Was Apostle Paul A Polished Speaker?

How much do you know about Apostle Paul of the New Testament?

Many people will agree that he was a man of high intellect, he was knowledgeable, passionate about the course of the gospel, and full of divine revelation.

He knew his way through any kind of argument. As a man highly schooled in Judaism, Paul had a good grasp of law and history as well.

Coupled with the uncommon revelations he received directly from the Lord Jesus Himself, no one could parallel him in the most accurate communication of the gospel of Christ.

It is obvious therefore that there are many fantastic things we can say about Apostle Paul. But was he a polished speaker?

You might think so, but what he said about himself concerning that question may shock you.

You could easily be excused if you pass Apostle Paul as a very eloquent person – a man who is very “fluent or persuasive in speaking or writing.”

That he was very persuasive in his writings is pretty obvious in the way he marshalled his points in the various Epistles penned by him and the many arguments and counter-arguments he had to be engaged in for the advancement of the gospel.

Despite all these, Paul admitted in one of his Epistles that he was not a skilled speaker. Or as he put it, “…I am unskilled in speech…”

But even if I am unskilled in speech, yet I am not so in knowledge; in fact, in every way we have made this evident to you in all things (2 Corinthians 11:6).

Although he acknowledged that he is vast and skilled in knowledge, Paul told the Corinthian church that he was “unskilled in speech.”

In other words, you could say Paul meant he was not a polished speaker, a trained orator or a captivating public speaker. Was he just being humble or telling a fact?

What do you think?

©Copyright 2017 | Victor Uyanwanne

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The Very First Post On This Blog

a-poem-we-know-by-victor-uyanwanne
We Know

The post you are about to read was the very first content published on this blog. As I said in the post before this one, this blog just turned two years old.

To further commemorate the milestone, I am reposting the pioneer post here for you to read. It was initially published when there were no followers on this Blog. That tells me that you may not have seen it yet.

Now that I have you, kindly indulge me as I present to you, “We Know,” the very first and oldest post on this blog. I guarantee you will find something useful in it.

We Know

We know we have potentials,
But we are not doing enough to develop them.
What is the use of a vibrant energy,
That remains buried and untapped?

We know the future is bright,
But we keep living in the past!
How can we ever enter and enjoy the future,
If we don’t ever leave the past behind?

We know our lives could be better,
But we hesitate to do things to improve on them.
Why are we waiting and delaying?
The room of improvement is never filled up!

We know we are not so perfect,
But we fail to work on our weaknesses!
Can a dirty china become clean,
If it has not been washed at all?

We know we don’t like to be criticised,
But we never cease from doing it to others.
What makes us think we would be likeable?
When our words ache like pain?

We know we like being appreciated,
But we think other’s don’t deserve the same.
If we want appreciation to come around,
We ought to start giving it first to others.

We know we ought to make more progress in life,
But we fear to take the first steps forward.
How can we get to where we want to be,
If we don’t put one foot in front of the other?

We know we crave for love and forgiveness,
But we ourselves are never generous with such.
How can we be so very surprised?
That we don’t get loved and forgiven by others as we want?

We know we crave respect and admiration from others,
But we are less concerned about our self-respect.
Why then are we so bothered that we don’t get so respected,
As much as we think we deserve?

Best friends forever
Best friends forever

We know how good it feels to be welcomed,
But we don’t always spread our hands to welcome others.
Yet we wonder why people don’t always warm up to us,
Like the insect to the nectar in a flower.

We know we are not without blemish,
But we are always quick to cast the stone on others
Why don’t we treat other people
As we want to be treated?

We know Rome was not built in day,
But we cry and worry over every little slip.
With our heart filled with so many worries,
How can we enjoy a deep sleep at night?

We know we shouldn’t go to bed when the roof is on fire,
But we pretend it’s just a little flick of flame.
Why then do we wonder and cry aloud,
When all we have is turned to ashes?

We know every seed produces after its own kind,
But some of us are those who sow corn and expect a harvest of potatoes.
Who would be ever so disappointed,
As much as someone like that would be?

We know we should say ‘I am sorry’ sometimes,
But our pride keeps us from saying it.
Doesn’t it matter to us that our friends and family are hurt,
When we fail to say “I am sorry, please forgive me?”

We know it’s good for us to give.
But we hoard the things we ought to share.
Have we forgotten the Master’s rule:
“Give and it shall be given to you?”

We know we should give thanks in all things,
But we say all things are not okay to give thanks, so we complain.
Are we now wiser than the Master,
Who said, “give thanks in all things?”

 

©CopyRight 2017 | Victor Uyanwanne

5 Simple Ways A Christian Youth Can Build His or Her Self Confidence

the righteous are as bold as a lion.

Every body needs to have self-confidence – that “feeling of trust in one’s abilities, qualities, and judgement.” Not much progress can be made by a life ravaged by self-doubt, especially if you are a young person.

Earlier in the year, I had the privilege of being invited to speak to a group of Christian youths. The talk centred on building self-confidence as a Christian youth. This post presents an excerpt from the things I shared with those beautiful young minds.

5 simple ways you can consistently build up your self-confidence.

1. Live righteously

As a Christian youth, don’t be a law-breaker. Live righteously and you will have no course to bury your head in shame. Provide 28:1 tells us that “The wicked flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion.”

There is a kind of self-confidence that comes from living a righteous life that you can’t get by any other means. In other words, living righteously makes you bold.  You cannot afford to live your life anyhow. The word of God should be your ultimate guide in life.

How can a young person stay on the path of purity? By living according to your word. Psalm 119:9.

Obedience to the word of God will help you build your self-esteem. David boldly said, “… I would not be put to shame when I consider all your commands,” Psalm 119:6.

2. Have a good image about yourself.

As a Christian youth, how do you see yourself? How you see yourself will affect your level of confidence.

Remember that you are a son or a daughter of the most-high God. Do not harbour thoughts that undermine this lofty position of yours.

You know what the Bible says: As a man thinks in his heart, so is he  (Prov. 23:7). We can paraphrase this to read, “As a youth thinks in his heart so is he.”

When it comes to building your self-confidence as a Christian youth, it matters how you see yourself. If you see yourself as a nonentity, you will carry yourself as one. If you see yourself as a beloved child of God, you naturally feel that way.

You should have a positive image of who you are. If you always think negatively about yourself, your self-esteem will be low and your confidence level will be low too.

Focus on who you are in Christ. That’s your most important identity. Don’t let anything else define you. Irrespective of your socioeconomic status, remember that Christ in you is the hope of glory.

3. Dress well

As a Christian youth, you can’t feel confident about yourself dressing in a sloppy way. Let your dressing be always on point and you will have one more reason to feel confident. As the late Archbishop Benson Idahosa once advised, “Dress the way you want to be addressed.”

You don’t have to dress outlandishly to prove a point. Dress neatly and smartly. Even the Bible says, “wash your clothes,” (Numb 21:24), so personal cleanliness should be taken seriously.

4. Be very good at what you do.

This is a challenge to be excellent in whatever you do. Excel in your studies, in your career or vocation. Whatever your hands find to do as a Christian youth, do them well. Don’t find an excuse to be lazy or be mediocre.

Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean [men]. Proverbs 22:29

You have what it takes to excel in life.  The Spirit of God is in you. The wisdom of God is accessible to you. The power of God is available to you.

5. Be knowledgeable.

The wheel of progress is largely driven by knowledge. As a Christian youth in this information age, do not be left behind in the quest for relevant knowledge.

Know your scriptures and know more than the scriptures too. Whether it is history or sciences, know more than the average person. Refuse to be a pushover…

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2Timothy 2:15.

As much as you can, gather knowledge; read voraciously, study widely, research deeply and attend relevant seminars. Do everything within your power to be knowledgeable in at least one or two areas of endeavour.

Always be in the know. You have heard that knowledge is power. Knowledge gives you an edge. Let me add that knowledge boosts confidence too.

How else can a Christian youth build self-confidence? Please share and leave a comment.

 

©CopyRight 2016 | Victor Uyanwanne

BE KIND ENOUGH TO SHARE WHAT YOU KNOW

BE KIND ENOUGH TO SHARE WHAT YOU KNOW
By Victor Uyanwanne

Some people think they don’t know so much about anything to be able to teach it to other people. But that’s probably not true. I believe there is always something you know that someone else close-by or afar off may not know, which he may need to know in order to lead a better, healthier and happier life.

Don’t wait until you become an expert before you can begin to share what you know with other people who may need your knowledge. What we often don’t realise, is that no matter how little we know, there is always someone we know much better than who will be interested in what we know. So sharing your so-called ‘little’ knowledge will no doubt be of help to such people.

Nobody will know much if everybody waited to become certified experts before they began to share what they knew . It will not be kind to withhold useful information that someone might need simply because you think you are not an expert yet. So I am of the opinion that sharing what you know with people that need it will not be a bad idea. You will be surprised how much it will improve the quality of lives of people around you.

If we relate with the right kind of people, we will get the right kind of information at relatively no cost.

Sharing what you know can enable people make better decisions that will improve their lives. As I began to think about writing this article, I mentioned to a colleague in the office that during the break hour I would go see an ophthalmologist whose eye clinic was on retainership with our company. The place is located about 3 kilometres away from our upscale office location.

“Why go all that distance,” asked the colleague, “when there is a good one right on our street here”?

“Really? I didn’t I know that!” I enthused. Following my colleague’s suggestion, I simply walked only about 100 meters to get to the eye-clinic he mentioned. As it turned out, and to my pleasant surprise, I got an excellent service from there. That little information volunteered by my colleague saved me the stress of having to drive down a farther distance along a vehicular traffic prone area on that hot afternoon.

When I returned to my desk in the office, I thanked my colleague for the information and also quipped, “The quality of decision one makes depends on the quality of information available to one.” Without wasting time my colleague replied me, “The quality of information one gets depends on the quality of questions one asks”. A third colleague overheard our discussion and also added his voice, “Good quality information costs money, so you have to pay for this one….” We all shared a good laugh over all this.

Besides helping you in clarifying or improving your own knowledge, sharing your knowledge and experiences in life can make life better for someone else, near or afar off.

Well, to be honest, it is true that getting good quality information might cost money, but not necessarily all the time. If we relate with the right kind of people, we will get the right kind of information at relatively no cost. That’s the reason it will be appropriate to commit to sharing what you know so that others can benefit from you.

I don’t know about you, but as for me, I enjoy sharing useful information with people that need it. However I must admit that it is not always as easy as it may seem, especially when I don’t get the kind of positive feedback as I might rightly expect. I don’t mean to scare you here, but I believe getting you reminded that you might be criticized for sharing what you know may help you handle the challenges whenever they begin to come.

What you know now that you refuse to share may be what someone needs to hear to open his eyes to a brighter world than he is right now.

I am sure your background, education, training and experiences in life have afforded you the opportunity of knowing some things that someone else around may not necessarily know. Besides helping you in clarifying or improving your own knowledge, sharing your knowledge and experiences in life can make life better for someone else, near or afar off. Sometimes, you may not be able to go all out to do that, but giving little tips here and there as the need arises could be of immense help to someone.

“How do I start?”, you may ask. Here are a few suggestions to assist you:

• Be willing to be a teacher – you don’t have to be in a classroom setting to do that. Anywhere you find yourself where someone lacks a particular kind of useful knowledge you possess is a good point to begin. People can do things better if they have better tips made available to them. What you know now that you refuse to share may be what someone needs to hear to open his eyes to a brighter world than he is right now.

• Answer useful questions – when someone asks you to explain a concept you know or give information that may be of help to them, be kind and humble enough to do it. A local proverb in Nigeria says that “He who asks questions will never miss his way.” So if someone is humble enough to seek your knowledge by asking you appropriate questions, please be kind enough to answer them.

• Be ready to guide people – there are many people who want to know how you got where you are right now, or how you achieved what you have achieved. If such people want to be like you, please show them the way. “We see farther when we stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us.” More so sharing what you know does not decrease your knowledge stock. Isn’t that good pretty obvious?

Use any other strategy that works for you in sharing what you know. It is a world of no limits. Just don’t hoard your knowledge.

• Document your useful experiences in life. Don’t carry your wealth of experience to the great beyond just like that. Write a useful book so others can read about it. Long after you are gone, you will still be speaking via your books.
• Start a blog. Write about what you know. Share your experiences, unique or not so unique, it matters less. Your blog will reach people even in other climes that you might never meet face to face.

Create appropriate videos and post them on youtube for others to see. A number of times, I found some “how to…” videos on youtube to be very helpful. I remain grateful to all those who posted such knowledge sharing videos I have had course to access at one time or another.

Use other social media like Facebook, twitter etc to reach out to people in your cycle and beyond. Share useful tips there. Write useful articles and post them. A number of times, some people have told me that my posts on my Facebook page really helped, inspired or encouraged them. I can say the same thing about what some people posted on their facebook walls that I accessed.

Start a column in a local newspaper of your choice. Have you not noticed that people still read the traditional newspaper despite the internet revolution? Sharing what you know through this medium will sure reach people.

Organize seminar or workshop if you can. This may cost you a bit, but the impact will surprise you.

• If necessary, prepare relevant audio CDs and distribute them. This way, people can gain knowledge listening to you.

Do podcasting too if you can. Someone will be interested.

Use any other strategy that works for you in sharing what you know. It is a world of no limits. Just don’t hoard your knowledge.