The Director of Pentecost Men’s Ministry (PEMEM), Apostle Emmanuel Ofei Ankra-Badu, has asked Christians to deny themselves and look up to God for help in all situations.
“Jesus is not looking for only those who are saved but disciples,” he said, adding, “Some of us are saved but we are of no use to Him. Our Master desires a life that is transformed.”
Apostle Ankra-Badu was speaking at the just ended Teshie-Nungua Area Apostolisation which took place at the Pentecost Convention Centre. He spoke on the topic, “Dealing with the Self.”
Quoting Mathew 16:20-24, he said all those who want to follow Christ must deny themselves, take up His cross and follow Him.
“Self-denial happens when there is cooperation between us and Christ; we do not need to fight the process, we just need to be cooperative,” he said.
According to him, Christians who long to be disciples of Christ must exercise great spiritual discipline, saying, “Spiritual discipline is the shaping and the nurturing of the Christian’s inner being for us to look like Christ in the classroom of the Holy Spirit.”
He explained that spiritual discipline brings transformation. “If someone comes to know Christ, the only thing standing between him and Christ is self-actualization,” he said, adding, “Jesus did not believe in self-actualization but rather self-sacrifice and self-expenditure.”
Apostle Ankrah-Badu further explained that everything God gives to Christians is to help them serve the church. He also said if Christians do not love God, they will not be able to love their neighbours, and that spiritual transformation requires the discovery of God through the new birth.
“What are we looking out for from the people God has given us? We need to disciple them in the ways of the Lord and let God disciple us as well,” he stressed.
According to him, if one gives himself up for discipleship he/she has to go through the converted life, the discipled life, and the protected life. “People who have reached the protected life stage always look out for something to do for God; they get busy for God, and approach all their activities with a godly mentality,” he revealed.
Apostle Ankra-Badu also spoke about challenges of Christian life and explained that sometimes when God takes Christians through difficult times, they take a self-introspection to discover whether they are serving men or God.
“There are times you must take your destiny out of the hands of people and place it in the hands of God and allow Him to work on you,” he said, adding, “When those critical times come, don’t ask for help from men but ask for help from God who gives you a song in the night.”
“Anytime you are brooding, you set a stage for the devil; anytime you are rejoicing, you set a stage for God,” he added.
The four-day retreat was on the theme, “I Will Build My Church.” According to the Area Head, Apostle Dr. Alfred Koduah, the event was to deepen the spiritual standards of the church leaders and usher them into a new level of commitment to the Lord and His work.
Report by Isabella Gyau Orhin