My 20’s were very eventful and, looking back, I now realize formed the backdrop to what would unfold as my purpose and destiny. I found myself in very exciting growth seasons (I can now call them that having seen what they produced in me) wrapped in challenging and sometimes outright crazy situations that often left me quite confused and wondered at every point what on earth was going on with my life. I just couldn’t seem to “get it together” no matter what I tried. Coming from my secondary school years, it felt like I had been thrown out of a comfortable cocoon into a huge storm and could barely make out the next step. But looking back now, am so for it all, not leaving any event out (and I say this with the deepest of sincerity) because it caused me to come alive, to the reality of the existence of God. Coz you see, what happened back in Eden was very traumatic to the human race. The part of us that could relate and live in the glory of God died, which left us to a ‘barely surviving’ existence which was never God’s intention. From that time on, God instituted a plan to bring us back to himself which culminated in Jesus dying on the cross which then gave us access to God’s presence like we never had before. The glory of God was so serious that the priest in the olden days would go into the holy of holies with a bell and rope tied to his ankle, so that just in case he had entered not having followed the full cleansing ritual that was required and he appeared before God blemished with sin, he would immediately be struck and die. So if he had taken a long time, by people outside the temple pulling the rope, he would shake his leg so the bell could tinker to indicate that he was still alive.
All that, Jesus handled through his blood which allowed anyone who called on his name, and thus, covered by his blood to enter in God’s presence without the fear of death. So then, receiving the grace to enter into his presence and actually entering his presence are not always one and the same thing. Often times, we do not draw close to God as we should maybe because of how we think relating to God should be, or laziness, business, other pursuits that take up your time (sometimes even wastes it) or even a lack of knowledge of what it means to be drawn into the presence of God and what that will then produce in our lives. So I’ve come to realise that the challenges that God allows for us to go through more often than not are an invitations to draw into His presence when you realize that this situation can only be sorted out by God because all that you’ve tried hasn’t worked. The more we then call on God, the more we know Him and without even realizing it, He begins to introduce you to yourself as He created you. Often times, that person seems so far out of reach that you don’t see how you, as you are, can be all that He says you can be. So challenges are often ‘burning bush’ invitations from God to catch your attention, turn to him for help, and in so doing He then introduces you to you (as He knew you when He formed you in your mother’s womb). So… a few lessons from my glorious 20’s J:
- Always look for God’s perspective in every situation because his perspective of your situation and the message of your situation can be as different as light is from day and the ultimate outcome of it is crucially dependent on what your view is, not God’s and not any other person but yours.
- And when you get His perspective, remember to write it down and keep looking at it because often times the life around is a reflection of our inner thought life, so often times once we change our outlook ,having internalized God’s perspective, our circumstances then begin to change.
- There is more to your life than meets the eye, you were meant for the very glory of God to inhabit your life and because of it, your life then becomes extraordinary.
- Starting out on your journey for the very life God intended for you to live will take you on many detours and seemingly unnecessary and unrelated events that begin to all be coined together after all the lessons have been satisfied and you are certified ready for the next level.
- The gem is in the process and not the destination so embrace the journey, especially the challenges, they give you a wisdom for your next level which you would never have had had it not been for those very situations.
- Don’t launch yourself out when you’re not ready, no matter the pressure. You’ll only be elongating the process unnecessarily and remember God has no pressure announcing you to the world so if your efforts in being out there to be seen, heard or noticed are seeming like hard work and cannot be sustained with either time, money and most importantly character, it is more likely that you are not there yet because when God says you are ready, He has no issue announcing you and bringing you everything and everyone you need to support you at your next level. The bill is on Him and not on you.
- The process often takes you to the ‘backbench’of life where you will seem insignificant and unimportant but embrace that time alone with God, coz gold is not formed out in the open for all to see, it is made in a dark, fiery furnace and presented for display once all the debris has been removed.
- Stay in the presence of God through consistent prayer and worship, His presence is the material needed to burn the çhaff from off of you
- After all regarding God, is said and done, work hard, be faithful in all you do, even the smallest unimportant details because the character you so badly need for the next level is built in the seemingly unimportant things you have to do.
- Recognise and explore all your talents, even those that do not seem to be related to your main career choice, once developed, they all have a way coming together very nicely.
- Talent alone is hardly anything if not coupled with hardwork, consistency, and character. So make sure to go beyond talking the talk and actually doing something, no matter how small towards the realization of your dreams
- Yearly goals not broken down to every day activity will forever remain on each year’s new year resolutions’
- In seeing the bigger picture, take out time to relax, take care of yourself, and enjoy life. Looking back at a storm you’ve come out of will make you realize ‘this too shall pass’
- Take care to not let anyone speak anything anyhow into your life, words have power and you want the narrative of your own inner words to match that which God has said and keeps saying about your life, not that of people that insist on keeping a sadistic view of you.
- Forgive others for what you felt was wrongly done to you, and forgive yourself for mistakes you have made that may have cost you much and wrong you may have done to others, the fact that you still have breath in you and you have seen this day is a chance to rewrite your story
- What you give out always has a way of coming back to you, so make sure you give out what you want to come back to you.
- Who you surround yourself will determine how far you go in life.
- Learn the trick of being content with what you have but always remembering that your life is meant to go from glory to glory so there is more at the next turn. This keeps your heart at ease but excited about your next level.
- ‘faking it till you make it’’ will keep you from making it because both require resources in time, money and energy so it can only be one or the other
- In the present fast paced world, know your lane, stay in your lane and own your lane. It’s a progressive thing