I met a man who made me cry.

Cry because never had I felt more cemented in what my reason for being was as that time I spent speaking with this man.

I’d heard about his work- read a few media articles about him- and yet when I met him I found a story more incredible than I’d ever imagined.

Various media platforms had interviewed him and nowhere had I seen the remarkable story, of his life, that he shared with me.

It was a story of courage, passion, inspiration, survival, determination, perseverance, redemption, salvation and love. Exactly the story my show Dream BIG seeks out.

After we spoke I went back to my car and cried.

In that moment I felt God.

I felt an inexplicable flood of love and affirmation as I realised with such conviction that what I’d been assigned through my work was much bigger than me- it was bigger than anything I’d ever imagined. This was God using me- using my talents and using everything I’d ever been through in my life to produce life that would impact others all over the world.

And not just through Dream BIG but in my writing, in my speaking engagements– in everything I’d allow God’s power and love to flow through and empower.

This past week has been quite something for me- a very emotional week.

I’ve felt happiness and joy that just makes me shake my head in disbelief because finally, finally, I’m beginning to get a sense of God’s love in my life.

I didn’t come to this place only because I chose to follow my heart and do what I love- I got to this place because I began to discover that God loved me.

When I started this blog my desire was to share the many remarkable principles I was discovering and experiencing about what made successful people (and businesses) so.

Never did I intend to share my life on these pages- and it was never really my intention to share my faith either. But now… now it’s increasingly harder to do my work, or share aspects of my work without talking about my own personal life and my faith.

Just over a year ago I would’ve died.

I’d been through bouts of depression before but the depression that gripped me last year was something else.

It wrapped its fat claws around my neck until breathing- just breathing- was hard for me.

There were times I’d catch myself feeling as though I were suffocating- I’d stop whatever I’d be doing and consciously take deep breaths.

I’d realise I hadn’t been breathing properly- literally. It was madness!

I wept often.

The coming of morning terrified me because each time I woke up I was overwhelmed by panic and anxiety- I didn’t know how I would manage, yet, another day.

Sometimes, because we speak of death so lightly these days, we don’t understand the depth of sorrow and seriousness with which a person may say, “I just want to die.”

That time of my depression last year… All I wanted to do was die.

I felt it was the only way to stop the sense of deep loneliness, emptiness, hopelessness, rejection, uselessness, pain, helplessness, exhaustion and loss I felt.

Saying I was miserable would be a huge understatement.

I guess even in that chaotic state I knew I couldn’t take my own life- I had a tiny, minuscule, amount of faith to keep me from that- but more than even my faith what compelled me to get out of bed and trudge through another day was my son- for his sake I could not just give up- I couldn’t fathom my son growing up without his mom- And so I kept trying. Trying to make sense of my life. Trying to get better. Trying to claw myself out of the pit I’d sunk into.

So having gone through that you can imagine the jubilation with which I live now actually experiencing a full life, filled with purpose, joy and love.

One of the first steps I took to getting better was the choice to abandon things I felt were contributing to my depression.

When I started to do this things began to turn around quicker than I thought they would.

By the time this New Year had come around I was in a better place. But there were still chunks of me that were falling apart- I would still experience really bad lows- I was still struggling to breakthrough to this awesome life I knew I was meant to live.

And then I started hearing about God’s grace toward me. That begun to free parts of me I didn’t even know had been bound.

The more I learned the truth about God’s grace, love and His true Heart toward me- feelings and accusations of not being good enough- of not being worthy- of having to earn love- of having to perform to be accepted- all that fell away like leaves in autumn- The Hannah I’d always dreamed of being was being birthed.

And then I discovered the truth of not being alone- not because of the people around me but because God Himself had adopted me- birthed me as His very own child and placed me in His family.

All my life I’d carried a deep solitude that grew worse in my early twenties and got progressively worse over the years.

Something broke this year as for the first time that solitude was lifted- and finally I found out that I too belonged.

And now I’m in the space of love- God’s love for me. I’m discovering more and more how much He loves ME.

Someone said the other day that God looked at us (at me) and then at His Son- He had to choose who He would spare- and He chose to spare me (us).

I’d heard about such things all my life- but now I truly get it.

Now I can call God: ABBA, Daddy! He is filling my life and healing me in parts so broken I could never ever have had the courage to tell you about them.

Here’s what I know for sure- when we live doing work we hate- we die.

Work, personal life and faith cannot be separate things for us who believe.

I’m not saying your work has to be in ministry- your work could be teaching, or lawyering or nursing or building or drawing or singing or dancing or designing or engineering or Mommying or Daddying or just finishing your schooling at this stage- no matter what gifts you’ve been given, when you do them from a place of God’s love for you- you will find joy you never dreamed possible.

The healing I’m going through in my personal life is being reflected in my work- I get messages from people, some I’ve never met, telling me how much my work is impacting their lives- what so many don’t know is how my work is changing my own life.

When you’re doing work you were meant to do- work you love- you will find that it impacts your life beautifully.

Our gifts are meant to bless us first and then others.

If your work doesn’t bless you- you need to re-think…

As a young girl I’d always felt as though whatever God would “call me” to do, whether I liked it or not, I’d have to accept my assignment and fulfill “His Purpose” for my life.

If you’ve ever thought like that then you too, like I have, need to embark on a journey to discover how much God loves you.

God’s assignment for you is the desire of your heart. It’s something you love, something that brings life to you and it’s something that makes your eyes light up when you just think about it- it makes you want to soar when you speak of it- It’s something you’ve dreamed of doing for many many years… that’s  God’s assignment for you. And when you do it you will feel loved and honoured and you’ll wonder how You- little, ordinary, You could be chosen to do something so spectacular.

This has been my experience.

I’m alive, truly alive, because God loves me.

Where once I dreaded managing through another day because of the vast emptiness I had inside, now my days excite me- I love mornings because I can’t wait to see more of God’s splendour and favour in my life- my future is exciting because I know that everything I can think- anything I can imagine- God’s plan, and what will eventually happen in my life is exceedingly and abundantly more massive than my most gigantic dream.

Live. Allow true love. Be alive. It’s why you’re here.

A love breakfast

On November 30 I’ll be speaking at the launch of Gemstones  Teen Pregnancy Crisis Centre.

I’ll be supporting the Gemstones founder who’s also my friend Jennifer Swanepoel.

Jennifer’s story is an amazing one of courage, tenacity, determination and love.

Jen had her first child at sixteen- but boy did she just buckle down and decide to be a rocker mom to her little boy.

I’ve known her for years and what a dedicated, awesome, mom she is.

And now the little boy she birthed seventeen years ago is a strong, beautiful, super-talented, young man- and I can just see how her eyes light up when she talks about her children.

Jen started Gemstones because she believes that if she could do what she did- then imagine the possibilities for so many other teens who are in the place now that she was in 17 years ago?

With the right support Jen knows that these young women can still finish their schooling and still do great things in their lives.

And that’s what her work with Gemstones is all about:  Showing these precious young women that each of them is indeed precious- they are Gemstones.

Jen wants to remind them that they have not been forgotten- and what may seem like the end of their world is actually the beginning of an awesome journey if they will just allow the courage within them to shine.

I’m so proud of Jen for doing this.

Proud because she’s been talking about Gemstones for years and now she’s stepping on the water and just going for it.

I cannot in this one post tell you how those waters are just parting for her- but she had to step out in faith.

So I’m asking women to come and celebrate one of our own doing something spectacular in following their dreams.

Moms bring your daughters- they’ll be so blessed!

Jen’s asked me to speak at the event so I’ll be sharing with you some of the juicy, incredible, principles I’ve been coming across that make successful people successful.

I’ll also be talking about the fullness that awaits us when we live a passionate life.

It’ll be an awesome morning- a feast of love!

Tickets are R100 and include scrumptious eats.

None of this is for profit.

All proceeds go to next year’s education of two young women already in the Gemstones program.

You can email me at  for tickets.

Or contact Jennifer directly on  082 822 9754 or

Tickets really are selling fast because I believe women who are hearing Jen’s story just want to be something this fantastic- so please if you do want to attend book early.

The event will be on the West Rand and starts at 10am, November 30.


Hannah Viviers is the Creator and Host of the Dream BIG TV Show and the author of

You can read her blog at


The problem with Love…

Seven years ago, today, I said Yes. Seven years ago, today, he said I do.

There’ve been storms. Major storms. Sunshine. Much Sunshine. Tears. Hugs. Laughter. Discovery. Rejection. Togetherness. Solitude. It’s been a crazy seven years. And every day I am so grateful that we survived. That we’ve thrived. That we’re here.

As the time to this day drew closer I was thinking of what I’d like to share about us. This man who I love. This incredible human being who loves me. And the life we’ve created together. And one thing kept coming to mind to share- the secret to what’s made us so happy. Well it’s no secret- hehehehehheheheh… (as I rub my hands together 🙂 ) it’s open info for anyone and everyone who wants to receive it.

After seven years of being married here’s what I know about marriage- very little. I laugh when I think of how little I know about love and relationships.

A few days ago I reunited with a friend I hadn’t seen in about nine years. She wanted to know how I was. How I’d met my husband. What our life had been like so far… As I told her part of our life- at one point I was on the verge of tears talking about some of the times we’d allowed each other to see our brokenness.

It seems as though when we come into love, sometimes, most times, we come wounded. We come with events of the past: hurts and expectations and so many other good things too but it’s almost as though the negatives are highlighted far much more than the goods.

When we first meet we’re in love. Something happens in our heads- chemicals fire crazily, our hearts pump something far yummier than chocolate- and we go absolutely insane!

During that time we love just about everything  about each other. We go easy on each other- allow mistakes and forgive easily… and then a little time passes and it’s almost as though something else takes over- I dare say we become children again- each one of us expecting from the other what we wished we’d received as kids: complete and unconditional love, acceptance and attention.

We stop seeing the amazing that made us fall in love with each other in the first place – instead we see all the imperfections of our brokenness in each other. And we blame and accuse and before we know it – the flaming passion we started out with dwindles and we grow cold and hard and hurt and bitter and instead of growing in love we beginning resenting each other.

We realise that once upon a time we had a dream. In our dream we would meet this wonderful person who’d make our world Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory- filled with yummy delights and lots of fun. How could it be then that the person who made us believe that they could create this factory of bliss ended up being the villain in our dream? How could it be that this person who promised love and adoration could be the one person to hurt us more than we thought we could hurt?

And then the search begins. The search to find out how it went wrong. And how to fix it. We blame the other person for it going  wrong and we loathe ourselves for being so stupid as to fall for a childish dream.

And/or we blame ourselves and think only if we were better- so we frantically try to improve ourselves to become what we think we should be to please our partner- so that they’ll be happy then we’ll be happy and everything will be fixed…

That doesn’t pan out so we pursue other remedies.

We look for answers in therapy, or books, counselors and pastors, friends and family, we turn to booze, work, pills or worse. And then sometimes we’re lured by the sweet words and looks of another and before we know it we’ve sunk to selling our souls to the deep betrayal of giving ourselves and our bodies to someone else- the brokenness deepens and we’re nowhere closer to living the dream we once lived- now we’re worse, rawer than before, bitter and life becomes a pile of hot, steaming, poo.

I believe that marriage is perhaps the most important relationship we will ever have with another human being.

The joy of it is not only in having bliss but in the security of being able to break down in a safe place.

One of the things I so honour about my husband is that he has been a safe place for me to break down in.

For years I went through deep solitude. I’d have family and friends around me and still I’d go through depths of loneliness that made absolutely no sense to me.

When I got married I thought the loneliness would disappear- for the most part it just got worse.

I explained it to my husband once- he said it sounded as though I was describing abandonment. Ok, I thought to myself, so my “thing” had a name but why was it there?!

At times the feeling would plunge me into bouts of depression- and then another feeling begun to accompany this sense of solitude: I started to feel unloved.

I knew that my husband supported me. I felt that on some level perhaps  he cared for me. But I felt certain he didn’t love me.

Without being fully aware of it I’d initiated a quest to “make” him love me. I wanted to be shown  love and I guess I must have decided that he was the one to show it to me.

Looking back now I can see how messed up I was. I may have looked absolutely gorgeous as I walked down the aisle- but under that wonderful dress and the incredible hair and make-up was a frightened girl. Under that grown, beautiful woman, was a child searching for complete and utter unconditional love, acceptance and attention.

For the most part we come to each other broken. It is a massive mistake to expect healing from the person we marry. Because. Simply. Put. Healing. Will. Not. Come. From. Them. Period.

So perhaps you may think that things got better when I came into some deep realisation of who I was, had begun to appreciate how fantastic my husband was and had come to see life as a gift… blah, blah, blah-  No.  Let’s just get that out of the way. It didn’t happen that way at all.

I don’t know how other couples make their marriages work. I don’t have a list of steps and tips to finding the right person or creating an incredible partnership. But I can tell you this- the game changer for us was not our love for each other but… God’s love for us.

My husband’s a pretty incredible guy. He has been from the beginning. But for the bulk of our marriage I lost sight of what an honourable man he was.

I saw him as the source of my unhappiness. And blamed him for it.

Then there came a time I realised that I was accusing and blaming him every chance I got.

And then  I realised that there was another person who did that constantly. his whole life was about accusing us. his whole being was about condemning us and pointing out things that made us feel we were wrong, unloved and unworthy. he was (is) the filthiest thing that has ever been… And I realised that every time I accused or blamed my husband or put him under condemnation I was in essence partnering with the greatest evil the world had ever known!

But even when I grasped this it was still hard to break the destructive habit of laying blame. And the downward spiral continued.

And finally dear friend- here’s where it gets good…

As Grace would have it- one day I bumped into the teachings of Joseph Prince and his ministry of the Grace of God.

As I listened to God’s grace and love for me- I found myself partnering with the most wonderful Man who had ever lived: The God who created all the earth. The God who loved me and loved my husband.

I remember a time I was so angry, so resentful and so bitter toward my husband and hearing God clearly tell me: “Hannah love my son.”

I fumed at that request. I wanted him  to love me!  Isn’t that what the Bible taught: “Husbands  love your wives”!  In any case, my excuse was that after some of what we’d been through I felt empty and tired and unable to love. So there. God.

But what I knew in my head was that I could  love my husband as I should if I just opened up my heart to the fullness of God’s love. I knew in my head that if I allowed God to come into our relationship things would be different and I  would be different. But all that hadn’t sunk into my heart yet.

I knew that I was messed up. I knew I was broken. I had an image of the kind of wife I wanted to be- but even though I knew how – I couldn’t do it.

But as I listened to Joseph tell me over and over… and over again how much God loved me, and how gracious He, always, was in His dealings with me- I found myself imparting that same grace toward my husband.

Every time I wanted to open my mouth to give him yet another lecture on this or that I would literally feel a heat rise in me stopping me. I believe that heat was the love of God for my husband. And for me. And for our children. And that heat was protecting me from saying words that would hurt us.

I have many faults. But my husband hasn’t been as keen on pointing them out as I was in pointing his  out. If there is one thing I can say to women it’s what I heard from Joseph: Marry a man who is gracious, merciful and kind. At the very least start there.

I was at a real low when I started listening to Joseph Prince. I had given up on ever feeling loved. I’d decided I’d fill my life with other things that brought me joy-  my work, my kids… but the more I listened to the message of God’s love for me and His incredible grace- the more my heart begun to change. The more hopeful I became.

I was extremely resistant to change in some areas of my life. But try as I might to hold onto the steel enforced walls I’d built God’s love chipped away at them… the more I listened to His ministry of Grace.

Let me tell you there were parts of that wall I scrambled to hold onto- but God wouldn’t let me. Because He could see that the walls were keeping the sunshine out. They were keeping the cold in and the warmth out. Love couldn’t reach me behind those walls.

I tried to hold onto some pieces of brick in my hands- but God would gently hold my hands and pry my fingers open- He wanted to rid me of every crumb of brick, cement and mortar that was keeping me from enjoying the most incredible relationship that can ever happen between two people.

The murk in my eyes begun to clear and I could see my husband for the fantastic guy he was.

And for the first time since we said yes and I do- I finally begun to feel loved by him.

About the feelings of abandonment: One evening in my fellowship I broke down. At first tears started rolling down my cheeks. Then they were gushing out- before I knew it I was sobbing from the depths of my soul.

One of my friends was praying with me and over and over she addressed the feelings of abandonment I’d felt for years. She knew very little of my life and yet she accurately described the feelings that had plagued me for years. I’d never told her about them.

As she ministered to me she spoke of God’s unconditional acceptance of me. In my head I’d always known He was my “Father” and I was His “child- but that night for the first time I knew it in my heart, in my soul, in my mind – in every part of me.

For the first time ever I knew for sure that I was not abandoned. I was loved. I was His  child. I was not  alone. I was in  His family. Completely  accepted.

A few weeks later I met with my pastor and shared my feelings of deep seated guilt and condemnation that would not go away.

Even though I didn’t know it at the time- I know it now: One of my problems was being conditioned to believe that I had to earn love and acceptance. That I had to be a certain way to be loved. Essentially I felt unworthy of love.

But even if I wasn’t able to articulate this at the time with my pastor- he counselled me and prayed with me- He reminded me of God’s love and that I was not a victim neither was I weak- but strong. He rubbished lies that had been spoken over me and pointed me to how God saw me: Beautiful. Worthy of love. Righteous because of what Jesus had done for me at the Cross-  AND  I didn’t have to do a thing to earn God’s unconditional love, acceptance and attention. He had given it freely.

I left the meeting feeling strong and vindicated.

It was as though every which way I turned there were gigantic billboards shouting God’s love for me.

Every which way I turned there was Jesus saying: “I love you. You are worthy of my love. You (YES YOU!)  are worthy of Love!”

I heard it from Godly messages on TV. I found it as I read the Scriptures. I heard it from my husband (finally). I heard it through my fellowship. I saw it in my children… I felt it each time I expressed my gifts… I was in essence being bombarded by love!

There is tremendous power in being loved. When we know we’re loved we operate differently. And what I’m learning is that sometimes, especially when it comes to marriage, that love doesn’t necessarily come from the other person. It comes from within us.

I know that sounds crazy but from my own life I know that because I felt unworthy of love on the inside, and because I felt unloved in the depths of my being- no matter what my husband did or how much he told me he loved me – I couldn’t receive his love because it didn’t resonate with what was inside of me.

So I can talk yards and yards on this – I already have- but here’s what I’ve discovered about marriage- you can read books, you can go to seminars, you can learn so many things about each other etc etc etc… but for me the real change happened when I found out that I was loved and that I was  worthy of love. And that came from learning about God’s love for me and His grace toward me.

I’ve come across some pretty amazing teachings on marriage but nothing has impacted my marriage more than the message of God’s grace. My marriage would not be what it is without God’s grace.

You can pray for your partner to change, you can pray that you’d change- but until you get in your spirit how much God loves you and how much he loves your partner that change is pretty hard to come by.

I still listen to Joseph Prince every day. And I look out for more teachings on how much Jesus loves me. It’s changing every aspect of my life.

In his teaching called: Christ is the Centre of Happy Marriages,  Joseph said God had the ability to change bland wine into intoxicating, beautiful, wine- in an instant.

So no matter how long things have been bad- when Jesus comes into the picture, He performs a miracle- and in an instant you can have that dream you once dreamed of.

And you forget the bad.

At the beginning I talked about us having gone through some pretty rough storms- I can honestly tell you that it’s really hard for me to remember those storms now. It feels as though we’ve always, every single day of our marriage, being crazy in love as we are now.

christ is the centre for happy marriages

I don’t remember why I would ever have been mean to my husband or why I’d point fingers at things I didn’t approve of about him. Because now, I look at my husband and I’m brought to tears at what a fantastic husband he is.

He too is a huge fan of Joseph’s teachings and tells me his new quest in life is to truly comprehend how much Jesus loves him. It’s sure to be a life-long quest. I can already see the impact it’s had on him.

I bless God for that and He really does deserve all the credit on this one.

I really am overwhelmed by what an incredible husband my guy is to me and how blessed my children are to have him as a father.

I can tell my son: “Boy, that’s the kind of man you should aspire to be.” And I can tell my daughter: “Girl, that’s the kind of man you should marry.”

The problem with love is that we haven’t been taught the truth about it.

It is my prayer that, each day, we would uncover and discover more and more beautiful truths about this incredible, powerful, Force.

May this Force be with you- now and always.



You can catch Joseph Prince on TBN and GodTV (in South Africa).


Related Posts:

Your man can’t fix you

Diary of a Loved Woman

What God says about interracial marriage

Why did you start this?

I took the week off to regain perspective on our Dream BIG project.

Most times when we start something there’s a huge surge of energy. We’re excited. We can’t wait. We’re positive. There are no limits. We are certain of success. We’re committed. We throw ourselves wholeheartedly into it… but that’s usually at the beginning.

Then once we’ve started we come up against things that dampen our energy, slowly grind away at our resolve, dissolve our certainty of success, discourage us and make us question if this  quest we embarked on was the right one for us.

We start wondering if we got the vision right- or maybe, we say to ourselves, this dream was not for right now…

Then sometimes we get a huge push and in that push we receive another tremendous amount of energy to make our project work.

We’re energetic again but this time the energy’s a little different… And sometimes we start to make compromises. And sometimes getting ahead in the project becomes more important than the reason we started the project in the first place. Numbers become more important than people. We begin to act of character and do things that we tell ourselves are “the ways of business” so we can propel our project forward- but deep in our hearts we know we’ve lost our way.

Deep in our hearts we know that the reason we started in the first place is no longer first- something else has taken over: The innate desire every human possesses: The desire to succeed.

At all cost though?

Or sometimes the challenges get too much and we remember a time when worrying about bringing clients in was someone else’s job- so we go back to seeking the comfort of a job. Because the reality is that starting something is hard. Really hard.

During one of our Dream BIG interviews the guest said something that stuck with me above everything he said in the time he spoke with me: “Businesses don’t make money. Businesses make product. The product makes the money.”

When the numbers become more important than why  we started what we started then we’ve lost our way. And consequently one thing is for absolute sure: We will never be satisfied or happy no matter how massive our numbers get.

But when the reason we started retains its position of priority and importance we will find joy even when the numbers aren’t great and even when they only slowly trickle in. Because when we build with purpose and meaning then we’re building something that will last. For a really long time.

I took the week off because I’d started to feel that my heart toward Dream BIG was changing… And I felt that this wonderful assignment that had landed on my plate was being compromised- and I was putting myself in danger of no longer being trusted with it.

Can you be trusted with the dreams that’ve been placed in your heart?

Can you fulfill them with integrity?

There is a business that has stood out for me above and beyond many I’ve dealt with. It’s BlueSpot Water Purifiers. A while ago the company was nominated for a Talk Radio 702 Small Business Award.

I wanted to shout to the mountain tops what amazing service I’d received from the company- from Jaco in particular.

Often when I drink a cool glass of water from our purified water tap- I think of how Jaco blessed my family.

He didn’t preach to me or do anything outside of what his services promised- all he did was come into our home and do his job in an excellent manner. He did it with such honour that I can’t stop singing his praises. Jaco has created not only a customer in me but a fan.

I tell others about his business.

Jaco’s attitude toward his work reminds me that when we labour in love the numbers sort themselves out.

I read a portion of Scripture in Thessalonians this week that talked about labour being prompted by love.

I realised that was all that has ever been required of me in my work- for my labour to be prompted by love.

Here’s what I can tell you I know for absolute certain- if you operate what you’ve started out of love- you’ll be amazed at how what you started will exceed everything you hoped for it.

I know it sounds absolutely crazy – but don’t be so bogged down with the bottom line- get into the business of creating stuff that will benefit your clients. Keep them in mind. Care for them. Dare to love them. Be generous.

Have you ever seen how a person who feels loved by a company they did business with speaks about that establishment? As opposed to the businesses that are clearly in it for a quick buck? This is not soft stuff people- this is granite for the astute business mind.

If you’ve started something keep reminding yourself why you started. Guard it in your heart.

I wrote an email to a dear friend that, if you’ll allow, is my prayer for you too:

I see you flying around the country- around the world even with your business- employing people and being a business to be reckoned with. I know you see that of yourself too- focus on that dream and then lay everything else at the feet of the Father.

Yes there are things we must know and do in business but what I’m finding dear friend is it all starts and ends with God.

So I pray that in this time He would strengthen you in your resolve to make this business work.

I pray that He would send people who will encourage you even more and keep reminding you of the greatness that is in you and in your ability to create something fantastic, lucrative and lasting.

I pray that He would open doors for you that will blow your mind and that He would remind you daily how much He loves you and wants you to succeed.

Dream BIG – because no matter how BIG your dream is- God will surpass and exceed your every expectation.


–          Hannah