“The promise of God is to make you one with a difference!”
An awesome report on the uniqueness that characterises the ministry of Pastor TB Joshua, as reflected in the way he celebrated his birthday of recent…
STILL UNUSUAL AT 46!
Pastor Temitope Balogun Joshua, founder of The Synagogue Church of All Nations, Ikotun, marked his 46 years of existence recently in an unusual manner that leaves many still asking questions…
Pastor Temitope Joshua of The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations (SCOAN), Ikotun-Egbe, Lagos, is a man whose life is filled with a lot of mysteries. The mysteries surrounding his life may not be detached from the unusual way he does most of his things. For many who have been following his sojourn in the vineyard of God when he emerged some years back, TB Joshua is not known to follow the crowd or go the way of others in preaching the Gospel.
Sometime in 1997, he was invited by some churches in Ghana for a crusade. After preaching in one of the days of the crusade and it was time for healing, rather than stay on the platform like most Nigerian pastors who had visited the country used to do, he moved into the crowd for the healing exercise. He once told this magazine that he had learnt right from his youth not to go with the crowd in carrying out the mandate that he said God gave him.
While other churches are competing for spaces along the Lagos-Ibadan expressway to establish camps, Joshua would rather stay in Ikotun to propagate the gospel and help the people. While many pastors prefer Europe and America for their exploits, the Arigidi-Akoko born preacher would settle for Asia to preach his message. Again, while most churches are venturing into the business of establishing universities, the man in the Synagogue would concentrate on taking care of the destitute, the needy and the poor.
“What God has commissioned me to do here is to care for the people – the destitute, the needy and the poor. So the church here can have a Theology School. That is all. I should not dabble into the issue of University. Theology, from Primary School to University, that is my calling,” he once said.
This philosophy of being unique in style was what probably informed the unusual manner he celebrated his 45th birthday on June 12th 2008. When Nigerians were commemorating the annulment of the most free and fair election ever held in the history of nation at different fora, the man in the synagogue gathered the poor and the needy in his expansive Ikotun-Egbe church to fete with him. No society big-wig was invited. Presidents of nations, who had once paid him visits were left out of the show. Even those he said requested him to invite them to the occasion were humbly turned down. However, his followers and admirers alike from across the globe sent birthday greetings, expressing their love and firm belief in his message, and wishing him more prosperous years in the temple of God.
For him, “this is not the time to celebrate ourselves,” he told a crowd of journalists at the event, explaining that “it is the time to celebrate those out there; the poor, the orphans, the lepers, the widows, the aged. It is time to put quality smiles on their faces.”
These categories of people are the neglected in the society. Joshua dedicated this year’s anniversary of his 46 years of existence purposely to lift their spirit and give them a sense of love and care. It was indeed a day to celebrate the needy. The chairs and tables were beautifully decorated and arranged in a manner that befits only the rich and the well-to-do. Apart from feeding them, scholarships worth N6million were also given to indigent children while trailer loads of rice worth millions of Naira were distributed to the widows and other less privileged people that graced the occasion.
For many of the less privileged people who benefitted from TB Joshua’s philanthropy on that day, they could only wish that God would grant him more years on the surface of the earth form them to continue receiving God’s abundant blessing through him. This is more so that the society in which they live seem to care less about their plights, and for a man to dedicate his life to giving them succour, nothing could be more worthy than divine guidance for such.
By Sulaimon Alamutu
SOURCE: The Week Magazine – Vol. 27, No. 20