Monday, July 30, 2007

Choosing Your Inheritance

My Inheritance

I am nothing
But a reflection
Of who you are;
Created in your image
Called one of your own
Co-heir with Christ Jesus;
I have inherited
Your wonderful nature
Which words cannot describe;
I have inherited
Your gifts and abilities
To do your will on earth;
I have inherited
Your riches and glory
That they may know I’m yours;
I have inherited
All you’ve prepared for me
Before I was conceived:
I am nothing
But a reflection
Of who you are;
Having chosen
To partake of my inheritance
Through Christ Jesus;
And accepted freedom
From bondage
And negative inheritance.

The Inspiration
Ten year old Chijioke listened to his father talking about the land being an heirloom. It had been passed down from his great-grand father, to his grand father, to his father, and one day it would be his. He had an inheritance.

Ufomah’s grandmother was a single mom having only one daughter. Same with her grandmother. And then her mother. So as she reached her teenage years she awaited the man who will impregnant her and leave her as a single mom. She was awaiting her spiritual inheritance.

If we take a detailed look at our lives, we might be surprised to find out that there are various things (physical and spiritual) which we have inherited from our parents (and foreparents, any word like that?). Obvious are the physical traits – the eyes, nose, etc. Things inherited could range from wealth to character traits. My mother is one woman that loves fashion, clothes, shoes, bags, jewelry, cosmetics, name it all. I have most of my sisters that inherited this from her. I called them “materialistic”. One day I realized that all my shoes looked exactly like what she wears, same with my clothes (So what should I call myself?). The truth was I had inherited this trait of hers, only that I had been trying so hard to suppress it. What happens if the traits we inherit are unhealthy? Are there things in your life which you have resigned thus: “that’s just the way it is in my family!”or “It is my destiny!” or “That is just the way I am!” Are you aware that anything you have inherited you can pass on to your children?

I like the statement by Stormie Omartian in her book “Power of a Praying Parent” where she stated that “Unlike physical traits, SPIRITUAL TENDENCIES ARE SOME THINGS WE DON’T HAVE TO RECEIVE.” As children of God who have accepted Christ as our Lord and Saviour, we are not bound to the consequences of the sins of our fathers. This is because all our sins were nailed with Jesus Christ on the cross. The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Jesus, because He was anointed to preach good tidings to the poor; He was sent to heal the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and to open the prison to those who are bound [Isaiah 61:1]. If there are negative character traits, health conditions, financial status, ways of life that you feel you inherited, be aware that through Christ Jesus you have been set free and you are free indeed [John 8:36]. It is something you need to go to God to in prayer.

Choose this day your inheritance, for your inheritance shall be forever [Psalm 37:28]. The right of inheritance is yours [Jeremiah 32:8]. The Lord is your part and your inheritance [Numbers 18:20], [Psalm 16:9]. You should choose to inherit the riches of your heavenly Father [Proverbs 19:14]. You should choose to inherit the kingdom prepared for you before the foundation of the world [Matthew 25:34]. You should by faith choose to inherit the blessings of Father Abraham.

Having chosen the right inheritance, remember to leave a good inheritance for your children and children’s children for a good man leaves an inheritance for his children’s children [Proverbs 13:22].

Have a blessed day.

Friday, July 27, 2007

In Reality

I was singing and dancing on the clouds
Singing of the peace and bliss surrounding me
Dancing to the sound of joy and laughter
Feasting my eyes on plenty and abundance
Loving the sight of all creatures in unity
Life couldn’t be any better
This I thought as I picked up my ringing phone
And got a call that brought me back to reality
Making me realize that I was deep in a dream;

I was back to the hustle and bustles of my day
I was back to asking God for HIS word that I could meditate
I was back to facing the risk of complacency in my walk
I was back to Reality
I realized that sometimes reality hurts
Sometimes reality can make us forget all HE’s done
But nothing is too much for God:
Reality is HIS assurance of HIS love.

The Inspiration
I had just received a phone call. The words were, “Esuru, I am facing this situation. I need you to pray for me. I had to tell you because you are strong. Please pray for me.” As soon as the line cut, I burst out in tears. “Lord, I am scared and worried,” I cried, “Lord I am too weak to say a prayer.” I thought as a Christian I am supposed to be superwoman. I thought I would no longer feel pain. Jesus wept. I thought I could easily bring out the Word at every circumstance. That comes with practice. The human part of me had taken over. Reality had struck. Reality hurt. Reality was tempting me to say things I know I should not say.

It is in reality that we hear that a plane crashed with children in it. It is in reality that we hear of terminal diseases. It is in reality that couples fight over who should empty the dustbin just because they haven’t discussed sex and finances. It is in reality that Christians backslide. It is in reality that the past comes like an august visitor – but only with the intention to haunt. It is in reality that children are used and abused. It is in reality that poverty and addictions cohabits in homes. It is in reality that we see events that try to test or contradict the Word.

The greatest mistake anyone of us can make when “Reality” strikes is to let go of the steady, strong hand of God. It is at this point in our lives where HE outdoes any other thing HE has done for us. HIS strength is made perfect in our weakness. It is just another opportunity for HIM to show HIS awesome love towards us and HIS great power. God’s ways are perfect, HIS Word is flawless [2 Samuel 22:31].

We should not let the enemy steal our precious time nor kill our joy. We should not give into defeat. There is a new facet of God we can learn with each circumstance we face. So we need to run into HIS presence if only to hear HIM speak softly and tenderly to us…
“I will fight for you, you need only to be still” [Exodus 14:14]
“See I am sending an angel ahead of you to guard you along the way and to bring you to the place I have prepared” [Exodus 23:20]
“So do not fear for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” [Isaiah 41:10]
“I, even I, am the one who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake and remembers your sins no more” [Isaiah 43:25]
“Before they call I will answer, while they are still speaking I will hear” [Isaiah 65:24]
“For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” [Jeremiah 29:11]
“I am the Lord, the God of mankind. Is anything too hard for me?” [Jeremiah 32:27]
“Heaven and earth will pass away but my words will never pass away” [Matthew 24:35]

HE reassures us in our times of weakness, fear and doubt – if we listen. HE hears our whispered prayers. We might need to take further steps to seek our prayer partners, brothers and sisters in Christ, people in authority and loved ones to pray for/with us.
You are human when you respond as a human to the circumstances around you. But as you trust in God, you’d know that reality is where you taste and see the goodness of God.
Have a blessed day.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

To Be Rich or Not To Be Rich

How I know you love me
I know you love me
What makes me convinced
Are the blessings before me
A pinch of your abundance and riches;
Wealth and health you did not withhold
Life and Smiles you make part of my whole
I own all good and perfect gifts that come my way
So much you give that I cannot repay;
I know you love me
I know I am blessed
I am convinced
Because of the riches you’ve given me.

The Inspiration
I had walked into the office when I heard some people involved in a heated (but friendly) argument. I did not want to get involved in such but I could not help overhearing what was the cause of the apparent inferno. The basis for the argument was that Jesus Christ should be the model for Christians, and while He lived He was not rich. Therefore, Christians should not be rich!

Whether or not I have facts to back this statement, I will state clearly that Christians are meant to be rich. We are princes and princess, the children of the Most High God, the creator of heaven and earth, who owns the earth and the fullness thereof; the world and all that dwell in it [Psalm 24:1]. We are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood [1 Peter 2:9], why then should we be living in poverty?

Before I start talking about why we should be rich, let me also point out that Jesus Christ was not poor (For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was RICH, yet for your sakes he became poor, that you through his poverty might be rich [2 Corinthians 8:9]). HE was humble [Philippians 2:5 – 9]. Humility is an attitude. Jesus Christ taught us so many things while HE was on earth, never did He say we should not be rich. With His humble nature, He taught us not to worry about the future [Luke 12:29-31], He taught us what faith really is, He taught us that we have power and authority over the enemy, He taught us that riches and abundance comes from God. Having riches is not the problem. Being wealthy is not the problem. It is what you make out of that state and what you do with the money that determines whether there is a problem with Christians being rich. For instance we know that the LOVE of money is the root of all evil [1 Timothy 6:10]. It is not money that is the root of all evil.

I remember a statement my pastor made last week. She stated that, “The Devil’s greatest nightmare is wealth in the hands of the righteous!” This is simply because the righteous man knows what to do with wealth. He will use it for the things of God (as money answereth all things [Ecclesiastics 10:19]). Why will God withhold wealth from HIS children when HE wants them to live like HE does and use it to accomplish HIS will?

What has God promised you concerning HIS blessings? They that seek the LORD shall not want any good thing [Psalm 34:10]. The blessing of the LORD, it makes rich, and HE adds no sorrow with it [Proverbs 10:22]. If I say I am blessed by God, then I should know because I am rich, and the riches do not come with sorrow. Rich means having an abundant supply of DESIRABLE QUALITIES or substances. It also means possessing MATERIAL WEALTH. It also means marked by great fruitfulness and very productive. Child of God, you are blessed and you are rich. If you did not know, you know now. If you have not started enjoying your richness spend time with the Word and find out what to do to become rich. The secret has been revealed to us and it is in there.

Paul said in Philippians 4:19 “But my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus”. He did not say some of your need. He said ALL. King Solomon talks about the gift of God when every man to whom God has given riches and wealth, HE has given him power to eat thereof, and to take his portion, and to rejoice in his labour [Eccl. 5:19]. This gift of God is for HIS children and you are one of them. David said “I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread” [Psalm 37:25]. God is faithful. HE will definitely supply all our needs.

You might say, “but Jesus said, ‘It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God’ [Matthew 19:24]”. But if you read just above in this scripture, it came after the rich man was told to sell his possessions and give to the poor. It clearly shows the attitude some people have towards their riches (and I’m using all the definitions of riches mentioned above, not only material wealth). Jesus was only telling the rich man what He should do to enter the kingdom of God, to be as a son. It is written in Psalm 41:1 – 2 “Blessed is he that considers the poor: the LORD will deliver him in time of trouble. The LORD will preserve him, and keep him alive; and he shall be blessed upon the earth: and the LORD will keep him from the will of his enemies.” It is also written that, “He that gives to the poor shall not lack”.

Being a Christian is not synonymous with being poor. It is not a reflection of the glory of God. What we should learn as Christians is the attitude of Christ towards riches. This is a topic for another discussion. But I can quote Paul here, “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high-minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy; that they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life” [1 Timothy 6:17-19].

Have a wonderful day and remember you are meant to be rich.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Loss Causation Model

You Open My Eyes
You open the eyes of my spirit
To see new treasures
Along the path
Of my walk with you;
You open the eyes of my heart
And enlighten me
With the hope that surrounds your calling
And the richness that you are;
You trust me enough
To reveal your secrets and mysteries to me
Knowing I will use it
For the purpose you want of me;
You spend quality time
Teaching me
The Truth
And the truth;
And now I know
That my walk with you
Is forward and upward
With revelation and understanding.

The Inspiration
You have not heard from me in a while now. I was on a course. I didn’t have the best of internet connectivity. I didn’t have time at all. All I told God was, “You have taken me away from writing. I am not happy about it at all.” HE definitely replied but I was too stuck up in my emotions that I did not hear anything. HE must have said, “Wait on ME, I want to show you something!”

My course was on QHSE - Quality, Health, Safety and Environment. I learnt so much from the course and from the people I met. If I start on this, I will have another novel in the pipeline. I’m sure you’re not ready for that here. This message is a bit technical but if you are patient enough, you will get the treasure in this story.

One of the most important things I took out of that course was the Loss Causation Model. Before a loss occurs (Injury, illness, damage, loss in process), there are series of events that take place with a root cause that begins this series of events. The root cause is called a Lack of Control (Inadequate standards, lack of compliance for preparedness, knowledge and skill training, etc). This leads to a basic cause (or personal factor) such as lack of knowledge, stress, inadequate capabilities. This in turn leads to an Immediate cause (substandard conditions and actions) such as operating without authority, working under the influence of controlled substances, inadequate barriers. This then leads to an Incident – a fall, a strike, stress, or being in contact with an unfriendly environment. The incidence leads to the loss. The concept of the Loss Causation Model, hence is that when a loss occurs, we need to go back that chain, realize that the root cause is not the incident nor the immediate cause, and solve the problem from the root cause in order to prevent the loss from reoccurring.

Let’s take a simple example. Someone is hospitalized because of Malaria. That is the loss (time, money, etc). The Incident – being bitten by a mosquito with plasmodium. The Immediate Cause – Sitting outside in the evening without adequate protective clothing. Basic Cause – Lack of knowledge of the implications of sitting outside in the evening without the right clothing. Lack of Control – The information was not communicated (Lack of compliance for communication). Many a times, when handling a “loss”, we usually target the immediate cause. This is only a temporal solution. Going down to the roots is the permanent solution to the problem.

This Loss Causation Model can be applied to so many areas of our lives. Someone dies of lung cancer and we say the cause is smoking (that is the immediate cause) but in truth there is more to this. What about falling into temptation? A spouse cheats. We say it is because of temptation. Again if we look deep into this issue, we will find out that there is more to this. Unless the root causes are identified and treated, such things are likely to occur again.

I want you to open your eyes to look at the malaria example again. Loss - Someone is hospitalized because of malaria. Incident – Struck by the enemy (illness is not from God therefore…). Immediate cause – Operating without authority (if you went to someone’s land and started operating, the person has every right to do with you as he pleases. If you have authority, then you can even take the land from the person). Basic cause – Lack of Knowledge (My people are destroyed because of lack of knowledge [Hosea 4:6]). Lack of Control – Inadequate Standards. Standard means the ideal in terms of which something can be judged; established or widely recognized as a model of authority or excellence. My Spirit is quickened.

God had years ago evaluated HIS Loss Causation Model and provided ADEQUATE STANDARD and basis for compliance to prevent loss in mankind. HIS Word (the bible which HE inspired) makes us compliant. HIS Son, Jesus Christ, is the Standard HE put in place to ensure there is no loss to mankind. All other means were inadequate. Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth and The Life [John 14:6]. Knowing the truth sets us free [John 8:32]. We will not be destroyed by lack of knowledge. Having Jesus Christ as your standard against loss and the Word of God to be compliant with, you do not find yourself in lack of knowledge that HE has died for you and HE has overcome the world [John 16:33]. This in turn eliminates operating without authority (Immediate cause) for we were given dominion over everything on earth [Gen 1:26]. We also have the power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt us [Luke 10:19]. Then we will not get struck by the enemy (this does not mean the enemy will not attack but our Standard, our Word of God, our authority will give us enough courage to face the enemy). That way, we are far from having a loss.

You might ask, “What does it mean when a loss occurs even though we have been doing things right?” This is not a time to blame God, yourself or “the people in the village”. Ever since God gave us dominion over everything on earth, the enemy has been trying to take it from us. The battle continues. What is true is that years ago God identified that the cause of loss/death is sin, HE sent HIS son to take away all our sins and die with them, and even when there is a physical loss, it is not entirely a loss because it was a spiritual battle fought and won, of which we enjoy the fruit of His salvation in the physical realm.

I could go on and on about this, but I have to stop here. I thank God that I learnt something about HIM from the course. I thank God for HIS infinite wisdom to put in place the Standard that will help us remain in check and prevent us from falling victims to loss.

Have a lovely day. You are a victor not a victim.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Mistaken Identity

I Look Just Like You

I look in the mirror
With my physical eyes
All I see is the same old,
Same old pretty face the world knows;
I fail to see
What my spiritual eyes see
The continuous evolution
To your image;
But my spirit is glad
That one day I will hear
I’ve seen you before
Are you not Jesus?
And then I’d be matured to know
It’s not a mistaken identity nor an insult
But the truth
That I look just like you.

The Inspiration
I was not ready for any inspiration. I had just walked past the pedestrian gate into the compound of the people I wanted to see. It had been a 3 min struggle to open that gate and I felt all my energy had gone into trying to force the gate open. The Rita of before would wear a frown and transfer all aggression on anyone that comes my way. But I remembered the words of my best friend before he travelled. He said, “smile”. So, I forced the smile. Then the strangest thing happened – a little girl ran to me and called me “Mummy”. I laughed and replied, “How are you? So you don’t know who your mummy is?” And as I walked off I said to myself, “this is a case of mistaken identity”. My spirit man replied, “Should your identity be mistaken, whose identity do you want to have? I want to be mistaken as Jesus Christ!” Then I listened to the words of my spirit.

Let me share the words of a friend to another (you know yourselves and as you’re reading this, please take no offence. Your names are withheld but just to let you know your words really got me meditating). The friend said, “I don’t want to share this problem with you because you are going to tell me exactly what Jesus will tell me. If I want to know how Jesus will react to this situation, I can always tell by the way you will react.” If anyone has told you this, please consider it a compliment and a blessing.

If your identity is mistaken, who do you choose to resemble (it is a choice by the way)? Is it Jesus Christ, who is a son of God like we are? Or a pop star? Or anyone around us that we idolize? Let me start with the words of Paul in 1 Corinthians 13:12 which says “Now we see things imperfectly as in a cloudy mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity.” God’s word, which is also likened to a mirror [James 1:23-25], makes us understand Christ only dimly in comparison with how we will see and know Him when He returns and we are with Him face to face. The good news to this came with the words of John who said, “Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but HE has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. BUT WE DO KNOW THAT WE WILL BE LIKE HIM, FOR WE WILL SEE HIM AS HE REALLY IS.” [1 John 2:2]

Let your spirit help you imagine seeing Christ and the moment you see Him you know Him because you are like Him. Right now, when we look at ourselves in the mirror we do not have complete knowledge of how He looks like (or how we look like). But we were made in His image [Genesis 1:27} and we are all sons of God, so we can be rest assured that we look like Him. As long as we have Christ in us, daily He is transforming us to His image.

What would it mean for your identity to be mistaken as Jesus Christ? It means someone sees you with characteristics that could only be likened to Jesus Christ (based on our imagination or what we know of Christ). It could be the way we talk, the faith we have, our approachability, our inner beauty, the compassion we show for others, our dedication to assignments he has given us, our integrity, how we show love, our moderation, our aura, self-control, thankfulness, our warmth, etc. The list is endless. But I wouldn’t call it mistaken identity anymore now that I know we look like him. All we need to do is reflect His character.

Beloved, I have learnt that we have what it takes to be like Jesus (there goes my favourite line again – He has given us all that pertains to life and godliness). Not only in character, but also in abilities [Power and Authority has been given to us – Matthew 28:18; 2 Cor 10:8]. This day, I choose to resemble Him.

Have a lovely day. As you reflect HIS character and glory, do not take it as mistaken identity when they say you look like (or are like) Jesus. That is what we are supposed to be.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Walk in the Freedom of Forgiveness

I long to have
A Perfect heart
But all I bring before you
Is a heart of stone
Encaged in a fort
Of unforgiveness;
I once asked
For your angels
To come break down this wall,
But now I see
It is up to me
To open the gates let your word melt my heart;
Only then when I stand before you
Only then when I say I love you
Only then when I say I reflect you
Will I know that I am true to you.

The Inspiration
If you’ve heard or read this story am about to share, it’s ok but I just have to talk about it because I remembered it this morning. I was in an airport. I saw a family consisting of four children (probably spaced 1 or 2 years apart). The eldest was about 9. One of her younger sisters (about 4 years old) fell down from her seat. Their mother was there. But it was the elder sister that carried her up, cuddled her, wiped her tears, said soothing words to her, and cheered her up, before handing over the now-happy child to their mother. What amazed me was despite the small age difference between the two (and they were almost same size), there was a powerful love that came out of the elder one, a love that gave her strength to carry her sister up. For some reason I tried to forecast this love 15 years down the line. I was expecting to see 15 times that amazing love. To my horror, I saw 15 times of unforgiveness. [I don’t know if there is a word like unforgiveness but I will be using this word a lot in this write up and I hope you understand what it means].

Let me describe in detail the picture of the 15 times of unforgiveness. I could see envy and jealously building up. I could see them quarrelling over who should get the bigger meat. I could see them fighting over rights and privileges. I could see them sowing seeds of hate because of parents’ favoritism. I could see them competing against each other rather than celebrating their differences and pursuing their separate goals in life. I could see them swearing before God and man that they will never speak to each other again because one had said a hurtful word to the other. I could see them plotting the death of the other (mere words and thoughts) because they were fighting over the same men!

I started this example with sisters and females, but that is not the start and finish of unforgiveness. The bible says “A brother offended is harder to be won than a strong city” [Proverbs 18:19]. It happens between brothers. It happens between parents and children. It happens between friends. It happens between acquaintances. It happens between colleagues. Something or some things would have happened to cause the resolve never to forgive the other. Then life goes on, not knowing we have hardened a part of our heart.

You might say, “Rita, you don’t know how much my mother abused me. Why should I forgive her?” or you might say, “That girl stole the only man I love and since then my life has never been the same!” (The way you want your life to be depends on you – your word and your choices. Don’t let Bishop T.D. Jakes hear you are still mourning that guy after 5 years…).You might say, “My father kicked my mom and all 8 of us children out of his house. Life has been difficult since then. I cannot forgive him”. My dear, I want you to know that forgiveness is a choice. You don’t have to feel like it. Joseph forgave his brothers [Genesis 50:15-21]. We can too.

Jesus Christ instructs us to love everyone, friends, brothers and enemies alike [Matthew 5: 43-48]. Peter reminds us that above all, we should love each other deeply, for love covers a multitude of sin [1 Peter 4:8]. How then can we say we love someone without forgiving the person? When Jesus Christ was teaching us how to pray, HE mentioned “And forgive us our sins, as we forgive EVERYONE who is indebted to us” [Luke 11:4]. I don’t know about you but for me, I cannot count how many times I have asked God to forgive me. And HE even forgives me for some things I do out of ignorance. HE forgives, forgets, and then adds blessings upon us. All HE asks of us is to forgive in the true sense of the word. He is not as interested in our gifts, offerings and acts of service as HE is in our forgiveness that is why HE said “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” [Mark 11:25]. In Matthew 5:23-24 HE said, “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you; leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.” Put yourself in HIS shoes. 2 of your children just had a quarrel and one is refusing to forgive the other. That one comes to you, begins to make a request and is also asking for forgiveness. Won’t you, with your earthly wisdom, ask that child to go and forgive his sibling?

I have learnt that the best way to be forgiving is to pray for the person I need to forgive (not praying curses but praying good prayer). This helps to soften my heart towards the person. I am still working on this area of my life with the indispensable help of the Word of God.

Is there anyone you need to forgive? Is there anyone that has something against you? Who is it so close yet your heart is like stone towards the person? Before you make your request to God, before you give your gifts to HIM, go and be reconciled with your brother. Even if he is far away, take the step of forgiveness in your heart.
Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ also forgave you [Ephesians 4:31-32].

Have a blessed day as you walk in the freedom of forgiveness in your heart.

Monday, July 16, 2007

God is always with you

My Confidence

I drift across the ocean on a mere string of thread
I see the waves and tides soaring with their threat
I fear not their consequences so I smile
For, like always, you are by my side;
My thread shatters but I lose no hope
To say you’re aware, you show me stepping stones
Though slippery and faltering, they help me move
And should I fall, I know it will be back on you;
I must reach that point where the clouds and earth touch
And it’s gladdening to know you’re one I could wholly trust
So I remind myself of my confidence as I proceed
That I know you will always be with me.

The Inspiration
Our God is omnipresent. HE is everywhere. HE is here with you as HE is here with me. And you know what I love more? HE is not a dormant GOD. HE is always active even when we feel HIS presence.

I remember when I first read the poem “Footprints in the Sand” {}. I became aware that during rough times the LORD is with us, carrying us, yet we don’t know it. We feel we are alone. Truth is we are never alone. God is always with us.

The poem above "My Confidence" came after I took a journey down memory lane from one of the milestones in my life. I began to see the presence of God in every area of my life even when I could not sense it. Everything was working together for my good. Then I could not understand why we were going through some certain paths. Then I could not feel HIS presence. I have asked often times in my life, “God where were you when this thing was about to happened? Why didn’t you do something about it?” The frustrating part was that I could not get an answer (simply because I was not tuned to hear HIM) and I could not feel HIS presence. Looking back now, I see HE is always there. Through the good times and the bad times. Through joy and sadness. Through sickness and health (and death can do us part if we continue living in sin J ). I recall a prayer by Stormie Ormatian in “The Power of Praying” where she stated “…In times of suffering of trial, I pray for an added sense of Your presence…”. This told me that GOD is always there. It is just that sometimes we cannot sense HIM. I learnt that instead of lamenting and asking, “Why Lord, Why me Lord!” I should simply ask for HIS presence when it seems I can’t feel HIM.

GOD Himself said “I will be with you: I will not fail you, nor forsake you [Joshua 1:5]”. I don’t know about you but I have accepted this Word and I personalize it. Not only is HE always with me, HE will never fail me (meaning HE will never disappoint me, prove undependable to me, or abandon me) nor forsake me (meaning HE will never leave me knowing that I need HIM and that I count on HIM). Even when you cannot feel HIS presence, HE is working everything together for your good. This is good news for us because the presence of God would never be withdrawn from us. God knows we need HIS presence at every moment in our lives, that is why HE assures us that HE is with us while we are with HIM. Jesus Christ promised us that “…I am with you always…” [John 28:20] and when HE was not physically present, HE sent the Holy Spirit, our Counselor, to come and reside in us. Let me try to apply small logic here; God is not a liar therefore if HE says HE is with you, it means HE is with you.

Take a moment to go down memory lane. Recall those moments where you thought God was not there. Do you still feel the same way? I hope not. I knowthat no matter where you are, no matter what you go through, HE will always be there with you. HE is one you can wholly trust.

Remain blessed in the Lord.

Friday, July 13, 2007

You need not know a man

You are all I want

I was searching for a place to call home
Hopelessly, Aimlessly
I ignored your beckon and your call
Yet you were still waiting for me;
When darkness came
You shone your light
With open arms you took me in
And gave me more than I could have dreamed;
You are
More than what I wanted
You are
All anyone could ever need
You are
Perfection and Completeness:
And I feel blessed
Knowing you want me more than I want you.

The Inspiration

A life without God is empty. A life with God is complete. There is no in between. Killing the conscience is never the solution. HE is the only one that can make us whole and complete. HE is all we need.

Many a times we look to men to solve our problems, to fulfill us (that is a hard task), to provide for us, to sustain us, and to call “our personal person”. Paul reminds us that whatever we do, we should do it to the glory of God [1 Corinthians 10:31]. If man is our source of sustenance, our provision, our healer, our all, to whom would we be giving the glory to? God is a jealous God [Joshua 24:19] and does not want to share HIS glory with any man or anything. Whatever God gives to us is good and perfect [James 1:17] and shall be for ever [Ecclesiastics 3:14].

I remember a friend of mine who had gone job hunting in a company where her uncle was in top position. That was the assurance she had taken with her to look for the job since her grades were not too good. When she told her uncle of her mission he warned her before hand, “I am not giving you a job in this company, no uncle found work for me. Go and meet whoever you know that does things crookedly to help you find a job. Besides, we don’t employ people with your kind of grade here!” Sometime later, the company put out an advert in the papers. My friend joined the crowd to apply for the job, following the prompting of God. Out of the 3000 people that applied, she was among the 1000 called for aptitude test. No matter what her grades were, I know my friend is very good with numbers and I give it to her. Okay, before I digress too much. She passed the test but during the interview stage, she was told that she did not have the right qualifications for the job openings and so they would have to let her go. Once again she was back to job hunting contacting all relatives and friends she knew. But she thanked God for how far she went. I cannot imagine her worrying, stress and expenses during that period. 8 months later, this company called her saying that they had a position for an auditor and asked if she would like to come in for an interview. What would a scientist with a low grade be looking for in the auditing sector? Of course when you are desperate for a job you will take anything. She went for the interview. This is my favourite part. She was the only person in the midst of the 4 candidates who had no working experience, who was not an auditor, who did not study any course related to auditing, who did not have excellent grades and who did not have an insider backing her. But she has GOD. The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water: HE turneth it whithersoever HE wills [Proverbs 21:1]. God was all she needed. HE is sufficient. To cut the long story short, she got the job and I have tasted from her salary. Praise and Glory be to our all sufficient God.

I simply want to remind you that you do not need to know anybody to get your blessings. All you need is God. Let us take the words of Mary just as the words are, “How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?”[Luke 1:34 KJV]. Mary did not need to know a man before the Word of God spoken to her would be fulfilled. If something, which has been established as cannot occur except a man and woman come together, occurred by the Word of God alone and without Mary having to know a man, what then do you need to know a man for? HE has given you all that you need for life and godliness [2 Peter 1:3]. Are you trusting God for a job, promotion, spouse, education, child, healing, restoration, anything at all, and somewhere at the back of your mind you feel it will not happen except one man you know helps you? God is all you need. In the message in PlugIN (, we were asked “Who do you trust?” The answers all summarized to be “Trust in the LORD, with all your heart”.

God definitely uses men to accomplish HIS will for us. But that is after we have trusted HIM to do it HIS way [Isaiah 55:8] and at HIS time [Ecclesiastics 3:11]. Whatever HE has promised you concerning your situation (and if you do not know, please check HIS Word) HE will surely fulfill. I can vouch for my GOD for HE is not a man that HE should lie [Numbers 23:19]. God’s Word shall not return to HIM void but shall accomplish what HE pleases, and it shall PROSPER in the thing which HE sent it [Isaiah 55:11].

Have a blessed day ahead knowing that HE is all you need.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Sharing something about my Love Letter

Love Letter from God

My Lord and My God
Oh! How you love me so
You’ve said it, you’ve shown it
But more importantly, You’ve written it down;
How I love your words, Oh Lord
In the love letter you wrote to me
You tell me just how much you love me for who I am
And you promise me what no one else can give me;
I read your love letter everyday
For the words are so sweet, they give me peace
I feel your presence through your words
And the sweetness of your presence I long for more and more;
How I love your words, Heavenly Father
A love letter that teaches, guides and directs
A love letter that gives me hope, encouragement and strength
A love letter that reminds me of your eternal love and grace;
My Lord and My God,
How I love you so
For touching my inner being so softly, gently and lovingly
With your love letter that’s new to me every moment.

The Inspiration
One of my blessings is having experienced life as an unbeliever and then walking with Christ. I can share with you how I viewed the Word of God, and I thank God that I can look back and shake my head with pity yet happy that at last I have found the keys to unlocking the treasures in life. Then, if I managed to go to church, it was simply out of boredom and I needed something to occupy the Sunday morning. I could sit under the nose of my Pastor hearing powerful words that simply fell beside me. It was as Jesus explained in Luke 8:12 “Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved”. While my Pastor is speaking God-breathed words, I might be saying, “This man is such a talented man he could make a great actor if he had followed the right path!” Then when they say meditate on the word, that was a different story. How could I meditate on what I have not “heard” or read? I would say within, “Let this phase end let me go and do something worthwhile.” Jesus, thank you for salvation.

I thank God for HIS Word. The Bible is no ordinary book. It is not an ornament. It is life. It is The Word. The origin of the Bible is God Himself. 2 Timothy 3:16, tells us that all scripture is inspired by God [All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness]. In 2 Peter 1:21, we understand that each writer was "carried along" by God [For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit]. This means that God used each of the Bible's 40 authors, with their different cultural backgrounds, personalities and positions, to deliver His divine Word to all of us (

I take the Bible to be a love letter from God written specially for me. From beginning to end is a demonstration of HIS love for me and the person HE used to win my love. This same Bible contains HIS words of hope, encouragement, comfort, promises, blessings, instruction, revelations, sanctification, healing…, can I name them all? HIS words provide me with all I need for life and godliness. What more can I ask for? I love the way HE speaks. HE uses words like “Test me!”, “I know the plans I have for you…”, “You are a crown of glory!” HE is Perfect, HIS word is truth [John 17:17].

There is tremendous power in the Word of God [For the Word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart; Hebrews 4:12]. The world was formed by the Word of God. If God’s Word can create the universe, what is it that you need from HIM that cannot be got with HIS Word when backed by Faith? God speaks through HIS word. What excites me about the Word is that the same word HE speaks for a situation now can be used for another situation. It is new every moment. I remember when I did not have much money and I wanted to sow a seed. The Word of God came to me saying, “Do not be weary in doing good, for in due season you shall reap, if you do not lose heart” [Gal 6:9]. The key word there for me was “reap” and I sowed with expectation. In yet another instance I said, “Father, I am tired of this walk with you. The road is narrow and the journey has not been smooth (like HE said it will be!).” His Word came to me again, “Do not be weary in doing good, for in due season you shall reap, if you do not loosen and relax your courage”. From there I got the motivation to continue the walk with HIM (and I do not regret it to this day!)

Beloved, the Word of God is a treasure you should not let go of. There is no part of the Bible that is insignificant. God inspired it just for you to enable you live a prosperous and successful life [This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate therein day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written therein. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success; Joshua 1:8]. Open your heart and let every aspect of the Word come in and dwell richly in you. Always remember that there is power and love in HIS word. Hold fast to it, no matter what you go through. I can assure you, you will never have reason to regret holding on to HIS Word.

Have a blessed day. May you have a Word to go with you today assuring you of HIS presence.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

The Table is Prepared

Who am I, Lord?

Who am I, Lord
That you should be mindful of me
You watch over me, night and day
And you bless me for reasons I cannot place;
Who am I Lord
That you should prepare a table before me
That I may wine and dine on your goodness
And be nourished all the days that I live;
Who am I Lord
That you should prepare a table before me
In the presence of my enemies
Anoint my head with oil and make my cup overflow;
All I can say is Thank You, Lord.

The Inspiration
It was the fourth day in the hotel and I had one more day to go. My money had almost finished because of the cost of internet, phone bills and buffet breakfast in the hotel. I had no other source of sustenance since I was in another man’s country and I could not speak their language. But within me, I knew I could not go on another day like that. My money had finished. I needed to communicate via internet and telephone, and of course I needed to eat. I resolved to march up to the reception and beg for some subsidy. I remembered “Vous parlez anglais?” meaning “Do you speak English?” and should they reply “Non” I would say “Biko, comprend anglais because I really need to speak to someone!” That evening was my blessed evening. The receptionist understood a little English. I told him my problems. All I wanted was a subsidized rate for calls and internet and breakfast for the last day, since my company had been using them for a long period of time. The receptionist checked my room number, checked some other details then said, “Madame Rita (I wonder why they always call me Madame), the internet in your room is free, local phone calls are free and the breakfast is complementary for the guests in the executive suite...” I stammered my thanks, very happy that I will be enjoying free services that night and the next day. But something struck me – I was having a difficult stay because I was ignorant of the free services. It was just as God put it – My people are destroyed because of lack of knowledge [Hosea 4:6].

Many suffer in some areas of their lives because of lack of knowledge. Knowledge of what? Knowledge of the blessings and promises of God. He has promised you that with long life will HE satisfy you and show you HIS salvation [Psalm 91:16]. Don’t take this statement (like any of HIS words) lightly. Salvation here is inclusive of all the blessings of God. His promised blessings includes deliverance, healing, household salvation, healed and restored relationships, peace, joy, love, abundance, answered prayer, protection, etc. The list is endless. All these HE will give you including a satisfying long life. Hallelujah!

God has prepared a table before you; please do not be ignorant of this. Imagine the table of an earthly king. Is there anything that would be in lack? From the plates, cutlery and setting of the table to the food and drinks? Then imagine what the table prepared by our Heavenly Father will be like. It will not lack anything. You have been so blessed that it exceeds physical blessings and extends to spiritual blessings.

God has provided for you all things pertaining to life and godliness, all things necessary for body and soul, for time and eternity. He has provided in abundance. It has been carefully prepared for you. It is not only for necessity but for your delight and enough to bless those around you. And again, HE surrounds you with favour as a shield.

Take out time to find out what God’s great and precious promises for you are. They are in HIS word. God is not a man that HE should lie so anything HE has promised you, HE will surely fulfill it. And yes, HE has prepared a table before you, in the presence of your enemies. But if you do not know all that is on the table, you will only taste the appetizer and your enemies will devour the many that is left behind.

May we not perish for lack of knowledge, Amen.

Have a fulfilling day.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Sleeping Beauty

Sleeping Beauty
Sleeping Beauty
It’s time to get up
For your Prince of Peace has died
And been brought back to life
He has come to plant the kiss
That will give you life eternally;
Sleeping Beauty
It’s time to get up
For the world is incomplete without you
This world that stole your dreams from you
So many things you need to do
And your Prince of Peace will follow you through;
Sleeping beauty
It’s time to get up
And take all that belongs to you
And reign beside your Prince of Peace
And live a life filled with purpose:
You are what the world is waiting for.

The Inspiration
I had written this poem sometime after “More than a Goldmine” but the Holy Spirit told me I was not ready to talk about the inspiration. HE wanted me to share something spectacular with you. We will get to it today.

One of the pains I feel when I get talking with anyone is “I used to be an XXX but stopped because of YYY”. An even greater pain comes when I hear, “I don’t know why I am here and I feel I am too old to ever realize my purpose on earth!” These are words of individuals whose gifts, talents and personality are glaring and something to behold. Something is clearly missing – they don’t know who they are.

For God to create each and everyone of us to be different means each and every one of us has a different purpose on earth. There is a reason why you are BLESSED with your physical appearance, your voice, your personality, the experiences you’ve had and the people that have come into your life. I have a friend who is very fat. Rather than bothering about his stature, he uses his time to make humorous cartoons. He is known for the work of his hands rather than his stature. I also have a friend who is decisive. She does not follow the crowd. I said, “God, what kind of lady is this? She is not a team player!” HE replied, “This is the kind of lady that will say ‘As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord’ [Joshua 24:15]”. Again I asked, “Lord, why did you make this man so calm?” HE replied, “He is my chosen servant to teach peace and faith in ME. When he tells my children ‘The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still’, they will be encouraged by his composure to have faith in ME.” There is something about you that God wants to use. You are an important part of the body of Christ [1 Cor 12:12-31]. Paul (formerly called Saul) was a man zealous about what he did. He put all of himself into what he believed in and made sure he followed it through until the very end. That was his personality. When God called him, it was the same personality he used to serve HIM. What changed was his objective – to save souls rather than slay Christians.

Paul made a profound statement, "Whatever you do, do it for the glory of God" [1 Cor 10:31]. Imagine this world if every one of us is doing something for the glory of God. Imagine if we are using our gifts and talents to bless people. That brings me to what the Holy Spirit wants me to share with you – the words of Akiane (, “I have been blessed by God. And if I’m blessed, there is one reason and one reason only, and that is to help others.” Take your time to navigate through the site of this 12 year old artist and poet who has used her blessings to bless others.

This poem is titled “Sleeping beauty” because for some of you, your beauty has been sent to sleep. They are not dead. The anaesthetic of your dreams could be the death of a loved one, heartbreak, beating and physical abuse, negative words spoken by yourself or others, self-condemnation, inferiority complex, and pursuit of other dreams (the dreams of others or lust for money or jobs that drain us of who we are). I want you to know that Jesus Christ defeated the destroyer of our dreams years ago. All you need to do is ask HIM to take you through as you accept who you really are.

The world is waiting for you. When you awaken the beauty in you and use it for the glory of God, you will find fulfillment. If you need help on books and sites to help you in discovering who you are and tapping into your gifts and talents, please feel free to send me an email at

Have a wonderful day ahead.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Because of You

Because of Me

Oh God, Oh Lord, Oh Love, Oh King
You looked down from Heaven
And saw me so filled with sin
Then you came down because of me;
Because of Me
You left your comfort, riches and glory
You resisted the temptation of the devil
You remained focused on your mission to redeem me;
Because of me
You walked this world ruled by darkness
You wanted your light to shine through me
You wanted me to know what true love is;
Because of me
You bore betrayal and rejection
You bore hatred and persecution
You bore the cross and so much torture;
My God, My Lord, My Love, My King
Many years ahead you looked and saw me deep in sin
You had mercy and compassion for me
And you came down as a ransom because of me;
Greater Love has no one shown me than this
That you lay down your life for me
Bore my sins, infirmities, iniquities
Came down to give me life, peace, joy and bliss;
So much you did and sacrificed
Because of Me
Once a sinner
Now your righteousness.

The Inspiration
I had read the words in PlugIN titled “Who are you? What is in a Name?” I had always known that my names “Esuru” and “Rita” meant the same thing – Pearl (precious, beautiful and expensive beads) but the Holy Spirit directed me to go and check the meaning of my name again. Reluctantly I did, after all I knew the meaning of my names by heart. But I was in for a shock when I saw that one of the original meanings to the name “Rita” was “Righteous” {}. Words can’t explain how I felt. I instantly spoke in other tongues. You mean to tell me that for every time someone called my name what they were actually calling me “Righteous”? For example “Righteous, you are such a wonderful friend”, “Righteous, could you lend me your pen?”, “Righteous, I’m not happy with the way you behaved today!” (Anyone guilty of this one?) Just knowing I am righteous (by my name) destroyed the last shred of self-condemnation which I did not know still existed.

One good news for you today is you are also called "Righteous" because you are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus [2 Corinthians 5:21]. To be righteous means you are morally justified {}. This is because God has pardoned all the sins of those who believe in Christ and accounts, accepts, and treats them as having met all the demands of the law. In addition to the pardon of sin, being righteous declares that all the claims of the law are satisfied in our respect. It is the act of a judge and not of a sovereign. THE LAW IS NOT RELAXED OR SET ASIDE, BUT IS DECLARED TO BE FULFILLED IN THE STRICTEST SENSE; AND SO THE RIGHTEOUS PERSON IS DECLARED TO BE ENTITLED TO ALL THE ADVANTAGES AND REWARDS ARISING FROM PERFECT OBEDIENCE TO THE LAW [Romans 5:1-10]. When God sees you, HE sees you as spotless, without sin, without blemish, flawless, and right before HIM. All these are possible because of Jesus [2 Corinthians 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him]. Thank you, Jesus.

Some of us try not to read scriptures, hear the Word or watch movies that remind us of the torture and sufferings Jesus Christ had to go through for us. We don’t want to be held accountable. But the truth remains – HE died for us. Please personalize it. Jesus Christ came to this earth to die because of you. HE looked at your life even before you were conceived. HE saw the trials and temptations you will go through and died so that you could overcome/resist them. HE saw the sins you will commit and died so that God will forgive you and forget them (and you will forgive yourself and forget them!) HE saw the sicknesses you could be prone to so HE died to make sure you do not suffer from them. HE saw the changes in economy and died so that despite the status of the economy, you will never live in lack. He saw that the enemy will devise all strategies to steal from you so HE died that you will live a prosperous, victorious and successful life. You cannot be cut off from your destiny as long as you are in Christ Jesus. He saw the days of sadness, grief and depression, so HE died that you will have joy. This is between you and HIM only. HE loves you so much.

This is not a fairy tale. More than 2000 years ago, GOD walked this earth in the form of a man – Jesus Christ. HIS reason for doing that is simply because of you. There is nothing you could possibly go through that HE does not understand, so go to HIM with any and every need of yours [Hebrews 4:14 -16 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need].

Assignment for you. Take out time to read scriptures that talk about the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Also take out time to find out the meaning of the salvation HE has given us. Meditate on the words. I am sure you will be more than blessed and your love for HIM will be new.

Righteous, have a blessed day.

Friday, July 6, 2007

The Art of Contentedness

The Art of Contentedness
Again I seek
My wish-list has increased
More of things I sought yesterday
Yet satisfaction I have not gained;
So many friends have I lost
‘Cos I could not value their worth
So many opportunities missed
‘Cos my expectations were big;
Loved ones and valuables gone
Yet I did not sense the loss
All because I failed to learn
The art of contentedness;
If I cannot appreciate
Simple things that stare me in the face
If I cannot be in glee
That HE has supplied all my needs
If I cannot be content
That HE has given all that pertains to life and godliness
I may never know peace
And the pleasure of being fulfilled;
My wants and my desires
Will definitely soar high
Lest I learn the art of contentedness,
Having all my wants may not bring joyfulness.

The Inspiration
Two friends were having a deep discussion. Let me lay a background on the two people. Friend A has no job, sells ice blocks whenever she is in need of money, and is single. Friend B has a good paying job (the kind where she says “I have bought only 2 properties in Abuja”) lives in a well furnished 2-bedroom apartment and has a man who appears to be all over her. What is the deep discussion about? Friend B does not like her job. It takes so much of her time and her coworkers are not friendly. Her boyfriend is giving her stress – he calls only once a day unlike before when he used to call 3 times a day. Friend A is listening, offering advice and encouragement. Most of her words were tailored towards “You should be grateful for what you have because some other person out there desires what you have.” But there is something she said that really is true: “In another job, you’d have some other issues, maybe not time but probably personal development or even sexual harassment. You meet another guy, he calls you three times a day but probably he does all the talking that you do not get to communicate leaving you to crave for one call from someone you could talk to”. Human beings, systems, etc are not perfect. Learn to live.

One thing I learnt from Economics (and I always got the answer right in objective and subjective questions) was “Human wants are Insatiable”. We always want more. Having one want satisfied leads to another want. That is why we often hear, “Money is not enough!” As a child, when I draw up my list of gifts for Christmas, I realized that the money I had saved up was never enough for the things on my list. I would do a lot of cost-cutting (until I had nothing for myself) and promise myself that when I have more money, I’d buy everything on my list. If I should do that today, I’d go bankrupt. I thought someday I could fault the Economists.

I thank GOD that HIS beloved Son who walked this earth is a great example for us. HE was content. The humble way HE lived on earth did not match the King that HE is (Be sincere, if you were Jesus Christ who owned everything, would you have lived on this earth having no place to sleep?). All HE was focused on was doing HIS Father’s Will rather than complaining and regretting. And Oh! I just love the words of Paul who said “…for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have” [Philippians 4:11]. It means it is possible to be content with what we have (who we are and where we are).

I entitled the poem “The Art of Contentedness” because learning to be content is an art (a dictionary definition of art is: a SUPERIOR SKILL that you can learn by STUDY and PRACTICE and OBSERVATION). I am learning to be content by studying the Word of GOD, by practicing (what else can I do when my money is always less than my wants) and more importantly by observation. I have a most beloved friend who is thankful with a plate of meal. “Don’t you want more?” I ask. “No thank you, this is enough and I really appreciate it,” he replies. “Why are you not complaining about the traffic?” I ask. “Because there is nothing I can do about it. I can use this time to listen to the Word of God or music on my ipod,” he replies. “Why do you love your mother so much?” I ask. "Because she is the best mother anyone could have. She is wonderful, prudent, selfless, (the list is endless) and I am who I am today because of her,” he replies. I am amazed at his level of contentedness and it shows in many areas of his life. One would think that because he is very content that he takes “anything”. No, he has very good taste and does not joke with the quality of his things. He just knows he should be content with what he has and be grateful to God for HIS provision. Tell me, if you are God and you see someone who is so grateful for the little you’ve given him, won’t you want to give him more?

Rather than spending time complaining about the things you have and worrying about the things you do not have, use the time to learn the art of contentedness. Take the time to appreciate the people (especially your parents and guardians) whom God has caused to come into your life. Take the time to value the simple things around you that make life worth living. Take the time to thank HIM for providing all your needs [Philippians 4:19], and not all your wants. Take the time to praise HIM for keeping you till this day with great plans for you - plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future [Jeremiah 29:11].

While you are mastering the art of contentedness, please do not go the extreme of not desiring better things in life and not aspiring to see your God-given dreams realized. Do not say “I’m content with this relationship that robs me of my spiritual growth” or “I am content with this house that is in the centre of three night clubs!” Paul, who had learnt to be content in all circumstances, was zealous about winning souls for God. He was not content with winning only one soul.

Have a blessed day and be filled with joy.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Just Beyond Your Shoulders

Just Beyond My Shoulders

I was stuck on my seat
Lending precious time to lamenting
Forgetting that I pay nothing
For the air I use to swear under my breath;
Then the Lord gave me a moment
To glimpse at HIS goodness not too far from me
For just beyond my shoulders
Were the motivations I needed:
The lady in crutches says
“I’m not ashamed of my identity”
The man limping says
“The accident left only me”
The woman in stitches says
“The anaesthesia could have been overdose”
The guy with bullets says
“Thank God for the second chance”
The mother who just lost a child says
“I’d take care of yours while you work”
The old man with tear-stained face says
“I planned to die last night had he not spoken to me”;
I was stuck on my seat
Thinking I know grief
Rather than counting my blessings
For each day I live;
And just beyond my shoulders
Were people who had experienced life
Yet praised HIM for each day
So I found myself doing same.

The Inspiration
The question Cain asked “Am I my brother’s keeper?” [Gen 4:9] is a reflection of how man can be – selfish. But thank God that we are made in HIS image and we have love in us, for HE is love. And I thank God for the people I have known that have shown me that love resides in us.

This poem came after I reflected on the love and selflessness of a great woman in my life. She had just lost an unborn child. Two days later, she had wiped away her tears and was up counselling people, attending to the needs of many and thinking of what next to do to add value to the life of her sisters. I said to her, “You are strong, you have recovered quickly.” She replied, “I still cry in secret, for I am human. But I have learnt to focus less on my grief and reach out to others. You don’t know what they are going through and most times it is worse than what we are going through. You don’t have to look too far. Beside you is someone who needs your kind words and love.” (I saw a quote in an email. It read ‘Be kinder than necessary for everyone you meet is fighting a battle’. I think the original quote is attributed to T.H. Thompson and John Watson).

I stayed with her for a while. She spent time (and money) on phone advising people who had needs. I wondered, “Don’t these people know she has her own problems?” She visited friends who had put to bed and helped them take care of their children when they needed to rest. I said, “Where on earth does one get the heart like this?” Obviously it can only come from Jesus Christ who gives us strength to do all things [Phillipians 4:13]. And what left me speechless was when a single mother (of three children) called and was complaining about work, the hardships in life, the plenty children she could not take care of (and all those things I call lamentations). My “strong” woman said, “Send me the children let me take care of them while you work. At least for a period you wont have to worry about food for them, what they will be doing while you work overtime. When you get back on your feet, I’d send them back. We don’t have to tell them there is a problem. Tell them they are going on a holiday.” UJO, God Bless you abundantly.

As children of God who have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us, we have the fruit of the Spirit [Gal 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law]. Let our light shine before men that they may see our good deeds and praise our Father in heaven [Matthew 5:16].

And I tell you today, if you look just beyond your shoulders you will see reason to be thankful to God, and a person in need of your love.

God bless you.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

A New Beginning

A New Beginning

At last
I surrender
All of myself to You
That You may
Take Me
And use me as You will;
It hurts
To let go
Of things and people I cherish so much
But then
How else
Can I choose to follow You;
No more
Of seeking
Acceptance by the world
No more
Of wondering
What people will say;
I know
You want
All of me (or none of me)
Though it hurts
But remorselessly
I leave every to follow You;
I sow
My life
As a seed to You
In faith
That I will reap life
More abundantly;
As I take
Your Hand
To start this journey
I know
This new beginning
Is worth leaving behind everything.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

More than a Gold Mine

More than a Gold Mine

I laugh
As the search continues
The search
For huge deposits
Of rare gems and fossil fuels;
I laugh
Because the best treasures
Are deposited in you
For they search
In places
So transient and draining;
I laugh
For should they come to you
Their search will come to a stop
So worthwhile will it be
For you are
More than a Gold Mine;
Do the mining in you
And watch
As HE brings out
Treasures worth more than Gold;
Show you what HE put in you
Priceless Treasures
For you are
More than a Gold Mine.

The Inspiration
I have known, lots of people, whom when I saw after many years of not being in touch, I saw great things in them. And I marveled at what God had done in their lives. I have known people (by the way, everyone whom I have come across) that by just talking to them once I see something wonderful in them (even the okada man I had a disagreement with). It even goes to the people I see on the street. I watched one of those sellers we see when we are stuck in traffic jam. The man arranged his plastic bottles of soft drinks neatly, accounted for his sales properly, and even taught the others beside him how to take care of their goods. I said to myself. “This is a great man. If he can show such organization and discipline in this little thing, he is worthy of being given bigger assignment.”

We can also recall people we must have heard about or read about that did great things (we can only bring out what is in us. This reminds me of a message I heard recently by Creflo Dollar in “The Spiritual force of God’s Word Part 2” where he mentioned that the original translation of the passage ‘Let there be Light’ [Gen 1:3] was “Let the Light in Me Be”). Personally I marvel at every single person God used as documented in the bible, and each of them was unique and special in their own way. No wonder the Psalmist said, “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well” [Psalm 139:14].

The inspiration for the poem “More than a Gold Mine” came after I had met with people whom I had not been in touch with for years. I could see that God had brought out the best in them after they had given themselves to HIM. A rascally, tomboy had become a soft children’s church teacher blessing the lives of our young children. I say, only God can take such wildness and turn it into softness. An abusive father had become a musician that ministers life to the depths of people’s soul. Once again I remind myself that only when we let God renew us that is when we can see the best in us.

So I learnt that God knows us more than we know ourselves [Psalm 139:16] and HE knows what HE has put in us to bring glory to HIM. Yeah, you have an idea because you know some things about yourself. But what you know is not all that there is to you. There is so much to you. Let HIM do the mining and show you what great things HE has deposited in you.

Have a wonderful day.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Awaiting the New Creation

Awaiting the New Creation

The seed has been sown beneath the ground
And for a long while nothing seems to sprout
But I remain patient, patient on the Lord
For the time of blooming and blossoming will soon come;
The roots are being formed, slowly but surely
Deep into the word, enriching and nourishing
Steady growth is taking place, so is transformation
And that tiny seed will bring forth a new creation;
Things are happening beneath what my eyes can see
It seems to take a while but the sprout will surely be
The roots are forming with that needed for life
And I wait for HE has made it perfect in HIS time.

The Inspiration
I have always been waiting for the day I will become the “perfect” Christian. This perfect Christian knew all the hymns and songs, knew all the passages in the bible by heart, committed no sin and also had the best character anyone could think of. That was the hunger of one who had made the altar call and expected the transformation overnight. In my innocence I went to GOD and asked, “It’s been a year after I gave my life to Christ. Why am I not like my Pastor who knows all the verses in the Bible? Why am I not like my friends who know all the hymns and Christian melodies? Why am I not like my friend who can pray for 1 hour without interruption?”

HE was loving, as always, to answer me. HE reminded me of a line I used to like in a rhyme. The line was “from a tiny seed HE makes a tree.” Then the story of germination began.

Let me share with you a statement by Sherry Rindels from on Seeds.

A seed is a miracle waiting to happen. The embryo comes pre-packaged with a food supply and the vital genetic information needed to become a plant just like its parents. Seeds exist in a state of DORMANCY, absorbing oxygen, giving off carbon dioxide, and slowly using up their stored food reserves. During this process the seed continually monitors the external environment waiting for ideal conditions specific for the particular seed. Once the ideal conditions occur, the seed breaks DORMANCY and germinates.

The word DORMANCY began to make sense. DORMANCY is the period from when the seed is sown to when it germinates. But the good news is that during that period, something is happening. It helped me understand that as I daily take in the Word, I am growing. Just as it takes some seeds 3 days to germinate and some others 18 months to germinate, that is the way it differs for us as Christians to begin manifesting the blessings of being a New Creature. But as long as we desire the sincere milk of the Word [1 Peter 2:2], there is growth taking place in our spiritual bodies and it is only natural we grow (whether horizontally or vertically) as much as we feed. That was the much needed motivation for me to passionately feed on the Word. All other things would come later [Matthew 6:33].

I also learnt that there is no “Perfect” Christian, for all have sinned and fallen short of the Glory of God [Romans 3:23]) and no human should be my basis for comparing my growth as a Christian. My role model should be Jesus Christ.

Let me end now…
You are a New creature [2 Cor 5:17] as long as you are in Christ. You grow everyday with the food you eat. Every word of God you take in is a seed and it is a miracle waiting to happen. The walk with Christ is continuous. Your role model in life should be Jesus Christ. And even if today you do not feel you are attaining the level of growth you should have as a Christian, trust HIM and be confident that HE who has begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ [Phil 1:6].

Have a blessed day

Sunday, July 1, 2007

My Sacrifice of Praise

Today I bring my Sacrifice of Praise
Now knowing why it is named that way
First because it is taking so much of me
And secondly I see no reason to give it;
But I bring to your Throne of Grace
This my Sacrifice of Praise
With thanksgiving in my lips
And joy from within;

I bless you for yesterday and today
I glorify you for your ways are not my ways
I exalt you for there is none like you
And worship you for there is nothing else to do;
May the world and its rulers hear my Sacrifice of Praise
Which I give you in this time and place
My soul waits patiently, my expectation is from you only
For I trust you and believe in you, My King of Glory.

The Inspiration
Everyday is not about good news. Life has its good times and bad times. No matter who you are, you are not exempted from the realities of life. Often we sympathize with people when they are involved in rough or sad situations. Sometimes we personally feel what others are going through, so we empathize. But what happens when you are the person involved? What happens when you are the subject of sympathy?

On one beautiful afternoon I decided to go swimming. Then I received some very bad news (I’d share this with you in one of my novels yet to be published). I tried to be strong. For a moment I was in shock. I shed no tears. There was no point. I had made a resolution in my moment of shock – when I get to the pool, I’d drown myself since there is no reason to live! I made a few calls to those dear to me, told them how much I loved them, and then took my things with me to the pool. I gave myself some good 5 minutes of “the last tears” then got into the water.

Then HE said, “In every thing give thanks, for this is MY Will in Christ Jesus concerning you”.
I replied, “I have no reason to give thanks, please leave me alone let me go about my suicide mission. How can I hear this kind of news and you want me to go on?”
HE simply reminded me of Deuteronomy 28 that started thus, “If you fully obey the LORD your God and carefully follow all his commands I give you today…” I did not want to be disobedient. Grudgingly I left the pool, went to a quiet corner and started praising and worshipping HIM. That was when I understood what sacrifice of praise meant. With time I started enjoying some of the words in the songs (from my phone because on my own I may not have remembered any) and I found myself praising HIM joyfully. I must confess that it did not remove the truth of what had happened or stop the heart-breaking hurt in my heart. But I had an assurance that God was with me, as always, and HE’d help me through this phase.

It is not easy to Praise God during rough times, but it is possible. God is a Restorer. HE is a Healer. HE is a Provider. HE is God. The devil has come to steal (our joy and rights), to kill and to destroy, but thank God that Jesus came that we may have life and have it more abundantly [John 10:10].

Take a journey down memory lane. Recall the role of God in your life. You’d see that HE is always there. HE is here for you, now and forever more.

Nothing can separate you from the Love of God. Remain Blessed.

Your Miracle is Here - Lyrics for the Song

It is here

If you’ve been waiting on God
For your miracle
It is here;
If you’ve been trusting the Lord
For what you can’t see
It is here;
If you believe in HIM
And all that HE is
If you hold on to HIM
And all HE’s promised
If you delight in HIM
And desire HIS Will
Time will Tell

For all you seek
Is awaiting your pick
Perfect gifts
Beyond what you dream
HE’s given you life
HE long paid the price
HE’s given you peace
Passing understanding
HE’s given you health
In the pack of wealth
HE’s given you One
To fulfill HIS Word
HE’s given you kids
For greater glory
HE’s given you hope
And a future to hold
No condemnation
For new creations:
It is here

So if you’re waiting on God
For your miracle
It is here;
Just reach out for it
In faith and believe
It is here;
Do praise Him for things
Your eyes can’t yet see
It is here;
The Fruit of HIS love
And Grace for the world
Is how here;

Sing Chorus till fade

The Inspiration
It started out as a dream. 3 friends of mine and myself were thanking God for the miracles HE had done in our lives and in the life of one of us in particular. Then one of my friends started singing this song “Time Will Tell” and we all joined in, accepting that we would soon see the manifestation of what HE has promised.

I woke up singing the song but by the time I came to reality, all I remembered was the tune and the words “Time Will Tell”. I decided to write it down while I was in the “White House” and the song above came into being. However the places where you see “It is here” was “Time will tell”.

I know something about my God. First of all, HE has given me everything that pertains to life and godliness [2 Peter1:3]. I also know that God is not a man, that HE should lie; or the son of man, that HE should change HIS mind; That which HE has spoken HE will do and that which HE has promised HE will fulfill [Numbers 23:19]. Knowing these things, among others, made me receive HIS promises and blessings in faith, and so I said I am not waiting for time to tell me anything. I know I already have them. It is here.

Beloved, I do not know what you are believing God for. I just want to tell you it is here as long as it is HIS will for you. Simply receive it in faith and await its manifestation. When it manifests be like the one out of the ten lepers who glorified God. Remember to give HIM thanks.

Have a blessed day and welcome to a new month.