Circle: South Western Districts

Branch: Still Bay

Portfolio: Health

Convenor: Elaine Grobler

Reporter: Carol Scott

Date of meeting: 11 June 2024


 Piet Geldenhuys’s Testimony

Piet Geldenhuys is a young gentleman who had a prosperous life ahead of him. He was the son of a reputable sheep farmer of Riversdale, Head Boy at high school in grade 12, he achieved as a sportsman studied at Stellenbosch. He married a lovely lady and moved to Leeu Gamka area where he farmed Merino Sheep. Unfortunately, after a short marriage of 1 year, his life took a destructive turn when he became addicted to crystal methamphetamine, commonly known as Tik, was also addicted to alcohol and became a drug dealer.

Piet was addicted to alcohol and drugs for 22 years. His encounter with drugs started when he was 18 years old and became rehabilitated at 42 years old. He has been clean for 5 years, where he has not touched ‘Tik’ or alcohol for the last 5 years. The road to recover was not an easy path, however Piet loves the Lord and testified that if it was not for our Father God, he would never had recovered.

Piet had reached rock bottom, he realized that he was dying, he was divorced, caused trauma to his family, he was jailed and was running from gangster group to another. He was in a poor state of health, weighing 56kg. He showed us the belt he was wearing. It was noticeable how thin he was from the holes in his belt compared to the holes in the belt that he is currently using. He knew that the only way to recover was through Jesus and cried out for help. He started reading the Bible, had read it through three times, but felt as if reading the Bible was not helping. He felt he was not free of drugs, he would stop for two weeks and relapse. Again. There were times when he would sleep for 48 hours and stay awake for the same amount of time.

During this bad time, he was visiting his parents, when two gentlemen from Mossel Bay arrived saying that they were there to pray for him. He was not happy with the situation, he excused himself to visit the bathroom and stayed there for over two hours. When he eventually came out of the bathroom, these two men were still waiting to pray for him. They again advised that they were there to pray for him. They began praying for him. The more they prayed over him, the more the thought you can pray as much as you like. When I leave here on Sunday I will be back on the “Tik” and will continue with my lifestyle, however this did not happen He said that it was like “’n VONK het in my siel onstaan.” From that day he stopped using drugs and alcohol.

I was clean for 4-6 months before agreeing to go to a Rehabilitation Centre for 21 Days. It was important to find peace within myself and only Jesus could give it to me. The realization that only He is my Saviour and my Maker.

His parents had a court order against him, to force him to go to rehab, Piet shared his experiences and feelings during the three weeks in the Rehab. The programme follows a week-to-week group and individual therapy. Patients come and go after each week, so one learns and hears of many other addict’s addictions. He was happy that he had already stopped taking drugs by the time he went to rehab, so he did not go through withdrawal symptoms while in Rehab. One aspect that he was not happy with was that the patients in the Rehab did not refer to Jesus. This was due to the addicts having different religions, so the therapist referred to Higher Powers.

He gave us some pointers that can help family and friends when dealing with addicts and those who have recovered.

  • Tough Love
  • Do not blame someone else or your upbringing for the life you chose to lead.Take responsibility for your actions. He has other siblings, who were never tempted to expose themselves to drug abuse.
  • Do not put the person in a”bubble”
  • Do not blame the friends you had, as he decided to lead to drink alcohol and take drugs.
  • Put your trust in God and pray as prayers are never in vain.
  • Dual-Diagnoses.Pyschiatric problems must be treated with rehabilitation treatment.


Tips on living life after your rehabilitation, ensuring that you stay on the straight path

  1. Live on day at a time.Rehabilitation is a hard road to follow. Every hour, every day, every week etc until you reach a year or years is a reward for your recovery. You need to know that you reach milestone is an achievement. Piet thanks Jesus for his help.
  2. Live in the moment
  3. Integrate in society, important to work.
  4. Be thankful for every day, live one day at a time and set milestones
  5. 5. What people say and think is not important.
  6. Walk with the Lord, he leads you to where you need to he and knows what is good for you. Mark 8 verses 30 -38. He knows what is good for you.

Piet loves the Lord. He testified that if it were for the Lord’s intervention and prayer he would have never been rehabilitated. He also said that he knows that he will not relapse, as he lives with the Lord who always protects and guides him, although he still does struggle at times. Every day is a day further from where he was.