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  • Sanyade Okoli

Taking Hold of 2021

Updated: Jan 8


A happy New Year to you all! I hope you had a safe and pleasant festive period and managed to get some much-needed rest – physically, mentally and emotionally.


I pray that in 2021 your roots will go deeper and deeper in the Lord like they have never done before. The new year is already showing us that we will need to be sufficiently rooted and grounded in the Lord in order to not be buffeted by the unrelenting waves and winds.


I have to be honest with you; I have been struggling to settle down to write a blog post. My mind has been all over the place. I thought of several things I wanted to write about but I couldn’t seem to settle on one. I started two different posts but didn’t have the unction to complete them.


I trust that you are well aware that generally the articles I post are just what God has laid on my heart (usually concerning my life) that I go on to share with you. Think of it as me making extracts of my journal public. 😊 So, if God doesn’t lay something specific on my heart then I simply wouldn’t post. Please bear with me.


Having said that, what I do have on my heart to share with you now is what I have been doing to try and set my 2021 on a solid footing. I hope you find it useful.


Many years ago, as I approached the end of a year, I would simply write in my journal what I wanted God to do for me the following year and pray through them once the list was complete. I would then promptly go on to forget about my list and not even pray much about them during the year. 😀 Then, I progressed to writing a list of what I was grateful for in that year before proceeding to dictate to God what I wanted Him to do for me in the following year. Progress right?! At least I was now showing some gratitude. 😊


However, as I became more yielded to God, I started asking Him what His desires and instructions were for me in the coming year. That was the game-changer! At the end of 2019 I used a hybrid approach. I asked God what His plans for my year were and also told Him my spirit-led heart’s desires. Needless to say, my “hit-rate” in 2020 was much higher. 😊


The interesting thing was, as He was laying His thoughts concerning the year on my heart, though I wrote them down I had absolutely no idea how what He was saying would manifest. For example, He said:

  • “Do not expect the status quo. Expect Me to do things differently and turn things upside down, right side up.”

  • “Be bold, courageous and daring.”

  • “Keep stepping out being led by your spirit-man and expect Me to come through with miracles after miracles.”

Little did I know what was ahead of us with the pandemic, ensuing lockdown and me stepping out to not only write but to also launch a blog site. Hmmm…. It really makes me wonder what hindsight we will have a year from now. 😊


In addition, I started using a year planning booklet (God bless PU for introducing me to it) at the end of 2018. It first gets you to walk through the past year before planning the next. One of the best things about it is seeing how, despite all the challenges you faced, God remained true and faithful. As we end a year it is so easy to lose sight of the victories won - big and small - over the period. By going back to revisit the year, it reminds you of God’s track record in your life and emboldens you to believe Him for greater things in the coming twelve months. I also like the approach it uses to get you to think through your desires for the coming year. Furthermore, once you start doing the exercise annually, it helps you to build an overall picture of your life journey with God. You can find the planner at https://www.yearcompass.com/gb/#download. Even if you’ve already planned 2021 I wholeheartedly recommend you check it out. Let’s face it, 2021 is already showing us that we cannot over-plan it!


The Lord has also introduced something new this year. In 2020 I participated in two spiritual courses. The first one was Hosting the Presence - an 8-week intensive but life changing course which teaches you to not only be aware of God’s presence in and on your life but also to appropriately steward that presence to impact those around you. The next course is from 6th March to 24th April and again I wholeheartedly recommend it; especially if you want to take your spiritual life to another level this year. Here’s the link to register if you are interested: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1nzMn5fOLxkQ-vxHYglcag1zwcvOETp-LFdVNbzelhwo/edit?ts=5fd49ae6#responses. Having said that, you have to be serious o! It’s intense, with books to be read and homework to be completed. If you don’t keep up let’s just say that you will be “eased out”. 😀


The second one was a School of the Prophets run by Rig Africa (www.rigafrica.org) in partnership with Kingdom Community (https://www.instagram.com/kingdomcommunityng/?hl=en), a fellowship I am a member of. Between those two courses I received lots of prophetic words. I also learnt about the importance of properly stewarding prophecies in order to experience their manifestation. I shared my learnings on this with you in the blog post https://www.justasiam.ng/post/giving-life-to-prophetic-words.


Well, it’s now a case of physician heal thyself. 😀 Before even starting my reflections on 2020 and planning 2021 the Lord has had me transcribing all the prophetic words I received in the past year (I usually record them on my phone as they are being given). It has been a slow process as all the transcribing apps I have tried are, shall we say, somewhat wanting. 🙄😊They are, however, better than typing everything from scratch.


Having finally just finished transcribing them, I shall recut them according to the following categories (i.e. “process them”):

  1. What God has said about my identity. Who He says I am and how He sees me.

  2. God’s promises to me including who He has revealed Himself to be in my life and what He says He will do concerning me.

  3. What commands and instructions He has given to me.

  4. What He said about the timing of the promises so I know what’s a now-word versus a later-word. This will help to limit future disappointment when a later-word doesn’t happen now. 😊

  5. What God has said about my sphere of influence - who He has called me to. This is a new one I literally just learnt this year. 😊

It will be with this understanding that I will go on to plan 2021.


For those who are thinking I didn’t receive any prophetic words last year, what about ones you may have received over the years? Have your processed them? Are you doing all what God has told you to do?


Please also remember that the prophetic words need not have come through a third party. What about all the things the Lord has been speaking to your heart directly? Whip out your old journals and go through them. If you haven’t journaled in the past then purpose to start now. It’s such a shame to not document all that the Lord lays on your heart and, having recorded them, to not actually do anything with them.


You have to admit, what’s the point of God making the effort to share His plans and desires with us and then we proceed to plan our year(s) without making any reference to the guidance He has already given to us. If we use that approach, we are likely to then spend the year either going off-track or being in a place of stagnation and praying to the Lord for direction that He had already provided. As the saying goes: If you want a different outcome, try a different approach. That’s what I am doing for 2021!


Once again, I pray that you have a most blessed and fruitful 2021. Do partner with the Lord to make this prayer a reality by investing the time and effort to take hold of 2021 now!


Liked this? Then please "help me sell market" by commenting, sharing and/or subscribing for more "weekly-ish" posts. 😊You can also follow me on Instagram @sanyadeokoli where I share "daily-ish" pithy musings. Thank you!! ❤️❤️❤️

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