I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20
This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.
Be in the Spirit and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. Galatians 5:16
For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Romans 8:5-6
Today a lot of Christians battle with different question like; how to keep a pre-marital relationship clean? How to keep away from adultery? How to manage a troublesome spouse? etc. The truth is that we rarely hear straight answers to these questions but I believe there is something responsible for every one of these problems.
After I gave my life to Christ, I fell in love with the first scripture listed and it formed my very being. It is not just another faith boosting scripture or a declaration of faith, rather it is the reality of Christian faith that we must experience and live in the understanding of, so that the “I” in this passage of the scriptures refer to you. Today I join my voice with this man of a great God to declare that I have been crucified with Christ.
If indeed we have been crucified with Christ how is it that our flesh still yearns for carnal things. How is it possible that Christ lives in you and at the slightest opportunity you give in to the temptation around you?
If the life we now live is based on faith in God and the work of grace through Christ, why are we battling so much in our relationships? Jesus Christ our greatest example managed every relationship intelligently and we see that even when He was brought before the judges of this world, they found nothing in Him. If we have faith in Him, where are we missing it?
I write today not as one immune from all these but as a fellow who has gone up and down and understands better now. The source of any Christian is his or her relationship with God. When this goes down, all other things go down with it, no matter how much progress you appear to be making while you are far away from God.
Many times we say He has been faithful even though I have been unfaithful. What we fail to understand is that what we call faithfulness of God is really crumbs. So here we are celebrating the fact that we got the crumbs of the toast when we could get the toast itself.
What is the application of this powerful scripture, I have been crucified with Christ, so I do not live anymore, old principles need to be verified against the word of God and confirmed fit. Whatever situation you find yourself, look into the scriptures for answers. Don’t wait for situations to come before you get prepared; get a study Bible, read about the life of this man called Jesus, become familiar with His ways, because this will be your new lifestyle.
I have discovered by experience that my best times in life were those times when my relationship with God was at its peak. I express love to my husband the more when my heart is right with God. Here is another secret, God is Love, before we can love like God wants us to, we must encounter the heart of God. The ordinary man is incapable of loving as described in 1Corinthians 13.
It is disturbing and mind bugging when I see a child of God in an unequally yoked relationship, it tells me that it is either such a person has never been a Christian or has a crisis that requires urgent attention. If you are truly a friend to such a person, it is time to have a heart to heart discussion. And if you are that person it’s time to check yourself and address the issue. Find you way back to the Father’s heart.
Let me ask a question – Can a spirit filled brother or sister be asking for sex before marriage? If the answer is no, why do we hear of Christians being bugged by this phenomenon so much that people come to the conclusion “ no one is real in church anymore, so let’s go outside at least there I know what I am going to get” . Really such conclusions are indications that the so called Christian here is just fishing for a spouse through Christianity. Thank God likes will always find themselves.
Can a spirit filled husband beat up his wife, go without providing for his home, put down his wife at every opportunity and fail to consider his wife’s feelings? or can spirit filled wife nag at the slightest provocation, deny her husband the attention he requires, take out her frustrations on the children, in-laws and everyone around?
The answer is no! The spirit within us will not allow such behaviour, the Bible tells us that the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance Galatians 5:22-23.
The Spirit of God in us, empowers us to live the life we have been called to. Bible tells us in Proverbs that counsel in the heart is like deep waters and but a man of understanding will draw it out – Proverbs 20:5.
As Christians we are empowered to have solution for every matter, inside of us are answers as we plug into the Spirit. God has poured out His Spirit on us.
We need to move to the next level where Understanding is the order of the day. Reach deep inside of you.
I love you.
The past year was a very eventful one for me, there were high and low times. Today standing on the top of the hill 2008, alive, happy, full of Joy, I can say God has been very faithful.
As we begin the journey into 2009, let’s take stock of our relationships again and learn from our mistakes or achievements of the past year?
I took time to ask some people around (both single and married) this question and here are some answers……..
- Money indeed is like liquid and it takes the form you give it. If you make it a source joy in your marriage, then you run into problems when there’s scarcity of it. Money is great to have but should not be glorified above God! He (God) is the most important factor.
- Don’t let anything stand in the way of purpose. You will frustrate everyone around you (including your family) and yourself, if you fail to follow purpose.
- Forgive and Forget!
- You will need a bigger lie to cover a big lie. Never consider telling a lie as an option.
- Love is giving and giving and giving…………………………it is not selfish.
- Be a good team player, you write it in your CV all the time, now let team work begin at home.
- Don’t talk when your spouse is angry, allow the bubbles settle first. (This applies to me).
- Prayer works, there’s absolutely nothing that cannot be resolved on your knees.
- Soak yourself in the word always, it’s your sword! And don’t forget your shield, Faith!
- Always let go, God is the Master mould, He alone can change all things especially concerning your spouse and confusing situations.
- As you work on changing yourself, you will see your partner change.
- Be slow to speak, it pays to listen more and don’t speak hastily, for you cannot retrieve your words.
- Communication is very important; learn how to share your thought with one another but never during an argument.
- Do things together!
- When things back fire never say I told you. Share the pains and joys together.
- Woman, be submissive to your husband and Man love your wife.
- Seek God’s face for all things.
- Even in marriage there is personal spirituality and joint spirituality.
God help us all as we work towards making things work this year.
Marriage is like a man and woman going into a room and taking off their clothes with the light on. You get to see each other’s blemishes that have been hidden by clothes earlier. One of the greatest discoveries would be your partner’s attitude towards money. For some, the discovery is not immediate. And in a situation where one of the partners has lived beyond his or her means prior to marriage, it seems like the first thing they notice, once the doors are closed after the ceremony.
Money is a major part of human life. And money represents different things at different times, to different people.
Money represents time; money is a reward we get after spending hours of our life at working hard. Money is a problem solver. Money is a seed that can be sown to multiply it. Money is a gift to be shared with others that do not have.
Money gives a form of confidence.
Everyone should have some money under his or her control. By this I mean money that can be spent without having to answer to anyone on how and why.
Money can build walls between people in any form of relationship and this is even worse in marriage.
Most couples no matter how spiritual, educated or in love will disagree over money at one point in time or the other and where this is not well managed, light cracks begin to appear in the marriage.
I once read that when sex is good in a marriage, it is 10% and when it is bad it is 90%. I want to relate the same to money, when finance is good in a marriage; it is 10% and when it is bad it is 90%.
In the light of the times we are in today, I want to focus on when the finance situation is bad.
Everyone has a financial situation or the other, sometimes it seems as though marriage places a magnifying lens on our financial situation. Immediately after marriage your status quo changes, especially here in Africa, now you’re expected to participate more in family events and your own cost of living is growing too.
Whenever things are tight like this in families, there’s lot of pressure on husband and wife, or the intending couple planning to get married.
The stock markets have not boomed like everyone expected, plans have been made based on expectations that have not been met. Instead we have a situation where banks are trying to recovered monies borrowed out. And now a festive season is about the corner, what do we do? Where do we run to?
The last thing we are expected to do as believers is to take the pressure on one another and ruin the spirit of the season.
Love should help us bind more to each other, love can conquer all, fit your budget into what you have and enjoy a lower budget holiday bearing in mind that the next will be greater!
Though the cherry trees don’t blossom and the strawberries don’t ripen; though the apples are worm-eaten and the wheat fields stunted; though the sheep pens are sheepless and the cattle barns empty,
I’m singing joyful praise to GOD. I’m turning cartwheels of joy to my Savior God.
Counting on GOD’s Rule to prevail, I take heart and gain strength. I run like a deer. I feel like I’m king of the mountain! Hab 3:17-19 (MSG)
Although the fig tree shall not blossom, neither shall fruit be in the vines; the labor of the olive shall fail, and the fields shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut off from the fold, and there shall be no herd in the stalls
Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.
The LORD God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine high places. Hab 3:17-19 (KJV)
So put up the Christmas lights and start playing the Christmas jingles, put everyone around you in the holiday mood.
Bring down every imagination and high thing that exalts itself above the knowledge of God and enjoy this Christmas.
All things are working together for your good!
Lots of Love
No doubt, finding a wife or husband is one of the most tasking challenges single people go through. That does not mean all single people have to go through the same experiences. However, if you are in the process of looking for a spouse, I would like to share with you some useful ideas. My prayer is that God will lead you to the right person He has for you. And that brings about a point I need to explain briefly:
Is there a right person for someone to marry?
Without any hesitation, I say yes. God has a plan for your life. That plan includes who you marry. Just as you have to discover (not create) your destiny, so also you have to find (not create) who your spouse is. “The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord” (Proverbs 18:22, NLT). When people feel they could just marry whoever they see fit, God may not stop them. But they would have to live with the consequences of their decisions. So, there is someone meant for you as your spouse.
“How can I find her or him”, you ask.
Delight in God
“Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart”, (Psalm 37:4, NIV). Your starting point is with God. He is the Alpha, the Beginning. Pray to Him about your desire to marry. Trust Him to lead you in the right direction. Be sincere about accepting whoever God reveals to you as your spouse. Marriage is His idea. He knows who you truly need. He has the best for you but His best sometimes may not look as good as you want. Be careful not to look down on anyone. Be careful not to reject a gift because of the wrappers. Relax! Delight in His choice and you will later find out that God is always good.
Getting married should not be a race to see who gets to the altar first. It is not a competition to find out who could get married before whom. 2 Chronicles 27:6 says, “So Jotham became mighty, because he prepared his ways before the LORD his God”, (KJV). Do you want to be a great wife or husband? Do you want to have a great marriage? Then you need to prepare yourself. Arithmetically, ½ + ½ = 1. But when it comes to marriage, half plus half do not make a whole. Do not go into marriage because you are hurting or bleeding from past pains. You need time to be healed, restored, and made whole. God “heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds”, (Psalm 147:3, NIV). Relationship is a mutual sharing of lives between people. While God is working on your future spouse, let Him help you too to prepare yourself. That way, both of you would be a blessing to each other.
Use your gift of discernment.
You need it so much in this regard. A lot of guys tend to appear somehow lower in status than the ladies they are intending to marry. Dear sister, use your discernment before turning him down. Some ladies also had gone through some rough experiences that could discourage some men. Dear brother, exercise the wisdom of God before giving up on her. Joseph attempted to reject Mary because of her pregnancy. But God’s best deal for Joseph was Mary.
Look for someone to love
Are you searching for a Mr. or Miss Perfect? Someone out of this world? Quit wasting your time. The promise from God is that He will bless you with a “helper meet (suitable, adapted, complementary)” for you, (Genesis 2:18, AMP). Avoid setting unnecessary standard that could hinder you. Go for God’s promise, someone you could love for the rest of your life. Relate with singles. Come out of your shell. If you lock up yourself in a room for the next 10 years, how will you meet your spouse? There is a place for relating with singles even as you trust God to send you your spouse. Without being immorally flirtatious, get to know more about people who would like to marry you.
God is at work in your marital life, never stop rejoicing and praising Him.
victor adeola king
I share with you today the story of a woman, who can be you, your wife, your sister, a friend, please come along with me and enjoy going through this piece like I did when I was told the Story. So many lessons to learn, for everyone!
She felt hurt, wounded and disappointed by her trusted friend whom had pledged to be with her for the rest of her life before hundreds of people.
She could not imagine what her next line of action would be. Thoughts flooded her mind, questions poked her heart. How did I get here? She asked herself. How did I get into this situation? I thought I had it all figured out in the beginning. I never bargained for this.
After the argument yesterday I felt like throwing in the towel. It just seemed like this is never going to work, for the past 2 years it has just be one argument or the other. I try to explain myself but it seems I use the wrong words. I am just tired.
She was tired, tired of fighting, with this state of mind she decided to take her mind off the troubles of the world and enter into the only world she had always known nothing but security. She took her Bible and opened without necessarily looking for any passage and her eyes caught the passage ‘A wise woman builds her house and a foolish woman tears it down with her hands’
In her place of escape …
My Lord what are you saying? A wise woman builds? Lord what do I have in my hands to build with? What is even there to build?
And He answered; even the dry bones shall rise again! A wise woman builds because she has faith in her Lord. She believes His word that ‘He makes all things work together for the good of them that love Him and are called work according to His purpose’, ‘He restores wasted year, that the canker worm and the caterpillars have eaten’, He brings back all the glories that have been taken away.
A wise woman builds because she is a selfless one who understands that loves keeps no record of wrongs, she has communed with her Lord long enough to live out the words of her master who says, for my own sake I will not remember your sins, as far as the east is from the west I have taken your sins away from you. Love forgives, Love is not jealous, Love does not rejoice at the fall of another, Love never fails…
A wise woman does the right thing even when it seems like the most foolish thing to do; she takes in the scorn of friends, family and foes just the get to the mark (A marriage that works and continuously glorifies God).
She does not take responsibility for another person’s wrong but she tries to correct the wrong. She covers her husband’s shortcomings. She is like Abigail who acknowledged her husbands folly and acted to cover him. She is like Zipporah who knew what her husband did wrong and immediately takes action to save her family. She is that person who answers to the calling for a man to stand in the gap.
Oh Lord this is a lot; can I really do all this?
Yes you can, my grace is Sufficient for thee.
I know God is speaking to someone, please listen and hang in there.
|Have you ever been in a room that has been left for a while without use? The first thing you’ll notice is the stale air and dust. If you’re like me the first thing you will do is sneeze on entering and run for the louvers in order to take in some fresh air and expel the dust.
This description is what fits a number of Christian homes today. Mummy and Daddy are not on talking terms, and instead of obeying the scriptures by not letting the sun set on our anger, we let it set and rise for many days. The devil steps in and capitalizes on the space left and before you know it, a once sweet song has stopped playing.
What’s the situation in your home like? Is the air in your home stuffy? Do you have a well ventilated home? Do you keep the windows open to let stale air out and allow fresh air in? Do you remember to close the windows at night?
Remember, Love keeps no record of wrong; Love does not seek its own. If you really love your partner as much as you said then, you need to forget about who is wrong and work on creating an atmosphere to correct the wrong. Forget about how hurt you feel and try to make things work again.
This is not denying that the other person has done wrong, it is avoiding, killing an ant with a sledge hammer. If you lose the trust of your spouse in a bid to make a point, you will never make that point. In a matter of time you will find out that you have only succeeded in widening the gap between you two.
I can almost hear someone say I am sure you don’t understand Lola; you can’t imagine what he/she did. Whatever the person has done could not be as bad as what you did to the saviour before you met Him and even after you got to know Him. And you know what God commended His love towards us while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Can you follow in His footsteps by forgiving even without hearing a sorry?
Marriage is a call to live the Christianity we profess.
We need to take the words of God just as they are. Your actions will never gain popularity with men, quit getting counsel from people who don’t belong to same redemption plan as you. Bible says ’Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the ungodly’ Psalm1:1.
Submit yourself again to the Holy Spirit, forget about pride and yourself, think about the kind of marriage you want and work towards achieving it by converting all this stumbling block to stepping stones.
After every disagreement with my spouse I try to achieve some goals
Please let this words flow freely as often as they need to be said
God Bless you as you let love win always.
– omolola ezeifeoma
Something that worked before in your relationship, can fail when tried another time
Have you ever tried practicing something you read from a book in your relationship and it worked, and then you tried the same thing another time and it flops?
Relationships are very dynamic in nature, because it involves two people who are constantly changing too. Sometimes the change is positive and sometimes negative, so we need to depend on the Holy Spirit on a per second basis.
Every relationship is constantly evolving.
Change is constant, just as your partner is changing for better or worse, so are you. Sometimes while you are thinking your partner is the problem, you actually are the problem. Our relationship takes a different dimension every time we go through some change of any sort. Jesus Christ tells us about taking care of the log in our own eyes first. Once you have a log in your eyes, your vision will be blurred and you’ll misinterpret situations. Keep working on becoming a better you and rub it off on your partner, then your relationship will evolve for the better. A better you will handle changes better.
Your relationship will become what you want after you have given it time to grow.
Many people especially women believe in the happily ever after story and so after the wedding they look forward to an unending honeymoon. Please don’t get me wrong I believe in the honeymoon lasting forever concept but before then there’s a price to pay.
The Honeymoon experience is one that everyone must have and like I say to my friends you must try to bring some stars back from the moon. After the honeymoon period is over and life is returning to normal gradually (not like it would ever be normal again), you begin to see that your marriage is not perfect, reality begins to set in.
You need to always remember that your relationship with your partner will eventually become what you want it to be, after you have sown seeds and given it time to grow.
Nobody knows you and your spouse more than the one who created you two in the first place. Only God can tell what your partner’s line of thought and reasoning is, therefore only Him can give adequate direction on what to do per time. God is even able to tell you your partner’s expectations so you can step up to meet them if you don’t allow flesh get in your way.
Therefore only the Father himself can guide you through His Spirit on how to apply all you have learnt. Sometimes information come tailor made for you and sometimes customization is required from your part when applying knowledge. Whatever the case may be, trust the Lord to lead you through His Spirit to apply knowledge.
Finally my brethren.. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all you ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6
Counsel in the heart of a man is like deep water, but a man of understanding will draw it out. Proverb 20:5
Have you ever been in a situation where you are driving on what you call your sure lane (because over time you have used it and it has always worked) only to discover that taking your sure lane was a terrible mistake. For one reason or the other it just was not your day.
Or have you ever bought a one size fits all shirt only to find out you are an exception to the rule.
If you have been in any of these kinds of situations, I say welcome on board.
We live in a time when people are hungry for knowledge more than ever before. People are seeking knowledge from books, conferences, seminars etc. This is a great development I am really excited and happy about. I see young people in relationships (marriage or courtship), going for counseling programs, seminars and reading books together, in the bid to make their relationship work.
After getting all the information, we want to apply them in our marriage or relationship, but for some reasons we find out that this laws are not working for us. Is it that God’s word is not true anymore or the principles learnt don’t work?
Life has thought me that these principles work but they have to be applied uniquely.
Have you ever been in a Mathematics class where your teacher teaches you a topic and it seemed so simple then only to try applying the principles to the assignment given to you and find out the steps followed are not working anymore. I used to have that problem until God gave me a supernatural break through His word.
Let’s start by sharing the Basics you must know about every type of relationship before applying any counsel.
- Every Relationship involves two unique individuals
- Application of every rule or law guiding relationships, is unique
- Something that worked before in your relationship can fail when tried another time
- Every relationship is constantly evolving.
- Your relationship will become what you want after you have given it time to grow.
Every Relationship involves two unique individuals
Our thumb prints prove the fact that every human being is unique, unique in style, perceptions, reasoning, thinking etc. So also is every relationship because it involves two unique individuals too. No two weddings or families are the same in anyway. Appreciate the uniqueness of your partner and take time out to study it.
Application of every rule or law guiding relationships, is unique
Don’t expect that doing the same thing another person did in your own relationship will bring about same result, no matter how widely accepted and Bible based such rule is. Things always work differently in every relationship. Take for example the two fundamental facts about the place Love and Submission in a relationship.
The husband needs to Love the wife and the wife needs to Submit. Nevertheless Love and submission will not have same approach in two relationships. What a woman in a relationship with a liberal man will have to do to be regarded as submissive will be entirely different when compared to a relationship with a traditional African man. So also the way love is expressed by a westernized man is entirely different from a typical African man.
You cannot say he does not love me because he does not do this and this and that, you need to first check out the person involved and capabilities. As basic as some things may be, they are strange to some others. Our backgrounds are different.
Sometime we even assume too much about our partners.
My prayer is that this few words will mark the beginning of healing in as many relationships as need to be healed.
See you next week for more on this very interesting topic that touches my heart.
It’s Time to Experience God in the miraculous
By the mouth of Elijah, God declared a draught in Israel, yet Elijah was not to be excluded from experiencing the effect of the draught; nevertheless, there was provision for him to see with his eyes the dryness and experience God as Jehovah Jireh.
The first miracle – God tells him to go to the brook, a raven will feed you with bread, flesh and water. An outside person may say he is eating little but considering the situation, he had enough to meet his need.
Sometimes when things are tough all we have is just enough to meet our need. The fact that we have just enough to meet our need does not mean we are not living in the miraculous.
Sometimes we need to step back again and look at our situation from another perspective in order to see His hand. Many times our eyes are too clouded with the problems so much that we fail to see God in our situations.
Let’s take another look at Elijah’s experience, when it was a time for a new experience the brook dried up and God told him to go to a widow, another unlikely source of provision. There he knew abundance much more than he did earlier. God even created an avenue to prove Himself as the almighty.
Sometimes when things get tough, God is setting you up for the miraculous. Imagine you got pregnant the first night or first few months of your marriage, your experience could never be called miraculous. Now think about Hannah! Can you see the difference? Or imagine you never had any financial constraints and your family is growing material wise in leaps and bounds; now imagine you moved into an empty house after marriage and the next day or months that follows, the house is filled to overflowing. Can you imagine what Job and his wife went through when they lost all in one day?
And then God turned around all their losses for good, can you imagine the joy that followed?
Malachi 3:3 says: “He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver.” Like the silver smith God is holding you in the fire, not taking His eyes off you for one minute, waiting until He can see his image in your life and relationship.
Whatever they’re going through, they’ll be a better person in the end.
Hold on, surely morning will come after the Night.
– omolola ezeifeoma
Sometimes in marriage things get so bad that it seems you have lost control of your life. Things are just happening around you and you have lost track of time. Two weeks back you were planning for Christmas and all of a sudden some events take place and the last thing on your mind now is Christmas.
Let’s meet Ken. Ken got married to the love of his life after so many objections from both his parents and her parent. Neither set of parents thought the other was good enough for their child. Things take a new turn in his life after his wife got pregnant and lost about three pregnancies in quick successions. And soon after he had a minor problem with his fertility. The doctor convinced them it would only take a few months to rectify things if medications are adhered to. Months rolled by yet the story remained the same.
Mary his wife was under pressure from family and friends, every time she fell sick they began to ask questions. The pressure from her mother in-law kept building up by the day. She was confused, she could not tell anyone what the real problem was. Whenever she wanted to, she remembered she had to cover her husband.
As time passed by, the situation began to take its toll on both husband and wife, the once sweet relationship started going sour. The pressure kept building from both families. The pressure on Mary was getting unbearable for her; she now nags and gets touchy easily. She vents her frustrations at work, at home and the once sweet babe is turning into an unbearable babe. Even the charming smile Ken used to have is fast disappearing! The situation is getting out of control …
Sometimes things get really tough in a marriage! You wonder how things got so bad. You go through your wedding pictures again and again, you tell yourself it was not meant to be like this. This is never like I envisaged it would be.
I have learnt that the issues in marriage never come in expected shades. When these things happen, the last thing we need to do is panic and get soaked up in worries. The last time we said it was time to learn, today we say it is time to pray also!
In my entire walk in the Christian race nothing ever made me realize that prayer is the Master Key, like marriage. After I got married I learnt to pray more and talk less. Often times there’s nothing much we can do than to pray especially speaking from the female perspective. Prayers said in faith can change any situation no matter how difficult. God is a Faithful God who will always honour His Word.
He said ‘If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray, and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will give their sin, and will heal their land’
The restoration of Ken’s fertility is something out of control of both husband and wife, but there was something they could both have done. They could have prayed in faith to get out of the situation.
Praying might not instantly restore his fertility but it would:
- keep hope alive and hope will help them keep their joy
- heal their broken hearts
- help in building their faith together in Christ
- keep them from giving in to distractions
- Provide an avenue for them to share their burdens with one another
- Help them to discover God in a new Light together and stabilise them in their Christian Race
We need to always pray and not faint like the scripture says. As we remain in constant communication with heaven, we will receive instructions as to what steps to take. Keep in touch with heaven concerning your situation. He will come and save you in His time when all things will be Beautiful. As you continually pray, search the scripture for His promises concerning you and hang on to them.