Life does not always give what we want

​We all have had our share of ups and downs.

A million unanswered prayers, constant failures, unmet dreams, plans falling apart, feeling depressed and feeling not good enough for people, sicknesses that will never leave and you know it’s just a matter of time and you will say goodbye, people causing us pain, people treating you like garbage, having a smile on your face but with a broken heart inside…just losing it and not having a grip on life

You feel God’s being unfair, totally silent and unresponsive. You can’t help but to blame God… what kind of a Father sees a child’s pain and doesn’t act?

But then, can a loving father always save his child from every shit? Can you always be there for your child? No matter how much you wish to, can you always save your child from the grips of the Law? 

Why trust an Omnipotent God who can’t save you from every shit? 

Maybe same way we will fail to meet our own child’s every need no matter how much we try…Maybe same way the Omnipotent is unresponsive sometimes?

Maybe it’s because the Examiner is always silent during the test! And no matter how hard the test is, you have to figure out the answers yourself! 

Maybe there are some things He leaves to us to battle on our own and claim our own victories over. 

Maybe the strength and wisdom to carry on He will supply… But the battle we must fight ourselves till our last breathe. 

Giving up is not an option God desires for you, but your choice to give up is not a guarantee that He will step in. 

If you chose to hang yourself over a problem, He will not always come running to cut off the ropes. 

Life is hard, so many things will not go well and would have nothing to do with God not loving you or cursing you. We just have to keep at it, keep pushing, keep fighting and keep getting up if we get knocked down…if we are are gonna win! 

As for self-pity in the face of trials, it never gets us anywhere. 

May it be well with our soul! 
(c) Mark Gadogbe (McApple) 

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Restoration…

The axe forgets; the tree remembers the scars,

Tomorrow at the scent of Heaven’s rain,

It will sprout again bearing fruits,

Fruits to which you will come to feast,

Forgetting you once cut short a life,

That God did not allow to die.

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Mark Gadogbe (McApple)

The Marriage Race

Growing up, I learned very early that many times we fail at a task because we do not prepare well enough. Hard work pays and it’s as simple as that!

I also observed early in life that many times, most marriages fail because we do not prepare well enough, we do not work hard enough, we do not put in as much effort there as we do our careers, we seek too many comforts that we bail too easy and early enough when the comforts we seek do not arrive too soon. Marriage is no rocket science but it’s still hard work all the way through. Yet, with all the hard works too, it still will not work well if we don’t build it on a solid foundation of Christ and a great deal of “marital knowledge”.

Good knowledge will always be a vital tool in every endeavour; without it every venture perishes (Ref: Hosea 4:6). It is in light of that and my resolve to see my marriage last till the end that I recently made it a life goal to not let a day pass without reading something (even if it’s a sentence) on marriage. Aside books, I subscribe often to different daily marriage devotionals and I’m really learning a lot. Mark Twain said “the man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who can’t read” and I find that to be true. Similarly, I believe a man who makes the effort to acquire more marital knowledge (and applies it) will have a better marriage than the man who doesn’t and just goes through the motions.

I think what I learned today from the recent marriage devotional plan I subscribed to (a plan adapted from Dr. Kim Kimberling’s new book “7 Secrets to an Awesome Marriage”) was interesting:

“Let’s compare marriage to a long distance race. The truth is that most of us did not prepare well for the race. We just jumped in and someone said go and we went. We did not train. We did not change our habits or behaviors. We just ran. So it is not surprising that not too far into the race some of us were ready to bail out. Others seemed to be hanging in, but they were really struggling. It comes down to this.

Everyone in the race needs hope. Hope that they can make it the distance. Hope that there are a whole lot of water stations along the route that refresh and energize them. Hope that their spouse is running side by side with them. Hope that their spouse is in it with them to the end. Hope in the truth that they are not running the race alone – God runs with them.”

How to make marriage successful is never learned in a school syllabus in our formative lives and if we do not make any effort in our adult life to seek that knowledge then I wonder on what foundation of knowledge our marriages will be built on and how well/far we will run the race. Maybe attaining the “marriageable age” naturally confers on us all the marital knowledge we need to achieve success, huh? Or, maybe growing up and observing our own parents’ marriage is all the knowledge we need, huh?

Well, whatever it is, why not start a daily marriage reading challenge and see if it is worth it?

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Mark Gadogbe (McApple)

ONE DAY…

One day we all will get the chance to tell our stories and be a source of hope and inspiration to many.

We will tell them about how rough the road was and that not all happy endings had a happy start. We will tell them what kept us going in the face of adversity and how our many adversities prepared us and shaped us into who we have become and how in solemn reflection we would wish we never had it any other way.

We will tell them how their perceptions and presumptions of our today are flawed by them not knowing of our yesteryears. We will tell them how much more they will see us in a different light and come to appreciate us if only they will be patient enough to read the whole book and not just the summary of our lives.

Till then, we bear no greater agony than the scattered misrepresentations they have given our lives…our untold stories!

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RANDOM THOUGHTS ON RIGHT TIME FOR MARRIAGE

Once, I responded to a very interesting question from a young lady on whether it is best to get everything right before settling down with a man. I believe many are still pricked now and then with that thought. My humble answer at the time was that “sometimes the fear and carefulness to get everything right makes one get most things wrong”. Looking back now, over a year since this encounter, I believe strongly that I can still stand by that answer.

I believe in many respects that when it comes to relationships and marriage, it is just a chance we all take…hoping, praying and working for the best outcome. Yes, there isn’t any fast rule or mathematics about it…it’s a chance we all take.

Ok, let me put it simply this way. You want a guy who is so over the top financially sound before you settle down with him, right? Good. But isn’t it also a chance? Or is it a choice? What is the guarantee that two months down the line, your very financially sound and stable man’s world can’t turn upside down? Granted, he must be handsome and well built. Good, but what shows he won’t get crippled and disfigured the next moment? Or, you think many who are crippled and looking “unattractive” today were born like that?

What is the guarantee that the things we look out for today will remain permanent forever? Even the characters we so admire in some men and women and upon which we base many decisions are changing with a little taste of money, attention, career prospect…just name it. Does that say anything about the saying that “the only thing that is permanent in life is change”?

You see, you are blessed if you will look back many years later and still see the same character traits in your partner after so much has changed since settling down. Don’t get me wrong yet. I am not in any way suggesting that you throw away your fanciful list of “the twenty traits I must see in my partner before it works out” for just an “anything goes” list. Of course, plan your life and set high goals for yourself but can you make room for a bit of chance in your life’s plan because things don’t always turn out the way we want or plan it?

Well, at this point I know my religion obsessed readers will come again with the usual “there is nothing like luck or chance in a Christian’s life”. Well, do I look like I care? All I know is over spiritualizing everything clouds the wisdom that God has put in the head of some Christians. Ok, back to my point before I totally deviate because that is a subject for another day.

So let’s look at it this way. You are a lady and you want to get married at 30, but at 25 a good man comes your way…will you take your chances?? He may not meet all the things on your list though…will you? You are a man and you want to settle down at 30 because only then do you see yourself financially stable but at 25 a good woman comes into your life…will u take your chances?? What’s the guarantee that your financial stability won’t even only come at 40? She must be a nurse, but it’s turning out she will be a teacher? Will you go for it?

You see, Grace, Grace and plenty Grace is what we need on that relationship/marriage journey. And that Grace is already available as we all take our chances with a great dose of God’s guidance. You see, God doesn’t even follow your very carefully laid out life plans on anything, including your choice of a partner and time of marriage. And isn’t that why you have to make room for chance? Trust me, it is that small room of chance that He occupies to guide well your life.

He could even give you your man when you are just 18…whilst you are still planning for the 20s and 30s. Oh, you doubt that? 18 is too young an age to marry? Ok, ask our famous Nigerian actress Omotola (Omosexy) if she regrets marrying at 18 or ever taking the chance. Yes, 18 I know, or so I heard.

I’m only using one reference? Yes. It’s because I want you to find out yourself about the numerous testimonies of people who took the chance when it came to choice of partner or right time of marriage. It’s all out there. Research it.

Your problem is not because you have not met the right person, your problem is…well, I will tell you in my next write up.

Till then…

Brace up! Take the risk! Take the chance!

Mark Gadogbe

First published on courageahiati.wordpress.com on September 11, 2014 as Guest Blogger.