What it takes; Sequel

 

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After the post on  What it takes, I proceeded to ask few unmarried men their views or convictions on what it takes for a man to make a woman his wife as promised in the post. The views expressed here were either typed and sent to me via social media or recorded and sent to me to be translated into writing. These are views of unmarried christian men and it is posted here with their full permission and awareness.

View 1:

“Almost every person is influenced by Society and their environment both man and woman… let me use myself as example, before I came to know the Lord, my ideal wife was;

1) A gorgeous woman that will sexually satisfy me

2). A woman that my friends and family will approve off. But now that I’m a Christian my ideal wife is a woman who seeks to be like Jesus day in and day out just like I do in spite of outward appearance and what friends and family thinks. And I have come to this conclusion because of the teachings of the bible”.

View 2

“First and foremost, I’d want the LORD’S blessing. The second thing is the endorsement of leaders, parents and family; people who I allow to speak into my life. I wouldn’t like to run into this decision because of passion, but would rather exercise patience and allow the LORD to direct me.

I believe this can be likened to a father wanting good wife for his son;he presents her to him and ask him about her.In the same way, God will present her to me and say son; what do you think? Hence, as Paul said in  2 Corinthians 5: 16; about knowing or evaluating  people not according to the flesh but the Spirit, I’d like to know her in the Spirit.

I also believe a man should pursue and initiate love and then a woman responds to the love initiation or pursuance. Another thing is the focus should not be on similarity or difference. Rather, someone that I can run the same race  with. I want her to be bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh.

In summary, the biggest thing to me is the move of God. I”ll pursue only if God wants me to; like Moses; am not moving if God is not coming with me”.

View 3:

“Major thing for me will be clearance from the LORD. This is something, I  have witnessed in the life of  others; a clearance from the LORD in terms of confirmations. I would seek  confirmation from the LORD by putting several fleeces before the LORD with specific requests for confirmation. Added to this will be talking with the leaders in one’s life and asking for approval.

Finally, the peace from the LORD will be icing on the cake to reassure and confirm that the woman or marriage is God’s will for my life”.

Yes, I know the underlying theme is biased; revolving around God and JESUS Christ. What were you expecting? A christian’s allegiance and loyalty is to the master and savior and LORD JESUS and rightly so, his influence and guidance in all aspects of life. Let me ask you, If you had a very important exam to take and you were informed of someone who had the manual to prep you to pass the exam, would you not seek him out? Yep, you would! Why then will anyway bypass the God who created man and life to able to “pass” and live life in abundance?

He quoted a proverb: “‘Can a blind man guide a blind man?’ Wouldn’t they both end up in the ditch? An apprentice doesn’t lecture the master. The point is to be careful who you follow as your teacher. (Luke 6:39-40)

What it takes

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Valentine’s Day was celebrated by many last week; both single and married. Some heard the; “Will you marry me?” phrase and ended up engaged to be married! Others have waited in the same relationship for years to hear the question popped, yet another valentine has passed with no ring. Maybe… just maybe he wants to propose on my birthday or  our anniversary. : )

What does it really take for a man to decide or arrive at the conclusion that a woman is to be his wife? I have wondered and rhetorically addressed this question to myself in the past as well. I may not be the first or last to pose this question to self or to others, yet it is worth pondering or asking. As such, I ‘ll be doing a blog post later on the various opinions and answers, single and married men give to this question. (It’ll be interesting, I promise!) For now, let me share a few insights with you.

Many people might without much thought hurriedly try to answer this question. Some might say; when a man finds a decent woman, he will marry her. Question; what is the definition of decent? Is it “well-kept”, “non- whoring”, hardworking etc? If yes, then why are many “decent women” including myself not married? If it really comes down to that definition and school of thought, then many women “over qualify” especially those in churches in their early 20’s to late 40’s who are single and”decent”, so why are they not married???

Another group might answer; when a man finds a good woman, he will marry her. Excuse me! What does that imply? All non married women are not “good”? And what exactly does good mean? Is this supposed definition of good universal or subjective? Fact of the matter is, all these ideologies about why or what it takes for a man to make a woman his wife is quite erroneous of you ask me. Why?

In the first place, when a woman asks this; more often than not, it is from a place of disappointment, betrayal or worse self-pity. Hence the implication that one is “not decent” or “good enough” is both distorted and damaging to the person hood of a woman. It tramples on the self-worth and value of a woman because it literally says; just because you don’t have a ring on your finger, you don’t qualify to be called good or decent.The implication runs further than this, in that; it refutes Genesis 1:31; which says God saw all that he had done and called it good.

It is quite annoying and sad that the image and worth of a woman is associated or linked to her marital status or a piece of metal or stone on her finger. Take a look at this scenario; for the same pair of jeans made of the same quality and material, jean A might cost $100 and the jean B cost $20 mainly because, the $100 has a designer logo stamped on it. Now tell me, is the $100 jeans “better” than the $20 jeans? Did you say, no? Well, exactly my point! The designer or name on the jeans gives the jeans its price tag and “prestige”. Rightly so, the maker of the universe, the LORD GOD Almighty gives every human his/her value; whether single or married. So the value or worth of a woman cannot and is not in her marital status but in creator, God.Your worth is in your designer and not the store.

Your worth is in your designer and not the store  

Added to this, in Genesis 2 :18-25, we find that a man has to see his need for a suitable helper or wife to receive one.

A man has to see his need for a suitable helper or wife to receive one.

So in basic terms, it is not a woman’s responsibility or task to make a man see his need for her but really; a self-awareness of a man as a living being to see his need for a wife.In Verse 22; we realize that the woman was made out of man and then she was brought to him! 😊 If I can take this further, after a man realizes his need for a suitable helper or wife, he also ought to have that which will allow a suitable helper to be drawn out of him. In other words, you can only give of what you have. “When the cloud is full of rain, it pours or empties itself”- Ecclesiastes 11:3.

After a man realizes his need for a suitable helper or wife, he also ought to have that which will allow a suitable helper to be drawn out of him
The best part about this is, it was the creator God himself, who initiated and completed the institution of marriage. He saw man’s need, provided or formed woman out of the man to meet his need and then BROUGHT her to the man. Ladies, let the burden roll off you! If you are in Christ Jesus, then trust that he will bring you to a man who is also in him, totally submitted to him. It is not about being good or decent. It is about whose you are and who you are.

It is about whose you are and who you are

You belong to Christ and him alone. He made you and he loves you unconditionally. You are in the world but not of the world, therefore refuse to conform to the standards of the world that spells out; ” the what to do or be to get married” as reminded in Romans 12:2.

Finally, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart;do not depend on your own understanding.

Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take”.Proverbs 3:5-6

Awakening love

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“She was filled with so much excitement. This was it! The man of her dreams! Exactly what she imagined and prayed for! And the best part; he looked similar to the guy she had been seeing in her dreams for the past 3 months.She couldn’t wait to start planning her wedding…colors..venue ooh so much to do. But oh wait; he didn’t even ask for her number. Didn’t he know she was to be his wife? Well, he was probably tired or overwhelmed. Sooner or later, he’d realize that they are meant to be. For now, she must start planning their future dates and the big day of their marriage.”

Do not awaken love until its proper time

Do not awaken love until its proper time; Song of Solomon 8:4 , Song of Solomon 3:5. There must be a reason why the same message is repeated in one book of the Bible. Most likely due to the fact that women are more prone or enticed to awaken love before its proper time.

 Women are naturally caretakers and “fixers”

Women are naturally caretakers and “fixers” if you would. It is not unnatural for us to think that we can help people especially the ones in our lives to straighten up and get their lives together. Hence many times, often than not we get ourselves into relationships and situations we have no business in or with.

You might have experienced it or at least witnessed a situation whereby a woman is so sure, she has met the man of her dreams but in the long run it isn’t so. It becomes more complicated when you believe God showed or directed you to the said person. It is necessary to question your motives, thoughts and perceptions. Are you really sure God has shown you he or she is the one? Are you attracted to the God, the ministry or the image you see in the person or are you really attracted to the person? Is attraction even enough?

– Are they giving any signals or have they showed interest? or is it just your perception?Remember the last time..a guy was interested in you but it totally irritated you? He probably feels the same way. If he is not pursuing..he’s definitely not interested.If God said he’s really the one for you..he’d speak to him. He spoke to Mary and Joseph both because he had purpose…Are you making up purpose!..daydreaming and giving necessary grace…excuses such as;

– A very pathetic but outright  lie that we say is that; He really needs me..he just doesn’t know. Honey..when a baby who knows “nothing” cries because it wants food..warmth and all… how can a grown up man not know he needs you???

– He is shy……I need to help him. When purpose and destiny joins..there’s no shyness. Eve was the first human Adam saw  but he spoke to her as soon as he saw her and “knew” her.No one had to teach him nothing! He had courage because that’s what he wanted and needed so he sought it. When a man sees what he wants, he goes for it.He will work 14 years like Jacob did if he has to because he loved her.

– He is not ready yet! Exactly! He is not ready for you. He might not be in the right season for relationship or marriage. If he really cherishes you, he’ll make a move to avoid losing you even if he’s not ready..he’ll let his intentions be known to you and let you know what he is dealing  with. If he is not ready? Give him space, allow him to get ready. You can’t rush his need or maturity. You can’t make anyone ready.

It is interesting that there’s a theology out there that says God doesn’t choose a mate and all… It is quite interesting though, because  if  you can trust God for salvation. which is eternal,why can’t you trust God for an earthly temporal relationship. Obviously God is not going to send you a spouse wrapped up in ribbons but if you ask him and trust him to choose..he’ll lead you to one whose destiny is connected to yours. Marriage is about destiny not delusions.

Okay, Let’s look at scenario,if you pray for someone to be healed and they get healed..do you say God helped me heal or will you say God healed this person? Exactly! You will say,God healed the person. So if God leads you through prayer to a man or woman after his own heart…did God help you choose or God chose for you? I hope you get my point.

Sometime ago, I began to get the impression that God was leading me to be joined to a guy, I knew in marriage. I prayed about it. I didn’t say a word to the guy and literally watched as he told me was getting married. Was I foolish to have kept quiet? I don’t think so because each time, I asked God what to do, he said ” Be still and Know, I am God”. Did I get it wrong or did God get it wrong? Obviously, God does not ever get it wrong! He knows the end from the beginning.

Was it God’s will for us to be married? I doubt so because God’s purpose and will always comes to pass as we surrender to him. So even though, I had the perception he was to be my husband,it could be my own desires or the enemy messing with me so I can doubt God’s faithfulness and lose trust in God in that area of my life. Remember John 10:10 ; the enemy comes to kill, steal and destroy.

There is a divine order found in Genesis 2; God presented Eve to Adam not the other way round.Anything done out-of-order is disastrous

There is a divine order found in Genesis 2; God presented Eve to Adam not the other way round.Anything done out-of-order is disastrous.When the winds come too far; it’s called a tornado. When the waves of the sea exceed its stopline; it’s called a flood.When a woman has a baby before it’s time, it’s called a “premie” or premature. When  you awaken love before it’s time; it’s called “disaster in waiting”

The Edge

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In a flash, I saw the hand of God lift up from my life…. I realized my folly and the deception of my heart. I was laid bare, exposed and uncovered because the hand that held kept and shielded me had just lifted and I had been graced to have a glimpse of it. My heart was heavy, I was ashamed and vulnerable because his gracious hand had lifted. I knew then and there only he can save because I had come to the edge of the cliff… I needed a savior. So, I called out to him sincerely to burn it all out, all the pride and deception of my heart and leave only him. He was all I needed and all I had.

Continue reading “The Edge”

The Brewery

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I ain’t no expert at brewing but I do know that the “strength’ or “goodness ” of an alcoholic drink is very much dependent on the fermentation process. The fermentation process involves the chemical breakdown of the malt extract by bacteria, yeast or other microorganism and the subsequent production of carbon dioxide(CO2)  and ethanol/alcohol as byproducts. It is interesting to note that the word ferment also means to incite or stir up.

You might wonder where am going with all of this… Well, this blog post is not about how to make good beer at home or teach you the science of fermentation. On the contrary, it is about an ageless enemy of humans. Wait! I am not talking about the devil.(Even though he is very well, the root and the agent of fear and it’s one of his famous devices/weapons) I am referring to the evil of fear which is common to all and sundry. Follow along as I tell you bits of my experience with this evil.

When I was a little girl ; ) I wanted to be an epitome of perfection not in looks or anything but I wanted to be perfect in my decision-making even as a little girl and throughout my teenage years. I did not want to take wrong turns that would disappoint God, my parents and anyone who mattered to me. Unknowingly, I had began a brewery of fear in my life. As my adult years began to form, my “little brewery”  also grew as I introduced the microorganism and  yeast of “expectation of people”(about how my life should be and what ought to happen at certain periods of my life) and “self pride”(on how I had not made a blunder of my life in any major decision I had taken yet)

Before long, I added to my brewery; the fear of marrying the “wrong person”. Yes, I do believe there is a wrong and right person based on this criteria; the right person is your destiny helper and vice versa while the wrong person is your destiny thwart-er/breaker or destiny wrecker. Either ways, I hope you get my point. The fear of marrying the wrong person became so much of a concern that, its fermentation process became excellent! The microorganisms and yeast did well to release tons of carbon dioxide (confusion) and ethanol (stimulant & euphoric sensations). I hope, I haven’t lost you…Hang in there with me.                                   

I hold the belief that everything in life whether living or not has a smell to it.(You don’t have to agree or disagree). Anyways, sooner than later the sweet smell or stench of my brewery and incitement of the  fear of marrying the wrong person drew me to someone or someone to me. When I began talking to and eventually dated this man, my fear did not dissipate , rather the by -products of the fermentation process doubled. The CO2 (confusion) and ethanol (stimulation(s) and euphoria of having met “Mr Right”) were like the tidal waves of a storm;  up and down almost all the time.

When the relationship fell apart, I began to question my ability to make good decisions, something hitherto I had prided myself in (Pride definitely goes before fall as the Bible said in Proverbs 16:18). God began to reveal my heart to me as I pondered the events of the relationship. It was during this “heart surgery”, that I realized that I had misplaced my identity; you can read about this in an earlier blog post – Single ladies,ring on it? and also found out that the fear which I had harbored and stirred up led me to the “wrong person” like Job said in  Job 3:25 ; that what he feared; came upon him. Fear is not of God, rather God’s perfect love when established in your heart casts out fear 1 John 4:18. God’s truth of his faithfulness and perfect love subsequently set me free from this fear through God’s perfect love from the flavor/smell of the fear of marrying the wrong person.

In life we are all brewers. We brew and drink from our own brewery. Someone can influence what you brew but no one can brew for you or dictate what you brew because you are the first to taste of what you brew.If you don’t like what you brew, you can always change it. The choice is yours.

In life we are all brewers. We brew and drink from our own brewery.

What are you brewing or stirring up in your life?

Your fear might be with a different thing or in a different area of your life.. It can be fear of being alone, fear of cancer, death or even lack. Fear is a constant battle because fear is a proven and effective tool of the enemy and he’s not going to give up just because in one area of your life, you defeat him by Christ’s petfect love. He’ll keep bringing it up in different aspects  and areas of your life. However, the good news is that, but we have a high priest; Christ Jesus who is able to help us in our weakness.(Hebrews 4:15). He is faithful to cleanse you from every toxic effect of anything brewed in your life and able to make you whole again.

 

What’s up with the Wait?

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The verse above is very common in  christian circles. However,, the problem is that it has not really been understood and has been quite misinterpreted many times.

It is necessary to establish that we all have to wait for someone or something at various points in our life.A pregnant woman waits for the birth and arrival of her child, a student waits for the day of graduation, a christian on their death-bed awaits eternity in heaven.

Whether you are “good” or “bad”; you have to wait. It’s not an option, you just gotta have to especially as life doesn’t always go as planned.

The focus of this piece will be on waiting as a single or unmarried person.You and I had our “timelines” while growing up. Fill in the blank spaces; “I will have a career and secure job by age___”. I will be married and have kids by age ___”. We draw these timelines based on our own perception and understanding of what we think tomorrow holds. We forget that his ways and plans are not out ways and that our God is not limited by time.

I personally believe waiting especially when you are single has been built on a lot of humanistic understanding instead of God’s point of view. We have been told by prominent ministers and speakers to wait because;.

  1. You  deserve better.

God saw all that he has created and said it was good (Genesis 1:31). So when we say “better”; what are we exactly insinuating? Do we just mean the superficial things; better looks, better finances, better education/career, better christian? (Is there really something such as this? I mean; are not all of us saved by grace). I totally get it and understand that there are levels of spiritual maturity and it’s quite necessary to marry someone who can help you grow instead of receding. Question is what is better in the sight and infinite knowledge of God? I do know and understand that we are not to casr our pearls before swines else they’ll trample upon it ;Matthew 7:6. It is without argument that we are not be unequally yoked either.(2 Corinthians 6:14). So is the definition of  better just the next gal or guy “better” than your ex or???

 2. Because you are not ready or if you are , God is preparing your spouse who is not ready.

So for one, I know and understand God is not slow (1 Peter, God is not slow verse).If we really believe, he is not slow then why would he let one person be ready and the other not. I know you are saying; God is not a dictator and so he allows us as individuals to make our own choices. Yet, I ask, is it not God who works in us to both will and work for his good pleasure? ( Phillipians 2:13). So what’s the deal with you not being ready or your spouse not being ready? Some will say, character formation,spiritual growth, finances etc. To that, I’ll answer that many are married that you can attest to yourself that even as a single person,you have “better”(very subjective) character and spiritual maturity. Okay, I understand,that this probably is or can pose a problem to their marriage. Hence, the argument of you or your spouse not being ready is very “shaky”. This then leads to the “truth” that we don’t wait in our singleness for a man or a spouse but we wait on the LORD.

3.You are waiting for a spouse

The third point is the most heart wrenching humanistic foundation that has been laid.I was quite surprised when the LORD revealed to my spirit that we do not wait for someone or something. We wait for God, (Psalm 20:7). You are not waiting for a man to complete you or to make you whole. Yes, God saw that it was not good for Adam to be alone. In Genesis 2:18, God said he’d create a helper not a savior. A man won’t fix your life if it’s in mess. Yes he is a helper and can help in certain ways and aspects; spiritually, financially, sexually and emotionally. Am I saying marriage is not good? A definite no! Did God institute it, does he endorse it as being between a man and a woman, does he honor it? Check ; Genesis 2:24, Hebrews 13:4 and 1 Timothy 4:3

Marriage is good but you are not to sit or go about waiting for a spouse. I have personally realized that whenever my focus shifts to this erroneous thought of waiting for a man;  I am easily presented with the temptation and   evil of restlessness of ; “how much longer’? “Is he the one”? all these create fertile grounds which look innocent in its initial stages but before long plunge you deep into sin.

You are waiting for God and his goodness. You are waiting on his promises and the revelation of who he is and has called you to be. Am I in any way saying; do not think about marriage or prepare for marriage. No! No! But your hope and trust  is to be in the LORD and not in man. So, what does the goodness of the LORD look like? It is unfathomable. He told Moses; his goodness was his glory .(Exodus 33:18-19). His glory, was that which made Moses’s face shine continuously. How does that translate into your own life? I have met single women who say they don’t believe they have being called to marriage. My reaction is one of surprise and awe as I probe further into their conviction. Surprised because; prior to these encounters, I had not thought of  the possibility of not being called to marriage. Awed because; I respect their commitment and belief that this is God’s will for their life. Thus, for one person; the goodness of the LORD will be expressed in marriage while it might not being for another.

I know you have a question for me. I’ll answer you. I don’t feel  or believe that I have being called to a life of single-hood. I believe marriage is part of God’s plan for my life. Whether that is today or tomorrow should not be my problem as I wait. If God can make and hold the stars,then he can hold your heart to trust and lean on him in all of your ways as you wait on him.

Are you ready to wait on God or human?

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Single ladies…ring on it?

 

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Every little girl’s dream right from when she can talk is to be “chosen”. To be loved and cherished. The dream of walking down the aisle in white with splendor and gracefulness is born. Every wedding detail and plan is constructed as the years go by through adolescence into adulthood. The one thing that is quite hard to plan for is the kind of ring and the kind of man who will put it on your precious finger. : )

Subconscious…Subconsciously these plans are made. Some fall out through the years and  experiences. However, the power and impact of the subconscious cannot be underestimated. Proverbs 23:7a (ASV); “For as he thinketh within himself, so is he” You eventually become or encounter whatever you think and meditate upon, good or bad.This is my story.

Like every little girl, I had my own ideas of what my wedding would be like. All I had to do was to find that ring and of course the one who had the ring. Quite simple… Through my early adulthood, I continually thought to myself whenever I was being pursued by a man was “all he has to do is to get that ring” and he would have won my heart. I  had erroneously  connected the value and worth of my heart and destiny with a ring and the man that had it without realizing it.

Time went by as I unconsciously nursed this seed of error until it blossomed and manifested. I met him. The one who had the ring. He had the ring and so the assumption was he was “the one”.After all, I had wrongly connected the value of my heart and destiny with a ring and whoever brought it.The seed of idolatry of a ring had grown and was ready to bear its fruit. On the night of the proposal, I was quite excited but peace eluded me. I didn’t think much of it because I thought I was just a little overwhelmed. I loved my ring. I had made it an idol in my heart even before I had it. I now felt obligated to the relationship to make it work and to see the rest of the wedding plans happen.

A ring is a symbol of love, commitment and union and can be likened unto a seal. A seal is defined according to Oxford dictionary as; “A device or substance that is used to join two things together so as to prevent them from coming apart or to prevent anything from passing between them” So literally, a ring enforces or strengthens the substance of a relationship. Rightly so, the  Holy Spirit is likened unto a seal in 2 Corinthians 1:22(NCV) “He put his mark on us to show that we are his, and he put his Spirit in our hearts to be a guarantee for all he has promised”.  God’s mark, seal and ring on his sons and daughters is the Holy Spirit and he is the first installment and guarantee for all he has promised in his word.

In translation, the ring I received was an image of what was to come. However, as time passed by, peace was still distant and things began to look hazy. Yet the shrine of idolatry in my heart wanted to hold on and maintain the status quo. What would I tell family and friends? What I had idolized had become a trap of bondage robbing me of peace and joy. In his mercies and kindness, the LORD began to show me the deceitfulness of my own heart, my idolatry of a ring and the pit of frustration I had dug as a result of the misplacement of my identity. He was not harsh or rough with me because his mercy triumphs judgment and he drew me out of despair and bondage into his love and peace.

I no longer have the ring. I had paid a price enough for it; the loss of my peace and misplacement of my identity in Christ Jesus. Fulfillment, joy and peace is not in man or things even a ring. Righteousness, joy and peace is only in the Holy Spirit, God’s seal of ownership and guarantee of  his promises and faithfulness to us as daughters and heirs of his kingdom.

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