When I hear people pray ‘May God embarrass you with blessings’, I always scoff and think to myself ‘What does that even mean?‘.
Today, God revealed to me a blessing that I’ve literally made more of an embarrassment in my life. I graduated with a first class degree and received an award for the best project in the category of ‘Educational computing’. After my graduation day with some posts on IG and facebook, I never talked about it and I get very uncomfortable when people do so around me. When people ask me anything about it, I just go ‘It was God‘ and I attempt changing the topic immediately. In my mind, I was being modest, I was being humble, but God has just shown me that I was being like the older son in the prodigal son’s story who’s sin was even more grievous than the son who ran away and had just returned.
This post is an apology to God, but even more a restitution being made to anyone who God might have wanted to use this story to touch even earlier than now. What triggered it is a question you might be asking and here’s the answer; I saw a link on a friends whatsapp story, the title was ‘How to be an A student‘ with a couple of pictures of a young woman who had achieved that and was the valedictorian, first instinct was to click away but I couldn’t and I might just have heard God say ‘This is what I want“.
He was referring to using the comfort you have received to comfort others. In this case, showing other students the pathway to arriving at where I did. It might not be a big deal to some people, but it is to others and this post is for the others.
So here is my 5 top tips to being an A student.
Yes, God. If you thought you would see something else before this, I am so sorry but It was really my first step. I had the most responsibilities in University, I had several other commitments asides my books and somehow, God graced me with wisdom and direction on time management, divine understanding and favour before my lecturers and colleagues. My first encounter of God was ‘A God of Excellency‘. Everything about Him is excellent, even me that He created, so I saw anything less than excellent as under-performance, so i’ll always say it back to Him in prayer. I’d say “You’re a God of excellency, so I’m an excellent student“. The bible says God honours His word even above His name and so He took His words as I communicated to Him and He granted me grace to be just like Him, Excellent. Let’s not talk about how often my parents will call me a first class graduate, even before I entered final year, it was seed being sown.
2. See the vision
I cannot tell you how often I day dreamt of graduation day. In the vision, I saw and heard them announce my name as a first class student with a prize attached and exactly as I saw it every time, was how it happened. I even have proof in my journals from 2017 and 2018, I wrote in both journals that in 2019, I will graduate as a first class student and will receive a prize added to it, I didn’t write what prize exactly, but I just wanted an extra. Not to be proud or shame anyone, but because I know I am an excellent being created by an excellent God. Please, see the vision of your excellent result in anything as often as possible. I’m not even half way into my PhD journey but I already daydream of graduation day for it, and at first I was stopping myself but this morning when I fell into one of such visions, I said no! I’ll continue to envision it because as God said to Abraham “As far as you can see, I will give to you“. So see far and wide.
3. Be friends with your lecturers and colleagues
I can tell you for sure that this did more for me than my actual studying and i’m not joking. I was that student you can call ‘Sabi-sabi’ and I didn’t care what anyone thought about it. If I did not understand, I was going after the lecturer. If I found out someone in my class knew something I did not know, I chased them to be friends with them. Lecturers, beyond the marks, want to see a level of commitment, that their student is actually interested in whatever they were teaching. I dropped by at their offices to say hi when I was free, I went in for clarifications and questions and I left them emails at odd times in the day when I needed help and of course I was always at my lectures.
Majority, if not all my lecturers knew my name, it helped me further that I was the only female who finished with them right from first year on software engineering. You have to want something bad enough to the point you don’t care what anyone else thinks.
4. Teach what you want to know more of
I knew people far brighter than me that graduated with second classes and below, first class isn’t for the brightest, it is for the most committed. Even when I did not fully understand, I offered to teach and as I taught, I learnt more. When you want to grasp something, outside of the classroom be around people who know it more than you and also people who you know it more than, It will help you far more than you can imagine.
5. Study in the way that works best for you
I am a writer-reader, I find very few like myself, we grasp things the more we write them, so usually when people see me writing, they don’t know I’m actually reading. The down side of this is that it is extremely time consuming but if it is what works for you, you’ll have to make the time for it. Some people are faster readers and learners than me, what matters is understanding what works best for you and making sure you commit to sticking with the method. I have been a writer-reader since my first year in secondary school and I’ve kept at it till now only because I know it works for me.
The only place in my life I have had competition is in the area of my academics, and every time, once I identify it, I pray to God to help me kill it. You don’t have to compete with anyone but the you of yesterday. Don’t get focused on doing better than the other person to the point where you’ve done better but still not your best. Excellent is excellent, it has no rival or equal.
God gives us to make us channels. This first class hasn’t been a blessing to anyone but myself and that’s about to change. More students are acing school from hearing my testimony and committing more to their academics when they see the fruits it produces.
I pray God anoints you reading this with an anointing of excellence, that in all you do, all people see is excellence. In Jesus name, amen.