This blog post refused to be written in a hurry. Rightly so, it is my hundredth post since I started blogging in November 2011.
I spent five days last week in the hospital undergoing a 6-month post-surgery checkup. Yes, indeed it is six months since I had the life threatening open-chest surgery. My God is truly awesome and worthy of my praise. Tried as hard as I did, I just could not get the post finalized in time for posting on Thursday. Do bear with me.
My second son, DE, was 5 years old and had been ill on and off for a period of time. So I took with me on a trip from Tamale to
Accra, where I was
scheduled to attend a series of meeting at the Country office, to see a UN
staff doctor for a checkup. After the consultation with the doctor, I left him
in the care of my colleague while I attended my meetings. My colleague gave DE
sheets of paper to draw on and colour to keep him occupied. He sketched a number of
what appeared to be long and tapering objects and coloured the tips red. When
asked what he had drawn, DE promptly responded, “Mummy’s fingers and long
nails.” Well, I took good care of my fingers and kept well-manicured nails. His
agro was that I kept my nails long while I insisted on having his nails cut.
Over ten years later, in April/May 2013, I suffered from severe oxygen deprivation at the extremities (my feet and hands) and also had renal failure. A short while after I regained consciousness, I noticed changes on my nails. They were discoloured, some were deformed, a couple had fallen off and some had what looks like blood clot under the nail. There was also a dark band and indentation across the nails.
|With dark band|
As my fingers became re-oxygenated, they recovered and a new season of refreshing came upon the nails. During the last 4 months, I observed that as the nails grew, the dark bands moved up and after sometime, the part of the nail above the dark bands literally separated along the line above the bands and in some cases while the upper part was still attached to the nail bed, causing a lot of discomfort.
Despite the extremely difficult circumstances my nails were subjected, they struggled to grow again because the living part of the nail was active. The dark bands have almost reached the tip of my fingers. Soon it will be a figment of my memory that they have once experienced a season of darkness.
In Biology, we were taught that all living beings exhibit seven characteristics. Among these are movement, growth and reproduction. Everything that has life must grow, move and reproduce. Nothing that God created with life is expected to be static or stagnant. Man was created to be an active creature.
There was a time that the earth was without form and void, and darkness covered the deep. It laid in waste, empty and chaotic, and was shrouded in thick darkness. Then came a spark of hope. God did something about it (Gen. 1:2).
Because emptiness and chaos is not of God, He is not an Author of confusion. The Bible recorded that the Spirit of God moved upon the waters. And God began to speak things into existence—“Let there be…” He made some things— the sun, moon and the stars. He created some things—great creatures of the sea, every living and moving things and He created man (Gen1:2-28).
He blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply/increase in number.”
At one time or the other, we will experience seasons of darkness in our lives - periods when things go wrong in different spheres of our lives, when we are treated unfairly or unjustly, and periods of trials and tests, of insufficiency and lack, and of troubles – spiritual, physical and emotional. These leave dark bands across the landscape of our lives.
Perhaps, you have dreamt dreams and nurtured great desires in your heart, and the fulfilment looks bleak
Or you have been sitting on the same spot for years waiting for a breakthrough in a particular area of your life and it is not forthcoming.
Or you have been going around the same mountain for so long.
What do we do at such times?
Put our hands over our heads, and our heads upon our knees, moaning and wailing?
Make a move - Let it be God-directed:
David was a man who had many seasons of darkness in his life. Let’s take a look at one of them described in 1 Sam. 30. He and his men returned from following Achish to fight against
Israel. He was rejected by Achish.
When they got back to Ziklag, they found that their wives, sons and daughters
were carried away by the Amalekites and their homes burnt down. They had lost
What was their reaction?
They lifted up their voices and wept until they had no strength to weep anymore (vs. 4). Whilst his men remained bitter, angry and full of grief, David took an action to address his situation.
First, he encouraged himself in the Lord his God – he found strength in God (vs. 6b).
Second, he enquired from the Lord what steps he should take to deal with the situation – he sought God’s direction and leading.
God gave him clear instructions and in addition, He gave him an assurance of victory — “Pursue: for you shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all.”
There will be times we will walk through the valley of the shadow of death, times we will pass through deep waters, and times we will walk through fire (Ps. 23:4, Is. 43:2). The key word is THROUGH. We walk and pass through difficult and dark seasons. We are not expected to stay static and rooted there. We must at such times turn towards God, be encouraged and find strength in Him, and seek His face for instructions – What shall I do in this situation?
Time to be Active and Creative:
Wait in His presence until you get clear instruction AND take the necessary steps to move forward! Growth and movement requires effort, time and other resources but above all, it takes willingness and determination to move and not remain static or stagnant.
What is holding you rooted to the same spot?
Usually, it is fear. The enemy uses fear like a shackle to pin us down, to hold us back and to limit our movement. Fear paralyses and keeps us static and stagnant.
Sometimes it is fear of failure. It could be fear of rejection, of being refused or even fear of death. Fears whispers doubt and disbelief into our hearts – maybe God’s word will not be fulfilled in this case. But let me give you this assurance: God’s words are effective. His words are not idle. They always accomplish the purpose for which they have been sent forth and will never return to Him void. God will do what He says He will do. He will never go back on His word or renege on His promises.
God’s grace is also abundantly available and sufficient to move us away from the spot to which we have been rooted.
When God, the Trinity, created mankind in their image, He put in us the ability to relate with the Holy Spirit. He, as our teacher and counsellor, broods over us and brings creative and purposive life out of our chaos and makes a ministry out of our mess. Also, because we are created in God’s image, God’s creative ability is at work in us to make us creative like our Creator.
God has created us to be active. He created us to be productive, to increase and to grow. He created us to be creative. Sometimes growth may mean for us a deeper spiritual maturity, which we are all called to attain in Christ.
He did not create us to be static or stagnant or idle or to live in fear.
Dear Friends, it is time to move from this spot where you have remained static and stagnant, and from the spot you've been held down in fear. You have encompassed this mountain long enough. It is time to follow God’s leading and instructions if you want to fulfill your destiny and possess what God has ordained for you for a possession (Deut. 1: 35 – 2:9).
Today, is the day to take action. Let it be God oriented, directed and guided.