Superior Power is Superior Strategy and Superior Strategy is Paying Attention to Details

Charles de Montesquieu says, ‘power does not shift except for superior power…’ I have thought for many years that ‘superior power’ means ‘superior force,’ until recently while meditating on my experiences in the last seventeen years, I found that Charles de Montesquieu’s ‘superior power’ could not be referring to anything but ‘superior strategy’ of warfare…

I also found that one distinguishing characteristic of this ‘superior strategy’ is paying focused attention to full details of every life assignment and cultivating a dedication to see and plan ahead, noting at all times that the devil of all defeats and failures is nowhere, but in the details we ignore…

Practicing the foregoing puts us countless miles ahead of life obstacles and their authors, humans or institutions, deliberate or involuntary…

I have also found most tragically, that only few human beings pay attention to details in the order of our short discussion today…

Many prefer to wish than to strategize…

Erroneously, these ones believe that a good cause and behavior constitutes an impenetrable moral force that puts good ahead of evil in life automatically…

Alas, it is not always so…

Except a wise man has a superior strategy of war…He will be nothing but a wise man, who will always die at the backyard of supposed foolish man…E get as e be…

Taiwo Akinlami Sober on his knees on the LORD’s day.

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TODAY I TALK REAL ESTATE

I know a man..
He had ONE wife…
He had ONE child, a son…
He died…
His widow and his heir headed for the courts to contest his will…
Observing this I say,
When your children fight over your estate, it means you left nothing for them but the estate…
It means you left for them what you made..
You never left for them what made you(your values)…
If you now think, without your EXAMPLE and TRAINING, Your REAL ESTATE(your children) will know that what you made is temporal and limited and what made you is your SOURCE and it is eternal and unlimited, you make a mistake…
What made  you should be your greatest legacy but now you didn’t leave it behind…
On the other hand, if nothing made you, it means you never lived in the first instance…
How shall he, who never lived, leave anything behind?
What a legacy?
The legacy of your EXAMPLE and TRAINING…
The legacy of a HOME you never left behind…
For the living, I charge you to consider these things…
By the way we carry on,will we be able to say to our children(our REAL ESTATE) as we depart that silver and gold alone,I do not leave for you but also leave for you this which is of eternal and inestimable value…My GOOD NAME, which the Holy Writ says is better to be desired than silver and gold and my VALUES…The quintessential of my GOOD NAME…
May the LORD who owns this day on which I am Sober on my knees grant us all understanding…
Do have yourselves an INSPIRED Week…
TAIWO AKINLAMI

Child Protection and Preparation for Marriage: Fundamental Issues to Consider: IS THERE A HOME FOR OUR CHILD/CHILDREN TO BELONG?

It has been a while dear friends and well-wishers of the cause of child protection, the cause of protecting our children and preserving them for their glorious destiny.  An unprotected child is like a city without walls, I must declare.

My schedule has driven me very hard in recent days. I thank God for His mercies, in whose sight I have found favour. He has filled my hands with meaningful engagement on the noble cause of child protection.

Glad to be back today to continue with yet another step in advocacy, I embarked upon recently. I have been looking at the fundamental issues those preparing for marriage should consider on the matter of child protection. Permit me today to discuss the third issue: IS THERE A HOME FOR OUR CHILD/CHILDREN TO BELONG?

I attended a couple’s wedding recently and I wept throughout the church service. It was highly embarrassing that I had to put my head down so that people would not begin to ask me questions. I wept because, I knew the couple very well. I am aware that both the groom and the bride are from broken homes. The marriages of their parents did not work. Apart from the fact that the marriages did not work, the parents of one of the couple are still not on talking terms today.  There is serious enmity and bitterness, which manifest in palpable tension when they meet.  They do not see eye to eye.

I know their backgrounds are likely to have tremendous impact on their own home, if they take things for granted. I am aware enough to know that the fact that the couple were not brought up in settled homes have serious impact on their psyche, their perception about life and the marriage institution. I understand that by their socialization, they are not equipped to run a settled home. This explains why we find generations of divorcees. As a matter of fact in the extended family of one of the couple, it is a fact that only one person has a settled home. The rest are divorcees.

I am not of the view that their marriage is doomed, not at all. I am only of the view that if they do not pay attention to proper reorientation about life and the marriage institution, their marriage has no future. Their socialization, which creates their present perception about life and marriage, will surely catch up with them.

I believe people from abusive background and dysfunctional homes have a lot of work to do if they must have settled home. They must understand that by virtue of their unpleasant upbringing there is a pattern of behaviour ingrained in their psych, which is waiting for them in every stage of life to make a mess of any meaningful advancement they make in life, when life places a demand on same.  Laura Schlessinger in her book, Bad Childhood Good Life: How to Blossom and Thrive In Spite of an Unhappy Childhood, submits, ‘I believe that many people don’t even realize that their childhood history has impacted their adult thought and behavioral patterns in unproductive ways. They don’t realize that some of their less pleasant or destructive adult emotional reactions are reflexive responses forged by their unfortunate childhood challenges. They don’t realize that much of their adult life has been dedicated to repeating ugly childhood dynamics in an attempt to repair deep childhood hurts and hurting.’

The impact of such pattern is eternal except there is divine intervention.  But we must understand that divine intervention begins with a recognition of the fact that one needs help, which must be backed up with an unalloyed willingness to receive this help and unshakeable believe that transformation is an ever-present possibility. The challenge is never with God. He is always willing and able to help and heal. The challenge is always with the preparedness of the one who needs help to make himself/herself available for the needed help. Thus, in my fierce struggle to put my childhood abuses behind me in a determined attempt to create a new life far beyond the ugly predictions of my troubled childhood and dysfunctional home, I have with inspiration provided by my many victories redefined change. As far as I am concerned, change as an ever-present possibility for anyone, who is ready to take responsibility. The operating word here is RESPONSIBILITY.  Responsibility is the operating word here. The opposite is to take chances. We must take responsibility for our childhood, with a view to creating a better future, where our childhood was abused and our homes dysfunctional.

Please note that a person, who has never experienced a happy and functional home before does not possibly know how it looks like and the immense benefits therein. Therefore, he/she is not likely to defend same with all of his/her heart. When we know the benefits or disadvantages of a venture, entity or habit to us and the society at large, there is every possibility that we will defend it for the exceptional values it adds.

Please note that one of the fundamental needs of a child is that he/she needs somewhere to belong, first a home and second, a community. The state of the family determines the well-being or otherwise of the community. The family produces the community. According to the Ghanaian proverb, ‘the ruin of a nation begins in the homes of it’s people.’ It goes without saying that the opposite is also an absolute truth and I render it thus: ‘the prosperity of a nation begins in the homes of it’s people.’

The home is different from a shelter, which beauty is determined by the serenity of environment, aesthetics of the building, furniture and the rest. The father and mother are the cardinal pillars of a healthy home and functional family. Their values and virtues determine the foundation, sustainability and prosperity of the family. The best families protect their children while the worst perceive them as nothing but objects of chance and abuse, noting that most families, who abuse their children, are not wicked. They only act out their bad experiences and ignorance.

Therefore couples, who are preparing for marriage and plan to have children, must as matter of necessity and the best interest of the child, sincerely ask and answer satisfactorily in honour of the truth, this question: IS THERE A HOME FOR OUR CHILD/CHILDREN TO BELONG? Until they do justice to this question, I do not think they should proceed to marriage. They must understand that the real testimony of marriage is not that people get married. If the real testimony of marriage is that people get married, there would have been divorces as we have it today in our society. In fact it is fast becoming a celebrated norm. I once submitted that people would soon begin to celebrate divorces, same way they celebrate weddings as both are fast assuming same status today. Permit me to submit that the real joy and testimony of marriage is that provides a rich opportunity for personal fulfilment and contribution to the peace of the general public, by protecting and training children complete children, prepared to face the challenges of today and the future.

I must state here that marriages do not fall apart until the foundation is faulty. The foundation is not faulty until the parties getting married do not ask and answer some fundamental questions, like the ones fighting for our attention here. When a marriage falls apart as a result of the foregoing, the children are the first to fall apart within and later externally. Their destiny simply crashes, except there is divine intervention, the divorcing parties, would have set in motion many generation of divorcees, if they are not themselves responding to the pattern already installed by their own immediate or extended families.

Divorce has unusually damning impact on children. Sitting as a mediator on UNICEF platform, reconciling children, who ran away from home to their parents, I found that most of the children, we attended to were from broken homes.

Please note that I strongly believe that if many people, who are about to sign up for marriage today would pay necessary attention to my argument here and adhere to its principles, the alarming divorce rate in our society today will reduce drastically. Married couples will also build a peaceful home in which they will raise complete children.

Permit me to submit that when I use the phrase, ‘peaceful home’ here, I do not refer to a perfect home. The best of homes have their challenges. I talk about a home; where despite its challenges, it is prepared, disciplined and sane enough to give peace and stability an ample chance, present to their children and other observers, the marriage institution an immense blessing that it is, protect their children from abuse and prepare them as balanced and blessed human beings. Such was the home in which Billy Graham was raised, which he wrote copiously about in his autobiography, Just As I Am, ‘still in his autobiography wrote: ‘there had to have been tensions between Daddy and Mother from time to time, that we children were not supposed to see. I suppose my parents occasionally disappointed each other, and certainly they sometimes disagreed about serious as well as trivial things. But in any quarrels between them (parents) that I witnessed, I never heard either of them use a word of profanity. My mother and father [mostly my mother] could storm at each other once in a while when provoked, but they weathered every tempest and sailed on, together…In all the strictness of my upbringing, there was no hint of child abuse.

I think I have said more than enough on this matter. I charge you to please read and spread. I beg to sign out after a long talk but not without charging you to Think the CHILD…Think TODAY…Think the FUTURE…

What Lessons Does Ignorance Teach Children?

Dateline: 2010: UNICEF trained leading journalists and producers of children program on Children Rights/Protection…To the question, which law protects children in Nigeria? None of the Child-focused journalists & producers knew of the Child’s Rights Act 2003, which forms the foundation of their work, promulgated 7 years earlier…

Dateline: June, 2014: SOS Children Villages trained teachers and parents on Child’s Rights and Discipline…Some of the teachers, who have been in the profession for over 30 years…None of them has ever checked the words, ‘Children’ and ‘Discipline’ in the dictionary before not to talk of doing a personal study on Child Discipline and Development…

I thought to myself: What Lessons Do Ignorance Teach? What Information Does Ignorance Disseminate? What Discipline Does Ignorance Instil? What Kind of Children Does Ignorance Groom or Raise? I invite you to be sober with me on my knees on this LORD’S Day…Alas!!! Primary and Secondary Caregivers lack Knowledge, Skills and Attitude without which no one shall successfully raise a COMPLETE CHILD…May God Help Us as we Think the CHILD…Think TODAY…Think the FUTURE…

Child Protection and Preparation for Marriage: Fundamental Issues to Consider: WHAT DO WE BELIEF?

This is a major question I believe couples planning to get married must ask and answer. Couple must define and agree on what they believe about children and the roles of children in the proposed marriage. Marrying couples must take careful inventory of their beliefs on children and see if there are common grounds. For example:

  1. Do they believe that having children is the security of a lasting marriage relationship, such that it may be necessary for the wife-to-be to be pregnant or bear a child before marriage is contracted?
  2. When do they want to begin to have children?
  3. What do they believe about the number of children they should have?
  4. Do they believe that the number one responsibility of a private and secondary caregiver to the child is to protect the child?
  5. Do they believe that abuse changes everything about the child?
  6. Do they believe that in matter of abuse, prevention is better than cure as abuse can never be cured except by divine intervention?
  7. Do they believe that a settled, peaceful and united home is a prerequisite to raising sane and protected children?
  8. Do they have gender preference, such that if all their children belong to one gender it would be considered as a problem?
  9. Is the marriage for the purpose of having children, such that if children do not come early, there may be tension?
  10. What would be the roles of third parties if having children is delayed?
  11. If children do not come early, would parties be free to go their different ways?
  12. Or does that man believe that once children do not come early, the wife should be blamed and she must perform her duty of producing children or be replaced either by being removed from the marriage or her husband finding another woman to produce children, with or without her knowledge?
  13. What if they never have children, what would be the response of the couples to themselves or the world around them?
  14. Do they believe that children should be adopted and if so what informs the belief and under what circumstances would the belief be given expression in their marriage?
  15. What is their belief about child discipline?
  16. Do they believe that in child discipline example is superior to instruction?
  17. Do they believe that in child discipline long before children understand instruction, they already understand example?
  18. What role do they believe education play in the life of a child and what kind of investment should be made in same?
  19. Do they believe their roles in the life of the child can be delegated to a school and other secondary caregivers?
  20. What is the role of the community (extended family members, neighbours, media and the likes) on their children?
  21. Do they believe that their children could live with other people temporarily or permanently?
  22. Do they believe that the people they expose their children to either to within and outside their homes have great impact on their children?

The catalogue of beliefs is endless. The foregoing is an attempt to scratch the surface. Permit me to submit most profoundly that belief is foundational to how we treat children. As a matter of fact we will never treat children above what we believe about them. Our beliefs on most matter are so ingrained in our psyche that they have entered a default mode. They happen without our thinking and even before we could blink. How do they assume a default mode? It is simply our beliefs are effects of certain fundamental causes in our upbringing. Our belief is our psychology which is produced by life, using the raw materials of our socialization. Our beliefs are the fruits and our experiences are the seeds. It is the unchangeable order of life that for every effect you see is a product of causes. It is therefore safe to say that there will never be effects without causes. Our world today creates programs, which addresses effects and leave out causes. Beliefs are so strong that they cannot be changed overnight. The fact is that they take their places at the most crucial moments of our lives. In some cases they even shock us when they show up, almost with our control.

Permit me to submit that belief, more than any other thing creates the circumstances of birth and upbringing of a child. Take for example a man, who believes that he should have a child with another woman if the wife does not have children early or a man, who prefers the male gender in children and because he does not have a male child with his wife decides to look for him with another woman. What about a man, who impregnates a woman and decides to marry her as a second wife thereby ‘accidentally’ creating a polygamous home? Or a man, who claims to have a fling with a woman, which results in pregnancy and decides to father the child, in most cases without the knowledge of the wife? In most cases, these beliefs are expressed without the knowledge of the wife. Or a woman, who has a fling and decides to lie about the paternity of her child? Also consider a situation where couples go their separate ways before the birth of their children or where they decide to go their separate ways despite the fact that there are children in the marriage.

The truth of the matter is that I have been a frontline advocate of the truism that the circumstances of birth do not define the destiny of a child. Permit me to declare categorically that circumstances of birth may not ultimately define the destiny of a child, but they have unusual impact on the sanity of the child. When a child is born under any of the circumstances enumerated above and many more, too numerous to mention here, they are children born into and being brought up in difficult circumstances and their sanity is threatened. Where their sanity is threatened, their destiny is under formidable threat. A child needs a sane mind to pursue a meaningful destiny.

Time will fail me to illustrate the foregoing with true life stories, but note that the foregoing circumstances of birth and other socialization factors, which are products of beliefs, have created the people we today call psychopaths, sociopaths, paedophiles, schizophrenics, persons with Dissociative Disorder and many other mental conditions too numerous to mention.

It is important for marrying couples to know that the joy of having children is not to bring them to this world. The real joy is how they are raised and how they are raised is predicated upon the beliefs of the primary and secondary caregivers.

Permit to declare most unequivocally, protection of children begins with healthy self-esteem. Do the marring couples believe this established truism? It is a dangerous attempt therefore for couples to proceed to marriage without paying very serious attention to the subject of their beliefs, particularly as it relates to children and their protection.

Please note that the wellbeing and protection of children is guaranteed by the beliefs of their primary caregivers, but if their belief is faulty, what shall the child do but despair and go around with a sense of insecurity?

Finally, it is important to note that children need something to believe and it begins with what the primary caregivers believe.

I hope you find the visit worth the time today. I beg to sign out after a long talk but not without charging you to Think the CHILD…Think TODAY…Think the FUTURE…

TO SUBVERT A MAN IN HIS CAUSE: DOES THE LORD APPROVE?

A man’s MIND is the greatest commodity to WASTE…
A man’s SWEAT is the most invaluable possession to STEAL…
A man’s CONSCIENCE is the biggest entity to NEGOTIATE…
A man’s TIME is the highest currency to DEVALUE…
A man’s PRESENCE is the greatest GIFT to DESPISE…
A man’s WORD is the greatest expression to DISREGARD…
A man’s DESTINY is the most powerful cause to SUBVERT…
As we go into a new week I charge us all under GOD to bend all of our knees to HIM that we will WALK and WORK CIRCUMSPECTLY in all VILIGILANCE, believing our faithful FATHER to open our eyes to see, even from afar, EVERY plot from FRIENDS and FOES alike to WASTE…STEAL…NEGOTIATE…DEVALUE…DESPISE…DISREGARD…SUBVERT…
I charge us to also beseech HIM with all of our HEARTS that HE will also ENDUE us with HIS WISDOM to know what to do at that VERY INSTANCE of SUBVERTION, for ‘to SUBVERT a man in his CAUSE the GOOD LORD DOES NOT APPROVE!’ so LAMENTED one of HIS Prophets, named Jeremiah…
SO HELP US GOD…
Taiwo Akinlami Sober on His Knees on the LORD’s Day