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Inspiration

ARE YOU POTTED OR PLANTED?

ARE YOU POTTED OR PLANTED?

I read a story of an observation by a gentleman that got him asking a question and I thought to ask the same of you today.  Are you potted or planted? The story is simple but profound so I thought to share it with you.

A young man took over his father’s non profit organisation reluctantly only to feel like he was not good enough to fill his father’s shoes because the father was deemed a great leader and extremely good at what he did. Due to this feeling of inadequacy the gentleman continually thought about quitting.

POTTED OR PLANTED?

One afternoon, he took a walk in a garden, where he saw a mix of exotic plants and many of them were in pots everywhere. When he spotted the gardener, he asked him, “Why do you have all these potted plants?”

“These are the plants that we sell,” responded the gardener. “Can you guess how old these are?”

He looked at the potted plants and took a guess. “I don’t know. A couple of months old?” “No,” the gardener responded. “They are anywhere from three to five years old.”

The gardener then pointed to several large trees in the garden, laden with fruit. “How old do you think these are?” “Ten years?” The man guessed.

“They’re the same age, which is, three to five years. The difference between them is that those are potted,” he said pointing to the smaller plants, “and these are planted,” he said, pointing to the large healthy one.

The gentleman who wanted to quit then heard God ask, “Are you potted or planted?”

GOD’S WORD

To be fruitful, you must be planted and not potted. The word of God in Jeremiah says:

“They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes and its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:8 (I personally love the message version. Read here)

As long as you are potted, you cannot bear fruit but if planted, you will grow large and bear fruit! Even in a year of drought a planted tree can still bear fruit.

Make a decision to stay planted and you will  bear fruit. Fruit that will remain and be a blessing to many generations.

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Inspiration

EVERYTHING WILL BE ALRIGHT!

EVERYTHING WILL BE ALRIGHT!

This week saw us celebrating the 18th anniversary of Gateway Chapel, and this got us into a reflective mode. On one of the days, Pastor Eddie said, ‘if anyone had told you when we were in the cow farm that a time of celebration like this will come, what would you have said?’  That question got me thinking and I want to share  with you today. Remember, everything will be alright.

IRRESPECTIVE OF THE CHALLENGES YOU FACE NOW, EVERYTHING WILL BE ALRIGHT

While in the cow farm, though God gave a word of assurance of great days ahead (His promise); He never gave the details of it in such a way that we could have seen today as it is. It can be difficult for many to picture the beautiful future that God has ahead of them, particularly when one cannot see a way out of the present difficulties being experienced – HOPELESSNESS.

The experiences of life sometimes seem endless, I am however a testament to the fact that those days do come to an end and God will still stand true to His word which He promised you. Stay strong and faithful to His word because everything will be alright in the end if you wait for Him and the accomplishment of His words in your life.

When we progressed from the cow farm into a room in a shared accommodation in East London, life took a different turn, and the difficulty was of a different shade. With two little children to worry about in addition to ourselves and living in what I can only describe as an impossible situation with no clear strategy or way out.

POVERTY

The only stable thing during those times were the promises God gave to us. We barely survived on a weekly basis. POVERTY seemed to be our reality in a land of plenty – based on the word God gave us. If this is your experience now, I can surely assure you that it will change, and everything will be alright.

ISOLATION

Another predominant feeling in the times of living in our one room was the feeling of ISOLATION. We had just migrated to the United Kingdom and did not know or have relatives that we could call on.  The feeling of isolation was strong and we did not even know where to get the most basic of information.

We lived based on what we felt was right; but for God and His mercies, mistakes could have been made. He then set us in a local church and the promise of sending us men and women who will carry our children upon their shoulders began to manifest. If you are feeling isolated or lonely today, do not despair because everything will be alright.

HIS WORD

I can recount numerous stories and testimonies, but all can be easily wrapped up with the word of God that says

Weeping may remain for a night but rejoicing comes in the morning. Psalm 30:5

Challenges and tough times do come, but they do have expiry dates. The charge I have for you today is to make sure you set your heart on the Lord and His promises as He takes you through the night season and the tough times, so that you can enjoy your morning season of rejoicing.

Everything will surely be alright, hang on to God because He will carry you through these times. I can assure you without a doubt that you will look back at these times with fondness for the lessons you have learnt and the miracles you have received as our God took you through the wilderness of your life to bring you out to a large place. (Psalm 18:19)

God is on your side! (read this previous blog post to help you focus more on your God and His ability to help you always)

 

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Inspiration

THERE IS A NEW WAY!

THERE IS A NEW WAY!

During the last lockdown in the UK, Costa Coffee sent a message to its customers. The message stated that there is a new way of ordering coffee on the app. This new method means you can collect straight at the shop; no queueing.  This service shortly became something the brand promoted aggressively by giving double points (which eventually adds up to free coffees) to their customers during a certain month. I embraced this new way of ordering.

At the end of the promotional period, I discovered I could not stop praising this new method of ordering as it saved me so much time. Why was it not being taken up by everyone? Ordering with this app is like any ‘click and collect service’ without waiting or even having to interact with anyone. (Although I genuinely miss my chats with the staff whenever I go to place my order in a shop). My coffee ordering time was cut by more than half. What amazed me though were the other people I saw that still queued up at the shops.

THE OBSERVATION

Whenever I went into these shops to pick my order, I would see a lengthy queue of frustrated looking people who I feel looked at me sometimes with envy. I always felt like helping them by sharing this already public news with them. I get into the car and say to my husband, ‘Why are people still queuing when there is a new and faster way?’ And he would say, ‘human beings are creatures of habit and many people just want to continue to do things as before.’  So some will rather stick to what they are used to than embrace change. The change that could potentially save time and money in some instances is ignored.

On  reflecting on this issue and asking the question of where I could also be stuck in the old habits. I thought about how holding on to old things can stop us from embracing the new that God has prepared for us in some areas of life. And this new season shows us how embracing the new is highly needed to navigate the new space we are in as a people today.

THERE IS A NEW WAY!

God in His word says something about new things.

“Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. Isaiah 43:18-19 (check out the NET version)

Looking at this scripture, If I told you that there is a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert, if you are not the type to embrace the new, you probably would not believe, and neither will you experience it. And that will be tragic because you will be missing out on what God has for you.

God will want us to embrace the new thing He is doing around us. There are great blessings and benefits to embracing the new and leaving behind the old. Be open to the new because there is a new way, and this new way is designed to help you.

Enjoy the older blog post on How To Stop Limiting Yourself here

 

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Inspiration

KEEP PRESSING FORWARD!

KEEP PRESSING FORWARD!

Keep pressing forward! Earlier on this week, I shared a lesson learnt from a friend of ours who got over 100 rejection letters without giving up before he eventually got his dream job. He could have stopped, but chose to continue pressing forward.

The story is told of an older man, who was broke, living in a tiny house and owned a beat up car. He was living off of $99 worth of social security cheques. At 65 years of age, he decided things had to change. So he thought about what he had to offer. His friends raved about his chicken recipe and he chose to sell his recipe.

He left Kentucky and traveled to different states to try to sell his recipe, telling restaurant owners that he had a mouthwatering chicken recipe. He offered the recipe to them for free, just asking for a small percentage on the items sold. Sounds like a good deal, right?

KEEP PRESSING FORWARD

Unfortunately, not to most of the restaurants. He heard NO over 1000 times. Even after all of those rejections, he didn’t give up. He believed his chicken recipe was something special. He got rejected 1009 times before he heard his first yes.

With that one success Colonel Hartland Sanders changed the way Americans eat chicken. Kentucky Fried Chicken, popularly known as KFC, was born. What if he had given up after 100 rejections, surely no one would have blamed him for not trying.

God’s word however encourages us in 2 Chronicles 15:7 

“But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded.” (check out this version too net )

If our friend had decided to stop applying after 50 rejection letters or Colonel Sanders stopped after 100 attempts, he would not have been called a failure by most. In fact he might even be counselled to look elsewhere as ‘maybe God wanted something else for him!’ But in the scheme of things, that would have been giving up; so keep moving forward.

The word of God today implores us to be strong. That surely is what you and I need whenever we face repeated rejection. Your hard work will not go without reward if you keep pushing forward.

Remember, never give up in spite of the rejection you might face.

God is on your side

PS: See similar article here