DIALOGUE OF DEVILS


Oh no! Oh No! This is not good, this is not good at all. Rekuz shook his head vehemently and paced in agitation.
This is a problem…A real problem! What shall I do? he continued, pacing, till Isnurzeta appeared.
You summoned, Rekuz?
Yes, I did. Isnurzeta, I am in grave trouble. I am doomed. Rekuz said, barely composing himself.
Why, whats the matter?
My assignment… It has been compromised… My human… Look! Rekuz pointed to nowhere in particular, yet soon, an image formed of two people talking, a young woman and another being, not human, not quite but perceptible, sensible, – a Spirit.
Wait! Is that who I think it is? Isnurzeta said, also becoming agitated.
Yes, it is the Holy One. Rekuz nodded in frustration, Isnurzeta was getting vexed.
But Rekuz, you were never supposed to allow this to happen. You know by reason of divination, this particular soul would do our kingdom much harm if she responds to her true call; the reason she was never allowed to come in close contact with that gospel of salvation. How could you let this happen?!
Yes, yes. I know. I let my guard down for once; you know that The Holy One has many of his children restlessly proclaiming that gospel wherever they go. I was unfortunate enough that she came in contact with one as a course mate.
Isnurzeta shook his head. That doesn’t anymore. now what do we do? Already what I see is a close bond between them. She looks to be learning of him and knowing him well enough to love him. Look how attentively she listens to his direction, look how earnestly she pours out her heart to him! You must do something quickly, Rekuz!
Yes, I know, but theres a peculiar weakness I can use… Two actually.
What could that be?
First, low self-esteem. She has a history of scarring words from those who raised her and that have diminished her sense of worth. Reminding her of these words and making her feel useless has been my tactic, several times and it has never failed me.
Im afraid it may fail this time, Rekuz! Look, he pointed in the direction of the displaying image shes beginning to have an understanding of who shereallyis.
Patience Isnurzeta! For the other half is the best part. It is none other than the very trustedlust.As a teenager, she was exposed to much of romantic and erotic material as a means of escaping her own life. She has always fantasized about meeting the type of perfect man portrayed in such stories. Although, recently, she has been too distracted with her relationship with the Holy One to conceive such thoughts. However, she is still largely ignorant of the victory that is hers over these things which can work to our advantage.
Isnurzeta smiled now realizing Rekuzs plan You want me to influence my human to her, dont you?
Well, yes. I thought very carefully about the manner of man to make her abandon her newfound interest in the Holy One. She neednt fall completely, she need only be greatly distracted and I can take things over from there.
Alright, I will surely help out, for you have also been of a great assistance. Remember how we joined forces against that man who was sent of the Holy One to pioneer what would have been a great awakening to the church. How we made him fall face-in-the-dirt, falling short of his calling. Isnurzeta said, a sinister smile forming on his face.
Surely, I remember. We made him think highly of himself and he left the fellowship of his brethren. Then we slew him with his own sword. Didnt the scriptures say, Two are better than one? Rekuz said, smiling in reminiscence.

Isnurzeta shook his head as if in relief It was a close call, something that would have been a terrible blow to this kingdom of darkness but we were able to make use of pride and disunity to stifle it all and lead him, the pioneer, out of the way altogether. I still have the badge of honour in the ranks of darkness for that assignmentand so I am indebted to you Rekuz. I will influence my human towards her direction and whisper some suggestions to his unguarded heart. It is done.


This gave Rekuz much relief and both devils grinned at the ingenuity of their scheme.

JESUS WANTS YOU TO LIVE IN THE MOMENT

Take a group of young people and ask them what their greatest fear is, most of them will tell you the futurewhich is not surprising. The old person has a retrospective outlook on life, thinking back on his life and the decisions he has made whilst the young man has a more forward-looking approach. He has his whole life ahead of him and usually if he is a wise young man, he doesnt want to make any mistakes or mess up his future; neither does he want to have any regrets.

To be honest, life is too short to be making mistakes that youll spend your life regretting. Being cautious is actually a very wise approach. For this reason, a Christian youth who has a promise from God about his tomorrow (his future) will most likely want to do everything possible to be like Abraham and enjoy those promises as opposed to Moses who only see the promised land but never actually inhabits it. Such a youth would most likely take necessary steps like walking closely with God, fleeing from the very appearance of evil etc.

There is, however, one unfortunate mistake the youth makes in preparing for his bright and beautiful tomorrow and that is; forgetting he is in today! He is so zealous about praying and paving the way for the future that he does not make the most of his present situation. He is so busy fantasizing about the wonderful family God will give him that he forgets to show love and care to the family he presently has. He begins to plot and plan and scheme, trying to secure that glorious destiny he knows to be his. He is always preparing for future greatness that he is presently useless because he is simply too self-centred to perceive the needs around him.

There is another similar category of youth who doesnt believe he has what it takes to serve or please Jesus today, he believes he has to accumulate some form of stature to make Jesus happy and when he is well trained enough, perhaps he will be able to please Jesus. Then, he could be a pastor, an apostle or a missionary but for now, he is still a lowly youth and he has nothing to give Jesus.

None of these young people is walking in the fullness of Gods plan for them. Gods plan for you is not always the hazy 20 years from now that you cannot completely grasp but only hope for, no. Today is part of Gods plan for you. Yesterday was part of Gods plan for you, tomorrow is Gods plan for you. These are composites of purpose. Dont think you will become 40 and magically begin to carry out Gods will for your life and dont be so preoccupied with how great you hope to be by the time you are 50 that you dont make the most of your life as a 25-year-old.

God doesnt want you to be so future-focused that you fail to acknowledge and maximise the present. He wants you to seize today! Love those around you today! Be the light today! If all you can be certain of is today, why waste it thinking youll do better tomorrow? What if you dont get tomorrow?

Jesus knew people had a certain predisposition to think about the future to the point of it causing them anxiety and tension that he had to give them the formula in the Lords prayer when he said the words Give us our daily bread (Matt 6:11). That means we ask God for todays provision not worrying about what tomorrow will bring knowing that the God who cares for us today is capable of doing so tomorrow. Jesus further elaborates this in Matthew 6:25-27, and Paul the apostle also clearly states in Philippians 4:6-7. The next action to take when you are feeling anxious about anythingespecially the futuretalk to God about it! It is not for you to scheme and plan, no, it is for you to pray and let God have his way.

Conclusively, beloved believer, time is the most valuable resource common to all men and God wants you to make the most of it. Dont waste it thinking you are not yet good enough to do his will. All He requires of you is to love him and love those around you. This he will give you the grace to do by the help of his Spirit.

Shalom, beloved.

If the Son, therefore, shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed

WRITING PROMPT: Isaiah 52:1

* * *

Adele had come to this program not sure what she was looking for. She was confused. But then confusion was not new to her. She had been confused for the past three years. Confused, disoriented, broken, depressed and so on and so forth. She was all these things but mostly she was tired. She was tired of herself, her life; her body.

Every morning when she had her bath she scrubbed her body twice as hard because she was tired of feeling it was so dirty but no matter how hard she scrubbed, she never felt clean enough; whole enough. She could never scrub away that night…the four of them…No.

Here she was again at another church program looking for something but she wasnt sure what. She had met Jesus at a program like this, three months ago and had given her life to him and honestly, he had made things better. Sometimes, she could almost forget. She could almost enjoy this new life but most of the time she felt so held back; heavy, unlovable, violated. She wanted to stop feeling this way, she wanted to feel…free. Completely free. She needed to hear him (Jesus) speak to her, she needed an assurance that he could give her what she was looking for.

Adele came out of her reverie soon enough to hear the words;

There is a word someone here. God asked me to tell you he feels your pain, he sees your broken heart. The minister spoke from the pulpit looking at no one in particular.

Youre a sister, you were raped 3 years ago and you have carried this burden ever since. The Lord asked me to tell you, that it is time to be completely whole. It is time to let it go. Adele looked up at the person speaking in amazement, her eyes welling up with warm tears.

Could it be? No…Oh God…yes

The word God led me to give you comes from Isaiah 52 verses 1 and 2.

Adele rushed to open her bible as the minister began to speak, she could no longer hear a womans voice but the voice of God himself and as she read, He spoke;

Awake, awake put on thy strength O Zion, put on thy beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city (she heard an emphasis on the word holy like she was no longer dirty, or violated but now holy.): for henceforth there shall no more come into thee the uncircumcised and the unclean. Shake off thy dust; arise and sit down, O Jerusalem. Loose thyself from the bands of thy neck o captive daughter of Zion.

Adele only heard love, she only heard deliverance, she only heard God and he was making her whole. What was this unfamiliar but pleasant feeling she had not experienced in the past 3 years? Ah yes, liberty.

WRITING PROMPT: Job 3:25

For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me, and that which I was afraid of is come unto me.

*             *             *

It was a room filled with bright young faces, male and female, all nicely dressed, very enthusiastic and full of zeal. It was the first edition of the Mighty Youth of Purpose Conference (MYPC) and Demilade was very proud of the fact that his vision was being actualised though by another president, his successor, but still his vision.

As he looked at the crowd, he smiled slightly but internally he could barely contain his joy. God is good he thought. The actualisation of his vision at least had to be a sign that God was with him, He had even been invited to speak…

Surely, God was with him,

Surely, God had forgiven him.

Now well be calling on our first panellist on the topic; The Young Mans Restlessness. Join me to welcome the erstwhile president of this blessed assembly, Brother Badmus Demilade Gbemileke.

The audience roared in applause. Demilade went on to the pulpit with a deliberate carriage that suited only a man of God. He stood at the platform, smiled down on the congregation and urged them not to clap for him but only for Jesus for he was nothing but a humble messenger of Jesus, the applause only roared louder as he had expected and much to his delight.

Alright, Alright. Im so grateful for this opportunity. And you know the topic given to me is one I consider so crucial. I want to talk about it from the perspective of Ecclesiastes 11 verse 1 which says…  No sooner had he tried to end his sentence had the words screamed back at him…

Liar! Hypocrite! Dont listen to this man, he is a Liar! the voice shouted. The gathering went completely silent. Demilade himself froze, too stunned to speak.

The owner of the voice emerged out of the crowd an angry-looking young woman. Demilade recognised her immediately. It was Margaret. Sister Ayobami Margaret Folashade.

Oh no, Demilade mumbled. His life; ministry; and future were over. The thing he had feared the most was happening.

THOUGHTS & STUFF: A MESSY MISCELLANY

WHY AM I WRITING THIS?

Hey you, Ive got a question for you. Why are you reading this? Are you bored? Do you like reading? Do you know me and would like to know more about me? Do you just enjoy blogs? Or are you just a friend trying to encourage me? Well, whichever you are, you are so welcome. I like people reading my work, it gives me joy.

For me, Im writing this because:

  1. I legit just love writing (and writing about myself is like the easiest topic ever. )
  2. There are a few sentences in this essay I want you to read (I like the idea of being a good influence on you. )
  3. Im honestly trying to be a better writer (dont even ask me why because I honestly dont know.) and I think the best way is to practice. So here we are.

With these few reasons I hope I have been able to convince you and not to confuse you but I will probably do both along the line…hehehe.

ASUU STRIKE SO FAR

My feelings about the strike summarized in this one picture

As I stare in front of my computer pondering the progression of this essay, drinking coffee that definitely has too much sugar, I can tell you for a fact that this strike has been… what is that word…euphoric? I guess. So it hasn’t exactly been a bed of roses because it is a strike. But its been okay. I mean, I personally cant complain cos Ive been doing a lot of stuff I enjoy which really just means Ive been reading and writing.

Also, I was thinking about my life a lot I mean previously, before this whole break thing (as far back as my last birthday) and I realised I have to be very intentional about the kind of future I want to have. So, I made some decisions and I have tried to pattern my actions and present choices along with those decisions. Before doing this, I used to get very anxious about the future and what it held but recently Ive learned to trust God and follow His leading and instructions. His promise to me is if I do this, Ill be alright (See Proverbs 3:5-6).

So yeah, Ive been a lot less anxious and troubled; I compare myself with people a lot less now because I know Gods got me. I also know that Faith without work is dead, this is what His word tells me so that when He gives me a promise, He also gives me certain instructions in line with that promise so that it can be fulfilled. I cant think of a better way to live.

So in line with this and with certain patterns, I noticed from God over time, I decided to draft out 3 major goals for myself. Just 3. Thats it. The reason is Im a kind of person with a lot of interests. I get excited very easily by ‘prospects’ but God is teaching me that if you want to be prosperous, you have to get your priorities straight and you have to be focused. So I have just 3 things I must achieve with this break but dont get me wrong I have sub-projects too oh.

One of such is writing. I want to do a lot of writing I mean like a lottt. I dont really know why. It probably has something to do with the fact that I just love it. Im also trying to learn things that would help me write better, I mean Im literally reading a book on punctuations (WHICH HAS ONLY LEFT ME MORE CONFUSED). The funny thing is I dont see myself being a writer, as in writing to earn a living but I just derive so much joy from it and I dont see any reason to deprive myself of such joy.

Im also trying to read a lot more because there are just certain things I feel I should know if I would be able to claim Im educated and as you may have by now already figured out…I like reading. Speaking of reading, I wanted to do a review of an amazing book I read that I want you to read. Its called; This PRESENT DARKNESS by Frank Peretti and I would like to make my case for it.

WHY YOU SHOULD READ: This PRESENT DARKNESS

By the way I am very proud of myself for finishing 508pages of this because when last??

*Back Story

So recently, I noticed I have this weird love for the 80s and 90s, especially the 80s. Its weird because I am barely a ’90s child’ but theres something about that epoch I just love sooo much. The songs, the aesthetic, I think especially the Christians. It seems like it was an exhilarating time and if I could go to any period in history it would definitely be the 80s (most likely to a Don Moen concert).

Because of this strange affinity for these two decades, I became a lot more interested in Christian fiction from that era. I would literally google; 90s Christian fiction and mostly what Id find is some Christian romance novels (me rolling my eyes at this entire genre because I find it so unimpressive. If I have offended you, kindly drink water). But something that kept on popping up was This PRESENT DARKNESS and because I had previously heard a lot of good stuff about it, I decided to read it. Also, I was writing something that had a similar subject matter.

*The book itself

I hadnt read a novel in a long time because the time is just no dey. But reading this book was truly refreshing, it got me out of a reading slump and I finished like 2 books while reading this.

It was really interesting, and the emphasis on prayer and spiritual warfare could not be more on point. It definitely spoke to me about the importance of interceding and also showed just how powerful a Christian is on his knees.

I enjoyed the characters a lot because, for the most part, they were realistic but some of them were just so UNNECESSARY and at some point, he (the writer) definitely began to overdo it with certain character traits, for instance, theres this one character whose major trait is his foolishness but then he is sooo foolish and it just begins to get annoying especially because the plot would have gotten by just fine without him.

It was a thrilling read and I screamed a lot while reading it, both screams of despair and excitement. It particularly reminded me of one of my best fiction books which is The Rising by Jerry Jenkins and Tim LaHaye (a book I love so much, words cannot even begin to describe).  If youre a Christian that likes reading fiction and youre tired of that clich矇 genre that is Christian romance (yes, I said what I said), you should definitely check this book out.

AS A PARTING GIFT…

Since Im dropping recommendations… Have you heard Dunsin Oyekans most recent album; The glory experience? Chaii The beautyyy! (No, I am not exaggerating). It is so beautiful. You absolutely must listen to it! Even the cover art is utterly brilliant and very ahead of its time. Its not just music, it is worship. And I am giving you the gift of this recommendation. yes, youre welcome.

It has in fact been a fun ride writing this and I hope youve enjoyed reading it too. Its a blog, a couple of thoughts, its a messy miscellany and I really appreciate you for taking your time to read it. I hope we do this more.

Bye friend.

EASTER SUNDAY IN MY CHURCH

Hello there! As you know today is Easter Sunday and its a really great day! For me, this has been true both symbolically and literally. For real, I have had a blast today and I would like to share some of that with you. So let me tell you about my service but before that let me give you some background on my church.

So I have three places of worship and all of them are close to my heart. One of them is in Lokoja, Kogi state, one of them is Lagos Iganmu, and one of them is in Ile-Ife Osun State. The one I want to tell you about is the one in Lokoja. 

My church is a really wonderful place to be (and Im not just saying this because its my church). If you are really observant you will notice the most interesting and beautiful people. Case in point, theres this mommy (I cant disclose names here for privacy reasons sorry.) shes really great, she reminds me of my mom in that shes so energetic, shes like the paragon of a fervent Christian woman. One thing I particularly love about her is how she hypes up every minister on the pulpit, youre leading praise and worship and the church is dull? She got you. Her shout of praise lasan will quicken everybodys spirit. Youre leading prayer and nobody is responding? She got you. When she burst forth into tongues everybody head go set. I like to think of her as the ministers hype woman’. And I just love how she can encourage not just the congregation but also the minister.

And then theres her daughter who has the same face as her like Im not kidding, theyre identical. Its lovely to see really. The daughter is a young girl of like… 7 to 9 who is just as carefree and friendly as 7 to 9-year-olds come. You will find her casually doling out hugs and quite indiscriminately to members of the congregation. I like to call her my church bestie.

Last but not least (and though itd be great to describe everyone, this is all we have time for. Sorry); this beautiful couple makes me believe in true love. I no dey even joke (pidgin is my chosen language of emphasis. Thank you). They are just sooo cute. Like theyre middle-aged but very obviously care about each other. There was a time they used to sit in front of me and Id just see the husband look at his wife IN THE MIDDLE OF SERVICE and just smile at her. Like, they would just exchange glances FOR NO REASON. Ladies and gentlemen I present to you; Love! They have a really beautiful family, the woman herself is so pure and sweet and the man so simple and spirit-filled (Heavenly Father, as I type this, I urge you to remember your girl.)

So about Service today, it was pretty amazing. I had already been stoked about this Sunday because of some really wonderful testimonies I had the previous week but coming to church this day, I just felt super excited all through the service. I guess the revelation of Easter just hit me anew. And I danced and danced. Me wey no fit dance, kon dey dance Igala song. Wetin I dey dance? I no even know I just dey dance.

The worship was so beautiful. My heart felt so full of gratitude. I wasnt trying to conjure feelings. I genuinely felt grateful. Not to mention how inspired I was. I had so many ideas. Some of which I had to jot down, Im sure God can understand after there is a spirit in man and you know, it is the inspiration of the Almighty that gives him understanding…

There was one particularly funny incident that happened. Its like this;

Me (literally every time Im asked): Im not Yoruba. Im not Yoruba. I belong to a minority tribe.

Announcement: Well be having tribal thanksgiving. So well come out tribe by tribe to praise God.

Me: (realising we no pass 2 wey dey my tribe for this church) suddenly becomes very very Yoruba. After all, my name is Boluwatife.

Conclusively, I had such a glorious time in church today but I am even happier that such joy isnt restricted to church buildings because I am the temple of God and I carry him with me everywhere I go and I must say, thats pretty great.

Thoughts and Stuff

So recently, I decided to take some time off the internet (mostly Whatsapp tbh) and in this space of time, I had fun doing things I legitimately enjoy; reading and writing. But then I also noticed I have a lot of numbers but very few conversations.

This is partly because I’m not a very chatty person honestly. If something doesn’t interest me, I’d rather not contribute and also I just don’t like stress (otherwise known as last born syndrome) and sometimes this spills over to discussions and I’d rather just be minding my own business than talking about whatever.

But recently, I noticed how few conversations I was having with very few people like 98% of my discussions on Whatsapp are because some thing should be done somewhere and of course the usual courteous hi, bye’ only 2% are like real conversations and only 1% is about something novel and interesting.

Anyway, this is not an intervention or something, it’s really not that deep. I would just like to talk to more people about stuff, themselves, interesting things, things they like.
I hope I can. I’ll try it anyway.

Wedding Vows

Weddings: very lovely, everybody (lol, sorry) most people like weddings, cute stuff, the festivity; color, excitement, sense of love and family etc.
But arguably one of the most serious aspects of the wedding is the exchange of vows, you know those words that the minister (in some cases) makes the couple agree to.

Minister: X, do you take this woman to be your wife, to live together in (holy) matrimony, to love her, to honor her, to comfort her, and to keep her
in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, for as long as you both shall live?”


X: I do.


* * *
The process is then again repeated with the wife, and then the couple goes on to repeat the vows to each other just so everybody can no they are not playing.

Now the whole point of this is not to discuss how wonderful weddings are but to relate it to our christian Faith.
To me ehn, a relationship with Jesus can be likened to many things and one of them is marriage.
You see at the point of salvation it’s like making these marriage vows. These very sacred vows, I guess Jesus made his on the cross when he said it is finished” and we make ours when we confess him as our Lord.

But you see, vows are not the problem, anybody can say anything. Living out what you said. That’s the issue.

Some vows go like:
For richer or poorer
In sickness and in health
Till death do you part.

Ah ah…..that means no escape, no conditionality, you’re more or less bound to each other (at least that’s what it should mean, under normal circumstance)

But then the thing is…that is not so easy.
To love you when things are not going well is not convenient. To follow Jesus when things are not going well, is not convenient.
Anybody that tells you marriage is pure enjoyment is a liar, anybody that says Jesus is guaranteeing you a life of pure enjoyment, is a liar, at least apostle Paul is an obvious evidence that just isn’t the case.

But you know that there are good times; times of richer’, and times of health’ but when those times fade away and what you are left with is sickness’ and poorer’ will you still stay true to to your marriage vows?

You may find yourself in a series of difficult situations (when I say series, I mean series)
And You begin to wonder…is this what I signed up for? Is this really part of the package?

Yes, yes it is.

And that is what wedding vows show you…that you get to have the good times, and you also have the hard times. But they are not mutual exclusive, they are within the same relationship and you should know this, knowing this, would you still choose proceed with this relationship?

So yes, hard times will come but then as Christians we must realize we have vows to keep, he has kept his, we must keep ours. We must be faithful in this relationship even as he is faithful to us
So whether richer or poorer, in sickness or in health… nothing (in our case) shall do us part.

God dey your back

This morning/afternoon google photos sent me a spotlight reel (or whatever they call it) of pictures with my baby nephew.
I must confess I miss that troublesome cookie.
I don’t even know how it’s doing me today, a very strong urge not to do again’ just overwhelmed me.

Like make we just pack up dey go.
Do you ever feel like that?
But that’s the thing about our feelings, they can be temporal, transient, distracting, deceitful.
But how do you tell that to a young person?
How do you tell them see guy relax, God dey your back. You go make am las las’

Sometimes It can be really confusing, you begin to wonder this time…am I using it wisely? What should I be doing? Is A’s path the same as mine? Can I trust that God will get me to my own promised land’?

Look, make I no actually lie give you. This questions them go come but you’ve got to let the Holy Spirit remind you (kinda like I’m trying to (let him) do now)

And Verses like these (Go lift your spirit):

II Corinthians 5:7
Numbers 24:19

Joshua 1:9
IICorinthians 1:20
Romans 8:32
I Thessalonians 5:24

.
Essentially what God is saying to me and if you ever notice yourself getting anxious as well is simply:
Don’t be doubtful, don’t be discouraged, God dey your back.

Thoughts on running

One of the reasons I love the song Highs and lows by Hillsong is because of the video.
In the video the singer is just running and running and running.
Where is he running to?
Where is he going?
You don’t know
He can’t sit still, he can’t go back. all he can do is run.
This year I felt like that.
I’ve had pre-visions of myself running
So vivid I can almost reach out and touch it.
Where am I running to?
What am I running towards
I don’t know?
I’m not sure?
I just see myself going
Never relenting
Not really fainting if at all fainting, I’m still pursuing (biblical allusion right there)
Do I get tired?
All the time.
Literally all the time.
Will I keep running?
I want to say you bet”
But honestly, I guess”
If I don’t die
I’ll be on my feet
I’m still running
I’ll still keep running.

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