05 Dec

Do the Needful

Do the needful is an Indian-English phrase which means as it suggests, do that which needs to be done to get the result that is required.

I heard the phrase recently on a TV show and it stuck in my head. This week, I haven’t been doing much TV watching but I’ve been thinking about reaching my goals. I know what my goals are, I have the ingredients needed to start, yet I find myself moored at the harbour, refusing to set sail. I’ve been docked for weeks now, staring at the goal I know I can achieve.

When Solomon prayed for wisdom, God gave him wealth and long life as well. God liked that he did not ask for what most kings would have. Often when we pray, we pray for what we think is the needful. Truth is, the flesh wants what it sees. The soul wants what it feels and the spirit wants what it needs.

If Solomon had prayed for wealth- what he could see and touch- he would probably have got just that. If he prayed for safety from his enemies- what his soul feared- he would have had years of reigning in peace. Instead, his spirit which was one with God knew what the needful was. He needed wisdom. He ignored the yearning of the flesh and the longing of the soul and delved deep into his spirit to pray for the needful. How often have we prayed for the obvious or made emotional pleas? What we need isn’t always determined by what we can see or feel.

A few years ago I was in a situation I didn’t know how to get out of. I remember being so anxious and downright fed up. One morning I lay on the carpet and cried out to God. Not the ‘God help me,’ prayer, but the ‘God, why me?’ prayer. At the time I was an interiors writer for a newly-launched platform and my monthly article was overdue. God told me to go write the article, which I thought was ridiculous under the circumstances. “But God,” I asked him, “have you ignored the fact that I’m a creative being, and I need peace of mind and mental space to come up with decent content?” But I felt pulled to my laptop and went ahead to write. I needed to learn to function in the midst of chaos. When hell breaks loose around you, you don’t have to fall apart.

I wrote a beautiful article which surprised even me. Fast forward a few weeks and I received an email from a couple who wanted my design services for a major commission. They had been to other better established interior designers who had submitted proposals, yet they offered me the job without a proposal, without even a consultation all because they read my article and were convinced I could deliver what they wanted, and I did.

Why must we listen to our spirit?

1) There is no confidence in the flesh

2) Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Do not be afraid or discouraged (don’t allow your emotions to lead or overwhelm you)

3) In our spirit is power, love and soundness of mind.

Let us learn to do that which we truly need, trusting fully in the leading of the Holy Spirit regardless of the noise going on around us.

This week I have been doing the needful by using these tips:

1) Get your praise on throughout the day. This ensures that God remains the highest authority in your life.

2). Ask yourself regularly, why am I doing this? Am I trying to alleviate a discomfort in my soul or satisfy the craving of my flesh?

3) Cut down the noise. The amount of information we read, the conversations we have and the physical clutter that surrounds us stimulates the body and the soul and drowns out the voice of your spirit which is one with God.

I pray for strength for you to do that which is needed as you say no to passing

Distractions this week. ❤️

Don’t rush off, share your thoughts!

Please follow and like us:
02 Mar

Barren, Hard Ground?

hoehands

Ps 65:9 You take care of the earth and water it,
making it rich and fertile.
The river of God has plenty of water;
it provides a bountiful harvest of grain,
for you have ordered it so. 10 You drench the plowed ground with rain,
melting the clods and levelling the ridges.
You soften the earth with showers
and bless its abundant crops. 11 You crown the year with a bountiful harvest;
even the hard pathways overflow with abundance. 12 The grasslands of the wilderness become a lush pasture,
and the hillsides blossom with joy. 13 The meadows are clothed with flocks of sheep,
and the valleys are carpeted with grain.
They all shout and sing for joy!

I can hear the crunch-crunch of our farming implements breaking up the harmattan-inflicted ground during general work.

I attended boarding school in the north of Nigeria where the cold harmattan seasons did justice to the ground and to our skin. Cracked lips and cracked heels were the main features that distinguished us from those who went to our sister schools in the south.

The hard ground was parched and rock-like. Nothing grew on those spots. That is until the wild imagination of some ‘clever’ house prefect decided it was a perfect spot for a flower-bed and we were called in to start breaking up the ground with our hoes. It was hard work. We’d start by softening the hard earth with some water. Sometimes there was a lot of gravel just beneath the soil and I can recall the clanging noise that rudely informed us as our implements connected with rock. You also had to look out for scorpions and bugs that stung. Through perseverance and sweat the mound would begin to form. Slowly, sometimes over 10 hours, at other times over 4 days of hard work but it became softer and softer. Flowers were planted and artificial rain was summoned in with our buckets. Tending that flower-bed then became someone else’s regular job or morning piece of work. Each time we passed by that bed we looked at it with pride, after all it was our masterpiece, we transformed barren, dry ground into a habitat for beautiful flowers.

Psalm 65 is all about reaping a harvest after a lot of work. The interesting thing is God is the one who does the work, but you are the earth on which he works. Very often however it feels like we’re the ones doing the work and get frustrated when nothing comes out of it. He is the one who provides the seed as well as an abundance of rain. It should not surprise us therefore when challenges show up like gravel while working our hands to the bone. We are looking for a bountiful harvest but all we seem to have is gravel, bugs and more dry soil. God keeps digging, breaking up our bad habits, misconceptions, prejudices, doubts and fears. There is no point throwing seed on hard ground and hoping there’ll be a harvest. The birds of the air will simply swoop down to eat those seeds, so He doesn’t bless you- yet with that financial windfall you’ve been praying for since it will disappear overnight. The time has to be right. Deut 28:12- The Lord will send rain at the proper time from His rich treasury in the heavens.

At the start or perhaps even half-way through it may not seem like anything will grow on that land, even though you can see nearby flower beds looking soft, rich and fruitful, remember that God is still doing the work of preparing the soil. After that hard part is done He’ll provide the seed and the rain, He’ll make your ground fertile and even the hard pathways will enjoy abundance. One piece of advice, don’t look at others’ completed work. Comparing yourself to others results in more frustration and certain discouragement.

I pray for an abundance of grace in your life as the master farmer does His work in you excellently to make your life an abundant harvest, amen!
Do tell me your thoughts and share if you’ve been blessed!

Glossary:
harmattan
noun
(on the west coast of Africa) a dry, parching land breeze, charged with dust.

hoe
noun
1. a long-handled implement having a thin, flat blade usually set transversely, used to break up the surface of the ground, destroy weeds, etc.
2. any of various implements of similar form, as for mixing plaster or mortar.
verb (used with object)
3. to dig, scrape, weed, cultivate, etc., with a hoe.
verb (used without object)
4. to use a hoe

Please follow and like us: