10. Love Strengthens Relationships

Proverbs 29:1 “He who is often reproved, yet stiffens his neck, will suddenly be broken beyond healing”.

Mirrors are essential in every household, commonly used for grooming before anyone leaves the house. They are also used to accentuate the space to make a room appear brighter; feel open and airy.  Mirrors are known for reflecting images of objects within their angle, they do not show things that could be there without them. For instance, a vehicle will have side-view mirrors that help a driver see images behind, sideways, and outside the driver’s marginal vision; as well as a rear-view mirror that reflects objects behind the vehicle. The driver ensures they adjust them to get enough exposure suiting his/her height and seat position. And ensures good upkeep to avert hurdles on the journey. The cleaner and more functional the mirrors are, the clearer the vision of the images is reproduced.  

RELATIONSHIPS

How we emotionally and mentally treat ourselves is reflected in the relationships we have with others, be it romantically, in business, with family, or with friends, which will mirror our internal energies, whether positive or negative. Negativity often leads to uncertainty in continuing with relationships. Depending on how the individuals feel, some are likely to simply end it, while some will excitedly wake up to hope and reconcile.

Reconciliation means starting over, instilling a positive mindset in a person. A positive individual radiates positive energy, which solidifies the relations they have with other individuals. The more they give their absolute best in what they do, with love, the more they receive abundant unexpected opportunities. Elevating them to higher steps of growth in all or some areas of their lives. That is why some couples age together until death, Businesses thrive, Families support each other, And friends stand by each other.  Love becomes contagious intently to revive hope in hopelessness.

Relationships are systems, like in business. Success in the business is measured by its intended outcomes. That originates from identified inputs and the processing that communicates how to meet the concrete results. If there is any chaos in the flow, the results will affect the business chain system, and negatively affecting other segments in the Law of Oneness (livelihood of humans, animals, or the environment). Hence some countries get affected by economic decline, rating them negatively in doing business, and exposing their weak governance structures.

LEADERSHIP

Pharaoh the king, governed over all the land of Egypt. Accountable for the well-being of all in Egypt and working with his second-in-command (the Wisemen, officers, sorcerers, magicians, taskmasters, and foremen). We are shown how the livelihood of humans, animals, and land was well managed by Joseph, before and during the famine (Genesis 41:41-56; Genesis 47: 13-25).  And how he reaffirmed that trading during a famine, does not decline the economic growth of Egypt. Positive leadership roles were portrayed by Pharaoh under the guidance of Joseph, his second in command, enabling other nations to trade well with Egypt.

Leaders have advisors, and honest advisors are mirrors reflecting the truth, to ensure the management of any operation becomes a success. It is possible that those in authority can be blinded by their positions and ignore any advice (Exodus 5:15-16). Additionally, leadership can be weakened when the assistants are as blind as their masters. Like Pharaoh magicians, used their secret arts to perform miracles to humiliate, discourage, and dishearten Moses and the Israelites to doubt God.  In their blindness, they incited Pharaoh’s stubbornness, as he was taking pride in demeaning God. Blindly he never realized that his hardened heart was slowly crippling the business systems negatively impacting the economy of Egypt. One plague was enough to negatively affect other parts of the system in the economy.

For instance, “Water turned into blood”. Water is a source of life in the ecosystem that needs to be conserved, to feed on other systems. The fishing industry was crushed (and the fish in the Nile dies, and the Nile stank… Exodus 7:21), and the nourishment of humanity was affected (and all the Egyptians dug along the Nile for water to drink, for they could not drink water from the Nile. Exodus 7:24).

If we are not cautious inflexibility will slowly submerge us into our graves. While it builds our egos and infuses our outlooks into bitterness, grudges, or jealousy (Proverbs 16:18 “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall”.). And, we are all not immune or sheltered from Karma to not take its place, as its purpose is to transform us not to harm us. However, our pride blinds us to our hurtful downfall (Exodus 14: 28 “The waters returned and covered the chariots and the horsemen; of all the host of Pharaoh that had followed them into the sea, not one of them remained”).

Could Pharoah have freely released the Israelites right when negotiations commenced? Was he so hard-headed that he did not observe the damage he was leaving behind? Could he not have turned back when he saw the Israelites crossing the Red sea. Was that not enough for Pharaoh to surrender and go back home to face the consequences of his choices? Could it be that he realized extremely late the wreckage he caused in Egypt? Could it be that the loss of his son, a shamble in Egypt, fueled so much bitterness, jealousy, and pride to rather self-dethrone in the Red sea than be judged? Was he that much hurt and saw no hope but to die in the Red sea?

I believe that God loves us enough to show us that all those negative behaviors that Pharaoh had, are behaviors that we have and can transform. As you are in motion moving forward, you can only see what you leave behind from your side view and your rear-view mirrors. Even what is coming your way from behind to alert you and prepare you on how you can navigate safely. Images from behind will appear as close and clear for you to humble yourself and start to rebuild yourself. Mirrors are those who stand by you, support you and motivate you. They are your truth-teller sent by God to warn you and show you your mistakes. We fight them, crush them, and choose to journey with damaged or misplaced mirrors because they are afraid to kill our pride. It is easy to stick with those who will tell us lies, as they avoid awakening our fiery temper. While we continue exposing others to unsafe conditions causing more damage and destroying relationships.

Pride is a choice we make; we choose to cowardly run away than redeem ourselves. We choose to fake our outlooks than to plead for mercy and unmask. But we can choose to be proud of ourselves when we step into our transformation journey and be the best versions we can be.

Change starts with me.

May God Bless Us All

9. PART 2: IT IS NOT ONLY ABOUT US, BUT MOSTLY THEM.

Numbers 14:31 “But your little ones, who you said would become prey, I will bring in, and they shall know the land that you have rejected.”

I have been defied by the crowd of ants invading my property. I am pounded by these creatures and somehow mystified by how they manage to be undefeated. These very tiny beings have intelligent strategies that left a message in my mind. In as much as I try to keep the house clean, and close their entries, they always find another way. In the early mornings, I would be greeted by the marching unified swarms, boldly taking over my kitchen and very determined to fulfill their mission.

CAN WE DO DIFFERENTLY?

Yes, and we can do it all right in all areas of our lives.  My first writing was about “Masking is a grave”, where I had given an image of being emotionally blinded. But now I want to rough through a short story of my late parents and my youth life.

Both my late parents were born from struggling families and were brought up in time of segregation. I am not going to dive deep on this as it is not about racial deprivation on good systems of making the world a better place for all. Times were tough for them to further with their schooling. So, they were forced to seek employment. They met and got married and lived an incredibly challenging life. I do not want to share their environment of each ones’ home and relationships, but I can say that “a bad painful past can become a happy story”.

This is what I observed. I saw a man that was crying but had no words to express what was troubling him. The father that wanted to do best for his family. Means were enough to offer the best he could, but in his mind, it was not meeting his expectations. The pressure of him to have not dealt with his painful past, his failed dreams, adding us (his children and his wife) was too much to bear, resulting in him leaving for some years. While I was still studying him, I looked on my other side. Here is a woman who is hurt and disappointed by his actions, the breadwinner is now hardly available. She had her own share of hurtful past, also not dealt with, and talents that never saw sunlight. She is trying to keep the house warm and be the best mother she could, but she is struggling. Her words are many to be understood, but she stayed.

And there was me, in my youth. Here is a young woman imitating what was modeled in front of her eyes. Developing to be her mother’s replica and attracting her father’s version in man. She carries her parent’s sorrows in her mind unknowingly and is experiencing her own troubles. This young woman is not only struggling in her relationships but all areas of her life. She is also caught up by the pressures of life, struggling to keep it together, and she ends up living under a mask.

The recess came to an end, it was time to come back home. The house was then filled by voiceless broken people, each one’s mind is in its war zone, hiding their true feelings and emotions, but not for long. No matter how good you think you are at hiding, your hiding place becomes smaller as you normally pile up unresolved issues. It is those past painful wounds that do not get healed. With time it gets extremely septic and ruptures to heat your urges, then the outburst of negativity surfaces.

Moving forward, I joined motherhood 15 years ago…

God gave assurance, showed faithfulness, and made Himself known to the Israelites in Egypt (end of the bad relationship through the plagues), in the Red Sea (the crossing over to the new beginnings), In the wilderness (decluttering and rebuilding). It was all for them to stay on course in their transformation from the old ways, then transition to easily adapt to the new life, by daily developing and positively actioning the new ways of living. They were physically free from oppression but mentally and emotionally chose to remain in captivity. Resistance to change is a foolish choice with results of missing the opportunities of growing your blessings, and we can do differently.

Proverb 22:6 “Train up a child in a way he should go, when he is old, he will not depart from it”.

I lived under masking foolishly and looked like I had it together, conflicted within as I was controlled by urges and blinded by pride to normalise my behaviours. My emotional blindness continually surfaced in my parenting journey. In as much as I was teaching my child good ways of living, I struggled to lead by example. I was saddened to see some repetition of my emotional behaviours from my child. Hypocritically teaching him the good deeds I struggled to present. I was losing a grasp and unaware that I was slowly burying his positive innocent spirit and I needed to bring him back.

Had I not taken steps to transformation, I would be still sadly captured by the old past. That would have kept the wounds of past displeasures alive, and my son would have grown to become a reflection of my past internal turmoil. I needed to change myself first with the purpose of bringing him back whilst still very young. Forgiveness and healing allowed opportunity of starting over. I stepped into the foundation phase of learning, to flex my mind and be willing to learn all of that from the child. I observed the child positive qualities from my son first and embed those qualities back to him.  Learning how to revive my weakened childlike minded qualities from my child (Luke 18: Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it”) empowered me to continually be able to lead him by example and break free from the generational curses of the past.

If we can stop judging ourselves harshly and start loving ourselves, we would be aware that our transformation is not only about us, but mostly to save our children. Our children are the future, tomorrow belongs to them and we need to plant good seeds in them. God wants us to remain undefeated. He wants us to be overcomers of adversities. When we reach barriers, He wants us to always find another way wisely, and sail in our detours boldly and determined. The goal is to be cooperative to phases of transformation and always remember the good God had done (bitter water made sweet, bread from heaven, water from the rock etc), for us to not waiver in our transitional passage.

We are the change makers, making this world a better place for generations to come, and taking the guardianship role positively. Since, it is not only about us but mostly them. And, let us model qualities we would be proud to see our children follow.

Let Us Embrace The Change.

May We All Stay Blessed

8. EXODUS, THE BLANK CANVAS

PART 1: Step Into The Unknown

Numbers 14:11- “And the Lord said to Moses ‘How long will this people despise Me? And how long will they not believe in Me? despite all the signs that I have done among them?”

My late mother had different sizes of jigsaw puzzles that she loved to build. When she worked on them, she would be very still, focused, and uttering no words. I think that it was her moment of emotional purification. Even though the unforeseen of the day-to-day movements were setting her back, nothing would deter her. Regardless of how long it would take her to build, she had patience upon achieving her expectations. The joy of seeing her face light up on her completed work was more fulfilling. The more she challenged herself on assembling difficult pieces, the wiser she would be on planning her day-to-day.

I was emotionally and mentally immature, baffled by the process of my transformation. I never anticipated the stages I would take to declutter my negative past. The step-by-step disentanglement of those negative outlooks that resulted to some people avoiding my presence; led me to a state of panic. Thinking that God was taking forever. I forcefully rushed to achieve my expectations. The more I strategized on “my better ways” of reaching my expectations, the farther I was drifting from the light (Numbers 14:39-45). Despairingly, I noticed that “my better ways”, were leading me to darkness, and I failed to find pleasure and encouragement to enjoy the journey. I was tortured and captured by the same old tedious ways that always left me frustrated with the same old results.

BE PATIENT WITH YOURSELF

God remains unwavering in all our tantrums, He is patient with us, working on us through all the stages of change –Jeremiah 29: 11 “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Revealing to us the extent of the danger, that masking was blindly burying us into. And the journey of spiritual rebuilding has many twists and turns. It is a joy to be given a chance to start over and have new beginnings. Transformation then allows us to slowly let go of control and be entirely dependent on God. It strengthens our faith to evolve with changes. You learn detachment to break off your barriers, and it allows you to become vulnerable while living in harmony.

BE IN THE PRESENT WITH YOURSELF

Luke 12: 35 “Stay dressed for action and keep your lamp burning…”

God removes us from our vision board of expectations to journey us somewhere we never thought of (Exodus 34: 10…” I will do marvels, such as have not been created in all the earth or in any nation”). I had stopped having those awed moments of excitement thinking that the last piece of a puzzle had completely answered my questions. He has these unexpected jigsaw puzzle pieces, which will unveil a portion of what your mind and heart are ready for at that time. Your picture is never complete with Him; it keeps on growing and changing. My journey has taught me that, God does not speak in straight lines, and the best is to be in the present moment.

Living in the present teaches us the flexibility to adapt to the unexpected and wisely make good choices. Humility sways you to stillness and strengthens your connection with God. When we fail to humble ourselves to God and patiently allow Him to gradually unravels all that is dangerously hidden, lurking to creep out with intentions to taint us.  We then resentfully undermine the present (Numbers 11:4-6). It demeans God comparing Him to the old ways. The old ways that were breaking us, keeping us captive, a place we showed feelings of dissatisfaction that we yearned to be set free from. At the end of the day, being rebellious and refusing to connect yourself with this moment, means missing all that good God has prepared for you (Numbers 14: 28-35).

The mysteries of the unexpected are much more enjoyable when one surrenders to God. I put an end to self-reproach that was slyly disheartening my spirit. And, if I had not remained still, focused, I would have not seen the danger that my rebellious actions were cunningly leading me to. Therefore, if we can accept that the vision board, is for us to live by His Great Commandment (Matthew 22:37-39), we can then become the jigsaw puzzle pieces, that effortlessly allows our detours to strengthen us and fulfill His mission (Psalm 37:23 “The steps of a man are established by the Lord when He delights in his way.”)

 It is a great joy that we stood firm, and waited for what was passing to pass, for we have been undeniably blessed by what is lasting last. It is TIME FOR HARVEST.

May God Bless Us All

7. Recognising God In Each Other

Haggai 1:4 “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your panelled houses while this house lies in ruins?”

Raw diamonds come at a lower value, it takes a willing heart that sees its future in its dirt to clean it, shape it, and polish it. Now that you are appealing and radiant be grateful to who invested their heart, effort, and time to bring your sparkling light reflecting life to admiration. No matter how shiny you become, remember back Home.

Home, a place of comfort, where we cannot wait to rush to after the long day’s responsibilities, one gets that eagerness of running to their comfort zone. But looking at the structure of a house, it is built from small pieces of materials to larger scale of materials. Something so small as a nail plays a significant purpose on binding pieces of materials together, to either keep the roof intact or other elements. A home is moreover expressed as a place of dreams, where there are workers that are tirelessly working to ensure that your dreams come to life. A home is where you get your cheerleaders, emotionally supporting you; timekeepers to remind you that you can still make it; financial assistants to provide resources; and law enforcers guiding you to live by the Laws. I regard a home as who believes in you, and never gives up on you. It can be your family, relatives, the community, friends, or your colleague, that each have their role to play in your life.

This can also signify that, a child is taught at school by a Teacher, trained for sport by the Coach, and preached word of God by a Priest etc. So, each one in their profession additional to parents/guardians, plays a vital role of bringing up just one child.

Remember Your God.

Luke 17: 15 “Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with the loud voice”.

We are not our own mirrors; we need each other to inhibit us from devaluing our blessings. Remembering and being thankful to who played a part in your life, shows gratitude to God, and strengthens the interconnection we have in each other. The unity we have with God expressed that; God undeniably blessed me enough to create a need within me for others to fit in for my journey (Luke 10: 33-34 “But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he sat him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him). These are the people that all played their roles in my life, and some I left them without saying “thank you.” Masking obstructed my insight, it brought me closer to people who intentionally took advantage of my weaknesses. I found myself continually engrossed to supporting them, naively expected to be treated the same. I was regrettably pained when I realized that was how those I selfishly left behind felt, when I was disregarded in times of need (Philippians 2:3 “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.”), because I had forgotten to be thankful to God, I had forgotten Home.

Unity means love God back. Loving God back is loving yourself and loving others. In our blindness God sends us our mirrors to reflect who we are inside 2 Kings 5: 13 “Sir,” he said ‘if the prophet has asked you to do something difficult, you would have done it. Do not be too proud to do this simple thing.’ And we often break them and hurt them as they truly say things, we are embarrassed to hear. It is difficult to hear a truth about yourself and rather worthy to take steps towards transforming your life (Proverbs 13:10 “Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.”). When you are humble, you are acknowledging that your achievements come from God’s willingness, and the Helpers He sends more than your capabilities.

Returning on investment first free hearted, greatly empowers one to pay it forward. You value your investors enough, to nurture their investment and be fruitful. Whether it is the investment of time, love, kindness, money, loyalty, or caring, and it is making a great change in your life. Continue with the flow of return on investment and paying it forward by investing in others. Positivity becomes contagious, and effectively exhibits the glory of God in us.

May Our Good God Bless Us All

6. KEEP STARTING OVER AGAIN AND AGAIN…”START OVER”

  Ecclesiastes 1:4 “A generation goes, and a generation comes, but the earth remains forever.”

God is always about new beginnings, re-establishing Himself through us all the time. The creation of God naturally evolves in cycles. The earth rotates once in 24hrs and starts over again and again (Ecclesiastes 1:5 “The sun rises, and the sun goes down, and hasten to the place where it rises.”). A new day is always bringing us new hope to start over and change things for the better: Matthew 6:11 “give us this day our daily bread”. In as much as we are blessed with new days and dominion over His creation Genesis 1: 26, we do not have control of the time. Daniel 2: 21 shows us that God is in control, “He changes times and seasons…” God gives us numerous chances after chances to reset our buttons and starts over again, to learn new things, to make changes in our lives by decluttering the heaviness in our minds. All His new beginnings mean, some of the things will have to die, old ways of doing things and sometimes you leave some people behind with intentions and a hope that they will also wake up and run their races. Some relocate or change their places of employment. Since He wants us to make space for what He is about to bring out to the world through us and for us all, He allows us to go through a transformation.

DETACH AND KEEP MAKING A CHANGE

Genesis 6:8 “But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord”.

I struggled hard to let go of things, stubbornly getting choked by old concepts that were not giving me expected results. My wheel of time kept on rotating, while I was becoming suffocated by my past and losing gravity. I lost myself trying to hold on to old concepts and haphazardly was quick with poor judgment about my future. Trying to control the pace of time, dragging past baggage, and hiding my mistakes, resulting in negative outbursts. Masking gives you temporary control, it builds attachment to the past, hence it is easy to remember past pains and refresh them by reciting them like yesterday’s events. It intentionally blinds you while expanding that “room of disappointment” to make it the loudest voice in our minds. Room of disappointment will always manifest negative realities.  Unmasking and rebuilding helped me to gain strength on detaching myself from my past and brought me closer to God, as He was giving me opportunities on all phases of my transformation to face unresolved issues and deal with them from a changed mind. All phases of a cycle have the beginning and the end, giving you an opportunity to deeply reflect on your life before acting on any judgments of your matters. You find yourself maturing with evolvement and becoming lighter as you now are following Jesus Christ: Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to Me, all who labour and heavily laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your soul. For My yoke is easy, and my burden is light”.

God wants to become the adhesive in our lives, binding us in Truth of His great love, forgiving all our sins (Proverbs 10:12 “Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offenses.”) and allowing the healing to take its process. Starting over became my part of the journey in all areas of my life, helping me to detach, and daily learn to find balance in my life. It gave me a great opportunity of understanding and accept all my flaws while teaching me to have the positive spirit of cooperating with the movement of the world and the Great Law that God sets for us (Exodus 20:1-17, Matthew 22:36).

It is through losing opportunities, broken relationships, incomplete projects, countless mistakes, losing loved ones, and rejections that is teaching me to be a better version of myself and a better version for myself first. And we need not be ashamed of starting over again, not to be afraid of trusting again, and not to doubt loving again.

With Love

The stars and the moon shines for the night, then the morning rises with the beautiful sun to take over. It is a blessing to be woken up by God one more day, to see His glory, and be given another chance of renewing our vows with Him. The luminous rays of the sun, shines for the day, giving us yet another chance to work on ourselves and become better than yesterday. How incredible is His abundant love, when God tenderly overlay us with the moon and the stars to recall the day and give it back to Him with gratitude?

“Keep moving forward”.

May God bless us all

4. Seeking First the Kingdom of God

Matthew 6:23 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you”.


Be as light as a feather and live light-heartedly as the butterfly.
The birds fly beautifully trusting their wings. They eat nutritiously, enough for their bodies and carries no baggage. They fly as high as God designed them and get the best view from up above. The birds are teaching me that “the sky is open.”
There is another wing creature that naturally will capture your eyes when it passes you by. Lately, I find myself daily gazing at them flying in between the trees and as close as my windows. They have this spiritual aura that gives me comfort, hope, faith, and trust. This creature naturally responds to the process of fully living all phases of its transformational cycle. Butterflies are teaching me to “trust the process and keep moving forward”.

YOU ARE HIGHLY FAVOURED

The earth is massive, but it is a tiny speck in the open space of the whole universe. On this small speck there is you and I, highly cherished by God, alive and allowing God to live in us (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Giving Him the place to experience the bodily nature of His creation through us. Giving Him us first to enjoy all the touchable blessings, that He spiritually created while in that process establishing Himself and His kingdom through us.


A kingdom is a place of abundant untouched blessings, a place of peace, a place of everlasting love, a place of tranquility ruled by our only Father God. There is forgiveness, healing, compassion, grace etc., where undying light radiantly shines kindly. This is a place where nothing is impossible.
Seeking first the kingdom of God is becoming Christ like 1 Corinthians 6:15, living light-heartedly, selflessly, and doing the will of our Father, Matthew 6:10. It is living in harmony whilst living amongst distractions, it is trusting God to supply all your needs. It builds patience, knowledge, and wisdom to accept and understand that Jesus Christ is the Lord.

The frustrations from the dissatisfaction of taking control and producing no results, left me no option but surrendering everything to God. Jesus Christ showed me the gap between where I was, and where I desired to be. In between was the gate of my transformation, with a transitional passage that Jesus Christ is daily developing, invigorating my heart, mind, body, and soul for His kingdom. Letting go of control was the most liberating choice I ever made, as I was ready to close my gap to my heart’s desires by unmasking and daily rebuild myself.


LOOK WITHIN YOU, YOU ARE BLESSED
“From the fullness of His grace we have all received one blessing after another” John 1:6.

Masking will distort your vision, blindly it led me to undermine my blessings. Frankly speaking, I had everything that God saw it fit for me, but I focused on what I wanted. And failed to give all areas of my life an opportunity to blossom. The transitional passage showed me how I was acting like a fool. And some of us we do and have acted like fools, thinking we have everything right under our control. Fools because while we are identifying immaturity in others, God is taking all the opportunity of showing us that we are also immature (Luke 6:42 “How can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eyes? You hypocrite, first take out the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye”). Fools because we do not want to look like we do not have it together, yet everything slips right between our fingers. Out into the world, we give false impression and dangerously live under validation from the crowd that feeds our egos. But we are deeply crying and bleeding inside. Masking is a brief time gap filler of many years longing, that quickly disappears and leaves us wondering if we will ever find happiness. Looking outside leads to selfishness and losing a strength to run towards God and be vulnerable to Him. You will miss a grace of positively looking within as His ways are not your ways, Isaiah 55:8-9.
God live inside first (Galatians 2:20 “…It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me…”) and radiate His beauty outwardly while shocking you with unexpected blessings and daily allowing you to be “His Representative”. You will wisely wait patiently while stepping in your journey of self-discovery, daily giving God His praise of what He has blessed you with.

Look at how amazingly God sees us, and still loves us, forgive us, support us and daily calls us to “rise up and walk”

To our mother Tlaleng Siphuka, thank you, breathe life into your light. We love you.

May God Bless us all

13. Realize Your Potential The Garden's Lock

For the first time, since I stepped into my journey of transformation. I am using my voice. As we all know God's path has many turns and we cannot feel stuck and not moved when He makes a turn. We must flow with the movement of the day so we can navigate our way safely with a trust that we are led to righteousness. It is time we engage more on a deeper level and share our stories. May God Bless Us All — Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/thegardenlock/message
  1. 13. Realize Your Potential
  2. 12. Wilderness, A Glass-Half-Full
  3. 11. RED SEA, WE ARE NOW FREE
  4. Love Strengthens Relationships
  5. 9. TOMORROW BELONGS TO OUR CHILDREN

3. Lay Your First Stone of Forgiveness

Hebrews 8:12 “For I will be merciful towards their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.”
We all have a power to leave the past behind and totally wipe it out to have new beginnings.

Standing in front of the mirror and removing everything that hid my true self was a step of hope. Behind that mask we saw all those rusty embedded nails that left me normalizing abnormal behaviors, chocked my life away, with roots that have plunged deep in my heart. It was a moment that cut me deep with shock, denial, and shame. And if not wary, one can choose to be a runner as our God is never a quick fixer, but the only Truth. Not everyone wants to stand and face the reasons of how they ended up choosing to live under the grave of masking. But worthy when you courageously work hard to sprout and try to bloom beautifully even out of that grave.

Jeremiah 30:17 “But I restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the Lord”

Rebuilding a derelict building was a door of trust. I was a building that was ran down by all kinds of storms, neglected, and passer-by labelled me by all types of undesirable names. I felt the intensity of the pain and had to gather the strength and dug to the core of each deep-rooted rusty nail. Scars of my past even became deeper as I was removing the negativity I had housed in my mind. I became angry, and irrationally lack no reason to defend myself and blamed everyone but me. For I had fears and was ashamed to see my broken soul. I was blind and not aware that the wounds of my past that I kept alive were becoming septic under my mask. Quick fixing of the wounds caused confusion and frustration that surfaced negative outlooks, but my God became my Healer.  

A PAST BECOMES A STORY

Matthews 6: 12 “and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sins against us”

It is time to heal from all wounds, it is time to truly seek forgiveness and find it in our hearts to completely forgive those who had done us wrong. We can only honestly heal when we are willing to become defenseless to God and let Him be the only Way. Step by step, He will gradually disentangle yourself and leaves nothing unclean in your body, heart, mind, and your soul.
Laying your first stone of forgiveness, is becoming the light (Matthew 5:14-16), where all is lifted off and no longer blocks your way, nothing and no one is pulling you back. The light removes you from darkness of confusion, from dead weights of your past, and from fear of trusting once again.

Masking deceived my insight to think that I was not a grudge holder. I was quick to forgive and quick on seeking forgiveness. It was a tendency of hurry to escape the consequences, but in that drift, I kept on piling past pains to the depth of my heart and did not allow healing to take its journey. I took things to surface value and would continually retell the story to the one who had treated me unfairly, and that was hurting them back. It kept me in the dark, and I failed to recognize some people’s repentant ways, as I was expecting to hear the words, “I am sorry”.

A grudge is a silent slow poison that plants seed of guilt to who wronged you, but its negative intention is to hurt its holder. Holding a grudge, is keeping the dead weights of past pains that builds up negative feelings. All that negative energy will capture you to have tendencies of acrimony, sinking you to vindictive acts. Thus, there are those who will never surrender until they are certain that people pay for hurting them. They strike back in any way purposely to humiliate those who had done them wrong. Blindly they are unaware that their spiteful actions are walls blocking them to build strong lasting relationships and living in harmony. If not dealt with, that silent cruelty will let you walk with a diminishing light that the devil keeps blowing away, to escalate your anger into more hellish ways.
I had learnt that dwelling in past was not my comfort but the devil, deceiving me to not look at all the good that God had done for me. In order for me to let go, I had to dig my past and observe what I was holding on to. I saw people that had showed remorse, but I was blind to acknowledge, I saw people that had moved on with their lives, some had totally forgotten that I had an encounter with them. With no doubt I had to answer my questions: “why I was still living in the past, what was I angry for, and was I aware that I had also hurt others too?”

“It is Mine to avenge, I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them.” Deuteronomy 32:35. We will all have our turn of paying for our transgression and no one is immune to such, and it is that moment where we will need to show love to one another. Remember that when one faces the wrath of God and you are given a chance to help, help them. Be bigger than the challenges you faced with anyone, saying “aha” and not forgive, will never heal our wounds but will build us to becoming more resentful. Resentment blocks our blessing because whatever our hearts give out to the world, it will always come back to us.

ARISE, YOU CAN LIVE AGAIN!
To be created in God’s image and likeness (Genesis 1: 27) is becoming the light (Matthew 5:14-16) and walking in the Light (John 12:35) “For a little while longer the Light is among you. Walk while you have the Light, so that darkness will not overtake you; he who walks in the darkness does not know where he goes.” This clearly expresses that, we were not born with negative outlooks of bitterness, grudge, pride, stubbornness, envy etc. but our journeys of adversities, emotional blindness, the choices we made, led us to lose our identities. We lived under masking unaware that we were burying our true selves. And to anyone going through his/her journey of transformation, hold on against all the trials you will be going through, believe that love wins at the end and trust God when He say “Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breadth in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord.” Ezekiel 37: 5-6. It is never late to change our ways; He measures no sins. In His arms we are safe, in His heart we find love, and in His mind; we are at peace.

And you will only find fulfilment when you know that, when you lay your first stone of forgiveness, then healing brings calmness if your rebuilding is grounded on “seeking first the kingdom of God” Matthews 6:33.

May God Bless Us All

“Wounds of the past are healed through the pain that comes with birthing forgiveness light, as it brings joy when you become the light that shines to strengthen others.”

2. REBUILDING

Isaiah 9:10 “the bricks have fallen down, but we will rebuild with smooth stones; the sycamores have been cut down, but we will replace them with cedars.’’


Once you begin to unmask, you will be removing the emotional blindness, and gaining the strength to carry your light. Your light will clear your path directing you to where you should dig out the deep-rooted negative seeds of your past, which will be revealing the true nakedness of your broken soul. Your willpower will fuel life into your light, gradually strengthening you to rebuild your relationship with God, while He raises you into the most incredible dimension.

This was the beginning of my transformation
There is no time set on how long a person should take to transform from any kind of their past, as we cannot measure the depth of each one’s scars except our own. Even though the storms attack us internally and leave damage on
the public display, let that strengthen you to continually rebuild yourself. It is expected that when you start to transform, the forces of negativity will intensely fight you to break down. Sadly, some lose courage and do not come back from the fall, while others with tenacity will fight off the devil who will attempt to imprison them into darkness.

Let us remember that masking aimed to bury my uniqueness and threw me into disarray so that I focus on my failures, with the intent to produce negative outlooks. What was more was, I was unintentionally normalizing immoral behaviors. And many of us have lived under a mask for an exceptionally long time.

SHOW ME THE GATE TO MY TRANSFORMATION

Matthew 7:13 “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”
God showed me the gate to my transformation, to be someone I had never thought I could be, on the contrary, I was truly fearful of a change. I feared letting go of what was familiar. In my past, I settled on self-serving (masking) temporary solutions that had returned emptiness and failed to undress deep-rooted problems. I struggled to comfort myself with trusting God and not seeing where I was going. In my mind, being in control was my tool that I hoped would always prepare myself for the unforeseen, but it was distorting my sight.

I was disheartened and had habits of becoming short-sighted with high expectations, while I continued devoting myself to people that rejected me. Rejections built confusion that took over my mind. For a while, I wondered if God was certain about me, maybe God made a mistake about me. In as much as one would want to think differently, by starting to appreciate what is in front of them and change their ways. However, if you do not consistently talk positively to yourself, then it is easy to be drawn into the darkness. Amazingly, even in that darkness there was something burning inside telling me that life can be different, but I struggled to understood how I could let go and let God lead.

2 Samuel 6:10 “So, David was not willing to take the ark of the Lord into the City of David. But David took it aside to the house of Obed-Edom the Gittite. And the ark of the Lord remained in the house of Obed Edom the Gittite three months, and the Lord blessed Obed-Edom and all his household.”

I would be insincere to say there was no help. God came to me in many forms, but the mind was not ready to receive with understanding, I was not ready. God worked on me from the distance but too close for my eyes to observe and my ears to receive. God placed me in the center of those that He continued to bless with all my hearts desires, just to provoke me and to get my attention. These are the people that I am close to in my neighborhood, my family, my friends, and my colleagues. Through the darkness of wanting to break free and seeing others receiving their blessings, and my past that I blindly kept hanging alive in my face. I was unaware that I was able to move mountains. I suppose, God was giving me a glimpse of the life I could have and enjoy. In my immaturity of not knowing how to handle blessings, keeping the past alive, and my low self-esteem the devil continued building comfort while I was leaving damage behind with my immoral behaviors.
Frustration started to pervade in me, as I in the past held on tight to my concepts that never had pleasing returns (Haggai 1:6-11 “You have sworn much and harvested little. You eat, but you never have enough, you drink, but you never have your fill. You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm. And he who earns wages does so to put them into a bag with holes”). I felt embarrassed and had pride, stubbornly refusing to cry for help and the devil cunningly used my past against me. When I broke off the discomfort, the forces of negativity pushed harder blowing away and almost killing every part of my life.
It is amidst the inevitable storms and seeing that I was losing the people I love, that left me with no option but to confess that “I did not know what I was doing.” And storms ceased. As painfully and confusing as you will feel, but when you start accepting, you will then see sunshine of hope

BE OPEN-MINDED AND LIVE LIGHTHEARTED

The change you want to see in your life will start with how you emotionally see your past. And God will never miss an opportunity to help us rebuild our ruined selves more improved than before. This is the time when one needs to be open-minded and gradually dig deep and assess the consequences of the damages. I searched myself deeply on how I was perceived by those I had crossed paths with, and I was ready to be led on rebuilding myself.


Nehemiah 6: 13 ‘’for this purpose he was hired, that I should be afraid and act in this way and sin, and so they could give me a name in order to taunt me.”
Rebuilding is securing your Oneness covering your whole self, it is finding fulfillment with God. And God was ready to work on me and work with me on restoring myself. My willingness enabled God to carry me through the process. God will gradually reveal your truthfulness and strengthen your faith through your transitional passage to carry the mission to fulfilment (Matthew 24:13 “But the one who endures to the end will be saved”). Transitional passage thorns the devil to awaken negative forces. Regrettably, the devil sends them to steal your talents, destroy your plans, and kill your dreams. God allows these tests to provoke and push you out harder on building your hunger to break off from captivity. You will be reminded of your past, you will be mocked, you will be lured, you will be threatened, and you will be distracted in whatever form with a purpose to discourage you from progressing.
Nehemiah 6:3 “I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and come down to you”?
These moments of intimidation triggered eagerness to daily call on God. Every step you take of transformation, comes with tests that one will need to stand against all the odds. I had learned the mistakes I made in my transformation steps; God was the Light showing me hidden negative nails I needed to dig out. Once we realize that rebuilding ourselves is our daily devotion to God, God unquestionably daily grows us to be better people birthing favorableness in us and blessing us in abundance of what we had lost. With every step I took the weight became lighter, my eyes started to see clearer, and it is a daily mission to be a better person.

SEE THE GLORY OF GOD

It is worthy to understand that rebuilding, starts with healing from all your past pains by “Laying Your First Stone of Forgiveness.” Forgiveness is rebuilding the trust from those you had wronged and give opportunity to those who had done you wrong by accepting their repentant ways. It is allowing God to work on you first, strengthening you up to take the knocks from those you had mistreated, and continue giving them opportunity to welcome the changing you. And we all have a power to leave the past behind.
I have now learned that people that bled the most trying to close my wounds are left with deeper scars. And may God continue to bless them, I love you all and I ask for forgiveness.

Haggai 2:3 “Who is left among you who saw this house in its former glory? How do you see it now? Is it not as nothing in your eye.?”
We will no longer be called by our pasts, as we will be called “The One in Christ”(Galatians 3:28) daily driving the mission to fruition for the glory of God to be seen through us all.

May God Bless Us All

“Raw diamonds come at a lower value. It takes a willing heart that sees the value in its dirt to clean it, shape it and polish it. Now that you are appealing and radiant be grateful to the One who invested their heart, effort, and time to bring your sparkling light reflecting life to admiration. No matter how shiny you become, remember back Home.”

1. Masking Is A Grave

Matthews 5:14-16 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven”

We light up the world in distinct ways with a purpose to inspire, heal, motivate, support, care, comfort, protect and guide each other. Our daily life influences how we breathe life to our lights and through each other’s light. The choices we make in life can graciously continue to light up our lights or unbearably weaken them.

This is my journey
A journey that drowned me down to valleys of adversities and lifted me up to triumph. I fell and got up countless times until I could stand still and found myself in God. Amid my storms, God rose me up high to reach my light and showed me the gate to my transformation.
Each person is born with their own uniqueness that makes them stand out from the rest. Identifying your distinctiveness can be a daunting journey. It is a journey where some are fortunate to be taught whilst young how to identify and nurture their seed; while some will be going through adversities to identify who they truly are. How we choose to emotionally see our journey of adversities, will either strengthen us to build more faith or will blind us to much darkness of agony.

Adversity is hardening. It had compelled some to make good decisions of rebuilding their faith and be resilient, and never let any past failures, mistakes, or rejections stand in their way. Regardless of all the odds that come against them, they strive until they finally succeed. Some likewise positively try to rebuild their faith, however reliving their past emotionally blinds them to feel intimidated, insecure, discouraged, not worthy, etc. Blindly, they negatively perceive not seeing success in their journey and are incapable of trying once more, then they hide under a mask, and hopelessly choose to be either:

  • Feeble and always looking for an easy way and quick on giving up,
  • Conniving and ruthless by going behind people to steal what is not theirs,
  • Confused and hide their suffering by becoming excessively selfless or
  • Manipulative with intentions of being pitied.
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The absence of appreciating the outcomes of my attempt to identify my distinctiveness, and failure in accepting the status of my life led me to conceal my feelings under a mask. Undesirably I focused on my adversities and past mistakes while masking was weakening my light. For I was far from God; I did not know who God was and became ashamed of opening my heart to God. I blindly allowed the rowdiest negative past of my upbringing, of numerous futile attempts, of my age and my level of education, to distort how I perceived things. Masking quietly was burying myself in darkness. The darkness of suffering in silence caged me to a deep lonely, cold, and narrow grave, while my mind was becoming a war zone of confusion. I was emotionally in the dark and battled to hear God, while unreasonably becoming excessively selfless trying to be there for everyone, as I struggled to save myself. The devil created comfort out of my discomfort of being ashamed and slyly blindfolded myself to normalize the abnormal behaviors.

So, masking disconnects you from yourself and makes you live two worlds, what you want people to pay attention to and what you are suffering from. It is a darkness where some dive deep and struggle to come back and would resort to killing their pain, mistakes, and failures through activities that draws them strongly to becoming addicted. I struggled hard to understand and appreciate what it meant for me to be created in God’s likeness and image: Genesis 1:27 (So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them).


Living under a mask controlled myself to make poor judgments about my life. In as much as I would try to live positively, I blindly allowed my mind to be a secret dwelling of negative seeds of my past deprivations, insecurities, weaknesses, and fears. The lack of confidence led me to be discouraged and I would usually procrastinate or self-sabotage my dreams. My insecurities crushed inclinations of committing to any goals.

The downside of masking was, I was quick to act without thinking things through. In my reasoning, I was slowly losing my identity. Masking imprisons one’s mind with the intent to produce negative outlooks. You find yourself normalizing the abnormal behaviors insensitively pushing others to accept you as you are. The results will give you name(s) and you cannot hide your stunts of:
• bitterness
• grudge
• dislike
• envy,
• pride,
• anger,
• stubbornness,
• ego,
• co-dependency or
• deflecting etc.
Masking shadowed my path on finding a harmonious way of overcoming my period of unfruitfulness. It is that deep-rooted negative growing web, cutting through people’s hearts spreading and infecting other parts of our lives. It infused undesirable attitudes that were hurting the people I love. Stubbornness became my tendency to take control of things, it broke me apart inside, but I had pride and would not admit that I was drowning. Despite that, God will never give up on us and He never gave up on me. God will always provide us with opportunities to correct our wrongs and to remove us from immoral behaviors that can hurt others.

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I blindly masked because I failed spiritually on how I can emotionally relate to my period of want. Due to that, I struggle to accept my season of lack. I was unproductive in Religion, Relationships, and Finance. Impulsively keeping my past alive led me to a poor understanding of how I can set my goals. Impatiently allowed conformity of societal standards drove me to be disconcerted thinking that I was running out of time, and never gave my dreams a chance to flourish. Though I understood the Proverbs of Solomon (Proverbs 16: 1) saying “The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord,” I still became critical because I was angry and blindly thought my blessings were not enough.
Outwardly, masking hardened me from asking, though my heart’s desires were troubling my mind. I suffered by allowing my past to stand in my way and became discerning on God’s willingness to bless me. I gradually continued neglecting my light under my mask. In a negative perception of how I saw God, my dreams of living my true self and strengthening up my light seemed unachievable. Because I continued reliving my past disappointments. Reliving the past triggered doubts that manifested negative feelings to life without a challenge. It brought storms that came gushing, and I found myself stifling under my mask. It shattered my heart. The unnecessary pressure we impose on ourselves; the negative perception we have about God, disrupt our thinking. Although God knows our desires, He wants to hear our hearts truthfully. I took a decision to change my mind and surrendered everything and sought God. – Matthew 11:28-30 (Come to Me, all who labor and are heavily laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light). God wants us to find confidence and courage in trusting Him with all our lives and to trust ourselves in Him.

LET YOUR PAST CHANGE YOUR FUTURE

Surrendering my life gave me the strength to plan my future with a goal of bringing to life my uniqueness and achieving all areas of my dreams; then identifying the undesirable behaviors that had locked out my opportunities. I willingly sought Him first “Matthew 6:33 “But seek first, the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” and He took a lead. Opening my heart to God gave me the strength to uncover myself and cleared my eyes. The positive spirit strengthened me to plead for forgiveness from God first and be grateful; to admit my failures; to identify and remove the negative seeds I had housed in my mind; to see the damages I had done and to be daily taught on how I can rebuild myself.

God is pleased when we directly respond to Him like Solomon said “Give me now wisdom and knowledge…” 2 Chronicles 1:10 God wants to show us how we can control and change our thinking and to focus on how we can rebuild our damaged selves.

God Bless Us All

“A light cannot be caged no matter how emotionally blinded we become. It breaks off the shells we hide behind and measures no deeds of the past. Follow the rays of the light, they are there to direct you to God”

13. Realize Your Potential The Garden's Lock

For the first time, since I stepped into my journey of transformation. I am using my voice. As we all know God's path has many turns and we cannot feel stuck and not moved when He makes a turn. We must flow with the movement of the day so we can navigate our way safely with a trust that we are led to righteousness. It is time we engage more on a deeper level and share our stories. May God Bless Us All — Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/thegardenlock/message
  1. 13. Realize Your Potential
  2. 12. Wilderness, A Glass-Half-Full
  3. 11. RED SEA, WE ARE NOW FREE
  4. Love Strengthens Relationships
  5. 9. TOMORROW BELONGS TO OUR CHILDREN

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