Three months ago, I reviewed Koki Oyuke’s book; ‘Chosen not cheated’. Before I published the review, I reached out to her on Instagram and we ended up chatting for a bit: I asked her if I could interview her for the blog and she agreed. I really enjoyed reading her book especially since I was at a point in my life when I was learning and praying about purpose. I had always thought that purpose was a destination – but I am learning that it is actually a journey that I need to live out daily. Reading Koki’s book was such a revelation for me, every chapter I read confirmed that my purpose is my life and so everyday matters and everyday counts. Like her book, her answers were powerful; and a sober reminder of the place that God ought to occupy in our lives.
Whenever I am feeling down and second guessing myself, I cause myself to ‘imagine what God thinks of you, how He sees you, He trusted you enough to give you this that and the third, now do your part’. My prayer is that when you finish reading this post – you give God His rightful place in your life, appreciating yourself more and living out your purpose – everyday matters!
What does it mean to be chosen?
It’s an extension of God’s process of creation. If He made you, He’s already chosen you. Period! You don’t have to do anything to get picked and that’s, quite frankly, very humbling. That’s what being chosen by God means. It’s being here, having this one precious life and hopefully living all the dreams God pocketed into your heart and weaved into the fabric of your being.
What is purpose to you? And has this changed in the course of you writing your book?
I like to personalize purpose because it’s not like a uniform we can all slide into. It’s specific. With that said, I believe my purpose is God’s idea (intention) and definition of me. It has to begin and end with Him. What was He thinking when He made me? What thoughts does He think concerning me? You know, like Psalms 40:5 or Psalm 139:17 allude to. That’s purpose.
“Many, O Lord my God, are the wonders you have done. The things you planned for us no-one can recount to you; were I to speak and tell of them, they would be too many to declare”. (Psalm 40:5)
“How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them”. (Psalm 139:17)
It hasn’t changed since writing the book. It’s become crystal clear. Lately, I find myself turning toward where I feel God’s delight for me in terms of my creative expression. And I’m bursting electric creating a fresh list of dreams for God to breathe into, dreams He Himself sired and planted in me.
What is the one thing you struggled with when writing the book and how did you overcome it?
Oh, I struggled with so much fear! I remember fearing no one would buy my book. So I’d constantly pray and tell God, “You know, you’re the One who said great things about this book. And I know it took me some time but I’m doing it. I’m actually doing it! Please don’t set me up for failure.” It’s funny in retrospect, because God doesn’t have a negative fibre in His being, but fear makes us talk funny.
I once went into this fear monologue (something I did almost every night) and I said to my husband, “Please, be honest with me. You and Mary (my book editor and good friend) are not lying to me about my book saying that it’s good because you’re married to me or for her, because we’re friends, right? Like it’s actually good?” He rebuked me (in love, but boy did it slap) mostly because he was tired of these fear trips I invited him to. That set me straight, actually. If I was putting the book out in the world, I had to believe it was good and stop second guessing myself.
I cut fear at the neck and believed the book was as needed as it sounded when it was born as an idea in my heart back in 2013.
One thing you want people to get from reading your book
I just want to shred every ounce of every lie that stalks us telling us, “Not you – someone else maybe, try harder, and all the variations it wears”. The book is a clarion call to let go of every lie that calls us a fraud when we try to pursue the dreams pulsing in our hearts.
And I can guarantee you, you won’t be the same after you finish the book. Honestly, if nothing else changes, how you think of yourself, and God, and life, will shift.
From your experience, what would you tell someone who knows that God has called them to do something great but things just do not seem to be working out?
I’d say don’t quit just when things are getting interesting. Obstacles are meant to supersize our dreams. That’s why there’s a Red Sea to cross, a Goliath to conquer or a battle to win with only 318 soldiers. It’s how it’s supposed to be. If it’s God inspired, it’s God led. And we need to stop running from battles. Who part the Red Sea? Who showed David the weakness of Goliath and inspired him to use the soft stones? Who told Gideon to trim his army from thousands to 318 men to go into a battle where the enemies basically just killed themselves? God did!
Sometimes, what we think is a persistent challenge is a test to reveal whether you actually believe what God said. Are you resilient enough, or like Hebrews 10:38 says, will you shrink back because it got hot?
We just need to bring God into the equation. Train your eyes to see opportunity when you encounter challenges.
In my case, for example, I had a design business idea, pitched it to designer friends who didn’t buy it so, out of frustration, I taught myself how to design and ended up keeping all the profits of that business to myself. Also, those design skills came in handy when doing the book.
Train your eyes to see opportunity whenever you encounter challenges and you will turn every wall into a door.
Remember, we are not perfect, but we serve a perfect God who created us in His image and His likeness. Purpose is a journey, it is a process, and with it comes the fears, the doubt, the excitement – despite all this, do your part! Trust Him enough to believe that He chose you and you are worthy.
“So God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” Genesis 1:27
Thank you for reading!