School is out or almost out for many educators. Parents are thinking of all the creative fun ways to engage their children for the summer months. Teachers are excited the school year is over. I feel the excitement too :). Among many projects coming to a close for the school year, yesterday concluded the statewide training across ten cities. It has been fun getting to meet new people, connect, build relationships and collaborate for future projects. One project here at Take Back Ministries, is the Excellence in Character Scholarship program. We are looking forward to receiving this year's applications from our hard-working and talented graduating seniors in both Dallas and Tarrant Counties. Reminder: the deadline for applications is June 17. Be sure to share the scholarship information with any graduating senior that can benefit from it. As always, the repost by my incredible husband will get you thinking about new ways to grow in your family. Month of June is Father's Day- celebrate, celebrate! Wishing my incredible husband and all our precious fathers a very Happy Father's Day. Love & Blessings!!
The final session with the young ministers I have been meeting with was last week Friday. We discussed the importance of service. That same evening, my beautiful wife and Queen was part of a community discussion on refugee resettlement in the Dallas area. The stirring in my spirit was to share with the ministers the importance of service in marriage and family. The last post by my wife had generated quite a stir. For the past two weeks the emails have not stopped coming in; asking if we will feature more practical posts on creating lasting legacies in our communities. The influx of emails prompted a check on the analytics of the post. What I discovered was 4761 unique visits and view on our website. That is double the amount of unique visitors we have ever had in a two-week window! All glory be to God! I am thrilled to see the vast ways God is encouraging His people through this ministry. I am very thankful for my beautiful Queen, what a dynamic gift of God she is! And I am so proud of my daughters! Their love for Jesus brings me so much joy as they soar in their ordained purposes. To God be the glory!
I believe the result of the analytics speaks to the need for authentic encouragement in our culture. Also, it speaks to the search for practical solutions by anyone that has lived through major milestones and is willing to share with others. There is always something powerful about anyone that has gone through what is been shared or talked about. There is an authority that flows because of the encounter or experience. This kind of authority makes the impact contagious. The authority that flows is verification and not a state of perfection. We want to continue to share with you as the Holy Spirit leads to encourage people.
Back to my time with the ministers, I shared about the importance of serving our families by tending to our gardens. Our marriages and families are gardens that need constant tending. Tending to a garden is an agricultural term; it is cultivating, planting, watering, weeding, fertilizing and repeat continuously for healthy growth. Tending will be different for each marriage and family; however the process is the same. Here are three ways; my wife and I have tended to the garden of our marriage and family for the past twenty-eight years:
Prayer: We made a commitment to God and each other to always pray about everything and anything. Everything begins and ends in prayer. A lifestyle of prayer keeps our hearts in tune with the Holy Spirit (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). It keeps our hearts open before God and each other. Family altar was a treasured time in our home while our daughters were little. This was a time to share scripture and pray together. With just my wife and I now, we still find time for our altar time together. A constant reminder of our dependence on God, is a plaque in our home that has traveled with us through house moves. The inscription reads: “A family that prays together, stays together”. It gives me great joy to see our daughters carrying on this legacy even as singles. Prayer keeps our garden well tended.
Serve: Home is where service is birthed and lived. Brothers, it is very biblical to help around the house. It is biblical to take out the trash, wash dishes, cook, change diapers, feed the house pet, and any other job that needs to be done around the house. This is what Galatians 5:13 refers to about using our new found freedom in Christ to serve one another in love. Brothers, our sisters are to be commended for their exceptional service at home. God made women in a special way. Women are skilled in juggling multiple things at the same time with exceptional results too. I have watched through the years with admiration as my beautiful wife serves our family in various capacities.
Vision: I have shared the value of having a vision for your marriage and family in my books. There is a God ordained purpose for your marriage and family. To find this purpose, know it, and live it, is powerful and fulfilling. To aimlessly live life without purpose is to waste the gift of life God has generously bestowed (Proverbs 29:18). As it is the custom of living things, the vision for your marriage and family will grow and bear fruit. It is important to be patient and never run ahead of God to witness the fruition of the vision and purpose. Farmers will tell you that patience is a close friend. It takes an estimated 25 years for an oak tree to bear its first fruit –an acorn.
Brothers and sisters, you are God's co-workers, God's field and God's building. Let's lead the way in our culture by tending to our gardens. It brings our Heavenly Father great pleasure! God Bless you!
For The Cause of Christ,
Dr. Johnson Obamehinti