08. June 2017 · Comments Off on STOP HANGING AROUND THE EDGES · Categories: Change, Discipline, Endurance, Jesus Christ, Spiritual Growth

Some people are like seed along the path, where the word is sown. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the word that was sown in them. Others, like seed sown on rocky places, hear the word and at once receive it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word; but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful (Mark 4:15-19 NIV).

Beloved, I remember listening to a story of little Johnny who kept falling out of the bed every night. His mum would hear a bang on the floor followed by crying and would have to run to his room to rescue him. However, one night he said; “mummy I’m tired of falling from the bed. I’m aching all over. But then his mummy said the reason why you keep falling out of the bed is because you don’t get far in enough. Stop hanging around the edges.

Stop hanging around the edges…

Beloved, could the reason you keep going back to your old nature be because you’re not making any attempt to get far in.

Jesus talks about this parable where the farmer sows seed (the word of God) that falls on various grounds (the hearts of people that receive the word). The first group of people don’t even get anywhere because they just hang around the edges. As a result, Satan is quick to snatch away whatever they’ve heard. The other two groups try to get far in but keep turning and tossing around in the bed because of trouble, persecution, the worries of this life and worldly desires. Before you know it, they are on the floor and are crying for someone to pick them up. They are never productive. But there’s a final group that has decided that they are going to move far in; way past the things that could bring them down. That’s because they know that they are temporary. These ones… like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop—some thirty, some sixty, some a hundred times what was sown.” (Mark 4:20 NIV). You would find these ones resting in the corner, tucked right in… with Christ Jesus Himself as the chief cornerstone (Ephesians 2:20).

Beloved, are you still HANGING AROUND THE EDGES? A relationship with Christ is something that has to be experienced and unfortunately, the troubles, temptations or worries don’t go away. You’ve just got to climb pass them to rest at that Corner. You’ve got to… taste and see that the Lord is good (Psalm 34:8 NIV). You can’t taste by HANGING AROUND THE EDGES… Move in… Move in… Move in…

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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22. September 2016 · Comments Off on WAIT TILL HE IS DONE‏ · Categories: Endurance, God's Plan, Patience, Perseverance, Spiritual Growth, Trusting God

Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing (James 1:3‭-‬4 AMP).‬

Beloved, yesterday, the Lord used my mobile phone to show me a great illustration that demonstrated how we can sometimes be impatient and as a result, stop Him from completing the work He is doing in us during a particular season.

So, I’ve got two phones but unfortunately only one charger which means that I can only charge one phone at a time. Also, one of the phones takes forever to charge probably because I am not using the right charger, as a result, I always like to charge that one first because it’s also my main phone. So, what happened was that I had been charging it for a while and I needed to charge the other phone, so from time to time, I would check to see if it was fully charged so I could start charging the other phone but like I said, it was taken forever so I left it to continue charging.

However, after a while I reached out for the phone to check for something else but when I saw that it was 99% charged, I decided to take the charger off so I could charge the other phone but one mind said why not just allow it to be 100% charged up but I couldn’t wait. I just ignored it and that’s when I felt the Lord say “see how your impatience gets in the way of finishing the process I’m taking you through”.

Beloved, based on our recent conversations, I knew the Lord was speaking to me about patience and endurance. It was just 1% remaining but I couldn’t wait and it’s not like the other phone was about to die, I just like to see that it’s charged up. The other thing that caught my attention was that immediately I took the charger out of my almost charged phone, I had hardly done anything on it before it dropped down to 98% and it kept going down because the phone consumes battery.

Beloved, what’s the message here? Our key text advises us to be patient will the Lord works on us so we are perfect, completely developed and lacking in nothing ‎but many of us give up at that 99th hour and instead of being complete, we gradually start going backwards.

Beloved, waiting isn’t always fun but‎ the end result is worth. Job said… “But He knows the way that I take [and He pays attention to it]. When He has tried me, I will come forth as [refined] gold [pure and luminous] (Job 23:10 AMP). Job basically said the Lord hasn’t forgotten about me. He knows exactly where I am and what He is doing with me and once He is done, I would come out shining so I’ll just wait till He’s done.

SELAH!

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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01. September 2016 · Comments Off on STRENGTH FOR THE LAST LAP‏‏ · Categories: Endurance, Jesus Christ, Perseverance

God strengthens the weary and gives vitality to those worn down by age and care. Young people will get tired; strapping young men will stumble and fall. But those who trust in the Eternal One will regain their strength. They will soar on wings as eagles. They will run—never winded, never weary. They will walk—never tired, never faint (Isaiah 40:29-31 Voice).

Beloved, I remember watching the movie “The Life of Pi”; a story of a young boy who was travelling with his parents from India to Canada by sea but unfortunately experienced a shipwreck. With parents dead, he survives 227 days after the shipwreck while stranded on a lifeboat in the Pacific Ocean with a tiger.

He struggled to make it to the end after devising a strategy to ensure the tiger didn’t have him for dinner while he himself was starving. However, with the end in sight, he made this profound statement… “By the time we reached the Mexican shore, I was afraid to let go of the boat. My strength was gone. I was so weak. I was afraid that in two feet of water, so close to deliverance, I would drown…”

Hmmm… the water was shallow. Only two feet… that was the safest part of his journey but his strength almost failed him. I had previously listened to a preaching on the topic but watching the full movie actually drove the message home. The toughest times in life are not at the beginning of the fight. Then you’ve still got energy. However, when you’ve been in an intense battle for too long, your strength starts to fail you.

After been hit one blow after another, if not careful, you begin to give in to the little things. The great prophet Elijah ran away from a lady after the great battles he had won… Elijah was afraid and ran for his life… He came to a broom bush, sat down under it AND PRAYED THAT HE MIGHT DIE. “I HAVE HAD ENOUGH, LORD,” HE SAID. “TAKE MY LIFE; I am no better than my ancestors.” (1 Kings 19:3-4 NIV)

Same thing with Samson. After many battles, he too said Lord… “LET ME DIE with the Philistines!” Then he pushed with all his might, and down came the temple on the rulers and all the people in it. Thus he killed many more when he died than while he lived (Judges 16:30 NIV).

Beloved, unrelenting battles have a way of draining you but… this is why you need to be head-to-toe in the full armor of God: so you can resist during these evil days and be fully prepared to hold your ground (Ephesians 6:13 Voice).‎ The end of the year and even your battle is in sight. Don’t give up now. Why not pray for the Lord’s strength and grace to keep standing? Jesus says… “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9 NLT)

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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24. July 2016 · Comments Off on WHEN PEOPLE CAN’T SEE WHAT IS HAPPENING · Categories: Endurance, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Patience

I tell you the truth: unless a grain of wheat is planted in the ground and dies, it remains a solitary seed. But when it is planted, it produces in death a great harvest (John 12:24 VOICE).

Beloved, a friend was telling me about someone that was a bit concerned that the people that used to support her were nowhere to be found and so I said it’s a very normal reaction. When people can’t see anything happening with you, when they think you are dead, they disappear in every direction because they think there’s no more hope with this one. This is what happened to Jesus. When they arrested and killed Him, all His disciples disappeared. “Where’s Peter, your main man?” Oh, he denied You three times. Not just that, he turned your disciples in the opposite direction… Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.” They said, “And we are coming with you.” So they went out and got into the boat; and that night they caught nothing (John 21:3 AMP).

Unfortunately, while they interpreted what had happened to be death, they had no idea that Jesus was only planted so that He could reproduce a great harvest. He told His disciples in our feature text that… unless a grain of wheat is planted in the ground and dies, it remains a solitary seed. But when it is planted, it produces in death a great harvest…

Unfortunately, the disciples didn’t understand this and so when Jesus was crucified and buried, they went back to their fishing jobs but they caught nothing. It took the same Jesus to come back up from the ground to give them direction on how to catch the fish they were toiling for… He said, “Throw out your net on the right-hand side of the boat, and you’ll get some!” So they did, and they couldn’t haul in the net because there were so many fish in it (John 21:6 NLT).

Beloved, I know how frustrating it is when people can’t see what God is up to in your life. It can also be a very lonely journey but hang in there and complete the process because… that is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.” But it was to us that God revealed these things by His Spirit. For His Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets (1 Corinthians 2:9-10 NLT).

It’s all about timing. I once heard someone say that the same orange when unripe, tastes terrible in peoples mouth but that same orange if given time to ripen, taste sweet in peoples mouth so even when you’ve started to produce and are still wondering why the hold up; “why is the Lord still holding me back?” Perhaps, it’s because He is waiting for you to get ripe so you don’t leave a bitter taste in people’s mouths.

Just be patient. Remember… No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined…

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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11. June 2016 · Comments Off on WHEN PROCESS AND PRESSURE COLLIDE‏ · Categories: Endurance, Fruit of the Spirit, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Obedience, Patience, Perseverance, Promise, Self Control, Spiritual Growth, Suffering

Saul waited there seven days for Samuel, as Samuel had instructed him earlier, but Samuel still didn’t come. Saul realized that his troops were rapidly slipping away. So… Saul sacrificed the burnt offering himself. Just as Saul was finishing with the burnt offering, Samuel arrived. Saul went out to meet and welcome him, but Samuel said, “What is this you have done?” Saul replied, “I saw my men scattering from me, and you didn’t arrive when you said you would, and the Philistines are at Micmash ready for battle… So I felt compelled to offer the burnt offering myself before you came.” (1 Samuel 13:8-12 NLT)

Beloved, if there’s anyone that has and is still going through the Lord’s process, it is me and hopefully, when the time is right, I would share the intense pressure I’ve come under to compromise my process. When you are faced with pressure, the temptation to give in is so intense but the Lord had told me never to respond to situations out of desperation but to always wait on Him. I’ve had to tell people to back off “I don’t need you to open doors for me. I don’t need you to bail me out. Just leave me let me go through the process”.

Beloved, we generally hate process. We tend to give into ‎pressure because certain situations back us up in a corner and makes us do things without thinking of the consequences. In our feature text, Saul gave into pressure because he was losing the people. He became impatient and did what only Samuel was meant to do but immediately he gave in to the pressure, Samuel showed up.

So, what was God up to here? Perhaps, God was teaching Saul patience and how not to rely on people. David, his replacement, didn’t need an army to take down Goliath. All he needed was God.

Samuel was disappointed in Saul… “How foolish!” Samuel exclaimed. “You have not kept the command the Lord your God gave you. Had you kept it, the Lord would have established your kingdom over Israel forever. But now your kingdom must end, for the Lord has sought out a man after His own heart. The Lord has already appointed him to be the leader of His people, because you have not kept the Lord’s command.” (1 Samuel 13:13-14 NLT)

‎Hmmm… If only you had been patient and just stuck to the plan…

Beloved, are you about to compromise your process? Pressure makes you jump the gun but you can’t afford to take matters into your hands. Saul gave into the pressure and lost out. Yes, process makes you wait and waiting makes you nervous‎ but… don’t run from tests and hardships, brothers and sisters. As difficult as they are, you will ultimately find joy in them; if you embrace them, your faith will blossom under pressure and teach you true patience as you endure. And true patience brought on by endurance will equip you to complete the long journey and cross the finish line—mature, complete, and wanting nothing (James 1:2-4 VOICE).

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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27. February 2016 · Comments Off on PUSHING PAST OBSTACLES TO BECOME FRUITFUL · Categories: Endurance, Faith, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Perseverance, Seedtime and Harvest, Spiritual Growth, Trusting God

Others are the seed thrown among the rocks. Those people hear the word and receive it immediately with joy and enthusiasm; but without deep roots, doubt, trouble, or persecution instantly withers their faith. Still others are the seed tossed among weeds and brambles. The word has reached them, but the things of this life—the worries, the drive for more and more, the desire for other things—those things cluster around close and choke the life of God out of them until they cannot produce (Mark 4:16-19 VOICE).

Beloved, I remember hearing of a lady who admitted she had long lost faith in God because she had been waiting on Him for the fruit of the womb for a long time now. According to her, she was only attending church because of her husband. I remembered her story as I read this parable of the Sower and the Seed and wondered how many of us have been in church for a long time but have allowed obstacles hinder us from being fruitful.

Have you ever read this parable and wondered which category you fall into? Does doubt, trouble, or persecution instantly wither your faith? Have you ever received a word with joy and enthusiasm only for the next thing you see is trouble that looks the exact opposite of the word you received? Maybe you are full of faith for a few days but then the reality of your current situation dawns on you and you’re like “what was I thinking?”

Maybe yours is the distractions of this age with its worldly pleasures, and the deceitfulness [and the false security or glamour] of wealth [or fame]… (AMP). This has currently consumed the body of Christ. We all want to be ‘made’ and famous but I remember someone saying “Yes, Jesus promised abundant life but it may not be ‘Whitney Houston’ style.

Beloved, the Lord sees our hearts, understands our motives and knows what hinders us. He is saying that we need to strive to get pass all these obstacles to get to this place…. ‎those last seeds—those sown into good soil. Those people hear the word, accept it, meditate on it, act on it, and bear fruit—a crop 30, 60, or 100 times larger than the farmer dropped to earth (Mark 4:16-19 VOICE).

These are the ones that are totally sold out to God. They are well grounded and don’t allow distractions, wrong motives and obstacles faze them. They understand that obstacles are part of the deal and that… if you fall apart during a crisis, then you weren’t very strong to begin with (Proverbs 24:10 VOICE).

These are the ones that… delight in the law of the Lord, meditating on it day and night. They are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season. Their leaves never wither, and they prosper in all they do (Psalm 1:2-3 NLT).

Beloved, which category do you fall into? Are you willing to PUSH PAST OBSTACLES TO BECOME FRUITFUL?

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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21. January 2016 · Comments Off on THE GRACE TO GO THROUGH… · Categories: Endurance, God's Plan, Grace, Jesus Christ, Perseverance, Suffering, Trusting God

I begged the Lord three times to liberate me from its anguish; and finally He said to me, “MY GRACE IS ENOUGH TO COVER AND SUSTAIN YOU…” (2 Corinthians 12:8-9 VOICE)

Grace! Grace! Grace! Today, I want to talk about a dimension of grace that’s hardly ever talked about and that’s the grace to go through some ugly situations that the Lord may sometimes allow you go through. This is the kind of grace Apostle Paul is talking about; the kind that the Lord releases over your life to COVER AND SUSTAIN you as you go through what you have to go through.

On several occasions last week, a few people contacted me saying that the Lord put it in their hearts to call me concerning what they were currently going through and because of what I was also going through, I really didn’t know whether to pick a fight with God because He was aware and just watching me go through my ‘go through’ or hug Him that He still trusted me to be able to minister to these people despite my own ‘going through…’ LOL

Anyway, I ministered as felt led but something one of them said prompted me to write this post. “I can’t even understand how I’m able to bear this”, they said. That’s when I told them that from my own personal experience, it’s because the Lord has released a special grace upon your life to be able to go through it. Hmmm, they kept coming back to what I said. They said it made perfect sense because they had no other explanation for their state of mind.

Hmmm, have you ever imagined how some people have the strength to go through what you know would finish you? Recently, I was listening to an Apostle share of when he was invited to a country where unknown to him, war was about to breakout. He kept hearing noises and when he asked, he was told that it was the sound of bombs. “What??? Isn’t this vital information you ought to have included in my invitation? Yes, I’m an Apostle but God hasn’t given me the kind of grace that He gave to the early Apostles in the Bible which enabled them to endure what they had to endure during that dispensation”. (LOL)

Beloved… THE GRACE TO GO THROUGH… Hmmm… In the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus prayed… “Father, if You are willing, please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want Your will to be done, not mine.” Then an angel from heaven appeared and STRENGTHENED Him (Luke 22:42-43 AMP).

Strength to go through was what He needed at the time and that’s what He got…

Beloved, in order for the will of God to come to pass, there are some things you can’t pray away. Rather, you just need to pray for the grace and strength to see you though… Perhaps that’s what the Lord is saying to you today… MY GRACE IS ENOUGH TO COVER AND SUSTAIN YOU…

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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22. December 2015 · Comments Off on GROWING IN PLACES YOU CAN’T SEE · Categories: Endurance, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Obedience, Patience, Spiritual Growth, Trusting God

Some other seed fell on good ground where it GREW… (Matthew 13:8 EXB).

The parable of the sower and the seed is well known but I chose this translation because of the word ‘GREW’.

That’s a word many don’t like but here’s the story of the popular Chinese Bamboo tree; it springs forth and grows 80 feet in just 6 weeks! But wait! Before you say “that’s very quick”, I read that it only springs up in the 5th year. So, for the other 4 years, what was happening to this tree?

Though not visible, underneath the soil, the tree had been silently developing, spreading its roots, ensuring it had a firm grip on the ground; a solid foundation that can sustain it so that when it finally stands tall for people to see, it can actually remain standing. The funny thing is that it doesn’t matter how much prayer and fasting the tree does, it still has to complete its 5 years of growing underneath the ground.

Year 1, 2, 3 goes by and with no visible sign, it seems like nothing is happening. Can you imagine how we are feeling by now? This is when we start to doubt. Our PATIENCE is really tested and we become desperate to see any visible sign to comfort us.

Year 4… nothing; Year 4 and a half … nothing. By this time, frustration sets in and many give up. They stop caring, nurturing, feeding and watering the soil. But finally, for those that manage to hang in there, in the 5th year, it starts to spring forth. We start to see it grow rapidly and in a very short time, you see an 80 feet tree standing strong.

Now, people are wondering where did you come from? And if the tree could talk it would ask, “how long have you got? Like Joseph, the dreamer, I was thrown into the ground and for many dark years, I was underground. Nobody knew I was there. People thought I was dead. They walked all over me. Like David, nobody knew of those silent years when I was ignored and left alone in the fields until it was time and the Lord sent for me.

GROWING IN PLACES YOU CAN’T SEE can be frustrating but like this great bamboo tree, it is necessary for your spiritual growth & development. During this period, your obedience, patience, perseverance, faith and everything else that is needed is developed. And don’t forget… death is experienced. Jesus said… unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over (John 12:24 MSG).

Beloved, is this your current situation? If so, I pray for grace and strength for you to hang in there until it’s your appointed time to spring forth.

God bless you
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16. December 2015 · Comments Off on APPRECIATE YOUR FOOTSTOOL · Categories: Endurance, Forgive, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Pain, Perseverance, Restoration, Spiritual Growth, Victory

“Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool.” (Psalm 110:1 NKJV)

The Bible tells us of Pharaoh who devised a plan to hinder the Israelites growth for fear that they may join their enemies to fight against them and then escape. He decreed that all male children born to the Israelites be killed and when that didn’t work, he ordered that they should be thrown into the Nile River. But that mandate could not stop the man that God sent as their deliverer. Moses’ mother left him to float in the reeds at the edge of the Nile but he was rescued by Pharaoh’s daughter who asked the boy’s mother to be his paid nurse. And then… later, when the boy was older, his mother BROUGHT HIM BACK TO PHARAOH’S DAUGHTER, WHO ADOPTED HIM AS HER OWN SON… Many years later, WHEN MOSES HAD GROWN UP, he went out to visit his own people, the Hebrews, and he saw how hard they were forced to work… (Exodus 2:10-11 NLT).

Can you imagine that? Until the time Moses was old enough to embark on the task that God created him for, he grew in the household of the enemy. They fed him daily and sent him to the best of schools. He was educated in all the wisdom and culture of the Egyptians (Acts 7:22 AMP). Who knows, perhaps he may have had long talks with Pharaoh’s daughter (and maybe even Pharaoh) about things pertaining to life – those things formal education cannot teach you.

So, how does this apply to us? Every single plot of the enemy designed against us is training and equipping us for purpose. I’ve heard of people that lost their jobs because of the plans devised by their enemies only to end up opening their own businesses using the things they learned from their work experience. Most people only discovered their gifting’s through the battles they have fought and won in Christ. Many have written bestseller books based on what they experienced in life. So, most people only discover their purpose through life’s battles.

Joseph was sold into slavery by his brothers and then landed in jail because he was lied on by Potiphar’s wife but God used those experiences to train and elevate him. His enemies were His footstool. He also learnt valuable virtues like forgiveness which released him to move on from the past.

As for Jesus… ‘None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory’ (1 Corinthians 2:8 NIV). Everything planned against Jesus was designed to fulfil the Master plan.

So beloved, appreciate your footstool. Please don’t let pain or bitterness cause you to overlook the valuable lessons you are learning and the promotion awaiting you. Always remember that… God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them (Romans 8:28 (NLT).

God bless you
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…you know that these troubles test your faith, and this will give you patience [perserverance; endurance]. [And] Let your patience [perserverance; endurance] show itself perfectly in what you do [HAVE ITS FULL EFFECT; FINISH ITS WORK]. Then you will be perfect and complete [mature and whole; or completely mature] and will have everything you need [lack nothing] (James 1:3-4 EXB).

I remember almost getting frustrated because I felt the Lord was taking too long in answering my prayers but then He said “if you are able to endure the process, you’ll get to that place where you lack nothing. Immediately, our feature text came alive like never before… “Your endurance is important because the Lord is working out something in you so that you will be complete”.

I remember someone sharing of the time his pregnant wife went to the doctor telling him “get this baby out of me now because I can’t take it any more”. However, after calming her down, the doctor explained to her that if the baby comes out now, some of its vital organs wouldn’t be fully developed but if she could just endure for a few more weeks, then she would give birth to a healthy baby that has the chance of surviving. Hmmm… Enough said. This woman went back home and was able to wait till the baby was ready to come out and that was two extra weeks on top of what the doctor gave her and she gave birth to a healthy baby.

Beloved, this is what our text is saying… having the ability to endure the process so we can give birth to healthy babies that lack nothing.

James said… Brothers and sisters [fellow believers], follow the example of the prophets who spoke for [in the name of] the Lord. They suffered many hard things, but they were patient [endured]… We say they are happy [or we consider them blessed] because they did not give up [endured; persevered]. You have heard about Job’s patience [or endurance; perseverance], and you know the Lord’s purpose for him in the end. You know the Lord is full of mercy and is kind [compassionate] (James 5:10-11 EXB).

Job suffered and please don’t get it twisted, it wasn’t funny at all but he completed the course and you know what he got in the end… the Lord restored his fortunes. In fact, the Lord gave him twice as much as before… So the Lord blessed Job in the second half of his life even more than in the beginning… (Job 42:10, 12 NLT)

What about Jesus… Because of the joy awaiting Him, He endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now He is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne (Hebrews 12:2 NLT).

Beloved, please endure the process because… after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you (1 Peter 5:10 ESV).

God bless you
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