LIVING ABOVE CHALLENGES
January 31, 2018
Please note that what you are about to read is MY OWN OPINION.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything”(James 1:2-5).
Sports can teach us lot of valuable life lessons if we’ll let it. I played sports growing up and was a golf professional for three years in the 1970s. Sometimes we buy into the idea that if we will do all the right things and execute the perfect golf swing, or the perfect baseball pitch, or the perfect whatever, we are guaranteed success. The problem is that sometimes it really is true. The outcome matches the execution and the goal. However, in sports, as well as in life, success is not guaranteed.
Sports psychologist Bob Rotella says, “If you bring a smothering perfectionism to the golf course, you will probably leave with a higher handicap and a lousy disposition, because your game will never meet your expectations.”
You can make the perfect golf swing and end up in a divot or sand bunker, or make a great baseball pitch and the batter will hit a homerun. The analogies are limitless.
So what do we do when the outcome is bad? We must accept that in sports, as in life, outcomes don’t end the way we always hope.
Jesus came to be Savior of the world. He was a perfect human being without sin. He did all the right things. The result was death on the cross because a short term positive outcome was not God’s plan for the situation; He had a bigger picture in mind.
You and I need to keep the big picture in mind when short term outcomes don’t turn out well. The Bible calls this perseverance. “Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12). Ask God for the grace to accept bad outcomes even when you have done all the right things.
The above served as a real inspirational writing to me, ma. You mentioned the word “perseverance” and my lack of it for business while we were in London together in May and I was upset at that point until I took it up to God and He pulled me back to this writing in TGIF.
You are my mother and a great one you’ve been, loving and giving to me and all your other children. You’re not perfect but sometimes it’s good to communicate innermost thoughts to you and much easier on paper. I may have made mistakes in my past (as anyone does who becomes successful but even at any of those times, they become “experience” and propel me forward to another level. And this is how I encourage myself … through the way God prophesies into my situation:
“I see those things that are looming before you that have overwhelmed you. I know you’re doing your best to be strong and to overcome, but you feel sometimes weak and unable to cope. I say to you, that I am your strength in every situation. I am your peace in the storm. And, with Me nothing is impossible. Go forth in faith and with peace I will cause you; to not only endure, but to succeed, says the Lord”.
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
“Per·se·ver·ance is a noun, the word means dico wise:
“Steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement” or in Theology “continuance in a state of grace to the end, leading to eternal salvation”.
Doggedness (which you see as stubbornness), Steadfastness, Perseverance, Persistence, Tenacity, Pertinacity are all Synonyms of “perseverance”. Perseverance commonly suggests activity maintained in spite of difficulties or steadfast and long continued application. Endurance and perseverance are words usually used to win in the end. It is regularly used in favorable sense. Persistence however can be used in a favorable or unfavorable sense to imply “unremitting (and sometimes annoying) perseverance”, e.g. “persistence in a belief, persistence in talking when others wish to study”. Tenacity: with the original meaning of adhesiveness, as of glue, is dogged and determined to hold on to a dream. This word whether used literally or figuratively has favorable implications literally, e.g. “a bull dog quality of tenacity, the tenacity of one’s memory”
Mum, you hurt me with your statement (diner at Istanbul)…. Many times I wander why you say hurtful things to those I know you love so much and done so much for. Maybe we all do when we feel that person is not on the right track or is not acting out what we expect them to live by, or even sometimes it’s just simply a lack of understanding the person, the purpose or the vision God has laid on that person. Everyone has been uniquely made to live a life of purpose. To get this fulfilled it takes some a short time, some a longer time. Some have to go through the hard path, some it’s just the easy narrow way. But the great and good thing is that whatever the situation, a son/daughter of God lives out that purpose when they are fully entwined in Christ Jesus; the author and giver of each life. “Would I rather be right, or would I rather be kind?”- A statement from Wayne Dyer sometimes is a solution that encourages others.
RESPONSIBILITY FOR MY ACTIONS:
I take responsibility for my actions, whether they are the best or were just not it, I will not blame anyone, it’s my decision and I am human…. it’s in taking risks that we hit jackpot… a person who does not try anything doesn’t ever get up and get there. Courage is needed by all entrepreneurs, it always doesn’t work as well as it is planned or put down on the business plan but it always moves you to another phase and also teaches you life skills and how better to make calculated risks. I am not you; I am me and experiencing a learning curve.
I did think you understood me but definitely, you don’t understand me, my vision or my hopes. You have stood by me mum and you have turned a blind eye to my present debt concerning the rented/leased property at Victoria Island, Lagos. I am thankful for the financial cover (this has shielded me from lack in many ways for the present and I may be indebted to you now but my faith and discipline to solve my financial crisis with God’s direction and hard work will work out for my good in the end because He is the master of my life and will lift me up). God who sees the heart and can see beyond the future is in control. I will never repay bad for your goodness to me.
Can you trust me on this? I will pay back my debt one day. I am honourable and integrity rules me. Even time or death will not prevent this debt from being paid to you or the estate, ma. To have this on record, you will be given an official MOU document prepared legally attesting to the owed debt for accountability records. I take my indebtedness seriously and devoid of our personal ties; I am aware “property investment” is your income and you do fairly need your funds intact. I am presently not making money like in the past even though I’m working harder at different things. My interiors business and consultancy is facing the harsh financial times of Nigeria while ministry is not financial but giving at this time with future blessings.
A TIME OF ADVERSITY WILL BLOW AWAY AND BE STILL – Jesus spoke “Be still…”
There is a season, a time for everything. This may be my time of adversity but my story would not finish this way in the mighty name of Jesus. I have so much work to do for God and in nations that He has a plan for me and the devil knows this so he has afflicted me with financial stagnation, knowing that money is important in getting kingdom work done apart from even peace of mind to be able to pay expenses attached to living on earth. I will not stay in the pit, I will arise, you will say one day; glory be to God! No one with big dreams and purpose goes without a testing, it is normal. Many don’t come out because of lack of faith, strength, courage and perseverance but God has developed these in me with my brokenness of spirit, mind and body. You can’t ever imagine what I have been through, mum, yet I count it all joy. I am thankful to be passing through this adversity for I know it is preparation for the greater things God will make me achieve in my lifetime. I am growing and no one is beyond change but I will follow my purpose/dreams. I have learnt to embrace the following:
- GIVE UP MY LIMITING BELIEFS
About what I can or cannot do, about what is possible or impossible. From now on, I am no longer going to allow any limiting beliefs to keep me stuck in the wrong place. I Spread your wings and fly!
“A belief is not an idea held by the mind, it is an idea that holds the mind” Elly Roselle
- GIVE UP THE LUXURY OF CRITICISM
I have given up my need to always criticize things, events or people that are different from me. We are all different, yet we are all the same. We all want to be happy, we all want to love and be loved and we all want to be understood. We all want something, and something is wished by us all.
Stop labeling those things, people or events that you don’t understand as being weird or different and try opening your mind, little by little. Minds only work when open. “The highest form of ignorance is when you reject something you don’t know anything about.” Wayne Dyer
- GIVE UP ON FEAR
Fear is just an illusion, it doesn’t exist – you created it. It’s all in your mind. Correct the inside and the outside will fall into place. “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Franklin D. Roosevelt
- GIVE UP ATTACHMENT
This is a concept that, for most of us is so hard to grasp and I have to tell you that it was for me too, (it still is) but it’s not something impossible. I’m getting better and better with time and practice. The moment you detach yourself from all things, (and that doesn’t mean you give up your love for them – because love and attachment have nothing to do with one another, attachment comes from a place of fear, while love… well, real love is pure, kind, and self less, where there is love there can’t be fear, and because of that, attachment and love cannot coexist) you become so peaceful, so tolerant, so kind, and so serene. You will get to a place where you will be able to understand all things without even trying. A state beyond words.
Lastly, stop worrying about the future that cannot be controlled, it can be planned to only an extent, e.g. we can save money, live a healthy life but death is not in our hands. You talk about this so much and teh bible says it’s wrong. Phil 2:12-14 warns “Do all things without murmurings and …., “But with prayer and thanksgiving make your requests known unto God…..”. It will come at God’s time and whatever happens after that is in God’s hands concerning those we leave behind. You have done yours, let life and God control the future. I will never fight over what holds as majority with my siblings. Peaceful co-existence is what I desire. I am content with whatever God has blessed me with. I pray God to give you more healthy years on earth to see the beauty for ashes He alone can give to your dashed hopes and expectations or pain from challenges you will overcome in life. But stop worrying and thinking, its fair or not fair. God has been good to you, mum as He has been to us all. We will not witness anymore deaths in our family and we will bury you at God’s time for you to come and rest in Him.
In all situations concerning your children, your grand children, your health, the answers to questions that can’t be answered, to all those issues best left to God who is capable of carrying all our burdens and cares, continue in your faith in God, believing in the good seeds you have sown. God is not a wicked God, He hears you and will do according to His will for us all. In Jesus mighty name. Amen.