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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Seeing 'Real Life' in a vacation


Hello people. So, my summer holiday is coming to an end all too soon. The family is out sightseeing, shopping, just trying to optimize the last few hours. Small crack in the paint though....I have soooo much work waiting for me back home and that is truly depressing. Hubby is so excited – you know men and work abi? He is trying his best to get me excited about getting back to the office. Talk about exhaling into the wind...sigh! All I can think of is waking up at odd hours of the morning, rushing to catch the bus, dealing with one office issue or the other, and...... traffic on the way back home. It is well.


As I reflect on the last 4weeks of my holiday, I think how I have come to learn new things about those around me. Can you imagine that I didn’t know that my first two sons were experts at Table Tennis? I mean, OMG! Seeing them play at the hotel I could only ask, how did this happen? We learnt it at our former school they said; it helped to deal with the boredom and stress. So, that’s at least one thing I can credit to that place, abi?  It was also fun rediscovering that ‘I’ve still got it’, even as I managed to trash my expert players on at least one occasion each. More wonderful was seeing the ease with which my last two children picked up the game, and yes, once we get home I’m buying a table. Good exercise oh peeps, esp chasing the errant tennis egg, lol.


I reflect on the weight I added, especially in view of my good intentions regarding my holiday eating. Hmmm! Those sure flew out of the window as my plane took off. I am dealing with some extra ‘love-handles’ and trusting God that I will be able to work them off in the month of September. All said, I have had a great holiday. It’s been wonderful waking up late and having no specific responsibility for the day other than to have fun in some other way. But.... real life calls and yours truly has no choice but to answer.
Real life... what does this mean anyway?


As I loosened my hair (yes, it is my hair, in so far as I bought and paid for it myself, no be so?) I noticed that my original (don’t u dare say anything o) hair has been near overtaken by gray strands. I look deeply at myself in the mirror and notice the wrinkling around my eyes is even more evident than before. Hmm! Me needs to get back to regular facials and facial moisturizers it seems. Funny though, I still feel like the same ‘me’ as I did twenty-five years back! I said to my husband and said that this was to me a confirmation that the bodies we occupy are no more that temporary houses as the Bible makes clear. The Soul and Spirit remain ever young, even while the flesh is for a season here on earth and does indeed begin to diminish from the day we are born.


Over the past two weeks of my holidays, God has reminded me every single night that tomorrow is not promised to me. I have found myself at the feet of the Lord every night, asking Him to forgive my shortcomings for the day, and waking up every morning being deliberately more thankful to Him for the git of a new day. I have had a clear daily ministration from the Spirit regarding the fact that none of us knows the hour when we will be called. I have been daily reminded of tales of people – old AND young, who went to bed in absolutely good health and then simply never woke up.  Truth be told, I have needed this reminder from God on every day of my holiday. When you are out having a good time, it’s so much easier to also take a bit of a vacation from God and truth be told, I had been guilty of this to some extent. I am grateful for the chastisement of the Spirit however, as I then found myself yielding up every outing, every roller-coaster rise, every train ride, every meal, every visit to the mall, every bus-ride, every event into His able hands, realising that I am no more special than any other person who has gone on vacation and ended up as a victim of some accident or disaster – whether man-made or natural.


This for me represents ‘real life’...the recognition that everything here on earth is just a phase and that the journey really begins at the end of it all. Real life is recognising that minus God’s divine protections and interventions, we are all at best subject to the evil machinations of the devil and his minions. Real life is recognising that if we yield to Jesus Christ as the clay yields to the potter, we will be daily moulded in all our dealings, bit by bit towards His perfect image, so that at any time He may choose to call us, we will be ready enough to make it into His Kingdom.

As we engage in the final packing of our too many suitcases, preparatory to our trip back to Naija, I am reminded of the scripture that while a man may make many plans, it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. I again give over to him, trusting that He will carry us safely to the other side. Just as I discovered over this period that my children had skills I didn’t know about, so also am I expectant that in the journey towards my real life, the Lord will show me areas of my gifting that I am yet unaware of, and He will allow my gifts to speak for me. Just as my other children readily learnt the ropes and are growing in the art of Table Tennis, so also am I confident that the Holy Spirit, who brings all things into our knowledge and understanding, will continue to teach me and guide me on my journey towards the Kingdom.


As I fold each article into my suitcase, it occurs to me that it is important that I stay malleable, for I really have no clear idea beyond today of how the Lord wants to move be, bend me, fold me, and put me aside for His use. I think about the fact that I am not allowed more than 23kg weight per suitcase, and it ministers to me that I need to be sure I don’t overlabour myself with the busyness of living, such that there is not enough room for the Lord to work His purpose through me. I think about how much easier my suitcases are to handle because they have wheels on them, and I realise I must remain flexible and ready to move in the direction that God wants to propel me.

As always, I choose to remain at peace for I know without a shadow of a doubt that the Lord is with me and in Him alone I live and move, and have my being. I trust that by His grace and under His leading, it will be a sure travel to the place where ‘real life’ truly awaits.

Much love peeps. 




Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Seeing God in my diet

So let’s not look at the fact that I started and stopped this blog several months ago. The point is .... I’m back! Besides this is how so many of us live our lives anyway isn’t it? We start one program (for us ladies usually a weight loss program),we go into it full blast and then suddenly lose steam and more likely than not – we forget it altogether. Aaah! I suspect I am speaking from the perspective of the 4 bars of chocolate I consumed earlier today despite my hour-long walk this morning. Sigh! But then again, tomorrow is and always will be ‘another day’ and another chance to try to get it right.

Kind of reminds me of God and the way He opens Himself to us for every ‘another day’ that He chooses to give us. Yes, sometimes our relationship with God is really like the proverbial diet. One day we are all over Him, full speed, fully committed and in love with Him. We are constantly in the Word, listening to and reading the Word. At various fellowships, watching Christian television, praying for hours on end.....and then one day just as suddenly we become lukewarm in our approach to Him. We get busy, we get discouraged, we get lazy, we feel unworthy, etc and so we just pull back. I mean how many times have I convinced myself that I am a very happy size 14 anyway so why bother with the dieting? Kinda like when we get to the stage of ‘I’m so far away from God anyway and I’ve fallen so short that He can’t approve of me, so why try to get close to Him anyway?’. Interesting!

Beyond our relationship with God on the spiritual plane, I think about how we manifest the God-in-us in the physical. Whether by way of our relationships with our fellow women or men, with our children, with our workers, etc I think about how often what we do does not align with the calling we have from Christ to love our neighbours as Christ loved us; to love and diligently pray for those who persecute us; to just treat people right simply because they are as well created in the image and likeness of God. Just like our bodies which we so often disregard as the temple of the Holy Ghost, and so pump it with inappropriate foods/sweets/snacks only to later turn and proclaim a new diet, our relationships with those in our atmosphere immediately places a test on whether we are actually walking our talks.
More and more, I find that God is dealing with me about how effectively I am putting His Word to practice in every area of my life – in how I treat myself, how I think about myself, and in how I think about and treat others whom He sends my way for one reason or the other. I realize that He will not be judging me on how much Scripture I know, how many times I went to church, how many fellowships I attended, but rather how many lives I truly impacted for the kingdom and whether I was faithful to my ‘diet’. God is going to be looking at how many times I started and stopped the projects he brought my way. How many times did He prompt me to act or speak   certain way to my husband, children, relatives, staff, etc and I didn’t carry through? How many times did He ask me to get some much needed rest and I chose to rather continue the plunge into one project or the other to the detriment of my health and wellbeing?

 These are the days that call for sober reflection and that I have been doing over the past couple of weeks. I am filled with a very deep desire to ensure that I am translating all the ‘Christianese’ that I speak into a practical everyday walk in every area of my life. Not an easy journey but, as long as God is willing to give me even just one more ‘another day’, I’m going to keep at it. Besides, by HIS strength I can do ALL things.

About Me

Entrepreneur, Mentor, Wife, Mother, Sister, Friend. A firm believer in God. Walking in faith everyday that by His grace, I will achieve harmony in all areas of my life, and make measurable impact in the lives of other women of the world

WORD FOR THE WEEK

LUKE 1:

34“-How can this be, Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” 35The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the Holy One to be born will be called the Son of God

JEREMIAH 2:

5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew [and] approved of you [as My chosen instrument], and before you were born I separated and set you apart, consecrating you; [and] I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.

6 Then said I, Ah, Lord God! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am only a youth. 7 But the Lord said to me, Say not, I am only a youth; for you shall go to all to whom I shall send you, and whatever I command you, you shall speak.

8 Be not afraid of them [their faces], for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord. 9 Then the Lord put forth His hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said to me, Behold, I have put My words in your mouth. 10 See, I have this day appointed you to the oversight of the nations and of the kingdoms to root out and pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.

1st CORINTHIANS 1:

25 [This is] because the foolish thing [that has its source in] God is wiser than men, and the weak thing [that springs] from God is stronger than men. 26 For [simply] consider your own call, brethren; not many [of you were considered to be] wise according to human estimates and standards, not many influential and powerful, not many of high and noble birth. 27 [No] for God selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is foolish to put the wise to shame, and what the world calls weak to put the strong to shame. 28 And God also selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is lowborn and insignificant and branded and treated with contempt, even the things that are nothing, that He might depose and bring to nothing the things that are,

Colossians 1:

28 Him we preach and proclaim, warning and admonishing everyone and instructing everyone in all wisdom (comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God), that we may present every person mature (full-grown, fully initiated, complete, and perfect) in Christ (the Anointed One).

29 For this I labor [[z]unto weariness], striving with all the superhuman energy which He so mightily enkindles and works within me.