“Peradventure COVID-19 is a hailstone that could give Africa an advantage and we need to seize the opportunities it presents”, Pastor Mensa Otabil, General Overseer of the International Central Gospel Church has said.
He said, “The time to motivate Africa to raise captains of industry is here because a new opportunity has been opened.
Speaking at the annual Greater Works Conference, which is usually proceeded by 40 days of fasting and prayer, Pastor Mensa Otabil called on African leaders to seize the opportunity to position the continent to catch up with the rest of the world and bridge the developmental gap.
“This is not a time for discouragement, this is the time for encouragement because a door of opportunity has been opened to us”.
He challenged Africans to avoid a self-defeating mindset, but rather strive to increase wealth.
Pastor Otabil questioned how come the African continent appeared not to have been overrun by the coronavirus pandemic, as previously predicted, compared to other more endowed countries with superior health infrastructure?.
He said, having copiously read literature that seeks to explain the phenomenon with various theories, his only possible conclusion, albeit not scientific is that, God’s hand of mercy is on a people who comparatively seem to have nothing.
Pastor Otabil expressed the belief that God was telling the rest of the world that “this is Africa’s season and it is time for a shift”.
“This is the most important moment for Africa’s economic emancipation and the entrepreneurial empowerment of its young men and women”.
His message titled, “It’s Coming Down,” recalled the biblical account of God leading the Israelites through Joshua to defeat the Amorites by raining hailstones and yet protecting Israel.
Reading from Joshua chapter 10 v 7-14, he described how the passage used anthropomorphism – the use of human language to describe an act of God.
He said God routed the Amorites and moved them noisily to break and destroy their camp.
He said, the hailstones, though universally deployed, were intelligently manipulated to protect and give Israel an advantage.
Pastor Otabil said it is possible for Africa to use 25 years to catch up with development instead of 250 years as envisaged by experts.
“It is Africa’s time, a new generation is being born, the Joshua generation”
He expressed hope that the scourge where Africans disgracefully queue behind embassies to seek greener pastures will soon be over because the continent will soon come out of its 3rd world status.
“I believe in God and Africa that the same God who Joshua talked to extend time can shrink time,” he said.
This year’s Greater works conference was resized to three days from the usual 5-day event following measures announced to address the spread of coronavirus.
The church presbytery also cut down the service time to two hours in line with presidential directives and put together a strict adherence to Covid-19 safety protocols at the venue ground to ensure the safety of all members.