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Friday, March 30, 2012

Your latter shall greatly increase



Yesterday was my birthday. I am sure our dear  Nike Oshinowo (once crowned Most Beautiful Girl in Nigeria) will allow me borrow from her fitness DVD title and proclaim that I am truly over –Forty, Fit and Fabulous! God is awesome and today I share with you in an open expression of my gratitude for His faithfulness in my life. Yesterday was simply an incredible day – I dare say it marked my ‘best-est’ birthday ever. My family blessed me with an amazing diamond-studded wristwatch..... and I tell you what? Even though I’m not one who really cares for bling (especially of the expensive sort), I’m sure loving these sparkles on my wrist, lol. My sweetheart also gave me the most beautiful flower bouquet ever (courtesy of Garden Aesthetics. Great job Inyang!). And here’s the best part, he presented them to me on his knees, telling me I was so well worth celebrating and once again how grateful he is to God for bringing me to him. Wow! He had me right there girl! He truly just hit the spot ....right at the centre of my heart, once again. This is the stuff that life is really made of!


Above and beyond all prior birthdays, I received an avalanche of goodwill calls, text/BB messages and emails yesterday from all corners of the globe, with a few more coming in today belatedly. I was blessed to hear from people I hadn’t spoken to in forever - friends in Nigeria, Canada, UK, USA, Sweden, South Africa....   I had an entire unit of my Bank call me and individual members of the team wish me HBD and pray over me. There was just such an overwhelming outpouring of love and appreciation and in return I just want to appreciate everyone who reached out to me, and as many who on reading this will say a silent prayer for me.


Forgive me for going on a bit about yesterday, but I have to tell it to the end. Hubby had asked that I bring the children out so we could have a nice family dinner together. Only for me to arrive and he had arranged a surprise dinner with some family and friends  - the people whom he knew I truly love and treasure so much. I was totally clueless up to that point and needless to say, my eyes filled with tears of joy. I salute this wonderful man of mine, and I salute the precious people who love me enough to have given of their time once again in honour of me  - despite it being a work day; despite the maddening Lagos Friday traffic; despite the distance from their homes/places of work. I love and appreciate each and every one of you. The Lord Himself will always come through for you IJMN, Amen.


I simply couldn’t sleep last night. At the end of it all, there was need for intense reflection and that’s really what I want to share with you today. I thought about the fact that the Lord spoke one thing consistently to me through different people yesterday, a Word about this being the beginning of the best years of my life. From my quiet time, to an early morning radio ministration I listen to everyday; the reference directly or indirectly was to Job 8 v 7:  ‘And though your beginning was small, yet your latter end shall greatly increase’. As I meditated over the words that were spoken into and over my life yesterday, I found myself pondering once again the import of this piece of Scripture. Questions to self for me were ‘What are my measures of increase?’ and ‘What are the things that for me will clearly indicate that the Word of God is being made manifest in my life?’


The measures of increase as the world sees them are clear - the material things we have; the positions we attain; the people in our circle; our social standing, etc. Measures of increase by the world’s standards are those things that Solomon referred to as vanities; they are those nice-to-have/achieves which, not handled properly, can cause us to absolutely lose focus and turn away from the full service of God.


From a Christian point of view however, I am convinced that the only measures of increase that truly count are our salvation first; and then how we are growing in our daily walk with God. Everything else just pales in comparison and, this is an indisputable fact! So on this my birthday, my pondering ultimately led me to a self-assessment on where I am with God. Have I attained the highest level in my relationship with God? Clearly not! I sure am not still drinking spiritual milk, but even I can question myself as to what level of spiritual meat I am eating.


Sis, you will never get to a place in your relationship with God where you have ‘arrived’; there is always room for growth. God promises to move us from one level of glory in Him to the next. His Word is a constant refreshing for our souls. No matter how much of the Word we have read or stored in our hearts, it is new for every situation and there is always fresh revelation. We can never praise enough; worship enough; or study/ fellowship enough to bring us to a place where we are at our peak in our relationship with God.   I see this as the beauty of our walk with God and at the same time, it is also the greatest challenge – a challenge because if we are not careful, we become so focused on how far we yet have to go, that we lose sight of how far we have come in Him. The enemy is also always lurking by, trying to release such a heavy weight of condemnation on you that you eventually slink away from God.


I want to encourage you today to keep your eyes set on the mark, literally! No matter how many times you slip and fall, please get up and begin from where you are. For every new beginning, for every fresh step, He makes a way for you. Don’t let the enemy take a hold of your mind and convince you that you are not good enough, clean enough, or spiritual enough to come before God. Rather stay focused on being in His presence, under the cover of His righteousness and the Lord will receive you for sure. He is mercy and grace personified!  


One thing I know for sure, God sees the heart. He discerns the thoughts and intents of the heart remember? Once you choose to remain in His stead, you make yourself available to grow in Him. In this I assure you sis, as you choose to stay in His presence and to be led of His Spirit, then for the measure of increase that is truly absolute – your walk with Him; each time you look back, you will definitely see that where you are is greater than where you used to be. I celebrate you today my sister. I declare IJMN that each day shall again mark the beginning of the best years of your life.


Because the Word of God shall not return to Him void but shall accomplish the purpose for which it was sent, today I celebrate your journey of growth. I celebrate the sure increase that will be your portion IJMN.


Be blessed sis, because you are blessed!


   

2 comments:

  1. Happy Birthday and may his Goodness, Joy and favor be new every morning.

    ReplyDelete
  2. HBD sister, very belated but be sure it comes with best wishes! A latter increase is definitely worth lookin forward to.In ur writing, u had me at measures of increase.....suffice to say dis was food for thot for a whole week! Again, wonderful.
    Ndidi

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to share you thoughts. You are loved and appreciated.

About Me

Entrepreneur, Mentor, Wife, Mother, Sister, Friend. A firm believer in God. Walking in faith everyday that by His grace, I will achieve harmony in all areas of my life, and make measurable impact in the lives of other women of the world

WORD FOR THE WEEK

LUKE 1:

34“-How can this be, Mary asked the angel, “since I am a virgin?” 35The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the Holy One to be born will be called the Son of God

JEREMIAH 2:

5 Before I formed you in the womb I knew [and] approved of you [as My chosen instrument], and before you were born I separated and set you apart, consecrating you; [and] I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.

6 Then said I, Ah, Lord God! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am only a youth. 7 But the Lord said to me, Say not, I am only a youth; for you shall go to all to whom I shall send you, and whatever I command you, you shall speak.

8 Be not afraid of them [their faces], for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord. 9 Then the Lord put forth His hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said to me, Behold, I have put My words in your mouth. 10 See, I have this day appointed you to the oversight of the nations and of the kingdoms to root out and pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.

1st CORINTHIANS 1:

25 [This is] because the foolish thing [that has its source in] God is wiser than men, and the weak thing [that springs] from God is stronger than men. 26 For [simply] consider your own call, brethren; not many [of you were considered to be] wise according to human estimates and standards, not many influential and powerful, not many of high and noble birth. 27 [No] for God selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is foolish to put the wise to shame, and what the world calls weak to put the strong to shame. 28 And God also selected (deliberately chose) what in the world is lowborn and insignificant and branded and treated with contempt, even the things that are nothing, that He might depose and bring to nothing the things that are,

Colossians 1:

28 Him we preach and proclaim, warning and admonishing everyone and instructing everyone in all wisdom (comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God), that we may present every person mature (full-grown, fully initiated, complete, and perfect) in Christ (the Anointed One).

29 For this I labor [[z]unto weariness], striving with all the superhuman energy which He so mightily enkindles and works within me.