Monday, February 28, 2011


Then he dreamed still another dream and told it to his brothers, and said, “look, I have dreamed another dream. And this time, the sun, the moon, and the eleven stars bowed down to me.”
Genesis 37:9

When it comes to life and purpose, God shows you the big picture, hands you the paintbrush and colors on palette. He then motions with His hand and says “Paint!”
Attaining success isn’t somewhat as difficult as it is to maintain it. The stories abound of quite a number of celebrities and other public figures who have come into limelight for a while and then like a puff of smoke, they dissolve into obscurity whilst the hype of their once budding notoriety becomes history. The bane of most of such celebrities has always been the lack of drive to build on the success attained thus far and seeing it as a stepping stone and not a resting point. It is said that money doesn’t make a man but rather reveals who he is. We don’t attain only to what we want sometimes but also to who we are. We can’t become more than we see ourselves becoming. The enemy of better is not bad but good and the enemy of the best is better. Whatever we have achieved or success we have attained, there is still room for more. Failure is never ending and success is never final. Apostle Paul, in exhorting the Philippians, made them understand the need to keep pressing toward the mark. (Phil.3:14).

The first time Joseph dreamt, his brothers hated him the more. Their initial hatred came as a result of the favor he received from their father. The second time he dreamt however, they envied him. This was an indication that they now believed the dream because as was the case later when Pharaoh dreamt, a second time was a confirmation of the first one he had received and an affirmation that God would surely do it.

Joseph went on to be sold into slavery on account of his dreams yet he never allowed the dream to wane. Temporary setbacks are just that – temporary. It’s risky to make permanent solutions to temporary situations. If he had given up on his dream while in Potiphar’s house, he would have concurred to the advances of his master’s wife. His chaste showed that he knew deep within him that where he was didn’t look like where he was going. Not even the promise of material wealth or benefits could match with the exceeding glory ahead. The popular song “Shout to the Lord” has a line that we need to hang our hopes on such that when we are faced with difficulties, we can affirm to the Lord that “nothing compares to the promise I have in you”.

It’s not over until you win. Keep on living, keep on winning, and keep on dreaming. The sky isn’t the limit, it’s a starting point.


Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it.
1st Cor. 9:24

While in secondary school, we generally looked forward to the inter-house sports competitions. It was always an avenue for thrill and excitement. We anticipated what house would take home the trophy and gave our all in preparation and training to be the best.
In my house, there was a particular guy who was somewhat inept academically but adept on the field. His height was an advantage to his being in the junior class and his competing on that level was akin to a sure win. However, in one of the preliminary races for the big event, we lost the race because he dropped the baton during the relay exchange. The rules didn’t care if he was the best guy or not. All teams had the level ground of the guiding regulations to operate from.

An athlete who refuses to play by the rules will never get anywhere (2nd Tim. 2:5b - MSG).

Maintain your lane:
When the athletes run in a 100M dash, they are required to do so within the confines of the lanes designated for them. Likewise, we are called to different aspects of ministry in the body of Christ. We are soldiers called to march in our own column; vessels made to function in our assignment. (Joel 2:8, 1st Cor. 12:11).

Maintain Unity:
If an athlete jumps the gun, the race has to be restarted. The place of unity in the Body of Christ cannot be overemphasized. Everything follows an order. We must be sure we are called to do what we are doing and not merely moving at the dictates we made for ourselves. God is a respecter of no man and He is still in the business of changing vessels that prove unstable and out of order. At the end of the event, the athletes are to show the spirit of sportsmanship and rejoice with one another regardless of tribe, race or nationality. (Psalm 133:1, 1st Cor. 14:40)

Maintain your Sanctity:
Some time ago, the gold medal was retrieved from a world record holder because she confessed of using steroids. You cannot use the wisdom of the world and expect kingdom results. Whatever God cannot give you, you honestly don’t need it. God will not give you an assignment that would make you independent of him.

Maintain your Identity:
All athletes know they are the embodiment of the country they represent. When performing, the rest of the country watching from home expects them to return with the trophy. If successful, the president of the country welcomes them in grand style. As ambassadors of God’s kingdom here on the earth, the cloud of witnesses are cheering us on to victory. “Welcome, good and faithful servant” will be the words from our Lord at the end of life’s race to those who win. (Hebrews 12:1-2, Matt. 25:21, 1st Cor. 4:2)


But command Joshua, and encourage him and strengthen him; for he shall go over before this people, and he shall cause them to inherit the land which you will see.
Deut. 3:28

The feats of man can be quite enthralling. Take the Olympics for example, where people of different nations of the world come together to compete. Quite a number of the events are enlightening but one in particular which I think is very significant and indeed similar to our lives as believers, is the 400M race in the track and field category of events. It’s unlike the 100M dash which requires much grit and forte from start to finish. The 400M race requires endurance and consistency from the athletes. Not many who start quickly and strongly finish that way. It is a true depiction of Solomon’s words that the race is not to the swift or the battle to the strong (Eccl. 9:11). So also in the Christian race, we require endurance in the race as we press toward the mark. In the 400M race, the runners finish at the premise of their starting point. When they are running on the track, they already have a picture in their mind of how the finish line looks like. They can see the end from the beginning; they know their destination before they depart.
“I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out – plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. (Jer. 29:11 MSG)”
God is committed to bringing our expectation to fulfillment but we must prospect and expect it. A pregnant woman is called an expectant mother because she is carrying life on the inside of her. Before the child is born, she makes preparations based on the child she’s expecting. She purchases clothes and all else not because she has seen the baby physically but because the baby is already born in her mind. Her believe in the baby’s soon coming existence makes the baby’s presence so real, it’s tangible to her.
What you believe is what you see and what you see is what you get. If you can think it, you can touch it. What you can think about and thank about, you can bring about. What God says about us in the word are not mere promises, they are prophecies. They are not things He plans on doing sometime in the future but things He has done before time that we will see in its time (Eccl. 3:11). When life doesn’t seem to go the way you plan, fast forward to the moment in time when you already have the things you desire. Visionaries live in the future while in the present.
We are called believers; it’s time we began to live up to our names.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want,
He grants me rest from my weary pant.
In quietness, He brings me salvation,
His Word gives me insight via meditation.
With His mighty hands, He leads me along,
In every wave and storm, I have a song;
Singing it boldly that I have a God,
Who has great respect for His Word.
He is the covenant keeping Father,
I love Him dearly and seek no other.
Before the world began, He appointed me,
He had declared that His prophet, I’ll be.
Thus, though I walk through the valley of death’s shadow,
The brow of His guidance for me will never furrow.
Should I falter like the wave of the sea,
His rod and staff then comforts me.
Chastising me back to His will,
Knowing Him as God by being still.
Afterwards, if I go hungry,
He sets me a table before the enemy.
His poured holy oil flows from my head,
Making me the enemy’s dread.
Looking behind me, I see grace and mercy,
Following me patiently, never in a hurry.
I therefore give myself to God my father,
Dwelling in His presence as a son forever.

‘Bayor Martins © October 2002