Pain: the Gift Nobody Longs For

by Omolola Oriogun

Pain – the gift nobody longs for
Still it comes
Somehow leaves us stronger when it’s gone away
Pray – I try and pray for Your will to be done
But I confess it’s never fast enough
For me, it seems the hardest part is waiting on You
When what I really want is just to see Your hand move

I want a peace beyond my understanding
I want to feel it fall like rain in the middle of my hurting
I want to feel Your arms as they surround me
And let me know that it’s okay to be here in this place
Resting in the peace that only comes in the waiting

Time, Time to let it go and just believe
Trusting in what no one else but You can see
Free – freedom from the fears that close me in
When I can’t beyond where I have been
But then again the silence doesn’t mean that I’m alone
As long as I can hear that I am still Your own.
(Words by Dave Clark, Don Koch, Greg Long (c) 2001)

These are the lyrics of a song (In the Waiting) performed by Vicky Yohe. I took my time to read the words over and over again so I could get its meaning and full understanding.   In this world, no man has ever in his/her life asked for pain, suffering or anything thing that’ll bring tears. One thing is certain, pain and suffering come, whether we ask for it or not – and the way we handle it matters.

The Bible made us to understand in Heb. 5:7-10 that JESUS learnt obedience through the things HE suffered. If JESUS the author of our salvation suffered, then we should expect to suffer because JESUS is expecting HIMSELF to be formed in us.

In Matt. 5:11-12, JESUS made us to understand that “Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.” For any of us who endured suffering like JESUS did, HE is assuring us that there’s a reward is awaiting us in Heaven.

Also in Matthew 16:21 JESUS revealed to HIS disciples that the time had come for HIM to go to Jerusalem to suffer and be put to death, and on the third day, rise again. As Christians, we must understand that suffering is part of the package for us to be changed into the image of CHRIST.

Rom. 8:17-18 is a scripture I love so well because it made me to fully understand the joy that can come  from pain and suffering - “And if children, then heirs; heirs of GOD, and joint-heirs with CHRIST; if so be that we suffer with HIM, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

Dearly beloved, when pain and suffering comes, instead of being angry, saying any insultive words or stopping your relationship with GOD; thank HIM for the pain and suffering, worship and make sure your relationship with GOD continues and finally, ask HIM for HIS peace that’s beyond your understanding and HIS grace to see you through it all.

There and there, you can be sure of reiging in eternity with HIM!!!

Whose Culture?

by Omolola Oriogun

I recently attended a traditional wedding ceremony in the Eastern part of Nigeria – Aba to be precise. The program was scheduled to start at 2 p.m. in the afternoon but it was delayed because of some traditional rites that had to be done, cultures that had to be followed. As a Christian I thought and said to myself, “this is not right,” and asked the bride-to-be, “must you do this?” She replied saying, “if I don’t do all this, I won’t be considered married.” I couldn’t say anything but just had to shut my mouth because her response startled me.

While seated somewhere waiting for the traditional wedding to start, I thought back to 2006 when my elder sister had her traditional wedding in the Western way i.e. the Yoruba way. The program was billed to start at 8a.m but it didn’t officially start until 10a.m Continue reading

Bondage Unlimited

adapted from a message by Pastor Dele Oyeleru of TCBC, Ejigbo

God’s commandments are not irksome, burdensome, oppressive, troublesome or grievous (1 John 5:3b).

Sometimes we view God’s commandments as killjoys or restraints to be cast off. A dour faced matron who looks like she’s sucked on too many lemons, holding a cane over our heads, preventing us from enjoying a good life.

Not believing that God’s commandments are because He loves us will surely lead you into sin, just like Eve did when she believed the Serpent’s lie that God’s law was just holding her back from being all she could be.

The book of Jude speaks of different groups of people who cast of restraint and did not stay within God’s laid down boundaries. These men stepped over the guard rails of protection of God’s word because they believed God’s law was cramping their style. Continue reading

My Neighbour

by Omolola Oriogun

I once asked my mentor the question “who exactly is my neighhbour?” Is it my own family members or the next door families to my right and to my left, the next person beside me in the public bus or the driver to a taxi that picked me up or my hired driver that gets paid monthly?

Her response stunned me when she said..”The entire human race GOD created is your neighbour.” In shock I said, “no way.Are you telling me to love a hired assassin, a robber, a rapist, a fraud, the killers in the Northern part of my country? No way!!!” She didn’t argue with me but took me down Bible lane.

Stripped of all the theological debates and boiled down to its raw essence, Christianity and Christians will be judged by two actions: how much we love GOD and how well we demonstrate this by loving our neighbour. Continue reading

Things to Seek

by Miss Mo

1. Contentment – God, teach me contentment in all aspects of my life – Hebrews 13:5; Psalms 37:16; Philippians 4:11; 1 Timothy 6:6 and 8 Matt 6:28-34 -32 Philip 4:12 Prov 30: 7-9; Ecc5:10; Prov 19:23

2. Wisdom – God, teach me wisdom in the management of all resources You have provided me with – Proverbs 4:7; Proverbs 3:13; Proverbs 8:10-11; Proverbs 24:14

3. God’s Spirit – Cause Your spirit to dwell within me – Eze 36:26-31 Continue reading

Errors We Hold On To

For the time is coming when [people] will not tolerate (endure) sound and wholesome instruction, but, having ears itching [for something pleasing and gratifying], they will gather to themselves one teacher after another to a considerable number, chosen to satisfy their own liking and to foster the errors they hold (2 Tim 4:3 AMP). Today in christendom there are a lot of errors we hold on to either in ignorance or willfully.
A few of such errors are: 1)      Name it and claim it Continue reading

Conviction or Condemnation

By Miss Mo

For the past few month, I had been hearing some messages from church that have really been hammering on the soon coming of Jesus Christ and even the news just piles on the impending doom of the end. This impending doom and the messages from children of God that I had been hearing really started to point out my errors to me and I was in a conundrum, I was wondering why the word of God was coming to me when it seemed as though there was so little time to make the changes I needed to make so I asked God why His word was coming to me if He knew the time was so near, was it just to condemn me? And if I was going to hell anyway, would it not be better for me if I “quit while I was ahead”? I mean, why not keep sinning if I have already missed the mark? Thoughts floated in my mind for weeks. Continue reading

Dealing with the Consequences

by Yewande Olamiju

Are you sitting in gloom, wondering, “How long, Lord, till I get out of this? I made a mistake, but will I pay for it for ever? Is there no way out? no end in sight? Is this unreedemable? Lord, are You no longer concerned about what I’ m going through?”

Are you going through some dark days because of the wrong choices you made? Like David, repent and receive God’s forgiveness. Trust and believe God when He says that : Continue reading

Truth: A Person, a Word or both?

By Omolola Oriogun

I often heard statements like this: “I’m telling you the truth; the truth of the matter is; GOD knows I’m saying the truth.” When I hear such, I wonder what truth is?!!!

Ask anyone today, “What is truth?”, and you’re sure to start an interesting conversation. Try it on a university campus and you’re likely to receive laughter, scorn, and derision. The concept of truth has clearly fallen on hard times, and the consequences of rejecting it are ravaging human society. So let’s go back to the starting point and answer the question: What is truth? Continue reading

Prepare for the Life Which is To Come

by Yewande Olamiju

There’s this life and there’s the life to come. This life is the one we’re currently living here and now on Planet Earth while the life which is to come is the one we’ll live forever and ever, in Heaven or in Hell. The life which is to come  lasts forever and ever and ever. This eternal destination has no end.

Where do you want to spend eternity? Continue reading

God-substitute

Put God first He’ll put you first. Put Him second, He’ll put you last.

I heard these words in a service in church and have never been able to forget them. I was expecting that the end of the sentence would read put Him second He’ll put you second. But after some bible study I realised that if I didn’t give God first place in my life, then things would quickly unravel and I’ll end up flat on my face. If God is not on the throne of my heart and first in my life then whoever or whatever was the usurper, seating in God’s place would keep me separated from God. Continue reading

When I don’t know which way to go… The bible is my wisdom

by Miss Mo

Late last year, I saw a video of Tyler Perry laying hands on Bishop T.D. Jakes. This video rattled my beliefs because it seemed unnatural that a Christian (and I use this word loosely) actor/movie producer will have the spiritual audacity to lay hands on someone that is so renowned in christendom. So I set out to do the research as to why this might be okay according to the scriptures.

Here’s what I found: Continue reading

Hearing the Truth

by Yewande Olamiju

A man of God sharing what God told him regarding receiving correction said – If you are waiting for a perfect man to correct you before you can accept correction from a mortal you will not be corrected, neither will you get to where God is taking you. Is the correction scriptural? If the correction given is according to the Scriptures then accept it. Though the bearer is not perfect, God’s word is perfect.

Sometimes when  corrected or criticised, we are quick to quote the scripture “speak the truth in love”, Continue reading

God’s Answers to Your requests

Adapted from a sermon by Pastor Dele Oyeleru of TCBC, Ejigbo

Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, unto all that are carried away captives…….That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place. For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end (Jer 29:4, 10-11).

The Israelites were asking God for liberation from captivity in Babylon yet God’s response was Continue reading

JESUS, our Comforter

by Omolola Oriogun

It was 23:04pm Sunday night and I was already tucked in bed, I whispered some words of prayer, thanking GOD for the whole day. While I was praying, my thoughts ran through the whole day, “went to church; went for my girlfriend’s engagement party that same day, had a wonderful time out with my family when we had dinner together, watched some comedies, and then, going to bed,” therefore, I was praying with a very big smile.

My phone beeped while praying Continue reading

Help! My Doubt Scares Me

by Omolola Oriogun

Have you ever doubted your faith? Ever imagined “can GOD do this? We all have doubts from time to time. We may doubt that our boss really hit a hole-in-one at the golf course last weekend, or that our best friend really caught a fish as big as the one he claimed to catch, or that the strange looking guy on that light night TV show was really abducted by alien beings from a distant galaxy.  

Sometimes the things we doubt aren’t really that important, but other times they are. And the more important something is to us, the more personally invested we are in it, the scarier it can be to start having doubts about it. So when Christians begin to have doubts about something as significant as the truth of their Christian faith, it’s quite understandable that this might worry or even frighten them.   Continue reading