KEYNOTE ADDRESS BY ISRAEL CHIBUEZE IBELEME AT THE 2016/2017 MATRICULATION, CONVOCATION, AWARD AND PRIESTLY ORDINATION CEREMONEY OF ENCYCLOPEDIA INSTITUTE OF THEOLOGY AND RESEARCH, NIGERIA. 3 /12/ 2017.
TOPIC: MAXIMIZING YOUR POTENTIAL FOR KINGDOM IMPACT
I am most humbled by your invitation as your Guest Speaker in this august occasion. Speaking to ministers of God has been a long-time dream simply because of my passion for excellence and advancement of God’s kingdom here on earth. Yes I know some will say he’s a pastor’s son; of course that is true and indeed, I am. However, being a pastor’s son makes no difference if there is no distinction between my life and that of others. We are created for impact and the most important thing is to know how we can impact lives within and outside the church, working together, maximising all of our efforts to not only win souls for Christ but also to better the lives of the people around us, in church and outside of church.
I would like you to ask yourselves, what do u readily do with your time, how many souls have you won for Christ? Although, not everybody here is called to be a pastor or to open your own church, but know that you are a servant of God, always be ready to work for God. You don’t need to be a pastor to do God’s work. All you need is the word of God in your spirit, in your heart and in your mouth; and of course the will and zeal to carry out God’s instruction at all times.
If you have to build, build a church for God not for the world. Many churches build edifices just to impress people, to make money from them. Don’t you ever be among those pastors that twist the word of God, who make false prophecies, who have used the bible to destroy homes, break marriages; who use the opportunity of being someone’s pastor or mentor to fornicate with members or deceive and defraud people with the word of God.
Today, I charge you to lead by example, make an impact differently and use your potentials for God. Every member of your church is important to God, so don’t treat them like you are their Lord, make them feel at home. In the kingdom of God we are all equal, do not remove or appoint leaders of the church because of interest, lay a strong foundation for God. Invest in the life of your poor members, touch lives and give to those who have lost hope. Impact in the Church is very important.
Do not be a tribalistic leader. The unity of the country where you are is very important, therefore, always engage the church to build a stronger society, believe in our Nation. Be an active Christian –Matthew 25:15. “And unto one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one; to every man according to his several ability; and straightway took his journey.’’ So everyone is given something according to his/her ability. God knows everyone of so well that he needs no one to tell him about us. The gifts and talents you have were given to you by God, therefore, that makes you a steward of God’s gift. And remember it is required of stewards to be found faithful 1 Cor. 4:2.
According to Dr. Keith Johnson, your life’s perspective change based on your point of view, past, current or future. Are you looking at your life from where you started, where you are now, or from the end, at the very last moment of your life? Most people view their lives from the past or present. But when you review your life from the end, everything takes on a new meaning. From the beginning and now, most time we tend to focus on our survival and successes from the end; we are forced to focus on impact and making a difference.
Note that God’s gift to you is your potential. Your gift to God is what you do with it.
Potential is not who you are now, but who you can become. Potential is not what you are doing now, but what you can do in the future. Potential is not what you have at this moment, but what you can own in the future. Potential is not who you are helping at this moment, but the multitudes you could be helping in the future. Potential is carrying out from your future saying, “You can be, you have, and help more. Keep reaching out.
If you are struggling with financial challenges, bored at your current job, discouraged about your life’s achievement, unsure about how to grow your organization, frustrated with people who lack motivation, or just simply tired of not seeing real change in your life, then you need to start thinking, feeling and acting differently.
We meet people who are surprised to learn that their own leadership level is an important part of increasing their impact, influence, and income. It’s true. Whatever we do in life, our personal achievements depend on our growth as leaders. All institutions need leaders. We know this is true whether that institution is a church, nation, business, school, factory, or family.
Today, Joel Osteen is a leader whose impact, influence, and income are obvious. Whether or not you like his style, smile, or theology, he has a list of amazing achievement: pastor of the largest church in America.
However, Joel constantly talks about how he never imagined while working in the media department for his father, that he had the ability to be a public speaker. As a matter of fact, in his first sermon after his dad died he said, “It’s a miracle I am even up at this pulpit.” John Osteen, his father, saw Joel’s potential, but Joel did not see it in himself until there was a demand placed on his inner leadership.
If you do not discover and develop your leadership quality, you will not be able to fulfil your life assignment. The result is devastating! God’s purpose for putting you here on this planet is for you to solve some sort of difficult problem or meet a specific need for your generation.
If you don’t grow your inner leader, you could deprive the next generation of a problem solution or not meeting a desperate need. God has placed you here for such a time as this! The timing of your birth was precise and prophetic.
As you leave here today note that God has assigned you a special project, so work like u have never worked before, as an ambassador of Christ try to live a life that pleases God.
We are blessed with different gifts, some have gift of prophecy and others miracle, please let me use the medium to advice you not to try what you’re not called for in church, today we see different pastors performing miracle and trying to use magic to deceive church members, let me tell you, it won’t favour them, it can only be for a period of time.
Be the man of God that hears from God; don’t live a life of immorality. As a pastor, you are going to see many temptations on your way, please try to pray all night, build a strong relationship with God. Every pastor is a leader, try to lead by example.
The time to prepare for your future opportunity is not when opportunity taps you on the shoulder. The time to prepare is now!
I believe the level of spiritual understanding in today’s church far exceeds that of any other generation. We have more Bible knowledge today than the great men and women of God of old, in that we have the benefit of centuries of insight from many, many great men and women of God. We may know a lot about spirituality, but not a whole lot about being leaders. This is why we have failed to change the culture. Now is the time to transition from a minister mind-set to a leader mind-set.
Thank you and God Bless.