WALKING THE TALK

Chloe’s Questions

Mummy, Chloe said,
Why do lines form on your forehead
With a twinkle in her eye, Mummy replied
It shows how many times I’ve gone to bed

Mummy, Chloe said,
If God is real why can’t we see Him
Mummy thought a minute and then replied
He’s like the wind, we experience Him

Ex-peri-en-ce? Said Chloe,
Yes my dear, He wakes us up each morning
And we can see the pretty flowers opening
We can hear the birds singing and to one another calling

Remember Chloe,
in autumn when the wind blows hard
At times its whistles as it rushes through the trees
Fallen leaves brown and yellow filling our backyard
We rake and rake, at times bending on our knees

Ah, said Chloe, about this invisible God
Does He really make the moon and stars to shine at night
With a peaceful smile Mummy gave a nod
Yes, she said and the sun at noonday to shine so bright

God is a Father to us
He gives us food to eat and clothes to wear
He keeps us safe, even when we ride the bus
He is always near because He is everywhere

Mummy, Chloe said,
Why is God in  heaven is he dead?
No, no Mummy said, God is alive and well
He answers my prayers so I can surely tell

Mummy, Chloe said,
My teacher said that Jesus died for us
And, if we want to go to heaven and see Him,
Then accepting Him as our Saviour is a must.

Mummy stood and beamed with pride,
Her happiness distinctly unable to hide.
How right your teacher is dear Chloe,O Yes,
Only Jesus gives us Salvation and eternal rest!

 

God bless, LolaA

 

Obedience

Plain and simple is your Word
To fathom it I needn’t be a nerd

Lord your Word help me to understand;
Lord for your Word may I be willing to make a stand

Obedience you said above sacrifice
Total obedience to your Word, not being nice

Sacrifice is nice but obedience is better
When I obey you I become a trend setter

Obedience to you is my desire
Obedience is what you require

God, my Father to you is due obedience
And with such deference comes a light hearted conscience

Father great is the joy of obeying your Word, Knowing that I’m right with you and my prayers will be heard

Lord your beautiful in every situation
Obeying you’re your Word leads to a desirable destination

Obedience is doing the Godly thing
When it is neither the happening nor in-thing

For me obedience is not an act of compulsion,  But demonstrating love of an immense proportion

Obeying the Father and doing right
Uplifts a nation and takes us to a mighty height

Disobedience, rejecting Jesus and sin
Lands us in hell the ultimate bin

Brothers and Sisters let’s turn around and walk in light
Embracing Jesus who is awesome in power and might!

My Saviour’s love is all I need
Awesome love that teaches me His voice to heed.

2016 we welcome you with a cheer
Love, joy, hope, success and victory all are here!!!

 


 

 

 

Generation J

We hear of generation X, generation Y and generation Z
But the more we look the less we see

“Move with the times”, I hear them say
Be liberated, move ahead, don’t be stuck in yesterday!

They think they know it all, have it all, but I’m proud to say,
I know my generation and I proud of it, its generation J

I’m not confused about where I stand
I vote for Jesus to Him I lift my hand

His Word is true and quite infallible
Plain to read and easily discernible.

Some say the bible is outdated
That we need to move on and be liberated

I say His Word is more current than tomorrow
Without it we’ll all be doomed to an eternity of sorrow

The Word of God isn’t dead, it’s alive its living
The Word of God is a gift to us, a gift that keeps on giving.

It’s a privilege to live according to the awesome Word
And when we do we sparkle, we stand out from the herd.

I urge you my brother, my sister, join the ‘in’ group
The happy people, the Jesus people, don’t be left out of the loop!

 

 

Bless You

LolaA

 

Maybe I’ll go to town tomorrow

Maybe I’ll get my hair done

Maybe I’ll go to university to study to become a doctor, or maybe a pharmacist

Or maybe I’ll go to university and read law or maybe I’ll become a journalist or a newscaster

Or… maybe I’ll become a travelling blogger, blog my way around the world seeing some great sights in the process.

Maybe, maybe, MAYBE……

There seems to be a whole lot of choice in life and with that choice comes uncertainty. So often we are not sure of the next step in life and where that next step may take us.

There are some of us, of course, who grow up dreaming of becoming doctors, lawyers or astronauts and successfully fulfil that dream in record time. Some of us have many twists and turns but eventually fulfil our life’s dreams. For some of us ‘life’ happens along the way and we have to take a detour and are never able to fulfil that initial dream, but maybe we fulfil another dream which could even be a better one.

Some of us are not even sure of our dreams or maybe our dreams are a bit like shifting sand, constantly moving. Or maybe after attaining our dream job/role we realise it’s not the ‘dream’ after all and we seek out another dream.

At times the opportunity to fulfil our dreams does not come our way, we have to push them aside and get on with the important task of living or even just existing from day-to-day.

In the topsy turvy and mucky waters of life where can we find stability?

I’ve heard it said that there are no certainties in this life but is that true? Are we supposed to just keep on swimming in these waters of life and hope that someday, somewhere we’ll reach terra firma?

On reflection I don’t think so. There is someone out there who can give us all the certainties and all the guarantees we need. Not just a five year warranty, not even a lifetime warranty, no, He can give us a warranty that will last the whole of eternity. How great is that!

His name is God, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

He doesn’t just know our past or our present; He has our future in the palm of His hands. If only we can trust Him, allow Him to have His way, allow Him to direct our paths and to lead us, then we can be absolutely sure of amazing success.

When Abraham was seventy-five years old, Our Father promised to make him the father of many nations even though he was childless at the time. (Genesis 12)

Did God bring that dream to pass, was it fulfilled? Dearest one if God gives you a dream, if He makes you a promise, gives you a Word, you can take it to any bank in this world and it will be honoured. God is watching over His Word to fulfil it. It may take a day, a week, a month, a year, seven years or even twenty-five years, but surely it will definitely come to pass, it will be fulfilled. The world may laugh, they may say you are past child bearing age, or your body is old and weak. They may say university is for the young or running marathons is for the youthful. God says with Him all things are possible, that is all things, all things!

The Father God gives us certainty and stability in this world and that stability is in His Word and His promises to us.

What He requires of us is to ravish the scriptures, spend time in His Word, the bible, and know what He is saying to us. He will lead us step but step if we allow Him, and if we are walking in step with Jesus we can never miss our way!

From time to time our skies may seem overcast, the sun of our lives hidden and the wind raging as the darkness of the clouds deepens. But like Elijah’s servant we need to take another look (1Kings 18:43). We need to peer through the lens of Our Saviour, Jesus. Astonishingly His Word will brighten the horizon and as we focus our gaze we will observe that actually the clouds are breaking up. Not only is there a silver lining but the wind has morphed into a gentle breeze and the sun peeks out from behind the clouds and begins to glow as it bows to its superior the Son of the Most High God.

The day becomes fresh and our lives seem like new as we place our hope, our dreams, our lives in the hands of Him who never sleeps nor slumbers. Our faith is in Him who is the embodiment of certainty, Jesus the Christ!

“The everlasting God is a refuge, and underneath you are his eternal arms… “
Deuteronomy 33:27

Sunrise

If Love Was a Person…

If love was a person he’d be patient, kind and caring
If love was a person she’d be humble, patient and honest
If love was a person he’d share he’s food with the hungry, he’s time with the helpless and himself with the lonely.

If love was a person he’d be gentle, pleasant and friendly
If love was a person she’d be hardworking, committed and loyal
If love was a person he’d be protective, trusting and delightful.

If love was a person he wouldn’t be envious, boastful or proud
If love was a person she wouldn’t dishonour others, be selfish or keep record of wrongs
If love was a person he wouldn’t be domineering, overbearing or easily angered.

If love was a person he’d share his food with the hungry, his time with the helpless and himself with the lonely
If love was a person she’d help the blind man to cross the road and the old lady with her shopping
If love was a person he’d stand up for the truth, stand up for the downtrodden and stand up for what is right.

If love was a person he’d be a friend to the friendless, a brother to the brotherless and a father to the fatherless
If love was a person she’d be a patient teacher to the unschooled, a sister to the sisterless and a mother to the motherless

The good news is Love is a person! God is Love and Jesus Christ Our Saviour is the embodiment, the totally of that Love.

If you’re looking for love today embrace Jesus, His willing, able and waiting to be the greatest love of your life.
LolaA

Hearts

 

CHRISTMAS

Christmas 

 What is Christmas?

It seems for a lot of us Christmas has become a stressful time. This is probably due to the fact that in order to serve their own fancies the ‘world’ has commercialised Christmas. This of course serves dual purposes, retailers of all shapes and sizes and of all types of merchandise are able to sell their goods and hopefully improve the bottom line. For example the ‘Black Friday’ sales when the books of retailers are supposed to have moved from red to black, black of course means they are now making a profit. The second purpose is that in all the hullaballoo, pandemonium and last minute panic the true meaning of Christmas is lost.

If there is one secret the ‘god of this world’ doesn’t want people in on then it’s the true meaning of Christmas.

Christmas means Christ’s Mass a time when we celebrate the birth of our Saviour, Jesus Christ. ‘Mass’ can be defined as the public celebration of the Eucharist in the Roman Catholic Church and some Protestant churches. The Eucharist being the Holy Communion. The taking of bread and wine just as Jesus did with His disciples when He celebrated the Passover with them at the Last Supper and instructed us to do likewise in remembrance of Him. So Christmas is supposed to be all about Christ but unfortunately we have majored so much on the minor that we so often leave the major completely out of the equation.

Are We Leaving Christ Out of Christmas?

Cities, towns and even villages have big ceremonies to turn on the Christmas lights yet they totally ignore Jesus who is the Light of the world (John 8:12).

In a bid to be politically correct cards are sent with the words ‘seasons greetings’ and recipients struggle to determine whether Summer, Spring, Autumn or Winter is meant, it probably depends on which hemisphere the recipient lives in. Would it not be so much easier to celebrate and reference Jesus as the reason for the season of goodwill?

For many, especially children, Christmas is all about the presents, the gifts they will get and be able to unwrap on Christmas day. In the mayhem and excitement the greatest gift of all time is often put on a back bench. Parents, uncles, aunties, sisters and brothers in a bid to show their love stretch themselves, their resources, as they endeavour to get the perfect gifts, the things that are really wanted. But the Father God knowing what we really need demonstrated His love for us by giving us the greatest gift of all time, Jesus our Saviour, who came to take our place and die so that we will not have to experience eternal death.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life”. (John 3:16 NIV)

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8 NIV)

God’s gift to us is completely free, it has been signed sealed and delivered to us in the most beautiful of packages and it always arrives right on time, the precise moment we decide to receive Jesus as Lord and Saviour.

Feeding The Real US

Over the festive period we all have a tendency to gobble down every delicacy in sight, yours truly included. The excuse is the New Year will soon be here and we’ll get to make New Year Resolutions, forgetting of course that we’re likely to break those resolutions just as fast as we make them. So we feed our bodies all well and good, but what about our soul, yes our soul! Man, that is human beings, are spirit beings, believe it or not the real you and me are the spirits that live on the inside of us, we have a soul and we live in a body. Our bodies need to be taken care of but they are just the vessel, the container, the ‘tin’ so to say. Whilst the tin needs to be spick and span it is even more important that the contents are above board. Our souls, which consist of our will, our minds and our emotions, need to be fed. The food is the ‘Word of God’, the scriptures. As we eat our share and more of turkey, stuffing and the trimmings, as we indulge on Christmas cake, pudding and finger foods we should not forget or neglect to make sure our souls also get in on the action. By reading, studying and meditating on the Word of God we nourish our souls, enabling our minds and will to align themselves with what the Lord would have us do.

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. (Romans 12:2 NASB)

Let It Be All About Christ

Christmas is a wonderful time, a time most of us look forward to and build up towards. We are able to relax, let our hair down (if we have any) and generally have a good time. I urge you this Christmas time and as we look forward to a wonderful 2015 may we allow Christmas to be all about Christ! May we put Him first in all our doings and may we decide that not only is He the reason for the season but indeed He is the reason for our being.

I wish you a wonderful Christ filled and Christ centred and truly fabulous 2015

LolaA x

PULLING ON OUR BOOTS!

 

Hurray! The Cold War is Over!

In 1989 the Berlin Wall, the wall between East and West Germany came down and the country was re-united as just Germany. And on December 26, 1991 the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) ceased to exist, the independence of the twelve republics of the Soviet Union was acknowledged.

The ‘Cold War’ was over! Arsenals could be dis-mantled, armies down-sized. The world had become a safer place, or so it seemed. The world was becoming a global village, what was there to fight about? The conflict between Israel and Palestine reared its head from time to time but we were used to it and ‘accepted’ it as part of our modern world. Peace talks for the region came and went, any new American President had a duty to host some talks and show solidarity to the ‘cause’, but biblical scholars are well aware peace in the region will be elusive until Jesus comes.

So world war three having been averted we all got on with our ‘peaceful’ lives.

Another Breeze is Blowing

Unfortunately we were wrong. There have been many battles fought since the end of World War II, e.g. the Bosnian Genocide of 1995, but for those of us who were not affected we continued our lives in blissful ignorance. Out of sight was out of mind, a few sad faces when the news was broadcast and we saw what was happening thousands of miles away from us and then back to normal.

However unbeknown to the vast majority of us a great catastrophic undercurrent has been brewing in our domain, wherever in the world that domain may be

The proponents of this ‘world war three’ as I like to call it have been bringing this war to us in drips and drops, the flattening of the twin towers, a bomb at the Boston marathon or havoc on the London transport system. We shed our tears, rained a lot of words on how to deal with terrorists and their actions, killed Osmar Bin Ladin and then got on with our lives.

In 2014 we are still ‘getting on with our lives’, but the calm seems to be very uneasy; it feels like there’s a storm gathering steam, a fierce storm.

There’s a new kid on the block who wants to take over the world, his name is Islam.

Now I know the drill, majority of Moslems are peace loving and wouldn’t hurt a fly, they just want to serve their God and get on with life like the rest of us, only a ‘small’ segment have ulterior motives.

That is exactly the problem, the small segment, is no longer small, it’s growing in leaps and bounds and it’s on a mission, a mission that they are more than prepared to give their lives for.

As a present day citizen of the world I’m sure you have heard of the term ‘Jihad’ which means holy struggle or holy war. And is Jihad in the Qur’ran, the holy book and most important authority of Islam, my research says it is. I suppose the next question is, so what does the Qur’ran say about Jihad? Well that’s the slightly difficult part. As is found in many if not all religions, people often interpret their holy book as best serves their purpose. I mean don’t get me started on the Bible, even the devil quotes it (or should I say misquotes it) to serve his purpose.

In my search for answers about Jihad I came across an article by Matt Slick on the CARM (Christian Apologetics & Research Ministry) website  http://carm.org/religious-movements/islam/jihad-holy-struggle-or-holy-war

He says:

“Jihad has been interpreted by Muslims in different ways. The Muslim sect of the Kharijites has elevated Jihad to one of the Five Pillars of Islam–making it Six Pillars. This kind of belief is seen in the extremist Muslim groups we call terrorists. They use the concept of Jihad as a justification for killing anyone who isn’t a Muslim. However, most Muslims disagree with this extremist position of some Muslims and advocate peace. These Muslims view Jihad as a spiritual struggle against evil in a metaphorical sense.

For the most part, there is the Greater and Lesser Jihad. The Greater Jihad is the internal spiritual struggle of the Muslim toward submission to Allah. The Lesser Jihad is Holy War against non-Muslims based on principle of belief. It is this latter that has caused the most concern among Westerners. Is that concern warranted? Many think so”.

I would want to assume that most right thinking people would find it inconceivable that a religion would advocate killing fellow human beings just because their beliefs are different. However what we think is not important it is what is on the ground that matters. Just last month (September 2014) we heard of Christians and other minority faiths being persecuted and killed in Iraq because they refused to embrace Islam.

Right from its inception the followers of Islam have used force to spread their message, if history is to be believed even Prophet Mohammed was not an exception as he frequently used force, or the threat of it, to unify the nomadic tribes of the Arabian Peninsula.

Facts seem to be stacking up that the aim of many Muslims is that Islam should dominate the world. Indeed during one BBC broadcast regarding ISIS I saw someone holding a banner with those very words ‘Islam will dominate the world’. From where I’m standing it does seem to me that that agenda is firmly on the table.

Turkey

Let’s look at Turkey as a country of interest. According to Wikipedia:

“Turkey is a contiguous transcontinental parliamentary republic, with its smaller part in Southeastern Europe and its larger part in Western Asia (i.e. the Balkans and Anatolia, respectively). Turkey is bordered by eight countries: Bulgaria to the northwest; Greece to the west; Georgia to the northeast; Armenia, Iran and the Azerbaijani exclave of Nakhchivan to the east; and Iraq and Syria to the southeast. The Mediterranean Sea is to the south; the Aegean Sea to the west; and the Black Sea to the north. The Sea of Marmara, the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles (which together form the Turkish Straits) demarcate the boundary between Thrace and Anatolia; they also separate Europe and Asia. Turkey’s location at the crossroads of Europe and Asia makes it a country of significant geostrategic importance”.

If your English is anything like mine I think what they were trying to say is that Turkey is a large mass of land that is partly in Europe and partly in Asia (or the Middle East if you like).
In 2011 the country’s population was said to be 74.7 million people, the largest city in Turkey, Istanbul, is also the largest city in Europe in population, and the third-largest city in Europe in terms of size. Turkey has the world’s 15th largest GDP, and I know I see a lot of ‘made in Turkey’ labels on my clothes so I’m going to assume they’re not doing badly.

Turkey is a secular state with no official state religion; the Turkish Constitution provides for freedom of religion and conscience. It just so happens that Islam is the dominant religion of Turkey with 99.8% of the population being registered as Muslim.

Now why did I start talking about Turkey? It’s because a lot of early church history following Pentecost took place in Turkey. Indeed Turkey is where the church first thrived. Apostle Paul was born in Tarsus, in what is now Turkey. Timothy was from Lystra, not far from Tarsus. Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bythinia are all in present day Turkey.

Paul was not only born and raised in Turkey, but most of his ministry took place in Turkey! With the exception of Salamis and Pathos (in Cyprus), all the places Paul visited on his first missionary journey were in Turkey (Perge, Antioch in Pisidia, Iconium, Lystra, Derbe and Attalia). Most of his second and third missionary journeys were also in Turkey.

According to reliable traditions, the Apostle John left Jerusalem to become the Bishop of Ephesus. In obedience to Christ’s command, he took Mary, the mother of Jesus with him and cared for her until her death. John was later banned to exile on the Turkish Island of Patmos. It was here that he had a vision and wrote the book of Revelation. We can thus conclude that a major portion of the New Testament was either written to Christians in Turkey or written on Turkish soil.

The seven churches to which letters were written in Revelation chapters 2 and 3 were all in modern day Turkey.

Yes, Turkey was once a bastion of Christianity and sent out missionaries to evangelise a large part of Eastern Europe.

Sadly, very sadly, today finding a Christian in Turkey may just be likened to finding a needle in a haystack, it’s there somewhere, just don’t ask where exactly.

So what happened, what happened to Turkey, that wonderful place that saw the likes of Paul the Apostle, John, Timothy and Mary the mother of our Saviour amongst others?

Yea, you got it Jihad happened!

By the middle of the fifth century, Mohammed’s followers had conquered much of Turkey including the present day capital, Ankara. They also laid a four year siege on Constantinople (named after Emperor Constantine) 654-658, but were unable to take the city until 1453. The city’s name was then changed to Istanbul.

It does seem that the preferred modus operandi of Islam is to take no prisoners, you either join them or you cease to exist, as a result, Christianity has all but ceased to exist in Turkey today.

Now it’s all too easy for us to put our feet up, sigh and wonder out loud about what really happened to the Christian Turks of yonder years and in our nonchalance proclaim that it can’t happen in our town, city or country. Even though the Bible very clearly tells us that ‘…let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall’ (1 Corinthians 10 verse 12).

And that will be exactly where the enemy wants us. Living our lives as per normal, attending church services and the odd prayer meeting. Being ‘good’ Christians as we pay our tithes and give offerings on a regular basis, even giving to charity and supporting missions. We would have loved to go to the mission field ourselves but when we were younger we didn’t have the means and now we don’t have the time. I mean, we have to provide for our families right? The Word of God does say that he who doesn’t provide for his family is worse than an infidel, yes that word is in the bible (1 Timothy 5:8).

Well that’s the bad news, but I assure you there is good news. The good news is that we can go to the mission field, the mission field that is the house next door, the mission field down the road and in our town centres. There’s a mission field in our place of work, our college, our gym and our local park and by jolly do we need to be on a mission.

We live in perilous times, check the news on your smart phone if you don’t believe me; the days of being neutral or undecided are over. The fence has been pulled down and thrown onto the rubbish heap so you can’t sit on it, you are either for or you are against. If we don’t stand up for what we believe then we might just go the way of the fence.

An Atypical War

This is war. But it’s not your typical war, it’s a war where one side has been assured of victory, but and this is a very big ‘but’, inasmuch as the Lord’s side has been given the winning crowns it is up to each of us individually to fight the battles we have been given for the sake of the Kingdom.

These are not physical battles “for the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds…” (2 Corinthians 10 verse 4) and we know that “…we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (Ephesians 6 verse 12)

I’m sure you have heard of how the Western world is bombing ISIS (the so called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) in a bid to halt their onslaught of terror. Thankfully we are wise enough to know that this isn’t a Middle East problem and ISIS is not hoping to be contained within Iraq and Syria and bordering states no they have a very wide vision. However the West have so far refused to put ‘boots on the ground’ as it is called, i.e. no foot soldiers, even though many seem to agree that ISIS cannot be defeated without foot soldiers.

I strongly believe that we need to take the offensive in this battle wherever we are in the world. We need to get our boots, the ones that are an embodiment of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and we need to pull them on and do up our laces (Ephesians 6:15). Then we need to go out there, everywhere and preach the gospel as if our life depends on it, because it does!

All historic wars have depended on armies and today’s wars are no different. Armies need recruits, people fit and able to wage war on their behalf, we need to go out there and conscript people into the Lord’s army, He’s depending on us.

Before the enemy gets to the young men and women who live round the corner and gives them visions of trophies in ‘paradise’, and human heads and AK45’s in this world we need to tell them the Truth. Let them know where paradise really is and The Way, the only way that leads there. Jesus is depending on us to carry this message.

Peradventure we won’t do it for ourselves, or our country or our church, let’s do it for our children, our grandchildren, our nieces and nephews and all those coming after us. I’m sure you know someone who you are hoping to leave behind when you go to the great beyond, think of that individual, what legacy do you want to leave them, what type of country do you want them to live in. Take a second and think if you neglect to preach the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ today and your country goes the way of Turkey (it might seem impossible but it’s not), and the next generations are forced to become Moslems will you see your offspring in Heaven?

Now it may not matter to you, that’s fine, you’ll have this massive mansion in heaven and no one to share it with:).

But if you want to see your children’s children not just in this life but in the hereafter then now is the time to pull on those boots and get moving!

Hoping to see you down town preaching the Gospel, it’s one weapon that we have and that we can use freely:):)

LolaA

 

 

 

 

 

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