MEET BRENDA:ON THE PERSONAL DEVOTION OF A CHRISTIAN.
By: Lizzy Oyebola Yakubu
My name is Brenda.
I welcome you today to this amazing episode of your Friday evening programme ‘Meet Brenda’
I have about five minutes with you so I will be quick. Stay tuned.
I fell in love with a guy three years ago and I must confess that the first year was an amazing ride with him. He was such a wonderful sweetheart.
Awesome fireworks sparked in me as I said yes to his proposal and all went well for while- yes, for a while!
It came to a point I found him too burdensome! He loved me quite alright but I struggled to talk to him, I must be sincerely with you!
In the morning, very early morning when I see his calls, I would drop them quickly and sleep off again. I would apologize to him during the day and he would forgive me. That was how it was for a long time.
One day, he called me ‘Brenda. Do you really love me? I want to talk to you in the morning before you get busy. I want to talk to you at night so we can gist about the day. Why don’t you give me a chance? Why do you reject all my calls? Do you really love me? Or are you just keeping me as a spare?’
That day was the turning point!
The day my Lord, my Lover, my Saviour, the Holy Spirit, opened up to say to me ‘Are you just keeping me as a spare?’
How dare me!
I smacked myself many times. My personal devotion altar had actually gone cold! And I was at the losing end. I had no joy, no peace, no coherence, no love- the sparks I had felt the day I said yes to the Lord were dead! I was only struggling and pushing it!
‘Tomorrow Lord, I will talk to You. Early in the morning, I will pick Your calls.’ I promised and quickly set alarm- 4.30am.
I woke up to urinate at 4.10am and my heart sunk. No way! Let me sleep for just 20 minutes Lord. I will be back.
‘We could just have a discussion now, don’t you think….?’ The Spirit would ask and I would shake my head in the negative, sleepily.
Almost immediately I had sunk into my bed, my alarm would start blaring.
‘Uggghhhhhhh!’ I would cover my ears and with closed eyes reached for my phone to snooze the alarm.
It would blare again- I would snooze it again and again and again and again.
At the fourth to fifth snooze, I would suddenly remember my resolution. How I had promised to give the Lord the focal point of my life and not the spare, not the crumbs. I would jump up with a start to check my phone.
‘Jesus is Lord!’
Resumption at work was supposed to be 7.30am.
The rush would begin as soon as I jumped up. As I washed my teeth into the wash basin, I would look into the mirror and pity myself.
‘Lord I’m sorry’
As I bathed, I would sing ‘I will sing unto the Lord, a joyful song, I will praise His Name for the Lord is good’
After that, I would play one of Rev. Helen Adegoke’s messages and start to oil my body.
‘Yes Lord. Hmmmm…Amen! Thank You Jesus.’
I would quickly stop the sermon and whisper a word of prayer.
‘Lord, thank You for such an amazing time in Your Presence. Thanks for speaking to me. I will listen to the remaining when I come back from work. Thank You Lord.’
Tucking my phone in my bag I would be out to catch the next bike. On the bike, I would try severally to remember what I had listened to from the part of the sermon.
That struggle continued for a while until the day I became angry!
The temptations I wouldn’t easily give in to before became an easy trap! Any small thing, I would find myself lying!
Me? Sister Brenda, lying? Ah!
I found myself comparing myself with others and getting really moody.
I would smile at people who offend me but in my heart, I found myself hating them!
I had no immunity against temptation again! I had heartbreaks; I lost some good friends (Yeah, I pushed them all away when they all seemed too righteous but I was the one who had become too alien!); I had issues with my parents and siblings and relatives, just everyone and I was wasting my money; I could eat a five litre bowl of food per day and see so many episodes of movies till I sleep off on top of my laptop after!
One day, all these things weighed me down and I wept.
‘Lord I know. I know where all these things are coming from. You said I should pray so I shouldn’t faint. You did. You did. Of course it’s in prayers a Christian develops immunity against sin, Satan, sicknesses, attacks and evils. It’s in prayers a Christian becomes more like Christ. I am sorry Lord. For being so proud to think I could survive without You, I am sorry Lord’
I wept so bitterly that day. I felt like an caught adulterous woman who had come back home to beg her husband. I wept till I was satisfied that I had wept! Haha. It wasn’t funny. After crying, I had a warm bath and brought out by dusty prayer notes and Bible.
I came up with a plan and went on my knees, presenting it to the Lord and asking Him to bless the plan and make it work.
He did bless it!
I am now a glowing Christian!
Because I feed well on the Heavenly supplies provided me during my constant, continuous personal fellowship with God, I am healthy!
I am happy! I am joyful! And I carry the joy everywhere! I bring everyone to the Light everyday!
How did I do it? I simply asked myself three questions:
1. Why can’t I pray in the early mornings and late nights?
2. Who is my greatest enemy?
3. What can I do to deal with my greatest enemy?
And gbam! The answers to these questions changed it all for me.
1. Why can’t I pray?: I sleep late. Why do I sleep late? Because I see movies and chat about mundane things with friends on phone. Why do I do that? To catch up and feel good.
2. Who is my greatest enemy?: It’s me! I want to satisfy me! I want to please me! I want me to rest! I cannot kill me! I cannot stress me! I don’t want me to fall sick! I me, I me, I me, I me!!
3. How do I deal with me? That is my own strategy which I will share with you now.
First, I make sure nothing enters my stomach again after 8pm so I would feel light the next morning.
Whenever my alarm blares off at 4.30am, I jump up. Normally, my brain would still be very sleepy so it is the one I would need to wake up! Once the brain is fully awake, it would wake the whole body!
I would drag myself to the bathroom, urinate, wash up and then come out again.
I would switch on the light if there is electricity supply or switch on my hallogen lamp (I had to go buy a new one as my phone torch can’t do the job!)
Why do I need light? (When your eye sees light, your brain will release certain neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and dopamine, which can elevate your mood and wake your brain up fully.)
Have you seen why you doze up sometimes while using a lantern or your small phone torch? The brain isn’t fully excited well! Personally, I would fill my space with light!
With the light on, I would plug in my ears and play ‘Lion and the Lamb’ or ‘You are the Balm of Gilead’ or just any song so inspirational and loud.
With my ears plugged, I would do a few press-ups or sit-ups to further ensure that I am awake.
The bathroom would be my next port of call. By then, the song I had listened to would be on top of my tongue. After pouring cold water- cold, on myself, I would come out shivering like a wet puppy.
Sometimes if I can’t bear the cold water, I would only sprinkle some on my face.
By the time I sit at my prayer table, I would fire on without any restriction! And if I feel sleepy again, I would chew some healthy gums. I bought a pack and placed on my table.
After chewing off the sweetness of the gum, I would spew it into the bin and start to walk to and fro my room, calling God beautiful Names!
Then, I would pray and study! I would make requests and hear God speak. I would learn from God and write the lessons down in my notes.
Things started coming back into place. I would get early to the bus park to wait for the staff bus; I would be alert and quickened in my heart all through the day; I would laugh when temptation comes and push it away with the tip of my finger; I smile more often; I see revelations and hear God more!
All because I dealt with ‘me’ in order to speak to Him!
What name do you give to all the activities I have stated above?
Show me a Christian without discipline and I will show you a vulnerable person for he is a timebomb waiting to explode!
It takes a whole lot of discipline and exercises to make a warrior!
Galatians 5:17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.
Feed your spirit and your flesh will sleep off.
Feed your flesh and your spirit will sleep off!
Do all it takes to ensure you pray! Let all you do revolve round prayer! Let prayer lead!
It’s a busy generation, I know! But let’s be guarded! Let’s be guided! If we allow the 21st century effects to sweep us off, it would be disastrous. Train your flesh to submit to your spirit, daily!
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Till I come your way again with another episode of ‘Meet Brenda’, stay awake in your spirit!
Till I come your way again with another episode of ‘Meet Brenda’, stay awake in your spirit!
# Christian stories
I have read this before on Facebook but it is evergreen. Thank you sis, thank you over again. I am charged
Oh my God!!! I am blessed!
Thanks so much for this post sis. Very timely.
Thanks for this, it came at the right time. God bless you ma’am.