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I have been thinking a lot about how more challenging it is to raise a Christian child in this day and age. It feels like it was a lot easier for our parents to achieve this in their era. Those of us born in the 70s and 80s, know for a fact that the benchmark for moral standards has shifted adversely. This is now an age where things like nakedness, exposure, foul language and even strong vices are seen as badges. If you think this is a lie, watch the television. No longer do those images and ideologies sting our senses or cause us to squirm.   I agree that technology and so called enlightenment have been the making of the modern world. However the trade off has been the shift in what we all consider good and bad. For example I remember getting told off at work place because I included “In God I trust” in my email signature. I get the evils when I add “By God’s grace within a statement by people who constantly fill the air waves with swearing, F’s and Puffs and all what not! Rather than shrink away, I managed to tell them that I would only stop talking about God if they also stopped swearing! ” Stop swearing please”,  I said But they laughed at me and said I was just being holy holy. How on earth can saying by God’s grace be a crime while saying fucking, bullshit and bloody hell are applauded!   Yeah, that’s the world we live in today. Sadly, it is the one we have to raise our children in. I dare say that some sermons appear over tailored for political correctness. Many preachers no longer want to be astute with their approach to the truth. Instead, they appear to pet the issue and be at the mercy of these ideologies. The good news is that, we can make a difference. We can help our children. Prayer as always is the key. The key to establishing a solid relationship with God lies in the strength of one’s prayer life. Prayers need not be long enough to distract from the purpose of building and establishing this ecclesiastical rapport. Prayer needs to be just enough to to connect with God and stay connected.   So what length of prayer is acceptable? Any! Yes …. So long prayers, short prayers, singing, quiet prayers and not so loud ones will do. The bible reassures us that God hears our thoughts (Psalm 139:23), Hannah’s prayer was silent in her heart and God heard her (1 Samuel 1:10,13),   Prayer does not need to be lengthy. Remember Jesus’ admonition for us to pray with few words and not ramble on (Matthew 6:7). We should also pray without ceasing. Meaning that we should cultivate a habit of prayer so that we are constantly in union with God in our hearts at all times.   Let’s say you an I understand all these concepts, how do we teach this to our little children. Children who would much rather play games, fiddle about with gadgets and have what appear to be the shortest attention spans since the inception of time. They are having more fun than all the children born in all the past eras joined together! It is certainly a huge challenge for the modern parent. My advice would be Keep prayers short. So that they will be interested in praying with you next time. There was nothing more annoying than my mum’s long, slow prayers when I was young. I heard myself say “Our father who at in heaven….. and mean it but by the time we were on the fourth psalm, all I wanted to do was sleep. Make prayers enjoyable. You can ask your child to add their own words. Praise every effort they make. Tell them you like how they pray. You like the way they sound. This will encourage them to pray and build their confidence Pray with your child. This gives you the opportunity to model prayer to your child. Choose simple words and avoid repetition Encourage your child to pray before most activities. Short ejaculatory prayers are effective for teaching children to invite God into every activity. For example, on your way out you can say “may God bless our journey and bring us home safely in Jesus name”. or “Bless my food O Lord God” before meals. Short simple prayers help children learn to include prayers into their daily activities. Be consistent. In consistency lies the power. Consistency helps create the pathway for children to follow. Even though the child seems uninterested, just carry on praying regularly. Thanks for reading Photo credit Pixabay

Raising the Christian child- Long prayers


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I have just opened my eyes and its 4:20 am! Well, this has not happened by accident. It’s because I wanted to watch the boxing match everyone has been talking about for days. The hype for this match has been epic!. The WBC heavy weight title fight between Tyson Fury (TF) and Deontay Wilder (DW). For starters, when I watched the last pre-match interview, TF looked really different and in a good way. Trim, fit and awesome. But so did DW too. Trust boxers… each man had been telling us how good he was and how he would wipe the floor with the other. I really wanted to see it unfold firsthand. So I am very excited but rather than break the silence, I would put my thoughts down on paper. Let’s see if you enjoy the match as I am doing right now. Ring Entrance TF makes his entrance first. As I said earlier, he looks trimmer and sharper. He has also chopped off his signature beard. Errrmmm…. I am not too sure making too many changes is such a good idea. I am a gypsy at heart myself but we’ll see. Oh! something else has changed from the last two times I watched TF. The “return of the Mac music is not on cue”.  I am a bit worried now at this point. I just feel like he has jinxed the fight but we’ll see. DW. I was surprised that he was booed at he made his entrance. He is at home for Christ’s sake. We shall see what that is all about soon. Anyway, he enters the ring wearing a cloak with feathers all around the neck, a crown and half of a face mask. If his intention was to be a lion, he certainly missed the designing memo because he looks more like a vulture. He is not making any big body moves. He looks pretty calm considering all his pre match comments. Perhaps he is in the famous Zone that we hear athletes enter during competitions. But there is a thin line between entering the zone of athletics and entering the zone of fear. Hear ! Hear! Rounds 1-3 The first 3 rounds have been for TF so far in my opinion. Wilder has been unable to land any massive punches at this point. I hear DW will normally knock people out within the first 4 rounds. I just feel that if TF can  hold him off until the end of round 4 he will stand a chance… Round 4 DW seems to be coming out a bit more. More of those his famous right hooks beginning to show. But his reach is shorter than TF’s. DW has been very unable so far. He walked in looking like he was in the zone. But with each punch he is unable to land, I wonder if that was fear I saw in his eyes at the start. TF has been so confident, doing his foot walks, throwing punches and really moving around. DW just appears to be chasing him around most times. Round 5 This is our chance. Go TF! Sorry, did I just give away my bias? Come on, to be fair I am British so it’s not surprising. Compadre and all. First few seconds in and  I have seen a few combos from TF. Fatigue appears to be setting in now to on both sides. TF has not been very active in this round. His punches appear to have decelerated. Fewer punches, less movement. He is not as sharp as he was in the first few rounds. To be fair even though I hate to admit it, DW looks stronger in this round. Round 6 OMG I can’t believe the match is still on… I think DW has a plan and TF needs to be aware. TF has won the previous 5 rounds in my books. A flash card on the screen appears to have given round 2 to DW. Seriously, are these referees watching the same fight?  If he wins a few more, then DW will need a knock out to win.  DW is trying to reach but can’t seem to get to the gypsy king. I imagine that an unsuccessful punch would be more exhausting than land an actual punch. TF just locked in a few punch combos and DW had to use some high blocks to save himself. DW just finally landed a successful punch. He probably plans to knock out TF but that may not be a good idea for him because the gypsy king means business. Round 7 Wow. Round 7????? Here we are in round 7, I certainly did not see this coming. I really need a wee but I can’t bear to miss a moment! DW is not even able to land punches TF is controlling the fight. He looks confident and still active. Infact he looks stronger than he did in round 4. Nice right hand by TF now. Wow some nice combos too by DW and TF looked like he was in trouble as a result. In fact he had to lock DW to save himself. These punch combos seem to have boosted DW’s confidence. Psychologically that seems to have brought them back on equal grounds.  We can’t rule out DW. This was such an interesting round that it seemed shorter. Round 8 They have to dig deep now. It’s been a settled round so far. TF physically towers high above DW so much. It’s unbelievable that their height difference is 2″. TF’s confidence, foot walk and body language are all goading  DW. Some nice jab combo from TF at the moment and so far, he seems to be clinching this. TF is a total tease. The round ended with DW landing some nice jabs and TF’s body language appearing to suggest indifference. Round 9 This fight is turning out to be value for money for all TF’s fans. A swelling is quite visible now under DW’s right eye. It’s amazing how confident TF still looks. […]

Wilder vs Fury: WBC Boxing Championship Fight



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Today I am reflecting on the significance of the poppy to me. Before I came to live in Europe, I had never spared a thought about the world war 1. Not because I did not care but mainly because its significance was never impressed upon me as a person. Sadly in Africa, history is poor. It is the responsibility of a nation to hand down significant historical stories about various issues to each coming generation. Sadly, we are impoverished as a people by a government who do not feel the need to tell us stories about our past. To impress on us the need to keep in remembrance, the sacrifices made for us by generations past that have enabled us partake in this future of peace alongside the rest of the world. Recently, it emerged that Prince Charles made a trip to Nigeria in commemoration of the Armistice Centenary. Why go to Africa, I thought. Surely we were not involved in the world war 1? No sooner had I blurted out my surprise than I was corrected by my friends. Nigerians took part they said. In fact, one of my friends disclosed that his father had enlisted but never got to travel because the war ended before he could. He said it solely, with somewhat of a grief. To the extent that he described his father’s exclusion from the war as unfortunate. It was as though, the singular fact that his father did not fight in the war reduced his emotional connection to the on going commemorations that were taking place all around the world. After hearing this, I found it a bit sad that as a nation, we had mostly been deprived of our connection with the current events as a result of the omission of our historical stories from most of our lives. And so I had to find a way to connect with the wider story of war, conflict, sacrifice and now peace. In death lay the connection with this story. These veterans who we remember today fought in a physical battle. For many, their participation was voluntary but for others, they simply had no choice. There was a battle and they had to play their own part in it. Some found the prospect to be exciting while others were petrified. We all are faced with different battles in life for which we too struggle, fight, sacrifice and hope to find peace from in the end. Some of these battles are physiological (within our bodies), others are social. Some are psychological while others are cultural. I could go on and on listing the possible forms and shapes that our battles may take but the fact remains that we are constantly at war with one thing or another from within or without. For the war Veterans, the poppy emerged to commemorate their sacrifice and be for us a sign that helped us keep them in remembrance. This was rightful. Once a Canadian physician named Lieutenant Colonel John Macrae wrote a poem called In Flanders fields where he spoke about the poppy. In it he referred to poppies that grew over the graves of fallen soldiers during the war after personally burying his close friend in battle. poppies happen to grow from seeds. These seeds die to the ground before growing out beautifully. This in a way is significant in that it gives us hope about the future. That having toiled and struggled, suffered and died, like the seed, we will rise again in splendour and beauty. In his poem, Macrae wrote from the perspective of the dead, urging us the living to carry on holding the touch and fighting on till victory. Part of the poem also asks us never to forget the sacrifice of them who once were but now have fallen so that we might live. For when we forget, the poem suggests that they will not sleep so sweetly in their graves. Today, I remember many who have died fighting different wars. Some for my sake, some for the sake of others. Some even fought their own battles gallantly till the end for themselves. We remember you today and always. We hope that we too will keep on trying our best in this life to leave the world better than we met it. Not only in terms of conflict resolution but also in terms of the way we interact with the physical world- our environment. On a final note, I salute all the veterans war, current service men and even those currently enlisting. I acknowledge the sacrifices you have, are and still make for us to enjoy the freedom that has become normal. I also remember those families left behind to bear the sacrifice of losing their loved ones- those service men and women who paid the ultimate price with their lives. Thank you for reading Please see other posts Photo credit Pixabay

Reflecting on the Armistice Centenary


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Hmmm. We are having a history lesson this morning. I liked to think that I was showing my 6year old how tomatoes are sold in my motherland Nigeria (he loves hearing about Naija) when I set up this tomato stall this morning in the living room. It got us all buzzing and talking about home- our history heritage and culture of the Nigerian people (sounds like the title of my GST 101 course in Abraka Thumbs up to all the Delsuites in the house🙋‍♂️) In reality, this was for my own benefit. I bought these tomatoes in the local market “£1 a bowl”. However, for some reason, all I could think of was “abule” in Ajao estate (holla to all my estate gees🙋‍♂️) and Mile 12- the Tomato depot I used to accompany my mummy to. Good old days. As a child, I nursed many ambitions at different times. One of them was to be a tomato seller. I remember how I was always left amazed by the tomato picking, packing and shading skills some of the sellers had. Woman: buy tomarr-to buy timati Mummy: Elo ni tomato Woman: Eleyi 10naira meta 25naira Mummy: (pointing at the bigger ones and adding another pile) ati eleyi nko? Woman: hmmm, emi o ta! Meta meta 30 naira Mummy : jaale nko ( I loved the sound of that word jaale although funny enough in abraka (urhobo) we said blo👊 at this point) Woman: (nodding and looking distracted). Shey ofe ra ata rodo ? Mummy : yes (can’t remember how it sounded in Yoruba) The woman would at this point give my mum a good price. Then little me would stand waiting for this was the time when the best bit would start. The bit that made me scream to “follow”mummy to market. …. It was 1.The-nylon-bringing-out-moment followed by 2.The-packing-the-tomato-with-lightening-speed-moment then, 3.The-tying-the-bag-moment and finally 4.The-putting-it-in-my-mummy’s-bagco-super-sack-moment. As mum made to leave to find where to grind the pepper, I would linger on dreamily as I watched the woman bring out a basin of Tomatoes and start arranging new ones on the dark table in a similar way to the one I did in my picture below ready for sale. Mummy would then shout my name. Lauretta !!! (Because mummy never succumbed to calling me Laura😀) come let’s go you silly girl! Then I would be beside her wondering how the women did it? I loved it and I really wanted to sell tomatoes one day too. These women and men who sell in our markets in Nigeria are not celebrated enough. They work so hard in the scorching heat to help provide this valuable service. No matter how rich or poor we are, without them we we would not eat. Someone has to do the job and please don’t laugh too much at having this ambition. I just wish for a world where they and many others like them who sell staple foods around Nigeria especially would be looked after better. Some of my friends have done this job to survive in the past. I celebrate you. You share a piece of this history lesson that I provided to my boy today. You also have done what I never managed to achieve. Cheers to all the hardworking people out there 🍷 I forgot to say sorry to all the Yoruba people whose language I may have murdered up there….Ekepele Miss Shokunle…..in Lagbaja’s voice😀 Thank you for reading.

A history lesson for my son : Remembering the Tomato sellers



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  So here is this seemingly innocent dude. He believed in “love and living happily ever after”. Once in his life he found the one. Little did he know that he was about to be introduced into a world of heartbreak, deceit, lust and sex. In fairness to him, he kept striving to find the one as he had always pictured (oh yes… guys do that too!) but he kept giving love. Life kept taking from him and giving him nothing in return. A series of events had redefined this young lad and built him to be who he was- someone who had fallen out of love with LOVE. Here is strike one – Guy meets girl, and for the purpose of clarity we shall call the beautiful lady Sharon and the guy Zuchi. Sharon was a goddess; she was so pretty that it scared him. They both met at a matriculation event where he got introduced to her by his sister as her course mate. From that moment he could barely take his eyes off her. Zuchi made small talk and found out that she was also funny and smart. The day went on better than he had hoped. Sadly like every good thing that comes to an end, so did the day! He wondered if knowing Sharon should end with the day but decided against it. He realised that if he played his cards right, then it could be the start of something beautiful. Sharon began to make her way home. As she started to leave he reached for her hand. He looked down at her and asked if he could see her again. She said she was going to be busy over the next couple of weeks and so could not assure him of her availability. Well at least, it was not a no! Therefore, he settled for her number. The next couple of weeks and months were blissful. They spent most of the time talking and texting non-stop on the phone. He tried to arrange a proper date but that didn’t happen as quickly as he had hoped. School was in full swing and both parties got busy with their respective schedules.  One evening, Zuchi decided to find time to visit her at her hostel. That was the best decision. It became easier for them to see each other more often. They always met up after classes and just talked. At other times they took walks, sometimes they even ate together. They just enjoyed each other’s company. He got a little carried away with their arrangement thinking that all he needed to do was profess his love for her and she would be his forever. Luckily, he came up with a plan to tell her exactly how he felt about on Valentine’s Day. Zuchi got the perfect gift and headed to Sharon’s hostel to unburden his heart. He could finally get the woman he had always wanted to call his. When he got there he met two dudes already there to see her. Zuchi was surprised because he had informed Sharon the day before that he was coming to spend the day with her and she had agreed. He didn’t mind though as he acknowledged the guys’ presence. He went in to greet Sharon with a peck but she ducked and opted instead for a side hug. At that moment he began to reassess the scenario he had walked into. Zuchi kept telling himself that he was over analysing it all. He spent the next half hour trying to make conversation with her but she seemed to split her attention seamlessly amongst her three guests. After a while, Zuchi just decided to end the most awkward experience he had ever been in. He reached into his pocket brought out his gift and gave it to her. She collected it from him and smiled. She mouthed the words “happy Valentine’s  Day dear”,  and then Zuchi left. Zuchi left the room thinking and contemplating every second he had just spent in her hostel. He told himself that he would get another opportunity to tell her that he was in love with her. That night he decided to tell her everything. He couldn’t wait till the next time they were together. It was 9.59 pm when he left his room.  He headed straight to Sharon’s. All through the journey, he kept rehearsing his lines and trying make them as smooth as ever. In reality, he didn’t care too much about the delivery. All he hoped for was the courage to say all he had to say. He had held back his feelings every minute and every second he was with her. Zuchi got to Sharon’s door but hesitated for a second or two. He could hear Coldplay’s “In my place” playing lightly in the background. “Yes, the stars are aligning for this” he thought to himself. The mood was definitely right for him to pour his heart out to her. With a deep breath he knocked on the door. “oh!!!!!! Bimpe don’t come back here to ask for anything again”, Sharon barked. Bimpe was Sharon’s nosey neighbour who was always borrowing one thing or the other even up to food items. Sharon opened the door with a frown that quickly turned into shock as soon as she realised that it wasn’t Bimpe at the door. She looked straight at him and started shaking uncontrollably. He moved to hold the shaking arm with which she held the door. Zuchi was also trying to understand her reaction to seeing him. She looked like she had seen a ghost. He tried to go in but she didn’t move. She stood firm, blocking him with the door slightly open now as he held her arm. Zuchi then opened the door wide so he could hold her as she seemed like she was about to completely fall off balance. She was muttering stuff he couldn’t understand. In the dim light he could see a […]

Falling out of love…with love. By Ezimen


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The WH writers’ community was launched in order to create a platform that allows everyone actively participate on the blog.  It provides a creative platform to allow other opinions, stories and views to be published on this website. It gives a voice and a space to showcase the otherwise lonely essays that lie in files, cupboards or closets. Are you a writer, do you like writing or just have an opinion to share? Perhaps you have some stories stuck in your head or just something to say? Then we will love to hear from you. However, before you do, please take a look at some House-keeping rules: Rules Submission rules: 1. Be original. This means that we prefer posts that have not been previously published anywhere. Tell your own story. If you are a blogger, provide a link to your blog and we will consider it. 2. Length doesn’t matter. We do not focus on word count but content. So we do not mind if it takes 500 or 5,000 words to tell your story. 3. Include some info about yourself. Please write a short bio- Your name, what you do, and a short statement that will appear at the bottom of the post if you can. 4. Limit in-post self promotion. If you have a product or service you want to promote, please link to these in your bio. Links to relevant articles either on Whispering hope or other blogs within your post are ok. 5. The Featured Image is normally selected by Whispering hope Admin, but if you have a suggestion please let us know by also including the link. Most of the images we choose come from Pixabay. When suggesting an image please add the link so we can make sure there are no copyright infringements. 6. Your post may be edited.  We normally leave posts untouched, but in some cases we may edit things such as the title, grammar, format, etc. 7. Please allow up to 3 weeks for a response. We aim to read and reply to every guest post submission, If you don’t hear back from me within 2 then you can send us a gentle reminder. 8. Electronic publishing rights. By submitting your story to us you give Whispering hope the right to publish it on this platform. 9. Promote and share your story with your network ! That way your friends and fans will know about your work. General Rules: Vulgar and insulting materials and names will be removed. We do not permit obscene, hateful, offensive, defamatory, abusive or harassing material to be published on this website. We do not allow posting of personal and identifiable information within articles. Please do not post information that encourages criminal acts and/or give rise to civil liability. Respectful debate and opposing opinions are welcome, but please behave courteously and responsibly at all times. If you have a issue or question regarding our administrative policies or actions, contact us via info@whisperinghope.co.uk Keep your messages on topic for the particular discussion you are involved in. Please be aware that all public contributions are the opinions of the contributors only and do not represent the opinions of Whispering hope.  All the rules above apply to all articles and comments on this site. These rules are in addition to some of the rules documented extensively in our  Disclaimer page. This site is not responsible for any comment users post. We reserve the right, but undertake no duty, to review, edit, move, or delete any content submitted by users, without notice. Sound ok? If so please get in touch by emailing us at info@whisperinghope.co.uk. Please quote “WH writers’ community” in the subject line. We look forward to hearing from you! The Whispering Hope Team. Photo credit: Pixabay

The WH writing community. Find out why everyone is talking about it!