Taunet Nelel means 'New Beginning.' This blog is about finding purpose and living in purpose. It seeks to inspire hope and help you live a fulfilling life. One with "No Regrets, No Fear, No Shame and No Anger."

A Story of Forgiveness

Monday, May 28

A King gets a poor guy, let's call him Tom, that owes him 100,000 dollars. Of course that's a lot of cash, so he wants Tom, his family and all his goods to be auctioned off. Tom begs to be given time to pay back. But the King does something much bigger than that. He forgives Tom of all the debt and erases it, as if he never owed the King anything.

Please forgive me...

Oh, so Tom goes on with life (because it does go on...) and he meets his friend, Tim, who owes him 10 dollars. That's a lot of money right, according to Tom it could help pay back what he owes the king.

The thing is Tom has never believed that the King erased his debt. His plea was that he be given time to pay back. Tom has been going on with life trying to pay back.

Tom gets Tim by the throat and asks that he pays up...Same script, Tim is so poor he can't. He begs to be given time. But this time, Tom wouldn't do that. Tim is thrown in jail until he pays up.

Word gets to the King. Tom did the unthinkable. The king says to Tom, "I erase $100,000 debt and you don't have mercy on Tim for $10 dollars." Of course, the King puts Tom in jail to be tortured until he pays up.

Whose debt do you have to pay back? Whose debt have you not forgiven today? Who have you thrown to jail because of the $10 dollars until they pay up?
Do you expect the one who you owe the $100,000 to forgive you still and you are holding the $10 guy at their throat to pay up?

The lesson is, God erased all your debt. You owe Him nothing. God was merciful to you. But you go around putting all the people who owe you in jail until they pay up. Just like Tom, you'll be tortured until you pay back $100,000 which you can't pay back for.

The torture could mean the pain, the hurt, the load you carry because of not forgiving. Don't peg your forgiveness on people paying back the debt, God didn't and He expects you to do the same. Leave God to work on the people in your life all you have to do is love yourself enough to forgive.

Love yourself enough to forgive : "Unforgiveness is like taking poison but expecting someone else to die."

Matthew 18 34 Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt.
35 “That’s what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters from your heart.”


Monday, May 21

Our definition of perfection, “being entirely without fault or defect; satisfying all requirements; corresponding to an ideal standard.”
God's definition of perfection, “being in Christ; live upright and throughly furnished unto all good works.”

We live in a perfectionist world. Parents who want a perfect child, who won't make mistakes. Children who seek perfect records, to be in everyone's good book. Adults who seek perfect mates, to be treated just how they want to. Man and woman who seek perfect marriages, for their expectations to be met. The truth is its all a lie. Who is perfect except God? Everyone is imperfect but striving for perfection. Talk of water mixing with oil. Ain't going to happen soon. You will never be perfect and neither will other people. God doesn't want you to be perfect. Yes, He loved you in your imperfection. He loved you anyway. How much more when you accept His forgiveness and love? Stop the endless dancing to the songs, 'If only...I could...I should...I would'
God loves you anyway. He says 'Come just as you are.'

Does reading the paragraph above have implications on how you live and what you expect from people?

Authenticity is a rare priceless gift. My definition of the word authentic is this, “Shedding off the mask you are wearing and revealing the beautiful person hidden inside.” I wonder how many people I interact with are authentic. I ask myself, “Am I authentic?” Recently, I have had the privilege to meet a few successful people who are authentic. They have poured out their lives, their challenges and the lessons they derived from them to me. The impact has been amazing, most of their experiences are similar to mine and some even worse. They conquered and their experiences are a beautiful story.

Imagine with me a box containing all the “stuff” you don't have any use of anymore, good or bad. You lock the box and throw away the keys. You then place the box at the back of a closet that you rarely use, in a room you never visit, in fact the room is locked and the keys either got lost or you threw them away – you just don't remember.

That is how so many of us live, we only see the outcome. Rare forced crooked smiles that last less than a minute, forced handshakes because you simply don't want to say the rare Hi's, worst among them are forced laughters that leave your heart aching because you don't have real joy.

Being authentic is a painful affair, but it is rewarding. You have to find the lost doors and get past the animal called DENIAL. Having hidden all the past hurts, disappointments, successes in a closed ROOM, CLOSET and BOX and trying to live like the “stuff” is Missing In Action; will not help.

Take off your mask

Matthew 11:28-30 "Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." (The Message)

An authentic parent will let their children fail, even if they saw it coming. They won't rub in the all too familiar, “I told you so...”
An authentic child will not feel bogged down by their failings, they will understand that the failure does not define who they are. Many people think that failure is a person when it is only an event.
Authentic couples know that their spouses are not gods. There are mere mortals just as they are.
Understand that only God is perfect, and He loves you just as you are. He will turn your ashes into beauty. He alone can make you perfect.

Refer to this for an explanation on Biblical Perfection: http://www.learnthebible.org/biblical-perfection.html

You have one life, LIVE it fully

Wednesday, May 2

A friend recently shared a quote that I believe is vital to today's topic:

"Life is not a rehearsal, you either leave it or live it."

Have you ever reflected back on your life? Where you came from, how you were born, what your parents taught you whether wrong and right, what you observed growing up? The low and high moments in your life. Where you are now? Where you want to be in 3-5 years? What you are potentially able to do? I'd like to think of this as a graphical representation of your life.

I believe that we are all laden with unlimited potential. There are resources, people and opportunities around each of us but they are hidden in plain sight. Just because you can not physically see something doesn't mean that it is isn't there. All these will be vital in attaining the goals, and the vision you have in life.

All the people that ever died having emptied themselves of their potential have various things in common. It did not matter what religion they were in, what mattered is that they believed in a greater power than themselves. They believed in a cause greater than themselves and pursued those causes even unto death. Martin Luther King Jr., Mahatma Gadhi, Mother Teresa, and our very own Nobel Laureate Wangari Maathae are a few examples. They were not driven by material gain, popularity contests, awards, “followers” or none thereof. Their significance was measured by how well every activity they engaged in tied with their purpose. Nothing deterred them from pursuing their calling. Yes, they generated a lot of criticism, but none of them resulted to war as a weapon to champion their causes. They were peaceful even in the midst of turmoil. They remained steadfast and ultimately lived fulfilled lives. Isn't it better dying trying to do something than to live doing nothing?

Have you read the story of one Anne Sullivan? She was an American teacher best known as the instructor and companion of Helen Keller. She epitomizes a life fully lived. She died empty.

The world is devoid of action only small-talk.

What is sad is that many people walk around doing nothing and changing nothing? Always complaining, blaming and excusing themselves from what is essentially their duty. Where you complain the most, please take a moment to see whether you are the missing change agent? Most probably you are the one who'll make a difference. You are the one who needs to change. It's not so much about making a big change in the shortest period of time, rather than making steadfast small changes, one day at a time. It is also not about being perfect as much as it is about striving for excellence.

Maybe the guy who is always throwing tantrums in your office only needs a smile. Probably, no one has ever cared enough to smile at him.
Maybe your small brother just needs someone to tell him, he can do it. All he has been hearing around is that, "It's not possible." No wonder, he's always in his room watching TV from dawn to dusk.
Just maybe, your boss, or the president of your country is not the problem. You just need to wake up from your dream of 'freedom' and take action.

People find it easier talking about others than being introspective and talking about themselves. It's not about being overly self-conscious or on the extreme and being arrogant. It is much harder to look within yourself, and admit that you are fearful of failure, that you can't ask for help, that you never delegate routine tasks because you don't believe that others can do a better job.

What do you love doing most? Give it some thought. What do you hate most and would want to do something about, if given opportunity? If there is something you could do for free and not mind if no one paid you, what would that be? What gives you tremendous energy? These are pointers to what your life's purpose is.

Until you do what you love, your life will be controlled by emotions such as fear, anger, shame and regret. Until you stand up for what you truly believe in, you will always have to compromise, settle for second-best. Opportunities will pass you by in broad daylight. Remember, you are not getting any younger as you age.

What footprints will you leave behind after you die? What is the legacy that you will leave? Will you have made the world a better place to live in? Will you have made it easier for another soul to breathe better in the world? The change has to start inside you, but you have to take actual steps and make an impact.

Dr. Anthony Campolo, Professor of Sociology, Eastern College, St. Davids, Pennsylvania, shares the results of a survey where 50 people 95 years and older were asked: “If you could live your life over what would you do differently?” These old people said they would do the following:

  1. Reflect more.
  2. Risk more.
  3. Do things that would live on after they died.
Do you have to wait until you are ninety to reflect so painfully? (excerpt from Made for Greatness, Anthony Gitonga)
I pray for you my friend today as I do for myself, may we empty ourselves of the uniqueness we have in us. May we pursue our purpose. May we fulfill God's calling of us today. Whatever you do, wherever you are, the Maker is calling for you to touch the life of another, and by chain effect, many others and ignite them through your purpose. Choose to spend your life wisely today, you only have one (life).

What steps will you take starting now? Your “Hellen Keller” is waiting!

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