JULY|| Trusting God

Welcome to July, Friends.

Can you even believe we are halfway done with 2018 already? And what a year it’s been.
Of a truth, God is faithful in keeping his promises.

As we anticipate the unfolding of the latter half of this year, may we be strengthened to accomplish our goals, overcome every limitation and meaningfully contribute to our societies and generation at large.

A recurring truth for me this season, has been…


Looking back to the first half of this year alone, if not for God’s mercies, I would have been consumed. 

And if I didn’t trust in his promises, I would have made some foolish decisions- out of fear, lust, impatience, or anger. 

In my walk with him, I’m learning that…

If God can be TRUSTED, then God must be OBEYED.

I love this verse from the popular hymn – Trust and Obey;

“But we never can prove 

The delights of His love,

Until all on the altar we lay; 

For the favor He shows, 

And the joy He bestows,

Are for them who will trust and obey.”



So what are you trusting God for this Season?

  • A Job?

Are you just interested in a well-paying job or you’re MORE concerned about God ordering your steps to the right place, even if the pay is not so great?

  • Your Marriage?

Are you extending grace, forgiveness and patience to your spouse?
Are you keeping a healthy boundary with members of the opposite sex? Do you seek godly counsel when you’re faced with challenges?

  • Financial provision?

Are you applying wisdom in spending? Do you practice delayed gratification? Do you have a savings/investment plan? How much of a cheerful giver are you?

I don’t know what your unique situation is, but I know that if we trust God fully, obedience will be easy.

There can be no sincere OBEDIENCE without genuine TRUST and LOVE is the foundation of TRUST. 


To take it a step further,

The quality of our trust often determines the promptness of our obedience.


I was in a bible-study recently, and the teacher made a statement that shook me.

Delayed Obedience is NOT Obedience.

And therein lies the challenge. For some of us, we don’t necessarily have a problem with obeying God, we just want to take our time to do what he asks of us.

But God wants us to obey him as a matter of URGENCY, because the King’s business demands haste.

The truth is, God knows what we don’t know. He alone knows how to strategically bring our past, present and future together in his perfect timing. Hence we must NEVER hesitate to obey.

So if God gives me a business idea, I need to let go of my fears and proceed with it ASAP, because someone somewhere, my community and an entire generation might just be awaiting the uniqueness of the service I have to offer.

Let me also add that,

Partial Obedience is NOT Obedience.

So if God says I should forgive someone, I must forgive the person completely. Kingdom matters must be taken as a matter of precision. 

Whenever we fail to fully obey God, it shows we still don’t trust him enough to completely do what he says.

As much as our obedience is ultimately NOT about us, but about God, we must also realize that obeying God is ALWAYS in our best interest.

Obedience is the only way to fully enjoy God’s blessings. It may be difficult at first, but it’s always worth it in the end.


It feels like a sermon, right? I hope you were blessed, because I was!

***

Highlights for this month:

  • ❤️Worship
  • ❤️Word


Zechariah 4:6-7 GNB


“The angel told me to give Zerubbabel this message from the LORD: “You will succeed, not by military might or by your own strength, but by my spirit. Obstacles as great as mountains will disappear before you. You will rebuild the Temple, and as you put the last stone in place, the people will shout, ‘Beautiful, beautiful!’ ””

This “word” is making me literally jump in my spirit💃💃💃

  • ❤️Reading

1. I’ll have what she’s having (Bobbie Houston)

2. Money won’t make you rich (Sunday Adelaja)

3. Friends, Partners and Lovers (Kevin A Thompson)

4. Fire brand (Debola-Deji Kurumi)

  • ❤️Currently Loving Me

In recent times, I’ve had time to reflect on the course of my life.

I’m thankful for my journey, because it has been no ordinary one.

As I look back to about a decade back, I can see the intricate workings of an all sovereign God behind the scenes…

Throwback of destiny!!!!😂😂😂

Thankful for the near-misses and the mistakes, for every time I fell and got up again.

Thankful for every risk I have taken, and for every accomplishment I’ve had.

Thankful for every delay, frustration and disappointment, they ultimately drew me closer to God.

Thankful for every answered prayer, breakthrough and miraculous intervention.

Thankful for every divinely orchestrated relationship, for friends of life and destiny.

Thankful for every day growth even in the midst of challenges.

Thankful because my path has been like a shining light that shines brighter and brighter unto the perfect day 🙌

I certainly don’t look like all I’ve been through…Hehe

Cuteness overload 😍

Indeed, the God of my journey NEVER disappoints, NEVER!!!

****

I just want to encourage you, make it a priority this July to… 

Photo credit: WEB

Cheers!
:::requ1ne:::
❤️❤️❤️

Advertisements

BOOK REVIEW|| LESSONS FROM FERVENT

Author: Priscilla Shirer

Genre: Christian, Non-Fiction

How I came about the book
Similar to the book UNSTOPPABLE, it was from a library of books shared by an amazing sister in our TFSA group.

Expectations
If you’ve watched The Movie, WAR ROOM then you are already familiar with the amazing Priscilla Shirer who acted the main character in the movie.

For some reasons, I’m yet to watch the movie but was pretty excited about reading the book.

And can I just say this? I LOVE(D) THE BOOK.

Every page I turned was loaded.

I’ve read it twice already and look forward to a third read.



Observations
The book was an easy read.
The writing format was personal.
It was as though the author was speaking to me directly.

The crux of the book was PRAYER.
It is not a book that cajoles you to pray.
It is a book that compels you to pray.

“We simply don’t have the luxury of playing nice with prayer, not if we want things to change.”

You don’t even have a choice.

For every page you turn…

You Read.

You Meditate.

You Pray.

Then Repeat.

The enemy starts failing when we start praying!

Lessons
The lessons in this book are just too numerous and it’ll be a great disservice for you to think you can make do with the few snippets I’ll share here:

1- Prayer is the portal that brings the power of heaven down to earth. Fervent prayer is fueled by passion and fed by faith!

2- The battles the enemy wages has a personality to them, an intimate knowledge of who you are and the precise pressure points where you can most easily be taken down.

3- Satan is not God. And he is not God’s counterpart or peer. They’re not even on the same playing field. His influence, authority, and power don’t even touch the fringe of what our Lord is capable of doing. Satan and God are not mates, period.

4- Prayer: It’s how we keep our whole selves engaged and alert, trusting God for the right things, confident He’s giving them, able to sense His direction about what to do and then to take action accordingly.

5- Expect prayer to expose where you’re still resisting God—not only resisting His commands but resisting the manifold blessings and benefits He gives to those who follow him.

6- Instead of convicting you for the purpose of restoration, as God’s Spirit does, Satan condemns you for the purpose of destroying and humiliating you. There’s nothing bad in your life the devil won’t try to make worse!

7- Focus protects your goals and dreams from being consumed in small bites, stolen right out from under your nose in twenty-minute segments of compromise.

8- There is something you can’t see working underneath the surface, controlling and manipulating what you can see. Praying with precision is key. When we pray about the places where we seriously suspect the enemy is at work—that’s how we keep our prayers focused, not only on particular situations but on biblical truths that are consistent with maintaining victory in the midst of them.

9- One of the enemy’s strategies is to make you mourn who you wish you were rather than celebrate who you really are. His primary tools are Insecurity and Self doubt.

10- Prayer is a reminder to yourself, as well as a declaration to the enemy, that you know he’s there. That you’re on to him.

11- Prayer makes us aware of all the resources and strength and protection that God has already placed on our side.

12- Stop at the place where you first recognize the scent of temptation in the air. And before you touch it, remember where it’s been, where it came from and who’s behind it- SATAN!

13- God’s purpose in giving you Sabbath spaces amid your full, productive life is to help you be uninhibited in your devotion, service, and worship of Yahweh.

14- Prayer—fervent, strategic prayer—can change things. Even unchangeable things. Even things as unchangeable as real-life scenes from your past—what you did, what you didn’t do, why you did it, why you didn’t.

15- Expect your fervency to lead you to a place of rest. Because God is the One who’s fighting for you. And He will surely prevail.


Let me just stop here….you all need to get this book!

Challenges

It’s easy to forget the great lessons in the book if you don’t put them to practice immediately. To maximize this book, you can share it with a friend, prayer partner or members of your small Christian group so you each other accountable.

Who should read the book?

Everyone.

Especially, you reading this review.

Yes, YOU.

Trust me when I say your life CANNOT remain the same afterwards.


I’m a living witness.

PS: A lazy christian will not benefit from the book.

Conclusion

FERVENT literally forces your spiritual eyes to open.

You begin to notice things.

Familial Patterns, Self destructive Habits or Carnal Feelings that you might have hitherto taken for granted.

Recommendation

This book is pure Gold and I recommend it for:

Every Sister who wants to make a difference,

Every Daughter who wants to know the truth,

Every Wife who wants to live in peace,

Every Mother who wants to walk in victory,

And,

Every believer with a burden to intercede, both male and female.

And if you are thinking of going on a few days personal retreat, FERVENT is definitely a choice book to take along.

It will also help to make (or buy) Scripture flash cards and keep a Prayer journal while reading this book. You’ll be glad you did.

***
I hope you enjoyed this review.

Have you read FERVENT? 

If yes, please share your thoughts. 

Cheers,

:::requ1ne:::
❤️❤️❤️

FEBRUARY|| P R I O R I T I E S

Hey Friends,

Welcome to F E B R U A R Y.

I know it’s been a couple of days already but…It’s better late than never. 

God is good!
I’m excited because this month is another opportunity for me to start AFRESH with God.
Because our God is a God of new beginnings.

“In the BEGINNING, God created….”

In him, all things are made NEW. Including broken dreams, failed relationships, missed opportunities, deteriorating health and more. 

And yes, I’ve seen all of the above happen in my own LIFE. 
Again thank God for F E B R U A R Y. 

Like a friend mentioned in her blogpost, January was a TRIAL month for a lot of us.

And in another friend’s words, 

“February is the new January.”

My prayer is that everyone reading this will have the faith and courage to start AFRESH with God this month. No matter how impressive or challenging the last month was. 

Because moving forward, we have NO EXCUSE but to do what God would have us do.

***

One of the lessons God has reminded me of, in recent times is to learn to define my priorities.

My priorities determine my choices.
And each day that comes, I’m faced with lots of choices. 

Some are quite simple.

Like deciding what to wear to work in the morning, what to eat during the day or what time to go to bed at night.

Others are more complex.

For instance, I recently got another job offer (in the town where my family lives) and it was a tough decision to remain in my current workplace rather than move back home.

Some advantages I considered were:

– The new job offer is in a facility at least 4 times bigger than where I currently work, with hopefully better exposure and even post Housejob opportunities.
– I will have more proximity to my family and loved ones.
– I get to fellowship/serve in my home church, something I would really, really love to do.
– I get to spend less and save more, since I’ll be getting most of my upkeep as regards foodstuff and groceries from home.

A few well-meaning friends counseled me to accept the offer but I had to decline eventually, because I believe I’m here in this particular location for a reason, and I trust God enough to reveal that to me in due time.

Another important lesson I’ve learnt over time is that: 

Every choice has a CONSEQUENCE.

Here’s one Google definition of the word consequence:

– importance or relevance.


synonyms: importance, import, significance, account, moment, momentousness, substance, note, mark, prominence, value, weightiness, weight, concern, interest, gravity, seriousness.


In the long run,

My choices determine my destiny.



That’s definitely something to pause and think about.

If I don’t have the right priorities, I won’t make the right choices.

If I don’t make the right choices, I will face the consequences of my wrong choices.

Simple, right?

Here are some benefits of having clearly stated priorities:
1. To differentiate what is URGENT from what is IMPORTANT.
2. To conserve my physical, emotional, spiritual and mental energy.
3. To effectively manage my time.
4. To be proactive (rather than reactive) about life.
5. To focus on what I’ve been called to do rather than what others are doing.

In recent times God has also reminded me that to consistently make healthy choices, I need a Margin.

A MARGIN is defined as the difference between my LOAD and my LIMITS.

Truth is, we live in a BUSY world. There are lots of things calling for our attention from every direction. 

If we don’t put a margin to what we do on a daily basis, we would quickly exhaust the ENERGY (Physical, Mental, Spiritual and Emotional) that God has bestowed to us.

I CAN DO ALL THINGS, BUT I’M NOT CALLED TO DO EVERYTHING. 

Here are some of the things I believe God would have me do this year

1. Fruitful dieting: I’m not a big FAN of fruits. In the last couple of years, I’ve tried adding fruits to my meal plan but I’ve not been consistent. I’m highly selective (with apples, bananas and coconuts) and some days I’m not just in the mood to buy or eat any fruit. 

I’m hopeful that this year, my story will change for the better. 

2. Book Reviews: I’ve never reviewed a book before despite being an avid reader. I know it’s supposed to be simple but I keep asking myself if I can even try. No more excuses, this year (and hopefully before month end) I’m going for it. 

3. Ambidextrous challenge: Okay so this is a little funny. I know a couple of my colleagues who are left handed writers. Let’s just say I think it’s cool. Since I’m naturally right handed I decided to practice writing with my left hand too. So far, so good, I think I’m doing pretty well. 

***

FEBRUARY Highlights:

💡WORD- Ps 1:2

💡WORSHIP

💡Currently Reading:

The book of PSALMS


– School of the Spirit (Roberts Liardon)


– The Purpose driven life (Rick Warren)


– Before You Say “I do” (Anonymous Monk)


– What I would do differently (Sam Adeyemi)


– Marriage Makeover (John & Lisa Bevere)

💡ADVENTURE:

 I’m thankful that my new posting is a bit more flexible. So I got to watch a really nice movie over the weekend. 

Maya the bee


***

That’s all for now! 

Cheers to a great FEBRUARY.
:::requ1ne:::
❤️❤️❤️

OCTOBER|| C O U R A G E


It’s a few days into October already and all I can say is, God is good!

While meditating on what theme this month would be about, one word that stood out in my heart, was COURAGE. And I believe God was giving me a gentle reminder, that when everything else fails (my plans and what-not), I can look up to him and remain courageous.

Here are a few synonyms for the word COURAGE:
“bravery, pluckiness, valor, fearlessness, intrepidity, nerve, daring, audacity, boldness, grit, hardihood, heroism, gallantry”

And I’ll go with the first, BRAVERY

the admirable quality of being able to confront frightening things. It takes bravery for a knight to battle a dragon, but it also takes bravery for a shy child to walk into a new classroom.
(Vocabulary.com)

It’s little wonder that the song in my heart for this season just happens to be:

||WORSHIPYou make me brave (Amanda Cook)

And it’s one of my favorite songs ever! I remember having it on repeat for sometime last year.

||WORD– Lamentations 3:22-24 GNB

“The LORD ‘s unfailing love and mercy still continue, Fresh as the morning, as sure as the sunrise. The LORD is all I have, and so I put my hope in him.” 

I especially love the line that reads,

Fresh as the morning, as sure as the sunrise
. How reassuring that is! 

I still don’t know all God has in stock for me this season but I’m stepping out of the shadows of fear, discouragement and doubts and embracing his promises by faith.

And Amen to that!
***
In a nutshell, here’s what I’ve been upto:

|| My Ankara crafts and designs exhibition (As Promised)



My trainer, Niyot of Beracah House of Fashion, who is also a longtime friend did such a great job and I’m thankful for the opportunity to learn through her. Moving forward, I think I’ll be focusing on the Ankara book covers and see what designs I can come up with.

|| Still Learning

Spanish and Igbo!

|| Recent Reads:

Anthills of the Savannah (Chinua Achebe)
This was my first time reading any Chinua Achebe’s book. I’d attempted “There was a Country” earlier this year but found it difficult to continue with it. Not too long ago, I picked up this title, but I wasn’t enjoying the plot, so I dropped it. Eventually, one bored evening I summoned up courage and jumpstarted it (i.e. started reading right from the middle) and I was so intrigued that I read until the end. I found the book compelling, thought-provoking and with a melodramatic ending.

I heard that song before (Mary Higgins Clark)
I totally loved this book (although I’m sure I’ve read it before but totally forgot the plot), the writer kept me guessing until the very end. It had the right amount of suspense that kept me glued till the last page. If you’re a fan of mystery/crime/suspense books, I totally recommend that you read this one.

And then there were none (Agatha Christie)
I first read this book a couple of years ago, I had an idea about the plot but forgot how it ended, so I decided to read it again. So it was the Judge after all, what a twist!

|| Currently Reading:

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (Stephen R. Covey)

Principles and Values become more evident when we think of how short life is.

||Re-reading (For my Small Group Bible-study):

UNSTOPPABLE (Christine Caine)

Some start for the gold but end up with the bronze. Some start for the gold but do a poor exchange and can not continue. Some start for the gold but drop the baton and are disqualified. Some start for the gold and not only win the race, but break a record doing so.

|| Recent Adventure: A Mini-vacay!

So yours sincerely took a few days off to spend in Lagos. Yaaaas!!!
You know how I feel about the city already (You can read about my previous experiences here and here). This time around though, I was not constrained by a lack of “cash” or “time” nor any urgent business to take care of. I wanted to not just pass through Lagos, but actually savor it all over like a first-timer.

The summary of my stay was: Sightseeing, Window-shopping (plus some micro-shopping…lol), People-watching, Reading novels, Eating and Sleeping. I eventually stayed more indoors than outdoors, and found it kinda boring, thanks to EKEDC…😑🙄

I went off to visit one of my friends (@Tyn) and enjoyed every moment of it. Also went on a date with my sister to watch the movie, FLATLINERS (a Sci-Fi/Medical Thriller/Horror combo). The plot wasn’t too bad, in my opinion. Definitely PG material.

Then I ran into one of my seniors from Unilorin, Eyitayo, at the Palms Mall (saw him last in 2010…haha), I started “gisting” my sis how he is such a prominent figure on FB, and a kind-of-social activist etc. He is someone I actually respect (from a distance) and it was an honor to see him again, howbeit for a few minutes.

Finally, I got to ride in an Uber, then a BRT bus for the first time ever and I enjoyed both (for different reasons). Lagos is such a lovely place tbh, I just don’t see myself living there. But who knows, ehn?😉


Enjoy the lovely views!


To wrap up the post, here are my

|| 9 Intriguing Lessons [plus 1 Life Changing Discovery] from 2017:

1. Social media is overrated. I know it sounds cliché, but I’m only beginning to understand that phrase. I’ve now realized that Facebook (which was the social media platform I used the most) is not that important. I used to think it was impossible for me to do without Facebook in a day until I actually put some structure to my social media time and now I have days when I completely forget to log in. It’s amazing isn’t it? Ever wondered what we all did before the advent of social media?

2. Not everything that is happening will continue to happen. “Time” and “Chance” happens to all men. If you’re a Nigerian living in Nigeria, have you ever wondered what happened to the likes of Mr. Biggs and Tantalizers? My sentiments exactly.

3. Time alone doesn’t make things better, deliberate actions do. Thanks to the Mother Hen (Remi Owadokun) for this. If something is bad and you do nothing about it, it will only get worse.

4. Forgiveness is not forgetfulness, but choosing not to remember. Choosing not to remember an offense is quite different from forgetting it, as if it never happened. I so needed that closure. Phew!

5. What you do is more important than what you know. We have many “knowers” but far too few “doers.” Memo to me. Noted!

6. To every stage in life, there is a backstage and to every scene there’s a behind-the-scene. Truth!

7. Others are different from you, and so are you from others. Our unity lies in our individual uniqueness and not in our uniformity (or conformity).

8. (More than your phones, wallets, money, relationships etc) The enemy targets your joy, don’t let him steal it!

9. The Nigerian Police may (or may not) be your friend. Not all policemen are unkind, rude or wicked. Ditto Lawyers, Nurses, Doctors etc Having a preconceived mindset can be harmful.

10. I don’t like bread. In fact, I’ve never liked it, and I’m only just realizing that. So I’ve only been tolerating bread all my life?! Well, it’s better late than never.

|| Inspiration from around the web:

1. On Adulting, Rounding Up My Housemanship Year and Future Plans

2. Why I Shut Down My Instagram Account (Cutting back to move forward)
3. What it means to be a Christian doctor

4. Preparation: A lesson from Hurricane Irma

5. Nothing to prove

Ps: Still on the job search, if you’ve been praying, please pray harder! 🙏🏾
___

*EKEDC: Eko Electricity Distribution Company

:::Requ1ne:::
❤️❤️❤️

JUDICIOUS JANUARY!!!

Hola!

Como estas?

Para mi,

Estoy bien, gracias.


It’s a NEW YEAR already!!

But really, where did 2016 run to? 😁

I’m so grateful for the new year, because it is a fresh beginning and there’s so much to hope for.

I’m talking about my Goals for 2017; and here’s a snippet:


Yup…I’m very intentional about learning Spanish and Igbo this year, taking creative writing courses PRN, and I look forward to designing a Journal demo…because keeping a journal is so essential, and if you’ve never tried it before, now is a good time to start. I’m trusting God to bring all these to pass.

Like I wrote in the last post, I’m finally here in NIGERIA live! And of all the things I imagined before my return, the experience has just been…amusing, to say the least. Because:

“Life is better experienced, than imagined.”

Nigeria is just d.i.f.f.e.r.e.n.t. in all ramifications, every day is another story. What can I even say?  Anyway, for now I’m here to stay ☺️

And I’m determined not just to survive but to enjoy every single blessed day in this country. So in the last few weeks I’ve been up and about, and visited a few interesting places.


And guess who had a surprise welcome-back party? I couldn’t believe my eyes that evening as friends and family gathered in our house with food, drinks and music. My homeys are amazingly deep!! I was elated. I didn’t even know anything was going on right under my nose.😂

Anyway, the year is still young and bubbling with energy, so we have to be intentional this first month…hence the title of my post. What does it mean to be judicious?

Judicious (adjective): wise, sensible, prudent, insightful, informed, clever, enlightened…

Those are few terms synonymous with the word Judicious. And here are 5 ways you can make judicious use of January:

1. Start with God.

If there’s anything I’m grateful for in 2016, it is how I started the year.

Here’s what I wrote in my journal on the first of January,


And this was my prophetic declaration for last year,


The WORD works, my life is such a TESTIMONY. So this year is not an exception, my theme is SEEKING GOD, and I know he can be found and rewards those who diligently seek him.

The scripture verse for the month is “Instead, be concerned above everything else with the Kingdom of God and with what he requires of you, and he will provide you with all these other things.”

Matthew‬ ‭6:33‬ ‭GNB‬‬

http://bible.com/296/mat.6.33.gnb

And to paraphrase it, as for me I choose God over everything else:


The song in my spirit is GIVE ME YOU (Shana Wilson)

2. Set goals.

I’ve already shared some of my goals for the year, and thanks to my TFSA sisters, I was even able to put up a vision board.


VISION BOARD 2017.

What has God impressed upon your heart for this year? How do you plan to run after the assignment(s)?

A good way to start is to set monthly/weekly planners and have a daily to-do-list. It really works for me.

Life doesn’t always turn out as planned, but planning surely makes life easier.

3. Read books.


Here are all the books currently in my library and I look forward to reading every single one. For this month I decided to finish up:

– BOOK OF QUESTIONS (Garry Poole) and

-Jesus among other gods (Ravi Zacharias)

And I have started reading these two:

– Passing it on (Myles Munroe) and

– When God whispers your name (Max Lucado)

You can tell that I’m quite excited.

4. Be diligent. 

This is a  year where you can’t afford to be lazy.

Say NO to Procrastination, slothfulness and self indulgence.

You need to be up and about and start early.

Let your motto be:

Learn, Practice and Teach.

2017 is a year to make a difference. 

MY FEGGO DIARIES just made it through the first proofreading phase a few days back, if you think writing and publishing a book is beans, pls do have a rethink. The book was due for release last November but….it shall soon become a reality in Jesus’ name.🙏🏾🙏🏾🙏🏾

Here’s my final cover page btw:
(Designed by: zoehambolu@gmail.com)

In February, I’ll be doing a challenge: 26 BLESSINGS AND COUNTING. 

I’m sure you don’t want to miss it, cos it’s gonna be loaded by God’s grace. There’s just so much to thank God for but I’ve highlighted just a few. So get ready with your notepad and pen to write everything you’re thankful for this new year.

5. Reflect.

When all is said and done, you need to take stock of how you’ve spent the year. The lessons, the challenges, and the testimonies. It’s a good thing to do that as often as possible. After keeping daily diaries consecutively for the past 4 years (2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016), I’ve decided to start a weekly journal. And it’s going to be more reflective than narrative.

Lastly, I’m creating FREE ADVERT slots per blogpost for my Facebook friends with small businesses.

I’ll come up with details ASAP.

Stay Judicious this month!


😎😎😎

Thanks for reading.

:::requ1ne:::

7 COMMON MYTHS ABOUT STAYING ABROAD

Disclaimer: This is not a SUB, just in case you’re thinking it is. It is a good, infact a great prospect, to live outside Nigeria (24/7 Internet and Electricity combo is something most young folks can’t resist) but if that’s your only life-goal, then you’re WRONG, and I will tell you why. Not that I consider myself an authority on this subject, what do I even know and how many countries have I been to?😅 Just hear me out first. I’ll try to make it interesting. Enjoy!


Actually, when you look through my list carefully, the central message is clear, most people equate success/wealth/comfort with living abroad. I’ll try to debunk each of those myths with some of the knowledge I’ve gained over a few years.

Myth 1: GOING ABROAD MEANS YOU’RE SUCCESSFUL.

It’s such a shame that a lot of young, old, educated and non-educated people alike, still carry the mindset that going abroad (whether for a period of time or a lifetime) translates to success. By success, I mean material wealth. You’ll hear folks boast about having their Father’s Cousin’s Husband in Germany or Australia or Spain, and that kinda elevates their social status among their peers. Most people don’t even know what exactly is going on with the said person. 

Folks abroad may have more chances at succeeding based on the easy access to the resources made available to them, but the criteria for success in any area of life, no matter your location, still remains the same: Diligence, Determination and Discipline. And I’ve heard a number of stories about abroadees working twice as hard as their counterparts in Nigeria.

 “If you’re lazy, you can’t survive abroad.” It’s that simple. 

Myth 2: WHERE YOU ARE DETERMINES WHO YOU ARE.

Many people are also quick to assume that it is their environment that defines them. It’s the reason why a lot of young people hustle tirelessly just to travel outside Nigeria. 

The truth is, Abroad is not all of that. Hear what the bible says:

“The earth is the Lord ʼs, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it;”
(Psalm‬ ‭24:1‬ ‭NIV‬‬)
While you can be largely influenced by your environment, it is what is on your inside that ultimately becomes enhanced. Your environment enables you to do the things you’ve always wanted to do.

People don’t necessarily change when they go abroad, they just become better (whether for good or bad) at who they already are. So a shift in your mindset is of more importance than a change in your location. 

Permit me to say this, if you’re not sure of who you are, where you live will not matter. It is people that add value to a place and not vice-versa.


Myth 3: GREAT OPPORTUNITIES ONLY EXIST IN DIASPORA.

To many going Overseas, it is like going to a fairyland where opportunities are there on the streets waiting to be picked up. This isn’t necessarily true.

Great opportunities abound around us, to the extent we choose to see them

Every Opportunity you discover was created by a need. If you can indentify the needs of people around you, you will discover that several opportunities exist, even here in Nigeria. You simply need to DISCOVER to DELIVER

Thank God for several entrepreneurs producing worthwhile goods or services across the Fashion, Music, and Food industries. It’s especially easier when you have cultivated the mindset of CONTRIBUTING to your society rather than just CONSUMING from it. 

Myth 4: EVERYTHING IS ALRIGHT OVERSEAS.
Every nation that man inhabits has some forces (or demons) to contend with. Whether it is political unrest or economic recession, famine or earthquakes, religious intolerance, militants invasion, subtle racism or drug burdens; there is always a fight behind-the-scenes. As lovely as it was to school in the Caribbean, there was always the rumor of hurricanes, volcanoes or storms lurking nearby. During my stay in St. Vincent, we experienced some fatal floods that didn’t exactly leave the island the same way, not to talk of earth tremors and several storm watches. Thank God for safety on all sides.

Those in other parts of the world can also count some of the challenges they face on a daily basis. Of course, Naija has a truckload of problems as well, but not everything is bad with us

So dear Wannabe-Abroadees, pls think before you leap. Wherever you plan to port to, make sure it is worth the cost of everything you have (which may include your life). 

Myth 5: LIFE IS AUTOMATIC WHEN YOU’RE ABROAD.

An automatic life simply put, is the life that has it all, the wealth, the glitz and the glamour. Suddenly several folks begin to look up to you like you’ve arrived. But it’s not that simple. Living abroad also has its ups and downs. Like everyone else in Naija, life happens to abroadees too. 

Some People struggle through physical, emotional or financial needs. Life abroad is generally more expensive, the next bills come in almost as soon as the previous ones get settled. The electricity/gas/cable being used are not free. Someone has to pay for all the enjoyment. A lot of people are also away from their loved ones, the loneliness faced can sometimes be terrifying. 

Trust me, not everything gets to Social media. Behind some happy faces are heavy hearts. So be careful not to turn that Uncle in Canada or Aunty in UK, into a vending machine, and don’t get mad if he or she can’t afford to send you some dollars/pounds this Christmas. 

Remember, Family isn’t a right, it’s a privilege.”

Myth 6: EVERYWHERE IN JAND IS BEAUTIFUL. 

Somewhere abroad vs LAGOS…😶

Credits:WEB

That a place is ugly, dirty or rundown, doesn’t mean it is exclusive to Nigeria. Although I’d say it’s more common here. Lots of places abroad are beautiful, no doubt. But one thing I think of is their high level of maintenance, and many of us lack that quality in Nigeria. 

Side-Story: I remember how I was almost furious with my second Landlady in SVG, when she complained about some stains on the gas cooker in my apartment. According to her, she and her husband have maintained an almost spotless cooker for 19 years (😱😁). I just had to swallow a chill pill because I initially thought I was doing my best as per cleaning the cooker. Funny enough, I’d visited some Nigerian friends’ apartments, whose cookers fared worse. [There were other things she complained of, but I won’t bore you with the details.]

My mindset about quality maintenance has since improved. 

My point is, a lot of us don’t pay enough attention to our immediate environment, much less public buildings. In  Secondary school, I even had the bad habit of defacing walls and furniture with my signature: “So and So was here”. I’ve since repented..lol.

Our carelessness doesn’t help our image as a country. And I’m a very strong advocate of keeping our environment clean. I love neat, organized and colorful places. Don’t you? 

We should all cultivate the habit of putting the trash in the trash can, and not inside the drains or on our roads. That’s a good place to start. Forget the fact that the Government sometimes employs cheap labor to clean the roads. Let the change begin with you. 

“The grass is always greener on the other side, because we’ve refused to maintain ours.”


Myth 7: STAYING ABROAD MEANS YOU ARE RICH.

Not everybody abroad is rich o. I know that from personal experience.

Not everyone has enough to even eat 3 square meals or pay their house rent.

As a foreign student (with no work-permit) plus Buhari’s Economic Recession, this year was especially tough. Thank God I made it back alive…Haha.

Pls don’t sell all your life’s investments to pursue a life outside the country without concrete plans. It’s at your own risk. That kind of pressure makes people do stupid things like drugs, con acts or prostitution and unfortunately some end up in jail. If you don’t have the credible means (skills/qualifications/funds) for sustenance abroad, pls stay at home. Tenkiu!

I hope you found the post enlightening. You can share some of your thoughts too. 

The next post in the series is 5 TIPS TO SURVIVE ABROAD. Pls watch this space.

Thank you for reading.

:::requ1ne:::

MY GREEN PASSPORT & FOUR COUNTRIES.

Hey People,

So yours sincerely returned to Nigeria a few days ago.

Thankfully, I had a smooth journey, there were no flight delays or cancellations.

I transversed the Atlantic Ocean, from the Caribbean to the United Kingdom and finally Africa. The entire journey took approximately 16 hours, minus the stop overs.

So here is a mini breakdown of my trip and the things I enjoyed about it:

1. SVG TO LONDON

I left SVG on Monday afternoon amidst hugs and some reserved tears, for St. Lucia on the LIAT airline. It was my first time in St. Lucia and though I didn’t get off the plane, I could see that it would be a cool place to visit. A few more passengers came on board and we left for Barbados. The entire journey from St. Vincent to Barbados was about 1 hr 15 minutes. Barbados is a MUST for anyone considering a vacation in the Caribbean. Thankfully, the immigration process was smooth. I’ve learnt not to take it personal when the Barbados Immigration officials ask random, annoying questions about why I’m visiting and when I’m supposed to leave. I had the experience the last two times I was in Barbados.

I was able to use the bathroom and have a light snack before boarding the British Airways to the UK. I don’t know why, but food is always tastier while I’m in transit. As a rule I eat more and try out new food. I don’t understand why LIAT airline doesn’t serve complimentary meals. There should be a law that all airlines have to serve meals no matter the duration of the flight. 

The flight to the UK was about 8 hours, but it was the most enjoyable because I had enough to eat and entertain myself with. I also watched ANGRY BIRDS Movie and THE SECRET LIFE OF PETS, and slept for the rest of the trip. 

2. LONDON TO CASABLANCA 

On arrival at the GATWICK Airport, I passed through immigration with ease and then found my way to the train station. 

With two luggages and a hand bag, it was tough navigating the several stairs I encountered. But God was faithful to bring a couple of sweet gentlemen my way at intervals. Londoners are too kind. Don’t you agree? 

“Can I help you with that?”

“Yes please, thank you so much”

“Do you need help?”

“Yes, I’ll appreciate it.”

Oh my, I was too pleased to hand over my luggage every time. I actually took on the role of a Princess in distress…hahaha.


I took the train from Gatwick to Victoria Park, then to South Kensington, from where I got on the Piccadilly line and we went from station to station, until I finally got down at the Terminal 4 of Heathrow Airport. 


I was able to have a typical English breakfast at an airport cafe, then walked around for some window (more than actual) shopping. I almost embarrassed myself while asking about some wristwatches, I didn’t realize the prices were all in 4 digits. When I discovered my error, I quietly left the store for another.

By evening, I was on board the Royal Air Maroc in a flight to Casablanca, Morocco. It was a less fun (no TV for entertainment) trip but I absolutely enjoyed the meals served. For a 3-hour trip, we had more than enough to eat and drink. Eating and Sleeping were my favorite activities, since I didn’t download any novels to read. Candy crush disappointedly refused to open as well. There was a bit of people-watching on my part too, and for the first time I discovered Non-Nigerian Pidgin speakers. 

3. CASABLANCA TO NIGERIA

I didn’t realize until my flight that English wasn’t an official language in the country, I heard more of Arabic and French. I was able to buy a few more items at the Airport and the currency in use was Euros. I later learnt their official currency is Moroccan Dirham (MAD). I was quite exhausted walking around the shops. My flight to Nigeria was around midnight and it took us 4 hours to get to Lagos. There was more eating and sleeping during the flight. Since Nigeria is a hour ahead of Morocco, we arrived about 5 a.m. (Nigerian Time). 




I was surprised that the MURITALA MOHAMMED INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, Lagos, was more sophisticated than the last time I visited (in 2014), and there was even air conditioning in the arrival lounge. So I was welcomed in the typical Nigerian way, and it was only in Nigeria that the Green Passport was classified as a priority. 

“Do you have the Nigerian Passport?”

“Yes”

“Go that way”

After passing through the immigration, there were porters all over asking if I needed help with my luggages, taxi service, or calls. I was also approached to change foreign currency. It was good to be home. There were several eateries, stands for Network providers and some business centers. I didn’t see much of souvenir shops though. A porter allowed me to call my mum and led me to an eatery where I bought a snack and bottle of water, I couldn’t get access to wifi and was really exhausted because I had to wait for about 5 hours before I was eventually picked up, thanks to Lagos traffic et al. 

Now that I’m home I would like to write about 7 common myths about staying abroad. It promises to be enlightening. Stay tuned.


Thanks for reading,

:::requ1ne:::

JOYFUL NOVEMBER!

Image credit: Swtblessings.com

Hola a todos! 

Tengo Algo Bueno Para ti

Don’t mind my SPANISH, I’ll explain later. 😊😀

I’m sooooo EXCITED and highly EXPECTANT about this Month. I remember this time last year when I did the series: A NOVEMBER TO REMEMBER. 

How time flies.

I’m thankful for the journey so far, all of God’s blessings towards me and every lesson I have learnt along the way.

 

So here are a few things that have recently happened/what-I-look-forward-to in November:

1. Scripture for the MONTH: 2 Kings 20:9a (GNB)

Yes and AMEN, because my God is a Miracle-Worker and a Promise-Keeper. I have every reason to TRUST him for what he says he will do.

I received this clear WORD in my SPIRIT on the first of this Month- GOD CAN AND GOD WILL.



And seeing how amazing he is, just a few weeks ago as I was unpacking an old box, I came across one of my prayer requests over 2 years ago:


It was such a HUGE TESTIMONY, talk about ANSWERED PRAYERS! And for me that was A SIGN that God will certainly make good every promise he made as regards the present and my future.


And that’s why it’s advisable to keep A PRAYER JOURNAL and I’m thankful for my PrayerJournal APP which I need to learn to use more often.

2. Song for the Month: WE SERVE A MIGHTY GOD (Positive Media)

Tbh, the song literally gives vibes to my body. I can’t keep still while it is playing. Btw, a Trinidadian sang it and it’s really beautiful, so Yoruba folks pls just chill. Tenkiu! 😉



3. Currently reading the following Books : 

i. The Complete Book of Questions (Gary Poole). I have answered 500 questions so far. It’s quite an enlightening read, I’ll recommend you read it with other friends. I downloaded the free PDF version. Here are the first five questions:


 and my answers to them:


ii. Me and My Big Mouth! (Joyce Meyer). I borrowed a hard copy from a friend and it’s an eye-opening book too. 


Here are some lessons I’ve gleaned:

” We are instructed to talk to and not to talk about our problems.”
” Extremes are the devil’s playground, if he cannot get a believer to totally ignore the truth, he’ll get him to be one sided and out of balance.”
“Confession is a means of speaking God’s promises into existence.”

“Thankful people are too busy being grateful for what they have, that they have no time to complain about the things they don’t have.”

“Complaining not only robs the joy of the speaker, but it also quenches the hope of the hearers.”

iii. ANXIOUS FOR NOTHING (John MacArthur). This is another deep book about what a Christian should focus on, instead of worrying endlessly. It’s really been a great resource during this phase I’m in. Here are a few lessons from the book:

” Worry is unnecessary. God doesn’t just create life, he sustains it.”

“Worry is unable to accomplish anything. You may worry yourself to death but never to a longer life.”

“To worry is needless because of God’s bounty, senseless because of his promise and useless because of its potency to achieve nothing.”

“Providing and Planning for tomorrow is taking responsibility but worrying about it, is sin.”

“The best way to avoid worrying is through prayer, followed by right thinking and right doing.”

4. Still studying the book of REVELATON with the help of Matthew Henry’s commentary.

I’m now on the 19th chapter. My favorite so far has been:


Have you let the savior in? If not, what are you waiting for? 🙂

5. Adventures: It’s been one adventure or the other in the last few weeks…I attended a mega concert of African worship, TEHILLAH AFRICANA and it was an awesome experience, followed by a Christian Talent Show that turned out unexpectedly as per the final winners, and most recently, I tried Karaoke for the very first time, with my friends. We did the song- The Heart of Worship (Matt Redman). Unfortunately, I can’t upload our video clip. Sorry😅🙈.

Lol…Worshippers in the house!!! 🙌

I’m hopeful that there will be more wonderful adventures this month. 

6. Projects: So this last month, I completed and entered two stories, for National & International prizes respectively. While I’m not counting too much on the outcome, I’m a bit hopeful that one of them at least gets picked. 

– Then I wrote about my Sojourn in SVG (Part 1) here, pls read.


– I’m still working on MY FEGGO DIARIES book. I look forward to getting it published this month. My amazing friend Z (zoehambolu@gmail.com) was kind enough to help with cover design samples for the book. You may contact him for the cover design for your book(s) at a token fee. 😉

According to my Facebook polls, this cover design wins.
I prefer this design though. What do you think?


7. Culinary Skills: My skills have remarkably improved in recent times. Yours sincerely single-handedly made Pizzas for a sale at an event. 

FINAL PRODUCT
The Process…

I recently attempted baking bread for the first time too, but sadly the yeast wasn’t enough, so it flopped badly…solid rock bread 😓. I look forward to investing more of my time this month polishing more of those skills. 

8. SPANISH 101: So yours sincerely has started learning Spanish via YouTube, thanks to a friend’s suggestion. I’m so looooooving it. I didn’t even realize how relatively easy the language is plus a huge BONUS is that my Neighbor is from Cuba. So therefore, I get to practice as often as I want to. Buenos para mí.

SPANISH 101

9. Another friend told me she was taking some free courses at Edx.org and I decided to check it out. I registered for these three courses:Think 101, Behavioral Medicine: A key to better health and Inclusive Leadership Training, and what an amazing experience it’s been. You can sign up for free here
10. A few of us volunteered at a community health fair the other Saturday, and I got to play “The Doctor” for real and no longer Student-doctor. Haha. My Medical School Journey was certainly a dream come true. 


I was able to take a quick selfie

11. BE INSPIRED:
a) Looking for what to listen to? You can subscribe to these Podcasts. 

Your Move With Andy Stanley, and

– Enjoying Everyday Life with Joyce Meyer. 

You’ll be glad you did. 

b) Looking for what to read on BLOGSPHERE? Why not try these:

1.. Omooba’s Blog: Omooba is a wonderful Christian lady who is both an Artist and a Writer. She recently started a new blog. You can check her old blog www.omoobaa.wordpress.com too. She’s refreshingly inspiring. 
2. Lola Opatayo’s Blog: The lady writes dramatic, seat-grabbing fiction like no other. You don’t want to miss out, so visit her blog.

3. Eziaha’s Blog: For Practical Spiritual Truths, Mind-blowing ideas, Awesome Encouragement and daily/weekly Motivation, Coach E’s blog is where to visit. She’s awesome both in WORDS and DEEDS. How do I know this? I know because I’ve had an ENCOUNTER with her…lol.
PS: Do you have a friend or family member who is interested in studying Medicine in the Caribbean? Kindly ask them to visit www.studymedcaribbean.com or like their Facebook page.


PPS: Hopefully, next month will come with a new series December Diary, and the focus will be on how I’m adjusting to life in Nigeria. #Anticipate

 

Thanks for reading,

Stay connected.

 😊

:::requ1ne:::