This Sunday, May 14, 2017- we have yet another opportunity to celebrate mothers, as a young mum, I am excited at the thought of how important I am to have a day, set apart just to celebrate me.
This maiden mother’s day edition for youngmumsreverie, I saw it fit to celebrate women and the balancing act we do as working Christian mothers. This maiden edition I have the pleasure of presenting to you, my interview with Pastor Tolu Odukoya-Ijogun. I must add that she is a very warm person, very busy and very real. It was such joy to have her respond to me, despite her busy schedule. Without further ado, please read the excerpts of my interview with Pastor Toluwani Odukoya-Ijogun and I pray you will be blessed, you will learn and you will receive more grace to be a better wife and mother in Jesus name (amen):
Youngmumsreverie: Hello Pastor Tolu, Happy Mother’s day! Please introduce yourself and tell us what you do.
Pastor Tolu: My name is Caroline Toluwani Odukoya-Ijogun most people call me Tolu
YMR:As a pastor, mum and wife and fulfilling your purpose. How do you bring it all together?
PT: Honestly it is all the grace of God; sometimes I wonder how it’s all possible but when you rely on Gods strength you break barriers of impossibilities
YMR: There are a lot of things competing for our attention as mums, working in a full/part time job, being a mum and a loving wife. How do you strike a balance?
PT: I have always believed that there is a 20% that brings about the 80% result but what most of us do is that we focus on the 80% that brings about the 20% result. I know that I am (as Tolu Odukoya-Ijogun) very inadequate when it comes to all these things so I always focus on Gods strength to be the best steward I can in the lives of my husband and children because I realise every day that they are truly Gifts from God and since he gave me these gifts he know exactly what I need to do. In my place of work or business, I am the example of my father Jesus Christ so I ask him to help me represent him well, with the help of the Holy Spirit influence lives around me and do the best I can. and as a Pastor to reach as many souls as possible through the power of the Holy Spirit. To finish the assignment and purpose I was created for and to set as many lives on fire for our lord Jesus Christ.
YMR: What choices did you make that you found really helpful in striking this balance
PT: I pray and I speak to God all the time, I fill myself up with Gods word and I have my mentors around to always ask for guidance on what next to do; but the most important thing is working with the HolySpirit , I am understanding more that He already know my future, He has the blueprint of my life in fact He lives in my past present and future all at the same time, so He knows exactly what I need to do and when I need to do it. So I rely on Him 100%. My prayer is to Hear him better and know his voice when He talks so I can align accordingly
YMR: What were the challenges you had to deal/are dealing with combining the role of being a mother and fulfilling your purpose and how did you overcome them.
PT: In all Honesty is being the best Christian parent I can be, how to get my girls to understand from now who God is . Isabella Olamide is 3 1/2 and Michaela Abiola is 1 1/2 and I pray every day that not only my words but my actions will show them, Jesus. That I can mirror the true love of Christ to them. Also with my husband, that God show give me the true revelation of Agape love… that I love my husband the way God has called wives to be. Another major challenge is my hunger for God, in my case, he is definitely using the foolish to confirm the wise because I am not where I want to be in my Christian walk with God, there’s a level of intimacy I am yet to get to and it’s a daily hunger.
YMR: In a recent interview, you mentioned that “…My parents knew we were children before being pastor’s children…”, how has that helped you become a better mum?
PT: Like I said earlier it’s made me want to truly love my Children when a child grows up in an atmosphere where they feel they can be themselves they thrive more. I dance with my girls, I sing with them, we role play we have fun… I do everything in my power to be my children’s friends, not just their mother because when they can be themselves with you, they are more open to learning from you. This is what my Dad does and my Mum did.
YMR: Growing up, we had a fairly moral society, however, the world is generally toxic for raising Godly children, what tips can you share with youngmums in raising Godly children despite what is obtainable in today’s world
PT: Prayer and making your children comfortable with you. The Holy Spirit knows the formula for each child because every child is different, please never go with a blanket approach. I realise every day that my children are very different, my first needs more affirmation and hugs my second needs her space and freedom to express herself. In understanding your children you then understand how to start talking with them about morals. They are never too young to start. The devil doesn’t see age he just sees channels to use. So start talking to them about morals and sex in ways they would understand. Let them know what is right and what is wrong and also let them know you are open to explaining things they don’t understand. Make your children comfortable to speak with you about anything… and like I said Prayer Prayer Prayer can never be over emphasised.
YMR: You have two women related platforms, “rtwomen only” and “talk relationships”, what inspired you to start this network.
PT: I love helping relationships and so I started the talk relationship platform to impact of men and women in a godly way and what they do in their relationship. Real Talk Women was originally designed as a platform to speak candidly with women on relationships but the HolySpirit turned it to a Digital revival where we pray with and for one another and it has been truly awesome
YMR: What word do you have for youngmums this Mother’s Day
PT:One thing I want every woman to know not just mothers is that you have the capacity to produce and multiply it’s in your physical DNA and also in your spiritual DNA. Ask God to help you and bring to birth your purpose over your life and family and please please please tell someone about Jesus every time you have the opportunity to do so.
YMR: Thank you so much for your time pastor Tolu
Remember you can do it, you are born to multiply, ask for the help of the HolySpirit, He is God’s gift to us.
Happy Mother’s Day to all mums- aspiring mums, experienced mums and everything in-between. Please feel free to share.