APRIL 16, 2020

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Mission To Alako


Alako is a village we had never visited in our 20 years of evangelical outreaches. It is located about one kilometer to the southwest of Idigba, a more prominent village about 10 kilometers north of the Immanuel College Chapel, Ibadan, our base.

It was Sunday march 8. Although coronavirus had made a touchdown in Lagos via an Italian, who was destined for Ewekoro in Ogun State, not many Nigerians foresaw the implications nationally or globally at that point. So we left the chapel premises around 2pm and headed for Alako, led by our Chaplain, Very Revd Ebenezer Idowu Ariyo and our Assistant Chaplain the Very Revd Joseph Ayodele. On arrival at the village a handful of people were already waiting under huge leafy trees, African Cherry (Agbalumo) with its tasty fruit when in season. But the real “industrial” base of the village is the production and sale of palm oil and palm kernel for which it is well known.

Word soon went round that the Mission Team from Ibadan had arrived and a stream of people came in reaching 90 midway into the outreach.

The theme of the message, delivered by Very Revd Ayodele, was “Profit In Praying”. It is certainly profitable to pray. Otherwise Jesus would not have set time aside, early in the morning, to pray to the Father, Mark 1:35. He was alone when He prayed. Many people were already looking for Him because they wanted Him to solve their problems, which nobody else could solve. Jesus knew.

He was a problem-solver but He wanted to draw strength from His Father who sent Him to the world, John 5:17. He wanted direction. He wanted power, the power to do good, not the power to destroy. Which is why He did not drive away the leper who approached Him asking to be healed. Rather He touched and healed him instantly. That is power, the power which flows from divine compassion, not some kind of selfish motive, Mk. 1:40-44.

So prayer is profitable. The disciples of Jesus have probably seen the impact of prayer in the life of their master and in the life of John the Baptist too, which led them to ask Jesus to teach them how to pray, Lk. 11:1.

So we too must always pray. Prayer is the christian staff to walk with God. This is why Jesus encourages us to pray, telling christians to ask for their needs and assuring them that the Father would answer their prayers, Matt. 7:7-9, Jer. 33:3.

But we are not supposed to be selfish when we pray. We must pray for others who are also in need. Those needs may be the same or different from ours. Sickness, lack, poverty, insecurity – these are challenges affecting individuals, organizations and even the nation. We must ask for God’s intervention for those in need of help. Remember that God is the only reliable source of help, Ps. 46:1. If you look up to a human being for help the person may fail you but God will not disappoint you, Ps. 121: 1-2.    

If you sense that the answer to your prayer is delayed you may add fasting. Remember that God does not slumber nor sleep. He will attend to you at the right time. However when delay turns into denial God is not to blame. He does not listen to sinners, Isaiah 59:1-2. So at all times believers must examine themselves, to ensure that they seek forgiveness of sin and turn a new leaf.

At the end of the sermon the villagers were requested to pick from the large volume of clothes donated by the Hope Foundation of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Jesus House, Baltimore, USA.

Our Chaplain, Very Revd Idowu Ariyo, gave the closing prayer and benediction.




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