Former President Olusegun Obasanjo yesterday said, God spared his life in 2020 for him to serve Him and humanity. Obasanjo, therefore asked Nigerians, who survived COVID-19 and witnessed the New Year, to thank God for His mercies.
The former President disclosed this at the second annual thanksgiving service of the State Chapter of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), which held at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library (OOPL), Abeokuta. Obasanjo said he knew the reason God spared his life to witness the New Year despite the turbulence and challenges posed to humanity in 2020 by COVID – 19 pandemic. According to Obasanjo he was spared by God purposely to “serve Him and humanity more and more.” Obasanjo, who is the Asiwaju Onigbagbo of Ogun State, said having survived the immediate past year not because he was more righteous or cleverer than any of those that was swept away by the pandemic in Nigeria, Africa and the rest of the world.
He said it dawned on him clearer that God purposely kept him alive to serve Him and humanity more and more. The former President urged others that thanking God for outliving year 2020 should not be his affairs only, saying, those who found themselves on the side of the living should also consider it a duty to be grateful to God for His mercy and compassion. He warned that one would be termed an “ungrateful lot if one fails to perform the duty of Thanksgiving.” He said: “It is our duty to give thanks to God. You will be the most ungrateful person if you do not perform the duty of giving thanks to God.
“In all circumstances, give thanks. Therefore, if you fail to give thanks, you are failing a very significant duty of yours as a Christian. “Last year 2020, its a very challenging year not only for us in Nigeria, not only for us in Africa, but for the whole world.
“The fact that you are alive calls for giving thanks to God. It doesn’t matter which way you look at it, that those who you know as a result of Covid-19 are no more here with us not because you are better than they are, more knowledgeable than they are, it’s just by the grace of God.
“And if God gives you that grace, to still remain on earth, maybe for a purpose and I believe part of the purpose is for you to continue to serve humanity and to serve God. You cannot be a servant of God if you cannot give thanks to him.” Earlier in his welcome address, Chairman of CAN in the state, Bishop Akin-Akinsanya described year 2020 as the year of “lockdowns, nose masks and sanitisers”.
He explained that the thanksgiving which has become an annual event was designed to honour Obasanjo as the Asiwaju Onigbagbo of Ogun state. He urged Christians to show gratitude for surviving COVID-19 pandemic last year. He said the Christian community decided to honour Obasanjo with the title when he clocked 80 for his contributions to Christian faith when he was the President. In his sermon, the National Vice President, Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN), Bishop Reuben Olu – Oke, admonished Nigerians to emulate the former president.