Friday, July 31, 2009

Something on Testimonies

For some time, I thought it was vain to talk about those good things God has done for me. I also felt I was living in past glory when I kept thinking about His love, mercy and faithfulness from time past. In recent times, I have begun to appreciate more the things He has done for me. The testimonies are endless. Just when I was thinking that I would have to stop dwelling on and sharing testimonies, I stumbled upon this:

Blessed are they that keep Your testimonies and seek You with their whole heart [2].
I have rejoiced in the way of Your testimonies, as much as in all riches [14].
Remove from me reproach and contempt, for I have kept Your testimonies [22].
Your testimonies also are my delight and my counselors [24].
I have held fast unto Your testimonies; O LORD, put me not to shame [31].
Incline my heart unto Your testimonies, and not to covetousness [36].
I will speak of Your testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed [46].
I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto Your testimonies [59].
Quicken me according to Your lovingkindness; so shall I keep the testimony of Your mouth [88].
I have more understanding than all my teachers, for Your testimonies are my meditation [99].
Your testimonies have I taken as a heritage forever, for they are the rejoicing of my heart [111].
I am Your servant; give me understanding, that I may know Your testimonies [125].
Your testimonies are wonderful; therefore does my soul keep them [129].
Your testimonies that You have commanded are righteous and very faithful [138].
The righteousness of Your testimonies is everlasting; give me understanding, and I shall live [144].
Concerning Your testimonies, I have known of old that You have founded them forever [152].
I may have persecutors and enemies*, yet do I not depart from Your testimonies [157].
My soul hath kept Your testimonies, and I love them exceedingly [167].
I have kept Your precepts and Your testimonies, for all my ways are before You [168].

All lines here are taken from Psalm 119, 21st Century King James Version of the Bible. The verses are the numbers at the end of each line. The line with asterisk (*) was rephrased.

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things [Philippians 4:8].

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Infant Steps: What are the Boundaries in Dating?

Dear EROLyrics Readers, hope you've had a great week so far. Thank you for your responses to the last post on the Infant Step Series.

Today, we have another question on this series. It is about boundaries in dating. I remember my mother telling me to keep my legs closed before marriage. I wondered if it was possible in this day and age. Emily's question here reminds me of the same questions I asked my mother when she gave me advice. Please read Emily's question and share with her your experience with boundaries while dating.

Dear Rita,
I am a born again Christian just starting my Christian walk. I have heard so much about avoiding sex before marriage. I have a few questions related to that. First of all, are there men out there who are willing to wait until the wedding day? Secondly, if I have had sex in the past, is it possible to stop?
Assuming I find a guy who is willing to wait, what are the boundaries while dating in terms of being physical? What can I do and what should I not do?

I truly look forward to your response. Thank you.

If you have any questions you would like to discuss on the Infant Steps Series, please drop me an email at or leave the question as a comment in any of my blog posts.

All posts on the Infant Steps Series will be posted on Tuesdays, 9 AM West Africa Time.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Infant Steps: What is a good prayer routine?

Dear EROLyrics Readers, hope your week has started beautifully.
We have another question on the Infant Steps Series. It is about a good prayer/studying pattern. How have you managed to keep communicating and growing in the knowledge of God through prayer? Please share your experience with Daniel on this one.

Dear Rita,
I am a young growing Christian and I really want to improve my communication with God. Many times I find out that I start praying and then I get distracted. The distraction starts by missing a day or procrastinating to a later time. Days and weeks pass and then I realize I have not been praying and studying the word of God.
What do I need to do to have a good prayer and bible- studying routine? Are there any tools that could help me with this? I really need your encouragement here. Thank you.

If you have any questions you would like to discuss on the Infant Steps Series, please drop me an email at or leave the question as a comment in any of my blog posts.

All posts on the Infant Steps Series will be posted on Tuesdays, 9 AM West Africa Time.

Friday, July 10, 2009

In This 2009, We Will...(4)

Samuel came from a poor family. Somehow, he managed to have financial support when he needed it. Little wonder he managed to get to University despite the fact that his family had little money. One very challenging period was when he was writing his project – a few months to graduation. There was no money to fund his project. Because of the miraculous provision he had received from God in the past, at the back of his mind, he believed God would come through for him as always.

Out of nowhere, the Nigerian Federal Government decided to give scholarships to selected students of the university. This had never been done before in the history of his stay in the university. He was shortlisted amongst 9 others from his department. Only 3 people from his department would eventually get the scholarship.

All 10 selected people wanted to know who will be among the 3 selected. In a classroom discussion, they suggested the possible criteria for selecting the 3: CGPA; State of Origin, Age, Gender, Relevance of Project topic, SSCE results, track record with scholarships… the list was endless. Samuel left the gathering as he meditated on the discussion. He realized he was not top 3 in any of the listed criteria. Sadly, he shut his heart to any possibility of receiving the scholarship.

To worsen it, 3 days later, a lecturer came to class and called the top 3 performers.
“You applied for the Federal Govt. Scholarship?” lecturer asked.
They replied affirmative.
“Please come to my office quickly...”
At that point, Samuel lost all hope. He spent his weekend feeling depressed, disappointed and sad. He shut off family and friends while he mourned the lost opportunity because of his apparent shortcomings.

A month later, when he had forgotten about the scholarship, a list of successful candidates for the scholarship was released. Samuel’s name was # 1 on the list from his department. None of the 3 top performers in class were in the list. When he asked the lecturer why they did not make it, he was told that they did not meet the criteria of the Federal Government (I wonder what their criteria were).

Recall that the purpose of the series “In this 2009, We will…” is to discuss a few things we will do this year to see the physical manifestation of what we desire. That means, it has already been given to us. We are yet to receive.
Samuel spent days worrying, crying, depressed, disappointed, and ignorant that what was his will always be his. His peace and joy were stolen (temporarily) because he had listened and meditated on things contrary to what God had promised him, even though he had past experiences to attest for the faithfulness of God.

In this 2009, We Will Guard our Hearts.

Keep your heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life [Proverbs 4:23].

The heart is your center – the very core of your being. The heart speaks about who you really are as a person. From out of the heart flows “the issues of life”, the heart “affects everything you do”.
The heart is the totality of your MIND (intellect), your EMOTIONS (feelings), and your WILL (choices).
To safeguard your heart means to protect your mind; preserve your emotions; prop up your will.

Part of guarding your heart means confession of your sins, carefully inspecting what you let in and out of your heart and mind. What you watch, where you go, who your friends are, what you listen to, what you set your affections on, and your choices not based on feeling but on truth. Weeding out roots of bitterness, unforgiveness, disobedience, lust, immorality, gossip, and so many other things that seek to ensnare your heart. Knowing the truth is what will set us free from the deceitfulness of our own hearts.

In guarding your heart, you will keep your heart from doing hurt and getting hurt, from being defiled by sin and disturbed by trouble. You will keep your heart like it is a jewel (cherish and protect), and as a vineyard (pruned and healthy); keep a conscience void of offence; keep out bad thoughts; keep up good thoughts; keep the affections upon right objects and in due bounds.

Rather than letting negative words and thoughts replace the hope you have in God, guard your heart diligently and keep your mind stayed on Him.
You may hear of how many could not make it or how many were not successful or how many did not get something similar to which you desire. Do not change your confessions. Rather dare to trust God that your story will be different. He is God who can customize blessings and create opportunities that never existed before just because of you. His criteria for blessing you are beyond the ways and understanding of man.

May the ‘peace of God, which transcends all understanding….guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus’ [Phil 4:7] Amen.

For further reading on what it means to guard your heart, please refer to
Guard your heart above ALL things
Guard your heart
Guard your heart
For Previous posts in this series please visit
• In This 2009, We Will Pray For Others
• In this 2009, We Will Worship The Lord
• In this 2009, We Will Know God for Ourselves

Have a blessed weekend ahead.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Infant Steps: Is it wrong to go to nightclubs?

My Beloved EROLyrics Readers,

Thank you all for your responses to Bennie's questions. He is now going to a church near his home. He found out afterall that the church was not bad. Yesterday he came to tell me how blessed he's been by the gathering and the people he met.

Welcome to a new and blessed week. For the Infant Steps Series, I have a question from Christine about "clubbing".

Is it right or is it wrong? Please read her question below and give your take on it.

Dear Rita,

Some of my Christian friends find it repulsive when I go to clubs. I am a sociable person and I enjoy attending parties. Is it wrong to go to nightclubs? My intentions of going to clubs are to dance and have a good time, not to look for or hang out with men. Most times, I am invited by very close friends whom I do not want to disappoint.

I truly appreciate your candid opinion here.

Thank you,

*Something I forgot to mention, Christine is a born again Christian.