Ode: A long walk from boardroom to the pulpit
Isaac Olamide Ode is the General Overseer, Perfect Healing and Miracle Ministries. He spoke to GREGORY AUSTIN NWAKUNOR on his walk to Christendom after years of being in the boardroom of so many multi million naira companies
After presiding over a multimillion-naira trade and import business as Chairman/CEO, Resurge Resources Limited, Lagos for three decades, Isaac Olamide Ode, dumped the boardroom for the altar. “Heeding the call of God was difficult,” he said, but to him, this still remains the best decision ever taken, “because it offered me a golden opportunity to serve God and humanity, faithfully.”
In 2010, he received the call of God to serve with a clear mandate for ‘care and healing.’ “I was hesitant and confused about how to start off the ministry as I was not only a novice in pastoral work, but was least prepared for such an assignment from God,” he said. “But, in order to be spiritually ready for the big task ahead, he did a programme on Spiritual Gift Discovery and Development at the Mountain of Fire and Miracle Ministries in 2011 as a foundation for his pastoral work.”
For Ode, “it’s great to be a Christian, but it is greater to be a born again Christian. If you want to live a prosperous life, take away your hands from unholy things and sinful life, for it is written ‘Be you holy for I’m holy’, that’s God telling his people. Christians should abide by this, if they do, there is peace and joy that will follow, otherwise, it is said that the wages of sin is death, let Christians live a holy life devoid of corruption, sin and wickedness.”
As he was going through the battle of leading a ministry, worries about his business empire began to dominate his thought.“Many times, I had wondered how I would be leaving all of these business activities and networks for a ministry I wasn’t prepared for. Remember that I had offices in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Cotonou, and Guangzhou in China. And I was serving as director in some companies. So, I met some men of God from where a new chapter of my life started. Then I began to realise that what God has placed before me is greater than the personal things I was doing for myself. Now, God has called me to take care of so many people in the entire world spiritually rather than the few people I thought I was helping before,” Ode noted.
He, however, made a pledge to God, assuring Him of his total commitment and loyalty to his new found faith. What convinced him about God’s plan was the event of August 18, 2010, in a hotel room in Congo Brazzaville. “I came back to Africa from China where I had signed contracts of supplies of solid minerals worth over 6 billion naira and it was to be a repeat order. I was trying to arrange production and supply with miners in Africa when the appointed day came without me thinking of it because I did not understand the meaning of the message at the two earlier stages. I tried to rest late evening in a Brazzaville hotel room when the booming voice of the Lord came amidst a very powerful brightness of light and I heard: “Son, Son, Son, what you wanted I have done for you. Besides, I have done much more for you. Henceforth, you will take care of people around, you will lay hands upon the sick and they will recover. Start from your office.”
According to him, “When God gave me the command, He said, “ I will bless people and will lay my hand on people and they will recover. So, the church was named Perfect Healing Miracle Church. Our primary mission is to spread the message of God to people. On my call, I made a pledge to God that the ministry will organise an event every year, which will include training of local priests and we did some things on demography, including the number of churches and priests. I asked questions like why is the place so deeply engrossed in evil acts? Why are people not on the side of God? I have a programme where I train priests at a seminary.”
Ode said, “the role of spiritual leader must be well mapped out. It is to continue to preach the message of love which is the gospel and which spiritual leaders have been doing. Occasionally, there are some, which have deviated, but the major role of spiritual leaders is to teach the gospel and cater for the people spiritually. Give leadership to people and restore hope and make people to come back to God.”
He continued, “at a time, I used to bring all the priests to Lagos to train them, so at a stage, because of the financial burden, we would hold a conference and train them there. This is in addition to the crusade we hold at the beginning. That crusade was all embracing and we do health programmes along with revival.”
Ode, the General Overseer, Perfect Healing and Miracle Ministries, said, “He showed me as a screen bearing ‘Your incorruptible No 18’. This kept on showing on the screen like television for some time until it stuck. Waking up, I realised it was a divine message, whose meaning I did not know for a long time. I even thought it was a power point, which I could have staked in gambling at Macao, a mere two-hour road drive from where I was in China.”
On getting back home, he and his workers about 17 or 18 of them, (a number that came down from 57 member of staff before recession) started praising God at least for an hour every week day and whenever he is opportuned.
Ode believes that since he went into full-time care and healing ministry, in 2013, things have not been the same again. He said, “God has been very faithful to me and the ministry, ‘doing many signs and wonders by my hand. He has delivered many and restored many through me.”
For three weeks, he had a premonition of imminent disaster. Yet, there was also a feeling that something good was about to happen. “Each night, I could not sleep more than an hour. I would wake up trembling with fear. Even though I prayed, the feeling was persistently growing such that I was now afraid to sleep. This was so until that fateful Monday in the last week of August 2008. That week, our memory verse in our work place devotion was Psalm118 vs 17 ‘I shall not die but I shall live to recount the good deeds of the Lord’. He said: “God had also made me listen to Sunday Sermon of a man of God, which theme was ‘Kill the enemy that wants to destroy you at the point of breakthrough’.”
He was on board a flight with about 300 passengers. It was during summer and the flight was fully booked. “I was to connect for China at Addis-Ababa and just about 20 minutes to landing, for three consecutive times, the plane got into terrible nose diving kind of turbulence that shook the plane. People lost hope. Some wept whilst others made their last minutes confession. Reinforced by the memory verse and the sermon of the previous day, I stood like a ‘general’ making decree for our survival. Miraculously, the plane landed safely and I had a guard of honour at Addis Ababa,” he said.
He also explained his encounter in the city of Guangzhou during one of his business trips. “I was totally disoriented, such that I did not know how I lost some money and my phone between the Airport and my hotel. I was in this condition when a day later, I bought an i-Pad from a Chinese boy on the street. He was gone soon after I paid him cash unknown to me what he sold to me was a defective reject, thrown off in factory. Meanwhile, a feeling of guilt started growing inside of me. I felt I was an accomplice to theft and considered myself a sinner who had aided someone to steal and the guy will go and steal again,” he noted.
While nursing that feeling of guilt, he abandoned his dinner. “I also took the decision to restitute back home in Lagos, confess to my staff and destroy the i-Pad.
That was how I had my first dramatic encounter with the Lord. In my sleep, some light much brighter than daylight shone round my hotel room as I heard:‘Son, Son, Son, now, I know how much you fear me that you would humiliate yourself to your staff for the sake of my name. Be sure, that I am in your life till the end of time”. Then the bright light disappeared He the Lord, was gone.’ Thereafter, I found that something representing His presence has always been with me I want to compare it to the Ark. But, it is golden and stays before me always,” he said.
He said God’s healing would come to China that is battling Corona virus attack, if the authorities of China are made to be aware that there is a God who can heal them. His words: “In China, somebody needs to reach out to them and tell them about God. Someone should reach out to them that God could eliminate the Corona Virus. It has been done before in 2014. With my experience with Ebola, it was purely an act of God that stopped Ebola. Nigerian government didn’t do more than other afflicted nations of West Africa, and it went on for a prolonged period and God appeared to me and said ‘Son, for your sake, I’ll take away Ebola from Nigeria’.”
He is also not happy with the state of insecurity in the country. He said, “it is an unfortunate one and everyone including our leaders must see it that way. It’s also a sign that God is angry with Nigerians and a call to do a revival and a re-dedication. If the country has been led away from the path of God, which is the cause of what we are seeing, then our leaders must embrace God in a way that we can stem all of these that is going on. Kidnapping, cattle rustling, assassination and all, these are things that happen in an ungodly situation. Again what we have is a consequence of reckless corruption, abandonment of social security of the populace and aggrandisement of the leaders. It means we have to come back to God in persistence and ask for forgiveness.”