2021: How to overcome challenges in the New Year, By Samson Ayokunle

2021: How to overcome challenges in the New Year, By Samson Ayokunle
CAN presdent, Ayokunle

Being 2021 new year message

Dwelling in the Secret Place of the Mist High: Key to Overcoming Challenges throughout the Year

I congratulate everyone of us whom God has spared to see this New Year in the midst of the dreadful and devastating coronavirus that ravaged our world and sent many people to early graves more than any war in the recent past. The high and the low really fell in 2020. While we again commiserate with those who lost their loved ones and pray for fortitude for them to bear the loss, it is right for the rest of us to say, ‘to God alone be the glory.’ My prayer is that, the God of mercy who showed us mercy in 2020 shall continue to show us mercy in this New Year in Jesus’ name. I may not know the challenges that you may be in this year but I know that the best way to overcome the challenges of this year without losing anything is to dwell in the ‘Secret Place of the Most High.’ This would cause us to abide under the shadow of the Almighty always according to Psalm 91, beginning from verse one. The whole Psalm is appropriate as our watchword to overcome all challenges of the year.

The secret place of the Most High is like the VIP lounge where important people stay in the airport. It is different from the common lounge where other travellers stay. It is equipped with better chairs for maximum comfort and with other services making waiting at the airport more comfortable.

I was reading in the newspaper the statement of Bill Gates who said that he could not explain why COVID-19 mortality was low in Africa generally where healthcare was poorer than the Developed World. The right answer is that dwelling in the secret place of the Most High saved Africa. We are technologically poor but we believe we have a big and great God whom we can trust, whom we can run to His secret place and abide under His shadow. The mercy of God made the difference in Africa, especially Nigeria where health experts predicted that 30 million people would die. I am not saying that the advanced nations of the world do not believe in God but that our own lack of human strength, lack of health infrastructure (though not our pride), have made us to trust in God more than human science and technology. The mercy of God has preserved us and will continue to preserve us all the days of our lives in the name of Jesus Christ.

The secret place of the Most High is like the VIP lounge where important people stay in the airport. It is different from the common lounge where other travellers stay. It is equipped with better chairs for maximum comfort and with other services making waiting at the airport more comfortable.

Dwelling in the ‘Secret Place of the Most High’ to overcome all challenges of this year means, to constantly love God by becoming closer to him in daily communion. To cultivate a lifestyle of fervent prayers for all things before taking any decision or doing anything. It is to study the Word of God daily, to constantly be in the fellowship of God’s people and forsaking all bad gangs or terrorist groups. It is to run away from the life of sin and abide by faith on daily basis for daily victory. Dwelling in the secret place of the Most High requires that we trust in the Lord with our whole heart without seeking lesser gods. If we do these, all the promises of protection, provision, elevation, long life and every other good thing would be our portion in the name of Jesus Christ.

Let us love one another and put an end to cruelty against one another under any guise. Nigerians deserve to have their rest of mind.

I plead with all of us to please observe all the COVID-19 protocols this year. Maintain social distancing, do hand washing or use sanitizer. Make sure you always wear your face mask whenever you are out from your house until we all together, under God, wipe away this wicked virus from the face of the earth. Avoid frivolous travelling meanwhile and use virtual meetings where possible for your safety.

I urge all those in political power in our nation to lead with humility by listening to Godly admonition because their wisdom alone may not be enough to reposition our nation, especially, to restore our security and bring about peace and prosperity presently eluding our nation. The present spate of kidnappings for ransom or death, terrorism, banditry, herdsmen attack, armed robbery and other anti-social activities in our nation are dents on the leadership of our nation. Though, we understand that leadership is tough and sympathise with those in power, Nigerians at the same time expect that leadership would rise more gallantly to address our near horrible socio-economic situation in this nation which is almost crippling us. Let us love one another and put an end to cruelty against one another under any guise. Nigerians deserve to have their rest of mind.

On behalf of Christian Association of Nigeria, I wish everyone in this nation a Happy, Prosperous and COVID-19 free New Year 2021 in Jesus’ name.

*Ayokunle is the President of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, and President, Nigerian Baptist Convention.