Over the years, I’ve seen and heard christian artistes say “Pastors and church leaders are not supportive of their ministries/art” and it is not just speculation, they (the artistes) really believe that the church leaders aren’t doing anything to support and appreciate their art.

Are the artistes right? Are the leaders of the church really unsupportive of christian artistes? are the expectations from the artistes justifiable? what is the position of scripture as to how church leaders should be involved with artistes and ministers alike? These and more i will attempt to answer in this article..

I once asked an artiste, “what do you expect from your church leader as regards being supportive of your art?”  He replied “Create opportunities/platforms for me to showcase my art by inviting me to minister on stage, sponsor certain projects and stuffs like that.”

This really is the mindset/expectations of most christian artistes. They believe that church leaders should invest more into artist development via sponsorship, patronage and the likes. While some may agree that these expectations are just, let’s find out from scripture what exactly is the job description of the leaders and how it relates to artist appreciation and development.

Ephesians 4:11-12 NKJV

“And He Himself gave some to  be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.”

From the above text, we can identify the five angles to church leadership and more so what their assignment is. The primary role of church leadership is to ‘equip’ ‘the saints’ for the ‘work’ of the ministry. First thing i’d like to point out is that the leaders aren’t called to do the work but to equip those (the members) who are to do them. Second implication of the above text is that every church member is called into ministerial work. This challenges the scope of reasoning we are used to because we think ministerial work is confined to the fore-walls of church and to the leaders but on the contrary, the ministerial work is for us (the saints).

Now onto the leaders, they are to equip! which means that the artiste’s expectation of support from the leaders are justified. Having established that, the next question is ‘How are the leaders expected to go about this equipping business?’ Quite straight forward i must say. The gift of the Spirit bestowed upon each leader gives a clear indication of how each is to go about equipping. If an apostle, he is to equip through apostleship. If a prophet, by prophesying. If an evangelist, by evangelism. If a teacher, by teaching and lastly by pastoring if a pastor.

From this perspective, we can now see that although the artistes are right to expect support from the leaders, they wrong on how the support should come. As an artiste, you fall into the ‘saints’ category and as such, you have the right to be grieved if the prophet isn’t guiding you in the prophetic, if the teacher isn’t teaching you the word that you clearly need to do the work and so on. But if they are working within the scope of their appointment, then you shouldn’t fault them for not equipping you the way you expect for their expectation to fulfill is God’s not yours.

But you need exposure and promotion, you need airplay and screen time, you need sponsorship for your tours and concerts, you need to be able to market your art and so on. How are all these to come about? The SAINTS. As it is your ministerial duty to be an artist, it is the ministerial duty of some other saint sitting in the congregation to be a marketer, another a TV/radio station owner, another an on-air personality, another a concert promoter, another a financial investor etc. Your work ought to be your ministry. Because most people are not aware or are negligent of this duty, you discover that the expectations from the leaders are enormous and out of place.

Dear Artiste, who do you need to play your songs? An OAP not your church leader. Who do you need to get sales for your Cd’s? A marketer not your church leader. Who do you need to get you performance opportunities? A manager not your church leader. Who do you need to finance a project of yours? A financial investor not your church leader. Whatever it is you think you need to excel in your ministry, it has be deposited into several individual accounts that each may supply one to the other for overall growth of the body. (As seen in vs 16 of our anchor text.)

The duty of the leader is to equip the financial investor, the promoter, the marketer, the artiste and everyone else in the same manner; through their spiritual gifts while it is expected of the saints to consolidate with one another to experience growth and effectiveness in the carrying out of their ministerial duties that none may be left struggling.

Again if the leaders are not fulfilling their part to equip the saints, then you have a right to be aggrieved. But if they are, shove your grievances asides and network with your fellow saint to execute whatever you have plans to do.

This is no rocket science. Do we not have Christians who are radio and TV station owners? Do we not have Christians who are OAP’s? Do we not have Christians who are promoters and managers?! Quite clearly we do! As a matter of fact, we have more professing Christians in entertainment/art than those of other religions so why then are christian artistes suffering/complaining of neglect?! it just shows how unhealthy the state of the flock is. In line with this, church leaders will have to take that equipping business more seriously to make the saints aware that your work is your ministry and a fellow saint needs you to be able to do theirs more effectively.

Dear artiste, clearly you can see that your expectations from the leaders were misguided. what you seek is not standing on the pulpit before you, it is sitted in the pew right beside you.

Let the word guide our hearts aright.

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BOUND

Posted: January 28, 2017 in Uncategorized

​i’ve been told: that being commited is bondage..but bondage never feels this free or how being stuck with one bores yet boredom has never been more intriguing…Gallons of water may make an ocean but a cup is mine, so i drink from my cistern alone because only in you my satisfaction i find.. 

How you rose into my life and turned this desert into a beautiful garden..if marriage is indeed prison, i couldn’t have asked for a better warden.. on my own, i’m an irregular piece of a jigsaw puzzle but fitting into you reveals the most beautiful portrait ever painted; US! 

your love for me has dug a bottomless pit in my heart because its unending, now i can’t get enough of you for my hunger of you is filled with more hunger..How can i live without you? I’m like a kid in a candy store, everything i find in you is sweet! I’m not bothered about tooth aches for as long as i’m close-up with you i’ll flourish. My jokes are lame but you laugh anyways, thanks for the crutches..

i always thought being a rib was worthless considering my past encounters with dogs but now i feel safe in your care like you are a doctor of orthopedics.. Even when our world goes dark, the resulting sparks from the collision of our souls would light our path and with our two great lights, we’ll never have any worry about sights.. 

A MAN UNDER AUTHORITY

Posted: June 25, 2015 in Uncategorized

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I was trapped sometime ago in traffic when the presidential motorcade drove past and while we waited, someone said “I thought Mr President would be driven in a simple car seeing that he comes across as simple individual.” As he yet spoke, i began to ponder on the subject and then i came to an understanding of what it means to be a man under authority.
Yes he may indeed be a simple individual who would prefer not to be associated with the flashy things of life but once he became the president of the Federal Republic, he siezed to have a life of his own and now lives a life as dictated by the authority by which he is made president. He may prefer to drive or be driven around in a single ‘everyday’ car but as the GCFR, the office he occupies requires him to be driven in a special class mercedes benz to which he must oblige.
But no only his choice of car but where he goes, when he goes, with whom he associates, what he says, where he lives and so on. Although being under authority comes with its own privileges, it also requires that you forfeit your ‘rights’ and preferences as an individual.

Away from the GCFR to the diplomatic society. A diplomat is a representative of a country or government in a foreign land. And while in active service, he stands as the intermediary between both countries hence whatever he says or does is assumed to be voice or act of the country he represents. As a diplomat, you don’t just go where you want to go, you don’t say what you want to say, you don’t get to express your feelings, you certainly don’t act the way you would want to but in accordance to the authority which you represent because of the place of authority you occupy, knowing that the authority comes before any personal preference.

So scripture says “We are ambassadors of Christ” (2Cor 5:20) which implies that as an earthly diplomat represents his government, we also ought to represent Christ and to effectively do that, we are required to forfeit our ‘rights’ and preferences. Hence as representatives of Christ, we no longer get to do what we feel like, say what we want how we want, we don’t get to dress the way we feel, go wherever we desire whenever we so do and so on, our everyday life must reflect the values of the government we represent.
Sometimes there may be nothing wrong with what we desire but as  people under authority, we are called to live a surrendered life which requires that we sacrifice even our legitimates for the sake of the kingdom.
Know this, that how we present ourselves is the way the people will see Christ. If we present ourselves as loving people, then Christ will be seen as loving and if we present ourselves as unruly, Christ is seen as such because we are the Christ they see, which is why God would say “My Name is blasphemed among the gentiles because of you.” (Ezekiel 36:22).

To this end, if indeed we are ambassadors of Christ, we must let go of ourselves that Christ might be seen in and through us. As a man under authority, you are dead to yourself. This the apostle Paul understood hence the statement “I have been crucified with Christ, it is no longer I who live but Christ lives in me.” (Gal 2:20)
Let this be your watch word O ambassador of Christ, that Christ now lives in you and as such, you no longer get to do whatever pleases you but that which pleases Him whom you represent.

The life of an ambassador is that of maturity as it requires total and utmost surrender.
For “when you were young, you girded yourself and did what you wished; but when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and another will gird you and carry you where you do not wish.” (John 21:18)

Recognise God’s authority over your life today and submit yourself to it that He might be glorified in you. This is what it means to have the ‘mind of Christ’.

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Having seen how much loss have befallen us in the death of our officers and men most of whom were still in their youth, i couldn’t help but wail with a broken heart and a sober spirit. And while in the midst of such grieving times, a word came to me; a word that broke my heart the more, much more than the news of the death of these vibrant young men/women. i title this SACRIFICE.
Once upon a time, because mankind was in a fallen state, God instituted the system of atonement, wherefore, once a year, the high priest must enter into the holy of holies to present the blood for the remission of his sins and that of the entire Israel until the next year. This is so critial because the fate of the people rested upon the high priest and the acceptance of their own sacrifice was dependent on whatever went down between God and the high priest. All of the people looked to the high priest to present his sacrifice before the Lord which when accepted is an assurance that theirs too is accepted because he, the high priest advocates for the people.
But in these times, seeing that the blood of animals couldn’t provide eternal remission, God has appointed for Himself a new High priest with a new order; Jesus Christ, who presented His blood as the token of atonement once and for all, that in Him, we might recieve eternal remission of sin by believing in Him and in His sacrifice and live in the confidence that every other sacrifice is accepted by God in Him seeing that He entered and remains in the holiest for all men.
Now therefore beloved, you who give up your freedom that the rest of us may live freely, you who put yourselves in danger while patroling the streets night & day that the rest of us may live in safety, you who forsake the comfort of your families and loved ones that we may enjoy the company of ours, i write this in hope that you be reconciled to God in Christ Jesus. For if you are yet in Him, there remains a need for the remission of your sins. I beg you with urgency, to trust in the sacrifice of our eternal High Priest; Jesus Christ, for in so doing, you not only obtain remission of sin but also acceptance; that these sacrifices you offer up daily may be acceptable in the sight of God who reigns forever.
For until you do, Dear beloved, i’m afraid (and i say with deep sadness) that the sacrifice of your time, energy, relationships, freedom, even the ultimate sacrifice of your life will be worthless and unacceptable to God, seeing that it is presented outside of His High Priest and of His divine order. And so it will be that having spent your life in service, it ends up being in vain.
Thanks for all you do; i and mine remain indebted and grateful to you; Our country remains indebted to you.
But please, my debt to you will mean nothing if your sacrifice is unaccepted. Make it count! God bless you.

Scriptural References; Leveticus 16, Romans 3:25, Hebrews 4:14-16, 5:1-11, 7,8,9 & 10.

the wall 2

A wall is a structure that provides security/protection over a defined area. It is usually erected either to protect outsiders from what is inside, or to protect insiders from the world outside. A wall can also be erected for control i.e. to regulate the activities of those within. One of the reasons why walls are erected is fear; the fear of what those inside can do (as in a penitentiary), or the fear of what those outside can do (as in house fences). This fear basically comes from what you have seen and/or heard, first hand experiences or that of others shared.

In the context, relationship, most people erect walls in an attempt to protect themselves from the world outside while a few do so to protect the world from themselves; the man/woman within. For those who had been hurt and/or betrayed, a wall is erected so they don’t have to go through the hurt and pain again while for those who are witnesses to the experiences of the former, it’s so they don’t have to experience it themselves. For those who feel they are the cause of pain to others, it is so that no one will ever have to suffer in their hands again.

CHARACTERISTICS OF THE WALL

  • The height of the wall is determined by the level of fear in its builder. The wall erected by one who’d been hurt once and that of one who’d gone through several heartbreaks cannot be the same.
  • The wall when erected shuts out everyone from coming in; the good & the bad, those you want to keep away and those you have dire need for.
  • The wall creates a false reality; that only the life of pain and bitterness within the wall is real, love and happiness is illusory.
  • Within the wall, you are confined to only two aspects of reality; the past and a present being governed by your past. The future is hardly ever imagined without the domination of the past. The wall makes you myopic.
  • The wall tells you that everyone else is the problem so you don’t see the need for self-examination and possible correction where needed.
  • The longer you stay confined within the wall, the slimmer your chances of ever being able to take it down.
  • At the initial stage, you build the wall but at the latter stages, the wall builds you.
  • The wall is only attracted to those in a similar situation as you because it feeds on their experiences and uses the fear generated to grow stronger and taller.
  • The wall tells you that ‘the next is just like the ex, why go through that again?!’
  • The wall gains more strength from prejudices and assumptions.
  • The wall kills every atom of hope and aspiration you may have concerning future relationship success.
  • The wall never heals. If anything, it merely places a band aid over the wound without any medication.
  • It never gets better within the wall. The state you were in when the wall was erected is the state you’ll remain in until the wall is pulled down.
  • The wall claims it’s looking out for you but in truth, it’s only looking out for itself. Try taking it down and see!
  • The wall kicks out every genuine attempt to help you because it sees that as a threat to its existence and rightly so.
  • The wall is like a prison guard who keeps you locked in and is swift to interrupt once he feels you are getting too close to someone from the outside.
  • The wall is a parasite; it feeds off you in other to stay alive.
  • The wall tells you that you’ll never feel the pain of betrayal again as long as you remain in it but it never mentions that you’ll also never experience the beauty of love no more.
  • The wall tells you that the promise of light is a deception just so you can remain within the darkness it brings.
  • The wall is sick and obsessed. He will rather kill you that see you being happy with anyone else other than himself.
  • The wall will lose his hold over you when you truly understand what love and being in love really entails.

You see, you can’t truly love without putting yourself in harms’ way; for to love is to be vulnerable. And as sad as it may sound, true love never promises that its recipient will reciprocate, it only hopes that it does. No matter how well you nurture a rose, it never grows without thorns, so you see that the fire is what makes the gold pure. If there was no exam, how would you prove that love never fails?! If there was no attempted rivalry, how can you say for sure that love never envies?! If she’s not been faced with the lie, how would love rejoice in the truth?! If there was nothing to suffer, why would love need to endure all things?!

Love says be meek; the wall says you’re weak. Love aims at the petals; the wall focuses on the thorns. Love says apologise; the wall says you were never wrong. Love says don’t be rude; the wall says every chic is better with a little attitude. Notice that the wall is against everything that love stands for. And if God is love, who then is the wall?! Think about it!

COKE BOTTLES ARE OVERRATED

Posted: March 23, 2015 in Uncategorized

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Have you ever walked into the mall to buy an empty bottle of coke? So what’s the big hype about the “coke bottle” figure that pop culture is eagerly selling these days?

From music videos to movie screens, red carpet parades and all that, one is readily greeted with the view of a woman with enormous body curves being celebrated as the ideal woman or at least, what she should look like. This trend has seen a huge number of women engage in surgical procedures to increase their body frame and curves, just so they can meet up to this requirement of being today’s woman.

Worse than this display of inferiority complexes, is the fast spreading deception that your body frame as a woman is what earns or keeps your man. Again I ask who goes to the mall just to buy an empty coke bottle? These days’ people opt for cans or plastics as well as bottles but in spite of the difference in preference, they all want coke! The role of the package is simply to attract you to the content so it’s folly to spend your capital on the package when you don’t have content.

What happens when you buy an item only to discover that what is inside isn’t what was portrayed on the pack? You feel cheated. You are most likely to ask for a refund from the seller or discard the item in rage and anger. How much more when you discover that the pack is empty? The consequences are devastating as shown by the ever increasing rate of divorce and single motherhood.

Now more than ever, we see women fill themselves up with implants. Still, the stats aren’t in their favour as more and more marriages are hitting rock bottom while even more ladies end up being unmarried single parents. Where are the men? Why aren’t they staying? The curves are getting wider and wider while at the same pace, commitment is getting thinner and thinner. What does that tell you?  The booty might get him but it sure won’t keep him; content is absolute while packaging is relative. Figure is worthless without content just as a coke bottle is without the coke in it.

I think it’s about time we tell ourselves the truth and place emphasis on what is most essential; CONTENT DEVELOPMENT. Develop and build your content first before you start thinking about packaging. If Coca Cola had spent their business career focusing on the shape of the bottle instead of the coke itself, would you even use it as a reference point for your body frame today? Think about it!

So I carried out a quick survey on my BBM where I asked some guys “What are the top 5 attributes you seek when you’re looking to date a woman?”

Below are their responses

  1. Aiken: In no particular order her hair, her fashion sense, her height, level of intelligence and her love for God.
  2. Kaybee: Beauty (in & out), character, education (enlightenment & intelligence), her background and her level of contentment.
  3. Ace Ibrahim: Her faith, character, looks, family and orientation.
  4. Monlee: Godliness, hard work & focus, healthy relationships, self-care and her ability to be taught.
  5. Foursyte: Intelligence, beauty, God fearing, hard work and understanding.
  6. Bidemi: Understanding, hardworking, supportive (not being overly dependent & able to support you in all aspects), God fearing and same vision (& complimentary efforts).
  7. DjEnersty: God fearing, supportive, beautiful and independent.
  8. eazY: In no particular order she must have a great music taste and be musically gifted, be in love with Jesus, beautiful and adorable, funny.
  9. Demola: She has to be expressive and fun to be with, not self-centred, kind, empathetic and prayerful.
  10. Lutor: Honors God’s word, intelligent, funny, confident and beautiful.
  11. Mac D: God fearing, learning spirit, beautiful, character/attitude and her ability to cook.
  12. Samson: Her understanding of life & its realities, attitude, how motherly she is (home management), not boring and spiritual.
  13. Gold: Godly, knowledgeable in entertainment/fashion, love for children, teachable, fluency in English & at least one local dialect.
  14. Greatman: Beautiful, intelligent, hard work, visionary and a love for God.
  15. Shola: loves God, common purpose, intelligent/smart, ability to cook & love for hip-hop and looks/body.

Haven heard from the men, let’s do a little calculation. On an average, the attributes they seek are as follows:

  1. Godly
  2. Intelligence
  3. Looks
  4. Character
  5. Hardworking

Assuming your coke bottle physique is what was referred to as “looks”, if that’s all you’ve got. 1/5 isn’t known to be a pass mark is it? Let’s build ourselves for the better.

NB: This article does not exclude the aspect that men are said to be made of beards and abs which have also seen a stereotypic look at the modern man. It does however aim that while appearance is needful, it shouldn’t be the primary reason why anyone should go into a relationship whether male or female. Also, I’m not in any way suggesting that the increasing rate of failed marriages or single motherhood is entirely the fault of the female gender as that will be irrational and insensitive given that men share the same amount of responsibility in seeing a marriage work as do the women.

To have a perfect body frame without good character is nothing more than having a skull with no brain. – Kruseaphix.

DEATH; THE BEAUTY OF LIFE

Posted: March 13, 2015 in Uncategorized

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It’s amazing that via death the perfection of life and its beauty is revealed! (An excerpt from a poem of mine ‘Amazing’)

Haven given much thought to life, I discovered a simple truth, that we can never truly appreciate life without the consciousness of death. Given all the sadness and hurt that is often associated with death, there’s also this realization it brings along with it: everything around us is temporary; from money to relationships, pleasure, pain, success, failure and everything you can think about. Once this reality dawns on you, it is bound to initiate either of these two types of responses: that life in itself is meaningless since it cannot be held onto, and as such you denature every atom of essence you had once ascribed to it, leading to a carefree approach to all that surrounds you, OR that life should be maximized at every turn because there’s no guarantee of a second chance, which prompts you to ascribe more value to life, leading to a careful approach to all that surrounds you. Of these two responses, one causes you to undermine the fundamentals of life like love and relationships and the other causes you to highly esteem them. One leads to a passive approach to life; the other ignites a proactive response. With one, you simply live to die and with the other, you die to live. Either ways, death throws a coin to your face and the side you choose to focus on is totally dependent on you.

Too many people spend their last moments in retrospect; regretting certain decisions they made; wishing they had taken certain steps they avoided; hoping for a chance to right some of their wrongs or at least attempt to; disgusted at the fact that they have given their all to one part of their life only to realize that, that part of them wasn’t the most important. At the harvest, that’s when the wheat are separated from the tares and how it will hurt to discover that you have spent your time, energy and resources nurturing weeds instead of the good seeds. For these people, the reality of death struck them at a moment too late. They were so busy trying to live whilst numb to the sure cold embrace of death, they ran without keeping the end in perspective and as a result of which, the race was vague; They chased everything but caught little or nothing. ‘For where there’s no vision, the people are without restraint.’

But this does not have to be you. Yes experience is a good teacher but it doesn’t have to be yours. Here’s an opportunity to learn from the mistakes of others at no cost at all. If you will just take a moment to go through the following exercises, I assure you, your approach to life and your life in itself will never remain the same. By investing the next couple of minutes, you are sure to save a whole lifetime.

EXERCISE

(Separating the wheat from the tares.)

exercise

  1. Write down the five things that mean the most to you in life.
  2. On a scale of 1-10, how much is your input on them (By this I mean your time, energy and resources)
  3. Write down five things you want to be remembered for by the following sets of people:
  • Your parents (if they are still alive)
  • Your child/children
  • Your spouse
  • Your friends
  • Your Church/Religious association
  • Your colleagues
  • Your country

4. If you die now, will your world (the above stated sets of people) we better off or ruined without you?
5. If indeed there are such places as heaven and hell, if you pass away at this moment, where are you headed?

NB: if you aren’t married or you are without a child, answer questions 3 i & ii regardless for it will help you prepare for their coming. Also, be sure to write down your answers in a journal or in a choice book of yours and not on a random sheet of paper; that way, you can easily go back to them when the need arises. It is important that you keep them ever before you. If you can, stick them with a sticker pad or with a pin on your bed-head, close to your dressing mirror or on the door of your room; that way you will never forget to run by them. Given that your priorities can be subject to change, if there arise such changes, be sure to modify them in the journal or book wherein the previous ones were written.

Majority of the questions are relationship-centered because from my observation, that is the core of our existence on earth and by building healthy relationships, you are in turn building a healthy life.

“It is vanity to spend your whole life living for your loved ones without spending as much time living with them.” – Kruseaphix

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