on the 13 April 2012, to a place called the Wolkberge.  It is an isolated mountainous reserve near Tzaneen in the Limpopo region of South Africa. We spent the next 11 days, hiking through these misty mountains, from cold evenings to blazing hot days, hiking through nerve wrenching cliffs and along quiet mountain streams, through many challenges thorns and thistles. We got to experience the Amazing views, fresh air, pure water and soul searching opportunities that these Mountains had to offer.  

The purpose of this trip being to strengthen our character, to build us up for our future as missionary’s, by teaching us how to survive in the wild and how to work together as a team, it has revealed to us that we are capable of much more than we often think.  Out there we learnt to rely on one another, facing God’s creation so that we may enjoy it to the full!  Our two months of physical training prior to our departure was worthwhile and was well needed to endure an approximate 100km hike!  Together we underwent navigation and first aid training and with maps and compasses in hand we braved the bush!
 
We were comforted by the presence of our facilitators’ for the first 3 days, but were left to our own devices from thereon!  Our mission being to find the waterfall marked on the map, bringing back proof of our arrival there.  Our first 2 days alone, we marched along a winding road and up a towering mountain, camping rather uncomfortably on the side over a stormy night. However, the next day greeted us with sunny skies and “The Bush of Tribulation!”  Thanks to our teams’ scouts, navigators and God’s grace we found an easy way to break through the thorny vines and continued to ascend into the hills thereafter, then descending to the long awaited waterfall!  It was a great moment for us to finally arrive at this point and achieve the first phase of our goal!
 
We were grateful to be given the platform to plan and apply what we had been taught and were tested physically, emotionally and spiritually over the duration of the hike. In saying this, our mantra has been “to finish strong”!  As Paul says in 2 Timothy 4:7, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith”, we desired to do the same. We pushed hard to finish the last 27km stretch over the last day, with each team member having their own personal moments of victory along the way, we arrived safely at our final destination exhausted from pushing ourselves.
 
We thank you for your support and prayers.
God Bless 
FTLT students  
 
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