Dear Africana Woman,
how are you doing? We are in lock down yet so much is going on. Which is magnified because we spend so much more time on our phones, scrolling through social media. I hope you are getting in the habit of protecting your peace. Sometime during the day whether it is 30 mins or an hour or even more, just turn off your phone. Rejuvenate. Give yourself time to love on you and do something that gives you joy. But you have to turn it off Babe. It does you no good that 20 people in your network re-shared the latest act of injustice. You are literally allowing your body to be in a continuous adrenaline elevated state of either fear, flight or fight. It's not healthy. The fight that we are in is a marathon. So you need to pace yourself to make it to the end. You have to have a strategy that will get you through to the end. Take it from me, shutting the world out for a some time every day, is not selfish. It is Necessary. Should be mandatory.
We are almost at the end of the series that breaks down KNOW your Roots, Grow your Purpose. Before I dive in I just wanted to highlight that 15-21 June is Men's Health Week. Listen, this is very much a woman's concern too because we feed them, we raise them and we counsel them. You best believe that we play a very important role in the positive health of our men. Let us also recognise that health encompasses the body, mind and spirit. This week on a Taste of Culture I switched it up by having a male guest on the show. I spoke to Chilumba K. Bwalya on the topic of Myths about African Men. It was a raw, no hold back conversation. Check it out for yourself and let me know what you thiink. Then today I am co-hosting a panel of gentleman and we will be talking about African Men and Mental Health. I know you are saying, ''Chulu why do you talk about metal health so much?" So my questions to you are these; how many men do you know who have died by suicide? How many men do you know who abuse a substance like alcohol or drugs because they cannot face reality? How many men do you know who abandon their responsibilities and mentally check out? Did any of these men that you know of seek professional help?.......that is why I keep talking about it. I hope you can join us or catch the replays and please share. You just do not know whose life you can save.
Let's dive into our topic for today which is Operating in Obedience, that is what the O stands for in the acronym KNOW. So far we have talked about Knowledge, Nourishment and today we can unpack Obedience. As long as you are a being, created by a higher power, you have a purpose. I believe you have a divine assignment on earth that is your duty to fulfill. Purpose goes beyond a career, a trade or a skill. It shows up in all aspects of your life. We spend years looking for our purpose, not realising it has always been in you. It is the thing that you do as naturally as breathing. For example, my purpose is to create sustainable communities through celebration. I remember being asked in an interview once, if I was to choose a part on a bicycle which part would I be. My answer was I would be the spoke because I am usually the person holding a group together. Whether it be my friends, my mentees, my work, I guarantee you that I will be the person that is organising activities and events that bring people together. My purpose does three things, it brings people together to create common memories which strengthens community ties. It also allows people to let their guards down and see humanity in each other when they celebrate together. Finally it creates a safe space for communication to develop. I have a wedding cake business, I coordinate a youth program, I mentor merit scholars, and I am the founder of Africana Woman blog and I am the host of A Taste of Culture live talk to name but a few things. The reason I list them is so that you can see how my purpose shows up in everything that I do.
People get hung up on the idea that your purpose will not support you financially and are afraid to risk fulfilling their purpose. We have been indoctrinated to believe that true success is not only materialistic, that is money and shiny objects but that it is also tied to a cookie cutter of life which is inclusive of education, prestigious career (doctor, engineer, accountant and lawyer) and marriage. Should you not tick all three of those boxes, darling, you are doomed. That is why many of us from society's perspective seem successful, fulfilled and happy. And yet on the inside you are miserable and you feel hollow inside as if a part of you is missing. You say to yourself, this is not enough. You try to tell someone about it and their response is you have food on your table, a good job, your bills are paid, a beautiful house, the latest car, what more do you want? And then they try to guilt trip you by saying something like, "there are many poor people out there who would kill for what you have." At that point you shrink back because you feel guilty for listening to the tug within you that is pushing you to believe that more is possible. Then you resign your mind to be content, which looks like a this is it attitude. This lasts in intervals maybe a few months or year passes but the discontent always returns.
It's quite simple really, you are not Operating in Obedience. God has sent you to fulfill a purpose on earth but you keep getting distracted. So He keeps reminding you of what he has sent you to do. This happens to me all the time with my son. I send him to deliver a parcel, along the way he gets distracted, he stops to play a game, and eat and then he comes back to the common room. I ask him have you delivered the package, he says oh no let me go do it, then he stops to read and chat then comes back to the common room. I ask him again, have you delivered the package? Then he tries again. This goes on until he finally does what he was sent to do. Does this sound familiar? You know what you are supposed to do. Nobody is supposed to tell you what to do. Most of the time God will put a big dream on your heart, but he does not show you the path to the dream, because He knows it will scare you away.
All He is asking is that you take one step in faith. Just start what it is that you have to do. Do it every single day. Do not be stuck on the idea that you have to know everything before you can start on your project, business, or idea. My mentor calls it sloppy progress. At some point you have to be willing to let your creator meet you at your needs. Give God something to bless. A disclaimer though, Obedience does not mean you should all go quit your jobs. I believe God places us in places of influence to make a greater impact in people's lives. For example, if you are a CEO and your purpose is to empower orphans, you are able to direct your CSR to projects that specifically serve orphans. You could partner with a number of organisations that are distributed around the country and have a greater reach. In comparison you could start your own non-profit, in a climate where the average lifespan for a non-profit is 5 years and only serve a limited community. However, I will say this, it is important to KNOW your roots, be connected with your higher power for guidance on what to do. If God says go start an orphanage, then go do it. If he says stay in your job, stay put.
I also know that many people are not clear on what their purpose is because of the distractions and noise. However, the more you operate in obedience the clearer your purpose becomes. Think of it like God is holding a recipe and you are the cook. He gives you the instructions one line at a time. This means that you do not know how one action can affect the final results. As you draw closer to the end of the recipe you begin to see how your obedience in following the instructions given to you step by step is coming together as a delicious dish. When you know whose and who you are, you will not worry about lacking for things. Be obedient to the limitless God who has already made a way.
This is a perfect place for me to stop. Know your creator. Be still and spend time with yourself to know your purpose. Finally, Operate in Obedience. You will be shocked how liberating it is. Have an awesome week my darling. Please let me know what you thought by commenting. Tell your friends about Africana Woman blog if you think it has helped you in any way. You know my desire is that your fall in love with yourself, flaws n all, and attract the life that you deserve.