The lessons from my experience at the NYSC camp continue…
Lesson 9: Don’t let your past hold you back from your glorious future: I must begin this by sharing a personal testimony. While I was an undergraduate, I played for the soccer team in my department. There was a particular match that we were awarded a penalty. I should state here that this was 5 years ago. I decided to take the spot kicks, as I felt quite sure that I was going to score it. But I was wrong, the shot was too weak, the keeper punched it away and I was unable to score the rebound. This was a pain to the team, because we needed the vital win, I don’t think we did. Right after then I was given the tag of someone who couldn’t play penalties. And I never did again till I graduated. It’s quite sad right? Yes. But that’s how life is, not everyone will see you fail and believe in you still. Now on camp I was on the soccer team, and as God we have it we entered in to penalty kicks because we had no winner at that point. It was time for the players to signal if they wanted to play. I thought about myself, the plague of my past in this area, my last miss, and how it would be if I missed like I did the last time. I had such a huge mountain in my face. Running away would have been easy, but I decided to face my mountain. I signaled that I was going to take one of the 5 penalty kicks. And my turn came, with all the hope I had, I hit the ball, and I watched as it soared……… perfectly into the post. It was excellently taken; the goal keeper went the wrong way! I almost couldn’t believe it. Many people came to commend me, but they didn’t know that I just overcame my mountain. It’s the same with many of us today, because of our past, we can’t seem to have the strength to face the future. We have the ‘what if’ questions ringing in our heads. But like me, we can turn our failure story around into a testimony. If others give up on you, never give up on yourself. It may be bad when you fail, but it is far worse to think that you are a failure. Get up today and rise up to that challenge. I am sure you have it in you to be victorious, and so you’ll be!
Lesson 10: Never ever forget God: The worst thing we could do for ourselves is pretend, and live a life that isn’t real. The reason why the world is still the way it is today is because the church is full of hypocrites. It is full of people who claim to be what they are not. It’s amazing to see how quickly people are willing to compromise, and drop their God for other things like desires, lusts, friends, and fun. From what I saw, people forgot God and all Jesus did on the cross for them, went back into sin. I am talking of a true life experience here. How quick are you to forget God? Are you just a seasonal Christian? Or you are willing to stick with God no matter how much. God has never forgotten you and he doesn’t plan to, he has the resources to keep your head up, high above the water. You need him, so be proud always to make others know you belong to him. Don’t live a fake life, live it for God.
Lesson 11: Be quick to help: How does being kind to people you don’t know sound? Strange! Who is willing to stick out a helping hand to a person he hardly knows? We must live with the mentality that people need us. We are the solution to people’s problems. We don’t do good because we want to be commended or because we want something back, we do good because it is good to do good. I was privileged to help others in their down times. Surprisingly, I never lacked once. Holding back when you can help won’t help you grow bigger, but giving is the only way to a better living.
Lesson 12: Stay away from alcohol: Now I saw the full effect of alcohol on people in camp. So I got a firsthand experience of the power on others, though I don’t drink. I realized that most people that drink lack fulfillment, acceptance, and many suffer from peer pressure or low self-esteem. Why get high, when you’ll get lower and more shameful than before you got high on alcohol. I saw people disgrace themselves; lose respect, value and worth due to drunkenness. I clearly could see why the Bible says drunkards won’t make it to heaven. God only wants us to be under one influence, the influence of the Holy Spirit. When alcohol is the influence, then the influence of who can lead and guide isn’t there anymore because one has lost total use of reasoning and sense. One cannot do anything reasonable and worthy of praise while drunk, it’s why drinking and driving is an offense. The good thing is Jesus is ready to save any drunkard or anyone with addictions. He saves daily and will keep saving. If you need his help then call unto him. But do your best to stay away from the bottle.
Lesson 13: Listen to music that will make you better, and would make you long for God: I am not a believer in secular songs, songs that worship the hips, curves and lips of women, sex, weed, the devil or money. I believe in songs that worship God, sing about his goodness, teach me to become better, inspire me for my tomorrow, and let me reach out to know God more. Ungodly music can wreck serious havoc. And from what I know and have seen, music well known is difficult to erase or delete. As long as it is played, your memory simply releases the lyrics you once knew. I can’t say I haven’t heard some of the recent ungodly songs, because they are played everywhere. But I got to see a full dose of the power when the youths started to dance and follow the songs one after the other. I realized that these songs had eaten up their beings. You can’t store some of those songs inside you, and you’ll look at a woman as God’s vessel and not a sex giver. The simple point is listening to the right kind of songs. I have been there too, I know how binding those devilish songs could be.. But if God freed me, I know he can free you too. Delete those bad songs and take the right godly, inspiring songs today.
Lesson 14: Respect everyone: Can you learn from someone you are younger than? Can you speak well to someone not in your class or isn’t your type? Do you look down on people easily? Well I don’t know what your responses are, but an important thing you must learn is to respect everyone. No matter from what walk of life they may be from, accord them the respect. As it is popularly said, respect is reciprocal, when you give respect, you get respect in return. And to our respect addicts, you don’t demand for respect, you earn it. Once you start speaking to someone to respect you because of your age means that you haven’t shown maturity at your age to demand enough respect. Accord everyone the respect that is due them and your only direction is up!
Lesson 15: Recreate your world: Only a few people knew who I was when I stepped into the camp. I could be anything I wanted to be, bad or good, regardless of my past. It came to me that recreating my world was possible if I really wanted to change it. I didn’t change who I was because I am happy to be who I am. This is for you if you think you are stuck in a rut. You can start over; you can recreate your life for better. Mistakes are permitted, but you can start to do right again. If a building is swaying with the wind, then the foundations should be checked. It’s not bad to start from the foundation up if the foundations will be put right this time. Recreate your life one step at a time. Others may laugh, mock and jeer at you, but once you get it right, they’ll ask you to help them. I believe God today, that he will make grace available to recreate your world. Amen!
These are a few lessons I learnt from camp, in just 3 weeks. There is a lot more, because we learn every day. I hope these practical lessons will help you the way they have helped me. Value has been added once again on the Victory Path today, keep being victorious!
Remember, life is a school the more you live, the more you learn. Keep living, keep learning and be the best you can be anywhere you find yourself.
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