A Christmas Change

christmas-pic

We were taught, “Whenever you don’t feel like doing something, then go ahead and do it. For your feelings are the least thing you could ever trust.”

The beautiful thing about the world we inhabit is, there’s no absolute truth in this world. There’s my truth, your truth, and the truth.

The truth doesn’t change. Everything else does.

For this reason, I decided to trust my feeling the past two weeks. Not that I really had limitless options.

For fifteen days, I haven’t posted on my blog, my longest streak since I owned one. It was my intention to communicate with you readers at least twice between then and Christmas. On my Facebook wall, there’s no Christmas message. Not on any of my social media account.

How this started?

The week before last, the house was full. Christmas was waving ten fingers at us, saying, “I’m here, and that means you’ve gotta slow. Gotta slow down, gotta slow down.” I did not heed. Of course, I had things to do. And I wasn’t willing to get into the mood.

Twelve days ago, I still had a whole lot to catch up to. Writing, writing, preparing for changes, New Year resolutions, books to read, stories to share online, things to learn…

Ten days ago, something changed. James Scott Bell wrote in Plot and Structure, “There’s a door through which your protagonist must pass, almost always reluctantly. This door should lead to a change.” But it’s reluctant.

The best changes come after we’ve been pressed on every side. Same was mine. Passing through that doorway slammed a pause on everything. Suddenly, I wasn’t writing again. I wasn’t thinking of platform. I wasn’t interested in reading books. I just wanted to curl in the fetal position and let the tears roll.

And then, the inevitable frustration seeped in. It didn’t come like a truckload. It began as introspection, then concern, then panic, and finally fear. But then, I didn’t cuss.

Thanks be to God for that. It could have gotten much worse. I could have grown angry. I could have allowed the ill feelings grow.

I started to forget the essence of everything, focused on the present. I was bothered others were making progress. I was afraid the days I couldn’t work would greatly shape the future. I was bothered things weren’t running along the path I would. There was a willingness to trade joy for happiness, contentment for a feeling of satisfaction.

I wondered if anyone would still visit my blog, if my Instagram account would now be banned (as if it were possible), if… ifs, ifs, ifs.

But.

Christmas isn’t about ifs. It isn’t about the things we do or do not. Christmas is remembering the Word became flesh, giving us power to be the sons of God, translating we who sat in darkness into light-givers. I consciously told myself, “I’m not worried about the things past or the things coming. I give thanks for the present, for the things done.”

And.

I am better now. Yes, I still haven’t written. Social media is playing background. Christmas is come and gone. The change remains though.

It isn’t about the turkey, or the dancing lights, or the deadlines. It is about reminding ourselves of who we are, as we believe.

A son and a daughter to our Father.

P.S: Thank you for staying here through 2016. For reading and liking and sharing.

2017 is four days away. I’m not a regular New Year resolutions setter. What about you? What do you hope to begin next year?

 

Preparation – The Irremovable Factor

​The simplest of things go a long way to affect futures. And funny, they don’t happen in seconds. They take years. Years to develop. Years to be hemmed and hawed and straightened till perfection.

Often, the people through which these simple things occur are far from perfect. They’ve been taught humility and discipline, perseverance and understanding, patience and honesty, yet they still show the other side of man.

Is there such a thing as the other side of man? You bet.

The childish Christian I am, I often expected success to be immediate, or at most, pushed ahead for a year, two max. Given, I’d read stories of Joseph and David and Moses. I knew Joseph dreamed at seventeen, became prime minister at thirty. I knew Dave slumped the giant at a similar age, but had to fight wars and wiggle under caves before being crowned king at…

Thirty.

Moses was the worst of the lot. Forty years of thorough demands. Even with this, he couldn’t hold back from spilling fire (not literally) when the fickle Israelites provoked this sage.

Welcome to the New Era. Or Testament. The disciples went with Jesus for three and a half years, receiving sermons that weren’t just lengthy but were truckloads slamming against the walls of their heart.

They were feeble when time came to give out.

But then, there was Paul. Paul didn’t experience the travails of the sage, or the parables of Pete.

He just went blind for three days, and then he was preaching.

Oh. Did I say just? You don’t just go blind, man. Without sight for three days. Really, there are so many things humans cannot perfectly comprehend until they take a sip of the experience. Here’s how to know.

Close your left eye. Walk to the nearest entrance. Now, shut tight your better eye – or right – and step out. Yeah, do it. March on with both eyes closed. Try crossing the four-lane highway or ordering decaf. Man your vehicle with eyes taped, or attempt hugging a loved one.

It’s terrible. A terrible situation. In fact, the only thing more terrible than been maimed is losing one’s soul, as Jesus said. 

So, there appeared to be only two options for me. Either the lengthy hemming that’s necessary for awesome expeditions, or the quick frightening experience that positions for exploits. Which would I choose?

I don’t know. Earlier today, I read a blog discussing preparation and the writer. It goes beyond the art of weaving stories. All things require preparation.

Ministering to a group of twenties? Prepare. Intend to pen a bestseller? Prepare. Want to hear from God and live as a son to The Father? Prepare. Interested in learning a new language? Prepare.

There’s no specific length. There’s no specific how.

But the place of preparation is irremovable. In spirit, in soul, in body.

This Monday…

This Monday, I awoke knowing I should blog. I could feel the urge to share a story on this platform, but I did not know what to write. Even a more sorry case, there was no means to write. And perhaps the most pitiful of all, I was battling underestimation.

Having read thousands of words, and penned a fair share of the lot, I wondered if my stories were all hogwash, junk letters that would suit the trashcan better. I felt others were made to write, I, to read.

But then…

This Monday, I read a novel. It’s titled Renegade, the third book in the Lost Book series. Or perhaps, one of the fifteen novels that are The Book Of Chronicles, scribbled by Ted Dekker. He’s my favorite novelist, and perhaps, I should write like him.

This Monday, I realized we all have stories. Ted Dekker said of The Book Of Chronicles, “If you were made to read these stories, maybe I was made to write them.” I agree. No one can write a story the way you would, and I’m not saying the sleekness or the knotting of metaphors.

Story, the essence. Stories that breathe and give life.

This Monday, I saw God. Not the man in white flowing garment with beards sweeping the streets clean. Not the fiery One who no man can behold. Not the lion or the lamb. They are all dimensions of God. I saw God as I would see God. In the beauty of nature.

This Monday, brother came home. His legs are unstable at home as a chameleon in a singular skin. Always changing, chameleon. Always moving, brother. But he’s home. And the extra layer of cream is this – he just came from a writing event. I’m happy. I’m still trailing him in the hours spent writing.

This Monday, I decided to blog just as the second hand ticked a quarter to eight pm.

This Monday, I’m saying, Thank you. Thank you for always reading my blog.

This Monday, that’s all.

Blind With Eyes

The past twenty days, I committed to an assignment that demanded a lot of sacrifices, blogging even. So now, with eyes heavy as dumbbells, having won the assignment, I sat to scribble a short story.

Kindly read along, and of course, forgive the covert absence.

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“Hello…”

The wind picked up my call, turned it in a rising turbine, and smashed against the trees bordering both sides of the path.

path-in-the-woods

I shielded my eyes and called again. Nothing. Nothing but the wind rolling and my heart slamming into the ribcages. One step forward.

“Hello.”

“Over here.”

Continue reading “Blind With Eyes”