Thriving in the Meantime.

Most of our lives have changed drastically since the discovery of the virus Covid-19. And if care is not taken we would go through this season without paying full attention to how we are spending our time. Most young people have lost the zeal to get out of bed and seize the day. For some, they wish this is over and they can go back to their regular and normal life. The reality is that the future is not here but today is here and the wise among men would seek to live it well.

“Therefore see that you walk carefully [living life with honor, purpose, and courage; shunning those who tolerate and enable evil], not as the unwise, but as wise [sensible, intelligent, discerning people], making the very most of your time [on earth, recognizing and taking advantage of each opportunity and using it with wisdom and diligence], because the days are [filled with] evil. Therefore do not be foolish and thoughtless, but understand and firmly grasp what the will of the Lord is.” Ephesians 5:15-17 AMP

It is God’s will for us to live an intentional life daily. That is, a life of purpose, honor and courage. He wants us to take advantage of the time and season we are in because every season comes with it’s own advantages and limitations. It takes wisdom to identify what the advantage of this negative situation is and to harness it well. We can choose to live daily in self-pity or seek to make the best of what we’ve got. Really, the choice is ours.

“There is a season (a time appointed) for everything and a time for every delight and event or purpose under heaven— A time to be born and a time to die; A time to plant and a time to uproot what is planted. A time to kill and a time to heal; A time to tear down and a time to build up. He has made everything beautiful and appropriate in its time. He has also planted eternity [a sense of divine purpose] in the human heart [a mysterious longing which nothing under the sun can satisfy, except God]—yet man cannot find out (comprehend, grasp) what God has done (His overall plan) from the beginning to the end.” _Ecclesiastes 3:1-3,11 AMP

In each season of life, there is something required of us to do, there is a preparation for us to make for the next season, there is a lesson to learn,etc. Failure to do what we ought to do this season would hinder our progress in the next season. The ant is one wise creature that has an understanding of times and seasons. This understanding of times and seasons helps her to know what to do per time. Such wisdom is worth praying for in this season. Ask God to give you the wisdom that would help you to understand the season of life you are in and know what is expected of you to do.

“When you’re feeling lazy, come and learn a lesson from this tale of the tiny ant. Yes, all you lazybones, come learn from the example of the ant and enter into wisdom. The ants have no chief, no boss, no manager— no one has to tell them what to do. You’ll see them working and toiling all summer long, stockpiling their food in preparation for winter.” _Proverbs 6:6-8 TPT

Below are a few things you can do while you stay at home:

1. Work on your abandoned projects: If you are like most people, you would have at least one thing you started that you didn’t get around to completing or probably you’ve not started doing it at all. It might be a book you started writing or wished you had enough time for you to write, it might be a skill you started learning or wished you could learn online, it might be a book or books you haven’t quite gotten to read. It might even be your cooking skills that you want to improve on. The list is endless . So now, why not get back to doing those things on your list and see what you can achieve before this whole situation changes.

2. Spend time with your family: The truth is family relationship can be the most beautiful yet painful relationship in your life. The good news is that you have the time now to work on this very important relationship. So, this is the time for you to have that heart-to-heart with your sibling, write your Dad a letter, speak your mum’s love language, play family games, create new positive memories etc. Do all you can during this time to bridge the gap or strengthen the bond between members of your family. This is also the time for you to pray more for each member of your family. Pray for their safety and any other thing that is a concern to them. You should also ensure to be kind and helpful this season. When there is something to be done, step in and do it. Pull your weight. Work towards playing your part to making your home habitable. Since almost everyone is at home, it’s certain that there would be friction. So, pray ahead for the grace to handle such matters when they arise. Finally, Let love guide your actions.

3. Create a plan for your day: It’s easy for you to be tempted to go through your day without a concrete plan but as the saying goes “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” This is why having a plan for your day is key. It keeps you from wasting time and procrastinating. It also helps you to avoid stress and boredom. Live daily as though you would give an account for how you spend your day. You can plan your day a night before. Write out the important tasks you would want to accomplish and when you want to get them done. Allocate the minutes or hours you would spend on doing each task. This helps you to know what you ought to do per time. Asides planning, make sure you follow through on your plan. Put down your phone. Put your social media apps on freeze so you wouldn’t be getting notifications from them all day. Discipline yourself to be productive daily.

“It has been well said that the future is with the disciplined, and that quality has been placed first… For without it the other gifts, however great, will never realize their maximum potential. Only the disciplined person will rise to his highest powers. He is able to lead because he has conquered himself.” _ J. Oswald Sanders

4. Move your body: You don’t have to embrace a sedentary lifestyle this season. Learn to take a walk(you can memorize scriptures or pray as you walk) , jump rope and do anything that would keep your heart rate at its healthiest. Do all you can to ensure you do not ignore your health. When this is all over, It would pay off.

5. Give yourself grace: The times we are in are strange and not so easy to navigate. So, whenever you find that you are struggling with being positive or pushing through the day, make sure you give yourself grace. It’s okay for you to feel the emotions that comes with this season but do not sit in it for too long. Do things that would help lift your mood; Journal your thoughts, speak with a friend, eat the chocolate, drink the tea, dance, see a good movie, sleep etc.
Ensure you prioritize time with God. It is one way you can keep hope alive and keep your mind sane. Crack your Bible open daily and also spend time praying. This too shall pass!

I would love to hear from you.

1. How have you been spending your time at home?
2. What are the things you are hoping to achieve this season?

A get to know me Q & A.

Hello 🙂

I figured I have a lot of new followers and I haven’t really taken the time to introduce myself. So, here we go…

I am Esan Ayanfeoluwa Praise. Most people call me Praise. I am a Christian and a Nigerian. I graduated from University of Ilorin, Nigeria where I studied Biology Education. I am currently serving my country under the one year scheme called NYSC (National Youth Service Corps). My primary place of assignment is a school in Ibadan where I teach Animal Husbandry. I also teach Sunday School at my home Church. I love scented candles, journals and Bible with cute cover. You can say I have an eye for beauty ☺

Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria.

Where do you currently live?
I currently reside in Ibadan, Nigeria.

Dogs or Cats?
Dogs… Although, I’m not really an animal freak.

Favourite memory from High School?
The different debate I had to do within school and outside school. Then, a particular excursion I went for to Ghana, Togo and The Republic of Benin.

What year were you born?

Are you in/ have you gone to college?
I already graduated from college, which we call university here in Nigeria.

Tea or Coffee?
Tea 😀 I probably take more than I should.

What are your life goals?
My major life goal is to become a certified Family and Child Care Social Worker in order for me to see God’s intention for the family unit established and also to run my own shelter for Teen mums.

What sport do you play or have you played?
I’m not really a sport person but I prefer indoor games to outdoor games. So, I play more of indoor games.

Are you single or taken?
I am taken 🤣 but not married.

How long was your longest relationship?
I have only being into one relationship and it has lasted for about four months.

Have any book you read changed your life?
Yes, A Woman’s High Calling by Elizabeth George is one book that has changed my life. The author wrote on the significance of the instruction God gave in Titus 2: 3-5 about women being lovers of Home. And it just changed my perspective about womanhood and how key it is for me to live life as a godly woman should.

And then the Bible is one book that has changed my life and is still changing my life.

What is your favourite movie?
It’s hard to pick one 🙂 …High School Musical, Barbie Series and The Sound of Music.

Who are your favorite YouTubers and Bloggers?
YouTubers: Coffee and Bible Time and Chrystal Evans Hurst.
Bloggers: Sally Clarkson, Chrystal Evans Hurst and Elizabeth George.

Do you speak any languages and how well?

I believe I speak English and Yoruba well.

What is your love language?

My primary love language is Quality time and my secondary love language is Word of affirmation.

How many siblings do you have?
I have two older siblings; a female and a male. I am the last child of my parents.

What are your morning and evening routines?
Morning routine: I wake up most days around 5am to have my time with God.
Then around 6:30am or sometimes 7am I do my chores and that is when my day officially starts.
Evening routine: I chat with my friends in the evening around 7pm.
I sometimes read Ebooks, journal my thoughts and write a blog post.

What is on your current playlist?
I have different playlists for different moods. For my podcast playlist I have podcast by Chrystal Evans Hurst, Sally Clarkson and Bailey T. Hurley. Then for my mood lifter playlist, I have music by Jamie Grace, Nosa and Jesus Culture. For my worship playlist, I have music by Jesus Culture, Amanda Cook, Lauren Daigle, Jenn Johnson, Bryan and Katie Torwalt.

What was your dream job as a kid?
My dream job as a kid was to work as a pharmacist. I just love the fact that most pharmacist I know are smart and good looking 😂

What do you do in your free time?
At my free time, I read, listen to podcast, watch some YouTube videos, I take a nap, I journal, I sew and I chat with my friends.

What is your favourite colour and food?
My favourite colour is Purple but I also love blue. And my favourite food is Pounded Yam and Egusi soup( it’s one very delicious Nigerian meal😉).

Do you know your personality type and your Enneagram number? What is it?
Yes, I do. I am an introvert. A Phleg-Mel. My enneagram number is type 1 Wing 2 (The Activist).

What are your favourite values in friends?
Honesty, compassion, commitment and a strong love and desire for God.

What is one thing you wished people knew about you?
I wish most people know that although I can come off strong and independent, I am still a very soft hearted person who also love to make friends.

Who is your role model?
This is a little bit tricky because I have different role models for different aspect of my life. When it comes to writing and ministry to women, Elizabeth George is my go-to person. And then for Career in Social Work, a woman I know who is a Health Care Social worker, whose name is Dr. Adedolapo Komolafe is my go-to person. Then a woman who I look up to generally as a godly woman is Miss Pedetin Avoseh.

How many countries have you traveled?
I have being to three countries. Namely: Ghana, Togo and The Republic of Benin.

Have you failed at anything and what did you learn?
Yes, I have failed at a lot of things. I think the most difficult experience of failure for me was my struggle with chemistry while I was in school . I was and I am still a very diligent student but chemistry isn’t just my thing. I failed chemistry once while I was in the University and that experience humbled me. It taught me to seek help when I need it and to pray more about my academics. Prior to that time I really never had any of such experience. So, that experience helped me to understand the pain of people who struggle with school.

What motivated you to start blogging?
I started blogging in the year 2015. A Pastor (Timi Adigun) I respect so much facilitated a writing club and he helped me to set up my blog. He did this so I can write more and improve my writing skills. I got serious with blogging because I saw it as an opportunity to help young girls get to know God’s love for them. I experienced God’s love as a young ten year old girl and I know how beautiful it is to live life in the reality of God’s love for me. I want as many young girls as possible that I can help to understand God’s love for them because, I know it makes all the difference. In a world where girls are told they don’t really matter, they aren’t wanted, e.t.c. I want them to know God knows them, sees them, cares for them, loves them deeply and has great plans for them. I want them to live fearlessly because of God’s love (1 John 4:18). This was why I started blogging.

Thank you for taking the time to get to know me. I love having you here. Do you still have questions you would want me to answer ? Please, write them in the comment box below. I would also love to get to know you. If you can, tell me a little about yourself. Thank you. I look forward to hearing from you.

Freedom from fear.

“We are people of flesh and blood. This is why Jesus became one of us. He died to destroy the devil, who had power over death. But he also died to rescue all of us who live each day in fear of dying.” Hebrews 2:14-15 CEV

We live in critical times when a lot of people live in fear and are uncertain about the future. One of the main fear people have this season is the fear of death. Although, a lot of people are taking precaution against the spread of the corona virus, it is still amazing how afraid they are. We wouldn’t be so afraid if we remember that there is one who has power over death. The writer of Hebrews made us to understand in the above scripture that Jesus died to destroy the one who had power over death (that is, the devil) but that is not all, he also died to rescue all who live each day in fear of death. It is not God’s intention for us to live in fear and that is why the scriptures says in Romans 8:15 that “For the Spirit that God has given you does not make you slaves and cause you to be afraid; instead, the Spirit makes you God’s children, and by the Spirit’s power we cry out to God, “Father! my Father!” Romans 8:15 GNT.

We wouldn’t be so afraid if we remember that we have a Father who takes care of his own. If you’ve placed faith alone in Christ alone, you know that you would be sheltered (Psalm 83:3b) and kept safe. You have eternal life within you and nothing can snatch you out of the Father’s hand (John 10:28-29). The Spirit God gave us as believers is that of power, love and sound mind. We haven’t been given the spirit of fear (1 Tim 1:7). Whenever you sense as a child of God that you are becoming anxious or afraid remember that we’ve been commanded not to be anxious and to make our request known to God in prayers (Phil 4:6-7).

Prayer is key this season because that is where you get to exchange your fear for faith and your trouble for peace. Faith is the antidote to fear.

“Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 14:1, 27 NLT

Jesus left those who believe in him the gift of peace; a gift the world cannot give. Every child of God has access to this gift but we have to take responsibility for it. And we do this by guarding the gate of our eyes and ears. We concentrate more on what the word of God says than what the news says.

“Dear friend, listen well to my words; tune your ears to my voice. Keep my message in plain view at all times. Concentrate! Learn it by heart! Those who discover these words live, really live; body and soul, they’re bursting with health. Keep vigilant watch over your heart; that’s where life starts.” Proverbs 4:20-23 MSG

The news of the corona virus is every where but if this is what we fill our heart with, we will soon discover that we are lacking peace, even though it is ours in Christ. And this is why the scripture says in Isaiah 26:3 that ” You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” (NLT). We will begin to enjoy peace this season, when we fix our thoughts on God and not on the circumstance the world is in.

“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace. In the world you have tribulation and distress and suffering, but be courageous [be confident, be undaunted, be filled with joy]; I have overcome the world.” [My conquest is accomplished, My victory abiding.] John 16:33 AMP

Remember, that Jesus didn’t promise us a life of comfort on earth. The only thing He promised us is “peace” and “victory” over the trouble(s) that may come our way. He said, “Be courageous!” because he knows our natural tendency as human is to be afraid. The good news is that we know by the scriptures that this whole thing will end in victory for everyone who is on the Lord’s side.

So, let your confession this season be that of life. Confess what you believe.

“The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.” Proverbs 18:21 NLT

Speak life! This is the best time to gather scriptures on health and protection and speak them over yourself and everyone connected to you. Just in case you aren’t sure of what portion of the Bible you can use for this confession of faith, try Psalm 91. Just bear in mind that you will reap what you sow, be it life or death.

And they have defeated him by the blood of the Lamb and by their testimony. And they did not love their lives so much that they were afraid to die.” Revelation 12:11 NLT

Finally, just in case you haven’t placed faith alone in Christ alone, this is a very dangerous time for you to live in because you are vulnerable. That can change now if you would acknowledge that you are a sinner in need of a saviour and that Jesus Christ died for your sins and rose on the third day so you can have eternal life. Pray and ask Jesus to forgive you your sins and ask him to come into your heart.

“For with the heart a person believes [in Christ as Savior] resulting in his justification [that is, being made righteous—being freed of the guilt of sin and made acceptable to God]; and with the mouth he acknowledges and confesses [his faith openly], resulting in and confirming [his] salvation.” Romans 10:10 AMP

Dear friend, I decree shalom (the Peace of God) upon you and all that is yours. By God’s mercy and grace You will remain untouched and you will rejoice when this is over. In Jesus name. Amen.

Are you playing the comparison game?

I have an elder sister who I love deeply and who my physical resemblance with is undeniable. The only thing is that although we look so much a like physically, we are totally different. I am an introvert while she is an extrovert and this influences the way we do our things. I grew up wishing to be more like her because everyone seem to love and appreciate her personality. I have even heard my parents say they wish I can be more like her. The truth is, God did not design me to be like anyone else. He made everyone of us as unique individuals. And whenever we compare ourselves with others we are directly saying that we are not pleased with who we are.

“Oh, don’t worry; we wouldn’t dare say that we are as wonderful as these other men who tell you how important they are! But they are only comparing themselves with each other, using themselves as the standard of measurement. How ignorant!” _2 Corinthians 10:12 NLT

It is unwise for you to compare yourself with anyone. God (expressed in the image of Christ) is our perfect example and standard and not anyone else. Nobody can tell you who you ought to be but God Himself. And God has given you everything you need to be all He created you to be.

“The sun has its own beauty, the moon another beauty, and the stars a different beauty; and even among stars there are different kinds of beauty.” _1 Corinthians 15:41 GNT

As the sun, the moon and the stars are unique in their glory and the expression of their beauty, is the same way God created us as unique individuals. We begin to shine in our uniqueness when we accept who God made us to be. Below are things you can do to keep yourself from playing the comparison game:

1. Soak yourself in the reality of God’s love for you: at the root of every comparison issue is a poor understanding of God’s love. When you understand that God made you, loves you and accepts you, it changes a lot of things for you. The moment the reality of God’s love dawned on me, I no longer seek approval from people and neither do I compare myself with anyone. Search out scriptures that reminds you of God’s love and meditate on it until it’s truth fills you up.

“You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it.” _Psalms 139:13-14 NLT

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.” _Ephesians 1:3-6 NKJV

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you [and approved of you as My chosen instrument], And before you were born I consecrated you [to Myself as My own]; I have appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” _Jeremiah 1:5 AMP

2. Celebrate your uniqueness: God gave everyone of us gifts and strength that makes us unique. And the more you concentrate on your strength and use your gifts, the more you will begin to see yourself in a positive light. Whenever we choose to use the gifts God has given us, we grow and God blesses those gifts. Find out what you excel at and concentrate on doing that more. Do not belittle the gifts God has given you. You wish to be like someone else because that person is using his or her gifts. You will begin to shine in your own unique way when you begin to use your gifts. So, If you enjoy singing, do it well. If you enjoy writing, do more of that. If you enjoy sewing or making crafts give your time and resources to it. Find your niche and grow from there! Trade with your talents and don’t bury them.

“For it is just like a man who was about to take a journey, and he called his servants together and entrusted them with his possessions. To one he gave five talents, to another, two, and to another, one, each according to his own ability; and then he went on his journey. The one who had received the five talents went at once and traded with them, and he [made a profit and] gained five more. Likewise the one who had two [made a profit and] gained two more. But the one who had received the one went and dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.”_ Matthew 25:14-18 AMP

3. Work on your weakness(es): No human is perfect. We all have at least a weakness we are not proud of. The good news is that, God’s strength is made perfect in our weakness. So, seek to identify what your weakness is and work to be better. For example, if your weakness is that you tend to be a little sloppy, work on that. Do the practical things the Holy Spirit will reveal to you( in God’s word) to do in order for you to be better. Read books that addresses your weakness and apply the principles you learn from them. Working on your weaknesses will help you to stop freting over them but to search for ways to be better. It will also help you to stop viewing yourself in the light of your weakness but in the light of the progress you’ve made. There is room for improvement and you can be better.

4. Live a life you love: Life is a gift and it is God’s desire for you to live a rich and satisfying life. So, if currently there are things that you are not pleased with and you know you can do something to change the situation, please do. Give your best to the life God has given you. Work on your dreams. Grow where God has placed you. The people you wish to be like are giving themselves to the life they have. So, decide to make the changes you can make and decide to make the best of the situations you cannot change. Live a life you would be proud of. Appreciate the gift of your life and think the best of yourself. In Chrystal Evans Hurst words “Life is not a dress rehearsal. You only get one shot at it. Use it well.”

A Servant Heart.

“She equips herself with strength [spiritual, mental, and physical fitness for her God-given task] And makes her arms strong.”_Proverbs 31:17 AMP “She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future.” _Proverbs 31:25 NLT

Like most young girls, my journey to becoming industrious and domesticated has not been smooth. I was in my mid teen years before the importance of being domesticated really began to dawn on me. I have always being the kind of girl who enjoys reading and taking naps. I help out at home but not always with the right attitude. Some days, I give myself the excuse of being a low energy kind of person and I choose not to do my chores (at least not when my mum needs me to get them done). Pathetic right?… I know, but over the years I have made so much progress and I want to help as many young girls that are like me to do same.

“For even the Son of Man did not come expecting to be served by everyone, but to serve everyone, and to give his life in exchange for the salvation of many.” _Matthew 20:28 TPT

The above scripture is one scripture that changed my life forever. It exposed the nature of my natural selfish heart to me compared to that which God wants me to possess. It brought me to the place of prayer, propelled me to search out women of the Bible that served like Jesus did and finally motivated me to serve.
An example of a woman that lived a life of service is the Proverbs 31 Woman. Listen, before you roll your eyes and tell me she is a married woman and you are not, remember King Lemuel’s mum wrote to him in Proverbs 31, instructing him on qualities to look for in a potential bride. So, the passage is relevant to you as a young woman. A servant Heart is something every God girl should seek to cultivate because the Christian life is one of selfless service to others. Serving is sometimes called help or ministering. It is the basic ability to help other people. Being a servant is a sign of Christian maturity. It is the true mark of Christ (Phil 2:7), who served to the point of death (Matthew 20:28).

The Proverbs 31 woman is mentally tough and she is physically strong. In Proverbs 31:17 you get to see her attitude (her mental toughness) and her work (her physical strength). Service most times involves physical work and without mental toughness you will never get around to doing the actual physical work. Below are some of the qualities you need to improve your mental attitude towards work:

1. Commitment: “All hard work brings a profit.” (Prov 14:23). Make a commitment to be a hard worker and to always be active doing something. “She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.” _Proverbs 31:27 NIV. Refuse to be idle. Esteem others better than yourself and commit yourself to service (Phil 2:3).

2. Willingness: You can have a heart commitment to do the work, but you must also be willing to actually do it. Talk is good but action is better. Resolve to be a willing worker and to work joyfully.
“Do everything without complaining or arguing,” _Philippians 2:14 GNT
“Whatever you do [whatever your task may be], work from the soul [that is, put in your very best effort], as [something done] for the Lord and not for men,” _Colossians 3:23 AMP
“She looks for wool and flax And works with willing hands in delight.”_ Proverbs 31:13 AMP

3. Motivation: Motivation is the “why” of everything you do. It gives you strength of mind as you tackle your work. My attitude towards my duty at home changed when I truly understood the “why” behind what I do. My tasks ceases to be mundane or meaningless because now I know my action and attitude contribute to the state of my home (both the people and the place) either positively or negatively. I know my actions or inaction either builds up my home or pulls it down (Proverbs 14:1). Now, even on days when I am tired and the last thing I want to do is to serve, I remember my “Why” and I do the needful.
Think about the impact you will have on others(Including your family members) as you express Christ’s love to them through your willing service.

“Love for others is grown and lived out as you serve and care for them.” _Elizabeth George

4. Discipline: It helps you to make right choices, spend your time and energy wisely and not give in to laziness, procrastination and disorganization. Discipline helps you to do what you know you should do. The Holy Spirit produces self-control in you which helps you to be disciplined. Pray for the grace to exercise self-control daily.

Beyond the qualities above, there are certain things I want you to take note of as you continue on your journey to becoming a woman with a servant heart.
• Pray for those you serve and for yourself. Pray specifically about your attitude toward your chores. God will change your heart. He will give you a heart of love. God is the key to love and energy and the more you depend on Him, the more He will help you. So, Pray!

• Use scripture for pep talk. Memorize scriptures that encourage you to be joyous in your work. Proverbs 6:6-8 is my go-to scripture for overcoming the feeling of being lazy and tired. It motivates me every time I recite it to myself and brings it’s truth to bear. Search for a scripture that will do same for you.

• Do your work “as to the Lord.” God is your Boss and He will reward you.

• Plan to do good, to serve, to help others and assist them whenever the opportunity present itself. Live to love others, to do them good at every opportunity, to make people’s lives easier and better. Be like Jesus who goes about doing good( Acts 10:38).
“God planned for us to do good things and to live as he has always wanted us to live. This is why he sent Christ to make us what we are.” _Ephesians 2:10 CEV

• Learn all you can now about home making. You are not too young to start learning. Learn from your mom or any older woman in your life. Read books. Doing this will help you to be light years ahead in possessing the how-to knowledge you will need to take care of your future home and the people who will live there.

A Little Place by Meade McGuire

“Where shall I work today, dearLord?”

And my love flowed warm and free. He answered and said,
“See that little place? Tend that placefor Me.”
I answered and said, “Oh no, not there!
No one would ever see.
No matter how well my work was done,
Not that place for me!”
His voice, when He spoke, was soft and kind,
He answered me tenderly:
“Little one, search that heart of thine.
Are you working for them or ME?
Nazareth was a little place…
so was Galilee.”

Let’s Chat:
1. What is your favourite chore and least favorite chore to do? What will you do to change your attitude toward your least favorite chore?
2. Do you often find yourself giving orders to people or serving them? What are the changes you will make to be more willing to serve?

3. In what ways will you serve your people this week?

I would love to hear from you.

A walk beside still waters.

“Your inheritance in Christ is freedom and life and joy and every good gift. Your inheritance is victory and a heart that is not striving or filled with fear but at rest.” _ Stasi Eldredge.

Have you ever been to the beach? I wonder what your experience there was like. Did you take a walk barefooted by the sea feeling the warmth of the sand beneath your feet? Did you pay attention to the beauty of the sunset? Or maybe you felt the cool breeze from the sea blow across your face or through your hair? I know serene (Peace, tranquility) is one word that describes the experience of most people at the beach.

Peace is often what we seek in our everyday live but for a lot of people it seems far-fetched. It is God’s design for your soul to be at rest no matter your circumstance. It is not His desire for your heart to be troubled or for you to be agitated but rather for you to experience peace that surpasses all understanding: the kind of peace that teaches you how to think and feel (Phil 4:6-7 CEV)

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.” _Psalms 23:1-2 NKJV

“Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand”. _John 10:7-11,28 NKJV

Psalm 23:1-2 introduces God to us (in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ) as the good shepherd, one who takes responsibility for the welfare of those who place faith in Him. The good shepherd brings us to the still waters: a place where we can experience peace because we know He is our portion; a place where our mind is stayed on Him.

“You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” _Isaiah 26:3 NLT

The still waters experience is the experience that brings refreshing to our soul and it is an experience God wants us to have daily.
There are situations in life that like troubled waters will cause you to be afraid but the assurance of the presence of the Good shepherd with you should help you keep your mind at rest.

“The floods have lifted up, O Lord , The floods have lifted up their voice; The floods lift up their waves. The Lord on high is mightier Than the noise of many waters, Than the mighty waves of the sea.” _Psalms 93:3-4 NKJV

“God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed, And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth! The Lord of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah” _Psalms 46:1-3, 10-11 NKJV

Below are steps you can take to daily have the still waters experience:

1. Daily follow the leading of the shepherd: “Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peace.” _Romans 8:5-6NLT

Romans 8:5-6 teaches that the daily experience of a person who is lead and controlled by God is “Life” and “Peace.” Your security as God’s sheep comes from knowing you are lead of God. You get into trouble when you stop following His leading. Seek to daily learn from Him, to do His will and to stay connected to Him.

“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.”_ John 10:27 NKJV

Nothing brings a person to a state of unrest faster like disobedience. Learn to walk daily in obedience to God’s word. Remember, He is the one who will lead you beside still waters and not the other way round. It is only in Him that you can find rest for your soul (Matthew 11:28-29).

2. Trust in His ability to make good on His promise to give you His peace:

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” _John 14:27 NLT

Never forget that the peace of God is your inheritance. Learn to ask for it in the place of prayer. Peace is an element of the fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5:22). Pray that God births it in you daily. Lay hold of your God given peace and guard it in the place of prayer.

“I pray that the God who gives hope will fill you with much joy and peace while you trust in Him.”_ Romans 15:13a NIV

3. Learn to carry your burden to Him in prayer:

“Praise the Lord, who carries our burdens day after day; he is the God who saves us.” _Psalm 68:19 GNT

“Humble yourselves, then, under God’s mighty hand, so that he will lift you up in his own good time. Leave all your worries with him, because he cares for you. Be alert, be on watch! Your enemy, the Devil, roams around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Be firm in your faith and resist him, because you know that other believers in all the world are going through the same kind of sufferings.” _1 Peter 5:6-9 GNT

“At all times carry faith as a shield; for with it you will be able to put out all the burning arrows shot by the Evil One.”_Ephesians 6:16 GNT

It is not your responsibility to bear your burden rather It is God’s responsibility. Your responsibility is to present the matter(s) that causes your heart to be troubled to Him in the place of prayer. This is why prayer is key. It helps you to take your position in submission to God and to resist the enemy from a place of steadfast faith. You cannot enjoy peace on this side of eternity without being a woman of prayer.

4. Daily feed on His word:

“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” _John 16:33 NLT

God’s word serves as a shock absorber for your soul. The word of God is a beacon of light in this dark world and it will serve as a source of encouragement to you during difficult times. It is an indispensable weapon in the warfare against the enemy of our soul. Read it, meditate on it and learn to wield it accurately.

5. Rejoice in your victory in Christ:

” But thanks be to God! For in union with Christ we are always led by God as prisoners in Christ’s victory procession. God uses us to make the knowledge about Christ spread everywhere like a sweet fragrance. For we are like a sweet-smelling incense offered by Christ to God, which spreads among those who are being saved and those who are being lost. For those who are being lost, it is a deadly stench that kills; but for those who are being saved, it is a fragrance that brings life. Who, then, is capable for such a task?” _2 Corinthians 2:14-16 GNT

“For this reason we never become discouraged. Even though our physical being is gradually decaying, yet our spiritual being is renewed day after day. And this small and temporary trouble we suffer will bring us a tremendous and eternal glory, much greater than the trouble. For we fix our attention, not on things that are seen, but on things that are unseen. What can be seen lasts only for a time, but what cannot be seen lasts forever.”_ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 GNT

Our mindset as believers no matter what we are going through is that of victory. Christ has already won the victory for us. We are not fighting for victory but from a place of victory. The mindset of victory and the accurate understanding of the purposes of God in your present circumstance will help you to remain at rest and at peace. You will have the assurance that all things are working together for your good even if you are yet to see it. You will be able to rejoice and give thanks in everything (1 Thes 5:16-18). And you will be able to laugh without fear of the future (Prov 31:25). Pray for the mind of Christ and the ability to view your situation through God’s eyes. May you never be bereaved of perspective. May you daily do all it takes to take a walk with the shepherd of your soul beside still waters.

Let’s Chat:

* How would you describe your state of mind right now?

*In what ways have you experienced peace in time past and what makes you lose your peace?

I would love to hear from you.

Faith and Patience.

“That you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”
Hebrews 6:12 (NKJV)

Toleen was bored sick of staying at home reading. Being a high flying student, she had made sure to start reading as soon as the session started. As good as the constant revisions have been, Toleen just couldn’t help but wonder how more interesting her life will be if she can have some of the freedom her friends have or if she can quickly grow up, go to the university, get a great job and live independent of her parents.

Life seems so slow for Toleen. Her parents had encouraged her to stay home on weekends to read and by agreeing, she had missed out on the fun the others were having attending weekend JAMB and WAEC lessons. She loves her parents and she knows they want the best for her but sometimes, she just can’t help feeling caged in her routinous living.

Toleen rolls her eyes, sighs and reminds herself to be grateful for the checks and balances she has in her life. She has loving parents, boisterous siblings and godly friends with whom she has good times with.

Toleen picks up her books with renewed vigour. There is a time for everything and she will find fun in doing the right things at the right time. The right thing for now is to read and prepare for the upcoming exams.

Have you ever felt like Toleen? I know I have. There was a time when time seemed to stretch like an endless road and all I could do was day dream about the life I wanted. Sometimes, feeling that way can lead to us growing impatient with our present placement in life. And impatience is not from God.

Don’t get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with dreaming about the next phase of life we want to find ourselves, making plans about moving forward and consequently working towards those plans. Those are not signs of impatience, they are evidence of a mind alert to the workings of God in his or her life and of preparedness to journey through the process of growth. Impatience, on the other hand, comes with a pang of tiredness, resentment for the present and wistful longing for the future without any adequate preparation on how to survive in that future. Impatience makes you wish to be all grown up and out of your home without enjoying the process by which that will happen. You forget that truly enjoying and giving thanks to God for a phase in your life opens you up to having God unlock the door for a higher phase. Impatience makes you hiss, sigh and frown a lot and these in turn work negatively on your face muscles and you know we can’t be doing that to our precious face muscles?!

Patience is not a lazy approach to life as some may think. It is not a lack of vision. In fact, I dare say that a patient man has more vision than an impatient man. A patient man sees the process to attain a goal while not losing sight of the goal ahead. An impatiet man, on the other hand, sees the goal alone but lacks plans or the ‘patience’ to adequately prepare for the goal. Tell me, who do you think will attain his goals faster?

I hope you see now that impatience is a vicious cycle that baits you with promises of a better tomorrow without you enjoying the process of today. The tomorrows never end. There is always a goal to attain. Thus, enjoy the process of becoming. Enjoy the period you get to spend in secondary school. Be grateful when you gain admission into the university and don’t fall into the folly of wishing that you graduate already because you are already tired of the university. Don’t be caught anxious praying earnestly that NYSC be over already and that you begin to earn ‘cool’ cash in the job you really want and not this one that NYSC posted you to…The cycle can be unending.

Impatience turns us to lousy whiners without we knowing it.

The cure to impatience is faith. Let us be committed to searching through holy scriptures and be encouraged by people who through faith and patience inherited the promises given to them. Remember, there is a promise God has given to you. He has thoughts of good and not of evil towards you. He has plans to prosper you and bring you to His expected end for you. Remember Jesus who patiently and diligently built character in the 30 quiet years of his life. Think of Him who had the power to have fast forwarded the last three years of his life to have happened faster than it did but who didn’t. Remember David the shepherd boy who later became one of the greatest kings of Israel. Remember Esther who patiently went through the 12 months of purification required of her and was later chosen to be queen. The scriptures are replete with examples of people who showed patience and faith. Our immediate environment also do not lack such great examples. Search them out, seek counsel and pray that God will fill you with patience and faith even as you journey through life.

Questions for engagement?

1) What phase of your life are you in right now that you can’t seem to wait to move past?
2) How do you intend to move forward from that phase?
3) Have there been times when you have been patient and it ended with testimonies?
4) Have there been times when you were patient and you ended up regretting it?
5) Would you like us to pray along with you on any plan or project you are trusting God for?
Please do comment in the comment section. I love you all and I’m in faith with you.
P.S: I am the Toleen in the story… Smiles…

About the Author:

Elujulo Oluwatobiloba Mabel is a candidate of the Nigerian Bar. She recently completed the one year academic and practical training at the Nigerian Law School, Yenegoa campus in January, 2020. Tobi, as she is fondly called, graduated from the University of Ibadan, Ibadan where she finished with first class honours from the Faculty of Law. Her secondary school alma matter is the prestigious Pacesetters Comprehensive College, Ashipa Road, Ibadan.

Tobi loves the city of Ibadan. She also loves reading and writing literary articles, watching Nickelodeon and lying down on brown coloured couches.

She believes that getting saved when she was in J.S.S 1 caused a major shift in the trajectory of her life and getting filled with the Holy Spirit with the evidence of speaking in tongues while in the university has set her on the right course in life. Tobi has a passion for speaking to young persons and inspiring them to start living intentionally more early in life.
How best to live more intentionally in life than to accept Jesus as one’s Lord and personal saviour?

Oluwatobiloba enjoys conversations on God, career, family, relationships, law, academics and literature.
She is open to conversations and her social media handles are
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