RIVERSIDE, CA- On Saturday, August 20, Riverside Community Health Foundation held their annual “My Hair, My Health” conference at Riverside City College. The conference featured speakers, vendors, activities and a documentary screening. Dr. Leita Harris, of Nurturing You Women’s Health and Wellness, spoke on “My Hair, My Hormones”. Dr. Dede Teteh also spoke where she held a dialogue session entitled, “Sister to Sister.”
What it do with Lue
This is a question that you should carefully consider. You see, every day you’re trading your life, your soul for something. The question is, for what? Fame, popularity, financial gain, sex, pleasure, power, success. If that is the case, think of what the rich man in Hades would tell you – [Luke 16: 22-24]. Think of what the souls of the redeemed would say to you [Revelations 7:13-17].Think of what God has done to save your soul! [John 3:16].
Can I tell you about Esau? Esau’s life is the story of a man who traded his soul for fleeting pleasure. He sold his birthright, which included not only material benefits and family privileges, but spiritual blessings as well, for a bowl of soup. It says that “he ate and drank, and rose and went on his way” [Genesis 25:29-34]. He didn’t think twice about what he had done. He did it, it felt good, and only much later did he come to regret it. [Hebrews 12:17] however says that, “afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears.” Listen, the Bible says, “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires…. [Ephesians 4:22, 23]. Don’t let the devil corrupt your mind. “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” [Philippians 2:5]. For God says, “I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” [Jeremiah 29:11].
I want you to know that the Devil doesn’t give a damn about you. That’s right! THE DEVIL DOESN’T GIVE A DAMN ABOUT YOU! He could care less if you go to Hell. Matter of fact that is his job, to get you to compromise knowing if you do, that you would go to hell. See his only job is to kill, steal, and destroy…. And if he can get you to exchange your soul for the trinkets of this world, then he had done his job. Now, I speak in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves of righteousness for holiness. … [Romans 6: 19].
You see, in the world of the ancient Hebrews, everyone served someone. It wasn’t a question of if you would serve, but who you would serve. Everything you had came from someone else and it came with strings attached. Choose your master wisely. Jesus puts it like this: “No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. There I implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. [2 Corinthians 5: 18-20].
When the pressure of life seems to boil over—and it does for everyone—Pastor and Grammy-winning musician Smokie Norful has one piece of advice: take the lid off. This concept was inspired by watching his grandmother make her signature dish of sweet rice. When the heat got too high, the pot began hissing and boiling over, like it was about to explode. His grandmother would remind him the only way to avoid an eruption is to remove the lid. Similarly, the only way to avoid an emotional overload is to take our own lids off—that is, to stop being trapped inside ourselves and instead look to God and his grace to show us the strategy for becoming all he intends us to be.
This is the premise behind Norful’s new book Take the Lid Off: Trust God, Release the Pressure, and Find the Life He Wants for You (Thomas Nelson, September 5, 2017). In Take the Lid Off, Norful—who is the founder and pastor of Victory Cathedral Worship Center, a congregation of 5,000 members with three campuses in the Chicagoland area—outlines four steps that help us to relieve the pressure and draw closer to God in the process:
- Look Inward, experiencing the cleansing of forgiveness and the power of God.
- Look Outward, seeking for others to experience the joy of living for God and have the best God has to offer.
- Look Upward and marvel at God’s love and strength to accomplish his purposes.
- Move Onward, devising a strategy to accomplish all God has put in our hearts to do.
Norful, through detailed explanations and relatable examples, guides readers in understanding that, when you focus on these four steps, the pressure of life goes down, you gain peace and perception, and things work out much better in the end. By working to “take the lid off,” readers can become the people they were created to be.
To underscore the message of Take the Lid Off Norful is partnering with his long-time label home, Motown Gospel, to release a digital-only album titled Nothing Is Impossible. The twelve-track project, available September 9, 2017, features some of Norful’s most beloved songs of encouragement and inspiration, including “Still Say Thank You,” “No One Else,” and “Run ’Til I Finish.”
For more information, visit www.TaketheLidOffBook.com.