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By Debbie Ogunjobi
It seems as if this year raced by. A most unusual year, good for some, awful for others but a year that mattered in many ways. It’s almost over and I have mixed feelings about the year; I can’t quite decide what mark to give it but all in all as years come it was rather interesting.

I remember saying to a friend that I just had a strong conviction that this year really mattered and that what I did would count. I had some life changing decisions to make and though I chose to walk the narrow path, a part of me felt like I had received  open heart surgery without the aid of anaesthesia.

A couple of years back I had watched a film where a young boy made a most insightful if rather irreverent comment.

“Doing the right thing sucks” he had muttered after he had been put through the paces of sacrificing his comfort for the greater good. I wouldn’t quite put it like that but after the year I’ve had, I totally understand where he is coming from.

The right thing is not necessarily the easiest or most pleasant thing to do! The most graphic description I can think of is what has almost become a nightly ritual for me. I try to live healthily so apart from fruit juices and copious amounts of water that I ingest regularly, I also make myself drink some vegetable juices!

Now before you start getting visions of chilled carrot juice think more in terms of bitter leaf and other very green vegetables freshly squeezed and downed in one go( if you stop halfway, you’ll puke). Is it healthy? Oh yes!!

Does it taste nice? Hell no!!!! But then if you factor in the low cholesterol, perfect blood pressure, no diabetes and many other benefits that come with it, it’s worth it!! This year was the year to do the right thing, even when they tasted worse than a glass of bitter leaf, aloe era, and scent leaf combined!!

The first and obvious question I am sure everyone is asking mentally is who and what determines what is right? The parameters are different for people and they change as we grow older. When I was younger my basic parameter was emotional. What was right was determined by how I felt about it, I followed my feelings and my life was lived by my compulsions.

The older I grew however, I learnt how flimsy decisions based on feelings were so I evolved and  started following logic and was also sadly disappointed that logic didn’t make life pain proof. At this particular stage of my life I follow faith; my faith in God is my lead in all that I do and while it is a lot more assured it has its challenges.

It’s not fail or pain proof but I am assured that God is with me in good and bad times. The hardest thing has been the issue of trust and complete surrender; I have never been able to trust anything or anyone but I am trusting God more and more with each breathe I take. I am learning to be gracious and accept that I can’t manipulate God and that my will must always bend to His!

I am also learning that God won’t give me all that I ask but He will grant me all I need. Mostly I am learning that God’s leading will not follow logic, will not follow emotion and will not be popular!

So all in all it’s been a year where enough grace was available to deal with all the challenges and there were so many this particular year. Choosing to follow that leading has been like having an arm amputated; especially where my choices were at loggerheads with that leading.

The only comfort has been the knowledge that He who knows the end from the beginning knows what is best for everyone in the long run! This year I finally have embraced the truth that feelings are different from that deep knowing when you face a truth that could only be God. Feelings or emotions are fleeting even unstable.

The only real truth is that only God is true; deep down I believe we all know that!!

As the year ends we all must be thankful, no matter how hard it’s been, we are still alive; it means we still have hope; every breathe we draw is another chance. We still have a legitimate right to faith that the tide will turn in our favour. It has also been 8years of writing the column. My coast is enlarged daily and I am surprised to get new readers even now.

I must admit that I am really excited to see the finish line in sight; the column most likely will be laid to rest in just another 100 articles. I would have fulfilled my ten year goal of writing and except I am persuaded otherwise by a higher power, this time in 2012 I would be saying goodbye. I thank you all for walking through life with me but mostly I Thank God for the grace to walk and to even have life, all in all, I have faith its all working out as should!!

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