Saturday, 30 July 2016

Conversation Saved My Life!

Something really special happened to me in the last week.



I had a conversation with a very dear friend of mine which I had been stalling for a very long time. After many postponements, shying away and practically running away from having the conversation with my dear friend, this week became the proverbial day of judgement!

One thing I'm grateful for is that this conversation saved the life of a deep friendship that could have been lost over what I'm sure would be so trivial in a few years' time that we would both struggle to even remember why it was important in the first place.

A few things I learnt:

1. It may seem far-fetched but solid Christian friendships are a threat to the devil. When you lose a true friend in Christ, you miss out on a great prayer partner, or you could potentially miss out on a wonderful destiny helper or even an encourager in your low periods.

2. As much as possible, value your relationships. Yes, not all are meant to remain for life but treasure the truly good ones and do as much as lies within your power to preserve them.

3. Communication is so important! Thrash it out, talk it through. Don't make assumptions, don't expect the other person to be a mind-reader. Don't allow thoughts and imaginations form in your mind - give them the benefit of your doubt! Ask!

4. Pray for your friends regularly. You never know what they are going through and at that point, the only person that they may be willing to speak with or who can really help them is God. I believe prayer is one of, if not THE best love language.

5. Good friendships are not devoid of conflict. Conflict will come, it's what you do that determines whether it makes your relationship stronger or ends it. When you know that conflict/disagreements are normal, it shouldn't surprise or upset you when they come. Deal with it, your friends are only human, they will never be able to be perfect or to perfectly meet your expectations/needs.

6. Learn to forgive and completely let go. Learn to be able to go back to the place of friendship even after a conflict (no matter how bad). I struggle with this as things may get a bit awkward but thank God for my friends who are teaching me how to go back to the place of friendship after an awkward bust-up :-)

7. It's okay to be vulnerable. 'Not every time macho-woman/man, sometimes show weakness'.. You're human after all. It's okay for you to show that you messed up and still face them afterwards. It's okay for people to see that you're not perfect... Learn to let your guard down without fear of being taken for granted or feeling like a fool (Even if you do, everyone has felt foolish at one point or the other).

8. Sometimes all it takes to make things right is a conversation and the words "I'm sorry".... For real friendships/relationships, it does wonders! Don't let that ever be difficult for you to say :-)

I like this!
If you have been holding back re-opening the door of friendship to someone dear to you, now is the time to go for it! Stop stalling, just do it. You never know just how much you are losing out! Go ahead, take that step, make that phone call, pay that visit, hear them out... Save your friendship/relationship. 
If you're really struggling, please pray about it. God understands and He is willing to help you.

Alrighty, that's all I have to say for now... What do you think, what lessons have you learnt in friendship? Please share!

Lots of love xxxxx

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Remember that 1 + The One is very social :-) Please connect with us on:
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Friday, 29 July 2016

Dear Daddy

My Darling Baba mi loke,

Oh sometimes Daddy, it sounds 'sweeter' praising and extoling you in my Yoruba language. It sounds so beautiful and so deep!

Indeed praising you in any of my Nigerian languages makes me enter into a deeper level of worship and praise! Thank You for giving us so many languages!! I look forward to praising You in multiple languages when we get to heaven *whoop whoop!!

Allow me to practice a little here...

Oba mi, Alade wura, Kabiyesi. Alade Ogo, Emi ni ti n je emi ni.
Alagbara giga
Kiniu eya Juda
Oyigiyigi
Atobajaye
Alewilese, Aleselewi
Ajinde at Iye
Eyin lana, Eyin loni, Eyin lola
Talaba fi o we!
Oba awon Oba, Eledumare
Oba Iyanu, Iyanu ni ise owo yin!
Ese o Jesu! Ese Oluwa, Ese O Oba to soro mi dayo
Orisun Ayo mi, Orisun Ife mi, Orisun aiye mi!
Mo gbe yin ga!!

Oh Lord I could sing of Your love forever!
Agunechemba 1
Omalicha!
Okorobia dinma!
Malite na gugu
Chukwu, Chineke, Igwe!

What an Awesome God You are!

You are beautiful beyond description, my God who's indescribable!
Victorious God, merciful King!
King of Glory, Awesome Wonder

Thank You for loving me Daddy.

I LOVE YOU!

Always and always,
One xxxx

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

LLL - Thinking Out Loud: Team Singlehood, Get Me Outta Here!!!

The reason why Love, Life and Lightchild is coming on Tuesday this week is Lightchild's fault!! *points finger*

Just thought to put it out there... Yes, I'm not loyal hahaha

#HilaryForPresident  + Couldnt find one of Michelle O pointing! *I digress* :-D
Ok, on a serious note though, better late than never. I want to really really appreciate Lightchild's contributions to 1 +The One despite his very (and I say veryyy) busy schedule. Thank you, thank you, thank you! God bless you loads. Like I say, often times, the later it is, the juicier it is... So ladies and gentlemen, enjoy this very deep and rich article for the week, I have no doubt that you will be blessed!

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If you’re like me, you probably saw the word 'Singlehood' and you thought, hmm... I don’t think there is a word like that. If you are extra curious, you probably picked up your phone or computer and went to our very best friend 'Google' to verify its existence. Okay, those who know me, know I like making up words, so there really isn’t a word called 'Singlehood'... Just think womanhood, manhood, boyhood, girlhood, singlehood, marriage.. bet you thought I’d say marriagehood....

For the sake of clarity, I am using the word singlehood as a reference to the time or period that we all go through from the late teenage years to the time we get married (for those who get married). For the last few months, I have been coming across quite a number of people in this phase, popularly known as 'singles' and we have engaged in different conversations on different topics. But as usual, the conversation finds its way to the “Are you single, why are you single, don’t you want to get married?” territories and I’m like, "Oh Lawdd.. not again!" Seems like once you mention the word single, the next thing that will mainly come out, 99% of the time is - marriage, partner, wedding, Bae, Boo... 

source
One thing that made me ponder after a few of these conversations is the misconception about what being single actually is. From this misconception, comes the subconscious discontent with some of the single folk, at any slight mention or association with the word “single”. It’s like a taboo, a disease, an ailment or better still a social disability to call some folk single, even though they are actually single. Like at church for instance, for whatever reason, you tell all the single people to wait behind for a meeting... (don’t know if this happens at your church)... The moment you hear that announcement, it is the very single ones that will bolt out of the door as if it’s another Tom and Jerry episode. 

And I’m thinking, for Pete’s sake, we know you’re single, you say you’re not! But why? Then you start hearing the excuses they give: “I’m married to Jesus, Bro Faith is on his way, so I’m not available, I’m single not searching... (fair enough, but you’re still single)... I guess it’s the general thought of “they are going to talk about marriage and I’m sorry, they don’t have my type here, no fish in this pond for me” that makes folks run for the hills.
All 'Singles' wait behind after service please...
So I’ve been trying to think and figure out why most people who are single, don’t like to be called or seen as single? 

Single.. Defined 
I think first of, they don’t actually know what being single means and is all about. If all you can think of is that being single is mainly a definition of your marital status, then you are grossly wrong. The simplest way to define being single is 'one'. Not two. Just one. You can add ‘not in a relationship’, not seeing anyone, not dating anyone and all other synonyms that go with it, but 'being one' transcends your marital status. You may not be dating or in a relationship, but you may not be “one at heart” - your heart may belong to Tom, Jack, Harry and Porter, or Linda, Lolinda and Lolita, depending on who you are or your experiences. 

Being single is that period of time we go through from the late teenage years to the time we get married. It’s a time when we really do get to discover and know ourselves more, discover our purpose and path in life, develop our core values, character and behaviour, build the first level of the foundations of our lives, which could largely determine the course of the rest of our lives (except in cases where there is some sort of divine intervention).

Get to know who you really are!
Singlehood is not a time to be endured, but enjoyed. But like faithful humans that we are, no one really tends to like the season or hood they are in. A 12year old wants to be 13yrs old, and calls himself 12 and a half years, the 53 year old woman says she ain’t 53 but 35yrs (she’s probably using the wrong dose of Botox). The single person is longing to be married, praying to God that He’d show some mercy ‘cos she don’t wan to watch The Notebook all by herself again', whereas next door, the married woman is saying, "God, you woke this man up again this morning, but why???" 

It all depends on what perspective you’re looking from. 

There are a lot of folks who think that the main focus during one’s single period is to find the right person to get married to, but they miss out on one of the most, if not the most crucial bit: are you the right person to be married to? 

I have heard quite a lot of folks, both male and female, go on about the “must haves” and “must bes’ of the person who will be worthy to be called their future partner. He must be this, he must have that, she must be this, she must be that and I’m thinking, “Jehovah God, I think you may have to get your tools out and form this new being out of the sky”. Then I now ask, “so if this person must be all of that, what exactly are you bringing to the table? What value(s) are you adding to the person? Can you or your character handle all that you are 'demanding'?"

One thing that is important to note is this: a huge part of our character, belief system, personality and behaviour is formed and solidified in our singlehood period. 
Folks be like “I’m waiting for Bae”.. Okay.. So what are you doing while you’re waiting for this Bae? That’s the time for you to work on yourself! Develop a character that will be able to carry and sustain the demands of being joined to another person. 
Develop and learn traits that a prospective partner will see in you and will want to be the one that changes your status from being single to married, if that’s the stage you are at. 
Everything is not about money, fame, material things, status, achievements, qualifications... All of those in the bag, coupled with a personality that is not nice, caring, but nasty, proud, arrogant, mouthful is not an appealing resumé to have as a single person. 
Your singlehood period is a time to to explore your strengths, work on your weaknesses and be a person that will end up adding value, not a liability or one that’s being tolerated just because.

Word!! (source)
Purpose 
The singlehood period is usually the time a lot of people will discover their purpose. Purpose brings focus, focus brings direction, direction will require some sort of action, actions will bring results, results will bring satisfaction, achievements and fulfilment. 
Basically you find what you’re living for, what you’ve been made for. You may not find everything (I don’t think anyone does at this point) but with whatever you find out to be your purpose, you will realise that it gives you a drive and determination to do and achieve something in life. 

A man or woman who doesn’t know what his/her purpose is in life will be everything but not that one thing they were made to be. And when you end up being what you weren’t made to be, you really haven’t been “successful” by the standards of the One who’s made you! It would be a dangerous adventure to be coupled up with someone who doesn’t know their purpose, isn’t working on discovering it and is just going with the flow... A rolling stone, gathers no moss... 

Standards vs Preferences 
Simply put: majoring on the minors and minoring on the majors. I’ve had numerous conversations and sessions with folks on this issue. And I can only say I understand this quite well, as I have had to learn this myself. Often times during the singlehood period, seeing that it’s the period where some of our core personal values and beliefs are formed, I have seen quite a number people build up a portfolio of preferences for themselves at the cost of building good standards and sticking to them where and when it matters. 

For example, everyone has a “list” of the kind of person they would like to date or marry. And this is even something some folks have stored up mentally, without writing the list down. I remember there was a time, quite a while back, that I said to myself... “I’ll only date or get into a relationship with someone who is into music, can sing well, has her own hair (even if they patronise the hair extension shop a lot), must not be below a certain size and above a certain size (not look like they are quite unhealthy)".... you know.. the list goes on. And for quite a while, I ran with the mandate. Boy!.... Let’s just leave it at boy! 

I wonder what YOUR list looks like!!
Little did I realise that all of these attributes were preferences of mine, which really, are shaped and moulded by elements such as what’s in fashion, taste, current state of mind, outlook, sometimes age, friends, exposure etc. 
The problem with that is that these elements are temporary and are quite subject to change without notice! You may have a preference that was developed based on how you were feeling at a given point in time, but then given a short time, you may lose the desire for that preference. 
I remember after watching the film Bend it like Beckham, I was so convinced that I had to end up with someone who had some mixed Indian background (whether British Indian or American Indian).. Some crazy thought that was, seeing that my life never even interfaced with any other ethnic folks apart from Africans.... 

On the other hand, having and running with personal standards (which are normally intangible and possibly eternal) would have been the right way to go, because these rarely tend to change come rain come sunshine. You can think of standards as things that are quite non negotiable.. God fearing, kindhearted, courteous, respectful, mindful, hardworking, family minded etc... you know.. those things that are character traits, that last long.. 

Sadly, I have known a few people who didn’t get to do singlehood right and have run off chasing after preferences and ended up in situations that they wish and long to have their single days back, so that they can relive it and make better choices. 

Enjoy being single! 
Being single isn’t a disease. It is a time to celebrated. So if you are single, enjoy this period! It won’t last always! Travel, work hard, do something, achieve much, discover yourself, work on your person (character, behaviour, beliefs and values) to become someone who adds value to another (if you are the type that wants to get married at some point). 

Above all, love God and serve Him with all that you are and all that you have. 
I say to my folks - ladies love God and hide yourself in Him well, you won’t need no man to come validate you or be swept away by the sweet nothings and mere words of men. Simply because the one that is yours will be one that will have to love God equally and when he does love God, he will be given access to you, to find you, in that place, where you’re well hidden in God.

........Lightchild

You can read other Love, Life and Lightchild posts HERE You can follow Lightchild on Twitter @light_child , Instagram @lightchildfamily and Facebook -LightChildFamily

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First of all, 'Singlehood' is not a real word??! *covers face* Lol

On a serious note, I wish every single person would read this. Again, I would give it to Lightchild for nailing it and putting very important things into perspective, particularly for people in Team 'Singlehood'.

I was speaking to one of my mentors and she said something I've started to believe - Thank God for keeping me single till now. As much as I would have loveddd to get married at the age of  23/24 (yup!), I am grateful for the things that I have learnt in this season and I can sometimes see why God hasn't allowed it to happen. There are many things I believe I wouldn't have been able to achieve or be. I was so fixated on marriage and the idea of meeting 'the one' that I wasn't too bothered about knowing who I am or what my individual purpose was (I mean, wasn't it all to get married?? Lol). 

Like Lightchild said, YOU have a purpose! One of my favourite Bible verses says that You are complete in Christ Jesus..." (Col 2:10) -  Not you're complete in your husband or when you have children or even when you have both and a great career + fame and fortune. Your completeness as an individual is in Jesus. 

Also, I believe very much in building yourself!! Improve yourself, be the best of you by God's grace! I wrote an article about being the ideal person in addition to looking for the ideal person HERE.

May God give us the grace to have the right focus as single and married people.

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Remember that 1 + The One is very social :-) Please connect with us on:
Twitter: @1plustheone
Google+ - 1 + The One
Instagram: @1plustheone
Email: 1plustheone@gmail.com

Monday, 18 July 2016

LLL - Thinking Out Loud - Can a Man and Woman be Just Friends?

"Not sure you're going to like this one"

That was the message sent with this week's Love, Life & Lightchild (LLL) post. Of course with that kind of message, I was more than eager to read what it was that I might not like so I quickly scanned the first paragraph and I laughed internally... A topic that I take a stance on passionately and have engaged in many a serious debates with different people on lol. I could almost bet what/whose case he would be going for, so I was ready to read and in Mortal Kombat's voice 'Finish him It' hehehe... But, I was pleasantly surprised.. I found myself nodding at many points, reflecting and learning as well... I will kontinu with my thoughts post-script so that I don't give it all way.. 

Enjoy...
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I was at a friend’s dinner party recently and a few of us (good mix of guys and girls) got talking about friendship and friends and then I decided to ask the one question that usually divides even the closest of friends, based on personal opinion: Can a guy and a girl just be friends? No strings attached?

"This is not my real face" :-D (source)
And as you probably predicted, the general consensus was noooooooooooo! It’s not possible, it’s either they have dated each other at some point, it didn’t work out and they stayed 'best friends' or one of them is secretly liking the other and is dying in silence, or waiting for the right moment to drop the bomb that will probably end their friendship – the “I think I like you more than a friend”.

For some strange reason, this whole conversation got me thinking real hard after dinner and on my way home, I decided to take a look at my friendships and relationships and ask myself if this 'general belief' is actually true in my own life.

You’d most probably not agree with a few things I’m going to say, but I will say it anyway!

So on my drive home, I had this conversation with two of my close friends (yes, you probably would have figured out that they were girls) and wanted to hash out this whole “guys and girls can’t be friends, something must have gone on somewhere, or is going on somewhere” business.
Who is a real friend? (source)
First question I asked was:

Who’s a real friend? What’s a real friendship like? What makes a true friend?
The dictionary puts the definition as “a person with whom one has a bond of mutual affection, typically one exclusive of sexual or family relations – a person who you know well and who you like a lot, but who is usually not a member of your family."

What makes a good and true friendship?
Love, trust, respect, honesty, being mindful, caring, compassion...

I look at my close friends that are female and I can say that the proof is evidently there: they know me to a large extent, there is a mutual level of love, respect, honesty etc. that we share individually and collectively…

They have seen me at my best and at my worst, they are not afraid to tell me the truth or reel me in if they feel that I am not doing what’s right or getting into situations I shouldn’t be in…

If I need to just chill and hang out, I can with them…

If I need some “advice” on certain aspects of life, I can always bounce this off them.

If I’m being unreasonable with my habits (health, work, eating), they call me out on that...

If I am low, they are there to cheer me up…

All of these I can say exist with those I call my close friends and it is vice versa. 

Friendship shouldn't be so complicated! (source)
The only one thing that is non-existing in these relationships or friendship is any thing that can be seen as emotional attachment, sexual feelings or desires. 'Those kind of things that you’d be doing or feeling for someone you’re married to.'

So one of the guys asked, how am I so sure that none of my 'close friends' don’t like me like that and are just 'pretending' to just be friends and waiting for the 'right time to surprise me' or perhaps it’s vice versa? My answer was this: I know that if I liked someone or was attracted to someone, I’d be upfront about it and not try to be sly and be acting like a friend when I know I’m thinking something else on the inside. That’s too much drama and stress. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Nah!

If one party starts to 'catch feelings', then you be honest about it, address it and deal with it. The outcome of this would usually test the genuineness of your friendship!

Sadly, because of the times we are in, when people see a guy and a girl together or talking or hanging out, they would usually want to add 1 plus 2 to get 15 and say there is something going on between them. "They are more than friends...." blah blah bla..

Truth is, it’s not that it’s difficult to talk about a man and a woman being just friends without adding emotions, feelings or sex into the mix.

Just friends.. Without adding emotions, feelings or sex into the mix (source)
Unfortunately, we are the ones missing out in the end, as most people are engrossed with being on the path or journey of finding 'The ONE' and everyone we meet or choose to relate with would have had to be passed through the “is he/she the one?” test before we decide what category we would like to place them – “Try this one out”, “Definite Bae of life”, “Friend zone”, “Avoid at all costs!”, “Time waster”, “Do not pick up”, “Flee all appearance of evil”, “Jesus bind you”!

There are some things that you’d expect that one would learn from home (parents, siblings etc.), but not everyone gets that opportunity in life for various reasons. There are some things about life, or even about the opposite sex that you’d learn from a true friend that in the end, will benefit you and the person you marry.

For instance, one of my friends once told me that because I tend to be overly nice, someone I am just meeting for the first couple of times could easily take it as me showing an interest (of more than being friends) in them or making advances or even leading them on to believe there is more than 'just being friends' on the table. This has saved me from potential sticky situations and drama.

As creative as I am, I can find myself in a fix when it comes to trying new things out, most especially mixing colors when it comes to dressing up (I prefer my safe monochromes – black, white, blue and grey)… But apart from my sisters, my friends don’t shy away from getting me out of my comfort zone when the need arises for me to 'dress up'. 

 
                 From this....                                                 ....To this (Thank God for my friends!) (source)

And the same goes for them as well - whether they are in relationships or not. It doesn’t stop, hinder or wade in on either parties being in meaningful relationships that lead to marriage etc. Where and when that’s the case, boundaries are respected, space is given and partners are well respected also.

Above being able to do everyday life things with friends, the fact that our faith can be shared, and enjoyed, (it’s not everyday fun fun, party party or go out stuffs), I enjoy the fact that I can engage in spiritual activities with my friends, whether going to Church, fasting, praying, doing some study of the Bible etc.

We’ve lost the true meaning of friendship!


Evolving times, media, society, changing times, modern times, call it what you want to. All of these factors have come into play when we talk about friendship.

In the early days of the Bible, as God intended it, you couldn’t just rock up and call any Tom, Dick, Harry, Potter, Chantelle or Shaniqua your friend! Friendship was considered to be a sacred thing, a thing that was never entered to lightly. In fact, for you to call someone a friend, there was some sort of covenant that was entered into, it was that deep! You can look at the accounts of God and Abraham, David and Jonathan.
Beautiful, innocent, pure, deep, friendship *No strings attached* (source)
I guess the answer to the question lies with each person’s view and perspective. Your view and perspective is your reality and that is what you will live by. And until we begin to see things, see life and live it as God intended for us to, we will be the ones missing out on the countless beauties and blessings that are around us, simply because we choose to let the world influence our minds and outlook on life itself.

No wonder the Bible tells us to renew our minds daily and not think like the world thinks. Easier said than done, I know but the rewards of living through God’s reality and not ours is endless!

So what do you think? What’s your take on it? Yes? No?
........Lightchild
You can follow Lightchild on Twitter @light_child , Instagram @lightchildfamily and Facebook -LightChildFamily
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Permission to be the first person to respond to Lightchild's question lol.

Many times, I have debated and vehemently asserted my opinion that guys and girls can't be 'just' friends.. Something is bound to happen to the 'just'. For me, it's just too risky to venture into.

Personally, I have been burnt and in other cases burned (sorry!). The first time I ever had a male bestie, I got burnt (oh sorry, I haven't told you guys that story! lol. I should blog about it!). However, I am still very grateful for that experience because it made me learn a lot! It made me more comfortable with guys, I learnt a lot more of what to do, how to do and it was an invaluable friendship. It didn't stop the emotions, indeed it fuelled the emotions without me even knowing! For me, that's the danger and the risk you run in friendships like that. It doesn't always happen but it can happen and it's not very pretty!

I have to say though that reading Lightchild's post made me hopeful. I think in an ideal world, guys and girls should be able to manage being just friends - and what a beautiful thing it would be. I have met amazing guys who I believe would have made fantastic friends but unfortunately that wasn't explored because I feared that lines would be crossed or blurred and we would have to start looking for ways to try to make sense of it all.

To be honest, I'm not sure I've been fully persuaded by Lightchild BUT I am more open and would hope and pray that we can enjoy friendships in its purest form - male or female.

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Remember that 1 + The One is very social :-) Please connect with us on:
Twitter: @1plustheone
Google+ - 1 + The One
Instagram: @1plustheone
Email: 1plustheone@gmail.com

Friday, 15 July 2016

Dear Daddy

My dearest Daddy,

It's me again! :-)

My sweet Gentleman of Galilee. Beautiful Saviour, Glorious God.. My Emmanuel. My Great and Mighty King. Awesome Wonder, Sovereign Lord!

I love and appreciate You Daddy and just want to take out these few lines to say THANK YOU.

Thank You for making me me.

Thank You for seeing ALL of me and still love me patiently, deeply and fiercely.

Thank You for looking out for me in such magnificent ways

Thank You for feeling my pain and comforting me through them all.

Thank You for seeing my secret tears and wiping them.

Thank You for encouraging me when no other person's words will do.

Thank You for being the reason behind my smile.

Thank You for giving me hope and making me look forward to what the future holds

Thank You for opportunities and open doors, You're such an Amazing God.

Thank You for my network of friends and family.. You have blessed me with the very best.

Thank You for LMPS, PWC, 1 + The One, GMC, MCD - Lol... So many acronyms.. Thank You G.O.D!

You rock, you rock major! Knowing You is beyond what I could possibly describe. I am complete in You. With You I have everything I could ever need or want or desire. You are my completion. Thank You Baba mi.

My no 1 King. My no 1 Friend. My no 1 Daddy. My no 1 Love. My no 1 Lord. My no 1 Saviour. My no 1 Redeemer. My no 1 Champion. My no 1 Provider. My No 1 Defence. My no 1 Protector. My no 1 Shield. My no 1 Crown. My no 1 Joy. My no 1 EVERYTHING.

Thank you a million times over and more.

I love You.. I couldn't say it enough.

Thank You Daddy.

With all my no 1 love,
One xx

Monday, 11 July 2016

Love, Life & Lightchild - Dealing With Sexual Temptation

Hiya everyone!!

Sorry for being MIA last week... What can I say, life happened! Lol *Sowiee*

Guess what though, we're back! Lol.... And back with bells on! Lightchild is talking about a topic close to my heart. Now for me, the icing on the cake (Cake! I love cake! Sorry, I digress) is that this time he is talking about sex and sexual temptation relating to men! 

On 1+ The One, we've discussed Sex a number of times - Waiting and Loving It, Team V for the Win and so on. Usually, it's written from a woman's perspective so I am delighted to read from a man's point of view.. Here you go, hope you are able to enjoy and of course be inspired....

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Everyone gets tempted, you get tempted, I get tempted.. It's normal! It's what you do with the temptation that matters.

So how can one deal with sexual temptation? How can you ensure that you do all that you need to do (that lies in your remit and power to do) to ensure that you can deal with it, if and when it comes? 

Here are a few things that have helped me and are still helping me.. 

1. It is always a choice

Image result for it's your choice
Your choice. Life is a sum of choices that we make, every minute, every hour, every day. The only thing we don’t get to choose in life is the family we are born into and possibly when we die. But every other thing we do, every other thing that happens to us, we have a huge part to play in. And that is why one can’t but stress that because the power to choose either life of death has been set before us, we must constantly depend on, listen to and give room to the Holy Spirit to lead us into making the right choices so that we don’t keep finding ourselves in situations that we need God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, Mary, Joseph and Elijah to come save us from! 

Right there in your closet, when you have your alone time with God is the best time to let Him work on your character, personality, weaknesses and emotions, so that when you go out and interact with the world, the Word that you have on the inside of you, working with the Holy Spirit leading you, will help you make right choices. For instance, when setting up a date or a meet up with someone of the opposite sex, it’s normal practise to carefully plan the whole date - what you’ll wear, where you’ll go, what you’ll do etc. However, most of the time, we don’t think to check in with the Holy Spirit just to see if He’s okay with our plans. 

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As you prepare for a date physically, do you take time out to prepare with the Holy Spirit? (Pic Source)
Sometimes I get a nudge when I’m going over my plans, that makes me rethink certain aspects of the plans (whether it’s a date-date or even just a friendly meet up) and what this helps me to do is to reassess the situation and not put myself in a position where I am more open to unnecessary temptations or scenarios that I’d need a bail out or 'the cavalry' to come rescue me. 
If I know that I find the person I’m meeting with quite attractive, I would make sure I don’t plan activities that could help build up unnecessary emotions and desires that I am not ready to deal with or shouldn’t be dealing with at that point in time. 
I have to say though that even with all of these precautions in place, it’s still your choice at the end of the day. It’s your choice to go in for that extra cuppa at her place or yours. Nothing just happens! One of my mentees said to me once, "I don’t know how it happened, it just happened!" And I said to him, "Dude, maybe you started it, maybe she did, but your clothes just didn’t come off like that!"

2. Don’t form the habit of going window-shopping
Your eyes are the windows to your soul. The same soul where a whole bunch of emotions and feelings can develop from. Whatever you feed your eyes with, will get stored into your subconscious, your mind and your inner person and it’s only a matter of time that these things will want to come out to play. If you find out that you’re more inclined to feeding your mind with stuff that is full of sexual content and activity, it is just a matter of time before you would probably want to ‘act out’ or experience certain thoughts that come to your mind. Remember this: what you see and feed your eyes on will someday become your thoughts. If care is not taken, your thoughts will become your actions. Your actions can lead to forming habits. And when these habits are not good, they could potentially become and lead to sin. 

3. Don’t fall victim to the 'I know myself mindset':
So if you’re not planning to take things further the right way, don’t say I know myself and I’ll just stick to cuddling and maybe kissing - no tongues! You may have perfected these, but believe me, as insatiable as we human beings are, a barrage of emotions, feelings and desires may engulf you, without asking for your permission and take over the proceedings at that point and before you know it, you’re paying for stuff you didn’t want to buy initially. That’s what window-shopping can do to you… 
You go to buy milk at the shop but you come back with ice cream, cookies, cream, cat food and a new TV. (You don’t even have a cat by the way!) In the same vein, you said you’d only just stick to hugging and cuddling but then you got more than you bargained for. That’s what temptation does, it leads you to situations you did not contemplate finding yourself in and ultimately, most times, getting more than you bargained for. When you put yourself in scenarios that are fertile breeding grounds for temptation, you’re opening up yourself to sin that will take you farther than you want to go, keep you longer than you want to stay, and cost you more than you are willing to pay. Can you really afford to pay that price? 

Say no to window shopping! (Pic source)
4. Think about the consequences, think about tomorrow:
If there is one thing that helps me personally, it’s the practise of thinking about tomorrow whilst living today. When faced with a decision or a choice to make, I always say to myself as a rule of thumb: would I be happy tomorrow about the decisions and actions I am about to make? Who would I have to say “I’m sorry” to? God or the lady or both? What’s the fall out going to be like? Happiness? Guilt? Satisfaction? Shame? After honestly going through these in my mind, once it’s apparent that it’s going to be more negative for me than positive, it’s a no brainer what the choice will be. You may feel like a 'no actions' person, or that person that’s got no game at that moment, but that moment will always pass, because it is what it is, a moment, one that could make or break you. Perhaps you’re the kind of person that has a good grip on your actions and you “know” that you probably won’t be giving in into any physical encounters. That’s all well and good. There is still the matter of the purity of the heart and mind. The fact that you may not be engaging in the physical act doesn’t mean that one is not succumbing to temptation in his heart. So you may want to guard where your mind goes, what it thinks about, how long you spend thinking about certain thoughts before you cast them down. Guard your heart, above all else, for it determines the course of your life. What you store inside will help you win or loose the fight over sexual temptation.
.............Lightchild

You can follow Lightchild on Twitter @light_child , Instagram @lightchildfamily and Facebook -LightChildFamily

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Like I said to Lightchild, this is probably my favourite post so far for obvious reasons. Often times, when we talk about waiting until marriage for sex, many people say that while some women can do it, it is almost impossible for men.
Well thank God that it is clear that it is possible. It's not easy (not at all), however, it is possible by God's grace. 
I like the last point above - think about tomorrow whilst living today. The choices we make today affect what happens tomorrow. We are not like lesser animals who have no control over our decisions, we are made to have a will and to have self-control. May God help us in Jesus name!

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Remember that 1 + The One is very social :-) Please connect with us on:
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Thursday, 30 June 2016

It All Started with a Dream...

It all started from what was 'girl's gist'. Anyone who knows me knows I like gist lol... Actually let me rephrase that before I get into trouble, I like stories! I love stories... I love reading them and I absolutely love hearing them. My friends are tired of me lol. I love hearing real stories, It's fascinating for me hearing people's stories. I believe everyone has a unique story and I enjoy finding them out! :-D Oh did I also say that I love asking questions too?! Oh I do! I should work for the FBI/CIA/SSS!! (Referrals welcome! :-D)

Anyways, I digress... So my friends and I were gisting when Yetunde aka Yettisho somehow started talking about how her life changed.. Simply put, I was drawn in, I realised we shared some similarities and I just had to ask if she would be willing to share on 1 + The One. As the fantastic person that she is, she obliged and here we are... I hope you are blessed (as I was) by reading.. Enjoy!

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YettiSho
I was 19 in my second year of University and I felt inadequate, my self –esteem hadn’t risen much from my early teenage years. I had decided to stop raving (aka partying, clubbing) as it wasn’t bringing me a boyfriend, every rave was the same and I felt empty. My best friend at University was the most dedicated Christian I had ever met, we had both decided to stop raving to focus on our respective faiths. We were very close course mates, work mates and flatmates but she was Christian and I was Muslim. 

It was never an issue, sure we debated but we were respectful enough that we never crossed lines and it never affected our friendship. I was a very confident Muslim, was adamant that there was nothing I would want more than to die as one going to paradise. I would speak with soo much passion and conviction that, those in limbo with their faith couldn’t help but give Islam a second thought. That all changed in one night. It was the month of Ramadan and I was feeling extra spiritual. I was at University and I had an early night. 

 I found myself in a waiting room alongside my best friend and two of my friends. I was soo scared!! I looked around at my friends and they were soo calm and I was the only one shaking and frantically worrying about my mother as we were waiting for the roller coaster to take us to the place we were to be judged. I woke up full of fear and not wanting to go back into the nightmare. I knocked on my friends door scared to sleep, telling her the dream I had, completely baffled that my subconscious wasn’t as confident as my conscious self. I told my mum about the dream, she brushed it away telling me not to worry that she has dreams like that all the time. So I pushed it to the back of my mind, shuddering at the thought. After having religious based conversations with friends I began to question things about my Islamic faith that I had never considered, why wasn’t the signs to watch out for in the last days in the Qur’an like it was in Revelations? Why couldn’t I pray to God whilst on my period what if I really needed him? Why did I have to learn another language to speak to God – after all he’s Omniscient?!

I questioned these silently and would pore over my Qur’an trying to find the answers. Me and two friends were up late at night talking about dreams, the conversation switched when my friend turned to me and said “You never talk about that dream that you had”. I was taken by surprise and lost composure asking why she would bring it up knowing how it made me feel. She pushed and told me that she felt the dream was significant and that I should come to her church, no obligation but she felt if I got nothing from it at least I would enjoy the music and would never have to go back if I didn’t like it. 

For me, I had been to many churches, going to faith based primary and secondary schools, having Christian friends and members of my extended family so it wasn’t new to me. In fact I would leave the church programs determined to be a better Muslim! The next day was Sunday, and when I woke up I suddenly felt apprehensive and regretted agreeing to go to church. I told my friend who reassured me again that I’d be fine. I went back to my room and said to God, “I’m going to this place today, whatever you want to show me I pray you show it to me”

I had never prayed like that before. When we got outside the church I felt like I couldn’t go in, and suddenly felt emotional and overwhelmed. So I got myself together, slightly embarrassed I entered. The praise and worship songs were familiar from my days at school, I closed my eyes and tried to hold back the tears that were fighting through. When the praise and worship ended, I quickly wiped away the tears hoping no one had seen. Before the service closed there was an altar call, “Of course you’re not going to get up” “Why would you even think of getting up”’ this was the argument I was having with myself. 

When the service closed I stood up pictured myself running out of there, but my legs didn’t cooperate with my brain. I stood there rooted, and I finally broke down. I lost all composure and cried like my heart was broken. No one came to me, not even my friend I came with, they allowed me to cry. I then felt a hand on my shoulder and lifted my head up, it was the Pastor of the church. “Why are you crying?” She asked me, “I’m just soo scared” I said. She then held my hands and prayed “Jesus, bring peace into this girls heart”, as if by magic the tears stopped! I tried to cry but they wouldn’t come, the confusion and fear I felt also stopped. She continued “Do you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour?”, in my head I shouted “No Way” but as I opened my mouth I said “Yes”

She kept speaking and my mouth kept agreeing, till she hugged me and said welcome to the family. I had another friend who had told me she had something to give me before I even accepted the invitation to the church, when she gave me the gift it was a New Believers' Bible ((it was surreal!). They all celebrated with me and I smiled, but I felt sick to my stomach shocked at what had happened and frightened at how I would tell my parents. When I got back to halls at Uni, I called my mum and told her through tears how I had become a Christian, how she doesn’t know how hard it had been for me as I had been soo miserable and stressed. My ramblings frightened her so she told me to speak to my uncle who had converted in his 20s too and was now a Pastor. 

I called him and told him what happened and told him I felt like I was going crazy, he was ecstatic told me they had been praying and that I’m not going crazy because he too had a similar experience. I came off the call relieved and started looking into my New Believers Bible, 'Share your new found faith in Christ to make it real' was the first chapter. So I did just that, I sent my friends a mass text that I had accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and saviour and I was no longer a Muslim. Many called me as they felt it was a prank, but joy and peace like I had never felt washed over me each time I retold the story as it began to get more and more real. 

My parents were adamant that it was a phase and influence from friends, so much so they ambushed me with senior leaders from the mosque I grew up in. Almost a year into my new faith they turned up unannounced at our home on a Sunday, my mother telling me she didn’t know why they were there after I asked her. They called me into the living room, my stomach churned as I asked God silently to give me the words to say. They said they heard about my issue and wanted to help me resolve it, I looked at myself thinking 'was I sick?' 

I asked what issue they were talking about; they proceeded to tell me that they heard that I had been influenced to become Christian. I told them what happened, about the dream and my experience in the church and they dismissed it as pure hallucinations and lack of knowledge on my part. My Father chimed in “Don’t mind her she’s on holiday”. At that point I turned to my mother like a child “You lied! You said you didn’t know why they were here!”. At that point they all descended on me and told me not to speak to my mother like that, through the chaos I had created I put up my hand and said, “If you believe in the God that you serve, pray to him to change me and he will change me you don’t have to do this” At that point they looked at me and each other agreeing that I had spoken wisely, I praised God as I left their midst to get ready for church breathing a sigh of relief knowing that I had truly found my home in Jesus.

This was 10years ago. I'm still in the faith and God has continued to carry me from strength to strength, pushing my faith further and validating my decision. I look at the person I was before, full of fear and doubt, there were times in my life when I felt alone; knowing Christ has allowed me to experience that even in the loneliest times of my life, I'm never alone. Even when I make the wrong decisions, I always have Him to lead. I'm bolder and I have a peace that I could have never imagined. It's the best decision I ever made.

You can watch Yetunde's Vlogs on Youtube - YetundeVlogs
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Were you blessed by Yetty's personal experience? Do you also have, or feel a void deep inside and you yearn for more? Would you like to also have this wonderful encounter and relationship too? Just say this simple prayer with me - 

"Jesus, thank You for dying for my sins on the cross. I appreciate and acknowledge your sacrifice. I want to invite you into my life today, come and fill this void Jesus, I believe in my heart that You are Lord and I want You to be my Lord. Please forgive me for my sins and make me brand new today in Jesus name. Thank You for a new start Lord, I give You praise. Amen"

Wow! Congratulations, your life just became amazing! Welcome to a new life, a new relationship :-) xxxx

Ps If you prayed that prayer or want to know a bit more about all that has been said above, please send me an email at 1plustheone@gmail.com. I would love to hear from you!

Also, if you would like to share your own experience too, please send me an email.

You can read other real stories HERE

Have a wonderful weekend people! Lots of loveeee xxxxx

Remember that 1 + The One is very social :-) Please connect with us on:
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Monday, 27 June 2016

Love, Life & Lightchild - He's Just Not That Into You If.....

So ladies AND gentlemen, I have to say that when I saw the topic of this week's 'episode' of LLL, like you I couldn't wait to read it!
In this week's post Lightchild is not holding back and I am lovingggg it! You asked, he's answered....
Without saying too much, let's gooo!

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Hallos! 

So I’m still trying to figure out exactly how I got myself into penning down my thoughts on Love, Life and Lightchild (Editor's note: Huh? My friend behave yourself! Don't let me 'cast' you!)) and with today’s topic, I’m thinking to myself...hmmm, I’m going to get some serious walloping for what I’m going to say on this topic.. 


So here's the scenario: You’re sitting down, thinking, trying to figure out, reading between the lines, crossing the 'i's and dotting the 't's, re-reading all the messages you’ve exchanged, analysed who calls who the most, who calls first, "Does he add some sensitivity or endearment in his responses?"... All of these thoughts, just to 'find out' the answer to the burning question: “Does he like me like me, is he into me into me, or is he just playing about?" 


The general consensus is that if you’re asking this question or you’re thinking along those lines, you’re probably in some sort of relationship, talking level or communication with the (person) guy, and you’re getting to the point where you're getting conflicting thoughts or signals and you want to clarify what’s up!

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I could tell you all the 'signs' you’d normally get as answers if you asked someone this question. It will include some of the following: 

He’s not that into you if: 
  • You’re calling him more that he calls you.
  • He doesn’t give anything away about himself that is deep revealing of his nature and personality. 
  • He avoids discussing the hard questions (where is this going to, what are we doing, what are your intentions).
  • He frequently cancels any sort of dates or meet ups you’ve both arranged and his excuses are ingenious and new every morning. 
  • You haven’t met anyone that is important to him (friends or family).
  • He keeps things superficial and isn’t really that proactive about asking after your well being.
  • There’s nothing extra ordinary about how he treats you and how he treats others.
  • He’s always about the fun and nothing substantially serious. 
I could go on and on listing these points but what if we looked at this from a different angle... 

There is something that I learnt a while ago, which you might have heard or actually already practise, it’s called 'Defining the relationship'. I personally believe that it helps to manage expectations when relating to the opposite sex (genuinely), simply because it practically takes away scenarios and occasions where you are inclined to assume stuff (and you know what they say about assumption right?). 
I tell folks - never assume anything (let's admit it, for women - and some guys too - this can be a little difficult) but you will save yourself a lot of heartache and stress if you don't make assumptions because he’s nice, he smiles at you, he asks after you, conversation and banter with him is well dope and he just simply ticks all the boxes. 


I have personally experienced that before - A few years back, when I met someone, who on a superficial level, I’d probably not get along with simply because we lived and led different lifestyles. But we got on well, banter was great, we seemed to be weird in unique ways and I took that for “Oh yes, looks like I’ve found a perfect match, thank you Jesus! *Praise Break, testimony time!*”. Then I started catching feelings and emoting emotions, only for her to tell me (after I had expressed some 'emotional caring emotions' to her ) “I’m sorry mate if you got the wrong message, I was only being friendly!” (Ouch!)

So my take on this is this: 
Never assume that you’re his Bae, or  he’s yours, if you both have never had the talk and there has been no intentions of such that has been spoken, discussed and agreed on, verbally - in a 'serious sense'. You will save yourself a lot of headaches worrying over something that potentially doesn’t exist! If he’s not playing the role of Bae with you and he isn’t seemingly travelling that way with you, you don’t play the Bae role to him to a point where you’re now getting all confused and asking yourself questions on whether he is into you or not. 

I know sometimes we may get impatient and want to just jump in and trigger/invoke the Article 51 on relationships, “Are we in or are we out?”. If you are the type of person that “needs to know what’s up”, then by all means, before the phone calls start getting to every day every night, the texts messages flow back and forth like stocks being traded on the stock exchange market, the conversations are growing well late into the nights and it’s becoming 2hrs, 3hrs on end and you’ve started catching feelings... pause... chill, have that conversation and define the relationship. 
Have that convo... Define the Relationship (DtR)
He may just see you and like you as a friend, the same way you may just see and like some other guy as a friend, genuinely. 

If he’s into you for the purpose of being more than friends, a man will:
  • Let you know for sure for sure, that he wants more (whether verbally, practically, through hints or his actions).
  • Give you the attention that you need regardless of how busy he may be and make what matters to you matter to him. 
  • May be the nice guy that’s nice to everyone, but when it comes to the way he treats you, it’s extra special. 
  • Talk to you and bring you in on life matters, serious issues and possibly involve you in crucial decision making that affects/involves him, simply because he sees you as the person whose opinion matters to him. 
  • Be there with you and for you, to do life with you, not just the fun stuff, but the serious stuff, even the times when things ain’t going down too well with you. 
But there’s nothing that beats this one... If he is into you, he will be able to look into your eyes, without fear, doubt or a flinch, and tell you that he is that much into you, to want to spend his life with you. And how will you know it’s genuine seeing that there are masters of deceit out there?
When he says it, you will know it in your heart, you will feel the genuineness and sincerity in his declaration and of course, he won’t just say it as mere words, he will back it up with meaningful actions and he himself, his nature and character will testify to his words that it is what it is! 

No mincing words (source)
Like I’ll always say, there are different types of men out there, there are boys who just want to play and have fun. And there are men who know what they want and go for it. Someone always says to me that when a man knows what he wants, he will go for it, stop at nothing to get it and give all to have it. True. 

Simply put, if he’s into you just as a friend, he will relate with you on a friendship basis. Sometimes, this can be quite confusing, especially if he’s the type that is seen to be nice and caring, you get along with him and to make matters worse, he’s your type! You may misinterpret his friendliness for a genuine relationship interest which could potentially ruin the friendship you have itself when you find out that he’s just not that into you!
...................Lightchild


You can follow Lightchild on Twitter @light_child , Instagram @lightchildfamily and Facebook - LightChildFamily

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Like I said earlier on, I loved reading this post and I found myself nodding, thinking about personal experiences (and cringing!), as well as understanding and absorbing the fact that if I have to ask the question "Is he into me into me" then there's already a 99.9% chance that he isn't. When a man/woman wants to be with you, he/she would and should not leave you doubting or second-guessing what they want. 
You're not a private investigator / mind reader..... and more importantly, you're worth more than that! If they want you in their lives, let them show you (and everyone else) that they do.


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