Bible Lessons/Reminders

👨‍🦯 The spiritually blind 👨‍🦯

Spiritual blindness is when we’re unable to SEE God or to comprehend His message. This is a grievous condition that affects not only the spiritually blind individual but also his followers. Look at the condition and state of many churches today! The Gospel has been watered down so much that preachers are now preaching chocolate-coated lies thus weaving a sinister deception.

We’re in serious trouble if we don’t sit and read/study the Word. We’re in serious trouble if we wait for the preacher to tell us how to act, think, or feel. We’re in serious trouble if we continue to follow along the yellow-bricked road with this sweet-tongued preacher, for a spiritually blind person cannot lead God’s sheep into a spiritual relationship with Christ.

It’s time to wake up and open your eyes to deception, for Jesus is returning soon.

Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.

Matthew 15:14

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Out of a job… now what?

As the French say: C’est la vie!

Life is unpredictable. Sometimes, that’s the beauty of it. Sometimes, it’s not. 

Hmm, where do I start? I actually have no idea where to begin, but let’s rewind back to the summer of ’69. Nah, just joking… but I hope you caught the Bryan Adams’ reference! Let me rewind back to when I was jobless.

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When I left Secondary school, I went job hunting like everyone else. Back then, although there were lots of advertisements on the job market, an actual job was hard to get for someone like me who had just left school with future plans to attend a college in Atlanta. My resume was unpolished and on top of it, my family was in the middle of bankruptcy, so I had to forget about the college of my dreams. I recall going from interview to interview and even registering with two job agencies to no avail. It took a while, but then I registered with the On-the-Job Training Programme, and I was called within a month (?).

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I was placed with an upholstery company. OJT didn’t pay the trainees back then. What they did was place you within wherever they thought was fine even if it was at a KFC, and whatever the company decided to pay the trainee was not the ministry’s problem. My salary was $150 a week (*Le gasp!*). The employers were advantageous and it was during this time, I started to seek God… although it’ll take a few years later for me to actually seek Him 100%. Given that I was anemic and a headache sufferer of sorts, this place was toxic for me to stick around, so I left despite the fact that things were looking gloomy.

Now, memory is something I tend to leave in the sands of time whether good or bad, as I like to live in the moment, but I recall signing up with a marketing company for training. However, I left after the first training day after witnessing my trainer lying about the products he was peddling to an old lady. That was not my thing. I don’t care if that’s a way to make a living, it’s wrong to lie to people about what you’re selling. It took a while, but I eventually signed up with the MuST programme. I honestly didn’t want to do the programme for I did not want to be a part of the Hospitality Industry, but God had plans for me, and although those 6 months flew by pretty quickly, it was some of the best moments I’ve ever experienced as I was placed within a French bakery/restaurant. There weren’t French people working there, but whenever the well-dressed French bigwigs came through, it was lit! And if you’re a reader of this blog, you guys know how I love anything French!

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After this training experience, I grew to appreciate the hospitality industry, and I came to realize that this was where God wanted me to be as I had training to complete in different areas of my life, be it emotionally, financially, physically, or spiritually. 

Now, fast-forward.

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God placed me within one of the best institutions for tourism and hospitality allowing me to experience what it was like to work in an academic library. It was really the opportunity of a lifetime as I’ve always wanted to work in a library ever since I was little. I started out in the Student Services department, actually, and after the OJT contract came to an end, the HR manager at that time asked me to come in temporarily to work in the lab, but the library was short-staffed and the Librarian asked for me to hold on, on evenings… it eventually became permanent when I was offered to stay on and a contract and I know that this was all God’s doing.

However, things started going downhill from 2017 and it finally escalated last month which resulted in the institution permanently closing its doors. I’ll like to go in-depth, but this is not the place or time for it.

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The doors are closed temporarily. It’s not going to be closed forever, but I believe that closed doors give us the opportunity to grow. God closes doors to remind us that He is still in charge, to bring us (back) closer to Him, and to grow us in many areas. James 1 reminds us that patience is the key to growth. 

But let patience have her perfect work,
that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.

James 1:4

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Now what?

In a world where people are running scared of a pandemic instead of trusting in the Lord, and one in which the government has no money, I put my trust in the Lord. I’ve been at peace and calm throughout this situation because I decided to lean on and trust God, not man. 

I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,
    and in his word I put my hope.

Psalm 130:5

I was blessed to be a part of such memories I’ll hold dear, for it was there I met my bestie Tammy, a meeting I’m eternally grateful for. I may not be able to see the future, but God can, and I know that He has my back. We may not see it now, but when God closes a door, He opens the one He desires you to enter. 

I’ve been working on this post since August, but for some reason, I couldn’t seem to sit down long enough to actually focus on completing it… as many other half-finished articles currently collecting dust in drafts. Also, also, I apologize for this being a little too lengthy, but it was the direction I was led to write in. 

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Life is unpredictable.
Sometimes, that's the beauty of it,
sometimes, it's not.
Bible Lessons/Reminders

Return to your First Love!

Come, let us return to the One Who first loved us. Let us burn our idols, take celebrities down from the pedestals, and put away our fleshy desires. O, Repent! Let us wash our hands, clothe ourselves in righteousness, and ask the Lord to make our sins white as snow.

Come, let us be holy as our Father is holy. Let us love and serve as Christ did. Let us be guided by the Holy Spirit. Let us draw closer to God, abide in Him, and walk in His ways.

Come, let us return to the One Who first loved us.

Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.

Revelation 2:5

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Jesus will fix it!

And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.

1 Peter 5:10

There is always going to be trouble in our way, but no matter what we’re going through, God is still in control.

Our struggles might be weighing our shoulders down, but we don’t have to carry the weight of the world when we could give our burdens to Jesus, and He’ll fix it.

So, keep your eyes on Jesus, and hang on, for better days are coming.

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Stepped, stepped in the furnace a long time ago
Shadrech, Meshach and Abendigo
No, they were not worried, oh, this I know
They knew that Jesus will fix it after while

Trouble in my way, I have to cry sometimes
Trouble in my way, I have to cry sometimes
I lay awake at night, but that’s alright
I know my Jesus will fix it after while

 

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Bible Study

Exodus III: The return to Egypt

In case you missed it:

Bible Study Guide 

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I’m happy to finally return to the study of Exodus after the lapse in concentration due to severe headaches. Praise God for this period for despite the pain, I got to truly enjoy rest. To pick up where we’ve left off, let’s turn our Bibles to the fourth chapter. 

Aaron joins Moses

Scripture in focus: Exodus 4

4:1 > Even after the lengthy conversation/explanation that Moses had with God in 3:14-22, Moses is still doubtful. Although God promised that He’ll be with him, Moses panics over the people not believing him.

4:2-5 > Miracles are signs for those that didn’t believe, and God gives Moses the power to work miracles so that His people may believe starting with the rod that became a part of the many miracles pertaining to the delivery of God’s people. Here, we see it become a serpent that Moses runs away from, but when God commanded him to take it by the tail which is the most dangerous place to handle a snake, Moses had enough faith to do so and come away unharmed.

We might ask, where was this faith in the first place when God came to him? God was building it up. And why snakes? Perhaps it’s due to the fact that the Egyptians had a fascination with snakes… as I do.

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4:6-8 > Leprosy was a dreaded disease that was thought to be incurable. In these verses, we see Moses puts his hand into his bosom and when he takes it out, it’s leprous. Again, he places said hand in the same place, but this time when he takes it out, it’s back to normal. A thing or two I took away from this:

* Moses was never to work miracles by his own power or for his own praise. He was supposed to work them by the power of God and for His glory.

* By the power of God, Moses would bring diseases upon Egypt.

4:9 > If the two miracles were doubted, then the water would become blood. This foreshadowed the first plague. Since Egypt was dry land, water was of utmost importance to them, so much, that they worshiped the Nile.

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4:10-12 > After all of these things, Moses comes up with another excuse: “I can’t speak well.” What he means is that he is unable to articulate his thoughts in flowing speech, and I can relate for I write better than I speak. However, Moses was brought up in an Egyptian palace and was exposed to one of the best education systems in his time, and he was indeed mighty in words and deeds (Acts 7:22). He didn’t need a translator or a course in public speaking, all Moses needed to do was trust the Lord. If the Lord could’ve spoken to him through a burning bush, God could speak through him in front of Pharaoh.

God is not interested in our abilities for He’s the One Who gives them to us anyway. He’s not interested in our eloquent speeches, just our willingness.

4:13-16 > Moses tries to wriggle out one last time by saying that he’s up to the task if God insists, but it’ll be better if God sends someone else. God is rightly angry at Moses’ unwillingness, but He commissions Moses’ brother Aaron for the role of spokesperson. God already knew that Moses was going to throw the Book of Excuses at Him, so He already had Aaron on his way. 

4:17-18 > Despite Moses’ unwillingness, he had the “staff of God” and was given the power to perform the signs and miracles. Aaron was just the mouthpiece. Moses then seeks permission from his father-in-law to leave, so he could go and accomplish God’s purpose. 

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4:19-20 > There was no one waiting to kill Moses upon his return to Egypt for the ones that sought his life were all dead. Moses takes his wife, sons, and the “staff of God” to return to the dreaded Egypt.

4:21 > God tells Moses how events will unfold in Egypt. The hardening of Pharaoh’s heart shows God’s direct involvement in the affairs of men so that His purpose will be accomplished. Pharaoh refuses to believe in the One True God, for he was a god himself, and so, God had to harden his heart – later on, Pharaoh will harden his own heart – to bring judgement upon a mortal masquerading as a god on earth and for resisting His will.

4:22-23 > The firstborn son was special and sacred to the ancient Egyptians and God considered the nation of Israel his firstborn son and the Pharaoh was not going to have it. Who was this God? Why is an entire nation special to Him? Pharaoh was considered the favored son of his false god Ra, but God was going to let the mortal ruler know that Israel was His covenant people, and He was going to reveal Himself through them. In order for Israel to truly serve God, they needed to leave the world (Egypt) behind.

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4:24-26 > God inflicts an illness upon Moses for he had neglected his duty by not circumcising his second son. Zipporah didn’t approve of this practice as we can see from these verses, but Moses is the head of the household, and he knew the importance of this rite, so he shouldn’t have listened to his wife. Zipporah eventually performed the rite swiftly for she understood the danger of her husband’s life albeit repulsed. She threw the skin at Moses’ feet showing her disapproval of him as a husband because of this blood covenant with God. God let Moses go, but Zipporah was in her feelings still expressing her dislike for the Hebrew practice.

4:27-28 > Aaron and Moses reunites on Mount Horeb and became brothers in ministry that very day. Moses told his brother everything concerning the mission from God and the signs he has been given. 

4:29-31 > The brothers met with the elders and everything functions smoothly: Aaron the effective mouthpiece, Moses the demonstrator. The people believe, and they humbled themselves before God and worships Him.

Related scripture reading:

^ John 14:11 > Believe in Jesus for the very works’ sake. Because of the many signs and wonders, the people who followed Jesus believed. 

Additional Notes

^ To expand a little on 4:2-5 where God uses the simple shepherd’s staff in Moses’ hand, God likes to use what’s in our hands to bring glory to Him. In John 6:9, God uses the five loaves and two fishes in a boy’s hand to feed many. He used the stone and sling in David’s hand to bring down Goliath (1 Samuel 17:49). There are a few other examples throughout the Bible.

^ The book of Exodus attributes the hardening process ten times to God (verse 21; 7:3; 9:12; 10:1, 20, 27; 11:10; 14:4, 8, 17), and nine times to the Pharaoh himself (7:13-14, 22; 8:15, 19, 32; 9:7, 34-35). The first two references (verses 21 and 7:3), state that God “will harden” the Pharaoh’s heart without specifying when that will be. The next ten references (the only exception is in 9:12), indicate that the Pharaoh hardened his own heart (via bible-studys.org).

Reference/Aids

* Prayer

* The Holy Spirit

* The Holy Bible

* Historical research

* The ever trusted bible-studys.org

Thank You

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Devotional Nuggets

Devotional Nugget #15: Making God our #1 priority

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

Proverbs 91:1

I’m guilty. I’m guilty of not spending enough time with God despite having all the time on my hands lately. And every night after the day comes to a close, I promise to do better the next day, but I do the same thing again when He blesses me with a brand-new one. I finally decided that I had enough and made the decision to start spending time with Him like the old days no matter how busy I might get. 

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God loves when we spend time with Him. It doesn’t matter if we can recite the entire Bible, it doesn’t matter if we sing worship songs during the day, if we’re not spending time with God, we’re spiritually dead. When Jesus was here on earth, He always made time to spend with God no matter what (Matthew 14:23)

We live in a world where work reigns supreme where we’re conditioned by the system that causes us to forsake the One Who give us the job in the first place. We become so busy and tangle up in duties that we eventually begin to see spending time with God too much of a task. We live in a world where work, hobbies, social media, sleep, fitness obsession etc. has replaced the Lord as our first love (Matthew 22:37).

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Here are a few benefits of spending time with God:

* When we spend time with Him, we grow closer to Him. We come to truly know Who He is, and we come to love Him with all our hearts and soul.  Just as we spend time interacting with someone to know them better, we should do the same when it comes to working on our relationship with God (John 3:16).

* One of the best parts in spending time with God is that you experience glorious transformation. When people see you, they’ll know that you’ve been in Jesus’ presence base on your behavioral actions (2 Corinthians 3:18).

* Spending time with our Maker gives us a sense of renewal: spiritually, physically, and emotionally. Consider this time alone with God as a retreat. Pray, sing to Him, study, and rest be it relaxing or sleeping (Isaiah 40:31).

* Keeping Him at the forefront of our mind during the day draws us even closer to Him. Make Him a part of your daily life. That’s why sometimes we feel as if He has forsaken us for we don’t spend time in His precious presence (Revelation 3:20).

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At the moment, I spend time with God by just talking to Him, praying, reading devotionals, studying the Word, and listening to spiritual music. I also tend to seek Him out, no matter the situation.

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Application

Is your love for God the same as it was before?

Is the fire still burning passionately or diminishing?

How can you develop love for someone you know little about and spend little time with?

When was the last time you really took the time to sit and just spend time with God? He values our moments with Him. No matter how busy we get, we should always make time for Him, no excuses, for He doesn’t use the “I’m busy” card when we come to Him.

God just wants us to have a relationship with Him; never become too busy for Him. 

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