I wrote this note earlier in the year and shared it on my facebook page. I have decided to share it here as well and I'm sure someone will be blessed and inspired by it.
There are situations, events, people and materials that affect us and play strong roles in influencing the kind of persons we become in life. Some of these influences work on us while we are oblivious of their action, but they nevertheless leave their mark on us reflected in our choices, actions and especially in our speech.
However there are some we do not forget, we cannot forget because it may have marked a momentous change which now defines our attitudes, choices or even our present fortunes. For me, my life has been framed by a collection of these influences and over the years, I have had a lot of unforgettable good experiences, which I remain grateful to God for today.
The most recent one is the Atmosphere For Miracles Live (AFM Live) meeting with Pastor Chris Oyakhilome which held at the LoveWorld Convocation Arena in Lagos on the 4th of February, 2011. The final one in a series of three meetings that had begun two Fridays before, it was the only one I could attend but it was one meeting I can say God prepared with me in His mind.
The AFM Live was a meeting that inspired great faith in me, unveiled again the infinite possibilities of divinity in a child of God; demonstrated the power of God through miracles of every kind, and revealed the boundless, immeasurable love of God for humanity. It was indeed an atmosphere for miracles in which we basked for those seven glorious hours as we worshipped, heard testimonies, watched the working of miracles and listened to the man of God proclaim the word of faith and prophesy with profuse, potent anointing.
I thought about some people I know who are proud skeptics of all things divine, especially miracles; who try to question the authenticity of miracles many people have received in our ministry over the years. I wondered what they would make of the miracles happening right before our eyes, and of those who testified about their healing during previous meetings.
I was particularly inspired by the testimony of a couple who testified of the miracle they received during the first meeting in January. The husband had been given the harrowing choice by his wife’s doctors to pick one; between his unborn baby and his seven-month pregnant wife diagnosed with renal failure amongst other conditions which did not make delivery a viable event.
Against all medical advice, the man discharged his wife and brought her to the AFM Live meeting on January 21 and there she was healed. She talked about how she received strength during the meeting and did not feel any of the weakness associated with her reported illness again.
Then she realized she had been healed. We watched the video clip showing her testifying of her miracle before Pastor Chris on the stage.
In a very touching display of affection, Pastor Chris led her to the gold-framed chair and helped her sit down and told her to declare that she was a queen and her body belonged to God, not to be taken over by sickness. Then said, “Go and have your baby!” She gave birth safely only days later, even though she was not nine months pregnant yet.
It was a testimony which inspired a lot of us to have faith; strong unyielding faith that cannot be intimidated by the troubling whims of life. Undoubtedly, that was the kind of faith which enabled the man to make a decision that could otherwise have led to tragedy.
That kind of faith will certainly produce a miracle. It is that selfsame faith which we have that makes us believe in a God that we cannot see and to live our lives as preachers of His gospel to the world.
There are those who don’t believe in God for a variety of well-polished reasons, who think the rest of us who serve Him are just wasting our time and that we are living in an illusion. I always feel sorry for such people and try to persuade them otherwise because I live in a world full of living proofs of God’s presence, which if they could only know, they too would believe.
Like one of the testifiers from Ghana said of his father: “when he saw my daughter healed of deafness in her right ear, then he believed in miracles. ” This man’s seven-year old daughter who had been deaf in the right ear for five years was healed during the AFM Live program of 2006 in Lagos and came with her father to testify during the meeting of God’s healing power.
It was all it took to change his father’s skeptical view of God. Just like Pastor said during the closing moments: “If you say you don’t believe in miracles, when you need one, you will believe.
Those of us who believe in miracles are not stupid. We are even as educated in the science and arts as you are.
We are as intelligent as you are. The only thing is, we’ve been given a greater light …” Many of those who are self-proclaimed atheists try to argue that God doesn’t make scientific or logical sense, so they would not profess to the folly of believing something devoid of rational proof.
But what I like to point out is that in their argument, they prove the same point they are trying to argue against. Yes it is true, God doesn’t always make rational sense and that is why He is God and not man.
The Bible already says that “the carnal mind cannot understand the things of the Spirit” and “the foolishness of God is wiser than men. ” He is a spirit – “the Father of all spirits” – who cannot be felt or discovered by any physical means or technique developed by the limited mind of a mere man whom he created.
In all our knowledge and discoveries, we are still limited; there are still many questions we don’t yet have answers to, there are still many incurable diseases in the world, there are technologies we have not mastered yet and even scientific theories we are still battling with. We all agree that there is a world of knowledge out there we are still striving to acquire; why then should a man presume to speak absolutely against the existence of something simply because he cannot prove it with the limited intellectual tools at his disposal? I have been following a recent series of documentaries on BBC Knowledge on the history and evolution of science from the theories of the past to the technologies of our present day.
While I found it quite inspiring and impressive, I equally observed the battles among notable scientists it took to bring us to our present knowledge of atoms, microbiology, engineering and the universe. The process of scientific discovery is fraught with uncertain conjectures, incomplete theories and a rough minefield of assumptions which must be put to the test again and again.
And even at the end of all these processes, science cannot provide all the answers to life’s questions and problems. That’s why medical science cannot provide a cure to every disease, because the discovery process is still going on.
So how can science prove the existence of God when it is still battling with the lesser issues of this world? Speaking on faith and our salvation as Christians, Pastor Chris explained: “Our salvation is a thing of faith; it cannot be proved in the lab, if it could then we are of all men most miserable!” That is why the Bible declares that “without faith, it is impossible to please God. ” God does not appeal to the human mind, and He never will.
If you don’t believe in Him, it does not make Him inexistent any more than your rejection of the law of gravity leaves you unaffected by the gravitational pull. But I believe that there is something in every man that believes in God, something continually seeking God and it is that thing which makes them search for meaning in life, it is the search for that thing that makes some of them say eventually “I don’t believe in God.
” That’s why I like to think of atheism as a religion; a religion of self-declared non-believers who try to find meaning in their unbelief. But God is the only one who can give you meaning- a purpose for living.
A few weeks ago, I read an article by a young Nigerian writer who declared he doesn’t believe in God, because his brief experience and observations of life made it difficult to lend credence to such a belief. In another place, he wrote that he went to church to disbelieve more.
I felt very sad for him and wanted to tell him that there is indeed a God who is love personified; a God who is the only God and is good and caring; a God who knows him, loves him and cares about him. And that God has principles in His eternal word that if he only understood and lived by, his life would be different.
The number one principle is faith and it does not require any physical or logical evidence, like in the Bible; “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. ” That faith, according to Pastor Chris is “our connection to an unseen, invisible God.
” These are the thoughts and feelings the program inspired in me and the whole experience was so profound that I felt I must share it with others. I had an unforgettable time during the Atmosphere For Miracles Live program and was reminded again of the love of God for us and my responsibility in reaching the world with the love of God.
I pray that those moments of sweet fellowship with the Holy Spirit, the miracles of faith and the life of God in us, which we celebrated during that program will someday be the daily experience of everyone who reads this note. .