who am i?

"I write for the unlearned about things in which I am unlearned myself." - CS Lewis, Reflections on the Psalms

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013... It's A Wrap!!!!

I’ve received gifts this year that have been unbelievable and amazing from an uncle of mine. God used him to make part of my year great. I was excitedly expecting the traditional Christmas package from him. Every year, I get a nice package, and this year, I planned a lot of things around this package. Well Christmas has come and gone and that special Christmas package still hasn’t arrived. I was high on being pissed. I wasn’t happy, I was sulking… I complained and I murmured, even though I joked about this unusual amnesia. Then I picked up my phone and came upon pictures of me smiling and having a good time at different times this year and it hit me, if he doesn’t do anything else for me, he’s done enough. Without me asking, he’s added to the beauty of my year by letting God use him to meet my wants.

Lack of gratitude and probably greed blinds us from seeing the good we’ve been laden with. We have a person doing good to us 364 days in a year, and the one day he takes a day off, we judge and condemn and throw all the other days out with the trash. I quickly repented of my rants, as much as I still feel a package would have done me real good, I’m no longer passively mad at him for that. I’m thankful. God forbid that he realizes how hurt I was for this one omission… what would he think of me?

It’s the last day of the year… my last post was about being thankful, and I want to end the year with another post on gratitude... Look back and see the goodness of God in your life. You may not have gotten that special request, but can you honestly turn back and smile at some events? Its all His grace and His goodness, be thankful to Him, don’t throw all He’s done out just because he hasn’t come through on one of your request…

Remember this song...
Count your blessings name them one by one, count your blessings see what God has done… count your blessings, name them one by one, and it will surprise you what the Lord has done.”

I am grateful, and I repent of every ingratitude, I repent of every grumbling and murmuring and doubt…. I trust God and I believe in His goodness. As bad as it may seem, people have looked at me and envied me this year… that’s enough reason to be thankful. I mean all the good and bad has merged into a big beautiful picture, the bad and the moments of despair has been covered up and I have been envied, people have wished to be me… even as I struggled through some challenges. The fact that no one can perceive my challenges is a blessing on it’s own. The fact that I look like I have not a problem in the world is grace! The joy of the Lord has indeed strengthened me this year. How awesome is that. I end this year with a big thankful bang. God is awesome.

Thank you for being a part of my 2013. For every time you’ve clicked on Eldorado, you’ve encouraged me to keep doing this, you’ve made me see it’s all worth it. Brace yourself for greater things in the coming year… See you in 2014!!!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas...

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
John 3:16

Merry Christmas!!!!
Thank God for the gift of Jesus. The reason for our celebration.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Ainya Owochio... Giving Thanks!

Sunday was my church’s end of year thanksgiving… I didn’t dance much, because I can’t dance…  It felt good dressing up for God and just showing Him how thankful I am… for my family, for my friends, for my dreams, for my hope, for my salvation, for faith, for His grace, for favor, for ease… for everything!!! (Yeah so I'm kind of showing off in pictures *shrug*)

It’s the end of the year again… how time flies, what a whirlwind… what a year! Many lost loved ones. I watched my friends go through the pain of losing a brother. Maybe you lost parents and friends. Life flung you and left them hanging from it’s fringes like a door hanging loose on a stormy night.

I’ve watched people question God, I’ve watched them serve Him in their pain even as they question Him in their hearts. Oh, I would say the year was tough for many… And then I bring the foolishness of what my Christian faith teaches, that God is good! That this year was good despite all you went through… that’s the foolishness of the gospel, telling you your path shines brighter even when you feel it’s been dimmed out and half way to quenching from all the pain of lose and how the reality of your dreams has eluded you. Forget the seen and dwell on the unseen, it is well with you (sounds like unrealistic religious talk right?).

Through your pain, through your gain, it’s always been well. I know its foolishness, I know I don’t feel the pain you feel… I know you hurt and you’re mad at God. I know the tears hurt; your heart feels like it’s been wrenched out. I know… but in all my knowing, I know one truth that stands, God is good ALL the time. I don’t know how or why I can say that, or why my bible tells me that and my heart convicts me of His goodness, I really don’t know, I only know that He is truth and if He says He is good, then trust Him to be good.

There’s nothing to be thankful for? You’re alive! You say, I’d rather be dead than go through this pain and failure… Solomon says a live dog is better than a dead lion (Ecc 9:4). There’s a reason He’s given you His shoulder to lean on in your mourning, there’s a reason He refused the heartbreak to kill you… there’s a reason you haven’t ended your life like your mind convinced you to… there’s a reason, I don’t know what it is, but there is. Be thankful, if for nothing, then for the fact that He is God in all situations.
Be thankful for the sacrifice of Jesus that qualifies you to be seen as Gods beloved. Ainya Owochio... means Thank you God in Idoma. Just take a minute to say thank you.

My year has been wonderful so far, and I know more is to come. Grace abounds… I learned more about the goodness of God, I learned more about His grace, I learned more about the truth of the gospel… I grew!!! Oh I grew… I saw the love of God, I walked in favor and entered into a phase of grace and ease. It was a perfect year… it’s been a perfect year so far…. Does it mean I didn’t encounter challenges? Does it mean I didn't cry? Of course I did(Matter of fact, I was so hurt I cried hard a few days ago) 
All my dreams haven’t come through and I haven’t achieved some things I hoped to, but that’s not what determines it… my heart is full… I don’t feel any hesitation in saying it’s been a perfect year, better than last and nothing near what the next will be. How am I sure? The path of the righteous shines brighter and brighter to the perfect day (Prov 4:18)… It can only get better, it’s only getting better, even when it looks worse. There's always a reason to be thankful. Ainya Owochio!

Keep trusting, keep hoping… don’t be weary in doing so, just at the right time, you’ll reap your harvest. There’s still days left to the year to achieve, there’s still time for a ‘suddenly’ kind of touch from God, and even if there isn’t, there’s still next year…. Don’t limit God to a year, who says If He didn’t do it this year He can’t or wouldn’t do it in the next year? Keep trusting!

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Chairman's Daughter...

The factory workers were going against the authority of the chairman. They went against rules, did things wrong and neglected duties. It was only right for the chairman to close down the factory, cut off their only source of livelihood in a time of such economic crisis as this… the fact that she had been silent about their ways made them think they could get away with it. Her warnings/appeals were heeded, and then discarded as soon as the solemnity of the moment wore off. The production manager was practically useless, as he seemed to fear the people more. The factory was loosing money, and loosing credibility with the sloppy work and late delivery of goods.
That’s when the chairman’s favorite child and only daughter came in. She decided to forfeit the luxury of her title and her qualification to become a factory worker. To learn the ropes and hopefully stir some passion for the work in the staff, make them realize that just a tiny cord held them and their job security together.
She dropped the Jimmy Choos for factory boots, silk scarf’s and fascinators for hard hats, well manicured nails for rough gloves… soft clean hands became hard and brittle, Gucci shades for safety goggles, channel no 5 for the smell of sweat. The face that was well powdered became sweaty and rough with acne. Well-fitted clothes from the couture houses were set aside for unflattering and stained jumpsuits for one of her stature. Luxury accommodation was exchanged for a room in the staff quarters. Her income dropped. Lunchtime in posh restaurants was exchanged for lunch with the factory workers. She looked less than the numerous house helps that served her at home.
Many times, she wanted to quit, to give it all up, to tell mother to do what she wanted to do, it wasn’t worth it. But the more she stayed with this people, the more she loved them and wanted them to succeed, to be better even as they frustrated her. She tried boosting their commitment level, reminding them that they were better taken care of than their peers in other factories.  Only very few recognized who she was and respected her for the choice she made, respected her enough to renew their commitment to work. The others just didn’t care. They mocked her, told her she knew nothing. Even in her presence, they still went against authority. She tried making them see just how hurt the chairman was, but they called her bluff. She tried to make them understand that just a little commitment from them was all it would take for the Chairman to increase their benefit and her confidence in them… They told her to shush up. It wasn’t such an easy task after all.  
All hell finally broke loose. The day a major contract was handed to the company. A job, that would mar or make the company’s reputation for years to come. Negligence happened to visit in a big way this period. There was a mix up, an avoidable one. One that stalled production, one that put the company’s reputation on the line… one that broke the camels back of the chairman. She was closing shop, this people she had loved and kept working for her for two generations had taken her for granted long enough… she would replace them with new and worthy hands, people with no sentimental attachment but with an eagerness to work and earn a living…. She would close shop.
There was fear and trembling in the factory when word got round. Everyone was gloomy and sat in fear at the realization that indeed they had taken the chairman’s attachment and love for them for granted, they had taken advantage of the privileges and opportunities and chances she kept giving them, just because most of them inherited the job from their parents and grand parents. News coming in was that she meant business this time.
That’s when the chairman’s daughter walked towards the administrative block. Her heart beat with each step. She knew just how disappointed her mother was, she knew just how much this meant to the company, she knew what was at stake here…. But she knew she couldn’t let the silly people be punished for their foolishness. She knew she had to make a way for them to make it right again. Thus she stepped into the chairman’s office… and took blame for the mistake that almost cost her the company. She took the scorn and the disappointment, she took the mouth lash and the disgusted look, in that moment, she wasn’t a daughter, but a mere factory worker, an employee who had failed her employer. She took it all in pain because she loved her mother, and her mother had never spoken so harshly to her… but she took it, because she loved those silly people in the factory, the thought of the nothingness they would get with loosing their jobs kept her standing before the chairman and the board as words of disappointment were thrown at her. She took her termination letter with deep sorrow, she had always excelled in everything she did, to be given the boot over this was a hard one to swallow… But a feeling of relieve swept over her that she had saved families from unknown hardship.
She folded up her factory clothes, hugged those who understood what she had just done for them and thanked her profusely… and went away. As she took a bus home, she smiled. From tonight, she would be the chairman’s daughter again, she would be driven in her sleek car again, she would go to the spa and get a massage, facials and a full body scrub, She would be a sophisticated woman again, her hair would be made, and her nails will be pretty again. She would attend the events and be back to her social circle.
At least now she understood the workings of the factory, she would be able to advice on what needs to be done to the board, when she sits on the board, she would influence decisions and better the condition of the workers, little things that had been overlooked. She would know how to appeal to the chairman on behalf of the workers having been one of them for a period.
Hopefully, her sacrifice had beat common sense back into the lives of the factory workers. Hopefully. And so she was driven to the factory in her new car, and every air of sophistication, but with a love so great that she rushed into the factory in joy to see the people she took the heat for… Alas, the same attitude she took the burn for was still been played out, only a few worked, while the rest gambled, neglecting their machines and ruining the products.
What a stubborn people!
Our salvation story is quite similar to that of the factory. God was ready to let it all go, He’s said He’ll raise the stones to praise Him if we don’t, but Jesus stepped in. He left the glory of heaven, the attention of angels and became man, just for us. He’s walked amongst us, took the punishment for our sins by dying for us, only to peep back and see us act like He never did anything for us.
Thinking of Jesus leaving all that glory for us is overwhelming. I haven’t seen half of heavens glory, and the little that I have tasted is so hard to leave, to do nothing close to what God came to do.
“Though he was God,
he did not think of equality with God
as something to cling to.
Instead, he gave up his divine privileges;
he took the humble position of a slave
and was born as a human being.
When he appeared in human form,
he humbled himself in obedience to God
and died a criminal’s death on a cross…’ Phil 2:6-8
Only love could have done this… I’m thankful for the love of God that keeps loving me even when I act like a spoilt child. The love that stands even when I’m ungrateful and rebellious. I’m thankful for the sacrifice of the cross that speaks better things for me… I’m thankful for the lamb that was slain. I’m so thankful for Jesus.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

When Giants Fall.... Paul Franklin Crouch

Paul Crouch Sr. (March 30, 1934 – November 30, 2013) (photo TBN)

I’m thankful for the life of Paul Crouch. I’m thankful he yielded himself to God. I’m thankful he answered his call and pursued the vision God put in his heart… I’m thankful for TBN, for the random times I tuned in and discovered wonderful preachers from all around the world, with timely messages for me. I’m thankful for the message of salvation it sends across the nations. I’m thankful for the lives that have been transformed through him.

He was such a blessing and remains a blessing even in death. I’m not as sad as I should be, I can't even imagine a pinch of the joy he feels where he is right now, the place we all call home and long to be someday.
God bless and comfort his family.

 I heard a voice out of Heaven, “Write this: Blessed are those who die in the Master from now on; how blessed to die that way!”
“Yes,” says the Spirit, “and blessed rest from their hard, hard work. None of what they’ve done is wasted; God blesses them for it all in the end.” Revelations 14:13(msg)

I pray to have a legacy to leave behind, something that keeps blessing people even after I am long gone.

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