Coming into my 33rd year is very special, as it marks my 20th year of walking with God, 10 years of marriage, 10 years of parenting, 10 years of being a professional and the birthing of something new – Blooming Amazons.
I will be sharing life lessons I’ve learned through the journey.
Before you begin, grab a notepad and maybe a cool drink, because this is a long but eye-opening read.
Living for the praises/ validation of men is futile
This year, as it’s a pattern with me when something new is about to be birthed in me, all Hell would let loose and most times only a few can see what I m seeing. When Blooming Amazons were about to be birthed, I had people who I taught should be excited about the new work say to me, cancel, it’s not time.
I knew I heard God, so I went ahead, not allowing the opinion of anyone to deter me. At the end of our first conference in June, I had a few of them (who were Humble enough) say to me, you really heard God, after the conference, we are convinced.
So I say to myself, what if I succumbed to all the pressures?
Own your Journey as it is part of your process
EVERYTHING we go through in life( The Good, Bad and Ugly) is all part of our becoming and it’s the enemy’s plan to keep us down with shame. God will never want us to be ashamed irrespective of where we have been.
He’s more interested in where we are now and where we will spend eternity… We should find strength in our journey and own our story without prejudice, someone out there will draw strength from your journey.
Always remember you are only a vessel
When God does His work through us, there’s the temptation that people would start to put us on a pedestal of worship(very dangerous), we have to constantly remind them, it is God who is doing His work and we are only vessels, and He alone should take all the glory.
If we are not deliberate about this, pride will set in (and it’s usually subtle). God resists the proud, the fear of being resisted by God alone should keep us humble.
[bctt tweet=”Everything we go through in life – The Good, Bad and Ugly is all part of our becoming – @tolulopetaj” username=”SheLeadsAfrica”]
Some things never grow old
These days when you say to people lets pray about this, it sounds like a cliché, like the normal thing Christians say, but I tell you the truth, Prayer changes things.
Prayer is us admitting to God that we are limited and need His intervention in a particular situation. It’s a show of surrender and Humility. His answer may not come how we many it or when we want it, but He certainly answers.
With all the feminism out there and being taken overboard, it assumes that submission is out-dated. I see submission as admitting that the power I have comes through me and not from me, I believe God knows the strength of a woman and if left unchecked can create chaos and that’s why He has commanded us to submit.
Submission is more than an admonishing, it’s a command.
So, I”m married to this amazing gentleman who allows me to have my way a lot of times, but when He puts his foot down, I know I have to submit, it might not be easy on the flesh, but every time I submit to my Husband, I notice He honors me more and He is spurred to do more for me.
Irrespective of what I do outside of my Home, once I get to ABCVille,( How we like to call our Home), I’m first Babatunde’s wife before anything else. Being submissive isn’t the same as being subservient.
I’m a believer in if you belong to a place, then give it your loyalty, if I start to doubt the integrity of a place I belong to, I would rather move on than to be two-faced.
I still don’t know how people are able to sleep at night after hailing someone who they just cursed behind their back. (lol.one of the first questions I will ask God when we get to heaven).
God is a loving Father
A lot of us have this fearful, awfull picture of God, perhaps painted to us as children from Sunday school days, but it’s not true about Him, we should fear God in reverence, but not an awful kind of fear. God isn’t like the Nigerian traffic police (lastma) lol, hiding and just waiting for us to fail so He can hit us with His rod of correction of sickness, diseases or crisis…
Rather, He loves us with an everlasting, I like to call it a ‘reckless love’. The Bible makes us know He doesn’t want the sinner to perish, it is never His will for anyone to perish, and it is never God who puts crises on people, all good and perfect gifts come from Him and its impossible for Him to do evil.
[bctt tweet=”Next time you find yourself “falling”, remember, God’s love is waiting with hands open wide to receive you back – @tolulopetaj” username=”SheLeadsAfrica”]
Feelings are a bad master but a good servant
As Christians, we can’t be ruled by our feelings, they will mislead us. We are first a spirit, then we have a soul and live in a body, Our soul is responsible for our emotions but as strong as emotions are, they are in no match to what our spirit carries. Our life should be guided by the spirit.
So Here was I, tongue-talking, demon chasing daughter of God, being attracted to some other person, of course I know to Kill that emotion because it is not leading to anywhere good. Anger, Jealousy, Fear, all these are emotions and should be put in constant check with the word of God.
Sometimes we might wake up not feeling too good, perhaps because of life challenges(being an adult can be demanding….I know), we are weighed down.
Here is my reminder to you, it’s only a feeling, it’s not who you are, it will pass.
Marriage has to be built on the right foundation
Right foundation for me will be marrying for the right reasons, being sincere about who you are from the beginning of the relationship and most important part, Having God be the center of it all.
Forever is a very long time to spend with someone, and years down in marriage, both of you will evolve, children will come or may not, careers will grow , finances, Health, in-laws, priorities, purpose, a lot will just happen and its the foundation of your marriage that will really sustain the union, we can’t really change our spouse.
No Human being can change another( God hasn’t given that power to any man), but we can ask Him who is the creator and father of our spouse to do with and in His child all He wants to.
Be sincere and open with your Children
I learned this from my mum, She is a very sacrificial mother and let my brother and me into her capabilities. Even when I was far away in school, there were just somethings I never got involved in, because I knew my mother emptied all her savings to give me the comfort I have.
I just kind of felt being of good behavior and excelling was the least I could do to honor her. Also, you earn your children’s respect when you treat your spouse well.
This a subtle life lesson we pass to our children without talking. So my children notice my Husband and I just disagreed over an issue, and as children may want to ask for favors from me which their Dad won’t approve of.
They know I won’t bend over to let them have their way. They have come to learn this, so these days, they don’t bother…
Competition and Rivalry is baseless
One of the core things the Lord has been impressing upon my heart is collaboration. We are the light of the world, but a candlestick in a world of gross darkness cant dispell much but imagine what happens when we all bring our light together, there is no darkness we can’t dispel.
Afterall, no one ever shines brighter by putting our another person’s light.
It’s Ok to admit we are limited and don’t know something
There’s the temptation of wanting to answer everyone’s questions, want to meet everyone’s need and solve every problem when we begin to have people look up to us.
While this is good, to have a serving heart, it can place too much demand on us, we should do as much as we can, but we should always have at the back of our minds that its only the Holy Spirit who can fix people and solve problems and we are in no match with him. We should always point people back to God and be sincere with our limitations.
If someone asks us a question we don’t know, its ok to say I don’t know or I’m not sure about this, can I get back to you or can I refer you to someone I feel will be in a better position to answer you correctly
[bctt tweet=”People would always have an opinion and they are entitled to it, but you should choose what advice to listen to – @tolulopetaj” username=”SheLeadsAfrica”]
Everyone God has brought our way is for a purpose and we are accountable for them
One of the ways my Husband and I have decided to give back to the society is by ensuring anyone who comes to work for us as a domestic staff leaves us better. We are committed to their growth and development.
Seriously, we can’t claim to be mentoring people outside when the ones right under our roof, that spend a lot of time with our children are not well mentored.
Not only do we mentor them but make an investment in them. Is there a possibility they won’t be grateful, Oh yes, but who and what is our motive? God!!! So it’s unto Him
There’s a reward for faithfulness
When we are in the capacity to work for others, we should do it as though it is ours. People say a lot to me now that running BLAM comes so easy for you.
How do you do it, but then, years before now, I was serving somewhere else, not having the slightest idea God would call me to start BLAM, but I did it with all my heart as though it was mine, not only did God reward my faithfulness.
I was also unknowingly developing myself for my own purpose, so now it appears so easy as I have developed my root downwards.
Courage isn’t the absence of Fear, but not being crippled by the fear.
I remember our first conference, I was so afraid like visibly afraid, if you looked at me, you literally could see me trembling, but I didn’t let that stop me, I know fear is only a feeling, I heard God clearly about the conference, so what I felt really didn’t matter.
Fulfilling a purpose isn’t for the faint-hearted
Ask anyone doing great in any sector, they will tell you the same thing. Someone told me she was crying because some people she thought should support her vision arent doing so.
I simply told her, welcome to the club, its ok to cry, but one of the beauties of being a woman is we can cry this moment, and the next go to the washroom and slay it up again.
Usually, I would recommend anyone starting or doing a great work to confess Ephesians 3:16 (NLT) I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources He will empower you with inner strength through His Spirit.
We need a lot of inner strength for the journey.
People would always have an opinion and they are entitled to it, but what they aren’t entitled to be forcing it on you.
You also owe yourself not being moved by the opinion of people, I have observed that people’s opinions are ever changing, since the days of Jesus, today Hosanna, tomorrow crucify!
Seek Counsel, ask for advice, but ultimately, hear God.
I once heard of an ex-governor who when He wanted to run for governorship sort the counsel of one His mentors, a big name in the Christian faith in our nation, and the person told him not to run as he won’t win, but He was convinced God spoke to Him.
He ran and won the elections and even did a second term. I’ve had this play out in my lifetime and time again. This doesn’t make the man of God a liar, it only means that concerning the issues of our destiny, it is ONLY the holy spirit’s guide that is 100 percent accurate.
Your spouse isn’t your enemy
Many times the enemy tries to make our spouse look like our enemy, but we know better.
His aims are not far-fetched, to steal, kill and ultimately destroy. So when dealing with issues, we should always have this at the back of our minds.
[bctt tweet=”Whats important is that we don’t measure our own success or be put under pressure by what we see on social media – @tolulopetaj” username=”SheLeadsAfrica”]
Preparation time is never wasted time
So you sense you are being called to a certain trade or profession, rather than launching out untrained, take time out to go prepare, go watch someone do it.
That way your roots grow downwards, so even though no one is seeing the tree itself yet, you have developed a solid foundation and when you start out and the storms and challenges of life flood in, you are able to stand.
Social Media is a very good tool
Like most of the work we do with BLAM is via social media, that being said, it can also be very misleading. Everyone puts their best foot forward and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.
Whats important is we don’t measure our own success or be put under pressure by what we see on social media. Not all that glitter is gold
It’s Ok to laugh at yourself
I remember a night I was in Bible school and because of my tight schedules lately, I’ve been going on wigs more to help me cut down on salon times this day, off my wig went in the middle of class.
Honestly, I still can’t explain what made it fall off, but I just picked it up and wore it back nicely, rather than being thoroughly embarrassed. Life isn’t that serious
Its ok to ask for help
When we were having our conference in June, we sent out letters for support which we got a lot of, I can’t imagine if we tried to muscle it all alone. God will always send us people who would help us.
Put structures in place that make your life easier
With all the many roles that I play, while in bible school, I had to invest in getting a very good home tutor for my children, that is something I did myself, but I wasn’t going to be available to do it and I didn’t want their academics to suffer for it, so I had to pay the price.
I also had to get an extra hand to help out with domestic chores. Women like to be perceived as being super, but you can only shine when your sanity is intact.
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