Ota pastors conference
By Wilson Adekumola
A group of preachers from the United States of America took turn to counsel Nigerian pastors at a conference organized by Heart Cry International on Saturday February 22.
The event held at Champion Chapel, Gateway Evangelical Ministries, Ota, Ogun State, It was first of its kind.
The first speaker, Ronald Ives, counseled church leaders to be less emotional and eschew impatience in their ministry work.
He said this will enable them lead people to Christ successfully.
He words, “if you allow your emotion to lead you, you will live unstable life. Emotion and impatience will lead you to instability and destruction. Though God gave us emotion it is wrong to lead people by emotion. People should be led by presence of God.”
While urging the participants not to live like Saul who was led by emotion but emulate Joseph who controlled his emotion, he noted that envy, anger, jealousy are the products of emotion. “Saul was led by emotion that was why he was full of anger, envy, and jealousy. But Joseph controlled his emotion and he triumphed over the temptations of the flesh. Emotion, even if it is natural, can be controlled. Some claimed they cannot control their emotion. That is not true because God gives us the spirit of self-control.”
Making copious reference to the Bible, he pleaded with the participants to be discipleship minded. “We are to disciple others in Christ Jesus. Discipleship should be a generational thing if we want to fulfill our assignment here on earth. Elijah handed the baton to Elisha. We should also groom people that will take the baton from us. We like what God is doing in Nigeria. We have a great team here in Nigeria. In Nigeria, there is passion for Jesus.” He disclosed.
Brother George Thompson, in his own message, advised ministers of God to teach with honesty. He said being honest with God will engender the presence of the Holy Ghost.
Pastor Kirk Parker however told the participants that, “you cannot twist the hands of God by fasting and prayer.”
He noted that church is not a structure but the people. “Don’t confuse church with building. Build the people with the word. Preach the gospel as the spirit leads. If God calls you, your past will not determine where you are going. So, let the presence of God lead you,” he counseled.
At the end of the conference the team of American preachers were presented with the gift of kampala, a traditional attire by the host pastor. The recipients of the gifts, Pastor Ronald Ives, Pastor Kirk Parker and Brother George Thompson of Jesus Center, USA, were highly elated when the traditional attire was presented to them.
Ronald Ives is one of the leaders in Heart Cry International, Michigan, USA, a ministry founded by his wife, Carla Ives. The ministry was established in 1990. In 2001, the ministry came to Africa with the name Heart Cry International of Africa.
Pastor Alaba Odufuye who presented the gift to them said the traditional attire was presented to them in order to showcase Nigeria’s culture. He disclosed that in those days, the whites did not believe we have clothing materials, “they had wrong impression that Africans were living in the bush. That we did not have clothing materials. So we want to show to them that we have culture. Giving them our traditional cloth is a way of popularizing our culture. We have been clothing ourselves before the missionaries came to evangelise us.”