If you haven’t watched or heard about Nigeria’s first lady Dame Patience Jonathan’s recent speech, then you are probably just being born, arrived from another planet, or you just arrived from the village. You can watch the video here.. I do not know where this speech ranks on the platform of best speeches ever delivered. One thing I know is, it ranks nothing close to the speeches of Martin Luther King Jnr, Nelson Mandela, or Barack Obama’s speeches that move one to tears and belief. Although the First Lady cried during her speech, no one else seemed to connect with those tears or cry with her.. Lol. That the First Lady of a country struggled to speak English correctly in front of the TV cameras for just a few minutes makes us know that what we saw was just a tip of the iceberg. People living with her would know the absolute truth about her. She has proven these thoughts right with other popular speeches full of grammatical errors in times past that can be found all over the internet. Her recent and popular ‘All the bloods that they are shearing (shedding), Na only you waka come? Chai chai chai, There is God o!’ speech only came as comic relief in a very unstable and insecure period after the kidnapping of about 276 girls in Nigeria. As a matter of fact T-shirts, videos and songs have been released to promote the “depth” of the speech, tweets and retweets said a lot on twitter concerning it. That was the kind of address Nigeria got from the First Lady. One thing I still don’t seem to understand is why she cannot stick to written addresses and scripts. Well, after we have a good laugh and point fingers, we mustn’t run off and live our lives. We must do something that would help us, learn lessons from the First Lady. I’ll be mentioning a few, hoping that you’ll add more, so we can learn as much as we can.
Lessons From Patience Jonathan and her speeches
1) What you say reveals who you are. The content of what you say depicts what you carry. Like a bottle can only pour out what it contains, a man speaks what he is full of. This is either good or bad. Your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, and your actions shape your character.
“For as a man thinks in his heart, so is he” Proverbs 23:7a
2) Sometimes silence is a saver. It is worse to speak and reveal one’s folly than to be quiet and not show your true folly. As a matter of fact, a quiet fool is regarded as a wise man simply because he has not spoken to prove otherwise.
“A fool utters all his mind: but a wise man keeps it in till afterwards” Proverbs 29:11
3) Marriage does not always make you better. Many people have the ideology that when they get married, it’ll will solve all their problems, it’s very wrong. In fact marriage reveals who you truly are. You are still very single in marriage, because no one can help you improve on yourself but you. The First Lady’s diction didn’t magically become right after she got married. If she doesn’t work on it, it may remain like that always.
“Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies” Proverbs 31:10 – Here we notice that its not marriage that makes the woman virtuous, the woman is virtuous on her own.
4) Don’t be ashamed to admit weakness. Admitting your weakness today will stop you from being shamed tomorrow. Deal with your weakness today in private or it would shame you tomorrow in public.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him! James 1:5
5) Be open to receive help. Many people are happy with their ignorance and folly, regardless of proofs that show that they are on a wrong path, hold on to a wrong belief, or are going to fail. They are defiant and stay comfortable till in their comfort, they become obsolete.
“Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that you may be wise in thy latter end” Proverbs 19:20
6) When everyone begins to point at you, you need to take a good look at yourself. This is not encouraging you to believe every single thing you hear about you, but when you begin to hear different people say one thing over and over and over again about you, then you need to assess and check yourself so that you can adjust and get better in that area. This reminds me of a story I heard of a farmer whose grand children smeared cows poo on his beard and ran away. When the man woke up, he said “this room smells of poo”, he moved to another room and said “this room smells of poo too.” He then ran outside, hoping for fresh air, upon not meeting it, he shouted “The whole world smells of poo.” Many times in life, the problem doesn’t lie with others, it lies with us.
“Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is safety” Proverbs 11:14
7) People believe whatever you show to them. You must learn to communicate who you truly are so that people don’t have the wrong idea of you. They say a first impression is difficult to change. It may be hard to believe that the tears of the First Lady were real, it may be harder to believe that she probably is a kind hearted person. Who knows? Give people the right perception of who you are.
“The woman said unto him, Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet” John 4:19
8) Don’t stop doing what you are meant to because of challenges. Even with the First Lady’s history of grammatical blunders, she still keeps coming out to speak and do her job. I must admit that this is commendable, it takes courage to keep standing for what one believes in. Don’t stop doing what is right because of challenges along the way. 0
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you”
9) Don’t judge others, another man’s strength could be your weakness. Many people have stage fright, and fear speaking in public more than death. Many people have a very good diction and can’t speak in public, meanwhile someone like our First lady can speak in public but hasn’t just learnt how to express herself effectively. A saying goes ‘The person that has a head doesn’t have a crown, and the person that has a crown doesn’t have a head.’ This simply signifies that someone may have something you don’t have and vice versa. To judge another person, you must believe you are better than the person in that area. Let’s agree that we all need help.
“Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister” Romans 14:13
10) Learn to love anyway! Many people want conditional love, they want people to know and love only their perfections and not their imperfections. “We come to love not by finding a perfect person, but by learning to see an imperfect person perfectly” a wise person said. This is the kind of view we must take when it comes to love, learn to love both the perfection and imperfection, the strength and the weaknesses, love totally. Regardless of what we say or think about the first lady, she is a wife, she is in charge, and she is loved. With her weaknesses she still is a wife and first lady any way. We should have some people come out and say “Dear first lady, your style of speaking, choice of words, diction and grammar is nothing short of unique. You have broken records and created new ones, for this we love you!”
“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins” 1 Peter 4:8
These are a few lessons that come to mind, when I try to learn from our First Lady. What are your thoughts? Any lessons to add? Commenting just takes a few seconds. So please comment and share this post. Thanks.