Sunday, November 12, 2017

MEN - Prayer For You

Prayer For You
Our loving Father, we thank you for teaching us how to live exceptional lifestyles through your word,
-We have learned the importance of devotion and observance of your word.
-We have understood the importance of replicating ourselves through acquiring a sound knowledge of you and teaching others likewise
-We now understand better the place of diligence in our walk with you
-Through obedience to your word, Father, we will influence many for your glory
-We thank you for the Holy Spirit who is or helper
-Father, we commit to studying your word so that we might grow and abound in Christ-like qualities.

Your Son Jesus Christ taught us the importance and significance of fasting by making fasting priority even before His ministry here on earth, therefore, Lord as a way of emulating Him and growing in our walk with you, we will fast, pray and study your word often for your glory.

Thank you for enlarging our capacity for growth, In Jesus Name We Pray Amen.

MEN - Standout

Are you a leader of leaders? A leader of leaders is a wise and confident person who guides the people he leads and who encourages the people around him to build up themselves for leadership roles. He is also one who takes full ownership of his responsibilities. Leadership void of the fear of the Lord is of no value.

As a way of standing out, Ezra appointed other leaders as authorized by the king and when the situation arose. King Artaxerxes trusted Ezra to appoint magistrates and judges to administer justice to the people in the Trans-Euphrates- all who knew the Law of the Lord. And for those who did not know, the King authorized Ezra to teach them. Ezra 7:25.

When Ezra saw the need to appoint leaders, he did. An example is seen in Ezra 8:15-16. He separated himself unto God by being faithful to his assigned duties (not getting involved in detestable practices) as a leader even when others did not.

Ezra 9:1 (NIV)
After these things had been done, the leaders came to me and said, “The people of Israel, including the priests and the Levites, have not kept themselves separate from the neighboring peoples with their detestable practices, like those of the Canaanites, Hittites, Perizzites, Jebusites, Ammonites, Moabites, Egyptians and Amorites.
Emphasis Mine

Ezra chose to separate himself unto to the Lord and as a result, he was the “go to leader” in his own community (environment). He did not give room to any form of compromise. 
At the slightest observance/notification of sin, Ezra was confident enough to address it, not hesitant.
The leaders and officials he was leading obviously needed guidance in the path of faithfulness. The Word of God in you is your guarantee to be outstanding as a male.
In order to be outstanding, you need to address arising situations head-on and not shy away from them?

Ezra 9:2 (NIV)
  They have taken some of their daughters as wives for themselves and their sons, and have mingled the holy race with the peoples around them. And the leaders and officials have led the way in this unfaithfulness.”
Emphasis Mine

Ezra intervened when trouble arose. He did not give room to any blame games, accusations, rather, he was solution oriented.

Ezra 1:3 (NIV)
When I heard this, I tore my tunic and cloak, pulled hair from my head and beard and sat down appalled. 
Emphasis Mine

Ezra 1:4b (NIV)
And I sat there appalled until the evening sacrifice.
Emphasis Mine

Do you shy away from the issues that arise around you or do you boldly confront or intervene by providing possible solutions?
Are you a male by God’s design? Choose to standout on purpose. Distinguish yourself. Separate yourself unto the Lord, embrace your duties and responsibilities fully.
The goal of effective leadership is to train others to lead. Most often, you teach others how to be outstanding in leadership by being a physical example. For this to be fulfilled, you must purpose in your heart to be outstanding, not mediocre. Amen!

MEN - Fast

As we continue to look at Ezra’s life, many aspects continue to unfold and give us a clear understanding of the kind of man that he was.

Ezra 8:21-23 (NIV)

There, by the Ahava Canal, I proclaimed a fast, so that we might humble ourselves before our God and ask him for a safe journey for us and our children, with all our possessions.
I was ashamed to ask the king for soldiers and horsemen to protect us from enemies on the road, because we had told the king, "The gracious hand of our God is on everyone who looks to him, but his great anger is against all who forsake him." So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.
Emphasis Mine

Ezra was a leader with authority, positive influence and direction. They were about to go on a journey and Ezra’s approach was this – let’s fast and humble ourselves before God. An attitude of full dependence on God. In this text, we see that the purpose of the fast was to seek help from God and ask for a safe journey. Our human intellect is very limiting and we saw earlier that the physical strength of a male can only go so far. So, in every way, we need God’s help and direction.

Our point of emphasis here is that of a man who knew the value of fasting. Now, I must say here that fasting is a decision to go without food for the purpose of seeking the Lord on a particular issue and fasting is only complete when accompanied by prayer and study of God’s Word. Meaning that if you go for a day without food, you merely starved not fast. Amen!

If you are not the man who has made studying the word and praying a lifestyle, it becomes challenging to incorporate fasting. It is only through studying God’s word that you get to know that fasting and praying is the way of life for a believer. And if you are not able to study the Word and pray consistently on an individual base, how do you even consider gathering people together to fast.

As a male, it is important that you lead by example. Do not demand from the people around you what you are not already doing/practicing.

Examine your life and see how you can incorporate studying, praying and fasting so that you can be the example of the change you want to see around you.

MEN - Study

Ezra 7:10 (NIV)
For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.
Emphasis Mine

Reading and studying are often used interchangeably. However, when it comes to the kind of study that is mentioned in Ezra 7:10, it is the type whereby a person makes inquiry and/or seeks.
You want to find out from God about something or you need answers to something. There is a very fine line between both actions. Bottom-line, you are looking for results.

Now, imagine that kind of lifestyle whereby every step taken is ordered by God because the person has purposed to inquire and seek the Lord. If you were void in knowledge in a particular area, you are guaranteed answers by the time you leave your study session. Amen!

Here is the question for you. How productive, or how fruitful is your study time? A life that makes an impact in society is a life evident by the results it produces. Does your life produce results? Is your life and lifestyle outstanding? When we examine Ezra’s life generally, especially his leadership style, you can tell without a doubt that he was an outstanding leader. The reason is simple, he inquired and sought of the Lord. This point cannot be overemphasized.

The lives of many depend on you as a male. If you are a family man, your wife and children depend on you for the vision of the family. If you lead a company, the employees depend on your leadership and you name the rest. Wouldn’t it be re-assuring and securing to the people you lead if they know that your place of study is the place where you inquire of the Lord and seek Him?

Re-examine the way you study? Look for ways to make it more productive. It shouldn’t just be one of the things that you check off from your “to do” list. However, something meaningful in your walk with the Lord. Amen!

MEN - Help

The name Ezra is a Hebrew male name meaning “help/helper”. It is not uncommon for men to glory in their strength. “Male” is usually associated with strength, power, strong, etc. When in need for heavy lifting, one’s thought is first geared towards seeking help from a male or group of males. Physical strength is good and a gift from God. It is a blessing when used for the purpose given. This is very true in the life of Samson (Judges 14:6, 19; 15:14). When the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon Samson, he ripped the lion’s jaw with his bare hands. I call that “great physical strength”. Wouldn’t you? I encourage you read the book of Judges to learn more about Samson’s great gift of physical strength.

I believe Ezra being a male, was strong physically. And with a name like Ezra (help/helper), it will not be surprising that he did just what his name meant. This was even evident as he helped people understand the law of the LORD through his teachings (Nehemiah 8:13-17). A person who teaches others, especially the Word of God, is someone who knows that life is impossible without the help of/from God; is someone who is aware that physical strength fails at some point and there is a desperate need to depend on God’s help and is also someone who understands that it is possible to depend on God’s help because it is sure, guaranteed and ever-present. Amen!

As a friend, a father, a co-worker and you name it. Imagine how much relieve you will get when the people around you no longer come to you or depend on you for everything, rather seek help from the Helper Himself even as they see you do likewise. If they must come to you, or if you must go to them, it is such that you all look up to God for answers. Amen!

Ezra 8:21-23 (NIV)
There, by the Ahava Canal, I proclaimed a fast, so that we might humble ourselves before our God and ask him for a safe journey for us and our children, with all our possessions.
I was ashamed to ask the king for soldiers and horsemen to protect us from enemies on the road, because we had told the king, “The gracious hand of our God is on everyone who looks to him, but his great anger is against all who forsake him.” So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer.
Emphasis Mine

Knowledge of the Word gives us the opportunity to live self-sufficient lives in Christ. Knowing that He is our ever present help, very dependable and will not fail us. Physical strength, although great, is very limiting. The God-kind of help has been made available to the male. This help/helper is the person of the Holy Spirit. Do you know Him?
In this day and age, we have the resources to learn more about His help and benefit from it. The bible describes the Holy Spirit as the Helper.

John 14:26 (NKJV)
But the Helperthe Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.
Emphasis Mine

As a male, remember continually to challenge the people around you to seek help from the Helper Himself. By so doing, you are helping them keep their focus where it needs to be.  Amen!


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