Whatever God used Papa, Archbishop Benson Idahosa to do; Baba was ebullient, Baba was elegant, Baba was outgoing, Baba was all over the place but in joint partnership with Jesus, this is the power behind the throne.
(Pointing at Mama Idahosa)
Mama – in prayer, in fasting very quietly behind the scene, she stood by Baba for all the decades that they laboured together until Baba went to glory. And after Baba went to glory, she took the mantle and has taken work to another level.
Please, celebrate mama. Celebrate mama. Clap, clap, clap, clap.
You know – wait a minute (turns to the audience), are you angry with me? You see, God governs the universe by the law of sowing and reaping. When you celebrate somebody, you are planting a seed for your own celebration. Please celebrate mama. We celebrate you. We celebrate you. We celebrate you.
Mama, more Grace to you. The Lord will renew your strength day by day. You will not be weary. You will not faint. You will continue to mount with wings as eagles. You will run and not be weary. You will walk and not faint. Mummy, we love you. Please, give her a big hand. We love you, ma. We love. Thank you, thank you.
Please, sit down.
Let me celebrate all the leaders, our Lord Bishops and all the other leaders, all the other pastors, who are the Aarons and Hur; all the leaders who have been acting as Aaron and Hur to support our Archbishop to make this work easy for her, to give her joy in doing the work, I celebrate every one of you. Please help me celebrate our leaders. Our Bishops. Thank you, thank you.
And last but certainly not the least, let me celebrate my brother, my friend, my Bishop, the Bishop of this Cathedral, the man who has been looking after me since I came, the man eh who is a carbon image of Papa in height, in skin colour, in facial appearance, in speech, in wisdom, please help me celebrate Bishop Feb Idahosa. We celebrate you, sir. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Please, sit down.
You see, no one needs to wonder why the grace of God is so much and evident upon his life. He works in humility and the Bible says, “God gives Grace to the humble”, and you see, he’s an epitome of Grace because he works in humility. Please, the Bible says, “the elder that rule well is worthy of double honour”.Give him a hand one more time. We celebrate you, sir. We celebrate you, sir. Thank you, thank you.
I am back – I am back home. Archbishop picked me up; 1985 February, I came to do a crusade in Benin and the news got to Papa and he asked me come and have a lunch with him in his house. February 1985, 1986, sorry. 1986 February. I’ve been hearing about the Archbishop since 1975 that I got born again. His image loomed so large. I remember being at the 14th ‘World Pentecostal Conference’ in Zurich and I was wearing my label, my tag that says I’m a Nigeria. And during the time we were mingling together, people will come to me – “oh, Nigeria? – and they were asking me, “Do you know Benson A-Idahosa?” That’s how…and I was saying to myself, “ah ah, of all the millions of people that are in Nigeria, why are you asking me…?”
The first person came, the second person came, another one came, “do you know Benson A-Idahosa?” His image loomed so large. But then, when he invited me for a lunch in his house, I was like, caught with awe, how will I be a guest in a man so great, so global in influence…so I came on time, I didn’t want to come late. (Laughs)
So, I saw a white house, I saw a red carpet. I’ve never seen a preacher living in a house like that. Never. Archbishop changed the face of Christianity in Nigeria. (Audience claps) He did. I’m wearing this today to honour Baba. In those days, in those days of S.U, you wear this (holding his agbada) to preach, they will be casting demons out of you. They will be binding the spirit of worldliness that you are wearing agbada. But Baba will come in his flowing agbada, his agbada is not as small as my own, he will make sure it reaches to the ground, you know, and not apologize for prosperity at all. He was very bold in proclaiming prosperity – the gospel of God’s Grace.
So, I came to the house, Papa went to dedicate one hospital somewhere. I remember. So I sat in the corner, and Papa bursted into the house, “where is the man from Ibadan? Where is the man from Ibadan?”. I identified myself, I said, “I’m the one, sir”. He said, “what is your name?”. I said, “Francis Wale Oke”. He said, “Dr Wale Oke”. Dr. First meeting. I wasn’t a doctor, not a medical doctor, not an academic doctor, I was just brother, brother. I had not even been ordained. Dr Wale Oke. And that is what Papa called me until he went home. From day one, he began to lift me. (Audience claps). A lifter of people.
And then he said, “when were you called into the ministry?”. I told him. He said, “fine. Do you have a church?”. I said, “no, sir”. I, I would have stopped at “no sir” but I went forward. I said, “we have a fellowship”. He said, “fellowship, okay. How many are you in your fellowship?”. I said, “we are over 600”. He said, “600?”. Papa said, “fellowship my foot! Jesus didn’t say ‘I will build my fellowship’. He said ‘I will build my church’. Why are you calling a church a fellowship? I’m coming to Ibadan”
I didn’t – before I invited Archbishop, he invited himself. A – a small boy like me. And then he asked me another question. He said, “have you been ordained?”. I said, “yes, sir”. Now, I didn’t – I wanted to push back. I said, “yes, sir. John 15:16 – you have not chosen me, I have chosen you and ordained you. You should go and bring forth fruit and your fruit should remain”. I said, “God has ordained me”.
Papa said, “that’s very true – that’s the scripture. But what heaven has done, earth must testify to it”. He said, “Helen, Helen”. Helen was his secretary- “bring my diary. Let’s fix a date to ordain this man”.
First day of meeting him. And then he said, “look at, look at, look at my diary. Any Sunday that I’m in Benin, any Sunday, show me”. And then Helen said, “oh, you are in Benin – Daddy, you are in Benin at so so so day”. He said, “Dr Wale Oke, you will bring all your leaders, your wife and all your leaders, come to Miracle Centre, I will ordain you”. I said, “thank you, sir”. First day. And then, he said, “sit down” and I sat. Archbishop – I said I’m fasting and he said, “I said, Dr Wale Oke, your prayers are answered” (Laughs)
He said, “you are with me today, your prayers are answered. Eat and rejoice!” And then, Papa scooped a spoon of food and put on my table. He said, “eat that one, it is anointed”. Now, how will the great Archbishop serve you food and tell you it is anointed and you said you wouldn’t eat? I picked my cutlery and I began to deal with it (laughs). And I cleaned the plate, of course, when you come to Daddy’s house, those who are eating are plenty but you must not leave a grain of rice in the plate. You must – you must – nothing must be wasted. You must finish. Those who know Papa, you know what I’m talking about.
You must not- you must not waste it. Finish it. I enjoyed myself. That was my baptism into the life of Archbishop Benson Idahosa. He was warming with love. He swept me off my feet. I was – I was speechless. Nobody has treated me like that. He gave me doctorate degree prophetically first day. He fixed the date of my ordination first day. He changed my fellowship to church first day. I mean, he served me food and I’ve never been hungry since that time. Common (bursts into laughter – audience claps) never been hungry.
You see, I told Dr Feb, I can talk of Papa forever. I will say a little bit of it. So when I left, eh, Baba’s place, I called my friend on the phone, he was in Kaduna then, Bishop David Oyedepo. I said – and we are all brothers. I said, “brother David”. He said, “yesssssssssss, the Olubadan of Ibadan”. That’s how we joke. I said, “guess what? I’m driving from Benin now, very shortly after I conclude this telephone call with you, but I must tell you before I leave Benin.I just met with Archbishop Benson Idahosa”. He said, “really?” I said, “sure! And he gave me a date to bring my friends and my leaders so he can ordain me”. He said, “really?” I said, “sure!”
He said, “when next are you going to him? We’re going together”. I’m telling you. I’m on the Altar of God. I introduced David Oyedepo to Papa and he stole my Baba from me (bursts into laughter). He stole, he stole my Baba – you see, I came from a background of Scripture Union, a little bit with DEEPER LIFE So I was – while I was dragging my feet, my goodness, Bishop Oyedepo came and got Papa’s attention in that, that’s how we’ve been.
When Bishop Oyedepo was consecrated as Bishop in 1988, I was the only minister that Papa, Archbishop, allowed to join in the officiating – as officiating. He said, “you! Dr Wale Oke, you ought to have been a Bishop. Okay, okay. You can’t run away. I’ll catch you. Join the line! You’re the one who will announce the – make the announcement and all that”. He gave me the privilege, he began to lift me and to lift me and here am I today – an evidence, a living proof of the Grace of God and of the large heart of our Baba, Archbishop Benson Idahosa. Please, give the Lord a – give the Lord – give the Lord a big hand – give – clap like you are serious (audience clapping) clap like you are serious.
To the glory of God, it was through my platform that Pastor Adeboye and Archbishop Idahosa came close. I had invited the two of them to minister at the annual Holy Ghost convention run by our ministry in Ibadan. That was how they met. Archbishop Idahosa was sitting side by side with Pastor Adeboye. They became very close and they maintained that relationship till Idahosa went to be with the Lord.”
“I saw the grace of God upon the late Archbishop Benson Idahosa and Pastor Enoch Adeboye. I moved close to them and they taught me a lot of things. I saw in Pastor Adeboye the gift of the word and teaching while I learnt from Idahosa boldness and faith for evangelism. The two of them accommodated me and allowed me to flourish in my own area of calling.
I bless the name of the Lord. I bless the name of the Lord. I give God all the Glory. Now, let’s go into the word of the Lord because like I told you, if I’m to talk about Papa, no, we can talk, and then we will take a break by midnight and come back again 6am and then, we keep going because my heart is full. But, let’s look into the scripture.
Psalm 90 and I read verse…Psalm 90 and I read verse 12. It’s a scripture we all know and this is where the Holy Spirit laid on my heart to share with us from today. I – Mama, I thank you for the privilege, Bishop, thank you for the opportunity to minister here. Now, Psalm 90:12:
“So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom”
I read again,
“So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom”
This Psalm was written by the Old Sage, Moses, the Prophet who took the children of Israel out of Egypt across the Red Sea, across the wilderness. Moses, the man of God. So he wrote, talking to God in prayer – so teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom. I’ve read it three times on purpose.God – our God inhabits in eternity. He has no beginning of life, no end of days. When time began, when the beginning began, the beginning met God.
The Bible said, “in the beginning, GOD!”
So when the beginning began, God was already there. He inhabits eternity. But He created time for us. He made us scriptures of time, particularly, in our sojourn on earth. Everybody has a point of entry into this world and a point of exit because we are scriptures of time. However, in making us scriptures of time, He has put eternity in our hearts. I will say something about that a little later.
In Ecclesiastes 3:11, if you have that scripture in the New Living Translation, the Bible says there that, “God makes all things beautiful in His time”. New Living Translation now says, “He has put eternity in the heart yet God has made everything beautiful in His own time. He has planted eternity in human hearts. He made us scriptures of time but He put eternity in our hearts because He wants us to spend eternity with Him. I’ll say more about that.
And you see, He wants us to number our days and if you are going to come down to the season we are now, at the mercy of God, we have spent 321 days in this year. 321 days and we should be grateful to God. Many people that saw the beginning of this year are not alive today. Many have died of COVID-19, many have been kidnapped and killed, many have been shot, many have died in road accidents, but He made us to see the beginning of the year and He has taken us through day by day by day and day and we are alive. Somebody shout, “I’m alive!”.
Audience Chants, “I’m alive!”
Bishop Wale Oke – “Louder”
Audience Chants, “I’m alive!”
If you are grateful to God, give the Lord a big shout of Hallelujah!
So we have 41 days more to go if we count today. We have 41 days more to go in year 2021. Those 41 days shall be glorious for you. In those 41 days, you will experience uncommon favour. In those 41 days, God will give you pleasant surprises. You will be far from sorrow. You will end this year with great joy. If you know you will end this year with great joy, common shout Hallelujah!
So teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom. 41 days to go. But you know what? There is no limit to what God can do for you in the 41 days. Infact as a matter of fact, there’s no limit to what God can do for you today. Today. Someone say ‘today’. Someone say ‘today’. Somebody is going to experience a miracle today. Who is the person? I’m in a miracle centre – receive your miracle!
Papa ordained me, poured oil on me and he said, “Go and break barriers. Go and take cities. Go and take nations. Go, heal the sick. Go, raise the dead. Go, cleanse the lepers. Go, perform miracles” and through the Grace of God, I’ve been doing that because I have been commissioned to do it. So today, even today, receive your miracle. If your AMEN is louder, it will happen faster.
Now somebody, you are listening to me today, what you have been believing God for for many many many many many years, you are taking it home today. If you are the one, shout HALLELUJAH. Let me tell you a testimony, 1984, please sit down. 1984, I was asked…I was invited to do a revival, a 10 – day revival at the Foursquare Gospel Church Headquarters in Yaba, Lagos. It was a very very powerful meeting…
One of the nights, I was speaking about the Glory of God and the Heaven opened to me and the word of the Lord came to me; of course, the son of a prophet is a prophet. How can you be the son of the Archbishop Benson Idahosa and you won’t prophesy? No, no. The mantle is on you. And the Lord said, “there is somebody here who has been waiting for a blessing for the past 11 years…”, and I should announce to that person that the person was going home with that blessing today, that day. I say when the prophetic word comes, wherever it is received, it must happen. The moment the prophetic word is received by faith, there is no power in hell that can stop it from happening. I speak prophetically into your life, the remaining 41 days of this year will bring you blessings, will bring you favours, will bring you miracles, will bring you signs, will bring you wonders, will bring you abundance, beginning from today. If that is you, shout AMEN.
So, I said it (at Foursquare Gospel Church Headquarters). They were praying, I hushed them. I said, “somebody is here, what you have been expecting for 11 years, you are taking it home”, and then I went home after the meeting. There was a woman there, this woman was a lawyer, married to another lawyer, they met at the University of Lagos when they were reading Law. They were believers before they married. They didn’t live immoral lives, they lived clean lives. They lived according to the Gospel. They weren’t sleeping together before they got married, they maintained the integrity of the Gospel. And they agreed together that they were going to have 3 children. How many children?
Audience Chants – “THREE!”
That they were going to have 2 boys and one girl, and that they were going to have those 3 children within the first 5 years of their marriage so they could settle down and build their career. So they got married – first year, second year, third year, fourth year, fifth year, nothing, NOTHING! The year I stood on the sacred altar of God to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ was the eleventh year of their marriage and I didn’t know them from Adam. I didn’t! Church Gist. But the one who called me, who anointed me, who sent me, each time I stand to minister for Him, He stands with me like a mighty terrible warrior to make sure that my word does not fall to the ground. He confirms His word. He’s a faithful God. He is, and He will confirm His word in your life today.
Eleventh year of their marriage, I didn’t know. So, the woman screamed in the congregation and received it. I didn’t know. I just gave the word of knowledge and I went on. That was May. In the month of June, she conceived. She did not even know until after 3 months when the tummy began to grow. Now listen to me, about 9 months after, I received a delegate from Lagos – oh, I missed a critical part of it (the story). I told you they said they were going to have three children, is that correct? Two boys and one girl, did I tell you that?
Audience Chants – “YES!”
Ah, okay. Then I got a delegate from Lagos, that I should come and name my children. Ah, name my children? I’ve only one wife in the world. That’s what Baba taught us and the example he showed us. Ah, my children? And then, they told me the story. When that woman was going to be delivered, she was delivered of three children – two boys and one girl. Give the Lord Jesus a big hand. Give Him a hand. (Laughs) Oh – oh – oh – oh. Church Gist. We serve a God who confirms the word of His servant and performs the counsel of His messengers. Listen to me, each and everyone of you. On this day of celebration, you are going home with a celebration package, celebration gift, celebration breakthrough in the name of Jesus!
They agreed together to have three children and God heard but a demonic power blocked the prayer, the answer to the prayer for 11 years but by a prophet, the Lord God brought Israel our of Egypt, by a prophet was he preserved. When the prophetic word came, the demonic power was broken and the blessing was released. Every blessing that has delayed in your life, receive them now! Now! Now! Now! Now! Every miracle that have delayed, receive your miracle in the name of Jesus! Somebody shout HALLELUJAH!
Please, please, my son on the keyboard (turns to the keyboardist), help me prophesy. Put your hands on the keyboard. Just make sure it doesn’t overshadow my voice. Give me the minstrel and let me prophesy. So you see (turns back to the audience), 41 days – aha – there is nothing God cannot do. The Bible is very very clear. Look at what the Bible says in Matthew 14:26 – the things that are impossible with men are possible with God. Church Gist. The thing you have been trying to do, you have been trying to get them done, you have been trying to achieve, you have been trying to get them achieved, you have sought people to help you and men have not been able to help you. Listen to me. From today, over the next 41 days, you will see impossibilities become possiblities.
Archbishop came to Ibadan and was preaching. My children were still small. My last born is 36 now, 36 years now. My children were still small and Archbishop said, a possibilit-arian possibilit-izes impossibilities. Can you remember that? A possibilit-arian possibilit-izes impossibilities. I heard it, I believed it but my children captured it in their brain. So when we were going home, he said, “daddy, Papa said that a possibilit-arian possibilit-izes impossibilities”. I was the one driving, she was sitting beside me. I looked at this young girl. So, you heard it? She said, “I heard it and I like it. I will be a possibilit-arian”.
With God, all things are possible. And the Bible says in the book of Mark 9:23 – that to him that believeth, all things are possible. So, I like you to lift your right hand to God. Church Gist. Over the next 41 days, beginning from today, you will experience great possibilities, great open doors, great miracles, great blessings. Let Heaven hear your AMEN.
And listen to me, don’t think there is anything impossible – sit down please. Listen to me my friend, He made the Heaven and the earth in only six days, only six days. Everything that exists today, He made in only six days. Now, how many six days can you get out of 41? That is the limit or the possibility that you can experience from the hand of God if He made everything that existed in six days, there is nothing He cannot do in the remaining 41 days. There is somebody, you are listening to me now, before the end of this year, God will give you a house, a house, a house, a house, a house.
Somebody you are listening to me, before the end of the year, God will give you land, land, land, land, land. I didn’t hear your AMEN. Many of you, you came here today by public transport, before the end of this year, you will drive your own car. If you believe it, shout HALLELUJAH. Many of you, my children, many of you, my children, you have been praying and fasting and believing, “who am I going to marry? Who am I going to marry?” Church Gist. Over the next 41 days, God will orchestrate your steps to meet your life partner in the name of Jesus. Your joy shall be full. Reproach is taken away from you in the name of Jesus. Who is receiving it? If you are receiving it, come and shout HALLELUJAH.
There is no limit to what God can do. Don’t limit God! Help me preach to your neighbor. Please look at your neighbor and say, “my friend, over the next 41 days, DON’T LIMIT GOD! Because all things are possible”. Amen? So beginning from today, begin to work with God on what you want Him to do for you.
Now, let’s go back to that scripture – Psalm 90:12. Let me do a little exegesis there. It says, “so teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom”. Why does God want us to number our days? Is it just to do arithmetic? Or to be another mathematician? No! He wants us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom. Church Gist. And like one translation puts it, that we may live wisely. That we may live wisely. This is very very very important. God wants each one of us His children, not only to believe Him for miracles and blessing, but over the next 41 days, to live wisely. If you live wisely over the next 41 days, oh boy, your life will change forever. If you live wisely, you will see great possibilities. And you see, Papa, Archbishop Benson Idahosa lived wisely. That’s why I’m here today.
He invested his life in what mattered most. I will hear him again and again, “son, evangelism is our supreme task”, until the thing got into my bones. Evangelism is our supreme task. Papa will tell me, “there is no greater good you can do for anybody than to lead him to Christ”. Aha! Papa told me one day, “yes, I clothe the naked but don’t clothe them into hell. Clothe them and give them the gospel”. Aha! Papa said, “I feed the poor but don’t feed them into hell. Feed them and give them the gospel”. And how can you forget that?
When Archbishop Benson Idahosa died, he didn’t leave me with money, he didn’t leave me with billions but he left me with something that money can never buy. He left me with something that is commanding money now. He invested his life, properly, where it mattered, wisely and God wants us to be like Papa, to live in wisdom. Church Gist. So teach us to number our days that we might apply our hearts unto wisdom. The man who said that was the man who received the law from God – the law of Moses is the foundation for all judicial system all over the world today. He lived for what mattered most because He took time to number his days.
Now, I’ve mentioned Moses, I’ve mentioned Papa, now let’s see something about Paul. Paul was so consumed about we living wisely. In Ephesians chapter 4, let’s read from verse 15, Ephesians 4:15, let’s go through it a little bit. Excuse me, I made a mistake, it’s Ephesians 5:15 – see then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise. Redeeming the time because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise but understanding what the will of the Lord is – Let me prophecy over your life, God’s will for your life will be revealed to you.
We are at a time now, when every wise believer should spend time with God. Towards the end of the year like this, what do you want from me? What’s your plan for me for 2022. Where are you taking me? Where are you leading me? What do you want me to do? You are doing a little shambala here, a little shambala there, you know, a little shambala is that you are praying in the Holy Ghost. Church Gist. You are waiting on the Lord. You want Him to reveal His counsel for you. Paul was so consumed about us living wisely. Let me show you some scriptures. In Colossians 4:5, if you can get it for me in the New Living Translation, I will appreciate that. It says, “live wisely”. How are we to live?
Audience Chants – “WISELY!”
And He said that again and again, many times over in his epistles. Let’s see what he’s saying in 1 Timothy 3:2, he was talking about church leaders. Again, in New Living, look at that – So an elder must be a man whose life is above reproach. He must be faithful to his wife. He must exercise self – control, live wisely – so, a Bishop, an elder, must live wisely. How are we supposed to live?
Audience Chants – “WISELY!”
Paul was very concerned about it. Now, go again…Titus…he said it again and again…Titus 1:8 New Living Translation – Rather, he must enjoy having guests (still talking about church leaders) in his home (and Papa was like that. Oh, the house was always full, table full. Infact, those days, I used to wonder how mummy was coping. The guests…and everybody will eat. Church Gist. Guests from abroad, from at home, from anywhere, you must eat. Alright) must enjoy having guests in his house and he must love what is good. He must live wisely – please, personalise it. Say, “I – MUST – LIVE – WISELY”. How are you supposed to live?
Audience Chants – “WISELY!”
Go to Titus 2:2, the same man, Paul, talking. It says, “Teach older men (we have talked about church leaders…first, the one we looked at in Colossians, talked about every believer, then we looked at 1 Timothy 3, church leaders, now look at this now) teach the older men to exercise self control to be worthy of respect, and to live wisely”. Older men in the church, how are we supposed to live?
Older Men in the church – “WISELY!”
Go to verse 5, let’s see. I’m reading this scripture because I want to drum it into us. It said…let’s starts from verse 4 please, so we can get the background. Alright – the older women (he has talked to everybody, he has talked to church leaders, now he has talked to older men, now older women) these older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children (verse 5) to live wisely – so in these two verses, older women in the church are to live wisely and to reach the younger women in the church to live wisely. Church Gist. How are we supposed to live?
Audience Chants – “WISELY!”
Okay, let’s look at this again, look at verse 6 please, alright – in the same way, encourage young men to live wisely – so the whole church is covered. The leaders, the elders, the older men, the older women, the younger women, the younger men, everybody, because you see, wisdom is the principal capital for any investment you want to engage in in life. Without wisdom, we fail. And you see, the man was talking and asking us to live wisely, look at his life. He was very very productive. Very. He undertook more missionary journeys than any other apostle. He raised more ministry children than any other apostle. He planted more churches than any other apostle because my friend, your wisdom is justified by the results you are getting. Don’t tell me you are wise, show me you are wise. Show me the results, show me the impact, show me the fruit of your ministry, the fruit of your business and I will tell you whether you are wise or not.
He was outstandingly productive. He wrote more than two-thirds of the new testament scriptures. One man! All the other writers of the scripture in the new testament, all that they wrote – Matthew, Mark, John, put together – were half worth what Paul put alone wrote. Very productive. Church Gist. So, he lived wisely, he showed it through his results and was telling us, “whether you are young, old, leader, elder, women, men, live wisely…” because to live wisely is to live productivity, to live creatively, to make impact, to get results, to get results that others are struggling with and over the next 41 days, you will get great results.
Now, there are three things I want to pick out before I close. Can I ask you a question? Am I free? How many of you will live wisely? (Audience raises their hands up). If you will live wisely, shout HALLELUJAH.
Audience Shouts – “HALLELUJAH!”
Or, let me change it. How many of you will live more wisely than you have been living before? If you will, come on, shout HALLELUJAH.
Audience Shouts – “HALLELUJAH!”
Now at this particular time, three things I want to counsel you to do.
Number One – Take time to THINK!
Wise people think. They think over their past, they think over their present, they think about the future. So they can reorganize their lives, they take time to think. God has given us sanctified common sense, that’s what Papa taught me. God has given us sanctified common sense. He put the brain in our head so we can think. Church Gist. And God Himself said, “come now, let us reason together”. So God wants us to, you will sit down at this time, over the next 41 days, it may be one day you will take out or three, or a whole week or longer time to review your life – past, present, future. To review what you are going to do or get done in 2022. You think and you reason with God.
According to Ephesians 3, if you read 20 and 21, God is able to do exceeding, abundantly, you know it. Above all that we…talk to me now (ASK)…or think. Am I correct? Okay, let us read that scripture together. One, two, read aloud.
“Now, unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us”
Can somebody say, “AMEN?” Two great, great powers that have been given to us – power to think, power to pray. But the pentecostal church, we have been doing so much of praying – pray, pray, pray – and that’s right. Church Gist. We are not even praying enough, we should pray more. But we have neglected the dimension of thinking. So 50% of the capability that God has made available to us, we are not using. He wants us to take time to ask, he wants us to take time to think.
At this season when the year is coming to an end, mark time out to sit alone in the presence of God, not just to ask but to think. Make time to think
Number Two – Make time to PLAN!
Don’t just think and leave it there. Turn your thinking into planning. Map out the remaining 41 days of this year. What do you want to use the remaining days to achieve? Map out 2022, month by month, what do you want God to help you achieve in January to December? Which days are the high points of the year? Church Gist. The important days of the year that are very important, and you plan. Which event? Plan! Jesus Christ, our Lord, He taught us planning when in the book of Luke, let’s see what it says. Luke 14:28:
“If any of you wanting to build a tower…for which of you, intending to build a tower sitteth not down first and counted the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it”
That is planning. A successful ministry does not just happen. You think, you plan. Those who think and plan, the difference is always clear between them and those, all they do is pray, pray, pray, pray. Plan your calendar – oh no no, when we get there, Holy Spirit will take over – no no no. Holy Spirit wants to take over now. Think, Plan.
Number Three – You PRAY.
Having taken your time to think, having taken your time to plan, you now commit your thoughts to the Lord. In Psalm 37:5, King James Version, we know that scripture. Psalm 37:5:
“Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in Him and He shall bring it to pass”
You have taken your time to think, you have taken your time to plan, now begin to pray. It becomes meaningful. You carry you thoughts on your heart and you are committing it to God and you are talking and praying. Church Gist. Prayer can be empty without having properly thought, having properly planned. Prayer becomes concrete, powerful, forceful, substantial, when you have taken time to think, and you have taken time to plan. In Proverbs 16:3, King James Version. Proverbs 16:3 –
“Commit thy works unto the Lord, and thy thoughts shall be established”
That is, you have thought, you have planned, now you begin to pray. The prayer can be one day, two days, can be with fasting, depending on how serious you are at this critical time. This is not the time to be going about with all manner of celebrities, eating, drinking, no no. It’s time for sober reflection, to stay in the presence of God, to think.
A friend or mine said, “if you don’t think, you will stink”. To think, to plan and to pray. So that before the end of the year, you have laid out your agenda for next year. My friend, by January one, it’s too late to prepare for 2022. It’s like trying to catch a plane that is already taxing. The plan is already on the tarmac taxing and you want to board it, it’s late! Church Gist. By January one, if you don’t prepare beforehand, it’s too late. So, maximise the next 41 days. Reorganize your life to live wisely, to invest each day – don’t just spend it. Invest in your tomorrow, in your future.
I want to close. Let’s go to that scripture, Ecclesiastes 3:11 that I referred to, New King James version. Alright. God has made all things beautiful in His time. Sorry, Ecclesiastes 3:11, NLT, thank you.
“Yet God has made everything beautiful for His own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart…”
I am a creature of time but God has planted eternity in my heart. Do you know what? Each of you that are here, you will never cease to exist. There is no time that you will cease to exist. No. It’s not a prayer, it’s a fact. At old age, when the spirit gets out of the body, this body gets down to the dust, okay? But that’s not the end of your spirit. Your spirit goes somewhere and where your spirit goes is a factor of your relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.
If you are born again, Hallelujah. If you are washed by the Blood of Jesus, Glory to God! If you have received Christ as your Lord and saviour, wonderful! Church Gist. To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord. When you die, you go straight to Heaven. Somebody say, AMEN! That’s where Papa is. Where is Papa? Heaven! Surely!
Mama, let me tell a story. It’s a little personal. Two days or so before Papa died, I was traveling to UK. So, I called Papa. Papa was in Lagos. He said, “Dr Wale Oke, meet me in the house in Lagos”. So, I went there. (Archbishop) John Osa-Oni was there and myself. And Papa was talking, so full of life! Ebullient, his typical self! And then, we ate together. I now said, “Daddy, please pray for me. I’m traveling to UK tonight”. And he said, “okay, go well”. And he prayed. So I traveled to UK. Two days after, somebody called my line in UK, a British friend.
He said, “did you hear the news? Archbishop Benson Idahosa has gone to glory”. I said, “you are a liar!” I was very…I said, “you are a liar! Two days ago, I was with him. I ate with him in Lagos. You are a liar!” Church Gist. He said, “the email is going round”, and then he gave me some details that, “oh, he was hosting some guests and all of that”. Aha! I said, “are you sure?” Okay. I said, “I will get back to you”. So, I called my friend, Bishop David Oyedepo, from my office in London. It was the secretary that picked it.
“Where is Oyedepo?”
They said, “he was on his way to Benin”. Ahh (Sighs). Could it be true?
So, I called Papa’s office. It was Helen that picked the call. She was very sad. I said, “Helen, it’s me! Bishop Francis Wale Oke”. She said, “Daddy, I know. I know your voice”.
“Where is my Papa?”
“Can I talk to Papa?”
She broke into tears.
Ahh, could it be true? I didn’t know what hit me. Me, I hate London buses. I hate them. They go too slowly. Mummy likes them, not me. I want something that moves fast. I’m a child of the Archbishop, how can I like something slow? You are moving too slowly, I will shout at you. But that day, I wasn’t going anywhere. I joined one of the London buses. I went to the top level and they were just driving. Church Gist. I just wanted to while away time, I was lost. When the bus got to the last bus stop after hours, the man came to me, the conductor, he said, “my friend, where are you going? We have gotten to the last place”.
So, I had to climb down. I was just thinking. Does it mean Papa will not enter the Garden of Victory again? I will not hear his voice, ‘Dr Wale Oke’, again? He was serious on me. I was sad. Three days after, Mama, I fell into a vision. It’s one of the ways God speaks to me. It was a big, massive hall. It was heaven and it was a hall full of choir. And it was Archbishop that was conducting the choir. It was…this is me…he was in a white robe, I mean, ebullient as ever, conducting the choir and they were singing. And then a voice said, “That’s Benson”, and then the vision disappeared.
That was where my healing began. God saw that I was so heartbroken, I was lost because Papa was too alive to die! There was no death in his face. It was too sudden. And I was confused, I didn’t know what to say. Church Gist. I knew on getting back home, people were going to ask me questions and I didn’t have an answer. I ordered my office to open a condolence register, a big red log book at the entrance of our headquarters. By the time I returned from UK 5 days after, the whole thing was full.
People came from everywhere – Ogun State, Lagos State – because, you know, they knew me and Papa. They knew me as his protégé. I was so broken hearted and God gave me that vision and I was like “awww, he’s in heaven, conducting the choir. Leading as usual, leading, leading, leading. Joyful as usual”.
And my friend, if you are born again, you are going to Heaven, you will see Archbishop Benson Idahosa. But if you are not born again, my friend, you won’t go to Heaven… Church Gist. Your spirit will go to hell, to be there forever. God has planted eternity in our hearts. When you die, you will still continue to live in hell forever or in Heaven forever with Jesus, Our Lord and with Archbishop Benson Idahosa.
Source: Church gist