You! Yes you and your story

I’m writing my story so that others might see fragments of themselves.” – Lena Waithe

Have you ever thought of sharing your life’s story? Well, I hope you did or you will from now on. Many thoughts are bombarding your mind now. I think my story is irrelevant, I think I will sound arrogant. I am not so rich. My life is not fun. Who would want to hear my struggles or successes or all the things that I experienced? People are going to know things about me. I do not like people to encroach in my private space. People are going to talk about me. The truth is you may be right. But that story is not yours and if you do not tell it you will die with it. There are a lot of people who would want not only to hear it, but you would help them. It is very important to the world. Every time a story is told, a life is changed.

You may be saying I have no story. Yes you do. If you have ever shared a story with one or two people then you have a story right there. If you survived into adulthood, then you have countless stories of perseverance, in the face of failure. You have loved and you have lost. You have harmed and you have been harmed. The problem is not that you don’t have enough stories, it is that you have too many.  – Jeremey Donovan

When you tell your story, you take the time to think things through again. You go through it all again and additionally, you look at them from another perspective because you want to share them with other people, which automatically changes the way you look at it. And this new perspective might open up a new learning from the situation. Sharing your story with others, is an amazingly powerful way of healing yourself. So get that story out. It could be the one blocking your progress. There will be no more energy block as you tell the story. You also open up the possibility to someone going through something you already have been through and offer them some guidance. By telling your story openly, owning it and showing the world where it brought you, will empower others who have been shying away from the subject to speak up too.

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The stories we tell on social media are most times wonderful stuff and pictures which only paint half the story. Our lives are made up of real stories. We may not choose some of the stories in our lives. That means some of them are really not nice.  However, the best stories in the world can only be told at a point of vulnerability. Look deep within you and see the story in you. You need to tell the world. Yes you will become vulnerable but share it. People will still talk about you anyway and the rumors they may be spreading may be wrong, worse than your story and not helpful to anybody. Tell your story otherwise you will keep it to yourself and one day you will die and you will be useless. As in your experiences were not useful to any body. Useless. And yes on your funeral, people will tell a story about you. A good story.  I am yet to hear a bad story about someone on their funeral. the problem is the detail of how you managed to be good is buried to you and it is the stuff that changes people. it is what is important.

When it comes to children, your stories will unfold a beautiful and personal expansion of their world because they find you important, intriguing and influential in their lives. They want to see through your eyes. As they get older, they will remember the stories and feel safe to share theirs.

The Bible shows that storytelling was Jesus’ favorite technique when speaking to the crowd: “Jesus spoke all these things to the crowd in parables; he did not say anything to them without using a parable.” (Matthew 13:34). But trust me almost every one knows Jesus’ story. It was not hidden.

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Half the Story

In the animated movie the Grinch, the Grinch’s childhood is explored and it is discovered that he was teased and bullied as a child, so he learned to hate people, or at least to see them with disdain. During pre-Christmas preparations, he gets fed up with the community’s obsession with decorations and presents and his memories of his youth flooding back. Everyone thought he was mean and rude but the truth is that they only knew half of his story.

A friend of mine called Allan https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/92719813/posts/2277423060 wrote a story about a lady called Jacinta he found in a taxi. She seemed to be so much in thought. A few minutes later the tax conductor saw a pregnant lady trying to cross the road and he said a joke so bad that that the passengers could not resist but laugh apart from Jacinta. She looked at him with a gaze that would make a toddler cry. She hurled rhetorical questions at the conductor and made statements that indicated her anger and disappointment in him. Everyone thought she was so serious and could not take a joke as a joke. Allan went ahead to find out that she was coming from a baby shower, she had not had children in six years and she had just lost a baby a few weeks ago. Those who judged her knew only half of her story.

There is a story of a farmer who had only one horse, and one day the horse ran away. The neighbors came to condole over his terrible loss. The farmer said, what makes you think it is so terrible? Three months later, the horse came back home bringing with her two beautiful wild horses. The neighbors became excited at the farmer’s good fortune. Such lovely strong horses. The farmer said, what makes you think this is good fortune? The farmer’s son was thrown from one of the wild horses and broke his leg. All the neighbors were very distressed. Such bad luck. The farmer said, what makes you think it is bad? The war came, and every able-bodied man was conscripted and sent into battle. Only the farmer’s son, because he had a broken leg, remained. The neighbors congratulated the farmer. What makes you think this is good; said the farmer.

The sun gets to see one face of the moon and we get to see the dimer reflection. If we and the sun were to tell a tale about the moon our story would be different yet we would both be right but we only know half of the story.

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“Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always.” ― Brad Meltzer

The moment we get half of the story, judgment happens before looking at the other side. This judgment can be damaging. We miss to learn from the victim and our words become barriers or walls between them and us. The only way to get to the right information is to make conversation. To dig deeper. Maybe if we looked closer we would see the all story. Challenge your judgment of people and make the human experience better. Move beyond what you see and have actual conversations. Get useful to the people. Think about the street children, ladies of the night, drug addicts, rude and selfish people. They all have a story you may not know. Many times we miss the mark. Look at a hooker and you will judge her as wasted. Well she is some ones daughter, sister, mother and friend. She probably is working hard to make ends meet and that is the only way she knows how. We just do not see the world in her eyes. As a human race, our role is to care for the well being of others.

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When the wife is treated like a queen, the children become princesses and princes – Kamara A.

When the children have bad habits probably it is the parents. What we do not know is equally important.

This blog is a call to change people’s stories. Instead of being judgmental, try to understand their story and then give them a fresh paper for them to write a brand new story. There are no bad people. We all have good and bad tendencies in us. We all have light and dark. While some people the light has made the dark to fade in their lives. Some people have no light at all. Reality is much more fluid. What we see as bad are incomplete stories. Our job is to set a fire and the darkness will hide. But we need to know where to set the fire. It is all in their story. Recently we visited  Rahab Uganda – a nonprofit organization with a mission to restore the self-image of girls affected by sexual exploitation and human trafficking. We found girls with brand new stories. There was a spark in their eyes as they told their stories.

In Luke 19 when Jesus told Zacchaeus to hurry and come down because He was to stay at his house. All who saw it began to complain, “He’s gone to lodge with a sinful man!”. Well all people knew half of his story. His bad story. Probably as they ate, Jesus got to know the other half of the story and Zacchaeus discovered that he had a good side too. It ended with Zacchaeus giving half of his possessions to the poor and paying back four times as much from those he had extorted anything. He had a good side to his story which only needed to be tapped into.

Go and change the world!

Do not eat alone

I cannot even butter my own bread if someone else can do it for me – Anonymous

Last year I bumped into a friend I had not seen for a long time and he was telling me how he had not been promoted for a long time. I asked him why because the position he wanted got advertised every year by people he worked with and they were the same people who conducted the interviews. He told me that people did like seeing others develop. Then he told me he would never teach a fresh graduate how to do his work otherwise he will remain with nothing to do. Actually he told me that he keeps the specialized work machine at his home so the fresh recruits do not even get to know that it exists and so if any work came up it would have to go through him. That explained to me why that position got advertised every year and I was not so shocked he had not been promoted for a long time.

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What is delegation?

According to Wikipedia, Delegation is the assignment of any authority to another person to carry out specific activities. Although it seems like one of the simplest things in the world to do it is one of the hardest to accomplish. The job of a leader is to see that all the work gets done – not to do it all themself.

“No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself or get all the credit for doing it.” –  Andrew Carnegie

You cannot do many things alone. A one man show will always stay small. Let me take an example of Pogba (it had to be Manchester United). Pogba is a star but he cannot play alone. He has a team of ten other players on the pitch. He needs them to help him play the game. Letting other people do part of the work does not come easy. Using the 80 – 20 rule, if they can do eighty percent of the task then let them do it. However watch out for it is not wise to delegate to people who are not responsible. I heard Moses Mukisa say that if you have a business and it cannot run when you are not around, probably it is not a business, you are self-employed. A business should have systems and should be able to run with or without you.

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Children love to help  when they are still young but most times the adults will not let them because either they will spoil something or hurt themselves. Truth be told sometimes house work can be too much but with some thoughtful delegation you can teach children responsibility and share the workload. All good reason the children should get on board from an early age, so they’re used to working before they become teenagers. It also makes them feel part of the family team and it helps them learn skills which will come in handy in their adult years.

Matthew 26: 17 Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying unto him, Where wilt thou that we prepare for thee to eat the passover?

18 And he said, Go into the city to such a man, and say unto him, The Master saith, My time is at hand; I will keep the passover at thy house with my disciples.

19 And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the passover.

Jesus had his disciples set up the place for the last supper. And before his ascension he entrusted to the twelve a job angels are not permitted to do – that of fulfilling the Great Commission. Matthew 28 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.

Psalm 8 says, “What is man that you are mindful of him…You made him ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet.” God entrusted his creation to man who is mistake-prone. If the God of the universe entrusted to us His creation, should we not be much quicker in empowering others to act?

What are the barriers to delegation?

  • “It is much easier just to do it yourself. Well that may be true but in the long term it will become a disadvantage as you grow older or as the workload expands unless you are planning to stay small.
  • Lack of confidence in other people to do the work to completion.
  • Then there is the fear of becoming irrelevant or other people taking credit for doing the work. It is a need to be needed.
  • The cost of maintaining the delegatees.
  • The fear of the delegatees learning the trade and starting their own business and thus not needing you. How much more selfish and evil can we get.

“Delegating means letting others become the experts and hence the best ” – Timothy Firnstahl

How do you delegate?

  1. Write down all the work you do
  2. Choose the best things on that list. The ones you are very good at like two or three.
  3. Focus on those few you like and get people to do the rest

FAT ELEPHANTS

Go and make disciples of all nations – Jesus

I have a very adventurous sister. One time she met a prophet who told her things in her life. She was so excited she came and told me to go and see him as well. Well I did not want to see him but just not to disappoint her I told her I would see him but deep down in my heart I knew I was not going to. Then she started following up on me.  I just knew I had to go and see the man. When I arrived he told me I did not have to tell him anything because he could see all my entire life. Then he started telling me things about my past which I refused to believe and in my mind I was thinking this guy must be hearing straight from god (don’t miss the small g). I asked  myself ” If I have been a Christian for so many years why am I the one still running around for special men of God to pray for me? These men can only do so much. They are so few. They need lots and lots of help. Probably that is why the world is going astray.

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Imagine a very fat child who consumes a lot of food and cannot walk but sits and eats more and more. That is what most Christians have become. The bible clearly states in Matthew 28: 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Jesus first states that He has all the authority so no questions like “who is He talking as?” Then He says GO (probably he shouted) go and make disciples of all nations. Now when Christians heard this they went and built a big church, got a man of God they believe in and started going there every Sunday and during the week to encourage each other, to pray for each other, to worship God together, to strengthen their relationships. These Christians are in there feeding as much as they can on conferences, retreats, worship sessions, the word of God, meeting with fellow Christians and discipling each other. They are the ones looking for men of God to pray for them. They think these men of God have no problems of their own if only they knew. They are the ones looking for better churches to pray from. They are the ones asking God for cars, marriages, wealth and all sorts of things without doing what He asked them to do. Now they have even opened Christian televisions and radios whose audience is Christians. The Christians are busy attending to themselves. Does all this remind you of the fat kid? Yeah right. These things are not bad but the world is not being reached in the process. The world is becoming worse every single day that passes. Thieves, liars, bad language, selfishness name it are increasing. And then it becomes a prayer request. Christians are praying against these things yet the solution is simple. Go and make disciples of all nations. Making disciples is not just mere converting people to Christ. It is modelling them in the ways of Christ as they watch you and it needs lots of time. A Christian disciple is a person who accepts and assists in the spreading of the Good News of Jesus Christ. Jesus made disciples by spending time observing potential disciples. He interacted with them in a variety of settings and situations. Discipleship naturally happened simply from a group of people hanging out and growing together. And don’t think discipleship happened over night. Jesus spent three years developing 12 men, 24 hours out of the day, seven days a week, 365 days out of the year. And only those twelve were able to spread the word by making more disciples and it reached us but we have kept it to ourselves and have killed the flow.

The children, we are busy at work making ends meet and the home managers are discipling them yet we have no idea who discipled them and the cycle will grow of probably bad habits.

Then we are watching romantic movies instead of going out and acting one ourselves. We are being discipled by actors who are just acting instead of discipling those who see us as examples.

And the readers I will just write a qoute. Knowledge is nothing without action. Nothing changes until you do something. What you do will directly determine what you learn – James A. Belasco.

Oh obess people. Go and make some disciples. Jesus made only 12 in three years. If all the Christians get on board and the disciples also start making disciples after three years, in like thirty years we will have the whole world. See it needs time. start now. Pull the thumb out of your mouth. You are some ones man of God. You have eaten too much.

I am a clown

I passed by my friends office Anet and we caught up from where we had stopped the last time then she asked me what was new in my life. I told her I am a clown now and she was in shock. she asked me what do clowns do. I told her I get to play with the children, sing, do magic tricks and shape toys for them from balloons. She asked in doubt do for me one magic tricks. so I made a coin disappear. Then she asked what other magic tricks can you do. I told her so many, I can change soda into water, papers into money to mention but a few. Then she told me she does not believe in magic that it is not christian. I told her they are just tricks. 61tKRYRMPoL._UX385_.jpg

I am a clown.

Q. Why did the clown go to the doctor.
A. He was feeling a little funny.

Eating alone!

Food is the ingredient that binds us together – Mesa de Vida.

Take a snap picture in your imagination of the place where you eat at your home and how it is. Is it a dining table or just chairs? Is it clean? Is it crowded with things? Is it located in the view of the television? Only you can tell however that table says a lot about you. The table is the Centre of the house and not the television. Most homes are set up in such a way that the television is part of the eating list. It has to be on when people are eating. I learnt this eating together from home. We used to eat all our meals together and we all knew the eating time and so we made sure we were home with in that time to eat as family. As the African saying goes “old habits die hard”, when I joined university, I used to like eating in the dining as opposed to taking the food to my room. This meant eating with strangers and starting conversations some of which were awkward.

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Take an experiment and go to a restaurant and observe someone eating alone. They pretend that there is something interesting on their phone and they start checking Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram which they already checked like a thousand times earlier during the day. There is nothing new there. Others will watch whatever is on the television. When you look at their faces they do not seem to be happy while enjoying their meal. The thing about eating alone is you start to feel like a looser. According to the daily mail, eating meals alone is the biggest cause of unhappiness after mental illness and financial problems. Eating alone is so associated with unhappiness because the best conversations happen while swallowing something. The food sellers know it that is why they have television sets on the walls. They have also come up with easy packaging so you can eat in the car or on the road. When you eat alone you tend to eat quick junk foods.

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Nothing brings people close like eating together. We are social creatures especially while eating. We are human, we all eat. It is a connection. It is very intimate. Simple food on the table going to be shared is a beauty. It is at the table where a house turns into a home, a stranger into a friend and a village into a community. While eating, people focus eye to eye, enjoy, drink and tell stories. The food feels the silence gaps so they are not awkward. Talking together while you clean your plate, you feel closer together.  There is connection, every one belongs and feels secure as they eat and talk.  When you eat together, you tend to eat healthier food and in the right proportions.

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Gathering your family around the table means that your focus is on one another. As a parent, this is a great opportunity to instill important character traits and spiritual truths in the lives of the children. I believe eating wholesome meals around the dinner table is an opportunity to grow and mold little hearts and souls. Children have a tendency to eat more of the good stuff and less of the bad (according to them) but if the same meal is being shared then their choices are limited. They learn to share. They also learn eating etiquette. They learn the art of conversation on the table where stories are shared. This is the best time to spend a little quality time together as a family. Good habits are learnt at the family table.  If the young ones do not see this they will not do it when they grow up.

Friendships, dating, marriage and eating move hand in hand. Eating together plays a vital role in binding them together hence it is better when the eating is done together. I have never seen a party without food. It sounds a boring one. Eating together is a given. It is the right thing to do. As you eat, switch off the television and make a habit of putting the phone down and talk as you clean your plates.

God designed us to live in community and I believe it was His idea that enjoying a meal together was a big part of having a healthy community. Perhaps the most famous meal in the Bible is the Last Supper. During that meal, Jesus impacted His disciples with many truths. From the importance of servant leadership to how to pray. Jesus taught so many important things to his disciples that evening.

 

Jealousy “the green monster”

Jealousy, that dragon which slays love under the pretence of keeping it alive – Havelock Ellis

One time at my office a new girl was recruited. Oh my God she was pretty. Later I discovered she was single and then I asked myself why, when, how, who, what, where, really? Then I was supposed to work closely with her. At one point I thought God was setting me up. Then I discovered she was so friendly to everyone. I was not liking it. One time our boss said he was not feeling well and she offered to go with him at his home and prepare for him a meal. Okay it was now official I was now seriously cuddling with jealousy.

Jealousy is a very tricky, subtle and hidden emotion which pops out from its hiding unnoticed because you think someone is better than you. It jumps out when you least expect it.  As much as you don’t want it, it just creeps out anyway, like a rattlesnake. It masquerades as criticism, anger, and hatred.

According to Wikipedia, Jealousy is an emotion; the term generally refers to the thoughts or feelings of insecurity, fear, concern, and envy over relative lack of possessions, status or something of great personal value, particularly in reference to a comparator. Jealousy often consists of one or more of emotions such as anger, resentment, inadequacy, helplessness or disgust.

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Where did it come from? According to Wikipedia, Jealousy is a typical experience in human relationships, and it has been observed in infants as young as five months. Probably we were all born with it. I like referring to it as the green monster. It is always flying above our heads. It is a very hungry monster. It likes feeding. What does it feed on? It feeds on information, details and photos especially from social media. The moment it feeds on a piece, it starts questing for more. Then you start telling yourself a story and in it you are comparing yourself with the person whose information you have got. Then you want more information and the monster is feeding. It is growing around your neck. Then it captures your imagination. You see a friend whose life is picture perfect. They have it all going on. The job, the looks, the partner and the lifestyle. So, when they suffer a failing or their world isn’t quite as perfect as you thought, you do feel a little bit pleased. Think of the last time you saw a friend do something amazing and felt a little jealous or even upset. Yeah, it’s great for so-and-so they deserved it. I’m really happy for them! Then you finish your statement with a but somewhere.

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He got a new job BUT that company people do not stay long.

He got married BUT his wife looks a little old.

He has got a big job BUT he does not know how to manage money and that company does not pay in time.

She is travelling out of the country BUT for me I would rather stay in my home country.

On UrbanDictionary.com, the top-rated definition for “but” is “to delay the inevitable “compliment sandwich” to deliver criticism–say something positive, then deliver the bad news.

When was the last time you were genuinely happy that your friend got a big scholarship. How could he get into the course he wanted when I can’t?

When you are jealous. You are feeling threatened. You have a self-belief. There is a way you see yourself and you are trying to protect it. You are unhappy with yourself. The reason you are bothered is value is being rewarded to another person and not you and you get threatened.

This bad habit comes naturally especially when someone has achieved something which someone does not have themselves. It somewhat gives them some confidence that they are at least better also. Some of your friends secretly want you to fail; not exactly though, they are just a little jealous. Some friends want you to stay the same so you can be at the same level. So they can feel comfortable with their own choices. With their own lives. So they can feel good about themselves. So they don’t have to challenge themselves.

We need to find peace within ourselves. How do we deal with it? Acknowledge it. Am getting jealous here. Ask yourself why. I will use a fiction story. Let me say you are a nice beautiful girl (guys no offense) and your handsome and attractive boyfriend let us call him John, is talking to Mary a brown rich girl. What is making you jealous? Maybe he is telling her nice words. She wants his money. What if they hook up? I am not good enough. I am black. I am not very beautiful. I am so unfriendly.

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Admit that you are getting jealous and stop it from growing. Then credit yourself. Have an identity. What are your life principles? Mine are honesty, integrity and attitude. Jealousy is not among them. It is below me. I am above it. Tell yourself what you are. Your good qualities. Also see the good in the other person who is starting to make you jealous. She is more beautiful, brown and richer. Control the story building in your mind. Stop the imaginary argument in your mind. Will jealousy make you happy really? Most probably not. Recognize that happiness is an inside job and do not attach it to John. If you are not happy without him you probably will not be happy with him. Think like, I hope she finds herself a good man. Stop seeing her as some girl who is going to steal your man. Force yourself to be positive. It is okay for other people to have good also. Know that John will get attention because he is attractive otherwise get yourself a less attractive dude. Then see John’s goodness. He is talking to Mary but is he is respectful, trustworthy and loyal. How is he handling the situation? Is it an awkward situation and is he trying to pull himself out of it or are they just friends having a normal casual conversation? Know that you are not John’s policewoman. Do you still want to be with him after observing how he has handled the situation?  How attractive is that? Feeling secure that John can talk to other people. The big control is do you still want to be with this person instead of controlling small stuff like them talking to other people some of whom are beautiful.

If your friend gets a great job great you now have some rich friends. They get a scholarship great better pay, better jobs and new friends to your circle. They get married, great at least you have a married matron or bestman. They get a brand new car, great you will get to ride in it. They get a new phone, great you will get to hear them better the next time you call. They build a new house, great next time you are in that area you will not pay lodging fees and they get to save on rent and could stop borrowing from you. joking!  That is the spirit. Starve the monster but note that it does not die.

John 14. 28 28 “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. Jesus is indirectly talking about jealousy. Why would the disciples be unhappy He is going to the Father? They had seen Him spend long hours talking to His Father which means Him and so going Him would be a good thing for Him. It is what He enjoys so instead of looking at themselves and seeing their new life without Him, they were supposed to look and see how happy He was going to be. If you stop thinking of only how you will benefit then you rejoice when other people are achieving. Song of Solomon 8:6. “Jealousy is cruel as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire.” Are you jealous of someone’s success or possessions?  Then, ask God for deeper trust.  He will help put out the fire. Matthew 11:28-29  Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.