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Inspiration

It Will Add Up!

16th February 2024. Today is just one of those days you feel meeh! You know you are okay and nothing is wrong but yet you don’t feel okay and you really can’t pinpoint why you are feeling so. You feel like your feelings are all over you and you can’t wash them away, lol. You reflect back and you have had a pretty good week and achieved your goals at work in spite of the challenging factors outside your control. You think to yourself, maybe you have strained and your body is hinting at burn out because after all you were on sick off the entire previous week {explains why I didn’t publish a blog post}. So you decide that a good rest is what you need over the weekend, just sleep in and let your mind, soul and body breathe. Probably throw in some comfort food so the stomach feels included in the self-love plan. Then you start to feel lighter at the thought of this.

If only life was this simple to figure out, like this is what is happening and this is what I need to do to get these results so you go ahead and do it and voila, you get the exact expected results. Simple, right?. But we both know it’s not as easy as A, B, C…well at least not all the times. Some days you just can’t seem to figure things out. You have done your part and yet things are not falling in place. How do you explain the days when you’re burning with zeal and passion to pursue all you intend, and then other days when you’re burning out? How do you explain the stark contrast between the promises of God and your current circumstances? I know how frustrating this place can be and I empathize more with unbelievers because who do you turn to when you get here?

I am glad that in these moments I can turn to God for solace, for comfort, for wisdom and guidance and above all for light in the darkness. I am glad He is always there, always ready to embrace me and hold my hand through the maze called life and He gladly teaches me and orders my steps. I am glad that even when I can’t see what lies ahead, I know the one who holds tomorrow and He has assured me that He has gone ahead of me to prepare the way and that He is walking with me every step of the day.

Reading the bible greatly encourages me in such moments because Romans 15:4 states “For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope”.

It is encouraging to know that some, if not most of the great men and women in the bible, went through these moments as well. I think of Abraham, promised that he would be blessed, made a great nation and that all people on earth would be blessed through him. God promised him that his offspring would be like the dust of the earth, so that if anyone could count the dust, then his offspring could be counted. Yet he waited 25 years for his son. I wonder what was going through his mind those 24 years of waiting, knowing what God said and trusting in spite of the circumstances.

I think of Joseph, who dreamed as a 17-year-old that God would make him a great leader, greater than any of his family members. His brothers hated him with such zeal that they threw him into a pit before selling him into slavery. We know the whole story, from the pit to Potiphar’s house, to prison, and finally to the palace. It took 13 years of pain in Egypt for him to enter Pharaoh’s service as his second in command.

I think of Moses who was raised as Pharaoh’s son and yet deep in him, he knew his calling wouldn’t allow him to identify as his son as stated in Hebrews 11:24-26.By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter. He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin.  He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward.” When he ran away from Egypt and lived with his father in law for 40 years, I wonder what was going through his mind, knowing the great purpose ordained for him and yet living as a shepherd in a foreign land.

I think of David, who was anointed to be king as a young shepherd boy. He didn’t even look the part because he was Samuel’s last choice. Then he endured being viciously fought by Saul until his ascension on the throne at 30 years old. I wonder what was going through his mind during those difficult years of being chased like a dog, facing several attempted murders, fleeing from home, and living in caves, all while knowing he was the rightful anointed king.

Hebrews 11 is a summary of the men and women of faith and yet it is written that they were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect. All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth Hebrews 11:13.  Imagine that!

Life will not always make sense and I have come to understand that we are not expected to make sense of it always. Some seasons we will walk in boldness of knowing the blueprint of God in our lives. Some seasons we have to walk in faith and not sight because all we have is His word, His promise and the assurance of His character. And that will be more than enough. We won’t always get the full picture of how it will be. All we have are bits here and bits there as we try and figure the whole picture out.

Looking back at my life, I spent so many years trying to figure it out myself, I ended up making the wrong decisions all because I wanted control over the pieces of the puzzle. I wanted so bad to be in charge of how it all fit in that I didn’t notice I was slowly putting myself up for misery.

We can’t figure our lives on our own, not without running to the arms of the one who knows why He created us and the exact reason He created us. Anything less of this will be us trying to grope around, fitting pieces here and there, some fit in, some stick out like a sore thumb, but nothing will come close to looking like the masterpiece the Creator had in mind in for us. Because He is the God of perfection, His plans are good, pleasing and perfect, anything we do outside His will be a cheap imitation.

The only person who knows the beginning from the end, who knows what works and what won’t work, who knows the plans for our lives is our creator Himself. He says so in Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

In the days when things don’t make sense, I pray that your faith will carry you through because the God in whom you have believed in is faithful. He keeps His word and none will return to Him void without fulfilling the purpose He intended it for. When God promises you something, believe Him for it because it is already in existence in His realm and at His appointed time, you will walk in the fulfilment of the manifestations. It may not look like it at the moment but oh it will soon! And when it does, you will look back in hindsight and join the dots of the puzzle called life and it will add up.

Like Joseph did when he revealed himself to his brothers “Then Joseph said to his brothers, “Come close to me.” When they had done so, he said, “I am your brother Joseph, the one you sold into Egypt! And now, do not be distressed and do not be angry with yourselves for selling me here, because it was to save lives that God sent me ahead of you. For two years now there has been famine in the land, and for the next five years there will be no ploughing and reaping.  But God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance “So then, it was not you who sent me here, but God. He made me father to Pharaoh, lord of his entire household and ruler of all Egypt” Genesis 45:4-8

Am I still trying to figure out the pieces and puzzles of my life? Yes, I still think of how I’d want my life to be but I don’t fight God about it anymore. Yes, I have desires, but am learning to conform them to His. It’s His way, His will. He does what is best for me and I do what’s best for us (Him and I), I obey because I’ve learnt that obedience is the key to in the walk of faith.

Is my life making sense? Not always but I am letting Him use me in His Kingdom for His glory and honor.

Do I know what lies ahead for me? Not entirely, just bits and pieces of the blueprint of where He is taking me. The rest, only He does and as along as my hand is in the hands of Him who holds tomorrow, am buckled up, excited for the amazing ride we will have because am assured there’s no way this could turn out wrong.

Am I happy? Absolutely, I am infinitely blessed, thankful and whole. My pieces and puzzles are in the right hands and He is making a Master Piece.

Let Him do the same for you, won’t you?

Inspiration Motivation

Valley Of Berakah!

Happy New Month!

Just the other day we were excitedly crossing over to 2024 and today we are on the second day of the second month. Time indeed flies. I know most of us, if not all ,have goals/resolutions for the year and my prayer is that you are striving to grow in what I believe are the core spheres of  life namely spiritual, mental development, assignment, financial, relationships and health.

One of my spiritual goals this year is to complete a 1-year bible plan on 01/01/2025 and by God’s grace this is an area I don’t struggle with. I love reading my bible and despite having read it cover to cover severally, it’s always exciting to embark on this journey again simply because every time I open the word of God, He gifts me a fresh revelation.

For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. “ Hebrews 4:12

Rick Warren rightly said: “God’s Word generates life, creates faith, produces change, frightens the devil, causes miracles, heals hurts, builds character, transforms circumstances, imparts joy, overcomes adversity, defeats temptation, infuses hope, releases power, cleanses our minds, brings things into being and guarantees our future forever.” God’s word is truly alive, active and far more powerful than any of us can ever imagine.

I have been born again since 26th May 2016 and I can confidently say that salvation is a beautiful, exhilarating and life changing journey but truth be told it’s not always glitz and glam. It has its hills and valleys moment. Moments you’re on the mountain top celebrating victories and testimonies and answered prayers: the highlights of your walk of faith. Then the other moments when you’re knee deep in the valleys, drowning in fear, battling unbelief and fighting raging wars within your spirit and your environment.

I’ve had my fair share of highs and lows: highs that have been incredibly-mind blowing and literally the favour of God shining through and lows that have been down right heart-breaking. But in these moments, God has greatly encouraged me, assuring me that He knows and sees the end from the beginning so He knows how the story started, how it will end and everything in between. Nothing catches Him by surprise. In all these moments, He remains God and I am assured that He works ALL things together for good to them that love Him and are called according to His purpose.

Today I’ll share one of my favorite valley story in the bible that always encourages me.

2nd Chronicles, Chapter 20.

Looming Battle:

The chapter opens up in verse 1 with a heavy profound statement “After this, the Moabites and Ammonites came to wage war against Jehoshaphat.

Background story: in chapter 19, Jehoshaphat carried out an intense revival campaign throughout the land urging the people to turn back to God. He then went ahead and appointed God fearing judges and instructed them, “Consider carefully what you do, because you are not judging for mere mortals but for the Lord, who is with you whenever you give a verdict. Now let the fear of the Lord be on you. Judge carefully, for with the Lord our God there is no injustice or partiality or bribery. “He then proceeded to appoint Levites, priests and heads of Israelite families to administer the law of the Lord and to settle disputes. He gave them these orders: “You must serve faithfully and wholeheartedly in the fear of the Lord. Jehoshaphat was on fire and zeal for God and his passion was very impactful as a leader. You would think that after such a fiery season, there would be great reward but the very next chapter we are told his enemies united to wage war against him

Lesson: Serving God diligently and faithfully doesn’t always insulate you against battles. God has ordained a special set of circumstances, some are positive and some are not, but He knows ultimately it is for our advantage. In between where you are and the next level you desire are battles and because God knows we will never initiate them on our own accord (lol), He will arrange them for us. Our job is to keep a steadfast gaze on Him and not be overwhelmed by the surrounding circumstances.

Reaction to Battle:

When Jehoshaphat was informed of the approaching enemies, he was alarmed (who wouldn’t) but his next approach is what distinguished him as a servant of God. “3 He resolved to inquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah. 4 The people of Judah came together to seek help from the Lord; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek him.”

He didn’t let his alarm get the best of him, he knew where to immediately turn to, he knew where his help came from, he knew he never walked alone, he knew God is his refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. I wish I could confidently say that his approach is always my 1st response but truth be told, I have my many moments where I let circumstances and emotions get the best of me. And in those moments I always end up anxious to the core, worried and anxious until the Holy Spirit has to step in and remind me who I am and who I belong to. He is teaching me and am learning to take captive all those thoughts and make them obedient to Christ.

Lesson: Make God your first and only priority whom you turn to and depend on for everything and in all situations and circumstances, good or bad. You have not been called to do life alone. You can only do all things through Christ who strengthens you and ultimately it is not by your strength or might but by His Spirit.

Jehoshaphat cried out to God:

“6 Lord, the God of our ancestors, are you not the God who is in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. Power and might are in your hand, and no one can withstand you. 7 Our God, did you not drive out the inhabitants of this land before your people Israel and give it forever to the descendants of Abraham your friend? 8 They have lived in it and have built in it a sanctuary for your Name, saying, 9 ‘If calamity comes upon us, whether the sword of judgment, or plague or famine, we will stand in your presence before this temple that bears your Name and will cry out to you in our distress, and you will hear us and save us.’10 “But now here are men from Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir, whose territory you would not allow Israel to invade when they came from Egypt; so they turned away from them and did not destroy them. 11 See how they are repaying us by coming to drive us out of the possession you gave us as an inheritance. 12 Our God, will you not judge them? For we have no power to face this vast army that is attacking us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you.”

He didn’t pray his fear or his feelings based on the prevailing circumstance (like we are tempted to do most times). He didn’t go to God lamenting how he had been faithfully serving God and now he was under attack. He didn’t make mindless prayers in the face of great adversity. He confidently prayed the word of God, He acknowledged God’s power and sovereignty over all the earth. He remembered the great deeds and victory God had granted them in the past with their forefathers. He reminded God the promise He had given them when Solomon built the great temple of God: that when they stood in His presence before His temple that bears His Name and cried out to Him in distress, He would hear them and save them. Then he surrendered his enemies into God’s hand and expressed his utter dependence on God alone. This was such a beautiful and powerful prayer.

Lesson: May the Lord teach us to love and delight in His word. May He teach us to pray His word at all times. God will never go against His word. May His word be our anchor over our thoughts, feelings, deeds and circumstances.

“God is not human, that He should lie, not a human being, that He should change his mind. Does He speak and then not act? Does He promise and not fulfil?” Numbers 23:19

“All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever” 1st Peter 1:25

“So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it”. Isaiah 55:11

Response to Battle: God

Because our God is a faithful God, He responded to Jehoshaphat:

Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s. 16 Tomorrow march down against them. They will be climbing up by the Pass of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the gorge in the Desert of Jeruel. 17 You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.’”

I can only imagine the relief he must have felt when he heard the word of God. Many are the times our faint hearts probably expect that God will totally annihilate the enemies just like that and we won’t have to do a thing or break a sweat. And He totally can do this but He won’t all the times because in our relationship with God, we are both required to act. He faithfully does His part and waits on us to obediently do our part.

God assured Jehoshaphat that the enemies would still come and he would still need to face them but the battle belonged to God.

Lesson: In the midst of storms of life, don’t wear yourself out with worry and anxiety and the little strength you have of your own. Turn to God and let Him fight for you.

Response to Battle: You and I

The immediate response of Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah was they fell on their knees, face to the ground and worshipped God then the priests stood up and praised God with a loud voice. ’20 early in the morning they left for the Desert of Tekoa. As they set out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Listen to me, Judah and people of Jerusalem! Have faith in the Lord your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his prophets and you will be successful.” 21 After consulting the people, Jehoshaphat appointed men to sing to the Lord and to praise him for the splendor of His[c] holiness as they went out at the head of the army, saying: “Give thanks to the Lord, for His love endures forever.”

And we are told that as they began to sing and praise, the Lord set ambushes against the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir who were invading Judah, and they were defeated. The Ammonites and Moabites rose up against the men from Mount Seir to destroy and annihilate them. After they finished slaughtering the men from Seir, they helped to destroy one another. Would you imagine that? When the men of Judah came to the place that overlooks the desert and looked toward the vast army, they saw only dead bodies lying on the ground; no one had escaped.

This the part that greatly excites my spirit and makes me break out in joy. When God fights for you! Glory to Jesus! They didn’t have to lift a finger, all they lifted were their hearts to look up to God, their voices to give praise and worship God and their feet to move in obedience and march down against the enemies. Period! The rest was left to God and boy didn’t He put up a mighty show for the glory and honor of His name!

And the cherry on the ice cake: on top of the seamless victory, Jehoshaphat and his men went to carry off their plunder, and they found among them a great amount of equipment and clothing and also articles of value—more than they could take away. There was so much plunder that it took three days to collect it. Look at God!

Lesson: As soon as they began to praise, God acted and set ambushes: your victory heavily relies on your obedience, if they hadn’t stepped out in faith, I shudder to imagine the outcome. What a faithful and awesome God we serve who not only meets our immediate needs but also lovingly looks out for our wants and lavishes upon us His overwhelming blessings, more than we could ask or imagine. What won’t God with a broken and surrendered heart? May we learn to truly let go and let God, to be still and know He is God and to surrender our hearts, minds, bodies and everything concerning us to Him. There is nothing too big or too small that He won’t fight for you.

After Victory:

On the fourth day they assembled in the Valley of Berakah, where they praised the Lord. This is why it is called the Valley of Berakah [Berakah means praise.] to this day. Then, led by Jehoshaphat, all the men of Judah and Jerusalem returned joyfully to Jerusalem, for the Lord had given them cause to rejoice over their enemies. They entered Jerusalem and went to the temple of the Lord with harps and lyres and trumpets.

Lesson: Don’t be so overexcited at the victories, the blessings, the miracles that you forget to give thanks to God who enabled all things to work in your favor. Never be so caught up in seeking God only for what He can give you but always for the intimacy of His presence and the sweet fellowship of a relationship with Him.

Then we are told at the end that the fear of God came on all the surrounding kingdoms when they heard how the Lord had fought against the enemies of Israel. And the kingdom of Jehoshaphat was at peace, for his God had given him rest on every side.

Lesson: When God wins a battle for you, you don’t have to fight that one ever again, it’s marked as ‘done and dusted’ lol. Don’t strive for the peace that the world gives, which always comes at a costly price of compromise but let God give you His peace.

I’ve read this chapter countless times but it still always gets me excited all over again like a little girl and as I type this am shaking in joy and can’t stop praying, praising and above grateful that am blessed to call this God my God!!Most times we hear that valley seasons are full of pain and anguish but here is a testimony that when you trust God in your valleys, you can still smile and come out praising Him in victory.

In this life you have so many adversaries and yet you are oh so little BUT you have a BIG GOD and that in itself balances the equation. Won’t you let God fight for you?

*****

I’d like to challenge you this year: pick up your bible, let’s read and grow together. There are countless bible plans that will help structure your reading and one of my fave resource that I have come to love is https://www.youversion.com/.

See you on the other side of growth!

 

Inspiration

Cheers To The New Year!

19th January 2024 and the first blog of the year. Happy New Year dear reader!

My prayer is that we are all in good health and high spirits as we embark on the exciting journey that the New Year brings. 2024 is still young and fresh, full of hope and excitement of what it brings forth for us. The year still smells of its newness (for some of us, lol) with goals, dreams, hopes and desires for a fruitful, productive and prosperous year. Day 19 and am still super excited for the New Year; I’m super excited to see what God has in store for me.

Late in 2022 before crossing over to 2023, I was in a season of prayer and God gave me His word that He is opening a door and much would begin to shift through this new space, a dimension of change and He was unlocking my purpose and especially in my gifting’s and potential. At that point I really couldn’t pinpoint what God had in store or more accurately I wasn’t spiritually mature enough (then, lol) to exactly discern it, all I had was a deep gut conviction in my spirit. So when crossing over to 2023, I was certain that I was not just physically crossing into a new year but it was a change of season, the end of closed doors and the dawn of a new era of open doors. I knew that God was leading me to right where He needed me to be.

True to it, 2023, the Lord gifted me this burning hunger and desire for Him and I pursued Him with all of my heart. I did not just read my bible, I studied it and meditated on His word. I became more intentional in the gathering of believers and attended as many nurturing fellowships as I could where we talked, shared and spent time reading the word, praying and holding each other accountable to ensure we were all growing deep in God. I devoted my time and gifts to serving in the marriage ministry in my church where we walked with couples desiring to set God as the foundation of the marriages. I spent time listening and studying sermons of men and women of God as the Spirit would lead and guide me. I wasn’t seeking Him for what I could get in return, nope, I just wanted Him.I had my deskie ask me one day at work ‘apart from church stuff, what else do you do?’ lol. The core of my being was entirely devoted to seeking God and growing in and with Him, the rest didn’t matter as much to me.

James 4:8–10 writes, Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.

I have truly walked in the fullness of that word. As I grew more intimate with Him, He began to reveal Himself more to me and also reveal my identity and the fullness of it in Him. I grew more grounded and confident of who I am in Him and the limitless power I carry as the child of God and His chosen vessel. I grew out of being bothered/triggered by small weightless things, I was less anxious about what was/is to come because I was now walking in light, in knowledge and in revelation. He gave me dreams, visions and a Rhema word of His perfect will for my life and I was walking and resting in assurance.

I am simply, truly and deeply overwhelmed by God’s doing. He is Ebenezer and faithful to His word; none of His word falls to the ground. 2023 was the year of open doors and I saw God move in my life, not only for me but also for my family. We saw God move in ways that only He could; we dwelt more in His presence, we walked in favor, provision and protection, we experienced His healing, the list is simply endless. I have loads of testimonies: in summary it was a God Year and He showed up and showed off lavishly.

Most of us know God as a father, healer, provider but He is also a rewarder, the rewarder of men. My core verse was “And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who seek him. Hebrews 11:6

2024 without a doubt I am confidently assured that I am still walking in the blessing of that new season because when God opens a door, NO MAN can shut it.

“These are the words of Him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What He opens no one can shut, and what He shuts no one can open. I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut.” Revelation 3:7-8

This explains my excitement for 2024 because I have tasted and seen that the Lord is incredibly amazing and I am looking forward to growing in more intimacy with Him, to walking into more open doors and to be lavished by His overwhelmingly great and exceeding rewards.

This is my prayer for you as well:

I pray that as you have begun the year, you will anchor yourself on the rock who is CHRIST, the only firm foundation, the rest are sinking sand.

I pray that as you are excitedly planning and setting goals, that God will be a priority and He will find room in your hearts and your lives.

I pray that you will desire to know Him more starting from right where you because you are never far away, all you need is to turn back and He will meet you there.

I pray that you will experience God in a way that you never have and in doing so, you will experience freedom from every captivity, chains and strongholds that have been holding you back.

I pray that you will find your freedom in Christ alone because He paid for it ALL.

I pray that you will come to the full understanding of how much God deeply loves you and that nothing you have done/ will do can separate you from His love.

I pray that you will prosper concerning all things and to be in good health, just as your soul prospers.

I pray that God will shake off every foundation, connection and relationship that is not of Him as He anchors you on His will.

I pray that God will make you lie upon lush pastures and He will lead you by restful waters.

Above all, I pray that you will distinctively know His voice as you walk in obedience to Him.

So here is a toast to the New Year!!

Cheers to learning and growing together as the Lord leads us.

Amen!

Inspiration

Be Led!

Welcome back home my dear reader! Last we were here was 30th June 2023: this walk of faith is turning out to be a stroll lol, Lord forgive me!

Towards the end of October I did a little soul searching and decided to make a few changes for the remaining days of 2023; a little motivation to ensure I end the year impactful and set the tone for 2024. One of the things I challenged myself to do was publish a blog post every week and so here I am being faithful in the small things. Can you believe that the year is almost coming to an end? Today, the 10th day of November is day 314 out of 365, exactly 51 days left to the cross over, truly God has been gracious and faithful to us.

Last year a time like this, the older version of myself would have been in a state of panic and anxiety thinking to herself, “oh my goodness, the year is ending. What have I done with myself? What have I done with my life? Where am I going? Am I living purposefully?” Oh how I remember her too well she was something special, lol.

There are moments I struggled in 2022 and I was trusting God to end those seasons and usher me to a new level. Outcomes of these moments was I stopped serving both in church and in my personal space, I wasn’t as fervent in my prayers, fasting, and devotions. I wasn’t writing my goals, blogging, dreaming and chasing goals. I just lived, small and settled and I was exhausted mentally, emotionally and spiritually (more of it here https://mywalkoffaith.co.ke/ebenezer/).

I remember when I crossed over into 2023, deep in my spirit I knew it was not just a physical crossing into a new year but it was a change of season: the end of closed doors and the dawn of a new era of open doors. And true to it, I am deeply overwhelmed by God’s doing in my life these past 10 months, He is Ebenezer and faithful to His word. This 2023 version of myself is different: she’s not feeling alone, struggling in a storm, battling feelings of doubt, insecurities and stagnation. She’s more settled and grounded in God, she’s more aligned spiritually and is discerning to understand the times and seasons by the grace of God. She has solidified her identity in Christ and isn’t wavered by small waves of life as she has learned to lift her eyes unto Jesus, the author and finisher of her faith. She’s living her life authentically, boldly and unashamed knowing the only validation she needs is His. She’s serving in church and in her personal space as she disciples those God brings her way. She’s no longer struggling to pray: the dying embers have been fully flamed and this girl is on fire for Christ.

I have now come to fully believe that when we seek God diligently, He rewards us with His presence and so much more. “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Hebrews 11:6

I am a living testimony, I have seen His hand in my life and I am in awe of what a surrendered vessel can become in His hands. All it needed was me letting go of the reins on my life and letting God lead the way because it dawned on me that the root cause of my struggles were anchored in my innate desire for self-control. All this time spent fighting God for the control was just wasted years because my life isn’t my own to lead, more so when I surrendered to Christ and allowed Him to be the Lord of my life. Prophet Jeremiah in his book, chapter 10.23 states that so well “Lord I know that people’s lives are not their own; it is not for them to direct their steps”. I wonder why I was I hell-bent on living my life on my turf like I was the “lord” and yet I was just a little smurf (yea, big animation fan).

But doom to you who fight your Maker – you’re a pot at odds with the potter! Does clay talk back to the potter: ‘What are you doing? What clumsy fingers!’ Isaiah 45:9(Message version)

Why do we struggle with leading ourselves yet we are limited as mankind? If only we knew, understood and believed that God’s plan for our lives is grand beyond our wildest imaginations, then we wouldn’t be struggling to get off the driver’s seat and let Him drive us to our destiny. Before we were formed in our mother’s wombs, God knew us and before we were born, He had already predestined us for greatness. His plans are to prosper us and not to harm us, plans to give us a hope and a future. As mankind, we are yet to witness a fraction of what God has in store for us, period! All we have experienced is just but a glimpse of the His magnificent will for us. It is written in 1 Cor. 2:9 “No eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the human heart conceived, what God has prepared for those who love Him.”

Beloved, don’t box God!

Don’t box Him in comparison to what you think you need or want. You only end up grossly limiting Him to your own thoughts which are way lower than His. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9. Your needs/wants are so basic to what God has in store for you, it’s like a child asking the dad to buy them a teddy bear because in their mind that’s the biggest need and yet the dad can provide so much more than that.

Don’t box Him in comparison to what He has already done for you. You only end grossly limiting Him to one template yet He can do exceedingly abundantly above what you think or imagine. God is the same yesterday today and forever more BUT His methods are not the always the same. Some battles you will strike the Red Sea with your rod, some you will wade in the Jordan River. Some battles you will strike out the enemy with your swords and some you will walk around Jericho for 7 days for your victory. Some miracles He will only speak a word and your sight will be restored and some miracles He will spit the ground, mix his saliva with dirt, make mud and apply the paste your eyes. Don’t use the victories of yesterday as a strategy for today’s battles.

Don’t box Him to your timelines. All the days ordained for us were written in His book before one of them came to be. God is never late, God is never early; God is always on time: He works in His ordained and appointed time. We are the ones who are always in a hurry when we want it done on our terms in our own timing, then when it doesn’t happen, we cry out there is a delay. But is it ever a delay if from the word go we didn’t know of the exact timing of the occurrence? Who should dictate what entails a delay? Us or the one who creates the time and the timings? I believe until we know the expected time of arrival, then we really can’t tell if there is a delay, that can only be God’s job and we must strive to leave it in His hands.

If there is a core lesson for me in 2023 is the gentle reminder that we are just but vessels in the hand of our maker, we are like sheep in the fold of our good Shepherd. Our job isn’t to know where we are going, nope. That’s the Shepherd’s job and He does such an amazing job at it. Our job as His sheep is to simply know God’s voice and to walk in total obedience. The Psalmist in chapter 37 stated that “The steps of a righteous man are ordered/directed and established by the Lord”

Our job as His sheep is to rest in the words of Psalms 23:

The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He knows all your needs and wants, He is Jehovah Jireh, your provider.

He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters.
He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.

All we are called to do is to allow the Shepherd to take the lead. Even in the days when we can’t tell where we are going and it seems all dark, we are called to not fear.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

Even in the face of opposition when we feel we are hard-pressed in all corners and we are surrounded and outnumbered, we are called to rest in the assurance that He is the master orchestrator and all things work together for good.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.

So today, do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the Kingdom: rest in that assurance. Surrender to His leading, purpose to draw near to Him and He will draw near to you. Walk intimately with Him, know His voice and follow His leading.

And surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

Let go and Let God lead you.

In whatever you do, wherever you may be, place your hand in His, be His faithful follower and let God’s hand lead you and you’ll be surprised at what God will do!

AMEN!

Inspiration Motivation Second Chances

EBENEZER!

30th June 2023, the last day of the sixth month of 2023! To God be the glory and the honour for this far He has brought us, carried us and sustained us. Where would we be were it not for His mercies and grace? If the LORD had not been on our side— let Israel say— if the LORD had not been on our side when people attacked us, they would have swallowed us alive when their anger flared against us; the flood would have engulfed us, the torrent would have swept over us, the raging waters would have swept us away. Praise be to the LORD, who has not let us be torn by their teeth. We have escaped like a bird from the fowler’s snare; the snare has been broken, and we have escaped. Our help is in the name of the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalms 124:1-8.

As I write this, my heart is overflowing with immense gratitude because God has been faithful and there are so many miracles: little, big (and everything in between) that we can all count and attest that God has been truly faithful. For starters being alive is a big testimony. Every day I watch the news there is always a grisly story of an accident or incident claiming the lives of people. But we are here and we are alive. Not because of anything special we have done or any claim of our holiness or righteousness, it’s by just by His grace and mercy. There are so many who lost their lives battling illness and serious medical conditions, but we are here and we are alive. There are so many who were involved in road accidents and lost their loved ones, yet we are here and we are alive, never been in an accident/survived one/ saved from one. Believe me, there are so many battles that God fights for us behind the scenes without our knowledge.

So can we just take a minute to reflect on the goodness of God and say Thank you Jesus!

From the rising of the sun to the setting of the same, the name of the LORD is to be praised. Psalm 113

At the onset of 2023, I was elated and it was not your usual New Year excitement, nope, it was more than that. It was more profound, there was a deeper spiritual meaning to my excitement. Back in 2022, a bigger part of the last quarter of the year from September I started feeling restless, like there was more I could/should have been doing with my life but I wasn’t. I started looking back at my life and looking for big milestones that in my mind I thought I should have achieved by then but there were nowhere in my list of accomplishments. I will be honest to admit that this is not a beautiful space to be mentally, spiritually, emotionally or even socially. I started demeaning the journey of where I had come from and where I was at that point because I was not seeing anything good about the process.

I started feeling that some blessings had taken too long to come to fruition. I started basing my value and worth on the things I had hoped to accomplish by a certain age and because I wasn’t seeing them, I got into a space of anxiety and hopelessness paired with despair. I started gradually pulling away from the things of God, things that I loved, blogging, journaling, devotions…and even when I did those things, it was more of lamentations, lol. I was carrying this heavy weighted cloud of gloom and sadness with me, feeling like a total failure and disappointment to God and to myself. Looking back at the entries in my journal then and weeeeeh!! I was spiraling into a dark place. Below is an excerpt from 23/11/22:

Lord, I am struggling. I feel am stuck, stagnated. I should be doing so much but am so little. Am not disciplined, not dreaming, not exploring my potential, not pushing myself. Am settling for less, for comfort. Like I know what I should be doing but I don’t and I sit and envy people who are doing their best. What’s wrong with me? Why am I comfortable with little? Shock me. I need an awakening, a revival. I know you have grand plans for me. How do I move from here to there? I have dreams, Rhema word, passions and desires but my life isn’t reflecting it. Why? Am I in the process? Am I keeping you waiting? What do I need to do? Where do I need to be? Who do I need to be?  I don’t like this feeling. I need a difference. Am not fasting, not praying, not doing my devotions. journaling, blogging or serving. I am incompetent. I am limited, grossly.

Another excerpt from 6/12/22:

I look at the gap between 2020 and 2022 and clearly I have stagnated. I look at who I was in 2018/2019 and who I am now and there is a total difference. I stopped serving, praying fervently, fasting, devotions, writing my goals, blogging, dreaming, chasing goals. I just lived, small and settled, content, did not stretch. I survived. I don’t like this lazy uninspired version of me. Of all the great potential God has placed in me, I shouldn’t be content in been small, little, insignificant. I need to awake the giant in me. What happened? I need fresh fire, revival, anointing

When it rains, it pours and that’s exactly how I was feeling and struggling with, alone in a storm.  I knew who I am in Christ, where I am from, with God being my source. I knew why am here, what I can do and where I am going. But I just couldn’t figure out how to get unstuck from where I was. People say showing weakness is a sign of strength, but I think it’s not weakness, it’s vulnerability and to admit to the fact that you are vulnerable is a form of courage that challenges you to step up to deal with that problem. It isn’t a façade that I am invulnerable, no one is invulnerable. Am glad that Jesus loves taking messes and transforming them into masterpiece and that He never says ‘’this is the last time I am putting you back together”.

All through September to November 2022, I was wallowing in and out of that sad state but one thing was constant, I kept crying out to God asking Him to awaken me, revive me, touch me once more, and say another word that would fire me back to momentum. Let me tell you guys, God is super faithful. He sees all our cries, hears all our prayers and answers according to His will for us in the Kingdom. Mid November my sister invited me to join this weekly online fellowship she had been attending for a while since October and it was where God was directing her to settle as a home church. For a while I was reluctant but eventually I warmed up to the idea and attended one or two services before God connected me to the man of God who has obtained the grace from God. Our very first interaction, He made a declaration over my life:  that there was a space that I wanted to step into and I have been hoping that the Lord will quicken me to it but it seems long overdue. That the Lord is opening that door and I would walk in that space pretty soon and much would begin to shift through this new space,  a dimension of change and the Lord is unlocking my purpose and especially in my gifting’s and potential.

To say I was elated is an understatement, I cried my heart out because after a long while, I felt heard and seen by God and it was pure love washing me all over again. And true to God’s word, which never goes back in vain and always fulfils the purpose it was sent to accomplish, the Lord turned my situation around to the glory and honour of His name. December was marked by so many testimonies of His faithfulness ranging from family to work to ministry. When I crossed over into 2023, deep in my spirit I knew it was not just a physical crossing into a new year but it was a change of season: the end of closed doors and the dawn of a new era of open doors. 30th June 2023 and I am truly overwhelmed by God’s doing in my life in these 6 months, God has just been showing up and showing off on me.

I have seen the hand of God in my life and He has revived me and awakened the fire back on the altar. Am back to serving in church, the marriage ministry where has called us to be a light amidst the current darkness in this institution. My passions and dreams have been revived and am actively working on pursuing them from a Kingdom agenda. God has slowly disconnected me from relationships that were not aligned to Him and in return He has restored some divine relationships I had walked away from and connected me with new divine strategic relationships where we are all pursuing God together and keeping the fire of God burning amidst. Am back to journaling, dreaming, visions, fire for the word, am witnessing revival all around me, in my family and spaces. The list is so endless, I lack words: talk of divine favor, divine strategic connections and relationships, restoration, endless blessings and above all His Grace that carries me. Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen. He named it Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us! 1 Samuel 7:12

All those feelings of restlessness, stagnation etc., He has/continues to deal with them and now I understand am on a journey to the glorious vision He showed me when I surrendered to him and accepted Him as my personal saviour and friend. I have come to understand that God will show you your vision but never tell you how to get there and there is a reason why. The vision is a glimpse of the end but there is a space between the end and where you are currently, that space is called the plan. The plan is the process that takes you to your destination. God will tell you your end like he showed Joseph in the dreams, the throne, the power with his brothers bowing doing to him. We all have dreams; we all have our end that He has revealed to us but God never tells us the plan because chances are we might tell Him to forget about the destination. If Joseph knew the pit and the prison was to come before the throne, he might have said forget about the throne. The plan is God’s secret. The plan is to prepare us for the destination so He takes us through all these phases to prepare and develop us.

So today am here to encourage you in the Lord, to urge you to put your trust in God even in the situations when what He has spoken don’t mirror your current situation. Any time you face a setback or the enemy sneaks in and whispers his deception, may you be encouraged that it is all part of the plan. Don’t panic, even your mistakes He will conform them to fulfil the purpose. Right now where you are may not be where you want to but it’s all part of the plan. God is working on character development, patience development, vision development etc. God is preparing you for what He has prepared for you.

God is faithful!

Inspiration Motivation

Not Yet Child!

Our second blog post of the month/year and I believe it calls for applause because a win is a win, whether big or small and it should be celebrated lol. I haven’t written in a while but it feels amazing to be back here.

This past week I have been reading and meditating on the book of Luke and despite having read it before, am always in awe of how the Holy Spirit teaches and brings out new revelation each and every time. Indeed the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Hebrews 4:12.

Luke chapter 1 begins by giving us the story of Zechariah and Elizabeth who were both from a priestly lineage and loved the Lord wholeheartedly, devoting their entire lives to serving Him. They were commended as righteous in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commands and decrees blamelessly. But they were childless because Elizabeth was not able to conceive, and they were both very old.

Serving God does not equate to a life free of pain, sorrow, trials and tests. To think that God owes you a smooth sailing ride because you are living in obedience to Him is a wrong mind-set that robs from your walk of faith. Every Christian in the salvation journey will undergo the baptism of the sufferings of Christ and this season is inevitable because it has its purpose. Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything James 1:2-4. In the midst of it all, our greatest consolation is that we don’t walk alone because we have the assurance that in the storms, God is with us, watching us, ordering our steps and carrying us. And after we have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called us to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish us” (1 Peter 5:10).

Despite Zechariah and Elizabeth being childless, they never stopped seeking, praying and most importantly they never stopped serving God. As a matter of fact, their long life prayer was answered while Zechariah was in the middle of service. This is such an encouragement to never stop serving and seeking God even in those times when we think/feel we are alone and He is not answering our prayers. Salvation is a beautiful, exhilarating and life changing journey but truth be told it’s not always glitz and glam. It has its hills and valleys moment. Moments you’re on the mountain top celebrating victories and testimonies and answered prayers: the highlights of your walk of faith. Then the other moments when you’re deep in the valleys, drowning in fear, battling unbelief and fighting raging wars within your spirit and your environment.

Moments you’ll pray fervently for certain requests and some will be answered almost immediately with joy and thanksgiving but some will take years and years of still praying, still hoping, still believing and still holding onto the faith. In such moments, we are called to never take our eyes away from Jesus because at His appointed time, He makes all things beautiful. And as rightly put in Habakkuk 2:3 for the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay.

And true to God’s word and timing, God answered Zechariah and Elizabeth, “Do not be afraid, Zechariah; your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you are to call him John. After hearing God’s word, the answer to their prayers, you would expect that Zechariah’s reaction would be one of joy and pure bliss, elated and over the moon for hearing the words he had literally waited all his life for. But sadly the first words that come from his mouth were filled with doubt and unbelief. Zechariah asked the angel, “How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is well along in years.” This reminds me the incident in Acts 12: 5-17 when Peter had been arrested to be executed the following day so the believers gathered together to fervently intercede for his release and God intervened and sent an angel to set him free. The first stop he made was at the house where they had gathered to pray for him. When this had dawned on him, he went to the house of Mary the mother of John, also called Mark, where many people had gathered and were praying. 13 Peter knocked at the outer entrance, and a servant named Rhoda came to answer the door. 14 When she recognized Peter’s voice, she was so overjoyed she ran back without opening it and exclaimed, “Peter is at the door!”15 “You’re out of your mind,” they told her. When she kept insisting that it was so, they said, “It must be his angel.”16 But Peter kept on knocking, and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished.

Why did they disregard Rhoda’s statement? Why did they think it was his angel? Why were they astonished? I think simply put, they prayed but didn’t have the faith that it would be answered. And that’s how most of us play out in our journey of faith especially in the moments we have prayed continuously for a season but the answer has not been delivered. After a while something in us changes and it starts to feel like we are praying to tick a box but deep down, the doubt has been rooted in our hearts and minds.

The bible is very explicit that whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “if you have faith and do not doubt, not only will you do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. 22 If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” There is no room for doubt in a believer’s life because it has its consequences. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7 That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do. . Oh Lord that you would help our unbelief.

Due to Zechariah’s unbelief, he was muted and was unable to speak until the birth of his child, possibly 9 long months of silence and observing the miracle of God slowly manifesting in front of his eyes. He was only able to speak when he came in agreement with the word of God concerning his testimony as he named his child. Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue set free, and he began to speak, praising God. All the neighbors were filled with awe, and throughout the hill country of Judea people were talking about all these things. 66 Everyone who heard this wondered about it, asking, “What then is this child going to be?” For the Lord’s hand was with him.

There is no greater honor than God choosing to reveal His glory through His servants who are willing to be used by Him. Sure it doesn’t come easy, the wait will be heart wrenching, the voices of doubt will be screaming out loud and the mocking of the crowds will be heightened. But if you hold still, anchored on God and the credibility of His word which never fails and never returns void, in the end you will come out with such a testimony that will astonish everyone around you.

Trusting in God sometimes looks like foolishness in the eyes of man because He chooses things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And He chooses things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. (1 Corinthians 1:27). Noah looked like a fool when he built the ark and he was mocked and ridiculed but he kept his faith knowing and trusting in who had spoken to him. In the end, all the scoffers and mockers drowned in the very thing they mocked him for. Abraham left his family and all he knew to follow the voice of an unknown God, into an unknown territory and I can imagine how his family members reacted to the news. Even when God told Him that He would make him a father of many nations and that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars, in his old age, he believed the Lord, and it was credited it to him as righteousness.

Zechariah and Elizabeth were old and barren but by the power of God they conceived and gave birth. The Lord did it for them, showed them His favor and took away their disgrace among the people. And in the end, they all had songs to testify and glorify God for the great work He had done through them. Not only were they given a son, but they were given such an extraordinary son 14 He will be a joy and delight to you, and many will rejoice because of his birth, 15 for he will be great in the sight of the Lord. He is never to take wine or other fermented drink, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit even before he is born. 16 He will bring back many of the people of Israel to the Lord their God. 17 And he will go on before the Lord, in the spirit and power of Elijah, to turn the hearts of the parents to their children and the disobedient to the wisdom of the righteous—to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”.

John grew, became strong in the Spirit and he lived such a radical life in pursuit of his purpose. He was the voice of one calling in the wilderness nudging people to prepare the way for the Lord. He went into all the country around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sin and he heralded the Messiah. The people were amazed at his deeds but most importantly, he received the highest accolade when Jesus testified about him as the greatest. Truly I tell you, among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet whoever is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. Matthew 11:11.

Am here to encourage you beloved, do not doubt God, do not doubt His word and most certainly do not doubt His power and ability. Nothing is impossible with God: if He has said it, He will most definitely do it. Before we were formed in our mother’s wombs, God knew us. All the days ordained for us were written in His book before one of them came to be. God is never late, God is never early; God is always on time: He works in His ordained and appointed time. We are the ones who are always in a hurry when we want it done on our terms in our own timing, then when it doesn’t happen, we cry out there is a delay. But is it ever a delay if from the word go we didn’t know of the exact timing of the occurrence? Who should dictate what entails a delay? Us or the one who creates the time and the timings? I believe until we know the expected time of arrival, then we really can’t tell if there is a delay, that can only be God’s job and we must strive to leave it in His hands.

As I write this am also preaching to myself because severally I have cried to God and lamented at Him for the supposedly delay in answering some prayers, I too like Zechariah and Elizabeth know the pain of waiting to hold a testimony. But our God is so gracious because He knows how to wipe our tears and soothe us even in the waiting season.

And to you who is also waiting, for a job, a promotion, hand in marriage, salvation for your loved ones, healing from the loss of a loved one, breakthroughs in any area…the list is long and endless, this is my prayer for you: May you be found walking in obedience to God and His word. At His appointed time, may your results speak for you, louder than your own voice because there is a sermon only results can preach. May you never tire of laboring in prayer and the word until you get your results. As you wait, may you never live a powerless barren Christian life but may your life command super extraordinary results. In the name of Jesus. Amen!