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whats your angle?

June 20, 2012 Leave a comment

A couple of months ago, I shared that the Senior Pastor of RCCG Restoration House Hamilton, Dr. Olayinka Dada introduced Future Leaders In the Making (FLIM) Sundays and on those Sundays, three youths were given ten (10) minutes to teach/speak to the congregation. In April, he introduced Super FLIM. In Super FLIM, three of the past FLIM winners would compete. For the premier edition, Peace E*, Tope S* and I were appointed to compete. Click here to view my interview for the event.

The premier Super FLIM edition was on Sunday, April 29th, 2012. I was the first speaker and spoke on a topic I termed What’s Your Angle? It was an examination on why Christians do things for/to God.

I drew my text from James 4:3a – When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives (NIV). I originally read from the Amplified Version and started from verse 2 so verse 3 would make more sense – 2 You are jealous and covet [what others have] and your desires go unfulfilled; [so] you become murderers. [To hate is to murder as far as your hearts are concerned.] You burn with envy and anger and are not able to obtain [the gratification, the contentment, and the happiness that you seek], so you fight and war. You do not have, because you do not ask. 3 [Or] you do ask [God for them] and yet fail to receive, because you ask with wrong purpose and evil, selfish motives. Your intention is [when you get what you desire] to spend it in sensual pleasures.

What’s your angle? What angle are you working on? In this context, Angle means viewpoint, opinion, attitude. Informally, it means a secret motive. For example, she’s been too friendly lately—what’s her angle? “What’s your angle?” is a question usually preceded by coaxing; especially with parents and friends. A perfect illustration is when one needs a favor and plans to obtain it by first offering unwarranted compliments to put the person in the perfect mood conducive for favors. Sometimes, that’s what we Christians do with God.

Think:
Why do you come to church? – dress up, eye service, network, pray, praise or worship?
Why do you give offerings? – to be blessed or to bless God for His goodness?
Do you praise Him because he deserves it or because you want something from Him?
Is God just a problem solver to you? – is when you’re in trouble to only time to speak to God? Some people don’t even let Him solve their problems, they devise solutions, tell Him and wait for Him to work His “magic”.
Is God just an ATM to you? – does God only hear from you when you want this and want that?
Why do you return your tithes? – to have Him open the windows of Heaven and pour out a blessing or to honor Him because you respect Him?

I believe it is okay to be motivated by your needs because He is our provider and He sustains us, but I don’t believe it’s okay to do things God likes/wants simply because you want something back.
Christians, myself included, sometimes operate on the premise that we have God all figured out – if we praise and worship him, He has to bless us. Unfortunately, there is no secret formula to figuring God out and we can’t put Him in a box.
The truth is God doesn’t have to do anything! In fact, the only thing God certainly has to do is what He wants to do. Psalm 115:3 – Our God is heaven; He does whatever pleases Him (NIV).

Consider:
It pleases Him to keep and sustain you. A brain/cerebral aneurysm is the swelling or dilation of a cerebral artery (supplies blood from the heart to the brain) or cerebral vein (returns blood from the brain to the heart). When it eventually bursts, it causes paralysis, coma or sudden death. It is one of the scariest ailments because there are no symptoms or definite causes; it just happens. God has kept you day in, day out.
It pleases Him that you have His breath. He could take His breath anytime He likes and you would seize to exist. He hasn’t because it pleases Him that you live. He has also woken you up every day for the past X years. It isn’t your alarm that does. If He ever forgot to wake you up, you wouldn’t be living.

A lot of us have no idea how many things God protects and shields us from daily, yet asks for anything, but a little gratitude in return. It isn’t necessarily because you asked that you are alive, but because it pleased Him.

Change your perspective:
1. Stop the “gimme gimme” attitude with God (Acts 20:35c).
2. Seek God’s face and not His hands all the time; He wants a relationship not set up a request line.
3. Give offerings because you want to honor Him (Proverb 3:9).
4. Return your tithes joyfully because you respect Him (Malachi 3:10).
5. Learn to show appreciation and be grateful for all He does. If you don’t what to thank Him for, just run through your day in your head.

In conclusion, it is not wrong to have expectations when coming to God; it isn’t so much about what you are doing, but why you are doing what you do that matters to God. Thanksgiving is the ultimate and that should be your angle.

I hope you’ve been blessed?

As before, please follow this link to watch the actual video of the ministration on facebook or this link to watch it on YouTube. Once again, I saved the best version of the sermon for last lol. Enjoy.

This time I didn’t win, and rightly so, I also think Tope did an amazing job.

the father-child dynamic

February 24, 2012 Leave a comment

In line with the vision of the church – Restoring Potential, Raising Leaders, the Senior Pastor of RCCG Restoration House Hamilton, Dr. Olayinka Dada introduced Future Leaders In the Making (FLIM) Sundays. On FLIM Sundays, three youths each permitted to give a ten-minute (10 mins) sermon, they are scored on various parameters by a panel of judges and towards the end of the service, the youth with the highest score is proclaimed the winner.

I had my turn on Sunday, November 20th, 2011. I was the second speaker and spoke on a topic I termed The Father-Child Dynamic. It was an analysis of the relationship between a Father and a Child in comparison with the relationship between God and a Christian.

I drew my text from Matthew 19:14 – But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. I originally read from the New International Version (NIV) – Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these. I laid emphasis on ”for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these”. Now, let that phrase resonate within you as I share the message with you.

Jesus knew we have so much to learn from little children. He knew there are some things we forget as we get older and lose our innocence, and that is what we will explore. We are going to rediscover some of those lost attributes, and revive them by God’s grace. Here are some basic characteristics of children:

1. Adoration: Children adore their parent(s) – in relation to comparison (1 Corinthians 1:31) and in relation to imitation (1 Peter 1:16). Children boast in their parents in comparison to other parents. For example, “my dad has a bigger car than your dad.” Do you boast about God to others? Children like to imitate their parents too. For example, as a child, if my dad was a lawyer, because I adore him, I’d want to be a lawyer too, so I could grow up to become just like him. Do you try to emulate Jesus in your daily life? Do you want to be just like Him?

2. Faith: Children believe their parent(s) without an element of doubt (Matthew 21:22). For example, if my dad told me as a child that he was going to get me the moon for my birthday, I would believe against all logic that if he told me I was getting the moon, he was going to get me the moon. I wouldn’t care how he was going to do it, all I would know is I was going to get the moon and I wouldn’t care what anybody thought. Do you have unconditional faith in God? Do believe His promises to you against all logic? Do you believe he can do the unfathomable just for you?

3. Forgiveness: Children forgive easily (Luke 6:37c). Children get offended too, but forgive offenses easily. For example, as a child, if my dad told me he was sorry/apologized after upsetting me, I would forgive him, forget about the issue, become friends with him again and we can play with my toys. Do you readily forgive others after they wrong you and apologize? Do we hold on to it and wait for an apology? Do not hold grudges; as far as God is concerned, there is nothing anyone can do to you that is absolutely unforgivable. Remember, an important thing to note is that God forgives us as we forgive others. Remember, to err is human, to forgive is divine.

4. Obedience: Children are obedient, most of the time. It doesn’t mean when they do mess up that adults will let it slide. We do not have that luxury with God either. God demands total obedience from us; obedience is non-negotiable with Him (Joshua 1:8). When children do wrong or are disobedient, we are instructed to use the rod to correct them. Do not think God will not punish you, just because He forgives you. His punishment is worse because you do not know when He will, where He will or how severe it will be. Obedience is better than sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:22b).

5. Teachability: Children are teachable and always willing to learn (2 Timothy 2:15). Children ask questions, a lot of questions, because they want to know what you know and learn more. Do you ask God questions and wait for His reply or do you assume you know everything and can handle it all? Teachability comes from humility; your level of education is immeasurably inferior to God’s vast knowledge. You need to humble yourself in God’s sight so He can lift you up and reveal mysteries to you.

In conclusion, there is nothing in the bible put there without reason. I’m sure you can see we have quite a lot to learn from little children. Never forget, no matter how old we get, we will always be God’s little children so learn to Adore Him, Boast in Him, Imitate Jesus, Forgive & Forget, have Unwavering Faith in Him, be Obedient to His Word, be Humble and be Teachable.

I hope you’ve been blessed?

Please follow this link to watch the actual video of the ministration on facebook or this link to watch it on YouTube.

I saved the best version of the sermon for last lol. Enjoy.

Oh and by the way, I won! 😀

grade yourself

October 24, 2011 1 comment

Last month, I attended the Making of Champions 2011 Conference organized by RCCG House of Praise, Mississauga. It was an amazing event in which speakers such as Clive Pick, Dr. Mensah Otabil, Randall Pickett, Rev. Sam Adeyemi, Dr. Sam Chand and Pstr. Wale Akinsiku came to teach on topics ranging from entrepreneurship to finance, leadership to spiritual growth over a four week period.

I missed the first three weeks of the event; not knowing about it until the fourth week. I was upset to learn I missed Dr. Otabil and Mr. Pickett’s seminars. I’ve heard a lot about Dr. Otabil and his insightful teachings; and I’ve known about Mr. Pickett since I bought his book, The Campus CEO in the summer of 2008. I wasn’t too upset about missing some of the others. For example, I’ve already had the pleasure of sitting through Clive Pick and Dr. Sam Chand’s teachings at two seminars held by my church, RCCG Restoration House, Hamilton.

Anyway, the final Guest Speaker was going to be Rev. Sam Adeyemi. I’d heard a lot about his teaching and ministry since before I initially left Nigeria, but never got around to attending a Sunday service at the Daystar Christian Centre, Lagos. Naturally, when I heard he would be speaking, I had to attend the program. There were four programs – Friday Night Ministration, Business Breakfast Meeting, Saturday Night Ministration and the Making of Champions Thanksgiving Sunday Service.

I went for the Friday Night Ministration and his teaching was quite insightful. During his sermon, he mentioned his mandate is to help/teach people to succeed in every facet of their lives; so when it was announced that he would be the keynote speaker at the Business Breakfast Meeting, I jumped at the opportunity immediately and paid for a ticket.

I had the opportunity to network with a lot of business people in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) that Saturday morning. At first, it was a little intimidating because I was probably among the top 10 youngest people at the function, but there was no discrimination or anything of that sort, so it was easy to mingle and chat. It was money very well spent, and definitely worth more than I paid for.

Amongst the many topics he spoke/taught on is what I will share with you today – an assessment of your entrepreneurship level. Before the lecture, we were all handed a form. In it was a set nine questions. These nine questions ask questions that help assess one grade him/herself as an entrepreneur. It was pretty easy and straight forward. All we had to do was individually grade yourselves by circling between from 1 and 7 (1 being seldom and 7 being almost always) which describes you best for all the questions, sum up your scores and find your level based on the total.

I have a attached a copy of the form below; you can download it and fill for yourself.

As seen in the form, a total between 1 – 20 means you may need some mentoring, a total between 21 – 40 means you have opportunities for growth, a total between 41 – 60 means you are an entrepreneur in the making, and a total between  61 – 70 means you are an entrepreneur. From what I gathered, those in the 1 – 20 group are people who have the entrepreneurial spirit, but need some guidance and mentoring in order to build  and nurture their spirit. Those in the 21 – 40 group are the determined people still trying to find their footing or those who have begun their journey. Those in the 41 – 60 group are the people who are well on their way, but still have room from improvement. Finally, those in the 61 – 70 group are the people already entrepreneurs, continually expanding and exploring new avenues. If you notice, the highest possible score is 63 and not 70; that’s because no one is the perfect entrepreneur, and there’s always room for expansion and/or improvement. I scored 53 in mine; which places me in the entrepreneur in the making category 🙂

It was a great meeting. I also bought one of his books, The Parable of Dollars. May be I’ll share some of the knowledge I gain from there when I’m done with it. If you ever can make it to a seminar where he will be speaking, I strongly recommend you attend. I’ll leave you with something he mentioned I think is profound – “Not everyone can have a business, some people have to be the employees. Only people with an entrepreneurial mindset determine how far they go and what they can accomplish. Also, not every business person is an entrepreneur; an entrepreneur is someone who creates products and services that meet the needs of people for a profit. Entrepreneurs meet needs and get paid for it. Find a need, ask God to reveal the solution to you and provide you with the means to execute it.”

I think it is important to note that no matter the level you are or have attained, there is still an element of growth potential. Never get too comfortable everywhere you are. I hope my posts continue to be helpful. Cheers!