Hello people, I am happy to share with you my very first #thoughtivityopinion piece for 2018. Last year I started a series on Tithes and A Church that is losing its way, but I could only do one edition before the year ended (You can read it here.). Thankfully I am back to continue the series this year and therefore I present to you the second piece in the series
There is a pastor who lives in my area who is a friend of my Dad. Whenever they meet at their regular Landlords Association meeting, this Pastor always makes it a point of duty to remind my dad (who is a Professor of English at the Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife) that one day he would become Vice-Chancellor of OAU. Unfortunately “Prof.”, as he is known as, is an old style “risk averse slacker” who has precisely zero ambition of becoming Vice Chancellor of OAU (or any other University for that matter). It has become a running joke in the house about why “God” keeps telling this pastor about a blessing over and over without bothering to mention it even in passing to the owner of said blessing first. It is by no means an isolated case. Go to any church today, you will find shepherds constantly reminding members of their flock to “go out and conquer for Christ”. This is not a bad thing in itself, after all it was Jesus Christ himself who commanded Christians to “go into the world and make disciples of all men…” However what happens when that instruction is excessively applied is that, as I mentioned in this piece I wrote some time ago about contentment,it fills the church’s coffers, but it creates a bunch of unhappy, dissatisfied, excessively ambitious, hustler Christians who feel they need to compete with “the people in the world” in order to make sure that “the earth belongs only to God?” How much is anyone willing to bet that a Christian who has been repeatedly told that everything in the world belongs to him, because his father owns everything will soon start to see, for instance, a Muslim colleague who is competing for a promotion to the same office as an agent of the devil who must be put down by any means possible?
My father, as a matter of principle, is a laid back, easygoing, family man who likes nothing better than to be able to after, a hard day’s work, fall asleep immediately his head hits the pillow. He does not mince words about his belief that he cannot cope with the stress of an elective position especially in warped society like Nigeria (which is why he avoids politics as much as he can). In his own case even if a pastor somersaults and bashes his head on the wall to convince him that God has “prepared a blessing” of an elected position for him, said pastor will not get anything more than a smile and a “thank you very much, may God bless you” out of him. However, how many people, against their own better judgement, have believed the word of pastors who told them that God was preparing them for a particular position, and then when they get to that position, they find that they cannot cope with the stress and the dishonesty, and it destroys their lives and their family and rubbishes everything they stand for? Of course the pastor would have moved on by this point, and will already be using “I told X that he will become Y and it happened ” as a testimony to wow the rest of his congregation, while the hapless X is wallowing in the mess that the decision has made of his life alone, and suffering in silence. And we haven’t gotten to that part where the pastor begins to remind X who has gotten to Y position that he now owes him (the pastor) and the church one, because it was he who “God used” to tell him(X) that he would get to Y position in the first place. We have all seen it before. Case in point is the example of Dino Melaye who, when there was an effort by members of his senatorial district to recall him from the senate, arrogantly declared that it was God that put him in the Senate and nobody but God can remove him from that Senate seat, in other words every single person who queued under the sun and in the rain to vote for him can go fuck themselves. Who is willing to bet that it is a “ pastor” who keeps assuring him that God is with him? That is the reality we find ourselves in a reality where “men of God constantly encourage both rich and poor alike to undermine the laws of their country. The question is this, so what is the point of the things these men of God are “doing for the poor citizens of the country” when they are the same set of people encouraging the leaders of those poor citizens not to care about their wishes?
TO BE CONTINUED…