Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Staying Close To God At University

Hello everyone,

I hope you are all well and having a great year so far. Today, I will be sharing with you something that has been on my heart for a long time now. I already made a video about it a few months ago so this blog post will be complementing that video. I am going to be sharing some of my tips for staying close to God while you are at university. These tips are entirely based on my personal experience and hopefully it would be helpful for someone.

Make the right friends:
The very first piece of advice I would give is to make the right friends. Before I came to university, I had prayed a lot about making and finding Christian friends. I wanted to make Christian friends because I wanted to be around people who I could talk about God with. I wanted to be around people who were going to help me draw closer to God and to help me in my Christian journey. This meant that I had to make conscious decisions to only spend time with the right people. It took me a while to find my "crowd" but I am glad I didn't just go with the flow. The company we keep can make such a huge impact on how we act and behave. Relationships can either influence us positively or negatively. I am grateful for all the friends I have now and it is just goes to show that God indeed cares about the things that we might think are simple and insignificant. I believe God worked it out in the end and placed the right people in my life.

Join a group with like minded people:
The next piece of advice I would give is to be actively involved in your university's student fellowship. If your university has a Christian union you can get involved with, then please do. Go to your Christian union meetings, talk to people at the CU and attend the events. Student fellowships can be a great chance for you to relate with people who are going through the same things as you. It is also a great chance to share testimonies and encourage each other as well as reach out to other students at the university and tell them about Christ. It gets you really active in doing the things of God so it would be a really great thing to be a part of.

Find a church:
Another important thing I would advise is to be part of a local church. It is very easy for students to go to university and not be part of a church. The benefits of going to church are endless. Your student fellowship should not replace church for you. Church is a place where you will find more spiritually mature Christians and you can find a mentor who will be there to pray with you and also guide you if you need any advice. Joining a church and going regularly is something I would greatly encourage.

Personal Time:
One other thing that would be really good to do is to keep up with your personal devotions and Bible study. This will require a lot of discipline and it can be hard to keep up especially if you have too much to do for university. There are a lot of things you can implement to help you be more consistent and I will share that in another blog post. However, I would say that spending time in God's presence will give you reassurance, remind you of God's love and give you His peace and rest when you feel stressed out and worried about university.

I hope these tips helped. If you do have any questions, please do leave a comment. Below is a video about this subject and you can watch if you want to. 

Let me know what your tips are for staying close to God at university. I would love to know.
Thank you so much for reading.
Hope you have a lovely day.
God bless :)

Thursday, 4 January 2018

Natural Hair Journey #5: 2.5 Years Post Relaxer

Hello lovely people,

I realised today that it has been about a year since I last gave an update about my natural hair so I thought I'd give you all a little update about my journey. Some of you may already know that in June 2015, I decided to stop relaxing my hair and went on a transitioning journey. The plan was to grow out my natural hair for 2 years and then cut off the relaxed ends. I have to say that I stuck to the plan and did not big chop until back in June 2017. However, when it was time for me to big chop, my relaxed hair had broken off so much that I ended up just doing a trim. I was already pretty much natural at this point.

The big smile on my face shows how much I look forward to wash days and playing around with my hair

The two years of growing my natural hair out were very challenging yet rewarding. They taught me a lot of patience especially when it came to detangling, washing and deep conditioning my hair. They also taught me to be more creative with hair styles. I really love versatility and so being able to wear my natural hair in so many different styles suits me really well. Every time I have to wear protective styles, I find myself missing my hair and wanting to wear it out again. I really do enjoy exploring it and playing around with my kinky coils. At the moment, I would say that when fully stretched, my hair goes all the way down to about armpit length. My goal is to be able to grow it down to bra-strap length or mid-back. This is the beginning of the year and I have so much hope. I can't wait to see how much it is going to grow this year. Below are a few of my favourite hair styles from 2017.

Two puffs and twisted bangs

Twisted side swept bangs and high puff

Two flat twits and two puffs

Are you on a hair journey to healthier hair?
Are you transitioning from relaxed hair to natural hair?
Are you transitioning from heat damaged hair to healthier hair?
Let me know in the comments below how it is going for you.
Thank you so much for reading.
Have a lovely day.
God bless :)

Sunday, 31 December 2017

December In Review + What God Taught Me In 2017

Fashion Show 2017/ I presented my research at my university's research day/ Writing my dissertation/ I had the flu jab for the first time/ I went to Winter Wonderland with my friends/ It snowed/ Christmas meal with my friends/ At Enish Nigerian restaurant in London with friends/ Christmas tree/ I finished editing my book.

I cannot believe it is the end of 2017 guys. I whipped out my journal yesterday and I was just flipping through and looking at some entries and I realised just how much God has been faithful to me this year. Even though the year has been filled with so much hurt. tears and disappointments, it has also been filled with a lot of joy, blessings and growth. I choose joy today even as I look back and talk about all the wonderful things God has done for me this year.

1. On the first of January 2017, I started writing a book and since then, I have been working on many different projects. 2017 was the year that God showed me that He alone has the ability to qualify me. 2017 was the year that God showed me that He has the ability to use my work for His glory.

2. In February, I wrote my first exams for second year and when the results came out in March, I was very pleasantly surprised. God did it for me in the most magnificient way.

3. In April 2017, I started working on my poetry devotional called "Outpourings of a Beloved Heart" and I did Camp Nanowrimo where I wrote 10,000 words of this book and won. 

4. In June 2017, I finished my second year of university with a first class. All glory to God alone.

5. In July 2017, I finished the first draft of my poetry devotional which was such an amazing feeling.

5. In July-August 2017, I did a summer vacation studentship at my university in London where I worked in the research lab carrying out research on pre-eclampsia. 

6. In September 2017, I started my third year of Biomedical Science working on a project I am very interested in and with a supervisor I love working with. I have also been able to achieve so many amazing results which will hopefully be published in future.

7. In November 2017, I took part in Operation Christmas Child again this year. You can watch my video down below.

8. In December 2017, I had the opportunity to present my research at my university's research day. It was such a privilege to get to do that. It was an amazing experience and I am very grateful to God for it.

9. Also in December 2017, I finished writing my book "Outpourings of A Beloved Heart" and I have now ordered a proof copy of the book. It has been such an amazing writing journey and I cannot wait to share this book with you all in the new year. I made a video talking about what God has taught me in 2017 and you can watch it below.

10. In 2017, God gave me the ability to speak and encourage others through my blog. YouTube channel and also through my writing. I had never thought I was qualified enough to do work for Him but God showed me that His love alone has qualified me. Here are a few of my favourite videos from the channel.

Life is hard but God is good

Being a single Christian

Is your heart overwhelmed? Be encouraged in the Lord

All about self worth. Where does your value lie?

How has your 2017 been guys? 
Please do let me know in the comments below.
I love you all and I hope to see you all in the new year.
I pray that God continues to bless and keep you.

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

November In Review (2017)

My new crochet project/ Autumn leaves/ Home for the weekend. Food for an event we we were hosting at our house./ I took part in Operation Christmas Child again this year./ Flyer for our Christian Union's events week/ At one of the talks for our events week titled "What kind of God sends sincere people to hell?",

Favourrite Quote
"The same wind blows on us all; the winds of disaster, opportunity and change. Therefore, it is not the blowing of the wind, but the setting of the sails that will determine our direction in life."
-Jim Rohn

Research Project Update:
My research project is still going well so far. I have been able to collect some significant results like i mentioned in the last update and I am very grateful to God for that. I still spend most of my time in the lab and it is very time consuming but I will hopefully be able to finish lab work this semester. If that goes well, I will be able to spend the Christmas break focusing on my in- course assessments and actually writing  my dissertation.

Module Update:
I am still enjoying my science of reproduction module. I am now very behind on my lecture notes because I haven't been able to manage my time very well in terms of dealing with social activities and work. I am hoping that when things become less crazy then I will be able to catch up on my notes. I started my 3000 word essay which is due in January but I have only gotten as far as writing the introduction which is about 300 words. I am hoping to finish writing it before I go home for the Christmas holidays.

Book Writing Update:
I kind of took part in NanoWrimo this month. My aim for taking part was not to actually write 50,000 words but it was a way to motivate me to work on my book. I am still editing my poetry devotional which I am hoping to publish next year. I have now edited 5 parts out of 7 and I am hoping to finish editing the other two by the end of the year so I can order a proof copy from Createspace. I shall let you all know how that goes during my next update.

Fashion Show (Charity Dance Show Case):
I also took part in my university's charity dance showcase where I was given the opportunity to choreograph the African dance again this year. It was such an amazing experience as it has always been. I have been  taking part in these shows since my first year at university and it has been an amazing journey. I have grown so much as a dancer and I thank God for that.

Christian Union Events Week:
One of my highlights for this month of November was definitely the Christian Union's Events week. Every year at my university, the Christian Union hosts a full week of events where the gospel of Jesus is shared. We had lunch time talks where we gave out free lunch to students at the university and also a talk. We also had evening events which included a Ceilidh, a meal with one of our lecturers and many more. I was really encouraged at the end of this week because we saw God's hand move in our midst. We saw that God is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we could ever ask or think. God alone is able to draw people to Himself and He does work in ways in which we cannot understand. So I was greatly reminded of God's power that week which really encouraged me in my own personal walk.

Song of the month
 Even if by MercyMe 
 "I know You're able and I know You can
Save through the fire with Your might hand
But even if You don't, my hope is You alone."

I hope you had a wonderful month of November and I pray our good Lord continues to keep you in these last days of the year 2017.
Thank you so much for reading.
Have a lovely day and God bless. 

Sunday, 12 November 2017

My Inspiration: Our God Is Mighty To Save

Hello everyone,

Today, I wanted to quickly share with you this passage of scripture that God used to encourage me a few days ago. It was an early start for me on Friday morning and I was up at 6 a.m ready to start a new day. Just before I did my morning Bible study, I decided to check my phone and I had received an email overnight. I had been dreading receiving this email for weeks but it was finally here. I hesitated to open it because I did not want to face the very thing I did not want to see. After going back and forth for about 5-10 minutes I finally gathered the courage to open this email and there it was. One of my fears was staring at me right in the face.

At that very moment, I did not know what to think anymore. I did not know what to do. I did not know what to feel. I was not sad but I was not happy either. I just tried to make sense of what I had just seen but I didn't know what to do next. It was at this moment that I picked up my journal and opened it. Just as I was about to open up my Bible, my eye caught the scripture at the bottom of my journal page and it read,

"If you want to know what God wants you to do, ask Him and He will gladly tell you."
James 1:5

This was the second time this scripture had come to me at such a troubling time and yes, I knew at that moment God was reminding me about something. So I went into God's word and tried to seek answers. All I could ask at that time was to give me a reason to keep going. I just love the fact that God sends the most encouraging scriptures my way whenever I feel down and the one He sent me this time was from Zephaniah.

"The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in His love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing."

Zephaniah 3:17

The one voice I heard over and over and over again said to me "Trust me". 
So many times I listened intently and it still said "Just trust me".
So just like I was encouraged that day, I am here to pass this message on to you too.
If you are feeling discouraged or if you are looking for an extra reason to keep going,
I can only give you one reason that is true. Keep going because God is still in control. Just trust Him.
His name is Jehovah. He is the mighty warrior and He is mighty to save.
He has not forgotten about you.
He loves you.

Hope this encourages you.
Thanks for reading.
Have a lovely day.
God bless :)

Sunday, 5 November 2017

October In Review (2017)

Making vegetable couscous for grub crawl/ Chicken for grub crawl/ International welcome dinner/ Giving out doughnuts at student union disco/ I made fajitas/ Food at the Afro-Caribbean soceity meet and greet/ Avocado, omelette and baked beans on toast :)/ Free lunch from our university's new coffee shop/ Free hot chocolate from my university's new coffee shop. 

Science of reproduction module lecture about ultrasounds/ Carrying out an experiment in the lab/ I finished editing the first part of my book.

Favourite Quote Of The Month
"Everything that God allows to come our way is always with a purpose. He uses even the greatest error and deepest pain to mold us into a better person"

End Of Freshers Week And Grub Crawl
Freshers fortnight finished with the Grub Crawl which is was event organised by the Christian Union. The Grub Crawl was an alternative to the student union's Pub Crawl. Instead of going from one pub to another drinking, the Grub Crawl involved going from house to house eating food. Food and desserts were all provided by students from the Christian Union. It was a really successful event and it gave us an opportunity to meet a lot of freshers. The food was very good too :)

Research Project Update
It has been well over a month now since I started my laboratory based research project. Overall, I would have to say I am really enjoying it so far. Everything seems to be going well and I have managed to get some really good results which I am going to write about in my dissertation. It is a lot of hard work though and it takes up a lot of time. I have to be in the lab every day during the week and this doesn't give me enough time to focus on other things like going through my lecture notes. The one thing that comforts me is that my research project is worth more than everything else this year so I really hope and pray that it all pays off in the end. I have started writing the introduction for my dissertation which is a good thing.

Module Update
I am really enjoying my science of reproduction module. We are over half way done with the module now and lectures are piling up. I decided to hand write all my notes this year because I find it helps me organise everything I need to know including notes from extra reading. I am a few lectures behind but it could be worse to be honest. We also have a 3000 word essay to write which is due in January but I'd like to try and write it before the Christmas holidays. I did another DITL video showing a bit of what I do in the laboratory and you can watch that below if you are interested.

Book Writing Update
Writing is also kind of going well. I have finished editing 2 out 7 parts. I would like to finish editing by the end of the year but I guess I'll see how that goes. I just have so much university work to do that I haven't had the time to just properly edit. I am trying not to stress too much about it though. I know that eventually, some day, the book will be ready for the world to see. I'll just take it one step at a time. I don't want to rush it. I want to be able to give it my 100% attention and do it well.

Song Of The Month
I really love this song by Dr Tumi called "You Are My Rest". It is so comforting to know that we can always find rest in Jesus.

Hope you are all well.
Please do let me now what you have been up to recently.
Have a lovely day.
God bless :)

Sunday, 22 October 2017

My Inspiration: He Gives Rest For Our Souls

Hello everyone,

Today, I thought I'd quickly share with you two bible verses that encouraged me this week. I went for an event called  "Festival of Life" on Friday night and the theme for that event was "Rest". The two passages of scripture that really stuck out to me were Exodus 33:14 and Matthew 11:28.

When you feel tired and weary,
When the load you carry feels too heavy to bear,
When the storms of life leave you feeling lifeless,
When the pain crushes you from every side,
When the worries and cares of life press in on you,
When the enemy comes to take away your faith and your hope,
Remember to cast all your anxieties on Jesus.
Give Him your burden.
Lay it all down at the altar.
His presence is with you.
He will give you rest.

Have a lovely day.
God bless :)

Sunday, 1 October 2017

September In Review (2017)

Hello everyone,

Hope you are all doing well. I realised that I haven't had the time to write my weekly reviews so I have decided to do monthly reviews for now until I can get back to my normal routine. So in today's post, I will be sharing with you what I got up to in the month of September.

My friend went to Paris and gave me this gift when she got back/ Night in with my friends. We cooked jollof rice and we had cake as well. It was such a lovely time. I love my friends :)./ I made some mushroom stir fry :)/ Dinner with the rest of the CU committee at a curry house. The food was really good./ My science of reproduction module handbook :)

My favourite quote of the month
"Life Is Hard But God Is Good"

Two weeks of rest at home
If you read my last post, you would know that I spent July and August doing a summer vacation studentship. I worked in the research lab for 8 weeks and it was such a brilliant experience for me. My studentship ended on the 25th of August so I went back home to spend the remaining 2 weeks with my family. This was the first summer I had ever spent away from my family and though it was hard, I did survive. The experience taught me a lot of things which I will hopefully be sharing in the near future. My family was also in the process of moving house this summer but we have settled in the new house now. I love our new house because we finally have a garden and even a conservatory. The house is really beautiful and I am very grateful to God for helping us find it.

Starting university with lectures

I came back to uni on the 10th of September but we didn't start lectures until the 18th. I have now started the final year of my biomedical science degree. I can't believe I am nearing the end now. It is not going to be easy but I am trusting that with God, it will be worth it. I have one module this Semester which is the Science of Reproduction module and so I only have lectures Monday and Tuesday afternoons.  I did a vlog of my first day as a third year Biomed and you can find that below.

Start of research project

I also started my research project this semester. My research proposal is due in tomorrow and I have already been doing solid laboratory work for 2 weeks now. The fact that I worked over the summer has really helped build my confidence and I am grateful that I had that opportunity. It definitely has made things a lot easier for me. I have also started writing my dissertation so everything is going well so far.

First part of freshers fortnight

It has been really nice welcoming the freshers this year. I have been able to meet a lot of amazing people so far and the whole experience has just made me realise how far I have come. I remember when I was a fresher. 2 years have gone by so quickly, it's mind blowing. I am part of the Christian Union committee this year and we have been working to organise events to welcome the freshers. We started off by putting washing up liquid in each flat at the halls of residence for the freshers. Then we also went to the meet and greet event where we met and spoke to a lot of the freshers. At our fresher's fair, we had over 60 people sign up to join the CU which was amazing and our first CU gathering was packed. All glory to God. We have also been giving out donuts after every disco at university and we will continue to do that until the end of freshers fortnight- God willing :)

Song of the month
I thought I'd share my new favourite song "Clear The Stage" by Jimmy Needham. 
I love this song because it teaches a lot about what true worship is about. Worship is more than just singing songs to God but is all about living a life of submission to Him. I hope the song blesses you too :)

I can't believe it is October already. I hope you all have a blessed month. I will try to put a post up every week. I have a lot of posts just sitting in my draft folder and because third year is crazy busy, I haven't been able to post these. I am sure they will all come out eventually so I want to say a massive thank you to anyone who reads these posts. I love you guys so much.
Thanks for reading.
Have a lovely day.
God bless :)

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Our Hope of Glory (For Suicide Prevention Week)

Hello everyone,

So I found out that this past week was Suicide Prevention Week in the US and the very lovely Elissa who blogs over at Letters To Jayna was doing a cool series on her blog about this. She basically got other bloggers each write a post in support of suicide prevention. I had a read of some of these posts and I thought it was such a brilliant way to remind ourselves about some of the things that actually matter. Jessica also wrote an amazing post about this here and I think you guys should definitely read it too. Although this is the very end of the week, I thought I'd join the part too and share my thoughts.

Unlike Elissa, I have never really lost anyone to suicide but I thought it was sad to hear about Elissa losing her friend about a year ago. It only goes to show that some of these issues that we can sometimes overlook like mental health are in fact real and that there are a lot of people out there who are actually struggling. So if there is any one going through rough times right now or anyone who feels they are in a hopeless situation, hopefully this would be one of the many posts that would encourage you to hold on to God who is our hope of glory.

He is not done with you yet
- The fact that you are still alive and still breathing means there is still hope. God is not done with you yet. He still has a purpose for you. He still wants to use you for His glory so please hold on because there is still hope.

He is bigger than the troubles you face
-God is bigger than those those troubles you are facing. You see those mountains that are before you right now? Yeah he can turn those into pebbles in the blink of an eye. He can calm your storms because the wind and waves obey His voice. He is bigger than all those negative thoughts that keep you awake at night so hold on because there is still hope.

He can heal your heart 
-Jesus understands. He has been there too. He has felt pain too. He knows what you are going through and He is the only one who can heal your heart. So draw near to Him even during this rough time. No matter how broken you think you are, He can mend you. No matter how far you think you have fallen, He can lift you up again. Jesus is the answer so hold on to Him because He gives hope.

He loves you
-Jesus loves you. Yes, even the messy state you might be in.You may not be feeling that right now but it is true. He has always loved you and He will never stop loving you. You are very special to Him. He looks upon you with so much love that He keeps you safe in hollow of His hands. Look to Him for strength and let Him fill your heart with His love. Hold on to Him because He gives hope.

Now that you know these truths, don't forget to pass it on to others. Tell someone else about God's love for them. And most importantly, SHOW God's love to others. Ask how your friends are doing, send them a text to let them know you care and that God cares too. Appreciate the friends and family you have around you and always remember them in your prayers. Pray to God for strength to keep going because our strength comes from Him alone. If only we knew how much of a difference these little things made to others, then we would want to do it more often.
You and I matter to Him.
We are all loved by Him.
So take heart my dear.
There is still hope.
You are loved and cared for.

Thanks for reading
Have a lovely day.
God bless :)

"Weeping may endure for a night,
 But joy comes in the morning."
                                       Psalm 30:5b

Sunday, 10 September 2017

My Inspiration: The Couple I Met On The Night Tube

*** Hello everyone. So I was reading some of my old blog posts the other day and I realised that when I first started this blog, I used to write a lot about my thoughts that came from the events I observed in my life. I used to write about how these events somehow pointed me to God or how they taught me something about myself. The past couple of months have been really busy for me and this means I haven't been able to put in as much time into blogging as I would love to. However, I did mention in my previous post that I really do miss blogging and I would like to diversify my content a little bit more. So I am going to be going back to sharing these thoughts and reflections. Today's one is about a couple I saw when I was on the night tube a few days ago.***

I sat across the tube from them.
She was fast asleep.
Her head resting on his shoulder
And his head resting on her head.
Her arms were wrapped around his left arm for support
And his hand rested on her left thigh to let her know he was there.
He looked down and smiled at her as she snored softly.
I bet he thought she looked innocent in her sleep.
I bet he wondered if she was dreaming about him.
I bet in his mind he thought " She's my girl. I'm her man. I protect her. She is safe with me."
He didn't have to say these words.
It was written all over his body language.
I bet she knew she had a love that kept her safe.
What else could one possibly wish for right?

Oh but then 5 minutes went by,
And he fell asleep too.
The one who was supposed to keep watch
And to make sure they didn't miss their stop.
He was now asleep too.
Who then was going to keep watch over them?

I find joy in seeing moments like this
To see that we can take pride in being there for each other.
To see that we can take up the responsibility of looking out for each other.
To see that we can be able to rely and comfort each other.
To see that we can try to keep watch too.
But we only watch in vain if we watch without the Lord.
Our Lord who watches over the city.
He neither slumbers nor sleeps.
And He keeps us away from harm.
I find joy in knowing that His love keeps me safe.

When I got off the tube,
I couldn't help but hope in my heart
That this couple didn't miss their stop.

 "Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain."
Psalm 127:1