Tuesday, December 2, 2008

AM I THANKFUL??


It’s exactly a year today……….............

That I returned from a short trip to find that I was ‘suddenly’ homeless; where I called my home some days ago was no more!

That my family now reside in a strange place called a guest house; that we no longer have ‘our’ own place, we have nothing to our name except the clothes on our backs!

That our house had been gutted by fire, a lot of fire fighting outfits in Lagos were there and all of them put together were unable to do anything to put the fire out.

I wept, I could hear everybody telling me to stop crying
I could see my siblings, tired and sore from many hours of weeping.
I looked at everybody....... and I knew there and then I was embarking on a journey.....to the world of uncertainty.
Oh my God! Am I dreaming?..... God! would I wake up and find out all this is not true?

I went to see the place………..
Our house…. now a heap of ruins, fire burnt like chops of firewood, desolate and empty!
It had become...all rubbles, the remains of a house that once was.

God knows how I liked to complain about that house, how old everything was, how I longed for a new place, my own space, my own territory, how I desired that we would stop living in ‘that’ house…….but not like this!

My pictures! My documents! My letters! My hard drive! My books! My love keeps! My CDs! My gifts, my favourite shirt, my sentimentals, my souvenirs, my write—ups, my awards, our clothes, our furniture, our ornaments, our certificates, her money, our investments, her business, his money, our this, my that……..all gone! Just like that?
All ‘my’ memories of my past; all gone up in flames!
I felt my history deleted, all the evidences that I existed erased!

And twas Christmas day…in church, I was supposed to be celebrating my saviours birth,
but my eyes…..my eyes could not stop the tears, I could not stop crying……

How did we suddenly become homeless? How did a home, a drama theater, a haven all of a sudden become a deserted land? How did the herd become scattered without a shepherd?
I had become a vagabond, a fox with no permanent place to lay my head
(forgive me to borrow for my self our Lord Jesus Christ’s description of himself)

I miss that home, I miss the laughter, I miss the gossips, I miss all the fights, the arguments, I miss my freedom, I miss ‘my comfort zone’ I miss my favorite little ‘travelling bag’ that contained all my ‘life important stuffs’, I miss the sanity, I miss the chaos, I miss the feeling of security that house gave me.

Its been a year …… (and I sigh),
I have learnt humility; to depend on people, to receive from others.
I have learnt endurance, I have learnt time heals.......
I have learnt not to be attached to anything.
I have learnt more of the content of the character of most of my friends.
I have learnt more about my own strengths, my weaknesses and my character.
I have known providence, I have learnt to abound and to abase.
I have seen love, care, deceit, lip service and in-sensitivity.
I have also found grace, and mercy, and I can’t keep it all to myself.
I have learnt that I should be THANKFUL!!!

And like the Americans……………its thanksgiving!
(I like the fact that I am posting this around the thanksgiving season)
They know how to (even if it is temporarily) forget all their problems and sorrows and be thankful!!!!
The bible says in ALL THINGS! We should give thanks!
I would not give the devil opportunity to rob me of a thankful heart!

I AM ALIVE!
I am thankful for life, I have lost dear people this year (they are no longer concerned about having a house to live in),
I am thankful for all my friends (not every one has the blessing of having good people stand by them through tough times),
I am thankful for all the progress I have made this year,
I am thankful I have a job,
I am thankful for my health,
I am thankful that you are reading this, you are alive and you’ve got eyes to read this post,
I am thankful for all the things around me that make me smile and laugh,
I am thankful for the smiles I see on the faces of my family members, we've been through a lot…but we can still smile, we can laugh, we still have joy and we can dance! We are survivors!
I am thankful for the hope of eternity, (some people are dead and in hell),
I am thankful, and I want to keep thanking……………

And can I ask? ………..are you learning to be thankful?
I know the year’s rounding up; we still have wishes and dreams yet to come to pass, but
Can I ask you to make a list of the things you are thankful for this year?

Like I read recently, we should learn to give God a sacrifice of praise, sometimes it’s a sacrifice, and it does not always have to be convenient.
I want to scream over the mountains! Tell of God’s faithfulness to me, despite me!
I have been unfaithful, I keep messing up, but He keeps dealing with me in mercy EVERYDAY!
I am tapping my feet, ready to dance, If not for anything, the holy scripture says, let everything that has breath praise! And thank!

Psalm 150
1 Praise the LORD.
Praise God in his sanctuary;
praise him in his mighty heavens.
2 Praise him for his acts of power; praise him for his surpassing greatness.
3 Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet; praise him with the harp and lyre,
4 praise him with tambourine and dancing; praise him with the strings and flute,
5 praise him with the clash of cymbals, praise him with resounding cymbals.
6 Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD.

Psalm 124
1 “ If it had not been the Lord who was on our side……… Let ‘me’ now say!

Psalm 30
1 I will exalt you, O LORD, for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. .
11 You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
12 that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give you thanks forever.

Habakuk 3
17 Though the fig tree may not blossom,
Nor fruit be on the vines;
Though the labor of the olive may fail,
And the fields yield no food;
Though the flock may be cut off from the fold,
And there be no herd in the stalls—
18 Yet I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will joy in the God of my salvation.
19 The LORD God is my strength;
He will make my feet like deer’s feet,
And He will make me walk on my high hills.

I could go on, Psalm 149, Psalm 118……….on and on, I came across some interesting quotes too!

Cicero:
Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.

Francois de La Rochefoucauld:
Gratitude is merely the secret hope of further favors

H. U. Westermayer:
The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving.

Meister Eckhart:
If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice.



11 comments:

Enkay said...

This is so touching! And just the day before, 1st Dec, 2007 my wedding ceremony was rounding up and I didn't see u there. I was like, I will have Funke's head when I finally see her for missing my wedding!
And i must say dear girl, you are an inspiration for the rest of us by letting us know that even when it seems we've lost "ALL", we still have much to be grateful for.

Beulah! said...

***Deep Sigh***....Thank God!

Thanks Olufunke for sharing these experiences, very touching but a lot to be learnt from!

Anonymous said...

This is an heart touching memo that would most likely move even the most stone-hearted being... He that has kept you thus far would surely make out the best of you. Keep the faith in Him to keeping being thankful in all things at all times..

LG said...

HAPPY NEW MONTH DEAR'
IT IS WELL

deola said...

This is cool!

Tisha said...

yes
i have learnt the power of love
i have learnt to love and keep silent
we all live and love and learn
i am glad for the lessons you have learned

thanks for stopping by my blog
love urs and have been here b4

Dammy said...

This is my heart in print.
Can't be less thankful...

He's awesome!

doll said...

hmm... praise God...i luv dis

Danny Bagucci said...

hey... very "spiritual".... inspiring too.. often stuff doesn't work the way we expect it to and in oour wisdom we ask why..... but God sees the big picture and realizinng he has our best interests at heart can often be the key to accepting what happens inspite of the baggage that comes with it...

tobenna said...

Beautiful post Funke.
I really like the things you learnt as a result of the incident.

Though I would prefer to not have to go through that to learn them, but sometimes God lets things like this happen for a reason.

Good to see that you have your spiritually settled :)

You have a fantastic blog.
Don't stop writing.

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