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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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11Apr
Marriage: Headship & Submission
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I frequently have questions about relationships thrown my way. I thought I’d share this exchange with you.

Q

I’m engaged to marry and I currently work with my fiancé in our youth ministry, we are both Youth Leaders. I wanted to get your thoughts on how the dynamic of our relationship (regarding headship and submission) plays out in our responsibilities at church, can it be separate? Or should/do the roles also translate in other areas we work together (e.g. if we start a business etc..)

For example, if we have differing opinions about how to do things in the youth ministry (not necessarily to do with right or wrong) and we have discussed things and there needs to be a judgement call.

I have had impression in my heart for a while that we need to address/work out the issue of our roles concerning headship and submission according to God’s word so that we can have a fulfilled relationship.

I appreciate your advice!

A

The simple answer is that the principles of headship & submission should not be a church thing. It’s for every part of your lives together.

But your understanding of what the bible says about headship and submission will determine if you experience God’s best in this area of your relationship.

The best example for us in these matters is Jesus who is the husband of the church, and us, His bride. Take your cue from Him. So here’s the question you need to answer: how did/does Jesus treat us when we have ideas that are different to ours? It’s His goodness to us that led us to change our minds. Romans 2:4.

Your role as a husband and head is biblical and true, but it is not put into effect automatically, it is your willingness to be kind to her and prefer her that eventually leads to the submission you will get from her. Jesus, our husband never forced us or preached us into submission. He never demanded submission from us…He submitted his life first to us, it is this kindness that leads us, His bride, to submit to him.

The bible says to us, the heads of our marriage to love our wife as Christ loved the church. Christ loved the church by giving his life FIRST! Your wife will never struggle to submit to you in any matter if you give your life, if you give up your preferences for her on a daily basis. A good woman has no problem submitting to a dead man! 👀

You will not get the privilege to be the head of your household as God intended if you don’t constantly and consistently lay down your preferences. A man assumes his role as the head of his wife through His death to his preferences. He is not head of His house by “right” but by Love. That’s how Jesus became the head of the church, His bride.

When you do this consistently, and then learn to negotiate patiently, and negotiate with her as your friend and equal even though you have differing roles, you will reach agreements on these things.

Make it your goal to decide on everything together, she will not have a problem with giving you last word on the rare occasions that you both can’t agree.

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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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12Feb
Consider Jesus…
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Hebrews 3:1-2

Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus

To consider is to scrutinise, to look closely at, to examine carefully…

the quality of your life, the quality of what you build here on earth, the quality of your legacy in the eyes of God, will be determined by your ability to see and understand Jesus right.

When we stand before God to give an account of our lives, and our talents, it will all be in relation to how we saw Jesus and who we perceived Him to be.

One day, there will be no other human beings to impress, no jobs to work, no cars to drive, no cities worth visiting, no career ladder to climb, no grind, no school fees to pay, no social media attention to covet. One day ALL OF THIS will become meaningless!

Actually, it wouldn’t be meaningless, it’s meaning will be redefined in relation to Jesus.

1 Corinthians 3:11-13

For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is.

…In the final conclusion, the worth and value of everything we do here on earth will be defined in relation to Jesus.

We all owe it to ourselves to look carefully at this man Jesus. Who did He say He is? How does who He is and what He said affect my life today?

Consider The Apostle (sent one) and High Priest (one who stands before God on behalf of men).

Learn to do life, the small things and the great things, in full consideration of Jesus!

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05Feb
When you think Love is a feeling
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There is a difference between feeling love and loving someone. Loving someone is an outward expression of the love you feel. Love is a decision to act a certain way towards someone. Love is a decision to be kind, patient, long suffering, not boastful, not envious…you get the gist. Love is an action.

When you think Love is feeling, you think all you need is love: I think that when we say this, we’re often thinking that as long as I feel those butterflies in my stomach, nothing else matters.

But the quality of any relationship is not determined by the intensity of the flutter in your stomach. It is determined by how much of the person you can stomach when the butterflies are NOT fluttering.

I think you certainly need the butterflies in your stomach, but that’s not all you need. You also need to learn communication, patience, kindness, long suffering, overlooking offence, forgiveness. Because the stomach flutter should lead you to express love in the above ways…and more!

When you think Love is a feeling, you have unrealistic expectations. You expect too much from the one who says they love you. You expect them to finish your sentences, you expect them to change their relationship status on social media, you expect them to tell you all their secrets and conclude that when they haven’t, it’s because they don’t love you.

But it can take time to learn how to love a person. It can take time to learn how express the love you feel. If you love the person who says they love you, it is realistic that they’d be interested in learning about you. It’s realistic to expect that they want to spend time with you. It is realistic to expect that they treat you with respect.

Some things are realistic expectations. Some aren’t. Check your expectations or it can wreck your experience.

When you think Love is a feeling you think you don’t love them anymore when you don’t feel the love. My father said this during his speech on my wedding day, (I’m paraphrasing) – Love is not just what you do when you’re feeling the love, it’s what you do when you’re not feeling anything. When Love is mature, it is no longer operating out of feelings, it begins to operate out of decisions.

When you think Love is a feeling you can hurt yourself and your future because you believe previous relationships didn’t work because they didn’t really love you. So now you hate yourself for falling for someone who didn’t love you. And you’re paranoid because you don’t trust yourself to know when someone loves you.

It is true that some just took advantage. But I’ve found in counselling people through breakups that in many cases people don’t break up because of the absence of true love.

Many people break up with people they truly love because they don’t know how to correctly express their love. A person who loves you can hurt you because they are not good at loving you, yet. A person who loves you can hurt you when they try loving you in the same way that they like to be loved.

Stop hating yourself for falling for someone who couldn’t/didn’t learn how to love you. You’re not a fool. It is possible that they really did feel love for you, they just weren’t ready to truly love. It’s a good thing they’re not in your life now.

When you think Love is a feeling, you sanction everything that you feel about them sexually. The feeling of love is not what qualifies a person to have carnal knowledge of you (that’s old school for sex😃). I’ve spoken to many young people who think that the feeling of love justifies the sex. But biblically, it is the feeling of love, outwardly expressed in the decision to get married and the conviction to l follow through with that decision that is the prerequisite for sex.

Sex without the above decision exposes you to unnecessary hurt, because you engage in a deep physical and spiritual expression of love with someone who is not yet invested in loving you.

What do you think? Share, comment.

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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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03Oct
A miracle in the mundane
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We don’t always get spectacular, miraculous moments. But we ALWAYS get the mundane! Sleep, eat, rave repeat…in a loop.

Most of us are are not often thankful for the mundane routines of life because it’s mundane!

Truth is you don’t always need a miracle and a spectacle to change your future because most times everything you need to change your future is in the mundane routines of life. The miracle is in the mundane.

If you can appreciate the value of the mundane you can make your future appreciate in value.

If you can stop to find what works now and be grateful for that, If you can count your blessings and name them one by one as the songwriter says, you will find the power to rule over your future.

The present is a gift. The mundane routines are a gift. It contains the miraculous! Thank God for the mundane. There is a miracle in the mundane.

[wpvideo o39MWFz8 ]

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11Sep
Clean hands. Pure hearts.
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We no longer live in a dispensation where what we do determines how acceptable we are to God. We live in a dispensation where we are perfectly acceptable to God because of what Jesus did!

And our faith in Jesus is the bucket with which we can scoop up and use up heaps of the benefits that comes with being perfectly acceptable to God!

However, there is still something about a man or woman who is dedicated to having clean hands and a pure heart. There are heights God and in life that are reserved for those dedicated to keeping their hands clean and hearts pure.

Keeping your hands clean involves making a decision to make sure all you do empowers others and doesn’t hinder them.

Keeping your hands clean involves doing things in such a way that if anyone was to audit your actions and intentions retrospectively, they will find you guiltless.

Keeping your heart pure involves keeping your motives pure. It involves finding the best motive for anything you do, and yielding your heart to that motive.

Keeping your heart pure involves choosing to believe the very best about others even when there is reason to believe the very worst.

Keeping your heart pure is choosing God’s Word in your heart, above the jealousy, fear, resentment, envy, frustrations about yourself and others, which creep into our heart daily.

I believe we live in a time that requires us to move huge mountains and weather unprecedented storms. These are times that demands authentic faith in God. Authentic faith is characterised by clean hands and pure hearts. Authentic faith is in the state of your heart and not the size of your bible.

We are called to scale great heights in our industries, communities & families. Whilst we don’t seek to keep our hands clean and our hearts pure to be acceptable to God. We do need to desire that, for the sake of the advancement of God’s kingdom.

The grace of God does not exempt us from needing clean hands and pure hearts to scale great heights. The grace of God empowers us to live a successful life with clean hands and pure hearts.

Keep your hands clean. Keep your heart pure. Let God help you with it. Ask Him to. Make that your prayer in spite of your current situation.

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22Aug
How to treat her like a Queen
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I think that if you want to know the quality of a man, you can look at the state of his woman. A real man is not one who merely looks after himself. A real man is one who looks after girl!

I am fortunate to have grown up in a family where I saw my father treat my mother like the queen she is. I am also so grateful that since my young adult years I have been part of a church that challenged me to treat my woman right! (I’m still there!). In fact I had friends who every time we met, they’d ask me how I’m treating my girlfriend. They’d also ask her how I’m treating her.

I know how much of a difference this made to me. And I am dedicated to healthy relationships. I am dedicated to helping young men treat their girlfriend/wife like a queen.

So here are some of the things I try to practice. Not that I have already attained this, but this is what I press for because I believe this is the higher calling and example that Jesus has set.

How to treat her like a Queen

  • Be patient. I don’t mean that in any religious way at all. I mean, when she’s taking too long to get ready, or taking to long to make a point, or taking too long on the phone, be patient. Wait for her. Don’t always rush your queen. There is a way to make sure you’re not always late for things. When you’re patient you’ll find that way. But practice patience first.
  • Always be kind in Word & deed. Never allow yourself to be unkind to her. If any one deserves your kindness it’s your girl! Speak kindly to her. Act kindly towards her. ALWAYS!!
  • Understand she’s not one of the things you own. She has a mind. She has thoughts. Respect her thought. Respect her words. A good Woman is equipped with prophetic Words from God for you. Honour her as a prophet. That’s wise!
  • Think well of her. You can’t think badly of her and then treat her well. Think of her as your queen, your number 1, and treating her like one will come naturally.
  • Speak well of her in her presence and in her absence. Even if you have to complain about her, understand that there’s a right place and a right way to speak about her.
  • Practice laying down your life. She needs to know that you are willing to give up important people and things for her! Practice giving up things for her without needing to announce it to her. Learn to be good to her because it’s right, not because you’re trying to score!
  • Accept her as she is, not as you imagine she’d be. Most times when we meet someone we have a vision of what they’d be and how they’d look in the future. I don’t think there’s any thing wrong with that. But whilst you aspire for greater, you have to learn to accept her as she is today! If you’re not happy to accept all of her today, just leave her alone and move on. You both can only become what you see in the future when you truly & fully accept what you are today
  • Introduce her to your friends! Introduce her to people that will hold you accountable. Make yourself accountable. If you feel the urge to hide her away. She’s not your girl. Leave her alone.
  • Always be honest. Dishonesty is dishonourable. Dishonesty is selfish. Dishonesty is not fitting for a king or a queen. Dishonesty is not sexy. Be honest.
  • If you’re not married to her DON’T SLEEP WITH HER. I know this is not a cool point to make in today’s world. But listen, this really complicates a simple matter. For the most part, I believe this is the most prominent reason why a break up during dating is often as devastating as a divorce. If you ever break up, make it your goal to leave her as whole as possible! Sleeping with her does not leave either of you whole
  • She’s a Big girl, she can take care of herself. However never stop communicating your willingness to take care of her. She doesn’t need to be weak for you to take care of her. Strong people still need to be cared for. Care for her.
  • Learn how to communicate to her. Every woman is different. She hears things a certain way. Find out how she hears and commit yourself to speaking her language.

Let’s treat our women like Queens gentlemen. It is right. It’s honourable. It’s our duty to her, to our families, to society and to God!!

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18Aug
Sometimes, stop & weep
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It’s 4.20am. I woke up to settle my daughter back in bed. But I couldn’t go back to sleep because something was on my mind.

As I picked up my phone, to check the time, my emails, insta (as you do), perhaps out of habit, or in an attempt to distract my self from what was weighing on my mind, I came across this article from the BBC

Sometimes we get desensitised to horrors like this so we scroll on. I was about to move on but I believe the Holy Spirit, got me to go back and look at the picture again. To read the caption again. I think He needed my mind on this. Not on the matter on my mind this early morning.

Here’s another article from Aljazeera:

Can you comprehend losing 14 relatives in one go? Can you comprehend digging their grave? Can you comprehend the pain from the wrenching hearts of the survivors?

As impossible as it is to, I think it’s important we take the time to try and comprehend. Romans 12:15 asks us to mourn with those who mourn. You can only truly do this if we try to comprehend why those who mourn are mourning.

We deal with all kinds of things that keep us awake early in the morning. Some are important, truthfully, some are absolute trash. But in all these things. I pray we learn to stop, and weep with those who weep. And rejoice with those who rejoice.

Maybe we’d be much kinder to one another. Maybe we’d be more patient. Maybe we’d smile more. Maybe we’d worry less. Perhaps we’ll see the need to pray without ceasing. Maybe we wouldn’t fuss over nonsense!

Sometimes we fear that stoping to comprehend the pain of another might drive us to despair. It’s possible. But I think with the Spirit of God in us, He gives us a well balanced mind. A mind that is strong enough to be perplexed but not driven to despair.

I think compassion begins when we learn to stop and hear the silence of a friend. When we stop to comprehend the pain of our neighbors. Compassion begins in comprehending the reason why another rejoices.

Today, please stop. Think about another person. Pray about another person. Rejoice with someone. Weep with someone.

Start with Sierra Leone.

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