The Senior Pastor of Champions Royal Assembly, Kubwa, Abuja, Joshua Iginla, has recalled his ordeal in the hands of his father when he converted to Christianity.
Iginla, who said he was born into a Muslim family, said his parents did not take his conversion lightly.
In an interview with Vanguard, the cleric said, “My conversion began at the city of Jos. It was very strong because I’m from a Muslim background and my father’s name is Lasisi Disu Iginla and every one of us from my elder sister to the last were all Muslims.
“We have names like Radiatu, Abdul lameed, Abdul Lasisi, Bilikatu, Risikatu, Abdulfatai.
“My conversion didn’t go well with my father because he was not happy about it. Then I lost a lot of friends because I was a very stubborn barrack boy and some of them made jest of me saying ‘in few days, I’ll return to my senses.’
“But my father rejected me outrightly. I could remember that he threw me out of the house in the middle of the night. It was a painful experience, curses were laid on me and I was treated like an outcast.
“My journey to glory was painful. Infact, my father’s mind set and was that as time goes on, probably I will become a Mallam like the rest them. The night I came back with the bible i thought my father didn’t see me not knowing he had actually discussed with my other siblings and told them I went to church.
“He was angry. First of all, what he did was to drag me in, used the military belt to beat me up and broke my head, I was bleeding and he chased me out of the house. It was very painful.
“I remembered my father disowned me and called me a bastard and a disgrace.
“My mum was always supporting my father, saying I should listen to whatever my father is saying, but she wept the night I was leaving. You know mothers are precious, they don’t want to lose their son but she was behind my father.
“She was just saying I should adjust and renounce this thing and whatever my father says is what I should do.
“The experience of the conversion was very strong and I told them that I believe in Jesus.
“Of course, I wasn’t lazy, I did security job, teaching job, I carried blocks, I already started training in a Nigerian depot before God intervened so my story isn’t a story of a man who just came to ministry overnight.
“I’ll simply say my story was that of grass to grace. Grace is an unmerited favour of God that brings a man out of obscurity, qualifying the unqualified. I feel God loves me so much, he has used me to show the world that you don’t need to belong to some cabal in the ministry to get to the top if he is behind you,” he added.