Archive for January, 2013

Watch this and be blessed
James 2:26
The very moment you separate body and spirit, you end up with a corpse. Separate faith and works and you get the same thing: a corpse.(MSG)

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(Faith) – (Work) = Corpse

Posted: January 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

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Watch this and be blessed
James 2:26
The very moment you separate body and spirit, you end up with a corpse. Separate faith and works and you get the same thing: a corpse.(MSG)

Dear Generation before Mine

LETTER TO THE GENERATION X

I am a member of the upcoming generation—the one after Generation X that has yet to be given a name.  So far, it appears that most people are rallying behind the idea of calling us Generation Next.  I believe I know why.  The older generations are hoping we will mindlessly assume our place as the “next” in line.  That way, they won’t have to explain why my generation has had to experience so much pain and heartache.  “What heartache?” you say.  “Don’t you know you have grown up in a time of great prosperity?”  Yeah, we know that.  Believe me, it has been drilled into our heads since birth. Unfortunately, the pain and hurt I speak of can’t be reconciled with money.  You have tried for years to buy us happiness, but it is only temporary.  Money isn’t the answer, and it is time for people to begin admitting their guilt for failing my generation.  I will admit that I wasn’t planning to write this.  I was going to tuck it away in some corner of my mind and fall victim to your whole “next” mentality.  But after the massacre in Mubi, Adamawa State in October 2012, I realize that as a member of this generation that kills without remorse, I had a duty to challenge all of my elders to explain why they have allowed things to become so bad.  Let me tell you this:  These questions don’t represent only me but a Whole generation that is struggling to grow up and make sense of this world.  We all have questions; we all want explanations.  People may label us Generation Next, but we are more appropriately Generation “Why?”

“Why did most of you lie when you made the vow of ‘til death do us part’?” “Why do you fool yourselves into believing that divorce really is better for the kids in the long run?”

“Why do so many of you divorced parents spend more time with your new boyfriend or girlfriend than with your own children?” “Why did you ever fall victim to the notion that kids are just as well off being raised by a complete stranger at a day care center than by their own mother or father?”

“Why do you look down on parents who decide to quit work and stay home to raise their children?” “Why does the television do the most talking at family meals?”

“Why is work more important than your own family?”

“Why is money regarded as more important than relationships?” “Why is ‘quality time’ generally no longer than a five- to 10-minute conversation each day?”

“Why do you try to make up for the lack of time you spend with us by giving us more and more material objects that we really don’t need?” “Why does your work (in the form of a cell Phone, laptop computer, etc.), always come with us on vacations?”

“Why have you neglected to teach us values and morals?”

“Why haven’t you lived moral lives that we could model our own after?”

“Why isn’t religion one of the most important words in our household?”

“Why do you play God when it comes to abortion?” “Why don’t you have enough faith in us to teach us abstinence rather than safe sex?”

“Why do you allow us to watch violent movies but expect us to maintain some type of childlike innocence?”

“Why do you allow us to spend unlimited amounts of time on the Internet but still are shocked about our knowledge of how to build bombs?” “Why are you so afraid to tell us ‘no’ sometimes?” “Why is it so hard for you to realize that school shootings, and other violent juvenile behavior, result from a lack of your attention more than anything else?”

Call us Generation Next if you want to, but I think you will be surprised at how we will fail to fit into your neat little category. These questions should, and will, be asked of the generations that have failed us.  You have pursued your selfish desires for years, but now is the time to reap what you have sown.  Some rude awakenings like the Aluu 4 massacre have occurred and probably will continue until you can begin to answer our questions and make the drastic changes to put us, your kids, first.  Time is running out, for in just a few short years, we will be grown, and it will be too late. You might not think we are worth it, but I can guarantee you that the Massacre in Mubi will look like a drop in the bucket compared to what might occur when a neglected Generation “Why” comes to power. Be warned today don’t play the Blame Game but correct your steps and we will follow correctly….

 

Sincerely Yours

Hephzy Freeman

Generation Why

Hephzy Freeman

Hephzy Freeman

 

The Search for rings

Posted: January 23, 2013 in Dairy of a Freeman
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Had a very hectic day today been busy with classes and online deals… today I went shopping for a ring but could find the right one for the right person… still searching tho..

We all know women are very inquisitive but at times their curiosity can be so annoying and sound unreasonable. Here, we have selected a couple of those questions and answers to them with a pinch of sarcasm.
You can add yours.

Annoying Question Nigerian girls Ask
And their Answer!!

1]. Are U a player?
– Yes CHELSEA FC wants to sign me next season *do dey expect U to say yes?

2]. why do U wan’t my Pin??
– want to use it to burst balloon.

3]. Can U die 4 me?
– My name is Ralph not Romeo

4]. My Bis will soon expire, what am i going to do?
– Return the BB to the seller and get a Nokia 3310

5]. If I sleep over in your Place, hope Nothing funny will happen?
– No, trust me we would just perform night vigil

6]. Hope U won’t break my Heart?
– If u don’t put it at the edge of the table…

7]. Can U take me out?
– sorry are U in prison? And is my name Scofield?

8]. Pls come and pick me..
– like say she be beans.

9]. I think i’ve missed my period..
– then ask the class captain for the
next class!!!

10.] Can’t you get a Car?
– Shey your Papa get Car when him dey Higher Institution?

Have a blisful day ahead!
#FREEMANSLOUNGE

The question that kept me up last night:::
“Could the attempted murder of the Emir of Kano have been carried out by the very same people that killed Shuwa, Azazi and Yakowa? Is there a 5th column in this government that
seeks to create a crisis for GEJ, discredit and weaken him and eventually take him out?
Questions, questions, questions?”

what’s your view?

The 10 commandments for single ladies‘ which has basically gone viral online was initially attributed to Tiwa Savage, but the beautiful artiste, who has for long been rumoured to have had a secret wedding with her manager, Tee Billz, denied being the author of the ‘commandments’ in a series of posts on twitter.

She might deny being the author of the piece but the commandments sure sound compelling. Check it out below:

– ‘The 10 commandments for single ladies

1. Don’t be in a hurry to move out of your parents house.
2. Don’t wait for a man before you start living. You can live a fulfilled life as a single woman.
3. Stay away from alcohol. It has killed others and you are not special.
4. Don’t entertain a wrong number call, especially at night. Its not the right way to find a lover.
5. Develop a healthy eating habit. Always take breakfast and avoid sweets.
6. Dress well: impression count. People will judge you by the way you dress even before they talk to you.
7. Don’t use sex as proof of love. Sex is no proof of love, he’ll leave you after the sex.
8. Don’t marry for the money, else you’ll become one of his possessions.
9. Add value to yourself – get a career. Don’t be fooled that a man will solve all your problems.
10. Beauty is not everything. If it is all you have, you’ll lose your place to someone beautiful better more matured and competent than you.

Following a glaring exposure on the deplorable conditions of the dormitories at the Nigerian Police College in Ikeja, Lagos, Channels TV has again revealed another facet of the embarrassing deprivation faced by Police recruits.

The TV crew was privileged to film a meal-time at the training college at Ikeja, Lagos. Cadets were seen struggling with small portions of food. About 50 trainees were seen sharing one head of fish.

the head of Fish that 50 Recruits were to share

the head of Fish that 50 Recruits were to share

The Deputy Commandant of the Police College, Ikeja, Jonah Mavah said that currently, the recruits get N150 daily meal allowance. “N50 per meal is too meager,” he said.

The scenario is not different from those in the six other police colleges in the country. The recruits had abandoned the dining halls and were seen sharing their meals and eating outside.Police Recruits 4

For a healthy young man required to have the energy to survive the intensive training of a law enforcement officer, it is ridiculous to expect him to feed on N150 per day. But unfortunately, this is what our Nigerian police recruits have to manage.

Police Recruits

Police Recruits 2

The Meals before serving

The turning point

I spent the Christmas/New Year holiday of 2011/2012 in the UK and I found that I was buying dresses in size 18. The stay-at-home period during the Occupy Nigeria strike was a time for sober reflection and I gave myself a reality check. As a 28 year old single mum the thought of what I looked and felt like was not only depressing, it was scary. I dusted off my expensive but never really worn 2-year old running shoes and started walking. It all started with walking because at 98 kg, there was not much I could do anyway.
6 tips  for wealth loss
When work resumed, I enrolled into a gym somewhere around my office. I didn’t take it seriously initially, but the turning point for me was when I changed my gym routine to the morning. I met an old trainer from my old gym and several fitness enthusiasts who did not joke with their exercises at all. You see, I have tried to lose weight many times but this is my best success story yet.

First steps

I engaged the personal trainer to walk the walk with me and he did. We started working together sometime in February and same month he insisted he thought I should move my running outdoors. Sincerely, I was quite intimidated by the people who ran outdoors at the gym as you would feel the adrenaline oozing out from them whenever they came back. When they discuss their routes, it was really the height of intimidation. I remember the days we started running, I’d installed Endomondo on my Blackberry which shows the distance covered within the period and I also opted to share the details of my run as a status on the Blackberry, I used to run about 3.5 km in 50 minutes.

Little did I know that real road runners watching me were simply smiling at my so called achievement. I did not know that a few months down the lane, I would be covering a 10 km distance for 60 minutes. I guess this came with consistency over the months. Rome was not built in a day and is still a work in progress.

Tired and exhausted
I got encouragement from everyone around me. They were not all truthful but the encouragement came and it gave me the motivation that I was on the right path. There were times when I looked at it all and said to myself ‘What is the point of all this?’ but the fact that I had to be accountable to other people pushed me.

I remember one fateful day; it was our early morning run around the gym. Unfortunately, we either started late that day- yes we ran as early at 5.30am- or we had short nights, but people were already out pursuing their daily work. I felt the eyes of passersby and as with the popular saying ‘The eyes can tear a piece of cloth’ I saw myself fall down flat on a popular road on the island. It was very embarrassing but instead of laying down there feeling sorry for myself, I simply got up, dusted the dirt off, said thanks to people saying “sorry” and continue to run. Everyone around thought I was crazy; I was very bruised and did not even know it till I finished the run at the gym. That is one experience I would never forget.

In April 2012, I had lost 17kg and coincidentally, it was the month many of my friends chose to get married. I dove into my wardrobe for some dresses I had only fantasied about but could not wear before. I bought myself a very tight size of a body magic girdle which was simply to help me say ‘NO’ to some food and drinks that were passed to my table. I called that period my “Coming Out” season. It was a surprise to a lot of my old friends who had not seen me in ages. Don’t get me wrong, my whole weight loss process was not secret; I knew I was constituting a nuisance on both my Blackberry and Facebook account because I was very eager to share my progress. If you were not close to me you would think I went for a surgery because if I have not mentioned before, I HAVE NEVER EVER BEEN SLIM IN MY LIFE.

Achieving my plateau

So back to the point, after showing off to all my friends, I realized I had reached my plateau and the weight was not going off any more. The good thing for me was I read a lot now and I know what I had to do was to change both my workout routine and diet. So, on day1 of my new ‘out of plateau plan’, I just finished a plate of wheat and some oil free vegetables and decided to go for an evening run. Not only was that a bad plan because my food was yet to digest, I suddenly developed heartburn which made me feel faint. To top it all up, half way through the run, I saw the clouds shift but I thought I could get away with it. I was only half way gone and I couldn’t run back home now. The rains started to pour and I did not know whether to laugh or cry. I simply laughed. I tried to stop some bikes (Okadas) but I guess they thought I was crazy because I kept running. I eventually ran home in the rain. As crazy as it sounds, it was very exciting. It goes with what I am known for though, getting the best out of every situation. Also I learnt from my several supports that food was 80% of the challenge so I had to clean up my diet.

Cleaning up my diet

I researched all over the internet until I could put together a sustainable and realistic Nigerian food diet plan which is what is now known as the ‘FADD Food Plan’.
Gradually, the scale moved and I saw my form change from my usual Orobo self to a curvy young lady and finally to the lepa I have now become.

The weight loss took 10 years off my age. It’s been an exciting few months. I lost all of the weight in 7 months and I have been tried maintaining my weight since then. I lost a total of 25 kg (55lbs).

Weight loss takes a lot of self-discipline. No one can decide for you to lose weight. That decision has to come from the individual, straight from the heart. It is easy to start with giving yourself some self-talk on how ‘you would like to be a better and more active mum/dad to your kids’, ‘how you would like to become a better wife or husband’, ‘how you are craving for a better health’ and so on… but the actual work is in getting the weight off. We all have reasons to give excuses but it you start with the end in mind, you can overcome them. I would never lie to anyone that it is going to be easy, but as I always say, it is most definitely worth it.

6 tips for weight loss

• Write down the reasons you want to lose weight; your most important reason is for YOURSELF because you would get a lot of criticisms along the way. You doing it for yourself would keep you going at those times.

• Start by searching for and choosing weight loss mentors; those that have towed the same path and have achieved a huge success. Mine was Jenifer Hudson, Tee Morgan and I really wanted Michelle Obama’s arm- and I think I got it. Put up their pictures on your fridge at home, or by your desk at the office, on your phone, ipad etc. Start the process with the end in mind.

• Think about it as a lifestyle change and simply embrace it; calling it a diet simply means you would end it someday. For sustainability, see it as a lifestyle overhaul that has come to stay. Even after you have lost all of the weight, you would be able to get rid of it for good on your own.

• Get involved in a weight loss support system: if you do not find one, start one yourself. Identify 2 or 3 of your friends who want to lose weight or simply keep fit. You would all motivate yourselves. Trust me, it works wonders. That was the ‘X factor’ for me.

• Be self-motivated: even with all the support you get from others, YOU are still the one that would get up and do the exercises, push yourself to the extreme, establish that there are NO BOUNDARIES, stop yourself from eating that big bowl of rice, cookies or ice-cream. It all comes down to your discipline and motivation.

• Finally, involve God all the way: weight loss can be very spiritual – at least to me. A lot of times, I break down with no will to go on or I break down in strength, I always search for spiritual motivations to carry on.

Now I go around talking and mentoring people on weight loss and healthy living through my blog http://www.wotugotaloose.wordpress.com, FADD bi-monthly fitness parties, our runners club and most especially through my newly founded wellness consultancy company FADD- Fitness Addict. I believe this would also help me to stay focused and sustain this new lifestyle of mine.

As a child I enjoyed going to church. Back then, churches were big on moral education. Jesus was projected as the ultimate exemplar of spiritual and moral excellence. Whenever we face a moral dilemma we were told to simply ask ourselves this question: What would Jesus do if He was in our situation? The right answer to this question spells the right thing to do. Quite evidently this lasting moral lesson I received as a child has inspired the title of this piece.

As an attempt to sidestep the pitfalls of sweeping generalization, the title of this piece is couched to tacitly suggest, there is an ideal type of “Nigerian pastor”. However, this ideal type is possibly suffused with some trite notions. Since, it highlights subjective features and impressions. If it is, there is no cause for alarm. Facts are inherent in cliched perspectives. Inherited ideas are not bad, if they are rooted in observable reality, useful for social reconstruction and non-discriminatory. Perception is still a valid way of gleaning knowledge.

A quick look at Jesus and the Nigerian Pastor is a study in contrast. It elicits paradigm-shattering dissonance. Jesus is the epitome of selflessness. Sacrificial love was the signature of His services to God, humanity, state and society. Similarly, it was the grand motif of his teachings. But the converse is true of the Nigerian Pastor. The governing maxim of his ministerial endeavors is inspired by the capitalists checklist: What is in it for me? This is making the Nigerian pastor a well-known avatar of greed. Around the globe, those who want to take lessons in the idiocy of profligate highlife are turning their attention to him. To the Nigerian Pastor, self is supreme. God is secondary. Pleasure is the essence of life. People are doormats. Or, they are seen as mere expendable launch pads to the stratosphere of fame and fortune.

If Jesus was a Nigerian Pastor, He would be a servant of God to the people. His wholehearted commitment to alleviating the atrocious living and working conditions of the poor would be a gospel anti-poverty agencies would draw inspiration from. His passionate pursuit of the transcendent would not blindfold Him to the appalling material misery of those around Him. He would not widen the socio-economic gap between the haves and the have-nots.

He would not be known for setting financial targets? for His church members, a practice that has compromised the faith and purity of many. Of what good is it for a young poor lady to sell her body in order to meet such  set targets? Unlike the boastful, wasteful hedonistic Nigerian pastor, He would have embodied Puritan ethics, which is a stimulus for capital accumulation for enterprise building. He would have raised frontline entrepreneurs by freely and gladly sharing the business sense He acquired as a carpenter par excellence.

If Jesus was a Nigerian Pastor, he would not be a tag-along denizen of Aso Rock. He would make the annexation of His ministry to the structures of political power impossible. Certainly, now and then, He would dine and wine with politicians. Whenever there is a legitimate reason, He would likely visit the seats of political power. However, He would maintain a dignified distance from them. So that He can speak truth to power with the unmistakable voice of authority. Painfully, the Nigerian pastor is increasingly becoming voiceless. He is seen in political arenas, but not heard. His shameless backslapping gestures have eroded his moral authority to be a voice of truth to power.

If Jesus was a Nigerian Pastor, He would not promote the baseless fatality that comes with hatred of difference. There is hardly anything that assaults the sublime nature of prayer like making it an expression of homicidal rage. In fact, the God-centric life that Jesus models is hardly enemy-conscious. One truth the Nigerian pastor seems not to grasp is that if prayer is fear-inspired, not God-centred and love-based, it is prone to become a tool of the devil.

If Jesus was a Nigerian Pastor, He would not organise programmes in places that will impede vehicular movement. He knows there is a nexus between the good life and trouble-free movement. Fixing bad roads, fighting poverty, beautifying the environment would have been on His agenda for socio-economic development. Unlike the Nigerian pastor, Jesus would not build a multi-billion naira ultra-modern mega-church in a squalid environment with unmotorable roads. He would do his best to develop the socio-economic infrastructure in His domain of influence for the benefit of all.

If Jesus was a Nigerian Pastor, He would not shutdown churches that are not commercially viable. His ministries would not be confined to cities. He will gladly pastor in villages like Karangiya in Sokoto, Anong in Cross River. The Nigerian Pastor needs to jettison the illusion that God dwells only in cities. And its corollary, you can’t have a thriving church outside Lagos, Abuja, Warri, Port Harcourt, Kaduna, etc.

Well, if to the Nigerian Pastor ministry is a gravy train, a means to own a private jet; it will be easier for pigs to fly than for his expectations to come through in a village church. But the truth is, if the Nigerian Pastor is truly like Jesus, geographical location will not debar the growth and influence of his ministry. Didn’t the city dwellers go to the wilderness to hear John the Baptist?

Let me assume I am in a position to advise the Nigerian Pastor on how to truly create heaven on earth.

Dear Pastor, please model Christ. Endeavour to be selfless. Stop conveying the impression that you are a parasitic opportunist. Build sanctuaries of care for the vulnerable. Pay attention to the real needs of the world. Poverty abounds, join the fight to alleviate it. Step out of your grand soapbox, pickup your workbag and hit the street. Without cameras, please.