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Her Version of Events, Lifestyle,

On Christianity

I have struggled with my faith over the last few years, not necessarily with believing in the existence of God but more around the day-to-day practice of my faith. 

There was this nagging question about whether or not I was a good Christian, which eventually made me stop going through the motions. 

I stopped going to church (this was easy because I had classes for professional exams on the weekends). I read the YouVersion verse for the day and nothing extra because I needed to understand why something that I had practised all my life left me feeling anxious and unhappy. 


The culture of questioning and digging into the scriptures to find answers as an individual isn’t promoted. Yes, we are encouraged to have devotions, but carefully printed outlines guide them; this serves a  purpose but doesn’t substitute for actually sitting and freely studying the Bible. 

So I started to do just that, study. I wanted to understand David’s story, not the abridged version I was taught in Sunday school because, for a man after God’s heart,  he engaged in practices the church would condemn him for today. I read books in the New Testament repeatedly, explored Isaiah and didn’t understand many chapters, but I read on anyway. 

The more I studied, the more the words came alive in my heart in a way they hadn’t ever before. I started to see connections for myself, like Psalms written by David that I could find the corresponding stories for in the books of Samuel, Kings or Chronicles. It helped me appreciate the Psalms and I started journaling my prayers, writing exactly how I felt to the Lord and laying it bare. 

I think I understand why David was a man after God’ heart; he simply went into God’s presence as he was, he didn’t attempt to sugarcoat his feelings or what his experiences were in the moment and simply let it all out at God’s feet. 

In my unravelling, I realised where my problem stemmed from; my introduction to Christ-focused on what I should and shouldn’t do. Sin was lifted higher than God’s love, leading to a vicious circle of guilt and no real transformation. Instead, there was anger in place of peace and kindness, judgement in place of compassion, and measuring others by the yardstick of what sins I have sufficiently stayed away from. 

It is cliche but you will never enjoy being a Christian till you understand God’s love, until you understand the simplicity of coming just as you are.


This is an evolving idea, I have twenty-odd years to organise religion to unpack, but if you read to the end, can you answer the simple question of why you practice the faith you do. 

2019, Her Version of Events, Lifestyle,

31st January 2019

Today, I attended an Open Mic event at Ouida Books, a bookstore in Ikeja GRA, I haven’t done something spontaneous in a while and I attended the event considering a few things I am learning.

At my office retreat last December, one of the questions asked during Mich Atagana’s talk was how she balanced work and living (the question didn’t come exactly like this, but this is how I like to think of the proverbial work-life balance). Mich answered that each person needed to define what balance means to them by starting with the things you love and making time out to do them.

Before then, I had never thought about it in that manner. I was always talking about the lack of balance in my life and had no exact strategy on how to achieve said balance. Where I sat in the audience, I decided to make a  list, it was a really short list. I didn’t want to make it too long and overwhelm myself before I even got started. Here is what my list contained;

1.       Reading (Essays and Novels)

2.       Taking Photos

3.       Videos Calls with my friends.

I know the third one is strange but having long conversations with my friends makes me really happy. The next thing I did was set out the steps on how to achieve these things.

1.            Read a new article every day, make a list of books to read every month and don’t feel bad if you don’t finish reading all the books, just keep reading.

2.            Take my camera out more often (I haven’t followed through on this, I make use of my phone)

3.            Set reminders to call my friends.

I started reading more, I wake up at about 6:30am everyday, say a prayer and instead of browsing away on Instagram, I read for about an hour before I get ready for work, I also read on my taxi rides on days I choose not to drive and any pod of free time I find during the day.

I started taking photos on my phone; of sunsets, making my friends pose or simply just taking a good old selfie. I know, nothing serious, but it gives me something creative to do every day.

Reminders do work, please use them. I called my friends, the ones willing to video chat and the one who just wanted to stick with voice calls. It feels good to be deliberate about connecting with people in your life. I feel less isolated and I don’t get lost in my head as often.

Here is what I noticed in the first few weeks of trying this; I stopped feeling on edge and snapping at everyone around me, I started sleeping better (my sleeping habit is still horrible but it has improved considerably) and I am feeling like the person I want to be; I have more room to accommodate people in my life and more love to give.

I took it a step further in the new year and made a longer list, taking into consideration the things that usually stress me and why they do. Imagine a balance scale with Stress on one side and ‘’Love Items’’ on the other side, the goal is to add more blocks to the Love Items to ensure it always outweighs the stress.

Here is what I added to the existing three items on my list.

1.       Attending literary events

2.       Travel; visit at least one new place/country before the first half of the year is over

3.       Resume daily journaling

I will keep adding to the list with passing months and see how it affects my attitude, my outlook on life and my overall wellbeing. I am not an expert at life, but this is something I have tried, it is working therefore I will keep at it.

Oh before I forget, please check out the Ignis Brothers Band, one of my greatest finds of 2019 and shoutout to my friend Toluyemi for attending the events with me.

2019, Her Version of Events, Lifestyle,

Things I am Loving in 2019 ​

I know it is too early to decide the things I am enjoying in 2019, but I am really hopeful and excited about all the things I can achieve this year hence the list, my attempt at documenting every moment this year from successfully completed projects to bad days and all the highs and lows in between.

  • Reconnecting with the people in my life; last year I hardly spoke to any of my friends, I like to think of 2018 as a year of journeying alone to rediscover myself. But I have missed having people around so it feels good to finally be reconnecting to existing relationships and forging new ones.
  • Reading; we all know I love books but I don’t think I connected with my inner reader/writer last year and in the first two weeks of 2019. I am already excited for all the books on my reading list and the things I want to write about and share this year. I really hope this isn’t a new year buzz
  • Music; I am listening on repeat to RepJ 360’s new single on shining the light of God we have deposited in us. I believe it is a go way to start the year a reminder to be light in a world of shadows and Peace by Hillsong Young and Free, a reminder to stay still and know that God is always welcomed. I will include a playlist of what I am currently listening to.
  • Family; we are a nerdy group of people but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Our Sunday banter centres around debunking life philosophies and perfecting our home language of sarcasm
  • Not Driving; I believe Lagos has scared me when it comes to driving from horrible traffic to permanently aggressive drivers. So I am on a break from driving and my right leg is very grateful.
  • Work; I work with an exciting group of people who are always coming up with new ways to change what is to what it should be, I am excited for all the plans we have this year and looking forward to how they would pan out.
  • Co-Authors/ Creators for The OverThinker; I am learning I can’t run the website by myself so I have a few trusted friends joining me in developing this website, I am looking forward to working with them and all the things we would accomplish this year.
  • And Simple Worship is coming back in 2019.

Here is to a glorious 2019, to achieving our goals, breaking new ground and becoming better people.

Her Version of Events, Lifestyle, Reflections,

Finding Balance

I am sure you been wondering where Ore went. I will try to explain. This time, it isn’t a laundry list of excuses.

One of the things I hardly talk about on this blog is the fact that I am an Accountant. Yes, I am one of those people that must write their name as “Abidoye Aramide Oreoluwa ACA”, but I don’t see myself in this light.

As a practicing accountant, I live breath and sleep in spreadsheets; prepare daily reports, weekly reports and monthly reports.

I am sure you want to know how I get through endless hours of staring at spread sheets every day. Well, I listen to “The Moth Podcast(shout out to Mr. Johnson for recommending it). I just let a part of my brain inhabit the stories shared on the podcast and that gets me through doing the spreadsheets. Finance and Accounts is time consuming, requiring a quiet space for work to be done properly. This doesn’t happen when you work out of an open office that has people barging in every other minute to follow up on payments and requisitions, so I hardly get to work on my reports in the office. I take most of my work home and this eats into my personal reading and writing time, hence, the lack of inspirational posts from Ore.

I however managed to read some books this year. These books were my little escape pods from work: “What happens when a man falls from the sky”, “An Abundance of Scorpions”, “Under the Udala Tree”, “Pressure Cooker”, “It Wasn’t Exactly Love”, “Chasing Butterflies”, “Lean In”, “Known and Strange”, “Open City”, “The Sun and its Flowers”, “A Handful of Dust” & “June 12: 1993 Annulment”, ”This Modern Love”, ”The Bead Collector”.

The lack of work-life balance in the last few months inevitably led to me becoming unhappy and snappy. I knew something had to change but was at a loss on how to change it. I am still in the process of making the said changes, so suggestions on how to find a balance are welcome in the comments section below.

Here is what I have done so far pending when I eventually figure out what to do; I spend more time at work three days every week. Everything generally dies down at the office at about 5pm, so I put in two to three hours working on spread sheets and listening to ‘The Moth’. This makes me exhausted when I get home, but it guarantees I have my weekends free.

I have realized that I will soon have to make the decision of either sticking to corporate life, and its accompanying politics which I hate, or becoming a full time creative, because with each passing day I am discovering spaces I can fit into in the creative world. (Suggestions on how to break the news to Mr. Abidoye are welcome)

I don’t regret or disregard my experience in the last few months. I had various conversations with a few of my friends. [Side note: I have great friends. Now, back to the conversation]. They introduced new perspectives at my most exhausted times; that no experience is lost, and it is important to look beyond my exhaustion and see the lessons to be learned and focus on why God has placed me in this place.

Looking out for the lessons has brought a lot of my shortcomings to light. Instead of looking at work and its accompanying irritations as distasteful, I see the opportunity to grow Oreoluwa into a better person. For starters, I have learnt never to stretch myself too thin, to know my limits and stick with them, because within them I have the best outcome.

Quitting has crossed my mind several times, but I realize that when the time is right to leave, I will know and be ready to take the plunge.

Please let me know in the comments what your strategy for work-life balance is and how you cope with stressful situations.


The Over Thinker has several things brewing and it makes me excited for the coming months.



Adventure, Lifestyle, Music Review,

Johnny’s Room Live – A New Precedent

An event that was supposed to be for 150 people in a room, ended up being an event for 3000+ people in a park. If there are any doubts about the success of Johnny’s Room [turned Johnny’s Park], that small detail should lay that to rest. But of course there isn’t any one disputing [I hope].Johnny’s Room Live was not just a success in the fact that it was able to sell out 6 times over, but it was a success in that it set a huge precedent for the kind of music that we consider commercially viable in the Nigerian industry. It was able to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that the market for alternative music exists in Nigeria. When you hear people in their thousands singing at the top of their lungs to Kelly Clarkson’s “Breakaway” or Coldplay’s “Fix You” you know there is an untapped market. My hope is that this event, beyond setting precedent, would cause many other Nigerian artistes and musicians to explore the vast arrays of sounds and expressions outside of the status quo that many are content with.

Although the event started 30 minutes after it’s stated 7 o’clock start time, and finished well after its 9 o’clock end time, it was very enjoyable. We can chuck the poor time management to the fact that there were still queues of people trying to get in even after it eventually started. It was clear that they were not expecting such scores of people, because the glow bands that they used as entry receipts finished before 7 o’clock.

The sound engineering by Showgear was very well done, as always – the band sounded great. You could tell they were really enjoying their sound when David Rhino came forward to shred during their first set. I’m a believer of standing gigs, so whether it was an intentional choice or a result of short time to re-plan I count it as a plus that a majority of us were standing. It kept the energy levels high even at the slower tempo songs. It wasn’t until Johnny went into this long-winded story that people started looking for respite for their feet. A monologue that I felt was necessary as a lot of things needed to be said at such a historic event.
The surprise appearances of Tijan, Ric Hassani, Forever, Kenny Blac and, of course, Simi were all very electrifying with people running from the back to watch Simi perform on stage.

I think the success of the event, and the reason there were so many people in attendance, was largely because of the rhetoric surrounding it. The event was not marketed as just a concert it was (whether intentionally or not) marketed with the earnest humility that Johnny is known for, a humility that his many social media followers have been able to identify and appreciate. So they weren’t simply there to listen to “Good music” (which, there is no debate, was present), but they were there as a sort of confirmation, saying that humility, a clean message, strong values can also be celebrated.