Emulating King David
A True Story
on Oct 2, 2021
Who is your hero in the Bible? Mine is David who at a young age summoned the courage to confront and kill a giant named Goliath, and later became the king of Israel. I admire David not only for his courage and for the good looks he was said to have but also for the way he grew rich, famous and honored during his time on Earth.
After reading about the life of David, I have discovered that David and I have so much in common. To begin with, David was oppressed while he was young. I, too, was somewhat oppressed in my boyhood days; I grew up as a timid and confused teenager. And some people would take advantage of my timidity and confusion by making me do demeaning tasks without pay. Others would utter condescending remarks about me.
Then, like me, David had an interest in music and writing. He composed hymns for God and wrote a number of psalms that are in the Bible. Given how passionate David was about music and writing, I have a feeling that had he lived in this age of the internet, he would have been an avid blogger as I am.
David points out in the book of Psalms that he went astray at some point in his life. That's another fact about him that made me discover I have so much in common with him because I also went astray in 2008 when I was at the university in JKUAT, and again in 2011 when I was at the University of Nairobi - an ugly story I have narrated before on his lovely blog of mine.
Even after I dropped out of the University of Nairobi in 2011, I continued being rebellious. I would run away from home whenever my family failed to meet my needs. One night in 2011 when I ran away from home after my family members refused to fund the production of a song I had written, I sent them a message that I would commit suicide. Like David, I suffered from terrible guilt and distress as a result of my rebellious ways.
And how did David overcome his rebellious ways and disadvantaged background to become one of the richest and most honored persons in the crowded canvas of human history? First, by loving God with all his heart. It is apparent in the book of Psalms that David was totally dependent on God. He approached Him in prayer in times of joy and sorrow. That's why he has been described by historians as a man after God's heart.
Secondly, David attained his success by studying and meditating on the Word of God regularly and diligently. As he put it, he hid God's Word in his heart so that he might not sin against Him. I just like the way he says in one of his psalms that "I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears".
Lastly, David succeeded by following his passion for music and writing. Chuck Swindoll, a venerated theologian in America, has described David as "a man of passion and destiny" in one of his books. I am sure that passion for music and writing contributed to David's enviable mental clarity. Little wonder that he grew wealthy and respected.
Because David is my hero in the Bible, I have resolved to emulate him. How? By following my passion for music and writing and by earnestly seeking God through prayers and diligent study of His Word. I have this firm belief that if I do so, I will gain peace, wealth and honor, for David observed that God never leaves on the lurch those who trust in Him.
The only trait of David that I will not emulate is infidelity. David was unfaithful in marriage; he slept with the wife of a man named Uriah. And when he realized he had committed a grievous sin by doing so, he tried to cover up that sin by having Uriah killed in a battle. If I ever get married, and I am believing that I will, I shall strive to be faithful to my wife. Adieu!
RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed this story on how I will emulate King David, you might also enjoy another one I wrote about three years ago on "Emulating King David". Just click on that link in blue to dive straight into the story.
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An Advice to My Younger Self
A True Story
on Sep 27, 2021
In my previous story on this lovely blog of mine, I narrated how I wanted to transfer to MIT when I matriculated at a local university called JKUAT in May 2007. Well, I got such mediocre grades in my first semester at JKUAT, including a 'D' in Chemistry, that I decided to apply to MIT as a freshman, not as a transfer student. Besides MIT, the other American colleges I chose to apply for admission were Yale, Harvard and Stanford.
As I worked on my applications to those colleges, I came to like Harvard more than MIT, Yale and Stanford. For one thing, Harvard was more famous as a prestigious university than the other three colleges. Even my uneducated Mum had heard about the prestige of Harvard. I remember her telling me one night in 2007 that Harvard is a tough college to get into. Of course she told me so in my mother-tongue of Kikuyu.
Then, I was inspired to study at Harvard after learning that Bill Clinton and Bill Gates, two of my favorite heroes, had visited Harvard in 2007 to give speeches to the college students. Bill Clinton was invited at Harvard that year to address the Class of '07 on an occasion known at Harvard as Class Day, while Bill Gates was invited at Harvard that year to be conferred an honorary doctorate in a commencement ceremony during which he gave the keynote address. I got to know all that from the Harvard website which I visited occasionally in 2007.
While working on my Harvard application in 2007, I contemplated writing a letter to Prof. George Saitoti, my then area MP, to inform him of my dream of wanting to study at Harvard. I thought of telling Prof. Saitoti in the letter that I believed he would be elected President in the 2012 Kenya's General Elections, and that I would succeed him as President and my area MP in the 2022 General Elections. And the year 2022 appeared to my teenage mind like it was a long time to come.
Do you know what happened to all those lofty ambitions I had in 2007? Well, I was rejected at Harvard College come April 2008. I also didn't make the cut at MIT, Yale and Stanford. Then Prof. George Saitoti, my area MP who I dreamt of succeeding as President, died in helicopter crash in June 2012. He didn't even live to witness the Kenya's General Elections that were held in 2013 following a change in our country's constitution.
And then, I eventually lost interest in politics after trying to contest for a seat in the 2013 Kenya's General Elections. The difficulty I had in raising money for campaigns and in going out there to canvass for votes from people made me discover I just wasn't wired for a career in politics. And boy, I can't believe the year 2022, which appeared to my teenage mind like it was a long time to come, is now less than four months away!
On reflecting about the kind of young man I have been in the past 14 years, I have realized that I didn't have the brains to get into Harvard. I did some lying, exaggeration and plagiarism in the essays I submitted for my Harvard application in 2007. And when I took up blogging as a hobby in 2010, I continued engaging in such dishonesty in the posts I shared on my blog - an unethical habit I stopped in 2016 after I rebranded this blog to what it looks like now.
But back in 2007 while I worked on my Harvard application, I didn't see myself as unworthy of getting into Harvard. On the contrary, I believed with every fiber of my being that I had the potential to get into that prestigious college.
Given how I got rejected at Harvard, how Prof. George Saitoti died in a helicopter crash, how I lost interest in politics and how I came to realize that I didn't have the brains to get into Harvard, if I were to offer a piece of advice to the starry-eyed young man I was in 2007, this is what I would advise him:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight.I have extracted that piece of advice from the ever-green book of Proverbs. Had I followed the advice in 2007, I would probably have made wiser decisions that would have saved me from much of the turmoil that I went through in the years that followed.
All has not been lost though because these days, I have chosen to trust in the Lord with all my heart and to not lean on my own understanding. I am always involving God in all that I do and I can frankly say that He has been making my paths straight, at least for the past one year. I intend to continue relying on Him. Adieu!
RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed this story on the advice I'd give to my younger self, you might also enjoy another one I wrote more than three years ago on "Some Bad Days I Once Had". Just click on that link in blue to dive straight into the story.