The Quest for Purpose: The Will of God (with a twist of marriage)

A few days ago, I had a discussion with a friend and spiritual brother, “Shakes”… oh sorry, he is officially known as Daniel Asumadu, yet others call him “Ega” but he prefers to be called Korku Ndo. Whichever you decide on to call him, one thing was certain; part of our discussion bordered on the will of God.

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The will of God is quite an interesting topic especially if it is in relation to the woman you are to marry as a man. And though today’s discussion will not go in-depth on the subject of marriage, I think marriage will be the point of reference for our discussion. I had to learn much of this the hard way (through experience) but my discussion with “Shakes” was instrumental in my categorization.

I believe that the purpose of God for our life is made up of the building blocks of his will for various aspects of our life. That is, for an Extraordinary gentleman (and with appreciation to all the wonderful ladies who read our posts) the general purpose of God for your life is made up of the building blocks of his will, including the will of God in your Marriage, his will in your Ministry and his will in your Money. Your purpose, I believe, is also just one building block of his general purpose of creation, which I belief is the Glory and Pleasure of God (Eph 1:5-11, Re 4:11). His purpose for your life is as little as just one building block so that you might not boast, but rest assured that the block was so important it was worth the death of his son, who himself is the chief Corner block or stone.

There is a lot to be discussed about purpose and will, I pray the Lord gives us the permission to continue next week, however going back to the marriage for example, I will like to tell you the crux of today’s discussion in a few words.
The will of God in every situation consists mainly of three parts, the declared will (what), the action plan (how, who, where) and the timing (when).

For example, if you ask God about the woman he would love you to marry,
He might reveal to you in one of the many ways he speaks to you; vision, dream, discernment, prophecy etc., and then you might have a confirmation from other sources or rely totally on the witness in your spirit.
However, many of us then begin building the appropriate strategy to implement God’s will. Usually we might start reading some posts or books like “how to make a woman fall in love with you” or may be, “33 strategies of war”. Then talk to a few people with “vast” experience and when we feel ready launch the much awaited attack, we do so after two “long days” of careful planning (forgive my exaggeration but I hope that wasn’t true in your case).
Now the major point, the next time we seek the will of God; remember his action plan and his timing are as equally important as the declared will of God.

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Pardon me to say this, but I think when it comes to action plans God’s most famous action plan is “Wait” a.k.a “just follow my steps” and His most famous timing is this, “my own time” a.k.a “not now”. So why “under the heavens” did He tell me her name, especially knowing it will take three years to come to pass and the fact that she is that beautiful. Well, I think it is because you asked, maybe we should ask first whether it is his will for us to know her NOW.
However, there are times when God Almighty tells you what to do and when it will all be accomplished and if you have that, do not hesitate, prayerfully follow the plan of action and timing of God. If the answer is wait or not now, be sure to be PATIENT, and watch Gods eternal plan unfold before your very eyes. Remember that no matter how things begin to turn out concerning the declared will of God, all things are working for your good (Rom. 8:28)(even if another seems to have her now).

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Blessed day, and be sure we would love you to share your experience on this issue or any of our discussions on this blog. Your comments are most welcomed.

Related articles
The Quest for Purpose: Your Desires
The Quest for Purpose: Your Strengths
overview of christian marriage

How to fight with your wife: like a Christian

One thing that has always “scared” me has been the fact that someday, as a man, I might have to experience a not so beautiful part of the one I love as a wife and will be faced with the inevitable choice of speaking or acting, what do I do?

I must confess that I tried to write this article once but I got stuck on the way, however, ideas form Dan Benson’s book “The Total Man” has helped, so I modified and adapted the title of that chapter of his book since I had not decided the title of the article by then.

Going back to the point I was making in the first paragraph, I don’t know if you share the dilemma or have experienced it already? But what do you do in such a situation. As an Extraordinary Gentleman, the only way you are permitted to do anything is by employing the most excellent way. Even when it has to do with fighting (arguing, no blows allowed!) with your wife, you have to fight excellently. Don’t get me wrong, I wish I could believe in a marriage without disagreements and without anything that will cause me to wonder “why under the heavens did I marry this woman!”, but I hear it is inevitable. Like a friend of mine who got married 9 months ago told me,(and I am paraphrasing) it is not easy to live together with a woman when the two of you grew up under totally different conditions, sometimes even the way she eats can be irritating.

I believe that the following guides might help in pursuing and excellent path towards conflict resolutions. But first,

Prepare for the fights,

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I don’t mean the boxing gloves or a sharp cutlass, not even looking forward for a fight but know that it will come and therefore weaken its effect by:
1. Recognizing that some days she will forget her “Makeup”: all of us have a “weight” or “sin” that easily beset us and though we might work every day to reduce or eliminate it, patience and time are investments that must be made. You are not perfect either and that is one reason why you must expect to be offended especially by the one you are likely to spend the most of your private time with.
2. Talking everything out: don’t try to tolerate or wait to see if she will change on her own, maybe she does not even know she is hurting you. Tell her everything as plain as possible but say it in love (speaking the truth in love Eph. 4:15) and gentleness, the aim is not to tell her how wrong she is but how better the marriage will be when the fault is minimized or eliminated. As much as possible don’t store up any issue otherwise, it will blow up nastily one day. However, be sensitive to the time and manner in which you raise the issue for discussion, at least, never discuss it in public even in form of a joke. When the fight becomes inevitable, make the fight safe by
3. Making rules for the fights: not the type of rules that determines who wins the fight, but rather the kind of rules that make sure that no one wins the fight. The only one ever permitted to win a fight between a married couple is the two of them, after all the two shall become one. Examples of rules could include, attacking the problem, not the person, no calling of names (especially in public or before the kids), No accusations (you always…, you never…) and of course no blows!.
4. Discussing the results of the fight: find a short period to cool off after every fight, then issues raised during the fight must be discussed most preferably the same day, for do not let the sun go down while you are still angry ( Eph 4:26). Do not assume you already understand what each other said while you were arguing, clarify what each other meant and make resolutions on how to avoid a fight on the same issue.
5. Forgiving each other: forgiveness is a true healer, and the man should be the first to ask for forgiveness, even if the fight was only 1% your fault. After all, you are the head and the leader of the family team and so you must take the initiative. You must also share all that the other said that hurt you so that she can freely ask for forgiveness. And don’t for forget to forget. Don’t raise what you have forgiven as an issue in another fight. Forgive each other just as in Christ God has also forgave you (Eph 4:32)
6. Celebrating your victory over divorce: celebrate each amicable resolution, even if it is with a hug, for the lack of a resolution is the source of dissolution (divorce). Conflict resolution after a fight is an important part of life especially if it has to do with the one you are going to spend the rest of your life with, celebrate the resolution and renew you love towards each other.

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May God grant us the strength to make our marriages a wonderful representation of the love of Christ to the world.

I love your comments and don’t forget to leave the one on your mind, questions are most welcome.

Reference

Benson D. (1977) “The Total Man”. Tyndale house publishers INC, Wheaton, Illinois.

The Neighbour Principle

“You must take reasonable care to avoid acts or omissions which you can reasonably foresee would be likely to injure your neighbour. Who, then, in law, is my neighbour? The answer seems to be persons who are so closely and directly affected by my act that I ought reasonably to have them in contemplation as being affected when I am directing my mind to the acts or omissions which are called in question.”

This statement by Lord Atkin in the seminal case Donoghue v Stephenson (1932), lays an important foundation for our discussion today of the all-important question involving “neighbours”.

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In a fast-passed world where the “breath” of time is constantly in shortage, there is a common tendency of many of us to disregard or better still, give close to no contemplation to consequences that our little actions have on people around us. The world is constantly moving to a point where the only important person is “me” and all things are right as long as “I derive maximum satisfaction”. This selfish mindset seems to be guiding many personal, family and business decisions. No one seems to care about the unknown person that will be affected by our little selfish and self-aggrandising acts. It is like this, our judgement of what is moral seems to increasingly be self-centred, not God or neighbour centred. This I believe is just not “Christian”. Since it is largely the norm to make selfish decisions in the little things we do, it is not surprising that outstanding business and political decisions are made selfishly with only the one company, country, political party or decision maker as the only consideration, this also is not “Christian”.

Since it has become conventional or ordinary to make self-centred decisions, I want to propose the Extraordinary way. Next time you are considering a word or an act (e.g. like a good answer to a “stupid” question or the appropriate dress for a party or church), consider what emotional, psychological, physical or spiritual consequences it will have on anyone close enough to be affected and make all appropriate adjustments. For as the bible says,

For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself (Ga 5:14).

For
Love works no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law (Ro 13:10).
God bless you and have a wonderful day.

Reference
http://www.lawteacher.net/tort-law/essays/neighbour-principle.php

Self-Reflection, the Pivot of Transformation

No man is born perfect and no circumstance remains the same. These are paramount reasons why change is constant. However, no change is necessary unless its effects are important in transforming existing situations. To become and Extraordinary Gentlemen, personal transformation is necessary and self-reflection is the pivot of personal transformation. Today I love to share with you a few thoughts of self-reflection.

Perfect yourself daily, both personally and professionally, until
you become a consummate being, rounding off your gifts and reaching eminence
by Balthazar Gracian

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There exist various periods in the life of a man that he comes to a realization of his current inadequacy in dealing with particular situations. Such a situation usually arises from changes in relation to people around him, institutions or even changes in the man himself. However, as we have many times discussed, no matter the particular situation the man is facing, his circumstance falls into one or more of the three fields of manhood; Ministry (purpose), Marriage and Money (career and finances).

The various inadequacies that a man identifies in his life influence the way he deals people (men, women and children), institutions (society) and invisible forces (divine and devilish) that exists in the three fields of his life. For example a man can discover that his anger problem has become a limitation to his ability to interact with his family, co-workers or even disciples over long period of time without a heated confrontation or two. This problem with anger becomes an inadequacy that affects his effectiveness and efficiency in life and therefore calls for personal transformation. A man who therefore desires to be an Extraordinary Gentleman must be ready to undergo continuous sessions of change or transformation that can be exciting, challenging, boring or painful, but rewarding. As the bible says… let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily beset us…(Hebrews 12:1).

An important process in effecting a personal transformation is self-reflection. We will consider Self-reflection to involve a calm, usually lengthy, conscious consideration of one’s personality or issues that relate directly or indirectly with to him as a person. As Proverbs 14 vrs 8 puts it, the wisdom of the wise is to give thought to his ways. A man must therefore give thought to his ways, considering what has happened, what is happening, what will happen, what should have been happening and what should happen (what he has to do). This process involves identifying, analyzing and making decisions or resolutions on issues in our personal life. A successful pursuit of our resolution is what is important in transforming us into Extraordinary Gentlemen.

I will like to share with you some characteristics and a simple way to do a self-reflection. I hope it helps you in your own process of self- reflection and most importantly, I hope and pray that you pursue without delay every single resolution or decision you make

image source: salesprogress.com

CHARACTERISTICS
Self-reflection must be:
Conscious – it must be a choice and a controlled process, not a time for your mind to wonder around
Truthful- be blatantly honest with yourself, don’t make excuses for yourself (after all, no one is listening
Biblical – all conclusions must have scriptural or spiritual basis
Written – major self-reflection sessions must end up with a written resolution
Implementable – simple, understandable, measurable resolutions.
Prayerful- pray in the beginning (I am usually guilty of this), confess sins and pray for strength to overcome during the process and be thankful in the end.

THE PROCESS

1. Consider your vision for life: (create one if you do not have, and make sure it carries elements of what you want to be in relation to your Marriage, Ministry and Money)
E.g. I want to be a great dad, wonderful husband, outstanding salesman, incredibly spirit-led usher and a loving philanthropist by 2020 onwards. (And the LORD answered me: “Write the vision; make it plain upon tablets, so he may run who reads it” Habakkuk 2:2)

2. Consider your actions in the day or period under review if they align or contradict your vision

3. Tell yourself the truth; humbly congratulate yourself and celebrate victories, but regret and repent from failures, (remember to confess failures that are also sin and ask for strength and will to overcome)

4. Write out failures and corresponding resolutions, especially during major self-reflection moments (remember Habakkuk 2:2 above)

5. Pray for the strength and the will to accomplish your resolution (I usually write my prayer under the resolutions).

6. Go out and bring forth fruits that befitting of your repentance (Matt. 3:8, Luke 3:8)

I hope the Lord Almighty blesses your life through this and give you deeper and relevant understanding. God bless you and remember I cherish your comments and contributions.