SUNDAY, MAY 6, 2012.
LESSONS ON SHARING GOD TESTIMONY
‘Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, His faithful love endures forever.’ (Ps. 107v1)
WITHOUT doubt, God has done so much for His people, and we, equally, have so much to thank Him for. He wants us to tell everyone all that He has done. What has God done for you? Is there someone you can tell or share that testimony with?
Psalm 107 reminds us that thankfulness to God should consistently be on the lips of those He has saved or blessed. No wonder, this psalm was written to celebrate return of the Jews from exile in Babylon. It was God, all alone, who gave them freedom and hope; resettling them in the land of promise. Such is a testimony worth sharing.
Similarly, we appreciate Sir. Josiah Lily Ojo (OON, KSC, JP) who says he is not ashamed to tell the world of the goodness of the Lord. Now in his early 80’s, he agrees with the psalmist: ‘God’s faithfulness endures forever’.
Sir. Ojo made three attempts to work in the Army, the Navy and the Airforce. And at each time he seemed to have scaled the hurdles, the hands of providence would halt his advance. Even his mother, Madam Hannah Ekata, advised that he patiently waited on God in prayer, saying that God would certainly prove Himself strong. Ojo recalls that in those days it was uncommon to disobey one’s parents. He took her counsel and waited.
He veered into the teaching profession and taught briefly at St. Michael’s, Oleh, (later Women Training College in Benin, Benin-City). The hand of God was upon him, and with divine assistance, he was offered admission to study Physical and Health Studies at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, where he graduated in 1965. He could never have imagined that possibility. This, we could say, was God’s finger at work.
Sir. Josiah Ojo remembers, fondly, how God spoke to him in a dream, one day: ‘my son I am going to use you in a place you may not like initially. My children are in chains because of what the devil has done to them. I want you to go and remove the chains from their hands and put the devil to shame. This is the job I want you to do for me’”. Although this work was not disclosed immediately, later it became clear that God was leading him to something great.
It was unusual in those days to have graduates in the armed forces, talk little of prison services. But an advert in the Daily Times wanted ‘an Assistant Superintendent of Prisons with a degree’. Prior to this time, people had simply rose through the ranks.
Sir. Ojo felt God would demonstrate His goodness. He applied, participated in an interview and was taken. Happily, he (the only black African at the time) was sent to the Prison School College, London, to be formally trained.
The finger of God made this man rise to the position of Comptroller General of Prisons. And to the glory of God, he retired in good health in 1994.
Since he retired, he has invested time and resources in the Lord’s business. There seems to be no going back. God, who has been kind and merciful to him, deserves, at all times and in all places, his thanks. Sir Ojo insists it was God who picked him from being nothing and made him become something in life.
Currently, he is the President of Knights Sabongida Ora Diocese and President, Full Gospel Business Men’s Fellowship International, Ogbe Chapter, among others. Retired, but not tired, he is resolved to serve the Lord as long as he has breath, saying because God did not abandon him at a critical stage, he would, in turn, not turn his back on God.
The goodness of the Lord to His children is forever eternal, and Sir. Josiah Lily Ojo is an example of His mercies. As we share testimonies of God’s goodness in his life, we encourage Christians to share with others their testimonies of what God has done, what He is doing and what He would do.
I prophesy that this month, May, would fetch you a testimony. But be prepared to share this with others.Ven. Ernest Onuoha Rector, Ibru International Ecumenical Centre, Agbarha-Otor, Delta State.