Day 26: Motunrayo

Motunrayo.jpg

*nods sagely*

So what I’m doing basically this year is filling myself up so completely that I overflow with goodness.

I’m first of all emptying myself of all the toxicity and anger and second guessing and bitterness and dissatisfaction and sadness.

And I’m filling up with:

WORK

Ecclesiastes 9 v10:

‘Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might….’

Keeping busy keeps me sane. So whatever my hands find to do. Whatever my mind can conceive, I will bring to life with my hands. I have already volunteered for two projects this year, and it’s only the first month. And I am looking for more to take on. If you have any project and you need help on your team, reach me please. My email address is mayoakwe@gmail.com.

LOVE

1st Corinthians 13:1

‘If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not []love [for others growing out of God’s love for me], then I have become only a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal [just an annoying distraction]…’

I actually have so much love to give its stunning. I will no longer hold back from loving purely. Every human who comes in contact with me will experience a large chunk of it.  E go be like party pack. You get some love, they get some love, everybody gets some love!

POSITIVITY

Proverbs 17:22

‘A happy heart is good medicine and a joyful mind causes healing,
But a broken spirit dries up the bones’

No more negatives. All that zero to hundred stuff my mind does has to be put in check this year.

This year, everything is bright and beautiful. Everything is awesome and going well. No matter the circumstances, I will only see goodness. In people, in situations, in life.

GOD

John 14:26 

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.”

The last part of last year was an amazing revelation for me: The Holy Spirit is my friend. He literally came through for me EVERY TIME. Even on the most mundane, ridiculous issues. He came through as a friend, a teacher and a helper. I want me more of that this year.

FAMILY

Psalm 103:17

‘But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children’

This is the year that I will spoil my family. With all of me and all of my resources. This is the year I will do way better with picking up calls and replying texts (even the annoying BC messages). This is the year I stop saying I’m broke and actually just spend on my folks.

Last year, I registered and prepared for and sat an examination in 3 weeks that other people did in 6 months. Aspa, Motunrayo, the queen of playing herself. When I see the results and I pass, I’m dressing up in a fancy dress and taking myself out to a fancy dinner in a fancy restaurant. If all goes well, I should write another one this year.

Happy 2017 everyone!! May you never have a better last year!!

Day 12: Christopher

My hope for Silver ‘17

My name is Christopher and I turn 25 today. I waited until this morning to write this particular paragraph in the hope I would have some particular insight, some special feels on this morning of the end of the first quarter of my life. *gulp*. But asides the slight queasiness in my stomach from the balls of semo and okro soup I tried to force down last night, and an itchiness to my throat, which might be the last stages of puberty setting in, I feel no different. LOL. Okay, I do. I feel like Adulting just started Part 2.

This is my first time writing about myself like this (for public consumption, that is), and I will try my best to be completely honest. It ought to be therapeutic. LOL. So uhm..TMI alert. Thanks again, Tokunbo.

I have been having a lot of terrible years, or to paraphrase, I have been having a lot of years where I do not seem to achieve all I want. I have been having years where I am far from fulfilled, years filled with regrets. However, at the tail end of last year, I had a turn around. I came out of 2016 fulfilled and more than a bit dazzled. I realized a number of things which I am going to act on this year:

GOD answers prayers

A long time ago I prayed for GOD to take control of my affairs and help me dictate them as they should go. I guess I forgot about the prayer or did not really understand the ramifications of what I was praying for because, like my Tati will always tell me, “Oare, you cannot be faster than GOD”, and no matter how much I wanted some things or even prayed for them, there was always something holding it all back. Here in is the grace, when the time was perfect, it all worked out for my good.

A lot of people complained about last year being terrible, but that was the year that GOD crowned my efforts with glory, sat me on the Seat of Kings and established me. My daily prayer now is from Deuteronomy 8:18 – “But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God, for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day”. I am scared of getting proud and forgetting the grace that sustained me.

In this year:

I want to learn.

I have been afforded an opportunity to work at an international company doing work that is intrinsic to all I studied in my undergrad and postgrad school. I have an opportunity to work with young, brilliant and exposed people, to be trained with the best kind of equipment under the watch of the most skilled and experienced of guys. I want to learn in this year. I want to be the best at what I do. I want to be Outstanding in my work. I also want to learn how to be a team player, to really cooperate in a team, to know how to motivate people and have them follow me. I want to absorb, to be a sponge to soak in all the knowledge I can in this year.

I want to be happy.

A new friend of mine I met on Saturday showed me a passage in Ecclesiastes 7:16 – “So don’t be too good or too wise! Why destroy yourself?”, while she was trying to get me to understand the importance of the “occasional selfishness”. LOL. While I still do not completely agree with her, I have decided in this new year to be happy for me. I will not let myself be bogged down by people who will bring down my emotions and force me to be sad with them. I will be happy in this year, and seize the joy where I find it.

I am going to buy a car.

Hehe. I saw a tweet a few days ago, one of those “RT if you…” and this was about buying a car this year. Hehe. I will buy my first car in this year, or at the very most as my next birthday present. Hehe. The biggest question now is a SUV or a late-model Honda Civic like Chuns said I look good in? LOL.

As for relationships…

I have never been as uncertain about my relationship life as I am now. Torn between deciding what is best for me, for my future and what will make me happy in the moment. I am 25 years old now, a Silver Gentleman, if you know waramsaying..and I cannot be playing again. By next year, my conservative mother will start asking me about bringing a bride before she starts growing more gray. So I hope that in this year, I will figure out and decide and choose and stay.

And Kanary Concepts…

I started Kanary Concepts as a startup for startups (and the first feather on Kanary, the brand I think I was born to build) a few years ago, 2014 to be more precise, and since then I have not been able to get the company to fly – just been fluttering. I have paused on several occasions, for grad school, to work at another company for experience and now again. I have had a lot of sleepless nights wondering what to do with Kanary, which is a dream of success I cannot help having every single time, and in this year I hope to find a solution. I am not certain what that solution would be, but I intend to find it.

I will be more family-oriented

I love my family, extended and nuclear, and I intend to be more family oriented in this new year. I want to pay fees and rent, as GOD blesses me. I want to remember birthdays and send gifts. I want to visit folks and make dining table jokes. I want to learn new recipes and teach some of mine. I want to give advice to the youngsters and take some to drink their first premium lager.

Writing and #theNDG

I wrote a novel last year which I intended to publish before November. I honestly do not know why I did not publish. My beta readers loved it, and I know it was damned good book. But for some reason, I did not send it to any publishers. Maybe because I was doubtful of my own art, or maybe I was just lazy, IDK. Thing is, I intend to do that “sending out to publishers” this year. I do not know what ramifications being a published author might have for my chosen career, but I want to write and be read, so…

Still on writing, I did a lot of that in the last year, on a variety of topics from politics and finance all the way to relationships and health, none of which was for me though. On the bright side, a lot of it was fiction, not the escapist kind though, more like the kind where I write a product review for a new plug-in without having actually used the plug-in before. Anyway, I did a lot of that as a freelancer, and made some necessary “recession rate” dollars at the same time, but I do not need that any more. So, I hope in this new year I would find the time to write a lot more, real fictional stories on aljanusi.com like I used to, comic stuff, action stuff, bring back some of my favourite characters like Ali and Mrs. Adebowale and write about my experiences, humourous pieces which manage to offer hope and teach something.

Speaking

I have always been a talker, I know how to craft words in front of large audiences. I also understand the need for genuine information in the world, truthful stuff that will benefit. I used to give those kind of talks back in school and I hope I would be afforded the opportunity to again. To share ideas. I hope I get invited to give a TED talk in this year. Hehe.

Finally, my spiritual life

The year 2016 probably had me at my most spiritual ever. I learned a lot about the bible, I learned faith too. However, 2016 also had a lot of ups and downs, many times with me rolling about in filth. I however learned the importance of forgiveness, going from my own sins to the sins that were committed against me. I have already started the year missing one Sunday service and I hope in this new year, I surpass the level I was at before, I overcome the temptations and passions which dog me, and go forth purer than before.

These are my hopes, my dreams, my plans for 2017, in all of their ambiguity. HEHE. I hope I can be more definite by the midyear review, more certain with the targets met and the ones still in sight. Pray for me.

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Day 9: Priiye

Happy new year guysssssss 💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾
It’s new a year which means new grace, new favour, new beginnings, new opportunities, new blessings, everything new 🙌🏾
I love new beginnings
Thank you Jesus for  365 days of your unending love and  faithfulness.
🎶 Onise Iyanu
You are the God of awesome wonders
I’ve tasted of your power
Onise Iyanu
You have shown me so much mercy
Much more than I deserve 🎶
Year 2016 was indeed a great year for me, God came through for me and mine majorly. I have loadssssss of testimonies but hey the the bible says in Haggai 2:9 that the Glory of 2017 will be greater than 2016 (paraphrased) 💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾
As usual, the negative prophecies and postulations about how terrible 2017 will be, recession and all, have been said… but you know what?! MY CASE IS DIFFERENT!!!!! 🙌🏾
Isaiah 26:3b God said he will keep me in perfect peace because I trust in him.
He makes the feet of me and mine like hinds’ feet and set us in our high places in 2017 (Psalm 18 :33)
In this recession, like Isaac in Gérar (Gen 26:12-14)  me and mine will prosper in every good work.
How do I know that 2017 will be LIT?! 💃🏾💃🏾
God has crowned 2017 with abundance even the paths that are designed to be hard this year will overflow with abundance ( Psalm 65 :11 NLT)
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Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us (Eph 3:20) I commit me and mine 2017, for I know who I believe I’m persuaded that he is able to keep me and mine all through 2017 in perfect peace. (2Tim 1:12) So confident that there will be a performance of every good thing spoken concerning me! 💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾💃🏾 Like Peter, let’s try and keep our eyes on Jesus and not on the storms of life. As we continue to look at Jesus, we will walk over our storms.
Let’s keep saying what God is saying because indeed, OUR CASE IS DIFFERENT! Wishing us all a LIT 2017.

Dusk 16: Ashiwel

I don’t like appraisals. You sit there confronting inconvenient truths about your hitherto assumed awesomeness and a knot forms in your stomach.
I really wanted nothing but for 2016 to be the fireworks. Instead, I think that I have spent a considerable chunk of it staring at the universe, scowl on my face, growling, “Not today, Satan”.
I mean, the fireworks came but someone forgot to bring the matches.
Of course, there are things to be thankful for; friends who stick closer than brothers, work that pays above average, strangers who have faith in you , challenges that don’t break you.
But right now, as of this moment, this is not the 2016 I ordered. We’re only halfway through and 2016 is already looking so broken, we’re considering dipping the world in rice.
Ashiwel
Still, we move.

When We Kissed

Our kisses were this ever evolving mystery we were constantly trying to solve.

Earlier today, our kisses were perfunctory. A ritual we had to partake in to keep the appearances of an us up. The activity we engaged in to see if we could stoke the embers and bring a dying flame back to life. We nursed our hopes, individually, of what we would do if our little rose bush would spring back to life and bloom again.

Yesterday, they were slow and deliberate as we reveled in the sensations we were feeling. We explored lengths and depths, textures and varying degrees of pressure. Together. We brought our separate experiences to the table and created a unique feast no one but the both of us could dine upon.

Before that, they were furtive and passionate as we rushed unto this adrenaline inducing roller-coaster ride that drove us at insane speeds through waterfalls and over volcanoes, plied through boulders of ice and leapt over chasms, before depositing us, one heap of breathlessness, at the highest peak it would take ages to climb down from.

At the beginning, they were barely existent. Who cared for appetizers when they could go straight to the main course and still get dessert? Who dwells on first base when they can get to third base easy? Who uses training wheels when they can do a wheelie? Who rides the bus when… Well, you get the idea.

Before you and I were an us, many nights I would stare at your photos on Instagram and imagine what tasting those lips would be like. Were you a good kisser? Did you know how to use your tongue? Did you know what fun could be had when you playfully introduced your teeth? Would you like it if I tugged on your lower lip? Would you do that annoyingly adorable thing were you blew into my mouth when I least expected it? So many questions I could never have guessed the answers to just staring at your photos or reading your tweets.

Now we don’t ever kiss.

And we may never kiss again.

Dark 30: Dami

Is it too late to say happy new year? Nah, I don’t think so. So happy new year everyone.

First of all, thank you Olatokunbo for inviting me to feature here, I feel so honoured.
2016, wow!!! I entered the year with a broken leg, on a hospital bed, with mixed feelings of thankfulness , morose, down-in-the-dumpness and a tinge of joy.
Over the past few years, I just found myself slipping from God and evolving into this fearful, faithless, person that lacked the inner joy of truly connecting with the Living God.
But 2016 is going to be different. I’m going to take a lesson from this broken leg and lean on God, depend on Him fully. It’s not going to be easy but there’s going to be an improvement in my relationship with The Lord. To pray without ceasing or fainting, to fast, grow my faith, increase in love and to read my bible. the devil has taken so much advantage of me, it ended with last year. Jesus girl loading…. Hallelujah sombarry?
I’ve been wanting to lose some weight and get fit, and even as I ponder, the dark voice tells me that I can’t, what if I break my leg again or injure something? But after my doctors give me the go ahead, I’m going to lose a lot of this weight.
I hope to pick up my guitar again and strum some.
I’m going to finish housejob and serve my country this year.
I’m going to learn how to make amala, use my oven to grill stuff like chicken, meat, fish. I’m going to be more experimental in the kitchen department.
This year, my eyebrow and gele game are going to be on point.
I’m going to be involved in church a lot, join a department or 2, be faithful, be involved.
I hope to resurrect my blog. Loll, I can already see Rolayo rolling her eyes, but I mean it.
I also hope to be more generous while learning to rely on God for everything I need, desire and want.
I’m going to hang out with my husband more often, I’ve discovered that he’s more involved in my life than I am in his.
I am going to overcome my fear and learn how to suture tissue, viscera, vessels and skin properly, I personally don’t know how a doctor can be scared of sewing people up. I’m also going to learn how to secure any iyalaya IV line with boldness.
I’m going to save N366000 this year.
I’m going to have more fun this year and keep my friends really close this year.
Yeah, one more thing, I’m going to sew all my asoebis from years back this year.
2016 is my year of walking on water, overcoming my fears, being bold and being an ambassador for Christ by God’s grace.
Here’s to 2016, I’m going to walk, run, leap and soar in Jesus name and all steps will be ordered by The Lord.
Peace, love and joy everyone.

______________________________

I read Dami’s 2015 review and was in awe as to how positive minded she was in spite of a recently broken leg.

Awful glad she’s flying that spirit into 2016. I have no doubts that you shall soar, Dami.

Dusk 22: Oluwadamilola

The Bible says; “hope deferred makes the heart sick.” It’s funny how the Bible is always right. I did not have many dreams when I started 2015; I did not write down or discuss resolutions. In fact, I believe I went into 2015 with the idea that ‘what will be will be’, and so it went. By the time I was half way through 2015, I was in despair and I was yearning for my purpose. I was asking God to awaken me to the point of my entire human existence. I was living with a tremendous amount of fear and trepidation, many things were changing and I felt I was lagging behind. I did not want to live just for the sake of living; I wanted my life and story to have a point. I was asking God not to show me the destination, but instead, to give me the direction and the path I needed to follow. In 2015, I felt lost. 

It was in that melancholy that I started writing again, and started reading again with the voracity I once had. In 2015, I birthed my blog, looking back today, I realise that I actually fulfilled so many dreams in 2015. A Yoruba proverb says; “Bi omode ba dupe ore ana, a ri omiran gba” (when a child shows gratitude for a benefit, he will receive another).  So I put my misery aside and ended 2015 with a grateful heart, as I made a list of all the things to be thankful for in the year gone by. I deferred all other hope into 2016.

Hope for God. There is a vast hole in my heart that only God can fill. I think He put it there, to remind me that He is and has always been the source of my joy. I don’t want to feel far from Him this year. I want to stay as close to His heart as possible.

Hope for friendships. In 2015, I met many people, but in 2016, I want to build real friendships. I realised as 2015 ended that there is a significant amount of superficiality in many friendships, I yearn for a symbiotic relationship built on Christ, love and respect.

Hope for love. In 2015, I learnt that my fear of love was always incorrect. I had often assumed that I’ll never fall, but I realised that was the wrong thing to fear. In 2016, I desire to listen speedily when God says ‘No’ and when He says ‘wait’. I do not want to question the signs I asked Him to show me. I have been obedient on this issue, but I want to obey with immediate alacrity in the future.

Hope for tears. In 2015, I seemed to cry a lot. I seemed to be weary a lot. I desire for that to change. I want to have more tears of joy than of misery in 2016. I hope to focus on the beauty that surrounds me than the storms that overshadow me.

Hope for motherhood. My mother is a great woman, she is always right and has been a mother to so many. In 2016, I want to cherish her more. I thank God for my mum. Today is her birthday; please celebrate her.

When I asked Olatoxic for a chance to write in this year’s #30daysofHope, I had no idea what I wanted to write about. So I chose my mother’s birthday and wished for the best. As I struggled to write, I remembered this poem by Emily Dickinson that describes the meaning of hope;

“Hope is the thing with feathers

That perches in the soul,

And sings the tune without the words,

And never stops at all,”

So I cover 2016 in the Blood of Jesus and declare it to be a year of God, hope and realisation of dreams. I pray that God will awaken you to your purpose and enable you to walk toward your destiny, I pray that you will shed only tears of joy in 2016.

Happy New Year!