Posted by Olaniyi Abodedele on Saturday, May 10, 2014 Under: News Stories

On Sunday 20th of April 2014, the Nigerian community and media fraternity gathered at the Redeemed Christian Church of God on Lynwood road, Pretoria to celebrate with Mr. and Mrs. Collins Atohengbe, the Bureau Chief of Voice of Nigeria in South Africa for the formal Christian dedication of their first child Joshua Osaorenekhoenoma Olaoluwakiitan Oladipupo.
The elated new father, Mr Atohengbe  told our reporters at the event;  “the celebration is so interesting because Joshua is my first child in 20 years of marriage and I thank God, am rejoicing and experiencing joy that surpasses the level of joy I have ever known. I have been happy but now I have a greater joy that I have never experienced in life”.

In the same spirit of joy,  Mrs. Funke Mercy Atohengbe narrated the couple’s traumatic ordeals of their 20 years marriage. “Well, I got married on the 26th of March 1994 and since then I have been trusting God for the fruit of the womb. It wasn’t easy; it has been very traumatic. We all know that as Africans, children are very important. In fact, when a woman gets married, after the first year and she hasn’t conceived people will be asking questions. That was the situation myself and husband found ourselves and as Christians we kept praying. We thought praying was going to be for a while not knowing we’ve spent over 20 years. The 26th March this year made it 20 years since we got married. But I want to give God the glory that last year April 2013 I conceived, and it was very unbelievable”.

Mrs.  Funke Atohengbe thanked everyone who stood by them during the trying times but most importantly she was full of praise to the almighty Lord.  “I also want to thank my mother, she was there for me, although my father is late but I remember when he was alive, at 4 am in the morning, he would wake up, go to the hill top to pray and intercede on our behalf. And I thank God today that we are celebrating that testimony. I thank the Almighty God, my sisters, my  husband most especially, he stood by me for those 20 years. Not all men can do that and he is his mothers only child and second child in the family of 40 children. I just want to give God the glory. God has been faithful and I want to encourage as many people has possible that has been trusting God for this kind of gift to wait on the Lord and trust in him and to continue to pray and trust God. God is able to do all things”.

For spouses, mothers and fathers in-laws in similar situation, Mr. Collins advised them to stay strong and believe in each other. “I want people to be courageous. You see, in my situation it is very easy to say let me go and have a child outside, but the question is, what I won’t allow for my wife to do, why should I do it? If my wife was to go and have a child outside how will I feel? I stayed on that ground. I took the time to avoid other women. Now, it is wrong to assume that I am super human. It is wrong, I am not, I had moments of temptations, but I asked myself, the strength that I need to have a child with my wife, why should I give it to other women? I refused and God honored our deeds and honored that thing that I sowed. He says ‘if it’s as small as mustard seeds that will be able to move mountains’ and he has moved this mountain and the mountain can’t stand anymore. So, people should be hopeful and in-laws particularly should show respects for their daughter and son in-laws, and spouses should know that they have themselves to live with. Treat your wife or husband like a human being. Respect your spouse because your spouse is the other part of you. It’s like wounding my left hand because I want my right hand to be happy, I mean you can’t do that and feel comfortable. These things must be taken into account and they must be taken as a daily sermon to live by”.

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