A very Merry Christmas 2019 and
A blessed New Year 2020.
(December 25th 2019)
"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. “And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. “(Isaiah 9:6)
A Merry Christmas with spiritual blessings that flow from the birth of Christ Jesus, our Saviour.
Wishing everyone a Blessed New Year 2020 of :
* Singing the praises of the glory of God’s abundance grace that brought us from fallen to risen, from lost to found and from slave to freedom.
* Expressing profound gratitude for the Lord of hosts’ infinite love manifested on the Cross of Calvary.
* Coming of all those in darkness into light, of their hearing God’s call, of their connecting to Jesus, of their believing in Him and receiving salvation.
* Fortifying our trust, our faith in God, also our relationship with Immanuel – God with us.
Throughout this New Year 2020, May Jehovah-Tsid-Kenu, our God bless everyone with Hope, Peace, Protection, Health, Long-life and Prosperity. May we continue to dwell in the immense riches of His love. In Jesus name. Amen.
“Rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the Lord. And many nations shall be joined to the Lord in that day and shall be my people: and I will dwell in the midst of thee, and thou shalt know that the Lord of hosts hath sent me unto thee.” Zechariah 2:10 - 11
Testimony of a Lost and Found Child
September 16th 2018
I wish to thank you all for your prayer. May God continue to shower His blessings on you all. In Jesus name. Amen.
Miracles of Standing firm in God by Dr. Priscilla UCHE
«Now it is God that makes us and you stand firm in Christ.
He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, put His Spirit in our hearts as a deposit guaranteeing of what is to come. » (2 Corinthians 1: 21-22)
Standing Firm in God calls for a mindset to trust, even amid storm and tempest, in God. It demands full confidence in «the Being perfect in power, wisdom, and goodness… It is to this end that Saint Paul drew our attention in Philippians 4:1 «Therefore, my beloved brethren whom I long to see, my joy and crown, in this way stand firm in the Lord, my beloved »; as well as in Ephesians 6:10 «Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might »
But, from several references in the Scripture, it emerges that Standing Firm in the Lord is not a force of will easy to develop and master as in the case of the Israelites on their way to the promised land: « Then I said to you, “Do not be terrified; do not be afraid of them. The LORD your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as he did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes, and in the wilderness. There you saw how the LORD your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place.” In spite of this, you did not trust in the LORD your God… (Deuteronomy 1: 29 – 32). Also, it becomes obvious that it is this lack of determination to Stand Firm in the Lord that constitutes great obstacles to spiritual progress of God’s people. «The Israelites had moved about in the wilderness forty years until all the men who were of military age when they left Egypt had died, since they had not obeyed the LORD. For the LORD had sworn to them that they would not see the land he had solemnly promised their ancestors to give us, a land flowing with milk and honey. (Joshua 5: 6)
In parallel, biblical sources give many accounts of miracles (divine interventions) associated to Standing Firm in the Lord. They comprise, firstly, the case of an aged couple giving birth to a child « I will bless her, and indeed I will give you a son by her. Then I will bless her, and she shall be a mother of nations; kings of peoples will come from her." Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said in his heart, "Will a child be born to a man one hundred years old? And will Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child? (Genesis 17: 16-17). So Sarah conceived and bore a son to Abraham in his old age, at the appointed time of which God had spoken to him. (Genesis 21:2). Secondly, the dividing of the Red Sea for the Israelites to cross and escape from the Egyptians. «Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all that night, and made the sea into dry land, and the waters were divided. So, the children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand and on their left. (Exodus 14: 21 – 22).
The challenges of Standing Firm in God originate mainly from its fundamental law, which is to have « an implicit trust in God, our Creator and Lord». As a matter of fact, relying on God, in all circumstances, is an event that can only be accomplished on basis of faith. Did not Habakkuk 2:4 made it clear that «The Just Shall Live by Faith» ?. According to the Bible, faith is “trusting in something you cannot explicitly prove.” Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”
Hebrews 11:1. It is a strong belief that what is hoped for has already happened or must happen as in the following cases: In the first place, it was by faith that «Noah built a large boat to save his family from the flood. He obeyed God, who warned him about things that had never happened before» (Hebrews 11: 7). Secondly, it was by faith that « a poor widow saw her jar of flour and jug of oil staying full until a famine passed. Elijah wasn’t directed by God to visit the richest family in the land, but to a poor widow. By faith she first prepared what she thought was her last meal for the prophet and the Lord blessed her with all the flour plus oil she would need to feed all three of them (1 King 17`: 14 -16). Thirdly, it was by faith that a woman with blood sickness was made whole. And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his
garment: 21 For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour (Mathew 9 :20-22).
The principal points of this message are as follows.
Firstly, it is not challenges that constitute the bases of Standing Firm in God,
but resolving to rise to the challenges. The disposition to face difficulties
related to serving God acts as a backbone to Standing Firm in God and
as a trigger to stream of miracles. The miracles flowing from the
mysteries of crucifixion and resurrection were made possible because
Jesus accepted the huge challenge before Him: the cup that was
presented to Him. He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.” (Mathew 26: 42)
Secondly, several references in the bible contain proofs illustrating that
miracles do not proceed from the challenges themselves, but from the
efforts of clinging to God in all circumstances, even in the periods of trials
Thirdly, Standing Firm in the Lord is neither a process working by itself
with little or no effort, nor an act occurring spontaneously. Rather, it a
way of being, a chosen way of conduct based on the acceptation of
sacrifices and efforts that it entails. Cleaving to God is a choice
materializing through actions with resources rooted in God.
Fourthly, while Standing Firm in the Lord is a force of will difficult to forge, the commands below constitute means to its development, consolidation
a) Desiring to do God’s will or placing God first in everything,
b) Nourishing by His Words
c) Clinging to His promises,
d) Prayer and fasting
e) Praises and adoration.
Desiring to do God’s will or placing God first in everything. It touches upon the strength to decide to do God’s will, to let things happen according to His own way and time without foreknowledge of its full implications. Desiring to do God’s will, as Psalm 40:8 puts it, corresponds to taking pleasure in His desire: I delight to do Your will, O my God; Your Law is within my heart. (Psalm 40:8).
Biblical accounts linked to miracles resulting from desiring to do God’s will
embody, firstly, Christ’s resurrection: Jesus who suffered on the Cross of Calvary and died for our sins was risen miraculously from the dead. «But God raised Him from the dead, releasing Him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for Him to be held in its clutches». (Acts 2: 24). These accounts comprehend secondly, the restitution of Job’s fortune: After Job had prayed for his friends, the Lord restored his fortunes and gave him twice as much as he had before (Job 42:10). They comprise thirdly, Daniel’s deliverance: And when he came to the den, he cried out with a lamenting voice to Daniel. The king spoke, saying to Daniel, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to
deliver you from the lions?” Then Daniel said to the king, “O king, live forever! My God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths, so that they have not hurt me, because I was found innocent before Him; and also, O king, I have done no wrong before you.” (Daniel 6:20 – 21)
Nourishing by the God’s Word. This relates to feeding on the Word of God
defined as means by which God created all things. By Word, God revealed
Himself through His creation and plan. Genesis chapter 1 firmly establishes God's supremacy over the whole of creation. God has created all things by His spoken word. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. (John 1: 1-3). To summarize the psalmist declarations: "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of his mouth" For he spoke, and it came to be; he commanded, and it stood firm" His word continues to reign supreme over all of creation».
The Word of God provides abundant sources for us, such as, firstly, spiritual food for inner growth. « Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word, that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:4). Secondly, the Word represents fountain of strength to mind and soul (John 2:14). Thirdly, the Word acts as foundation for building together God’s people «And now I commit you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up… (Acts 20 :33).
Miracles related to the power in the Word of God come into light, when, on the cross of Calvary, Jesus said: It is finished!” — and thereby threw open the gates of Heaven for all who believe in Him and obey Him. (John 19: 30). Also, when Saul recovered his sight as Ananias pronounced the Word of God. And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost. 18 And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized. ((Acts 9 : 17-18). Thirdly, when dried bones rose again on hearing the Word of God. He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord !. This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath[a] enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’” So I prophesied as I was
commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. (Ezekiel 37: 3 -7).
Clinging to God’s promises. This pertains to holding on fast, for our own good, to a decree that is irrevocable or unbreakable « No, I will not break my covenant; I will not take back one word of what I said." (Psalm 89:34). It is also relying on an assurance that never fail. « For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us». 2 Corinthians 1:20) ; «"...not one word has failed of all the good things that the LORD your God promised concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one of them has failed.", Joshua 23:14.
Biblical examples of miracles related to clinging on to God’s promises comprise firstly, a guarantee of an eternal life through believing in Christ Jesus. 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. Secondly, a vow of abundant provision. Bring the whole tithe into the
storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. (Malachi 3:10). Thirdly, assurance of reward for our efforts. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. (Luke 9: 9 – 10).
Prayer and fasting. Why? Because «Prayer touches the heart of God but Prayer and Fasting MOVES the heart of God. Prayer and Fasting produce countless miracles that would never have occurred otherwise». Samples of miracles attributed to intervention of prayer and fasting comprehend, firstly, the saving of the Jews through prayer and fasting. When a Persian emperor sent out a decree to destroy and kill all Jews, Queen Esther, her maidens and other citizens fasted and prayed for three days and three nights. As a result, the Persian empire completely changed in favor of the Jews. The enemies of the Jews suffered defeat. Instead of destruction, the Jews experienced favor, peace and prosperity. "Go, assemble all the Jews who are found in Susa,
and fast for me; do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my maidens also will fast in the same way. And thus I will go in to the king, which is not according to the law; and if I perish, I perish."(Esther 4:16). So it was, when the king saw Queen Esther standing in the court, that she
found favor in his sight, and the king held out to Esther the golden scepter that was in his hand. Then Esther went near and touched the top of the scepter. And the king said to her, “What do you wish, Queen Esther? What is your request? It shall be given to you—up to half the kingdom!” (Esther 5: 2-3) Miracles of prayer and fasting include, also, the delivery of Nineveh - City from destruction. When God sent Jonah to the city of Nineveh to warn them to change their evil ways or God would destroy them. (Jonah 3) The entire city of people repented, prayed and fasted. Because of this, God did not destroy Nineveh. These miracles include, finally, the birth of virgin Mary. Joachim and Anne had been barren for 20 years, but after they had prayed and fasted for 40 days, Joachim and Anne conceived a child latter known as The Virgin Mary. Praises and worship. Through praises and worship, we come to glorify, honor, exalt and please God. Also, through them, we show our adoration and loyalty to God for His love, grace and mercy at all times and at all places. Furthermore, praises and worship afford us occasions of humbleness before the Lord and opens ways for us to receive grace. James 4:6, 10 tells us that, «God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up" Lastly, they strengthen us in the Lord and helps us develop a God-like and Christ-like character, and as a result, we become like unto God that we admire and worship.
The biblical account of miracles linked to praises and worship comprises, firstly, the defeat of the men of Ammon: And they rose early in the morning and went out into the wilderness of Tekoa. And when they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, “Hear me, Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem! Believe in the Lord your God, and you will be established; believe his
prophets, and you will succeed.” And when he had taken counsel with the people, he appointed those who were to sing to the Lord and praise him in holy attire, as they went before the army, and say, “Give thanks to the Lord, for his steadfast love endures forever.” And when they began to sing and praise, the Lord set an ambush against the men of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah, so that they were routed (2 Chronicles 20: 20 -23). The account comprehends, secondly, the deliverance of Paul and Silas: About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them, and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken. And immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone's bonds were unfastened.” (Acts 16:25-26) This account embodies lastly, the message of St Paul in Philippians 4:6-7 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
In conclusion, Standing Firm in the Lord is a way of being associated to having implicit faith in the Lord. It involves multiply challenges, but from hence proceed miraculous events testifying the potency of God.
Clinging to God is maintained by desiring God’s will; by intake of His word that Hebrews 4:12 describes thus: « For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. » Standing Firm in the Lord is reinforced by holding on to the Divine project (Jeremiah 29:11); by opening our hearts to God, and to God alone, through prayer and fasting not only for ourselves and beloved ones, but also for others; by imitating God through humbleness, praises and adoration and by rejoicing in the Lord for ourselves and on behalf of others.
As a weak and imperfect being, I have been struggling all my life to stand firm in the Lord. In this struggling, I have fallen and risen times without number. These fallings have great advantages of enabling me to experience what a life with a false light tasted like, a passing through a dark alley disguised as Christian one felt like. At each fall, it is Grace that has helped me to rise and to continue in my struggling path to stand firm in the Lord.
Based on this taste and feeling, I am testifying that: Challenges apart, clinging to God provides us with an occasion to identify with God, and through this identification, possess ourselves by our inner spiritual power and protect the authentic gold and diamond within us. Perhaps, we may not know the existence of these treasures in us, but let’s make no mistake about it, Satan and his agents surely do. Seeing the spiritual treasures in God’s
children, is source of restlessness for them. Therefore, let’s be vigilant about all that glitters, for they are not gold, but artifices and counterfeits going and coming after the authentic gold and diamond dormant in us. Standing Firm in God helps to open our eyes to the Goodness of God and to see our own reflect in this goodness. He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the Lord (Psalm 33: 5). Holding on to God give us supernatural peace that surpasses natural understanding, the experience of true joy that comes from the presence of God, the freedom that comes from the knowledge of our salvation. May God bless you. Dr. Priscilla UCHE. 20th July 2017.