Prophet TB Joshua’s wife, Evelyn Joshua, in an interview with The Spectator, talked about how she met and married TB Joshua at the age of 17 in 1990 and her role in his ministry.
Your husband made a promise that The Spectator would be the first Nigerian newspaper you would talk to. After waiting for so long, we thought it was never going to happen. But it is happening now. So, let’s start by asking you, how does it feel to be Mrs Evelyn TB Joshua?
I count myself very lucky among women. My husband is a man every woman will want to have as a husband.
That presupposes a serious contest over him (general laughter…). Seriously speaking, do you fight any battle to keep him?
Not at all. I know that every woman will desire to have him as a husband, but there are not struggles on my part to keep him.
Prophet Joshua is very handsome and a great instrument in the hands of God, sought after, all over the world, by presidents and kings. You mean there are no special battles you fight to gain his attention and also keep him from prying female eyes?
Not at all. But I know that when a man is hardworking and God-fearing, every woman will like to have him. But believe me, I fight no special battles to keep him. He knows who he believes and God whom he believe and serves so well is capable of keeping him, and has, indeed, been keeping him.
So, how do you cope with his tight schedule? This is somebody who spends every minute of his life in the church ministering to people’s needs and all that; and we do know that women need their husbands as much as their husbands need them.
We are into the same cause. So, I don’t have any difficulties handling that aspect at all because we are pursuing the same goal. God has so made it that we complement each other perfectly well in very many ways.
Are you a pastor, too?
No, but I am helping.
So, you never trained as a pastor?
We are many here; we are under training.
Yes, and it is a life-long training. It is a continuous, never-ending training like the school of life. Of course, as long as we are living, we will continue to strive in God’s will.
So, how exactly did you meet Prophet TB Joshua? We want to know the year, the circumstances and all that…
(laughs heartily…) It was around 1989
The year you met
Twenty three years ago, I visited a sister somewhere at Ikotun-Egbe, and, then they were talking about a particular man, a prophet to be precise. It was a kind of meeting to be precise. And it’s like everybody in that gathering, or at least half of the people in the room, had actually visited him. So, they were saying a lot of good things about him. I was thrilled. At the end of the whole thing, I called a sister outside and asked whether she could take me to the prophet. I didn’t ask to go there out of curiosity. I actually needed a guide at that point in time.
Were you at any crossroads at that point in time?
Not really. I wasn’t at any crossroads, but I desperately needed a guide.
Or were there some challenges you were facing and for which you needed to see this man of God?
Not quite so. But I had seen pastors. I worshipped in a church and I had read about prophets in the Bible, though I had never come across any. But at that particular time, I needed a guide, sort of.
Yes, a spiritual guide. A counsellor.
If we may take you back, what things were people talking about that made you get interested in him?
Many things. This one said he prayed for him and things became okay from there. Another said her life was at a bend but straightened up when she met him. You know, things like that. So, we went there. Unfortunately, we did not meet him at home. But looking back now, I thank God that we didn’t meet him that day.
Because that would have been the end of this story.
Why would it have been the end of the story?
It would have been because what he told me the very first day that I set my eyes on him, if the sister were there, I would have believed that maybe she had gone behind me to tell him all about me. And that would have ruined it.
So, did the man of God tell you the story of his life?
Yes, of course.
Without any pre-knowledge of who you were?
Yes. Okay, I’m coming (laughs…). Some months after, I visited him. That was in 1990. I could remember that day was a public holiday. I remember also how I nearly lost my way because I had never been to the place before, except that day I went with the sister.
That is to say, this time you went alone?
Yes, I did. I went alone. But before I was able to locate the place, it was a bit difficult for me. When I got into the waiting room, I met two men waiting to see him. Before this time, the idea that I had about a prophet was that of an old man with a white, long beard and things like that. So, on that day, I was reading a novel that I came with when I suddenly saw someone come into the room, pick one or two things and went back. But the shadow of whatever I saw was not that of an old man.
Did you greet him?
No, I didn’t even look at his face. But when he left one, one of the two men was telling the other one, ‘that’s him. That’s him.’ I looked up but he had gone. They went into the consulting room before me. Finally, it was my turn, and I went in there. We sat opposite each other. And, he was gazing at me for about a minute and some seconds. I gazed at him, too. Transfixed as I was, I noticed that there was a piece of paper before him. Still looking at me, he wrote the word, ‘Ejide’, on it. (Transliterated, Eji de – twin has come). Lest I forget, I’m a twin.
And before then, you had not told him anything about yourself?
No, we were just looking at each other until he, at a time, wrote my name on the piece of paper. So, we started talking. He told me a lot of things about myself, both things that I knew, and those that I never knew. I was shocked. He told me about my family, about my past, my present and my future. Altogether, we spent about 45 minutes. At the end of the whole thing, he spoke to me in Yoruba and said: Joo ma binu o. Ma ro pe bi mo se nba gbogbo eniyan ti o ba wa s’odo mi soro ni eleyi o. Mi o ni ale, mi o dee fee ni ale. Sugbon, se oo fe mi? (Transliterated, this means: Please, don’t be annoyed. Don’t think this is how I talk to everyone that comes to me. I don’t have a concubine, and I don’t want to have a concubine. But can you marry me?)
Just like that?
Just like that. It was strange, but that gives us an insight into what the Scripture says that the Spirit testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. I think that was it. That was how I met him. Some months later, I asked him why he thought it was right seeing a lady for the first time and going on to propose to her. He said he had seen me four days before that very day.
I don’t know
In his dream?
I don’t know.
Or was it a revelation?
Honestly, I don’t know.
Okay, let’s go back to the time you entered his consulting room. You said you sat opposite him and looking at each other intensely, I believe. At that particular moment, what was going on in your mind?
A lot of things. In the first place, I was expecting to see an elderly man.