Lightening Up 2019: Bro Philemon Drops 4 Hit Tracks

Born on October 15th, 1980 in the suburbs of Manse, Kumasi in the Ashanti Region of Ghana, Ishmael Philemon Ackon, popularly known as Bro Philemon has enjoyed the influence of music through the church. It is no wonder the gospel musician, performer, songwriter and producer has released four new songs which are already making waves in this new year. His parents, Beatrice Ivy Ackon and the late Reverend Emmanuel Eddie E. Ackon, were members of the Methodist Church who played various roles in the gospel musician’s successful career.

Bro Philemon is currently a worship leader at the Shenzhen International Fellowship in China where he resides with his wife Mary Joy Yap Dugaduga and children Beatrice Ivy-Joy Ackon and Trixie Efua-Otuah Ackon.

The multiple gospel award-winner is also a businessman and the Chief Executive Officer of P & D MPC HK Co. Limited (Hong Kong) and Philemon’s Supply Management SZ Co. Limited (Shenzhen, China).

His four new songs feature popular names like Akesse Brempong, Amy Newman and Jeremy Rayborn Hall. These songs are already receiving massive airplay and they include:

The Song & The Dance featuring Jeremy Rayborn Hall (Download Here):  

‘Your Name’ featuring Akesse Brempong (Download Here)

‘Sweetest Name Remix’ feat Amy Newman (Download Here)

‘Higher Ground’ (Download Here)

Content Source: Gospel Bloggers Association

2019: To Make Plans or not to Make Plans

It’s another new year and the debate on whether to make plans or resolutions has started (as usual 🤷). I have been on both sides before. There have been years where I had nothing on paper because I believed God had the ultimate plan for my life. I was ‘comfortably living out’ Jeremiah 29:11 😊

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Of course, God was the master planner and so what was my role? Nothing much. Just acting out His plan and in those years, I really had nothing to show on 31st December. There were other years that I wrote my new resolutions on sheets of papers that I never bothered to look for. Those years were equally ordinary but last year, I did something very different that worked and in 2019, I am building on it and that is what I am going to share with you.

At the beginning of 2018, I wrote down what would define a successful year for me on a whiteboard which was strategically placed close to my bed. That board also served as a planner for this blog and the delight that came with checking out those milestones was amazing. I always had a broad smile whenever I crossed out my ‘little’ successes.

I had my overall goals for the year written at the top and at the bottom were monthly plans as well as objectives for this blog. For instance, after I read a book and conducted a review for the blog, I crossed that out. When I planned to interview people for the blog and I successfully executed it, I crossed that out. Those moments felt like big achievements for me and I never failed to thank God and also pat myself at the back. They weren’t easy to do and they came with a lot of sacrifices but the joy of crossing and updating them monthly made it fun.

This year, my plans are even more elaborate. They have been grouped under several headings including personal, career, Christian life, blogger among others because I am living out Habakkuk 2:2,

Then the LORD told me: “I will give you my message in the form of a vision. Write it clearly enough to be read at a glance. 

I am going to lean on God’s grace and also put in my effort because I know His plans will reign supreme, therefore, I will keep communicating with Him to ensure we are on the same page. Note, Proverbs 19:21 says:

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.

My little advice: Don’t leave this year to chance. If huge organisations are setting S-M-A-R-T goals and targets and achieving them, how much more your personal life? God would love to see you succeed. When Elisha in 2 Kings 4 went to the widow’s house, he asked her what she had in her house and she responded:

“Your maidservant has nothing in the house but a jar of oil.”

The jar of oil served as a channel for the widow’s blessings. Talk to God regularly and let Him know what you have in your ‘house’ and heart in 2019. Create that plan. Place it somewhere visible and work on achieving them and that could be the conduit for your blessing. I recently read a post on Facebook about a man who created a 10-year educational plan when he only had a Diploma. He did not have the funds readily available but worked on the plan nonetheless and currently has a PhD. Isn’t that amazing?

Remember to engage with God constantly to ensure you are on the right path and 2019 will not be an ordinary year like previous ones.

P.S: Happy and Blessed New Year from us to you. Those following our other social media platforms have seen this appreciation note and here is yours:

Thank you 😘

It promises to be an exciting year for the blog and if I were you, I will keep telling others about it.

Happy New Year. May this year bring all that you’ve been praying for in Jesus’name! 😘😘😘

©

Our 3rd Wedding Anniversary and the 3 Lessons We’ve Learnt

19th December marked our wedding anniversary. Last year, I wrote a letter to my husband to mark our second anniversary but this year, we (my husband and I) would like to share three lessons we have discovered in the three years of being married. Please find my (Delali’s) lessons first: ☟

Lesson 1: Different Prayer Dynamics Needed for Marriage’s Success

I have never underestimated the importance of prayer to the success of every marriage but I discovered sometime last year that I had relegated personal prayer time to the background and was depending solely on my husband’s and family’s prayer times. This can happen to any family, particularly, if the head of the household is a strong Christian and you have regular family praying times. It, however, occurred to me that I needed to pray in order to become a better wife, a better mum and I needed to pray to commit my own ambitions into God’s hands. Yes, it is very important to pray as a family unit but it is also necessary to have your own prayer and quiet times. God may have words for you as you go on your knees to pray for you and your family.

Secondly, I knew where I wanted to be for instance, in my career, before I met my husband. He also had his own ambitions and dreams and marriage became that intercession for both of us. Even though we work hard to accommodate each other’s goals, sometimes it becomes challenging. In such instances, instead of praying selfish prayers of binding and losing when it is time to make sacrifices or accept my husband’s dreams (the very difficult ones) I rather pray for the ability to accept those changes and for God’s will to be done for the family.

Lesson 2: It is Possible to Do Everything and be Successful at it as a Mother and a Wife

Uh-huh! It is very much possible to achieve everything. 😊 Let me use me as an example, I am a mother of a two-year-old without any help, I do an 8 am – 4 pm and before that I went back to school (while pregnant). I manage the Social Media platforms for my church and currently leading a team to gather content for its magazine which will come out next year. I have this blog and its social media platforms to manage which I feed with original content and I am a WIFE😊. How do I combine these? I sacrifice a lot of sleep and I have a supportive husband. I also plan ahead of time and sleep a lot when I realise my body needs it. Do I get overwhelmed at times? Yes, I do and when that happens, I turn off my data and throw my phone away. I am strongly convicted that the world doesn’t wait for anyone because they are a wife or a mother. It is even tougher for us but no one should make excuses. We can be successful in every area of our lives. All things are possible – Matthew 19:26

Lesson 3: Sex in Movies are a Scam

Raise your hands if you believed having sex could as spontaneous and effortless as how we saw in movies or read from books while growing up. Don’t be deceived. Sex in marriage and, particularly, if you have a toddler involves a lot of strategies and tactics (blog post for another day). And if you have to combine that with the various roles you need to play, then it becomes very challenging and requires more effort than what is seen in movies.

Those are the three lessons I (Delali) have picked up so far. Below is my husband's (Emmanuel) perspective on the three years of our marriage:

Our 3rd wedding anniversary: What I have learnt so far – Emmanuel

  1. To have success in marriage, for me, has always been about following the principles outlined in the Bible. I’d often impress on her (Delali) that our wedding vows meant so much to me than her because the day it loses its value, she also loses value (take a second look at your wedding vow). The years spent together have been awesome during which I have mostly been occupied with giving my life for her because I love her (Don’t get it twisted; read Ephesians 5:25). Nothing short of seeing her smile and beam with joy. I gave, I am giving and would give. If you don’t give as a husband, “Wetin you gain”. Cheers to many more years of giving. (Editor’s Remarks: I can attest. Indeed, this man is a giver🤣).
  2. Delali epitomizes submission. (Editor’s Remarks:😑) For a woman like her, I would move heaven to make her happy ( I think I’m doing well so far). She never calls me ‘me wura’ (My Lord) but makes me feel like one. No man would exchange this for anything in this world (at least I won’t). I remember saying jokingly (after watching a Nigerian movie) that I won’t eat stale food in my house. ‘Like joke like joke’ (let me sound like a Ghanaian small) she cooks fresh food every day. Hardly do we eat stored food. How she does it I don’t know.
  3. Then we welcomed Lady Charis. The adorable young lady who turned two recently. Her introduction was met with mixed emotions (at least for me). Routines changed, sleep patterns were altered amongst others. Man know thyself, as intimated by the Bible (Psalm 31:7) just hit me (a story for another day). Our lives changed, however, we have been able to manage it well, steering our affairs in the right direction and maintaining the original purpose of marriage.
So there you have it. Here are some lessons we have learned in our three years of marriage. Are you married? What are some of the lessons you have picked up? Do you intend to get married soon? What are your expectations? Share with us in the comment box.

Gospel Sensation Michael Johnson Releases ‘Adom bi K3k3’

Dropping the latest album which seems to be an immediate hit in the Ashanti, Brong Ahafo and other regions in Ghana is gospel artist, Michael Johnson. MJ seems to have made waves with the album’s hit song ‘Adom Bi k3k3.’

The album, which was dropped just three days ago, has already provided Ghanaians with a toe-tapping melody and several other reasons to sing and praise God.

Minister Michael Johnson’s Album’s cover photo

The artist who is signed onto the Action Records Production headed by Desmond Osei Assibey and based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has linked his success to the grace and power of God, thus, the reason for how far he has come.

Left: Simon Obeng Takyi (Manager).                          Right: Mr Desmond Osei Assibey (Action Records Production USA CEO)

“I always recall how I started my music career some years ago in Kumasi with a desire and a passion to transform lives,” MJ said. “Although the journey has not been easy, I knew God had a purpose and a timing for my life and I am very grateful to Him for making ‘Adom bi k3k3’ a reality.”  

‘Adom bi k3k3’ which means ‘sufficient grace’ is Minister Michael Johnson’s first album under the Ghana- USA records label which also has artists such as Mr PHD of CrossOver (2017) and Isaac Frimpong of Medinkunim (2018) fame.

The cover song is engineered by Bassey Mix, one of Ghana’s number one recording studios and being promoted massively by the Ashanti Gospel Presenters Association (AGPA). This Association is linked to 20 biggest radio stations in the Ashanti region.

“I encourage my fellow gospel artist and everyone else to trust in the Lord, keep focused and above all, wait patiently on the Lord for in His own appointed time, He makes all things beautiful,” 

Michael Johnson

To listen to ‘Adom bi k3k3’ click here. 


For further information and bookings, contact Simon Obeng Takyi of Action Records Production on 0246088664.

Content Source: Gospel Bloggers Association

2 Christian Bloggers answer the Question, “Why should I Bother to Have my Quiet Time?”

Having one’s Quiet Time is one of the habits every Christian is encouraged to cultivate but what are the benefits? Two bloggers share their perspective on why it is necessary to have Quiet Time:

Robert Chamberlain – Christian Blogger, UK

Firstly, nowhere does the Bible say, “thou shalt have a daily quiet time!” But this doesn’t mean to say we shouldn’t. David, the man after God’s own heart is a great example. See for example the epic Psalm 119, his great “love song” as it were to the word of God, which he (on his best days) meditated on day and night

Robert Chamberlain

Here are other biblical examples on the need to have one’s quiet time:

  • Daniel prayed three times a day – Daniel 6:10
  • Jesus assumes we’ll pray, and encourages us to do so in private. He Himself would go away by Himself while it was dark, early in the morning, to pray – Mattew 6:6
  •  Paul encourages us to “pray continually” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16
  •  Luke commended the Bereans for daily searching the Scriptures to see if what Paul said was true – Acts 17:11

Robert is Christian Blogger and his blog address is https://roberlain.wordpress.com. His blog is also known as Watching Daily at Wisdom’s Gates 

Ken Dadson – Christian Blogger, Ghana

Quiet time is an essential part of every believer of Christ Jesus. It is in that state and process of mind and heart where we get the chance to commune with our Heavenly Father. It is an intimate act and a deliberate move of a born-again believer where we receive revelations, insight and heavenly information from God through the Holy Spirit, by spending time in the Word and prayer. There are so many benefits any believer of Christ Jesus can acquire through quiet time.

Ken Dadson

Here are some of the privileges.

  • During one’s quiet time, we develop and exercise our soul which is the mind, will, and emotions to line up with all the promises and purposes of God in His Word.
  • During Quiet time, we grow and also develop our faith and trust in God.
  • Quiet time also reveals hidden truths and revelations of God which has been hidden from the carnal man and has been revealed to us by His Spirit.
  • During our quiet time, we express our gratitude for the love our Heavenly Father has for us.
  • Quiet time also prepares us for the day because during that time, we hand over all our petitions and request to Him and we know and believe that as we do that we’re rest assured that He will take care of us. 

For Further Reading: 2 Timothy 2:15; Romans 10:17

Beloved, never live a day without spending quality time with our Father, for as you do that you become strong and immovable as Mount Zion in Jesus name. Amen!

Ken Dadson

Kenneth Dadson is based in Accra, Ghana and his Instagram handle is jesus.rocks285

Book Review: And the Shofar Blew

Francine Rivers, again, did an amazing job of telling the stories of several characters which made it so hard to put the book down without wondering how it was going to end. And the Shofar Blew was full of suspense and dealt with several topics including the challenges of managing a church, being a pastor’s wife and its difficulties, being a pastor’s kid and its associated challenges, ageing, death, divorce, alcoholism, among others. 

Even though the story had several characters weaving together the plot, And the Shofar Blew centred more on a young pastor, Paul Hudson, and his wife, Eunice and child. The excitement in the story began when Paul Hudson accepted the call to manage an old church that had its traditions and an ageing congregation. Pastor Hudson did bring some life into the church but they were mainly influences of his childhood and the relationship he had had with his father. Throughout the over 450-page book, the story gradually unfolds and the young pastor becomes over-ambitious and crude in his dealings and, the consequence could not have been devastating enough.

After I put the book down, my mind has been on a journey of wondering what goes on behind the scenes in our churches.  My thoughts have been on pastors and teachers who probably may have heeded to God’s call but due to increase in the numbers of their congregation, their church’s financial obligations and popularity are twisting His words to suit the people. How many men of God are preaching God’s unadulterated word that has the ability to cut hearts and save souls? 

This may not be a challenge for pastors alone but for those of us who are Christian blogging or singing or ministering in all forms. Since you saw an increase in the number of followers, have you been preaching God’s word or are massaging the truth in order to gain more followers? Do you present the message as it is or you are afraid of stepping on toes and losing your followers?

I have really been spending my week praying for pastors and everyone who has the responsibility of shepherding. It is my prayer that we keep spending time with God to know what He has given us to tell His people. There may be financial obligations but the sheep need to know God’s word. Let’s not massage God’s word for popularity sake.

The truth is Jesus Christ came to die for our sins and He is the way, the truth and the light. No one goes through the Father, except through Him. – John 14:6.

What message are you presenting to your followers?

©      

5 Blogging Subjects that Attract Wide Readership

Oursmiley community is gradually growing bigger. We have gained over 100 followers and to celebrate this achievement, we’d like to share blog subjects that attract a wide readership. This is based on the blog’s traffic statistics over the years and aimed at giving you some insight in case you are thinking of what to post on your blog.

Below are the subjects that attract a wide readership, starting from the bottom:

5 – Your Perspective

This, perhaps, is one of the easiest subject to write about. A Christian blogger may read a portion of the Bible or hear a sermon and may decide to share his/her perspective on the subject. The content may also be based on the writer’s revelation and depending on how the content is presented, this subject area may attract some readers. Your perspective will matter more if you are an expert in a particular field. For instance, people would click on the link to read a post if a successful musician shares tips on how to sell an album.

A blogger should not always share his/her perspective on subjects but rather find other ways of presenting them. One way of doing that is to give the subject area to other writers to develop and for you to feature their work on your blog. 

4 – Book Reviews

This is quite an interesting subject to blog about and one of the most demanding. It requires reading Christian literature and sharing your thoughts and critiquing the book’s content.  Well, depending on the country you are blogging from, this subject could be something to explore but the truth is when book reviews are done on this blog, the number of Ghanaian readers who click and read is not as high as other nationals, therefore, making it a tricky subject to blog on.

3 – Fiction

Christian fiction has a wide readership, particularly, if they are well-written, full of suspense and has some humour in them. This is an area to explore, especially, if your target readers are Ghanaians. If you have a perspective to share on a subject, you may want to think creatively and convert them into short stories to break the monotony of writing dissertations or thesis for your blog.

2 – Guest Blogs

Featuring other good writers on your blog is one of the quickest means of attracting readers and expanding your blog’s reach. If you have the time and the skill, interview other people [especially, those who do not like writing] on various subjects and post them on your blog. When such posts are featured on a blog, they attract readers, particularly, from the guest blogger’s circles. It is almost like a brand endorsement or social media influencer recommending your blog. 

1 – Personal Relatable Experiences

Based on this blog’s statistics, this is one of the most widely read subject areas.  Readers would want to know your personal life stories so instead of writing broadly on a subject and providing information on how to do something, it is better to package that into a personal testimony on how you overcame an addiction or met your spouse or how your tithing habit helped you to overcome poverty. Your relatable life testimony could be the life-changing agent for that reader going through a similar challenge. 

 

Are you a blogger? Which subject do your readers love?

Are you a blog reader? which one is your favourite? We’d love to know.