Being the Remarks by His Excellency, Seyi Makinde, the Executive Governor of Oyo State at the National Executive Retreat of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria on Tuesday, 15 August, 2023
I want to thank you for inviting me to the National Executive Retreat of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria. I appreciate this courtesy that you have extended to me because it gives me an opportunity to again share with the Body of Christ.
I particularly love the theme that you have chosen for this year’s event, “Going from Strength to Strength” because it represents where we should be as a nation. This theme reminds me of a book I read about 2 years ago. It is titled “Hand me Another Brick,” by Charles Swindoll. The book is built around the story of Governor Nehemiah and the task of repairing Jerusalem’s wall.
The Jews back then were able to finish building the wall in about 52 days. They were mocked and persecuted by the nations and leaders around them. A lot of their enemies said it was impossible to rebuild the wall, but Nehemiah joined the people and they rebuilt the wall in less than two months by going from strength to strength. They prayed about the task and God answered their prayers. But they also took actions. They rebuilt the wall one brick at a time.
Each time, I think about the rebuilding of that wall, I also think about the rebuilding of our nation and the role that the Body of Christ has to play in it. The Bible asks Christians to pray for their leaders. As Christians, we can carry out the work that God has assigned to us more effectively when there is political stability where we reside.
And here in Nigeria, every four years, we come together as a nation to choose our leaders. These leaders are a product of who the political parties present to us. When these leaders have been chosen, we are obligated to pray for them and work with them. As Paul wrote in 1 Timothy 2:1-2.
“I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people — for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.”
Yes, we must pray for those in authority. Politics is over, it is time for governance.
And if we don’t like those in authority, we have another opportunity in another four years to vote again. But in order to accomplish that, we must start from now to join political parties. We cannot become politicians when all the politics has been done.
Some people have queried the actions that some of us took during the last elections and they are passing judgement based on what they think ought to have happened and the results they would have preferred. The fact remains that we cannot be doing the same things, that is waiting for every four years before we get involved in politics and then expect different results. If we wait for four years then, we will be forced to choose from among those we have been presented and make decisions based on several factors.
For now, we must come together and support those in authority.
Remember, 1 Timothy 2:1-2, “I urge you that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all those in authority.”
God bless you all.
August 15, 2023