Tag Archives: God

Faith that works

 

My friends say I don’t believe in destiny. It’s not like I don’t believe in it but the thing is, I have always believed that if you want something, you’d better go and get it as it will not jump into your lap. Who we are today is formed by our environment, our circumstances and the experiences that we go through and if you have lived my life or better still, gone through my experiences with me, you might understand why I can be cynical at times.

Don’t get it wrong. I believe in faith. You know, in 2008, I attended Bible School (I know, I know, it’s unbelievable. Even I don’t believe it myself sometimes, especially when certain lewd thoughts enter my head), Word of Faith Bible Institute.  I graduated with a distinction but there was a course that so worried my pastor that he had to call me into his office for a chat. As you can guess, that course was ‘Faith’. It was the only course I had a C. The rest were A’s, except Faith. I even passed Prayer.

Me? If a prayer is more than 15 minutes, my dear, you can be sure I am most likely thinking of something else. And I don’t pray in crowds. I just can’t shut out what the other people are saying. You know how Pentecostals like to shout as if the messenger angel is hard of hearing. So by the time, prayers are over, your ears are ringing like you stood near a cathedral communion bell. Suffice to say, the best place for me to pray still remains, a quiet place where I am all alone.

So my pastor called me and asked to talk to me. Didn’t I believe in faith? Was my faith level low? What was my relationship with my Lord and Savior? Did I doubt things because they were not being manifested in the physical (which is a nice way of asking if I am a doubting Thomas)? Did I need extra lessons? How could he help me? Plenty questions. Some I had answers to and some I preferred to remain mute because I simply didn’t have answers and there was no reason why I didn’t have answers.

I do believe in faith. A lot. But Faith has been so bastardized that its hard to understand it anymore. Now, I’ve learned to be practical. If the skies are grey, most likely, its gonna rain. So take an umbrella or a raincoat (Do people still wear that sef)? If you missed your period and you have been sexually active, you are most likely pregnant, so congrats. Safe delivery. If you haven’t read all year and its 30 minutes to the exam, you are most likely going to fail, so start saving for the next year’s school fees. Yes, there is nothing that prayer cannot solve but please let’s exercise a bit of restraint and take responsibility for our actions. I don’t understand what faith has got to do with certain issues, honestly. It is just so ridiculous sometimes.  

Back to the destiny thing, If what will be will be, then why struggle for success at all? Oya, let’s all get naked and go dancing in the rain and hope that at the end of the year, we would all be successful, famous and stinkingly rich. Let’s all fold our hands and not work but hope and fast and pray that manna will fall from heaven like it did in the old testament (meanwhile, God fit just vex and it go happen o. It go be like ‘feem’).

Be honest. ‘No food for lazy man’. We all see that at the back of lorries and trailers, especially the old, rickety ones that look like they are about to fall on the nearest vehicle (and sometimes, sadly, they actually do). Forget the old lorry, remember the message. Because that’s the koko these days. Even yahoo boys gats to hustle. Sometimes they don’t even bathe for weeks, or brush their teeth but camp out at hidden cyber cafes or in their homes ‘yahoo-ing’ away. Trust me, I would know. I’m a Bini girl, we practically invented yahoo-yahoo (but don’t quote me anywhere).

I believe in practical faith. Yeah, I think I can safely call it that. Faith that actually makes sense. Not the type that the big man upstairs listens to in stunned silence and then erupts into laughter at the level of silliness. Practical faith works. At least for me. It is a rocking combination of realism, practicality and faith. Make what you will out of it, but that is what works for me. That being said, one thing I’m beginning to believe more and more is that the lines just fall into the right places at the right time if you are taking the right steps. Confused? Bear with me for a while.

I am happy where I am right now. I feel like I’m where I’m supposed to be. I might have taken my own sweet time getting here but I kinda feel this is a place I really should have been. Will I remain here? I honestly do not know. All I know is that it’s a journey. Last week, one of my ex-boyfriends proposed to me. As in, the serious stuff. And the truth is, If he hadn’t broken my heart (whatever was left of it anyway), looking at him now, I would never have been happy with him. Hindsight is so much more truthful. There are some journeys that teach us lessons and are meant to guide us. There are some that are just a waste of energy and time. Some experiences teach us, guide us, give us a map and help us re-assess our journey and some are just breathers – meant to distract us for a while. I believe people will end up where they are meant to be as long as they don’t stop moving in the right direction.

I don’t have all the answers. I may not even be making much sense (I knew I sucked at writing, but the wise ones said to never give up, right?). But one answer I do have is, with a bit of time and luck (I don’t believe in luck. The damn thing has never worked for me. Now, Grace loves me. That I believe in), everything will work out in the end. If its not okay, then its not the end. Now, that is Faith that works. How the heck did I ever get a C?

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If wishes were horses…

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I’m so sorry, Ai.

They say, ‘To live in the hearts of those you love is not to die’. I have never really liked that saying. I still don’t. I don’t know why. I don’t want to lose anyone. I don’t want them to live in my heart. I want them to live in the physical world where I can touch them, love them, argue with them and hold them. But again they say, ‘If wishes were horses, beggars would ride’. I would not give up the memories of my loved ones for anything in the world.

I remember the first day I met Aisha Suleiman. She had breezed into Bundle of Joy Pre-School like she owned it. I say breezed because that was how she rolled. Her confidence was out of this world. For such a slim woman, it seemed like she could power the entire Southern part of Nigeria which is notorious for its epileptic/non-existent power supply. She wanted to enroll her son, Ayomide in my daycare facility. From the first moment I met her, I was fascinated by the strength and self assuredness that oozed from her. She spoke with the ‘britico’ accent of someone who had spent years abroad. I wanted her son in my facility but I wasn’t exactly sure of his seemingly ‘Stone-cold, Steve Austin’ mother. She looked like trouble.

The next time I saw Patricia, my gist partner, I told her about the ‘troublemaker londoner lady with her nonsense british or whatever accent she dey form’. How would I have known that she would become such a huge impact in my life?  She did enroll her son and also basically enrolled me into her life. I remember how she used to come spend hours with me in the office, taking care of the kids, complaining about our family, bitching about life and browsing boohoo.com. She would browse and select what she wanted, pay her brother and ask him to send it to Nigeria for her. I remember when her customers would not pay her, she would complain to me and I would think of some ‘egbe-wager’ way to get the money back, most of it theoretical. Most of it I concocted so outlandishly just to make her smile and laugh. She had the greatest laugh in the world. She laughed without holding anything back, with her whole heart. Unlike me, I have mastered the art of laughing while thinking a dozen worrying and unpleasant thoughts. I loved her laugh. I loved her. I love her.

I remember her teasing that I might as well employ her as she basically came to the office everyday and spent hours there. All the kids knew her and loved her. The Parents got used to her as well and basically regarded her as a member of staff and were always shocked when She was introduced as a parent. Parents loved to come to the office to unwind and relax and gist with other parents. She started that.

I remember the day I visited her at the Hospital when she had a crisis. She had yelled on me for not coming to visit her earlier but quickly quieted down when I told her I was spending the entire day with her. That was the day I wrote ‘Taking back my Spiritual Leadership’. Aisha was a handful. She was like a steam roller, whatever that is. But her heart was so big! She was the perfect definition of ‘tough as nails on the outside, soft as a jelly on the inside’. My number one supporter and fan! My personal cheerleader!

Ayo was everything to her. Her pride and joy. Together, we made choices for him. What school he would attend, how she would raise money for his fees, and the best form of discipline for a first child. That was Aisha. She shared her life and could so easily include herself in your pain and trouble.

When I had to change cities, all she asked was, ‘what’s the plan’? She did not offer unsolicited advice, all she did was give me a shoulder to lean on, to support me and to remind me of what I wanted whenever I forgot. She was the one person who did not judge me or my choices.

Lagos! Now this thought has got me smiling ruefully. ‘Eseosa! Na so you be? Na Lagos make you change like this? If na abroad you come go nko? Person no ever see or hear from you again. My friend, you better change!’ I would yell right back and burst into laughter, promising that I would change and would keep in touch more. It happened once, twice, thrice,……..and it went on like this for 2 years.

2014. I knew she hadn’t called me in a while. It hit me one day at work. Aisha hadn’t called me in a while to yell at me for not keeping in touch. I made a mental note to call her before she called me. That was it. I made a mental note. A mental note.

2 days ago, I checked my bbm messages after a week. My boyfriend and I were fighting again for the gazillionth time and going through a phase that I had promised myself that I would not go through again. I had just moved into a new house and I was still trying to adjust and get ready for the life of traffic that it seemed was now my portion. I was broke. Water had stopped running and I was thinking of how to put a banana peel on the ground for my miserly new landlord and his bighead. My colleagues would not stop calling me that I made them come to work on a public holiday. Water poured on my laptop. I was tired of it all. As if these truly mattered! So I checked my bbm messages which I remember to do maybe once a week. As usual, there was a lot of broadcast messages which is what you get when you have about 500 contacts. I don’t even know what I am doing with 500 contacts. I started ending chats when I saw Hassan’s broadcast message from a while ago ‘We are now live at the wedding reception of Kate and Hussein…’ and a personal message that stated the website of the couple. Hassan was her younger brother and Hussein’s twin.

Curious and elated, I opened his dp. Aisha’s picture was his dp with the inscription, ‘RIP Sis’. Immediately I was irritated at people who would put people’s pic up with funny messages that they had forgotten to change form the last pic they put up. Immediately I pinged her to discuss the wedding. It bounced back. I called and her numbers were switched off. I started feeling a little afraid. I checked on Facebook but there was nothing. I heaved a sigh of relief but the little shadow of fear would not go away. I managed to ignore it for about 20 minutes but I couldn’t anymore and so pinged Hassan. It took a little while to respond but when he did, it wasn’t with good news. Aisha had died on April 1.

After the tears and sobs have dried off, all I feel is guilt. What is the meaning of a mental note? Why didn’t I just pick up the phone to call? Why? Would it have taken anything away from me? What was I so busy doing? She constantly checked up on me; made sure I was okay. Why couldn’t I have been a better friend? Why couldn’t I just call? I remember other friends who have blessed my life in so many ways that I do not keep in touch with. I am friendly enough to meet new people but keeping in touch seems like such a big deal to me and I don’t get it.

Chigozie and Joseph Efienokwu and their entire family have known me all my life and been there for me through it all. Heck, I literally planned Bundle of Joy with them. Adesuwa Dinyo, I have known since primary School and I would not be the dubious ‘fashion-conscious’ girl I am now, if not for her. Osayi Edosomwan loves me though I really don’t know why and constantly defends me and is one of the most loyal friends I have and I missed her wedding and the birth of her first child. What is wrong with me? No man has ever shown me the kind of love that IK Elaiho has showed me since I was in Js 1. Joy Akpomeza who taught me how to love giving. They are so many. Sandra Ikuli, Eyitemi, Deborah, Jessie, Imade Owie, Omosigho Ogbebor, Blessing, Eseosa, Timi Febabor, Patricia and the list goes on. I cannot remember the last day that I talked to any of these wonderful people. I am just too busy. And I was too busy to call Aisha.

I haven’t felt this much pain in a long while. I prayed I wouldn’t feel it for a long time. I thought I had seen it all but somehow I feel so small and so humble. I don’t want memories or want her in my heart. I just want her back.

Ai, I’m so sorry.

The Insanity of Resolutions

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When we think of a new year, usually we think of new year resolutions and how we can achieve them this time, at least for me. I have always had new year resolutions but the thing is, I really cannot say if I achieve them or not. If I achieve them, I also cannot say if it was a result of my own actions or the universe helped set it up. I can tell you for free the areas in which I have abysmally failed. It’s easy-losing weight and becoming more spiritual. The point to note here is that these two areas are supremely under my control. I’m a foodie, how am I supposed to diet? Or eat small portions when my stomach is so big? I look at Jennifer Hudson and her new stick-thin figure and I think “na by force? Its not like she actually looks better sef. She looks like a shriveled fruit”. I conveniently forget that she set a goal and achieved it. Like how I was always planning to write especially towards the second quarter of last year and for one reason or the other, I didn’t. Olawale Famuyide begged,  cajoled, threatened, etc but it all came to naught. So he got tired and  started writing himself. And I had so much to share as a lot had happened to me.

But thank God for 2014. A promising year. It’s 11:12pm, Beyonce’s ‘Grown woman’ is on replay and of course, there’s no light. Generator to the rescue. Nepa has been terrible this new 2014 (those of you abroad longing to come back home have got to be kidding me). But I am determined to put my thoughts on paper. Telling myself I’ll do it on my tab hasn’t worked thus far so it’s time to try a different approach. Someone I used to know loved telling me that Insanity could be defined as doing something the same way over and over and expecting a different result. I liked that definition. Still do.

I don’t know if it’s the word ‘resolution’ that’s to blame so I’ve decided to take a different approach this new year and cure my insanity. Remove ‘resolution’ and replace with ‘goal’. Gbam! Different approach number 1. Different approach number 2 is to set realistic goals(according to the so-called life strategists that abound everywhere now). Different approach number 3 is to put it down on pen and paper or in this case, my blog. So here goes:

1. Drop to a size 12 by June which is in 6 months time. Or by Jove, maintain this my size 14 jeje. I must never reach this size 16 that it seems I am now o. Never ever. Oruko Jesu, Ise!

2. Develop a closer walk with the Big Man upstairs. Don’t worry, it’s not like we are not on speaking terms, it’s just that I’d like us to be closer. Na him be the way o #nokidding.

3. Create time for my friends and family. Osayi Edosomwan and Joy Akpomeza, I’m genuinely sorry for missing your weddings. I have no excuse and I am heartbroken. Biko, ayam still your sista o. By hook or by crook, I will be a better friend this year. I’m sorry everyone. Aisha, Onyi, Eyitemi, everyone. I love you and you are an important part of my life. But Aisha, that one no mean say you go come from South Africa emptyhanded. Same to you Chidi, I know you are on your honeymoon but bring my new year gift when you dey come back.

4. I want to laugh more and take myself less seriously this year. I don’t know what happened but 2013 became so serious. I frowned more, brooded like a monk and isolated myself for reasons I’m still trying to identify. But no more. This is the year of sunny beaches, laughter, sunshine, real friends, good wine and colourful shorts. Let the good times roll.

Oh, and by the way, I promise to ping more. I promise not to read pings after 3 days and actually reply to legit Facebook and messages, not those nonsense people that keep trying to scam me. Scam a Bini girl? How? i don’t understand. Na we start the business, just saying. Oh yes, I will tweet, whatsapp, chaton, instagram, keek, tumblr and blog. Hmmm, how I’m supposed to do all that in 24 hours with work and all I have no idea but hey, when there’s a will, there’s a way right?

For some reasons 2014 seems so exciting. It seems so promising. The buzz is contagious and it has affected me. I’ve never gotten so much buzz and thrill about a new year. May our expectations not be cut short.

Happy New Year!!!

Xoxo(sebi that’s the way oyibo people do it)

Let go and let God!

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I didn’t plan to write my first article this late into the year. Hell, it’s the second week of February. I can’t tell you how long I’ve been procrastinating about writing, but then what else is new. Y’all know I’m a lazy ass. And we like it that way right?*shines my white teeth*

It’s the season of love! Love is the greatest gift God has given us so Happy Valentine ’s Day beautiful people. Cheers to love!!! For the first time in a long while, I’m really and truly in a happy place, at peace with myself and at peace with the world. Nah, ex-boyfriends don’t apply. I have to have someone to be bitter about na. Come on! I’m not become such a good girl overnight. A measure of badness is required to be me. If not, the tattoo would have been an effort in futility.

Talking about places, I didn’t magically drop into this place. It involved a process and different phases. Sad to say, the phases were more painful than I care to remember. But mostly, the most important thing was my willingness to let things go. It involved a process of standing up, putting my affairs in order and walking out. I was reluctant about it, delayed it for as long as I could but eventually had to.

The thing about walking out is that we are usually scared of the unknown. What if the future is worse than where I am now? What if this is where I’m meant to be? What if all it takes is to try a little harder? What if things become worse if I leave? Won’t I be a quitter if I leave? What if I’m not strong enough? What if I’m not good enough? What if I fail in the next one as well?  What if no one supports me? What if this and what if that? I’ve been there and I’ve done all that. It didn’t work for me. It might work for you but somehow, things are never really very easy for me.

Last year was pretty tough. Infact I learnt the biggest lesson about letting go. I had to walk away from a life I had created for myself, a world I had built with sweat, blood and tears and leave everything I had ever known. The worst part of it all was the feeling of loneliness and failure. I felt like a big failure. I felt like I could do nothing right. I felt like I had achieved absolutely nothing. I felt like the only person in the world.

I felt like this though I stood up straight and proud in public and around people so nobody knew how I felt. I automatically smiled when people smiled at me but at night, I laid down and asked God why with tears streaming down my face. People saw a beautiful, friendly girl and all I saw was a bloody failure. From mountain of fire prayer sessions (That’s a story for another day) to being too mad at God to bother with church, I went through the whole phase but in the end, I could not deny the fact that I couldn’t go on that way.

Changes had to be made, albeit painful ones. So I boxed up everything I had known and loved, offered it up for sale, packed my bags, moved to another city and refused to even think about it. To hell with closure! What the heck is that anyway? I didn’t want to remember. I didn’t want to miss it. All questions were smartly deflected and friendships grew stale because I wasn’t willing to talk about anything concerning myself. I wanted to be left alone. Thank God for people who understood and gave me space while letting me know I had their support and love, no matter what. Above all, thank God for his grace. Grace is amazing, I tell you.

Now, its February, barely 3 months after I packed my bags feeling like a cowardly failure with my tails (I had like 3) tucked firmly between my legs in my combat shorts and I am experiencing a whole new life. Has it been easy? A piece of cake? No! It had its really bad moments. But that has not been the case for a while now. Its been really good! I’ve fallen in love (as usual), fallen out of love (as usual again), forced myself to come to terms with my bitter past, currently learning new things, experiencing a very different world, have new toasters (*tongue out to my ex-es* It can pain!), gained intimacy with my Creator and I’m not breaking stride. It is a whole new place, new feelings of contentment and happiness and I am soaking it all up. And guess what? I’m so glad I made the decision; I’m the happiest I’ve been in years.

Now what did I learn? Letting go is a brave act! Its not cowardly and its definitely not for the fainthearted. It takes tons of courage, bravery and faith. A wise person once said, ‘courage is not the absence of fear but the ability to go on inspite of it’. The ability to go on inspite of the fear, insecurity and doubt is the greatest courage of all. Stop trying to mend fences that just can’t be, stop trying to delude yourself into thinking you can’t exist without it. ‘For God hasn’t given us a spirit of fear; but of power, and of love and of a sound mind’(2Tim 1:7). There’s nothing wrong with being afraid but remember He that is in you is far greater than whatever it is you are afraid of, even the unknown. I can’t apologise for sounding like those fiery preachers who take free rides inside commercial buses and pour spit all over you if you are unfortunate enough to sit close to them but all I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I haven’t seen. So be of good courage! Hold your head up high! Let go…and let God!

Different sides of the same coin.

Most people will say that life is funny. I would absolutely agree with them. I think also that in addition to being funny, life is so amazing. It shows both sides of the coin. In life, we experience joy, laughter, love and happy times. But in the same vein, we also experience sorrow, anguish, heartbreak and sad times. Then, there are those crazy times that can make us laugh and cry at the same time. For example, the pain and joy of childbirth.

I have like everybody else out there experienced both sides of life and both have taught me different things in different ways. In my own estimation, I have been through a lot but then I realize that in the course of life, I am going to experience much more. The truth is the number of sad and happy times are far going to exceed the ones that I’ve experienced already. This is the fact whether I like it, want it or not.

There was a time when life was seemingly perfect. Oh the blissfully ignorant days of childhood where we have everything we could ever want or wish for. As the last child, everyone doted on me. I had so much love and care. I could achieve anything and be anybody I wanted to. You know the feeling when your mother tells you that you are the most beautiful thing that God ever created. You get this feeling that just can’t be put into words. As a child, pain, heartache and the like do not exist at all. Life is perfect.
When u graduate from childhood, you graduate from a perfect world into an imperfect world. You start experiencing the vicissitudes of life. Do I need to talk about the heart searing pain of our first heartbreak? The feeling that nothing is ever going to be the same again. The crushing sense of loss and grief. The nights spent crying and the days spent listlessly gazing in front of you like a new type of automated robot or the newest specie of the zombie family. My first heartbreak, hahaha. Now I can laugh about it, but trust me, then, it was not funny at all.

I’ve learnt a lot on my short journey on earth. I’ve learnt to smile even when all I feel like doing is crying bucketfuls of tears. I’ve learnt how to be strong for myself and for those around me even though I feel as weak as a wet Kleenex. I’ve learnt how to take things as they come. I know now that I don’t have the power to change everything no matter how hard I want to. I’ve learnt how to love again and again after so many heartbreaks. I’m not. gonna give up on love. No way. I’ve learnt too that it’s not about what happens to you but how you react to what happens to you. Its okay to cry but you can smile after the tears have stopped.

But the biggest lesson thus far has been that God never promised that we would not experience pain or disappointments or betrayals. He never promised us that everything would be rosy all the time. He did not say life would be a piece of cake. There would be trials and tribulations but his promise was that he would be right by our side and never leave us. He said he would be our comforter and our refuge in times of trouble. He has promised to never leave us nor forsake us and his word is true.

So when u experience crazy joy or the reverse side of that coin, remember God is sharing that moment with you. When I think about the long road ahead of me and the many diverse experiences in store, the many times I will doubt myself, the countless times I’ll dance with joy or the many times I’ll weep my eyes out, the most important thing is that I won’t be going through these moments alone. To me, that is all that really matters. Life, bring it on.

Taking back my spiritual leadership!

Yesterday afternoon, I had gone to see a sick friend at the hospital and the discussion rotated around a number of topics-Politics, entertainment, religion etc. Of course I had my opinion on all topics raised as I do about almost everything. Call me opinionated but the fact remains that everyone is entitled to their own opinion and I am not an exception.

None got me as mad as churches who do not think about the poorer part of their congregation. Only a man wearing the shoes knows where it pinches him, they say. Maybe because I see myself as part of the less wealthy folks anyway. For your information, I attend Winners Chapel but its time to call a spade, a spade.

The founding bishop of Winners Chapel Bishop David Oyedepo is Nigeria’s wealthiest pastor. With homes around the world and private jets, one can safely say he’s indeed a wealthy man. But my problem is that I don’t understand what the church stands for anymore. Is it a business or a call to evangelize? A guy on twitter said …the pastor is a religious capitalist and the church and the people are just a possession’. I’m inclined to agree with him.

Lets talk about private universities owned by churches. Oyedepo owns Covenant University. One of the most stupendously expensive universities in Nigeria with the aim of providing quality education. And I ask to whom? Only the rich? Because the poor can definitely not afford it. In a country where over 70% of the population is poor, why should Christian education be so bloody expensive? So the average man should die illiterate ehn? Benson Idahosa University is another institution owned by a church and whose fees half the church can’t afford. The list goes on and on.

Aside from the education for the rich which Winners Chapel currently undertakes, Oyedepo owns 4 private jets (including a recently purchased  $35 million Gulfstream V jet), Faith Academy, Dominion Publishing house and is listed in the Forbes list as Nigeria’s wealthiest pastor with a net worth of $150 million. Are you kidding me?

Oh and did I mention that he just launched an airline, Dominion Airline? What has an airline got to do with preaching the gospel? Why is he amassing so much wealth and is so interested on business? Is the church a business? Or part of a large business venture for him? The proceeds from all these businesses are going where? Back to the church or to trust funds for his kids who will eventually take over the church? How many church members can afford to take flights?   

Is Christianity a call to amass wealth or touch lives? He stated that his mandate is to “…liberate mankind from all oppressions of the devil…”. Is this the liberation? Are we his church members, paying our tithes and offerings and sowing seeds to fund a man’s business ambition? Does he want to preside over a church or a business empire? Am I attending a church or funding his business ambitions? Why is he so concerned about material things? Is this what Christianity is about?

If gold rusts, what will iron do? My secondary school teacher, Mr Iyere used to ask me this and it has become a life principle for me. If the spiritual leaders who millions look up to, place such value on physical wealth, do we really blame the poor man who goes to extra-ordinary lengths to attain such wealth? He’s merely trying to keep up with his pastor! His mentor! He’s simply trying to live up to the pace set by his pastor. Material wealth has now become the yardstick for measuring God’s blessings. If I’m not wealthy, then something must be wrong with my spiritual life. What utter rubbish!

And please don’t talk to me about Prosperity. How many houses did Jesus, our Lord have? How many horses (as car no dey that time) did Paul own? Isn’t it all vanity? Or is the book of Ecclesiastes lying now? What is this mad desire to acquire everything? Why is there so much emphasis on the gospel of prosperity in our churches? Is the church now a corporate institution with the primary aim of making money?  Since it is, what about fulfilling its Corporate Social Responsibility then? Do churches pay tax? No!

By the way, what exactly is my church doing for me when I don’t even have access to my pastor? And we complain of our politicians! I don’t have access to my Local government chairman or the politician representing my constituency that I voted for but then neither do I have access to my pastor because he’s too busy for me. So what exactly is the difference? When politicians and highly connected individuals are the only ones that have access to our pastors these days, I can’t help but ask who is fooling who? Na who dey ride okada wan see who dey for inside private jet or inside jeep with tinted windows with bodyguards and armed escort?

Our pastors own businesses funded by their churches. Some the congregation do not even know about. While doing the research on this article, I came across reports about our pastors, their vast assets and luxurious and flamboyant lifestyles and I was stunned.  Pastor Chris Oyakhilome is worth about $50 millon and was embroiled in a $35 million money laundering case some years ago where he was accused of siphoning funds from his church to foreign banks. Prophet T.B. Joshua is worth about $10 – $15million, Matthew Ashimolowo is worth $6 – $10 million, Chris Okotie ($3 – $10million). I called these names as they have been listed as the 5 richest pastors in Nigeria.

Check http://www.forbes.com/sites/mfonobongnsehe/2011/06/07/the-five-richest-pastors-in-nigeria/

If you want to be a businessman, be a businessman! If you want to be a pastor, be a pastor! Lets remove the blindfold from our eyes people. Lets stop being so religious that we forget about being Christians. If what my spiritual leader is doing, is smartly using me as a business tool, then its time

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