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In 2015, I was working on a song that I had wanted to release. I visited Christ Embassy Church, Onitsha and when the service was going on a young man sitting next to me asked “are you working on a song?”

“Yes” I replied

“When it’s out… I will sponsor the promotion” he told me and he gave me his card.

Although the project paused later I was amazed! I have never met him before and I have never seen anyone in my church come to ask me “hope there are no challenges?” 

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Let me paint a scenario… 

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She had been singing in the choir for a very long time, she had been the best for years because she took time to train her voice, discipline herself musically and spend her nights to rehearse! At the end of every service people comes to shake her hand and say “you blessed my life today with those heartfelt songs of worship” and the pastor calls her into his office and say “my daughter, you’re amazing! May God reward you”. She leaves the church building and go back to her struggle for survival! Her father died because they couldn’t afford hospital bills, the best the church could do was to gather people to come and pray for him… “Prayer is the key” they have said. When she comes to Pastor to make request for financial assistance, he smiles at her “daughter, we don’t have enough funds… We have building projects and other things that require so much money. Your father will be fine” and when her father had died pastor said at the funeral sermon that it is “God’s will”.

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Her mother got sick, they owed house rent and they hardly fed but Pastor was living fine because he is pastor ofcourse! People comes to sow seed in his life because he is a “fertile ground”. When they host international conferences, they write to very popular artists to come and perform in the church. These artists would demand for two million Naira and he negotiates with them to see if they will accept a million and five hundred thousand naira. During the conference, they come to entertain the crowd and showcase their talent! They tell stories of how God had blessed them and ofcourse, the one million and five hundred thousand is part of that blessing! The young lady who has been in the church for years, singing and leading souls to Christ is ignored even when she would have been a better worship leader at those events!

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Then, she suddenly makes a little money from her hustle and decides to enroll for a university education. Pastor tries talking her into studying part time so that she can have time to remain in the church but she wants to really focus on her education. Getting to the school, her new friend asks her to come visit their church but she wants to join her own church’s fellowship. After some persuasive efforts, she pays her friends church a visit. They collect her contact details and continue to check up on her! And she decides to give them a chance, she joins this church and things suddenly begin to change. Pastor instructs that she should be supported in her school fees. She tells them about her dying mother, they contribute money to see that she gets a good treatment and she turns a die hard member of this church because she has seen love at work!

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Gradually, she is given a bigger platform on a national conference and she starts becoming very popular and sought for by different churches. Her former church pastor climbs the pull pit to say “she started from us but she suddenly left us. Don’t be like her”. They say lots of trash about her but it doesn’t stop her from shining! 

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This has always been the case in many churches. Talents are neglected and totally ignored, people who dedicate all their time to serve in churches especially with skills that would virtually fetch them money outside the church are not appreciated and at the end they are told “God will reward you”.

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God rewards a man through another man and by hardening our hearts to really appreciate people who are contributing positively to the growth and organisation of the church, we are simply restraining ourselves from being used by God to bless the lives of this people. We have witnessed a mass exodus of young talented individuals from the church, some are lost in the world because that was where people showed them concern while some has found solace in other ministries! Argue all you want, criticize them all you want, the fact remains that showing concerns and appreciating certain people in church gives them a sense of belonging.

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When Job lost everything, it was still through his friends that God blessed him! Initially, they were only talking and talking but it didn’t do any good! We end up patting these people at the back and saying stuffs like “God will reward you” but if we can really listen on the inside, we will hear God saying “you’re his blessings”. It was until Job’s friends harkened to the voice of God to support Job that he felt God’s goodness again. It is us who brings God’s blessings to manifestation! Just like the world is waiting for our manifestation as God’s sons, people are waiting to experience God’s love through us.

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Lots of people are so committed in the youth ministry, choir, media and other departments that takes almost all the time they have and they have not been shown concern! They are ignored and most times outsiders will be hired and paid huge some of money to do the same thing these people have been doing! Why won’t we loose them? Why should we criticize them when they leave us for a place where they can be appreciated? For instance, some church leaders see people who do gospel rap as sell outs! When this gifts are not appreciated, why won’t they leave for a place where they can be appreciated?

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They should have waited for God to come down and bless them? Sorry… That will never happen! When you harden your heart to do that, another person will definitely pick them up! When you work, do you wait for God to come and pay you since He said “I will bless the works of your hand?” No! It is through people that God blesses you!

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Have you noticed some churches? Have you noticed that they hardly loose talents? Have you noticed they don’t spend money to invite gospel artists? Do you know their secrets? They nuture talents, they give them the platform they need because they understand that the church is a family and not just a place people come to receive instructions from pastor. They appreciate people and their gifts and they show concern.

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So many musicians who are into the world messing around and being criticized by the church were once members of a church, they started from the choir, they were committed but they were ignored! Following people up isn’t just about teaching them the word, they should be shown the word too! Some simply needed acceptance, some needed little assistance and in search of it, they walked away!

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Have you studied the early church? Do you notice how they were so into each other! They were blessings to themselves! Do you know that some church leaders today are guilty of the same thing that killed Ananais and Sephira.

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Still wondering why your church is experiencing mass exodus of talents? It is because you may have only shown interest in your own calling and ignored others. The church is a family and not a moral instruction ground… 

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1 Timothy 6:17-19ESV 

“As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy. They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share, thus storing up treasure for themselves as a good foundation for the future, so that they may take hold of that which is truly life.”
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#KingGeorge

#GracefulGeorge

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