GOD BELIEVES IN YOU

One day, I caught my now four-year-old son playing with his toy car in bed when he should’ve been sleeping. I asked him to give me his toy and he did, albeit reluctantly. I reminded him that it was late and he needed to go to sleep because he had school in the morning. Then I put his toy at the end of his bed and turned to leave. Chap couldn’t believe his luck. “Haha – I will get it when you go!” he said while smiling at me. “I know you can, but I hope you won’t. It’s time to sleep. Good night, son.”

I closed the door and waited outside for a minute. Then I opened the door a crack to see if he had caved into temptation. He hadn’t. His head was still on the pillow and the book was untouched. “Good boy,” I said to myself.

The most astonishing discovery in the gospel is that Almighty God, the Maker of Heaven and Earth, has faith in us. He trusts us. He gives us the freedom to choose, encourages us to “Choose life,” and then lets us decide. This explains the tree in the garden of Eden. The forbidden tree was not an obedience test, as in, fail the test and God will punish you. The forbidden tree was an opportunity to trust God. Tragically, we didn’t and we paid a price. But God, good Father that he is, didn’t wash his hands of us. He didn’t say, “What a bunch of screw-ups. They’re no kids of mine.” Instead, he made things right, indeed, even better than before, because he still believes in us, he still thinks the best of us, and he longs for us to trust him back.

Is this not the greatest untold story of human history? Think about it. In the beginning God makes a world, perfect in every way, and then he gives us his beautiful, shiny planet.

The highest heavens belong to the Lord, but the earth he has given to man. (Psalms 115:16)

You might say it was a reckless gamble, but I say it was an audacious act of love and trust, like when a father hands his daughter the keys to his brand new car and says, “Go have fun!”

What is man that you are mindful of him? … You made him ruler over the works of your hands. (Psalms 8:4,6)

God gave us the car-keys to planet earth and basically said, “Have fun!” True, we responded by crashing the car. But don’t miss the bigger point: Knowing what we would do, and knowing how much it would cost him to repair the damage, God went ahead and did it anyway. Why? Because he loves us and believes in us and hopes that one day we will stop running and come home.

God believes in you!

You won’t hear this message from man made religion. Instead you will be asked, “Do you believe in God?” And if you hesitate to answer, religion will try to manipulate you with carrots and sticks. “If you believe, you’ll be blessed. If you don’t, you’ll burn!”

This is not love. Love makes no threats, and “love doesn’t force itself on others” (1 Cor. 13:5, MSG). Nor does this reveal the One who said, “You did not choose me, but I chose you” (John 15:16).

A back-to-front gospel says, “Believe in God or pay the price.” But the gospel of grace declares, “God believes in you.” This is the stunning revelation that sets us free from the prison of loneliness and distrust.

That night it would’ve been the easiest thing for me to take my boy’s toy by force and put it where he couldn’t reach it. I could coerce him into doing the right thing because I’m stronger than him. And if he were a strapping teenager I could control him through carrots and sticks. I could make him do what I wanted with harsh words and threats. “Under my roof, you’ll do what I say!” But what kind of mother would I be if I did that? And what kind of son would he be? He wouldn’t be a son but a slave. And since we were not made to be slaves he’d eventually run away. I don’t want to relate to my son through power or the fear of punishment. I want to relate to him through love. How do I do that? By giving him freedom to resist me, and then loving him no matter what.

It’s the same with our heavenly Father.

The Almighty is stronger than you or I and it would be the easiest thing in the world for him to make us do whatever he liked. It would be no trouble at all. But that’s not how love works. Love doesn’t seek to control or coerce. Love yields, and the greater the yielding, the greater the love.

God longs for you!

This is the surprising announcement of the gospel. Despite all our mistakes and foolishness, our Father holds nothing against us. He waits by the gate for us to come home so he can clothe us and throw a party that is so outrageously good fun that religious kill-joys are scandalized by it. Perhaps you’ve heard the old joke about the nun and the atheist. The atheist says, “I don’t believe in God,” and the nun replies, “But God believes in you.” This is no joke; this is the gospel truth that penetrates the unbelieving heart. God isn’t shaking his fist at you. He loves you and wants to be with you. We love Him because he first loved us, and we trust because he first trusted us. That’s the biblical pattern. God acts; we respond. The reason some people have trouble trusting is they don’t see God with outstretched arms but with clenched fists. Religion has taught them to fear his punishment. Such folk need to hear the good news of his grace. They need to hear how much their Daddy loves them and wants nothing but the best for them.

Everything that God has ever done testifies to his love for us. The Garden, the tree, the cross – he did it all because he loves us and believes in us and is not willing that any of us should perish. His enduring hope is that we will stop doubting his intentions and trust him back.

And when that happens – when we stand firm in the confidence of our Father’s love – life truly begins!

Be encouraged!

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Must they try so hard with you?

God has a beautiful way of teaching us. All it usually takes is for you to listen a little longer and probably look for lessons where you do not expect to find any. I happened to chance upon a certain scripture that got my mind reeling to a direction I did not see coming.

The Bible says in Romans 8:31-39

31 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? 32 Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else? 33 Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one—for God himself has given us right standing with himself. 34 Who then will condemn us? No one—for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us. 35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? 36 (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake, we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.” 37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us. 38 And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. 39 No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

While I read this, a number of things crossed my mind. The question is; when you see people while you go about with your daily life, have you asked yourself just how you deal with them? Have you perhaps asked yourself how you make them feel? Now, you are going to bear with me because I am going to address this on a personal level. I am not going to look at how “they” treat you or make you feel. This is because I am looking at this scripture through the very eyes of God and boy!

You see, the Bible has told us that no angels, demons, fears for today, worries for tomorrow etc can separate us from the love of God. And I am thinking, okay!

Genesis 1:26 Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us. They will reign over the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the livestock, all the wild animals on the earth, and the small animals that scurry along the ground.”

God intended to make us into His very own image. What a beautiful honor! That practically means we are just like Him in each and every way. We think, talk, act just as He does. And because we are like Him, people around us can easily tell when we are being like him and when we are being different from him.  I have noticed that every little time I spend with God in communion, he makes me feel a certain way. Usually, my heart will want to skip like a gazelle in a field full of grass. He makes me feel like a fat kid that has just been served cake. He makes me want to dance a certain way. All because He has made it clear to me that I do not have to behave or act a certain way with Him. As far as He is concerned, I am his baby girl and He is my daddy. We are best friends and we talk just about anything.

So while I was thinking about this, God asked me a question. “Do other people feel the same way with you, like you feel while with me?” While I did not pay attention to it at first, I found myself deep in thought later. I was at a place in my life where I felt like people have to behave a certain way with me. They had to treat, talk and address me address me in the way that I wanted. If they did not do so, I would make them feel like they could not be in my circles! And because of that, I ended up missing out on having fellowship with them and probably winning souls to the Lord. The devil is a liar!

Child of God, if God is not having you try so hard to keep your relationship with Him, why do you make others feel like they must be a certain way to be in your circles? I have seen people who assume that because so and so drinks beer, goes to a dance club, works at a certain place they cannot be seen relating with them They think they cannot relate with people who come from a certain walk of life. In other words, they are too good for life. But the Bible says in Luke 9:7-7 5

When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” 6 So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly 7 All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”

It is a sad truth that we have Christians who think that just because I advised so and so to stop doing something and they are still doing it then I am done with them. This is the exact way the devil wants us to be with people. We push them away. Pushing people away takes many forms. It might be verbal or physical or aggressive, or, just as destructively, shutting them out emotionally.

What happened to believing in people? The exact way you want God to be patient with you as you go about life is the same way He expects you to extend grace to others. So what if you told her not to take a certain decision and she did? If you walk away from her what does it benefit you or the kingdom of God? Child of God, you do not meet people for naught. Every person you meet has a reason as to why they have crossed your path. They may be dirty, talkative, clingy and all that but the reason God has allowed them your way is simply that he is confident you can do something in their lives. If you meet someone and notice that they have a flaw, it is most likely because God wants you to love them out of it and not become a Judge Judy.

You see, love never fails. So, if you employ love in everything you do, you will not fail. In other words, you will always win. It’s the power of Love. Coolest thing about love winning is that it usually wins for both sides. Glory to God! Jesus commanded us to love one another. But he takes it one step further than just telling us to love one another. He says this:

My command is this: love each other AS I HAVE LOVED YOU. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for his friends. – John 15:12-13

Jesus says to love like He loved. Now, while that certainly clears things up for us, it also makes things difficult for us. Jesus’ love was serious business. His love was the lay-down-your-life kind of love. Jesus really loved people. He didn’t pretend to love people to get brownie points or to elevate Himself. He simply loved people. So many times throughout the gospels we see Jesus being moved with compassion like we shall see in the case of Lazarus.

The Bible says in  Luke 9:8-10

But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.” 9 Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

You do not have to play the Tit-For-Tat game. Jesus chose to love Lazarus when nobody else could. He chose to go and sit in his corruption infested house. And at the end of the day, he won Lazarus to the kingdom. Child of God, your life is not about you. You have been put on the earth to live for the people you were called for. You were not called for your comfort man of God. You were not called for your comfort woman of God. That very person that you cannot stand is the very person that needs you most. They may proud and haughty but the mere fact that it riles you up should be enough reason to give you the assurance that God has given you the grace to see them into the kingdom.

In the Bible, Jesus called the Pharisees whitewashed grave tombs, yet he spoke gently to the woman at the well who had had five husbands and was presently living in sin. Jesus turned over the money-changers tables in the temple and used a whip of cords to drive them out, yet he forgave the thief on the cross and ate dinner with a crooked tax collector. Jesus called the religious leaders children of the devil, but received the little children and said, “of such is the kingdom of heaven.” And in the book of Revelation, in the letters written to the churches there, He calls some wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked, but then gently urges them to answer the door of their heart, of which He has been knocking. Our God may be ‘gentle and lowly in heart,’ but He is also a ‘consuming fire.’ Those who have hardened their hearts should fear for His wrath is great, but those who are broken before Him should be reassured – He will not leave them, nor forsake them.

That means that as a child of God, you are not called to make people feel like they must first do something to be accepted into your life. If it is you that always pays the bill, calls, texts, goes the extra mile, as long as you are able to do so just do it. While you do so, God will deal with that person. If we want to love others or receive love at all, we must open up ourselves to being okay with getting hurt. This is where I got it wrong for so long. I shut people out in response to hurt I had experienced for so long. But, God created us to love lavishly in order to better know him. Anything else is less than what he has in store for you.

We are called to love people regardless of their flaws. We are called to believe in them. We are called into friendships, and into relationships, because every single person can teach us about the character of God, regardless of their flaws. And, consequently, when we get hurt, our relationships remind us there is only one perfect love, and we are called to seek after him above all other loves. See, God’s love will never fail us- unlike our friends, family, or spouses. God’s love is perfect. This is why the Bible says that “perfect love casts out all fear.” No other love can do this. But, when we are in relationship with God, knowing that perfect love personally, then we can love others fearlessly.

We can love others because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19. We cannot fully love ourselves or others if we do not first recognize how much God loves us. Literally to death and that’s a big deal. You’re deeply loved. Walk in that truth. Be fearless in your love of people. Pursue people wholeheartedly. Reflect the love of God that is fearless and bold, and find your identity in that perfect love. Not in anyone else’s. I can assure you, it’s not as good and that kind of love is only temporary.

When we walk in the spirit, the love of God is there for us to walk in, as well. When we walk in it we will always win. We will win for ourselves. We will win for others. We will win for Jesus.

If you are perhaps in the very category of those that feel they have been pushed away by loved ones, allow me to say this to you;

I don’t care who you are or what mistakes you have made in life. You are worth so much more than the things you have done. You are highly prized and loved. You are an amazing person. You are beautiful. You are handsome. You are worth love. Do not allow let the ugliness of the words that have been spoken to or about you darken your heart or conquer your self-esteem. I love you and I believe in You. You are worthy of being treated kindly.  

 

Be encouraged

THE SUFFICIENCY IS OF GOD

Are you satisfied with your life? What I mean is this: Are you content? Are you happy with what you have been given? Or are you the kind of person who is constantly searching – moving from one activity under heaven to another? It is necessary for us to ask such searching questions because, unfortunately, we live in a world that teaches us to be unhappy, discontented people. Our culture promotes that idea. “God wants me to be happy!” Many people exclaim. And it’s true. God wants us to be satisfied. But so many of us are tempted to find happiness and satisfaction on our own terms.

Human philosophy on life sums it all up by saying that whether it’s food, cars, cash, jewelry, or anything else, the consistent message is: “you have the right to own this. You’re entitled to possess that.”

We live in a world of instant self-gratification, and that idea has seeped into the church. Such thinking sets people up for a fall. When we have expectations of the kind of life we feel we deserve, then what happens when things don’t the way we expect? We feel betrayed, that somehow God has let us down.

This is why the Holy Spirit led Paul to record these words in 2 Corinthians. The apostle Paul takes us back to the basics of what we truly deserve and what we can expect from God. And so to a world filled with selfish hearts, Paul proclaims: GOD’S GRACE IS SUFFICIENT. He explains this for us in a most personal way. He tells us that God’s grace is plenty: even when we sticks us with a thorn and the reason for this is that God, in his grace provides strength in weakness.

Apostle Paul describes this weakness as a “messenger of Satan.” Now, we might wonder how that can be since Paul admits that God is the one who gave him this problem. What we have here is a hint of God’s all-surpassing power, even in the face of evil. Satan is bent on bringing down the Christian Church. He will stop at nothing to try and destroy our faith in Jesus, our Savior. He will even try to use the problems of this life to accomplish such a task. But God is bigger than the devil. And in the hands of our almighty God even big, scary Satan is nothing more than an unwitting tool. Satan would have seen this “thorn” as a way to bring suffering on Paul and to break down his hope in Christ, but God used it to accomplish his good purpose of keeping Paul humble in his faith.

Realize the apostle Paul had been granted an unusual gift from God. The Lord had given Paul visions of paradise in heaven. And so, to keep Paul from becoming puffed up with arrogance – thinking he was better than those who didn’t receive such visions – God gave him an affliction that would constantly remind the apostle that we was still a weak sinner, completely dependent on God’s grace.

This was no accident; God gave this ailment to the apostle. This happened to Paul, not because he was outside of God’s will, but because he was in it. This happened to Paul in order to mold his character, to make him more and more holy – living more and more as a child of God. Don’t be deceived by the world or by your own ideals. If you live for Christ it isn’t going to be a cakewalk. We will experience very difficult times. We will experience trials, and hardships, just like every other person on earth. But we cannot believe the misconception of the world, that true happiness is found in getting what you feel you deserve.

We deserve to be forsaken and rejected by God, but God’s grace has promised us that we are his children who have an everlasting home with him in the realm of his inexpressible glory. God has declared us to be holy – pure and innocent in his eyes. And in order to keep us holy, he will humble us, too. We are not guaranteed earthly happiness the moment we put on Christ through the waters of baptism. Life is always going to have its hardships. St. Paul understood this. He knew all about suffering, and we too can learn from Paul.

God will place a “thorn” or two under our skin. A thorn in the flesh in modern terms might be called “a pain in the neck.” God’s thorns come in all shapes and sizes: migraine headaches, bad backs, arthritis, depression, anxiety spells, cancer, an impossible boss, a rebellious child, and on and on. Though thorns vary in length and severity, most of us have at least one at any given time. God’s thorn might cause pain or frustration, but the whole purpose is to keep us from relying on ourselves and becoming arrogant, proud people. We would begin to think that we are perfect. We’d begin to rely on ourselves, thinking that our salvation depends on how we feel about ourselves. What happens is that we would become self-righteous, thinking that we deserve God’s love, and that deserve to be spared of this or that.

Sometimes, we Christians fail to understand or accept that truth. We feel that our faith is as strong as it will get and that we don’t need to grow in our understanding of God’s Word. There are times when we feel that we don’t really need God as much, as if we can get by on our own. But then comes the adversity. We get sick, financial problems set in, or family struggles flare up. We experience hardship and pain. And we’re quick to turn to God and demand that he remove such discomforts from our lives, as if we know better.

Paul prayed three times that his thorn would be taken from him, and God answered saying, “No, I will not take away your thorn. My grace is sufficient for you, Paul.” God allows hardships to enter our lives so that he can keep us humble, and, sometimes he’ll say, “no” to our prayer requests, too. This is God’s way of showing us just how much we need his grace. We will never be perfect while in the flesh. In fact, that is why God often gives us thorns, to show us the power of his grace. It is made perfect in our weakness. When we are weak, when we have trials, when the ailments of life tear us down, it becomes obvious just how much we need God, and his grace shines.

There’s a story about a young man who lived at the turn of the last century. His name was Clarence. One day he took his girlfriend on a summer outing. They brought a picnic lunch out to a picturesque island in the middle of a small lake. She wore a long dress with about a dozen petticoats. He was dressed in a fine suit with a high collar. Clarence rowed them out to the island, dragged the boat onto shore, and spread their picnic beneath a shade tree. He was so hypnotized by her beauty that he hardly noticed the hot sun and sweat on his brow. Softly she whispered to him, “Clarence, you forgot the ice cream.”

Clarence pulled the boat back to the water and rowed to shore. He found a grocery store nearby, bought the ice cream, and rowed back to the island. She batted long eyelashes over deep blue eyes and purred, “Clarence, you forgot the chocolate syrup.”

Love will make a person do strange things. Clarence got back into that boat and returned to the store for syrup. As he rowed back toward the island, suddenly he stopped. He sat there in the boat the rest of the afternoon, fascinated by an idea. By the end of that afternoon, Clarence Evinrude had invented the outboard motor

Clarence Evinrude illustrates the point Paul teaches us: God will hand us problems, so that he can force it to pay dividends in our lives. If God gives you a thorn he won’t remove, then he will make it produce a rose. And the rose God wants to produce is a greater trust and reliance in our Savior Jesus, who has freed us from sin and is, at this moment, controlling all things in the universe, even our problems and pains, in preparation for our great home-coming in heaven.

So, what is your thorn? What person, situation, or illness is chaffing against you? Those hardships are there in your life because God allowed them and is proof that he’ working in your life. God’s not trying to make you miserable, or trying to push you away from him, but he is using that struggle as a way to lead you closer to him in faith. Thank God for his thorns! They remind us that we are weak. And when we know we are weak, then we can be strong because we grow to trust God’s all-sufficient grace shown to us in Christ.

Be encouraged.

 

In a split of a second

Hello! It has been quite a while!

Over the past few weeks, God has been teaching me about his sovereignty. The fact that he can change a life in a split of a second. God is not like a man that has to first plan to surprise you. I have a church family we called Life Above and what we often do is prepare to surprise each other on our birthdays, wedding showers and sometimes just dinner. We plan this overtime and the culprit usually gets too emotional on the day we execute our plan.  While this is really sweet, God has a better way. He does not need to have a board meeting with anyone to turn your life around. he is God. he will just tap his finger and things happen. The magicians always say “Abracadabra” and magic happens. Well, later on, their magic falls off. God is not a magician. God is God. he can turn your life around in a split of a second. Let us get into the word.

“Mordecai had a cousin named Hadassah, whom he had brought up because she had neither father nor mother. This young woman, who was also known as Esther, had a lovely figure and was beautiful. Mordecai had taken her as his own daughter when her father and mother died.” (Esther 2:7)

“Now when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai, who had taken her for his daughter, was come to go in unto the king, she required nothing but what Hegai the king’s chamberlain, the keeper of the women, appointed. And Esther obtained favour in the sight of all them that looked upon her. So Esther was taken unto king Ahasuerus into his house royal in the tenth month, which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign. And the king loved Esther above all the women, and she obtained grace and favour in his sight more than all the virgins; so that he set the royal crown upon her head, and made her queen instead of Vashti.” (Esther 2:15-17)

The story of Esther is really interesting. One minute she was just an orphan girl, staying with her guardian and the next minute she was a queen. Boy! You gotta love God. When I read the entire story of this village girl, all I could think of was how God does not need anyone’s help to change your life.

I remember an incident in my life where I was stuck today and the next day God came through in a strange way. Shortly after I gave birth to my son I realized I needed a job since I had lost the one I had after I got pregnant. Life got really tough and I was at the end of my tether. During that time I would share lots of poetry on my facebook page and sometimes share insightful posts. Little did I know that God was working out something on the sidelines. A certain woman was watching me. On my birthday that year, she came into my mailbox and told me, “Patience. I have been watching you for a while. I am persuaded that you are a very intelligent woman. I need an Administrator at my company and I am sure you are the person to fill that space.”

One minute I was jobless, the next day I was signing an appointment letter for a very good job with a very good salary. This is a job I did not look for. I did not apply for it. I did not qualify for it. My boss needed a Degree holder and I had a diploma. I did no interviews for it. I just showed up and was introduced to my workmates. I still marvel at this incident. It sealed it in my spirit that God can do anything, anytime. Impossibilities are the platforms upon which God does His best work. It is very important to have faith. With a man, it may be impossible. But with God, all things are possible.

Faith does not operate in the realm of the possible. There is no glory for God in that which is humanly possible. Faith begins where man’s power ends. Are you facing a seemingly impossible situation? Is what you’re asking God for seem unlikely to come to pass? Is your faith being tested? Perhaps, you feel completely trapped, hedged in and overwhelmed, with no solution in sight. Maybe you’re confronted with a challenge where there is no resolution. Or, your heart is heavy with doubt as you can’t figure out what to do next, for there appears to be nothing you can do about what you now face. On an emotional rollercoaster, you could be wondering, “How can things change for the better?”

I have read about men and women of old in the Bible whose lives God changed in a split of a second. One day, David was out tending his father’s sheep in the wilderness. He was that one child that nobody really minded about. He was the one that everyone always thought about last. One day, a seer shows up at his father’s house and before anybody could bat an eye, he was being anointed the King of Israel. We see Mary, a simple woman that had just met her sweetheart. They were probably going to get married in a simple setting and go home to make babies. Before she knew it, an angel tells her she would be the one to mother the saviour of the world. And just like that, her life totally changed.

There are very many more incidences in the Bible that we can all relate to. But one thing is sure, God can change your life. I understand you when you say you have waited too long and you see no sign of a change. I dare you to try again. I dare you to look again and keep hope alive. Keep your faith alive. God is not asleep. The Bible says in 1Kings 18: 43-44

“Go and look toward the sea,” he said to his servant. So the servant went and looked, and he said, “There is nothing there.” Seven times Elijah said, “Go back.” And it came to pass at the seventh time, that he said, Behold, there ariseth a little cloud out of the sea, like a man’s hand. And he said, Go up, say unto Ahab, Prepare thy chariot, and get thee down that the rain stops thee not.

Elijah’s servant must have been really wary of trying to look for whatever it was the man of God was asking him to look for. I can imagine him searching for things he clearly had no hope of seeing but well, he kept looking back. And the seventh time he saw! Child of God, if you fail today, wake up and try tomorrow. I have told myself that no matter what happens, I’ll try today, I’ll try next week, next month, next year, five years and thirty years later. I will keep the faith. Because it is settled in my Spirit that what God started in my life, he will accomplish. When scripture says in Isaiah 34:16

“Seek ye out of the book of the Lord, and read: no one of these shall fail, none shall want her mate: for my mouth, it hath commanded, and his spirit it hath gathered them.”

Child of God, if he said you won’t lack a mate, why do you get restless because all your friends are getting married? Why do you feel envious when your friend says their hubby found them? God can do anything in a split of a second. If you are sure you heard God say that you will get married in a specific season, hold onto that word. Even if it is just a week or hours to the end of that season, hold onto that word. God can do anything in a space of an hour. God is God. he is not a son of man that he should lie. Trust God even though things don’t make complete sense to you at the moment. Seek God sincerely in prayer. Keep hoping, keep believing, and keep persisting. There is no obstacle that is too big for God to turn around for your great good. God can change impossible situations. He sometimes moves mysteriously but will provide what you need in miraculous ways. And it is going to be far better than you can ever imagine.

Today, no matter what challenge you’re encountering, do not be afraid, stand firm and go forward. You have come too far to back down and quit. Trust God, as He is the omnipotent One. “God will guide you continually,” (Isaiah 58:11). So, “Don’t be anxious about anything” (Philippians 4:6), “God is your strength and power,” (2 Samuel 22:33). For God promised to “repay two blessings for each of your troubles.” (Zechariah 9:12) God will successfully execute what you can’t. Nothing is impossible with Him.

 

Goodness and Mercy

The Lord has a way of bringing out His heart to us in the most beautiful ways. He will whisper anything into your ear and whether or not you hear purely depends on how you relate with Him. One a beautiful morning, I opened my ears and the first thing I did was to play music on my phone. Well, music has a way it gives my spirit a shift. On that particular day a song was playing and while I listened, God led me to read the 23rd Psalm.

While I read it, he caused my eyes to stop on the 6th verse. The Bible said, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.” (Psalm 26:30

You see, many of us confess this scripture but when you do what comes into your mind? The night before I read that scripture, I had just received news that my mother was unwell. I had thanked God for her health and slept off. But there was still this bit of me that was still sad. As I read that scripture many things came into my mind. I would love to share a few with you.

The Bible says that goodness and mercy shall follow you. It does not say that folly and lack, sickness and pain, shame and sorrow, disgrace and suffering or tears and wounds shall follow you. It says GOODNESS AND MERCY SHALL FOLLOW YOU. So why do you keep saying “My ulcers are so bad,  My husband is a loss, My boss is so weird etc”  The Bible does not say any of those things. So it does not and will never matter how it looks to you. The Bible only highlights two things that can follow you.

GOODNESS AND MERCY. Yes, you have terrible ulcers but the goodness and mercy of the Lord heal you. Yes, you lost your job and you are the only person your family is looking up to. It is okay. the goodness and mercy of the Lord uphold and provide for you. Yes, you have lost your best friend. The goodness and mercy of the Lord uphold you. Yes, your husband beats you every day, but the goodness and mercy of the Lord uphold you. Dear single mother, I know of the days you have watched your little one cry for milk and bread when you could not afford it then, but the goodness and mercy f the Lord uphold you. Yes, the man you love has walked away from you, but the goodness and mercy fo the Lord uphold you. Yes, your business is on the verge of collapse but the goodness and mercy of the Lord uphold you

There is never a day that you will walk alone. The goodness and mercy of the Lord will always follow and pursue you relentlessly. The Bible does not say they will follow you today and go. No. It says they will follow you all the days of your life. They will follow you when it rains and when it shines. They will follow you when it floods and when it is dry. They will follow you when people love you and when they do not. They will follow you when you have all you need and when you are on the last penny. The goodness and mercy of God will follow you ALL THE DAYS OF YOUR LIFE.

I love the last bit of this scripture. David sums it up by saying “SURELY, I WILL DWELL IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD FOREVER.”

Child of God, let nothing in your life be bad enough to drive you out of the presence. Yes, the doctor has said you have stage 4 cancer. It is okay. That is the fact. The truth is that SURELY, YOU WILL DWELL IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD, NOT IN THE CANCER WARD. Yes, you have lost your job, your husband has left, you have been molested, you have been raped, you have been taken granted of and every bad thing you can think of. But it is okay. Those are not your portion. The Bible does not say you will dwell in jail, hospital, prisons, debts, depression, lack or loneliness. The Bible says that SURELY, YOU WILL DWELL IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD.

Yes, you have that brother that is so hooked and addicted to alcohol and drugs. Just love and pray for him. The Bible does not say that he will dwell in alcohol and drugs forever. It says that SURELY, HE WILL DWELL IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD. Yes, you have believed to see your family get born again and have not got results yet. Worry not, the Bible does not say they will dwell in darkness. Th Bible says SURELY, THEY WILL DWELL IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD FOREVER.

What a beautiful assurance this is! To know that regardless of whatever happens God has got us in His hands and that we are never alone! I pray for you this day, that you will smile through whatever storm assails your life in this season. God loves you and will always be there for you.

Be encouraged!

 

Out of the abundance of their hearts

Growing up, I have often heard people confess that Jesus Christ is their personal Lord and Savior. While this may be a beautiful thing, if you happen to delve deeper into their lives you will get to realize that their confession is so far from reality.

The Bible says, “That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His suffering being made conformable unto His death……” (Philippians 3:10).

While I meditated on this scripture, I kept asking myself if I really knew God personally. The latest trend in Church is that many of us just wait for fellowship time to experience God. Some of us wait for Sunday or Friday overnights to come, then we start to talk to God. We go to church excited and expectant of the pastor’s sermon for that day.

While it is not a bad thing to be excited about the sermon, it is even more important to know that EVERY TIME YOU SIT IN THE CONGREGATION, YOU ARE DRAWING OUT THE ABUNDANCE OF YOUR PASTOR’S SPIRIT. He actually took time to commune with God in the secret of his home. He got filled and lavished by the spirit of God.

When he steps out of his house all you will see is the glory resting on a man that knows His God. Child of God, when he preaches that sermon it will hit you so hard and you will be so blessed. Yes, it will change your life. But until when will you allow others to know God for you? Until when will you keep seeing God through the eyes of other people? Until when will you keep hearing other people recount their experiences in God?

God desires you to know Him personally. The Bible says, “…For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the Lord: I will put my laws into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people…” (Hebrews 8:10)

God looks at you as his person. He loves you personally. Each day of your life He is watching over you in a special way. He knows you so much that even the number of hairs on your head is not a mystery to him. He knows when you cry and laugh. He knows when you desire to be loved and sends the right people your way. He knows when you need to be comforted. It is why He says he will be your God.

Well, He has been, will be and will always be your God. But come to think about this. While He knows you that much, how much of Him do you know? You have heard that He is a loving God, how much of His love have you experienced? How much of His joy, provision, protection have you experienced?

Do you only know Him by the stories you have heard about him? Is it from the Sunday service testimonies you hear at church? When you lift up your hands to worship God, from whence does your worship come? Is it just a song you sing? When the words say “…I am a friend of God..” are you really His friend? When the words say’ “…You are a good father..” have you seen and experienced the Father in Him? Child of God, purpose to know your God intimately.

No one will know or get to experience Him for you. You only do this by setting apart time to relate with him on a daily. You become His friend. You do all it takes to know Him through His word. Before you step out each day, allow yourself to sit alone with God and let him fill your tank. That way, you get to fill others when you get out there. Do not wait for people to quote you scriptures and testimonies.

The Bible says, “…Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me….” (Revelation 3:20)

When you let Him in, you are practically saying “Lord I need to know You more. Then He abides with you. What a beautiful privilege to have to dine with the Lord each day and pick nuggets off his table! To just sit and take in all the wisdom that he carries inside Him! To just behold and see the creator of the universe tell you ancient secrets!

I have come to prove that there is absolutely nothing that beats having a personal relationship with God. Even while in a congregation of thousands, while others worship, you will worship a certain way. While the pastor gives that sermon on His love, it will affect you a certain way because you have a clear idea of this love, you have experienced it. While others give, you will give a certain way. Not because of any other reason but because you know How much He has given you.

The Bible says.“….He that believes on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water…..” (John 7:38)

Child of God, what do you carry in your heat? What sits in your spirit? When you speak, what flows out of you? Does it still surprise you that you are so attached to men and women of God that preach or worship a certain way? They know their God in a certain way. And they reach out to you from the abundance of their hearts.

How much of this abundance do you carry in your Spirit? Will you purpose to know Him personally today? He waits. He waits for You. Happy bonding with the lover of your soul. He loves you.

He That Called You Is Faithful

Over the last three weeks, I have had the opportunity to speak to a number of people and 5/10 kept on telling me just how much they felt they have been judged by their peers or loved ones.

In my Christian walk, there have been days when i messed up real bad. One of those times was when i got pregnant and had to ensure i kept my son. I remember many of my friends walking away from me. Some of their parents actually told them not to associate with me because i was a “bad girl”

This was too much for my young mind and i remember breaking down into tears while i sat in my room at home. My elder sister came and hugged me and she told me “Peshy, those who love you will stay no matter what…”

This morning the Lord led me to a scripture

1 Thessalonians 5:24 “The one who calls you is faithful, and he will continue to be faithful.”

Years later, i look back and i can only testify of a scripture that has proven to be very true in my life. And it is my basis of sharing today.

Philippians 1:6 “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ”

At that time i never could have seen ahead of where i was. All i could see was how much i had fallen and let my family down. But overtime, I realized that whenever i prayed God would still hear me. I had been branded the worst sinner but God was still hearing and speaking to me, all the while comforting and breathing life into me. He was not done with me.

As time dragged on, i had my son and GOD KEPT ON DEALING WITH ME. He kept teaching me and molding me, He kept transforming me. He stayed my very best friend and to this day, I can look back at how much God has changed  and transformed me. I do hear him more than i did years ago.

In life, people are really so quick to judge others. You will hear them say that “how could so and so do that?” I find this to be an error because while we all still sit in our mortal bodies, one way or the other we may stray off the path. But God in his infinite mercy and grace still loves and believes in us

I have looked at the life of David. He was an adulterer, a murderer and a schemer at that. But God still called him a man after His own heart. I have looked at Samson that went off his path because of a woman and he lost God along the way. It is written that his enemies gloated over him and took out his eyes and had him slave away for them, But while he slaved away in a dungeon, God was restoring him. His enemies were too blinded to notice. Scripture says that Samson killed more of His enemies than he did while he lived.

I have looked at Jonah running away from God and getting swallowed by a whale, but even in the fish’s belly he spoke and God heard him and instructed the fish to vomit him on dry land. God loved Jonah too much. He could have let him drown or be eaten by the whale. God loved David too much. He could have decided to de-throne him and choose another King for Israel

God loved Saul too much. He could have decided to strike him dead and never use Him. I have looked at peter denying Christ thrice. In that instant, any human would just never speak to you again. But after the Lord resurrected, the women and the tomb are instructed to go and tell the disciples AND PETER that the Lord had resurrected.

Mark 16:7 “Now go and tell his disciples, including Peter, that Jesus is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you before he died.”

God is really amazing, He singled out Peter to show us that He still had a plan for Him and was going to be true to his word that he had spoken over Peter that he would build his church on him and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Mark 16:18 “Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it.”

We eventually get to see Peter spear head the early church movement and win many souls into the kingdom.

Child of God, people will talk after you error. They will think whatever they want. But you see, there’s something about God. He never gives up on us. He is the potter and we are the clay. And i’ ll tell you one thing for sure. “AS LONG A YOU ARE STILL ON THE POTTER’S WHEEL, YOU WILL FINISH WELL”

Many will write you off and judge you so harshly but God still loves and believes in you. THE ONE WHO CALLED YOU IS FAITHFUL. 

Rest in the knowledge that he is perfecting you each day. It is written that a man may fall seven times but then he will rise again. The error is in falling and refusing to get up because so and so said you are a failure. We are not the kind that draws back into perdition. Focus on your race. Keep your eye on the mark. You will finish well.

THE ONE WHO CALLED YOU IS FAITHFUL. EYAKUYITA MWESIGWA.

Love,

Peshy

Pregnant and Alone?

Somewhere in a locked room is a young woman that just found out that she is pregnant. She is not ready for this child. She is either in school or just graduated. She is either a church minister or a church goer. She is very scared. She is not sure how to break the news to her boyfriend because chances are high he may not be supportive. Somewhere out there is one that has been told by the man responsible that he cannot be part of “it” if she decides to keep the baby. Somewhere out there is one whose parents are so tough, she is afraid she will be thrown out of home. Somewhere out there is one that just realized that her baby daddy is actually married.

Today, my heart reaches out to any of these women. I would love to share my story with you. Wherever you are, i need you to know that God has your hand.

Close to five years ago, i met someone i will call “Jake” He was the kind you would call an eligible bachelor. In my eyes, he was the perfect knight in shining armor. I was a Christian girl even then but i was relating with Jake intimately. A few months later, i realized Jake was actually married. To say i was crushed emotionally is an understatement. After thinking it all through, i made up my mind to walk out of that relationship so i would not have to ruin another woman’s marriage. The sad bit was that after i walked out, i realized i was pregnant three days later.

I remember walking out of the laboratory and running home. I locked myself in my room and wept for hours. This was the last thing i wanted. I decided to let Jake know about the coming child but i did not get positive feedback or support.

Please note that i am not seeking to mud sling my child’s father. So i wont be sharing much about him here.

It is in that instant that i decided that i was going to have this child no matter what it took. I was on my own and had to act really fast. I was on the church worship team and i knew how much my pastor would be crushed with this news. But all the same, i scheduled an appointment with him and his wife i told them what had happened. I can never forget the painful look in his eyes. But again, I thank God that he chose to stand with me and cover me as his child. He told me “Peshy, This is really not good. But you are my daughter..i am with you all the way” To me, that was all i needed then. It gave me the courage to take in whatever happened after.

Later that evening i got home and sat both my parents down and told them what had happened. They had always believed in me a lot, they still do. But at that particular time i had just graduated and I am certain what they expected next was to see me walk down the aisle. Their dreams were crushed. I can never forget the look in their eyes that night. But i remember them embracing me and telling me that “It is okay, we shall stand with you Peshy”

Having informed the people that mattered in my life then, I had to face the world with all its harsh judgement. I remember being labeled all kinds of names. Some of my friends at church kept avoiding me like a plague. But I closed my ears to their jabs. Deep in my spirit i knew God still loved and adored me. I shut  my ears off any negative energy that was around me and purposed to love myself and wait on my child. Somehow i knew i was expecting a boy.

Things were not easy then. I lost friends, I lost my job and it really got tough in the first trimester considering that i was going through it all alone. At that time i would have loved it if Jake was present but i knew it was next to impossible. I went through every stage with the support of my family and my pastor with his wife. God surrounded me with a strong support network. I had my son 11 months later after a C-section and started out to raise him.

While I was pregnant, I sowed seeds for my son. I made a covenant with God and I was persuaded he was not an ordinary child. From the first day I laid hands on him, I saw greatness. I cannot really say it has been a smooth ride, it has been pretty tight. I have had days when i couldn’t afford to buy him what he needed. We have had days when he has badly wanted something and I could not give it to him then. There have been days when he asked for his dad and he was not available.

But amidst all that, God has been faithful. I named my son “Mwesigwa” and it was a prophetic name. God has been faithful to both of us. I would like to encourage the woman that may be in the exact place I found myself in years ago. It will not be easy, i am not going to lie to you that it will. But we have God. He is the father to the fatherless, he will help you raise that child.

Please do not consider abortion. Abortion does not “un-pregnant” you, it only makes you the mother of a dead child. Please keep that child. You will be amazed at the joy they will bring you after you hold them or look at them years later. I look at my son now and all I see is God. He makes me laugh, he cares so deeply about me, he is my best friend, he is my constant factor. Please keep that child, no matter how hard it gets. You will be glad you did.

I have seen people judge girls that get pregnant when they are not married. Well, it happens. But I need you to know that even in that state, God will always bring you people that will support and stand with you. They will cheer you on until you hold your child. They will walk with you every step of the way. God blessed me with people that have been there from day one to date. Try to steer clear of negative energy, surround yourself with people who care about you and the entire journey will not be as hard as you think it may be

Above all, develop a close knit relation ship with God. Trust me, there are days when you will feel so alone that even your support system may not be able to fill that gap. It is those moments that you will need God most. I had to teach myself that while i was the mother to my son, He was the father. The days i have felt overwhelmed, i always run to him and he embraces me. He tells me “it is okay” There have been days when I just broke down and cried watching my son in a sorry state, God held me then and whispered to me that He was in control. And it was enough to calm me and help me push on regardless of how bleak the day looked.

I do not want to  tell you imaginary tales. What I am sharing with  you is real. I have been there. I have seen God walk with me and fight for me all the way. I have seen Him anoint me with His oil of gladness and grant me beauty for ashes. I never thought then, that i could shine as bright again. But i have seen God cause me to shine, He has brought me to places i never thought i would go. My path shines bright and brighter unto the perfect day.

Back then , many thought I had backslid, but when I look back now..I realize I have grown much more spiritually and God is using me each day. He has given me friends that love me and my son. He has healed me of the bitterness and anger I had towards Jake. He has released my heart. I am a joyful person today because I let God take all this rubble up and make me a golden crown out of it. I am enjoying wearing this crown.

Woman of God, You will make it. Look not at men, look at the rock from which you were crafted. Look at your Savior, he made you and you belong to Him. Allow Him walk with you. He will perfect all that concerns you. He loves you, you are not and will never be alone.

God has got you. Yes,He has got you.

Love,

Peshy

Worship studio

Of late mini-me loves singing the song “this is the day that the Lord has made.. ”
In the prayer room he insisted on singing the song

ME: I am the one I am the one that the Lord has made…
MINI-ME : I am the three, I am the three….

Took me a while to understand what he meant..
Am still laughing….

Of late, we are learning to worship God. But I’ve learnt not to push him so that he gets to understand that worship is more of a relationship issue.
After praying he just put up his hands, and said mummy you learn my song

And then he started crooning…
“Mukama Mukama
Mukama Mukama.. ”
All the while waving with eyes closed
I could only join in..

And then it dawned on me that he has composed his first song..

Isn’t God awesome?

#RaisingKings

It is not about you

When we go through trials in our lives, especially the big ones, it is so easy to focus on ourselves and our loved ones who are affected by our trials or who may be going through them with us. We are often so overcome by our own pain and our own grief, that we fail to even try to see the big picture. We forget that we are but small parts of a great big world.

Yes, we are hurting. Yes, bad things are happening that directly affect us. But what we often fail to realize is that maybe the reason for our trials, the “why” behind it all, may actually have very little to do with us personally.

Look at the life, the example of Joseph. Joseph was beloved of his father and was kept from the hard work of the fields. He was kept close to home and taught to read and write, a luxury that was afforded very few young men of his stature back then.

He had ten brothers who were not given this opportunity. Instead, they were taught to tend the sheep and the fields, to do they manual labor that kept the family going. They were very jealous of Joseph and wanted rid of him. First, they threw him into a pit and left him to die. Then, they noticed some slave traders who were passing by. This made them re-think leaving Joseph in the pit. It gave them a better idea. They sold him to the slave traders and told their father that he had been killed by an animal.

I’m sure that Joseph felt the pain of abandonment and betrayal. He must have missed the parents that had loved him so very much. I know that he must have been afraid and unsure of his future. He probably felt angry that his brothers would do such a thing to him and confused that God would let them.
Do any of these emotions sound familiar?

Joseph’s story doesn’t end there. He was taken to the slave market in Egypt and purchased for the house of Potiphar, the captain of the Egyptian Guard. God Blessed Joseph there and soon he was put in charge of Potiphar’s entire house. He was doing pretty well, even though he was still serving as a slave.

Unfortunately, his trials were far from over.
Potiphar’s wife took an interest in Joseph and tried several times to entice him to commit adultery. When he refused and ran away, she became angry and cried rape. Joseph was promptly thrown in prison. It is unclear the length of time that he spent in prison, but the impression is that it was not a short stay.

I imagine that, once again, the feelings of abandonment, fear, anger and betrayal surfaced in Joseph. I know he must have asked the same question we all ask when times of severe trial come our way, “Why? Why is this happening to me? Why do I continue to face trials that seems so unfair? Why do I suffer for offenses that I did not commit? Why, God? Why do you allow these things to happen to me and those that I love? Why do you allow me and my loved ones to suffer when we have done no wrong?”

How many times have we felt those feelings and asked those very same questions? I know that I have, many, many times.
But then, as the story continues, we see God appear. We begin to see His plans unfold. Joseph was given the gift of interpreting dreams. He was given this gift by God to use for His purposes.

Pharaoh, King of Egypt was troubled by recurring dreams that no one had been able to explain to him. That’s when Joseph was remembered. He was brought from prison to visit Pharaoh. Joseph was able to explain his dreams to him and he gave all the glory to God. As it turned out, Pharaoh’s dreams were prophetic. God not only gave Joseph the interpretation of the dreams. He also gave him the wisdom to tell Pharaoh what must be done to save his kingdom from the famine that the dreams foretold. Joseph became the right hand of Pharaoh. The only person in the kingdom who outranked him was the king himself. Because of the gifts and the help of God, Joseph was able to save the lives of an entire kingdom.

Do you realize that, had Joseph not been sold by his brothers, bought by Potiphar and then thrown in prison (where his gift of interpreting dreams was discovered by the other prisoners, who eventually told Pharaoh), the whole kingdom of Egypt (and by extension, Joseph’s family) would have perished in a famine?

As it turned out, Joseph’s trials had absolutely nothing to do with him personally. It was all about God using him to save lives and to let the pagan Egyptians know that there is but one God, the God that Joseph trusted in and relied on, even through his undeserved trials. People were converted. Souls were saved. Lives were saved… through the undeserved and very, VERY hard trials of one man.

So why are you suffering? Why am I suffering? Maybe it’s nothing personal. Maybe the all powerful, all knowing God and creator of the world and all things in it has bigger plans. Maybe He is allowing us to suffer to accomplish a greater purpose. Maybe it’s nothing personal.
We have to trust that our LORD knows exactly what He is doing. After all, He sees the bigger picture. We are holding one tiny piece of a very big puzzle. He sees exactly where it fits and how it completes the whole.

We only see one piece. He is looking at the box top.
As we face our trials, even the biggest, hardest, most painful and life changing ones, let’s try to remember that this life, our lives, are not all about us. There’s a whole world full of people out there who need to see His Glory. Let’s let Him use us to reveal it to them, even when it hurts. In the end, we will be blessed and He will be glorified. That’s His promise.