It’s the small things

We’ve all heard about not despising small beginnings, but in all honesty, I don’t know of anybody that would choose to start small if they had a choice. Nobody does, yeah we may have to grudgingly accept, that we have to grind out sleepless nights, and embrace the physical, psychological and emotionally self-mutilating things that come with success before we reach our goals, but if there was a way we could outsource the pain and self-sacrifice we would pay thousands. We are a generation of instant gratification, we incessantly record every little accomplishment, we all want to win and win quickly! We want to be the young symbol of success, Forbes 30 under 30, we want to be able to live the quotable boss babe Instagram captions (I’m guilty of this, don’t judge lol).

We want to be the sage and guru on advice from love to career to everything in between, even if we are just pushing 25 and still living with our parents. The human ego is a voracious beast that needs to be stroked and can be really difficult to control in the age of unbridled exhibitionism, it seems like we are no longer content in having or doing the little things, whether they be blessings or instructions from God.

But then we say but God that isn’t much, that isn’t something to celebrate about, that isn’t something to pay attention to and perfect, it’s nothing, it’s just a small thing. Don’t get caught up in the hype Luke 16:10 says ‘’If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities.’’

To be faithful means to be steadfast, loyal, constant, faultless, dedicated, and committed. Starting small and allowing yourself to grow steadily, doesn’t mean seeing yourself as someone who doesn’t have ambitions or is blissfully content with mediocrity, it means realizing that with big blessings and great open doors sometimes comes tremendous and overwhelming responsibilities, it may require you to develop and discard some character traits, it is better for you to make a fool of yourself as a leader of a small team of just 5 people, than as a CEO of a company with over 10,000+ staff.

A lot of us may be extremely intelligent, creative and talented but have poor social skills, we may rob people off the wrong way and actually be unlikable, we may even be too arrogant for our own good, never willing to buckle down and actually listen to constructive criticism, it is better for the Lord to use that small platform to train, refine and humble us as individuals so that when we actually go out on the big stage we are worthy representatives who bring glory to his name.

Whatever we do, no matter how small or insignificant we might feel it is, sometimes we need to get out of our head, our feelings and our constant need to compare the metaphorical size of our backyard to others and see it as an opportunity to bring Glory to God.

Give that small business or idea to God be faithful, work hard and be diligent and see what God will use it to do.

A lot of us get caught up in the size, if you are a social media creative or influencer, you may get caught up in the numbers, the likes and the comments. If you are a business owner you may get caught up in the growth and the bottom line, if you are starting a ministry you may get caught up in how much of an audience you draw in, stop chasing numbers! Chase consistency and being faithful, relax and let God do the rest, one of the most important things, is to ensure that you are developing the character skills that you will need to have when you actually get the big things you desire.

Stop being petty and spiteful, curb the gossiping, take control of your tendency to dip into the pockets of the business for personal expenses (Yes I said it lol), work on your emotional intelligence, develop a heart of service, sharpen your skills, improve your networking and communication skills, take care of the little foxes in your life that have the potential of ruining all what you have worked for, when you finally become a success (Solomon 2:15).

God is a perfectionist, he doesn’t do things in half measures, he wants us to be perfect representations of him here on earth, now those are pretty big shoes to fill and very high standards, he will never withhold any good or wholesome thing from you, however he will delay it while perfecting you if he knows you are not ready for it (even if you think you are!).

So whatever he has laid on your heart to do, whatever you find yourself doing in every sphere of life, even if you are disappointed in yourself, and you feel that after putting in so many years, you should have a bigger platform or be in a better place in life, remember that if you put your trust in God and do the necessary work you will most certainly reach your goal. Don’t look down on yourself because you started small, rather see it as a learning curve, a period of grace if you will, to perfect all that concerns you, remember the Holy Spirit is always available to lead and guide.

“Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient spirit is better than a proud one’’. Ecclesiastes 7:8

Do You Resent God?

Are you secretly mad at God? I believe a lot of Christians, have at one point or the other been unhappy or even angry with God. I know I certainly have, even if it’s just for the little or seemingly petty things, I remember I used to and still do sometimes, ask God why did he give me the snail like metabolism that I have, others can seem to eat mounds and mounds of food and get away with it and all I need to do is look at a chocolate bar and I gain 20 pounds. But on a serious note, resentment towards God, over what we feel we should have or shouldn’t have, and what our life should be and shouldn’t be is something that we all struggle with.

You see there is this thing called comparison that has us always constantly looking  at what others have and what we don’t.

Nkechi just got a new promotion at her job, Femi who hasn’t been single for more than 2 weeks, has already met a great guy and they are already picking out baby names, you log on to Instagram, and you see your friend from high school, whose lifestyle will make the   Kardashian-Jenner crew green with envy. Meanwhile, you are struggling just to make ends meet.

You’re stuck in a career you don’t like or worse still jobless and single as a dollar bill, in general you feel like your life really sucks. Then you get mad at God, first we start with the whys, why is my life like this, why me,why, why?, from the whys we graduate to, you don’t care God, you don’t care that I’m broke, you don’t care that I am unhappy, you don’t care that I feel as if  I am stuck, I mean I pray all the time and I get nothing, my faith is holding on to really thin ice right now God, don’t you feel my pain?, can’t you see that I cry myself to sleep every day, do you not know that I get embarrassed when I see  people who started out at the same pace as me, way ahead of me in life?.

I mean I could go on and on, you get the point. This is a very real temptation that has faced each and every one of us, and can lead to a hardened heart towards God if not addressed.

First of all, realize that you are not a bad person if you ever feel this way, you are however human and subject to the frailties of the human condition. This is where honesty comes in, you must be truthful about what you are feeling and exactly how you are feeling, be honest with God about this. You must also realize, that God loves you unconditionally, (see Roman 8:38-39), it is an unquestionable and undeniable fact, and something that must be settled in your heart without any dispute. That is why it is so important to spend time every day in God’s word so that you can see his promises upon your life and affirm them every day to yourself because the enemy tries to use the circumstances in our lives, to plant his lies into our subconscious, to make us question if God truly loves us, or maybe he doesn’t love us as much as our family and friends who seem to be having the easier draw of the straw than we do.

When we are fully aware that God truly loves us, then we know that he will always do what is best for us, and that might sometimes mean delaying the answers to our prayers or even denying answers to some of our prayers, especially,  if he knows that  what we are asking for is really not good for us. We may sit on our side of the grass  and covet another persons’ life but how do we know if what they have is going to be what is best for us? God loves you enough to deny you what you want sometimes because he knows it will ultimately hurt you in the end even if you don’t!

If we are certain that God loves us then we must learn to trust in his timing and his decisions for our lives, sometimes we really just have to sit back and let him have the driver’s seat even if that makes us very uncomfortable, a lot of times the resentment we feel towards God is because, we are unhappy about the way he is handling the things we told him we want to happen, and not what his will actually is for us.

This is going to be a bitter pill to swallow, but the truth is that the moment you sign up to have Jesus as your lord and savior, you relinquish all control over every area of your life. God is sovereign and he is always in control of every situation at any point in time, even when bad things happen, he still is, and will always be in control. Sometimes, we really have no other choice, but to put blind faith and trust in him, and this can be difficult,  when things seem to be very messy, every Sunday in Church we sing songs about God being faithful, we call him our way maker but when we encounter situations that we can’t understand we quickly start doubting God and trusting in his ability to do what he will say he will do. We must learn to rest in him.

Lastly, we must develop an attitude of gratitude in all circumstances, I think that sometimes, we get so caught up in wanting the big things that we forget to be thankful for the little things. Be grateful for good health, a deliciously cooked meal, the ability to pay your rent on time, the random kindness of a stranger, friends that you can rely on, that job might not be so great, but you are still able to pay your bills and somehow take vacations from time to time, you may be single with no suitor in sight, but you have the time and energy to your pursue your many passions that provide multiple sources of income for you.

In life sometimes perspective is everything, if you start looking at every good thing that happens to you no matter how small as God having your back and constantly watching out for you, instead of resenting him, you will start thanking him more, there are some things that you have, that may seem insignificant and mundane but are actually on a lot of people’s prayer list. Next time you see a friend or anybody have something that you want, give glory to God for what he has done in their lives because if he has done it for them, he will must certainly do it for you, perhaps even  much more.

Psalm 73:12-28 The Message (MSG)

11-14 What’s going on here? Is God out to lunch?
    Nobody’s tending the store.
The wicked get by with everything;
    they have it made, piling up riches.
I’ve been stupid to play by the rules;
    what has it gotten me?
A long run of bad luck, that’s what—
    a slap in the face every time I walk out the door.

 

15-20 If I’d have given in and talked like this,
    I would have betrayed your dear children.
Still, when I tried to figure it out,
    all I got was a splitting headache . . .
Until I entered the sanctuary of God.
    Then I saw the whole picture:
The slippery road you’ve put them on,
    with a final crash in a ditch of delusions.
In the blink of an eye, disaster!
    A blind curve in the dark, and—nightmare!
We wake up and rub our eyes. . . . Nothing.
    There’s nothing to them. And there never was.

 

21-24 When I was beleaguered and bitter,
    totally consumed by envy,
I was totally ignorant, a dumb ox
    in your very presence.
I’m still in your presence,
    but you’ve taken my hand.
You wisely and tenderly lead me,
    and then you bless me.

 

25-28 You’re all I want in heaven!
    You’re all I want on earth!
When my skin sags and my bones get brittle,
    God is rock-firm and faithful.
Look! Those who left you are falling apart!
    Deserters, they’ll never be heard from again.
But I’m in the very presence of God
    oh, how refreshing it is!
I’ve made Lord God my home.
    God, I’m telling the world what you do!

 

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Do you know who you are?

Having an identity is probably one of the most important things about us, it defines us and shapes how we show up in the world. Who gives us our identity? How do we know what distinguishes us from everybody else, what makes us who and what we are. Identity is such a big issue these days, in the past you were male or female, gay or straight, white, black or whatever race you chose to identify with.

Now things are different, people don’t want to identify as just male or female anymore, they feel these classifications are too restrictive based on how they feel inside, also they believe sexuality is fluid and diverse, you can love both a man or a woman just as equally or love neither if you choose to, people are breaking away from traditional markers and defining themselves on their own terms these days.

Does deciding who we want to be make things easier and is it more liberating? Does not conforming to gender specific roles, titles and societal expectations of who we should be really make us happier, more fulfilled and better. Honestly, these days, you can’t force anyone to identify in specific ways, society is heading towards a direction where everybody can decide to be who they  want to be.

Let’s take a break from society and it’s pressures for a second and examine things from another angle.It has been widely debated that children get their identity from their father, and the importance of parents in fostering healthy identities in the lives of their children, can truly never be over emphasized.

I believe that mankind was created by God, hence everything we are, and everything we think ourselves to be comes from,and has already been defined by our creator. Genesis 1:26, asserts this, the Godhead, decided to make a species of mini gods as I like to think of it, that would reflect the image and likeness of God on earth, their domain. Their primary  purpose would be to subdue, dominate it and multiply.

So, as a human being, you were created to be like God, this is your identity.

Not in physical sense as God is a spirit, but you are to reflect God in your spirit, with your virtues and with your character, anything contrary to this, is a mis-identification of your true self. This is in essence the spirit that mankind is supposed to exude, godliness, creativity, authority and a responsibility for the earth as its primary care taker. This is essentially who we are, and we lost this consciousness in the garden, and we are all in someway still trying to find our way back there.Our adversary was crafty in usurping our authority, stripping us away from our identity, and ever since it has given room to confusion and disorder.

We have all at some point in our lives been crippled with low self-esteem, self-worth and doubt, we constantly question ourselves, and we seek validation and acknowledgement, because we do not know who we are.

To disconnect from God, is to strip us of our sense of self, it is much easier to manipulate someone who doesn’t know who they are. You can tell them any lie about themselves, and they will believe you, you can steal something that is rightfully theirs right from under their noses and they wouldn’t even know.

Knowing who you are, and why you were created, is absolutely essential as a human being, more importantly as a believer in Jesus Christ, you must know that Christ died on the cross so that you could be reconciled with your father to rebuild an intimate relationship with him, then he can begin to reveal to you who you truly are.

Above all else,your creator knows the purpose of your being,he wants you to create, he wants you to be in charge, he wants you to reflect his image and most importantly he wants to use you to make the world a better place and you cannot do this if you do not know who you truly are.

People just love to define us, you’re the smart one, and you’re the pretty one, you’re the one who is good at sports, you’re the academically gifted one. We are also guilty of this, I can’t do this because I am like this or I could never do such and such because my parents said I am like this, it is time for us to stop limiting ourselves and come to the full knowledge of who we are in Christ.

xoxo

Light & Life

Light & Life

What is light,light brings illumination.
What does it mean to be illuminated, to have knowledge,to have understanding and a clear view.
Why do we need light,because without it we will stumble in the dark,we would be lost,darkness breeds fear,confusion and panic.
Who or What is the true source of light,the same who is the true source of life.
He is known as the word,the bread of life,the resurrection and the life,the true vine,the source by which all things exist and consist.
For without him nothing can exist or be created,he is the one who lighted the path of men and brought the gift of his essence eternal life to be made available to all men.
He is the way,the truth and the life,there is no other path that guarantees the hope of eternal life asides him.
There is no ambiguity,he has made it clear if you seek for things beyond the material things of this world all you have to do is look to him.

My Special Friend

Sometimes I sit and stare for hours
They say his presence is here but I feel nothing.
Week after week Sunday after Sunday
The words are spoken and heard but hardly ever felt.
I clap, I shout, I know the words by heart but sometimes it’s all a farce.
Sometimes I think he’s probably made up by fools who know no better
Who make up rules and form tales of wistful hereafters.
Sometimes I just want to do my own thing.
Meet the man of my dreams, have a couple of kids and travel by boat to Timbuktu.
And when I’ve finally convinced myself that perhaps he cannot be real, found or known
Alas, there he is knocking at the door of my heart
He’s patient, he’s kind, he’s always a gentleman, never rude, never hasty
Always willing to take his time, but persistent.
I ignore him sometimes, he annoys me sometimes but I find it hard to resist.
He asks me to sup with him, to dine with him, to sit at his feet, he asks for a lot and I’m afraid to give
He knows I will struggle, I like to be in control I do not know him, I cannot trust the unknown.
But I have to admit that when I’m alone I often think about the hole in my heart that only he can fill.
For he sticks closer than a brother and loves harder than a mother.
He knows my fears, he sees my secret tears, he understands my pain and looks beyond my flaws.
I will probably never be quite good enough,he knows, I may never respond to him the way he wants me to, I may even out rightly reject him and be downright rude.
But he’s always there knocking, seeking and asking to be my friend.