SUNRISE AUTUMN 2013 £2.50 Where Sold
The Magazine of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, United Kingdom
GLADNESS 7 PILLARS OF
WISDOM SUCCESS WITH THE
HOW TO BREAK FREE FROM PROCRASTINATION
I N S PI RAT I ON | Y O UT H
| F IN AN C E
| RE LAT I ON S HIP S
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FROM THE GENERAL OVERSEER FROM THE CENTRAL OFFICE EDITORIAL NOTE FRESH OIL A FEAST FIT FOR QUEENS – CELEBRATING THE FEAST OF ESTHER COMMUNITY HOPE: STRONGER TOGETHER DEVELOPING NEXT LEVEL LEADERSBREAKFAST WITH DR. MYLES MUNROE RCCG CHURCH WINS QUEEN’S GOLDEN JUBILEE AWARD MISSIONS FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION THE PILGRIM RELATIONSHIPS BURNTOUT AND ITS EFFECT ON YOUR RELATIONSHIPS FEATURES 7 PILLARS OF WISDOM SUCCESS WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT IGNITE YOUR PASSION WANT TO BE SUCCESSFUL? WOMEN AS CHANGE AGENTS PARENTING MAKING PARENTING AN ACT OF HONOUR TO GOD THE JOURNEY PSYCHOLOGY HOW TO BREAK FREE FROM PROCRASTINATION MATTERS OF THE HEART A CONSTANT GOD
51 THINK ON THESE THINGS RCCG EVENTS 42 PASTOR ADEBOYE WORSHIPS WITH WELWYN AND HATFIELD CHURCHES 43 RCCG SPORTS DAY 2013 44 RCCG WORKERS’ RALLY APRIL 2013 43 FESTIVAL OF LIFE, LONDONAPRIL 2013 46 FESTIVAL OF LIFE MANCHESTER JULY 2013 47 SUNDAY SCHOOL CONFERENCE 2013 48 GOOD WOMEN CONFERENCE 49 RCCG EVENTS CALENDAR 51 A – Z OF RCCG UNREACHED AREAS IN THE UK 52 OLUGBENGA OGUNBODE EDUCATIONENTREPRENEUR 53 JUST BEFORE YOU SAY “I DO” 54 SCIENCE THOMAS EDISON: STORY OF PREVAILING PERSEVERANCE THAT PAID OFF 56 BOOKS YOU JUST MUST READ... 57 ART FOR EVERYONE 58 SINGLES CONFUSED? 60 SOUL SURVIVOR 62 STYLE MY HAIRITAGE: HAIR DAMAGE 63 ISTYLE MYSTYLE & USTYLE URSTYLE: BLAZERS 64 MUSIC FAITH CHILD 66 LEGAL IMMIGRATION LAW
SUNRISE Magazine ISSN NO: 2042-6542 EDITORIAL BOARD Editor-in-Chief: MODUPE AFOLABI, Managing Editor: YINKA ODUWOLE, Editor: ANDREA ONDUKU Contributors: SINDILE MOYO, AKINWALE AKINYEMI, KOFI OWUSU, HAPPINESS OLAYEMI ONASANYA, MOBAYODE AKINSOLU, BUKKY FATOKUN, VICTOR UWAEZU, PREYE OMBU Columnists: ARE: JOSEPH AMAEZE ONWUCHEKWA, DR. AKPO ONDUKU, BRYCE EDEM, ABI ADEYANJU, WALE OLADIPO, IDORENYIN ENO, OLANIKE ADEBAYO Photography (RCCG Events): KUSH Contributory Photographer FEMI ONATUGA Designed by: XANDY DAEHNHARDT Printed by: WWW.CHURCH-PRINT.CO.UK Published by: The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), United Kingdom. facebook.com/rccguk twitter.com/rccguk youtube.com/rccguk All communications to: Sunrise Magazine, RCCG Central Office, Redemption House, Station Road, Knebworth, SG3 6AT. Disclaimer: The publishers, editors, contributors and related parties are not responsible in any way for the actions or results taken any person, organisation or any party on basis of reading information, stories or contributions in this publication. Tel: + 44 (0) 208 171 1030 Email: email@example.com. Web: www.sunrisemagazine.org
FROM THE GENERAL OVERSEER
Pastor E.A Adeboye
ebrews 1: 9 says “Thou has loved righteousness and hated iniquity therefore God even thy God has anointed thee with the Oil of gladness above thy fellows”. I believe God that sorrow will become a stranger to somebody in Jesus Name. Why is God so particular about Holiness? 1. He is a Holy God. There were no problems for us until sin came and he doesn’t want us to have problems. 2. Hebrews 12:14 says ‘without Holiness it is impossible for us to see God’ and God wants us to see Him. 3. It is Holy people who have boldness. Holy people have strong faith, Proverbs 28:1 says ‘The wicked flee when no man pursueth but the righteous is as bold as a lion”. If you are Holy you will become bold in your faith. 4. Being holy as God means you will be able to have the faith of God. Then you can move any mountain and surely become more than a conqueror. 5. So that you can walk in anointing. One of the most prominent blessings of holiness is anointing.
We know the products of anointing: · Anointing destroys yokes Isaiah 10: 27 says “The yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing’. You cannot bind an anointed man, if you bind him, anointing will destroy the yokes. · Anointing gives you security, it gives you protection from enemies known and unknown. Psalm 105: 14-15 says “Touch not my anointed and do my prophets no harm”. Anointing tells your enemy to stay away from this one. That is why David was able to say in Psalm 23 that “thou prepares a table before me in the presence of my enemies because thou anointest my head with oil”. · Anointing also produces joy and gladness. Psalms 16:4 tells us that the sorrows of those who go after other gods shall be multiplied but in Isaiah 51:11 we are told that the Redeemed of the lord shall return with singing and everlasting joy shall be upon their head. In other words while the sorrow of sinners keeps on multiplying; the joy of the anointed will keep on multiplying. I decree to someone reading this that you will not know sorrow again. I will take a case study of someone who was holy and therefore was anointed. That fellow is Elijah. What is the secret of Elijah? He was a holy man. His obedience was total obedience. He is what I can call God’s own yes- man. Whatever God says – yes. Go to the palace – yes Lord. Go to the brook of Cherith alone – yes Lord. Go to the house of the Widow – yes Lord. Go and show yourself to Ahab – yes Lord. What was the beginning of sin? Adam and Eve were told not to eat certain fruit but they disobeyed. That’s how sin came. What is sin today? God says sit down and you want to stand, He asks you to pray and you want to sleep. He asks you to fast and you want to eat. He asks you to tithe and you ask who said so. He askes you to give your offering cheerfully but you give it grudgingly. He says that whenever you want to praise him you should shout but you have to be prompted before you can shout Hallelujah. Holiness is total obedience and from the moment I discovered that, my life became easy: Sit down, yes Lord. Don’t eat today, yes Lord. Pray throughout tonight, yes Lord. You must read 3 chapters of the bible before you sleep tonight, yes Lord What are the blessings in the life of Elijah? · According to 2 Kings1: 9-15, as a result of the anointing that came on him as a result of his holiness, he became untouchable by his enemies. Those who tried to touch him were burnt up and the remainder bowed. · According to 1 kings 18:46 he had unusual strength. He could run faster than horses and he was never sick. Not once! · All his needs were supernaturally met as demonstrated in 1 kings 17: 2-16 and 19:4-8. At first birds were bringing food to him and later a widow supplied his food supernaturally. On another occasion, an angel brought the food directly from
heaven to him. All his needs were miraculously met, anything he needed came supernaturally. According to 1 Kings 18:36-38 his prayers were answered by fire. Do you know the prayer he prayed on Mount Carmel was less than 2 minutes and fire fell? His word was a decree. Anytime he spoke, it was a decree. We can see this in 1 Kings 17:1 ‘As the Lord God of Israel liveth before whom I stand, there will be no rain, no dew until I call for it’. He had the ability to hear God. That is a beautiful thing. You can see in 1 Kings 17:2, ‘the word of the Lord came to Elijah saying…’ and in 1 Kings 18:1,’ ‘the word of the Lord came to Elijah saying… ‘It is a beautiful thing to hear God. You don’t have to be a prophet to hear from God. You only need to be obedient to hear God speak from time to time. He never saw death. He went in a rapture 2 Kings 2:9-12. He rode in the special chariot of God to heaven. Holiness prepares you for the rapture. It prepares you for heaven. God says because you are holy, because you love what God loves and you hate what God hates He has anointed you with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. So those of us who have made up our minds that we want to live holy from now, we can expect the oil of gladness, we can expect that anointing that makes us untouchable to the enemy, that will make sure our needs are supernaturally met, that will keep sickness far away from us, that will enable us to hear from God, that our words will become decrees, that our prayers will be answered by fire, that whenever the Lord comes, we will be able to go with Him.
Maybe you are reading this and you are not yet born again. You have not asked Jesus to be your personal Lord and Saviour and to cleanse you from sin. How can you live holy if you are still in sin? If you come to Jesus, his blood will cleanse you from all sins. All the former sins will be gone and you can cry to him and say sanctify me. It doesn’t matter how many sins you have committed in the past, when you come to him he will wash away all your sins. If you are truly determined to surrender to him, he is ready to save your soul. Pastor E. A. Adeboye (General Overseer of The Redeemed Christian Church of God)
FROM THE CENTRAL OFFICE
The Oil Is To Make You Shine
nyone who has been a Christian for a while will almost certainly know that one of the symbols of the Holy Spirit is oil. What may not have occured to many is why this is so. One answer that can be seen in the Scriptures is this: Oil makes you shine! This truth holds water, whether you apply it in a natural sense or metaphorically. Oil makes one‘s face to shine, physically and spiritually. In a sense, an early clue can be found in this instruction from God to Moses following their deliverance from centuries of bondage and the Exodus from Egypt: “Command the Israelites to bring you clear oil of pressed olives for the light so that the lamps may be kept burning. In the Tent of Meeting, outside the curtain that is in front of the Testimony, Aaron and his sons are to keep the lamps burning before the LORD from evening till morning. This is to be a lasting ordinance among the Israelites for the generations to come.” (Exodus 27:20). There are several lessons that can be gleaned from this divine command on how oil for the Lampstand for the Tabernacle was to be provided and maintained. First, If you want to shine as God’s favourite, you have a role to play. Success in our walk with God is a collaboration between Him and ourselves. The oil for the Lampstand did not miraculously flow from the spiritual realm; it had to be manufactured by the Israelites and brought to the Lord. In order to shine for the Lord, we must first come to him transparently and humbly. It is in Christ that we shine, as the Holy Spirit ignites the potentials we have been blessed created with at creation. You may recall one of the prophecies from God shared by our Father-in-the-Lord the General Overseer Pastor Enoch Adejare Adeboye at the beginning of the year: “He said, ‘No matter the darkness around you, your star will shine brighter. No matter the darkness around you, your star will shine brighter still‘ “. The
oil of God will bring light into every area of your life in Jesus’ name. Second, anyone who desires to shine for the Lord must have a heart to serve. Inevitably, service to God always involves working with His chosen servants for some Kingdom purpose. Connecting with God’s servant(s) to whom one has been divinely assigned is a pathway to walking in the Holy Spirit and shining for the Lord. The children of Israel were instructed to bring the oil to Moses and Aaron who were then directed to keep the lamps burning. Have you found the person to whom you have been assigned in God’s service? To whom do you bring fresh oil in the fulfilment of God’s purposes? Third, you must keep burning ever so brightly for the Lord. Your lamp must never go out. You are the light of the world. This generation is depending on you to lead the way out of the morass and darkness of contemporary life. God instructed Moses and Aaron not to allow the lamps to go out. It was one of the signs of Israel’s covenant relationship with Yahweh. You must make up your mind to remove anything that could stop the flow of your oil and make your fire go out. Are you on fire for the Lord? Keep burning brightly and determine to remain the spark that will bring many to Jesus Christ. Have you become lukewarm in your walk with Him? Make up your mind today to flicker into life once again by His grace. In this season of fresh oil, we encourage you to enjoy your stimulating magazine Sunrise, filled as usual with enlightening information to keep you glowing for the Lord. May you keep shining brighter and brighter until the end. God bless you.
Modupe Afolabi Editor-in-Chief
SEEK OUT THE TRUTH
n the car the other day, my children were discussing the sights. My son (age 6) said to his sister ‘The leaves are still on the trees’. My daughter (age 4) replied ‘That’s because it’s not autumn yet’ and he argued that it was already autumn. Hence began a debate about when autumn officially starts. After some research to settle the debate, I soon discovered that autumn began on Sunday, September 22 and ends on Friday, December 20 when winter begins. This reminded me of how we often need to go back to the Word of God to find out the truth. Appearances can be deceptive and so one must go back to the truth so as not to be deceived. The internet has many sources that are genuine and many that are not, so I needed to find a source I could trust to settle the weather debate. In the same way in the world there are many voices claiming to be speaking
the truth, some are circumstances, others are thoughts and still others are authors and speakers. We need to know that the Bible written by Divine Inspiration is the truth and anything that is contrary to it is false. May we recognise the truth from the counterfeit in Jesus Name. Many of the articles in this edition encourage us to seek out the truth that is in the Word of God. One article tells us that there can be no success without the Holy Spirit who guides us into all truth, another talks of 4 kinds of wisdom that exist and that we should seek after the perfect wisdom of God which none other can measure up to. May we continue to seek out the truth in Jesus Name. We are also encouraged in this edition to be passionate, successful, agents of change and to be next level leaders. There are also several inspirational articles of great things that
God is using people to do in their communities, to be the salt and light that we all are called to be. For those relaxing moments, there are articles about beauty, fashion, science, music, art, poetry, prose and RCCG UK event Photos to browse through. It is really a bumper packed edition and I pray that you will be blessed and impacted as you read in Jesus Name. Happy Reading!! If you wish to be part of the next edition of magazine or you can recommend someone who is doing great or inspirational work in their community, please do get in touch with suggestions and article submissions via firstname.lastname@example.org. God Bless you,
FRESH OIL As Christians, when we think about oil, what comes to mind is anointing. When we talk about fresh oil, what comes to mind is a fresh anointing on a person which is distinct from the original anointing. A fresh anointing enables the anointed person to, either perform their assignment at a different level or to receive a refreshing where they are burnt out.
nointing, for our purposes, is the impartation of authority or power to enable the anointed person to perform a particular task in the service of God. Anointing is absolutely critical in the consecration of a person for service, because it equips that person to fulfil all the requirements of that service. The anointing transfers spiritual power and authority enabling the performance of feats that exceed the person’s natural ability. The anointing is essentially the power and authority of Jesus Christ transmitted via the Holy Spirit to the recipient to aid performance. It is absolutely essential that the person carrying out the assignent is empowered for the task otherwise that person is unlikely to experience any degree of success. When the anointing comes upon a person, the spirit of God is unleashed on that person making them spiritual super heroes. Samson is a classical example. From birth, he had been consecrated to God’s service under the order of Nazarenes and was anointed in his hair to perform extraordinary physical feats. Though this anointing was not imparted via the medium of a priest’s oil, it nevertheless imbued him with immense power enabling him to tear apart a young Lion on one occasion and on another to slay a thousand Philistines with the jawbone of an ass. The anointing empowered him to do the extraordinary. However, because of his compromise with women, one seductress successfully learnt the secret to his strength and sold the information to his enemies, the Philistines, who then blinded him and shaved his hair. This was not the end of the mighty man because his hair began to grow back. With the fresh hair growth, Samson received a fresh anointing to perform one last feat and after calling upon the name of the Lord was able to bring down the Philistines temple killing over three thousand in one arena. A fresh anointing can enable a broken and defeated person fulfill their assignment, even if they’ve lost their eyesight as a result
of past mistakes. Another of the most remarkable characters in the Bible was David. The prophet Samuel was led by God to the house of Jesse in Bethlehem and told to anoint the son whom God chose. The Bible records that Samuel took a horn of oil and anointed David in the midst of his brothers and the Spirit of the Lord came upon him. The anointing, transformed David from a gentle shepherd into a fearless warrior. Under the influence, David killed a lion and a bear, presumably on separate occasions and these feats prepared him psychologically for his confrontation with his biggest mountain up until that time – Goliath. At the end of the battle, Goliath was lying beheaded in the Valley of Elah and David was victorious, successfully removing the reproach from Israel and restoring its honour. However, despite his remarkable exploits and his well documented fondness for worshipping God, in Psalm 92 David records an emphatic statement. After declaring praises to God, David states that the Lord’s enemies shall perish and all workers of iniquity shall be scattered, but concerning himself he says “But my horn shalt thou exalt like the horn of an unicorn: I shall be anointed with fresh oil. (emphasis is mine) Mine eye also shall see my desire on mine enemies and mine ears shall hear my desire of the wicked tht rise up against me.” David may have been referring to King Saul who was searching for him, to kill him having made him a fugitive hiding in caves. Another possibility is that he is referring to the time during his reign that Absalom his favoured son overthrew him and sent him into exile. Whatever the circumstance, what is clear is that David was in need of a fresh anointing because he was getting weary and fatigued in his situation and possibly discouraged. The original anointing he had received was in need of an upgrade and for this purpose he had to go back into the presence of God to receive it. In verses 12 to 14, he emphasises the importance of being planted in the house of the Lord, which is an indication that anyone seeking fresh oil has to go into God’s presence where they will receive a fresh anointing sufficient for them to continue their assignment. Zechariah 4:14 paints a picture of two olive trees, standing either side of a bowl propped-up on a golden candlestick, which liberally dispensed olive oil into the bowl through two golden pipes. The angel in Zachariah’s vision explained that the trees represented the two anointed ones (or “sons of fresh oil”) that stand by the Lord. Doubtless, from the passage we know that Zerubbabel the governor who was charged with undertaking the temple restoration, at the time, was one of the trees. The other, was most likely Joshua the High Priest who was partnering with him in the project. Zerubbabel and Joshua were both anointed exceedingly to achieve their objective within their community. Why are they referred to as sons of fresh oil? Because they had received a fresh anointing to carry out the task of temple restoration. The oil dripping from them into the bowl was a measure of the level of anointing upon them.
It is from this passage in Zechariah that we get the memorable declaration from God to Zerubbabel via prophet Zechariah “Not by might nor by power, but by my spirit says the Lord of hosts. Who art thou, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel thou shalt become a plain….” The mountain Zerubbabel was facing was the temple reconstruction. In the book of Haggai, Zerubbabel and Joshua had received an anointing to rebuild the temple (see Haggai 1:12-14). Both men had grown weary with their task and burnt out from attempting to execute the task with their own might. Recognising their situation, God bestowed a fresh anointing on both men to enable them overcome their mountain. In the book of Numbers (verse 11:8), Moses describes the manna which God provided as food for the children of Israel as tasting like fresh oil. during their time in the wilderness, God provided the children of Israel with manna on a daily basis for six days of the week and it was a fresh supply every morning. The manna has been called angels’ food (see Psalm 78:24-25) presumably because it was delivered to them by angels on a daily basis. As we know, everything in the Old Testament is a type and shadow of something in the New Testament or as someone put it: “The Old Testatment is the New Testament Concealed whilst the New Testament is the Old Testament revealed.” Manna is a type of God’s word delivered to us on a daily basis when we seek Him. The fact that manna is described as tasting like fresh oil is an indication that what God desires for us is fresh anointing on a daily basis. God knows that yesterday’s anointing will not suffice for today, we need new strategies and fresh energy to confront challenges. To receive fresh anointing we need to be actively seeking God and daily spending time in His presence. As Hebrews 11:6 reminds us, God is a rewarder of them that dilligently seek Him and for the persistent, they will surely receive a fresh anointing if that is their desire. One would almost imagine that the original anointing would suffice for the duration of our race, but God has made it such that the original anointing requires periodic refreshing to ensure that we do not get complacent in our relationship with Him. The Christian who does not think that he or she requires a fresh anointing is playing a risky game, because our adversary is prowling around like a roaring lion seeking whom to devour. Who does the adversary devour? Answer - those who do not believe in the necessity of abiding daily in God’s presence. In the preceding chapter of Psalms (Psalm 91) David starts off by saying that “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.” The secret place of the Most High, is His word. The Word of God is that secret place of refuge that a Christian must daily dwell in if that person wishes to receive a fresh anointing. There may not be any physical transfer of oil, but there will be an impartation from the Holy Spirit to the diligent Christian and that will make it worthwhile. BY JOSEPH AMAEZE ONWUCHEKWA
Pastor (Mrs) Folu Adeboye ministering
A FEAST FIT FOR QUEENS Celebrating the Feast of Esther
Pastor (Mrs) Folu Adeboye with the Feast UK working team
Pastor (Mrs) Folu Adeboye with some foreign delegates
Pst Janet - UK Coordinator for Feast of Esther
Pastor (Mrs) Folu Adeboye ministering
ince 2002, The Feast of Esther, a global outreach program birthed through the vision of Pastor (Mrs) Folu Adeboye has increasingly become renowned for its unrelenting work in providing leadership and mentoring support to women leaders in ministry. The Feast of Esther aims to develop excellent ‘Ministry Skills’ in women who have been called to support and impact the church of God for nation building and stand as pillars in the house of God to accomplish great things for the Kingdom.
Pst Agu Irukwu ministering
Cross section of delegates
Stronger together In July 2010 a fresh mission initiative was launched at the Festival of Life, with the blessing of the General Overseer, Pastor E.A. Adeboye. Here’s how HOPE has grown as a key RCCG-UK mission partner.
hen HOPE was launched, Pastor Agu Irukwu, Chair of the Executive Council RCCG UK and Senior Pastor of Jesus House UK said: ‘There is a feeling that God is in this and that it is actually larger than we all think. There is a real desire to do something - working together. That desire to work together has borne fruit and now thousands of church leaders are using HOPE’s resources to inspire community engagement. The Heartbeat of Mission is 224-pages of tried-and-tested ideas for mission through a wide range of initiatives from Food Banks and Family Fun days to Pancake Parties and parenting classes. Last year hundreds of churches hosted parties for their communities, as 8.5 million people took to the streets to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee with a Big Jubilee Lunch. Rev Yemi Adedeji , Associate Director of HOPE, says ‘Hundreds of churches followed the HOPE model and reached out into their communities as part of the Jubilee celebrations,’ ‘More than 750,000 of HOPE’s Diamond Jubilee New Testament were given away and that led to
Christmas Lunch on Jesus - reaching out in the festive season
HOPE's Diamond Jubilee New Testament
more community engagement.’ ‘Churches are looking for new ways to reach out to the people in their neighbourhoods,’ says Pastor Yemi. ‘HOPE’s resources are showing churches how to engage in mission, and now many churches are preparing for mission in 2014.’ ‘Momentum is building towards a whole year of mission in 2014,’ explains HOPE’s Executive Director Roy Crowne. ‘Thousands of projects will be running to bless local communities as churches put their faith into action, living out God’s love, proclaiming the gospel in word and action, and doing it all in unity with other Christians.’ Focus on prayer Each denomination and ministry brings its own strengths to the task of reaching Britain with the gospel. RCCG’s emphasis on prayer and fasting has brought increasing depth to HOPE’s mission plans. Writing in HOPE – The Heartbeat of Mission, Pastor Agu says: ‘The more seriously we approach prayer and fasting, the more serious the results
Pastor Agu with the Hope Leadership Team at FOL London.
we will experience in our missional journey… Let us pray and fast, taking control in the spiritual realm, that we might see a continuous transformation of souls in our communities and our nation for Jesus.’ HOPE’s prayer countdown to 2014 starts at the Festival of Life in London’s Excel centre on 18 October 2013 and runs through to 31 January 2014. More than a million copies of HOPE’s Mission Prayer Focus, published by UCB, are being distributed in print and online by HOPE’s partners. The prayers are also available as daily emails from www.ucb.co.uk/prayer. What does HOPE look like? HOPE focuses on key mission moments – a rhythm of mission through the church calendar, using the Christian festivals to connect with people in the neighbourhood around the church: Lent and Easter – Pancakes, Passion Plays, Easter-egg give-aways, shoe shine stalls Pentecost, the Big Lunch and summer festivals – events to build and bless communities Harvest - celebrations and suppers to start courses like Alpha or Christianity Explored Remembrance – with churches taking a lead in 2014’s World War 1 Commemorations Advent, Christmas and New Year – ‘Silent Night’ carol services in sports stadiums Young people are giving a lead to the year of mission through HOPE Revolution Mission Academies (www.hoperevolution.com/mission_academy) with finance from the Church of England’s Youth Evangelism Fund to encourage creative, new and inspiring ways of engaging young people with the Christian faith. HOPE is based on a few simple principles: demonstrating God’s love as local churches work together meeting needs in our communities; continuing to love and serve people whatever they choose to believe; inviting people to go
further in their spiritual journey by sharing the gospel with words in culturally relevant ways; and giving people opportunities to respond to the gospel, then connecting people who do respond into church life. Projects like ‘The Manna Project’ run by Jesus House in London provide a point of contact with people in the community. By using a voucher and donation system, Jesus House is able to reach the local community with the love of Jesus in a tangible way while fighting the poverty that ruins lives. Jesus House has also adopted one of the HOPE ideas by serving pancakes to Brent Cross shoppers in the run-up to Easter. The church – which doesn’t normally mark Pancake Day – teamed up with a mobile creperie to provide pancakes for £1 with a range of toppings. Church members were on hand to explain Lent and Easter, chat about God and pray for people. Several shoppers came to faith right there in the car park! Ade Adedoyin, Head of the Community department at Jesus House, said: ‘Pancake Tuesday is a perfect opportunity to use a much-loved date in the calendar to kick-start the run-up to Easter.’ Roy Crowne added: ‘It takes a lot of humility to say “If we want to reach these people this is what we need to do to reach them”. Although getting heavily into pancakes on Shrove Tuesday is not something they would normally do decided to do this to share Easter hope. They read of the idea in the HOPE for Easter resource and caught the vision.’ As Pastor Agu Irukwu says: ‘Our faith and mission will only become authentic at the junction where our love for God is expressed in our love to our neighbours, without compromising the commission to proclaim the gospel unashamedly.’ Find out more at www.hopetogether.org.uk or contact the HOPE office (email@example.com 01788 542782) for more information.
Next Level Leaders Breakfast With
Dr. Myles Munroe Dr. Myles Munroe is the president and founder of the Bahamas Faith Ministries International (BFMI) and Myles Munroe International (MMI), a Christian growth and resource centre that includes leadership training institutes, a missions agency, a publishing company, a television network, radio and Web communications, and a church community. He is chief executive officer and chairman of the board of the International Third World Leaders Association and president of the International Leadership Training Institute. He is the author of 23 books and is a motivational speaker. He travels throughout the world as a speaker addressing governmentâ€™s leaders, businesses, schools/universities and church congregations. He personally addresses over 500,000 people each year on personal and professional development, and he receives hundreds of invitations every year to speak worldwide. 14
into Agents of Change’. The seminar attendees enjoyed a full buffet style English Breakfast and a chance to talk with others at their table before the seminar itself began. The two sessions were packed with practical principles by Dr. Myles Munroe on topics such as Understanding Leadership and Change, How to be an Influential Leader, the Power of Vision in Leadership and the Philosophy of True Leadership. According to Dr. Myles Munroe ‘true leadership is a personal commitment to sacrifice self for a public cause’.
hat an honour, it was then for Dr. Myles Munroe to be hosted by RCCG UK at Jesus House, London on the 30th September 2013. This free special breakfast event was organised to further equip Pastors and Leaders in RCCG UK and was indeed open to everyone from all walks of life. Titled ‘Developing Next Level Leaders’, its aim was to ‘Transform Followers into Leaders and Leaders
He further advised the attendees on 12 key principles of leadership. These are: Purpose, Vision, Passion, Conviction, Compassion, Principles, Character, Plan, Persistence, Dedication, Sacrifice and Accountability. There was also a question and answer session which brought clarity to the seminar topics. After the seminar he was available to sign books for attendees and even posed for some photographs with them.
RCCG Church Wins Queenâ€™s Golden Jubilee Award In summer this year Amazing Grace Chapel in Kingston-upon-Hull was awarded The Queens Golden Jubilee Award for voluntary service by groups in the community. Sunrise caught up with Parish Pastor Olumide Isaac Aleshinloye to find out more.
Can you tell us about your Social Action Project and what inspired you to embark on it? As a church we were compelled based on the scripture, Matthew 25 to start and we were also encouraged by Pastor Agu Irukwu that as parishes we should launch out and reach out to the community. Four to five years after the church started, attendance appeared to be reducing and it was as if the church was becoming a social gathering. At this point the Lord laid it upon my heart to visit Hull city council and ask for a list of all the care homes. Since then we visit one care home per month with gifts, groceries and clothing and aim to be a blessing to them in any way we can. In addition to being a blessing to Care homes, in what other ways has Amazing Grace Chapel impacted its community? After about two years of the initial project, the Lord laid it upon my heart to get partners within the parish who will join me to reach out to the homeless and jobless who were many in our community. We decided to create a radio advert asking that the first 100 families to come would receive free vouchers from us which they use in any Tesco or Asda shops. This continued for about a year and now we run a Soup Kitchen where we feed 50-60 people every Saturday completely funded by the church. In the last 1 &1/2 years that the soup kitchen has been open
some have given their lives to Christ, some are off the streets now, some are off drugs and have stopped shop lifting to the glory of God. This project has also birthed a parish which holds its services on Sunday evenings led by Pastor Edem for those who were part of our Soup Kitchen Outreach on Saturday evening. Many have been amazed that a church could give out free vouchers and food to people they don’t know on the streets. How did you go about raising financial and human resources to carry out this big project? We have enjoyed enormous favour from the Lord Himself and the church is taking one step at a time. I remember four years ago when the Lord laid it in my heart to go to the Council and find out about care homes, I approached the leadership of the church and shared it with them emphasising that we would not start big but start small with the available resources that we had then. So, we started with £50 groceries for each care home we visited then increased to £60, £80 and then £100. For the second phase of the project where we requested 100 families to come up for free £20 vouchers in church on a particular Sunday, we asked for just £20 per person as 85% of our parishioners were students of the University of Hull.. To God be the glory some of the students have graduated and left but my prayer is that God will bless them wherever they are and also bless all those who have supported this vision. We were able to raise over £2,000 in less than 2 weeks. I also want to celebrate the leadership of my parish as they were solidly behind me all the way. What challenges have you faced so far and how have you been able to conquer them? The main challenge we faced was financing the project. As a matter of fact I, the leadership of the church and members of the hospitality team made sacrificial donations financially every week. Sometimes people went out of their way to bring in food items to the church privately just to support the work. The second challenge we had was that the people on the streets we reached out to, having been there for long and developed some bad habits still came in but some of them made away with some equipment belonging to the church and the entrance of the church was broken into. However, we did not allow any of these to deter us from the vision that God gave to us. We are focused and we are forging ahead by His grace.
You were recently given an award by Her Majesty. Can you tell us what led to this noble recognition? To the glory of God after we began the first phase of our community project which involved reaching out to the care homes, a year later I got an email from a charity requesting us to put up an application for the Queen’s Award for what we were doing in that community, I did not know anything about that at all. We put up the application but it was turned down reasons being that the project had not been tested over time as it was less than a year. We were also told that if we were consistent, someone would get back to us in due course. We left the situation that way and then continued. Three years later I got an email from someone I had never met before saying that they had noticed a tremendous progress in the church as we had moved to our permanent site as this time and the soup kitchen has really grown bigger than when it started. He further iterated that he had been instructed by the Lord Lieutenants to visit our project site and find out what we were doing because they had heard so much about the church and its impact in the community hence they wanted to revisit the application made 4 years previously. He came to our parish, interviewed me and also came to our Soup Kitchen. A few weeks later we got a letter that we had been nominated for the Queen’s Award. Weeks after that I was contacted to nominate three other church leaders to join me at the Queen’s Garden Party at the Buckingham Palace on the 22nd of May, 2013 which to the glory of God coincided with my 20th wedding anniversary. Accompanied by my wife and two leaders of the church, it was a wonderful experience indeed. When we got into the garden having a nice time, suddenly one of the chamberlains just walked up to us and said “where are you guys from?” and I told him that we were from Hull. And he said “I am not promising you but it is possible that you may likely meet with the Queen”. And that was it! What would be your recommendation to the RCCG and your advice to fellow Pastors in the mission? First I would like to say a big thank you to the leadership of RCCG in the UK. My recommendation to all Pastors in the RCCG UK is this; the time has come for us to look beyond the four walls of our own National Communities and take this land on a global scale. I also encourage all our pastors to have a vision and stay focused. But for vision and the grace of God I could have left Hull by now because it is regarded as a deprived area, students come and they leave after graduation and this has affected us for the past 9 years but with God all things are possible when you remain focused on your goal.
Freedom of Expression Manchester Community Spirit (MCS) is a charity located in Levenshulme, Manchester. They aim to change the lives of young people for the better through various activities, music, creative and performing arts. Sunrise wanted to find out what inspired a successful music artist to start a Charity that helps young people. We talked to the Director Nicola Witter aka Ni-Cola to find out more: Could you tell me a little of how Manchester Community Spirit as a charity organization came about? Having performed on countless stages across the UK and overseas, I would meet some of the most amazing young people, who have so much potential and needed support, but being on stage performing and then signing autographs, I felt limited in what I could actually do with these precious souls. In 2011 Ni-Cola Ministries the organization behind Ni-Cola the artist, received a grant to create a second studio album, â€œLove out Loudâ€? which became an outreach tool to young people, given out freely on my UK and US Tour. Having received such an amazing response from fans and supporters we were approached by a charity about our vision, and after much prayer and discussions they encouraged us to write a business plan that would channel a community approach to reaching young people across Manchester with the Gospel, using the creative arts and the rest is history. In November 2012 we became a registered charity called Manchester Community Spirit. We launched at the beginning of 2013 and havenâ€™t looked back since.
The name of your organization is interesting as many say that community spirit no longer exists in this individualistic society, what do you think, does it still exist in your experience? We as a charity work in a large community of migrants, asylum seekers, and people on the fringes of society. The common thread amongst these amazing people is humanity and that we all need each other irrespective of our background or status. We organized a Gospel concert in June, and we invited the whole community. 80% of our audience were from the Czech Republic and Romania, they came as families and as a growing community. They were so thankful that we are in the heart of their community and they could not stop praising how they felt at the concert. That night I saw Community Spirit! Part of your objectives as an organization is to give young people the opportunity to be everything they can be whilst being free to express themselves in a fun and safe environment. How do you identify the potentials in the young people you work with and empower them to express themselves freely? Young people face various challenges in the run up to
adulthood, and a lot of them are confused, misunderstood and need support. We do a lot of community outreach on the streets where we go out to where young people gather, and talk to them, ask them what they like to do, what would they like to see different in the communities they live in, we try to meet them where they are. We run various taster sessions, using dance, drama, multimedia, beauty, and fashion, all the things that they are into. We give them the opportunity to create something new, learn new skills and discover what they are passionate about. We are also now a registered Arts Award Centre so our young people can now be accredited for their work within Manchester Community Spirit. What would you say are the biggest challenges facing young people and how can the church be of help? To be honest the church has a long way to go when it comes to young people. Often adults see children and young people as problems, “They make too much noise, or they won’t do as their told”. We are losing a lot of young people to the world, because unfortunately in my opinion a lot of churches are religious and irrelevant. A lot of youth provision previously came out of the church, that’s where youth clubs and camps were born, but now we are so focused on the adults and us a having a good time, that young people now attend secular youth projects, and when they’re of a certain age, just end up in the club or some other way of entertaining themselves. Young people are increasing having mental health issues, being seduced by peer pressure into drug and alcohol abuse, and having premature relationships. Sex, Pornography and STDs are all too common. Yet I feel that often the church is still not hearing them. If churches looked at how much of church is actually devoted to targeting young people, we would realize it’s not enough. If we want our young people to stay in church we need to listen to them. I would suggest that churches employ a youth worker who is passionate about young people and evangelism. Do some practical things to engage them, even create a youth council and give a voice to the young people. A lot of the work you do with young people involves music. Do you feel that expressing themselves musically is somewhat therapeutic for them? Yes that is a part of it, we were made by a very creative God, which means human beings are full of creativity. However, a lot of us have never had the opportunity to explore this within us. We are so task orientated and rarely focus on the process of a thing, and it is often in the process that the real nuggets are revealed. Young people love to create something out of nothing. For example take a few young boys we were working with on a project tagged “In My city” this was targeted at young boys, either involved or at risk of being involved in youth crime. We used music to engage with them, they wrote and composed a track that they then went onto perform at our community concert. They really enjoyed being in a studio, working with professional equipment, and building their confidence skills. All their friends and families came to watch them perform, and they have been literally begging for more of these sessions. The song they wrote spoke about how they want to change the community they live in for good, and how their area looks from their perspective.
You have a project called ‘I am Beautiful’ for girls aged 1116yrs, can you tell us more about this? ‘I am Beautiful’ is a self-esteem building project aimed at disadvantaged young women, who have issues with body image, relationships and self-confidence. We run mini sessions, using arts and crafts, making bracelets, a singing workshop, dance workshop, a mental health workshop, music production and much more. These were designed to creatively deal with the above issues whilst also having fun in a safe and confidential environment. The girls were amazing, one young girl Sarah aged 14 said, I’ve never seen a picture of myself and actually liked it, but this one that was taken of me during a photo shoot I really like.” Comments like these are a major improvement in a young person’s life, and are the very reasons why Manchester Community spirit exists, we want to improve the lives of our young people and build their confidence and self-esteem. What other projects are up and coming that you would like to tell the readers about? At the end of October we are launching a new weekly drop in project tagged “Xpress” sessions involving music production, dance, drama, Zumba, sports, career development, music performance, photography, film, residentials and much more. These will offer young people a variety of activities to take part in and the sessions will offer talented young people accredited certification that can go towards college and UCAS credits. We also offer volunteering opportunities for our older young people, in multimedia, event planning, and working with the younger people in their sessions. We also have plans, to have a summer school, mentorship program, and on a larger scale, a Christian dedicated arts academy for aspiring young people. These projects act as an extension of the church offering an alternative style of evangelism to young people. How is the organization funded and can our readers donate financially to projects that you do? We are partially funded by the Lottery, and Educational trusts, we also receive donations from individuals. As we know there have been many cuts to public funding and so resources are very limited. If any of your readers would like to support this vision and want to know more about us they can contact us on 0161-850-311 or visit our website at www.manchestercs.org.uk where they can also make an online donation.
The Pilgrim Sindile went on a mission trip to Burundi desiring to make a difference to the people she met but found herself changed and impacted by the stories of those she went to help. Below is her inspiring story.
t has been two months since returning from a trip that changed my life forever. If you had asked me some months ago what my life would be like... I would tell you without hesitation. I thought I knew what life was until God decided to show me. Like any other christian, I knew and understood routine. I had my role in this life that we call christianity, I knew the motions, spoke the right words, sang the right words, prayed the right words. Little did I conceive that all that was a matter of the head: when God decides to change a man, suddenly the question isn’t about the head but about the heart. I had never intended to go to Burundi. I had never even heard of Burundi before the opportunity came. I remember the ease at which this trip insinuated itself into my life: I wasn’t aware that God was the one at work. The trip I went on, was under the International Citizen Service: a government program that aims at making the youth of the UK true global citizens. The agency that handled my particular trip was a Christian Charity called Tearfund. The sector within which our trip fell was Transform. I thought when we went that I was going on a transform trip i.e. a trip to transform the lives of other Teaching English to School Teachers
Preparing soya milk
people. I was ignorant of the fact that God was in the business of changing my life and shocking my system right along. I settled into life in Burundi very easily. Over the ten weeks we engaged in project work that was profoundly personal. Our engagement involved a great many people; the group alone was enough of a collective, however we found that the experience required intimate engagement for it to be truly fruitful. We met with a lot of people, all from very different walks of life. From those that worked in close contact with us to the beneficiaries of the work we were there to do. The reception was always the same whether young or old: there was a deep exuberance and joy; a love of community and deep worship of God. Many in the most desperate of situations showed us such kindness and hospitality: we were often left amazed. We taught English, setup and facilitated workshops on life skills, we worked on the farms right alongside our new friends: tilling the ground and planting fruit bearing seed. We ‘toiled’. We endured the sunshine and came to enjoy it; we were fascinated by the thunderstorms and came to appreciate the rain, as a group
we tolerated each other and came to love one another. The experience was incomparable. We met people that God used to change us. There was Chantelle and her son Alfred who had been ‘let down’ by the health system; we met a group of women living with HIV/AIDS but making such a difference in their community…more excited about life than many others. We met a group of young people so passionate about God that their fire was tangible. We met Aileen a 17 year old girl who thirsted for education like the desert thirsts for water. Aileen is striking. She is more beautiful than most of her friends. When one considers her physically, she is perfect: with short hair and no ounce of makeup: she is classically beautiful. She is tall and lithe, always smiling, always surrounded by other girls her age. She is the cream of the crop: young, beautiful and popular. However she has access to no formal education because her first responsibility is to work on the family farm: whenever required, day in, day out. She cannot go to school no-matter her desire to learn. The strongest memory I have of this young lady that resonates deeply took place on a beautiful Friday afternoon as we were facilitating a discussion in her village. She sat on one of the scratched sturdy pews in this beautiful and tiny church building that was constructed using mud and hardwood. The sun was high up and you could smell the nature surrounding us. We were discussing hygiene and had taken a short break to give opportunity for other discussions to go on. I remember looking across the room at where she was sitting and seeing her holding a notebook, her head bent, diligently writing something down. We went over to ask her what she was doing and she told us she was writing down all the words she heard us say in English. This way she could learn the language a lot more quickly. We then enquired why she had to do this, did she not have school for all that. That is when she shared her situation with us. I was moved. I cannot remember ever feeling that way. I was shocked by how unfair life could be. I remembered how easily I have been able to access education and such opportunities all my life and I wanted to fight. I decided that day to be the voice of change for Aileen and those in similar situations. That I would draw attention to her situation, I would advocate. I decided that whatever it took to act for her I would. God granting me grace I would act justly concerning Aileen and others like her. In her case it is a question of education and literacy. Her opportunities to improve her life and that of her family are fairly low without education. She may not be able to be economically active when her only opportunities lie in farming and cultivating. Often the produce gained isn’t enough to feed the family. The picture of her future that was painted by present circumstance left a lot to be desired. There is a lot we cannot do for her but we can at least advocate; so that she has access to opportunities that could change her life forever: and so I will advocate, I will use my voice as encouraged throughout scripture.
Joining the Diocese of Gitega,Youth Choir
It is this experience and many others that God used to transform me. By the time I got on the plane back to London I was not the same. The shock of coming back home and fighting with the complacency that sometimes follows returning to comfort has been tough. But I have made up my mind; I will facilitate change for others wherever I go. As God has used people to change me; I give him me and ask him to use me as an agent of change. We are called to be light and that is what I intend to be. A light for others to be able to find light. I know my life has changed and I want to encourage you young person, student; I want to encourage you mother, father, man, woman, girl, boy, lady and gentleman… We are the change agents. As God works in us and through us, he makes us instruments of change, agents of light in an age of darkness. This is what we are called to; to Act justly, Love mercy and Walk humbly with our God. (Micah 6:8) I encourage you to do this. To be the change you want to see in the world: but to do this you must see the need for change in the first place. Find the heart of God and there you will find the change that is needed in this world then the rest is the outworking of God’s grace in your life. Find purpose today: find God and live a life that makes a difference… TODAY. For more please find below a list of resources and links that may be useful. There are many resources out there and many ways to get involved. These are just a few. International Citizen Service: http://www.dfid.gov.uk/ICS Tearfund: http://www.tearfund.org/ Rhythms: http://rhythms.org/ Live 58: http://www.live58.org/ My blog: http://offtoblog.me/ Books to read: Discipling Nations: The Power of Truth to Transform Cultures by Darrow Miller Lift the Label: The Hidden Cost of Your Lifestyle by David Westlake I am praying that you will change the way you live to change the way someone else lives too. Sindile Moyo
and Its Effect on
Your Relationships We’re stressed out, burned out and put out with lives spinning out of control. Because we are stressed out, we don’t want our relationships to stress us out more by putting pressure on us.
e want low maintenance relationships and therefore don’t want to or cannot put the same effort in to them as we once would have yet we expect to reap a reward from where we haven’t sown. The truth is however that we need to balance life beginning with God first and learn to use the rest of our time to invest in what is important to us. Our attitude matters a lot, do you allow yourself to feel that life is spinning out of control or do you realise that God is in control? Everything in the universe, from galaxies down to atoms, spin? But they don’t spin out of control because God has everything in control and timed perfectly. Rick Warren, author of Purpose Driven Life says: “It’s not about you. The purpose of your life is far greater than your own personal fulfilment, your peace of mind, or even your happiness. It’s far greater than your family, your career, or even your wildest dreams and ambitions. If you want to know why you were placed on this planet, you must begin with God. You were born by His purpose for His purpose. To avoid burnout then, we need to know what God’s purpose for our life is.
Maybe you are putting all your efforts into your relationships with business colleagues rather than your marriage. Now your marriage is having problems and you are not reaping the rewards you expected to in your business and now you don’t know what to do. The key is to refocus on what God says you should focus on. You cannot carry more than what God has purposed for you, it won’t work. Those who succeed in doing more than what looks physically possible do so because they are doing so in the correct sphere of influence for them. What is burnout? It is physical or mental collapse caused by overwork or stress. If you are in your purpose you will find that your stress levels will go down. You need to move from burnout to breakthrough which is where your relationships will flourish and you are breaking ground in every area of your life. Burnout will cause you to be angry, irritable, oversensitive and listless, all of which are detrimental to positive relationships. Breakthrough will come when your stress level is reduced and you are working in your purpose. Which are you, Burnout or Breakthrough?
Everything in the universe, from galaxies down to atoms, spin? But they don’t spin out of control because God has everything in control and timed perfectly.
Here are the 12 signs: 1. When in breakthrough mode you can’t wait to start the day. In burnout you can’t wait for the day to end. 2. In breakthrough mode you are performing out of the overflow of Christ’s life in you. In burnout you are ministering purely out of your natural giftings rather than a fresh infilling from the Holy Spirit. 3. In breakthrough mode you have passion to serve. In burnout you have passion for pleasure and relaxation. 4. In breakthrough mode you are living within set boundaries that enable self-renewal. In burnout you constantly feel like
you are living outside of the measure of God’s grace for service. 5. In breakthrough mode your mind is constantly being renewed with fresh ideas, creativity, and vision to conquer. In burnout your mind and emotions are worn out and you are in maintenance mode. 6. In breakthrough mode you are walking in the fruit of the Spirit; in burnout the fruit of the flesh. 7. In breakthrough mode you have time for soul care. In burnout you only have time for serving others. 8. In breakthrough mode you envision great expansion of ministry, relationships and business. In burnout you dream of retirement and contemplate giving up. 9. In breakthrough mode you proactively spend time with key relationships. In burnout your time is spent reacting to relational problems. 10. In breakthrough mode you are in faith; in burnout you are living in fear. 11. In breakthrough mode you are refreshed in spite of your stress. In burnout mode you are depressed because of the stress. 12. In breakthrough mode you sense clarity of vision and purpose. In burnout you experience confusion regarding your purpose
Emotional signs and symptoms of burnout · Sense of failure and self-doubt · Feeling helpless, trapped, and defeated · Detachment, feeling alone in the world · Loss of motivation · Increasingly cynical and negative outlook · Decreased satisfaction and sense of accomplishment
Other tips. · Live one day at a time in Him Matthew 6:34 · Change the things you can and have a positive attitude towards the things you can’t. There are some things you can control in life – your choice of job, who your friends are, your coffee intake and late nights. For the things you can’t your attitude towards them and how you react determines your stress level. People who regularly get upset over small things suffer in many ways, those who shrug them off do better. · Define your top priority “I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. For I want you to understand what really matters, so that you may live pure and blameless lives until the day of Christ’s return”. Phil. 1:9-10 · Unclutter your mind. Sometimes our mind looks like our wardrobe, we fill it with stuff that doesn’t need to be there. Take an inventory of what’s in your mind and measure it by Phil. 4:8. · If you’re stressed out, getting enough sleep is necessary. Give yourself time to wind down before going to bed, and create the quietest, darkest sleeping space possible · Make your devotion or quiet time a priority. · Eat! Skipping meals and snacks leads to low blood sugar, fatigue and brain fog, making you feel unable to cope. Discipline yourself to get some real food into your mouth as soon as you get up - you’ll feel much calmer, clearer and more focused. Make sure you eat throughout the day and don’t let yourself ever get too hungry. Don’t ignore your body’s cues for needing food and water, no matter how busy you are. · Drink water - Most people don’t drink enough water, and end up feeling dehydrated, tired, cranky and achy. Next time you feel dry or in need of a liquid “pick me up,” go for the water bottle instead of coffee. In fact, experts say that once you feel thirsty, you’re already dehydrated, so drink up. An added bonus? Water helps flush toxins away. · One day a week, try to avoid doing anything that feels like work. Turn off your phone. Don’t go online. Take a nap. Read a good book. Spend some time with your family and friends. Go for a walk together. This day of rest and rejuvenation will refresh you and give you the energy you need to face the trenches yet again for another week.
Behavioural signs and symptoms of burnout · Withdrawing from responsibilities · Isolating yourself from others · Procrastinating, taking longer to get things done · Using food, drugs, or alcohol to cope · Taking out your frustrations on others · Skipping work or coming in late and leaving early
It might seem like a lot of effort to implement all these changes, in fact maybe even more stressful. However these small changes will make a big difference and will turn your home from a war zone to a peaceful haven. Burnout means you have no energy to invest in your relationships and they start to breakdown. Turn it around and you will see breakthrough instead of burnout.
Burnout, is about not enough. Being burned out means feeling empty, devoid of motivation, and beyond caring. People experiencing burnout often don’t see any hope of positive change in their situations. If excessive stress is like drowning in responsibilities, burnout is being all dried up. Physical signs and symptoms of burnout · Feeling tired and drained most of the time · Lowered immunity, feeling sick a lot · Frequent headaches, back pain, muscle aches · Change in appetite or sleep habits
Dealing with Burnout: The “Three R” Approach · Recognize – Watch for the warning signs of burnout · Reverse – Undo the damage by managing stress and seeking support · Resilience – Build your resilience to stress by taking care of your physical and emotional health
Andrea Onduku You can contact Andrea via www.mattersofheart.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org
7 Pillars of
Wisdom Dr. Akpo Onduku (Pastor RCCG Chapel of Grace Bradford)
“Wisdom has built her house, She has hewn out her seven pillars” (Proverbs 9:1 NKJV).
he characteriscs of wisdom has been personiﬁed in this proverb. Wisdom has been symbolised as a woman who has built a permanent house for herself. “Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom. And in all your geng, get understanding” (Proverbs 4:7 NKJV). Wisdom didn’t build a tent that can be easily destroyed but a house. Therefore, wisdom is a permanent structure that is necessary to provide shelter. This is a permanent solid house with seven pillars in place to support it which cannot be moved. The emphasis here is on the importance and the permanency of wisdom. Wisdom is permanent and must be housed for the long term. In the Hebrew, seven is Shevah which comes from the root word savah, which means to be full or sasﬁed. It is, therefore, the number of spiritual perfecon or being complete. James 3:17 says “But the wisdom that is from above is ﬁrst pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without parality and without hypocrisy” (NKJV). So wisdom is: Pure, Peaceable, Gentle, Willing to yield, Full of mercy and good fruits, without parality and then without hypocrisy. To understand the 7 pillars of wisdom we must ﬁrst understand that there are four types of wisdom as listed below: 1. The Perfect wisdom of God which was demonstrated when He created the world. This wisdom cannot be understood by man. 2. Wisdom of the world 3. Wisdom of Solomon (Luke 11:31). 4. Wisdom of God for Man which He reveals to us when we ask Him (James 1:5).
So what are the 7 Pillars of Wisdom? Proverbs 8:12-14 says “I, wisdom, dwell with prudence, And ﬁnd out knowledge and discreon. The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way And the perverse mouth I hate. Counsel is mine, and sound wisdom; I am understanding, I have strength (NKJV). 1. Prudence – (Prov. 8:12; Prov. 1:4, NIV). Wisdom and prudence are always together, inseparable. Prudence is cauon, sound judgement and foresight. 2. Knowledge and discreon – (Prov. 8:12). “When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; Discreon shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee” (Proverbs 2: 10-11). 3. The fear of God (Proverbs 8:13). Proverbs 1:7 clearly states that “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; but fools despise wisdom and instrucon”. Fear means reverence and a right atude to God; to hate evil, pride and arrogance. 4. Counsel – Proverbs 8:14. Counsel means to give good advice and to listen to counsel “Get all the advice and instrucon you can, so you will be wise the rest of your life” (Proverbs 19:20 NLT) 5. Sound Wisdom (Proverbs 8:14). Pung wisdom in every day life. “for receiving instrucon in prudent behaviour, doing what is right and just and fair”; (Proverbs 1:3 NIV) 6. Understanding - (Proverbs 8:14). To understand, we must know that true wisdom comes from only God, we must read the Bible to get wisdom and we must be able to discern wisely between good and evil. 7. Power - (Proverbs 8:14). No point understanding the problem if there is no power to solve it. Wisdom strengthens the wise more than ten rulers of the city (Ecclesiastes 7:19 NKJV).
Wisdom Tips “Don’t long for the good old days for this is not wise” (Ecclesiastes 7:10 NLT). It is beer to strive forwards onto bigger and beer things. “Wisdom and money can get you almost anything, but only wisdom can save your life” (Ecclesiases 7:12 NLT). Although money is good, wisdom is more reliable than money. Know that the principles and wisdom of Jesus will lead to prosperity. Knowing the person of Jesus will take you to heaven but applying His principles and obeying Him will bring prosperity as well as salvaon. For instance, Jesus instructed us in Luke 6:38 that “Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.” Therefore, wisdom is necessary for a successful Chrisan life. Success is fulﬁlling the will of God for your life. The required wisdom for success is like a hidden treasure. Proverbs 2:3-6 says “Cry out for insight, and ask for understanding. Search for them as you would for silver; seek them like hidden treasures. Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and you will gain
knowledge of God. For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding” (NLT). Therefore, wisdom is not common, you must search for it like treasure for Deuteronomy 4:5-6 says “Look, I now teach you these decrees and regulaons just as the Lord my God commanded me, so that you may obey them in the land you are about to enter and occupy. Obey them completely, and you will display your wisdom and intelligence among the surrounding naons. When they hear all these decrees, they will exclaim, ‘How wise and prudent are the people of this great naon!’ (NLT) Having wisdom should therefore make us to appreciate the fact that everything in life is governed by laws. 7 Fundamental Laws needed for our success are: · The Royal Law – “If you really fulﬁl the royal law according to the Scripture, You shall love your neighbour as yourself,” you do well” (James 2:8 NKJV) · The Golden Rule – “Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (Mahew 7:12 NKJV). If you want success, help someone else to succeed · Law of Potenality – “Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvellous how well I know it” (Psalms 139:14 NLT). Everyone has potenal! Discover it, believe in it and maximise it. · Law of Intenonality – “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people” (Colossians 3:23 NLT). It is God that will repay, not man. · Law of Least Eﬀort – Know that people prefer to do what is easy and has least resistance. Somemes it is wise to balance eﬀort versus outcome. For instance, must I work all through my studies or can’t I get a scholarship that will make life easier? Ask God to show the easier way. It does not, therefore, depend on human desire or eﬀort, but on God’s mercy. (Romans 9:16 NIV) · Law of Reliability – Be trustworthy and dependable “A gossip goes around telling secrets, but those who are trustworthy can keep a conﬁdence” (Proverbs 11:13 NLT). Again, it is said, “If you are faithful in lile things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in lile things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilies. And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own? (Luke 16:10-12 NLT). · Law of Harvest – “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows” (Galaans 6:7 NIV). In fact, “the generous will prosper; those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed” (Proverbs 11:25 NLT). Prayer: Lord give me grace to seek for wisdom more passionately than ever before in Jesus Name. Dr. Akpo Onduku (Pastor RCCG Chapel of Grace Bradford)
Success with the HOLY SPIRIT Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. The mind of sinful man is death, but the mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace;” Romans 8:5-6 n order to understand how to have success with Spirit, we need to first define terms.
Let’s start with The Holy Spirit: Holy means exalted or worthy of complete devotion as one perfect in goodness and righteousness. Holy also means having divine qualities. Only GOD is HOLY according to Revelations 15: 4 “Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? For thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.” SPIRIT in the Hebrew (RUAH) and Latin (Spiritus) both mean “Breath”. Indeed there I a great analogy between Spirit and respiration. A breath is the most immaterial reality we perceive. It cannot be seen; it is intangible; it cannot be grasped by the hand and it seems to be nothing and yet it is very important. The difference between a living and a dead person is that the living can breathe while the dead cant. This is how important the HOLY SPIRIT is to the life of every Human Being.
Who is the Holy Spirit? He is the Third person in the Trinity, also known as the Spirit of GOD. Looking into the creation of man, we can see that man became a living being after GOD breathed into him. Genesis 2:7 says “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.” The breath here signifies the Spirit of GOD. Sin brought separation from God and sin brought death- Romans 5:12 “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” Since Jesus died and resurrected, man has another chance to reconcile with God. In Acts 2, the Holy Spirit was released upon man and this empowered them to live out their Christian walk. As Christians, baptized in the Holy Spirit, He is now with us, in us and upon us. We need Him to live. Therefore any man without the Holy Spirit is as good as a dead man. I pray that every dead thing in your life receives Life in JESUS Name (AMEN).
Success is defined as ‘The achievement of something desired, planned, or attempted’. In a spiritual context, success is the accomplishment or achievement of the divine plan, purpose and destiny for your life. From the Bible, those that accomplished destiny did it through the Holy Spirit. Examples are JESUS and Paul. Paul was speaking as a successful Man according to 2Timothy 4:6-7 “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:” May the ALMIGHTY GOD enable us achieve success in JESUS Name (AMEN). Now that we understand a little about the Holy Spirit and success, let’s now look at Success with the Holy Spirit. There is no success without the Holy Spirit. The roles of the Holy Spirit were most evident in the Ministry of JESUS. JESUS’ work on earth was with the Holy Spirit as evidenced in Matthew 3 :16 -17 when the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus like a dove during His baptism. The Holy Spirit is to serve as the director and manager of your life. The Holy Spirit is to serve as a teacher according to John 14: 26 Some of the advantages of having the Holy Spirit; 1. True worship that is acceptable and that our FATHER wants comes through the Holy Spirit according to John 4: 23 “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.” 2. Signs and wonders come through the Holy Spirit – after all JESUS was conceived through the Holy Spirit (Matthew 1:18) 3. The Holy Spirit raises from the dead – JESUS was raised from dead through the Power of the Holy Spirit according to Romans 8:11“But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” 4. The Holy Spirit gives utterance and communication with heaven. The ability to speak in tongues comes from the Holy Spirit – we can see this taking the Disciples as an example according to Acts 2. 5. The Holy Spirit gives confidence and removes all forms of fear. Peter is an example. After the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit descended on the disciples, Peter a man that denied JESUS was recorded to have won 3000 souls for CHRIST according to Acts 2:41 “ Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.”
The Holy Spirit is to serve as the director and manager of your life. The Holy Spirit is to serve as a teacher
6. The Holy Spirit gives the ability to prophesy, dream and see visions according to Acts 2:17 “And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams:” 7. Healing comes through the Holy Spirit. We cannot exhaust everything that you could achieve with the Holy Spirit. The honest truth is that nothing can be done without the Holy Spirit. We live through the Holy Spirit, we are convicted and drawn to GOD through the Holy Spirit, and decisions are made through the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit serves as your guide. The best gift any one can have is the Holy Spirit. The gifts of the Spirit spoke about in 1 Corinthians 12 comes from the Holy Spirit. In conclusion, we can’t achieve destiny without the Holy Spirit. Therefore there is no success without the Spirit of GOD. The Bible says in Mark 8:36 “For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?” My Prayer is that may the Holy Spirit reveal HIMSELF to you, may the Holy Spirit never depart from you and may the Holy Spirit direct your path and lead you to success in JESUS Name (AMEN). As you say the prayer below genuinely, I guarantee you will testify in JESUS Name (AMEN). JESUS, I accept you as my LORD and personal Saviour. Please cleanse me from all my sins through YOUR blood you shed on the cross of Calvary. LORD according to YOUR word in John 14:16 please send me the Holy Spirit in JESUS Name (AMEN). Akinwale Akinyemi
To excel at something, you must be passionate about it. If you do not wake up every day with a great passion for your work, you will be miserable. Yet how many people really wake up to fulﬁl their passion. Today the majority of people will do anything just for the sake of money only to ﬁnd out that money is not everything. Why not do something that you naturally love doing and earn the money anyway.
avid Filo, co-Founder of Yahoo Inc., said this, “We started Yahoo in about April 1994. It started out as a way for us to keep track of the things that we were interested in.” “The world will belong to passionate, driven leaders, people who do not only have enormous amounts of energy, but who can energize those whom they lead.” Jack Welch
What is passion anyway? 1. It is what makes things happen in life. A commitment to passion guarantees success in everything you do in life. Even the impossible things suddenly or over me become possible when you passionately commit to something 2. It is what sustains your gis and talent and your dreams: Gis and talents are mostly not enough without passion. 3. It is what makes the diﬀerence among many people. In 1 Samuel 30:1-6, what made a diﬀerence in David’s life aer he and his men realised what had happened to their families was as a result of passion.
4. It is the fuel that ﬁres and energises you to have the will to win against all odds. It keeps you going while others quit. It pushes you through tough seasons 5. It is what makes you love what you do and do what you love. “Find something you like to do so much that you would gladly do it for nothing and if you learn to do it well, someday people will be happy to pay you for it” John Maxwell 6. It is what drives you to achieve excellence. Only passion drives excellence.
“A passionate person with limited talent will outperform a passive person who possesses greater talent”
SOURCES OF PASSION The secret of all successful men is their passion and if you can follow your passion, it is only a maer of me that you will also achieve excellence. I. Passion is connected to your purpose: When you ﬁnd purpose, you ﬁnd passion. “Purpose is what switches you on and gives you a never ending pursuit in life.” ii. Passion is connected to your Potenal. When you ﬁnd potenal, you ﬁnd passion. Potenal is not who you are now but who you can become. It is not what you have done in the past but what is ahead of you to be achieved. Without passion, potenal will remain untapped because of discouragement iii. Passion is connected to your priories: “ There are many things that will catch my eye, but there are only a few that catch my heart. It is those I consider to pursue.” Tim Redmond iv. Passion is connected to persistence: Persistence is hard work, resilience and focus. The things you do not give up and quit on are what you can call your passion. V. Passion is connected to pain: The thing that sincerely makes you cry is usually what you are passionate about. Whatever does not kill you in life is supposed to make you strong. “10For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvaon. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death”. 2 Corinthians 7:10. You will not always ﬁnd your calling/passion wrapped up in a loving caring situaon. Somemes the situaon may not be that palatable to you. vi. Passion is connected to the Holy Spirit: He is the most important person on earth. The Holy Spirit in your life gives you the uncon to funcon. Acts 1:8 The Holy Spirit is a passionate spirit. “For a remnant of my people will spread out from Jerusalem, a group of survivors from Mount Zion. The passionate commitment of the LORD of Heaven’s Armies will make this happen” Isaiah 37:32 WHAT PASSION CAN DO FOR YOU WHEN PURSUED I never decided to become an author or a writer. In fact, I didn’t even like reading. I remember my father tried his best and bought me books but I never read any unl aer my university educaon. At ﬁrst, I started reading some of the books just to please him unl later I became passionate about them. Aer a while, I discovered my passion for
The secret of all successful men is their passion and if you can follow your passion, it is only a matter of time that you will also achieve excellence. wring and started wring arcles and gradually it turned into books and today people are paying for my books online, in stores around the world. With this, I can conﬁdently share with you the power in pursuing your passion rightly, 1. It creates the ﬁre and provides the fuel to win: There needs to be a ﬁre within to achieve signiﬁcance in life. The journey from gaps to signiﬁcance must always be pursued by passion 2. Failure becomes nothing where passion is at work. Even family and friends may desert or go against you. “8Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the LORD shall be a light unto me.” Micah 7:8-10 3. It is the key to success: No maer how talented or educated you are, you need passion to succeed. “A passionate person with limited talent will outperform a passive person who possesses greater talent” 4. It makes you contagious: Passion is transferable. “You cannot kindle a ﬁre in any other heart unl it is burning within your own.” Eleanor Doan. Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Brand said, “I felt that I could make a diﬀerence. That’s the best reason to go into business, because you feel strongly that you can change things. This is the very reason I can empower you to also become who God has created you to be. It is about also making a diﬀerence in people’s lives and this is what life is all about, making a diﬀerence. Hope this piece blesses you and helps you discover and walk in your passion. God bless you By Deacon Koﬁ Owusu Koﬁ’s current book “Alive For A Purpose” gives more insight on discovering the purpose of God for your life. You can contact him directly to purchase paper backs or kindle edions at www.purposeachievinglife.com
Want To Be
Successful? Grow Your Capacity In These 6 Areas. Everything has limits based on its capacity. I remember an occasion when I was a young boy that demonstrates this principle. I went to fetch water with a big jerry can. I wanted to win the admiration of passers-by and show my buddies that I could take on big challenges. That adventure was foolish and futile. The jerry can was heavier than I could carry, forcing me to go home with a half-filled can of water. My peers jeered at me. I was very ashamed. In my childish exuberance, I had attempted to do something for which I had no capacity. The chair you’re sitting on has capacity. Your computer has capacity. Your stomach has capacity. Houses have capacities. For example, there is an apartment, a detached house, a bungalow, a duplex and a mansion. It’s all about capacity. Take the car as another example. There’s the Passenger Service Vehicle, the Light Commercial Vehicle and the Heavy Goods Vehicle. Each of these has a cargo hauling ability limited by its capacity.
“We all have built- in limits—but we all can also expand those limits by commitment to continuous growth. Growth is a choice... I often say to people, ‘If you don’t grow, you gotta go.’ ” Dr. Samuel Chand Now, let’s take the human being as our last example. In a normal situation, the strength of a 9-year-old boy is less than that of a 16-year-old. Again the capacity of a light weight competitor is not the same as a heavy weight. That is why professional weightlifting has categories, so that athletes compete in a division determined by their body mass. And as the body mass categorization increases, the barbell is progressively loaded from the lightest to heaviest weight. Obviously, weightlifting is a capacity thing.
Grow It. How far you will go in life; how much you will achieve, and how successful you will be, are directly proportional to the capacity you’ve built – and you’re willing to yet build! Who would have thought that Dr. Samuel Chand, a student of Beulah Heights Bible College in 1973 who also worked there as janitor, cook and dishwasher, would return in 1989 as President of the college? Not only that, but under his leadership, it became America’s largest predominantly African-American Bible College. To achieve those milestones, he grew his capacity. And he challenges us to do same in these six points that I have expanded on. (1) Grow Your Leadership Capacity. Inflated balloons will never go higher than the ceiling. The leader is the ceiling. The people he leads are the balloons. According to Dr. Chand 87% of people quit their jobs because of the ceiling. Once the people you lead outgrow you, they will move away from you. Once you cease to inspire them, they’ll go somewhere else. When you continuously make no indelible impact on them, you’d lose them. Obviously, the problem isn’t the balloon; the problem is the ceiling. You can’t lead people to where you’ve never been, and beyond where you’ve never gone. The burden of leadership is to keep moving the ceiling higher. (2) Grow Your Pain Capacity. You will only grow to the threshold of your pain. You’ll never grow beyond the pain you’re willing to embrace. The more you’re pained, the more you’ll gain. The more pain you can handle, the more you will grow. Every growth is a result of change. Every change is a result of loss. And every loss is a result of pain. All growth is about pain. Growth = Change; Change = Loss; Loss = Pain. So Growth = Pain. Never throw away a pain. Learn from it. Never throw away a pain. Earn from it. Never throw away a pain. Profit from it. Never throw away a crisis. Never cry because of crises. Never capitulate to it. Rather, capitalize on it. Leadership is bleeder-ship. If you’re not bleeding, then you’re not leading. Leadership is bru-tiful. Leadership must necessarily be dealt with brutally for it to eventually evolve beautifully. Only those who experience troubles are the ones who’re primed for doubles. (3) Grow Your Exposure Capacity. When you live in an enclosure, your experiences are limited to that enclosure. Your worldview is defined by that enclosure. Anyone who is trapped in a self-imposed cage, or who only travels within a condition-induced circumference, or who keeps swirling in an environment-delineated enclosure, will never believe, know, or experience limitless possibilities that lie outside these confinements. Such people are innovation-averse, and this has far-reaching, devastating effects. Don’t be a local champion. Expand your reading horizon. What you read can cause you to grow. Read ferociously. In your field. Outside your field. What you see can cause you to grow. What you watch can cause you to grow. Where you travel to can cause you to grow. Leave Jerusalem. Get to Judea. Cross into Samaria. Then fly to the uttermost parts of the earth. Travel. See what other people do. Go to places that will inspire you to learn. Associate with people that will
challenge you to think. Expose yourself to new ideas, new paradigms, new theories, new research findings, and new people. The more you’re exposed, the more you’ll grow. (4) Grow Your Character Capacity. If your walk does not match your talk, then your talk is empty. People will not listen to the message if they do not trust the messenger. The messenger is the message. If you take care of your private life, then your public life will take care of itself. Charisma will get you into a room, but character will keep you in the room. Your closest influences determine your character. Your close friends tell who you are. If you lose wealth you’ve not lost anything. If you lose health, you’ve lost something. If you lose character, you’ve lost everything. You can rebuild it, but it takes time and deliberate action. (5) Grow Your Failure Capacity. Failure is not final. It is written with pencil. It can be erased. To succeed, you must embrace failure. Success is failure turned inside out. The more you fail, the more you’ll succeed. Failure should not be the end of adventure, but an opportunity to begin again more intelligently. On September 18, Chelsea Football Club lost their first Champions League home game at Stamford Bridge, London, to Basel Football Club. At post-match press interview, Chelsea’s Coach José Mourhino said: “We go home sad. The supporters go home sad. But tomorrow morning we wake-up and go training...This is the only way I know in football...” This principle does not only apply in football. It holds true in every sphere of human endeavour. In pursuing your set goals, you must learn to handle defeat. You must get up after you fall down. A winner is a loser who fell down, but got up and kept going. Failure bestows on you clarity, wisdom, and perspective. Innovation is serial failure. (6) Grow Your Risk Capacity. Everything in life is a risk. When you are 100% sure, you’re too late. People who gain the more, risk the more. If you’re risk-averse, you’ll not go far. If the things you’re attempting to accomplish don’t make you afraid, then they are way too small. Grow your capacity to attempt big things. Back To My Big Jerry Can. Remember the story I told about the big jerry can of water? The problem was not the size of the jerry can, but my lack of capacity to carry it. The problem is not the size of the harvest, but the size of the harvester. The problem is not the intimidating sizes of the things you want to achieve, but your developed capacity to get them done. How far you will go in life; how much you will achieve; and how successful you will be, are directly proportional to the capacity you’ve built and you’re willing to yet build. You are limited in this life by your capacity. So…grow it! By Bryce Edem Bryce Edem is a writer, blogger, editor, freelance journalist and prolific Bible teacher. You can contact him via: bryceedem.wordpress.com or email@example.com
Women As Change Agents These women knew what they wanted. They were not sentimental about it. They took their lives in their own hands with the view that they would be accountable. They believed they were peculiar and were determined to fulfil the purpose of God for their lives, their background and family history not withstanding
n the book of Num. 27:1-11, we saw five women who were known as the daughters of Zelophehad. Zelophehad was a descendant of Joseph and he was among those that died in the wilderness because of their complaint against God. Zelophehad had no son except for these five daughters. These five women were grieved and they approached the authorities. The question is why were they grieved? Patriarchy is a system of male dominance where importance and power are given to the men and is common in most societies of the world. The women are seen as less important and are relegated to the background as second class citizens. Thank God for education with its overwhelming benefits to humanity as it is an eye opener to primitive societies regarding the identity of women. A lot of changes have taken place over the years and we are still moving on in defining the place of a woman even in modern societies. Looking through the scriptures we see the prevalence of the patriarchal system. In places where census was taken, women and children were excluded in the number. Women had no right of inheritance. In the case of these daughters of Zelophehad, their father’s inheritance was to be passed on to their uncles because he had no son. This formed the basis of their grievance. I want us to take a critical look at five admirable qualities of these five women. They recognised the place of authority. These women went straight to the authorities to lodge a complaint regarding their father’s inheritance. When we are grieved in the church, who do we speak to? Our God is a God of order and He has put people in the places of authority in churches so that order can be maintained. Sometimes things happen in church and the authorities are not aware because they were not told. If these women had gone round the different tribes in Israel to complain and murmur about their grievance and somehow Moses got to know about it, he wouldn’t have taken them seriously. He would have discarded it with a wave of the hand as “women’s talk” that should not be reckoned with. These women were also prompt in approaching the authorities. If they had ‘bottled up’ their
grievance, their father’s inheritance would have been passed on to their uncles but because they spoke out at the right time, they were in the right position to prevent it. The scripture says in Proverbs 15:23b “And a word spoken in due season, how good is it!” They took a bold step. In spite of the rigid societal norm that was in existence in their days, these women took a bold step and stood before the authorities at the door way of the tabernacle of meetings. The door way of the tabernacle of meeting was a sacred place where the authorities took their seats or stood and because of its sacredness, it would be expected that no one should be allowed to move close to the authorities much less women. There would have been barriers in place to ensure a tight security. These women overcame the road blocks and pressed forward in the midst of the crowd, they were unstoppable, and they were undaunted until they got to their destination at the door way to voice out their grievance. Moses had no choice but to listen and he immediately took their case to God. They took responsibility for their own lives. These women knew what they wanted. They were not sentimental about it. They took their lives in their own hands with the view that they would be accountable. They believed they were peculiar and were determined to fulfil the purpose of God for their lives, their background and family history not withstanding. They refused to suffer for the sins of their father. In Ezek. 18:2, God challenged the proverb among the people in the land of Israel which says “The fathers have eaten sour grapes, And the children’s teeth are set on edge” God was against that proverb and commanded the Israelites not to use it again and emphasised that it is the soul that sins that should die. When these women were presenting their case before the authorities, they said their father died in his own sin. What sin? The sin of complaining and murmuring against God. These women were wise enough not to follow after their father’s foot step that led to his death. They took
the right steps when they were grieved and that was why they got the desired result. They demanded for their rightful inheritance. These women made a demand for their inheritance and they gave it all it took. Sometimes when we are faced with the battles of possessing what rightfully belong to us, what God has freely given to us, we become passive and complacent about it. We believe God will fight our battles for us without lifting a finger. Victory over battles of life is not won in complacency. There is a part we need to play and God also has his own a part to play. Most times God is waiting for us to play our part before He intervenes in our situations and that is why it is imperative to know what God would have us do and what God is saying concerning our situations. In 1 Chronicles 12:32, God was speaking concerning the sons of Issachar that they had an understanding of the times and they knew what Israel ought to do. In another scripture, Matt.11:12, “And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of God suffers violence, and the violent take it by force” This scripture clearly indicates that even in our days, we have to take the kingdom, our possessions, our rightful inheritance by force and this was what these women demonstrated, they had a “Fighting Spirit” and a fighting spirit is a winning spirit. They fought for their inheritance and they got it. We have been called to fight the good fight of faith according to 1 Tim.6:12. They were passionate for a change. These women changed the course of history because of their passion for a change. They did not relent until that passion was fed. They destroyed laid down structures of the society that were put in place by the traditions of men which hindered the progress of the female gender in their days. They challenged the status quo AVAILABLE FROM GOOD NEWS BOOKSHOP 654 HIGH ROAD LEYTON LONDON E10 6RN 0208 539 2906
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and brought about a positive change which did not only impact their own generation but many generations after them because they voiced out. When Moses presented their case before God, God said to Moses, the daughters of Zelophehad spoke what is right! They got a divine approval for their claim. Their claim automatically became a law, a statute of judgement. God said henceforth, when a man dies without a son, his inheritance should be passed on to his daughters. Change is made to happen. It does not happen by mere confession; it is as a result of deliberate and calculated actions taken. God does not discriminate between the sexes. In the book of Joel 2:28, the scripture clearly says that in the last days, He will pour out his Spirit upon all flesh. God is looking for vessels that He would use to enforce His kingdom on earth. God has given women the power of influence and that influence is not limited to our homes. God is waiting for us to use that power of influence beyond our homes to the society at large to bring about positive changes that would bring down His kingdom. The society we help to build today will be a better place for our children to live and fulfil their destinies tomorrow. There are catalogues of women that God used in the Scriptures. One of the major factors that inhibit women from being change agents in the hands of our master is fear. The fear of what will people say? What if it doesn’t work? and the fear of past failures. Until we conquer the spirit of fear we aren’t going anywhere. We’ll only be moved and saddened in our hearts by what we see every day. God is counting on us as women in this end and we cannot afford to let Him down. Women rise up and take action! It is not by power, it is not by might but by His Spirit. HAPPINESS OLAYEMI ONASANYA RCCG House of Mercy firstname.lastname@example.org AVAILABLE TO ORDER NOW FROM WWW.AMAZON.CO.UK
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MAKING PARENTING AN ACT OF HONOUR TO GOD
here comes a time in every parent’s life time when God reminds us that we are specifically chosen to raise the children we are blessed with whether biological, foster or adopted for a reason. He does this either by His special grace, maternal or paternal intuition, discernment or daily events and experiences. Every Christian tends to know how important children are to God, especially when they read the popular story of Jesus commanding his disciples to bring the children unto Him. As I read through the book of Acts 23: 16-22, I have come to realise how it can be so easy to overlook children and assume they can’t do much for God, and how a young boy (Pauls sisters son) played an important role in protecting Paul’s life. I have also realised how important children are to God, when he told Moses to ensure that he re-tells the story of all his miraculous experiences to his descendants; how he delivered the Israelites from the hands of Pharaoh (Exodus 10-V2) and the signs and wonders he performed so that every generation will know that HE is Lord. So do we give your children the importance God gives them? If we don’t, then we have failed in honouring God of the treasure stewardship he has bestowed unto us. Parenting is an act of honouring God when we teach our children to serve God. When a parent truly recognises that a child is a gift from God it is vital that we ensure that our children know that there is a God whom we owe our lives to, who watches us, protects and provides for us, who is forever faithful and fair to us. In so doing we need to practice what we preach by showing them that we have to serve God in truth as this is the only path we can take to discovering who we are and our purpose in life. A child who grows up into a man, not knowing his purpose in life will not discover his destiny. To serve God, we need to teach our children how to pray by making them see us praying with them. A man stands tallest and strongest in times of praise and adversity when he is on his knees in prayer. As our children learn to serve God they create a desire to long for God; hence they live their lives where their steps are ordered by God. They learn to reverence God; hence they build characters in walking in the fear of God, where they have both a fascination and awe for the majesty of God. They learn to trust God for all their needs; hence they are hardly tempted by the ways of the world and develop the attribute of delayed gratification. They learn to obey God; hence they obey their parents and give you peace of mind. Ignoring this duty is failing to honour and appreciate the gift of being
a parent Parenting is an act of honouring God when we make a positive impact on our children. When I look at the lives of certain adults and how they have lived their lives, I often wonder what picture they have in their minds or what voices they hear when they make life long choices or display certain characters that defile their purpose in life. I was pleasantly enlightened as I read through 2nd Timothy 1:15. Paul’s letter to Timothy very simply expressed how our homes are fertile fields for planting gospel seeds. A child’s well-being is dependent on how a parent has raised a child when they are innocent, vulnerable and depend on us to care and nurture them. The experiences of childhood often determine how adulthood would be embraced by a child. As parents, we need to ensure we raise happy children by modelling a positive Christian life, so they can pass it on to another generation. Parents have the primary function to impact their children by modelling a life of integrity, love, selflessness, hard work and compassion. These are the virtues that assure our children’s destiny. Parents also have the responsibility to train their children. Following the commandments given to children in Ephesians 6: 1-3, to honour their father and mother, God also instructs parents not to provoke his children to anger, to “bring them up”, to use nurture (discipline) and to use admonition (warnings and instructions). This means we have the responsibility to ensure our children remain under the umbrella of God by teaching them to respect us. To derive this result, we must refrain from discouraging them by neglecting them, by hypocrisy, by continually degrading them, by excessive discipline, by a lack of love or by trying to make our child into what we wanted to be but could never achieve. Parenting is an act of honour to God when we bless our children. God has never viewed children as a burden, but as a blessing. In Mark 10:15 Jesus describes how our hearts should be as innocent and simple as children in order to enter the kingdom of heaven. There are too many children begging to be blessed by their parent just like Esau did. To bless your child is to speak a message that attaches high value and pictures a special future for them with an active commitment as a parent to help them fulfil it. To bless your children is an act of honour to God. May God give us the strength to become beloved parents in whom HE is well pleased in. Amen
Driving Directions: Begin your journey of wisdom with the fear of God ignition Navigate with praise and you will not miss the Pathway to the habitation of God’s presence Never exit Humility Avenue, rather avoid the Motorway of Pride Watch out for the danger sign of SIN, for it leads to the route of destruction and death Don’t enter the roundabout of fear, lest you end up at Faith Close Always remember to obey the traffic light of the Highway of Holiness To reach Success Heights, get going on Diligence Drive Take the Favour Square to reach your destination in no time with God’s speed. As you head towards Peace Boulevard, avoid the Bumps of bitterness At the Temptation Arena, increase your speed, flee! When you get to Trial Street, turn to the Way of Escape that God made for you The grace of God is sufficient, so don’t quit the “Well-doing” Alley When there is traffic jam at the Congestion Parade, don’t ‘compare yourselves to yourselves’ or else you will get a fool’s ticket before you get to the Haven of Rest Bypass Under the Bridge of Challenge is the river of defeat, cross it with perseverance so that you can safely reach Victory Expressway Driving Instructions: Trust the divine direction, for the CCTV camera of heaven watches over you Sergeant Mercy is there as your escort and will help in times of need When you are stuck in the mud of ignorance, the Inspector Truth will set you free Stay focused, be alert, wake up lest you stray off course, stay in your lane! Detective Conscience is your police, you will need to stop at the checkpoint and when needed, don’t insult him When you have a breakdown, the Comforter will aid you, make a divine SOS (save our souls) call Don’t cast off your confidence, even when the road is rough Fuel your tank to fullness at the prayer station The journey is long, so eat and be refreshed at the service station of the Word At the traffic light of life, apply the brake of patience When the weather becomes treacherous, rest on His promise that says “I will be with you” Tiredness of the spirit, soul and body can kill, come apart for a while under the shadow of His wings Watch your conduct and how you make others feel on the road of life, it boomerangs Reduce speed now on endless babblings and arguments that edify not, I’ll rather say halt Beware of your choices and if you miss it allow God to help you recalculate Whatever betides, enjoy the journey, keep the music of hope on Drive carefully with Faith and you will get there – your ‘destiny’s destination’ Emmanuel - God with us - monitors and records our moves, be wise…we will give account Letting God take over the wheel is the best bet! © Bukky Fatokun, September 2013
How to Break Free from
Procrastination Putting off until later what should be done right now is widely known as procrastination. Napoleon Hill put it this way; “Procrastination is the bad habit of putting off until the day after tomorrow what should have been done the day before yesterday.” 36
ince time began, men and women have put off activities, big or small, of enormous potentialities for making positive impacts in their lives. Many have missed huge opportunities for success by putting off simple tasks such as sending a letter off, replying an email or making a phone call. Likewise, some persistently put off making crucial decisions relating to their future, even though they are fully aware of the high consequences they are likely to bring upon themselves if delayed. Hence, rare opportunities for progress and contribution are missed. As Wayne Gretzky said, “Procrastination is one of the most common and deadliest of diseases and its toll on success and happiness is heavy.” While many of us know that procrastination is bad for us, what we end up doing is to procrastinate when we want to deal with our bad habit of procrastination. But the question still remains; why do we put off things we know for sure need to be done? Through my experience working with clients of different backgrounds and psychological conditions, I have come across different reasons why people procrastinate, some of which are conscious while others are unconscious. Let’s look at a few of them briefly. Fear is the one of the main reasons people
procrastinate – fear of failure, fear of rejection, fear of succeeding, etc. If you are afraid of failure, rejection or success, your one and only defence mechanism is procrastination – as it enables you not to get started on the path on which you are unwilling to tread. Here is something important to also bear in mind: The fear of facing the big things in our lives, such as major decisions, projects, or challenging actions, often forces us to start procrastinating on small things as well. We simply allow the minor tasks to remain uncompleted in order to justify our fear of moving unto the major tasks. We feel better about not doing the major tasks if we leave few minor tasks floating around uncompleted. Appearing busy on minor things somehow helps keep our mind away from those main things in our lives we dread to face, even though we know they are supposed to be prioritised. Laziness is another reason people procrastinate. Laziness is an intimate companion of procrastination. But as we all know, laziness does not just exist without a cause; it is usually the effect of a hidden cause – lack of clarity of purpose or goals for living. If there is no clarity of purpose for living, there will be no motivation to get much done. If you do not know what you are looking for, why waste your time getting out of bed to search for it? Humans are goal seeking beings. We
become energised, creative and motivated when there is a worthy goal to strive towards. It is worthy goals that keep humans alive; without it we begin to die. We start to deteriorate, emotionally, mentally and physically, the moment there is no worthy goal to aspire towards. Therefore, laziness is merely an external interpretation of our internal lack of purpose. Now, here is the untaught reason for procrastination; and I call it, Subconscious Blueprint. Subconscious Blueprint is your life operating principles, ingrained on the surface of your subjective mind. It is a set of beliefs which have now formed your psychic makeup or your belief system. This bunch of beliefs basically set the height to which you can attain in life. In order to fully capture the picture I am attempting to paint here, let me say something briefly about the mind. Your mind possesses two unique departments; the conscious and the subconscious mind; in other words, the surface self and the deep self. You interact with your environment through your conscious mind (thoughts, words, actions); but it is your
Subconscious blueprint is responsible for more than 92% of all humans’ procrastinations. subconscious mind that decides how you go about these interactions and what kind of things, people and situations get attracted into your life. In other words, the contents of your subconscious mind (your blueprint) decide the quality of your life experiences. Your conscious mind is the gateway into your subconscious mind. What does that mean? It means that it is your conscious thoughts that shape your subconscious blueprint. Your subconscious blueprint is self-built – you are the builder while your thoughts are the building blocks. That is why it is crucial to pay attention to your dominant thoughts. Through habitual thinking of your conscious thoughts, you programme your subconscious mind, which then become your life operating commands or your subconscious conditioning. You basically become what you keep thinking about. Now, regarding procrastination, you will always put off any action that negates your subconscious conditioning or your life blueprint. What do I mean? Any action that is not consistent with your existing belief system (your subconscious blueprint) is bound to be resisted by the forces of your subconscious mind, regardless of whether it is a positive action or a negative one. Because of the way your subconscious mind is conditioned, you are instinctively supposed to procrastinate on everything unless it is in alignment with your subconscious blueprint. For example, if your financial blueprint says, “you are not smart enough to be wealthy,” you will keep postponing any identified positive actions that might be connecting you to wealth. Why? Because it is contrary to your financial blueprint. Likewise, if your health blueprint says, “you deserve to be fat and weak because your life is a failure,” you will continue to put off exercising or going on a diet. Because it is incongruent with your subconscious blueprint, it is therefore must be opposed and
repelled by your deep self. The subconscious mind is never rational or thoughtful; it is only faithful to keep the already established status quo. That is why even if you manage to get started on any of those incongruent positive actions, it won’t be long before you quit, because it is in disagreement with your deep self. You should also remember that you do not have to be consciously aware of your blueprint, as it is seated in your subconscious mind, below your conscious awareness. You can only see or hear it through the images of yourself you sometimes see in your imagination and through the instinctive inner chattering about yourself that you often hear in your mind. In my opinion, Subconscious blueprint is responsible for more than 92% of all humans’ procrastinations. Once your blueprint is established, your brain automatically creates a neurological pathway of least resistance, meaning that, you will only be motivated to do those tasks that are in harmony with your subconscious blueprint, most of which will be fun and easy, as they are not threats to your blueprint in any case. That is why many with negative financial blueprint, that says, why trying, you are not smart enough to succeed anyway?,” would rather watch TV all day long than to work, write, ready, pray, sell or exercise; because wasting their valuable time is inharmonious with their financial blueprint than taking positive action steps that lead to prosperity. The Key to Freedom But here is the good news; you can re-write your subconscious blueprint. You can alter your subconscious conditioning. How do you do that? By adopting the same method that created your negative blueprint – repetition of thoughts, but this time around ensure you choose your thoughts carefully. Only focus on those positive thoughts about what you desire in your life. As Napoleon has rightly said, “Any idea, plan, or purpose may be placed in the mind through repetition of thought,” so simply write down all the positive things you desire in your life and read them out loud to yourself with great conviction at least twice every day until they are filtered into your subconscious mind. Through habitual thinking, focussing and concentrating on your desired positive outcomes, you will displace the old deepseated belief system and create a new positive one. When this happens, procrastinating whatever is important to fulfil your new positive belief system becomes impossible. The energy to accomplish that which is in harmony with your subconscious blueprint becomes primordial or original to your being. In fact, the energy of the subconscious mind itself will ensure you consistently move towards the directions of your mental blueprint. You become action oriented, with a strong sense of urgency for the results that are consistent with your goals. Begin now to implement the suggestions above and reconstruct your life blueprint. When you do, you will break the back bones of procrastination on those things that matter to your happiness and success. Keep living, loving and learning! And I will see you at the TOP! By: Wale Oladipo Wale Oladipo is a Life Coach, Motivational Speaker, Counsellor and Psychotherapist with an intense passion to help others achieve their maximum potential and live life to the full physically, emotionally, socially and psychologically. You can contact him via www.waleoladipo.com
Matters of the Heart
A problem is only a problem until you find the solution. Are you searching for a solution to a problem that has so far remained elusive? Maybe you need a second opinion or some advice concerning a situation you are facing? Whatever the need, here at Sunrise Magazine, we want to help, whether it be a problem, an irritant, a matter of the heart, a situation at work, dealing with children, youth issues, suicidal thoughts, finance, the stress of day-to-day living or any other issue. We believe at Sunrise Magazine that God has called us to bear one another’s burdens.(Gal 6:2)
With this in mind Sunrise has created an Agony Aunt Problem page. This is a space for you, the reader, where you can write in with your questions or problems and receive honest and non-judgemental advice concerning your situation.
Dear Andrea How can I deal with a very difficult man who doesn't listen to my advice and will only do what he has decided on? He doesn’t listen to me and says I talk too much. He spends more time on his computer than he does talking to me. He is not affectionate or romantic except when he wants me in the bedroom. He even accuses me of infidelity which has never happened. I am worried if I married the right person because I did not pray about choosing a partner as I wasn’t a Christian then and we did not have any counselling. I feel like leaving him but we have a 6 year old son together and I don’t want a broken relationship like my parents. E. K.
currently affecting your marriage. Then secondly, the best thing that you can do is to pray for your husband. You could buy a copy of Stormie Omartian’s book called ‘The Power of a Praying Wife.’ She recounts in the book that her husband treated her so badly and she was about to pack her bags and children and leave when the Holy Spirit told her to pray for him. Over the next days, she tried but found that anytime she tried to pray for him, all she could see was how badly he treated her. She asked God to help her and as she persevered, she found strength to pray for him in every area of his life including his job, family, sense of worth and identity etc. As she continued she began seeing changes in him (not overnight) and now they have a wonderful marriage. There is nothing that God cannot do. Lastly you need to pour your love on him. This may sound foolish when he is mistreating you but the Bible says in Proverbs 17:13 that “If you repay good with evil, evil will never leave your house”. 1 Peter 4:8 says “Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sin”. Go out of your way to pour love on him and he will respond to it because you will always reap what you sow in due season. You might also want to consider attending counselling now with a marriage counsellor or Pastor if your husband agrees. You should have joy in your marriage but leaving would not be the answer. Stick with it, apply these principles and you will be surprised how things will change.
Dear E.K Thank you for getting in touch about this issue. I appreciate how difficult this situation is for you and your courage in trying to fix the situation rather than just leaving the home. It is true that the foundation of anything is very important and so the absence of seeking God’s will and premarital counselling may be affecting your relationship. However, the good news is that according to Hebrews 13:8 Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. According to Revelation 22:13, He is the beginning and the end. This means that Jesus is the one who can revisit the past, He can go to the foundation of a thing and repair it. I would encourage you to use these scriptures in prayer and ask God to repair anything in your foundation as individuals and as a couple that is
Thank you to those who have already written in with your questions, the questions and answers are printed below, if you would like further input, feel free to get in touch.
Dear Andrea I am married to a lady who does not want sex or who will tell you not to touch her unless you force her. We are now nine years in marriage. In line with biblical position, a couple should enjoy sex together but the opposite is the case. She does not enjoy it and finds it physically difficult. I have prayed over it and am still praying. I have bought books for her to help her, quoted biblical messages and met consultant gynaecologists for check-ups etc. I don't want to go hell, I want to enjoy my marriage to the fullest. Kindly help me. Looking forward to hearing from you. S.A.
Dear Andrea I am engaged with a lady. She is of good character and loves me. But the challenge l have in the relationship is that from my teenage days l have always dreamed of a lady that does not have a past relationship, but this my fiancée has had some relationship in the past that did not work out. Each time l remember it l get jealous because l wanted a pure girl without any past. This always disturbs me, though she told me everything about her past relationship...but l wanted someone that has not shared herself with anyone before. Please give me your candid advice. A.B.
Thank you for your candid honesty regarding this issue. I understand from your last statement that you are worried what this might mean for your future as a couple. When counselling couples, what I often find is that they blame each other over the source of the problem. What is more helpful however is that the couple attack the problem together. Externalise the problem, see the problem on a third chair in the room if you like. You have not mentioned your wife’s feelings but I presume that she too is not happy with the situation either. You mention that you ‘bought books for her to help her’. This shows your desire to help rather than just walk away but it may also make her feel that it is her problem and she needs to be fixed which can cause her to have immense feelings of guilt and sorrow. If you both see the problem as shared, it will help. Fast and pray together and read the books together. This will increase the intimacy and bond between you. You mentioned that you have met with consultant gynaecologists which suggests that you may have considered it to be a medical problem. If so there are treatments that can aid with the symptoms that your wife is experiencing that can even be bought without the direction of a doctor. You could explore this as an avenue, however I am most concerned that this should not divide you as a couple. You must stay united and fight this physically and spiritually together. There is nothing too difficult for God to do.
I really understand your feelings on this matter. After all, having waited yourself you would have loved to share that experience with your spouse, discovering what God has for married couples for the first time together. Really this is what God has intended. However many have made mistakes that they have regretted later which I am sure you can relate to in other areas of your life too. I am sure that your fiancée would love to go back in time and correct it so she could share this with you but that is not possible. She has been forgiven by God and she needs to be forgiven by you also. She may not have realised that she would be offending her future husband, she did not know that God had such a wonderful gift for her. Ask God for the grace to forgive her. If you don’t there will always be a seed of resentment and it could even manifest in your physical and emotional relationship with her in marriage. Once you have forgiven her, you must forget about it, knowing that all things are made new by the blood of Jesus. Remember that 2 Cor. 10:5 tells us to bring in to captivity every thought therefore any time that you have a thought that would be detrimental to your marriage, counteract it with 2 Cor. 5:17 that says “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun”. Send your problems or questions, which will be treated in the strictest confidence, to Andrea at email@example.com
A Constant God F
ast flowing rivers may eventually run dry and the great light that rules the day grows weary and seeks for shelter after a while. The mighty oceans fluctuate in their depths just as the tides thereof, rise high and drop low invariably. The lofty mountains may eventually wash away following an increased feat in external or internal reactions. Rocks of fortitude and moxie still raise a question in the hearts of every solitary soul seeking solace. The signposts of home and the sighs relief often fail to refresh the weary traveller who has lost his way. There will always be more roads than one can possibly tread and more questions just as there may be answers to life’s propositions. Faithfulness may be nurtured in the face of doubts that query the veracity of devotion and strict adherence to a hope that glows from within. In the face of many more uncertainties surrounding the theosophy of existence, there is a witness in every true heart that He lives! Men, women and children all look the same in the mirror and beaming light of divine knowledge. The frail thoughts of understanding may find a nest to hatch into maturity if prudence and obeisance abide thereat. Wisdom chooses and futility does the same, but who knows what road eventually leads to fulfilment and gain. Who can really tell if the story of a chosen people told time and time again, will be an adequate testimony for fruitful living? Will the unalterable sure words of history and prophesies be potent in swallowing the insanity the hearts of men have birthed? It is true, every smile wanes and men will only drink at a table where equality is served without prejudice. In all, the barred roads of righteousness and the cravings of gender’s tenderness will forever be understood looking through The Eyes that run to and fro the earth. And the Right Hand that upholds the just will safely guard from the noise and turbulence of a changing world.
In the face of many more uncertainties surrounding the theosophy of existence, there is a witness in every true heart that He lives! A silent night or a busy morning; an old sleepy cathedral stashed in renaissance or a busking new age chapel booming in gusto; what is the true description of the home where the savoury aura of grace dwells? Offence and greed reeks like a bad breath in most assemblies and every gathering is cladded in facades. There is a nudge to ask, where is the substance of the faith the patriarchs professed? Two bended knees and silent words of prayer; an agonising cry for freedom or a furious shout to an adjudged angel. There is a conflict of wisdom and the dimensions of worship wrestle ferociously in
doctrinal fallacies. The heat of passion is repressed and extinguished desires are hidden beneath the surface of busyness without business. It is either a mistaken identity or a lost image. Where are the true shepherds who speak without holding anything back? And where are the children who love remorselessly without a competition for attention before their Father? A people who stand up for the truth without hiding behind the cold bars of connivance and manipulations? Oh, where is the congregation in whose midst that infallible name is consistently and persistently hallowed? There has been a refinement in most gestures to ridicule the forte that acknowledges the very essence of existence. Worse still, colloquialism has lent credence to the idiocy portrayed in naming the only reason we live, move and have our being. Whatever happened to the sense of awe as of old? And where are the voices who proclaim salvation’s true gospel in true reverence? Many an experience is a far cry from what the good old paths teach and portray. The heat of desires eventually ruptures a willing heart in a generation where living by the tenets of piety seems not to be fashionable. The streets are becoming more polluted and many more men are living in despair than before. Blindfolded by a rise in feats and achievements, women are stricken with pride and submissiveness has been misjudged to be passiveness. The children are left to battle with a lost heritage and a missing sense of direction creeps in at every tier of education. Nonetheless, the foundations of eternity stand sure with a clear inscription of a hereafter and an expected end. What hope is possibly left for a failed generation? And what remedy is there for a fortress whose foundation lies waste? Is there still room for the inquisitive minds who seek the true wisdom that wrath the mighty wonders yore? Will the heavy unscrupulous hearts find a place of rest and deliverance? Will the sheep outside the fold be forever lost wandering on strange pastures? What time will the reapers be fully prepped to walk the field of souls? Everyone pays a price to pay for choices made and every good will seeks after a place where peace flows like river; a habitation where justice remains incurable like a mighty fountain. The generous mind eventually ascends the hills far from the wailing and pains of want and lack. And even in the face of incredulity, instruction reaches to the heart of those who chose to pray and not faint. The Bosom nurtures the creed founded in faith, hope and love. Words resonating in silence and a beaming light on the dark treacherous paths of human dreams and pursuits. So, hold fast to that which you have found and don’t falter in this sojourn. This is not a paradigm; it is the earnest fulfilment of the virtuous promises boldly foretold in the oracles of salvation and redemption. Why question the occasions and times of a rejuvenating epiphany? Or why wait until there is a burst of light in the sky blinding every sphere of human influence? Yes, tomorrow may never be and yesterday appears forever lost. But, let today be all that you need to share these words of faithful living to another of like passion. There is a constant God in this changing world… By: Mobayode Akinsolu
Think On These Things By Yinka Oduwole
“In the church, God has given a place first to apostles, second to prophets, and third to teachers. Then God has given a place to those who do miracles, those who have gifts of healing, those who can help others, those who are able to govern, and those who can speak in different languages. Not all are apostles. Not all are prophets. Not all are teachers. Not all do miracles. Not all have gifts of healing. Not all speak in different languages. Not all interpret those languages.“ (1 Corinthians 12:28-30, New Century Version)
t was one of those Aha! moments when the penny finally drops and one suddenly sees what should have perhaps been obvious all along. On that occasion, I came to the exciting but sober realisation that one of the least understood spiritual gifts is possibly that which we commonly refer to as ‘helps‘ or ‘helping others’. This new-found awareness got me thinking. Do we have an accurate understanding of what the Apostle meant when he referred to this gift of the Holy Spirit? If we do, is there sufficient knowledge of how it actually functions in practice? Can we always identify the gift of helps when it is in operation? Furthermore, can such understanding bring comfort to some who, unable to discern this gift at work in their lives, are possibly left feeling unfulfilled in Christian service? The widespread interpretation is that those gifted by God in this area are especially able to serve with much success on assignments requiring higher-than-average levels of hospitality or acts of mercy. This view is, of course, correct. Like most other spiritual gifts, every Christian is expected to be hospitable, kind and merciful but those blessed with the gift of helps are divinely graced to display such virtues at a much higher degree than the average believer. Supernatural healing is a clear example of this logic: believers are encouraged to be healers but not all receive the ‘gifts of healing’ enabling greater, consistent exploits in faith healing. Yet, there is a further sense to the gift of helping others capable of opening up new dimensions of understanding as to how it is worked out in Christian service and daily life. This fresh way of examining the gift of helps comes from revisiting the original word used by Apostle Paul in his letter to the Church in Corinth: antilepsis, a Greek term implying provision of ‘support‘, ‘help‘, ‘relief’, ‘aid‘ or ‘assistance’. As some Bible Scholars suggest, the gift of helps refers to every kind of help God has set forth in the Church. In this radical
interpretation, the gift of helping others cannot be limited to traditional outlets of service such as hospitality and mercy within church but should extend beyond these. Are there ministries in our churches today set up in response to the needs around us that could rightly be understood as providing ‘support’, ‘relief’. ‘aid’ or ‘assistance’ to others? Could we sincerely identify these as ‘helps ministries’? Are those burdened with a desire to feed the poor via the platform of foodbanks operating a ‘helps ministry’? Could ushers who provide a vital service to church life but sometimes struggle to understand their service as being sufficiently spiritual now see things differently? Might those who somehow manage to feed and keep the homeless warm in winter be persons gifted to help others? What about those whose hearts ache at the sight of street-children and exploited women, going out of their comfort zones to rehabilitate such? Is provision of humanitarian assistance and relief during disasters yet another manifestation of this wonderful and spiritual gift called helps? If you are thinking like me, could we, in fact, come to a refreshing and biblically-accurate comprehension that these seemingly mundane acts of service are also deeply spiritual, just as much as the working of miracles, supernatural healings and speaking in languages not learned? As believers in Jesus Christ, we all make up the Body of Christ but differ in function, in much the same way as the different parts of our human bodies perform diverse activities to keep us whole. As the Apostle Paul explains above, not all will be gifted as apostles, prophets, teachers, healers, miracle workers or agents of linguistic wonder. Whatever your gift may be, however, use it fervently to the glory of God in the service of the Church and humanity. We must discern our gifting and use it in love. Dr Oduwole is the Managing Editor of Sunrise and Parish Pastor of RCCG The Risen Christ, Knebworth.
PASTOR ‘PASTORADEBOYE ADEBOYE WORSHIPS WITH WELWYN AND HATFIELD CHURCHES
RCCG SPORTS DAY 2013
eld at the Linford Christie sports Centre in London on August 24th, the Sports Day was a platform for many, to come together from different communities nationwide to bond in friendship based on sporting activity. Entertainment was provided by renowned gospel rapper Faith Child.
RCCG WORKERSâ€™ RALLY April 2013
eld at the Excel Centre London, the Workers Rally provided a forum for all workers in RCCG to be encouraged and exhorted by Pastor Adeboye, the General Overseer of The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG)
FESTIVAL OF LIFE, LONDON April 2013
estival of Life, attended and viewed by tens of thousands of people is a free event hosted by Pastor E.A. Adeboye, General Overseer of RCCG. In attendance were many influential leaders including Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, Commissioner of Police of London. Music was provided by the RCCG UK Mass Choir, Sonnie Badu and Faith Child.
FESTIVAL OF LIFE MANCHESTER July 2013
he North of England were very excited to host Pastor E.A. Adeboye, General Overseer of RCCG and Pastor Mrs Folu Adeboye at Festival of Life this year in July. It was a glorious evening themed Immanuel.
SUNDAY SCHOOL CONFERENCE 2013
he annual Sunday School Conference was held in RCCG Living Faith Connections, Barking themed Establishing The Kingdom with Guest Speakers Pastor Andrew Adeleke and Pastor Wunmi Oladunjoye.
Good Women Conference
he theme of this two day conference which saw women from all over the UK come together in London was â€˜The Dependable Woman & the End Timesâ€™. The conference convener and main speaker was Pastor (Mrs) Folu Adeboye.
RCCG UK NATIONAL CALENDER FORTHCOMING EVENTS CATALYST WEEKEND (FOR CHILDREN, TEENAGERS AND YOUTHS) 1st – 3rd NOVEMBER 2013 All Parishes All Day RCCG NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER 9th NOVEMBER 2013 Regional Centres 2pm- 6pm RCCG UK PASTORS’ INDUCTION COURSE (PIC) - KNEBWORTH 23rd & 30th NOVEMBER 2013 RCCG Central Office UK Redemption House Station Road, Knebworth, Hertfordshire SG3 6AT 9am – 5pm CALLED BY HIS/HER SIDE – LONDON 18th JANUARY 2014 London 10am-5pm ORDAINED MINISTERS CONFERENCE April 10th-12th 2014
A – Z of RCCG Unreached Areas in the UK To the Glory of God, the RCCG continues to extend its presence in the United Kingdom by planting new churches in areas previously unreached by the mission. Please find below a list of yet-to-be-reached locations by the church in the UK. Through God’s guidance, these territories will soon be thriving mission fields. Please pray along with us.
UNREACHED/SLIGHTLY REACHED AREAS IN BUCKINGHAMSHIRE Amersham Aylesbury Beaconsfield Bourne End Bow Brickhill Brill Buckingham Burnham Burnham PC Chalfont St. Peter Charndon
Cheddington Chesham Cholesbury-&-St Leonards Cublington Eaton Bray Edlesborough Flackwell Heath Great Horwood Haddenham Hambleden Lacey Green
Little Chalfont Little Marlow Maids Moreton Marlow Marsh Gibbon Naphill Newport Pagnell Penn Penn and Tylers Green Princes Risborough Quainton
Radnage Stokenchurch Stony Stratford Taplow Thornborough Weedon Wendover West Wycombe Whitchurch
Olugbenga Ogunbode Educationentrepreneur Olugbenga O. Ogunbode (pictured right) with the Dedication
lugbenga Ogunbode, a member of RCCG City of David Cambridge is the CEO/Principal Consultant of TIEC (The Education Corporation), a company he co-founded in August 2004. It is a multi-disciplinary education consultancy group with its Head Office in Cambridge UK and branches in Africa. He is also the Chief Executive Officer Chair of Trustees/Director of Covenant College Cambridge. It is a Pre-University independent Sixth Form College that places the Christian faith at the centre of the curriculum. He has also worked as an international education consultant for colleges and universities in the UK, USA, Canada and Nigeria. He has also consulted for governments and corporate organisations – focusing on international education as a changeagent. Recently the Chairman of RCCG UK Pastor Agu Irukwu and Pastor Modupe Afolabi visited him in Cambridge to see first-hand what is being achieved through his endeavours in Covenant College, Cambridge and they were very impressed by what he has achieved as a young entrepreneur. Covenant College Cambridge provides education to both national and international students within a Christian framework, with an emphasis on caring but firm discipline, excellence in educational and academic achievement, and breadth of creative expression. Olugbenga Ogunbode tells us
about how it all started: “I came to study for my A-levels many years ago at an independent 6th form college in Cambridge. I was dejected and unhappy when my dad told me he was sending me to a college in Cambridge as my plan was to study at a college in London (the happening city I thought)! But over 15years since that decision I thank God and my folks
RCCG UK Chairman Pastor Agu Irukwu commends Olugbenga Ogunbode
for sending me to that school in Cambridge. It really was a game changer! I have since gone on to make Cambridge my second home after Lagos Nigeria of course. In 2004, I set up an education outfit that started as a charity with a dentist friend of mine from high school in
Nigeria. The goal then was to help international students find the very best schools and the encourage them to aim high!.....The rest they say is history. I am a strong believer that education holds the key to a lot of doors in our society and that our success as a nation or a continent is only possible through education. Education is the leading of human souls to what is best and making the best out of them... I therefore call myself an educationentrepreneur. Today, we run 2 schools one in the UK and Nigeria- with a mission to open a few more in the UK and other parts of Africa. What is unique about our schools and training centres is that the Christian faith underpins all that we do. Having ran a totally ‘secular’ organisation for over 10 years before coming to a relationship with Christ. The difference is indeed clear. Running a business/ schools for me has a primary purpose to bring Glory to God and to make a difference in that process”. The mission of Covenant College is something that Olugbenga Ogunbode clearly believes in and is demonstrating and that is ‘Educating the leaders of tomorrow today... leaders that are not just academically sound but sound spiritually, socially, ethically and in character. Leaders who will make their mark in their chosen fields and areas of endeavour’.
JUST BEFORE YOU SAY “I DO” – Part 2
hank you for taking your time to read through the previous edition of this article, we trust God that it indeed blessed you, informed you, empowered you and put you in a vintage position as rightly stated in John 8:32 ‘And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free’. Now that you are aware of the challenges posed by this preventable disease, there’s therefore need for us to look at the simple way out before you get emotionally involved! In the words of a research professor on Sickle Cell Disease and how to curb it, he said ‘. I think education and screening are key steps in the short and long term to try to reduce or mitigate this burden”. JB4 Courtship has as its primary objective the role of massive campaign and creating awareness in every nook and cranny of developed and under-developed nations. THE JB4 COURTSHIP APPROACH In order to succeed at mitigating the challenges posed by Sickle Cell Disease, we have developed the following institutionalized strategies: Catch Them Young Approach This approach is aimed at educating teenagers and young adults in various level of the educational system about Genotype and SCD. We hope to penetrate schools with our message Infotainment Approach Music, dance, drama, choreography and other means of entertainment are universal language which attract both the young and the old, it is envisaged that this approach will definitely reach a larger audience Inter-Faith Approach Based on the fact that Sickle Cell Anaemia is no respecter of religion, colour, race etc, we plan to take this campaign to the gatherings of all known religious sects Walk Against SCD Information dissemination through organized walks around a particular locality is expected to create awareness of the disease as participants will wear branded materials and distribute information leaflets to members of the public Talent And Skill Approach This approach is aimed at engaging healthy competition in the areas of Drawing, Essay Writing and other talent display for a reward Empowerment Approach The following are the three empowerment approaches: To seek, train and commission outstanding members of the public as JB4 ANNOUNCERS who will make use of the various social media and other communication platforms to create much-needed awareness amongst friends, acquaintances and the general public about sickle cell anaemia. To seek, train and commission outstanding members of the public as JB4 AMBASSADORS who will run with the vision and take it into schools, colleges, universities, and other strategic venues
where large numbers of unmarried persons can be found. To look out for accomplished, successful and forthright individuals as JB4 ASSESSORS who will periodically inform the charity about how well JB4 is faring and suggest areas of improvement. You also can join the campaign today. HOW TO GET TESTED Let’s take the testimony of a brother who recently approached his GP for Genotype testing: JB4: Brother Samuel why did you decide to go for a genotype test? Bro. Sam: As a committed Christian brother, I really didn’t think it was necessary to know my genotype, but after I attended the formal launch of JB4 Courtship event in June 2013 in London, I got educated on the benefits of knowing my genotype so I decided to visit my GP’s office JB4: When you told them at the clinic that you wanted to do the test, what was their reaction? Bro. Sam: At the reception, I was told they don’t carry out such test. JB4: Why? Bro. Sam: I guess because it’s not a common disease among the natives of this country so the receptionist may not have been asked about it before and they don’t do it within the surgery. Even when I insisted, I had to book an appointment with the GP before I could get the test. JB4: So when you finally met the doctor what did you tell him/her? Bro. Sam: First of all, the doctor was very surprised. I asked her why and she said that in a very long period of her profession she had never had any one come to her just to check his/her genotype. She then asked me why I wanted to get tested JB4: What reason(s) did you give her? I told her that I was about to make an informed decision on whom to get married to hence it was important to get tested, this gave me the opportunity to introduce JB4 to her and what it was all about. She got excited and straight away prepared a form for me and recommended a hospital which was close to where I live. JB4: How long did it take to carry out the test and get result? Bro. Sam: When I got to the hospital, it took less than 5mins to carry out the test and within 1 week the result was out and I was called to come pick it up. JB4: what then will be your advice to young men and women who wish to also carry out the genotype test? Bro. Sam: I would advise them to be RESOLUTE and PERSISTENT to ensure that they get the test. JB4 Team.
THOMAS EDISON A Story of Prevailing Perseverance That Paid Off
“You may ask yourselves why this column exists. Why are we talking science here? The answer is simple, you need to understand how powerful a human being can become, you need to understand that you are a child of God and you can create just like your heavenly father. It’s important to study these men to discover the secrets to how they maximized potentials, like father like son right”?
homas Edison was a remarkable scientist. He possessed one very unique quality, this one unique quality is important because it’s the difference between a winner and a loser, it takes one from dream to goal! It almost eliminates procrastination and doesn’t care how many times you have failed! It doesn’t care! It’s called PERSEVERANCE! This is one man that didn’t know when to stop or quit. Okay let’s get this straight, first of Thomas Edison was not the first to invent the light bulb, yup you read right. Oh did you? You are one of those who have said times without number that Thomas Edison invented the light bulb, haven’t you? Oh well
you lied and y’all need Jesus! J Here is the right info you probably want to hold onto, Edison was not the first inventor of the electric bulb, he was the first successful inventor of the commercial incandescent light bulb. Despite his staggeringly numerous predicaments Edison is one of the most successful prolific inventors that ever lived! He accumulated more than a thousand Patents! He was human just like you are. Thomas Edison was born into a struggling family, he had 6 other siblings. Out of the 7 children only 4 made it to adulthood. His father, Samuel O. Edison, Jr., struggled to feed his family, he dabbled in many ventures,
most of them unsuccessful. Edison was ill and because of his family’s financial situation he did not start school until the age of 8! Thomas Edison was in school one day when he was sent off early with a letter for his parents, on getting home his mum was surprised as to why he was back so early from school. He handed her the letter from school which read “your son is slow and dumb”! Edison’s mum Nancy Edison couldn’t help but Edison old his mother that she shouldn’t cry and he promised her that the world would not forget his name. Was he right? Edison had a very curious mind; he was very inquisitive which led him to do something very troubling. On one occasion he asked his mum why the goose sits on her eggs, his mum said it was so they could hatch. On another day when Edison went missing, his mum found him sitting on a batch of geese eggs. I have noticed something about these inventors and certain great people of today, they dare to do the not so regular things. Sometimes thinking in an absurd way does the trick. Whatever led anyone into thinking about creating a machine that washes clothes, the combustion engine, the airplane, 3D printers, and Google glass? Trust me when these things were about to be conceived they were absurd to the mind and ears. Another thing I like about the Edison’s story is that his mum constantly supported him, she didn’t give up on him, she could have…I mean they said he was stupid and could not learn anything! She taught Edison at home and look where perseverance took the man to. It is important as parents to prayerfully look out for our children; it is your responsibility as a parent to detect what type of child you have! If you have a genius then train him up that way with the appropriate tools. If you have one that can easily be influenced by peer pressure then teach that child how to believe him/herself, tell the child that they do not need anyone’s opinion to live. Boost their selfesteem and they won’t feel pressured to drink, smoke and do the many appalling things that come with peer pressure.
“When your time is up life will say you were either a winner or a loser”. Edison boldly said: “my mother was the making of me. She was so true, so sure of me, and I felt I had someone to live for, someone I must not disappoint.” Edison slowly became deaf, not completely though. His first patented invention was a flop; he lost his wife when she was only 29yrs of age. He failed a lot but in the end he won big. I have gathered from the Edison story that the only thing that can take you to a positive place where you can achieve your dreams is consistency, they say, slow and steady wins the race. Thomas Edison tried and failed in making his light bulb 1000 times. First of that’s ludicrous! How can you possibly try something more than about 50 times, fail and not just stop? It seems you have to move from normal to abnormal to succeed. If you are normal about it you’ll end up creating something not to different from normal. There is really no other scientist or human being in this world that failed as much as he did. As an engineer the beautiful thing about failing is that it steadily eliminates all the possible things standing in your way leaving you closer and closer to your answer/goal/achievements. At 1000 times he tried one last time and BOOM! It worked! Imagine the excitement. I’d like you to look at it with me in this way, Edison had 1000 problems, obstacles, or issues if you will to resolve. Edison had 1000 wrong approaches, he had 1000 possibilities he needed to be sure were wrong. Each experiment/trial he conducted got him closer and closer to his priceless dream. Do you have that dream that requires a lot of work? Do you have what it takes? Please read the parable of the persistent widow in Luke 18:1-8. Perseverance is the key to unlocking the treasures of both this world and the heavenly. Read also Romans 5:3. Life does not care how many times you fail, it does not care how many times you made a mistake, it doesn’t care if you were thrown out of your house, it doesn’t care if you have lost every single thing you ever owned to a fire disaster, it doesn’t care if you have had 3 or more surgeries in your lifetime, it doesn’t care if you had overwhelming issues every month, it doesn’t care if you have to swallow 10 pills every day to stay alive or if someone cheated you. When your time is up life will say you were either a winner or a loser. We must persevere till the end as Christians (John 15:410). As the men of this world strive to achieve earthly things we must also strive to get eternal things. The Bible says we should abide, God needs us to remain consistently in Him that is true winning (Hebrews 10:36-38). Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety nine percent perspiration – Thomas Alva Edison (1847-1931). Idorenyin Eno
Books You Just Must Read...
...contact your local Christian book shop. 56
Art For Everyone Art is such a subjective thing and that is why it is so wonderful. Look at each painting below and think about the characters involved, what are they thinking? What could their family be like? What are they doing? Where have they come from, where are they going? Every person who looks at the paintings will come to a different conclusion but that is good. The purpose of art is to provoke a reaction, to get you to think, imagine and dream.
he artist who painted these treasures is Victor Uwaezu originally from Nigeria who is currently studying for an MSc in Electrical Engineering with Power Electronics in the University of Bradford. You may ask how can an engineer be an artist? What began as a hobby has become a passion. His first drawing sketch was of a cup and a bottle and it was at this point around the age of 8 that he discovered he had a talent for Art.
You can contact Victor Uwaezu via firstname.lastname@example.org or www.victorartgallery.co.uk
Victor works with acrylic and oil paint, watercolour, charcoal and graphite. His work is currently on display in his University and includes portraitures, Western landscapes and Traditional African contemporary Art which he themed ”Art for Everyone”. When asked what inspires him, Victor said “Art is the reflection of innermost feelings portrayed as images, with every individual having a right to a different translation”. The combination of being an Artist and Engineer is practical because every field of Engineering is actually the Art of taking an imagination and creating its reality”
Confused? “Everyone has an opinion about my choice of spouse, should I listen to them”?
o you have made a choice concerning your spouse, you’ve popped the question and she said yes or as the lady, you’ve said yes, there are smiles all over your faces. Now it’s time to inform friends and family members and suddenly smiles evaporate as you are met with stunned faces, frowns and varying opinions. As a couple you expected everyone to celebrate with you, so what happened and should you pay attention?
I have personally been in this position from two perspectives. I have been the friend with an opinion and I have been the one who had to bear the frowns and opinions. As a result of these experiences, my conclusion is that it is wise to listen to what others have to say but ask the Holy Spirit to help you discern the motives behind their opinions. The engagement period provides time to watch, to investigate, and to confirm your decision so you don’t need to be afraid or intimidated by a few questions or reservations that people have. Rather use them to ask your own questions and be sure of your decision. Ignoring doubts or questions is not a good idea as they will niggle at you when things are challenge during marriage. I had reservations concerning a friend’s choice of spouse because he didn’t seem to treat her very well and this kind
of behaviour normally worsens after marriage. I spoke to her several times as did others but the wedding went ahead and unfortunately they were divorced some time later at a very young age. Sometimes friends, family members or spiritual leaders may see what you are not seeing and they want to share this with you because they love you and don’t want to see you get hurt. There is no need to argue with them, appreciate their opinion and consider what they have said. Perhaps talk it over with your fiancée and discuss the areas of concern that have been raised and come to peace with them. When the individual that raised the concern sees that you have resolved the issue, they may be happy to support you and celebrate with you. Proverbs 15:22 says “Plans go wrong for lack of advice; many advisers bring success”. Also Proverbs 11:14 says “Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counsellors there is
“It is wise to listen to what others have to say but ask the Holy Spirit to help you discern the motives behind their opinions”.
safety”. It is wise then to take into account what those who know you well have to say. Don’t immediately shut them down and engage in a war of words or cut them out of your life. There is a temptation to feel that it is you and your spouse against the world, so who needs anyone else anyway? But you will discover that when married you still need that support system around you. You don’t want to isolate yourself from everyone and find yourself alone and regretting your decisions. That being said, you must also ascertain the motives behind some opinions and decide whether you should be dissuaded from your relationship because of them. Is the individual being motivated by fear, jealousy or maybe misunderstanding? Those close to you may be afraid they will lose you when you get married, they enjoy having you around and while they want you to be happy, they are not prepared to lose you. This may seem selfish on their part but in these circumstances, a little reassurance that you will remain friends and have time together should squash any negativity about your choice of spouse. They may also be afraid for you if there is a difference in culture or getting married will mean you need to move country for example. Perhaps they are worried that you will not be happy in your new life. Again showing them that you have considered
There is a temptation to feel that it is you and your spouse against the world, so who needs anyone else anyway?
these issues adequately and prepared yourself for it should allay their fears. Be careful not to fall prey to their fears. If God has spoken to you concerning your spouse, deal with issues wisely but not in fear. 2 Timothy 1:7 says “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline”. There may also be misunderstanding involved, perhaps they have misinterpreted your fiancée’s intentions or are suspicious of him/her. Perhaps they say they just don’t like him or her or have a ‘bad feeling’. Your spouse not only marries you but marries into your family and friend circle. It is advisable then that you take time to allow your friends and family to get acquainted with your choice of spouse. It is not advised that you discuss every disagreement that you have with your fiancée with others. Long after you have made up with your fiancée and forgotten the disagreement, those you confided in will remember and remind you later
and this could sow seeds of disunity in your relationship. Remember that there is nothing that cannot be solved in prayer. In my case those who had reservations about my choice of spouse because of our different backgrounds became great supporters and were those celebrating most at the wedding! Why? As a couple we prayed purposefully that God would cause everyone to celebrate with us and God spoke to them on the issue. We had no fear that our marriage would not work because we prepared for it, we prayed, fasted, studied the Word and everything it has to say about love and marriage. This meant that we were not dissuaded by others’ reservations as we took them on board and tackled the issues together zealously in preparation for marriage. Lastly there are those who are jealous and have determined that your relationship will be cut short. Be careful not to term everyone who disagrees with your choice of spouse as jealous or malicious. Some may be genuine in their concerns but those who are determined you will not succeed are dangerous. They may not realise it but they are allowing themselves to be used by the enemy whose mission is to kill, steal and destroy (John 10:10). Such people can poison your fiancé against you by warning them against you behind your back all to sabotage your relationship. They can also make up stories about your fiancé in order to cause conflict between you. Others will go as far as to threaten you that they will stop the wedding or cut off contact with you if you go ahead. Getting married is God’s will for you and you must understand that the enemy is against marriage. He will fight you, create misunderstanding, strife and fear all to stop God’s plan for your life. Ecclesiastes 4:12 says “A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken”. The enemy knows that two of you are stronger and so will try to divide you even using those closest to you. Don’t fall prey to their tactics. Be sure to hear from God yourself concerning your choice of spouse and know the voice of God and how He speaks to you so that you will not listen to a contrary voice. If you are close to God and those close to you criticise your choice, you will know whether what they are saying confirms what God has already spoken to you about or whether it is completely contrary to thwart your destiny. John 10:4-5 says “After he has gathered his own flock, he walks ahead of them, and they follow him because they know his voice. They won’t follow a stranger; they will run from him because they don’t know his voice.” No matter the storm, listen for God’s voice and allow Him to guide you and all will be well. Andrea Onduku You can contact Andrea via www.mattersofheart.org or email her via email@example.com
SOUL SURVIVOR Y
ou hear of terrorism here, knife-killings there, rape and paedophilic activities, abortion clinics and rampant drug deals. Property prices are rising, binge-drinking is on the rise. It seems like the best-used products are sexually branded. Non-marital co-habitation is well celebrated. Deceit, backstabbing, negative speech and sarcasm are rife. Vulgar music is considered normal. Street fighting, yob culture and gun crime are on the increase. Wild partying and clubbing sprees and sexual perversion are all infesting our communities. Transsexual and homosexual cultures are tolerated, accepted and even celebrated to the point of now being able to get legally married all of which the bible condemns in clear terms. Romans 1:26-27 What is the solution? Who will stand against this tide? Many young people do not consider responsibilities in life. Many expect the government to provide for their every need. They ask for what the country can do for them rather than what they can do for it. There is dishonour to human life, unstable relationships and outright independence from authority figures parents to teachers; not to mention political leaders. What about the sexually transmitted diseases associated with the ways of life that we have adopted? The prices attached to them: taxpayers funds used in sponsoring the reprobate mindsets and acts, hundreds of people that end up in mental health homes, the rise in suicidal cases, emotional distresses and depression, murder on the rise and the future of our nation,-the youths- blighted. What is the solution? Who will stand against this tide? The UK has one of the highest rates of teenage pregnancy and abortions, our prisons are overcrowded, teachers are crying out for help to curb their delinquent students. Parents are screaming on top of their voices. Social workers don’t seem to get it right
What is the solution? Who will stand against this tide? 60
when dealing with the young adults, so much that psychologists whose theories and previously-proven methods are foiled by the new behavioural patterns. What is the solution? Who will stand against this tide? It seems like our society is in a state of chaos. A quagmire maybe? Everything seems to be upside down but much more, it reminds me of some words spoken thousands of years ago.”In the last days, perilous times shall abound” (2Tim 3:1) and yes, we’re in those days. “Would someone act and do something now or else…..” is the cry of many a person. These days seem like the days of Lot in Sodom & Gomorrah. Yet a few people got spared from the destruction and sinful ways which were accepted as the norm. On the other hand, songs of joy, jubilation, excitement, enthusiasm, expectations, faith, love, glory, honour, and peace find their way to many in the midst of the chaos. These ones are experiencing heaven on earth. They have the peace that surpasses all human understanding, relishing the beauty of love that passes knowledge and enjoying unmerited favour in their day to day lives. This latter group is chanting the battle cry songs, saying “we’re gonna raise the banners of righteousness”. They’re striving towards perfection, believing in the supreme and divine power for change. They’re standing up against non-marital co-habitation and pre/non-marital sex. They’re living counter-cultural to the youthful exuberances and having great times without getting drunk with booze. They relax and ease off stress without smoking. They detest filthy, smoke-filled, swearing, drunken environments and associations. This breed I’m describing does not uphold moral values for the sake of rules but proclaim the kingdom that would outlast every other kingdom. They bear on their hearts the mandate of their king and ruler: Jesus. They are a radical opposition to sexual perversion, nudity and drunkenness. These people are young, virile, vivacious, alive but dead to the world. They have a different
This breed I’m describing does not uphold moral values for the sake of rules but proclaim the kingdom that would outlast every other kingdom taste in entertainment. They understand that if it’s bad for children, then, it’s not good for adults either. They’re not going for the MTV grooves and the adult movies’ world. No! Not these ones. They feed on materials that ooze out purity. They feed on life-transforming messages, ideas, inspirational, dignifying and guess… godly stuff. They live in the world but are not of this world. They dance to a distant music knowing that if only their hope is in this world, they will be of men most miserable and to be pitied (1Cor 5:19). They’ve come to understand that they are pilgrims on a journey whose house is in the heavens (2 Cor 5:1). They live self-controlled lives; have peace inspite of the roaring waves and changing tides. They’re not petrified by terrorism because they have a different spirit that infuses power, love and soundness of mind into them (2Tim1:7). They simply say “no” to perversion and do not trade themselves as sex symbols. They exhibit joy unexplainable in the midst of the worst crises. These ones have their minds renewed by the truth of God’s word. They fear the greatest being, God, who can destroy both the body and the soul. They believe in the mighty, awesome, glorious, ebullient,
invincible, invisible, immortal and only wise God and model their lives after Him. Isn’t it interesting to know that some humans are living different in this generation? They have different approaches, perspectives and ways of life. These people are definitely extraordinary, and supernatural. Rightly so, they have taken up the super upon their natural to live in this present world. They are devoid of commotion, greed, materialism and secularism. These people are those I call SOUL SURVIVORS. Through it all, their souls are being preserved pure, holy and in truth. The only explanation for their supernatural lives is their surrender to the maker of heaven and earth: God Almighty and in the saving power of His son Jesus Christ. They’re now living as little “Christs” in this world and represent Him. If you’re in this crew, living righteously by the grace of God that has appeared to all men (Titus 2:11) walking with God, not minding the distractions, not giving in to pressures around and raising the banners of victory over sin and the world, I say that you are a SOUL SURVIVOR. Keep the faith, don’t give up now. Press on further. Raise the banner of His love & righteousness higher. Tell your friends about Him and keep the flame burning. Patiently watch as your work and labour of love are rewarded by the Lord. Jesus loves you to bits comrades. We are indeed SOUL SURVIVORS. Let us keep on keeping on soul survivors. By Olanike Adebayo Olanike Adebayo is a writer, author and conference speaker. You can contact her via firstname.lastname@example.org
My HAIRitage: HAIR DAMAGE
ou cannot ignore just how important a woman’s hair is to her, in fact some see it as their splendour and glory. To maintain this splendour needs some work, unfortunately however often times we want fast fixes instead of concentrating on putting the effort in required to get the right results. Even our bible tells us to study to show ourselves approved and this is applicable in every area of life. That is why it is good to educate yourself about how to care for your hair and protect it from damage. Personally, with or without your hair I feel the beauty that radiates inside should also shine through outwardly. What am I saying? While it is good to maintain your outward beauty, let us not forget to focus on cultivating your inner beauty. Remember God’s words of affirmation about you being made in His image. Your choice of cutting or growing your hair is just one way of exercising the gift of free will He gave us. Since I made the choice in September 2009 to cut my hair to start a healthy hair journey I have never looked back. There is so much to learn about caring for your hair. Myles Munroe in one of his sermons noted that ignorance is what makes things seem difficult whilst our bible rightly states ‘my people perish for lack of knowledge’. It is true that all hair grows. But are you successfully retaining your new length or is it breaking off just as fast as it is growing? Many ladies are experiencing what can be referred to as ‘hair stagnancy’ when damage equals growth. In this you are gaining new growth but what is happening is that you are not retaining the length. When your hair is damaged instead of your hair to progress in length it experiences recession, that is, you do not only lose the new growth you also lose hair length you had prior. Thus, your hair loses it health, becomes shorter and/or loses body resulting from damage. Preye’s Tip – Learn to preserve your hair at the ends. Do not just focus on your scalp when you moisturise (using leave-in conditioner or water) and seal with oil. It is important you pay particular attention to the length of your hair strands especially the tips. Give them the respect due for their age I developed a diagram showing sources of hair damage which is illustrated here. These are things that should be avoided or attempt to mitigate.
My Hair is Already Damaged – What Do I do? Now when your hair is experiencing damage there is no quick fix. You literally have to nurse your hair back to life and some extreme cases it will require you letting go of the damaged hair either through gradual trimming or big chop (cutting it all off and starting afresh). It might not be possible to avoid every single source of damage, for instance, UK water is hard and this affects your hair, although you could think of getting a shower filter. Also, heat causes damage but you can minimise this by leaving long intervals between heat applications. Also you could use heat protectors to ensure your natural curl pattern is not affected or damaged. In terms of environmental damage such as the extreme cold we have been experiencing in the UK, I tend to favour protective styles like fixing a weave, wearing wigs, braiding and tying scarfs whilst my own natural hair is protected from the elements (I never neglect my hair in this time as it is sometimes washed but most importantly moisturised and sealed). For those who relax their hair, I do feel the longer you stretch the amount of applications the better at reducing further damage to your strands. Also, avoid relaxing previous relaxed strands, only relax the new growth closest to roots. There is a wide array of resources out there to learn how to care for your hair. Feel free to stop by my blog (www.myafricanHAIRitagestyle.wordpress.com) and ask questions. Shalom! Preye Ombu
iStyle myStyle & uStyle urStyle: BLAZERS
blazer if styled appropriately is fit for almost any occasion as it can be styled with anything from jeans to skirts, shorts and dresses. I cannot emphasise the power of a blazer and how it can bring to life even the most dressed down outfit regardless of your personal sense of style or age. The most basic colour you should have is a black one as this will go with any colour. It does not matter if it is in the style of a tux or in a looser over-sized boyfriend blazer style. Now that summer is officially over this is one staple you cannot afford not to have. Simply get it in heavier materials to make it suitable for the autumn weather. I personally favour tailored pieces like my blazers to be on the looser side though I have one or two that are fitted. Here you can see some pictures of how I have used blazers to bring out my own personal style.
If you want to keep it safe and you are unsure what style to pick from the numerous ones out there in the shops, single-breasted blazers tend to flatter most body shapes. To add a different dimension or give your look some style edge you could roll up your sleeves to your elbow region. Also, to add an extraordinary dimension to your outfit you could opt for a coloured blazer; printed or stripped blazer. When it comes to the striped blazer you have to be careful with your choice as it could either make you look fatter or slimmer. Another personal tip is, if you have worn an outfit before and you want to give it a different look just add a blazer and change your accessories. Till next time, happy styling! Preye Ombu
Faith Child Faith Child is back fresh on the scene with his brand new single ‘Over Me’ and music video to accompany it. While working on the new album, this summer has seen him host his own 10 date tour in Slovakia and perform at festivals across the United Kingdom and Europe with his live band. He was even invited by the Prime Minister for an Easter reception at 10 Downing Street this year. It is obvious that Faith Child is making waves in the UK Gospel Scene and beyond. Sunrise caught up with Faith Child to discover the man behind the music. Could you tell me a little of your testimony of how you became a Christian? I was born and raised in the church but the story of my birth kept me on that straight and narrow. Upon being conceived, my mother went for an abortion and God spoke to her audibly for the first time and told her to keep me because he had placed me in her in for a plan and purpose. Being told this, I knew I was special to God and He had something extraordinary He wanted to do through me Wow! Some of us can struggle all our lives to know or understand the purpose that God has for our lives. Have you always known that God had a plan and purpose for your life of this scale? I always felt God had something special in store for me, but I didn’t know exactly what it was. I did know that I wanted to be in music and the media. The Lord has indeed ordered my steps. I worked hard at what came to me naturally and God honoured my efforts and used it to bless and reach others. How did you get into the genre of music that you are in? I attend RCCG De-Vine Sanctuary in Croydon where we have a
passion for young people. We encourage young people to use their gifts and talents for the glory of God. I saw my older siblings rapping and singing for God, and looking up to them at the tender age of 10, I followed suit. Thirteen years later, I stand before you as Faith Child! I started off in my church, people would see perform at my church and invite me to theirs. I then went from churches, to youth clubs to stadiums spreading Christ and the Christian ethos through music. Who are your biggest influences musically? My biggest musical influence is Kirk Franklin. He helped birth the ‘Urban/Commercial’ sound of Gospel music. He did it at a time where it was deemed wrongly as the devils music. He faced a lot of opposition from the church but still kept his eye on that which God had called him to do and is now one of the most successful and popular Gospel artists recognized in and out of the church.
Can you tell us a little of what fuels your passion and drive in the ministry? I am fueled by the testimonies I hear back from people saying
that they have been blessed and encouraged by my music and more so fueled when used to lead them to Christ. I once received a message from a lady who had suffered from a miscarriage, she had been low and out of work and after hearing my song ‘Just Pose’, based on Psalms 139:14 “For I am fearfully and wonderfully made...” she received the courage to go back to work and get back on her feet. The song doesn’t talk about miscarriages, but God somehow used it to speak to her. Such instances are worth the late nights, early starts and long flights. You recently did a 10 date tour in Slovakia, how was it? What were the highlights. It was amazing! Amongst all the fun, fist pumping and mountain trekking,the highlight would have to be the 200+ young people that accepted God on the tour. That’s the aim. The band and I were so humbled to be used as instruments for them to find the Lord. Ps: The Slovakia food is good too! You recently became the new Uprise TV Host, which is the gospel and inspirational music strand of OHTV. Tell us about that and why you accepted the role. I had always been told I had the personality for TV and when the opportunity came, I took it. As well as being the TV host, I am also the ambassador for Uprise. The role enables me to serve others by opening doors, giving advice, sharing my expertise and being of help. In the short time I’ve been there, the team and I have been able to turn things around and we’re looking forward to that which the Lord has in store. Watch this space!
In your latest single ‘Over Me’ you say ‘They say no man is an island, So I’m ringing the bell bel-fast Ireland. My problems are dub-lin Ireland, I’m falling catch me when I land.’ Have you been to Ireland’? Or what was the inspiration behind those lyrics? Haha! Yes I have been to Ireland, Belfast to be precise. My sister, husband and my 3 beautiful nieces live there. When writing songs I like to write it from a perspective that the masses will be able to relate to. I’m also quite quick on my feet and a fan of good wordplay, hence the opening four bars of the song. In short, no matter what we go through, God is there to catch us. You interact with a lot of young people, what would you say are the biggest challenges facing young people and how can the church be of help? A lot of young people struggle with their identity and make a lot of mistakes in an attempt to find acceptance. I believe the church can be of help by showing them who the Bible says they are and how the Bible is relevant to the affairs of today. Once they know the Bible is more than just Jesus dying on the cross and them abstaining from sin (which by all means is the foundation and premise of our faith), they will be able to see how the Bible relates to everyday life and how it can help them better themselves and find worth. You can find out more about Faith Child via www.faithchildmusic.com/
IMMIGRATION LAW - OPTIONS/ROUTES TO ENTER OR REMAIN IN THE UK.
There have been several changes to UK immigration laws and policies. There are now fewer routes through which migrants can make applications to either come into or remain in the UK. These routes range from visitors, applicants under the points based system and those seeking settlement, just to mention a few.
n the visiting categories, the various schemes include; family visitors, general visitors, business visitors, sports visitors, entertainer and academic visitors, visitors seeking private medical treatment, parent of a child at college, visitors seeking permission to enter for the purposes of marriage, prospective entrepreneurs etc. It is important that prospective applicants coming to the UK fully understand these schemes. Often times, applicants are refused leave to enter the country for various reasons including changes in circumstances, failing to provide supporting evidence and declare intentions of their visits, non disclosure of information, frequent or successive visits to the UK creating suspicion that such people reside longer than they have previously declared. The students, skilled, investment, minister of religion and youth schemes are now under the points based system classified under different Tiers. The routes under Tier 1 include; Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent), Tier 1 (General), Tier 1 (Entrepreneur), Tier 1 (Investors) and Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur). The new changes under Tier 1 although expanded, created restrictions in terms of migrants wishing to establish, join or take over one or more businesses in the UK and limit opportunities for employments. The requirements include access to at least a minimum of £50,000 held in one or more regulated financial institutions to invest in the UK. Under Tier 2, the routes include; Tier 2 (Intra company transfer), Tier 2 (General), Tier 2 (Minister of Religion), Tier 2 (Sports person). It is under Tier 2 that UK employers are permitted to recruit limited number of workers from outside the EEA to fill vacancies that cannot be filled by British or other EEA workers. The question whether the vacancy can be filled by a non – British or other EEA worker is determinant on any of the following factors; namely whether the job(s) is on Home Office shortage occupation list, or the job is at PHD levels, salary on the scale of the published home office guidance and that the vacancy meet the Resident Labour Market Test amongst other requirements. Generally for students, only the Tier 4 route is now applicable for those aged 16 years or over who wish to study in the UK. Students are now only permitted to remain in the UK for degree level study for an aggregate of five years, although there are still a variety of exceptions for students
to spend more than 5 years and this may include Doctorate extensions. It is advisable that students should carefully consider several factors while applying under Tier 4 such as the ratings of their colleges, maintenance issues, limitations to remain, periods of their grants and switching to other categories. It is advisable that students should ensure that they apply for extension before their visas expire. There is a set of requirements for a child student under the age of 16 years and quite distinguishable from adult students. Tier 5 is another route and the maximum stay is between 12 and 24 months depending on the category. It includes the youth mobility scheme for some nationals of certain countries, charity and religious workers, temporary workers, creative and sporting persons etc. There are other categories opened to applicants to remain in the UK and include persons exercising rights of access to a child in the UK, Representatives of overseas business, Domestic workers in private households, persons granted leave under the old work permit employment schemes and persons with UK ancestry. The family routes to remain in the UK include applicants who fall in the following categories spouses and civil partners, victims of domestic violence, fiancé (e) and proposed civil partners, unmarried and same –sex partners, children, parents, grandparents and other dependant relatives. There is also long residence route for applicants who have been lawfully and continuously resident in the UK for 10 years to be granted Indefinite Leave to Remain. The other category to mention is for those many migrants without any form of leave in the UK who may have remained or overstayed in the country. People in this category can bring application raising exceptional circumstances which are consistent with private and family life contained in Article 8 of the ECHR which might warrant consideration of the Secretary of State to grant leave outside the requirements of immigration rules. Other options to remain in the UK on the grounds of private life are now codified under the Immigration rules, for these and other routes described above we advise that applicants should obtain independent legal advice from qualified immigration advisers. OLUKAYODE OKENLA, PARTNER, SIMON BETHEL SOLICITORS email@example.com
58 â€“ 60 Lewisham High Street, London, SE13 5JH Tel: 0208 297 7933 / 0203 384 1389 M: 078 107 16130 or 079 039 14320 E: firstname.lastname@example.org www.simonbethel.co.uk
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