What’s in your Frame Space?

I don’t like the picture.” Dayo opposed as he, alongside his friends, sauntered back to their hostel from church after the Sunday Service. 
“It is not that bad.” Bob said and took a glance at the picture on his phone again.

“What do you mean by it’s not that bad. Can’t you see my face in it? I look like I was beaten to a pulp.” Dayo replied aggressively.

“Come on D, it’s your posture for goodness sake. Just stop whining. At least, my hand was cut off too and am not creating a scene over it.” Kay chastised.

“I DON’T like it and I cannot pretend I do, Kay. If you like yours that way, then fine! I won’t take it! Folu is going to upload the picture soon with only me looking like shit.” 

“Okay D, what do you want us to do? We have taken some already and only this and one other appear okay for upload.” Folu chipped in.

“Let’s use the other. I am better in it.” Dayo agreed.

“Heh! Use what? Didn’t you see how  my mouth was opened in the other one? Don’t try it at all.” Diya who has been silent since the argument started suddenly protested.

“Sure! Dayo you know we cannot use that one. Dina’s mouth was opened. This isn’t bad at all. It only made you fatter than your normal self which isn’t a taboo.” Folu pleaded.

“You and Kay can say that because your images came out well. Just cut my image out of the picture and go ahead with the upload. I am not interested anymore.” Dayo said with annoyance and increased his pace. He was hurt. 

The others looked at one another and decided it was better deleting the picture or not uploading at all than losing their friend.

It’s amazing how we so much care about ourselves, about how we look or rather, how others see us. Most times, we forget totally that others exist and it does not matter what’s up with them; all we care about is ‘my self, my family, my job, my face, my career, my home and the numerous ‘mys’ there is’. 

I have had issues with the scripture in Romans chapter 12 verse 10 and many others like it, as the Bible is filled with verses that talk about loving one another, looking on the things of others rather than on ours, etc.

Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in love preferring one another;

I have come to understand that we are limited in a way when we look at ourselves. When we look at ourselves, we have planted a mirror in our frame space which can only project what is placed before it. So, the more we think of ourselves, the world, happenings, the more we are filled with ‘self’ and the more we lust after and express the flesh. Hence the question, 

“What’s in your Frame Space?”

A mirror or an open window?

The devil has given us a mirror-‘self’ to look at so as to be able to steal from us, kill and destroy us but the Lord has given us the opportunity to have an open window we can look out through, to see His Love and Grace, His promises unending, His abundant Life to live to His glory and salvation of humanity.

There is no way our self image, worth, ambition, esteem can tell us who we really are or what we are to become. There is only One who knows us perfectly and can make us become who we are meant to be. CHRIST!

2 Corinthians 3:18

But we all with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

The more we look at our selves, the more we see limitations, boundaries we can’t seem to break through, hurdles we can’t cross, how faulty we are, how much we need to measure up and the standards we are not meeting. Sometimes, our optimism or success is measured by the world’s expectation and we do all we can to get a name for ourselves or please certain class and fit into their world. 

Are all these necessary? They are not because the only standard set before humans is the Son Of God who took on flesh and walked the path of righteousness that we can walk in the same way, keeping our gaze on him and our feet on his footprint, then instead of in a mirror, we will be looking out of an open window to see all the possibilities in Christ and journey towards His Glory, even in the midst of the storms of life.

May the Lord help us to continually place Him before us to behold and to become! Amen! 

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LIFE BY SUICIDE

“Seriously Mope, I don’t understand any of it?” Lauren laments out loud to her friend as they trek back home after church service on a Sunday afternoon. Mope smiles.

“You will, just keep at it.” Mope replies smiling still.

“What is it with you? You took me to your church for the first time and I did not understand a thing of what your pastor preached. Here I am lamenting to you and you are not explaining how I will understand to me but busy grinning from ear to ear like a silly cat.” Lauren blurts out.

“What do you want me to say?” Mope asks her sheepishly. 

“What’s the deal? Is this what you go to church to hear everyday? Someone is teaching you to kill yourself and all of you sit back there ‘whooing and waoing’ as if it is a thing of Joy to die.” Lauren vomits her beef with the service and the pastor that day like a venom.

“Actually, it is, a thing of Joy to commit suicide.” Mope says and gets Lauren gaping at her like she has lost it totally.

“Are you out of your mind? Is this the kind of message we were brought up with? You have been brainwashed, Mope! You are not seeing correctly again; can’t you see that your pastor has filled you all with lies? Please, dear friend, wake up, I beg you, wake up!” Lauren begs hysterically.

She shakes her as if to wake her from a stupefied state.

“Lauren, I am not hypnotized neither am I a victim of a brainwash, but (she raises her hands to emphasize it) if it is called brainwash, then I love to be consumed by it.” 

“Mope, Mope, how come you are easily swayed with doctrines like this. You are not a baby Christian now. You have been active in church since you were young. If not because we had to move down here to school, you know you would have been made a pastor by now. But here, you are, with little or no publicity, sitting in the congregation with others who do not even know to the extent you know, or a young pastor, maybe your age or a little older, heap piles of dying message on you and you are taking the ‘shit’?”

“Exactly, I love the ‘shit’ and do you know what? What you mentioned , about being a pastor, being known is one thing I have to die too. I must kill myself from that state. That mindset is what is giving the devil chances to steal from me, kill me and destroy me. It is self-gratifying! Lauren, that is one of the things to strangle to death. I have to kill those killers by dying, so that I will live.” Mope explains with all her heart.

Lauren is taken aback by her friend’s remark, and for a while, watches Mope who is also looking back at her. She turns her head and appears won.

“Is that it?” She asks cooly.

“Yes, that is it!” Mope answers excitedly.

“You mean, not having the thoughts of being recognised in church, by people who are spiritually there, not thinking of yourself as so important because of your experience or knowledge in God, sitting to listen to other people preach instead of you doing it, happy listening and responding truly are what commiting suicide mean?”

“For me, Yes and many more that God’s Grace is helping me discover! I have been filled with thoughts of myself being very important. I think highly of myself, that I do not give chance to others. Lauren, you know how we carry ourselves back home like there is no one like us, more so because we know some bible. I have realized it’s SELF! That is what the devil wins us through: seeing ourselves always instead of God, instead of the finished work of Christ. Thinking we are everything when actually God is. Being ambitious and feeling God was meant to serve our purpose when we are the ones He created to serve His Purpose! Can’t you see it’s not about us but about Him? If it were to be about self, Jesus wouldn’t have died but He chose to lay himself down. That’s Suicide! And by dying, He lived and gave us Life! I am glad I have to die, Lauren.” Mope says with pleasure and laughter in her voice. “I choose to die, so I will live. I choose to lose to get because it is in my suicide that I come alive!” She says, finally.

By now, Lauren is overwhelmed and has tears streaming down her cheeks, as she watches her friend talk of her conviction in DEATH leading to LIFE, not just that, but at how light she feels in her heart, how lifted she feels, how it looks like she is being exposed and covered at the same time. One amazing thing that she feels and will remain with her forever, is how she too wants to commit suicide by responding in faith to God’s Word spoken, so as to live, God’s very own Life, how she also is understanding that the start point of LIFE is DEATH.

Suicide, in this context is not stabbing oneself with a knife or hanging oneself on a rope but taking deliberate effort as Grace instructs through the Words of Righteousness, the speakings of the Son of God, Christ Jesus, to let go things that point our attention to ourselves in all aspects, things that make us see the world, romance the world and focus our gaze on the Lord and Saviour who saved us, washed us clean, gave us His Life and a hope of eternity with Him.

We will then realize, that our dying is salvation of not only ourselves, but others. 

“Except a grain of corn will fall down and die…if it dies, it bring forth much fruit.”

May our Lord cause us to respond to Salvation processes, so that we will continually DIE to our SELF and abound in LIFE and see that the reason we have a life is because we can point to a death! Amen!

Galatians 2:20; Matthew 16:24; John 10:10; 1 Corinthians 15:31; Colossians 3:5-10…

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THE CORN SAGA!

Do you look forward to the season of corn/maize yearly? I do!

 

Of all seasonal crops, the zea mays season is one I eagerly await. ‘’Well, that is your sentiment’’, someone might say. I agree*smiles,  of course, everything has a starting point. I want to say that the liking of the season has been made prominently an anticipated one for me due to a whole new understanding that broke loose on me some five years ago at an annual ‘love feast’ we celebrate in my church at Ondo town, Ondo State, Nigeria, Africa. The feast is tagged CORN FEAST and the anchor scripture for it is John 12:24(KJV).

Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.

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God versus Constituted Authorities 2

Hi beloved friends,

We ended the first part of this topic on a note of decision making. A decision to be the people of the Lord in our various geographical locations(nations); a people He can call His own and on their behalf rise to establish His righteousness on earth in whichever way He wishes to the praise of His Glory! 

I’d love us to examine the notion we have, I have, that God has a specific Will for our nation(s) or that the nation is to fulfil a divine mandate whereby it is termed God’s own country. Is there anything of such? If there is, why then do we have many dangerous hiccups in the government? If there is not, how can God show indeed his sovereign rule over these nations and governments? Some of the questions I asked God specifically were what He is concerned about:Nations or the People? Are nations going to be redeemed also? When we cry out for mercy for our land, does it have anything to do with the geographical location or the people? I got to understand from my quest that God’s concern is first for a people and not necessarily geographical location. 

Then, my next question was to ask:What about Israel? The people as well as the nation as a geographical location have been a fortified people and settlement from generation to generation, how can this be explained?

I came to understand that though Israel is also a geographical location, it was first a people and the Lord promised the people He was going to establish them on a land that will be theirs. 

 Genesis 17:6-8

I will give you millions of descendants who will form many nations! Kings shall be among your descendants! 7-8 And I will continue this agreement between us generation after generation, forever, for it shall be between me and your children as well. It is a contract that I shall be your God and the God of your posterity. And I will give all this land of Canaan to you and them, forever. And I will be your God.

It is a people that make up the land. As long as Israel is God’s people and His blessing rests on them, the same blessing flows to their geographical location. So, Israel as a land is blessed because it is occupied by a blessed people. The same goes to a cursed land if it is occupied by a cursed people.

Overtime, sin has taken the seat of governance. God and His values have been pushed aside in every stage of human relations and sphere of life on earth starting with the home to schools, offices, relationships, and we no longer acknowledge God. When this happens, the devil takes leadership. Exactly what happened in Eden and birthed a world of first class beastly humans! Humans who can kill in the name of what they believe in, to satisfy their anger, cheat another, take things for themselves by force, homosexuals, fornicators, bitter people, people without natural affection for another, people of strife and seditions, and many atrocities.

Romans 1:22-27

Claiming themselves to be wise without God, they became utter fools instead. 23 And then, instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they took wood and stone and made idols for themselves, carving them to look like mere birds and animals and snakes and punymen.

24 So God let them go ahead into every sort of sex sin, and do whatever they wanted to—yes, vile and sinful things with each other’s bodies. 25 Instead of believing what they knew was the truth about God, they deliberately chose to believe lies. So they prayed to the things God made, but wouldn’t obey the blessed God who made these things.

26 That is why God let go of them and let them do all these evil things, so that even their women turned against God’s natural plan for them and indulged in sex sin with each other. 27 And the men, instead of having normal sex relationships with women, burned with lust for each other, men doing shameful things with other men and, as a result, getting paid within their own souls with the penalty they so richly deserved.(Read also28-32).

The Lord desires that His Voice is heard in every nation and government. He has not said any of his own should not be in any political position or occupy any seat of government neither has he said that they cannot established his authority and righteousness without occupying government positions. We have examples in the Bible:Elijah, Elisha, Moses, Joseph, Esther, Daniel, John the Beloved(he was the one who spoke for Peter so that he could enter  the high priest’s courtyard where Jesus was taken to), even our Lord Jesus. He didn’t occupy any government office yet declared God’s mind with power. What He desires is wherever we are, whatever we do, we are to give Eternal Life.

Looking at Bible stories, there is always a priest or prophet in every reign to chart a divine course, reveal the mind of God to the people, be a covering both for the King and the people/land. Any king/kingdom who tried to be on its own or tried to take the place of God always met its waterloo. Negative cases like Saul and Samuel; Uzziah and Azzariah(2Chr 26); Nebuchadnezzar; Pharaoh and Moses; Herod(who was eaten up by worm while he spoke), and many others. Positive cases like Jehoshaphat and Jahaziel(2Chr 20); Naaman and Elisha(2Kings 5); Pharaoh and Joseph, and many others. 

Today, in this generation and for the generations to come, the Lord has a people he has called out from every race, tongue, tribe, kindred, people unto Himself and for Himself. These people are his purchased possession and He called them The Church-the Body of Christ. 

Ephesians 1:13-14

And because of what Christ did, all you others too, who heard the Good News about how to be saved, and trusted Christ, were marked as belonging to Christ by the Holy Spirit, who long ago had been promised to all of us Christians.14 His presence within us is God’s guarantee that he really will give us all that he promised; and the Spirit’s seal upon us means that God has already purchased us and that he guarantees to bring us to himself. This is just one more reason for us to praise our glorious God.

Through the Church, the Will of the Lord will be done in every nation. His ultimate purpose cannot be thwarted. His desire is that the earth(every people) will be filled with the knowledge of His Glory as the waters cover the sea.

2 Corinthians 5:20

We are Christ’s ambassadors. God is using us to speak to you: we beg you, as though Christ himself were here pleading with you, receive the love he offers you—be reconciled to God.

God will rise up to the mandate upon His Church in every nation and hear their cry whenever a geographical location or its government tries to hamper that in them. The same way He can choose to discipline them(His people) through the constituted authorities. 

About our nations being God’s own country, or fulfilling a divine mandate, this present heaven and earth(nations-geographical/physical location, tribe, race, etc) will be rolled away. Only the Church, the Israel of the Lord(spiritual Israel, not Jews by biological blood or physical location will remain because they are of Him. Anything not found in Him will be wiped off. 

The call to us at this time is to be the ambassador’s we are called to be. Let nothing separate us from the love of Christ. Though the storm rages, the furnace is heated seven times, persecutions increase, hardship, famine, dearth, technology increases, let’s remain faithful in our devotion unto the Lord and His Kingdom. He has created us in His image and set us as gods and Light in every sphere of influence we occupy on the face of the earth. Let’s therefore STAND and establish His Authority and RIGHTEOUSNESS upon the face of the earth.

Maranatha!

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God versus Constituted Authorities 1!

Hi friends,

It’s been a while and I have been full of thoughts and burdens lately. It’s for good though*smiles.

Have we ever taken thoughts of  what God’s disposition is towards our nations and their Government? Several things happening in my country, Nigeria, made me to be achingly curious recently and I started asking God questions. 

My questions can be summarized in the desire to know if there is such thing as God having a purpose for Nigeria(insert your country); is Nigeria recognised by Him at all and does He have an agenda in her Government? I asked because things have been messy here since I can remember and getting messier by the day with the killings in the Northern part esp, Boko Haram murder stampede, political fraud, insubordination and disorder even at the top, Corruption, and a lot like them. 

Romans 13:1-2 says,

Obey the government, for God is the one who has put it there. There is no government anywhere that God has not placed in power. So those who refuse to obey the laws of the land are refusing to obey God, and punishment will follow.

When I looked at this scripture and what happens in my country, I find it difficult in my ‘self’ to agree. Kind of confusing but God is not an author of confusion, he is one God who loves order and peace. So, He has an agenda setting authorities and government in place. 

The creation of the earth was for man to rule and exercise authority, for orderliness sake. Man was not meant to rule over man but ensure order as they work together. That was why the mandate to dress the garden was given to Man(male and female alike), but each of them have their different roles to carry out that mandate.

This plan was intercepted by the unruly and discontent Being ever lived, Satan because Man allowed him and that turned the beauty of the earth to dirt, filth and nothingness, with man displaying all forms of lifestyle different from God’s which therefore needed to be put in check. Even at that early stage, God still tried to come to man to redeem him but he has come to taste what it means to know good and evil and charted a way for himself. 

Nations were established as a result and kings set on the throne. God was aware and allowed it. His own nation, Israel as a people also got to a point where they desired to be like other nations against God’s desire for them, and because they could not see God’s will , he allowed them to have kings or he permitted authority over them.

This made it clear to me that God never wanted man to rule over man, his desire was that he will be the only authority over man, while man carries out his order, instructions upon the face of the earth. The only rules so to speak, God wants man to obey are his and the only King he wants man to bow to is Him. 

Yet, with man’s rebellion, he still is interested in man’s affair and made the earth his footstool, watching every constituted authority, that he allows rule from His throne in heaven.

I took a break to imagine what the world will look like with only God being Lord and we all being directly under him, living according to His dictates as led by His Spirit inside of us. What a beautiful and serene world that would be!

So, the question of whether God is in charge of constituted authorities is settled. Yes, He is sovereign! It might not look it but He is. He sees what happens and steps in at times when he is called upon by his people like the Israelites in Egypt or when the evil in a particular place is unbearable like he did to Sodom and Gomorrah and Nineveh. It occurred to me also that the only persons that can bring God into the governing of a nation are His people in the nation. Then I remembered Daniel and the Hebrew Boys in Babylon, Lot in Sodom and Abraham interceding for the land,  also Nehemiah concerning Jerusalem and many more in the scriptures. 

This made me understand that though there are constituted Authorities over nations, God is sovereign and is mainly concerned about his people in the nations. This means the Lord seek a people in very nation of the earth that he can call his own whereby he can have a chance to take the total rule again. Will that people be me and you? Let’s think about it!

 God bless us all.

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THE COURAGE TO FAIL

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Courage, in our world today seemed to have turned to a tool rather than a virtue that it is; a tool everyone desires to have within their reach to beat the challenges they face, seeing that this is the world where the fittest only survives; a tool to achieve success; a tool to attain leadership positions; a tool to acquire wealth and affluence, fame and status; a tool to use in turning every negativity around to suit their cravings and selfish seemingly positive desires, a tool to attack difficulties, and after surmounting and attaining everything, lay it aside until further notice.

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Hardly will you find the average man praying to be courageous (not just having it as a tool) or find him praying to find the courage to lay aside certain things that are not right in his life as Hebrews 12:1-2 instructed to do.

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THE HANDMAID

5626367-Praying-Black-Woman-Stock-Photo-prayer‘’Lord, I want to live for you. Come, take my heart, my mind, my emotions, and my all. Make me a woman after your heart, your servant, a vessel unto honour.’’
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