Have you ever lost your Debit Card to an ATM? You typed in your password and seemingly followed instructions to the letter and still the greedy machine swallowed it all without even producing the money you requested? I know you cursed the bank, the machine, the bank CEO and most of all yourself. You cursed yourself because for some reason, you think you should have guessed it would happen. And from that moment, everything that day went downhill despite hoping that it would only get better. You tripped and fell on a flat pavement at lunch time. You stood up brushed the dirt off your shirt and said another silent prayer for the rest of the day. This time, angrily. Only kids are supposed to fall on flat surfaces! In the elevator, you involuntarily farted. That’s it! #DEAD
We pray for different reasons. Mostly, we pray to ask for help. It’s a human thing. We could be different in the sense of what we believe in, who or what we pray to but in the end, we seek to be answered in one way or another. And when our prayers don’t get answered, our faith is shaken. When this happens over a long period of time, we lose our faith. When we lose our faith, we lose our spirit [The little silent voice within us that tells us where we came from and our destiny]. We become animals.
On the other hand when our prayers are answered, our belief is strengthened. Our hope is renewed. We become thankful and want to spread the word so that others might experience what we are experiencing. We start believing in things unseen. Impossibilities turn into possibilities. What I know for sure is that there are many people who believe but very few can show the positive results of their beliefs. So could it be that we don’t know how to pray?
By now you’re asking what qualifications I have to teach people on how to pray. I have none. When was the last time I went to church? Let’s see… maybe 3 months ago, maybe more. I am not special in any way and I feel sad every time I think of the things God has done for me versus what I have done for him. I’m a ‘work’ in progress. I am thankful for the many things that I have experienced through prayer. I’ll share my secrets with you. This is not a lecture and I will say again that I have no qualification whatsoever. The only thing backing me up is, what prayer has done for me. I am a blessed man I tell you. Everything I’ve ever prayed for I have received. And for the few things I am yet to receive, I am gladly waiting for. If ever I fail to receive one of the things on my list, I know it will be for a reason. A bigger plan and purpose. I feel strongly that by reading my findings you will be enlightened. You could be a preacher or even the worst villain, it’s all the same. Praying is talking to God and as with any conversation, there are ground rules. Pay attention because I will tell you just one of the rules that I think is the most important. Important because it determines the outcome. There could be other rules but this one is essential. Walk with me.
God does not owe you anything. You heard me right. He doesn’t. That’s the main thing that you need to understand because I am pretty sure you know it already. Just because you prayed for a car doesn’t mean you’ll get it. Just because you wish your oppressive boss would die doesn’t mean it will happen. If that were the case, there would be no war, hunger or even starvation. The world would be a better place just based on the fact that there are more good people than there are bad people, I believe. You on the other hand are alive because God wills it. You owe God everything. When you pray, you should humble yourself and be ready to accept the answer God will give you. Why? It is for your own good.So God will definitely give you an answer. It just depends on how you choose to receive it.
So how then do you interpret the outcome of your prayers? I will give some practical and familiar examples. Would you give an infant a razor blade just because they cried for it? Would you skip immunizing your child just because injections hurt? Why not? It’s sad to see a baby cry in all it’s innocence. In the same breath, it feels good to be able to provide your child with all it wants. Anything that will make it happy. Clearly, if you listened to the desires of the child you would end up killing its fragile life for giving, or failing to give for the wrong reason. One more question. how then do you explain to a baby who still speaks goo goo gah gah why you had to treat it the way you did? So there you have it. When you pray, understand that God will answer according to his WILL. Not yours. He alone knows the master plan because He made it. So if you prayed with an honest heart and didn’t get exactly what you wanted just know that THAT is still an answer. On the other hand if you got what you wanted after praying, always remember to give thanks because you are still in God’s plan. This realization has been my motivation. That is why I can confidently say, ALL my prayers have been, are and will ALWAYS be answered.
It’s sad that in our time we’ve had people promising you returns if they pray for you. Some even pay in exchange for prayers. They say plant a seed by sending money and reap the benefits. I don’t dispute any concept but at the end of the day, everything depends on God’s will. What God gives, he gives for free.
Next time, I will give you the anatomy of a prayer according to my findings. Ofcourse it will depend on how well this article is received. I could be wrong. Write to me and tell me what you think.
Dedicated to the one person who in my blog poll, said that God does not exist. Just pray that you’re right.
When I was in class one, my teacher noticed I had a passion for arts and so she made it her mission to help me develop my talent. She would always provide me with extra crayons and additional drawing paper. All this, because I painted her a picture of what I thought was her family. Perfect and balanced. I remember her reaction when I presented her the painting. She cried helplessly, hugged me and soaked me in her tears. I was too young to understand what her tears meant so I cried with her too. I was later to learn that she had lost her family in a car crash. From that moment, we became best friends. She even offered to teach me how to count as I had difficulty in math. She liked me. During the morning breaks, she and I would go and sit on the grass at the far end of the field and I would catch grasshoppers for her. I wanted her to smile but she wouldn’t. She was a sad creature.
One day after learning of the fate of her family, I painted another picture of her family. This time, I painted her departed husband and two kids were on the top of my composition with smiles on their faces. At the bottom of the painting I had drawn my teacher smiling and looking up at her family. I used yellow for most of the painting. This also happened to be the first thing she noticed when I presented it to her. I explained that the yellow stood for God, and that he was always watching over her. I also told that her family was safe in his hands. There were tears in her eyes when she told me that she didn’t believe in God. For a young child brought up in a christian family, her statement threw me into personal melee and finally a quest for the existence of God. It was the saddest thing to know that my teacher died a few years later in 1997. It was even more sad to learn that she died having not believed in the existence of a higher power.
When I was twelve, I read the bible from beginning to the end. I wanted to find out why people believed in christianity. It was a tough time as my uncle and his wife had just lost their three month old baby. Naturally, some people wanted answers, others wanted understanding. For me, there was one big question. Where was God when the poor child was sick? Why would he give us a ‘gift’ only to take it away before its time? It just didn’t make sense. I was looking for answers in the bible in the hope that I would get an enlightenment or at least an understanding. I could not bring myself to believe how God formed the universe from nothing. There was a tempest in my heart between logic and faith. In a strange way, I could now understand why my teacher did not believe in God. It was scary to harbor such thoughts in my young mind. But sometimes, the answers come when one is in the eye of a storm because after my long search, I finally got home. I believe strongly that God exists. Trash everything else. That we evolved from apes is complete rubbish. How else can the evolutionists explain why the apes are still there? As one blogger put it, it’s like saying a chair will one day evolve into a table.
You see the terms faith and logic are relative; depending on how you understand them. Personally I believe that faith is observed and experienced by signs. Affection is not affection unless it is expressed in signs. How else do you know that someone loves or hates you? Is love something you can touch? Is hate an object you can take hold of and bury in the sand? Why then do you doubt the existence of God just because you cannot see him?
Likewise, science also derives its basis on signs. Smoke is the signal of a fire. The mood, cognition and voluntary movement in a human being are explained by the presence of dopamine (a neurotransmitter) that the brain is able to produce. So can we safely agree that science and religion are based on signs? Well scientists would definitely not agree to this co-relation. Fair enough. I wonder what they have to say about this thing called gravity. How is it formed? Where does it come from? Clearly, all a scientist can do is try explain the signs of God’s work. It then becomes useless to explain the inside of an egg without first trying to find out where the hen came from. Get it? At the end of the day there is no evidence needed to bring forth faith. Just signs.
‘Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. ‘ Hebrews 11:1-3
In my article Dreams, I gave the example of Jesus‘ Walk On Water. I have come to call this wonderful event WOW- Walked On Water. Of course scientists will always try to refute this fact but I on the other hand, have experienced more WOW moments than I can count. My prayers have always been answered. I have seen the signs of God’s goodness that I can’t ignore. I have done bad things in the past but I now enjoy the mercies and grace of a forgiven man. You see the same author of my faith is the same One who created science. So when science fails to explain an occurrence, I cannot assume that it doesn’t exist.
Sometimes all we need to do is close our eyes and experience the connection. You know that feeling in your heart that tells you, that you are not here by chance?
These are just random thoughts of a man looking to find his way. The journey is long and it’s just beginning. Maybe next time I will tell you what else I have discovered. I dedicate this to my mother who has been the best teacher when it comes to explaining the intangible.
Today’s blogger happens to be one of my best friends who I am always thankful to have met. Meet Linda Muriungi. I have seen her go through the most crucial of life’s stages. She is one of the people I would unflinchingly lay my life down for. She is family. Recently she went through a life threatening situation where she found herself bed-ridden and unconscious. In the darkness that engulfed her, she found her true self. She has a lot to be thankful for and in this post she reminds us that there are more important issues to pay attention to. I’m glad you’re back. This is what she had to say when she came to.
By Linda Muriungi
They say the best therapy for the soul is to put your thoughts on paper, so today I take this chance to bare my soul. Just for the simple reason of stirring a sense of faith in myself and others. To believe that everything always happens for a reason. To accept that the experiences we go through are meant to challenge us and afford us an opportunity to learn something novel and life altering.
So as I sit here today wondering where to begin with my tale or rather true life experience, my pen comes to life.
As the year began on a good note for some, mine took a turn for the worst. What I went through was one of those things that happen in a split second, that turn your life into a midst of uncertainty and turmoil. How to deal with it and its effects is the test. This incident made me look at myself with a keen eye and it is with coming face to face with such a life altering event that one learns to appreciate life in totality.
You see the worst thing about the ordeal, was that I never saw it coming. I went about my normal life yet the clock was counting down to that fateful day. And thereafter, my wall came crashing down. I wondered, why me? Why now! Was this part of God’s plan? Then again, I worried about how soon I would get back up.
Good news, I made it. Two months down the line and have never been more true to myself as I am now. How you may ask? It simply took the willpower to make my situation better, faith in my Father (God) who at some point I had almost given up on, and the presence of my family & friends who all stood by me every step of the way. You see, to get better in whatever situation; you need lots of laughter, stress relievers and hope. Figure out what you want to achieve and work towards achieving that goal. It is all about determination which gives one the strength to continue, the steadiness to succeed, and the wisdom to slip past difficulties undisturbed.
All I needed was some sort of assurance that it would be okay. And it now is.
The trick to handling such experiences, and trust me I know how tough it is to keep on keeping on, to smile at the world and yet you are dying inside, is to simply; stay positive (encourage yourself with simple phrases, they will mean a lot to you despite the simplicity in the words) maintain good friendships (keep positive people around you), keep your family close (they got this uncanny way of loving and caring for you when you need it the most) and lastly pray until something happens, as the track for Kanji Mbugua goes… P.U.S.H ON (Somehow I have never been this close to God, He’s kept me sane in a time of chaos)
Now it’s time for me to live my life, smile as I face the world with my head held up as I tackle the everyday challenges. I will try to take each experience positively and see it as an opportunity to be a stronger and better person. The thing is, it’s life & it happens. The point is to never let anything take your spirit, we are all one slight adjustment from making our lives work for the better.
Today I am honored to feature an article in spoken word by my close friend who prefers to be known by the name La Femme Fatale. She also happens to be a well known public figure; articulate and precise in her wording. I especially like how she has presented a familiar situation today’s article. It is amazing how a lot can be said with such few words. This is deep stuff.
I sometimes wonder
Whether friendships are meant to last forever
Y’know sort of like navigating stormy weather
It’s like Johnny in grade school
Was he a genius or simply clever?
Like a poisoned chalice
Your words heavy
Full of malice
You spread the word
To the nest of vipers
Stories in which, I was front and centre
Laden with lies
Sweetened with hate
Divided and spread out
Like a piece of cinnamon cake
I often wonder how you disguised your disdain
You always chastised me for being too vain
& yet in the same take
You moved quickly, swiftly and sharpened that blade
Not a moment too late
You thrust –
Using your entire weight
Sort of like a snake
That sinks its fangs deep inside
Leaving its venomous poison behind
I try to think back
To when everything was white and black
No shades of grey
Rolling in the hay
We must’ve been 9 or 10 maybe 11 hey?
What happened to all our girlish pursuits?
To our dreams of jumping out of parachutes?
Did they disappear?
Are they no longer here?
Was the apple too sweet?
The perfume too strong?
The one that led you to doing wrong?
To betraying a childhood friend
One who would’ve had you –
Till the end?
Over and over again?
No matter what happened?
It’s always the first cut that’s the deepest
The first bite – always the sweetest
You go through life – you face your weakness
You carry on – you shrug off meekness
You meet new people – you get acquainted
You forget the pain of disappointment
But never the sting of the snake- staring at you naked.