Category: Uncategorized

PLUNGING INTO HOT WATERS

PLUNGING INTO HOT WATERS

I get so upset when my son runs ahead of me into the bathroom especially after I have told him to wait. Oh, point of correction; I mean, after I yell at him to wait. So there is no way he can tell me he didn’t hear, right? But children love water so much, they don’t care about the consequences of their disobedience.

You may be wondering why I should prevent my son from running ahead of me into the bathroom when he loves the water anyway. It is because the hot water in the bucket or tub may not have been properly mixed to the right temperature to prevent scalding, or the bathroom may be slippery, etc. The child may gladly dismiss her parent’s warning only to plunge into injurious hot waters.

Recently, this scenario brought to mind a very interesting topic among Christians which is; when the answer to prayer is wait. Most of us including myself really hate this answer to prayer because when our flesh wants something, we must have it now! But could it be, that like children who dismiss the voice of their parents to wait, we could be plunging into injurious hot waters? Could it be that when we run ahead of God, we could come out with scalds instead of stars?

The bible tells us in Isaiah 30:18 “Therefore the LORD waits to be gracious to you, and therefore he exalts himself to show mercy to you. For the LORD is a God of justice; blessed are all those who wait for him.” Imagine how the scenario would have been different, if after checking to make sure the bathroom was devoid of hazard, my son who had been patiently waiting outside the bathroom would walk in to enjoy my protective supervision? He would enjoy playing with the water, soap, sponge etc. without experiencing unnecessary injury.

We may think this only pertains to children, but such daily scenarios always takes place as our heavenly father watches each of us from above. Do we wait to follow his lead into safe and bliss or are we always plunging into injurious hot waters? Most of us are victims of the latter because waiting has become excruciating. Why can’t I have that marriage now? So we plunge ahead! Why can’t I have that job now? So ahead we go! Why can’t I do that course now? Why can’t I get that promotion now? Why can’t I have that baby now? On and on we go, sometimes taking steps contrary to the will of God and even the Word of God just to satisfy our flesh. Deeper into injurious hot waters we daily plunge.

Waiting has never been easy but let us encourage ourselves with Psalm 27:13-14 which says, “I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living! Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD!” and 2 Peter 3:9 “The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”

And after the grueling wait under the watchful eyes of our father in heaven, let us be the ones to say “But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31. Let us not faint in our wait, for it is better to wait on the Lord than to plunge into injurious hot waters.

Photo credit : terriza

 

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A PAIR OF SANDALS FOR A SOUL

A PAIR OF SANDALS FOR A SOUL

I recently participated in a week long crusade activity in the Volta Region of Ghana where I learnt an interesting lesson. I didn’t consider packing enough clothing and extra footwear for the evening crusades because I said to myself; “I will be staying only for a week and can use the prescribed “T” shirts for both day and night.” Wrong thinking! Since it was the first time I would be working on crusade grounds, I had not anticipated the amount of work involved. After a hard day’s work of helping with food distribution and arranging chairs, my “T” Shirt was smelling of perspiration and looked dirty. And although it was not the best choice for an evening night service, I had to welcome the discomfort at least for the first night.

The next day, I was determined to locate a shop nearby for extra clothing and an additional pair of sandals to relieve my aching feet. I had never been to the Volta region and had no idea how to pick a taxi, how to locate a market nearby or how to bargain with the traders.  As I walked along the road, I spotted a clothing store in which the seller spoke English making it easy for me to lament about my plight. I bought a few affordable shirts to manage with a long black skirt I had brought along. Now what was left was a decent pair of sandals. The clothing seller was kind enough to direct me to the market and give me an indication of how much pair of sandals would cost. With her help, I was able to board a taxi and mention the exact place I would alight.

With little trouble, I located the market and headed for the shoe section. As I scanned through the traders, I spotted an elderly man of about 65 years and was drawn to him thinking he would be more considerate in his pricing. I was pleasantly surprised that most of them could speak some English making our communication easier. I asked for the price of a lovely pair of sandals which also looked durable among the lot. I was surprised when he mentioned an outrageously high price. Although I have always been good at bargaining, I realized he was also tough at selling his goods.

I explained to him that it was my first time in Ho for a crusade and that I didn’t have enough money on me. We went back and forth until we settled on 50 Ghana Cedis (12 dollars). Because he refused to back down any further and went on and on about it’s durability, I thought I had paid for a pair of sandals that would last for a very long time. I then took the opportunity to invite him and others nearby to that evening’s crusade at the jubilee park. I told him about the previous night’s service and how he would not regret attending the service. I went to further explain the importance of getting to know Christ and see the powerful men of God who had travelled from Accra and outside Ghana just to be a blessing to him.

When I left the market, I had less money on me but I was happy I had invited few people to come to the crusade. In fact, even though the elderly trader told me he would make it to the crusade that evening, I did not take his word for it. I had done my part and decided to leave the rest to God.

I arrived at the jubilee park where thousands had gathered at around 8.00pm that evening. Fortunately, my friends and I found available find seats in front. That night, I was amazed by the praise and worship performed in the Ewe dialect. Almost all the local Twi songs I was familiar with were sang in Ewe. It was a delight to watch how the people danced to the glory of God. I just couldn’t be content in my seat as I saw others dancing in praise of God. Walking confidently in my new sandals, I joined other worshipers in front of the stage and began to dance with joy.

Suddenly, I became unstable on my feet because the left heel of my brand new sandals had come off. I quickly removed the right heel to give me more stability. As if that was not enough, the straps also gave way bringing my dancing to an abrupt and disappointing end. I continued to stand among the dancers looking longingly at them as I became very disappointed at the elderly trader who had knowingly taken 50 Ghana Cedis from me in exchange for a pair of shoes that could not even last a night.

As I wobbled back to my seat careful not to completely destroy my sandals, I heard someone call out to me. I wondered who could be calling me among thousands of people because I had not seen any familiar faces around. I turned to the sound of the voice and to my surprise, I saw the elderly shoe trader waving cheerfully at me. I instantly forgot that he had sold an inferior good to me, that I had to stop dancing because of him. I was just happy he had come to the crusade because of me. I was even more surprised at where he chosen to sit without any prior knowledge that he would see the one who invited him. Amidst the thousands of seats, he picked a seat where he saw me among the multitude and called out to me.

This was no coincidence; It was God at work assuring me that I had not invited him in vain. When the preacher invited people to come forward to give their lives to Christ that night, he also went forward. It didn’t matter to me that he had cheated me and left me almost barefooted as a result. It didn’t matter to me that the money I wasted could have been put to better use. All that mattered was his soul; A soul that cannot be bought with 50 Ghana Cedis. A soul that had already been paid for when Jesus died on the cross. A soul that cost a life!

BLUE BALLS IS NOT AN EXCUSE FOR SEX

BLUE BALLS IS NOT AN EXCUSE FOR SEX

I am always at my wits end when I hear some of the ridiculous reasons why some woman give in to premarital sex against their better judgement. I have heard once too often that some have fallen prey to the popular or should I say unpopular blue balls syndrome. Since I grew up without a brother and attended a girls’ high school, I must say I am not an authority on the male anatomy. As a result, this blue balls syndrome has always piqued my curiosity.

According to wikipedia, “Blue balls is a slang term for the condition of temporary fluid congestion (vasocongestion) in the testicles accompanied by testicular pain, caused by prolonged sexual arousal in the human male without ejaculation. The term is thought to have originated in the United States, first appearing in 1916. Some urologists call the condition “epididymal hypertension; A condition that is not experienced by all males.”

Another article on cosmopolitan.com titled What exactly happens when a guy gets blue balls? Or is this just a myth?” also caught my attention.  According to the author, “If a sexually aroused guy does not ejaculate, there is a buildup of pressure, and his super sensitive balls feel the brunt of it. The sensation can range from a mild ache to worse-than-getting-kicked-in-the-crotch pain.”

He further explained that “it is not dangerous, and the guy can deal with it, whether that means helping himself out or waiting it out. The blood will eventually drain and any discomfort will disappear on its own. It’s called blue balls because the blood that has been in the scrotum for a while loses oxygen and can give the appearance of a bluish tinge.”

With a better understanding of what blue balls really is, the question that plagues my mind is whether it is a justification for a woman to give in to premarital sex. I do empathize with the men who go through this excruciating pain at the point of sexual arousal. However, I do not agree that a woman should be coerced into sex or should I rather say give in to sex to alleviate this pain.

2 Peter 1:5-7 reads “For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love.” To the brother who feels the only way he can alleviate his pain is through sex, self- control is a better option. Men who have learned to control themselves have kept trouble at bay.

Also, according to 1 Corinthians 10:13, No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. Another key here is endurance and not gratification at all cost. Blue balls is not a justification for premarital sex.

Another point worthy of note is that women also experience pain. Physical pain that can be far more excruciating than blue balls. This happens just by virtue of their biological make up. These include menstrual pain, ovulation pain, child birth pain, painful miscarriages, painful sex etc.

1 Corinthians 6:18-19 says “Run from sexual sin! No other sin clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body. Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself.”

1 Thessalonians 4:3-5 “For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God.”

Premarital sex has far reaching consequences than blue balls. So to a sister who thinks she is being cruel by refusing to alleviate someone’s blue balls pain through sex, I say weigh your options. Remember that apart from incurring the wrath of God, you risk dealing with an unwanted pregnancy, a sexuality transmitted disease, an abortion, guilt, shame and a possible broken heart from the same person whose blue balls pain you helped alleviate.

MY BODY IS NO LONGER FOR SALE!

MY BODY IS NO LONGER FOR SALE!

NB: This story is purely fictional and a result of my active imaginations. It is unrelated to any person dead or alive; any such resemblance is purely coincidental.

Amanda was single- handedly raised by her mother when her father died at the tender age of four. Her mother worked hard to ensure she had a good education and life’s basic comforts. Despite this, she fell into bad company when she entered the university. Lured by a group of friends who introduced her to a notorious pimp, her life took a turn for the worst. No more was she satisfied with the little her mother gave her. She became aware of the fact that with her graceful body, she could acquire more possessions for herself. Little did she know that she was gradually turning into something she had sworn never to become, a prostitute. By the time she realized where her greed had taken her, it was too late. After a year, she was afraid of leaving the group for fear of victimization. They threatened to expose her if she ever backed out. Furthermore, her shame prevented her from going home to her mother who had discovered her secret. Her mother begged her to return to the God who never left her. The beckoning of the Holy Spirit was becoming stronger by the day. An ugly encounter with her pimp was all the excuse she needed to run back to the place of security. Enough was enough, she stopped running from God and submitted to him. He was the only one who could turn her situation around.

 

 

God,

My heart bleeds in response to its ache. My body is so used and tired; I feel like 55 instead of 25. How did I get here? How did I go so far from you? How did I allow myself to be used like this, shoving the love you have for me in your face? Have I proved to you that sending your son to die for my sake was in vain?

Do you look down at me with disgust and regret creating me after your own image? Oh, how lucky I am that when you sigh, it does not blow me away into the pit of hell. That is where I deserve to be. If I could get away with it, I would take my own life and risk heaven. But I know better even though my life is bitter.

I have tried coming back to you several times but my head hangs so low; I cannot lift it up to you. I am grateful that even with my head buried in the ground my words are audible to you oh mighty God. Save me from myself! I am tired just as my body is tired. I am tired of the whispered lies of love in my ears at night. My mind is filled with Lies from men who want nothing but a moment of pleasure.

I am tired of how my body has been invaded making me an open book for every man to read. I am tired of the rough hands that daily grasp my tender breasts. I am tired of the pain and the useless gains. I am tired of my guilt, which evades my conscience reminding me of who I have become.

I am tired of the looks of lust in the eyes of men old enough to be my father. I am tired of how they disregard my mind like junk when I attempt an intelligent conversation. I am tired of the looks of pity as people pass me by; I dread the thoughts they think of me. I am tired of turning my head in another direction to avoid the looks in peoples’ eyes when they see me by the roadside. I am tired of how they move further away as if afraid I will infect them with a dreadful disease just by coming close. Oh lord, I am weary!

My disregard for the church close to where I stand at night looking for clients tears at my soul. My crime is greater because I defile my body that is your holy temple as well as the church built in which to worship you. The beauty you endowed me with has condemned me; I could not use it for your glory. I have misused the wisdom you gave me and directed it into folly. Your mercy is all I seek; I can ask of nothing more. Even though I have more belongings, I am perishing with the weight of sin.

Because of me, innocent men have fallen prey to seduction leaving them as helpless victims. Many could not survive the temptation when I exposed my breasts and my private parts to them in the dark. I am always ready to extract their riches causing them misfortunes. When the catholic priest I was able to lure into my bed run out weeping, my power over him gave me no joy. His shame was enough to destroy my gain. My conscience is dead and no longer convicts me. When did the Holy Spirit depart from me depart? I searched and found him no more.

When did the clothes that covered my body become so easy to discard? Little by little, ignoring the promptings of the Holy Spirit, I took your mercy and forgiveness for granted. I have entangled myself in a web of sin. You alone can disentangle the web in which I find myself; I cannot come out of it unless you save me. Going deeper into sin was easier for me. I could not retrace my steps because I did not know how to stop.

Night after night as I changed like a chameleon afraid to be recognized, I fooled myself. I wore wigs of different colors and skirts too short announcing my immorality. Underneath my skirts are no underwear. My blouses are so tight I can hardly breathe; My Lipsticks bright and sparkling in the dark as I call out loudly to men. My makeup makes me look older, hiding the innocence beneath. I call out to men unashamedly to come and enjoy my body.

Who will continue to love me but you? Recently, I heard someone preach about how you accept people just as they are. That I don’t need to change to come to you. The thought of change puts fear in me because this is how I have learned to survive. With my body so soiled, can you indeed come to live in me again or did you never leave me? If I come to you right now, will you turn your back on me and rather open your arms to your beautiful virgins who glorify you with their bodies? I pray you reach out and welcome me like the lost sheep that I am.

When I reached out for the bible hidden in my suitcase, I was searching for evidence of your love. I had shoved the bible beneath my clothes for fear of its reminder. To make nonsense of the sacrifice you made for me with the life of your dear son is to reject your mercy. Without your Mercy which I am better dead than alive.

The words in the bible have comforted me and given me the strength to come to you today. However, deep within me I knew you were waiting for me to come to you. The condemnations in the eyes of the preachers who have attempted to turn me from my ways always leave me more ashamed. Did these preachers expect me to follow them to church when their hands pointed disgustedly at me from afar? What safety can I find in a place where the sinner’s sin is always brought up? I do not want some boasting pastors to use me in their sermons claiming to have rescued me from the depths of hell. You alone have the power to rescue me.

You have protected me even in this dangerous profession; how can I explain how I stay healthy regardless? I have escaped Dreadful venereal diseases like HIV and Gonorrhea which have infected even those with few sexual encounters. It is a surprise that you still protect me in my sinful profession. The other day when some of my colleagues pondered how they had been spared from these infections, they claimed it was luck, but I know better. You know the deep-rooted issues in our heart’s that cause us to go astray. Thus, you do not withhold your mercy and grace from us.

Many find themselves here for reasons more tangible than mine. I do not have any excuse for what I have become. I have a hardworking mother who has supported me all this while to make my life comfortable. I may not be as rich as I wanted but I am definitely not a church mouse. Mum’s salary has been enough for both of us since she refused to marry when daddy died. Her dedication to my spiritual growth should have taught me better. Wanting more has almost succeeded in killing me. Set me free! Set me free from this self- inflicted pain.

My poor mother; I wonder how she found out about my little secret. I need to get out of this so I can see her smile again. The day she confronted me I couldn’t lie because I was confounded at her discovery. I will never forget the tears she shed as she knelt before me, begging me to stop. I know I should have changed that day but I was too far-gone. I was too ashamed to look her in the eyes. The disappointment was too much. Remember my mother’s tears as I do and help me turn my evil ways around.

When the pimp told me last week that I was nothing but a piece of trash worth less than a penny, I knew the time had come. The time had come for me to stand up and say No! The time had come to run back to you because at least I am worth more than that to you. The time had come for me to cut off all reminders of the one dime human being I had become. The time had come to wipe the tears from my mother’s eyes; she had not ceased praying to recue me out of the hands of the evil one. The time had come!

Oh, how bold I was to look him squarely in the face as I rose elegantly to my full 6feet height. I know you gave me courage because suddenly all my fear was gone. The look of shock and fear in his eyes made me realize I was worth more than he made me feel. I wonder where the words came from as they tumbled down my lips. Where did I get the strength to slap his face? “I may be worthless to you but I was so important to the one who created me that he sent his only begotten son to die that I may live; to turn this penny to a jewel so refined that you cannot identify her again”. The way he paled before me as I uttered those words made me know I had destroyed his defenses. What a relief I felt as I walked away; it was over. Just like that!

I was setting myself free. I had made him more money than his other prostitutes had but he had used me to his advantage sensing my insatiable need for material possessions. He thought I had nowhere to turn. He did not know that I had a God I who had been waiting for me to turn to him; One who was ready to carry the heavy burden I had placed on my own shoulders. A burden I gladly lay down at your feet. Make me your jewel oh lord, your word stays true. Who can wipe away my sins and set me free? Only you! Who can cause a new beginning to come out of an ugly past? Only you! Past, yes past, I am determined not to turn back to that path that leads to death. If you will not condemn me with my past, I don’t care about what anyone else says.

I put behind me a world I ignorantly entered, lured by the pleasures of life. I am returning to you realizing there is nothing better out there beyond the borders of your love. No matter what people say about me, it is better to enter your kingdom with a tarnished reputation than to miss heaven. Reading the bible like a thirsty drunk calms my spirit and makes me surer of one thing. It is a lie that you will not accept me as I am. It is for people like me that you sent your son. Like Paul, you will use me to confound those who thought it was over for me. I will no longer bow down my head in shame. You have already carried my shame on the cross!

I am no more Amanda the prostitute; I am Amanda the worthless vessel in transition to becoming a vessel of honor. Amanda the apple of your eye; that is what the word says you call your children. Come back into my heart Jesus and drive away all that is not worthy of your holy temple. Come back and take your place where I have placed others above you. Come and be seated in the comfort of my heart where you can heal all that is wrong within me for I am coming home again. Like the prodigal son, I have no more fears. You will give me your oil of gladness in your presence where there is fullness of joy. I am coming home to you right here where you never left me even though I left you a hundred times. I am back to my first love. I am here to stay!

I will no more look behind my shoulder only to see my own shadow. No more looking in the mirror to see a caricature looking at me dressed in ridiculous seductive clothing. No more ties with those who tied me down. No more believing in lies about your love for me; your word is my truth! If anyone recognizes the innocence beneath the decorated caricature, let the one pesewa coin shine as the jewel you will turn me into. I am ready to shine both day and night.

I come to you just as I am without fear of rejection. Back to the place of your security I come, where I belong. I am here to stay!

Amen.

 

 RELATED BIBLE VERSE

Psalm 32: 1-6

1          Oh, what joy for those whose rebellion is forgiven, whose sin is put out of sight!

2          Yes, what joy for those whose record the LORD has cleared of sin, whose lives are lived in complete honesty!

3          When I refused to confess my sin, I was weak and miserable, and I groaned all day long.

4  Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.

5          _ Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide them.

I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the LORD.” And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.

6          Therefore, let all the godly confess their rebellion to you while there is time,

that they may not drown in the floodwaters of judgment.

 

QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION

  1. Do you believe God is capable of forgiving Amanda for the sin of prostitution?
  2. Why was the psalmist weak and miserable when he refused to confess his sin?
  3. How did Amanda’s realization that God would not reject her despite her promiscuity set her free from bondage?
  4. When Amanda realized how important she was for God to send his only begotten son to die for her, how did she value herself?
  5. Do you know anyone who refuses to accept Jesus Christ because they feel unworthy and sinful?
  6. How will you encourage them or yourself to know that He came for the sinful and not the righteous?
UNANSWERED PRAYER FOR A HUSBAND

UNANSWERED PRAYER FOR A HUSBAND

NB: This story is purely fictional and a result of my active imaginations. It is unrelated to any person dead or alive; any such resemblance is purely coincidental.

At the age of 36, God-fearing Judith is still single and a virgin. She has been fasting and praying to God endlessly to bring her a man to call her own. Judith misses no opportunity to go to church, attend deliverance and prophetic services all in an attempt to receive God’s blessings. Many derogatory comments are passed at her back even from loved ones she least expected. It is presumed that she is unable to marry because she s choosy and snobbish. However, it is far from the truth. No serious God-fearing man had come her way yet. This bothers her so much that she approaches the Lord in prayer to come to her aid and right her wrong. She petitions God once again leaving the decision to him.

Daddy Lord,

If you will do what you will do, then why does your word tell me to pray? Do you just want to hear the words that come out of my mouth as evidence that I am still on your side? Why have you not answered my prayer when I have persisted without fail? Your word tells me that if I have faith as small as a mustard seed, I will move mountains. My faith may be small, but it is bigger than a mustard seed. So why is this mountain still in front of me? Your words say it is not good for man to be alone. So why does this goodness elude me if you are my God? Why am I alone with no man to call my own?

At the age of 36 what other form of prayer do you seek from me so I can see results? Teach me lord, I have gone through your Holy Book and prayed in all the possible ways. My prayers have ranged from Hanna’s unuttered words through David’s Psalms as well as Jabez’s prayer. I have fasted and prayed as Jesus recommended for difficult situations. I have only ended up with a stomach ulcer, the physical evidence that I have done my part.  Despite this, I have not stopped praising you. I give you thanks in all things as a good Christian ought to.

Have I not brought my tithes and offerings before you, so you will open the floodgates of heaven and poor down your blessings on me? Have I not bound demons down here on earth until there was none left to bind? Have I not brought others who share the same grief together in one accord to meet your requirement, which says; when two of us agree on something, it will be done for us? Why is my situation the same? What am I doing wrong or not doing right? All of those I prayed with are married but me.

If you are the merciful father whose anger lasts for a moment, then I know that my sins are not the issue here. Is it too much to ask that you give me a good man to call my own? What is the use of all this beauty you have endowed me with, if I am only admired but not claimed? Sometimes I wonder if I was foolish to have kept my virginity. Even my younger siblings know the pleasures on the matrimonial bed simply because they are married. If I experience the same, you will say I have fornicated. Why then will you not give me the opportunity to legally enjoy what you created? After all Paul once said it is better to marry than to burn with passion. I am burning with passion but who will hold me?

Your word stopped me when I wanted a baby for myself to call my own. If marriage is not your wish for me, at least let me have my own baby. If I do this, will I be justified? You will certainly accuse me of sexual immorality. At times, I wonder if it was a mistake to ask you into my heart. If you did not live in me, I would have had the courage to treat my body as I wanted. I would have made decisions that suited me without a pang of guilt.

If I knew prayer was so powerful, I would not have prayed to you to send away all men who would come into my life to hurt me until I met the man you created for me. Since that prayer, no one has come my way to make me feel like a woman. Please hasten to bring my man because the wait is now unbearable.

Are you afraid that the love I have for you will belong to another? Who can love a mortal and an immortal man in the same vain? No one can take your place in my heart. You are my God and true love. You are my first love.

The sermon I was listening to the other day spoke about how your answer to prayer is Yes, No or Wait. At first I thought telling me to wait was better than an outright No. I know better now, waiting upon you is the greatest cross one can carry. How I admire Abraham who waited until your promise came to pass. I wonder the feeling Elizabeth had when her baby jumped in her womb. I wish I had their patience! I know the fruits of the spirit include longsuffering but to wait upon you like this knowing your will, will prevail regardless of my plans is unbearable. You should have put in me a desire to live without a man. Why do you not take away my desire to be with a man since this desire is unfulfilled?

The prophecies and dreams regarding my marriage are so many yet none has come to pass. Other dreams and prophecies in other areas of my life have materialized but my marriage. How will I have the strength to wait upon you?

Society has placed a negative tag on me simply because I am single at my age. I was listening to a radio show the other day when one man spoke intensely about how successful women were so choosy and unwilling to settle down. Do you remember how I shook my head and laughed without mirth? What is there to choose from, when there is nothing to choose at all? Why should I not strive for success when there is nothing to tie me down? I would rather pursue my dreams because no man pursues me.

I wish society could be truthful and spare me the agony. Why rush into marriage and rush out of it? How I wish our mothers’ would be truthful like Aunty Dora. She envied my patience and my resolve to settle for nothing but your best for me. When will our Mothers’ reveal how they suffer in their marriages instead of pushing us into the same situation? If they will tell us the truth, perhaps we will have more patience, waiting on you.

Nothing frustrates me more when I hear that it is because I have been married in the spirit that I find no one here on earth to call my own. If this is the case then what did all my prayers and fasting accomplish? What were the deliverances I went through worth when my body became so weak I could hardly stand on my feet? What did the bottles of anointing oil that could have done wonders in the kitchen accomplish on my head? What was the use of the many anointed hands that placed on me?

Where can I find you, God? Clearly, you need to answer me. Are my enemies stronger than you are or does your will no longer matter to man? If a Christian woman is not married, is it because she is spiritually married? If she is barren, is it because she has spiritual babies? We need to know the truth. The bondage for which you sent your son to set us free, continues to entangle us drawing us further back into the darkness. Is your will no longer a priority?  If a Christian has waited upon you while the answer to her prayer is still pending, what can she do? How many more witches can I kill? How many more demons can I bind; I am only human.

The church has become even more unbearable for me for even there, there is no respite. People ask me when I will marry as if their happiness depends on my marriage. Do they forget that I am not God? That I do not have the answers? I have run out of polite answers to these questions and may resort to sarcastic replies if you do not keep me in check. It beats my mind that even in church the most foolish married person is sometimes regarded above the unmarried one who may be wiser. Singles have been disqualified from certain position simple because of their status regardless of their commitment to you. Help us lord or we may flee into the world.

I need to see you lift me up before my enemies. My victory will not be worth celebrating if all my enemies die. Who will see my victory? Many women have turned to other gods who quickly come to their aid. Others have stopped following you because this long suffering is long indeed. Hold on to me lord that I may not give up. Wipe the tears from my eyes and put a new song in my heart. Bless me with a good marriage for you alone bless man and add no sorrows to it. You know what is good for me and can see behind the veil covering the soul.

I have heard that those who have turned away from you get the best in life. Is this true; are your children not supposed to be the victors in this world? If you were able to differentiate between the children of Egypt and those of Israel when you sent the plaques, then I beg to differ in this view. You know your own and I am yours. Let not my worship be in vain. Open my eyes that I may see beyond and appreciate how you have protected me all this while.

The irony of the situation is that those who have strayed from you to indulge in fornication see it in their place to counsel me. They caution that you will not send a man to me from heaven. They say that I should go out there and get a man because I have all it takes. Isn’t it funny? When my colleague told me the other day to go after men since my clock was ticking, I kept quiet and listened. It was interesting because she seemed so knowledgeable about how to grab and keep a man. It was funny to me because she has been in a sexual relationship for ten years though she is not married.

Her wedding day never comes though she says it will. Does this qualify her to advice me? I don’t claim righteousness before you because you know my weakness. However, it is sad that those who ignore your laws turn around to counsel your children who patiently wait for you.

And then there is my friend Erica, jumping from men to men in her quest to find the best man. To her, God will not find a husband for you. It is sad when I see her cheapen herself despite the fact that she is a child of God. She claims she can change them and marry them but where has that left her? All the dirty clothes she washed and food she cooked for the men did not pay off. Her body has been used to satisfy their lust, yet she claims I need a man. Hmmm, I do not blame her for this wait is not easy.

Give your daughters’ the strength to wait and the ability to trust you for your word caution us not to lean on our own understanding. I wonder what would have happened if I did not heed your word. I may have ended up a second wife or agreed to marry to Cephas even though I knew he did not believe in you. I am grateful that you have kept me from desperation and guided me with your word lest I fall.

Help me as I prepare for the day when you will lay a table before me in the presence of my enemies. They think you have forsaken your children; please vindicate me. When my children jump around my house singing praises to you one day, let all those who said that it would be impossible to have children at my age marvel at your handiwork. Teach them that in the school of faith, science is disgraced. For who established the times but you. And who is wiser than you to question your ways and motives?

Have mercy on us God, for we are only humans. You alone know what is good for me though at times I feel that I know best. If Elizabeth knew that she had to be barren so John the Baptist could usher  Jesus into the world, she would not have unduly worried.

Help me understand your ways and not mine. Reveal a fraction of your mind to me and my heart will be steadfast, trusting in you. Let me see what you see and not what I want to see. Your word says your ways are not my ways nor your thoughts my thoughts. However, my mortal mind fails to comprehend this at times until your words steer me toward the truth. The day I know everything, you do and why, you will cease to be my God for my wisdom is lesser than a strand of your golden hair.

Let me live each day as a gift from you, enjoying the blessings you have so far granted unto me. You are a God of beauty who lets all things work together for good for all those who love you. Let my love for you grow to the point where I too may enjoy these promises of yours for even your name submits to your word.

Let me be the testimony of my time for all to know that you are the same God, yesterday today and forever more. I concur that whether it tarries, it shall come to pass. And even if Tomorrow never comes, let me be like Job who said that even though slays him, he will worship him. In Jesus name, I lay down my petition, until I knock at your door again. With unending love as always, it is Judith. Amen

 

RELATED BIBLE VERSES

Isaiah 40:31   but they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.

Psalms 27:13-14   I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living! Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD!

Psalms 37:34  Wait for the LORD and keep his way, and he will exalt you to inherit the land; you will look on when the wicked are cut off.

Proverbs 3:5-6  Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

Lamentations 3:25   The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.

Micah 7:7   But as for me, I will look to the LORD; I will wait for the God of my salvation; my God will hear me.

 

QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION

How does society force singles to enter into bad marriages?

Like Judith, do you agree that waiting for our heart’s desire can be the most difficult thing for a practicing Christian?

Do you agree that God knows best and makes all things beautiful in his time and not our time?

How can we remain faithful to God when our prayers have not yet been answered?

How does the way other Christians react to single adults worsen their plight?

 

 

 

THE THIEF CALLED BREAST CANCER

THE THIEF CALLED BREAST CANCER

NB: This story is purely fictional and a result of my active imaginations. It is unrelated to any person dead or alive; any such resemblance is purely coincidental.

Many women are dealt different blows of life from different angles, sometimes tragic and even deadly. Little did Monica know at the age of 26, she too would taste life’s bitter pill. She had suffered a lump in one of her breasts, which had become cancerous when detected. Unfortunately, her breast was removed to prevent the cancer from spreading to the rest of her body. She had always cherished her breasts since it was the most beautiful part of her body. As a child, she had fantasized about feeding her children as she played mummy. Thus, she was shattered after the operation when she beheld her bare chest in the mirror. Two weeks after the surgery, she deals with the mishap the only way she has knew how. Her father in heaven will have to hear what she thinks of this and what this experience has told her about him.

Dear lord,
If I am dear to you like you are to me, then you have an ironic way of showing it. If I earned your displeasure by showing off my cleavage, perhaps you should have dealt with me less harshly as your word attests to your mercy. If I knew, the time would come where I would have nothing to show above my chest, I would have saved many memories for a time like this. How do you see me now? The weight that graced my chest no longer tells of my identity. How will my Adam one day see me when he realizes his eve is incomplete? Will he still love me like you do and look past my chest to the love lying within, or will he turn around in disgust unsatisfied one lovely dove is gone?

Will what I have left, have the ability to satisfy the thirst of the three lovely kids I hope to have one day? And if you give me twins, who will have to sacrifice in suckling mummy’s breast first? Will what I have left be enough? How beautiful it is, to see a baby suckle his mother’s breast. How beautiful it is to me to see a husband rest his head on his wife’s bosom and like a baby, never wanted to leave its comfort. Oh, how beautiful it is to stand in the mirror in admiration of what you graciously endowed me. Were all those thoughts in vain unknowing one day soon, those fantasies will elude me?

How childhood might have laughed at me when I put the tiny insect on my nipple at age 13, with the ridiculous belief it would grow my bosom. When my friends Sandra and Victoria did this day after day, anticipating bigger breasts, it seemed to work with our vivid imagination. Little did we know those little insects stolen from the sand were needless in such circumstances. If having breasts, as a woman was not important, then why did we crave to have the same thing we saw on our mothers’ and sisters’ chests at that tender age? Why did we hope to skip childhood to adolescence? Is it not because you had put in us that innate desire? You are my father and I feel no shame baring my soul to you, for nothing I think, say or do has ever shocked you or will ever do.

I feel I have become a half woman who has no evidence of her identity. For what separates me from a man if we both have a flat chests? How will the embrace of my husband be when he feels no warmth and tenderness? Will I find one who loves me as you do? When the Doctor broke the news to me that I had a cancerous lump in my breast, oh how I prayed. How I prayed like Jesus did when he cried out to you to take away this cup, but unlike him, I never had the courage to ask for your will to prevail. So why did you not heal me? Why did you not command the traitorous lump which threatened to steal the life of your daughter, disappear into the depths of hell where it came from?

Did you not say in your word I am the apple of your eye and that you hold me in the palm of your hands? So how did harm come my way when I lay in God’s own palm? Have you not exalted your word about your name? Are you not the God who does what you will do? If so, does this mean the good plans you claim to have for me right from my mother’s womb were instead plans of evil, meant to harm me? The mere thought of this breaks my heart into a million pieces, for deep down I know the yards of old cannot measure your love. The wisest man who ever lived  cannot describe your love for me.

I know removing my left breast saved my life preventing the cancer from spreading to other parts of my body. I look forward to the reason you kept me alive. I am left with the right one, a tribute of your wisdom to why you created them in a pair. So why do I feel I have lost my most prized possession? I know the unbearable pain is gone away with it, but you alone know what it left behind. A low self-esteem and a torture only you who permeates my mind can fathom. Even though the padded bra does its best to play its role, the mirror in my room reminds me of the truth. I have become incomplete!

When I was skeptical the first day in boarding school about bathing naked, the innocent girly comments about my lovely breasts made me so happy. Even though I was shy, the compliments made me confident in my womanhood. At least if my face was not so beautiful, something of mine was. This may sound silly, but when my female colleagues voted my breasts as the most beautiful in secondary school, my joy knew no bounds. It was all a game but it made me happy. I couldn’t wait to show them to my husband on our honeymoon. You know this God, for I have not kept this fantasy from you. Between us, there are no secrets.

Am I holding on to vanity or do you feel my pain? Thank you for speaking to my spirit the other day as I looked into the mirror. When you told me I was still more beautiful to you, that the beauty within me covers my scars from your sight, oh how my heart soared. However, down here on earth where man does not think as you do, please help me survive. Help me survive with what you have graciously left me. Help me survive with the life you spared. Oh God, Help me! The tears my family and dearest friends shed upon realizing I may have lost my life make me realize it was worth the sacrifice for I am thankful you have given me such loved ones. You have blessed me with people who can look at me through your eyes and love me unceasingly.

The mere fact that my younger sister Tracy naively thought she could donate her own breast to make me happy taught me a great lesson. We hold on to what we can easily let go. There is nothing we can live without unless you whose name is Jehovah decide to take away the breath you have given to us. The only thing and the only one I cannot leave without, is you. My God, my Father and my friend! It is interesting how we love you when everything goes well for us and turn our back on you, when it happens otherwise. Oh, now I cherish Jesus the more for those of us who follow him have a great task ahead.

The crown of thorns that pierced his head would have been enough for me to say bye to you. I would have thrown the sword that pierced his side at you, had that been me. The nails that passed through his hands and feet would never have earned my forgiveness as he did forgive even those who persecuted him. The spit on his face alone would have doubled my steps back to the path of sin and the denial from his best friend would have made me reject you before the multitude. Now you know how I felt when the nurse whispered to her colleague these things happen to bad girls who allow men to manhandle their breasts.

Why do people cut you down into pieces when you are already in shreds and speak of what they know nothing about? Why do people presume the worse of an innocent victim who is already suffering? Does she know my breasts have not yet experienced the palms or lips of any man? Did she know her words made me feel worse than the physical pain I was already going through? Did she know her judgment of me could take away your mercy from her? And what about her colleague, how I wish she had defended me in speech, instead of the shocked look she displayed on her face at that utterance. I was too weak to speak out and so tongue-tied no words would have come out, had I tried.

Maybe that is what she had heard, refusing to set aside her ignorance to find out the truth. How interesting that she would cut her fellow woman to pieces, forgetting the same faith may await her one-day or a loved one so dear. Why do people forget it is a small world where no one can hide from life’s blows? Why do people feel a tragedy is so far away from them even when it has happened to a neighbor nearby? Perhaps, one day she would understand and remember the look in my eyes as I stared unblinkingly at her, as she administered the anesthetics in preparation for my moment of doom. Maybe she thought I couldn’t hear her, since she had whispered those hurtful words. Maybe she thought it was an innocent comment but the sarcasm in her voice took out its innocence. Someday she may understand misfortune does not only visit the sinful.

One thing I ask of you Lord; do not let your children be subject to the mercy of man. When I look back to the entire procedure, I realize you never left my side for a single moment. I could see you in the eyes of my loved ones and feel you in the touch of the doctor whose sincerity vibrated from within her, making me know we had the same greater being living in us. Oh, what a joy it is, to find a man who loves the lord, a man who loves his neighbor as himself and seeks to please you. It is true a lot has changed these days, in contrast to women who suffered at a time when there was no solution. I can say at least I am grateful misfortune has visited me at a time, when there is hope.

When I visited the breast cancer women’s club, I was astonished. The stories they shared moved me to tears and laughter at the same time. Hope and encouragement entered my heart as I realized I was not alone. Life must go on, with or without what I have lost. I am grateful at least in some months down the line if I decide to have my next surgery, I would have a new bosom forgetting the cold I feel there now. It doesn’t matter it will not be real, for I know reality is believing in something to be, even if it is not. I have not made the decision yet but I know even if I do, the tongues of those who do not know the reality of my condition will continue to wag. Maybe this time they will call me promiscuous, just maybe… Nevertheless, when the time comes, my head will no more hang low. Your glory will lift my head and my tongue loosened to your praise.

I will make my voice heard and glory in your salvation that all may know my God spared my life from sudden death. Oh, how I love you lord for you have spared my life. How I praise you God, for you have dealt kindly with me. I will proclaim of your goodness and mercy all the days of my life. Even at times when my flesh takes charge and my tongue speaks of how my God did not take away my cup of sorrow; please remember I am but human. A woman whose daily struggle is to live a life pleasing to you. For life, here on earth is a daily struggle, a continued race and a long journey. A journey attempted and failed is better than one never attempted. A Christian walk without trials cannot boast of standing the test of true discipleship. Therefore, help me father for I know not the next cross I may have to carry. But this I know; with you by my side I can face the world.

If the world thrown at me is that of sorrow, make it joyful for me. If it is a world without peace, let it be peaceful for me because in my own world where you dwell, I shall be victorious. Let everyone who has gone through this ordeal but does not know you come to know you. For though in my world you belong to me alone, am willing to share your love with others who need you more. I wipe away my tears and look beyond my scars where I can see what you alone can see. Daddy’s little Girl, Monica. I am the apple of your eye, unchanging in your sight and still beautiful to you. Thank you for sparing my life. Amen.

 

RELATED BIBLE VERSES

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

Jeremiah 30:17
For I will restore health to you, and your wounds I will heal, declares the Lord, because they have called you an outcast: ‘It is Zion, for whom no one cares!’

Isaiah 53:4
Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted.

Joshua 1:9
Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

 

QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION

How can we support suffering people without  being judgmental?

Like Monica, do you agree that even the most intimate details of our life can be discussed with God in prayer?

How can we deal with sudden devastating events in our lives?

How does the way Christians react to suffering in their lives minister to unbelievers?

I SALUTE YOU!

I SALUTE YOU!

I SALUTE YOU!

When I was only a girl, I thought I knew it all.

Your decisions sounded foolish, I didn’t understand.

I thought you were dumb; I didn’t want to be like you.

I thought you were weak, your choices depicted weakness.

I thought I was wiser than the one who lived before me.

Oh how foolish I was! How unwise!

                                                             Now I know, in weakness there is strength,

Where I scorned you, now I salute you!


For the woman who raised more than ten children, I salute you.

The one I have is a handful.

For the woman who lost her life laboring for me, I salute you.

But for me, you would be here.

For the woman who was deformed because of me, I salute you.

But for me, your beauty would radiate.

For the woman who remained sane, I salute you.

My little pains make me insane!


For the woman who stayed in marriage despite the challenges, I salute you.

I thought you had nowhere to go, now I know you couldn’t let go.

For the woman who quit her job for me, I salute you.

I thought you lacked ambition.

For the woman who sold her body to feed me, I salute you.

Now I bear with you, though i do not condone.

For the woman who was both mother and father, I salute you

Where did you find the strength?


For the woman who forgave me, I salute you.

Oh, how unforgiven i would  have been.

For the woman who stayed awake for me, I salute you.

Oh, how sweet your sleep would have been.

For the woman who covered my shame, I salute you.

Oh, how honorable you would have been!

For the woman who lied for me, I salute you.

Oh, how truthful you would have been!


For the woman whose clothes were tattered, I salute you.

Oh, how gorgeous you would have looked.

For the woman who advised me, I salute you.

Oh, how foolish I would have been.

For the woman who shared her shame, I salute you.

Oh, how shameful I would have been.

For the woman who reproved me, I salute you.

Oh, how lost I would have been!


For the woman who set a good example; I salute you

Oh, how else would i have known.

For the woman who believed in me, I salute you.

Oh, how insecure i would have been.

For woman who had me despite the pain, I salute you

Oh, how painless it would have been.

For the woman who sacrificed her dreams, I salute you.

Oh, how successful you would have been!


For the woman who protected me, I salute you.

Oh, how well you hid your fears.

For the woman who sheltered me, I salute you.

Oh, how warm you would have felt.

For the woman who cleaned me up, I salute you.

Oh, how wretched I would have been.

For the woman who spoke for me, I salute you.

Oh, how defenseless I would have been!


For the woman who encouraged me, I salute you.

Oh, how timid I would have been.

For the woman who prayed for me, I salute you.

Oh, where would I have been?

For the woman who swallowed her pride, I salute you.

Oh, how prideful i would  have been.

For the woman who shared her mistakes, I salute you.

Oh, how would I have learnt?

I salute you! I salute you! I salute you!

INTIMATE MOMENTS WITH MY FATHER

INTIMATE MOMENTS WITH MY FATHER

Few years ago, i put pen to paper as i began to ponder the imperfections of christian women seen by others as perfect. I wondered the weight of grief and despair when they made mistakes considered morally unacceptable and remained silent for fear of condemnation. Who does the woman tagged by society as “virtuous” turn to when she finds herself in the middle of an adulterous affair? When the Sunday school teacher becomes pregnant out of wedlock, who does she turn to? What becomes of the choir leader who cannot come out of the sin of fornication? Who do these women turn to when the church frowns on such conduct? It is only our father in heaven who listens and does not tell, he is that safe place where shocking confessions are uttered without condemnation. I delve into the lives of different christian women confronted with different issues of life as they all come to a place of intimate conversations in prayer. Though targeted at christian women, other women who do not mind that  I come from a Christian  perspective are also welcome.

I will love to hear from women who made mistakes at a point in their christian walk and for fear of condemnation  suffered in silence.

Men who can relate to these issues are also encouraged to visit this blog.