As you might know, Fathers’ Day is approaching here in Ghana. It’s this Sunday, 21st of June and as to how the celebrations got to the third Sunday of June instead of the second, I cannot really tell but I still have this letter for you.
I appreciate the fact that you brought me into this world. I really do because Science has made me understand that it was your semen that fertilised ovaries to begin the conception process in my mum. I do appreciate that a lot. I cannot tell how you treated my mom when she was pregnant because I was not present but since we are both alive and strong, I guess you did not give her too much trouble or else we wouldn’t exist.
I cannot say you didn’t raise me too because if I did, I would be a liar. If for nothing at all your family’s money did – it took me through nursery school all the way to college. I appreciate that because I know most people do not get this kind of opportunity especially when they lose their daddies at a young age.
I don’t know how life would have been if I had had you around especially when I was growing up. Would I have been a daddy’s baby? I don’t know if I would be rushing to you each day to tell you stories about what happened to me during the day or you were going to be that kind of daddy that I would be hiding from. Would you have made that kind of impact I see in most of friends who are always sharing interesting stories about how their dads never spared the rod on them or you wouldn’t have made any difference at all? I have had a number of males advising me but I do not know how an instruction from you would have sounded like. I am certain that would have made a lot of difference in my life.
Fathers’ Day is only two days away and people will be celebrating the impact their daddies have made in their lives. As usual, I am going to remain silent the entire day and imagine how my life would have been if we had met.
I know we would meet someday, in Heaven for sure (Revelations 21 :4) where I will run straight into your arms for the hug that I have always wanted and for those encouraging words that only daddies know how to give. I will ensure you fill me in on every story that I missed while growing up. Just prepare yourself for that ok…
In the previous post, I mentioned how much I disliked telenovelas but focused more on The Empire television show. In this post, I would like to focus a little bit more on the telenovelas that are so common here in Ghana.
Telenovelas are serial dramas which has its origination from Spain. The level of viewership for these soap operas have soared recently since a number of television stations are translating them into our local language.
Although I do not remember the last time I watched one, I know they have very similar story lines – the lead role is played by either a beautiful woman whose love is being competed for by two men or a handsome man whose love is being fought for by two beautiful women.
Why the dislike for Telenovelas?
- They have the power to influence your judgement – Before I became emotionally matured I thought love was all about what I saw in telenovelas – falling in love with a handsome guy or lady, walking on the beach and sipping a drink or going horseback riding and when you got tired with whoever you were with, you switched to another one who made your heart skip faster. That is what most of these story lines portrayed, but in reality love is way more than that. One of my favourite verses in the Bible is 1 Corinthians 13 which provides you with a vivid description of what love ought to be. Proclaiming you love someone is more of an action than emotional. Before anyone proclaims he/she is in love with anyone, they should have a look at what the Bible says before they do so. Sadly, most of these women and children who watch these serials begin to develop certain fantasies about what their love life should be – expecting roses from their men and other romantic gestures which are not too familiar in the Ghanaian culture, causing drifts in their relationships and marriages.
- They are addictive – Yes, when you miss one episode, you feel your life is about to end therefore, whenever it’s time for that particular programme, you would want to leave whatever you are doing to see what is happening to “Camilla” or “Paloma.” If you are going through that remember the Bible mentions in Romans 6:16 … Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Let us be mindful of whatever we choose to become slaves to.
- They teach the wrong things (morally) – This is one of the reasons I stopped watching them. Telenovelas have a beautiful way of making evil people seem so strong and powerful and got away with the sin they committed but sin is something the Bible strongly condemns… Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? …1 Corinthians 9:10
“All things are lawful,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful,” but not all things build up,” and that is according to I Corinthians 10:23, so my question today is what have you been spending your time on?
I stopped watching telenovelas years ago mainly because I hated all the twists, turns and the nature of love they portrayed. I do not like to watch any series either and this because they are long, play with ones’ emotions and portrays lies as real life. I read an interview with Taraji Henson of ‘The Empire” fame and I decided to watch the Empire series to understand what has made this particular American series so popular.
The series was filled with so many nice things including people wearing attractive clothes, good music, very handsome and beautiful people but I still take my stance that these television programmes are simply not a thing for me. I know they are just acting for the money and may not exhibit these characters in real life some viewers may be influenced to adopt some of their lifestyles.
My observations while watching the series include-
- The actors and actresses did not portray the character of Christ – The fruit of the Spirit which is the character of Christ include love, joy, peace, long-suffering, patience, kindness, meekness, faithfulness and self-control and that is according to Galatians 22 but what do we see in these series? People scrambling for a share of rich man’s “empire” and stopping at nothing. They did not mind killing each other to get a share of the riches and not forgetting the owner of the Empire himself who stopped at nothing including hurting his family to get rich. No wonder the Bible says it will be much easier for a donkey to enter into the eye of a needle than for rich man to enter into the Kingdom of God – Matthew 19:24
- It is filled with sexual perversity – The Bible, especially in the New Testament mentioned severally that believers should abstain from sexual immorality (Acts 15:20, 1 Corinthians 5) but these series had a very nice way of justifying sexual immorality. What did we see? Family members laying with one another, friends having fun with sex as if sex was like having a drink. And the homosexuals in Empire, they had a field day. I had a discussion with a friend who drew my attention to the fact that, the empire series had really packaged homosexuality in a very nice way which will make it acceptable even for believers. How? Because the gays in the series were handsome, patient, very loving and talented and it was so easy to accept them and their ways but the Bible made us understand in 1 Corinthians 6:9, that homosexuals among other people will not enter into the Kingdom of God.
- They swore and blasphemed – There were scenes in the series where the lead actor likened himself to Jesus for coming back to life, as God for he had to be immortalised but the Bible also mentions that blasphemy was one of the evils that came from within a man which had the high risk of defiling him. Mark 7:22
Have you watched any of these series? What are your views? Are there series or movies that are helpful for believers? Share them with us!
Whenever I hear or see families do things together, I develop a heavy heart and start to imagine how life would have been if I had a real family with a mum, a dad and siblings living all under roof.
I did not grow up like that. Life started throwing bitter pills down my throat at quite an early age. I had no choice but to swallow them as and when they came. I went to live with mum’s relatives when I was about six years and dad died when I was eight years old.
If you are a Ghanaian, you may have an idea of how it feels when you do not live with real family. I never had any idea of what real family was till I met a Christian one later in life. They did almost everything together – cared for each other, they prayed and worshiped God together and most importantly, they had real communication with one another – each person knew what the other was going through at every point.
After I met with this family, I started imagining how it will feel like to have a family that really loved and cared for each other. We need to thank God for the families He has provided us in our various churches today. If you have not had a real family, I believe the church is the best place where you can find love and a sense of belonging – the kind of love that Jesus wants us to have for one another.
Back in the day of the Apostles, those who received Christ got baptized, came together, sold their possessions and divided it among themselves as anyone had the need. They did that continuously and with gladness and praising God, and do you know what the Lord did for them? According to the last part of Acts 2:47, God added to the Church daily. This, I believe is the simple formula for church growth.
To those who have real families like the one I described earlier, use today to thank God for their lives and to those who have not had ‘real’ families, do not forget the church is a place where you can find a family. To members in churches of all denominations, let us use the example of the Apostles in the book of Acts to create that atmosphere which will draw more people to Church and closer to God. Let us learn to show love to one another by sharing what we have.
Do you have a real life testimony of what God has used the church to do in your life? As usual, we would love to hear from you. Our email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
When anyone experiences a disaster, especially if he/she is a believer, so many questions linger on the minds of people like, how did God allow this to happen? Let us take, the June 3rd disaster at Circle, for example, a lot of people started questioning God and how he allowed such a thing to happen but in all of this we need to remember…
.…He said to them, “Why are you so afraid?…( Mark 4:40)
Many a tragedy befalls mankind and in the natural sequence of events, questions arise and responses are given in an attempt to allay fears or strengthen or weaken certain beliefs. Common amongst these questions is ‘why did God allow this to happen’. The faith of many waver in the process.
O taste and see that the Lord is good… (Psalm 34:8).There are several ways of knowing a person. For example, you can know that a person is good based on your relationship with the person or several testimonies of such a person (of course from reliable sources). The psalmist in the above scripture testifies of the goodness of God. The people of Israel also testified saying “For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever toward Israel, Hallelujah! (Ezra 3:11).”In Malachi 3:6 God makes an emphatic statement of his character, “I do not change”. Drawing inference from the above scriptures we can say that God can only be good. God cannot be the architect of disaster. He loves his children steadfastly.
Jesus said in John 16:33 that “…… In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world“. Tragedies (tribulations) may occur but in spite of these, Jesus would have us function in a particular way. He would have us be cheerful. I ask again “should we live in fear?” … An emphatic no.
Finally picture Jesus saying to you ” child,be of a good cheer in spite of your tribulation” . He only has the answers to our ailing hearts. Remain lifted!
Sometimes they are the first people you meet when you board a “trotro” or bus but mostly they wait till the bus gets full and perch by the “mate” or the bus conductor. A number of them wait till the bus starts moving before starting the church service.
“Close your eyes and let’s pray.” That is how they start the service. Some of them raise songs which they expect people on the bus to respond to. They then pick a verse in the Bible and start to preach. They shout “Amen” and expect everyone on the bus to respond “Amen”. Woe unto you if they discover you are not taking part in the service, or you have your ear phones stuck in your ear and looking through the window unconcerned. If you are fortunate they may let you go but you are likely to turn into the subject of their sermon.
“Some of you feel you are too big to respond to my sermon huh?” they will begin, “I remember I was ministering on a bus and there were a group of men who refused to respond when I screamed ‘Amen.’ Do you know what happened to them? The car had an accident, I didn’t die, those who responded ‘Amen’ didn’t die but the group of men who refused to respond died and were burnt to ashes, so if you ignore me, you are likely to suffer a similar fate.” They will conclude.
We know a number of them are genuine Christians who are responding to our core mandate and following the Scripture in Mark 16:15, He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. Christian Blog Ghana therefore sampled a few opinions of Believers to ascertain how they felt about bus evangelism –
“Personally, I don’t have any problem with it. There are televisions in some of these buses so why can’t we have preachers on them as well,” one of them responded.
“I really cannot stand them. I think they can preach when the bus is stationary but they can sometimes distract the driver. “
“Some of them really deceive the passengers. You do not even know where they get the sermons from.”
“I know genuine people who preach on buses. Such people are professionals in their uniforms. I remember a man working with the Forestry Commission who preached on a bus but some of them, I think they are doing it because of the coins they will get from the passengers.”
What are your views about these people who preach on buses? Have you shared the word of God with other passengers on a bus? Is that something you will ever consider or are considering to do? We would love to know what your thoughts..
At one point in every church, the pastor will advise members of the congregation to join groups or departments. Some of these groups include the choir, ushering, protocol, media and evangelism teams and the famous prayer warriors.
I have changed churches a number of times but whenever I hear the call that God does not like pew warmers, my heart skips a beat and I start thinking of which group to join in order to make a difference in the church.
I am a bit skeptical about joining groups at church for several reasons: One of them includes the fact that most church workers get so used to the work they do that they forget about God Himself. They get so busy that they do not pay attention to what God has for them during the service.
One other thing is that members of the groups get so used to each other too. They resolve to chat while the preacher has mounted the stage and do not even take away any message from the service.
And the meeting times – some groups in the church keep having meetings from Sundays to Saturdays. No wonder people in such groups get so used to each other they forget they are working for God.
Working for God in whatever capacity that you choose is very important. Do you remember the parable of the talents in Matthew 23:14-30? Where the master took the talents away from the servant who refused to use it? But before you join any department in your church, just remember these-
- You are working for God and not for any man. God is the only one who can reward you, therefore do the work as if you are doing to Him.
- If you are joining a group that works during service, find a way of pausing your activities especially when the sermon is being delivered. If you try that and you still cannot hear the sermon, make sure you get a recording to listen to after the service.
- Take into account the things you do quite easily before joining any department. I know the Bible says in Philippians 2:13, ESV For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure but there is nothing more joyous than doing the things you love to do for God.
- Remember the meeting days. Will it favour you? Do not just jump into a group because you like their attire. Have the mindset that you are going to sacrifice your personal comfort to make the group more effective to the church and for God.
And to all church workers, May He equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him. All glory to him forever and ever! Amen. Hebrews 13:21, NLT