31. October 2014 · Comments Off on THIS LAST DOOR IS UP TO YOU TO OPEN · Categories: Action, Fear, Freedom, Jesus Christ, Prayer, Trusting God

Peter knocked at the outer entrance, and a servant named Rhoda came to answer the door. When she recognized Peter’s voice, she was so overjoyed she ran back without opening it and exclaimed, “Peter is at the door!” “You’re out of your mind,” they told her. When she kept insisting that it was so, they said, “It must be his angel.” But Peter kept on knocking, and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished (Acts 12:13-16 NIV).

Hmmm… Just when you think you have seen everything you need to see in a scripture passage, somebody with open eyes sees what you have missed.

I was listening to someone say that the devil does not mind you praying even though he would do everything to stop you but he definitely mind’s you believing. These are two different things and they started highlighting the difference between praying, believing and receiving. Some people have mastered the act of praying but then they would rather wait for whatever it is they have been praying for than open their hearts to receive it because it’s too scary or they lack courage.

The thing about Peter in prison’s story is that immediately the church started praying for Peter, God went to work. It didn’t matter that they didn’t initially see anything, God was still at work. He sent an angel to go get Peter out of prison. However, here’s the thing; All the other doors that were an obstacle to Peter’s freedom opened of their own accord… They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. IT OPENED FOR THEM BY ITSELF, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left Him (Acts 12:10 NIV).

The church didn’t have to do anything. All the doors opened of their own accord but the Lord left the last door for Peter to knock on and the church that had been praying for Peter had to receive him. The Lord was not going to open that door. It was up to them to open it.

Hmmm… what am I trying to say? Do you lack the courage to open the door to what God has sent your way and simply receive it? Everything is already in place waiting for you. All you need to do is go for that interview and the Job is yours. All you need to do is put in your proposal and the contract or whatever it is you are after is yours. All you need to do is speak to that person and the answer is yes.

I ask again… Do you lack the courage to open the door to what God has sent your way and simply receive it?

“…I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you (Luke 11:9 NIV).

God bless you
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30. October 2014 · Comments Off on BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY · Categories: Jesus Christ, Self Control, Words

The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit (Proverbs 18:21 NIV).

A few years ago, someone was complaining that they had the flu. They told me that their son had caught it earlier and immediately he caught it, they just knew that they too were going to catch it. They repeated it again; I just knew that I was going to catch it. So I said why are you complaining then? You just knew you were going to catch it and there it is. They were speechless but it brought some awareness that we should be careful about the things we say.

I also remember a story that was told of a woman that bought a car and the words that continually came out of her mouth, according to my people was that… I just know that one day… one day… I’m going to use this car to have an accident. What negative confession? You won’t believe that it happened just as she had predicted with her mouth. And then she started saying… Didn’t I say it? I said it! Yes, you said it dear so now don’t complain. You were calling forth those things which do not exist as though they did (Romans 4:17). And the Lord has given you the same power to say… Let there be… and so it was…

The same person telling this story started advising that as a trader who has a shop in the market (for example), when it rains in the morning, instead of saying I just know that today is going to be a bad day – nobody is going to come to my shop because of the weather. Why not say… thank you Lord for today because I know that because of this rain, the people that enter this shop would just camp here and buy all they need.

Wow… sounds like a better option to me. They sure wouldn’t want to go about in the rain so they might as well get all they need from this shop. Sounds like something I would do.

What am I saying? The words that we speak have so much power. The New Living Translation says… The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences… I know that there are times when the words come out of our mouths before we can catch them but we need to washout our mouths thoroughly and start to really think before we speak. If possible, we can start to talk really slowly if that’s what it takes.

It all starts with our thoughts and what we feed ourselves… whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things (Philippians 4:8 NKJV).

God bless you
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29. October 2014 · Comments Off on YOU CAN DO IT IF YOU REALLY WANT TO · Categories: Action, Choices, Jesus Christ, Self Control, Spiritual Growth, Trusting God

My doctor told me to do a fasting blood test so I started writing this post from the hospital as I waited in the queue to do the test.

A fasting blood test just means that you don’t eat or drink anything except water for 8 to 10 hours prior to the test so that it does not affect the test results. I wasn’t sure of the timeframe so I had my last meal very early the previous evening. However, because I’m usually up till the early hours of the morning, I tend to eat late which I know isn’t good but that’s been my recent struggle. PLEASE PRAY FOR ME. As a result, I found myself in a real battle. I was so hungry. My eyes were turning; my tummy was singing but because I knew it would affect my results, giving in wasn’t an option. I couldn’t even have a cup of tea. I kept on saying Lord I’m so hungry, please help me and in the end, I made it.

Now, why am I sharing this? The thing is fasting has always been a challenge for me. It’s only on a few occasions I’ve been able to do a full day’s fast. Many times, when I get that hungry I come up with a valid reason to break the fast but with my little experience, I felt like the Lord was showing me that… see, you can do it. You just have more faith in your doctor than you have in Me. What a shame!

Apostle Paul alerts us to the fact we are in a battle and that… the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want (Galatians 5:17 NIV) but Jesus advises that we should… “Watch and pray so that you [we] will not fall into temptation. THE SPIRIT IS WILLING, BUT THE FLESH IS WEAK.” (Matthew 26:41 NIV).

It’s indeed a battle and the flesh is indeed weak but my experience has shown that I CAN DO IT IF I REALLY WANT TO. Back in the days, I remember a song by Jimmy Cliff that says…. You can get it if you really want but you must try… try and try… and you’ll succeed at last..

My own version is… YOU CAN DO IT IF YOU REALLY WANT… It just depends on the importance you place on it or how badly you want it. As it happens, the month of November has been declared a month of fasting in my church so now that I know I can do it, all I can say is GOD HELP ME!.

In what areas are you struggling? Do you know that you can do it if you really want? Paul says… I can do all this through Him who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13 NIV).

God bless you
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28. October 2014 · Comments Off on DO YOU GO TO THE SOURCE OR THE RESOURCE? · Categories: God's Plan, Help, Jesus Christ, Prayer, Trusting God

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for He founded it on the seas and established it on the waters (Psalm 24:1-2 NIV).

A few months ago, I remember reading on someone’s Facebook wall that “THE LORD IS MY ONLY SOURCE, EVERYTHING ELSE IS JUST A RESOURCE HE USES TO BLESS ME”. How true! The word ‘SOURCE’ means “a place, person, or thing from which something originates or can be obtained”. This is exactly what the above Psalm is talking about. God is the Person from which everything on this earth originates and can be obtained.

A while ago, someone told me that every time there was a need in the house and they went to ask their spouse for money to meet that need, it always resulted in one quarrel or the other just because of money challenges they were going through at the time. So after battling with this for a while, they decided to change their strategy. Whenever a need arouse in the house, instead of asking their spouse for money, they decided to ask God and leave it with Him to sort out. As they started to do this, you wouldn’t believe that the same spouse that used to get so agitated and quarrelsome was the one that started coming to them to say… you know… we need to do this, this and this; leave it with me and I’ll sort it. Hmmm… and they were thinking in their mind… Really? I know dear. I was the one that asked God who in turn placed the burden in your heart. Brilliant! Brilliant! Brilliant!

Most times, when we have a need, we tend to go to the resource rather than the source which can sometimes leave us disappointed but if only we can change our strategy and go straight to the source, He would be the one to allocate His resources. The case of Peter comes to mind. They needed to pay taxes so they came to the source Himself who in turn told them where to go… go down to the sea and throw in a hook. Take the first fish that comes up, and when you open its mouth you will find there a shekel. Take it and give it to them to pay the temple tax for Me and for yourself (Matthew 17:27 AMP).

Hmmm… The Lord is your source not your employer, bank manager or anyone else. He… knows what you need before you ask Him (Matthew 6:8 AMP) and He is waiting for you to come to Him for what you need. Just as Jesus taught us to pray, we are to come to Him on a daily basis and say… Give us this day our daily bread… (Matthew 6:11 AMP)

God bless you
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27. October 2014 · Comments Off on THE POWER OF AGREEMENT · Categories: Agreement, Blessing, God's Plan, Jesus Christ

And the Lord said, Behold, they are one people and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do, and now NOTHING THEY HAVE IMAGINED THEY CAN DO WILL BE IMPOSSIBLE FOR THEM (Genesis 11:6 AMP).

THE POWER OF AGREEMENT is so strong that in the above scripture, the people had come together in agreement to do something that was against the will of God and because they were all in agreement and speaking one language, they would have succeeded. However, God had to come down and scatter them saying if they continue like this… NOTHING THEY HAVE IMAGINED THEY CAN DO WILL BE IMPOSSIBLE FOR THEM.

If there’s anything the devil and his gang understand so well, it is the power of agreement and while in his own kingdom, there’s powerful agreement, he does everything he can to make sure there’s no agreement in our homes, in our relationships and in our churches and that’s why today there’s so much division amongst Christians and Jesus said… “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand (Matthew 12:25 NKJV).

However, Jesus also said… if two of you on earth agree (harmonize together, make a symphony together) about whatever [anything and everything] they may ask, it will come to pass and be done for them by My Father in heaven (Matthew 18:19 AMP).

For somebody, if only you can really catch this powerful revelation, about half of your problems would be resolved straight away. You would realise that all the quarreling and the fighting everyday is not worth it at all because when in agreement… nothing you have imagined you can do will be impossible for you. I remember someone saying to his wife one time; “let’s not even agree for love’s sake, but for our prayers to pass the roof of this house and reach out to our Father in heaven”.

Hmmm… if there’s any wise action you can decide to take from today, it is to come up with a strategy to walk and work in agreement so as to experience the Lord’s great power and blessings.

Picture this… Imagine that every time the angels sent to deliver your blessings come to your house they always meet you fighting. So instead of delivering the blessings they were sent to deliver, they are always busy separating fight. Can you imagine the Lord saying “bring it back or give it to their neighbour, they are not ready for it just yet; They are not in the right state of mind to receive it. It would only result in more fighting.

Hmm… these are just my thoughts, but David said… How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in unity!… FOR THERE THE LORD BESTOWS HIS BLESSING… (Psalm 133: 1,3 NIV).

God bless you
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He showed [revealed] His ways to Moses and His deeds to the people [sons] of Israel (Psalm 103:7 EXB).

Once upon a time, I only listened to encouraging sermons while going through trials—the ones that tend to show you the exit route rather than the elevator. However, as I started to learn more about God, those sermons were no longer as important because you don’t really get to experience God’s character and the fullness of Him that way.

My focus is now on getting to know the mind of God and how He works. The New Living Translation says God… revealed His character to Moses and His deeds to the people of Israel and I believe this was what King David meant.

Oh yes, the Lord made some great promises to the Israelites and like most of us, while the destination is sometimes more important to us, firstly, God is more interested in us getting to know the One who made the promise better and secondly, He is also very interested in the development of our character so that we are able to sustain His great blessings.

The Israelites watched as God opened the Red Sea and swallowed all their enemies. However, with these enemies long gone, it’s hard to understand why it took them another 40 years to enter the Promised Land. It was not their enemies’ stopping them this time. So why the further delay? Well, maybe it’s because they had a different kind of enemy—the ones I call “internal enemies”. These include things such as disobedience, pride, and anger. Most times, these are the kind of enemies that are very hard to get rid of because while God would help you fight your external enemies, the internal enemies are the ones you’ve got to roll up your sleeves and fight. As Christians, we are blessed to have the help of the Holy Spirit, but don’t be deceived, you have a big part to play in subduing your habits, emotions, and desires that run contrary to the God in you. As a result, God takes you on this journey that focuses on refining your character first; something a popular American preacher usually refers to as… “THE THINGS WE LEARN ALONG THE WAY”.

The New Living Translation Bible says this about Joseph… Then He sent someone to Egypt ahead of them—Joseph, who was sold as a slave. They bruised his feet with fetters and placed his neck in an iron collar. Until the time came to fulfil his dreams, THE LORD TESTED JOSEPH’S CHARACTER (Psalm 105:17-19 NLT).

The trial you are facing could be to test and refine your character. Take it from one who has been there. Don’t always look for the exit route. Let God finish His work.

… Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tried and chosen you in the furnace of affliction (Isaiah 48:10 AMP).

God bless you
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25. October 2014 · Comments Off on REALLY TRY JESUS · Categories: Action, Choices, Deliverance, Faith, Healing, Help, Jesus Christ, Relationship, Trusting God

And there was a woman who had had a flow of blood for twelve years, and who had endured much suffering under [the hands of] many physicians and had spent all that she had, and was no better but instead grew worse. She had heard the reports concerning Jesus, and she came up behind Him in the throng and touched His garment, For she kept saying, If I only touch His garments, I shall be restored to health (Mark 5:25-28 AMP).

There are some desperate conditions or situations that you find yourself where giving up is not an option. The woman with flow of blood had spent all that she had; money, perhaps jewellery and all her property to try and get better. She kept on going from place to place; perhaps someone would say to her that there is this man in so and so place, if you can only just see him, all your problems would be over. That would give her hope and she can’t wait till morning to make her way down there. On getting there, they prescribe a solution which she follows to the very last instruction. However, one day turns to one week which then turns to one month and nothing happens and that’s the worst feeling because… Hope deferred makes the heart sick… (Proverbs 13:12 AMP)

It won’t have been so bad if she stayed the same but instead she got worse. However, the good news is that after her experience with all these others physicians, when she heard the reports concerning Jesus, she could have said… hmmm… they are all the same; what does He have to offer that I haven’t tried before. You know there are times when you’ve tried everything; you go from place to place, they’ve prayed for you, fasted with you, smeared you with anointing oil, and when you hear of an opportunity to really reach out to Jesus, you start to think… which one is this one again? They are all the same but we must applaud this woman that she had to make a decision to try Jesus after all her past disappointments.

Bleeding for twelve good years, this woman was fast loosing life and she could have said let me just accept my misery and die but she took a step of faith and touched Jesus… and immediately her flow of blood was dried up at the source, and [suddenly] she felt in her body that she was healed of her [distressing] ailment (Mark 5:29 AMP).

I don’t know what aspect of your life is wasting away but know that touching Jesus is different from just going to church. There was a crowd with Jesus but in the midst of that crowd, Jesus felt this woman’s touch. Why not really open up to Jesus today? O taste and see that the Lord [our God] is good!… (Psalm 34:8 AMP).

God bless you
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24. October 2014 · Comments Off on DON’T STAY BITTER · Categories: Blessing, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Relationship, Restoration, Trusting God

…“Don’t call me Naomi,… Instead, call me Mara, for the Almighty has made life VERY BITTER for me. I went away full, but the Lord has brought me home empty. Why call me Naomi when the Lord has caused me to suffer and the Almighty has sent such tragedy upon me?” (Ruth 1:20-21 NLT).

These were the words of Naomi, a very bitter woman whose only wish was to support her husband in providing for their family. There was famine in the land and she obediently follows her husband with their two sons to go and live in Moab. But then her whole family dies and now she’s left with nothing but the clothes on her back. She doesn’t understand how it turned out like this. This wasn’t what we had in mind when we set out. It was for greener pastures but now I’ve lost everything. She can’t understand why the Lord has dealt her a bitter blow.

I don’t know about you but I can so identify with Naomi turning around and blaming God. Just when you think you’ve got it all together, have you ever seen everything you’ve worked so hard for disappear one by one while you are trying your best to serve Him and you’re wondering what… what… what?

However, in Naomi self-pity, she almost sends away the blessing that was right in front of her (Ruth 1: 16-17). Isn’t it funny how our blessing can be right there in front of us but because of everything else going on around us we don’t see it? Same with the widow when she thought she would lose her two sons as ransom for her debts. Elisha showed her what she had in her house (2 Kings 4:2). Same thing when Hagar ran out of water and feared that her son would die. The Lord opened her eyes and she saw a well of water right by her side (Genesis 21:19).

Naomi’s situation didn’t stay that way forever. God placed Ruth in her life for a reason. Yes, she lost her husband and two sons and it would be inhuman if she didn’t feel the pain but in the end, she gained a king. Ruth ended up marrying Boaz the millionaire and they had a son and…

Naomi took the baby and cuddled him to her breast. And she cared for him as if he were her own. The neighbor women said, “Now at last Naomi has a son again!” And they named him Obed. He became the father of Jesse and the grandfather of David (Ruth 4:16-17 NLT). Jesus also came from this lineage.

Who would have thought there could ever be a happy ending? There are times when the Lord allows us to be emptied so He can fill us with His great purpose so don’t stay bitter. Rather, why not hand everything over to Jesus and watch Him turn it around. Also, ask Him to open your eyes so you can see the blessing hidden in the midst of the turmoil.

God bless you
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23. October 2014 · Comments Off on DON’T GET STUCK · Categories: Action, Choices, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Patience, Restoration

You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in Your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. How precious are your thoughts about me, O God? They cannot be numbered! (Psalm 139:16-17 NLT)

I find that a lot of people get stuck in a particular stage of their lives because of something bad that happened to them. If that’s you, I know what it’s like but I can also testify that if you can keep moving on, you’ll find that God has many surprises in stock for you. Everything concerning you has already been recorded in His book—the good, the bad, and the ugly, and despite what stage of life you’re in right now, you need to understand that God’s book is full of countless, precious thoughts about you, thoughts that cannot be numbered.

King David was a king, but he was also a shepherd boy. He must have had to turn over that page that recorded that he was a shepherd boy to get to the page that recorded that he was anointed king. He was employed to play music for an insane king, but he must have had to pass the page that recorded that he was employed to play music for that insane man. His enemies were after him on every side, but he had to turn past the page that recorded that he was running from his enemies and had to hide in caves. He kept on turning the pages until he got to the page that said “and now David becomes king”. Even then, he committed adultery and murder, but he had to turn past the page that recorded that he committed adultery and murder.

David’s pages were full of many ups and downs. Keywords like rejection, betrayal, murder, adultery, king, warrior, death of his son, worshipper, etc., can all be found in the index of his book, but he kept turning the pages, and through it all he’s remembered today as a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22) and in the lineage of Jesus Christ (Matthew 1:6).

What am I trying to say? The page you might be on now may not be so good, but don’t forget that there’s the next page. Just keep turning the pages. I had to turn through so many pages to get to where I am now and honestly, there are days where I have to struggle but I’ve decided to keep turning the pages.

So, are you currently stuck on a particular page? You’ve got to believe that there are better days and things ahead of you. But unfortunately if you cannot bring yourself to turn past the page you are stuck on right now, you may never be able to get on to the next page in your life. So what’s your decision going to be?

…for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again…(Proverbs 24:16 NIV)

God bless you
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22. October 2014 · Comments Off on ARE YOU LOCKED BEHIND CLOSED DOORS? · Categories: Action, Fear, Freedom, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Peace, Talents

Then on that same first day of the week, when it was evening, though the disciples were BEHIND CLOSED DOORS for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, Peace to you! (John 20:19 AMP)

Hearing the phrase ‘LOCKED BEHIND CLOSED DOORS’, we can immediately visualise a physical door locked with a key. No one can come in or go out unless you open the door and let them through. However, do you know there are many people locked behind an invisible closed doors locked with a key called fear? They’ve refused to let people in and they certainly are scared to come out.

Fear is a very strong negative weapon used by the enemy and if given room can cripple one. It is caused by the belief that something bad is going to happen or someone’s likely to cause you pain or harm. Many fear failure and so don’t want to try anything.

You’ll find fear rearing its ugly head when Jesus talks about the Parable of the Talents. The servant that did nothing with his talent said… I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground…(Matthew 25:25 AMP). Many like this servant have gifts and talents placed inside of them but fear of failure has made them bury their talents and they are LOCKED BEHIND A CLOSED DOOR.

Others are just afraid because they have seen bad things happen to people close to them so they feel the same would happen to them. After Jesus was crucified, His disciples feared that the same thing would happen to them so they locked themselves behind closed doors but I love that Jesus would always locate you in the place of your hiding. Please know that Jesus will never leave you so get rid of the fear and come out of that closed door.

It’s not only people locked up in prison that are behind bars but there is a level you would walk with Jesus that you become confident that nothing can hold you back. Peter was physical locked up in prison but he wasn’t spiritually or mentally locked up. He had the key of peace and so when bound with two chains and placed between two soldiers, he slept peacefully until an angel of the Lord came to his rescue and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists (Acts 12:6-7)

Has fear got you LOCKED BEHIND CLOSED DOORS? Think of what it’s preventing you from doing and know that God has not given you that spirit of fear… For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control (2 Timothy 1:7 AMP).

God bless you
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