Category: Relationships

When Seeking True Friendship

There are “friends” who destroy each other, but a real friend sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24(NLT)

True friends don’t come easy. They are rare and are specially bred. They are made with tough skin to accomodate your mistakes and are loyal at heart to withstand storms in your life come what may. They stick with you as you grow in life and they stand by you as you go through life. True friends are sometimes closer to you like your family member. They urge you on, help you up, overlook your errors and they keep you going in life.

True friendship is that with which Jonathan displayed towards David. It was not a friendship established on a surface level. It was a deeper level kind of friendship based on companionship, honesty, transparency, patience, mutual respect and loyalty. Their friendship was not a friendship based on the number of activities they did together or the number of favours they rendered to each other. It was beyond what they could get from each other. It was based on a special bond of loyalty and mutual respect for each other.

True friends are there on this same Christian journey with you travelling with you seeking the Lord by your side, upholding your faith together, walking in purpose as you fulfil destiny together. To have a true friend, you ought to have been one to somebody else. To have a true friend, you ought to look within and ask yourself a question, have I been a true friend to someone else lately?

A friend of mine has such a true friend. They often joke together that they were meant to be twins from the womb but something happened and one of them missed the train causing their split up to different families. Thankfully they’ve found each other on earth and they are inseparable.

True friends are made for your upliftment and not your downfall. They are meant to help mend your heart and not break your heart. They are meant to wipe away tears from your eyes and not to cause you any grief. They are there to support, encourage and honor you not to discourage or dishonour you at anytime in your life.

True friends will hold your hands in sickness and in health, in poverty and when you have plenty. They are there correcting you in love and standing by you to see you grow as you become more like Christ. You are made to be a true friend to somebody and somebody is made to be your true friend. Can you honestly say that you have fulfilled that role recently?

True friendship is that which Ruth displayed to her Mother in law, Naomi. Ruth would not leave Naomi in her darkest time in spite of her personal troubles. She was a young widow who chose to comfort an older widow. She chose to weep with Naomi, to go on a long journey with her, endured with her, was patient with her and eventually rejoiced with her. Ruth did not abandon Naomi for the age gap or the societal class between them instead she was persistent, consistent, loyal, respectful, transparent and humble.

Such true friendship between Jonathan and David, Ruth and Naomi, Elijah and Elish may be hard to come by these days, there is one thing that is certain, The Lord’s original intent is for true and genuine relationship amongst his creation. Such friendship should be geared towards one purpose in mind, to glorify God in all we do, to commune with God in spirit and in truth and to love one another with the love of Christ.

The Lord’s intention is that we keep not only good relationships but also godly relationships. The Lord created human beings to influence each other positively not negatively, For us to grow together in Christ-likeness and not childlikeness. To build good memories with one another, to share pleasant experiences with each other and not for the horrible things we sometimes do to each other.

Should you be seeking for that true and godly friendships, make the following declarations and pray them into your life through the word of God and see what the Lord will do for you.

Make a Declaration of faith with me today for true friendship

I seek first the kingdom of God and its righteous, hence true and godly friends are added unto me. I seek to walk with the godly, the righteous and honourable friends are added unto me. We walk together in righteousness, in peace and we are joyful in the Holy Spirit (Matthew 6:33)
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The Lord sets his love upon me and I am blessed, happy and fortunate with loyal friends. I am blessed, happy and fortunate with true and godly friends. I am blessed, happy and fortunate with God-fearing, Christ like friends. We delight ourselves in the law of the Lord day and night, and in return, the Lord prospers our ways (Psalm 1)
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I acknowledge the Lord in all my ways and He lines up godly companions for me. He will fulfil His purpose for me and perfects all that concerns me. He orders my steps and he directs my path in the way of righteousness. He makes my ways prosperous and he favours me with true friends for as long as I am committed to doing his will.(Proverbs 3:6)
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Today I disassociate myself from foolish talks. I stop walking in the ways of the foolish. I am no longer a companion to the company of fools. I stay away from the angry men, backbiters and the gossip for God does not delight in them. Instead, I stay with the wise and I am wise. I seek and search for true, godly friends and the Lord orders my steps. Henceforth I attract friends who have the fear of God, who loves the Lord and obeys him in all he commands me today so that I can also grow in the love of God and in the fearof the holy one(Proverbs 13:20).
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I love the Lord with all my heart, my mind and my soul. I love his children also as the Lord commanded me. I extend myself to the Lord’s children around me. Henceforth, I will deal with the Lord’s children with patience, in kindness and in gentleness for as long as the Lord gives me grace. I will show the love of Christ to the loveless and be a companion to the lonely (Mark 12:30-31)
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I speak peace to my friends and they receive peace in their heart. I declare that they are truthful in their friendships/relationships, they are loyal and they find honour before the Lord. May we honour and reverence God together in our lives speaking peace to one another and reaping our rewards in righteousness (James 3:18)
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I declare that I am a good friend, I am godly and I am loyal to my friends. And so are my friends also to me
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Accepting God’s Love

Believe it or not, God loves you no matter what you may think! He loves you no matter what anybody may have said to you or done to you. God loves you no matter what trauma you may have gone through. No matter what your actions may be against love. God loves you! He loves you unconditionally in spite of your condition.  He loves you objectively in spite of your objections. He loves you irrespective of your lack of respect for him. He loves you in spite of that situation or circumstances. He has not forgotten about you and he will never forsake you.  

You may struggle to accept his love as a result of your experiences yet he will not reject you. This father’s love is unconditional and irreplaceable. Your heavenly father loves and cares for you deeply no matter what. His love is incomparable to any other human love on earth. God’s love gives you confidence and it boosts your ego. It helps you come into your own person and accelerates your growth in life. It doesn’t matter if you have never had a taste of that fatherly love’s experience, it doesn’t matter if the absence of a father has left a vacuum in your life. God’s love can and will fill you up to the overflowing.  

Father’s day for you may have been more of a remembrance day like it was for me until a few years ago than it was a day to celebrate my earthly father. His loss and his absence may have lost a vacuum in my heart for many years, thankfully God stepped in and filled the hole in my heart wuth his love. Today I celebrate the many father figures that have come my way. I celebrate on Father’s day many father figures in my life who have been there for me and who have stepped in at any time I needed the father’s guide and love. 

Father’s day for you may have been a day you were reminded of the abuse you suffered instead of the protection you needed. It may have been a day you remembered the rejection or the disapproval you suffered from your father instead of an acceptancehe  and approval you longed for. For you, father’s day may have been a reminder of your disappointments with your biological father. He may have disappeared when you needed him the most. He may have abused you, used you and dumped you. He may have cursed you instead of releasing a blessing over you. He may have disappeared into thin air when he was supposed to stand by you and stay with you. And this may make father’s day a difficult day for you.

The good news is, God’s love never disappoints. His love is like a rock, never moving, never shaken, always present. Always on stand by to comfort you and shower you with his love. His love is the ultimate. Where you have not known your biological father or you do not know him enough to experience his love, God knows you and his love for you never fails. He will do so much more for you than an earthly father could ever do for you. Nothing can stop God from loving you. He loves you beyond measure and nothing can separate you from his love.

The Bible says; “Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?” (Romans 8:35S).

Where you may have lost your father to death or any other unforeseen circumstances, God is readily available to be the father you lost. He is the father of the fatherless and the husband of the widow. He comes riding with comfort in his wings and bearing provisions in his back. He is ever loving and ever faithful. He will never disappear on you and you can never lose him. Though an earthly father is a representative of a heavenly father on earth, But in a case where you have not seen God’s love through your biological father and you struggle to accept God’s love due to your experiences, God’s love can permeate through your heart on this Father’s Day if you will give him a chance. You too can enjoy God’s unending love when you choose to accept his love. And where you may be struggling to see or accept God’s love, the following Bible Declarations of faith would help open up your heart to receiving God’s love.

Make a Declaration of Faith

Today I accept the unconditional, unending love of God into my heart. I may have gone through situations amd circumstances that have shaken my faith in the live of God, today I accept my fate in God and I declare that I am loved by God unconditionally. God loves me no matter what! Though, once a sinner and I went astray, now I am back and I am wrapped up in the love of God through Christ who died for my sins so that I can experience God’s great love. (Romans 5:8)

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My God is rich and merciful and he loves me greatly. Through God’s love I come alive together with Christ who saved me by his grace (Ephesians 2:4-5)

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I declare that I am enveloped with God’s love through his son Jesus Christ. Today I accept the love of God with all of my heart and I exchange the missing piece of my heart for the wholeness in God so that I might live through his son Christ Jesus whom he sent to be the propitiation for my sins (1 John 4:9-11)

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I declare that God is mighty to save and he saves me from loss and rejection. I declare that God rejoices over me with gladness and quietens me with his love. He is exulted over me with loud singing (Zephaniah 3:17)

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I am a product of God’s love filled with God’s love for the world. I am a child of God born with love, to show forth his love for the world (1 John 3:1)

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I believe that God loves me so much he gave up his only son just for me in whom I believe that I shall not perish with this world but I have now inherited an everlasting life. (John 3:16)

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I am the apple of God’s eyes and he jealously guards me (Deuteronomy 32:10).

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God is my father. He is my creator, my potter. I am the clay in his hands, the work of his hands carefully moulded for his purpose. He has great pride in me. I am his finished product ( Isaiah 64:8)

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My father knows what I need before I ask him (Matthew 6:8). He sees what is done in the secret and he rewards me for my labour of love (Matthew 6:4)

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I am loved. I am valuable in God’s eyes. Much more valuable than the birds of the air who do not sow or reap or store in barns yet my father feeds them (Matthew 6:26)

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I ask my father for good gifts and he gives them to me (Matthew 7:11)

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Praise be to the God and father of my Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed me in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. I am chosen, predestined in love and adopted to be a child of God. I am loved (Ephesians 1:3-5)

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7 Bible Prayers of Forgiveness and Repentance from When Christians Hurt Each Other

Christians sometimes struggle with forgiveness and repentance. When we get hurt, we want immediate justice and vengeance. And when we hurt other people’s feelings, we find it hard to swallow our pride, reflect upon our actions, accept our faults, repent from our sins and make amends where necessary.

Instead of fighting for peace, we pursue deceit and end up being defeated. Instead of letting go and letting God fight the battle, we allow the flesh to rule and lead us into taking matters into our own hands and taking vengeance whenever we can.

This fight against flesh is the first fight we must conquer in order to become Christ-like. Christ who was led to the slaughter yet he did not open his mouth to condemn anybody though he had the power to stop his tormentors not once did he lift a finger neither did he speak a word to curse instead he prayed for them saying, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do” (Isaiah 53:7, Luke 23:34).

You may not have done it on purpose, but for some reasons beyond your imagination, you may have found out that you hurt other people’s feelings and you will like to reconcile this before God. Perhaps the Holy Spirit has convicted you of hurting other people’s feelings and you wonder how to go about it. The following Bible Prayer will help you to pray for God’s forgiveness and cause you to repent from hurting others henceforth.

Prayer out loud Bible Prayer of forgiveness and Repentance

1.

Dear God, I know nothing is hidden before you and you know all things. You search deeper within the way things appear and you watch my heart and my intentions at all times. (Luke 8:17)

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2.
I come humbly before you today asking that you forgive me for when I have not obeyed your commandment, to love others as you have loved me.
(John 15:12)
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3.
Forgive me for the times when I have despised wisdom and instruction and I have not done unto others as I would like for them to do to me.
(Proverbs 1:7), (Luke 6:31)
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4.
Forgive me for the times I have not been sensitive enough to the sufferings of my brothers and sisters in Christ but rather I have focused solely on my own sufferings.
(1 Peter 5:9)
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5.
Forgive me for the times I have not loved my enemies and pray for those who persecuted me.
(Matthew 5:44)
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6.
Forgive me for holding onto the hurts I have suffered from others and using it against my brothers and sisters in Christ.
(Matthew 6:14-15)
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7.
Help me to forgive others just as you have forgiven me so that we can all be healed through your healing balm in Jesus name I pray. Amen
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I Reflect: What Is The State of Your Mind?

Time they say heal wounds but Christ is the true healer. One day I was praying for healing in my body and the Holy Spirit directed me to pray with a particular scripture; “He bared my grief, he carried my sorrow” Isaiah 53:4.

To have a deeper understanding of what I was praying, I quickly checked the dictionary meaning of grief. Grief means a lot of things but some of its meaning that stood out for me are; sorrow, misery, sadness, anguish, pain, distress, agony, torment, affliction, suffering, heartache, heartbreak, broken-heartedness, heaviness of heart, woe, desolation, despondency, dejection, despair, angst, mortification; mourning, mournfulness, bereavement, lamentation, lament; remorse, regret.

I realized the prompt from the Holy Spirit so I prayed. The more I prayed, the more freedom and healing I received in my body. Though I wanted healing for my body, the root cause of my pain was deeply embedded in my mind and God was reaching out to me for total healing. Christ already carried my sorrow and bare my grief. I no longer needed to carry the heavy burden, the grief, pains of the past, painful regrets and the occasional sorrow in my heart. For my healing to be complete inside out, I had to release my pains to Christ and let go of painful regrets.

Many years after my heartbreak, I would often travel back in time and remembered the heartache. I would often wished that I had not made that mistake in my life. But little did I know that each time I remembered the grief I carried, it registered in my memory and it released unpleasant toxins in my body making me ill. It turned out that though I had forgiven this person and moved on in life, I still carried the pain, the grief and the heartache of the past in my my heart.

The more I prayed, God opened my eyes to see what Jesus had done for me on the cross instead of what I had suffered in the hands of his creation. Though I was praying for healing in my body, God wanted to heal me inside-out. Christ wanted me to reach out for complete healing and total restoration.

Most people have done something that caused them painful regrets. Some people have suffered some form of disgrace or shame that caused them to lose faith in themselves and in people? Some people have haunted memories of the past which may be blocking their healing. Some people still suffer from such condemnation that they just cannot bear to look at themselves in the mirror. Some people have allowed errors of their way to chase them into oblivion where they should have been shinning lights. The Bible says that you no longer need to hang on to those painful memories.

Jesus said, come unto me all you are weary and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. You can receive your rest from past mistakes, you can receive a total freedom from painful memories. You can receive a complete healing from griefs and sorrows of the heart. All you need to do is to release all to Jesus and accept that which he already did for you. When regrets, shame and disgrace are not dealt with properly, it leads to terrible decision making which can jeopardize the future.

Judas Iscariot suffered such painful regret after his betrayal to Jesus. He was the treasurer of the group (John 12:6). Though he dined and wined with Jesus, the state of his heart was greediness. (Matthew 26:23-25).  He knew more about Jesus than the outsiders. He even knew so much about Jesus that he was willing to point him out to the chief priests (Mathew 26:14-15, 47-49). The state of his mind pushed him to commit such an atrocity that pushed him to betray an innocent blood (Mathew 27:3-5). When he realized the error of his way, he tried to rectify it. He was gripped with so much remorse that he returned the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and the elders, saying; ‘I have sinned by betraying innocent blood’. After the deed was done, he went on and hung himself. The state of his heart with its painful regret sent him to an early grave.

“The state of your mind always prepares you for life’s trials”. Agu Irukwu. The state of Judas Iscariot’s mind did not prepare him for the aftermath effect of his action, rather it destroyed him. You can prepare your mind to develop you and make you stronger for life’s many trials. When God reached out to the state of mind, I had to let go in order to receive my healing. I realized that Jesus had a really good experience of being rejected for my sake, I no longer need to go through painful memories.

You are in Christ now, there is no longer any condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). You do not have to make any decision you might later regret due to a heartache. You do not have to wallow in those terrible or horrible memories either. You do not have to drown yourself in self pity. You can bounce back from your past by keeping a check on the state of your mind and by giving up those issues to Jesus.

Why not forgive that person? Most importantly forgive yourself?  You need to search within, let go and let God.

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Christian Singles: You Too Can Be Married

Some people ask, why did I get married? Many, however, asks God, why am I not married? For as many Christian singles who wish to be married, for those who have been given the grace and the gift of marriage by God, you shall be married. When you embrace godly principles, your days of aloneness are numbered. Do not despair Christian singles looking to get married, being single is just a phase that will soon become a story to tell.

This is not a cliché but you cannot be alone forever. God said in his word that none shall lack his or her mate (Isaiah 34:16). You cannot lack your mate because God said so. God is your provider (Genesis 22:13-14, Mathew 6:26, Philippians 4:19), you will not lack anything good (Deuteronomy 2:7). He is your shepherd you shall not want (Psalm 23:1). He is the way maker (Isaiah 43:16), He will make a way where there seems to be no way for you.

You ought to believe him. Remind him of his promises and see him move on your behalf. These are some of God’s words that give  the assurance and hope to his children looking to get married and to stay married. This is by no means an exhaustive list but a fundamental principle to embrace when looking to get married.

1) Accept you are created in his image, after his likeness. Children always take after their parents, they inherit their DNA from their parents. By faith, you are a child of God, therefore, your DNA is in Christ Jesus (Acts 17:28) whom the father sent to shed his blood in exchange for your salvation. Father chose to create you in his image, after his likeness. He did not create you in the image of an Elephant or any other animals created, nor in the image of elements of this world but in his image and after his likeness created he you (Genesis 1:26).

Since God is your father in heaven. He created and wired you to be just like him. This means you are created to be creative as he is, to create and recreate, and to have everything just as he has. You should conform wholly to the image of his dear son Jesus Christ in order to fully function just like him (Romans 8:29).

Are you fully conformed to the image of Christ yet?

You were created by God in his image. You have been chosen to represent God on earth as a human being. This means you fall under the lineage of Adam who sinned against God and he was sent out of paradise into a world of hardship. Through Adam sin entered the world making all men fall short of the glory of God (Romans 5:12). This means you are a sinner and God cannot behold sin. You have inherited sin from Adam and you must return to God. Did You say how?

Related article: How to Return to God After Sinning

 

2) Embrace that you are created to have a companion. Have you noticed that everything God does he does with his companions, Jesus Christ and The Holy Spirit? He is a Godhead three in one, Father, Spirit and Son ( 1 John 5:7). He is a God of relationship. He operates with his companions. Since you have been made in his image and after his likeness, then you should to function like him. This means that He (the triune God) as your Father is the first in any relationship you have or may have. Then you and your kind (everything and everyone are created after their kind). Your kind is a human being, not an animal. A dog or a cat or any other animal cannot replace your kind. You may have any animal as a pet or to work with but they cannot replace the human touch.

When God put Adam in charge of all the animals and the vegetation in the garden of Eden, God knew that these creations could not sustain him (Genesis 2:15-22). Adam needed a companion suitable for him. Your kind is a suitable helper for you not your dog nor your animals. Your kind is your companion just as Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are God’s kind. Because God has a kind and you have a kind, and you are made in his image to function like him then ladies as women, you are suitable helpers for the companion God has for you. And if you are a man, you have a kind too, you have also been created in the image of God to function in him and you shall have a suitable helper for you.

Your father in heaven has designed and wired you to function like him. You take after your father in heaven and you will have the right companion just as he has. Do you agree?

Singles Christian singles shall be married

3) Know that you are created for a purpose, as a suitable helper or as a companion. Everybody has been created in twos – male and female he created them(Genesis 1:27). The man to be as a companion and the woman to be as a suitable helper. Adam had companions in the garden of Eden but those companions were not suitable for him. God said “it is not good for man to be alone. I will make a suitable helper for him”. No man is an Island. No man is meant to spend his days on earth alone.  Ladies, you are a helper suitable for that man God has for you. Men you need companions, talk to God about making you a suitable one. God is the maker and he is the way maker. When he created Eve he brought her to Adam. Adam exclaimed! This is the bone of my bones and the flesh of my flesh, she shall be called woman (Genesis 2:23)

4) Trust that you will meet the bone of your bones and the flesh of your flesh. God created his children for relationships.  God is the maker and He is also the way maker. When he created Eve he brought her to Adam. Adam exclaimed! This is the bone of my bones and the flesh of my flesh, she shall be called a woman (Genesis 4). Ladies, when God is done refining you for that special someone, he will personally take you to meet him, do not panic. God does not do his work by halves, he complete that which he has started with you. Trust in him that he will cause everything to work together for your good (Romans 8:28).

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Why Does God Hate Divorce? – A Fresh Perspective

God’s spirit grieves over divorce. Have you ever seen two best friends or loved up couples together? Did you notice how they talk about each other, finish each others sentences, loves each other deeply, gaze into each others eyes so much that they would want to enter into each others body. Don’t you just love it when they do these things together and with each other? Do you not wish to be a part of that loving relationship? This is exactly what God wants to see when two people come together. When two people come together in true love, they uphold the image of God. For God is love and God created human beings in his image, after his likeness.

Image of God

God hates divorce because of the image of God in human beings. The image of God honors, respects, prefers one another. Not one person is above the image of God. Nobody is too aged, too old, too short or too tall, too dark or too light, too thin or too fat. Everybody is made in this image of God.

The image of God is that of unity, not disunity. The image of God is that of love, not of dislike or hatred. The image of God is that which says I’m all in, not that which says, I am one leg in and one leg out. The image of God is that which is selfless, not selfish. It covers a multitude of sin, it does not recount how many times you have offended me or how many times you keep hurting me. The image of God is not rude nor disrespectful. Far from it.

God is triune in his image. He is God the father, God the son and the Holy Spirit. He is one God yet he is not alone. When he created the heavens and the earth, he did it with his companions. When he created human beings, he consulted with his companions, he said; “Let ‘US’ make man in our own image”(Genesis 1:26).

God and his companions are inseparable. They are one and they do everything together(John 5:20). They are in tune with one another. They are fused together, nothing can separate them. None of them disagrees with one another. Everything they do together is good(Genesis 1:31). The father is in the son and the son is in the father (John 14:10-11, 1 John 2:23) and they have the Holy Spirit with them. They have such a beautiful relationship together and this is exactly what he wants for his created beings. This image of God is perfect and he want his children to embrace his image.

Coming soon: What Exactly Is The Image of God?

Save Face

In China, they uphold the tradition to save face. It does not matter who you are and what you do, you must save face. You must respect the other person’s feelings. Children of God must learn to save face as they do in China. To God family is first. No matter who you are or what you do, you carry the image of God on you and you must learn to save face simply for the image you carry.

When two people refuse to uphold the image of God in their relationship, they break God’s heart. Christian divorce
Why does God hate divorce

God loves you so much. God is hopeful for you and your spouse. God wants your marriage to succeed. Would you consider his image in your relationship today?

More reasons why God hates divorce coming soon.

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Early Morning Prayer: Declare and Pray through the Bible in a year with others on Skype.
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