IF NOT FOR HIS MERCIES- Reigning daily with Christ

Words

Monday April, 16

IF NOT FOR HIS MERCIES

MEMORY VERSE:

We have escaped like a bird from the fowler’s snare; the snare has been broken, and we have escaped (Psalms 124:7, NIV).

JIDE OGUNSAKIN

PASTOR JIDE OGUNSAKIN Senior Pastor, New Kingdom Church, Pameec Plaza, Wuye, Abuja, Nigeria +234 806 313 4845

TEXT: Psalms 124:1-8

Gratitude always takes people above the ground but ingratitude often take people below the ground (which is the grave). If you are not grateful you will be grounded. You are not better than the people that have been grounded so give God praise. Hope you know some of your age mates are living under the bridge hopeless and helpless. A lot more are insane. Many more are dead but you are alive to the glory of God. Only fools don’t see reasons to praise God. The bible says: “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not” (Lamentation 3:22). Every man is consumable if not for the mercies of the Lord. It is the desire of the devil for you to be long dead but God’s mercies kept you. Remember the bible says: “The thief (devil) cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy” (John 10:10). That has always been the mission of the devil against your life but God won’t let him have his way rather the Spirit of God (The Power of God) is always raising His standard against the devil for your sake and the voice of God is always saying; “Touch not mine anointed, and do my prophets no harm (Psalms 105:15). Hallelujah!!! See how much the mercy of God is fighting for you because God loves you.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Gratitude takes people above the ground but ingratitude takes people below the ground.

PRAYER: Father, thank You for all You have done for me and my entire family. May Your mercies keep defending us so we won’t be grounded in Jesus name.

READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR

Deuteronomy 26,   27,   28:1-14     Luke 17:11-37     Psalms 46:1-11

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Reigning Daily With Christ-Pastor Jide Ogunsakin

Church, God, personality

Friday April, 13

LET IT TAKE YOU UP

MEMORY VERSE:

Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation (Isaiah 12:3).

JIDE OGUNSAKIN

PASTOR JIDE OGUNSAKIN Senior Pastor, New Kingdom Church, Pameec Plaza, Wuye, Abuja, Nigeria +234 806 313 4845

TEXT: Joel 1:12, Isaiah 12:1-6

We live in a world of endless desires. We want the best cars to drive, best houses to live in, best jobs and best everything. Unfortunately, not many people know the right and easiest way to getting the best out of life. Praise is the ladder to greatness. Your many years of labour cannot give you what a day of praiseful life can give you. Nothing greases life like praise. Just like when a car engine lacks grease, it begins to crack noise and struggles in motion so also will any life which is void of praise struggle endlessly and you know what? If you allow that engine to continue like that, it will definitely crash. Praise is the antidote to the crashing of the engine of man’s destiny. That is why I have mentioned at some point in this devotional that if you are not praiseful you will be grounded. Praiseful people can never head for the crash because God is always there piloting all their endeavours. I pray for you today, whatever is working negatively against your destiny trying to make your life crash receives instant judgment from heaven today. You shall not crash but go forward in Jesus name.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

Praiseful people can’t be stranded in life so go forward.

PRAYER:

Father, let it be well with me and all that concerns me. By virtue of Your presence with me may I go forward and not backward in Jesus name.

READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR

Deuteronomy 19,   20     Luke 15:1-32     Psalms 45:1-9

Reigning Daily With Christ – New Kingdom Church, Wuye, Abuja

Church, Facts, God, Words
JIDE OGUNSAKIN

PASTOR JIDE OGUNSAKIN Senior Pastor, New Kingdom Church, Pameec Plaza, Wuye, Abuja, Nigeria +234 806 313 4845

Thursday April, 12

PRAISE GOD WITH YOUR ALL

MEMORY VERSE:

Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name (Psalms 103:1).

TEXT: Psalms 108:1-5

Until you praise God with your all you may never get His all and until you praise Him with your all you may never be made whole. Wholeness is majorly a product of praise that is why only the one leper who returned to give God praise out of the ten was made whole (Luke 17:11-19). Until you praise God spirit, soul and body your praise is not complete. David said: “Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.” By the way, are your hands within you? Then praise God with them. Are your legs within you? Then praise God with them even in a dance. Is your mouth within you? Then sing songs of praise unto Him. Everything that you have is given to you by God so use them to praise this God that has done you well. The faithfulness of God in your life is enough to attract your wholehearted praises. Don’t forget that God does fearful things in praises (Exodus 15:14). This gives us the assurance that praise is profitable. It will profit you in Jesus name. I don’t care what that challenge of your life may be, as you praise God today, God who only can do fearful things will attend to it in Jesus name.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

God is interested in your praise and He deserves it. Use all you’ve got to praise Him.

PRAYER:

Father, help me to give You acceptable praises today and forever.

READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR

Deuteronomy 16:21-22,   17,   18   Luke 14:15-35   Psalms 44:13-26

Reigning Daily With Christ -Pastor Jide Ogunsakin New Kingdom Church, Abuja

Church, God, local news
JIDE OGUNSAKIN

PASTOR JIDE OGUNSAKIN Senior Pastor, New Kingdom Church, Pameec Plaza, Wuye, Abuja, Nigeria +234 806 313 4845

Friday April, 6

GIVE GOD HIS DELIGHT

MEMORY VERSE:

…therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name (Habakkuk 13:15).

TEXT:

Psalms 34:1-10

The only thing that keeps God on His toes is praise. God can’t see quality praise and remain seated, NEVER! Each time God sees quality praise He goes into action immediately. God is super active and most dangerous at the verge of quality praise. Remember the bible says: “Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?” (Exodus 15:11). Do you want to experience the glory of God? Do you want God to show Himself fearful in the camp of your adversaries? Do you want God to do wondrous things in your life even today? Then give Him heartfelt Praise!!!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

Praise is a go-getter. You can pray amiss but you can never praise amiss.

PRAYER:

Father, show Yourself fearful in my favour today.

READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR

Deuteronomy 4:15-49,   5     Luke 11:5-32     Proverbs 8:32-36

REIGNING DAILY WITH CHRIST- Pastor Jide Ogunsakin

Church, God, local news, Words

Thursday April, 5

HUMILIATE YOUR ADVERSARIES

MEMORY VERSE:

Who art thou, O great mountain? BeforeZerubbabel thou shalt become a plain… (Zechariah 4:7).

TEXT: 1st Samuel 17:45-47

Genuine praise givers are praiseful not because they don’t have challenges, but because they know that their challenges are nothing before their God. Amazingly, the more they praise, the more their challenges are being humiliated. The devil is always trembling before praise givers because he cannot predict or understand them.

pow

Power of Persistent by Pastor Jide Ogunsakin – +2348063134845

There was a story of a man who was given a sack letter in the office. The devil thought he had succeeded in stealing his joy but surprisingly, the man rushed down home, gathered his family members and said, “let’s celebrated God I have just been promoted.” They all dance and danced praising God until they got exhausted after which he handed over the sack letter to the wife to her astonishment. Not too long after, he was called upon and was offered a better, bigger and much juicier job. Wow!!!The devil couldn’t stop the praise in his mouth so he couldn’t hinder the blessing in God’s hand from getting to him.

I pray for you today, whatever the devil has stolen from you, it shall be restored unto you hundred folds as you praise God wholeheartedly today. God has never failed, He won’t start with you! Be blessed!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

The wall of Jericho crumbled at the appearance of praise and every other wall can still fall thereby.

PRAYER:

Father, thank You for being there for me. Oh Lord, turn around my captivity today and give me a new song to sing in Jesus name.

READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR

Deuteronomy 2:24-37, 3, 4:1-14 Luke 10:25-42,11:1-4 Psalms 41:7-13

 

POWER OF PERSISTENT PRAYER

Church, God, Words

  POWER OF PERSISTENT PRAYER-                                                                                       Pastor Jide Ogunsakin  

pow

Power of Persistent by Pastor Jide Ogunsakin – +2348063134845

 “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened” (Luke 11: 9-10)

Max Lucado told of a church in Scotland back in the 1940s that was  struggling to keep its doors open. A couple of its members were older   ladies who were invalids and couldn’t get out for worship any longer. But these ladies refused to allow their infirmities to get in the way of serving their God. They became convinced that their community needed Jesus desperately and they were going to do something about it. The resolved they were going to pray.

They determined to make their house a house of prayer. Around the clock they prayed for God to do something powerful. Then came one day, one of the ladies became convinced that God wanted a revivalist by the name of Campbell to come and hold meetings at their church. They talked to their preacher and he contacted the evangelist Campbell, but Campbell was unavailable. He was booked around the period.

IMG-20180403-WA0010#1.pngHowever, these women refused to give up on their prayers and it was not long before oddly enough some of Campbell’s other revival dates were cancelled and he eventually decided to accept the invitation of the small church. Upon arrival at the church, Campbell held 5 weeks of meetings in the areas.

The revival was so well received that hundreds showed up each night and lives were so touched that many local taverns had to close shop due to lack of patrons. One might think it was the powerful teachings by the renowned revivalist, but in reality it was due to faithfulness of two invalid old ladies who dedicated themselves to a live of prayers for the church.

Prayer simply defined is a conversation between God and man, -a kind of dialogue where both parties communicate –. In this kind of encounter, requests are made based on belief in God and He guarantees supplies. Petitions are tendered and swift and appropriate justices are dispensed. Questions are asked and answers are provided. In prayer, God is the bigger partner; the benefactor, while the person who prays, is the beneficiary.

Prayers take different forms; this is determined by the situation of the person involved and his/her circumstances. In other words, the pattern or approach to praying is predicated on the nature of a person’s situation. When a man is in a desperate need for divine intervention, persistent  praying become his natural option to succeed. He must indulge in “Pray until something happens”. Some people call this approach “Operation PUSH” an acronym for “Pray Until Something Happens”. In the words of E. M. Bounds, “He who does not push his plea does not pray at all. Cold prayers have no claim on heaven and no hearing in the courts above”. Until our prayer becomes forceful and “pushful” it might have no guarantee of  answers.

Jesus declared that “… from the days of John the Baptist until now, the Kingdom of heavens suffers violence, and the violence takes it by force!” (Matt.11: 12). Nothing describes persistent prayer more aptly than this statement from the lips of Jesus. In its simplest form; it implies that from the time of John the Baptist, the kingdom of heaven have been experiencing forceful advancement. People who believe have been doing their bits to take the things that belong to them.

 Luke quoted Jesus as saying; “ the law and the prophets were until John. Since that time the Kingdom of God has been preached and everyone is pressing into it” (Luke 16:16). This smacks off persistence, insistence, and consistence, until what is promised by God is obtained. This is the reason for the imperative of persistence in prayers in the lives of all Christians today as it has always been in the days of the Apostles.

Why should Prayers Be Persistent?

Prayers should be persistent whenever a situation is desperate and without obvious solutions. Two examples given by our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ when He walked the face of this earth might shed more lights on our understanding of the need for persistence in our prayer lives. These two parables explain what it really means to be persistent in our prayers to God.

The first account is found in the books of Luke 11: 5-8. A man had an august visitor who arrived at past midnight hours. Can you imagine an unexpected important visitor coming to visit after midnight that you just have to entertain while you have the misfortune of having nothing in the house to set before this guest, and given the timing, almost all places to make purchases are closed. But to show his hospitality, this host must do something to save his dear guest from sleeping in hunger. Lacking many options, he remembered his old friend who was most courteous to always have extra bread in case of emergencies like this.

Without much delay he headed for his friend’s house. The situation was desperate and as they say, “Desperate situations require desperate measures”. In this instance his friend was the only person known with supply he urgently needed at that time. On his part, he was determined to do all he could to have this need met. Jesus continued, “this man went to his friend who was already fast asleep and his children well tucked in bed and began to knock at the door”.

Imagine the knocks of a man in utter desperate situation. He pounded loudly on the door until the man who was fast asleep (or so he thought), suddenly woke up and wryly inquired, “who is at the door?” This was the opportunity this desperate friend was waiting for. He longed for a response from within while he knocked unceasingly. Now when the opportunity presented itself, he seized it with both hands.

His answer to the question “who is at the door” was succinct, clear, precise and straight to the point. There was no room for ambiguities. He reeled out his need to the man who had the capacity to meet them. Here is what he said: “will you kindly lend me some loaves of bread? A friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him. Please save me from this embarrassment.”

Remember he did not go to just anyone, he knew that a friend loves at all time, hence he could get some respite from this his friend in his moment of his need. But did he get the expected answers to his request immediately? No; not without some serious persistence at his request. His rind answered him from his bed but the response was not encouraging. It was blunt: “Do not disturb me. I am already asleep and my children are also asleep. I will not be able to get up and give any bread”.

Here is a point; he had some bread right in his pantry, but the trouble was the stress to get up and give the bread to him. The friend was happy to be doubly sure that there was indeed bread to be had in the locked house, so what needed to be done was anything to compel his friend to come out of his bed and grant his request. The secret was to persist in knocking at his door.

As he refused to let off on his knocks, he succeeded in knocking sleep off the eyes of his sleep loving-friend. Eventually, the man reluctantly stood up and gave him as many bread, as he needed. Jesus maintained that: “Though he will not rise and give him bread because they were friends but because of his importunity, he rose and gave him as he needed”

The power of persistency is really unstoppable. Even people who are heartless, unloving, uncaring and wicked will normally yield to persistent requests, let alone God who is caring, loving, and righteous. He will always answer us speedily.

The second example of persistence in supplication that Jesus taught is found in Luke 18: 1-8. In this beautiful passage Jesus expressed the purpose of the parable in the very first verse: “… men ought to pray and not faint, or lose heart or give up”. Prayer is the only means by which mortal men communicate with immortal God. It is the process by which the       visible talk to the invisible; divinity answers humanity; and problems that look as if they defy normal solutions receives prompt attention and are solved. Jesus was thus emphatic on the need for unbroken prayer chain, which should never give rooms for doubt that might abort the conversation.

Jesus cited the example of a poor widow in illustrating the power of persistence in request. He noted that the poor and hapless woman was facing an impossible situation with this judge sitting over her case. The judge antecedent was indeed quite overwhelming and depressing. He was reputed to neither fear God nor regard men. She knew this judge well and was aware of what she was up against.

Determined to face all consequences squarely and banking on help of God’s providence, she prayed for a positive outcome at the end. She was optimistic that she will have a win at the end of her trial and have the last laugh. Did she really achieve this? The end of the story assured us that her prayers were not in vain, as she did won the case against her. She had gone to the judge with only one request: ”Avenge me of my adversary!” That summed it all up in a short, precise and direct request.

Her adversary was probably making life difficult for her and possibly her children. Her unfavourable condition of being a widow made her vulnerable in the society. She needed and requested protections from her adversaries who were threatening her life. This judge was the only who could meet her need, though the most callous she could find.

Jesus informs us that this judge initially paid little attention to her or to her requests. He openly despised, ignored and bluntly refused to do what she was asking him to do for her, leaving her to her fate. Yet she never quit, never give up and retreat to face her fate alone. She continued to insist on the need for the judge to answer her and avenge her of her adversary. Her need justified her continuous supplication and actions. To her desperate issues must be met with desperate measures. As afar as she was concerned, the judge was her only hope of surviving in the land, and she cared less about his personality or moods, either he was good natured or heartless, all she wanted was justice.

Her undying persistence finally wore out the judge’s resistance; he gave in. Her refusal to give up her petitions, gave him no option but to hear and accede to them. She won a hard fought battle and had the last laugh. Jesus noted that the judge did not give up without seriously rebuffing this hapless widow. He discovered to his chagrin that this widow was no push over, – a woman that cannot be ignored- His resistance was waned down by her persistence.

The judge realizing the need to achieve a win-win situation; –for him to have peace and rest of mind he must address the widow’s pleas- he was pressured to finally listen to her pleas and attend to her needs. He acceded unto her supplications and she was satisfied and     happily left him to his other duties. So both won in the end; the judge his peace of mind from the pestering widow and the widow won her case in his court.

Our attention was drawn by Jesus to a statement credited to the judge when he thought aloud: “Even though I do not fear God nor regard men but because this woman keeps troubling me, I will avenge her lest by her continuous coming she wears me out”. Jesus commented, “Hear what the unjust judge said, and shall not God avenge his own elect who cry out to him day and night even though he bear long with them? I tell you He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes shall He find faith in the earth?” The lesson Jesus was teaching us here is that God is not wicked and heartless to keep ignoring our prayers like the unjust judge did.

Jesus assured us that: “God will hear speedily, as many as cry to Him day and Night”. Persistent prayer is a powerful prayer tool that we must use consistently; and God is ever there to answer us speedily.

Another good example of persistence in prayer in the Bible was demonstrated by Prophet Elijah (1 Kings 18:41-45). Prophet Elijah and King Ahab needed rain after three years of continuous drought in Israel. Elijah bent down on the ground putting his face between his knees. Elijah prayed and asked his servant to go out and look towards the sea for cloud and a sign of rain as answer to his supplication. The servant returned and reported that there was no sign at all.

Elijah was not dissuaded by this setback, but kept on praying with expectation. He sent his servant again and again until he got a favourable answer to his fervent prayers. Finally, his servant looked towards the sea seven times before the rain clouds were sighted. Elijah never waivered in his prayers, he would not give up and doubt his beliefs hence he got the answer to his persistent prayers. Without doubts in his heart, his total expectation and confidence in the Almighty God provoked the desired results at the end.

I will love to close this chapter with a testimony of a sister as shared with my father in the Lord, Pastor E. A. Adeboye:

This sister and her blind mother lived in a rented apartment. One fateful day, the landlord came and threatened to throw them out of the house due to the fact that they owed him huge some of money as rent. The landlord there and then gave them an ultimatum to either pay up what they owe by 12 noon the following day or be violently thrown out of the house. The sister cried unto God in clear terms, saying, “O Lord, where will I go with my blind mother? O god, you have until 12 noon tomorrow to send us help’. She prayed fervently and later dropped off to sleep that night. She was woken the next morning by an aroma coming from the directions of the kitchen, wondering who could be cooking in her kitchen since she lived alone with her mother who was blind and could not cook in her condition.

To her utmost surprised when she made her way into the kitchen, she     discovered her mother was the person preparing their breakfast. Her blind mother has been miraculously healed during the night by God, and could now see. Their mouths were filled with joy. In that great mood, they sat down to eat with their faith renewed, strengthened and broadened. Before she started eating, he said a quick prayer: “God, if you could open the eyes of my mother, then I know that the money with which we shall pay the rent will arrive before 12noon”.

Shortly before they finished their meal, the doorbell rang, and it was the postman who had come to deliver a letter. She received the letter and when she opened it she discovered miracle number two: in the envelope was a cheque; and the amount on the cheques was not only enough to clear their backlog of rent but enough to actually buy off the house.

Things to Remember:

  • When a man is in a desperate need for divine intervention, persistent prayer becomes his natural option.
  • He who does not push his plea does not pray at all. Cold prayers have no claim on heaven and no hearing in the courts above.
  • The prayer of persistence is imperative in the life of the Christian today as it has always been.
  • The power of persistency is unstoppable. It does not take no for an answer.
  • Even a man that is heartless, unloving, uncaring and wicked will yield to persistence, let alone God who is caring, loving, and righteous.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela Is Dead at 81

international News, OBITUARY

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, whose hallowed place in the pantheon of South Africa’s liberators was eroded by scandal over corruption, kidnapping, murder and the implosion of her fabled marriage to Nelson Mandela, died early Monday in Johannesburg. She was 81.

Her death, at the Netcare Milpark Hospital, was announced by her spokesman, Victor Dlamini. He said in a statement that she died “after a long illness, for which she had been in and out of hospital since the start of the year.”

The South African Broadcasting Corporation said she was admitted to the hospital over the weekend complaining of the flu after she attended a church service on Friday. She had been treated for diabetes and underwent major surgeries as her health began failing over the last several years.

Charming, intelligent, complex, fiery and eloquent, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela (Madikizela was her surname at birth) was inevitably known to most of the world through her marriage to the revered Mr. Mandela. It was a bond that endured ambiguously: She derived a vaunted status from their shared struggle, yet she chafed at being defined by him.

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Ms. Madikizela-Mandela attended her husband’s trial in Pretoria, South Africa, in 1962. Credit Associated Press

Ms. Madikizela-Mandela commanded a natural constituency of her own among South Africa’s poor and dispossessed, and the post-apartheid leaders who followed Mr. Mandela could never ignore her appeal to a broad segment of society. In April 2016, the government of President Jacob G. Zuma gave Ms. Madikizela-Mandela one of the country’s highest honors: the Order of Luthuli, given, in part, for contributions to the struggle for democracy.

Ms. Madikizela-Mandela retained a political presence as a member of Parliament, representing the dominant African National Congress, and she insisted on a kind of primacy in Mr. Mandela’s life, no matter their estrangement.

Increasingly, though, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela resented the notion that her anti-apartheid credentials had been eclipsed by her husband’s global stature and celebrity, and she struggled in vain in later years to be regarded again as the “mother of the nation,” a sobriquet acquired during the long years of Mr. Mandela’s imprisonment. She insisted that her contribution had been wrongly depicted as a pale shadow of his.

“I am not Mandela’s product,” she told an interviewer. “I am the product of the masses of my country and the product of my enemy” — references to South Africa’s white rulers under apartheid and to her burning hatred of them, rooted in her own years of mistreatment, incarceration and banishment.

Conduit to Her Husband

While Mr. Mandela was held at the Robben Island penal settlement, off Cape Town, where he spent most of his 27 years in jail, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela acted as the main conduit to his followers, who hungered for every clue to his thinking and well-being. The flow of information was meager, however: Her visits there were rare, and she was never allowed physical contact with him.

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The Mandelas were married in June 1958.                     Credit Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

In time, her reputation became scarred by accusations of extreme brutality toward suspected turncoats, misbehavior and indiscretion in her private life, and a radicalism that seemed at odds with Mr. Mandela’s quest for racial inclusiveness.

She nevertheless sought to remain in his orbit. She was at his side, brandishing a victor’s clenched fist salute, when he was finally released from prison in February 1990.

At his funeral, in December 2013, she appeared by his coffin in mourning black — positioning herself almost as if she were the grieving first lady — even though Mr. Mandela had married Graça Machel, the widow of the former Mozambican president Samora Machel, in 1998, on his 80th birthday, six years after separating from Ms. Madikizela-Mandela and two years after their divorce. It was Mr. Mandela’s third marriage.

In 2016, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela began legal efforts to secure the ownership of Mr. Mandela’s home in his ancestral village of Qunu. She contended that their marriage had never been lawfully dissolved and that she was therefore entitled to the house, which Mr. Mandela had bequeathed to his descendants. High Court judges rejected that argument in April. After learning that she had lost the case, she was hospitalized.

Her lawyers said she would appeal the High Court judgment.

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Ms. Madikizela-Mandela was surrounded by supporters in the black township of Kagiso in 1986. Credit Associated Press

‘She Who Must Endure’

Nomzamo Winifred Zanyiwe Madikizela was born to a noble family of the Xhosa-speaking Pondo tribe in Transkei. Her first name, Nomzamo, means “she who must endure trials.”

Her birth date was Sept. 26, 1936, according to the Nelson Mandela Foundation and many other sources, although earlier accounts gave the year as 1934.

Her father, Columbus, was a senior official in the so-called homeland of Transkei, according to South African History Online, an unofficial archive, which described her as the fourth of eight children. (Other accounts say her family was larger.) Her mother, Gertrude, was a teacher who died when Winnie was 8, the archive said.

As a barefoot child she tended cattle and learned to make do with very little, in marked contrast to her later years of free-spending ostentation. She attended a Methodist mission school and then the Hofmeyr School of Social Work in Johannesburg, where she befriended Adelaide Tsukudu, the future wife of Oliver Tambo, a law partner of Mr. Mandela’s who went on to lead the A.N.C. in exile. She turned down a scholarship in the United States, preferring to remain in South Africa as the first black social worker at the Baragwanath hospital in Soweto.

One day in 1957, when she was waiting at a bus stop, Nelson Mandela drove past. “I was struck by her beauty,” he wrote in his autobiography, “Long Walk to Freedom.” Some weeks later, he recalled, “I was at the office when I popped in to see Oliver and there was this same young woman.” 

Mr. Mandela, approaching 40 and the father of three, declared on their first date that he would marry her. Soon he separated from his first wife, Evelyn Ntoko Mase, a nurse, to marry Ms. Madikizela-Mandela on June 14, 1958.

Ms. Madikizela-Mandela was thrust into the limelight in 1964 when her husband was sentenced to life in prison on charges of treason. She was officially “banned” under draconian restrictions intended to make her a nonperson, unable to work, socialize, move freely or be quoted in the South African news media, even as she raised their two daughters, Zenani and Zindziswa.

In a crackdown in May 1969, five years after her husband was sent to prison, she was arrested and held for 17 months, 13 in solitary confinement. She was beaten and tortured. The experience, she wrote, was “what changed me, what brutalized me so much that I knew what it is to hate.”

After blacks rioted in the segregated Johannesburg township of Soweto in 1976, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela was again imprisoned without trial, this time for five months. She was then banished to a bleak township outside the profoundly conservative white town of Brandfort, in the Orange Free State.

“I am a living symbol of whatever is happening in the country,” she wrote in “Part of My Soul Went With Him,” a memoir published in 1984 and printed around the world. “I am a living symbol of the white man’s fear. I never realized how deeply embedded this fear is until I came to Brandfort.”

Contrary to the authorities’ intentions, her cramped home became a place of pilgrimage for diplomats and prominent sympathizers, as well as foreign journalists seeking interviews.

Ms. Madikizela-Mandela cherished conversation with outsiders and word of the world beyond her confines. She scorned many of her restrictions, using whites-only public phones and ignoring the segregated counters at the local liquor store when she ordered Champagne — gestures that stunned the area’s whites.

Banishment Took Toll

Still, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela’s exclusion from what passed as a normal life in South Africa took a toll, and she began to drink heavily. During her banishment, moreover, her land changed. Beginning in late 1984, young protesters challenged the authorities with increasing audacity. The unrest spread, prompting the white rulers to acknowledge what they called a “revolutionary climate” and declare a state of emergency.

When Ms. Madikizela-Mandela returned to her home in Soweto in 1985, breaking her banning orders, it was as a far more bellicose figure, determined to assume leadership of what became the decisive and most violent phase of the struggle. As she saw it, her role was to stiffen the confrontation with the authorities.

The tactics were harsh.

“Together, hand in hand, with our boxes of matches and our necklaces, we will liberate this country,” she told a rally in April 1986. She was referring to “necklacing,” a form of sometimes arbitrary execution by fire using a gas-soaked tire around a supposed traitor’s neck, and it shocked an older generation of anti-apartheid campaigners. But her severity aligned her with the young township radicals who enforced commitment to the struggle.

In the late 1980s, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela allowed the outbuildings around her residence in Soweto to be used by the so-called Mandela United Football Club, a vigilante gang that claimed to be her bodyguard. It terrorized Soweto, inviting infamy and prosecution.

In 1991 she was convicted of ordering the 1988 kidnapping of four youths in Soweto. The body of one, a 14-year-old named James Moeketsi Seipei — nicknamed Stompie, a slang word for a cigarette butt, reflecting his diminutive stature — was found with his throat cut.

Ms. Madikizela-Mandela’s chief bodyguard was convicted of murder. She was sentenced to six years for kidnapping, but South Africa’s highest appeals court reduced her punishment to fines and a suspended one-year term.

By then her life had begun to unravel. The United Democratic Front, an umbrella group of organizations fighting apartheid and linked to the A.N.C., expelled her. In April 1992, Mr. Mandela, midway through settlement talks with President F. W. de Klerk of South Africa, announced that he and his wife were separating. (She dismissed suggestions that she had wanted to be known by the title “first lady.” “I am not the sort of person to carry beautiful flowers and be an ornament to everyone,” she said.)

Two years later, Mr. Mandela was elected president and offered her a minor job as the deputy minister of arts, culture, science and technology. But after allegations of influence peddling, bribetaking and misuse of government funds, she was forced from office. In 1996, Mr. Mandela ended their 38-year marriage, testifying in court that his wife was having an affair with a colleague.

Only in 1997, at the behest of Archbishop Desmond M. Tutu at South Africa’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, did Ms. Madikizela-Mandela offer an apology for the events of the late 1980s. “Things went horribly wrong,” she said, adding, “For that I am deeply sorry.”

mandela-obit-3-blog427 (1)

Ms. Madikizela-Mandela at a 2009 gathering to honour her former husband, who died four years later.                    Credit Alexander Joe/Agence France-Presse                          — Getty Images

Yet the catalog of missteps continued, cast into sharp relief by her haughty dismissiveness toward her accusers. In 2003 she was convicted of using her position as president of the A.N.C. Women’s League to obtain fraudulent loans; she was sentenced to five years in prison. But her sentence was again suspended on appeal, with a judge finding that she had not gained personally from the transactions.

To the end, Ms. Madikizela-Mandela remained a polarizing figure in South Africa, admired by loyalists who were prepared to focus on her contribution to ending apartheid, vilified by critics who foremost saw her flaws. Few could ignore her unsettling contradictions, however.

“While there is something of a historical revisionism happening in some quarters of our nation these days that brands Nelson Mandela’s second wife a revolutionary and heroic figure,” the columnist Verashni Pillay wrote in the South African newspaper The Mail and Guardian, “it doesn’t take that much digging to remember the truly awful things she has been responsible for.”

Christian Conflict Management 101

Easter

To be able to live peacefully in any environment, we need to understand the fact that; Conflicts are inevitable and might not be totally avoidable. Regardless of our nature and personality traits, we tend to have issues with other people. Dealing with conflict isn’t easy; natural order of things has made scarcity of resources and time major challenges to humanity. As a leader, as a human being, you can be sure that you’ll face relational conflicts. No leadership model exists that will totally eliminate disagreements or clashes of personality. In fact, the tension that comes from conflict can be healthy and beneficial to growth if dealt with correctly. Life’s most important question isn’t “Will I face conflicts?” but “How can I best manage conflicts when they arise?”

The only Christ supported key to dealing with conflict is to follow God’s word and respond obediently and these are:

Eliminate Need to Retaliate: Understanding the others are important in handling conflicts. We need to listen more and be attentive to the inner pains being expressed by the others always. As Christians we should always learn to emphasize through active listening. Don’t totally avoid discussions. Don’t ignore underlining concern and covert interests that are instrumental to position of the other parties. Ignore the; insults, accusations and curses, they are all expressions of hurt. Emotions cannot be controlled by many people during quarrels, look beyond the tones, the pains and frustrations, concentrate on the issues at all time. Conflicts challenge our unity as a body of Christ. Our unity always poses a threat to the devil that will use every opportunity to take advantage of unresolved issues, especially those involving anger, bitterness, self-pity, and envy to bring us down (see Prov. 26:20)

“Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from us, along with all malice” (Ephesians 4:31). Conflict remains one major challenge to our prayers to the Lord. Jesus insisted that we love our neighbours as ourselves and that we should always promptly settle all quarrels with our brothers before coming for prayers (John 13:34: Romans 12:10). He specifically taught us to always express undying love to one another and tries to live in peace and harmony with our neighbours and brothers (Romans 15:5). Jesus commanded Christians to ensue: patience, kindness and tenderness of heart in dealing with each other always (1 Corinthians 13:4)

Discuss issues as they arise and acknowledge the other’s emotions: Jesus enjoined us to settle our differences among ourselves (2 Corinthians 13:11). Jesus was direct in His instructions about transgressions between brothers. “Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him” (Luke 17:3-4). Christians should learn the spirit of Jesus and the most essential part of conflict resolution process are; understanding the feelings of others and forgiving them.

We are taught to be long-suffering and tenderhearted toward one another. Good Christians will always consider others feelings and pains before theirs at all times (Philippians 2:3). We are to refrain from pre-judging issues and listen carefully to issues before we comment. In quarrels we should look beyond the explicit to the covert innuendoes in all statements. Interests determine people’s positions and as Christians we should always be conscious not to be selfish and over bearing in our attitude. Saint Paul admonishes us to always “do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others” (Philippians 2:3–4).

Manage Emotions:

Uncontrolled emotional outbursts are the reasons for most arguments turning violent. We should always learn to appreciate the others standpoint and appreciates their emotions. Be emphatic at all times; listen attentively to what the others are saying. Never presuppose anything. Learn to be patient and see beyond the hurt and thoughtless argument of the other. Try walking away from argument when emotions can’t be controlled. We should always be the barometers of arguments, when it gets too hot to be reasonable walking away is a great option. We might not be able to solve any issue when tempers are flaring, hence when we are reaching our breaking point, please endeavours to move away for sometime for temper to cool down.

We are supposed to be strong and be the pillar for our friends and rejoice in finding solution to issues (Ephesians 4:2; 1 Corinthians 13:6). Always understand the role of emotion and ego in conflicts, as Christians; we should never aim at hurting others back, because of what they said during a quarrel. Learn to be more understanding and see beyond the hurt and thoughtlessness in other’s speech. Walk away, cool down and look for another way of addressing issues and not emotion later in a more mutually beneficial and rational way later (Coll. 3:120

Learn how to apologise:

 As peacemaker and Christian, we should learn how to diffuse tension with golden statements like ‘I am so sorry dear” “Please forgive me, if I in any way hurt you” even when you are not wrong! Disarm violent response with positive statements. Look beyond the hurt intended by the speech, learn to see the underlining tone and deal with issues while ignoring their position. Always be careful to craft your response at all time. Avoid deteriorating already fry nerves by saying the wrong things. Be smart to always ignore areas of disagreements and concentrate on points of agreements. This reduces argument from start and encourages better concentration by the other parties. You don’t drop a fish suddenly in a new tank; you do it slowly and gently. Arguments are not for winning; it’s about smoothing patches and designing better relationships. Hence you don’t throw cautions to the wind and attack the other parties relentlessly with violent words (Prov. 6:3; Coll. 3:13; Prov. 12:20).

Learn how to elicit underlining interests.

Clarify issues by asking open-ended questions thereby slowing down argument. These allow your opponent to pause and think out a response. People plan quarrel out in their minds before meeting the other parties. You should always throw a spanner in their meticulous plans by asking pertinent and clarifying questions such as:

  • “Please tell me, why is this so important to you..”?
  • “If I can understand you and rephrase that statement, what you are trying to say is that you are not being appreciated for all your hard works here, right”?
  • “Please tell me again, why is this so important right now”?
  • “Thanks for your complete honesty with me, but what do you think we can do right now, please”?

Always refrain from shouting and striking the others. Learn not to use words that can be deemed insulting, sarcastic and demeaning to others during quarrels. Abstain from raising your hand to strike others when temper flares. It’s barbaric and termed childish in all culture. Never use final words that leave your opponents with no choices. Statements like “ If you walk out, don’t ever come back here again”, “You are a bastard if you don’t do it” “Strike me if you are a man” “I hate you”. Reconciliations are made difficult by words spoken during quarrels. Many could forget the source of the quarrel, but what you say during the quarrel is etched in memories forever. You can’t unsay words, so be careful what you say during conflicts. Quarrels are to rework relationship processes not to end it. We lose great friends by being too excited and not watching our utterances.

Understanding the Lessons of Easter

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Understanding the Lessons of Easter

 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead (1 Peter 1:3)

The very purpose of this Easter weekend reminds us, no matter what we face today, what we’ve been through, or what uncertainties tomorrow may hold, Christ is our Hope. He conquered death; He makes all things new. The death of Jesus on the cross at Calgary was a culmination of challenges thrown at our Lord and Saviour towards denying us of His great deliverance and assurances for everlasting life with God.

Today one challenge or the other bows down many Christians. They have continued to lose hope and fail in their works in the church. I say this to you; Buckle up! Christ never assured us of an easy life. He maintained that we have to work hard and defeat the devil and his demons to get the glory of heaven. We are not Christians because it’s easy and fashionable to be, but because we are called to fight the good fight of faith.

Distinguished fellows, an analytical look at His life and the main lesson of Easter I bring to you today. Easter become the basis of our faith in Christ since Jesus Christ was crucified and resurrected over a Glorious Easter weekend 2000 years ago. Looking back in history, Jesus’s crucifixion was treated as a routine issue by Roman Governor of Jerusalem, Julius Caesar and his court clerks that not even a records of His death was found in Roman official records of the period.   Yet, within a hundred years of His resurrection, Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Government.

Jesus impressive life of great provision was filled with mysteries and these started from conception. His mother was a virgin. A virgin getting pregnant was seen as confirmation of fornication, which should have been treated with utmost dispatch. The culprit stoned to death. But surprisingly not even a stain was recorded on Mary during the course of this pregnancy. Challenge at point of deliver, led the young couple on the way to Jerusalem to opt for the stables by the roadside. And without any complications, the most popular and most used name in world history was born.

Even when King Herod in his Imperial jealousy wanted Jesus killed, our Lord escaped his snares and become more popular than the Kind when he appeared in the Temple at thirteen to the delight of the elders and scribes Christ travail was amplified immediately after His baptism by John the Baptist at River Jordan. He came face to face with the Devil after forty days and nights fast in the wilderness. At the point of His weakness after a long fast, the devil approached Him with several tests that tried Jesus knowledge of the Word “as written”. Jesus without breaking sweats won the temptations of the Devil.

In almost four years of ministry, Jesus Christ was never recorded to have had to run away from any challenge. He took the Pharisees and the Scribes on, on matter of the laws and sin; fed over 5,000 men –not counting women and children- with five loaves and two fishes; turned water into wine at wedding in Canaan; rose the dead; and walked upon the sea.

Jesus handled His last days with respect, utmost dignity with head held high. He never for once showed trepidation and allow the Satan a space for triumph. Jesus said, “It is finished”, meaning all our challenges are over in this world. Yet many of us still worry over issues and challenges bordering on living.

“That you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come” (Eph. 1:18-21).

The real lesson of His death and resurrection is captured in the challenges posed by the manner of His burial. Jesus was buried and His grave covered with a large big boulder, and guards were posted round the clock; the supposed coupe de grace. The enemies have also read the scriptures and are also aware of the fact that Jesus was to rise after three days in the bowel of the earth. To prevent this, proper efforts were made to thwart any efforts to steal His body, thereby proving that Christ is the “messiah”.

His resurrection regardless of the challenge showed us that nothing could really stop us from realizing our dreams. Challenges are just stepping-stones to our greatness. Understanding the basis that Jesus ended all our challenges on the cross was the basis for unqualified success. Christian living have qualified us for His Grace and forever absolve us from any attempt of the devil and its demon on our lives.

“He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’” (Luke 24:6-7)

 “He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.” (Matt. 28:6)

Easter is the confirmation of our never finishing, never failing, and never ending Grace of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. Because Jesus has and will never fail; any praying Christian is endowed with all these Grace inherent to our Saviour. Praying solves all things. Jesus left us with just a way to solve all problems in our life, he asked us never to succumb to the will of the devil. Our only solution is to Pray:

“If you have faith and do not doubt, not only will you do what was done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. If you believe, you will receive” whatever you ask in prayer”. (Matt. 21: 22)

You too Can Conquer Giant Problems

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You too Can Conquer Giant Problems- By Don Michael Adeniji

In every day business we are always faced with thousands of challenges, deadlines and harsh decisions. Major challenges to our operations occur when we are faced with erratic, bloated ego and obviously bigger negotiating partner standing in our ways to achieving our goals.

Whenever I am faced with this kind of situation the Biblical story of David and Goliath always come to mind. Given modern world economic system, most of us are always squaring up against opponents that looks gigantic and insurmountable which aware of its strength always try to use power negotiation tactics to have his ways at all time. I have personally experience this situation and I will tell you, “its never easy challenging the giant problems”.

The religious side of the story of David has always entailed a greater emphasis on the Miracle in the Valley of Elah. Just like in most religious histories, the morale and sequence of actions are always martyred. After several look at First Book of Samuel Chapter 16 and 17 I am convinced that for you to enjoy David’s Miracle you have to understand the five (5) basic principles of David- adopted today by Super deal makers and professional negotiators.

Determine your areas of competencies and Practise your Talent – Don’t wait till the next challenge before you start preparing for eventualities, even the none obvious one. David did not start Practising slinging at the camp in Ella. Though a shepherd, he qualified himself as a musician and a soldier of repute (I Sam. 16 V 18).

Always Celebrate Your Achievements: People will only know about your prowess if they are notified of them. Your witness and qualification to seat at the table with giants at all should be obvious to all. Other parties and your colleagues should respect and be ready to recommend you for challenges. You cant lead a team without proper experience. David’s Resume was long as a professional slinger and Saul was convinced after several testimonies to put the fate of a whole country on the teenager’s shoulders (see I Sam 16 V 21, I Sam 17 V 32-38).

Research, Brainstorm and Decide on a Game plan. Always find out qualitative information about the opponents. The underlying concerns, interests and values that culminated in current positions should be properly analyzed. David asked questions before attempting to fight Goliath, he watched him move and saw the weight he carried. He analyzed the chances available for him, his point of approach, the kind of stones he needed for his attack and all. Surprisingly, only few historians acknowledged the fact that slingers have always had upper hands against the ancient infantry. The infantry were loaded down with chain mails, swords, shields and spears, they tends to be sluggish and slow in reactions while the slingers were the snipers of that era (see I Sam 17 V 38-39).

Prepare: Using the proper equipment is important when faced with one in a lifetime options as David was. David knew he only has a chance with his sling before the giant consumes him. So he went down to the stream and choose five smooth stones for his sling. Many have never bothered to ask why David had to go all the way to the stream for his stones. David understood the risk he was taking, he factored his chances, BATNA and chances of success of getting it right the first time. So the type of stone matters, smooth stones are easily maneuvered in the slings hence delivers better accuracies. Preparation is essential for success of any decision maker. Without proper preparation you may miss important factors in the whole exercise (see I Sam 17 V. 40).

Deal with emotions: Several emotions come to play in every challenges, each parties emotions determines the way they will respond at the table. Most negotiations are lost through lack of basic understanding of the values, feelings and orientations of the other party. The challenge for a deal maker is the ability to balance his own emotion and manage without hurting the emotions of the other parties successfully during the process. Active listening, prompt reactions to undertones and covered overtures are important in achieving success. Goliath’s emotion betrayed him and made him loose focus at the most important time in the challenge. He was so angered t the puny sight of David, he never noticed the sling in his hand until it was two late.

 

You too Can Conquer Giant Problems

Easter

You too Can Conquer Giant Problems – Don Michael Adeniji

In every day business we are always faced with thousands of challenges, deadlines and harsh decisions. Major challenges to our operations occur when we are faced with erratic, bloated ego and obviously bigger negotiating partner standing in our ways to achieving our goals.

Whenever I am faced with this kind of situation the Biblical story of David and Goliath always come to mind. Given modern world economic system, most of us are always squaring up against opponents that looks gigantic and insurmountable which aware of its strength always try to use power negotiation tactics to have his ways at all time. I have personally experience this situation and I will tell you, “its never easy challenging the giant problems”.

The religious side of the story of David has always entailed a greater emphasis on the Miracle in the Valley of Elah. Just like in most religious histories, the morale and sequence of actions are always martyred. After several look at First Book of Samuel Chapter 16 and 17 I am convinced that for you to enjoy David’s Miracle you have to understand the five (5) basic principles of David- adopted today by Super deal makers and professional negotiators.

Determine your areas of competencies and Practise your Talent – Don’t wait till the next challenge before you start preparing for eventualities, even the none obvious one. David did not start Practising slinging at the camp in Ella. Though a shepherd, he qualified himself as a musician and a soldier of repute (I Sam. 16 V 18).

Always Celebrate Your Achievements: People will only know about your prowess if they are notified of them. Your witness and qualification to seat at the table with giants at all should be obvious to all. Other parties and your colleagues should respect and be ready to recommend you for challenges. You cant lead a team without proper experience. David’s Resume was long as a professional slinger and Saul was convinced after several testimonies to put the fate of a whole country on the teenager’s shoulders (see I Sam 16 V 21, I Sam 17 V 32-38).

Research, Brainstorm and Decide on a Game plan. Always find out qualitative information about the opponents. The underlying concerns, interests and values that culminated in current positions should be properly analyzed. David asked questions before attempting to fight Goliath, he watched him move and saw the weight he carried. He analyzed the chances available for him, his point of approach, the kind of stones he needed for his attack and all. Surprisingly, only few historians acknowledged the fact that slingers have always had upper hands against the ancient infantry. The infantry were loaded down with chain mails, swords, shields and spears, they tends to be sluggish and slow in reactions while the slingers were the snipers of that era (see I Sam 17 V 38-39).

Prepare: Using the proper equipment is important when faced with one in a lifetime options as David was. David knew he only has a chance with his sling before the giant consumes him. So he went down to the stream and choose five smooth stones for his sling. Many have never bothered to ask why David had to go all the way to the stream for his stones. David understood the risk he was taking, he factored his chances, BATNA and chances of success of getting it right the first time. So the type of stone matters, smooth stones are easily maneuvered in the slings hence delivers better accuracies. Preparation is essential for success of any winner. Without proper preparation you may miss important factors in the whole exercise (see I Sam 17 V. 40).

Deal with emotions: Several emotions come to play in every challenges, each parties emotions determines the way they will respond at the table. Most negotiations are lost through lack of basic understanding of the values, feelings and orientations of the other party. The challenge for a deal maker is the ability to balance his own emotion and manage without hurting the emotions of the other parties successfully during the process. Active listening, prompt reactions to undertones and covered overtures are important in achieving success. Goliath’s emotion betrayed him and made him loose focus at the most important time in the challenge. He was so angered t the puny sight of David, he never noticed the sling in his hand until it was two late.

Happy Easter and God Bless Us.

He Is Risen

Easter

he is Risen

It is finished,
He screamed
Then, darkness fell
Thunder loudly capped
His Enemies scattered
Friends, disciples departed
His Body; they entombed
Boulder blocked His Tomb
Fearing the End, Mary wept
Disciples mourned
Yet, they hear not
Nature, counting
The order of days
Morning, afternoon then night
Three days, He promised
To stay in
The bowel of earth
If the stone cannot
Stop His resurrection
Men cannot stop
Your edification
For in His Resurrection is your divine restoration
Congratulations
Happy Easter
He has risen
Our Saviour is alive!!!!