Worship in the midst of afflictions

In life we face many storms. Being a Christian does not exempt us from facing hardships. The Bible tells us that in this world we shall have tribulation. During our walk with God we come across difficulties, across many trials and sorrows. Different people go through different things at different times, and even those who face similar trials handle them in different ways. There are those who have gone through death of a loved one, some have gone through loss of a job, some have faced relatives who are struggling with addictions, some have gone through relationship and marital break down, some have dealt with rebellious children, some have gone through failures in different areas of their lives, some have gone through diseases and illnesses, some have gone through rejection, abuse, mistreatment, and so many other things. Life is full of ups and downs. We usually do not know what the next minute holds. At times all is calm in our lives, but the next minute storms start blowing. One minute everything in our lives seem to be okay, but the next minute there is turmoil all around us.

What do we do when afflictions come into our lives? How do we handle unwanted things that come our way, things that disrupt what we considered normal? Different people approach things in a different way, some through carnal ways, and some, usually very few, through a Spirit-led way. Do you complain and murmur when storms start blowing in your life? Do you blame everyone around you for what you are going through? Do you become a person who throws negative words to other people just because you are going through trials? Do you become a person who is difficult to live with because you over-burden others with your complains, and your murmuring, and your blaming, and your self-pity? Do you treat others in a bad way and then blame it all on your circumstances? Such are carnal ways of dealing with a storm, and this shows that such a person is not surrendered to God. It shows a lack of faith in God when a person is always complaining and acting in fear when afflictions come their way. God’s will for us is to live a life of thanksgiving, not because of our circumstances, but in-spite of our circumstances.

Let us not become people who gives thanks to God only when our lives are going on smoothly. Instead, we should be people who give thanks regardless of our circumstances, whether things are good or they are bad. Our love and praises to God should not be dependent on how good our life is going, it should be in-spite of what life throws at us. In every situation, we are to give thanks. “Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:11-13. God’s grace is always sufficient, no matter what we are going through in life. God’s power works in us and empowers us to face and overcome whatever challenges we may be going through. When we are in Christ, we know without a doubt that God is with us no matter what comes our way. The Bible further tells us that the temptations we face are no different from what others experience, but God is faithful and He will not allow the temptations to be more than we can stand, and even when we are tempted, He will show us a way out so that we can endure.

Job was a perfect and upright man in the eyes of God, yet, he went through many afflictions. However, even in the midst of all the pain, he never cursed God. He went through all the trials in his life still holding on to God, and came out through the other side in victory and a blessed man. When we go through trials, we can choose to respond through the power of the Holy Spirit. We do not have to complain, and murmur, and blame others, and go into self-pity parties, or become a person who is displeasing to be around. Instead, we can choose to worship even in the midst of the afflictions, by the power of the Holy Spirit. Giving thanks and worshiping God when we are in great pain usually goes against our human nature, but it is something that we can do by God’s power. When we are Spirit-led, then we will not respond like the world does, instead, we will sing and give praises to God, we will worship God, and acknowledge that He is sovereign and all-powerful, and that He is able to take us through whatever we are going through, no matter how humanly impossible it may seem to be. Choose to worship God in the midst of afflictions.

The Bible tells us that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose. What we are going through may seem too hard for us at the time, but that might be the same thing that will change our lives for the better. Let us choose to learn the lessons in every situation we are in, whether good or bad. There is always something to learn. May we have a teachable spirit, and pray for God to teach us through His Word the things that we need to learn. Let us allow God to refine us and mold us into the people He desires us to be, for His honor and glory.

“Blessed be the God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith – the salvation of your souls” 1 Peter 1:3-9.





Faithful are the wounds of a friend

We live in a world full of fake things. The world is full of lies and too many people cannot be trusted. Out of the lips of many people comes forth deceit. It is very common for a person to tell you one thing but yet they mean something else. It is common for people to say or do something just to impress you. It is a world full of people pleasing, where too many people are looking for validation and acceptance from the world. Many people will do anything and say anything just to be accepted and to gain the praises of men. There is too much superficiality, people are chasing after vain things of the world. There are many charmers and cunning people out there who are very smooth in what they say and do, yet, it is all a lie. Many people will put on a mask and pretend to be someone they are not just to achieve their desires. Many people will befriend you just to gain something out of you. Many people will enter your life out of jealousy, they will seem genuine for a season, yet, all the while, they know exactly what they are doing and have their minds set on what they eventually want to gain from you. There are others who will enter into your life just to destroy you. Watch out, not everything is as it seems, not everyone is as they appear.

Many people will not tell you the truth. Too many people will tell you what you want to hear instead of what you need to hear. Too many people will do and say things just to appease you and tickle your ears, even though that very thing may be detrimental to you. Many people will watch you going the wrong path and yet say nothing at all. Instead of approaching you and telling you that the path you are heading is wrong, they will instead watch and see you continue going deeper and deeper into ruins. Some will start gossiping and backbiting, they will spread gossip about you like wildfire. When you confide in such people, instead of giving you good counsel and praying for you, they will laugh at you and go out there spreading to others what you have told them. Some will appear friendly and seem to care for you, yet when they go out of your presence, they go backbiting and spreading around things you told them in confidence. There is another group of people who seem to rejoice at the problems of others, they seem to get perverted pleasure in the suffering of others. They will watch you from afar and get satisfaction from the storms you may be undergoing. The world is full of people whose hearts rejoice in the downfall of others.

It is better to walk alone than be in the company of a hypocrite. Having many ‘friends’ does not translate into having quality friends. You may have many people around you who you think are friends, yet those same people would not stand with you when the storms of life come. When we go through trials and tribulations, that is when we usually see the true colors of people. When you are at your lowest, many people will flee from you like a plague. Even people you have known for many years will flee. Thank God for that faithful friend who remains standing when all others have gone. Thank God for that person who will tell you the truth even when that truth is very hard to hear. Rejoice if you have a friend who will tell you what you need to hear and not what you want to hear; that is a faithful friend. A faithful friend will see you going the wrong path, and instead of just watching, they will tell you the truth; they will tell you that what you are doing or saying is wrong if it is actually wrong. No matter how hard the truth may be to hear, a friend who is faithful will still tell you the truth. A faithful friend will keep confidence, you will not have to worry about them gossiping or backbiting or slandering you. Such a friend will pray for you and give you wise counsel grounded in the Word of God. It is better to have one faithful friend than many fake ones. Do not be deceived by the kisses of an enemy.

“Open rebuke is better than secret love. Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful” Proverbs 27:5-6.



If you love God, keep His commandments

There are many people who claim to love God yet they do not obey His commandments. There are many who claim to be God’s children yet their lives testify otherwise. Saying you love God with words only does not mean much. We live in a world whereby out of people’s mouths come empty words and empty talks. Many people seem to like talking yet they have no actions accompanying their words. There are others who think that just because the call themselves Christians or they attend churches on Sundays, they think that shows that they love God. It is hypocrisy to claim to love God if we do not obey His commandments. When we know what the Word of God says yet we do not live our lives in accordance to His Word, then we are living in disobedience and shows that we do not love God. Our words which are not accompanied by obedience do not move God. You can claim all you want that you love God or that you are a Christian but if you are not a doer of God’s Word, then your words become meaningless. “This is love, that we walk according to His commandments, that as you have heard from the beginning, you should walk in it” 2 John 1:6.

The same can be likened to human relationships; it is common to hear people tell one another that they love each other. However, those same people will go and do things that hurt the person they claim to love. The same people will talk to each other using degrading and abusive words, yet still claim they love each other. A person who claims to love you with words only without accompanying actions does not love you. Empty words with no actions mean nothing. If a person abuses you or mistreats you or shows no care towards you or is not available whenever you desire their help or does not take the time to know you or leads you into sin, does not love you. Just because a person can make you feel good and is very charming does not mean that they love you. Just because a person can feed your emotions with nice feelings does not make it love. Usually, that is manipulation, and such a person is selfish and whatever they do is usually done from a self-centered view. If a person is living in sin, if there is no fruit of the Holy Spirit manifesting in that person’s life, then they are not capable of loving any person. Living in unrepentant sin is a sign that one does not love God. “But be doers of the Word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the Word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does” James 1:22-25.

Those who love God are set apart from the world and do not conform to the patterns of the world. If God tell you to do something or stop doing something, your obedience to His Word is what shows that you really love Him. If you know something is sinful, then purpose to stop doing that thing; God will empower you to stop through His Spirit. If you know God wants you to do something, then purpose to do it and God will likewise empower you to do that thing through His Spirit. If you know that there are certain behaviors and attitudes and actions and words that you need to change in your life, ask God to help you make the necessary changes. Let your life be surrendered to Christ Jesus such that you are willing to give up all in order to follow Him. You need to die to wanting to do things your own way and surrender to the will of God for you. If you love God then you are not at liberty to live life just the way you want, your life should be governed by God’s Word and led by His Spirit. When you are actually living for God without compromising with the world, people will know that you are a child of God without you even uttering a word; your way of life becomes a testimony in itself.

“Therefore, brethren, we are debtors – not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God” Romans 8:12-14.



Let your words be few

Some people are like a chatterbox; they talk and talk, yet they do not stop to listen. There are too many people who will not listen to what you have to say, they prefer that you listen to them. It seems like they believe somehow that their views are more important than the views of other people. Such people tend to get very impatient when someone else is talking and barely listen to what that person is saying, they just stand by impatiently and even interrupt the other person so that they can start talking again. People who talk too much seem not to have learned the wisdom in saying less and listening more. When a person is always talking, they do not have time to learn from others and because of that, they most likely will remain stagnant in life and will not grow beyond a certain point. They may erroneously think that because they say too much then they must know better than others, but they forget other people have wisdom to share and most of the time there is always something one can learn from other people. People who talk too much seem to be blinded by their desires to be liked or validated or accepted or to be seen as better than others. Such are usually the most loud and always seem to have an opinion about almost everything. “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit” Proverbs 18:21.

People who talk too much expose too much, whether about their own lives or the lives of other people. It seems like they think that the more they share, the more people will like them. They fail to realize that the same words they speak can later be used against them by some people. Such people cannot be trusted because they easily gossip. The moment you tell them something, they will go and share what you tell them with everyone who will listen to them. In the course of their non-stop talking, they end up sinning against God and against those people who had told them something in confidence. Many people who talk too much are people who cannot keep confidence, they will go spreading something personal that you tell them. If you seek for advice or help from them, some go saying about how you approached them for help. “He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets; therefore do not associate with one who flatters with his lips” Proverbs 20:19.

If a person talks too much, they easily expose their foolishness.  They end up saying things that should not be said or talking in a way that is not fitting for the situation they may be in. In their effort to try and impress people, they end up revealing who they really are. Initially they may seem to know it all but when you listen to them carefully you are able the hear where their heart really is. “He who has knowledge spares his words, and a man of understanding is of a calm spirit. Even a fool is counted wise when he holds his peace; when he shuts his lips, he is considered perceptive” Proverbs 17:27-28. Such people also do not seem to receive correction easily, they are usually haughty and if you correct them they might end up attacking you with demeaning words. They may start telling you all the weaknesses they think you have, they will tell you that you do not mean anything or that your words do not mean anything to them, they will attack your personality, your physical attributes, and degrade you in every way possible. This happens because when you correct them, you bruise their ego, and in an effort to self-preserve, they will attack you in an attempt to bring you down and discredit you. Such people like to be heard but do not give other people time to express themselves. “The wise in heart will receive commands, but a prating fool will fall” Proverbs 10:8.

If you talk too much, it is easy to be deceived. When a person approaches you and you give too many details about yourself, then they can easily use that information that you have given them against you. If you meet a stranger, wisdom says you listen more than you speak, because in listening you are able to discern who that person really is. However, if you meet someone and become over-excited and start telling them everything about you, you will realize that in the end that person will know a lot about you but when you think back about how much you know about them, you will realize that you know very little. When you talk too much, you do yourself a disservice because you block yourself from getting to know the other person, this is because that other person does not get to say much. Be very careful and do not trust yourself into the hands of a stranger who you barely know; just because that person looks good or seems to be wealthy or seems to have it all together does not mean that they can be trusted. Take your time, get to observe the fruits of their lives because that is the true indication of who they really are. “He who guards his mouth preserves his life, but he who opens wide his lips shall have destruction” Proverbs 13:3.

Many people who say too much are also people who make hasty decisions. They quickly think of something, tell it to people, and decide they will do that thing without thinking much about it. This can be in an effort to please people or to be likable. They also tend to make promises that they do not fulfill. They may pledge to give something, or make a promise to another person, even before God, yet after following them up for sometime, you realize the promises they made were empty. They can also borrow something and promise to return at a later date, but when that date of returning arrives, they start making many excuses, and in most cases, the person who had loaned them has to count their loses. They may also seem like they are humble people but usually what they portray is false humility. “Do not be rash with your mouth, and let not your heart utter anything hastily before God. For God is in heaven, and you on earth; therefore let your words be few. For a dream comes through much activity, and a fool’s voice is known by his many words. When you make a vow to God, do not delay to pay it; for He has no pleasure in fools. Pay what you have vowed – better not to vow than to vow and not pay” Ecclesiastes 5:2-5.

Be careful about what you tell people, most people around you who appear as friends are probably not true friends and if they get hold of any information that can bring you down, they will easily jump to that opportunity and try to bring you down. Not everything needs to be said and there are some things you should not disclose except to a very trusted confidant. Above all, learn to take your burdens to God first and with time you will realize that after that you do not need to share with anyone else. God is trustworthy and He is our ever present help in times of need. In addition, when you make any promise to God or in the name of God, be quick to fulfill that promise. Do not make vows that you cannot fulfill, it is better not to make any vow at all than to make one and not fulfill. Fear God and do not utter any careless words. The words you speak will be used either to justify you or to condemn you on the day of judgement.

“But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgement. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned” Matthew 12:36-37.


The wisdom of the world

Growing up, many people did not receive life’s direction based on the Word of God. Many people grow up being told by the world what to do and what to say. Too many people have conformed to the patterns of the world, and this started in childhood. When a child is born, they do not know anything about the world. As the children grow up, they start learning things by observing and listening to the people around them. What children learn greatly impacts their life. Sadly, what many people end up learning is the wisdom of the world that leads to destruction. The world has come up with its ways of doing things; and the ways of the world are usually contradictory to the Word of God. What the world promotes eventually leads to death. Human beings are born with a sinful nature and have a natural propensity towards sin. If a person is not grounded in the Word of God, they will readily follow the world because the ways of the world are more popular and seem to be ‘fun’.

Peer pressure is a great influencer in the world. When worldly peers come together, the result is sin and fruits of the flesh manifest. The world encourages fornication as a way of maintaining a relationship, it encourages destructive behaviors like smoking and alcoholism in order for a person to fit in among their peers. The world encourages taking vengeance on a person who has hurt you. It encourages partying, immorality, having multiple sexual partners, cohabitation as a way of testing out if people are compatible, it encourages gossip, backbiting and slander, lies, manipulation and many other sins. If you ask for advice from a person of the world, most likely you will receive destructive worldly wisdom. The world encourages tit for tat, it encourages doing unto others what they have done to you, it encourages selfishness, it encourages unforgiveness and holding grudges, it encourages trying get even with a person who may have offended you; these are things that go against the Word of God. “But I say to you who hear: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you. To him who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other also. And from him who takes away your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who asks of you. And from him who takes away your goods do not ask them back. And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise” Luke 6:27-31.

The world has labeled sin as ‘having fun’, as ‘pleasure’, as ‘enjoying life’. When a person of the world meets another person who is not having fun according to their definition, they will start telling that person to ‘lighten up’. Usually to lighten up involves engaging in a sinful act. They will tell you that life is short and that you should enjoy it as much as possible. The word sin usually does not come up in conversations among the people of the world. The concept of sin does not seem to exist to them. As a result, people are engaging in all sorts of sin, and when someone points out that what they are doing is actually sinful, those people will look at that person as if that person is weird or even ‘crazy’. Nowadays people who speak the unadulterated Word of God are being called ‘crazy’ or ‘mad’. When a person accepts Jesus Christ and makes major changes in their life in obedience to God, people may start saying that the person has gone ‘mad’ or that there is something ‘off’ about that person. It seems when a person stops following the ways of the world, it makes the people around that person very uncomfortable, and because of that, people start giving that person so many negative labels. “If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you” John 15:18-19.

When a person of the world is offended, they usually turn abusive and also try to destroy the image of the person who has offended them. Many people of the world have mastered throwing abuses towards other people. It seems that those people who abuse get some sort of satisfaction from that. Instead of making peace after an offence has occurred, the world seems to enjoy degrading the other person. Pride, arrogance, and haughtiness are rampant in the world. The love of money and what money can buy is what drives many people in the world. There are people who will do anything, including killing another person, in order to accumulate worldly riches. Polygamy is being promoted in the world, especially when a person has the money to lure many partners. It seems many people have made marriage disposable, divorces and remarriages are happening right left and center. The world promotes the concept of ‘open marriage’, and adultery seems to be the order of the day. Homosexuality has now been branded as ‘normal’, and the world encourages people to be proud of their unnatural and sinful sexual orientation. Seeking fame and recognition is driving many people especially in this age of social media. Show off is rampant; people nowadays are competing showing off their lifestyles, their children, their spouses, showing off their bodies. Humility is lacking in the world. The world is indeed deceived and lost. “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death” Proverbs 14:12.

Do not follow the wisdom of the world. Be very careful whom you seek advice from, otherwise you may end up being given advice that will lead you down the wrong path. The world really has nothing to offer. Things and ways of the world may seem pleasurable for a moment but the end is destruction and eternity in hell. Do not admire those who prosper in their sinful ways, their end is near if they do not repent. “Do not fret because of evildoers, nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass, and wither as the green herb” Psalm 37:1-2. Follow Jesus Christ and walk along the narrow gate and straight way that leads to eternal life. True wisdom comes only from God; the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding” Proverbs 9:10. When you start walking in true wisdom, then your ways will be totally different from the ways of the world, you will begin to move against the currents of the world. People may call you ‘weird’, or ‘crazy’, or ‘mad’, and many other names, but if they are calling you those names because of your love for God, rejoice and continue standing firm on the truth of the Word of God. Do not be moved by what people are saying. If you know that your life is rooted in Truth, then what the world says really does not matter. Fix your eyes on Christ Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. When you become a doer of the Word of God, then you become truly wise.

“Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in meekness of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace” James 3:13-18.




A simple mind is a gullible mind. People who are simple-minded are easily deceived, manipulated, and taken advantage of. When we are simple-minded, we tend to believe everything people tell us; this shows that we are not discerning. It is very risky to be a person of a simple mind because not only does one make many mistakes while on earth, they also risk losing their life to eternity in hell because most of the time such people are crowd-followers following blind people to eternal destruction. The world is stained with sin and is inhabited by human beings who have a fallen nature. If you think that the world is basically a nice place and that majority of people are ‘good’, then you are deceived. If you think in such a way then you will not do due diligence before allowing people into your life. You may end up opening your life to people who will end up ruining your life. If you easily believe people at first glance then you will end up learning the hard way that most people are pretenders and liars who cannot be trusted. Many people of the world are blinded and are walking along the wide path that leads to destruction. Most people live blatantly sinful lifestyles though majority have mastered ways of masking their sin in order to be acceptable in the society. Simple-mindedness will make you fall into the hands of predators, liars, manipulators, abusers, hypocrites, dishonorable people, people who do not care about you but are in your life for their own benefit. “O you simple, understand wisdom: and, you fools, be of an understanding heart” Proverbs 8:5.

Being simple-minded will turn you into a people pleaser. If you do not have good judgement then you will try to please everyone around you. Your words and actions will be altered in a way that appears pleasing to those around you. You will easily accept to do something for someone at your own peril. You will go miles to be there for someone who is only using you. You will do much for people who neither appreciate you nor love you, people who will stab you in the back. You will do what people tell you to do without first thinking if it is the right thing to do, both for you and for them. You will spend your time on others while allocating very little time for your personal development. People pleasing makes you a yes person, it becomes difficult for you to say no, maybe because you do not want to disappoint the other person or because you have poor judgment and your mind is on autopilot. Very few people have your best interest at heart; when most people discover that you are weak-minded, they will see that as an opportunity to take advantage of you.

“Wisdom calls aloud outside; She raises her voice in the open squares. She cries out in the chief concourses, at the openings of the gates in the city She speaks her words: ‘How long, you simple ones, will you love simplicity? For scorners delight in their scorning, and fools hate knowledge. Turn at my rebuke; surely I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make my words known to you. Because I have called and you refused, I have stretched out my hand and no one regarded, because you disdained all my counsel, and would have none of my rebuke, I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your terror comes, when your terror comes like a storm, and your destruction comes like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you. Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently, but they will not find me. Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the Lord, they would have none of my counsel and despised my every rebuke. Therefore they shall eat the fruit of their own way, and be filled to the full with their own fancies. For the turning away of the simple will slay them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them; but whoever listens to me will dwell safely, and will be secure, without fear of evil'” Proverbs 1:20-33.

Many times we open our hearts and lives to people we should never have, and when they leave us deeply hurt, we start wondering why they did something like that to us. During such times it is easy to turn to self-pity and self-hatred. We start wondering what is so wrong with us, especially if those people we had opened to start using condescending language against us. We start thinking that probably we are the reason they left, that there must be something we did wrong. In an effort to try and correct what we think we may have done wrong, we realize that those people, instead of trying to make peace, continue mistreating and degrading us in words and actions. If we do not sober up and discover exactly what is going on, that because of what those people are doing they are actually sinning, then we will be caught up in a downward spiral of trying to apologize while the other person continuously abuses us more and more. If we do not come to the realization that a person abusing or manipulating us is actually ungodly, then we will keep blaming ourselves for other people’s actions and sins. We will keep justifying the behavior of the other person by saying that we must have done something wrong that triggered their cruel words and actions. Such people will continue to demean you over and over again if you allow them until your esteem is trampled down on mud.

Do not justify other people’s sinful actions. Examine yourself, work on your relationship with God, pursue peace with all men and holiness. Even if you somehow wronged the other person, if that person is truly godly, they will respond to you in a way that honors God. There are people who will mistreat you even when you treat them very well, which goes to show that they have things within them that they are still battling; it shows that they are not right with God. Do not be simple-minded, know the Word of God. God’s Word is the source of wisdom. Love what God loves and hate what God hates. Never partake in sin with anyone just because you like that person or because that person looks good on the outside or because there is something about them that you admire or because they seem to have it all together. If someone is an unrepentant sinner, continue praying for them but do not keep close friendship with them. Bad company corrupts good character. “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper. The ungodly are not so, but are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgement, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous. For the Lord knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the ungodly shall perish” Psalm 1:1-6.

Not everything is as it seems and not everyone is as they appear to be. Do not believe every word that comes out of people’s mouths because too many people have mastered lying; they will mix lies with some truth for it to appear acceptable. Do not open your life to just anyone, majority of people should be left outside because if they at one point get access to your life, they will leave you hurt. Most people’s true colors come out once they gain access to your life, and especially when they have gained everything they wanted from you or they have proven a point to themselves or to their friends. When doing transactions with people, whether business or otherwise, beware that you do not fall into the hands of con-artists. When choosing a mate, beware lest you fall into the hands of a predator, or a pervert, or an abuser, or a manipulator, or a liar, or a hypocrite, or a proud and arrogant person, or a person who neither cares about you nor loves you, a person whose sole purpose in your life is to use and misuse you. When interacting with people who have not earned your trust, realize that they are strangers and you really do not know them, no matter how many times you may have interacted with them before. Be slow to open your life to people, take time to know who a person really is, listen carefully and watch the fruits of that other person’s life, do due diligence and find out about who you are really dealing with, and above all, pray for God to give you discernment. “A prudent man foresees the evil, and hides himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished” Proverbs 22:3.

Simple-mindedness has ruined the lives of too many people. Many people have allowed destructive people into their lives; some without knowing it, some because they ignored the bad fruit they saw, and others because of utter carelessness. Beware of what aspects of your life you tell the world, those very same things might be used against you. Many people are not loyal and will turn against you in the split of a second. Some will manipulate what you say and send out a very different message from what you actually meant. Others will go and broadcast what you told them to everyone who listens to them. Some will go and make jokes with their friends about how they managed to manipulate you into doing what they wanted you to do. There are those who will use you to fulfill their sexually immoral desires. A married person will approach you as if they are single and entirely hide the fact that they are actually married, a divorced person will try to present themselves as if they have never been married, a person whose past relationships have failed will try to blame the failures on the partners they have had, a person addicted to pornography will try to use you to fulfill their perverted desires that they have seen in the demonic films and images, a person in a relationship will approach you as if they are single, a person who has always lusted after you will try to get you into a compromising situation to boost their ego; such is the heart of man, extremely wicked. “As it is written: ‘There is none righteous, no, not one; there is none who understands; there is none who seeks after God. They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one. Their throat is an open tomb; with their tongues they have practiced deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips; whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood; destruction and misery are in their ways; and the way of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes'” Romans 3:10-18. Apart from God, human beings are not capable of anything good.

The Word of God is the road-map for our lives on this earth. In every situation, there is a solution found in and guided by God’s Word. Study and meditate, feed your mind with God’s Word and you will gain wisdom. Become a person who fears God, do what God says you should do and stay away from what God says you should stay away from. The Word of God will renew your mind and you will start thinking in a very different manner, and whenever any thought comes to mind that does not align with God’s Word, take it captive to the obedience of Christ. “For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” 2 Corinthians 10:4-5. Investing in your relationship with God is the best thing you can do for yourself, both for this life and the life to come.

When you are close to God, you gain discernment and you easily recognize right from wrong irrespective of the current trends in the world. The world has made good to appear as bad and bad to appear as good, but when you are close to God, you are able to see clearly and you call good, good and bad, bad. When someone approaches you with bad intentions, you are able to discern that because you take time to pray and seek God. When someone tries to pretend to be who they are not, you are able to watch the fruits of their life and see them for who they really are. When someone tries to manipulate you or play reverse psychology on you, you are able to see through their wicked tricks and call them out for who they really are, and when someone tries to demean you in words and actions, you are able to stand up and proclaim who you are in Christ Jesus. When you know who you really are and when your worth is firmly rooted in Christ Jesus, you become unshakable. People will try to say and do all sorts of things to you and against you, but when you know that you are a child of God without a shadow of doubt, then you will not even try to prove yourself to anyone. When you know that you are accepted by God and you strive to do His will, that is all that matters. People rising up against you because of stand for truth will become like noise and you will be able to shut it down and not allow that to affect you negatively.

Whenever you pass through a season of trials, look for the lessons that you can learn from that. When you get to know better, then next time do better and avoid making the same mistakes. When people continuously make the same mistakes over and over again, it shows that they did not take time to learn and improve. If you have been a simple-minded person in the past, then invest in studying the truth that is only found in God’s Word; that will change your life for the better. However, if you are lazy and you do not put in the effort, then you will continue to be simple-minded, being manipulated and taken advantage of, making the same wrong or sinful choices over and over again. For there to be change in your life, you have to be committed and make up your mind to follow Christ no matter the cost. When you do make up your mind, and you are willing, then God’s power, the Holy Spirit, will empower you to make the necessary changes for the glory of God. When you reach your end and surrender to God, then you will discover that God’s grace is sufficient. Be wise, know what the will of God is and live your life in accordance to His will.




How can two walk together if they are not in agreement?

The people that we surround ourselves with say a lot about who we are. For you to choose certain people to be close to, there has to be a certain level of similarity among all of you. Human beings usually choose what is similar to them, not many people choose to be with people who they have nothing in common with. We seek familiarity because that is a safe zone for us. We choose certain people because there are things about them that seem very familiar to us, albeit at a subconscious level. We want security, comfort, a sense of being accepted, we want certain needs to be met, and who better to offer us such except people whom we feel a level of familiarity with.

When two people embark on any journey in life, there must be some sort of agreement between them. It does not have to be a verbal agreement, it may be a certain aspect of the other person’s life that we agree with, it may be something about the other person that we feel we can relate to, it may be a void within us that we somehow think that the other person can fulfill, it may be a certain level of dysfunction in our lives that attracts us to the dysfunction of the other person because we can relate to it at a subconscious level. For people to move forward in a friendship or a relationship, usually there is something about them that unites them together. However, sadly many people are united at a negative sinful level. When a person has grown up in a dysfunctional family or society, they somehow think that is normal. Because of that, they end up attracting dysfunctional people into their lives and build dysfunctional relationships.

When two people enter into a relationship, the initially stages are usually good. However, as time goes on, if their union was built on a wrong foundation, the cracks start appearing and soon that relationship comes crumbling down. When a relationship falls, most people start pointing fingers at one another. During such times, the true colors of people start coming to the surface. During the course of a relationship, many people try their best to project a positive image to the other person in order to be accepted. Such false images that many people try to project are usually not sustainable because usually it is all an act and that is not who they really are. The true colors of such people are usually manifest best when that relationship they were trying to hold on to with their act comes falling down. Many people end up justifying their sinful behaviors by saying that they no longer have anything to lose and thus they can say and do anything to the other person. Others blame the other person for whom they have turned out to be. However, all those are efforts to justify themselves in order to appear as the innocent party. The truth is, the fruit of a person’s life is what reveals who that person is, no matter how long they may have tried to masquerade as ‘nice’ people. “A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit” Matthew 7:18.

During such times of relationship or friendship breakdown, instead of pointing a blaming finger at the other person, ask yourself what attracted you to that person. For you to be friends with or in a relationship with the other person, there must be a point of agreement between or among you. That agreement in most cases is not verbal, it usually is a certain mindset that is similar between the people who are coming together in a friendship or a relationship. The mind is part of the soul. Thus, the souls of two people walking together in life are usually in agreement, mostly at a subconscious level. There is something in your heart that agreed with the heart of the other person, and because of that agreement, you allowed them access into your life. For two people to agree, their hearts are usually in agreement about the step they are about to make together. You cannot walk together with another person except if you are in agreement. “Can two walk together, unless they are agreed? Will a lion roar in the forest, when he has no prey? Will a young lion cry out of his den, if he has caught nothing? Will a bird fall into a snare on the earth, where there is no trap for it? Will a snare spring up from the earth, if it has caught nothing at all? If a trumpet is blown in a city, will not the people be afraid? If there is calamity in a city, will not the Lord have done it?” Amos 3:3-6. Therefore, instead of blaming the other person for all the hurt they have caused in your life, search your heart and ask God to reveal to you aspects in you that are not in alignment with His Word.

If you yoke yourself with a sinner, that shows that there may still be sin in your life. If someone somehow convinced you to fornicate or commit adultery with them, that shows that you are still not submitted to God. For you to agree to commit sin means that your heart is still not surrendered to the Lord and you are still harboring sin in your life. If it were not so, then the moment someone mentioned or even suggested engaging in immorality, you would have fled. If you did not, and you willingly participated in sin, stop blaming the other person, separate yourself from them and start seeking God. Repent to God and renew your mind with the Word of God. Spend time with God in prayer, study and meditate on His Word, ask Him to renew your mind through Christ Jesus by the power of the Holy Spirit. “But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness” Ephesians 4:20-24.

Most of the time we are attracted to certain people because we have certain aspects of our lives or wounds that are yet to be healed. Maybe you were brought up in an abusive family and now you find yourself being with abusive people. Maybe you were sexually assaulted and now you find yourself engaging in all sorts of immorality. Maybe your father was not present in your life and now you find yourself being involved with people who provide a sense of a father figure but they end up requiring you to sin with them, or maybe your father did not do a good job being a dad and now you are involved with people who have a certain aspect of them similar to your father, usually a negative or sinful aspect. Maybe your esteem was so crushed as you were growing up and now you hate yourself and think that you do not deserve anything good, and as a result, you end up attracting predatory abusive people into your life. Maybe you were brought up poor and now you see rich people as better than you and you would even give your body to a rich person just to have that aspect you lacked when growing up. These things and much more usually determine the people we allow into our lives. We usually end up allowing people into our lives who will provide what we missed, or who will be the opposite of what we have experienced, but sadly, the same experiences we may have been trying to avoid usually end up recurring, maybe in a slightly different manner than what we went through, but even though different, still the same.

Until and unless you are healed, you will keep doing the same thing over and over again. You will keep getting involved with the same type of people because your mindset is still the same. If you think like the world, then you will see no problem engaging in sin and you will keep being involved with people who will drive you deeper into sin because you agree at that level. Even if you leave the old friends in an effort to get new ones, if your mind is not renewed, you will attract new friends who are very much like the old. If your soul is lost in sin, you will walk in life with other people who are lost in this world. If you want a spouse while you are still being ruled by the flesh, then you will end up being involved with a lust-filled person who sees no problem sinning against the Holy God. If you tell such a person that fornication and adultery is sin, they will laugh in your face and wonder what you are saying because sin is part of their lives and they see no problem engaging in sin. If you still continue being with such a person, soon the will pull you down the slippery slope of sexual immorality and you will end up being destroyed unless you come into salvation. “Flee from sexual immorality. Every sin that a man does is outside the body, but he who commits sexual immorality sins against his own body” 1 Corinthians 6:18.

God is the only One who can heal the human soul. Too may people in this world have been wounded through their journey in life. After a hurtful incident many people push that into the back of their minds, thinking that if they forget then they are okay. They do not realize that whatever they push at the back of their minds is actually stored in their hearts. Then with time, they will start making all the wrong decisions in their lives and start wondering why they seem to be stagnating. They do not realize that the hurts and sin they pushed back is affecting their current decisions at a subconscious level. If you have faced any sort of trauma in your life, unless you seek the healing that comes only from God, then you will end up wondering why you make one step forward and then two steps backwards. You will keep going round and round unless you decide to stop, ask God to search your heart and reveal to you anything within you that does not please Him and that is still not healed. “Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” Psalm 139:23-24. There are some wounds we have forgotten yet they still affect us. Just because you have forgotten something does not mean that that aspect of your life is healed. If you find yourself at a roadblock, repeating the same mistakes over and over, relating with the same type of people over and over who end up pulling you down, then realize that possibly there is a certain part of your heart that is not right with God. Take it to God in prayer, He is faithful, and when you seek Him with all your heart, you will find Him. The Holy Spirit will reveal to you many things that you did not even know existed within you.

When your mind is renewed, it means your thoughts are aligned with the Word of God. It means that you call sin for what it is and you do not try to justify your sin or other people’s sin. It means that if someone approaches you and tries to lead you into sin, you resist them upfront and you do not try to please them. If what they want you to say or do does not please God, then you refuse to go along with it. When your mind is renewed, you start thinking in accordance to the Word of God. You realize that God’s Word is the only source of truth and if anyone approaches you with suggestions that go contrary to what you know is true, then you decide that you will not continue entertaining that person. When your mind is renewed, you have a change of heart, what you once thought was good, you now see it for what it is. That person who you thought was so nice, you start seeing them for who they really are. If that person is a sinner, you see them for who they really are, you pray for them that soon they will come to the knowledge of Christ. With a changed mind, the things of the world no longer impress you, the charms used by the people of the world no longer mean anything to you, the honey-coated words no longer move you because you see them for what they are. The ‘confidence’ of the people of the world that used to fascinate you, now you see it for what it really is, pride and arrogance. That person who pretended to love you, you see them for who they really are; maybe the person was jealous, maybe they were abusive, maybe they were very perverted, maybe they were liars, backbiters and slanderous, maybe they were very insecure and that is why they tried to bring you down – you stop justifying the actions of other people who are living in sin, you stop calling that sin-laden unrepentant person ‘good’.

When we receive healing, then we are able to make different and better choices in life. When we are made whole by God, then we no longer seek validation and acceptance from other people, we no longer attract people in our lives with whom our dysfunctional pasts remind us of, we no longer accept to engage in sin with other people. Our choices are no longer affected by our past but by the Word of God. When you are whole and healed, you are able to choose whole and healed people. The people you start walking with reflect your new mindset. You are no longer with people to fill your voids, you now know that only God can heal and fill those voids present in our hearts. You no longer seek validation from people, you know that you are loved by God with an everlasting love in Christ Jesus. You no longer seek people with whom you relate with in sinful brokenness because now you are pursuing holiness and righteousness, and the people you now want to relate with are those who are also pursuing God. You no longer seek friendships from a place of rejection or seeking acceptance, you seek friends who are at the same level or higher level than you, people who know who they are in Christ Jesus, not attention seekers. You no longer seek relationships with people who you just want to use to fulfill needs and voids in your heart, or relationships involving taking without giving, or people who bring dysfunction into your life; but now you seek healthy relationships with a person who is submitted to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. When you are whole, healed, and firmly rooted in God, you no longer seek friendships and relationships from a worldly perspective, you go to God’s Word to be guided on how to approach such situations. You realize that you would rather be single than sin with a person just to secure a relationship. You realize that if you are not equally yoked with that friend, then you can go nowhere together because you are not in agreement.

Do not try to convince people that they should be your friends. Do not keep friendships with people who are leading you into sin; people who are living a sinful lifestyle. Do not try to prove your loyalty or love to another person by sinning; love never leads someone into sin. Do not try to hold onto people who neither love you nor love God, people who are mistreating you and demeaning you. Never agree to be married to someone who is not a born-again Christ-following believer. Do not entertain friendships with people who you know that they do not fear God. It is better to walk alone than be with people who are leading you away from God. Do not be in agreement with people who are carnal, who have no regard for righteousness and holiness. Take your stand, decide to live for God and obey His commandments, and with time, He will bring people into your life who fear Him and who will love you with the love of God.

“Do not be unequally yoked together with unbelievers. For what fellowship has righteousness with lawlessness? And what communion has light with darkness? And what accord has Christ with Belial? Or what part has a believer with an unbeliever? And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘ I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people'” 2 Corinthians 6:14-16.