02. December 2014 · Comments Off on ARE THEY REALLY SURPRISED? · Categories: Alcohol and Drunkenness, Change, God's Plan, Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ, Repentance, Salvation, Sin

For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do—living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry. THEY ARE SURPRISED THAT YOU DO NOT JOIN THEM in their reckless, wild living, and they heap abuse on you (1 Peter 4:3-4 NIV).

THEY ARE SURPRISED THAT YOU DO NOT JOIN THEM… Hmmm… I was reading this verse and thinking to myself that as a Christian, one of the clear signs that you have been changed is when the people around you (not your church folk) but the people that used to know the old you can testify that there is something different about your lifestyle. As I was reading this verse, I remembered what someone who airs their church services online and on TV said. They said that people would see some of the people in the church on TV and be shocked that they are seeing them in church because things won’t add up. They would say… You? Go to church? You? A Christian? I must be seeing double.

I was actually going to say ‘LOL’ but it’s not funny. I also remembered when we went to Spain. The pastor that hosted us was telling us a story of the time when he got up to preach and out of surprise, a lady in the congregation got up and shouted… You? You that I used to know in those days to drink heavily and do all sorts of things… You? Preaching in front of a congregation? You?

He said for a moment he was confused. What do I say now? However, he immediately asked the Holy Spirit to help him and so was able to answer back saying “Yes, me and this can be your testimony too if you hand your life over to Jesus”. That did it. This lady was surprised to see him now preaching the gospel of Christ but she was also convicted… “If the Lord can change such a person, He can also change me” and that day she repented.

So the message today is a simple and short one. Are people really surprised about you? The Amplified Bible says… They are astonished and think it very queer that you do not now run hand in hand with them in the same excesses of dissipation, and they abuse [you]. The message translation says… Of course, your old friends don’t understand why you don’t join in with the old gang anymore…

So are people surprised to see the changes in you or are they surprised that you call yourself a Christian? Let’s not be deceived God is not mocked. He is also the One that can help bring about the change He desires (Philippians 2:13) so why not speak to Him today?

God bless you
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19. July 2014 · Comments Off on WHAT DO YOU TURN TO FOR RELIEF? · Categories: Action, Alcohol and Drunkenness, Choices, Freedom, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Prayer

Recently, someone sent me a picture of myself when I was very big. It looked like I started from one end of the room and ended at the other end (LOL).The picture brought back many memories of those days when I was going through a lot. Things were not working out for me and the only thing that gave me comfort was food and loads of it.

The thing is that until we really get to understand the abundant life that Jesus came to give us, we all have things that we turn to to try and fill the voids in our lives. It just so happened that mind was food. You know what yours is… loads of sex (with different partners) … drugs… money…???

I remember using this story during my ministration in the women’s conference I recently attended. Hannah was a woman who was so depressed because she could not have children for her husband and he tried to comfort her by giving her a double portion of food (1 Samuel 1:5 AMP). However, Hannah was not about to be trapped into any kind of comfort eating… So it was year after year; whenever Hannah went up to the Lord’s house, Peninnah provoked her, so she wept and did not eat (1 Samuel 1:7 AMP).

Peninnah was Hannah’s rival and I like Hannah’s approach. FOOD? While another woman is on top of the mountain praying and fasting for your husband, you are there eating. He is busy taking you to all the posh restaurants in town but remember that Jesus said… THIS KIND does not go out except by prayer and fasting (Matthew 17:21 AMP).

Hannah did not take to drinking either. She went up to the temple of the Lord to pray and… Hannah was speaking in her heart; only her lips moved but her voice was not heard. So Eli thought she was drunk. Eli said to her, How long will you be intoxicated? Put wine away from you. But Hannah answered, No, my lord… I have drunk neither wine nor strong drink, but I was pouring out my soul before the Lord (1 Samuel 1:13-15 AMP).

The Message translation says… Hannah said, “Oh no, sir… I haven’t been drinking. Not a drop of wine or beer.

The thing was that during that time of the year, there was celebration everywhere with people drinking like no man’s business, hence the reason Eli thought she must have been a drunken woman that just happened to stagger into the temple. But Hannah had to correct him… BIG STOUT… GUILDER… MARTEL CANNOT SOLVE THIS KIND OF PROBLEM. Rather than take to comfort eating and drinking to numb her problems… Hannah turned to the Lord and prayed and He answered her prayers (1 Samuel 1:20).

The things we turn to other that Jesus only serve as a temporary relief. These are the things the world tends to deceive us with but Jesus said… Whoever believes in Me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.” (John 7:38 NIV).

SELAH!

God bless you
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We often look at the Book of Esther from Esther’s point of view and how it all fitted into God’s plan but today let’s look at it from another angle and how it speaks to today’s problem in marriages.

King Xerxes threw a wild party… Drinks were served… and there was an abundance of royal wine, reflecting the king’s generosity. By edict of the king, no limits were placed on the drinking, for the king had instructed all his palace officials to serve each man as much as he wanted (Esther 1:7-8 NLT). And then after too many bottles… when King Xerxes was in high spirits because of the wine, he told the seven eunuchs who attended him… to bring Queen Vashti to him with the royal crown on her head. He wanted the nobles and all the other men to gaze on her beauty, for she was a very beautiful woman (Esther 1:10-11 NLT).

Under the influence of too much alcohol, the conversation soon moves from whatever they’ve been discussing to their wives… placing them down on the table to be slaughtered; either bragging or comparing their wives features with each other’s; Who cooks or cleans better, who respects better… who looks hotter… etc… etc… etc.

However, Queen Vashti refuses to be slaughtered and… this made the king furious, and he burned with anger. HE IMMEDIATELY CONSULTED WITH HIS WISE ADVISERS… “What must be done to Queen Vashti? …” Memucan answered the king and his nobles, “Queen Vashti has wronged not only the king but also every noble and citizen throughout your empire. WOMEN EVERYWHERE WILL BEGIN TO DESPISE THEIR HUSBANDS when they learn that Queen Vashti has refused to appear before the king. Before this day is out, the wives of all the king’s nobles … will hear what the queen did and will start treating their husbands the same way… (Esther 1:12-18 NLT).

HE IMMEDIATELY CONSULTED WITH HIS WISE ADVISERS … It’s interesting that they used him as scapegoat for their own agenda… something they probably couldn’t do on their own. What was their advice? We propose that … Queen Vashti be forever banished from the presence of King Xerxes, and that the king should choose another queen more worthy than she (Esther 1:19 NLT).

Isn’t this familiar? There are many beautiful women in town. Send your wife away and go after another. And it sounded good then… but after Xerxes’ anger had subsided, he began thinking about Vashti and what she had done and the decree he had made (Esther 2:1 NLT). The Message translation says… Later, when King Xerxes’ anger had cooled and he was having second thoughts …

There’s always the morning after when you come to your senses. Let that time be now. Those friends that you hang around with who give you bad advice… your first step to recovery is to take the necessary steps to separate from them as they are bound to wreck your home. And this advice is for the ladies too.

God bless you
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