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Africa, Poetry and Love Lessons from Experiences Love and Christianity Nature opinion reflection Series

Self Confidence

When you believe in yourself anything is possible.

Why not?

If you are lucky enough to find your passion, then how could giving up be an option? Giving up means accepting a lifetime of wondering what could have happened if you just believed in yourself enough to follow through. It doesn’t matter how fast or slow you go, just keep going and don’t lose hope.

But you may not achieve much if you are not self confident. So let’s consider attributes of a self confident person.

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Attributes of a self confident person

Smile: For me, smiles are facial dresses. People love and admire people who smile. Not the one that begins and ends with the mouth, the one that starts from the eyes. Genuine, loving smile attracts people, creates friendship and unlocks doors! Be a genuinely happy person and show it by smiling at people. Smiling makes one confident.

Humility: Humble people don’t lack self confidence! In fact it takes humility to have self confidence. When you learn to accommodate all class of people, you learn to serve others. That makes you grow dynamic and open minded. You also learn to be respectful and submissive to authorities.

Confidence: Confident people are attractive any time. Knowing who you are, pursuing your dreams, vision, passion and goals makes you a confident person worth investing in. When you find your passion you approach life with a positive mind set. You become energetic and believe in yourself. You have a sound self esteem and people are irresistibly drawn to you.

Friendliness: Being friendly is different from being desperate. When you go out, attend positive programmes, conferences, seminars, workshops, symposiums and serve in your local church or volunteer, you build a network and grow your confidence. So enjoy meeting people and getting to know them purely for friendship.

Generosity: Be generous to people. Be generous with your smile, love, talent, service, money, prayers, whatever you have that can bless lives. Generous people are like magnets, they never lack admirers. Compassion is a beautiful virtue. It builds self confidence.

Forgiveness: Forgive your past. Forgive all who disappointed you. Practice advance forgiveness, forgive people before they hurt you, because more people will offend you. If you find it difficult forgiving people, you will grow bitter and that kills self confidence when people stay away from you.

Intelligence: People like and admire intelligent people. Know when, how and where to talk. Know what is going on around you. Read about every topic. Know a little of everything. Intelligence builds self esteem.

Neatness: Dirtiness does no good. A disorganized and rough person lacks coordination to say the least! Take good care of yourself. Haircuts are essential. Tattoos and rings are not made for everyone. Appearing neat and presentable boosts self confidence. Because you don’t need to worry how you look or smell. Is it not said that cleanliness is next to godliness?

Dress sense: Wear something that fits you, not what is in vogue. Get a good tailor who can sew clothes that fits your body shape. Learn about your body shape and wear something that flatters your figure. Make-ups should be moderate. A good dress sense makes you sweet to look at and simply irresistible! Remember, the way you dress is the way you will be addressed.

Love yourself: You can’t love others if you don’t love yourself. Celebrate yourself and your uniqueness. Accept yourself the way you are, because you are simply the best. No one will be as unique as you. Don’t envy people because not everyone has what you have.

Godliness: Godly people carry golden virtues. Those virtues are in fact the summary of all attributes listed here. Honestly people find good godly people irresistible.

There’s a goldmine in you!

Take charge now. Start working on that talent. Bring your ideas to life and never stop believing in you. If not now, when? If not you, who?

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Africa culture/tradition education lifestyle

Successful Vs Unsuccessful people (Images)

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culture/tradition education lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 31: Faith 2

To believe a thing impossible is to make it so. French Proverb.

Indeed, the positive thinker of faith in God, sees the invisible, feels the intangible and achieves the impossible.

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Africa education lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Madagascar’s Covid-19 Cure

It’s no more news that Madagascar found a cure for Covid-19 and that some African governments are reaching out to purchase some. I think that the WHO Madagascar office should work with these people to ensure that the cure is potent against Covid-19. Note that the cure was prepared from traditional herbs and Africa has a long history in curing ailments through use of herbs, barks, leaves, fruits and roots. This might just be the answer or direction the world seek. Support Africa.

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Africa education folklore lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Self Reflection 30: Wisdom

Men should see you and marvel on how you do things. How you handle your time, money, friends and relationships and enemies, manage people and your lifestyle. Wisdom is a spirit. Wisdom giveth life to those that have it.

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lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 29: Perseverance

Fall seven times and stand up eight.

–Japanese Proverb

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Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 28: Humility

The way up is down. You don’t know how strong you are until you forgive someone who is not sorry for what he/she did or until you accept an apology that was never given. That is real strength.

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lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral

Self Reflection 27: Laughter

The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.

-Nicolas Chamfort
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Africa culture/tradition education lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 26: Be Kind

Be generous with kind words and deeds.

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education lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Self Reflection 25: Diligence

If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.

_Martin Luther King Jr

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Africa culture/tradition education lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Self Reflection 24: Be Strong, Be Yourself

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment”_Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Nostalgia: Traveling memories

I remember my first attempt at hunting. I was a little boy then and just arrived my hometown for holidays. It was fun and I was glad I went home. As a town boy I had little experience in hunting and general country life. Traveling home was a great way to get in touch with my culture and loved ones. My granny lived in the countryside. I was always excited to see her, she was the reason I went home then. She was kind, generous and thoughtful of others. She always spared me some fish from her food basket. I was her boy and always sit looking at her pretty face each time she made dinner. The memories of her soup still make me salivate. How I miss those days. I wish I could pen down the exact feelings but it can’t be expressed in that manner. It can only be felt. True happiness grow from simple and funny things.

School holidays was an opportunity for traveling. I enjoyed every bit of it. The excitement to pack, to watch the clouds ride past, to eat my hometown’s egusi biscuits, to play with many kids and dream of killing a lion in the forest was enough to drive me home. I always fantasized, I always imagined. I dreamed too. This must be the origin of my love for traveling. Most times we traveled through rail and other times by road. The roads then were much better and I love the feel of fresh wind against my face. I really loved traveling with my aunt to stay with granny (God rest their beautiful souls).

I remember hunting with my playmates. We could hunt, swim, fish, dance, play games, farm and climb trees. We even played in the rain. We hunted anything available, lizards, rats, flies, bugs, grasshoppers and ants. I as a person, had a soft spot for living things. I could collect and study them. As a kid I couldn’t keep my captive pets alive because they won’t eat the food I offered them. Well, I cried each time I lost an insect. My parents thought I would become a medical doctor, but I wasn’t destined for that. My curiosity was something else. I wasn’t good in fixing inanimate objects (fans and TeeVee sets) like my elder brothers but I was more interested in life itself.

There were stories told by my aunt and granny. I also learned of Biafra from old veterans. Most of my friends were the elderly. While I loved hanging out with them I learned a lot from their stories. I imagined life in the time of no civilization. My aunt was my favourite story teller. She acquainted me with tricks of Nnabe, the cunny Tortoise. She even told me I was the reincarnation of her father and wished I met him and I wish I did too. He was a great man indeed. He farmed great expanses of land and had big yam barns, diji, he was also a great hunter, dinta, he was stubborn and courageous. I learned he fought in Hitler’s War in Libya and modern day Israel. My mom still retells her favourite story of how he beat up a racist who always intimidated black soldiers. It’s a good laugh. Maybe I will tell it some day.

I remember with joy, how fast things go by, how I miss those good nomad days and how life has changed. But beautiful memories still flood my mind. I’m grateful to have them.

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Africa culture/tradition education lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 23: Generosity

Spare a coat, clothe the naked
Spare a spoon, feed the hungry

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Lessons from Experiences lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 22: Get Knowledge 2

A lack of knowledge creates fear, seeking knowledge creates courage.

NB: To reject something you know nothing about is ignorance.

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culture/tradition lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 20: Dream

If you can dream it, you can do it

_Walt Disney

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 19: Get Knowledge

Not to know is bad, not to wish to know is worse. African proverb.

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Africa education lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry

Covid-19 Update in Nigeria

The virus is still at large and people move about freely as usual. Some news agencies reveal frightening figures. I can’t confirm these figures yet. Most public places; markets, schools and religious places are open.

Please keep us in your prayers. For those without Africa we have you in our thoughts too. Stay safe everyone.

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culture/tradition lifestyle Nature Series

Self Reflection 17: Companionship

Surround yourself with worthy people. Your network is your net worth.

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culture/tradition education lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral

Self Reflection 16: Look beyond

Look beyond the mirror called self.

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culture/tradition education lifestyle Nature Pastoral

Self Reflection 15: Compassion

Consideration for others is the basis of a good life, a good society.

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Africa education lifestyle

Update: Covid19 in Africa

This image from CGTN Africa show African countries with confirmed Covid19 cases.

Stay safe everyone.

#coronakindness

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culture/tradition lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 14: Courage

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.

Lao Tzu
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culture/tradition education lifestyle Pastoral

The Magic in a Smile

A smile is the prettiest thing you can wear. Let me tell you a story of how my experience got me an intern position in a leading Nigerian bank. In 2010, I was privileged to sit for a recruitment test in my school. The test was supervised by representatives of Diamond Bank Nigeria PLC, now Access Bank Nigeria PLC, a major financial services provider, who were scouting for interns. About 2000 applicants were pre-selected from different departments. I remember that the first test was a written essay and as someone who enjoyed writing, I found it easy to navigate through. The next day, applicants were asked to check a shortlist pasted on the notice board. We were advised to wait for an open interview if our names appeared on the list. I was nervous, and wasn’t sure that I would make it as other applicants were as good as myself. Anyway, when I checked and saw that I was among the shortlisted 99 applicants, I knew that I had to face one more hurdle: the interview. At first I was happy that my essay was good enough. But there was no time to prepare for the interview, I could only adjust my shirt while observing myself from the hall window.

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Few hours later we were ushered into school auditorium. As it was an open interview, the academic faculty were invited to see our performance. It was a long wait for me, as my name fell somewhere between 50-60 in the list. I remember how I felt when my time finally came. As the interviewer walked over to me, my hands shook in fear. To contain this, I shoved my fingers into my trouser pockets,  but it wouldn’t stop! So I pulled them out and decided to face the panel. The interviewer observed my dressing and when he was close I smiled, nervously. He nodded and ticked something on his book. When he raised his head he asked me a question on math. Thankfully, I had experience teaching algebra. So I gave him an answer after solving the problem on paper.He disagreed with my first answer. I attempted the question again and again. I continued trying as he said no each time I gave a wrong answer. Luckily, I got the answer before my interview time could elapse. I thought as I took time to get the answer I wouldn’t make it to the last list. When I sat down, my seat mates offered me handshakes and said I answered the toughest question in the interview.   When the last candidate was interviewed it was past 7PM in the evening. It was then that the interviewer and his crew called out the names of successful candidates. 50 of 99 applicants made it through and I was one of them! It was an exciting and unforgettable moment for me. The interviewer congratulated us and explained why we were selected. First, we smiled. As providing good service and customer satisfaction are central to bank ethics; working with the public required patience, understanding and tolerance. Also some were selected for their persistence, appearance or determination.Few months later I received a message for me to report to Imo State Secretariat Mini branch, Owerri, Nigeria as Cash Services Representative. Indeed, smiles can create doors where they never existed and when knowledge fail, smiles give confidence to carry on.

***

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Africa culture/tradition education lifestyle Pastoral Series

Thoughts: Friends Vs Foes 2

After watching this funny video I concluded that people are not always what they seem. Friends, colleagues and even family members may sabotage someone’s effort thereby becoming a hindrance to that person’s progress. Keep in mind that we can achieve progress when everyone in our boat is rowing with and not against us.

***

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Africa culture/tradition folklore lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 11: Feed your Faith

Feed your faith, starve your doubts.

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore lifestyle Nature Pastoral Poetry Series

Dealing with Anger and Frustration

I compiled what worked for me in dealing with anger and frustration, I hope they work for others too.

The first thing I do when I’m angry is to walk away. I hold back the urge to argue, reply or fight back even when I’m clearly right. When I’m angry I ignore the offender and will likely leave the area if the provocation become unbearable.

Sometimes cheerful company can heal. I hang out with people who take my happiness as theirs. Good friends care so much that they offer all kinds of gift, play and jokes to make me smile.

Faith is a strong factor in reversing frustrations to great mood. If you are religious, handing your pain to God may be a good anger therapy, if not the best. When provoked or frustrated I say a word of prayer and that makes me feel much better.

You must have noticed how keen I’m about food. Honestly, if you love food like I do, you may agree that good food can do wonders! If you are angry it may be that you are hungry, just saying. It’s nice to treat yourself to great delicacies. Cook for yourself, maybe try new dishes and buy yourself a glass of chilled wine or yoghurt.

Think about or visit places that you love or remind you of successful events or ventures you were part of. Also, talk to anger management specialists. For me, I visit quiet places or older people/friends.

Do you have a hobby, talent, pet or job that you enjoy? Sing, write, dance, play, swim, cycle, hike, drink, eat, do more of anything that gives you joy whenever you feel the pangs of gloom. I remember writing a lot of poems when I was heartbroken and it did save me from more stress. Just do that thing that makes you happy.

From here it will be a good night.

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culture/tradition education lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 7: Plan

Plans not executed are as good as failure.

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culture/tradition lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 6: Watch and Pray

Never relax your guard: watch and pray.

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Africa culture/tradition folklore lifestyle Nature Pastoral Series

Self Reflection 5: Be contented

There’s nothing wrong in helping, giving away roses, gifts and love. People may take these for granted, be contented to being the good person you are.

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culture/tradition lifestyle Love and Christianity Nature

Take a Break

Do you feel overwhelmed by life’s stress? Then it’s time to take a break. Here are some recommended tips to stay relaxed:

1. Take a nap: It’s obvious that our body system is designed for rest. So enjoying some sleep is a good way to let off steam.

2. Water, Water and more Water : Water is life. The Earth and human body system is made up of water. So we can see the link between human beings and water. Some headache and stress can be fixed just by drinking a cup of water!

3. Exercise: Exercises are a great way to reduce stress. I remember that each morning I took a jog I tend to be proactive through the whole day.

4. Evening walks/Hangouts/Friends: Anytime I feel overwhelmed with work, I try to hangout with colleagues and friends. This normally takes place somewhere away from workplace or home.

5. Family: I’m a strong believer in the positive energy family can give. I know that families differ but if you really enjoy family time, you might find it comforting. I try to loosen up by talking to family members. We discuss warm memories and these memories are pleasant and gives a comforting feel.

6. Then I eat too: Hunger may cause stress to people. Trying to enjoy a well prepared and balanced meal can make one feel good. I’m a witness.

7. Music/Movies: Soft music can heal. Everyone have got songs that when it plays brings succour to them.

Take time to take care of yourself and to make yourself comfortable. You are the architect of your own well-being and comfort.

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Africa culture/tradition

Weirdest Snacks in Africa

Here are some of the weirdest snacks you can find in Africa.

Palm Grubs: Yuck, I know right? Some of the grubs can grow big enough to fit in one mouthful. The grubs are found in dead and decaying palm and raffia trees. Some people eat the grubs alive but to be on a safer side I prefer salted and fried grubs. It’s oily and crunchy. So yummy! 😋

Winged Termites: Come on guys, don’t say Eew! This one is really really tasty. It’s probably the favorite living snack in Africa. When it is garnished with pepper, onion and other spices it can be addictive. The insects are flying termites seeking new places to start a colony. When the nuptial flight commence, most won’t have the chance to mate. In the trail they fall prey to many animals, ranging from birds to lizards, ants to frogs and man! 🤨

Millipedes: Okay guys. I know no one really wants anything with these creepy guys as their distant cousins are notoriously venomnous. I have never tasted any and I don’t think I want to. I learned that some species of Millipedes are boiled with yams which gives a unique taste and color to the food. No thank you, I will pass. 🙄

Crickets and Grasshoppers: Never have I tasted any of these but I do play with them. These insects live in the bush and can elude their hunter easily. So most times they are caught in the night. To prepare, it is salted and fried just like the grubs.

There are many weird and living snacks which will come later. So when you are in Africa, try to check out our weird snacks. I bet you will be glad you did! Have a good night/day. 😴

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Africa Nature

Visit Africa: Masai Mara

Video from Guardian TV

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Lessons from Experiences Love and Christianity Uncategorized

Positive Attitude to Life: Gratitude

Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life; not so much by what happens to you as by the way your mind looks at what happened- John Miller.

Be thankful for all the gifts of life. We can hear birds sing and smell the flowers scent. We can talk, we can eat! We can smile and feel the touch of loved ones. There’s so much to be thankful for.

Don’t forget that happiness is not something you find, it is what you create. Don’t let past and present events deprive you the sweet things in life. Even in pain we have the capacity to create happiness.

Remember the Joy of the Lord is your strength. (Nehemiah 8.10)

Good morning and have a happy day!

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Africa education Lessons from Experiences

Thoughts on Teaching Math

Consider the first time you taught someone how to ride a bicycle or did any form of teaching. It wasn’t easy, was it? Teaching is a stressful job. Teaching math is much more stressful.

Math is in everything you do! Before trying to explain this, I make the students relax. Many students fear the subject, so some jokes may put them at ease. I discuss the roles math play in their daily lives; how proper calculations produce good cooking, timely and efficient decisions and even in choosing friends! These intros makes them more interested. I also talk about the real life application, drawing examples from solved problems. While Logic work for Legal Practitioners, Bearing, Longitudes and Latitudes work for Pilots and Sailors. Simple Interest and Annuities work for Accountants, Bankers and investors. Ones approach to teaching will either make the students interested in learning or put them off, completely.

Creativity, flexibility, patience, tolerance and kindness are qualities a teacher must have. A teacher should have some sense of humour too. BTW 1+1 is not 3. It’s between 1 and 4.

I must prepare for Monday. Take care everyone.

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Lessons from Experiences Love and Christianity

Why it is important to have a plan in life with Piere Ingrams.

Piere Ingrams says replace bad habits with good ones.

From Ohio, USA, Piere takes us on why it is important to have a plan.

Good morning from Africa!

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Uncategorized

Look beyond your past

In the morning I wrote a hasty poem titled “Looking Beyond”. I also tried to finish a large chapter of a book I was reading. This book (God’s Generals by Roberts Liardon) told stories of how great men and women once wallowed in shame, failure and defeat. It also narrated how their resilience, patience, hardwork and faith brought them their breakthrough.

Many factors contribute to a person’s failure. Unpreparedness, laziness, procrastination, faithlessness, not paying attention to details and more. But I am just concerned with what happens after each failure?

I do relate to failure. Most people do. In my case, I have lost count of the number of job/scholarship applications that was unsuccessful. I can recall writing admission tests four times before getting into the University. The year I got admitted, I was the first in the admission list! That same year, I was admitted in three different schools! So success came because I continued trying. Failure itself is a tonic for success.

People who constantly look back to the past find it hard to move on. Whatever happened in the past should remain there. Learn from past mistakes and try again. Just look beyond your past.

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Love and Christianity Uncategorized

Self-Control

The secret of surviving tough times is your response to them – Dr Chris Kpakpovwe

The problems of life is not the problem itself. The problem is our reaction to the problem. We can allow problems to grind us to self pity or depression or it can become our stepping stone to progress/creative new thinking.

When you are in the middle of a trial, you don’t want emotions to dictate your actions, for the same reason a truck driver on the highway doesn’t want his cargo to dictate the ride. When that cargo starts shifting and sliding back and forth, the driver soon has a truck that is out of control: swerving back and forth, but the driver refuses to be controlled by the cargo- Tony Evans.

Refuse to get stuck in the negatives of life. Good morning from Africa.

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Africa culture/tradition education folklore Igbo culture Pastoral Uncategorized

African Folktale: the Crows and the Cuckoo

It is evening here and I feel like telling you a story. Bring your mat, come sit with me outside, by the fireside and let us enjoy the night breeze.

Once upon a time there lived a set of Crows which plundered farms. Each day the farmers try to catch the Crows to no avail, for the Crows moved in droves. In this same town lived a timid Cuckoo. The Cuckoo became friends with a Crow who introduced him to his group. Now the Cuckoo ate the groups food but whenever they went to plunder he seldom followed.

One day, a traveller arrived the town and during his stay, observed the Crows and offered to help the town. He got a big white net and with the help of farmers tied it on several tall trees which surrounded many farms. It was a trap.

As the Crows planned the next attack, they convinced the Cuckoo to join them. Off they all flew. When they settled to eat, the hidden farmers dropped the nets and it came crashing down on the birds. None could escape!

As the farmers caught the Crows they saw a Cuckoo among them. ‘How come?’ They asked in surprise. But all the Cuckoo could do was cry and beg for mercy. The angry farmers won’t even listen. They destroyed the Crows with the Cuckoo.

Morals : It is wise to know who we call a friend. If a thief is your friend, you might be mistaken as one. So being cautious and careful of our company is important.

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culture/tradition Pastoral

Thoughts on Family

Sometimes things change but we begin and end with the family.

Family is everything. It’s the final bus stop for everyone. Think of the Prodigal son who returned to his Father when he lost everything.

Here are some notes on what to do to keep positive relationships with your family members.

Don’t let arguments or fights take away your happy moments. Sometimes I may be right and if others won’t see things the way I do. I let things be. Respect each other’s opinion.

It’s good to let go, to forgive. Humans err. No one is perfect. Apologizing and forgiving quickly when you offend someone will nip a growing grudge in the bud.

Be the humble one in the house. If you serve others you will see things from a milder perspective. Obey your elders. Rebellion pays no good tidings. Celebrate each other’s success. Be happy for any progress made in the family. Show your loyalty and concern. Support the family in any way you can.

Family time is precious. Evening family time is a great time to let steam off and share the days experience. A family that plays together, stays together. I learned more about life in my home than in school.

The relieve that comes with having a family time is unexplainable. Features of a happy family differs from one family to another. Permit me to include warm smiles, warm hugs and advices and warm soups in the basic feature!

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Lessons from Experiences Uncategorized

Positive Attitude to Life

Life is in minutes and seconds. There is no such thing as a bitter end, because an end is the beginning of something new. Learn from mistakes and keep moving. BTW only the living can make mistakes. So be thankful for life. Life is like a building that can be renovated and rebuilt from scratch.

Be contented why searching for more. A little that makes you happy is greater than many that makes you miserable. Show kindness and mercy to the weak, give to the needy, hold no grudge and forgive easily. Have faith in Jehovah, as your sustenance.

In the bolded, one can find true meaning to living.