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21Dec
A Healthy Approach To Prophecy
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I identify a lot with Amos who said in Amos 7:14 “But Amos replied, “I’m not a professional prophet, and I was never trained to be one. I’m just a shepherd, and I take care of sycamore-fig trees. But the Lord called me away from my flock and told me, ‘Go and prophesy to my people in Israel.’

I am a teacher of the Word. That’s my calling. God allows me the privilege to preach sometimes. He also allows me the privilege to prophesy sometimes. So I’m teaching mainly from the point of view of a receiver of the prophetic.

It’s that time of the year in Christendom where, rightly or wrongly so (that’s a conversation for another day), there’s all kinds of messages that go out in the form of prophecies about the next year.

I just thought it’ll be good to help you understand how to posture yourself in this season. If you approach prophecy, prophets & the prophetic wrong, you’re either bound to experience a lot of gas and no substance or you’ll miss out on what God has in store for you through an authentic expression of the prophetic gift.

So here’s what I’ve learned over the years, when it comes to the matter of prophecy, especially at this time of the year.

Prophetic words are declarations made in time, about what God has already completed before time began. In other words, a prophetic declaration does not necessarily create something new, it just helps you see what God has already created. All the prophetic words about the messiah did not create the messiah. The lamb of God had already been slain before the foundation of the earth (Revelation 13:8b) . The prophets were only declaring in time, that which was already completed outside of time.

Don’t give the prophet more credit than He/She is due. They are not God. They cannot create a better life for you. They can only help you see and articulate what God has already completed. They help you see what God intends to manifest in a season of your life. They bring light shining in darkness (2 Peter 1:19-21)

Prophetic words are not magic words that we sit back and expect to unfold like a good magic trick. They are given to help with the warfare of faith. If you don’t work the prophecy by believing it (faith) and conducting your life in the light that the prophecy brings (Works), you set yourself up for a shabby fight of faith. A fight that lacks precision. Wage a good war of faith with the prophetic word. (1 Timothy 1:18)

Even with the best of intentions, prophetic words can often come with flaws, because a perfect message communicated by an imperfect being is prone to be riddled with some error from the communicator. So don’t get so flattered that a word was brought to you that you swallow everything you heard. Check it with what God has been speaking to you.

By the way, don’t let it be the case that you only ever hear from God when someone brings you a prophetic word. That’s how you get susceptible to deception. Prophets and their ability to prophesy are gifts from God to you. Since we still have the flesh, our communication channel can be clogged with all sorts.

The gift of prophecy helps with that problem. The gift of prophecy should confirm something that you’ve already been processing in your personal time with God. If you don’t utilise this privilege of direct access to God, you will fall prey to charlatans in the guise of prophets. (1 John 2:20)

Seeing as you have direct access to God for yourself, this should eliminate the need for you to approach prophetic words suspiciously. Walking in Love is believing the best upfront whilst trusting God with any possible disappointments that come with having that posture. The best of everything God has for you comes through, when you’re in a posture of love. Don’t miss out on the gift that God sends you because you’ve met a dubious prophet before.

If you need to pay to receive a prophetic Word, it’s probably not a Word from God. If the prophetic word lines up with what’s in the Written word, but there are parts of it that doesn’t, lay the whole thing on the word. The Word is sharp enough to divide the soul from the Spirit. The Word will reveal which bit came from the soul of the prophet and which bit came from the Spirit of God in the prophet. If you’re not sure, about something that was said to you, keep it on the Word until you’re sure one way or the other. NEVER ACT ON SOMETHING, JUST BECAUSE THE PROPHET SAID. Every thing we do in the New Testament, we do by faith in God. If you don’t have faith, that this is God, don’t do it!

Honour those who God uses to prophesy to you, don’t worship them. By the way, God doesn’t only prophesy through people in the office of a prophet, He can use anyone! That’s why it’s wise to honour everyone around you…just as you’d honour the man or woman of God. It is disingenuous to honour people in the five fold ministry whilst you dishonour everyone around you. Wise people in the ministry do not lean on the honour offered by someone who dishonour those in their world.

I believe God still speaks through prophets today. But first, He speaks to you through His Spirit in you. Believe the Lord your God so shall you be established. Believe His prophets, so shall you prosper. 2 Chronicles 20:20. Prophecy in the life of a believer, works best and is such a gift that can cause you to prosper (to have a successful journey) when it comes to people who are established in God, through faith in God.

In the next season of your life, I pray that you will hear a voice behind you saying, this is the way, walk in it! I pray you never lack direction in this next season. I pray you won’t beat the air in your fight of faith. I pray that you receive all you need to fight with precision.

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02Mar
What are you learning from your Pain?
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Pain instructs.

I believe God allowed pain to instruct us. It wasn’t his first choice. He is not sadistic to choose pain as an instructor. His first choice was obedience. God’s best plan has always been that we learn by listening to Him and obeying His instructions.

The fallen state of man however, makes it highly possible that we wouldn’t know how to discern the voice of God.

And even when we do, our sin condition often persuades us that there is life outside of LIFE HIMSELF, wisdom outside of the instructions of WISDOM HIMSELF. So we reject God’s instructions.

But God has set things up in such a way that even the negative consequence of being outside of God’s will, is pregnant with opportunities to return to Him. This is the mercy of God in action.

Pain and Hurt is a testament of the mercy of God. Pain is God saying, you didn’t hear me last time, will you hear me now that it hurts?

The trouble is that we have an enemy, His job is to pervert something that God allows for our good, he turns it around for evil.

So when we get hurt in relationships, the hurt was teaching you who you are, what you like, what is important to you.

But the enemy perverts that, and teaches us to hate others for hurting us. Teaches us to live a distrustful life because we’ve been hurt. Teaches us not to try again because failing hurt the last time.

I think this is why it is important to learn to yield our pain to God. When we do, He uses our pain to teach us His lessons.

When we don’t yield our pain to God, we open ourselves up to pick up the perverted lessons that the enemy wants us to learn in pain and hurt.

We don’t need to ask you if you are learning from your pain, because we all are. We do need to ask, what are you learning from your pain?

The right lessons will make you better, not bitter, wiser not foolish. The right lessons will provoke growth not stunt your growth. The right lessons will make you bolder, not more timid.

Don’t waste your pain. Tell God about what hurts. Find good friends who will partner with God to bring out the best lessons from your pain.

This is the gospel, that in darkest and most painful parts of the journey of life, resurrection is possible because God turns our pain and our hurt in to resurrection power!

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29Jan
Beating Shame
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Shame is defined as a painful feeling of humiliation or distress caused by the consciousness of wrong or foolish behaviour. From my experience (personally and pastorally) I have found that when shame matures, it goes beyond being a feeling of humiliation that passes, as most feelings do. It becomes a force that seeks to shape our identity. That force makes us begin to be humiliated by who we are because of a wrong or foolish behavoior of ours.

God’s response to shame is the gospel. The good news of God’s unmerited favour! 

Paul was writing in Romans 1:16 to the christians in Rome who had heard of all the humiliating things that he had been through since he answered the call to preach the gospel. He said to them: 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ,[a] for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.

In other words he was saying, I know that based on what you know of my experience for the the sake of the gospel, you have reason to think that I will be ashamed of preaching it, but I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ! If you knew the story of what he had been through for the sake of the gospel you will agree that that was an amazing statement.
When a person has an experience of the true gospel that they hear, it  strips you of shame and guilt!
Shame says you’re a pervert because of what you did with your body last night! The gospel says your body is special, the temple of the Holy Ghost, that’s why you shouldn’t have done that!
Shame called you an adulterous woman who deserves to be stoned…the gospel says you are not condemned, go and sin no more!
Shame calls you a failure and says you should stay down because you fell, the gospel calls you the righteous who falls seven times and gets up every time!
Shame says people like you shouldn’t be talking when these educated folks are speaking because you don’t qualify. The gospel says before I formed you I knew you and appointed you a prophet to the nations! The gospel says I’ve given you something to say! The gospel says that God justifies the ungodly!
Shame says you denied Jesus 3 times Peter go back to fishing because you are hereby disqualified from thinking you can change the World…the gospel says go tell my disciples and Peter that I have risen! The gospel pulls you back into the fold in spite of your betrayal!
Shame says the mistake of your youth will determine your future and confine you to bearing the identity of what you did…But the gospel says in Isaiah 54:4
“Fear not; you will no longer live in shame.Don’t be afraid; there is no more disgrace for you. You will no longer remember the shame of your youth and the sorrows of widowhood.
I pray that this will be the season where you open your hear to hear the gospel. I pray that this will be the season when you set your expectation to have a personal experience of the gospel, the good news of God’s unmerited favour! I pray that inspite of how loud shame seems to be shouting, tugging or pulling, when you hear God’s Word, you will not harden your heart!
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20Mar
Sometimes I am ashamed of Christianity
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If I’m really honest, I am sometimes ashamed to be associated with Christianity…the religion! 

I feel ashamed because for the most part our voice is only heard loud and clear condemning something or someone

I feel ashamed because for the most part we are always looking for new recruits, but once they sign up, we begin to hold them to spurious standards which we haven’t really kept ourselves. And like an abusive spouse, every time they inevitably fall short of those standards we beat them down with our Words, our silences and our glares. 

I feel ashamed because for the most part we have become a hospital that doesn’t like sick people. We talk much more than we do. 

I feel ashamed because for the most part we who are supposed to be a refuge have become the last place that our world will consider seeking refuge in. 

In spite of the shame i sometimes feel, as a result of the above (I’m sure you can think of more reasons) I know that the state of the RELIGION is only a reflection of the fact that mankind is still very sick. Sick with the nature of sin. Christianity, the Religion,  is man made. What else do you expect from something that is made by sick sick men (mankind).

In spite of the shame I sometimes feel, I am also very thankful for Christianity, the Religion. I am so thankful because this man made, thing…this religion, introduced me to the most awesome person I know. Yes at the time of introduction they didn’t do a very good job of announcing who He really was. However I still got to meet Him. His name is JESUS! 

I heard that He was a hard task master who wanted to make me a slave. I heard that He had a long list of things that I needed to do in order to be accepted by Him. But when I met Him, I found that He didn’t demand anything from me. Truth is, He gave EVERYTHING for me. In fact it is the nature of His sacrifice for me that demanded a response. The more I learn about His sacrifice & His mercies, the more I see that the only fitting response to Him is to lay my whole life down for His cause. In meeting Him I have also learnt that I can only do this with His help. 

I heard that He was a tough judge who was writing down everything that was wrong with me, and seizing every opportunity He could get to remind me of them. When I met Him, I found that in the multitude of everything that was wrong with me, He was/is the only thing that was RIGHT with and about me. 

Religion made Him the lead vocalist in the sound track of shame, which played loud on the stage of my life. But when I met Him I found out that He was really the only voice that spoke words that preserved my dignity. When I met Him I found out that He is not ashamed to call me His brother! 

Religion put a limit on His acceptance of me. Religion told me that even after meeting Him, I could do something thing that causes Him to change His mind about me. But when I met Him, I found out that His love for me was scandalous & illogical! His love for me was just plain crazy! In spite of my messy, messy life, He voiced His resolve to stick with me. In Hebrews 13:5b he said – I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless norforsake nor let [you] down ([f]relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]

There are so many more things I could say about Him, but let’s leave it there for now. I’ll say this though.. He is NOT THE PERSON RELIGION SAID HE IS. He is kinder, more patient, more accepting, more real than anyone could have described.

Yes, Christianity, the religion is messy…very messy. That’s because it is man made, and man is still very very sick. I pray that you can look past religion, and meet Jesus. The journey of discovering Him is a life time thing, but it starts with a simple decision. A decision you can make right now. No priest, pastor, bishop, christian is even needed to make this decision valid. You can make a decision to discover Him today, by yourself. Right where you are, you can speak to Him. In case you weren’t sure what to say, you can say something along these lines: 

“Heavenly Father, thank you for sending Your son Jesus to die for me. The Bible says if I say with my mouth that Jesus
is Lord and believe in my heart that God raised Him from the dead, I will be saved. Jesus, I now confess you as my Lord and believe in my heart that You raised Him from the dead. I welcome you into my life. Right now I believe that I am saved. I am born again. Thank You Father.”

It will be great to hear from you if you made this decision. Speak to someone who knows and loves Jesus. Look for a church where they are more interested in Jesus than they are in Religion. Welcome to the Jesus adventure! 

if you didn’t feel to make that decision today, I’m praying you get another opportunity to consider Jesus, despite what religion says. 

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11Jan
SIN OR GRACE? YOUR CHOICE!
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(Romans 5:20 AMP) – But then Law came in, [only] to expand and increase the trespass [making it more apparent and exciting opposition]. But where sin increased and abounded, grace (God’s unmerited favor) has surpassed it and increased the more and superabounded,

What an amazing statement. The New Living Translation put it this way…

Romans 5:20 NLT-God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were. But as people sinned more and more, God’s wonderful grace became more abundant.

The truth is that in every place where you find sin, you will also find grace! If you find sin in a person, a community, a nation, the above scripture implies that in this era that we live in, you will also find grace. The beauty is that the grace is always greater than the sin! GOD HAS MORE GRACE THAN YOU CAN EVER HAVE SIN!

The question we have to answer is this; what will our focus be? What will we choose to see in people, in our community or in our nation? Will you choose to see SIN or will you choose to see GRACE? Where there sin in abundance, there is grace even more abundantly! In fact if you read Romans 5:21 it says that under the old law (which the bible describes as death) Sin reigned…sin ruled…sin had the last word in the matter. Today things are different…grace now reigns! Grace rules! Grace has the last Word on every matter!

In your life and in the life of others, will you refer to what the Grace of God is saying or will you refer to what Sin is saying?

Don’t be that person who gives sin the final word in your life, or in the life of others. Don’t conclude the matter in your life on the basis of what the sin is saying. Grace has the final say! Grace rules! Ask grace!

If we allow grace to have the final Word…Everytime, Titus 2 tells us that the grace of God will train you to say no to sin, to ungodliness!

For the grace of God (His unmerited favor and blessing) has come forward (appeared) for the deliverance from sin and the eternal salvation for all mankind. It has trained us to reject and renounce all ungodliness (irreligion) and worldly (passionate) desires, to live discreet (temperate, self-controlled), upright, devout (spiritually whole) lives in this present world, (Titus 2:11, 12 AMP)

When we focus on grace, it doesn’t mean that we don’t acknowledge the power of sin…it means that we more confident in the power of grace…after all, right now…grace rules!!

Live a grace focused life!!

Grace be with you
Chido

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26Sep
HE MAINTAINS MY LOT
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If you’re honest, you’ll agree that a lot of the great blessings in your life have come about because of God’s goodness…not because you deserve it. The challenge most honest people will also have is that of trying to maintain or take care of that which you know you didn’t deserve in the first place…I mean, if I didn’t deserve it, how can I even be sure that I can maintain it? If I didn’t deserve to be used by God, how can I be sure that I can guarantee that I wouldn’t foul up the will of God for my life? If I didn’t deserve this beautiful child, how can I be sure that I can do what is right by them?

2 things usually happen when we have these questions…we begin to work hard to maintain the blessing…or we begin to reject the blessing, because we know we don’t deserve it & we don’t have the ability (by ourselves) to maintain it.

David had the right idea:

Psalm 16:5 NKJV :

Lord, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup; You maintain my lot.

He acknowledges that the blessing is God’s doing…and he acknowledges that God is the one who maintains that inheritance!

I don’t have to carry the weight of trying to maintain something I know I didn’t deserve…He is the source of the blessing, and He is the one who maintains the blessing!

Dear friend, you can rest today, because the great things in your life have come to you out of the counsel of His own will…you can also rest today because He has also taken responsibility for maintaining the blessing. All we are required to do is trust Him!

Embrace the blessing completely…embrace those big dreams…HE MAINTAINS YOUR LOT!

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