Understanding Anxiety : Fear God, Not Man

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My brothers and sisters,

Fear is also one of those things that if left unchecked, will cause one to lead a life of mediocrity.  Fear can be beaten if we know how. These are some of the notes I’ve taken from reading a book listed below, and I encourage all to read it for themselves.

ANXIETY: POSITIVE AND NEGATIVE

There are two types of anxiety; positive and negative. A positive anxiety pushes one to be responsible (eg. repaying a mortgage on time) and a negative one leads to unnecessary worry, which leads to psychological stress. It is also said that the common mental health disorder is anxiety. However, scripture makes it clear that we are not to be anxious.

THE TWO ELEMENTS OF FEAR

The source of fear (the fear object) will have two elements; presence and power. Both will need to be present in order to give strength to the fear, invoking a negative reaction. Over time, if the fear object is reinforced over time, this can lead one down to overthinking, faulty thinking, predictive thinking, day-dreaming resulting into a self-limiting, self-defeating lifestyle driven by fear or worse, cause one to withdraw into the realm of fantasy. What affects the mind, will ultimately affect the body.

THE SNAKE ANALOGY

If you were in your bedroom and were told that the most poisonous snake in the world was in the same room as you. One would understandably feel fearful. Both fear elements of presence (in the same room) and power (most poisonous) are present.

Let’s suggest that the same poisonous snake is not in your bedroom, but was locked in a cage in Australia. Though snake is still potent, its presence is far removed. There is no impending danger in proximity, and one can sigh in relief.

Imagine the same scenario but the snake is not poisonous. If you are afraid of snakes, one would still feel in danger. If not, then the snake can be quickly disposed of. Though its presence is noted, the snake is without power. The position would be the same if you discovered that the snake was actually dead.

To beat fear, either the power and/or the presence must be identified and removed or put in the correct context.

SCARED OF SATAN?

It is important to understand that as we are on this earth, so is Satan.

The bad news is until he is thrown in the lake of fire set aside for him and his angels (see Matt 25:41)  he will use his worldly powers to distract Christians into his submission.

The good news is that he has already been defeated and it is only a matter of time until this is done. For us, we need to know this truth in order to walk victoriously in our lives.

So, should Christians fear Satan? Of course not! Going back to the components of fear, yes, he is present, but he is not powerful. This is why he schemes, through the lens of the world, to get others to believe that he is powerful. Satan is not powerful and he never will be, unless you’re not alert to resist him.*

James 4:7 (ESV)
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

*For an in-depth Bible study on this topic, please find the following links below:

You vs The World – Part 1
You vs The World – Part 2

THE FEAR OF MAN VS THE FEAR OF GOD

 Should we fear man? Scripture reveals that the fear of man is a snare/trap (Proverbs 29: 25) and if we lived to please man, we would not be deemed servants of God (Galatians 1: 10). This begs the question why we should fear God and what does it look like to fear Him?  Simply put it means a reverent fear, similar to a fear when a child finds out his parents are nowhere to be found. Another aspect is fear in the sense of being scared of the being in question in a healthy way, a call to be responsible.

It can be understood why a fear of man exists; they could harm you physically (presence) or, emotionally, psychology thought an attack on reputation, sharing intimate information, or even blackmail (power). All these horrible experiences can be caused by man.

But what about God? Why should we fear Him compared to Man?

Matthew 10: 28 (ESV) (Emphasis added) And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

Man has the ability to destroy the body, but God, who is Omnipotent and Omnipresent (ALL powerful, and ALL present) can destroy the body and the soul.
Know that your soul has eternal value, and mustn’t be lost or given away cheaply. The world didn’t give you our happiness, and it has no right to take it away.

For those who are not Christians, this may seem a bit harsh and cutthroat, but allow me to share the good news; salvation is available to all those who believe in Jesus Christ! Click here to find out how! The Gospel: An Illustration

 HOW TO BEAT FEAR

Here are some helpful tips to help beat fear. I’ve broken it down into two categories; for we cannot ignore sin, and the harmful effects it can have in the future. Unfortunately, there are some consequences we are going to have to live with due to disobedience to God’s word. Nevertheless, God is a forgiving God and will provide grace to empower you to move forward towards freedom, which is found at the end of a disciplined life.

For an in-depth Bible study on this topic relating to the Holy Spirit, please find the link below:
Power, Love, and a Sound Mind

You cannot change your past, but God can allow you to become free from it –  Dr Neil T. Anderson.

Irrational fears:
Identify both fear elements;
Put them before God in prayer and meditate on scriptures, e.g.  Isaiah 41:10 (NIV);
Ask yourself factual questions surrounding both elements and remove one, or both elements;
Reinforce your mind with the truth as revealed in scripture;
Live in freedom and walk in victory.

Legitimate fears:
Identify both fear elements;
Put them before God in prayer;
Ask yourself factual questions;
Seek God’s for forgiveness;
Accept his forgiveness and Repent; Take responsibility for your action and mitigate by seeking help, guidance, accountability and work to on challenge until it is solved;
Produce fruit by keeping with repentance;
Reinforce your identity with the truth as revealed in scripture;
Live in freedom and walk in victory.

Book Recommendation

I recommend this book entitled Freedom From Fear: Overcoming Worry and Anxiety by Dr Neil T. Anderson and Rich Miller. I was quite sceptical at first, (total freedom from fear? Really?) but I was blown away at the wisdom shared. It is definitely worth the investment and would go on my personal list as a must read.

Thank you for reading and may God bless you on your journey of spiritual growth.

Tunde T. Amao

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Tree of Life – Bible Study

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My brothers and sisters,

I’m excited to share with you what I learned when studying the Bible with a man of God, which inspired the initial Tree of Life post. I’ve added a bit more to it and I pray that it will help you understand how much God loves us and how merciful He is to us.

Where to begin? Of course, in the garden of Eden. (Emphasis Added)

Generally, God created the garden, the animals, the fishes and place the First Ones, Adam and Eve in the garden. God instructed Adam not to eat from the tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and he passed that command onto Eve.

Genesis 1: 29 (ESV): And God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit. You shall have them for food.

Genesis 2: 8-9 (ESV): And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground the LORD God made to spring up every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was in the midst of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2: 15-17 (ESV): The LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to work it and to keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man saying, “You may surely eat of every tree in the garden, but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.

As the event unfolds, Satan deceives Eve and she eats the fruit and gives it to Adam; the start of the Fall. As outlined in Genesis 3: 14-19, God punished the snake by way of a curse, increases Eve’s child pain in childbirth and declares that her desire will be for her husband and declares to Adam the consequences of his disobedience, a cursed ground and the reality of having to work extra hard to eat.

Sidenote: God cursed the snake, not Adam and Eve. God only told them of the reality sin has caused, in the body and in the environment.

God made a declaration in verse 22:

Then the LORD God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing Good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat and live forever-”
and as verse 23-24 states, sent them out of Eden and placed cherubim and a flaming sword to guard the way to the Tree of Life.

Going back, God had told them that they could eat from any tree in the garden, which INCLUDED the Tree of Life. In Genesis 3:22, God provides the nature of fruit from the Tree of Life, to bestow one with life forevermore; everlasting life. As pointed out in an earlier post, the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil gave Adam and Eve the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

Can we infer the original purpose and intention of God? I believe so! I learned that if Adam and Eve had eaten the fruit of the Tree of Life firstand assuming that they had eaten the fruit of the Knowledge of Good and Evil afterwards, they would be like God indeed, with everlasting life and the ability to handle the Knowledge of Good and Evil just like God Himself, not in a relative fashion which is mankind thinking about Good and Evil from his own perspective.

But this was not so, and God had to push Adam and Eve out to protect the Tree of Life. Again, why? Well, I learned that Adam and Eve were hungry and their hunger reflected an issue of the soul caused by the introduction of sin. They had created capacity within themselves, their soul, and needed to fill it.**

However, as we are aware, this was not so. Adam and Eve were in a state of sin, due to their disobedience. If they were able to obtain access to the fruit of the Tree of Life, then a catastrophic would arise; they would have everlasting life, the knowledge of good and evil coupled with unrepentant sin. 

 Adam and Eve repented, shown by the skin garments God covered them with (Gen 3:21; the first animal sacrifice! Where else did God get skins from? May explain the animal sacrifices later spoke about in the Law, and Hebrews 9:22 provides insight: Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.) rather than the loincloths they fashioned out of fig leaves (Gen 3: 7), but there was a problem; Adam carried the human race, and the sin affected them as well. Adam could not repent on behalf of the entire human race, but for his own sin.

Your sin effects other people. Read Romans 5: 12-19 for details. 

This is why God made provision to send Jesus, to die on the cross, to remove the innate sin, and to clothe you with righteousness. You have to believe in Jesus to receive the free gift of salvation and righteousness, then comes the renewing of your mind, the process of unlearning and relearning the word of God in its truth and entirety. Once obtained, you can put on the new man, your new identity and live it out with power and confidence.

1 Corinthians 15: 20-22 (ESV): But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.

**The soul yearns for something more. The innate sin causes disruption in the soul. Some seek to fill the void by seeking drugs, sex, pornography, exorbitant spending, excessive television, relationships addictions etc. Capacity is created in the soul and a need to fulfil it grows, hence why addictions and reckless living manifests and takes place. The truth is, these will never satisfy you. They are temporary. Once obtained/consumed/indulged, the “benefit” vanishes. But when one fills their soul with Jesus, you create capacity, and your need for Him grows and grows. That’s why he’s satisfying. He always fills the void. 

Thank you for reading, and may God bless you for your diligence in studying His word.

Tunde T. Amao

 

 

 

Tree of Life

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Brothers and Sisters,

I want to share the revelation I had received before the new year, with a simple message:

Do not be lead astray by your thoughts.

I fell into this and it was a rollercoaster.The lies I had believed led to overthinking and making assumptions which led to making excuses and living without purpose and outside God’s good work.

Thank God for redemption.

“I don’t look for scriptures to appease my flesh. I look for them to crucify it.” – Unknown

Guys: There’s is a difference between being wrong and being led astray by the mind/ flesh.

Humble yourselves and return to the Father.
Scripture has to be read in the correct light.

The way I have been rebuked by the Spirit in the past couple of days. 😶
Makes me look back and think “what was I thinking?”

And that’s exactly the problem.

“Don’t operate from a place of feeling or thinking, but operate from a place of knowing.” – @MrVitoSpeaks

From my thinking, I had made excuses. From my feelings, I had acted on impulse.

Not good at all. #LessonLearnt
Ephesians 4: 17 for all who have fallen and haven’t realised.

Forgive us Lord!

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Gentiles walk in the futility of their minds!

Who is more knowledgeable, us or the Almighty?

Keep your light burning. If you don’t, people won’t see the way; you will be lost in the dark.

This is not for posting’s sake.

We treat the word of God as the tree of knowledge when it is the tree of life.

Knowledge = Information 

Life = For Living 

Information acquisition is passive when it is not APPLIED.
Anyone can read/study the word of God.

Are you doing it for knowledge or are you doing it to live?
The Apostles caught the revelation and did something with it. The gospel is now shared across the world.

All recorded in the book of ACTS

They caught the Revelation and they Acted.

Please learn from my mistake, my brothers and sisters. We are in the battle between the flesh and the spirit. The stronger one will be the one you feed more.

Read the word, apply it and live.

Tunde. T Amao

Ps: if you find yourself overthinking and retreat into your mind please be aware that this one form of escapism; entering the realm of thought and not being present in the now. Please search within yourself or with mentors and make practical steps to ensure that you are HERE rather than elsewhere.

The word of God says not to worry. Can any of us add an hour to our lives by worrying? (Matt 6: 25-27) Let us commit to spending the time to work in today, for today and plan and prepare for tomorrow. Amen.

The Misconceptions of Man

 

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My brothers,

This topic is very dear to my heart and I could not wait to share this with you. I will explain why in a later post, but earlier I shared that we are going through a crisis in masculinity. There are many reasons that we probably can think of, but I truly believe that at some point, somewhere in our lives we have been deceived.

Yes, there is a crisis, because we as men have been deceived to what masculinity actually is.

We have looked at films, TV shows, discussions amongst our peers and have used that as benchmarks to achieve masculinity.

I will be sharing scripture as well as my own experience, research and from various conversations that I have heard and engaged in. These are the few misconceptions that are prevalent or have come across and I honestly pray that this message will reach the hearts of those who are promoting the misconceptions without even knowing.

MISCONCEPTION #1 – REAL MEN HAVE BEARDS

This is one of the recent trends that I have noted. Beards do have some input in making a guy look more masculine, especially towards the females, (who are probably nodding their heads in agreement) but unfortunately, the appeal towards guys having beards often has a negative backlash when a beard has been cut or removed.

Not to mention men who have found themselves following this trend to grow a beard just to attract women and those who sadly have questioned their own masculinity because they can’t grow a beard.

MISCONCEPTION #2 – REAL MEN ARE 6ft +

During my transition from college to university years where I was reading about male and female communication, I made it my business to obtain the feminine perspective on relationships and the like. The main reason being, that I have been a victim of this point of rhetoric. In fact, I still don’t quite understand this point. Forgive me if I am wrong, but my natural thought towards this area is that women would like to look up to their male and feel protected as they look out for them, and the added height gives them the advantage. Also, the fact that a male who is shorter than an ideal height, or even shorter than her will almost make the female not want to take the male seriously. In other words, the conversation ends when 5 foot something is mentioned…

Whether that is true or not remains to be seen. However, we are all fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139: 13 -16) and made in the image of God Himself (Genesis 1: 27), in other words, males (and females) did not choose the families they were born, the neighbourhoods they grew up in, their body shape or their height.

Men, your height or beard has nothing to do with you being a man. For those who have felt some kind of way because of these misconceptions, let this be a principle to take home:

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Disclaimer: My brothers. This is not a call to escape from responsibility. If you are made to feel a certain way about things that you KNOW you have the capacity to change, then you better do it – quickly! There is strength in the grace of God!

MISCONCEPTION #3 –  MEN HAVE TO “MAN UP”

Lads, you have emotions. You are not called to be lead by them or be controlled by them, but your emotions are indicators of how you are feeling on the inside. It is normal to have and display emotion.

John 11: 35 – Jesus wept.

(The shortest verse in the bible; very memorable and very significant in relation to authentic masculinity.)

Us men, whenever we tend to feel overwhelmed by life, we tend to express our emotions with the one who loves us dearly, our women. It makes sense, to be open and transparent about your frustrations. However, because of our failed relationships, we are afraid to share our emotions or behave like we don’t have any, just to be seen in control from the female’s perspective and to provide ourselves inner comfort to be seen as protecting the relationship.

Of course, that is how we men rationalise it. However, the truth is, you don’t want to share your emotions with your woman because you are afraid of how she may perceive you afterwards. 

Men’s number 1 fear: Being seen as weak in front of their woman and having to deal with the reality that she can choose “stronger” guys out there. 

Then comes the dreaded statement we men have heard, acted upon and discovered that it had caused more harm than good.

“You need to man up!”

We need to recognise that when this sentence is being said, either from men or women, it is usually said out of frustration at the lack of manliness that is almost expected to be displayed.

However, let us be clear on this: anyone who makes you feel less than is probably because they have been led away by general or by their own misconceptions of masculinity themselves.This is where I feel compelled to share statements to both women and to men:

Ladies: Your femininity awakens masculinity. That’s why men become so excited and want to do “manly things” for you. Yes, they make mistakes but don’t make sharp statements out of your frustrations. Trust me on this, but the self-esteem of the man will crumble to a point where they will respond by doing things they think they need to do, just for the sake of doing it, but not from a place of where they actually want to.

Conclusion: The self-esteem of the man is needed to be preserved so that he can be self-confident in responding to the call of man. Attack the self-esteem and you will crumble him to be reactive, not proactive.

Men: True, authentic masculinity is bestowed. Yes, the woman can enable your fire of masculinity to burn within you, but ladies cannot bestow masculinity because they are women. Men bestow masculinity to men (That is why it is important to have a male mentor, a father figure or a good relationship with your earthly fathers). Follow the Way of the Lord, surround yourselves with like-minded men and work so can be ready to answer the call of man. How can you be a man for others when you cannot be a man for yourself

Conclusion: Masculinity comes from within, not from what you do externally. Operate from a place of knowing and focus on being, not doing.

Have you come across any misconceptions that made you think or feel “surely, this can’t be right?” Please feel free to discuss them in the comment section below.

Thank you for reading my brothers, and remember; God created you males because He wants you to become a man through Jesus Christ.

Tunde T. Amao

The Path of Man

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Many speakers have said it, pastors have preached it, the women are fed up with it and you’ve probably seen it, heard it and probably experiencing it right now.

There is a crisis in masculinity.

The young guys today are struggling to become who they are meant to become; Men.

Perhaps it’s the lengthy time spent in boyhood. You’re doing what you can, in a panic, to compensate for lost time. Maybe you’ve found yourself in situations where real life hit you hard and now you’ve woken up and have seen the world in a brand new light. You’ve probably seen other guys, maybe younger than yourselves, getting into places and now you feel like you’ve been left behind.

Or you’ve had your masculinity challenged by the women in your life or they left due to the lack of leadership, direction and maybe the self-confidence to be able to hold a relationship together. You notice a recurring pattern and you don’t know why. They always leave for someone you perceived as “better”.

Or maybe you’ve fallen into the hole of the world’s misconception of men. “Men are supposed to have this, men are supposed to be that, men are supposed to have achieved this by now” is the rhetoric that is spinning in the minds of males. You are now frustrated at the process of “getting to where you need to get to” because of how slow it is.

Or maybe you have that burning question that remains unanswered because you had a poor example of what a real Man looks like.

My brothers, you will never find it in material things, you will never find it in the wrong crowd and trust me, you will never ever find manhood within womanhood.

In the precious name of Jesus Christ, who created you for His pleasure and His glorious purpose, and because He loves you so dearly if you are still looking or you’re not too sure what your purpose in life is, please take this fundamental truth away:

If you are born male, it is your destiny, purpose and life-long goal to become a  strong, confident and capable Man. You did not choose to be born male, God did. That’s His way of showing you that He wants you to become a Man.

And the Ultimate Man, the Perfect Man to follow is Jesus Christ. Your masculinity is rooted in Him.

There are many examples of how you can develop your masculinity in Jesus. Here are a few of many scriptures about what God says about Men and the path He has called them to take:

Genesis 2: 7 (NIV): Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being.

Micah 6: 8 (NKJV): He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God?

Psalm 1: 1 – 3 (NKJV): Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth it’s fruit in its season, who’s leaf also shall not wither; and whatver he does shall prosper.

1 Corinthians 13: 11 (NIV): When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me.

I also commissioned a short pole on my Twitter page. The results are below:

Speaking from the male perspective, men are aware that they have to be focused on something, but often find themselves easily distracted on things that are not necessarily bad but not conducive to their personal progression as wholesome Men or are just simply focused on the wrong things.

The ladies acknowledge that manhood (or the lack of) is an issue and after fruitful discussions, I believe the common conclusion is that women would like the special men in their life to band together and seek guidance from other godly Men.

The knowledge gained from such networks would help them become wholesome Men themselves and in turn, will enable them to be effective in their relationships.

Guys, you are not focused because you don’t have guidance. Once you receive guidance, you’ll become focused.

So, to answer the question, how does one walk the Path of Man?

1. Believe in and follow the Greatest Man who lived, died and rose again; Jesus Christ.

2. Read the Word of God to discover, learn and apply God’s manhood principles in every area of your lives.

3. Seek guidance from (older) godly men.

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Guys, becoming a Man is a lifelong pursuit, and it is not to be rushed. Our physique bares the image of Christ and when we walk in His ways we will surely become Men. It is equally important to walk with others on the same path towards manhood. Why? Scripture gives the answer:

Proverbs 3: 6 (NIV): In all your ways submit to him and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 11: 14 (NLT): Without wise leadership, a nation falls; there is safety in having many advisors.

Genesis 2: 18 (NIV): The Lord God said, “it is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.

Proverbs 13: 20 (NKJV): He who walks with wise men will be wise, but the companion of fools will be destroyed.

We cannot become Men by ourselves.

Peace and love my brothers.

Tunde T. Amao

Men and Women: The Real Relationship – Part 2

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Greetings, brothers and sisters.

We have explored in part one of the model relationship. Now, we’re going to look at the specifics in great detail.

Genesis 2: 24 (NIV) – That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.

This is the foundational scripture that many would use for marriage. Now, pay particular attention to this next point; Marriage is not man-made. It is an institution created by God so that men and women can express their love for each other the way God wanted love to be expressed. As we saw earlier, there is a model, a standard which must be followed for maximum fulfilment in blossoming, loving relationships.

So, why do I say this? If you want a Godly relationship with Godly foundations, you have to do it God’s way; the way He established it and using Godly materials.

Ephesians 5: 31 – 32 (NIV) – For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery, but I am talking about Christ and the church.

The above scripture speaks of the perfect unity of Jesus and the Church (we His people). The marriage relationship or a growing relationship should mirror this exact model. The question now is, what is the relationship between Jesus Christ and the Church, how does it look like and what does it entail? We will look at Ephesians 5: 21 – 27 in greater detail.

EPHESIANS 5: 21 – 27

(Emphasis added and broken down for greater analysis)

Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Wives submit yourselves to your own husband as you do to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife as Christ is head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.

REVERENCE FOR CHRIST AND SUBMISSION

When building anything, the foundation has to be strong enough to hold the extra weight on top. Jesus Christ is the firm foundation (1 Corinthians 3: 11). If one has a sincere reverence for Him, then this aspect will not be a problem. Think about it; would you build ontop of a firm foundation or a shaky one?

Before we touch on the submission aspect, which can ring alarm bells for some, I wanted to touch lightly on this. Submission is not just a biblical woman thing, it applies to men as well. The same way we submit to one another is the same submission that we offer the Lord God Almighty.

In a relationship setting, men who are seeking to become authentic unapologetic men of the Lord God will need to apply their lessons to their submission to God and now tailor that to the chosen lady in their life. There also has to be a healthy boundary as this is more of a process to learn how to submit to their special lady as opposed to the full submission in the context of scripture which is reserved for Husbands and Wives only. Use this opportunity to learn how to submit to her lads!

BE WARNED: HEALTHY BOUNDARIES PROTECT. YOUR BOYFRIEND SHOULD NOT BE LEADING YOU ANYWHERE. YOUR GIRLFRIEND SHOULD NOT BE SUBMITTING TO YOU. THIS IS RESERVED ONLY FOR HUSBANDS AND WIVES.

WIVES SUBMISSION TO HUSBAND

Ladies, as mentioned in the above paragraph and taking what we learnt in the first post into consideration, I’d like to share a small analogy:

Jesus Christ is the husband. The Church is His wife. Imagine you are the Church now, your name is now Church. Jesus is your husband. What do you know about Jesus?

Jesus walks with integrity, loving, forgiving, compassionate and has a no-nonsense attitude when it comes to His Father’s business. Has an epic prayer life, doesn’t deny His emotions, but manages and expresses it appropriately, can protect you, encourage you, has a vision for His life and can lead you to a place He knows you can feel safe, secure and allowed to be who you are meant to be; yourself.

He knows your not perfect; He knows your flaws and loves you because of them and He encourages you gently to be the best version of yourself and will celebrate you along the way. Now, he may correct you in a loving way because He does not delight in anything that disrespects Him or any matter that involves His Heavenly Father and will fight passionately for the matters of God because that is where He gets His strength, worth and identity from. A man who is not ashamed of His Father and will continue to walk His way because He loves God that much.

Would you submit to such a man?

Now imagine a man, who isn’t Jesus, but is striving to have the same qualities, the same mindset, the same emotional disposition as Him. Who is constantly in the Word and can teach and encourage you and sees you for being YOU. He knows He isn’t perfect and will make mistakes from time to time, but knows as long as he follows Jesus, he will be led in the right way.

This is what means to be in submission to a man as on to the Lord. The man must display lord-like qualities, and it must be seen and evidenced, from the inside and out. That’s the man worth submitting to.

HUSBANDS TO LOVE THEIR WIVES

Lads, back to you again.

Jesus Christ gave His life to redeem the Church. He died so that the Church may dwell in the righteousness of Him. He knows that the Church is not perfect, hence why He always teaches the Church to dwell and grow in His Word, where they can find rest, comfort, security and strength.

It is not easy for women. The way the world is set up now, they have to make the extra effort to advance themselves and protect themselves from any hindrances as well as deal with their emotions with or without support. Women are blessed with creativity and the ability to multi-task; once they have a mission, they will complete it. I believe that even when women are tired, they still have to find that inner strength and resolve to push forward to get to where they want to get to.

Imagine juggling so many responsibilities and not feeling appreciated for their efforts.

Men, Jesus Christ died so that the Church can be restored, uplifted and placed on the path of righteousness. Jesus gave His all in the name of love.

My brothers, beware! Look at what scripture says:

Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.

There are alarm bells when a lady claims to love God, claims Christ and does not submit to Him. If she doesn’t submit herself to Him, how much more you?

Benchmark principle: How the male/female submitted to God is a clear indication as to how they can submit to you.

There are so many elements here, but the general message here is that you don’t take away from people you love. As men, respect the advancement of women and continue to add to that so that they may grow in self-confidence, joy and peace When they are tired and weary, be ready and available to step in and to pour love, attention, affection and strength into them so they can rise up and continue on their path towards greatness.

Women are going through battles we have no idea of. Pay attention and love them for who they are. They can only be themselves and you have to recognise and acknowledge that.

I want to stress again that this is in the context of cultivating a successful relationship. This will enable you to discover more about God’s standard in relationships as well as discover more about yourself and the person you’re growing with. Full submission only happens in a marriage relationship.

As women, remember that men also go through battles. They may not speak on them, they may not say due to the resurrection of hurt and pain, or maybe they are afraid of how you will view them afterwards. Some men do what to become the standard where they feel they ought to be, and place pressure on themselves to perform. Truth be told, this pressure they put on themselves, plus the pressure you may have placed on him, the mind can only take so much. Plus, most men do not want to hear about another man’s capabilities, especially that they know within themselves that they are trying and trying very hard.

One cannot, and will not, value full submission if one has not resolved in being willfully submitted to God, through Jesus Christ, first.

I’ve hinted the ladies above (I hope you got it ladies!) and as well as the men, (keep your eyes peeled bro! it’s not all about beauty and favour! (Proverbs 31:30)

Tunde T. Amao

Men and Women: The Real Relationship – Part 1

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Hello, my brothers and sisters.

I had to share this post. So much so, that this will be a three-part series as I would like us to take our time and to make sure that we understand what we are about to explore.

From reading various articles, books and hearing a few sermons and, most importantly reading the Bible, something jumped at me. It made me look at the nature of relationships differently. It is counter-cultural and to be honest, it is expected; we are talking about Kingdom principles here.

In short, we have lost sight of what a real relationship between man and woman looks like; the way the Lord God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, has created and established.

I will be painting a picture. All I ask is for the Holy Spirit to move and to help me teach this foundational principle.

Let us begin.

THE TRINITY

The Trinity is very difficult to describe. The Lord has revealed Himself in three, but He is One. Make no mistake, and place particular attention to what I write next: We serve one God. The One who created the Earth. The Everlasting Father; The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He has revealed Himself, in three; God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.

The closest (not exact, but close) example we can use is water. Water comes in three forms; Water as a liquid (drinking water), solid (ice) and gas (vapour). These are three forms of water, but they are still water, just in different states.

I say it is a close example because God doesn’t come in three states, which imply three individual separate beings of matter. God revealed himself in three, but He is One. He is ONE and we serve One God.

God has revealed himself in this manner as we see in Scripture (emphasis added) :

Genesis 1: 2 (NIV) – In the Beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the water.

John 1: 1 (NIV) – In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.

The “He” is referred to the Word. Who is the Word you say?

John 1: 14 (NIV) – The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

We have the Father, the Son; Jesus, and God’s Spirit; the Holy Spirit revealed. The perfect unity. God revealed in three; One God.

ADAM AND EVE

As we see in the Book of Genesis, God created the world, the animals and then mankind. Please notice something here; with everything God created (and saw that it was good), there is ONE thing that God saw that was not good: the fact that Man was alone.

Genesis 2: 18 (NIV) – The Lord God said, ‘It is not good for man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.’

God loves us. He loves us all. The Bible declares that God is love in 1 John 4: 8: Whoever does not love, does not know God because God is love. In a nutshell, God being love created mankind so He could express that love to us. God expressed that love by Creating man. Seeing that man was made in His image and harbours His qualities, the fact that Adam did not have anything to express his love to is why God created Eve from Adam.

God reached into His Spirit and Created man. He placed the spirit of man into the Male. God saw that the male did not have anything to love, so just like He pulled the spirit of man out of Himself, God pulled out the Male’s rib and used it to create the Female, being the object of the males love, just like God made man (the spirit) the object of His love. The spirit is both in Males and Females because ultimately the Spirit came from Him.

This is why in the deepest areas in the heart of Men wishes for a Woman to pour out his love to her. This is why in the deepest areas in the heart of Women, wishes to be loved by a man.

But look around you. In the name of finding love, many people have gone through terrible ordeals. I don’t need to mention it, you have gone through, or know of someone who had gone through something terrible. Hearts are being broken and are being broken again and again and again. Lust has crept into the hearts of mankind and many people are feeling drained and constantly tired of having their love thrown away or not being reciprocated.

Look at the Trinity. Look at how God in His love had created man and out of man, woman. There is a process, a pattern, a shape; a model.

A real relationship isn’t between two people.

It’s between three.

[Part two]

Tunde T. Amao