COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS

When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done

So many times, we face one problem or the other.  It’s either finances, relationships or marriages, ministry, etc. These problems can sometimes be overwhelming to the point that it looks like God isn’t doing anything in our lives. There are times in my life where the problems I encounter can take over my thoughts and that’s all I’ll think about, forgetting or ignoring what God has done or is doing in my life.

But in all these times, if only we can just take some time and reflect, meditate and count all that God has done and still doing for us, we’ll shift our attention from these worries and challenges and embrace all that God has done for us and He will still do for us. We may not have all we want today but it’s very important we recognize all that God is doing for us and appreciate Him from our hearts. There is the need to make it a habit to count our blessings more often than our problems especially in trying times.

We need not be like the Israelites who complained when faced with new challenges forgetting the past things God had done for them in the past. During their journey from Egypt when they were faced with the problems of food and water, they complained and forgot how God delivered them in the past, Exodus 16:1-3. Murmuring and complaining kills our faith in God and also pushes us to doubt God’s promises and His love for us.

So instead of complaining, tell God, Father I know I’m facing financial problems, I have bills yet unpaid, I have to go to school, my marriage or relationship isn’t working, my mother isn’I well, I don’t have a job, I don’t have a child, I don’t have a beloved, and my parents’ marriage isn’t working and even as I pray and trust you for change, I want to thank you for your salvation, divine health, travelling mercies, healing, employment, wisdom and counsel from the Holy Spirit, academic excellence, love, peace, joy, family and friends, the Church, testimonies, a secured future, my gifts and potentials etc.

To be alive and healthy is a great blessing. I took my uncle to the hospital one evening after a short illness. At the emergency ward, I saw different patients going through a lot of complicated cases. Some had to be helped before they could seat up and even eat. I saw a young boy, who was groaning in so much pain, then I realised that to be alive and also in good health always is a great blessing one can have daily.  

These and many others we must be grateful for. They may look insignificant before us, but these are the very blessings someone is praying for day and night. Celebrating and counting our blessings fuels our faith. Remember what God is doing in your life as an individual, your family, friends, church, community, country and the world at large and let Him know you are grateful. 

So this week I went for a program at church and during the program, I was worried about some money I needed to do some things. Though my Dad gave me the money, I needed some to top up. While I sat at the back listening to the sermon being preached, the minister said ‘gratitude makes our blessings whole’. Luke 17:12-14. Just then, the Holy Spirit reminded me of Philippians 4:6 and He asked me to remember the write up I was working on which was this very one. So I counted my blessing, which was the money my Dad gave to me and I laid my worry before Him. Not long a song was raised by the minister, as I stood up to sing, an elder called me and gave me money which was the exact money I needed. I was surprised because I just finished praying not long ago and my elder was not even close to me to listen to my prayers and moreover I didn’t pray aloud. But as I counted my blessings and gave thanks to God, He completed it as the pastor mentioned earlier. 

Let us therefore cultivate the habit of counting our blessings daily, weekly, monthly and always and not only when it’s getting to the end of the year. May the Holy Spirit help and strengthen us to do this always and not only during good times. 

On that note I count you as part of my blessings for your prayers and support especially through reading,  commenting and sharing my articles. God bless you. 

YOU ARE THE ANSWER

One of the things we do which pleases God is when we pray for others during our personal or cooperate prayers according to 2 Timothy 2:1. I love to pray for others during my personal prayers even though it’s not easy sometimes. You might be doing this at the expense of your personal prayers. Sometimes I don’t even feel the desire or strength to pray but yet still I do it. I know you also go through such challenges. But I just want to encourage you to continue praying, for our prayers are the solutions to the problems of many.

Coming back home after school, I realised that, some workers were helping our co-tenant who owned a food joint and they mostly work from dawn to dusk. So I decided to help them by praying for strength for them, they had children too. These young children mostly disturb them when they are working and this causes a lot of distractions and delays in their work.
Days after, the children started hanging around me, they will stay for long and sometimes they’ll sleep at my place. I realized that anytime they were around me, it reduced the pressure on their mothers and this also helps them to focus on their work. This has taught me that, there are times as we are praying to God to help or support others in their situations, He would want to use us as the answers or solutions. He is depending on us to provide the solution or the help.
Maybe you might be praying to God for a good life for your parents as they are ageing, and He is also saying you can spend some quality time with them and give them much attention as you stay away from the phone for a while. You might say God help this country develop and He might be saying don’t litter your surroundings and also outside your home when you’re out. Father help my church grow well to fulfil its mandate might have been your prayer at church last Sunday and just then, He said serving in the ushering department or help in the cleaning of the premises. Save my friend from sin or restore his or her relationship with You and just then or later the Holy Spirit tells you, tell him about my love for him and share with him how I helped you when you were struggling with yours.
Truth be told, it will not be easy doing these things looking at the fact that they may be new to us or we might have tried them severally and failed. It’s not easy leaving that interesting conversation happening on your WhatsApp group or Twitter only to start a conversation with your parents, siblings or your friends. It may not look nice folding that sachet of the water you drank into your pocket or even your new purse only because you want to help make the country clean. Foregoing your time and comfort to help clean the church and usher members or go for rehearsal when you have friends to hang out with at that same time won’t be desirable. But our Father won’t ask us to do anything He hasn’t already provided for. I was listening to a sermon https://youtu.be/3EF9tgG0DLU by Mike Todd and one of the lessons I learnt is to respond what God wants me to do. As I obey, I become the solution to the problems around me.

Jonah 3:10 When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he had compassion and did not bring upon them the destruction he had threatened. (NIV) A whole town was saved just because Jonah obeyed to follow. Many are the things that will happen if we obey what the Holy Spirit is telling us to do.
In our obedience lies the solution to the problems of others or things around us. So say a prayer for someone today and always, and be willing to obey God if you’re the answer.

TREASURES IN DISGUISE.

Hello my loves! I wish I could say I went on a sabbatical and that’s the reason I’ve been away for so long. Let’s just say it’s not always easy to keep everything balanced when you want to. Amazing news is that I’m back now and by God’s grace back to consistency. I hope y’all are good! Let’s talk about something really fascinating.

“What can I do to help you?” Elisha asked. “Tell me, what do you have in the house?” “Nothing at all, except a flask of olive oil,” she replied.
2 Kings 4:2 NLT


          During one of our family Bible studies at home, during the lock down, we discussed a very important topic. Looking at this scripture from verse 1 to 7, you’ll learn a lot. So here was a wife of a deceased man seeking for help from Elisha, there was a debt left behind by her husband  which needed to be paid  else her sons become slaves in the lender’s house. 

As a  loving mother, she decided to seek help. When she met Elisha, he asked her what she had at home and she responded “Nothing but I do have a little oil”

  Come to think of it, why did the widow initially say she had nothing only to mention the oil after that? Probably because of the quantity of the oil and its significance in the situation. But you’ll realize that it was this same little oil that saved her sons and the family at large. It was not only about the oil but also her faith in God and also obeying every word said by the prophet Elisha. 

           Just like the little oil in the jar, there are little oil hidden in us. We know some of them and others, we are yet to discover. It can be that gift of writing, singing, dancing, public speaking, that business idea, gifts of the Holy Spirit, dress making, fashion design, healing, etc.

But since they  are little just like the little oil, we do not recognize or appreciate them. They may be little and insignificant but these are treasures hidden in us. Let us not concentrate on the quantity and the container but rather the content. For when we focus on the quantity and the container, we will limit ourselves. 

            So let’s begin to put value on the little oil in us. One important thing is that, she obeyed every word on how to use it to produce the results she wanted. So as we approach God with our little oil, He will instruct us on how to use the gifts which will not only save us but most importantly others and the world at large. His instructions maybe different from that of others and may also not be what you are used to or what you want, but we just have to trust and obey. 

              Moreover, it was God who deposited these treasures in us and He is the only one who will help us to as to how to identify it and how use it. And as we use them,  we must use them to bring glory to the Father and not ourselves for the glory of man fades away. 

WORRIES INTO GOD.

If there’s anyone who desires our all (our attention, time, resources, pleasures, worship, etc) then it is our Heavenly Father. Our Heavenly Father is one who longs for our all to be directed towards Him. When we do this, He also pours out all of Himself upon us.

But when we carefully look at our lives, we will realize that we are either offering only part or nothing at all unto the Lord. The rest of our all are offered to some inferior things. Some of these are our problems, worries, fears, and uncertainties.

We give these things a lot of our time, emotions, resources, energy, worship, Thanksgiving. These things, in the long run, have become our God. Where we devote ourselves and everything to them. They are the first things we think about when we wake up and the last things that take us into our sleep. Late at night, they wake us up from our sleep. Where we deliberate on these worries for a long time. Unlike previously when the Holy Spirit wakes us up to pray or fellowship with Him but now we have replaced Him with these problems. During the day, they fill our minds, emotions, and thoughts where they wage war against our inner peace.

We even know our problem far better than our God. We can describe them very well with a lot of attributes than our Heavenly Father. To the extent that we cling to them and don’t even want to come an inch close to the love and promises of God.

We all face problems in life, but do they really deserve what we give to them? Do they need to take God’s place in our lives? Do they need our all? But today, as you read this, the Lord is calling us back to Him. He wants us to turn our worries, heartbreak, tomorrow’s uncertainties, problems, darkest sins towards Him. He longs for our fellowship, time, attention, resources, emotions, etc. He wants us to take good care of us even as we do this.

Matthew 6: 27“Has anyone by fussing(worrying) in front of the mirror ever gotten taller by so much as an inch? Worrying adds no value to our lives but rather gives us a lot of reasons to conclude that God is incapable of solving our problems. The more we worry, the less we trust God.

1 Peter 5:7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you What God wants His beloved to do is to direct their problems and needs towards Him their King and Father who is not limited by anything. So instead of carrying our loads, let’s bring it before our Father. And how do we do that? One of the ways is to Pray(communicating with God and giving Him acess into our situations) about what you are battling with. Despite God knowing our problems, He still wants us to tell Him about it. Talking to Him about it is also part of the healing process. Philippians 4:6-7 Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. 

            Our Heavenly Father is ever willing to turn our worries into a heart full of joy and happiness as we turn our worrying into praying. So turn that which is worrying you into prayer today and your Loving Father will answer and help you out according to His will for you. Matthew 7:11 If you then, evil as you are, know how to give good and advantageous gifts to your children, how much more will your Father Who is in heaven [perfect as He is] give good and advantageous things to those who keep on asking Him!

EXPOSE IT ALL TO HIM.

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Before everything else, I want you to receive my apologies for the delay in the release of a new piece. I faced some challenges which affected the publication of my write-ups. Pardon me.

But here we are with a whole new piece and I pray it blesses you.

So ever shared a secret with a friend you trust? What was the feeling? Kind of safe and relieving? There were many others but you chose that very person because you believe he/she could keep your secret. Better still help you out with the problem and maybe because you know telling that person will not be embarrassing or shameful as it will be with the others. Sometimes to prevent all these embarrassments, humiliations and shame, we just keep everything to ourselves. We feel it’s safe to keep our pain and shame locked up inside no matter how it hurts.

We all at a point, face situation that we don’t know how to handle them. Why don’t we just open up to someone at times? We are scared of how things will turn out. It’s either those we confined in will fail us or there may be some sort of punishment.

Growing up, I went to the corn mill once to get some corn grinded. During the process of grinding, I became so curious about knowing what was in the mill, grinding the corn. So, I decided to put my hand where the powder was coming from. Before I realized, I heard a sound and then felt a sharp pain. It was one of my fingers. I quickly took it out only to realized that I had a deep cut. That was when the owner of the mill who was my friend realized I was hurt. He had to stop what he was doing to give me some first aid. I was deeply hurt. I didn’t go home early and on my way home, I placed my hand in my pocket to prevent anyone from noticing what happened to me. I did all I could that evening to prevent my parents from knowing because I was scared I was going to be punished.

It was the next day that the corn mill owner came around to tell my parents what happened the previous day. My mom was surprised I didn’t tell her what happened to me. I explained I was embarrassed and scared and that was why I kept it to myself. We all at a point go through situations or problems and worries and we don’t know how to handle them because of the nature of man. He/she is one person today and another tomorrow. But can I recommend a very special person to you?

Once you are still reading, it means you really want to know that person. He is so special that, He is the only one who can be trusted in this world. Faithful is His name. His name is JESUS CHRIST.

Let me tell you something special about Him. He loves us so much that no matter how the situations may look, He is ever present to be of help. He longs for us so much more than a mother longs for her new born baby. No matter how dirty we are or how deep we are sinking or dirty our sins may look, His desire for us never ceases. He waits for us patiently to carry our burdens for us. (Mat 11:28 ISV “come to me all of you who are weary and loaded down with burdens, and I will give you rest ˮ) He also promised to give us whatsoever we want or need. Yes anything. (John 14: 13-14 I will do whatsoever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14. If you ask me for anything in my name, I will do it.). He even promised to send us a helper (Holy Spirit) who will help us in all things. And you know, He needs not to be in a good mood before we can approach Him and then tell Him our plight or that which troubles us neither do we need to book an appointment before we can see Him nor do we need airtime before talking to Him. And there is no specific time that He is available, He is always available 24/7 no matter where or what we might be doing.

So, what is it that troubles you day and night and it seems there is no one you can trust and talk to? Which load are you carrying that seems so heavy for you? What is that secret sin that has entrapped you and you don’t know how to break free from? What is that embarrassing or shameful burden or trouble that is upon you and you feel like sharing with someone, but you don’t know the perfect person to share it with?

Jesus is ever willing to carry our burdens and problems not with us but for us. He so longs and waits for us. In Luke 15:11-22, talks about the prodigal son who wasted part of his life. But when he realized his mistakes, he decided to go back home. In verse 20-21, the Bible says while he was still far away, his father saw him. When he saw him, he didn’t despise him but rather, he was filled with love and compassion. And that wasn’t all, this old man run to meet his dear son and not only that, he embraced him and kissed him. This shows how his father loved and cherished him despite all he has done. That is how Jesus also loves and waits for us, even much more than that of the old man. We only need to make a step by telling him our secrets sins, worries, pains, burdens, etc. and He will run to carry them for us and give us a good treat just like that which was done for the prodigal son. We just need to come to Him just as we are and lay our troubles before Him and He will take good care of us as He has and still doing for others.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS.

photo-1517244649640-fcacab5ce213      “Terms and conditions apply”; we have come across these words on several occasions.We do hear them on the radio,watch them on TV,see them on the internet, newspapers,magazines or elsewhere.And these normally come up during promotions or advertisements.
      During these promotions and advertisements,interesting offers or packages pop up which most people feel interested in and are eager to participate in them.But sometimes,once we hear “Terms and Conditions Apply”or after hearing what the “Terms and Conditions”entail,we lose interest in them.At the end,even though we were all interested in winning the price,only few  take up the crown.These few take up the crown because they accepted the “Terms and Conditions”and complied with them.
     Such are the Blessings,breakthroughs, favors, etc. we seek from God.Even though most of us are Christians,only a few have accepted and are acting according to the “Terms and Conditions”of God and they are prospering.The question now is,what are God’s “Terms and Conditions?”The terms and conditions of God is the Bible.This is the book that contains all we need in life and this is our life manual.It holds the dos and don’ts of life.This is the book that teaches us how to gain prosperity just as it is in Joshua 1:8.”This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.” 
     We sometimes want God to bless or change our situation,but we aren’t willing to accept His “Terms and Conditions”. Some of us after receiving the blessings or breakthroughs we prayed for,then our lifestyle or attitude changes.And just as some students lose their scholarship packages due to change in lifestyle other than what is expected from them,so shall we lose our blessings if we begin to live differently from what is expected of us.
     So here is a young graduate who has been going round the capital just to find a very good job to cater for himself and his family.But everyday on his way out,he meets this beggar who asks him for money to buy food and cater for his poor children.But this graduate has no compassion for them and always passes by.Mean while,this same graduate prays to God always to give him a job but he isn’t willing to give out to the poor forgetting that in Luke 6:38″give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.“God wants us to give if we also want to receive from Him.
    Here is also a woman who has been married for five years without a child.She fasts and prays every week but has so much hatred for her stepchild and always mistreat her.But in Luke 10:27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”,we are encouraged to love all,no matter what.
     So in life,if we want our desires or prayers to be answered,then we must also be ready and willing to meet and comply with God’s “Terms and Conditions”. And we can’t do this on our own, we need the Holy Spirit to help us just as it is in Zachariah 4:6 Then he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of hosts. He is the one who can help us fulfill the scriptures.

The Transformer.

Hi ,am privileged to introduce to you my first article. I pray the Spirit speaks and transform  you even as you read.

Enjoy.

There are a lot of things that the Spirit introduces to us once we receive Him. And one of them is He speaks on our behalf.

     ACTS 4
      In Acts 4,Peter and John were arrested and brought before the rulers and elders. But they were not scared.
When the Holy Spirit fills our life ,He makes sure we just don’t say as a word of mouth but also in our actions. In Matthew 10:18-20
And ye shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them and the Gentiles. [19] But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. [20] For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.” ,the Bible is assuring us not to be scared when we go for evangelism, we come before those in authority, kings or even our managers or CEOs to speak. Because, the Spirit that lives in us will speak through us.
       Just like Peter who did not go for any public speaking lessons but was able to speak before the rulers of the people and the elders and they were astonished because they perceived them to be uneducated,so will the Spirit also speak on our behalf.

Today, the scripture is assuring us that ,the next time we go for evangelism ,for a job interview, meet our managers or CEOs,debate,public speaking or anything doing with speaking ,we shouldn’t be scared or intimidated .All we have to do is to call and Rely on Him and He will work through us

 

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