Essays, poems and Stories of an African-American

Friday, 2 August 2013

Like we cannot do without the apps in our mobile units so should our values be in our individual lives.

Saudi, Mike and Alex are preachers of the Bible and talk about the love of God and Jesus Christ in such a way one is left thinking they met God or Jesus from the day they were born.
‘Take up Jesus as your personal savior’ says Alex a 19 year old High School student. ‘Jesus loves you’ adds Saudi a 20 year old lad from Virginia. It appears they rehearsed their parts.  Hands in pockets, they continue talking about how Jesus loves me after I asked how that was possible. ‘He loves us so much He gave His Son to atone our sins.’ Now that got my little theology alerts going! ‘Jesus loves me so much He gave up His son to atone for my sins?’ I asked incredulously. Alex did not see the reason for my question and I corrected him. I even threw in a quote. John 3:16. Alex soon realized his mix up. Saudi took over. ‘We have a card here, come to Grafton and pray with us’ he invited. ‘Grafton is like 3 train stops away.’ I replied. ‘Oh, yes, but many people from Grafton come to Worcester every day’ opined Alex. Meaning it would be easier for me. Saudi later told me I should call the number on the card and a van would come, take me to Grafton for prayers and back to Worcester.

‘Why do you preach Jesus and not love?’ I asked. ‘You came here after you talked to those other people on that other bench and you have not even greeted me, but you straight away said: “Jesus loves you”’ I challenged Alex. I gave my name and asked theirs too. I asked them where they came from and that is how I got to know they were from a Pentecostal Church in Grafton run by Pastor Mike who is the uncle to Saudi and a benefactor to Alex. Saudi’s family is from Virginia and he had come to visit the uncle and not one to sit at home doing nothing, he escorted uncle Mike on a Worcester bound evangelization drive. That created an air of confidence on all our part and the hands were out of the pockets by now. There was dignity between all of us and we all assumed a respectful stance. Alex and Saudi sat next to me and we continued to converse. I told them of when I used to care for bed-ridden persons who were left for dead but nursed them back to life. I told them then I was doing more of Jesus’ work than preaching of love. We agreed that in USA we need more actions of love than mere words. That way Jesus is more manifest in our midst. Alex shared his experience of helping a near drug addict young person get back to a drug-free life. This was after I shared with them on how I helped 3 homeless persons who used to sleep on the park benches to access food, clothes and a warm place. I encouraged them to do more acts of love but also preach the word. Before we all went our separate ways we listed and compared apps in our mobile units and values that humans needed to live as one, happily and fruitfully.

Apps, circuitry and digital ware are to computers and mobile appliances what values are to humans. The ability for humans to interact, communicate, judge, make improvements on life and record experiences in turn depends on several values. Values are those innate non-tangible treasures such as:  livableness, respect, empowering, forgiving, regard, responsibility, dependability, patience, discretion, fair conduct, mindfulness, good-will, obedience, tolerance, dutifulness, consistency, restorer and uphold dignity.

This improves on one’s utility, utilitarian-ship, function, functionality and self-discovery. In knowing these inherent values we are forced to admire the fact that they actually lie in other people too. That should be the reason why all humans should be of good-will to each other. This is what helps us overcome challenges and mishaps. In preaching the word of GOD we all need to also practice acts of love. Acts of love spring from our innate values.

Monday, 29 July 2013

The axe entered the forest, the trees said as one: "look the handle is one of us." YORUBA SAYING

This week two incidents reminded me so much of life, the friends we make, the friends we keep, the steps we take, the mistakes we did, the look into the past and the regrets, fondness in that cup. However much we dwell on our past, it is imperative we use far more energy to project ourselves into the future. This is the essence of purpose. To live fruitfully.

A friend shared with me this; 'if you grow wiser than the the smaller group or circle of friends it is better to cast wider and increase on the friends' network. More than one friend is like a singing quartet where there is a tenor, soprano, alto and bass.' I thought about this for a long time.

Imagine a social network where people ask to be your friends and they make up the bulk of connections. One can get in touch with them or they too can get in touch or be in touch using various applications on this social network. These are virtual relationships. They are part of one's sense of direction, bonding, duty, loyalty and status. No doubt in such an arrangement there are those who are popular and those who are not. These e-relationships (i-relations) can get abusive, but still people hang in there for fear of losing these 'friends.' It is not easy to lose a friend. But, if one is abusive and uses very scandalizing language it is better to leave or opt out. There are very many reasons why humans get social or get into relations. The aspect of 'being one of us' that connects you to a particular social network can manifest in many ways: the things you aspire to or the fact that you are able to make more friends from all over the world. It is like the trees inviting the axe in their midst because of the wooden handle. When it gets abusive it is similar to the time when the axe is used to cut those very trees. Waiting long to go out of an abusive relationship is a similar case of when the axe is used to cut the trees! Waiting too long hurts. Be wise, get out. 

These can be some situations: If the other person uses abusive; scandalous or disparaging words that are not called for; use of expletives in a way that belittles you; use of any slurs with the intention of painting you as bad; stalks you by barraging you with texts or unsolicited messages even after being warned not to and;using intimidating language towards you.

There are cues in life that enable us to gauge the trend of our relationships. Use these as early warning signals. Use them to warn you and to help you contribute to building the relationship or learning what your other people want and are comfortable with.

Meanwhile build a base for yourself so that when you do need time to yourself you know how to use it well in constructive and productive ways. This is a good skill; to use time and resources around effectively to improve on yourself and others. Be comfortable with yourself and only then will you be comfortable with others. We can only be ready for the future when we set ourselves ready. The future is based on our readiness. The Irish have a saying: 'the future is not set, there is no fate but what we make for ourselves.' FABER EST SUAE QUISQUE FORTUNAE.