Tuesday, 1 November 2011

HOLD ON CHANGE IS COMING

 EZEKIEL 12:28
Therefore say to them, 'Thus says the Lord GOD, "None of My words will be delayed any longer. Whatever word I speak will be performed,"'" declares the Lord GOD.

I was really blessed by this scripture last night in our intercessory prayer session in Church and I couldn't help it but to share it with you my beloved sisters and brothers in Christ. I don't know what word the Lord has spoken concerning your family, marriage, career, work children, business, ministry or relationship. However whatever it is, I came to encourage and to remind us that the Lord says; no longer will His words delay any longer. Whatever word He has spoken He will perform without delay and speedily declares the Lord Almighty. So wipe your tears and don't give up not just yet because change is coming - Restoration without limts, Amen!

However, whilst we are waiting in expectancy lets continue to exercise our faith by feeding our spirit the Word as we remain attentive and sensitive to His instructions for the delivery of our long awaited package to the glory of His Name. Wow, what a Mighty God we serve, how merciful and gracious He is in all His ways! Rejoice my sisters and brothers, rejoice for affliction shall not rise up the second time.......!

VERSE FOR MEDITATION:

You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never again be put to shame.-- Joel 2:26

2011 by Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Monday, 31 October 2011

YOU ARE NOT ALONE

 Isaiah 41:10
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." 

As Christians and humans, it is perfectly okay for us to feel less than perfect at times. It is okay to feel sad, and feel hopeless. It is okay to feel alone, and wishing someone was by our side holding our hands through some of this lives harsh realities. Don't get me wrong I say this because, I feel all these too until I decided to entrust my life and surrender it all to the Author and finisher of my Faith - Jesus. And since then, my life couldn't better.

I came to encourage you to take comfort in today's scripture and allow the words and promise of Jesus to fill your heart with all surety that you are never alone. God is always by our side, and during our best and worst of moments, we need to remember that. Let today's verse be a comfort to you and your loved ones for years to come.


2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

HE IS FAITHFUL

 1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all 
unrighteousness.

Today I came to encourage and to remind you that, I don't care what you have done or what your past is. God does not want you and I to hold on to or struggle with sin in our lives. He want us to live obediently to His word. However, when we stumble He also teaches us to repent from our sins by confessing it and turning away from it by making a 180 degress turn not 360.  As we do, He instantly forgives us because He is faithful and gracious in all His ways towards us His children.


By confessing, He offers us purity through His forgiveness wiping everything clean and remembers it no more. Nothing we can do on our own can purify us, even if we tried so hard. This because we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God but through Jesus Christ, we have been redeemed and made heirs to the Kingdom of God. This Jesus Christ did by exchanging and trading in our filthy rags and sins on the cross for His righteousness - wow what a privilege and an honour!

All this because He wants us to be in a right relationship with God our heavenly Father. So my dear sisters and brothers in Christ, do not ever think you are not worthy of being forgiven because you and I may struggle at times with the same type of sin. But as we repent, we also learn to ask God work in us both to will and to work His good pleasure by resisting that sin next time ( Philippians 2:13 with emphasis added). This helps us to become stronger and stronger  to resist temptation to sin in the future.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Just remember His is faithful and His word cannot be broken.

VERSE FOR MEDITATION:

who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.--Titus 2:14

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Monday, 12 September 2011

DELIGHT IN THE LORD

Psalms 37:5
Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.

For any of us who will sincerely put our trust in the Lord by committing our lives to Him, God’s strength and comfort is available to help us in our time of need. God knows that we will stumble at times by not completely walking in His ways. God is merciful, loving, forgiving and kind. For a moment, we may feel or even think, that we have fallen away from the Lord, this is not true. Once we commit our liives to the Lord, His strong hand is always reaching out to us to help us stay on a firm ground, He will hold us up when we stumble.

As children of the most High God, we need to come to the understanding and the knowledge that God is able to care for our every need better than we can for ourselves. We should patiently wait in the Lord (Psalm 37:7) to work out what He has predestined for our lives in Him. Today, I want to encourage us all to allow ourselves to experience the great pleasure and joy found only in the presence of the Lord. Spend time to get to know Him  better today because having knowledge of His unfailing love towards us will indeed give us His great pleasure and unspeakable joy, Amen!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
To commit ourselves to the Lord means entrusting everything in our lives to Him e.g, families, careers, businesses, jobs, ministries relationships to His control and guidance.

VERSE FOR MEDITATION:
Commit to the LORD whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.--Proverbs 16:3

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

DO YOU HAVE PASSION FOR CHRIST?

Luke 19:10
Indeed, the Son of Man has come to seek and to save people who are lost."

Do you have a passion for Christ? If you do then you will have a passion for the lost. Jesus was and is all about saving souls. We are the channel in which God has chosen to communicate His love and saving power through. Remember that learning to ride a bike takes practice and so does learning how to be a witness for Christ. We must become passionate and determined to be a soul winner. Ask God for the passion and then begin to study about witnessing.

Here are a few scriptures to get you started.
Romans 10:14,15  Romans 1:16 Second peter 3:9 Acts 4:31 Acts 14:3 Acts 19:8

2011 Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

LIVING A GODLY LIFE IS POSSIBLE

2 Peter 1:3
By his divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life. We have received all of this by coming to know him, the one who called us to himself by means of his marvelous glory and excellence.


Living a godly life is possible because of the knowledge we have of God. This knowledge is acquired, daily, as we read the bible and seek after building a personal relationship with God. As we study God’s word, and spend time in prayer, we will obtain the knowledge we need to be victorious in our lives. Everyday requires new spiritual truths for the new situations and trials we will be faced with. What we learned yesterday, may not be what we need for today. Today, I will not be a quitter, because the bible says that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. This verse brings comfort and peace within me today, so I will cling to it. What the Lord has for me tomorrow may be completely different, however my focus is on what He has for me today!


VERSE FOR MEDITATION:
The Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.” Then Judas (not Judas Iscariot) said, “But, Lord, why do you intend to show yourself to us and not to the world?”Jesus replied, “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.-- John 14:17-23

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved. 

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

THE POWER OF A PROMISE

 Acts 5:42
Every day in the temple courtyard and from house to house, they refused to stop teaching and telling the Good News that Jesus is the Messiah.
 

Have you considered making a promise today to the Lord to tell someone about Him? We often make and keep our promises to a friend to go to the movies, the theathre, shopping or spend time doing just about anything that they or we want us to do with them. Today, why don't you and I make our promise to Jesus to introduce Him to someone and then do our best to follow through with our promise to share what He has done for us with them.

VERSE FOR MEDITATION:
Through him and for his name's sake, we received grace and apostleship to call people from among all the Gentiles to the obedience that comes from faith.--ROMANS 1:5

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

BEING RENEWED

Isaiah 40:31
But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

I don't know about you but for me as summer is nearly coming to an end, I am eagerly looking forward to Autumn one of my favourite seasons. For me autumn is a season of change and of new beginnings. The air is fresh with cool breezes and clear skies where nature is at it's best. One the flip side this also happens to be the time when most of us start re accessing our goals for the year and this comes with lots of anxiety, sleepless nights and with lots of surprises.  However, none of these things are a surprise to God. Why? Because He is aware of all the changes taking place in the natural realm and so is He is aware of the ones in our personal lives too. Just as nature yields itself to God's wisdom I want to encourage you and I to yield ourselves to God's perfect plan and timing for our lives especially in this season we are about to enter  no matter what or where we might find yourself.

I call this time  "the meantime" season and I am encouraged by today's scripture that says, "But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint." As we are about to enter into this new season lets be in expectant as God renews our strength by ushering us into our new beginnings and giving us a fresh start in our careers, relationships, jobs, ministries as new gifting are birthed to His glory. Don't let yourself be pressurised by others or the circumstances you find yourself in. Instead be encouraged to enjoy the process of waiting on the Lord and watch Him transform your life as He works on you and through you for His glory.

The Bible says in Isaiah 41:13, "For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you." This is a promise I choose to hold dear in my heart as I look forward to greater and new things in Him. Yesterday is history, but today is a treasure to cherish because with God all things are possible and He is not man that He will lie neither can the scriptures be broken. Today is the beginning of new and better things to come!

VERSE FOR MEDITATION:
“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.  As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, 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 55:8-11

2011 by enyonam gbekle. all rights reserved.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

SERCET STORES

John 10:10
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

For me, each day is a day of new beginnings and a gift to cherish no matter what might be going on around me or the world we live in as a whole. Today's scripture tells us the thief only comes to steal, kill and to destroy however Jesus came so that we might have life and live to in abundance. This clearly implies, we have the choice to choose either to allow the enemy to steal this precious gift called life been freely given to us by Jesus or to life it in abundance to His glory.

The Bible also says in Colossians 2:3, "In whom are all the secret stores of wisdom and knowledge." For you and I to access the secret stores of God's wisdom and knowledge, we will have to diligently seek after Him with all our heart, soul and mind through our faith in Christ Jesus. Look at today as an adventure and remember God knows the plans He has for you even before you were formed in your mothers womb.

Today, lets challenge ourselves by going on this exciting expedition to experience and discover some of the wonderful and beautiful secrets He has in store for us. I know He desires for us to, so lets keep our eyes, ears and heart open in expectant. Each new day is a journey of discovery and of new beginnings but most importantly lets remember to bring someone along with us to share the many secrets and wonders of God with them.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Life is a gift so cherish each moment of it. Because, Jesus purposefully died on the cross so through His death you might have and live it life in abundance!

VERSE FOR MEDITATION:
I will go before you and will level the mountains; I will break down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron. I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, who summons you by name.---Isaiah 45:2-3

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Friday, 19 August 2011

WALKING IN LIGHT

1 John 1:6-7
If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.


Today lets choose to walk in the light of God, the revealed knowledge of His word. Walking with God is always a matter of choice. Making a choice to follow God’s way or our own way. Deuteronomy 30:19, "Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live!"  Walk in the light that God has prepared for you to walk in so your descendants can live a blessed and a fulfilled life in Christ.


WORD FOR THE DAY:
But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness; he does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded him.--1 John 2:11


2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Thursday, 18 August 2011

POWER OF CHRIST

Ephesians 4:1-2
I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love.



This is just enough for you and I to focus on for today!! Only by the power of Christ in us are we able to live this way.

VERSE FOR MEDITATION:
For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love. --Ephesians 1:4

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

WHAT MASK ARE YOU WEARING?

 Mark 9:24b
With tears flowing, the child's father at once cried out, "I do believe! Help my unbelief!" 


One of the lessons I am continuing learning is humility. Like a lot of us Believers we there are times when we think we are humble until we face a challenging situation that threatens our strength and confidence in who we are, what we do, what we think we are good at or are expects in. A few weeks ago, I suddenly starting felt a sense of sadness griping into my heart and for the life of me didn't have a clue what brought it on and why. As usual, I just brushed it off and ignored it rather than going to God in prayer and asking for help as to how to get the root cause of this sudden slow sadness. You see, when one has suffered in silence as for many years as I have during most of my adult life, one becomes good at wearing a mask.  And even when we come to the knowledge of who God really is we still wear mask. Except this time, we wear what I call "the Holy mask" or "the good Christian mask".

What today's scripture has taught me is, I don't have to wear any kind of mask; instead it's okay to ask God for help when I am having difficulty with unbelief and lacking in my faith. Because Faith is an attitude of trust and confidence of things we hope for and an assurance of what we have not seen but believe. So then it implies it isn't something we can obtain without help because the Bible tells us in Hebrews 11:6, "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." To earnestly seek God means sincere, or with serious intent to obtain wisdom, knowledge and understanding of God not only that but to live by them in our daily lives as Believers.

No matter how much faith we may think we have, we can never reach the point of self-sufficient because faith is a constant process of a daily renewing of our trust and confidence in Jesus by reading our Bible and asking Him for guidance and understanding through prayer. I am learning each day to humble myself before my heavenly Father for help to increase my faith and unbelief when I find myself in challenging situations. This type of prayer for me is a way of surrendering to God all of our weaknesses so He can then become strong. That's faith in action.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Ask it shall be given unto you!


2011 by Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Monday, 15 August 2011

JUST WAIT!

Revelation 3:8
'I know what you've been doing. Look! I have put in front of you an open door that no one can shut. You have only a little strength, but you have obeyed my word and have not denied my name.

Sometimes the door of opportunities may seems to be shut, but God is telling you and I today that He has put in front of us a door that is open and no one can shut it. Not only that, our obedience and service has not gone unnoticed. Wow, Hallelujah! For as long as we don't stagger at His word but rather keep holding on fast to it through our faith, we will live to see and live our breakthroughs for His will and  His word to accomplished in our lives.

Living in the meantime is that simple neither is it that easy, however I am still leanring and have come to the understanding that the grass may seem greener else where but it is actually only greener when it is watered with His word and nurtured with our faith.  When that door opens, everything about it will be made clear by God without anything standing in our way. He has promised never to leave us. And His presence that comforts us is the hope that strengthens us to endure the waiting.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Waiting on God is about trust and perseverance holding firm unto His revealed word without a doubt in our heart. It's also called the test of our faith!

VERSES FOR MEDITATION:
And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.--Hebrews 11:6

but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.--Isaiah 40:31

2011 by Enyonam Gbekle. all rights reserved.



Friday, 12 August 2011

WHAT TYPE OF FRUIT IS YOUR LIFE BEARING?

 2 Corinthians 13:5
Examine yourselves to see whether you are still in the Christian faith. Test yourselves! Don't you recognize that you are people in whom Jesus Christ lives? Could it be that you're failing the test?

Many of us call ourselves Christians; lets examine ourselves to see if we are still in the faith. Jesus said that we are known by the fruit we bear as His children.  “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." (John 13:35) That’s the very best of the good fruit. Sexual immorality, drunkenness, greed, hatred, and unforgiveness, just to name a few, are considered to be bad fruit. What type of fruit is your life producing? Calling ourselves a Christian and bearing the fruits of a Christian is very different. Many of us will say to the Lord when we die, I did this and that in your name and He will say depart from me, I never knew you.

Please don't examine others actions and how they live their lives but look into your own today! Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. For God wants your life to resemble a healthy fruit tree. Remain blessed!

VERSES FOR MEDITATION:
We can't allow ourselves to get tired of living the right way. Certainly, each of us will receive everlasting life at the proper time, if we don't give up.--Galatians 6:9

Finally, brothers, we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living. Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more.--1 Thessalonians 4:1

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

WHAT SEEDS ARE PLANTING?

John 4:37-38
'One sows and another reaps' is true. I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor."

One of the ways to have a beautiful garden of pretty flourishing flowers is to prepare the soil, plant the seeds, water them tenderly and lovingly care for them. Believers, we are responsible for the planting of the seeds of God's love into the lives of unbelievers so that there will be a harvest of souls to reap.  The reason is, in order for there to be a continuing harvest; there must be a continual planting. Some people are easy to witness to; this can be compared to moist prepared soil and others are more difficult, which would compare to the harder ground that requires more effort to plant the seed into.

My prayer is that throughout our nations, there will be a great sowing of good seeds. My intention is to let it begin with me today. Think about the many types of seeds there are in your hands and how they can be sown into the lives of the unbelievers we come cross. Here are some hints; make use of Gospel tracts, music and messages Cd's and serving others. Remember too, that there are false teachers sowing weeds, we must do our part to sow the truth of God’s word.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
Ask your self, where will I be if someone hadn't sow the seed of God's love in your life?

VERSES FOR MEDITATION:
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.--John 3:17

For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me.--John 17:8

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

DON'T PANIC

John16:33
These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

Life sometimes is and most times very difficult, that is just the way life is. However today, God wants you and I to know He will give us joy through and after the difficult times that we experience (Psalm 126:5,"They that sow in tears shall reap in joy."). I know you are probably saying, what I am suppose to do in the meant time? He wants you to just relax and be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God the conqueror of the world and the universe (Philippians 4:6 with emphasis added).

All Jesus is trying to say to you, yes I mean you is that He knows exactly everything your going through and the effect its having on you and your frustration of not being able to do anything right this minute. He says it's okay, I am with you, I am your protector, I have a winning plan, trust me, just relax, smile and be cheerful because I have already taken care of what is happening even before it started - its all under control1. Don't panic, just relax! For all those of us who live in England, I want to encourage us all not to panic but instead with thanksgiving lets make our request known to God through our prayers. The Bible says in James 5:16b, "The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much." So join me as we stand together in faith to pray for England especially the youth - our future leaders in the making. God is faithful!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
If we keep putting our trust in the Lord, God promises songs of joy will come when we least expect it.

VERSES FOR MEDITATION:
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.--Romans 8:37

But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. 2 Corinthians 2:14

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Monday, 8 August 2011

FRUSTRATED AND EXHAUSTED?

Psalm 32:5a
I acknowledged my sin to You, And my iniquity I did not hide; I said, "I will confess my transgressions to the LORD"

Are you frustrated, exhausted and living an unfufilled Christian life? This was the picture of my life for many many years even though I confessed Jesus as my Lord and personal saviour. Why? Because I didn't leave behind my old life of sinfulness neither did I completely put my hope and total trust in Him. The honest truth is, God intends our life to be lived to the fullest, where He alone can make our joy complete. And the only way to live this life -  is to put our trust and hope in Him alone by turning our hearts completely towards Him, leaving our sin behind. Paul teaches us in  2 Corinthians 5:17, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."

Today, Jesus is calling us to a repentant heart by turning 180 degrees from our sins instead of 360 going back and forth in the circle of repentance. I want to encourage you and I not to live a cheap Christian life by flirting with sin and calls on God when things become too exhausting causing us to be frustrated and unfilled. Join me and let us escape the revolving circle of repentance together by asking God's help to change our heart of the issues that we struggle with repeatedly.Remember, His grace is sufficient for us and His power is made perfect in our weaknesses.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:
 True repentance is turning 180 degrees away from sin..... Don't allow sin to rob of you your blessings!


VERSE FOR MEDITATION:
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.-- 1 John 1:9
If they obey and serve him, they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity and their years in contentment.-- Job 36:11
2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reseved.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

THE MARK OF A CHANGED PERSON



Based on Mark 5:1-20, this explosive Word of deliverance is a clarion call to the Body of Christ designed to challenge, educate and empower the believer in their understanding of the supernatural. Receive your authority to walk in liberty, victory and transformation through the Lord Jesus Christ!

Thursday, 4 August 2011

EXAMINE YOUR SPOKEN WORDS

James 3:9
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God's likeness.

Have you ever tried so hard from saying the wrong thing but you just couldn't, and some how to your surprise the wrong thing just pops out of your mouth even before you could think? Well I have on so many occasions and if you are honest with yourself, you will admit you have too. The Bible calls the tongue "an unruly evil and full of deadly poison."  I am so horrified just the thought of knowing that with this same tongue, I offer my praises unto the Lord and in the same breathe I curse others who are made not in any others likeness but the Lord Almighty. Hmmmm, Lord have mercy on me!

I know from my own experience that when I became born-again; I automatically expected an instant change in my action, spoken words, attitude and judgements of others. However,  this is possible "but only" through complete dependence and reliance on the Holy Spirit through our total surrender - our free will. Why? Because the Bible teaches us in Philippians 2:13, "For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure."  So it doesn't matter how hard we try, it's got to be on God's terms not ours. James clearly outlines into detail the harm, evil and damage this very tinny part of our of our body called the tongue can cause to our entire body - James 3:6, "The tongue is a fire, a world of evil. Placed among the parts of our bodies, the tongue contaminates the whole body and sets on fire the course of life, and is itself set on fire by hell."

Today I want to remind us all that before we open our mouths to say anything to anyone, lets examine the thoughts of our minds and hearts before allowing the words to flow from our mouth. Because an abusive conversation can undermine the power of ours prayers and our sacrifice of praise to the Lord. I am learning daily not to beat myself up too much about certain things because I know I can't always control what I hear, but I can control what I hold dear in my heart and what I say to others. It's time for you and I to learn to daily submit our total will to God for He is the only one who can cause us to do will and do His good pleasure by knowing when to say what and when not to.

Food for thought:
Before you pass along any information that could hurt someone today, ask yourself; Does this need to be said, or do I just want to say it? Would more harm come by saying it or not saying it? If it needs to be said, am I saying it with the right intentions?

Verses for meditation:
"for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh."-- Matthew 12:34b

Don't say anything that would hurt [another person]. Instead, speak only what is good so that you can give help wherever it is needed. That way, what you say will help those who hear you.--Ephesians 4:29

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

STARTING AFRESH

 Hebrews 10:22
Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.


Today God is extending an invitation to you and I His children to draw new to Him with a true heart of praise, prayer and worship with every confidence without the filling of guilt for what we have or not done. My Pastor (David Antwi) consistently says our worship and service to God is a heart thing. A sincerer heart is all He requires that is why the enemy tries so hard to keep our hearts contaminated with unforgiveness, guilt, bitterness, strife and all sorts of junk so we will not feel worthy of God's unconditional and unfailing love towards us.

The text went on to say and with "full assurance" this means with all confidence of our faith not staggering at His word but knowing that if He lay down His life which was without sin in exchanged for our filthy rags ("But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away."--Isaiah 64:6) for His righteousness so we can have an intimate and personal relationship with God.  wow, what are we waiting for? He has done too much for you and I for us to feel intimidated or doubt Him in any way. Any doubt or fear is not of Him but of the enemy who is constantly looking for someone to devour.

I came to tell you God has sent you a VIP invitation to draw near to Him with a sincerer true heart and be cleansed because He does not want you to remain separated from Him for what you have or not done Don't keep Him waiting, as He awaits patiently with love to touch and purify our lives. And as you do, just remember the key is to be sincere in heart by turning from sin and choosing to get back on the righteous path.

Food for thought:
All it takes is that first step of faith with a sincerer heart of repentance.............

Verses for meditation:
In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.--Ephesians 3:12

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,--1 Peter 1:3

God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged.--Hebrews 6:18

2011 Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Monday, 1 August 2011

LIFE OF PRAISE

Psalms 145:2
Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.

Yesterday in our service during a time of praise, I had an experience and an encounter with the Lord that even as this morning haven't still recovered from. wow, what was all that about? Something definitely happens when we spend time just worshipping and praising God. Because it doesn't only pleases Him, our heart is filled with His spirit and delivers us from anything that isn't of Him bringing us total freedom and peace in Him. I have heard my Pastor said on numerous occasions of how King David praised God so much that even till today heaven hasn't recovered from it. As we read and study the life and account of  King David,  it's no secret that he was one of the most successful and highly favoured Kings that ever lived and not only that leaving a legacy that has outlast many generations. No wonder he was called the man after God's own heart. Because he lived a life dedicated to praising God in all circumstances and situations whether good or bad.


Being dedicated to living a life filled with praise towards God is what we should be practicing as Believers and disciples of Christ. From the moment we arise in the morning, praises should be continually on our lips throughout our day. Whether life is going well or not, we should be lifting up the name of Jesus. After all the end of our earthly destination is secure; we will spend eternity in Heaven., Isn't that enough reason for us to continually praise Him? When we make a conscious effort to focus on the goodness of God, our problems will fade into the brilliant light of all that He has done for us. Every time l begin to tell someone of the many ways that God has revealed to me, I get excited. Take a moment to just focus on God's goodness and give Him praise for another day of life. Today, praise God by sharing with someone the great things that God has done.

Food for thought:
Remember the more we find reasons and things to praise Him for the easier we will praise our way out of whatever seems impossible in our lives. the Bible says in Psalm 35:27b, "The LORD be exalted, who delights in the well-being of his servant." Isn't this enough reason to praise Him today?

Verses to meditate on:
My mouth will speak in praise of the LORD. Let every creature praise his holy name for ever and ever.--Psalm 145:21
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding. To him belongs eternal praise.--Psalm 111:10


The LORD within her is righteous; he does no wrong. Morning by morning he dispenses his justice, and every new day he does not fail, yet the unrighteous know no shame.-- Zephaniah 3:5

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Friday, 29 July 2011

TRUST AND OBEY

Genesis 6:8
“But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord”


At the time of Noah God was displeased with man and he wanted to wipe out the entire human race, they did not have favour (grace) in his eyes. They were engaging in all sorts of immorality which greatly displeased God. However Noah found favour with God despite the disobedience of those around him – he was not influenced by his environment. Favour sets you apart – when everyone around you is being ‘wiped away by a flood’ – you will remain standing to claim the promises of God. Why did Noah have favour with God? Whatever pleases God will lead to favour? So what pleases God? OBEDIENCE. God is pleased when we are obedient to his commandments. Noah showed obedience to God in the following ways:

1) Noah honoured God – by faith he built an ark in preparation for a flood! This was a crazy thing to do at the time because Noah had never seen rain before – it had never rained at this time. It is like God telling you to dig a massive hole in the middle of Hyde Park because in a couple of months money will fall from the sky so the hole will be needed so that the money could be collected! How crazy! This is how ludicrous God’s instruction to Noah would have been. Noah was warned about something that he couldn’t see – however he applied his faith to the situation. The Amplified Bible definition of faith sums up Noah’s situation in it that  “…faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed) of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see and the conviction of their reality [faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses] (Heb 11:1). Noah believed in God’s declaration that it would rain – he took God’s word as confirmation, as God had said it he believed that it would surely come to pass – he did not doubt God. He believed that it would rain even though he had never heard or seen it before – it had never been revealed to his senses. All Noah had to stand on was God’s word. It was Noah’s believe that God is a covenant – keeping God (Genesis 6:18).

This produced the faith that he needed in this situation. He had hope in something he had not yet seen and this enabled him to honour God. In life when God gives us an instruction we can become too wise and rationalise his instructions. You and I must understand that God’s instructions will not always make sense to our natural mind as his ways are higher than our ways. We need to learn to trust in the Lord and not to rely on our own understanding (Proverbs 3: 5). Reasoning with God leads to confusion. We will never totally understand why God instructs us to do certain things but all we can do is to ‘trust and obey’  and rest assured that “all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).

2) Noah was obedient:  Noah acted according to what God commanded. God requires prompt obedience – “obedience is impatient”!  When we are given instructions – we usually wait to understand why God has instructed this and whether it makes sense – we cannot afford to wait to understand! We must act promptly. This promptness was clearly demonstrated by Abraham when he was instructed to sacrifice his only dear son Isaac. When we wait to understand, this gives the enemy a foothold in our minds. It provides an open door for him to sow doubt, fear and confusion in our mind.  In the gospel of Matthew in chapter 16 verse 8; Jesus warned the disciples of having little faith because they were trying to reason among themselves – however Jesus reminded them of the feeding of the five thousand – we must not wait and allow the devil to affect our faith. When we reason our faith weakens! Don’t wait to understand, just act! With God there are many commandments we will not understand until we first obey them. Obedience is one of the most difficult things to do! It is not natural for the carnal mind as it does not make sense. However as we walk in obedience God will begin to reveal his plans for our life’s!

3) Blessings: God will always bless you when you are obedient and faithful. There is no one in the bible that was not blessed for their obedience. Noah as a result of his obedience was told to ‘Be fruitful and increase‘(Genesis 9:1) and Abraham become the father of all nations and was prosperous as a result of his obedience to God. Abraham’s obedience has resulted in ‘generational blessings’ for the Jews. One act of obedience has impacted on the nation of Israel even today! The reward will always be greater than your obedience and God will always remember your obedience. ‘God remembered Noah” (Genesis 8:1). 

4) Partial obedience:  At many times we try to obey God ‘partially’ and then we will still expect to receive full blessings. “I’ll attend church but I won’t tithe, “I’ll read my bible but I won’t forgive my friends’. Partial obedience is the same as disobedience. The bible says a person is “justified by what he does not by faith alone” (James 2:24). What is the point of having great faith but not acting on the instructions that God has given to you?  Faith and works go hand in hand! If we obey partially should we expect partial blessings?!  Obeying partially is like asking God for a car and then he answers your prayers by giving you a car with no wheels! Partial obedience stops you from receiving the ‘full package of God’s blessings’. ‘Faith without works is dead’! God will test our faithfulness with instructions – to show our faith and trust in him. We need to act on these instructions – if we refuse to, our faith is just as good as dead - void! “Noah did; according to ALL that God commanded him” (Genesis 6:22, 7:5). Noah followed ALL not just some of the God’s instructions.

So why is obedience important? Jesus said that if you love me, you will obey my commandments. So by obeying the word and the instructions God gives to us we can show our love and trust in him. Listen to God – he will always give instructions before he blesses you. Follow the instruction and position yourself to receive your blessings. Do not wait to understand! As the songwriter  puts it “Trust and obey, for there's no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey."

Further readings: Genesis 6-9; Genesis 22; Proverbs 3: 5-7

2011 Rianne Sintim. All rights reserved.

Thursday, 28 July 2011

FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD

2 Corinthians 5:21(Amplified)
For our sake He made Christ virtually to be sin Who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become endued with, viewed as being in, and examples of] the righteousness of God what we ought to be, approved and acceptable and in right relationship with Him, by His goodness.



God requires our fellowship, everything in the Bible indicates this. When God created Adam and Eve He created them with the idea that this beautiful creation would fellowship with Him. So can you imagine how distraught God must have been when Adam and Eve sinned. This was not the intention of God but before I go on I must at this point, point out that God had given them free will. When God went to fellowship with them they ran to cover their naked selves. God being so good recognised they had sinned and sacrificed an animal (first blood shed in the Bible) to cover their sinful behaviour. This blood shed could only last for a limited period, God could no longer fellowship with them as they were no longer righteous but God did not leave it at that. God continuously looked out for the human race but the enemy had already began to infiltrate. When humans sinned, in the Old Testament, they would offer animals as a sacrifice the blood shed of an animal was not enough. Sins could only be covered with this blood and the fellowship could not take place.

God had a plan. God being so good and longing for the original plan to be fulfilled became human for you and I! God sent His Only Son. The word "Only" shows that God knew this plan would work, there was no Plan B. The Son of God was free of sin and dwelled on the earth. His actions showed that God was ready for man to fellowship with Him once again. However this was not enough. His blood had to be shed, therefore took my sin, your sin and the sin of the world and stretched His arms and died on the cross. He shed His innocent blood, the only blood that could bring fellowship between man and God. Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. (Hebrews 9:12 NKJV)

Jesus clothes were shared amongst the soldiers cast away through lot. But you know what, Jesus no longer needed to be covered. Adam once covered himself to cover his iniquities but Jesus took away that cover that separated us from God. We became righteous. The great exchange had taken place. This means once again we can fellowship with God. Jesus has set us free. Who the son sets free is free indeed. Do you realise that once you have accepted Jesus as your personal saviour you are righteous and can start your intimate fellowship with God. God sent Jesus for YOU and I. Remember Jesus said no one gets to the Father except through me. The work is done so accept your righteousness and start your fellowship with God. He is waiting for you.

Further reading:

John 10:7-9

2011 By Rose Sintim. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

AN INVITATION TO DINE WITH THE LORD


Psalms 34:8
Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.

I never understand before what the Psalmist meant by "How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!." I just didn't get it because how can someone's words be sweeter than honey? But the closer I am getting to the Lord the more it makes sense to me. I most times can't help myself when I am reading the word or stuying the word. It's almost like an out of body experience not knowing who I am. You just have to spend sometime with my Pastor (David Antwi) and if your impressions of who God is doesn't change then I don't know what heart you have. I believe even the person with the most dead heart, choked with all the junk of this world will still have their hearts revived back to life.

21 months ago when God finally planted me in the church He Had specially predestined with me in mind even before it came to being; my whole life, service to Him and my priority for His Kingdom completely changed. To tell you the truth, I hardly recognise this new improved creature called Enyonam Gbekle no wonder my friends don't either. I love this new creature because she is more vibrant, always has a smile on her face, is content, have the peace that I never thought was ever possible, her heart is filled with God's love and in turn is able to love, show and share love with all, doesn't get tired or weary of putting herself out for others and most importantly for once submits to authority in all humility. And all this comes with very little effort with the help of the Holy Spirit. What will I do without the grace of God eh?  I still have a long way to go but so far I am enjoying the beautiful ride with all the wonderful sight seeings and attractions. I am still growing everyday and learning new things as I am continually learning to let God be God because after all it's all about Him really and not about me.

When you taste and see that the Lord is good as I have done, you will cherish every moment with Him and will continually want to hang out with Him. He isn't as boring as most people think He is and His commands aren't so burdensome either. He is the most fun and versatile person I have ever known in my entire life yes I am referring to the Almighty God the creator of the whole universe and all things. He is my best friend, got that! Friends, to taste and see that the Lord is good is an invitation to sit at a huge banquet table filled with delicious flavors. Where God always has delicious and mouth watering flavours that replaces every troubling and nasty flavor in our lives. He has given me a garment of praise for my broken spirit and His oil of joy is afresh every morning in my life. What more can a girl ask for.  He has given me beautiful white robs of His forgiveness in exchange for my filthy rags of sin. I have found peace in my then troubled heart and I am now hopeful for the future.

This morning I came to tell you, the Lord has sent out His invitation for you too to come and taste of all these wonderful flavours of joy, forgiveness, peace, hope and love but the choice is for you to accept this invitation to and be willing to sit at His table for a taste of all these goodies He has prepared for you. He is such a gentleman that He will never make any of you or force you to taste of His goodness. That is entirely in your control and you have the choice to make it happen. I want to encourage you this morning to choose wisely for He cares for you more than you can ever imagine.

Food for thought:
Try it, I know you will love it. Just take the first step of obedience in following God and you will not be disappointed but you will come to the knowledge of how good, kind and merciful He really is. As you learn to trust Him daily, you will experience His goodness and His forever faithfulness.

Verses for meditation:
Blessed is the man who makes the LORD his trust, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods.--Psalm 40:4

How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!--Psalm 119:103

When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart's delight, for I bear your name, O LORD God Almighty.--Jeremiah 15:16

2011 By Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

SECOND CHANCES


Mark 11:25-26
‘And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins'.

 
How many of us have ever been given a ‘second chance’?  The world teaches that if you make a mistake then it’s your fault and that you are not entitled to a second chance. This we know is contrary to the principles of the kingdom of God – the principle of ‘forgiveness’. In the Word we are constantly reminded to forgive others so that we can then expect to receive forgiveness from our Heavenly Father. If we cannot forgive then how can we expect God to forgive us of all our sins? Jesus constantly taught about the principles of forgiveness and he showed us the best example of forgiveness during His last days on earth. Jesus experienced extreme betrayal when His disciples abandoned Him in the Garden of Gethsemane, the Jews put Him up for death in place of the serial killer Barabbas, He was ‘sold’ by Judas and one of His best friend’s – Peter denied knowing Him when questioned ! Wow! Can any of us say they we have experienced such betrayal by friends and love ones? Despite this Jesus practiced what He preached - forgiveness.

Forgiveness can be said to be in two stages. Firstly, the ‘proclamation of forgiveness’. When on the cross, one of Jesus’ last words were “Father forgive them for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34). Interestingly Jesus acknowledged that the people who had put Him to death did not know what they were doing. Most of the time when people hurt us or offend us it is usually a ‘mistake’ – people make mistakes when they are ‘mis’ informed and they ‘take’ inappropriate action which can result in hurting the receiver. Mistakes are not intentional and I believe that people do not intentionally seek to hurt however there are people who take pleasure in this - however there are deeper psychological issues at play here. This was the case with the crucifixion. The Jews did not have the revelation that Jesus was the ‘Son of God’ and in fact the ‘King of the Jews’ – they mistook the truth for blasphemy and disrespect for God. If only they knew! However the crucifixion of Christ was the chief part of God’s master plan for this world and if they had known then the prophecy would not have been fulfilled and our sins would not have been forgiven! In His last moments Jesus openly proclaimed that He had forgiven His oppressors because He knew that they did not know what they were doing!

Secondly, the act of forgiveness. It is very easy to say that you have forgiven someone but then if you still avoid them and refuse to talk to them then you haven’t actually ‘acted out’ your forgiveness. Words are easy, but actions are hard! When someone hurts us what we tend to do is to harbour the resentment and the bitterness. The longer we do this the greater the bitterness becomes and the harder our hearts become and then it gets more difficult to forgive the person. God struggles to work with hard hearts- he requires soft malleable hearts – hearts that the Holy Spirit can minister too. The enemy knows this all too well and so when we are hurt he will constantly whisper to you and exaggerate and intensify what could have been a very small issue. Refuse to listen to him – the devil is a liar! The quicker we forgive the easier the process will be for us. Prolonging the process of forgiveness gives the enemy more time and space to intensify the situation and to cause our hearts to harden. You need to ‘release’ that person – that person will still carry on with their life but if you and I do not forgive we will spend our life holding onto that person and they will become a weight on our heart – a burden! Who then is in a better position? We need to ask God for the grace to forgive because forgiveness is one of the most difficult things for us Christians to do - How ironic!

Jesus put forgiveness in action when he rose from the dead. He immediately forgave Peter even though he had denied knowing him on three occasions as well as his disciples who had abandoned him when he needed their backing the most. Imagine you where on your way home with a group of friends and you were mugged and beaten by a gang and all your friends ran and left you to defend yourself! This is just a taste of what it must have felt like for Jesus however he still forgave them instantly! When he was raised from the dead the first people he wanted to see were these friends who had betrayed him. It is like you being discharged from hospital after being beaten up by the gang and then going straight to visit the friends who had abandoned you!  The message that came from the angel of the Lord at the tomb was “Tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you in Galilee” (Mark 16:7). Do you notice he said ‘the disciples and Peter’? Before Jesus had been crucified he had prophesised that he would go ahead of them to Galilee and despite the betrayal he still included his friends in his plans! Jesus didn’t say ‘oh well you messed up I’ve risen now so I wont include you in my plans! No! He was quick to forgive and put his forgiveness into action. Even Peter who betrayed him to the greatest extent – he specifically made a point to include him in his plans. Just like Jesus we should be quick to forgive – proclaim forgiveness ‘I forgive you’ and then put this forgiveness into action. Show that you have forgiven that person by treating them as if they have not hurt you. Today ask God will for the grace to forgive because his grace is sufficient for us. Forgiveness can not be carried out with human strength but only by the grace of God. I want you to join me in making it our prayer today to say ‘Dear Jesus, Thank you for dying on the cross for me to save my sins, thank you for your forgiveness. Lord give me the grace to forgive those who have hurt me, in Jesus name, Amen!

2011 Rianne Sintim. All rights reserved.

Monday, 25 July 2011

IS HE YOUR JESUS?

Matthew 7:22-23
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

My weekend has been very overwhelming as I had so much going on and yet again God came through as He always does unfailingly and faithfully for me. But the truth is, the situation I found myself in could have been avoided if only I had taken the necessary measures needed and been prepared rather than waiting till things almost got out of hand to start panicking and stressing which the Bible on so many occassions has taught and told me to avoid.  Come on girl, you should know better -yes I know :-)! I need to learn to take everything in my life either small, big, important or not so important seriously and stop being complicent sometimes. But you know what I love about God, even when I take certain things for granted, not being alert and in the process almost getting myself all entangled in a situation giving the enemy the opportunity and the chance to blow it out of proportion, into a  huge fuss of confusion and embarrassement; God is still faithful in coming to my defence and rescue even at the very last minute.

You know why? Because the Bible says in Romans 9:33b, " ...and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame." What a great honor and privilege we have as daughters and sons of the Great I Am! But then, I got on the bus this morning at 7am and all I saw in the faces of people were look of uncertainty, lack of enthusaism, worry, dispair even though for me its been a yet another glorious morning and with an overfolw of God's goodness and assurance from over the weekend - they just seem to be dreading what the week has instore for them even before it began. At this stage the lady I was sitting next to didn't look very happy with me, now don't ask me how I know but l just know - instincts Lol!

You see these people didn't understant why I looked so cheerful with a huge silly smile on my face that early in the morning because they either haven't met  "My Jesus" or know Him as initmately as I do. Todays, scripture says, "Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?" Which implies that we could be going to church every sunday, attending every weekday meeting or be speaking the most complex tongues, seeing all sorts of visions during prayer and still not know who Jesus is and Him not having any clue who we are even though in our own little mind we may think we do.

It's not enough to say we are Christians and yet not being fruitful in all areas our lives always lacking confidence with no hope and constantly living in fear of the unknown like I saw on those faces this early morning. I don't know what my day is going to be like but I know who does and He is "My Jesus" - My confidence and my hope. Now I want to share with you how you too can make Him "Your Jesus and the Lord of your life." Learn to spend time with Him on a daily basis, rubbing shoulders with Him every minute and second through personal quiet time with Him, consistent study of the word - and gradually He will become the Lord of your life too.  As we spend more time talking, listening, praising and worshiping Him for who He is, He will be with us every moment of our day watching over us and His spirit will direct our every step. I go no where without Jesus, so for me that makes Him the Lord of my Life.  We are insperable! 

Today, I want to encourage you to take some time to examine yourself and ask yourself this question - Is He My Jesus? And also examine how you spend your time, and with whom you spend it with as the truth can only be revealed to us by examining our own lives. Paul explains this in 2 Corinthians 13:5, "Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you--unless, of course, you fail the test? By you and I examining ourselves on a regular basis to see if we are in the faith only then can we know for sure if  He is truly "My Jesus" or "Your Jesus"!

Food for thought:
Who are you spending most of your time with?
Who do you call your best friend, sister or brother in Christ?
Remember God doesn't necessary know everyone just because they are in church regularly or call on His name when in trouble and its not about our over spritual attitude either.
 
Verses for meditation:
Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you--unless, of course, you fail the test?--1 Corinthians 9:27

so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,---Ephesians 3:17

But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.--James 1:22
 
2011 Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Friday, 22 July 2011

MY JOY

Psalm 16:11
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.


One of the things I have come to love and appreciate very much about God is, He just know how to make a girl go soft in her knees :-). Once upon a time many many many years ago when I was much younger; I was a very jolly and cheerful growing young girl. But somewhere along the way, life's demands and expectations drove me into becoming a rather miserable and stuck-up adult. I completely lost all sense of what it meant to live and better still what it really meant to experience the Lord's fullness of Joy. I very quickly became excellent at faking it. The unfortunate thing was, the people who suffered it the most were my sisters, the people who worked with me, then my very close friends. And if you were an acquaintance, then you didn't even stand a chance because in my eyes you didn't even exist. What a mizhog Lol!

Truth is, that Enyonam wasn't God's idea rather the world's and most times we don't even realised it because we get so caught up and entangled up in all the drama that we end up losing who we really are.  I can't tell you how grateful I am to God for His continuous mercies, compassion and unfailing love towards me even when I completely didn't take any notice of Him except when I needed something. Better still, He gave my close friends ( I call them my Angels) grace, courage and strength to love me unconditionally and in the process to stick with me through thick and thin. I sometimes wondered what it was that they saw in me that made them stay so loyal and faithful? Jesus, this is got to be your doing, thank you! When I decided in my heart 21 months ago to rededicate my life to Him, I didn't have any clue what was in store for me. However, all I knew was I didn't want the life I lived or had and l was desperate to exchange it with His after all it's got to be better than mine. Death couldn't even hold Him down and  not only that, He rose up from death after three days - wow!  He has got to have something that is worth far more than my rather lifeless (dead) life.

All I am trying to say is, "Fullness of joy" is found only in the presence of the Lord. I don't care what you say or think because I am a full living testimony of that fullness of joy. You had to know the Enyonam before and after to appreciate what I am saying. Even for me, I never thought it was possible. However, I am blessed that I believed enough to apply my faith and held on to His word in 2 Corinthians 5:17 that says, "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." And not only that I also decided to put on the new self, created to be like God in His true righteousness and holiness (Ephesians 4:24). This is because His fullness of Joy can only be found in His presence and  I knew perfectly well I didn't qualify to be in His presence unless I put on my new self, created like God in His true righteousness. After all that is the very reason why He purposefully suffered all that extreme shameful death on the cross so you and I can go before God with all boldness and in confidence to experience His fullness of Joy and His pleasures forevermore. Isn't it awesome? I am just so crazy about Him!


With all sincerity l wish I had words to express what my heart is feeling right now as I right but unfortunately I don't; it's an experience you will have to encounter for yourself to understand.  All I have to do is to remain connected to Him through spending quality time in prayer, worship, reading and studying His word, fellowhipping with other Christians, making His sanctuary my home and things that matters to Him my business; the more I do the more I experience His fullness of joy. This joy is different because Jesus refers to it as, “My joy” (John 15:11b, "that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full") which implies, it is a different kind of joy that we are not used to or the world offers. And this joy can only be found in Jesus through our personal relationship and commitment to Him.

I just want to encourage you today to know that this joy is everlasting and the beauty of it is Jesus already paid the price so you and I can have it freely without having to sell our souls. Remaining in God is the key to experiencing this fullness of Joy. God's promises always comes with an instruction attached, and you and I just need to make a commitment in placing our trust in Him; depending on His sufficient grace to be obedient to His word so we can share in benefits. Today, consider setting aside some additional time for the Lord and set a purpose in your heart to find a place within His presence where an abundance of joy is found and pleasures forevermore.


 Reflections:
Aren't you tired of living life on your own terms and at the expense of your joy?

Applications:
Today, be determined that no matter how busy or over worked you are; you will make the time to spend some quality time in His presence so He can shower you with His fullness of joy.

Power verses:
For the LORD takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with salvation.--Psalm 149:4

Instead of their shame my people will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace they will rejoice in their inheritance; and so they will inherit a double portion in their land, and everlasting joy will be theirs.--Isaiah 61:7


If they obey and serve him, they will spend the rest of their days in prosperity and their years in contentment.--Job 36:11

How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings.--Psalm 36:7


2011 Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Thursday, 21 July 2011

SHIFT THE FOCUS

 Jeremiah 2:8b
“And walked after things that do not profit”.


Cars, clothes, food, alcohol, ..…the world promotes excess in everything we do. Everything we own should be purchased or engaged with excessively. How many of us feel pressurised to ‘keep up with the Joneses’ to purchase the latest model of our favourite car but at the expense of our finances - running up credit card bills and constant debt. Don’t get me wrong God wants us to enjoy life and have good and nice things however the question is ‘How much emphasis and value do we place on the things we own’ and do we place a greater emphasis than that of God? God is a jealous God and only He alone deserves all the worship and honour - God is too magnificent to be replaced by a car!

God knows that when we place a greater emphasis on what we own we lose sight of Him and replace Him with our possessions. Remember the story of the rich man who came to Jesus and asked what He should do to inherit eternal life and Jesus told him to sell his possessions – he went away sad (Mark 10:17-26). It was much harder for this man to give up all his possessions as a wealthy person owns more so would have more to give up. This is a profound. The more we have the more difficult it can be to give it away as we have more to lose. How many of us can say that if told to sell all of our possessions we would willingly do so? Yes, this would be difficult! However it would be easier if you didn’t place too much value on what you owned. Jesus knew this and constantly warned within His teachings not to place too great an emphasis on our worldly possessions (Psalm 62:10).

I’m sure I am not alone in my passion for fashion. I used to constantly fret that I didn’t have enough clothes, enough shoes; despite the fact that my wardrobe was always full. My focus on accumulation made me used to fret about what I didn’t have as opposed to what I did have – a cupboard full !  ‘Better is little with fear of the Lord than treasure with great trouble’ (Proverbs 15:16). I received revelation that it is not necessary to over accumulate and that I did have enough and that as Paul said ‘I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content’ (Phil 4:11), so even though I may not have a walk in wardrobe like the celebrity houses on MTV cribs I have learned that I will always have enough and that wherever I lack ‘God will supply all my needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus’ (Phil 4:19).

How many pairs of shoes do you actually need? Think about it. Over accumulation shifts the focus of God and onto ‘self’. In the end times ‘men will become lovers of themselves, lovers of money’ (2 Tim 3:2). Ultimately ‘we brought nothing into this world and it is certain that we will carry nothing out’ (1 Tim 6:7).The enemy enjoys shifting our focus onto what you don’t have, as opposed to what you do have so that it will cause you to chase things that do not profit. For some of us; ‘keep up with the Joneses’ has caused us to sacrifice the ‘fellowship of the saints’ with working overtime at work. In these times people may need to work extra hours due to the rising living costs however it should not be at the expense of fellowshipping with the saints and God  on a Sunday ‘Those who are planted in the house of the Lord…they shall be fresh and flourishing” (Psalm 92:13).

For others fellowship with God though prayer or through personal study with the word has been replaced by modern technology. The Internet has become the biggest distractor for modern day Christians today. Social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Skype have taken so much of our time that we have become too busy for God when instead we should be busy with God. Do not get me wrong there is nothing wrong with using such sites – I’m a regular on Facebook. However again the question is how much emphasis do we place on this? The two hours straight that you spend on these sites, are you able to spend even half an hour with God in the morning praying and reading the word? I would encourage you that if you have become too busy for God to ask for God's forgiveness and to ask Him to show you those areas of His life that He wants you to change.  Ask God to search your heart, speak to Him about your anxieties and fears (Psalm 139:23). I got to that stage where I was too busy for God however I was able to spend time on social networking. 

However God spoke to me and told me to set aside at least one hour in the morning to fellowship with Him. This was a big sacrifice as I enjoy my sleep; however obedience is better than sacrifice. One hour out of 24 hours is nothing to spend time with my God and I cannot place a value on how my morning devotion for God has caused me to grow as a Christian. I would encourage you if you do not already; to find time in the day to fellowship with the Father through prayer and study of the Word. The wisdom found in the word has the ability to extend our life – within His word God can direct our steps and prevent us from making harmful decisions ‘it will lead us in the right paths so our steps will not be hindered…the word is life’ (Proverbs 5:3). We are so busy enjoying and chasing ‘life’ in this world however life is found in the Word! Seize the life that is found in the Word. You can guarantee that when you engage with the Word you will not remain the same and will gain something you didn’t already have – wisdom, understanding and direction (Joshua 1:8). Intentionally applying God’s Word to your life will produce great success!

What we gain here on earth is temporal and doesn’t last and cannot be replaced. The car that you are driving lost its value once it left the showroom ! However the things of God increase in value and profit us the more we engage in them. The world’s system is temporal and constantly needs to be replaced. God’s system is constantly added to and doesn’t take away and increases in value daily. If the above where displayed as two business ideas – the latter – God’s system would be the most profitable! Let us not lose focus and let us aim to make the things of God a priority in our lives. Once we recreate this balance then this will lead us to instinctively ‘walk after things that profit the soul’.

2011 Rianne Sintim. All rights reserved.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

I WILL BE WITH YOU

Isaiah 43:1-2
But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you.

Often as Christians we believe that we should never go through trials and tribulations. We believe that once we give our life to Christ everything should be a bed of roses, and we should never face challenges. This leaves many of us frustrated when we face a challenge and it is not resolved immediately we start to get frustrated with God. However the God's word does not say we will be challenge or trial free in fact it says the opposite. But through these trials and tribulations God says: 'I will be with you.'

Whilst we are this earth, there are always going to be challenges but for us as Christians we must hold on to the promises of God that says, 'Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.” (Deuteronomy 31:6 NKJV)

God will be with us through every trial we face in life because we are His and as our creator He knows what is best for us. To enable Him to do this we must be completely dependant on Him. Once we do this we can walk through the fire (any challenge in life) and not be burned, we will come out victorious and His name will be gloried. However when we try to go ahead of God we will end up limiting God. We try to determine the outcome and leave little room for God to take charge. God is a problem solver but God has a bigger vision for us His children. God is the only one who knows what the outcome is going to be and it is not for us to worry ourselves over because the He says in Isaiah 55:8,"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD."

When going through any trial or challenge it is often easy to use our carnal mind and just run with what we think is best but is this likely to end in frustration. A completed product cannot write a user manual it must be the creator who explains how to use the product. Therefore because God is our creator He must be our sole guide and we must follow the directives He sets out for us. When facing a challenge allow God to order your steps because He knows you better than you know yourself and knows what the end product is going to be so surely He is be your best director!

2011 Rose Sintim. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

RENEWED JOY

Psalm 51:12
Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you.

There is a joy that is unexplainable when we enter into a relationship with Jesus, God and the Holy Spirit. Although this new-found joy is like nothing we have ever experienced before, eventually circumstances in our lives begin to choke it out when we don't learn to consciously submit our free will to God on a daily basis. The other day, I was having a conversation with someone and the person said to me; you have no idea what I am going through and how difficult it is. For how long will I be living on a happy pill or keep pretending it is going to be okay? First of all we don't have to pretend!

I don't think this question is alien to most of us, in fact a lot of us even though we are regularly in church and serving; have never learnt to surrender our  total will to God trusting Him wholeheartedly with our all through faith. And I say this because I was one of those people. For years, I dealt with God on my own terms and rules because I didn't trust Him enough to take Him for His every word and that was also because I didn't know Him intimately, neither did I know His word for it to be in my heart long enough to take root for it to grow and strengthen me in my walk with Him.

I totally believe life can be extremely difficult at times even when you are a Christian especially. Jesus Himself made it known to us when He said in John 16:33, "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." This is a promise I choose to hold on to regardless what is happening around me. Nevertheless, you are probably saying to yourself it is easier said and yes you are absolutely right about that. In my personal experience, what stops me from enjoying and living the "Joy of my salvation"; is no other than what is known to us all - Sin, unforgiveness and bitterness!

My sins for years, drew a wedge between me and God making Him seem very distant in my life. The more I felt ashamed and not worthy of His love the more I was unwilling to ask and accept His forgiveness; the longer the enemy used my situation to make me feel guilty and condemned. My life for years was unfulfilled with continuous struggles, full of pain and sorrow because of lack of knowledge of not knowing what my real identity was in Christ. We tend to get use to the ways of the world where forgiveness is a rare find so our normal instinct is to shy away from God when we have sinned. Funny enough though, He already knows we are sinners and yet He still choose to love us and in the process demostrated His love for us by sacrificing His life on the cross so we can freely have this very forgiveness without the feeling of condemnation (Romans 5:8, "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us".) wow!

In today's scripture, we both see how David; a man after God's own heart in all his glory felt this way too when he sinned against the Lord. Now the difference between David and most of us is, when he finds himself in this situation; he quickly goes to God in prayer with a repentant heart making known his wrong doing and asking for the Lord's forgiveness and help to live life according to His will in order not to lose his intimate relationship with Him. God wants us to confess our sins to Him no matter the extent of it because an unconfessed sin in our heart chokes His joy and makes it impossible to be intimate with Him. And intimacy with Him is what He created and saved us for. The Bible says in John 3:16 (emphasis added), "God so loved you and l so much beyond comprehension, that he gave you and l his only Son, that as we believe in him we would not perish but have eternal life with Him forever."

I just want to encourage and to remind you of what you are entitled to as a covenant child of God - His unspeakable joy through His Son Jesus Christ. If you are feeling as though your smile has been broken and stolen due to sin or lack of faith in Him, go to Him in prayer today and ask Him to restore the Joy of His salvation into your spirit for a restored relationship. God has renewed my joy on countless occasions when I have felt as though life has stolen my joy. And I am glad to say His word in Psalm 23:3 assures me that, "He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake."

For His name's seek, I will never be put to shame and no matter what it cost - I just need to ask in faith! God is the author of our unspeakable joy. All we need to do is to ask and become recipient of this amazing and awesome special unspeakable joy. He loves you and will do it because a heavenly Father’s love is great toward His children and for His name's seek.

Reflections:
Are you feeling stagnant in your faith?

Do you feel like you are just going through emotions?

Applications:
As you receive and experience God's forgiveness, remember to reach out to others who are in need of this forgiveness too. Share your your renewed joy with others you come in contact with today.

Power verses:
The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple.---Psalm 19:7

But you, O Sovereign LORD, deal well with me for your name's sake; out of the goodness of your love, deliver me.--Psalm 109:21

Although our sins testify against us, O LORD, do something for the sake of your name. For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against you.--Jeremiah 14:7

2011 Enyonam Gbekle. All rights reserved.

Friday, 15 July 2011

AMBASSADORS FOR CHRIST

 1 Thessalonians 4:12
“…that you may walk properly toward those who are outside”


We all carry multiple identities – gender, age, favourite football team and the list goes on. But how many of us can say that we consistently carry our Christian identity outside of the church building? Some of us are ‘Christians in disguise’ – top secret Christians! Only you know that you are a Christian. If we were to ask your neighbours, work colleagues or even some members of your family they would be shocked that you are a Christian. You are constantly gossiping, back stabbing and refusing to talk to certain people in the church. Some people think that the best way to show that you are a Christian is to be ‘over –spiritual’ and judgemental and to show how much of the bible you can quote.
  
Although it is good to know and be familiar with the Word, if this was all it meant to be a Christian how will we reach out to the unbelievers? Actions speak louder than words! The song ‘The Last Jesus’ by Kirk Franklin and the Family puts it beautifully; as a Christian when you are out in the world you have the responsibility to reflect your identity through your conduct and behaviour because you could essentially be the only Christian or the ‘The Last Jesus’ that a person comes into contact with that day or that moment in time. If people struggle to see the Christ in you then they will struggle to see the appeal in getting to know Him and to accept His free gift of salvation. ‘Our words are empty if it does not reflect Christ to unbelievers!

One of the biggest problems today with many of us Christians is that; we are confused within ourselves and these confusions has also brought confusion amongst the unbelievers we come in contact with. Many unbelievers are searching for ‘Christ’ in the world but cannot find Him in us who are called to be a reflection of His light and truth. Many of us Christians lack integrity! On Monday we are Christians, on Tuesday we are cursing and fighting our colleagues. I call them ‘schizophrenic Christians’ – one cannot be sure whether or not they will encounter their Christ-like side when you meet them. Paul tells us to ‘walk properly towards those who are outside’ (1 Thess 4:12). As Christians, we are a walking and a living testimony of God's generous gift to mankind ‘salvation’ and His goodness in our lives. We are call to be ‘ambassadors for Christ’

An ambassador is ‘an official sent by a higher authority to represent it on a temporary mission’. So as ambassadors for Christ we are representing Jesus here on earth and our mission is to win souls for Him through our Christ-like conduct - 1 Peter 1:15, "But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;". We are to walk in love, peace, goodness…self – control - Galatians 5:22-23, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith."  Easier said than done huh! Who said it would be easy following Christ? But then again nothing good in life comes easy.
 
However as we submit our flesh and learn to ‘walk in the spirit’ this will bring gradual movement from mental rules and disciplines to an obedience rooted in the heart’s judgements and convictions. Our lifestyles as ambassadors should attract others as light in contrast to the darkness of the world. Many of us Christians do not realise what a great honour and privilege it is to be an "ambassador for Christ." We should be bringing the lost to Christ and through our lives people should glorify our Father!
 
Reflections:
Have you begun your assignment?

If not what are you waiting for? 

The world needs you to be the light so your heavenly Father can be glorified. Let your actions speak and words reflect Christ - win souls for Christ!

2011 Rianne Sintim. All rights reserved.
 

Thursday, 14 July 2011

PICK UP, GOD IS CALLING YOU!

1 Peter 2:9 (NKJV)
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

When you read this Scripture you may think if we are a chosen generation, and His own special people; why are there people who are not saved? The answer is simple, there are two parts to this scripture. The second half tells us that God has called us out of darkness and into His marvellous light. When Jesus died on the cross that call was made. The key word is "call". God called us and then He gave us free will, a choice to decide whether or not to respond to that "call". It's just like a mobile phone. When somebody calls you, you can chose to answer, silence the call and maybe answer later or you can simply choose to reject the incoming call.
 
People reject the call of God in many ways, they say non-sensical things such as there is no God, or they out rightly sin and have no care of the consequences. Then there are the people who want to buy now and pay later. They want to receive the blessings but they are not ready to stop mixing with the world. They are lukewarm Christians! They silence the call for the mean time and wait for a call at a later date.
 
But when you answer the "call", you accept Jesus as your personal saviour, He takes the burden of your sin and nails it to the cross! You become a member of the chosen generation. You are truly set free and apart. My senior associate Pastor, Pastor Awo Antwi puts it so mildly and at the time same time with so much humour - "God likes it Hot". So to be part of this chosen generation we must answer this "call", because when Jesus died God put out the call all we need to do is ANSWER! Determine in your heart today to answer His call; because He has already called and is waiting for you to answer.
 
Further reading: Isaiah 5:26
 
2011 Rose Sintim. All rights reserved.