Wednesday, 19 December 2012

The Menace Called New Year Resolutions

It’s that time of the year when friends and family look through their life and because they regret one or more of the steps they took during the course of the year, they draw up a list of things they would like to change or implement in the new year under the heading “My New Year Resolutions”. Let me start by plainly declaring that I’m not criticizing those that make New Year Resolutions, rather, it is the motive behind it and the captive life it offers it’s victims that I speak against. More often than not, it is the heart behind such resolutions that I have issues with.
Before you make that New Year Resolution, have you stopped to think about what facilitated such erroneous move you made in the concluding year? Do you really think it was because you never really included it as a resolution the previous year that brought about such error? Havent you heard “…it is not of him that willeth nor of him that runneth, but of the Lord that showeth mercy…?”, “…not by power, not be might, but by my Spirit saith the Lord…?”, these should tell you that your will-power alone cannot successfully guarantee adherence to a decision made especially if it is for the progress of a life. Your will-power is not enough to change a life for the better.
Many have been held captive by the menace called New Year Resolution. Imagine one with a resolution to make up to 2000friends on Facebook and over a thousand followers on Twitter. And I ask myself, to what end is this kind of New Year Resolution?
More often than not, our New Year Resolutions are fuelled by the desire to meet up to a standard, be like a friend/colleague of ours or most importantly, acquire possessions for our own interests.
If at all you have to make New Year Resolutions, let them be credible and then commit it into the hands of the Lord and ask for Grace to successfully accomplish them.
For me, I dont do New Year Resolutions. I just commit my ways and life into the hands of the Creator daily, I live by His percepts, principles and instructions...and I can tell you it is the sweetest thing you can ever do...the loveliest decision you can ever make.

Before you send the next BC

BC is one menace every Blackberry user like me detest, yet some users cant just have enough of it. Maybe I should start by making everyone understand what a BC is. Well, it’s short for Broad Cast and it is an unrestricted message/information sent in bulk to more than one of your contacts per time. Originally, it used to be in form of bulk e-mails and sent on unique days (01/01/01, 02/02/02, …, 12/12/12), special celebrations (New Month, New Week, New Year, Christmas, Easter, etc) and important occasions (Graduation, Weddings, Birthdays), but these days, it has become rampant and unpredictable that we get it every other day for every other reason. BCs occur on mobile (as bulk SMS), Whatsapp, and most annoyingly on BBm.
I’m sure the original intent of BCs was to share important and valid information with your contacts (e.g. your forthcoming wedding ceremony, birthday party, etc), but as we all know, things are abused in this part of the world. People now send BCs for the wrongest reasons at the oddest of times. It has gotten so bad that people now forward BCs directly without stopping to think thoroughly on the content of the message. As I write this piece, one just came in claiming “There has been an accident by a bus going from Sapele to Warri, having all passengers dead, please broadcast till it gets to their family members”. I don’t mean to be rude and callous, but for all I care, it aint my business. While I sympathize with the family of the deceased, surely they wont hear the bad news from me. The transport company is in charge of notifying next of kins…that’s why every traveler registers at bus-parks before take-off, that much, I know. Different BCs everyday, “I am Jesus…, send it to 12 people and watch what happens in 12 minutes…”, “…Adenuga’s Mum is celebrating 80years, send to 25 contacts and get 1000 recharge card free…”, “A telecommunication company is celebrating 10years of impact in Nigeria, send to 20 contacts and get 750naira recharge card…”, etc.
Before you start pointing accusing fingers, do you know our Network Providers also send us BCs? Which makes me wonder if it was stated in their terms and conditions of service (You can refer to my Note on Terms and Conditions Apply for reference). These days, it has become so rampant that I feel like smashing my phones anytime the BCs come in, and I wonder if they send same to the likes of the Otedolas, Dangotes, Momodus, etc on promos and what have you.
Sincerely, I find it hard differentiating amongst a learned individual, a learner, an illiterate and a stark illiterate. Someone said our problem in this part of the world is that we don’t think. I definitely agree with such claim. Please, please and please before you send the next BC, THINK…for heaven’s sake, just give it a thought…perhaps for two minutes, the effect the BC you are about sending will have. If it is a joke you are sending, have you considered the mood of the recipient? For heaven’s sake, not everyone enjoys a joke especially at odd times.
Well, if you care to know, I delete BCs as soon as they come in, I don’t even read them. Be it on mobile, Whatsapp, BBm, or whatever platform, I just delete them without giving it a thought. Imagine a graduate, someone who passed through the 4walls of a University sending BCs about Whatsapp or BBm shutting down because they have reached a limit and then the solution to that problem is that you must send a BC to all your contacts. How can you see such and fall for it by sending it to all your contacts? Are you a LEARNER? Was it in the terms and conditions that we must help them send BCs? Who told you they don’t have a monitor that observes both active and dormant accounts? Please wake up and stop disgracing your generation. Prove to the world that you are a learned person.
Think! Think!! Think!!! Don’t just interrupt people’s daily lives by sending them irrelevant messages. If you have an announcement, contact the radio house or TV station closest to you, call a Press conference and make your announcement. If there has been an accident, dial 911 or call the nearest hospital. If there is a robbery going on, call the nearest Police Station…that is how to be of help and not spreading bad news…especially one that you have not confirmed?
The energy and time you expend sending BCs can be channeled into imparting lives positively with words of grace. Use the resources at your disposal for more productive things than being a nuisance. Imagine someone you haven’t heard from for over a month and the next beep you get is a BC! Not even a good morning, good afternoon or good day as the case may be.
I can bet it with you, someone, somewhere is composing another BC and I can imagine the wry smile on his/her face when he/she begins to trend. Wake up today, distinguish yourself, don’t be a learner, don’t be an illiterate, say no to unreasonable BCs.
Before you send the next BC, please think about the content, or just be like me and desist from sending such. Friends, the message is simple and straight-forward, we shouldn’t be found doing some things as learned individuals. Say no to BCs today!

Terms and Conditions Apply

Every product from every manufacturer has terms and conditions for its usage. Both Hardware, Software and Firmware products have terms and conditions, but in this part of the world, nah, we dont have time for that. Ask yourself before we proceed further, have I ever COMPLETELY read the terms and conditions of a product BEFORE using the product? Little wonder, we have been cheated severally and we do not know it. Virtually all modern day youth crave for the use of sophisticated gadgets like iPads, iPhones, Blackberries, and the crave is so intense that upon purchase of the utility, we start using it immediately without even going through it's terms and conditions of use. Well, maybe some people do actually read these terms and conditions of hardware products, just maybe. I can say that 99% of software and firmware users do not read through the terms and conditions of these utilities before installation and usage, especially considering the fact that if you do not agree to it, the software cannot proceed to full installation.
Truth be told, some of these terms and conditions are always too lengthy and may take hours to completely go through them, but isn't it worth the time? If I'm so desperate to use a software, shouldn't I be patient enough to go through the rules and regulations of it's use?
I saw an inscription on a platform that reads “...if you think you are bored, just remember that someone somewhere is sitting at a desk, typing the Terms and Conditions of a utility...”. Really, this is an intriguing inscription that got me thinking that in this part of the world, we see Terms and Conditions as useless as the last four letters of the word Queue. If not for anything but to appreciate the efforts of the person that typed the write-up, please let's always go through the Terms and Conditions of products before installation.
In a bid to force people to read through them, manufacturers have placed the “I Agree” or “Disagree” button at the base of the write-up, but we all know how we circumvent that, we just scroll to the base of the write-up and click our desired choice.
Enough said already in generalization, let's come home and to our very own country, Nigeria; let's start with the telecommunications industry, how many of us read through the terms and conditions of the particular telecommunication service provider before we started using their SIM? Was it in the Terms and Conditions that they will keep sending us irrelevant text broadcast messages or even calling us with promos, etc? How many of us read through the terms and conditions for Blackberry Internet Service of our telecoms service provider before subscribing? Chances are 0%.
Truth is, in this part of the world, we suffer in silence not primarily due to ignorance, but due to foolhardiness. We take a lot of important things for granted and expend so much energy on irrelevant matters. In a situation whereby you didnt even go through the terms and conditions of service, how do you even know your right from wrong? Do you know for every service you paid for, you deserve your money's worth? You do BIS subscription for 30days and you were only able to use it for 20days, the remaining days of the subscription went to network failure from service providers, and then you come on Facebook, Twitter, 2go, etc and start cursing the network providers, swearing under your breathe. My dear, nothing evil will happen to them, infact you will be surprised they'll keep making net-breaking profits while you sit there complaining and languishing in agony.
Truth is you need to wake up and learn your rights. You're going to bed in the night with an account balance of N100.25 and then you wake up and find a balance of N100.00 (a ghost has made midnight call abi?) and then you laugh it off cursing them and their company...**yimu**...nothing will happen to them, absolutely nothing. Until you wake up and stand for your right, they'll keep exploiting us and we just die in silence cursing them imaginarily.
Enough said about telecommunications company, let's take a look at banks and insurance companies. Infact, those ones ehn, their mode of operation/Terms and Conditions are not even open to the public. They just tell you the little you need to know and then you register with them...and the exploitation begins. Oftentimes, I receive alert from my bank of a CR of N52.75 and a few days later, a DR of N73.82. I ask myself how these calculations are done an what facilitated such CR and DRs. But guess what? Anytime I visit the bank, it's either I forget to ask or I'm too timid to ask. The Pension Fund companies is another story entirely. They only tip you on the little you need to know and convince you to register. Of recent, I was told that the pension fund company I signed up with wont eventually give you your money outrightly, even at the specified age limit. Only a fraction will be paid and worst of all, in installments again, I felt like crying.
Friend, before you take that next step in signing up and registering with a company, thoroughly go through the Terms and Conditions and be sure you are okay with it, else dont sign up with them.
If we dont start doing this, then I guess it's Aluta Continua!

INSTRUCTIONS: They are thy Life!

If ever you have moved from a level of your life to another, then you must have successfully completed a phase, written an examination and come out successful. Which makes me presume that as an academia, you must have come across something of this Nature:
SECTION A: Answer ALL the Ten questions.
SECTION B: Answer questions 1, 2 and any one of 3, 4 and 5.
Imagine two student, a brilliant and an average one. Average student follows the instruction to the letter while brilliant student shows skill and confidence and answers just two questions in section A and ALL the questions in section B. which of them do you think will score the highest? Your guess is as good as mine!
As it is with the scenario painted above, instructions are a vital part of our life and existence without which life will be meaningless and unbearable. Even the holy scriptures acknowledges the fact that Instructions are very necessary for a fulfilled life. Prov. 4:13.
The truth is, for every phase of your life, there are specific instructions to be considered and strictly adhered to...that is what guarantees a colorful destiny. When the instructions in a phase are not adhered to, and by chance you move on from that phase, then there is a dent already in the road to fulfillment of destiny.
Now, it is a different thing to be aware of the instructions and another thing to deliberately ignore them. Ignorance though is not an excuse in the court of law...therefore ignorance cannot be feigned as to the awareness of instructions.
Are you still worried about the source/location of the instructions? Well, dont look too far, the instructions manual is ever with you, the Bible. Whenever products are released into the market, the manufacturer releases with it the manual/instructions for operation. So also is the life we live, the Creator himself has created us and sent us into the world, but not without a manual/instruction guide for operation. Everything the Lord does is orderly and therefore, every phase you will ever be has specific instructions and guidelines to follow for triumph in that phase.
The instructors manual is made up of 25% principles and 75% instructions as highlighted in II Tim. 3:16 (Doctrines – Principles; Reproof, Correction & Instructions – Instructions).
If therefore, three-quarters of the manual is filled with instructions, then it is advisable to locate the specific instruction for your life at a point/phase, utilize it and see the dramatic turnaround in your life.
During the time I was seeking admission, frustration nearly set in until instructions came from His word (the manual) and through someone's testimony. The person went through the same predicament and was victorious through the application of principles and instructions...he fed himself daily with scriptures from Psalms 102:13 and Jeremiah 29:11 and then added to that, he started rearing a monthly altar of sacrifice tagged “Admissions Offering”. I immediately tapped into the testimony and applied the same instructions and principles. That same year, I secured my admission. This brings me to the conclusion that certain phases of life may actually require the same instructions to conquer but more often than not, you may need to locate your own specific instructions to become victorious in that phase.
As painted in the testimony above, instructions are not limited to the manual alone, as with the Admission Offering, there are times when products malfunction, they are taken straight to the manufacturer for specific instruction and maintenance operation, so it is with life issues, there are certain instructions you dont get in the manual, you have to take the situation to the manufacturer and hear directly from Him. Yeah, that's the place of the HolySpirit. He instructs, guides, teaches as illustrated in John 14:26. There are instructions you hear directly from Him concerning certain issues at certain crossroads of life.
Ignorance is not an excuse else you keep languishing in your problem and remain at the spot or phase for a long time.
Your heart must be receptive enough to accept the instructions else you remain in that phase for a long time.
Doing it as instructed is also very vital in a successful attempt. No matter how long you have been walking on a wrong path, it never leads to a right destination until you retrace your step and start walking on the right and instructed route.
Friends, for a colorful life and a glorious destiny, the importance of instructions cannot be over-emphasized. I therefore admonish you to guard your heart with all diligence, accept instruction, utilize them as instructed, and then a colorful flight is guaranteed. See you all at the topmost top.