- Category: Speeches
- Published on Saturday, 06 November 2010 21:52
- Written by Titus K. Oyeyemi
- Hits: 1200
As much as we recognize and appreciate the place of prayers in our lives, families, works, and nation, we must remember that we are admonished to both watch and pray, but I have added a third dimension to this age long maxim – work, watch, and pray.
Turning the Valley of Achor to a Door of Hope – Behold the Hope Bearers Are Here!
Speech by Rev. (Dr.) Titus K. Oyeyemi, the Founding President/CEO of
African Projects/Foundation for Peace and Love Initiatives
To the 8th National Airspace Safety Prayer organized by the
African Children of Peace Club (Lagos Chapter)
On September 16, 2010-09-16
All protocols observed.
Forty-two months ago, (March 11, 2007), the African Children of Peace Club (ACPC), an affiliate of African Foundation for Peace and Love Initiatives started praying for the safety of Nigerian airspace. Popularly known as NAMA Prayer because of the hand of fellowship the children had received from the leaders of the Nigeria Airspace Management Authority over the period, six sessions of this prayer had been held here at MMA, one session at Port Harcourt Int’l Airport, and this eighth session is being held at the NCAA fellowship hall. The children and their chaperones are happy for the hospitality bestowed upon them. The children use this occasion to thank NAMA, the NCAA, the FAAN, for their continuous hands of fellowship. The children also thank the federal government and the Lagos State government for allowing them to join their voices to pray for the safety of the Nigeria airspace.
The prayer for Nigeria airspace safety is the response of the African Children of Peace to the incessant air crashes that plagued Nigeria between 2005 and 2007. Still fresh in our minds was the Sosoliso crash at the Port Harcourt Int’l Airport on December 24, 2005, when several students of the Jesuit College heading home for Christmas lost their lives. The children felt that they had a duty to pray so that such national calamities and sorrows will never plague Nigeria again. I rejoiced greatly with the children and the entire aviation industry that God in his infinite mercy has been hearing and answering our prayers for airspace safety. It will go on records that Nigeria is about the only country that had never suffered any casualty resulting from air disaster in 42 months.
As much as we recognize and appreciate the place of prayers in our lives, families, works, and nation, we must remember that we are admonished to both watch and pray, but I have added a third dimension to this age long maxim – work, watch, and pray. It was for this reason that I want to appreciate the dedication of the Nigeria aviation industry to safety standards and all their endeavors to keep the Nigeria airspace free of disasters. The vigilance of the security agencies across the world aviation industry is also praise worthy. This reminds me of the miraculous aversion of the suicide bombing of Delta Airlines flying to Detroit on December 25, 2009. But for the vigilance of everyone on that plane, we could have recorded another airspace disaster associated with Nigeria. But glory be to God who did not allow the devil and his evil agencies to destroy the testimonies of the African Children of Peace who had been praying fervently for airspace safety, not only in Nigeria, but for airspaces of other countries in the world.
Every time we have opportunity to gather like this, God has always sent us prophetic words of encouragement. It was in the light of this that I want to tell you that God is willing to turn our valleys of Achor to doors of hope (Hosea 2:15). Many of you will remember the story of what happened to Achan and his family at the Valley of Achor. Achan sinned against God and brought trouble upon the fledgling nation of Israel that was struggling at that time to establish nationhood. Achan took the accursed thing, stole, dissembled, and put the accursed thing is his own stuff. Did that sound like Nigerian leaders? Achan and his family were punished and stoned to death at the Valley of Achor (Joshua 7:1-26).
Like the biblical Achan, our leaders have been bringing troubles upon our nation through various manners of sin; since independence on October 1, 1960. Time and space will not permit me to list the sins and atrocities of our leaders. One thing that manifests itself in that last 50 years of Nigeria’s Independence is that the political leaders have always got one thing wrong – they do not believe in the Nigerian nation, they have no vision that can truly make Nigeria great! They are like Achan who was selfish, self-centered and overtly self-conscious. No leadership since Independence has demonstrated a national vision for Nigeria. Instead of healing the sicknesses of Nigeria as a nation, these leaders are injuring and wounding the nation more and more because of their parochial and narrow mindedness. Nothing is good except it favors their ethnicity, geopolitical zone, or ideology. Instead of demonstrating people’s politics, our leaders have fallen into the error of playing power and party politics. Political brigandry cannot heal Nigeria. It is self-sacrifice that can heal Nigeria. And this self-sacrifice must be imbibed into the spirit of the nation to replace the rogue’s mentality currently pervading our national identity.
But the hope bearers are here! As I have said on several occasions, the Lord wants to use these children as the precious stones to rebuild the ruins of Nigeria. That is why we are teaching the children to pray for Nigeria, to love Nigeria, and to be faithful and loyal, and to defend Nigeria with all their strength, and to uphold unity and glory of Nigeria. That is why at African Foundation for Peace and Love Initiatives we are promoting proactive grassroots peacebuilding for ethnoreligious and ethnopolitical harmony with the themes of peace, love, and justice.
As we are teaching these children to love Nigeria objectively and subjectively, I appeal likewise to every Nigerian in the position of leadership to love Nigeria objectively and subjectively. Objectively in the sense of what you can give to Nigeria; and subjectively, in the sense of what Nigeria can give to you in return.
Early this morning as I was praying and meditating the Lord told me that darkness in any form or condition will soon become a thing of the past in Nigeria. This is a prophecy that will surely come to fulfillment – but you and I must believe this prophecy and we must do everything in our power to make it to come to pass.
The Lord said to me to tell Nigerian communities to become authentic communities. Authentic communities will reject and resist every form of deception.
The Lord said to me that the political leaders in Nigeria should allow his divine will to be done. Let us watch and see the hand of God. Let us see what God is doing with political leadership of the country. Let us not fight against God in our quest to enthrone deceptive political leadership come 2011.
As you are probably aware, out foundation is doing everything possible to promote proactive peacebuilding in Nigeria, among the youth, and the populace at large. It was in this vein that I invited you to join us as we mark the 2010 International Day of Peace coming up on September 21st, 2010, at the Reel Mix Hall, Radio Lagos/EKO FM. At the occasion we will be presenting prizes to 60 students chosen from 647 junior secondary schools in the six education districts of Lagos State, for having excelled in the Essay Competition with the title Religious Crises in Nigeria: Reasons and Solutions.
You are also encouraged to support our other works such as the Mid-year children’s prayer for peace and harmony, the student acquiring media skills (SAM), and several others.
Thank you. God bless you. Long Live Nigeria! Long Live Nigeria Air! May Peace Prevail on Earth. Peace. Shalom. KAYERO! KAYEROJU!!
Rev. (Dr.) Titus K. Oyeyemi.
Lagos (AFPLI) September 16, 2010.