Category Archives: Bible Study

OVERCOMING TEMPTATIONS

All Christians fight the daily battle against temptations. No man or woman is exempted from this fight. It is one of the battles we must fight and win every day in the war against the arc-enemy (satan). It is of little importance whether you are a pastor or usher in church, you must fight your own battle. Nobody is above being tempted. Some preachers/teachers misleadingly tell their congregations otherwise. No matter your level or years in the Christian Faith, you must war against temptations. In Matthew’s rendition of the Gospel, he tells us that Jesus Himself was “led” up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil. So, if Jesus faced it, we all sure will.

According to the Oxford Pocket English Dictionary, temptation is an incitement to do what is wrong or forbidden.

The truth is that temptations should not seem strange to the believer. In fact, here in the Kingdom, if you stay without temptations, you are not a Christian! This is because, for one, our model (Jesus Christ) was tempted; and if we (as Christians) are Christ-like, we should expect temptings. Temptation, therefore, is not sin. Yielding to it, however, is.

By now, you already know (either by personal experience or by gained knowledge) that fighting—and winning—each of these battles is not easy. Some people win these battles daily. Others are not consistent with the wins. However, and saddening so, much more are still struggling for a single win.

WHY YOU SHOULD WIN THESE BATTLES
There is a lot of gain in overcoming temptations. Here are just a few of them:
1. It reveals God’s Grace and Mercy that abounds towards you (1Cor. 10:13).
2. It is a pointer to an incoming blessing and prize (James 1:12).
3. It grows your faith—and since we are talking battle here, it increases your rank—thereby qualifying you for greater prizes after greater battles (Lk. 16:10).
4. It gives you the qualification to help and encourage others in their own times of temptings.
5. Etc

HOW THEN DO YOU WIN?
The Bible gives three war strategies. These I want to call the WPS Formula. Unlike in the battles fought with guns and grenades, you use these strategies on yourself instead of the enemy:

1. WATCH
Peter warns that the believer must be “vigilant” should he overcome in this battle (1Peter 5:8). How do you watch? By folding your arms and praying for grace? No. You watch deliberately. Most Christians wrongly pray the prayer for grace. God does not do this for you. He gives you the strength, yes, but He allows you do this yourself. It is crazy to walk wilfully into places, people, and events that promote sin. Do not do it! Do not play with sin; it is as dangerous as a snake. You must deliberately make the decision to leave that dirty job, desist from visiting that member of the opposite sex at odd hours, or end that sinful relationship with a friend. The place of watching is a place of deliberate decisions. God did not make Joseph disappear when he stood before Potiphar’s wife; Joseph had to run with his legs (Gen. 39:12)! Daniel decided himself. Nobody pushed him to request for vegetables instead of the king’s meat, neither did anybody take him to the chief of the eunuchs; he went himself (Dan. 1:8). Until you make deliberate decisions to “flee these things” (1Tim 6:11-12), you will continue to lose these battles.

2. PRAY
“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Jesus said this to His disciples in Mt. 26:41. Prayer empowers your spirit. It keeps you ‘willing’ always. An evangelist at my home church back in Northern Nigeria once told something. I tried it out, and was pleased that it worked. He advised me to pray, immediately I noticed a tempting thought in my head. He said prayers could kill these thoughts before they grew into actions. He was right! Scriptures say every knee bows at the Name of Jesus (Phil. 2:10). Prayer shows your inability to help yourself. It puts you at the mercy of God. Understand that we fight not against humans, but against spiritual forces. You need a mighty hand at work in you, if you must win. You need somebody bigger. You need God—so you need prayers. Moreover, He has said, “Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.” (Jer. 33:3)

3. STUDY
The Psalmist wrote, “Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.”(Ps. 119:11). God’s word empowers you for the battle. These powerful guidelines keep you informed of what the enemy’s tactics are, and how you can overcome them. Even Jesus used what was written [in scriptures] against the devil. In chapter number four of Matthew’s account of the Gospel, He (Jesus) always said, “It is written”. Hear the rendition of Ps. 119:165 from the Amplified Bible: “Great peace have they who love Your law; nothing shall offend them or make them stumble.” The Scriptures have life in them (Jn. 6:63). Feed on God’s word, if you need your spirit to come alive. The mind is the centre of any man. To change a man, you have to change his mind first. And, concerning the mind, hear Paul: “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5). Your study gives you the tips for overcoming this battle (2Tim. 2:15). You must learn new strategies often. You need to renew your mind (Rom. 12:2; Eph. 4:23) via the word of God. Take out time everyday deliberately to study the word of God.

God is your strength. To win in this series of battles, you will definitely need Him. I pray for you, to receive the enablement to commit to these three things, in JESUS MIGHTY NAME! Amen.

See you at the place called ‘THERE’.

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Fruits & Gifts

“A man’s gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.”
-Proverbs 18:16

“Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.”
-Matthew 7:20

Always, and automatically too, the world shifts its focus onto something new. People, places, events—anything—that comes up on the news. Of course, they even call it ‘the NEWs’. By now, it is already a known fact that if you want attention, you’ll have to come up with something new and helpful—something that meets a need! So, as long as you keep solving the problems of others, people will keep coming to you.

To enable us be in that number (Solution Providers), God gave us skills (gifts). Every man has got his and every woman has got hers. Some, however, develop theirs, and then it makes them more sought than others.

Interestingly, this happening also exists in the body of Christ. According to the Bible, and in 1Cor. 12:7, “the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man” for the profit of the church. That alone informs us that as long as one is a child of God, and Spirit-filled, he/she carries one [or more] special gift from the Holy Spirit. 1Cor. 12:8-10 gives a list of some of these gifts. Everyone cannot have every gift. Your gifts are different from mine (1Cor. 7:7). However, all is given—in different measures—by the Holy Spirit (Rom. 12:6; Eph. 4:7).

As expected, some Christians, with the help of the Spirit, nurture and grow their gifts. For these believers, the impact is greater and the coverage wider.

Spiritual gifts are wow! With them, a believer can edify the saints and build the church. Spiritual fruits, however, are better! They make you more like Christ, thus preparing you for Heaven. And of course, every Christian knows that Heaven is the ultimate goal.

But in our Christian world of today, many seem to be obsessed with spiritual gifts. They work so much to build them up, that they forget about building up fruits. Listen, your walk with God is MORE important than your work for Him! Who you are—not what you do—is what qualifies you for Heaven. And you get to know more of who you are, and how to become better, when you sit by the Master’s feet to be taught by Him. Jesus Himself pointed this out when He spoke of Mary to Martha:

But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.
-Luke 10:42

Most ministers today, like Martha, are “cumbered about much serving” that they forget that thing which is “needful”. Most prophets today are more concerned about standing up to speak over someone’s life than they are about sitting down (like Mary) and have Jesus speak to their lives. Most teachers spend lots of time to prepare sermons, trying to force change into the minds of their listeners. A very tiny fraction of teachers, however, regularly study the Bible for themselves.

Everybody in our world wants to reach the others with their gifts; nobody is concerned about growing fruits from a renewed mind. Yearly in Nigeria, the number of new devotionals that hit the market increases. Yet, no fruits. Almost everyone is too busy changing others that they forget to see the BIG change they lack and really need.

Whatever the gift is—speaking, counselling, writing, singing, blogging, prophesying or teaching—more value is supposed to be placed on fruits. While both are important, fruits should appeal more to a real Christian. Hear Paul:

“But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”
-1 Corinthians 9:27

It is possible to prophesy, “cast out devils”, and do “many wonderful works” in the Name of Jesus, and yet miss Heaven (Mt. 7:22-23). Most healers and preachers of our time will miss Heaven; not because they ministered with charms, but because they have no fruits. Jesus, seeing the importance of fruits over gifts, advised that the way to discern the fake from the original is “by their fruits” (Mt. 7:15-16, 20).

Our churches of today place emphasis on only one gift of the Holy Spirit: tongue-speaking. People forget that the Holy Spirit also gives boldness to speak the word of God (Acts 4:31). Now, we want to ask ourselves: are there two Holy Spirits? No! Just one. And He is a Spirit “of power, and of love, and of a sound mind” (2Tim. 1:7). Why do people see the “power” in that text, and not the “love”? Whatever happened to “a sound mind”? Do you know that the same power that made you a tongue-speaking Christian also made you a witnessing Christian?

THEREFORE…
Heal all the sick and raise all the dead. But for as long as you remain scared, negligent or tired of preaching the undiluted GOSPEL of Christ with boldness, there’s very little you can amount to in God’s Kingdom.

Speak in tongues and prophesy. But remember that you are just an empty noise maker, if you have not love (1Cor. 13:1-2).

Go ahead and display your gift of the word of knowledge and of wisdom. Teach on. Preach on. Keep giving pieces of advice here and there, and keep writing (like myself). However, we only deceive ourselves, if we do not possess faith, patience or self-control.

A wise man once said, “What you do speaks so loudly I can’t hear what you say”. How could one be more concerned about the spiritual welfare of others that they lose interest in theirs? While we go about ministering our gifts to the others, let’s remember that “the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are His” (2Tim. 2:19). Therefore,”let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall” (1Cor. 10:12).

In this journey of ours, gifts are important, but fruits are indispensable!

I wish you all same testimony in 2Tim. 4:7-8!

God bless.

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JESUS IS ALIVE; AND HE IS STILL PROVING IT!!

…but do you believe that?

There are such times when we doubt the truth that Christ ever existed. Times when what we’ve been told by our pastors suddenly lose their meanings. At these times, prayer becomes the last thing on our minds—that’s if it’s there in the first place. Sometimes, when caught in this trying and tricky situation, we are tempted to: complain, become offended, doubt, and blaspheme.

In this season of the remembrance of Christ victory over satan and death, I want to remind you of the same truth: Jesus STILL lives. And not just that; HE LIVES IN YOU! Truth is, He knew you were going to doubt His love for you one day. Better truth is, He went on to love you anyway.

Knowing what He was going to pass through just to prove this love, He almost prayed against it. He didn’t just go through all of that for nothing. He always saw one more reason why He had to die—you had to live!

Jesus so loves you that even after He died—and seized power for you—He arose to make sure that you see Him ALIVE (Luke 24:15, 31, 36)! He didn’t just stop there. He showed you his hands and feet (Luke 24:40). Yet, you did not believe (Luke 24:41). Then He had to dine with you (Luke 24:42-43). He even had to help your understanding (Luke 24:45).

He knew that one day you would question His existence. He knew that someday you would disbelieve Him. Then He gave you the Bible, so you could read for yourself all the facts therein (2Tim. 3:16; Heb.4:12). This Word carries the therapies for your growth, healing and inspiration.

He also thought that you would need help with the Testaments. So He sent you The Comforter—His Presence (Jn. 14:16). The Holy Spirit powers God’s Word in us. He reminds us of the promises in the Bible and of Jesus’ love for us (Jn. 14:26; 15:26).

Then He gave His Blood, that through it, you should be saved and spared (Heb. 12:24; 1Peter 1:18-19). By this Blood, your sins were paid for (Mt. 26:28). Destruction skips you, because of the stains of this Blood (Ex. 12:13). Your biggest enemy, the devil, is defeated by this Blood (Rev. 12:11).

Wait a minute! He even gave you His Name. The name JESUS—that comes with His Power—was given to you the day you believed. Armed with this weapon of a name, you could command mountains to move, instruct ailments to pack up and leave, and even stop death—you could do and undo! Equipped with this code of a name, you could also access Heaven, the Throne of GOD, to seek forgiveness and to give thanks. (Mt. 28:18; Acts 3:6-8; Phil. 2:9-11)

Finally, to keep assuring you of His continued existence, He gave you Christians—other people like Him! These precious beings—your pastor, your leaders, your mentors, your parents, or those ordinary people living extraordinary lives—are around you. He is alive in them. And every time you see them, you see Him same way—alive!

As we celebrate the resurrection of Christ, I want you to be reminded again, beyond your mere obligation or desire to celebrate Easter, that HE TRULY LIVES…and IN YOU too. Deliberately remind yourself always of all He went through to prove His existence to you.

I, Uncle P celebrate the Christ in you.
Happy Easter Celebrations, and GOD BLESS YOU.

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The Messenger

“Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so send I you.”
– John 20:21

Pastors, teachers, prophets, healers, evangelists… We are all sent for one purpose. And that is the Father’s. We should have the consciousness of the fact that we live as messengers of God. Every child of God has been called into the assignment (Mk 16:15). The Christian call is not one of luxury. We are not picnickers; we are messengers! There’s no lodging for us (of course, we run a race). We have not been called to rest; we’ve been called to work.

Every Christian is a worker in this field. It is what identifies you as a Jesus Team member.

WHAT MUST MESSENGERS DO?
As messengers of the Lord, we have a part to play in annoucing the Kingdom of our God and its King, Jesus Christ.
Enjoy:

1. Know the message
There’s no messenger without a message. Since the work of a messenger is to send messages, he’s gotta know what he’s sending across. Paul, speaking to Timothy, in 2Tim. 2:15 advises that our knowlegde of the message guarantees our approval as messengers. Delivering the message makes you a messenger. But knowing the message makes delivering it possible.

2. Deliver the message
What defines a messenger is the delivery of the message. Anyone can have information; but it takes a messenger to pass it on. Listen to Acts 4:20: “For we must tell what we have seen and heard” (New Life Bible). The annointing is for this purpose as well (Luke 4:18). Christ was sent for this purpose (Luke 4:43), and according to our anchor text, we’ve been sent by Him as well. Notice the priority placed by my Master (Jesus) on His Gospel in these texts:
Mk. 1:38; Lk. 9:2; Lk. 9:60.

3. Live the message
It makes it authentic! No matter the Bible translation you read, you’ll notice that the deeds of Jesus came before His words in Acts 1:1. We’ve been called to live out our message because it also speaks of God to men as well, or maybe even better (Mt. 5:16). In the workplace, at home, in school, everywhere…make Jesus SHOWN! It was Francis of Asisi that said, and I quote, “By all means preach the Gospel. And if necessary, use words“. It will be funny to so passionately advertise a product you don’t use. It is much more easier to teach from experience.

As we run this Christian race, pressing toward the mark for the price, let’s make sure we build the numeric size of runners participating in this lifetime event with us.

Further study:
Mt. 5:13-16; Acts 16:10; Rom. 1:15-17; Rom. 10:13-15; 1 Cor. 9:16-18; 1Tim. 4:15-16 and 2Tim. 4:2

It is my prayer that we all see the position into which we’ve been called, and work therein.
Have a blessed weekend, fellows.

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Why You Should Have More PSPs This New Year!

Yes. You deserve the very best this new year! And you’ve got to have this best more often, and as much as possible!

This is because you are a regular reader here!

Okay, that was a joke.

It is because you need it (or them).

You should have more PSPs, yes, and because you need them! YOU NEED MORE OF THEM!

PLENTY.

But why…?
Every new year comes with its new troubles. Every new season is equipped with its new challenges. And, of course, for some folks, every new year is a new opportunity to make new resolutions. Keeping to resolutions are actually part of the challenges (or, for others, troubles) of the new year.

However, there’s something people rarely plan to do every new year.

ENJOY!

It is NOT a crime to make plans for entertainment in the coming year. In fact, you should only plan to enjoy yourself every year!

So, here’s how to ENJOY 2015, by having more PSPs, and why too:

1. MORE PRAYERS
Most people probably don’t want to hear this. But I ask, what other way is there to better enjoy the year (any year) than conversing with divinity? Here in Nigeria, most people know this… But sadly, not all who know it, understand it.

In Nigeria (which, by God’s Grace, is one of the most religious nations in the world), people pray at the start of every year. But they do this in groups. As I write this blog post, thousands of churches and religious groups across Nigeria have already started their annual fast programme. This happens in January every year.

But…

Really, how many of us remember to pray again after this collective exercise? So, what I’m talking about here is not a coming together. I’m talking about raising and maintaining your own altar.
Read about this Champion:
“And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.” (Mark 1:35).

This truth will NEVER change: the spiritual realm creates and controls the physical. And here’s another truth which carries same unchanging power: you can NEVER grow bigger than your prayer life! People struggle with growth yearly, because they struggle with prayer yearly. Jesus knew that prayer commanded his results. See verse 34: “And he healed many that were sick of divers diseases, and cast out many devils; and suffered not the devils to speak, because they knew him.” So, for these works to continue, He refuelled daily.

To succeed everyday this year, you must pray everyday this year.

2. MORE STUDY
Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.
-1 Timothy 4:13

Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
-2 Timothy 2:15

“In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.”
-Daniel 9:2

“When you come, bring the coat I left with Carpus in the city of Troas. Bring the books and for sure do not forget the writings written on sheepskin.”
-2 Timothy 4:13

Can we…

…pay attention to study?

Ever heard of the saying: readers are leaders? Commit a reasonable amount of time to study for those projects this year. Carry out researches. Make findings. Grow your knowledge base. As a student, don’t you think it’s early enough to start studying? Wanna be something in the nearest future? Here’s ma question: how much of that thing do you know? Maybe it’s your dream to pursue medicine in the university. Then, it’s time you got prepared for it and stopped failing the science subjects in high school.

I understand that you have ambitions. You that have a gift, have you honed it yet? You enjoy public speaking, right? How many books have you read on the subject yet? Do you know that you can be taught by the world’s greatest minds: Albert Einstein, Mother Theresa, Benjamin Franklin, Theodore Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, John Maxwell, Billy Graham, Kenneth Hagin, Joyce Meyer, John Piper, Kenneth Copeland, Joel Osteen, Paula White, Bishop David Oyedepo, Pastor Enoch Adeboye and of course, me, Prince Godfrey… Haha!? All you need to do is purchase and read their books, subscribe to email updates from them, visit and follow their blogs, read their quotes, like their pages and suck out knowledge from them.

Christain, how often do you read your Bible? How much of God do you know? If His Word is the Sword of the Spirit (Eph. 6:17), how strong and sharp is your sword? Are you prepared for the battles this year has got in it?

Check those who soar; they are those who study!

3. MORE PRATICE
But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.
-James 1:22

For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.
-Romans 2:13

This year, as is the case every other year, thousands (if not millions) of resolutions will not be kept. Fact.

Change happens when we do. Not when we say we’ll do. Change itself is a ‘doing’ word, an action word.

Knowledge is not power; applied knowledge is! It is time you stopped deciding to change and just change! This part is not easy. But it is simple. God’s grace is available, and sufficient too.

The rewards of practice cannot be over-emphasized. Think about it. What if you put into practice all the truths from the books you have read? What if you did all the things instructed by the Bible? That life would definitely be glowing right now! Practice is the crown (glory) of learning (knowledge). Anyone who does not what he knows, the same is regarded as he who knows not! The only difference between those who know and those who don’t is seen in their actions. Actions are proofs of knowledge.

You need more PSPs this year. And here’s to having lots and lots of them.

From us @ Jikmatas,
|Happy, PSP-filled New Year|

The CHRIST We Celebrate

Happy CHRISTmas!

Happy CHRISTmas!

“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.”
– Luke 2:10-11

Really, why do we do what we do every 25th of December?

That question may not be on the minds of many now. Maybe that’s not even your priority, but just think about it. Ask yourself too: why do I celebrate on this day (December 25) anually?

Very few of us may get an honest and genuine answer. What about the others?

In a recent survey, as published in a post by Denison Forum, these words shocked me:

…most popular Christmas songs are not about Christ.  They celebrate sleigh bells, Santa Claus, and the larger folk American culture.

I have two thoughts in response.  First: it is possible—and even popular with many—to celebrate Christmas with no regard whatsoever for Jesus.  Eighty percent of non-Christians say they celebrate Christmas.  With all the glitz and glamour of the holidays, a Martian could be forgiven for wondering why we call it Christmas.  In a similar vein, only 42 percent of Americans think the meaning of Easter is the resurrection of Jesus.  We have clearly turned holy days into holidays.”

People celebrate CHRISTmas without seeing the CHRIST in it. People drink themselves to stupor on this day; young girls lose their virginity on this day; what about the killings and theft? You just need to visit the news after Christmas to confirm this truth.

Do you crucify Christ, instead of celebrate Him? I thought it’s His birthday? But we make it look like it’s a girlfriend’s rather…or a boyfriend’s. Should we be happy in Jesus(the celebrant) or in sin?

From our text today, the birth of Christ brings about “good tidings of great joy”. If there’s no joy after you are done celebrating CHRISTmas, check it, you definitely celebrated something else! Christ must be born in you, for that is real Christmas. All these find a common root in the reason for His birth in the first place.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him might be saved

-John 3:16-17

That’s why we celebrate.

You must, you should, celebrate, because “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord (Luke 2:11).

You celebrate, but you do it outside the party ground, if the One you celebrate is not your Saviour and Lord yet.

We Christians, most times, only celebrate the Person of Christ. Be it Easter, CHRISTmas, etc, we forget the purpose and just stick with the personality [of the year]. JESUS didn’t come for that award. He came for you! He came for your heart. What are you celebrating, his purpose or your sin?

So, what’s it gonna be? If it’s Christ’s birthday, where is your gift?

I think He only demands that you “sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear” (1 Peter 3:15). If you don’t want Him, then don’t celebrate Him! He knows you when you have Him, not when you celebrate Him. Lamenting the hypocrisy in our generation today, Jesus cried, “This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me” (Matthew 15:8).

Your salvation will be your best act of celebration this season. Come, Jesus awaits you.

From all of us @ Jikmatas, here is wishing you CHRIST, this CHRISTmas.

Waiting or Shaking?

“He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD.”
– Ps. 112:7

Am I really waiting on God?
Or is it because I have not seen another alternative to jump at yet? Waiting on God goes beyond my sitting at a place and expecting God to show up. It requires patience. It induces calm.

Why do I wait?

Waiting on God is not synonymous with having another option. It is never a plan to use God as an alternative. Some of us wait on God because we have not gotten any opportunity to go elsewhere! Waiting is waiting; it is not shaking!

Ps. 112:7 declares, “He shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD.” He who waits is not moved, if he waits on God.

Waiting on God requires that I do two things. My notice and application of these things not only justifies the authenticity of my waiting, but also guarantees my answer after the period of waiting. When next I wait on Him, I should make sure of these:

1. I AM NOT AFRAID OF BAD NEWS
When Scriptures say that “he shall not be afraid” of bad news, I’m not being told that “he shall not see (experience) bad things”. Instead, I’m being told that he shall be courageous through them. The Bible never gives a promise that informs me of the absence of challenges; but I can find many verses that promises me support when I go through them.

Psalm 91:7 encourages, “A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.” (Emphasis added). This verse was not written to scare me. Rather, it was written to strengthen me with a fore knowledge of what I should expect. If I have an idea of what I should expect, then I need not become afraid or even surprised when these expectations evolve into realities. But wait, there’s another good news! God doesn’t just stop there. As always, He adds an unfailing promise: “it shall not come nigh” me. That’s why I need not fear.

What happens when, even in waiting, things go from bad to worse? I don’t fear. From worse to terribly worse? I stay calm still! That what I’m being told here. If the tempest in waiting doesn’t sweep me off the Rock of Salvation (Jesus), then I’m waiting genuinely.

2. I TRUST GOD
That line, when said, is very easy. It is one thing to receive a promise. Trusting that promise is another thing entirely. Many Christians have full knowledge of the promises of God. Yet, they fall into the deep and dry pits of doubt and fear. Many of us preach what we hardly practise, and advice what we hardly acknowledge. This here, is the final test of the motive behind my waiting. God has promised, yes. But am I gonna trust Him? The second part of our key verse hints that “his heart is fixed, trusting in the LORD”. This is another level of waiting on God. This is actually the second and last level. When my heart becomes fixed on God, I share in a realm once enjoyed by apostle Paul when he declared, “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8: 37-39). It brings me to a position where I can boldly anounce to my opposition, “but if [my God will] not [deliver me], be it known unto thee…that I will not…worship the golden image which thou hast set up” (Dan. 3:18). I must come to a point where I can believe God not just because of what I need from Him.

When I [fearlessly] go through all these trials, I must trust God to:

  • Go through them with me;
  • Provide timely support along the way;
  • Bring me out safe, and soon.

I must check the motive behind my waiting. God treasures the sacrifices of “a broken and a contrite heart” (Ps. 51:17). Going many days without food won’t be the sacrifice I need to pay; doing it the right way will be.

In what ways have genuine waiting on God brought you peace, taught you patience, and sought you results? Share with us below.

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Falling, Yet Joyful!

“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
– James 1:2-4

It’s very crazy to say, “Congratulations!” to someone who’s going through a lot in life. You’d be termed wicked and heartless. You may even be accused of being the brain behind their problems. But our text here gives us a serious reason to believe that you wouldn’t be wrong if you said that to a Christian.

Patience in trying times is what makes us “perfect and entire, wanting nothing”. Growth in the Christian race ain’t possible outside experience. My experience, which James called “works” in 2:17 of his letter, is what gives life to my faith. Work means acting out my faith! If we, as Christians, must grow, we must get patience. And that virtue, my dear, is not honed in your comfort zone.

Be glad when you are tempted. Rejoice when you suffer setbacks and neglect despite your best efforts.

Share with me this post from Amazing Facts “dot” org:

AN AMAZING FACT: It’s hard to make heads or tails of the oyster. For starters, it has no head or tail. Yet in spite of the fact that it lacks a brain, the oyster has extremely acute chemical and tactile senses and other resources that enable it to survive even though it seems one of the most defenseless creatures in the sea. The oyster has a small heart that pumps colorless blood and a pair of kidneys. But it has no brain! It draws oxygen from the water through gills, similar to fish. The oyster “eats” by using an intricate pumping system coupled with a filtering system that sifts food from up to eight gallons of water per hour. Some oysters can even alternate their gender, male one year, female the next! And they can release over one million eggs in a season, but only a few of these eggs will likely survive to maturity. The oyster has a powerful central adductor muscle that can open or shut its shell very rapidly. It also has a “catch” inside that can keep the shell closed for a long time, apparently without getting tired. One of the most amazing achievements of an oyster is how it makes a pearl. This brainless wonder creates a perfectly formed iridescent jewel from an irritating grain of sand. Oysters evidently used to be much bigger. A few years ago geologists found some enormous fossilized oysters that measured up to 10 feet across and weighed 650 pounds. What’s even more amazing is where they were found—high in the Andes Mountains! About 500 gigantic fossilized oysters were discovered 13,000 feet above sea level in a province approximately 250 miles southeast of Lima, Peru. Can you imagine the pearl that might come from one of these monster oysters?

In describing the New Jerusalem,
John saw something fascinating that boggles our minds. “The twelve gates were twelve pearls: each individual gate was of one pearl” (Revelation 21:21). Notice, each gate was not made of thousands of pearls, but of “one” pearl. How could that be? There must be gigantic oysters in heaven! But perhaps there is a deeper message for us to learn. If pearls are made through “trials” that come into the oyster’s life, through little irritating bits of life that are made into something beautiful, then perhaps we too will enter the gates of heaven because we have persevered with the trials that have been our lot.

“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:
Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.”

– Matthew 13:45-46.

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Using Time

time should be invested

time should be invested

Everything eventually stops working at one point in time or another… Something, however, doesn’t.

TIME!!!

Time cannot be stopped. Any attempt to pause or stop time is an attempt to disrupt life. Why? A wise man once hinted that time is the stuff life is made of! So, yes. You’ll not be wrong if you rename this article, “Using Life”!

A lot, and enough too, has been said about the need for young fellows to be time conscious. With every second, ageing takes place. With every day, our graves draw closer (whether we want to hear it or not).

There are, however, three ways people use their time. [This was told me by my father.] These would be explained to us here:

1. SOME WASTE IT
Beholding young folks who live as though there is no other life beyond this is no more a surprising sight. Sometimes you see certain things done by these ‘leaders’ of tomorrow so-called, and you begin to wonder, “leaders over who/what exactly?” Some of the achievements of these fellows include (but is not limited to): laziness, fornication, drunkenness, idleness, drug addiction, arrogance, stupidity… Some of this youths actually become consciously unaware of the fact that the clock never stops ticking. Anything goes for them. You find them living their lives, but at the mercy of chance. Among these are thieves (armed or not), prostitutes, smokers, drug addicts, cultists, thugs, playboys/playgirls, etc. Never try to correct them, or you get mocked at (and that is if heaven says you shouldn’t get beaten up physically). When they finally realise what’s going on, it’s already late. They then turn out to become: drivers, janitors, housemaids, baby sitters, truck pushers, hawkers, cleaners, messengers, etc, having their lives totally dependent on others or events.
These ones only exist in life.

2. SOME SPEND IT
This set of folks go about their daily routine. Yes. That’s just about the only thing they know and do. They hunt after the ‘normal’ things of life. They come to a place and just join the race, without knowing what it is all about. This category of time-users do it the way others do it or think it should be done. Here’s their goals list:

  • go to school
  • read and pass exams
  • graduate
  • get a job
  • work your way up through the ranks
  • get married (for some, however, this comes before graduation)
  • get babies
  • train them

…and the cycle continues. Although they become doctors, engineers, tailors, mechanics, teachers, lawyers, bankers,etc, they have little to show for their sweat. For them, life is only what happens between when they wake up and when they go back to bed. Nothing new. Nothing adventurous. Nothing daring.
These ones only struggle with life.

3. SOME INVEST IT
“And of the children of Issachar, which were men that had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do; the heads of them were two hundred; and all their brethren were at their commandment.”
-1 Chronicles 12:32.

See that, people! They ruled because they understood time. Understanding time teaches you what you “ought to do”, not what you want to do. Now that, is INVESTMENT! Fulfilment comes when you do what you should, not what you could. The people in this category NEVER have a ‘free time’. They rest when it’s time for it; not just because they want to. These people turn out to be: professors, chancellors, SANs, medical directors, CEOs, business owners, employers of labour, etc. They command results, and have the people in the other two categories working their heads off to bring these results.
These ones don’t just live life; they thrive in it!

Currently, you are living your life in one of the categories listed above. I don’t know which exactly. But I think that’s your question to answer. Ensure you check to be sure.

Until we greet again, STAY GOD’s!!!

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The Prayer God Answers

The Prayer God answers

The Prayer God answers

2 Chronicles 7:14

If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
(New International Version)

Have you prayed? Have you fasted?
Did you request something from the
Lord? Are you tired of waiting on Him? Are the answers not showing up yet?

Then there’s a problem.

You!

God is EVER faithful. He never changes, not for any man or circumstance. We are our own problems! Sometimes, we pray wrongly.

God Himself did give King Solomon and his people the guidelines for praying to, or requesting from Him.

These tips we
shall look into briefly.
We must:

  1. BE HUMBLE: God ‘resists’ the proud, but grants grace to the humble.
    Grace takes us to where we are not
    qualified to enter. In the Old
    Testament, if someone sins, they are not allowed into the tabernacle
    (except for cleansing). But we know
    that Jesus’ death and resurrection
    brought grace which makes us come
    into God’s presence without guilt,
    having been washed by the Blood.

    If you are privileged to attend a
    gathering of highly influential people, you tend to be very careful, knowing that you are not worth the invitation. That’s how we should approach God. Every opportunity to meet with Him becomes a rare privilege. So it makes us very careful not to misuse it.
    The bible has this story of a tax collector and a pharisee who went to pray. God honoured the prayer of the tax collector because he knew, accepted and expressed how highly privileged he was to come into God’s presence.
    Whoever we are, whatever we have, or wherever we come from, should not be a hindrance to our worship. When entering the church hall, drop your ego and pride, your knowledge and etc; drop them outside. For even before
    you open your mouth to speak before God, He has seen your heart.

  2. PRAY: If it is truly what you have come to do, get on with it; don’t do anything less. Prayer is talking to God. It ain’t shouting out loud so your neighbour can be intimidated. It ain’t noticing who prays well and who doesn’t. Prayer is sure not sitting relaxed on a chair, sleeping. Prayer is talking to God. As we mean it, and even
    more, when talk to our earthly
    fathers, we must focus on why we
    close our eyes to say those words. We must TRULY PRAY.
  3. SEEK HIS FACE: We must focus on God. Our reason for asking from God should include a longing and desire for His will to be done. We must be very aware that we don’t own ourselves. So we must use that which is His to please
    Him. Seeking God’s face means: “let
    thy will be done”. It means, “give it to me ONLY IF you know it is right for me”. God has a say in anything we ask for- let us listen to Him.

    Another way we can view ourselves as ‘God- seekers’ is when we don’t just come to ask Him, but also to know Him. This particular kind of God-seekers are never discouraged. Because this kind of God-seeking takes care of the first.
    Here, you want more of God, not
    just what he gives. Here, you TALK ‘WITH’ GOD, not just talk to Him. Here, you learn how to, and what to ask from God. So your God never fails; if you don’t get it, you know why. Here, YOU ALWAYS WIN!

  4. CHANGE: Nothing around you will change if you don’t!
    Someone is wondering, “can God’s people be wicked?” Well, your guess matches mine! We have many of God’s people who still practice wickedness! How do we talk to others? What do we desire, and can do ‘anything’ to have? What have we not let go of yet? Why the hatred, malice and unforgiveness? Do you have greed or jealousy?
    If you have these things, then you don’t need answers!

    Resolve to become better each time you visit God’s presence. Maybe we are the reason we are not getting what we always ask for. Maybe we have this grudge that is occupying our heart. It’s time to let go. It’s time to fly light- that’s the only way we can fly high.

Can you say a prayer now?

Ask God to forgive your sins. With
humility, tell Him you are sorry. Tell
Him to make you a better person. Now, ask Him to ‘heal’ your land (business, academics, family, body, life).

#STAY IN TOUCH WITH GOD!#
God bless.

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