Personal Memoirs

Thanksgiving 102: Dear 23 Year Old Frances…

Dear 23 Year Old Frances,
Why are you all gloomy?
You call it reflection but is this really reflection? Reflection on what really?

 
You planned to go out to Erin Ijesha waterfall today, you didn’t.
You planned to instead go the stadium, talk to Daddy and listen for directions, you didn’t.
You planned to get a cake and go to the Correctional home for kids to celebrate, you didn’t.
Now you can’t even sing and say thank you to Daddy.
You are playing “this God is too good oh” but you can’t sing.
If you don’t want to see what God has done, I will remind you.
Remember that 16 year old girl who was almost raped because she didn’t have any wisdom?
Do you still see her in you?
Remember that girl who was in an abusive relationship?
Do you still see her in you?
Remember that girl who thought God couldn’t use her for anything good?
Do you still see her in you?
What do you see in you now? Be honest.

 

I see Jesus.
I see His life in you.
I see Him take you from the mire clay and turn you into a star for Him.
I see His purpose alive in you.
I see you living forth His purpose for your life and touching lives while at it.
I see you being called God’s somebody in the same place where you have been called a nobody.

 

I was going through your pictures from years back and all I could see is Jesus shining through your smile.
He is the life in you.
He is the one worth celebrating and He is in you.
He gave you life when you had none.
It’s been almost 5years of living in Him and today marks the start of another year in Him.
Hasn’t He been good to you Frances?
Do you need someone else to tell you this truth?
Hasn’t Jesus been awesome to you?
Hasn’t He been good? Too good?
Another year of living forth His purpose for your life is about to begin, and you know, it can only be better than the last.
So rejoice!
Throw out the works.
Tie your wrapper to Church tomorrow and dance like you don’t care.
Share your testimony with gratitude in your heart and when words fail you, let the tears roll… yes He sees those tears too.

 
I recently read your letter to your 21 year old self.
I also read your wishes for your 22 year old self and I know that the same desires in your heart in the year gone past still burns in you today.
That you will forever live in Christ Jesus.
That His lines of purpose will never grow slack in your life.
That you will run the race He has set you on till the end.
Last year showed you clear paths on the path of purpose God has placed you on and you should expect more this year.
And as usual, also expect God to provide for every journey/errand that He sends you on.
Fear not and ask no “hows”.
Whatever He says to you, may your answer forever be “yes Lord”.
Wherever He says, may your answer always be “yes Lord”.

 
And I prophesy upon your life:
You will always walk in the fearless Spirit that God has deposited in you.
You will blaze through seeming difficulties like they mean nothing.
You will endure the endurable even as you work for God and all trials on the path God has placed you on shall turn to joy.
The opinions of men shall never hold you back.
The thoughts of your Father shall your heart continually be fixed on.
You shall be a blessing to everyone who comes in contact with you and the children from your womb – both physical and spiritual shall call you blessed.
Lives will find their footing in Christ through you.
Hearts will be drawn to the God in you.
Through you, your family, friends, acquaintances and strangers shall be saved.
God’s work and word shall manifest in your life.
Your life in Christ shall never regress, rather where you are spiritually right now will be the least that you shall ever be.
Every year that you stand to celebrate another addition to your age will see you moving farther into God’s purpose and plan for your life.
You will not just grow in age but also grow in the wisdom and knowledge that God gives.
The world has nothing of its own in you.
You are not drawn by the world’s goods, you are drawn, fixed in and find pleasure in the kingdom’s goods.
The works of your hands are blessed.
Men and women are given unto you as helpers on your path of purpose.
Men and women yield to God’s tug on their hearts to help you on your God-given journey.
Strangers that you know not are raised by God to help you.
God-given provision abound towards you.
Your heart belongs to God and shall never belong to anyone who God doesn’t approve of.
When God finally brings your Adam to you, you both shall be a formidable army in the kingdom – shining God’s light, drawing others into the God in you both.
Your union shall bring forth a better him and a better you.
Your children shall proclaim God’s name in the next generation.
Their children also shall proclaim God’s name in the next generation and if God tarries, every offspring from your womb shall never grow apart from the Lord.
Your family shall all be saved through you.
God’s light in them shall shine as they live in Him. Everyone of their souls belong to the Lord. And they may not know it yet, but because you belong to the Okoro family, everyone of the Okoro’s soul rests in the Lord.
Their hearts are set on fire for Him.
They grow and never derail from the path that God has set before them.
None of them shall marry wrongly without God’s approval. And the tree of the Okoro family belongs to the Lord.

 

As for you Frances, stay fixed in the Lord.
He watches over you.
He watches over your every step.
He sees you in the darkness.
He sees you in the light.
His heart is tender towards you, and He loves you as His very own – the one whom He shed His blood for.
Let His sacrifice never go to waste in your life and as you grow, draw deeper and closer into Him.
Only in Him shall your light glow.
Only in Him shall you get to the heights He has pre-ordained for you.
You are not just a soul drifting through earth. God has called you in Him, for Him, to be in Him.
So stay fixed in the Lord, the lover of your soul, your husband.
Love Him like your heart can never love anyone else in the world.
Let Him be first in everything you do.
Live for Him and Him alone – for the audience of one.
When He says go, go in His name.
And when He says wait, wait on Him.

 
I know that you feel the loneliness of being in a distant place right now but you know that He took you away from the hustle and bustle for a reason.
That place is your building ground.
That place is your foundation.
And it won’t be long now, the hustle and bustle you will have to get in for me will need the foundation I am setting in place now.
Let not the words of men sway you, let me build you and build you in me.
You are the Lord’s Frances.
You are the Lord’s Frances…forever.

 

I know you will read this when you step into your 24th year and see the prophecies in this letter coming to life before your very eyes.
And even more than the words in this letter, you will know by then that indeed, eyes have not seen, ears have not heard what God has prepared for you from the beginning of time.

 
Remain in Him Frances.
Remain in Him.
Remain in Jesus, the lover of your soul.
In Him and Him alone will you find yourself and all that you are meant to be. And it is your Husband’s good pleasure that you grow into the full stature of what He has prepared for you.
So remain in Him.

 
Happy Birthday my Frances Oghenerukevwe Okoro.
Be not surprised if September 6th 2016 meets you with lots of changes – God-given-good changes taking place (and some changes already done before the year rolls by again).

 

Love,
22 Year Old Frances.

*****************************************
I am alone in my house, finally got around to thinking about my birthday tomorrow September 6th, and had no words to put what I was feeling into words.
I tend to slip into a reflective mode when it’s close to my birthday and I guess that that’s what caught up with me tonight.
I thought that the best way to get my heart to say what it truly felt was to put fingers to paper (or phone) and I was right.
The result is the letter you just read.
Everything up there just flowed as I wrote.
God’s message to me?
A message to myself?
A reminder to myself?
All of the above.
This I am sure of: God has been good and continues to be good!
My words cannot quantify it and nights like this I wonder what kind of life I would have been living if He didn’t save me. That is my biggest testimony because this Frances you see only lives because of Jesus.

 
Last year on my birthday, I asked you all to please pray for God’s will to be done in my life, concerning His purpose for me and the result of that prayer is still evident today.
This year I simply ask you all to prophesy great things into my life.
I don’t know how I started writing and pronouncing the words in my letter above, but as I wrote I knew that this is what I want everyone who reads this post to do for me.
Whatever is laid on your heart to speak into my life, please do. (only good and godly things sha oh.lol).

 

God bless you as you use the words of your mouth to bless my life.
Thank you.

 

Frances Okoro,
5th September 2015… for record purposes. Hehe.

 

P.S-If you desire to give me a gift (wink), you know where to find me 🙂

 

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12 Comments

  • Reply
    Mobolaji
    September 6, 2015 at 8:24 am

    Happy birthday my sweetheart! You’re blessed in the morning and evening. You’re blessed in your going out and in your coming in.
    I don’t know why I’m teary eyed as I type this, but I know it has to do with how you’ve been such a blessing to me!
    You”ve opened your heart to be used by God and you’ve blessed others in the process.
    This is the beginning of a new era in your life. It is from grace to grace for you from this moment on.
    Do not be dismayed or discouraged, the Lord is the Lion of the tribe of Judah, He is your shield and protector. He knows the number of hair on your head and gave you a Destiny before you were ever conceived. He saw all you went through but also knew He’d use you to help others who are going through what you went through.
    My dear friend, again I say you’re blessed!
    Happy 23rd baby girl! I love you more than words can say!
    Muah!

    • Reply
      Frances Okoro
      September 6, 2015 at 9:35 am

      The smiles on my lips right now are simply smiles that my heart cannot keep in..they must show forth.

      Bolaji…. can we please have another word for thank you? I need it right now.
      I love you three girl…God bless you in more and more and more awesome ways! thank you! And amen and amen and amen!

  • Reply
    Agnez Audu
    September 6, 2015 at 10:25 am

    Happy Birthday Honey, I’m grateful to God almighty for HIS wondrous works in your life…your journey so far,has and is a testimony that challenges and inspires me for all time.”Daughter of encouragement” the apple of God’s eyes, the Lord’s delight, the Lord’s bride, the woman after God’s own heart, the Lord’s friend, the Lord’s minstrel, I could go on and on but words are too limited to express sometimes how we feel…and so my heart is full of gratitude to God on ur behalf for picking u up from where u are and giving u dis glorious and beautiful destiny and purpose where people can think of you and the work of God upon you and salute dis baba God….wish I cud be there to hug,pray,peck and shower you with gifts but dis distance leaves an ache in my stomach.but I’m glad dat all dis can be done on my knees! I love u woman of God as a friend, sister and confidant. God bless dis day for you and bring all d desires of ur heart to pass…Amen “still blowing u kisses though”

    • Reply
      Frances Okoro
      September 6, 2015 at 5:15 pm

      My Agnes… i’m short of words.
      I Sooooo wish I was in Lagos but this season go soon finish here sha.lol

      I’m so thankful for you.
      So thankful.
      Amen and amen and amen!
      Love you three girl!

  • Reply
    Itunu
    September 6, 2015 at 7:21 pm

    Awwwww, oya let me sing for you first. So glad I didn’t miss this:
    Happy birthday to youuuu
    Happy birthday to youuuuu
    Happy birthday to youuuu Frances!!!
    Happy birthday to you!
    I wish you, many happy returns of da day!
    Long life and prosperity!!
    Hip HIP HIP HURRAY!!

    Hmmn, I don’t even know where to start but here’s me wishing you a prosperous and healthy soul as you grow in grace and strength. May God continue to bless you and use you to reach out to the souls that are in drought, souls that havent even found God yet and may He give you the wisdom that you need to see His will for your life and walk in it for then will you have good success. You are blessed and favored. I’ll send you something to your mail. it’s a song I did as karoake. Look out for it o and I’ll buzz you on twitter when I send it. Please accept that as a birthday gift till we meet in person.

    Much love dear. xo!

    • Reply
      Frances Okoro
      September 7, 2015 at 11:31 am

      Hehehe, Itunu!
      Can’t wait to hear your voice, singing for real for moi…yay! thank youuuu! I accept it oh, I accept it..but you must also sing when we meet 🙂

      Amen and amen and amen to your prayers, now that, is my bestest gift ever.
      Thank you so much dear.
      Love and lots of loooove!

  • Reply
    D.O
    September 6, 2015 at 11:04 pm

    Happy birthday dear Francess! I celebrate you and the wonder that you are and thank God for all the AMAZING things He is doing with your life.
    As you step into this new year, your light continues to shine brighter and brighter. You will continue to glow and bask in the aura and grace of God upon your life. You are blessed beyond human understanding, kings will come to the brightness of your rising, lines will continually fall for you in pleasant places. Your steps will be continually ordered by God, your ways will continually please Him!Your children will surround your table, they will rise and call you blessed, your husbands heart will safely trust in you   The Lord God is your Strength, your personal bravery, and your invincible army; He will make your feet like hinds’ feet and will make you to walk [not to stand still in terror, but to walk] and make [spiritual] progress upon your high places [of trouble, suffering, or responsibility]! You will know & enjoy peace, joy,love, soundhealth, increase, wisdom, favour, newness, strenght, fulfillment and the very best of God like never b4.. You will thrive and prosper in your purpose and in all you set your heart,mind and hands to do in Jesus Mighty Name..

    I welcome you into your best year yet..
    You are preserved and wrapped in God’s love now &always!
    Many happy returns of this blessed day.
    Kisses!

    • Reply
      Frances Okoro
      September 7, 2015 at 11:39 am

      D.O!
      Amen and amen and amen!
      I should frame your comment and paste it as a confession to be said over my life everyday…
      Come to think of it, that’s what I will do with the comments on this post..the words of our mouth are powerful and can be used to speak great things over our lives.

      Thank you so much D.O! Thank you!

  • Reply
    Gloria
    September 8, 2015 at 12:58 am

    Happy birthday Frances! I pray that this new year would be the most blessed & fulfilling for you till date. I pray that you would continue to be a blessing to do many. And that your relationship with God would grow in leaps and bounds in this 23rd year.

    I think about you, Frances, and I’m happy & inspired. I had a list of ‘things to achieve by 30’ when I turned 20. My life took a very different turn, some of those goals became irrelevant. I’m fine & grateful for where I am except for one thing, I didn’t make progress in my relationship with God like I hoped. As I’m approaching 30, I’m realizing how contingent life really is. How being grounded in Christ should be the primary pursuit of life. No wonder Solomon, in all his wisdom, advised to remember God in our youth.

    All those things that are lacking in your life are nothing compared to the relationship you have built with God. Your achievements, family ties & possessions could be lost or even lose their value in a second. Jesus is the only certainty, in life or death He can be counted upon. My dear Frances, one thing is needful: and you have chosen that good part which shall not be taken away from you.

    • Reply
      Frances Okoro
      September 8, 2015 at 1:22 pm

      Gloria… I want to hug you, but I see just my phone in front of me…
      “That my relationship with God will grow in leaps and bounds this year and beyond”… oh, there’s more, I know that there’s more in Him and I pray for grace to steep in deeper into who Jesus is.
      Thank you soooo much.
      Thank you.

      And it’s not too late to start digging in deeper for you too. Years may have gone by, but there are more ahead by God’s grace in which you can know Him more intimately, starting now.
      I pray for grace for you to reach out to God and be rooted deeply in Him, so much so that having Him is wayyy better than anything else.

      Thank you again Gloria.
      Thank you.

  • Reply
    Tope BANKS
    September 8, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    This is coming late but please I am sorry.

    Frances has soared so high that she has become a dominant oak tree in the forest. The abundance of the sea has been converted to you. Your sons and daughters have come from afar with their gold and silver(Ponds,Dollars,Naira,Yen). Kings and Queens have become your foster parents. Your light has shone so brightly that you cannot be ignored. Frances the glory of God has become your covering. The lines have falling uno you in pleasant places you have a goodly heritage..No weapon fashioned against you,prospers.
    Happy birthday Love.

    P.S No tie wrapper go church o lol.

    • Reply
      Frances Okoro
      September 10, 2015 at 1:48 pm

      Amen and amen Tope!
      No wahala @your “I’m late”

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