The first time I would drive through a city and spot my image on a billboard was in 2016. As a young minister, the feeling was different. It felt like an accomplishment. I even wanted to keep a picture of it.

The next time I would have such an experience was five years after. I got calls and messages from people residents in the city or wayfarers who knew me that they saw my image in the city.

But something happened: Months afterwards, I was back in the city where the protocol was amazing and hospitality was top-grade. I wanted to stop by a restaurant where local dishes were served and then I remembered that I had been on billboards. The pressure rose.

I reminded myself, “Temi, do not have a bloated image of yourself. Go and eat your amala in peace”.

One of the traps of “branding” is the pressure to keep up an appearance. You have to keep feeding the self-developed perception. If you brand excessively, you can lose touch eventually with who you are and the processes that should have shaped your character and helped your journey.

Is branding bad? Not at all! But when it begins to drive you to the extreme of pretence, make-believe, and ego, you need to deal with it. Take your steps in life with patience.

Have you noticed that if you have ever been on the radio or television, it almost seems as though everyone should know you? It is not true. Most of the pressure you are trying to live up to is self-imposed.

You must understand the seasons.

You must understand the reasons.

You must be guided by kingdom lessons.

You must not live your entire life building a pack of lies to defend another lie.

The process is still a part of life’s journey. Own the process. If the conference was not full, do not use images that only make it feel so. Own the process.

Can God be using you to kill the lion and the bear and you keep quiet about it until the day the testimony is needed? Or will you have huge pictures of the “lion-killer”? Can your heart preserve the move of God? Can you discern your quiet seasons and enjoy them?

Please build inner fortitude and values first. They will become your map when you want to derail.


temilOluwa Ola, Eruwa.

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