Inspiration

Life, The Bigger Learning Ground.

Being a Nigerian, the need to study within the educational system has never been up for discussion. It is an unspoken religion in my family. In fact, the damaging repercussion that would engulf one’s entire existence if ever they were to suggest to their Nigerian parents – ‘I do NOT want to go to University’ has turned into the never ending ‘joke’ which circulates within many young Nigerians friendships groups. (Unfortunately, this is something that happens not only in some Nigerian homes but across many other countries and homes and I also know the parents mean well).

Oddly enough, the perception of education is one that I never understood. I hated education with every fibre of my being because I never understood it. That happens a lot, doesn’t it? A lack of understanding for someone or something can often spur on your hatred for a person or thing. Education for me was no different. I didn’t understand why such importance was placed on this complicated system that seems to make the world go around. A system worshipped by many. Now I am not here to bash education, far from it. The whole educational system is one I will forever be grateful for, because it provided me a space for growth even without realising it. There I even compare it to sharing similarities with experiencing the thrills of childhood. Childhood like education is a man’s training wheels at life. An experience for growth from mistakes, some individuals robbed of their childhood, some experience their childhood in its full entirety and others, who lack in understanding, experience an average childhood.

From the dependent maintenance grants and loans, the 9am lectures, the group works and grounds filled with everything diversity; educational institution like Universities serve as the biggest bubble wrap of them all. Grounds that can breed into you; levels of comfortability, conflict and conformity without it being its intentions. I have seen many young people like myself fall into the system of education and used it not as it is intended to be used but rather lost in the system of its establishment. Lacking the understanding of what these establishments can stand for in regards to life in general, I struggled every step of the way to complete every key stage. Floating at an average level from GCSE to A-levels to achieving my first degree and now unto the second (all to the glory of God), my perception of education had always been very limited. I failed to see these key stages as my very training grounds for mistakes, growth, an opportunity to work on my craft and overall build myself. Education doesn’t stop at the grading systems; well it shouldn’t.

For many, the first several decades of their lives are spent in various educational institutions. They unfortunately fall under the pressure of a grading criteria in every class. They are consumed by the unconscious limitations of education that upon completion, they struggle with the life that awaited them outside of education. There is no benchmark in life like those grading criteria in education systems therefore dare to develop a more holistic view of what education can do to you. See education as that internship you use to gain recognised experience and transferable skills geared towards that ultimate career of your choice.

Education is a system; life is the school! In a system, there is ample amount of room for errors. There are loopholes but life is a subjective continuum that can be attested through experiences, culture, religion, etc. It has no grading criteria; therefore, dare to live from a more holistic perspective called life rather than the narrow view what education holds (a degree or a qualification). See education as a training wheel for life, a childhood to be experienced in all its entirety, a space for growth from many mistakes and the miniature of life, the bigger learning ground.

There Is Always a Conversation!

I find it hard to escape my thoughts. There always seem to be some form of conversation going on and it irritates me. Sometimes I catch myself catching myself in my stream of thinking and it frustrates me. I spend so much time in my head that nothing ever just happens to me. I have always noticed this frustrating mind cycle and it has always bothered me but I can never just seem to stop. some days I spend time praying for things to just happen to me without my awareness or permission. Like talking to a taxi driver for over half an hour about everything life, knowledge and Africans for over half an hour while he waits for me to catch my coach. It sounds mundane but that kind of thing doesn’t just happen to me. Something completely unplanned. Something I have not coined up in my many conversations. So, for something like that to happen, forever leaves an impression on me because I don’t have to pressure myself to speak about God but somehow, He casually just flows through the conversation. All that to say, I struggle a lot with the pressure of creating every moment rather than just allowing them to just happen and just enjoy and be present in the moment.

This is something that affects many areas of my life and it is just frustrating to say the least. I find that it affects my relationship with God also and I honestly do not know how to work with these conversations forever going on within. I was watching this comedian who said something so profound. He said ‘sometimes your setback is actually preparation for your comeback’ ‘so the things that looked like it was working against you are actually the things God is using to prepare you for what he will have you do’ but sometimes I feel like it’s easier to identify those things in other than in myself. I am forever trying to look within to identify what part of this statement speaks life into my many setbacks and I cannot say I have the best perspective to see it and maybe that is my issue. I am always trying to understand everything before I do and think things through all the time and come up with these possible scenarios that I see working in my favour that I ruin every possibility of just living in the moment and just enjoying it. So maybe I don’t need to comprehend what God is doing in terms of understanding the bigger picture just yet, maybe I just need to say ‘hey, what the hell! I’ll just go along and see what happens’.

Another thing is, I don’t like to leave anything without any form of resolution in sight. I learnt from a mentor of mine that sometimes, instead of being in a rush to fix something, maybe just stay in that moment, that feeling and acknowledge whatever that moment or feeling is even if it’s in a state of the uncomfortable’. Because people are always so quick to fix things, fix people and no one ever just stays in that place long enough to see what happens next. Honestly, with the pressure of having a platform like this based on God, I had to be reminded what this platform stood for, Yes, I love speaking from Scriptures but at the same time, this is also a platform to share parts and pieces of my journey and I don’t know why I have grown so scared to share this part of my journey on here which meant somehow turning this into a one dimension platform.

Yes, I love God and love to learn and impart others as I learn but in addition to that, I started this platform to support the intricate part of my journey and I guess this is me shutting down the conversation within about trying to BE for myself all God has called me to be out of my own way and understanding but starting over by saying ‘hey, what the hell! I’ll just go along and see what happens’.

Guess what. The conversations stopped.

Longing for a Beautiful Place of Worship.

Wheeyy-heeeyy!!!!

My very first cheeky weekly fav of 2017. I have been longing to get back into that beautiful place of worship with God. I stumbled on the beautiful sound of Elevation Worship.

Elevation Worship is formed of worshippers from Elevation Church based in Charlotte, North Carolina. Pastored by Stephen Furtick. I would describe pastor Stephen himself as a meticulous pastor with a good sense of humour. His ongoing preaching series titled ‘Work Your Window‘ based on 1 Kings 19 has been thoroughly insightful and if you love your preaching with stories attached to it; check him out at ‘Elevation Church‘ via Youtube. Now unto the music.

The group has several albums out already but their ‘Here as in Heaven’ album is LEGIT! But here are my top 7 favourites:

Peace and Love

 

I’m Sorry but Don’t Be an Eve.

“Be the kind of woman who, when your feet hit the floor each morning, the devil says “Oh, no! She’s up.” – Joanne Clancy

This morning, I am that kind of woman. Feeling like I have just won the battle and a great war and it feels truly amazing. I came across this quote last year and immediately fell in love with the empowering sense of motivation it gives. Imagine waking up each morning and working through the day like you know you’ve got the spirit of power, love and of a sound mind. Today, I walk in this knowledge and boy, do I feel empowered.

Many times in the past, I have felt powerless in my abilities but grew in the knowledge of the God I serve. I have allowed the devil to have a field day in my mind, weighing me down with more confusion and a lack of peace of mind. Waking up today was no different. I woke up feeling lacklustre about the day ahead and thoughts of conspiracies flew into my mind and decided to plant its unwanted self in my head. Great, just what I need; more confusion. I couldn’t shake it off on my own. So feeling powerless in my abilities, I proceeded to praying and asking God for forgiveness because I recognised that these conspiracies were hurtful to him, doubted his abilities and there I say, his presence. I don’t even remember how I got to channelling all that prayer into rebuking the devil; but in that moment, I’d realised that my greatest weapon which is the word of God had to be used. And who is the word of God? Jesus! Using the name of Jesus to fight my battle this morning; left me winning the battle of this minefield. Battle won. Breath.

Isn’t it interesting how canny the devil can be? He is so slick in his ways that if you’re not careful; you end up falling into his trap. But I’ve learnt in his slippery manner, he’s also equally stupid. But scripture reminds me that ‘I have Power, I have Love and such as heck, I have a sound mind’. So when you feel like your mind is called into question, rely on the rock in whom your identity is found, the power of Christ that lives in you, know that you are loved by God and he wants for your good and not evil and know in Christ, you have the promise of a sound mind. So therefore, fight.

Remember Eve? Don’t be like Eve, who lost in her battle against the devil’s temptations. Don’t forget God’s love for you, remember the power of Christ that lives in you and don’t consider yourself powerless but call the name of Jesus EVERY TIME. The grace to do so never runs out nor does the power in His name. Don’t draw your weapon on the shelf only for the great wars but use it even in the small one. You must be alert, awake and intentional if you’re going to win this war and be victorious.

The devil will only test and attack you if he knows that you know who your foundation is in and if you are someone who inhabits in the Power that threaten his plans for devour.

Today, I am the kind of woman who, even before my feet touched the floor, this morning, the devil said “Oh no! She’s up.”.

Scripture Reference:

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.’ – 2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV)

‘And all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.’ – 1 Corinthians 10:4 (NKJV)

‘Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.’ – Ephesians 6:17 (NLT)

‘Then the woman saw that the tree was good for food and delightful to look at, and that it was desirable for obtaining wisdom. So she took some of its fruits and ate it; she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.’ – Genesis 3:6 (HCSB)

‘Then, the Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, you are cursed, more than all animals, domestic and wild. You will crawl on your belly, grovelling in the dust as long as you live.’ – Genesis 3:14 (NLT)

‘Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.’ – 1 Peter 5:8 (NLT)

15. Waiting

I find myself always waiting.

Not upon the second arrival of my Saviour kind of wait. But,

The kind that causes you to wait for the other shoe to drop.

The ‘I know my idle hands ought to find something worth doing but I’ll wait anyways’ kind of wait.

I repeatedly mistake being STILL for waiting.

In the unfolding of this story, I wait

Knowing there’s a master and a field,

desperate for more labourers.

Still I wait for Him to ask me to work for him.

14. Abba Father.

We will rise as the bearer tears the shadows from the surface of the Earth.

We will mount the air on which our souls will lay,

and cry the testimonial cries of the One we were made to become.

Exclaiming in reverence ‘Abba Father’.

How to be a FALSE teacher 101.

I haven’t done a weekly favourite in what feels like forever, so in my attempt to celebrate my four year blogging anniversary; I thought ‘why not a cheeky weekly favourite!’. Better still, ‘why not a cheeky weekly poetry favourite!’.

I stumbled upon this poetry piece by Kevin Perry called ‘How to be a False Teacher 101’. It’s about Kevin’s admonishment to careless and manipulative ministers and shepherds of God’s people in a comical, yet convicting way. It has been on a constant replay in my head. Being a Christian myself meant I was unfortunately able to identify with some of the thing he spoke about in terms of my personal experiences and from other people’s ‘testimonies’.

I am in no way, shape or form promoting ‘false teacher-hood or bashing anyone’.

My personal walk with God, the different seasons and my purpose is teaching and shaping me to live a life opposite to that of a false life.

This is NOT the benchmark on which I gauge my honesty, faithfulness or obedience by (I’m rambling now) but honestly, it is an inspiring and convicting piece and I do hope you are not only blessed but encouraged by it.