The Free Gift In Hebrews

Now the king was attracted to Esther more than to any of the women, and she won his favour and approval more than any of the other virgins. So he set a royal crown on her head and made her queen instead of Vashti. Esther 2:17

Without Grace, Life would have been on analogue mode instead of digital. There would have been no basis for Christianity because it wouldn’t have been different from other religions. This Grace comes with the salvation brought to us through the death of Christ on the cross. The salvation through Christ offers us privileges before we ever think of working for any. This is exactly the coverage of the book of Hebrews. The good news of Grace! I’ve realized that not all free things are free. Whenever some freebies get to you, know that someone may have paid for it.

Some people have become spiritually irresponsible because they think that Christ has done it all so there is no other price to pay. This is wrong since Grace does not stop you from being responsible for the things that pertain to your competence and character. The grave you have requires that you work out your salvation with fear and trembling. This Grace allows you labour in your area of competence and portrays you very efficient and well- priced. Therefore, live your life with this consciousness and be an example. Let your light so shine. Enjoy Grace this new month.

Christ has paid the capital charges of salvation. Pay the service charge of living a life that points people back to him.

Source: Daily Discoveries

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Ways You Need To Revolve To God When You’re Far From Him

Sometimes God gives us hardships so we can turn to him and get closer to him; sometimes he just wants to remind us that life is fleeting but he is eternal and that is why we should always go back to him.

I remembered when I was wandering in the wilderness, it was not a funny experience. I disciplined myself to fast, pray and read inspirational books. I learnt that I am nothing without God, I can’t do anything without Him. Putting God in everything I do as turned things around in my life. Both the ones have seen and experienced, and the ones am still expectant of.

Beneath are some ways to revolve back to Him..

1. When you’re heartbroken. Ask him to heal you, ask him to help you repair yourself again, ask him to give the strength to move on, the wisdom to understand, the grace to forgive and the courage to try again. Because he’s the only who knows your heart and he is the only one who knows how to mend it.

2. When you’re confused about life. Ask him to guide you, ask him to help you find the way, ask him for a map, ask him to lead you because he is the only one who can, because he is the only one who really knows where you’re going and he is the only one who has the fuel to keep you moving.

3. When you don’t feel like you’re good enough. Ask him why you’re still here, ask him if you’re special, and ask him for reassurance, confidence and faith . Ask him because he wants to let you know how special you are, ask him because he knows your day is coming soon and ask him because he will bring it to you sooner than you think.

4. When you’re lonely. Talk to him, tell him your problems, cry to him, tell him to stay by your side, tell him you need him and tell him to tuck you in bed and help you sleep. Talk to him even if you’re not saying a word because he is listening to your silence and he is watching your tears and he will make you smile again.

5. When you’re scared. Tell him to give you courage, tell him to take the fear away, tell him to silence the voices in your head, tell him that you’re afraid but you’re willing to take the risk and ask him for strength to handle the consequences. Tell him to make you fearless because he knows you have it in you and he knows how to bring it out.

6. When you’re tired of failing. Ask him to give you peace of mind, ask him to give you the faith you need to trust him and trust that this is all for a reason, that he is putting you through this for a bigger and better purpose and that he is not going to let you down. Ask him for patience to wait for the answers.

7. When you’re not sure if he’s listening. Ask him to remember you, ask him to give you reassurance, ask him for a sign and ask him for a miracle, because he wants you to believe in miracles and he wants you to witness them.

8. When you’re giving up. Ask him to give you hope, ask him to let you see the light at the end of the tunnel, ask him for the silver lining and ask him to give you power to keep fighting your battles until you win the war. Because he wants to see you win and he wants you to be victorious.

9. When you’ve lost someone you loved. Get closer to him, it’s okay to question why this happened to you but ask him to be your friend, ask him to be there for you, ask him for the reason he took something you loved away and then trust him; trust his plan and trust his timing, trust that he will replace what you’ve lost with something even bigger and better and something that never even crossed your mind.

10. When people are making fun of your dreams. Tell him that you think this is your calling, that this is your passion, and that this is what makes you feel alive. Ask him to make it happen, to make it easier, to make it less cruel and ask him to cover your ears from all those who are laughing at you, because he wants to make your dreams come true but he wants to make sure that you’re up for the challenge and that you will fight for them.

A Sinner Like Me

Pushing this flesh into alignment,
guided by The Word most holy and pure,
I’m striving to learn principles
for a sanctified life to endure.

My Lord loves me without hesitation
and allowed a part of Himself to die.
He’s calling me homeward without reservation;
by His Spirit, to His side, I’ll eventually fly.photo-1445964047600-cdbdb873673d

Knowing I’m a child of His,
during trying times I find true encouragement.
I’m able to lean on His strength
while in search of heavenly ascent.

Stumbling forward with pained progress,
I’ve chosen to turn myself towards Thee.
On Your path, lit by spiritual Light, I’m hoping…
That You will still forgive… a sinner like me.

Waiting On God

I am reminded today of the importance of maintaining an attitude of waiting on God. I am not suggesting inactivity but rather the highest form of spiritual activity, that of trusting God in every area of life. Wait on Him for strength, healing, wisdom, and opportunity. Wait on God to reveal Himself to you and to show you His amazing favor. God is waiting to be good to us, and He looks for those who are waiting on Him (Isaiah 30:18).

Father God, I desire to form a habit of waiting on You all throughout the day. Help me not to rush ahead into activities and decisions without acknowledging You. Thank You for Your presence. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Destiny Helpers: God’s Grace To Fallen Sinners

Have you given up on hope? Have you seen your past as the cause of your challenges? Do you ever feel nothing good will happen to you because of the sins of your father? Well the answer is that you don’t give up on God, because He won’t give up on you.

During my morning devotion, the book of 2 Samuel vs 9 gave me an insight of compassion, grace, and favour.

And David said, “Is there still anyone left of the house (family) of Saul to whom I may show kindness for Jonathan’s sake?”” — 2Sam 9:1

What made David mention this? Am sure at that time he was filled with joy and happiness to remember his late friend Jonathan’s household. Inspite of Saul’s attitude towards David, he still have that spirit of forgiveness and blessing the house of Saul.

I remember when I was lost in the dark. I applied for jobs but no employment for good one year. It was really disappointing. But I never stopped believing in God. My prayer at that time was God let my destiny helpers locate me. People that promise me job, God put it in their hearts to never sleep until they have fulfilled your promise to me. I prayed this prayer virtually everyday. March 2016, I got a call to travel to another state to collect my employment letter. This came from someone that promised me job for almost four years back, and God did His work by remembering me.

The word “kindness” (9:1, 3, 7) is the key to this chapter. It is the Hebrew word chesed , often translated “lovingkindness.”

Same thing happened with the son of Jonathan. He was crippled and am sure never believed something good will never happen to him. He never expected King David to summon him and make him one of the kings son.

You will notice that David said, “Is there not yet anyone?” Not, “anyone qualified”; not, “anyone worthy?”; just, “anyone?” When Ziba informed David, perhaps with a twinge of warning in his voice, “(he) is crippled in both feet,” David didn’t ask, “How badly is he crippled?” David didn’t think, “He would be useless to have around here.” Instead, he asked, “Where is he?” and he sent for him. Grace doesn’t depend on the recipient. Grace is God’s unmerited favor.

Grace seeks us where we’re at, brings us to the King’s presence, and keeps us for the King’s return

“David said to him, “Do not be afraid, for I will certainly show you kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan, and will restore to you all the land of your grandfather Saul; and you shall always eat at my table.”” — 2Sam 9:7

What an inspiring story. I don’t know what you going through now. Is it that dream job, that business, that one thing you feel might not cone to pass. Don’t fret, don’t worry, God has located your destiny helpers today.

Just like King David blessed Mephibosheth, that surprise person will also bless you with your heart desires in Jesus name.

So Mephibosheth lived in Jerusalem, for he always ate at the king’s table. And he was lame in both feet.” — 2Sam 9:13

God’s blessings is for everyone…

Happy Birthday To Me

I don’t know how to start thanking God for my life. For saving me, blessing me, favouring me, and so many things to thank Him for.

Since I was born 1986 this day, I have never seen the Lord changeth. Haven’t seen at all.

He is God all by Himself!!!

I want to appreciate my parents for not giving up on me when I was lost and down, with their wisdom and encouragement I am what I am now. My siblings, forever supporting, my fiancé thanks for the love and 🍰🍰🍰,and to my friends and well wishers, you guys are the 💣💣💣💣💣.

On my grind today, can’t stop dancing and jumping.. I made it

Pregnancy Before Marriage: Linda Ikeji

Usually I don’t write on this topic, but it caught my eye after reading an information online.

Daily Post

This is a trending topic in my environment recently. Since last year, a lot of my friends got pregnant before getting married. I was lost in thought thinking about what the Bible says about fornication. But again society got a role to play in this.

The Joy of pregnancy makes a woman enlightened. Her whole perspective about life changes for good. In some cases it’s not all rosy, some leads to abortion and so many other stuffs. But having a baby with a man that still wanna be in your life is a great feeling for both parties.

Anyways back to my discussion…

So my friends are getting married after giving birth to their first child. I know in some parts of the world it’s not a big deal for ladies to get pregnant outside marriage. But in Africa “Nigeria” it’s a konk isuue.”Please you can quote me wrong”. Like I said before it depends on the circumstances of the pregnancy if the woman wants it, the man wants it and they plan to get married. If not it won’t be good news any longer, instead a burden.

The hottest trend right now is that Linda Ikeji is pregnant.. Yipppi!!! Yea am happy for her. Linda is the top blogger in Nigeria, a role model, and humanitarian. The first blogger in Nigeria, formerly single, recently engaged, now pregnant. I must say, she got it all.

A lot of questions have been buzzing about peeps criticizing her. But what will people won’t say or do. She’s 36, she always wanna be a mum and God bless her with one. Even outside wedlock, she’s gratetful.

What am trying to say is that God’s grace is so sufficient and truly His time is the best. A lot of women are married without kids, a lot got pregnant and abandoned, a lot because of shame went for abortion, while some experience miscarriage. What can we say about this God??? He works in mysterious ways.

Am not implying or advising to get pregnant before marriage, it’s a decision if you feel you can handle it.

Congratulations Linda Ikeji..

Don’t Hope, Decide!!!

While waiting to pick up a friend at the airport in Abuja, I had one of those life-changing experiences that you hear other people talk about — the kind that sneaks up on you unexpectedly. This one occurred a mere two feet away from me.

Straining to locate my friend among the passengers deplaning through the jet way, I noticed a man coming toward me carrying two light bags. He stopped right next to me to greet his family.

First he motioned to his youngest son (maybe six years old) as he laid down his bags. They gave each other a long, loving hug. As they separated enough to look in each other’s face, I heard the father say, “It’s so good to see you, son. I missed you so much!” His son smiled somewhat shyly, averted his eyes and replied softly, “Me, too, Dad!”

Then the man stood up, gazed in the eyes of his oldest son (maybe nine or ten) and while cupping his son’s face in his hands said, “You’re already quite the young man. I love you very much, Zach!” They too hugged a most loving, tender hug.

While this was happening, a baby girl (perhaps one or one-and-a-half) was squirming excitedly in her mother’s arms, never once taking her little eyes off the wonderful sight of her returning father. The man said, “Hi, baby girl!” as he gently took the child from her mother. He quickly kissed her face all over and then held her close to his chest while rocking her from side to side. The little girl instantly relaxed and simply laid her head on his shoulder, motionless in pure contentment.

After several moments, he handed his daughter to his oldest son and declared, “I’ve saved the best for last!” and proceeded to give his wife the longest, most passionate kiss I ever remember seeing. He gazed into her eyes for several seconds and then silently mouthed. “I love you so much!” They stared at each other’s eyes, beaming big smiles at one another, while holding both hands.

For an instant they reminded me of newlyweds, but I knew by the age of their kids that they couldn’t possibly be. I puzzled about it for a moment then realized how totally engrossed I was in the wonderful display of unconditional love not more than an arm’s length away from me. I suddenly felt uncomfortable, as if I was invading something sacred, but was amazed to hear my own voice nervously ask, “Wow! How long have you two been married?

“Been together fourteen years total, married twelve of those.” he replied, without breaking his gaze from his lovely wife’s face. “Well then, how long have you been away?” I asked. The man finally turned and looked at me, still beaming his joyous smile. “Two whole days!”

Two days? I was stunned. By the intensity of the greeting, I had assumed he’d been gone for at least several weeks – if not months. I know my expression betrayed me.

I said almost offhandedly, hoping to end my intrusion with some semblance of grace (and to get back to searching for my friend), “I hope my marriage is still that passionate after twelve years!”

The man suddenly stopped smiling.

He looked me straight in the eye, and with forcefulness that burned right into my soul, he told me something that left me a different person. He told me, “Don’t hope, friend… decide!” Then he flashed me his wonderful smile again, shook my hand and said, “God bless!”

God With Us

The man whispered, “God, speak to me”
And a meadowlark sang.
But, the man did not hear.

So the man yelled, “God, speak to me”
And the thunder rolled across the sky.

But, the man did not listen. The man looked around and said,
“God let me see you.”
And a star shined brightly.
But the man did not see.

And, the man shouted, “God show me a miracle.”
And, a life was born.
But, the man did not notice.

So, the man cried out in despair, “Touch me God, and let me know you are here.”
Whereupon, God reached down and touched the man.
But, the man brushed the butterfly away and walked on.

I found this to be a great reminder that God is always around us in the little and simple things that we take for granted even in our electronic age, so I would like to add one more:

The man cried, “God, I need your help!”
And an e-mail arrived reaching out with good news and encouragement.
But, the man deleted it and continued crying…

Don’t miss out on a blessing because it isn’t packaged the way that you expect.

Things Change #inspiration #motivation

For most people, graduation is an exciting day – the culmination of years of hard work. My graduation

day was a day to remember.

I remember that weekend 8 years ago. Family and friends had flown in from across the country to watch me walk across that stage. But like everyone else in my graduating class, I had watched the economy turn from bad to worse my senior year. After the university, I went on a compulsory full National Youth Service Corp for a year, which was mandatory for all graduates in my country. We worked and got paid by the government and where we worked. After a year, we are done with the programme. We graduates had degrees, but very limited prospects. Numerous applications had not panned out and I knew that the next day, I will start to carter for myself.
The weeks ahead weren’t easy. I gathered up everything I couldn’t carry and put it into storage. Then, because I knew where I was coming from, they couldn’t offer me any opportunities, I packed up and went back to Lagos to find work. But what I thought would take a week dragged into two, and then four, and 100 job applications later, I found myself in the exact same spot as I was before.
You know that feeling when you wake up and you are just consumed with dread? Dread about something you can’t control – that sense of impending failure that lingers over you as you hope that everything that happened to you thus far was just a bad dream? That feeling became constant in my life.
Days felt like weeks, weeks like months, and those many months felt like an unending eternity of destitution. And the most frustrating part was no matter how much I tried, I just couldn’t seem to make any progress.
So what did I do to maintain my sanity? I wrote. Something about putting words on a page made everything seem a little clearer – a little brighter. Something about writing gave me hope. And if you want something badly enough… sometimes a little hope is all you need!
I channeled my frustration into creating an entertaining blog. Where I vent in current entertainment news and some personal write up. I got used to blogging and started making some small change and recognition. Never did I refuse to give up.
And then one day, without any sort of writing degree or contacts in the writing world – just a lot of hard work and perseverance – I was offered a job with a media house to be a writer/ Public Relations Officer to some of the biggest artists in my country. After that, things slowly began to fall into place. Then, a few months later, I got an interview with a telecommunications company to be the Admin Officer of the company. Now I found my part in writing and spreading the good news around for people who are depressed or unmitigated to move on in life. I stopped the entertainment blog and created this wonderful blog “Motivated And Free”. To help people, and also draw them close to Christ.
The moral of this story is… don’t give up. Even if things look bleak now, don’t give up. Several years back, it was a different story for me. But I thank God for His grace and mercy with continuous favour in my daily activities.
If you work hard, give it time, and don’t give up, things will always get better. Oftentimes our dreams lie in wait just a little further upstream… all we need is the courage to push beyond the river.

I will appreciate if this is shared to your loved ones, family, and enemies. Let us kick depression out of the way.

Saved From Lust And Sex #testimony #truthsaves #Jesusdidit

How I Became a Christian

When I was 21 years old, I began to have a desire to get closer to God. Having grown up in the Catholic Church, I figured that getting back to weekly mass was the best place to start. I was dating a girl at the time, and we were involved sexually. I knew this was against the will of God, and I wanted to stop, but it’s pretty hard to quit. One night I told my girlfriend that I didn’t want to have sex anymore. After that, our relationship lasted about a week.

I felt good about my decision, but I knew I still needed to ask God to forgive me for having sex outside of marriage. I decided to go to confession. I told the priest what I’d done. He asked if I used protection when I had sex. I asked him if he meant a condom. He said yeah. I said yes. He said that it was O.K., as long as I use a condom.
I walked out of that church a happy man. I resumed my sexual activities. A few months later, however, the guilt returned. I knew it was wrong, condom or not. I stopped having sex, and decided that I would try not to have sex until I got married.

A friend of mine invited me to Horizon Christian Fellowship in San Diego. Having never studied nor read the Bible (or been encouraged to by the Catholic church), I enjoyed the sermons very much. I heard the gospel and understood it, and believed it, but I wasn’t ready to repent (change my ways). I thought I was cool with God, since I wasn’t having sex anymore. Then I heard the Sermon on the Mount from Matthew chapter 5-7. Jesus said that if you lust after or fantasize about women, it’s just as bad as committing adultery, as far as God’s concerned. I’d stopped having sex, but I hadn’t stopped lusting after girls, or fantasizing. I figured that if I set my mind to it, I could probably (maybe & hopefully) hold out from having sex until I got married. This was a possibility. But I knew that there was no possible way on this planet that I was going to stop fantasizing, or looking at and lusting after beautiful women. No way.

I continued going to the Bible study, and learned about the power of the Holy Spirit. The Bible says that God can give you power to resist temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13 – No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man, but God is faithful, and will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will allow you a way out, that you may endure it). I figure that made sense. If God is all powerful, and if He can do anything, then yeah, He can keep me from lusting after women.

So, after about two months of Bible study, I prayed to Jesus and asked Him to forgive me of my sins. I asked the Holy Spirit to come into my life, and give me the power to live the way God wants me to. This happened at a service at Horizon Christian Fellowship, at a Miles McPherson service on a Wednesday night.
The very next night, I got a call from a girlfriend that I hadn’t seen in months. She wanted to take me out. She had never offered to take me out before this night. The only time we ever spent together was when I went to her house in the middle of the night, maybe once every couple months. Now, she wants to drive over and pick me up, and take me to her “special place”, some mystery location that she wouldn’t reveal. I remembered something about being tempted after you get saved. I thought I probably shouldn’t go out with her. But dumb as I was, I told her to come get me.

She arrived at my house at around 10:00 PM. I asked her to stop by the post office before we went to her “special place”. The Sports Arena post office is open late into the night. As I was leaving the post office, I noticed something on one of the counters. The place is usually cleaned by that time, this object caught my eye. I picked it up. It was a Bible. A little red Bible booklet with Old English type. I immediately remembered something about God always being with you, and helping you resist temptation. I put it in my pocket. I got back in the car, and headed for the “special place”.

I grew up in San Diego. I’d ridden my bike and driven my car all over San Diego. This “special place” is visible from the I-5 freeway (a road I’d been on many times), yet I had never seen it. I’d heard about this “special place”, but had never been there until this night. The “special place” turned out to be the Mount Soledad War Memorial – A thirty foot tall CROSS. Yeah, a cross. So now I’m standing there looking at this cross, with a Bible in my pocket. I was so happy. I felt like God was saying, “You’re my boy now.” All I could think of was how awesome God is. All I talked about was God, and the cross, and, “Ya know when I was little, I went to Sunday school, blah blah blah…..” Of course my date was frustrated, so we left. When we got in the car and turned on the radio, there was a PREACHER on!!!!!
It was a commercial or newscast or something. I was laughing at this point. God rules! We ended up at her house. Now, for the past few years, I hadn’t set foot in this girl’s house without ending up in bed. But tonight was different. Sex was the furthest thing from my mind. We sat in the kitchen. She gave me a hot chocolate. After about ten minutes of nothing, she asked if I wanted her to take me home. I said yes. And that was the end of that. That used to be the end of this story, but a few years after this happened, she called me out of the blue, and I invited her to a Harvest Crusade (outdoor evangelism meeting, similar to a Billy Graham service). She ended up getting saved, and she’s been walking with the Lord ever since, PRAISE GOD!!!!!!!!

God totally delivered me from sexual sin AND from fantasizing & lusting after women. When the desire to lust comes, when that initial thought comes, I’m able to stop it immediately, by the grace of God. I got saved at age 21. Six years later, I married my best friend. Having kept myself pure for so long, I was able to come into a marriage relationship without the excess baggage that comes with being in one sexual relationship after another. I praise Jesus for setting me free!!!! God can do anything, he can change your life, no matter what you’ve done. JESUS CHRIST IS LORD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Testimony: Praise To The Glory Of God’s Grace

​This is the story of my salvation, of how God called me out of darkness into His glorious light, that I might proclaim His praises. Many miraculous things have happened to me since becoming a Christian, but this story focuses on the events surrounding my salvation.

As a little girl my mother would tuck my sister and I in at night and pray the Lord’s prayer with us every night. My family was not really religious and we probably attended church less than ten times as a family throughout my whole childhood while growing up. Though I remember desiring to go to Sunday school, but never went as we did not attend church either. My mother attended church briefly in my very early childhood and took me with her, and my gran told me about the power of the blood of Jesus. Most of my religious exposure came from school – schools in South Africa in those days had special times for bible classes as well as time for prayer in the mornings and assemblies.

Growing up I always believed in God as well as in Jesus and often prayed – mostly before an examination, but I also remember always saying sorry to God when I knew I had sinned. I always called on Jesus name when in danger. I was hit by a car when I was ten years old, I cried out to Jesus that I did not want to die. As a rebellious teenager I had frightening dreams and would always call on Jesus name to ease my fear.

My family was quite close-knit and ‘normal’. My dad worked a 9-5 job and for the most part my mother was a house wife and was always at home for us children. My parents were stable and are still married today, despite problems they faced as a married couple. I was the middle child of three children. I had an older brother six years my senior and a sister four years younger than me. I had no problems at school and achieved in academics and sports. I was a generally respectful and obedient child and gave my parents very little grief. My childhood was happy though not without hiccups. When I look back, I see God’s hand so clearly in all my affairs, such as a time when I was knocked over by a car and a nurse was on the scene with pain pills and a leg splint for my broken leg, or when my brother rescued me from the swimming pool after falling in as a young 4 year old. I also remember being at one church service when I was about six years old and some people were getting baptized – I remember thinking that I too would like to be baptized, though I did not understand the meaning of it.

Everything began to change when I reached high school. I read a book based on a true story about a young girl who wrote in her diary. She described her experiences with drugs in detail. Instantly I became intrigued and obsessed with the idea of taking drugs. I also read a book about how Satanism was seducing the youth. I started dabbling a little with witchcraft and eventually became a regular drug user. I used Marijuana, LSD, Ecstasy, Cocaine and anything else that was on the market. I sold my possessions and lied to my parents to buy drugs.  During this time my father was transferred to a small town on the west coast of South Africa called Langebaan, as he was a civil engineer and did the work of a contract manager. I was becoming very rebellious and demanded that I be sent to the boarding school in my home town, Port Elizabeth. My parents agreed and I was sent to a prestigious all girls school. I had in the previous year won the junior victrix ladorum for being the best all round junior athlete at our school sports day at the same school. In the boarding school I met another girl who was like minded – she also enjoyed drug taking and going to parties. We eventually conspired to run away together to Durban to live it up and do as we pleased. By the grace of God, we only made it as far as the next major city next to Port Elizabeth, East London, before concerned people phoned the police after seeing us hitch hiking on a busy road. We were taken to social workers who called for our parents to fetch us. My mother had spent the previous night driving across South Africa as she had received a call from the school that I was missing. I was relieved to see my mother, though sad and ashamed that I had hurt her.

This incident, however, did not stop me from my ways. A year later, my father was transferred to Pretoria and my whole family was to move up. My older brother had by this time been in quite a successful music band and wanted to stay in Port Elizabeth. I begged my parents if I could stay with him, as I wanted to attend the art college that was close by (and also wanted to be out of their sight so that I could continue using drugs and doing what I wanted). My parents again agreed to my demands. I was enrolled at the art college. During this time I was using cocaine and my parents found out about it as a family friend had noticed something amiss and had phoned them. My parents fetched both my brother and I and took us back to Pretoria. I managed to convince my parents that it was a lie, and that I wanted to go back to the art college. They did not agree. I decided to hitchhike to Port Elizabeth, though ended up in a dangerous area in Johannesburg, Hillbrow, notorious for Nigerian drug dealers. One of these dealers had seen me hiking and had picked me up – he took me to KFC and offered to pay for a flight to Port Elizabeth for me. As young and as naïve as I was I believed him. Fortuanately, God protected me even in that dangerous area and no evil happened to me. I had managed to phone a young boy that I had been seeing and who loved me (he is today my husband)

– he pleaded with the man to not hurt me. My brother had friends in Port Elizabeth who knew this Nigerian and told my brother there were plans to ship me out of the country and use me as a drug mule and sex slave. Thus my brother found my whereabouts and my parents arrived to fetch me. I shudder to think what could have happened to me as an ignorant and foolish teenager. This incident convinced my parents to allow me to return to my home town and live with my boyfriend’s family and continue attending the art college. Three months later my brother and sister were in a serious car accident. My brother died six hours later from internal injuries and blood loss.

During this time, I did go for two or three visits to my family in Pretoria by bus. On one visit I asked my mom to buy me a book for the bus ride back as the ride was over 14 hours long. I chose a book called, “He came to set the captives free.” Since then I have learned that it is quite a controversial book, however the Lord used it to open my eyes to my bondage to sin. On another visit I read a number of the “tribulation force” books about the rapture and coming of Jesus. I continued in the same lifestyle – drugs, partying, aimlessness, though something was changing inside me. I began to be convicted of my sins and a number of times felt as though I was dying while on drugs and cried out to God to forgive me, as I knew my life was not right with Him and did not want to die in my sin. I also prayed for a bible and soon enough a friend of mine gave me a mini new testament. I however continued to abuse drugs and live a sinful lifestyle, though my conscience was bothering me. When my parents visited they told me they and my sister had been baptized. I was interested, though still enjoyed taking drugs, particularly ecstasy and cocaine and did not really want to stop. While they were still in town I had a dream of my deceased brother. In my dream he was being pulled on a stretcher. He suddenly sat up and looked at me. Blood was pouring from his nose and he said, “My only advice to you is to get out of the drug world now.” When I woke up I decided it was time to get baptized and turn my life over to God. I told my parents and soon arrangements were made for me to be baptized by the same person who had baptized them. They were also getting ready to move back to Port Elizabeth. I drove to Pretoria with my parents and read another book that was in the car called “The Call” by Rick Joyner. Jesus was beginning to be more real to me.

Finally one of the most special days of my life arrived, the day I was to be baptized. As we neared the man’s house, I was overjoyed and overcome first by tears and then laughter. I just knew that my life was about to change. When I entered the house I sensed a Presence – a loving, holy presence.  The man explained to me that I was going to be purchased by the blood of Jesus and that God would be my Father and that I would belong to Him. I prayed to God and confessed all my sins to Him while the young man anointed me with oil and prayed for me. Thereafter he baptized me in the swimming pool in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. When I came up from the water I felt as though I were a new person. I had such an indescribable peace within me. I was instantly set free from my smoking and drug addiction. I had a new hunger in my heart – a hunger to fellowship with other Christians and read the word of God.

A week later we had arrived back to our old home in Port Elizabeth that my father had built for us. I was so excited to attend a church. Where would I go? How would I get there? I had already told my boyfriend that I had been baptized and had accepted Jesus as my savior – I told him that I now only wanted to be friends with him. He decided to take me to a church that my mom had suggested (though they still did not attend church even though they had been baptized). That night as I walked into the church I again sensed the same Presence – I can only describe it as a holy, loving presence that was like the sunshine, but my heart was drinking in the warmth. The service began with praise and worship. I was amazed as the people sang, clapped and worshipped the Lord Jesus with such enthusiasm. I joined in, singing with all my heart to the Lord Jesus. Suddenly the most amazing thing began happening to me. An electrical current raced though my entire body, increasing in intensity and it felt as though Someone was holding both my hands tightly down at my sides. My whole body was shaking. My heart was bursting, and from deep within me I was communicating with God with groans that words cannot express. As the worship ended, I opened my eyes and was just bursting to tell someone what had happened to me. God restrained me until the service had ended. I was filled to the brim and overflowing with intense love, joy, peace, contentment. On the way home I couldn’t help but sing and praise God. Later I learned about the baptism of the Holy Spirit which is promised to all who will repent of their sins and receive Jesus. My young friend became upset as I told him what had happened to me during the service. He had been uncomfortable in the church as he had been raised in a conservative Dutch reformed church. However, that night when he got home, he told me that he went down on his knees alone in his room and repented of his sins. Three months later he was also baptized and was given the gift of speaking in tongues immediately aft After experiencing God so intimately I was a completely new person. I was so in love with Jesus and passionately on fire for God, witnessing to anyone who would listen and attending church as often as possible to learn God’s word and worship Him. My whole appearance changed, my eyes were bright and there was a smile on my face! I could look people in the eye, and no longer walked with eyes downcast, looking at the ground. I no longer dressed only in black or wore too revealing clothes. My desire for drugs, cigarettes and partying was completely gone. I decided to return to high school to finish my schooling. I was enrolled at a private school that would allow me to complete my final year, even though I had not completed grades 10 and 11. I worked hard and finished my schooling as the second top student – all to the glory of God. Through God I also started a prayer group at the school and another young boy accepted Jesus as his savior and experienced God in the same way I had. He is still serving God today in the field of medicine. My dream was to experience a Year of your Life programme done through a bible school after completing school, but it did not work out. Instead I was accepted into University to study to become a teacher. I desperately wanted to do good and make a difference in the world and serve God with all my heart.

After the first year of being a Christian I suddenly began to experience many trials and felt as though God was withdrawing His presence from me. My young friend said that the “honeymoon” was over. I was very saddened and began to seek God wholeheartedly. I learned scriptures such as the parable of the sower and was determined to not be as those who quickly receive God’s message with joy, but then fall away soon after when tribulation arises because of the word. I memorized encouraging scriptures about God never leaving, nor forsaking me and read the bible and prayed every day. I began to mature in my faith – though was by no means perfect. I had to daily confess my sins, cast down thoughts and discipline myself. I learned how gracious and compassionate God is, and also developed a healthy fear of God as the one who would judge my works. I once again began to feel secure in my position in Christ Jesus as the one who saves us.

I was baptized in November 1999, it is now August 2011 and I am still free of drugs and cigarettes. I am now married to my young friend who experienced salvation with me, and we have two beautiful daughters. I give God all the glory and praise for the wonderful work He has done in me, as well as for all the wonderful works He is doing throughout the earth.

I wrote a poem about the wonderful grace of God a number of years ago that I hope can encourage others, too .

Praise To The Glory Of His Grace

A righteousness of my own I cannot achieve

For in my sinful nature nothing good lives

Humbly I come to God to receive the righteousness which through Christ He gives.

My nakedness I cannot hide from God

Nor whiten my filthy ragged array

By grace He clothes me in a shining white robe

And washes all my sin and shame away.

This grace is given to a sinner like me

Not through any good deed of mine

The Son of God hung on a tree

As the ultimate sacrifice of all time.

The righteous God sits on His throne

And the resurrected Christ at His right hand now alive to Him

I am not my own as a new creation before Him I stand.

Now very soon, Yes it’s at the door

Jesus will return in great power and glory

The dead and alive in Christ will meet Him in the air

We will further be clothed with immortality.

A heavenly city God has prepared

Where righteousness, holiness and peace abound

This is where He will bring all His heirs who once were lost but now have been found.

Jesus did it!!!

Photo credit: Google

Prayer Tuesday

Father, God and sovereign Lord of all creation, thank you for your incredible love for me.

 While I know I don’t deserve your overwhelming and generous Grace, I rejoice in it. While I know my best attempts at honouring you fall short, thank you for promising to welcome me into your presence, care for me, and comfort me when I come home to you. Your love, O! Lord, is beyond my comprehension and exhausts my appreciation while filling my heart with wonder and praise. In Jesus name .. Amen!!!