Sunday, June 16, 2019


There is an endless list of individuals in scriptures who served as instruments of change in the lives of others. The frequency of these occurrences is a reminder to us that life is meant to be lived purposefully. This great truth is exemplified by Jesus Himself. His ministry on earth was a clear example to us that the very essence of life is embedded in purpose which includes investing in the lives of a person. When you invest in a life, you have invested in a generation. When Mordecai invested in his cousin Esther, the Jews benefitted as a result. When Barnabas invested in the life of John Mark, we benefit and generations to come will continue to benefit as they read the book of Mark.

My encouragement to you is this, do not relent until you become an instrument of change in the lives of others. As you do, do not forget to examine your instrumentality. The purpose of examining your instrumentality is to reinforce, re-strategize and to remind yourself that you are on earth for a mission. 

Philip and The Ethiopian Eunuch

Acts 8:26-40 (NIV)
Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Go south to the road—the desert road—that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.” So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of the Kandake (which means “queen of the Ethiopians”). This man had gone to Jerusalem to worship, and on his way home was sitting in his chariot reading the Book of Isaiah the prophet. The Spirit told Philip, “Go to that chariot and stay near it.” Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked. “How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?” So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. This is the passage of Scripture the eunuch was reading: “He was led like a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb before its shearer is silent, so he did not open his mouth. In his humiliation he was deprived of justice. Who can speak of his descendants? For his life was taken from the earth.” The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else?” Then Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus. As they traveled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water. What can stand in the way of my being baptized?” And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him.  When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing. Philip, however, appeared at Azotus and traveled about, preaching the gospel in all the towns until he reached Caesarea.
Emphasis Mine

Quite a lengthy portion of scripture and very life transforming. As we read this story, we get to understand that the Spirit of the Lord led Philip close to where the Ethiopian Eunuch was reading scriptures. Philip asked the Ethiopian Eunuch if he understood what he was reading and the Ethiopian Eunuch’s response was this “How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?”(vs 31). There are so many lessons we can learn from this lengthy portion of scripture, however, for the purpose of examining your instrumentality, our focus will be on the question Philip asked the Ethiopian Eunuch. The Bible says in verse 30b “Do you understand what you are reading?” A very instrumental question from an instrument of change. “Do you understand what you are reading?”
This question served as a key that unlocked the doors to understanding scriptures and water baptism for the Ethiopian Eunuch; two very important aspects in our spiritual journey. For the life of the Ethiopian Eunuch, Philip will always be remembered as someone who helped him achieve significant milestones spiritually.

In order for you to help a person or people to experience spiritual milestones, you need to live a lifestyle of obedience to the Spirit of God. It was the Spirit of God in Philip and Philip’s obedience that led him to become an instrument of change in the Ethiopian Eunuch’s life.
Philip’s question and subsequent action towards the Ethiopian eunuch was indicative of many things;
1)     Philip’s question was timely and necessary. One challenge we face in life that causes us to be ineffective is that we sometimes ask the wrong questions and we sometimes answer questions people are not asking.
2)     Philip was interested in the spiritual growth and development of the Ethiopian Eunuch.
He patiently explained scriptures to the Eunuch.
3)     Philip did not undermine what he knew about scriptures and he was conscious of being a blessing to others by sowing spiritual seeds into their lives.

So, my question to you today is this – what is stopping you from becoming the instrument of change? Could it be that you do not know the right question (s) to ask? Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you. Could it be that you are not very interested in the spiritual growth and development of others, besides yours? If that is the case, examine your love walk and receive help from the Spirit of God. Could it be that you undermine what you know and think no one will benefit from it? Whatever your questions are, I will like for you to remember this “a Spirit-Led question could be the instrument that you will use to gain access into the life of a person.” Learn from Philip and become an instrument of change in your generation.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

The Slave Girl & Naaman

I will like you to think of as many instruments as possible. As you reflect on these instruments, think about their uses and how beneficial these instruments have been to you or people you know. The reason I ask you to do so is because I do not want you to lose sight of why you are listening to this series. Even the smallest and insignificant instrument is useful. Subsequently, we will be looking at another example in scripture how the life of an army commander was changed as a result of an advice received from an Israelite slave girl.

2 Kings 5:1-3 (NIV)
 Now Naaman was commander of the army of the king of Aram. He was a great man in the sight of his master and highly regarded, because through him the Lord had given victory to Aram. He was a valiant soldier, but he had leprosy.  Now bands of raiders from Aram had gone out and had taken captive a young girl from Israel, and she served Naaman’s wife.  She said to her mistress, “If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.”

This was a slave girl whom under such circumstances, her opinions will not count. Nevertheless, she had vital information that will transform the life and appearance of her master. She could not get the message to Naaman directly but that did not stop her. That is what happens when your desire to make a difference in a life surpasses your status in society.  She eventually tells Naaman’s wife, thinking, perhaps his wife will tell him. Naaman’s wife told him, thank God, and he was able to meet Prophet Elisha. Naaman received his healing according to the instructions given by Prophet Elisha. What a testimony. Would you agree with me that the Israelite slave girl was very instrumental to that household? It was very shameful to be leprous in Naaman’s days.

I bring up this particular story to emphasize that no one is insignificant when it comes to being an instrument of change. Have you ever wondered whether or not your opinion about a situation counts? I believe the slave girls’ thoughts were not far from yours, nevertheless, she did not hold back the information. Sometimes when you wonder whether or not your opinion counts, I encourage you to go ahead and prayerfully provide the information. Someone will be blessed if not the person you are sharing the information with. As insignificant as the Israelite slave girl was, she became an instrument of change in the life of Naaman the Army Commander. Examine your instrumentality. You are not insignificant. Meaning, you are not too small or unimportant to be worth consideration.

Jesus & The Man At The Pool of Bethesda

John 5:1-10 (NIV)
Sometime later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed.  One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”  “Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked. The day on which this took place was a Sabbath, and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.”

This is a very familiar story; the healing at the pool of Bethesda. Today, I will like us to examine this story in light of examining our instrumentality. Most often, when we hear this story read and explained, it almost suggests that the invalid man at the pool of Bethesda was not enthusiastic enough about his change. And that 38years is quite a long time to not successfully scoot to the edge of the pool and be ready in time to dive in when the angel stirs the water. That can be very true, however, today, I will like for us to look at this story from a different perspective.
Could it be that his physical state of being was the reason why no one came to his rescue? I say so because when Jesus asked him if he wants to get well, his immediate response was that “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.” By implication, getting help from someone was not forbidden, however, no one was available to offer the help.

How busy was the society then that this invalid man could not get any attention or minimal help?
When Jesus asked him “Do you want to get well?” The expected response is “yes” or “no”, however, the invalid man explained his response which was eventually interpreted to Jesus as “yes”. Has anyone ever thought about why the man could not give Jesus a direct answer? When I think about this story, I see a man who is deprived attention from people. A man who wants to be heard. A man who not only wants to be healed but also wants to be heard in the process.

Jesus eventually became the instrument of change in his life and his story changed forever. My question to you is this – how many people do you ignore often who may need very little help from you which will transform their lives? How many people are you avoiding because according to societal standards, they do not fit in? How many people do you take the time to listen to and attend to their needs?

There are many questions I can ask you in line with this story. However, my goal is to encourage you to examine your instrumentality. Sometimes it does not take much to become an instrument of change in a person’s life. Jesus was instrumental in the healing of this man. It all began when Jesus showed interest in him and provided a listening ear. Provide a listening ear to people as the Spirit leads you.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Barnabas & Saul

Acts 9:26-30 (NIV)
When he came to Jerusalem, he tried to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he really was a disciple. But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles. He told them how Saul on his journey had seen the Lord and that the Lord had spoken to him, and how in Damascus he had preached fearlessly in the name of Jesus. So Saul stayed with them and moved about freely in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord.  He talked and debated with the Hellenistic Jews, but they tried to kill him. When the believers learned of this, they took him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus.

Many things to look out for in this portion of scripture. Paul has regained his sight and he immediately starts preaching amongst the Jews. His message was true yet everyone around him questioned his authenticity because of his past life. They even plotted to kill him because they sincerely thought he was not genuine. Here is what I will like you to see when everyone doubted Saul, one person did not. That person was Barnabas. The name Barnabas also means “Son of Encouragement”. As we read earlier in Acts 9:26 (NIV) - When he came to Jerusalem, he tried to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he really was a disciple. But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles.

Our focus today is on Barnabas. How can we examine our instrumentality through the eyes of Barnabas in this day and age? First, we need to ask the Spirit of God within us to help take off any limitations that prevent us from seeing people the right way. Our eyes need to be open in order to see the great potentials in people. Secondly, we need to put aside judgmental attitudes. The disciples were very judgmental of Saul and they could not see past their judgment towards him. Thirdly, be careful not to allow a person’s past determine how you deal with them in the future.

Barnabas became very instrumental in the life of Saul who was later re-named, Paul. They ministered the gospel on many occasions together. Saul was greatly encouraged by Barnabas. Today, most Christians talk about Paul, how great he was and how he is still influencing our lives through his epistles. Very few remember the instrument of change called Barnabas. Choose to become a Barnabas (A son or daughter of Encouragement) in your generation.  

Ananias & Saul

Let’s continue to examine our instrumentality through the eyes of Ananias. He was very instrumental in the life of Saul. The Saul we are referring to in this context was the person who was later called Paul after his life-changing encounter with Jesus.
Our focus today will be on a few verses in the book of Acts 9 however, I will like to present to you a brief background on the life of Saul. Saul was a Roman citizen and a student of Gamaliel. In our day, we will say Saul went to Yale or Harvard and he was taught by the best teachers. Saul was an intellectual and was very zealous for his course. He passionately persecuted the church and consented to the killing of Stephen. Saul later had an encounter with Jesus and lost his eyesight. After this event, Saul was led to the house of Judas, by the men who traveled with him. These details will come in handy soon. Amen.

Acts 9:10-18 (NIV)
In Damascus, there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, “Ananias!”
“Yes, Lord,” he answered. The Lord told him, “Go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying.  In a vision, he has seen a man named Ananias come and place his hands on him to restore his sight.”  “Lord,” Ananias answered, “I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your holy people in Jerusalem. And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name.” But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument to proclaim my name to the Gentiles and their kings and to the people of Israel. I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.” Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, and after taking some food, he regained his strength.

Our goal is to present to you from scripture, many ways through which you can become an instrument of change. Ananias is faced with this great challenge because of an instruction he received from the Lord as we can see from the scriptures we just read. Will he obey God and help Saul regain his sight or will he not. Thank God Ananias obeyed and Saul received his sight.
Back to you.
- Who is that person you are afraid to help regain their vision because everything you know about them seems to be dangerous? Saul persecuted the church and consented to the killing of Stephen.
- Who is that person you are afraid to help regain their vision because you esteem them higher than you in one way or the other? Paul was an intellectual. He studied in the best school and had the best teacher, Gamaliel.
- Who is that person whose clarity of vision depends on you and because of fear, you held back help from them? Saul’s vision was dependent on Ananias’ obedience. Thank God Ananias obeyed.
These are very serious questions to think about. Ananias was very instrumental to Saul regaining his eyesight/vision. Choose to be an Ananias in your generation. Do not allow fear rob you of the benefits of becoming an instrument of change in your generation. Saul was later called Paul and he authored most of the books in the New Testament.

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Andrew and Simon Peter

Andrew was the brother to Simon Peter and Andrew served as an instrument of change in the live of his brother Simon Peter. As we look at their story and receive the blessings and the lessons it has to offer, I will like for you to remember that your instrumentality in the life of another is not always as a result of your direct activity with that person. Meaning, you may not necessarily be the one to bring about change in them, however, you can serve as a tool that leads them to where they can receive change.

John 1:40-42 (NIV)
Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of the two who heard what John had said and who had followed Jesus. The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and tell him, “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ). And he brought him to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You will be called Cephas” (which, when translated, is Peter).
Summarily, Andrew found Jesus and embraced him and the very first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon. Andrew brought Simon to Jesus. Immediately, Simon received a name change from Jesus Christ. Initially, he was called Simon, when he encountered Jesus because of Andrew, his name changed to Peter. This may not seem very significant to you until I mention to you that this Peter is the same Peter mentioned in the book of Acts who preached and about 3000people received salvation. This Peter is the one who authored the book of 1st and 2nd Peter as we find in the bible. All these subsequently happened, however, the journey began with a simple introduction to Jesus.
It is noteworthy that many have used scriptures such as Mark 6:4 (ESV) which states that And Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his hometown and among his relatives and in his own household.” As a prerequisite not to reach out to those closest to them. When you read this scripture in context, you will see that before this statement was made, Jesus made an attempt to reach out in His hometown. So, just before you conclude or give up on your hometown, your household, and your relatives, make an attempt to tell them about Jesus.

Remember, we are examining our instrumentality. I thought one way to start is to begin examining the eternal difference (s) we are making in the lives of others. Who has come to a better understanding of the “Word” (Jesus) because of you? Who has accepted Jesus as Savior and Lord because of you? Who has received a name change because of you?
You may say, it was not in my power to do all these. I can agree with you, however, what are you doing to invest in yourself in order to become that instrument of change? Please do not take the questions lightly. Think through them and become an “Andrew” in your generation.


There is an endless list of individuals in scriptures who served as instruments of change in the lives of others. The frequency of th...