For in His eyes, we are all Daughters #WithoutRival and this eliminates every reason we should ever compete with one other… Lisa Bevere. Without Rival
I don’t know about yawl but I’m saved enough to admit that if not for Jesus, I would have been the most selfish, competitive Bitch ever (excuse my French)
ME, MY, MINE would be the number one grammar in my vocab.
My prayers would have been mostly selfish.
Very VERY selfish.
And can I tell yawl that up until recently, they were partially selfish.
When DDK came for Warrior in Heels, part of what she said was something like
‘…if all you are praying for is yourself, then something is wrong. If prayers have not taken you to different countries and different people, then you have not started…’
I frankly didn’t know what DDK meant but because I wanted to truly KNOW, I asked God to explain it to me. I didn’t ask DDK.
You see, I had seen the whole #MiddayBabyMidday movement by Bobbie Houston of HillSong and Color Sisterhood,
and I knew they were basically praying against injustice in the world, especially against women and human trafficking, but I won’t lie, it still didn’t quite ‘enter’
Somehow, God began to explain to me what unselfish prayers looked like.
Now there is this part of praying for your friends who have shared prayer points with you. Then there is a prayer that you pray for people you don’t know, may never know, but definitely need your prayers because gurl, we are not called into isolated or selfish lives.
The biggest way God taught me this was with my son.
Every time I spoke all my plenty plenty prayers over him especially before I dropped him off at Daycare, I would feel God kinda tug me to do more…
To pray for not just him but the Child Minders, the other kids there, their parents etc.
The exact thing I was praying for me and my baby was the exact same thing I began to pray for them…
I would pray that the moms have wisdom from heaven to build their homes right and they raise their kids in the fear of the Lord. That these children walk in purpose and that the homes they grow in is being built on the foundation of God. That they know GOD from a young age and so on.
I go a step further to pray for his classmates and friends in the future when he graduates Day care into ‘real’ school. I pray into his future and the other kids I don’t even know.
Now truly I can pray that my son is ‘all that’ and I could care less about other kids and their mamas. I mean, I want for my kid to be best behaved, most intelligent, most adorable kid in his school, etc. so why pray for another mama and her kid so her kid may now be better than mine?
But God is like,
What if these kids, with whom your kids will grow, are spoilt, and ‘one kain’, would you prefer that? Wouldn’t you rather pray for the kids and parents with whom your kids will be with, that they are being trained right and in the fear of God? That your kid has a class and school full of kingdom minded kids who are saved and love Jesus from a young age and so don’t teach my kids the bad habits they pick up at home. Isn’t it better to ‘dwell together in harmony’ so your prayer points reduce?
As I got more understanding of that, I began to pray for kids everywhere really. My prayer world expanded. I don’t want to just be the mom whose kids are the BEST and then care less of what becomes of the other kids.
I believe the root of that is RIVALRY and something that is NOT love.
It is same as the kids in my compound and neighborhood.
It is easy for me to have the best behaved kids and judge ’em mamas whose kids are unruly and badly behaved.
But who judgment epp?
How bad would it be for me to pray for my sister, understanding that it is way better to have a neighborhood of kids who are well behaved and playing together? Even if you don’t let your kids play with them, someway somehow, your kids will encounter them. And even if my kids never get to roll with them, INDISCIPLINED KIDS MAKE SUPER SUPER TERRIBLE ADULTS both as wives/hubs, teachers, Doctors, etc.
Nothing hurts when our prayers are all inclusive.
Now it doesn’t matter whether or how the prayers are answered. We are just called to pray beyond selfish prayers.
What do you think the Bible means here…
I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them… 1 Tim 2:1 NLT
I just strongly know that we need to move beyond trying to be number one and on to helping people past obstacles in their own lives so we WIN TOGETHER!!!
The simple truth is that with that kind of mentality, God will still bless us and ours.
His blessing ain’t limited or about to finish.
He has MORE THAN ENOUGH to go round!!!
I recall those University days. When someone will have one secret information about a Course and hide it under their bumbum so nobody else knows.
They won’t share their past questions or that ‘Special’ way to answer the question to fetch more marks.
I was tempted a lot to hold back some stuff as I did constant tutorials but I would just teach and share the knowledge I had till I felt drained.
Guess who still made BEST GRADUATING STUDENT and with a First Class?
My sharing did NOT hurt my blessing.
We should want more for our generation and those coming behind us. We should not drop rivalry and ‘I must get ahead’ mentality on the lap of the next generation, but instead, we help as many as we can.
WE CAN ALL LOOK GOOD TOGETHER
WE CAN ALL PROGRESS TOGETHER
In your industry, among your colleagues especially in the market place, there is a LOT of competition!!!
The world is constantly trying to pitch us against each other and make us fiercely compete, even if we have to draw blood. Everyone wants to not just get ahead, but pull her colleague down on the way up.
I recall one of my friends missing a very important test application deadline because one of her colleagues who knew about the deadline didn’t share with her, maybe because she felt the girl was going to pass and stop her own shine, as that friend of mine is super intelligent.
Under 2 years now, my friend has done that exam and is now in the system.
Look, even if it is a case of ONLY one person can ‘pass’ or ‘winner takes it all’ like The Voice Nigeria, which really is a competition, we don’t have to have a dog mentality. There can be love even in competition. Because yup, A’rese may have won but that did not come from your portion in life.
God has a plan for the life of other talents there and they too can walk into greatness even without being the Winner.
A’rese did not steal Brenda’s STAR. Or Chike’s. Or DNA’s.
She did NOT
She CAN NOT!!!
She truly just picked up her own STAR. Her STAR doesn’t diminish another’s and truth is any other person can make something huge from their singing career too. I am particularly looking forward to Brenda.
Something else struck me with The Voice Nigeria.
Personally I preferred the Top 16 performance of Timi’s Great Nation to any individual performance
In fact everyone at home agreed that it was just the best performance of all…
I think we look better together. Truly.
But let’s even leave the world, this whole competition can really be stupid, especially among the children of God. For the world, it is normal but not for us kingdom people with a kingdom mindset.
It should be more about collaboration than competition if we are jointly going to make sure the enemy has nothing on us, and that we get all the goodies God has prepared for us.
I mean, rivalry is not just stupid, but also senseless and counter-productive. (Don’t worry I am talking to me too) Nothing drives home my point than this video of the lion and the lucky buffalo…
We know the information that can help our colleagues get a promotion and enjoy good stuff but we hide and hoard. Rivalry because we have to BE BETTER and enjoy the ‘buffalo’ alone!!!
I am reminded of something I heard James and Betty Robinson say when Lisa and John Bevere were guests on the show.
James said that people would caution them in promoting the Bevere ministry so much on their show so that their TV audience don’t now take the money they want to give to the Robinson ministry and give to the Bevere ministry instead. And I love how James said there is no need to compete.
At the end of the day, it is God’s work and God has enough to FUND each of them without depleting what He wants to give others.
Let’s stop making God look like His supply is limited. Because it is NOT!!!
You have access to information that can make life easier for someone but you keep it, and enjoy it alone. Heaven forbid we share. As if a blessing on their life is debited from your own bank account…
Now I need to highlight that point above which I learned from Lisa Bevere MY LIFE HERO…
A Blessing on your Sister’s life is NOT taken out of your Bank account. God has enough for all His children. As we share, He even expands our world.
I am frankly tired of the competition I see in the world today. I still heard someone in church yesterday say ‘…but he is my competition’.
My heart broke.
We limit God when we get into all that pettiness. We are trying to tell Him He doesn’t have it within Him to take care of all His children.
Ah, that Lisa Bevere’s statement reset my head.
And you know, I didn’t get it from the Book. Let me tell you what I do when I see a new book or movie that I love but I do not have access to yet.
I go and read up interviews and posts about it. That’s what I did or I am still doing. I heard her say this line during an interview. Heaven knows how many times I re-wound that part of the video.
‘…We need to stop looking at each other as though a blessing on them was taken from our bank account because we are created WITHOUT RIVAL…’
I just can’t with the kinda wisdom that comes from Lisa Bevere.
She has my number…. FOREVER!!!
I recall when I started my business. The devil has and still throws me some ‘competition’ vibes. He makes me feel like other Chicks or guys in my line of biz are my competitor. I recall when I met Dr. Donald Olu of DTrimmers on Inspiration FM.
I loved how just totally welcoming he was to me as a newbie in the Fitness world. Said he had gone through my blog, loved my devotional, asked and encouraged me to get certified, which I was already on and we just flowed.
I heard of someone else yesterday who was complaining about how an older colleague treated her when she just started her biz and went to him. He was even going to do her dirty.
I know there is temptation to be competitive with others in your field and people don’t even help when they start comparing and saying this and that but we have to RISE ABOVE SUCH PETTINESS!!!
The devil has such a divisive spirit and doesn’t like brethren especially dwell together in unity, so he throws all those silly thoughts in my head but I am quick to counter it. My mind is not his dumping ground so I ain’t letting him put any trash in.
Joyce Meyer says when those thoughts drop in, say out loud
‘THAT IS STUPID’
And then counter it.
That don’t mean I am stupid, that just means I am wise enough to discern a stupid thought and stop it from taking root
2Corinthians 10:5b says we take EVERY THOUGHT and purpose captive into the obedience of Christ…
The Message captures my thought perfectly, especially when we back up a bit…
3-6 The world is unprincipled. It’s dog-eat-dog out there! The world doesn’t fight fair. But we don’t live or fight our battles that way—never have and never will. The tools of our trade aren’t for marketing or manipulation, but they are for demolishing that entire massively corrupt culture. We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity.
I especially love how it says ‘tearing’ and then ‘fitting’
It just makes me happy to see that with some effort, I can ‘arrange’ myself. I don’t have to just let ‘whatever will be will be’ and be living in rivalry with my sisters, whether in the same line of business as me or not, just because I think they are progressing faster in life than me.
But I go even further than countering; I start to pray for the person’s business, job or ministry.
I pray that people connected to me are running in purpose, running hard after the assignment God has given them. I pray that their arms are strengthened and they do not drop ‘faith balls’.
That they are filled with wisdom on how to walk this Faith journey.
Oh I pray they we all are successful at whatever we do and we all have careers and businesses that are compatible with our Faith, and that we brand and tag every single thing we do PROUDLY CHRISTIAN whether we are selling bracelets or helping people stay in shape.
We carry Jesus proudly and make Him famous!!!
It has not always been like this for me, I confess.
There was a time I had such a beef/competitive/comparison filled life and I blogged some about it here (Authentically me and Surprisingly Satisfied, one of the BEST posts I ever blogged). I wasn’t praying for nobody.
I was just so dissatisfied with my life and I was in this stupid race where I thought people had gone ahead of me and I couldn’t really celebrate anything that looked like progress from their end.
Trust me when I say God did a deep work in me and had to excavate all that nonsense from me so he could grow this beautiful garden that my life is becoming.
No, I am not perfect and I sometimes find myself entering into ‘competition mode’ and then I catch myself quickly and REPENT!!!
I cast down the STUPID thought.
Sisters, we have a world to reach.
We have a devil to keep under our feet and not allow to escape like that buffalo while we rival ourselves. We don’t have time for drama. We fight and honey, ain’t no weapon stronger than LOVE. No wonder the Bible says LOVE NEVER FAILS!!! And please I am stopping myself from starting another blog post on LOVE NEVER FAILS right now!!!
Joel 2 also gives us some kind of perspective on this war we are in and how we are all part of this great invincible Army and even though we have our different roles to play, we all have to STAY IN FORMATION and drop rivalry fast…
7ff The invaders charge.
They climb barricades. Nothing stops them.
Each soldier does what he’s told,
So disciplined, so determined.
They don’t get in each other’s way.
Each one knows his job and does it.
Undaunted and fearless,
If you back up a bit, you see how powerful this Army is and how NOTHING can stop them and the verses above just tell me why this Army is truly invincible!!!
Each one knows her job and DOES IT and without getting in each other’s way.
Instead they do what God has told them individually, Yes, but still as a part of this UNBEATABLE ARMY!!!
Ah!!! I actually had to carry myself for a retreat where God explained it to me.
I am very intentional about praying that the various people in my life are not just walking but RUNNING HARD after purpose.
You know, one of my best friends has this thing for young girls, secondary school kids and all. So I saw a flyer on Facebook for her program
and the first thing the devil tells me is ‘so she had a program and she didn’t tell you IN DETAIL FIRST yet you find it on Facebook?’
Can you imagine that stupid thought?
If I wasn’t born again, devil would have had a PRIME CANDIDATE in me haha.
You need to know that not every thought that drops in your head is yours ooo.
A lot is from the devil and while we can’t stop the bastard from dropping thoughts, we don’t take it…
We take NO thought… 2Cor 10:5
And then we also learn to YELL A LOUD NO to the devil
James 4:7 …Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and He’ll be there in no time… The Message!!! (Yes we are all now in LOVE WITH THE MESSAGE version)
Mehn, I turned all that nonsense thought upside down and started to pray for the program. That the program will bless every young lady who comes and snatch any souls from the clutches of the enemy and that it is so successful and that my Booski continues to run hard after purpose and Jesus and she is strengthened for the journey and so on.
Then I rang her later that evening (mentally remembering that both our lives are fast paced and while we have a general idea of what we are both working on and what we are in faith for so we can pray for one another, we don’t always have all the finer details) and asked her for details and encouraged her through it as she shared her challenges and fears and victories and we updated on each other’s lives and so on.
See how the devil wanted to come and how I dealt him a black eye and then some… hahahahaha.
See ehn, we have to actively deal with satan ooo. We don’t just stay neutral. We go further to do something positive from the negative he intended because we are all daughters of a God unlimited in both His love and His resources and so we should be WITHOUT RIVAL!!!
Let me end with another story that happened over this weekend.
Shredder Gang, whose real name is Bunmi and who had inspired me FROM A DISTANCE, on my own weight loss journey, had invited me twice now for a fellowship she runs, and on those two occasions, I could not go.
Now Shredder and 1 are in the same line of Fitness business, and of course, the devil will want to make you feel like you are competing but both of us for some reason just became personal friends instead, understanding that we are CO-LABORERS and not RIVALS because we are both ‘crazy God lovers’ too.
I actually would always pray for her and her biz and her ministry and her walk with God and everything good for her. I just felt such a connection with her but I walked wisely in building that relationship because we need Squad Definitions too ooo.
Anyways, third invite and I could make it (especially cos she and Funto threatened me haha)
And oh my gosh!!! The moment I walked into that Sisterhood, I felt at home. I didn’t know these Sisters from NO WHERE but it felt like we had been connected since forever. I felt at ease. I could truly fellowship with them, lifting holy hands without fear or drama. (Yawl know I HATE drama)
I saw women share the Word in very practical ways and give words of knowledge and just correct each other in love, and accept correction and just BE POWERFUL together!!!
And then God, nicely brought to my remembrance something I had BEGGED HIM FOR ALL YEAR!!!
I had been asking God to bring me ‘deep rich authentic friendships within the body of Christ’ Now I have a lot of pretty Squad but most are vertical either upward (with my mentors) or downward (with my mentees). I wanted a tribe of women who ‘when we get together, I want to encourage you in your faith BUT I also want to be encouraged by yours…’ which is the Sisterhood goal!!! Ah!!!
I didn’t want mentoring. I had that covered. I wanted the strength that comes from just women having this very mutual horizontal thing going.
I had been tempted severally to start this on the platform of my blog but I always knew that God didn’t release me to.
See how God used Shredder to meet a deep intimate need in my life.
I left that meeting just totally refreshed and adopted into a family. What if I was being Team Petty and didn’t open myself up to friendship with Bunmi?
Or what if she was the one being Petty? I believe it was my praying for her that even prompted her to ask me to join the Sisterhood.
I am so excited about my new sisters in Christ (the feeling is mutual) and even though I am not going to be close to everyone, I know that there are some amazing women with whom I will be doing life and ministry intimately for a LONG LONG time.
You see ehn, we are not called to live in isolation. God has called us all to connect with each other but if we see ourselves as Rivals, we just may be putting off a testimony.
If you really need help with overcoming pettiness, cattiness, and rivalry, Lisa Bevere’s latest book WITHOUT RIVAL will help you. I PROMISE YOU!!!
Lisa is a writer that truly wrecks nonsense out of you!!! Plus she too has dealt with rivalry and comparing herself with other female preachers like her especially when she didn’t make the cut of the Most influential Female preachers in America a few years back and was so hurt by it. Of course, she has grown way beyond that and wants to help us…
I tell you, her Book shook me too. It made my resolve stronger to live with my fellow sisters WITHOUT RIVAL!!!
Nobody Rivalry epp ooo…
You can order her book here as it is releasing today yaaaaaaay. You can also find an e-copy because we all know it is not landing Naija for a LONG time haha. I have my e-copy already and I am just preparing my mind for the work it will further do.
You can download the first two chapters here too and enjoy. I tell you, Chapter 1 blew me away.
And if you read to this point, you just read a mini Book. Me sef I taya for me!!! Hahahahahahahaha
I love yawl too…
But really though, I strongly know that the WITHOUT RIVAL message is God’s heart for now. The Father wants us to co-labor without rivalry and bring in the ready harvest. We don’t even have enough active Laborers and we need everyone on deck and not being P E T T Y!!!
Can I get an AMEN!!!