Presbyterian charges mothers to be bold and courageous
The Women’s Desk Coordinator, The Presbyterian Church of Nigeria, Rev. Mrs. Deborah Emem Akan has congratulated all women of Presbyterian Church of Nigeria and mothers on their Mothering Sunday, last week.
She said they should remember God’s kindness to mothers and the church, and bear in mind the admonition of 2019 General Assembly theme: ‘Be strong and courageous’ taken from Joshua 1:8 and the Women’s Guild sub-theme, ‘Woman: Be Bold and Courageous,’ also taken from Joshua 1:8.
According to her, there is no better time to be bold and courageous than now. She said: “The persecution of the Church in our dear nation is enough to intimidate and terrify us. The communal clashes in various parts of our nation pose a great challenge to the faith of our mothers. Conflicts and local wars are posing a threat to Church growth and unity. As mothers, we are torn between yielding to traditional and cultural practices of the demands of war, and standing firm in the faith. This is why the command, ‘Be bold and Courageous,’ is particularly relevant in these contemporary times.
“The spirit of fear of men (phobia) is not from God, and it can immobilise and torment its victims, making them feel powerless and alone (1 John 4:18). Indecision or wrong decisions are then made, which could give place to bondage and great human suffering. The reverential awe or fear of God is constructive. The fear of man brings a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe’ (Prov. 29: 25). The Scriptures enjoin us to fear (reverence) God.”
The Coordinator also enjoined mothers to emulate Deborah, Esther and Ruth, among others, who demonstrated boldness and courage in their Christian faith. “Sisters, do you have passion for the Christian faith like these women,” she asked. “Do you love the Lord as the sinful woman in Luke 7:36-50? In these contemporary times of terrorism, conflicts (even in the Church) inter-tribal wars and communal clashes, can you rise up and say no to obnoxious cultural practices. Can you be an effective peace advocate, regardless of a lack of identity like the woman in Judges 9: 53?
“Beloved, you cannot be a peace advocate if you are not bold and courageous, and without being armed with the Word you cannot demonstrate these qualities. ‘Being a peace agent means ‘bending over backwards’ to accommodate people. ‘If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men’ (Romans 12: 18).
“We are enjoined to eliminate hate speeches, and eschew scheming and destructive criticisms. My sincere prayer is that God’s grace will be available for us to operate in gentility and wisdom, as we demonstrate boldness and courage, knowing that God’s abiding presence is always with as many as put their trust in Him.
“As we celebrate motherhood today (last Sunday), may we remember to be peace advocates and peace agents in our Church, in our immediate families, in our extended families, in our communities, in our nation and in the world.”
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