At some point during the Israelites’ journey from Egypt to Canaan, they had to master their patience level with the directions of God. The lifting and settling of the cloud on the tabernacle in Numbers 9:17 were signs I believe God brought in place to protect His people from danger ahead and also to enrich their bodies with adequate rest.
“Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, after that the children of Israel would journey; and in the place the cloud settled, there the children of Israel would pitch their tents.”
Even though the children of Israel at the time were known to be a rebellious generation they obeyed these commands. Reading further from Numbers 9:19-23, the passage clarifies that it did not matter how long it took; wether a day, month or even year for the cloud to remain up or down, they obeyed according to the command of God. One could imagine the level of patience this took.
I ask myself if I would be patient enough to wait for the directions of God. Will I be patient enough for the cloud ahead of me to be lifted up before I journeyed into the next season of my life? Can I be humble enough to rest at the command of God? Because rest is just as important as carrying out the task. Some of us out of our own desires have moved ahead of God and others have come to a complete stop. I can’t stress enough the importance of discerning the directions of God.
We may not have the visible cloud that rises up and down in our time however, we have the spirit of God which speaks. In addition, we have the word of God and leaders in our churches and communities to guide us. Don’t ignore God’s direction in fear of its outcome because without guidance and leading of the spirit of God, you won’t be able to handle life as you should.
Today, I entreat you to journey and rest at the command of God.
“Show me your ways, O Lord;
Teach me Your paths.”
I’m praying for you.
It is paramount for believers in authority to understand their roles and responsibilities which come with the titles they hold. The Bible says whom much is given, much is required. It is one’s duty as a leader to direct people to the word of God in all circumstance.
Sound doctrine in this day and age has become scarce. I can’t fathom how easy it is to come across worldly counsel in the church.
We have allowed the enemy to influence our thoughts in many ways including emotions and sometimes our past. Being a leader and disciple in Christ means there’s an exposure of people requiring counsel from you from time to time. This position is delicate as in some cases you’d be the bridge between life and death for a fellow believer. When faced with challenges as such, firstly, pray and ask for wisdom from above. One can not counsel without The Word.
“But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.”
Search within your thoughts for the above qualities; it is unwise to counsel for selfish desires and ego boast.
Secondly, It is dangerous to speak heedlessly as this could cause more harm than good. Be attentive and compassionate.
“Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each other.”
Thirdly, be cautious in making reference to past experience that you’re yet to be healed of. It is better to avoid if possible, as emotions could set in and you may unknowingly lead a soul astray due to hurt and pain. Nevertheless, it’s good to use your experience as means to strengthen and encourage.
Also confidentiality is key! Whatever you’re told is for your ears only unless stated otherwise or someone is in serious physical danger. If you feel the need to share with a third party, ask permission before doing so. Gossip is an unwise act! A lot of leaders have lost souls and respect from the church for breaching confidentiality.
Lastly, the pulpit isn’t a platform to vent your anger and frustration on an individual. Addressing issues in person and in prayer is far more profitable.
The role of leadership comes with a level of trust and responsibilities which shouldn’t be taken lightly. The flocks are not yours, they are God’s; therefore lead and serve wisely by The Word.
1 Peter 5:2
“Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as oversees, not by compulsion but by willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock.”
I’m praying for you.
“Can two walk together, unless they are agreed?”
One of the things that keep relationships strong is agreement. When two parties come together in one accord, it promotes unity and bond. This isn’t any different with our walk with Christ. God has great plans for us however for manifestation, we ought to be one-minded with Him.
Our heavenly father is a gentleman not a dictator and as such, He has given us free-will. His desire is for us to choose and agree with His will for our lives. When we loose hope and turn our backs on God, we disagree with Him and a house divided against itself will not stand (Matthew 12:25).
God knows the strength and power that comes with unity. Remember the Tower of Babel? The people had strong bond and agreement that God had to intervene before the tower reached Heaven.
Genesis 11:6 & 7
“And the Lord said, “Indeed the people are one and they all have one language, and this is what they begin to do; now nothing that they propose to do will be withheld from them. (7) Come, let Us go down and there confuse their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.”
I pray you agree with God’s language; the language of His will. No matter how bad or good last year was, continue to remain in one accord with Him for you remain in His thoughts.
“Now acquaint yourself with Him, and be at peace; thereby good will come to you”.
I’m praying for you.
The Lord is calling out His people to seek Him truly. We are in challenging times where the enemy would distract believers with the least of things therefore, one must remain vigilant. Destruction is coming to the earth and God does not want His children to be found wanting. He is calling us just as He cried out to the children of Israel to repent. We must take heed and run to Him before it is too late.
One of the things I have learnt this year is to remain in Christ, Him alone!
Listen, the enemy isn’t after material things. No, not at all! He is after your salvation and position in Christ. He wants to control your mind by whispering lies, guilt, shame etc. His aim is for you to dwell on these to keep you distracted from the truth. Once distracted, you would begin to doubt the word of God which then allows him to freely control your entire life.
So before he does his worse, stop him at his first.
Renew your mind with the word of God daily, pray without ceasing and resist carnality. Know that this fight is not against flesh and blood. Keep focused and rest in the Lord, knowing you have victory over satan.
1 Corinthians 10:12
“Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he falls.”
I’m praying for you.
As I read through the book of Ezekiel 8, I felt a way about God I’ve never felt before. I felt the pain, anger, sorrow and sadness in His words.
The Lord was hurt.
The children of Israel in the Old Testament proved to be one of the most rebellious group of people to ever live. God gave them everything they asked for; great leaders, kings, food, water, peace, dominion etc. Their daily needs were provided yet they rebelled against God.
God lifted up Ezekiel at a point and showed him what the Israelites were up to.
What they did in the dark when no one was watching; the incense they burnt to lesser gods, the idol worshipping and all sorts of abomination. God was hurt and disappointed. He was angry and promised judgement on Israel.
He handpicked Israel out of many nations to be His people, they were close to His heart yet they neglected God. How painful?!
It was not God’s intention to be angry with His children. He loved them very much that even in His anger there remained compassion; He had strong fatherly love for them.
“Oh how can I give up, Israel?
How can I let you go?
How can I destroy you like Admah or demolish you like Zeboiim?
My heart is torn within me and my compassion overflows”.
Our generation is no different, if not worse. Just like the children of Israel, we are playing the harlot; running to everything but God for solution. Seeking contentment in material things; worshipping our houses, money, cars, titles, fornication, adultery, malice, unforgiveness etc.
Do we realise that the King of kings Himself handpicked us from the lot? Do we know that we are dear to His heart and called according to His will and purpose?
1 Peter 2:9
“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim His praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light”.
It is heartbreaking even as human to give your all to someone and not have your love reciprocated. I believe it hurts God too when we turn our backs on Him. I don’t know about you but the thought of my actions grieving God carries an unpleasant feeling to my heart. We shouldn’t take God back to when He regretted creating man (Genesis 6:6).
Christ desires to be pleased with us and not to feel hurt by us.
When we truly know who we are in Christ, there would be no desire in us to go against His will, we would love Him and reject the world. I pray that we return this amazing love given to us by God through His son Jesus Christ.
“And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength. This is the first commandment.”
I’m praying for you,
“For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it.”
Many a time the word of God come to us and we expect it to work magic. Some of us really believe that once we shout the loudest ‘Amen’ or the popular ‘I receive it in Jesus name’, it would happen automatically.
Now, I strongly believe those words are powerfully; Jesus Himself said in John 6:63 …….. “The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life”.
Again, Proverbs 18:21…… “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat it’s fruits”.
By all means speak those words. On the other hand, there is a part that one has to play there after. Which is, to mix those words with FAITH.
To really profit from the word of God one must apply faith. It is paramount.
It is impossible to please God without faith (Hebrews 11:6).
When the Lord gave me this word, He also dropped the perfect example in my heart. He said, applying faith is like someone giving you food ingredients. You are given onions, tomatoes, spices, rice, meat etc and the person walks away. Tell me this, are those ingredients going to walk to the kitchen, wash themselves, set themselves on fire and cook for you to consume? (My answer was obviously a ‘no’).
He said you need to play a part in making them edible; wash them, add together to cook, then serve yourself in the end.
Just like faith, when you receive the ingredients (word), go to the kitchen (presence of God, seek understanding) and cook the food (apply wisdom/directions given). Then serve yourself (manifestation of the word).
Clearly, voicing out that one has faith is not enough; works must follow. The Bible says for as the body without spirit is dead; so faith without works is dead also (James 2:26).
Practical faith could be for instance, going for the job interview God told you you would get, forgiving your wife/husband and opening your heart to the marriage God told you He would restore, waking up and thanking God for the better life He promised, loving that child/person before God changes him/her, rejoicing and working hard towards the increase of your ministry at it’s lowest season.
Faith is fundamental in our walk with Christ. Without it, the manifestation of God’s power ceases.
At a point during Jesus’ ministry, He did not do many miracles due to unbelief (Matthew 13:58). All through scripture, many received miracles and sustained their lives through faith; Abraham, Samson, Ezekiel, Hannah, Esther, Samuel, Rahab, David etc.
It is not always easy, nevertheless the word of God without your faith will not produce profit. It doesn’t matter who lay hands on you, your faith is still required for manifestation of the word.
When it becomes difficult to believe and apply faith, like the man in Mark 9:24 with the epileptic son did, cry out to God “lord I believe; please help my unbelief.”
Without God it is impossible to belief and have faith as we ought to.
Ask Him to sustain your faith, empower and strengthen it.
“But the scripture has confined all under sin, that the promise by faith in Christ Jesus might be given to those who believe.”
I’m praying for you,