Tuesday, May 02, 2017

Reflections from my "encounter" with Daddy G.O. (Pastor E.A. Adeboye)

They say that if you see a tall tree standing, it means that it has a deep root. It is also true then that if you see an unusually tall tree standing, then it must have unusually deep root. The same could be said of us humans.

I often wonder when I observe great personalities what they did and still do that propelled them to the height they have attained. I wonder: what is it about these great people that distinguish them from the crowd? Observing from afar or simply reading about them sometimes may not reveal these unique things about them. Sometimes, you just need to “have a personal encounter” with them, and then it hits you unmistakably!

I would say I had such “personal encounter” on Easter Monday with one of the greatest men of our time, someone I admire a lot– Pastor E.A. Adeboye, the General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), widely known and fondly called “Daddy G.O.”

I spent much of Easter Monday (April 17) with other members of my Church as we embarked on a Retreat to the Redemption Camp, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway (that place is magnificent!). It was indeed a refreshing time, the kind of experience that lives with you forever! It wasn’t meant to be a “fun getaway”, no! It wasn’t a time to sight see, or be wowed by the almost unbelievable work going on at the Redemption Camp (with the near completion of the enormous 3km by 3km new auditorium). Nah! It was none of these! It was a spiritual exercise; a separation from the “busyness” of everyday life to seek definite answers to lingering problematic issues in our lives, which made the Redemption Camp fitting. (Answers, don’t we all need them?). It was perfect way to spend the holiday if you ask me!

We had a prayer session in the new auditorium, before we headed to the Open Heavens International Centre (OHIC), on Holiness Road, also on Redemption Camp.

For those who may not know, the Open Heavens International Centre (OHIC) is the first house Pastor Adeboye lived in on Redemption Camp. Segments of the OHIC include a conference/welcoming room (where Pastor Adeboye welcomes visitors via a recorded video), a gallery showcasing his life and times, awards and honours; his bedroom as well as that of his wife (Pastor Folu Adeboye, fondly called Mummy G.O), his prayer room (where visitors are allowed to pray for some minutes), his personal library (with Daddy G.O’s sermon notes from as far back as 1981! No kidding, I saw one with my eyes!), a souvenir shop where tens of his books are sold (I honestly didn’t know Daddy G.O had authored that many books!), as well as a testimony room. You should totally visit the centre.

The OHIC tour turned out to be more than I imagined. I gained insight into Daddy G.O’s life! I would say I "met" him personally here. More than that, I was inspired! I gleaned wisdom. I was challenged. There are lots of lessons to learn from Daddy G.O’s life, some you probably already know.
I saw my own failings…my own inadequacies. I saw I was not living up to my full potentials. I saw I could be much, much more than I am. I could do much more than I am. I saw that nothing, I mean absolutely nothing, in form of an obstacle is big or strong enough to stop you from achieving anything as long as you can dream it. I saw that there is no height God is not prepared to elevate the man that would walk with Him.

As I reflect on the whole experience, one lesson sticks out for me – you can achieve anything if you want it badly enough.

These questions/ thoughts have challenged me as I reflect on the experience: how hungry am I to fulfil my lofty dreams?
Do I want it bad enough that I am ready to give it all that it requires and more?
How much do I want to fulfil God’s big dreams for me?
Is my desire to become great big and deep enough?
Do I really have that burning desire? That burning desire that consumes every and any obstacle on the way?

It is one thing to want something, but it is an entirely different thing to be hungry enough for that thing to the point that you are prepared to give all it requires and more to have it! That is the key trait I reckon stands Daddy G.O out! Pastor Adeboye, I gleaned, is a man that’s ready to give his all in the pursuit of a goal, driven by a burning desire that will not take ‘no’ for an answer. He has that attitude that does not believe the existence of the word “impossible”. Besides, impossible is an opinion, not fact!

Many of us claim we want to achieve greatness, we say we want to fulfil purpose, we want to achieve our lofty dreams, but are we ready and willing to give all that is required to make those dreams reality?

This trait is what separates the average from those who go on to attain greatness.
This attitude is evident throughout the life of Daddy G.O – from when he was a young lad who wanted to get an education even though he was well aware his parents could not afford it; so much so that that he starved for three straight days just to get his wish, to his incredible drive to make it to the sports team in university (University of Nigeria, Nsukka) so he could benefit from the free accommodation and tuition the sports boys and girls enjoyed (as that was his only “ticket” to remaining in school).

Even now that he seems the man is all accomplished, he still has that drive, that burning desire and he pursues every goal with all he’s got! The nearly complete 3km by 3km new auditorium (which is absolutely mind blowing!) on the camp ground is testament to his drive in recent times. What seemed a mere dream a few years ago has become reality!

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