2016 has been a phenomenal year personally for me. A lot of doors and opportunities have come my way. Although not all things went the way I expected, overall I can say I am leaving 2016 more confident, more equipped, more exposed, and more progressive than I started it.
As I reflected on the year 2016, I gleaned a few lessons I would love to share with you, my loyal readers.
GOD DOESN’T FEEL COMPELLED TO EXPLAIN HIMSELF TO YOU
Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but thou shalt know hereafter. – John 13:7
This scripture was a classic encounter between Jesus and Peter. The latter wanting to understand why Jesus wanted to wash the feet of his disciples. Jesus didn’t see the need to explain himself to Peter. Instead he was blunt with him and said; well you would understand it one day.
Personally there have been a couple of times I have gone through experiences which were incoherent with my own logic. I have dared a couple of times to question God “Why?” In most occasions I did not get any answers. But all in all I continue to keep faith, knowing that all things will eventually work together for my own good in the fullness of time.
Steve Jobs captures this in his own terms:
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something – your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever”
PEOPLE WILL ALWAYS BE UNGRATEFUL
Ingratitude is a foul symptom of a false sense of entitlement which is nonexistent in many cases.
I have been amazed at the number of ungrateful people I have encountered in 2016.
As I pondered on this, I remembered the story of the ten lepers. It then dawned on me that there will always be the question “where are the other nine”
And Jesus answering said, were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? – Luke 17:17
People have no idea the extent to which others go to meet their demands, even if it is half way , and yet they see no reason to show any slight semblance of appreciation.
I remember I had to borrow money to sort out a Christian brother who was in tight situation with the assurance that he will reimburse me when all is said and done.I was so scandalized when this dude didn’t pick the phone to even say “thank you” after going out of my way to save his face, left alone making any attempt to pay back the money.
I later had to cough the money to pay off the person I borrowed from.
I can assure you that there are a lot of such people all over the place, in churches, mosques, workplaces etc. They are very educated and hence you expect them to know better but sadly they don’t.
The truth is that nobody owes you anything in life, not your parents, your spouse, friends etc. hence don’t take any favor someone shows you for granted.
TRUE FRIENDS ARE THOSE WHO CAN HANDLE YOUR “NO”
I have had a couple of strained relationships this year because I told some people “NO”. They were so offended and couldn’t find a way past their blind-folding ego.
Truth be told, I am not God, I can’t meet all your needs. So are you. I therefore encourage you that let God be God and men be men.
Why should you be offended because someone could not meet your needs? Instead if you direct the anger towards fixing that problem, it will be gone in no time.
So get real. Never assume anything. There are people who push around four wheel drives and yet have no food to eat. That is what they prefer and enjoy satisfaction from, so if you go to ask money from such a person and he says he can’t help you, why should you be angry?
For me YES is an answer and “NO” is equally a good answer. The good book encourages us that we should we use both without fear or favor.
But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.- Mathew 5:37
I have concluded that true friends are those who can take a ‘no’ from you and still stick around and not be offended.
ALWAYS GIVE THE SUPERNATURAL A CHANCE IN YOUR LIFE
Ordinary life is boring and will make you sick. A part of man (his spirit) is supernatural and must be fed as such. You can’t afford to live a life where you have everything figured out, strictly according to your means.
The good book admonishes us that our sufficiency is not of ourselves but of God. It means we are not complete on our own but only complete in Him.
Therefore we need to be connected to God in all our dealings. Allow Him to direct your path. Train yourself to hear and obey his voice. Commit to studying His word, which is able to build you up and give you access to your inheritance in Christ Jesus.
Pray and fast to sharpen your senses. Give, not out of your abundance, but even out of the little you have, for that seed will trigger uncommon harvest. Learn to tithe to amplify your antenna of expectations.
You can’t afford to operate in the realms of ordinariness. Take that step of faith now. Pursue that dream, for with God all things are possible.
BEWARE OF THE “DESERVE MATRIX”
In life there are opportunities you would come across, which you know that you are adequately qualified for and deserve, but someone less qualified in your estimation may end up getting that opportunity instead of you. There is the tendency for you to murmur and be bitter. Guard against it.
There will also be opportunities you don’t deserve, yet would be given to you. In such instances, don’t give room to self doubt or inferiority complex, for you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you.
Lastly you would also get opportunities you absolutely deserve and are capable of handling. Make sure you don’t give room to pride and self conceit, touting how you prepared and worked hard for that opportunity.
Otherwise, you may say in your heart, ‘My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.’ “But you shall remember the LORD your God, for it is He who is giving you power to make wealth that He may confirm His covenant which He swore to your fathers, as it is this day. –Deuteronomy 8:17-18
Enjoy this festive season and remember that Christ is the reason for the season
Part 2 of this blog can be found via this link: https://rolandoforispeaks.wordpress.com/2016/12/31/reflections-lessons-of-2016-part-2/
From the desk of ROL.