“And Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel: You have seen what I did to the Egyptians, AND HOW I BORE YOU ON EAGLES’ WINGS AND BROUGHT YOU TO MYSELF.”

– (Exodus 19:3-4, NKJV)

The highlighted scripture above tells us how God caused the Israelites to rise above the challenge of the Red Sea. In this year, like all others, there will be challenges. Some people will be overwhelmed and overcome by these challenges, while others will ride and glide over the challenges 2021 will present to them. It is my prayer you will be among the latter group. Below are some things we need to do in order to rise over 2021 challenges, viz:

Repent: Repentance is simply turning to God and doing works befitting of repentance (Acts 26:20). Repentance has to do with the exercise of the mind. In Yoruba language (spoken in Western Nigeria, Togo, Benin, some parts of Brazil and Cuba), the word repentance means deep introspective thinking that leads to a change in behavior. Many of the challenges faced by mankind are caused by sin, poor choices and being far from God. Repentance upgrades our lives and is antidote to the sin challenge which bedevils mankind.

Inspire yourself: Mary, the mother of Jesus ran to the house of her relative Elizabeth after the Angel Gabriel announced she was going to conceive supernaturally. The moment Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby in her womb leaped and she was filled with the Holy Spirit and she began to prophesy to Mary (Luke 1:39 -45). What an account! Inspiration causes a stirring in our hearts that leads to the delivery of purpose and destiny. To rise in 2021, be regularly inspired by the teaching, preaching and personal study of the Word of God.

Sanctify yourself unto God: As believers in Christ, God has set us apart to Himself for a holy purpose (Ephesians 1:4-5). The second leg of sanctification is that we must yield to God and further separate ourselves from the world. The more sanctified we are, the more we will see divine manifestations. The clear instruction Joshua gave the Israelites before they overcame the Jordan River challenge was that they sanctify themselves (Joshua 3:5).

Innovate: The pandemic and the new world order has thrown up new challenges that require new approaches. Innovation is creativity that has to do with new ways of doing things. A new wineskin (animal skin used to hold wine) with elasticity is required to accommodate a new fermenting (and expanding) wine. An old rigid, hard and inflexible wineskin cannot accommodate a new wine (Matthew 9:17). Just as the world is becoming overly complex and complicated so also are the challenges of the present time. There is need to regularly pray to God for new insights, new anointing and approaches to tackle the challenges of the 21st century.

Negotiate with the Word of God: A dictionary meaning of negotiate is to obtain or bring about by discussion or by conference. Negotiation include two-way communication, persuasion, strategizing and cooperating. All the aforementioned are ingredients of a good and effective prayer that obtain results from God. In negotiation two parties arrive at an agreement or consensus based on terms of the contract that is favorable to each party. If the terms are not favorable to either party, there will not be a contract. The Word of God reveals the mind of God and shows us what is acceptance to the Divine. To rise in 2021, we must align with God’s will as shown in His Word. (Scripture reference: Isaiah 41:21, Amos 3:3).

Grow exponentially: Exponential means rapid increase. Because the challenges we see today are daunting and unprecedented ordinary growth may not suffice anymore. We must be deliberate to grow mentally, spiritually, socially, financially, etc. To grow exponentially, we must increase our capacity and devour more. And growth in all forms is usually a function of exposure. Exposure to the right information, association and location. Isaac was able to overcome the challenge of the Philistines contesting with his inherited wells because of the grace of God and an enlarged capacity and he outgrew his challenges as a result. (Scripture reference: Genesis 26: 15-30).CONCLUSION: Receive grace to rise in 2021. Have a blessed new year in Jesus’ name.

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