​Remember your beginnings. It will guide you to conquering your end.

Remember how good God has been. Remember how faithful He was when you couldn’t turn to anyone else. Like that time when you didn’t know how you were going to pay for college that year, or how you would find happiness again after a breakup or how he healed your heart when it was broken. Do not forget how you felt useless, worthless, less than, empty, crazy, embarrassed, ashamed and absolutely depressed. How no one else had any idea what you were actually going through, but God knew, and He was patient. He waited until you were ready to open up and deal with that heartache.

Remember all of the holes He dug you out of. Despair, unforgiveness, loneliness, and abandonment. He not only took you out, but He filled every hole and made you stronger.

Remember His surprises. That time that you didn’t even pray for it, but God sent someone to give you exactly what you said in your head that you wanted.

Remember worshipping Him. How you didn’t even expect worship to be that amazing, yet it ended up being the greatest worship session ever. How simply not saying a word but just knowing He was there ended up being everything you needed and more.

Remember when He said your name. When you heard His voice audibly and it absolutely shook your bones and satisfied your soul entirely.

The moment that you prayed and God unexpectedly responded.

Bring back to mind when that person walked out on you, but God never did. Even when you ‘deserved’ it.

The times that God had every reason to be mad at you, but He wasn’t? Like when you abandoned Him for your friends, or for a relationship?

Remember that He is your hero, that He has NEVER failed you and He never will.

He has been your protector. He protected your heart, your mind, your body, your family members and friends, your finances and so much more. He has protected you from making the choices that you knew were wrong. From those wrong turns and toxic relationships that would have left you empty.

He has hidden you from the eyes of the enemy yet has made you a powerful warrior, fearless, perseverant, long-suffering, unrelenting and brave. He has made you an all-time VICTOR by eternally defeating the enemy.

Most importantly, remember the foundation.

Jesus Christ was God but came down as a man, just like you. Perfect and blameless, yet He took up your sin and the sins of this world. He died with your sins and rose with your victory. He released you from the chains of this world and gave you freedom and eternal life in Heaven. He has made peace in the midst of your chaos. Freedom when all you felt was powerlessness. Identity when no one else accepted you or made you feel seen, heard or known. He has been your refuge, your hiding place, your shield in time of pain and your sword in time of war. He exchanged your weakness for His strength, your sickness for His health, your fears for His courage.

So, remember. Simply remember.

To hold on. To not walk away even if it looks like life would be easier without Him. You always know He’s worth it. This that you are feeling is a temporary trial. It is a momentary thought that is tricking you into dropping all the progress you’ve made and the mountains you have conquered.

God is ready and waiting for you to decide that yes, this too, shall pass. Decide that you will not walk away from this covenant, this life, these promises or this wonderful God.

Isaiah 46:9 “Remember the former things long past, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is no one like Me.”

Remember your beginnings. It will guide you to conquering your end.

Advertisements

​I Wanted A Perfect Life, But God Told Me ‘No

God said ‘NO’. I wanted a road without humps and edges, just a smooth and straight one, but God said ‘no’. He set a rocky road full of obstacles, humps, muds, missing pieces and sharp edges. I asked why, but I received no reply.

I wanted a high paying job without giving out any effort. I asked for it, but God said ‘no’. He let me struggle. I asked why, but I received no reply.

I wanted someone to be my partner, to be my other half, but God said ‘no’. He let her  love someone else. I asked why, I received no reply. God said ‘no’, but I wanted to push it through. I let my emotions control me more than I control them. And so I was broken.

I was broken and I thought God didn’t want me to be happy. I thought God wanted me to suffer. I cried. And I prayed. I asked why. Then I received a hug from heaven as I slept. A peaceful whisper and a slow melody. ‘God loves me’, I said. I could feel it.

Struggles come and you might doubt yourself. But going on and moving forward, you’d realize His ‘NO’s’ are never a rejection. It is either a redirection of your path or reassessment of your faith. God always want you safe and sound, but He also wants you strong and bright. He didn’t give you a rough road to suffer, he gave it so you could be trained.

He wants you fast enough to dodge thee rocks that life will throw you. He wants you to learn. Learn from your experiences, and from your own mistakes. He will allow you be wrong in order to know what is right. He will show you life in black and white, so you can appreciate the colors of the rainbow.

He wants you to do things on your own to realize that you are more than what you think you are. And when you are ready, God will know exactly when you are. The bottom line is that, God never says NO for no reason. It’s just NOT THIS or NOT NOW. Trust Him, because He is forever faithful

13 Reasons Why 


To many, Hannah Baker was just a fictional character first in a book then in a Netflix series that went viral. To many others who related, they saw Hannah Baker within themselves.
Many saw themselves walking beside her in the halls as whispers grew louder and couldn’t be silenced.
Other saw themselves in the relationships that went from best friends to looking at one another like strangers. And how having some good memories from the past can hurt.
Many saw themselves in loneliness when surrounded by so many. When you are in a sea of people yet you feel alone you just hope someone will understand.
Others saw themselves in the love story of being too afraid to say how you felt, out of fear the other person might not say it back. So silence broke hearts when words might have healed it. 
“I cost a girl her life because I was too afraid to love her.”
Many saw themselves in the rape scenes. Where fear and shock was very real to a point where you’re frozen just wanting it to stop. Then it does. And you change. And there is no way to undo what has happened to you, so you have to live with something you didn’t choose but was forced upon you. And it takes everything in you to not blame yourself.
Others saw themselves in how depressed Hannah was walking around trying to make sense of how complicated it is to feel things so deeply sometimes. Hiding behind a mask because it’s easier to pretend everything was okay, then admit you need help.
Many others and I think the hardest place people saw themselves was in the suicide. Whether you’ve attempted yourself or thought about it, the scene made me cringe. Not just because it was so graphic but because I know it’s so many people’s reality.

This is to you…

When suicide is the second leading cause of death for kids between the ages of 18-24, that’s more than a statistic. Those are lives that have been lost. Those are children, friends, students, peers. And way too many people who should still be here.
So to every person who isn’t a statistic…
I’m so proud of you.
I am so proud of you because I know how hard some days are.
I know how alone you feel.
I understand there’s this pain within you, you can’t shake.
I know you think ending your life is a solution. But it isn’t. All that happens when you end your pain is you pass along to someone else. Your death is something that happens to everyone else around you.

And I know you might feel empty or feel nothing at all. Maybe you have a plan already or a suicide note, written. When you know exactly how you are going to do it and when.
But I’m going to stop you there.
I’m going to ask you to stay because so many people need you here.
Because I know there is a little bit of hope left in you. I know you don’t want to end your life, you just want the pain you’re feeling to go away.
And I don’t know what is causing it for you, maybe it’s heartbreak or bullying or depression. Maybe you’re 17 too and you don’t see a future.
But these things you are feelings, these bad days you are having, are simply preparing you for all the good that has yet to come in your life.

Stay around to see those good days.

There are still so many people who have yet to meet you. So many lives you are going to change. Love stories that need you apart of them. Because as lost as you feel and as lonely as you feel, there is somebody looking for someone just like you. Do not deny them the chance of meeting you because you want to take your life.
I know, it kind of feels like you’re alone and no one understands. I know you might be stressed and overwhelmed, not just by school or work but about these heavy emotions consuming you and it’s taken a toll.
And you feel like a burden to people around you. You think their lives would be better if they didn’t have to worry about you so much. But they would rather worry than be weeping at your funeral blaming themselves for something they should have seen.
But people don’t see it. Because I know like Hannah, you’re really good at hiding how you feel. I know you’ve mastered the art of keeping your head down in silence when so many thoughts consume you, taking you to this dark negative place.
I know you feel both invisible and silent. Because you can’t even find the words to describe how you feel, you just know it’s not right.
I know how much it hurts. Even if you can’t describe what that “it” is. There’s a pain within your soul you can’t shake.

I’m going to tell you something you might not have heard in awhile you are so strong. The fact that you can feel these things so deeply and it can only be described as hell when your mind tries to drag you into darkness but you still find the light.
You become a light for others because you know what it’s like to be in that deep.
You weren’t here you simply end your life looking for the easy way out. Because nothing about that is easy. But you were here to prevent others from making a mistake that will cost them everything.
I need you to simply do one thing for me, get it tomorrow. And when you get there, get to the next day. And when you get there, get to the one after that. One day you are going to look back at this and realize how glad you are, things didn’t end when you wanted them to.
And when that day comes and you’re standing on your own two feet and those thoughts at night aren’t drowning you, the way I know they are right now, I want you to reach out to me and tell me you’ve made it.
Because I know you have the strength to get there.
A bad day is only 24 hours but the best day of your life could be tomorrow. 

Time Changes Everyone

I’m happy with the way things turned out. I’m happy with the path that my life took, with all of the twists and turns that lead me to the place where I am today.

But, even though I’m thankful for the location where I’m living and the people that are surrounding me, I still miss the way things used to be.

I miss the friends that I’ve grown apart from over the years. I miss the family that has moved away and lost touch with me. I miss the days when I could carry around a carefree attitude instead of worrying about when I have to pay my next bill and what time I have to wake up for work.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy with where I am. I’m proud of how far I’ve come. I wouldn’t change any aspect of my life, even if I had the ability to do so.

One of the scariest, but most comforting things about life is that it’s forever changing. One moment we’re up, the next were down, and then suddenly we’re on the upswing again.

We don’t sit still. We’re never stuck. We won’t always feel this low. Take a deep breath and remind yourself that you will be okay, because you will. I promise.
But that doesn’t mean I can’t miss the past. That I can’t relive the memories that mean the most to me.

In a perfect world, I could call up the friends that I miss and have a reunion with the family that I haven’t seen in years.

But the problem is that things change. I’m older now. I’m different now. Everyone around me is different, too. The people I remember from my memories aren’t the same people right now. They’re new, they’re fresh, they’re practical strangers.

Reconnecting with old friends might sound like the easy choice, but it isn’t always the right choice.

I can’t call up the exes I miss, because in my heart I know that we’re better off keeping our distance from each other. And I can’t go back to the job I miss, because I’ve outgrown it and am ready for bigger things.

I can’t just run back to the past when I’m feeling a little nostalgic, because I don’t belong there. I belong exactly where I am right now.

I’m already where I’m meant to be. I know I am. But I’m allowed to miss the past. I’m allowed to look back at old photographs and tell stories about how much fun my childhood friends were. I’m allowed to flip through yearbooks and social media stalk old crushes to see how they turned out.

I’m allowed to miss the past, but not want to go back to it. I’m allowed to think about how many amazing people I’ve met and places I’ve been, but be ready to move onto better things.

Sure, I miss the way things used to be and a part of me always will, a part of me will always love those old friends and cherish those old memories.

But, the truth is, I’m even happier now than I was back then. I’m an even better, stronger person than I ever was before. 

I do believe that everything happens for a reason, and I also  do believe that every choice we have made in the past has put us where we currently are in life. I do not believe that we would have ever worked — no matter how many do-overs we could’ve gotten — but I do believe that we both learned something from our time together that will serve us well in the future. #TBT

Being Comfortable With Uncertainty

“When you become comfortable with uncertainty, Infinite Possibilities open up in your life.” – Eckhart Tolle
“If you want to know your past – look into your present conditions. If you want to know your future – look into your present actions,” states the Chinese Proverb.
Reality is filled with uncertainty. 
Seldom do we have an exact picture of the path ahead, so we accept what arises with determined courage.
It is natural to uphold a level of control, yet we need uncertainty to prevail since the seeds of opportunity lie in the unexpected.
At a deeper level, we fear uncertainty because we lack the life skills to navigate through it. Recognised as the mind’s negativity bias, we doubt our capacity to cope with the unexpected and exaggerate events to the detriment of our mental and emotional wellbeing.
With so much talk of stress these days, we need to know what the imminent future holds in store for us. Yet the security we crave for is but an illusion to lull us into a false sense of safety. 
Author David Rock states in Your Brain at Work, “The brain craves certainty. A sense of uncertainty about the future and feeling out of control both generate strong limbic system responses.”
As a result your brain looks to your external environment to reinforce a known sense of balance. In primitive times our ancestors had to contend with a variety of conditions to sustain life. The threat of wild animals, adjusting to climatic conditions, fear of attack from rival tribes and the outbreak of disease, were barriers to their survival.
Thankfully, life in the modern world is not as bleak, yet modern life is replete with its own stressors which pose a hazard to our wellbeing. Uncertainty for the modern man is contained within: intimate relationships, volatile economies, uncertain job security, weather fluctuations and health concerns.
Bruce Hood affirms in his book The Self Illusion, “…in situations where outcomes are important, we get stressed by uncertainty and feel the need to do something so that we can have the illusion that we can control events.”
To retain binding command of our lives is both a blessing and curse. In one way it affirms our sense of safety, knowing we need not contend with tentative conditions. On the other hand, its misleading bias is overstated by our limited control, if any.
It is no surprise that the mind is notorious for emphasising circumstances which appear less dramatic than they are. Known in psychology as catastrophizing, the inherent bias to perceive events within a negative context.
The fear of “not knowing” what lies ahead impedes our long term welfare. At a deeper level, fear of the future terrifies us because of the unfamiliar conditions which lie ahead. It interferes with attaining emotional freedom.
“Faith means living with uncertainty – feeling your way through life, letting your heart guide you like a lantern in the dark.” – Dan Millman
So how can we embrace the unexpected without the barrage of emotions which ensue?
To accept uncertainty in our lives requires a change in perspective. We yield to the intrinsic forces of life instead of oppose them. However uncomfortable it may seem, we surrender to the natural order of events by leaning in to our fears and insecurities.
You reason with your anxieties by perceiving them with a logical mind instead of becoming embroiled in them. Otherwise, we risk activating our fight or flight nervous system every time, which senses we are in imminent danger instead of being uncomfortable.
Remain present in your body when anxiety threatens your emotional wellbeing. Choose a proper time to examine the motivation for your anxiety. 
Have there been moments in the past which caused similar anxiety? 
If so, are you repeating those same feelings instead of facing them?
Fear is a confronting emotion, though we gain strength when we embrace it as a useful emotion. I often remind myself that fear is an illusion. I can reduce the volume of fear by being exposed to it moderately each time.
We rarely have all the answers, which means uncertainty is as much an inner declaration that everything will turn out well in due course. It strengthens our resolve and commitment to the natural cycles of life. Change in itself is terrifying, not the conditions themselves.
The key lesson is to be comfortable with uncertainty – why? Because it exists and we should avoid retreating in resignation wishing life were different. 
We evolve by being exposed to uncertainty and confronting our fears, otherwise they dominate our mental landscape and grow in intensity. To that extreme that which we oppose must be met head on. 
It was the Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius who declared, “If you are distressed by anything external, the pain is not due to the thing itself, but to your own estimate of it; and this you have the power to revoke at any moment.”

Find middle ground between living with uncertainty and maintaining a level of control, short of manipulating outcomes. Let go of tension, anxiety and fear by embracing the unknown. Consider uncertainty a worthwhile journey toward a daring future. 
Uncertainty allows us to re-evaluate the past and make new choices in light of what transpires. It presents opportunities to create a compelling future based on new information.

Am Changing My Story

​I’m trying to change my story. I’m trying to change my narrative. I’m trying to change the voices in my head.
I’m trying to tell the world another story about myself. I’m trying to make it a story of hope, faith and success rather than a story of struggle, despair and failure.
I’m trying not to paint myself as a victim anymore. I’m done blaming my parents, my school, my friends or my culture for all my setbacks. I’m working with what I’ve got. I’m finally figuring out the right path for me. I’m finally driving in the right direction. I’m finally learning that it doesn’t have to be a sad story with no destination. I’m finally learning that I can still change the ending. I can still make it a happy one.
I’m trying not to associate my age with everything.Why I’m not rich or why I haven’t traveled to all the places I wanted to visit. I’m changing my hopeless questions to one simple answer: faith. I’m changing my story from being hopeless to being faithful. I no longer think everything in my life was ‘delayed,’ everything was right on time, everything came exactly when it should have arrived — not sooner or later because now I have the wisdom to appreciate them, the strength to endure the obstacles on the way, the stamina to fight harder for what I believe in and the gratitude to be thankful for the whole journey.
I’m changing my story from loneliness and darkness to self-love and light. I’m changing the tone of negative self-talk, of feeling inadequate, of being afraid of missing out, of being too attached to the minor things in life, of being too concerned about what people think to simply letting go of perfection, of deadlines, of expiration dates and expectations.
I’m human. I’m still finding myself. I’m still trying to understand life. I’m still trying to define what happiness is. I’m still trying to understand what kind of love I’m looking for and I’m tired of feeling sorry for myself just because I don’t have all the answers.
I’m done trying to make my story all about answers, I just want to enjoy reading it, I just want to enjoy living it. I just want to try to make it a good one. Even if it means having more questions than answers, even if it means not getting everything I want.
I’m not going to change the essence of the story, I’m changing everything around it. I’m changing the way I tell it. I’m changing the way I write it. I’m changing my voice, my tone and my speech.
I’m taking my pain and heartbreak and turning them into something beautiful. I’m editing my story, sometimes we forget that it’s still a draft, not the final manuscript and we can always go back and change it. It’s not over yet

A Love Letter To The Non-Believer

Dear You,
I know what you’re thinking. I know you already have your guard up, your metaphorical blanket wrapped tight around your shoulders, your eyes a little squinted at the screen. I know you’re wondering who the hell I think I am writing to you—as if I know your life or what you’re going through, as if could even begin to understand the depths of your trials, or the aches in your heart.

I don’t. I’ll fully admit that.

But see, I’m not writing to you from a place of perfection. I’m not writing to you from a high horse, from a chair of confidence, from this all-knowing stance, or from any ground other than the one you’re standing on.

I’m not writing to you because I think I know who you are or where you’ve been, or because I think I could ‘fix you’ or that you’re even in need of fixing.

I’m writing to you in my brokenness, in my failure, in my fear and insecurity and sin and mistakes. I’m writing to you because I am you, in so many ways. I’m writing to you because I want you to know you’re not alone. You’re heard. You’re noticed. You’re loved.

See, there’s a big misconception about my faith—that we’re people who think we’re better, that we’re trying to ‘save’ people that need saving, as if you aren’t capable of helping yourselves. But that’s not what Christianity is about. It’s not about telling people that they’re damned and sinful. It’s not about trying to act like we’re better, just because we believe in the unseen.

I’m writing to you, not because I think you need help, or because I think I’m in a much better place, or because it’s some moral duty of mine—I’m writing to you because I care. I’m writing to you because I used to be you. The person who was fine on their own, or broken and alone, or just swimming through life, attempting to find my own direction.

And I want you to know you don’t have to be lost.

I want you to know that life is all ups and downs. Sometimes you’ll feel incredible. Sometimes you’ll wake up and know that you do this on your own. And sometimes you’ll be totally able to.

But then other mornings you’ll wakeup and stub your toe on the cabinet. You’ll be out of milk for the cereal you just poured. You’ll be late to work and have your new car rear-ended at the stoplight. You’ll strain your back lifting groceries from the trunk. Your significant other will break up with you. The list goes on—you know what I mean, don’t you?

Sometimes life just gets out of our control. One minute we’re fine, the next we’re flat on our faces on the concrete, wondering what the heck we slipped on. And that’s where faith comes in.

Faith is trusting in the unseen and knowing that there is a God, a God who loves you all the time. Not just when you’re ‘perfect’ or ‘good.’ But not just when you’re broken either.

Faith is knowing that this God gave His son, His everything for you. For me. For us. So that we don’t have to face this craziness alone. So that when we’re up, we can celebrate. So that when we’re down, we can hold onto Him to guide us through.

See, this is why I’m writing to you—because I want you to know that love, to feel that love soak into your pores, to understand that no matter what happens or where you wander or how many times you fall short, you are forgiven and loved.

I want you to know that even though you don’t believe in Him, God is here. He’s waiting for you, and He’s guiding your life. He’s sending you miracles and signs. He’s blessing you. He’s calling you to Him when nothing else in life is going according to your plan.

I hope you listen.

And I hope you understand that I’m writing this because I care, not because I want to shove my beliefs down your throat, not because I have biased intentions, not because I think you and your way of living is ‘wrong.’

But because I know my God is a good God, a wonderful God, an incredible God—and I want you to know Him.

So please, know that you are loved. Know that you are strong. Know that you are beautiful and wonderful and complex and made by a God who will never leave or forsake you, no matter how much you push Him away.

Know that you don’t have to face this world alone.

Know that someone is fighting for you.

Know that my God cares, and I care.

Know that it’s okay to be skeptical, it’s okay to be scared, it’s okay to wonder and ask questions and be angry. But know that the anger you feel in your chest can be released. Know that the pain pulled into a tight knot around your heart can be untied. Know that the bitterness can be let go of.

Know you can begin again in His love.

So I hope you let your guard down, just a little. I hope you read these words, and then re-read them, just to know His heart a bit more.

I hope you know my door is open to talk, as is any Christian’s. And I hope that if and when you’re ready, you’ll reach out—to us, to Him—and know that you’ll be welcomed with open arms.

All my love,

Cliff Ochomo .