Pastor Bisi personifies strength, courage, boldness and unswerving faith in God and his goodness.  Married just five years, she was widowed very suddenly and unexpectedly, and found herself a single mother to you very young sons.  Here she shares some insights for doing exploits despite life’s harsh setbacks.

HMJ When and how did you become a single parent?

PBS: I lost my  husband to an automobile accident in 2002 just a week into our 5th wedding anniversary (We got married in 1997).

HMJ: How many kids do you have? 

PBS: Two amazing boys.

HMJ: How old were they when your husband passed away and how old are they now?

PBS: My oldest son was four and his little brother was just 10 months. My oldest is now 18 years and at university studying Computer Games Technology and his younger brother (15 years old) is currently in Year 11 preparing for his GCSEs.

HMJ: What was the main challenge raising kids single handedly?

PBS: Raising kids alone is a tough Job! I can’t seriously put it in words the challenges over the years; it ranges from emotional to whatever else you can think of. But the Lord greatly helped me because I and my children are very close and we discuss basically everything in the house. It will amaze you to know that we have moments we tagged ‘family meeting’ where we discuss events, moods, finances, future expectations, house chores-who is good at what? We have frank/serious talks about their education, reviews from their teachers-parent evenings-their future aspirations and; and their word of advice to me regarding my own personal life and care (this single parenting style was an inspiration I received from the Lord … to always discuss with them and not assume that they are too young to understand my situation). I just can’t thank the Lord enough because I look back every day and bless Him for His help and how far we’ve come in the last 14 years.

HMJ: What’s the greatest value you’ve instilled in them?

PBS: Pray about everything, believing in themselves, resilience no matter the situation.

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HMJ: What’s your favourite book? 

PBS: Failing Forward by John C. Maxwell.

HMJ: What did it teach you?

PBS: I was given a copy of this book a few months after my late husband’s burial.  I found the book highly intriguing and helpful especially since I needed to know the mind of God regarding what to do with my life!

I discovered that the difference between average people and achieving people is their perception of and response to failure and setbacks.

John Maxwell said, and I quote…. “I want to help you learn how to confidently look the prospect of failure in the eye and move forward anyway, Because in life, the question is not if you will have problems, but how you are going to deal with them. Stop failing backward and start failing forward!”

That statement was a wake up call for me to re-strategise my life because I had two young men whose destinies were reliant on me.  If didn’t figure out how to handle the responsibility, the implications would be life transforming or damaging!

I go up, got out of self-pity, locked away my emotions (pain or any form of excitement) in for years…..and I forged ahead against all odds.  Glory to His name I think God proved Himself faithful!

 HMJ: What did you think of Do Great Exploits?

PBS: The book is very clear, simple to understand and highly insightful!  A lot of practical wisdom for any one who wants to follow their dreams and make them a reality.  It is all stated in this book!

I am going through a phase in my life at present and it’s like my life/destiny is crying out loud for a change! As I sat down to read your book (the Holy Spirit has been consistently telling me that I have to trust God with His covenant word that He gave me in the place of prayers……and ditch FEAR of the unknown).

When I read chapter 10 of your book, (People who do great exploits befriend their fears)…. I screamed out loud and said, wham! God you are great! It confirmed what the Holy Spirit told me that day when I needed a word from Him.

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HMJ: What’s next for you?

PBS: Hummmmh! That’s a million dollar question.

I take each day as it comes ……though, mapping out few steps to take as the Lord gives me the direction.

I have learnt over the years that the scripture cannot be broken.(I Cor 2:9…..’What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived’. The things God has prepared for those who love Him’

The more you stay with God the more He unfolds His plans for you…at this present phase of my life my heart yearning is that I don’t want to ‘assume’ that I know or that I am already in His purpose for my life!

I take each day and I cry out to Him…saying Lord what is your original plan and purpose for my life?.

As I mentioned above, the things of God are usually revealed in stages, so as it unfolds in my life all eyes will see and bless the Lord for me.

Pastor Bisi Salako is a pastor at God’s Vineyard Ministries.  She was employed full time as the Church Administrator for thirteen years.  Leave your comments on Pastor Bisi’s story in the box below.