Give yourself permission

Hi folks

Do you realize how much power you have been given by God to live a meaningful life? There are a lot of things that we cannot control such as pandemics, disappointments, retrenchments, heartbreaks, etc. however, there are many other things that are within our control that can determine the quality of life we live.

A leader is not effective if they do not realize their authority to make decisions. They are unable to lead correctly if they are indecisive, with no goals. We are all leaders in our lives. God has not given me the authority to live your life, I may influence positively or negatively- some of the decisions you make but you as an individual have the last say. Many situations attempt to steal our authority, these can be big and small things. Some of these could be persistent retail advertisements, excellent voting campaigns, social media influencers, etc. I list these three because you might only be following what is trending and not necessarily doing or purchasing something that you want or like. These situations steal your authority because you hand over your power based on temporary decision-making.

Today, I want to remind you that you have the power, self-control, and ability to limit or permit a lot of things that are brought to your attention. When someone asks you to do something for them and you do not have the capacity, you are allowed to say no. God will bring someone else who can provide for that need. When someone offers you something you are allowed to turn it down if it does not serve you or add any value to the life you are building.

I found myself trapped in a disease called “people-pleasing” that limited my voice and opinion. When I suffered from this, I wanted to do things for others because I had a false sense of identity. I somehow treated people better than I treated myself. I did not understand that I kept pouring out to others from an empty cup, I was burnt out every year-end and it was unhealthy. Fortunately, I am learning to find my identity in Christ and as I heal from this, I continue to embrace my worth. The change started when I realized that I have the power to give myself permission to live a quality life. Being constantly overwhelmed and frustrated is not a quality life. I had to choose to release certain habits and to take on new ones. This is teaching me not to see myself as less worthy than others. I must take care of myself, my mind, my body, and my emotions to become a healthier and more intentional human being. The benefit of embracing self-worth comes with the ability to say no, to set clear and healthy boundaries, and to permit me to live a good and meaningful life. If you do not know what you deserve, you accept anything. If you do not understand that God wants the best for you (mentally, spiritually, physically, emotionally), you will continue to settle for less. You will stay in positions, friendships, and spaces that keep you stagnant.

So, what’s your story? What unhealthy things are you permitting to continue dominating your life? What changes would you like to see? God will give you the grace to change those unhealthy habits and mindset- but you must permit Him to do so and play your part. I hope and pray that your eyes may also be opened to the truth of who you are. When you get to find out just how God sees you, how valuable you are, you will have a mindset shift. You have a great responsibility to take care of what God has placed under your care; you and your well-being are part of the package. When you take care of yourself, it is often easier to support those around you. Permit yourself to fulfill the dreams in your heart. We resist the ideas God gives us because we see our lack of finances, energy, capacity, etc. You are sometimes the person that is standing in your way to a better future. Allow yourself to explore the godly desires and trust that God will show up and do the rest.

Permit yourself to be who you are, tap into the areas that scare you the most- they are probably placed in you for a good reason. Do not be too afraid to fail, we all fail at some point.

“God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved; God shall help her, just at the break of dawn” – Psalm 46:5.

With love,

Unathi.

Healing- by Zandile

My healing journey started in 2004/5 after I heard a sermon on Psalm 103: 1-5 “who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” The speaker went on to speak about how the eagle is renewed. How it sheds its beak, talons, and feathers and that after several days it emerges as a new bird, reborn almost (I later read that this analogy is not scientific, but it gets the message across). From that sermon, I came out encouraged and started to plead my case before God. I had two requests

1. Lord, please restore my hymen,

2. Lord, please erase my memory of ever  being abused,

My desire for healing was not just physical but I longed for a new existence where my past had been erased. The way the speaker delivered the message made me believe that I can become a new creation with a new identity and no ugly past.

I never did forget, nor did I get a new hymen, but God KEPT me and gave me the grace to finish my studies and live with this thorn in my flesh. He took away the guilt and shame that I felt and over time as I continue to share my testimony God continued to remove the burden of my childhood sexual abuse experience from my shoulders.

Back then I thought healing was about undoing what had happened. I thought it was some spiritual hypnosis where I would come out not even remembering what had happened. I later learned that the complete erasing of my trials would also mean erasing who I am. Overcoming the challenges I went through or even learning through those trials has resulted in the person that I am today. Not to say that God needed to hurt me to mold me into becoming who I am right now, but everything that had happened, together with God’s grace resulted in the person I am today and I love who I am and who I am becoming.

I love the image that pops up when you search for the Graves to Garden song by Elevation worship. It is a picture of flowers growing inside a skeleton. For me, the skeleton represents death and the flowers a new life. The pain and suffering we go through in life can result in death, even if the death is not literal, but it can be the death of our dreams, hopes, joy, etc. However, God’s grace on us, allows the flowers to grow even in the death situation. The flowers being newfound hope, faith, joy, dreams creativity, etc. One cannot appreciate beauty without something “not beautiful” to compare with.

I have learned over the years that healing is a continuous process. We need to constantly check in with ourselves and surrender our hurts before God to be healed. My childhood experience is not the only thing I have had to heal from. I’ve had to heal from unmet expectations in my career, friendships that fizzled out and left me heartbroken, the unexpected challenges of motherhood, etc. Sometimes the process of healing takes longer with me asking questions and praying to God for his hand to hold me. Sometimes it’s within a short space of time with me laughing at myself and saying “Zandi, your children don’t hate you.”

We might not know why we go through some experiences in life but the bible has forewarned us in John 16:33  “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Picture by Annie Spratt from Unsplash.

Sometimes we delay our healing by going over and over the things that hurt us, but through God’s grace we can go to him to exchange our pain for something better as stated in Isaiah 61:3 “and provide for those who grieve in Zion— to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.”

 When we are well, we display his splendor.

Zandile Mabeleng is the founder of Be Intentional NPC. She aims to reach as many people as she possibly can with child abuse prevention messages. She has a long bucket list and hopes to live in several countries for 5 years at a time. Wealth is her portion.

Growth- by Ndileka Mbina

Growth is a stage or condition in increasing, developing, or maturing (Merriam Webster Dictionary).

In general, growth means self-improvement of your skills, personal qualities, knowledge, outlook, and goals; whenever you seek to better yourself in any way. For me, personal growth can be anything that helps you go after your best self.

Why is personal growth important?

Apart from the value of gaining new knowledge and advancing yourself as an individual, the very act of pursuing personal growth separates you from the rest. There are different types of growth but in this blog post we discuss five which are mental, social, spiritual, emotional, and physical growth.

Mental Growth

Mental Growth is about growing or enriching your mind, some activities we can do can be reading a book or watching educational YouTube videos to improve your skills. By setting aside some time each day or week you can begin to see growth in areas of your life.

Social Growth

This category is all about improving your communication, in my opinion, this category is the most overlooked. However social development is equally important. In this category, I learn new languages and practice with those I meet.

Spiritual growth

Spiritual growth can mean different things for different folks, my understanding of it is daily taking up your cross and following Christ, practicing the presence of God, and allowing His will over yours. Some of the activities I do daily are meditating and studying the bible, journaling, and praise and worship that’s my daily posture and I have learned without these activities I am not my true self.

Emotional growth

Emotional growth can be, well, emotional because of this it can be easy to brush it off. I have done my share of doing this, I have realized that it wasn’t healthy behavior. The reality is that holding in your emotions and brushing them off only makes it worse when they finally come out. Some of the things we can do is talk to a friend or journal.

Physical growth

Physical growth is about more than exercise it’s also about eating and sleeping habits to name a few, some of the activities we can do are forming healthy habits all around.

In conclusion, growth requires intentionality, knowing what you want and doing something towards your goals goes a long way. I live by a set of value systems that helps me to discipline and track my growth daily. Growth is not without process therefore patience is required as we journey towards self-improvement. I have come to understand that doing small tasks daily produces great results.

Surrounding yourself with people who also actively seek self-improvement makes the journey much more meaningful. Start asking yourself the hard questions and get the right people to support you such as mentors or advisors. Personal growth isn’t an end goal but a way of living to guide your daily actions.

Ndileka Mbina is a student of life, a novice writer, and works in food production. She has great passion for people.

How quickly do you want to heal?

Hi folks,

I recently looked up the word resilient and found that the Merriam Webster dictionary defines it as an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change. The word easily caught my attention and encouraged me further as I wrote this blog post. Resilience is associated with lower rates of depression and greater life satisfaction. This skill challenges us to question ourselves on whether we can shift our forty-year wilderness journey to an eleven-day one, allow me to explain this.

The definition highlighted above surprised me, the ability to recover quickly seems like such a fairy tale. I have experienced long years of healing from some past incidences to such an extent that I got to a place of acceptance that even if miracles happen, healing processes are always long. Although there may be some truth to this, this definition tells me that there is another side to the healing process. It opens a possibility that each of us could have this depending on how much or how quickly we want to heal. Unfortunately, we can easily become addicted to destructive patterns because we have known them for long periods. This can lead us to stay in difficult or toxic situations. It is a fact that challenges will always be a part of our lives, whether we invite them or not; but it is also comforting to know that there are healthier ways we can deal with life where we do not have to stay bitter and angry after difficulties. We can recover quicker from the challenges that life brings, this will however, take an unwavering effort where we focus on the goal of healing.

My question today is, what makes healing take longer with some people? We know that most times recovery happens through processes. A process usually has an undefined time-frame and differs from person to person. The time-frame can be influenced by a few factors such as willingness, capacity, environment, tenacity, or even ability to let go and allow things to flow as they should. All these factors shape one’s resilience therefore determining how quickly we can heal. These factors help build resilience. If you are willing to be healed, you can look for learning material, teachings, videos and support that will help you reset your current journey and aim for healing. As you search for ways to get better, you train your mental muscles to know that there is victory at the end of a battle. We usually attract what we focus on, so when our focus is to be healed, we will get to that place- I know this from my own experience. However, I did not realize that the time-frame can be shortened or lengthened based on ones’ willingness.

It is possible to go through a difficult situation and recover and be healthy enough to continue with new chapters that life has for you- without it taking many years. It is also important to go through the experiences without wanting shortcuts because through those one becomes wiser. As you are stretched through your difficulties you find that you end up with a richer, more compassionate, and realistic character that can thrive in life. Resilience allows you to go through your testing times but also encourages you not to pitch your tent in that place as you recognize it as a stage or phase that is meant to last briefly. Resilience is that voice that says “okay, we have gone through this but get up now, we have to go”. Adopting the attitude of a resilient mind helps you not to fear disappointment or pain, it shifts your thinking to know that things will happen, things that are beyond your control, but those things will not destroy you. I often resisted processes and I think that is what made most of my healing journeys tough and unnecessrily long. I can certainly relate to the Israelites in the Bible who took forty years when they could have traveled eleven days to their destination. The constant overthinking, or resistance to change can cost us and delay the journey.

I encourage you to be resolute on your recovery journey, there is still a lot that lies waiting for you. The lenses we wear sometimes determine the opportunities we take up; we can be able to recognize the right doors with a better sense of ease and clarity when we are healed. Healing is a layered journey but how much you will heal or how quickly it will happen is all in your hands. Give yourself permission to experience it in an accelerated way.

“For the LORD your God has blessed you in all the work of your hand. He knows your trudging through this great wilderness. These forty years the LORD your God has been with you; you have lacked nothing”. – Deuteronomy 2: 7

With love,

Unathi.

Who told you that?

Hi folks,

I have been reflecting on how many lies we end up believing just because a more prominent society has said something about our worth or identity. I know I have been victim to this believing all the negativity that was thrown my way. People are allowed to present themselves as they wish but where do we as individuals draw the line?

In today’s blog post, I want us to reflect on what stole our power and conviction of who we truly are. What were some of the things you strongly believed in before you were turned down or rejected? Did you believe in true love, or that you would become a prominent businesswoman or man? Did you believe that you would contribute to society and be the one to provide financial support to the poor and marginalized communities? Many of us have given up on our dreams and have adopted the identity that was falsely spoken to us. At times, those words came because of a difficult situation or fight that seems to never end. We must however get to a place where we can separate our identity from our situation. Our stuff, our accolades or lack thereof certainly do not define who we are. We are who we are based on what God calls us, not what human beings choose to label us. When we allow human beings to define us, we allow limitation to be the driving force of our identity, human beings can only see a glimpse of what God allows them to see, whereas God sees it all. He knows our past from our future, and He is in the present situation helping us navigate to our areas of destiny.

My question to you today is “who told you that?”, who told you it is okay to hang your head in shame because of all the mistakes you made? Is there one perfect person in this world we live in? Absolutely not, not even one. So why do we allow life and people to play judge over our lives, giving them authority to speak things that could or are probably derailing us? What we believe about ourselves determines how we treat and carry ourselves. We cannot control what others think, their thoughts are based on their view and their personal experiences. You could meet someone who is dealing with their problems who will tell you that your vision and dream is silly and unrealistic- and that is allowed because that vision or dream was not revealed to them. God reveals things to certain people for a reason. So, we cannot afford to hand over our power to individuals, we cannot continue to allow others to take measurements from their limited point of view. So, I ask again, who told you that? What is the most negative thing you believe about yourself and your current situation, are you allowing it to become part of your identity? If you are, I encourage you to start reflecting on the changes you need to make in your life. All that negativity and those toxic thought patterns must go, you must realize the power God has placed in your hands to accept or reject your destiny. In a realistic life, it is simply impossible to have everyone understanding or liking you, that is part of life because we are all created differently- only God can fulfill that role. Your role is to love and respect people but not to necessarily aim to please everyone you meet and certainly not to believe their negative opinions about you.

Let us learn from children! Kids are so free to be themselves, they are genuine in their activities and curiosity, they seem to go with the flow of life without much care in the world. Fortunately for us as adults, we have learned the wisdom to know when to act and when to speak or keep quiet, and that can be a good thing -but we can surely take a page from the little ones in how much freedom we allow in our lives. I challenge you to stop living your life based on the limitations set by life’s circumstances. Let us continue to fight the good fight of faith, going back to that place where we had the freedom to just be ourselves, the freedom to know we are enough and are loved despite what we have done or not done. I pray the good LORD may establish your steps as you decide to walk in your true identity and freedom, a freedom that is free of human opinion but filled with God’s word. You are free to be you, fearfully and wonderfully made in God’s image- it’s time to believe it.

“Now the LORD is the Spirit and where the Spirit of the LORD is, there is freedom”- 2 Corinthians 3: 17.

With love,

Unathi.

Cast down your nets

Hi folks

Today, I hope to encourage you and help your faith rise despite any difficult circumstances you may be facing. God always has more for us; the bible tells us that His promises are yes and amen. Let us say yes to the promises of a faithful God!

I want us to chat about faith for the dreams, visions, and healing God has placed in our lives. The story of the mustard seed in the bible tells us if we are to have faith as little as a mustard seed, we can see mountains move (Matthew 17: 20). I want to encourage you to keep believing God for the things that He can do in your life.

All the successful people we know probably had to take some risk to get to where they are now. Faith demands that you step out of your comfort zone and do what is unusual to get unusual results. They believed in their dreams and visions and decided to cast out their nets. Although they saw nothing at one time, they believed that eventually, things would change for them. How about you, where is your faith?

Constant disappointments can derail people. We have tried to do things and have failed dismally but the passion for some things simply does not go away. It continues to burn inside but we may end up ignoring the flames because nothing has changed yet, the situation may even be worse than it was before. That is how Peter in the bible probably felt after fishing the whole night without catching a thing. He did his best, but he had no luck until the King of kings, Jesus Christ spoke a word and said, “Let your nets down for a catch”. Peter obeyed and probably realized at that moment that it would take a miracle to get any fish because he tried and failed- but he did it anyway and yielded much from his obedience (Luke 5). We can learn a lesson here that faith is believing in the power of a greater and faithful God, believing He can do it despite our failed attempts.

What dreams have you given up on, what vision have you cast aside because all the doors you knocked on were shut? Is your health (mentally and physically) getting worse, but you have made peace with it because it has been too long since your prayers were answered? I believe in taking breaks and resting in between, when I have tried all I can, I temporarily let go of some things and focus on what God wants me to focus on. However, at the back of my mind, I know God has not changed His mind about His purpose for my life. I want to encourage you today, to remember that God has not changed His mind about the things that He has promised you, it may take many years before you see them happen, but He is faithful, and He makes everything beautiful in its time. If you have taken breaks and ran out of ideas on how to achieve certain things, it is okay. When Jesus is ready to change your situation, He will speak one word and it will come to pass.

My question to you is when Jesus speaks and instructs you to act, to go, to run, to try again, to cast out that net will you be willing? Remember our walk with God is active and it is a partnership, where both must agree and do our part. In your tired and disappointed state are you willing to allow God to be God, to speak a word, and to change things around for you? He certainly can do that for those who believe in Him. God honors faith, even as little as a mustard seed. I encourage you to start believing again, especially the things that have been in your heart for a long time. May God give you His strength to believe again, may He be your primary focus and may you believe in His power and not just your human strength and gifts. May God pleasantly surprise you as you believe in Him.

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” Hebrews 11: 1

With love,

Unathi.

Positive Thinking

Hey folks

Have you ever heard of the scripture “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he”? (Proverbs 23:7). If you have, what are your thoughts about it, does it resonate with you? Today, I want us to explore how our thinking patterns impact our lives, whether we are aware of it or not. Shifting our thinking from negative to positive will improve the quality of our lives.

The way we think shows clearly in the way we carry ourselves and make decisions. If our view is half-empty, then we are probably those people who often have some resistance to life and new things and that is because we operate from a place of fear. Of course, it is good to be wise and know when to act but if we are always skeptical of things and people, it can be a problem. It is necessary to shift our point of view from half-empty to half-full. When your perception is more positive, you are most likely to attract more positive events and people in your life. The little disappointments of life do not get you down easily because generally, you are a positive person that has good expectations from life.

My question to you today is what do your thoughts look like, do you ever take account of them? If you could draw a representation of your thoughts on a piece of paper, what would we see? Would it be a garden filled with flowers or a dark and misty cave? I am referring to the regular thoughts that visit your mind, I know some days will be different from others depending on your activities, but generally, as people, we either have healthy thoughts or negative thoughts. Life gets busy, I understand that we hardly find any time to stop and think about what our thought life looks like. This is hidden from others and only exposed to you and God. The fact that it is hidden should not stop you from considering and fixing the affected areas in your mind. “As a man thinketh, so is he”. I believe this statement is true because we may say one thing about ourselves, but the manifestation of our actions stems from what we consider as truth. There was a time in my life when my self-esteem and worth were close to zero. I did not believe in myself, and my thoughts were obviously very negative and it showed in the relationships that I found myself in, it showed in the things that I attracted and tolerated. As much as there will be bad characters in life which we cannot avoid, we have the right to decide who stays in our lives. So, when we see little value in our lives, it will probably show in what we entertain and tolerate. If you have negative thoughts 70% of the time, guess what? Your outlook on life will be negative. This may be an indication of healing that needs to take place. Healing can only start when you take account of your current thought process and decide to act on improving/ changing it.

Your behavior can be a reflection of what is going on internally.

Training our minds and thoughts takes time, so does anything else that is worth having. So, if you recognize or know that your thoughts are generally in a horrible state, the first step would be to admit to yourself without judging yourself harshly. Once you realize that your “truth” about life, in general, is negative, then you can start searching for the real truth, one that will set you free from the bondage of negative thinking. This negative mindset can feel like a prison, especially if you are bitter and angry towards others and yourself as you replay the same scenarios repeatedly. Doing that will only cause damage. Once you are honest with your current state, the next step would be to forgive yourself for having allowed your mind to be locked in such a state. Thirdly, try and remember what happened to you. What happened before you had a negative mindset, what got you there? It could be a series of events but try and remember which particular event got you to abandon your happier and healthier self? Going back to the event might get you angry or make you sad again but it will be worth it if you confront it. Once you confront it, remind yourself that you are no longer living there, life is different for you now and so will your thoughts be. Reconcile with this place in your life and recognize that you hold the keys to your freedom. You are not your thoughts, just an observer of them, remember that.

Of course, the negative thoughts will attempt to come back but when you are aware of these thoughts and have decided that they do not belong with you then you are a step closer to change. Do not allow your thoughts to consume you, you have power over them. Make a habit of checking in on yourself daily, every morning and every night. Check how you are feeling and identify any negative thoughts that come up, release them, and replace them with good thoughts such as your dreams and where you see yourself in the future. When these negative thoughts come up, speak to them as the manager of your life and take a decisive stand against them- you hold the key to a healthier mental state.

As your new thinking pattern establishes, you will see a great change in your outlook and experiences. Be patient with yourself in this process.

“Even a child is known by his deeds, whether what he does is pure and right”- Proverbs 20: 11.

With love,

Unathi.

Let’s Grow

Hey folks

Today I want to chat about growth and give you a few tips on how you can get there. This stage of life is available for any person but doesn’t happen for everyone. The difference between two people, one who grows and another who does not grow is being intentional about one’s growth process and making it a priority. I want us to look at growth from a personal development point of view. I am not speaking about the external environment but the internal. Growth must start inside of us before we can change the world around us. Life can continue to look the same for many years if we are not willing to desire some change in our lives.

Personal development comes when we decide we want to become better versions of ourselves. Sometimes we can recognize our bad habits, or we may have experienced the consequences of bad decisions. Other times we may simply be unhappy with how we live our lives; all these different things happen for a purpose – and it is usually to propel us into becoming better.

This decision to become better comes at a cost, it takes courage to want to grow or develop oneself. It is often easier said than done and will certainly not happen until we make a firm decision coupled with consistent actions towards developing ourselves. I believe deciding to improve oneself is a game-changer, it bears a lot of good fruit such as self-love, self-confidence, self-discovery, less worry about what others think, etc.

Before you start developing yourself, you must become self-aware. You must know yourself before you can embark on any change. Do a quick self-assessment by asking yourself the following questions:

  1. Who are you? Describe yourself in three words that summarizes the core of who you are
  2. What key things do you like/ dislike?
  3. Where do your strengths lie?
  4. What are your weaknesses?

The answers to these questions should give you a bit of an idea of who you are, what you are good at, and what you suck at. Once you have jotted these down, have a look at the next category.

Do a self-assessment of these following aspects, simply rate where you are on each of these on a scale of 1-5 (1 being poor, 5 being excellent):

  • Spiritual, mental, physical, financial, emotional.

These categories will give you an indication of what is lacking or needs improvement. Choose to start working on any of the five categories that scored 2 and below. I would suggest you set up a plan for each of these. Decide what needs to change or be improved, and where you would like to see yourself in those areas. Next, determine what activities you must do to get there and give yourself a time frame of 6 months. If you can, find an accountability partner who can check in with you every month end. Start by listing all the activities planned for the month by category and at the end of each month give that person an account of the activities you have completed. As an example, if you scored 2 on finances, focus on doing something about it in the next 6 months. Let’s say you have a debt of R3000. Develop a plan of how you can sacrifice an additional R250 in your budget to pay off that R3000 over the next 6 months. The key thing is to commit to an amount and share it with your accountability partner. Eventually, it will help with bringing some change in your financial situation. When you become gain some financial freedom you are already improving the life you are living. Do the same with all the other categories that had low scores. At the end of 6 months, assess how far you are with your categories and activities, if you need more time, expand your time-frame, and repeat the steps. If you have managed to accomplish all you needed to do in those 6 months, spoil yourself for your hard work and re-assess what other areas you can start working on in a similar way. Even when we are good at stuff, we can always do better, we can aim for excellence and be intentional about it!

We are responsible for our lives and God has given us the wisdom and grace to do better. With each day, we have an opportunity to improve ourselves and become the best we can be. I encourage you to take this journey of self-development seriously. Partner with God, I find Holy Spirit to be the most practical ever, He can give you wisdom on how to customize your self-development journey. This process can open many doors and will change the way you see yourself. It will help you move from wanting others to do things for you to realizing how much power is already in your hands. May God give you the revelation and strength to do it.

“Change is inevitable, growth is optional”- John C Maxwell

“…so, I will save you, and you shall be a blessing. Do not fear, let your hands be strong”. -Zechariah 8: 13.

With love,

Unathi.

Bloom where you are planted

Hi folks,

One of the most frustrating things I have ever experienced is feeling like I am in the wrong place. When you have a big dream inside of you, you may struggle with the comparison of the current situation vs your dreams. When I go through this cycle of frustration, I am often reminded of King David in the bible. He was anointed to be king at a very young age but only appointed for the office of being a king much later in life. Time went by before he could walk into that place of destiny, and he still had to be present in the events of his life before assuming the role of a king. I am certain it was not easy for him, knowing he had a great calling on his life but still going through the mundane activities of each day before the manifestation of that dream. However, we read in the bible that life continued before the great role was filled and God worked in His life even then. 

In today’s blog post, I want us to chat about how we can make the best of our current situations. As Christians, we know that we cannot live without the guidance of the Holy Spirit and that comes with a surrendered heart. This means allowing Holy Spirit to lead you on the next right thing to do, or the next big step to take. If our lives are truly surrendered to God, why do we worry so much about tomorrow? We hardly go to sleep worried about whether the next day will come or not, yet we worry so easily about God’s promises over our lives or the dreams He has placed within us. So, with all the stressing and worrying about being misplaced or stuck in certain cycles in my life, I try and remember that I have surrendered my life to a God who knows it all. This God wants me to succeed because it brings Him great joy to see me prosper, and at His right time, He will make sure it all comes to pass. I rationalize it by reminding myself that I am where I am because God is still allowing it. I may not see it, but He knows what else still needs to be refined in and through me being in this place. No matter how much I may want to see myself stepping into a new season, only God knows exactly when that time will be- and He will lead me to it. He will do the same for you!

In the meantime, it is important to ask God to open our eyes to what He is doing in the now. There could be numerous reasons why the anticipated shift in your life has not taken place yet:

  • Perhaps you are still where you are because you are leading people that have no idea how to move forward.
  • You may still be where you are because you are the only one that can pray for people to receive Christ in their lives.
  • You may still be where you are because you are the only one that knows how to shine the light of Christ so that people may be introduced to our Saviour.
  • You may still be where you are because God is completing the refinement process of your character. God knows it all and He has a purpose for you now, all of it builds up towards that greater or better dream you have inside.
  • Perhaps there is an important skill that God wants to impart to you, but you may be too closed off to even learn. Pause and reflect and ask God what He is trying to teach you in the now.

My encouragement to you today is to seek God for the now, be where the Holy Spirit is. He can open your eyes to see many other opportunities you may have missed because you are so focused on what is to come. Relax a bit, be kind to yourself and rest in the Lord, He will guide you on the next step to take. Your today matters and is just as precious as tomorrow but tomorrow is not even guaranteed so let us enjoy what God has given us in the now. I pray you may see your today as the Lord sees it, that you are placed wherever you are for a divine purpose, you contribute to people’s lives just by being the best version of yourself. When that noisy voice in our heads comes back to make us feel like we are behind, let us be bold enough to remind ourselves that we are led by Holy Spirit who knows the times and seasons under heaven. He is faithful enough to tell us of the next thing in His heart but also wants us to complete the current thing that contributes to the next big thing.

You are given an opportunity to bloom where you are planted, go ahead, embrace it and give it your all.

“Be still and know that I am God, I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth”- Psalm 46:10.

With love,

Unathi.

Clutter

Hi folks,

I was reflecting recently, thinking about how we live in such a fast-paced world that conditions us to think we should accumulate stuff, the more you can afford, the more stuff you buy. I have only been recently awakened from this nightmare. I call it a nightmare because we equate our worth to things, the more we have, the better we think we are yet this is not true. God considers us worthy based on our relationship with Jesus Christ and not based on stuff.

In today’s blog post, I want to share my thoughts on clutter. Some synonyms to clutter are mess, chaos, disorder, rubbish, or confusion. I am certain these give a clear idea of what clutter means. I was inspired to write this post because there has been so much clutter in my life over the years. In my case, I saw it in the physical order of things and my mental health state. I started removing items I have not used in years and donating these. I have been doing this in phases, some items were easier to let go of, especially those I have lost interest in. I did this exercise again recently and was surprised by the little stuff I was still able to give away again. I think in the first phase of doing this I kept some of the stuff because I thought I would need them soon, although I knew they had not been used in ages. I also unsubscribed to newsletters and emails I have not checked in months.

This exercise led me to some self-reflection. I believe our physical behavior is a manifestation of our internal perception. Through this process, I realized that the clutter is saying a lot about my internal situation. I asked myself a few questions:

  • Why am I holding onto things, even those I have not used in years?
  • What am I scared of, by keeping them?
  • What would letting go of unnecessary things look like?
  • Which things am I going to release?

By providing an honest answer to each of these questions, I was led to so much revelation on my fears and bad habits, why I do the things I do, and why I react the way I do. A lot of the way we do things starts from our childhood and has been carried on throughout our adult lives out of habit. After doing this exercise, I had to repent and ask God to help me. I realized that I had attached my worth to things/ stuff. The more I had, the better I felt and filled the void of issues undealt with.

Declutter is defined as removing clutter from an area, this can apply in any area of one’s life, be it physical, emotional, spiritual, financial, or mental. This does not mean packing them away in a wardrobe stacked with other clothes like I used to do, it means releasing them. These questions above brought to light the need for me to declutter. Being honest with myself helped me start a journey of decluttering my life, one step at a time I am releasing the things that are not of value, whether these are tangible or intangible. These things include clothing, paper (notes, old documents etc.), negative and destructive thought processes amongst other things. Every time I release these comes freedom and renewal to my thoughts.

I read an article where a psychologist points out that clutter provides interesting clues about our state of mind. He mentions that the way you see your clutter is the way you see yourself and your relationships. He also links the clutter to childhood experiences. He gives an example that you may find an over-stocked kitchen pantry in the home of someone who grew up poor or too many clothes in the wardrobe of someone that was always given hand-me-downs as a child. I thought this was interesting because it confirmed to me that as human beings, we hardly give ourselves time to assess why we behave the way we do.

What is your clutter telling you?

As I continue this journey, I also encourage you to also take an inventory of your life. Ask yourself if you need all the stuff, you are keeping or entertaining. If not, why are you keeping them? What do those things represent or mean to you? Is it a healthy representation? If not, what are you going to do about it?

As mentioned above, we are not defined by things. Yes, we are allowed to enjoy the finer things in life but if these get out of control or become unnecessary or even become idols, we need to stop it and declutter. I am grateful that I did not just move to a bigger place where all my “stuff” could fit but I had to go through this irritation to get to the bottom of hidden issues like letting go of a lack mentality. All things work out for good, even the clutter we surround ourselves with! If you need any support or practical tips on how to do this, click on the contact button and leave a message, I will get back to you.

A quote by Barbara Hemphill puts it so well “Clutter is nothing more than postponed decisions”.

“It is your responsibility to act. We are behind you so go ahead and get it done” – Ezra 10:4.

With love,

Unathi.