Wednesday, 18 January 2017

And the cut just got deeper

And the cut got deeper.

My Dear Sholly

I'm so grateful to God that you are far away from all the drama going on down here right now. As if losing you isn't devastating enough, we are now dealing with your husband, Kuba  claiming it was your wish to be cremated. Sholly? Really? Cremated ke? Why would you want that? It's not our culture.

As hard as I find this to believe it's even harder to believe you would not have told me if it were so. You told me everything! We hid nothing from each other! If it is true this 'unholy' discussion about how you wanted to be cremated and about how no one in your family was to be allowed to see your body ever took place, I can only wonder why? Why? Who discusses such things?  You were not sick and you are not old. So what would have warranted such a discussion between you and Kuba?

So today, in spite of all our pleading with your husband, In spite of us getting the Nigerian embassy in Poland involved and him being directed to hold till a family member gets there and sees you, we believe he has had you cremated. Ah! It breaks my heart. How could Kuba do this to me? To my family? Aburo mi? It pains me deeply.

Kuba says you said nobody must see your body. He says you said that only I will be permitted to see you yet he refused to wait for me and my husband to process our visas and conclude travel plans. Truth is, these discussions just boggle the mind! Why were you two discussing this kind of matter? And what's is the evidence?

I am being made to understand that in Poland, Kuba as your husband, has the final say because you have officially taken his last name and that's fine. As horrifying as this cremation idea was to us, we were prepared to honor your supposed wishes. All we asked for was the opportunity to pay you our last respects first as a family. Kuba has denied us of that and for this I leave him and his family to God to mete out vengeance on my behalf.

Yes, Sholly, they must pay for robbing us, me, your SisterMom of closure. For thinking it right that we should travel all the way from Nigeria to look into an urn full of ashes! Ah! What a tragedy this is! How painful!!! My darling, I will not travel to Poland for that. It's fine. You are not in the ashes. Neither were you in the lifeless body anymore but most people, faiths and cultures I know make provision for a lying in state ceremony during which family and friends of a lost love one can pay their last respects. It soothes them and brings closure.

Why your husband has  chosen not to give us this 'gift' is beyond me. To any friends of Kuba reading this, please ask him. Why? Why would he do this to us? Why couldn't he just wait for me to get to Poland?
My Aburo, my Cover girl

                                                             Always together. Always.

                                                         My lovely Aburo and I on her wedding day

As much as I don't want to, I just can't help wonder if Kuba and his family are hiding something. Because if there's nothing to hide, why the hurry to cremate Sholly?  If there is nothing to hide why the blunt refusal to let a family member see her body on my behalf? Why😭?

I know you Sholly, you would not have wanted to deny me or your family of this. But it's fine, you are here with me in my heart. You are in the hearts of all of us that love you dearly. So we leave your husband to God. The final Judge.

There are many lessons you are teaching us Sholly through all this. Especially we parents and siblings. This is the first and chief: If your child or sibling living abroad meets and chooses to marry a non-African and live far away from home? BEFORE they marry they must visit your home country. So they will understand that your child or sibling has roots, people and didn't drop from the sky! There is no point crying over spoiled milk but how I wish Prof had insisted you visit Nigeria with Kuba. Maybe, then it would not have been so easy for him to disrespect us as he has.

To my dear African woman /any one from any where, married to anyone not from their own country. I believe Sholly's story has a message for you too: Don't live on 'Love Fantasy' island. Stay connected to your roots. Have a will and let one other person apart from your husband know your wishes about the important stuff should you pass. As much as possible, have a relative that knows what's going on in your life. The big stuff like taking out life insurance, building a home, etc. Family back home must have phone numbers and addresses of key friends they can call should you be in trouble and untraceable.

My sister loved her husband. I believe he adored her too.  To me, they had a great relationship and as much as she shared everything with me, I see now how wide open I left her. No matter how much he loved her Kuba should not have been allowed to believe he was her only family that mattered. And he felt that way because he didn't 'feel' the presence of her Nigerian family enough.

*exhaling*

Sholly, it is well. Because God is still God and I know you are at peace. All this has happened only because God permitted. So while it has left me broken right now, I know that I, Salt will come through this still standing and so will my whole family. One day at a time.

Aburo, ma worry. We will organise a befitting memorial service for you here in Nigeria and by the grace of God, we will all then begin our journey towards healing from this double deep cuts of losing you and dealing with this unnecessary drama. I just thought I should let you know and explain that we did all we could to right this wrong. But God knows best.

Love you Aburo mi Owon!
My Mrs. Gaska!
Sun re o!
Iwo wa!
πŸ’”πŸ’”πŸ’”πŸ’”

Please visit Sholly's memorial page on Facebook
Please sign our #JusticeForSholly petition
Thank you.

Tuesday, 27 December 2016

My 2017 Experiment



I was just looking over my 2016 commitments to myself. And it's either I am not very committed to myself or I'm not a very serious person. Because, of the 16 things I committed to doing to myself, I only really did two. 

But here's the thing. In 2016, I have achieved some things, climbed some mountains, scored some life goals, celebrated some victories I had no clue I would or could. These things, were clearly not on my list. But that did not stop me from getting them done. Just like writing the other 2016 commitments down didn't make sure I fulfilled them. 

So, in 2017, I'm honestly not doing anything.....separate from what God ordains for me. Because I figure, whether I write it down or not, God will have his way in my life. Especially because almost every single day of my life that's what I ask him to do. "Have your way PapaGod". And looking back on 2016, he truly did. And I'm super grateful. 

Don't get me wrong. I have broad stroke thoughts on what I want to achieve in 2017. I want to grow spiritually (I especially seek to hear God like I hear humans); I want to deepen my relationships with people starting with those I share blood with ( create memories and increase the size of my legacy-empire) ; I want to keep excelling at work not for promotion but to exude GodExcellence; I want to maintain a healthy heart and finally I want to take my writing to a new level that generates an additional stream of income for my family. There! That's it! 

Can I just say that this is somewhat of an experiment and I'm not suggesting anyone do same. In fact, I probably should warn you off this because it would appear that I'm not having any plans for my 2017. That could mean I'm planning to fail. Right? If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. 

*shrugs shoulders*  We shall see. All I know is my 2016 was more spectacular than anything I 'planned' at the end of 2015. 

One thing is for sure and this perhaps is the one commitment I'll make to myself: I will write down every single 'first' or 'goal-like' thing I do or achieve or accomplish by the grace of God in 2017. 

So, let's see how this goes.  On January 1, 2017 I get a brand new Salt jar. Let's see how much good I can put in it over the course of 365 days. 

Wish me luck! Actually, no. Luck is for the superstitious. 

 Wish me 'God's Favour,  Wisdom, Grace and above all, Mercy. 

2017?  

Be afraid of Salt. I mean to have my jar full of Testimonies by the time you bow out to 2018. 

 
                             2017 Salt Jars of Life. Empty now.
                                             PTO to 2018
                               (photo courtesy of Google images) 

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Compatible Opposites


Compatible Opposites. I came across this term for the very first time yesterday evening. Even saying it sounds odd. How can opposites be compatible, right? I know but do read on and I bet you will have the same ‘aha’ moment I had. It just makes sense and best of all; it is supported by the word of God. 

Dear Sister, the ‘good thing’ waiting to be ‘found’. Dear Brother still looking to find your ‘good thing’. Are you both still wondering why you are still waiting? Permit me to put it to you that perhaps you are still waiting because you are looking for someone that is ‘just like you’. You need to change that mindset because thanks to Jimmy Evans, I now see that when you are dating or courting someone, you actually should be trying to find your compatible opposite

What on earth does that mean?  Let me explain.

Apparently, while we think we should marry someone the most like us, God did not wire us that way. According to Jimmy Evans, God wired you to pursue your opposite, even subconsciously. No wonder I ended up with my MGM! We are so different and many times I have wondered how come we have lasted this long…but now I get it. Yes, we do love ourselves (and by the way, the love has only gotten hotter because it has been refined by fire) but we have lasted because our strength lies in our differences. We complement each other. I cannot lie; this was a light bulb moment for me.

Mgm and Salt: Compatible Opposites lati 1993.
Glory be to God!

And this is what Genesis 2:18 means, when God says of Adam, "I will make him a helper comparable to him." The word "helper" is translated from the word “ezer”. It means "to supply what is lacking." Wow! Can you see? God didn't create another Adam. He created someone to supply what Adam lacked. He made Eve to complete Adam.  God created me, Salt to supply the administrative and organisational skills that my MGM lacks. Ask him today about our children's birthdays or where our passports are or to complete visa application forms online…you are on your own. I am the Executive in charge of all such matters in our home. But then again, my MGM can smell a con a mile off. I am so trusting when it comes to people. So God placed him in my life to protect me from my own naivete. Lol! I could go on but I am sure you get the picture. 

The question then is how come my MGM and I are compatible then if we are different? We are compatible because in marriage, being compatible is not based on being the same. Being compatible is based on having matching beliefs, values, and character. My MGM and I are compatible because we both look to Christ as our Personal Lord and Saviour; we both are trying daily to live and love like Christ and because we both have agreed to always let God have the final say in our lives and marriage. Oh and yes, we both have also agreed not to ‘craze’ at the same time. Lol! Apart from that, with my hand on my chest, I have to say that we are 80 to 85% opposites.

You see, dear Single in waiting, the last thing you need is another version of yourself.  Stop looking for that. You need someone that will complement you. You need someone that will be strong in the places where you are weak. You need someone that will be the yin to your yang.

Yes, you need to find and marry your compatible opposite.


P. S. For those who are already married, I pray this helps us. No need to wonder if you entered one chance. You did not. Understanding this should enable us harness the power of the differences between us and our spouses. Abi? Yes o!


P. S. 1 This is an old photo but one of my favourites.....and even in our dressing we are demonstrating how compatibly opposite we are. Red is the opposite of white is it not? Lol! 

Friday, 2 December 2016

Looking for a miracle?


Look in the mirror. You are one.

Because you are still here; still alive; still standing. It is not a given.

Think back over this year, I am sure you know of or have heard about people, young people that have passed on. Men, women, brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, aunties, uncles.....all gone...all dead. So sad.

Yet you and I, we are still here. How are we better? We are not. We are just blessed beneficiaries of God's mercies.

As I sat thinking about all of this and wondering how it could be December already, something struck me.

I share about it in my first Salt Talk ushering in Season 2 of my Talks. I invite you to listen here and I pray you are encouraged and your spirits are lifted even if everything on your 2016 'To Do' list is not ticked off yet.

It does not matter.....I believe that in these things, only one thing really matters and if you click the link above, you will find out what that is......

Shalom and of course, welcome to December 2016!


Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Preparing your Teenager for life away from home in this BIG BAD World!


Dear Christian Parents

Is your child getting ready to leave home for college anywhere in the western world? This post is for you. See, even if your child has already gone off to school out there in the wild wild West, you should still read this please. And you know what, even if your child is still far from this milestone, I encourage you to still read it.

As some of you know, my FBS went to college in the US. My Only Princess is now at college there as we speak. They are both different children but at some point or the other, they went through the same thing I am about to prepare you for. I did not prepare to be honest and just weathered the storms with each of them as they happened. Not the best way to do it. This should help make sure you do better.

To make this easy to read, I shall share my thoughts in a 'Rules' format. Here goes:

Rule 1: Do not be blindsided.  If your children are close to leaving home for college/university and they will be going outside Nigeria, specifically to the Western part of the world? Do not and I repeat do not fail to prepare them for the reality that not everyone believes in God like you do. You MUST prepare them well for the onslaught on their minds. For it will surely come and the sad truth is that we really have sheltered our children.

Rule 2: You must begin to prepare your child BEFORE they are ready to leave home. Thriving in college out there begins at home. You see, because Nigeria is mainly Christian and Moslem, we are not faced with the very real issues of atheism that lives in the West. Talk to your children about it so they are not rudely shocked. Don't assume they know and/or fully understand. 
Be close to and talk to your children
(courtesy: Googlei mages)

Rule 3: Expose them to the whole 'Science verses God' magana. Yes, if they go to college in the West, it is waiting for them there. Prepare them. Encourage them to read Christian Science books. Let them watch those National Geographic shows that bring Scientists who believe in God to show how the Bible and the Big Bang theory align not negate each other. If you are a Sunday School teacher and you are reading this, please encourage your Teen Church colleagues to deal with these subjects. As God will help us, our Only Princess goes to a Catholic-sponsored University so she went to her Biology Prof for explanations. And this leads me to Rule 4.

Rule 4: Do not assume that because your child is going to a faith-based college that there will be no unbelievers there. Not true. There are atheists everywhere. And some of them are not nice and will make your child feel foolish for standing up for what  s/he believes in. But if we prepare them well, they will fail.

Rule 5: Talk to your children yourself about how God loves the sinner but hates the sin. Again, I call on Sunday School teachers here. People of God, what are you teaching our teens in church now? We need to let our children understand that while it is true that the Old Testament is full of scary stories of people being punished for their sins by a just God, they have to read ALL of the Bible, all the way up to the New Testament to see the full picture of God who is both Consuming Fire AND Love itself. Why? Because there are people out there ready to tell your child that a God that mean; a God that killed men, women and children cannot be a loving God. They will try to sow these seeds of doubt into your child's mind so we need to makes sure that we have done our best to lay a solid foundation that cannot be messed with.

Rule 6: 
I am not sure how we or our parents before us survived but I suspect it is because the world today is a totally different kettle of fish. Especially in the western cultures, Christians who refuse to read their Bibles are using the scripture to foment hate against people who are different. I mean, Gays and Lesbians. You need to have that talk. Because guess what? Your children are very likely to meet some nice ones out there in school. In fact, some Christian ones. In their classes and then because we failed to explain that we are not called to hate anyone and while, as Christians, we cannot agree with that lifestyle, it does not mean you will be anti-social or rude or mean to anyone. You must tell them it is not in their place to judge anyone. We must used Jesus Christ as the template for how to treat people. All people, the good, the bad and the ugly.


Rule 7: You have to, from now, begin to realize that a time will come when your children will have to do their own faith walk. You cannot legislate their faith. It cannot be by force. Anger is not your friend in this matter. As panicked as you will feel; yelling at or getting upset with your child is the worse thing you can do when they come to you with their doubts. Listen to them, encourage them, live out your faith walk for them to see, empathize with them, LOVE them and then or course, you must PRAY for them always. Remember that even you, you have had your faith struggles, have you not?

As Christian parents, we must believe that if we have done right as God helps us, EVEN if our children stray off the path, the seeds we have sown into their lives will 'call their heads back home' in God's own time. That is why this final rule is key.

Rule 8: I know I talked about praying already but this is so vital, it needs a rule all by itself. My dear Co-Parents, we have got to PRAY! The devil is out there in the world on a rampage. If all you do is look at what is going on in the US, you can see how bad it is. And that is just one slice of the world. And at some point or the other, our children will have to go out and do life in the midst of all that. Are you a spirit? Can you be with them 24/7? Can you know what is going on in them 24/7? No, you cannot. But, we have a God that can so every single day, we must bring our children before him trusting that....

As the Lord lives! Satan will not have our children!!!

I rest my case praying you have heard me. Praying you will act.

I also invite any other parent who has anything to share with us all to please do so.

Have you been through this with your college child? How did you cope? What did you do? Do share please. Thanks!

The pursuit of  degrees will not rob our children of their faith
in Jesus Christ name. Amen!
(image courtesy Google images)





Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Sexual Perversion will not come near our homes!

Dear Moms and Dads,

It is time to pray. Evil things are happening all around us. 

Sister @Shade Femi Lawal contacted me last night and our chat left me floored and totally sick to my stomach. What she shared with me literally broke my heart. I mean it. I wept sad, angry tears. How can this be? Who are these people?! 

It took a while but I only felt better after I had put together some prayer points for her FB group, Praying Moms and prayed them myself. With her permission, I'm sharing them here too with you. Please, PLEASE pray them with all your heart.

None of the evil going on in the world must come near our dwelling in Jesus Christ name. Amen!

************************************* 

Sexual Perversion will not come near our homes!

Praise and Worship (10 to 20 minutes)

Heavenly Father
Lord, I just want to thank you because I know your angels are doing battle for me, and I know that all I am about to ask you is in your Will for me and mine. Thank you for the assurance I have about this. 

Today, Lord, I come to ask that you foil all attacks and traps of the enemy and keep me and mine from the nets of the enemy while we walk by safely. PapaGod, I ask that you go before us and make crooked places straight and shatter the doors of bronze and cut through the bars of iron.

Father, in the name of Jesus Christ, I come especially for my children today. Please do not let them fall prey to those who hunt their souls or seek to harm them. Keep my children from hidden dangers and let no weapon formed against them prosper.

Father, today, I come especially to pray for your protection against the people with evil intentions, perversions and sexual immorality.

PapaGod, do not let my children (name them) or any member of my family or bloodline fall prey to sexually perverse people.

Father! Today, wherever the boundary or the hedge has been broken for the snake to come and bite,  for the devourer to plunder let this prayer be the protection for us. I ask for mercy, forgive me my sins (name them, confess and renounce them) and plead the blood of Jesus Christ to seal upon the broken hedge. 

Father, I bind, block, break and render inoperative, null and void and of no effect any and all legal rights of access of the sexually perverse spirits in and over my household right now in Jesus Name. Amen!

I call upon the power of the blood of Jesus Christ to bring death, devastation and destruction to abuse in all its forms in my home, our schools and churches in Jesus Christ name. Amen!

Father, take up battle against the enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy. In the name of Jesus Christ, I call upon the power of The Blood Covenant and plead the blood of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ over every inch of my child’s (name each child) body, over every inch of their soul, and over every inch of their spirit. Lord, let the blood of Your Son Jesus Christ fully protect them from any kind of harm that the enemy has in mind. Amen!

Father, in the name of Jesus, I plead the blood of Jesus Christ specifically against all predators and every single demon that is attached to these predators. Stop these man/women, and stop these demons dead in their tracks right now so they will not be able to come nigh our dwelling places. In Jesus Christ name. Amen!

Father! Today! Expose every man or woman in my home, our schools, churches doing this evil. Stop them dead in their tracks, in the name of Jesus Christ. Bring them down so that they are not able to rise. 

Father! Please increase a Holy Spirit alarm in me as a mother so that I will be able to spot perpetrators in Jesus Christ name. Amen! My Lord and my God, today, right now, rub your divine salve over my eyes so I can see and over my ears so I can hear your guidance about any enemy lurking in my space. I command a removal of any blindness that the enemy uses to keep me and my children from seeing these wicked men and women. In Jesus Christ name.  Amen! 

Finally, Father, in the name of Jesus, I now ask that you perfectly protect my children as they journey through this life so they can fully accomplish everything that You would like for them to do for You. Thank you Lord for hearing me.

Thank you Lord for hearing me even before I was done praying.  Thank you for releasing your angels to guard our children, our family and property and make a hedge to guard all that is going in and coming out and that in the air above and ground below. 

Thank you for fighting those who would fight against us and for contending with those who contend with us. Thank you because I know that the wicked, both spirit and flesh, have fallen into their own nets and I and everyone I love and care for are walking by safely.

Thank you Lord, for the Greatness of Your Power.  To you alone be all the glory! I love you Lord. Thank you for loving me first and more. 

***************************  

Now, praise God for your victory and newly ignited discernment. Satan, will not have our children! In Jesus Christ's name. Amen!

Monday, 14 November 2016

Happy Birthday to the latest Teenager in our Town!

My dearest LBS

Happy Birthday to you! As I looked at recent pictures of you, I marveled. How time zooms. More importantly, how gracious God has been. No doubt, I'm super rich. Yes, I am. Your Papa and I are blessed beyond belief to call you our own.  You, your older brother and sister. Any day, anytime, I'd choose you three over all the treasures in the world. Any day. Anytime. 

Barring my eternal salvation, you three bring me so much inner contentment as a human being. Thank you. Especially you ( I know you will love thatπŸ˜„! Lol!). It's true, maybe it's a last born thing or maybe it's just who you are, but you express verbally what I believe all my children feel about me. Your Papa. Our lives today and our hopes for tomorrow. You say what you feel, no filters. It worries me and blesses me in equal measures but who is perfect, right? Plus, you know your Mama is a prayer mogul, abi? With, God I got this. I got you. No, scratch that. God's got you. And as you continue to grow up, he will equip you with all you need to live  a godly and abundant life in Jesus Christ name! Amen! 

  
                        The many faces of my youngest heart.

This last year, we've been through some stuff but you know what? I'm proud of you. You are so real and honest and even as you squirmed, you chose to rise above it all and came out clean. God bless you for me. I'm not sure bullying and all the other stuff will ever go away but I know the God in you is Bigger. You will always choose right. You will always choose life. I decree it and declare it over and into you again today as I do everyday.

I'm so grateful to God for how he's shown up for you in your academics. So glad you are putting in more effort now but like you rightly said, 'it's the power of Mommy's prayer'. You are right and always remember that. Prayer works. You pray and study and pray and study. Then you do it all again with some play in between of courseπŸ˜„. Your sister and I are still amazed by your sudden interest in basketball this year. I shall not lie, I was waiting for the 'I'm done with that' day. I'm still waiting. It feels wonderful! Your commitment and dedication to the game is commendable. Keep it up. Especially as it's clear you are on your way to being my tallest child. Lol! I see great things in your future my dear brand new 13 year old son. Great things. 

So, as you turn teenager today, I want you to know that you have your own personal cheerleading and prayer team by your side. As you have found out, there are unfriendly people out there, same age or a bit older than you. But you must remember that they are not the enemy. But there is an enemy. Yes, you have a real enemy, one that wants to steal, kill and destroy you and every thing you stand for.  Thankfully that enemy, according to the Word of God, has an opponent who’s a force to be reckoned with.

You. Yes, you! You have all you need to defeat this enemy called the devil and be all that God has called you to be. Then of course, you have your Papa. Your Brother. Your Sister.  Me, your Mommy. And a host of family and friends praying for you and all our children. And because we choose to live lives that please God, our prayers are powerful. So you just keep remembering to ask yourself what God would have you do in each situation; keep putting in 150% in your school, being the best you can be at home as a son and brother and believe me, these teen years and beyond will end in praise. Of course, tough times will come but you will rise above them all, grow through them all. Better. Stronger. Smarter. In Jesus Christ name. Amen! 

Anyway, I know you will wonder why this year's letter is so 'heavy', right? I guess it's because you kept telling me you are now a 'man'. Lol! This is serious talk between a mama and her son, the 13 year old who is now a man! Lol! But seriously, this letter is a different because it's important. You really aren't a baby anymore. As much as I would love to hide you in a cocoon and never let you out to be exposed to nonsense, I can't do that. You yourself have seen how easy it is to be drawn into bad. 

So, as you are now 'a serious and reflective dude' this letter presents your first assignment. Something to reflect seriously onπŸ˜„. I promise you, every day, in one way or another, I shall be crying out for your heart because it's from there that the life you live will flow out from. Trust me, your mommy is not odd. I know many more mommies just like me out there. Lol! 

And today, I use you as a point of contact to all their sons as  I pray to God to create in you a clean heart, and renew a right spirit within you every day. So that when everyone around you is going low. You will go high. You will be light wherever there is darkness. My LBS, my Tubby-Tub(can I still call you that?), you will respect and revere God and listen to his voice only. My mint new teenager, be strong! Be courageous! Do not be afraid of anyone because God  is always by your side. And as your full name asks rhetorically: Who is greater than God? Nobody! So always remember this, OK? In you lives a very Big God! 

Finally my love, my heart, you will be a shining example to other teens around you: the way you talk, the language you use, the way you carry yourself,  the way you treat others. in love, in faith, and in purity every time will make you a positive role model all the days of your life in Jesus Christ's name. I decree and declare! Amen! 

Happy Birthday my one and only LBS! 

We love you so much and give God our highest praise for your life that we know he has hidden nicely in his Secret place. Have a fun and laughter filled day! 

Your Mommy
❤️❤️❤️πŸ™ŒπŸ™ŒπŸ™Œ❤️❤️❤️

                                  Twinning or not Twinning, that is the question!