Month: March 2016

22 Lessons

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The day broke out in elegance, the birds chirped joyfully heralding the dawn of a new age. No doubt, today is special, the 23rd of its kind for me and words are not enough to say how grateful I am to God for the gift of life! 😀 A big thank you to my family, friends and the amazing blogging community! God bless you! ❤ ❤

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Photo Credit: giphy.com

I’m gonna share lessons learnt so far, enjoy!

  1. Being a grown up has its perks, but I feel the whole excitement about adulthood is a tad overrated.
  1. You have fewer friends as you grow older. Face it, life gets busy. And if you’re living in a bustling city like Lagos, you may only see your friends once in a long time based on scheduled visits. No more bursting into the next room in your hostel just to give your friend some new gist 😦
  1. Life isn’t as rosy as the fairy-tale books said. Well, I should have learnt this a long time ago but I’ve always been a dreamer. Dreaming of better days and perfect scenarios but life continues to show me how imperfect everything is! :
  1. When you start paying your bills, you learn how to manage your resources a lot better. I think I did most of my shopping while I was in school, receiving regular allowances. But now that I have to earn the money, I’d rather not spend a huge chunk on some trendy bag. Sure there would be shopping days but now with extra calculation. 😉
  1. Oh yeah the outside world is scary! The culture shock is outta this world! Ok, that’s a little exaggerated. But being on the outside takes a whole lot of adjusting which I’m still learning.
  1. Apparently dates don’t just jump on you when you become an adult. Well for me, Mr.Right eludes me but still not a good enough reason to compromise. Being dateless could be sad though, but it’s still better than being in erroneous relationships.
  1. Forgive the past. There are tons of things I would like to change. Tons of things I would like to forget. But yet they hunt me every now and then. Hence the need to forgive the past. Just let it go because there’s really nothing you can do about the past, except learn from it.
  1. Although life can get really busy, you’re never too busy for those who matter. I’ve made the mistake of pushing away friends because I don’t get the time to reach out, but many lonely movie nights have reminded me of the importance of keeping them close.
  1. Dressing up as a grown up, so worth it! Yes I love the ‘tees, jeans and sneakers’ outfit but being a grown up also means wearing some heels, pencil skirts and mature colors.Of course I still revert to my comfy jeans and sneakers when I get the chance but I think the grown up dressing is super chic. 😉
  1. You know how your dad and his friends read the news and deliberate on how the economy is bad or how some policy isn’t favourable? Well, soon enough that becomes you, grasping for news to analyze with your friends and colleagues. Everything now relates to you, including the stuffs that were considered boring as a teen.
  1. Don’t push personal development and acquisition of skills to when you’re grown up. Read as much as you can while in school. I wish I did a little more reading of books that were not my school books. I wish I acquired new skills while I still had the ‘spare’ time. Now I have to fight to get that time to spend developing myself.
  1. When are you getting married? Yes I love romance and marriage and everything in between! But no, don’t ask me this because I’m now a ‘grown up’. It only freaks me out the more! I wish people could get that.
  1. Serve the Lord in your youth. Going by my new cycle of life I wonder what will happen when I become old. Serve God while you still have the strength and lesser things to concern yourself with. Because soon enough the pressures and pleasures of this life will overwhelm you.
  1. Don’t get depressed if you don’t get the hourglass shape, but don’t relent on staying healthy. Eat good food, fruits and a lot of water. Exercise as often as possible. And yes exercise needs a lot of commitment! Stay true to the goal.
  1. Don’t compare yourself with others. If there’s anything I learnt while growing up, it’s contentment. Worse was when I read in the Bible that covetousness is akin to idolatry. That scared the hell outta me. So yeah I admire stuffs but I don’t have to get them for myself especially if I don’t have the means to. Stay contented and avoid comparisons.
  1. Still on comparisons, don’t envy others who may have been your mates but are on a different stage of their lives. Be diligent in your endeavours and you’ll get there. No, you don’t have to be pilot because your friend who is a pilot bought a house. You don’t have to get married just because all your mates are doing it. Stay true to who you are.
  1. Live a little. No, live a lot. Live everyday. Not just on Fridays. Let your life go beyond you and let the blessings you have spread graciously to others around you. Therein lies the fulfillment of truly living.
  1. Attend weddings and birthdays. Be there for your friends. I’m not a pro here but I’ve learnt how necessary this is. I look forward to weddings this year and the dress shopping that comes with it 😉
  1. You are never grown up in the eyes of your parents. I kinda find this comforting, because I don’t want to be all ‘adult’. I want to still talk like a child over the phone with my dad or watch my mom  lovingly make my favourite meal. I want to be able to cry as a child when I’m upset and know that my parents would have the right things to say because they’ve passed through it. So don’t fight it when they treat you as a kid. Enjoy it because the world won’t see you as kid anymore.
  1. Growing up comes with responsibilities. You can never run from the ‘R’ word. You have to be responsible for your decisions and the consequences that come with them. Scary as this is, trust God to help you make the right decisions. You’ll also have to be responsible for others. If you can’t manage yourself well, how will you manage others?
  1. Don’t leave the big birthday celebrations for the big years like 18, 21, 25, 30 etc. See every year as a big one. Celebrate accomplishments, embrace failures and use them as corrections. I definitely didn’t want to celebrate this because I felt ‘it’s not a big deal’ but it is! I could stop breathing at any point but the fact that I’ve breathed long enough to see a new year is worth celebrating!
  1. I’ll leave this to those who have passed through this age before. What have you learnt? Just drop one or two lessons that would help me in the comment section. This will be a much appreciated birthday gift! 🙂 

Oopsy! I forgot to warn you it was gonna be a long read! If you made it to the end, well done! I’ll send a chunk of my birthday cake! 😀

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I’m usually grinning in pictures, just had to take one ‘grown up’ shot with no excessive grins 😀 😀 

If you like to see pictures, please follow @dainty_m on Instagram to view pictures from this amazing day!

Lots of love  ❤

©Mfon Etuk, 2016

A-Z Blogging Challenge

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A2Z-BADGE_[2016]

Hi guys!

Hope you’re still enjoying the Easter holidays- ’cause I am! 😀

April is a perfect month to carry out blogging challenges and I have decided to embark on the A-Z blogging challenge. It’s all about posting each day (except Sundays) using the letter for the day to create a topic.

The blogging challenge starts on April 1st with the letter A and on to the end of the month with Z. Please I’d need all the support and encouragement I can get from you. ❤

And yes! I’ll need topic suggestions as well (especially for letters like X and Q) 😉 . If you’ve got anything you’d like me to write about, please drop it in the comment section below.

I’m super psyched about this challenge! 😀 And I’d love you to join in!

Love,

~M.

 

Death Has Died

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death

Death has died!

Scream it in the streets!

Let the world know

The darkness is gone

The light has come

Death has died!

The unrestricted restricted Himself

To set us free from the chains

That have restricted us

Oh death!

Where is your sting?

Oh grave!

Where is your victory?

Alas!

The end has come! They cheered

Aha!

It is finished! He said

They thought it was over

They thought they had Him bound

But He could never be put down

By His strong hands death has died!

Oh death that scares the sons of men!

Oh grave that has swallowed up warriors!

What power do you have

To keep the one who is Life, dead?

Victory! He shouts

Bursting out of the belly of hell

With the keys of death in His hands

Death has died!

Shout it in the streets

Let the world know!

He is risen!

With an empty grave left in His wake

Nothing can hold Him bound

Not even the clenched jaws of death!

And as for you,

Rejoice!

For the victory won

Was a gift to give

Death was the bride price

To make you His very own adorned bride

Do not be afraid

Do not be sad

For your groom is alive!

And by His mighty hands

Death has died!

©Mfon Etuk, 2016

The Tag of Happiness

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happiness

Hey guys!

Hope the week has been beautiful so far. Mine has had its highs and lows. One definite ‘high’ for me is the nomination by the lovely Sarah from Forever Aspiring Writer for the ‘Tag of Happiness’. She writes so beautifully and I must say, her blog is the definition of happiness! Please check it out 😀

Here is how it goes:

Some SONGS that make me happy:

Shake it off by Taylor Swift, This is the Stuff by Francesca Battistelli, Fight Song by Rachel Platten, Life in colors by One Republic and Live it Up by Group 1 Crew.

Some BOOKS that make me happy:

Do Stylebooks count? 😀 And any book with a colourful book cover.

Some MOVIES that make me happy:

Fast and Furious! And any action movie that gets me at the edge of my seat 😉 Sitcoms definitely make me happy!

Some FOODS that make me happy:

Triple decker pizza and Ice cream!! 😛

Some WORDS that make me happy:

Shopping, fashion, dance, laughter, new …a lot come to mind!

Some SCENTS that make me happy:

I’ll definitely agree with Sarah on the air after it’s freshly rained, the scents from designer perfumes…does the aroma of freshly baked bread count? 😀

Some RANDOM things that make me happy:

Dancing, riding bikes, seeing a message from that special someone 😉 taking tours/hikes

Thank you Sarah, I had fun doing this! 😀 ❤

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Photo credit: giphy.com

I nominate everyone interested in this. I hope you’re as happy as I am while writing this.

What are some of the things that make you happy? Please share in the comment section 🙂

Lessons From a Thief

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This was completely mind blowing! I couldn’t help but share. Enjoy!

Out Loud

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord.
“And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.
For just as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so my ways are higher than your ways
and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.”
~Isaiah 55:8-9 (NLT)

One of the strongest opinions I hear when sharing my faith with others centers on the Christian belief that the moment you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior you are saved, regardless of the lifestyle you lived up until that point. The thief on the cross next to Jesus at the Crucifixion had no opportunity to change his lifestyle. He recognized Jesus for Who He is and Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43 NLT)

Heaven is not a reward for good behavior nor is hell punishment for people who behave badly. Our…

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I’m Okay and I’m On My Way

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Hey guys!

For those of you who have read the last couple of posts, you’d know I’ve been going through a lot and I really appreciate everyone who stuck with me through it! Thanks for the encouragement and prayers. It felt good to be on the receiving end of the encouragement!  😀

I’m glad to let you know I’m okay, and I’m on my way forward. The storm is calm and God’s peace has taken over. Thank God!

So I’m gonna share what I learnt from the past weeks;

Surround Yourself with ‘Encouragers’

I whined a lot about the depression and the bad breaks to quite a number of friends. The listeners listened; the encouragers encouraged me in the word, those who didn’t understand, still said something. A lot said the things I already knew. This reminded me of what Job said;

I also could speak like you, if you were in my place; I could make fine speeches against you and shake my head at you. –Job 16:4

This made me give a lot more thought to how I encourage others. Let’s face it, most of the things you hear, you already know. What makes the difference is the empathy and the understanding shown by the person encouraging. You don’t go saying stuffs when you have no idea what the person is going through.

It all lies in your hands

One of my senior friends took the time out to let me know the power to stop being miserable was in my hands. She understood my whining and empathized with me. But also told me that we are responsible for our happiness not other people. We determine how to react to bad stuffs that happen and how we let them affect us.

life quote

This was followed by another message by Joyce Meyer that spoke about taking personal responsibility of what happens to us. There’s a limit to which people can help us. The bulk of the work still rests on our shoulders and our decisions.

Get your groove back!

So hey, I pulled out of the frumps and into some pumps and took myself out. Watched a really cool movie, didn’t even realize when I finished the pack of popcorn! Then I went on a shopping spree! Got a really cute dress, an amazing perfume and yeah I got a new chunky ring! 😀 Also had my favourite frozen yoghurt! Now that’s my happy place!  I forgot about the stuffs weighing me down and I even noticed how cute the clouds were on my way home. Like some soft pillows for the sky to rest upon. So adorable!

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Photo Credit: shumilamalik5.wordpress.com

You can’t stay in your happy place forever

Oh, shopping is my happy place ! I totally love getting new stuffs! 😀 But I found out you really can’t stay in your happy place forever. Reality kicks in like an unwanted guest. Not long into the week I broke down again. It was an implosion that caused an explosion as I attacked the people that came around me. I always had my moods under control but I just lost it that day and they saw it- and of course, it freaked them out 😦

True Joy comes from God

Happiness is easily triggered by circumstances and is often short lived. But joy! Oh sweet joy that comes from knowing God and how much He loves you regardless of your imperfections. I sought after that joy. Repented of my sins and turned back to His warm embrace. 🙂

I had to stop looking to people and things to give me only what God could give me– joy and peace! 

So dear one, if you’re still going through the sad phase, please cheer up. The night can never stop the day from breaking forth. No matter how stormy it is, calmness is certain.  Take responsibility for your life. Christ has already given you victory over this battle. Just arise and take it!

Have a super amazing week ahead!

Lots of love,

©Mfon Etuk, 2016

Feel free to share your thoughts! I look forward to reading them 😀

***Song for the day; Wanna Be Happy by Kirk Franklin***

Beauty From Pain

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beauty from painAnguished. Numb. They say physical pain hurts, but I stand to say it doesn’t hurt as much as emotional pain. Heart throbbing and throat thickening pain. The pain that overwhelms you and leaves you shuddering beneath the sheets, watching as the tears fall like a waterfall. The pain that makes you wish you could just end it all. ‘Besides, the world will be just fine without you,’ the Devil whispers in your ears.

As a Christian, I know that I didn’t give myself life and I have no right to take it. But there are days such as this when I get so entangled in my mind’s web and I can’t find my way out. The jabbing pain numbs my very being. Feels like I’m losing it!

I know you may be wondering, ‘how did she get here?’ ‘How did the sweet peach girl turn all sour?’ :(: Oh my dear! I’m not sure. I enjoyed being by myself and slowly, the depression crept in, which I pampered as a baby till it became a full blown monster living in me. It didn’t take much to trigger it. I remember how I found it crazy whenever my mom would rebuke the spirit of depression in me. To me, it was just a normal ‘quiet’ mood that I nurtured with gloomy songs and poems. Like the sun, my smile sets and the gloom takes over. Clearly, it isn’t a harmless pet to keep, it’s a monster that is out to kill! Scary right? I should know!

Now I understand that the spirit of depression is a spirit of bondage. It steals your joy and peace and keeps you in a state of nothingness. A state where you’re but a walking dead going through life with no enthusiasm. Worse is when no one understands what’s going on. So you smile and wave like the Penguins of Madagascar so no one knows the monster you’re trying to hide.

So how can a broken person be writing to inspire others? Believe me, I wonder the same thing! The truth is, God’s ways are not our ways. He uses the weak things of the world to confound the strong (1 Cor 1:27).

God turned the very thing that could kill me into something that births life #MyTestimony

Out of my messed up mind he brought out messages! Out of the pain, came beauty. The poems I write in such low moments have been used in far reaching ways than I can imagine to bless lives, mine inclusive! Poems like Unspoken, Night before Light, Losing, Dark Nights, Dread, Can you hear me and Jekyll and Hyde were borne from pain. So the next time you read these poems, please read with understanding.

I am still learning to ‘rejoice always’ even when things get dark, I hold on to God’s word for illumination.

I’m a vessel in the potter’s hand, constantly molded into shape.

The process may seem really long, but beauty is sure. I still have relapses of depression. But I’m comforted because I know Jesus has won the victory!

So why am I telling you this? So you could shake your head in pity? Nah. We all face pain. Yours may not be a struggle with depression, it could be addictions, bitterness, insecurities, heartbreaks, sin or anything that leaves you broken. But if you think you’re completely whole, good for you! This, however is for the broken people like me who deal with pain. Too scared to admit we need help. But He knows we do. Surrender to Him in all honesty. Give him the fragments of your broken life and watch Him create a masterpiece!

There will be beauty from this pain! 

Thanks for staying to the end of this pretty long piece. Feel free to drop your thoughts in the comment section. God bless you! 🙂

©Mfon Etuk, 2016

***Song for the day- Beauty From Pain by Superchick***