In April 2021, my husband and I visited Rev Johnson and Rev Victoria Olatuyi, who is my husband’s senior sister. We never imagined that would be the last time we would see our beloved brother, co-minister and exceptionally great solider of God.
We spoke on how Rev Johnson must celebrate his 71st birthday by God’s grace, as the Pandemic prevented us from celebrating his 70th in 2020. I even volunteered myself to be the MC of the occasion.
When God speaks, we sometimes interpret it to suit us! I was praying the next day after our arrival when I suddenly realized I was giving a speech. I remembered vividly what the thoughts in my spirit were: “If we all understood this man of God, many would have loved him more and appreciated him better. His heart was sold out for Christ and he had zero tolerance for mediocrity. ‘If it is worth doing at all, it must be done well’ was his watch word” and I was crying! I pinched myself to reality and rebuked such thoughts that it was not a funeral service we were supposed to be preparing for, but the celebration of his 71st birthday.
Reverend, you were as hard as a rock yet as soft as velvet. Passion is the one word I will use to describe you. You were passionate about everything you did and never did anything with half measure, except perhaps putting food into your stomach. You were a generous man given to elaborate entertainment and hospitality. You loved God so passionately that nothing could stand between you and your conviction of what God expected of you. Once you were convinced that this is the way, you wouldn’t be dissuaded, even if it meant death. “Let the whole world hear that Jesus Christ is the way the truth and the life” was your passion and preaching the gospel of life to the whole world was your vision.
Tough as you were, you were so humble that you could bow to learn at the feet of any whom you perceived had the fire of the Holy Ghost in them, young or old. You were so disciplined and set in your godly lifestyle – prayer time, service to God and general outlook on life. You expected the same standard from all which made it easy for you to be seen as a tough man. Worldliness was far from you, but you had a good taste for good dressing, a fashionista per excellence. Nothing you liked was considered too expensive to acquire. We had the same set of parents in law and I can boldly tell how much you loved them. You were one of the few men I have known who had no inhibitions establishing your place of abode in your in-laws place.
The last words of a dying man tells a great deal about where their heart is inclined and I was so glad that you confidently and joyfully declared this as your last words; “Thank you Jesus, my spirit man is revived.” How the Scriptures in Romans 8:11 was brought to life! “But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.” We have no doubt that you have entered into your rest. Rest on soldier of Christ. You finished your course, crowns and rewards of your diligence awaits you.
Adieu, till we meet to part no more at the foot of the Lamb.
Your sister-in-law, Rev. Bukky Ogunkanmi.