Posts Tagged ‘Syria’

Yes!! One male, one female! That’s what I’m trying to achieve this year with the #31Days31Writers series… Love it! The different voices, the diversity in our experiences, I love it! Again I’m humbled when people I don’t know/don’t really know reach out to offer entries for this series… Thank you for considering my blog worthy of your time, effort, and experiences!

Say hello to our entry for today, Oladayo!

2015. Oh 2015, you gave me quite a scare at some point but trust God to make everything beautiful in His time.Yes!

My name is Oladayo and 2015 has been the year. Started routinely, life going as usual, then came the bump in the road. However, it only helped me find myself in God and made me a better, stronger man. And like any good movie, the end of the year is much better. All bumps were navigated and multiple lessons were learned. Will share a few:

I have learned to lean totally on God and avoid self-help especially when He’s promised to sort me out. You can never underestimate the leading of God in life.

I learned how to overcome my fears and reduce my tendency to worry. If I really can’t help it, why worry? Better to commit to God and wait on Him to show up.

I have learned the importance of building one’s faith in advance so that when great faith is needed, it can be tapped into. I have learned the power of organic growth and the futility of comparing oneself with others. Trust me, we all have our challenges. Grow at your pace and run your own race. There is space for us all to thrive.

I have many things to be thankful for:

1. My wife – my rock, the soft-spoken, gentle tower of strength beside me.

2. Friends who show up for me, giving what I ask for without asking why I need. Nothing is too much to ask friends. I needed a loan for a project and my bank took months to say no. It took my friend less than a day to give the funds needed when I asked.

3. Many minute, day-to-day blessings that tally up to very big miracles. I ventured into projects that normally would look scary and I am coming out unscathed through God’s Grace.

4. Nigeria – thankful that we still have a country. With all its flaws, we are still standing. The turn of the year brought a lot of fear and even now when I see Syria, I am thankful for the relative peace we enjoy in Nigeria

5. Safe travels – been another intense travel year, rate of over 1 flight a week. I see all the issues in aviation worldwide and I can’t but be thankful for safe and eventless flights.

All in all, I am looking forward to 2016 with the assurance that it’s going to be a much better year on all fronts. I believe I will be reaching new frontiers, all by God’s Grace.

Thank you Oladayo! Here’s a big amen to all your prayers, for you and your family, and all the readers on this blog! Someone said recently on Twitter that beneath all the smart quips and laughs on Twitter, some of us struggled this year, and she prayed that the joys of 2016 would make us forget everything that hurt/stung. 

Come back tomorrow everyone!

So, in January, I was selected as one of 70 young people from America, Asia, and Africa to attend a 4-day conference organized by Hope XXL at The Hague, The Netherlands.

One word? Incredible! Meeting people from countries I’d only ever heard of, learning bits about diverse cultures, listening to our keynote speakers, deliberating on articles for the Liemer’s List (please allow Google the option of your friendship) was just incredible. I feel so blessed!

There are two keynote speeches I really enjoyed, and I made a few notes. Wanna see?

Leo Bormans wrote ‘The world’s book of happiness’ and he told us about the two kinds of people, ‘green buttons and red buttons’.

Green button Red button
Talk about ‘us’ Talk about ‘me’
Talk and seek ‘solutions’ Talk and see ‘problems’
Look to the ‘future’ Look to the ‘past’

Trust and equality are major determinants of how happy a country is. Denmark, Norway, The Netherlands lead on the happiness index, even though they are not the richest countries. Why?

Happiness can be summarized in two words – other people. (Here he asked us to think about the four happiest moments in our lives and then crossed off money, surprises, other people, and family as the thing behind our happiness).

Here are a few more thoughts on why happiness ranks higher than money and accomplishments

  • The best-selling meal on earth is McDonald’s Happy Meal
  • Nike, Danone, and Coca Cola’s  slogans play on a smile. Wristwatches  always appear in ads set to 10 past 2pm – that’s a smile. Would you buy a ‘frowning’ watch? (To be honest I’ve made it a point of duty to take a closer look at adverts from now on!)
  • Coca Cola has moved from ‘Enjoy’ to ‘Open happiness’, even Lipton Iced Tea has become ‘drink positive’. Like there’s any way to drink negative. 

He also talked about ‘realistic hope’ which is hinged on these three:

Survival – resilience

Attachment – trust

Mastery – goals

He also took time explain the meaning of ‘Namaste’ to us. It means three things: I see you, I recognize something positive in you, and I bow to it.

And then he wrapped with, “To a man with a hammer, everything is a nail. To a man with a telescope, everything presents an opportunity to be viewed from different angles. I wish you a telescopic life!”

For more from Leo Bormans, visit www.worldbookofhappiness.com and/or www.leobormans.be

Another session that really spoke to me was the one on chemical weapons presented by Mr. Michael Luhan, head of communication at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons. They received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2013 for their extensive efforts to eliminate chemical weapons.

OPCW was founded in 1997 and so far, 109 countries have signed up to the OPCW, and there are 8 countries declared/gave up their stash of chemical weapons. And so, far, there haven’t been any ‘challenge inspections’ – where the OPCW doesn’t believe a country has surrendered all they’ve got, and decides to challenge their declaration.

Really interesting to hear of the devastation chemical weapons cause, and more importantly, to learn of the extent of brilliance and wickedness the human mind is capable of.

We spent the rest of the day identifying the countries we came from – check out the sexiest country of them at the top – Nigeria!!

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Right at the top baby!!

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I think this group was classed as the people from AAA but living in Europe…

 

Whoop!

Then we went to dinner, and then it was off to our accommodation, Hotel Studio, and bedtime! The evening and the morning, the first day!

 

 

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