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Friday Reflections

1.) There is the struggle to write. And then the struggle to actually post them. The later was my thing this week. I had stuff to post. I just did not get to it.

2.) How to be alone.

3.) Am I just in need of good ol' inspiration, or is this the most inspiring story ever? Gosh. God is good.

4.) My favorite fall thing is to get excited about all my shows being back on. But some of them have been so disappointing lately that I couldn't be any less bothered. Either that or *gasp* I just don't have the time.

5.) Adulthood is feeling excited about new sheets.


Friday Reflections

1.) The week her husband left her and her home was burgled, she got a grant to begin a project that would pioneer breast cancer research.

2.) Shonda Rhimes, first woman to create three hit shows with more than 100 episodes each.

3.) I don't know who Cardi B is, but I stumbled on these words of wisdom from her. She was spot on.

4.) Julian Assange, a man without a country. I don't think I have ever seen a more egoistical maniac, with a boatload of narcissism to boot. And his fans need to tell him to tuck in his misogyny. I mean the man did compare himself to Gandhi...to Mandela...sheesh

5.) Hilary Rodham Clinton, first woman to win a major party’s nomination for President.

6.) It's crazy how much we can achieve if we put our hearts to it.

7.) Apparently, the world is ending tomorrow. Ha.

8.) I think my dentist has ghosted me.

9.) I [literally] just started the show Grace and Frankie, and a character's name is NWABUDIKE! I mean, talk about representation hahaha. They call him Bud though. Bud...? Seriously?



ON THE POWER OF WORSHIP PLUS A PLAYLIST Pt.2

Here is part one. You gotta give me credit for promising to be back with a second part and actually coming back. Especially considering the week I have had. But heyyy no complaints here at all.



Did you enjoy those [from part 1]? Anyway, here goes a second part.

4.) Grace to grace, by Hillsong.
I love this song because it reminds me of a fundamental aspect of Christianity: the grace of God. It also reminds us that Christ died for us. That foundational truth is so easy to forget. We just live our lives, profess a love for God, but how often is it in our consciousness that Christ actually DIED for us. He paid our debt. We were asked recently how often we remember that Christ resurrected. We all said Easter. It's not that we don't know. Of course we do. But we take it for granted, for lack of a better word.

My debt is paid...
When I see that cross, I see FREEDOM
When I see that grave, I see Jesus
From death to life, I will sing your praise
In the wonder of your name/grace
How my soul will sing your praise
How wonderful are my Savior's scars....victorious

5.) Waymaker by Sinach
You know I gotta rep Naija. Like the title, it extols God for who He is: a way-maker. I first heard this song during the Olowogbogboro challenge. Yes, I'm a latecomer like that. First of all, y'all know that was one heck of an experience, so it's no surprise the song found and gave meaning to my life. Let's just say I really needed light in my life at the time. And God's presence indeed was all the light I could ever need. So yes it acknowledges the presence of God. This song reminds you God is still in the business of meeting needs and listening to every prayers. He truly is.

Way-maker, miracle-worker, promise-keeper
Light in the darkness
My God that is who You are
You are here touching every heart
I worship You
You are here healing every heart
You WIPE away all tears and mend BROKEN HEARTS.... Yaaassss

6.) Touch the Sky, by Hillsong
No shame in my game. I love Hillsong. Period. This is a mini testimony for me. And I think it's the first in these songs that sort of tells our own perspective more than declare who God is. In that it explains God as an anchor. When it's less about you, and more about God and others, that's when you begin to soar. If you are going to reach the top, you have to learn humility. I hear for a good marriage, you somewhat die to self? Well, in this relationship with God, it won't always be all about you. And that's sweet, because watch how you touch the sky when your knees hit the ground. He who wants to lead or become great, must first be a servant. Hey I didn't make the rules. Haha.

My heart beating
My soul breathing
I found my life when I laid it down
Spirit soaring
I touch the sky when my knees hit the ground
Everything I am...reaching out I surrender

Again, I will stop here for now. I think I will be back next week or make this some sort of regular update. I don't want to bombard you all at once. Of course, there is the off chance that you already know all of these songs haha. Still, I hope you reading this inspires you to truly dig deep to find what these songs mean to you. I'd love to hear that. Let me know what you think.

Love,

I

TLDR: seriously? C'mon now it was just a list. Oya go back up and read everything :p

On Complaining And My Challenge

Oh this is good. This affects everyone. Everywhere you go, people are complaining. About the economy; about their political leaders; about work; about traffic; about social media; about their future; about their families. Pretty much about everything under the darn sun. Now don't get me wrong, I complain too. Ha I'm chief complainer.



Sometimes we even complain about something that's absolutely okay. We complain even if things are great. It almost feels like the norm to just complain about something. I don't know how and when this culture of complaining permeated our lives his much, but it has. And it keeps eating at us. To be clear, there ARE MANY things wrong with the world and with us, and we are sometimes right to complain.

However, I am now almost convinced some of us just like the sound of our own voices while we complain. At the risk of sounding ignorant; I have to say when you hear the ridiculous thing some folks complain about, you really want to smack them. Myself included. I'm not even talking about silly first world problems now. I'm speaking more generally about someone, who maybe has a great job, a great family, even occasionally affords the yearly vacation, but is still hard pressed about how life in Nigeria/America/insert whatever country is so aggravating. Bla bla bla.

I have given enough disclaimer: I get it; life is hard sometimes. Other times though, we are just ungrateful brats.

I heard myself complain [again] sometime last week. I was whining to myself about the unrealistic amount of workload I had. Then I called myself to order. How about first STARTING the task before even complaining. Now remember my challenge here: and my success with it, if I say so myself?

I want to start another one: to stop complaining. I have decided that for every time I get the urge to complain, I would do two things instead. First, thank God for the other things that are wonderful in my life. For many of us, this should come easy because there are really many awesome stuff going on. The second thing to do rather than complain, is to do one thing towards alleviating what I want to complain about. So let's say I want to complain about not getting enough sleep, well then go to bed earlier, Ife. Even if it's just 30 minutes earlier. Or suppose I want to complain about how messy somewhere is, then start cleaning. Or suppose traffic is what bothers you, leave home early.

Of course the above is assuming everything you complain about has to do with you. Sometimes it's others. Then just remember you can't control how others behave. Find peace in that. You only really have control over how you react.

So this is my challenge as well as yours. Check yourself and try to reduce (maybe not completely stop) how much you complain. Yes our political leaders suck (this can literally apply to most countries of the world ha). Yes the economy is bad. Yes you need a better pay (don't we all?). Yes yes yes. But also yes, you are alive and well and doing ok. You will be fine. We all will.

TLDR: stop complaining. Be grateful and be more proactive.

Love,

I

P.s: I am not trivializing anyone's struggles at all. I have mine too and have just realized we can better manage our struggles. Fin.

Friday Reflections

1.) What is God's will for my life?

2.) Why do we find it so hard to enjoy the mundane, the normal, the boring? And yearn so desperately for excitement all the time?

3.) "My sister sells flat tummy tea on Instagram. I mean she's got hella followers, but what's her endgame?" Lmaoooo Insecure has the best, THE BEST dialogue on TV currently.

4.) This great story of how a rich man opened his home to victims of Irma.

5.) I've always talked about how Cristina Yang is my favorite fictional character ever. Period. The thing though is, I feel like if I knew someone like that in real life, I probably would not want to be her friend haha.

6.) I'm starting another Whole 30! Whoop....to share my experience or nah?

7.) I started reading a great book today, so I will probably have a book of the month. Yay. Haa it's been too long I posted one of these.

8.) Gosh kindness is such an important attribute. I mean, smarts is good. Gee, everyone is smart in some way (this is NOT true lol). Seriously now, human decency, courteousness, kindness are so rare nowadays.

9.) Why we fell for clean eating; an obsession with "clean eating".

10.) Read this post explaining why the author is transitioning away from veganism.

On The Power of Worship Plus a Playlist

For the longest time, I never really liked songs. I didn't get their appeal or perhaps, I just wasn't interested in them. So the way people describe having magical moments? Well, it never applied to me. This extended to worship songs as well: songs we sing to God in worship.



As far as I was concerned, when speaking of worship as a concept, my favorite way to remind myself of God's awe has always been through the Bible. I feel like some people love to sing, some others pray...I believe mine is reading the Bible and talking about God. So whenever I would see people crumble in tears during worship sessions, I used to be surprised. To me, praise and worship was mostly about having a good time—albeit  in God's presence.

Well all that is beginning to change. More recently I have been listening to songs that are exceedingly powerful. Songs that, by themselves speak to the greatness and power of God. Gosh, Hillsong Choir is pretty astounding. They are a group of highly talented individuals.  It goes beyond the singing (which in itself is great); it extends to the writing and overall production of the songs. The lyrics of their songs are filled with depth and meaning.

I now truly understand and believe those who emphasize the act of worship as an essential aspect of worshipping God. Anyway, in that vein I decided to share (I love to share, don't I?) a list some songs that have spoken to me recently, and of course I also say one or two things about them. I also think ever since joining the presentation team in Church—which  involves posting the lyrics of songs on the big screen among other things—I find myself appreciating the true meanings to those words I post. This is another way my life has been enriched since choosing to serve.  Anyway, here we go.


On How To Make a Decision

I came across a plan on YouVersion. I have to digress to talk a little about YouVersion because it's absolutely fantastic, and wherever you are in life, you can find something that speaks to you and helps you grow in your faith. Anyway, this plan was on decision-making and I knew I had to share some of what I learnt. Because people are very concerned, borderline obsessed with making decisions. They want to know if they are making the right decisions, and if so, is there a better alternative? How can I pick the one that best serves me? What if I pick door/option A and in the future it doesn't work out. How can I pick between two jobs, or two schools, or ahem two men? I do not have all the answers for you. I do however have some suggestions based on a recently completed plan on YouVersion, whose name currently eludes me now. Good thing is the actual points are not forgotten...at least not yet.


1.) Consider The Consequences
Of course, pray about it first. This goes without saying, and especially for Christians. So now that you have prayed, when making a decision, first start by considering the potential consequences of your actions. Every action has consequences, good or bad. Remember that. An interesting analogy for that is Deuteronomy 28:1-6. It contains a lot of blessings. My favorite  being:

"Wherever you go and whatever you do, you will be blessed" - Deuteronomy 28:6

And us Christians, ha. We love those one liners, or verses that we can just mumble all day like incantations, with the hope that a constant recitation would somehow automatically get rid of all our problems. To be clear, quoting bible verses is awesome. Constant meditation is even more awesome. The thing though is we need to consider contexts a LOT. In Deuteronomy, for instance, God gave those blessings conditional upon certain commandments to his people. Now, if you go down a bit to verse 19, you will see serious curses that are the exact opposites of the blessings above. Consequences people. For every action, there is a reaction or what's that thing physicists say? Just figure out what the consequences are for each potential decision.

2.) What Would Jesus Do?
A saying almost as old as time itself, but rarely ever actually acted upon. This goes without saying. And how would you know what Jesus would do? Check out his word.

Huh, do you want me to read the whole Bible Ife just cos I want to make a decision?

Okay, fine. What kind of a person do you envision yourself to be? What kind of a person do you want to be? God demands justice, kindness, and humility. So how does the choice you make embody these values? Which choice makes you more kind, humble, and just? How does the choice affect your character?

"Imitate God, therefore in everything you do, because you are his dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God." Ephesians 5:1-2

"No, o people, the Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he  requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God." -Micah 6:8

3.) Do Unto Others As You Want Done Unto You
This is as basic as it says. And it was Christ's golden rule (Matthew 7:12). Making right decisions is really a habit that grows on you. But taking the above three points into consideration is something to look into. Just ask God for wisdom if you need and He will give unto you.

Finally, and just as important is trust. Seriously. Trust God. Trust yourself; that you made a decision and just have the faith that you made the right one. Let it go. Don't make a decision and then linger on for ever, wondering. It's how some people are already married, but a gazillion years later they are still wondering if their lives would have been better if they chose to marry the other loser asking them out. RULE number one after having made a decision is YOU NEVER KNOW THE ROAD NOT TAKEN.

what if I had....

But if I chose this instead....

NO. So many variables work together for an event and to recreate a choice would mean taking into account every variable and counterfactual. I shouldn't get too technical. The point is you have made a decision, STICK by it. Commit to it and see it through. And don't let the fear of making mistakes with your decision paralyze you into inaction. Indecision is itself a decision.

TLDR: consider consequences; act like Jesus would; do unto others what you would have done unto you; don't let fear keep you from deciding; and once you decide, commit to it.

Love,

I

P.S: the actual writing of blog posts isn't what frustrates me. It's every other thing: production, if you will. Things like adding pictures, formatting, sharing on social media bla bla ugh. I just wanna write abeg. Anyway, have a good week. I had such a productive weekend of fun and work that I'm beaming with pride. Weekends like this convince me adulting ain't so bad after all. Haha. Go on and rock this week, beloved.