Wednesday, March 29, 2017

OUT OF YOUR GOLDEN HEART.


Today as we wrap up on women in ministry, I want to give a special shout out to all mothers, all women that represent the future, you are celebrated. To all the women who work hard to serve in God's vineyard, I truly pray that the Lord our rewarder will bless us indeed!
A special thank you to all my readers around the Globe, you make this page heart warming for me. So much love in my heart for y'all.

I wanted to share something about the heart of man(male and female). The heart is the most important part of the body. It works hard pumping oxygenated blood to and from the valves and arteries to all the parts of the body. Life ceases when the heart stops beating, so you see why it is the most important. 

If you have an idea, it might probably start from the head, but the heart is what will manage the birthing character of its success. Whatever actions we display starts from the heart. Thoughts and emotions are filtered through the heart. Hence, it must be guarded at all cost. One wrong misguided thought in the heart can destroy an entire race.

Women, let's analyze a woman like us, Michal, King Saul's daughter..

“As the ark of the Lord came into the City of David, Michal, Saul's daughter [David's wife], looked out of the window and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord, and she despised him in her heart.”
2 Samuel 6:16 AMPC


The heart is no respecter of persons 😊. Royalty or pauper, everyone has a heart, which makes us very equal. Michal was royalty, but was obviously not privy to how to teach her heart or guide it with pleasantries. Just like her father, Saul, she seemed to have a problem celebrating others. She despised her own husband(I had to pause to think about my husband). Have I ever despised my husband for doing something I am not accustomed to? This is very dangerous! Lord help me and forgive me if I have.

The heart is a place you train hard to focus on good not evil. The heart of man(male and female) is a battle ground. Good and evil battle to prevail per second and without something positive filtering through, the opposite of positive lurks around to take predominance. 

Now verse 20: “Then David returned to bless his household. And [his wife] Michal daughter of Saul came out to meet David and said, How glorious was the king of Israel today, who stripped himself of his kingly robes and uncovered himself in the eyes of his servants' maids as one of the worthless fellows shamelessly uncovers himself!”
2 Samuel 6:20 AMPC

Michal's heart is revealed. She couldn't hide what had taken place in her heart. She had become that thought. Most of the time, we are what we do. Either consciously or unconsciously, we are what we think, say and practically do.
The heart is where God's judgement takes place. He focuses on the choice we make per time. Our choices first takes place in the unseen place, the heart, before it manifests physically. 

Understanding the heart should be everyone's priority, since it is what matters to God.
For me, I have my struggles and sometimes I break down at the thoughts I struggle with. Sometimes, I wonder why they are there in the first place. Like why can't I just be pure? 😭. That question is not as pertinent as the choice as I make though. So, right back to reality!
I used to justify my lash outs because I thought it was better than bearing a grudge in my heart. Half the time, what I say during those lash outs are unrealistic and untrue but they come out anyway and do damages. While it is true that grudges are just as bad, it is still a matter of discipline and training what the heart is permitted to filter through and how we handle the outcome.

Now, take a minute at your desk, or on your bed. Touch your heart and say a prayer for your heart. If you fumbled today, then tomorrow is another day. What you allow into your heart really matters and will dictate your future. 

For Michal: it was a very very sad ending.

“And Michal the daughter of Saul had no child to the day of her death.”
2 Samuel 6:23 AMPC

This is what despising others and hate can do to a person's soul. Some people have suffered and might still suffer the consequences of not guarding their heart to the Light of Love. The heart is our responsibility, not God's. 
Out of our hearts flows the issues of LIFE! Are you doing the guarding daily? 

Selah.

Live, Love, Laugh 

Kemi Gwan. 

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

WOMEN IN MINISTRY - PASTOR DR. MODUPE AKINOLA

There is something powerful about the woman!
 I wanted to take the time out to celebrate another sweet and powerful woman of God in Ministry who has impacted my life, my family and my ministry. Your efforts were never wasted and I say thank you. 


Pastor Dupe, is like a mother to me. She is one of my spiritual mothers and I am her very daughter 😊. Always on the look out to help and celebrate God's gift. Countless times, she goes above and beyond. No wonder she is an excellent Pediatrician. This awesome woman is also married to an awesome Pastor and they have beautiful children. So, once again, she's the entire package and does it excellently. Mentoring women and children by Grace.

Today, I wanted to delve into some lessons learned in my devotion, during the course of the week. In the book of Luke 2, I was able to compare two vital factors. It is possible for you to eat and drink in the sanctuary from all the consecrated bowls and still have no idea who God is, in fact, have zero faith in His word or what He can do and take it for granted. 

Zechariah was a priest who had served God all his life and was so comfortable to the point that when he was finally visited by the Angel Gabriel who stands directly before God to confirm answers to his prayer, he doubted and received a punishment for his doubt/unbelief.
God had to teach him a lesson. Not members of the sanctuary but God himself. Members could clearly see that he was dumb and automatically knew he had encountered God. That alone sent fear into their hearts or humbled them.

But there was a woman, a virgin, a woman named Mary, who would become the mother of our Lord Jesus Christ. In those times, women were not allowed to serve in the temple and were removed far from all priestly duties, but something unique happened in Mary's days. All protocols stood still and the female specie was honored and elevated before God. Think about it. It was kind of a turning point in ministry for all women. 
Women didn't need to be in the temple to receive God's visitation πŸ’ƒπŸ½. She was in fact, visited by the Angel Gabriel. She instantly considered the words in her mind and believed it. She had tremendous faith after hearing it and proceeded to visit her Cousin.
This part made me take a pause, think, sit, spin, dance around in tongues. I wonder what other women were busy doing other than doing chores all the time in their husband's house. But Mary wasn't even in a husband's house and yet she received God's call to service. So, women! Do you get the Memo! 

Both parties (Zechariah in the temple and Mary the handmaiden) were indeed blessed and God's word must be fulfilled, whether  we believe in it or not. When we try to stand in the way with our unbelief and over familiarity, we will receive consequential punishment. When we receive God's word, it is important to position ourselves in faith. 
The difference between men and women, in this case, is very clear. Generally speaking, men are more logical and tend to question the "logic in the supernatural", while women are emotional and believe in  the possibilities of anything. 

As a woman, married or unmarried, you have a role. In your home, married women, your husband is favored because of you. The Lord will always freely speak to you because of your heart especially when your husband cannot receive it. It is important for a woman to seek God's face for her family. This is why the woman holds the home and receives the vision for where the home should be, but the man must take the lead. This explains why women can get frustrated when they don't see the picture of what they think it should look like. This is where patience and endurance comes in. Single women, you are a beacon meant to shine light to others, not just on yourself. Enjoy being favored of God until the right one shows up or nah 😜. No big deal right.



Lesson 1: Do not be quick to judge men/women of God, they are God's chosen and whatever they learn, they learn directly from God. God is capable of either temporarily or permanently punishing them as He deems fit).



Lesson 2: Women are swift to hear and adept to believe words. It is both our strength and weakness. Because of Mary's faith in what the Lord said, she was indeed blessed.

Once again, Pastor Dupe, you are loved and cherished. I celebrate you greatly for the faith you have demonstrated and following God whole heartedly.

Live, Love, Laugh
Kemi Gwan.


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

WOMEN IN MINISTRY - PASTOR DR. MRS TOYIN TOFADE



We are still celebrating Women in Ministry and I am mostly excited about this woman, one I can confidently call Mentor. My Pastor and Pastor's wife. A woman of honor and dignity. A woman who makes me proud as a young woman. A spirit filled woman and humble to the core. She is a pharmacist and currently an Associate Professor and Dean.

Before I even begin with her, let me ask a personal question. As a woman, be honest, what drives you? I ask this question because there are many lost women driven by wind tides and struggle to find their balance in the world.
I can tell you this much, if your core is not centered on God and His word, you are going to find yourself drowning in situations.
If you depend on marriage to make you fulfilled, on the days you're at the lowest or you are in disagreement with your spouse, you will quickly find yourself LOST.
If you are single and well established, on your lowest days, you would feel empty and lonely...
So, again. what drives you as a WOMAN?
Your PAST? Your PRESENT? Or The FUTURE!

No one answer is correct or incorrect. I think it's a meddle of all three. When I look at the past, I'm tempted to say, maybe if this had happened this way, it could have been different, but then I realize soon enough that I wouldn't be the Kemi Gwan I am today.  So, I revert back to acceptance mode to work with the present. Speaking of the present, the one place you and I have control over. The decisions I make right now will have an exponential effect on the future. Experience gained from my past is what helps me to sustain today. So, you see that they are intertwined.

We are the custodians of our experiences and what we choose to do with them. The relationships that God blesses you with, how do you handle them? Does an experience from the past cause you to shut the front door or occasionally peep from the window?

I remember when I met Pastor Toyin, my guards were up. Don't blame a sister, I have had my share of abuse in the ministry, most especially from Pastor's wives. 
I was defensive and I think I just took offense at every thing she tried to say because I just thought she was judging me. LOL. Little did I know that majority of the problem was my own insecurities and hurt.

As women, majorly driven by our emotions, we make assumptions and conclude about the wrong things. I dare say this because I have realized that especially in marriage. We assume because it looks like this, then it's it. Examples: I greeted her, and she answered with a muffled tone. I saw her staring me down, so she doesn't like me. She's jealous of me because I am married and she's not. I am more favored than she is, so she's jealous of me. Notice the trend in all those assumptions? They focus on "ME." The problems with these assumptions is they prevent you from enjoying relationships and pure friendships.

When God started with me, this was no joke, I humbled myself. God straight up told me I am connected to her and I have to move closer to her (Pastor Toyin) to get what I need to move ahead in Ministry. I then started wondering where or how I was to start without looking like a groupie.
If you know my Pastor's wife, she is not the typical Pastor's wife. She is book-smart and an academician to the core. Actually, let me flaunt her a little (I can picture her doing this πŸ‘†πŸΎπŸ‘†πŸΎπŸ‘†πŸΎ). I'm talking major role model type of woman, yet she is the most humble Pastor's wife/woman I have ever encountered.

Sometimes our experiences aren't meant to make us shut the door of our hearts but to actually open it wider. I have never ever met a more secure cheerleader like her. Very grounded in herself and loves to lift others up. I realize that in order to lift others up, you must be heavily secure and I have no doubt that hers comes from the Lord and a supportive husband. 

I could not possibly have started a movement about celebrating women if I had not seen it demonstrated by this woman of God. She made me believe that as women, we have each other and should look out only for the best in others. If I had given up and not let her in, being on guard and shut my heart, there would have been absolutely no growth for me and I would have remained bitter. In fact, I am glad I took the step to constantly water the relationship I have with her. I have applied this same principle to every relationship that surrounds me. I have to thank my husband for always prodding me to see things as they are when I am sometimes caught up in my emotions.

With that said, we have utmost CONTROL right now! Do something about it. Relationships don't just happen, they are worked out, watered and bred to your satisfaction.

I celebrate you Woman of God for being who you are always! I love you so much and Thank You for showing me you care about me.




Live, Love, Laugh
Kemi Gwan.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

WOMEN IN MINISTRY - PASTOR FUNKE FELIX-ADEJUMO


It is a lovely day to celebrate Women's Day, so Happy Women’s Day Women!
We Celebrate all the phenomenal women out there doing their thing. God bless your muscle to continue the hustle πŸ˜πŸ€—.

This month we're continuing with some of the amazing women in Ministry and I am truly excited about this mentor of mentors! She exudes excellence with a gallant poise.
Many women and homes have been blessed because she chose to follow God.

Following God might seem like an easy Sunday to Sunday activity but I tell you it is more than that. It requires a lifetime of service that most people often struggle accepting. So, when I see men and women who are sold out to their calling especially in Ministry, I am super encouraged as a young woman in Ministry. 

For this Woman of Grace, I have the utmost respect and admiration. I am one of those who gets nostalgic just watching how she carries herself, her husband, her children and her Ministry. She is effortlessly down to earth when speaking on issues concerning women. Her drive and passion for women to pray over their children is magnetic.


I have known Pastor Funke Felix-Adejumo,
 practically since I was a child. Grew up with her children and I know the authenticity of what she carries. I am encouraged to also raise children after God's own heart because when you meet her children, you have to give kudos to this excellent woman.


Mama Funke Felix-Adejumo was the first African woman preacher I saw on television teach married women to please their husbands in every way imaginable. She and a very few women are women in ministry who wear a rare kind of happiness serving God, her home and everywhere else. 


I am that woman who believes you can't give what you don't have. If you don’t practice what you preach, it is only a matter of time before your words come back to haunt you either publicly or privately. 

Caring for family first is the first part of Ministry. Catering to your spouse is in fact the very core of Ministry. Neglecting this order and chasing Ministry outwardly eventually has its consequences. This order is in fact what I desire to master as a woman. Pursuing purpose while caring for family, creating the perfect balance.

I cannot neglect the total trust in God to show us the path of life. I must seek God to find my path and stay in that path. Not get carried away with my own agenda, but staying the course. Caring for family cannot also be the excuse for women not to find their purpose on the earth. Striking the perfect balance between both family and purpose is what makes you a Proverbs 31 woman!

Mama Funke was at my Church recently and she was speaking about all the number of things she has on her plate, not to mention that she is a Grandmother. Have you seen her though?? Hot is the word! 
Ok, but my point is having a lot to do is not the definition of busy. You can be busy doing NOTHING or you can be busy doing the RIGHT THING. 
Thank God for Women like Mama Funke who are the epitome of what a Godly woman looks like, sounds like, prays like…..

Be a woman who makes a difference in her home first and then the rest of the world.

Live, Love, Laugh

Kemi Gwan.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

WE CELEBRATE THE WOMEN IN MINISTRY - PASTOR MRS FOLU ADEBOYE

    

This whole month we will be celebrating some Women in Ministry!

First on our list is Pastor Mrs Folu Adeboye. 
I would like to think that this phenomenal woman has had a superb impact in many women's lives as she has had in mine. It is hard to put into words the respect I have for such a mighty humble woman.

While growing up, her husband Pastor E.A Adeboye seemed like the more famous one and little references were made to his wife. I remember wondering what she must look like and how she dealt with all that Ministry with her husband. I wondered if she had a calling or she was just a support system. As a child, you know so little and understand so little.

Then, about three or four years ago, she was going to be the speaker at a women's convention in Atlanta. My mom and I made our way there and my life has not been the same. Pastor Mrs Adeboye awoke a giant in me. I said some dangerous prayers that affected my destiny because of her light and the words that flowed out of her lips. It felt like I had been searching for that connection my whole life and as I stood in my spot, receiving those words, I knew it was preordained for me to be at that meeting.


I learned that day that she has been the pillar of Papa Adeboye's Ministry all these years and it humbled me that she was not anxious to be seen or you know... how humans, especially women, clamor for recognition. She had carefully carried and still carries out her role with wisdom and endures many experiences both good and bad. 

She shared that it was not always sweet in marriage or handling both marriage and Ministry, but she knew how to pray and rely on God. Prayer and so much more trust in the Holy Spirit is what now works for me altogether in life. It helps to know that it is not always about me but the plan of God.

Yesterday during our nightly vigil, we were overwhelmed studying about how God orchestrates destiny, fellowship and ministry. Sometimes, as people we miss the whole point by thinking it's about us, but in the entirety, it isn't. In ministry especially, we must be careful. Our part might be just to support, or to be supported. However big or small the role we play appears to be, we must remember that we are still just vessels designed to play a part. We must not be carried away with the temptation of making Ministry about us.

Sometimes women in ministry don't ask to play that role as Pastors or Pastors' wives. Some struggle with it for a long time, because perhaps, they just wanted a normal life for themselves. For me, for a long time, I wanted to be a Medical Doctor and be married with beautiful children, but the whole time, God kept teaching me that it is not about what I want or think it should be. Maybe you are struggling with that at the moment, my prayer for you is that you'll yield as soon as possible because there is a better and greater plan ahead, that with time and appropriate understanding, it would make sense.


Fortunately for us, we have great examples like Mama Folu who yielded to the ultimate plan of God. Imagine quickly what could have happened if she refused to support her husband in Ministry. We definitely wouldn't have this structured R.C.C.G. When I then heard her personally speak about missions to deserted territories, where Christianity is not permitted, and how God paved the way to minister to souls and planted churches in places I don't even dream of going at the moment, it humbled me.

Mama Folu Adeboye is not just a decorated Pastor's wife, but a woman who does the work behind the scenes. I am not saying every Pastor's wife is called to be behind the scenes, but perhaps yours is in front of the scenes, it still helps to know that it will never be about any of us or our roles. It is about GOD and HIS PURPOSE.

So, today, I bless God for you Mama Folu Adeboye! You are a gem and a beautiful woman who honors the Lord and your husband, in all the best ways imaginable. You make Ministry and Marriage a beauty to behold. Thank you for leading the way in love and in morality. 

Live, Love, Laugh
Kemi Gwan.