If you’re looking into doing some introspection for self-improvement, more especially to better your life, there couldn’t have been a more authentic and fitting book as this one. “Awoken” is one book that will challenge you to look within yourself to identify that which may be hindering your progress, hindering living not only a fruitful and peaceful life but one that would be pleasing to our creator.
Each chapter focuses on character traits and bad habits we may possess, while also motivating us, through scripture, as to why it’s important to deal with them, and sharing the tools on how to do so. There are 14 of these character traits and habits mentioned in this book. Let’s look into a few so that we have a glimpse of what exactly is meant by “weeds” that we need to remove:
Starting with the first chapter titled “Getting it done”, the book emphasizes on all the bad habits that make us not “Get things done”. This includes lack of planning, procrastination, being afraid to fail and being with bad company. Oh yes, there are relationships that can hinder us from taking steps that would bring us closer to our destiny.
The chapter that follows, titled “Own race, own pace” deals with the character trait of competing and being jealous.
What I love in this chapter is how Athini reminds us to focus on ourselves, especially because one has their own God-given purpose that only they can excel in, doors specifically designed for that individual, work/assignment specifically for that one person. There is truly no need to compete.
“Power of words” is a chapter that focuses on the things we say with our mouth.
“The tongue can build or destroy.”
One example, that I’m sure most people are aware of but don’t pay attention to, is what comes out of parents’ mouths to their children and about their children. You’d be shocked at the effects, which linger right through to a child’s adulthood.
“Ignorance is bliss” reveals how many perish because of lack of knowledge and rejecting information about living a better life, which is all from God. We reject the very source of knowledge and information.
“I have learned that Christianity is not a religion but a relationship with God.”
“Glam and the glitter” is about arrogance. It shouldn’t be mistaken with being confident and unafraid. It’s a heart condition: thinking that you’re better than another because of title and possessions.
“Let go and let God” is about unforgiveness.
Unforgiveness causes us to be in prison while the other person has been set free. We are only hurting ourselves. This chapter also addresses our misconceptions about God’s view of forgiveness, like thinking that God understands and accepts when we don’t forgive. Self-forgiveness is also addressed and is just as important.
“The hand that gives” is about giving, not necessarily money alone.
“We are to bless others with any blessing or gift we have been given, which they lack.”
This chapter addresses when to give and when not to give, the issue of being conditional in our giving, and doing it for self-gain/ego. We may question, “where is this God” when we see people in need, but we seldom think that God actually helps through people, willing participants. The concept of “love as you love yourself” is so fitting to this topic. It will also make one see if they truly love themselves.
“Anger”, a title of one of the later chapters in the book, is one dangerous emotion. I say it is dangerous because you can imagine the damage caused when one is angry. In this chapter, Athini shares wisdom on what to do when angry, how to address anger, understanding those who are angry and how to practise self-control. Anger is not only expressed towards people but towards God as well, especially when we go through life and feel that God has forsaken us, yet He is the very source we need in tough times.
The chapter titled “Impatience” proves to us that there’s a reason why things don’t happen when we want them to, and the beauty of patience.
This line from the chapter “Unsatisfied” reveals how we may think all is perfectly well, perhaps because the bank account looks good, life is good, yet we may still find that something is missing. The flesh can be satisfied temporarily but the soul will need something greater, what only God can give to fill the void of dissatisfaction.
It may be that you don’t relate to all these character traits and bad habits, but whichever one you may discover within yourself, may this book enlighten you on how that habit may be hindering your progress, and motivate you to take action. Change demands action.
P.S: To get yourself a copy, you can purchase on Amazon online.