Well, hi guys. It’s been a minute. I haven’t posted since August and I’ve honestly missed writing. I hope you all had an amazing 2018 and that the last quarter of the year was just as productive as the beginning. I’m back and so excited for where God is going to lead both myself and MWC in 2019! So where have I been for 3 odd months…
A brief explanation. At the end of summer I had a plan to post just before I started uni again, but God basically told me to chill, he put on my heart that I was coming into a season where I needed to be still. I was very confused. The perfectionist in me wanted to stick to my plans and stay consistent and on a strict schedule. Keep myself busy and productive with MWC, uni, society and ambassador commitments. I learnt very quickly that it is wise to be obedient to God instantly!
The minute I wanted to go against his word to me, he made sure that life made me still by force by fire. As soon as I got to uni, things were going pear shaped, my routine was disrupted and I was unsettled for weeks. Once things had calmed down, I contemplated coming back without praying over it first. That week, I went to a midweek church course and God simply said to me ‘DWELL’. As soon as I heard that I knew to listen instantly.
I feel led to actually come back now and quickly reflect on the year that has been, 2018! So here I am.
The main two things I became acquainted with this year: My mental health and God’s grace.
Mental health is so important and everyone needs to take the time to understand themselves in terms of their mental health. Coming to understand that not being okay is okay, was a tough thing to get my head around this year, but as the 2018 went on I had challenging seasons, but I got to understand what I needed to do to get through them. Not to ignore it, not to hide it (which I can be good at doing), but consciously acknowledge how I was feeling and do something about that. Whether that was speak to someone, write in my journal, pray about it, watch a sermon, read my gratitude journal or have a good cry. I came to understand that it’s normal to feel down, but how I deal with that feeling is what will affect me the most.
Tips I can give:
- Learn your triggers: are there things or people that repetitively get you feeling a negative way? Identify them and adjust yourself so that you are always protecting your peace.
- Social Media Fasts: this is a whole blog post in itself, but hello hi, social media isn’t real. Every now and then log out of socials and back into real life. I started doing this more this year, and it helps to clear your mind so fast.
- Life isn’t perfect!: your plans may not always work out. You won’t always bang a First on that assignment, you might grow apart from someone, you may not get the internship but God’s writing your story and regardless of your plans not coming to pass, his always will!
- Keep a gratitude journal: I realised this year that I don’t celebrate my wins, but I dwell on my downfalls. This was doing me no favours. Everyday, or at least weekly, write down everything you are grateful for. It helps you to look back and see that you’re blessed, despite what hasn’t gone to plan, many things have by God’s grace.
- Know who to talk to: It’s important to talk to trusted people when you’re not feeling your best. However, be sure that the trusted people are the right people. Some friends can be trusted, but won’t speak life into you. Be discerning between who will build you up vs. who will make you a pity party or add negativity.
- Have your arsenal of scriptures ready: In Ephesians 6 vs 10 -17 it speaks about the full armor of Christ. If you study that passage, you’ll see that the breastplate of righteousness, belt of truth, helmet of salvation are all defensive weapons, while the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God is our only offensive weapon. You need to have your sword ready to combat how you’re feeling and speak life back into your situation.
These are just a few things I have been able to implement throughout this year when my mental health came knocking with vim. Hope this will be useful to someone as we go into 2019, a year of perfect health, both physically and mentally.
The other major thing brought to my attention this year was God’s grace! This may seem really odd, considering I have been saved since I was about 4. How did I just come to this realisation?
Long story short, coming to uni was a time where I knew I wanted to come and seek God for myself. I have been planted at my uni church since I started uni in first year. Messages have moved me, worship nights I went to were amazing, sermons have triggered me and when I’d come back home I would still serve in my home church and get the Word there too. I was trying to be a ‘serious Christian’ but I know now that I was trying in my own strength.
3rd of May this year I watched Pastor Michael Todd’s first message about Grace titled Grace Is (Grace Like A Flood Series – highly highly recommend you watch it) I was so wrecked. The best way to describe the feeling of the revelation I had, was like scales coming off from my eyes. Within an hour I felt shame leave, condemnation made a swift exit and God’s love flooded in. The message highlighted my performance oriented and perfection driven character that had basically kept me from fully understanding God’s grace and accepting what was freely given. The amazing, unmerited, undeserved and unearned Grace of God!
Understanding the message of grace was crucial for me and instantly made me see that I don’t serve God and do things his way so that he can love me, I live a life that pleases him because he loves me. I don’t need to work for his love, his grace has covered it all and shown an ultimate love by sacrificing his son, Jesus Christ for me! That alone is crazy when you deep it.
So funnily enough, there was a worship night at my uni on the 4th of May. Perfect timing? Definitely! Baring in mind I’m no stranger to worship nights. This one was different. NOW2018, was for me! The presence of God was so strong and there were so many times where I forgot that I was in a big hall filled with people, it felt like me and God were chilling the whole night, I was so free in his presence and it was amazing now I understood grace. So, the call came for people to give their life to Christ (a call I have answered before and have heard many times) as soon as that call was made I was at the front rededicating my life to Christ, no hesitation. Honestly, from that day onward I’ve experienced God differently, prayed differently, worshiped with a new understanding, things really changed.
I started being more intentional about studying the Word, praying, fasting, serving in my home church and watching sermons. I’ve been growing ever since and I thank God for his grace and mercy. Since then I’ve been filled with the spirit, have had beautiful encounters in God’s presence and been baptised. I’m nowhere near perfect and my walk is a journey, but my spiritual growth has been the highlight of my year!
Sidenote, life does not, I repeat it does not become butterflies and roses when you dedicated your life to Christ. Once the enemy loses one to the Kingdom he starts moving mad and there is a battle for your soul. As soon as you are saved, get rooted in a Christian community and church, always cover yourself in prayer and stay in the Word. The storms will come with vim, but you’re a King’s Kid, and you need to let the enemy know he has no jurisdiction around here anymore.
Overall my year has been a blessed one and I’m so grateful to all of you for riding with me this year. I was honoured to have MWC featured on theblackspace.co.uk in October, a platform for black women in creative spaces. It’s an amazing platform, with talented and gifted creatives in many fields, so it was a pleasure to be featured. MWC has been read from over 50 countries this year and that has been humbling to see. We also turned 1 earlier this year and had a giveaway which was won by a fellow creative (to be honest I just write my truth I don’t see myself as a creative as such, but he is) Abaka Debra (Abaka’s YouTube Channel), who does amazing poetry and spoken word pieces so be sure to check hos work out.
All in all, I’m so grateful for MWC’s journey this year, praying for more consistent content, new ideas and creative changes in 2019. Thank you all for your support, your love and everytime you’ve shared MWC on your socials it means alot. Wishing you all a happy new year in advance and a blessed 2019. ~ChidinmaE