OF THE ADEBOGUNS
© Reverend Olukayode Adenola Adebogun
All rights reserved.
Printed in Regina, SK Canada by National Print-It Centres.
First Edition 1998
Second edition (revised with additional pages), 2002
Design & typography by Marlene Solberg, Regina, SK Canada
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Anglican Church Of Canada
Diocese of QU'APPELLE
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Effort has been made to acknowledge all materials quoted from
other sources. If there are any that are not correctly quoted or have
been omitted, the author will appreciate your contribution so that
they will be properly acknowledged in any future editions.
Foreword to the First Editionvii
By Venerable Tope Adewunmi
St Andrews Anglican Church, Ipaja, Lagos, Nigeria
Foreword to the Second Editionviii
By Rt. Rev (Dr) Duncan Wallace
Anglican Church Of Canada, Diocese of Qu'appelle, Regina, SK, Canada
Hindrances to Spiritual Stocktaking
Help for Spiritual Stocktaking
A Charge to Leaders
Failure to Take Stock
Stocktaking is an integral part of every business or
investment. Stocktaking is examining and making a
list of goods in the store. It is essential for growth and
development. It enables you to look back and use
your finding to estimate your present position. This
can also help you to focus on the future.
A number of believers do not have time to look back
and make plans for the future. Will this not affect your
growth, the church, and your ministry? If yes, how do
you go about stocktaking? These and other questions
are answered in this book.
It is an amplification of a message preached by the
author on December 28, 1997 at St. Paulís Anglican
Church, Ajara-Agamathen, Badagry during Holy
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; Prove
your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how
that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
(2 Corinthians 13:5 KJV)
Stocktaking is a call to remembrance. It is self examination.
It is looking critically into oneís spiritual
life. It is an appraisal of the past. It involves evaluating
oneís failure and success. Our work with God is on
a continuous basis. The original intention of God is
that we will live like Him and be perfect. Sin broke the
relationship, therefore man began to live and reason
humanly rather than divinely. Redemption is certain
through the blood of Jesus and we can therefore attain
the lost position through Him. On a daily basis we are
still in a struggle with the flesh, which is our human
nature even though a new Spirit is in us.
For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit
against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the
other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.
(Galatians 5:17 KJV)
In our walk with Him, there is the possibility of distraction.
The devil may use our human nature, even
use the counsel of fellow believers. This calls for care.
In the Scripture Jesusí attention was being distracted
from the central goal but because of his sensitivity
and closeness to the Father, He was able to refute the
plan of the enemy. Even if Jesus had given his consent
at that moment, during one of His retreats with the
Father, He would have examined Himself and called
Himself back to the formal vision.
Spiritual stocktaking is a call to the original vision,
a call to the first love. Many who would have made it
in spiritual things, those who would have been great
in the Lord, are still at the bottom of the ladder
because when God began with them, they were a spiritual
machine working without time for refueling. No
doubt they have made a shipwreck of their faith.
Spiritual stocktaking is an essential part of your
walk with God. There is a need for you, on a regular
basis, to ask yourself from where did you start? Where
are you going? Where are you now? These are the
questions the church in Ephesus did not ask
(Revelation 2:1Ė7). It has been recorded that the
Church started very well with great readiness to work
and labor for the gospel. They had great patience,
not ready to put up with those which are evil. They
were against compromise. The Church preached the
Word with all fervency of heart. They tried those who
called themselves apostles but were found to be liars.
Along the way, probably because of pressure, over confidence,
negligence, or other vices, they lost the
vision. They were no longer doing the work as expected.
They were not faithful and they had no time for
spiritual stocktaking. Maybe they thought they were
still doing fine in the Lord. But God spoke in verse 4:
"Nevertheless, I have somewhat against thee, because
thou hast left thy first love." He therefore called them
to spiritual stocktaking in verse 5.
Spiritual stocktaking will involve remembering
from where you have fallen and repenting. It will
involve doing your first work and going back to the
Today, ministries and individuals who started very
well are ending badly. Many who used to preach
powerful messages with the leading of the Holy Spirit
are now preaching dead sermons to dead people.
Many started with the message of holiness but are
now focusing their attention on the message of prosperity.
Thetoo-busy syndrome has eaten into some people
to the extent that they have no time to look back on
or reflect on the present life. Many denominations and
churches that have the fire of evangelism and revival
in their bones are now busy serving the table. Many
have lost their vision. The end-time waves and syndromes
have taken over many. Many who valued
Godís call at the beginning of their lives are now busy
running after certificates and degrees to the detriment
of the call of God upon their lives. If we must go back
to our first love, if we must affect this generation, we
must have spiritual stocktaking. We need great targets
to be able to do great exploits for God. It is not the will
of God that any of His children should look back.
Many who are going back, are falling from grace to
grass. They are doing so because they have no time for
spiritual stocktaking. They are already burnt out.
Think about your way of life. Maybe what is happen-
ing to you is as a result of neglect of spiritual stocktaking.
Remember that in Acts 6:1Ė7 all the apostles have
been serving the table until the twelve called the multitude
of the disciples and said "it is not reasonable that
we should leave the word of God and serve tables."
They were able to retrace their steps, knowing
where they had missed the target. Verse 4 made a
great change in their ministry and life.
"But we will give ourselves continually to prayer,
and to the ministry of the word" (Acts 4:6). Because
they took the right step, there was great harvest.
And the word of God increased; and the number of the
disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great
company of the priests were obedient to the faith. (Acts
If only we will call for a retreat and examine ourselves
afresh, a great number of people will come to know
the Lord and become disciples in this nation and great
numbers of our persecutors will become obedient to
the faith which they once persecuted.
What do you have left in your store? Go back now
and take stock.
Many of our friends and brethren who ran the race
well some years back have turned themselves into
Gehazis and Balaams who, because of the love of silver
and gold, forsook the straight path of the Lord.
The Pentecostal message has become the message of
thingsand the acquisition of the feeble and transient
things of this age.
Righteous living and brokenness in the presence of
the Lord is in retreat in the assembly of the saints, and
finding a company of saints walking in the admonition
and ways of the Lord is rare. It is now scandalous
for members of anew-wave ministry led by trendy
preachers to even contemplate being different and
separate from the ways of the world. They must be
modern and use the graces and blessings of God to
satisfy their carnal desires while proclaiming themselves
as the heirs of the throne of God or army of
God. All this is happening because most of them have
no time for spiritual stocktaking.
There is no substitute for spiritual stocktaking.
Remember the words of John R. W. Stott:
How odd it is to be an unconverted preacher of an
unevangelised evangelist (or a backsliding preacher).
It is like the blind leading the blind, a blind man
claiming to be a professor of optics, when he himself
is absolutely in the dark!
It is like a deaf man claiming to be a professor of
music, demonstrating symphonies and harmonies.
Moles professing over eaglets. A fool rushing where
angels tremble to trek.
Dare to be different. God has called you to remain in
constant fellowship with Him. He is willing to keep
you, if you continue to keep in touch with Him. To be
sure you are always in good relationship with Him, to
be sure He is happy with you, take stock of your life.
Put yourself under the x-ray of God. Reflect on your
past and plan to move to higher heights in Him. This
is spiritual stocktaking.
Spiritual Stocktaking ....................................................
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