GOFAMINT Moferere District Christmas Retreat with Pastor (Prof.) S.O. Ewuola [DGO]
Christmas (old English: cristesmaesse, meaning “Christ’s mass”) is an annual commemoration of the birth of Jesus and a widely observed holiday, celebrated generally on December 25 by millions of people around the world. A feast central to the Christian liturgical year, it closes the advent season and initiate the twelve days of Christmastide. Christmas is a civil holiday in many of the world’s nation, is celebrated by an increasing number of non-Christians, and is an integral part of the Christmas and holiday season.
The popular celebratory customs associated in various countries with Christmas having a mix of pre-Christian, Christian and secular themes and origins. Popular modern customs of the holiday included gift giving, Christmas music and caroling, an exchange of Christmas cards, church celebrations, a special meal and the display of various Christmas decorations including Christmas trees, Christmas lights, nativity scenes, garlands, wreaths, mistle toe and holly. In addition, several closely and often interchangeable figures known as Santa Claus, Father Christmas, Saint Nicholas and christkind, are associated with bringing gifts to children during the Christmas season and have their body of traditions and lore.
One of the most celebratory customs in various countries associated with Christmas is church celebrations, over the years, The Gospel Faith Mission Int’l has always been celebrating Christmas with a retreat which include various activities. This year retreat of The Gospel Faith Mission Int’l, Moferere district was a superb one as the deputy general overseer of the mission, Prof. S.O. Ewuola grace the occasion, and was also the guest speaker.
The deputy general overseer lectured a family series teaching titled “WINNING THE BATTLE AT THE HOME FRONT”
WINNING THE BATTLE AT THE HOME FRONT
There is potential danger or trouble in every home, whether you like it or not, they are there. There is no way you can run away from them, the sources and channel for them are actively open. Your salvation cannot prevent it, your labour for God cannot avert it, your commitment to God cannot remove it, your holiness cannot revert it, they are there by the fact of the community you were born into. They are there by the fact of the society you live in. they are there by the circumstances of your birth, by the fact of your educational positioning, by the fact of your economy solvency etc, there is no way you run away from them, you cannot faith them away, you cannot wish them away, you cannot pray them off. Your holiness cannot take away problems from the home, you cannot prevent troubles.
Only two things can prevent them; the first is if you do not have a home, or you do not come from one or you do not live in one. The second one is if you do not live with some people, if you are a hermit.
- A man’s enemies will be the members of his own household………..matt. 10:36
THE SIGNIFICANCE OF ADDRESSING THIS TOPIC
- Whether you like it or not, there are enemies within, there are enemies without.
- Enemies within (at the home front) are more dangerous than the enemies without.
- You cannot avoid it.
- Enemies within and without can be in collusion.
- You are product of your environment.
- The undoing of some people is due to unsettled family problems.
EXAMPLES OF TROUBLES IN FAMILIES
- Sarah and Hagar……….Gen 16.
- Esau and Jacob……………….Gen. 25
- Leah and Rachael……………….Gen. 29
- Hannah and Peninnah………..1 Sam. 1
SOURCES OF DANGER IDENTIFIED
- Wealth- Gen. 13 vs. 2 and 5 tells us that Abraham and Lot were rich.
- Togetherness vs. 6- living together, doing business together
- Professional struggle- competition for grazing land for their cattle vs. 7
- Housing or residential accommodation- competition by the herdsmen for tent space v7.
- Professional insecurity
- Social inequality
PRESENT DAY ADDITIONAL SOURCES OF PROBLEMS
- Demonic sources
- Non-demonic sources
- Foreseen Destiny
- Care-free attitude
- Uncontrolled or improperly handled discussions, arguments and emotions
- Sex denial between spouses
- Poor handling of home disagreements
POTENTIAL STRENGTH OF THE DANGER
- Hatred…………………………………………………….Matt. 5:43-45
- Fighting……………………………………………………Gen. 13:7
- Full-scale war
- Keep the devil out
HOW ABRAHAM HANDLED HIS TROUBLE IN THE HOME
- Plea for peace
- Identity relationship
- Suggested separation
- Sacrificial offer-you choose first
- Demonstrate love and concern
- Demonstrate maturity
- Access divine wisdom
- Show humility
- Demonstrate contentment and patience
QUALITIES THAT CAN TERMINATE YOUR TROUBLES BEFORE THEY GROW UP
- Brotherly love and concern
- Maturity and Initiative
- Divine Wisdom
- Contentment and Patience
YOU CAN WIN YOUR OWN BATTLE
Battles from the home front vary very widely in
– Origin, source and cause
– The casual agent and/or link agents
But they have the same goal:
– To steal
– To kill
– To destroy
(a) Keep the devil out of it
(b) Take fast decisive action
Suggested Handling Procedure
(i) Acquire genuine salvation
(ii) Do a thorough situation analysis
(iii) Soak the issue generously in prayer
(iv) Act with divine wisdom……where and when God leads, it’s the best path. where He does not, be wise and use His word.
(v) Set your priorities right
(vi) Be prepared to give and take
(vii) Rationalize properly there is nothing too great to lose as long s it does not compromise your life,spirituality,jeopardize the word of God and does not implicate you in sin or lead you to sin
(viii) Avoid unnecessary criticism but be generous with praise and appreciation
(ix) Be wise
(x) Be patient, Be sincere. Lay all the cards on the table. Act in love
(xi) Be sensitive and vigilant.
– Olaoluwa Stephen
From Akure,reporting for HBN news.