Month: March 2021

Authority

Authority

This world always presents numerous attractions before us, in an attempt to lead us away from
the whole reason we were created by God. God has instructed us to love and worship Him with all our hearts, while walking in obedience. That is the whole duty of man. God has always intended for us to inherit His heavenly kingdom. He has a love for us incomparable to anything we can fathom. However, often the needs of the flesh and human mind draw us away from the focus of God. Our success lies in our realisation that God indeed has a perfect plan for us. We have to overcome our flesh and start to seek what that perfect plan entails, not only demonstrating our love for God through our words, but through our actions.

 

When you start to worship knowing who is God is, you will be able to understand His power and
authority over you. If we take the disciples of Jesus as an example, Jesus told them to come and
follow Him so that they would be fishers of men. His word was enough to move them into action and they obeyed. In your worship, you need to understand God’s expectations of you. Understanding the power relationship between God and man is vital. Humility gives you the ability to lay your life down in surrender only to God. It gives you the grace to put God’s instruction above your human understanding or opinion. We are empowered to walk in obedience even if we may not agree with the path God decides upon. Empowerment comes through our knowledge and understanding of the word of God. We become the individuals whom God wants us to be without a reliance on other people or things we use as “crutches.” It gives us the independence to be proactive in our worship without constant persuasion or instruction from peers.

If we look at the Israelites during the time of Joshua, they had developed “crutches” to rely on in the form of idols, instead of God. Joshua’s message to pledge their loyalty only to God was not only a warning, but an opportunity for them to change their ways. It was a message of complete submission to the authority of God. Authority is the power to be able to get someone to do something. For example, at the work place people are not told everyday that they need to be on time or how to perform the duties. Instead, there is an understanding between the employer and the employee developed at the start of employment through a written contract that outlines all expectations. The employer gains authority over the employee. As such, employees need not be reminded of their duties because there is an expectation to work as according to the contract. If compliance is lacking, certain interventions are then taken. The authority of the workplace is such that you automatically work without constant supervision. Therefore, submitting to authority is interlinked with a certain level of fear for the consequences should you not comply. Sadly, christians of today do not apply the same principles in their worship. That is why we often find that people will comply to their work place, but not to the things of God. God should be the authority we seek to live under.
Submitting to God’s authority equals empowerment.

You will no longer need persuasion from your pastor or peers to do what God wants you to do. Once you understand that authority, you will start to seek the answers in His word. With every circumstance you encounter, you will search deeper through the scriptures to find out the true meaning and solution. As previously established, the Israelites in the time of Joshua lacked a true understanding of the authority that had delivered them from Pharaohs hand. The word of God has power and authority, but only to the extent to which we as individuals allow it. Most people want to use the power of the word of God by quoting verses from the bible, but they themselves do not want to bow down to what the word is saying. Anyone can quote from the bible, but how it is implemented in our lives is different. Being able to do what the word says enables us to use the power of the word in whatever circumstances that may arise.

Deuteronomy 8:1-3 – God has the ability to speak anything into existence. He can make a difficult
situation bearable. He provided manna to the Israelites, food never seen before. Whatever need
you have or challenge you are going through, you have to find God. He makes all things possible.
Do not seek the end product, but you need the manufacturer of the products instead. Was Isaac
not instructed to remain where he was and plant on dry ground instead of going to Egypt? In his
obedience, did he not harvest 100 fold? God made the impossible possible. What Isaac needed
was not what Egypt could offer him. It was neither good soil nor rain but God Himself. When the
word of God is activated and manifests in us, we walk in abundance. What comes from the mouth
of God is stronger than what we can see with our naked eye. To those observing Isaac, they probably were at a loss as to why he was planting seeds on dry ground. Because they did not have the same conviction or understanding as Isaac, they could not comprehend his actions.
We see the same principle being taught by Jesus in Matthew 4:4. Truly man does not live on
bread alone, but what comes from the mouth of God. As such, even if God’s instruction seems
difficult or impossible, we must still act upon it. God makes all things possible.
In conclusion, take this time to reflect on your way of thinking. Do not allow your opinion or lack of faith to overpower the authority of God in your life. Many people quote 1 John 4:4 but fail to reflect on what is truly within them. Is it God, or is it self? God cannot dwell within you unless you submit to his authority. In John 21:6, we learn that by humbling themselves and submitting to Jesus’ authority through obedience, the disciples caught more fish than their nets could hold.

Therefore, we can only tap into the authority when we humble ourselves to it. The word of God is the counsel and mind of God. Let us see the word of God as something that we have to live by everyday and to give in to what it says. Then and only then will we be able to use the word of God with all its power.

Transformation

Let me start by asking you this, what is your first thought or action at the start of the day? As a
Christian it is important for your life to be a reflection of the word of God. One cannot merely wait for
a single day in the week to then engage in hearing His word. Seeking God should be a daily routine.
Before we engage in anything else in the day, we need to take the time to hear what God has to say
to us through His word. If we allow God to speak to us at the start of the day, then we have guidance
for the rest of it. The choice is for us to make use of such an opportunity presented to us. God should
be the first voice we hear, the first one we communicate with before all else.

By prioritising Him in the morning, we are essentially inviting Him to take control of the day to come. Knowing and understanding that we are His children, allows us to make God our priority.
Previously we explored the concept of “becoming,” and how undergoing this process is
transformational. Usually if you want to change your character to become better in some way, it
involves undergoing a process of change. For example, if you are not a Christian and you want to be
one, there is a transformation that happens for you to transition from one phase to the other. This
transformation is what makes you become who you are aspiring to be, or someone God always
intended you to become. If you are the kind of person that expects change by merely hearing the
word without any contribution on your part, then you are mistaken. There are certain things that you
have to demonstrate that will bring about the change that you want to see. You must accept and
apply the word of God without any resistance for resistance stunts growth.
Today, many are only christian by name. They only go to church and hear the word, but it doesn’t
touch them enough to initiate the change that they need to undergo. If previous ungodly behaviours
are still presenting now that you are born again, then transformation has not yet occurred within
you. For example, if a person was known for gossiping, even if they have a desire to change, yet still
find themselves gossiping, then they have not truly allowed the word of God to manifest within
them. Ultimately, there is a transformational process you have to go through to become a true
christian. That’s why we have two different categories of christians; those that have engaged in the
process of the transformational change to become the children that God wants them to be, and
those that are christian by name, who do not engage in that process and choose to remain as they
are. The latter category can often be seen quoting bible verses that suit their situation, but fail to
understand its true context. God expects a transformation within us as our knowledge of Him
increases. The key to becoming God’s chosen possession, lies in the ability to faithfully obey His
commandments (Exodus 19:5) This is what initiates our growth.
There are many examples of people in the bible that had to go through change before they could be
used by God. Elisha become a man that was used by God mightily because he went through a
transformation. Many people want the end result, but do not want to go through the process of
change to achieve it. Resisting sin will make the devil flee from us, but so often many find
themselves unable to abstain from sin. By giving in to their worldly desires, they attract the devil.
Jesus started His message of repentance within the synagogues. Why? Because that is where most
were religious not righteous. The same can still be said of modern day believers. People still attend
church, but remain unchanged or inspired by the word. Ask yourself this, are you aligning yourself
through His word to be compatible with God? Is it worth spending your life gathering all the things of
this world at the expense of your soul? (Mark 8:36) As a Christian, it is imperative to think beyond
the tangible things that you can see with your naked eye. Think about the Kingdom of God. A time is
coming when this world will come to pass and we will have to face God giving an account of how we
chose to live. In that day, will Jesus stand and acknowledge you as His own?
Genesis 3:22-24. The garden of Eden was beautiful and had everything that Adam and Eve needed,
however they paid the ultimate price when they violated God’s command. Their sin caused them to

be expelled forever with no access to eden. The length of their lives was limited and animosity
replaced the contentment they once enjoyed with the very animals they tended to. Adam and Eve
lost the opportunity to live in paradise, in the presence and provision of God. Instead, they, and all
generations to come were sentenced to a life of working the land in order to survive. In the same
way, we can equate how violating God’s command can cost us the Kingdom of God and the blessings
associated with it. However we see in John 3:3-7 a second chance being granted to us through Jesus
Christ. He is our access back to the Father. Whoever is born of man is born into a cursed life resulting
from the disobedience of Adam and Eve. However, through Jesus, we can undergo a transformation.
The process of baptism symbolises dying to self and rising again through Christ. By water, the Holy
Spirit and the blood shed on the cross to redeem our sin, we can again have access to the presence
and ultimately the Kingdom of God. Therefore, our actions must reflect how Christ now lives in us.
In conclusion, let us then not confirm to the patterns of this world, instead we need to continuously
renew our mind on a daily basis (Romans 12:2). Let us not resist the process of change, but embrace
it as a part of the transformation that we need to go through to become the people that God has
destined us to be.

Transformation
Becoming

Becoming

God has given you another chance to live. Why not use this time you have been given
wisely. We should be mindful not to focus on what we do not have, but we must take time
to appreciate what we do have. The bible teaches to be joyful at all times. True joy comes
from within. It is an intentional choice to be joyous at all times.

God speaks through His word. His word is not so that we can make comments about it,
then go back to our daily life. It is not a word to simply be enjoyed. It is not an interesting
fictional story. The word of God teaches us to become. Becoming is a process of
transformation. It is transformative because it inspires us to become something new. By
definition, transformation means an extreme, radical change. As long as you don’t
understand the word in this context, no matter how many years you might hear it or attend
church, it will not have that transformational effect in your life. If we are unable to realise this
aspect of the word, it’s purpose for us will be lost. This is why application of what we hear
from the word of God is very important.
Becoming means that you are on a journey from one point to another. Look at the devise
you are using today, it was a transformation of raw materials that were put together to
create the gadget you have now. So is the word of God. If we give ourselves to the word,
we become transformed. Unless mixed with faith (Hebrews 4:2), we know that the word of
God isn’t beneficial in us. You see, the word of God teaches us to be elevated from one
level to another. As such, when God speaks, He wants to transform us. This can only be
realised through our ability to fully surrender to God. Even if we believe in God, we might
find it difficult to accomplish our purpose because we lack the capacity to apply the word in
the situations we face. Our life, the word, and our faith can be separate entities, but when
we can combine them to work coherently together, they become transformative.
For you to become who God called you to be, you need to effectively use the bible
resourcefully by implementing what you have read and understood. In Joshua 1:9, Joshua
was instructed by God to be determined. This required him to be unwavering in his
decisions and to stand by them. God knew that Joshua would encounter challenges and
warfare. Joshua therefore needed to become something that he was not before; a
determined individual. When you permit the word of God to transform you, you inherently
fulfil your purpose. Sadly, so many of us start the process of transformation, become afraid,
then opt out of it. In Today’s context, Joshua embodies the concept of remaining steadfast
through adversity. Remember, students learn, not to recite back the same information to
their teachers, but rather learn in order to implement what they have learnt through the
concept of application. In order for us to undergo that transformative process, we need to
be able to apply the knowledge that we are learning from the word of God in to our day to
day life.
1 Kings 19:19-21- This is an extraordinary scripture. There is no one who builds a house
without counting the cost. In this story, we read that Elijah put his cloak on Elisha. We know
that Elijah was a man sent by God Himself, meaning that there was something significant
about his cloak. Whatever it may have been, the act of putting the cloak on Elisha, became
the stimulus that inspired Elisha’s transformation. After that encounter with Elijah, Elisha’s
life was never the same again. He slaughtered his oxen and left his home to serve Elijah as
a servant. We see the same transformation when the first disciples were called. One word
inspired them to leave their livelihoods and become fishers of men. If we evaluate these two
encounters we see that the word of God can only be transformational to us once we see
the value that it holds in our lives. The word of God has the power and authority to change
us only is we give ourselves to it.
Often a time, many of us have encountered God in a supernatural way. Perhaps God wants
to use us to bring healing, or prophesy, or even preaching, but we resist or completely

ignore. So the transformational value of God doesn’t work in us. We must surrender to
God’s will in order to become. It was a difficult decision for Elisha to give up his life and
leave his patents. However he understood that there was a greater value in whatever was
urging him to act in the manner he did. Elisha chose to acknowledge it.
Becoming is not about merely listening to what God says and not actually applying it. We
have the potential to do greater things if we allow God to work within us. (John 14:20). We
need to use the word to make the required change from within. We cannot pick and chose
particular verses that are favourable to us but rather embrace all of it. We must be like the
wise builder who build is house on a solid rock by having our foundations rooted in faith
(Matthew 7: 24-27).
The process of transformation is a choice that we must make by willingly offering ourselves
to God to allow Him to work in us. When we show any resistance, God might choose to
move to another person who is more willing than we are.
Take the time to reflect on your life. How can we expect the same God we have denied to
then give us what we ask for? Jesus Christ died on the cross so that our sins could be
forgiven. His death has given us access to the Kingdom of God. Declare today that you
want to become. Chose to become someone moulded by God through His own process.
Think about what God has asked us to do, we may have refused to adhere to it, and thus
refused the process of becoming. Becoming is much more than the theory of hearing the
word, but involves engaging in the transformation process. Our common enemy is the devil.
We need to remember that our focus should be on undergoing the process of
transformation to become something new, instead of engaging in confrontations and
conflicts with our fellow brethren. We can be great people if we allow the process of God to
change us.

Commitment

Hearing the word of God and not putting it into practise is like building a house on an unstable
foundation. (Matthew 7:24-27). The word of God is what gives our faith depth and subsequently the
ability to weather any storm that comes our way. It is vital then that when we hear God’s word, we
take time to understand it then put it into practise in situations applicable to that word. You cannot
just hear the word on a Sunday, comment on how inspirational it was , then forget about it.

If we take pupils in school as an example, we know that they are not just primarily going there to recite to
the teacher what they have a learnt, nor merely to pass an exam. They learn the idea of
conceptualising the information that they are learning so that they can apply it later on in a different
situation when need arises. Even if we take a look at professions such as doctors or lawyers, they
learn the theory of their professions in education, but they must then apply that theory in hospitals
or in the courts. In the same way, as christians, we need to develop the habit of learning how to
reflect on the word and teachings we receive so that we can apply it to our everyday lives. It is a
choice to actively put that word into action. A person with an inability to apply the word of God is
seen by the continuous repeating of the same mistakes.
This current series of teachings revolves around the book of Joshua, mainly focused on the
ultimatum he gave the Israelites to leave their idols, pledge their loyalty and serve the God that had
delivered them from captivity. We then delved deeper by uncovering the importance of
understanding who God is and the power dynamic that exists between ourselves and Him. Following
that, we unpacked the meaning of humbleness and how to surrender before God. With the most
recent teaching looking into walking in the voice of God. Today, the focus will be on commitment and
how Jesus explains it to us.
When we make that declaration to serve God, it means that we have made a conscious decision to
do so. There is often a misconception that if we have no lack we don’t need God. Most see no need
for God, if they are in good health or have amassed a certain amount of wealth. Contrary,
Deuteronomy 8:18 says that God is the giver of wealth. Ecclesiastes reminds us, our reason for living
is not to chase material gain, or the acknowledgment of the world, but it is in fact about worshipping
God (Ecclesiastes 12:13). Nowadays, we choose to worship on our own terms as opposed to the ways
that God has outlined for us. To commit to something requires some form of sacrifice. It requires
giving in to something and prioritising it, forfeiting something else.
Luke 9:57-62 – In this scripture, Jesus is trying to illustrate that true commitment to Him is inevitably
at the expense of something else in our lives. There is ultimately a price to pay. In verse 58, Jesus
reiterates that life in ministry is uncomfortable. One must forgo their creature comforts for the sake
of the gospel. Essentially He was asking the people if they would be committed to reprioritise the
very things they deem important to them and put God and His work first? In Luke 9:62, Jesus uses an
example of someone who takes up the plough and starts to work, but continuously looks back. In this
verse He states that anyone who does that “is not fit for the Kingdom of God”. The act of ploughing
requires a degree of concentration to ensure straight beds. Looking back means that you are
distracted and will prevent you from keeping a straight line. If you continue to look back whilst
ploughing, it demonstrated that your attention is divided between the work you should be doing and
whatever it is that is distracting you. Ultimately anyone with a divided mind is therefore not fit for
the Kingdom of God.
Understanding what following Jesus entails prevents us from attempting to serve Him on our own
terms. We need to realise that worshipping God is a commitment. One we ought to uphold
regardless of challenges or obstacles that may befall us. This understanding will ensure that we
remain focused on the goal even if we encounter potential distractions.

Understanding the context of a scripture will enable you to understand how it can apply to your life.
For example, If we take the scripture from Exodus 19:5 at face value, then it would mean that anyone
can just take that verse and declare themselves a prized possession just like the Israelites. However,
when we put it into context, we know that there is a requirement needed to stay in that favour. One
must faithfully obey the commandments of God and live a life of obedience to be able to be that
prized possession. In the same way, you cannot receive the blessing that comes with commitment if
you lack it. Many christians today are passive followers. They lack active involvement and
commitment to the Kingdom of God. If you feel satisfied with merely attending church routinely,
then you need to re-evaluate your purpose in following God.
Luke 14:26-31 – You have to count the cost of following Jesus. There is price to pay to be a disciple for
Jesus, it is not completely free. It is true that Jesus died on the cross for us, but there is something
that you must prioritise and sacrifice in order to follow Him. To be a child of God is a lifetime
commitment. Let’s reflect once again on the book of Joshua. By choosing to God, it meant that the
Israelites had give up their idols. That was the cost of following God. Ask yourself this, Have you truly
considered what you must leave behind in order to follow God? Today, many are weak in spirit
because they have not accounted for the sacrifice required of them to fulfil the life of a christian.
Most prefer to keep a distance from the things of God, observing from afar as opposed to getting
involved.
At the end of the day, God should be your first priority. Understand that in order to make Him your
priority, you need to be committed to Him. Embrace the fact that you will have to give up some
things that you were used to in order to do so. It is not an easy feat, but remember, God is always
with us to strengthen us. There is much to do in the work of God, so make sure that you are more
proactive in His house. Be eager to put into practise all you are learning.

Commitment
Walking in the voice

Walking in the voice

Walking in the voice of God is something that cannot be stressed enough. It is an important act that
enables us to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Walking in voice requires us to hear what God is saying,
understand the instruction then ultimately walk in it. It is a key element that helps us build a
relationship with God.

Perceptions and perspective affect how you approach life and consequently how you then choose to
live it. As a child of God, your interpretation of life, must come to the same conclusion as the Father
intended. God speaks in different ways. He can speak in an audible voice you hear, He can speak
through visions and dreams or prophesy, and also through the scriptures. Walking in the voice is
therefore being sensitive enough within your spirit to be able to recognise God when He speaks.
Regardless of the manner in which He does so.
John 10:27-28 – Jesus refers to Himself as the chief shepherd, and us, as His sheep. The scripture
itself outlines that there is a special relationship that exists between the shepherd and his flock.
When sheep recognise the voice of the shepherd, they respond accordingly. In order for that to
occur, the shepherds voice would have become familiar to the sheep. In the same way, so too must
we become accustomed to our master. Think about it, if someone is known to you, when they call
your name, do you not respond in a way that reflects the existing relationship you have? This is why
developing a relationship with Jesus is so important. It is not possible to follow, if you do not know
the voice of the person that is trying to lead you. But when you have an understanding of who God
is, it becomes second nature to automatically act upon hearing His voice.
John 10:1-6- Take a moment to imagine a sheep pen. Would it not be strange if you saw someone
climbing over the fence instead of using the gate? The scripture is clear that it is a foe not a friend
that would behave in this manner. A friend would have ready access to the sheep pen. Like wise, the
rightful shepherd would enter through the gate. He would go ahead of his flock and call each by
name, leading it to greener pastures.
John 10:12-17- Supposing the shepherd is a hired help instead of the owner. Would he not still care
for the sheep? Indeed he may very well do so, however, the scripture teaches us that his dedication
to the sheep is not be as strong as that of the owner. Why? Because a hired help would flee when
faced with danger, but the owner would risk their life to defend his flock. Now let’s put both
scriptures into context. If we allow Jesus to be our shepherd, we have all assurance that He will stand
and protect us. He would not come like a thief in the night and jump over the fence. Jesus has direct
access to us. There is a certain level of trust and reliance that can only develop by getting to know
Jesus as our shepherd. Jesus showed His devotion to us by becoming the true sacrificial lamb. He
died on the cross so that we could be saved and have everlasting life.
Historically the role of a shepherd has often been looked down upon in comparison to other
occupations. For Jesus to proclaim Himself as the chief shepherd, in a role that is often not highly
regarded in society, is evidence of His humility. By taking on that responsibility, He wanted to show to
us that we can follow Him wherever He leads as He knows the path already.
The relationship between Jesus and those that belong to Him is reciprocal. As John 10:14-15
highlights. Being able to distinguish His voice amongst all the others around you is very important. It
protects you from being mislead. Other voices may come under the guise of offering you life, but
they are not the true voice of God. You can only make that distinction if you have a relationship with
God. As the true sheep, your conscious should be able to help guide you even if there is pressure to
follow those other voices. Jesus has given us the instruction to love. (Matthew 22:36-40). All the
commandments are centred on this concept of love. If you love, you do not have the capacity to
cause harm. Therefore, any voice that leads you to harm, is not of God. Use the scripture as a road

map to follow God. Everything relevant to your christian walk is written within it. The onus is on you
to follow it.
As the sheep, be mindful that there are still others that belong in the sheepfold but have yet to
arrive. The great commission,(Matthew 28:18-20), is so that those that have not become part of the
flock can be given the opportunity to belong to it. Anyone that believes in Jesus and makes a
conscious decision to live by His commands is part of His flock, (John 10:27), but anyone that rejects
Him does not belong to Him, but rather the devil (John 8:44).
Remember, some things look good from afar, but they are far from God. Sometimes we can become
attracted to things that are bad for us, which is why it is important that we take time to strengthen
our resolve and become firm in our relationship with God. Find the time to read the scripture and
through prayer, immerse yourself in God. At the end of the day, what is in your heart is more
important than what you say with your lips. The bible in Isaiah 29:13 says, “These people claim to
worship me, but their words are meaningless, and their hearts are elsewhere.” This is why even
when you are out and about, at work or even at school, God needs to remain in your heart. He
should be the foundation of your actions. Let the word of God be our daily bread. Let it become part
of our foundation as Christians. It will help us navigate the complexities of life. As children, youth,
young adults and adults, let God be the centre of all we do so that He can continue to fight for us and
guide us to those greener pastures as He has promised.

Following God

Christians sometimes make a habit of prioritising everything else in place of God. The theme of this
year, inspired by Joshua 24, is to make a conscious declaration to serve God. Pledging complete
loyalty to Him. This requires us to do away with every distraction that prevents God from taking
centre stage in our lives. Does the bible not say to worship God with all our heart, all our soul and all
our strength” (Deuteronomy 6:4-5)? As a christian, you need to understand the value of God in your
life. You can spend a lot of time in the church, but not actually be in Christ.

When something is valuable to you, you often do not need prompting to do anything associated with it. Sadly, many christians do no value God. This is reflected in how so many only pray and seek Him when they are in need. But that is not true worship. That is merely using God to obtain what we want. There is a
difference being a true worshiper and a needy person. A worshiper understands the value of God
and seeks to live by His decrees, whereas a needy christian constantly asks from God but pays no
attention to living a life worthy of Christ. In essence they seek the gift, but not the giver.
Understanding this principle will help you regard God with the reverence awe, and honour deserving
of the all mighty Creator of Heaven and Earth. The owner of life and everything in it.
Knowing God’s place in your life, requires you to be able to be a follower. Therefore, to be able to
follow, you need to value that which is leading you. There should be a sense of humility from within
to permit yourself to be led without allowing pride to take over. Sometimes the positions we hold in
the body of Christ impacts our ability to be humble. Perhaps being in leadership, or as a child of a
church leader you may begin to feel like you are extremely prayerful, or have full knowledge of the
scriptures. You can then start to value your own opinion over God. Even a leader needs to be able to
follow God in order to lead a congregation. Failure to do so will inevitably result in teachings born of
human wisdom instead of inspired by the Holy Spirit Himself. That is why we see certain occurrences
within the church community that go against the morals of God.
It takes a heart of surrender to allow Christ to live within us. It is a conscious decision to humble
yourself before Him. Only then can you be empowered by the word of God as it directs you in the
way that God wants. God has to qualify you in order for you to take up certain positions. Exodus 19:5
teaches us that obedience qualifies us to be God’s chosen. Obedience requires sacrifice and
complete surrender. Abraham obeyed God’s instruction to move from his fathers house, and it was
only when he arrived at the place God had stipulated that he was blessed. If you do not walk
specifically according to the instruction, you will not truly be aligned to God’s plan. God is able and
wants to do so much more for you, but His ways are not a part time commitment; God needs to be
your priority.
You may ask yourself what steps do I need to align myself to God’s plan? Well, for the most part, you
just need think back to every word God has spoken into your life, reflect on every revelation you got
from His scripture and there you will find what He expects of you. Do not allow the difficulty of the
task at hand to bring about resistance in you. God is always with you, even when things seem hard.
Matthew 4:18-22- When Jesus came into the lives of those first disciples, they immediately left what
they were doing to follow Him. There is a difference between actually following and briefly taking a
look to see what is happening before returning to what you were doing before. You see, when those
first disciples chose to follow Jesus, they completely left what they were doing. They were fishermen
by trade, so in essence they left their entire livelihood for the gospel. The disciples decided that Jesus
was more important than what they were doing and in that instantaneous moment decided on a
lifetime commitment of discipleship. The value of Jesus was revealed to them in such a profound
way, they simply could not remain as they were.
When you decide to be a Christian there are two different things that can happen. One being that
you make that lifetime commitment, the other being that you merely follow Jesus as a convenience

only when you need Him. To surrender to Christ means that whatever you do somehow benefits the
work of God. If your plans are focused elsewhere, you cannot follow Jesus. For example, when
building a house, you undoubtably lose money first in buying the materials needed for the
construction. However, that is part of the process required to obtain a completed house. If you
decide to be a Christian, you need to understand that there is a cost involved. But when the value of
God is revealed to you in the same way as the first disciples, forgoing certain things become as
natural as breathing.
Matthew 28:19-20 outlines the Great Commission. It is an instruction for everyone. We are all pieces
in a greater jigsaw puzzle to fulfil this instruction. Everyone has a part to play. You cannot say that
you love Jesus if you are not concerned for His work. You need to willingly get involved in whatever
outreach activities within your ministry.
Luke 8:1-3 provides a great example of what supporting the work of God looks like. It shows how
some women who were actively supporting the work of God, accompanied Jesus and his disciples to
provide help when it was needed. They used whatever resources they had to accomplish this. A true
believer cannot just passively attend church without getting involved in all aspects of their ministry
be it financially or by giving your expertise or time. There is a practical aspect to worship that
christians of today often ignore. This is why there are so many needy and passive “church goers”
with shallow faith instead of “devoted warriors for Christ”, whose worship brings glory to God. Ask
yourself this, are you an asset to your ministry? What contribution are you giving to the
advancement of the work of God.
In conclusion, how you value God is rooted in your ability to believe in Him. True faith will prevent
you from seeing your activeness in church as a loss. This is because the reasoning behind your
actions will fuel your desire to please God. Hebrews 4:2 outlines that the power and effect of the
word of God within you is void without faith. So take a leap of faith today and surrender your life to
the work of God. Deny yourself and receive the fulness of Christ as He comes alive in you as
according to Mark 8:34. Then whatever you do, will be a building block in the Kingdom of God.

Following God
Surrendering to God part 2

Surrendering to God part 2

We need to understand the meaning of life from God’s perspective. Jesus can only stand
and bear witness of us on judgement day only if we have lived a life worthy of His calling.
Many people are unable to see the goodness of God mainly because of their perception. If
you look at things from God’s perspective, you will be able to see that you are blessed.
Psalms 23 teaches that in Him we have ALL provision. Being christian does not nullify
hardships.

Contrary, imagine this, the Israelites wondered the dessert for 40 years. The
dessert is such a hostile environment, yet time and time again God provided. The Israelites
had no choice but to be completely dependant on God. Nowadays, Christianity is seen as a
sign of weakness, and is perceived as poverty or lack. But does the book of Ecclesiastes not
explain that amassing material wealth is meaningless without God. Obedient worship is
ultimately the true purpose of life. Each day is a blessing and an opportunity. Let is not take
your whole life to come to this understanding. Therefore, take time to reflect on your life and
all that God has done for you. Self-evaluation will help you gain better clarity on where you
are in your christian walk. If today was your last, would you be confident you fulfilled God’s
intended purpose for you? Reflect on those areas that need change and surrender them to
God.
There is a great degree of self preparation required to fulfil God’s purpose. Why? Because
we will encounter some form of battle and up hill struggle difficult to handle. Alone, we can
feel self doubt and the prospect of giving up and turning back becomes feasible. Embarking
on a christian walk of faith is the beginning of a journey where you must be prepared to fight.
However through the knowledge of Christ, remember Jesus will be with you through it all just
as God was with the Israelites in the dessert. God intentionally led them through a difficult
path to cultivate their reliance on Him and ensure going back wasn’t an option. When God is
about to elevate you to a higher level and it’s hard to bare, surrender to the assurance He
will never leave you, and His plan is perfect.
Surrendering is the foundation of unlocking blessing. To surrender means that you are letting
God take control. Only then will God’s intention begin to manifest. Coming to Christ doesn’t
automatically equal you relinquishing control to God. This is perhaps why no change is seen
from your former self. But when you are able to completely surrender, a new version of you
is evident. “The old life is gone; a new life has begun (2 Corinthians 5:17).
We are living in a time where there is a culture of “alternatives and options”. This culture is
spilling over into how we perceive our faith and cultivating a spirit of self reliance instead of
complete surrender to God. How do we know this? Just look at how nowadays there is an
overwhelming number of people that ONLY seek God in times of desperate need. True
surrender is still CHOOSING GOD, even when all is well, and an alternative is available. Let
God take precedence over our everyday activities and livelihood.
To love God with all your heart and all your soul, you need to intentionally put Him first. God
does not permit anything that rivals Him. Before you turn your attention to the demands of
life, or being up to date with social media and what is going on in the world, take the time to
start the day with God, asking Him to order your steps for that day. Not by coincidence but
intentionally and purposefully carving out time in your day to achieve this.
Romans 12:2 – Letting your mind be transformed to allow God’s perspective to be the main
way you view the world is key. Your perception now needs to be different than that of your
former self. Often people come to Christ, but they still try to live by world standards. Romans
8 teaches to surrender and let the Spirit of God take over your flesh. What is logical to our
way of thinking may often be contrary to what God is intending. For example when Abraham
left his fathers house as instructed by God, had he told other people about this plan, they
might ridiculed him, pointing out the fact that he was 75 years old. Why would anyone uproot

themselves and relocate at that age when they were perfectly cared for where they were?
We humans can see as peculiar or illogical is often logical and makes perfect sense to God.
Surrender is therefore being aligned to God and the ability to still trust Him even if it makes
no sense. This is fundamentally living to God’s standard not conforming to that of the world.
When God has chosen you to be His own, you are expected to live in a different way that
reflects that you are His. Most people live a double life. They want to love God, but cannot
let go of the world. Remember, your body is the Lords temple. (1 Corinthians 6:19) You

should be a reflection of that in behaviour and the choices you make.You still must be a law-
abiding citizen, and above that, lead a life focused on what God is asking of you. Even if it

differs to what the world deems as normal.
As we know, the Israelites were acknowledged by God as His favoured nation amongst all
other nations at that time (Deuteronomy 14:2). But in order to remain favoured, they had to
make an active choice to surrender themselves to God and faithfully keep His commends. A
life in Christ cannot resemble that of your past. Do not question what God asks of you, nor
complain about the difficulties it may entail because you are still His chosen, set apart for
His glory. Your life by default will always be different in comparison to that of those not
called. That is the Devine favour and grace not afforded to everyone. Be grateful for such an
opportunity. In 1 Kings 17: 8-24, the widow at Zarephath received such favour. She definitely
wasn’t the only struggling widow in town, yet God’s grace located her. An opportunity was
afforded her for God to change her life. She did not resist, but recognised the favour. The
story of the banquet in Luke 14:15-24 is a classic example of missed opportunity. Your
inability to surrender can be what blocks favour in your life. It can be the very reason
opportunity and favour locate others in place of you.
In conclusion, you need to deny yourself in order to follow Jesus. (Matthew 16:24) When we
surrender ourselves to Jesus, He will come and live in us. Matthew 6:33 teaches us that all
we hope for will be fulfilled after we surrender and make God our priority. Faith, hope and
trust in God will bring fulfilment into your life. Take the time to read the following scripture to
gain understanding on the concept of surrendering. (John 5:19, John 15:14, Galatians 2:20,
Luke 9:23 and Matthew 26:42)

Surrendering to God

God has given us practical tools that we can use to be able to align ourselves with what He
teaches and expects of us. By hearing His word and putting it into practice we are building our
faith and understanding of Him. As a christian, preparation is an important process. As humans,
we have certain attributes that we must master in order to be compatible with God. For
example, God told Joshua to be strong and courageous. Joshua needed to work on these
aspects of his character by himself so that he could fulfil the purpose God had for him.

You see, God still speaks in our lives, our lack of understanding is what renders us unable to implement
His instruction. Let’s take a moment to look at John the Baptist. His purpose was to prepare the
people for the arrival of Jesus. It was so they would accept Jesus as the King of Kings and Lord
of Lords. The people had to undergo a mental shift in order to understand the message of John.
The Amplified bible in Mathew 3:2 says, “repent [change your inner self – your old way of
thinking…” Why? Because God was going to manifest in a way different to what they had
become accustomed to. Repentance would start in the church, not the outside. Sadly we see an
inability to accept Jesus resulting from an inability to accept the message of John all because of
ignorance. This highlights that preparation of the heart is key.
Preparation of the heart lies in our ability to surrender. To surrender means to give something up
to someone else, be it willingly or unwillingly. It is what builds our resolve and character. When
we surrender we have a deep-rooted understanding that no matter what, God is in control. We
become fine tuned to His perfect will and are able act upon it as the Spirit leads. The theme of
this year, Joshua 24:15, focuses on the fundamental principle of intentionally making a decision
to surrender to God through servanthood whilst forfeiting all else. The Israelites needed to
pledge their loyalty and remove the other gods they had amassed amongst their possessions as
previously commanded of them in Deuteronomy 6:4. Today, although we may not have physical
representations of “gods” amongst us as did the Israelites, we too have amassed other things
that are distracting our focus, replacing God, and in turn our loyalty to Him. God requires 100%
commitment. He is a jealous God. The life we live must resemble God’s instruction. Instead, our
lack of focus has cultivated certain behaviours and cultures that we are trying to mould to
resemble God, yet they are born of human agenda.
What are the things that can help us live a life of surrender? Understanding the power dynamic
that exists between ourselves and God is a good start. God is the supreme and we live under
His authority. What He says, goes! Preserving our bodies as His temple will invite the Holy Spirit
to dwell in us, leading and guiding us in the ways of the Father. Humility is the only way you can
recognise and accept God’s authority. Humbleness enables you to allow God to speak over your
life. Lack of, results in you dictating your own path. Remember, God departs from the proud.
Apostle Paul on numerous accounts, refers to himself as a slave to the gospel or a slave to
Christ (Romans 1:1). A servant is not greater than their master. Slaves do not dictate what must
be done but contrary, the master stipulates the course of action. Often a time, we surrender to
God as a last resort. We try to dictate to God our preferred option as opposed to allowing Him to
lead. For example, we see a job on offer and we say “God that is the one that I want” instead of
asking Him what job would be the best fit. Proverbs 19:1 says that “people may plan all kinds of
things, but the Lord’s will is going to be done”. At the end of the day, God wants us to surrender
to Him willingly even when there are other options available to us. This is true humility. We are
acknowledging other options available to us, yet consciously choosing to allow God to take
control. Essentially what we are saying is “as you direct me God, I will follow.”

Baptism is about dying to our flesh as we rise together with Christ. Galatians 2:20 goes further
to explain this principle. Complete surrender is essentially denouncing our existence for the
glory of God. You see, God knows all. Nothing is hidden from Him, even our future. So when
you accept Jesus as your personal saviour, it is important to turn away from worldly desires.
Do not become a person that practises lip service but your heart is far from Him (Isaiah 29:13,
Matthew 15:8). Living a life of surrender means living from the heart. Not seeking God only
when things are hard or only giving glory through your suffering. It is also about still worshiping
when everything is well with you.
In numbers 9, we see how God lead the Israelites, a cloud by day and fire by night.
When it was time to stop, camp was set up. Be it for 1 day, 6 months or even years.
When the cloud or the pillar of fire moved, they would break camp and move on as it moved.
God was in complete control and the people recognised God’s authority. Today, people fail to
see that to be alive is a miracle in itself. Learn to live your life by faith. Believe that God is your
shield and the one in control. Abraham left his father house by faith, believing in the promise
spoken to him. Remember, humility or surrendering to God is not a sign of weakness.
In conclusion, there is nothing more important than living a life that God has outlined. “The lord
is my shepherd; I have everything I need” Psalms 23:1 is an important reminder of that.
Knowing that God is there for you, means believing wholeheartedly that even when challenges
come, they encounter God first. Whatever God asks will always benefit you. God carries our
burdens and His yoke is easy. Material things do not make you happy. Jesus is the one that
gives peace and joy from within. Never stop seeking to learn because by stopping you imply
that you know everything. Romans 12:2 teaches us that there are new things to learn everyday.
It is up to you to change your mindset and surrender to be able to accept them.

Surrendering to God
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