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More than a day….

It is not unusual to hear some people refer to days like Valentine, Birthdays and Anniversaries as just another day. I think differently, first of all, every day is a blessing in my world. Another chance to do right, live better and do more.

Special days are even more important as they mark the start of something new. Each recurrence presents an opportunity to evaluate how well you have done, applaud yourself or course correct.

The thought of an applause worthy Special day gives me an adrenaline rush since I get to give myself a treat for a job well done.

O well, you can say I love celebrations in whatever form, after all we only get to live once. So when our tenth anniversary came knocking, we could not resist the urge to celebrate.

As I dreamed up ways to make this more than just a day, an amazing Black Friday Deal too good to be true popped up on my screen. You can call it a coincidence, I will choose miraculous. I watched my dream escape to the island of Cape Verde become a reality; the right price and an irresistible deal and Voila, Project Verde was activated.

Four hours later, we touched down on the beautiful island of Cape Verde somewhere off the West African coast surrounded by the Atlantic ocean. Blue beaches, lovely resorts, great foods, beautiful sunset and world class hospitality.

Project Verde Goals accomplished…….

A well deserved celebration of ten awesome years of growing and learning together. As we celebrated, we are reminded that we are better today because yesterday we chose tomorrow together. We believed, we worked and now the project continues.

Life is a project with milestones along the way, so think of today as a milestone in the ‘Love’ department. Even though, some folks say ‘love don’t cost a thing’, love does cost something, it is in the action and the sacrifice. It is never idle, it is always doing. So whenever an opportunity presents itself for love to be expressed, sound the alarm and make it loud and clear that you love and you love for real. Don’t just sit back and watch today go by, find a box of chocolate or whatever tickles you and take sometime out to celebrate love and friendship.

Because love is a beautiful thing, make this Valentine more than just a day…………

Happy Valentine Day!!!

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Never too late…..

I often marvel at the elasticity of the human spirit, something in us keeps striving, keeps pressing and keeps trying until we have more than an aha moment.

Meet Ms. Grace or ‘mummy’ as i like to call her and yes this is a real person and a real story.

A few months ago, we all listened to a young lady speak to us at a Women Conference on the topic, ‘Dare to Dream’.

Mummy is in her late fifties and I found it surprising that she was as excited as we younger folks. Fast forward to a few weeks later, she whispered to me, I have started sewing again. Even though I don’t know if that spark lit a fire, I was just excited that someone took the learning and acted on it.

Exactly one year later, while gisting away, she mentioned a store, I didn’t probe much because we were talking about more important things. On a Sunday morning right after church, she slipped an invitation into my hand.

Mummy was opening a restaurant, she called it ‘Souper Woman Kitchen’; Souper I guess because of the mainly soup dishes that she will be serenading her customers with.As I look more closely at the word ‘Souper’, I think of the closest English word to it ‘Super’. 

Ms. Grace is an example of so many ‘super’ humans out there striving, pressing and demonstrating the elasticity of the human spirit.

At close to 60, Ms. Grace listened to a young lady tell us that if we don’t take action, our dreams will remain what there are ‘dreams’.

She took action, not just one, several little steps. Souper Woman Kitchen opened, I missed the opening but heard that she is excited about this new opportunity.

As I reflect on this story and my interactions with Ms. Grace,  I recall that she was always on time for all meetings (Discipline), listened with intent  (Deliberate), acted on what she heard (Determined) and was very comfortable around young people (Teachable). I find that you gain a lot of fresh insight from being around younger folks.

Now and in the years to come, it is not OK to dream and write goals, be like Ms. Grace and take action.

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Here is wishing you the best life has to offer, see you next week…….

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Hi, We are Idorenyin and Thelma Mbang

We love to tell stories that draw out lessons from every day life.

If our stories strike a cord with one person, then our day is made.

Life is a journey, it leaves imprints along the way; good, bad and sometimes just plain ugly. As you go through daily life, keep your đź‘€ on who you are BEcoming.

We hope you enjoy our post each week, don’t forget to leave a comment, subscribe to read more stories and tell your friends about us.

Here is wishing you the best that life has to offer

Idorenyin & Thelma Mbang

Paper Trail

Have you ever tried chasing a piece of paper that is being blown away by the wind, Pretty difficult right? In most cases, you never catch it.

To chase this paper, you’ll need to focus on the paper, the wind direction and nothing else. Often, the paper falls to the ground, stays for a few seconds, attracting you to it and off it goes again. Almost like the paper or the wind is playing tricks on you. Oh! I forgot to mention that you’ll also have to contend with oncoming vehicles. So much energy, just to catch a piece of paper that you may never get. Finally, you stop and wonder why you even bothered, you hiss and turn around and the paper goes on its never-ending journey riding where the wind takes it, just like a stray balloon or kite.

Depending on how long you put into the chase, you would have probably wasted a few minutes or more. But do you know that those minutes can turn to days, months and years when you consider some of the things that we all chase in our lifetime? We risk losing out on the things that really matters and even stand the chance of hurting others in the process. I guess the following questions are worth asking: Is it really worth it? What are we giving up for the chase? What risks are we taking for the chase? And whether or not we catch ‘It’, will we look back and regret lost time?

The book of Ecclesiastes talks a lot about chasing things in life that in the end, comes to nothing.

“I observed everything going on under the sun, and really, it is all meaningless – like chasing the wind”. (Ecclesiastes 1:14 NLT)

I remember talking to a friend a few years ago who was a full time Employee, an active Politician, a Pastor, a Husband/Father and was doing a PhD at the time. His family seemed to be paying the heavy price for all the caps he was wearing. I gave him this advice back then. I told him to pay attention to the cap that has the greatest potential of pulling all others down if it falls. I reminded him that the crowd that comes with all other caps will be there to laugh and celebrate with you, but only one of these caps will be there to cry with you. Take your pick and focus on the right cap – the cap with responsibilities and consequences that stay with you to the end.

Back to analogy of the flying paper, sometimes, depending on what information is on the paper being blown away, losing the paper may be too costly. You should carefully, tactfully and cautiously chase, while looking out for your safety and the safety of others around you.

Not everything lost is worth chasing. While you decide on what is worth chasing, always remember to strike the right balance between the chase and the cost.

Note to self – Sometimes, in letting some things fly away, the wind may just blow them right back to you. Choose wisely

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What Manner of Love?

It’s love week, yes oh!

All over the world, gifts will be received and given, a fine display of creativity as boy and girl, man and woman work overtime to impress and outdo. Pockets will bleed in the process and as I sit I have no idea what I have planned.

This week, we tell a story of a different kind of love. I know a certain Someone who knows how to love, taught and showed us how to. He’s got eternity years of experience under His belt and has been playing the love game since Eden.

Oh yes, He……

Love like a creator, giving shape and light where a void once existed

Love like a father, giving good gifts to His children

Love like a mother, aware of our needs and more than capable of remembering His own

Love like a friend, laying His life as the ultimate sacrifice for our sins

Loves like an artist, with each name inscribed in the palm of His hands

Loves like a well wisher, wishing above all things that we are in good health and our soul prospers

Loves like a potter, moulding each clay fit for purpose

Love like an intellectual, with intentional thoughts to bring us to an expected end

Loves like a farmer, the right soil for each seed with a bountiful harvest guaranteed

Loves like a weatherman, knowing the storm ahead and guiding with whispers that say go or wait, I am with you

Loves like a storyteller, each parable pointing us back to the way

Loves like a teacher, instructing us on the best pathway for our lives,  watching our every step with keen eyes

Loves like a Good Shepherd, leaving the ninety-nine to go after the one

Loves like a lover, he calls me the apple of his eye

Loves to the end, going ahead to prepare a place where the streets are made of gold

Oh, what manner of love this is, that we should be called ‘Sons’, Joint heirs in glory and friends.

Jesus loves me so much, he loves you too. He daily calls us to a relationship with Him and has more than enough room for all who yield to His call.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16 NKJV)

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One Year After

It has been one year since Life and Becoming started and we have loved this journey. Every Saturday, we committed to share a story in our quest to reach ‘One’. Each story challenged us personally and we hope changed your own perspective. We reached more than one and we are taking time out to acknowledge all those who helped us in this journey.

Thanking God for daily inspiring and giving us the courage to keep writing, one story at a time and reaching one person at a time.

Thank you to our family for being our first readers and cheerleaders.

Thank you to our techy friends who came alongside us to help us figure out the technology behind blogging. Thank you for your time and effort.

Thank You to you, our readers who come back every week to read and connect with us – what’s the point of a story if there is no one to read it. Thank you for reading, liking, commenting and sending us private and public words of encouragement. Thank you to those who spotted errors and reached out to tell us to correct a spelling. Thank you for receiving our whatsapp reminder every week and clicking or ignoring it. All in good faith.

We love you and pray that as you continue this journey with us, we will all grow together and receive boldness to share our story, not because they are any different but because in the midst of it all, they point to our source and just by sharing them, we testify Christ.

God bless you!

Idorenyin & Thelma

Friend of Sinners

Son of Man, Healer, Saviour, Master, Lord are a few words used to describe Jesus. My friend put up a picture with a write up that says, ‘this year, I want to be more like Jesus – hang out with sinners’ and a list of other things that Jesus will do.

This particular reputation of Jesus has become very popular for good and bad reasons. I have been reflecting a lot on this description of Jesus, as the Friend of sinners. Why was He a Friend of sinners and how can I be just like Him?

I find that today, many people reference Jesus’ friendship with sinners only as a justification to remain equally yoked with unbelievers. But scriptures make it clear that we are not to be equally yoked. So how can we be like Jesus, the Friend of sinners and at the same time be unequally yoked?

Jesus indeed was a friend of sinners, that is the exact reason why He came. But Jesus was conscious of why He came, not just to befriend but to save. Friendship was a pathway to transformation. Jesus never failed to tell the sinner, go and sin no more; He never failed to tell stories that redirect, correct and admonish. More importantly, He never did what sinners did. His life was a self-correcting instrument as He called on all sinners that He encountered to follow Him – His way, His life and His ministry.

So for those of us who have positioned ourselves just like Jesus, the Friend of sinners, I want to ask a simple question – When last did you look that friend headed in the wrong direction and say in Jesus’ word, go and sin no more? When last did your life lead your friend to transformation?

The Bible tells us that we are not to be equally yoked with the unbeliever. If it is not clear where we stand, then our light is not shining. We are called to take a stand and just like Jesus, say to the sinner, Go and sin no more!


“For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile.”
(Romans 1:16 NLT Bible)

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On Target

Every now and then, I love to sit back, relax and watch a good movie. My husband likes action movies from the Marvel Hall of Fame. One of the scene from an action-packed movie that stays with me is when a fighter jet is about to release a missile. The first action the fighter pilot undertakes is to find the target and then lock the target. At that point, someone will utter the words ‘target acquired’ and next, the missile is released. I often find it amusing how the missile trails the target to a logical conclusion. In the end, something is blown up. A skilled pilot might be able to lure the missile long enough to trick it into blown itself upon contact with another object but oftentimes, the missile trails the target until an explosion occurs.

This year, ‘Focus’ may be a good skill to acquire because focus keeps you on the track that you need to be once you identify where you are going. So where are you going this year? Who do you want to become? What do you want to achieve? Who is waiting for you to show up?

The Bible reminds us that ‘the world is waiting for us to manifest’ (Romans 8.19). Manifestation is an outward expression of ‘Who’ and ‘What’ is on your inside. It is time for us to begin to ask some pertinent questions – Why me? Why now? Why here? The answers to these simple questions can guide you to your target. Once the target is acquired, just like the fighter, you can release the missile that ‘you are’ and go after that target with an appetite that can only be quenched when the mission is accomplished.

You have a mission, I have mine too, it gets clearer every day. Like Paul, may we run the race that is before us and feel bold to declare, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith and now I can claim my crown. More than ever before, I encourage you to run your race with laser focus and stay rooted in your faith in God because that too will be tested daily. Don’t fall by the wayside, make it across the finish line…..Focus

pexels.com

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i SEE

Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. (Habakkuk 2:2)

Meet Sarah and David, over seven years ago, they were newly married living in a nice house downtown. But they both shared a common vision of living on a large expanse of land where they could be almost self-sufficient. One day, they agreed to sell their home and go out searching. They found land in the middle of nowhere and though everyone thought they were both out of their minds, they bought 80acres of land on the outskirts of town, bought a trailer and moved into it with their two-year-old and a heavily pregnant Sarah. For the next five years, the family welcomed two more beautiful girls and continued to lead a normal life hosting friends and family in their not so pleasant trailer home.

The whole time, their vision of a nice home overlooking a large expanse of land was very clear in their minds. By the time we paid a second visit to their home, a trip we all now look forward to as a family, they shared their journey with us. Sarah, David and their three daughters now live in a nice carefully planned bungalow. Their home overlooks a never-ending expanse of land that enables them to grow their food, serves as a playground for the girls to roam freely and a hunting ground for David and his friends. The finished product now beautiful to behold, as they both shared how inconvenient the process was on most days. They confessed that even though most people who came to visit probably passed them off as weird, they both knew what they were seeing and that kept them focused.

Pixabay from Pexels

My question for us today is ‘What are you seeing? Is it desirable enough to keep you focused when everyone else thinks you are weird, strange or a bit off?

When you consider your walk of faith, is your vision of Heaven clear enough in your mind’s eye? Is the sound of God’s voice saying to you, ‘Well done good and faithful servant, enter into your rest’, desirable and worth the wait?

Like Sarah and David, the only way you can make it to the finish line is if you are convinced beyond reasonable doubt that you want to walk with God to the end. You are willing to endure the uncomfortable, willing to be passed off as weird and out of your mind.  Because most days, your Christian walk will require you to be different from the rest in your words, thinking pattern and your actions. Will the laughs and talks derail you or will the picture ahead of you propel you to be steadfast, unmovable, always abiding in the word of the Lord.

Note to Self – May my vision of heaven be written so plainly in my heart that I run with it daily, because in the end, that is all that matters.

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My ‘Blockbuster’

When I think of a Blockbuster Movie, I think of a highly anticipated movie that smashes world financial and viewing records and finally sweeps awards at the Oscars.

I usually think of the process that leads to the release of such movies. The directing, search for ideal actors/actresses, the right plot, right location and the perfect ending – sad, happy, exciting or a call to wait for Part Two.

A look at the behind the scenes footage tells a much bigger story than the movie itself. It is where all the engineering, the re-writes, the U-turns, and the challenges go on. Ultimately, it takes a great Director to release a great movie that smashes world records.

Photo by Donald Tong from Pexels

I think about one of my favorite movies – The Avengers, somehow different clips of the movie manages to leak out ahead of the final release. Each clip speculates and creates expectation about what was, is, could have been or will be. With all the speculations, in the end, we only get to see the final cut. But one person sees it all – ‘The Director’ who decide what parts he/she wants us to see. In fact, most times, even the actors don’t always know the full story. They get to act a scene and don’t know if that scene will make the final release or if it will come out in phase one, two or three… but the Director always knows!

I suspect that A-List actors retain their A-List status by carefully selecting roles in movies directed by someone with the right history and reputation.

As I ponder some more, I can see how similar our lives could be to a movie production process. We do not get to choose our movie script, our plot or how it plays out but we can choose our ‘Director’. People watch our lives just like a movie but scarcely know the ‘Behind the scenes’ process. But based on how our lives play out, you maybe able to tell Who is directing the movie.

When we choose the right Director, our own life movie gets to smash records and win the ultimate movie award. Interestingly, there will be a red carpet or should I say ‘Gold’ carpet for the A-Listers who will shine in their robes of white.

As an actor, won’t you want to work with a Director that is guaranteed to get you an Oscar win? In this life, only one Director can guarantee this. As you go through 2021, with all the uncertainties that lie ahead, the action, the thrills, the suspense, the comedy and the ending, I hope that you will choose the Director who knows it all. He knows the different times and seasons, what they come with and what lies ahead. He knows the best location for each plot and the supporting actors for your role. He knows what parts of the movie to hide and what parts to release to the world.  He has never directed a movie with a bad ending. With Him, the ‘Endgame’ is always a Win.. Always!

Photo by Donald Tong from Pexels

God is always calling out for actors to join Him, to love on Him and do as He so lovingly directs. As you heed His call to yield your life completely to Him, you can hold fast to His words that say;

“I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you”. (Psalms 32:8 NLT)

“For I know the plans that I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope”. (Jeremiah 29:11 NLT).

That’s a guaranteed win.

Note to Self – As uncertain as 2020 was, I will yield to a certain Hand to hold me through 2021.

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Have a greater 2021 doing great things!

Everything To Do With Love

Over 2000 years ago, the earth received angelic visits to announce the birth of a special baby. There was no room fit for a king but still, He came. A stable was all that was found but the Father did not withdraw His gift, He still gave. He didn’t come for the stable, the stable was just proof of what He was willing to do to get to you and me. The Bible is filled with stories reminding us of how far He will go, leaving the ninety-nine to come after us. His love is rugged, some even call it reckless, not in a careless way but in a persevering way.

As you reflect on the season, make it about Jesus and make room to receive His love and let it flow out to those around you.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16 NKJV)

From all of us at Life and Becoming, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

We will be taking a break to spend time with our family, we encourage you to do the same. Take this time to reflect on God’s word, pray together, eat together, laugh together, prepare for the coming year and have fun. Thank you for spending your Saturday mornings with us.

2021 will be a greater year with more insightful stories to help you with your daily walk with God.

We will be back on January 9, 2021……

10,000 and More Reasons

We drove by a church and saw this signage up front, ‘I am not buying a 2021 Planner until I see a trailer’. Not the trailer that moves, this signage was referring to the sneak preview you get of an upcoming movie, Yeap! that type of trailer. Seeing how 2020 turned out, you wouldn’t blame the person who came up with those words. This year was challenging on many fronts for different people. Our hearts go out especially to everyone who lost a loved one this year, praying that God comforts those left behind.

In the midst of all that could go wrong in one given year, you may find it difficult to be thankful or find any reason to. We understand but we have decided to be thankful and this is why. 2020 gave us a fresh perspective on life, making us think differently about what is important. Our list of reasons why we are thankful looks a little different and maybe off but its 2020, the year of the not so normal ‘Normal’.

So here we go, enjoy the roll call…..

1. Thankful for toilet paper – Yes, for the first time in our lives, we witnessed toilet paper elevate in priority, becoming an endangered specie. The shopping aisle was empty as many carted away with rolls of toilet paper, you will think it contained some kind of nourishment for the pandemic.
We did not join the madness but we had enough until the stores restocked.

2. Thankful for a sound mind – I was confined to a room for 14 days with my two-year-old daughter and We survived it.

3. Thankful for the great outdoors – Nature becomes beautiful when you have to stare at it from inside. Because we had limited options, we began to value simple things like taking a walk or driving around town.

4. Thankful for restriction – Being asked to sit still and not go out forced us to see the beauty within our walls and also gave us an appreciation for freedom that we often take for granted. Growing up, my dad insisted that Christmas was a day to spend with your family so we didn’t go out on Christmas day. This year as my city is still under lockdown restrictions, I am grateful that my dad taught us early to stay home with family on Christmas day.

5. Thankful for remote work – I have always being a fan of flexibility and looked forward to a time when employers and employees will reach a compromise on what works. Before 2020, most employers felt it was impossible to work from home but 2020 left employers with not too many options and everyone is happier to experience, appreciate and choose what works best.

6. Thankful for time to step back and discover one’s self –  A lot of hidden talents gained expression for so many people in 2020. So many written dreams became living dreams and this year, we have all watched so many Amateurs become Pros in new lines of endeavours.

7. Thankful for knowledge – 2020 was the year of information overload, so many free learning resources and those who took advantage of them,  GREW!

8. Thankful for Teachers – We have always respected teachers and caregivers but this year that respect grew. A few months of homeschooling gave us perspective. God bless our Educators!

9. Thankful for frontline workers – Men and women who choose daily to show up to work regardless of imminent danger and serve tirelessly with smiles on their faces. God bless our frontline workers.

10. Thankful for songs like Bare Necessities from the movie ‘Jungle book’ – Reminding us that after all is said and done, all we need are the bare necessities of life – food, water, clothing and shelter.

Our list this year is deliberately unconventional. Of course, our conventional list has more than 10,000 reasons for our heart to sing ‘Bless the Lord oh, my soul’.

Thank you God for 2020!

Not even our excel spreadsheet prepared us for what 2020 had in store for us but You knew, You saw and You still declare that ‘You have a plan for us, plans of good and not evil to give us a hope and a future’. Your word encourages us to give thanks no matter how the year went because whatever we faced, You knew…..

Note to Self – I am writing my 2021 plan, I don’t need a trailer because I’ve got You. You know and that is all that matters!

We love to hear from you, so don’t forget to like, leave a comment, follow us and tell a friend.

Have a great day!

Follow The Lights

This evening like the Wise men, my family and I decided to follow the lights. We all dressed up, packed a bag of treats, got into the car and began our long drive around town in search of Christmas decorations. We saw everything, lights, Christmas accents and figurines. Some houses even had full nativity scenes, it was amazing to see the houses lit up so beautifully. This is Christmas. You will agree with me that no matter how 2020 has been, it is still ‘the season to be jolly’.

Let me tell you a bit about this season. Many years ago, a babe was born. He was not an ordinary baby, this One was special in every way. His coming was foretold by great prophets of old, Isaiah said,
For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
(Isaiah 9:6 NKJV)

This Child was God’s gift of love to the world. The last and ultimate sacrifice for reconciliation, redemption and restoration.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life”. (John 3:16 NKJV)

He proclaimed Himself the Light of the world and every year the lights come out pointing us to a little town called Bethlehem, a regular carpenter named Joseph, a blessed and highly favoured virgin Mary, an Angel with a supernatural message called Gabriel, Shepherds watching their flocks by night, Three wise men from the east following a star and bearing gifts with exotic names like Frankincense and myrrh and a terrified King Herod.

Even though the world tries to secularise and downplay the significance of the season. Jesus remains the undisputable reason for this season. He is the Light of the world, His living gives us meaning. Knowing Him is knowing life and having purpose and meaning.

Throughout His ministry on Earth, Jesus called people to follow Him, it was a profound instruction to his followers to see what He was doing and do the same. A promise that He will illuminate the path and all we have to do is follow the lights.

With the year coming to an end, now may be a good time to take stock of your walk with Him. If you do not have a relationship with Him or you made some backward step, He has not stopped calling out to us to follow Him and He will make out of us the best version of our story for His glory.

As lights come out on trees and homes, may the light in our heart shine brighter than the rest. Remember that just like Him,
“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.  So let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
(Matthew 5:14‭, ‬16 NKJV)

This Christmas, ‘Be the Light’ and keep seeking Him.

We love to hear from you, so don’t forget to like, leave a comment, follow us and tell a friend.

Have a great day!

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