Nigerian veteran singer/human rights activist, Charles Oputa a.k.a Charly Boy, who shocked many Nigerians with testimony of his salvation few days ago, turned up at a Christ Embassy church in Abuja with his wife, Diane, to give thanks to God.
Before now, the Christ Embassy church who shared testimony of his salvation, said Charly Boy was invited to church several weeks earlier by a dear sister who met and engaged him on social media, Charly Boy promised that he will come to church. With persistent reminders and follow up, on Sunday, 25th February, he arrived Abuja from a journey and came straight to church from the airport with twelve members of his activist group.
Reverend Tom then ministered to him privately, and he gloriously accepted Christ and was born again. In his new found joy, he requested that Reverend Tom also prays for his group members. He beamed with smiles as Reverend Tom announced to them, ‘CHARLY BOY IS BORN AGAIN!’
Recall too that in 2015 Charly Boy who wrote an article about his religion, said;
No, I no dey suck human blood, I no be general overseer for illuminati, I no dey Ogboni or for cult, e don doooooooo. You People no go kill me with laugh for Naija. The way eyes dey red now, you go think say Apollo catch dem. Many guys dey write me say dem wan join illuminati, Cheai, there is Godoooo. I dey sure say the church buildings wey dey Nigeria pass our population. So called men of god wey dey town don dey assume the proportion of China. All looking for their next Mugu. Una no see me joor.
I have been queried a lot about my faith these days. Do I believe in God? Do I believe in Jesus? Do I pray and to who or what? I guess for many, they probably cannot wrap their minds around my spirituality. Am sure some people even think say I be native doctor as na only me dey take siesta inside coffin when I never die. No vex, na my life and I dey rock-am anyhow, no homo. Some people dey form good Christians because dem wan go heaven, me I just dey denge dey pose because am living my own small heaven right here on this earth for this Nigeria. I no wan wait till I die. Even some of my Muslim brothers wey wan fast track dem own dey even do suicide bombing. Na only Naija Christains wey dey fear death yet dem all wan go heaven. Haba.
Most Nigerians who have heavily invested in their Christianity believe that the concept of any other faith should be considered false. So how do I start to speak to narrow-minded Christians to understand that Buddhism is a wholesome practice for everyone, even the Christians themselves? Take some time out and research, go to Google, you will for sure see so many books on the topic, where Buddhism and Christianity agree in philosophy; in fact, with some of the key factors of most world religions. Also, the best of the Bible and Buddhism both converge on the areas of ethics, kindness, giving, and love.Too many practitioners of all faiths focus on the rewards at the end of our journey, when the rewards and purpose are the journey itself according to the teaching of Buddha. While I may not be a religious person, I believe in Jesus/Christianity, I do not deny it. While I do not believe in the afterlife as Christians do, if those who follow it embody the qualities of Jesus in the here and now, then I embrace their practice as successful and good. While Buddhism is a faith of self-realization in the practice of here and now. Christianity is a practice for the afterlife of God’s revelation.
No matter how my Naija Christian brothers dey see God, my own way different. I see our Creator as one that does not interfere with the world in which we live, but only touches the heart of man to let him know He (God) is there. It is up to man to make his volitional choices using his free will, and making his own happiness. The story of Job tells of the story of a faithful man who is beset by all sorts of misfortune, but he “chooses” to keep his faith. While Jesus performed miracles and taught His Gospel, He always presented His parables as tools/models for His followers to make their own choices towards happiness. Buddha does the same as Jesus, but without the need to exclude the idea of other faiths. The Buddha said for us to always question, practice and see the truth by the fruits of our efforts. If a Christian can grow and develop his faith by adding the tools of the Buddha, then I see it as a damn good thing. I don find my direction to heaven, make you find ya own abegi.