What would the world be like without women? I wonder. Lacking lustre without a doubt, on these I will not ponder. Say not that I praise her because I am one… But then you may not be far from the truth dearest one Known for her ability to multiply seeds and bring ease The world stands to benefit from her and find peace Little wonder the Proverbs 31 woman may sound like myth Yet a simply search and you find her in every midst We’ve heard it said, “why so many days celebrating women?” Deep down they realise what bore it would be with just men! Don’t think for a second we would have it otherwise…no way! With the men around we roll on all sides and sway!
Celebrating women everywhere and the men who are not afraid to have us in their space. It is not a man’s world, it is not a woman’s world.
If no year has taught us anything, 2020 took us to school and had a spreadsheet of lessons to train us in various ways of living and survival, and live, we did! Sadly, as with all things human, once a phase is passed, we forget the lessons it brought and carry on as usual. But, some of us didn’t!
One phrase or thread you are likely to hear or see in my articles is, “Family is everything!” Another is, “I love Love!” By family, I refuse to limit the definition to those bond to us by blood, but expand it to include relationships that transcend blood and birth to bond via connection and friendship! Everyone should have one or more communities they are connected and committed to, not just for the help the community gives, but for the platform it provides us all to serve and help humanity.
Do you have a community?! Do you have a common union you can fall back on?
Our friend and brother passed on recently in another country far from his nuclear family. It was the community he had joined who reached out to his immediate family to inform them, whilst making plans to ensure his transition was almost stress-free to his immediate family. This is the GOSPEL of Jesus, having communities that propagate what Kingdom lifestyle is all about and living it. Don’t go thinking NGOs and don’t get me wrong, NGOs are good, but before you begin thinking of establishing one, branding it, getting a building and all the nitty gritty of having the papers to run one, we can all have pockets of communities where people can reach out to and find help, support and care. In some faith-based organisations, they are called fellowships, family units, home-cells, house fellowships, these should not only be about spreading the Word or doctrines we believe in, but true care for members.
I’ve been a member of one for a while and though it’s been ages I physically attended a meeting, yet we are constantly in the know about the well-being and welfare of our members. It is not always easy to assist, however, the few times we have stood our grounds and helped, we have had success stories. Beyond these fellowships, I have a group of ladies that we connect and share posts that help with life and sound mental living, we plan on hanging out which has not happened yet (because of our busy lives), but that is one hub we are ourselves, we laugh, cry and pray! Your family can also be a community, but you need to have a common focus and a foundation and no foundation can be best than having the Rock in place, so regardless of the storms and weather that life brings your way, you are still standing.
Being Christ-like is beyond speech and eloquence, it is deeds that show the characteristics of Christ. If we truly walk our talk, then will be fulfilled in our days, “Thy will be done on earth, as is in Heaven” and when there is a ready ground, it is so easy to plant seeds, water and the increase which God gives to come. We need to be the body of Christ in truth. How are you spreading the tents of this gathering, it is greater than the already established unions of the world. It is one (or more, as many as you love to build) which common ideals, faith, beliefs, goals are established and pushed for greater good. Mark those words, “GREATER GOOD”… if we decide to stand together in love and truth, no person or group of persons can overturn decisions we make. Interestingly, we have higher power as supernatural beings, let’s put it to work, your faith has been at ease for too long, work-mode activated!
The message is becoming increasingly clear and it’s no gainsaying, we need to grow our communities and strengthen the bonds of friends and family. Only then can we truly show our love for God by showing up for one another. The Community starts with you, your friends/neighbour, check up on one another, create a hub to log in a “hiya” every morning or evening or an emoji that says how you feel. I just checked up on mine…have you done yours?
You’ve moved on like ‘centuries’ ago making moments lose its’ glow… Yet, I still see and reminisce your moves and several instances where your words lighted and remained your deeds impacted and sustained, leaving behind reminders that reek of you!
There should be a point I let go and allow the currents to flow taking with it bits and pieces past so the new will find ground to breed fast, creating new experiences with a tinge of old? Nah! I’d rather grow learning, than put my life on a hold. Leaving behind reminders that reek of you!
It is what it is, Be silent in there please! It is what it is You’ve lost your ability to tease It is what it is With the past, I’ve made my peace.
Excuses according to my Pastor, “are the tools of the incompetent, monuments of nothingness, those who use them are not wise.” The question that begs for answer is, why do people enjoy giving excuses?
Agreed, there are valid reasons why people do not keep their promises to perform or deliver; these sets of people we can overlook. However, there are those that DELIGHT in giving excuses. As a matter of fact, they have readymade answers waiting for every question or enquiry. For me, I view them as a form of escape. It says ‘I can’t think through beyond what I’ve done, there’s no other way round this! This alone portrays you as ‘unserious’, ‘unreliable’, ‘undependable’ and all the other negative ‘uns’.
There are always options, search them out and if it will help, utilize them.
Escaping from Excuses:
1)View the task before you as a personal challenge you MUST succeed in
2)Look for fun ways to achieve your goal so it doesn’t weary or bore you out.
3)Ask someone else for their assistance, they might just know how to make it work.
Having done all, realize that there are some situations you can’t do anything about and just let it be. That way you roll with a conqueror’s mentality and not a defeatist cloak. This is my opinion, what do you think about excuses?
We are beleaguered with all manner of leaders, some with good plans, some with selfish motivated schemes and some with desire to lead but are surrounded by sycophants. Leaders in the marketplace, governance, systems (everywhere). Well, what can one say and really do when you have become the cockroach surrounded by hungry chickens? Hmmmm.
Not much, but that little can make a whole lot of difference. That is choosing to not go the way of bad leaders, serving the people with the barely-there or scare resources that we have. Educating people on how to rise from the ash and do something with their gifts, talents and skill-sets other than wait to be spoon-fed.
I’m done waiting for someone who doesn’t know the way to attempt to lead me. I am a forward-thinking person, I know what is right and wrong and when I’m not sure, as a believer I know Who to fall back on or ask questions. There are pointers and other good examples to follow by the way. I’ll do right by inspiring others, how about you?
When last did you read a good book and implement the simple strategies ‘hidden’ therein?
At what point did you stop believing in yourself and the gifts in you?
Why does negativity enjoy most evenings with you and invites his friends over too?
What are you going to do about changing what needs to be changed?
When I was a child, Innocence used to live in my community
Yes, they were bullies, but also mothers that stood up to resist
And fathers that sent you back to school to return with a trophy
There were mothers who could leave their children for the market
And return to meet them alive and in one piece.
Fathers who taught boys how to be men and not celebrate the beast in them
Fathers who knew to be proud of their legacy, wealthy or not!
Back then, it felt good to be a child, as my short baby dress wasn’t an invitation
But a girl beautifully dressed with ribbons and matching socks…
Trusting fingers clinging to out-stretched adult hands
Giggling as my feet left the ground; above an uncle’s shoulder…
When Innocence was a child like me!
Now Innocence is grown in more ways than she should
The quick movement of retreating eyes tell sordid tales
Of several forms of abuse, unspoken and unreached hurts
Innocence wears a gown not her size, trying desperately to hide
Yet searching ‘Hawks’ snatch her fresh before Momma turns to defend
Making a woman of her, laden with a child. Yet, she herself is one!
I don’t know if Innocence will return…
But I seek all who will her cause defend and Hawks prevent
Will you join me? So we truly have a Happy Children’s day.
*Both male and female gender suffer different forms of abuse and need to be cared for, defended, loved and made to enjoy their innocence. Let’s be the voice of the new-born, 3-month baby who can’t form words yet or the one whose truth is disbelieved.
**We still have parents that believe in family values and uphold them at every given opportunity.
Whenever I’m to go for an event and the ‘stress’ is much, I usually would still go because that tells me there’s something I need to learn there and I’m about to miss out on it. That was the scenario I found myself in before deciding to go for the Connect Nigeria 3rd Writers Conference, tagged “The Business Of Writing” on the Saturday, 21st May 2016, which was my first!
Like I said, I got in quite late with 2 hours left to go and I’m wondering “why did I burn N145 per litre of PMS and a family time-out to get there?”, but I didn’t regret it a bit. I’m still excited and motivated and on a whole new dimension. When it comes to my articles, I’m so looking forward to the next conference. I guess you won’t understand it until I share what is making me gush even days after.
My time there started out with Efe Paul Azino, he is an interesting fellow. If I saw him on the road, I would readily call him a sculptor or painter (he had those hands and keen eyes) but he’s a poet! You see, I was discouraged before now about my poetry, by someone I shared the desire to publish them years back, as in his expert opinion (a doctor by the way) “Nigerians don’t read much, talk-less of poetry”. Listening to Mr Efe say things like
To be a really good poet, “your consumption = your production” READ! READ!! READ Everything!!!
When it comes to performing, if you like theatrics, go ahead and perform yours like that. If you prefer to read out the poem, by all means, do that. Just perform it the way you are.
For a wider audience, try writing poetry in other languages. I’m trying out my pidgin English skills on this one.
Find your voice! Be original, so whenever anyone reads your poem, they can tell it’s yours. I would refer to this as your USP!
Learn to withdraw amidst all your successes and recreate yourself.
Form or join other poetry groups.
…I’m ready to go beyond the stars with the poems.
Mr Onimisi Adaba spoke for 5 minutes on the importance of having audio books, as some of your audience might not be the hard-copy crowd. For an intelligent writer, it is expedient to meet the needs of your diverse crowd in a fast-paced world, “Don’t just do hard copies, bring your words to life with the requisite emotion and pronunciation, using audio books.”
I’m not sure I was expecting to gain much from Ike Nnaebue a renowned Nigerian Movie Director/Screenwriter, as I’m a poetry and prose person, but by the time he started speaking I was yearning for more and already seeing myself as a screenwriter or applying the elements to my poetry and prose. As Mr Ike gave the ELEMENTS necessary for a good Screenplay Writing and I sat awed.
The Art of storytelling = The Art of Seduction. Try to woo, lure, entrap, persuade and capture your audience to remain in that world you have created till you are done and ready to release them. I love this! Yummy, I tell you.
To be a good writer, continue to ask question, make your audience asks questions too! Do not answer their questions, until you have new questions for them.
Have a unique idea. Make your characters, hate-able or likeable to the point that you create an emotional bonding.
Make your tale unpredictable by creating unique dialogues. Step out of the norms. Try not to use the first idea that comes to your mind, keep writing, more and better ones will come.
Though you are to consider the budget of your market, low budget doesn’t mean mediocre. Let your creative juices flow!
For Okechukwu Ofili, a self-published author and a non-conformist, Self-publishing is the way out. He expounded on his 10 Rules of writing. I love those rules and even when we refer to him as a non-conformist, all he said is a re-enactment of what others said. Be unique, everyone has got the same number of alphabets to work with, be interested in the writing as well as the sales amongst others.
It was a time well-spent seated amongst people with like-minds and if you want more, check my tweets @imaniking . Connect Nigeria Writers Conference 2017, here I come with other writers!
People read books for different reasons…some just watch movies! I try to get into the mind of the writer and imagine what they wanted us to grasp. Sometimes I enjoy what I find, other times I’m scared and thrilled at the same time. On one of such readings, I have encountered quotes that mean more than just words and this is one of them.