I am really sorry for sending this super late today, I had an impromptu assignment the Lord sent me on and so I’m just getting round to doing this.
Today our focus is on the third part of our verse for yesterday which says “ 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. “-1 Thessalonians 5: 18
I wrote a piece on gratitude last year that I think would help put things into context. Please see below:
“Leading up to planning the 2020 Do It Afraid Conference, the Lord taught me about gratitude. We had planned to pre-record the panel discussion and we postponed it to the Sunday before the conference because of the endsars protests in Nigeria. First of all, the moderator for the panel couldn’t make it because she was ill and then out of 9 panelists only three could join that day. With all the obstacles, I was still bent on pre-recording until the night before when I felt really down and didn’t feel like going for the pre-recording the next day and so I sent my director a message saying I didn’t feel like doing it. He sent me a message in the morning asking how I was feeling and I told him I was feeling deflated. I then went on a rant about all the things that were wrong. One of the things that bothered me was that I had expected God to provide for the conference the way I thought He would and when a week to the conference He hadn’t, I was sad. I really wanted to cancel the pre-recording but because I had paid quite a huge sum of money that my husband had given me for the venue for the pre-recording, I was reluctant to cancel because I didn’t want to lose the money or have to ask for it back. As I was ranting about all the bills I had, a friend then sent me a message about some money I owed her and this made me feel even worse.
My director Oyakhire responded saying He had prayed and that our Father has heard everything that I have said. He then said I should take some time to thank God that morning, play music and then reach out to him later that day before the planned pre-recording.
I obeyed him and then I fell asleep while worshipping and had a dream. In the dream God instructed me to give the money I had paid for the pre-recoding to the company who owned the venue we wanted to use, as a seed towards the work they were doing with less privileged children. That was my major concern in postponing the event. Therefore, I was relieved that I didn’t have to request for the money back and relieved it wasn’t wasted money but a seed towards helping the less privileged children. Also, my makeup artiste didn’t turn up so I figured God wanted me to post pone and record the panel session live on the day.
Later that day God taught me about gratitude. I was led to listen to one of Bill Johnsons sermon and He was talking about being thankful and He quoted 1 Thessalonians 5:16 in the Bible which says 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
He said most of the time we are praying to know Gods will but that God has told us what His will is in 1 Thessalonians 16-18. He then said that God expects us to rejoice always. He talked about how rejoicing is a choice and not a feeling and that we must get to the point where we choose to rejoice no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in.
He talked about the importance of giving thanks in everything.
I decided to look back and remember all that God had done in our lives and even in the conference over the years.
Truly gratitude is a major key to open heavens. In the spirit of being thankful it allowed me to have clarity and to hear from God. I then asked God how He wanted to fund the conference and He told me through crowdfunding which He confirmed through my cousin, Damola Ladejobi. Interestingly about a week or two before, He had sent my friend Esther Longe to tell me to look at getting people to partner but because I was bent on my own ways I insisted that what I needed was for God to give me a break through in the things I had been working on or hoped for. He was doing something new while I was still waiting for the old.
Over the last weekend my husband and I had the privilege of speaking at the Oasis International conference and Apostle Joshua Selman preached such a mindset changing message that drives home the point I made about God doing something new. The theme of the conference was “Behold I do a new thing” based on Isaiah 43:18-19 which says
“Do not remember the former things,
Nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing, Now it shall spring forth;
Shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness
And rivers in the desert. The beast of the field will honor Me,
I have heard this verse so many times but I hadn’t heard it from this perspective. He highlighted how before we access the new, we must first of all forget the old which involves forgetting the old pains and also forgetting the old victories. This was so profound for me as I had been expecting God to come through in the way He had done in the past but He wanted to do a new thing.
As I meditated further on this verse I noticed verse 16 which says
“Thus says the Lord, who makes a way in the sea
And a path through the mighty waters,”
Essentially in the past God had parted the red seas for the Israelites but this time He was doing something new according to verse 19 which says He was making a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. Essentially the red sea represents abundance i.e. God making a way in abundance but the desert represents dryness and so God is saying this time He is making a way in a dry place. We are currently in a global pandemic and in a recession, in this season He is doing a new thing which is making away even in difficulties.
This is what I experienced. The theme for the 2020 Do It Afraid Conference was “A volcanic Transformation”. God told me to look inward like a volcano at what was lying dormant. He said there had been people impacted by the conference and that I should reach out to them to support the conference. In total we had about 4,500 in attendance at the conferences since 2015. I reluctantly put out a post on social media, my network and sent to our database and in 2 days we raised circa N1.8 million which covered the costs of the conference. God blew my mind.
I was so happy and like the Bellanaija.com headline the conference was a huge success.
After the conference I found myself still feeling ungrateful because I expected that we would get a lot of money as I hoped this was the breakthrough I had been waiting on God for. What we raised was only enough to cover costs, infact it was short of just a small amount. I had personal bills I wanted to sort out and so I was low key angry that God only covered the conference costs. Then God took me through another lesson on gratitude in 1 Kings 18 :41-45
“Then Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink; for there is the sound of abundance of rain.” So Ahab went up to eat and drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; then he bowed down on the ground, and put his face between his knees, and said to his servant, “Go up now, look toward the sea.”
So he went up and looked, and said, “There is nothing.” And seven times he said, “Go again.”
Then it came to pass the seventh time, that he said, “There is a cloud, as small as a man’s hand, rising out of the sea!” So he said, “Go up, say to Ahab, ‘Prepare your chariot, and go down before the rain stops you.’ ”
Now it happened in the meantime that the sky became black with clouds and wind, and there was a heavy rain. So Ahab rode away and went to Jezreel.”
He showed me that Elijah bowed in worship and even though His servant came with a negative report seven times, He still believed and trusted God by worshipping. Worship is an expression of thanksgiving. Then as soon as there was a cloud as small as a man’s hand, He told his servant to go and meet Ahab.
See Elijah said He heard the sound of abundance of rain but after several disappointments, it wasn’t an abundance that came first but a small cloud. He didn’t complain that how come only a small cloud came but He took that small cloud as a sign of the abundance of rain that was coming and He acted out in faith by sending his servant to go and meet Ahab.
The Lord explained to me that the provision for the conference was that cloud and instead of me being thankful I was complaining again and so I decided to repent and go to a place of gratitude. I created a gratitude list and I stopped at 200 things that God had done for me and not that I couldn’t continue but I had to stop because I think I needed to sleep.
Since then I have seen God open up the book of remembrance over me.
Gratitude is a major key. It opens you up to so much.
I would like to encourage everyone on the healing challenge to be thankful to God and be grateful even if you still feel the symptoms or you have only noticed a little change. As you stay in a place of thanksgiving, it is a major key that would unlock your healing.
God blew my mind. I trust that as you decide to be grateful you would see God come in ways you least expect. Remember He is doing a new thing so let’s expect the new and be thankful even as we continue the healign challenge and trust Him for healing.
Tips on gratitude
Dictionary.com defines gratitude as the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness. Let us choose to thank God for all He has done for us.
1. Choose joy
2. Write a list of things that you are grateful for
3. Keep a gratitude journal where every night you write down what you are thankful for the day
4. Keep a gratitude jar where you write on a sheet of paper things you are grateful for each day and put it in the jar everyday
5. Fight to keep your joy
6. Give thanks in ALL circumstances
7. Protect your heart state by being careful of who you follow on social media
8. Decide to always find something to be thankful for
9. Follow Adenike Oyetunde on social media. She is a gratitude coach.
10. Host a gratitude challenge periodically with your friends.
- Thank God for the healing challenge and for leading you to do it.
- Thank God that you have a promise of divine healing in Him
- Thank God for the finished works of Jesus.
- Keep declaring the scriptures and promises of healing you wrote down previously, keep asking for more of the Holy Spirit, continue to cover your self and your situation in the blood of Jesus and do all of these in the name of Jesus.
- Rest in the Lord and praise and worship Him and thank Him for your healing.
- Please join the Hallelujah challenge at 11.59 pm tonight on YouTube or Instagram. Follow Pastor @nathanielblow on Instagram to participate.
- Worship song recommendations : Today I’d liek you to search for songs on YouTube about thanksgiving and listen to them. You can start with one of teh songs we listened to yesterday : I’ll Give Thanks // feat. Kirby Kaple (Official Music Video) and Oh Give thanks by Fred Hammond and RFC