I was sitting at my desk, completely unmotivated to study for a major professional exam I am studying for. And last night, I told God I feel completely unmotivated to continue with Him as I have been doing. I wondered if there is something wrong somewhere with the way I was serving God, I wondered if Grace means doing absolutely nothing and just eating the Word till the Spirit moves over it and causes a change within, I wondered if I just do not know what I am doing. And in the midst of it all, the consciousness of my sinful nature was front and center in my mind. And I just felt unmotivated about everything else in my life. If I can't get this right, then what am I living for? Without God I am nobody; if I can't honor Him with my life, if my heart is divided, what am I living for? How different am I from the hypocrites in the Church of God, His very own Bride?
As I sat in my dad's study, this line came to my mind: "Yet I reserve seven thousand in Israel—all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and whose mouths have not kissed him.” 1 Kings 19:18
I did a quick google search, got on bible gateway and found out what chapter and verse in the bible that came from. I need to quickly mention, among other thoughts that came to my mind, it was highlighted in my mind the context in which God said this to Elijah - one of the most difficult and lowest of lows in his life, and not only that, that that was the birthing of Elisha's ministry. He was one of the greatest national prophets in Israel since Moses.
Within that same second, or maybe seconds, (it's interesting how fast our thoughts form), I remembered a verse I read last night or the night before. The verse jumped right out to me and softened my heart. It said "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and [that] your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you." John 15:16.
Reading the passages prior to this verse about remaining tied to the vine, remaining in God's Love that my joy may be full and obeying him over the last couple of days, maybe weeks, had caused me to be stressed out. I felt as though I really can't do this, not because I don't want to, but because my heart has little to no desire to absolutely, without any iota of a doubt, completely and fully obey God. It is difficult.
There's drama and sources of drama front, right and center. There's sources of conflicts within me, professional motivations that border and constantly fall into a place of lust and love of this world. There's thorns left right and center to choke out the Word within, there's people who take pleasure in putting down others to make themselves look good (and you have to LOVE them with absolutely no pretense, knowing they are emotional vultures). There's all kinds of things running through one's mind; past regrets, past hurts, frustrations, anger, malice, covetousness. But somehow somehow, God is not changing His stance (lol) and still says "be ye holy as I am holy", "as dear children, imitate your Father". Really??? Can I give in today and continue tomorrow? Can I just chill?! Can I just be upset because I want to be and not mask the true feelings within? Can I accept a call from him or him or him, knowing fully well he would try to steer me in a direction I know isn't yet in God's plan for me? Can I just be?
But in all these, I forgot that I did not choose Him, but He chose me from the very foundations of the earth to be a partaker of His divine glory. And He looks at me in the eyeball and says "who says I cannot be like Him??? He ORDAINED me already to go out and bear much fruit and that my fruit should REMAIN. Definitely not those Sunday afternoons church highs. No, like a tree planted by a river of water, my fruit shall remain all season. Not because of any spiritual prowess I may have (some people think like this - this is nothing but the same quality within lucifer that led him against God), not because of my will power, and definitely not because I find any good within myself that will make me work out God's will - the flesh cannot glory in His Presence. But because He ORDAINED me. This tells me there is a lot about Grace I really do not know.
And like that passage in the 1 Kings, even though it may seem really difficult and impossible to remain in God's will, there are many thousands, and in our time, definitely millions, who have not bowed their knee to the god of this age, nor kissed him with their mouth.
So as Peter charged the Church I charge you all, and myself especially, to be humbled by God's power so that when the right time comes he will honor you. Turning all your anxiety over to God because he cares for you. Keep your mind clear, and be alert. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion as he looks for someone to devour. Be firm in the faith and resist him, knowing that other believers throughout the world are going through the same kind of suffering. But God, who shows you his kindness/mercy/grace and who has called you through Christ Jesus to his eternal glory, will restore you, strengthen you, make you strong, and support you as you suffer for a little while. Power belongs to him forever. Amen. (1 Peter 5:6-11)
I am not alone; there are others in this world who will not worship nor serve any other but the LORD GOD in Spirit and in truth. But above all, I have JEHOVAH with me, not by my choosing, but out of His own self-will, he has chosen me. It is His Spirit working in me that would mold me into His image and not my will power, not "my righteousness". My Righteousness is of God and my witness is on high. (Gosh! I have tears in my eyes!!!)
I got this from nevahurd's website (www.nevahurd.com), and I just couldn't help sharing it. The demonic influence of pornography is real and at its fundamental level, it is designed by the devil through the depravity of man's mind and man's carnal nature to wreak havoc to man's essence. It is nothing more than the vile attempt of our enemy to rob of us of our "essence". Now, I'm tempted to talk a bit more about God's heart for man and relationships, but I'll just stop there. Hope this blesses you.
Psalm 119:9 How can a young person keep his life pure? He can do it by holding on to your word.
1 Corinthians 6:18 Stay away (FLEE) from sexual sins. Other sins that people commit don’t affect their bodies the same way sexual sins do. People who sin sexually sin against their own bodies.
Spiritual Warfare: The Pornography Battle
The pornography industry raked in a modestly estimated figure of $ 13 billion dollars last year, a number that is expected to climb substantially in the year to come. Clearly, many people are watching, producing, participating in, and distributing pornography, but who are these people? Surprisingly, many of the shareholders within the porn industry are also shareholders of many reputable corporations and the consuming public of pornography is comprised of our dear friends, beloved family members, and loyal co-workers.
We are now living in an age in which God’s principles about sexual purity have been deemed old fashioned, while the easy accessibility of pornography has helped it to become a rite of passage for many pre-teen boys and girls, with consumption beginning as early as 9 years old. Some would argue that the viewing of pornography is OK, and has a less harmful effect on children than violence portrayed in movies and all other forms of mainstream media. The reported numbers of pornography and sex addictions in North America alone however, quickly provides evidence, which refutes the idea that pornography is not dangerous.
Not only is pornography a violation of natural sexuality, it is a violation of God’s intention for the use of sexual activity to be designated and enjoyed between a wife and husband within the sacred institution of marriage. In 1 Thessalonians 4:3, we are told, “It is God’s will that we should…avoid sexual immorality”. The consequences of failing to heed God’s advice regarding this subject are outlined in Romans 1:26. The enemy, Satan seeks to provide a vile counterfeit for all of God’s holy instructions, and the issue of sex is no exception. The moral decay of our society is obvious when “marriage counsellors” suggest the viewing of pornography between couples as a creative way to “spice up their sex lives”. In addition, seventy-two percent of individuals in an academic study admitted to using pornography to masturbate and to arouse a partner. Along with this, many women and men admitted to feeling less attractive and sexually inadequate to their spouses after viewing pornography (Kinsey Institute, 2009).
The devil also seeks to deceive the human mind by introducing a plethora of mostly male viewers to consume and distribute images and videos of children as young as 2 years old being sexually abused and exploited for financial gain. The devil’s insidious deception also perpetuates the violent oppression of women within the pornography industry with key phrases such as “Dominant men beat up dirty sluts” being some of the most requested on the internet.
The evidence of the dark effects of the sex industry on a morally bankrupt society should be enough to convince us that we should not be consuming pornography. The demons of sexual sins however, are very difficult to overcome. The apostle Paul instructs us to flee sexual immorality (1Corinthians 6:18) (1Corinthians 6:18), but what should we do when we have already been captured and have become powerless to this sin? Christ offers a very important means of conquering Satan in this respect. He urges us to pray and fast earnestly as some sins can only be overcome by using this remedy (Matthew 17: 20-21).
If you or someone you know is struggling with pornography and or sex addiction, please visit www.xxxchurch.com (A Christian website devoted to helping people overcome their sex/porn addictions).
Seeking the counsel of a trusted Christian friend, religious leader, or support group may also be helpful in overcoming a problem that is afflicting many Christian men and women alike.
To be sincere, in retrospect, I really did not get it. What it was really about.
Forgiveness is easy to talk about, easy to understand when you are the one encouraging someone to do it. But when you've been disrespected, slandered and pretty much torn apart from the mouth of either someone close to you or someone whose respect means something to you. Then you really know if the Word is alive in you or if it is just conveniently alive in you.
It's been a little over a week since a huge blow up happened between me and a close younger relative and then my heart was exposed to me. I figured I didn't really care much about what this person says because she always came across as arrogant, ignorant and immature. I just laughed whenever she said something "interesting" about someone or if she acted in an "interesting" way. But when it was all turned up against me, a lot of the anger issues I was dealing with from other sources, which I didn't take up to God, came spewing out like an intense, scary volcanic eruption. I knew better, but to hell with better, I wanted to whoop some butt!
For the first time ever, I understood the bible verse "In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry." (Ephesians 4:26).
GOD's WORD translation puts it this way: "Be angry without sinning. Don’t go to bed angry." Do not go to bed angry. We really do not give much thought to that because it's easy to accept and unconsciously convince ourselves that we are no longer angry. We easily accept that yes, we were angry, even God allows it, but no, we did not sin and more than that, we are not going to bed angry. But if truly we are going to bed without anger in our hearts, this is how we know:
"Go ahead and be angry. You do well to be angry - but don't use your anger as fuel for revenge. And don't stay angry. Don't go to bed angry. Don't give the Devil that kind of foothold in your life." (Ephesians 4:26, The Message translation).
Do I need to say more? That pretty much explains what it means to be angry and sin, and what it means to go to bed with anger in your heart. Do not use your anger as fuel for revenge.
In my heart, even though I wasn't going to go on an attack rampage on this person, I was going to "put her in her place". I "needed to set her straight". That right there was completely out of God's will. Completely. I had essentially given the devil a foothold in my life. And as I read these scriptures now, I remember how that night was. I found it difficult to worship and be intimate with God, so I began to pray for the Holy Spirit to help me, for God to lift all barriers and as was praying I started to say I forgive this person and I went to say I forgive other people who had said things to spite me weeks earlier. Remember I said earlier that I took out all the anger bottling up in me on this person. The Holy Spirit took me back to that. Just an aside, I love how God is so real. The Word of God is alive and the Word says we do not know what to pray but the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. We Christians are quick to put God in a box and assume that's when you speak in tongues. But I was praying in English and every word hit me to the depth of my soul even though prior to that I thought I was over that incident. But God showed me through prayer the real intent of my heart.
As I said that prayer, tears were flowing out my eyes uncontrollably and I felt myself surrendering. Just plain surrendering. Some words are not enough to capture the intensity of the moment. And I literally felt something lift off me. I love God and this again shows His desire for me. It shows that even though I had given the devil a foothold and the true desires of my heart was like cursing God to His face, He still desired my company. He still wants me when I do not want Him.
This is forgiveness. When we left go of negative emotions no matter how much people hurt us, and turn around and say to God, I'll follow you and love this person. I'll forgive.
This is what happens when we do not forgive:
"14For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins." (Matthew 6:14-15).
The Message translation breaks it down. "In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can't get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God's part." (The Message).
The Bible goes further in Matthew 18:35 and says "This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart." This is when Jesus shared the parable about the servant who was forgiven his sins by his lord, but who wouldn't forgive another just like him for what he did to him.
Sweeping it under the rug isn't forgiveness. God forgives us from the depths of His heart. That is exactly how we should treat others. "If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven." (John 20:21-24). Do not just sweep the matter under the rug.
But this cannot happen outside of God's help just because of man's ways. As a scripture in the Psalms says, return to God by the help of His Hand. (This is the God-Junkie Standard Version, when I find it I'll update this). We have to take God's Hand, which He offers us freely, opening up our hearts and letting Him be God.
People are bound to upset us, but as God's babies, we should imitate Him as dear children imitate their fathers. "Jesus said to his disciples: "Things that cause people to sin are bound to come, but woe to that person through whom they come. It would be better for him to be thrown into the sea with a millstone tied around his neck than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. So watch yourselves. If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him." (Luke 17:1-3)
May God bless and deliver you from all pain, shame and whatever else may be involved as you unbottle your heart and let God be God. In Jesus' name, Amen.
1. But really, is there a Prophet in North America??? Is there one in the world??? Just tossing back and forth in my mind the time Elisha said to the King of Israel "Let them know there is a prophet in Israel".
He understood something we are not really getting. And if Jesus had to die for us to Live in that kind of authority, I wonder if God is...well, not happy. Not saying all were called to be prophets; it's a bit deeper than that, but you get my drift. Still, who is willing to drop their inhibitions and all God is leading them to drop.
I am. I may fail 20x in one day and it ain't even noon yet, but God is smiling, beaming, because I choose constantly to walk in His will. His joy is my strength. That's why I do not fear condemnation. It is not from God, it is from the devil and he is under my feet. He knows it well, but guess what, I know it now very well. Therefore, I can repent freely, submit myself to the Lord without fear, resist the devil and my oh my, he will FLEE!
Also, do you know that Jesus said only those that do the will of the Father in Heaven will go to Heaven, not those who call Him Lord, or say they cast out demons in his name. That`s why God is extremely happy and pleased when we choose to do His will. ``Fireworks`` do not need to happen, but something beyond those ``fireworks`` do happen.
2. The place of praise and worship is the place of real intimacy. It`s not in the song. It`s deep. I have learned to slow down and chill in God`s presence when situations are a bit tough and my goodness, that is the place of perfect clarity...quiet assurance forever. I love reading my bible in God`s Presence. I love just talking aka praying in God`s Presence and above all I love knowing something I said got corrected by the Holy Spirit :). You know, when you are upset and u ``bring it to God`s Presence`` and you end up ranting and speaking from a place of hatred and just plain vileness (sometimes without realizing because to you, everything is ok and back to normal) and God just gently but strongly (can`t really find the word, let`s say effectively) corrects you. I love chastisement from God. I love God telling me He loves me, I love God just being God and me just being who I am in His Presence.
Try to soak more. I would really encourage you to do so. This is a note to myself as well :)
3. Some people must have thought Abraham to be a "damn fool" walking around saying his name is no longer Abram but Abraham (changed from exalted/respected/highly-placed Father to Father of many [nations]). Urm...Abram suited him perfectly. As in, it was a name that perfectly described who he was at the time. Old, rich, with many servants and respect among his new neighbors. But for an old, aged, wrinkled man who didn't have a child with his own old, aged and wrinkled wife to change his name to father of many nations after a slave in his household bore a son for him must have looked a bit...well, too much in the eyes of his neighbors. More like delusional. I wonder if the thoughts people had in their hearts about his name change hurt him whenever he saw it in their eyes. Father of many nations. And he believed. (His name change was from God, remember)
And that is what faith is all about. Believing God would give you what he has promised even though others do not get it. And moving on in your faith. But what is God really telling you. Do you soak in His Presence. Do you seek Him just for who He is; honest curiosity should get you started you know. Do you honestly hear him or your self.
4. I love God :) (Could not help ending it on that note, I don`t care if it sounds corny)
P.s. my keyboard is refusing to cooperate so I can`t use the question mark key (for those wondering if I skipped primary school) :)
I don't know if someone out there is going through this, or goes through it, "gets it", overcomes and is then back to phase one. But here it goes:
So, since last year, God has been convicting me (intensely at that) of a particular sin. Again, people say big sin, small sin, all is sin, but sometimes, when it comes to you, you figure that somehow somehow, it really shouldn't matter at all and God can not seriously be sweating me over this issue. To me, there were other bigger matters...like growing my faith to believe I can pray over impossible problems and something would happen...I mean, there were just Other matters.
This "little", "trivial" issue was more of a mental sin. I guess I did not attribute much importance to it because it wasn't an "action". Besides, when I got convicted, instead of facing it squarely, I went with the well, it's the devil's thoughts, not mine argument. FAIL.
But mental sins are important. When I was talking to a friend who is now a pastor (still shocked), I was trying to articulate it to her to make her see that it was an impossibility and the words that came out of my mouth to describe it was "habits of the mind". I believe the Holy Spirit dropped that 'cause I wasn't being very articulate in the conversation if you ask me. But that phrase just captured the whole concept. Habits of the mind. I was asking my friend if God broke the old habits of her mind and she told me yes without missing a beat. We were quiet for a while, then she said, Yes, (my name), He did, believe me He would do it.
But a part of me just wasn't placing much importance on it even though God would show me scripture like "But your iniquities have separated you from your God, And your sins have hidden his face from you, so that He will not hear." Hidden His face from me??? What??? and then I would freak out and ask for forgiveness for ALL things I may have done wrong but I just wasn't really repenting.
He would say, "Guard your heart, for out of it flows the issue of life". I would agree, but...life goes on...
He would say, "apply your heart to instruction, let your heart be wise and my heart would rejoice." That last part would get me sober, but by noon, I'm back to selfville.
Yesterday in the afternoon, on my way back home, I was flipping through scripture on my bible and the Holy Spirit just had it in for me. I was playing with translations and the first one I picked was God's Word translation and just look what He said "You were taught to change the way you were living. The person you used to be would ruin you through desires that deceive you" (Eph 4:22). Prior to seeing this scripture God had been taking me on a tour of the bible showing me just how futile this life is and what was His desire for man. That scripture just hit the whole thing for me. Wow!
I had to wean myself of the old mentality, and I did not know how. If you read Mind Purge, you would probably see the inter battle going on in me. I didn't want to go through the "effort" of completely pretty much resetting my mind, my attitude, my view on life and apply it to God's own plan. That included my view on the future I had planned for myself. God wasn't scrapping it, but more like resetting a GPS device to its default setting (the inner setting designed by God, God's plan). And I knew it was going to be tough. That meant a lot of the ideals I have created for myself, the image I portray, everything about me and my life that I knew was going to be based on a completely different foundation. I guess what freaked me out the most was the realization that anything short of God's designs opened doors for demons. If you don't believe me... don't try it, I know. It's not fun to be accosted by demons, believe me.
The thing there was that God told me in more ways than one that it would ruin me and He should me how demons would pretty much do it. He showed me through dreams, there are four that I clearly remember now. In one, an angel referred to it as the "bondage of sin and pride". I never thought of my thinking as bondage. Just last week, on the train to school, the Holy Spirit was ministering to my heart and as I came out of the subway station and I looked at people, I clearly understood what He meant. He used the word "enslavement", and another word that I can't completely articulate what he meant was "worth". He showed me my worth to Him that day. The worth of humanity to Him. Weeks earlier I had written down "Creation is beautiful, and the creation story is a love story", but I didn't completely get it till last week. I came home and God made me read Gen 1 (I said made, yes, there's a story behind that) and I cried. My goodness, crying over let there be light...
If you can't tell, some serious revelation was going on and I could feel how God's heart was heavy, was bleeding for man. Just because of man. And all he wanted was for me to change my thinking so that I do not remain enslaved. I pray God shows you how, because I do not want to explain.
But I didn't know just how. Just how to do it. To be practical, I had to ask how to begin. No clue!
Today, God showed me Romans 5. I suggest you read the whole passage with the message translation. Heavy. I had heard this all of my life, but I just didn't grab (to use a Nigerian slang). And even now, I still do not grab the depths, but dang!
Then God led me to a website and here's pretty much a summary I got from there on walking out of sin that I would like to share:
The first point showed that our calling was completely and only, God's choice. We, in turn, have to remember His choice, His act of love and mercy every day of our lives. Brethren, never forget that our coming out of sin is an act of God!!!
The second point involved choice, on our part, as to whether or not we will answer the calling. Many are called, but few are chosen.
The third point involved power sharing—from God's right hand to ours. This power sharing is designed to give birth to choice, a choice on our part, to cooperate with God, in the salvation process.
The fourth point discussed, remembering the right hand of God during the difficult periods of our life. Our journey will be marred with many difficulties and trials, which intellectually we know are designed to perfect us. However, these are some of the most difficult times to remember God's loving care. God assures us, as He did the Israelites, that by the power of His right hand He will see us through.
The last point clearly showed that salvation is given by the most powerful hand in the universe—the right hand of God.
But more importantly, I pray that the veils on our hearts would be lifted so that we can get the revelation, and walk in God's wisdom.
Best of the day!
P.s.: If you've fallen off, go back to seeking Him. You have no idea how much He desires you. Read that word again - Desire. He desires you more than you desire Him or could possibly do. In fact he says "My dove is hiding behind the rocks, behind an outcrop on the cliff. Let me see your face; let me hear your voice. For your voice is pleasant, and your face is lovely". There is nothing like a Father-daughter relationship, and nothing like a Father-son relationship (as God intends, cause some people have seen hell), and there's nothing like having that with your heavenly Father. Even Jesus said "For your heavenly Father loves you" (somewhere in John 15/16/17 lol). Go back to enjoying your relationship with your heavenly Father.
So, you are at home or work. Restless, tired or maybe wanting to multi-task and you want to listen to good music, but you are about tired of what you have. Don't worry I have a 20 min treat for you. Just sit, plug in your earphone, or use your speakers, whatever works...and listen...
I'm sharing/purging now...so prepare. Usually, I wait till God has worked out what He is doing at that stage in my life, but right now, I want to pour it out even as it is raw, and describe the emotions just as they are. It's a bit of a roller coaster, so prepare.
P.s.: It may just be a bit incoherent, but I'm sure some of you have felt like this before, or you may even be in this place now.
P.s.s.: Linda Ikeji, thanks for the thumbs up, it feels good, lol. But honestly, it does!
I want you. I have never wanted anyone like this. Never felt almost possessive, it is scary. But I still want you, More than anything else, I just do not want the pain, the torture, the mental weaning that comes with self-sacrificing.
You require self-sacrifice, and I understand now that you do not just demand it from me just because, but because you love me so much, you desire truth in my inward parts. You said if my heart is wise, your heart would rejoice. You said I should apply my heart to your instruction, and not stay resolute and harden my heart. And you know what, I want to.
As I think about it, as I meditate on the Truth, on Life from your perspective, on your desires, I want to apply the whole of my heart to it. To live in it and to just BE in it. But it is difficult!
It is difficult to remain quiet when they just don't understand and it hurts. Not just because of what they say, but because of who they are to me. It hurts.
It is difficult to trust You and rest when I want to cry instead, and there's a voice telling me to give up and stick with what I know. It is difficult to ignore it even though I know it's the liar. How do I act like I never heard it in the first place? Like I didn't feel that way? It is difficult!
It is difficult to pour out my affections on You constantly, and to set my love on you, when I also have other interests. Though, they are momentarily, I cannot deny I did not want to go back into the, for the lack of a better word, game.
It is difficult. It is difficult to deny the old man, the old creature, my flesh, it's desires.
Then you tell me to trust you, and not myself. Not my "strategizing", not my willpower, but You.
Lord, I have never, ever trusted anyone with ALL of my heart before. Just how do I begin? What do I think? My mind has a mind of its own, you know. Really, just where do I start?
Then you tell me all you want is for me to be willing. You share with me even more secrets and my heart clenches violently within. A piercing scream is held restrained on the inside, in my innermost parts. I want you, but the pain...
And I realize, I have not seen nothing yet. But You are not oblivious, and I am not alone. You have assured me of causing me to triumph in all things, and You fill me with Peace, Your Peace, Your kind of Peace, in the midst of it all.
There is still a general sense of sadness, soberness, anticipation...it's peaceful, it's calm, yet...
But I LOVE You still, and I STILL want to be with you always. Draw me closer Daddy.
It's been a long minute. Bloggers try oh, it's a real responsibility to this, some even do it daily. My hat's off to you.
Oh well, I would like to share some of the songs that I play every now and then. See, this is important for me because when I started to pursue the knowledge of God and desire intimacy with Him, I found that I didn't like the worship songs that came my way because they were well...worship songs. Now, I'm not a huge rap fan, but bobby jones gospel wasn't really me either. It didn't take long for me to play my "regular" songs back then, that was what...about this time a year ago? Anyways, fast forward to now and I see how lust and sexual immorality can breed within us off the songs we listen to. I used to laugh it off, but I know it for sure now! Oh did I mention how I went clubbing in Lagos this past Christmas and well, lol, I could not club, I just couldn't do it. I could literally hear demons speak through the songs, I wanted to fleeeee...Ok, let me chill and tell you guys the whole story.
Ok, So the day before Christmas eve, I remember b/c as my mom says, you cannot cheat sleep, and I learned that very well that day b/c "men of God" (ok, well, I guess they are) came in early in the morning and I had to come downstairs after roughly 2 hrs of sleep b/c I had just come in from clubbing, and my oh my, they had come to pray EARLY, ok 8 am, but still...and before I knew it, guests were coming in like crazy (we had a party that day), so I didn't go back to sleep till late, and I mean LATE. In fact I was in the middle of a friendly Canada vs. UK argument and I don't know how, what or when, but I just got up, went upstairs, and sleeeeppppptttt!!!. The next day, I saw my friend, she was in shock that I could just leave her like that and sleep, lol eya!
Back to the story! Lol, so, my sister comes in and tells me my neighbor and some friends are going out, I'm like cool...
She then asks if I'm coming. Now, I know one of them already thinks I'm a snob, and by the way, I was feeling restless so I said to myself, why not? Killing two birds w one stone right?
So, I get dressed, we leave at midnight because, instead of getting dressed right after my sister came in, I fell asleep, only to wake up when everyone was downstairs. I should have know that was a sign and just allowed myself to sleep peacefully but no...
So we leave, and ok, I'm not too good with the names of streets in Lagos, but I can describe it well well lol. Ok, so u know where Tribeca is and the other street at a right angle to it when u go turning at the roundabout? The Zenith bank one? Yep, we kept on going back and forth on those two streets for roughly two hours, parking and un-parking, dealing w traffic, and dealing w the police wanting to chat up a ride full of girls...not fun!
When we got to a club, it would be drrrryyyy! Then we would leave and drive somewhere else (...no, we cannot be walking in heels like that; the distance is short when you are in a car, but when you are in heels, they are looonnggg). And as soon as we got else where, the place would be full of people...as in HUMANSSS, like a flood. The smell..ugh! Then someone would call and be like the place we just left is live, we would go back, by then it would be full of PEOPLEEEE hustling to enter...gosh! And we did that back and forth checking about about 3/4 (not sure) clubs on those two streets. Then some guys called us and said we should come to cliente (mehn, that one is full of gay people. I said it, therefore it is the official gay club), needless to say, in between very, very douchy pick-up lines, and a club full of sweating, dancing men and some women, we knew what time it was. Back to Tribeca...oh, at this point, I saw Ikechukwu and sauce-kid, I know they are supposedly hot, but they look scary in person, why was IK walking about shirtless???
Oh well, back at tribeca's gate full of people, including two agbayas in a really really nice ride lol. But seriously, a guy that old and bald with protruding stomach should not be clubbing w girls 10/15/20 years younger. Felt weird. What was even weirder, was that I just hugged a friend, and when these guys drove in, she hug him and said "Hi, UNCLE!" I could not hide it...clubbing w ur uncle in the same club??? AWKWARD!!! But I guess it's normal for some people :)
Ok, we got into Tribeca, the one people said was live about half an hour ago, and it was just...what it was. People sitting, smoking, looking pretty, looking tough, that's all. I could not hide my feelings any longer, I was hot, my make-up felt disgusting, my ankles were hurting, I was tired. Not funny at all!
So, we left, and then a friend calls and says we should come to insomnia, off to Awolowo we go and ta-da, it's LIVE...one problem, JUVIES. I felt like a major agbaya! to top it off, we got to one of those lounges on the side and my juvies from high school, and not by a year, were in there, all HIGH, LOUD and OBNOXIOUS. I hugged them and acted cool, but seriously, I was out of place. My sister who got me out to club had the most irritated look on her face by that time. My neighbor on the other hand, found it funny. She was friends with them and that was the only seating area available so we had to chill. Around 5 am (we were in there for about an hour), we head back home, but first, after trying so hard to drag my neighbor out. Worst night out ever. I told some of my friends, I guess God seriously had it in for me that night. Sorry, for those in my entourage, they had to "suffer" for me. It was a Jonah situation. They next time they went out, I didn't. I sat my ass at home, in fact, I was sleeping when they were leaving and I heard they had fun...guess my clubbing days are truly, truly officially over.
But back to the main point, while at insonmia, where all I could do was sit, I understood the power behind songs. They minister. It was like bellowing commands out to people and watching them act like a bunch of puppets. Now, I don't mean to be harsh, if you can't tell, I used to club, no I used to paarrrtayy lol. I can't remember what the song was but when it came on, it was like perversity just poured itself over the people, and let me get this point through. My Nigerian male friends in Toronto would tell u that in Toronto, the girls are wild. When you go clubbing, it's always "live". A guy said this in plain english: it disgusts him the way they flirt and club, and this guy is far from being "holy" lol. You get my point. Now, for a hot blooded Nigerian male in his 20s to say that, you realize the "background in clubbing" I had in mind, so to see these people go off like that, it was...different. And when the song wound down, the "thing" whatever it was that was in the air was still there but it was like coming out of a climax. I was done, I was ready to goooo. Songs do minister to people's soul.
I remember my first couple of months and when God was leading me off the songs on my playlist, I fought it hard. Then one day, I went on youtube, I don't remember what song it was but as soon as I began to play it, I felt a shift in my insides. Even my lower waist that I wasn't paying any attention to prior to when I played the song felt so sexy, all I wanted to do was whine. I wanted to CLUB. By the way, I don't pay particular attention to any body part, but in that moment, it felt, for a lack of a better word, highlighted.
Pretty much, what you feed the spirit of your mind do matter, and that said, here are some of the songs that I would like to share:
BeBe and CeCe Winans - Grace: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEU86TsUDWE
Tye Tribbett and the GA - Son of Man: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzQuwfoeTx8
Tye Tribbett and the GA - Chasing after you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrDqi7HQzUc
Misty Edwards - Arms wide open : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2ZCIp0HiRo
Knine - Never Alone: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TDCGdwcsOM
The Ambassador - Gimme that: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rytwGHd3iDw
Paul Wilbur - Let the weight of your glory: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=68vJoH3GLJo
Paul Wilbur - For your name is Holy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x6FE8d05vpE
Manafest - Everytime you run: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-egyFN9aS0
My heart... My real heart... The one that's hidden, deeply buried underneath the clothes, the external gestures, the words that come out of my seemingly harmless lips, underneath the icy, sometimes ambiguous eyes, clothed beneath layers of Nefertiti-like pride. That heart is fragile.
Fragile because she is precious, she wishes to remain unmaimed, she wishes to love and be loved but never feel pain, never know loss, insecurity, hurt.
But she is not hidden from you, and if I think her to be extremely precious, you deem her to be worth more. You deem me to be worth more. What can I give in exchange for a soul? All the wealth of the world?
Why did you create man to be so? Is that your image? Is that how you are? How you feel?
I want to share from my devotional, hope it helps you as much as it has helped me.
Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts. Hebrews 3:7-8
I had heart surgery this week. Not the blood-pumping, valve-oriented, physical kind; my soul went under the scalpel that pierces the soul and judges the thoughts and intentions of the heart. The passage I was looking at was in Mark 4, the parable of the sower and soils. This story is about one thing - how the Word of God intersects a person's heart.
Jesus compares our hearts to different conditions of soil. The first is the hard heart: "These are the ones who are beside the road where the Word is sown; and when they hear, immediately Satan comes and the Word which has been sown in them" (Mark 4:15, NASB). Maybe you can relate. Do you find yourself saying, "I read God's Word and an hour later I can't remember what it said"? Diagnosis: You have a hard heart. The soil is so packed down that as soon as the seed is sown, the enemy snatches it away.
"But how did my heart get so hard?" Consider these four ways:
The first way to harden your heart is to run. If when you feel convicted by God's Word you say, "I don't want this" and shut down, after a while your heart's going to get hard.
Another way to harden your heart is to deny what you hear. You know that God wants you to forgive people who hurt you, but you refuse to. Instead you carry around a bag of bitterness, denying or rationalizing why God's command doesn't apply to you.
Maybe your heart's distracted. You hear God's Word but you think about someone else who needs it instead.
But here's what concerns me most: sometimes your heart is hardened by apathy. You say "amen" in church or, "Yes, pastor, what you're teaching is true and we really need to hear it," but then you go out and do nothing about it.
How willing are you to receive truth and sort through whatever you have to in order to get to the parts that God would say to you? The test is how you respond to truth.
So if your heart is open, I encourage you to do a self-exam. Ask God to show you your heart's condition and give you insight into how you might grow. This kind of heart surgery brings healing and life. Receive the seed of God's truth; allow it to sink into the soft soil of a tender heart toward God.
What's the condition of my heart? Hard? Distracted? Apathetic?
How willing am I to receive truth?
Lord, do what You must to break up the hard ground around my heart. Show me where I must humble myself and then help me to do it.
I want your healing and life inside of me. Thank You in advance for the fullness of Your Spirit alive in me. Amen.
By James MacDonald. Open Heart Surgery in Our Journey (November 2009).
The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether, More to be desired are they than gold, Yea, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. Moreover by them Your servant is warned, And in keeping them there is great reward.