Hello everyone, I hope you all are doing great? By the way, welcome to my month the month of November. I turn 31 on the 15th, yayyyyy.
Anyway, in my last post, I hinted you guys that the blog will be taking a break December 14th, but before then I will try to write as much as I can. Less I forget, I really appreciate everyone who took the time to comment on that post or send me messages. I don’t take it for granted, God bless you. The replies and messages made me know that I’m definitely doing something right back to the reason for this post.
Let’s talk about Faith and by Faith, I mean our religion. Christianity is not a religion but for the purposes of this article, so you can get my drift. I titled today’s post The Love of Christ found Me.
What do I mean? Before I begin I will share a personal experience that birthed this article.
I used to attend COZA. for those who don’t know, COZA is a church headquartered in Abuja it’s an acronym which stands for the Common Wealth of Zion Assembly. COZA was my Heaven, I told whoever cared to listen that I can never leave COZA neither will I marry outside of it and even if I did, the husband must follow me to my church. I never ever thought that I could one day leave, I looked down on other churches because I felt mine was the best (SMH).
Anyway, the scandal that rocked the church not too long ago shook me. I didn’t even know the extent until recently. Long story short, I left the church (because I wouldn’t want to delve into that).
But the scandal rocked my faith, I didn’t know. Prior to the scandal breaking, I held my Pastors in such high esteem; they were untouchable and the next best thing after God. Their word was Law, and I lived for every word that fell from their mouth so imagine my shock when that scandal broke.
I lost faith in the church (not just COZA), lost faith in Men of God, doubted the sincerity of Christians and I stopped praying.
I started believing the people who said Prayer or going to church wasn’t important, and Pastors are liars. I told myself, after all, there are people who do not believe in God but are prospering so why bother being a Christian. Going to church became a bore. I went days without studying my bible and stuck to movies.
It didn’t help that I was going through a rough patch in my life, so the whole Faith and Believing made no sense.
I didn’t know the extent my backsliding had gone until I noticed I no longer believed in miracles. It all felt like a sham. And what made it worse was that I was away from home, I had time all to myself to do as I wanted. Now that’s one thing I learnt, before you lose your faith, you become isolated; isolated from people who love you, isolated from believers who can lift you up.
Now I am not blaming my lack of faith on the scandal but I’m just saying the effect it had no me.
But God is a Faithful and a Merciful Father. He chases us and doesn’t give up on us even when we’ve disappointed Him. I started getting back on track when I joined a new church and hearing the Word like my life had been exposed.
One day, a friend popped into my office to say Hi. He was in the neighbourhood and just decided to see me. And somehow we delved into spirituality and he was the first person I opened up to about my struggles and he encouraged me to write a letter to God. Prior to this, it was really difficult to talk to God, and so writing that letter helped me in opening up to my Father.
We’ve started our relationship again (God & I) and I’ve started praying again, studying again and believing again.
Now another thing I learnt from these struggles is that backsliding doesn’t just happen. It happens gradually. Little by little, step by step you begin to lose your way. When you start to make excuses why you can’t talk to God or study His Word, when you begin to enjoy doing things that otherwise you wouldn’t have, then just know that backsliding is around the corner.
I said earlier that I came to a point where I questioned my faith, I asked myself severally, “Am I still a Christian? Because I became discontent with the Church and its people. You know we Nigerians, we are very religious people, but we are still very corrupt so I was asking myself, what is the place of the church? What are we learning in church every Sunday that we can’t use to change our world Monday to Saturday? Our church pews are filled Sunday to Sunday but our lives have no impact.
Now it’s easy to go from thinking like this, to complete backsliding straight. But I believe we all will go through a phase where we doubt. It’s only normal especially in this world where there are pressures around us. That’s why Jesus said in Luke 18:8b Nevertheless when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”
What matters are how we respond to them, are we going to overcome and or let the enemy steal our joy?
But when we do overcome, we come out stronger, because now we come out with a better determination, and more sincere Faith and Love. We see God in a different light. We see His pure undiluted Love for us for when we were yet sinners, He died for us. He chases us like the Shepherd who leaves his 99 for that one who strayed away. And that Love is one we can never recover from.
I believe the Lord allows us to pass through these struggles, because one we will overcome two, we become more genuine people because now we realise we are fallible, mere mortals.
I know we live in a world that takes God out of the equation; always. It’s even become cool to say you don’t believe in God, but let’s look at what the scripture says in Psalm 10:4 The wicked in his proud countenance does not seek God; God is in none of his thoughts.
When one gets to the point that Life is smooth, everything is working, you are eating the fruits of your labour, one may be tempted to say, I don’t need God. My hands are sufficient for me. Let’s be careful that when we finally get what we’ve been looking for, we wouldn’t relegate God to the background.
Let’s see a real-life example in 2 Chronicles 26:5 of King UzziahHe sought God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding in the visions of God; and as long as he sought the Lord, God made him prosper.
He became exceedingly strong, famous, won all his battles, his enemies brought dues to him but unfortunately, he became proud that he felt he didn’t need God, but see what happened just in verse 16. But when he was strong his heart was lifted up, to his destruction, for he transgressed against the Lord his God by entering the temple of the Lord to burn incense on the altar of incense.
In the end, he died a leper, isolated till the day of his date.
When you put off a fan, it still continues to roll for minutes until it stops. That’s how it is with God when you believe you’ve arrived, and you relegate Him to the background, things will keep working; for a while. Then eventually you become worse than when you first started.
I encourage you today to seek God in all you do. No matter what you do, His Love is forever and for everlasting. He is real. And He’s still working miracles, you just have to believe. And we should not forsake the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25 (NKJV)
We cannot be discouraged. The fact that there are fake pastors is evidence that there are real Men of God. We need each other, you cannot grow as a child of God if you say, I won’t attend church anymore, the Holy Spirit himself will teach me in my house. I dare say, that is a proud spirit and it is not from God. The bible says when one falls, another will lift him up. No one is an island.
Talk soon guys, Love and Light.