Category Archives: Spiritual Journey

Water-Walker


This is How Some of Our Conversations Go… LOL

Peter: Lord, if it is you, ask me to come.

Jesus: It is I, come.

Peter: *steps out of boat* *walks on water*

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Me: Lord, if it is you, ask me to come.

Jesus: It is I, come.

Me: If it is really you, Lord, wave your hands and ask me to come again.

Jesus: *waves* Come.

Me: Hmm Is it really, truly you? Turn around three times, jump up and say “come” in Arabic.

Jesus: Haha! Just trust me, child! 🙂

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“And you will hear a voice in your ear saying, ‘this is the way, walk ye in it’…” – Isaiah 30:21b

Hearing the voice is the easy part, taking the step out of the boat is scary. What if I sink? What if the water gets too cold? What if…? What if…? I never run out of ‘what ifs’, there’s always the possibility of something going wrong.
But what is faith if we don’t take that leap? What is faith if I can’t trust that He’ll keep me from sinking? And what if I begin to sink? Well, just like He did for Peter, He’ll find a way to lead me safely to shore. In the end, it’ll all be for my good.
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Me: *takes leap of faith*

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God Is In The Details


After an extremely stressful week and an equally tiring weekend, I was both physically and psychologically exhausted last night, yet for some weird reason I couldn’t sleep. After spending a while tossing and turning in bed, I got out my PC and decided to do some writing. It was about 3AM this morning when sleep finally came. I remember thinking I had to be up in a few hours if I planned to get to the office on time and saying a quick prayer for strength to wake up early enough. I’m not sure exactly what time I woke up but I know I was at the office earlier than I’ve been in a while. During the course of the day, it sort of dawned on me how a simple prayer for something seemingly inconsequential for such a powerful God had been answered.
The ability to trust God for the big stuff, knowing how He does wondrous works, may be easy. We know to trust Him to bring us to an expected end…
For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome. Jeremiah 29:11(NLT).
We believe He is in control of the final outcome. We can trust Him for the generality of His plans. Can we apply that same level trust for the minute details of our lives? Can we trust His method in leading us to that expected end?
As humans, it’s normal for us to want to have some kind of control of the details. We unconsciously say to God, “You handle the big stuff, the things I can’t figure out on my own, but stay away from these little details I can control”. We do this forgetting that it is the coming together of the little details that bring about the big stuff.
The events of this morning reminded me that God wants to be involved in the details, the part of my ordinary life where I easily edge Him out, the areas I believe I have enough wisdom to figure out on my own… What to eat, what to wear, how to act, the small things. As the loving Father that He is, He’s just as interested in the small stuff as He is in the big. Living in faith should not be restricted to certain areas only. I’m not saying that our brains are now totally useless and that we should decline to take responsibility for our living, what I’m saying is that God wants to be involved in the process. It is in trusting Him with the details that we really show we have faith in His ability to lead our lives the way He wills. Invite Him into your daily walk, don’t edge Him out. Involve Him in the details.

P.S. This was supposed to go up yesterday, but I think I slept off after writing. Two days of holiday Nigerians!!! Whoop! What are your plans?

7000 reserved men


This year, one of my goals is to read the Bible chronologically from start to finish… (Thank God for the You Version Bible App).
Today’s reading, 1Kings 17-19, is centered around the prophet Elijah. While reading today, I came across the part where Elijah was saying to God that he was the only one left who had not bowed down to Baal and God told him that He’d preserved seven thousand men who had not bowed to Baal.
As I was reading this, something struck me… I’m one person who gets easily influenced and can ultimately be sidetracked so I’ve found it as good advice to guard my heart with all diligence. Since I decided to ‘live intentionally’ a while back, I’ve tried to cut out as much negativity as I can and surround myself with people who uplift me but trust, this hasn’t been as easy as it sounds. Many times, I take long breaks from twitter, especially when it feels like I’ve taken in way too much negativity or idle talk.
Earlier today, I was on twitter and one of the people I follow was talking about how we can live our ‘ordinary’ lives in such a way that we are worthy of sainthood… Everything she said was just on point! The purpose of this post isn’t to recap all that she said but it just made me realize how I’m not the only one who’s striving to live life intentionally as God ordained. I’m not the only one who is fighting the good fight. God has preserved for Himself 7,000 men who haven’t bowed to Baal. I’m using twitter as an example because I’m quick to point out just how negative that place can be but the truth is maybe I’m the one following the wrong crowd. Even on twitter, there are many who haven’t allowed themselves to be influenced by the world’s system. Of course, I knew this before now. Not everyone I follow there is negative or engages in idle talk, but it dawned on me really well today because I’d been meditating on that particular verse from my daily Bible reading.
Elijah was discouraged because it seemed like he was fighting all by himself… Maybe if he’d been aware of the other 7,000, or if he had them around him, he’d have been better equipped to confront Jezebel.
Anyway, before I go off on a tangent here, I guess my point is we aren’t alone in this ‘walk’.. There are 7000 others who we can lean on for support, inspiration, encouragement, and everything else we will need on this pilgrimage. Surround yourself with that lot. Choose your influence.

Home…


image

You are my hiding place… My place of quiet refuge.  I run to You to escape from the noise of the world. Away from all the distractions life provides, I come home. Here, I can forget about the pressures of the constantly demanding world with its persistent nagging. I can ignore the constant chiming of the clock, for here, time is of no essence. Everything stands still…
At ease.
Apart from You, I cannot overcome the constant need to do, with You, just being is… Perfection. No one to impress, no need to be my best. I just am…
Content.
I find no reason to keep alert.
Relaxed.
Gratified.
Pleased.
If someone were to ask me now how I feel, my response is simple, “I cannot complain”… Not because I’m trying not to, or because I want to stay positive… I honestly have no reason to. I don’t have to try. I don’t have to do anything. I just am…
Complete.
My happy place. Does this aptly describe it? That sounds like something spurred on by activity. Do I even feel? But it feels good if I have to describe a feeling. Beyond good. It is more than a feeling now, I just am….
Calm.
No pressure. No frenzied unrest. This peace, it engulfs me. I could stay here forever.
I must go out again to face the world. I can’t escape what needs to be done… but I carry You in my spirit as a reminder that this; what is known, what is seen, shall pass. Soon I’ll be home…
Quiet.
Alive.
Me.
To simply affirm life, not to bring order out of chaos, or to suggest improvements in creation… My focus is simply to wake up to the very life we are living. That’s all that matters right now. Make the most of what is here now…
Our silent laughter. Our peaceful moments. This is the life that is truly life. This is the place I constantly yearn for…
My deepest longing is You.

Longing…


O God, I have tasted Thy goodness, and it had both satisfied me and made me thirsty for more. I am painfully conscious of my need for further grace. I am ashamed of my lack of desire. O God, the Triune God, I want to want Thee; I long to be filled with longing; I thirst to be made more thirsty still. Show me Thy glory, I pray Thee, so that I may know Thee indeed. Begin in mercy a new work of love within me. Say to my soul, “Rise up my love, my fair one, and come away.” Then give me grace to rise and follow Thee up from this misty lowland where I have wondered so long.—- A. W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God

I haven’t read anything in recent times that captures my thoughts so well. It’s a constant longing… As I get to know Him, I am satisfied, and the more I am hungry. I didn’t even know that what I felt made any sense until I read this excerpt.
It’s like the feeling of being in love with that one person who satisfies you but you still cannot get enough of.
My prayer is that the more I know Him, the more I want to long to know Him. I don’t ever want to get to the point where I’ve had enough or where I could get bored.
My reflection tonight is this on the prayer above… Say to my soul, “Rise up my love, my fair one, and come away.” Then give me grace to rise and follow Thee up from this misty lowland where I have wondered so long.

A Psalm… My Psalm!!


Psalm 139 just became my new favorite Psalm. Funny how I’ve always known this Psalm (even wrote a song with the lyrics for a friend) but today it seemed to me like I was reading it for the very first time. Somehow it seemed like David had taken my very own words, like he was stealing my lines!
1 O LORD, you have examined my heart
and know everything about me. 2 You know when I sit down or stand up.
You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. 3 You see me when I travel
and when I rest at home.
You know everything I do. 4 You know what I am going to say
even before I say it, LORD. 5 You go before me and follow me.
You place your hand of blessing on my head. 6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too great for me to understand! 7 I can never escape from your Spirit!
I can never get away from your presence! 8 If I go up to heaven, you are there;
if I go down to the grave, you are there. 9 If I ride the wings of the morning,
if I dwell by the farthest oceans, 10 even there your hand will guide me,
and your strength will support me. 11 I could ask the darkness to hide me
and the light around me to become night— 12 but even in darkness I cannot hide from you.
To you the night shines as bright as day.
Darkness and light are the same to you. 13 You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body
and knit me together in my mother’s womb. 14 Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex!
Your workmanship is marvelous—how well I know it. 15 You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion,
as I was woven together in the dark of the womb. 16 You saw me before I was born.
Every day of my life was recorded in your book.
Every moment was laid out
before a single day had passed. 17 How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.
They cannot be numbered! 18 I can’t even count them;
they outnumber the grains of sand!
And when I wake up,
you are still with me! 19 O God, if only you would destroy the wicked!
Get out of my life, you murderers! 20 They blaspheme you;
your enemies misuse your name. 21 O LORD, shouldn’t I hate those who hate you?
Shouldn’t I despise those who oppose you? 22 Yes, I hate them with total hatred,
for your enemies are my enemies. 23 Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts. 24 Point out anything in me that offends you,
and lead me along the path of everlasting life.

You know the book Letters From God I mentioned in a previous post, here’s another letter based on this Psalm…
I sought you and found you hiding deep within the chambers of your heart, undisclosed and undiscovered with all the pieces of you hiding from life, true life, real life, My life. You were lonely, wandering, lost, disconnected, and unwanted. But no more. Now I am your Hiding Place. I have hidden you in the cleft of the rock, safe, secure, and protected. No ugliness can reach you. No strange or unwelcome voices can confuse you. There will be no strange, unwanted conductors playing on the strings of your heart, for I desire to be your life’s Conductor, Director, and Planner. I will find the music of your life and bring it out. You don’t know it yet, but living inside of you are symphonies of music to move the lost hearts of lonely souls toward Me. I will lead you first by My hand, then by My voice, and finally by a whisper. Then you will know all the purposes for which I created you. I have found all the pieces of you, and I am putting them back together day by day until you are ready to be displayed, totally whole, totally equipped, and totally Mine.

This! This! This!
No words!

You Are…


You are… My inheritance and my exceeding great reward
The One my soul longs for and my heart’s cry
My place of quiet refuge and my safe place
Lover of my soul and the reason for my being
My ever present help and hope for years to come
My symphony, harmony, melody and unending song
The overwhelming joy of my heart, dance of my feet, and my testimony
My keeper and my strong defense
You are my heart’s home!

Pure Joy!


“Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.” James 1: 2-4 (The Message)
Another translation says “consider it PURE JOY… Whenever you face trials of many kinds”. The book of James is one of my favorite in the Bible and this particular verse has been very dear to me for a while now.
I’m not here to “preach” this verse or anything but let me just share with you quickly some of what’s been going through my mind. The most dominant emotion for me towards the end of 2012 and coming into 2013 has been fear. I’ve been scared of making plans, of setting goals, of expectations. So when everyone was giddy about 2013 and saying how awesome it’s gonna be, I was just like O_O okay, you guys, carry on. And while I tried to believe with the rest of the world, and put down some plans on paper, I’ve just been scared of disappointments. It’s easier to not hope at all than to hope and get nothing out of it. The end of 2012 was REALLY tough for me so 2013 wasn’t looking bright at all.
Anyway, I’ve been avoiding prayers a lot lately… Mostly because I don’t want to sound all whiny, and overly emotional and spend my time complaining due to how I feel. I know this is a wrong approach, still it’s the one I took. I however have been studying the Word a lot and I’m slowly but steadily re-building my prayer life and talking to God all day. Some days are easier than others.
Okay, so I said all that to say this; I know 2013 is not going to be a walk in the park. I was talking to a friend this evening and I mentioned that I know my faith’s going to go through a lot of tests this year.. That’s when I remembered the verse I put up. I know without a doubt that there will be a lot of trials this year but the funny thing is, the fear I once felt is gone. In fact, upon this realization, I’ve been really happy this evening. I can’t explain the joy but it’s just there… “Consider it pure joy…”!!! Right now, the tests and trials are already here, I’m faced with it everyday, but today I’m joyful and I’m glad. I’m being refined and God’s desire is that I come out pure gold! Whoop! So even with everything that’s going on with me now, 2013 has suddenly began to look up. I expect to see significant change; my life changing before my very eyes. It will be rough and sometimes I’d want to give up but… God’s got me!
I’m beginning to rant.. Lemme end here. Pure joy!
Kisses,
FutureNewYorker!

I believe… I have doubts


There are some statements in the Bible that just sort of stick with me. They usually do not make much sense when I first start quietly repeating them to myself, but after a while, they become a part of me. Some of these statements have been Words of Faith that I hold on to when I’m going through tough times or I’m faced with a confusing situation. They are not typical Bible verses per se, more like simple statements that were made in connection to something else.
Sorry I seem to be blabbling, I’ll share a few examples:
* If it were not so, I would have told you (John 14:2) – This statement was made by Jesus when He said He was going to heaven to prepare a home for us. When I think of it, this is what strikes me; He doesn’t ever lie or say anything He doesn’t mean. When I find words of faith from the Bible, they aren’t just inspiring words to get me excited, He says it, because it is so. It if wasn’t so, He’s faithful enough to tell me (us).

* Lord, I believe! Help my unbelief (Mark 9:24) – This is probably the most profound verse I’ve ever read. I believe what He says. I believe that He’s working everything out for me. I believe that He’s always here and He never leaves. I believe that He loves me. I believe that He is and that He’s a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. I believe. But I also have doubts. I have my “what-if” moments. And so I love this portion of the Bible because it makes me see that it’s okay to have doubts sometimes. It’s okay for my faith to waiver. I am not alone. He can help me with my doubts. It’s okay for me to be vulnerable. It’s alright for me to wonder, but He doesn’t stop being God because of my doubts.
In this imperfect world, God is perfect. An ever present help in time of need. Our hope for years to come.

God is! He’ll always be.
Lord I believe, help me with my doubts.

Shadowlands…


There will be good times as well as not so good times. There is a time for everything. There will be times of despair. Don’t let anyone trick you into believing that it’ll always be rosy, no matter the circumstance. In those dark times, to whom do you cling?
“My aim is to raise hopes by pointing the way of life without end. This is the life God promised long ago – and HE DOESN’T BREAK HIS PROMISES!” Titus 1:2 THE MESSAGE (emphasis mine)
God never promised that there won’t be difficult times but He promised to be there even when you pass through the fire and the flood. His promises will always be true, regardless of the circumstance.
It may be difficult to see what He has said mostly because we are blinded by our pain. Reach out your hand in faith anyway, and cling to His Word.
God has given us His very great and precious promises (2 Peter 1:4) so we can participate in the exciting life that He offers and overcome the world’s corruption and He never goes back on His word or breaks His promise. If he says a thing, he watches over it to perform it. He’s not a man that He should lie, or the son or man that He would change His mind, if He says it, He’ll surely do it. Though it tarries, wait for it, it will speak.
Take Him at His word at all times, and especially when you are in the shadowlands.
His Word says:
* He will never leave us or forsake us (Deut 31:6; Heb 13:5)
* He won’t let us be tempted beyond what we can handle (1 Cor 10:13)
* When we cry out to Him, He hears and will save us (Ps 145:19)
* If we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us (James 4:8)
* If we humble ourselves, He will lift us up (James 4:10)
* If we are in need of rest, He will provide it (Matt 11:28)
* If we need strength to resist the evil one, He will supply it ( 2Thess 3:3)

It is well… Everything good will come 🙂
Kisses,
FutureNewYorker!

P.S. Today, I’m grateful for forgiveness I’ve received and for the grace to extend it to others. What are you grateful for?