Pastor Joshua Chukwuemeka resident pastor of Gateway International Church Rumuolumeni Lighthouse, Port Harcourt recently hosted a Singles event to enable members reason together on the best way to pick partners that would bring them lasting peace and progress.
He told the church members and guests that they came to eat and discuss what is described as, “most sensitive aspect of persons joining together to form families; marriage as God’s idea and how God wants you to seek and click your marriage into working”.
The event held on February, 29, 2020.
Tare Dite-Ojoko, a guest speaker and member of the church talked to the singles on the topic, ‘Why Marriage? God’s Plan For Securing and Keeping a Spouse’.
She unfolded her lecture thus:
“The best time not to make mistakes in marriage is when you are single, this is the time not to make mistake. Once you get into marriage, it’s no longer a mistake, is your reality but, the best time not to make a mistake is when you are single. So the things that you are going to be hearing, please take them, hold unto them, and run with them because they could make a difference in your life.
Pastor Emeka Kalu (guest speaker)
Pastor Joshua Chukwuemeka
“Late Myles Munroe said something…. he said ‘marriage is the greatest attraction and yet it can be the greatest distraction’. And do you know what he meant by that? It seems that you can see somebody all put together going somewhere, you have direction, you are on assignment, you have purpose, you have vision then you make one mistake in marriage and it derails you completely from that destination and destroys what you were getting out for. That is, why it can be the greatest distraction but it is also a greatest attraction because everybody wants to get married, everybody wants to get hooked, even the so called feminists, they want to get married.
“Somebody wants to have someone by his/her side, that is true, but if you don’t handle it well, that is why you can see a family that is so good, doing well, siblings living peacefully and they bring in one wife into that family, and that family is scattered; brothers don’t talk to each other anymore, because of one wrong error, one wrong turn, one wrong decision. But tonight I am very sure that revelation will hit somebody’s heart and that person will not go into error in Jesus Name.
So in Securing a Spouse what do you look out for and how do you know this is the one? How are you sure you should go on this journey and what are those things you need to do to prepare so that the journey is the beautiful one and not of sorrow?
That is what we are going to be looking at, but you must realize first of all that marriage is God’s idea. It is God’s plan. I was talking to some people a few days ago and I said marriage is a tripartite covenant and not a contract, it is a covenant. You have God, you have the man, you have the woman in a Christian marriage. If it is an unbelieving marriage, it is only the man, like a contract, it is only the man and the woman but if you are a Christian, your marriage involves you, God and your spouse.
“But you see what happens when the Lord comes and he is in that covenant with you and joint with you. He releases and makes available all of his resources to back you up, to see that that relationship succeeds. But the issue is, it doesn’t always happen that way, you see Christian homes and marriages breaking up and I got a revelation out of that, which is that the Lord comes with his resources but when we get into marriage we tell Him, ‘Stay on your own Lord, I want to do marriage my own way,’ I bring my sense, he brings his sense and we end up in shame, but it will not be your portion in Jesus Name.
Peradventure you are married, from today, begin to tell God, ‘Lord back me up with your resources, I don’t want to do marriage my way, I want to do it your way’, because there is a plan and purpose for God bringing two people together in a relationship, there is an assignment he wants fulfilled and that is why the first step for you is to marry in the faith, to marry a believer, that is the first step, that is the minimum requirement. So, if you look at God’s purpose and plan for marriage for a husband and wife (you can go to Genesis 1:26 – 28 and Genesis 2:18 that is where you can see the purpose), as you get into relationship with that person, ask yourself:
- Is this person giving me companionship in this relationship?
- Is this person such that I am becoming a better person because I am connecting or relating with him or her? Because anybody that you constantly stay with and you go down is not the person for you. God is not an author of confusion. Sometimes, we get into relationship with people and it’s as if our lives take the worse turn and as if things stop working for us. If from friendship things have stopped working, how would marriage be? Because like our husbands will say “it is from the smell of mess that you will know how shit would be,” sorry for my language but it is the truth, if things are not working when you are dating, is it when you are married that they will work?
Williams Ofoeze (Artiste)
Emem Femi (artiste) right
Check, what kind of friendship you have because the number one purpose of God is that you find companionship, you find somebody that will help you on your destiny journey. Sometime ago, I went for a seminar, years back, long before I was ready for marriage; I was still a student at the time and Mathew Ashimolowo had a finance conference at the Stadium. I remember very well, it had nothing to do with relationship but he made one statement that had to do with relationship and that stuck with me. He said, “Woman be careful the person who you talk to that you want to marry because once you marry that person, your destiny becomes intertwined with that person’s destiny; your destiny becomes joined. So if it is a destiny that is a mumu destiny, your own becomes a mumu destiny.”
That is why you got to be careful, you don’t just join with anybody, ask people if you want to go to Borokiri and somebody is going to Aba, is it the same route? So you must ask where is this person going to so that I will know whether I am going with that person or not.
- Another thing apart from companionship is Vision. Vision, that is what you should look at and that means you too should have a general idea of where you want to go to, so that you don’t join the wrong ship. So as a young girl, catch a vision, as a man catch a vision. Don’t be walking anyhow like somebody who does not have direction. Dr. Paul Eneche of Dunamis Ministries and Pastor Izunwa of Gateway also reechoed no man has a legal right, a moral right to demand that somebody follows him where he doesn’t know where he is going to. You don’t know where you are going to and you want one girl to follow you, to where? Where do you want me to follow you to? You must have a general sense of direction, even if you don’t have the fullness of purpose because actually, vision and purpose are progressive; they keep revolving, things keep evolving but truly, you must have a general sense at least before you act otherwise you wake up one morning and say after you have married her or she has married you, that God called you to Sambisa Forest as a missionary. Did you ask me if I want to be a missionary with you? That is why you should have an idea of where you are headed.
- Enhanced Productivity: If you look at Ecclesiastics 4:9 – 11, it says two heads are better than one because they have a greater reward for their labour. So now I’m hanging out with this guy and my life is going down, my money is reducing, why? There is something not adding up, there is something wrong and if you are a guy here please don’t become an ATM machine to any girl you have not married. Don’t become an ATM, they hit your chest and money comes out, for what and why? No, you can’t be an ATM to any girl, yes I’m not saying you should be stingy, part of investing in a relationship is bringing out money and not unnecessary spending and money that has no direction. Every money in your pocket as a man must have direction; must have a destination it is going to. You don’t just spend anyhow, that is why you must have vision because vision will put you in a straight jacket. Vision will narrow and focus you, you don’t spend anyhow.
I’m talking to my single brothers here, so you need to listen and listen very well. This is the time for you to generate income, stock out income, not the time to think, ‘all I want to do is marry’. Yes it is good to marry yet is also good to have something in your hand, otherwise romance will become annoyance after marriage. It is good to have a checklist when you are in a relationship or even if you are not in a relationship. The best time to have a checklist is when you are not in a relationship because that time, your head dey think well, once you get into a relationship your emotion beclouds your judgment, and sometimes you make nasty and rash decisions ordinarily you will not make if your head was sane.
I remember the story my husband told me, he said some years ago when he was still in the world dating, he knew that something was wrong in one relationship he was in but he couldn’t define so he just told his friends, ‘Come, now wey my head still dey correct, any day I tell una say I want marry this girl, make una carry me run go lock for psychiatric hospital. This girl, I no suppose marry am but I know know the kind love where dey shack me. I just dey tell una now where my head still dey correct say anytime I tell una say I want to marry, please lock me up as that is not my real sense.’ And it helped him but finally they didn’t lock him up because I saw him and he married me (Hallelujah).
So that is how it is, the best time to make certain decisions is when you are not even in a relationship so that when it happens, you already have premade a decision. One of the things I really want you to have on your lips is what they called the ‘non-negotiable’, those things that I cannot negotiate or compromise with him. What are those things that I must see in a relationship for me to continue in the marriage, what are those things that I cannot stand?
Some cannot stand domestic violence and I warn everybody not to stand that. If you are dating somebody and he slaps you, or she slaps you, check that relationship again because if in a relationship they slap, in marriage they will box you, they will kick you, they will blow you, and they will blow your eye. A sad thing happened; I’m sure they were telling her, ‘sit down, endure, stay in that marriage, endure’, until the man blinded her eyes and left, she has one eye now from domestic violence. So that should be on your non- negotiable list, it is something that you can’t tolerate from friendship. Look at what he does around you, he is angry and punching the wall, when the love clears from his eyes in marriage he will punch you.
Then for the woman, the words that come out from her mouth, by the time she finishes with you, you are less than a man, she has emasculated you, she has rendered you useless without dignity. Brother what are you waiting for? Do you need the Holy Spirit to tell you to run? You don’t need him to tell you, you should run for your life because there was something that happened; a man couldn’t stand the words of his wife’s mouth; day in day out this woman bashed this man to the extent that the man committed suicide. He couldn’t take it anymore because she rendered him useless with her mouth, she emasculated him, she made him less than a man because that is what verbal and emotional abuse does, makes you less than a human being. It reduces you to nothing, so if anyone of you is involved in this please stop it. You are destroying another man’s soul.
“Another thing to check out for is similar beliefs and values. If you are in a relationship with somebody or even if you are meeting somebody in the first instance, ask, what do you believe in? What do you stand for? Especially, for those of us who are Christians. We need to have this clearly stated. I tell people, if you are a single girl and you are standing on a road waiting for a taxi, or a keke and a car, Nntuoyi (air conditioned) stops for you to enter and you enter, you better make that person know somehow within the next five minutes of your faith otherwise it will be difficult to later let the person know you are a Christian. See what it does, it hinders or prevents the person from trying certain things with you. Once you just say something about church today being good, or, ‘oh my preacher was….’, the man will say ‘Mmmnn, church people, ok there is a way I cannot behave around this girl, I cannot tell her, ‘can you come follow me, can we stop at this hotel?’ But once you keep quiet and he is gisting and you are gisting together, it is difficult for you to clearly state who you are later, so check the values and the beliefs of whoever you are getting into relationship with because I tell you, it will affect the trajectory of your destiny. It will affect the line that you take in life. Check your beliefs, he must have similar belief. I am not saying you should agree on everything, that husband and wife will just agree on everything but there are some things you have to decide to disagree on and disagree peaceably on and there is no commotion in the house because you are two different human beings coming from two different places, two different spiritual backgrounds.
Please check the person’s work habit or what I called resourcefulness. This too is very important because one of the cries of wives today is that their husbands are becoming lazy. Sometimes you see a woman who works so hard and the man does not do anything or he just sits down and expects a woman to struggle and bring in food. Then the one that pains me the most is that the man will now tell you I don’t want to eat this kind of food. It’s the woman that works for the food, she cooked the food and you rejected the food. Sometimes he says, ‘Is it because I lost my job?’ What if you lost your job? Can’t you do something else? That’s why as a single girl, if you are dating somebody please ask, “What are you doing with your life? Even if the person is working, ask the person, ‘if you lose this job now what can you do?’ Because you need somebody that is resourceful who can put one naira plus one naira against two naira, no matter what happens, somebody who is resourceful even if laid off, will not sit down in one place a day in the house even if it means to carry sand in a construction site. He will carry sand, irrespective of whether he is a degree holder or not.
And you brother, if you are looking for that girl, please don’t look for somebody who is coming to do Oyiegu or Odosia, but somebody who will build with you because your number one primary duty as a woman is to be a contributor and a helper. Look for a girl that is resourceful, that can do something to make her life better and not wait, depending entirely on the man that will come and marry her. Where do you see that kind of thing now that Nigeria is as bad as it is? It needs two people putting their hands together to make things work and you are crossing your legs, painting nails, fixing hair, waiting for one man that will come and marry you and carry all your family problems on his heads. If it is my brother, I will tell him to run because nobody wants to marry a liability these days. Everybody wants an asset because life is hard as it is, so we need people who can help us bear our burdens.
So, young girls while you are waiting for a man, live; live your life. Live, look for something to do, improve on your skills, get better, buy a house if you can afford; buy a land, don’t wait for a man and don’t think that the man would be intimidated. A man meant for you will come irrespective of the fact that you have money. What is that? Why do you have to put your life on pause? When you hold a remote control somebody says you just pause the person; why do you have to put your life on hold because you don’t want a man to run, that man is not good enough for you. A man that is good enough for you will be happy that he met you, hardworking, making money, and having properties and may the Lord finds you like that in Jesus Name.
#Gateway International Church#