LEMP - I can't really get the words that can describe it. Is it a course, a program, or a class? I choose to call it a life-changing moment, because it is in LEMP that my life was transformed and where I discovered my purpose. My first day experience while going to LEMP can be a summary of how my life was before I joined this life-changing program. It was Saturday morning, 26th January 2019. I woke very eager to start this program that my friend had introduced me to. Well, my aim was just not to make my friend mad at me for not attending, hence I expected nothing. I tagged along with my sister and being on Saturday with less traffic jam we were in the city centre within minutes. To cut the long story short we got lost for approximately 2 hours. Not because I don't know Nairobi, but because I thought I knew everything. I was following Google maps, and that's how I found myself straying in Industrial Area, yet the venue was at Y.W.C.A along Nyerere Road. Well, finally after wasting a lot of time and money on credit to call LEMP for directions, my sister and I got there very tired and exhausted. My story shows how I used to live - thinking that I knew it all about life. That I was too intelligent to ask for directions. That I am so spiritual, God fearing and holier than thou. Then the moment came, the life-changing one. Yes, LEMP. The first session took me by storms and and I was so eager to get more of that stuff. I made a date with LEMP every Saturday and it became my form ya sato (My Saturday engagement). My spiritual life, my purpose, my priorities and every aspect of my life, both my social and economical life was clearly defined. I was impressed by the approach the program uses to teach, which recognizes that we are all from different backgrounds and we are on different paths to our destiny. I feel the program happened at the right time when I am building my life to what I want it to be. I can say confidently that having gone through LEMP, I am now effectively equipped financially, spiritually, physically, mentally, socially, professionally and emotionally. I will appeal to everyone wishing to discover their purpose to join LEMP, and you will not only benefit remarkably, but even those who/will look up on you will attest that indeed you passed through a great mentorship program. Thank you LEMP. Paul Rukwaro, LEMP Season 12 Alumni and student at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT).
Thanks to God for His grace and mercy. My name is Esther Maina, and here is my story. I attended LEMP Season 9 for 10 weeks. I was abandoned, bitter, confused, frustrated and rejected. But I am not ashamed of all that because those few weeks gave me what my 16 years of formal education failed to provide to me. For that short season, my physical, emotional and spiritual systems opened up as if they just got invented. I thank my Facebook friend (who I had not met before) for introducing me to LEMP. He used his social media effectively! I was lying in a hospital bed that particular evening after visitation hours since I had been bed ridden for a couple of weeks. My locomotion was shattered. I could only move my arms and my head sideways. Family members came in turns to visit me, at least three times a day, and make sure I was well fed. I relied on them, the nurses and ward passers-by for anything I wanted moved, even my body. Not even one of my friends came to visit me in hospital! That was the hardest time of my life. At least, my hand could move under the pillow and reach for my phone, which was so lucky to have survived the accident with me. I consider that a miracle too because things happen to accident victims’ properties but here I was scrolling my phone through social media accounts. I found an advertisement of LEMP Season 9, inquired and applied that very moment. After a few weeks, I was all well and walking. The season kicked off and I started classes with a lot of excitement. I knew I was way older than most people in class, probably a few years younger than the founder himself, I felt I needed this more than anyone else in the class. I made new friends, interacted with intellectuals from different institutions, listened to many who faltered like I did; this whole interaction with the mentees birthed a family for me. But what I value most are the lessons I learnt that season that got me asking; how on earth have I been living? “You are here on earth for a season and for a reason” stopped being a cliché or a high-school parade phrase. Psalm 90:10 actually applied inside my brain. That I had 70 years (or 80 years if added a bonus) to live, and these years are supposed to be accounted for at the end of it all. My big question became, how shall I account for the days I have lived here on earth? I thought I knew who I was. A degree holder, certified job-seeker in the streets of Nairobi and other major towns for the last 6 years. A mother and a wanna-be Nobel Prize Laureate for environment and sustainable development. I was once a student leader in different student organizations, if I was able to reason with very knowledgeable people in the university, what more could I have done in the village? I had a vision to be a great servant leader. But then, I lived from hand to mouth did a lot of things just to try luck. From hawking second hand clothes in Muthurwa. Being a tea girl in a kibandaski, doing laundry for people at a fee in my hood, and working for Mr. Chiloba; are just a few of the jobs I did. Before all this, I had wasted a lot of time during my campus years and even after. Partying with my girls (who I thought were my best friends forever), club hopping and raving carelessly. I had slept on my talents in writing and abandoned my useful hobbies in conservation. I always postponed doing things because I was always drinking alcohol and if sober, I feared to fail. I enjoyed a wrong company of friends who the only mentorship they gave was ‘how to live once’. I regretted having abandoned my faith in Jesus Christ and indulging in a crazy appetite for things that only brought shame to me and my mother. What happened to me? I was once the good girl in the village. The whole family had hopes in me considering that I was the first person to go to the university from my family, the second in my village. This hope fell apart somewhere along the way and I couldn’t trace it back. They stopped believing in me and consulting me, in fact I became a mock of the family. I had chosen a wrong path and developed a care free attitude, which was a great problem because I gave the devil a gateway to my soul, to use me as he pleased. Well, he did use me for quite some time until I surrendered to God. To cut the story short, I realized I was living a lie, when I enrolled in LEMP! I was enabled to view things from a whole different perspective which existed but I was ignorant of it. I became time conscious and even people around started respecting my time. I created time to volunteer and opportunities to work as a volunteer also opened up. Now I am a youth leader and mentor at my church and in my community. I got to know how to write very nice job application letters. I remember immediately after the season, I applied for a job that made a potential employer schedule a meeting, book a flight from Northern Kenya with his colleague to come interview me. I was taught how to tackle job interviews. A few weeks ago, I passed an interview and got a job. I got mentally and physically fit from an almost-state of depression. I got to understand I was meant to teach and mentor people to live effectively. That I had a calling in preaching and teaching the word of God, when I thought I was on earth to pass a generation like millions of my age mates around the world. My identity, purpose and destiny appeared to me like a vision at night. Like a new born baby; I wanted to nurture what God had revealed to me. I am a testimony that it is never too late to discover God’s will in our lives. By His grace and mercy we are saved from self-destruction no matter the age or race. LEMP is not just a class you enroll to be certified; it’s a platform that God is using to transform lives, an opportunity to learn and discover your purpose and to live an exemplary life here on earth. After all, we shall all be held accountable of our very own deeds and words.
I'm grateful to God for the great work you are doing at LEMP of challenging individuals to live effectively and with great value. I have been privileged to attend the LEMP 101 Course, and I can attest of how transformative LEMP is. I have improved on the values of time management in all my dealings, managing my environment and interactions, and exercising excellence in my actions. I have also been reaching out in motivating and encouraging my friends circles who are stressed by life experiences. All the references is from the Bible, for we do not rely on human wisdom but on our Creator. I have committed myself to be part of the LEMP family and looking forward to the 2019 calendar of events to be circulated so that we walk together in this. Thank you and may God continually expand LEMP. Kind regards William Kedienye, LEMP Season 11 Alumni.
This is the true story of my life...... My Name is Okwakau Melkizedeck. Four years ago after my Form Four, I thought that nothing is possible for me after KCSE results were out. I had a good grade, but not good enough to secure me a direct entry into the university. Our family is one of those that were deeply affected by the 2007-2008 post-election violence, and therefore getting to go to the university as a self-sponsored student was unthinkable. That time I never knew anyone who could just advice or encourage me about life and what really matters most in life. The first thing that always came into my mind was "mujengo" (casual construction work), which I did and earned a daily income of Kshs 300. It was not easy but I was trying to get something for myself. After struggling for some months as a "Mtu wa Mkono", I opted for working in a barber shop, then later on in a Car Wash. By this time, my younger brother was in university and also trying to make his ends meet. Sometimes I used to think how my life will be when my brother will be driving. It made me decide to follow my brother to Nairobi so that at least we can learn the way of life together, eat together when we had and go hungry together when we lacked - all our lives we have been living side by side from early ages to date. The one thing God gave us is a strong Family bond, full of love. In Nairobi things were never much better, but at least when my brother left his books behind I used study them a little and gain some knowledge. That used to help me a lot. My brother sometimes used come with his different friends and at times we used to go together with him to his university. I made lots of friends and was exposed due to the interactions. That is when I realized that when you stay with people with knowledge after some time you'll be like them; that is if you decide to be like them. Those friends made me learn a lot. With my brother, we always believed in a better future and therefore, staying motivated and being positive were our order of life. After some few months my brother introduced LEMP (Living Effectively Mentorship Program) into my life. At first I was not willing to join because I was always concerned about getting into university, without knowing I was ignoring a very important part of my life; and that my life needed something much more important - Mentorship. Of course he always insisted. At the time LEMP was running Season 5 and I only attended one class then disappeared. Days passed by then my cousin gave me Kshs 9000 to join KCA University to study Accountancy. My fee for the semester was Kshs 28000. I deferred because I had no one or anywhere to get and pay my balance. After five months I went back to the university and a month later I had nothing to pay for my fees then my in-law paid my fees, including for my KASNEB exams. I wanted to defer for the second time but my Brother-in-law paid the fees for me. I finished that semester and as usual the following semester was no much different, I had know one to pay my fees. I stayed In the house without any hope of going back to the university for a whole year without doing anything, I was really depressed. One day on Whats app I saw my brother advertising for LEMP Season 9. I decided just to go for a session because I was idle in the house and thought to myself that after all I had nothing to loose; that was when my life changed completely. I thank Douglas Waudo, our mentor who made me abide by to biblical teachings. Right from the first day, first class I felt that I needed more. I believe that this was God's timing in my life. After four classes I realized that the biggest problem I had was with my self-esteem, and that was what almost made me fail in life. Courage came from nowhere. Even before the 6th class I got a modeling job because of that courage from LEMP. In LEMP I realize my purpose and passion. I graduated from LEMP, and I am now living effectively without struggling with life like life before LEMP. Two weeks after graduating from LEMP, I got another job that pays well. Now I can pay my fees and save for my future. From LEMP I learnt that you "DON'T WAIT FOR A CRISIS FOR YOU TO START SOMETHING, THE TIME TO START IS NOW". From then I always trust God to direct me in everything I do. I have learned not to wait for change to happen, but to make things happen. I appeal to all to join LEMP, where you will discover your purpose in life and get answers to life's most challenging questions. Okwakau Melkizedeck, LEMP Season 9 Alumni.
I am beginning to slowly figure out this thing called life. It’s taken a while, but I am steadily getting there. For the most part, I crawled into the labyrinth of life, ignorantly and without guidance, sense of direction, purpose or focus. To say the least, it’s been a crazy ride defined with an abundance of tears, regrets, and most importantly, valuable lessons. Granted, I have made mistakes. Stumbled. Hurt people. Disappointed many. I have ignored wise counsel and paid the price. I have wasted time and money, and lived to be remorseful. I have squandered opportunities. Taken advantage of friends. Been taken advantaged of. My heart has been broken. My hope has been quashed many times. I have lied and been lied to. I have been falsely accused. Called names. Humiliated. Disgraced. Laughed at. Intimidated. Belittled. Harassed and mocked. Friends have deserted me, others have betrayed me. I have been lonely. I have shed tears when no one could see me. I have cried my heart out in the deepest dark of the night. I have been on top of the mountain, but then I have equally been down the murky valley. I have tasted success, and also wallowed in failure, shame and indignity. I know what it feels to have abundance. I also know what it feels to have nothing. I know what it feels to be loved, but I also know what it feels to be betrayed, dumped, rejected and considered good for nothing. This thing called life Without mentorship and godly guidance, I was left to discover this thing called life on my own. And boy! did I make a mess out of it! Most of what I know now has been as a result of trial and error. Tasting the waters with both feet. Youthful bravado that is more fueled by peer pressure, ego and pride than good counsel. I remember at one time, blowing 50K in one sitting all in the name of having fun, living the life, though if you ask me, it was more of showing off and pleasing friends. I have had my heart broken to pieces. I know what that means. I know how cold, those tears feel when they roll down your cheeks in the middle of the night. I know that feeling of pure rejection. Hating yourself and always feeling like you can never be good enough. I have been in debts to the point of contemplating suicide. I have slept hungry because of foolish financial decisions. I have been sick because of an unhealthy lifestyle. I have drunk myself almost to death due to frustration. I have regretted. I have cursed. I have blamed everyone around me for my failures, instead of taking full responsibility for my life. I was young, foolish and restless. Trying in my own ability and ignorance to figure out this thing called life. It backfired on me, and it backfired big time. Well, despite all I have gone through, years later, here I am, alive, more wiser, stronger, all by the grace of God. I am now enlightened, mentally and emotionally studious, and more determined to never let life beat me down again. A righteous man may fall seven times, and rise again, declares Proverbs 24:16. Life has beaten me down to my knees. Broken me into pieces, and spat in my face. But then again, life has also been good to me. It has preserved me. Tolerated my ignorance, and over and above, taught me valuable lessons that the educational system and parenting were unable to. Life’s little lessons It’s those little lessons I want to briefly share with you with the hope that I will help someone as a stepping stone towards their success and greatness. And if you ever wondered why I am so passionate about mentorship, well, there is your answer. It’s amazing how God in His grace and mercy has a way of weaving your mistakes, failures, and weakness into something wonderful that He uses for His glory. I have seen lives of young people I mentor dramatically transformed simply by sharing my story. Reminds of Romans 8:28 that says all things work together for good for those who love the Lord and are called according to His purpose. And one of my favourite Scriptures is: 1 Corinthians 1:27-28. I says: “God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. He chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. He chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important.” So, if you ever feel you don’t qualify. You are not good enough. You don’t add up. If you ever feel despised, rejected, humiliated, disgraced, useless – well, just know that according to that Scripture up there – you are the best candidate, fully qualified for God to use. Life has taught me the following valuable lessons that money would never have bought. Lessons that I have hung onto with the very last thread of my life. Lessons that have made me who I am today – a slave of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has fully given his life as a earthen vessel to be used by God. From a village boy who grew up herding his dad’s sheep, while battling jiggers and malnourishment to a simple man who by God’s grace has directly impacted the lives of over 10,000 young people… and still counting. Yes, if God can use me, he definitely can use anyone. Well, get your pen and paper, class begins now: Put God FIRST above anything or anyone else. Don’t live like you will never die, and end up dying like you never really lived. Be not wise in your own understanding. Put God first and your life will be so fulfilling. Understand that we are here on earth only for a season and for a reason. Don’t be wise in your own eyes. Don’t try to do things with your own wisdom. You don’t know everything and you will never know. You can’t fix your life without the mercy, grace and love of God.There’s a greater power, a greater person than you. His name is God, Almighty. Proverbs 14:12 says “There’s a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.” Allow me to quote for you Proverbs 3:5-6. It’s a Scripture that has always brought balance and guidance to my life. It says: “Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track. Don’t assume that you know it all. Run to God! Run from evil.” (Message Bible) Anything that does not affect your destiny and purpose in life should never worry you. Life is about priority, so let the most important thing be the most important thing. Stop worrying about things that do not affect your destiny and purpose. Stop being so concerned about what people say about you. Stop forcing yourself in someone’s life. Live your life. Be you. Be happy with you. Mind your own business. Pursue your destiny. And finally, whatever you cannot control and whatever does not matter should never be a priority to you. You are not the CEO of the world, and neither are you the savior of the world. Live your life. Concentrate on what matters to you, your destiny, your purpose in life and your God. For by end of it, it’s the only thing that will count. Don’t be defined by the opinion of others. Stop living your life for others, and being a people ‘pleaser’. Don’t allow to be defined by other people’s skewed opinion about you. Be yourself. You have your own self-esteem. It’s self, then esteem. It’s yours, so you determined it yourself. More importantly, don’t be defined by the things you own, the clothes you wear or the car you drive. Don’t be defined by your education or career. Its all vanity, for at the end of your life, its your relationship with God and what you did for Him that will matter. Be defined by your character and morals, integrity, humility and a good heart. And finally, don’t measure your progress in life using someone else ruler. Galatians 6:4-6 says “Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else.” Choose your friends wisely. Remember you are an average of the friends you hang out with. Show me your friends and I will tell you who you are, it’s said. Your friends can make or break you. They can build, or destroy you. If a friend doesn’t positively add any value in your life, that’s extra baggage, cut them off without apologies. You’d rather have one quality friend, than a quantified bunch of back-bitters, gossipers and envious friends who will bite their tongue when they see you succeed. A fool is a wise man’s ladder, goes an African Proverb. Choose your friends wisely. Don;t be used as a ladder by your selfish ambitious friends. Ensure you have a mentor. Have someone in your life you respect and look upon to be your mentor. Someone with integrity, good morals, God-fearing and mature. Someone who will offer wise counsel, guide you, help you in crucial decision-making and be there for you. Mentorship is super important in your personal and professional development. Don’t be a know-it-all. You don’t and will never have the monopoly of knowledge and wisdom. Be humble enough to learn from others, especially the ones who have gone before you. What better person to teach you than the one who’s been there and done it all! Proverbs 15:22 says “Plans go wrong for lack of advice (mentorship); many advisers (mentors) bring success.” I wonder, could it be you have been struggling in life because you lack advisers? There are so many precious little lessons life has taught me, which I cannot document all here. Its one of the reasons by God’s grace I founded the Living Effectively Mentorship Program (LEMP) with the aim of equipping individuals to discover their purpose, maximise their God-given potential to live effectively on earth as they also become agents of change. Author, Douglas Waudo, LEMP Founder.
My name is Odede Ezekiel Oduor, a 5th-year student civil engineering at the University of Nairobi… what I learnt in LEMP is that in networking, it's about the people who know you, not the people you know. This has helped me a lot as I now strategically introduce myself, and engage more with big wigs in the industry when I meet them. Unlike before when I would simply say hi, exchange cards, and take selfies and that was all. Investing in myself Since I joined LEMP I am in the process of reading my second book. From the knowledge I have gained so far, I have managed to save and start an Mpesa business… I am still planning to open more of them. I have also learnt about habit - why we do what we do and how to change it. This has really helped me to realise that habits are just but a bunch of decisions we once made and therefore simply making a decision can also change the bad habits. Attending LEMP LEMP is really helping me answer life’s biggest questions: Who am I; What is my identity; Where did I come from, and What is my purpose in life. As a result, I have started reading and understanding the human manual (the Bible). I have also come to understand that I have a purpose on this earth, and I do have enormous hidden potential in me that I can tap into and reach my greatness. LEMP has helped me understand that this life is about other people and the legacy you leave behind is what matters a lot. I have also learned that my destiny is in my hands, for I am the CEO of my life. CV writing and looking for a job Through LEMP, I realised that one of the things that would make me stand out during job applications was how I present my CV. I have since revised my CV and packaged it to reflect my great wealth of knowledge, experience, skills and personal attributes, which I believe will now give me a competitive advantage in the job market. Odede Ezekiel Oduor, LEMP Season 7 Alumni
“Titles don’t define leaders. Actions and deeds define leaders. I want to be this kind of a leader. This is exactly what LEMP has taught me. And what’s more, I’ve got to increase my knowledge and feed my spirit and soul very well on a well-balanced diet: The Word (BIBLE), books, current issues, exercise etc. I am leaping out into being that leader, who is a LEADER. Titles DON’T give leaders. LEMP has a load of sweet things to feed on. I’ve eaten so well from it. I don’t regret one bit being associated with LEMP. Already, I am on my toes, working on my motivational book, writing more and more scripts every day. Alas! I got my eyes opened on this one: Nimewacha kulalia masikio (stopped sleeping on my talents and abilities). I am also already on with the drawing of cartoons and animals for primary school productions. I motivate at least two souls in a week as I target a thousand plus before the close of three years. I can’t say my circle of friendship is still the same. I now understand the essence of networking social media platforms. I’ve got to keep myself connected. You’ve got to know me! I got to network with you. Staying connected and networked is one of the to-do things that I can’t leave out when writing my schedule. I clearly understand the job market. I know the tricks. I only need to take a step and get down to it. My papers are clean and ready. I am a job creator: I know I am and you won’t convince me otherwise. Then, I know how to manage my finances, just ask me how. I can confidently say that I am not the person I was before joining LEMP and I assure you that I will not be the person I am today in the near future. I know what I was created for! I know the limits. I know what I stand for and against, fearlessly. I can clear cut what I want and what I don’t want, what I need and what I don’t need. I just can’t settle for anything! I have a plan. A plan for my future, a schedule for each week before it commences, with every minute well accounted for, giving each day my very best. Whatever I lay my hands on, I do with all my might. I no longer want to live like idiots; they spend too much time dreaming of the future, never realizing that a little of it arrives every day. This keeps me on my toes. Lastly, I know who I am: A spiritual being. Everything around me is about GOD. He made me. I’ve got to live my purpose. Only being and doing all I was created for. At least I now know that: GREATNESS WITHOUT PURPOSE IS A GRAVEYARD. Purpose is simply why we live!" Mary Wanjeri, Student, LEMP Season 6 Alumni and Student at the University of Nairobi.
"Joining LEMP is the best thing that happened to me the first quarter of this year. For years I have been longing to meet someone who could mentor me and guide me. It seemed my wishes were futile, until late last year when a friend told me about LEMP. After going through the brochure, I knew for sure that LEMP was a program I could not afford to miss. I wanted to know my purpose, maximise my God-given potential, live effectively on earth and become an agent of change in my family, to my buddies, church, society and nation. My sincere gratitude goes to LEMP fraternity for selflessly giving their time, resources and willingly choosing to share knowledge, experiences, ups and downs to ensure that young adults live a life of purpose, and avoid the mistakes of youthfulness. The nine LEMP modules were eye opening to me. From each module I learnt important lessons that I am using, and will continue to use as an effective agent of change. On spiritual development module, I learnt that I am a spiritual being; who is a spirit, that lives in a body and possesses a soul. The Spirit of God dwells in me, and whatever I do in my physical realm has spiritual consequences. My soul determines who I am. I have resolved to guard my mind because this where my self-dwells by constantly reading God’s word to saturate my heart and my mind because from the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. My purpose is now clear and I am living it out in my own simple way, and this has brought fulfilment in my life. The Bible is my reference book, my manufacturer’s manual. From Personal Development module I now value expansion of one’s self-awareness, knowledge and improving personal skills. My energy is now refocused to better my strengths, and see to it that I deal with my weakness to be wholesome. I have enrolled for Tissue Culture training to improve my laboratory skills and read diverse range of books to expand my knowledge. To explore my creative side, I joined a friend who does face painting for kids. I now set goals to motivate myself and turn my vision into reality. Professional Development is very core in the competitive job market, and thus I am working to ensure that my knowledge, skills and experiences meet the job market demand to improve my chances of employment. I am looking forward to go for attachment in one of the research institutes, where I have already applied for. I now know how to write a presentable cover letter and CV, and how to negotiate for a competitive salary. I understand qualities that employers value and the necessary skills that I need in order to be hired. I believe I will have a successful interview when I will be looking for employment in the near future, because I will be too equipped to be ignored. Networking was something I didn’t value that much. However, I have resolved to connect with my lecturers for they have vast knowledge and experiences that is essential in my career development. I have learned to keep positive people in my network, and expand the circle of my network using every opportunity I get when I meet people in scope with my career. I will ensure I am known by them not just knowing them. Furthermore, I have learned to use social media as a resourceful platform to brand myself professionally. It is always everyone’s desire to be financially independent. Budgeting my money and time are the core values I also adopted from LEMP. Currently, I am saving up for my furnishing business that I plan to start during the long holiday. My health is my wealth, for without good health my wealth is useless and my purpose won’t be accomplished. I am reading articles on good nutrition and exercise. I am planning to have a weekly program of exercising. I have resolved to take care of my body for it is the vehicle to fulfilling my purpose on earth. After the module on Leadership Development I took an evaluation of myself as a leader and an agent of change. This made me desire to be a transformational leader like Jesus Christ, who was principled-centred, with strong character and integrity, and above all, spiritually founded. I desire to be a wise leader who will lead by example as I direct and guide others towards achievement of set objectives. I have also resolved that books on good leadership will be part of my library too. I am planning to nurture those behind me with reference to 2 Timothy 2:2. I believe with these skills and knowledge, I am fully equipped to be an agent of change with felt impact on my generation through the guidance of God and the Holy Spirit." Loice Mukami Kariuki, LEMP Season 6 Alumni and student at the University of Nairobi.
"For lack of better words, LEMP to me has been awesome and deep. It has really impacted my life. All the modules were helpful. They were eye-openers and really challenged me to question how I live my life. I will just share my take outs from each module: Spiritual Development: God created us for a purpose and our lives begin when we discover why we were created. I now understand well what being created in the image and likeness of God means. I am now certain of my purpose on earth, which is teaching the word of God. I still don't know how I will do it though I have decided to start within my circles. However, I am now taking classes on christian disciplines, doctrines and apologetics at Pathway Institute (in Mamlaka Hill Chapel) in order to prepare for the task. Its my hope and prayer that God will continue using me for the advancement of His Kingdom. Financial Development: If the picture of your future is not clear, you are not living. We all want to achieve financial stability but that alone is not enough if we do not take actions. That's the reality that hit me hard in the face and I decided to have a clear picture of my future. I always told myself that the best time to invest is yet to come only to be told that it was 10 years ago. For a start, I have opened an M-pesa and a photocopy shop in Machakos University. It is now operational and I want to add more machines (computers and printers) so that it will be a fully equipped cyber cafe come May this year. From this one step, my entrepreneurial journey has started and I won't stop until I have more chains of business. Personal Development: I didn't know much about personal development before I joined LEMP. I am now working on how to activate my dormant strength. I have also added a new skill. I enrolled for a driving school and I will be completing my test next week. Professional Development: One of the most educative classes. I used to send the same cover letter and CV for every job application. You can guess well: I was never called for interviews. I have now learned on how to check for details in the websites of hiring organisations, know the skills needed for the position and edit my CV and cover letter to match the position. I am now confident since I now know how to apply for a job and how to conduct myself during interviews. Networking Development: How could I know that there's something called online brand? I always knew that what happens in my private social media accounts is private. I learned that "internet never forgets' and that employers check the profiles of employees and prospective employees. I have updated all my accounts and I will now be careful on what what I post online. I realized that the people who I thought were in my network were not. I am the one who knows them but they have no idea who I am. Networking is not about who you know but who knows you. I have taken an initiative to get in contact with the people who I desire to be in my professional network and also create new networks. Physical Development: "Without health, wealth is useless." That quote just explains everything. The class was very informative. I won't forget the effects of drugs in the body, the importance of water, exercise and good diet. I will apply the information for my own physical development and also advice others accordingly. GOD BLESS LEMP." Daniel Musili, LEMP Season 6 Alumni and Student at the University of Nairobi.
Last week, the gods decided I needed to attend one of those peace workshops in the lead up to the general election in some fancy hotel in the heart of the city. The chandelier obsessed conference hall is dotted with men in well-cut Brioni suits, and ladies in colourful, royal elegance Hillary-Clinton-like power suits twenging stereotypically their NGO jargon of capacity building, milestones, indicators, outcomes, deliverables and sustainable goals. Without warning we are slapped with this commanding voice: Ladies and gentlemen, kindly take your seats we are about to start. Heheh! the Kenyan in me wants, sorry, must put the face to the voice. Its the same Kenyan genes that runs towards an accident instead of away from. So, like a typical Kenyan brought up around and about the maize plantations of the Rift Valley and blessed with a height challenge, I shamelessly struggle to stand on my toes and even use the table for support in an endeavour to see who was that commanding us. Well, and that's when I saw her walking in. Everything was working for her. Her illegitimate weave perched on her dry skull fell almost perfectly on her shoulders. Her smile was absorbing. Nearly charming. Her sequined dress complimented her workshop shoes but somewhat ridiculed her handbag. She walked with a swag borrowed from Scandals Season 4. She was what men tucked in a dingy tavern drinking discounted 'happy hour' alcohol and self-praising about their side dishes and Japan imported juggernauts will call hot and sexy. And who could blame them? In any case, in this part of the Sub-Saharan hemisphere, she probably would be the closest they would ever get to the Kardashians. She had this nice, long flowery legs that will make a man going through middle life crisis to sell his ancestral land and ship her ass and multiple monstrous weaves to the Seychelles for the weekend. Her African skin was smooth like a well-ironed nylon dress. She gave the appearance of a high value, high maintenance, well-read, well-travelled, well-exposed, intelligent damsel. In fact, suffice for me to add she looked like one of those I-got-my-own independent women, who probably invented sunscreen or lipstick in some poorly lit laboratory back in her wild campus days. She looked like a pretty thing that devours for breakfast pages of a technical book about empowerment of African women. As you can objectively see, everything was working for her. Well, everything - until she opened her cute mouth to speak. The richness, quality and diversity in her ignorance slapped everyone in the room like a bad omen. Initially, I had entertained the un-married thought of chit-chatting with her after the workshop. Maybe if I am lucky, take a selfie with her as I whisper a few naughty luhya proverbs in her ears . Obviously in the selfie, her hand will be on my shoulders, or why not, my waist. And since she can't get enough of my warm personality and luhya-ness, she will slap my phone with her number. I will promise to call her as soon as it takes a village cock to enjoy its conjugal rights. Unfortunately, all that un-married thoughts disappeared as soon as she began talking. Don't get me wrong though. I had no problem with her constitutional right of freedom of speech. My problem was her audacity to sunbath her ignorance in public. I left that workshop later in the day disturbed by the fact that most of us don't take time and effort to invest in knowledge and information. We simply live like zombies, talking, shouting, reasoning and operating on whimps, emotions and hearsay. We don't take time to research, study and acquire information, facts and figures. As a result, we walk around smartly dressed but with no substance between our ears. We go for meetings, job interviews, hell ya even on dates, proudly unprepared and happily ignorant. For most of us, the last book we ever read was the last time we were sitting for an exam. We have been conditioned to only read for exams. We are allergic to books. No wonder we have more bars and brothels than bookshops. I am tired of meeting beautiful ladies who are looking for a well-educated, successful man but they can't hold a mature conversation for more than three seconds, before they revert back to Keeping Up with the Kardashians, soap operas and types of weaves. I am tired of meeting men wearing well-cut suits with polished nails and an expensive attitude stuffed inside their six-packs, but can't talk anything beyond the English Premier League and their sexual escapades. We speak too much. Listen less. Read nothing, except those bipartisan, tribalistic gutter press designed to rave up our ethnic emotions and political affiliations for sale and profit margins. I challenge you today to interrogate your source of information and knowledge. I challenge you to interrogate their intentions and objectives. Knowledge and information isn't acquired by osmosis. Great and successful people in life take time to acquire and invest in knowledge. They always talk from a point of knowledge and clear understanding of issues, not emotions and rumours. And like our damsel above, lets not suffer from the course of beauty without brains. Study things. Seek to understand stuff. Be knowledgeable. Get exposed. Travel. Ask questions. Interrogate things and people. Seek to know. So that you speak from the point of knowledge and understanding. And by the way, if you have nothing to say or don't understand an issue well, for the love of John the Baptist - please shut your mouth. Don't simply speak because you have a mouth. If you can't improve the quality of silence, shut up. Even Proverbs 21:23 (NLT) says, watch your tongue and KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT, and you will stay out of trouble. Wisdom is the principal thing, and in all your getting, get understanding, Proverbs 4:7 expressingly puts it. While without mincing words, Proverbs 15:14 (NLT) says a wise person is hungry for knowledge while the fool feeds on trash. WOW! Simply put, a wise person is always eager to learn and be enriched with information, while a fool is busy feeding on gossips, rumours and ignorance. No wonder Hosea 4:6 says my people perish for lack of knowledge. What are you feeding your mind on? Image Credit: Ghanacelebrities.com