Dear Nigerian Christian, your crossover service is unnecessary

Calendars fall into four types, at least: lunisolar, solar, lunar, and seasonal. There are at least 76 different calendars under these types.

Don’t let anyone make you feel bad for not going into overdrive over the end of another cycle on the Gregorian Calendar — the one that runs from January 1 to December 31.

I’ve been labelled “sadist”, “Jehovah Witness”, “sad” and all sorts for responding “good morning” to those who greet me “Happy New Year” on January 1.

It’s okay to celebrate. It’s okay to mark the end of the year on a calendar and rejoice at the beginning of a new one. It’s also okay to abstain.

You don’t have to attend a crossover service. There’s nothing to cross. You can, as a matter of fact, write your own calendar off any of these calendars. You don’t have to say “Happy New Year”. Your success in the coming days is not necessarily dependent on a new year resolution. This is fact.

But churches have attached needless religious meanings to end of year/new year frenzy. They, like businesses, also commercialise the mood. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing. I’m only saying they actually commercialise it.

There’s nothing you’ll hear at the crossover service tonight that you didn’t hear last year, or even in the years before. You’ll drop last offering for the old year. You’ll drop first offering for the new year. You’ll sow last and first seeds. You’ll give last and first thanksgiving offerings. You’ll be told to repent so something bad doesn’t happen at 23:59. You’ll be told to show happiness in “God’s presence”. And you, without even trying, will pretend it’s something new so the emperor without clothes isn’t embarrassed. 

There are pastors who know this crossover service is a nothing-burger but still hold it because they don’t want their members to go elsewhere. They also want to win new members. That’s one of the ways businesses think. Those who know no better, the most scary, form the majority. They’re ones who’ll question the faith of believers who don’t attend crossovers.

And I don’t want to get started about the end of year/new year prophecies. They’re scams — products of the same religious mindset that makes you dependent on the Sunday-Sunday “I want to go to church to hear the word of God” pill.

See, no one is going to hell or heaven because they attended or didn’t attend a crossover service. No one is getting any special blessing for attending or abstaining. No one is getting any special breakthrough. God is not expecting you to be especially grateful because of a new year. For God’s children, gratitude is a constant, not a feature Yuletide triggers.

What I’m saying is that you can actually sleep into the “new” year, or do whatever it is you normally do at night, like it’s a normal day because it actually is.

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