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In Deuteronomy 8:3, we are reminded of the time God provided manna from heaven as sustenance for the Israelite people in the dessert. Manna was readily available for the people to eat, just as bread is a ready made commodity for us today. In contrast, consider the example of Jesus at the start of his ministry. For 40 days and nights, He endured fasting in the wilderness and during this time of physical weakness the devil had an opportune moment to tempt Him.

The power of the spoken word is demonstrated, when Jesus responses by quoting the scripture “men shall not live on bread alone, but all the words that come from the mouth of God (Matthew 4:4).”Jesus understood that even though He was hungry, bread alone could not sustain Him and He knew that He needed the power, love and guidance that came from God alone, and not from physical food. God is able to fill you with His word instead. You see, when people encounter difficult situations, they tend to seek quick ready made answers. Such can also be seen with Isaac when he was in Egypt (Genesis 26). His intent was to move his family from the dry barren land they inhabited to a place where the ground was more fertile in order to fulfil their hunger needs. However God instructed him to stay in Egypt and sow crops in that very dry ground. Again we see the the power of the spoken word. When Isaac obeyed God’s instruction, he was able to harvest hundred fold where others had been unsuccessful. What comes from the mouth of God is not merely sufficient, but abundant. Most of the things that God asks or tells us to do hold hidden value that is not always evident to the naked eye. This is why we should take note of what God says because it will always yield results be it now or at some point in the future. Remember, just as Peter was reminded in Matthew 19:27-29, whatever we forgo or sacrifice for the sake of the gospel will never go unrewarded. In previous summaries, we have explored the concept of value and concluded that the amount of time one spends on something denotes its value. For example, students that value their education spend more time studying than those that feel otherwise. Likewise the manner we interact with God, demonstrates not only our understanding, but the value in which we regard Him. If we don’t invest value, we cannot receive value. In essence, we reap what we sow. As such, when we value God, He in turn values us. So if things are not going our way, instead of blaming or questioning God, stop and reflect on whether you apportioned value to your actions in the first place. Matthew 22:37 instructs us to “love the Lord with all our heart.” Looking at the “heart” as an organ, its vitality is the ability to pump blood to all parts of your body. Now if we place God at the centre or “heart” of our lives, it means that whatever we feel or do will be God filled. If we however allow our mind to be the central focus, it means that our actions are factual and whatever decisions we then take are born of practicality and human sense. Let’s put both these concepts into context. Practically speaking, if the mind is the main decision maker coming to a conclusion based on facts, one seldom finds people that are willing to marry into poverty because it makes no sense to chose to live a life of hardship. However, if the heart is involved in the process, then marrying into poverty becomes a sacrifice one is willing to make for love. Based on the Matthew 7:12, 22:37-40, if you understand the value of God in your life, you then automatically understand the importance of other human beings. So much so, that you will treat others as you would like to be treated. The command to love, simply cannot be ignored. If you want love, you have to love. If you want to be valued, you need to value others. If you want to receive, you must first give. A human being was made in the image of God, so how is it that we can love God that we have not seen, yet we cannot love our neighbour that we can see? Ultimately the more you disregard another person, the more you discredit the word of God. If you witness another persons sorrow or hardship and it brings you joy, then that is a red flag. Take a moment to assess whether you truly see the value of that persons life? Loving your neighbour creates community. Even the word of God includes instruction that upholds respect and brotherly living. Showing love is not only limited to our interactions with other people, but our conduct before God. Does Matthew 6:12 not teach us to forgive as we ourselves desire to be forgiven by God? So if you are unjust or unforgiving to others, in some way, the same measure will be used against you. If you invest your time into an activity, you will get a return on your investment. Gone are the days where you can expect to receive without input. You need to invest in God and He will invest back into you. I believe that God has spoken something of value in your life that you need to go back and reflect upon. Often times we wait for a miracle from God when in fact, the answer lies in a word already spoken upon your life. In Genesis 22:15-18, it was only when Abraham came to sacrifice his son Isaac, that God acknowledged the full extent of Abrahams love and loyalty to Him. Remember, Abraham was already blessed from living a life of complete obedience to God’s instruction. However, it took this single act of faith to activate a deeper connection with God. This stands as testament that you are never too experienced, late or old to activate greater value from God.Therefore, in conclusion, never put a limit to what you can achieve before God in certain parts of your life. If God has spoken something over you, who can oppose it? Refrain from negative thinking because that automatically limits your brain from achieving. Rather declare that through the power of Jesus, you are able to accomplish anything. Remember that God is more valuable than anything that you can think of. Show love to Him by showing love to your community.

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