Magnified Thanks!!!

Innerheights is turning 1 on the 28th of March, how wonderful 🙂

It has been such a pleasant and enlightening journey for me and I hope this blog has brought you the same feeling as well. It just it would be interesting to share the progress made since I started in terms of readership (and lives changed). Since 28 March 2011, Innerheights has:

  • Published 50 posts
  • 805 Followers
  • 141 comments
  • 5,474 All time views (all the visits on the site)
  • 156 views on the busiest day
  • 752 views on the busiest month (April 2011)
  • Most Popular Post: There is always more to a woman
  • Views from 21 different countries (SA leading, followed by United States)

The blog will be featured at Standard Bank (CIB)’s Manager’s conference as one of the Amazing Talent Stories in the bank (Video).  It is being recognized as an inspirational tool and a voice of conscious for the youth. There are countless other doors that the blog has opened for my personal growth.

I wish I can take credit for the achievement, but I simply cannot. All glory goes to God. I thank Him for giving me the talent and the vision. For creating the opportunity and providing resources.  For transforming lives through this work. I am just a vessel. I was told what to do, and I did it. There has never been a single week where I struggled to produce a meaningful article. All the ideas and words came at the right time and touched the right people. All Glory be given to the Lord on High!

When we glorify God, we are actually magnifying Him. Magnifying means making something bigger, but God is already big, He is far bigger than we could ever imagine Him to be. So by Glorifying Him, you cannot make Him bigger than He already is. You can only make Him bigger in your own heart. Each time He does something great, you learn to understand how powerful and mighty He is. Your heart doesn’t forget that, so that when troubles come, it reminds you How big God was in your previous situation. Glorifying God translates into increased faith. So if you are going through a hard time and that situation totally breaks you and leaves you hopeless, then it means that problem is actually bigger than the God inside of you. If you are broke and so, so distraught it means money is bigger than the God inside of you. You just don’t see how the existence of God in your life can allow you to be joyful because you do not have money.

When you rejoice through trials it means God inside of you is far bigger than those problems. His presence overshadows everything. We need to be in a place where we say, “Even if all else is lost, as long as God is here, all is well”. Innerheights has definitely grown the God inside of me. God has shown me that he can do far beyond my wildest imagination and with Him around I can face anything. Thank you for being part of the plan by reading Innerheights. I trust that this blog has definitely help grow the God inside of you bigger. Let us give him Glory for all we are and have.

To celebrate our 1 year birthday, I have reblogged the most popular post “More to a Woman” (Please see below). I have also renovated our space and introduced a Job Corner page. We all get the forward emails for job, posts, etc and there is always someone out there looking for employment. So can we please share and make God bigger in someone else’s hearts.  There is also the Ad’s by Me! page If you have a small business you would like to advertise I will put it up for free so people can see your hussle and support you. E-mail me if you are keen on the 2 above pages: noluthando@1635media.co.za

Let us share in the spirit of Ubunt and bring God more Glory. I am, because you are. Dankie Ngiyabonga 🙂

“Therefore be faithful with the little things and He will entrust you with Bigger things”

More to a Woman….

God gave the woman’s womb the secret of life, only it can turn a few cells into a full human being. Whichever woman you meet has that blessing and there is always more to her. Think about how you know that your mother is much more stronger than the tribulations she faces, you always know there’s more to her. In that same light you should view every woman you see, from the girl that braids people’s hair on the side of the road, to the one that serves you chips at KFC, the one who sleeps around nalo odlala ama-card all day ekasi. There is always more to them.

The poem below was sent to me by my dear friend Eddie who has always eminated so much respect for me and held me in high regard (which sometimes baffled me but it also encouraged me to value myself more). I remember when we used to go to the Bat Centre, every Thursday while in varsity to listen to poetry and hip-hop rhymes. At that time it was all amusement to me, but God was cultivating the gift he has given to my friend. I consider this as one of his best pieces and I admire the eyes in which a woman is looked at in this poem. And I hope all women see themselves in this light (me included). Enjoy……

There is more to a woman

Some stereotypical ancient writers

From the traditional old-fashioned school of thought

Claimed beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder

But what if the beholder was blind

The truth is beyond that raw attractive body

There is always more to a woman

All that junk sexual illusions

And sexual immorality coupled with the feelings of lustiness aside

There is great individual with rare separate divine qualities

To unify the diverse interest of this junk monetary driven society

From the very street kid and prostitute on the street corner

There is a strong goddess who is just a victim of a dysfunctional community

And paradox of sexual abuse

Yes from birth were given an unjust mode

Of treating and dealing with our sisters

This evil world could mould and shape people according to its unrealistic

Production standards

From the very same shebeen queen

There is a divine goddess from within

A pure African diamond with a heart of gold

Yes there is always more to a woman

This junk evil society was built upon a solid blue-print of prejudice and stereotypes

Yes it is a male dominated society but to all my black sisters

It might be hard to reminisce about the future

Where shadows of ignorance and anxiety are the standard feature of this unethical monetary driven society

There is always more to a woman

You might in hospital losing a battle against hiv-aids or tuberculosis remember there is always more to a woman

She might be a domestic worker but through her great spirits and divine wisdom she could bond

Disjointed families like a social worker she is a domestic worker with a knowledge

To send kids to college

There is always more to a woman…..

Shooo, profound ne? If only everyman could look at the women in their lives in such a manner a lot of things would be different, hey. Most importantly IF ALL WOMEN would see THEMSELVES this way, they’d be brave enough to demand the respect they deserve from the male counterparts they interact with. So lady, remember that you are Goddess and there is a lot more to you than meets the eye!

Pay up…!

I’m sure all of us are aware of the nationwide protest held by Cosatu on Wednesday regarding the scraping of e-tolls on public roads and labor brokers. Some people were part of it and even those that weren’t, will be largely affected by it. I personally, would have taken delight to be part of those demonstrations as I am affected by one of the issues raised. I strongly believe that the e-tolling system on Gauteng’s road is not fair and should be reconsidered. 

Either it wasn’t properly administered/ communicated to the public or Gov officials didn’t have a normal working citizen in mind.  The government took out a huge loan to improve our freeway systems through SANRAL, and they have built granties on the roads so road users can pay for each kilometer they drive in order to help repay the loan. From how I perceive it their main targets are the middle class “who can afford it”, they own cars and therefore able. The rich people might not really feel the pinch and an extra 600 expense from their pocket is not life changing. Let’s look at how much you would expect to pay on a monthly basis, given then currently proposed cost per kilometer;

The above numbers are only based on you going to work and coming back. This excludes weekends, business meetings other commitments one has to honor outside of the 20 days. Also those from outside the province will now be charged for visiting Gauteng. Look at your finances right now and confirm if you can absorb that additional cost, which could be going towards your savings or helping you reduce your current debt. I say, this tolling system should be strongly reconsidered, and herewith are my arguments.

  • First of all roads are public goods which should be provided by the Government from the fiscal budget either way. In a country roads are a necessity, not a luxury; we pay taxes for provision of public goods. Over and above that we pay taxes through the petrol price, license discs and purchase of the vehicle itself. Also what does the money collected through traffic fines do besides paying salaries and contribute to the road accident fund? Sure if all these finances are channeled properly they can contribute towards reducing SANRAL’s debt.
  • Secondly, introducing these tolls will cause so much inflation in the country that what you earn today will mean far less in a year’s time. Paying per kilometer will increase the cost of transportation of all goods, food included. Corporate will not absorb this cost, but will have to pass it down to the consumer. So a loaf of bread that would necessarily cost R1.50, will maybe cost now cost R1.55 to accommodate the extra transportation costs. It might be a small increase for the bread, but imagine how many thousands of other goods that will have these marginal price increases. These will surely have a big impact, which means your money will not go as further as it used to. Ultimately those affected will be the poor, who perhaps don’t even use freeways that much and when they do, it’s mainly through public transport.
  • Speaking on public transport, I do acknowledge that government has now exempted registered public transport vehicles from the tolls. However, the fact is that public transport remains woefully inadequate both in quality and in the numbers of people that it serves. A lot of people use private cars to get to and from work. This is not a free choice. It is because our public transport system is expensive, unsafe, and unreliable. The promise of massive investment in our overcrowded, run-down commuter rail services is good news, but this will take years to come on stream. So where are the new bus services? Apart from the BRTs in Joburg and Cape Town, not a single new subsidised bus route has been put in place for over ten years! And where is the enforcement of safe conditions in the taxi industry? The use of our motorways by private cars is therefore not a luxury for most users. If the users are forced off the motorways because of cost, they will not transfer to non-existent reliable public transport. They will take their cars onto the side roads, and create levels of congestion that our municipalities will not be able to cope with. Traffic management will become a nightmare, and it is highly likely that our already shocking road fatality statistics will rise.
  • Fourthly, what about those small transportation businesses? When you starting a business that is based on road travel, you are very disadvantaged in that other entities that make money from using the road (ie, taxis and buses) will be exempt from paying the tolls and you have to? Actually the taxi industry is the main violators on road rules, it makes so much money it can even afford planes, and yet we normal civilians have to pay for the very same road that they make money from? Hai, I fail to see the logic there. When I conclude, I will give you why I think taxi’s and public transport as a whole was exempted from paying.
  • Lastly, this whole e-toll program will be an admin nightmare. What’s going to happen to people who only frequently visit the province? How will those locals who don’t pay up are be disciplined? This will require much more resources to administrate. From where I stand, the National Post Office will be the most to benefit out of the system with all the notices they will be issuing.

Ok let’s say the e-tolling does proceed and all goes according to the Governments plan. Road users pay up on time on all kilometers travelled and revenue is generated WHAT WILL HAPPEN AFTER THE LOAN HAS BEEN REPAYED? Are they gonna scrap the tolls and break down those granties or they going to find another need for the money? This tolling process needed to be put forward for public scrutiny and all the parties involved engage on it. How would you feel if I took out a loan that you would have to pay back, without even asking you if you’re okay with it or even afford it at least?

So if you’re also against this system or anything else for that matter, SAY something. Raise your hand up and say “I’m not happy” don’t just sit there and hope someone will raise the objection on your behalf. That’s what it means to stand for something. You may not be able to attend a march, but if there’s a petition going around addressing your cause of concern, participate in it. Be counted! Have a voice! That will help build and define your character, don’t be a spectator when this happen.

The only reason why Taxi’s were exempted from paying was because they opposed the suggestion immediately when it was made. They voiced their concerns and were unwilling to accept the charges. They made it very clear they were not happy and Government listed. In Zulu we say:

“Ingane engakhali ifele embelekweni”

 

 

Public transport argument extracted from Cosatu’s memorundum published on www.news24.com on Wednesday 07 March 2012

Do not Bite the Hand that Feeds you

A few days ago I met guy wearing a wet suit outside my workplace. It was still drizzling and I was just dragging myself home coz I was tired from gym. Out of all the people that were there, this guy just chose to approach me and he greeted with such a smile.

He wasn’t charming me or asking for money, he said “Can you please help me find a job”. You see this guy had a Bsc Honors Degree in IT and has been unable to find work for the past 7 years. He’s from the Free State and he recently came here to Joziburg to find employment. At that time I was talking to him he was completely wet from the rain because he was coming from Sandton on foot. He had a job interview there, he managed to hussle for money to get there  but none for coming back. And he still had to find a way to get to Thokoza in the East Rand.

He said “Ousi waka Gauteng hothata awusina motho ometsebang mona” (Sister, Joburg can be cruel when you don’t know anyone here). He was lucky to find a woman who gave him shelter but they were struggling even for food, it was his second day now going on an empty stomach. We are talking while we’re walking to the parking lot and that conversation was less than 15mins long, I mean the guy was a stranger after all. But I got to know so much about him in such a short time, to me that showed he was genuine.

He gave me his email address that I may forward him IT related posts if I come across any. But I also helped him out with taxi money and a bit more, enough for them to buy a little of food in the house. I believe the Lord fulfilled a promise to provide for him through him approaching me instead off all the people that were there. Funny enough, I had been trusting God for a financial breakthrough that very same day. And the Lord provided for me! I was so joyful when He did, and as I thanked him for the finances, I promised Him that I will use it wisely because I knew that it came from Him. Yes He gave it to me, I asked and trusted and He provided

If this guy had approached me any other day, I was probably going to offer him empathy and not practical relief. But since I was given, I had no reason to deny another person in need. He gave, so I could give. We indeed serve a mighty God whose ways are much higher than ours. We should always give him our best.

Malachi 1 vs 7 “You offer defiled food on My Altar…” we often never realize that when we give to the Lord it’s rarely our best. You know, when you go to church and the offering basket passes by and you check in your wallet for money “you can sort of do without”. Ja, just throw in a few notes, that shouldn’t get you off budget for the month. Isn’t this the same as offering defiled food? Giving Him, that which we do not need. What makes us believe that we are merely helping God with the spare money in our wallets? God is in heaven he doesn’t need money to get by.

Ok, if He doesn’t need money though, then why does he say we should offer our tithes to him?… Well there answer to this I only realized when I freely gave to that guy on the street. I gave him much more than he expected or even needed, but I was cheerful in giving to him because I consciously knew that the money was not mine, but a gift from God. If the Lord didn’t bring a financial break through that day, I would have thought twice about helping the poor dude because I wouldn’t have had enough for myself to get by. So seeing I was blessed financially what was then stopping from blessing someone else. You see, probably he had been praying for a financial miracle himself and God answered that prayer through me. Well, a thought did cross my mind that what if the guy was making the story up. Even if that was the case, the most I’ll lose is money and in any case it wasn’t mine to begin with. The Lord gave it to me and I’m blessing one of his sons with it. There’s a saying that goes: “When you give to the poor, you are lending to God”

Whatever wealth/assets we have, it is not a measure of our talent of cleverness. It is in fact a measure of God’s grace over our lives. I mean this guy is more qualified than I am, and here we are, me blessing him. It could have easily been the other way round, but because of grace it isn’t and I need to thank God for that. All good things come from Him and so does provision. We need to understand and honor the fact that all we have is a gift from Him, we don’t owe our income, (no matter how big or small) to ourselves, but to His grace. Shouldn’t we then give it back to Him, as He commands us? It was so easy for me to give that guy sufficiently because I knew and acknowledge that it was from God. But then where do I think my monthly salary comes from? It surely doesn’t come from my talent if there are more qualified people begging on the side of the road. This realization brought me to a very humble place and taught me that I should be showing God gratitude for every penny he gives me.

“Bring all the tithes into the storehouse,

That there may be food in my house

And try Me now on this

Says the Lord of hosts

If I will not open for you the windows of heaven

And pour out for you such blessing

That there will be no room to receive it (Malachi 3vs 10)

Yes we know that His grace is sufficient, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have to work towards your righteousness. God loves you unconditionally, but He notices your efforts and your faith. These activate his grace. Carelessness doesn’t lead to abundance. When you joyfully and gratefully offer your tithes, you’re showing God that you understand that He’s provided. He’s given you stewardship over the money with which he entrusted you and for you to give Him glory-not for the things He’s given you. He’s the one your heart’s in love with, not the wealth. That’s all He wants and when He’s certain you are clear about that, He’ll entrust you with more and more of His blessings. Secure in the knowledge that they won’t take His place in your heart and life.

When you chose obedience as part of your lifestyle, it offers you peace, protection and promise. Having so much money that you don’t know what to do with it is a welcome problem! So go ahead-test Him. He said so. Just remember that: God is your first love and He’s crazy about you. When you ask for a fish, He won’t give you a snake. Obedience is better than sacrifice.

Give joyfully. Ask knowing you have already received. You’ll be blessed for it. Things work in God’s time, not yours, so do what you need to do- and get out of His way so He can do His thing!

“Where your treasure is, so is your heart also”

When is the Perfect time to introduce Her to your Parents?!?

In life we sometimes have to go through a few partners before we find the perfect one. However by trying to simplify things, we complicate them by introducing our girlfriends/boyfriends to our parents before we are ready to commit to them.

In our African culture, it is taboo for a guy to just bring a girl over at home if there are no intentions expressed to marry that girl. The couple should meet far away, by the river somewhere; parents were kept out of it until the man was ready to formalize the relationship. The families (even though they may respectively know about the relationship), would not engage as one unit until they are formally introduced through lobola negotiations. Well times have changed and some of these boundaries have been relaxed so much that by a 3 month relationship a woman is treated like a makoti and attends all family functions.

There’s nothing wrong about it, don’t get me wrong. It’s actually encouraging to see that your partner takes you seriously enough to introduce you to his parents. But for what really?  if the guy not yet sure if he is ready to make you his wife, then what why are you doing things as if you were married. Yes you might be heading towards it, but you are not there yet. I personally don’t favor this modern way of doing things, your parents can only meet mine only if we are ready to commit not for socializing. Ukujola is different to umshado, that’s why they have different rules. They can create sticky situations if not treated as 2 separate institutions. Take time to know her, decide what you want to do with her, and then only take her home. Don’t rush into things, speed does kill.

Meeting the parents too soon can somewhat put strain on the relationship and limits both parties from making liberal decisions about their relationship. The first person you fall in love with might not be the last one you will end up with, but if you take her home too soon, she might just end up being the first and last. Parents delight in seeing their children committing to one person and will sometimes gladly help in making the partnership work, more especially if they like your partner and think he/she is ideal for you. This creates friction when you feel like you want to get out of the relationship (of which you have every right to because it’s not a marriage), where now you have to explain your decision to the families. Gees such admin from dating? You can’t just send the person a “please call: it’s over” without considering the after effects.

Should your families now stop attending each other’s functions just because you decided you want something different from this “unofficial” spouse you have?  Obviously someone will help convince you to stay and look on the bright side. Especially us ladies, we just look at the long term picture; that this guys is going to eventually marry you anyways coz his family loves you so much. I am talking from experience by the way. The mother in law will even go to the extent of telling you that they could never accept any other woman besides you because you are perfect for his child.

Another negative that comes from this is that, when there’s a problem in the relationship, us ladies then go to the “mother in law” to tell her of how much her son is not appreciating you and in most cases the mothers stick with the favorite “makoti’s “ rather than their sons. But I don’t get how a parent would mediate on a “dating basis”, really. White people do this all the time and it works for them, don’t ask me how, but in most cases they do. Maybe it’s because the families understand when the couple breaks up and they are more than happy to meet your next love interest. With us, it’s different, once we meet that one girl, she is the only one we want to ever see “we don’t want to see different girls all the time, you introduced us to this one and please stick to her”.

You see, with our culture if a guy brings a girl home it means something and we won’t just easily move on after the break. This creates a hostile environment on your partner because now because they don’t want to seem like a player in front of their parents and will respect them enough to make the relationship work as much as they can (which, could be a good thing also).

There are times also where the woman feels that they want get out of the relationship for whatever reason. And then the “mother in law” will encourage her to be strong and bekezela (hold on), it will pass. But isn’t “bekezeling” for marriage where leaving the relationship is the last option? Now in this relationship where they haven’t even paid lobola with even 3 chickens they are telling you to tolerate absurd behavior so it could work. I know that every relationship is hard work, there are tough times that do require resilience, but a decision of whether to stay or not should come entirely from you and not influenced by family.  Maybe your friends might help give advice, but not your boyfriend’s family, sorry. Perhaps I’m being old fashioned about this but I really don’t believe it’s any of their business until I am formally part of their family.

Another thing that pushes men away even from a perfect spouse is the lack of privacy that would then exist. If he cheated on you and you tell his mother, how can he face his mom when he sees her?  And what if he’s doing it for the 3rd, 4th time, can you imagine what it does to their relationship? It may then lead to them resent you for not hiding their faults (not that I’m encouraging that you should stick around after being cheated on more than once).

So we have this big fight with my partner and I tell our families about it and everyone agrees that the guy was wrong and is infuriated by his actions. 2 days later I have forgiven you and we are all lovey-dovey again, but my family won’t feel the same way about you. I will forget it, but they never will. You will always be “that silly boy who did this and that…” even if you are a changed man now. In marriage there are avenues in the family unit where such issues are resolved and the families can restore the union. I just don’t see this process being necessary while people are still dating; it is actually disrespectful in my eyes.

So let’s say things get so bad that you decide to break up and stick with that decision. So does this mean that I have to delete your mother’s number and break up with everyone else? I mean I also had built a relationship with them and this clearly isn’t fair. But if I sustain these relationships how fair will it be on your next partner? They will always judge her against me and she could never be good enough coz they are just not me! I mean it would be horrific for me if I dated a guy and he wants to marry me, only to find that the ex girlfriend is still buddy-buddy with the mother in law. How am I supposed to build a relationship with the woman who will soon be my “official” mother in law if history is still in the picture? Again, this can be tolerable in a marriage but from a dating platform such is unnecessary.

Ladies, I know we put pressure on our men to introduce us to their family to prove that they are serious about us. But, honestly, that isn’t a sign of commitment; it’s just no indication of where you are headed with the guy if you forced him to introduce you. In as much as you will be invited to some gatherings where you have to go together, please learn to keep to yourself. You may be friends with cousin’s/siblings but his parents are his, not yours. Until the day you are accepted as a member of the family they will remain his alone.

 Respect these boundaries, for your sake and for his as well. Don’t be mean or anti social but nje if umamezala uyaphapha uzenza umngani wakho, be as polite as you can. Your focus is to nurture your relationship with your man, not his family because at the end of the day your will marry him, not them. If you compromise to please them, remember that you will be sleeping next to that person for the rest of your life not them.

Understand who you are, and who your partner is and only commit only if you know for sure that you are satisfied with all they are willing to offer and overlook that which they cannot. Be realistic and don’t measure the love his family gives you to be the love you will get from him in your marriage.

In conclusion; yes our African customs might seem so boring and outdated but they are there for a reason and we should respect that. If I came home in KZN to introduce my boyfriend to my dad, I would get the biggest, hottest klap of my life. Before he declares anything he is not even allowed to set foot in our yard.

Maybe my experiences embedded a negative perspective to this “meeting the parents” concept. Obviously I might be generalizing a bit and such doesn’t always end in a bad way. Do you have a different view from mine? Do share them, so I could also be enlightened and maybe buy into it again.

Relationships are a very dynamic thing. But always remember that love is more of decision than it is an emotion.

“Introducing western solutions to African problems has never proved successful”- N. Khanyile

 

 

This article was first published on Intellect Magazine (Dec ember 2011)

Understanding Women: Lessons in Life and Love by Female Vocal Artists through House music

Music has this wonderful effect of telling stories about life, love and every other thing. For every song you hear, there’s a story behind it. As we may all know I love house music, and vocal house is the best way to express emotions on a melody. Today I want to honor female vocal artists, who have made the most beautiful music in the past 2 years or so.

I actually wanted to make it as a countdown till I get to my favorite song, but I thought I should just put a twist into it. The ladies sing mostly about love and life; they share a part of life in all of them. We all know that relationships go through different seasons and women obviously have different reactions to those situations. And what better way to express your emotions  than through song. These songs share colorful experiences about themselves and most importantly how they react to romantic situations.

So if you guys have always wondered why women, act/react in a way that they do in relationships, this countdown might shed some light into it. This is not an agony aunt blog and we are still celebrating beautiful, vocal deep house tracks. I seriously honor some of these ladies for their time less talent and I forever salute house music as a therapeutic tool to any situations. Ok, let me get into it:

 

Heather Johnson -Love Alive

“We only tell the truth in selfishness. We don’t feel guilty when we lie. That’s why I’m daring my soul, this love for you won’t die…….My love is alive….it just won’t die…”

You see here, a lady is just being honest with herself and acknowledge that she is love with someone and the feelings are not about to die down anytime soon. This type of commitment is possibly shared to the partner and re-assured that they will always be loved. When a woman sings this song, she’s really into you hey. But then again a woman in love can say these words to every man she falls in love with, because when a woman falls, she really falls.

Monique Birngham- You, Me, World

“Now, they’re gonna try to break us down don’t let them, it’s alright. Even when we lose we win. They try as they might, it’s you and me against the world”

This is when a woman believes her man over any other rumour she has heard about him out there. These lyrics really come from a place of trust.

This is when a lady knows that she will stick by her man, no matter what. This would be in a scenario when people try to feed them lies and try to separate them, or people just don’t approve of their relationship. Or even when you’re in love with someone and they love you back, but the odds of you being together are almost impossible, yet you still have the belief that your love will fight through everything until you are together. This is quite true because, I believe with love you can conquer anything.

Monique also did that track in Fresh House Flava 1, and I also included it on the very first vocal count-down I did last year. Some resilient talent this woman has, may it move her to even higher heights!

Falling- Malehlokwa  ft (DJ Kent)

“I’ve never felt like this before…. You put your hands, when you know they belong, I roll my eyes but something says I should play right along. You turn softly; make me wonder is this something I should be waiting for. Coz so far you’ve got me falling, I wanna be your living fantasy”

This one needs no explanation. It simply says: I want you and I will treat you good. This speaks to a very exciting part in the relationship when there’s flirting and lots of chemistry, when the guy has played his cards so right, that you cannot help but melt. Well, this excitement comes after a bit of reluctance from the lady obviously, but eventually she gives in. Butterflies are the order of the day and every touch is magical. Hmmmm how wonderful it is to fall.

Awesome vocal skills by Malehlokwa, SA talent representing.

Aedola  – Take me away (Tone control)

“Take me away, far, far, far, far, far……To a place I belong, when there’s more than right or wrong. Where my conscience is free, it’s the place I wanna be…Where my soul feels at ease”

The only place I could think of is childhood. You know when we were care free, and nothing mattered except for eating and playing. Taking a bath was just one of those things we had to live with *rolling eyes*, oh, and getting hidings, shoo! I remember this place sometimes when life just gets overwhelming and I just need a break.  This is a place where I don’t have to worry about petrol or accounts and even entertaining a negative person. It’s just so far away from the reality I’m facing.

It could also mean that a relationship has grown so dry and cold that you wish it could go back to what it used to be. Unfortunately women stay in abusive relationships, hoping that someday things will change and get back to what they used to be. They live on the memories of what used to be, and this keeps them going. And don’t you sometimes wish to ask your partner, to just make the relationship like it was. In most cases we think they know how take things back like they was, and we forget to realize that we have also changed and some effort needs to come from us women as well.

Staphanie Mills- Free (The Layabouts Mix)

Oh what a beautiful track this is, Stephanie’s voice is one of a kind.

 “I’m out of here boy, I’ve had enough. All stressed out boy, you gotta go. It’s not healthy for me to live a lie, I can do better all on my own”

These are the words no man wants to hear. But if you hear a woman say this just know that she’s thoroughly fed up. You know when you have been trying so hard to make the relationship work, you have forgiven and overlooked one lie over the other just to stay together. There comes a point when she will feel that she cannot take it anymore and she leaves. Forget, she not going to come back.

There’s a part in the song that says” I wanna be happy, so just let me be. I wanna be free…..I wana be free from your love…” This woman needs freedom from the relationship and also from the feelings she has for you. Often women leave bad relationships, but they are forever thinking about the person and they are never free from the emotions felt for the ex partner. When that person comes back, they are often accepted back because the woman never sought freedom from the emotions but only from the relationship itself. Stephanie wants ultimate freedom to be happy on her own.

Busi – Get Over it!

“You think you can change me? Get over it”

Hmmmm such firm words from a woman. This is a lady who knows what she wants and know who she is. She’s not willing to change for anyone, especially not a man. It takes courage to have a story like this one and stick to it, because once we fall in love we will do anything to stay together, even if it means losing ourselves.

Every relationship does require a bit of compromise and each partner has to forgo some habits to accommodate the other person. But we tend to overdo it, when a guy wants you to behave in certain and be who you’re not only to fit into his expectations. A woman ends up losing so much of her identity and the only relies on the partner for happiness because she is what he wants her to so he better make it happy. This gets emotionally draining and the person doesn’t become as fun and pleasant as she used to be, which puts strain on the relationship which ultimately brings unhappiness to both the guy and the girl.

So ladies if he wants to turn you into Beyonce, please tell him to go to OR Tambo and take the next available flight to America!

Shea Soul -Perfectly (Layabouts Mix)

“Loving me perfectly, any fool can see there’s no one for me but you. What you do, no one else can do, boy you know it’s true there’s no one for me but you”

This is when you are loved, perfectly, as you are. No alterations, no adjustment. Your personality fits like a glove to the one you love. This is when you know that you could never as compatible with no other person as well as this one. Situations may not be in line for you guys to be together, but no matter how much you try and stay in separate relationships, that one person is still on your mind. And no matter what the new partner does, it could never compare to what the other did. I’ve read a quote that said “the most painful thing is to see the one you love, loving someone else”. How much more pain is it for both of you to love someone else when you know you were made for each other??

House music, keep talking!

Lisa Shaw -Someday (Home & Garden)

“In every way, I’m gonna be there. One of these days you’re gonna hold me. Someday. Find another way; just know I’m coming in your life to stay. Praying for the day, just know I’m coming, nothing can keep me way”

We all know that every relationship is hard work and it takes courage to fight for what you believe is yours. It sort of reminds me of Jennifer Hudson’s song “I’m staying (and you’re gonna love me)”.

This song basically says, man can be as confused as he wants to, but this woman aint letting go. She will stick around until the man realizes that they belong together. This is a situation when a woman finds herself in love with someone who’s committed elsewhere and she insists on holding on because she believes they belong together. She will be there for the guy in every single way just as long as he will end up being with her. Hmm, clingy behavior, some might say, but love can make us do the strangest of things.

Lisa Shaw also did that classic track “Let it ride” I remember it was one of my favorite songs in 2006/7.

I found my light – Layabouts

“You make every day, special in a different way…I found my light, brings the sunshine into the night and now I can’t imagine my life, without the glow of your smile”

This is when you have found the love of your life. The one person who fills all the gaps that the others left. This is when you choose to love and imperfect person, perfectly. Ladies Prince Charming doesn’t compare to this man. He is real, very loving, and somehow “gets you”. All your jokes they don’t find funny at work, he gets them. This is love at it’s purest, and you no longer picture yourself with anyone else but him.

If you are in this space with the one you love, please invite me to the wedding, asseblief. Ahhh, but love is such a beautiful thing!

Stephanie Cook- He is the joy

  “He is the joy, in the morning, in the evening…..He takes the pain and the strife every day of my life”. I like to think about God when I hear this song. There’s no greater joy, than consistent joy. When you know the person will never sulk, get into a bad mood, listen to rumours or even find someone else to replace you. Men , if you have been in a relations with a woman for a while and still thinks you are her Joy, consider yourself lucky. It means even if you haven’t said a word, your presence just brightens up her day.

This song goes down as one of my most favorites in this playlist. It’s such a happy and feel good mood lifters. It also carries some fond memories for me as well.

Akram Sedkaoui -Each and every day (Jerk House Connection)

“Humanity, has forgotten, its own dignity. Determination is what we all need Each and every day, life goes on…..brothers and sisters, we are born to be lovers. It’s not what I’m dreaming, and I’m not preaching…Love is what we need”

I love this song with the deepest of my soul. It addresses the social ills that we are faced with, where people just lack ambition and they go through life in a routine. We have become a generation of laziness and selfishness. Where people only consider themselves and not others, we do lack love, honestly. You may find that there are ample opportunities at your workplace but you won’t share them with a neighbor because you fear they might be better than you. While you are busy hating, life goes on and you move closer to your grave without making a positive change in other people’s lives.

This speaks to even those that are sitting around waiting for something to happen. Vuka uzenzele, life is passing you by!

In it’s own time…

The festive season is a wonderful time to have fun and spend time with friends. There are so many functions to attend and old relatives to see. Everyone is always in a joyful mood and the warm summer nights made every chill session a joyous one. I also had my fair share of fun, almost every single day of my holidays was a memorable one and there was never a day that was ended on a dull note, not even one.  Until one day it all suddenly stopped. No, other people went on having fun and nothing tragic happened to me, but one morning things came to a halt.

It was the first day of the New Year and we had planned with a few friends to drive to another province in the morning for an annual event. Things fell apart in the last minute and I found myself sitting on my couch, by myself with absolutely nothing to do. My family visits were done and I had no function to look forward to on that day, and in any case most people were too tired to do anything. Dezemba ifedile!

This brought a very sobering thought in my mind that: There’s a time for everything. There’s a time to have fun and there’s a time to find yourself. Gather your thoughts and strategies for the coming year. Indeed there’s a time to spend money and a time to make it and I now needed to focus on the “making” it part.

Imagine if December, went on and on. Life would be one long unhappy party. I say unhappy because we need change. Routine (no matter how fun) gets boring and we stop appreciating the pleasure in things because we are so used to them. We don’t see the need to savor the moment because we know that tomorrow will be the same (might be slightly different), but the same. Without change there’s nothing to look forward to because we already know how the story would end. Same as relationships, once you know that your partner will never leave, you start taking them for granted.

I’m glad my change came on the 1st of Jan, because it gave me tome to reflect and plan. Most importantly I spent genuine time in the Lord’s presence, which I had grown to do less due the busy season. Interesting enough the 1st scripture I read was this one:

For everything there is a season

A time for every activity under the Sun

A time to be born and a time to die

A time to plant and a time to harvest

A time to kill and a time to heal

A time to tear down and a time to build up

A time to cry and a time to laugh

A time to grieve and a time to dance

A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones

A time to search and a time to quit searching

A time to keep and a time to throw away

A time to tear and a time to mend

A time to be quiet and a time to speak

A time to love and a time to hate

A time for war and a time for peace (Eccl 3: 1-8 NLT)

Imagine a very hot summer day how unbearable the heat becomes, and then….it rains. How refreshing! It rained because it is the season and time for such. Likewise, in our lives there is a time for everything. When bad things happen in your life, don’t assume it’s bad luck or anything. Such things are supposed to happen because there’s a time for you to be happy and a time for you to be sad. We all know that life is a bumpy ride; there will be joy, laughter, tears. That’s why there we have baby showers and funerals. All has its chance.

Time is life’s change agent. For you to be wise you need to be a fool first so you can “gain” wisdom. Likewise for the earth to cool off it needs to be hot first. Imagine if it never rained in summer and rain only came in winter. Both seasons will just be unbearable, aren’t we glad that all has its time?

Change is necessary for growth. It may not seem favorable at that time, but it’s always for the best. Change introduces us to, wisdom, tears, laughter, blessings. What happens if a baby in the womb does not wait for its right time to be born? It’s either a miscarriage or premature birth, which are rather unfavorable. When we rush things and not allow them to happen at the right time, we invite disaster into our lives.

Change also teaches us patience. Certain changes need to happen in our lives to prepare us for what is still to come. You need to be equipped for the destiny you were created for and valuable and unforgettable life lessons are mostly learned the hard way. We need to learn to embrace that change. Before you were born, you didn’t need air in your mother’s tummy, but your body still developed a nose, nor did you need to see anything but your body still developed eyes. Let alone needing any hair, but aren’t you glad that you grew hair? You see change equips us for what is yet to come. It may be a bit uncomfortable to accommodate at first, but we eventually get used to the changes that it becomes our reality.

“Peace I leave with you. My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled neither let it be afraid” (John 14: 27 NIV). Through all the turbulent changes in our lives God’s peace will always be with us. His presence power in our lives remains the same. We may shift our focus from Him to the changes at hand and allow them to overwhelm us or we can keep our trust in Him always. Knowing that nothing is ever impossible with God by your side and that He always has your best interests at heart can give you enough courage to walk through fire because you know you will be fine. In fact you will come out better.

So don’t be afraid of whatever changes come next in your life because it is well within it’s time. Make friends with the change. Don’t resist it, rather embrace and accept it. In fact look forward to it. It is the beginning of the next chapter of your life and, trust me; with God it will be a 100 times better than the last one.  And remember: Change is the only constant in life, so whether you like it or you don’t, its going to happen anyway. Get used to it.

If He brings you to it, He will see you through it!

30 Things To Stop Doing In 2012!

These are not New Year’s resolutions, don’t confuse them with such. I am sure we all have plenty of those going around and every gym in the country is flooded with people who want to make some sort of tangible change in their lives. Which is a very good thing, I guess.

Even if you do not believe in resolutions, every once in a while it is important for a person to reflect and look back into their lives and see what changes need to be made in order for them to reach their dream and be the better they have always wished to be. Because I tell you; the definition of stupidity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting the different result. We all want to be better and define our character positively and yet we succumb to doing little things in the same way day in and day out. It’s not fair.

We were born to conquer, be the best we can possibly be and yet life does happen and that aspiration grows smaller and smaller as we grow older. Below is a list of things that one should STOP doing in order to grow. Unfortunately most resolutions are never sustained, but these lessons are actually daily resolutions. The bible says that the Lord’s mercies are new everyday and there’s no better truth than that. Every single day in an opportunity to start afresh and work towards making ourselves better people.  As Maria Robinson once said, “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”  But before you can begin this process of transformation you have to stop doing the things that have been holding you back.

We go through life so swiftly. Easily repeating bad habits, sometimes we know they are bad and sometimes we don’t. But most often we do things without thinking because they come so naturally. The most important one for me being: Stop spending time with the wrong people!

Yes! Do you know that on average you are a reflection of 10 people you spend most of your time with? We know that certain people always bring negativity in our lives and somehow we always spend time with them. It happens without us thinking, but it does influence how we think and who we become. Because you share in conversations and common interests, from which you develop a certain way of thinking through that. This unfortunately filters out to other relationships in our lives (and with ourselves), comparing and competing could be the fruit of such friendships.

Another important one is Being Idle. Do you know that an idle mind is the Devil’s playground? Passivity is very dangerous for our growth. Also lying to yourself is self limiting. You can pretend all you want infront of other people, but if you are never honest to yourself about certain thing, you will never learn from them. The first step to healing/rehab is admitting that you have a problem. Honesty, people, honesty! The best lesson for me ever is forgiving yourself. Know that you are not perfect and you will make mistakes once in a while, sometimes terrible ones. But in forgiving yourself you allow the opportunity of a fresh start. Giving you the “Let’s try again mentality” because you now understand that life is a learning ground, we try to succeed but we will fail sometimes.

Ultimately we all want to grow, mentally, spiritually, financially and even socially. But this requires us to be always aware of our actions and reactions to life. It all begins with treating ourselves better. If you want to change something about your life, you may not know what it is or evenbe what it is or exactly where to start.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  1. Stop spending time with the wrong people. – Life is too short to spend time with people who suck the happiness out of you.  If someone wants you in their life, they’ll make room for you.  You shouldn’t have to fight for a spot.  Never, ever insist yourself to someone who continuously overlooks your worth.  And remember, it’s not the people that stand by your side when you’re at your best, but the ones who stand beside you when you’re at your worst that are your true friends.
  2. Stop running from your problems. – Face them head on.  No, it won’t be easy.  There is no person in the world capable of flawlessly handling every punch thrown at them.  We aren’t supposed to be able to instantly solve problems.  That’s not how we’re made.  In fact, we’re made to get upset, sad, hurt, stumble and fall.  Because that’s the whole purpose of living – to face problems, learn, adapt, and solve them over the course of time.  This is what ultimately molds us into the person we become.
  3.  Stop lying to yourself. – You can lie to anyone else in the world, but you can’t lie to yourself.  Our lives improve only when we take chances, and the first and most difficult chance we can take is to be honest with ourselves.  Read The Road Less Traveled .
  4. Stop putting your own needs on the back burner. – The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too.  Yes, help others; but help yourself too.  If there was ever a moment to follow your passion and do something that matters to you, that moment is now.
  5. Stop trying to be someone you’re not. – One of the greatest challenges in life is being yourself in a world that’s trying to make you like everyone else.  Someone will always be prettier, someone will always be smarter, someone will always be younger, but they will never be you.  Don’t change so people will like you.  Be yourself and the right people will love the real you.
  6. Stop trying to hold onto the past. – You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading your last one.
  7. Stop being scared to make a mistake. – Doing something and getting it wrong is at least ten times more productive than doing nothing.  Every success has a trail of failures behind it, and every failure is leading towards success.  You end up regretting the things you did NOT do far more than the things you did.
  8. Stop berating yourself for old mistakes. – We may love the wrong person and cry about the wrong things, but no matter how things go wrong, one thing is for sure, mistakes help us find the person and things that are right for us.  We all make mistakes, have struggles, and even regret things in our past.  But you are not your mistakes, you are not your struggles, and you are here NOW with the power to shape your day and your future.  Every single thing that has ever happened in your life is preparing you for a moment that is yet to come.
  9. Stop trying to buy happiness. – Many of the things we desire are expensive.  But the truth is, the things that really satisfy us are totally free – love, laughter and working on our passions.
  10. Stop exclusively looking to others for happiness. – If you’re not happy with who you are on the inside, you won’t be happy in a long-term relationship with anyone else either.  You have to create stability in your own life first before you can share it with someone else.  Read Stumbling on Happiness .
  11. Stop being idle. – Don’t think too much or you’ll create a problem that wasn’t even there in the first place.  Evaluate situations and take decisive action.  You cannot change what you refuse to confront.  Making progress involves risk.  Period!  You can’t make it to second base with your foot on first.
  12. Stop thinking you’re not ready. – Nobody ever feels 100% ready when an opportunity arises.  Because most great opportunities in life force us to grow beyond our comfort zones, which means we won’t feel totally comfortable at first.
  13. Stop getting involved in relationships for the wrong reasons. – Relationships must be chosen wisely.  It’s better to be alone than to be in bad company.  There’s no need to rush.  If something is meant to be, it will happen – in the right time, with the right person, and for the best reason. Fall in love when you’re ready, not when you’re lonely.
  14. Stop rejecting new relationships just because old ones didn’t work. – In life you’ll realize that there is a purpose for everyone you meet.  Some will test you, some will use you and some will teach you.  But most importantly, some will bring out the best in you.
  15. Stop trying to compete against everyone else. – Don’t worry about what others doing better than you.  Concentrate on beating your own records every day.  Success is a battle between YOU and YOURSELF only.
  16. Stop being jealous of others. – Jealousy is the art of counting someone else’s blessings instead of your own.  Ask yourself this:  “What’s something I have that everyone wants?”
  17. Stop complaining and feeling sorry for yourself. – Life’s curveballs are thrown for a reason – to shift your path in a direction that is meant for you.  You may not see or understand everything the moment it happens, and it may be tough.  But reflect back on those negative curveballs thrown at you in the past.  You’ll often see that eventually they led you to a better place, person, state of mind, or situation.  So smile!  Let everyone know that today you are a lot stronger than you were yesterday, and you will be.
  18. Stop holding grudges. – Don’t live your life with hate in your heart.  You will end up hurting yourself more than the people you hate.  Forgiveness is not saying, “What you did to me is okay.”  It is saying, “I’m not going to let what you did to me ruin my happiness forever.”  Forgiveness is the answer… let go, find peace, liberate yourself!  And remember, forgiveness is not just for other people, it’s for you too.  If you must, forgive yourself, move on and try to do better next time.
  19. Stop letting others bring you down to their level. – Refuse to lower your standards to accommodate those who refuse to raise theirs.
  20. Stop wasting time explaining yourself to others. – Your friends don’t need it and your enemies won’t believe it anyway.  Just do what you know in your heart is right.
  21. Stop doing the same things over and over without taking a break. – The time to take a deep breath is when you don’t have time for it.  If you keep doing what you’re doing, you’ll keep getting what you’re getting.  Sometimes you need to distance yourself to see things clearly.
  22. Stop overlooking the beauty of small moments. – Enjoy the little things, because one day you may look back and discover they were the big things.  The best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments you spend smiling with someone who matters to you.
  23. Stop trying to make things perfect. – The real world doesn’t reward perfectionists, it rewards people who get things done.  Read Getting Things Done .
  24. Stop following the path of least resistance. – Life is not easy, especially when you plan on achieving something worthwhile.  Don’t take the easy way out.  Do something extraordinary.
  25. Stop acting like everything is fine if it isn’t. – It’s okay to fall apart for a little while.  You don’t always have to pretend to be strong, and there is no need to constantly prove that everything is going well.  You shouldn’t be concerned with what other people are thinking either – cry if you need to – it’s healthy to shed your tears.  The sooner you do, the sooner you will be able to smile again.
  26. Stop blaming others for your troubles. – The extent to which you can achieve your dreams depends on the extent to which you take responsibility for your life.  When you blame others for what you’re going through, you deny responsibility – you give others power over that part of your life.
  27. Stop trying to be everything to everyone. – Doing so is impossible, and trying will only burn you out.  But making one person smile CAN change the world.  Maybe not the whole world, but their world.  So narrow your focus.
  28. Stop worrying so much. – Worry will not strip tomorrow of its burdens, it will strip today of its joy.  One way to check if something is worth mulling over is to ask yourself this question: “Will this matter in one year’s time?  Three years?  Five years?”  If not, then it’s not worth worrying about.
  29. Stop focusing on what you don’t want to happen. – Focus on what you do want to happen.  Positive thinking is at the forefront of every great success story.  If you awake every morning with the thought that something wonderful will happen in your life today, and you pay close attention, you’ll often find that you’re right.
  30. Stop being ungrateful. – No matter how good or bad you have it, wake up each day thankful for your life.  Someone somewhere else is desperately fighting for theirs.  Instead of thinking about what you’re missing, try thinking about what you have that everyone else is missing*-

Author of the 30 Things To Stop Doing in 2012: Uknown (Adapted from an e-mail abstract)

I’m sure while reading these, you could relate with one or more of these resolutions. Choose which ones matter to you and start acting on them. These are small daily commitments. You do not have to start tomorrow, the very next conversation you have with a colleague/friend could be a starting point. And remember every single day is an opportunity to be better.

You may stumble along the way, but at least you are trying. God is also there to help you throughout. His grace will be sufficient to cover your mess-up’s because He knows your heart and He will honor your desire to be better. I encourage you to invite him in your planning. Pledge your weaknesses to him and let Him know what you would like to change. Believe it or not, you will now have a faithful partner on your side who will never forget to remind you of your resolutions and will help you keep them. He is interested in every single area of your life, even the petty ones. Lets partner with Him and make this year a memorable one!

Let not 2013 find you the same person that you were last year. Keep the definition of stupidity in mind each time you want to succumb to senseless routine. Happy New Year!

“When you stop chasing the wrong things you give the right things a chance to catch you”

Resolutions

God is all these wonderful things that you see below. If you can fully comprehend His goodness, then all the experiences you had in 2011 will be worthwhile. Good or bad, they don’t change God’s nature na dthe way He loves you. Looking back at the year that was I am grateful that I lived with the understanding of who God is in my life and knowing that He will remain the same, gives me so much hope for the future.

Below is a piece of 2011 reflections that I wrote for Intellect Mag, and I thought it would also be nice to share on the blog, since this is the last post for the year. Yes it is. I also deserve a holiday, ok. I’m looking forward to a better and brighter 2012 with more growth and even bigger blessings. Besides the obvious resolutions for a new house, job and qualification, I am trusting God for an even more pleasant heart. I pray for Innerheights ti have a wider impact on people’s spiritual lives, I pray for Mokgotsi to flourish into the vision we have for it. I pray for Intellect to go back online and be more frequent and lastly for the business venture I’m investing my energy to be a success and make a real difference in employment stats in SA. What are you trusting God for next year?

2011 Reflections (Intellect Mag_4th issue_Dec 11)

Your measures of success will determine how you reflect on your year. What you have set to achieve materially may not be as evident as that you which you have achieved personally as an individual. Lets reflect on 2011 and discover things we can be grateful for and feel we have accomplished. I’m not talking about that house you haven’t bought or the weight you didn’t lose. Maybe you never even registered for that course you intended to or reduce your debt as planned. Regardless of those unmet goals, another year of life was not in vain, how you have grown as a person is also an element to be celebrated in your yearly reflections.

Do you think you are the same person you were this time last year? I doubt it. So much has happened and a lot has been learnt from those experiences. Some have been good, some bad. Some life changing and others insignificant but they have all contributed to you being the person you are today. You now look at the world differently and probably understand yourself better. Reflect on your growth and see how much you have accomplished, your growth not only leads you closer to your material growth but it also enlightens you. Here are a few things to reflect to see if 2011 has been a good year or not.

As we grow old, our friends change simply because our direction in life is not the same and some people are only in our lives for a season. Have your friend list changed? If yes, has it changed for the better or do you long for the friendships you have lost. The type of bait we use will determine the fish we catch, when we grow in a positive direction, as such we will attract the caliber of people that identify with us. If you have made new friends and feel that them being around you was a setback, then you really need to go back to the drawing board and reconsider the type of influence you expose yourself to. Do you still hang around the same circle of people? well, that’s not a bad thing either. Look at the type of strides those friends have made and how they have motivated and encouraged you to be a better person. We always want to be on par with our peers and when they do well it drives to be more ambitious and realize that anything is possible.

Perhaps you have helped a friend become a success. That is also a success for you to celebrate. Looking back at how many people you have helped throughout the year is an accomplishment for yourself as well. It shows that your existence in this universe is not in vain and you are a contributing member in the circle of life. Helping others could range from giving someone a lift, buying them something or even washing the dishes after an event. Giving advice, listening and making an effort to make someone else’s life just a bit easier are a sign of growth and they clearly indicate that you are indeed better than you were yesterday. Even though your assistance may not yield any results in your life right now, but they are acts of righteousness and your reward awaits in another space in time. Start counting your blessing from the acts of service you have given. Someone has grown through you and that my friend, is personal growth in itself.

Yes, you may not be as financially free as you had hoped to be at the beginning of the year. But have your spending patterns changed and are you now more aware of what you invest your finances in? You have now started making mature purchase decisions and are more realistic about your financial position. You are making strides to improve it and getting the discipline to preserve it. You are now more diligent in faxing those medical aid claims and you do your tax return with more awareness. Counting every penny is a sign of growth because it leaves you with more to save. And saving is the first step to accumulating wealth. If you haven’t started saving, salvage your year and do it as soon as tomorrow. Pack lunch to work and save that twenty bucks!

How you value yourself is also a sign of maturity. Self love is the biggest gift we can ever give ourselves. Perhaps last year you didn’t understand yourself better than you do now and thus gave yourself way too little credit. Being aware of who you are and acknowledging your abilities leads to more appreciation of self. This means you will not settle for less than you deserve, not allow yourself to be second best and most of all you don’t allow mediocrity in your life. When you love yourself first, you are able to love others better and you won’t rely your happiness on them. If you feel that you are more valuable and worthy of good things, then this year has surely been good to you.

Where you are spiritually is a very significant measure of success. Actually, it’s my personal one. My measure of success is to be where God wants me to be at that particular point in my life. Before we were born, God had a specific purpose for us to fulfill and he knows the exact time we should accomplish them. Being in sync with God’s spirit helps us to be aligned with his plans for our lives. If this year you have made efforts to build a relationship with God or get in touch with your spirituality, then you are well on your way of having a good year to look back on. The spiritual arena is the one place that offers growth more than any other. Once we are spiritually wise, then prosperity and all these goods shall be added to our lives. The Rasta man puts it like this; “Seek Jah first and everything will come after”

Lastly; Looking back from last year and where you are now, I am pretty sure that your decision making has been enhanced, somewhat. People have shown you their true colors and life has reminded you that it is unfair and the world owes you nothing. Smile back at those awkward experiences because now you know better and would not make the same mistakes again. You will approach 2012 with new weapons and better lessons.

If you have material goals that you hope to achieve next year, start planning for them now. Waiting for 1 Jan 2012 to live out your resolutions is a bit too late, I’m afraid. If you plan to study, for instance, it means you should have already applied for that course already and now your goal is to just pass and obtain that qualification. If you haven’t clearly understood which milestones to strive for next year, well I suggest you start writing them down as soon you can. This will give you a chance to reflect on how realistic and beneficial they will be to your life. So when 01 Jan 2012 comes, you are mentally prepared to work towards our goals.

Maybe the world will end in 2012, who knows, but if it does, what will you say you have done with your life? Remember: What you are is a gift from God to you and what you do with yourself is your gift to God. Happy 2012 🙂

 

 

 

Soul Tied….

The festive season is upon us once again. Ahead, lies long summer nights with friends and family in joyful gatherings. Good times indeed. Its also a time when people feel so happy and “generous” that they have sexual flings. Some people even take a break from their committed relationships so they can be free to mingle (well, usually the man will be the one  in an endless bad mood towards their partner so they are free to do whatever, and then after Christmas all will seem well). Well I’m not judging anyone, I mean we all do as we please, it’s our choices after all.

Unofficial sexual relations occur throughout the year in any case, not only in December. Where people have not entered into a covenant with God in marriage engage in such, I mean it’s normal there’s nothing to fret about, really. Uhmm, well after reading what I’m about to share now, I shall beg to differ. Sex is a big deal, much bigger than you think. We all came into this world through sex, so I suppose it is important enough in the expansion of the human race.

Remember, humans are spirits that live within, not the bodies we see. Whatever we bind physically or verbally is also bound in the spiritual realm. The bible definition of marriage is that the man shall leave his parents and be joined together with his wife and the 2 shall become one flesh (Eph 5vs 31). Well, the only instance where I have physically seen 2 people become one is when a child is conceived. A child is a combination of both the mother and father so in actual fact the 2 have become one. But remember that what bind physically is also bound in the spiritual realm, meaning your soul has integrated with the person you had sex with (in order to conceive the child). Not all sexual relations produce offspring, obviously, there’s contraceptives and the like, but regardless that physical act bonds you together. It forms what is called a soul tie.

What is a soul tie? The bible does not use the word “soul tie” but it speaks of them when it talks about souls being knit together, becoming one flesh. So in actual fact, every time you engage with another spirit sexually you create a soul tie. A soul tie in its simplest form ties two souls together in the spiritual realm. So it means whatever curses/blessings that are over this person’s life are now yours as well. If they are involved witchcraft or occult activities, you are now also part of it. Generational curses passed down in their family are now also yours. That is why it is very important to engage with some you have committed yourself to; you know who they are, where they come from and what spiritual governance they are under.

Soul ties between married couples draw them together like magnets, while soul ties between fornicators (sex outside of marriage) can draw a beaten and abused woman to the man which in the natural realm she would hate and run from. But instead, she runs to him even though he doesn’t love her and treats her like dirt. Other souls ties can do things such as allow one person to manipulate and control another person and the other person is unaware to what is going on or knows what is going on, but for no real reason allows it to continue.

How are soulties formed: Godly soul ties are formed when a couple are married “the two shall become one flesh”. A Godly soultie between husband and wife that God intended them to have is unbreakable by man (Mark 10 vs 7-9). However when a person has ungodly sexual relations with another person, an ungodly soul tie is then formed “Or do you not know that he who is joined to a harlot is one body with her? for the two shall become one flesh” (1 Cor 6 vs 16). This soul tie fragments the soul and is destructive. People who have many past relationships find it difficult to ‘bond’ or be joined to anybody because their soul is fragmented.

Now take time and think back on how many souls are you tied to. Some were one night stands you don’t even recall. But fact is a portion of that person is imparted into you and you in them. Scary thought, hey. And can you imagine how fragmented your soul might be. The day you are joined to your wife/husband they would actually get a diluted version of you.

Not all hope is lost, soul ties can be broken and you can live a free life again. Prayer is obviously #1, but here are other biblical ways to break soul ties

  • If you have had adultery, fornication, sex outside of marriage, etc it is vital that you repent from those sins and receive God’s forgiveness before you can go about breaking a soul tie
  • If you have any unforgiveness in your heart against the person, you must choose to release that bitterness and forgive the person. The Bible is clear that bitterness defiles a man
  • If you have made any spoken commitments, vows or even simply saying, “I will love you forever”, it has ample power in the spiritual realm to bind the soul to that person (form a soul tie). The tongue is quite capable of binding the soul and can be a great means to create soul ties : “You are snared by the words of your mouth. You are taken by the words of your mouth” Proc 6 vs 2. These spoken covenants need to be renounced in order to break a soul tie. When you renounce something, you basically take them back, verbally. You spoke them verbally, now it’s time to take them back verbally. For example, if a woman has had a soul tie with a man who was not “the one”, and said she would never be able to love another man, then this needs to be renounced if she wants to break the soul tie. Such a woman could renounce it be saying something like, “I renounce having said that I will never be able to love another man”

Verbally renouncing carries a lot of weight in the spiritual realm. Just as vows can bind the soul, renouncing can release the soul from bonds. Jesus said that whatsoever you shall loose on earth will be loosed in heaven (the heavenly realm, or spiritual realm).  Claim your freedom and renounce these silly ties.

I really hope you got some meaningful insight from this lesson on soul ties. So the next time you decide to zip down or open wide, think twice about the effects on your soul. Oh, also there’s AIDS to worry about. Casual sex exposes you to all kinds of nasty things one should clearly weigh whether is it really worth it or not. Waiting has never killed anyone, and in any case speed kills (arrive alive).

This year’s AIDS campaign is “Getting to Zero” whe the number of new infections is limited to zero. Be part of the change. Men, self control should be a celebrate achievement. Ladies, respect yourselves. Let us strive to create a clean slate for the next generation; AIDS should have no room in our children’s lives. It begins with us.

Happy World AIDS day, Happy December and Happy soul-tie-free life!

Rules to Live by

 

 

There’s a lovely lady who left everything to start a mentorship program to help young teenage girls to find their way in life through encouragement. She visits schools,  keeps in touch with her mentees and gives them support as much as she  can. I had the privilege to be invited by her to talk to the girls and  share my life experiences which have helped me be the woman I am today. Obviously I don’t have the greatest life story of all and not yet as successful as I dream to be, but the little that I have learnt I was willing to share with them. Hope it will be worthwhile.

 

I had to be very careful of not making the talk about me. They needed to benefit from the talk, not me.  So some thought and prayer went into the preparation. I was not going to stand there and tell them they have to do A, B, C if they want to be like me. We have Nonhle Thema for that. I decided to share the 10 most valuable lessons I have learnt  in life, hopefully many more can learn from them as well.

 

1.  Be counted. Don’t just be spectators in life. When there are activities you can get involved in, by all means do it. In school I was involved in so many things, which kept me busy and taught me a lot. Naturally that ambition carried onto my varsity years and it is also evident in my working life. We are not born to go to school, then varsity, find a job, buy a house, car, get married, have kids, raise them and die. There’s always more to get out of life and it’s up to us to claim it by exploring our abilities and be counted.

 

2.  Be glad that God doesn’t give you everything you ask for. There were times when I felt that life was unfair that my parents couldn’t afford certain things. I know there were times when some of us were praying that God will help us get enough money to have a gold tooth. No matter how much you prayed and begged, it just never came. Looking at yourself now, aren’t you glad that you never got it? God knows how your life would plan out and a gold tooth would not adapt to the person you will grow up to become. So he did you a favor by not opening that small door, Im sure you are thanking him now.

 

3.  Everyone is important.   There’s no insignificant person in this life. The fact that they are alive it means they are worthy of your respect. Don’t look at others on a basis of what they can do for you, rather be more interested on what their personality can offer you. We always learn from other people, rich or poor, they are all just wonderful spirits that can be an opportunity for blessing. I have learnt that, through Mr Gcaba. I saw him again today and in as much as he cleans our floors at the bank, he still offers me the best fatherly laughs of my life. His guidance and support has been far greater than that of the people I consider “important” in that building.

 

4.  Respect your elders. It doesn’t matter what your aunt thinks of that neighbor, as long as they are older than you, they should be respected. You are a child and you seek your own blessings in life through honoring them. No amount of success can ever give you permission to look down on your elders. Your blessings in life will come from your parents. You can’t be splashing trips and holidays for friends while your mother lives in a leaking house. Honor your parents while they are still alive and they can bless you with their “thank you”.

 

5.  Stand for something. Again, this goes with being counted. Have a course that you support, even if it’s just the ANC. But have something that you are so interested in that you will be willing to defend in an argument. Help out somewhere or stand in solidarity for something. This teaches us to be independent, the ability to trust our own judgment and formulate opinions about things. If you don’t stand for something, you will fall for anything.

 

6. Remain humble. I remember when we were young, we were so poor that other kids in the neighborhood were told not to play with us. My granny used to sell traditional beer for a living and they thought we would poison their kids with our drunken mentality, lol. But years have gone and things have changed. I was recently helping one of the “kids from next door” to find house cleaning jobs from the people at my work place. Funny how, being big in one point in your life, doesn’t guarantee that same bigness in another. In Zulu they say “Lithatha osemnyango limbeke emsamo, lithathe osemsamo limbeke emnyango”. Don’t ever think you are better than other people.

 

7. Nothing is impossible with God. With God by your side, who can dare be against you? Learning to trust God is a vital element for success. Believing in His promises over your life will you keep you encouraged. Accepting His love will keep you comforted. Comprehending His power will make you feel invincible. He is indeed a great God, who has wonderful plans for our lives.

 

8. All things work together for the God of those who love God. There has never been more true a statement than this. No matter how dull things may seem right now, everything will work out for the best for you. It has to!

 

9. You are here for a purpose. You are not an accident of nature and nothing about you is a coincidence. Walking with the understanding that you are important and are here for something leads to a fruitful life. You are not here to breathe and take up space; you are here to deliver something only you can offer to the world. Imagine if Jesus decided that he was here to be a pilot just because his friend is fascinated by flying objects. Ey, that would have been a disaster neh. Because He knew why he was here, He lived out his life the way only He could because no one else in history can come and live out His purpose.

 

10. Be yourself. Very important. Being you brings glory to God because He is watching His invention performing exactly they way He designed it. It’s okay not to want to be a pilot if your purpose is to be the engineer who builds the plane. “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. To give you a hope and a future” (Jer 29 vs. 11). Those plans were custom made for you and your personality/gifting. If you don’t live out you and be proud of who you are, you will forever be delayed in achieving your dreams and getting to your peak.

 

Quite a mouthful, hey? My learning has not stopped because I am still living and life will happen. But I feel braver to face this life with God by side.

 

I really hope those mentees learnt something from my experiences and hope for the opportunity to inspire them again. Thanks to Lady Ann and Mokgotsi for awarding me such an opportunity and trusting me enough with their God given visions.

 

Lady Anne Mahlako Nyembe runs a mentorship program in Soweto called Sisters We Can. She is a member of Mokgotsi and is passionate about women empowerment. If you want to assist in any way/ attend her events, her contact details are on the “Keep in touch page”. You can visit Mokgosti on: www.mokgotsi.co.za. I will upload pics of the event on the Gallery.

 

Stay blessed.

 

Earn His Love

Do you wake up every morning expecting favor and blessing on everything you do? Do you plan for what is good? When we plan for what is good, we find love.

 We know that God is love which means that when we plan for what is good, we will find God in the midst of our plans. But sometimes we feel undeserving of that love because of our faults and transgressions against God. We forget one little thing though: There’s absolutely nothing we can do that will make God love us anymore than He already does. Yes it is true, let me share an example.

I have a 2 year old niece, Gugu. She is at her most curious stage of her life and will mimic everything you do and we love her for it coz she makes us laugh. One day she took a whole 2kg of soap and poured it into water, and her mother was obviously pissed. She asked her she was doing and Gugu said “a-washa-mama” (she’s doing laundry).  The mother would scold at her and show her that what she did was wrong, but the following day they are mother and child again, the soap doesn’t change the parent’s love for the child. She understands that her baby is merely being curious and they are learning. So whatever Gugu does, there’s nothing that could make her mother love her any more or any less.

It’s the same with God. We are all his children and He loves us just the same. Whether we choose to obey him or not, it doesn’t change the fact that He is our father and His love is steadfast. Yes honoring Him and obeying does have its rewards, but it doesn’t earn more love. So when we do wrong, He understands that we are merely learning and don’t know any better. Our wisdom as humans will always be limited and we need His grace to fill the gap for us. We might do something, thinking it’s the smartest thing ever, only to find that it was actually dumb. It upset God and got our lives in a mess (just like Gugu and her soap). Our Father knows that and loves us so much for He we are His.

 You are eternally loved by Him, accept it and start feeling worthy of it. However, this is then not a ticket to disobey Him and do as we please because we know He loves us anyways. We know that He disciplines those He loves and trust me, being pruned by Him is not an easy process.

Abiding in His love and grace does bear fruit on our lives, where we find favor, blessings and wisdom through obeying Him. The Lord said the kingdom of heaven is for those who receive it like little children. And children are big on forgiving, you can give them a hiding now and 2 minutes later they are laughing with you. When you tell them not to do something, they remember, they might do it again but if you catch them, you see the guilt on their faces. It’s the same with our heavenly father, He will have sufficient grace to forgive us for our transgressions only if we acknowledge that we have done is wrong (repent). God cannot be fooled, you can repent, but if your heart is not in the right place, your deceitfulness will bear fruit and it will teach you who’s Boss between you and the God.

God’s desire is that we continually progress, that we reach higher heights and go to new levels. Oftentimes, as soon as we make the decision to step out in faith and obey God, then fear will try to stop us. We will have thoughts like, “What if I fail? What are other people going to think? I don’t have what it takes.” Fear will do its do his best to try to convince us to shrink back and stay where we are.

Fear is a spirit. It plays on our emotions and holds us back. But the good news is that we have power over fear! The Bible says that perfect love casts out all fear. When we receive God’s perfect love, we will have confidence about the future because we know His plans are for our good. I’ve heard it said that fear is an acronym for False Evidence Appearing Real. Understand that fear is a lie. Today, choose to believe God’s Word and receive His love so that you can overcome fear and move forward into the good life He has prepared for you!

So you see; he wants us to receive and appreciate His love for our own benefit. And our works cannot earn us His love or make us lose it. It is only our faith that pleases God and rewards us for it. Remember that, always. He wants us to live a life of purpose, knowing that we are precious to him, no matter how badly we mess up. Our happiness matters to God and He gives us a new day, every day to be happy.

Many people are waiting for their circumstances to change in order to be happy and enjoy their lives. All the time I hear things like, “As soon as I get out of this problem, I’ll be happy.” “As soon as I lose ten kilograms…as soon as my business grows…as soon as my child straightens up…” No, if you don’t put your foot down and decide to be happy right now, there will always be something to keep you from being happy.

God never intended for us to put off our happiness. We have a choice to make each and every day. We have to set our minds in the right direction. That’s why David said, “This is the day the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad in it.” He was saying, “This is the day to be happy; not tomorrow, not when the weather clears up. Not next week, when I don’t have to work so hard. Not next month, when I make it through this difficult time.” No, choose to honor the Lord right now by choosing to enjoy your life. Get rid of the excuses and rejoice because this is the day that the Lord has made!

So if you are walking in a cloud of self condemnation, snap out of it. Tell your fears that you are loved, regardless and hold your head up high. Refuse to listen to your own excuses. Demand integrity, commitment and persistence from yourself in all you do.

Keep yourself lovingly and gratefully focused on whatever is truly important to you. Let go of any urge to be cynical, and allow your most meaningful dreams to flourish within your awareness.

Fill each day with richness and excellence, competence and solid, honest commitment. Know that it is all a gift; you shall delight in all of it. If you don’t find happiness today, this day will never, ever come back for you to do so. After all; the Lord who created heaven earth loves you so much and He thinks you are to die for. So you deserve every bit of joy that may come your way.

“Blessed is the man, who trusts in the Lord and leans not on his own understanding”

Is Economic Freedom possible in our Life time??….

 

 

Economic emancipation was one of the resolutions of the Freedom Charter that was drafted during our fight against apartheid. We have since obtained freedom on so many levels as a black nation, and yet our people remain poor. That which was taken from our forefathers has never been given back and the wealth of the nation still lies with the minority. Let’s look at a few redress methods on sharing the wealth of SA with all who live in it and perhaps answer the question; Is economic freedom possible in our life time?
2 weeks ago we saw the ANYL marching for economic freedom from Jhb to Pta, well in simple terms they were marching for the nationalization of mines. Now let’s think about that for a second. If mines are nationalized and all the revenue generated from them is distributed equally among all 50million citizens of South Africa. How, exactly will that be done? Or will the money be channeled toward providing free goods and services? I think maybe if they can be clear on the implementation, nationalization might just be an option. Well of course if we ignore the impact on investor confidence in our country. Yes we do need foreign investments, don’t let economically unlearned persons make you believe otherwise.
Another concern I have with nationalization is the management thereof. Look at all government owned parastatals and tell me which ones are successful. Not breaking even, but making an economic profit (as they should). Transnet was saved from the brink of disaster by Maria Ramos, Eskom failed us dismally 2 years ago and I’m still waiting to see if the new power plant will be built within budget. SAA is also another decelerating plane and the worst of them being SABC. They still cannot produce credible content, the leadership is in disrepute and they sometimes misspell words on TV (u know me and spelling). Given the above examples, can we then expect our mines to produce the same amount of revenue they are now, enough to sustain all of us forever? I don’t think so.
Another redress method, also suggested by the ANYL was taking back stolen land from whites. Well this is a very valid point and the government initiated the Land redistribution program some years ago using the “willing buyer-willing seller” principle. Well that process has been slower that all Mangosuthu Buthelezi’s speeches combined. I think we are not even half way through the targeted redistributions. Maybe lad grabs could work. Let’s think about it;
So you forcefully take land from a white farmer and you give it back to its rightful black owners. The land comes with no farming experience or equipment and it eventually becomes useless to the owners. We all know what happened in Zimbabwe. I’m not saying that we are going to end up like that, gees, Im not that negative about our country. Well our people have an option to then sell those farmlands for a handsome profit, after consuming it they are back to square one. Then where’s the sustainability in that solution?
I’m not being a typical South African who nags and complains about everything. I know I have just painted a negative picture on the above redress methods; the intention is create an open debate and have people weigh the downside of these solutions. Our leaders are so good at selling an idea by highlighting all the good that could come from them and forget to mention their possible shortcomings.
With that being said, let’s look at the next possible redress method. Desmond Tutu recently suggested that we impose a wealth tax on rich individuals. Well, wealthy people might then feel the need to reinvest/ save their funds offshore so they don’t have to pay tax. Simple. I am not going to elaborate too much about this. I found a quote by Adrian Roger that clarifies this method: “You cannot legislate the poor into freedom by legislating the wealthy out of freedom. What one person receives without working for, another person must work for without receiving. You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it”
Other redress methods were BEE, BBEE and employment equity. The founding principles are great but their implementation, questionable. We all know only a few have benefited from BEE and the rate of transformation in Corporate is very slow. Yes it. How many black senior managers do you know in your company? Exactly!
Ok, I must stop sounding like broken record with all these problems and bring forth a reasonable solution. I believe educating our nation is key to economic emancipation. Only a few families can afford tertiary education, which is key to opening us opportunities for decent employment. Perhaps the government should subsidize tertiary education or make it free even. Getting our nation educated might even encourage/sustain entrepreneurship and also create an alert nation that can make informed decisions when voting. However this solution does have its con’s.
First being the level of unemployment in the country. There are thousands of unemployed graduates who have the education but cannot get the needed experience. Government is far from reaching their target of creating of 5million new jobs by 2020. So far only 300k jobs have been created and we need 500k a year for the next 10 years to get there. This figure doesn’t even cover half of the unemployed masses currently. So our GDP has to grow at a faster level than it is now. Unemployment =Big issue.
The second big issue is the quality of education. The curriculum has deteriorated to scary levels. Finding Grade 11 pupils who cannot add fractions is a call for concern. Introducing Mathematics literacy was an insult to our education system, honestly. Are we then confident to hand over our country’s wealth to a generation that cannot count? We better think again.
The point of this article is not to paint a gloomy picture, but a realistic one. Our leaders need to go back to the drawing board to find and implement sustainable economic policies and plans. Economic freedom is a must and we need to have a plan on how to get there (obviously not by organizing a march). People are living in poverty, but do we give them fish or teach them how to fish? Is there a river to fish from and does it actually have fish? 
When we came into freedom, there were numerous discussions held before democratic elections. I am certain that economic freedom was part of the agenda, it would be interesting to know what milestones were agreed upon regarding this matter.
Please voice out your view on this matter so we don’t dwell on problems, but engage as youth to come up with solutions. These may not benefit us directly, but our children may grow up in a better South Africa.
“Ignorance is not always blissful”- Unknown

Believe in yourself

Sometimes people come into your life and you know right away that they were
meant to be there.  To serve some sort of purpose, teach you a lesson or
help figure out who you are or who you want to become.

You never know who these people may be but when you lock eyes with them, you
know that very moment that they will affect your life in some profound way.
And sometimes things happen to you at the time that may seem horrible,
painful and unfair, but in reflection you realize that without overcoming
those obstacles you would have never realized your potential, strength, will
power or heart.

Everything happens for a reason. Nothing happens by chance or by means of
good luck. Illness, injury, love, lost moments of true greatness and sheer
stupidity all occur to test the limits of your soul. Without these small
tests, life would be like a smoothly paved, straight, flat road to nowhere.
Safe and comfortable but dull and utterly pointless.

The people you meet affect your life. The successes and downfalls that you
experience can create who you are, and the bad experiences can be learned
from. In fact, they are probably the most poignant and important ones.

If someone hurts you, betrays you or breaks your heart, forgive them because
they have helped you learn about trust and the importance of being cautious
to whom you open your heart.

If someone loves you, love them back unconditionally, not only because they
love you, but because they are teaching you to love and to open your heart
and eyes to little things. Make every day count.

Appreciate every moment and take from it everything that you possibly can,
for you may never be able to experience it again.

Talk to people you have never talked to before, and actually listen. Let
yourself fall in love, break free and set your sights high.

Hold your head up because you have every right to. Tell yourself you are a
great individual and believe in yourself, for if you don’t believe in
yourself, no one else will believe in you. Create your own life and then go
out and live it.

“If you take your eyes off your goals, all you see are obstacles”

Author uknown

Last week I was inspired by a little girl who exhumed such confidence about who she is and how God created her. She was born with progeria, a disease that makes a person age quicker than other people. The rate varies with each case and for her, she’s ageing 5 times faster, so at 12 she lives in a body of a 60 year old. She has a tiny frame but is prone to all the sicknesses an elderly person has. Through all of that, she still sees herself as God’s beautiful creation and lives life to the fullest. She’s not just different, but special.

“A lot of people are dying inside because they cannot accept who they are. They don’t understand that God created us differently and he loves us just the way we are” This is a quote that was shared by Ontlametse and it is absolute truth. We are not our hair or our skin, we are souls that lives within. By her sharing such wisdom, there is no doubt that she’s very beautiful inside and her creator is very proud of her.

Believe in yourself, if you don’t who will. Learn to embrace every single feature about you and learn to love you. Self acceptance is the key to living a fruitful life. You stop trying to be like other people and practice being you. When you love yourself you won’t allow others to disrespect you or look down on you. When you love yourself, you do not accept anything less than you deserve. When you love yourself, its easier to love others without changing who you are. When you love yourself, you always have brighter vision for your life even when circumstances disagree. When you love yourself, there is no room to be jealous of other people because you are content and complete with all you have. You would do almost anything for the person you love and if that person is you, then you will never allow abuse, neglect or insult upon your life because you know you are valuable.

Just because no one has been fortunate enough to realize what a gold mine you are, doesn’t mean you shine any less. Your destiny is not cancelled just because of one mistake. Keep shining, keep running, Keep hoping, and keep praying, keep being exactly what you are already. Complete. Your biggest enemies in life are: Yourself and procrastination. Believe in yourself and go after your dreams. All of them!

“Without confidence, you are twice defeated in the race of life” –Queen iAfrica

But Libya has Oil….

The recently slain Libyan dictator, Muammar Gaddafi, ruled the Northern-African country of Libya for 41 years, until Libyan civilians decided they had enough. The longest-ruling Arab leader was killed by rebels this week, just months after his government was overthrown.

Time and time again, his name was associated with war, conflict, and assassination attempts.

So what exactly did he do during his four decades of leadership?

Yes, Gaddafi has spent millions of Libya`s money on personal ventures but is the average Libyan poor? We know others who take a country and destroy it until you feel like there is no hope of restoring this country… looting some prefer to call it. Did Gaddafi loot Libya in any way?

  • There is no electricity bill in Libya; electricity is free for all its citizens.
  • There is no interest on loans, banks in Libya are state-owned and loans given to all its citizens at 0% interest by law.
  • Home considered a human right in Libya – Gaddafi vowed that his parents would not get a house until everyone in Libya had a home. Gaddafi’s father has died while him, his wife and his mother are still living in a tent.
  • All newlyweds in Libya receive $60,000 Dinar (US$50,000) by the government to buy their first apartment so to help start up the family.
  • Education and medical treatments are free in Libya. Before Gaddafi only 25% of Libyans are literate. Today the figure is 83%.
  • Should Libyans want to take up farming career, they would receive farming land, a farming house, equipments, seeds and livestock to kick-start their farms – all for free.
  • If Libyans cannot find the education or medical facilities they need in Libya, the government funds them to go abroad for it – not only free but they get US$2,300/mth accommodation and car allowance.
  • In Libyan, if a Libyan buys a car, the government subsidized 50% of the price.
  • The price of petrol in Libya is $0.14 per litre.
  • Libya has no external debt and its reserves amount to $150 billion – now frozen globally.
  • If a Libyan is unable to get employment after graduation the state would pay the average salary of the profession as if he or she is employed until employment is found.
  • A portion of Libyan oil sale is, credited directly to the bank accounts of all Libyan citizens.
  • A mother who gave birth to a child receive US$5,000
  • 40 loaves of bread in Libya costs $ 0.15
  • 25% of Libyans have a university degree
  • Gaddafi carried out the world’s largest irrigation project, known as the Great Man-Made River project, to make water readily available throughout the desert country.

Here is a list of 10 things you may have not known about Gaddafi:

1. Revolutionary

At age 27, as a captain in the army, Gadhafi led the 1969 coup that overthrew the Libyan monarchy while King Idris was abroad seeking medical treatment. Banning vices like gambling and alcohol, Gadhafi proclaimed “Islamic socialism” as the new regime’s philosophy of governance. [TheDailyBeast.com]

2. Pan Africanist

Gadhafi proposed the “United States of Africa” – an idea first thought of by US Pan-Africanist Marcus Garvey — in which the continent would include “a single African military force, a single currency and a single passport for Africans to move freely around the continent.”  [Rediff.com]

3. Flamboyant Leader

Gadhafi was known for his highly decorative military dresses and caps, his noodle hair was his trademark. Whenever he traveled out of the country, he was known to be more flamboyant. On foreign trips, instead of staying at five star hotels, he set up camp in a luxury tent and was accompanied by armed female bodyguards. Some of the pictures taken of his palace here, after he was ousted, shows Gadhafi’s opulence and the extravagant life that he led. He also had plastic surgery to shave years off his appearance. [Rediff.com]

4. Weapons Smuggler

In 1973, British authorities intercepted the Claudia, a ship carrying five tons of Libyan weapons destined for the Provisional IRA. Though briefly chastened, he again began funneling weapons to the IRA after a 1986 American bombing—launched from British bases—kills Gadhafi’s adopted daughter. In 1987, British and French officials stop another vessel, the Eksund, with 120 tons of weapons and ammunition.  [TheDailyBeast.com]

5. Iron-Fisted

For four decades the willful, mercurial figure of Colonel Moammar Gadhafi ruled Libya with an iron grip while remaining a persistent thorn in the side of the West. Branded “mad dog” by Ronald Reagan, the outlandish antics, flamboyant dress and bombastic pronouncements of the self-styled “Brother Leader” made him a figure of ridicule at times. The erratic nature of his regime was underlined in 1984 when diplomats at the Libyan embassy in London shot at a demonstration outside, killing policewoman Yvonne Fletcher. [HeraldSun.com]

6. Car Designer

To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the revolution that brought him to power, Gadhafi in September rolled out a car he designed. The car is chock-full of safety features, apparently in response to high numbers of fatalities on Libyan roads. A government official calls it “the safest car produced anywhere.” [BBC.co.uk]

7. Hated Leader

Prior to this year, there have been at-least 8 recorded unsuccessful assassination attempts against Gadhafi. In 1993, over 2,000 Libyan soldiers plotted to assassinate Gadhafi. The soldiers were members of the Warfalla tribe, which rebelled because it was not well-represented in the upper ranks of the Libyan Army. The coup attempt was crushed by the Libyan Air Force, which was entirely made of members of the Qadhadhfa tribe, which Gadhafi belongs to. [Wikipedia]

8. Terrorist

Gadhafi supported militant organizations that held anti-Western sympathies around the world. The Foreign Minister of Libya called the massacres “heroic acts.” Gadhafi fueled a number of Islamist and communist militant groups in the Philippines, including the New People’s Army of the Communist Party of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. The country still struggles with their murders and kidnappings. In Indonesia, the Organisasi Papua Merdeka was a Libyan backed militant group. [Wikipedia] In the most notorious of several state-sponsored terrorist acts, Libyan agents blew up Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing 270 people, in December 1988. [TheDailyBeast.com]

9. Callous

Just six months after the Lockerbie bombing, Gadhafi donned a white glove to avoid touching the “blood-stained hands” of fellow Arab leaders at a conference in Algiers in June 1988. Elsewhere at the conference, he pulled a white sheet over his body as a screen while Jordan’s King Hussein spoke; refused to shake the hand of Moroccan King Hassan II; tanned and sipped coffee instead of listening to speeches one afternoon; delivered a speech railing against his colleagues as “imperialist lackeys;” and skipped a summit dinner without even bothering to offer an excuse. [TheDailyBeast.com]

10. Philosophical

Benjamin Barber, an independent political analyst from the US who has met Col. Gadhafi several times recently to discuss Libya’s future, said the Libyan leader “sees himself very much as an intellectual.” “As a man he is surprisingly philosophical and reflective in his temperament – for an autocrat,” he told the BBC News website. [BBC] In what appears to be a racially incendiary move, Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gadhafi, once offered to stem the steady influx of Africans into various European nations in an effort to keep Europe “white and civilized.” Gadhafi told Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi on a recent trip to Rome that the European Union (EU) should pay him at least 5bn euros ($6.3 billion) a year to stop illegal African immigration and avoid a “Black Europe.” [AfricaSource.com]

 In conclusion; Only God can give and take life. Maybe Gaddafi crossed that boundary, hence it comes back to him, I don’t know. But I do know that the West is the God for African leaders. Zimbabwe has had people suffering to the bone, but NATO has not had the energy to forcefully remove the government. Maybe they are waiting for the civilians to revolt, or maybe there just isn’t enough OIL unlike Iraq and Libya? hmm, something to think about.

People will cast all your mistakes in stone and write your achievements in the sand…

(Top 10 extracted from: www.newsone.com)

Sit Down!

  Don’t you get irritated by people who just do or say  things without think about them all because they are trying to create an impression that they are smart. Or even some who get into things they know very well they cannot maintain aka ukuFosta. Well I see a lot of those people and today I wanna tell them to SIT DOWN and behave rationally. As our Police Commissioner would put it; “You must just  Go Home and Shurrup!”

 So I’ve heard a couple of people complaining (especially ladies) that passengers in taxis always stare at them when they’re parked next to a taxi at the traffic lights. Well I used to sorta feel that way, until I decided to put myself in their shoes (which I was once in, for a very long time). Imagine you are sitting in a taxi, you don’t know the person next to you (so u can’t look at them the whole time), the driver’s head is the only thing you see when you look in front. So where do you look? Yep you’ve guessed it. You look out the window and it so happens there’s a car next to you and there’s a person inside it. You cant be expected to suddenly close your eyes all because the person in there might take offence.

To all the ladies who complain about being stared at here’s something for you:  Well sister next time you need to buy a car with curtains, ok?  pull them down when you get to an intersection! You are not the sun, so you aren’t too bright to look at. And maybe the person staring at you is actually being inspired. So Sit Down!

 Still on the driving topic; I have a serious problem with people who hog the fast line. This is usually done by those who drive big cars. The speed limit on most freeways is 120km/h, right. So this old man in his Q7 is cruising on the fast line at 115km/h and there’s a queue of cars following closely behind him. Some choose to overtake him and some flash their lights at him to make way of which he takes no heed. I guess there’s nothing wrong in what he is doing coz he driving at the maximum speed after all. And they definitely cannot jump over his car, so they better find another way to get past him.

Well, I have news for you grandpa: If people want to speed beyond the limit;  let them. They will suffer the consequences, not you. You are not a traffic officer, so you and your big car must just MOVE!!!

I don’t wear nail polish on my hands, ever. I sometimes have it on my toe nails in summer,  just to look neat and I make sure I replenish when necessary. But have you seen how nasty it is to see a lady with badly chipped nail polish that looks 5 weeks old? Uthole nomuntu wakhona is busy scraping it off with their teeth and it looks messy. Now they look like they were trying to design a waterfall on the poor nails. Sweety: If you know you’re not gonna maintain it, do not put it on. It’s untidy and it’s a bad reflection on your hygiene.

There are also those ladies who remind me of the song by Mzekezeke “Fosta njengo Mzekezeke”. These are the ones who wear heals and cannot walk in them. I have seen so many dreadful cases of young ladies walking around in malls. You sometimes even feel sorry for them yazi, and you can see that they are walking at a slower pace than they wish due to these platform shoes. And they walk like bayanyonyoba-Pink Panther style. Zero!

So if you’re walking with me and you want to play Pink Panther in a mall, I shall leave you behind. Either you take them off, or Go Home and practice!

Same goes with those ladies who shave off all their eyebrows and draw them back every morning. Hai, for you ladies, I have no words. Ask any guy, and they’ll explain my lack of words.

Ok, this is my last pick on the ladies. WTF is wrong with sisters driving around in their gowns or doeks in the morning? I see that a lot eKasi. Yes we understand it’s in the morning and you’re in your car, but you are driving on a public road so you actually are in public wearing your private stuff. It’s the same as you taking a taxi to wherever, would you go in with your sleepers and nytie? So why do it in your car coz people can still see you. Again, it’s a reflection on your hygiene standards. Make sure you look clean and proper when u leave the house, it doesn’t matter what car you’ll be riding ok.

Finally, this is the biggest SHURRUP im gona declare. If you haven’t read anything in this entire article, you need to hear this one properly!

People of South Africa, Soccer is not English, bathong! People are forever complaining that soccer players cannot speak English. It’s not a pre requisite to play games, right? So why should they make it a priority? Speaking English is not an achievement, but excelling in what you do is. Who of you have heard Lionel Messi speak English, Ronaldihno, Ronaldo? All the brilliant players who don’t have English as their native language are not good at it and yet we celebrate them on their soccer skills.

If they were call centre agents I would understand, but English doesn’t pay their bills, their feet do. So please haters, Shurrup. Go home, sit on the couch and watch people make money and maybe they will give you some to go buy airtime to put your English to good use :-)I really dislike people who cannot celebrate someone else’s achievement without finding fault. No one is perfect, yes, not even you. You might be close, but you aren’t there yet.

I hope this article  made for a good chuckle, and if you have more stories or a differing opinion to mine, do share. To those who might feel offended, askies shaam, even I am not perfect ok. So Go Home, Sit Down and Shurrup! LOL!

“Never take yourself too seriously, no one else does”-Unknown

                                                                                              

 

Life is Real

These are lyrics to a song I have grown to love so much. At first I thought the lyrics were very gullible and I didn’t understand why one would want to live like that. However I have since opted to adopt these principles as my own way of life.

Some people say that I’m too open

They say, it’s not good to let them know everything about me

They say, one day. They will use every little thing against me

Well, I don’t mind. Maybe they’re right

But that’s just how it is and I’ve got nothing to hide

A friend of mine, gave me an advice

She said;

Be careful and think twice before you talk about your life

Protect yourself against their lies

The more they know, the harder they try

To change your ways, To spread lies

And I know that could be right

But still I…..

I’ll live my life, the way I want

I’ve got nothing to hide, nothing there to hold

Life is not a fairytale

Life is about me, coz life is real!

Life is indeed real. Every decision you make, action you do or word you say is automatically written on the face of history. Yes we can make amends to wrong actions but we can never take them back. That’s just how life is, so we need to live every moment like we mean it and would be proud to read that chapter in our lives again.

Yes I will live my life, the way I want. I’ve got nothing to hide, nothing there to hold. As I celebrated my 24th birthday a few days ago I wasn’t really looking forward to it. My era of being the youngest in the team or the youngest to “do this or that” is over. 24 is such a mature age, I’m really an adult now L. But no matter how much I sulked, it changed nothing, I was gonna turn 24 whether I liked it or not. And really God encouraged me that, this is the one birthday I should really celebrate with the greatest joy because for the first time I am living a life that is totally submitted to Him. I have found my passion and I’m adding value to the lives of people around me.  I am closer to discovering His purposes for my life. So in actual fact this is the very first birthday worth celebrating in my entire life!

The song encourages one to be open in letting others know about your life and who you are. Obviously it doesn’t mean that you announce every detail about your life to everyone. But it simply means live your life in the light, having things to hide always complicates life. There’s a quote that says “We never really grow up, we just learn how to behave in public”.  As a child you behaved openly, you were yourself all the time, every time because you have not yet understood how judgmental people can be. Hence, as you grow up you start limiting who you are so you can conform and fit to people’s expectations of you at the same time denying yourself the opportunity to JUST BE, all the time.

We are all wonderfully and fearfully made by God, which means you are uniquely created by God the way you are for a reason. I am here to live out my purpose and give God glory and add value to other people’s lives that is why He gave me my personality, talents, heart and experiences. No one else can live out Thando they way I can and if I don’t allow myself to be me I will deny someone else to experience the beauty I have been created to add in the world. It’s the same thing with you, if you don’t live out who you are they way you were supposed to, not only are you doing yourself an injustice, but you are also robbing us of what you should be contributing to our lives.

I just want to elaborate on the 4 things that God uniquely gives us to live out our purposes and be ourselves. First being the heart God gave you.

The bible says “As a face is reflected in water, so the heart reflects a man”. Yes you heart is that thing that beats in your chest, but it is also described as your; bundle of desires, hopes, interests, ambitions, dreams and affections you have. Hiding your heart, will not reflect who you are, we will never experience who and what you really are. There are some things you totally despise and yet you tolerate them just to conform or project a certain image. Well guess what?  from the outsiders perspective that image you’re trying to project is who you are. Share your heart so it can be known, even if its not the sweetest, it’s still yours, God made it that way for a reason.

Secondly, it’s the abilities/talents, you have. You can sing, write, dj, debate, socialize, excel academically or even dance well, because it was a built in feature in you. So since you can shaya ihlokoloza very well, you might be scared to do it because your friends might think you’re ghetto or wild (just making an example). This limits you enjoying your music  coz u cannot express your dancing talent and who knows maybe bye  you being free and dancing it might encourage that shy introverted friend to stand up and dance, livening up the gathering. Perhaps you even get to chat with them and find out they are very good with Excel spreadsheets and they offer to help you with that dreadful project you’ve been struggling with at work. I know this is such a vague example but I’m just illustrating the goodness that can come from expressing the talents that come naturally to you. You have shared joy with your friend and they have also shared a talent with you.

Thirdly its our personalities. God gave you your personality for a specific purpose. Nothing about who you are is a coincidence. Your personality will affect how and where you use your gifts and talents. We might both be gifted in writing, but my inquisitive personality might lead me to write about politics and life, while an introverted personality might lead you to write about relations between inlaws or even respecting nature. Start questioning why you are the way you are and ask God what was His intention by making you that way. You will be closer to finding out who you are and why you are here.

Lastly is our life experience. If you really desire to be used by God, you must understand a powerful truth: The very experiences that you have resented or regretted most in life (the ones you’ve wanted to hide and forget) are the experiences God wants to use to help others. Everything bad or good works together for those who love Him. For God to use your painful experiences, you must be willing to share them. You have to stop covering them up, and you must honestly admit your faults, failures and fears. People are always more encouraged when we share how God’s grace helped us in weakness than when we brag about our strengths. Yes they are painful, but they have already been written down in the books of history and nothing can change those experiences. I believe that we should never waste our trials, from every bad experience I have had, I try and get the lesson out of it. I refuse to suffer in vain; I should at least come out a better person.

I speak from experience, I have also had my fair share of bad experiences and failures at times where I have made bad judgments. I am slowly learning to embrace these unpleasant experiences because how I deal with them helps me understand myself more. As such I don’t despise my weaknesses as they keep me dependant on God.

I will continue to share my heart openly, embracing my mistakes, exploring my abilities and trusting God with my life. I will live a life with nothing to hide and will strive not to pretend to be what I’m not. I’m sure some of you cringed when I mentioned my age, perhaps you’re thinking “does she really have to share her age in the blog?”. Well, that is a valid point, but again you are giving YOUR opinion about how I choose to conduct MY affairs. Don’t you think there’s something wrong with that picture?

Well I did celebrate my first birthday in style. At home, eating ice cream and watching cartoons. Oh, and I also wrote this lovely article. Love God and let him define you. Have nothing to hide because your audience (God) already knows everything about you. All you have done and that which you plan to do was already known to him before you were even born.

Finally, do not conform any longer, rather seek to be understood. Instead of wanting 2 b a clone of Mrs. Smith, rather be YOU, it’s less work & honestly soooo much easier and you might even surprise yourself in the process.

Life is Real!

PS: Some principles adapted from “The purpose driven life by Rick Warren”

Too Great not to be Celebrated

Can I illustrate how powerful perspective is; (see the paragraph below)

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. Death is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith; your destiny is not cancelled due to a few mistakes and failures.

You see the way you look at things determines how you react?  We don’t choose what happens to us, but we choose our reaction.  Depending how you look at them, death and failure are not such bad things after all.

Steve Jobs was one man who had a different perspective on life; he dared to dream and lived each day as it was his last. I’m sure you’re wondering why everyone is making a huge noise about his death, I also somewhat did, but after reading this I realized that his life was too great not be celebrated. From being born by a mother who did not want him and gave him up for adoption at birth, to being raised by parents who could not afford College tuition. This man has been able to build what is arguably the world’s most valuable brand as we know it today and changed the face of technology for the future.

This is a prepared text of the Commencement address delivered by Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple Computer and of Pixar Animation Studios, on June 12, 2005. Don’t switch off.  Read this speech, it just might change your life!

Let’s celebrate the man who took a big bite out of life!

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, it’s likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss.

I was lucky — I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation — the Macintosh — a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.

I really didn’t know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down – that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me — I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.

I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.

During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the worlds first computer animated feature film, Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT, I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple’s current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.

I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.

My third story is about death.

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.

I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.

This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960’s, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Thank you all very much

Steve Jobs

 

http://news.stanford.edu/news/2005/june15/jobs-061505.html?view=print

Encompass

 

 

The evolution of man is an imminent reality that sits on tempests

Are we the superior race or running a losing race?

Watch your pace

And make your case in every eventuality

Even if your case is regarded as a nonentity

Void of any substance

Life is subject to change

And love is pain

Although we know that it leaves an everlasting stain

We are captured by our own curiosity

Convinced that the world is our oyster

Yet we live in our own worlds,

So your world is your own oyster.

Lyrical acumen has no place in our souls

 As our souls are plainly driven by unconsciously conscious feeling

 

The aura that’s beaming and healing

Is the one we should pursue, yet never intrude

Pretence is temporary contrary to popular belief

Some games are played for keeps

Beware what you reap

For the journey of life is a tiring steep

It’s like the curious case of you and me

 Where we ponder our own being

Forgetting that a human being has already achieved by being

How special are we that we even forget how special we are

And how vulnerable we are

I say open up your soul

For it is the only part that makes you whole

And people cannot scold it,

Channel your anger and switch to creativity and productivity

Forget the Mr. and miss congenialities of this world

 And focus on your robust success

 

Always protest to what you detest

And remember not to forget

That you are

The only person you cannot seize to impress

By Xolani X Magazi

So very often we measure ourselves against other people and gage our success over theirs, and yet we fail to understand that we are here to run our own race. Not against anyone, but ourselves. Your gift and purpose are only unique to you and only you can have them fulfilled. Spending time envying other people’s achievements, not only wastes your time, but it also discourages you that you will never get to where you want to. Well, that’s if you know it is you want to be.

The place you want to be should not be where other people are, because that’s their destination, not yours. Set your own standards and beat them, only then can you grow. Other people’s goals are not yours, they may be similar to yours but they aren’t and you will not “arrive” at them in the same time.

Remember the true measure of success is not about where you are, what you have, who you are married to or where are you planning to retire. It is being at a place where God wants you to be at that particular point in your life. Being more like what he designed you to be. Be yourself, it’s the easiest thing you could ever do in this life time!

“Forgetting that a human being has already achieved by being”, this is so profound in that, we always seek great events or occurrences to bring us joy. Only special occasions put genuine smile on our faces, and yet we forget that the beauty of life is in living. Or rather: The Gift of Life is Life Itself!

As I am…

You see a picture of a girl carrying a new born baby. What’s the first thing that comes to mind? ; Teenage, pregnancy, right?  What if the baby is the child’s little sister or she’s the baby’s nanny? You see, just by merely looking at that girl you have already made assumptions. You are in no way judging her by, but you’re merely giving a natural reaction to what your brain has been programmed to.

The brain is a very wonderful thing, in that it always categorizes things even people. When you first see someone, the first thing it picks up is gender, then secondly its race (psychologists can help me here) and then the rest of the person is categorized, before they even speak. Maybe the person is a black male with dreadlocks, and you know a guy at work who has dreads and doesn’t wash them. So immediately your brain will sort of associate this new person with that image. Obviously you are a good person, you won’t allow that bias to prevail, so you stop those thoughts and try and approach that person with an open mind. So you are being conscious about it, hence you can control it.  But, what about those uncontrollable biases you have about others? You may have a bias against thick boere men, for some it’s against guys with All-stars or even blonde white chicks. Fact is, we always have a perception about someone before we even greet them.

Ok enough with the psychology lesson. You know, every single person on this earth is unique. No one who has lived or is yet to be born is exactly like them. All these people come in different shapes and sizes and they all have something different to offer this earth. You can find the most beautiful of souls driving a taxi. That is his job, not who he is. But the unconscious bias has categorized him in a box of “abomageza” and you don’t even bother to chat to them. Sometimes you see someone in a wheelchair and you’re scared to chat to them, and its either you don’t wanna bother them or you just feel sorry for them. It’s a natural reaction. But you might be missing out on the bubbliest personality who might teach you how to laugh at yourself.

Do you know why God denied Adam and Eve the fruit of knowing what’s good and evil? It’s because He knows that only goodness can come from him and He knows its measure. What may be good for you may not be necessarily good to me. And unfortunately we apply the same scales to people. You don’t like this “type of person” or that “type” of person, whereas in actual fact they are just a person. Break down the barrier and see them for who they are, perhaps you can learn from them.

People are just that people. And you are also a person.  Imagine how would you feel if someone had a negative perception about you before they even spoke to you? Well some people may say; “Well I don’t care, not everyone has to like me”, but what if this person is gonna be interviewing you for a job you really need? Their perception of you is rather unfair on your chances of getting the job, neh. Don’t you wish they could just give you a fair chance and treat you as the unique individual you are? Well, if you don’t want this done to you, don’t do it to others. Let no amount of status or money or popularity make you think you are better than the next person.

We are all created equal. Yes maybe we don’t get equal opportunities, but in God’s eyes we are one. You will find wisdom and growth in the strangest of places. I learnt this in a very funny way. I had just started my job at the bank and didn’t have many friends, so during lunch I would go sit outside for some fresh air. My lunch break would coincide with an old man who cleans outside our building and we liked to sit on the same spot. So when he found me sitting I would invite him to join me or when he’s been sitting and I come for my break, he’d move for me coz he had just finished eating. At first it was sort of weird, but I liked my spot so I kept on going back. Can you believe that man eventually helped me plan my father’s tombstone unveiling? And I used to type his kid’s CV’s for him. Together we’d listen to other people’s problems and share our own. Bab’Gcaba has been very instrumental in teaching me how to live with others people.

So you see, that whatever bias I might have had of people who clean floors outside the bank, would have denied me a great opportunity to have a father figure in my life.

What biases do you have against, what type of people? Try and challenge them. Ask yourself these questions;

  • What evidence do I have that this person in exactly as I perceive them?
  • Am I being logical?
  • What would be different from my experience if this was not true?
  • Where are this thoughts/ attitude getting me?

Again, no person is greater than another. We are all born equal. Treat others with the same respect and humility as you would like them do to you. “Love your neighbor as though you love yourself” because at the end of the day, we are all human. We are not our cars, education, family, race or gender, we are just souls that live within.

NgesiZulu kuthiwa: Umuntu, umuntu, ngabantu.