Nick Vujicic truly inspires our Junior Reporters

Nick Vujicic truly inspires our Junior Reporters

Nick Vujicic, the Australian preacher and motivational speaker who was born without arms or legs, was back in Hong Kong this month. Young Post organised an exclusive interview with Vujicic for our Junior Reporters on December 14 at a restaurant in Central. Here they recount their experiences.

 

Full transcript of the interview by Hetty Lee and Hollie Leung

Karen Chau: You said in your video that being disabled means you can’t do something. What can you not do and who in this world, to you, constitutes as “disabled?”

Nick Vujicic: Many people who have a disability may not be able to do what other people do, but maybe have other abilities. Scientifically, it is proven that if someone has a hearing impairment, they have other senses that are even sharper, like touch. The people who don’t have sight can actually hear better. So as far as ability versus disability [goes], I know that with my disability, there’s nothing good about it, but at the same time, you can change your obstacles into opportunities.

Now, that’s focused my ability to be more courageous, more confident, I’ve now trained to be a speaker and I don’t know who I’d be if I had arms and legs. I don’t know what I’d be doing. I mean, who knows—I might have been a drug-addicted, gambling-addicted rock star for all I know, if I had arms and legs. But having no arms and no legs has given me the ability to be thankful for what I have; it doesn’t mean that I’m a superhero or that I am always happy—I go through ups and downs as well. As far as your question goes—that’s with disability and ability—the second part of your question was?

Junior Reporter: Who in this world is “disabled?”

NV: See, you can have arms and legs, and have everything on the outside but still be broken on the inside. I think fear is the biggest disability of all. There are rational fears, and then irrational fears.

When I was born without arms and legs, my parents were thinking, well, what kind of life was I going to have. Now, that’s a good fear to sort of ponder on, and to try and work out something good. But the fear that I’m talking about is the fear of what people think of you, the fear of failing, the fear of being alone. Those fears, I believe, are disabling on the inside. You can have arms and legs, but still look at yourself and say, “Oh, I wish I were different,” or “I wish I had more,” or “I wish I were smarter,” or “I wish I wish I got a better job,” or “I wish I had more friends,” or “I wish I had more money.”

You know, all these sort of things that we hope for on the outside actually never heal you on the inside. And so it’s the truth of 3 things: 1) the truth of your value, 2) the truth of your purpose, and 3) the truth of your destiny.

Your value is not determined [by] how you look. Your value is not determined [by] what you can do, or how smart you are. It’s not necessarily as well what you end up having or what you end up achieving. The question for me every day is, “Did I do my best today?” That is the best thing to ask yourself. It’s not, “Did I do what you did and did you do what I did?” It’s about “Did I achieve what I know was meant to be for my life?” So set your dreams high, and set high goals, and if it’s meant to be, it’s going to happen, and if not, be happy with who you are, be thankful for what you have, and do your best.

That gives you the 3 greatest things in my life. Once you know the value and the purpose and the destiny of your life, then you have love, joy and peace. And that’s something that money cannot buy. Love, joy, and peace. Thank you so much for your question.

Sara Ku: So now you’re working for charity and going to different places around the world; are there any other goals in your life that you want to achieve?

NV: Absolutely. You know, I’m very thankful for the opportunity I have as a speaker—I’ve been able to speak 1500 times across 34 countries, I’ve met 4 presidents, spoken in front of 5 congresses, there’re about 1 billion people who know about me in the world, through YouTube, media, newspapers, reporters—so I’m very, very excited about that.

My goal is to travel less, because I’ve been travelling a lot, but reach millions of people at the same time. So releasing a book really makes sense. So website and weekly blogging is what I want to work on someday, where people can be encouraged every single week, and feel like I’m in there living room to motivate them, like a personal motivational speaker.

So my goal is to reach as many people as possible, with a message of hope, but at the same time, I really believe that there is a greater cause that we can all do in giving back to society. I think, if we all did our part, this world would be a very different place.

When you want to see hope in this world, you have to be hope. When you don’t have a friend, be a friend. You want to see generosity, be generosity. You want to see more patience in the world, be patience. You want to see more integrity, be integrity. It starts with you. You want to see schools not teasing any more, you’re the one who stops teasing. You’re the one who stands up for the one being teased. The difference starts with you. Never in the world has there ever been so many hungry people. There are a billion people hungry today. Even with all the billions of dollars that went into needy places around the world, there needs to be a sustainable project. And so I think that inspiring the next generation to support sustainable projects that give back society around the world is key.

There’s such a multiplier effect; if you have 10 million people giving one dollar towards a charity, that’s 10 million dollars a month—you know, whether it [goes] to clothing the naked, or feeding the poor, or medicating the sick…So I believe we need to understand as the next generation [we need] to discover the power of unity, to discover the power of the multiplication factor, and that if we come together, we can really make a difference.

So my goal is to rally up many people around the world who really want to make a difference and want to see change in the world, who are ready to be the change, who are ready to challenge themselves, who know that if you’re not generous with a hundred dollars, you’re not going to be generous with a thousand dollars. And if you’re not generous with a thousand dollars, you’re not going to be generous with 10 million dollars. Generosity is in the DNA of your character. So whether you have a little or you have a lot, generosity has to be a part of your life.

And one of the other reasons why I love to encourage people to give back is because when you have a broken heart, I’ve realized that one of the biggest things you can do when you have a broken heart is to heal somebody else’s heart. When you have a need, there’s something that happens so beautifully if you can help someone else get what they need. So when the clouds in your storm don’t part, you can still carry someone else through their storm.

So in my first chapter of my book, I met a little boy with no arms and no legs. I didn’t get a miracle—I wished I’d met someone else just like me, someone who I could look up to, someone who I could be encouraged [by]. I never got that person, but I could now be that person for this little boy. And if I was born with no arms and legs to bring a positive message, to bring DNA of character, of integrity, helping people to dream big and never [give] up, then my mission in life is done, because all of that is founded on love. My love for you will encourage you. My love for you will make me encourage you on a daily basis as much as I can, through my websites, or through my DVDs, or my books. So because I’ve been loved unconditionally, I love unconditionally. And with that unconditional love that you receive, you can love others.

And I think, if I can’t change a problem, at least I’m going to try and do my best to encourage you through it. So that’s why friendships are important. That’s why I believe love is so important—because time doesn’t heal anything. See my pain? I have no arms and no legs. Time couldn’t heal my broken heart, but love did. Could love change my body? No. But love could change my heart. In knowing my circumstance wouldn’t change, I know that I’m still here for a purpose, and my heart can still be healed, and to never give up, because I’m not alone.

Elaine Yu: How can you show your love to God?

NV: This is the beautiful thing—when you realize that God loves you just the way that you are, when you see in Jeremiah 21:11 that God has a plan, hope and a future for your life, you may not understand what God has for you, but look at what he’s given you.

The biggest 3 things that God has given me is faith in him, to live for him, and to know him; the 2nd thing is my family and the 3rd thing is my mission—to love God and to love your neighbor as yourself. It’s always about love. Why? So that people can know that God loves them no matter what, that when you pray for a bad situation to turn around and that bad situation doesn’t turn, that God loves you, that He can let you know that He is going to carry you through. He’s going to comfort you. You may not understand why He lets you go through pain today, but He has a plan.And today I can see that God had a plan, but it took many years for me to see.

So you take one step at a time in faith, believing in something that you do not see. And I couldn’t do that on my own; I needed to pray. I needed to ask God to comfort me. I asked God, “Teach me 3 things. Teach me how to pray, teach me how to thank you, and teach me how to trust you.” When you can learn how to pray, and you learn how to thank God, and you learn how to trust God and say, “God, I don’t know what you have for me today, but I’m going to trust you; this is a difficult day for me, but help me today,” that is the miracle—to know that I am not alone.

Because I have the unconditional love from God, and I know that I’m not alone, and knowing that God has a plan for me, that He can use even the worst parts of my life for good, that’s when a miracle happens. That’s when it doesn’t matter if a storm comes, because God will give you wings to fly above the storm. And when the clouds in your storm do not part, you can still carry someone else through their storm. And so that’s a beautiful thing.

If God doesn’t change your circumstance, He will change your heart. How do I love God? By keeping His commandments, by trying to do what he wants me to do, by loving my neighbor as myself (the greatest thing). You have to love yourself, though, before you can love your neighbor as yourself. You need to know the truth of your value. Every girl who comes to God is a daughter of God. God becomes your Father. God is the King of kings and the Lord of lords. If God’s a king, and you’re a daughter of a king, this makes you a princess. See, you’re royalty. Us men? We’re warriors in God’s army.

You don’t need arms and legs to love God, you don’t need arms and legs to love your neighbor as yourself, and you don’t need arms and legs to stand in front of the gates of hell and redirect traffic. So that’s pretty cool. Thank you for your question.

Miranda: Is there anything you wish you have tried?

NV: I want to go and try skydiving. I’ve done scuba diving, 30 meters deep, that was pretty fun. I’ve been surfing, golfing, fishing, swimming... so that’s pretty cool. I want to go to space one day. And I want to drive a car with a joystick. One day I’m sure that will happen.

JR: If you were given arms and legs for a day what would you do and why?

NV: I would hold and hug the people I really really love- my family and the ones that are close to me. I would run, I want to know how it feels to run out of energy running. I would swim, I would probably ride a bike, drive a car… that’d be really cool to do.

Janet Tam:I know you love swimming very much and I just want to know how you managed to swim and why do you enjoy it so much?

NV: When I was 18 months old, my dad would teach me how to float by putting his hand under my head, and I would float in the bathtub. And then one day he moved his hand. He knew my body was pretty light, because I have no arms and no legs to weigh me down. And so with the air in my lungs, I could float. When he moved his hand away I was scared but I actually learned how to float at a very young age. At six years old, that was when I started swimming on my own. I can float and I paddle with my foot. So as long as I have air in my lungs I can float. But if you see me swimming, don’t make me laugh, because I’ll start sinking.

Alex Chan: If God gave you a choice, would you want your arms and legs back? Why or why not?

NV: I would leave it totally up to God. See, God will have a plan either way. But, I don’t think I would be famous if I had arms and legs. I don’t think you’d be wanting to ask me any questions if I had arms and legs. I don’t think I’d be meeting the president of Mexico on 5th January if I had arms and legs. So, because I have no arms and no legs, I can actually influence more people.

If God wanted to give me arms and legs, he still can do it. It’d be pretty cool if he give me arms and legs, right? Imagine right now I’m 28 years old (I just turned 28 a couple of weeks ago), imagine if everyone knows me in the world without arms and legs and ‘Bang!’ arms and legs pop out. That’d be pretty cool, right? But what if he never did that? That’s still okay.

So either way, I know God’s plan is perfect. And so, I am not waiting for arms and legs. Do I sound like I was thinking about arms and legs? Yeah, but what would you rather have? Being an influence to hundreds and millions of people? Or arms and legs? God’s plan is always better than mine. I don’t do it for fame, I don’t do it for money, I am trying to do as much as I can for the world, in 34 different countries so far, to try bring hope in any way possible.

Dhruv Singh: Did you ever feel there was no hope?

NV: There was a stage in my life where I believe that. When I was at school, I got teased a lot. And when you star hearing “You’re ugly, you’re ugly, you’re ugly,” you start believing you’re ugly. When you hear the voice in your head “ Oh, God’s forgotten you, you’re alone, you’re alone, you’re alone,” you start believing you’re alone.

At age 8, I told my mom I wanted to commit suicide. At age 10, I actually tried. I went into a bathtub, and I tried to drown myself. And I turned over 3 times in the bathtub. The first two times I rolled over in the bathtub I thought I was doing a good thing because I felt like I would never have a job, I’d never have a wife, even if I get married I can’t even hold my kids when they’re crying, I’m not going to have a proper education, my parents always have to help me with things, maybe I’m just going to need help all my life, so why should I burden my parents? So I didn’t want to be a burden to my parents. I felt like I could never make them proud. I felt like I could never be anybody, and I couldn’t see it. But just because you can’t see hope doesn’t mean it’s not there. You know the saying ‘you don’t know what’s round the corner’? You’ll never know what’s around the corner until you go around the corner. And there are times in life you don’t have the strength to walk around the corner. But that’s when you ask God to carry you round the corner.

You see, today you can see I’ve not had an easy life. And your life won’t get easier. You can say that I’m suffering a lot, but I’m not. I believe it’s worse being in a broken home than having no arms and no legs. I believe it’s worse losing your loved ones than having no arms and no legs. We all go through pain, but if you give up, you’ll never get through it. There is hope until you give up.

When I was 10 years old, the 3rd time I rolled over in my bathtub, there was only one thought that saved me. And it was the thought of seeing my mom and my dad crying at my grave. And I realized I don’t want to leave my parents with pain, so I decided to stay, and I didn’t know what God have for me. I felt like God has forgotten me. I felt like I was so alone and there was no hope. But at 13 years old, I had my first turning point. My mom and dad always said “Be thankful, be thankful, be thankful.” And there was one story that started to change my life.

There were two turning points in my life and the first turning point in my life was from a newspaper article. And the newspaper article was an inspirational story about a man in a wheelchair. And that’s why I encourage you reporters; you people can really make a difference in people’s lives more than you think. I saw this story and I saw this man in a wheelchair, and I thought, “Wow, maybe I’m not the only one in pain. Maybe I can be thankful for what I do have. Maybe there is hope for me. So that one newspaper article inspired me to be thankful.

That same year, I played soccer with my little foot. I love my little foot. I can type 43 words a minute on a normal computer. And I’ve done a double degree in accounting and financial planning, so that’s how I did my work. But I sprained my foot one day at 13 years old, and I couldn’t use it for three weeks. Let me ask you. How much do you use your arms and legs? A lot, right? That’s how much I use this. Imagine not using your arms and legs for three weeks. That’s how I felt. I felt disabled for the very first time. And so, you got to understand that you got to be thankful for what you have. Do your best, and God will do the rest.

That was the first turning point. The second turning point, and the final turning point for my life was at fifteen years old. And I still didn’t know what God had for me. But I read in John chapter nine, where a man was born blind and no one knew why he was born that way. But Jesus said it was done so that the works of God can be shown, and he healed the blind man. And that day I realized wow, just because a blind man didn’t know what God had in mind, didn’t mean that God didn’t have a plan. Jesus always had a plan for that blind man. Jesus knew that, but the blind man didn’t have to know the detail. So what happened to me that day? I said, “Wow, God, if you got a plan for a blind man, then you have a plan for me. And I don’t know what that plan looks like, I don’t know what it is, I don’t know what it looks like round the corner, but when I have my bad days and when I am weak, please carry me, when I can’t do it myself, please help me one day at a time.”

You don’t know what’s round the corner in your life. You might have your goals or dreams or have a certain job. Dream big! Never give up! And if it’s God’s will, it’s going to happen. If it’s not God’s will that you get that job, maybe God has something better. That is the peace that I have. It’s not in the actual job, it’s not in the actual mission, it’s in the security in knowing that I am doing what God want me to do, in fulfilling my destiny and my purpose. Because I know I am a child of God, hence he can love me, and I can love my neighbor as myself. Why? To bring one more soul to Jesus Christ, that’s why. The fifteen years old me said, “God forgive me of my sins.”

I know the world said all you need to know is the difference between good and evil. Knowing the difference between good and evil is not going to help you. The knowledge of good and evil, the tree of knowledge didn’t help Adam and Eve. It’s not about being good or bad. It’s about coming to the tree of life. I know that I’ll never be perfect, knowing that I am forgiven of my sins, and God has a plan for me, and I know that one day at a time, I am in the construction, I am a working progress, I’m not going to be perfect, I’m not always happy, I’m not righteous, like some, whoever you think I am, but I strive to be what God wants me to be.

You see my foot? Ups and downs, ups and downs, through the down times when you need faith, you can only grow in faith when you exercise in faith. You see, you can only exercise in faith, or have to believe what you don’t see, when you are put in a position where you don’t know what’s going on, you understand? To grow in faith is to grow in a belief in a hope, in something you do not see. To grow in that faith you have to be put in a place where you can’t see much. Then you’re forced to trust in God. When you’re forced to trust in God, you grow in faith. And you see how God’s taken you through the other values, now you can say, “Well, God pulled me through my last problem; he’s going to be with me through this problem.” And that’s the faith journey we have. It’s an uphill climb, but the higher you climb, the more you see. And when you feel like falling, Jesus is standing still by me. That’s the whole message.

Nineteen years old, I spoke in front of 300 teenagers, and I was really nervous. I didn’t know what to say. My palms were sweaty, my knees were shaking, and I had seven minutes of talk. Within three minute, half the girls were crying and one girl in the middle of the room started weeping, and she couldn’t stop crying. And she said, “I’m so sorry, can I come up here and give you a hug?” and in front of everybody she came and she hugged me. And she said, “Thank you, thank you, thank you, no one has ever told me that they love me, no one has ever told me that I am beautiful the way that I am.

That day I came home and I said, “Mom and Dad! I know what I want to be for the rest of my life!” Then they said “Good, finish your school first.” I said, “I want to be a speaker.” They didn’t believe in my dream of being a speaker. But I honored my parents in finishing school, and I still believe that God wanted me to be a speaker, so once I finished my double degree in accounting and financial planning, I started speaking. I didn’t have any invitations in the beginning. But if it’s God’s will, all things are possible. If it’s God’s will, with hard work, attitude is altitude. The better your attitude is, the higher the altitude you can fly.

You know how many invitations foe me to speak I have today? I’ve received thirty thousand emails asking me to speak at their school, or the event, etc. So, that’s been nine years in the making, nine years of hard work. But, if it’s God’s will, and you work hard, and you do it God’s way, it’s going to be good. So, that’s why I became a speaker. Because I knew that when only one person is told that they’re loved, and everything is going to be okay, then it’s all worth it.

Have you seen the ‘Butterfly Circus’? It’s a 20-minute short film that I was acting in. Eight million people have watched it, and seven people I’ve met randomly in the street or on the plane, watched that video and said, “Nick, I was ready to commit suicide, but then I watched that film. And it saved my life.”

You see, if only one person is saved, then it’s all worth it. Do you know how scary it is how many girls suffer from eating disorders? Girls, you are beautiful in your way, just be who you are, do your best. And the boys, you’re the man. You don’t need to be more athletic, you don’t have to be smarter, just be the best you can be. One of the chapters in my book, it’s called ‘Love perfectly the imperfect you’. So that’s what I talk about in my book. That’s why I do what I do- to save one more soul at a time.

Billy Lo: Has anyone inspired you?

NV: My friend, by the name of Phil Toth. I dedicated my book to him because at twenty two years old, his body started having symptoms of a disease called Lou Gehrig's disease, we call it ALS. Muscles, nerves and organs in his body started shutting down bit by bit. You can’t slow it down, you can’t reverse it, and you can’t cure it. People die of this disease. There’s no hope. So, doctors gave him three months to live. He lived another five years. I don’t know what you would do if you got that news. But you know what he did? Soon he couldn’t talk, soon he couldn’t walk, and in the five years he lived, he actually used the latest technology type on the computer with his head and inspired many people who were dying of other diseases as well. He did inspire people who couldn’t get out of their beds. He inspired people! He didn’t feel sorry for himself and he is an inspiration for me. He was a warrior. God used him to save many souls. That was the great inspiration for me.

JR: How are you so profoundly sure that a God exists?

NV: Well apart from physical miracles that I’ve seen in front of me and captured on camera, I’ve seen his grace, I’ve seen his love, and I’ve seen his mercy in my life. I’ve seen it in times when I couldn’t do something on my own, and it’s not just physical disabled things, it’s emotional, it’s spiritual. He’s changed me. He’s changed how I look. Look at my life; he’s changed how my heart looks at different circumstances. I don’t need to swear to be cool. You know how kids and teenagers swear because they want to be cool? I don’t need to swear. I don’t need to try different things my friends try to do to get the world’s approval.

When the world says you’re not good enough, seek second opinion. Come back to the word of God. And that’s the beautiful thing- God says you’re wonderfully and beautifully made. God says I’m an ambassador and I’m the King of the Lord of Lords. And he’s with me. So if you take little steps and little steps and little steps, imagine if I take four hundred little steps, they’re all little steps. You look back and you see “Wow, look how much God pulled me through.”

So maybe look back in your life, and remember the things that God pulled you through. You don’t have answers to all the questions in your life, but at least see what you do have here. Be thankful for what he has given you. I have peace, and I tell you one thing, I have never seen anything that can be compared to the miracle or power of God. How can a woman who’s dying of HIV Aids, and 20 years old in India who was kidnapped at 10 as a sex slave, bought for 700 dollars, who has a child and doesn’t know what is going to happen to the child, how can she have peace? Is it a coping mechanism? No. When you have peace, you have peace. When you have God, you have God on your side. And that’s the difference.

You can’t fake a positive attitude. You can’t forget your pain. You can’t put aside your worries. You can’t drown your mistakes with alcohol. You can’t distract your mind from the pain with drugs, sex and pornography, and then everything is better, no. but with God, he can heal your heart.

JR: How do you keep a pure heart despite all the fame you’re gaining?

NV: I started travelling about 5 years ago. Pride is the first sin of man. Satan said, “Are you really sure God said that about that fruit? If you eat up that fruit, you will know more, you can be like God. The moment we think we are something, the moment we think we don’t need God, is when pride comes in. The moment we put our joy, peace, and security in something else other than God, is the beginning of pride. But when you humble yourself in God, when you say, “God, I can’t heal my heart. God, I can’t change the way I think. I can’t change the bad things in my life, not just what I’m suffering in, but by habits of swearing, of addiction, of whatever it is.” When you come to God, God loves you not because how good you are, but God loves you because you trust him. There is pride in thinking you can do something better. You can’t do anything good without God. That’s the beautiful thing. Because God is love, then with the love of God, I love. Because God gives me his spirit of love, joy, peace, patience, temperance, meekness, kindness, all that. And because God loves, that I now have meaning. You see, you can be a good person, you can be generous, you can be kind, you can be patient, you can have a lot of relationships, and great, then what? Where are you going after 90 years? 90 years is nothing. Do you know that you know that you have hope? Some people say, “Ah, Nick, you are such a great example of reincarnation.” And I said, “Really?” They said, “Yea.” I said, “How do you say that?” They said, “Well, it’s very simple. You have done something bad in your previous life, and that’s why you got punished, but next time, you are going to have a good life.” I said “but how can you prove to me? I haven’t even found the fingerprints of my life today.” This is a thing. I have peace. And people can think in their heads at times, evolution or how do you all come together. You know scientists they say they know how the world began? But even the smartest scientist can’t prove to you why can a bee fly. Do you know that? Physics cannot prove why can a bee fly. You see a bee flying, but you don’t know why. A scientist can’t prove to me how can a bee fly, something that I can see. Why should I trust them in something I haven’t seen? I don’t know if you were there at the beginning of the world, I wasn’t. But I know God was. And I know, God from the beginning of time has a plan for everybody.

One last thing go to www.lifewithoutlimbs.org.hk. And trust me, I love everybody. I love every single person around the world. So, even though I talk about my religion with God and my belief in him, it doesn’t mean I love anybody else less. I just want you to know that. And hopefully people, when they want to ask more about my faith, I share it all. So, get my book, enjoy it, I hope it’s encouragement to you all. I love your questions, they were great, and all the best with your career.

Our junior reporters share their impressions after meeting Nick

Hollie Leung

It was amazing to see Nick in person. Listening to him talk is hard to describe. He is brimming with incredibly deep thoughts. He has faith, hope, love, and so much life despite his disabilities. He told us that we are all beautiful like princes and princesses, daughters and sons of a king and it truly touched me. The bible says after you believe in God, it’s not you who’re living but the spirit of God living through you. I feel like Nick is completely this kind of person and I realised how powerful it can be when you’re in harmony with God and yourself. The most precious thing is his humbleness and complete faith in God. He made me more convinced that God exists.

Billy Lo Ting Nok

I felt very lucky to meet Nick Vujicic. He’s a very unique person. During the interview, we asked a lot about his life. From his eyes, I could see the hope; from his words, I could hear the encouragements; and from his smiles, I could feel his love for others. It’s hard to believe that he ever felt doom and gloom. His optimism made me want to be stronger.

I was particularly moved by these words: “If you want to change someone, then you should be the change. If you want no one tearing, you should stop tearing. If you want everyone smile, you should smile to the others first!” They are forever engraved in my heart. I feel he’s been part of my life, and has changed me to the better. So thank you, Nick!

Janet Tam Ka Wing

Nick was very cheerful and optimistic, and was smiling most of the time. His meaningful words and positive attitude towards life inspired me. At one point he said "attitude is altitude." That means how you view the world will greatly affect your achievements. He also said, "love perfectly the imperfect you". I agree with this because everyone has weaknesses. Sometimes I may complain and grumble if I am not as good as others. But his words motivated me to be gentler with myself. Thanks very much to Young Post for giving me this opportunity!

Alex Chan

Awe spiring, motivational, limbless, these are the three words I would choose to describe Nick Vujicic, one of the greatest motivational speakers alive.

Nick is physically “imperfect”, yet being around him made me feel he was perfect. It felt like he would bring us all in another dimension – a dimension of love, respect and optimism.

He told us many things, about his life, about others, about how he loves all of us unconditionally, just like God loves him unconditionally. He told us that time doesn’t heal, and that only love can heal. He told us that fear was the greatest disability that mankind will ever face, and that if we wanted to see more love in our world, then we should be the love. All these words are wise words, words that I believe in, words I think can change someone.

I will never forget this meeting with Nick. It is stuck in my memory drive somewhere in my brain and heart as one of the most awesome and memorable experiences I’ve ever had.

Candace Shevonne Kwan

When I learned I was going to meet Nick face to face, I was excited, but I had no idea what to expect.

Until then, he was just a famous motivational speaker whom I had seen on slides during lectures, giving spiritual advice and urging people to be thankful. However, today, he was going to be a few meters away… the fact that he would be within reach (literally) was simply surreal. When Nick came to talk to us, he gave us Junior Reporters the freedom to decide on how the interview would be conducted – should we just jump into the interview or should he give us a short summary of his life first?

The interview was fast-paced and covered a wide variety of topics – everything from self-esteem to faith in God to how fast Nick can type (33 words per minute).

Throughout the interview, he gave us advice on how the media and what we read can impact lives. In fact, his first epiphany was triggered by an article about a paralysed man.

When time was up and he had to rush to the next event, he wished us all the best with our careers and gave us each a hug which only strengthened the connection we had with him.

Dhruv Singh

It was a life-time opportunity to meet Nick. The meeting was very inspiring. I learnt to be courageous in life. Nick showed us how to face obstacles in life and never to give up.

He gave us the message of hope and showed us how to be grateful for the blessings in our life. We should not take our talents and gifts for granted but work hard in life. The meeting and interview with Nick, I am sure, would help me in life to look at the things more positively and face life’s obstacles boldly. I feel grateful and inspired.

Elaine Yu

First of all, I have to thank Nick for giving me such an inspiring edification.

Despite the fact that I am a Christian, I am sometimes uncertain about how to love God. Nick reminded me that I don’t have to do anything in order to please God. God’s love is an unearned blessing given to all of us. It’s not work, it’s not prayer that save our soul, we should not make the common mistake of thinking that we can earn His favour. Nick said that he doesn’t need arms and legs to serve and love God, but his heart and soul. Then, I promptly realised that no circumstances can change my love to God, and his love to me. And if I have God by my side, why should I fear? I already got everything, there is nothing I can loose.

Karen Chau

Meeting with Nick was amazing. He is limbless, and yet I felt small and unwise. At first, I was a little scared to see him face to face, but the fear quickly disappeared as he made us full comfortable.

When it was my turn to ask a question, I asked what he cannot do. His answer made me realise I am actually the one disabled: I am the one afraid of being alone, of becoming sick, of what people think of me... Now, every time I encounter difficulties, I recall what Nick said, “Every obstacles God prepared for us are opportunities.” Then I compare my rugged and rocky path with Nick’s and realise it’s nothing. I know God will always carry me through the hardships.

To conclude, seeing Nick makes me learn to be thankful for what I have. I am sure he made every single one of us feel we’re unique.

Sara Ku

I will forever remember 14th December as the day I first met Nick Vujicic. I knew about him because of his YouTube videos, and I was very excited about the interview.

During the interview, Nick reminded us that we have to dream big and never give up, and we have to strive for our goals to achieve them. He also emphasised that we have to bring positive power to the people around us. He said if the cloud in our storm does not pass, we have to help someone else to get over their storm.

What impressed me the most is that Nick is a powerful motivational speaker, and he has a strong faith in God. He has inspired me to be someone who loves and cares for the others, someone who works hard and achieve my goals. Thank you for memorable and meaningful experience!

Miranda Leung

"If God is king, and you’re the daughter of a king that makes you a princess!” was the sentence that struck me most throughout the interview with Nick Vujicic. Although I have never had the five-year-old urge to be a princess, it clearly conveyed his message of love. Love of your neighbours and yourself. His words were comforting and made me feel extra-special, as if I owed it to God, to my parents, to myself to love myself more and to live life to its fullest.

Hetty Lee

"Next time I become consumed by my trivial teen angst,” I resolved, packing my digital voice recorder into my bag after the interview, “I will think of the plight of this man.”

It took me a shorter time than I had expected to get over the general shock of perceiving only a vacuum around the living, breathing Nick Vujicic in which one’s limbs are usually situated, which could not be accounted for by my brain’s stubborn attempts to picture his arms behind his back, since his legs too were nowhere to be seen.

He was dressed smartly, the sleeves of his button-up shirt and trousers tucked neatly inwards; this was the second thing I noticed. What struck me most upon meeting Nick Vujicic, of whom about one billion people know, however, was the serenity and mild curiosity his facial expression conveyed as he looked around at us Junior Reporters.

I wondered at his composure. With impeccable posture he rose in his seat, was helped to a drink of bottled water, and introduced himself in a mellow Australian accent. He answered our questions one by one and the more his story began to unfold, the more passers-by assembled round us and the more fascinated I became. Surely, I thought, if I had been in his place, I would have squandered away my life and wallowed and decayed in my own self-pity. But he was just the polar opposite of this hypothetical me. There he was, travelling to 34 different countries to give 1500 talks, meeting four presidents and speaking in front of five congresses.

So what was it that enabled Nick Vujicic to accomplish all this, and what made him so different from anyone else in his position? As he went on I began to realise, when he began to talk about his faith, what it was that set him apart. When he professed his faith in God, which I saw, as sceptical as I can be, was sincere, reverent and unwavering, I knew that that was what gave him such a profound, unshakeable peace. Because his future was in God’s hands, he no longer had to worry and despair. Because he is a son of God, he had assurance of his value and his purpose.

He mentioned Jeremiah 29:11 as he said with solemn conviction that God loved him just the way he was, and I looked it up in a Bible after the interview. “’For I know the plans I have for you’, declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’” And I knew when Nick Vujicic looked round at us with his honest eyes that he was trying to impart to us the secret of his peace: that God loves us and that regardless of our shortcomings we should never give up.

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