“Isuggest that the only books that influence us are those for which we are ready, and which have gone a little further down our particular path than we have gone ourselves.” E. M. Forster. Published in 2015 by Dayspring Discipleship & Helps Ministry, Answering The Call is one of such books. The book opens up with a proclamation that life begins at 40 and with the realization that the writer is about to redefine success and leadership.
With eloquently written texts, Nadu Denloye uses her personal experience to unravel the secret to finding fulfillment in life. The author’s truth seeking mission exposes a level of vulnerability not many in her position would be comfortable to show.
Answering The Call is a leadership book that mixes real life scenarios involving the writer with faith based applicable approaches to define the subject and its purpose.
Without delay, the book goes straight to the heart of the matter with the use of powerful narratives, quotes and imagery to complement the author’s words. She describes turning 40 as a huge defining moment in her life, a life that up until then had been ‘seemingly successful’ as a PhD holder at 25, co-founder of a leading IT company, a wife and mother to three beautiful children.
Looking back, Nadu considers her successes up until then as ‘superficial’. This change, we later find out is as a result of an awakening within her which led to the understanding that despite having made successful transitions in life – school, career, marriage, children – her choices didn’t have a deeper sense of purpose.
In a way of explaining herself, Nadu says that until one truly knows one’s self, strengths and weaknesses, know what one wants to do and why, then one cannot succeed in any but the most superficial sense.
From this point, Nadu proceeds to present her case to the reader with clear biblical backing to prove that self-discovery only comes when one knows his/her role in God’s grand plan and above all, that role makes one a leader.
She uses apt illustrations from notable intellectuals as well as from the bible to prove God’s existence and his purpose for our life. We also begin to understand that the call is a life of leadership, not as the world sees it but as God designed it.
Answering the Call is divided into three parts. The first part dwells a lot on the author’s awareness of God’s existence but by part two, Nadu actually breaks down how she finally answered all the questions she had of herself and the steps she began to take towards changing her life. Here, we learn about her resigning from the top position in her company and begin to understand more about what it takes to be a leader. She shares more about her life and the choices she has made from the reasons she studied electronic engineering, stayed back to do a PhD to how and why she eventually began her own company.
Though plagued with several insecurities, Nadu shows how hard work and dedication finally helped put those fears to rest. Without intending to, the book serves as an autobiography of some sort and Nadu concludes that though she made certain decisions without a clear understanding of the big picture, God must have guided her through all of them.
The book gets quite technical at various points as the writer uses graphs and models to explain her points; however, one quickly gets lost again in the narrative as she wields her personal stories to draw in the reader.
By the third part, Nadu is completely honest with the fact that before the awakening she experienced, she considered herself knowledgeable sometimes over everyone else. This she now sees as foolishness and though she had made some ‘good’ choices, her biggest fault was making them without guidance and understanding.
She then continues to write more about the steps she took in a bid to change the way she lived her life and be more self –aware. Some of these included exercising more as a healthy body is important for the mind to flourish, keeping a personal journal and making a commitment to learn more about things she did not know.
As the book comes to an end in its 110th page before proceeding to references, the reader is left with the desire to examine his/her own life’s choices with a deeper sense of understanding.