Seedtime and Harvest

Adapted from the book Purpose and Choice by Afolabi Oladele

1) Sow always

Make the most of every opportunity (Eph 5:16)

Sow your seed in the morning, and at evening let your hands not be idle, for you do not know which will succeed, whether this or that, or whether both will do equally well (Eccl 11:6 NIV)

Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant (Eccl 11:4 NLT)

2) Sow big

Remember this—a farmer who plants only a few seeds will get a small crop. But the one who plants generously will get a generous crop (2 Cor 9:6 NLT)

And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much. And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing. And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury: For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living (Mark 12:41-44)

3) Don’t eat up all your seed

For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat (2 Cor 9:10)

God understands the difference between what you need to eat and what you need to plant. Remember this in your daily choices.

4) A seed dies (has to be given up to God) before it multiplies

I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives (John 12:24 NLT).

5) Plant what you want to harvest

The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good (Gen 1:12 NIV)

Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant. Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit (Gal 6:7-8 NLT)

6) Plant in the right place Don’t plant on stony ground or among thorns (Matt 13:1-23).

7) Maintain your field

Remove weeds of unforgiveness, doubt, disobedience and deception, and water your seed with your confessions of faith.

“So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God (Matt 5:23-24 NLT)

But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord (James 1:6-7 NIV).

From the fruit of their mouth a person’s stomach is filled; with the harvest of their lips they are satisfied (Prov 18:20 NIV)

It’s Getting Serious

Originally posted on The Life Project:

Though you already know all this, I want to remind you that the Lord at one time delivered his people out of Egypt, but later destroyed those who did not believe. And the angels who did not keep their positions of authority but abandoned their proper dwelling—these he has kept in darkness, bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day. In a similar way, Sodom and Gomorrah and the surrounding towns gave themselves up to sexual immorality and perversion. They serve as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.

Jude 5-7

Jude isn’t messing around in this letter; he gets right into his indictment of false teachers and frauds.  In this paragraph, he cites three Old Testament examples to make a point that his recipients had best not listen to these people.  There is an underlying premise in all of this that isn’t entirely…

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Fiery Trials are Not Strange

Some of the trials we face as the children of God can be likened to wheat being manually threshed or going through the potter’s kiln.

During threshing, grain is spread on the threshing floor and either beaten with sticks or walked on by a yoke of oxen. The chaff is then separated from the grain by a process called winnowing – where both chaff and grain are placed in a flat tray and then tossed up and down in the air. As they rise up in the air, the paper-weight chaff is blown away while the heavier grains fall back into the tray.

There are times we feel like we are just being tossed up and down – like grains being winnowed – with no end in sight and for no obvious reason. Other times we feel crushed like grains being trampled under a heavy team of oxen.

God says, fiery trials are not strange, for His children. So if you are suffering according to God’s will, keep on doing what is right and trust yourself to the God who made you, for he will never fail you (1 Pet 4:19 TLB). These trials will make you partners with Christ in his suffering, and afterwards you will have the wonderful joy of sharing his glory in that coming day when it will be displayed.

Further Reading
The Tea Cup

There was a couple who used to go England to shop in a beautiful antique store. This trip was to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. They both liked antiques and pottery, and especially teacups.

Spotting an exceptional cup, they asked, “May we see that? We’ve never seen a cup quite so beautiful.”

As the lady handed it to them, the teacup spoke.

“You don’t understand,” it said, “I have not always been a teacup. There was a time when I was just a lump of red clay. My master took me and rolled me pounded and patted me over and over and I yelled out, ‘Don’t do that. I don’t like it! Let me alone,’ but he only smiled, and gently said, ‘Not yet!’

“Then. WHAM! I was placed on a spinning wheel and suddenly I was spun around and around and around. ‘Stop it! I’m getting so dizzy! I’m going to be sick!’, I screamed. But the master only nodded and said, quietly, ‘Not yet.’ “He spun me and poked and prodded and bent me out of shape to suit himself and then….then he put me in the oven. I never felt such heat. I yelled and knocked and pounded at the door. ‘Help! Get me out of here!’ I could see him through the opening and I could read his lips as he shook his head from side to side, ‘Not yet.’

“When I thought I couldn’t bear it another minute, the door opened. He carefully took me out and put me on the shelf, and I began to cool. ‘Oh, that felt so good! Ah, this is much better,’ I thought. But, after I cooled he picked me up and he brushed and painted me all over. The fumes were horrible. I thought I would gag. ‘Oh, please; stop it, stop it!!’ I cried. He only shook his head and said. ‘Not yet!’

“Then suddenly he put me back in to the oven. Only it was not like the first one. This was twice as hot and I just knew I would suffocate. I begged. I pleaded. I screamed. I cried. I was convinced I would never make it. I was ready to give up.

“Just then the door opened and he took me out and again placed me on the shelf, where I cooled and waited and waited, wondering, What’s he going to do to me next? An hour later he handed me a mirror and said ‘Look at yourself.’ And I did.

“I said, ‘That’s not me; that couldn’t be me. It’s beautiful. I’m beautiful!’

“Quietly he spoke: ‘I want you to remember, then,’ he said, ‘I know it hurt to be rolled and pounded and patted, but had I just left you alone, you’d have dried up. I know it made you dizzy to spin around on the wheel, but if I had stopped, you would have crumbled. I know it hurt and it was hot and disagreeable in the oven, but if I hadn’t put you there, you would have cracked. I know the fumes were bad when I brushed and painted you all over, but if I hadn’t done that, you never would have hardened. You would not have had any color in your life. If I hadn’t put you back in that second oven, you wouldn’t have survived for long because the hardness would not have held. Now you are a finished product. Now you are what I had in mind when I first began with you.'”

God knows what He’s doing in each of us. He is the potter, and we are His clay. He will mold us and make us, and expose us to just enough pressures of just the right kinds that we may be made into a flawless piece of work to fulfill His good, pleasing and perfect will.

So when life seems hard, and you are being pounded and patted and pushed almost beyond endurance; when your world seems to be spinning out of control; when you feel like you are in a fiery furnace of trials; when life seems to “stink”, try this:

Brew a cup of your favorite tea in your prettiest tea cup, sit down, and have a little talk with the Potter.

–author unknown

Lovers of Pleasure

… in the last days it is going to be very difficult to be a Christian. For people will…prefer good times to worshiping God (2 Tim 3:1-5 TLB).

How much time have you spend with God this week? How many hours have you spent this week on work, the daily rat race, catching up on your favourite TV shows and series?

People who are lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God are those who spend not more than a few minutes of rushed prayers (and that’s if they spoke to God at all today) but spend much more time on easily available distractions – a busy work schedule, social media, gisting with friends, reading etc.

Getting the balance is crucial, as Jesus told Martha, “Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” (Luke 10:41-42).

The way to the riches of God’s presence is to spend quality time at His feet.

God is still waiting for you. Go spend time with Him….right now is good.

Bible Reading:
A man who loves pleasure becomes poor; wine and luxury are not the way to riches! (Prov 21:17 TLB).

Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him. With them alone he shares the secrets of his promises (Psa 25:14 MSG).

Excess Baggage

There’s only so much you can carry while on the move – some things will soon be dropped as the journey continues.

In this walk of faith, christians are described as long-distance runners and there’s only so much you can carry while on the move. To stay in the race excess weight must be stripped off (Heb 12:2).

There’s a lot of baggage that we must drop in order to complete the race set before us – the cares and anxieties of the world, the pleasure and delight and false glamour and deceitfulness of riches, the distractions of the age and the craving and passionate desire for other things.

These unnecessary weights will deceive you into putting down the only that’s important – the cross which you are called to carry daily.

We are asked to, strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. One way to do this is to give up whatever makes you less devoted to God.

We brought nothing into this world and it is certain that we can take nothing out. Travel light. Don’t be encumbered and distracted with amassing things you can’t take with you, when you leave this earth. Shed the excess weight. Drop the excess baggage.

Further Reading Heb 12:2; 2 Tim 2:4; Col 3:2; Psa 86:11

What’s Your Isaac?

What do you wish God would never ask you to give up?

What are you holding on to that God is asking you to release? What’s occupying the throne of your heart?

Abraham did not withhold Isaac his son from God when God asked him to give Isaac to God. Because Abraham was ready to sacrifice his son, God said, now I know that you fear and revere God, since you have not held back from Me or begrudged giving Me your son, your only son.

Moses preferred to share the oppression [suffer the hardships] and bear the shame of the people of God rather than to have the fleeting enjoyment of a sinful life.

Daniel gave up security, political power to honour God. Just like the three Hebrew boys he was prepared to lose his life in honor of God (see Daniel 3 & 6).

Jesus says, “Remember what happened to Lot’s wife! If you grasp and cling to life on your terms, you’ll lose it, but if you let that life go, you’ll get life on God’s terms” (Luke 17:32-33 MSG).

Let nothing hold you back from surrendering all to God. Surrender all – your life, your every thing to God.

Mind Your Language

What’s your native tongue? Lies, like the devil?

How would people describe the way you talk? Murmuring, griping, complaining? Snide, catty, caustic comments?

Is your tongue a weapon that you unleash? Or is it a channel of blessing?

I was talking about complaining about an issue when a friend said, “What else is new?” Right then I knew it was time to stop complaining and start giving thanks (Ps 34:1).

Even a fool is considered wise when he keeps his mouth shut (Prov 17:28).

Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice (Eph 4:29-31).

Further reading:

Eph 5:3-4;Eph 4:29;Col 3:8;Matt 5:37

Why Did Jesus Die?

The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross is not one of many options to the Father… it’s the only way.

Why go through a gruesome death if He’s just one of many options? Why allow men, He created, revile and mock Him? Why humble Himself even unto death?

Jesus is not a liar. Every word He says is pure (Prov 30:5). He said I am the way…no man comes to the Father except through Me (John 14:6; Acts 4:12).

I am amazed that you are turning away so soon from God who, in his love and mercy, invited you to share the eternal life he gives through Christ; you are already following a different “way to heaven,” which really doesn’t go to heaven at all. For there is no other way than the one we showed you; you are being fooled by those who twist and change the truth concerning Christ (Gal 1:6-7)

I know very well how foolish it sounds to those who are lost, when they hear that Jesus died to save them. But we who are saved recognize this message as the very power of God (1 Cor 1:18 LB)

For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is God’s powerful method of bringing all who believe it to heaven. This message was preached first to the Jews alone, but now everyone is invited to come to God in this same way (Rom 1:16 LB)

You yourselves are a case study of what he does. At one time you all had your backs turned to God, thinking rebellious thoughts of him, giving him trouble every chance you got. But now, by giving himself completely at the Cross, actually dying for you, Christ brought you over to God’s side and put your lives together, whole and holy in his presence…There is no other Message—just this one. (Col 1:21-23 MSG).

You were dead in sins, and your sinful desires were not yet cut away. Then he gave you a share in the very life of Christ, for he forgave all your sins, and blotted out the charges proved against you, the list of his commandments which you had not obeyed. He took this list of sins and destroyed it by nailing it to Christ’s cross. In this way God took away Satan’s power to accuse you of sin, and God openly displayed to the whole world Christ’s triumph at the cross where your sins were all taken away (Col 2:13-15 LB)

By his deathNow all of us, whether Jews or Gentiles, may come to God the Father with the Holy Spirit’s help because of what Christ has done for us (Eph 2:15,16,18 LB)

It was through what his Son did that God cleared a path for everything to come to him—all things in heaven and on earth—for Christ’s death on the cross has made peace with God for all by his blood. This includes you who were once so far away from God. You were his enemies and hated him and were separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions, yet now he has brought you back as his friends. He has done this through the death on the cross of his own human body, and now as a result Christ has brought you into the very presence of God, and you are standing there before him with nothing left against you—nothing left that he could even chide you for; the only condition is that you fully believe the Truth, standing in it steadfast and firm, strong in the Lord, convinced of the Good News that Jesus died for you, and never shifting from trusting him to save you. This is the wonderful news that came to each of you and is now spreading all over the world. And I, Paul, have the joy of telling it to others (Col 1:20-23 LB)

What makes us think that we can escape if we are indifferent to this great salvation announced by the Lord Jesus himself and passed on to us by those who heard him speak? (Heb 2:3 LB)

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord (Rom 6:23)

Could it be any clearer? Our old way of life was nailed to the cross with Christ, a decisive end to that sin-miserable life—no longer at sin’s every beck and call! What we believe is this: If we get included in Christ’s sin-conquering death, we also get included in his life-saving resurrection (Rom 6:6- MSG)

He died under God’s judgment against our sins so that he could rescue us from constant falling into sin and make us his very own people, with cleansed hearts and real enthusiasm for doing kind things for others (Titus 2:14)

So also Christ died only once as an offering for the sins of many people; and he will come again, but not to deal again with our sins. This time he will come bringing salvation to all those who are eagerly and patiently waiting for him (Heb 9:28 LB)

Further Reading

1 Thes 5: 9-10;Gal 3:13;Rom 6:7,18;Col 2:13-15;1 Pet 1:18-19

My Times Are In Your hand

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee (Isa 26:3).

Peace that exceeds anything you can understand comes when your mind is stayed on God. You have peace when you keep your heart on Jesus and not your circumstances and capacities (or lack thereof). If you keep your eyes on the stormy waves you’ll sink like Peter began to sink when he walked on water (Matt 14:22-31), and you’ll doubt God’s love like the disciples did when they said, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” (Mark 4:36-41).

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank Him for His answers. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus. (Phil 4:6-7 TLB).

Commit yourself to God, lean on Him, and hope confidently in Him. Free yourself from the shackles of worry and anxiety over the future. Your times are in His hands. There’s no need to bite your nails or wring your hand in worry. Your times are in His hands.

Faithful Service

And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man’s, who shall give you that which is your own? (Luke 16:12)

How do you expect your business to thrive when you become a business owner, if today as an employee, you take home office supplies, falsify receipts and timesheets, and constantly run your boss down?

God commands us in Colossians 3:
Servants… don’t just do the minimum that will get you by. Do your best. Work from the heart for your real Master, for God, confident that you’ll get paid in full when you come into your inheritance. Keep in mind always that the ultimate Master you’re serving is Christ. The sullen servant who does shoddy work will be held responsible. Being a follower of Jesus doesn’t cover up bad work (Col 3:22-25 MSG).

Remember God rewards faithfulness…And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint.

Hard Times & Humility

And to keep me from being puffed up and too much elated by the exceeding greatness (preeminence) of these revelations, there was given me a thorn (a splinter) in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to rack and buffet and harass me, to keep me from being excessively exalted (2 Cor 12:7 AMP).

Sometimes we go through difficult times that we might not rely on ourselves but on God.

Paul said in 2 Corinthians 1:8-10, “We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us (2 Cor 1:8-10 NIV).

David also said, “It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees” (Psa 119:71NIV).

Be confident that those who wait on God renew their strength (Isa 40:31), God guards and keeps in perfect and constant peace those who commit themselves to Him, those who lean on Him and hope confidently in Him (Isa 26:3),

God Guides

A tourist who chooses not to follow the tour guide soon finds himself lost in a strange city  – worse still he may end up in the wrong neighbourhood. A child who refuses to hold on to Mommy’s hand could end up reported missing in the evening news.  

The Holy Spirit is our guide and we cannot afford to go about our lives without His leading. Every day, He speaks, He directs.  

He spoke to Noah about the flood (Gen 6). He shared His plans with Abraham about Israel’s future (Gen 15:13-14) and the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen 18). He gave Daniel a timeline of future world government. Jeremiah knew Israel would spend 70 years in captivity because God told him so. He also knew what he and the people of Israel were to during these 70 years in captivity.  

It’s only if you are seeking God, looking into His face that you can receive His instructions. You need to be alert, on the lookout for His next instruction. Be in a position where you can hear Him. God is not secretive – He talks. Are you listening?

  Further Reading (Psa 25:9; Psa 32:8; Isa 58:11; John 16:13).

Why Worry?

Our situation doesn’t improve or get better by us worrying (Matt 6:27). All the days of the desponding and afflicted are made evil [by anxious thoughts and forebodings], but he who has a glad heart has a continual feast [regardless of circumstances]. Prov 15:15 AMP

Doctors usually encourage patients to have a positive outlook because the state of their heart can either speed up their recovery process or their downslide. A man that is sick and also battling condemnation is a man about to die. Proverbs 18:14 says, the spirit of a man will sustain his infirmity; but a wounded spirit who can bear?

Whatever valley of the shadow of death you may be walking through today – make your heart glad by remembering the promises of the One called Faithful and True. The Almighty who says ALL things work together for your good.

Not One Jot, Not One Tittle

I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not even the smallest detail of God’s law will disappear until its purpose is achieved (Matt 5:18 NLT).

Time does not change, overrun or overcome what God has said. God is not a man, that he should lie…hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good? (Num 23:19)

In the days of Joshua God said that Jericho should not be rebuilt..years later a man ventured to build Jericho in defiance and did it at the cost of his sons’ lives.

At that time Joshua pronounced this solemn oath: “Cursed before the Lord is the one who undertakes to rebuild this city, Jericho: “At the cost of his firstborn son he will lay its foundations; at the cost of his youngest he will set up its gates” (Josh 6:26 NIV).

In Ahab’s time, Hiel of Bethel rebuilt Jericho. He laid its foundations at the cost of his firstborn son Abiram, and he set up its gates at the cost of his youngest son Segub, in accordance with the word of the Lord spoken by Joshua son of Nun (1 Kings 16:34 NIV).

This is not the time to scoff saying, Where is the promise of his coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation.

Remember that the Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. But the day of the Lord WILL come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up (2 Pet 3:4,9,10).

Listen to God

In Exod the Israelites told Moses, “You speak to us and we’ll listen, but don’t have God speak to us or we’ll die” (Exod 20:19).

Today we have people who want their pastors to hear from God on their behalf. People wait in line after service just to ask their pastor, “Do you have a word for me?” Such people may soon end up in delusion because some men posing as servants of the Most High God are like Jeroboam I, with their own agenda.

Jeroboam made a fort at Shechem in the hills of Ephraim, and made that his headquarters. He also built a fort at Penuel. But then Jeroboam thought, “It won’t be long before the kingdom is reunited under David. As soon as these people resume worship at The Temple of GOD in Jerusalem, they’ll start thinking of Rehoboam king of Judah as their ruler. They’ll then kill me and go back to King Rehoboam.”

So the king came up with a plan: He made two golden calves. Then he announced, “It’s too much trouble for you to go to Jerusalem to worship. Look at these—the gods who brought you out of Egypt!” He put one calf in Bethel; the other he placed in Dan. This was blatant sin. Think of it—people traveling all the way to Dan to worship a calf! And that wasn’t the end of it. Jeroboam built forbidden shrines all over the place and recruited priests from wherever he could find them, regardless of whether they were fit for the job or not.

To top it off, he created a holy New Year festival to be held on the fifteenth day of the eighth month to replace the one in Judah, complete with worship offered on the Altar at Bethel and sacrificing before the calves he had set up there. He staffed Bethel with priests from the local shrines he had made. This was strictly his own idea to compete with the feast in Judah; and he carried it off with flair, a festival exclusively for Israel, Jeroboam himself leading the worship at the Altar   (1 Kings 12:25-33 MSG).

No man of God should take the place of the Holy Spirit in your life. Deuteronomy 4:33 shows that people survive encounters with God.

God is inviting you to come into His presence. He’s willing and ready to teach you His will. The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you” (Psa 32:8 NLT).

Spend time with God today. He’s expecting you.

Live Intentionally

Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete, but [only] one receives the prize? So run [your race] that you may lay hold [of the prize] and make it yours. Now every athlete who goes into training conducts himself temperately and restricts himself in all things. They do it to win a wreath that will soon wither, but we [do it to receive a crown of eternal blessedness] that cannot wither. Therefore I do not run uncertainly (without definite aim). I do not box like one beating the air and striking without an adversary. But [like a boxer] I buffet my body [handle it roughly, discipline it by hardships] and subdue it, for fear that after proclaiming to others the Gospel and things pertaining to it, I myself should become unfit [not stand the test, be unapproved and rejected as a cointerfeit] (1 Cor 9:24-27 AMP).

Hell wasn’t where the rich man in Luke 16 wanted to end up…but that’s where he ended up. His every day choices led him there…Why? Because he did not live intentionally.   God commands us to work out (cultivate, carry out to the goal, and fully complete) your own salvation (Phil 2:13 AMP).

Live intentionally. Jesus is coming back soon.


Jesus said of the devil, “He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.”

In Matthew 4, Satan quoted from Psalm 91 when he tempted Jesus, but whatever he had to say was not God-breathed (inspired). Take heed how and what you hear. Even when what Satan says appears correct…Jesus says he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own.

In Acts 16, the girl possessed with the spirit of divination said these men are the servants of the Most High yet Paul was grieved. Why? What she said was correct – they were the servants of the Most High God.

God commands us to test every spirit. Prove all things. Take heed what and how you hear (1 John 4:1; 1Thess 5:21; Mark 4:24; Luke 8:18)

The gift of suspicion is not the gift of discerning of spirits. Everyone has the first only the Holy Spirit gives the latter.

Redeeming the Time

Live purposefully and worthily and accurately, not as the unwise and witless, but as wise (sensible, intelligent people), Making the very most of the time [buying up each opportunity], because the days are evil. Therefore do not be vague and thoughtless and foolish, but understanding and firmly grasping what the will of the Lord is (Eph 5:15-17 AMP).

In Lagos, a lot of man hours are spent daily in traffic. One of the ways to redeem time is to use time spent commuting daily to work or school reading books or listening to sermons stored on your phone (that is if you are not the one driving).

How do you redeem the time? Please share.

Knowing God

by Yewande Olamiju

As you start the 2nd month of this year, don’t fall again into the rut of merely following a list of dos-and-don’ts you read in the Bible.Why? Because…a written letter does not take the place of a relationship. Relationships are built on communication and interaction. Jesus said in John 17:3, “this is eternal life, that they may know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom Thou hast sent.” Apart from communion with Christ we can’t live (John 15:4).

The Israelites in the wilderness were satisfied with just hearing about God (much like reading His autobiography). They knew His acts but not His ways (Psa 103:7)…and we know how they ended. The Bible records that with many of them God was not well pleased. Be like Moses who longed to gaze into God’s face and not just read or hear about His mighty acts.

The Ephesian Church were good in doctrine but had left their first love, Jesus Christ (Rev 2:4, 6).

John 14:16; 15:26; 16:13 and 1 John 2:27 show that we need the Holy Spirit for every single area of our lives. Sometimes an option or a decision seems right but …there is a way which seems right to a man and appears straight before him, but at the end of it is the way of death (Prov 14:12 AMP). If you have ears, listen to what the Spirit is sayING (Rev 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13,22). What’s important is to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. It’s those that are led by the Spirit of God that are the sons of God (Rom 8:14).

Jesus, the author and captain of our faith, was completely dependent on the Heavenly Father (John 5:30). Prov 3:5 says lean not on your own understanding…in ALL your ways acknowledge Him – care about what God thinks on every issue. Ask for His will.

God still speaks. He still leads. He still gives directions (Rom 8:14; 1 John 2:27 AMP, Amos 3:7 AMP).

Like Paul, our cry should daily be – that I may know Him (Phil 3:7-10).

Do you believe in miracles?

by Yewande Olamiju

One of the headlines of Jewish Telegraph of July 2014 reads “Their God changes the path of our rockets mid-air.”

The response of the church to this news has been varied and diametrically opposite. Some Christians believe it’s yet another testimony of God awesome power of deliverance on behalf of the Jews, yet there are other Christians that believe that God fighting for Israel is a myth.

Will God do such miracles today? Will God fight against another nation in defense of Israel today?

We read in Joshua 10:14 that the LORD fought for Israel. Josh 10:42 says, the LORD God of Israel fought for Israel. Joshua 23:3 says, the LORD your God is He that hath fought for you.

Based on God’s everlasting covenant with Israel (Gen 15:18-21; Gen 13:14-17; Gen 22:2, 12, 16-18; Deut 30:1-10) and Ezekiel 38-39 prophecy of a future war involving Israel, yes, God will still fight for and on behalf of Israel.

Does God still perform such miracles? Yes. The bible is full of supernatural events such as:

Battle conquests – armies conquered by angels of the Lord’s host on behalf of the people of Israel (2 Kings 19:35; 2 Kings 7:6-8), an entire army struck with blindness by the LORD and led straight into Israel’s hands (2 Kings 6:8-23), Pharaoh’s army thrown into the sea (Exod 14), the walls of Jericho fell down flat (Josh 6), the sun and moon stood still for a whole day (Josh 10:12-14).

Prison breaks – supernatural escapes from prisons (Acts 5:17-23; Acts 12:6-18), chains falling off (Acts 6:7), iron city gates opening of their own accord (Acts 6:10), an earthquake opens prison cells and unlock chains (Acts 16:25-26).

People rescued from what would be called “certain-death” – Daniel in the lion’s den (Dan 6), 3 Hebrew boys thrown into a fiery furnace come out without a single burn (Dan 3).

People raised from the dead – Lazarus after four days in the grave (John 11); The Shunemite woman’s son (2 King 5:18-37); the widow of Zarephath’s son (1 Kings 17:8, 17-24); a widow in Nain’s son (Luke 7:11-15); Jarius’ daughter (Mark 5:22-24,35-43); Dorcas (Acts 9:36-43); Eutychus (Acts 20:7-12)

Multiplication of food (Mark 6:30-44; 2 Kings 4:1-7, 42-44, 1 kings 17:8-16).

Healing – Peter’s shadow healed people (Acts 5:15-16) while people were healed when handkerchiefs and aprons that touched Paul’s body were brought to them (Acts 19:12). Jesus healed “all manner of sickness and disease” (Matt 4:23).

In Matthew 13:58, we read that Jesus did not perform many miracles there because of their unbelief and lack of faith. Likewise if you choose to not believe then like the 10 spies and the unbelieving Israelites in the wilderness you will not see the Promise Land (Num 14:22-23).

In 2 Kings 7, an officer in the King of Israel’s cabinet learnt this lesson too late.

And it came to pass after this, that Benhadad king of Syria gathered all his host, and went up, and besieged Samaria. And there was a great famine in Samaria: and, behold, they besieged it, until an ass’s head was sold for fourscore pieces of silver, and the fourth part of a cab of dove’s dung for five pieces of silver…

Then Elisha said, Hear ye the word of the Lord; Thus saith the Lord, To morrow about this time shall a measure of fine flour be sold for a shekel, and two measures of barley for a shekel, in the gate of Samaria. Then a lord on whose hand the king leaned answered the man of God, and said, Behold, if the Lord would make windows in heaven, might this thing be? And he said, Behold, thou shalt see it with thine eyes, but shalt not eat thereof…

For the Lord had made the host of the Syrians to hear a noise of chariots, and a noise of horses, even the noise of a great host: and they said one to another, Lo, the king of Israel hath hired against us the kings of the Hittites, and the kings of the Egyptians, to come upon us. Wherefore they arose and fled in the twilight, and left their tents, and their horses, and their asses, even the camp as it was, and fled for their life…

And the people went out, and spoiled the tents of the Syrians. So a measure of fine flour was sold for a shekel, and two measures of barley for a shekel, according to the word of the Lord. And the king appointed the lord on whose hand he leaned to have the charge of the gate: and the people trode upon him in the gate, and he died, as the man of God had said, who spake when the king came down to him.

And it came to pass as the man of God had spoken to the king, saying, Two measures of barley for a shekel, and a measure of fine flour for a shekel, shall be to morrow about this time in the gate of Samaria: And that lord answered the man of God, and said, Now, behold, if the Lord should make windows in heaven, might such a thing be? And he said, Behold, thou shalt see it with thine eyes, but shalt not eat thereof. And so it fell out unto him: for the people trode upon him in the gate, and he died (2 Kings 6:24-25, 7:1-2,6-7,16-20).

Heb 13:8 says, Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today and forever. God still performs miracles. He still delivers people from trouble, distress and captivity. He still provides by His great power. Today, He continues to heal the sick, create body parts and perform wonderful miracles too many to count.

Do you believe?