Think-Thank Challenge, 2014


think thank

We keep making new resolutions to become better people, to be more successful, to break free from habits and addictions, to be better spouses, to keep our relationships from shipwreck, become healthier, slimmer or fatter…at the end of the year, its either we have succeeded or we continue in the vicious cycle of being the same old us with new calendars.

The year is almost over, we have probably ticked off some items on our resolution list. However, some items still remain far from fulfilment. But does this mean it was a bad year entirely? Perhaps you may have lost your loved ones, or job, or some money, or properties… does this really mean 2014 was the worst year ever? Definitely not!

In this think-thank challenge, I want you to think of the good that happened, the answers to prayers you never said, the good breaks you had, the helpers you didn’t even know, the money you found in your pocket when you were broke, the properties you didn’t lose, the new ones you acquired, the weight you gained or lost, the love you found, the partner who remained true even when you were at your lowest, the items you ticked off your resolution list and prayer cards, the accident you survived, the robbery you scaled through alive, the hospital bed you got out from, the new kids you got, the marriage you celebrated, the graduation that became a reality, the struggles you overcame…write them down and know with no doubt that God has been way too good!

Most people don’t thank because they don’t think! Rather they are so short sighted as to only see the things that didn’t work out, the plans that failed, the darkness that lingered, the tears that they shed, the bad things that happened etc.

I’m challenging you to get a notepad and write out all the good things that happened in the year, think about the supposed bad things that later turned out for good. Put on your thinking cap that you may be able to have a thankful heart 🙂

If you think and can’t find any reason to be thankful (even for the free oxygen you’re breathing), only then can you say the year was a terrible year!

I want to use this opportunity to thank all my readers for being there and encouraging me. I also encourage you to keep giving feedbacks via the comment box. I believe 2015 holds a lot more in store for us and I pray we all crossover, amen. Keep reading, keep being inspired! I love you, but God loves you more!

Happy New Year!!!

© Mfon Etuk, 2014

Photos by Me

Photos by Me


Time Machine

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Photo Credits by

Photo Credits by

I crave for the past,

Like a lion in captivity,

Longing for the vast lands of the Serengeti

For the wind in his hair

While running for miles without restrictions Roaring , stamping his authority as king.

I long for the days of simplicity ,

When it was either black or white

When there were no complications ,

Like a beach, the ocean and land intersecting but not conquering each other – mutual respect,

I miss the mutual respects,

I miss when the world didn’t have grey,

When it was color blind,

When there were no colors…

How I envy dogs,

Color blind from the spectrum of the world,

From the discriminations and segregation.

I dream of a world where the continents haven’t been connected by trade and greed,

Transcending over the ages into commerce and integration but still having the tenets of its heritage of greed and trade.

I envy the ants , untainted from the world, their civilization still as it was eons ago

I’m lost in trying to understand their way of life, how could they survive without “modern economics and commerce ” the devils of this world

But yet they have existed , they have thrived, they have survived.

What does that say about their ” more evolved ” Homo sapiens brothers? ,

Related by the ecosystem who have “evolved”

But still find a way to disregard the most fundamental aim of evolution, “survival”

How are they different from the savage beasts of the wild? .

I am African but feel less and less African with every passing day,

Like a caterpillar slowly transforming into a completely different person ,

Transforming into a butterfly.

But does this mean that I’m changing for the better ?

For of course, I am more beautiful , more flamboyant , alluring , pleasing to the eye, easily acceptable to the world , a world whose benchmark for acceptance is vanity.

With my newly found “acceptance ” by the world I have completely been transformed ,

Leaving my “crude and ugly ” caterpillar form behind,

Abandoning my roots, my heritage , becoming less African with every passing day.

What is a tree without its roots I pray thee? What is a building without its foundation?

Change comes and sweeps me off my feet,

Like a mermaid , she sings enticing songs to my ear,

O sweet melody! making its way to my heart, swaying me away from who I truly am ,

Leading me to her, and like a mermaid , beautifully created, her smile eventually captures my heart for good but her claws drag me down to the depths of the sea, destroyed , forever lost … Not just to myself but to the world.

But is change bad? Can’t there be a good transition ?

Of course change is the most constant thing in the world.

With time as her sister, they are an unconquerable force ,

Resistance is futile either for bad or good, we must change,

I crave the days of the past, I envy when I was simple, raw, untainted ,I miss when I was me.

Written by Obinna Obioma

Photo Credits by Xanndy Van Obi Photography

Photo Credits by Xanndy Van Obi Photography



Surrounded by people yet I feel so lonely

Like a cold blanket over me

I feel no warmth

My eyes are dampened

By the salty tears that keep trying to break free

I’m calling out and no one is answering

Not even the answering machine

Where are my friends when I need them?

Oh wait! There they are…

So why am I so alone?

I long for the peace that only you can give

The storms in my heart keep raging like a mighty tempest

I’m lost, cold and alone

No one understands me

Not even the closest to me…

I feel so empty

Like a barrel with no rum

Or a room with no one

My mind is going overboard

Trying to figure the figures that keep troubling me

Trying to fix the puzzle called life

Its so scrabbled, I need solitaire

Does any of this make sense?

Maybe not…

There’s always one thing after the other

School, work, money, marriage

Too much load, I need a carriage

Chasing after the wind

It’s like I’m chasing pavements

Help! I cry and no one is listening

Or have they got headphones on?

No, my cries are mere whispers

Too scared to turn to you

I feel you still hate me

What I did you can’t forgive

Oh, that’s the devil whispering

Depression cloaks me

Sadness encompasses me

The dark has come

I can’t even see the light

Not even a flash,

My life is a total wreckage

And they say this girl is damaged

People judging me from different degrees

When they don’t even own a law degree

I see them throwing the stones

When it was you who died and rose up before they rolled away the stone

My head is down, my knees are bent

I’m crying for help from the bottom of my heart

Cos I know I’m no Ben 10

It’s dark but I need the light

I’m listening to these sad songs

By other damaged people who feel my pain

It’s like the world is full of chains

People held captive by the need to love again

Eaten up by desires to succeed

Losing their joy in the pursuit of smoke

Yes Solomon said all is vanity

But I just felt it was because he was clothed in royalty

He didn’t feel the scourge of poverty

I can’t see you

But I know you’re there

Kinda like the air I breathe

Call it oxygen or carbon dioxide

Don’t leave me breathless

I’m no Shayne Ward

But I’ve got to hear your word

‘Say something, I’m giving up on you’

That’s the song I’m singing.

© Mfon Etuk, 2014.

Before the Big 30

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My darling,

I wanted to share a few of life’s most important lessons with you. You will have many significant people through your life, and a best friend. You do not need to be intimidated by your best friend, or your partner, mother or job for that matter. Trust those who show you the truth in them. We all need allies in life; but remember the benefit of the doubt is subjective, don’t give it to just anybody.

When fear threatens to cloud you, don’t let it. If fear is what pushes you to do something, make a decision DON’T DO IT, DON’T MAKE IT! If fear is the reason for putting something off, for procrastinating with an important decision, DO IT WITHOUT DELAY.

The success and happiness of your thirties is directly correlated to the decisions you make in your 20’s. People will always feel they know what’s good for you. Take the advice, nod, even mull it over, but in the end, do what YOUR HEART feels is right for YOU.

When faced with a decision, ask yourself three questions; is this the right decision? Is it for the right reasons? Is it the right time? If your answer is YES! YES! YES! You won’t go far wrong in life.

In everything you choose to do, be kind. Kindness is a rare commodity; it puts you and your interests behind that of the next person, not just in grand gestures, but even in the little things. It emanates from the heart, and is felt by those who cannot be fooled by insincerity. A shortcut to morality is the golden rule of life; ‘do unto others as you would have them do unto you’ you’ll discover that this really is the start of wisdom and righteousness.

While we’re on the subject of morality, relationships will NEVER be clear, it isn’t the nature of things. But you can help yourself by doing an exercise; make 3 lists:

  1. What you ‘want’ in the man/woman you love
  2. What you would ‘like’ in the man/woman you love
  3. What you will not tolerate in any man/woman in your life.

And stick to this list…preferably the first list. Standards dictate who we let into our heart, who stays there, and who deserves to be there. The more you compromise with these lists, the longer it will take to find your soul mate.

While looking for him/her, never covet what another woman/man has. Let what is meant to be yours, come to you. This habit people have of running in packs isn’t all that healthy either, after all the saying goes ‘relationSHIPS sink when they have too many passengers. You don’t need to let everybody in. And while you’re at it, Jealousy sucks! Try being on the receiving end of it, you’ll understand how damaging it can be to any relationship. Spending a fun weekend with someone is not enough to know if you really like them. You only really get to know people in their reactions when things are not going their way, and over a prolonged period. Further down the line when you think it’s a done deal, it’s still NEVER going to be ok to have sex in your parents’ house, unless you’re married. Get over it!

There’s never going to come a time when you should stop feeding the child in you. It’s the part of you which will always experience the real beauty of life, afresh, every time. Don’t ever be afraid of your own company. For anyone to love being with you, you must first love being with yourself. Wear your hair EXACTLY as you please. Society will have to get used to it. When you are choosing clothes think about what this will tell people about you when you wear them…and always be true to who you are. Everything on the outside should be a further expression of what is on the inside. Save! Yes, now IS the right time to do so.

There will be rough times, and you must survive your own traumas, but don’t fall victim to your story. Heal. Release. Move on. Thrive! It’s your motivation which will dictate the results of ANY action.

Always try to come from a good place. It will show. My darling you’ll never stop learning, and, while education is a leveler, LIFE is the best teacher. Best case scenario, use both. Reading is a joy! Read! It’s never too late to learn to love books. But if the books you’re reading don’t make you a better person, you’re reading the wrong books. Quality of life is what you give to yourself. Not what your job or your relationship gives you. Decide what you love to do, and start doing it TODAY.

Thank me later. And have fun in this life cos you only live once(YOLO) after all!

Written by Nancy Ufia

The Power of the Tongue

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Why Do I Still Love You?


I was inspired to write this poem when I looked around and noticed how people always search for reasons to love others. Eventually these reasons fade away and all that is left is a smoky fireplace with no heat to spare. The major thrust of this poem is that we love others as God loves us not based on the superficial reasons we have outlined because if He had to look for reasons to love us, we’d be dead by now. Read and be empowered. Happy New Month!

Why do I still Love You?

I highlight the reasons I love you
With my favorite pink highlighter
Your laughter echoes through my room,
Sweeter than my favorite ringtone.

I love how you talk,
How you walk,
With so much confidence,
Your entire being exudes elegance

Your smile stands out,
Like a flower in full bloom
Your suits are so many
Most of which are Armani,
I can’t even spot a crease,
Because you move with so much ease,

With no broom in your hands,you swept me off my feet!
Together we jumped the broom
And hung our happy memories in the hallway,
Like perfect artworks at a gallery opening.

We are as logs of wood burning in a fireplace
So fierce, water can’t quench us,
So hot, intruders dare not separate us,
We burn as one
Till just one flame is left..

We are both tired of fanning the flames
The love colored glasses have been taken off my face,
It feels like we are in another phase,
Now all I see are the extra chunks of flesh
Making the six packs disappear into one big belly.

I’m watching as your well chiselled face becomes saggy with age,
The sound of your snoring keeps me up at night,
Its like you’re playing the clarion,
The way you chew nuts
Sometimes drives me nuts!

Every little gesture drives me insane
Especially when you leave your shoes idling on the freshly vacuumed floral carpet!
Like a revolting puppet
The stench of your laundry leaves my face with an ugly crease.
Whatever happened to the washer?
This you did to get me slighted I suspect!

I’m stuck in the ground floor of my fairytale castle,
The one I built with my fantasies
The spell has worn off
Feelings like smoke fade off
What is left is the whiff of what once was. The emotions I wore on my sleeves are long gone
Its like I’m wearing sleeveless

Passion has burned out like the last candle in the sanctuary,
I can’t find the reasons why I love you anymore

I watch as the last flame dies in the fireplace
The whole room is dark and smoky…
I take one last look at what I thought was my perfect lovestory,
As I turn my back
My mind is brought back to the right track

God didn’t have any reason to love me
Oh mere dust that I am!
Yet He loved me enough to send His only son
To die for me!
Such love leaves me awestruck
How can I say I love Him when all I do is hate you?
How can I say I love Him when I’m yet selfconceited and overly self conscious!

Deeper than the ephemerals my love should be
It’s less about you, but more of me
It’s less about us, but more of Him
This is no Cinderella world I realize
Now His grace to love I’ll optimize

Why do I love you for the umpteenth time I ask,
I have no reasons to outline
But I choose to love without a decline
Even as He loved us, so will I love you
He said you’ve been created in His image and likeness
So why would my likeness for you rest in your Picasa edited images?
Who are we kidding?
There’s no man that is flawless
No matter how much we brush up and edit our images!

I’ll forever love you not because of what you are or what you have
I’ll always love you because He loves me without a reason!

Together we fan the flames back to life
And we’ll sit on this rocking chair while the heat keeps us warm in our old age,
Its not a perfect fairytale but we’ll live together to tell the tales.

© Mfon Etuk, 2014

Photo credit: Wood Burning Fireplace

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