“I was an outcast”

My name is Segun Oluwapelumi, I am a boy and an orphan.  I am 13 years old. I lost my parents when I was 8 years and the relatives I was left with maltreated me. When I could not bear the pain I ran away from them in Osun state, to Ogun state where I stayed in a church community and started working in restaurant washing plates in order to feed myself. I lived my life like that for more than a year before I came in contact with someone that took me to one of the coordinators at RCG Foundation. With the help of RCG Foundation, I secured a place to live, fixed back to school and they were responsible for all my upkeep. It was like that until I was finally accepted into an orphanage through the help of the foundation. I am grateful to RCG Foundation for accepting me, even when almost everyone I came into contact with referred to me as a vulnerable child. They would not want their children to have anything to do with me. I was an outcast. Now I have a sense of belonging, and I have been shielded from bad influence. I cannot imagine what my life would have been if I am still left outside all by myself. Thank you, I am very...
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“I was raped when I was ten, and the bitter experience took away my joy and hope”

I am 12 years old. I was raped when I was ten, and the bitter experience took away my joy and hope. I lost my virginity that I planned to keep until I got married. I was left with pains, agony, shame, anger, bitterness and fear. I was not given an option of sharing the experience with anyone, not even my mother. We are four in the family, and I am in the second born, we are a family full of love. Even with a great background like my family, I still fell a victim of rape. It all started on a Saturday morning like other days, I was ready to join my mother at her shop, so my elder sister got me a commercial motorist to drop me. On our way, the driver took another route and stopped the bike at a nearby bush. He dragged me to an uncompleted building and forced himself on me. My body was full of blood after he finished with me. He gave me a cloth to clean my body and warned me never to tell anyone, and if I failed to keep to his threat he would not only kill me but also mobilize his group to wipe off my family.  With pains I had to clean myself, but was left empty.  The man that raped me was four times my age. I became cold, and it was noticeable because I used to be a vibrant person. Everyone was asking me if anything was wrong with me, but I could not share with anyone, even though it was killing me inside.  My teachers at school were disturbed about me and had to invite my parents to ask them what could be the problem, because I could not concentrate at school, my performance at school could not be compared with my result before the tragedy. God put an end to the horrible experience a few months later, when RCG Foundation visited our school to have a talk on sex education, and gave us opportunity to see their counselors for any issue bothering us. I embraced this privilege, and I was the first person to get to the counseling ground. Even I could not open my mouth to tell the counselor my problem, amidst tears I had to whisper it in her ear, and the rest was history. Through the word of exhortation,...
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Let The Fire Beautify Your Life

Sometime ago, I was counseling a lady on the phone; she was lamenting and trying to make me see reason with her on why she needs to avoid the challenge she was facing at that time. As she was bringing forth her points, I was also letting her see the reason why she must persevere and endure the hardship in order to allow God to perfect His plans in her life. She would not agree with my view, and it got to a point that I had to raise my voice to utter the following words, “Stop running away from the fire, it beautifies.” After a while, I heard her voice from the other end, “Are you sure fire beautifies?” So, I took it up from there and I explained what I meant by that statement, and after a lengthy discussion we reached a conclusion.She agreed to face the situation no matter what.Today, she is blessing God for not quitting because her life has been beautified. Not all fire beautifies, some are destructive or consuming, and in such a situation you must run dearly for your life toward God, who is the only one that can protect you. Any fire that is taking God from your life is not worth enduring. Fire could be in the form of suffering, hardship, trials, temptation, affliction, examination, and even ailments.Fire could be compulsory, optional, permanent, temporary, but necessary. It could be caused as a result of one’s mistake; it could be allowed for test of faith, or it could be engineered by enemies through the loopholes we ourselves created. The fire we are talking about here is a refiner’s fire; the kind of fire that has the hand of God in it.The furnace of affliction in the family of God is always for refinement, never for destruction.Refiner’s fire that we allow will always lead to perfection of God’s will for our lives. Come to think of it, raw gold that was subjected to furnace of fire will come out refined and purified, but the process of such refinement and purification is always a tough period. This is applicable in our lives today. Though we know quite well that the fire we are facing now is as a result of our mistakes, we know the fire is from enemies as a result of our own sins or carelessness, but we fail to acknowledge...
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Peace Like A River

Perhaps you gave your life to Christ a while ago and yet you do not have peace of mind. You run from pillar to pole to experience peace, but all to no avail. You cast, you bind, you pray, you fast, but peace becomes a mirage — the more you chase the farther it becomes. You associate and mingle, and even dissociate from friends and relatives to experience this peace, but all you got in return is disappointment. How do you know you lack peace? If any of the following often happens to you, seeing this world as a place of competing with others and not as a place of complementing others; you are not in control of your emotions and reactions; you have personal ambition rather than God’s ambition for your life; you are fond of promoting self rather than promoting God and others; you value physical success more than spiritual success. Selfishness and peace are two things that are in opposite directions; they are two parallel lines that can never meet. If you are selfish, which is lack of love, you can never experience peace. I am not surprised that the two commandments mandated to us by our Lord Jesus Christ teach us how to be selfless (Matthew 22:37-40).  Throughout the bible, I have not come across where we were commanded to love ourselves, but several verses in the bible commanded us to love God and our neighbors. Loving ourselves is God’s work, and He has been doing it from the beginning of the world, and He still loves us (Jeremiah 31:3, John 3:16).  So, stop doing God’s work!  Do what is expected of you—loving God and your neighbors, and you will have peace of mind. Sowing means obeying God’s instructions, God’s words are seeds, stated as commandments in the scriptures and inspirations directly from the Holy Spirit (1 Peter 1:23). So, sow peace continuously as a seed through the words of God, when it is convenient and when it is not convenient. And you shall reap it as a fruit. As written in the scripture (Hebrews 12:14) to follow peace with all men and holiness, the more you obey the commandments meant for allowing peace to reign, you are sowing peace which you will definitely reap. Let me expatiate on the above mentioned signs of troubled hearts, which are in our lives as a result of...
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Inevitable Darkness

There was a day I was having an intensive Bible study of the book of Genesis.  I discovered that right from the beginning of time darkness has always been associated with void and hopelessness.  I learned that even in the darkness the Spirit of God is always present (Gen 1:2).  I realized that it was the darkness that made us know the importance of light, and it made us know the mightiness of God’s power (Gen 1:3).  In just a simple utterance God changed a hopeless situation.  I was amazed when I read that He separated light from the darkness (Gen 1:4). I thought within me that God should have destroyed darkness and replaced it with light, instead of separating darkness from light and still allow it to be in existence.  So, I reached the conclusion that darkness has an important role to play in any creation and that darkness must be experienced before any creation or birth can take place. Bringing this down to our lives, inevitable darkness could be to experience unpleasant conditions, what some people will refer to as calamity or a wilderness experience.  Something one did not wish for but unexpectedly materialized in one’s life.  It is inevitable because it is unstoppable; the darkness has been predestined because of its importance to instill valuable lessons into our lives, and to usher in a new beginning, a new direction, and a new chapter of our life. Light shines in the midst of darkness.  Plants grow during the night, and we sleep during the night. So, why is it that whenever we experience darkness such as, losing a job, the death of a loved one, going through a divorce, etc., we tend to lose our peace, become agitated or even commit suicide? Could it be a result of being fearful of the unknown? Your feelings do not determine how long you will stay in the darkness. Even in the scripture, we read that God said let there be light; it was not that something prompted God to make the utterance, but it was the ordained time to bring forth the Light.  In Ecclesiastes Chapter 3, we are made to know that there is a time for everything. Allow God to reach you in that darkness. As stated in Genesis 1:2, the Spirit of God was moving even where darkness was.  So, in that dejected and lonely place...
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