The Beautifully Dressed Umpires at #Wimbledon 2015

Tennis happens to be one of my favorite sports. Interestingly, I’ve never played it before. Anyway, I followed the 2015 Wimbledon passionately and was disappointed that Nadal has not yet gotten back his winning form. Obviously, the heroic performance displayed by Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic remain memorable. Nonetheless, I remain a die-hard fan of Roger Federer.

Now, this post is not intended to report the competition but to point out something that struck me as I watched the highlight of the final match between Federer and Djokovic. See the picture I captured from their game below.

Chair and line umpires at 2015 Wimbledon.
Chair and line umpires at 2015 Wimbledon.

Did you notice that there are several officials on the court? Come to think of it, most spectators will never bother to find out the names of these officials. Although Djokovic carried the day with his remarkable performance, we will forever recall that it was a man named Federer that reached the final of the competition and was outplayed by his opponent. Hence, the players are more important and captivate more attention than the umpires in any game.

Also, great sports men have an amazing ability to shake off the disappointment of a defeat and prepare to do better in the next game or competition. Every setback should be a catalyst for sustaining our thirst for success, instead of making us quit the race. After he lost, Federer said,

“I am still very hungry and motivated and a match like this is very helpful.”

Guess what? I do not want to be an official (umpire, referee or linesman) in the game of life – I want to be a player. Players will be sweaty and experience emotional highs and lows during the course of the action. On the other hand, officials are the critics who assess the key performers, passing comments about their moves during the game. Just like umpires in tennis are so well dressed, critics are always looking good. They never get their hands soiled, never sweat and are better at using their mouths than their hands. Critics are self-appointed umpires to successful people and they never attempt anything laudable – they live a passionless life that is not devoted to anything remarkable. They are satisfied with the normal order of activities; take little or no risk at attaining something unusual, many times because of the fear of failing. They drift about without any definite sense of purpose and do not motivate or stir our souls about their noteworthy goals or achievements.

Theodore Roosevelt captured my thoughts succinctly:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, … who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

In summary, it’s the players and not the umpires who stand a chance to win awards and laurels in life. I prefer to be the former. What about you?

Best,

LEKE

Disappointments are a Blessing!

Rainbow after storm. Photo credit: http://positivepsychologynews.com/
Rainbow after storm.
Photo credit: http://positivepsychologynews.com/

A friend recently got promoted at work. However, I recall him mentioning that not too long ago, he had had such a dismal performance in the same organization that made his chances of promotion at the time very slim.

God always knows what He’s up to, but we are always clueless as to what he’s doing in our lives. When Jesus delayed and permitted the death of Lazarus, it resulted in disappointment and sorrow to his family. But in the end, their faith was built up and their joy was boundless after the dead and decaying corpse of Lazarus was raised back to life (John 11:44).

Similarly in our lives, God is the Potter, molding us into what He wants us to be. We like to sing the song that says,

“Spirit of the Living God, Fall afresh on me, Melt me, Mold me, Fill me, Use me.”

However, when the breaking and melting starts, we cry and sometimes lose hope because we think our heavenly Father has forsaken us and is making life unbearable for us. Nonetheless, it is only the vessel that God himself has broken and remolded according to his desire that He can fill up with his power and use to show forth His praise to the world and this generation. The breaking, melting and remolding process reconstructs our character to conform to the nature of Christ.

Your disappointment might be a miscarriage, relationship failure, marital delay, promotion delay, business/career stagnation or the death of a loved one. When we face disappointments that make us think that God’s name is being shamed in our lives, we should pray, “Lord, glorify yourself in my life in the way that you choose. Let this situation work out for my good and promotion in the end!”

Disappointments do not bring happiness in themselves. But I must confess that although the process might be hard, we will find out that God is faithful and will make things work out for our good!

Remain blessed,

LEKE

Interview with a Deported Migrant

Nigeria is such a blessed country, having an amazing diversity of culture, tribes, languages, people etc. I had always been aware of some striking facts about the three major tribes. For example, historically, the Hausa-Fulanis, who are the largest tribe, are the most experienced at national leadership. The Yorubas who rank second highest in population are well-known for their emphasis on and the priority given to education. It’s therefore not surprising that they have the best developed infrastructure of the top three. The Igbos, who are next in demographic dominance, are the most industrious and widespread around the country and around the world. As a Nigerian who has traveled to more than 20 out of the 36 states in the country, I can testify to the richness of our diversity.

During the day, I had a discussion, with someone I’d call Richard that revealed more about the country. He works as a security personnel at the organization where I am also employed. This interview is about the Benin people whose home is in Edo state, southwestern Nigeria.

Richard: I grew up in Benin, Edo state and it a thing of pride among us when you say you have traveled overseas. The passion we have for traveling is such that if a Benin guy is given a visa to live in Europe a few weeks before completing his PhD dissertation, he might prefer to drop out of the PhD program in his excitement to take advantage of the new opportunity. About 12 years ago, I traveled to Spain through Morocco. It was a very risky journey and many people died on the way. The deaths were not only due to sickness or the severity of environmental conditions. They were sometimes due to fellow migrants taking advantage of weaker ones. Sometimes, after some migrants ran out of personal supplies, they attacked others, who were better equipped, to steal their money and food.
VOL: How long did you spend in Spain?
Richard: About 3 months.
VOL: Why did you come back so quickly?
Richard:We were caught and deported.
VOL: So what did you do for a living while you were in Spain?
Richard: Nothing at all. We spent all the time hiding from the police. After we were brought back, I was determined to return shortly. However, I had seen some people die in the process of hustling who left nothing behind as a legacy. So I decided to get married and have, at least, a child before returning. I thought that in case things don’t go as planned, I will have raised a family.
VOL: It appears that you never went back.
Richard: My wife prevailed on me to not leave her and the kids alone; so I never went back.

Therefore, we may be safe to say that the Benin people have an unusual passion for international travel and could risk their lives to satisfy this craving. Who knows whether some of them are among the many who die on migrant boats on the Mediterranean? It’s time for the new government leaders to be led by General Buhari who will be sworn in later today to make the country conducive for all categories of people to be guaranteed an economic future. This way, the loss of lives in the search for better prospects overseas will be significantly minimized.

Grace

Grace Grace gives you pardon

When you deserved punishment

Grace gives favour

Where you did not labour

Grace makes you a winner

When you’d have been a quitter

Grace dries your tears

When you were limited by fears

Grace gives you hope

When in darkness men left you to grope

I thank God for his grace. I am a product of God’s grace and undeserved mercies. What else can grace do? How has grace helped you in life? Please share in the comments :).

Leke Babayomi blogs at lekebabayomi.wordpress.com Follow him on twitter @lekebabayomi Brace yourself to purchase a copy of his soon-to-be-released book: “The Silent Killer.”

You’re Due for Another Job

You’re due for another job when you usually find yourself checking Facebook without caring whether the work is done or not.
You’re due for another job when your friends think you’re on vacation because you post selfies on instagram  during working hours.
You’re due for another job when you usually have a fever on Sunday night.
You’re due for another job when time always moves so slowly during working hours.
You’re due for another job when you’re convinced that your job is boring.
You’re due for another job when your motivation to show up at work is to secure your month-end pay
You’re due for another job when your boss always reminds you about simple tasks you’re yet to complete.
You’re due for another job when everyone now thinks you’re stupid and incompetent.
You’re due for another job when you do not see the value it is adding to your future.
You’re due for another job when you’re repeatedly consoling yourself that your present position pays the bills.
You’re due for another job when your juniors become your bosses.
You’re due for another job when you lack interesting office experiences to share with your spouse or friends.
You’re due for another job when all you can say about your 9hrs at work is ‘my day was ok.’
You’re due for another job when your work  makes you a stranger to your spouse  and children.
You’re due for another job when you can no longer make time for family and friends.
You’re due for another job when your work lacks fresh challenges.
You’re due for another job when your happiest moment in the week is Friday evening and your worst moment is Sunday night or Monday morning.
You’re due for another job when it takes eternity to  figure out the solution to easy problems.
You’re due for another job when you find yourself saying or thinking , ‘I hate this job’.
You’re due for another job when you’re stuck at the same earning level for several years running.
You’re due for another job when you can no longer plan your expenses because you’re being owed several months salaries.
You’re due for another job when your spouse suggests it several times.
You’re due for another job when you cannot apply the skills from the present  job elsewhere.
You’re due for another job when your lifestyle is bigger than your boss’ own.
You’re due for another job when most of your colleagues are disgruntled. Why remain with a bunch of unhappy people?
You’re due for another job when you seem to be the smartest one around. It’s obvious you’re among the wrong set of people and you might soon begin to over-estimate your capability.
You’re due for another job when you’re the only superstar that hardly ever gets challenged by any other person.
You’re due for another job or position when your boss’ job is under threat because of your competence.

You’re due for another job when at least five of the situations described fit your circumstances. Please don’t continue to endure your present job in the hope that it will improve. A change is what can rescue you. You may change your responsibilities within the present organization or make a move to get hired by another employer that fits your career goals. However, if you have reached a point of abhorrence for working to make other companies rich, you may opt to start your own business. But the bottom line is DO SOMETHING!

Do you know other signs that indicate that a person is due for another job? Feel free to add them to the comments :).


Leke Babayomi blogs at lekebabayomi.wordpress.com

Follow him on twitter @lekebabayomi

Brace yourself to purchase a copy of his soon-to-be-released book: “The Silent Killer.”

Being Poor

Some people can write sha 🙂

Whatever

Being poor is knowing exactly how much everything costs.

Being poor is getting angry at your kids for asking for all the crap they see on TV.

Being poor is having to keep buying $800 cars because they’re what you can afford, and then having the cars break down on you, because there’s not an $800 car in America that’s worth a damn.

Being poor is hoping the toothache goes away.

Being poor is knowing your kid goes to friends’ houses but never has friends over to yours.

Being poor is going to the restroom before you get in the school lunch line so your friends will be ahead of you and won’t hear you say “I get free lunch” when you get to the cashier.

Being poor is living next to the freeway.

Being poor is coming back to the car with your children in the back seat, clutching…

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Baltimore.

The pattern of discrimination and abuse that has resulted in the death of blacks in recent times is disturbing. This writeup strikes a chord with me.

yesivebeenthere2

I’m not black, and I’ve never been persecuted for my skin color. But. I know what it’s like to endure years of unrelenting abuse at the hands of power.

If you’ve never experienced it, if your mind can’t grasp the scale, then maybe this personal story will help you understand.

My mother beat the shit out of me from 3 to 13. CRUNCH! There’s no suitable onomatopoeia for the sound of an adult’s hand belting a child across the face. There’s no word that describes what it’s like to feel your cartilage ring. She’d backhand me across the face for nothing, out of nowhere. She’d beat me with whatever was handy — spoon, belt, hand — and she’d always scream at me that it was my fault. I made her do it. There was always a reason, always a transgression. “You’re only hurting yourself!” CRACK!

By the time I was…

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Chika Ike’s Celebration of 5 months of #Celibacy

peace-medal-header

I really did not want to comment on this matter. But after pushing the draft of this post aside for three days, I could no longer hold myself from publishing it.

It is no longer news that a few days ago, one of Nollywood’s frontline actresses, Chika Ike took to twitter to publicise her landmark achievement in keeping herself for 5 months. Quoting her,

“I must say it[‘]s not easy being celibate… Five months and still counting…wowI”

While her intentions for the announcement are unclear, I guess it was done out of joy and sheer amazement that she had never been able to keep herself in check for that long since she first tasted the golden apple. On a lighter note, the mischievous part of me thinks she did it for one of two reasons: probably for the Pope to beatify her or for the United Nations to appoint her an Ambassador for Peace Abstinence. But is 5 months of self-denial sufficient a reason to roll out the drums for a national celebration?

About five years ago, my good friend and mentor got married. Shortly after his wedding, he told me with pride how he “verified” that his 28-year old wife was a virgin. They had both waited until their wedding night. I can imagine that his respect for the lady went above the roof. In Africa, it is still a thing of honour, even among educated young folks, when a man meets his wife intact. I know that what a person decides to do with this department of their lives is their own business and the matter remains private until they disclose it.

Anyway, Miss Chika, I admire your courage and praiseworthy decision to stop the games and wait. This is a choice that more people are encouraged to make. (My view from a godly perspective.) However, know that you can only claim success in this goal if you are able to sustain your man’s thirst until after you both say, “I do.”

My intention is not to tell off the beautiful artiste. On the contrary, I wish to encourage girls, boys, ladies and gentlemen to not settle for low standards. Set your sights high. For goodness sake, you can do better than 5 months! You can maintain a clean slate from cradle until the day you say “I do”. And just in case you have been broken (whether you’re male or female); you can still sit up today and say, like Chika,

“I will wait…until I make my marriage vows with Mr Right or Miss Gorgeous.”

Yes you can, God helping you!

Does anyone out there agree with me?


Leke Babayomi blogs at lekebabayomi.wordpress.com

Follow him on twitter @lekebabayomi

Brace yourself to purchase a copy of his soon-to-be-released book: “The Silent Killer.”


Picture credit: http://www.calegion.org/html/korean-peace-medal.html

#Poem: Just write

Writer

Something always draws you away to the place of quiet

There’s a rumbling within that dies

only after you’ve put pen to paper

Every time you see a creative piece

An inner voice screams, “You can do that too!”

Writing gives you that sense of satisfaction

Exceeding what money can provide

Strangely, your goal isn’t attention

You don’t care if lots of people read that piece

You just don’t know why you do what you do

It’s ‘cos you were born to write

It’s ‘cos there’s a message in you

It’s ‘cos God wants to use your pen to change lives

So, don’t quench the fire, just write!


Leke Babayomi blogs at lekebabayomi.wordpress.com

Follow him on twitter @lekebabayomi

Brace yourself to purchase a copy of his soon-to-be-released book: “The Silent Killer.”


Photo: http://venturevillage.eu

I black – a poem

Here’s a funny poem that made me laugh. Enjoy it.

When I born, I black
When I grow up, I black
When I go in Sun, I black
When I scared, I black
When I sick, I black
And when I die, I still black

And you white fellow
When you born, you pink
When you grow up, you white
When you go in sun, you red
When you cold, you blue
When you scared, you yellow
When you sick, you green
And when you die, you gray
And you calling me colored??
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
( This poem was nominated by UN as the best poem of 2006 , Written
by an African Kid)

Thots | Real life issues | Relationships | Faith