Follow by Email

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Make it happen

Over the past couple of weeks, I have operated in a constant haze of thankfulness, marveling at the faithfulness of God in so many areas of my life and one in particular this period. What is it you ask? Hmmm!Well sis my second book 'Double Impact' is going through the final design stage prior to going to press. It is a wonder to me that I should have two books out within the space of a few months. Only God sis, only God!

More than the fact of this being my second book though, I have been on a praise high because in the course of the final reviews, my publisher kept calling me to say what a great book it is, how much she is learning from it, and how excited she is about the impact she expects the book to make on couples that work together. Double Impact is based on my almost 20year working relationship with my husband and contains principles and strategies that I believe have helped us continue to have great relationships both in the office and at home all these many years. My husband himself had traveled with a copy of the manuscript and when he came back, he pulled me into a very tight embrace, told me how proud he was of me and then began to rave about the book. When he was done, I could only but stare at him in silent awe, tears of joy and gratitude coursing down my face. I mean, how much more validation could there be, than that the other half of the story himself has been impacted so greatly by the book? Wow! Lord, I'm so grateful.

As my publisher (my very precious sista-sista Bidemi Mark-Mordi of Verbatim Communications Limited) and I reviewed the cover designs a few days ago, I found myself reflecting over the journey to the reality that is now the book 'Double Impact'. A few things ministered to me and these I will share with you today.

First is that God has put gifts talents and abilities within each and every one of us, by the very breath of life that He gave to us. The breath of life is an impartation of the Spirit and nature of God, and each of us is well able to do exploits if we would only but make a move. God puts particular passions in us for a purpose. He orchestrates our life circumstances for a purpose. The simplest of things which we see as our norm, can actually be platforms that the Lord will use to touch lives around the world if we are willing, and if we stop taking the 'ordinary' around us for granted. Working with my husband was and continues to be my 'ordinary', my 'usual', my 'norm'. It was just what we did and do. From day to day, year to year, we have simply reveled in the fact that we love each other and love being together - be it at the office or at home. As the Lord began to open up opportunities for me to teach and speak on business and entrepreneurship some years back, I started to notice that somehow, no single session would end without the issue of how I have been able to work with my spouse all these years cropping up. In my many years of simply dreaming about writing a book, I somehow never made the connection until the one morning - after a particularly intense class discussion the day before on the issue of couples working together; when the Lord woke me up and gave me clarity on what His assignment for me was.

Yes sis, the Lord showed me that there was a great big message within the 'norm' of my life. So my first question to you today is: 'What is it in your life that you have continued to see as 'no big deal', but which the Holy Spirit continues to niggle you about?' There is surely that 'something' sis, there surely is. Sometimes we don't see the assignment clearly because it looks so ordinary as compared to the many other 'exciting' or 'dynamic' things we see everyone else around us being/doing/achieving. Take time out to pray and reflect and ask the Lord to show you the greatness that is already around and within you sis. Open your heart to hear and receive from the Lord, and if He hasn't already, He will surely show you sis. If He has sis, then its time you worked your assignment to the full!

Secondly, you must make a move. No matter how long you talk about what it is that you want to do, you must make a move sis. I talked for well over a year about the fact that I was going to write a book about couples working together. I talked and talked until the day I realized I was being hypocritical unto myself, knowing full well that I hadn't put as much as a dot on a page anywhere. That day, I forced myself to sit down and write out an outline. Nothing came readily to mind so I spent some time in prayer, in praise and in worship. In the quietness that followed from there, the Lord began to drop things in my spirit and a couple of hours later, I had not just an outline of chapters, but clearly written down statements of what I expected each chapter to address. Make a move sis! Just talking or thinking about something will not birth it into existence. We are not God! It is only He that speaks and it is done. His commandment to us is to go ye and 'do' this or that. He is the One that said we should mix our faith with 'work' so that we can see the results that He has purposed. Do the work sis, make a move and watch the Lord in His faithfulness magnify your efforts.

Third, commit to keeping on, regardless of how many times you stumble or how many times you stop. Don't give up! Keep picking yourself up and moving forward. As I have said before, we are all in this marathon of life for ourselves, and not in competition with anyone else. What this means is that even if you sometimes get tired, sit on the track; whatever else you so, don't get off it. Stay on the track sis, and keep the prize in view. Even where you can’t see the finish line, move forward! When you don't have the energy to run then walk, or at least get on all fours and crawl forward. If you can though, jog for a bit. And when you feel that burst of energy, sprint! The collective result of your crawling, walking, jogging and sprinting efforts will all add up to one thing - movement in the forward direction, progress on the track. As long as you are still on the track and in this mental/psychological and emotional frame, the finish line is yet closer than before.

I can tell you that there were times when for months on end I wouldn't write a single line. I kept talking about the book though, and each time I opened up my documents folder, there it was staring at me. There were times when all I could do was go back to refine what I had already written before, and that was fine because that was a kind of progress. There were those times when I would open the manuscript, type three or four lines, then stare at it blankly, sigh and shut it down; mentally reminding myself that four extra lines was progress nonetheless, albeit minimal. There were then also those other times when I approached the writing with a tenacity that impressed even me, lol. The sum total of all this, one day I typed the final full-stop and the book was done. It has taken me five years from the day the Lord dropped the concept in my heart, but sis... my 'ordinary' is today a book that the Lord will surely use to minister to and bless countless couples around the world. Don't give up sis! That you haven't touched that project in months or years is not reason enough to let it die. Remember that it is an assignment from your Maker and He will hold you accountable to it. Don't give up! Do something! Move! Make it happen! The Lord Who is your strength and Who birthed the vision in you, is more than able to help you sis. He will strengthen and empower you, and He will help you see it to the end if you keep your eyes on Him.

Lastly, I want to encourage you today by saying that the things that the Lord put in your heart to do are usually quite big and sometimes pretty scary, especially in the space of your everyday reality and in view of what you might see as the ordinariness of your existence. But sis, that is exactly why the glory for the end result goes to God. That is why we need to look to Him alone to bring it to pass. God-sized visions require God to bring them to pass. Stop looking at what you are 'able' to do, for you are truly able to do absolutely nothing. Take the fear, the uncertainty, and the ordinary that you have and place them at His feet sis. Ask Him to work through you to bring the vision to pass. Ask Him to open your eyes to see, your ears to hear, to show you the connections and resources that He has already made available for you to make birth the dream. You can make your dream happen sis, you can! Certainly not in your strength, but in total submission and in full partnership with the God Who is your Source. Take your eyes off what the next person is doing sis. Work your stuff! It is the same God that we all serve. It is the same breath that He breathed into us all. Whether He has given you one talent or many, work it sis! Work it!

I speak over your life today and ask that The Lord will touch you even through something I have said today, and cause you to go back to the dream that He has put in you. I pray that by the power of the Holy Spirit, you will fulfill every assignment that the Lord has given unto you. I pray that the Lord Who gives us visions in the night, Who fills our minds with witty inventions, that He will speak to you mightily once again concerning your assignment(s). I pray that the One Who orders our steps and illuminates our paths, will show you the next steps to take on this journey. I pray that as you make a fresh commitment in your heart to see your assignment to the end, the Lord will also steadfastly help you stay on track. I pray that He will help you keep the prize in mind, so that regardless of the pace, you will keep moving nonetheless. I pray that as you commit to make your assignment happen sis, that the Lord will reward your efforts and walk you into the completion, for the praise and glory of His name. I am so looking forward to sharing in your testimony in the very near future. The Lord will help you sis, even as He has certainly helped and will continue to help me.


Be blessed sis...for you surely are!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Understanding His will 3

When I shared the questions asked of me regarding the will of God, I really didnt have a clear sense of how many responses would come in, but I knew without a shadow of a doubt that the Lord would speak. I shared a couple of responses that touched me last week, and today I bring you a couple more. I have not been opportuned to meet with the young lady who asked the questions in the first place, but I remain committed to sharing the things that the LOrd will speak through that interaction when it takes place. As you read the responses below, allow the Lord minister to you regarding His will.


"Most times our own will has selfish ways encompassed in it. God’s ways are to bring Him glory and usually have something to do with His people because His people are the most precious to Him. He created us from the very ground that He created. He gave us the ability to produce and create and He established that there was nothing we should do alone. He fashioned it that He selflessly gave His only son that we would have eternal life. I can't say that any father or mother for that matter would give their child to the world that they (others) may have eternal life. He always does something that is to better His people and meet them right where they are. This blog is a perfect example. That very question is asked probably daily by many when they think they are hearing their own voice instead of the Lord’s. It's very clear to me that when you whole heartedly give your life to Christ and accept Him as your personal savior that you are giving permission for God to invade your thoughts and plans. His plan will be revealed and when you do things in your own will, you know as opposed to doing them in the will of God. There is a profound difference in doing on your own and doing in the strength of Christ. His will is that we may prosper in all that we do. We are mere beings who were created for a purpose and when we go outside of that which God has purposed us to do, I believe this is when we experience defeat and failure.
Now of course it all works out for our good, but usually once we have messed it up is when we go back to God and want to do it His way. I believe it was God actually asking this question of us all to see if we have matured to a place of recognizing that once we have given our lives to Him, that He is in control and that He is leading and directing. And for one to know that they are indeed hearing God and not your own thoughts, He will bring confirmation to you in some way and that is how you will know. Before this question was asked there were probably decisions and questions that were coming forth that led you to a place you thought that you should check to be sure that the voice you hear is not your own. My question is have you accepted Christ as your personal savior? If the answer is yes then you are hearing God and if you are not sure of the inner voice you do hear, God will surly bring it forth through another to confirm that you are not just waking this out in your own being.

The only way you will know Gods plans is if you ask Him as He it is who created you and He is the one Who has purposed the exact plans for you. It's truly a daily walk and I'd say it’s ok to keep asking. One of my mentors spoke to me recently and said if you don't hear God speaking anything new it's because He is still in the place of the last thing He spoke. Perhaps He gave you something to do and you didn't finish it or you went to someone else to see what it was that you were to do or perhaps you have now gone to someone because you don't hear God speaking. That's because you left Him in the last place and may need to go back to that space and reclaim whatever it is He have you to do.
I'm convinced that no one but God can tell you His plans. He can confirm through others but you will only know the plans He has for you if you ask Him. Again I must say that if you don't have a relationship with God that's the first step before asking Him to tell you what His plans are and if you are not sure then you should ask someone to help usher you into His kingdom so that you have security in the kingdom knowing that when all is passed away you have eternal life in His kingdom. Once you have done so and know, then what you do is ask God, ‘God what are your plans for me?’ Wait patiently. He will not give you the whole picture or answer. He will speak to you and you must listen. Once He has spoken He may bring confirmation to it through someone else but know that that is not the first that spoke it to you, it was in fact the voice of God. He may not speak aloud and that is why you have to listen carefully.

This has been such a joy to have an interactive blog/devotional. I know however that there is no right or wrong answer. I prayed about my answer and wanted to answer with what I felt God would have me tell someone who asked this very question. In fact I have been asked and I recall once telling someone that "you just know" can no longer be the answer as I know that this question is in fact an opportunity to usher someone into His kingdom. I read this on Saturday during my devotional and God did not allow me to answer until Sunday night as I went to reflect on my day. Then I arose this morning and added more as I thought about it even more while I slept. God is doing a new thing and I excited in knowing that the question is still being asked and that I was given opportunity to answer. Thank you for asking and reading our responses. I see that this blog is already going into a new direction and for that I am excited. Until the next question.   Blessings - SV"

 
When I read the first part of this post last week, I had a spontaneous response to the questions raised but I had a check in my spirit to wait. The following day in church, my Pastor preached on "Living a life pleasing unto God." Then I knew why I had to wait. His sermon provided more answers to your question. I spent the whole week ruminating on both the questions & the answers I had whilst looking for time to write them down and send to you. Reading today's post, I knew I still have to share my thoughts with you though now late. But first, here's what I found today written by Stormie Omartian:

How do you find the will of God for your life?
- Tell God you live to do His will. (Ephesians 6:5-6)
- Ask God for wisdom to help you understand what His will is. (Ephesians 5:17)
- Ask God to enable you to do His will. (Hebrews 13:20-21)
- Listen for God’s voice speaking to your heart. (Isaiah 30:21)
- Praise God and give thanks to Him for everything. (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
- Ask God to work His will in your life for His Glory. (Hebrews 12:2)


The key is, it’s His will. Go to Him.
My response to your question: Some years ago I heard a missionary in a movie say these words as he was dying: " there's no better place to be than in the center of God's will except in His presence." These words left an indelible mark on me. The ultimate goal of every Christian must be to please God in every sphere of our lives and in all our decision making. Any believer who seeks to live a life pleasing unto God must therefore be willing and ready to submit his/her will and plan to God. When our plans are in synch with God's will for us, we will have peace in our heart and not be disquieted.

Outside the will of God, we will struggle and labour much for less outcome. We therefore need to commit our plans to God and be willing to let go of them if we become agitated and have no peace in our hearts. It is God Who works in us both to will and to do of His good pleasure when we live our lives to please Him.
Congratulations on the release of your book. God bless you richly.   - IO "

Sis, I was particularly touched by these two responses. I know how many times in my personal walk that I would find myself questioning whether the voice I heard inside was the voice of God. By the grace and help of the Holy Spirit and as I have grown over the years, I have truly seen that the LOrd always sends confirmation of the things that He speaks to me, or at other times, He immediately counters the voice of doubt with a reassuring 'My Sheep know my voice'  which comes to me as clear as crystal, so I totally understand what SV has spoken. And if I will leave you with anything else today, it will be exactly as the Lord has spoken to us through IO: the key is, it’s His will... go to Him. I encourage you to stay in the place of trusting that the very One Who created you for His purpose, is more than able to teach, to guide, and to direct our lives according to His will for each and every one of

us.

May the Lord grant you and I fresh revelation of Him each and every day sis. This is my prayer for today and for always.
Be blessed.... for you surely are! 

Monday, September 2, 2013

Understanding His will 2

The past week has been pretty busy for me. It already feels like my vacation ended three months ago. But that is life isn’t it. In the real sense of it, we can never take long enough vacations from our realities. Life is always right there waiting for us, regardless of how many weeks of vacation we decide to take. I am grateful to God the assignment that He has given me on the mountain of business, for it is in the busyness of my days that I am working out my life’s purpose. The past week has also been a very exciting week for me. Not only did I finish my second book, but my first book ‘Uniquely Woman’ made its debut on Amazon(http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=Uniquely+Woman+by+Audrey+Joe-Ezigbo&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3AUniquely+Woman+by+Audrey+Joe-Ezigbo) in this same week. Truthfully, I’d be doing cartwheels out of excitement if I were a bit younger (err… not to mention several pounds lighter, cough cough). I have however chosen to content myself with constant songs of praise and lots of spontaneous dancing in gratitude to God for He alone deserves the glory. Thank you to each and every one of you, for indeed you are a big part of the success story of Uniquely Woman. I’m counting on you to help me make some noise about this book okay. Big hugs as you do.  

So, last week I shared with you some questions that were thrown at me concerning the will of God. I asked for responses and promised to share them on this forum. A couple of responses have really struck me very deeply and I will share these with you over the next couple of days and then eventually round up with my own thinking as I had said I would. The questions were: What is the difference between your will and God's will? How can you trust God when it seems you're the one making plans for yourself? How do you know God's plans for you?’ The responses? Here goes:

‘Hmmm! Certainly very deep questions. My will is working and planning according to World's standards. His will is subjecting my life and plans to Bible standards and ensuring that I am constantly speaking to God and having Him speak back to me to confirm or otherwise. And I know all this can only happen if I have a close relationship with Him and I'm therefore in constant communion with Him.’  - IY


‘Hmmm, some very meaty questions there and questions that I guess all of us have asked at one time or another. And as human beings, I guess will continue to ask until the day we are reunited with Christ and see and know perfectly. As a natural go-getter/organizer type person, I struggle with the idea of not sorting things out for myself and waiting on God is often the hardest thing for me to do. However, I've discovered that waiting on Him is absolutely the right thing to do. Not waiting fatalistically, but actively- reminding myself of the times He's come through for me in the past. Remembering His Word and going back to it as often as I need to. But also, taking at least a step towards what I want to do. I think we need to let go of the picture in our head, that God is an ogre Who's just waiting for us to fail. He's not like that at all. If we're going the wrong way, He will tell us (in my experience anyway). As for knowing His will, my advice is, if it doesn't line up with His Word, then it can't be His will. His Word, His Names and His Will are all congruent. Practice listening all the time and you'll get better at discerning His voice, from the myriad we hear every day.                                                      –  FJ     http://www.b2bbeautiful.blogspot.com


‘I have been thinking of your post since I read it yesterday. I actually wanted to reply right away but God halted me and told me to wait so that He would help me send a 'much better' reply. I am simple woman and I usually like things broken down for me like I am a 2 year old and this is how I walk with God - with childlike faith cos adult sense and wisdom is just a blocker. 

SO HOW DO I KNOW GOD'S WILL? By first knowing what blocks it for me: MY OWN DESIRE and to be honest this is how you will also know the difference between your will and God's. Your will is what YOU want based on your own wisdom and understanding the situation. God's will is what HE wants for you which is always BETTER even if we don't see it that way at the time. Now, remember the garden on Eden? What made Eve eat the apple? Her desire to KNOW. When trying to get God's will for us, we have to ask for grace not to put OUR OWN desires over and above HIS, cos sometimes they won't match. We have to say, like Jesus, as he cried to God to take his cup away, ‘Lord, YOUR WILL be done, not mine!' Yes, usually very hard but always worth it in the end and when we have done this, and we meant it, then we can be sure that God will guide us into His will for us on that matter.

BUT HOW DO YOU KNOW YOU ARE WALKING IN GOD's WILL FOR SURE?
True, sometimes even after you have handed it all to God, 'self' still creeps in and tries to 'help'. The spirit of God immediately tells me I am 'trying' to help God. For any person in Christ, this voice is always speaking. Just that sometimes, we don't listen. You need to listen and when it speaks, you stop what you were thinking or about to do. Secondly, check the Word, what you are about to do? Does it go against anything God says you are or should not do? If it does, then it is not in God's will for you. God would never ask you to compromise your integrity; He will never ask you to 'fib or colour the story'. He will not ask  you to bribe or 'facilitate' to have His will done. God does not need your help to have His way in your life. He just needs your obedience and 1500% TRUST. 

This morning as I was praying and doing my devotional, God showed me why He wanted me to wait. Right there in my reading for today. This is what I read: 'Come in poverty of spirit to be led by the Spirit. 'Be not conformed to this world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable and perfect will of God'. You see, God is saying to us that His Spirit will teach a person with a TRANSFORMED AND RENEWED MIND AND LIFE that WANTS only to know God's perfect will. We first of all have to BE FULLY REBORN IN CHRIST AND DAILY RENEWING OUR MINDS VIA HIS WORD and then we have TO WANT TO KNOW God's perfect will for our lives ALL THE TIME. Not just in crisis or when facing a particularly stormy time or difficult situation. ALL THE TIME! The Spirit of God in us will teach is just like I said above but His voice will be muted if our minds are not renewed enough to hear or understand what He is saying. You and I know that the un-renewed mind of man and its wisdom is incapable of understanding God or His wisdom and where there is sin the light of God cannot shine into the heart to guide......  I just hope this helps you talk to this young lady.....And I pray God will open her heart and mind to receive all you share with her in Jesus name. Amen. Bless you Sis! 

P. S. One final tip, as a child of God, truly wanting to please Him, when we begin to do things in our wisdom, we get a check in our spirits and our peace begins to seep out of us.......I know this to be true personally.....either two things happen. You listen to the check and stop it. Days later something happens and you are like 'Lord, Thank You.....Thank You for not letting me do that, now I get it. OR You don't listen, and days later, you suffer the consequences and see how God was trying to save you from your current kwata''' (problem) and then you apologize and ask for mercy to get out of it......and God being Love....He always does                         - Salt    http://thesaltchronicles.blogspot.co.uk


Food for thought? No doubt! Tomorrow, we share another response that particularly moved me. I pray though that as you meditate on what you have read so far, the Lord Himself will minister something to your heart and help you in your walk, so that you will find yourself squarely in the center of His will always.

Be blessed…. for you surely are!







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.