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

Too many voices cloud our decisions 

Electrically speaking, the earth can be a very noisy place. Overhead power lines, electric substations, railroad tracks, various signal transmitters and many other sources contribute to signal noise found in any given location. Harmonics, 60 Hz background noise,  and magnetic field coupling can distort the measurement signal, resulting in apparent readings that are larger or deviate by an order of magnitude from normal. Selecting equipment with electronic packages capable of discriminating between these signals is critical

So it is with us humans too. There are always so many voices in our head on a daily basis that influences our decisions and choices in life. 

For almost every decision a man takes in life, he has to battle and differentiate between the voices from the devil, from God himself, from the church, from family and friends, from random people in society and possibly voices from colleagues and superiors at work, etc. 

Just for a moment, consider just about how many voices a man or a woman listens to or has to listen to in the choice of a life partner. Trust me, they are so many. And that’s just one in a million life choices or decisions. 😊

Learning to make the right decision in life is never easy and learning to listen to your own inner voice or even the voice of God is increasingly difficult with all the myriad of influences. 

No wonder many times we make a lot of “forgiveable mistakes” because we get confused trying to listen to everybody’s opinion or to please them. 

It is true that no man is an island so something or someone will definitely influence one’s decisions or choices. It is important nonetheless that we always watch this as we go about life and the decisions we face: Two kinds of people fail in life; those who listen to nobody and those who listen to everybody

It’s never easy but we must always pray for grace to learn to make the right choices at all times, knowing who to listen to and who not to. 

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2018

Death always teaches us about life

My biggest lesson and comprehension of life came from my mother’s death…and I’ve never been afraid to think about death or to talk about it since. But one thing I know is the experience has somehow made me an open minded person because I searched for so many answers. Sometimes my family wonders why I talk about death so much as if it is cool and seem to have a seemingly weird way of thinking. To some of them, they would rather not even think about death because they feel the more one thinks about or speaks about it, one is somehow inviting it into ones life. 
But I know if you’re in this life and all you think about is life, you’re missing it. You need to think about death because sometimes it takes someone’s death to teach you some valuable unforgettable lessons about life. Death is part of life and we have to accept that many times it throws a lot of surprises. Very many surprises…like the death of Ghana’s very own beautiful, young, vibrant, talented and sexy Ebony Reigns. Yes, I included sexy in describing her because sexy is never a bad thing, whether you like it or not. 😊

God is the giver of life and talents, but not all lives will be appreciated and not all talents will be seen as profitable to God or society…in the eyes of some people. No matter who you are, all of society will not accept you even if you do all you can to please them. Society can never love you for the totality of who you are…only God can! And it’s not entirely their fault because they can’t see the depths of a person’s heart as God sees it

Yeah, it’s right that “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks” and that “by their fruits we shall know them”, etc; but sometimes we need to look deep into a person’s heart before we judge them, condemn them or write them off. That’s how we kill people and their dreams even before they mature…quick judgements and instant disapprovals even in the Church. Sometimes I don’t know how different the Church is from society because we’ve messed it all up. 

It’s true that all a person can know about you is what you put out there. They can never know the depths of your heart and the extent of your connection with God, even if you act a certain way in Church or in society…only God sees your heart. 

I believe almost all gifts find their source with God. And irrespective of who we are in life and how we use those gifts, we are all searching for God to fully understand who He is and that’s why we can all not be at the same level of understanding of who God is and how we relate with Him. Truth is, He deals with, reveals Himself and relates with all of us differently. 

It is sad to know that not all Pastors (or us Christians) even will go to heaven, yet we are the same people who judge others so much more than we pray for them or even show them a bit of kindness. Humanity goes beyond religion…we are humans first before our quest for spiritual perfection and moral uprightness. 

We really seem to forget always that we are humans first before everything else turned us against each other. Even religion (e.g. Christianity) that was supposed to have made us better has made a lot of us worse (we use our religion as a cover to hide all the ills we do secretly and only paint those whose sins are in the open as the ones not deserving of grace but death). 

Never for once do we put aside everything and just be humans…created to feel for our own species. 

It’s very sad that everyone who is not a Christian we are quick to conclude is having bad influence on society and so their death shouldn’t matter. It is just sad because how many of us have family members who are not Christians yet their death will be a pain to us? Well, like I always say, if it never hits right at home, you will never understand what it means to lose someone…just anybody. When your time comes, you will know.  

Every human being is a soul and every soul has value, depending on how you look at it. No loss (death) is ever easy to bear. Only God knows the right answers to the questions we ask when people die and I sure can bet that sometimes, there are many who we mark for hell on earth because of certain lifestyles they have yet they transit into heaven…because in their dying moment something strange happens. Consider the sinner on the cross with Jesus. 

Our hearts must express sadness for all lost souls and their families…it’s just the right thing to feel as a human being. 

The world would be a better place if we put humanity above our differences and not make society and our denominational identities corrupt the values inherent in our humanness. 

Society has a way of forcing a certain imprint on you and call you all sorts of names just because they think you don’t fit in. Churches want you to look a certain way to fit in. Your family wants you to look a certain way to fit in. Your work place wants you to look a certain way to fit in. Your friends want you to look a certain way to fit in. Everywhere you go, you have to adopt a certain different personality to fit in. There’s therefore so many sides to a person. 

No wonder we act differently when we are in church than when we are in different other spheres within society (the world). Everybody is crying wolf their opinion about you or their way of life is the right way for you to adopt. So yeah, it’s cool when society doesn’t appreciate ones many sides and it takes ones death for them to now see the full package. 

But it’s very sad though and we need to rise above that! Till then we can only pray God continues to bless our hustle! 

Rest well Ebony! Your hustle has ended but society’s ill judgements will continue. We hope we survive it. There’s a lesson in your death…and we hope we learn it. 

©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2018

You’re just different…not abnormal! 

Truth is we are all created differently and we will all live vastly different lives. If the life that I live and the choices that I make does not look anything like yours…you don’t have to be too quick to question that. 

God is so wise that He’s given us all different destinies, different callings in life, different ambitions, different passions, different careers, different backgrounds, different life experiences, different everything. In fact, even our physiques are different. 

As long as we are within the will of God, you’ve got to let us alone sometimes and give us some room to breathe! 

But of course, if we’re outside the will of God, you’ve got to correct us and we have to be humble enough to accept correction…at least God will want that for us. 

Alright, so cheers to breaking free from all the labels! You’ve got to…trust me! 😂🙏
©Mark Gadogbe (McApple), 2018

Marriage & Personal Development Author