Wednesday, 28 July 2010

It figures...

I am becoming very difficult to be around of late. I have balance and this isn’t enough. I know what’s right and wrong but still, does this matter? What does the depth have that I haven’t seen or better still the sky above that I can’t see? Where I live is called no point of return which means looking back is not an option. The problem I face is that I am neither falling nor standing, nor running or walking, in peace and not in peace.
I spoke to my cousin yesterday and all he had to say was wait. Yes, wait! On what? I may ask as if I hadn’t thought about this myself! What would you expect from someone with a name like Patience! I decided to speak to his mum about it, my lovely aunt and she said be brave, don’t give up, it would all work out. That’ll be the last time I call Aunt Courage she offers nothing new!
My next thought was blabbing my mouth off to a friend. We had known each other for years. In class she was the teachers pet. Every time the teacher needed to set an example he would always turn to her. In any event I began complaining as one does,
‘Freedom, what is the matter with me? I don’t seem to be able to live with myself. I know everything but this is not enough,’ I said.
‘Do you remember our time as kids and what the teacher said?’ She asked.
‘What? I forget please humor me.’
‘Nothing works in isolation of another we all need him to exist.’
‘What and who?’
‘Aha, it figures.’ So this was where I was going wrong! And here’s me thinking that I knew it all, I always knew there was something missing. It does go to show that I can’t live in isolation. Oh, and just for the record, folks here call me Wisdom.

Monday, 26 July 2010

Hot Pants!

‘High School certainly ripped the guts out of one’s manhood!’
The gallantry I portrayed was nothing compared to the knot that stung the insides of my stomach. It had come down to this day and I could not back out any longer. I had made all kinds of excuses in the past and today I couldn’t find any. I told myself that if I was going to get rid of the fear and frustration then it would have to be today. The timing was appropriate. We had been watching each other now for over three weeks and neither of us had been valiant enough to make the first move. I had convinced myself that my exams were near and I needed to concentrate every ounce of my energy into them. However today was different, I needed to throw myself at this problem without the many poignant excuses of the past. I had done whatever research I needed through friends in her class and my instincts told me that she had done the same for me. It was now or never I told myself and I had to go for it.
As I walked nervously towards her desk in a hall that looked more like a mausoleum with desks, people stared and whispered. Impaled by common sense within my subconscious I knew that these whispers where not as a result of my approach. That was easier said than done when I felt as though all the air within my lungs had been sucked away by a wind tunnel. I was so scared that the hairs in the back of my head stood at full length and the pores in my brow opened to release a shower of water that made me feel as though I was sinking in the Niagara. It was the here and now that mattered for me, I was no one of status to this crowd but I was going to be something if she walked out of that hall with me. I had to gamble and go for it.
I tapped her lightly on the shoulder and asked if she would follow me outside for a break. I had interrupted her day and I did not care. I told myself that what mattered was the fact that I had built up the temerity to be there and the sensation that would follow later if her answer was positive would be the icing on the cake. I did not have to wait long for as if in answer to my dreams she looked at me and my world rocked as she said my name and then proceeded to pack up her books and join me. In the confines of high school and at the age of seventeen I thought I had broken through a sound barrier that would take a lifetime of surprises to beat. How little did I know then that, ‘faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.’

Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Is this the life of the truth within us?

All the cheers on the ground could have been heard for many years to come as the voices echoed and the cries rang for hours on end. I hid behind the trees watching and savoring the moment when I would release myself from captivity and follow the sounds. No one could hear me, I was invisible but my heart pounded uncontrollably. I leapt out from behind the palm tree dashing underneath a nearby grove and stopped. I was out of breath. This had been my existence for countless days. If it wasn’t a grove or tree then it was an old forgotten barn or a shack by the river. I even crept once into the tent of a vagrant. He howled and spat at me. That night had been a long one trekking through the dark, killing the miles and hoping for day break. I had seen the street lamps come on at night and watched their brightness disappear in daylight. I was the ghost of the dark waltzing through the midnight silence, hounding each pavement endlessly while others slept.

Now it was again day break and I was hiding with still no thought of sleep. I missed my home, my life and prayed for a new one. I was a guest in other homes, the stranger that was stared at, then laughed at and finally loved. I was the stranger that needed to be part of others, belong to them and make my name. I was not the only one in these places as others like me where present with different intentions. They boasted a presence that left mine wanting. I couldn’t compete because of the rules. I had to play fair or else I would be disqualified. When ever I dared speak I was immediately silenced. In those times I walked out of the room in a storm, retreated in silence to the back of the house. Finally in the confines of the shed I screamed my lungs out and looked to the skies. I would hear my voice echo through realms of eternity. Then I would hear me comeback again to me. My own cries were still mine as there was no one out there but me. I had reached places that men were not welcome. I had reached places that served a greater purpose. Alas! I knew this and knew who I served.

I climbed out of the shed and stormed the house pulling down walls and knocking down dishes. Badgering my way again into the room as grown men screamed and ran for help. Others rent their clothes and threw themselves on the floor. Then there were tears as they realized my presence. I was no more the shadow in disguise. I had made my purpose felt within them and conquered all obstacles to belong. Alas! I was back in my place and close to their hearts. I was the truth in men and served my purpose. It had taken a while but I had come to be. I shall dwell in Jerusalem and it shall be called a city of truth…

Monday, 12 July 2010

Vain Oblations...

Gratitude is a sparkle, a tingling effect that has a blending of joy with tears. It is colorful through our veins as we shudder from sudden reactions to an internal glow of warmth and cold simultaneously. For me in the spiritual sense the only time that this is possible in our atmosphere and obvious to man is in the rainbow. Causing this sensation for others to feed upon is something we all should thrive for. Several years today I joined a firm where the challenges were pretty arduous with barely a moment for respite. Autonomy and self efficiency were hardly facets that one could herald in public. Nothing was at the tip of one’s finger tips and I sought assistance to complete my tasks from the more experienced employees. They were forth coming with ideas and past accomplishments that gave me the credence to do my job adequately. As I grew in experience, I realized that this help had been voluntary and it dawned on me that I had to find a means of returning the favor to my rescuers. I had received from people who were encouraged by my own career progression without the need for any personal indulgence. It was only credible to return this kindness in a similar fashion and so I waited patiently for my moment to come.
Time evaded us as it usually does and as I grew in experience with the job so did my colleagues. I found myself chasing a moving train. I was never able to keep up with them in time to return their help in kind. We never met socially to the extent that I could offer them help outside the job. I was restricted to the system of the work place to find a means of repaying them. They never complained but it bothered me because I felt indebted to them in one way or the other as they had given me the opportunity to exhale in my career. ‘How was it possible to help people who never needed help?’
Eventually I outgrew my position and moved on. Again things did not change in my new position, for the trend from the previous company followed me as I found myself again needing the support of others to make a difference. My debt had grown significantly as now I faced the prospect of not only owing my rescuers in the first company but the new assistance I was getting in my new role. A pattern was developing here that I could not make sense out of. I saw time elapse in my new role and found myself again gaining promotion with the strength and aptitude to now move up rank and change country. Here I was disappearing into thin air without the prospect of ever repaying the kindness that I had received. It was hard not to feel inadequate at such times and I made a promise to myself to return to them one day and balance the sheets.
As all things are possible when you put your mind to it my opportunity eventually came. With the many skills from my travels I returned to these companies expecting to restore balance. I had traveled the world and knew things that others did not. This was the chance I had been waiting for through the years and there was no better time to make matters even. Again I was in for another little surprise. I did things for them, believing I had restored my credibility but the joy in their eyes was none existent. Somehow try as hard as I did they never seemed to give me that sense of accomplishment. I did not see the awe in their eyes or sense the tingle of satisfaction from their demeanor. I found that even though my efforts where worth their while they did not give me the impression that we were even. If I was looking at ridding myself of this burden I certainly hadn’t accomplished it by this gesture. The right nods and handshakes were made but the fact remained that I was still lacking in my endeavors. I needed something else to make a difference and I certainly wasn’t going about it the right way.
Then I noticed another pattern developing, I too was becoming old in the job and the new recruits looked up to me for assistance. I was now a voice of wisdom and a liberator of others. With scanty eyes and vague expressions the graduates sought my assistance and I obliged them in any way I could, giving them every opportunity to make a difference and mould their careers. I was proud to see that I had contributed to their ambitions and supplied the necessary inspiration for them to make enormous career leaps. Soon I could not keep count of who had passed through my school of thought for the numbers increased and as time elapsed it became irrelevant.
After what seemed like a lifetime one of the graduates visited me and made it clear that he was available to help me in any way possible. He won’t give up no matter how many times I explained to him that his help was unnecessary. He was adamant in settling his debt and I could not find the words to let him know that this was not possible. The problem was he desired to help me in the way in which I had helped him. He desired to give me impetus for my career and inspiration to get further in life. Unfortunately having helped so many graduates I found his approach unbecoming. There was no creativity in his proposals as I always knew the reason behind them. They all boiled down to one thing. He was repaying a favor, and I could not see the point of this as I had not offered my help to him in the past in the interest of receiving something in return. It had been offered freely because I had received something from others freely. His desperation in trying to repay me now fell on deaf ears and to his frustration and dismay I was unable to give him the gratitude that he expected.
If anyone tells you that there are no coincidences in the spiritual world then believe them. With the Lord things are mapped out in a pattern according to his word. It is his wisdom that guides our existence and makes us understand the values that he has given us in life. In time I shared my own encounters with past colleagues and whilst confiding in them I mentioned the proposals that had been put forward to me by the graduate. To my astonishment I saw a sparkle in their eyes. They looked at me with gratitude as if I had just saved their lives. They congratulated me on my efforts and were truly amazed at how many graduates I had trained. Life had gone in full circle teaching me something that was spiritual. In the spirit there is no wisdom in paying back what you have received. To fully compensate your benefactor you must seek other means to see their smile in the rainbow.

‘I am full of your multiple offerings unto me, relieve the oppressed instead…’

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Suspense of a Cornerstone

I grew up in a town that looked like it had long been forgotten by civilization. Structure had been given to the town by the volcanic mountain that resided almost one hundred miles into the forest. Through its seismic symphony the mountain had purged lava that flowed through the town leaving huge boulders that carved small hills with forestry bordering the town from its neighbors. To add to its charisma a small river started at the Westside of the town and flowed south in to the Atlantic ocean making it an ideal place for settlers from the western world. The most prominent structures that could be seen in the town where those built by the Germans after the First World War, for they left an unforgettable sense of ruggedness about their strength. The bumpy nature of the buildings held their infrastructure in place through almost sixty years of evolution until my time. As a boy with fervor for adventure and discovery I could say this place lacked nothing for what I needed.

My parents had migrated to this town from our home in London when I could barely say more than two words. By the time I was seven I had discovered that one of the best forms of entertainment in my life was cinema. I loved the places I visited with my imagination in the short two hour period that most of the films lasted. It gave me the impetus to explore the town with vigor and create as many different forms of entertainment as one could find with my friends. We were driven like men on a mission cast into a domicile of battle. We walked for hours on long forgotten railway tracks covered with a blanket of shrubs and obscured from the world by tall verges of wild shoots. The fragrance of the ocean made the adventure merrier as the sea breeze blew through the old forgotten factory sites that had produced all forms of timber in their time. As we journeyed through these darkened verges one could hear the waves banging vehemently on the rocks making us feel inspired to the task that lay before us. I felt alive and in a place I knew I was meant to be for a reason.

At ten the reason for my existence became even more desirable. I pondered about things and wondered why I needed to search for the impossible. I didn’t know what I was looking for and that made it even more interesting, the mystery behind not knowing why I was searching for the unknown fascinated me. In our quest my friends and I decided to bring the movies to life. We were fascinated by the violence on the screens. However I don’t think it was the fact that men were beating one another that did it for us, but the heroism that was depicted through struggle as one group of people fought another. Alongside the older boys in the school we divided the classes from the highest to the lowest into two factions. One group which I considered the bad side at the time consisted of tough looking kids who just happened to love their role while our group which looked like the weaker side was driven by a force of struggle. Our sides were chosen by our characters, I cannot tell you how we all knew were we belonged but I can tell you that in my group we each had some personal vulnerability that made us relate to one another. If I had to put a face behind this today I would say that we admired each other more from our vulnerability than from our strengths. Somehow knowing that we were the weaker side made us stronger as a team. Everyone expected us to lose and we did many times but the few combat missions we won made our losses seem like triumphs in their own right. We would go through two weeks without a victory and then on one afternoon out of nowhere when you looked around the hall, a long abandoned indoor tennis court where we demonstrated our prowess, you would see only few of our soldiers standing having slain the powerful enemy using the imaginary laws of the land.

At the time it never made any sense how I could love to lose most of the time in order for one victory to seem extraordinary. However today which is a far cry from my youth makes me understand why so much fascinated me about the battles we fought and the adventures we made. To enjoy life spiritually you must love suspense. Suspense is the anticipation of what would be, suspense is giving your will to the Lord to make things happen that you would never have imagined were possible. There is a sense of humility behind this suspense because you leave things to turn out the way they do by the will of the Lord. There is patience in this suspense as you live in hope that as you survive through each day, there would be that day that would make your dreams a reality. To enjoy the spiritual world we must learn to accept suspense as a key feature to our characteristics. It is through this suspense that I realized that the playful war I fought with my friends those many years ago in the confines of the coast of West Africa was not just a war in one’s youth but a spiritual pledge in my existence.