Life is a journey and in spiritual language, it offers everyone a chance to pursue a destiny, whose destination is becoming what God created us to be and to do. Definitely the ultimate destination for all God’s children is heaven, but we ought to faithfully pursue God’s intentions for our lives to receive a warm welcome in His paradise. I want to hear the words of the Master; ‘well-done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of the Father’, welcoming me at that grand entry into heaven. Be it, as it may, there are many lessons to learn from life and looking back at my productive years (since I accepted the Lordship of Christ), there are many that have sunk in.
Twenty five years ago, I received Christ as a teenager; it was a simple response to the altar call with no goose bumps, no tears of conviction and no fan-fare, yet with a deep profound transformation that has lived with me to date. What begun as a friendly move to the preacher’s call, grew in intensity as I set out on this Christian faith-walk with a new zeal. It was after a year that I received an added bonus of a deep sense of a call to serve God; never mind that I could not comprehend its enormity.
At first, it was more of enjoying fellowship with the brethren, which was warm, participating in our fellowship/ church activities and living out my christian faith to the best way I knew that kept me going strong. When I began reading my Gideon’s New Testament bible, cover to cover, over and over, again; I was following the instructions of our leaders. I must add that I found it so inspiring, refreshing and enjoyable. Yet all this was a divine setup for my destiny
Three years later, after being filled with the Spirit and taken strides in my christian walk; I had grown by leaps and bounds, and now I knew clearly the call of God upon my life and what God will require from me in part, to fulfill it.
However, I still didn’t know its reach, intensity and how it will unfold, but I was excited to pursue it. Ironically, this did not stop me from holding unto my ambition of becoming a medical doctor, and becoming successful as the world defines it. Three years later with more clarity and many ministerial assignments well executed, by the grace of God, I had dropped all my ambitions for the call of God. It was two years after this ‘yes’ to the call that I went into full-time ministry service.
I thank God that I begun serving Him early and that now with twenty two years of ministry service and seventeen years of full-time ministry, I have learnt a lot. I definitely do not know everything, but through my service to God, which has taken me to many nations, seen me speak to countless people, accorded me the opportunity to meet many great and profitable people in the body of Christ; there has been much to learn. It also follows that with all these years, and being action oriented as I have been, there are many mistakes I have made and learnt from, and lots of differences I have encountered and appreciated.
Like Paul, I will say; ‘Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended:but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus,’Philippians 3:13-14.
Following is the first two of the lessons I have learnt from seemingly negative or challenging times, which by divine design have worked for the good of my destiny. They are not the conventional motivational success principles but yet they are the daily experience of all those on the journey of impact. I trust you will benefit from them and be equally encouraged to pursue your destiny with purpose and experience great progress.
They are six lessons, in three parts of two lessons each. Get ready to be greatly blessed.
LESSON 1 : Change is a constant
Everything that grows, changes; change is the only constant of life. Unfortunately change is hard to accept and it is not easily welcomed. At first I could resist change, then later grudgingly accepted it, but now, I have learnt to embrace change. This has not made change any easier, rather I have changed my attitude towards change. Change of location – ministry fields, has never been easy; for me God has uprooted me thrice – with major changes of place, people and resources. I have learnt that a friend can leave you, seasons always change and even the best of times can change. I am also changing both physically, emotionally and spiritually. Instead of regretting over what could have been if things had remained the same, I pray and embrace change no matter how uncomfortable it might be. It’s not easy but possible. Accept change and always yield to God. This will facilitate continual growth and evident progress in your life.
Whether you like it or not, friends will change in your life. Clients will change and even suppliers will change. There are things you love and want to hold on to, but as night follows day, those things will change. Always be prepared for change and when taken unawares embrace change. The only change you should resist is the devil-instigated change; those changes that are out-rightly working against your destiny can be changed. “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen:for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal,” 2 Corinthians 4:18. All visible things are temporal. Change is a factor of life; even unfavourable changes can be used for your good. As you keep your eyes on God’s word you will facilitate glorious changes in your life. Even changes that will appear to be working against you, will work for your good because you trust in God. “But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord,”2 Corinthians 3:18.
LESSON 2 : Opinions are like noses, everyone has one
Opinions are what they are; mere sentiments, conclusions or perspectives of someone. Everyone has their own opinions. The uninformed have an opinion, the well-meaning have an opinion, the uninterested have an opinion and even those who mean evil still have an opinion about what you ought to do or be. I also have an opinion, not just about me, but about anything if provoked to think.
Therefore, God’s word is the only absolute truth, once God speaks, no need for others’ opinions, or else you will be torn in different directions. Opinions are different from well proven counsel of the tested and tried mentors, and trusted friends; they are the; ‘what-do-you-think-about-this’ perspectives.
Learn to differentiate godly counsel from mere opinions. If you do not know what God told a man, your opinion should be kept to yourself. This has helped me to mind my own business and not to poke my nose in what other people are called to do. It has also galvanised my commitment to the call despite other people’s negative opinion of me or any well-meaning opinion of what I ought to do suggested by a friend, yet not God’s leading. Many God-ideas have been sacrificed at the expense of good ideas, because people’s opinions.
God’s leading is not an option, it is not debatable; it has to be followed, if you are to maximise your life.
~ Robert Ssesanga
Pastor Robert Ssesanga is the founder of Aflame Gospel Ministries a multifaceted Christian ministry and Senior Pastor of Aflame Gospel Assembly in Kampala, Uganda. An author and conference speaker, he travels extensively preaching the gospel with signs, miracles and wonders, as God attests to His word with power. His emphasis on victorious living and enjoying the supernatural life has been instrumental to many lives that have been impacted over the years in many nations. His passion is to demonstrate the gospel and impact generations.