Time spent serving God not a waste!
With recent happenings all over the world, which tend to portray the devil as having the upper hand in world affairs, some people are beginning to wonder whether serving God is not a waste of time after all, as there seems to be nothing tangible to show for it. To this category of people, the many hours spent going for worship on Sundays and days lost to holidays during Christmas, Easter and New Year, among others, should be better deployed to more fruitful endeavours. Is serving God really a waste of time? CHRIS IREKAMBA reports.
‘Most People Spend Many Hours Of Their Lives Working From Monday To Friday’
(Rev. Ben Eragbai, General Overseer of Divine Appointment Ministry, Lagos)
How many hours do we spend in the church? Most people work assiduously from Monday to Friday and even Saturdays. That is where they spend huge portion of their lives and not in the church. In the church, for instance, some of us don’t spend more than two hours and we’re back home. This is just an attack against the church. For somebody to say our serving God is not reflecting in our lives is baseless. For instance, I used to be a bad guy in the 80s, when I was at the University of Benin. But since I gave my life to Christ, I am now contributing positively to the growth of society. But today, most of my mates are still roaming the streets without hope because the so-called white-collar jobs are no longer available.
I know many Christian leaders, who have raised so many people that are now self-employed. Through skill acquisition, we teach people how to be self-sufficient because government has failed the people. We create jobs and make people entrepreneurs and many of these people are business owners today. What is happening to the church today is orchestrated by some politicians just to divide the people of God on religious line.
For instance, Muslims and Christians used to live together as brothers and sisters. We still do, but since politicians came into the mainstream, they started raising all kinds of discrimination against one another. Of course, some of these things are being sponsored. Can you imagine somebody saying we are wasting time serving God? If there were no churches, do you think there would be a nation called Nigeria? It is in the church that people’s nerves are calmed down because politicians have disappointed them. People are frustrated.
How many people did GSM companies and banks sacked recently? Where are those people and what are they doing with their time? But when they come to us, we let them know there is hope, while the politicians are busy stealing their hope. With all the resources in Nigeria, what have politicians done with them? I’m a pastor and I know how many widows are on my payroll every quarter. We have to give them money for their children’s school fees because they cannot access our politicians. Many youths are angry because of what politicians are doing. They want to take laws into their hands, but our preaching has always calmed them down and one individual is out there, saying that serving God is a waste.
The other time, it was the issue of tithe. But they don’t know that the church is doing a lot to keep many youths out of the streets, otherwise, it would have been more terrible than what we are seeing. People should channel their energies toward correcting our politicians, who are always making promises they will never fulfil. Most of the things churches are doing are often not reported, announced or advertised for people to see. But secretly, we do them because we know the God we are serving.
‘Spending Seven To Eight Hours At Beer Parlours/Social Engagements Is Not Wasteful?’
(Pastor Eliashib Ime-James, Senior Pastor, The Gospel House Church/Christ Publishers Ministry, Ogba, Lagos)
IF serving God today is a waste, then life itself is a mirage. Those who speak such trash are agents of the anti-Christ, who are preparing grounds for the unleashing of years of damnation rule by the devil. Their aim is to water down people’s belief in God by making worshipping of God look like a waste of time. How can spending three to four hours in church cumulatively in a week, be a waste, yet, spending seven to eight hours (cumulatively) at beer parlours or social engagements is not wasteful? They want to rubbish God, I am sorry for them.
‘Those That Have No Time For God Are Under A Curse’
(Dr. Francis Akin- John, President, Church Growth International Ministries)
First and foremost, serving God or worshipping of Jehovah Almighty is a personal thing. Worshipping God is an individual decision. You don’t worship or serve God by compulsion. It is a freewill thing that is personal to everyone. And when you worship God genuinely, sincerely or in Spirit and Truth, (John 4:23,24) as the scripture says, is not a waste.
Secondly, nations, people, tribes and communities of people that do not have time for the worship of God are under a curse (Psalm 9:17).
God desires that people, groups and communities of nations should worship Him in Spirit and Truth. Without true worship of God, nations and groups of people are in trouble.
Thirdly, the problem we have in this part of the world is simply because our serving God is mostly insincere. Most people take time to attend places of worship, not because their motive is genuine, but because we want to use God for our own ends. We purport to serve God on our own terms, wanting our own ways and not conforming to what it really means to serve God. Most people that claim to be serving God today don’t exemplify the qualities of godly people. That’s why it appears that serving God is a waste today.
Our nation is not making progress today, because people are not taking time to serve God. In fact, we will be worse off, if there are no genuine people serving the Lord in spirit and truth. However, our nation is not progressing simply because of leadership challenges. Our nation needs leaders that serve God in spirit and truth. Such leaders will lead well and have the nation’s interest at heart.
‘Too Many Religious Festivals Hinder Economic Growth’
(Pastor Tom Okonkwo, General Overseer, Resurrection Power of God Ministry, Lagos)
The whole duty of man on earth is: “Thou shall love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” This is the first and great commandment, Mathew 22:37-38”. This is New Testament teaching of Jesus Christ, our Lord, which lends credence to King David’s way of fellowship with God in Psalm 27:4 (Living Bible) “one thing I want and seek most of all is the privilege of meditating in His temple, living in His temple, every day of my life, delighting in His incomparable affections and glory… there I will be, when trouble comes He will hide and set me high on a rock.” Can you see that you are privileged to be a true worshipper of God in His sanctuary? No matter how much people despise you about it, just be sure your intentions are genuine before God.
One may be tempted to ask the question, since King David was in the temple daily, was he able to accomplish the goals as a king and a priest? Or did he fail in his duty as a king? The answer is a resounding no. He succeeded. He still found time to fight and conquered all his enemies and even extended the frontiers of his kingdom and was able to hand over a peaceful and prosperous nation of Israel to his son and successor, Solomon. How many of our past leaders have been able to achieve such a feat, even when they claimed to be practically living and sleeping in the presidential palace working, not daily living inside the mosque or church?
It is not how much time we spend in the church or mosque or places of worship, it is not even how much time we spend in the place of work that really matters. The question should be, how much quality time do we spend in a given assignment or duty? Majority of the worshippers in these religious organisations are fake. For example, most Christians are mainly church-goers. Therefore, the number of times you pray in a day, or the number of days you spend in a church or mosque does not matter. Except you are spiritually transformed and it reflects in your daily living, you cannot be termed a true Christian. In Nigeria for example, ritual killings, armed robbery, kidnapping, herdsmen killing farmers, cattle rustlers doing their own thing, debauchery, political thuggery, 419 and other vices abound. The reason is simple. It is either the preachers are not preaching the correct word or the hearers are not living the word. What a contradiction?
Now to such religious festivals as Christmas, Easter, New Year, etc. What is in a New Year day? Is there any difference between January 1st and every other day? Does the sun shine brighter and in a more special way on New Year day? Is the New Year day longer than 24 hours? Does a person suddenly grow taller on a New Year day? So many questions begging for answers. In Genesis 1, everyday is the same as created by God.
So many religious festivals hinder economic growth in the nation. They do not even add to people’s spiritual growth. They are mostly days of wild orgies and debauchery. It appears the more the festivals, the deeper the people sink into sin. If the clouds be full of rain they empty themselves upon the earth, Eccl 11:39 But most of these festivals are empty, offering nothing to the people. Ecc 3:1-8 teaches us that there is time for everything, a time to pray and a time to work, even a time to rest from work. You cannot run away from any.
In conclusion, Ecc 12:13-14 says, “Fear God and keep His commandments for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it will be good or whether it will be evil.”
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