Sometimes the wilderness is exactly where God placed you. The beauty is in the wilderness process. A place to prepare you for the promises the Lord has for you.
In this week's episode we are diving into another journey story conversation wtih Obioma Enyinnaya.
A conversation about wilderness seasons, the importance of having a genuine relationship with Christ, and more. Get ready to be inspired and encouraged!
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Isaiah 41:10 - So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Genesis 32:22-28 - That night Jacob got up and took his two wives, his two female servants and his eleven sons and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. After he had sent them across the stream, he sent over all his possessions. So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. 25 When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man.
Then the man said, “Let me go, for it is daybreak.”
But Jacob replied, “I will not let you go unless you bless me.”
The man asked him, “What is your name?
“Jacob,” he answered.
Then the man said, “Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel,[a] because you have struggled with God and with humans and have overcome.”
Prayer of Submission
Heavenly Father, I just thank you for those that are listening. I thank you for this platform where we are just coming together to truly give honor and glory to your name and to lead your people into a place where they can trust you, Lord. And I asked God of heaven and earth that even in the moments where we feel weak, we feel wary. We don't want to God that in your perfect, glorious, and awesome role, that should bring us to a place of submission, Lord. That you wrangle us into submission that you sow yourself to be Lord. Even over our emotions, even over our will God. That you know us better than we know ourselves, you know our end from our beginning, and we ask King of Kings and Lord of Lords that you showcase your stuff in our lives just as you did for Jacob, God, and you changed his name to Israel. Lord, we want to have to save victory in you, Lord. That we fight with the God of heaven and win because our hearts are affiliated with this, and He is able to change our name. Heavenly Father, do not let us go; we are your people, God. We are your people. We are your people. We are your covenant people, and we bear your name, God. Not for our sake but for the sake of your name, Lord. To be glorified in our lives. Heavenly Father, touch the hearts of every individual that is under the sound of my voice. God, I thank you, Lord, that where they feel weak, where they feel weary, where they feel lacking God that you fill them up more to overflow.
I thank you, Lord, that if they have been straying from you, that you bring them back to a place of intimacy. God, I ask Holy Spirit that you prick their hearts in the deepest parts. And I thank you for the goodness of conviction, for the mercy, for the grace that has conviction. And I thank you, Lord, for the righteousness, that is you, God. That you are the God that separates our sins as far as the east is from the west and you are the cleansing fire, you are the redeeming fire, you're the holy fire. And we ask that you impart that same grace in our lives in Jesus's name. Amen.
Get Caught Up with Episode 11: Journey of Faith Story with Shirley X. Moore
Journey Story w/Obioma Enyinnaya - Transcription
Shekinah: Welcome to this week's episode of the Truths and Promises podcast. Today, we have another journey of faith story to share with you all. And I'm looking forward to diving into today's conversation with an old college friend of mine, Obioma.
So Obi, go ahead and introduce yourself. Let the people know who you are, where you are, where you're from, what you're doing, and whatever else you want to share.
Obioma: Amen!. So excited to be here. Thank you, Shekinah. Hi everyone. My name is Obioma Enyinnaya. Enyinnaya is my married name. I am a daughter of the most high first and foremost. I'm trying to be intentional about introducing myself with what my primary identity is.
As opposed to like the relationships I have with things that I'm doing, but I'm also married. I've been married to my husband traditionally in the Nigerian culture since 2019, and then we did our what we call white wedding/American wedding in 2020. And then we welcomed a son in 2021 who is also named Obioma, I'm Obioma, and our son's name is Obioma. And
Shekinah: I love it.
Obioma: Right. We just like to confuse people. It keeps it exciting. And I currently live in Orlando. I've been living in Orlando since Shekinah and I both went to UCF. I did my master's at Rollins. I have my MBA, and right now, I'm in the lovely intersection of healthcare, tech, and finance. And I work at a FinTech company doing analysis, providing solutions to our clients, basically acting as an internal consultant so that I can equip them with what our software is meant to do. So that's my like marketplace job. And then I'm also a licensed minister within the church of God.
And I am the administrative pastor for a congregation that's kind of close to UCF about a mile down the street, and we are our, my church's name is New Life Church of God, and we have a mission to just train, equip and release leaders, both in the ministry and in the marketplace. And that's been a really exciting endeavor.
And then on top of that, I founded an organization called Bibles Plus Brunch, based on just a vision to see women walk in their God-given purpose without hindrances or without preconceptions, and truly know the full measure of who God is and what God can do in them and through them and to create lasting impacts for their generations.
I am a prophet of the Lord. The Lord speaks to me, and I speak what he says, and I am walking in that call and understanding what that means every day. I am an author. I wrote a journal to help people understand, hear the voice of God and activate it in their lives. I am a confidant, I'm a friend, I'm a daughter, and the list goes on and on, but that's just a little bit about me.
I think that's a pretty full picture of all these, at least at this moment.
Shekinah: I love it, and I love how you start with who you are as a daughter of the most high, you know, even when I think about asking the question of having people introduce themselves, I think a lot of times we go to, what do you do? Where are you from? And then, like, you know, we think that defines who we are, but really being very clear and intentional about who you are is a very beautiful thing.
So I love that. No. If you all don't know, the premise behind these journey of faith stories is to have real conversations about our journeys and God's glory about his faithfulness and about his never-ending love. During these talks, I invite guests to share whatever God has placed on their hearts in this season.
As long as it encourages us to walk by faith, lives in victory, and then above all else, in line with the 1140 stores. Obeying God. So I like to start these conversations by asking what's one of your favorite truths or promises that we can find in the scripture and where can we find it.
Obioma: Absolutely. Great question.
Before I dive in, so I did want to take just a moment to just honor you for having me on and just sharing with the listeners, but specifically with you that I do not take it lightly. It's definitely humbling, and specifically because their invitation came from you. I think, you know, people that don't know Shekinah, don't kind of know-how great she is, but people that do know Shekinah, like, does Shekinah know how great she is? So...
Shekinah: I'm a little low-key about it.
Obioma: You're definitely one of those people that even in like our college experience, I was always in awe of you and you know, you are an inspiration in every sense of the word and just being a Black woman and specifically for me, and this is not, the Lord knows my heart and saying the statement, I think you were like my first, like, parlay into seeing another Black woman who was just as smart as me, just as driven as me and truly liked just astounding in everything she did.
You are a picture of excellence, and it's been exciting, and you know, humbling, awe-inspiring, just kind of watching your journey. And it wasn't just that you were good at everything you did, but you were. You had gotten everything you did. And I think even in college, it spoke volumes, that favor was visible, it was tangible.
You were never ordinary, so to invite me on your platform means a lot. And I just wanted you to know, acknowledge that and honor you in that capacity because you're definitely a trailblazer, and you're one who is greatly admired specifically by myself.
Shekinah: Thank you, Obi, that means a lot. I remember also watching you a lot in college and seeing everything you were doing and are still doing. And it really is. I love that. How you say that awe-inspiring. It really is that, so I that's reciprocated, and I know that's just the Holy Spirit living in existing on the inside of both of us that recognizes that. Yeah.
Obioma: So going back to the question, I hand right? What does my favorite truth and promise in scripture? I would definitely say it's Isaiah 41:10.
And I'm going to actually pull it up so I can read it verbatim because I, this was the scripture, the Lord gave me in college. I had been raised in a Christian family, so my mother, like she lived and breathed the Holy Spirit and she was a praying woman, and my background was always faith, but I wanted to rebel. The enemy introduced distraction and hurts.
And in those spaces, I gave space for the enemy to have his way. And so in college it really became, I, I truly believe, you know, the war in the heavenlies was on for my, my purpose and my destiny and the enemy several times thought he had me. And I'm not sure how much of this you know, people know, because, although it's my testimony or it's a part of my testimony, I'm not as liberal in sharing it, not because of shame, but because it just is not where I am. So it doesn't, it doesn't feel real anymore, but it was super real. And in college, I was in a very abusive relationship. It was physically abusive; it was emotionally abusive. It was mentally abusive. It was all the abuses. And after literally by the grace of God, being able to leave that relationship, with helicopters called and police-involved and all of that. I need it to cling to something to know that, you know, God, you did not leave me. You did not forsake me. You are with me even in this moment.
And the scripture that the Lord gave to me was Isaiah 41:10. And for probably two to three years, I would, I had it written on this piece of paper, and I had the paper posted on my college apartment room that actually used to live with him in, and I would read it to myself in situations where I felt like overwhelmed, and Isaiah 41 says, "fear not for, I am with the, do not be dismayed for, I am your God. I will strengthen you. Yes, I will help you. And I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." And so I will just repeat it to myself because I knew it was God speaking to me. And I knew it was God reminding me that I should not live in fear and fear of failure and fear that this was really all that life had and fear that I wouldn't amount to something beyond this. And the fear of not finding quote-unquote love again, just fear in different capacities. But also that He would strengthen me cause I had never felt so empty, so weak, so lonely, so lacking in my life. I no longer had my own self-confidence. I think that relationship that a really great job of just breaking that down.
I couldn't even like, you know, rely on school because I didn't do like, as well as I was used to doing so it wasn't something I could say, well, at least like, you know, I'm smart or, and just physically, I was the smallest I'd ever been in my life. I was like 110 pounds and looked sick; I looked physically sick.
I didn't even have my physical appearance to rely on. So it had to be God strengthening me. It had to be God equipping me. It had to be God upholding me, and it had to be God reminding me like I am with you. This is not the end of your story. That is, I would say that's one of my favorite verses, a verse that has been instrumental in my life thus far.
Yeah. So how would you say that the 1140 story resonated with you through this season? Like how did you find yourself standing on the Word of God? And for those who aren't too familiar with the 1140 story. I try to start each episode with an introduction, but essentially it's the journey of the Israelites from Egypt into their promised land.
And while they were in the wilderness, it should have taken them about 11 days to make it to that promised land that God had for them, that he had promised their forefathers, but it actually took them 40 years because they were going through cycles of complaining and murmuring, of disbelief and just forgetting who God was and what God had already brought them through.
And that sort of kept them in this cycle of the wilderness. So would you say that you relate to that story in any way as you were going through what really does sound like a wilderness season of that longing, and that lacking in that hunger and just really trying to refine your self-confidence and your peace in God.
Obioma: A thousand percent. Yes. But I think so sometimes the way we teach the wilderness season, I think, is lacking because, we almost talk about it as, you know, like this place that we need to escape from so we can get to the promise, right? When I truly believe that the beauty of the wilderness was the process. And there's a process that God requires to the promise. And ultimately, the glory is in the wilderness. The glory is not in the promise, and the glory of God was so displayed when the children of Israel were in that desert place. That's when they saw, you know, a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. That's why when they saw the thunder in the sky and Sinai light up with the magnificence of God, that's when Moses was able to have his, the goodness of God pass by him.
Those were the moments where God and Moses talked face to face in the tent of meeting. Like it was the wilderness that truly set a precedence for what we know as modern, you know, quote-unquote Christianity. In dwelling and living Holy Spirit and Christ, right. And the tabernacle that we are. And so the wilderness to me is, as painful as that season is, I don't want to gloss over it and say, you know like This terrible thing happened and I got in the wilderness, but then got up in the promise because I think there are still parts of me that are in that wilderness because the wilderness is a processing place, right?
It's a place where God prepares you to receive what he has for you and for the children of Israel, the wilderness was where he has to kill an old mindset, and he had to kill the slavery that Egypt and the desire for the other things that was not like him. And while the journey in the natural should have taken 11 days, because I know that the sovereignty of God is just that, right. He knew it was going to take 40 years and take 40 years because he knew there was a generation that truly was not ready to let go of what was and embrace what will be. The goodness of God is the fact that he always gives us a choice. And so, even in his knowledge of the fact that it will take them longer, you still allow them to have the choice and to be able to embrace the quickest route possible; of course, they didn't. And so I think that's my that's where I really, really relate to that story because of my issue with God. It's a weird way to say it, but I like timing. Like my thing is timing and, you know, since I was a wee babe, I just feel like I've always been able to control the timing of things.
Obviously, I'm not in control, but I would have an awareness of like, this would happen here, and this would happen here, and this would happen here, and God is teaching me like, the sun and the moon obey me like time obeys me. Like I, at the appointed time, I, the Lord, will make it happen. I, the Lord, will establish the thing.
Right. And so, part of my wilderness season is truly learning that lesson over and over again. Even when I feel like I've arrived at the place of understanding that there's a new mountain, there's a new experience, there's a new revelation. And so, my testimony or when I should earlier about, you know, just being in that abuse, coming out of that abuse, I can, that's just the beginning of this journey that I'm still on.
And I think it was the beginning because it was a surrender at that point. Okay. God, I know that you have something greater for me. I'm going to believe you and allow you to part the red sea and then cross over, and I'm going to not wander through this place with you. And then over this last, you know, seven, eight years, it's been a deconstruction.
It's been, you know, showing me who I really am in Christ. What mindsets do I hold on to what parts of my childhood inform my person? What things I'm trying to achieve because of voids that I have in me. And the goodness of God is just like the children of Israel. He's shown me what he desires for my life to look like.
Right. He showed me the promised land. He's shown me that He'll take me to the nations and that he will have me speak the gospel to millions of people and that they will come into the knowledge of Jesus Christ through my obedience. He's shown me that my life will be a sign and a wonder, my marriage would be a sign and wonder, my ministry would be a sign and a wonder that his glory will follow me, that I'll perform signs and wonders and miracles, that I will lay him and there'll be raised up. So He's been faithful and good enough to give me the promise and truly say, these are the plans I have for you, but, the goodness, the true goodness of God is not allowing to come into that place until I've been prepared and processed in a place where I can handle the glory.
Right. And so I think there's part of me that's still there. There are parts of me that are still there. There are parts of me that are still being delivered. And I know we never arrive. That's not what I'm trying to speak to, but I think there's a realization that even when they entered the promised land because of the failure of the generation to learn the complete lesson, right. They still entered into idolatry. And so, they couldn't maintain the fullness of the promise that God has for them. Right. They still married off their sons and daughters to the Canaanites and the Jebusites. They still did what God told them not to do to do
Shekinah: They were still disobedient, like deeply ingrained within them.
Yeah, I know. I oftentimes, and I think when I first started 1140, that was something I shouted about a lot, was like, we're going to get through the wilderness to the promised land. And then the more I studied the promised land, I'm like, that's not a perfect place like there is nothing about the only part of God's glory that is perfect is our inheritance in heaven.
That's the end, right? That's a real promised land that we are looking for these days because that natural promised land is full of wars and battles and having kings you don't need, and marrying folks you're not supposed to be marrying and idolatry and all of the things that they went through. So I'd say I definitely identify with that as not being definitely not being the sort of final destination of how we think about things.
I love that.
Obioma: And I love the fact that you know, you've just been intentional about spreading that message. But yeah. Going back to your, to, I think it's just a natural, it's a journey that we all on. Right. We go through the wilderness, but there's processing in it. And then God is good enough to show us the promise of the other side of it, but our full inheritance, absolutely, like you stated, is in the heavenly realms.
Shekinah: Yeah. So when would you say that God showed you this promised land? Like when did you get a glimpse of that?
Obioma: In my bathroom in my college apartment after my ex moved out, you know, cried out to God, and I would have morning devotion. And I would write in my notebook that was maybe like a, like a wide rule, notebook, and God would just have me write things down as he will drop them in my spirit. And I'd be like, oh yeah, I don't know about this, but I'll write it down anyway. And I would just, I would just write, I would write what God spoke to my spirit. I would write what I felt like God was saying. And, you know, as time progressed, I realized now that that was him showcasing the promise to me to keep me hopeful.
Because there are several times I want it to be like, well, forget this. Living for Jesus is not fun.
Shekinah: It's not all that glamorous, all the time, because you do have those wilderness seasons that you don't just go through it one time, and you're through it. There are different parts of your life where you experience that processing. And I like how you say for you a lot of times it was around timing and still is around the timing of how you have to go through this wilderness season.
I even think about Jesus. Jesus had a wilderness season, and I like to talk about how his 40 days is what, you know, began the redemption for us. And yeah, I think we all have to go through wilderness seasons at multiple periods in our lives. It's not something you overcome once, and you're through it.
So would you say that you're living in a promised land, in any aspect of your life?
Obioma: Oh, absolutely. I think for sure, just my marriage, my child, is a promised land. I think the place I am in my faith where people will admire my walk with God is a promised land. Because I was such a terrible example or be like, oh my gosh, I admire your relationship with God or just people to testify because of my obedience is absolutely a promised land. So I think there are several parts of my life where it's beaming, and it's teaming with glory. And it's all been God. And it's been a journey, but you know, I wouldn't have been ready for my, I always thought I'd get married at like 21, 22, but then I'm laughing at myself because I'm like, I would not have been a good wife to no 21/22.
Obioma: Listen, barely now. So I can only imagine 21, 22, I would not have a good mother at 21. So I need to, And yeah. Now I'm in a place where I'm like, I can appreciate marriage for the fullness of what it is, the good, the bad that in the out. I can love my husband, not from a place of, you know, an expectation to fulfill my needs, but from like a holy love that says, I'm here to serve you and not necessarily for you to serve me.
I can love my child from a place of, you know, what does God, what did God allow you to be born through this lineage to accomplish? Not, you know, look at this person that's been entrusted to me and let me obsess over him.
Shekinah: And that's easy to do with the baby.
Obioma: Let me tell you. I am in love with my son. I am in love with my son, but it's all, it's good. It's beautiful. It's a healthy love. It's like, you're my son, but you're God's son first. And so how do I continuously keep that a top of mind as much as I want to like, and that's all, honestly, has been still free as a parent, just talking to other parents is the understanding like before this child was mine, he was your's God, you know the plans that you have him plants to prosecute him and not to harm him, to give him hope and a future. So how do I partner with you, God, to make sure that our kid is the best kid for the kingdom of God, and that's liberated me.
Shekinah: Yeah, no, that's powerful. I, I, I would say as a child, I experienced that from my parents a lot, as well as you know, my dad would often say, you know, oftentimes when I would get in trouble, it would always start out with, you know, I've got to do this because God gave you to me, to protect you, and to teach you.
And that really is how it works by God entrusts us to our parents and our children, to us, and it really is a very amazing and beautiful thing to think about. And I've watched my parents through the years through all of the ac