Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Handling Dispute In Marriage

Proverbs 21:9, 19
Better to live on a corner of the roof than share a house with a quarrelsome wife.

Better to live in a desert than with a quarrelsome and ill-tempered wife. 

Proverbs 19:13
A foolish son is his father's ruin, and a quarrelsome wife is like a constant dripping.

Proverbs 20:3
It is to a man's honour to avoid strife, but every fool is quick to quarrel.

Proverbs 17:19a
He who loves quarrel loves sin.

Proverbs 17:14
Starting a quarrel is like breaching a dam; so drop the matter before a dispute breaks out.

I am a very strong believer in the fact that if God is allowed to prevail in our homes and marriages, then God is already given a free play in the world over. If our homes are operating in accordance with the instructions of God then in no time the world will be a better place to live in for us.
Although the topic of this post is meant to address both the husband and wife, but because I am a woman, I am trusting God to use me in addressing the issue from a woman's point of view and He'll raise a vessel to take up the issue from a man's point of view.
Proverbs 14:1 says "The wise woman builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down." The responsibility to build a home is primarily delegated by God to the woman, there is nowhere in the Bible where God addressed the man to build a home. But my darling ladies the Lord knows that you carry the strength and ability in you to fulfill this responsibility, so don't feel wearied, you are an embodiment of strength in yourself, you are not the weaker one.
With that said, it is now time to look at the issue of dispute and quarrels in marriages. Surprising enough, there is nothing said in the Bible of a quarrelsome husband, we hear of violent husband in Malachi chapter 2, but not of a quarrelsome husband. Is it that God didn't create men to be quarrelsome? Well not at all, it is because the violent man with a prayerful and godly wife is a vessel in the hands of God in molding. As we know in 1 Peter 3, it is through the purity and reverence in the life of the wife through the workings of Christ in her that shines and radiates and draws the husband to God. Never mind that your husband is as he is, if the Christ in you shines well enough, it is just a matter of time for him to be drawn to God.
But when you have learned the secret of submission and prayer, then with wisdom, knowledge and understanding, your home will be a masterpiece for all to see. So much as been said about a quarrelsome wife in the passages above, and I believe this is so because a wife plays a very big role in the life of her husband and family at large and she will not be effective if she is a wife who is quarrelsome and unable to control her temper.
A wife has been made by God to be suitable help to her husband, and then we are learning that even if her husband is an unbeliever, it is through the reverence and purity of her life that her husband is won over to God, and then she is still the one delegated by God to build the home. How will a quarrelsome wife and an ill-tempered wife fulfill all these God given assignments on her life when the major ingredient to having success in these assignments is lacking.
Quite a number of times we have heard it said that when something is bothering you it is important to speak up. A lot of problems that we women have is that we always want to be heard. Proverbs 18:2 says "A fool finds no pleasure in understanding but delights in airing his own opinion." When you are perceiving that your views tends to bring about a quarrel, then it's important to hold them in. You will not be helping yourself and your husband or even fulfilling God's assignment for your life when you are air a view that breeds a quarrel. There is always a very good time and manner to air that view without causing any problem with it.
Proverbs 17:9 says "He who covers over an offence promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends." What I am learning here and I hope you are too, is that never keep records of the wrongs your husband has done, going over them again will only hurt your marriage. Instead, let the Lord help you take away the wrong and find the ease within to clean up the slate.
In your home as a wife it is important to pursue the peace of your home at all times even at the expense of your own view and opinions. The Lord will help you as you make effort to be the woman He has designed you to be.

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Saturday, 25 May 2013

Godly Parenting


Malachi 2:15
Has not the Lord made them one? In flesh and spirit they are his. And why one? Because he was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do mot break faith with the wife of your youth.

If I attempt to say that the human race is going into extinction it is not that the human race will cease to exist, but the moral value that places a pride in the human race is grossly on the decline. And the worse hit in this decline of moral value are the children that are born into the world in this generation. It’s either the parents are losing focus or the devil is grossly taking over the minds of our children, and as parents we are doing very little to tackle the situation. 
Another thing I have discovered is that most parents are beginning to rule out discipline in the homes all in the name of showing love. The level of exposure in the world today is way too advance for the children and as parents we generally feel it’s fun exposing our children to things that are way beyond them. No wonder we have having the stories we hear these days of teenage killings and even toddlers accidentally shooting themselves dead. 
The contents of a lot of T.V programs for children are absolutely nothing to write home about. Things like witchcraft and wizards have now been made to look like fun and less evil than it actually is. Guns are crossly been displayed in the children’s cartoon programs in the name of fighting evil. And I can just go on and on about everything that is wrong in our society today aiding the decline in moral value.
With this said, it is important to know and understand the expectations of God in the life of the parents over the lives of their children. In the Bible passage above, the Lord said He has united the man and his wife and made them one in flesh and spirit because He seeks godly offspring from their union. I now wonder within me that if we fail as parents, what excuse will we give God as reason why we were unable to produce for Him the godly offspring that He desires from our marriage union?      

1 Samuel 3:11-14
And the Lord said to Samuel: “See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make the ears of everyone who hears it tingle. At that time I will carry out against Eli everything I spoke against his family - from beginning to end. For I told him that I would judge his family forever because of the sin he knew about; his sons made themselves contemptible, and he failed to restrain them. Therefore, I swore to the house of Eli, ‘The guilt of Eli’s house will never be atoned for by sacrifice or offering.’”

So many times that I have thought about my responsibility as a parent and this passage comes to mind, I am reminded that the assignment the Lord has given to me as a parent is one not to be taken lightly or handled with negligence. When I consider the fact that Eli as a priest never did anything wrong, yet he payed for the sins of his sons that he knew and did nothing about. A curse and death sentence rested over Eli and his household just because of his failure as a parent. Eli’s only sin was that he did not restrain his sons from doing wrong.
In our generation today, quite a lot of parents are guilty of the same sin in the name of showing or expressing love to their children. In as much as there is a big need to love and show love to our children, there is also a big need for a balance between love and discipline. 
When you show too much love to the children without adequate discipline, the result is the total decay in moral values that we are beginning to experience in the world today. When a child is not thought to be a disciplined and responsible man, then he’ll forever be a boy even at the age of 40years.
Solomon said in Proverbs 22:6 that “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” The kind of adult a child grows up to be depends largely on the kind of training he gets as a child. And this training is not what is expected of the teachers in school or the aunties, uncles, and the older people around. But it is much of what the Lord expects of the parents. One of the major reasons for which the Lord  united the man with his wife, both in flesh and spirit is because he seeks godly offspring from that union. The Lord expects godly offspring from the man and his wife and not the uncles and aunties that are hanging around or teachers in school.   
The instruction that I prefer to that of Solomon, is the instruction given by Paul in Ephesians 6:4. It reads, “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” There are different paths to which a man can train his children which eventually becomes their life shaper as they grow. This pattern might not necessarily be in the way of the Lord, but it forms the basis of who the child will grow up to be. 
But Paul said the training of a child, which will form the foundation of the child in life should be in the instruction of the Lord. It is important that the training of the child from which he/she will not depart when they grow should be in the instruction of the Lord and not in any other way or path.   

Proverbs 23:13-14
Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish him with the rod, he will not die. Punish him with the rod and save his soul from death.

One aspect of training a child that is grossly been threatened is the act of discipline. A lot of societies have now taken discipline for child abuse and so many societies most especially in the developed countries have actually prohibited the use of the rob on children. There is the need to try and understand the difference between the discipline of a child through the use of a rod which the Bible recommends in the passage above, and child abuse. 
The use of the rod the Bible says does not kill a child, but rather it saves life. This is a big contradiction to what obtains in the world today. But it is important to note that there is the need to balance discipline and love. A combination of this (love and discipline) is what saves the child as the Bible has stated. Excessive discipline without love is what leads to child abuse rather than the use of the rod as a measure of discipline. But love without discipline the Bible also says spoils the child. If you love your child then based on Bible recommendation you discipline that child and even use the rod as a means of discipline. A child who is not disciplined in a child who is hated and not loved. When you truly love your child you take the time to train and discipline him/her and save their souls from death.

Proverbs 13:24
He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.

The fact that discipline is grossly been down played in our world today is what is resulting in the increase in moral decay that we are observing among the children of today. But one thing that we need to understand is that when we discipline our children, we do not only save their souls, we invest in our own grey days. Proverbs 17:6a says “Children’s children are a crown to old age,” this proverbs does not refer to children who lacks discipline, because Proverbs 17:21 says “To have a fool for a son brings grief; there is no joy for the father of a fool.” Again Proverbs 19:13a says “A foolish son is his father’s ruin,” without this been said in the Bible it is happening in our world today as we can see the so much grief that wayward children are bringing to their parents. But how can a child gain wisdom without being thought and how can one teach wisdom without discipline. A son without wisdom is a fool and of such he brings grief and ruin to his parents.
As parent in order to safeguard your joy in the future it is important to train and discipline your children and in fact train them in the instruction of the Lord. When a parents spares the rod, he hates his child rather than love him as we are learning in the Bible. But there is the need to sound it loud that excessive use of the rod produces a negative effect on the child rather than train. It is the use of the rod to discipline with love as the underling motive that produces the desired result and also produces wisdom. When you spare the rod, you do not only mortgage the future of your children, you also mortgage your joy over them.
The need for proper discipline of our children cannot be overemphasized, the world we see and complain of today is as a result of the neglect of a lot of parents who ignorantly and in the bid to show love have relegated the need for proper discipline to the bottom. The assignment to train a child in the way of the Lord was delegated by God, He says in Malachi 2:15 that He made the man and his wife one in flesh and spirit because He seeks godly offspring from that union. There is the need to evaluate our performance in this regard. If we need to do a little more, then now is the time to start. In all assignment that God has given us He will demand an account. May the Lord see us through.

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Thursday, 23 May 2013

The Making of a Life Partner

Genesis 2:18
The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.

The first thing to note very carefully is that the wife is a suitable help made by God. Far above emotions, the wife is suppose to be a fitting support for the man. So if I am permitted to say this, if any man goes ahead to get married by reason of emotions, without first seeking the face of God to provide for him that suitable support needed for his life’s assignment,  such a man is acting in error.
One other very important thing to note is the declaration of God in the second part of the passage above. It says, “I will make a helper suitable for him.” If we look at this statement critically, we will realize that it is God Himself who is making the suitable helper for the man and not the man's parent or the man himself going in search of a help for himself.
In order to have a marriage free from unnecessary troubles, you need to first seek the face of God, and be sure that indeed this woman or man that you are getting married to is God's choice for you. You need to be very certain that this is the help or the ordained authority that God has made for you. As a man, at whatever age you are now, whether old or young, you need to start to pray to God to bring you a help suitable for your life's journey when the time is right. The help that will go along with you on your life's journey and help fulfill your destiny and the assignment of God on your life. Parents are to begin to pray and hand over this matter to God right from their children's tender age, as no parent is capable of making a suitable help for their child. This assignment can only be adequately handled by God alone.

Genesis 24:1-9, 12
Abraham was now old and well advanced in years, and the Lord had blessed him in every way. He said to the chief servant in his household, the one in charge of all that he had, “Put your hand under my thigh. I want you to swear by the Lord, the God of heaven and the God of the earth, that you
will not get a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I am living, but you will go to my country and my own relatives and get a wife for my son Isaac.”
The servant asked him, “What if the woman is unwilling to come back with me to this land? Shall I then take your son back to the country you came from?”
“Make sure that you do not take my son back there,” Abraham said. “The Lord, the God of heaven, who brought me out of my father's household and my native land and who spoke to me and promised me on oath, saying, 'To your offspring I will give this land'  he will send his angel before you so that you can get a wife for my son from there. If the woman is unwilling to come back with you, then you will be released from this oath of mine. Only do not take my son back there.” So the servant put his hand under the thigh of his master Abraham and swore an oath to him concerning this matter.

Then he prayed, “O Lord, God of my master Abraham, give me success today, and show kindness to my master Abraham.      

 This passage, tells the story of how Abraham got a wife for his son Isaac. From what we have read in this passage, there are a lot of lessons to learn, but one lesson  I  want us to hold unto very dearly is the statement Abraham made in verse 7 of the passage. He said “The Lord the God of heaven, who brought me out of my father's household and my native land and who spoke to me and promised me on oath, saying, 'To your offspring I will give this land'  he will send his angel before you so that you can get a wife for my son from there.”
Abraham very well understood that when it comes to the issue of making a suitable helper, it was a matter delegated to God alone. It was only God that was capable of making a suitable helper for Isaac and not the chief servant. And also, the chief servant appreciated the enormity of the errand he had been sent, he knew that left alone he could not carry out the task successfully and so on arrival at his destination he had to pray. He needed God to make a choice for Isaac, and he asked for a sign to be able to identify that suitable helper whom the Lord had made for his master's son.
Now we need to understand that it is only God, the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and End of all things, that knows the various needs of a man's life, He knows the assignment the man has to fulfill, and so the help that will fit in to meet the needs of each man has to be made by Him. He knows the future, He is mindful of the upcoming challenges, and so it is of great importance that the help needed to meet up with the struggles and challenges of the future comes directly from Him.  
If you are at that stage of your life when  you think you have met a desirable partner with whom you wish to spend the rest of your life, you need to first take the matter to God and seek Him and so as to be sure that the person in whom you have invested your desire is that suitable help that God has made to fit in and help establish His purpose for your life.
Proverb 19:14 says “Houses and wealth are inherited from parents, but a prudent wife is from the Lord.” Now the Bible has clearly shown us that the assignment of making a suitable help for a man in the person of his wife can only be carried out by God and nobody else. Not you as the one needing the wife nor your parents, but the Lord.
And this also applies to the woman. You cannot on your own, either by reason of emotions or any other reason whatsoever get engaged or be married to a man without allowing God lead you to the appropriate man in whom your life will find fulfillment. That right man to whom your destiny has been tied. You need to be sure that you have obtained the consent of your Creator, before signing that marriage certificate, so that when the storms begin, and the tides starts  to blow, you can be sure God is mindful of you and He has your back. You are to be sure that the man you want to journey with is the appropriate, God ordained authority over your life and in him your destiny will find fulfillment. 

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Tuesday, 21 May 2013

The Purpose of Love In Marriage


Song of songs 8:6-7
Place me like a seal over your heart, 
like a seal on your arm;
for love is as strong as death, 
its jealousy unyielding as the grave.
It burns like blazing fire, 
like a mighty flame.
Many waters cannot quench love;
rivers cannot wash it away.
If one were to give
all the wealth of his house for love,
it would be utterly scorned.

The book of Song of songs speaks of the love that exist between two lovers, and this is a book that is good enough to be included in the word of God (the Bible). This book shows that the issue of love in marriage is of great importance. I will like to describe love in marriage as an emotion, a catalyst feeling infused by God into the man He has created and the woman He has presented to him to be his suitable help and wife to aid in binding the man and his wife together to become one in spirit and flesh according to the design and desire of God.
This kind of love described in the book of Song of songs is one that God created exclusively for the man and his wife in marriage. This love is one of, but not the only binding force in marriage, it is an emotional feeling that helps keep the man and his wife united in marriage. It enables the attraction of a man towards his wife, and the wife towards her husband. It is one of the catalyst forces that causes two flesh to become one in accordance with the declaration of Christ to the married couple. This love is sacred, it is of God and it is exclusively for those in or about to be in a marriage covenant.
According to the description we have of this love in the book of Song of songs, it is a strong feeling, Solomon said it is as strong as death (Song of songs 8:6). This love is a very strong binding force that brings about joy, peace, contentment and even rest between married couples when channeled properly and applied as the Lord intends it to be used. Other things that are produced from this strong love is a sense of belonging, it produces warmth and affection between a man and his wife. There is also a form of protection between the two married people as one spouse will always want to watch over the other to protect the one he/she loves.
But this love can also be misused and misappropriated, it can be aroused unnecessarily and this sweet binding force between a man and his wife can then turn into a venom that produces jealousy that is as unyielding as the grave. In the book of Song of songs 2:7, 3:5, 8:4 Solomon repeated a warning saying “daughters of Jerusalem, I charge you: Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.” When this love that we have spoken so well of is aroused or awakened unnecessarily, it becomes very destructive and has devastating after effects. In as much as it is a catalyst that binds the man to his wife and the woman to her husband, it is also a strong feeling that arouses jealousy that is as unyielding as the grave.
There is an important step that precedes the release of love; we should keep in mind that it was after the Lord presented the woman to the man that she seized to be called woman but wife. Before you fall in love with that woman you saw and think you like, you need to first take the matter to God in prayers. You need to ask God questions and seeks answers to know if that is the woman the Lord has made for you to be your wife and a suitable help for your life. 
Do not make a choice of life partner solely on the basis of love but on the basis of prayer. You need to confirm and be sure that it is the Lord that is presenting that woman to you before you release your love to her. As a woman, you also need to pray and seek the face of God to know if it is God presenting you to that man or it's just your emotions leading you. It is important to let God present you to the man He has ordained for your life before you release your love to him. 
There is an important question that we need to ask ourselves as we talk about love and marriage. The question is this: “Is love enough for a marriage to stand the test of time?” When we are able to answer this question properly, then we should be able to ascertain if love alone can be a reason for a man to go ahead to marry a woman and take her to be his wife.
From what I have learned of real life issues, love is hardly enough reason for a man to take a woman to be his wife. A strong and convincing consultation with God is a perfect and sure reason for a man to take the woman the Lord has presented to him as his wife and be married to her.
 Love as a catalyst will appear in the union over time if truly it is the Lord that has ordered your steps to that man to be his wife. Do not let love appear before your consultation with God, if love is released first, it obstructs your ability to hear clearly from God on the steps you are about to take, and it affects your ability to make clear and objective decision on whether or not the Lord wants you to marry that man or woman. Put the release of love on hold and hear from God first to be sure you are walking in line with God’s agenda for your life.

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Sunday, 19 May 2013

Faith That Makes Things Happen


Romans 4:18-24
Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead - since he was about a hundred years old - and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.” The words “it was credited to him” were not written for him alone, but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness - for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead.  

On many occasions that I have had to trust God over issues that I was struggling with and over the challenges that I face from time to time, the passage above has really strengthened me and given me the ability to have faith. Hebrews 11:1 tells us that “faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” In as much as this definition of faith is very true and correct, I am positive that a lot of people will agree with me that it is not as easy to be certain of what you do not see and be sure of what you hope for without a basis for your certainty. When we look at this definition in isolation, it appears like an impossibility because in truth "seeing is believing." It is easier to believe what you see and have experienced than to believe what is not seen. 
Quite a number of people still struggle with faith because it has been based on nothing. When we pray about issues, we still try to put in an effort or two in order to make things happen despite the fact that we have prayed. A lot of times we still do things in order to help God answer our prayers because in truth the faith we have has not been based on something.
Reading about the story of Abraham and the covenant of God for his life in the book of Genesis we will not get a very clear picture of how he was able to believe God for the fulfillment of God’s promise for his life. And in truth Abraham also struggled with faith concerning the promise which led him to listen to the advise of his wife and take her maidservant to have a child with in the effort to self orchestrate the promise of God for his life. So when we struggle with faith sometimes God understands, but He still waits for us to have absolute faith that really does make things happen.
God blessed Ishmael no doubt (who happens to be a product of self effort), but Abraham still had to exhibit absolute faith to birth the promise of God for his life in the child Isaac. In the wake of God’s covenant for ours lives absolute faith is the only means by which we can obtain the fulfillment of that covenant.
Absolute faith can only be attained when we are able to base it on something. When we read through the passage above Vs 21 says “being fully persuaded that God had the power to do what He had promised.” The faith that Abraham had that orchestrated the fulfillment of God’s promise in his life was a faith that was based on God’s power. Abraham was able to trust God and have faith because he knew well enough that God had the power to do as much as He had promised. If God cannot do that much, He will not promise that much.
When we go through the miracles of Jesus, there was always one very common occurrence with the healing miracles of Jesus. Each time a man of woman was made well Jesus always had this to say; “Your faith has made you whole.” If those who were seeking the intervention of Jesus in their situation did not believe in the ability of the power that Jesus carried, then the power has no meaning to them, and they cannot benefit from the workings of that power. In the same way, in our present day, your ability to get a miracle from God rest on the basis that you believe that God’s power is able to do for you what you have asked for. Your faith in God is made easy when you have a revelation and an understanding that God has the power to do what you want Him to do. Without this revelation and understanding it will be difficult to have faith because your faith has no basis.  
In Hebrews 11:6 we read that “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.” In truth the faith that has a foundation is the one that believes in God and His abilities. To trust God with your issues as you pray is basically because you have a revelation and an understanding of what God is capable of doing for you. If you still lack this revelation and understanding, you lack the faith that makes things happen. 
When we read the story of the woman with the issue of blood, we will learn much about the faith that makes things happen. Vs27- 28 reads “When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” There was a revelation of Jesus that this woman had which made her resolve within her that she just needed a touch of the cloths of Jesus to be healed. She had heard stories and seen other people getting their miracles and so she knew that the power she needed for her healing was in Jesus. This power flowed round about Him even to His cloths and this woman understood as much and this made her resolve in her heart that just a touch was all she required. Her understanding of the power of God that Jesus carried formed the basis of her faith and then she acted on that faith and saw results.
In order to have faith that will move God, it is important that you understand and get revelation of the Mighty God that we have as Father. Your knowledge of God and the power He possess and the strength of His ability forms a base for your faith and makes it easy to have faith. When you understand what God is able to do, then it is a lot easier for you to know that your situation is not an impossibility for God. It might be an impossibility for you, but definitely not for God. And so when you are tired of struggling with those things that you are unable to do or solve by yourself, you take it to the One who has the power to do it for you, but first you need to know and believe that indeed He is able to do it for you, that is the faith He requires of you. 

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Thursday, 16 May 2013

God's Purpose for Sex In Marriage

1 Corinthian 7:2-5 (NIV)
But since there is so much immorality, each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. The husband should fulfil his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband. The wife's body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband's body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time, so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.

Sex in marriage is a topic that is mostly avoided in Christian discussions. If we run through most church topics and most of the topic discussed in most Christian gathering we will notice that sex hardly feature. Yet this singular issue is silently affecting most marriages and even causing break-ups in a lot of homes. In view of this, I think it will do our marriages a lot of good to find out what the mind of God is and what the Bible says about this topic.
I very well understand that sex in marriage can be adequately regarded as a very private issue but if it is becoming a tool in the hands of satan to destroy the marriage the Lord has established, then it's worth gaining insight on and to understand if we are erring on this topic and at what point is satan taking advantage of our ignorance on this issue.
There are quite a lot of places in the Bible where we can find insight on the issue of sex in marriage, mostly when we go through the book of Songs of Songs written by king Solomon and also something was also said about it in Proverbs 5 which I will most likely make reference to in the course of writing this, but the one that directly speaks of the topic explicitly is the passage above. 
The first address Paul made in this passage to the married man and woman is that the husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife and likewise the wife should fulfill her marital duty to her husband. What this tells me is that sex in marriage between a duly married man and his wife, and between a duly married woman and her husband is a duty that should be fulfilled. It is a common thing that a lot of woman, definitely not all are not inclined to sex. I went through the same struggle in my marriage until I came across this passage and I began to pray. My husband had commented a couple of times about my attitude towards sex and I shoved it off as an immoral line of discussion. But when I came across what Paul said about this issue in marriage I knew I needed God's intervention to fulfill this duty well enough.
It is good to dissuade the youth and unmarried people against premarital sex, noting that premarital sex is wrong. But sex between married couples is ideal, it's important and it a duty that must be fulfilled. As couples if there are issues in this area of your marriage, it's not a thing to shove off, it's worth all the attention needed to be given to it. It's a matter worthy to be prayed about. You might not necessarily want to discuss your sex life with anyone, but it's worth discussing with God.
Another point Paul made clear to the married couple is that as a married man your body does not solely belong to you, but it also belongs to your wife. And in the same way, as a married woman, your body does not solely belong to you, but also to your husband. Personally I found this piece of information very revealing because there had been several occasions that I had forbid my husband to touch me, either because we were having a quarrel or that I was too tired, and because I felt I was a born-again Christian and my husband is still in the process of finding his feet in Christ I thought I was right and was very justified with my actions. You just cannot imagine how guilty I felt when I stumbled on this passage. But I bless God that He is helping me take steps to correct this in my marriage. Your husband has every right to your body because you belong to him and you are one with him. In the same manner, your wife has every right to your body because you belong to her and you are one with her in flesh and spirit. No one but God designed and established it so.
And then finally Paul says "do not deprive one another except for mutual consent for a time," that shows that abstinence from sex between married couple should only happen with the mutual consent of both parties for a time. The avoidance of sex between married couples should not happen over a long period of a time, and both parties should be in agreement for this to take place. I don't know if I am the only one getting some interesting revelations about some things that should be cared for in our marriage to strengthen the tie, but I am positive that God is opening up the minds of His people to things they might be ignorantly doing wrong that is encouraging a strain in their marriage. 
Sex in marriage is a spice that I believe the Lord infused into marriage not just for procreation or reproduction, but that God gave this additive in marriage to be enjoyed and to encourage a firm bonding between the man and his wife. 

Proverbs 5:18-19
May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth. 
A loving doe, a graceful deer - may her breast satisfy you always, may you ever be captivated by her love. 

Solomon talking about a man and his wife in this passage I believe was talking about the sexual relationship between them. But he was not speaking of sex in term of procreation but as thing to be enjoyed and get satisfaction from. Now when a thing that has been infused in your marriage that is supposed to generate satisfaction for you, becomes a thing you are being deprived of or you absolutely do not get the intended satisfaction from it for whatever reason, then it is worth praying about, and so Paul says "so that satan will not tempt you." The lapse of sex in marriage or the absolute lack of it is a dangerous trend that satan is capable of taking advantage of in your marriage and home and so there is the need to think it through and pray about it.
I will want to emphasize at this point that the marriage under consideration, is the marriage between a man and a woman as the Lord intended it at the beginning. I do not advocate for same sex marriages, because it  is totally against the design of God for marriage. It is ungodly and I do not support what the Lord hates. 
In truth I feel really reserved writing about this topic, but from nowhere I find myself typing this post and I believe the Lord wants to touch a marriage and heal a home suffering under the ignorance of what is been discussed in this post, and I pray that indeed marriages will be healed and divorce certificates destroyed by reason of the revelation of God's truth about sex in marriage.

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Wednesday, 15 May 2013

You Are Too Blessed to Be Cursed

Number 22:12 (NIV)
But God said to Balaam, "Do not go with them. You must not put a curse on those people, because they are blessed."

Number 23:7-8, 18-23 (NIV)
Then Balaam uttered his oracle:
"Balak brought me from Aram, the king of Moab from the eastern mountains. 'Come, ' he said, 'curse Jacob for me; come, denounce Israel.' How can I curse those whom God has not cursed? How can I denounce those whom the Lord has not denounced? 

Then he uttered his oracle:
"Arise, Balak, and listen; hear me, son of Zippor. God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill? I have received a command to bless: he has blessed, I cannot change it.
"No misfortune is seen in Jacob, no misery observed in Israel. The Lord their God is with them. God brought them out of Egypt; they have the strength of a wild ox. There is no sorcery against Jacob, no divination against Israel. It will now be said of Jacob and of Israel, 'See what God has done!'  

My last post was about the hedge of God over the life of Job, and it was a comforting revelation for me to know that over my life as a child of God satan has and knows that he has his boundaries when it comes to my case. I am so very positive that it is exactly the same for all true Christians who have been bought over by the blood of Jesus.
We are all seeds of Abraham by virtue of the our believing and receiving of Jesus as our Lord as we have learnt in Galataians 3:26-29, so what we are reading in the passages above is actually not a thing limited to the Israelites of old, but that this is a true fact for all the true sons and daughters of God. 
The very comforting truth is that concerning your blessings and protection God is not in the business of changing His mind. If there is any impossibility in existence, it is the fact that you cannot be cursed. Never mind the challenges and trials you are facing. They can be very uncomfortable I agree, even Hebrews 12:4-11, tells us that God's discipline and training are painful at the time we are going through them, but they are there to train us and leave. But that any authority, principality or power under heaven can curse you, that is an impossible thing. No-one has the ability to upturn what God has established. It is a fact that you are blessed and cannot be cursed by virtue of your right as a child of God through your faith in Jesus. 
Principalities may try, but the truth is that there is no sorcery against your life, there is no divination against your destiny and no-one can curse you when the Lord has delighted in you to bless you. When you life is well rooted in Christ then the next thing is to carry-on in the obedience to God's commands with the boldness that as a child of God your life is firmly secured in Christ. The Lord has not given us the spirit of fear, but of boldness, of power and of love. You are indeed to blessed to be cursed. 

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Tuesday, 14 May 2013

You Have God's Hedge Over Your Life


Job 1:9-10 (NIV)
“Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 

There are some hidden truths in the Bible that only takes the revelation of God to bring them to the open, and of such hidden truth is the passage above. We have read a lot about the protection of God in the Bible, but what I understand about the passage above gladdens my heart.
I am most certain that Job was not aware of the conversation that the Lord had with satan concerning his life, but the Lord will have this recorded in the Bible for the benefits of us in this lifetime so that we might have a glimpse of what goes on there sometimes.
The statement satan made about God’s cover of protection over the life of Job is something worth considering. By virtue of Job’s righteous walk with the Lord, he had the hedge of God over his life, his household and everything he has. Satan attested to the fact that God blessed him and all that he had. 
This is not a truth restricted to Job alone. This is the revelation of God to those who have diligently walked with Him. The Lord God Almighty has placed a hedge over the life of the righteous, over their household and everything they have. And so the Bible says that “say to the righteous that it shall be well with him.”
It does not  matter that you might not see the hedge, but the prince of the world and the powers of darkness know and understand that as a child of God walking righteously before the Lord they cannot mess with your life; you are a no-go area for them. The Lord is certain about what he has placed around your life when He said in Isaiah 41:10-12 that “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. All who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you will be as nothing and perish.” 
This passage is so because just like Job you have a hedge around your life, there is the protection of God around you and all that is your. The beautiful things is that the Lord did not forget your flocks and even the works of your hands He is mindful enough to bless. 
A lot of times we go through life’s struggles, challenges come and the testing of faith occurs every once in a while, but that has not nullified the truth of the word of God that your have God’s hedge round you and all that is yours. If you do not have a peculiar case like that of God, then the only other thing that can remove God’s hedge off your life is sin. But for as long as you remain a man that fears the Lord, the hedge of God is around you and all that is yours. Please always rest in this confidence. That is why the Bible tells us that when the enemy comes at us like a flood, the Lord God Almighty raises a standard against them. So be of good cheer because in truth you have the hedge of God around your life. 

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Friday, 10 May 2013

Worship

Job 1:20-21
At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said:
"Naked I came from my mother's womb and naked I shall depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised."

In my walk with the Lord, I have come to understand that there is a difference between worship and rejoicing, just as there is a difference between happiness and joy. It took me having a personal experience with God and the challenges of life to come to the knowledge of this truth. 
What it was that made Job fall to the ground to worship God in the face of the very many and heavy calamities that befall him is what finding out, this for sure will definitely help us in our upright walk with the Lord. When we look through the personality of the man Job from Job 1:1-8, we will see a very upright man who has walked diligently with the Lord all of his life. His wealth and busy schedule never took the place of God in his life. He walked with the Lord so well that God Himself made a proud declaration over the life of this man called Job.
Another thing that we need to be mindful of is that, Job was not aware of all that was going on in heaven over his life. He didn't know that satan was on an evil mission over his life. But what I have learnt about this man Job is that no matter the level of calamity that befell him, He didn't hold God responsible for his misfortunes. We are all away that nothing happens without the knowledge of God, but how Job was able to worship God in the middle of all that happened to him is a factor that builds around a strong relationship and love that had developed between Job and God over a period of time. 
The strong and unwavering relationship that existed between Job and God was one characterized by TRUST. Job trusted God enough to understand that God will not allow this calamity to befall him if it was leading to nowhere. The calamity was painful no doubt; the Bible records that Job tore his cloths and shaved his head, but still he fell face down and worshiped.
The act of worship is not one characterized by our circumstances, it is not determined by the good or bad experiences we have, it is not subject to our ability. It is not just about the songs we sing in church or at home. But true worship is brought to play by the knowledge of Who we know God to be in our lives. You are able to worship God in all circumstances whether good or bad when you have developed a strong relationship with Him. Your walk with God determines how well you are able to worship God even when things are not working favourably for you.
The Bible says those who worship God, worship Him in truth and in spirit, this is so because worship to God is not determined by issues of the physical. But it is the bonding in the Spirit between God and His children that is expressed in worship. 
Job had learnt to bond with God over time, he had learnt to connect with God as he walked uprightly with Him diligently. And when those calamities befell him, it was easy to run to God to bond again with Him irrespective of what he was going through or whether or not God could have averted the situation. The initial focus for Job was not to know who was behind his problem or what could have caused the problem, but the dear need to bond with God even at that very dear time and the Bible said he worshiped. 
The test of true worship is when you have learnt to worship God in truth and in spirit irrespective of the situation you find yourself. Then you look beyond the challenges and struggles you are facing and you look to Jesus and just the knowledge of God in your life brings you to the point of worship. When you have grace the grace to truly worship God in all circumstances, your challenges are getting close to their expiry date because God will not allow you to trust Him in vain.

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Thursday, 9 May 2013

God Loves Me

John 1:12-13
Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to be called sons of God - children born not of natural descent nor of human decision or a husband's will, but born of God.

This is one of my best Bible passages. For me this passage more than shows the grace of God offered for free. To have the whole world at your beck and call, being a child of the most high King, the Maker of the heaven and earth, simply through faith in Jesus is something that beats the best imagination of satan himself. 
First to think that God in His love will bring down His one and only son, who without sin heaped the sins of the whole world on Himself and then put them all to death by the shedding of His own blood is really a deep thing to consider. Too awesome to comprehend and too good not to appreciate.  
In recent times, the Lord has done so much to rebuild my marriage and restoring my husband's love to me. We've been having a very great time as husband and wife and I really do love to be loved by him. But this is just a shadow of the love of God for me. It is as though the Lord is trying to show me a bit of what his love is like with a vivid example through my husband.
But the love of my husband is just a vague example of the love God has for me and for many who truly are His sons and daughters through their faith in Jesus. God's love is far deeper and weightier than the love of my husband that has so swelled my heart. The Lord loves me enough to give His son to die for me, He loves me enough to forgive all of my sins, He loves me enough take away my cares, He love me enough to clear my diseases and sicknesses, He loves me enough to provide for all of my needs and wants, He loves me enough to protect me. And even the battles that I don't even know exist, He fights and wins them all for me. The Lord loves not just me, but He loves my husband and loves my children too. And then in the same manner, He loves my parents and siblings. And He loves YOU. All at a simple price of faith in Him, receiving and believing in His son. He has asked nothing else of me but just to receive and believe in Jesus. 
God does not love me alone like this, He loves all who just like me have received and believed in His son, obeying the His commands and requirements which also is made possible just through my receiving and believing in Jesus Christ. Is there anything more I can say to this than just to appreciate this God who has loved me so. I can't love God half as much as He loves me, I just pray daily that I will not fall out of His love for me. I need His love for my daily existence.  

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Have You Learnt The Secret of Giving?

Exodus 34:20b (NIV)
No-one is to appear before me empty-handed.

Exodus 35:4-9, 21, 29 (NIV)
Moses said to the whole Israelites community, “This is what the Lord has commanded: From what you have, take an offering for the Lord. Everyone who is willing is to bring to the Lord an offering of gold, silver and bronze, blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen; goat hair; ram skin dyed red and hides of sea cows; acacia wood; olive oil for the light; spices for the anointing oil and for the fragrance incense; and onyx stones and other gems to be mounted on the ephod and breastpiece. 

And everyone who was willing and whose heart moved him came and brought an offering to the Lord for the work on the Tent of Meeting, for all its services, and for the sacred garments.

All the Israelite men and women who were willing brought to the Lord freewill offerings for all the work the Lord through Moses had commanded them to do. 

Exodus 36:3-7 (NIV)
They received from Moses all the offerings the Israelites had brought to carry out the work of constructing the sanctuary. And the people continued to bring freewill offerings morning after morning. So all the skilled craftsmen who were doing all the work on the sanctuary left their work and said to Moses, “The people are bringing more than enough for doing the work the Lord commanded to be done.”
Then Moses gave an order and they sent this word throughout the camp: “No man or woman is to make anything else as an offering for the sanctuary.” And so the people were restrained from bringing more, because what they already had was more than enough to do all the work. 

I am not sure the people of God in our generation understand well enough the secret behind giving unto the Lord. When we go through the passages above we will notice some things that I will like to highlight. 1) The offering requested by the Lord was a freewill offering, it was not one of the compulsive prescribed offering under the law; 2) The offering was only made by those whose heart moved them to and who were willing, and so there was no cajoling of any kind. An instruction was made and people responded willingly. 3) The people gave continuously until they were eventually restrained from giving.
One question I will want us to ponder on in these passages is: “Why is it that the people never stopped giving even after all that was needed for the construction work had been adequately provided for until Moses restrained them from giving more?” I suppose these people knows more about the secret of giving that we need to discover.

Malachi 2:10
Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this, says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.”

One of the secret of giving is found in the passage above. You can never give unto God without receiving back in multiple fold of what you have given. Some may argue that this passage only applies to tithing and not freewill offering as in the case in the book of Exodus, so we will take a look at another Bible passage.  

Proverbs 3:9-10
Honour the Lord with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine.

The secret of giving lies in your ability to honour God with what you have. Giving to God is a tangible reflection of what you feel in your heart for God. The weight of your offering is directly proportion to who God is to you. The widow in the book of Luke 21:1-4 gave all she had to live on because that was how much God meant to her. If you say to love the Lord, then show it by what you have to give up in reflection of that love.
When you honour the Lord with your wealth, you are making an investment with God that must surely yield returns because God never owes. That is the secret the children of Israel in the book of Exodus knew that moved them to keep giving. They were making their investment in God that was sure to yield returns to them in multiple folds of what they had given.
Luke 6:38 says “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” This is the secret of giving, and when you give to the Lord this principle will surely not fail over your seed. You can never trade with the Lord and loose, the Lord will personally watch over your investment to ensure it yields returns to you in a good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over manner.
When you are tired of living in lack, then learn to make your investment with God. The widow of Zarephath made such an investment and she and her household were well fed and taken care of all through the drought period. Don't wait till you have a big seed to sow, saw the little that you have. The widow in the book of Luke gave all she had to live on even though it was small and so did the widow of Zarephath. The children of Israel didn’t stop giving and they never lacked. Learn the secret of giving today, sow your seed of love in God today, when you cast your bread upon the waters, after many days it will return to you.

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Monday, 6 May 2013

The Presence of God


Exodus 33:10-11, 12-19 (NIV)
Whenever the people saw the pillar of cloud standing at the entrance to the tent, they all stood and worshipped, each at the entrance to his tent. The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young assistant Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent.

Moses said to the Lord, “You have been telling me, ‘Lead these people,’ but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. You have said, ‘I know you by name and you have found favour with me.’ If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favour with you. Remember that this nation is your people.”
The Lord replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”
Then Moses said to him, “If your Presence does not go with us, do not send up from here. How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?”
And the Lord said to Moses, “I will do the very thing you have asked, because I am pleased with you and I know you by name.”
Then Moses said, “Now show me your glory.”
And the Lord said to Moses, “I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you, and I will proclaim my name, the Lord, in your presence. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.” 

Exodus 34:29
When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of Testimony in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the Lord.

There is something about the Presence of God that requires us giving it a major attention as Christians. A lot of times we get so familiar with God that we totally forget to seek His presence in our lives daily. One thing that caught my attention in the passages above is Moses attitude towards the Presence of God. True the Lord had directed him to continue on the journey and lead the children of Israel to the Promised Land, but that was just not enough for Moses. He understood that he needed God with him on that assignment.
When we read through the beginning of Exodus 33, from verses 1-9, we will see God giving an instruction to Moses to move on and that He the Lord will send an angel to go with them and He will destroy the occupants of the land that He swore to their fathers. When Moses was going to respond, he spoke as though the Lord had to mentioned to him who will go on the journey with him. The presence of the angels were good no doubt, but not good enough for Moses and definitely not good enough for me.
Moses in vs 16 said “How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?” That goes a long way to show us that the presence of God in our lives makes all the difference. It is the Presence of God in your life that shows the world that indeed the Lord is pleased with you. It is the Presence of God in your life that distinguishes you from others and makes you stand out in the crowd. Not the presence of angels but the Presence of God. I so dearly seek for the Presence of God in my life today and always.
When your way pleases the Lord, He fills you with His Presence. No matter what the devil holds up for you, it can’t stand or withhold the Presence of God that you carry. In Genesis 28:10-15, the Lord visited Jacob in the dream and in verse 15, promised that He the Lord will be with him and watch over him wherever he went. And so we see Jacob carrying with him the Presence of God everywhere he went. By the virtue of the Presence of God in his life, he was a very blessed man. He was so much of a blessed man that he became a blessing to others. His master Laban prospered so much just because of Jacob and the Presence of God in the life of Jacob.
Genesis 39:2 reads “The Lord was with Joseph and he prospered, and he lived in the house of his Egyptian master.” Genesis 39:21 reads “The Lord was with him; he showed him kindness and granted him favour in the eyes of the prison warder.” Joseph was one man that moved around with the Presence of God in his life. He was sold to slavery yet he carried in him the Presence of God, and his prospered. He prospered so much that he poured out prosperity to his Egyptian master. Again to the prison, Joseph still carried in him the Presence of God. Joseph was not limited by his circumstances and his situation did not hinder the fact that he carried the Presence of God in him. That Presence of God in his life was faithful enough to lead him to the palace.
 1 Samuel 16:18 reads, “One of the servants answered, ‘I have seen a son of Jesse of Bethlehem who knows how to play the harp. He is a brave man and a warrior. He speaks well and he is a fine-looking man. And the Lord is with him.’” This is how David was classified by one of the servants of Saul. The classification that I like the most is the one that reads “and the Lord is with him.” David was identified by the Presence of God in his life. He was distinguished and he stood out from the crowd by virtue of the Presence of God in his life. He stood bold to confront Goliath not because he had the ability or strength, but because he carried the Presence of God in him; thus he was able to make his boast in the strength of the Lord. No wonder Moses will say that “how will the people know that you are pleased with us unless you go with us, what else will distinguish us from all the people on the face of the earth?” Now David stood out by virtue of the Presence of God and nothing else. Can you see why God will say of David, “I have found a man after my heart.” God was so pleased with David that He filled him with His Presence.  
 Above all else, you need to seek the Presence of God in your life, that presence that guarantees peace, joy, blessings, success, pleasures forever more, victory in all life’s battles, healing and good health. There is no match for the Presence of God in the life of a child of God. That is what stands you out among all the other people. That is what shows the world that indeed the Lord is pleased with you.
When you have been given an assignment to do by God, please do not stay content with the angel going with, seek the Presence of God to see you through it. When you carry in you the Presence of God you radiate the glory of God in your life. And even though you don’t see it, all those around you will see and know that indeed you carry in you the Presence of God. I just seek your ever glowing Presence in my life daily my faithful Father and God.

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