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

Part 1: Seizing Opportunities

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With permission, I have extracted this picture-quote from a website called Quote Master. All rights reserved worldwide.

Several years ago when I was plump, my brother Bob Njinju was fond of commenting on my weight. He once remarked during a family meeting in 2016 that I probably weighed over 100 kilograms. During another family meeting later on in 2016, he bluntly told me that I was gaining more weight.

Since I have always desired to be lean and athletic, I didn't like the comments that Bob was making about my weight. I thought of informing him the next time he remarked about my plumpness that I would lose weight once I found a fulfilling job. As it happened, I never got the opportunity to inform him so.

Looking back, I am glad I never informed Bob that I would lose weight once I found a fulfilling job. Why? Because I came to realize that I first had to change on the inside before my outside circumstances could change. I also realized that I had here at home plenty of opportunities for personal development. Before I tell you about those opportunities, allow me to say something brief about my past.

All my life, I have never worried about where my next meal will come from or who will pay my bills. Somehow, my family has always met my needs. I have therefore been spared from the stress that some people go through as they struggle to make ends meet.

Perhaps due to the way my family has always met my needs, I never acquired the spirit of hard work that I have seen in the people who have to juggle multiple jobs in order to feed their families. Not surprisingly, I morphed into a lazy and gluttonous young man when I was at the university in JKUAT in 2008. And that's how I gained excess weight.

After dropping out of JKUAT, I would try again and again to remould myself into an early-rising and hardworking young man. But guess what! My efforts would come to a dead end as I would give up on my resolutions to be diligent in the face of adversity or mood change.

The only virtue that I grew up with and which has been my saving grace is the habit of reading avidly. I used to study a lot when I was in primary and secondary school. Even during my university days, I often had my nose buried in a book in my free time.

Having grown up as an avid reader, I have found it easy to carry on with reading in my adult life. These days, I can devour two books in a week, something many people find it hard to do. Maybe in the same way I have struggled to be a hard worker, so do many people struggle to be avid readers.

And you know what? I have access to plenty of books, magazines and newspapers that my father used to buy for us when my brothers and I were growing up. In addition to that, I have a laptop, a piano keyboard and an internet connection which I can use to hone my talents in music and writing.

One thing I have learnt in life is to never compare my life to that of others, for we are all facing different circumstances and opportunities. So instead of laboring at someone else's business, I have found it wise to use my time to hone my talents in music and writing while my parents are still meeting my needs.

But I am alive to the fact that my parents will not always be there to meet my needs. They will eventually get sick and die (ouch!). That's why I have resolved to work really hard at becoming a great writer and musician before it's too late.

For the past three years, I have been engaged in reading those books, magazines and newspapers that I have access to here at home. As a result of that reading, my life has become more exciting. What's more, I have lost the excess weight that my brother Bob used to tease me about.

It was foolish of me to think of informing Bob that I would lose weight once I found a fulfilling job. I am saying it was foolish since I had access to plenty of reading materials that could occupy my time. And my beloved reader, those reading materials are the opportunities for personal development I am talking about.

By the way, when I was a big fan of the WWF wrestling program back in the '90s, I noted the program used to warn its audience not to try at home what they watched on the telly. Similarly, I warn you not to try what I am doing in your home if you have a family to feed and bills to pay. Just get a job and don't forget to seize the unique opportunities that come your way. Ciao!

RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed the above story on seizing opportunities, you might also enjoy another one on "Blooming Where Planted" which I wrote more than six years ago. Just click on that link in blue to dive straight into the story.


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Why We Should Be Humble

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With permission, I have extracted this picture-quote from a blog called Sleeping Angel. All rights reserved worldwide.

Much has been said about the virtue of humility and the vice of pride. You've definitely heard of the biblical verse that says, "Before his downfall a man's heart is proud, but humility comes before honor." What you may not have heard is that humility is the only virtue Satan can't imitate.

As for me, I have always preferred being humble. It's just like me to be meek. One of the reasons that motivates me to remain humble these days is the uncertainty of the future. The fact that I don't know what may happen next week keeps me from becoming conceited. It also makes me dependent on God.

This is how I reason it out: I may boast today that I am healthy and full of life, only to be involved the following day in a road accident that leaves me physically disabled. Or I may be proud of owning a nifty Samsung Galaxy smartphone, only for it to fall in water while preparing a meal in the kitchen.

Another reason that motivates me to remain humble is the vast amount of knowledge I don't yet understand: in medicine, calculus, economics, accounting, aeronautical engineering, just to mention but a few fields. I also don't know how to speak French, Arabic, Chinese and many other languages. Neither do I possess skills in masonry, carpentry and tailoring. Lacking such knowledge and skills keeps me from boasting about what I know.

I wish everybody could follow my example and embrace humility. But unfortunately, I have seen so many proud people. For example when I was at JKUAT and at the University of Nairobi, two local institutions of higher learning that I attended but didn't graduate from, I encountered lecturers who were proud and arrogant. They acted as though they knew everything there was to know.

At JKUAT, one chemistry lecturer was so proud of his achievements that he asked us to google his name on the internet so that we could get a glimpse of what he had accomplished. He also talked pejoratively of Indians and verbally attacked a male student who had plaited his hair.

Then at the University of Nairobi (UoN), we had this political science lecturer who trash-talked a private university in downtown Nairobi, saying it was no match for UoN. The lecturer was so arrogant that he once commanded a female student to get out of his lecture for committing a minor infraction. During another lecture, he furiously tore a student's textbook because it was photocopied.

Another UoN lecturer, who taught us economics, also exhibited similar levels of pride and arrogance. He was fond of speaking so highly of Europeans and so lowly of Africans. And I will never forget the morning he castigated a fellow student for coughing in his class. When he tried to enlist my support in castigating the student, I refused to join in.

Far be it from me to judge those proud and arrogant lecturers but I wish they could realize that even though they possess a PhD in one or two fields, there is much they don't yet know. And not that I detest education but I think they should also realize there are college dropouts who are richer, happier and more successful than some PhD holders. Such realization could humble them.

This world is full of proud and arrogant people for shizzle. And they seem to know everything and to be in control of the world. But the truth is, it's God who is in charge of the world. And He favors the humble. I just like how the wonderful hymn of faith "Tell Out My Soul" puts it this way in its third verse:
Tell out, my soul, the greatness of His might!
Powers and dominions lay their glory by;
Proud hearts and stubborn wills are put to flight,
The hungry fed, the humble lifted high.
The uncertainty of the future, the much that I still don't know - these facts have made me resolve to remain humble should I attain my dream of becoming an internationally acclaimed blogger. Never will I boast of my success or parade my achievements on social media.

My beloved reader, I exhort you to also abhor pride and embrace humility. As author H. Jackson Brown Jr. quipped, "Be humble. A lot was accomplished before you were born." And always keep in mind that it is pride that caused Satan to fall from heaven, according to the Bible. That's all I am saying.

RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed the above story on why we should remain humble, you might also enjoy another one on "Developing Hope & Optimism" which I wrote about three years ago. Just click on that link in blue to dive straight 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)