It gives me great pleasure and joy to extend my warmest regards to you all.
We have come to the end of another eventful year that truly tested our strengths and weaknesses; measures our faith in God and stretched our limits beyond what we all could have imagined.
Despite the daunting challenges, we were able to weather the storm and have emerged even stronger and can be counted among people of strong character and unwavering faith.
As we prepare to usher a brand new year 2015, I urge all Nigerians especially Christian faithful to brace up for the challenges ahead of us both as individuals and as a nation.
As we reflect on the events of the past year and look forward to the times ahead, I want us to concentrate on the issue of overcoming. In this light, it is important to emphasize the postulate that all challenges are timely, and they are not accidental.
God tests us in such ways to enable realize his greatness. You cannot realize the real value of your life if you have not compared it to something. God sends us trials so that we could understand the deepness of His goodwill and love.
No one is alone until he has his faith. The Bible has such words: ?God withdrew from him, in order to test him, that He might know all that was in his heart? (Chronicles 32:31 NKJ).
So, you see that even in His withdrawal, God is always with us. Sending us trials and challenges, He wants to demonstrate us the real power we have inside, the real power he gave us. Often we fail to use it properly, because we don?t know how strong we are.
In order to help us see our values He assigned us to, He sends us trials. There is no sense in crying over the trouble ? ?the best way out is always through, you should not concentrate on your problems, but rather on the way how to solve them. Look forward, because life is beautiful, and God created it for us.
?That which does not kill us makes us stronger? ? these words of the famous philosopher demonstrate that we are the instruments in the hands of God. Remember, how many times you thought that this was the hardest thing you?ve ever done. Then you experience something even harder, and you understand that you became stronger. Now you can endure even more. This is the eternal process of human development.
I have dwelt on these words of encouragement because I want all Nigerians to approach this New Year with a renewed sense of vigor and the understanding that we all must work for the kind of society that we desire to have. If we want peace and prosperity then we must work for it and not lament over the challenges.
But all these will not be possible if we continue to stay away from God or desist from doing his will in our small areas of jurisdiction, we must therefore approach everything in this year, first of all by inviting God?s presence to lead that particular venture and secondly by approaching it with a positive mind. That is the spirit that will lead Nigeria to the promise land.
Nigerians must learn to support their leaders in prayers and physical support in this New Year and above all things we must all exhibit love and sacrifice for ourselves and our nation in our collective quest of a better Nigeria beginning from 2015.
Many have alluded to the fact that the 2015 general elections would throw Nigeria into chaos but as a man of faith I see the election as Nigeria?s turning point.
Leaders must be wise and courageous in their decisions in this coming year because as it has already been known the challenges are becoming multifaceted from insecurity to crashing oil prices and many others.
But I see a lot of positives and opportunities in the midst of these challenges and that is what I want Nigerians to absorb in their hearts; the year 2015 may seem quite challenging for Nigeria but it is one that equally holds a lot of hope and promise that could lead to the fulfillment that we have all yearned for.
So I disagree with the wide spread projections about 2015 whether in terms of security, infrastructure, politics and the economy; man is not God, I believe that 2015 might just be that year in which Nigeria?s socio-economic revolution will be actualized.
I reserve special accolade for gallant men and women in the battle ground, may their efforts to secure a one, united and peaceful nation never be in vain.
For our youths, women, the aged and all Nigerians, I wish them well in this New Year and pray that Almighty God grant our individual and collective desires as we enter the New Year.
May God bless us all.
Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor
President Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN)