Life has really showed every one of us different things, different lessons at different phases. There are days we can’t stop tearing and other days we find it hard to hold back the smiles. There are days when all we ask are questions and there are other days when it seems we have all the answers. There are days we can’t stop complaining because we feel so lost and unfulfilled and other days we see things beyond our comprehension and then we can’t stop giving thanks. However, if we are diligent and observant, we will realize that life won’t always be perfect but a grateful heart will thrive even in the mist of imperfections.
Jide was a young man born in the western part of Nigeria, he was very intelligent and hardworking. He had always dreamed of becoming a medical doctor and he thought his dreams had come true when he passed his school certificate exams in flying colours. His parents were so proud of him, when he cleared all other exams that would lead him to study medicine but to everyone’s surprise Jide was not offered medicine at his choice University. Instead of Medicine, he was offered Biochemistry. His father did all he could, he made lots of phone calls to his friends who he thought could help but all to no avail. Then his father encouraged him to go for the course in the hope that he would cross over to medicine in his second year.
Jide went in good faith and did all he could, he studied so hard but unfortunately for him (so he thought), he was not allowed to cross to medicine. He hated life so much so, that he questioned the existence of God. However, his parents were able encouraged him to trust in God’s purpose for his life and told him to be grateful for what he has. Jide felt they were only trying to cheer him up and rather than being grateful he was hateful. Things got worse for him, he had carryovers in few compulsory courses and this effectively killed any hope he had of crossing to study Medicine.
He decided to share the bad news with his parents hoping they would console him as usual but he was surprised when his father called him ‘good for nothing’ and a failure. He felt like dying, he just could not understand how his loving parents would suddenly change. He concluded that instant that if there is a God, then that God must really hate him. He then made up his mind that he was on his own and has to give it all he has got if he wants to make head way in life.
By his fourth year in the university, he was done with his carryovers and he was much better in his academics. One day, he decided to visit his close friend (the smartest of them back in secondary school days) who was studying medicine. When he got to his hostel, he met him crying, he inquired what the issue was, his friend told him, he had failed his Incourse exams and he has been dropped to Biochemistry and was to now start again from year two. Furthermore, he does not know how to tell his parents and his friend concluded by saying,“ I wish I had your life, I wish I was also given biochemistry from the beginning”. These words shook Jide to the spine.
That second, Jide realized how ungrateful he has been. He realized his mess was really a blessing. He finally understood that because God knows our inadequacies he sometimes take us through the wilderness so that we can discover the Joshua and Caleb in us. Jide could only imagine what his friend was going through and now in his heart he was grateful for what he has. He now saw that he wasn’t really prepared for the challenges of studying medicine, he was only eager to study the course because he wanted to measure up to his friend and satisfy the ego of his parents. Jide learned the real lesson of life, that if one appreciates what one has, one would eventually have what one desires.
A lot of us wake up in the morning wishing we had better lives, better relationship, better friends even better parents but the funny thing is there are lots people who look at us and pray and wish they had a life like ours. Most people are not satisfied and this won’t likely change till eternity comes. It is not all about the present pain, tribulations or challenges but there is a need to be grateful for the little things we have.
“A man who appreciates little things will definitely earn bigger things -Onome”
Walking on the street every day I see a lot of homeless people, I see kids who have no hope of becoming something great tomorrow, I see kids who are hungry but yet they still move on with their lives hoping that maybe someday a miracle will happen, these people have not given up on life, and I believe you and I who have almost everything should learn from them. Therefore, I charge you to look beyond the pains, the trauma and the disappointments, and choose to focus on the positives while being grateful for every little thing you have; the air we breathe, the alarm that wakes us, the family we have, the friends that keeps us company, the life that gives us hope and the miracles we see everyday.
“When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears – Tony Robbins”
The fact that we are breathing is a blessing; there is always something for everyone to be grateful for and in faith we should be thankful for things that we do not have yet. For if we choose the path of gratitude the rest of our life will be testimonies to God’s blessings.
By Omodara Oluwabunmi Onome