By Funmi Komolafe

These are trying times for many people in our country.    Families are struggling to meet financial obligations,    jobs remain scare,    retrenchment    is the order of the day in otherwise viable companies, and several other people have other challenges.

All of these challenges, including waiting on the Lord for children or    marriage    partner, etc.,  are obstacles to a Joyful home.

Though this column focuses on the spiritual, we also know that      the spiritual    and the physical are connected.

Are you in doubt? Let’s have a check on Matthew 18 verse 18: “Verily,    I say unto you,  whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven”.

This leaves no one in doubt about the connection between the physical and the Spiritual.

Have you fixed a date for      a wedding    and you are worried    about how to finance it?  Commit it not only to the Lord who is the great provider but also take steps to limit your expenses.  There is no need to put the man under any form of financial pressure just to impress others.

Effective prayer

Let’s    focus on prayer for a while..

Prayer we all know is one of the ways of communicating with the Lord.    While praying, we are      always quick to      present our requests without    expressing due gratitude to God for what he has done in our lives.    Often times, we      forget that being alive is a miracle and this is because we take it for granted.

What one is saying is, how do we pray?    For prayer to be effective,    one needs to keep off all forms of distractions.      We must pray whole-heartedly and communicate with God just like when we discuss with a confidant.

While praying, the word of God should be handy.    It is not all about just holding the  Bible but using the right Bible passage to support our request.

That way, we remind      God of his covenant with you.      We also need    to      faithfully make prophetic declarations of the word of God into our lives.

It    is also important that we    ask God to remember us.    Why? This is    because millions of people seek the face of our Father in Heaven.

We also need to    see every challenge as a burden and be determined to be freed from it.

A man of God once said “ to experience total victory and freedom, we must pray until something happens”.

In other words, we must not be fed up with prayer.    One of the reasons we should not be fed up with prayer is      the assurance of the Lord the He will answer us.

According to the book of Isaiah 41 vs. 10: “ Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed ; for I am thy God : and I will help thee ; yea , I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness”.

We must refuse to be held down by any affliction.

Freedom from affliction is    given to us by our Lord Jesus.

Galatians 5 vs. 1 is our authority .    It states : “    Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith    Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage”.

So , we are assured that our God has the capability to free us from    any form of bondage

From prayer to praise

Have you been praying and nothing has happened?      It is time to change strategy.    In this month of perfection, July, we need to do something different to receive something spectacular.

Have you heard that you should keep praising God    whatever may be the challenge ?    I  imagine someone saying, ‘how and why should I be praising God when I    have become a  laughing stock because of a particular challenge?’.

Permit me to share this      inspiring testimony given by a lady who led a praise worship    at Harken Unto Me O Lord programme held at RCCG, Magodo.

She observed that people were not responding to      praise worship as they should. Then she went on to give her testimony .

Lady B, as I have chosen to call her, said she    was married    without  child for eight years.      In the course of      seeking solution to her      condition, she visited medical doctors one of whom told her that her two tubes were blocked.

Hence she had no chance    of getting pregnant and therefore she should not expect    any child.    However, she wanted      to have biological children; so she continued to pray.      For eight years, nothing happened.

Then at the end of the eighth-year, she decided    to shift her spiritual focus from prayer to  praise.

In her words, she stopped praying and began to      praise the Lord.

She said    in the ninth year of her marriage, she got pregnant for the first time in her marriage.      No doubt her pregnancy came as a surprise to her doctors.

She didn’t go through surgery    to open    up the blocked fallopian tubes, yet    our God, with whom nothing is impossible, did it for her.

In the 10th  year of her marriage, she gave birth to a baby boy.      To the glory of God,          this year, 2016, the boy marked his fifth birthday.

Isn’t our God awesome?

Between praise and thanksgiving

Praising God isn’t something that one does for the fun of it.    It must be done wholeheartedly.

We must also know that there is a difference between praising God and thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving, according to Pastor Bisi Olowoyo of RCCG, is usually      to appreciate God for what He has done for us.

On the other hand, praise worship is    for our expectation and to acknowledge the awesome power of God .

When we wholeheartedly praise    God,      we, sometimes, begin to shed tears of joy.    In other cases, one may begin to dance even when no one is beating a drum or playing any musical instrument.

Praise worship lifts up our faith and raises our expectation.

It can also be regarded as a short cut to reach our God as the Holy Spirit moves swiftly into action.

Men of God say that when praise goes up, blessings come down.

Praise worship makes God to move swiftly, it moves us from the natural to the supernatural.

A man of God told the story of himself and his wife.    They had been married for    some years without children.    They had prayed but nothing happened.    They decided to pray for an hour every day.      Their chosen time was 11 pm to 12 am .

This they did wherever they were.    According to him, “ even    when I was on a trip, I made sure I    honoured the Lord at that hour    while my wife at home did the same”.

It didn’t take long before they broke through and God gave them a child.

The Psalmist wrote in Psalm 76 verses 3-7: “Let the people praise thee, O God ; let all the people praise thee.    O let the nations be glad    and sing for joy; for thou shall judge    the people righteously , and govern    the nations upon earth, Selah. Let the people praise thee, O God, let all the people praise thee.”

When we praise, verses 6    and 7 tells us what follows: “Then shall the earth yield her increase, and God, even our own God , shall bless us.    God shall bless us; and all the ends of the earth shall fear Him”.

One person who was very good at praising God was King David.

Psalm    34 vs 1 states, “    I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth”.

Psalm 107 vs 21: “Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!”

Prepare yourself to testify to His wonderful works by praising him.

Take praise worship, as seriously as you take prayer and your miracle will come faster than you can ever imagine.

Praise God, get your miracle and let’s share it with others.

 

Have a blessed week.

 

Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.