Proverbs 31 Babe: The Virtue of Waking Up Early

“She gets up before dawn to prepare breakfast for her household and plan the day’s work…” Proverbs 31:15

I’m an owl. Naturally I do my best work when I’m at my desk late into the night, and in the mornings I prefer to sleep in. There is nothing wrong with this, per se; after all we can’t all be larks. Unfortunately, time is a precious commodity, and the world starts counting time in the morning. Accordingly, wise people wake up with the world- early birds who are rewarded with the proverbial worm.

A few years ago I paid attention for the first time to the fact that the Virtuous Woman of Proverbs 31 was also an early bird, and I thought, “If her results are anything to go by, joining this tribe is a move definitely worth considering.”

Now, I’m a self-made Morning Person, and I’ll share with you why and how.

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Meet the Boss: Derek Nwafor, Crystal Media 360

CrystalMedia360.com is an online radio and TV station on a mission to provide a virtual information and content source for people around the world to learn how to live a wholesome, enjoyable life. It provides music, news, notices, talks and poetry that educates, informs and uplifts people.

Enjoy my interview with co-founder Derek Nwafor.

Be Your Own Best Friend in 2018 and Beyond

Sometimes, we take self-love and self-care for granted. We get caught up with taking care of other people and other things, without pausing to take care of our own selves.

This goes beyond hair, skin, nails, diet or weight. When was the last time you took care of your spirit and your soul?

That new best friend who will come into your life and help the new you emerge, is you.

Revisiting the Christ in Christmas

It is the season of nativity plays all across the world. In the run up to Christmas, children, and their unfortunate parents, are pulled to a stage to portray a well-known albeit poorly understood story. This writer went one step further this year, from attending such a play to starring in one. As the Angel Gabriel, I had the enviable job of announcing the incredulous — a Virgin is to conceive and birth a son — credibly enough to be believed by cast and audience. Fiction for some, an interesting tale for others, and a source of wondrous joy for others still.

The story of Jesus has baffled many and it is hard to understand, why seeing as he is one of the most researched characters in history. If the accounts of the gospel writers are accurate, and there is research to show that they are, then Jesus was either crazy, a fraud or omniscient. His words distressed some of his audience so significantly they sought to seize and kill him multiple times. If he was simply mad, then I don’t suspect anyone would have paid much attention. Who, after all, chases after a harmless lunatic? If he was a fraud, then he should have been caught out sooner rather than later. The Gospel accounts state that twelve men, and some, left their day jobs to follow him night and day for three and a half years. Then, they put their lives in danger afterwards to tell his story. Many died telling that story. No one sacrifices their life for a lie. If, however, he was omniscient, then we should have been listening since yesterday.

I have always considered myself something of a truth seeker. Those who profess to speak the truth have always been worth listening to. Truth is one word that featured quite prominently in Jesus’ more famous descriptions of himself. It is one thing for someone to profess to speak the truth, it is quite another for that person to declare himself the truth. Yet, the Carpenter’s Son, as some called him, would make many a bold assertion about his identity. As a teenager exploring the boundaries of the faith of the family I was born into, I did ask many questions of Jesus. On one such evening, while at University and walking back from my lectures, I looked up into the night sky and asked, “Lord, where are you? Why don’t you make yourself more apparent?” I wish I could say I heard a voice from the sky saying, “Thou shalt do your homework”. What I got however was something less dramatic. It was a simple thought which basically said, “Are you seeking without that which is within?” It is a profound thought which explains the wondrous joy for those others at this time of the year.

The story of man has been a search for God. Over millennia, we have gone from discovering what we thought was God to creating him. Man’s idea of god has ranged from the morning sun to statues of bronze to the modern day concepts of science or ideology. What the statues and science have in common is their limitation in the fixing of the human soul. A god worth its name would inspire faith in men to do more good, give hope to those who had none, and love those who were unworthy.

It is these ideas that Jesus spoke of with jarring conviction. Jesus spoke of a God who couldn’t wait to be reconciled with his creation. The God he presented was and is unlike anything or anyone ever described. He would forgive the repentant regardless of what crimes had been committed and give them a fresh start; He would see beyond the actions of men to their hearts, testing their motives and proving their authenticity; He would chase after the one lost sheep and bring it home. And in keeping with the message he preached, Jesus would turn no one away. He would strengthen weak arms, restore lost lives, and love those who would murder him. His story is tragic, yet joyful; hopeless yet full of hope. If ever there was a God man needed, this was it. And what’s more, Jesus would declare that man no longer needed to seek God. God had found man. And He would come into the accepting heart and be to Him what nothing else on earth ever could — a friend for now and all time.

Ordinarily, the story of a baby born in a manger 2000 years ago should not merit a mention in the family tree, not to speak of the Bible. Yet, this was no ordinary baby. Love was the name of his game and he would play it until his final breath. Love your neighbour as yourself, he would preach. One of his disciples would later write, “God is Love”. As we celebrate the season with friends and family, and consider what we feel towards those dearest and closest to us, let us remember the One who thinks more of us than mere masses of carbon and consider his gift of love to us. The Carpenter’s Son is still worth considering.

 

 Osita Egbubine is a believer in the capacity of every human being to lead a fulfilling, purpose-driven life. He tweets via @ositane.

 

Also by Osita Egbubine: Beware the “Little” Vices and How a Son Stands

12 Verses from the Message That Just Give Life

The King James Version of the Holy Bible is incomparable. It has its shortcomings, chief of which is the older English that is sometimes hard to understand, but it also retains what my cousin calls “the power in the Word.”

However, if KJV is on one end of the extreme, The Message is definitely on the other end. Its language goes beyond simple English (simple English is Good News Translation and New Living Translation) to contemporary, conversational grammar that sometimes leaves you confused and reaching for an older translation to confirm (where does the Bible say this?!) and at other times, leave you exhilarated and in awe of God’s love, grace, mercy and glory displayed in the holy scriptures.

In fact, technically The Message is not a translation but a paraphrase, meaning that it’s not designed to be relied on as one’s main or only Bible. However, it’s certainly a plus for every believer to have. Not convinced? Check out these verses.

How Did the Hebrew Women Deliver?

You’ve probably heard many things about “Hebrew women delivery”. I’ve even heard of women refusing caesarean sections because they want to “deliver like the Hebrew women.”

It’s not a bad thing to want a vaginal delivery – it certainly has its advantages –but when this desire becomes spiritualized to the point of demonizing Caesarean sections and insisting on a vaginal birth or nothing, it is nothing short of ridiculous.

It becomes even more tragic when you settle down to read your Bible and realize that the entire “deliver like the Hebrew women” movement is largely driven by ignorance. How do I mean? Read more

Mummy, I Don’t Want Jesus to Die

My son recently said those words to me, and I was amused because he’s not the only one who has felt that way.

When Jesus told his disciples that he was going to suffer, be killed and on the third day raised to life, Peter took Him aside and began to reprimand Him. “Far be it from you, my Lord,” he said. “This will never happen to you!”

In response, Jesus said, “Get thee behind me, Satan!” Why? Read more…