Dr Monisayo Komolafe is the South-West Regional Music Director of Foursquare Gospel Church, Nigeria and a gospel musician. In this interview with SEYI SOKOYA, she speaks about her calling and her vision.
How has life been as a nurse-turned-gospel musician?
I gave my life to Jesus Christ in November 1992 and from January 1993, I joined the choir and by the grace of God, I’ve been consistent in that capacity till date. I bagged a doctorate in nursing less than two years ago. Of course, passion in the music ministry, particularly, is centred on loving God, wanting to do His will as well as working for Him. In my early parts of the Christian life, I understood that we have been saved to serve and I also have the understanding that now it is time to serve.. I also understand that whatever we do, there is a reward for it. The scripture says, “Behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me to give to every man as it shall be. If that is the case, then I must do the work of God now and make sure I finish it.
The calling requires a lot of commitment and I didn’t hesitate to give my best, even when I got married, gave birth to my first child, and later had twins, I was in the choir. Though the usual way of the choir I joined then, you have to step aside when you are a nursing mother, and most times when people leave, they don’t come back. I was so determined that whether I’m pregnant or nursing a baby, I must continue to minister in the choir. By God’s grace, my determination became an example to others and I have been active as a choir member in the vineyard for 30 years.
At what point did you pick up gospel music professionally?
I see myself as a gospel minister the day I dedicated myself to be in it. Initially, I never had the thought of producing an album. I just do my thing to propagate the gospel and preach goodwill messages. But the moment I took to the word of God on the importance of having our visions on record, I started recording albums. Also, one of the major reasons I decided to record my works is that I listen to songs of those that have passed on. If truly you have a message to the world, then it is essential to put it down for as many as possible to have it now and when you are no more as God has designed it. It was about three years that I deemed it fit to wax records, but I have done a couple of songs since I was into music years back. I also thank God for surrounding me with good people that are making music production so easy for me.
Why have you been so quiet about your music career before now?
I am not quiet about my calling. I am so active when it comes to music ministries. This is where I derive joy. I am so active in the Foursquare fold and beyond. But the major reason I have not been so noticed in the mainstream is because of the happenings in the gospel fold. I do ask myself if they are still serving God or promoting themselves. I am always conscious about this, even to the extent of gaining esteem in the name of promoting gospel songs, which is uncalled for. We don’t have to sin against God in order to promote gospel music. I cannot be involved in ungodly acts all because I want to promote my music. I have committed myself to the work of God and I surrender to him to take charge as I excel in propagating the gospel through my music talent.
What is your view of the gospel music industry?
It is doing very well, but gospel musicians must be conscious of who they are as Christians, heaven and messages they carry. They need to truly carry the message and not promote themselves or dance to the tunes of the world. I am not satisfied with some things in the gospel fold, but sincerely, Nigerian gospel music is doing well. Nataniel Bassey, Dusin and Mercy Chinwo as well as some other gospel musicians are good examples and they are doing very well. I enjoy their works and I will only just tell people that are on the way not to be discouraged.
There is a belief that female musicians have limits in the industry because of marriage and society.
For me, there is no limit to whatever you want to do. I am a nurse. I will never encourage what will affect my home negatively. I have been singing before I met my husband. I met him as a choir member and I have been working hard not to be stopped from singing because of marriage and God has been helping me. I have not allowed my career to affect my home, instead, it has really helped me. He is a medical doctor and he has been very supportive. If my children didn’t stop me from ministering in the choir for 30 years, then I can go as far as I can and there are no limits.
What has been your greatest challenge?
I don’t think I have any challenge. The only thing that can be a challenge for me now is honouring invitations and this is due to Nigeria’s bad road network. Though, the Ibadan/Lagos expressway is now good, but other major roads linking the South-West states are bad. But we pray things get better.
How many songs have you produced?
About seven. I love all my work. I cherish my first song entitled, “Apata Ayeraye”. I got the inspiration on the altar about 15 years ago. I have a list of other works including, “Shabach”, “Praise”, “No More Limit”, “Greater Glory”, “Victory” and my recently released seasonal and Christmas song, “Olugbala De”. Importantly, a gospel musician must imbibe the word of God, or else, one will be singing out of the word of God and this has helped me greatly. Producing songs is the easiest thing ever.
You are a career woman, wife and mother. How have you been able to combine all these?
It is due to divine wisdom and discipline. I will not go to church or any ministry without ensuring that the house is in order. My husband’s food must be well prepared and ready if I won’t be at home. We are close and he is always aware of my movement. I won’t give room for him to stop me from the calling because everything will have been done. Aside from being a gospel minister, I am a nurse and going to work should not be an excuse for the house not to be in order.
What should your fans be expecting in 2023?
By God’s grace, we will continue to do more, seek for more grace, inspiration and be willing to go God’s will. I don’t joke with the will of God. If it is God, He will allow the door to open and if it is not Him, it will not open. So, what I desire most is to walk in God’s will this year. I will ensure the light I carry shines brighter and brighter.
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