Today, I will be sharing on “Driven by Vision”. And relate it to my reading story to every one of us in our quest to build a better future through reading.
I was not privileged to be around people that challenged me to read. As a matter of fact, I was the brightest among my friends. There was nothing new to learn, always having fun and playing around town.

My father had a plan for me to take Common Entrance in Primary Five (5), which I did. I took the First School Leaving Examination while in Primary Five(5), I went straight to Junior Secondary School One (JSS 1) in a boarding school. Things got worst. The friends I made NEVER believed in reading, they believed they will definitely pass their examinations.  My group of friends were people in primary school. As years went by, nothing changed.

On the other hand, I did not know how to engage in examination malpractice. I knew my only option was to read, but I could not sit down to read. I struggled to pass examinations throughout my Secondary School days. When it was time to write O’level examination, I sought for a Special Centre where I could make good grades because I knew I could not  do well on my own. Ironically, when it was time for the examination, I noticed I could not be part of the examination malpractice, and I did not know what to write. As expected, I came out with low grade parallel. I tried again the second year, the grades were still poor;and the same happened for the third time. At this time, some of my friends had gained admission into the higher institution, and I was the only one left behind. I tried again for the fourth, fifth and sixth times, the results were seized.

I know by this time, someone should be thinking it’s a spiritual problem. Right? The devil do not deserve most of the attention we give him, he does not have such ability. It wasn’t a spiritual problem, it was a matter of not doing what I should have done.It was then I told myself  that it was time to have a vision for your life, and place priorities right. Enough of this examination for now, and face your fears to conquer it.

Fortunately, my change started when I met a friend – Mr. Richardson.  Richardson just came into Port-Harcourt in search of job. His friend had invited him to Port Harcourt, and his friend attends the same church with me.Before I met Richardson, I knew already that I won’t go to school just to be employed, rather to employ others. That has been my mindset.I always had the vision of employing others. So, I wrote down my life vision. Whenever I looked at it, something tells me that the four walls of the University cannot grant me the knowledge to bringing  this vision into reality.My vision in life drove me to search for knowledge, but the problem now is the discipline to sit down and read. But the good thing is that prior to this time, I was always depositing into my EBA (Emotional Bank Account) by always imagining myself becoming a voracious reader, always admiring readers, always watching intelligent people, and always buying books even though I could not read them.So I think I had enough emotional ability to push whenever I start.

lots-of-booksRichardson is a gentle man, a Christian, voracious reader that has a rich library both hard and soft copies. Prior to meeting Richardson, I was planning of organizing a free computer acquisition program for my church. I met my friends that are computer literate, shared the idea with them. They all accepted to support in organizing  the program and also teach.One afternoon when we were having our final facilitators’ meeting, Richardson came to church, I never knew our voices were loud.And after the meeting, he noticed I was the one coordinating the meeting. So he called me and was sharing some ideas he had as he was listening to us which will also make the training an excellent one. That particular act got me interested in listening to him.When he was done sharing the ideas, he went straight to reading and how to develop yourself through reading. He shared his story with me, and encouraged me to develop a reading habit. I had no need of anyone to tell me this is the person I have been looking for. While discussing with him, he mentioned a quote he got from a movie (“The Ultimate Gift”), and also encouraged me to get the movie. The next day, he brought the movie for me, and so many e-books, and mp3 on “Reading” by Brian Tracy and other renowned speakers.

Friends, it’s not about what happened to you, it’s about the lessons you learned. Moreover, there are people that should not get close to you in the name of friendship. Also, if your vision in life does not drive you to do more, read more, and learn more, then, you need not to be told to have a rethink. There is a big problem. You didn’t just come to this earth to exist, you are on an assignment, and it’s time allotted.


FB_IMG_1485129669037Stephen Okorie is the President of Love House Initiative, and also a writer who has passion in developing reading culture amongst teens & youths.

He is  certified in Strategic Management from Macquarie Institute of Management, New Zealand.  He  shared this story on the 30th  of December,  2016 to a group of book lovers who interact daily on our Whatsapp group. My Reading Stories holds every Friday by 8pm.

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