Always remember; never forget

Here are some things to always remember…and one thing to never forget.

Your presence is a present to the world.
You’re unique and one of a kind.
Your life can be what you want it to be.
Take the days just one at a time.

Count your blessings, not your troubles.
You’ll make it through whatever comes along.
Within you are so many answers.
Understand, have courage, be strong.

Don’t put limits on yourself.
So many dreams are waiting to be realized.
Decisions are too important to leave to chance.
Reach for your peak, your goal, and your prize.

Nothing wastes more energy than worrying.
The longer one carries a problem, the heavier it gets.
Don’t take things too seriously.
Live a life of serenity, not a life of regrets.

Remember that a little love goes a long way.
Remember that a lot . . . goes forever.
Remember that friendship is a wise investment.
Life’s treasures are people . . . together.

Realize that it’s never too late.
Do ordinary things in an extraordinary way.
Have health and hope and happiness.
Take the time to wish upon a star.

And don’t ever forget . . .
For even a day . . .
How very special you are.

The two visitors 

Two visitors came to see me, both at the same time,

Both were trying to win control of my body, heart, and mind

One was dressed quite plainly, one dressed fit to kill,

I couldn’t see the battle they were waging for my will.

One promised to give fame, friends and riches beyond compare,

Anything I wanted, it seemed, and while I was standing there,

He showed me how life could be, for a little while at least,

I couldn’t see beneath the clothes, to recognize the beast.

The other told of hard times, of sacrifice and pain,

Ridicule and persecution, nothing much to gain,

But there was something deep in this visitor’s eyes

That made me feel to choose Him, somehow would be wise.

I guess you know the outcome…..

Accommodate people’s personal choices 

Tell me why you feel my life choices offend you or are wrong to you?“. This is the question I mostly ask “nosy, know it all people” who enjoy prying into my personal life. And on a countless number of times, I realize they don’t always have any good reason for their disapprovals; it’s just something they themselves are uncomfortable with, their own fears, their self-created rules (dos and don’ts) for life.

In the end, those who are wise enough realize one simple truth: their fears do not have to be my fears; their life choices do not have to be my life choices. Their mission in life is completely different from mine!

The kind of man we will become in the future is entirely based on our life choices. So, sometimes you have to allow us to make our own mistakes and learn from them. We just need to know that we are answerable to our own choices. You need to allow us room to be men; to own up our choices and accept responsibility for the outcome…whether good or bad.

So, as difficult as it is, can we try this new year not to be quick to judge people? When you fear for someone’s personal choices, just pray for them that their choices, no matter how uncomfortable you are with them, turns out good for them.

It’s true we have to learn from other people’s mistakes and take caution every now and then. But it’s also true that what killed my mother is not necessarily what will kill your mother.

Simply, let’s make room to accommodate other people’s life choices. There’s a reason why God made us all different in the same human skin.

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2020

Quit the blame game

There is an expiry date on blaming your parents for steering you in the wrong direction.

The moment you are old enough to take the wheel, responsibility lies with you and you can’t afford to keep blaming people forever!!

The day you realize that you are in charge of how you approach problems in your life, and that things will turn out better or worse because of YOU and nobody else, only from then on that you would be a happier and healthier person and truly build a life that matters.

I beseech you…PLEASE QUIT THE BLAME GAME NOW AND MAKE THE BEST OUT OF YOUR TODAY!

Temptation

If you have been tempted in some areas and you have not fallen, it doesn’t make you a superman. Maybe you have not been really tempted yet in the area of your weakness or possibly the area of your greatest need which is not being met.

One of my favorite quotes has always been “wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he falls“.

That quote always keeps me silent many times when people are talking rubbish and going all spiritually hyper – being overconfident, self-righteous, judgmental and feeling immune to temptation.

You think you’re Jesus? 😜

Don’t burn your bridges

I was your bridge when you needed one

Your life saving help

To cross that mighty ocean

That threatened to swallow you alive

No matter how small my bridge

It helped you cross over

I bet the feeling was great

Like that of being alive

A new year to behold

Like I was to you, many have been to me

Life does get so hard sometimes

That every once in a while

We all need bridges to ride over our fears

It’s human to require another’s help in times of need

But if the bridges we burn after crossing

If our promises we fail to honour

If our part of the bargain we fail to uphold

We demonstrate a limited insight into life’s uncertainties

But life has a way of bringing us back

To the same bridges we travelled in times past

For good or for bad, our fate then we will learn.

© Mark Gadogbe (McApple)

Marriage & Personal Development Author

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Saints to temptation

Temptations prove our humanness. It is common to man. That’s why we say during the Lord’s Prayer “…and lead us not into temptation“.

But when your mess is out, know that everybody else around you will behave like a saint. Even many “men of God” behave like saints until they fall in one temptation or the other, then the story changes. Only then they realize they are humans after all.

Dr. Kim Kimberling puts it rightly: “Temptation is not a sin. Don’t forget that Jesus was tempted. Every person is vulnerable. Anytime you think you are not, you take the first step toward a fall”.

Marriage exists because sex exists?

There is a saying that many hold as true that “marriage exists because sex exists” and I’ve been trying to wrap my head around it.

Does that expression mean that many of us wouldn’t marry or even consider marriage if not for sex? Does that make marriage a “way of escape” so one can have their “hot and holy sex” devoid of the guilt of sin?

But how come then that many people marry so they can have “unlimited opportunity or access” to free, uninhibited, holy or guilt-free sex only to get stuck in the reality that sex even happens frustratingly less often in marriage than they expected? Is it sane then to just bluntly recommend marriage to young people struggling to control their sexual urges, drives and appetites as if marriage really will solve their problem?

I have heard countless testimonies or should I say confessions of people who MARRIED FOR SEX and ended up becoming more miserable than before. There are sad stories of people who could not even express their sexual freedom in marriage, which apparently was supposed to be the realm where they could have all the sex they want, but now rather feel imprisoned by it because they have to literally “beg” their spouse before they could even get some sex.

Talk of the frequently unmatched libidos, work schedules, stress levels and the countless reasons partners give to avoid sex on the regular, it becomes detestable to some Christians that they no longer have authority over their own bodies (biblically) to even explore other ways of sexual satisfaction except to wait on their partner until they are in the mood to offer sex.

Many have begged the question “why should one be left literally at the mercy of another in marriage to have their sexual needs being met?” To force oneself on one’s partner even when your sexual needs are not being met will be totally condemned as insensitive, emotional abuse and worse case, rape (which is a chargeable offense). To satisfy oneself outside the marriage is even worse and a complete no no! Why not just have sex with oneself (masturbate) then for all the reasons one can find…to avoid the temptation of infidelity, to avoid forcing yourself on your spouse, to avoid constant arguments over sex or becoming a bother to your spouse, etc?

You may have very justifiable reasons to go the option of “sexing oneself” and that may solve some of your sexual problems but does that even make it right or is that even a safe zone in marriage? What about the risks of it becoming an addictive habit and making you desire even your spouse less and less? What about that which was supposed to be a temporal solution or alternative option in the end becoming a bigger problem than the actual lack of regular sex? Can you even openly discuss that with your spouse and would your even “unavailable, busy or uninterested in sex spouse” give their approval or interpret it as equal to cheating? Are you willing to risk breaking your marriage if your partner should chance on you “enjoying yourself”?

Christian views on the subject are even so varied and confusing if you want to convince yourself whether self-pleasure is right or wrong in marriage. Even the mere question of whether sex is a need for survival like food that one cannot do without, the Christian community cannot agree on, and you want to have just one right or wrong answer on that very sensitive subject of self-pleasure? 🤔😊

That’s just by the way, but more seriously, with all the sexual issues that throng marriages and many times wreck it, is it still fair to say MARRIAGE EXISTS BECAUSE SEX EXISTS? Is it still sane to encourage people to marry and then all their sexual needs will be solved?

Well, these seem more like rhetorical questions but more so, an evidence of my mental struggles anytime I try to read wide to keep an open mind or to broach certain subjects. 🤣🙊🙈

Thanks for reading. Do share your thoughts…we learn as we share.

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2019

Sharing about our lives

Some people believe in not sharing anything about their life with others. Well, sometimes you never learn any new thing doing that and you never get to be of help or be a mentor to anyone by doing that.

As we share part of our lives with others, we impart knowledge, life experiences, and we learn both ways. A word from someone can reorient your life, make you do some re-evaluation and put you back in line with your goals.

But that does not also mean you should welcome or entertain every voice, else you get confused because people always have something they want to say and are just looking for who to say it to. You need to know what you want and work with that.

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2019

Realities of life

When I was very young, I had a favorite “motivational” song. I could sing it all day. I didn’t know who owned the song but it has stayed with me ever since.

It was the best perspective I had on the realities of life even before I began experiencing much of it as an adult myself.

The lyrics of the song goes like:

“WHEN I WAS POOR, NOBODY CARED FOR ME. WHEN I WAS NOTHING, NO ONE KNEW MY WAY. THEY SAID I WAS UGLY, TOO UGLY TO BE LOVED. THEY SAID I WAS TOO POOR, TOO POOR TO BE A FRIEND. BUT NOW THAT I’M RICH, EVERYBODY WANTS ME. NOW THAT I’M RICH, ALL THE GIRLS COME TO ME. IT’S SO EASY TO SEE, IT’S MY MONEY THEY LOVE. IT’S MY MONEY THEY WANT. LOOKING FOR A FRIEND AND A LOVER FOR LIFE, LOOKING FOR SOMEONE WHO WILL LOVE ME FOR REAL; IN THIS CRAZY WORLD, NOBODY CARES FOR ME”

We all have moments like that when we come to people and they just don’t want anything to do with us. They mock us, treat us like dirt or nonentities just because of our present circumstances. They feel “better” than us so they don’t want to be seen with us.

But we know, one day God will bless our hustle and we too will become somebody they will wish they had never pushed away. Thankfully, only God knows a man’s future from his today and only God decides who wins or loses in the end, not our fellow human beings.

The beautiful thing about circumstances is that they do change!

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2018