Positive Quote For Today

"We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty."— Maya Angelou

Outwitting The Conman Within

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Most of us are aware that conmen exist. Some of us even know the tricks they use to steal money from people. But did you know that conning can come from within us?

Now, the conman within is of an entirely different nature. And his tricks are cleverly timed. He lurks, waiting for our weakest moments. And when those weak moments arise, he emerges and tells us in our minds through a voice within, "If there is someone who deserves to feel good, it's you."

He convinces us to do something we know is wrong so that we can feel better. If we happen to at first resist the temptation, the conman within adds, "No, don't mind the past or what people say. Just do it! This time it will be different."

When we finally succumb to the temptation, the conman within turns against us by tormenting us with guilt over what we have done. He condemns us by telling us we are bound to repeat the sin again, essentially telling us we are useless and worthless.

As if that's not enough, he starts to remind us of all the other sins and mistakes we have made in the past that are not related to the one he has conned us into doing. And the guilt that simmers within leaves us pleading, "When will this end?"

In the midst of that harrowing experience, we are left feeling ashamed and powerless, like what happened to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden after they ate the forbidden fruit. The story is in the book of Genesis.

The temptations that the conman within can tempt us into doing during our weakest moments are like having pre-marital or extra-marital sex. And he racks us with guilt over what we have done especially if the sex brings an unwanted child or a sexually transmitted disease.

The conman within can also tempt us to oversleep in the morning if we are feeling hopeless, disturbed or depressed. Now, that's a temptation that he has succeeded in tempting me for the past ten years. Okay, let me explain.

As I wrote in my previous story on this lovely blog of mine, I have struggled with oversleeping ever since I was in my second year at JKUAT in 2008. In the course of the year that ended two days ago (2018, that is), I discovered that the guilt I have felt many times for the past ten years was as a result of oversleeping till late in the morning. It took me a long time just to figure that out.

A lady-friend of mine I met on the internet and whose name I have forgotten once told me that nothing encourages depression like oversleeping. From my experiences in the past ten years, I would hasten to add that nothing encourages guilt like oversleeping. And the solution to overcoming the temptation to oversleep is to read something inspirational before going to bed at night or to find something fascinating to do after waking up in the morning.

I don't know about you but as for me, I am thinking that writing a story in the morning could work for me. So I have resolved that after making my bed in the morning, uttering the Lord's Prayer, stretching with rollers, cleaning my room, taking a shower and washing my clothes, I will be turning to writing a story to energize my spirits. I encourage you to dig into your talents and find something exciting to do each morning. It's an effective way of outwitting the conman within that tempts us to oversleep when we are not in good moods.

Also, strive to keep yourself happy as Max Ehrmann pointed out in his widely shared Desiderata. It's another effective way of outwitting the conman within. And how can we achieve lasting happiness? By counting our blessings regularly, reading a great book, listening to beautiful music, exercising our bodies, talking to a friend or just relaxing to reflect and meditate.


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My New Year Resolution

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With permission, I have extracted this picture-quote from Sayingimages.com. All rights reserved worldwide.

How have you began the new year? And have you set any new resolutions to observe and follow in the course of the year? Or have you long since given up on the idea of setting new resolutions after your previous ones backfired? As for me, never one to give up easily, I have set a new resolution to be getting out of bed at around 5:00 a.m. every morning come what may.

I had always been an early-riser during my primary and secondary school years and well into college. But beginning some time in 2008 when I was at the university in JKUAT, I defaulted on that good habit by getting out of bed late in the morning and sometimes in the afternoon. Since then, I have struggled to be an early-riser. Later on in this decade, I noted that I had trouble getting out of bed early in the morning if I went to bed in a bad mood the previous day.

Towards the end of 2017, I made a conscious decision to rise early everyday regardless of the mood I got into bed with the previous day. I succeeded in following that resolution for several months. But sometime in April or May 2018, I stopped getting out of bed early in the morning after I felt sick in the head for several days. After that, I was unable to summon the will to rise early again.

And you know what? In 2018 when I reverted to the bad habit of getting out of bed late in the morning, I made a startling discovery that with the bad habit came guilt feelings in my soul. And on most times, no amount of positive self-talk could wipe out the guilt feelings from my soul. That discovery is what has led me to set a new resolution of rising early every day at around 5.00am come rain, come sunshine.

Today, I effortlessly sprang out of bed as per my new resolution. And that's a great way to start the year. But in the course of 2019, God forbid, I may be confronted with mornings when the temptation to stay in between the sheets will be too much. I have resolved to overcome that temptation with all the might I can summon. And that will be an effective way of developing virtue because as someone said, character is the discipline to follow through with resolutions long after the excitement in which they were made has passed.

Already, I have asked God through prayers to help me should I be tempted to stay in bed after 5.00am. In addition to praying, I have sang to Him the following verse from a favourite hymn of mine:
Break temptation's fatal power,
Shielding [me] with guardian care,
Safe in every careless hour,
Safe from sloth and sensual snare;
Thou my Saviour,
Still my failing strength repair.
As I set the new resolution to rise before dawn each day of this year and as I ask God for His help in implementing that resolution, I have Dad as my role model. For as long as I have known him, Dad has always gotten out of bed early every morning regardless of how his previous day was or how his night has been. Besides instilling me with a learning spirit, early-rising is another trait I have come to admire in him, a trait I desire to also possess and pass on to my children if I ever get lucky to have some.

I believe once I succeed in rising early each day of this year, I will permanently develop that virtous habit of springing out of bed before dawn for the rest of my life. (Don't they say it takes 21 days to develop a habit?) And when I hit 81 years, God willing, I will look back on my life with pride and proclaim, as Thomas Jefferson once did, that the Sun has not found me in bed for the past 50 years. So help me God.

RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed this story on my new year resolution, you might also enjoy another one I wrote sometimes back on "Bliss. Strength. Love. Peace." Just click on that link in blue to dive into the story.


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Bible Quote

"Always be full of joy in the Lord; I say it again, rejoice! Let everyone see that you are unselfish and considerate in all you do... Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything; tell God your needs and don't forget to thank Him for His answers. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand."

~Phillipians 4:4-7 (TLB)

About the Author

Name: Thuita J. Maina
Nationality: Kenyan
Lives in: Kiserian, Rift Valley, Kenya
Mission: To inspire the world to godly living, one person at a time.

Just For Laughs

There was this drunkard named Azoge who loved drinking at Josiah's Bar. On being told a certain Hon. Nanga was flying to America to be conferred a law degree so that he could be admitted to the bar, Azoge replied, "Why fly all the way to America to be admitted to the bar while you can get into Josiah's Bar any time?"

The 7 Deadly Sins

  1. Pride
  2. Envy
  3. Gluttony
  4. Lust
  5. Anger
  6. Greed
  7. Sloth

Author's Note

I am learning to treat life as a journey, not a destination. So I am trying to enjoy each day as I anticipate to fulfill my dreams especially meeting my soulmate and traveling abroad. Tomorrow may never be mine.

Fun Facts

  1. The fear of having no cell-phone service, running out of battery, or losing sight of your phone is called Nomophobia, reportedly affecting 66% of people.
  2. A single Google search needs more computing power than it took to send Apollo 11 to the moon. The Apollo computer was less equipped than a modern toaster.
  3. Besides being some of the biggest names in the tech industry, HP, Apple, Google and Microsoft share another commonality. They all started in garages.
~Extracted from Codingforums.com

Health Tip

So many of us take for granted the wonderful construction of the human body and the workings of its various parts. Some of us even expect it to function efficiently with less than the minimum care and attention. Learn the much you can about your body and how the care of it can help to give you that greatest blessing of all - good health.

Wonders of the Modern World

  1. The Simplon Tunnel
  2. The Sky-scrapers of New York
  3. The Boulder Dam of Colorado
  4. The Panama Canal
  5. The Golden Gate Bridge
  6. The Taj Mahal at Agra in India
  7. The North Sea Oil Drilling Rigs

Great Example for Politicians

"My life in politics was a joy. I loved campaigns and I loved governing. I always tried to keep things moving in the right direction, to give more people a chance to live their dreams, to lift people's spirits, and to bring them together. That's the way I kept score."

~Bill Clinton

Scientific Marvels

  1. Space travel
  2. Heart surgery
  3. Fibre-optics communication
  4. Concorde
  5. Computers & Radios
  6. Anesthetics
  7. The atom bomb

My Supreme Desire

Although I'd like to be rich and famous, my supreme desire is to be radiant: to radiate health, cheerfulness, calm courage and goodwill. I wish to live without hate, guilt, worry, jealousy, cynicism and envy. I wish to be honest, natural, confident, clean in mind and body - ready to say "I do not know" if it be so and to treat all men with kindness - to meet any loss, failure, criticism and rejection unabashed and unafraid.

Greatest American Presidents

  1. Abraham Lincoln
  2. George Washington
  3. Thomas Jefferson
  4. Franklin Roosevelt
  5. Theodore Roosevelt
  6. Woodrow Wilson
  7. Andrew Jackson

Making Peace With the Past

"Dwell not on your past. Use it to illustrate a point, then leave it behind. Nothing really matters except what you do now in this instant of time. From this moment onwards you can be an entirely different person, filled with love and understanding, ready with an outstretched hand, uplifted and positive in every thought and deed."

~Eileen Caddy

Toughest Colleges to Get Into

  1. MIT
  2. Princeton
  3. Harvard
  4. Yale
  5. Stanford
  6. Brown
  7. Columbia

Why You Should Trust God

"Men and women who turn their lives over to God will find out that He can make a lot more out of their lives than they can. He will deepen their joys, expand their vision, quicken their minds, strengthen their muscles, lift their spirits, multiply their blessings, increase their opportunities and pour out peace."

~Ezra Taft Benson

The 7 Greatest Scientists

  1. Albert Einstein
  2. Isaac Newton
  3. Galileo Galilei
  4. Nikola Tesla
  5. Aristotle
  6. Archimedes
  7. Charles Darwin

You Matter

"Always be yourself. Never try to hide who you are. The only shame is to have shame. Always stand up for what you believe in. Always question what other people tell you. Never regret the past; it's a waste of time. There's a reason for everything. Every mistake, every moment of weakness, every terrible thing that has happened to you, grow from it. The only way you can ever get the respect of others is when you show them that you respect yourself and most importantly, do your thing and never apologize for being you."


The Most Industrialized Nations

  1. The United States
  2. Japan
  3. Germany
  4. France
  5. United Kingdom
  6. Italy
  7. Canada

Keys to Success

"...in his effort to withstand temptation, to economize, to exercise thrift, to disregard the superficial for the real - the shadow for the substance; to be great yet small, in his effort to be patient in the laying of a firm foundation; to so grow in skill and knowledge that he shall place his services in demand by reason of his intrinsic and superior worth. This is the key that unlocks every door of opportunity, and all others fail."

~Booker T. Washington

The 7 Social Sins

  1. Politics without principle
  2. Wealth without work
  3. Pleasure without conscience
  4. Knowledge without character
  5. Commerce without morality
  6. Worship without sacrifice
  7. Science without humanity

Cherish What You Love

"Cherish your visions, cherish your ideals, cherish the music that stirs in your heart, the beauty that forms in your mind, the loveliness that drapes your purest thoughts - for out of them will grow all heavenly environment, of these if you but remain true to them, your world will at last be built."~James Allen

The World's Largest Cities

  1. London in England
  2. New York in the United States
  3. Tokyo in Japan
  4. Berlin in Germany
  5. Chicago in the United States
  6. Shanghai in China
  7. Paris in France

Benefits of Optimism

"In terms of success, optimistic people out perform their pessimistic colleagues. Research shows that they are consistently promoted higher and make more money while working fewer hours than those who think pessimistically. Optimists also contribute more significantly to social progress. It is the optimists who start and run successful companies, who win elections and carry out reforms, and who make breakthroughs in the realms of science and technology."

~Pepe Minambo

The World's Greatest Lakes

  1. Caspian Sea in the Commonwealth of Independent States, C.I.S. (formerly U.S.S.R)
  2. Lake Superior in North America
  3. Victoria Nyanza in Central Africa
  4. Aral Sea in C.I.S.
  5. Lake Huron in North America
  6. Lake Michigan in North America

Demonstrating His Love

"Take your communication for instance - the way you address others. It ought to be with loving, gracious and edifying words. Never talk people down. Never use words that hurt and demean people. Communicate excellently with others without destroying their self-image or making them feel sorry for themselves. Talk to people in a way that they never forget the excellence of your words, the love and grace of Christ that you communicated. It's how God wants us to love."

~Dr. Chris Oyakhilome

World's Longest Rivers

  1. Missouri-Mississipi (U.S.)
  2. Amazon (Brazil)
  3. Nile (Egypt)
  4. Yangtse (China)
  5. Lena (Russia)
  6. Zaire (Central Africa)
  7. Niger (West Africa)