2021 Birthday Post: Levelling Up

Ayọ̀délé Ìbíyẹmí
4 min readOct 12, 2021


I: Gratitude

Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.

On my birthday every year, I muster all the energy I can to write a short post documenting my thoughts. Since I started, I have tried to be consistent with it but every year, I write the post only a few hours before my birthday. I jokingly told a friend recently that the year I write my birthday post days or even weeks before the actual birthday, I would consider myself as having attained a new level of maturity. I hope to keep maturing and documenting my progress. Writing this is important for me, as it reflects the state of my mind and life at different times. Also, this is an attempt to track my journey, my progress and the processes.

In the past year, I have made tremendous progress in life. It might not exactly show publicly (even though I think it does) but I know that I have made progress and I am grateful for it. Progress is often easy to ignore but I have learnt not to ignore progress. I am often tempted to think that I am not where I want to be but I am fully convinced that I am exactly where God wants me to be. In this, God’s timing is supreme and it has proven to be the best for me, repeatedly.

I am immensely grateful to God for His leading and direction. God has led me step by step and He has been with me every step of the way. Also, God, in His mercies has sent people to me to do the work that He wants to be done. I have had the pleasure of enjoying the comradeship of friends, neighbours, siblings, and mentors. I have a small circle of friends even though I think I know quite a number of people. I make friends easily but I am not very good with keeping up. The friends that I have are mostly the ones who did not give up on me and I am grateful to them for that. I am particularly grateful to my mentor, Dr. TS, who took an interest in me and has been guiding me since we met. It started as a random interaction but now, she is one of the very few people I can share personal and professional worries with. Each time I remember her and the many wonderful people I have in my life, I just know that God is at work in my life and they are one of His ways of reminding me of the work.

II: Assurance

O God our help in ages past

I am assured that God is with me, He will never leave me and I will be fine. God who has helped me in times past will always help me. I have been in deep shit several times but God always gets me out. One thing I am so sure of that I can take to the bank is that heaven will not fall on me. Whatever happens, I will surmount it and move on to the next good thing, I said ‘next good thing’ because only good things happen to me. I now understand the power of words so I constantly declare good things about myself, The world is not ready for the greatness that I am. I have also started embracing the responsibilities that come with being me. My destiny requires a lot of work and that is why my journey is like no other person’s.

III: Hope

Recently, Pastor Olubi Johnson preached a message that resonated with me so much. He used an analogy that is not exactly new but made a mark on me. While talking about the specificities of each person’s journey, he mentioned that if the goal of life is to get to 10, each person will have to walk their own route to the number 10. For some, it would be 4+6, it would be 5+5 for some others. There are several ways of getting 10 and no one should try to use another person’s method in their quest for their own number 10. We owe ourselves a lot of help and support but we do not have to copy the exact model of anyone else’s journey. Again, I am grateful for the people in my life because they correct and guide me. Few hours before I wrote this, my friend Ife was telling me that I can be implacable if I feel sufficiently offended even though it is rare. It is a flaw I am doing my best to correct as I am continually learning that adult life eschews absolutes. Also, my father recently told me that ọ̀rẹ́ kìí yà, ọ̀rọ̀ ló máa ń dínkù (Friends don’t separate; only conversations reduce). I have to be more tolerable and extend more grace as I am a very flawed human myself.

IV: Uncharted Territories

One notable thing I also learnt in the past year is how to deal with uncharted territories. Growth is a stressful thing but it is also necessary. Every day is an uncharted territory but life has conditioned us to mystify uncharted territories and fidget. Every day in life is new so we might as well go into every new stage with courage and some panache. God hardly ever gives the full picture at once; it is usually step by step, precept by precept. Enjoy the now and walk confidently in new territories.

Till next year, God willing.