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FIVE LESSONS I LEARNT IN MY FIRST YEAR OF MARRIAGE

Hey Fam,

Yesterday was my wedding anniversary. Yeah, it’s been a whole year I came to give you the news of getting married, and it’s been a journey. Honestly, nothing has stretched me like marriage. I have grown, learned a lot, and unlearnt some things, and I’m still growing on this journey.

I want to share with you quickly five major lessons I’ve learned in my first year.

YOUR MARRIAGE IS WHAT YOU CALL IT

When I was getting married, I heard different things from different people. Everybody has an opinion to give newlyweds, which I think is not bad but you have to sieve what you hear. Some people told me the first year would be the hardest, and others said it would be easy. The people who said it would be hard have their reasons, and honestly, I fed on those words, and I found myself always afraid of what’s going to happen.

When we had no conflict, I was scared because I felt the peace was never going last. It took me a while to deal with this fear. I want to urge you if you are about to get married, protect your heart and declare what you want. I think the first year is the learning year, but at the same time, it can be sweet. The question is, what do you want?

I AM NOT A SUPERWOMAN

Ouch! This truth hurts. I grew up doing everything by myself, and it’s the reason I broke down quickly. Marriage is a partnership, and that is the whole point. After we got married, I noticed I was doing too much. I had a full-time job, a blog to run, a podcast, and other commitments, so I got tired quickly. All I had to do was ask for help. When I started asking my husband to help with some things, I felt better. I know you have been raised to be a home keeper, but you can’t do it all by yourself. It’s okay to ask for help. I find it easier when I’m cooking, and my husband is keeping me company. It lightens my burden. Women, it is okay to ask for help! You are not a superwoman.

MEN AND WOMEN COMMUNICATE DIFFERENTLY

You will learn this in marriage counseling, but the real deal happens when you enter into marriage. The way you communicate is different from your partner. I’m the one who wants to bear it all out, but my husband, on the other hand, wants to spend some time thinking about it before he voices out, so I find out that I get angry when he doesn’t tell me things on time. We had a talk about it, and we came to a middle ground, marriage is communication. Don’t expect your partner to communicate the same way you do. If you are not okay with anything, talk about it. Giving your partner silent treatment is not a wise decision. Talk about it.

DON’T TRY TO CHANGE YOUR PARTNER

This was a lesson I had to learn. For a long time, I wanted my husband to do things in my way. Let me give you an example. I believe in doing things ASAP, I don’t like it when decisions are taking a long time, but my husband, on the other hand, takes his time. He spends time analyzing and calculating the risks involved. This act would annoy me, but I noticed that he doesn’t like it when I forced him to make decisions on my terms. I had to sit down and understand the differences. Your partner cannot be you, so don’t force them to be like you. If you married yourself life would be boring so celebrate the differences.

YOU NEED JESUS

If you don’t remember anything, please do not forget this lesson. You cannot run marriage without God. You need the Holy Spirit. Forget about the paparazzi married people display on social media. It takes the help of God to keep a good home. You are two different people from different backgrounds trying to build a life together, so there would be frictions. We have had fights this first year that I thought would last for weeks but what we realize is that by the time we are on day two, the HolySpirit is dealing with us individually, and by the end of day two, we are apologizing and promising to do better.

CONCLUSION

Marriage is beautiful, and I can tell you that it’s fun, but the real deal is getting it right. Being on this journey with my partner has been blissful, and I can tell you that the wait is worth it. There are still good marriages, and yours would not be an exception.

I look forward to sharing and celebrating your love story.

I love you.

Your friend and sister,

Onome

see also: Our zero naira wedding

DAVID AND VICTORIA: WHEN GOD WRITES THE LOVE STORY

There is nothing regular about this couple; theirs is a story of love, patience, God’s intervention and grace. It is not just exciting but it is also a beautiful story.

David and Victoria are my friends and their love would make you jealous. The way David watches out for Victoria and the way he protects her, is something I admire. The interesting thing about them is their friendship. Victoria is the shy one while David is quite outspoken. It’s a perfect blend but what amazes me the most, is how they always look out for each other.

Beyond love and affection, is the commitment they share and how passionate they are about purpose. Victoria has been a great helpmeet and I’ve seen how she supports and encourages David when he goes out to minister or when he holds his programme.

Another gist about this couple is that they share the same birthdate and today is their birthday.

Interviewing this couple was a great experience because they were both real and their story is one you will learn from.

It is time to meet this beautiful couple, so grab your bottle of orange juice and get a slice of cake to step down with, while you read how God wrote Victoria and David’s love story.

Onome:  Tell us something about you and what makes you special?

Victoria:  Everything about me is special, Onome and it’s because God is my creator.  He is the most special person on earth, and He created me, thus, I am special.

I am Victoria Adeola Ibitoye (nee Ajayi), I am a child of God and an Accountant by profession, trained at the Federal Polytechnic, Offa. I served in Rivers State. I love reading, dancing, travelling and I also love music.

David: The scriptures from A to Z testify to it about me. I am special because God says so. After all, why will Christ die for a nobody?

I am David Iyanuoluwa Ibitoye. I am saved and I love Jesus more than my breath. I want to die loving Him. I am an alumnus of the great University of Ilorin; the Better By Far University, and the Nigerian Baptist Theological Seminary, Ogbomoso. Needless to say, I am a pastor. I got born again in the year 2009. I love music, reading, travelling (not on Nigerian roads though), gisting and meditating. I’m a lazy writer but oftentimes I stumble on writing and it comes out fine…I guess.

Onome: Tell us about your waiting season

Victoria: God helped me during my waiting season because I decided from the beginning, not to play around. I wanted my first love to be my husband, and God did just that for me. Not that I didn’t have suitors, some of them looked so much “like it”, but God helped me out.

At a time, I looked at many of my friends getting engaged and I was just there, but the Holy Spirit kept encouraging me to wait and I did just that. Then God showed me, love, by giving me the best man on earth as my husband.

David: Well, when I was single, I was helped by God. I had a breakup as a teenager. I was the one who broke up. I regret that decision because I knew I hurt the lady. So, I decided never to enter into any other relationship unsure. I promised myself before God that my next girlfriend would be my wife, and God helped me.

Onome: How did you meet your husband/wife and how did you know he/she was the one?

Victoria: On the 3rd of August 2014 in church, after the Sunday school class he took, he asked me to please wait behind to see him, for an important discussion after service, which I did. Interestingly, I wasn’t expecting it. I thought he wanted to discuss some “Kingdom assignment” with me (not as if toasting me was not kingdom assignment though), to my amazement, he told me he would like to walk life’s journey with me, and that was it. He did not over-spiritualize the proposal, he didn’t try to impress me or sweep me off my feet with some spiritual talk. He just said, “I love you sister Vic, and I will like you to be my wife.” What impressed me the most was that his words were brief and straight to the point. With a little sprinkle of arrogance which I enjoyed though, he asked if I would like to be disturbed for my answer or if I would just get back to him whenever I was ready. I loved that. I told him I prefer not to be disturbed.

Actually, immediately he came, I had this inner peace in my spirit man, compared to what I had experienced with other suitors. But you know, as a lady, I didn’t want to rush into my response like that, so I told him I would get back to him, and I did on the 1st of October 2014 after being fully convinced by the Holy Spirit.

David: Actually, I have received her since 2010. That year, I was working a menial job and came home hungry one day. I was scrambling for what to eat at home but couldn’t find any. So I went to my mom’s WMU bag (Women Missionary Union, it’s the women arm of the Baptist denomination) for WMU biscuits and the likes and was disappointed again. While searching inside the bag, I saw a picture of a prison evangelism team of my church and saw my fiancée among the prison evangelists.

Then I clearly heard the Holy-Ghost say (so audibly, I had to turn back to check if someone was behind me) “That is your wife” and that was it. Though I ignored for some time because I wasn’t at first pleased with it, God had to teach me how to love His will, and if I have to choose over and over again, I would still choose my Victoria. In 2014 after having been fully convinced by the Lord and just after graduating Unilorin, I went to deliver my manifesto to her after a Sunday service. Three months later she said yes.

Onome: How was it like preparing for your wedding?

Victoria: Hmmm… I would say interesting but ours was a testimony so I would say God did it.

David: God gave us a word in Matthew 22:2 “The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son”… That was it. God told us in the order of heaven, the Father makes marriages for His children, so He began to give us specific instructions on what to do. He sent many angels in human form to us. For example, when it was time to get introduced and it was looking impossible, it was one of my Pastors, Reverend Shola Sangoleye, who advised us to just pick a day and trust God. We chose November 30 and God made it work. Then we were left with the wedding date. We found it hard to conclude on a day, then God just told us to pick by faith. We settled eventually for May 30, then coronavirus came. We decided we were not going to shift the day for anything. God granted our hearts’ desires and it worked out just fine. To God be the glory!

Onome: What is the place of God in choosing a partner?

Victoria: God is the author of marriage. Any relationship that will not become a snare must be God’s idea. Even with the partner that God gives you, there are lines to straighten out, not to talk of jumping into it all by yourself…

David: The thing is that no man knows himself fully, not to talk of another person. Even if you court a lady for 20 years, you still don’t get to know an inch of what she is. So, why not take the short-cut; go through her Maker who knows all about her? He calibrated her being so He is the best person to tell you if it is safe to marry some lady or not. Furthermore, God knows your capacity as a person. He gives you the partner that your faith and desire can walk with. No one is perfect, but if you choose without His leading, the probability to choose the one your faith cannot walk with is incalculable. Thus, God is not to be an after-thought after choosing someone, but the One Who directs your heart into what to do. Not all good, godly, born-again ladies are right for one o! so we must not be fooled into gambling with our marital lives.

Onome: so David and Victoria, How did you keep yourselves while dating? How did you abstain from sex, what was your secret?

David: My wife is the best person to answer this

Victoria: (smiles) Honestly, God kept us. We were determined from the onset to keep ourselves. Our father in the Lord, Reverend Paul Debo Adeyemi told us when we just started, that the lady should be at the driver’s side. I sat comfortably at the driver’s side ooo! Our Reverend further advised us that whenever we were alone, we should beware of tempting situations. We were able to achieve this. Whenever I go visiting my single fiance, I would sleepover at someone else’s place instead of his, because we were wise enough not to trust ourselves prodigally. Sex is worth waiting for. Thus, it is unwise to rush into it.

Onome: Hmmm.. Thanks, guys. The last question. What’s your advise to singles who are waiting?

Victoria: I will put it in one sentence and that sums it up; It is good to wait for God’s time because His time is the best.

David:Firstly, relax! Build a relationship with God first. Don’t start emergency prayer life when you’re looking for a partner. The God you cannot hear when you’re deciding which cloth to wear, you can never hear when deciding whom to marry.

John Piper’s daughter once said, “A girl should get so lost in God that a man has to know God to find her.” That ought to be everyone’s maxim. Just get lost in loving God, you will be found by a lover of God.

Onome: It has been a great time with you guys. Thank you for your time, we do appreciate you.

David and Victoria: Onome,  It is an honour, we appreciate the opportunity to share our story!

Onome: Oh, happy birthday guys, God bless and increase you on all sides.

David and Victoria: Onome, we appreciate. Amen. Thank you.

CONCLUSION

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart;  do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do,  and he will show you which path to take”. (Proverbs 3:5-6) NLT

There are days it gets overwhelming, I know being single is not fun when you see everyone around you getting engaged or married but God is not done with you. Let this Love story encourage you in your wait, I’ve known Victoria for more than 15 years and I know her to be so committed and faithful to God’s work and God blessed her with the best.

David had to submit his will and desire to God and God the perfect fit for his purpose and assignment. He had to allow God to teach him how to love this special woman. David has been my friend for more than 10 years and each time we talk about love and marriage, he was never worried because he believed God had his best interest at heart.

You think God is late, He is not. He is busy writing your love story, be patient and trust His timing.

I look forward to sharing your story.

PS: Don’t forget to show our couple some love in the comment section, it’s their birthday let’s wish them well.

You have my love,

Onome.

CONDEMNED TO DIE

“He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying.” (Mathew 28:6) NLT

Life feels so hard, nothing is working and I just want to die.

Those were my words, I said that for so many years. I thought of suicide a lot of times but I never dared to try it, I was thirsty for affection and I desperately needed someone to love me. I cried myself to sleep so many nights and maybe no one loves me after all.

The church was somewhere I found myself because I had no choice, when I heard people share testimonies about God and how he spoke to them, I was jealous because I wanted what they had.

I read the bible every night because momma would ask if I had my quiet time, I enjoyed reading the stories other parts were boring as far as I was concerned. Where was this God who did all these things recorded in the bible? I had a lot of questions but who would answer them.

That was my story that was me. The one who didn’t deserve love and mercy, the one condemned to die. The devil reminded me of my pains but all Christ had to do was show me Calvary where he bled for me. He brought me freedom and grace.

Thank God the story did not end at Calvary, he was taken down to the tomb and on the third day, He resurrected!!!

Condemned to die

I can’t contain my joy that he arose. He went to hell and fought for my freedom, he defeated death so that I won’t die, he defeated sicknesses and diseases that I might live in total health. He took the fall just for me.

It took me years to understand what love meant and when I did my life took a new turn. I could understand those testimonies I was jealous about because when you come in contact with the father of light you radiate his light.

Today, all you have to do is thank God that Jesus has risen!

Your salvation is eternal.

CONCLUSION

“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) NLT

I understand what pain means, I know what it means to desperately want approval but the truth is you have been looking for answers in the wrong places. Love has been knocking and all you have to do is open the door.

No one can love you the way Christ loves you. He paid the price for our freedom, he purchased us with His blood and gave us victory.

Let me end this article with the lyrics of my favourite hymn.

The strife is o’er, the battle done by Francis Pott

  1. The strife is o’er, the battle done;

The victory of life is won;

The song of triumph has begun:

Alleluia!

  • The pow’rs of death have done their worst;

But Christ their legions has dispersed;

Let shouts of holy joy outburst:

Alleluia!

  • The three sad days are quickly sped;

He rises glorious from the dead;

All glory to our risen Head:

Alleluia!

  • He closed the yawning gates of hell;

The bars from heav’n’s high portals fell;

Let hymns of praise His triumphs tell:

  1. Alleluia!

Culled from (https://library.timelesstruths.org/music/The_Strife_Is_Oer_the_Battle_Done/)

When you are searching for love, just look at Calvary!

I recently started a podcast called “Naked” it centres on relationships and inspirations. Check it out and let me know what you think, click here to listen to my latest podcast and if you would love to download click here.

Thank you, family!!!!!!

You have my love.

Onome.

OUR ZERO NAIRA WEDDING

I almost forgot I promised God, that if He sponsors our wedding, I would share the testimony. When my husband reminded me last week, I knew the time had come to share our wedding testimony.

It was my birthday and I was meditating with the father asking Him what He would have me do this New Year and he said marriage was the next assignment. I was genuinely surprised because I felt I wasn’t ready and kept asking myself where the money for the wedding ceremony would come from. That same day, my lover proposed and I knew God meant business. After the Euphoria of the proposal, I had to ask my lover how we were going to do the wedding because there was no money anywhere and we had no rich uncles to run to.

It wasn’t just that, my lover had taken a loan from a microfinance bank about four months ago that he was still repaying and it didn’t make any sense that we would choose to get married when he was not done paying the loan but all that mattered to us was that God had given a go ahead and we were ready to obey.

After the date was chosen, we started praying and each time we prayed God kept speaking to us that he was with us. I panicked, I was scared but each time I prayed I felt this peace that passes human understanding.

Three months to the wedding, it wasn’t looking like it; then the Holy Spirit started teaching me about confessions. He told me to write what I wanted for the wedding. He also gave me Philippians 4:19 (MSG) and I went ahead to write my confessions. I started making the confessions morning and night. Each time I made the confessions I felt this new level of confidence. Two months to the wedding, it still wasn’t looking like it. Our invitation cards were not ready and it felt as though the wedding would be postponed.

My faith began to shake but my lover kept encouraging me. Watching him make plans even without the finances boosted my faith; so I took the backseat to see what God would do. I remember having a vigil with my close friends I call sisters and we prayed together. A word of prophecy came out that God would supply all my needs and I should just relax. I started praising God knowing He would come through.

We were preparing to travel home for our counselling session when the Lord told me to sow a seed. I didn’t feel like it because I already had a budget for the money at hand and as at that time, I had not bought anything and the wedding was just in two months. I called my husband and he told me to go ahead with the seed that if we wanted God to sponsor the wedding, then we have to be obedient 100%. I sowed the seed in faith and by January God started coming through.

The finances started coming in and for every monetary gift we received, we paid our tithes and in some cases, we even paid 20%. It felt stupid but since we wanted God to be the sponsor, we had to trust Him completely. Our invitations came out a month to our wedding and honestly we still had a lot to do. Needs kept coming and God kept providing. The wedding day was getting closer and God kept sending men our way to help us. Our parents kept sharing testimonies every day of how God was sending men to help and support them, they would tell us how this person dropped this and how that person donated that. I was just so dumbfounded because indeed God came through.

Two days to the wedding, my mum called me to tell me that we were yet to buy drinks. I was worried but I knew God that started the good work will complete it so I went on to sort some other needs and I completely forgot but God did it again.

My mum was telling me after the wedding how God showed up that He didn’t just provide the drinks, there was even more than enough funds to sort out every other need.

It still felt like a dream. God had gone ahead of us to make all the crooked paths straight. He made the two days glorious and He alone deserves all the glory. I also want to say a big thank you to all our friends who decided to take up the ministry of intercession; we could feel your prayers and a lot of them also made sacrifices. We had friends who gave their all, cancelled all their appointments and travelled from Thursday till Sunday. We love you guys passionately.

We enjoyed the gift of men and God showed Himself faithful indeed.

CONCLUSION

“God is not a man that He should lie, Nor the son of man that He should repent.

Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has He spoken and will He not make it good and fulfil it?” (Numbers 23:19) Amplified bible

Planning a wedding for us was a step of faith; all we did was obey God. What is that assignment God is asking you to do or is He even telling you to get married but the present circumstances does not look like it?

Our wedding is proof that God never fails. Our resources were not enough but he multiplied our little and gave us abundance. The journey of faith requires obedience and complete trust in God knowing that He will do what He says.

If your wedding is around the corner and you are trusting God please don’t give up and at the same time don’t try to impress anyone. I tried my best not to put my husband under any pressure because I didn’t want him angry and cranky after the wedding.

We planned with what we had and God surpassed our imaginations. I don’t know what you are trusting God for but let our testimony be a proof that there is a God who never fails and with Jesus in your boat, you can smile at the storm. When it feels tough, keep praising and dancing, that weapon confuses the enemy.

God never fails.

If you missed our love story click here to read it.

You have our love!

Onome and Daniel

OUR PRE-WEDDING SHOOT

When Love happens you can’t deny and Let’s just say Love happened to me!

our pre-wedding shoot will definitely have you smiling, the wait is always worth it.

Enjoy our pictures and click here to read our love story


the chara wedding

The interesting part of the shoot is that we had fun!

the chara wedding
The chara wedding
the chara wedding

credits

Photography: @upfrontphotography

Makeup:@arikeglamhouse

White dress: @the7thbrooche

black dress: @bodacouture

suit and shirt: @xclusive_bbacouture

LOVE SO DIVINE: THE CHARA WEDDING

Hi family,

Forgive me, I know it has been a while.  I have been up to a number of things; reason I’ve been AWOL.

I have got news!

Your baby girl is getting married!!!

I am about to give you all the juicy details of our love story.

HOW WE MET

I took a decision to be single until the Lord sends my man (see my book, ‘Single Without Wrinkle’, for the full details). I wasn’t ready for a relationship, I was just enjoying my waiting season. During that period, I had been praying for a job. I finally got invited for an interview in one of the companies I applied to. The D-Day came and I aced the interview. I got called to resume work on a Tuesday morning. Upon my arrival on resumption day, I was asked to wait for the HR; that was when I met Daniel.

While waiting for the HR, this handsome dark-skinned young man walked up to me and said ‘hello’ amidst smiles. Although I wasn’t friendly, he however went on to introduce himself with the smile sculpted on his face (oh! he had such a cute smile). I told him my name and mentioned I was there to see the HR.

The HR finally arrived and guess what? I got sent back home because I was wearing a jean (the tomboy in me decided to embarrass me that day). I resumed the next morning, officially dressed and who did I meet….again? Daniel! As usual, he smiled and this time around, I smiled back as I was in a better mood. I overheard him talking about a Lecrae concert and how he didn’t want to miss the programme. In the course of the conversation, he mentioned being a member of Covenant Christian Center. That was all I needed to hear as I had just recently started listening to Pastor Poju and looked forward to being under his ministration live.

I asked for his number in a bid to go to church with him on Sunday and that was how we got talking. We went to church together as planned and became good friends. We talked about the bible and sometimes prayed together, all I saw in him was a “brother”.

I don’t know how it happened but I knew I started developing feelings for my so called ‘brother.’ I rejected it. I even took it a step further by praying and fasting. I kept telling God to remove the feelings but the more I prayed, the more it grew. Eventually, I had to call my spiritual father who told me to stop fighting but surrender it back to God.

I couldn’t run away because we worked in the same company and that was also a reason why I didn’t want the feelings to grow. I didn’t want to date someone I would see every day. I started avoiding him but he would always come around. One day, he told me we needed to talk.

We agreed to meet at Coldstone creamery. That day, he said to me  “Onome Omodara you are a treasure, you are like that bible passage that says a man sells all he has just to buy the treasure, but Onome I need time” I can’t forget those words. If you have read ‘There was a girl’, you will understand why those words meant a lot to me. I got home and cried. No one had ever said that to me. I had been told I am smart, beautiful, and intelligent but treasure? That hit me.

On the 2nd of May 2018, he officially asked me out. He didn’t ask me to be his girlfriend; he told me to be his wife. I was shocked and kept wondering what he saw in me. I told him to give me a month and he never pressured me. I prayed and waited for confirmation. I wasn’t ready to go through another cycle of heartbreak so I wanted to be sure.

On the 29th of May 2018, I said yes to him because it felt so right; I was at peace. Everything the Lord had said to me during my waiting season was apt when we started dating.

Daniel was intentional about our relationship; his love for me was so obvious. He was always willing to make sacrifices. There were days I thought we would break up but he would always say to me “Onome, I am not loving you by my own strength, mine would fail but God is my strength”. Daniel has been my safe place. Challenges have come our way but this man stood by me. This man prays with me and for me. He believes in my vision. He is God sent!

THE PROPOSAL

It was my birthday and my boss had told me she was throwing a birthday dinner for me and I should invite my close friends (I was surprised but happy to have a party). The day came and I saw my sister from Ibadan at the dinner; she appeared like a thief in the night (Fam, I was surprised). My friends came around and we were really having fun.

The waiter came in and said I had a special order, I opened and it was a ring! I wanted to run away (where was I running to sef?) The man of my dreams went down one knee asking me to marry him.

It was surreal. It showed that the wait is always worth it.

I have said enough.

 I interviewed my man and he has something to tell you

Enjoy

Tell us something about yourself

I am a graduate of computer science from the great Tai Solarin University of Education. Obviously I’m a Christian (smile). I am the first born from a family of four. I am passionate about Christ, my career and whatever I set my mind to do. I am a focused and purpose driven person with great leadership capacity. I see myself as a servant-leader as I enjoy taking up responsibilities irrespective of any position I am in.

At what point were you sure Onome was the one?

The chara wedding

(Deep sigh!) Well, it’s not like I heard a voice from heaven or something “spectacular” just like the days of Adam (smile), when something is right, you just know; the spirit bears witness remember. I don’t mean to sound too spiritual but pardon me; that is my default. Like the saying goes “Opposite attracts”. Onome is a “wokilumo” kinda person to put it in English, you will always notice her when she enters a room as oppose to my kinda nature; I am a reserved person. So I saw in her a woman that together we can do great things for Christ.

Onome is outspoken without being rude and very intelligent. Since men will always look at the outward, Onome is beautiful to behold and young at heart. Above all, I saw in Onome a woman that can help “womb” a vision and birth great dreams. A woman strong in the things that I seemed to be weak in.

What makes Onome special to you as a person?

(Deep breath) Permit me to keep the details to myself (smiles). But really, when you truly love someone you may not have a “special” reason for loving him/her. You just “apape” (add them together) them. Sometimes what makes somebody special to you could be the strength they exhibit that wowed your weakness. Many ladies have done wonderful things for me but the core of who she is, outclassed them all!

How do you feel about getting married?

CAPITAL MIXED FEELINGS (laughs) but I look forward to it.

What’s your most exciting memory about her?

The one I am yet to experience with her because every moment with her is a blessing.

THE CHARA WEDDING

We decided to use the chara wedding as our hashtag because we wanted a word that depicted exactly how we felt and “JOY” was the perfect word. Chara is a Greek word that means Joy.

CONCLUSION

“He hath made everything beautiful in his time” (Ecclesiastes 3:11a)

God is very intentional and each time I look at Daniel I am just reminded of God’s love. People have asked me how I feel about getting married and all I can say is “I am grateful”. If you know my story you will understand that God is faithful.

I don’t know how you feel right now but I need you to know that God has not forgotten you. Your marriage is going to happen and it’s going to be a testimony!

I look forward to sharing your story.

You have my love.

Onome.

IFY: THE TRUTH ABOUT LOVE AND WEDDINGS

Her aura speaks peace, her intelligence and depth got me attracted and I asked myself “who is this girl?”. From the moment I heard her speak, I knew she had to be my friend. Ify is not your regular tech lady; she is an amazing personality.  We got talking the first time we had to work on a project. The passion she puts in her career is applaudable.

I was surprised when I heard she was getting married; not because she is too young but because she was just too calm to be preparing for a wedding. I wondered what her secret was and even after her wedding, she was still glowing.

I sat down with Ify one beautiful afternoon after her honeymoon and we had a chat about her wedding preparations and the place of love in relationships.

Take a bottle of cold Fanta and sip, as we have a chat with Ify

ONOME:  Tell us a little about yourself

IFY: I am Ify N. Ebelebe, a tech enthusiast. I am an individual who loves to learn and apply new skills. I am quiet when surrounded with people I’m not familiar with but jovial with close pals. I love simplicity and I also enjoy my space.

ONOME: At what point in your life did you start thinking about your marriage?

IFY: You can call me a geek but what matters to me is learning new skills and applying it, so marriage wasn’t on the table for me in my undergraduate days but after I finished school I had to ask myself what I wanted from life and while thinking about that, I knew someday I would get married. It’s safe to say I started thinking of marriage a year after my Undergraduate days.

ONOME: How did you meet your husband?

IFY: We attended the same University but never talked nor greeted.  We met again during NYSC at a conference organized by NCCF. We only greeted and parted ways. Not until we met at the wedding of a University colleague, where he sat on the same table I sat with other colleagues. He cracked jokes and made everyone laugh. We got talking after the wedding and exchanged phone numbers and the rest they say is history.

ONOME: When did you become certain he was the one you wanted to spend the rest of your life with?

IFY: That’s a very interesting question Onome and very important. Love is very important but at the same time it is not the only thing you need to be convinced. I became certain he was the one because amidst the love his presence brought an unexplainable joy and peace and his dreams and goals align with mine.

ONOME: How did you feel the first time you were going to meet his parents?

IFY: Meeting the parents, that’s a lot. We are from different tribes so I was really nervous and also excited that he was going to meet my parents. I initially felt my parents would say no because of the tribal difference but it was a different story entirely. They love him and his own parents welcomed me with love too.

ify

ONOME: How is it like preparing for a wedding ceremony?

IFY: Preparing for a wedding ceremony can be stressful especially when you have no event planner.  I didn’t have the chance to shop during the week because of work. I only had weekends to do my shopping and planning. I tried as much as possible not to be excessive in spending since it was just going to be a day event; I could be very strict when it comes to budgeting. I stuck strictly to what I needed and nothing more. I wrote a list of all I needed in order of priority and it really helped in managing my finances.

ONOME: If you had the chance to change something about your wedding day what would it be?

IFY: My wedding day? Absolutely nothing! I had the time of my life and I was able to manage my finances well. It’s a day I can’t forget!

ONOME: What’s your advice to every bride preparing for her big day?

IFY: Spend wisely. This is very important. Don’t put your fiancé under pressure. Don’t try to please anyone because after that day you are left alone with your spouse to face the music. Cut your coat according to your cloth. Do not panic before the D-day because that day will come and pass and finally make sure you enjoy your day. Don’t allow anything to get you angry or upset. You are the bride! it’s your day, so don’t forget to smile.

ONOME: What is the place of God in marriage?

IFY: The way I see it is that He is the centre of a successful marriage. He is a very important factor and without Him, there is no successful marriage!

ONOME: What do you love about your husband?

IFY: A lot but these are on top of my list; He is neat, jovial and very caring.

ONOME: How does it feel adjusting to the new life of being married?

IFY: I see it as a learning process. It’s been fun trying new things. Adjusting is the big thing but I’m getting there but above all, it’s been an interesting ride so far; I’m really enjoying it.

ONOME: Thank you so much Ify, it’s been great talking to you. Thank you for being so real and honest.

IFY: The pleasure is mine, Onome. Thank you for having me.

CONCLUSION

“Don’t worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done.” Philippians 4: 6 (NLT).

Weddings are beautiful moments that can’t be erased and at the same time, pressures would always come around but you need to stop worrying. One of the things that attracted Ify to me was that state of rest she had. For a bride who had no event planner, she felt too relaxed; but this lady just knew God would come through and He sure did. Her wedding was a massive success.

Dear couples to be, you need to plan and relax. Don’t try to please anyone. Weddings will come and go but the marriage should be your priority. Everyone would go home but your partner is all you have; so don’t lose each other while planning your big day.

Don’t forget to speak into existence what you want for your marriage, confess positive things and close your ears to all negativity. Somehow everybody has the best advice for you when you are getting married, but you need to be sensitive and allow the Holy Spirit to guide you.

To everyone preparing for their big day, it’s going to be a glorious day.

ALSO READ: LOVE SO BEAUTIFUL

Singles asking when, God is here already, He is writing the script in trusting Him, I look forward to sharing your love story.

Cheers.

Your friend and sister,

Onome Omodara.

He Is not into me

Have you ever wanted someone so bad but the person is not looking in your direction? Or has your love interest put you in the friend zone? I know that feeling; let me tell you my story.

He is not into me

I had eyes for him from afar and the first day we spoke, he said I was intelligent; this made me melt. Concentration was impossible whenever I was around him. I knew guys like him would never have anything to do with girls like me (I was first rejected by my low self-esteem). I was a nerd and a bookworm. I didn’t like parties so I was convinced he would never like me.

The first time we met, I liked him. We had a conversation on books and feminism, which led him to say I am Intelligent. He was impressed by my ability to hold an intelligent conversation, so he asked for my phone number. I knew he liked me but he was scared his friends would laugh at him if he had anything to do with me.

I desired him but we became platonic friends. I was that friend he would speak with for long hours on the phone but would avoid in public. I was quite comfortable being in the shadows; at least I was the girl he spent more than 3 hours over the phone with.

I wanted more but I only appealed to him intellectually. I was upset when he started dating a friend of mine. (She was sexy and cute; no surprise he went for her). I stopped picking his calls. I sent him a message when I found out he was with my friend but he didn’t reply to my message, so I let him be.

Some years later we reconnected and became good friends. We had both become mature and knew what we wanted from life. The problem was; my feelings were rekindled and this time it was intense. I wanted to deny my feelings but the more I tried, the stronger it became.

We had become best of friends and I didn’t want to lose the friendship, so I decided to play it cool, but deep down; I was in love. I prayed about it and heard a ‘yes’ (I actually wasn’t expecting any other answer). I started praying that God would convince him to ask me out but the prayer never got answered. I had to summon the courage to ask him.

I asked him what we were doing because we ended every phone call with “I love you” and he would call me sweet names. I needed clarity. He told me he loved me but was still praying about us.

I waited patiently but couldn’t pretend any longer. I needed to be sure where we were headed as I had no time to waste. I called one evening and told him we needed to talk. We spoke at length then he gave me the shock of my life. He said, “Bunmi, God is not saying anything about us”. I couldn’t hold back the tears. ‘What was wrong with me?’ I thought my days of singleness were behind but they just started.

I went back to God for healing. That was when I discovered it was never God’s idea but mine. I concluded on God’s behalf. It was a painful experience but looking back now, I am grateful it did not work out. We are still friends but it took me a long time to realize that we could never have worked out as a couple because our purposes do not align but I was willing to compromise because my feelings for him were so deep.

CONCLUSION

Here’s the thing; I know it hurts that he is not looking at your direction and that he sees you as a sister and a friend but you can’t force a man to love you! If he is meant to be yours, he will come around. You have to trust God to give you the best you deserve.

He is not into me

“Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.” (Ecclesiastes 3: 11) NLT.

A lot of times we are in a hurry and we allow impatience to fuel our desires and influence our decisions but we have to be patient to get the best. I understand that you like him. He makes your heart skip when he is around and you can’t control your emotions. My sister, you need to relax.

There is time for everything. Relationships are way beyond butterflies in the belly. The one God has for you is always worth the wait. You don’t have to embarrass yourself and make stupid decisions to make a man love you. 

He is not into me

You can’t force relationships; it has to happen naturally. You need to stop worrying your head about the how and the when. Let God write your love story because He has your best interest at heart and He loves you so much so, you can be rest assured he will give you the best.

I know it hurts, but you have to let him go so you can embrace God’s best for you. Begin your healing process and allow God to give you the best at the right time.

RELATED: GOD, WHEN?

I look forward to sharing your love story!

Your friend and sister, 

Onome Omodara

IN LOVE WITH A CHURCH BOY

 

While growing up, I was eager to date a church boy: I felt they would be kind and know how to treat a woman right, but that mindset changed as I grew older. I encountered the bad eggs and was petrified to realize; that some approved sex before marriage.

I have had my share of wrong relationships; the scariest heartbreak I had was from a guy I met in church. After the experience, I made up my mind I was done with church boys. As a matter of fact, I didn’t mind dating an unbeliever: I told myself I would drag him to church, but God had better plans for me. Interestingly, I got to meet a church boy about two years later and I am passionately in love with this man.

This article is not about me. I know there are people like me, who gave up on church boys, and some, who would rather meet a man in a club, than in church. I am not judging your decisions but before you give up on godly men, you need to read this…

THE EPHESIANS 5 MAN

“In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself” (Ephesians 5:28).

The reason a lot of us are dealing with heartbreaks is because, we keep doing things God didn’t ask us to do. God never asked you to date a church boy. It wasn’t written anywhere in the scriptures, that you have to marry a man you meet in church.

The church is like a hospital: some are sick, some are recovering while others have fully recovered. Therefore, anybody can be a church boy, but it takes more than going to church to be an Ephesians 5 man. It took me a while to understand that, when you choose to wait on God, He will give you the best.

The Ephesians 5 man is a rare breed. In simple terms: he is “the kingdom man”. This man doesn’t just go to church: he loves God passionately and is pursuing a relationship with the Lord. This man loves his woman, sees her as the helper for his journey to purpose, pursues and covers her as Christ does.

There is a difference between a nice man and a kind man. Also, there is a difference between a good man and a godly man. The fact that a man is good, does not translate to him being godly. The real difference is that a godly man does not make decisions without consulting the King, and every day, he is pursuing after righteousness and holiness. Interestingly, this man is even asking the father how to love you right. He is not just a random man: he is a gift!

Stop stressing yourself over meeting the right man: hand over your love life to the father and I assure you, that He will make your paths cross. You may not meet him in church, but when you do, you will be grateful you waited; because the Ephesians 5 man, is worth the wait!

At the end of the day, the Ephesians 5 man is a church boy, who loves the Lord and is committed to the growth of the kingdom.

I pray for everyone waiting on the lord for their Ephesians 5 man, and for those searching for their proverbs 31 woman: may the father order your steps, and at the right time, your paths will cross. While you are waiting, keep pursuing God. The best is here already.

Cheers to your beautiful love story!

Onome Omodara

Onomewrites@gmail.com

THE LOVE ADVENTURE WITH SAPELE JACKSON

I was trying to check through Instagram to see what’s happening and all, then my eye caught something. It’s my friend Jackson he is getting married and I was so excited. I could be hopelessly romantic on some occasions and I get so excited when I have to share love stories, it actually proves the faithfulness of God.

I reached out to Jackson and he was more than ready to share his love story. I must appreciate his sincerity and humility to share this story. Love is a very beautiful thing when you find the right one and if there is one thing I have to come to discover is the fact that God writes the best stories.

Do me a favour, grab a bottle of Fanta and let’s go on this adventure together. I can assure you that you are in for a great ride!

 

Onome: let me start by saying a very big thank you for creating time out of your busy schedule to do this. What makes you special as an individual?

Jackson: You are welcome Onome, it’s a big honour. What makes me special? I would say new birth in Christ which has opened me up to a unique identity with Christ and eventually led to divine election and calling.

Onome: hmm, tell us something about you.

Jackson: I’m SAPELE Egwonor Jackson, a Nigerian citizen from Delta state, okpara inland in ethiope-east LGA to be precise. I’m a graduate of Sociology and Anthropology from Nnamdi Azikwe University Awka. I am currently based in Yala LGA of Cross River State, serving as a full-time pastor with Living faith church, Aka winners chapel under the mentorship and fatherhood of Bishop David O. Oyedepo.

Onome: Tell us about your waiting season

Jackson: Early years on campus I began to pray about my life partner.  In my 200level, I made a silent prayer, asking God never to make me get married to a person that will bring dissatisfaction and lack of fulfilment to my life.  I tried a couple of relationship two precisely but they didn’t work out, in all God was busy orchestrating my path I believe.

I decided to pursue purpose, I obeyed the call of God to go into full-time ministry and in my first assignment, I understood the real meaning of help meet. So I will say my waiting season was a period I focused on pursuing God’s divine purpose for my life.  I believe it is purpose first before life partner.  From experience, I discovered it is easier to discover your life partner while pursuing God’s purpose.

Onome: Thank you for that, so how did you meet your wife?

Jackson: As I said, I met her on my first missionary assignment.  The very first day I reported, it was obvious to me that I have found my missing rib.  I met her in church. The very first day I stepped into the church I was posted to serve,  she was the one leading the opening worship,  I couldn’t stop looking……. Onome, you know the rest.

Onome: (laughs) how did you know she was the one?

Jackson: Hmmm, sincerely, it took some time before I finally accepted what my heart desired.  I was trying to heal from the past relationship, I wanted enough time, but God had a better plan for me,  funny enough after few months of praying, seeking counsels, thinking(i thought more) and observing her as a friend, I discovered she’s the exact person I have been praying for right from my campus days.  I had peace, lots of Joy and I was always satisfied and fulfilled talking with her.  As friends, we could talk for several hours.  I just knew and to crown it up, God gave a series of scriptures to back up my convictions.

Onome: How is it like preparing for your wedding?

Jackson: It’s exciting and fun-filled. Going out together for shopping,  and other arrangements.  Though we are doing more of reading marriage books,  to gather adequate and sufficient knowledge for the life journey together.

Onome: What is the place of God in choosing a partner?

Jackson: The place of God is irreplaceable. When God is absent in a believers choice for a life partner, then someone or something else is present. I have always had the notion years ago, that God knows the future better than us.  He knows the internal workings of everyman better than even our parents.  God knows if someone is pretending or not, no man can deceive God, no matter how you think someone is good for a spouse, you will need to seek God’s face for approval and confirmation. Venturing without God’s leading and His backing is an unknown and unsafe journey.

Onome: What’s your advice to singles who are waiting?

Jackson: Your waiting time shouldn’t be wasted time, locate your God-given purpose for living and venture to it as led, that’s the best way to wait.  Adam the first man was on his divine assignment and his wife met him there. Ignore anxiety and rest on God’s promises, the delay is never a denial. It doesn’t take time, it only takes God.

Onome: Thank you for this deep revelation, when is the wedding and I hope we are all invited?

Jackson: Of course everyone is invited if they can come. The wedding takes place on the 16th of March at cross-river.

Onome: Thank you so much for your time.

Jackson: Anytime Onome, it’s a big honour.

 

Conclusion

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding” Proverbs 3: 5 (NKJV).

There is always time for everything and God has it all figured out. All you need to do is trust His timing and leading. Sometimes, the road is lonely and feels so long but you can be so sure God has got you and He is writing your story. Don’t try to steal the pen from Him, be patient because when God aligns you with your partner it is a forever kind of love story.

Congratulations to Jackson and Mercy, we wish them a happy married life!

Trust the father and enjoy the season, I look forward to sharing your love story.

Your friend and sister,

Onome Omodara