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.
Engineer Odang Solomon had been suffering for many years with the problem of degenerative neck disease since 10 years ago, when he fell from a tree. For the civil engineer, the back and neck problems due to the problem became so severe that his career was affected; he could not stand for long periods of time – a major requirement of his job. He went to several doctors, who advised him not to lift any heavy object or even carry his children. Despite several medications, the sickness worsened and he could not lift his shoulders and his feet would go numb all of a sudden, making it impossible for him to walk. This issue got to a point where he fell into depression and thought of taking his own life. However, he discovered Emmanuel TV and saw people receive healing from similar conditions. During his visit to The SCOAN, he received prayers in the mighty name of Jesus Christ. Solomon confirmed that after that prayer, he felt a surge of coldness come over him and he felt freedom at last. Today, he testified that he can now do those things he could not do before and is now free to return to his career. He advised all and sundry to trust in the Lord and seek His face so that Jesus Christ’s mercy would locate them.
Pastor Samson Nyangu, from Zambia, testified today of the goodness of the Lord in his life. For years, he had suffered from a terrible liver problem that was severely affecting his ministry; he could hardly go out to minister or pray for people as much as he would have liked to. Determined to surmount this obstacle to his health and ministry, Pastor Nyangu found his way to The Arena of Liberty last week and received a divine touch during the Mass Prayer. As Prophet TB Joshua declared healing and deliverance upon the congregation, Pastor Nyangu felt a sharp prick in his stomach – and he began to vomit poisonous meat-like substances. Since last Sunday, he said, no longer does he feel any pain in his stomach. Addressing pastors specifically, he advised people to humble themselves before God and His anointed servants.
Rebecca Ayodeji Akeresola came to The SCOAN to thank God for the completion of her studies at the University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria. Rebecca never did anything without her best friend, the New Morning Water, which she always ministered on her examination papers before submitting them. During her national youth service, Rebecca applied for a fully funded scholarship as many others students did. Through her prayer with the Morning Water, she secured admission on a fully funded scholarship at the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences, Rwanda, where she will be resuming next week. Appreciating what God has done in her life, Rebecca advised all youths not to doubt God: “Never doubt God’s desire and ability to help you. Be careful of those who can negatively influence your life.” Her mother, Mrs Akeresola Oluwasola said: “It can only be God who has chosen her among the multitude of people.”
It was a family stigma that had caused much embarrassment for Mrs Jenette Yula from Canada. The problem of bedwetting had hindered her social life. She would excuse herself early when visiting friends, not wanting to stay over and disgrace herself by wetting their beds. Her matrimonial home was also affected as her husband would go to another room, leaving her to sleep in the bedroom alone.
The evil spirit behind her bedwetting sat on her success as even getting a job was a battle – rejection became the norm. However, last Sunday at The SCOAN, Mrs Jenette Yula together with her children and mother who had suffered the same fate all received their deliverance from bedwetting! She testified that for the first time when she slept and woke up, she found that the bed was dry. The giant man that she would normally see in her dreams also took to its heels and the bad dreams of seeing herself urinating in the restroom is a thing of the past. “I am free! Me and my family, we are free!” Her mother also testified that she was also among those whom the generational curse had affected as well as Jenette’s children who testified to the experience of waking up to dry sheets – no more bedwetting. To God be all the glory!