Live on sire… 1

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Dear dad,

It would have been your birthday today

You would have been another year older today

Seasons and events this year called for your presence

Experiences this year met wisdom from your lessons and your wisdom prevailed

Our memories are filled with you

Our thoughts are full of you

Our testimony of you never stops

The example you set is ever so followed today

You live on in our hearts

Rest on sire…

Maxx’

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30 lessons and more from my 30 years

It was my 30th birthday yesterday and for some reason I cannot explain I feel different. It’s not easy to clock 30 really. I do realise how blessed I am to reach this milestone in life and to be all that I am today.

Let me use this medium to once again extend my thanks to all who made my day special in some kind of way. Thank you so much.

Here are a few things I thought to share on what I have learnt in the last 3 decades. Be blessed.

1. God is the truest of everything. Father, friend, saviour, helper, name it! Nothing is as true as God.

2. Life without a personal relationship with God is meaningless, empty and senseless.

3. Wisdom is central to a happy life. If you want to be happy start by looking for wisdom rather than happiness. After you find wisdom you will find happiness.

4. Things are as they are regardless of my opinions or anyone else’s opinions.

5. Most of life’s lessons are not taught by anyone. They are learned from personal experience. Maintaining a good attitude is necessary for learning.

6. Pain is necessary for growth. And pain is sometimes the result of our choices.

7. Regret is an absolute waste of time.

8. Everything happens for a reason.

9. There is a time and season for everything. It’s no use living in the past or in the future and missing out on the present. Live every moment.

10. Each situation is to be treated with its own set of facts no matter how similar it may be to a past situation.

11. Maturity is not defined by age but by experiences and choices and what lessons one learns from each experience.

12. There are things you cannot do anything about. Accept this and live in peace.

13. There is no unit like family. Family loves you and looks out for you yet judges you at the same time. You cannot change this.

14. Family may intend to always be there for you but may not be able to. Love them anyway.

15. A man’s wisdom is assessed by his family members depending on the type of woman he intends to marry or marries.

16. Women are particular about personal and financial security. They do not thrive in lack of either or both. They were created this way. They are not to be judged for it.

17. The woman is smarter than the man and is particularly equipped to bring out the best planted deep within the man. Man needs woman and woman needs man. Both are a team. No one is superior.

18. All human beings are one together with the entire universe. The best results in life are attained through unity. Where there is togetherness there is far much more prosperity. Look out for the progress of others.

19. Selfishness is a major cause of human problems.

20. Things that happen are hardly ever about you and me. We should get over ourselves more and more.

21. Peace is everything. Personal peace, communal peace, national peace, etc. Without peace we have nothing.

22. Personal peace comes at a cost. We may look stupid to most people, but the most peaceful people do or bear whatever they have to to keep their peace.

23. Things will not always go my way. This is a fact I have to live with. Accept it, embrace it, enjoy life regardless. Life is not about me.

24. Changes will take place in my mind, spirit and body. Some I may not like, and some I may like. Accept this fact and live with it in peace.

25. People will look up to me whether I choose it or not, whether I want them to or not. It is how it is. I owe it to myself and to those around me to do right. Most of all I owe it to God who puts me in this exalted position.

26. My contribution to the betterment of mankind matters a lot no matter how seemingly little my contribution. If I do not contribute my little someone somewhere somehow will suffer for my omission.

27. People will say things about me, good and bad things. What I know and believe about myself is what matters most.

28. I peg my own value. How I present myself is how I am taken by others. If I do not peg my value people will do so for me and I will then surely be undervalued.

29. Society is a big lie. The mindset of society is sick. Society needs help yet it appears strong and appears to decide what you and me should do. Dare to dump societal values and trends and seek truth. God is truth, not society.

30. Everyone cannot excel at the same type of test. We are all gifted differently and should each be tested according to our unique strengths.

31. No one has it all together. We all have individual strengths and weaknesses. We complement each other. This is divine design.

32. As we progress in life we will seemingly have less and less time.

33. Balance is everything to success. Life is made up of several pieces which only make sense put together. Family, health, play, work, money, rest, holiday, sleep, worship, service, are all to be put together for a full life. An excess of one or two isn’t happiness. True happiness is found in balance.

34. God is real and He cares about you and me more than He cares about anything.

35. There is no service to God outside of service to mankind. To serve God you must serve man for His sake.

36. Human beings are like sheep: stupid. Love your neighbour regardless and when he/she fails you forgive them. They are human. Humans fail. God forgives you yet you fail.

37. Forgiveness is cheap. It may seem more expensive than bitterness but ultimately it is much cheaper.

38. The smallest action beats the greatest intention.

39. Timing is everything. Timing and wisdom are sisters with interlocked arms.

40. Time waits for no man. Do what you have to when you have to.

41. Depression is real even to an African. Mental, emotional, psychological, spiritual and physiological health all exist. We Africans tend to focus on the physiological and disregard people who complain of sickness in the other areas as being “weak”.

42. Time spent learning anything is never wasted.

43. Crying is very ok. So is soliloquy. I am not “weak” or ‘not cool” or “womanly” as a man because I cry or speak to myself. Crying is a form of expression. Soliloquy is a reinforcer of dreams and visions.

44. Everyone is different in his own way. Your opinion is not law and ultimately it doesn’t even matter in the scheme of things. Accept this and retain your unsolicited opinion. Take no offence if I do not heed your advice.

45. Whatever is planted is harvested. If you plant honour you will harvest honour. If you plant dishonour you will harvest dishonour.

46. The lessons my parents taught me were very necessary. The things they said to me were true. I will teach them to my children.

47. A father’s words and actions live with his sons through life. I remember today things my father spoke to me as a little boy. I will speak to my sons likewise.

48. Life is great. In everything that happens there is always still some room for thanksgiving.

49. It is never too late to accomplish a dream. Where there is a will there is a way.

50. I am complex and may never fully understand myself. I am to accept this peacefully.

51. Pride is foolishness on display. None of us has any reason whatsoever to be proud. All we have and are were given to us by someone who has it all yet He is not proud. He alone has every right to be proud.

52. Ignorance is a deadly disease. It is to be feared above poverty.

53. What happens in a man’s life first happens in his mind. The mind is powerful beyond description.

54. Everyday is a blank gift. I am to fill my day with what I prefer. Where I am not able to because of busyness, I am to be thankful still.

55. My happiness is solely my responsibility. I am to look to no other for this.

56. All wealth of everything resides in God. His greatness and versatility are beyond any description we can ever attempt.

Love,

Maxx’

I run to you

I run to you

When i am lost at sea and empty

I run to you

When I am at the end of my world

I run to you

When the cup of my soul is empty and needs a refill

I run to you

When it is night and all hope is lost

I run to you

When to no else I can turn

I run to you

As the child that I am

I run to you

When I need your shade to cover me

I run to you

When I am bruised and battered on every side

I run to you

When I need a rock upon which to cast my care

I run to you

When I need a friend

When it is all said and done,

I run to you.

Letter to my sister (how do I know him?)

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Hello sister.

It is sad that we did not have all the time we needed to talk when we last saw. I hoped to write you what time did not permit me to tell you.

You said you liked this guy you met recently. You didn’t tell me exactly why though I could see it in your eyes that you really did l like him.

You asked me what you should do about your liking him. You said you didn’t mind having sex with him even though you hadn’t yet. You said you had promised him that you would.

You said you knew I would tell you the truth and that is why you were asking me. You wanted to hear what I had to say. Well here it is my dear sister:

I love you. I’ll start from that fact. You know this don’t you?

God loves you far much more than I do. I’m sure you know this too.

Now, when I look at you, I see my sister. I see my friend. I see the beautiful woman that you are. I see the little girl who goes around all grown up and adult. I see the girl who wants to be loved. Understood. Played with. Prayed with. Prayed for.  Treasured. Nurtured. Unhurt. Treated as the royal that she is.

You may not see her like I do but she’s in there within you, seeking expression everyday.

You like this guy. I understand. But does he like you?
When he looks at you what does he see? What thoughts go through his mind? Does he think he can live without you? Does he see a queen or does he see a number added to his sexual conquests and bloated misguided ego?

My sister, what you should do about liking him is nothing. Yes. Nothing. It is not in your place to do anything. I’ll tell you why.

You know God loves you and wants the best for you don’t you? Good.

God made a man, the man God intends for you to help and spend your life with. God made this man and gave him an assignment. A vision. A destiny.

I need for you to first understand that it is not about you. It is not about being hooked or married. It is not about your pleasure or happiness. It is about God’s pleasure.

This man has to first connect to God, find his vision and assignment, and get busy with it. It is between him and his God. He is to be grounded in God. Soaked in God’s presence. Adding value to humanity. Having a job or career or vocation. Mature. Having the knowledge of and a personal relationship with God. Protective of His family. Supportive and caring for his family. A man after God’s heart. Daily chasing the things of God. Focused on giving God pleasure.

You want to ask if such a man exists. Yes he does. He is not a good man. He is a God man.

This man cares about people. He has a heart that has been broken for God. His life is centred around God. He prays. He is focused. He asks God for direction. He trusts God. He does not do anything that is worthless to his vision. Needless to say he is self-controlled. He commands his world. He commands his body. He does not sleep around. He does not even sleep with any. He keeps his body for His bride. He respects her whom he hasn’t met yet.

My sister, this man may not have met you yet but I’m sure he’s praying for you. Praying to meet you. Wondering what you look like. Wondering how you smile. Wondering what makes you mad. He’s not worrying about whether you are good in bed.he’s not worrying about whether you can cook or clean. He’s not worrying about what he can get from you. He’s just grateful for the gift of loving you. Grateful to be the one you say yes to.

My dear sister, I am not painting pictures or fantasizing. This man is out there.

God has planned for you that you will help this man to fulfil his God-given assignment. This is where you come in. Not before. Your being hooked to him is not about your pleasure or his. It is about God’s purpose and pleasure. You will have your pleasure quite alright. But your pleasure is a by-product of pleasing God. You just do not please God and not get rewarded. Nah. He doesn’t work that way! 🙂

Now when your God man comes, will you know? Yes you will.

He will chase after you. He will not rest until he does all he has to do to take you home as his bride. He will seek to bring out the best in you. He won’t keep you guessing. He won’t be after your body. He won’t be about taking from you. He will give to you.He will treat you with love. He will awaken the little girl in you. He will nurture the woman in you till you shine your brightest. He will take you closer to God. Yes. You will know it’s him.

Because your heart will tell you. Your heart and his heart will speak to each other in unbelievable ways. You will not be ashamed. You will know that God loves you and has planned the best for you before you were born.

This man will woo you. He will have conversations with you. He will stimulate your intellect. He will stimulate your spirit. He will bring out your deepest depths. Your most beautiful parts. He will wake you up inside. You will find it hard to think of life without him.

He is not an outward-appearance-only man. He does not care for physical beauty alone. He cares that you are beautiful inside first and that your beauty radiates outwards. He sees with both his eyes and his heart. What’s more, he hears the voice of God. He is a friend of God. God is jealous for him. He is led by God’s Spirit. If God does not tell him you are his he won’t tell you you are his either. If God tells him you are his but to wait he will obey and wait.

This is a man you want. This is a man you need.

For the guys/boys you like, I do not know about them.

But, sister, I believe you should wait. Just wait for your man. It appears time is going but who said so?  Who owns time? I believe you know who.

The man, the real man, the God man, comes to his bride. He finds his bride. She does not find him.

You have no such responsibility. “He who finds a wife finds a good thing”. We are in the 21st century and “times have changed”. This is granted. But my dear, God has not changed. He will never change. Neither will His word or His standard.

I wish I could tell you this in fewer words. I’m glad you get the message though.

All you have to do is wait. And while you wait you burrow your way deeper and deeper into God’s bosom. Hide so deep in there that only God’s man can find you. Hide so deep in there that his heart will find you before his eyes see you.

There is nothing to look for outside of God’s bosom. Stay in there. Be useful to God. Be useful to others.Find yourself. Develop yourself. Pamper your spirit and your body. Make them ready for your man. Stop giving gifts that should be reserved for him indiscriminately to strangers and thieves.

Honour your God with your body, mind, soul and spirit.

And please respect your man by keeping what is his for him. Giving yourself to the unworthy is gross disrespect to your man. I believe you know this but just in case you do not, I’m telling you.

You have to go now. I’ll be in touch.

Your brother.

Maxx’

This issue of waiting…

It never goes away!

Here I was, on a Friday evening with an impending early flight booked for Saturday morning. I had laboured all day and met all my deadlines (well maybe except one. Or two). My dear computer had laboured with me all day long faithfully. I believe you would wonder with me, why then in the evening, with just one report to forward to my superiors and thereafter gleefully call it a day, my dear computer would suddenly freeze me out and keep me glued to my desk for at least another hour and a half while Friday evening gleefully and speedily metamorphosed into Friday night!  You can imagine my irritation!

Try all I could it would not respond. Forced shutdowns and restarts. Nothing. I threw up my hands in despair and decided to take a short walk.

Just as I was about returning to the struggle it dawned on me that I had to have been tied there to my desk for that time for a purpose. A purpose I may never know. I asked myself “do you know what God has used this “annoying” computer to save you from?”

From that moment on I had peace and proceeded with the report with thanks. I got home much later than I intended but I was safe and thankful.

Come Saturday morning. All was set. The flight was in motion. Then it was announced that we had to just sit at the runway for 45 minutes as a dignitary was travelling hence we had to wait for their takeoff.

I’ll just say the rest of the same Saturday was spent waiting. For this and for that. Until I got a call from an intended host thanking God that I was delayed somewhere without which delay I would have ended up in a 3 hour traffic jam hungry, tired and angry!

Imagine how thankful I was after that call! I was even thankful that at least I had found out the reason for at least one of the delays!

Now waiting is not easy. It has never been. It may never be. But it is highly important for us to slow down sometimes in the heat of our anger and ask ourselves what reasons we could actually be delayed for. These are things we just never know. But one thing is sure: we have a loving Father who watches our every step and keeps us.

We are told in Romans 8:28 that all things work together for good for those who love God and are called according to His purpose. Bearing this in mind, with the fact that “the steps of the righteous are ordered by the Lord”, why do we get so worked up about delays?

God always has a plan. Of this we should be sure. Let us give thanks to Him even when we may not understand what He is doing. He has our backs hence we need not worry or fret. Yes, time wasted or lost is painful. But is He not the owner of time? If He uses time for one thing to save us from another, is He not faithful to help us recover the “lost” time in another way?

And is the time with which we are saved from danger really “wasted”? What if we waste 2 hours and are thereby prevented from wasting 6 months on a hospital bed?

What are you waiting for? Know that if you are walking in God’s will He will surely come through for you.

In everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18.

Wait with grace. Wait with patience. Wait with joy.

God bless you.

Maxx’

The glean…

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We see her everyday.
She has different faces.
She wears different clothes. She wears different hairdos.
Sometimes she drives. Sometimes she walks.  Sometimes she takes the bus.
She goes everywhere. There is no place where she is not seen.
She is hardworking.
Sometimes she jogs past. Sometimes she drives past. Sometimes it is at the market we see. Or at church or at the movies.
She is everywhere. If you look around you you will see her too.

There is something in her eyes.
It is not seen by everyone. It is only seen by the trained eye.

It is hidden by her pretty hairdo.
It is hidden by her manicured nails and fancy clothes.
It is hidden by her job and bank balance and stellar achievements.
It is hidden by the brands and models of the cars she drives.
It is hidden by her fancy jewelry.
It is hidden by the man whose arm she desperately clutches whenever they are seen together.

It is a question…
It is pain…real pain…
It is uncertainty…

She makes so much effort to conceal it.
She goes to great lengths to look happy.
Hard as she tries the glean is hardly ever concealed.

She tells herself, “If this were that it would all be fine”.
Then, “if I had that all this would be fine”.
Then again, “if only I get the man of my dreams…”
“If only this man will behave in this and this and that way…”
“If only I hadn’t done this or if I had done that differently…”

She is unhappy.
She searches her heart and mind for solutions.
She tasks her knowledge and experience and general wisdom.
She prays.
No answers to her real questions are found.

She dresses her pain up.
She gets involved in activities and distractions to mask it.
She weighs her life alongside her perceptions and observations of the lives of others like her.
Sometimes she feels better other times she feels worse.

She examines her dreams and goals…they are noble enough.
The glean in her eyes remain…

“What am I to do to be truly happy?”
“Why am I here?”
“Is there anything to life beyond the perpetual hustle and bustle and struggles and all the expectations placed on me both by others and myself?”
“Is it all worth it?”
“What is my life truly about?”

She can not talk to anyone about how she truly feels. She does not think they will understand. She just may be adjudged ungrateful seeing she appears to be very well off compared to most.

She is in pain….
Her eyes tell the tale…
Amidst her pleasant demeanour and gay apparel, is a pain so severe…

To the common eye she is a beautiful and composed woman…

To the trained vulture male she is another vulnerable flower to be plucked and thereafter discarded…

To the eyes that look beneath, she is a beautiful woman in pain…in need of hope…in need of true love…

To one, she is a beautiful daughter in need of rest…

“Will she come home? If she will but come home…”

Maxx’

Whose time?

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I see him around a lot.

I see him around the office and on the street. I see him at meetings and at parties
He seems to always have one question for me. Me me me.
I do not see him asking anyone else. I do not want to believe I am the only one he ever asks.

Can we see and talk about all things else for once at least?

When he asks me I tell him I am waiting for the right time.

He believes that he knows that it is already the right time. I do not agree however.

“When will it be, young man?” he queries.
“I do not know sir” says I.
“Time is running out” says he.
“No, not for me it is not”.
“What exactly are you waiting for?”
“The right time. The right place. The right things. I am not easily satisfied. Random things do not work for me. I know what I want and will easily recognise it when I see it. This is clear I hope”.
“You young men always feel so smart”.
“Oh we are not? You were once like us though, no?”
“It is time, young man”.
“No sir, it is not”.

Maxx’