Interviews

Pastor (Mrs.) Blessings Agboli on 19 years of Victorious Army

+ Begins monthly Jesus Women of Influence programme

 WIFE of General Overseer of Victorious Army Ministries International, Pastor (Mrs.) Blessings Agboli says they have been counting their blessings and have no regrets or challenges in the last nineteen years of the fast- growing Pentecostal church.

Confessing this in an exclusive interview with ENCOMIUM Weekly’s Associate Editor, UCHE OLEHI (on Friday, October 10, 2014) the stylish woman of God and serial entrepreneur, fondly called Mama, also shared the success of the Jesus Women of Influence programme now a monthly affair, while  opening up on relationship with husband, Bishop Joseph Agboli, business and sundry issues.

Mama2Victorious Army Ministries International clocked nineteen this year. What would you count as your greatest joy?

What gives us the greatest joy is the phenomenal growth of the church. It’s also good to know that many who started with us are still in the Lord.  On my part, it’s equally a thing of joy that I’ve maintained the same zeal and faith since I started with my husband (Bishop Joseph Agboli).  Talking about my husband, its inexplicable having a man totally sold out to Christ and have maintained, over the years, his love for Christ.  Not even money could change him. I’m so, so happy I’m married to my friend, pastor and mentor.

What is it you haven’t yet got from God?

Nothing. We’ve practically got all we asked from God. He has been so merciful. But nobody is successful until he or she makes heaven, anyway. I wouldn’t say we’re successful now because success is not necessarily in the building or the rapidly growing assets of the church. People can be members of your church without getting born again or having positive impact in their lives. The people here are well seasoned. We are not the disco-dancing church. We believe in values. There is order in what we do. We follow the biblical order and that is what we do and what has taken us this far.

Some of your members might have left Victorious Army Ministries over the years. Don’t you miss them?

With all sense modesty and honesty, we hardly know anybody has left us, so far as the seats are not empty. Not even when some of our members go for holidays. I tell people I don’t preach church I preach Jesus, abide in any church where Jesus Christ is preached.

A lot of men and women of God can no longer stay in marriage. What’s really happening, Mama?

My husband counsels a minimum of 400 men and women in a week. You can see there is a glass cubicle here (points at transparent glass wall). Whatever Papa (her hubby) does is very transparent. He’s busy setting people free and passionate about liberating souls. So you don’t finish that kind of work and have time for trouble. What causes most of these things is lack of focus. If you as a wife understand your call and you are able to follow it and know that a man of God is a man, you wouldn’t derail. When I come to the office, he is my boss. I married him a pastor. I married him to serve him. I never get to a point where I don’t see serving him as my priority. My vow to God is to serve him as he serves Christ at home.   He’s my husband, but when we cross that gate, he becomes my papa and my pastor. When you are constantly aware of this divine call and bond, there can’t be a problem or challenge you can’t handle. You got to understand your call, motive and stand.

We asked because several men and women of God are sending dangerous signals in terms marital squabbles and infidelity…

It still borders on knowing what you are called to do and sticking to it.

mama Jesus WomenRelatedly, what’s your opinion on the shocking Oyakhilome/Anita divorce mess?

They are good together. God hates divorce. And I pray for them daily. I love them. They would do better together. I pray God heals them quickly.  I’m equally appealing to those judging them to give them a chance.  When you are called to serve God, it’s the highest call. And when you are an international minister, the responsibility is quite high and so is the criticism. God didn’t tell us we won’t suffer persecution, but He assured us one thing: that victory is sure. I want to say that men of God have not failed. They are men of God, meaning they are humans. I’m not supporting those who remarried or are seeking divorce. No, but we have more battles these days with Christians than the devil. Christians should not condemn their brethren. Don’t cast a stone until you are worthy of doing so.

You held the September edition of Jesus Women of Influence programme weeks back. What was the message?

‘Women, God Has Already Planned Your Future.’  We taught that if God has planned for you, the anxiety and desire to acquire more would be needless. Just allow God to take the lead.  It doesn’t mean we shouldn’t plan; I’m saying all I do has to be done directly for my soul and in total submission to God’s will.

Who was the lead speaker?

Dr. Funke Adejumo. I also ministered. It was held at Sheraton Lagos Hotel.

Hope it was well-attended?

Yes, it was awesome and rewarding, I felt elated when I saw the turn out. We were short of space, a lot of people stood outside.  Sheraton staff were on hand, bringing in more seats.

So, the programme is now monthly?

Yes, we started monthly this year.

What inspired the Jesus Women of Influence programme?

Seeing women with great potential not functioning in their space.  I want women to know we are not just preaching church. It’s Christ. We are enlightening and empowering women. Every woman has a gift, there’s something that makes you, you. Don’t be afraid to be you.  Stop hiding you, accept you the way you are, allow you to make mistake, correct it and move up, don’t stay down bitten and deprived because of people’s view about you. Get up.

What should we expect at the next one coming up this Friday, October 17, 2015?

The Holy Spirit ministering to us and healing us. It’s a must for every woman. We need to enlighten women it’s not just okay to be beautiful, you have to be useful, which is my word. You have to be useful to the kingdom of God. Again, there is more to being a beautiful woman. We need to ask questions we can’t teach in church. It’s an open platform where women learn from those who are more experienced than them. I made my first N10 million at 21! So, I have a wealth of experience when it comes to business. I’m sure you know I’m into oil and gas and real estate. We have quite a lot going on. We discuss marriage and financial issues. How you can be single and happy. Some single parents want to know how to cope with life.

Dr. Funke Adejumo, Guest Speaker

Dr. Funke Adejumo, Guest Speaker

Where is the October edition taking place and what’s the message?

It’s still at Sheraton Hotel, Lagos. The message is Born for Such a Time.

Away from Jesus Women of influence, we want to take you on the allegation you’ve bought more property in the Acme Road, Ogba neighbourhood?

Yes, we are buying property. Members of Victorious Army Ministries know Apostle Joseph Agboli loves to invest God’s funds into kingdom work, good schools, hospitals and clinics. So, if all the land in Lagos is available and we have the money to buy, we will buy. Whenever a land is available for acquisition, we will buy and possess it for the kingdom of God. We have no apologies (laughs). We don’t make noise about what we have, it’s totally for the kingdom of God.

How are your kids doing?

My kids are fine. My son came home this year after 14 years. They are all good. God has been good to my family.

Will any of them eventually join the ministry?

They are open to God’s call. So, if along the line God calls them, why not?

What is your assessment of the present administration?

I’m supporting President Jonathan’s wife, Dame Patience Jonathan because she has proved to me she’s a woman of influence. I like a woman of change. She has given me reason to support her. President Jonathan and his wife, our First Lady, are justified. I want more action taken on the education sector, our schools are inconsistent. I will be speaking about that soon. We like to focus more on errors more than the progressive image of Nigeria. Leadership is a contribution of ideas, Nigeria can’t be ignored any more. Honestly, in all standard.

Some of participants

Some of participants

Fashion wise, what has changed about the way you dress these days?

I allow my children in the Lord to shop for me now. When I have time, I shop at fashion shows or run way, whatever you choose to call it.  I’ve never been a slave to fashion. I wear what’s comfortable.

What’s your latest automobile?

I haven’t changed my cars for years.

What happened to your Bentley?

I returned the Bentley because I didn’t need it. Why should I park it? I live abroad. Whom am I showing the posh car? Why acquire many cars you ain’t using. Most people think I’m a car freak. That’s not true. We’ve been using this car for fifteen years! (that’s one of their jeeps).  My Range Rover is also not new. I like to maintain my cars. It’s not investment. I’ve ridden any car I wanted to buy, Rolls Royce, Bentley, Range Rover…I live in the United Kingdom. Car is nothing there.

 It’s obvious the good Lord has been good to you, what else do you want from Him?

The grace to reach more people, go to rural areas and minister to the needy. We are doing a lot in this area.

-UCHE OLEHI

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