If you plant in love, you will reap love because there is no giving in truth without receiving. What do you have? We are expected to give to God everything He has given us – I mean, all our substance – our time, strength, loyalty, money and every good thing the Lord has given us – and we shall receive, in return, an abundant blessing. Let us not love in words alone but also in deed and truth. When we love in deed, we are planting seeds that would return unto us a harvest of whatever love we expressed. God expects our best because He gives us His best (John 3:16). God has a Son. He planted Him in the earth to produce a family. Today, millions are born again through this Seed.
When we give, it makes us like unto God, who gives to all and receives from none. We should know that whatever blessing God has given us is meant to be replanted for a bigger harvest. We always reap the same kind of seed we plant, just as we always reap more than we plant:
Love for God’s sake and be loved.
Help for God’s sake and be helped.
Be kind for God’s sake and receive kindness.
Show mercy for God’s sake and receive mercy.
Give and receive more of whatever you give.
Sow and reap more of whatever you plant.
Job did not despair at his situation because though it looked like a misfortune, yet it was not. As Christians, our situation may look, may seem painful, yet it is not, because it is not unto death but to the glory of God. The situation you are facing may be to save your life or to prevent you from certain mishaps. It could be an accident or an implication – for example, a case of an innocent man who was caught in the company of his robber friends and was eventually executed. If a pain in the head had kept him back at home on that fateful day, little would he have known that the pain was to preserve him from being implicated.
Let me tell you a short story about my life. When I was younger, I was busy licking my thumb. My parents did everything to stop me from sucking my thumb without success – because the sucking of my thumb had already become my second nature. This kept me to myself. My thumb was my only friend, no one else was. Because of this, I was isolated by my mates. It was this isolation that preserved me for what I am today. This means, isolation can also preserve one. Apostle Paul said, ‘I am content with weakness for Christ’s sake’. Why should anyone be content with weakness for Christ’s sake? This is because His strength is made manifest in our weakness.
A good example of this is David’s encounter with Goliath. The weakness of David made manifest the strength of God. The weakness of David was what demonstrated the strength of God. If David had matched up strength to strength, weapon to weapon, stature to stature with Goliath, the glory of God would not be made manifest in his defeat of Goliath. In our weakness, the strength of God is made manifest. When we are weak, it is then that the strength of the hand that is protecting us would be made manifest in our victory.
We are all connected to one another in a way too fundamental to be explained away in a single sentence:
The mouth needs words,
The ears need sounds,
The eyes need a view,
The feet need to go places.
Though the body of man is composed of many members, its workings are informed and influenced by one concern, in the spirit of one purpose. In other words, we need one another for our wholeness and completeness. I am not complete without you, neither are you without me. In essence, we depend on others to succeed in our respective callings. No one can succeed alone. Jesus knew this; that was why He had disciples.
We need good, inspired and informed people to make it in our respective callings. The medical doctor cannot say he does not need the soldier. What of when external forces invade the community? The soldier cannot say he does not need the medical doctor. What of when he is wounded in battle?
I am because you are, just as you are because I am. I mean you depend on me; I depend on you. The whole creation of the universe is based on this symbiotic essence. Just as the way God has designed the workings of the human society, so He has planned the way the different individuals can contribute to the well-being of their fellow brothers.
“If you make an excuse for sin, your sin will not be excused. What is an excuse? An excuse is a reason whether genuine or fake, given to explain or defend your wrongdoing. Today, we blame our situation on others. Man always shifts his blame to someone else or to circumstances beyond his control. Many blame their situation on family background. Some would say, “I am poor because everyone in my family is poor”. If you make an excuse for being poor, your poverty cannot be excused.
“Remember, you are responsible for what you give your attention to, so it is unnecessary to blame your situation on anyone. In the same way, you are responsible for your own actions. Today, it is common for people to blame their failures on their family background whereas they attribute their success to their personal effort. If you attribute your success to your personal effort, you should also accept the blame for your failure. If you complain that you are poor because every member of your family is poor, remember, you are responsible for your poverty by your own actions or inactions, that is, by what you do or what you fail to do.
“For example, I found myself in a family background that irritated me in those early years of my life. I knew I would be blamed for what I gave my attention to. I knew I could change the situation, so I took a different direction in order to achieve a different solution by recognising that victory obtained through Christ was a past tense victory. I mean, it is victory assured. Rather than despair and blame my situation on family background, I began to be proud of my situation in order to feel Christ’s victory over me. I became content with my situation, knowing that my situation was redeemable through Christ and that, that redemption was a past tense redemption. I mean, redemption assured. Then I began to take God at His Word in order to have His way.
“Remember, no one is too good or too bad to qualify for His grace. Remember also that it was possible for me to have sat somewhere and begin to make excuses for my situation but I never did. Whatever I am today is a product of the conviction that victory through Christ is victory indeed. The rest is history.”
– Prophet T.B. Joshua
Mention any great Biblical character and you would see how much pain he had to endure to come to a new level in life. It is the principle of life that for everything, there is a purpose. I mean, nothing happens for nothing. Unless you understand this principle, you are bound to despair or murmur when things seem to go contrary to your expectation.
If Hannah had been impatient over her inability to bear a child as expected, she would have sought other shortcuts to achieve her desire and history would have been changed. Today, many have changed the history of their lives through their inability to see beyond their immediate situation.
Those who see beyond their immediate situations do not despair in the face of seeming disappointment. Have you received a sack letter? Remember, many successful men today once had the same experience and were moved to a higher level in life thereby. Is it lateness in marriage or a delay in bearing a child? Is it inability to get a job in spite of your efforts and qualifications? Is it poverty in spite of your hard work and goodwill? Think well, as a Christian and you would see the purpose of God in your situation. I mean, behind your situation lies God’s promises for your life.
Our failure to give Christ His proper place in our heart is actually responsible for the crises of our faith. The management of our heart and its thoughts is important, necessary and fundamental to our faith and holy living (Proverbs 4:23, Corinthians 3:1-2). If we give Christ His proper place in our heart, our confession would be guided by faith. We give Christ His proper place when our heart is disciplined to concentrate upon things in the Spirit. Christ has risen; therefore, let your heart also rise and seek the things that are above so that you may be comforted in your current circumstance.
What are you going through? Is it poverty? Let your heart rise and seek the things that are above. Is it sickness? Let your heart rise and seek the things that are above. Is it disappointment? Let your heart rise and seek the things that are above so that you may be comforted. When our confession comes from faith, our words become prophetic! David’s confession concerning the outcome of the battle turned out to be prophetic (1 Samuel 17:46). All what David said came to pass. The course of the battle went in the footprints of his confession. His confession gave him possession.
Faith is not a product of the reasoning faculties but of the recreated spirit. A believer does not have strength as long as he operates in the natural. There is more to life than meets the ordinary eyes. When we base our judgment on sense knowledge, we have not looked deep enough.
None of us is any match for satan as long as we stay in the natural. The more we would get into the natural, the more satan rises up and becomes bigger. On the contrary, the more we would get into faith, the more satan becomes smaller. Unless you decide to look at things from God’s point of view, you will be constantly defeated and overcome by satan.
There are two sides to life. First is the spiritual side and ultimate conclusion, where satan was defeated. Second is the natural side, in which people try to figure God out with their natural mind. Focusing on God puts everything else in its proper perspective!
Too often, we think that the primary requirement for serving God is the gift of spoken language, great talent, high qualifications or impressive academic credentials. Peter and the other disciples were ordinary fishermen from a backward and lowly part of the country. They were nobodies till Jesus called them.
This means there is hope for you – whether you are educated or not, whether you are a farmer or a professor. Stop talking about your limited education! Stop complaining that everyone in the family is poor! Stop repeating stories of those who failed you! Stop pointing your finger at the economy! Stop meditating on your flaws or weaknesses – and start loving Jesus. If you hope to accomplish anything good in the future, it will only be because of your love for Jesus. The main requirement for making a difference for Jesus is being in love with Him.
You were once a tiny embryo in your mother’s womb. See what you have become today. If something big starts big, it calls for concern because everything big starts little. This teaches us to encourage little beginnings. If one’s faith must grow, it has to start in a weak form.
We are in a danger zone where everyone lies to his neighbour (Psalm 12:2). This is the kind of situation we find ourselves in the world today. This means that everything you hear or see must be examined in the light of God’s Word. What do I mean by examining things in the light of God’s Word? I mean, whatever you hear, always ask, ‘What does God – I mean, the Word of God say about the situation?’
Romans 14:23 – “…everything that does not come from faith is sin.” What are the things that do not come from faith?
– Whatever we hear that is not examined in the light of God’s Word does not come from faith.
– Whatever we see that is not examined in the light of God’s Word does not come from faith.
-Whatever we read that is not examined in the light of God’s Word does not come from faith.
Therefore, whatever you hear, whatever you see and whatever you read should be examined in the light of God’s Word!
Today, our hearts are so occupied by worldly considerations that we are impatient to recognise the fact that there is an appointed time for everything. Assuming Jesus had been impatient when his brothers urged Him to show off in public before the appointed time, He may have been killed by His enemies who were looking for Him at all costs (John 7:3-8). The same thing happens to us today. When we are impatient, we tend to disregard the fact that there is a time for everything.
We all know that when it is time to start a race, everybody waits for the blast of the gun or the sound of the whistle – but in our daily lives, the opposite is the case. We try to move the hands of the clock forward by hook and crook. In order to beat the gun, we are prepared to steal, kill and destroy. If any person beats the gun, that person would be called back to begin afresh, while others are still waiting patiently for the sound of the gun. This is what we mean by the saying, “More haste, less speed”, meaning that if you are in a haste to achieve something, you are likely to make costly mistakes that would pull you back, if not down. In an attempt to beat God’s appointed time, we get ourselves entangled with conditions we are likely unable to meet, thus jeopardising our career and the promises of God in our lives. Therefore, wait patiently for the Lord because at God’s time, everything is beautiful.
Sit and reflect on life itself and you would discover that nothing happens by chance. It is the principle of life that for everything there is a purpose. Our God is God of purpose. There is a purpose for everything He created. Who knows what would have happened if there was day and no night at all. Who knows what would have happened if there were only women and no men at all. For everything God created, He assigned a definite purpose – a clear role. Remember, you are made not only in the image of God but also to live in a community. Without relating to others in a community, the reality of the image of God in us cannot be made manifest. Genuine spiritual experience needs to be tested in a real situation in order to expose the reality of the experience. By genuine spiritual experience, I mean the image of God in us which we manifest in the form of faithfulness, love, kindness, goodness, self-control, humility and the like as mentioned in Galatians 5:22-23. If you say you are Christian, you are saying you are a divine image bearer of God. It means you mirror Christ and that your life comes from Christ. Except this claim is tested in a real situation, your claim would remain suspect.
As a Christian, no matter the situation you are facing, there is a purpose. Find out. Do a proper reflection and you would see that behind your situation lies God’s purpose for your life.
-TB Joshua Ministries
If you read the about the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:30-36, you would realise that Jesus Christ has actually called us as Christians to respond to all human needs, for that is what love entails.
Jesus Christ values our little effort to honour Him when it is done in truth, humility and faith. No matter how small, how little, when you present it in humility, cheerfulness, Jesus honours it. Look at your contribution to others as an assignment from God. When you see whatever you are doing as an assignment from God, you cannot afford to fail God. You will always do the right thing. The Bible says that whatever you do to your neighbour or fail to do, that you do unto God. Every person God created is a solution to a problem. No matter your level in life, you are a solution to a problem. When you begin to see life in this light, you will always overcome, you will become successful.
Jesus Christ was bread to the hungry, a roadmap to the lost, water to the thirsty, a companion to the lonely. Whatever is your gift, that is what the Lord will use to bless others through you. What is your gift? No matter how small, you can still share with others who need your gift. Thousands want to change. They just don’t know how to go about it. Successful people are simply problem solvers. No matter your level in life, you are a solution to a problem. This means you are created for a purpose.
PRAYER: God, give me Your eyes to find those who need me and how I can identify with those who need me the most, in Jesus’ name.
“For you to be suitable, you need to be melted, remoulded and filled. Then you would be suitable to be used by the Holy Spirit. When we say, “Use me Lord”, we mean, “melt me, remould me, fill me”. When we say that we want every purpose of God in our lives to be fulfilled, there is a process. Remember that the stage you are now may not be suitable for God’s purpose; you need to be melted, remoulded and filled before you can be suitable for God’s purpose.
“We have those that are yet in their raw state, I mean the process of being melted has not even started. There are others who are undergoing the process of being melted. There are others who have been melted already and are being remoulded. There are others that are already melted and remoulded, but are in the process of being filled. When God moulded man in the beginning, man did not become man until he was filled (Genesis 2:7). Which stage are you in now?
“Remember, if you are melted, you need to be remoulded and if you are remoulded, you need to be filled before you can be suitable for God’s purpose in your life.”
– T.B. Joshua
“What we do for Christ is only a reflection of the relationship we have with God. If you want to be able to do great things, you need to have a great relationship. The greater the relationship, the greater the things we can do for God. It is my relationship with Him that brings about what I am doing for Him. It is your relationship with Him that brings about what you are doing for Him.
“If you want to have a ministry that is strong, our relationship must be strong. Life does not begin with a relationship with people. It begins with a relationship with God and that relationship overflows to people. I mean, our relationship should be first to God, and then to human beings. The main thing about Christianity is not the work we do but the relationship we maintain and the atmosphere produced by that relationship.”
– T.B. Joshua
“Let us look for peace – peace of heart – and the little you have will be sufficient. Without peace of heart, even if you have the whole, you have trouble. The only thing that will give you peace of heart is to consider your neighbour while looking for your own way out. If you don’t consider your neighbour while looking for the way out of your problem, you are not considering Jesus, your Creator.
“Remember, your neighbour can be someone who does not share the same faith with you; your neighbour can be your friend or enemy. While looking for the way out of your mess, difficulty, situation – how will I do this business – consider your neighbour. What is happening to your neighbour? If that neighbour is entitled to the same business but you are ready to do anything to take it, you may take it – but without peace of heart.” – T.B. Joshua