Book: Adventures Beyond Mpataba. ‘reconciling with God’ Pages: 274 Author: Dr E.E. Ackah-Nyamike Jnr Publishers: Combert Impressions Ltd, 2012 Reviewed by Mary Ayim-Segbefia, lecturer, NAFTI
Before attaining middle age, many people do not know exactly what they want to be in life. There are others who know what they want to be, but need to be guided to get there.
It is perhaps only a few people who know what to do to get to their goals; in the event that they are unable to get to their goals, a lot of people get frustrated and give up in life.
This is similar to the task of getting to do one’s dream job. Many people do different jobs without any satisfaction. Some even change jobs and finally retire without any fulfillment in life.
These scenarios are in line with a majority of Christians who desire to know God but they do not know just how or what to do. There are others who know exactly what they want to do, but they need a little push or encouragement to take that bold leap.
In his autobiography ‘Adventures Beyond Mpataba: reconciling with God, Dr E.E. Ackah-Nyamike Jnr tells his life changing story from conception to adulthood. He describes the various bumpy and smooth roads he took, and the influence of the Almighty God in ensuring that His will is done, no matter the time.
The ten chapter book narrates his experiences through childhood twists and turns; teen successes, failures and regrets; adventures at Legon; a second chance with God; academics sojourn in England; his last days as a lecturer at Legon; his spiritual rebirth; baptism of fire; and finally the fact that obedience is key, Jesus is the answer.
Dr. Ackah-Nyamike Jnr. uses biblical quotations to support the experiences he has been through. For instance, one can find Jeremiah 1:5 being cited when he talked about the dream his mother had before his conception, and the circumstances that led to his birth.
Throughout the book, Dr Ackah-Nyamike Jnr. shows that, just like the biblical Jonah running away from God’s call, God also chased him in various ways till he landed in the mouth of the whale (doing God’s designed work).
In order to fully do the will of God, be a servant and messenger of God, he had to resign from the prestigious University of Ghana. While many people, friends and relatives could not understand why such an act, Dr Edward Ackah-Nyamike Jnr knew he was being led by the Holy Spirit.
One aspect of the book that I particularly like is the fact that he knew what he wanted and went for it. For instance, after his first degree he wanted to work with the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), but was turned down because he did not have a Ph.D and seven years post doctoral experience.
Dr Ackah-Nyamike Jnr. decided he would study for a Ph.D. and pursue his ambition of working with FAO. Every step of the way he focused on his goal at FAO, or so he thought. But as always, ‘man proposes but God disposes’.
Dr Ackah-Nyamike Jnr. describes the challenges he faced in his first marriage and the internal struggles he had to go through when it dawned on him and his ex-wife that they could no longer live together as husband and wife.
According to him, it was a difficult decision to take, especially as he had friends and other people who saw him as a role model. But to the glory of God, he is able to prove that perhaps, God caused the divorce in order to realize his dreams.
He however categorically stated that he is strongly against divorce, but the situation in which he found himself could not have been solved without a divorce. He also breaks down the various parts of the scriptures that explain the benefits of fasting and how one should fast. Dr Ackah-Nyamike Jnr. also describes the role of prophecies in his life and prescribes some biblical quotations to support this. He also narrates a dream he had that suggests that he has seen Jesus, due to his total submission to God.
The controversial issue of tithes is explained in the book. He recommends a deep understanding of Malachi 3:8-12.
He describes the prophecy he received about giving birth to a baby boy who must be named Emmanuel.
Obviously every couple who confirms pregnancy will be convinced that the prophecy has come to pass. But to the shock of Edward and his wife Juliet, they gave birth to a girl.
It took them seven years after the prophecy to give birth to the boy. This obviously best explains the biblical context of Isaiah 55:8- ‘his thoughts are not our thoughts, neither are his ways our ways’.
The author describes a time when his unwavering faith and belief in God was tested. He was struck with an illness that got his head spinning for several weeks and got him hospitalized.
Though he thought he would die, he says his belief in the word of God in Psalm 118:17: I shall not die but live, and declare the works of the Lord, kept him alive. He also talks about the role of dreams and his “spiritual sensitivity in picking signals from the Holy spirit”.
This ties in with his spiritual sojourn. His quest to find God and do his will took him to a couple of charismatic churches, though a born catholic.
He says though one may visit different churches, it is the individual’s ability to read and understand the word of God, practice and live it that brings about fulfillment. This would also save one from unscrupulous people who pose as men and women of God. His key words are determination, commitment, steadfastness and above all, the fear and love of God.
He outlines some values and principles that have guided him and he believes that should the youth develop some of these they would be worthy young men and women of our times.
In this book are some simplified texts on who God is: 1 Chronicles 16:34- God is good, Matthew 28:18- God is powerful, Psalm 86:10-God is great, Psalm 8:1, God is excellent, Ephesians 1:17-God is glorious,1Peter 2:22- God is sinless, Ezekiel 43:2 -God is radiant, etc etc.
This book will be useful for anyone who yearns to know more about God and be committed to him. This book will help those who have backslidden from their God given gifts and purposes.
This book will serve as a guide to aspiring pastors and counselors, as well as a tool for motivational speakers. This book touches on the sensitive subjects of tithes, divorce and fasting. The author does not leave out any opportunity to let readers know the benefits of walking effectively with God in total obedience.
Completing this autobiography and setting up CORD Family International are major accomplishments in his life. CORD Family International is a mentoring and counseling Christian organization that seeks to empower its members and the global Christian community to experience a more effective walk with God.
Dr Edward E. Ackah-Nyamike is married to Juliet and they are blessed with five children.
Copies of the book can be purchased at Christ the King Catholic Church Bookshop (opposite Flagstaff House), Sunny 88.7 FM and through email- firstname.lastname@example.org.