The 2020 Teens Conference took place from 27th to 30th August at all Greater Evangelism Zonal headquarters. It was a special one as for the first time, the conference was decentralized to zonal level and most of the sessions were held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This ushered in a new era and had many advantages such as better concentration as teens were split in smaller units. The presence of God was manifest in all centers and many testimonies abound to this fact.
The theme of the conference was “Young and Fruitful”. The Overseer of the Children and Teens department, Pastor Dr. Nonyem E. Numbere welcomed the thirteen year old teens joining the Teens fellowship and declared the conference open with an opening charge. Excerpts below:
This Ministry, Greater Evangelism World Crusade, started with one man, Apostle Geoffrey Dabibi Numbere (of blessed memory) and his early converts were mostly teenagers like you. He and those few, through God’s enablement, turned the society upside down in the face of terrible persecutions. I will quote two newspapers to confirm this:
“Detectives are probing among other things the myth surrounding the Greater Evangelism Organization and its teeming teenage following in the Rivers State” (Nigerian Observer – Saturday June 1, 1974)
“They (the police) are also finding out sources to explode the myth built around the Greater Evangelism in Port Harcourt with its teeming teenagers.” (Nigeria Star – Thursday May 30, 1974)
A myth as used in those comments, is a “widely held but false belief or idea.” They called Greater Evangelism a “false belief” but it is with great joy that I announce to you that that so-called “myth” became a reality which nobody can deny and next week, on September 9, will be 48 years old. GLORY BE TO GOD!
She encouraged the teens to shake off the mentality of, “I’m too young or I’m only a child”, encouraging them to be fruitful even as teens. Thanking the teachers whom she refers to as “factory hands in God’s vineyard”, she admonished them to continue to be diligent in their service to God.
On this high note, the conference continued with power packed programs like bible study, growth series etc. Other ministers present were Evangelist Princewill Nkiri, Dr. Ovundah Nyeche and Tch. Tammy Ejimadu.
Bringing the conference to a close was Pastor Isaac Olori, International Director. He congratulated teachers for their commitment and sacrifice to the Teens fellowship. He also encouraged pastors to get committed in raising the young ones and to make impact for Christ in their lives while they are young. Pastor Isaac Olori spoke on the topic “Planted in the House of God” (Psalm 92:13, 14). He stressed that fruitfulness starts from when you are young. Excerpts from his sermon can be found below:
The Essentials of Fruitfulness (Matthew 13:3 -8)
- Seed - Every fruit starts with a seed (Isaiah 55:10. Genesis 9:2). Whatever you do, you are sowing a seed in your life. The question is what kind of seed are you sowing? Whatever you sow, you will reap. One seed might be sown but harvest is in multiples. The principle of fruitfulness starts with a seed. That seed is the Word of God. To be fruitful, keep sowing the seed of God’s word in your life. Ps 1:1 – 3
- Soil – the soil is our heart. If you do not put a seed in the soil, it will not bear fruit. In the parable, they had the same sower, same seed but different result. This was because of the soil. You must prepare your heart, like the sower prepares the ground. Types of soil or hearts are:
- Wayside – Open and exposed hearts. The devil knows that the word of God is what will transform your life that is why he picks it. Understand the impact the Word can have in your life and cherish it.
- Stony heart – The seed cannot have depth or root because of the stony heart. Your depth and root are crucial to the capacity to bear fruit. Col 2:7 It is your root that will keep you when the wind comes. Even with bearing fruit, roots matter. For example, maize dies after the first fruit but a mango tree can keep bearing fruit even after the first fruits. The difference between them is the type of roots they have. No matter how old you are, the word of God should still have an impact on you.
- The Thorny heart – The cares of this world, worldliness, deceitfulness of riches chokes the word. If you have time for other activities, you can make time for God’s word
- The Good heart – This heart is the one that receives God’s word and understands it
- Planted: You might have a seed and soil, but it must be planted. When something is planted, it is not mobile except it is transplanted and even then, some survive, others do not. Be planted firmly in God’s house. When planted, you are not tossed around easily.
In conclusion, he said,
Be a light of the vision, be a light of the impact God has created in your life. You have a seed that can sustain you. Just like Joseph, troubles and even promotion, could not take it away, he made a difference. Bearing fruit is making a difference, impacting other lives. Go and bear spiritual fruits and physical fruits of winning others for Jesus.
The conference came to a close with a prayer by the International Director of the nineteen year old teens graduating, the teachers and all the conference participants.