Author: admin

24 active posts

Having a Relationship with God – Series 8

Having a Relationship with God – Series 8

Matthew 13:1-9 – You can only get somewhere when you know where you currently are. As a farmer sows seed, we as the ground fall into 4 different categories.
1. Those who receive the word, but it does not stay with them. It is snatched away due to lack of understanding.
2. Those that lack depth in Christ. They are shallow and easily discouraged by troubles and hardships.
3. Those that lack focus. They are consumed by the worries of life and give priority to chasing the world. This chokes their faith.
4. Those that have an active relationship with God. They know their Father and understand Him and His expectations of them.
Today’ s word is about understanding where you are as an individual and take responsibility. Self-reflection and introspect allow you to understand where you are so that you know where to go.

Matthew 13:18-33- Have you ever wondered why you hear the word of God, but no change in your life, you hear it and still remain in the same situation with no progression? How many times have you felt compelled to leave your church, alter your contribution to a church project, or just simply be discouraged because of other peoples opinions or words. How many times have you been inspired to take your ministry to greater heights but peoples responses have hindered your progress. The thing is, in life there are many hurdles. You cannot change what adversity you face, but you can take responsibility of your own actions and spiritual maturity and development.
Joshua 1:7-8. There is an intriguing lesson in these verses. The fact that God had chosen Joshua did not nullify Joshua’s responsibility to be determined and focused. Joshua had to be intentional. As soon as a person gives their life to Christ and embarks on their personal walk with Him, they are automatically engaged in spiritual warfare thus the need to be intentional, determined and focused. Lack of these aspects causes you to miss opportunities as you become distracted by the devil. You have to make a firm decision that when in church you will intentionally sing and dance , engage in the word and purposefully seek God and worship Him, otherwise that time spent in church will be fruitless. The more value you put into something, the greater the reward. Therefore you must be intentional in your walk with Christ. If you consciously decide to hear and understand the word of God, you retain it, but if you have no intent or focus you lose it.
Analogy- there was once a group of 10 merchants faced with adverse weather conditions on a particular day. 9 of them decided to forego their daily tasks and chose to remain at home, warm and comfortable. However 1 decided to brave the weather and set up his stall as usual. That merchant sold more on that one day than ever before as there was no competition. The merchant chose to ignore the barrier presented to him. He used a negative situation to his advantage. He flourished in persecution and stood in adversity.
God’s intent was to use Joshua, but it was Joshua’s responsibility to be determined regardless of whatever came his way. So be empowered today. Overcoming persecution leads to stronger character and depth in Christ. Always remain focused. Apostle Paul (2 Timothy 2:4) taught about how soldiers do not mingle with civilian affairs so as to please their superiors and remain focused on their task at hand. Likewise, as a Christian, be like a true soldier. Do not concern, dabble and mingle in affairs that do not concern you, but rather be focused and determined to be deep rooted in your relationship with God. Let go of perceptions and things that affect your ability to be effective. So today, take time to analyse where you are in Christ now and start to make the necessary changes and steps to get closer to where you want to go.

Having a Relationship with God – Series 7

An investment in a relationship with God remains key. A relationship with God empowers Christians to be active in the word. A person deep rooted in the word of God will know and recognize that the battles they may face are not theirs to bare, but the Lords. Therefore the word of God is not to be listened to passively.

Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23. The parable of the sower pertains to all of us. Everyone has a category that they fall under. Ask yourself this, how much of the word of God have you retained over the past few weeks? Evaluate then, which category you fall under!

Understand that the sower did not harvest what he expected to, in relation to what he sowed. The type of soil is what makes the difference. The seed is the same, the sower is the same so the variable is the ground. Therefore you hold the keys as to what type of person or soil you are. There are 4 different categories that have been identified in the scriptures.
1. Those who receive the word, but it does not stay with them. It is snatched away due to lack of understanding.
2. Those that lack depth in Christ. They are shallow and easily discouraged by troubles and hardships.
3. Those that lack focus. They are consumed by the worries of life and give priority to chasing the world. This chokes their faith.
4. Those that have an active relationship with God. They know their Father and understand Him and His expectations of them.

What you spend your time doing is that which you become. You therefore cannot expect to connect with God at the end of the week if you have spent that time invested in other things that do not concern Him.
Colossians 1:9. When the Spirit of God is in us, we get understanding. Your recognition and sensitivity to the Holy Spirit only comes from having a relationship with God.
Analogy – At a job interview, all employers are interested in 3 main things, knowledge, attitude and the skills. Knowledge alone does not make you competent, neither does attitude or skills on their own. Likewise spiritually, one must possess all the above to be competent as an effective christian. You need to understand what is “understanding ” in order to fully have a relationship with God.

Having a Relationship with God – Series 7
Having a Relationship with God – Series 6

Having a Relationship with God – Series 6

In this series, we are talking about having a relationship with God. It is about empowering Christians of today not to rely solely on leaders or wait for Sunday service, but rather have a personal relationship with God. This is achieved by living in God’s standards and His perfect will for our lives. In today’s society, unfortunately some Christians are taken advantage of and mislead because they do not understand the scriptures of God. This series of lessons seeks to equip God’s chosen. When you align yourself with God by making a conscious decision to be God’s treasured possession (Exodus 19:5), you will be able to defy situations and walk in extraordinary faith. Daniel’s prayer (Daniel 6) wasn’t about coming out of the lions den. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednigo’s prayer (Daniel 3) wasn’t about coming out of the fire. But when we understand
God, who He is and His mighty power, we are able to go through any situation and not trade our love or faith in Christ for anything. We have spiritual authority.

1 Peter 3:12 – There is a notion that God listens to everyone, that you can live anyhow and still call upon the Lord. But this verse dispels that notion. Draw your attention to the words WATCH and LISTEN. Having a relationship with God is key as it draws God’s attention to our lives. He WATCHES over us as His eyes are always upon us, and He LISTENS to us as His ears are always open to hear our prayers. God is attentive to our every need regardless of whether we are aware or conscious of them. He will alert you of hidden dangers in your path without you consulting Him, and listen to your prayers with great assiduous. However, in order for us to enjoy this privilege, we must be aware of our role. The spirit of NEGLECT affects many Christians of today. If you neglect your duty or role as a Christian, one day when you are in a critical moment in your life, God will reject you. You can go to church every week but still neglect your part in the covenant between you and God. This will compromise the quality of your relationship with the Lord. One neglects their duty by not following the word of God daily. Neglect always results in negative consequences even practically in our everyday roles as a husband, or wife or child. So in all aspects, we must be people that take responsibility in our duties. Passive christianity won’t get you anywhere. Be intentional in your prayers, understanding and believing in God’s principles. For example, you cannot pray the Lords prayer in one moment, then walk in doubt and fear in another.
Matthew 6:33 – seek God first. Value God first. This verse in other words is saying if you are in a relationship with God and living in the way He has set for us then we will have all the things we need even without us asking.
1 Peter 4:2 – God desires us to live the rest of our earthly life as controlled and constituted by His word. Not our own desires.

Therefore, it is time to solidify our relationship with God. Do not succumb to the blame culture, but rather take responsibility for your actions and fulfil your role as a child of God. Then God will LISTEN and WATCH over you.

Having a relationship with God – Series 5

Exodus 19:5. To recap on the last few sermons, it is paramount to remember that God wants a relationship with His chosen people. As the children of God, we are His chosen. Just as he has demonstrated His mighty power to the Israelites, God wants us to honour and worship Him.
2 Timothy 1:7. Apostle Paul emphasises that amongst the gift of love and self control, God has also given us the spirit of POWER. All these things work together. Power is unique as it gives you the ability to practise love and self control.

Isaiah 59:2. As a people we are not to allow our iniquity to separate us from God. The principle of POWER is relevant because it is the gift of power that will allow you to overcome the urge to commit sin. The Spirit of Power that Apostle Paul refers to in 2 Timothy 1:7, can manifest in two different ways. Firstly it can be portrayed through “STRENGTH “. One can have the understanding and the knowledge to refrain from sinning, but may lack the ability. Once you lack the strength to execute the things you need to overcome, then your relationship with God is compromised. Secondly, power can be portrayed through “AUTHORITY”. As Christians we require a higher level of spiritual authority. In principle, the greater the resistance, the greater the power or force to be applied. Therefore the greater the situation, the greater the authority that needs to be applied.
Ephesians 6:10 & 12. Here we are urged to be strong in the Lord. We are in essence the temple of God. If the temple has no power, then it ceases to be the temple. Remember then that even though the devil has power, God is superior and so is His power that has been gifted to us. That is why a close relationship with God is mandatory. In conclusion, the journey of a Christian is never easy. There will always be challenges, however with power you have the ability to pray for yourself, other people and even do extraordinary feats. The bible refers to peacemakers as blessed. One can only be a peacemaker if they posses the “power” to overcome, sin, conflict, anxieties, situations and negative thinking.

Having a relationship with God – Series 5
Having a relationship with God – Series 4

Having a relationship with God – Series 4

Analogy- Gym membership is ineffective in giving you the body shape you require unless you begin to use the equipment it provides. Likewise, the word of God is not effective in us unless you put it into practise.
The matter of LOVE greatly affects our relationship with God and our level of worship is determined by our actions.

2 Timothy 1:7 – For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, LOVE and self-discipline. If we are true children of God and have been baptised in His Spirit, then we have been given love within us. Unfortunately in today’s society and churches, there are a lot of relational shortcomings. Ask your self this, why do you relate more with some people over others? God does not want anyone that is not at peace with everyone and treats all people equally.
Matthew 22 :34-40. The issue of LOVE can disqualify you in the presence of God. Our failure to accept each other as equals goes against the scriptures. Lack of Love in church communities is exemplified by group formations within the body of Christ. If you find yourself using avoidance to deal with certain people, it means that there is an underlying issue that needs to be addressed. Love is the fundamental foundation of all aspects of worship.
Matthew 5:43-48. God has given a mandate to not only accept our differences but go further by loving even those who persecute us. Loving your friends is normal and ordinary. But extraordinary creates perfection in Christ our Father. Therefore be elevated to a higher level of spiritual maturity by praying for your enemies. How do you exhibit love? Have a clear conscience. Take practical steps, write it down and actively make peace with all those you hold inhibitions towards. Remember, the death of Christ puts the level of Love God expects of us into perspective. If Jesus Christ could give His life on the cross for sinners, then surely we have the power to rise above any squabbles, grudges and negative feelings we harbour over careless words spoken to us.

Having a relationship with God – Series 3

2 Timothy 1: 3-7. Apostle Paul acknowledges that Timothy had faith, however as an experienced teacher of the word of God, he understands that faith alone is not enough. So he encourages Timothy to fan into flame a gift that is already inside him. A gift received by laying of hands through the power of the Holy Spirit.
Apostle Paul in this instance can be likened to a modern day mentor. It is important in your walk as a Christian, to not only read and understand the word of God, but also allow mentors placed and proved by God to speak in your life.

Remember the Spirit of God has already placed within you a gift of power, love and self discipline.
The bible speaks about serving God with a clear conscience. In order to do so, you must have self discipline. It is the ability to do away with the things that affect the conscience and solely focusing on God. When someone comes across a barrier, naturally one concentrates on that barrier, but those whom have received power and self control from God are focused on the end goal, to serve God.
Understand your focus. Do not be a passive observer. Know where you are going. Know your purpose. Chose your battles and let go of things that are not important. Only then can you serve with a clear conscience. In everyday life, everyone faces challenges through general interaction with the people around us, hence the importance of self control. What starts, a thought or a feeling? Analyse your thought process. Dwelling on the negative can only result in negative feelings which determines your preceding actions. We often put blame on situations and forget the power of self control. Positive choices in thought result in positive actions. Therefore our actions towards one another have the ability to compromise our relationship with God. Remember eternal joy is internal, it is not governed by the external.
2 Timothy 2 : 3-6. Be loyal to God. The path of a christian is not easy and is full of hurdles. But if we have chosen God, then we must take part in the suffering and endure it. Be an active soldier on duty. Distinguish yourself above the ordinary. Remember everything is permissible, but not everything is beneficial. An athlete’s discipline determines their victory, likewise the life of a true Christian should attract Gods approval. Do not concern yourself with the physical pursuits of life, but in the will of the Father.

Having a relationship with God – Series 3
Having a relationship with God – Series 2

Having a relationship with God – Series 2

We need to understand our role as the children of God. When we know and understand that, we will start to relate to Christ in a certain way that is pleasing before him.
Colossians 1:1-5. Here Paul acknowledges the faith and love of the church of Colossae. However love or faith on it’s own is not sufficient, hence Paul, in verse 9, now pray’s imploring of God to fill the people with knowledge of the Will of God, wisdom and understanding. Only then could they live a life worthy of the Lord. Through the Spirit of God they could bear fruit.

We too, can only grow through the Spirit once we start to hunger for God and understand the supremacy of Christ. This understanding allows one to see the difference from their way of old and today showing an elevation of spiritual understanding and growth.
Col 1:11. Paul speaks of endurance and patience. In this time of lockdown, what lessons are there to be learnt? If we do not know who Christ is, then we are often intimidated by every situation. God doesn’t always remove uncomfortable situations, but rather through our understanding of Christ and His power, we too can endure and be patient through hardship.
Col 1:15-20. This is the fundamental principle of who Christ is. He is superior over all things. Christ is in control, He will remain in control. He has ever lost it! There is nothing in our lives that we can go through that is a surprise to Him.
In conclusion, do not just concentrate on one aspect of being a Christian as did the church of Colossae, but through your acceptance of Christ as the ultimate supreme being, you can share in the inheritance of His Holy people in the
Kingdom of Light.

Having a relationship with God – Series 1

– Today, let every Christian be empowered that anyone can have a relationship with God. Yes God has sent, ministers, and teachers of the word to help and encourage you, however, you do not have to wait for someone to interpret the word of God to you, sometimes you may be deceived. Seek the scriptures yourself.
-For us to have the truth, we must have a direct relationship with Jesus Christ. As the scriptures say, “No one can go to the father except through Him.

John 15:4 – if we remain in Christ, He will remain in you! That’s the essence of a true relationship with Him. Although Jesus died on the cross for us and saved us by His grace, we still need a relationship with Him to see the Kingdom of God.
Jesus Christ detests sin, if we want a relationship with Him, we must rid ourselves of sin. Let us understand that Jesus is above everything. He is the King of Kings, Lord of Lords. He is the one who died and rose again. So whatever we do, we must ensure to glorify his name.
John 17 :8-9 – the disciples accepted the word that Jesus preached and believed he came from God. Therefore Jesus intercede for them since they belonged to Him. So it is key we understand the word of God, accept it and believe in Jesus Christ. Jesus gave us commandments for His own to follow, so if we believe in Him, we must abide by His word.
John 1 :12 – God gives power only to those who have received him through his son Jesus Christ. God is powerful and His power cannot be doubted. We may question, how does this power relate to you and me…well, through a relationship and obedience to Christ, one can tap into that power.

Seek God while time is still near!

Having a relationship with God – Series 1
God has ushered us

God has ushered us

As God has just ushered us into yet another year, its worthwhile to stop and think! Have you learnt something which will change the way you are going to conduct yourself in 2019 in order grow spiritually? Change of behaviour demonstrates that one has learnt something. Christians across the globe find this being a challenge; to change behaviours. Many people attend mountain prayers, others pray every day, others pray at different times in the night and others fast so many days but what remains unchanged is the way of thinking, and behaviours.

A very good example is in the word of God where we see the children of Israel witnessing the miracles of God who took them away from affliction of the Egyptians with His mighty hand. While they witnessed the miracles of God with their very own eyes, and actually, God taking them away from the oppression under the hand of Pharaoh and the task masters. This whole experience, although very extraordinary and miraculous, it did not change their way of thinking. This is evident when God called Moses to the mountain where he went and stayed for some time. The bible teaches that the children of Israel asked Aaron to make a god because they didn’t know what had happened to Moses, he had not returned.

Although they were out of Egypt and God had wanted them to have a new way of thinking and to know that they now needed to worship God and to believe and trust in Him, their minds were still the same and their way of thinking was still the same (which I may call traditional way of thinking). This is evident because it was very common for people in Egypt those days to worship an image, such as a calf.

This follows that although the Israelites where out of Egypt physically, but their mindset and thought process was still based on Egyptian life style and experience. This is the greatest challenge which Christians face whereby they cannot be transformed into a new way of thinking, despite experiencing the power of God or evening testifying the hand of God.

So in the above illustration, the Israelites where more satisfied in the god they could see (the calf) more than the God they could not see (The almighty God). I repeat, this remains the challenge for many Christians. 2 Cor 5:7 (KJV), For we walk by faith, not by sight. I am sure you hear many people declaring this statement!  But the reality in most cases is contrary. The God we don’t see is much more powerful than the challenges we face or things which we rely on.

Has this passage challenged your thinking? Yes it should!, because this year!, it is a year of breaking the bondage, yes , the year of breaking the bondage of traditional ways of thinking. We should not be thinking in traditional ways because this will keep us in bondage. Gal 2:20 (GNT), so that it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me. This life that I live now, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave his life for me.

Welcome to our theme of the year; breaking the bondage of traditional ways of thinking, based on above scripture. If you were bought by the blood of Jesus Christ, your thinking should be different; your conduct should be different because it’s not you who live anymore but rather, it’s Christ who now lives in you. Challenge your ways of thinking and open abundance of opportunities.

I wish you a very happy new year!

Be blessed.

Bishop Farai

The problem of pleasure

Ecclesiastes 2: 1-11, Judges 7: 5-7

Untamed pleasure is more deadly than holding a grenade without a linchpin. In this modern day, the quest for pleasure has conquered the fear of the consequences of sin. So often times, we find ways to justify our quest for pleasure because our ego forbids self-blame. This justification usually comes in the form of changing wants into needs.

Solomon; the richest and wisest man that ever lived tried it all and concluded that, “.., indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind. There was no profit under the sun.” (Eccl 2:11). The key phrase is “under the sun” which he sometimes refers to as “under heaven” (Eccl 1:12). Here, Solomon is emphasizing that any sort of pleasure that we seek that is not in line with the heavenly mission, that is purely focused on the life we have here on earth (under the sun) is of no benefit, he tried it all. It is this quest for pleasure that led Solomon to marry foreign women that then led him astray (1 Kings 11). It made him the teacher of wisdom and practitioner of foolishness. If Solomon couldn’t profit from all kinds of pleasure he pursued, how much more can us common people benefit from the same pleasure?

The question then is, does it mean that if you are a true Christian there will be nothing to enjoy? I thank God because there is something for us. What pleasure does is it quenches some form of thirst, whether it’s thirst to be noticed, feeling superior, to have control, for men or women etc. Pleasure refreshes, that’s what most people say. What then is true pleasure for a child of God? Judges 7:5 “Separate those who lap the water with their tongues as a dog laps from those who kneel down to drink.” Those who lapped the water with their tongues were equally refreshed as those that knelt down. He who drinks 2 litres of water from a 2 litre container does not get more refreshed that he who drinks 2 litres of water in small quantities from a 300 ml cup. The difference between the 2 groups is on the “HOW” the refreshment was achieved.

Those who lapped the water with their tongues are people who are refreshed without deviating from the mission. Their God given mission was to fight the Midianites therefore; the thirst for refreshment was supposed to align with the need to defeat the enemy. True pleasure for a Christian is therefore; that kind of pleasure that refreshes you yet not straying you from your God given mission. We are fighting the devil every day of our lives which means we don’t have even a single day to hang our boots and refresh. Before you pursue that pleasure your heart is longing for, ask yourself; “Am I lapping or kneeling?” We cannot afford to kneel and drink.

The problem of pleasure
Twitter
YouTube
YouTube