More now than ever with the Covid 19 Pandemic you realise that spirituality is wealth.
It is obvious that we have absolutely no control over what happens to us on earth. Many of us started off with visions boards, goal lists etc for the year 2020 and the start of the new decade. We planned to slay our goals and live our best lives however the year started with pretty much the whole world being in lock down. At some point the only goal was to stay alive. So many people have died, many are in hospital, many have lost their jobs, many have lost loved ones, many businesses have shut down, many have lost their homes etc.
I was talking to my cousin the other day who mentioned that statistics show that the numbers for many churches have increased with many people running to Church in these times. A particular church have met their 5 year membership goals even before the pandemic. Now more than ever we realize that there is more to life than being here on earth.
For me personally I realise that my relationship with God is my most priced possession. During the lock down we faced so many uncertainties for example even though for 5 weeks there was restriction on movements my husband had to go out several times to buy diesel for our generator and to also buy food/groceries for the house. It was scary seeing him risk his life with the virus, police men on the streets trying to make money, etc etc. Also the scare of the armed robbery gang in Nigeria “the one million boys” . They were going to different estates and streets to rob. At some point we heard they went to a neighborhood close to ours. I remember there was also the scare of a revolution from the masses who couldn’t afford food in the lock down period. Through all those fears God was my anchor. There is a Bible verse that says “the name of the Lord is a strong tower. The righteous run into it and they are safe.” (Proverbs 18:10)
My family and I relied on Jesus as our anchor. This allowed us to have peace in the storm. I recall the Bible story of the plagues in Egypt. The Egyptians went through 10 different plagues which included diseases, locusts infestation and even death. Through it all, the Israelites were in a safe place called Goshen.
Many years ago, while I was sleeping “I heard the Lord say ‘Omi, I will give you Goshen”. I quickly researched on it.
These are some of the things I found: During the plagues in Eygpt, Goshen was not hit. It was a place of protection and God had out the Israelites there intentionally from Josephs time. Goshen is being/living near God and following His voice. In the story of Joseph, Joseph told his brothers that He will put them in Goshen near him. He said He will makesure all their needs are taking care of , them and everyone connected to them. They woultndt want for anything. Pharoah told Joseph to tell his brothers that He will give them the best land in Egypt. In Genesis 47 verse 5-6” Pharoah said “Joseph should settle His Father and brother on the choicest land. Joseph took care of them and made sure they had plenty of everything. Israel acquired property and flourished in Goshen.
In summary Goshen is the nest ladn, choicest of land. It is a place of flourishing and provision and prosperity. It is a place o fmultiplication. It is a place of protection. Most importantly it is a place of drawing near to God. It is a place of good health (Psalm 1-5:37). Goshen is the secret place.
I experienced Goshen through the lock down and I’ll be sharing many of my Goshen experiences in the lock down through this series which would be every Wednesday.
One of the best things that happened to me was to go away from social media for almost five months. I was able to spend time with my Father.
Some of the benefits of connecting with the Father include the following:
- Peace in the midst of uncertain
- Transformative ideas and solutions in the midst of financial crisis
- Health and healing
- Protection in the midst of uncertainty
- Spiritual intelligence
- Wealth transfer
I can go on and on but let me share a few tips on investing in your spirituality
Tips on investing in your spirituality
- Quiet time: Every day take out time to spend with God. I’m talking about intimate time with Him aloneand not time praying in a group, or at church etc. Those things are good but not as important as the one on one time you have with Him. Give God the first fruit of our time. He should have our time when we wake up. Exodus 33: 7 & 11: “Moses took his tent and pitched it outside the camp, far from the camp, and called it the tabernacle of meeting. And it came to pass that everyone who sought the Lord went out to the tabernacle of meeting which was outside the camp. So the Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. And he would return to the camp, but his servant Joshua the son of Nun, a young man, did not depart from the tabernacle.”
- Informal: Let it be as informal as possible like when you are hanging out with your friend. You don’t have to kneel unless you are led to by the Spirit of God. Worship Him. Sing your favourite worship songs. Play your favourite worship songs. Dance for and with Him.
- Write: Write to Him. For example write in your journal “Hello Daddy….. Pour out your heart to Him, speak to Him. Tell Him your burdens. Tell Him how happy you are with the things He has done. Tell Him the things that make you sad or you are struggling with.
- Listen: At some point be quiet and say nothing. Listen out to what He says. You may see visions, He may drop a word in your spirit.
- Ask Him what He wants to talk about. As Him what is on His heart. Ask Him what He is doing in Nigeria or in your neighbourhood and ask Him how He wants you to join Him.
- Read your Bible: Start with the book of John. You can also do the Bible plan on YouVersion app or get a devotional.
- Allow the Holy Spirit: Let the Holy Spirit feel welcome and let Him flow and lead you.
- Periodic time out: Take out long periods to be with Him. Go off social media. Go on a holiday. Just find times and be with Him. Have a weekly sabbath which is a day you do nothing but spend time with Him.
- Take His presence with you everywhere
- Join a community of believers. Some communities I have benefitted from are Kornerstone(@kstonecc), Ignite gla (@ignitegla), Kingdom Community @houseofprayerng; Rig nation @rignationofficial
- Join a Bible believing church : Some churches I recommend are Guiding Light Assembly, Elevation Church Nigeria, Elevation Church US, Bethel Church, The Liberty Church London, The Pioneers Church by Rig Nation etc.
- Spiritual courses – Some courses I have done include Masterlife, Experiencing God, Mind of Christ, Hosting the presence, The Biblical Dream and Interpretation course etc. You can do Masterlife, and Experiencing God at Guiding Light Assembly (@guidinglightGLA), Elevation Church @elevationng and Liberty Church London @tlchurchlondon. For Hosting the presence follow @houseofprayerng . For The Biblical Dream and Interpretation course (@the_dreamerscorner)
- Learn from Gods disciples such as Apostle Joshua Selman (you can find many of his teachings on Youtube, Pastor Isi Igenegba, Esther Longe, Imisioluwa Owolabi, Pastor Nathaniel Bassey etc.
- If you would like to develop an intimate Father Daughter relationship with the Father, you can also get my 21 day devotional titled The Fathers daughter. It is on www.okadabooks.com; amazon and kindle. You can download the French version on my website www.omilola.com . You can also check my blog www.thefathersdaughterweb.wordpress.com for posts from March 1st 2018 for a free download. You can also join one of our groups by sending us an email email@example.com
Don’t wait till there is a crisis before you invest in your relationship with God. For the last couple years I’ve been investing in my relationship with God and so in this season I was able to reap the benefits which the fruit would begin to show in this season.
Invest in your relationship with God, the returns are out of this world.
Please also note that a relationship with God is different from going to church and also different from a relationship with a pastor. We must all have a one -on -one relationship with God.
Typically, in this section I share an inspirational story of a person or different people that emphasises the principle of wealth we are teaching. For this session, I think it makes sense to share my story. You would have to buy my books The Richer Woman and Birthing Purpose for my full story. Everything I do and I am is completely by Gods grace. He saw this girl who going down a hole and rescued her from committing adultery, loosing her family etc. He turned my life around and transformed me from a moth to a beautiful caterpillar.
Give God first fruit of your money.
Now this has been a very controversial topic however it is a principle that has worked for me and is working for me.
It is controversial because many people do it out of fear. Some have been told that they are under a curse if they don’t. It is not mandatory and I don’t believe there is a curse if you don’t. Jesus already died for us and redeemed us from the curse. I pay my tithes because of love. I pay my tithe because I love God and I honour Him. He is my provider and according to what the Bible says in Deuteronomy 8:18, He is the one that has given me the power to get wealth and so therefore it makes sense to give him a percentage of my money. In actual fact the way I see it is that He owns all of my money. Personally I give more than 10% and my prayer is to be like someone I respect so much Rick Warren, author of Purpose Driven life and get to the point I can give up to 90%.
God loves it when you do so not because He needs your money but because it is an act of love. The first time it was done was in the story of Abraham when He met the priest Melchizedek. I remember a time when I was in debt and miraculously got the money to pay off my debt. I was in debt of N3million and I had N2.8milliontherefore I was short of N200,000. I felt a huge burden within me to pay my tithe because I knew it was the God thing to do but it was a struggle because I needed to pay back the debt in full and I didn’t know how I was going to do so. I told God that if He wanted me to pay my tithe He should provide the money. I went to Church the day before I was due to pay off my debt for Sunday Service. At the end of the service I was at the foyer in church and someone saw me and asked how I was doing and how the status of my debt was. I told him I was about to pay it off but I was short of N200,000 but I trusted God would do it. Next thing he brought out a single Cheque leaf he was holding and wrote a cheque of N500,000. The amazing thing is that he only had that one leaf and not the whole cheque booklet. He said he normally doesn’t do that but the Lord had asked him to carry the leaf to church and clearly it was because of me. This is how I paid my tithes on the N2.8 million and also had extra to pay off my debt completely.
I remember another time when I was in debt in my early years in investment banking when I was in my twenties. I had taken a car loan that I had no business taking because I had the cash to pay for the car in full. I thought I was being smart by taking the loan so that I could use some of the money I had for other things. Fast forward a few years after I was at a point where the debt was a huge burden and I was also living from pay check to pay check. I prayed to God to help me with my finances. The first thing He told me to do was to pay my tithe. Ah I couldn’t believe it. I’m in debt and how is giving my church part of my money a good thing. Thankfully I obeyed and I found out that psychologically because I knew I had only 90% of my salary left to spend I ended up being careful and even created and started living on a budget that which helped me become financially displcipoined. Not too long after I got a phone call from a family member saying that he would like to take up my car payments and ended up paying for my car debt.
I understand some people have concerns in paying their tithe but my advise is if you are worried that your Pastor will sqaunder your money then you are most likely not going to a good church. Good churches are governed by a board of Trustees who ensure the finances of the church are used appropriately. Also most churches should be transparent with how they use the funds received. You should know the projects the funds are used for. The Lord requires even Pastors and Churches to be good stewards of money. I wrote extensively about tithing in a letter I wrote to a man who is against tithing. You can read it here.https://www.bellanaija.com/2018/04/omilola-oshikoya-writes-open-letter-daddy-freeze-subject-tithing/
In this season where there is so much financial uncertainty and a looming global recession this is the best time to invest in your spirituality by paying your tithe. Like in the Bible in Genesis 26:12 “And Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold. The LORD blessed him” . Replace your name where you see Isaac and make the declaration. “And Omilola sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold. The LORD blessed her”
Tips on paying tithe
- Give to God even before you spend. Don’t wait till after you spend to see if you have enough. Just as you are to give Him first fruit of your time, give Him first fruit of your money.
- If you are a Salary earner you can get a direct debit so that the money goes out of your account as soon as you get paid
- As a salary earner I used to give out of my gross salary. Some people choose to give out of their net salary.
- The tithe i.e. 10% should be the starting point. I encourage you to increase it every year. Trust me, the saying “the more you give the more you receive” is a fact and one of the laws that governs the earth. It is also a Bible promise. Check Luke 6:38
- If you own a business, you should pay tithe on your business earnings and also from your salary. Ideally a business owner should have a salary so you can pay your tithe on your salary. For your business you can pay from your profits and this will require you prepare financial statements. Personally as soon as revenue comes into my business account I pay tithe. I am able to do this because I’m the sole-shareholder. If you have partners or other shareholders and investors you may not be able to do this unless ofcourse it is clearly stated in the company policy. Hopefully you have partnered with like minds. Again if your business has other shareholders or investors you can just pay tithe on your salary.