Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State has charged Nigerians to resist the temptations of speaking evil of the country and its leaders.
The governor gave the advice on Wednesday at the opening of the Standing Committee of the Church of Nigeria; Anglican Communion at St. Peter’s Cathedral Church, Asaba.
The session, which was chaired by the Primate of the church, the Most Rev. Nicholas OKoh, had as its theme as “Fight the Good Fight of Faith.”
The governor said that words were spiritual and that through faith the country could be transformed.
He said that there was a need for the church to teach its followers how to release faith unto good works.
He said many children of God were good at praying and exercising their faith for finances, healing, children and material blessings but lacked faith to pray for the country and its leaders for transformation.
“I conclude my brief remarks by noting that we need to also teach the flock to release their faith for the purpose of national development and peaceful coexistence among Nigerians.
“We are not often as determined and steadfast in exercising faith for a transformed Nigeria as we are when it comes to our personal needs.
“When it comes to politics and governance we must also embrace – and exercise – the spiritual discipline of walking by faith, not by sight.
“Hence, we must resist the temptation, no matter how strong, to join those in the habit of continually condemning and speaking evil of the country and its leaders.
“It is impossible for us to pray right and then speak wrong. What happens after prayer is as important, if not more important, than the actual prayer.
“Our words as Christians are powerful. Negative words carry the power to invalidate our prayers and derail our expectations.
“So, let us all take heed and begin today to speak healing, peace, prosperity, progress and accelerated development to Nigeria,” Mr Okowa said.
In his address, Mr Okoh decried the increasing level of insecurity in the country and urged the government to direct the fight towards the sponsors of the heinous crime against the people.
He charged government at all levels to urgently implement the approved new minimum wage to address the plight of workers.
Mr Okoh charged the government to create conducive environment for the businesses to thrive, fix the economy, power, transportation system and diversify the economy to ensure peace in the polity.
“Posterity will not forgive us if we forget Leah Sharibu, the Chibok girls and many others in the captivity of Boko Haram and others.
“Our youths today have become tools in the hands selfish privileged few because of idleness.
“Reviving the economy is one viable solution to sustainable development that will keep majority of Nigerian youths in the country,’’ he said.
The primate said the theme of the meeting concerned all, adding that, “Good Fight of Faith” demanded spiritual discernment.
“We must beware of obstacles to victory like greed, selfishness ambition, division, sin, heretic doctrines and the likes.
“The Bible admonishes that “nothing is done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself,” Mr Okoh said.
The host bishop, the Rt. Rev Justus Mogekwu, in an address of welcome, thanked everyone and the Standing Committee for giving Delta the opportunity to host the meeting.
He said the times were challenging and that all Christians must brace to the fight and not succumb to trials.
According to him, the threats in the world today point to the fact that time is running out.
He said that insecurity and what was happening even to the Church was a sign that the devil had penetrated the Church.
Mr Mogekwu, however, charged Christians to remain steadfast and use the Bible as the standard to uphold the truth.
Following the opening, the Standing Committee will go into technical sessions until Friday.