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Proudly Human

'Been on faith pilgrimage the last 38 years. 'Been at the mountaintop and down in the valley as I sojourn carried by grace, and grace alone.

At Home

I miss it every so often because that is what humans do. And, I am one. Not that I enjoy missing it. That be far from me. That be far from it. I am no pig. Only pigs enjoy wallowing in the dirt. I am human, not a pig. I am created and breathe into after the image and likeness of the Creator. He has only made me a little lower than Himself. His person is what I take after. That is my place of rest. That is my place of refuge. That is my place of purpose. That is what I was designed for. I was designed to be like God. No wonder He calls me god.

Proudly Tunisian

Proudly Tunisian

At War

I am not going to stop breathing and beat myself to stupor, unnecessarily, just because I missed it. That is what the devil will have me do. That is how he gets his own pound of flesh from God. That is how He gets his own glory. Why will I want to oblige him? Why will I want to make the enemy of my God happy? The enemy of my Father is my enemy. There is no kidding around that. Kidding around it is simply an act of suicide - self capitulation.

For this enemy is not a passive one. His main task every day is prowling around looking for one he can devour. Note he does not just jump on just about anyone. Little wonder why somethings work for some, and not for others. Like any predator, he is on the lookout for weakness in his prey. He is very conscious it is war, but unfortunately, many of us are not. Some even go to lengths to argue for his non-existence. How more dumb can a person be?

"If a philosophy of life cannot help me to die, then in a sense it cannot help me to live."

— Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

The Art of War

The Chinese General and Philosopher, Sun Tzu, in his book, The Art of War, gives us a little window into what is happening here. He writes, "All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when we are able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must appear inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near.”

No wonder the enemy promotes the idea of his nonexistence. Our Field Marshall tells us "the devil is not just a liar, but the father (originator and life-giver) of lies." He is incapable of saying the truth. His very being is corrupted.

How so skillfully, the old serpent has mastered his craft. And, guess what he has not changed in "creation" years. Same old devil; Same old serpent. Same old strategy. Same old method. The same old way. When we think he has changed, we do so at our own peril. He does not know how to change even if he tries. And, why should he change anyway? Why will one want to change a winning proposition? It is working for him. For, the sons of men are so easily fooled.

Guidance From Home

No wonder our deliverer and Field Marshall tells us to, "be as wise as a serpent, and as gentle as a dove." These are no idle words. They are our strategy for warfare. He is telling us how to win in this warfare. I remember teaching on just the first part of this verse for three (3) good years, without exhausting it. Still more grounds to be gleaned, and more wisdom to be extracted. Truly our God is limitless.

Our deliverer was simply teaching us the "Art of War." He is telling us there is no dilly-dallying around life. Life is war. Arden Wilson Tozer, an American Christian pastor, author, magazine editor, and spiritual mentor, wrote, "Spiritual Christians look upon the world not as a playground but as a battleground."

The reverse is also very true: "baby, carnal, focusless, aimless, goalless, religion-driven Christians look upon the world not as a battleground but as a playground." The question is, which are you? The devil is alive and well, despite his disappearing acts. he is seemingly being who he is, "a con artist." He has taken his stance, which is yours? Do you know?

Staying in the Press

Staying in the Press

Drifting

“The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” (Sun Tzu) The devil wants to take you down without a fight. Will you let him? Are you letting him? How do you subdue an enemy without fighting him/her? In our local palace (dialect), we would call it "using remote control" on the enemy. That is putting in place occasions, situations, and circumstances that gravitate towards self-implosion (destruction).

The popular word used in this palace is the word "drifting" - to drift. The lights switched on for as I listened to Napoleon Hill's audiobook, "Outwitting the Devil." Wow! What a work of fiction loaded with a whole lot of truth. Kind of a little scary at first. I'll advise you to lay a hand on a copy it might just change your life, for good.

Unlike what a whole lot of people believe, the devil does not come to fight head-on. He obeys the rules of cons. "A con is one you will be grateful to for cursing you." "He is one you will gladly pay for you being under his employment." And, it starts in little seemingly insignificant ways. The intent is to stay under the radar, evade your attention until he has you fully in his grasp.

Drifting that is what the enemy specializes in. One seemingly insignificant indiscretion leading to another. And, then to another till it takes over the whole lump. Is that not what our Field Marshall meant when He said, "a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?" Just a little, not "a much." What makes a big man fall are not big things. They are the small seemingly insignificant things. Do you know yours?

The Mechanics

The same process of drifting can work for or against us depending on who is at the helms of affairs. Jim Rohn learns a thought to this. He says success nor failure happens overnight. “Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines practiced every day. Failure is a few errors in judgment repeated every day.” Using everyday computer linguistics, this can be rewritten as "Success is nothing but the programming (coding and re-coding) of one's brain to produce the desired end result."

It is the building brick by brick, action by action, task by task. By focusing on the things that lead to our desired end result, and we can make a difference. It is the understanding of cues, the desired rewards, and the building of routines around them. It is being settled on what the end game is, and breaking it down to long and short term goals. It is knowing and doing what needs to be done daily, weekly, monthly, yearly in achieving our 5, 10, and 20 years goals and targets.

The neurologist might not want to be left behind in all of these. He'll define success, as "the conditioning of old and/or creation of new neurological pathways in the brain, appropriate for the desired end game, as a result of the everyday messaging through one or more of the entry points." I believe you know the entry points to the brain, otherwise known as the five (5) senses. Right?

The meta-physicist sure will not want to miss out on the fun. He'll say, "Success is the daily messaging to the subconscious mind, through visualization and/or accenting, to go to work in bringing about the desired endgame."

Faith = Life; Fear = Death

All these are saying the same thing from different perspectives - looking at the same big elephant from different vantage viewpoints. Different views, same elephant. Note, none of this speaks about the role of the devil, yet he is actively working in and through each to try and make us fall flat. It is up to us to use that which we know to gain a higher vantage position.

The working element here, for each, is either faith (and love) or fear. Faith leads to success, just as fear leads to failure. Our God nature wars with faith, taking us from one level of glory to another. Our lower (fallen) nature, empowered by and in alliance with the devil tries to bring us down in shame.

As Sun Tzu further states, “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.” Do you know the enemy? Do you know yourself?

So, never ever forget, "Life is a battleground. It always has been, and always will be; and if it were not so, existence would come to an end." (Carl Gustav Jung) So, when things don't go as I desired, or when I miss it, I need to remember it is no isolated incident. It is all "part and parcel" of the journey, the struggle for supremacy. It does me no good to cry only because I lost a battle. I might lose battles, what is uppermost is that I do not lose the war itself.

"Mistakes are a part of being human. Appreciate your mistakes for what they are: precious life lessons that can only be learned the hard way. Unless it's a fatal mistake, which, at least, others can learn from."

— Al Franken

No Pity Parties

So, when things go wrong, when I miss it or lose a battle, the right response is not to call a "pity party," as our lower nature craves. it seems to think things will get corrected by such parties. More like wanting to share the pain with others, crying, and craving for their pity. The question is a pity for what? What does that buy you in the marketplace? Who says your solution is in their hands? They are no better themselves, mere humans they are.

Guess the next point of call is God, wanting to cry our way out of sorrow. Don't get me wrong. There is nothing wrong with crying. There is nothing wrong with the humbling of the soul. There is nothing wrong with the admittance of something being amiss. The question is, to what end is our crying, and for how long?

I checked with God the other day, and He told me He does not attend pity parties. Why then do we call them? When the solution is not in attendance. To tell people our God failed us, or to glorify the devil? The parties God attends are praise parties, for He dwells in the praise of His people. These are those who are undaunted by temporary seeming defeats, temporary setbacks,

Treasure in the Eye of the Storm

“In the midst of chaos, there is also opportunity.” (Sun Tzu) Amid the seeming disaster, there is also opportunity. Don't be blinded by the chaos that you miss the opportunity. As my wife will severally say, "bi awa ti sọkun, bẹẹ naa ni awa riran" (Yoruba proverb, transliterated as, "as we weep, so we see")

Napoleon Hill puts it this way, "Opportunity often comes disguised in the form of misfortune or temporary defeat." He concludes, "Every adversity, every failure, every heartbreak, carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit."There is always a bigger plan than my little happening. It is up to me to trust the hand of providence even in the face of seeming great loss.

No wonder the book of the covenant states the Creator's allotted portion for us is to given thanks in all things and for all things. Why? He's got us. His hands are big enough to carry us, and not bypasses His need for approval. If He approved it then He has already worked ou a means of going through victoriously. If He allowed it, then it is a light affliction working a greater weight of glory.

Acres of Diamond

So, why will I host a pity party for that which is taking me on the path of destiny? That is not a call to be callous, and insensitive. There is a place to cry. There is a place to be sober There is a place to hold it all together, but it is not as those who have no hope. We have hope. We have a future. we have a surety. And, He has said, "He will NEVER leave us, nor forsake us." We are fully invested in by the One who holds all things together.

So, I am simply going to get back up, dust myself, and keep pushing. A successful life is not one free of failures. It is one with a vision of success, which refuses to be deterred by failure. Don’t live in denial. Don’t be cowered by what people will or are saying.

It is your life. Pick yourself back up again. Be motivated by your vision of success. You can make it. You make it. Keep pushing. Keep practicing. Keep living life.

Keep being human, for that is what qualifies you to operate on this side of eternity.

I'm a Winner; A Victor.

I'm a Winner; A Victor.

© 2020 Akin Akinbodunse

Comments

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on June 01, 2020:

@Toba: Thanks for your kind words. Amen and Amen, to your prayers. Truly, we are victors in Christ Jesus. Our part is to always have our eyes on Christ. Just as Moses raised up the serpent in the wilderness and all who looked upon it were saved. Same for us. As we continue to look upon the Son of Righteousness, we are not only born again, we also walk in the kingdom and all it entails. As we continue to look, we are being saved continually on our pilgrimage, and we will be saved at the resurrection.

Toba Aboluwarin on June 01, 2020:

Thanks so much sir for this article.

Battles of life are real and Christ has worn the victory for us. John 16:33. Therefore, looking up to Christ we obtain the already worn victory. I think each time we stay in Him, we receive the victory but we lose when we shift our focus from him like Peter did while walking on water, he began to sink. With Christ by our side we shall walk through all storms in Jesus name. May he strengthen us to always focus on Him.

Thanks once again and God bless your ministry and wealth of wisdom sir.

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 30, 2020:

@Toyin: Thanks for your kind words. Thanks for taking the time to read it. It means the world to me. Blessings.

Toyin Martins on May 30, 2020:

Soul lifting post, thank you for the inspiration sir

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 30, 2020:

@Funmi: A resounding Amen.

Funmi on May 30, 2020:

Yes, the world is a battle ground but I will make it for sure.

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 30, 2020:

@Livingstone: Wow! I am blessed to know you are blessed by it. You are welcome to receive further articles. I do post on several other sites other than HubPages. I do have my personal webpage (https://www.uncleakin.com) and several pages on Facebook. These include,

Let's Talk with Akin Akinbodunse Page: https://www.facebook.com/letstalkwithakin/

Devotional Thoughts Page: https://www.facebook.com/DevotionalThought/

Devotional Thoughts Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/120019341421777/

Single and Blessed Page: https://www.facebook.com/singleandblessed/

Marriage Minute Page: https://www.facebook.com/marriageminutes/

You can connect through any of these as might interest you. I'll send you a mail.

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 30, 2020:

@Toyosi: Thank you, my sister. I am honored to have you stop by. Thanks for your honest feedback. I appreciate you. God bless you real good.

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 30, 2020:

@Collins: Amen, my brother. Thanks! I am honored to have you stop by.

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 30, 2020:

@Onyekachi: Thanks for your kind words. I appreciate you.

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 30, 2020:

@Wiljefros: Very well said, my brother. To fall is simply human. Not to rise up again is simply laziness of spirit, soul, and body. It is to be blind, visionless - having eyes, but unable to see. It is to hide away our endowment. It is to be an unprofitable servant. May we NEVER be named amongst such. A funny thought that came to me during this lockdown, was, "what if I was the only reason God shut down the whole world? How will I show Him it was worth it?" We each need to answer that question for our own self. Blessings my brother. Thanks for stopping by and sharing a thought.

Livingstone Joseph Moses on May 30, 2020:

Thanks for this wonderful spiritual enlightement , am so blessed and hoped to have more from you if you dont mind . I want to be part of ur uoward features . My name is Livingstone Joseph Moses , my email is ...livingstonejosephmoses@gmail.com. Would be so glad to hear from you soon . Thanks

Toyosi Agbolade on May 30, 2020:

Beautiful reminder of our Lord's purpose for our lives and directions to get to the Father.

God bless you Bro

Collins on May 30, 2020:

Thanks Akin for this piece. Very awesome, powerful and insightful. More grace my brother.

Onyekachi on May 29, 2020:

Great article and the topic succinctly captures it all. Every of the subs hits me. ...

As Sun Tzu further states, “If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

No pity parties, Treasure in eye of the storm, faith + m. ... A 'successful life is not one free of failures. It is one with a vision of success, which refuses to be deterred by failure. Trust God to continue to walk in the light of His word. Thank you sir

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 29, 2020:

@Mary: Yes, my sister. This life is sure not a playground. It is a battleground. Thanks be to God who has worked out the victory for us in Christ Jesus. Our place is to enforce this victory. So, the Lord calls it good warfare. Good, because the result has been pre-determined way ahead. However, we still need to work it out with fear and trembling.

Wiljefros on May 29, 2020:

Very inspirational. With this lockdown, it takes only the wise to know this is part of the batle for the soul. How many will use this time to thouroghly reflect on their spiritual state and mashall out plans to get back on their feet. To fall is no news, but refusing to rise is cictory for the enemy. Thanks for taking time to put the peice together.

Mary on May 29, 2020:

Thank you for this write up which is a blessing to me. Reminding us that in this Christian race, there is always a battle to fight to be a winner. The scripture be wise as serpent and be gentle as dove. There are lessons to learn in this biblical verse comparing the 2- serpent & dove .

God bless you

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 29, 2020:

@Ifeanyi: Amen! Thank you, my brother. I appreciate you.

Ifeanyi on May 29, 2020:

Thank you Akin. Very inspiring and faith lifting . More of His grace.

Akin Akinbodunse (author) from Lagos, Nigeria on May 29, 2020:

@manatita44: Thanks for your kind words. You are much appreciated. It is so fundamental that we be "sober and vigilant." Our enemy does not just want to steal from us or kill us, he wants to destroy us. That is if he has his way. God has fully equipped us to win in this GOOD warfare. It is up to each of us not to disappoint Him. May He continue to grant us grace.

manatita44 from london on May 29, 2020:

I like your approach. Your style is different and encourages thought. God gives us everything to use and Sun Tzu's Art of War is a great tool for us when we understand its wisdom.

We are actually engaged in spiritual warfare and hostile forces are flying about at all times. Watch and prey, we are told. Let us be vigilant with our selves and lift up our Hearts in surrender to His will and consciousness. Praise be!

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