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Self-Reflection – A Part Of Your Everyday Routine

Sometimes we need time off. Time off from the noise, hustle, and bustle of everyday life. Sometimes to perceive a picture clearly, you ought to take a few steps back so that you can be a better judge of the artwork. The world is a canvas on which we all desire to leave our mark therefore we need to be intentional about every move we make. So soon, the second month of 2021 is almost over and it’s time for some self-reflection.

Self- Reflection Helps You Revise Your Plans

For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it? LUKE 14:28

As the scripture reveals, important projects require planning and I believe that there are very few things more important than our lives as individuals. We’re about to enter the third month of the year and we need to take another look at our plans before we do so. Of all the goals you had at the start of the year, which of them are in progress and which aren’t? What have you been doing right and what have you been wrong?

In the process of self-reflection, you have to be completely honest with yourself and be your harshest critic. The goal of this is to improve and be a better version of yourself for the coming month. The purpose of self-reflection is not for you to condemn and demotivate yourself but to be better and move on to the next level.

Evaluate Your Christian Life By Self-Reflecting!

Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test. 2 CORINTHIANS 13:5.

The Christian faith has standards we ought to live by and self-reflection comes to play when we consciously compare our lifestyle to the tenets of the faith. Are we living according to God’s standards in the way we treat others? Are we obeying His laws? How often do we take time to read His word? Our faith is extremely important because it determines our place in eternity. What do we have to gain if we only make physical progress in 2021 while we retrogress spiritually?

It can be easy to think your Christian life is based on how you feel. The truth nonetheless is that we cannot use our feelings to determine whether we’re in right standing with God or not. The only way we can judge our standing with God is by using His word.

Learn From Mistake and Discover Yourself

Always remember that thinking critically about your life takes you a step ahead. It is always an opportunity to assess yourself and correct your mistakes. The purpose of making mistakes is to learn from them and not to be shackled by them. Anytime you’re self-reflecting, you get to understand why certain moves you made worked well and others didn’t. Never shy away from the opportunity to self-reflect. You never know what you will discover about yourself.

Spiritual Intimacy During Dating

Dating can be a beautiful experience when it is with the right person. Two strangers can spark a wonderful connection that would last a life time. This wonderful connection doesn’t just happen. It takes a lot of time and nurturing to cultivate the purest form of love towards your significant other.

A Place For Physical Attraction

Let’s not try to discount the importance of physical attraction in romantic relationships. Being physically attracted to someone you’re in a relationship with is highly recommended. It is not shallow to value physical attraction as a critical factor in deciding who you’re going to be in a relationship with.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with having physical criteria for those you would desire to be in romantic relationships with. If your intention for dating is to find someone you would spend the rest of your life with, then searching for someone who is aesthetically pleasing to your eye, is important.

More Than Physical

The concept of attraction for a long-lasting relationship must transcend physicality. Every human is spirit, soul, and body therefore focusing on just physical attraction in dating would be detrimental in the long run. As humans are tripartite beings, it means we should expect that all aspects of our being(spirit, soul, and body) must have a role to play in our dating life. Though I submitted that physical attraction is important, we cannot rely on it as the sole factor in deciding who to date.

Spiritual Intimacy

Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? 2Corinthians 6:14

As a Christian, it is imperative that whoever you’re in a relationship with would have the same beliefs as you. Being spiritually intimate requires that both parties hold the same faith. You and your partner must be Christian in order to maximize spiritual intimacy. The more you engage in spiritual activity with your partner, the more spiritually intimate you become.

Pray Together

Prayer is communication with God therefore it is a spiritual exercise. The more we pray, the closer we get to Him, and the better we’re able to deal with life’s challenges. One way to be spiritually intimate with your partner is to pray with him or her. When the two of you join hands to communicate with God, your relationship is strengthened. When you have issues in your relationship, praying through them together is a healthy way of finding solutions.

Study The Word Together

It is a beautiful sight to see couples discussing and delving deeply into God’s word together. Whiles couples strive to get to know each other better, they should also strive to know God together. Knowing God together will increase their mutual love and respect. Couples are supposed to draw closer to God and their love will grow. When they put everything in God’s hand, God’s hand will be upon them.

Five Bible Verses To Text Your Partner on Val’s Day

Love is probably the hardest thing to define with words but it is unlikely that there’s a person residing on earth who has not experienced it. There is no special day designed by God to show love but we know very well what valentine’s day has come to meet our generation. We’re a few days away from Val’s day 2021 and we have a gift for you! Wondering what to text your partner for Val’s day? We’ve got you covered. The bible has some of the most romantic verses you can find. Yes! You heard right! Today’s Val’s day messages are coming to you straight from God’s word

Songs of Songs 2:16:  My beloved is mine and I am his; he browses among the lilies

Everyone needs words of affirmation from time to time and that includes your partner. Sometimes our partners may doubt that we love them and our words can be the assurance they need. Telling your beloved that he is yours and you are his would help clear any doubts he has about your love for him.

Songs of Songs 4:10: How delightful is your love, my sister, my bride! How much more pleasing is your love than wine, and the fragrance of your perfume more than any spice!

“My sister, my bride.” It is a beautiful thing for your bride to be like a sister to you. Sending her this message signifies closeness. It shows that you are supposed to perceive your partner as family.  Sending her this tells her that just as wine is refreshing to the body, she is refreshing to your soul.

 Songs of Songs 4:9 You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride; you have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes, with one jewel of your necklace

They say all is fair in love and war therefore in the love business, theft is legal. This is a wonderful way of telling your beloved that she has waltzed her way into your heart. Submitting that your bride has stolen your heart with a jewel of her necklace compliments her fashion sense. Women like to be told they have a great fashion sense. Texting her this on Val’s day will boost her confidence and keep her beaming with smiles.

Songs of Songs 8:7 Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it: if a man would give all the substance of his house for love, it would utterly be contemned.

This particular verse is very lyrical. It could so easily fit into a love song in contemporary times. Love and poetry are complementary and a little bit of poetic grace from the bible would definitely not hurt. Show off some lyricism to your partner as you celebrate the festival of love.

Proverbs 31:10 A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies

Appreciate your virtuous wife with this scripture. Just as rubies are rare, it is not common to find a woman who has great character. You have to appreciate your partner for all her hard work and sacrifices to make the relationship work. Relationships require effort from the parties involved and it feels amazing when to be appreciated by your partner for it.

January Is Over – Are You Still On Track?

We have a few days left in January, it’s time for some reflection.

There are usually three types of people when it comes to resolutions;

(1) the people who make an keep resolutions

(2) The people who make and break resolutions and

(3) the people who did not make any resolutions. Which category do you fall in?

FOR THOSE STILL ON TRACK.

You have done a good work so far. Perseverance and consistency are hallmarks of greatness. It is important that you stick to your goals. You have eleven more months to fight for. Sometimes when we find ourselves on track in the pursuit of our goals and dreams, complacency can set in.

We must not lose consciousness of the fact that God is the one who is behind our abilities to succeed. We must recognize God as the source of our consistency. Having a dependence on God is what would enable you to stay on track more than anything.

In as much as being fully dependent on God is essential to successfully achieving your goals and dreams for the year 2021, do not forget to put in the necessary work. Pray to God and ask Him to help you see this through but it does not mean that you shouldn’t stay disciplined and do what is physically required of you. Study hard if you have to, continue going to the gym, keep practicing etc. basically do whatever is important to achieving your 2021 goals.

FOR THOSE OFF TRACK.

for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again… (PROVERBS 24:16)

When you’re no table to stay on track, you should not quit. The fact that you had a setback in the pursuit of your 2021 goal does not mean that you cannot start over and achieve it. It is important that we learn from every setback we have had in January in order not to repeat them.

Nothing good comes easy, as such, we need to be aware of the fact that there would always be challenges. In Proverbs 24:16, we get to know that though the righteous may fail at certain things sometimes, they’re always bound to recover and attain the necessary highs. So, as a child of God do not give up. With the right efforts, you shall surely be at the top. Keep trying, keep praying, keep working.

FOR THOSE WHO DIDN’T MAKE ANY RESOLUTIONS.

And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables (Habakkuk 2:2)

Everyone might have reasons why he/she did not make resolutions for 2021. No matter what your reason may be, there is no denying that planning is a very important step to fulfilling goals. We all need to have aims, dreams and desires for this year in order to have a successful one.

If you did not make plans for this year because you did not have an idea of what you want to achieve, pray to God to reveal to you His will for your life. Once you know what God’s will for you is for 2021, it would be easier for you to run with it.

This year has only begun and we personally believe that it is going to be your best year yet regardless of how it has started for you. Continue with the plans that you made and make sure God remains central to all your goals.

The World Needs Your Talent

Your talent is any skill or ability you naturally possess. It is that particular activity or set of activities you easily excel at. Often times, you would naturally develop a passion for whatever you are talented at. Everybody on the surface of the earth is gifted with a special talent.

The reason why anyone would think he/she does not have a talent is that he/she has not discovered it yet. The truth is, God created each individual with a purpose and our talents exist to propel us towards them. We are stewards of our talents and we need to let the world benefit from them. Today, we will explore the reasons why the world needs your talent.

Our Talent Fill In The Gap

You need to believe that your innate ability is truly special and beneficial to the world. The world by nature is interconnected by individuals who knowingly or unknowingly affect one another with their roles. A farmer uses his talent to grow crops, the crops would be used by a talented chef to cook a nutritious meal for his customers.

A biochemist can use the farmer’s crops to develop solutions to certain illnesses. When everyone uses their gifts, it keeps the world balanced. Those who are deficient in your area of strength would benefit from you whiles you also benefit from their gifts. Without your talent, there would be a gap created in the world. However little we may think our talents are, we need to develop and use them to benefit society.

Our Talents Inspire Others

There are many people who have developed a passion to pursue their dreams and hone their talents by observing others accomplish the same. We have all looked up to people in one way or the other because they embody and exemplify our dreams and aspirations.

Many musicians for example try to emulate legends in their genre in order to be successful in their careers. Success in using our talents would inspire others to take steps to use theirs.

A lot of people fear to step out of their comfort zones in order to display the special talents that God has given them. When we are courageous enough to use our talents, it helps others in our churches, local communities and cities overcome their fears. Just as we look up to those who have succeeded in using their talents, others need us to use ours so that they would look up to us. Use your talent, you do not know who may be watching!

Talents Draw Men To God

Mat 5:16 KJV Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

One way to let our light shine is to use our talents effectively. When we pursue excellence with our talents, observers are going to be drawn to God as Matthew 5:16 asserts. People are drawn to the ideas of excellence and perfection.

A lot of people would be interested in finding out the source of your talent once you begin to use it in an outstanding way. The mastery of our talents would change lives when used to glorify, God. Our most crucial assignment on earth is to attract people to Him and away from sin.

Talent Brings Joy

It is delightful to watch a maestro lead an orchestra. It is an amazing feeling to hear the best voices in sync at the opera. Most people would attest to the fact that observing a person using his gifts to its full capacity brings a sense of joy.

God placed talents in each of us because He intends us to use them. Using your talent does not only bring joy to the observer but also brings joy to you. You would be fulfilled on earth if you’re able to use your talents as God pleases. God tied our talents to our purpose and to our self-actualization.

In Matthew 25:14-30 Jesus tells the parable of the talents. One lesson to take from that passage is that God would cause us to improve upon our talents the more we use it. We see that the master in the aforementioned parable gave more talents to the servants who had made good use of theirs.

However, he took away the talent of the servant who buried it. No matter how little or insignificant we think our talent may be, we need to use it. The more we use our talents, the more we develop the capacity to increase it. Use your talents. That’s what makes you special.

Did You Know God Wants You To Be Rich?

Read More

What If You Could Lead Like God…

Most high school syllabi reveal to students three types of leadership styles. The autocratic, democratic and laissez-faire leadership styles are the most prominent categories of leadership. The autocratic style is dictatorial, democratic leadership gives the decision making power directly to its people or indirectly through representatives. The laissez-faire leadership is hands-off with occasional checks from the leader. Which type of these does God subscribe to? In order to make an informed judgment on what God’s type of leadership may be, we would analyze biblical texts that embody God’s leadership.Read More

During Trials, Keep Your Eyes On The Prize

It is easy to think that just because we are Christians who regularly attend church services and live morally upright lives, we aren’t supposed to go through trials. The truth, however, is that trials and challenging times are part of life and God does not promise that we would not go through them. We can rest assured that in as much as our current situations may be hard to cope in, God has given us the strength, will, and courage to fight through them. God is with us in all our endeavors therefore be encouraged today. I would share with you a few things that are sure to encourage you in perilous times.

You Have A Comforter

Joh 14:16 KJV And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever

The very idea of having a comforter suggests the likelihood of encountering situations that are likely to fight your faith, make you uncomfortable and unhappy. In times where your life may seem to be in its darkest moments always keep in mind that there someone who would comfort you when you allow Him. That person is the third person of the trinity: “The Holy Spirit”. He is our loving and caring guide through the storms of life. He is not a myth, He truly exists and we would experience inexplicable joy in our most perilous times when he is near.

Trials Are For Promotion

Mat 13:21 BBE But having no root in himself, he goes on for a time; and when trouble comes or pain, BECAUSE OF THE WORD he quickly becomes full of doubts.

Sometimes God allows us to face challenges in life because He wants to test us for an imminent promotion. In Matthew 13:21, you can notice that trials come to us because of the word of God have heard. This is comparable to how a teacher would organise am exam for his students based on what has been taught. You could be in a situation where your ability to forgive is being tested because you have been reading books and Bible texts about forgiveness lately and He wants you to perfect that ability. Just as a school exam is meant to promote you to the next academic level, trials are spiritual exams that would develop in you a virtue.

Trials End In Hope

Rom 5:3-4 KJV And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience, experience; and experience, hope:

We’re built up in patience and perseverance the more we go through adversity. A bodybuilder goes to the gym and puts his body through excruciating pain in order to build stamina and endurance. The more he is exposed to pain, the more his body and mind are able to adapt to the discomfort. In time, the bodybuilder would build immunity and numbness for certain kinds of pain. This is similar to what tribulations do to us. They build in us experience and patience that only leads us to hope. What kind of hope?

Hope In Our Rewards

2Co 4:17 KJV For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;

In our darkest moments, we need to remember that what we go through is temporal; it won’t last forever. Afflictions are easier to go through when your eye is on the prize. As Christians, we need to understand that the earth and everything in it, would come to an end one day. When our hope is based on the treasure that awaits us in eternity, we would realize that what we’re facing is nothing.

Sportsmen partake in rigorous training exercises with their end goal being the trophy on the line. This helps them focus on the greater goal instead of being discouraged by whatever discomfort their training brings. We ought to focus on our eternal treasure in order to fight and win the good fight of faith.

Trials and tribulations are a part of life. What sets us apart as Christians is that we walk out of them victoriously. Believe that you have a God who would never forsake you. He has equipped you to succeed even in the toughest times.

What To Expect When Churches Re-open?

One of the most affected sectors, by the COVID-19 pandemic, is religious institutions and faith-based organizations.

Recently, governments of some nations have permitted churches to hold services under certain proposed guidelines and restrictions. However, many questions have been asked with regard to safety and the essentiality of religious gatherings.

The question of essentiality

In troubling times such as this, people need to listen to messages of hope, faith, and the love of God. For Christians, the church is much more than just a social club or an optional meeting.

A Christian’s fellowship with other believers is central to his/her spiritual, physical, and psychological well-being. These are times where believers need to come together to pray for their communities and nations.

The “God-factor” cannot be relegated to the background in a time where it is needed the most. The face of God needs to be sought and that is the responsibility of the entire church.

The online alternative

The church is an essential service for Christians due to the element of hope it provides. So why not hold church services online as an effective alternative to physical meetings? After all, the messages preached wouldn’t lose their potency just because congregants aren’t physically present would they?

While we do not think that there is much difference between listening to a sermon online and listening to it in person, the issue of affordability is paramount here. It is common knowledge that global economic failure is a repercussion of the ongoing fight against the pandemic. Many individuals have lost their jobs because they can no longer be paid by the companies for which they work. Christians; especially those in less endowed countries would struggle to stream online church services due to a deficiency in financial strength.

Some people can afford streaming online services but what happens to those who cannot? The opening of churches would be advantageous to those who may be less privileged financially and wouldn’t afford patronizing online church services. Such people would lose their weekly ‘dose’ of hope if churches are not opened in a way that would make attendance safe.

The question of safety

Many people’s concern now would be whether the church services would be safe enough to attend. The issue of safety is of course a valid concern and the appropriate measures ought to be taken by churches when they open in order to ensure that outbreaks do not occur. In as much as it is normal for individuals to be concerned about safety, a certain level of consistency needs to be present in our line of reasoning.

There are a lot of examples of public gatherings regarded as essential which have a similar risk factor to that of church gatherings. What makes the difference for these gatherings is the observance of precautions and protocols to which the church can also adhere to. Parliamentary sittings, media press briefings, vetting of prospective vetting officials, the operation of cinemas, etc.

Are also social gatherings in an enclosed space just like most churches. Aside from the operation of cinema’s all the stated examples also involve a chairperson addressing a crowd just like the Pastor addresses his/her congregation. If some secular gatherings with some similarities to the church are allowed to operate provided the needed protocols are observed, the church can also do the same.

Should you fear?

NO! Every individual is required to be cautious and take the necessary precautions but fear should not be our disposition. Should churches start opening their doors to members, we are all responsible for being one another’s keeper. All individuals must ensure that everyone else involved in church activities stick to the rules and guidelines the government has proposed for church services.

Ensure that the church has sanitizers at vantage points, masks are worn, the one-meter rule for social distancing is observed by leaders and members of the church.

To Conclude…

These are not normal times but we need normalcy to be restored in the shortest possible time. We can do this together by ensuring that we stick to the protocols as individuals and ensuring that others do so too. If we’re all disciplined enough we can fight COVID-19 together and come out victorious. It isn’t about whether social gatherings are allowed or not. It is more about our will to do our part as individuals.

What selfless love really looks like…

Love as an abstract concept is hard to define in words because of its subjective nature in  language. Love per human intelligence, wisdom and emotion can be defined differently by people depending on culture, personal preferences and context. Granted that cultural and sociological elements influence our categorization of certain acts as being actions of love or not, the bible outlines certain essential properties that objectively constitute love.

Love is patient, love is kind, it is not envious. Love does not brag, it is not puffed up.  1 CORINTHIANS 13:4-7

1 Corinthians 13 is a famous chapter centred on love. As seen above it enlists the virtues of patience, kindness, longsuffering etc. The next few paragraphs would be dedicated to explaining in some detail, what some of these virtues that characterize selfless love according to the bible.

Patience And Tolerance

We would not need to be patient with one another if we were all the same. If we had the same values, ideas and communication skills we wouldn’t need to have patience with and tolerate one another. Selfless love understands that we’re all different people with different perspectives. Love looks beyond oneself and considers other people. In order for us to exhibit true love we need to have an understanding that our differences in perspective may cause frictions and disagreements and that it is normal for people to have views and opinions that do not necessarily align with ours. The Christian life is supposed to exemplify genuine patience and tolerance.

For instance the fact that people of other Faiths or religions have a different perspective from us doesn’t preclude us from peacefully coexisting with them in our communities, schools and workplaces. No matter a person’s race, ethnicity, beliefs etc. God asks us to love them. “…Love your neighbour as yourself.”(Matthew 22:39). Our neighbours may not always be in agreement with us, but it takes tolerance and patience to be able to show the selfless and unshackled love.

Humility And Meekness

Love, humility and meekness are inseparable virtues. It is impossible to exhibit love without being meek and having a spirit of humility. Meekness and humility should not be mistaken for timidity. One can be assertive, proactive and still have be meek and humble. A humble person does not brag on his achievements, he is rather magnanimous in victory. No matter the heights you may have reached in life, you need to be able to relate with people who for one reason or the other are less privileged or successful than you are.

Your success as a humble person helps build others up instead of intimidating and tearing them down. “…knowledge puffeth up but love edifieth.”(1 Corinthians 8:1). Usually the privileges, knowledge and information we have over another may reveal some characteristics of pride in us but it takes the spirit of humility to produce the love in us that edifies others.

Forgiveness

Eph 4:32 KJV And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.

Selfless love forgives. You cannot claim to love a person if you cannot look past that person’s offences or wrongs he/she has committed towards you. We all make mistakes from time to time but perfect love overlooks our errors, forgives and forgets about them as though they never happened. True love does not keep record of our wrong doing. God continues to show us love everyday by forgiving us of all our sins against Him. In order to love those we claim to care about, we need to follow God’s example of dying for a word in its depravity.

Laying Your Life

Joh 15:13 KJV Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

The greatest showcase of love is to lay down your life for another. Every human being has intrinsic value and that is what drives us to seek self preservation. All rational humans are naturally inclined to seek their best interests and death is not one of them. It takes the highest level of love for one to deny himself of his right to life just to ensure that another’s life is preserved.

What does our love look like? Does it have any of the discussed characteristics? In order to be able to exhibit true selfless love, we ought to have the Spirit of God because God is love. Therefore it only makes sense that the perfect representation of love which is our Lord Jesus Christ laying His life down for our sins would be believed in. Having Jesus in our heart is the first and inevitable step to take in order to portray selfless love.

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