Archive for January, 2008

January 31, 2008

These are a few of my favourite things…

Send in your own favourite things. This is definitely not limited to pictures
alone. Send in anything which makes you feel good; pictures, books, music, sites … Anything!
From time to time I’ll post some more of mine.
January 31, 2008

Dealing with Fear

“The wise man in the storm prays God, not for safety from danger, but from deliverance from fear”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

No matter how serene and unaffected a person may seem, there isn’t anyone who is totally impervious to fear; everyone gets afraid sometimes. It is therefore not what you feel (fear) but what you do with what you feel. I’ll get to that in a moment.

For many years, I suffered from the debilitating effects of fear. It ruled my life so thoroughly I could not see anything else. Because of this emotion,

  • I could not realize my full potential
  • It stole from me; my joy, my dreams, so many things I did not even know about
  • I lost the friends I could have had. Because I did not want to get rejected, I did not give myself the chance to be accepted.

Countless books and theories abound by the so-called experts on how to deal with fear. I tried them all; self affirmation, mind control et cetera. The question is, do they actually work? Well, maybe they do. For a couple of days. Then the fear breaks through the banks of the mind and floods the soul. Again.

In dealing with fear I discovered certain things:

  • That there was One who is greater than my greatest fear
  • That I could get in touch with Him and He was willing to help me.
    Of course I already had a relationship with Him, which began when I accepted Jesus Christ as Lord over my life.
  • I got into the habit of literally giving him my fears.
    I spoke what I was afraid of into my palms, clutched them tight and told God about it, gradually releasing them and my fist to Him. It helped
  • Then I got to know what the Bible said about fear and kept repeating it to myself.

– cut out a cardboard sheet to the size of playing cards
– Write down on Bible verse on fear or being afraid on each card. You can do a keyword search on Christianity.Com or Bible.Com
– Read one card everyday. Take it everywhere with you and constantly pull it out to remind yourself.

One thing you do need to remember is that God keeps His promises. If he said He will free you from all your fears, then he most certainly will. You have to have faith though.

Note: He did not say you will never have fears; they just will not have the power to paralyze you anymore.

January 23, 2008

finding the right words

Its now one week (almost) since my last post. Its not that I did not want to post anything or that I did not have just what to post, no. I was searching for just the right words to write. See, this is supposed to be a blog about helping people, so i wanted to make sure I did indeed help. What I failed to realise is that there are no right words. I do not have to struggle to make sense. It is left for the Holy Spirit to choose my words for me and bless all those who read this.
Anyway, I just resumed work from the holidays this week and it has taken me a while to shake off the vacation lethargy and get back to work. In fact, after three full days at work I am just finally waking up. I guess that is why most of what I’ve read in the Bible this week has been about work.
This morning, I read that I should not be lazy but should work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically (Romans 12:11 NLT). It jumped out at me particularly because throughout this week, I’ve had this verse in the Bible that says whatever my hands find to do, I should do it with all my heart as though it were for the Lord. I kept wondering. I’ve never had a problem with laziness. Well, not really.
But I have learnt a lot about work this week. It is not about whether I feel like working or not; if I have work, I’ve got to do it! And more than that, I appreciate that God cares enough to speak to me.
It is easy to know with the head that God cares, but what does the heart say? I suppose this is also like work in a way; it does not really matter if my heart feels that God cares or if it does not. He still cares anyway and He is bigger than what I think. If he took the time out to create a little insect and still takes the time out to make sure they get fed…?
January 16, 2008

Digging Out the Pain

Yesterday I watched this film about a girl who became an unrepentant prostitute. She was a prostitute or “ashawo” as we call it here in Nigeria but was resolutely unapologetic. This particular young man took interest in her and tried to get her to turn form her ways but his appeal made no difference to her.

As I watched I tried to discern the rationale behind her chosen profession. It obviously was not solely for the money; she was young and had no aversion to hard work. So what could have caused it. What bothered me most was not even the fact that she was indiscriminate about who she had sex with, once she got paid. What really disturbed me was this hardness about her. She did not want to hear about God or a better way of life. She did not want to hear anything at all. When the gospel is preached, there are a myriad reactions. Not everyone is receptive, but at least they react; even if it is to laugh in disdain. She was completely indifferent.

Later on, as the film progressed, i discovered that she had been continuously raped and abused by her father who was a pastor! How was anybody going to convince her that there was a good God out there who cared about her? All of a sudden, her antipathy and hardness of heart made sense. She had suffered so many hurts that to arm herself against further hurts she made herself stop feeling. She had buried the pain so deep, she could not feel it anymore. In order to begin to feel once more, she had to dig up those hurts and examine them. Give them a chance to heal.

A lot of us have gone through one experience or the other that have left scars. we have pains we have buried deep inside that we cannot even remember they exist anymore. But the subconscious remembers and that is why we act the way we do.

broken heart

We all want to love and be loved, to live a normal and well balanced life. But somehow we find that we are never able to get there. The mind can be funny like that. If there are hurts that have refused to heal, or pains buried deep down, they block the way for the spring of love to well up. It could be anything: childhood abuse; rape; a broken home; a broken marriage; you name it, if we have not allowed LOVE to heal them then it will be impossible to experience love.

Psychologists and Shrinks have said to look deep inside self for the strength to go on. Well, what happens when we dig into the reservoirs of self and come back empty? The Lord Jesus says “Come unto me all you who labour…and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28 NKJV). The hurt might be decades old and it might seem like its too far gone to heal. But He made us, surely he knows how to fix us. Until that pain is dug out, the love certainly can’t spring out.

Read the article Cure for a Broken Heart by Wilma Watson to get practical steps on letting God heal the hurts.