Taking a walk down my street, I am amazed at the number of churches that occupy it and yet more are still springing up. Every available space, shop or warehouse is converted to a place of worship. Each church which its own loudspeaker competing with the other begging to be heard or just contributing to noise pollution. By definition, a church is a building for public Christian worship. Basically, a place where all believers gather to worship and serve their maker .People are faced with different challenges and run helter skelter to find solutions. The church has proven to be a solution provider hence some dubious people have turned it to money making venture resorting to all forms of schemes be it hypnotizing, witchcraft, occultism and other evil plots to exploit their followers.
The other day I was in the saloon patiently waiting for my turn along with two other women-one obviously married and the other probably not. Trust women and gossip, the issue was about pastors and how they are duping gullible followers. This discussion came about as a result of the stylist opening later than usual. Her reason was that she went to church first before coming to work. The two ladies present had scolded her and had pointed out her nonchalant attitude towards her business. According to them, business first then others follow after all that was what put money on her table. However, the stylist did not claim defeat as she defended her action; she had told them that God was the giver of life and good things like health and that if such things were missing in her life then who would be available to render the services that they needed. This little argument had regenerated to take a new form as stories of personal encounters with so called men of God were recalled. I decided to be a listener rather than a contributor.
As much as I have reference for Pastors, I would however admit that going into ministry has proven to be a lucrative venture aside politics. The intending pastor does not need to have a PhD in Psychology rather he/she must understand the art of how the human mind works and apply common sense and every other thing follows. I don’t want to sound judgmental but it quite obvious that many have been led astray, hypnotized and duped all in the name of seeking salvation or one form of breakthrough or the other.
What is even more pathetic is the level of moral decadence in the society-armed robbery is still on the increase, corruption has eaten deep into the society, people still nurse selfish ambitions and think less of their neighbours, parents no longer their monitor their children and wards, the youths are over-zealous to make quick money; they do not believe in hard work anymore, indecent dressing has been the order of the day which in turn brings about cases of rape and other social vices. Recently, a new trend which has taken over the headlines is the rate of kidnapping. People are no longer safe in their homes and environment yet we have so many churches preaching morals and the kingdom lifestyle or are they only focusing on prosperity and giving alone.
Truth be told, we all need prayers and can not stop getting enough but must we rely on solely people who claim to be anointed for the laying of hand and prayers before we believe things would go well. There have been reported cases of pastors who belong to occults, sleep with their congregations and encourage satanic behaviours. I t is high time the essence of religion is practiced and not capitalized on .I am not against the propagation of the gospel but what I consider disturbing the rate at which churches spring up for generating income yet there is so much ill in the society. A famous Nigerian artiste in his song “wonder” was quoted to be saying people are suffering and the pastor lives are getting better…and that whether would Jesus ever come. It is not an uncommon sight to see so-called pastors drive jeeps while their members trek to church. Religion be it Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Judaism, Rastafarian or as the case may be all boils down with a personal conviction of one maker. It is a personal walk though there is need for fellowship with other believers. Every person would be judged accordingly and individually not collectively. With so much deceit circulating it would be wise for a believer to be careful in the decision he/she makes concerning his/her place of worship and service to God. It is best to dissect every word preached and cross check the bible for any contradiction. People should also remove the mentality of worshipping their pastors –they are not gods only instruments in the hand of God. Members should also strive to be worthy vessels in the house of God for His glory.
Religion’s motive was to instill morals and preach peace and love towards humanity but the reverse is the case because it appears to have been taken to another level by so-called fanatics. It is one of the causes of discord, war and unfair treatment to humans and even killings. By definition, religion is a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature and purpose of the universe especially when considered as the creation of a superhuman agency or agencies usually involving devotional and ritual observances and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs. Going by this, it should on its own instill some check and discipline in the society to bring about peace.