By Samuel O. Doku (Washington, DC). The youths of today are the leaders of tomorrow, so when their talents and gifts are unearthed early, they become a blessing to their communities in particular, and the country as a whole. In light of this reality, the leadership of Amazing Love Church Ministry Int’l under the auspices of Pastor Georges Ntemi is imbued with a divine mission to help direct the gifts and talents of the young men and women of the Church toward that end.
After a week-long celebration during which the youth assumed roles of teachers on the prayer line, moderators, preachers, masters and mistresses of ceremonies, dramatists, poets, and singers, their week was crowned with an impressive delivery from Mr. Brice Kamtche of the Discipleship School in Minnesota on Sunday.
Brother Brice’s parents are members of the Church, and when he visits his parents from his base in Minnesota, he graces Amazing Love with his presence. So, when Pastor Ntemi asked him to be the keynote speaker for the Covenant Keepers, it was an easy decision for him; he readily accepted the invitation with glee.
The story of Brother Brice is exemplary, as it recalls the manner in which Christ’s disciples abandoned their professions to follow the Savior. A few years back, Brother Brice, who holds a master’s degree in finance, quit his $80,000-a-year job to become a modern-day disciple of God. Today he works for the Discipleship School in Minnesota, where he helps train young people who also want to devote their lives to doing God’s work.
Brother Brice began by acknowledging the excellent work Amazing Love is doing to improve the lives of its young people. “I love the name of this Church. When you come here, you really feel love. The youth has a strong voice here, and I thank God that the leadership of the Church has inspired them to give their minds and hearts to worshiping and serving God,” stated Brother Brice.
He told the story of a childless couple who went to India to adopt two children, ages five and seven but despite being provided with all the good things in life, including getting a good education, eating well, and being taken good care of, the kids were still embroiled in their old habits in India of hiding some of their food under their beds.
In the U.S., the children still were hiding food because of the psychological impact of the poverty they experienced in India. “You see the kids grabbed food and hid it under their beds because they were still worried that they wouldn’t have something to eat the next day. In the same way, we have been adopted into God’s family, so we no longer have to food under the bed. God is our provider so all we have to do is trust and believe in him. He will take good care of us, stated Brother Brice.
He then took a page from the late Pastor Miles Murray’s book of motivational speeches and outlined five fundamental life-defining questions: “What am I supposed to do? Where am I going? How am I supposed to get there? Who am I? and Why am I here? These are awesome questions to ask God, but if you are able to answer the last two satisfactorily, they would change your life.”
He observed that happiness, comfort, and security are important in life, but the most important thing in life that brings eternal joy is having a relationship with God. “You can carve your identity from your family. If your family values education, they encourage you to make sure you get the best education possible; on the other hand, on the negative side, if your report card is not always good, it can come with some negative perception.
“You can also carve your identity from culture. What does culture value? Culture values physical attributes such as popularity, financial status, liberty, privacy, and individual rights. But God values your heart. He wants you to worship Him with your heart, spirit, and body. He is an impartial and faithful God,” said Brother Brice.
He analogized the relationship between God and us to the relationship between a manufacturer and the object he creates. “If you want to know more about the object, you go to the source, the manufacturer. In the same way, if you want to know about who you are, you go to the source, God. Culture is not the source; family is not the source. God is the source,” insisted Brother Brice.
He noted that as individuals, we fall into many traps, including serving God but not loving Him. Brother Brice cited Matthew 22: 24 to reiterate the greatest commandment: “Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadduccees, the Pharisees got together. One of them an expert in the law, tested him with this question, ‘Teacher which is the greatest commandment in the Law.’
“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. God sent Jesus who was fully man and fully God so that we can have a glimpse of whom God is.”
Another trap, said Brother Brice, is telling God of your plans and asking Him for His blessings. “God wants you to make plans with Him. God is more concerned with your walking with Him, not otherwise. Jesus chose young men to be his disciples; they were between 16 and 20 years old when they were chosen.”
He asserted that the Church is blessed because Christians are the image bearers of God. “We carry his light, and we have to know how to use that to illuminate the darkness in the world. He is the author and finisher of our faith. We must not repeat the error of Adam and Eve who were in perfect communion with God but because of disobedience, they split.”
He reiterated that God made promises to Abraham, Jacob, Isaac, Joseph, and the prophets to foreshadow the coming of Christ. “Despite his promises, we still forget his greatness and magnificence. God helped the Israelites out of slavery, and he was adamant in telling them that. But the Israelites forgot. We forget because we don’t have grateful hearts,” noted Brother Brice.
God must be loved with hearts that are pure, hearts devoid of envy. “We have to honor God with what we say and do because his love for us is sacrificial and selfless. Worship is an important part of knowing and loving God. We must serve God with all our hearts, minds, and souls without any pretense. Submit yourself to his will,” stated Brother Brice.
Alluding to his own shift from finance to discipleship, he claimed, “I was working, but I had to shift. After you have heard God, you are confident; you don’t need affirmation from anybody. But it is not easy. It comes with trials and tribulations, but in those moments, align yourself more to Him. In the midst of problems, cry out loudly in desperation for him, and He will lift you up.”
“Remember, God came for the sick, not the strong. There is vulnerability and transparency. God wants you to come dirty so that He can clean you. But you must be faithful and loyal to him, for in the midst of your deepest sin, he loves you anyway.”
Brother Brice cited Philippians 3: 8, “What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus as my Lord. For whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage so that I may gain Christ.”
Brother Brice affirmed: “Knowing Christ transformed me into loving and serving him. We are a forgiven, chosen, redeemed, and holy people. Wherever you are, fight back. Don’t give up for your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is with you all the way.”
Pastor Georges praised Brother Brice for committing his life to serving God, especially when he was working and making an annual salary that many would have been envious of. He gave a brief account of Brother Brice’s journey from the finance sector to the discipleship, and how he encouraged Brice’s parents to accept the young’s man’s decision to do God’s work.
“Brother Brice has a master’s degree in finance and he was making $80, 000 a year. But a normal life is not what God wants. Brice didn’t have fulfillment in his life. He felt something was lacking in his life. He heard the voice of the Lord and decided to commit and dedicate himself to God. I can identify with that,” said Pastor George.
Pastor Georges also revealed that Brice felt he had to give back, so he has adopted an orphanage where he helps the young ones who lost their parents through no fault of theirs. “Brice is a testimony. His testimony should lead you to ask, “Do I know who I am? Do I know my purpose in life? Sometimes, out of the love we have for our children, we design a life for them that’s contrary to the will of God.
“When you see God for whom he really is and love him, you have realized your purpose in life. The Church is here to encourage and build up people to serve God,” noted Pastor George. Pastor Jean Paul Ntap said the closing prayer to round out activities of the Covenant Keepers.