Deuteronomy 24:9 Remember Miriam

“There is, however, a far more common ailment among us—and that is pride from the bottom looking up. It is manifest in so many ways, such as fault finding, gossiping, backbiting, and murmuring, living beyond our means, envying, coveting, withholding gratitude and praise that might lift another, and being unforgiving and jealous.” ― Ezra Taft Benson

What have you complained about in the last 24 hours? Has God heard your complaints, and do you think he would be pleased by your exact sentiments? Do you know that God hates murmuring and complaints, and Israelites were killed for it Philippians 2 14 Do everything without murmuring or questioning [the providence of God], 15 so that you may prove yourselves to be blameless and guileless, innocent and uncontaminated, children of God without blemish in the midst of a [morally] crooked and [spiritually] perverted generation, among whom you are seen as bright lights [beacons shining out clearly] in the world [of darkness], 16 holding out and offering to everyone the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I will have reason to rejoice greatly because I did not run [my race] in vain nor labor without result. 

A good outright example is found in Numbers 12: Miriam and Aaron are having a private conversation where they speak against Moses and the Lord hears them.

Now [a]Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the [b]Cushite woman whom he had married (for he had married a Cushite woman)and they said, “Has the Lord really spoken only through Moses? Has He not spoken also through us?” And the Lord heard it.

Our first encounter with Miriam Moses’s eldest sister is during his infancy Exodus 2 …Then she put the child in it and set it among the reeds by the bank of the Nile. 4And his sister [Miriam] stood some distance away to find out what would happen to him…  And she took pity on him and said, “This is one of the Hebrews’ children.” Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and call a [c]wet-nurse from the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?” And Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, “Go ahead.” So the girl went and called the child’s mother. She stands out as smart, brave and a courageous girl. Her character plays a crucial role in preserving baby Moses’s life. Later her and Aaron help Moses (the chosen burden bearer) to guide the Israelites out of bondage [Egypt]. Miriam is also noted through scripture to be a prophetess and worship leader Exodus 15:20 Then Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron [and Moses], took a timbrel in her hand, and all the women followed her with timbrels and dancing

However, Numbers 12 presents a different scene, all along the siblings seem to be working as a team. But we see an open complaint, a murmur from Miriam and Aaron against Moses. God who hears everything, has heard them. Judgement is called Suddenly the Lord said to Moses, Aaron, and Miriam, “Come out, you three, to the Tent of Meeting (tabernacle).” And the three of them came out. And penalty pronounced. And the anger of the Lord was kindled against Miriam and Aaron, and He departed. 10 But when the cloud had withdrawn from over the tent, behold, Miriam was leprous, as white as snow. And Aaron turned and looked at Miriam, and behold, she was leprous.

On seeing the state of their sister, Aaron as the priest (escaped punishment due to the authority of the office he held) intercedes on her behalf to Moses.[ Exodus 28:3 Tell all the skilled and talented people whom I have endowed with a spirit of wisdom, that they are to make Aaron’s garments to sanctify him and set him apart to serve as a priest for Me]. In return Moses petitions the Lord to heal her, God rich in mercy heeds to his request and grants however, she has to suffer the consequence 14 But the Lord said to Moses, “If her father had but [d]spit in her face, would she not bear her shame for seven days? Let her be shut up outside the camp for seven days, and afterward she may return.15 So Miriam was shut up outside the camp for seven days, and the people did not move on until Miriam was brought in again [and declared ceremonially clean from her leprosy].

Miriam’s open rebellion towards Moses by suggesting that he was unequivocally tainted by having a Cushite wife and therefore not worthy or was their equal in the office of God. She presumed herself and Aaron to be equally righteous to Moses, yet God rebukes this perception by explain the difference in their calling. “Being such a supreme prophet, standing head and shoulders above others, he was not to be judged by the same yardstick and the same parameters as any other individual—even another prophet as great as Miriam or Aaron.”

And He said,

“Hear now My words:
If there is a prophet among you,
I the Lord will make Myself known to him in a vision
And I will speak to him in a dream.

“But it is not so with My servant Moses;
He is entrusted and faithful in all My house.

“With him I speak mouth to mouth [directly],
Clearly and openly and not in riddles;
And he beholds the form of the Lord.
Why then were you not afraid to speak against My servant Moses?”

Now, despite what seem to be a great connection through teamwork (siblings called for a great purpose Micah 6:4 And I sent before you Moses [to lead you], Aaron [the high priest], and Miriam [the prophetess].). A big sister with loving, caring and leadership qualities Miriam’s life was a determined objective of increasing family unity and harmony”. Her critical spirit stands out in her words of gossip and slander. She had witnessed the hand of God and his mighty works through Moses first hand from the time he was a baby, out of Egypt to their point of wilderness. Yet one moment of misgiving she and Aaron makes a statement of pride which seem rather to question God’s instrument of choice. Why was she punished so severely? To teach us that God does not dispense one-size-fits-all justice. Every individual is judged uniquely according to his or her abilities and potential.” Miriam appears to have had an attitude adjustment after the leprosy and she never questioned Moses or His authority. In fact, next we hear of her is in Numbers 20:1 Then the Israelites, the whole congregation, came into the Wilderness of Zin in the first month [in the fortieth year after leaving Egypt]. And the people lived in Kadesh. Miriam died there and was buried there.

How can we apply Miriam’s scenario in our lives as children of God; who are to establish the purposes for which He intended for us, and that we are victorious in our daily walk with Christ.

  1. Quit murmuring and be content.

A mouth that pours out complaints will always be drinking from a fountain of a bitter heart, hence a person who complains and murmur will never give God any glory. From a bitter heart one can develop rebellion against God without necessarily being conscious of it. Therefore, be content in you circumstance. Be it small or big victories, let your eyes be fixed on Christ and not what others have. Rejoice and count all as blessings for the trials we pass through in life build us in Christ.

Hebrews 13  Let your character [your moral essence, your inner nature] be free from the love of money [shun greed—be financially ethical], being content with what you have; for He has said, “I will never [under any circumstances] desert you [nor give you up nor leave you without support, nor will I in any degree leave you helpless], nor will I forsake or let you down or relax My hold on you [assuredly not]!” So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently say, “The Lord is my Helper [in time of need], I will not be afraid. What will man do to me?”

Philippians 4 11 Not that I speak from [any personal] need, for I have learned to be content [and self-sufficient through Christ, satisfied to the point where I am not disturbed or uneasy] regardless of my circumstances. 12 I know how to get along and live humbly [in difficult times], and I also know how to enjoy abundance and live in prosperity. In any and every circumstance I have learned the secret [of facing life], whether well-fed or going hungry, whether having an abundance or being in need. 13 I can do all things [which He has called me to do] through Him who strengthens and empowers me [to fulfill His purpose—I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency; I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him who infuses me with inner strength and confident peace.] 

  • Murmuring eliminates Gratitude

A bitter heart with no contentment will never be grateful even if God was to give them all their desires. When you are ungrateful, we are bound to give poor testimonies concerning our walk with Christ. We testify of His goodness with a ‘BUT’, a hesitation within us of how He should have worked it out. Our ingratitude dwindles the LOVE, HOPE and FAITH in us and in HIM, as our focus is inherited from a perspective of it should have been ‘this way Lord’.  Hence forgetting what God has done for you and eliminating trust in Him.

Jude 1 16 These people are [habitual] murmurers, griping and complaining, following after their own desires [controlled by passion]; they speak arrogantly, [pretending admiration and] flattering people to gain an advantage.

  • Murmuring ruins, a reputation

When we murmur and complain, its usually directed at someone. The devil is crafty for in that moment we tend to sneak in the words that are bound to tear them down. God hates it when we slander one another as it tramps on His Word “Love thy neighbor as you Love thy self”

James 5 Do not complain against one another, believers, so that you will not be judged [for it]. Look! The Judge is standing [b]right at the door. 10 As an example, brothers and sisters, of suffering and patience, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord [as His messengers and representatives]. 11 You know we call those blessed [happy, spiritually prosperous, favored by God] who were steadfast and endured [difficult circumstances]. You have heard of the patient endurance of Job and you have seen the Lord’s outcome [how He richly blessed Job]. The Lord is full of compassion and is merciful.

Leviticus 19 16 You shall not go around as a gossip among your people, and you are not to act against the life of your neighbor [with slander or false testimony]; I am the Lord.

Ephesians 4 with all humility [forsaking self-righteousness], and gentleness [maintaining self-control], with patience, bearing with one another [a]in [unselfish] love.

  • Murmuring is backed by the Spirit of pride

Where there is murmur there is a backing from the spirit of Pride, hence the fruits of it are jealousy, envy, strife and competition. Where there is pride there is no humility of the heart. And a prideful heart can not worship God. Satan is the pride in its definition therefore we are not able to fully submit to Gods ways and precepts. Why? cause we tend to exalt ourselves more than HIM.

Proverbs 16 18Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall.19 It is better to be humble in spirit with the lowly Than to divide the spoil with the proud (haughty, arrogant).

  • Murmuring causes death

A pride full heart will automatically rebel from God. This results to spiritual death which will eventually lead to physical death because the divine presence of God has departed from them. God does not wrestle with man to be seen or heard, he is gentle and we have the choice to be in HIM or do it our way. However, note that God’s presence brings protection, provision, and peace. Therefore, choose HIM and praise HIM for HIS goodness believing that ALL things work together for the good of those who love HIM, who have been called according to HIS purpose.

1 Corinthians 10 For I do not want you to be unaware, believers, that our fathers were all under the cloud [in which God’s presence went before them] and they all passed [miraculously and safely] through the [Red] Sea; And all [of them] were baptized into Moses [into his safekeeping as their leader] in the cloud and in the sea; and all [of them] ate the same [a]spiritual food; and all [of them] drank the same [b]spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not well-pleased with [c]most of them, for they were scattered along the ground in the wilderness [because their lack of self-control led to disobedience which led to death].

1Timothy 6: 12 Fight the good fight of the faith [in the conflict with evil]; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and [for which] you made the good confession [of faith] in the presence of many witnesses. 13 solemnly charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and [in the presence] of Christ Jesus, who made the good confession [in His testimony] before Pontius Pilate, 14 to keep all His precepts without stain or reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 

Psalm 45: The Glories of the Messiah and His Bride

To the Chief Musician. Set to [a]“The Lilies.” A [b]Contemplation of the sons of Korah. A Song of Love.

45 My heart is overflowing with a good theme;
I recite my composition concerning the King;
My tongue is the pen of a [c]ready writer.

You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever.
[d]Gird Your sword upon Your thigh, O Mighty One,
With Your glory and Your majesty.
And in Your majesty ride prosperously because of truth, humility, and righteousness;
And Your right hand shall teach You awesome things.
Your arrows are sharp in the heart of the King’s enemies;
The peoples fall under You.

Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;
A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
You love righteousness and hate wickedness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.
All Your garments are scented with myrrh and aloes and cassia,
Out of the ivory palaces, by which they have made You glad.
Kings’ daughters are among Your honorable women;
At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.

10 Listen, O daughter,
Consider and incline your ear;
Forget your own people also, and your father’s house;
11 So the King will greatly desire your beauty;
Because He is your Lord, worship Him.
12 And the daughter of Tyre will come with a gift;
The rich among the people will seek your favor.

13 The royal daughter is all glorious within the palace;
Her clothing is woven with gold.
14 She shall be brought to the King in robes of many colors;
The virgins, her companions who follow her, shall be brought to You.
15 With gladness and rejoicing they shall be brought;
They shall enter the King’s palace.

16 Instead of Your fathers shall be Your sons,
Whom You shall make princes in all the earth.
17 I will make Your name to be remembered in all generations;
Therefore the people shall praise You forever and ever.

LEsT I fORGet…ReMiND mE

Stand firm and be still, this too shall pass.

Life’s trials are not easy but in God’s will, each has a purpose. Warren Wiersbe

When we start a new path in our lives and we face challenges, mostly we tend to run back to that which is familiar/old. Hence the saying ‘Better the devil you know than the angel you don’t’. Because the familiar things even though we faced challenges while there, we learnt how to cope with the familiarity that came with those trials/toxicity. Hence, the devil deceives us that we are way comfortable in the mess we already know. In other words, we learnt to maneuver our ways in familiar territories of oppression and suppression. Whether mentally, physically or emotional. I bet, that’s why we stay where we are, afraid to start a fresh… always going back to that “devil” you and I know how to deal with. I remember coming to Britain, the first weeks were fine and full of excitement that comes with going abroad. However, winter happened! and the reality checked in. I felt like God had thrown me into the deep-end. The cold weather was driving me nuts (till now) plus I hate the fact that by three p.m it gets dark during this season. Adapting was hard, I could not make friends, the intensity of my postgraduate and pressure back home where financial assistance was needed. Lacking the understanding that I was starting a new life, in a different country. Therefore, I needed time before anyone could call me over any assistance. I did not picture my situation being as it was back then. As a result, I found myself complaining to God that I was not able to do it and I found myself thinking I am better off where I had been. God worked on me and through the Holy Spirit I saw how I had let my guard down leaving a gap for the enemy to play mind games with my circumstances. The enemy knows the mind, filling us with thoughts of doubts of how it’s not worth it. Displaying a perception to us how this is the exact opposite of what we prayed for. How our current possession of the promise currently is not the image of what you asked of the Lord. Through Exodus God reminded me of Israelites and how they complained to a point they told Moses they would rather be back in Egypt. Forgetting the suffering and crying for help from God that they once did. Yet God was faithful, sending Moses his servant. Through him, He performed great signs and wonders; depicting an evidence of a faithful and loving Father. A God who is self sufficient, willing to go extra length to deliver His children who were destitute in their suffering. Only for them to forget every single promise from God at their point of deliverance and to start complaining in the wilderness. He promised to be with them always …to give them provision… to protect them. Psalm 105:39-42 He spread a cloud for a covering; and fire to give light in the night. The people asked, and he brought quails, and satisfied them with the bread of heaven. He opened the rock, and the waters gushed out; they ran in the dry places like a river. For he remembered his holy promise, and Abraham his servant. However, they forgot! According to them, the challenges they faced on their way to the promise land caused them to question God. As a result, they began having doubt in His Word. This erased everything God had done to deliver them. Just because they faced trials on their way to promise Land. Their faith was clouded.

Next God used Noah’s story to remind me of a Heart that genuinely receives favor from God. Noah Built an Ark as per God’s instructions it was to withstand the water that would destroy the whole earth. How many of us see how Tsunamis leave a trail of destruction on their path? Well let’s imagine how much and how strong the water is, to be able to destroy the earth. Noah and his family must have faced serious times in that Ark. They must have been thrown about, as am sure it was not smooth sailing. Huh!! Lord this was not the plan, we did not build an ark to be thrown around in the waters …this is too much one can barely drink a glass of water before its shaken from your hand and don’t forget the smell of animals excreting everywhere. God this was not the plan according to what you said it sounded like we should have been merry and enjoying the cruise but this being thrown around is too much. Am assuming that this is what might have happened. However, the Bible does not say that. Rather shows a man who knew God who is self existent and full of wisdom and was in tune with His ways. To a point he got out of the Ark after 21 days of checking if the earth was habitable. I see a man of God even in his season of waiting, he did not ask or command God to please dry the world. For he was in hurry to get out maybe the Ark was smelling or he had done his part. No way instead the day he was absolute from the pigeon that it was good enough he still waited for seven days then got out and the first thing he did was to sacrifice to God in order to worship Him… Show Gratitude and reverence, His Great and Mighty ways wonders to perform. One thing I know is that he could not have done this by himself, for the spirit of God must have been poured in him. How many of us show this amount of patience when God gives us instructions concerning our deliverance from that place/job/addiction/financial hardships He wants us to be in. As a result, we see God establishing a covenant through Noah’s sacrifice made after obedience and patience. I am guilty of this lack of patience and obedience …fretting. Forgetting my stones of remembrance and allowing the enemy to play tricks on me so that I only see the challenges now and less of the evidence of what God has previously done to lead me where I am. There is a reason why God performs the signs and wonders, He wants us to remember and always know that He is God and there is none before Him…none compares to Him and none can stand against Him. He is and remains everlasting God. Dear, Lord I want to be like Noah knowing what you had told me will come to pass that these trials I face are making me grow for the very purpose you created me. I am not perfect Lord, forgive us for we are all struggling in different aspects of our lives help us lord. Lest we forget, remind us through your Word the evidence of your works over our lives. For we acknowledge the provisions and protection over our lives, you are Alpha and Omega and through your covenant established for us. Through your son Jesus Christ, lest we forget that you put all this plan in place for our benefit for the very purpose you set in us. For your Word say All things work together for good to them that love you. Therefore, we humble ourselves and seek you. In awe of your presence remember us Lord, we beseech you not to forget us. For you promised through your Word to the Israelites if my children who are called by my name …Lord may this promise find us in this last days as our souls’ hunger for you. Lest we forget… remind us!!!

“That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong”. – Paul’s Vision and His Thorn

My Top 5 Reflections in 2020

‘Wherever life plants you bloom with grace’

1.Define your blessings; your race is yours alone, growth does not have to be seen or felt. Your progress does not have to measure to the society’s standard.

The pressure of having it together by a certain age i.e. by age 30, one is expected to be (married + child/ren) + job [career ladder*six figure salary] big German machine with a house mortgage on your bank statement. The society pressures one to be within that range …I too defined my blessings based on the above standards but looking back I must admit that I was naive, lacked wisdom and all my ambitions were driven by selfish desires and pride. However, ever since I let go and let God…my growth trajectory has taken another turn; my blessings are now defined within the boundaries of His word. I am running my own race according to His appointed time. Its no longer about what the society dictates and measures as a success but only that which God says YES to my obedience.

2.Motherhood is a privilege though bestowed to many, intentions and motives must be pure. You are a missionary raising the next generation.

A baby is a blessing that will rock your world literally! To say the least… change your body, shift your perspective, question your reality and vaporise your fantasy. Not only that, staying at home 24/7 as a stay-home-mom is a serious job, it’s not for the fainted hearted and weak minds. If you are not prepared for it you will question everything about your decision to become a mother, shift blame on your partner and resent the transition in something meant for good. All in all, it’s been a humbling experience, full of faith and a strong desire to serve by my best at little human.

3. I desire to be accepted and not approved; I am enough!

I have evolved in owning up my voice, my thoughts and my approaches; ‘am unapologetically myself’. Sometimes through the hardships, failures and struggles. We find ourselves conditioned that in order to “receive” we must drop our identity and conform to fit into someone’s else’s description. You are an individual allowed to charter his/her own path. therefore, move against the grain, against the reformers, conformers and regulators. It’s in the ‘spirit of rebellion’ from old ways that new doors have been opened. No longer on survival mode, it’s time to live an active life. Above all let not the opinions of man interfere with the direction given to you by God.

4. ‘Take rest my child’, the importance of resting season.

Rest the art to pause, gift by God restore, replenish and refocus your heart and mind. Though I have not been physically and mentally burnt out in this season however, I have found peace in the unexpected way. Letting go of the frustrations of how I anticipated that motherhood season would be. Releasing the anxiety of being pregnant and delivering during the pandemic. Freeing myself of the idea that an ideal 21st century woman/mother must have a thriving side hustle preferably online business while taking care of a new-born/children and running a household. We live in a fast paced and instant generation. our status is defined by how many projects we got going at the same time. I remember someone called me and in the midst of the conversation they inquired what I was doing on the side apart from being just at home and taking care of my darling daughter…this got me thinking must I be doing something else besides taking care of my new baby even though she is just months old. What if what I was doing was not productive, what if I made all the money in the world at the expense of my daughter not getting enough of her mother…my husband not being able to rest from work because am quick to get him to babysit so I can get my business in check. I remember the Holy Spirit checked my heart for the plans I had driven by my own self ambitions. Season of motherhood is sacrificial everything that I was doing in this season required my energy and solely dedicated to it. It was time to reset and motherhood was my reset button.

5. God of impossibility, all knowing, all powerful and ever present

Extra ordinary calling leads to extraordinary life. when I made the decision to surrender and submit to God plans for me, I never knew how much my mind would be blown. It’s a life of faith daily, it’s a hard life for an outsider looking in, its even harder for those living within the walls of His guide. It takes Christ to live a life even close to Christ-like. We can not do it alone, yet I choose to do it because I trust my Father, He says “Come unto me and I will give you rest.” He has never failed me before and I know through His Word He will never fail me. He has my back even when I find myself caught between the hardships of life; He turns out to be the very same rock that I can lean on. God is good every bit God is good. He remembers!!!

For great is His love, reaching to the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth.

Psalms 57:10-11

I am the Lord your God

Dwelling Under the Palm Tree

“I will show my greatness and Holiness”

Our God of zeal and fiery wrath. He who makes Himself known in the sight of man and all nations. You are great and Holy. When you speak, it shall surely come to pass. Display your glory and splendour over our lives, reminding us of your sovereignty. We repent on our unfaithfulness and wicked ways. Hide not your face from us. We plead for your compassion and mercies. For we ask that you may restore our souls back to the very first love. Pour out your Spirit on us, revive us once again and heal our hearts. Precious Lord Jesus Christ may your Grace meet us at our very point of need. Bless your great and Holy name.

Amen

9 He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will…

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“We knew God before you”

Dwelling Under the Palm Tree

“The gospel is so simple that small children can understand it, and it is so profound that studies by the wisest theologians will never exhaust its riches.” ‘Charles Hodge

 

“You can’t know God more than us, we were saved before you, we experienced his miracles before you and we were then like you now.” Worst of all …”you cannot each us about God because we have been where you are, and you will find yourself where we are now”. I can attest that I heard the above statements countless times over the past years. At some point, it seemed as though knowing God and having a relationship with Him was a contest. Consequently, salvation was more of a sprint and the angels kept scores. There is nothing as worse as diming a ‘lesser person’s’ walk of faith and as a result this made me shy from testifying my experiences…

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I am the Lord your God

“I will show my greatness and Holiness”

Our God of zeal and fiery wrath. He who makes Himself known in the sight of man and all nations. You are great and Holy. When you speak, it shall surely come to pass. Display your glory and splendour over our lives, reminding us of your sovereignty. We repent on our unfaithfulness and wicked ways. Hide not your face from us. We plead for your compassion and mercies. For we ask that you may restore our souls back to the very first love. Pour out your Spirit on us, revive us once again and heal our hearts. Precious Lord Jesus Christ may your Grace meet us at our very point of need. Bless your great and Holy name.

Amen

9 He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are rolled up and sealed until the time of the end. 10 Many will be purified, made spotless and refined, but the wicked will continue to be wicked. None of the wicked will understand, but those who are wise will understand.

Daniel 12:9-10

Kari Jobe – Forever

Kari Jobe – Forever

If there are words for Him then I don’t have them.

See my brain has not yet reached the point where it could form a thought that could adequately describe the greatness of my God.

And my lungs have not yet developed the ability to release a breath with enough agility to breathe out the greatness of His Love.

And my voice, see my voice is so inhibited , restrained by human limits that it’s hard to even sing the praise up, you see, if there are words for Him, then I don’t have them.

My God, His Grace is remarkable, mercies are innumerable, strength is impenetrable, He is honorable, accountable, favorable.

He’s unsearchable yet knowable, indefinable, yet approachable, indescribable, yet personal

He is beyond comprehension, further than imagination, constant through generations, King of every nation, but if there are words for Him, then I don’t have them

You see my words are few to try and capture the ONE TRUE GOD, using my vocabulary will never do, but I use words as an expression, an expression of worship to a Savior, a Savior who is both worthy and deserving of my praise, so I use words.

My heart extols the Lord, blesses His Name forever. He has won my heart, captured my mind, and has bound them both together. He has defeated me in my rebellion, conquered me in my sin, He has welcomed me into His presence, completely invited me in. He has made Himself the object of my sight, flooding me with mercies in the morning, drowning me with Grace in the night, but if there are words for Him, then I don’t have them.

But what I do have is GOOD NEWS, for my God knew that manmade words would never do, for words are just tools that we use to point to the truth.

So He sent His Son Jesus Christ as THE WORD, LIVING PROOF, He is THE IMAGE OF THE INVISIBLE GOD, THE FIRST BORN OF ALL CREATION, FOR BY HIM ALL THINGS WERE CREATED, GIVING NOTHINGNESS, FORMATION.

AND BY HIS WORD HE SUSTAINS IN THE POWER OF HIS NAME. FOR HE IS BEFORE ALL THINGS AND ABOVE ALL THINGS HE REIGNS. HOLY IS HIS NAME!

SO PRAISE HIM FOR HIS LIFE! THE WAY HE PERSERVERED IN STRIFE. THE HUMBLE SON OF GOD BECOMING THE PERFECT SACRIFICE.

PRAISE HIM FOR HIS DEATH! THAT HE WILLINGLY STOOD IN OUR PLACE THAT HE LOVINGLY ENDURED THE GRAVE THAT HE BATTLED OUR ENEMY, AND ON THE THIRD DAY ROSE IN VICTORY.

HE IS EVEYTHING THAT WAS PROMISED.

PRAISE HIM AS THE RISEN KING.

LIFT YOUR VOICE AND SING, FOR ONE DAY HE WILL RETURN FOR US, AND WE WILL FINALLY BE UNITED WITH OUR SAVIOR FOR ENTERNITY! ETERNITY!

SO IT IS NOT JUST WORDS THAT I PROCLAIM, FOR MY WORDS POINT TO THE WORD, AND THE WORD HAS A NAME, HOPE HAS A NAME, JOY HAS A NAME, PEACE HAS A NAME, LOVE HAS A NAME, AND THAT NAME IS JESUS CHRIST!

PRAISE HIS NAME FOREVER!!!!!!!!” 

pLAyIng GoD

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‘A reality altered, is faith being built in the gymnasium of obscurity’

Life is random; things happen throwing us in a boxing ring where we wrestle with our faith. We never truly know who we are until something drastic happens paralyzing us on our tracks. By that I mean, a tragedy can hit making us question the very core of our being and where we stand with Christ. Over the years in my walk with God, though am still maturing in faith. One thing I have learnt in certainty is When God wants your attention, He will get it. Where Christ wants to reveal himself…He will show up in the most unexpected circumstance which are very unrelated, untimely and unplanned. A few Sundays back, I woke as usual to prepare to go to church. Checked my phone and I could see I had ample time on my hands. While in the bathroom, ‘my thoughts wandered’ to Pharaoh of Egypt verses God who identifies himself as ‘I AM’. My meditation moment struck Exodus 11-12, which ended with God’s angel killing the firstborns of Egyptian both man and animals. This was the 10th plague that softened pharaohs heart a demonstration of power on God’s part to show a prideful heart that challenges Him in a ‘win or die situation’. I remember a voice assuring me how relentless God can be/was on delivering his children from bondage to an extent that other children had to die…a symbol of truth in/of the Word. This bared witness as the greatest act of love when he gave up His only son Jesus Christ who dies at the cross, the sacrificial lamb of mankind. Dressed and ready to have breakfast I picked my phone, only to see several missed calls and messages. I felt my heart drop deep as I read one of the messages, my little cousin not so little anymore had taken his own life.

I remember experiencing a level of paralysis where my body was numbed by some cold feeling that left a feeling of anguish and despair. I kept thinking and even uttered it loud at some point that “we had failed him”. At that moment as everything sank in, I could feel an extent of guilt. This is because I was once in the same boat; where your mental struggle vs your reality and how you perceive life, both holds a heavy blinded perspective that sees no way out but rather burdensome. I remember reaching this point where you can’t just seem to grasp your way out of it. It’s like you keep falling in a lonely pit of darkness and the little air you have is being pushed out of your lungs. I can also recall the first time I got to learn about his predicaments, I reached out to the closest relative and inquire if he was getting intense help because something had shown me it would be dire next time. Yet, I was too scared to voice my opinions out loud. The week of his demise, he had flashed in my mind to inquire if he was okay. This was my favourite cousin as a baby/toddler. I would even trade my Sunday morning breakfast especially the sausages or the eggs with my eldest brother just to carry him by myself the whole time in church. He was this adorable dark baby with a big hoarse voice, when he cried those of us on the church balcony would know Sammy was having a moment.

One time we had gathered to celebrate his first birthday, he was walking around the dining table opening his mouth to be fed by every guest. Well, my eldest brother in his all wisdom of pranks decided to feed him a spoon of rice mixed with hot pepper sauce. The baby boy could breath, he did not cry though but just opened his mouth to motion something was not right. We gave him orange soda, which he downed almost half a glass then thought it was funny and went back straight to my brother to feed him again the same food. I remember during the sleepovers, his love for cabbage and ugali as a toddler would amaze me. Fast forward as life would have it, we all went different paths due to family dynamics that was beyond us. They say when two bulls fight the grass suffers, well the last time I saw him physically after years of no contact, before me was a tall young man in suit walking out of church. One thing I noted is as he was walking towards me was that he was slouched, as if trying to conceal his height even though it made him stand out already. I was happy see to him including his brothers nonetheless, the pleasantries were very short and precise. At that very time it felt like we were more like long lost neighbours than immediate cousins. Next time I saw him was through a video call where he said his regards an immediately disappeared in the background.  In his Eulogy I could tell that he was a neat person something he must have picked from his father, with culinary skills a trait visible in the clan. Another thing that stood out was his love for music and that explains why he wanted to start a band. I remember him posting it on social media where he advertised the positions available and I thought at last! we were going to have a serious band owner in the family. Maybe you would have minister through music, granted that it’s a gift from God. What would have been the chances that your band would have spiritually echoed to a world so lost like David sang Psalm 40:3 He put a new song in my mouth’. You had a desire and instrumental gift bestowed upon you, granted the opportunity we would have witnessed the evidence of God image in us through your music.

Nevertheless, as God would permit it. A sensitive heart with a misunderstood mind can easily become a wandering soul and a broken spirit trapped in a desert of humanity. The further along we go, the lonelier it gets. What God taught me in this season of misfortune; was that the author of our being, creator and sustainer of life has the privilege to take this life which is not our right but bestowed on us through His mercy and Grace. Hence, the peculiarities of tragedies in our lives is the evidence of God in pursuit of man. He allows it in order to awaken our souls or make us aware of who are in Him. To bring us on our knees so He alone can meet us at that very point of our need. Lest we forget! It’s never about us, but for the Glory of Christ taking its rightful position to fill the very place the enemy thinks he has left empty. May that sitting space you left empty in the dining table in your home, be the very position that Christ fills and partakes in the family meals. As for the gap left hollow during family prayers according to His promise in John 14:16, may it be filled by the Helper/comforter/counselor who saturates our souls and abides in us forever. You remain in my heart forever as a tested soul that endured it’s time. As we remember the God who took the firstborn sons gave up his own firstborn Son.

Ps: The message on your last picture on WhatsApp a fresco painting by Michelangelo c.1508-1512 on Creation of Adam but then again one thing stood out, you choose close up of the hands. Where Adam’s hand on the left is a little limp and his index finger could be extended more. While, God, on the right, cannot reach out anymore, as his index finger is fully extended. Metaphorically all Adam has to do, is to lift a finger, and he will make the connection with his Creator.

Jesus straightened up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” She said, “No one, sir.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go your way, and from now on do not sin again.”

“There is only one who has ever been able to say He who is without sin cast the first stone, there is only one who has every right to cast the stone and chose not to do it.” Priscilla Shirer

John 7:53-8:11