Not so much a blog post…

… But a reminder that NWM is back this friday with a social gathering to celebrate the end of the month! Or just another excuse to eat some good food really!

We will be meeting at Vapiano Bankside at 8pm. So if you are in the area, feel free to come along!

Other than that, have a great week x

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A Valuable Lesson…

I have to admit that this weekend, I was seriously excited by the BRILLIANT news that Richard Blackwood is to join Eastenders in February!

richard blackwood

I’ve always liked Mr Blackwood ever since the days of MTV Select and have to say I even admire his work ethic and determination. Why? Because despite the setbacks he may have faced in the past, one thing you can never accuse him of is giving up on his dream.

Pursuing any type of dream is never easy and yes there will come the times where we feel it’s probably easier to give up, as the dream seems like too much work to make it a reality. But one thing that I and anyone else for that matter, can be reassured by is the fact that however hard things may seem there is always hope.

I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] – John 16:33 AMP

If we place our confidence in the ability of God as opposed to our own ability, then the despite the setbacks we may face along the way or even the persecution that some will come up against, we have this unfailing hope and confidence that He is fighting our corner.

We mustn’t forget that He has made it clear that we will face things. It’s a fact but he has also backed us with His strength to overcome as He has already overcome the worst for the ones who will believe His Word and trust Him.

keep going

So my encouragement is simply this: even if its taking too long or the route looks nothing like you imagined it would, take heart and know that God has you and your dreams in the palm of his hand. He has overcome any obstacle and any hurdle that you may face along the way. It’s your job to simply carry on and never quit!

yahomer

Heart 2 Heart… and flawless skin!

get out of bed

Well hello Monday!You see as I said that, I almost convinced myself that the weather was wonderful and all was right with the world! But alas, the weather is awful!It may not freezing cold but so grey it makes you want to stay in bed ALL day, which if I’m honest, I almost did, had it not been those pesky little, sweet, sometimes crazy, kids that I call my own!

Selah!

Anyone would think I hate Monday mornings, but truth be told, its one of my favourite days after Friday and Saturday! Mondays offer us a brand new start to a new week and if there’s one thing I lurve, its all things new! New notepads, new skin care routines ( which by the way I have just started!)new pen sets, new babies, new car smells and obviously new clothes! But what I love the most is new ideas! And it wouldn’t make sense for me to talk about new things if I didn’t talk about my new idea for my blogging! It’s a new way to keep myself accountable to you (the other person I pray is on the other end of the screen!).

So here is my new commitment to you o faithful reader; I will be blogging EVERY Monday (one of my favourite days and all that jazz)!!!

But not only will I be giving you all my new thoughts/ideas/rants/melt-downs, but I will use this to post up any follow up notes from the NWM meetings I would have held the previous Friday.

So to the girl who wants to know what NWM is all about or what types of things we discuss, I pray that these follow up notes would give you a little insight to who we are and what we do and maybe encourage you come along one evening???

We will see!

So of course, we met up for NWM on Friday evening and with a message titled “Heart 2 Heart” there was no doubt a lot discuss.

One of the key things we were talking about was the importance of having a regular spiritual check up. We all know the importance of having a physical check up every now and then to ensure our bodies are ticking correctly, but so many of us fail to see the importance of checking our spiritual health to ensure that we are going in the right direction and on course to a healthy destination.Truth be told, our spiritual condition will go on to affect our physical health so why not get to the real issues by tackling the most important thing first?

heartbeat

So what areas should we be assessing during our spiritual check up?

Our Heart: We need to ensure that our hearts are open to God through His Word and His counsel. But sometimes we become so hardened through our experiences and our ideologies that it becomes impossible for Him to work in or through us. We need to make sure our hearts are malleable (able to be hammered or pressed into shape, impressionable, compliant or submissive) when it comes to God and our relationship with Him. Remember, a heart turned in towards God will begin to reflect on the outside. If you don’t believe me, then read Exodus 34:29-35 MSG. Not only was Moses well respected in the community for His relationship with God, but also his face glowed as a result His intimacy with God. Who doesn’t want their skin to glow?

Our Thoughts: What we give our attention to will show up in our life. If outwardly we are all prim, proper and perfect, but our thought life is polluted with pornographic images from the night before, then give it time, it will soon begin to manifest itself in more ways than we could ever imagine. That’s why we need to be more cautious about what we allow into our ear and eye gates. What we feed the most will be the strongest thing after all. Proverbs 4:23 AMP makes it clear that we ought to guard our hearts so remember, what we allow through these gates are the things we deemed safe enough for our hearts. Can you honestly say that everything you have allowed in your ear and eye gates is beneficial?

Our Words: As we begin to cleanse our hearts, we will begin to see the connection it has to the words that we speak. Your thoughts are no doubt revealed in your conversations. Psalm 119: 1 AMP talks about the blessings that await those whose conversations are in line with God as opposed to being gossip filled and laden with lies. It takes discipline to be able to curb our conversation but as I have learnt recently; Discipline may weigh ounces but regret from a careless word weighs a ton! Which you rather have?

Our Actions: When we work all three of these areas and then come up with a plan for our actions, we are taking control over the stubborn areas of our lives and submitting them to God as an offering. Sometimes though, we try to work on our actions first and as we discussed on Friday, this is often one of the biggest mistakes we can make. God doesn’t want performance filled relationship. He wants truth and honesty. And the good thing is, we can start from where we are if we would give Him our heart. He can shape something beautiful from the present chaos in our lives. (Psalm 51:7-17 MSG)

If there is only ONE thing that we take away from this blog post or even fridays meeting, then let it be this; Keep Showing Up! What I mean is that, this is a process, its all part of the journey that is life. So we shouldn’t expect our hearts to be changed over night. But what we should know is that by faith He is working in and on us to make us the very best that He has seen each one of us become. If we would hold on to this precious promise, we will be fit and ready for any good work that he predestined us for. (2 Timothy 2:21 AMP)

cleansing the skin

Just like my new facial routine that I have started, my spiritual cleansing will not be evident straight away. I will have some bumps along the way and face major disappointments with myself. However, if I am consistent in my efforts as a renewed heart and I Keep Showing Up, then He will come alongside me and be the help that I need.

Now go and get YOUR check up! xxx

wise homer

New Year, New Me…Oh Crap!

happy new year

“In 2015, I’m going to do (insert new thing here) OR “I’m going to stop doing (insert bad habit here).”

How familiar does this sound? How many Facebook/twitter/ instagram posts did you see stating the habits that many of our social media friends were going to begin?

It’s almost as if we believe that as the clock strikes midnight, we are going to gain some miraculous superhero strength that’s only available once a year on January 1st and that we couldn’t possibly begin to instil new habits any other time of the year because that would be absolutely ludicrous!

I used to think the exact same way until I realised that yes, we do need to have goals, things to focus on and build our lives on, but these should be set all year round and not just on the first day of the year only to be put into practice and then forgotten about less than 4 weeks later. After all, studies have shown that most people have given up on their new years resolutions by February 1st! So for all you regular gym users struggling to find parking in the first week of the new year, don’t worry, service and parking spaces will be back to normal in about 3 weeks when the new influx decide to try again next January!

I quit new years resolutions just under 2 years ago when I realised that if I really wanted to see changes in my life, then I would need to start creating a lifestyle as opposed to an unrealistic fad that would lift me up for a short period of time only to shoot me back down again just a couple weeks later.

Over the weekend, I met with a friend over coffee (actually mine was a green tea since coffee, to me, tastes like sadness in a cup!).

When I asked her what her goals were, I loved her response of how she decided last year to focus on being the best “me” that she could be.

And I think that’s the point that most of us are missing.

Rather than focusing on the bad habits we want to break unrealistically, I believe we ought to be more focused on becoming the best “us” or “me” that we could possibly be. If we were on all on continuous quest to better ourselves, then we wouldn’t need to wait until January 1st to build a better foundation for the year to come. Instead we would live our lives filled with the confidence and the sense of fulfilment that each of us desires to have if we took the time out daily rather than yearly, to set goals, build vision and work on ourselves.

God, make a fresh start in me, shape a Genesis week from the chaos of my life. Don’t throw me out with the trash, or fail to breathe holiness in me. Bring me back from gray exile, put a fresh wind in my sails! Psalm 51:10-12 MSG

Please understand, I’m not against setting new years resolutions because they still give you vision. What I am against that way we limit ourselves to only think its possible to better ourselves at the beginning of the year as opposed to all year round. I need a FRESH wind in my sails daily so why would I wait for the New Year before I made the changes that my body/finances/career needed in just one season of the year?

Maybe you disagree with me. If so, I would like to hear from YOU, your reasons for this. Please feel free to comment below, and who knows, maybe you’ll change my opinion…or maybe not! Happy New Year!

homer exercise

P.S: NWM is back THIS Friday (09/01/15) and I would love for you to come along and join the journey in our women’s Bible study group. We meet for 7:30pm in Thamesmead, London area. So if you or anyone you know would like to come then shoot me over an email: adenikenwm@gmail.com

xxx

Basically…

So on Friday 26th September, we had NWM and boy was I glad to be doing what I love the most; talking!

elmo talks

But on a serious note, it felt good to be able to share the message and the visions I have for NWM and what it’s all about.

So what is it about? I hear you say. Well, NWM is more than a Bible Study. My hope and my prayer is that NWM will always be a community of women doing life authentically together with the hope of encouraging and inspiring one another to go deeper in our faith, aim higher in our goals and further with our discipline.

Although most of the girls in attendance of Fridays meeting were most likely familiar with the message of NWM, I felt it necessary to go over the vision, as it was important that everyone knew where NWM was heading. It’s important that those who come alongside you have a clear vision of the direction you are heading into so that no one loses focus or drops off along the way, unsure of what’s ahead.

“Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.- Matthew 5:14-16 MSG

 

One of the key things we touched on was how we are shining lights in this world. We discussed how we could make a difference in our environments and how we could be seeds of change in our sphere of contact.

lets do coffee together

I believe that no matter where we are, we can still show the light that God has placed within us by choosing to be the change we want to see.

If we are in an environment that’s full of gossip and malice, then why not start by changing the direction in which a conversation goes. Or maybe just walking away when that type of negativity begins to rear its ugly head, will show another girl or woman in your circle how to behave when these things begin to happen.smiley faces

You never know how your decision to be different could affect another person.

One thing I wanted each girl to realize is that not everybody will give you the opportunity to share the gospel with him or her, but everybody you come into contact with will be given an insight into your faith just by the way you act.

It’s very important we remember this on a daily basis. I am by no means saying we should be “fake” because eventually what’s inside us will pour out. But we need to be mindful of the One we claim to represent on a daily basis.

Other key areas we looked at included the fact that:

  • God never intended for us to do life alone, hence the reason there are so many great examples of relationship in the Bible.
  • Friendship is a vital part of NWM. And that’s why I encourage each girl who comes along, to invite somebody else.
  • NWM isn’t about numbers. If that were the case, I would have stopped doing it a long time ago. NWM is something I am passionate about. It literally excites me to see other girls and women rise up and take their place of calling and take it seriously for nothing BUT His glory.
  • We live in such a self-absorbed generation where people only seem to be interested in what benefits them.

I felt it was really important to go over the NWM guiding principle which goes in line with the NWM life verse from Matthew 5:14-16 from the MSG translation:

“ To be a shining light to the world around us for His glory.”

And this is what I hope every girl or woman who comes through NWM becomes. My hope is that every single meeting, we will leave that bit more inspired and encouraged to do exactly as God is calling each of us to.

eat together

So I am majorly excited for our next meeting this Saturday at my house in Greenhithe. We are going to be doing something a little different with a cook out! Each girl will be bringing something that they have either prepared themselves or even just bought! Either way, I believe it’s going to be a fun night.

This week’s message is titled “ EYE HART U!” If you haven’t guessed already then we will be discussing RELATIONSHIPS starting with being single, S.E.X.Y (I guarantee you will never be able to guess what this stands for!) And focused!

why am i sngle

I will also be sharing my own (un) successful single story so be sure to arrive early at 6:30pm! It’s going to a fun night so be sure to invite others.

Don’t forget, if you would like to come along, then email me: Adenikenwm@gmail.com.

Be sure to check back on Monday for the next meeting round up xxx

excited homer

A Bitter Pill to Swallow…

Is it thursday already? It only feels like it was Chtristmas yesterday and here we are, about to embark on the 1st day of the month of AUGUST!

Okay so this has nothing to do with what i am talking about today but hey ho! It struck how fast time was passing by because i had told a friend I would be posting this blog on monday evening and here we are 4 days later and its only just being done. Oh well, better late than never right?

Now Jesus turned to address his disciples, along with the crowd that had gathered with them. “The religious scholars and Pharisees are competent teachers in God’s Law. You won’t go wrong in following their teachings on Moses. But be careful about following them. They talk a good line, but they don’t live it. They don’t take it into their hearts and live it out in their behavior. It’s all spit-and-polish veneer. (Matthew 23:1-3 MSG)

So on Sunday afternoon, i decided to do something that is really only ever acceptable for people under the age of 3; I took a nap! When i did finally wake up 2 HOURS LATER, I immediately felt as though I NEEDED to read Matthew 23. Its not a chapter I’m familiar with but i read on anyway wondering what i would learn.

Have you ever found yourself reading the Bible and feeling as though you “just got TOLD”? Because thats how I felt. But not in a way where I felt condemed, it was more of a conviction than anything.

Now Jesus turned to address his disciples, along with the crowd that had gathered with them. “The religion scholars and Pharisees are competent teachers in God’s Law. You won’t go wrong in following their teachings on Moses. But be careful about following them. They talk a good line, but they don’t live it. They don’t take it into their hearts and live it out in their behavior. It’s all spit-and-polish veneer. (Matthew 23:1-3 MSG)

As i read this verse, i was reminded of what God doesnt want or do in any of His children. God doesnt do “surface level- clean!

What is that?

“Surface level clean” is a term I came up with to describe my own level of cleanliness. You see, I like to tidy up in a way so that if you look on the surface, things APPEAR clean. So for example, I will sweep the living room floor but I will NOT move the chairs forward to get a good sweep of the things that have gathered underneath perhaps over the last few days, weeks or even months. Yikes!
I say “Yikes” because I KNOW the crap that’s accumulated when we live “surface level clean”. We become false people so preoccupied with what’s happening on the outside that we forget to nurture the inside that will eventually spew up all over the outside anyway! And usually at the most unpredictable and inconvenient time.

Yikes!

Living “surface level clean” is the same as living a “spit and polish veneer” type of life. It’s far from God’s best because it keeps us prone to hypocrisy. Why? Because we are so busy trying to portray an image far from the state and condition of our hearts so we start to judge others who perhaps don’t reflect our ideal or the image we are desperate to portray.

Is it a bit harsh to say to say that as generation we have become more concerned with what people think of us that  we portray an image to the world around us that is in no way consistant with who we areally are? We talk a good talk but when it comes down to it, the words we speak are  nothing but smoke and mirrors.

We don’t love as we ought to love, serve out of humility or give with a grateful heart. Instead, we have teachers more concerned with number of followers they have instead of being concerned with souls of those they lead regardless of if it’s 5 or 500.

Don’t get me started on the faithful who serve week in week out at church. They will put on their best Sunday smile with the hope of the “right” person noticing them and spotting their “leadership potential.”  And if that doesn’t happen soon enough, then they are off to the next church that WILL notice their leadership qualities and make the “right choice.”
And let’s not forget the social preachers, they love you enough to spit you a nasty comment on Instagram but that’s okay because it’s laced in scripture. Their names may be @daughterofaking but their lives spell @childofs****. But hey, that’s okay right?

No. It’s not. It’s really not.

I have to put my hands up and say, this verse has smacked me right in the face and I am glad it did. God didn’t save any of us so we can live a false life. We were saved for a purpose. That our lives might be a reflection of Him and that He would use us as a vessel to bring His other sons and daughters HOME.

That will not happen if we are too busy living “surface level clean”. That will not happen if our words do not match our posts and that certainly will not happen if we are more concerned with our social status than we are the souls of others. We need to live passionately obsessed with the Kingdom. Living in a way that HIS will be done.

So I determine THIS day, I want to live as a vessel for God. I want to live as One who KNOWS the King and not just of Him. I’m done with surface level living. I want real intimacy that stretches so far and so wide, that it pours onto the outside of me and overflows to those that I meet. So no more spit and polish antiques for me!

I’d better go sweep under those chairs hey…

homer tidying up

A Lesson well and truly learnt…

More people would learn from their mistakes if they weren’t so busy denying them.
– Harold J Smith

So last week, I planned to blog what i believed to have been a brutally honest post that may have made a few stomachs turn. However, my computer had other ideas and this wasnt to be the case. But i felt this post was too important not to share. So this weeks blog is last weeks mess up that almost wasnt! Hopefully, it will make more sense than my opening lines. Have a great week and enjoy the following lines. xxx

Tuesday 8th July 2014

I think I almost died yesterday! Or at least it FELT like I was dying! You see, I over, over,over indulged. I had a take away for lunch dinner and dessert. I am not even going to go into detail about any of the take aways because right now, I don’t think my stomach could take it.

The way i am feeling has forced me to ask myself, “what example am I setting for the children?” when i choose to stuff my face with the very things i tell them are unhealthy. Just yesterday, my son told me his favourite drink was COKE! Please note, I have NEVER given my children coke or any other fizzy drink, but they have watched mummy and daddy drink it on several occasions and you know how it goes.

fat guy

I have to be real with myself. I let myself down when I allowed the dictates of the flesh or should i say the sweet smell of freshly fried chips and a greased infused fish, to rule. No one held a gun to my head and said EAT OR YOU DIE!! And now my tummy is suffering for it. And so is my husbands!

For to me, living means living for Christ, and dying is even better. (‭Philippians‬ ‭1‬:‭21‬ NLT)

I genuinely feel as though my insides are turning inside out. And now to the person who has ever said (like myself) “I don’t drink because I am a Christian, do you over eat? Because if you do, in my opinion it’s as bad and just as dangerous as binge drinking! Yep, I said it, shoot me if you like. But the truth is, if I were to eat like this EVERYDAY, I am no better than the person who drinks everyday.

If you thought that over eating only lead to a bit of weight gain, then think again. Here are some of the other things a scone here and there will do to you over time;

  • Weight gain, often leading to obesity (Well duhh!)
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Chronic kidney problems or kidney failure
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Diabetes
  • Stroke
  • Rapid ageing
  • Infertility or Complications during pregnancy

Going through that list is a scary thought to even consider and it’s not the way or anybody wants to live. One of my greatest reasons for not only wanting to lose weight but to get fit is my children. I don’t want them to go through some of the same things I am going through. I want them to have a healthy relationship with food and not one that involves COKE!! If I want to be an example to anybody in this life, it’s starts by being one to my children. It starts by living out what I speak about. And that means living wholeheartedly for Christ. He set aside everything just so I could live and NOT so I could waste the length of my days by overindulging. For me, living and REAL living IS living for Christ, acknowledging Him every step of the way, appreciating every gift that came with the cross and DYING to “self” DAILY.

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I believe that’s the best way for me to live in the presence of my children with the hope that they would one day live that way for their children. I have learnt a valuable lesson as a result of yesterday. And I am not ashamed to admit, I am suffering the consequences of my greed today. And so is my toilet!

sick homer

Aside

Religion IS dead…

So last week, myself and some other great ladies got together to have our fortnightly women’s only bible study, NWM. It tends to be one of the highlights of my week when we are able to gather together to discuss ways in which we can better represent the ONE name that can change any situation, circumstance or problem; JESUS. During Friday’s meeting, we were looking at some of the ways we sometimes, without realising it, allow religion to take the place of real and authentic relationship. And as a result, we end up frustrated, depleted and not to mention, fruitless.

jesus is my saviour I don’t know about you, but I have found myself trying to “work” my way into God’s good books. I would get so annoyed simply because rather than asking God what He required of me, I would go around and round in circles doing what I thought He wanted me to. More than anything, God just requires a willing spirit. More than the 40 day fasts, the over night vigils or any other spiritual box we believe requires a tick, God just wants us to be PRESENT.

So often, we run out of steam pursuing the dreams and the visions that God has placed on the inside of us because rather than going to Him, we choose to map out our own plan and path and that usually takes us in the opposite direction required to reach the perfect destination. Just ask the Israelites!! They would, if they could, tell you how silly they must have felt to allow an 11 day journey to take 40 years!

need help There are so many things that take us off course. But there is ONE way to remain on the right track: HIS WAY. The good thing about His way is that it doesn’t require much. Below are just a few of the things we discussed at Friday’s meeting. Have a read and I hope it helps.

 

Pause: If we don’t stop and PAUSE every now and then to breath in what God has to say, we miss out. Practically applying this, why not daily take out a moment to BREATH as you meditate on the goodness of God. Think about His faithfulness during a recent time of anxiety or hardship. As you do this, let it be the refueling you need for the day ahead. A great time to do this would deffo’ be in the morning!

need direction

Crave: We were created to crave but because we are so busy craving after ALL things but God, we end up frustrated wondering why these pursuits have not filled that void in our souls. To crave simply means to have a strong desire for something. What are your strongest desires? If it isn’t Him, that may be the answer to your frustration!

Quit: I know, this sounds like an oxymoron to making progress, but I think sometimes we just need to quit what we are doing in order to let HIM do what He needs to do. When I say quit, I mean, QUIT trying to work your way in to heaven. If God required us to work our way in to righteousness, then what would be the difference between our faith and any false religion out there? Christianity is not a religion. It’s FAITH. It’s a lifestyle.  And it’s the way of LIVING. Religion is not alive and active. Religion represents the separation between man and God but our Faith in Christ represents the reconciliation between God and Mankind.

relax

Let go of every false hope that religion provides and embrace God’s way. Grace was a gift given that could never be earned. Rest in it!

sleeping homer

 

How you LIVE is how you LOVE…

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Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me!

Wasn’t that the biggest lie we told in primary school? Words DO hurt and they cut deep. Maybe it’s that family member whose job it is to tell you how fat you’ve got every time you come around? Or perhaps it’s that “all up in your business” co- worker who cannot find it in themselves to say something nice about you. Or maybe it’s a barrage of words spoken by a “friend” that never makes you feel good about yourself?

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What’s the best thing you can do? Let them all slide off! Yep! Don’t slap nobody upside the head or spit venom back just to make yourself better because you wont! You have to learn to let the negative and often times hurtful comments of others slide off like the water off a ducks back. Why? Because you must, like my mother likes to say, “remember the child of who you are.”

 

Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will. – 2 timothy 2:23-26

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As a Christ follower, its very important for me to remember the One of whom I say I am connected to. The bible describes all Christ followers as His ambassadors, which makes us representatives of Him. If this were the case, why should I, or any Christ follower, change the way we act because of others? We need to be able to treat people with dignity and respect even when they don’t deserve it, because that’s exactly what God did for us and its our turn to demonstrate that same type of unfailing love to others.

This is the part where I would roll my eyes and tell you to “shut up” simply because there are some rude, ignorant and not to mention testing people! I get it ALL. But the thing is, not everybody will get to hear the sermon you preach or read the Bible you speak of. But what they will have is a front row seat to your LIFE. What does yours represent? 

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What you believe and whom you follow will impact the way you treat others. It will impact the things you say and the way you live. It will also impact the way you respond to some of the not so great words others speak of or to you.

Let it be said that you always represented Him in the best way you could, even to those who don’t yet know Him.

Hope helps Someone…x

P.S: NWM is happening this friday in Thamesmead, London at 7:30PM, so if you or anyone is interested in coming along then send me an email: adenike.sholagbade@gmail.com. I would love to have you xxx

Britain Next top Model… or NAW…

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I discovered something profound this weekend. I am not so perfect after all. Duhh!

For a while, I have seriously believed that I am the keeper and the saviour of my marriage when the truth is, I am not! Christ is. Christ did me and other Christians alike, a huge favour. He modelled to us the character and the traits we should emulate in order to enjoy marriages and friendships that produce good, healthy and wholesome fruit.

ImageHad I not have been listening to Andy Stanley this weekend, maybe I wouldn’t have noticed the painfully obvious; if I want something achieved in my home or at work, I must be willing to model it. That’s what Jesus did and continues to do. If I am this big Jesus follower, as I like to declare and publicise, then it starts by being a Jesus Follower and not just saying I am one. It begins and ends with a heart set on living out as Jesus advised us to.

“Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them. Add up God’s Law and Prophets and this is what you get. – Matthew 7:12 MSG

 It’s very easy for someone to confuse living as Christ as someone who religiously sticks to the rules, doesn’t sin, ticks all the right boxes, fasts 40 days and 40 nights and doesn’t drink, smoke or have sex…EVER! That’s not the message of Christ to the world. His message was demonstrated in his character. Though He was King, He served. Though he had it all and needed nothing, He gave the very best to a world that deserved nothing.

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 Jesus is the perfect model for US. In marriage, friendship, and authority and in all things, He is a model and example for us. He modeled for us exactly what we are to do in order to live a purpose filled life. One that He died that we might receive.

I confess I can be a great big nag at times. I want things done and I want them done now. But I have to admit that the more I read about the importance of putting others first, I realize that this is something I have spoken more of than I have really practiced. Oops!

I cannot expect my husband to do what I am not willing to do and then nag him for not doing it! Isn’t that just hypocrisy? But that’s what so many of us do. We want to be served, but we will not first serve. We want to be loved but yet we refuse to love. We beg for forgiveness but harbor it as though it wasn’t given freely to us.

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I don’t want to live like that anymore. I don’t want to be so focused on my own needs that I forget the needs of others especially my husband (you are a total babe by the way!). It’s a pretty simple way to live as well. There’s no hard method to follow, just do unto others, as you would like done on to you. What you feel you cannot do, God is so gracious and merciful that he has provided us with the grace to cover our areas of weakness. What we are not able to do just yet, love fully and give freely, forgive easily, His grace is sufficient enough to cover. All it requires is a heart willing and ready to go all in.

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Just like Jesus, I need to MODEL what I desire. I need to be willing to model what He has called me to be to those in my sphere of contact and influence. And my life shouldn’t be about giving to get either. It should be about giving because He gave. Jesus put His need ahead of my own when he didn’t need to. So I want to do just that this week and every week. Who knows the fruit to come as a result of this change of mindset that I pray will affect my marriage and all other relationships for the better and Glory of God.

xxx

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