Friday, 20 July 2018

Managing Success – Attitude

I checked the English dictionary for the word “attitude” and the Oxford dictionary describes it as “a settled way of thinking”. Of course, a way of thinking is always a matter of choice; one has to choose to settle in it. I honestly do not know if success by itself really impacts on our attitude or it just exposes what is already there, as I am inclined to believe. I believe very much that people with bad attitude are often exposed when success happens because success gives an unreal kind of confidence that makes one feel like they can do whatever they feel like doing and get away with it. It is often a previously settled way of thinking regarding life that is exposed when one begins to walk in this promised life; but an attitude which we can allow the Word of God alter. What is interesting is that we are sometimes a little hasty so we perceive ourselves as successful just a little before the success and then expose our ugly mindset a little too early. This has cost some dearly. One of the principal things God desires for us is that we allow His word alter our thoughts, attitudes and/or perception of life so that our settled way thoughts or attitude on anything would be based on His Word but we struggle with that.
Romans 12: 2a “Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.”

The problem with having the wrong attitude of mind is that it can truncate one’s success story. Naturally, life throws things at us that may attempt to bring us down but at the end of the day, they fail except we allow them. There are times in the life of the believer when it seems like the devil has succeeded in bringing them down but it not so: it is instead an experience allowed by God to further lift the believer. Therein lies the unexplainable wisdom of The God whose thoughts are far from ours. Whilst it is true that the devil works assiduously to destroy the believer, what is even more true is that he fails as often as he does; but the one enemy who can bring the believer down easily is the enemy within and bad attitude is one such enemy hence God in His wisdom counsels that we see through His eyes which is through His word, that we may succeed and remain successful notwithstanding what we may be going through. Success does not mean we won’t “go through” challenges but we will always “come through” and God will be in it all with us.

Psalm 23: 4 “Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.”

Isaiah 55: 8 “My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts, says The Lord. And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.”

Saul, unlike David, saw office and power as something to be grabbed or hold on to. David understood that it was given to him freely by The One who had the authority to give it to any who He chose to give it to and so He sort to please The Owner instead of grabbing power. Anytime we forget that we are not self-made, we get carried away and our attitude becomes very offensive. If we must be successful consistently and in increasing measures, then we must watch our attitude and ensure that it aligns we the thoughts of Him from whom all success comes. Nothing is worth holding unto except our faith in God through Jesus Christ his son. Our “attitude” or perception toward anything in life is always a reflection of our relationship with God. It doesn’t matter how spiritual or godly we may think we are, our true state is always displayed in our attitude. Our interpretation of any situation or circumstance is always impacted by our belief system. If for example one thinks of themselves as “more equal than others” then there is certainly a problem with their relationship with God. Isaac was so well taught that even after his father died and the Philistines kept striving with him over wells he dug, he just left them and dug another. His attitude toward “things” was right and God blessed him. We must fill our minds with the right things that we may think the right thoughts. This also has to do with the people we “hang out with.” We have to be deliberate about choosing the right company. Jesus Christ had the right attitude of mind even before He came down to earth and remains successful even today.

Philippians 2: 6 “Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.”

Friday, 6 July 2018


True success is from God; and through He whom all things are made and in whom they all consist – Jesus Christ.  This is the lasting, all-encompassing success which does not come with sorrow. God is the only source of true success. I am by no means suggesting that a successful person is one who doesn’t face challenges; but God is not only with every such person through every challenge but also brings them through to a better place and causes every experience to work good for them. Life will always throw challenges but God’s people come through. One of the most important things in life is to have a knowing that we own nothing. We came into this world with nothing and will leave everything behind when we leave so success is not success until it facilitates our success in eternity. The life we live here must prepare us to live a good life hereafter so we do not want success by all means because we know that the end does not justify the means; true success begins with the means. It is of utmost importance that we all as believers are very mindful of this truth. The assumption that “the means” isn’t so important is a fallacy that is weakening the church at least in my Country, making us less impactful. It would appear that our “means” have left us very handicapped.

Romans 8: 28 “And we know that God causes everything to work everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”

Psalm 23: 4 “Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me.

If we understand that success is from God, then we would not struggle to hold unto to it. It is needless and vain to wickedly fight to hold unto or perpetuate it down family line. Some believers get so desperate to perpetuate success down their family lines, they wreck the lives of their children and still end up unable to do so. The only way to achieve this with God given success is to ensure that one passes down the very same principles that got you there; those are the most important things. Everything that comes from God starts from the spiritual. We must do all to ensure that our success is not allowed to compromise our relationship with God because it has a way of taking on its own life and attempting to mislead the successful. Sometimes, it is wise to write down the things we must not forget to do before we get there especially since we know that success is definitely our portion. The earlier we make decisions regarding what must not be compromised, the better for us. That way, success is tamed and will fail when it attempts to take on a life of its own. It is so easy to forget the basic things that took us there when success is allowed to take charge. We must be controlled in all things.

Hebrews 11: 3b “what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen.”

Proverbs 16: 25 “There is a path before each person that seems right but it ends in death.”

King Saul is for us, an example of a man who was misled by success. He did not start out hungry for power. Infact he was shy initially and even hid himself when he was elected at the general assembly: but after success, which he did not earn because it was purely a gift from God, he changed. He was so drowned by it that he even wanted to kill to ensure that his son became king after him. Such is the craftiness of untamed success and this could be some of the problem of today’s church in my Country. Could it be that success has craftily led us away from God and we don’t know it? Could it be that we moved away from Him so much that “the philistines” seem to be taking over land? Could it be that success met us ill prepared and as a result is drowning us? From what we see in the bible, sometimes our inability to deal and/or destroy the enemy is not so much for their strength but for our own weakness. Separation from God weakens the believer. We may not have carried our success well. Pride in anyone or form is terrible. Just as it does evil to the poor, it does even greater evil to the successful. How so presumptuous to assume that your son will be king just because He made you king. Pride does not lift anyone up. It just creates a false sense of lifting. All promotion comes from God who is also able to put down.

Psalms 75: 7 “It is God alone who judges; he decides who will rise and who will fall.”

Saturday, 30 June 2018


Our mindset is a major player in managing success. It is therefore important that we check our hearts frequently to ensure that the things hidden therein are not only appropriate, but also what we intend to store. They must be right thoughts; right because they align with the word of God. It is true though, that the enemy often suggest thoughts to us which must not be retained hence the need to check our hearts frequently so that we can very quickly identify, expunge and replace such thoughts with the right one. Just expunging wrong thoughts is not enough, we must be deliberate about having them replaced with the right thoughts. It is our job to ensure that we are always in control of what we think on; no one can do it for us. It is easy to assume that it is okay to think any thoughts since no one sees them but not only is that wrong because God sees them, but we also are the product of what we think on. At the end of the day, our thoughts are made manifest in our actions. They are not hidden even from man, forever. So we must be deliberate about ensuring that our thoughts concerning every issue are thoughts that will do us good and not bring us to shame or cause us to act disgracefully. Many believers have failed just because they thought of themselves a little higher than they should have.

Philippians 4: 8 “And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about the things that are excellent and worthy.”

Psalm 119: 9 “How can a young person stay pure? By obeying your word.”

Romans 12: 3 “…I give each of you this warning: Don’t think of you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us.”

It is of utmost importance that we do not wait until we become “successful” to begin to give great consideration to who we chose to be and how we desire to carry ourselves. Without a doubt, there is enough convincing revelation today that we are destined for greatness, so that success should not take us by surprise. We must therefore be prepared for it. It may be too late or cost much more to learn to manage success when you're already there. It is wise to cultivate the right attitude of mind whilst on the path to it so that what God meant for good to us remains so. We must bear in mind that all good and perfect gifts, including success, come from God. No doubt our participation is required for our God given blessings so I am by no means suggesting that we be lazy; but God sets the stage, empowers us to do what is required and then breathes upon that which we have done to make it successful. Just knowing this makes us a little more balanced helping to ensure that we return the glory to whom it rightly belongs - God. Of course there is always the other voice which always suggest that we take the glory but if we prepared our minds already, we will not be deceived or lured away by that voice. The gift actually belongs to the one who originated it and we are but stewards who will be required to give an account for the way we managed the gift. If we always remember that we are only stewards for the success, we will most likely deal correctly.

James 1: 12 “Whatever is good and perfect is a gift coming down to us from God our Father”

It is not wise to expend energy guarding all we have which we can never really guard. The Giver of all good gifts is the best watch man and is able to keep all that is committed to Him. We must do our part and then, let Him do His which leaves us with more strength enabling us to effectively guard our hearts which is our job to do. There is a real need for us to guard our hearts, even from ourselves, because our hearts truly determine the course of our hearts. Even our own thoughts may not be really helpful because our minds have the capacity for more evil than we know. Our propensity for evil is only tamed by the Word of God hence the need to store God’s word in our minds and think on them. What we allow to feed us will eventually determine how we end up with the success. God wants us to enjoy all the success that comes from Him so we must do all that enables us do that.

Jeremiah 17: 9 “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is.”

Proverbs 4: 23 “Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.”

Saturday, 2 June 2018


3 John 2AMP “Beloved, I pray that in every way you may succeed and prosper and be in good health (physically), just as (I know) your health prospers (spiritually)
There is no doubt that every believer is called to be successful. That one ultimately fails or succeeds in life has nothing to do with God anymore because He has equipped or endowed us with all we need to succeed. Let me say, that success means many different things to different people. If however, we go by the scripture above, then it involves every area of our lives. So we are certain that God’s plan is that we prosper in every area of life. It is therefore surprising to find that success is one of the things we struggle with as believers; well, in my own area of the world. Meanwhile, it should be one of those things we walk into easily and remain well grounded. In my opinion, it is a major struggle both with the highest of believers or the smallest amongst us. It is almost as though we never thought it would happen so we live unprepared for it. It is becoming so consistent for believers to handle success badly around here that it is beginning to look like when the devil realizes he can’t stop one from succeeding, he waits for you to succeed and watches for when (i.e. if) one gets so deceived that they are lured out of the will of God. It is so easy to point at people who are failing but the struggle is real and we must bring an awareness to this seeming reality so that we better prepare ourselves for that eventuality. If God’s word is real as we know that it is it, we shall all have good success.

James 1: 14 “Temptation comes from our own desires which entices us and drag us away.”

Romans 12: 3 “Because of the privilege and authority God has given me, I give each of you this warning. Don’t think you are better than you really are. Be honest in your evaluation of yourselves, measuring yourselves by the faith God has given us.”

I recall that I once heard Bishop Jakes talk about how tough it is managing success well; it was indeed an opener. As I pondered on that sermon, it became even clearer to me that since success is bound to happen to believers, we should prepare for it as we prepare for every other thing that we expect to happen to us. We do all sorts of things including making financial investments just preparing for what we often refer to as “the rainy day” which we don’t really hope for, so we ought to be deliberate about preparing ourselves for success. It is very interesting to note that success as with several other things, can be deceptive otherwise, Adam and Eve, who in my opinion are the ultimate of success, would not have fallen for the trick of the enemy. They had everything they needed and more yet they were lured away by the desire for greater success. Surely, God never meant for us to be drowned in the success so there must be a few things we could do better. Please note that success here is not limited to money, success is success even if it is “success as a preacher” which is particularly interesting because the work is in truth, done by the Holy Spirit but if we are misled, we tend of think of ourselves a little higher than we should.

Ecclesiastes 5: 19 “And it is a good thing to receive wealth from God and the good health to enjoy it. To enjoy your work and accept your lot in life-this is indeed a gift from God,”

Ecclesiastes 1: 9 - 10 “History merely repeats itself. It has all been done before. Nothing under the sun is truly new. Sometimes people say ‘here is something new! But actually it is old, nothing is ever truly new.

In preparing ourselves, we have a host of witness, even in the bible, to look to. Some who failed because they were successful; and others who remained successful to the end. Maybe also those who never succeeded; perchance we may learn from them, some things we should never do. We shall together look at some such people from the scriptures in the next few blogs. Please remember, there is no height of success that has never been experienced before now. Whatever we see today, was; and will also be. There is indeed nothing new under the sun so we really ought to be calm but more often than not, we aren’t. Also, if we truly believe that all we are and have belong to God, which is something we say often, then it is easy to remain unmoved by all that God allows us enjoy because we are well aware of the fact that we remain stewards because we own nothing. Of course, a good steward is first partaker of the fruits but they don’t get carried away with them. The effort that God puts into preparing us to be good stewards for all He places in our care reveals the importance He attaches to good stewardship. It is important that we do not fail.

Friday, 25 May 2018

Jesus Christ - The Health Of Our Countenance!

Jeremiah 8: 22 “Is there no medicine in Gilead? Is there no physician? Why is there no healing for the wounds of my people?

I found out recently that a number of people there are who believe that once saved, nothing bad should come their way. It is their firm belief that God keeps everything bad from believers so that their lives should be some form of a dream in which everything goes the way it ought to. For such people, if anything goes in a direction they think it shouldn’t or out of the script they wrote for themselves (God’s will notwithstanding), it would mean that something bad which is capable of negatively impacting them forever has happened. Such people are hit very hard when faced with challenges. They struggle with processing difficult moments because they don’t even know how to turn it over to God since they made up their minds that bad things should not be happening to them “in Christ”. They become bitter and disappointed in or frustrated at God and refuse to accept that they need to adjust their expectations making it better aligned with the word of God. This is a real problem amongst us and some of the reasons the number of depressed believers is increasing. If we don’t deal with this now, we will shortly start having problems of great proportions which we don’t need.

Psalm 43: 5 “Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise him again-my Savior and my God.”

I understand that there are some things we don’t like to talk about and even more so in Africa where I reside. Some believers will not even mention a challenging physical health problem because they are convinced that to be sick suggests their relationship with God is not as it should be and they would hate for people to even think so because everyone wants to be seen as having the best relationship with God, reality not withstanding. With mental health, it is even worse. Whilst it is true that we ought not to suffer from these things especially mental health challenges, we do and God knew that we would so He already made provision for our healing as well as tell us how we can prevent it from happening: and all of this is hidden in His word. If heaven has not judged anyone disgusting for any illness, then there is no reason to be ashamed or embarrassed by a health situation; even more so when it is a resolvable one. These things would definitely be easier to deal with if we allow ourselves to be to one another, what and who we ought to be.  Life is full of highs and lows so we somehow need one another from time to time and to varying extents. God made it so for reasons He understand perfectly. If it was not best for us, I am certain He would have found a way to fix it.

Jeremiah 8: 8 – 9 “How can you say, we are wise because we have the word of the Lord. When your teachers have twisted it by writing lies? These wise teachers will fall into the trap pf their own foolishness, for they rejected the word of the Lord.”

Jeremiah 8: 10b – 12a “… yes even my prophets and priests are like that. They are all frauds. They offer superficial treatments for my people’s mortal wound. They give assurances of peace when there is no peace. Are they ashamed of these disgusting actions? Not at all-they don’t even know how to blush!”

Interestingly, the one place we have difficulties turning to for help in challenging times is the very place we don’t turn to - The Word of God. This is truth that most of us know yet we won’t turn look in God’s word because it seems too ordinary to deal with such huge problems. Also, it won’t talk to us like as a man would so we don’t see God revealed in it and consequently, do not see the power in it too. We would rather turn to men because it feels easier and more often than not, we are looking to the men to do something which God only can do. Meanwhile, these men dare not point us to God because we will consider them failures without “power or anointing” so a number of them would step into God’s place and try to do what they certainly cannot do so that the end is futility whilst more and more believers lose their minds. We must accept our reality which is that we have a God who though is not physically identifiable yet His existence is confirm by the nature and all that He made including man. I know that it is tough for us to trust one whom we don’t even see but it is what we have to do. To be a Christ follower, we must believe that “He is” and that we must do, even in the face of all that the world throws at us. We must tell ourselves the truth about our very selfish expectations. It is time to manage them differently.

Jeremiah 46: 11 – 12 “Go up to Gilead to get medicine, O virgin daughter of Egypt! But your many treatments will bring you no healing.”

Jeremiah 30: 17 “I will give you back your health and heal your wounds, says The Lord.”

It is indeed a wonderful thing to have a God like ours at a time like this - an ever present God. Christ presence in any life is a privilege with great benefits; but only those who access these benefits will enjoy them. To do that, we have to give ourselves to studying the word and with open minds because The Word we read is not enough, it is the word we let into our lives that makes a difference.  In these perilous times, there is nothing we need more than God’s word; for therein is our strength. Every Word we understand or is revealed to us, is accompanied with power to do what the word says because He who reveals The Word, will always make available, the power to do the word. The darker the world gets, the more we need Jesus Christ the Son of God (The Word of God) who will guide our decision making so that we are able to make decisions that further facilitate the enforcing of our victory.  We cannot afford to let life determine our stability; our God alone will be allowed to do that.

Jeremiah 29: 11 “For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

Friday, 11 May 2018

Job – A Life Filled With Lessons For Every Believer PT 2

I was listening to a sermon online recently where the preacher, Bishop TD Jakes, asked this question “are you willing to suffer a little to get to the next level?” My answer was, I am not. I love “the next level” which is like a cliché amongst believers where I live and about which we get excited even when we remain on the same level. Going to the “next level” is an enduring dream for believers around here. This should not be strange though, since the bible talks about us going from glory to glory, shining brighter and brighter and so on; consequently, there is no doubt that God’s working in our lives is not only continuous but takes us higher and higher. He doesn’t start and complete everything He promised us in one day. So, we are consistently getting better in every area of life. We should therefore be making quantifiable progress in every area of life. So that people can see and testify to God’s goodness in our lives. I am convinced, that with God, there is always an outward evidence of any development going on inside of us. God wants men to see it and give Him glory. Of course, not often from the very beginning because there is always the period when “God is digging downward in us ensuring that our roots go even deeper; deep enough to carry the next level of His goodness. At this stage, there is no outward display so God is working “secretly” to facilitate our readiness.
3 John 1: 2 “Beloved, I pray that in every way you may succeed and prosper and be in good health (physically), just as (I know) your soul prospers (spiritually).

So the problem is not with the next level, we love God’s next level, it is always with God’s method of getting us there which is made worse by the fact that He does not warn people around us to pay attention to what they say about what we may be going through because He is the one at work. So whilst one is dealing with the pain and inner turmoil, they also deal with lying tongues, strange counsel and scornful looks which are all part of satan’s package to ensure that one aborts the process. He knows that if he succeeds with getting one to abort the process, he has succeeded in facilitating their separation from God unto sorrow or depression and loneliness. Job was obviously a man greatly blessed of God who was sensitive to God’s methods and did not want to have any of those painful experiences so, he ensured that he had no sin at and that his children’s sins were also forgiven. He was so careful that he covered sins that may be committed. He definitely did not want to offend God preferring to avoid the painful experiences which he had assumed were only a product of sin not realizing that at a certain level, one was bound to have those experiences; those ones that make one wonder if God is still with them.

2 Corinthians 4: 17 – 18 “For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we see now; we fix our gaze n things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.”

James 1: 2 “…when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.”

We are aware that God does not do evil. So we know that these experiences are instigated by our enemy, satan, who hopes to destroy us via the experience but God who knows that the victory is won and we are well equipped to enforce it coming through the experiences to “ a wealthy place” just like Job did. Job went through what may have seemed like the worst of the worst but he came out to a very wealthy place. Jesus Christ, when He died, seemed like a lost case because he was even buried; yet He came up again. The joke is always on the enemy who expects us to drown in his river of pain but again and again we keep surviving. Job thought his end had come but it was just an inconvenience that preceded another level of joy. Whilst we obviously may not like the suffering, it happens and often without warning. I believe very firmly that God bears with us at times like this knowing how tough it is for us, but we must be careful not to ruin everything with our words. As God watches over us closely, providing all the needed support in these tough times, He steps in like He did for Job, just when think it is all taking a turn for the worst. Until we go to glory, there will always be a next level and God’s plan is for us to get there. It will be sad if a believer lived their entire life only talking about the next level whilst remaining on the same level. Much as we hate the pain often associated with going on to the next level, our desire to keep going higher must outweigh the hate. Unlike Job who in his difficulty did not know he would come through, God has done more than enough to let us know that we would; and that the joy which awaits us outweighs the pain and glory will be returned to God who deserves it all.

James 1: 12 “God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward, they will received the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.”

Saturday, 5 May 2018

Job – A Life Filled With Lessons For Every Believer PT 1

Some stories I hear make life feel really tough. Interestingly, life gets worse. When I was much younger, I wondered what the book of Job was all about. I didn’t understand it no matter how many times I read it. Neither did I see its relevance in the bible. I thought it was not of benefit to anyone. As I have gotten older and increased in my understanding of the story, I realize that God certainly allowed it and for obvious reasons. It is indeed instructive for understanding the dynamics of life. In a very simply way, it summarizes the life that many believers would live at one point or the other. There is no doubt that it is meant to be read and understood especially by a people who have been called to live on earth, as sheep in the midst of wolves which can’t happen without the wolves troubling the sheep. Wolves always are described as evil even in children’s cartoon. In asking us to live in the midst of wolves, the stage is set for us to be troubled though we are always overcomers and never victims. The “troubles” don’t determine who we are, God who already won the victory, determines that. He called us sheep and instructs us to remain sheep in the face of all the difficulties or challenges we may face.

Mathew 10: 16 “Look, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves. So be as shrewd as snakes and harmless as doves.”

2 Timothy 3: 12 “Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.”

Job’s story typifies the life of a believer, encouraging us to hold on whilst reminding us that inspite of the extent of one’s difficulty or depth of pain, it will pass. I don’t think it gets worse than what Job went through. His story prepares one for life as a believer. Dealing with life is not taught in schools, not even in bible schools, but God uses different methods to prepare us and Job’s story is one of them. I don’t doubt that no one can ever be fully prepared to face life’s challenges but it helps to know that there is no challenge new to humanity and that every challenge has an end. It is so much easier to hold on knowing that despite the apparent weight of the challenge, God has not permitted it to destroy one but to release them to greater glory. We cannot allow life dictate who we are. We are sheep and empowered to reign despite the presence of an evil one whose only job is to trouble mankind (believers and unbelievers alike). He knows not how to do well and if he appears to do well, it is a trap. His thoughts toward us, unlike God’s thoughts, are only evil so that as soon as he was allowed to touch Job, he did all he knew to do – steal, kill and destroy. Don’t give up in that your situation; there is an end to it.

1 Peter 5: 8 “Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.”

There is no doubt that Job was used to living well and enjoyed the honor and accolades he got from the people around him. Yet God allowed him lose even that alongside all he had. No wonder he pondered why God won’t take his life. It didn’t make sense to him anymore to be left on earth. Everything seemed meaningless and God was silent, not offering any explanations. Who would have thought He was actually rooting for Job all that time. Heaven held him in high esteem though men looked down on him. While he was treated with disdain on earth, he was accomplishing God’s purpose. No wonder it is not wise to judge one’s worth by how much men value them. Who would have known that God cared so much He was apparently watching over the entire situation carefully to ensure that Job would not only remain sheep but would be greater than he ever imagined. It is easy to take for granted that God is not with anyone going through difficulties but it is not always so. God sometimes works in unexplainable ways to work wonders. He knows how to bring us out of “it” just in time and who knows, He may be working another wonder in your life

Romans 8: 28 “…all thing work together for good to them that love God who are the called according to his purpose.”

1 Corinthians 10: 13 “The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.”