BE WISE! LEARN FROM OTHERS

The Bible recommends that you follow those who have obtained what you are striving for. These people are examples whom you respect and have received the testimonies you desire. The Bible says: “Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come” (1 Corinthians 10:11). One major way of being “followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises” (Hebrews 6:12) is through their biographies. These could be a book, or an audio or video recording. 

A biography is the life story of a person written by someone else. As a wife, it is important for you to study the biographies of wives who have excelled and have thus inherited the promises. Biographies provide examples to learn from because the secrets of men are in their stories. You must understand the secret of learning from examples if you want to get to God’s destination for your life. History has a way of always repeating itself, either negatively or positively. There are biblical and contemporary biographies for you to learn from. The Bible is full of stories of those who lost out of their destinies and those who made full proof of it. 

A few of them include – Gehazi, Elisha’s servant and heir apparent to the great unction and anointing upon Elisha’s life and ministry, who unfortunately lost it all to covetousness (2 Kings 5:20-27). Instead of becoming an anointed minister, he ended up as a notable leper. Judas was one of Jesus’ twelve disciples, and like the others, he walked and dined with the Lord, but ended up betraying him due to covetousness (Matthew 26:14-16). He did not only end up becoming a loser on earth, but he will also spend eternity in hell because he did not repent before taking his life. He ended in shame. Delilah, a lady who could have married God’s servant and probably become one of the most referenced wives in the Bible, gave in to covetousness and sexual sin (Judges 16:1-21).  She became an instrument in the hands of the devil and was not spared. She died alongside those that sent her. David, the man after God’s heart, who “with his whole heart he danced for the Lord” (2 Samuel 6:14).  He was a generous giver, who solely provided all that was needed for the building of the temple. His constant enquiry from God caused him to win all his battles. And when he was caught up in sin, he cried out for help and was forgiven (2 Samuel 12:13). He maintained his position in the heart of God, and God established his throne forever (2 Samuel 7:16).

When you study the lives of those who have gone ahead of you, you will be able to learn from them and avoid their pitfalls. In our contemporary world today, there are examples of men and women worth emulating. Find out about successful ministries and the wives behind them, look out for their secrets, follow them and you will become the next success story. You can’t become a story until you acquaint yourself with the stories of others who have obtained a good report. “Those who don’t have references, never become a reference.” This is true! One tree never makes a forest. Every man that is now a reference has had to identify with several references of men at some point. The Bible says, “Hearken to me, ye that follow after righteousness, ye that seek the LORD: look unto the rock whence ye are hewn, and to the hole of the pit whence ye are digged. Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bare you: for I called him alone, and blessed him, and increased him” (Isaiah 51:1-2). As you look unto God, the Rock from whence ye are hewn, you are also to look unto your father Abraham. You are not to look only unto God but also unto the fathers who have gone ahead of you in the race. As you look at their lives, you are able to interpret the scriptures correctly and see further. Wisdom demands that you stand on the shoulders of those who have gone ahead of you, and their stories are invaluable assets in achieving yours. Your place will only be secured by the degree of illumination you carry. Time is precious and irrecoverable. Instructions are the pathways of wisdom. As you study the lives of those who have already inherited the promises, it becomes easy to wisely avoid the mistakes they made and pick instructions from what they did right. 

However, be aware that you must be discreet enough not to take everything you read or hear hook, line and sinker, but rather apply wisdom in knowing what to learn and what to unlearn by avoiding their mistakes. I take delight in reading biographies of ministers and ministers’ wives, especially those who have been in full-time pulpit preaching ministry. For instance, I have read biographies and other books written by great men and women of God such as Pastor (Mrs.) Folu Adeboye and late Pastor (Mrs.) Bimbo Odukoya. Remember, for you to see brighter, you need the shoulders of those who have gone before you. One major way of doing this is by reading their biographies. You can take advantage of this truth.

BALANCE HOME AND CAREER

A close look at Proverbs 31:16-24 tells you that she considers a field and buys it; from her earnings she plants a vineyard. She makes linen garments and sells them, and supplies belts to the tradesmen.

Once upon a time, there was a young couple who were blessed with the birth of their first child. Because they loved this child so much, they wished that the wife could stay home and raise the child; but the bills still needed to be paid. So the wife went out and found the perfect job. She could arrive at work by 10am and leave at 2pm, and she was paid as though she was working full time. She could keep nursing and be home every day in time for his nap. While the baby napped, she was able to cook a delicious meal, wash and iron the clothes, clean the house and still have time to get herself beautiful before her husband came home. After playing with their child together, they would tuck him into bed and then have a wonderful conversation over the excellent candle-lit dinner she had prepared in their clean and well organized home.

So how did you like this story? Well “story” is the accurate word because it is a fairy tale. Real life does not look like this as I think we would all agree. Wouldn’t it be great if everything just checked along as effortless as in the story? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if women today could keep their homes running perfectly, their children growing into hard-working young adults who never argued with their parents, their husbands happy, and were able to bring in an income with hardly extra effort at all? I wish it could be like this, especially for single mothers but the fact is, we can’t do it all or have it all. I have to admit addressing the topic of women working is a challenge. Women are pulled in so many directions in today’s world. The expectations placed on women today far exceeds those from any other time in history.

I knew a woman, my mother’s friend, who when she was raising her first three children didn’t even have a car. Most families had just one car and it was for the husband to use to work. She also did not have the health club commitment or weekly women’s meeting that we have in our lives today. She took care of her family and loved every minute of it. Probably because she didn’t have other things pulling her apart in different directions.

Today, women are bombarded with opportunities and pressures to have careers, to be ‘somebody’. But whenever the world tells me to do something that is when I need to open God’s word and see what it has to say about the roles of women in the workplace and in the home. Titus 2:5 (NIV) says, “to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.” This scripture encourages women to be sensible, pure workers at home, kind, and being subject to their own husbands that the word of God may not be dishonoured. I believe this concept of loving and being dutiful to our families is the way to honour God’s principle that flows through Proverbs 31.

TAKE HEED

Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall” (1 Corinthians 10:12).

This month, I want to task us to take heed about what we do when our children are around us. We are their best teachers and they emulate us unconsciously. Whatever we do as couples affect our children either positively or negatively.

Sometime ago, I held discussions with some children of workers and born-again Christians in and realized that we, Christians are like mirrors to our children. Some of them said their parents only complained about their dressings and how they did not study the Word nor attend programs; but when compared to their parents, they felt they were better. Then I asked, why? They listed things they had observed which made Christianity unappealing to them:

  1. They said Christians, particularly their parents, do not forgive each other. They keep malice and when they are in church, people believe that they are saints, and the little they know about God is that He said we should forgive (Matthew 6:12).
  2. They also observed that their parents did not love each other, yet claimed to be serving God, Who is love (1 John 4:8).
  3. Marital separation means nothing to them, which has made them to decide against living with their spouse when they are grown.
  4. They think Christianity to be a scam where people only do what pleases them and set aside other less pleasing instructions and principles. As a result, they attend to physical things such as how they look and how religious they seem, and are not concerned about developing a good relationship with God. Obeying God’s commandments to the letter are also deemed unnecessary.

Therefore, I have decided to advise us parents to please take heed in what we do and our decisions, so that it will not destroy our children’s lives and their relationships with God. 

Do you know that many children from broken homes (divorced or separated) mostly end up becoming single parents? Some whose parents have in one way or another been abused also take decisions never to tolerate what their parents went through and end up with an unsettled home. This trend has continued for generations and it is time to put an end to it for the sake of future generations. 

Please, for God’s sake, your children see and listen to most of your conversations, so be careful when you talk to your spouse. Let your quarrels end in your bedroom. It must not leak out because of its effect on your children. They are your legacy and future, do not let them refer to some of the negative things you said or did later in the future. How do you want to minister to your children when you have not crucified your flesh? What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul? (Mark 8:36) 

The Bible says if you are bringing an offering to the Lord and you remember that someone is angry with you, leave your gift and first reconcile with him/her before presenting your offering. However, these days we are even bold to attend services without forgiving one another. Where is the spirit of old that made you feel very uncomfortable when you did not fully obey the Word of God? 

For our children’s sake, let us recheck ourselves; whatever we are doing that can make our children to see our religion as hypocritical, please stop it. I pray that we will not loose any of our children to the devil nor will we become reprobates at the end in the Jesus Name.

THE POWER OF GOOD COMMUNICATION

When communication is in place there will be understanding, and where there is understanding, are peace, love, and joy. Communication helps out during the marital ‘teething’ period.

The teething period in marriage is a development stage where the couple finds it a little difficult to relate with one another because of their differences. Communication is one of the keys of agreement in marriage to enjoy all-round family dominion. The husband and wife must always agree because this is the key that unlocks the door to family dominion. While disagreements shut the door. Deuteronomy 32:30 says, “How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their rock had sold them, and Jehovah had delivered them up.” When communication is faulty, the following outcomes are inevitable:

1. SATAN LOOKS FOR LOOPHOLES

2 Corinthians 11:3 – “But I fear, least by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” Every successful home is a threat to Satan’s kingdom, that is why he would do anything to destroy it. Unfortunately, he often gains entrance into many homes through the woman. Women are more susceptible to Satan’s attacks because of their roles in the home. She is usually at home more often than the man. So, she is more available to Satan. He creeps in on her and tells her ‘what makes you different from the man? Are you a slave? Have you forgotten that you are also educated as he is? Have you forgotten your placement in your office?’ If unguarded by the Spirit of God, the woman would be tempted to agree with the devil.

2. IT CREATES BITTERNESS AND TROUBLE

Hebrew 12:15 – “Looking diligently lest any man fall of the grace of God, lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you and thereby many be defiled.” Bitterness starts from very little things. Perhaps, your spouse or a family member did something that hurt you and you have refused to forgive him or her. Watch it, every remembrance of the incident brings pain to you. That is a root of bitterness springing up gradually. If it is not dealt with immediately, it will ultimately trouble you. The term ‘springing up’ connotes a thing that starts small, and then suddenly shoots up.  Once bitterness gains access to your heart and is not immediately wiped, very soon it will magnify itself and dominate you. Another thing about bitterness is that it troubles and embitters individuals. You lose your rest to bitterness. If you’re embittered against your spouse, when he or she is in the sitting room, you will want to be in the bedroom; there is usually no rest within you. Bitterness makes you fall short of God’s grace. This means that when you harbour bitterness, you are frustrating the grace of God in your life. And what are you without grace? 1 Corinthians 15:10 – “But by the grace of God I am what I am.” So, you need His grace to succeed in your family.

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS 2

Welcome to the second month in 2021. This year may have started out with its challenges but in all, glory be to God Almighty. I want to use this time to encourage as many women that are discouraged by what they may be going through in their marriages through this question and answer.

Question: Mummy, what else can I do? I try to impress and satisfy my husband, yet its complaints every time, every day no matter my sacrifice for him and our children. Our marriage is more than 18 years old. Many times, I feel like committing suicide. To people outside, they believe I am enjoying, but nobody can control or correct him. Is God asleep about my case? I have prayed, yet I have not seen changes.

Answer: Firstly, I thank God for your life because He is working out something for you. You may not be aware but I know this. Please do not relent your prayers. I feel your pain. Sincerely, I know it is not easy loving a man who does not appreciate you or your efforts, as Luke 6:45 tells us that, “out of the abundance of the heart, his mouth speaks”, but God in heaven will surely reward you. It is a matter of time. Your mental health matters. Recently, a woman confided in me that 2 years ago, she had attempted suicide, but her husband did not discuss it with his family due to shame. This is still the same issue she complained about. So, please get it right. Start doing whatever makes you happy. Look for ways to ease off the tension, and surround yourself with people who believe in you and make you happy. If you can afford to go for a spa treatment, do so. Make your hair or get a good haircut. Laugh it off and make sure you restrain yourself from adultery because I have found that most women at this stage are vulnerable to marital infidelity. This is because there is always someone out there who will appreciate you in a much better way and manner than your husband. So, be careful.

You said that you have been praying and have also tried to comply with his excesses yet the situation has remained the same. Luke 1:37 says, “with God nothing shall be impossible.” One day, God will touch his heart but don’t kill yourself or lose your mind before then. Thinking about it, you will know that this is a spiritual matter and it is beyond you. Check his family and yours to know if other wives or members of your families are also facing a similar situation. Whatever you discover will help you to know what to pray about. Also, side chicks and strange women cannot be ruled out. A lot of times, when a man is involved in illicit affairs, he will no more be satisfied with his wife. He will complain about everything including food, but when he is outside, he is willing to spend much more on feeding. However, he is not ready to spend to get good food from his wife. At this point, you need extra grace because it is sickening to find out that your efforts are unappreciated despite the sacrifices.

Do not allow anyone’s behaviour to make you either leave God or His presence. Hold on to Christ, the Author and Finisher of your faith, because very soon, if you do not relent, you will laugh last in Jesus Name. Be encouraged.

To brothers out there who are also reading this article, if your wife is unhappy with you because you have been maltreating her in any manner, it is unfortunate because you are only afflicting yourself. And this can bring about delay or completely hinder your prayers from being answered. God is watching you, and you will receive your reward accordingly. If you appreciate other people and their wives, but not your wife, then you may not know the value of what you have until you lose it. Whatever you do not value cannot be a blessing to you. You only know about today, remember, the same woman whom you tag ‘useless’ today will be the one who will stay with you later in life if there are challenges. Be wise!

For the young adults too, I encourage you to be responsible before getting married. Your responsibilities include paying the bills to maintain the house, engaging with your children among a host of others. Do not fall for the lie that your responsibility is only restricted to paying the house rent and children’s school fees. If you are not ready to do these and others, please stay away from marriage.

SPEAK OUT (PART 1)

Many are victims of their present predicaments just because they kept quiet. It is not like there is no help around, but they have refused to call for one. Perhaps, they do not want others to know or feel that without telling anyone, people around them should understand, know and attend to their needs. 

Silence is defined as the absence of sound and you almost cannot successfully pass any message across without making a sort of sound. Even the mute calls your attention by making sounds. This means you cannot successfully communicate in silence; and if there is any message being passed, it may be misunderstood. Therefore, you need to make a sound that can be understood. Born again wives are not left out as they suffer in silence, live unfulfilled lives and are frustrated. Unfortunately, many have resorted to drugs, food, pornography, alcohol and the likes to seek relief from their plights. And after a while something terrible happens – divorce, a police case, adultery, collapse of a ministry and so on. This ought not to be so. No man on earth can read your mind, which is why you have to open up.

Only God is Omniscient (or All-knowing), and with this attribute, He still demands that we open out mouth and speak. “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you” (Matthew 7:7). Why should you die in silence when there is help all around you? Here are reasons why many refuse to call for help:

  1. Pride: You need to understand that the Bible says in Ecclesiastes 1:9(c) “…and there is no new thing under the sun.” Whatever your calling is, somebody somewhere has done something like it before and someone may be doing something similar now. These people have confronted and slain the giants you are dealing with. Thus, it is wisdom to connect and learn from them. Calling for help when you need it is not a sign of weakness. Do not give room to pride by refusing to seek godly counsel. Also, you must be careful to know who you are asking for help. Some people will discuss your situation with friends and make jest of you, while others need help themselves and have not been given the grace to counsel. Pray to know the best person to discuss your case with because the wrong advice has led many into destruction and regret. Godly advice will always give you peace and conform to biblical standard. For instance, any counsel that will lead to separation when the man is not violent is wrong, run from it. If your spouse is doing the wrong thing, you do what is right and one day, it will speak for you. God can do all things, it is only a matter of time. 

I pray that 2021 will be better than last year in Jesus Name. 

Happy New Year.

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS 3

These are questions asked by several women and my responses to them. I hope you will learn from their experiences. 

QUESTION: I am a born-again sister married to a born-again brother in RCCG. We are both workers in the church but I realize that my husband does not have an atom of love for me. His attitude and the sort of words that come out of his mouth have made me realize that I made the biggest mistake of my life in marrying him. He is neither caring nor loving and is very selfish. He does not willingly buy things for me. What can I do? We are just patching this marriage.

ANSWER: Glory be to God that you are still together, my sister. There are some people whose cases are not even as bad, yet they are no more together. This shows that God loves you both. As you said, you are both workers in the church, so even if you believe that your marriage is a mistake, God is a God of change. There is nothing too difficult for Him to do. Some men think that they are allowed to say anything when they are angry to prove their point. But when you surrender your life to Christ, your body and character remain intact, and gradually God has a way of changing you. In my counselling sessions, I tell women to develop shock absorbers due to the things that come from their spouses. You do not have to reply to all the nagging, abuses, negative words and curses because they would only bring more bad words. And you keeping quiet does not mean that you are a fool, you are only obeying the Word of God. With regards to not buying things for you, PLEASE find something to do (which will earn you some money); and if you are working, buy for yourself those things you need to make yourself happy. I am not supporting the bad behaviour but whatever you do not have the power to change leave it for God to handle. And pray. My sister, I feel your pain, I know what you are talking about. It is not an easy process but you do not have a choice. As a child of God, the moment you are married it is settled for life. Make sure this does not take you away from God. Don’t lose your focus as a child of God. Read the Bible, surround yourself with people who will encourage and not discourage you. It is a matter of time, you are sowing your prayers, you will soon reap the harvests.

And for men who will read this reply, let us watch our words. Some men are going through some challenges in life because of the way they treat their wives. The Bible says you are to treat your wife right so that your prayers will be answered by God (1 Peter 3:7). God knows why He said so, I am sure God foresaw that some men will be wicked to their wives and selfish. If you have been praying to God for favour or help, genuinely start treating your wife well, unconditionally and watch if God too will not have mercy on you. 

To our single sisters, please do not be carried away by your emotions, kindly marry someone that you are sure has feelings for you and not the person that you love and does not love you back. Even if you do not really love the man, by the time he showers you with affections, that love will develop in you. But love does not develop in men’s hearts, no matter how you try to impress them. Please do not do what you will regret later, it is not easy to live with someone who sees you as a sex toy to satisfy his selfish needs, baby mama and senior nanny for the rest of your life. The first thing someone in love with you will always do is to make sure you are not under any stress; your mental, physical and emotional health will be their top priority. Whereas those that are not genuinely in love with you will add to your stress, and when you complain they get angry. They don’t care if you die because it gives them the opportunity to marry the woman they love. Be wise, choose right, a word is enough for the wise. 

Stay blessed.

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

BECOMING THE TOTAL WOMAN