This week Africa Renewal Ministries is celebrating 20 years of our existence and when we look back, we are amazed of the great things God has done. We have gone through a lot of challenges but God has helped us to overcome. We have a lot to thank God for.
Below is a message about what to do at half time. I am talking about half time because we at Africa Renewal Ministries have walked a journey and we have reached somewhere. How we respond at this time, determines how the next 20 years of ministry will look like. In the same vein all of us have our individual lives that we live, some of us have a ministry where we serve God.
May this message therefore help you and encourage you to prepare for the next phase of your life and ministry.
JUDGES 7: EBENEZER
And when the Philistines heard that the children of Israel were gathered together to Mizpeh, the lords of the Philistines went up against Israel. And when the children of Israel heard it, they were afraid of the Philistines. 8 And the children of Israel said to Samuel, Cease not to cry unto the LORD our God for us, that he will save us out of the hand of the Philistines. 9 And Samuel took a sucking lamb, and offered it for a burnt offering wholly unto the LORD: and Samuel cried unto the LORD for Israel; and the LORD heard him. 10 And as Samuel was offering up the burnt offering, the Philistines drew near to battle against Israel: but the LORD thundered with a great thunder on that day upon the Philistines, and discomfited them; and they were smitten before Israel. 11 And the men of Israel went out of Mizpeh, and pursued the Philistines, and smote them, until they came under Bethcar. 12 Then Samuel took a stone, and set it between Mizpeh and Shen, and called the name of it Ebenezer, saying, Hitherto hath the LORD helped us.
Defining moments in our lives.
God orchestrates or allows moments, seasons and encounters in our lives for a reason. Someone calls them WOW experiences.
Some of these are very tough, horrible, terrifying experiences where God just saves by a thread of time. Where you say; if it was not for God, I could not make it.
Some of these are very high, exciting moments in life where it is too good to be true.
Some of these are where God takes away the very things, the very person you have been putting your trust in, the very job you depended on, anything or anyone and all of a sudden you find yourself holding on to God and God alone.
Sometimes it is a long season where it is as though heaven is silent, it as though you are in a desert.
There is a tendency for man to forget. We have tendency to relax, we have tendency to think we are the ones who have done it.
A song of ascents.
1 When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion,
we were like men who dreamed.
2 Our mouths were filled with laughter,
our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
“The LORD has done great things for them.”
3 The LORD has done great things for us,
and we are filled with joy.
4 Restore our fortunes, O LORD,
like streams in the Negev.
5 Those who sow in tears
will reap with songs of joy.
6 He who goes out weeping,
carrying seed to sow,
will return with songs of joy,
carrying sheaves with him.
THANKSGIVING (entansiima ebula agiwa)
PRAISE (It is giving a testimony of what he has done
WORSHIP (worship helps us to let God know it is Him and not us, it is not by our power that we have what we have)
GIVING (giving back as a sign of saying thank you
THE 12 STONES AT GILGAL
19 Now the people came up from the Jordan on the tenth day of the first month, and they camped in Gilgal on the east border of Jericho. 20 And those twelve stones which they took out of the Jordan, Joshua set up in Gilgal. 21 Then he spoke to the children of Israel, saying: “When your children ask their fathers in time to come, saying, ‘What are these stones?’ 22 then you shall let your children know, saying, ‘Israel crossed over this Jordan on dry land’; 23 for the Lord your God dried up the waters of the Jordan before you until you had crossed over, as the Lord your God did to the Red Sea, which He dried up before us until we had crossed over, 24 that all the peoples of the earth may know the hand of the Lord, that it is mighty, that you may fear the Lord your God forever.”
Psalms 90:12“Teach us to number our days right,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom. ”
MARK YOUR GAINS
GET SOMETHING THAT WILL REMIND YOU
GENESIS 28:16Then Jacob woke up and said, “Surely the LORD is in this place, and I wasn’t even aware of it.” 17 He was afraid and said, “What an awesome place this is! It is none other than the house of God—the gateway to heaven!” 18The next morning he got up very early. He took the stone he had used as a pillow and set it upright as a memorial pillar. Then he poured olive oil over it. 19 He named the place Bethel—“house of God”—though the name of the nearby village was Luz.
Genesis 32: 30Jacob named the place Peniel—“face of God”—for he said, “I have seen God face to face, yet my life has been spared.”
31The sun rose as he left Peniel, and he was limping because of his hip.
It helps the next generation to know the power of our God.
It is a testimony to God’s goodness
In hard times you are reminded of God’s acts
Whenever you speak the names, Faith is ignited for the next level of achievement.
III. LOOK AHEAD
Hebron Given to Caleb
Joshua 14: 6
6 Now the men of Judah approached Joshua at Gilgal, and Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite said to him, “You know what the LORD said to Moses the man of God at KadeshBarnea about you and me. 7 I was forty years old when Moses the servant of the LORD sent me from KadeshBarnea to explore the land. And I brought him back a report according to my convictions, 8 but my brothers who went up with me made the hearts of the people melt with fear. I, however, followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly. 9 So on that day Moses swore to me, ‘The land on which your feet have walked will be your inheritance and that of your children forever, because you have followed the LORD my God wholeheartedly.’
10 “Now then, just as the LORD promised, he has kept me alive for forty-five years since the time he said this to Moses, while Israel moved about in the desert. So here I am today, eighty-five years old! 11 I am still as strong today as the day Moses sent me out; I’m just as vigorous to go out to battle now as I was then.12 Now give me this hill country that the LORD promised me that day. You yourself heard then that the Anakites were there and their cities were large and fortified, but, the LORD helping me, I will drive them out just as he said.”
1. Caleb remembered God’s promise
2. Caleb was not contented.
3. At 85 Caleb still believed there was more territory to be won.
4. He went to the very place of the giants, who frightened his partners in the past.
Pressing on Toward the Goal
12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
We have a tendency to relax as people of God. We say I have fought so much, worked so hard, I am tired.
There is a better day coming.
Many people try so much in life to be and do things in life, but they reach a time and give up. Do not give up.
Is there anything more than what you have already achieved. YES
Do not settle for less
Believe god for more
1. You are Challenged to arise, take on the challenge
2. Cease the moment, look at the opportunities that God has brought your way
3. See the positive in the negative.
4. God has promised to provide. When we look beyond ourselves we see miracles of provision and supply