What do you
see? I think this is a very important question to ask.
“Then he sent horses
and chariots and a strong force there. They went by night and surrounded the
city” Vs 14
“When the servant of
the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses
and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my Lord! What shall we do?” the
servant asked. Vs 15
“Don’t be afraid”, the
prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with
them”. Vs 16
And Elisha prayed,
“Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s
eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all
around Elisha. Vs 17 (2 kings 6: 14 – 17
I find the
above passage very interesting and insightful. It shows the reaction of 2 men
(Elisha and his servant) to the same scenario. One acting in fear and the other
in boldness and confidence. Why? One (Elisha) could see what the other (his
servant) could not see. Isn’t this similar to life issues? Elisha’s servant got
afraid, seeing an army marching out against two men, while Elisha was seeing a
greater army marching out against another army far smaller in size compared to
often times in life, it’s the same. We worry because we can’t see. Our two
eyeballs are open to the physical just like Elisha’s servant to see our
problems, challenges etc. But the eyes of our minds are not open to see the
numerous opportunities God has placed around us. What we see, determines how we
act. It’s essential we see well! The renewal of our minds which comes as a
result of our continuous walk and fellowship with the spirit brings about a
change of sight.
“The word of the LORD came to me, saying,
“Jeremiah, what do you see?” And I said, “I see the branch of an almond tree”
(Jer. 1:11 AMP)
“Then the LORD said to
me, “You have seen well, for I am [actively] watching over my word to fulfil
it” (Jer. 1:12 AMP)
Jeremiah, what do you see? He answered and God said you see well. My dear friends, looking at the major preoccupation
of your mind, if God was to ask “What do
you see?” would He be able to say to you, “YOU SEE WELL”? Do the things you see bring wellness to your soul?
Do they help you conform to God’s image more, or do they distort your view of
life and scriptures? I believe God was asking Jeremiah this, because for Him
and Jeremiah to walk together, they had to agree (Amos 3:3). They had to see
the same things. Sometimes the problem we have is, our minds don’t see what God
sees, so it’s difficult for us to walk in faith.
Jesus was to
heal a particular man, and this happened:
“Taking the blind man
by the hand, He led him out of the village; and after spitting on his eyes and
laying His hands on him, He asked him, “Do you see anything?” (Mark 8:23 AMP)
“And he looked up and
said, “I see people, but [they look] like trees, walking around” (Mark 8:24
“Then again Jesus laid
His hands on his eyes; and the man stared intently and [his sight] was
restored, and he began to see everything clearly. (Mark 8:25 AMP)
first prayer, notice the man could see, but he wasn’t seeing well. He saw
humans like trees. Jesus didn’t allow him to go. That would have been dangerous.
He could have pick up an axe and started hacking at people, or started leaning
on people. Notice Jesus called him and prayed for him again, until he saw
clearly. Let me add an important principle below.
Whatever we are experiencing in our
lives, is a result of what our gaze is fixed upon. If you notice you are worried, full
of anxiety, fears, and burdened about the future, check your gaze, you might
just be too focused on your problems and challenges and that has fuelled your
thoughts. If you are struggling with a particular sin, check the kind of videos
or songs you’ve been listening to, your gaze might just be on the wrong things.
Your gaze determines your personality. What you look upon determines what you
become. So if you want to see right, start looking at the right things. Fix
your gaze more upon the perfect law of liberty (the scriptures). Let it define
you, your life and your life principles, shut down every voice not from God
which speaking to you.
The issue of
sight is important, we know this because Jesus said:
“The light of the body
is the eye: therefore when your eye is single, your whole body also is full of
light; but when your eye is evil, your body is full of darkness” (Luke 11:34
me ask, what do you keep your gaze on? does it bring wellness to your soul? In
the book of Numbers 21:6 – 9, the children of Israel were healed by setting
their gaze upon the brazen serpent.
“So Moses made a
serpent of bronze and put it on the pole, and it happened that if a serpent had
bitten any man, when he looked to the bronze serpent, he lived” (Numbers 21:9
power is in what you look upon. Setting your gaze on the right things brings
life. By looking on Christ, who he is and what He has done for us, we are
changed. Our soul receives life. We are transformed from who we used to be to
who Christ is. And then our reactions are defined from that view point. We then
act no longer in fear but in courage and love. Paul counsels:
“Set your mind and keep
focused habitually on the things above [the heavenly things], not on things
that are on the earth [which have only temporal value]” (Col. 3:2 AMP)
gaze must be right. Despite our situations we must learn to see what He sees.
We must also learn to keep our gaze on Him to be like Him.
“But we all, with open
face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same
image from glory to glory, even as by the spirit of the Lord” (2 Cor. 3:18 KJV)
It is my
The eyes of
your understanding be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope of His
calling, and what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints.
And what Is the exceeding greatness of his power to us who believe, according
to the working of his mighty power which he wrought in Christ, when He raised
Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly place far
above all principality and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that
is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come.
Consider this a Faith Booster. Today, I want to share 2 things with you. First, God always completes whatever he starts. Secondly, I want to encourage you to, Get Knowledge!
This was an encouragement for me over the weekend, that our God is a finisher. He completes whatever he starts. “Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them” (Gen. 2:1).
Maybe you have started a project, and you are afraid about it how it’s going to be done, or its completion looks impossible to you, am here to announce to you that your father in Heaven, ALWAYS completes every project he starts and yours won’t be an exemption. Jesus, who is the express image of the father, did this on earth:
“How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with Power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him” Acts 10:38
He healed them ALL. I understand ALL not to mean, he healed everyone he healed COMPLETELY, wholly, without any trace of sickness or disease ever again. He finishes his work PERFECTLY. This should cause a Joy and rejoicing in our heart. Expect that if he is building it, he would complete it. He would complete His work of Salvation in us. Hallelujah! He is building His Church, and he would complete it! And His work is not haphazard, He would complete it perfectly. See this also,
“So shall my word be that goes forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” Isaiah 55:1
He will accomplish (Finish, complete) it. ALL of it because faithful Is HE who has promised who also would bring it to completion. See it also says;
Being Confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: (Phil. 1:6)
Read also 1 Thess. 5:23 -24, Numbers 23:19.
Now, to next thing, I want to challenge you, Get knowledge. God doesn’t want his sons and daughters to be ignorant. This is evident from the Progressive nature of revelation in the scriptures. He wants us to know. See this:
And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than six score thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and also much cattle? Jonah 4:11
The prophet Jonah, had just finished preaching in Nineveh, and what a great revival it was, causing the whole city (Jonah 3) to turn the Lord. If this had happened now in our days, we would rejoice and sing and dance. Yes, while this is right, it seemed that there was something else after their “turning to the Lord” on God’s mind, and its KNOWLEDGE! I believe this is the same today, after Salvation, Believers are to be taught, taught about what the rudiments of faith, about what happened to them at Salvation, about who they are, who God is to them now. We need to get knowledge!
Wisdom is the Principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all your getting get understanding. Proverbs 4:7
The church is a school of the spirit, not a place of celebration or fashion, dancing galore. It’s a school where we need to be taught so the eyes of our understanding may be enlightened. After getting saved, it’s not time to just jump into prosperity sermon and start claiming and claiming things from above. If we do that, we would remain spiritual babies all our lives. Our minds won’t be renewed. We would keep living in darkness which leads to death. We would live in fear of the elements of the world.
“And in this mountain shall the Lord of hosts make unto all people a feast of fat things, a feast of wines on the lees, of fat things full of marrow, of wines on the lees well refined.
And he will destroy in this mountain the face of the covering cast over all people, and the vail that is spread over all nations.
He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for the Lord hath spoken it” Isaiah 25: 6 – 8
I found the above passage, important to our present discuss. I understand the feast in verse 6 as a gathering of people to be taught through preaching so they have knowledge. Preaching which leads to the covering of the vail over their faces lifted in verse 7, connoting liberty and freedom from all kinds of fear and bondage. Which leads to verse 8, death destroyed, not just physical death but death (separation) in our souls, and the end of tears and sorrows. All coming through the Preaching! Getting Knowledge.
See this also, Isaiah 61. But I will only share here verse 1 – 3. You can read the rest by yourself.
“The spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound” vs 1 (Emphasis mine)
“To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the year of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;” vs 2
“To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified” vs 3
Notice from the first phrase in the first verse, he would preach and the next statements outlined the effects of him preaching. To preach means to make aware of, to bring to light, to reveal knowledge. The hearts of the broken-hearted would be healed, liberty to the captives, freedom, comfort, beauty for ashes, oil of joy, the garment of praise etc. This are desirable things that comes through knowledge. And I want to say ALETHEIA is committed to this.
It is noteworthy to add that God has designed the church learns through a chain reaction. Our learning is brought about by the service of our teachers who learnt also from some other men. We are to learn from churches and not be a lone-ranger, God gave us our local-assemblies to be spiritual schools. 1 Peter 2:2-3, Eph. 4: 11 – 15, 1 Cor. 14:20.
I want to encourage you, buy books, read books, listen to sermons, increase your knowledge base of the scriptures, it would set you free and bring rejoicing to your heart. Devote yourself to the study of the scriptures. You need it! Yes, you need it. You have been called to be a blessing to this generation, but how would you do that, if you don’t have knowledge.
My master’s level studies has given me the opportunity to meet a lot of people. One of them is Dr. Banky (Not his real name). I so much respect him. First of all, because of his advanced knowledge in Mathematics, being a Dr. of Mathematics from the department of Mathematics in my University is something I know didn’t come easy.
Dr. Banky is very organised and matured. You need to visit him at home or see his office to see that. There’s only a few mathematicians have met that seem to be well organized. I would say his influence and support has been very vital to get me to the present level I am in my Master’s. When I first arrived here, many things happened to me that made me doubt my ability to complete the program. I almost lost my self-confidence, thanks to a lot of counsels and support from esty-b (another friend that I value so much) and Dr. Banky. I think have been really blessed with the gift of people.
One important thing I must also say about him is, he dresses well. Truth be told, if you meet him randomly on the streets you wouldn’t know he is Doctor of Mathematics. I haven’t seen so many Mathematicians dress so well. He eats well and takes very good care of his health (unlike me), goes to the gym, so he looks really fit, and sure he is. There’s just a lot of things I really respect and like about this man. In-short he is one of my mentors and his counsels have been very helpful.
I have seen so many things in his life that I really want to emulate them and imbibe many of his cultures because I know they will be beneficial to me. A lot of them I have started already. we attend the same church here, I used to sit at his sitting position in church, I was so happy when one lady took me for him one Sunday. I thought I must be looking so much like him. I actually want to look like him. Imbibe many of his way of life. Follow him as he follows Christ. Looking at him do many of this things has actually made it easier for me to learn so many things that would have been difficult for me to learn on my own. And I must say, a lot of things has improved in me by watching him, including spurring me to academic excellence.
One lesson, I learnt from all this is “there is no Becoming without Beholding”. I noticed that before I could want to learn from him, I had to relate with him. We became very good friends, brothers. In-fact am his special junior brother. I opened up my life to him, then he did same to me. We commune, fellowship. We share our lives together.
Same happened with Peter and Christ. At Peter’s denial of Jesus at his death, he denied, but I believe that he had so much become like Jesus that it was easy for people to find out that he had been with Jesus. The early disciples were called Christians. They had so much commune with Christ that they were becoming him.
“And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch” (Acts 11:26 KJV)
Notice, they were called Christians. By people who noticed they talked, lived etc. just like Christ. The writer of the book of Hebrews, encouraged us saying “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith”.
In order for the disciples to be like Jesus, he simply chose them to live with him, be with him, and as they do that, they were going to be like him. No wonder, he called us to this same fellowship with him,
“God is faithful, by whom you were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord” (1 Cor. 1:9)
“…and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 1:3)
This technology of “Beholding to Become” had been for ages, Jacob applied it.
“Laban asked, “What shall I give you?” Jacob replied, “You shall not give me anything. But if you will do this one thing for me [which I now propose], I will again pasture and keep your flock:” (Gen. 30:31 AMP)
“Let me pass through your entire flock today, removing from it every speckled and spotted sheep and every dark or black one among the lambs and the spotted and speckled among the goats; and those shall be my wages.” (Gen. 30:32 AMP)
“Then Jacob took branches of fresh poplar and almond and plane trees, and peeled white stripes in them, exposing the white in the branches” (Gen. 30:37 AMP)
“Then he set the branches which he had peeled in front of the flocks in the watering troughs, where the flocks came to drink; and they mated and conceived when they came to drink. (Gen. 30:38 AMP)
“So the flocks mated and conceived by the branches, and the flocks gave birth to streaked, speckled and spotted offspring” (Gen. 30:39 AMP)
Jacob made the animals see, what he wanted their offspring to look like.
He made us sit in heavenly places with him, invited us to his fellowship and as we do this, his image his imprinted upon our soul. His work his enhanced in our lives, and he would be manifested in us without stress as we commit to this to this fellowship.
“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the spirit of the Lord” (2 Cor. 3:18)
I remember those days we would pester my mum, ”mummy can I go to John’ s house?” Sometimes she would say no and at other times she would give her assent. The Yes answer always excited us as we would rush out to either play football together or squat on the floor for a game of ‘lego’ soccer. We were free to express ourselves, we were free to explore once we got the Yes answer. But no one liked to be given a No. No meant sorrow, restrain and sometimes confusion as it seemed you had nothing else to do except that for which you had just been denied permission. It was most painful when we had already dreamed big and fantasized about the prospects of fun, only to be denied permission to fulfill our ‘dreams’. We would sulk and become irritable, wasting the opportunity for better endeavors. But we were kids, we knew not much.
As I think on this I am reminded that God says No. God stops his children from embarking on purposes already planned out. Be it at the onset or right in the middle of proceedings, God still speaks to conquer our desires. God still speaks to stop our rational processions. Yes, God still speaks to redirect our spiritual passions and fiery enthusiasms. Even when it is logical, spiritual or sensible, God still speaks and it could be a No.
The Holy Ghost stopped Paul preaching in Bithynia, stopped him in Asia too (Act 16:7). The Lord stopped Amaziah from going to war with Israeli soldiers he had hired with a lot of money (2Chronicles 25:7). I mean, he had paid for them already. Yet the Lord said, ‘let not the army of Israel go with you.’ And then he got worried and voiced out his trouble having to see all the money he used for hire waste away. The Lord answered, ‘I am able to give thee much more than this.’ (2 Chronicles 25:9) So, friend, thy investment no matter how bounteous, thy journey no matter how far and thy race no matter how extended, if the Lord says no, it is a No.
But remind thy heart, that God’s No is for thy good. He – God – will eventually bring you into the, Yes you need. He is very intentional about your life to bring you into the best. His No is definitely for something better that has not entered thy sphere of thought. His No might bring a present pain but it is for a future gain. He is working something out, yes He is. If God says No, weep not, but rejoice that God is thinking about you and leading you with His mighty hands. If the Almighty has decided to be deliberate with my life then I shall instead rejoice. For is it not true that not everything we desire is the best for us? The Shepherd knows better, He shall lead us well and we shall find pasture.
Hence, we must be in constant inquiry as we travel. Let us not make the Lord look like ‘the sense of Logic.’ God is not logic and He is not always logical. Before we dream dreams and build castles in the clouds of uncertainty, let us make sure our desires are founded upon the word from God. Let ‘thus saith the Lord’ always be our watchword.
I was in the library a day to my birthday, studying, when I met my brother, friend and colleague, ***** (name with-held), from Ethiopia. We greeted each other in love and I asked him to join me later for lunch at the departmental Mensa. Over lunch, we had a nice discussion, laughing and smiling as we shared our lives together. One of the things we laughed about was how our parents had recently been demanding we show them who it was we wanted to get married to. ***** said, “My Mum’s friend told me, I would love you to get married to someone from our tribe here in Ethiopia, so I could speak with her heart to heart in our native language.” He also added “My mum told my younger brother, she would love to be a grandmother”.
Well, I must say I can relate very well with such statements and expressions. My mum is just similar. She keeps telling me “I am not asking you to get married right now, but just show who it is you are dating”. She hardly believes when I tell her I don’t have a girlfriend. She keeps calling me whenever she hears of any of my friends get married telling me am the only one left. I tried hard to make her understand that she is mounting pressure on me, but she wouldn’t stop. I spoke with her husband, (my father, who doesn’t care about the issue) to speak with her, but it was one of those things my dad couldn’t stop her from her doing. I did find the perfect response whenever she asks me. I would just say, “I’m working on it”. That response always makes her happy, although I know the way she thinks of the response is not the way I mean it. But I don’t care as long as it works. I’m sure many who have African mothers can relate.
One statement struck me out of my conversation with *****, it made me consider writing this article. He said “While we were young, we dare not talk about women with my mum. She never wanted us to have a girlfriend while growing.”
For me, it’s almost same. So it is a surprise to see our mothers suddenly come out of the blue and start talking to us about marriage. You know the difference? We had grown. We had matured. We had come of age. We were not thinking like babies or kids anymore but as men. And so our parents think also it is right for “men” to have someone to date. Same it is in our Spiritual Walk. There are truths and lights we would only be exposed to when we grow up. When we mature. See what Paul said here:
“And I brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ” (1 Cor. 3:1)
Paul wanted to teach the Corinthian church a lot of truths, but he couldn’t because they were babes. They were children. They were divided. Just as in the natural world where there are R-rated discussions so also are there deep truths for those who over time have matured themselves in the world. The Holy Spirit through Peter said:
“As new born babes, desire the sincere milk of the word that you grow thereby” (1 Pet. 2:2).
Notice the charge was to GROW! Not to remain a baby. You should feed on God’s word to grow. So you are not tossed here and there by every wind of doctrine. It is annoying when a Christian of many years is still a babe. It’s just same as seeing your 25-year-old son wet the bed. It is disgraceful.
Paul said this “I have fed you with milk and not meat because you can’t bear it and even now you still can’t bear meat” (1 Cor. 3:2 Revised by me). How painful would it be for God, if He would like to introduce new and deeper truths to me to save my generation but I can’t bear it because I am still a baby. Understand me, it’s not wrong to be a baby once but it is bad to remain a baby. See here to:
“Of whom we have much to say, and hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing” vs 11
“For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food” (vs 12)
“For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe” (vs 13)
“But solid food belongs to those who are not of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil” (vs 14) Heb. 5: 11 – 14.
The people addressed here were dull of hearing. They were babes. More about Jesus was supposed to be shared with them, but they were not matured enough to receive it. See these scriptures here also:
“Now I say that the heir, as long as he is a child, does not differ at all from a slave though he is master of all” Gal. 4:1
Notice he is the heir, the owner of the property but he can’t be in charge if he doesn’t step up to grow. He is only a slave. Thanks to God that through believing in Jesus we are now sons and not slaves. Peter said this in 2 Pet. 3:18
“But grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen”
How do I grow in grace? And what does it mean to grow in grace? Please read the article “GROW IN GRACE”.
There is a lot we stand to lose if we choose to remain as babies. Deeper truths and revelations are to be given to us to liberate our generation and establish his reign here on earth. Finally, let me say, “GROW IN GRACE”.
I got hooked on a dance movie called “Step Up”. These young people – in spite of their differences – united themselves to express their passion through dance. They recruited, practiced, and competed not only to win the prize, but also to be heard in their community. They challenged people to make a difference. These young people stepped up!
In a church community, we also need to step up and be united to speak out our mission. God has gifted us with spiritual gifts and we need to utilize them to build up the church and advance the Kingdom of God. We need to get out from our comfort zone and serve together in God’s vineyard. God has saved us and called us to serve. “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Ephesians 2:10)
Here are some responses that people give when asked to serve in the ministry:
I’m not ready yet. I wouldn’t know what to do. I’m not worthy. I’m not good enough to serve God. I’m not that gifted. There are others who can be more effective. I’m too busy. I have a lot of things to fix first in my life.
Though some people may have the desire to serve, they often lack the confidence. And this is because they feel that they are not yet equipped. But here’s the good news! Jesus is not expecting us to perform. He is not expecting us to make a first class impression on him. Jesus simply wants our obedience to answer His call to follow Him. And when we make that first step, He will open doors of opportunity for us to grow, to be trained, and to serve in the ministry according to our gifts.
There is a saying that goes, “When God calls, God equips.” Equipping and learning from Jesus is a lifetime journey. A heart of obedience, humility, and being teachable are the only requirements to do His ministry work.
When Jesus commissioned His disciples, He gave them the assurance of His presence wherever they would go. “And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20). Jesus will never leave your side. He will be your guide, your mentor, and your teacher.
It’s about time to step up, my friend. Pray and discern where God is leading you to serve in the ministry. Be equipped for the work of service. Step up and make a difference in the Kingdom of God!
God doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the call