By Femi Aribisala
A few months ago, God gave us a word of prophecy in Healing Wings. He said: “A storm is coming.” The obvious question was: “Why did He give us this word? What were we supposed to do?” Just as he predicted, the storm came in the form of the EndSARS protests that engulfed Nigeria and led to killings, riots, and looting.
In the scriptures, Jesus was with His disciples when a storm struck, but He was asleep in the stern of the boat. His disciples quickly ran to Him. They woke Him up with a foolish prayer: “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” Jesus rebuked them. He asked: “Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?” (Mark 4:35-41).
How can they perish on the sea when the Saviour is in their boat?
Inevitably, in some situations our prayers must make God angry. Some prayers, like those of the disciples in this case, show lack of faith. Instead of praying, what should the disciples have done? They should have dealt with the storm themselves. They had the power to deal with the storm.
Author of our faith
Confronted with the storm, Jesus did two things. He rebuked the wind. Then He admonished the wind. He spoke His peace to the sea: “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was an immediate calm on the sea. The disciples then asked: “Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!”
Jesus is the manner of man we are supposed to be. Instead of praying to Jesus, the disciples should have rebuked the wind and spoken peace to the sea. The promise of God to the believer says: “You will also declare a thing, and it will be established for you.” (Job 22:28). However, the disciples could not declare a thing because they had no faith.
Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God. So, what have you heard? James says: “Elijah was a man with a nature like ours.” (James 5:17). What can we learn from Elijah? Elijah declared to Ahab: “As the Lord God of Israel lives, before whom I stand, there shall not be dew nor rain these years, except at my word.” (1 Kings 17:1).
And there was no rain, according to the word of Elijah.
You are now a son of God through faith in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:26). You are blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. (Ephesians 1:3). You are an heir of God and joint heirs with Christ. (Romans 8:17). You are an ambassador for Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:20).
When I was working as Special Adviser to the Minister of External Affairs of Nigeria, we went on a trip to Jamaica. The Nigerian Ambassador to Jamaica was not a career diplomat. He was a professor from the University of Lagos. He complained that he had been writing to Lagos for permission to change his car and to change the furniture in his official residence but to no avail.
One of the foreign service officers who came with us laughed at him. He told him it was obvious that, before he arrived at the post, one of the career officers in Jamaica had taken over his car. Others must have poached the furniture in his residence. Under the circumstances, nobody in Lagos is going to answer you. All they must be doing is laughing at you.
Then he hit the nail on the head: “Mr. Ambassador, he said, “you are the Ambassador. You control the funds. If you need a car, buy the car. If you need furniture, buy the furniture. It is up to you. You don’t need anybody’s permission to do what is within your right.”
The problem was that the ambassador did not know he was the ambassador. Or he did not know what it means to be a Nigerian ambassador.
The new you
Similarly, many disciples of Jesus are unaware of the prerogatives of their discipleship. Many new creations in Christ Jesus don’t know what it means to be a new creation.
If you are a new creation, “old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” (2 Corinthians 5:17). You are now a citizen of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. (Philippians 3:20). You are seated in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus. (Ephesians 2:6). It is no longer you who lives, but Christ lives in you. (Galatians 2:20).
You are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works. (Ephesians 2:10). You can do all things through Christ who strengthens you. (Philippians 4:13). It is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. ((Philippians 2:13). Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God. (1 Corinthians 6:19). You have the mind of Christ. (1 Corinthians 2:16).
You are the salt of the earth, and the light of the world. (Matthew 5:13-14). God supplies all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:19). The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made you free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:2).
Neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate you from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 8:38-39).
Power with God
As a new creation, do not operate in the false humility of Gideon who, when the angel called him a mighty man of valour, he contradicted him by insisting that: “My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my father’s house.” (Judges 6:15). You are who God makes you to be. You are more than conqueror through Him who loved you. (Romans 8:37).
Jesus says: “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.” (Acts 1:8). Well, if you are born again, then you have received power. That means you now have power with God. (Genesis 32:28). It also means you are in God and God is in you. (John 14:10; 17:21). That means you have received the power to speak to mountains and storms. When you speak, every mountain and hill will be brought low. (Isaiah 40:4). When you speak, the mountains will skip like rams, the little hills like lambs. (Psalm 114:4).
That is the promise of God. Jesus says: “Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore, I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” (Mark 11:22-24).
This means stop bothering God about your problems. Speak to your problems. Say to them: “Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain!” (Zechariah 4:7).