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A Rebelious Yes


2020 is here and so is my anxiety. I started the year on a high note, lighting up fireworks with my brothers before retiring to my bedroom where I stared at the plans I’d written down for the year. Their magnitude dawned on me and for the first time I felt a heaviness on my shoulders that I hadn’t before. I took deep breaths and whispered, “God I don’t know how I’m going to achieve all of this. I don’t even have the finances to do it, but I have the audacity to dream because I know You aren’t limited by my circumstances. Here’s what I want. Help me.” I took another deep breath. My inhalations felt as though they were pushing back something heavy within me. By sunrise I felt all sorts of weak and powerless. My dreams had turned into a self-mockery; a reminder of why I shouldn’t even dream of dreaming.

Hello. My name is Thoko and I suffer from high functioning anxiety. My brain and imagination are my best friends on most days and on others, this is where they lead me. On days like this where people don’t feel solaceful, I am grateful to have the Bible. I landed on Ezekiel 37 this afternoon and broke down when I read verses 1-4.

You see, sometimes we are brought to our own valleys; a place where we come face to face with all the things we were meant to do or become but never did. It’s in this valley that God asks what seems to be a rhetorical question but really is one of faith; an embellishment of what Adam and Eve got when they ate the forbidden apple and hid; a question that is meant to guide us down a path of introspection where we make the connection of where we are and where we ought to be. “Do you think these bones can live?” Our response paves way for God’s command to bring to life what ceased to be alive. What moved me the most is that it is God Himself who brings us to the valley, walks in it with us and guides us through, wording us throughout the entire experience. I cannot begin to express how unraveling and calming that is for me.

I am aware of the fact that what I have is dry bones; dreams that I deeply desire to manifest and will need several miracles to achieve, but coupled with that awareness is that God is there. He is the One who makes a way in the wilderness, rivers in the deserts and the One who, in moments of my anxiety, asks me with the most tender and soft of voices, “Can these bones live?” and I say…yes. I confess my doubt and ask that He help my disbelief; that I have hope against all hope and faith against all faith. I pray that the truth of who He is silence every voice in my head that dares to question His might and ability. I believe He will do abundantly above all I could ever ask or think, according to the power that worketh in me.

I know that this is a choice I have to make. It is a declaration I need to speak to myself when the bones in my valley look very dry and I don’t seem to have a glimpse of the great army that God sees in them. It is that painful “Your will and not mine, Father” when deep down my will seems like the easier option. I don’t always believe what I say to myself, especially when it’s from the Bible and it speaks of a hope that I cannot relate to or envision, but I do believe in the power of the yes’s that I utter in rebellion to my enemies’ voice because they give God the permission to work. They wreak of a faith I wish to have, a battle I hope to win and a God I would love to have show up for me.

Will you utter rebellious yes’s this year? Will you dare greatly with a great faith in He who is greatness made manifest? Will you let Him breathe life into your dry bones? I know I will, and it is my hope that you do too.

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Life can tell you the truth about yourself, and though it may be a hard pill to swallow, it is in the swallowing that we heal and get better. The first half of this year showed me the ugly sides to myself. Horrid things, those sides *shudders*. But I decided to allow myself the gift of being better by seeing what was ugly about me and turning it into a masterpiece. I learnt to let go of words that I’d used to define myself by simply because they were things I didn’t want to be associated with anymore. I didn’t want to be wifey material. I didn’t want to be lazy. I didn’t want to be sweet. Or nice. Or accommodating. I wanted no mingling with descriptions that served as a reminder of how I had suffocated myself to accommodate another. I let go of “Gemini’s are social butterflies” because I really wasn’t one. I let go of “You’re nice” because I was anything but, and anyone who used that describe me clearly didn’t know me well. I let go of “You’re so hardcore” because I had learnt to be ‘hardcore’ to protect myself from a world that taught me it would poke at my soft, inner parts. I let go, and I am letting go. As I allow my palms the freedom from the fists I had formed in a bid to hold on to ideologies, definitions and ghosts of and about myself, I walk freely into the paths that lead me to the woman I was always meant to become. I am becoming her, slowly, loudly, unapologetically.}

A Rebelious Yes

2020 is here and so is my anxiety. I started the year on a high note, lighting up fireworks with my brothers before retiring to my bedroom where I stared at the plans I’d written down for the year. Their magnitude dawned on me and for the first time I felt a heaviness on my shoulders that I hadn’t before. I took deep breaths and whispered, “God I don’t know how I’m going to achieve all of this. I don’t even have the finances to do it, but I have the audacity to dream because I know You aren’t limited by my circumstances. Here’s what I want. Help me.” I took another deep breath. My inhalations felt as though they were pushing back something heavy within me. By sunrise I felt all sorts of weak and powerless. My dreams had turned into a self-mockery; a reminder of why I shouldn’t even dream of dreaming.

Hello. My name is Thoko and I suffer from high functioning anxiety. My brain and imagination are my best friends on most days and on others, this is where they lead me. On days like this where people don’t feel solaceful, I am grateful to have the Bible. I landed on Ezekiel 37 this afternoon and broke down when I read verses 1-4.

You see, sometimes we are brought to our own valleys; a place where we come face to face with all the things we were meant to do or become but never did. It’s in this valley that God asks what seems to be a rhetorical question but really is one of faith; an embellishment of what Adam and Eve got when they ate the forbidden apple and hid; a question that is meant to guide us down a path of introspection where we make the connection of where we are and where we ought to be. “Do you think these bones can live?” Our response paves way for God’s command to bring to life what ceased to be alive. What moved me the most is that it is God Himself who brings us to the valley, walks in it with us and guides us through, wording us throughout the entire experience. I cannot begin to express how unraveling and calming that is for me.

I am aware of the fact that what I have is dry bones; dreams that I deeply desire to manifest and will need several miracles to achieve, but coupled with that awareness is that God is there. He is the One who makes a way in the wilderness, rivers in the deserts and the One who, in moments of my anxiety, asks me with the most tender and soft of voices, “Can these bones live?” and I say…yes. I confess my doubt and ask that He help my disbelief; that I have hope against all hope and faith against all faith. I pray that the truth of who He is silence every voice in my head that dares to question His might and ability. I believe He will do abundantly above all I could ever ask or think, according to the power that worketh in me.

I know that this is a choice I have to make. It is a declaration I need to speak to myself when the bones in my valley look very dry and I don’t seem to have a glimpse of the great army that God sees in them. It is that painful “Your will and not mine, Father” when deep down my will seems like the easier option. I don’t always believe what I say to myself, especially when it’s from the Bible and it speaks of a hope that I cannot relate to or envision, but I do believe in the power of the yes’s that I utter in rebellion to my enemies’ voice because they give God the permission to work. They wreak of a faith I wish to have, a battle I hope to win and a God I would love to have show up for me.

Will you utter rebellious yes’s this year? Will you dare greatly with a great faith in He who is greatness made manifest? Will you let Him breathe life into your dry bones? I know I will, and it is my hope that you do too.}