Thursday, June 24, 2021

The Renewed Mind

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1 Corinthians 2:9-10 (NKJV) But as it is written: "Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him."
But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.

When Laide was going through the challenges she faced as a student on campus, she almost lost all hope and gave up. But what kept her going was the word of God and the Holy Spirit.
One way the Holy Spirit comforts us is by revealing things to us that will comfort us. The things He reveals to us are the basis of our hope and tokens of God’s love for us. They do not only span things in time, but they cover things in eternity that God has purposed for us.

An unrenewed mind does not have the ability to decode and understand the things revealed to his spirit by the Spirit of God. Those who are spiritually mature are those whose minds have been renewed to conform to the mind of Christ. The fact that you are born again does not mean you have a renewed inner man. The new man you have put on needs renewal through the knowledge of the word (see Col 3:9-10).

Go into today knowing that spiritual maturity is through the renewal of your mind by the word of God and by prayer. It is only a renewed mind that can understand the things the spirit reveals--things that the natural human mind cannot comprehend.
prayer: Ask the Lord to help you always walk in the newness of the mind.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible In One Year: II Corinthians 9-10

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Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Finding Grace

 

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Hebrews 4:16 (NET) Therefore let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace whenever we need help.

Yomi found that unlike him, Gbenga walked in the divine nature and enjoyed the benefits of the divine life; the promises of God found fruition in his life. Yomi wondered why that wasn't the case with him. "But I quote scriptures like Gbenga, why don't they work in my life as they do in Gbenga's life?". After living with Gbenga for some time, Yomi observed that unlike him, Gbenga lived a truly holy life before the Lord. This was the reason why he could appropriate the promises of God so easily.

In today's verse, notice that from the throne of grace, mercy is received but grace is found. In order to receive a thing, we need to simply ask. But in order to find something, we need to seek [for] it. Jesus was the one who said 'ask and you shall receive, seek and you shall find'(Matthew 7:7). In order to walk in God's grace, we need to first receive mercy. Mercy is the reason we have righteousness (right standing) with God, but grace is the reason(empowerment) we can walk in holiness and thus appropriate our privileges as sons of God (See 2 Corinthians 7:1). Holiness is required for God's people to possess their possessions (see Obadiah 1:17).

In order to find grace, you need to search for it with the lamp of God's word. This lamp is oiled by the indwelling Holy Spirit who gives life(understanding) to God's word. Listen and meditate on God's Word until it crystallizes grace in your spirit concerning that area of need.

The way by which we connect with grace is through faith. God has given us great and exceeding promises. As we believe these promises, we are able to walk in them and partake in the divine nature. But this is only possible after we, through grace, have escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust(see 2 Peter 1:4).

Go into today remembering that mercy is received but grace is found. Grace is found using the searchlight of God's word which imparts faith.

Prayer: Father, help me find grace to finish this race victoriously, in Jesus' name. Amen.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible In One Year: Luke 1-2

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Tuesday, June 22, 2021

In Whom Do You Trust?

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Psalms 91:2 (NKJV) ...My God, in Him I will trust.

After Lekan graduated from the University, it took him some time to get a good job. His uncle was the managing director of a big company, and he expected that his uncle would naturally help him secure a good job. But it just didn't happen. After waiting and waiting for his uncle, he decided to turn to God and pray. This was when he realized that concerning getting a good job, his trust was never really in the Lord, but in his uncle. (See Jer 17:5, Psa 146:3).

Whoever you put your trust in and depend on is the one who is your God. The reason why the Lord warns us against serving Mammon (even more than He warns us against serving the devil) is because it is very easy for a person to trust in his money and lean on the strength of mammon. Rich people fall into this trap more than the poor because they, more than other people, know the power of money. That is why the Lord particularly warns His children who are rich in this world not to put their trust in uncertain riches (see 1 Tim 6:17).

The way to trust in God is to acknowledge that all good things come from Him and He uses anyone and anything to help you. This means you now see people and systems as only channels that God uses and never as your source of help. You understand that God is your help, with or without them.

Go into today remembering that it is better to trust in the Lord than in any other. People fail, money fails, but they that trust in the Lord will not be moved (see Psalm 125:1).

Prayer: Ask the Lord to help you trust Him with all your heart.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible In One Year: Jeremiah 32-36

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Monday, June 21, 2021

I Will Say of the Lord

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Psalms 91:2 (NKJV)I will say of the Lord, "He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust."

Dare and Lekan were friends from when they were in elementary school. They both became born again and were both baptized in the Holy Spirit (with the evidence of speaking in tongues) on the same day. Dare would always say great things concerning God and concerning the things that he believed God was going to do for him. He said God was going to make him very great and prosperous in life. Lekan, on the other hand, was most sanctimonious. He didn’t say much about what God could do for him.

As they became older, Dare saw more of the power of God in every area of his life and was very prosperous. He later discovered that the prosperity and greatness he saw in his life were a result of the things he had always said of the Lord.

Today's Bible verse begins with ‘I will say of the Lord’. My question for you today is what are you saying of the Lord? Are you saying He is your provider and source? Are you saying He will keep you holy and present you blameless before God on that day? Are you saying He is your refuge and fortress? Or are you only seeing Him as the one who is displeased with sin?

What you say of the Lord is very important because it is what you say about Him that you will see manifest in your life.

Go into today determining to say definite great things about the Lord that you want to see in your life. As you continue to say these things in your heart and with your mouth, you will see the manifestations.

Prayer: Ask the Lord to help you say the right things.
—Abraham Dami Arigi

Bible in One Year: Job 37-38 (In Devotional Audio)
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Sunday, June 20, 2021

Inviting God Through Thanksgiving

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John 6:11 (NET) Then Jesus took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed the bread to those who were seated. He then did the same with the fish, as much as they wanted. 

I heard the story of a great servant of God who had a cook that was heavily possessed with unclean spirits. Each time she cooked for him, she would cast a spell on the food. But before he ate his food every time, he would give thanks and the spell would be removed. Unknown to her, the man of God knew all she was doing, but never fired her.

When her day of deliverance came, she was the one who confessed all she had been doing and how she would see her demonic spell leave the food each and every time. His secret was thanksgiving.

Have you noticed that Jesus gave thanks each time he broke bread? Have you noticed that He also gave thanks before he raised Lazarus from the dead? (See John 11:41). One of the easiest ways to usher God into a situation is to give Him thanks. When you acknowledge God by thanking Him, you are inviting His presence into whatever you are thanking Him for.
As you go into today, determine to magnify God in your life by being thankful in all things. This is the easiest way to invite God and see His mighty power at work in your life. Read 1 Thess 5:18 and Psalm 22:3 in KJV.

When we thank God we acknowledge Him for what He has done, when we praise Him, we acknowledge Him for who He is. Remember that the Lord inhabits the Praises of His people(Psalm 22:3). Let the presence of God fill your life this week; let thanking and praises never cease from your heart and mouth this week.

Prayer confession: Henceforth, I will thank the Lord in all situations; I will experience a greater dimension of His power and glory in my life. Amen.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible in One Year: Psalms 54-56 (In Devotional Audio)
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Saturday, June 19, 2021

Overcoming Fears


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Psalms 34:4-5 (NET) I sought the Lord’s help and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him for help are happy; their faces are not ashamed.

After Funbi's fiance met her parents, they fixed a wedding date and everyone in her family was happy for Funbi because she was now over 35. After some weeks, Funbi realized that the old fear of failure started lurking in her heart again. She went to the Lord in prayer concerning it as she did with her previous fears, but this time, the fear didn't seem to go away. She just had this feeling that her wedding wasn't going to hold.

When Funbi discussed this fear with her discipler, she educated Funbi that seeking the Lord could also involve fasting because fasting helps to humble us and cause the grace of God toward us to be multiplied. Funbi decided to go on a fast the following Saturday. She put off her phone and shut off all engagements for the day. She spent the whole day behind closed doors, reading a faith-building book, praying in the spirit, and praising God for giving her victory over those her fears.


After doing this, she realized that the fear in her heart had faded away. She went on to have a very successful wedding according to schedule. Somehow she knew that if she did not conquer that fear, it would have materialized and her wedding would not have held. She knew this because that was her experience with such fears in the past, they always materialized.


Turning aside to seek the Lord in prayer and fasting is usually more effective when certain fears have refused to leave your heart even after you have prayed about them normally. The problem is that when many believers fast, they do not focus on God and ensure that their hearts are rid of all fear and anxiety, they rather focus on demons and their enemies. But the biggest battleground is in the mind. Through the word of God and prayers, we are to bring into captivity every thought and imagination that is contrary to the revealed will of God (see 2 Corinthians 10:5).


Go into today remembering that fear and anxiety allowed to linger in the heart of a believer is a precursor to defeat.

Prayer: Lord, help me seek you until my fears and anxieties fade away. Help me walk perpetually in the victory of faith, In Jesus' name. Amen.
-Pst Abraham Damilola Arigi
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Yearly Bible Reading: II Samuel 10-14 (In Devotional Audio)

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Friday, June 18, 2021

The Manifold Grace Of God

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1 Peter 4:10 (KJV) “As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God".

Duke graduated as the best graduating student in his faculty and won all the academic awards for the year. He set a new record in academic excellence in that faculty. Because of his performance, he was retained in the school, won several scholarships, and in few years, earned several other degrees including three doctorate degrees. Because of his academic excellence, he became really proud. He, however, could not get married because no woman was willing to live with him because of his arrogance. It was at his 45th birthday that he discovered that his academic excellence was simply the product of a manifestation of God's grace. This humbled him so much that he repented from his pride and began to ask God's grace for marriage. He got married few months after this discovery.

The grace of God is many-sided and is manifested in varied forms, however, the purpose is the same; ministry (service) to the body of Christ and to all people by extension.

The grace of God manifested in Bezaleel (Exo. 31:3) and Daniel (Dan.1:17) as wisdom, understanding, knowledge, and skill. It manifested in Solomon as wisdom and power to get wealth (1 Kings 10:23). It manifested in Elijah as [spiritual] power and authority (1 Kings 17:1) and in Deborah as leadership acumen(Judges 5:7), just to list a few.

If you enjoy uncommon strength in an area of life, it is most likely because you have found grace in that area, and if you are week in other areas it is most likely because you are yet to find grace in such areas. If you have found an area of weakness, the appropriate and godly response should be to ask for grace. Keep on asking and seeking until strength is manifested in that area (2 Corinthians 12:9), and if you have found strength, keep a humble disposition (1Peter 5:5).

Go into today remembering that the grace that you have received was given to you for the sake of edifying(building up and embellishing) the body of Christ.

Prayer: pray against pride in your area of strength and ask for grace in your area of weakness(s).
—Dr. Emmanuel James

Bible in One Year: Exodus 21-24 (In Devotional Audio)
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Thursday, June 17, 2021

Promotion Comes From God


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Psalms 75:6-7 (NKJV) For exaltation comes neither from the east Nor from the west nor from the south.But God is the Judge: He puts down one, And exalts another.

 

Since Emeka knew he could not do the unrighteous things his colleagues were doing to lobby for the new post everyone wanted, he decided he was not going to be disappointed or sad if he did not get the job.

He was the best at what he did, but at that point, being the best wasn’t all it took to get the job.

As he read the Bible one evening, it occurred to him that he could simply pray and ask God for the promotion. He remembered that promotion does not come from the east nor from the west (your span of achievements) nor from the south (your location or where you come from), but it comes from God. As soon as he finished praying, he knew he was going to get the promotion. The next weeks to come, things played out in his favor and he got the job.

Do you seek to be promoted? Stop trusting in the arm of flesh and in human maneuvers, but trust in God. Remember that promotion comes from God. You can simply ask Him for your promotion. He loves it when we ask Him in faith for the things we want.

If a man gets his own promotion by human maneuvers, it is because a man who God wants to promote is not in the picture.

Go into today knowing that if God promotes you, no one can demote you. If He opens a door, no one can close it (see Rev 3:7). Remember that the greatest exaltation anyone can receive is the one that sets him up for eternal glory with Christ.

—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible in One Year: II Corinthians 6-8 (In Devotional Audio)
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Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Abide Under God's Covering

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Psalms 91:1 (NKJV) He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
Dwelling in the secret place of the Most High is a choice we can all make as believers, but unfortunately, it is also a choice we can refuse to make. How do we refuse to make this choice? By not abiding in the Lord but going back to the world. Those in the world are ruled by lust, greed, and pride.

In John 15, the Lord told His disciples who believed in Him to abide in Him and He would abide in them. Those days, I used to wonder what it really meant to abide in the Lord, then I heard a song written by a friend of mine (who used to be a very notorious unbeliever but today is now a pastor and one of the truest believers I know). His song helped me properly understand what it means to abide in the Lord. A part of the song goes thus:

I would settle down, settle down, I'll sit back and relax
I won't run away, anymore, I'll sit back and relax
I'll be faithful unto you, I'll sit back and relax
I'll be faithful unto you, I'll sit back and relax...

You can see the writer say "I won't run away anymore". The question is 'runaway how?' He used to be in the word and had built an 'eco-system' there, most of his friends were in the world. Running away for him meant going back to the world, it meant not being truly faithful to the Lord in all things, It meant living a life of compromises and doing things he knows are wrong for a believer to do.

Abiding in the Lord means staying in Him. Jesus tells us to abide in Him because there is a possibility of not abiding in Him even though we have been grafted into Him(see Rom 11:19-22). There is a possibility to want to go back to the world because of its pleasures and deceitfulness of riches.

Go into today remembering that what it means to dwell in the secret place of the Most High is to abide in the Lord and be faithful to Him. Repent of every unfaithfulness and determine that from today, with the help of the Spirit, you would abide in Him.
Remember that it is those who abide in Him that enjoy His universal protection and covering(read Psalm 91).

Pray: Lord, help me abide in you and be fruitful in every good work.  Amen.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible in One Year: Mark 15-16  (In Devotional Audio)
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Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Under The Shadow of the Almighty

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Psalms 91:1 (NKJV)He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

After Ladi accepted Christ, she still didn’t fully understand what it meant to dwell in the secret place of the Most High. Because of this, she was still a fearful person.

One day, she had to pass through a street that was known for being very dangerous at night, especially for young ladies. But she didn’t have any other choice but to walk through that street on her way home that night. She saw a group of very bad-looking boys staring at her, and she could hear her heartbeat because of fear, but she simply walked as fast as she could to pass them.

The next time she went for hospital evangelism, she saw a wounded young man who had been in a bike accident. She preached the gospel to him and he accepted Christ. He later told her that he was one of the young men staring at her that night. He said they wanted to steal her bag and harm her, but there was a strange presence that scared and withheld them. He said that was an experience he had not forgotten.

Ladi now understood that she had been dwelling under the shadow of the Almighty.

Those who dwell in the secret place of the Most High abide under the shadow of the Almighty. The way to dwell in the secret place of the Most High is to abide in Christ and let His words abide in you (see John 15:7). This is only possible when you have received Christ as Lord and savior.

Go into today remembering that you are under the shadow of the Almighty if you are in Christ.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 27-31 (In Devotional Audio)
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Monday, June 14, 2021

Before You Pray “Let Thine Will Be Done"

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Colossians 1:9 (KJV) “For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding”

Eric was a Nigerian student who had just finished his secondary school education. Having heard about doing the will of God, he prayed like this, “Lord Jesus, let your will be done in my life; the choice of my course of study and university to attend”. He, however, needed to have at least two choices for the course he intended to study and the university to attend since these were required by the examination board. After waiting for some time, the examination board released the admission list, fortunately, his name made the list. What he did not like however was the course he was offered. He began to wonder, “could this be God's will for me?" So, he decided to pray. While praying, he fell into a trance where he saw a preacher teaching on today's text. “Seek to know the will of God first, then insist on doing it," the preacher said.

After the trance, he changed his prayer style and prayed like this, “Lord Jesus, please what is your will regarding my university education; the course to study and University to attend?" It did not take long before the answer came. By the next year, he was a university student and was sure he was doing God's will.

Like Eric, many have sincerely prayed for the will of the Lord to be done in many situations, and after a long period of praying, they still didn't know the will of God. If you're in this category, you may wish to change your prayer from asking that God's will be done to asking for what His will is.

Note that, before Jesus prayed “not my will, but Thine be done” (Luke 22:42), He already knew what God's will was.

Go into today knowing that before praying for the will of God to be done, seek to know what His will is first. It is after you must have known what the will of God is that you can then insist on it being done.

Prayer: Ask the Lord to fill you with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.
—Dr. Emmanuel James

Bible in One Year: Job 35-36 (In Devotional Audio)
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Sunday, June 13, 2021

Multiplying Grace

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2 Peter 1:2-3 (NET) May grace and peace be lavished on you as you grow in the rich knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord! I can pray this because his divine power has bestowed on us everything necessary for life and godliness through the rich knowledge of the one who called us by his own glory and excellence.

When Kent was sixteen years old, he joined a secret society in his neighborhood and got mixed up in a lot of bad things. By the time he was 19, he heard the gospel and accepted the Lord Jesus. Because the secret society he joined was deeply involved in occult practices, he knew how to conjure demons and demonstrate some demonic power to do magic and other dark arts. But after he became a believer and was delivered, he wanted also to know the power of God and walk in it because he knew that Jesus had more power than the demons he knew. He also understood that in order to demonstrate the power of a spirit, you have to know that spirit and understand how to please it.

After studying the lives of those he knew who walked in the power of God, he observed that some things were common with all of them. He observed that they were all baptized in the Holy Spirit and they spoke in tongues, they were very conscious of the presence of the Holy Spirit within them and never felt alone, and they had an unusual sense of closeness with God and love for Him that was evident.

The grace of God is the power of God at work within the believer that causes him to do the things of God. It is through this power that we cast out devils, manifest authority over sin, heal the sick, possess our possessions in God, manifest the miraculous, etc. If a believer desires to walk in multiplied grace, he must walk in fellowship with the Lord through the Holy Spirit. One reason God made man is to fellowship with man and have a family of sons and daughters. He wants so much to share His glory and joy with you.

We see from today's today's Bible Text that grace and peace is lavished on us as we grow in the rich knowledge of God. We are expected to continually grow in the knowledge of God as we spend time with Him through His word and prayers.

Go into today determined to draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Remember that God wants to be close to you more than you want to be close to Him. He loves you and is on your side.

Prayer: Father, teach me your ways so that I will walk in your reality. Help me to be closer to you more each day. Amen.
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—Abraham Dami Arigi

Bible in One Year: Psalms 51-53 (In Devotional Audio)
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Saturday, June 12, 2021

Appropriating the Grace of God 2

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Titus 2:11-12 (NET) For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all people. It trains us to reject godless ways and worldly desires and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age

After Preston received God's salvation by putting his faith in Jesus, he found that the grace of God was now at work in his life. This manifested in power over sin, demons, diseases, etc. He realized that the more he put his faith in Christ's faithfulness as the reason he would be saved, the more the grace of God found expression in his life. Sadly, a time came that he adopted some strict rules and regulations, and unknowingly started trusting in them and his ability to keep them as the reason why he would be saved- he stopped trusting in the faithfulness of Christ. He noticed that the grace he enjoyed that made sin lose its power was no more present. He now lived a miserable life that was bedeviled by the power of sin, sin consciousness, and guilt. As he asked the Lord for mercy, he was reminded of the simplicity of the gospel he received when he first believed, and how joyful he was when his faith for salvation was in Christ alone and not in his works. He repented and started depending on Christ alone. He now did good works not because he wanted to earn salvation, but because he was sure that he had it through Christ, and wanted to please the one who is the reason He is saved.

We saw previously that in order for us to appropriate [the dividends of] grace, faith is necessary (Romans 4:16). We see from today's Bible Text that grace teaches us to deny fleshly lusts, and empowers us to be godly, but in order for this to happen, we have to continually put our faith in Christ alone as the reason why we are saved. When we do this, we would find that the power and wisdom that practically keeps us from fleshly lusts would become part of us. But if we decide to begin to depend on rules and regulations as our way to salvation, we would do this at the expense of grace.

Go into today thanking the Lord for the grace that empowers you to live in this world as His son. Ask that the Lord will deliver you from the pitfall of legalism and self-righteousness.

Confession: I walk in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. I walk in power and dominion. Sin has no power over me, in Jesus' name. Amen.
—Abraham Dami Arigi

Bible in One Year: II Samuel 5-9 (In Devotional Audio)
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Friday, June 11, 2021

Avoiding Lukewarmness


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Revelation 3:15-16 (KJV) I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

Chinenye's biggest challenge that made her leave that liberal church in the city was that she had become lukewarm and spiritually weak as a result.

In trying to get back on fire for Jesus again, Chinenye observed that certain things responsible for her becoming lukewarm had to be dealt with. The first was that she was attending a church full of lukewarm and cold believers. She realized that one of the ways hot water becomes lukewarm is by continually mixing it with cold or lukewarm water.
Her biggest challenge now was that her fiance was also lukewarm. He, like her, used to be on fire for Jesus when he was on campus, but he wasn't very sound in doctrine and was now lukewarm too because of his environment.

Chinenye realized that in order for her to be restored to her place of spiritual fervor, she couldn't continue to fellowship with lukewarm and compromising believers. She made this clear to her fiance, and together, they started seeking God again.

There are various reasons why believers who were once hot can become lukewarm. One of such reasons is because of fellowship with unbelievers or compromising (lukewarm) believers. In 1 Corinthians 5:11, we see a warning to us not to so much as break bread with a compromising believer. Why? Because God does not want us to become lukewarm like them. Spiritual disease is very contagious.

Go into today remembering that being lukewarm is a dangerous place to remain as a believer(see Today's text). If there was a time in your life that you were more on fire for Jesus than now, it is indeed a matter of concern. Take out time this week to seek the Lord in prayer and fasting, and ask Him to restore your fervor and show you to plug all areas of leakages.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, please keep me on fire for you all the days of my life, in Jesus name. Amen.
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-Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible in One Year: Exodus 17-20 (In Devotional Audio)
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Thursday, June 10, 2021

Be Careful Not To Live By Human Traditions 2

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Colossians 2:8 (NET)Be careful not to allow anyone to captivate you through an empty, deceitful philosophy that is according to human traditions and the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

Chinenye was already in a relationship leading to marriage. She found out that her fiance was from a community known to be very diabolical and demonic. They had certain very strong laws in that community. For example, if a woman in that community or one who married them committed adultery or her nakedness was seen by another man, she would die within seven days. Neighboring communities were scared of marrying into that community because of many such laws and repercussions.

Chinenye didn't know this until she was now engaged to Ben. She initially did not mind because she did not ever plan to commit adultery in her life. But what started bothering her was the fact that Ben didn't see that there was something wrong with the fact that even believers from his community were still victims to the powers of the covenant of his community. Ben said as far as he was concerned, those rules in his community are in keeping with the rules of God, so there was nothing wrong with them.

In as much as the laws in that community looked consistent with the Law of God, those laws were given by demons and enforced by demons. A believer is not to rejoice in such laws and systems, but through consecration to Christ and focused prayers, he is to reject them and cling only unto his new spiritual identity as a citizen of heaven. Refusing to do so would only bring him under the power of elemental spirits.

Go into today remembering that as a believer, your citizenship is in heaven (see Philippians 3:20). The culture and tradition that now rule your life must be that of God's kingdom.

Prayer: Lord, help me to see myself as you see me so that I can walk in that reality (Read 2 Corinthians 5:17).
—Abraham Dami Arigi

Bible in One Year: II Corinthians 4-5 (In Devotional Audio)

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Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Be Careful Not To Live By Human Traditions

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Colossians 2:8 (NET)Be careful not to allow anyone to captivate you through an empty, deceitful philosophy that is according to human traditions and the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

After Chinenye left that liberal church, she started attending a church that was at the other extreme. They had so many rules and regulations that it was almost impossible to keep up. There were always "visions" concerning people who went to hell because they used jewelry or even perfume, and they taught that certain people’s names could not be written in the book of life because their names didn't have scriptural roots. It didn't take Chinenye long to realize that she was coming out of one bondage and entering into another.

A major problem today among many believers is balance. Many in running away from one extreme swing to the other extreme. But whenever there appear to be two extremes on a matter of doctrinal difference in the body of Christ, the truth usually is around the middle. If there are those who some accuse of taking the grace of God as a license for sinning, and there are those who the others accuse of being legalistic, the truth of the gospel is usually in the middle of the two extremes. The grace of God is not license, but it cannot be reduced to rules and regulations.

Today, all [human] traditions not rooted in Christ would find their root and empowerment (in the form of retributions for violation) in elemental spirits. Whenever believers begin to peddle the tradition of men as part of their creed, they are exposing themselves to elemental spirits.

Go into today remembering that any tradition that does not have Christ at the center of it (but seeks to undermine the finished works of Christ for the believer) is a toxic tradition for any believer.

Prayer: Lord, deliver me from following every tradition that may act as a limiting force against my participation in your divine life. Amen.
—Abraham Dami Arigi

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Bible in One Year: Mark 13-14 (In Devotional Audio)

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Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Just As You Have Received Christ

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Colossians 2:6-7 (NET) Therefore, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and firm in your faith just as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.

Chinenye accepted the Lord Jesus during her first year on campus. She continued to grow in her knowledge of the Lord through the ministry of her campus fellowship while she was on campus.

When she graduated and started her life in the city, she started attending a church that was much more liberal than the fellowship in which she grew. She saw that in that church, the ladies and young men dressed ‘anyhow’, and were quite careless with certain moral boundaries.
Chinenye started gradually condoning and tolerating certain things she wouldn't condone before.

Three years passed and Chinenye had blended into this new church quite well. One evening in the mall, she bumped into a lady who she had led to the Lord while on campus. This lady was so excited to meet her again because of the way the Lord used Chinenye to save her and deliver her from many demonic entanglements. When Chinenye got home that night, she wept and wept because meeting that lady made her realize how far she had fallen. Here was a lady she led to the Lord years ago, but she knew her current spiritual state was a shadow of what it used to be. She knew she did not have the power to disciple anyone the way she did back then. Her life was now full of compromises and empty platitudes to appease her dying conscience.

When Chinenye got back to her senses and wanted to be restored back to the height from which she had fallen, she called the person who discipled her on campus. After discussing for hours, they found that Chinenye’s backsliding was due to her attending a liberal church full of indisciplined baby Christians pampered by teachers who didn't have the ability to raise disciples of Christ because of their love for this world. They agreed that Chinenye would have to leave that Church.

I have found that many times, terrible backsliding happens when believers do not continue to live their lives in the Lord the way they received Him(see today's verse). People get into serious problems when they try to upgrade their faith and become more modern or liberal. They get into serious pitfalls when they try to ‘fix what is not broken’.

Go into today remembering that the best way to continue in the Lord is just as you have received Him. The creed that was strong enough to convert you from a hopeless sinner into a saint can keep you growing in the faith if your focus is The Kingdom. As you grow, you will realize what is essential and non-essential in doctrine. But remember that any Apostolic work that could convert you from being a sinner should never be despised but celebrated.

Prayer: Dear Lord, please deliver me from every pitfall on this my walk of faith. Help me continually grow until I see you face to face. Amen.
—Abraham Dami Arigi
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Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 22-26 (In Devotional Audio)

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Monday, June 7, 2021

Appropriating the Grace of God 1

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Romans 4:16 (KJV) Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all

Lara was brought before a kind judge when she was charged for "breaking and entering" for the 3rd time. She was homeless. She ran away from the foster home the government placed her because her foster parents hated her. She was to be sentenced to prison because she had just turned 18, but when the judge heard her story, he had mercy on her. He did not sentence her to prison but ruled that she should pay a small fine. After the court session, he told his office assistant to give her the money for the fine. He was also willing to pay for her to go to a vocational school in the city. This was going to cost thousands of dollars but he was willing to pay because she reminded him of his daughter that died of cancer several years ago.

Lara obtained mercy from the judge and collected the money to pay the court-mandated fine, but she did not believe that the judge was truly going to pay for her to go to that expensive vocational school so she never showed up again. The judge waited and waited for her to come to his office the next day as she was advised, but she never showed up again because she did not believe that the judge was going to be so gracious to her.

Mercy was the judge pardoning her. Grace was the judge offering to pay for her to go to school. She obtained mercy but she did not appropriate grace because she did not believe what was promised.

From today's Bible verse, we can see that if something is of grace, it has to be [received] by faith. In order to receive grace, we need faith to connect to it. This is why Scripture says "[f]or by grace are you saved through faith… "(Ephesians 2:8). The way by which we connect to the grace of God is through faith. God's mercy is the reason we are not consumed but have the privilege and access to grace (Lamentations 3:22), but in order for us to take advantage of grace, we need to have [living] faith.

Here's how grace works. God has given us great and exceeding promises that are tokens through which we can access dimensions of His extravagant grace (see 2 Peter 1:4). In order for us to walk in these dimensions of grace, we have to believe these promises, and act according to what we believe. For example, God has given us promises that if we believe them, we would walk in divine healing and health. But in order for us to appropriate this dimension of grace(divine health), we have to steadfastly believe those promises and act according to what we believe.

Go into today remembering that you are saved by grace through faith. Fight the good fight of faith (1 Timothy 6:12). Don't let the devil steal your faith because faith is the way by which you connect to grace.

Prayer: Lord, help me exercise the required faith to receive all the benefits of your grace towards me. Amen.
—Abraham Dami Arigi
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Bible in One Year: Job 33-34 (In Devotional Audio)

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Sunday, June 6, 2021

Love Unconditionally

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Matthew 24:12 (KJV)And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.

Tade was cheated time and time again by fake believers who sought to take advantage of his brotherly love and devotion to the body. It got to the point he now found it hard to love people who claimed to be brethren. He didn’t know that the enemy’s game plan was to make his love wax cold and quench his faith.

You see, it is the same heart with which you love the Lord that you also love His brethren. If your heart has taken up the attribute of love for the Lord, it will be impossible for you not to love His brethren and even other people created in His image. Walking in this kind of love is a product of faith in your heart, for faith working through love is the fruit of the renewed heart. Waning love ultimately leads to an eroding away of the faith in your heart. The victory that overcomes the world comes because of your faith (1 John 5:4).

The prince of this world tries to steal your faith by proliferating iniquity in the world. He knows that if your love [for the brethren and for other people created in the image of God] waxes cold, your faith will also wax cold, and you will no more be able to be an overcomer and overcome him .

The Lord has forewarned us that the love of many will wax cold because iniquity will abound. One reason He gives us this warning is because He does not want you to be among the ‘many’ whose love waxes cold.

Go into today remembering that you have been given the grace to walk in the divine nature. This nature is one that loves unconditionally.
Prayer: Ask the Lord to help you love unconditionally.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible in One Year: Psalms 48-50 (In Devotional Audio)
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Saturday, June 5, 2021

He Will Cleanse And Restore 2


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Isaiah 1:18 (NET) Come, let’s consider your options,” says the Lord. “Though your sins have stained you like the color red, you can become white like snow; though they are as easy to see as the color scarlet, you can become white like wool.

When Adam and Eve sinned against God in the garden of Eden, God who is all knowing still came to visit them in the cool of the day, but they were the ones running away from Him.
God called to them, but they were the ones who did not want to show up (see Gen 3:8-10).

This has been the story of fallen man from the beginning. We get ourselves dirty and instead of running towards God who alone can cleanse us, we run away from Him because of the condemnation in our hearts.

If they sin, many believers believe that God is angry with them and does not want to have anything to do with them because of their sins. Instead of coming to God for cleansing, they run away from Him and only become dirtier as a result.

In today's Bible verse, we see that it is the Lord that is calling sinners to come to Him, He's not asking them to run away from Him. He wants sinners to come to Him because He is the only one that can cleanse us of our sins.

Go into today remembering that even when our consciences condemn us, God is greater than our consciences and He wants to cleanse and restore us, not condemn us (see 1 John 3:20-22).
Those that run to Him are the ones who will be washed and restored. This was the secret David understood that Saul did not.

Prayer: Lord, deliver me from the latent pride that makes me run away from you instead of running to you for cleansing and restoration. Help me to understand that my justification before you is because of my faith in Christ(Romans 5:1), and I am accepted in the beloved(Ephesians 1:6).
-Abraham Damilola Arigi

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Bible in One Year: II Samuel 1-4 (In Devotional Audio)

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Friday, June 4, 2021

He Will Cleanse And Restore

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Matthew 8:2-3 (NET)And a leper approached, and bowed low before him, saying, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” He stretched out his hand and touched him saying, “I am willing. Be clean!” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed.

Chikpe was feeling very guilty and ashamed for something bad she had done in the past. Because of this, she refused to ever enter any church because she believed God was so angry with her that he would destroy her if he saw her in His house. She lived under this cloud of condemnation for three years until she had a heart-to-heart conversation with her mother's friend who was a believer. This woman was so loving and kind, and Chikpe felt like she could tell her anything. Because of the love of Christ that Chikpe saw through this woman, she became a child of God through faith in Christ Jesus.

In the days Jesus walked the earth, lepers were some of the most marginalized and avoided people because leprosy had no cure and it could be transmitted from person to person.

Somehow, the leper in today's Bible text knew and believed that Jesus had sufficient power to heal him if He wanted to. Because he had faith in Jesus to come to Him, Jesus did not cast him away. He would by no means cast away those that come to Him. He was cleaned of his leprosy; his stolen glory was restored.

Leprosy signifies impurity, stigma, things that society would judge you for, shame and reproach.
But just like in those days, Jesus is still cleansing leprosy(physical and spiritual) and restoring people's lost glory, if only they would come to Him.

Is there any stain in your life that may have made you run away from God all these years? Have your sins been so many that you don't believe you have hope of redemption?

Here's what the Lord is saying to you today:
Isaiah 1:18 (KJV) Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.


Go into today remembering that Jesus is still cleansing the unclean and restoring lost glories. Remember that He will by no means cast away anyone who comes to Him in faith (John 6:37, Hebrews 7:25).

Pray like this: Ask Him to cleanse you today and He will. Ask Him to restore every lost or stolen glory and He will. simply ask Him in faith.
—Abraham Damilola Arigi

Yearly Bible Reading: Exodus 13-16 (Available in Today's Audio)
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Thursday, June 3, 2021

Stop Counting

 
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Matthew 18:21-22 (RSV) Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.

Damilola let out a loud gasp when he read the last message.

Damilola was the brand manager of one of the fast-moving consumer goods producers. He had just come out of a review and planning meeting to review the performance of the last quarter and strategize for the next and had put his phone on silent mode and tucked it into the side pocket of his suitcase to avoid any distractions. He had just concluded the meeting when he brought out the phone and saw a notification of 12 missed calls and 3 messages. He quickly checked and noticed that 10 of the calls and all three of the messages were from his wife. All three messages read:

“Hey love, I got to leave a little earlier. I’ve gotten into town, just stuck in traffic. How are you?”

“Wow! You must be busy. You are not taking your calls and have not read my chats or replied my message. I am almost home now though. I’m famished and tired. See you soon”

“Honey I’m locked outside. Did you forget to leave my key in the usual place? Please…hurry. I need to freshen up and rest”

The last message was delivered an hour ago.

He dialed his wife’s number; it rang for a while, but no one picked it. When he arrived, she was at the neighbor’s and wouldn’t even speak to him. After some failed attempts to make her smile and lighten up, he blurted out in frustration,

“Why are you acting like you have never made a mistake” and went ahead to mention instances of her gaffe and blunders, he was stopped short at the third instance by the sound of her sobs.

In every relationship, more so close relationships, forgiveness is not to be treated as a fashionable icing on the cake, it is rather a critical ingredient. Forgiveness is a fundamental expression of love and must be expressed and dispensed generously. The God kind of forgiveness is one that does not keep an account of wrongs done it (See 1 Corinthians 13:6 NIV).

In today’s text you see Peter asking, ‘how many times do I have to dispense forgiveness to my offending brother? Do I need to count to the seventh offense before I let him have it?’ And Jesus was not just saying, ‘count higher’. He was basically saying, ‘stop counting’. In that passage, Jesus went ahead to narrate a story of a servant who was forgiven but refused to forgive another who had offended him. This is one of the bases for dispensing forgiveness; because we too have been forgiven.

Go into today determined to keep no record of wrongs, but to forgive just as the Lord forgives. Ask the Lord for the wisdom and strength to do this.
—Ikechukwu Mpama

Yearly Bible Reading: II Corinthians 1-3 (Available in Today's Audio)

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Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Enriched In All Things

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1 Corinthians 1:4-5 (DARBY)I thank my God always about you, in respect of the grace of God given to you in Christ Jesus; that in everything ye have been enriched in him, in all word [of doctrine], and all knowledge

The church in Corinth was indeed enriched in all things. Concerning spiritual gifts, they were not lacking in any and were behind no one (1 Cor 1:7). They had abundant demonstrations of the power of God in their midst, and because of this, they enjoyed great growth and admiration from the people of the city. Concerning physical and material prosperity, they had become rich through the power of grace (see 1 Cor 4:8). These Paul acknowledged and was glad for, but was concerned for them not to be carried away by these and ignore the weightier matters of the kingdom.

The secret of the Corinthian church’s enrichment was their enrichment in doctrine and knowledge, and Apostle Paul pointed this out (see Bible text above). They had skilled teachers like Apollos, and because of them, they were enriched in doctrine and knew how to appropriate the riches of Christ through faith. For faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Rom 10:17).

Whenever you see Christians who are walking in the grace and the manifestation of the riches and liberty of Christ, it is always because they have been properly taught in that regard. Christians who are not given to doctrine and learning are usually impoverished, oppressed, and wanting in many things. This is not the will of God.

Go into today remembering that Christians are disciples and disciples are students. We are students of the Word, and we never graduate from the school of the Spirit.
Ask the Lord to help you give yourself to the ministry of the word and to prayer (see Acts 6:4).
—Abraham Dami Arigi

Yearly Bible Reading: Mark 11-12 (Available in Today's Audio)
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Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Positioning Yourself for God's Mercy

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Malachi 3:17 (BBE) And they will be mine, says the Lord, in the day when I make them my special property; and I will have mercy on them as a man has mercy on his son who is his servant.

Maria wondered why she was so fortunate in places other members of her family were found to be unfortunate. Some said she had a bright star while others said she was just lucky, but she knew there was something at work in her favor that made her survive where others fail and thrive where others were crushed. As she grew in spiritual understanding, she discovered that what she had enjoyed in life was the mercy of the Lord.

Maria remembered that from when she was young, unlike her siblings, she feared the Lord, and even though she was not born again, she was conscious of the judgment of God. As soon as she became born again, she was devoted to the Service of the Lord in her local church assembly. Later on in life, she understood that serving the Lord and being devoted to His work in truth is a reason why people obtain the Lord's mercy.

We have seen previously that it is because of the Lord's mercy that we are not consumed. The reason why we would make it and fulfill our eternal destinies is because of the Lord's mercy, it is not because of our merit. We have also seen that the Lord's mercy is not arbitrary, but a person who positions himself rightly can obtain it. For example, Psalm 103:13 reveals that the Lord has mercy on them that fear Him.

From today's Bible verse, we can learn that there is extra mercy reserved for God's children that serve Him. It is not enough to be a child of God, it is important also to be a child that serves. You are either an unreasonable son or a serving son. The sons that serve are the ones who have access to God's mercy and grace more than others.

Go into today remembering that no matter who you are or where you are as a child of God, you can serve the Lord and consequently have access to greater measures of grace because of mercy. Remember that it is possible to be busy in service that is not acceptable to the Lord because of impure motives. Ask the Lord to purify your motives as you serve Him and increase in His grace.

Confession: I live to serve the Lord. I am pleasing Him in all respects and fruitful in every good work.
—Abraham Dami Arigi

Bible in One Year: Jeremiah 17-21 (In Devotional Audio)

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Monday, May 31, 2021

God Determines Your Boundaries

Listen to the Audio Version here: https://bit.ly/aud2537
Job 14:5 (NET) “Since man’s days are determined, the number of his months is under your control; you have set his limit and he cannot pass it."

 

Mr. Bright could no longer sleep because it was only two months to his 45th birthday. He had gone to the village to see the village priest but returned with no solution in view. “ I can't help you, it is your family's heritage, no male will live to be more than 45years again in your family because your great grandfather entered into a powerful covenant with the gods of the land," said the priest. Although Mr. Bright was a church goer, he still consulted with the village priest in hope  that help will come from him. “My grandfather and dad were both Christians yet they died just some days before they turned 45, I had better help myself now when it is still possible," he said to himself. But all hope was now lost since the village priest couldn't help him.

Your case may be like Me Bright's where certain negative patterns have been proven and accepted as generational and therefore should be lived with or managed. This will be true as long as you belong to Satan but as soon as you shift camp from the kingdom of darkness to the kingdom of light, it is no longer true.

For a child of God, it is God who determines your boundaries (limit), it is never Satan nor man. If you are a child of God but still suffer negative patterns, stand against those patterns in prayer remembering that because you belong to Jesus, it is only the speakings of God that are permitted to stand in your life (Lamentations 3:27). 

Worthy of note is the truth that curses only thrive where there is sin (1 Corinthians 15:56). To break away completely from curses and negative generational patterns, seek by the help of the Holy Spirit to stay away from sin. If there is a sin that seems unsurmountable, look for a respectable man of God or a senior friend who will join you in prayers. Keep confessing the sin and ask for God's mercy until complete freedom is attained.

Go into today knowing that whatever God has not commanded can be nullified.

Prayer: because I belong to Jesus, every negative pattern in my life and family is terminated in Jesus’ name. Amen!

—Dr. Emmanuel James

Bible in One Year: Job 31-32 (In Devotional Audio)

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Sunday, May 30, 2021

God Will Help You

Listen to the Audio Version here: https://bit.ly/aud2536
Psalms 27:13 (NET) Where would I be if I did not believe I would experience the Lord’s favor in the land of the living?

When Kemi graduated from university,  her self-confidence was on an all-time low because she believed that no one would want to employ her. She had very poor grades.

During the dark days of her life on campus, she contemplated suicide many times because of her academic failures and the harsh words she heard from her family members, but she held onto a knowing in her spirit from the Lord that she would still experience His goodness in the land of the living. When she was a teenager, The Lord had spoken prophetically to her that she would be a great woman in life. Those prophetic words were what she held onto and still believed her life would still count, in spite of how worthless she was made to feel.

 During her youth service year, she spent a great part of the time praying and seeking the face of the Lord-- He was her only hope in this life. Unlike others, she couldn't trust in the strength of her degree but only in the Lord. From spending time with the Lord she built up her confidence and boldness. She now realized that contrary to many voices she had heard before, she was not a failure. From that time, learned to trust in the Lord and depend on Him for direction.

She faced life with that confidence and doors that didn't open for the most brilliant people opened for her. Six years after she graduated, she was now a celebrated entrepreneur with many graduates as her employees. 

If you are a child of God, then know that God's plans for you are plans of good and not of evil, and as you abide in Him, you will see these plans come to fruition if you faint not (Gal 6:9, Jer 29:11). 

God's word to someone today is that you will soon see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Things will not always continue the way they have been but you will see good things from the Lord that will make you glad and rejoice. The Lord will prepare a table before you in the presence of your enemies, and you will experience an overflow of His blessings in every area of your life.

Go into today knowing that God who saved David from the jaws of death and made him king over Israel is the same God you worship. He will bring you into the greater days of your life as you continue to rely on Him in confidence (see Psa 27:13-14).

Prayer: Thank God because He is the one who lifts you up in His time. Thank Him because you know that when He blesses, no curse can linger.

— Abraham Damilola Arigi

Bible in One Year: Psalms 45-47 (In Devotional Audio)

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Saturday, May 29, 2021

Stars and Celebrities

Listen to the Audio Version here: https://bit.ly/aud2535

Daniel 12:3 (EasyEnglish) And those who are wise will shine like the bright sky. Those who help many people to obey God will shine like the stars always.

Pop Culture (Popular Culture) has greatly elevated the place of fame and fortune in society not minding so much how you come about them. The road to stardom has been paved into massive and broad highways much wider today than in past generations and many aspire greatly to be counted in the number, refusing to be deterred even when sometimes the prize comes at the price of defiled consciences and a loss of self and identity. So great is the allure that people go to ridiculous lengths to become one. It becomes more precarious now when notoriety is now tantamount to popularity and clout-chasing is sometimes rewarded with primetime social media coverage and eventually with the coronation of being an ‘influencer’.

George stared wide-eyed with surprise and shock as he viewed the Instagram upload of Tomi. The notification had popped up on his device and out of curiosity he had clicked it. He had immediately called Tomi, who happened to be one of the teenagers he was overseeing in church, and she bounced his call. After the third try he stopped calling and chatted her up instead.

GEORGE: Tomi, I just saw your Instagram upload now, and frankly, I was a torn between being shocked and being disappointed.

TOMI: But what exactly have I done wrong now sir?

GEORGE: Do we have to do this again? The last time I tried to talk to you about a similar issue you blocked me from viewing your Whatsapp status. Tomi, you are a child of God, there are trends and challenges that you should not be a part of at all. You should not be jumping into trends that do not glorify God, talk less of challenges that outrightly promote sensuality and nudity.

TOMI: Sir, I don’t see what I did wrong, its not like I was all exposed and naked. I only participated in the Hourglass Challenge to build my followership so I can get more likes and become an influencer. The bum-short and tank top I wore are just for the challenge's sake, I don’t wear them out.

GEORGE: You want to be an influencer…well God wants you to be an ‘Influencer’ too, but just not this type. Can I call you? It will be easier for me to explain certain things to you via call, chatting can be exhausting.

TOMI: (after some delay) Yes.

God’s kingdom has stars, they are those who turn many to righteousness, their feet are called beautiful (Isaiah 52:7; Romans 10:15), they are termed wise (Proverbs 11:30) and their labor brings about  celebration in heaven (Luke 15:10) and these stars will shine forever and ever. Join God’s array of stars today, submit yourself to Him and join the work of soul-winning now. These stars take up the “Challenge” of sharing God’s word online and offline. They are always part of the never-ending trend of praying for and witnessing to family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues.

Go into today reminded that you are a light to the world. Shine your light so that the world will see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
—Ikechukwu Mpama

Yearly Bible Reading: I Samuel 26-31 (In Devotional Audio)
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The Renewed Mind

Click here for the Audio Version: https://bit.ly/aud2559 1 Corinthians 2:9-10 (NKJV) But as it is written: "Eye has not seen, nor ear h...