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Will the tears ever stop? Within 24 hours I have learnt so much about the frailty of life and time. It’s all just breath, vapour and shadows.
Chris Ero, my love, no one understands my pain. I try to tell them. I try to explain why I can’t stop crying or why I couldn’t sleep at night because I keep dreaming about death and none of it is was yours. Maybe because I don’t understand it myself.
Ours was a love story never told. I’m not sure if God was trying to protect me from the pain of loving you more and losing you now, or that you knew this was coming and you protected me from it. I must say I hate the way this happened. Maybe you shouldn’t have called me that day. Maybe you shouldn’t have tried to be my friend, you should have left it at professional work. You had to let me know you. Let me be friends with you. You had to let me love you and then you pushed me out and left this world.
Before I proceed with the tribute for the sake of #PSSeries; others in my shoe, I have to say this.
Pain; Maybe we have experienced pain in one way or another but what we can agree on is that pain finds a way to always be felt.
I thought I had it in me to endure pain; then I lost a special friend.
ellens story pix 1A line from one of my favourite book reads “that’s the thing about pain, it demands to be felt”. The pain of losing a loved one demands to be felt. It reaches into your core, pulls on everything you are and ensures you feel it, at some point you think you cannot recover from it, but like all pain, it ebbs away if you let it be, don’t ignore it because that way it won’t leave, don’t nurse it either because it won’t leave.

Feel it, embrace it, let it go through you and then you would find peace in the understanding that comes on the journey of pain.

Death; losing someone you love makes death so obvious to you. You realize that death is so final. Death can be a revealer of how much you love someone. It shows you a new truth that you can love someone more in their death than when they were alive.
It gets you remembering the little details about your time spent with that person. You desperately try to hold on to it all. So you spend time replaying your time together, reading your past conversations and reminiscing.
In the darkest hours, God brings us the best people. People who pray for us, encourage us. Give us a shoulder to cry on, and an ear to pour it all out. In my loss, I found strength in God and the people around me.  I felt people pray for me, and share their pain and death stories. Lastly, I wrote a lot, it helped me get it out there and preserve memories that am sure not even time can make them less vivid
Death of a loved one brought me pain, in pain I found understanding about death and I found my healing.
…the tribute continues
I feel desperately this need to tell the world about our story, to inform them about the uniqueness of it and how you loved me beyond your feelings, how you decided we needed to be the best people for each other. Your biggest struggle was reconciling the Chris in your head with the one who is now and you constantly told me you didn’t want to drag anyone into your life till you did that, I was a bit angry at you and told you then we should stop being friends, you told me there was no way you could let that happen, that you would try to keep away only if I ask you to stay away…. I couldn’t do that. So like a moth to the flame, we kept attempting to be friends until death took you.
Every time we spoke whether it was in-between weeks, you always told me how much you missed me and I think I only ever told you I missed you too once, oh how I wish I said what was on my mind then and now, I miss you every day Chris, and right now with you gone, my heart is broken.
I keep attempting to show the world how special you are or what we had was, I feel this desperate need to tell the world I lost a King, a Lover, to warn them that the things we sometimes take for granted would not always be there, to share our story, our infinity within the number of days.
I have known you for only a couple of months but I feel I know everything about you. Guess what Chris your set back in the past is what most people remember you for! I remember that day by the waterside when you told me about your past and growing up when you told me how you had to repeat a class because you failed math and how you headed down a destructive path till you found redemption and then your superpowers in math! Lol. You told me how passionate you are about teaching kids and I listened to you talk about the kids you teach the ones you were worried about who wasn’t doing as well as you wanted. When they had exams you acted like you had exams too! Jeez, you are so passionate about those kids and their learning.
You know what makes me smiles these days is that I know you and when I think about what you would do if you are looking down at me right now or say I laugh, then I start to cry again because I would do anything to hear you say it in person.
How do I talk about you without talking about your heart for marketing and branding, the natural guru at it, I dreamed of your marketing brand empire you know.
You see we never dated but we shared something strong and deep that most people dating either never share or take time to get, a sync of minds and heart.
I made you promise that every day when we talk you won’t go to bed without saying goodnight. You went to sleep without saying goodnight Chris. I remember when I told you to reduce how you talk to me, you tried to go a day without talking to me, let me confess it was as hard for me as it was for you, the next day early in the morning you called me and you said that was really hard to do! But hope I am happy you gave me space lol, you have given me too much space Chris I didn’t mean this type.
I have spent such a considerable time on Facebook since you died, I keep going back trying to find you in-between the pages, looking for hope, waiting for news that says “ Praise God! Chris is not dead” that God would see that this stone I feel in my chest just doesn’t look like it would go away so he brought you back so that I can show you all these things, call you a goat for leaving and then say “ oh well that’s that” you always liked my phrases.
Your heart for God, your heart for your country, your love for your family, your ability to always share in the little you have (Chris the twins that live with you why didn’t you think of them before you decided to leave this world?) Your passion for helping kids learn ( you would have stayed for them Chris), your passion for good business, your determination to use your talents to make it in life, your desire to provide for your family someday, all of that lives on my friend.
I would miss fighting with you, arguing about the little things till we are not sure what we are talking about again. Surely I would miss you picking up words and phrases I say a lot. I would miss you referring to me as the new generation and talking about how old you are (rolling my eyes). I would miss that stammer when you get too excited, would miss those high cheeks when you smile and that funny beard I kept wanting to ask you to shave off (the struggle to belong to beard gang lol it is not meant for you!). Definitely would miss your toned muscles and body in black shirts on hot days simply because you are such a show-off. I would miss teaching you about some modern things lol
I would miss reporting my day to you! Jeez you really wanted to know how my day went! You had me memorizing my days because you would insist I recount it all! I would miss you urging me to see Lagos beyond the Island; I would miss you talking about basketball and me boasting about how I would beat you at it. You promised to teach me how to swim, you promised me a date on the beach, you promised me your mums fish and onion stew with yam, you promised to teach me math for my exams, you promised you wouldn’t just leave…..
You kept asking me to watch money ball, you said you connected with the character, I never did I still haven’t, then you sent me the song and told me that sums up your feelings for me (such a weird song) but right now its my song for you, Chris hope you enjoyed this show of life, I hope you enjoyed every bit of it because since you left the seat close to mine I have wanted my money back but the show continues so am going to try to enjoy the rest of it and I would tell you all about it when we meet in heaven okay….
I’m writing this so I can move on. I would try not to look at our messages or your Facebook page anymore. I’m letting go. Good-bye Chris Ero, it was good loving you for the short time that I did. God keep you close and I pray to learn from your life, to bridge the gap between the Ellen I want to be and the one I am now, to spread love and live a life beyond me, to be larger than life, to turn my bad days to my best.
Goodbye, my friend and lover….

Written by: Ellen Ukpi

This tribute was first posted on Ellen’s blog here; http://www.perfectlyflawedlady.blogspot.com/

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Image by © Ron Nickel

Image by © Ron Nickel

This morning, a friend on my BBM (Dexter-not his real name) innocently (at least as related by him) used a picture of a lady that works out, showing all the 6 packs and figure 8, the boobs and ass. I was first going to ignore it, but I confronted him. Here is the conversation;

Tee Abraham: Stop that.

Dexter: What?

Tee Abraham: Ur DP

Dexter: AhnAhn. She is just a girl that works out na.

Dexter: Ok, lemme change it. I’m sorry=D

*then he changed it to Serena Williams picture with big ass in tight and short dress.*

Tee Abraham: Ikr =^>

Tee Abraham: I have some people I work with (porn and masturbation issues), they tell me any small thing triggers the addiction. Imagine you have such amongst your contact.

Dexter: Looooooool. Well

Dexter: This is just Serena Williams na

Ahh =( I am causing people to sin='(

Tee Abraham: I know…You might mean no harm

Tee Abraham: “But if you cause one of these little ones who trusts in me to fall into sin, it would be better for you to be thrown into the sea with a large millstone hung around your neck”. Mark 9:42

Dexter: Ahhhhhhhhhhhh. Ewooooooooo.

Tee Abraham: Na so. Na Jesus talk that one.

Dexter: A stone around my neck?Lemme remove all oooo

Tee Abraham: Abeg remove it. Put a normal/reasonable picture

Dexter: Ok

Mind you, I’m not an amebo. But I just couldn’t let this one slide. I have friends that might warn you once you use a provocative picture as your BBM’s display picture (including uploading such on Facebook or Twitter). The next time you do it again, they’ll just delete/unfriend/unfollow you straight up. Why might you ask? Well, they are just concerned about their sanity/state of mind. If the bible says Flee all appearance of evil,” and you innocently want to be an instrument of the devil to bring temptation their way, then I can say unfriending you is very well justifiable.
How often do we put a cause of stumbling before our friends or even total strangers that cross our paths – in person or even virtually on social media? Even sometimes we ourselves are these stumbling blocks.
I don’t have to state the various ways we can be victims of this, but let me state a few.

  1. What we say.

I personally believe the thought that “everyone is open to their own opinion” has caused more harm than good. Everyone just airs their opinions, not minding the consequences on those listening.
I know everyone is supposed to guard their hearts concerning what they allow to enter into their hearts/heads, but not everyone is mature enough to discern right from wrong  ; some just don’t know any better, so it pays you and your listeners better for you to shut up if you are not sure of the “status” of what you want to say.
Funny how a friend of mine thinks it’s just normal for wives to give their husbands condoms when they are travelling just because her friend says that is what his wife does. Discussion for another day.

  1. What we wear.

Yes! What we wear. Before I start this, my favourite dress on ladies dress are the short kind of dresses or flared skirts, I just love them cos one of my best features of a lady’s body is her legs. And I’m convinced that ladies that wear trousers won’t go to hell for it except they fault what this post is discussing.

Businessmen Leering at a Businesswoman --- Image by © Ken Seet/Corbis

Image by © Ken Seet

How much room does our freedom, both human freedom to choose and live, and even the freedom Christ bought for us, give us to do whatever we find pleasing to us?
It’s definitely not absolute freedom.
A good instance of this was when Paul was addressing the issue of eating meat in Romans 14. He started by saying “Accept Christians who are weak in faith and don’t argue with them about what they think is right or wrong. For instance, one person believes it is all right to eat anything. But another believer who has a sensitive conscience will eat only vegetables. Those who think it is all right to eat anything must not look down on those who won’t. And those who won’t eat certain foods must not condemn those who do, for God has accepted them. Who are you to condemn God’s servants? They are responsible to the Lord, so let him tell them whether they are right or wrong. The Lord’s power will help them do as they should. In the same way, some think one day is more holy than another day, while others think every day is alike. Each person should have a personal conviction about this matter. Romans 14:1-5 (NLT)”
He said that each person should have their own personal conviction as regards those matters as neither eating nor not eating is wrong, but he added a huge clause later on:
“Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother’s way…If your brother is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy your brother for whom Christ died. Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil. Let us, therefore, make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a man to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother to fall. Romans 14:13-16, 19-21 (NIV)
So to you, you might love extremely short or tight dresses, but you have to be mindful of people that could be plunged into lust just by merely looking at you.
A good instance is, my lady can wear a bikini if we are on a beach in America, but not Naija beaches. We aren’t just ready for such. You might wanna ask what’s the difference.  It’s the environment. Such things aren’t  big deals to whites anymore.  I’m not ruling out the fact that it will make some lust, but not on the magnitude of damage it will cause in a place like Nigeria. Besides, the scripture was pretty clear on the topic of dressing, emphasising on MODESTY.

  1. Actions in general

This is just another way to give an all-encompassing point,  as the first two points still fall under this.
We must be very conscious, I mean, super mindful of all our actions, we should put others in proper consideration of what the consequence of our actions can be. A very good instance is how some sisters lead some brothers on and vice versa. (Read more in DISCUSSION: HOW TO FRIEND ZONE EFFECTIVELY).
You are being just friends, yet you are sitting on his laps and collecting his gifts, or calling her pet names and calling her late in the night, sharing vision and selling her dreams and now, you are surprised that she sees you as more than just friends and  already planning to wed you in her head.
How good will it be if you are the reason someone becomes covetous, becomes addicted to something, takes to stealing, harbour bitterness or strife, becomes unforgiving…? The list is endless.
Every word and action of ours are like drops in the ocean. They have ripple effects, effects beyond what you could ever imagine. As much as you can’t entirely control these effects and since you can’t entirely hold yourself responsible for other people’s actions, try as much as possible not to be the cause for their stumbling (misleading, sinning…).
So, like the title of the post says, what is the reason why you can’t do whatever you want to do? Post your answer as a comment.
But for me, and since it’s #PSSeries, I believe that since almost everyone is struggling with something, you don’t want to contribute to their struggles.
Thank you for reading, I really want you to share this (You can use those social media icons below or just copy the link) because I believe this message is very important for everyone to hear. I’ll be expecting your comment.


“The Friend-Zone”, Blessing in disguise




* * *

 See you tomorrow at 12 Noon for another impactful post on life tough issues and someone’s Personal Struggle. Do you have a question or issues you’ll love to be addressed, submit it below?

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#PSSeries: What exactly is MAKING IMPACT?

Emory University nursing students volunteer in Kingston, Jamaica, helping patients cared for by the Missionaries of the Poor, a religious order in the city. --- Image by © Karen Kasmauski

Emory University nursing students volunteer in Kingston, Jamaica, helping patients cared for by the Missionaries of the Poor. — Image by © Karen Kasmauski

In today’s #PSSeries, we are considering what Making Impact really means. This resulted from a chat I had with a friend.
The crave to make impact seem to be a natural instinct, but what exactly is impact? When can we say we have made an impact? Is impact measured with a general or personalised scale?
Here is the chat; read our conversation and you’ll see the wisdom here and there.
A: Hi Tolu
Tee Abraham: Hey
A: Please I want to ask you some questions or rather engage you in a conversation
Tee Abraham: Alright. Go ahead
A: Hehe
A: What is impact?
Tee Abraham: Impact in what sense?
A: Impact in making an impact
Tee Abraham: Ok
Tee Abraham: I think it’s making a notable contribution
A: Hmmmm
Tee Abraham: Yes
Tee Abraham: By notable, not in size or magnitude, but effect
A: So it can be little yeah? As long as it’s meeting a need?
Tee Abraham: It may seem insignificant to every other person, even to d person doing it, but to d person to which it’s done, it might mean d whole world
A: Hmmmm =)
Tee Abraham: Yes
A: I like that
Tee Abraham: Funny how big things some people do doesn’t move a feather.
A: Hehe
Tee Abraham: U give a hungry little boy a bicycle…lol…ok he might sell it to buy food
A: Lol
Tee Abraham: I think majorly when what is done is relevant to a need.
A: Okay
Tee Abraham: Have you ever been in a situation where all u needed was just someone to sit down and listen to you, that’s all. The person doesn’t even have to talk or advice, someone dumping a million naira on our feet may not help (except d source of concern was financial).
A: WOW. Yeah, very true.
A: So the person that listens to you has made an impact yeah?
Tee Abraham: Yes, cos that might be equivalent to oda obvious “impact” at another time or situation
A: Lol, yeah
A: The reason why I’m asking all these is that I was talking to someone (we were talking about how the world is changing and there’s really no safe profession, everything seems to be fading away, new inventions and all)
A: Then I was like ‘that’s why I want rapture to take place so we can go to Heaven and forget the worries of these world’=-D
A: Then he was like ‘No, not yet abeg. He doesn’t want Baba God to ask him what impact he made in his lifetime ‘
Tee Abraham: Ohh, I see
A: I was like ‘I don’t think you have to live so long on earth before you make an impact, as you are like this you can make an impact ‘
Tee Abraham: Very true
A: At some point, I myself wasn’t getting confused about the impact thing cos we continued talking about it
A: I started feeling like maybe I haven’t done anything in my life until I’m all grown, making money and helping the society and all.  So I decided to ask someone for clarity and also share with the person so his mentality might probably change.
Tee Abraham: I see
Tee Abraham: Do u know d parable of sheep n goat?
When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.
For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ The King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’
Tee Abraham: Dt’s impart
A: Wow =-D
A: Thanks a lot
Tee Abraham: One more thing
Tee Abraham: Heaven will also judge impart based on the grace we have been given.
A: Yeeaaah, I get.  Makes sense
Tee Abraham: A lot of pple want to wait till dey av gathered an empire b4 dey can make impart, where as impart can be made wt very small thns
A: I totally get you =D/
Tee Abraham: Bn nice chatting wt u
A: Same here =-D
A: Thanks a lot Tolu!
Tee Abraham: Uw dear
The only act that qualified the prostitute Rehab to be named in the bible as a hero with a praiseworthy action was hiding the Israelite spies away from the Amorite soldiers on their tail, she herself being an Amorite. That is impact. From this singular act Rahab became an ancestress in the royal line from which Jesus came.
The bible is full of such ordinary everyday acts that caught the attention of heaven and marked by heaven important. From Ruth leaving her people to follow a widow to her land, to followers of that sold all they had, land and houses, bringing all the proceeds to be shared among the poor.

Impact should also be evaluated based on the talent given to us, so as not to feel comfortable with mediocre activities while we may be called to do great things. However, impact comes from small unseemly important activities. But we should not get too comfortable with making small impact if we have the capacity to make greater impact.

Remember to check back tomorrow for another post on the #PSSeries. You can also send in your questions(s) by filling the section provided for it below or send it to admin@lifegiva.com.

Feel free to contribute via your comments 😀 I’m really looking forward to reading them.

This suggested post will come in handy as well;

Influence and Impact: The Journey to Significance 11

See you tomorrow by 12 Noon for an answer to another of life tough issues and someone’s Personal Struggle. Do you have a question or an issues you’ll love to be address, submit it below.

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#PSSeries: Inter-tribal Dating/Marriage

“I am a graduate and in my late 20s. I met a guy, we love each other and he is interested in taking the relationship to the next level, but my parents said no, because he is Calabar
and we are Yoruba. What do you see to that?? I have made certain decisions before without their interference. For this one, they said Calabar is far and also because of their culture.”

Whether it is good to marry from a different tribe or not is not the case, every human being is a summation of a lot of things – background, environment, family, education, upbringing….with ethnicity being just one out of the many factors. Saying someone shouldn’t marry solely because of ethnicity is like insisting on 100% compatibility between partners for marriage. Even siblings that grew up under the same roof and from the same parents, having the same upbringing, environment and every other thing will still have their individual differences.

Let’s examine the reasons your parents declined the marriage proposal;
  1. Distance.

I was recently discussing with a friend- a Nigerian studying in the UK,  that a time is coming, which I believe is here already, where what parents will have to struggle with won’t be inter-tribal marriage, but interracial or international marriage and the reason is simple. Judging by the rate at which foreign higher institutions of learning are greatly becoming the first choice for postgraduate studies, and from the way youths have to mix up with classmates or communities from different continents, interracial marriages are bound to take place. Besides, we all know that love is a funny thing, it cuts through barrier, race or nationality.

So, dear parents, start working out for the new wave that is about to hit you.

And if Calabar is far, I wonder if your parents will object to the marriage if your husband flies you to the United State after the wedding.

  1. Cultural Difference

Hmm, culture is changing. That is the truth, how many youths not older than 25 know their local dialect? Is that the fault of the youths? If you never made it compulsory that I learn my language or other cultural practices, why insist I subject my marriage choice to cultural practices?

I strongly believe that the choice of a marital partner should be subjected to individual attributes, character and traits, not culture. I won’t debate the fact that, cultural differences used to matter back in the days of our parents, but do they still matter so much? I’m Yoruba and I was born and bred in Lagos, you are Calabar and you are born and bred in Lagos, how different do you think we’ll be? I once had a Delta roommate whose only attachment to being delta was his “Delta” name, which is not even his first name.

Neither am I suggesting that you become entirely blind to your partner’s cultural practices. You must find out how deeply committed/rooted to his culture s/he is, and find out if you can deal with that. Also, what happens to you if either of you dies, especially the husband. As much as the choice of who to date and eventually marry should be solely based on that individual, you must not leave out any loose ends, find out all you need to because with sound information/knowledge, comes a sound decision.

Here are preventive measures to avoiding being a victim of facing inter-tribal marriage issues.

  1. Know your parents’ stand on inter-tribal marriage before you fall in love.

Yes! It sounds funny but it’s true. If you know that your parents are ardent and bent, unshakable like the rock about their disapproval of inter-tribal marriage, you’ll always caution yourself to not fall head over heels with someone not your tribe, just the way it’s wise to know someone’s genotype before falling in love (A post on this some other time). Prevention, they say,  is better than cure.

  1. Talk about it before it becomes a major issue.

This was what I did. In my 100 level, I became close to an Igbo girl, no serious feelings, just friends. So, it dawned on me that there was a possibility of actually falling in love with a non-Yoruba. By then, I was so sure of my mum’s stand about marrying a non-Yoruba. So I decided to bring the topic up very often. I asked her why she always said she didn’t want any of us (I and my siblings) to marry from another tribe apart from Yoruba, and when she told us her reasons, I simply argued them, using scriptures which I knew will be her weak point. You can’t argue with parents using facts. Parents seem to always have experiences to counter your points.

Back to mum’s story.  With talking and arguing, she gradually began to see from my point of view. Finally, mum agreed that any tribe is good, but the lady must be cultured (or respectful). Talking about it did it for me, but mind you, this took over three years of going back and forth over it.

  1. Give your parents some exposure.

I’ve personally gathered that it is none exposed parents that insist on same tribe marriages. Parents that haven’t really mixed much and don’t have friends from other tribes or haven’t being in their midst for a prolonged time tend to be like that. Or should I rather say, that it’s parents that don’t have “good” friends from other tribes and haven’t being in the midst of people from other tribes with exceptional characters and life styles, because meeting some kind of people from other tribes can contribute to their firm beliefs against marrying from those tribes.

Give them some exposure, arrange a vacation(If you can afford it) for the sake of changing environment and mingling with other race and tribes and they will see that most of their fears are merely facades. Not that there are no causes to worry over inter-tribal marriage at all, but are they solid enough to prevent two grownups, convinced and fully aware of their choice from proceeding with it? I doubt it.

  1. Let them meet the guy/girl on a platonic level.

We know that what it takes to make marriage work is mostly based on an individual than the tribe he/she is from. It’s all  a result of the character and principles we build as individuals. Some people from different tribes can excel in what makes for a better marriage and home that those of our tribe.

Get your parents to meet this individual on a natural level, so that before they are blinded by their tribalism, they will see the person for who the person really is, and it will grant the parents to  access him/her as an individual, independent of his/her tribe. This I believe as well might take some time.

Here are some Corrective Measures; you are in it already, how do you fix it?
  1. Prove their fears and worries wrong.

Parents’ stand against inter-tribal marriage is mostly fed by fears: fears from experiences they have had and of course, those also contributed by our darling African Magic. They have heard stories, seen situations where inter-tribal marriages end in terrible disarray (not like same-tribe marriages don’t end likewise), but we are  all quick to conclude that the cultural difference was the sole cause of the fiasco.

Prove them wrong, find out their fears and show them why it won’t matter in your case; words are cheap.

  1. Seek Higher counsel

Of course, talk to the people they respect- to your religious leaders or your parents’ older relatives. It will be easier for them to convince your parents. Parents will see your childishness before they will consider your wisdom. Thus, listening and accepting what you will say will be somewhat hard for them.

  1. Pray about it.

Lol! Yes, I know you were waiting for this point and here it is. Prayer can fix this like it can fix anything. But I need to let  you know that prayer is not a scheme that exists  to manipulate God’s hands in approving your own will. Prayer is to enforce His own will. I think it is important I state that.

  1. Be Patient.

So many youths make irrational decisions when faced with this situation. I understand that the the cord of love can be stronger than that of family. Hence, you decide to elope with your Romeo to marry against you parent’s wish. This is not a wise thing to do.

You are presently in your late 20s as you stated, so I assume time isn’t exactly on your side. I will strongly advice you to be patient about this. After all, marriage is a life long journey. Spending more time to prepare and ensure its success isn’t a lost investment at all.

Also, find a personal (intimate) and relaxed mood to talk with your parents (I suggest separately, or either of them who is more hinged on the “no inter-tribal marriage scheme”). Spend that time really finding out what the motive behind their stand is , what fed that belief until you are able to get to the root of that belief in their heart. It is at that point you will be able to uproot or influence it. This action will do one of two things – change you or change them.

You might wanna ask, What does the bible’s stand as regarding inter-tribal marriage?

The very first verse in the bible about marriage Gen 2:23 The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman, ‘ for she was taken out of man.” 24 For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” Passes a salient message, and that is the departure from your root to start a new home, meaning regardless of your race and tribe, what’s important is, leave that behind and become one with your spouse.

Some might want to argue that God prohibited the Israelite from marrying from some tribes, that is very true, but do you know why? The reason is clearly stated in this verse; 1 King 11:2 “The LORD had clearly instructed the people of Israel, ‘You must not marry them, because they will turn your hearts to their gods.'”. It is to prevent them from being swayed by their godless ways and acts, which Solomon fell victim of. And even now, there is no more Jews (Israel) and Gentiles (Non-Israel).

So the bible is not against inter-tribal, interracial, inter-ethnic marriage.

I wish you the very best, and if you are very convinced of this union, I pray they see reasons and give you their blessings because you need it.

I’ll like to welcome practical (life) experiences on this topic, stating what happened and how you went about it, kindly contribute as a comment or send it to mail@lifegiva.com, and we’ll do a sequel to this post sharing them.

I’ll be waiting to read your comments 😀

This suggested post will come in handy as well;

 Do you have a question or an issues you’ll love to be address, send it to hello@lifegiva.com

#PSSeries: Dealing with PARENTAL PRESSURE

Teen Daughter Arguing with Mother --- Image by © Ariel Skelley/CORBIS

Teen Daughter Arguing with Mother — Image by © Ariel Skelley/CORBIS

There is something common to most African parents: they idolize the idea that they know more than you, they believe you owe who you are today to them and hence, they have the right to dictate your life and influence your choices and decisions.
This parental pressure and excessive influence don’t start overnight with the big decisions of who to marry or where to reside. It started way before you were aware of yourself. They picked your schools (primary and secondary), decided your neighbourhood, hence your friends; they picked your entire wardrobe till you could buy clothes for yourself, and you think you will just grow up and automatically snap out of the hook?
There are a couple of things you should know about African Parents:

  1. You never outgrow them seeing you as their baby

As much as you seem all grown to you- both physically, intellectually and otherwise, you never outgrow being your parents’ baby. They practically watched you grow from a toddler into the big boy and big girl that you’ve become. And remember, as you were growing, they were growing too, so even in your thirties, you are still their baby.

  1. You can never know more than them.

I don’t need to stress this point. I’m sure you must have heard a thousand and one lectures on this from your parents during those times you wanted to prove that you knew what you were doing. A Yoruba adage says- Bi omode ba laso tagba, ko le ni akisa tagba (If a child has as many clothes as an elder, he cannot have as many rags as an elder); a saying to prove that with age lies experience, which is a strong pillar, a strong ground our parents stand to enforce their interest, or rather what they think is best for us.

  1. They love and want the best for us.

This point is open to debate, but I think except for extremely devilish and selfish parents, all parents want the best for their children. Now this “best” is very relative and subjective to their level of exposure or to the extent their resources can accommodate; but if we measure their intentions against their exposure and resources, we will see they want our best.
Now, this best is according to their definition, not yours, so what is the best to them, might not be the best to you, about it being the best for you, let’s leave that for later.

  1. They are afraid.

If every parent will be sincere, they will admit that they are afraid. They have a great level of fear of about a lot of things. One major fear is losing us to whatever (life, wife/husband, career…) and this, in turn, influences a great deal of what they do, why they stand their ground over what they think is best. They can’t  bear to watch us take risks anyhow.

  1. They are more conscious about security than fulfilment.

Youths are more focused on passion, dreams, ambitions and the likes; we want to pursue our dreams, do what makes us happy and what we get the highest form of satisfaction from, but parents don’t see that way. Their first focus is Security- financial security being the top of the list.
And in a way we can’t blame them, they don’t want you to be a liability to them in their old age. Instead, they want to sit back, stretch their legs and reap all the investment they put into you.
Thank God the entertainment industry is blooming now, I can imagine a father calculating how much will be entering his bank account monthly while you are busy talking about a career in comedy.

  1. Parents see us as trophies or as bragging rights.

This is another important point, a reason we can question their love and judge their motives. Parents want to have a voice among their mates when they meet and if their children come up as a part of the discussion, they want to be able to brag about our careers, achievements, family and so on. They want to be able to say that you are living in one big city, or doing one job that pays in millions, or that you are married to the son or daughter of someone that has status in the society.
I bet there are more, like, can they ever stop comparing us to one classmate or one family friend? Choi! But this is enough for the purpose of this post.
How then do we deal with the firm grip of control by our parents, wanting to have the final say about all our life decisions?
Now I feel very moved to say this before stating what to do; It is mostly youths without a clear sense of purpose and direction that tend to fall victim of parental pressure and assertion. I know this is not an absolute statement, but when parents perceive your passion and see your active pursuit of a goal, they tend to later come around and support you. The moral lesson of this is before you go about complaining how your parents want to control your life, you must have a clear sense of direction for yourself, they will perceive it. Not that you stay in your room all day playing FIFA and watching Sitcom series, such that when they insist you take a form for a graduate program, you lament that you are pursuing a dream.  In what? Theatre or gaming?
Passion is perceivable, it is transferable.
So what should we do when faced with parental pressure and fierce control?

  1. Stop Arguing

I didn’t learn this quite early and some few confrontations that should have lasted 5 minutes took the whole night. You don’t have to always prove yourself, you don’t have to always win an argument (you can hardly win one with parents), and you don’t have to always respond to them or reply them.
After some really tough clashes with my parents, my younger sister called me on the phone and said that I’m the one that loves trouble, that instead of replying and arguing, I should just keep quiet and listen, nod and say yes. And it has worked for me thus far.
Note this is not in a bit to fool your parents, but some things are better demonstrated that said, some points are better painted than described in words. A good instance is this- do you know that your parents will stop shouting and be arguing with you the first time you show them the cheque from a show or a job? That’s what I mean by keeping quiet, let the results do the talking.
Even the 12 years old Jesus exhibited this when He stayed back in the temple at Jerusalem after the festival of Passover, He didn’t argue at all, He gave a response they didn’t understand, so He just followed them back home.

  1. Be Patient

It will take a while before parents will eventually see what you want and agree to let you pursue it. But in the meantime, be patient. Be patient, just calm down, keep your fingers crossed and wait patiently for that day to come. They didn’t form their mindset overnight, it won’t change overnight.

  1. There is no point rebelling.

This is one of the youth’s best way of responding to parental pressure and control – we rebel, we start from not using their cars and not collecting money from them, to moving out of the comfortable house under their roof to go manage ad hustle somewhere.
All these have their places, but they shouldn’t be the initial response. They shouldn’t even be an option till you have no other option and you are crystal clear of the path you are treading (or want to tread). After all, God put us under their care for a reason, knowing their hearts and mindsets very clearly.

  1. Know how far you are supposed to hold your ground.

We don’t really want to hear this, but it might be the best thing you are supposed to do. Sometimes, we are just being totally myopic or blinded by youthful exuberance, taking our parents’ wisdom for folly. They are wise, you can’t refute that, so you owe them a measure of attention. Learn the wisdom you can. Know when to agree with their suggestions or when to submit to their pressures and when to do otherwise. This is wisdom

  1. Open Up to them

One area we youths fault at is in keeping our plans and ideas to ourselves, staying distanced from the first set of people that should be closest to us. How do you expect to receive support from your parents when they have no idea what you are up to? They are not mind readers or dream-gazers, you’ll have to tell them. Share it with them, whether it makes sense or not. It is then they be able to give you proper counsel and support where need be.

  1. When things get beyond you, seek a higher counsel.

If your parents won’t listen to you because you are just a kid, they will probably listen to a friend of theirs or their parents, or your boss or your lecturer. When it seems as if your parents are just refusing to listen at all, try approaching them through someone in their class.

  1. Detach early.

How easy will it be to say no to your parents’ wish at 27 when you have practically said yes to everything they wanted and instructed till that point? Youths should learn to detach from their parents early. By detaching, I don’t mean separating yourself from them or seeing them as the devil that wants to make you fail in your life’s pursuit. No, learn to start making little decisions yourself; take little actions on your own.
Ask them not to worry about little excesses and extra favours, like always dropping you off, making your online purchases and booking, deciding which extracurricular activities or societies you join, then gradually to picking your major. Staying independent early saves you a whole lot of pressure.
I believe you have seen a better light on the issue if Parental pressure. This post is a response to a mail from a lady describing how her parents have practically decided her path and made every single decision for her till this point. Send in your questions and paint your own scenarios so that future post can be better tailored to suit your specific needs.
This post is mostly about Parental pressure as regards making choices. Subsequently, we’ll focus on other more specific issues we have with our parents. You can send your question or instance in (either to admin@lifegiva.com or fill in the portion below), and I’ll treat it.

I’ll be waiting to read your comments 😀
See you tomorrow at 12 Noon for an answer to another of life tough issues and someone’s Personal Struggle. I promise to keep it real here 😉

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#PSSeries: The Death Of A Loved One

ca. 1985 - 2000, Lusaka, Zambia --- A wife mourns over the coffin of her husband who died from AIDS-related illness. --- Image by © Jeremy Horner/Corbis

A wife mourns over the coffin of her husband Image by Jeremy Horner/Corbis

In today’s Personal Struggle Series [#PSSeries], our focus is on “The Death of a loved one”.
The death of a loved one is often times accompanied by hurt, questions and uncertainties. What should we know about The Death of a Loved one? How should we handle The Death of a Loved one? Read on.
This was a struggle I personally faced when I lost my brother, who was not just a brother, but a friend, confidant, mentor…among other things. His death was a huge blow to me, and my family, he was barely 20 years old. When he died, I was plagued with questions, lots of them; was he killed, did he die at the right time, doesn’t God heal…bla bla bla.
It was a hard time for my faith, questioning everything I have believed in; God, His existence, His love, His abilities…
But these truths made all the difference;

  1. Understanding what Death means to a Christian.

Death to a Christian is not a loss. To the family and friends, of course it is a loss, you’ll be hurt and pained, you’ll cry and mourn, but to that person it is not a loss; IT’S A GAIN.
“For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain (even better)”. Familiar with that statement? It was uttered by Paul in Philipians 1:21.
We’ve seen cases where Christians have divine experiences at the point of their death. Like Stephen in the Bible who saw heaven, saw Christ waiting for him. I’m sure at that point, they had no more interest or connection with this world, they wouldn’t wish to stay back.
The text below explicitly answers the question of what happens to a Christian when they die;

“And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and was raised to life again, we also believe that when Jesus returns, God will bring back with him the believers who have died 1 Thess 4:13-14

This leads to the next point.

  1. Afterlife

If there was no afterlife then we can just cry and mourn, but since we have a hope for an afterlife, then that is another consolation for us, we’ll meet again to part no more.

For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised…Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, 1 Cor 15:16,18,20

And the afterlife, i.e. heaven is a place of incomprehensible joy and peace, one nobody will even want to trade for this world.

Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat upon them, nor any scorching heat….He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”” Rev 7: 16; 21:4

I believe that the thought and pain of losing a loved one should motivate us to reach out to all our unsaved friends and family, so that when they eventually die, which is inevitable, it won’t be a cause for regret but rejoicing.
I believe this post will not be complete if I don’t talk about cases where the person that died is a pillar to their family, breadwinner or care-giver.
In such a case, it is very understandable to be in deep sorrow and think the world has come to an end, but we can take comfort in this.

Sing to God, sing praises to His name; Lift up a song for Him who rides through the deserts, Whose name is the LORD, A father of the fatherless and a judge for the widows, Is God in His holy habitation. Psm 68:4-5.

I love the way Jer 49:11 puts it; “But I will protect the orphans who remain among you. Your widows, too, can depend on me for help.”
It is God that provides, protects and sustains from heaven, He is called a father, not a ceremonial position, but an actual one. He might not be here physically, but He can use anybody, He is able to raise help where we least expect, if He can rain down food in the desert because there was no other means of feeding His people, He can and He will take care of you, so cheer up. And look up to Him.
Other Bible reading;

But someone will ask, “How are the dead raised? With what kind of body do they come? For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed. For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain (Extracted from 1 Cor 15)

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You’ll also like to read these articles;



See you tomorrow at 12 Noon for an answer to another of life tough issues and someone’s Personal Struggle.

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A man prays before a church service at Mt. Calvery Missionary Baptist Church on Hilton Head Island. Gullah religious beliefs are derived from Christianity but their style of worship reflects their African heritage. --- Image by © Pete Marovich/Corbis
In today’s Personal Struggle Series [#PSSeries], we’re dealing with unanswered prayers or situation refusing to change after prayer.
I’m sure at a time or the other we have all been in this situation where we were praying about a situation or a need and no answer seems to be coming forth as we see no visible or significant change.
Of course, you know about prayer and the fact that God answers prayers that is why you prayed about it.
I had to learn this in a hard way, by experience. Over a period of time, I was asking God for something and no answer/change was forthcoming, it was almost tending towards depression courtesy of other pressures around that situation until I learnt what I will be sharing now.
Before then, this is why we can take the point and accept it as the truth.
1. God is ever/eternally loving and merciful, the bible says that His love endures forever, His love is eternal, it never quits.
So God loves you in the midst of that situation, and that leads to the next point.
2. He is working out the best for you. He is working for your good.

Rom 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who[i] have been called according to his purpose.

It is also important to state biblical reasons why your prayers might go unattended to by God, because no prayer heard by God ever leaves the person praying empty-handed, if not receiving what you asked for, God will use it to strengthen your faith and trust in Him…
So here are the reasons why God probably didn’t hear your prayer.
1. Sin or State of your heart
The very first thing you must check when there seems to be a delay in having your prayers answered is the state of your heart. Is there an unrepented sin?

Psalm 66:18 – If I had cherished iniquity (Sin) in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.

2 Chronicles 7:14 – if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

Proverbs 15:8 – The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him.

Mark 12:40 – who devour widows’ houses and for a pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation

Also part of the state of the heart is asking if there is Enmity in our heart and unforgiveness to your spouse or to other people. Because Jesus expressly stated that if there is

Matt 5: 23 “So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God.”

2. Wrong Motives
James 4:3 “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures (or passions)
Another major reason God will not hear your prayer is when the motive for asking is not consistent with godly or scriptural doctrine or the thing you are asking for is for a wrong reason. A very popular example is people that ask for things to show off or oppress their mates.
3. Doubt
But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does. – James 1:6-8
Without faith it is impossible to please God, without faith, you won’t believe that He is able to do what He promised.
4. Hypocrisy

Mark 12:40 – who devour widows’ houses and for a pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.”

To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’ “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted. Luke 18: 9-14

I’m sure this story perfectly illustrates this point. You have to come to God humble, understanding we owe our access to Him, and Him answering our prayers to Grace, nothing but His grace.
After you have ensured that all f the above is checked/satisfied, what do you do when the situation doesn’t change?
You have to realise that every of God’s promises and answers to our prayers come with a timing, a timing that is determined by God based on wisdom that is higher than your wisdom.
He determines the perfect time to when He knows you need it best, not when you think it’s best for you to have that answer.
So PATIENCE is a very important component that must go alongside your prayers.
A lot of people had to wait for a long period of time to receive what God promised them, we have Abraham; waited 25yrs for Isaac, David; 23 years to finally be crowned King after he has been anointed, and even Zachariah and Elizabeth, the bible said that when the angel came to announce that Elizabeth will be pregnant, He said ” “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah! God has heard your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give you a son,…“How can I be sure this will happen? I’m an old man now, and my wife is also well along in years. Then the angel said,… It was he (God) who sent me to bring you this good news! …For my words will certainly be fulfilled at the proper time.(at their appointed time.)  Luke 1
Every answer to prayers, every of God’s promise has an appointed time, which I believe is better than our own desired time. I’m sure Zachariah and Elizabeth wouldn’t have wanted just any child other than John the Baptist at that at that “delayed time” as against just any child if they had the chance of choosing.
Can our prayers be stopped like it happened to Daniel? I don’t think so because unlike Daniel’s time. We pray in the name of Jesus, a name that comes with an authority they can’t withhold or stop.
It might just not be time, be patient. God is every loving, ever caring, plotting your best from that situation. So the peace you have among the storm. Among that situation shouldn’t come from receiving the answer, but in God who loves you perfectly and who is ever faithful and trustworthy.
So your faith should be based in God and not in the answered prayers.

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See you tomorrow by 12 Noon for an answer to another of life tough issues and someone’s Personal Struggle. Remeber to send in your questions.

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When Is The Best Time To Introduce Bae To Your Parents? (With Real Responses)

When is the best time to introduce bae (as your bae, not just a friend) to your parents?

We asked this question on our Instagram page here We gave 3 options

a. When you start dating.
b. When you are ready to marry.
c. After you/he proposes.

And we asked people to include theirs.

Read below a few of the responses we got.




From all the responses, we can all agree that the right or the perfect time to introduce the person you are dating and intending to get married to your parents differ from person to person, and the kind of parents you have or culture also has a huge influence on the timing. But we can all agree on a couple of things.

1. Your relationship shouldn’t be kept a secret from our parents.

@thealphadawn gave a reply we can all relate to. Oftentimes, your mother may know your relationship status or the person asking you out, when you’re close to saying ‘Yes’ to a proposal into a relationship, or when the relationship gets serious. It is also the same for some others whose dads are pretty open, free and friendly.

There is wisdom in not leaving your parents in total darkness about your love life. Their involvement in your relationship(s) has the potential of saving you from headache.  Parents have a great amount of wisdom we cannot deny or ignore, therefore we are able to get wise counsel early enough.

There is wisdom in not leaving your parents in total darkness about your love life. Their involvement in your relationship(s) has the potential of saving you from headache. Click To Tweet

Yes, a lot of those are biased or experiential which might not hold on all grounds, but they still know something you’ll need to make the best decision.

Plus when you introduce your partner to your parents you can assess what/how they feel about the person when you know it’s easy to know what battle you need to fight and actually start fighting it early.

In the situation where your parents don’t agree with your choice for whatever reason, it is wiser to know at the early stage of your relationship not after you’ve been dating for three years and he has proposed.

Parents have a great amount of wisdom we cannot deny or ignore, therefore we are able to get wise counsel early enough. Click To Tweet

2. You don’t want to introduce too many people to your parent(s)

Introducing someone to your parents as the ‘Love Of Your Life’ when the relationship isn’t serious yet, or when you aren’t sure and certain this is heading towards a marriage oftentimes puts you at the risk of introducing too many people to your parents.

In some cases, you stay in the wrong relationship simply because you have told your parents this is the person you are getting married to.

Don't stay in the wrong relationship just because you already introduced him/her to your parents. Click To Tweet

There is the wisdom in telling your parents when you start liking someone, or when a guy is just hanging around your space giving all the green lights.

Just as stated by @iam_bethel – Before we start dating, when I start seeing hints my mum will know 😂😂so she can join me in prayers. The prayer support, the counsel…

But I believe this thought will also help you be intentional about your relationship choices, you ask yourself, “Is this the kinda person I want to introduce to my parents? If ‘No’, then what are we doing together?.

Be intentional about your relationship choices Click To Tweet Introducing someone to your parents as your partner when the relationship isn't serious oftentimes puts you at the risk of introducing too many people to your parents. Click To Tweet

In summary;

I believe that we can carry our parents along in the entire phase of our love life. It might be to just let them know what your relationship status is, you might not need to bring him home to meet your dad till you are staring marriage in the face.

But you should let them know you are dating someone and let them know who the person is (name, pictures…) when the relationship become serious.

I think most importantly, be open and cordial with your parents on this matter as early as possible. Know their thought on an inter-tribal relationship, about different denominations, about personality traits and character, about the age difference, all things relationship and marriage related, it will save you a whole lot, or should I say, it will have you better prepared.

Be open and cordial with your parents about your relationship(s) as early as possible. Know their thoughts and preferences concerning marriage, it will make you better prepared. Click To Tweet

I hope we have all answered the question pretty well for you.

Please feel free to leave a comment, or a question, or fire us an email at hello@lifegiva.com.

I’ll recommend that you also read; Living With Parents – Dealing with Rebellion

And #PSSeries: Inter-tribal Dating/Marriage


Tribute To My First Friend

The first day I got my first pound of flesh, she chose to keep me. She chose to love me regardless. The moment I received my first heartbeat, I was shocked to know that she still kept me. My presence made her very ill that she couldn’t even eat her favorite meals; she repelled the smell of the kitchen. I felt really guilty. Doesn’t it feel like I only bring her discomfort and pains? What about her career? She spent passion, energy and resources to build it to where it was. And now, she’s just going to put her business and workplace reputation on the line and focus on me instead?

Is she crazy? How can a sane person count years of personal pursuits as little value compared to keeping and raising this child? My heartbeat raced till I got weary of my curious soul. Despite it all, she never complained. That’s really odd for a woman in this fast moving age of technology, inventions and the need to stay significant and on top of your career game.


My First Friend

The first day I had my first breath, she was my first friend; we shared everything. You name it! The list is endless, I tell you. The connection was deep and strong. In the kicking, she felt me. In the bubbling, she shared the excitement. In the silence, she was curiously anxious .

In the tears and lots of crying, she couldn’t hide her joy and laughter. In the growth process, she was relentless in her patience, love and understanding. I felt incomplete if I didn’t get to hear her voice for a day. And she felt the same way too.

Art and Music were our love languages. And we lavish it recklessly on each other. When there’s no singing or wordplay or drama moments in the house, then something must be wrong or missing.

The first day it was announced by some physician that I am a girl-child, it became immaterial from that moment to give me directions on where to take my cues from in being the “Total Woman”- because she was my first “Total Woman”. She exuded the unbiased reflection of the Proverbs 31 Woman. She was my coach in every way.

My First "Total Woman"

My First “Total Woman”

This is not to say that she was perfect. Oh, no, she was completely far from it! But, guess what? I wasn’t (and I still am) not perfect. We had to learn how to “forebear each other in love”. You see, as I grew, and my exposure to this environment, called “World” waxed stronger, we seemly almost grew apart. We almost could barely understand each other anymore.

However, despite this intensity that propelled lots of confusion, anxiety and even influenced my identity theft and robbed me of my esteem, she pressed on to keep me, still. She fought for me. She stood by me. There were moments that she was so overwhelmed with concerns for me, to the point she would prefer I at least earn an escape to heaven before I get to commit another sin. She was priceless.

It’s been five years  since  she really craved for a “vacation”. She earned it. Her Master couldn’t wait to have her back Home. Instead of a vacation, she got an eternal rest. That’s prodigious. She left a profound legacy behind, such of which I am yet to still fully comprehend.

Janet Omotoke Alli-Johnson (Nee Fayemi)

Janet Omotoke Alli-Johnson (Nee Fayemi)

When other girls of my growing age were being brought up in the natural instincts of materialism and the dire need for attention, my Mother taught me otherwise. Her child-upbringing techniques and strategies made me feel somewhat ostracized among my peers. I struggled because I wanted to “blend in” and have that achievement of having my own “click of girls”. When I later had a personal encounter with her Master, Who has now become my Master, I finally understood that I am actually a “Misfit” in this “World”. I didn’t get to understand this overnight though. In fact, I am still in the processing room. (lol)

Janet Omotoke Alli-Johnson (Nee Fayemi), my first friend, my first “Total Woman” and my first coach, I so can’t wait to see you again when we gather together on the Day of Our Master. We will get to gist Darling Jesus plenty things. I miss you everyday. But not a sad “missing” moment though. I love you, but God loves you way better, obviously. Keep on enjoying your amazing vacation-turned rest. I celebrate you today and every future day of my life in this transient world.

Thank you for reading.

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Do all men cheat? I bet there are no better people to ask than the men, and by men I mean the married ones.

I received a question from a reader of Lifegiva and it went thus; “Do all men cheat? Do they marry the lady with the intention of cheating or it just happens? (Paraphrased)

To soundly answer this question, knowing there is numerous opinions on this topic already, I sought the opinion of two married men. Both are parents of two and one respectively, and to my somewhat shock as a man myself, they answered my question in a very simple and as honest as honesty can go and here it goes.

Do all men cheat? They answered; “All men are wired to cheat, it’s in a man’s nature to cheat”. In explaining this, it might be too conclusive to say that it’s in every man’s nature to cheat, but here is what they mean, it is in every man’s nature to desire new and better things, and it is man’s glory to pursue and get that new thing”.

Now in defining the new thing is very different and relative from one man to the other, it goes from the kind of craving to climb up the career ladder to owning the kind of ride that will gain them respect when he pulls up in the midst of his friends, and of course, women, like cars, houses and even different level in careers, come with varieties and different satisfaction and ego boosts, so men crave for new women the same way they crave for other things.

Sex or women is a bit different from other forms of cravings, just the way sexually related temptations seems more powerful than every other, and aside, the desires to lust after people of opposite sex when fed burns widely unlike every other.

So do all men cheat? NO, but can all men cheat? Yes, if they feed and give in to their fleshly passion.

Asides that, cheating is easier for married men. Asides the grooming and deep understanding of women, men have been fully exposed to sex. Knowing the totality of a lady’s body, and what to do to make her desire him (Obviously, they’ve had sex with their wives), it becomes an easy work to turn other ladies on.

Do men plan to cheat while they are doing all the wooing and chasing a lady?

I would have echoed an obvious NO, because few guys go into marriage with the intention of cheating on their wives, but the truth is that a lot of guys have/are prepared themselves to cheat long before they get married.

A man who has prematurely fed his sexual appetite, with either pornography or multiple sexual partners, or even the lady they are married to will find it hard to be satisfied by one woman and will therefore cheat. I’ve met guys who, having a girlfriend, see nothing wrong with having sex with other ladies as long it’s nothing more than a one-night stand, i.e. no particular commitment or feelings attached, I guess such a man is preparing to cheat on his wife unconsciously.

How can a guy not cheat?

This was the most interesting part of my conversation with the married men I spoke with, and I’ll highlight few practical preventive measures to guide against cheating.

1. Don’t assume you are above cheating

I think this is the most important of all measures, it entirely empowers the others. You won’t see a need to put up your guard if you think you are not susceptible to something. Every man is susceptible to sexual temptations, otherwise, why have the best of men in the whole of human history fallen to sexual sins?

As long as you have blood, red in colour flowing through your veins, you can fall into sexual temptation, so be aware, and be on guard.

Jesus acknowledges the fact that the flesh is weak, He said, “Stay awake and pray, so that you won’t enter into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” – Matthew 26:41 (HCSB)

2. Draw boundaries and Put up measures

It was funny how one of the married men I spoke with counted how it is a law in his house that they don’t employ a housemaid he finds attractive, and even the one he doesn’t find attractive doesn’t stay under that same roof with him and his family and grown female co-workers are not allowed (because he works from home).

It will be mere foolishness to not consciously put up measures to avoid putting you in situations that will make you break your marriage vow and much more, sin against God.

Wisely and prayerfully consider your activities, environment, personal turn-ons …and make plain boundaries and measures. One can be ‘not having a female best friend’, or being unnecessarily close to any other lady. Never go on trips alone with a lady other than your wife, or go to lounges and clubs without your wife…

(Please men and ladies, kindly suggest more, we can compile that for another blog post)

3. Get your wife involved in your flings and attraction to other ladies

Lastly, get your wife involved in your life and beyond that in your thought, let her know how you feel. Tell her about that sexy lady that was just moved to your department or a storekeeper that made advances at you. Make her your number one accountability partner because she is. Tell her everything.

I have been saved from sexual sin once just because I know I have to tell my friends what happened and telling them I had sex can’t even come out of my mouth and I have vowed to be 100% honest with them. So yeah it works. The thought that you have to tell your wife where you have been and what you did will save you at that moment of lust, and better still, tell her ahead before the evil day comes.

4. The fear of the Lord

This I believe will save any man regardless of the situation he finds yourself. When you truly honour God and you hold His word in high esteem; when His will is law to you and you delight in doing His will, even if you have every legal ground to cheat, even if you have your wife’s approval to sleep with another woman, the fear of God and the fear of going against His will and His word will hold you back.

David made this clear in his writing; How can a young man keep his way pure? By keeping Your word…I have treasured (hidden) Your word in my heart so that I may not sin against You. – Psm 119:9,11

I hear some men brag on some seemingly pardonable reasons to cheat, like being on a long distance relationship, or their partner always too busy to satisfy them. Even if those excuses are true, does any excuse warrant your keeping from the law of the Lord?

There will never be a pardonable excuse to sin. Click To Tweet

In conclusion, I believe a lot has been said already, but really, cheating isn’t when you sleep with another woman other than your wife (or man other than your husband), it starts when you start nursing admiration and interest in your heart towards any other person- not your wife. When you start sharing that place that is supposed to be sacred towards your partner and your partner alone with any other person, cheating has started and it’s a matter of time before you end up in bed or lip lock with that other person. Just watch it, better don’t let it start, and when/if it does, extinguish it fast.

You have God’s spirit in you and His grace on your side. Let’s raise a new generation of men who have decided from today not to cheat.??????

So do all men cheat? NO, but can all men cheat? Yes, if they feed and give in to their fleshly passion. Click To Tweet

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Read also;

The Best Place to Find Your Marriage Partner
#PSSeries: Inter-tribal Dating/Marriage

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