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Posts tagged ‘Moses’

Okogie: A Profile In Discipleship, Lesson To Jet Pastors By Bayo Oluwasanmi.

By Bayo Oluwasanmi

For the Archbishop Emeritus of the Catholic Archdiocese of Lagos, His Eminence, Anthony Olubunmi Okogie, it’s not easy taking a stand for what’s right when every Nigerian Jet Pastor around him is running after what’s wrong. It’s not been fun either for Okogie swimming against the current of public opinion or walking against the wind of selfish pursuits.

Standing alone may not be popular especially in a reprobate nation like Nigeria, but it is always profitable for Okogie who chooses to walk with God. Working with people is not so difficult. All you need is unfailing patience, insight, stability, and tremendous experience. And Okogie is abundantly blessed with all the four qualities – and much more.

God could have chosen to do his work another way, but he didn’t. He chose to use people. People like Moses, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and of course Okogie. God asked Moses to demand of Pharaoh, “Let my people go!” And God asked Isaiah and Jeremiah to prophesy to a rebellious nation. Moses said “I won’t.” Isaiah said “Woe is me!” Jeremiah said, “I can’t.” And God asked Okogie to fight for the poor. Okogie said “Here I am God, send me!” Yet God supplied the strength and training to prepare each messenger to deliver his message.

In like manner, when God asked the Jet Pastors to side with poor and oppressed Nigerians and confront the oppressors with truth only the truth, they said “We’ll rather begin our charity abroad in our executive jets than associate with suffering Nigerians.” In unison, they answered, “We can’t,” “We won’t,” and “We will never!”

Though I have never listened to Okogie’s sermon, that’s what he did with his life – in the choices he made, the wisdom demonstrated, the priority that he gave to prayer, and the diligence he demonstrated toward the plight of the poor and voiceless Nigerians. I’m not a Catholic, but Cardinal Okogie’s outspokenness against military dictators and tyrants of a democratic government almost persuaded me to become a Catholic.

Every successive government in Nigeria has received the full brunt of Okogie’s assault. Like a diligent watchman, Okogie guards the Nigerian multitude of poor by warning the “Ogas at the top” of the impending judgement. He calls and calls, but no one is listening.

The career of Okogie, presents the life and ministry of “theology of liberation” as he preaches to his once mighty nation – Nigeria – a withering flower or a passing shadow. For nearly half a century, Okogie proclaims an unpopular message to the politicians as well as the Jet Pastors: do not pray that the poor be fed unless you are willing to provide the bread.

His sermons go unheeded by the headstrong leaders who do their best to silence Okogie by ignoring his cries and counsel. Opposed, hated, and once arrested, the heartbroken priest lives to see the cruel political leaders unleash all forms of barbarity on Nigerians.

Okogie, one of Nigeria’s prophetic mouthpieces – what a privilege and a responsibility – for the 77-year old priest to peer into the troubled waters of 2015 and doles out unpalatable truth to President Goodluck Jonathan not to run in 2015.

In an interview published in The Citizen Online September 22 last year, Okogie focused on 2015 presidential elections. Headlined “Don’t Run, Jonathan, Don’t …” the interview is a deliciously satisfying encounter with the fiery priest. At 77, Okogie remains unbowed and unbought. He dispenses the truth with divine generosity. There is still fire in the belly of the lion.

Excerpts from his interview:

On President Jonathan and 2015: “If I were Jonathan I will not try it because the writing on the wall does not favour it. We have not even got to 2015. There is so much sycophancy and flattery. It is like telling Okogie now to go into politics, ‘come, you are the kind of person we want,’ you think I am stupid.”

“Apart from the story that Jonathan made an agreement that he would do just one term, if it is true, do you think those who were there when he said ‘just one term’ are stupid.”

On corruption: “It is quite true and corruption has been there, but not as strong as it is now. It is now a cankerworm. The only good Lord can help us out of it. But if we want to fight corruption, we should start from the top. The man at the top is thinking when I leave office, what happens to me and he want to build an empire for himself. How did it get it?”

“Why are so many people running into politics? 2015 is two years away; see how they are killing themselves. Who even knows who will get to 2015? What do you think they are looking for, money? Nothing else. They are not patriotic; they are not. All our political leaders, how many of them can beat their chests to say they are patriotic. It is just gimmick and pancake that they are doing.”

On government’s plan for the youth: “They often say the youths are the future leaders of tomorrow; it is not true, because where are the plans they have for the youths; how many of them are truly educating the youths or giving scholarships?”

“Look at the ongoing ASUU strike, then consider the amount of money the senators, president, and governors collect, compared to what others are getting in Europe. And look at our schools, the citadel of learning, where the youths are supposed to be trained for the future of the country, that they claim is for youths.”

“Why are they not sending their own children to those kinds of schools? And those who do not have enough money to take their children to Europe take them to Ghana and even Benin Republic. This is the problem we all have. And this is why corruption is there.”

On the political parties: “The parties are chop, I chop like Fela said; they are all the same. If we are all patriotic, you do not care where the person who rules comes from…” I am looking for job, but I cannot get the job simply because I am from a particular region. What is wrong with us? So, our political leaders should guide and guard their mouths, because some of the people listening to them are stark illiterates, they hear go they do not hear come.”

On unholy alliance between Jet Pastors and oppressors of the ruling class: “It is pity that a good number of those who call themselves religious leaders today are not religious leaders; they only became religious leaders because they want to feed their tummy… And they feel they can take it up, read, and interpret it (Bible) to suit themselves, but no way. And this is why they are not keeping to their calling.”

The iconic figure of the Roman Catholic Mission in Nigeria, Cardinal Anthony Olubunmi Okogie retired from the pastoral governance of the See of Lagos having reached the age limit of 75 years May 25, 2012.

Born June 6, 1936 in Lagos, to a royal family of Uromi in Edo State his father was Esan and his mother was Yoruba. He holds a licentiate in sacred theology and was ordained as a priest December 1, 1966. In 1973, he became the Archbishop of Lagos. From 1994 to 2000, he headed the Bishop’s Conference of Nigeria.

Archbishop Okogie is the ultimate friend and companion of the voiceless, the marginalized, the helpless, and the poor. He’s the people’s priest. In my opinion, Cardinal Okogie possesses one of the most revolting pens in the history of clergy in Nigeria. He’s a thorn on politicians and those of the clergy and other appendages who branded with reprobate scandals. He detests their pomp, their pride, and their luxuriousness.

Over the years, Cardinal Okogie has mystified both his critics and admirers of the courage that sustained his heart, and the peace that filled his soul, were reflected upon his countenance and struck the beholders. He once volunteered to die in place of a Muslim woman who had been condemned to death by stoning by an Islamic court for adultery.

A man of super intellect, he never hide his belief in an infallible Bible and the consequences of that belief in his conforming behavior to Biblical precepts. Okogie is a solid excellent Christian, a rare gem among his fellow clergy men both at home and abroad.  A man of great power with great piety. He was one of the few cardinal electors in the 2005 papal conclave that selected Pope Benedict XVI.

With a cheerful countenance and more than stoical constancy, he confronts head on the workers of iniquities that continue to annihilate the very people they sworn to serve and protect.

In June 2005 when the police acting on the orders of the federal government, laid siege on 1004 Estate, Victoria Island, Lagos; Bishop Okogie condemned the action saying “If a soul is lost there (1004 Estate), I will not hesitate to call for civil disobedience and beckon the international community against this government.”

The estate has been a subject of dispute between the federal government who had one time sold the property to the highest bidder and consequently asked its occupants who are mostly civil servants to vacate the building.

Like other helpless Nigerians, the Bishop felt like a prisoner in an outworn, obsolete political and theological system. Worried that religious politics would tear Nigeria apart, the revered Bishop warned that no country could remain one when “adherents of a particular religion are being singled out for persecution and denial of their fundamental rights as citizens of this country.”

Addressing newly ordained priests August 2005, the Cardinal said many priests had failed in their responsibility because of their inability to match their belief with actions. In 2006 speaking on the spate of assassinations in the country, the eminent Bishop had this to say: “The assassination of the former justice minister Bola Ige, Dikibo Marshall, Funso Williams and now Ayo Daramola portends a very great danger for our country, because the killers have not been found and prosecuted to deter others…”

On safety and security, he warned that “A nation without security is not a nation… Such a nation slides gradually into jungle justice, barbarism, anarchy and chaos.” “I am no prophet,” continued the Cardinal, “but if care is not taken, the way we are going, there will be many more assassinations before the 2007 elections.” Events that followed however, proved him to be a prophet!

A champion of public education, Cardinal Okogie berated the federal government when seven private universities were approved. He accused government of promoting private education at the expense of public education. “They are (government) subtly killing education in this country and making same costly for parents,” said the Cardinal.

Never recoiling from torments of enemies of progress and accusers of the brethren, Cardinal Okogie never missed the opportunity to condemn the extravagant riches of secular and church office. In June 2007 in Abuja at the Ordination of Seven Missionaries of Society of St. Paul (MSP), the Bishop took a swipe at priests who enriched themselves in God’s name. With biting sarcasm he lashed out at their hypocrisy:

“We need good Priests to carry out the work of God and lead Nigerians to Christ,” he said. “Now you see men of God involving themselves in negative attitude, bad practices such as enriching themselves with material things under the pretence of working in the Lord’s vineyard. Priests of God should bear good fruits that last,” he warned.

He challenged Nigerians to hold their priests accountable. “You must correct the man of God when they are not getting it right. They’re not saints, they are humans… Do not hesitate to call them back when they go astray.”

Okogie, “Dare to be a Daniel” is more than an old gospel song. It is a timeless challenge for the ruling class, the Jet Pastors, and for each new generation of Nigerians, calling them to be God’s “change agents” wherever he might send them or whatever position he might plant them. Okogie’s confidence in God is nurtured by his communication with God. To Okogie, to trust God is to talk to God, and to talk to God is to trust him all the more.

No doubt, Cardinal Okogie has left a sting in the hearts and a gnawing worm in the consciences of the enemies of the people. The lesson from the Cardinal’s life to the Jet Pastors is clear: A godly life is the best advertisement for Christianity.

We wish the people’s priest a retirement full of happiness and fun.
The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters



How You Can Stop God’s Call on Your Husband’s Life.


wife looking at husband on the phone

Recently my husband, John Hagee, surveyed the women of our church and asked the question, “What do women want in a man?” Character traits such as faithfulness, honesty, respect and good communication all figured prominently in their responses. So did romance, a good sense of humor and an ability to be a good provider.

But of the top 10 qualities expressed by the women in our congregation, godliness ranked highest as the primary character trait women desired in a man. Actually, godliness is the sum total of all the top 10 desires women want most in a man.

Perhaps you would agree with what we found. If you do, my first question for you is, “Do you know how to recognize a godly man?”

When I considered the traits that women desired most, immediately I began to think of some of the heroes of the Bible, men in Scripture whom we identify as truly godly. But have you ever wondered what it might be like to be married to one of them?

Husbands of the Bible Noah, the Scriptures say, was a “just and righteous man, blameless in his [evil] generation; Noah walked [in habitual fellowship] with God” (Gen. 6:9, The Amplified Bible). Now, for a moment, imagine what it would be like to be married to him.

He comes home one afternoon with architectural plans in his hands and tells you he has had a visitation from the Lord Himself. The great I AM has commanded him to do something he has never done before–with no budget and no true understanding of its purpose.

Furthermore, he says God is going to destroy all living creatures on the earth with water from the skies–a phenomenon not yet witnessed by any human being. So, he quits his job and begins his assignment.

Then Noah tells you that after his building project is completed, you and he and the children will take a long cruise. However, he doesn’t know exactly where or for how long. And there is one more catch–you must help him gather and care for those who will travel with your family, something about “two by two.”

You will have a thankless job, but he feels very strongly that he should obey the wishes of the Lord, for Jehovah God has promised to provide. Would you willingly work by his side?

Abraham was commanded by God to leave a very comfortable home and depart from his family and his country. God loves Abraham so much that He makes a special covenant with him (see Gen. 17:1-8).

He comes to you and recounts his visit with God. He persuades you to leave the dream house you just built and all that is important to you. He assures you that Yahweh has promised to bless him with descendents that will be too many to count.

Oh, and it gets better! While on your trip to “God only knows where,” Abraham convinces you to act as his sister for his protection. Even though this request from Abraham will put you in imminent danger, you finally agree.

Time passes, and the journey, which has been tough, finds you older now. You have given this man some of the best years of your life. You have a weak moment and determine that at your present age, you probably won’t produce an heir for your husband.

Therefore, you suggest–only once, I might add–that he go into your handmaiden and produce a child with her. Without hesitation he agrees–a little too quickly, if you ask me.

To add insult to injury, your favorite handmaiden, now heavy with your husband’s child, is flaunting her favored status. Would you leave your home and go with this man?

Moses was a man so loved of God that God chose him to lead His people out of bondage. Moses is the man to whom God entrusted His law. What would it be like married to Moses?

Moses is gone days at a time on spiritual mountain retreats without you. When he is home, he is overwhelmed with his task of leading millions of people somewhere, to arrive sometime.

It seems to you that you are hopelessly stuck in the desert. Moses spends most of his time in counseling sessions, trying to solve the chosen people’s problems.

He brings their problems home with him every night. Would you support this man and his ministry?.

David was a man after God’s own heart, a leader among men, a great warrior–but also an adulterer and a murderer and a failure as a father. What would it have been like to be married to him?

All these men have something in common: They were flawed individuals chosen by God to do His will. In order to accomplish their purposes, these men had to have very supportive and godly women by their sides.

Like these men, we are all flawed creatures. But there is a remarkable difference: The blood of a faultless Lamb covers us.

These men lived under the Law; we live under the grace and mercy of our Savior Jesus Christ. It is His mercy that keeps us from getting what we deserve and His grace that gives us what we do not deserve.

Titus 2:11-12 says: “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say ‘No’ to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age” (NIV).

With this understanding of God’s generous outpouring of grace and mercy toward us, I want you to be excited about what the Lord can do in your husband and in your marriage.

What women want in a man may not be as easily attained as we might think. In fact, what women want may not be what God wants them to have.

But He can equip you with what you need in order to be the woman, wife and mother He intended you to be. He can turn your marriage into something that resembles heaven on Earth and your husband into a godly reflection of Himself.

Men After God’s Heart A godly man must have the mind and heart of God. He must be God’s hands and see as He sees. When a godly man sees the hurting and those bound by the ravages of sin, he thinks as God thinks, in terms of love and compassion for the loveless.

On one of our many trips to Israel, John and I were privileged to witness such compassion expressed through godly men. While on our flight to the Holy Land, two of the ministry partners with whom we were traveling shared their testimony with us.

They had accepted Christ while watching my husband on television. They told us of the homosexual lifestyle they had turned away from and the new joy they’d found. Thrilled with their new life, they were now on the trip of a lifetime.

Sadly, because of their past lifestyle, one of them was suffering from AIDS. They were concerned what others on the trip might think, but my husband assured them that all would be fine.

After much prayer, the young man gave my husband permission to tell the others in our group that he was ill and needed their prayers and assistance. I remember my husband asked the Lord to prepare the group for the news regarding our young friend. He prayed, “Father, give them Your ears as they hear this news, and keep them from fear as they respond to this child of God with Your loving heart.”

The next morning during our time of devotion, we told the group of our young friend’s need for healing from this dreaded disease. With tears in their eyes, members of the group came up to him one by one and knelt around him as, together, we agreed in prayer for his healing.

But the most profound moment for me took place at the Garden Tomb. We had a time of worship and then released the people to enter the empty tomb.

One by one they went in. My husband and I were watching these precious pilgrims experience a very solemn moment when something beautiful happened. The young man with AIDS was sitting several yards from the tomb because the large stones of the Garden made it difficult to maneuver his wheelchair.

Two of the men from our group went to him and placed their arms under his body. He anchored his frail arms around their shoulders as they carried him toward the tomb.

The people who were gathered around the doorway made a path for the three men to enter the dark mausoleum. All was quiet as they bowed their heads and prayed. The three men walked out of the tomb with tears flowing down their faces.

My husband and I felt privileged to see a demonstration of the heart of the living God arising out of that empty tomb.

The godly man sees the scarred hands of his Savior when he reaches out with his own hands to his wife, his children, or a stranger in good deeds and kindness.

Finally, a godly man must learn to say no to the world. The world does not recognize the righteousness of the God whom we serve.


Living Words.

For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
Hebrews 4:12

Recommended Reading
Proverbs 4:20-22 ( )

Wildfires race up a mountainside like they are alive; the flames in our fireplace spread the same way. God compared His words to a fire (Jeremiah 23:29) and the disciples on the Emmaus road said Jesus’ words “burned” within them (Luke 24:32).

Listen to Today’s Radio Message ( )

What sets God’s words apart from any other? Moses gave the first clue, telling the Israelites that the word of the covenant “is your life” (Deuteronomy 32:47). Stephen, in his speech to Jewish leaders, describes the words Moses received on Mount Sinai as “living oracles” (Acts 7:38). Finally, the writer to the Hebrews expands the idea of “living” words, saying the “word of God” is a “discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart” (Hebrews 4:12). It’s not that God’s words seem to be alive like fire — they are alive. God is life, His words are life, and they create life in us as the Holy Spirit conforms us to  them.  Life begets life!

As you read the Word of God today, read it with expectancy and anticipation for the changes it will make in you.

The only true reformation is that which emanates from the Word of God.
J. H. Merle d’Aubigné

Revelation 5-9

By David Jeremiah.

Remember to Remember!

I remember the days of old; I meditate on all Your works; I muse on the work of Your hands.
Psalm 143:5

Recommended Reading
Numbers 15:39-40 ( )

Part of aging is memory loss — sometimes it is significant, and other times it is subtle. So we exercise, eat right, lay off the sugar, read, do the crosswords, juggle, play Ping-Pong, and brush our teeth with our opposite hand — all proven to strengthen the brain. But the Israelites had a different memory tool: tassels. They wore tassels on their garments so they could “look upon [ them ] and remember all the commandments of the LORD and do them” (Numbers 15:37-40). Something as simple as a tassel can remind us of God, His Word, and His faithfulness.

Listen to Today’s Radio Message ( )

You may not want to sew tassels on the hem of your garments, but there are plenty of other ways to remind yourself of what God has done in your life. The most permanent reminder is a written record — a diary, a journal, 3″ x 5″ cards, or notes you type on your computer. If Moses had to remind the Israelites to remember their rescue from Egypt (Exodus 13:3), how much more should we be writing down the less dramatic but equally memorable ways God has been faithful to us?

Are you keeping a record? In the challenging days of life, you will be encouraged to look back and remember how God met your needs and answered your prayers.

Philippians 1-4

By David Jeremiah.

Characteristics of Humble People.

by Frank Damazio

A life that honors God honors the principle called humility.Humility is an attitude of being gentle, considerate, kind, and gracious, putting others in front of self. The process of humility begins when you realize that everything is not about you. People who honor humility don’t think less of themselves, they just think of themselves less.

The Bible shows us several examples of humble people, one of those being Moses. Moses described himself as the one who most fully exemplified humility. He did not say that about himself out of pride or arrogance, but out of gratitude to God for the various trials he underwent in order to develop the high level of character he had.

Here are three characteristics of a humble person that can be observed in Moses’ life.

1. Nurtures a broken spirit

To the natural mind, that which is broken is unfit for use and should be thrown away; but to God, brokenness is of high value. A broken spirit quickly recognizes conscience violations as a result of a clear, soft conscience. It quickly discerns what is amiss, like a broken bone out of joint, and quickly makes an adjustment.

A broken spirit is pliable and able to be fashioned. On the other hand, a hard heart is not impressionable – you cannot work on it. A broken heart is soft and easily penetrated. A broken spirit is in a person who is submitted to God, obedient with joy, easily bent to humility, and not reactionary.

2. Receives second chances

Have you ever made a mistake? We are all failures – well, at least all the best of us! People fear failure and think failure is a stigma, that it is final. But it’s not. Failure is the school for humility. It sets up a second chance.

The difference between greatness and mediocrity is often how an individual views a mistake.

3. Does not react to criticism, accusations, or slander

Moses was reproached without cause and falsely accused by his own family. Moses’ response was silence. He did not resent the attack made upon him or attempt in any way to vindicate himself or take revenge.

Take criticism as potentially allowed by God to make you better.Take it as testing what buttons are still active in your carnal nature.

Why We Don’t Need to Prove to Atheists God Exists.

Bible with cross shadow
(© damianeva/Flickr/Creative Commons)

“Behold, I and the children whom the Lord hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the Lord of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion” (Is. 8:18).

Pharaoh asked scornfully, “Who is the Lord?” (Ex. 5:2). At God‘s command, Aaron threw down his rod and it became a snake. Pharaoh’s magicians laughed as their rods also turned into snakes, but the laughter died when Aaron’s snake (rod) devoured theirs.

God proclaimed, “I will multiply my signs and my wonders in the land of Egypt” (Ex. 7:3). As 10 plagues ravaged the land, Pharaoh, his magicians and all of Egypt came to know beyond a doubt who the Lord is.

God is multiplying His signs and wonders in our generation.

Just as in the days of Moses, God is revealing Himself to the scoffers, the doubters, the cynics and the sinners who scornfully ask, “Who is the Lord?”

You do not need to prove or defend God to skeptics. Simply lift up the name of Jesus and speak about your faith with simplicity and clarity. Love your enemies, thereby demonstrating who God is to them.

Lord, I trust You to reveal Yourself through signs and wonders. Let Your enemies see who You are. Amen.


Rod Parsley is a well-known pastor and Charisma House author.

With Dream, It Is Possible To Poison Sleep: Ode To Madiba! By Gbenro Olajuyigbe.

By Gbenro Olajuyigbe

On your 93rd  birthday anniversary in 2011, I wrote that you were ‘Son of a Local chief who ended up becoming Father of many Nations through perseverance, dogged struggle and indubitable  power of vision and commitment to a cause. Knocked down, but never knocked out. Wounded, yet your spirit remained unbroken. Personification of courage in a world  where pressure from bellies have put many in captivity. Thrown into jail but your spirit triumphed in liberty. Madiba taught the world that the most potent form of revenge is forgiveness. Like flower that shed flagrance on the foot that bruised it, he gathered his racist foes with mercy; even when providence delivered their necks  with sharp sword to him on platter of gold. Indeed when you serve others through self-denial, the World will serve you in the end. Mandela’s 95 Years on earth is a living proof even as the UN has since declared every July 18, his birth date as an International Day now.

Since the fiercest  of storms  could not put off this Candle,  I believe that there is no single grave that can  contain a person whose life becomes a candle that drive away darkness of oppression and slavery.  Even when they are buried, in the hearts  of many who hold their liberty and dignity to them, their deeds , as gushing streams of history ,flow out  to those who hate or hug them, from generation to generations, to give flesh to the courageous spirit that can neither be tempered by death nor  be sunk by  circumstance of  mere mortal absence. Dr. Nelson Mandela; this (was) is your life! You taught us that:

With dream, it is possible to poison sleep

With courage, it is possible to tame fear

With perseverance, it is possible to overcome oppression

With resistance, it is possible to defeat injustice

With humility, it is possible cast out spirit of vengeance

With self sacrifice, it is possible to put tyrants to flight

With commitment and determination, it is possible to lead people out of slavery

With purposeful living, it is possible to mock death
It was a glorious ninety-five (95) years of personifying humanity. Like Moses in the Bible, your song was ‘let my people go’. Like Amos, also in the Bible, your music was ‘Let justice roll down like waters ; and righteousness, like a mighty stream’. You spent all your life in deviance of errors and terror that were and are still passion of most African Rulers. You were conscious of honour, integrity and the destination  to which you were leading  your people. The triumphs of your spirit testified that soldiers without guns have greater hope than the armour bearers of falsehood and oppression. To historians, you have become the source of courage; and to generations yet unborn, you are now the standard of hope for humanity!

Adieu Madiba!

Gbenro Olajuyigbe is the Human Security Manager for ActionAid Nigeria.  He is based in Abuja.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of SaharaReporters

Nelson Mandela – The Moses Of Black Africans By Chris Aniedobe.

When a rejected stone becomes the corner stone, it is invariably the doings of God. From improbable to possible, so does God make things and leaves signs for the wise to see his mighty works.

Before Obama became President, I called it. I did not need any Oracle to tell me that when a guy rises from obscurity to prominence like that, that it is the doings of a higher power. To leave no doubt about it, even the elements campaigned for Obama who traveled the most improbable roads: black, African, single parent, community organizer, one term Senator, and then President.

When the Oracles of Egypt foretold Moses and Pharaoh decided to slaughter new born Jewish males, hoping to eliminate Moses, little did he know that he would be raising the same Moses in his household. And through Moses, God humiliated all the gods of Egypt and laid the foundation for the coming of the kingdom of God. These are the workings of God.

When I think of Nelson Mandela, I think “O what a wonderful God we serve. How from age to age he works wonders through the hands of men although many wise men see it not.” From obscurity to prisoner to President to World Leader, only God does things like that.

At 95, Nelson Mandela deserves to sleep. Ages henceforth shall remember him as the black Moses.  Out of the dense fog of racism, he led all blacks across the Red Sea. He was built like a staff, the same staff that Moses carried, the staff of God. Straight and unbendable was his determination to not bow to any indignities and until his death, he bore the highest and the noblest testimony to the human spirit as one created by God to be free from oppression and charged by the same God to live in harmony with all creation.

But there is more. Nelson Mandela wrote the last Chapter in a book in which many Igbo slaves co-wrote. All across the new world, Igbo slaves chose death rather than bow to oppression. They chained their hands, neck and feet, but their spirits were never bound. All that was found in those slaves that chose death over oppression was encapsulated in Mandela as light for a world darkened by hatred and brightened by love.

The last hundred years have seen such great men as Mikhail Gorbachev, Martin Luther King, Jr., Pope John Paul II, Chinua Achebe, Dim Odumegwu Ojukwu, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Mohammed Ali, Michael Jordan, Edson Arantes do Nascimento, Mother Theresa, Barrack Obama. They all however lived in the age of Nelson Mandela.

Somewhere in another obscure place, God I am sure is weaving another tapestry of improbables, around another improbable human being, to meet the challenges that lay ahead for a world that has turned against itself.  Our legs are no longer tied. Our necks are no longer yoked. Our hands are free but our spirits have become bound by concupiscence and materialism and we have no more need for God. Nelson Mandela smothered the last stronghold of racism, but something greater than racism, more pernicious than hate, more malignant than rabid cells, is permissive liberalism that has shackled the human spirit.


I pray that God who has made human beings the living stones with which he builds his houses and has deigned to make Nelson Mandela a corner stone, will raise from among his living stones, one who will liberate the human spirit from the shackles of permissive liberalism so that as his chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, his possession, … and from East to West and North to South, the whole earth might declare the praises of him who calls all people from darkness to light. “No longer slaves,” he said, “I call you friends.” Then Lord, let our spirits be as unbound as you made it even as you welcome Nelson Mandela into your Kingdom of light so that he may join the eternal Chief Priest as priest for all ages of humanity henceforth.





What Is in You?.

O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. Matthew 12:34


A rotten egg sailed past Buddy Robinson, an old Pentecostal preacher, and struck the deacon standing next to him. As the stench of the egg covered the deacon, he started cussing up a storm.

A second egg caught Brother Robinson right in the middle of his forehead, and as it trickled down his face, he began shouting and dancing all over the platform.

The deacon said, “I don’t understand it. When I was hit with the egg, I went to cussing; but when that rotten egg hit you, you went to praising.”

Brother Robinson, who stuttered like Moses, gave his reply: “You already had the c-c-c-cuss in you. When that egg hit you, it just knocked the c-c-c-cuss out of you. But when I got hit with a rotten egg, I had p-p-p-praise in me, and it just knocked the p-p-p-praise right out of me.”

Whatever is in you will come out of you in a time of stress, trial, or crisis. Deposit the Word in your heart that you will not sin against God (Psalm 119:11).

Jesus, purify and cleanse me. With Your baptism
of fire, burn away all the chaff in my life. Amen.


The power of life-encouraging words…

By Pastor Bobby Schuller

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but harsh words cause quarrels.” 
-Proverbs 15:1

Words are incredibly powerful. This ministry was built, not just by hard work, but also by the words of my grandpa and other people saying to each other, “We should build a church that, when you’re inside, you feel like you’re outside in the beauty of God‘s creation.”

Words inspire people, lift people up, encourage people, give new ideas, and cast vision. Words also put people down, injure people, hurt people, and stop people in their tracks.

People in the Bible understood the power of words. Moses couldn’t enter the Promised Land because he hit the rock instead of speaking to it. God was showing Moses that the new reality, the new power, wasn’t in violence; it was in words. And Jacob did everything he possibly could just to get his father Esau to say a word of blessing over him because he knew that those words had incredible power to bless his life.

Many of us carry personal memories of insults that parents or mentors said to us that still pain us today. Some of us also carry with us life-encouraging blessings, maybe spoken years ago by someone older who loved us and saw something in us.

Words create, words destroy. Words are powerful.

Prayer: Dear Lord, help me to choose my words wisely. Let them be pleasant to hear and bring life to those they fall upon. Amen.

Reflection: How do you bless others with your words?

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