Simple Exercise Routine For Women Over 40
What Is Your Testimony?
Live In The Present- One Day At A Time
- The Just Shall Live By Faith 1: Vision & Humility – By Tokunbo Adejuwon 9 hours ago
- What’s Different About 2020? 2 days ago
- The Health Benefits Of Exercise After Age 40 2 months ago
- Simple Exercise Routine For Women Over 40 3 months ago
- What Is Your Testimony? 4 months ago
Sometime in 2014, I had a stirring in my spirit to enroll in Rhema Bible Training Center Abuja Nigeria. I did and I can tell you that that was one of my best decisions of the last decade.
My time in Rhema helped to realign the trajectory of my life and refocus my vision and purpose.
One of my favorite instructors and Director of Rhema Nigeria was gracious enough to share a synopsis of one of his teachings. I strongly believe that this message would help you as you chart the course of your journey through the next decade. Be Blessed!
Get The Vision
Habakkuk 2 King James Version (KJV)
- I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will watch to see what he will say unto me, and what I shall answer when I am reproved.
- And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.
- For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.
God’s plan was for righteousness to be made available to mankind through the finished work of redemption. And thanks be unto God, Jesus consummated that plan. Several Old Testament prophets prophesied of this coming redemption which we now have today.
To Live Outside Of Faith Is Pride And Arrogance
The believer who is now made righteous in Christ is to live by faith. Faith is man acknowledging his utter dependence on God. To live any other way than by faith in God’s Word is pride.
Jeremiah 17 King James Version (KJV)
5 Thus saith the Lord; Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord.
Romans 10:1-3 speaks similarly about Israel
1 Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.
2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.
3 For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.
To walk by faith is to walk in submission to God’s way
For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.
Romans 3:21-22 speaks further along these lines
“But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:”
A refusal to embrace the faith life is rebellion and arrogance to God. One can’t really walk in humility before God without walking in faith. Similarly, a person can’t really walk in faith without walking in humility. We must continually realize and remind ourselves that in ourselves we are nothing. It’s Jesus Christ Who is everything and it’s in Him that we are something.
What Do You See?
A key ingredient to walking in faith is vision. God’s Word brings vision of who we are in Christ, what we have in Him and what we can do because of Him. By taking time to meditate on the Word and fellowship with the Lord in prayer, He brings vision to our spirits of who we are and what we are called to do.
We need to write out the vision that God gives us plainly and follow His plans for our lives. Many times we make a plan of our own and then ask God to bless it. But God can’t put His approval on man’s plans. We should go to God to get His own vision and plan for our lives for that is already blessed.
2 Corinthians 5:7 James Version (KJV)
For we walk by faith, not by sight
We shouldn’t lead our lives primarily by the testimony of our physical senses. We need another kind of sight- we need God’s vision, which is His Word and not man’s limited vision. Anything that can be seen or perceived with the physical senses is transient, temporal and subject to change. It is God’s Word that’s eternal.
Where’s Your Focus?
What we keep looking at is of great importance if we are going to walk in faith.
2 Corinthians 4:18 James Version (KJV)
While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.
Proverbs 4: 20 -21 James Version (KJV)
20 My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings.
21 Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart
Hebrews 12:1-2 James Version (KJV)
1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
You Can Only Go As Far As You Can See
A man goes in the direction of his vision. We need to get God’s vision for us which is contained in a general sense on the pages of the Holy Writ. His specific plans for our individual lives would be revealed to us by His Spirit in our spirits as we spend time waiting on Him in prayer. Faith is acting on the Word of God, God’s written Word and also the specific instructions He speaks to our spirits.
Constant Fellowship with God will most certainly cause us to be visionary and see beyond natural limitations. There are absolutely no impossibilities with God. Whatever that God-given dream or vision God has placed in your spirit, He will bring it to pass if you will dare to believe Him and act upon His Word.
God Bless You.
About The Contributor
Rev. Tokunbo Adejuwon graduated from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria with a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics. He also graduated from Rhema Bible Training Center Nagpur, India as well as Rhema Correspondence Bible School Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA.
He was ordained by Pastor & Mrs. Kenneth W. Hagin and is credentialed with Rhema Ministerial Association International, USA. He additionally successfully completed the Senior Management Programme of Lagos Business School, Pan-Atlantic University, Nigeria.
He currently serves in Rhema Bible Training Center Nigeria as the National Director, with campuses in Abuja (National Headquarters), Port Harcourt, Kaduna and currently making plans for the start of the Lagos campus.
He has been actively working in the ministry for over 34 years. He has helped pioneer works, pastored, served in administrative roles and he also now itinerates both nationally and internationally.
He preaches and teaches God’s Word with passionate fervor especially on the subjects of faith and healing. He’s also very strong on following and flowing with the Holy Spirit.
Brother Toks, as he is fondly called is happily married to Dr. Akunna and they have 3 lovely children: Zoe, Sophia and Victor. They are based in Abuja, Nigeria.
Do you want to receive indepth teachings and more direction on how to get the vision, follow it and fulfill God’s purpose for your life?
You can follow Rev. Toks on all his social media handles…
Facebook – Tokunbo Adejuwon
You can also enroll into Rhema Bible Training Center- Trust me that’ll be one of the best decisions of your life.
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Learn from a refreshing team of anointed National and International instructors – experienced and endowed with multiple Graces.
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Happy New Year!
We hear these words every time a 365-day cycle is completed. So many people start looking forward to a new year once the end of November rolls up. It seems that folks forget that a new year is basically a new day just like any other. The only difference being that it heralds the start of another 365-day cycle.
I listened in on a message by Pastor Temi Odejide(London Lighthouse of House on The Rock) and he had this to say “ 2019 is not a personality but a culmination of choices and actions”.
In order to make this relevant for all times I say “a year is not a personality but the sum total of your choices and actions”
One of such choices today would be reading this article to the end. lol. On a serious note that’s one habit you have to pick up this year. READ!
So as we rejoice that we have left an old year and come into a new one, let us settle one thing: – the New Year would not automatically make all the ills in our life disappear. If you bring your old self with the old (bad) habits and choices into the New Year, by November ending you’ll be wishing for another new year.
I attended a 7pm -10pm cross over service in my church and then came home and logged onto two more services before praying and going to bed.
As I lay on my bed meditating on all that I heard in these services and regurgitating all that God had been dealing with me on, several things came to the fore of my mind. Some of these things were from the cross over messages I’d heard that resonated with what has been on my mind. I’ll share them with you and hope it helps someone.
A Closed Mind Cannot Fly
Pastor Godman Akinlabi of The Elevation Church (TEC) in Lagos made reference to this quote in the cause of his message. He posited that if you must have new beginnings, you have to keep an open mind. (Bible Reference – Acts Chapter 10).
Do not hold on to preconceived notions about how life should work. Always be open to new thoughts, new ideas and new experiences. What if God wants you to change your line of work? Maybe you worked in the Stock Exchange last year and God wants to move you to Agriculture? What if you are a 45 years old female and he wants you to date and subsequently marry a younger man? What if you are planning to leave the country where you currently live and God says stay? Would you be willing to obey?
Are you ready to pioneer new moves/trends? The Wright brothers were willing to be seen as weird. Many people told them that if God wanted us to fly he would have given us wings… hmmmm.. Think about that!
Skills Attract Kings
Pst Poju Oyemade of the Covenant Christian Center Lagos stated in the course of his message that kings and skills go hand in hand. Kings are always attracted to skill. You cannot be mediocre and stand before kings! (Bible Reference- Proverbs 22:29).
This got me and left me almost sleepless all night. Not because I haven’t heard this scripture or even taught a class or two on it. But it hit an already sore spot in me. I’d been regurgitating and pondering Isaiah 60 verses 1 to 3.
Isaiah 60 King James Version (KJV)
1 Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.
2 For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.
3 And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.
Isaiah 60 The Passion Translation (TPT)
1 “Rise up in splendor and be radiant,[a] for your light has dawned,
and Yahweh’s glory[b] now streams from you!
2 Look carefully! Darkness blankets the earth,
and thick gloom[c] covers the nations,
but Yahweh arises[d] upon you
and the brightness of his glory appears over you![e]
3 Nations will be attracted to your radiant light[f]
and kings to the sunrise-glory of your new day.[g]
Bishop T.D Jakes made reference to this scripture and said “Gentiles come to your light but Kings are only attracted to the BRIGHTNESS of your rising”
What have you been dabbling in on the “light” level? It’s time to take it to the “Brightness” level.
A candle is a light but it doesn’t have the same brightness as a lamp. A lamp is a light but there are different types of lamps and intensities of brightness.
Unless you hone your skill(s) until you get to the “brightness” level, you would continue to attract at best “Gentiles” You want kings to seek you out? Rise above the “light” level. (Note to Self).
Some folks are not even in the “light” level yet; well you can start the journey by rising. It’s never too late to learn a skill. Not too late to go back to school. You can intern with a master in your field. There’s so much help to be had if only you would arise!
Note to Multi-Talented Folks
I am sharing this from experience (I am multi-talented even if I say so myself lol). You can be a jack of all trades but can you please be master of one?
Hone that one skill that would open up auxiliary platforms that would showcase your other skills and talents. This is where it pays to have the help of the Holy Spirit.
Engage God’s presence and let the Holy Spirit lead you and tell you what that one skill is.
In the short course of my life, I’ve discovered that when you trust in God with all your heart and do not lean on your understanding, he takes you by the hand and leads you in the way you should go.
Now when he shows you the way, it is your responsibility to do the work; hunker down and get it right!
There’s so much I can say on this subject but let’s leave the rest for subsequent posts.
My prayer for you this New Year is that by November, you’ll be taking stock of the giant strides that you’ve taken. Note however that it may need to start with baby steps.
May you not be looking forward to 2021 as a means of escape from the frustrations of 2020.
God is ever ready to do exceeding abundantly above all you can think or ask. Are you ready to receive? Do you have the capacity to receive? In Bishop T.D. Jakes’ words “can you stand to be blessed?
To shine you have to arise. So ARISE, SHINE!
Welcome to a new year of possibilities !
I have this great friend of over a decade and he has remained buff and healthy since I’ve known him ( early 2000 till date). Well he’s a professional sports physiotherapist.
After I turned 40 I discovered that although I am slim, I was becoming winded more frequently than in years gone by. So I reached out to him and asked him the basic things I can do to remain fit even in my 40s and beyond.
Being the lecturer that he is, he took out time to give a somewhat detailed lecture(for a layman lol). Seeing as to how beneficial the lecture was, I decided to share it with you my good friends.
Health Benefits Of Exercise After Age 40 – Introduction
Yes you are 40 and I need you to know that your fourth decade is actually your best. You will realize that you are wiser and should be happier if you are doing things right. If you notice, your body will also be undergoing some changes that comes with the age and status. I want to use this opportunity to enumerate some of these changes for you.
Physiological Changes from Age 40 and above
- Takes longer for you to recover from injuries
- Prostate enlarges in men
- Testosterone production drops
- Fertility starts to decline
- Vision problem starts
- Memory issues
- High risk of Hypertension
- High risk of diabetes
- High risk of heart diseases
- High risk of cancer
- The bone density decreases
- High risk of stress fractures
- Muscle mass declines
- Your menstrual cycle gets wacky
- Urinary tract infections becomes more frequent in women
- It’s harder to get pregnant
- You experience vaginal dryness
- Tooth decay increases
- Your penis appears smaller
- Sexual appetite starts waning
- Reduced Immunity
- Frequent digestive issues
- You sleep less
- It’s harder to lose weight
- You become aware of being shorter
- Sense of smell and taste change
- Skin becomes more wrinkled
- Hair starts to grow in weird places and also reduces
- You experience more aches and pains
- Your hangovers become more intense
- Teeth becomes less sensitive
Differences between Exercise and Sport
Exercise is a form of physical activity done primarily to improve one’s health and fitness.
Sports is complex, institutionalized, competitive activity and these very characteristics works against moderate and rhythmical exercise. (CDC 1999)
Common Reasons We give not to Exercise
• I don’t have the time
• I don’t like to sweat
• I’ll look silly
• It hurts
• I don’t know what to do
• It’s not important
• My health won’t permit
• Gyms are too expensive
• I am too old now
A retrospective study of over 122,000 patients over 13 years by researchers in Cleveland revealed that not exercising is worse for your health than smoking, diabetes and heart disease. (JAMA, 2018)
Do you know?
• 13.5 million people have coronary heart disease.
• 1.5 million people suffer from a heart attack in a given year.
• 250,000 people suffer from hip fractures each year.
• Over 60 million people (a third of the population) are overweight.
• 50 million people have high blood pressure. (WHO, 2003)
Do you know that ……
• Child Obesity has reached epidemic proportions all over the world
• Children eat more and exercise less
• More time is spent watching TV and playing computer games
• Poor dietary habits coupled with lack of exercise leads to significant increase in levels of coronary heart diseases and type 2 diabetes.
How Physical Activity Impacts Health
• Helps control weight.
• Reduces feelings of depression and anxiety.
• Helps build and maintain healthy bones, muscles, and joints.
• Reduces the risk of developing colon cancer.
• Helps reduce blood pressure in people who already have high blood pressure
• Causes the development of new blood vessels in the heart and other muscles.
- Help to maintain homeostasis which is the state of balanced health in the body.
Health Risk of Physical Inactivity
Leading Causes of disease and disabilities associated with:
1. Coronary Heart Disease (CHD)
4. Type II Diabetes
6. Colorectal cancer
7. Stress and Anxiety
10. Low back pain
What Can Exercise do for you?
• Reduce the risk of the three leading causes of death: Heart Disease, stroke, and cancer
• Control or prevent development of Disease
• Enhance Mental Abilities
• Improve Sleeping Habits and Increase Energy Levels
• Lift Depression and Help Manage Stress
• Control Weight, improving self-image, appearance and health
Types of Exercise
I. Anaerobic Exercise
- Oxygen is not used for energy
- Intense physical activity in which the body’s supply of oxygen to produce energy does not meet demand.
Types of Anaerobic Exercise
• Strength Training + muscle size+ tendon, bone, and ligament strength + your lean muscle mass throughout.
*+ Basal Metabolic Rate (minimum amount of energy needed to maintain normal body functions)
Increase muscle mass = Increase basal metabolic rate= increase in loss of fat
II. Aerobic Exercise
Continuous activity that uses oxygen
• Blood supply to muscles and ability to use oxygen
• Cardiovascular/ cardio respiratory function (heart and lungs)
• Threshold for lactic acid accumulation (soreness)
• Resting blood pressure for people with high blood pressure
• Body fat and improved weight control
Types of Aerobic Exercises
• Brisk Walking
• More than 30minutes of continuous activity
• Less than 3000 steps Grossly Sedentary
• Btw 3000-5000 steps Moderately Active
• Btw 5000-7000 steps Moderately Active
• 10000 steps and above Very Active
Steps to Fitness
• Write Your Personal Fitness Goal
• Pre-participation Checklist
• Start Moving!
1. Has a doctor ever said you have heart trouble? ___ ___
2. Do you suffer frequently from chest pains? ___ ___
3. Do you often feel faint or have spells of severe dizziness? ___ ___
4. Has a doctor ever said your blood pressure was too high? ___ ___
5. Has a doctor ever told you that you have a bone or joint problem, such as arthritis, that has been or could be aggravated by exercise? ___ ___
6. Are you over age 65 and not accustomed to any exercise? ___ ___
7. Are you taking any prescription medications, such as those for heart problems or high blood pressure? ___ ___
8. Is there a good physical reason not mentioned here that you should not follow an activity program? ___ ___
If you answer “yes” to any question, we advise you to consult with your physician before beginning an exercise program.
Ok, Now What?
Create an Action Plan:
1. Decide what you want (your goal)
2. Visualize achieving this goal
3. Write it down
4. Include details
5. Reread it often
6. Reward yourself
The F- I – T Principle
Frequency (how often)
Intensity (how hard)
Time (how long)
F – I – T for Aerobic Activity
F – 3-5 times each week
I – keep heart rate between 60-80% MHR
T – Exercise continuously for minimum of 20 minutes.
F – I – T for Anaerobic Activity
F – 3 to 4 times each week
I – keep speed near 100% for 10 seconds to 2 minutes
T – Repeat your intervals 15-30 times with rest between
3 Parts to a Workout
1) Warm-Up: 3 – 5 min. then stretch 10 minutes
2) Work-Out: 20 – 30 min., 3 – 5 times per wk.
3) Cool-Down: gradually; “pooling”
Health Benefits Of Exercise After Age 40 – Final Tips for Being More Active
• Park the car farther away from your destination.
• Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
• Play with children or pets. Everybody wins.
• Take fitness breaks
• Perform gardening or home repair activities.
• Exercise while watching TV
• Keep a pair of comfortable walking or running shoes in your car and office.
• Exercise Safely and Wisely
• Drink extra water
• Always warm-up & cool-down before and after your workout
• Wear comfortable clothing
• Pay attention to any discomfort you may feel during exercise
• Follow your doctor’s recommendations concerning medications you may be taking.
Health Benefits of Exercise After Age 40 – Conclusion
Exercise has been proven to be one activity that impacts positively on the human body. It’s been shown to delay the ageing process and improve bodily functions.
The human body is made for movement however, this issue of movement is a road less travelled by many after the age of 40.
This is because we become more comfortable, we can now afford domestic help and subordinates who are always at our beck and call. In addition to that we have kids who are old enough to run errands, enough money to buy cars or pay for cabs.
What’s more we can now afford all the exotic meals we used to crave that was impossible to have in the previous decades because of paucity of funds.
The phrase “if you don’t use it you lose it” is very applicable to the human body. The moment you stop moving the body stops producing all the necessary hormones and strength that helps in balancing the body and keeping it healthy because the body believes you do not need it and you begin to lose fitness.
My advice to everyone in this age bracket is for us to find a form of exercise that we love to do that won’t feel like a burden or work. Find a partner who will do it with you so you don’t become bored. Make it a part of your daily activity so that you can easily achieve your objective.
There are a lot of smart watches now that you can invest in to be able to monitor your physical activity in a day. Do invest in them.
Dayo Ogunkunle is a Specialist Sports Physiotherapist who is currently the Head of Sports Physiotherapy Division in the Sports Medicine Center of the Federal Ministry of Youths Sports Development (Nigeria). He is an associate lecturer to so many universities that offer Physiotherapy in Nigeria. His skills have taken him to all the continents of the world. He is also dedicated to his vocation and this has won him many commendations and accolades.
Hi my good people!
It’s been a while; had to take time out for a month long project. It was tough but thank God for success.
You all have been on my mind all along and my team and i have been researching on issues that affect us midlifers.
Please stay tuned because we have lots of goodies for you. From health tips to financial tips and career change advise.
Meanwhile here’s a very useful video i found while looking for a simple exercise routine that wouldn’t break my bones lol! Enjoy
This video can also lead to you to various other exercise regimen for both men and women over 40.
Remember to consult your physician or therapist if you have any health issues before embarking on any of these exercises.
We often quote Revelations 12:11 “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
What is the “word of your testimony”?
Is it those two minutes that you stand before a congregation and tell them how God healed you?
Or that discussion you had with your house fellowship members or a group of friends telling them of how God delivered you from a fatal auto crash?
I dare say NO!
A light bulb went off in my head as I studied 1st John 5:9-13 (Please take a few minutes and read the entire chapter).
1 John 5:9-13 New International Version (NIV)
9 We accept human testimony, but God’s testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which he has given about his Son. 10 Whoever believes in the Son of God accepts this testimony. Whoever does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because they have not believed the testimony God has given about his Son. 11 And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
1 John 5:9-13 New King James Version (NKJV)
9 If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater; for this is the witness of God which He has testified of His Son. 10 He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. 11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. 13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.
From the foregoing, we see that God have given us a testimony and that is the testimony we must reiterate.
This therefore means that the word of my testimony is this” 11 that God has given us eternal life and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life”.
So anything that shows up in my life that does not look like the eternal life that God has given me, I overcome it by the blood of the lamb and by the word of my testimony.
Sickness comes against me; I overcome it by the blood of the lamb and by the word of my testimony. “By his stripes I am healed”
Death comes knocking at the door; I overcome it by the blood of the lamb and by the word of my testimony “I shall live and not die to declare the works of the lord in the land of the living.
Poverty, lack, disaster, troubles, temptations… whatever! You name it. I locate the word of my testimony and overcome it!
Even when it looks like the situation or circumstance would kill me; I do not love my life above the testimony that God has given. I do not fear the scorn and mockery of men. I do not fear being politically incorrect. I do not fear missing some popularity contest or even losing privileges.
I stand by the testimony that God has given; “God has given us eternal life and that life is in his son; I have the son therefore I have eternal life”.
Today I overcome by the blood of the lamb and by the word of my testimony. Hallelujah!
Live in the present! Every day you wake up to is a gift from God and has to be treated as such. It has to be received with joy and thanksgiving.
Psalm 118:24 King James Version (KJV)- This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
What did you expect God to do for you yesterday that you felt he didn’t do?
What are you looking forward for God to do tomorrow?
Have any of these expectations robbed you of living in the present?
I once saw a movie title “Waiting To Exhale” Although it didn’t appear deep or highly spiritual, it was an insightful movie.
Many of us are waiting for an event to occur in our lives before we “start living” or get excited about life.
Check out these scenarios:-
“I would be happy when I graduate from college and get a good job” Then it happened and you’re still not happy or “living yet”. Or you were happy for the first year, and then you got frustrated with/on the job and began to look forward to another event.
“I would be happy when I get married”; you got married and discovered it wasn’t all that you expected. Then you shifted gear and began to expect kids; “I would be happy when I have my 2.5 kids”
Now the kids are here and they are not all social media cracked them up to be. You expected your “mini me” to be a cute little boy or girl that would always make daddy or mummy go “aaaawww”. But no! Junior gets cranky and wants to have his way; cute bambina throws tantrums and wouldn’t eat or sleep without fussing.
And once again the happiness goal post shifts; “I would be happy when these kids grow up and go off to college”. They grow up, go off to college and graduate.
Then comes ” I would be happy when these children get married and give me grand kids”
These scenarios are just one aspect of our live expectations; what about the financial aspects? Or the career goals? Or even the ministry goals?
Wake Up And Smell The Coffee!
When would we learn that the rainbow has no end and neither is there any pot of gold at the non-existent end? How long would you keep reaching for the future or living in the past?
Some of us are living either in past glories or in past failures. “I remember when I was a size 6 with flat stomach and firm skin” or “I used to have 6-packs and toned muscles”. That’s mundane right? But many of us are still dreaming of our teenage or twenties bodies and hating the bodies we live in presently.
Well, if you hate those flabby muscles or sagging belly; then get to the gym! Have a lifestyle change; do something about it! But enjoy life daily while you are at it.
What about body changes that come with age that no amount of exercise or lifestyle change can alter? Be glad that you’ve lived long enough to encounter them, embrace the aging process and age gracefully.
You know in what areas you are still living in the past. It may be that prestigious job that came with so much perks and honor that you lost some years back or that business that was second to none in the 90’s. The list of past glories is endless but you have to let it go!
You may have encountered failures either through your carelessness, naivety of stupidity. Every one of us has. Pick up the lessons learnt, grow/improve and move on!
Learn From the Nature Of God
When God appeared to Moses, he told him that his name is “I AM”. God is not the future; he is not the past, He IS!
The Holy Spirit explained it to me this way; that God is a constant; he is present continuous. Before I was born, he IS, presently, he IS and in my future he IS. There is no “was” or “would be” with God.
Let’s examine some scriptures to buttress this fact
King James Version
And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.
New International Version
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.
Psalm 46: 1
King James Version
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
New International Version
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
New International Version
You will roll them up like a robe; like a garment they will be changed. But you remain the same, and your years will never end.”
King James Version
And as vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail.
Amplified Bible (AMP)
And like a robe You will roll them up;Like a garment they will be changed. But [a]You are the same [forever],And Your years will never end.”
King James Version
But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he IS, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
I could go on and on but I challenge you to go and do a study of the unchanging nature of God and his present continuous status.
Live In The Present
The fact that the God who made you “IS” gives you carte blanche to enjoy life every day. This is because he’s got you covered. He daily loads us with benefits (Psalms 68:19), so don’t let any day go by without availing yourself of the benefit of that day.
Does this now mean that you shouldn’t plan or have goals? Absolutely not! Have your plans and your goals. Learn from the mistakes of the past, look forward to the promise of better days ahead but enjoy this day in which you find yourself.
Let me end on this note. Do not borrow tomorrow’s troubles and forfeit today’s benefits.
New International Version
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
New Living Translation
“So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.
American King James Version
Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient to the day is the evil thereof.
What does confidence mean?
Wikipedia defines it thus “Confidence has a common meaning of a certainty about handling something, such as work, family, social events, or relationships. Some have ascribed confidence as a state of being certain either that a hypothesis or prediction is correct or that a chosen course of action is the best or most effective”.
So many people started out the year with strong confessions of faith and a joyful expectation of great things. Their confidence was most probably based on the truth that God is faithful and able to do what he promised.
Fast forward to the second half of the year and the confessions are beginning to wane. Not as bold and strong as in the first and second or even third month of the year.
Just like Peter, many of us are looking at the wind; but can one see the wind? Yep! When you look at the boisterous roiling of the sea, you are “seeing the wind”.
But how can I not cast away my confidence when the bills I saw in January are still staring me in the face?
How can I “cast not away my confidence” when it seems like I take one step forward and two backwards?
What is happening? Do I not have enough faith? Have I not trusted God enough? Am I not working hard or smart enough?
I have a word from God for you today….
Do you know that the hours before morning are usually the darkest?
Cast not away therefore your confidence for it has a great recompense of reward! For you have need of patience that after you have done the will of God you might obtain the promise.
Having done all to stand; STAND!!!
The patience you need now is not the literal dictionary patience of putting up with a situation. It is rather the bible patience of staying consistent with what you believe. It is standing firm on that promise that God gave you without “looking at the winds”.
You started out the year standing on God’s promise; stay steadfast and unmovable on it. Do not be like the first grade child who planted a bean seed and kept uprooting it to see whether it was growing.
You have planted the seed of your confession, it’s time to water it with your praise; even the sacrifice of praise. Your tears are part of the watering but only if they are cried in praise and worship and not in complaints and bitterness.
Lift up your head! Look above the winds; look up! The one who gave you a word is faithful (Numbers 23:19…Take out 5 minutes daily for seven days to meditate on this verse).
Welcome to the second part of my treatise on peer pressure. If you haven’t read the first part check it out here.
Every human being is born with the need to belong; there is a longing in everyone’s heart to be part of “something”. That’s why children in a family need to know that they are an integral part of the family. In the same vein, the new kid in school wants to be accepted by his peers. So also the new staff works hard to be accepted as part of the team.
Nobody wants to stick out like a sore thumb in any environment. Fitting in is the easiest thing to do at all times or is it? Sometimes the cost of fitting in is by far steeper than the pain of standing out.
It’s true that the natural inclination of any rational man (generic) is to tow the path of least resistance. But do you know what I’ve discovered? No one ever made it to greatness or significance in life by towing the path of least resistance.
Before we go far in this discuss, let’s consider the book of Romans 12: 2
King James Version
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Good News Translation
Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God – what is good and is pleasing to him and is perfect.
GOD’S WORD Translation
Don’t become like the people of this world. Instead, change the way you think. Then you will always be able to determine what God really wants–what is good, pleasing, and perfect.
The Message Bible
Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.
I always like to give us bible verses in different translations so that we can have a broader understanding of the verse. You can go a step further to do a study of this verse on your own.
What is God’s Will For Us?
From the forgoing, we can infer that God’s will for every one of his children is to think like him. That means being holy and being holy means being set apart; one of a kind.
So when you refuse to be ruled by self image, status symbols or worldly values, you are being holy. When your idea of an ideal mum or dad or how to conduct yourself as a mature single woman is not from Instagram or social media; when you’d rather obey God than live by the rules of society you stand out.
Holiness is not defined by the cloths you wear, your jewelries, accessories or hairstyle (those are more like expressions of your personality and or upbringing).
In these days of social media popularity and fronting, a lot of people would love to be seen as standing out. They post contradictory messages and attack whatever seems to be a norm. I’ve seen many quotes that get thumbs up and likes just because they sound deep but sadly are not scripturally sound.
Standing out and daring to walk alone doesn’t mean condemning people or their way of life. It doesn’t mean being a social miscreant or rebel. Neither does it mean causing strife and sowing seeds of discord wherever you are.
Standing out means learning to walk the path that God has ordained for you. Following God’s blueprint for your life whether single or married, raising your children according to God’s purpose and being all that he has ordained for you to be.
Note that every individual has a blueprint from God; he knows our end from our beginning. He is the manufacturer who has given us the user manual for his product and that user manual is the bible.
God’s Blueprint/User Manual
If you want to be totally free of peer pressure, the most important tool is the renewing of your mind. We know from Romans 12:2 that the renewing of our minds would help us access God’s will for our lives.
When you consult your manufacturer’s manual regularly, you would understand what to do and what not to do. That’s the process of renewing your mind.
Most user manuals would include the following sections:-
- The name of the product and other identification information (may also include materials used in manufacturing the product)
- The features or characteristics of the product
- How the product functions and what it can do
- Instruction for installation, Use and Maintenance
- Precautions, Safety code and other related guidelines
- Frequently asked questions
- A section that gives technical support for troubleshooting
- Warranty statements
Do you know that the bible contains all these sections about your life? You are the product, God is the manufacturer and the bible is the user manual.
Let me give you a fun challenge; look at all the sections of the above sample table of contents of a user manual and use it for a bible study plan.
For example; day one would be a study on number one on the above table of content. So I would go online and look for bible passages that define who I am (what did God call me when he made me?). Then I would go on to find out who I am in Christ Jesus; I would type in “bible verses about who I am in Christ Jesus” etc.
From there I would move on to item two on the list. Try this and you’ll be amazed at the treasures you’ll uncover. Furthermore, you’ll be so engrossed in this challenge that you’ll not have time to check out what other people are doing with their lives. What’s more, you’ll be delivered from the pressure of keeping up with the Joneses.
I started out this piece with some ideas that I wanted to share about practical steps on how to combat peer pressure. Little did I know that the Holy Spirit would steer my thoughts the way he did.
I invite you to join me in exploring our user manual; get in on the challenge today!
Whenever we hear the phrase “peer pressure” our minds go to children or teenagers. We think that its only teenagers that experience peer pressure. But can I announce to you that peer pressure is a lifelong phenomenon?
Before we go on, let me give us a formal definition of peer pressure: –
“Peer pressure is the direct influence on people by peers, or the effect on an individual who gets encouraged to follow their peers by changing their attitudes, values or behaviors to conform to those of the influencing group or individual. This can result in either a positive or negative effect or both”
The above definition confirms my earlier assertion that we are never free from peer pressure as long as we live.
That being said, it is pertinent that we understand the characteristics of peer pressure. For only then would we be able to combat or withstand negative peer pressure. And then we can go on to help our kids, mentees or people in our sphere of influence deal with it too!
7 Telltale Signs of Peer Pressure
Sometimes people wake up and decide to do something and they feel that the decision is solely theirs. Not so! There are subtle influences that informed that decision. So whether you are a teenager or midlifer, these telltale signs would alert you to peer pressure.
This is not totally negative; sometimes these adjustments may be for the better. There are people who make you want to be a better person. Some others influence/inspire you to seek God more; others challenge you to be a better spouse and/or parent… the list goes on
But how do you determine when these adjustments are negative? Here are some pointers:-
Anything/person that makes you go against God’s word is a negative influence. This is also true of anything/person that makes you go against the grain of who you are
Let’s come down to “mundane” issues. When you start behaving in ways that people who know you don’t recognize then there’s a negative peer pressure at work.
Case in point:
A friendly woman who goes out of her way to be friendly with everyone she meets; says “hi and how are you today” to the janitor, or chats with the waiter at the restaurant/cafeteria at lunch time. Then all of a sudden, she becomes this aloof person who now has an understanding that she’s a management staff who shouldn’t fraternize with the “help”.
Hmmm! that’s not really who she is; can it be that some persons have told her that successful career women carry themselves with an “air of dignity? This by the way is just a very shallow example but I trust that you get my drift.
A Feeling of Not Belonging (Low Self Esteem)
When a person feels like they don’t belong in a place, then there’s a subtle peer pressure to make the person fit in.
I know we have all found ourselves at one time or the other in this position. Maybe you didn’t/don’t speak with the same accent and inflections or you didn’t/don’t have the same fashion sense. Your case may be that you didn’t/don’t live in the same geographical location (every city/state in the world have “bourgee” locations) or you don’t have a certain pedigree.
We can all totally relate to that feeling of being the odd one in a group. And why is that? It’s because there’s an unwritten code that some influencers are pushing and you are subtly feeling the pressure to conform.
Trying new things is one sure sign of peer pressure. Again, this may be either positive or negative. Peer pressure can help you become more adventurous with your fashion sense, relaxation/fun, exercise regimen etc.
It can also lead you into bad habits; yes even as a midlifer! Don’t be deceived into thinking that it’s only teenagers that pick up bad habits.
I know a number of married women who went wild and broke up their marriages after they turned 40(Most of them got married in their 20s). Those I spoke with told me that they’ve been in bondage all these years but have now “woken up”. Do you think they started trying those new things or going wild on their own? Definitely not!
Once a person becomes overtly conscious of their image or status, then they are succumbing to peer pressure. You are a pawn in the hands of social influencers when you live by a “code of conduct” that has no scriptural or moral bearing or that exalt image above reality.
If you can buy clothes and other fashion accessories on credit just so that you look the part, you are a victim of peer pressure. Same goes for those who misplace priority for status symbols; flashy cars and a fancy house instead of a good school for the kids or college funds, expensive vacations instead of regular mortgage payments… and the list goes on.
Whenever you find yourself comparing yourself with someone else, you are responding to peer pressure. Whether you do so to feel good that you are better than others or you feel inferior to your contemporaries. It’s all one and the same; it does you more harm than good.
2 Corinthians 10:12
New International Version
We do not dare to classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise.
New Living Translation
Oh, don’t worry; we wouldn’t dare say that we are as wonderful as these other men who tell you how important they are! But they are only comparing themselves with each other, using themselves as the standard of measurement. How ignorant!
English Standard Version
Not that we dare to classify or compare ourselves with some of those who are commending themselves. But when they measure themselves by one another and compare themselves with one another, they are without understanding.
Doing Things Just to Please Others
Have you ever attended an event just to please someone? Or have you worn something you didn’t particularly like just because it’s trending? These are simple examples. Let’s go deeper…
What of those situations when you have been pressured into making life changing decisions that didn’t resonate with your spirit?
All of us can testify to having done something that we didn’t like just because of peer pressure or other forms of pressure.
Performance at Work or Other Life’s Endeavor
Peer pressure affects people’s performance either negatively or positively. Some people become overachievers while others become underachievers. Others yet are inspired to become all that God has ordained them to be.
The following excerpt from www.verywellmind.com explains overachievement/overachievers:-
“Success is something that everyone strives for, but is it ever possible to work too hard to reach your goals? Overachievers are people who do great things, but still need to accomplish more. Even though they attain more success than the vast majority of people, they are never satisfied and always strive to accomplish more.
While this behavior can lead to professional and academic success, it can create a huge imbalance in a person’s life. An overachiever may neglect his or her own needs or the needs of family and friends in order to triumph.
Achievement is, in most cases, a good thing. After all, who doesn’t want to reach their goals? The problem with overachievement is that it involves reaching these goals at costs that outweigh the rewards. People often sacrifice their own health, happiness, and relationships in order to chase a target that is always moving beyond them”. https://www.verywellmind.com/are-you-an-overachiever-4580606.
There are so many definitions of an underachiever but in the course of my study/research this write-up on the link below caught my attention
It explains who an underachiever is and what makes you one. This discourse goes to corroborate my assertions that we are driven to certain actions and habits by peer pressure.
I deliberately brought these links to you so that you can do a bit of further reading and hopefully learn more from these write-ups.
I’m sure some of you are wondering why this post is not replete with bible references as is my style but not to worry. This is just the first part of my thoughts and findings on peer pressure.
Please stay with me as I bring you the conclusion of this treatise in subsequent posts.
Many singles have woken up one day and discovered “wow! I’m 40 and single; how do I cope?
There are many reasons why one may still be single at 40. Some of the most commonly known reasons are as follows:-
Death of a spouse, Never Been Married, Divorce, Health or Personal Choice
Truth be told, 99.9999% of single people out there (especially women) never saw themselves single at 40 or beyond.
Of all the reasons for being single, one that poses the greatest challenge is that of never being married. Am I saying that other reasons are not as daunting or challenging? Nope! But sometimes society dictates otherwise.
Coming to Terms With Being 40 and Single
Navigating the waters of being single after 40 differs from one person to the other. But the constant factor that must anchor every Christian single is the bible.
Although many physiologists have a lot of theories on coming to terms with singlehood after 40, nothing beats the word of God.
To come to terms with your single status, you have to believe God’s word and hold on to it, come rain or shine.
Don’t roll your eyes just yet. Let’s consider these scriptures:-
1st Corinthians 7:17 The Message
And don’t be wishing you were someplace else or with someone else. Where you are right now is God’s place for you. Live and obey and love and believe right there. God, not your marital status, defines your life. Don’t think I’m being harder on you than on the others. I give this same counsel in all the churches.
Ephesians 1:5-6 New King James Version (NKJV)
5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He [a]made us accepted in the Beloved.
Ephesians 1:4-6 The Message (MSG)
3-6 How blessed is God! And what a blessing he is! He’s the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in him. Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of his lavish gift-giving by the hand of his beloved Son.
Practical Ways of Dealing With Singleness
Free yourself from societal expectation
So many single people live in constant fear of what people are saying about them. They are taunted by the ridicule and castigation of society.
I have first hand experience of it here in our African society. I’ve also heard about the experiences of my sisters in other climes and societies.
From the snide remarks at weddings, baby showers or other family gatherings. To the insinuation that something must be wrong with you if such a pretty and intelligent woman can’t get anyone to marry her. Or the admonition that you should please tone down your intelligence and assertiveness so that you wouldn’t intimidate potential suitors… the lines are unending.
For the guys, I’ve heard it said that a guy that’s still single at 40 and above must be irresponsible. In some circles, they say that there must be something wrong with the man physically (in reference to his sexual health/ abilities). In this day and age some people even go as far as questioning the person’s sexual orientation.
It can be exhausting I know but we all have to learn to cope with it.
Tips for coping
Let me share some of the coping mechanisms, I’ve adopted over the years
Before going for any gathering that I know may trigger pressure, I meditate on some scriptures. I call this my spiritual fortification
I keep emphasizing the fact that the bible is an anchor for our souls. Please don’t trivialize this fact or take it as cliché.
These scriptures work for me and I believe they’ll work for you too. Let me share some of them with you . They are Romans 8:28, Jeremiah 29:11, Isaiah 49. You can still find more for yourself.
In addition to meditating on scriptures, I pray in tongues for a bit. This helps to keep me grounded because I could become caustic if aggravated. I’ve noticed that this helps to fortify me and keep me calm no matter the jabs, innuendos or aggravations.
In addition to meditating on scriptures, I remind myself that life is an adventure and not a plan.
When I was coming to earth, I didn’t come with a plan. I was just born! I had no say on who my parents were going to be or about any aspect of my life. So there’s no need to stress myself over any situation
This is not a “Que será, sera” attitude but a paradigm shift. Build up a stronghold in your mind that you are complete in Christ and that nothing is wrong with you.
Marriage is not a reward for good behavior neither is singleness a punishment for bad behavior.
I would not be bamboozled into fulfilling anyone’s expectation of me. I would be courageous enough to trust God’s plan for my life.
Please note that these affirmations and fortifications is not a one off exercise but a continuous exercise. Trust me, the more you engage in this exercise, the calmer you become and more equipped to ignore all that society throws at you.
Avoid Pressure triggering situations
Try to avoid those situations where you are always put under undue pressure.
I’ve had to delete some numbers from my contact. I don’t attend every program I’m invited to (especially by long time acquaintances) I’m not saying you should cut off everyone from your past but learn how to evade too much proximity that leads to comparison.
Case in point; I was invited to the wedding of one of my Sunday school kids (she’s 20 years younger than I am). I knew most of my old acquaintances would be there and the first question out of their mouths would be “when would we attend your own wedding? Or why don’t you want to get married? So I called the bride-to-be’s mum (who happened to be an old friend) and asked for the bride’s account number (this was after making the requisite enquiries and congratulatory speech).
Thereafter, I made my excuses and expressed regrets at my inability to be at the wedding. Then immediately wired a cash gift to the account. This was a case where I could avoid the event. But in a case where you can’t avoid the event, you fortify yourself before attending.
Anyway, that’s my personal opinion and experience. You may differ or have a better way to handle this… I’d love to hear from you.
There are so many other pressure triggering situations and events. Learn to identify yours and ask for divine wisdom on how to avoid them or at best cope in those situations.
Surround Yourself With A Positive Support System
Be An Active Member of A Church
As the saying goes “no man is an island”. Everybody needs someone; that one or two persons that you can be vulnerable with and not feel judged or condemned.
As a Christian, it is pertinent that you have a church family. This is so important that we can’t gloss over it. We need to emphasize this point especially in this day and age where one can be a member of a church by proxy. Do not assume that logging on to a service and joining in the chat room conversation is the same as physical attendance and membership.
Remember Hebrews 10:25 tells us not to forsake the assembling of the saints. When you meet with other believers, you are encouraged and exhorted. You receive fortification to face the pressures and storms of life. Additionally, you get the right kind of support!
Proverbs 27:17 says that iron sharpens iron….
Some may say that church folks have done them more evil than good. Hmmmm! Stay with us; we’ll discuss the purpose of the church in later posts.
Have Friends of Like Faith and Values
In building a positive support system, you need to bear in mind that they have to be people of like faith and values. Amos 3:3 says “can two walk together except they agree? Do not surround yourself with people who scoff at scriptures. Or those who tell you to be real (that is suggesting that scriptures are fluffy but worldly philosophies are real).
Case in point:
Me: My hormones have been running wild lately; I need some TLC(tender, loving, care).
Happy go lucky, church going friend: I can hook you up with a cool bloke. No questions asked. After all God knows we have needs.
Same scenario, spirit-led friend: Let’s go take in a movie or go for a Zumba session. You’ll be fine.
Who do you think I should hang out with? The one who affirms my sexual frustrations and proffers one night stands or friends with benefits? Or the one who helps me find healthy alternative outlet for my frustrations?
Every human being is a slave to something; no one is actually “free” in the true sense. But thank God that we can choose our chains! Ponder this:
New International Version
Don’t you know that when you offer yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one you obey–whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?
New Living Translation
Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.
The right kind of support would not only keep you away from sin but would also build you up emotionally.
Don’t be friends with negative people. Don’t be friends with people who love comparison(2nd Corinthians 10:12b NIV :When they measure themselves by themselves and compare themselves with themselves, they are not wise). Don’t be friends with people who sap you of spiritual or emotional energy. Don’t! Don’t!! Don’t!!!
Your support group should be people whose values mirror yours; people who would look you in the eye and tell you the truth in love.
Learn To Play And Have Fun
When you hit age 40 and above, tendency is that you have become set in your ways. You go to work, come back home, eat and sleep.
Some folks are fortunate enough to love exercise or have developed an exercise regimen. So these ones may hit the gym or exercise routes twice or more times a week.
Other folks who are active in church or ministry would also invest their energy in church or ministry activities.
At the end of the day you find out that life seems to become a chore or burden. But it shouldn’t be!
Find activities that excite you! Make out time to play and have fun with friends and family (minus pressure triggering events; the keyword is fun. If it aint fun or healthy, stay away!).
Do not isolate yourself!
Life should not be all about responsibilities and obligations. Stop and smell the roses. Enjoy life; everyday that comes is a blessing from God. He has freely given us all things to enjoy.
Determine today to enjoy life in your single status. Whether single by choice, never married or made single by circumstance remember that your status in life does not define you.
You are already accepted in the beloved and you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you!
The truth is that you do not just have to cope with being 40 and single; you can be 40, 50 or 60 and above and still flourish.
It’s not over until you draw your last breath; if you are still here, then you’re not done.
I’d love to hear from you. Reach out to us in our comments section; we’ll be glad to respond.