Some of you have the habit of spending December 31 night praying for all the things you would like to happen to you in the New Year. You pray for jobs, money, opportunities and marriage partners – generally an increase in what you have, who you influence and what you will enjoy in the coming 12 months.
As for those praying for better husbands and wives and relationships, I am here to tell you that a few hours of singing on one night out of 365 will not help you if you carry on with the habits and mindset that characterised the past 12 months.
I’m not attempting to be blasphemous or limit the Almighty, but if you fall into any of these categories, chances are that your 2020 will simply be a continuation or a replay of your 2019.
If you live in a virtual reality: Social media came and found us vulnerable and unprepared. Even those of us who know better are busy prostituting ourselves online for one more ‘like’. The clever ones are at least making money out of the time they put online; ergo if it is not putting money in your bank you can be sure that your presence online is enriching one of the clever ones, which makes you part of the dumb 90 per cent. Reclaim some of that virtual time and transfer it to the real world if you want to see real change.
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If you have friends you learn or gain nothing from, but you give them a minimum of two hours a day chatting on WhatsApp, how is one night of prayer going to help you? Many of you will not even admit to these cool and trendy social media friends of yours that you attended an overnight prayer, let alone that you have problems which require spiritual solutions! How? All they see of your life is your full filter images of imaginary holidays and hotel meals whose names you cannot even pronounce. Why should God come and remove filters for you to think outside the (smartphone) box?
If you are stuck in stereotypes about what a man and a woman should do. My friend the world is changing fast, and you are being left behind. Take for example a recent acquaintance, Tiffany, who is entering the New Year on her third divorce. Her biggest problem is that she thinks men exist to bankroll her lifestyle, so even though she earns a pretty penny, her money is her money. She deliberately targets wealthy men whom she believes will fall in line. Unfortunately, even the wealthy can smell a stinking attitude. And it is not even about the money – they just get tired of the feeling that Tiffany will never be in their corner when it matters.
In this year of our Lord 2020, there will still be men who believe that if they pay tuition fees for a young girl at the university, in her gratitude and vulnerability she will slide into the role of virgin bride. Mister, one night of prayer will not protect you from the Jezebel who will eat your money and get pregnant by one of her other boyfriends. The point is, if you have been thinking a certain way about men, women and relationships and it has brought you nothing but heartbreak up to this point, maybe it is time to rethink the stereotype.
If you blame everything and everyone but yourself for your situation. Some of us are in denial about the situations we find ourselves in. Womanisers will claim they slipped and fell into their neighbour’s wife’s bosom. Drunks will blame the world for not wanting to hire them or sit in close proximity to their stinking selves. Parents of troubled children do not want to think how their own behaviour has influenced their child. "Someone jealous bewitched you and stole your promotion." All this may be so, but what was your part in getting to where you are now? What decisions did you make freely to bring you to this point?
People who blame the economy, the weather, the government, patriarchy, the other woman and the evil boss are usually people who secretly just want to talk and talk and do nothing. If you are in blame mode you are already defeated, because you do not have the power to change or influence the things you are blaming. Such people do not listen even when you give them a solution; it is highly unlikely they are listening for a response from God. Even if He were to give them an answer on the night of the 31st, they’d probably be too busy bitching to each other on WhatsApp to even get the message.