THE NIGHT I TURNED 18

@ Olutope Olonade

Episode 26

“Yes I will…..Abike…please show me what to do”. She cried out.

I quickly asked her to kneel down before the Lord. I prayed a simple but powerful prayer of salvation after she had accepted the Lord as her master and saviour. She also renounced her dirty profession and promised to dedicate her life to the Lord in purity and righteousness.

I wept with joy seeing Rekia with that sober reflection. I was convinced in my Spirit that it was a genuine repentance. My Spirit blessed God once again for given me a field that was full of riped souls that were ready for harvest. In just a day, two great souls were won for God.

I felt joy like a river in my soul as I also remembered that, there was much joy and great rejoicing in the kingdom now.

I followed Rekia back to the compound to reconnected with my other team members only to discovered that the roommate Rekia was referring to was no other person than Caro, the sister that had invited us in to her home.

We were on a mission that day, to access the slum in a bid to know the strategy to use and by the help of the Holy Spirit, so we could be able to turn the town over to the Lord.

I came to the place with two of my fire brand team members by the leadings of the Holy Spirit, because the mission field I understood was not for weaklings or babies in faith.

Since I and sister Cynthia had preached in the first two previous buses, it was sister Tomiwa’s (short for Tommy) turn to preach in the last bus that took us to our mission destination.

I noticed that the young lady beside me was listening to the sermon with rapt attention. She even closed her eyes tightly when sister Tommy was about to pray. But what I did not understand about this lady was why she came out in the broad day light half naked like that. It would have been better if she didn’t put on any clothes and be confused for a mad woman than that show of shame.

I was quite irritated by her appearance the moment she entered the bus and picked the space beside me at the rear side of the bus. I made a move to change my seat when I suddenly remembered the verses the Holy Spirit gave me that morning during my quiet time and this made me to act otherwise. The verses in the 10th chapter of the book of Acts told a story about Peter’s vision where God asked him to eat food that Peter considered to be uncleaned. The fifteenth verse caught my attention and I meditated on it not knowing that God was preparing me for this encounter.

As we alighted from the bus, the lady quickly moved closer to sister Tommy and began to ask some questions. We looked for a shed (in the garage) with few people and took our sit on a long bench meant for waiting passengers.

The questions kept pouring out and this caught sister Tommy off guard. Caro needed a practical answers to her questions so I took over the conversation and with the help of the Holy Spirit, I was able to give her some satisfactory response.

She couldn’t see any connections between our holy God as we had described him and her filthy life. I shed

more light on God’s characteristics by letting her know that God loved her unconditionally, even in her filthiness, but what he only required from her was to embrace his love and be washed by his blood which was shed on the cross of Calvary and her life would become as white as snow.

“Sister, may be you don’t know what i am talking about. I was born into prostitution. My mother introduced me into the business when I was ten after I got raped by one of her customers who later bribed her with a large sum of money. Since then it became a selling point for us. We began to share one man at a time many times. Many of our customers found it fun to sleep with mother and daughter together on the same bed at the same time. But to us it meant double charges and big cash. I have involved in countless abortions but my mother died a couple of months ago and was since buried. I just brought in a new inmate with whom I had continued to do my ‘two sum’ services with and we are making lots of money, but I have no peace ever since my mother died of the unknown illnees. I am too dirty for your God to accept me”. She said defeatedly.

I smiled and looked into her eyes. I told her my story from Genesis to revelation not excluding the part that my womb was destroyed. She sobbed all through my story.

“……so dear sister, if God can receive me, you are not too dirty for God to accept…just repent of your wrong ways and come back to your maker.” I was saying.

“No!” She cut in.

“…. I don’t want to be deceived, if I stop my business, how am I going to make ends meet and I know, God cannot accept a wretch like me …..” She said, as she was shaking her head.

After much persuasion, the others signalled to me to let her be but I wasn’t going to let go.

THE NIGHT I TURNED 18

@ Olutope Olonade

Episode 27

At the end a very long discurssions which more like a debate, Caro submitted to the Lord. We both had weighted the consequences of clinging to a sinful life and accepting a new life with little challenges that would soon fade away with time if the right decision was taken.

The holy Spirit later opened her understanding that the only source of the kind of peace she was looking for was God. And she finally made up her mind to follow her maker for perfect peace to reign in her life.

I had no doubt in my heart that she was the connection that had provided us with to reach to our target because she didn’t allow us to be until she succeeded in inviting us to come and speak to her room mate and other prostitutes in her compound about our God.

Who was I to condemn what the Lord was set to make clean. My other sisters were reluctant to go at first but later followed her as I took the lead.

As we entered into the compound we met with these bevy of beauties but it was very unfortunate that their kind of beauties smelled of decadence. But I was confidently sure that more souls were going to be won for God in that compound.

“The field is green and the Lord of their lives has come to harvest their souls.” I giggled at the thought and an alluring sweet fresh happiness flooded my heart.

That night would ever be in my memory. The night that replaced and erased the night of pains, lost, deaths, blood shed, tortures and regrets that the night of my 18th year birthday brought. It was my 22nd birthday, and instead of loosing precious lives, the Lord gave me abundance joy and fulfilment as gift as more souls that were dead in sins became living souls in him.

It was a night that I would always remember with a trembling. A night that spoke about the awesomeness of God. A night like the day of Pentecost.

It started with a silent worship because we didn’t want to make too much noise so as not to disturb other prostitutes because we knew they could force our hosts out of the compound if we dare make them uncomfortable and that could counter our initial plans. But the silent worship drew the hands of God who bathed our new converts with His Spirit and they began to speak in tongues. What happened in the house of collenius in the book of Acts was happening right in the small room that night. Little Aisha, Rekia’s daughter flew into the realm of prophesy and she started calling on to other inmates to accept the Lord and change their ways because the time of doom was at hand. She began to quote the word of God to everyone’s amazement. This was a girl who did not know how to read well or had ever held a Bible until that night.

This unbelievable scene attracted many of them into the room and it got to a time that we had to come out into the middle of the compound. Many of their customers ran away because the whole thing was turning into a rowdy crusade. In one night almost half of the ladies in “Girls on fire colony” had given their lives to the Lord.

We left the compound on the third day, but before then we’ve already started a functioning fellowship. God gave me a new name for them which was “Holy fire sisters’ camp”. We went back to campus fellowship with lists of different needs to engage and establish the new converts.

After giving the fellowship executive our report. Sisters Tommy and Cynthia were put in charge of sensitizing other sisters to bring in free donations of good clothes and other ladies adorements. I made several calls to my friends and sponsors and met with some Christian charity organizations for assistance.

The new fellowship president, Brother Bello, (who was fondly called by fellowship members as Papa), also met with some church authorities and it was amazing the supports and sponsorship we enjoyed from them all.

The following week, saw us enmass in the ghetto making “Girls on fire colony” turned “Holy fire sisters’ camp” our base. Having gone round the small town in buses and public address systems talking about the goodnews and the goodness of God. We invited them to the camp where food stuffs, clothes, shoes and cash gifts were distributed to people after each day revival which lasted for seven days.

All hands were on deck as different trainers on different skills, ranging (among other things) from clothes designing, hair dressing, hat making, catering, bag designing to other profitable skills were on ground especially for sisters on camp.

Apart from the vocational skills, we took names of those who were still interested to further their education, of course Rekia’s name topped the list.

One of the CCO (Christian charity organization) pledged to buy the land off because it has a large space for the mission purpose. Immediately, a committee was set up to meet the owner who was willing to buy it because the bargain was far greater than what he expected. So in just two weeks the land was permanently bought for mission work. I was unanimously chosen as the missioner to be in charge of the mission field by the Christian campus fellowship executives and members.

The remaining weeks were full of activities of teachings, counselings, fellowship meetings which kept me and some selected and committed team members tirelessly busy.

I sold myself into giving the spiritual, emotional, physical, moral and financial needs of the new converts for restoration. Our regular morning cries became a source of inspiration and encouragement for other Christians who had been hiding before. They also broke away from their chains of fears, limitations and came out boldly to preach the gospel.

This new development attracted so many other ministers of God into the slum and in no time, there was an influx of many churches and ministries in the the towns.

At last the end of the first seamster break came and we needed to return to campus. The sisters were not willing to release me but I didn’t have a choice than to leave.

THE NIGHT I TURNED 18

@ Olutope Olonade

Episode 28

I was not willing to leave the sisters too but I had no choice than to return to my academics in full. Especially, for some of us who were final year students. We needed to get busy with projects, attending impromtu lecture hours and preparing for the final exams. But I didn’t want to leave the new converts at that early stage without a proper handing over to capable hands. The skill acquisition were still going on and needed continuous supervision. Fellowship meetings and counselling unit had to be led spirit filled vessels.

The sisters were eager to know more about the Lord; they hungered for food of life and thirsthed for living waters from God. They were sheep that needed to be fed with fresh green grasses of the word. They also needed to be guided and guarded so that we wouldn’t loose then again to the wolves in the world. Their souls were as important to me more than my life.

I prayed with my team members for God to lead us to the right vessels. So I contacted two of them because the Lord had chosen them to stand in for me till my busy schedule was over.

They arrived the camp with other two ministers both male and female, respectively. After the introduction I took them to my office while the ministers attended to the people who were around for counseling. I thank God that the ministers were fitting into their roles quickly and perfectly and the sisters were getting use to them almost immediately, but they cheered and prayed for my success. They didn’t allow me to leave the hall until they reminded me of my duty to the Lord through them and that I should always remember them in my prayers and come to check on them once in while.

Despite the fact that I told them that, I would be back before they knew it yet many of them cried while some just hugged me and made me promised again and again not to neglect them. I never knew, I could still be this useful to humanity.

“Thank you Lord, for making me a vessel unto honour”. I muttered while struggling to keep back the tears that was gathering to roll out of my eye lids.

I welcomed Pastor and Pastor Mrs David and Amaka Williams. Yes! You guessed right. Inspite of their short comings, the Lord was bent on retaining them as my guardian angels. I had come to realize that if God said yes to something, no matter how odd or werd it looks or feels like his words are ye and amen. The couple were one of my leading sponsors and strong pillars in my academics and ministry. I loved them so much. It might sound very unrealistic or unbelievable but seriously, you wanted to walk with God and enjoy his mercy, you must posses a forgiven heart. No other way around it. This is a key to peace and freedom of mind.

Though it wasn’t easy to forgive and forget such great measure of atrocities committed against me but by his grace and a new life in the Lord many impossibilities were made possible.

The journey began this way. Few weeks into my new life in Christ, I felt a burden in my Spirit to settle my differences with David and Amaka. Before then all their effort to plead their course with me had proofed abortive because I held on to my bitterness against them. I made a clear signal that they must not bear me because I didn’t want anything to do with them ever again. Despite Charles pleadings which later turned to warnings…..I didn’t think they deserve my forgiveness not to talk of God’s. I hated them so much that I never wanted to remember or had their names mentioned in any of my conversation. Hatred was an understatement, I detest them with all my being and I had promised to take revenge anytime the opportunity comes forth. But before I realized it I gave my life to Christ and became a new creature old had to pass away and everything had to become new. This were the kind of word based teachings I received day in day out. The holy Spirit was delibrately bringing topics on forgiveness my way. “….a child of God must not hold grudges or bitterness against anyone no matter how bad they’ve hurt you …..” Though it was difficult initially for me to take a decision to make peace but the teachings on restitution and rapture brought an alarming fear into my heart and with help of the spirit if God I surmoned up my courage and made up my mind.

I asked Charles to arrange a meeting with them and he did.

Amaka and David had since went their separate ways. Amaka refused to yield to the erring David’s constant pleadings. Amidst emotions and tears I finally forgave the duo. Amaka hugged me as tears freely flowed from her eyes. She knew I had truely forgave them. I disengaged with her.

” Amaka, if you think that my forgiving you both for what you did for me is easy then I lied. Yet I have to do it because of my peace of mind, so can merit my forgiveness only if you also can find a place in your heart to forgive David too. I know he had hurt you too deep and had played on your emotions…I suffered in his hands too….and if you want to measure it you know mine is greater than yours …please forgive and let by gone be…” I requested clutching her tightly.

It took Amaka some minutes before she said David had been forgiven. I withdrew from her and looked through her eyes to find out if she was sincere with her utterance. She nodded and so I believed her.

I later faced David where he was standing beside Charles, his face down.

“David, I know you have listened to some Christians talk about the end time and rapture for many times. Probably you still among those who think it’s a fiery tale from the Bible as I used to believe before. Many things may not be real but it important for you to know and to absorb the uncompromising truth that he’ll is the undoubtful eternal end for unrepentant sinners and every careless Christians. David …..there is a good news that it doesn’t matter how deep you have sunk into the pit of sins ….God loves us the reason why he sent Jesus to die to save us from eternal damnation and clutches of hell. Dave…” I called his pet name softly and he gently raised his head with misty eyes.

“….I knew I have been selfish and ungrateful to Amaka….and unfaithful and mean to you too Abike….but am truly sorry. Everyday, I see my evil starring at face. I have been a play boy since childhood. I only see girls as play things ever since Clara, maid that was hired by my mother introduced me to sexual activities at an early age of 7. Clara has also been sleeping with my elder brothers who now reside abroad and just out having her fun filled she put me on the line. At first it was terrifying but later, I began to enjoy it. She was caught sleeping with my brothers and was sent away oblivious of her influence on me too. I began sexual escapades by sleeping with small girls ib the neighborhood. I don’t fall in love but only has lustful desures toward women. But it has always been different Amaka. What I felt for her is real…I truly love her but it’s only that I can’t control myself lustful desires I have sunk too deep into the pit of sin ….and…and…”. He couldn’t finish his statement.

“…..it’s okay David….” I cut in.

“…..but today there is a grace from God which can pull you out of that out and make you pass through a laundry at Calvary. The liquid soap in the laundry machine is the blood of Jesus which thouroughly cleanse and make you as white and bright as snow…..but you can’t continue to nail him with this dirty attitude….just tell him you are sorry and ask for the grace to sin no more. He will forgive you and give you grace to live above sins, once you get committed to him through the help of holy spirit…..”. I offered conclusively.

I didn’t know where those words were coming from. I just got born again not quite long but I guessed Charles had really done a great job with me in feeding with the word of God. He too continued to gaze at me in admiration.

“Abike…. sincerely I want to be a changed person…i am sorry for the pains I caused everyone I am ready if the Lord would cleanse me…..”. I remembered the prayer that Charles prayed for me the everyone surrendered to the Lord. I prayed the same prayer and welcomed him into the fold of Christ as Charles has welcomed me.

“Thank God I feel relieved…”. David said as he heaved a sigh of relief.

They both appreciated us and left the room together. We watched them through the window. David got hold of Amaka’s hands. She didn’t not withdraw. He took her car keys and they drove off.

I stood there gazing through the window even after the love birds had left. I rejoiced with David, to think he was my first convert! A flip of the past pages slightly opened I felt a pinch of regret in my heart. I had allowed my destiny to be rough ridden by fate and my eyes refused to open up to the truth not until it pushed me hard on the ground. Though it seemed I have risen again and my wound had treated by mercy …..

“…..but what about the scare it leaves on my life can it ever be removed” . I asked absentmindedly aloud.

Charles came and stood beside me.

“…..Abike the balm of Gilead is available for you to give you a complete healing from your soul, heart and spirit. It will penetrate into your body and get rid of the scares forever…..just keep trusting and obeying him”. He said smoothly.

The words went a long way in comforting me and restoring my peace. I forgot the teacherous way fate had dealt with me and concentrated in renewing my live in Christ to fulfilling my Devine purpose in life.

Few weeks later, I was sitting alone in Charles room one Friday evening studying my Bible. I didn’t know why verse five of the Bible in Psalm thirty caught my attention. “….. Sorrow may endure for the night but joy comes in the morning…..” I knew the Holy Spirit was trying to lay an emphasis on the verse for me but I didn’t quite get the message.

“When and how will joy come to me…. I have tried to love, but it ended in disaster, I have lost my womb, the hope of bearing my own children is shattered forever, soon I will start looking for accommodation because Charles will soon leave for his national service in the east side. Dear Lord where exactly is the joy coming from…..?”

THE. NIGHT I TURNED 18

@ Olutope Olonade

Episode 29

“…Your good deeds are not enough to bring you near his holy place……morality can fail you….and involving in many church activities only do not guarantee you for eternal blissfulness with Christ. Beloved, you need to know who the Lord is and develop a cordial relationship with him. You need his confirmation that yes! You are truly his…..I prayed that our labour on earth will not be in vain….” I prayed and the congregation chorused “amen” .

“……as I was saying, he cannot count you among his own if you do not declare to his hearing that you want him and take a step to invite him into your life as your Lord and saviour. Listen, today may be the last chance you have with him, so you need to take a decision now and settle with your creator….” I kept on with the altar call and within few minutes people with a sober reflection began to move toward the altar . But I was surprise to see Amaka among them because she was supposed to be in her service station in the North. She cried through the prayer section after which I stepped down from the pulpit to embraced her. I congratulated her and welcomed her afresh into the fold of Christ genuinely.

I saw Amaka to her car and she opened the rear door and brought out a big brown envelope. She smiled lightly as she dipped her hand into the envelope and brought out a small white envelope and handed it over to me. I checked the back of the envelope and saw my former school’s stamp on it. I was looking at her bright face as I quickly opened the envelope. Alas! The letter read that I had been granted a transfer from the Northern Region University to the Central University to continue with my law course. Amaka smiled again and gave me another small green envelope. This one had the Central University logo on it. I opened the letter and the content said I had been given an admission into the university to complete my course. Amaka brought out some documents from the big envelope while one of them confirmed my three years school fees payment the other revealed that my accommodation in the school hostel had been fixed for three years and a check of two hundred thousand for my upkeep was attached to it. I was too excited to continued reading the other documents so I jumped up and let out a shout of joy.

“Jeeezus!” I shouted.

Some of the fellowship members who had not left came rushing towards us. The fellowship president jumped outside with fear and demanded to know the reason for my outbust. But after my testimonies, the shouts of “hallelujah!” echoed in the air. While some people were rolling on the ground not minding if their clothes get dirty others were jumping and singing songs of praise. Papa held on to me and worshipped God.

“Sister Abike, didn’t I tell you that God is set to do something great in your life ….?” I nodded.

“…..this is the Lord’s doing and it’s marvelous in our sight…..you will never run out favour again in life…..” He prayed and everyone shouted “ameeeeen” in response. Papa thanked Amaka and we left the fellowship in Amaka’s car.

Amaka spent the night with me because she wanted to put me through my registration procedures and other necessary proceses the next day.

Before we sleep that night I went down on my knees to thank my angel for her kindness towards me. I never knew she could still remember to fulfill her promise. She quickly drew me to herself and asked for my forgiveness for all the pains she had put me through.

” My dear sister, I have told you that I have forgiven you and truly I have…. Let’s forget the past and open a new chapter of life. What I want you to know that God used the incident to humble me and to draw me nearer to him. Although, I was born into a Christian home and my parents were strong believers but I didn’t believe in God. I only believed in my parents; their wealth, affluence, powers and position and in myself; my beauty and brains. I thought with all these intact the sky was not the limit. Sermons, prayers, praise and worship to my creator was a boring burden to me but I was wrong! God proofed me wrong. As you can see all of that failed now. God proofed to me that without him I am nothing….Amaka, if you are running in a smooth lane of life don’t ever make that mistake that it’s all your effort…..if God did not build the house, the builders build in vain….When God told me that …..joy cometh in the morning. I couldn’t picture how it would come …. hnmmmmmm…….I am sorry Lord for doubting you”. I pleaded. She nodded.

“You are God from beginning to the end there’s no cause for arguments….you are God all by yourself…” I sang and Amaka joined in.

“Amaka, how did you do it?” I asked. I was curious to know because after the meeting I had with her and David, we never saw each other again.

“My dad”. She stated.

“……you know I told you that I would inform him. Oblivious of things were happening between us, he was going on with the processing. Thank God the crisis in the North subsided and the school resumed again. My father connected with the Deen of your falculty to procure the necessary documents for the transfer process and your high grades also helped a lot because on seeing your beautiful GP, our department was more than eager to absorb you and so the university admitted you”. She said as she raised her right hand high with some levy of pride in her tone.

I laughed at her demonstrations of my GP. I appreciated her again and asked when she would take me to her father so that I could show him my sense of gratitude. But she told me that I wouldn’t be able to meet with her father because he wasn’t in the country. She dialled her dad’s number. I thanked Chief Badmus for his generosity and promised to make his efffort on me to be worthwhile.

We completed the registration process the following day. We returned home. On arriving into the room, Amaka knelt down in front of me. I wanted to pull her up but she insisted on being in that position until I hear her out. I was wondering what was it again. I repeated that I had forgiven her for everything.

“Abike, I know that no matter how nice I am to you, it would not be able to erase all the pains I have caused you especially in the area of fertility. I don’t want you to think that I am using all kind gestures to bride you or pay you off concerning what I am about to say. Sincerely if you say no, I will go with you because I have come to realize the dept of love I have for you and we are no longer friends but sisters from different parents.” She said amidst sobs.

I knelt down also and raised her face up to mine.

“Amaka, you are my sister….my angel and you will always be. The word of God said that love covers multitude of sins. My dear, I love you very much and nothing can change that. See, I am also not totally blameless in all that happened I didn’t inform you early enough and I would not have listened to you if you asked me not to date David in the first place because then I was consumed in my lustful desires. So stop condemning yourself. And as for my womb, there is a balm at Gilead and the blood of healing is flowing still….” I said convincingly. I had determined in my heart not to allow my past to hold me in captive. Because I know my Redeemer liveth I would face tommorow without fear.

Her request was my blessings concerning her union with David. I asked if she was not under any kind of pressure into marrying David because marriage is a life time contract and she had to be sure. She confessed that her love for David was still intact and she could see a lot of changes in him since the day he gave his life to Christ and she was convinced in her heart that God had a purpose for their relationship.

Having heard that, I happily and genuinely gave her my blessings. It was too late for Amaka to go back to her base so she spent another night with me.

The second day after Amaka left, I called Charles on phone to give him the good news. He was very happy for me and blessed the name of the Lord for his mercies. I was still using Charles room even after he left for his national service in the easthern side. He made sure he paid for extra six months and promised to be back before the payment lapse.

I put my whole self in my studies and in the gospel. I barely had time for frivolities. In no time my GP had started confirming me to the falculty as I became one of their best students. I was included among the school judges. My zeal for kingdom business was unrelenting and so also my spiritual gifts began to increase. The word of God became fire in my mouth. After six months, Charles came to check on me as he had promised. He renewed his house rent by six months again. He told me he didn’t want to loose contact with the environment. But Charles did not come to do that alone, he also came with a request that brought a great burden into my heart.

THE NIGHT I TURNED 18

@ Olutope Olonade

Episode 30

We left the fellowship center after the service to Charles house at his insistence. It was five days since he came back from his service station for a break. He opened the door and let me into his room. I looked round the room again and again and smiled. It had been a whole six months since I packed out of here to the female hostel. I loved the memory the room that hosted with at the climax of my confused life and broke me away from my state of delusion into the right way of salvation.

I looked back and saw my mentor, my spiritual father who had patiently and painstakingly nutured me into maturity in Christ. Under his tutorship I had found hope in the love of Christ. I smiled at the thought.

Charles stood at the door way and smiled back. He asked me the reasons for my smiles. I didn’t answer him. I just nodded. I remembered when he was warning me against putting my trust in man. Then it sounded like a religious jargons but now I know better. He closed the door behind him and moved closer to me. I saw some changes in his countenance but I couldn’t place it. He knelt down before my confused self. I didn’t quite understand his actions because as far as I could remember he didn’t offend me.

“Abike….” He called softly. I answered him and asked why he was behaving strangely.

“….. please be my wife”. He said with his eyes glued to mine.

“…your wife..?” I asked in great amazement. His request really caught me off guard. He nodded in agreement.

“Why do you want to marry me?” I asked, not knowing what to say.

“… because I just realised that I love you and I have a conviction that you are the woman for me”. He said confidently.

I reminded him of the condition of my womb in case he had forgotten. How could he proposed to me when he knew I couldn’t conceive not to talk of bearing a child. I had put the experience behind me and really I didn’t want anything to remind me of my disabilities. Besides, I was not ready for any relationship. Not now, not tomorrow, not forever! So I started leaving but he held me down. He stood up and made me face him.

“Abike, though I am a strong believer of God’s prophecies and revelations but I do not totally submit to visions and dreams when it’s comes to choosing a life partner because the devil is cunning. So I won’t lie to you that I saw you in my dreams or visions but as a genuine child of God with his spirit in me, I am very sure that I am not making any mistake choosing as my better half.” He said.

I was not ready to be cajoled into any relationship again. I have learnt my lesson. I started shaking my head slowly but he kept on persuading me.

“….Abike, listen to me, you are not God”……He was saying.

“Charles, I don’t want a pity party marriage….you know my story….you know my condition. I am not ready to go through series of heartaches in anybody’s hands ….just let me be. I am contented with my new life. God has been my joy, love and peace. I see you as a father in faith not as a husband. Tell me, what is the essence of marriage without a child?” I asked with flood of tears flowing through my eyes. But Charles wouldn’t let go of me.

“Abike….I love you. It doesn’t mather whether you bear me a child or not. Marriage is firstly, for couple to bond because it’s for companionship, then to prevent us from committing the sin of fornication. Child bearing was the least reason. Besides, we are not God. The God we serve is the God of all flesh and nothing….Abike … nothing is impossible for him to do…”

“No, I am not going to put God to test….” I cut in.

“…..because he did not put me in this condition. I called for it so, Charles look elsewhere. There are many beautiful sisters in the fold that have not spoiled their inner beauty, go for one of them and be happy. My pride has been taken away. My beauty is bruised. The wound from the bite of my past sins may not heal as you expected. I do not want to be a burden to you. You don’t deserve somebody like me.” I said regrettably trying hard to hold back my tears.

“….if God wanted me to go for another woman, he would not have led me to you….and if it’s the wounds you sustained from the bite of sins ….we both together will seek the balm of Gilead for healing, I trust God. I love you and I have no doubts in me that you are the will of God for me. So don’t just wave me away. Please go and pray about my proposal. I am sure if it’s God that laid it in my spirit, he will also reveal himself to you too because the spirit of God is one…..” He paused and looked beyond me.

“….I will return to my service station tomorrow. Please Abike go and give it a well thought and pray for confirmation.” He said with a final note.

He released me and wiped away my tears. He comforted me with more words of encouragement that I should trust in the Lord that He, who had began a good thing in my life would surely accomplished it. As for him, he wouldn’t care a hoot over childlessness. He had so many spiritual children who considered him to be their father. But If it was God’s will for him to have biological children…no medical report could stop him and he was certain that I was going to be the mother of his children.

My heart skipped at the measure of his faith but anyways, I was the one at the receiving end here.

He led me to the door with a promise to check back on me very soon. He waved a cab for me and kept waving at me as the cab started moving. He was still by the road side waving and smiling painfully as my cab got out of his sight. I felt a pain in my heart too. With what transpired between us that night it was very certain that I was going to miss him dearly.

” …Lord help me…… I know that Charles loves mes…… I hope he actually hears from you and not from his emotions, because sincerely Lord I don’t want to be a burden to anyone…but I want happiness, even if I do not deserve it…let your mercy speak Lord .” I prayed silently and heaved a heavy sight.

I went straight to my room. Thank God I didn’t meet Matha, my roommate in the room so I pulled off my clothes and headed for the bathroom to have a cold shower after which I put on my night wears. I didn’t feel like eating dinner so I went straight to bed.

I didn’t know if it was a vision or a dream because barely two minutes that my body hit the mattress I saw my dad. He came with a revelation that shock my bones to the marrow.

To be continued…..