WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN

Posted by: admin in: ● May 30, 2017

What does it all mean?

What does it all mean?

Guest Writer: Wemi Opakunle

Have you ever found yourself analyzing all the different moments that life throws at you, (both good and bad) and thinking –“what does it all mean?” If there’s one thing thing that I’ve learned, it’s not to curse your problems or grumble about your path. Your path is perfectly designed to lead you to your destiny.

The bible story of Joseph never gets old for me. If you’re not familiar with this story, Joseph was a boy who had a dream of greatness (Read the full story here). The path to that greatness however, was nothing short of miraculous. From the betrayal of his brothers to the moment he became the right hand of Pharaoh, it was not an easy journey and I’m sure the winding road was one he never saw coming.

The fact of the matter is that Joseph wasn’t sold into slavery, he was sold into his destiny. I’m sure there were moments between being thrown into a pit by his brothers; being sold five times; working as a servant in Potiphar’s house; being falsely accused of rape; and then getting thrown in prison for a crime he didn’t commit, that he couldn’t see past his pain and wanted to give up. I’m sure it was difficult for him to reconcile why all of this was happening or if it was truly for a greater good.

I can imagine the frustration of feeling like his life was a waste, and the thoughts and doubts that he must have had to endure  about his dreams and instincts. What’s interesting is that being transported unwillingly from the familiar (his father’s land) into uncertainty (Egypt), and everything, both good and bad, that he subsequently went through, led him to being thrown in jail and to the one person who would change his life forever and put him on a collision course with his destiny. What are the odds that Pharaoh’s chief cup-bearer happened to be serving a sentence at the exact same time as Joseph?

There was no way that connection could have happened anywhere else and there was no way that Joseph could become Pharaoh’s dream interpreter and eventual confidant from his father’s backyard. His life had to be turned completely upside down and he had to be taken out of his comfort zone to fulfill the destiny that only he was capable of fulfilling. Another thing to note is that Joseph’s talent for interpreting dreams was given to him for a reason. It would be the currency that led him from the darkness into the light; from the cell to the palace.

The point of all this, is to say that nothing in your life happens by accident. Every gift you have been given has been pre-ordained for you and your journey. It is important for you to know that there’s a plan and every piece of the puzzle puts you closer to completing the picture on the box. There is a place for every trial and tribulation and one day, when it all comes together, you’ll see that it all meant something.

WHAT IF IT’S NOT ABOUT THE BIG PICTURE

Posted by: admin in: ● May 15, 2017

Guest Writer: Wemi Opakunle

Whenever someone is giving me a pep talk, they often say “It’s all about the big picture, keep your eye on the prize”. I also often hear “In the end, these difficult moments won’t matter.” As an individual who looks at life as an incredibly intricate puzzle, I can’t help but think about how misleading and false these seemingly harmless words of encouragement are. I constantly find myself asking “What if it really isn’t about the big picture or the prize at the end of the race for that matter?”

If you’re a puzzle lover or have ever had the pleasure of working on a puzzle with family or friends, you know that the beginning of putting a puzzle together is the hardest part. That moment when you dump all the pieces on the table is usually one filled with a little anxiety and doubt as to how you’re going to get the mess in front of you to look like the perfect picture on the box. Slowly but surely, you start somewhere. You rummage through the mess and you find the pieces that fit. Sometimes you jam certain pieces together but realize they don’t work, so you try again. Depending on how complicated the puzzle is, you may leave and come back to it when you’re ready. You scratch your head a few times and other times, you really just want to pull your hair out. You search for lost pieces. In fact, it seems like you’re always searching for lost pieces. There are times when you almost give up but you trudge on. When a piece fits another perfectly, you jump and scream for joy.

Throughout the process of putting the entire puzzle together, you have as many moments of frustration, impatience and anger as you have elation, joy and excitement. You realize that every single piece serves a purpose and every single piece holds equal weight. The piece in the center is just as important as that on the end and so your search for each piece means that much more. As you put the last piece in and look at your completed work of art, you sigh and appreciate its beauty. What you appreciate more however, is what it took to create that masterpiece. Every step of the journey was worth it.

Life, is a beautiful, intricate and challenging puzzle. What you’ll find at the end of the journey is that although you’ve reached your destination, it wasn’t ever about the destination to begin with. It was all about how you got there. The “how” is what shaped you, molded you and freed you. You are who you are, ready to take on the next puzzle because of the “how”. So next time someone tells you that “it’s all about about the big picture,” remember that it’s actually about those tiny moments and puzzle pieces. The big picture would be nothing without them.

ROCK OF AGES CLEFT FOR ME

Posted by: admin in: ● May 4, 2017

1 Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee;
let the water and the blood,
from thy wounded side which flowed,
be of sin the double cure;
save from wrath and make me pure.

2 Not the labors of my hands
can fulfill thy law’s demands;
could my zeal no respite know,
could my tears forever flow,
all for sin could not atone;
thou must save, and thou alone.

3 Nothing in my hand I bring,
simply to the cross I cling;
naked, come to thee for dress;
helpless, look to thee for grace;
foul, I to the fountain fly;
wash me, Savior, or I die.

4 While I draw this fleeting breath,
when mine eyes shall close in death,
when I soar to worlds unknown,
see thee on thy judgment throne,
Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
let me hide myself in thee.

Toplady, Augustus, 1740-1778

 

We are risen with Christ!

Posted by: admin in: ● April 11, 2017

He is risen. Photo courtesy of Mark Mallett.

He is risen. Photo courtesy of Mark Mallett.

Mark 16:3-8

King James Version (KJV)

3 And they said among themselves, Who shall roll us away the stone from the door of the sepulchre? 4 And when they looked, they saw that the stone was rolled away: for it was very great. 5 And entering into the sepulchre, they saw a young man sitting on the right side, clothed in a long white garment; and they were affrighted. 6 And he saith unto them, Be not affrighted: Ye seek Jesus of Nazareth, which was crucified: he is risen; he is not here: behold the place where they laid him. 7 But go your way, tell his disciples and Peter that he goeth before you into Galilee: there shall ye see him, as he said unto you. 8 And they went out quickly, and fled from the sepulchre; for they trembled and were amazed: neither said they any thing to any man; for they were afraid.

The above passage is so surreal that its gives me goose bumps every time I read it! What an experience, and what an evidence of the power of the son of God over life and death. At that moment the mountain standing between mankind and salvation was suddenly found to have disappeared into the sea of forgetfulness. To the amazement of the visitors the envisaged impossibility of rolling away the heavy stone from the sepulcher suddenly became a none issue; they had entered into a new dimension of experiencing the mystery of their new victory over the heavy burden of sin, sickness and death which had hitherto put them in bondage.

The first word spoken to them by the angel of God was “Be not affrighted”.  Another victory was there and then established. The women came with great fear of the guards and greater fear of the heavy stone covering the sepulcher, they were oblivious of a mission already accomplished in heaven; Jesus Christ the crucified son of God was already risen far above the imaginations and machinations of the rulers of this world.

History was changed as all things became new and old things passed away. A new dispensation was released in heaven as the angels heralded the victory of man over the accuser of brethren. Satan had been defeated to raise it’s ugly head no more! The status of man also became elevated as he rose with Christ from the corruption of spiritual death; the sting of death had been removed forever.

The women were promptly encouraged by the angel of God, not to focus on the crucifixion but the glorification of the son of God, since the battle was already over and they were a new generation of conquerors; No more weeping, no more sorrow, no more pain. The next mandate given to the women was to spread the good news across the alleys, valleys and upon the mountains. The disciples, apostles, gentiles and Jesus’s accusers must hear the astounding news of His resurrection which must be celebrated on earth as it was being celebrated in heaven.

The graves poured out their contents as they could contain them no more and all things that were dead received the new spirit of life in Christ Jesus.  Mankind became translated from the kingdom of darkness into the eternal light of Christ Jesus; with the power to rise up with wings as the eagles; they were now to run and not be weary, walk and not be fainted. They were given the liberty to be above always and never be beneath, from generation to generation.

How does this chronicle of events apply to us? It is all about an inheritance bequeathed to us; it is a beautiful inheritance which has made us priests and kings. We are no more slaves, the blood of Jesus was used as a ransom to set us free from everything that does not come into alignment with the true nature of God. Through Christ Jesus we received a rebirth and a brand new nature. We are now victors and not victims. It’s a new dawn and a new season; it calls for great celebration. Happy Easter!

WORSHIP THE KING OF KINGS

Posted by: admin in: ● March 28, 2017

Holy, holy, holy, Lord
God of Hosts, eternal King,
by the heavens and earth adored!
Angels and archangels sing,
chanting everlastingly
to the blessed Trinity.

Since by thee were all things made,
and in thee do all things live,
be to thee all honor paid,
praise to thee let all things give,
singing everlastingly
to the blessed Trinity.

Thousands, tens of thousands, stand,
spirits blest, before thy throne,
speeding thence at thy command,
and, when thy behests are done,
singing everlastingly
to the blessed Trinity.

Cherubim and seraphim
veil their faces with their wings;
eyes of angels are too dim
to behold the King of kings,
while they sing eternally
to the blessed Trinity.

Thee apostles, prophets thee,
thee the noble martyr band,
praise with solemn jubilee;
thee, the church in every land;
singing everlastingly
to the blessed Trinity.

Alleluia! Lord, to thee
Father, Son and Holy Ghost,
Three in One and One in Three,
join we with the heavenly host,
singing everlastingly
to the blessed Trinity.


Words: Christopher Wordsworth, 1862

OPEN THE DOOR

Posted by: admin in: ● March 20, 2017

Author Unknown

Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. – Revelation 3:20

To Whom It May Concern:

I heard you are considering a new manager in your life. I would like to apply for the job. I believe I am the qualified candidate.

I created the heavens and the earth. I AM. I am the only one that has ever done this job successfully. I was the first manager of human beings. In fact, I made them. So, naturally, I know how humanity works, and what is best to get people back into proper working condition. It will be like having the manufacturer as your personal mechanic. If this is your first time considering Me, I would like to point out that the blood of My Son, Jesus, on the cross of Calvary has already paid my salary. What I need from you is the acknowledgment that the price is sufficient to pay for all of your sins, and then your independence from Me.

I need you to believe this in your heart and to tell somebody else about your decision with your mouth. The next thing I ask is the right to change and fix your life, so you can learn how to stay close to Me. I will make some major changes and revisions. They are not for you to worry about.

I need your permission to execute these changes:

– My way and in My time.

– I will change your desires and give you the strength to make the changes.

– Please keep YOUR hands out of the way. I won’t require assistance.our full commitment and cooperation. If you give me those, the process can go smoothly, without delays.

My resume

​already sent to you in advance
.

Sincerely Yours,

~God~

HOW SWEET THE NAME OF JESUS SOUNDS

Posted by: admin in: ● March 6, 2017

How sweet the Name of Jesus sounds
in a believer’s ear!
It soothes his sorrows, heals his wounds,
and drives away his fear.

It makes the wounded spirit whole,
and calms the troubled breast;
’tis manna to the hungry soul,
and to the weary, rest.

Dear Name, the rock on which I build,
my shield and hiding-place,
my never-failing treasury, filled
with boundless stores of grace!

Jesus! my Shepherd, Brother, Friend,
my Prophet, Priest and King,
my Lord, my Life, my Way, my End,
accept the praise I bring.

Weak is the effort of my heart,
and cold my warmest thought;
but when I see thee as thou art,
I’ll praise thee as I ought.

Till then I would thy love proclaim
with every fleeting breath;
and may the music of thy Name
refresh my soul in death!


Words: John Newton (1725-1807), 1779

BEYOND PROBABILITY

Posted by: admin in: ● February 27, 2017

Many times, when something we consider out of the ordinary happens, we ask the question “How did that happen?” By our own mental reasoning, the mathematics of such a circumstance does not add up. How often do we give up because there doesn’t seem to be that possibility of the breaking of the dawn? Our generation will not be the first in having a myopic view of what could be, in this universe created by the Ancient of days with whom all things are possible. He has the whole world in His hands and at His command, all things are established. The Bible has a chronicle of events and stories of people who witnessed the majesty and magnanimity of a compassionate God. Through these testimonials the average believer has been prepared to expect the impossible.

The scripture tells us of a man who loved God so much that he was referred to as a friend of God. Abraham was always in awe of a Super power that he had an encounter with when all he knew was the idols of his ancestors. This God instructed him to leave his kith and kin, and travel to a promised land where he would prosper a thousand times more. This man of faith was advanced in age when this encounter happened.

 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to him and said, “I am God Almighty[a]; walk before me faithfully and be blameless. Then I will make my covenant between me and you and will greatly increase your numbers.”

Abram fell face down, and God said to him, “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You will be the father of many nations. No longer will you be called Abram[b]; your name will be Abraham,[c] for I have made you a father of many nations. I will make you very fruitful; I will make nations of you, and kings will come from you. I will establish my covenant as an everlasting covenant between me and you and your descendants after you for the generations to come, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. The whole land of Canaan, where you now reside as a foreigner, I will give as an everlasting possession to you and your descendants after you; and I will be their God.” (Genesis 17: 1-3)

How in the world would a ninety nine years old man decode the mystery of this message? As of this time, his wife was ninety years old. How could this be? The probability of this prophecy coming to pass made Abraham laugh! “What a word” he would have thought in his mind.

15 God also said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you are no longer to call her Sarai; her name will be Sarah. 16 I will bless her and will surely give you a son by her. I will bless her so that she will be the mother of nations; kings of peoples will come from her.”

17 Abraham fell facedown; he laughed and said to himself, “Will a son be born to a man a hundred years old? Will Sarah bear a child at the age of ninety?” 18 And Abraham said to God, “If only Ishmael might live under your blessing!”

The whole scenario was becoming too embarrassing for Abraham; He wanted a way out! It was like, “God thank you for watching out for me but please just leave me with the child I had out of wedlock. Bless Ishmael and let’s leave it at that.” What this friend of God didn’t know was that the word had come out; It will not go back into the mouth of God, void without perfecting that towards which it was sent. The Word spoke the word!

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome[a] it.“( John 1:1-5)

We all know the happy ending to this story. Today, God is glorified as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Israel. (Jacob was given another name just like his grandfather.) It is good to know that the thoughts of our God are higher than our thoughts and His ways different from ours. He created us for His pleasure not His sorrow. When we face difficulties and trials and tribulations come, we need to remember our royal pedigree; we are precious in the eyes of our Daddy. Matt. 10:29-31 reads  “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care.  And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

It is always good to recognize the sovereign right and power of our heavenly Daddy Many times we assume that our situations are hopeless; we believe that we are beyond help, forgetting that we are never in charge. Why should we be discouraged, or even worry about anything; our hope should be in the all redeeming power of our God.

I always take solace in the words of Psalm 112 because it encourages us to stand still even when things look bad and seemingly impossible.

Blessed are those who fear the Lord,
    who find great delight in his commands.

Their children will be mighty in the land;
    the generation of the upright will be blessed.
Wealth and riches are in their houses,
    and their righteousness endures forever.
Even in darkness light dawns for the upright,
    for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous.
Good will come to those who are generous and lend freely,
    who conduct their affairs with justice.

Surely the righteous will never be shaken;
    they will be remembered forever.
They will have no fear of bad news;
    their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord.
Their hearts are secure, they will have no fear;
    in the end they will look in triumph on their foes.
They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor,
    their righteousness endures forever;
    their horn[c] will be lifted high in honor.

 

LIVING UNDER GRACE

Posted by: admin in: ● February 21, 2017

Depending on the unmerited favor of God can be so rewarding; it is in fact comparable to having an open check or dining at a buffet. The provision of our God is inexhaustible, every thing has been paid for; we only need to show up with all willingness to enjoy it all.  Some people actually find it extremely difficult to receive because they are arrogant and have no understanding of the unconditional love of the heavenly Father. In fact we are all guilty of not entering into the rest of God; we love God but we do not understand His ways. The book of Mathew 11: 28 is an invitation into the eternal love of God. Our Lord Jesus Christ said “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest.” What exactly can stop us from jumping at this offer? The only thing that will stop us is our minds; which are yet to be receptive to the grace of God which has been extended to us through Christ; enabling us to have sufficiency in all things. Believing the word of God is faith; accepting it is the greatest wisdom.  Doubting His integrity is nothing more than ignorance on our part. Our inability to come to terms with the pure and sincere love of the Father will make our journeys extremely long and very enduring. Israel the chosen nation of God suffered in the wilderness for forty years because of doubt and unbelief, they were so much entrenched in their slave mentality; They likened God to Pharaoh the task master who never kept his word. An experience that was divinely planned to be full of fun and excitement became a nightmare. The journey through the wilderness was prolonged unnecessarily because of disobedience and lack of trust!

Some times, we judge ourselves by our past or present relationship with God and many more. How often do we talk about how we do not consider ourselves worthy of Gods favor or mercy. A lot of people don’t believe they can receive freely even after Jehovah gave freely, His only son as a sacrificial lamb to carry the burdens of our sins.  Jesus was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities and He purchased our peace and wellness with His precious blood. We definitely grieve God when we doubt His ever good and ever sure intentions towards us; we grieve Him more, when we live like paupers in the midst of abundant provision. He made us  kings and priests with full access and dominion over the earth and it’s fullness yet we are afraid to operate in this new dimension because we are holding on to the past that has become totally deleted from the Creator’s file. It’s time to break the alabaster box, allowing a free flow oil which signifies our freedom from fear and limitations; the time has come for us to worship and bow down at the feet of the one who has promised to do exceeding, even abundantly above that which we desire. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God and the sweet fellowship of the Holy Spirit is not only a divine assurance but an eternal insurance with the highest benefits.

[ Mourning for the One They Pierced ] “And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son.
Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given.

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are.”
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
“Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
(NIV)

POWER OF THE SPOKEN WORD

Posted by: admin in: ● February 7, 2017

It is interesting to know that the words we use daily, can build or destroy us. We are living in an environment where words are tossed around like a sprinkle of salt which gives a meal the necessary flavor. Curse words, derogatory words, limiting and hurtful words sum up the totality of what we become. Energy and vibrations come with every utterance; creating a monster or a saint, hell or heaven. As we use words like “Can’t”, “Sick and Tired”, “Hanging on”, “Loser”, and many more that  become embedded in our being like plaque stuck on a tooth, we are far removed from the perfect will of God. Through incessant use of negative words, the modern man has become limited in many ways.

In the very beginning was the Word, that Word was God and the Word was the essence of His total being. The heavenly Father created everything that He made with the Word. He spoke and all things were established. That Word was life and nothing could destroy it. Through Christ Jesus we have all inherited that life; He died, rose and made each one of us His perfect dwelling place. How then can we re-write our stories? You may like to check out these suggestions.

1.  You are a creator.
2.  The word you speak is life.
3.  Vibrations and energy come with every word.
4.  You are creating every time you speak.
5.  Think before you speak.
6.   Resist every word that devalues your essence.
7.   Do not allow others to create a mess around you with their words.
8.   Speak words of encouragement into your life daily.
9.   Look at yourself in the mirror and declare that you are beautiful, smart, unlimited, and able.
10 You are re- writing your life story already.

 

The Word Became Flesh: John 1 (NIV)

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome[a] it.

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