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

Mum Laid to Rest

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This is me outside Lee Funeral Home in Nairobi yesterday when I went to view and collect the body of my departed mother.

When Mum passed away last week and funeral arrangements began in earnest, I worried how I would deal with viewing her body and all the stuff that come with funerals. I also feared that I would put on weight due to staying at home most of the time while being fed sumptuous meals by the women who came to cook.

Everything turned out perfectly fine though. I felt bright and clear-headed throughout the mourning week. And I enjoyed interacting with the people who flocked to our home to condole with us.

We laid my beloved Mum to rest yesterday. The day began well for me. I woke up effortlessly early in the morning and travelled to Lee Funeral Home in Nairobi where we viewed and collected Mum's body.

Saddened by the sight of Mum's lifeless face through the opened section of her casket, I felt like crying but I stayed strong. Soon after we were through with body viewing, I got into the hearse with Dad and three ladies. We were driven to my hometown Catholic church for a funeral service.

The funeral service was lively with beautiful singing by the choir, a great sermon by the priest and wonderful emceeing by Ludovic Kahoro, the church catechist. And I was privileged to offer a tribute to Mum during the service. Here's what I said in the tribute:
My fellow christians, allow me to offer a brief but sincere tribute to my mother, the late Rebecca Muthoni Maina. Since I got to know her as my Mum back in the '90s when I was a small boy, all I can say is that she was the best mother I could ever have wished for. Very responsible and committed to her role as our mother.

I remember with nostalgia observing her wake up every morning to tend our farm, feed the cattle and then head to our hometown of Kiserian to run her shop. It was from that shop that she earned the money which put food on our table, clothes on our backs and roofs over our heads. Not once did she ever take a break from her work. That's how committed she was as a mother.

Over the years, I have acquired a lot of knowledge which made me more educated than Mum. Despite my superior education, to her, I was still her child. She would therefore offer me advice on how to go about my life. And I must say that I appreciated some of her advice.

After she was incapacitated in 2013 by an illness that forced her to close her shop and rest at home, she kept on showing us her responsible side. Many a times, she would phone our family members, friends and relatives to check on how they were doing. For me, I always found it a delight to hear her voice over the phone.

And it has been the honor of my life to look after her for the last eight years when her health was declining. We shared some good times together as well as some bad times. But it was all a great ride.

One of my favorite memories of our times together are the evenings she'd wish me journey mercies and Christ's blessings before I headed to Kiserian for my walking exercises.

Yes, Mum was a good and responsible woman. Loving, generous and understanding. As we gather here today to bid her farewell, I am terribly grief-stricken. I will miss her jokes, her voice, her advice and her blessings.

But since Mum believed in Christ, I am confident that she is now in a better place in heaven where she is watching over us. And I can hardly wait to be reunited with her in heaven. So till we meet again, rest in peace Mum.
Before the funeral day, I had resolved that if I felt horribly nervous while delivering the tribute, I would pretend I was sorrowful and pause to gather my wits. When it came time to deliver the tribute, I felt a bit confident and was satisfied with what I said. And I was encouraged when my brother Joe remarked that I had delivered my tribute brilliantly.

After the funeral service, we headed to our home to bury Mum. Tears of grief cascaded down my ruddy face as I watched Mum's casket being lowered into the cold, dark grave. My friend Douglas Warui tried to console me.

I am glad the funeral ceremonies are now over. What I desire is for things to go back to normal at home, even though nothing will ever look normal without Mum. And by the way, I am happy that I didn't gain weight during the mourning week as can be attested by the photo of me above that was taken yesterday.

Having stoically dealt with the news of Mum's death, viewing her body and attending her funeral, I now feel well equipped to handle anything that can happen in my life. For as the saying goes, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Ciao!

RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed the above story on Mum's funeral, you might also enjoy another one on "Understanding Our Parents" which I wrote last year. Just click on that link in blue to dive straight into the story.


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Mum Breathes Her Last

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This is my beautiful Mum during the wedding of my immediate elder brother Paddy which was held on November 17th, 2012. More about her in the story below.

The Swahili people of East Africa have a proverb that says, "Hayawi, hayawi huwa. (What has not happened will eventually happen.)" Well, my mother, who has been suffering from the effects of stroke, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, died yesterday morning from cardiac arrest.

Dad called me out of my sleep at around 3.50am yesterday to go check on our ailing Mum. When I entered their bedroom, I found her lying flat on the bed. Looking as if in deep slumber, she tried breathing and then became motionless. Something about her gesture told me she had probably passed away but I didn't say it. Instead, I performed CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) on her.

With Mum's condition not improving, Dad frantically phoned my brothers Joe, Bob and Paddy to inform them of her illness. Paddy, who is a doctor, ordered an ambulance to come to our home. Bob phoned Pascaline, a lovable neighbor who likes flashing a beatific smile at people, and requested her to go fetch Mum in her car.

As we waited for help to come, I longed to go back to my bed, not to sleep but to talk to God and process Mum's possible death. But I projected an attitude of concern for Mum and stayed by her side.

Pascaline's car would have been helpful if Mum could sit. But the problem was, she wasn't talking and moving her limbs, possibly dead in my estimation. So only an ambulance could help.

The ambulance finally arrived with two or three health-care professionals. I could tell they, too, thought Mum was dead but they were kind enough not to say it. They instead took a sample of her blood to check her sugar levels, wheeled her into the ambulance and drove her to hospital.

No sooner was Mum in the ambulance than I went back to my room and collapsed on the bed. And I stayed in bed for hours. I skipped my usual routine of reading the newspaper, taking breakfast, showering and drinking water. You can't just lose your Mum and behave as if everything is hunky-dory.

While I lay in bed, my mind flashed back to the events of the previous day when Mum went to our farm to relax and supervise farming activities. I remembered how she had phoned me from where she was on the farm and asked me to close the door of our mansion. Her phone call touched me so deeply that I resolved to love whoever she loved and probably hate whoever she hated. Little did I know that that would be her last day on earth.

I felt terribly grief-stricken to think that the Mum who had talked to me less than 24 hours before was now probably dead. And when it reached noon and I heard someone drive into the compound of our home, I sprang out of bed to check who had come. It was my brother Bob.

Bob confirmed to me what I had expected - that Mum was dead and gone. I felt like sobbing but tried appearing strong. Later on, we were joined by our brothers Joe and Paddy.

Unlike me, my brothers looked relaxed and composed, something which surprised me. They freely talked about Mum's last moments without shedding a tear. And Paddy let me know that he could take me to the mortuary to view Mum's lifeless body.

The news of Mum's untimely death spread in our home-area like wildfire. A number of neighbours came to offer us their condolences. Their kindness and concern for us impressed me.

One of the neighbours, a lady named Mrs. Masibo, recounted how she had heard that Mum had gone to the farm the previous day. I agreed with what she said and then I added that less than 24 hours before, Mum had phoned Dad to inquire where he was. The tone of my voice probably revealed my sadness but I was quick to express hope that I shall meet Mum again.

All the same, I am still terribly grief-stricken to lose the woman who gave me life. Hardly can I believe that I am now motherless. I will no longer have someone to wish me journey mercies and Christ's blessings when I am heading to my hometown of Kiserian for my evening exercises.

In an effort to calm my depressed and grief-stricken soul, I am seeking solace from these words of Job: "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I shall depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised." (Job 1:21-22)

RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed the above story on Mum's death, you might also enjoy another one on "A Mother to be Honored" which I wrote two 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)