Get back on your knees

Many of us have looked back to the beginning of this year and are not yet where we want to be; we are still waiting on some answers to prayers, we are hoping things will get better. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

Now, this is what I would like to do ‘Get back to the place of prayer’. This is a place where most of us have become lazy. We want things to change but can’t get on our knees to make it happen. Everything in life is now about rush; time to wake up quickly, get to work, get up to do our chores, attend to the kids, attend to our jobs, get back home, too tired and exhausted, go to sleep and then wake up the next morning and continue in this pattern. I am guilty of this too. Folks, laziness in the place of prayer destroy the effectiveness of one’s life. When you stop praying or don’t pray, you are choking your spiritual life. People who do not pray are not are clueless of their journey in life, frustrated and disconcerted. The Bible says, devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. Colossians 4:2. Are you devoted to prayer?

When you don’t pray, you will be confused. This is when you have no idea what turn to take; this is when fear is overwhelming in your life at every storm. But when you pray, you are stronger. A constant communication with God brings clarity and peace to our lives. When the storm comes, you know God is in control, and will not be shaken by it. You will have direction in your life. You will know the Father is on your side; you’ll have an assurance of his favour and mercy in your life. You will not be ignorant of the devices of the enemy; you will be ten steps ahead of them and not be caught by surprise.

You want a change in your life; you have to get back on your knees. You want to be a testifier; you have to start praying. When you inhale prayer, you will exhale praises. Prayer is the key to growth. It’s the key to increase, the key to breakthrough, and success.

Now, I’m not talking about the minute’s prayer we do every morning; you know, the one that has become routine rather than a communication with the father. We rush into prayer and rush out of prayer. Folks, it’s time to get back to basic; it’s time to stay right there in the presence of God to hear him speak to us after we have spoken to him. Saying ‘amen’ to prayers offered by friends, through the media and everyone is good, but getting on your knees right in the presence of God is the best.

Prayer brings families together, prayer brings couples together, and it brings the children together. Prayer is a covering of protection over your household. Don’t lose your place of prayer; don’t get too busy to seek the face of God. Don’t be in a rush into the presence of God. Prayer loses bondage and breaks shackles. Prayer delivers those oppressed and heals the broken hearted. Prayer hears the voice of the Lord in the midst of trials of life. Prayer brings peace and joy into our lives. Prayer is the key Folks. David understood the power of prayer. He said in Psalm 18:6, ‘In my distress, I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears’.

If you are going through any difficult time today, it is time to pray. Trials and disappointment can make you sad, and make life miserable for you, but prayer, talking to the father about it can bring a change into your life. He will clothe you with his love, mercy, beauty, peace, joy and bring light into your life.

I have to stress that prayer isn’t just made on your knees. Prayer is a continuous communication with the father all through the day. When you wake up in the morning, in the shower, having breakfast, on your way out, on the motorway, in the lift, you get the gist? It is a constant talking with God. It is a lifestyle that you must not do without.

Do you know that the enemy is scared when you get to pray? They are so frightened and would do everything to make it not happen. They know when you pray, the heavens are attentive to your words; they know when you speak to your father who is the Almighty, He answers. They are scared because they know the power of prayer, and so will keep you far away from it. You wake up late in the morning and can’t be bothered to pray because you are late for work. Guess what, the enemies are laughing because they got what they wanted. Prayer is discipline; it has to become your way of life, a part of you. Pray when you are tired from a hard day at work, pray when you are most stressed, pray when the trials are tough and hard on you; pray even when you don’t feel like praying. Pray when you are at peace when you are happy; pray at all times. Let’s get back to the altar of prayer. Psalm 145:18 says, the Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. Do you want the Lord near to you? Call on him in truth.

 

 

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Insight 4u – His Reputation

Who is your husband?

You are his helper, so don’t turn him to a door mat; you have not only trampled on him but allowed others do the same – especially with your words. Some have resentment towards their husbands- maybe something they did in the past or doing to them, so they lash out their anger by speaking badly about them in public. Words are powerful, be careful what you say to that man. A virtuous woman has a husband who is respected. ‘He is known in the gates, when he sits amongst elders of the land’. – Proverbs 31:23.

Build His Reputation. You know those things you can do to ruin your husband’s reputation, right? (like talking bad about him behind his back or acting like you expect him to be thoughtless or lazy) Well, there are things that you can also do to build his reputation. How you act toward him says a lot to others. What you say about him in his presence and behind him, what you expect of him also speaks loudly.

Most men prefer to be admired to being loved. If you doubt this tell your husband that you love him and study his reaction. Then after prayerful consideration, think of something you admire about him. Say to him, ‘There is something about you that I truly admire’. Watch his attentiveness. You will be amazed at how powerful words of admiration are to your husband. Would you consider saying to your husband tonight, ‘There is something about you I truly admire’. Then share it with him. Lay your discomfort aside. Swallow your pride if you need to. Ask God for a spirit of humility and sincerity. Then step out in faith and tell your husband you admire him. You can do it! And God will bless you in your efforts. (From the book The Politically Incorrect Wife by Nancy Cobb and Connie Grigsby)

If you find it hard to come up with ways to encourage your husband, saying thanks is a great place to start. If things are rocky just now and you don’t feel particularly thankful for your husband (believe me, this happens!), start small.

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Let’s talk about the ‘S’ WORD- Sex in Marriage!

Chapter one

 

It was the early hours of the day. Shannon Rivers couldn’t help but wonder the mystery going on behind her seat. She’d had to restrain herself from turning her back to look at the old couple giggling and making little love conversation behind her in the car. Margaret and David Meyers are the almost sixty years of old foster parents of her husband Matt.

 

Matthew Rivers was only ten years of age when he was given into their care, after moving from different foster home to the next, he finally found his ground. He lived with them until he was eighteen, and even after that, he became more like a son to them and would always be welcome to their home. Matt told his wife that those two couples meant the world to him, and he would do anything just to make them happy. He said they never gave up on him, and took care of him like a son they never heard; although they did never had a child of their own, but the couple took care of all their foster children like theirs. Apart from just looking after them; Matt would never forget how they led to the Lord; they gave him a precious gift of knowing Jesus Christ as his lover and Saviour, which he would forever be grateful for; they taught him the principles of living a godly life which guided him through every challenges he ever faced.

 

The couple would be celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary this weekend and had decided to travel to the Caribbean in Saint Lucia, North America to spend their glorious years together. Before this, Matt had asked his parent what they wanted for their anniversary, and he even suggested a party for them, but in turn they insisted they would like to spend that time away on a resort for a week, and wanted him and his wife to be part of it. Shannon and Matt had found this rather strange, as they expected the two to want to spend time alone together, but they had insisted it would be a perfect anniversary gift.

 

Shannon could still hear quiet giggles from the behind and noticed the smirk look on her husband’s face as he pretended to have his full attention on the road. Their flight from London Gatwick to St Lucia would take about nine hours which Shannon had dreaded all week; she hated the long hours stuck in the sky. However, Matt had begged her to support him in this decision so she decided to pack her things, at least, it would mean a bit of holiday for herself. They took their eight years old son to stay with her mother until they returned.

 

“Here we are,” Margaret announced from the back seat, all excited.

Matt pulled the car to the nearest car space, while they all came down.

“Are you sure the car would be alright here for a week?” David asked again for the third time since they started the journey.

Matt gently patted his back. “Yes it would; I already paid for the whole reservation, don’t you worry about it, dad.” He assured him.

“Here we go, here we go.” Margaret took Shannon by her shoulders and led her into the airport and left the men with their bags.

Matt couldn’t help but notice the forced smile on his wife’s face. He only wished she would at least appreciate their gesture and relax just for this weakened. He carried on with the bags and waited to give instruction to the attendant who had come for his car.

 

About an hour later, they had checked in and ready to board the plane. Just before they walked the long walk to the plane; David took them by the corner and said a short prayer. After that, he took his wife by the hand, with a board smile on their faces; they walked along with other passengers to board their plane. Shannon held her hand bag tightly and even used her other hand to support it, not that it was that heavy, but just an excuse not to be cosy with her husband.

 

 

Chapter Two

 

It’s been almost five hours into their journey; both Margaret and David had fallen asleep; Matt also falling in and out of sleep. Shannon sat there holding the third magazine she’d purchased from the Airport. She couldn’t believe how much she’d read through the all the pages even though she wasn’t a fan of reading. She inhaled deeply as the baby behind them started crying again; she could feel the frustration in the mother’s voice who had been trying to make the baby comfortable since their journey began but seems like her, the baby wasn’t too comfortable at being in the sky.

 

Shannon took a long look at her husband and felt her heart jarred. What would we do together for the whole of this weekend? She thought. She couldn’t remember the last time she spent time alone with him, not to talk of a romantic gateway; there was definitely nothing romantic between them for several years now and couldn’t think of what these few days of just being alone together would do to them. Her heart started to pound; she was scared this time alone might make them come to term of the failures in their marriage. For years now; anger, bitterness, and resentment have clouded their lives and both did nothing to change it, rather they both lived in a vale of ignorant and moved with the flow.

 

After the first two years of her marriage, Shannon became tired of the long talk and rituals; she felt Matt was beginning to ask for things and attention she couldn’t give to him. She felt like he had made her the source of his happiness, and each time things went wrong in his life, she was expected to play something like a ‘god’ or pacifier in their marriage. She did try to play that role for a while but when she wasn’t up to,  he felt neglected and made it a point of duty to remind her of the failure. This has led to a lot of resentment and anger in their marriage; then he would complain about their sex life which happened to be the major problem in their marriage. The bitterness and resentment clouded her heart from feeling any attraction to him, so sex or any intimacy was something she wasn’t up to.

 

This wasn’t how it all started; she used to be so much in love with him that she looked forward to spending time together every day, but something went wrong in their lives and both have neglected it for so long, that it has eaten away almost every good thing between of them.

 

*****

Five hours later, they have driven to their resort; St Lucia’s mountainous majesty; a small island. Built around a central mountain, where you can hike, bike and horseback ride across endlessly, winding country side, an incredible lush landscape that introduces you to multi-coloured flora and rich tropical Vista that permeate your sense with sights, sounds and scents. Shannon felt the fresh breeze all around her, and for the first time since their journey began, she felt this vacation might actually be good for her.

 

 

Chapter Three

 

The first two days were spent in between sleeping and enjoying the tour of the island. On the third day, Matt and David had gone to play Golf leaving the ladies on their own.

 

Margaret and Shannon settled under the canopy by the sea side with their glasses of mango juice enjoying the view. Shannon occasionally stole a glance at Margaret; she thought on how to satisfy her curiosity with the question probing her mind. She had been longing to know the secret to the couple’s relationship even after all these years; she was in between their old age, probably that’s why they are so much in love. But again, she felt they have been this way for a very long time since she’s known them. The closeness and affection between them is something to admire.

 

“Alright let it out.” Margaret’s Voice’s trailed through her.

Shannon straightened, as she was caught unaware staring at her.

Margaret smiled softly at her. “You have been staring at me for some time now, I know you have something to say, spell it out.” Her voice was more like a mother trying to get a child to speak, with her eyes driving straight through her.

“Are you sure?” Shannon said with a jeering smile on her face.

“Sure about what?”

“That you want me to ask?

“I think I am.” She winked at her.

“Alright, here it goes,” She inhaled deeply. “Are you and David still having sex?”

Margaret was taken aback at her question. She flashed an unpleasant look at her. “What!” She snapped.

Shannon immediately knew her question had been inappropriate.

“I am so sorry.” She apologised, covering her mouth in shame. “I am sorry, that was really inappropriate of me.”

 

Suddenly, Margaret busted into a spur of laughter.

 

Shannon was stunned. She looked around her to see if there was something that might have caused this reaction, but they were the only people by the sea side.

 

Margaret continued to laugh. “You need to see your face.” She pointed to Shannon.

Shannon still didn’t understand what was making her laugh.

“I mean when I snapped at you, and then your face changed to this look like, ‘this old woman is going to have a fist at me’ kind of face.” She wiped the tears away from her face.

 

Shannon felt relieved, knowing she wasn’t angry at her question. “I’m sorry about my question; really, it was very rude of me to have asked.” She apologised again. She straightened and sat forward.  “I mean, the way you both have been so cosy together, your hands are always on each other, every time!” She emphasised, her eyes lilted up. “At your age, I became curious, and couldn’t help but wanted to know, really?” She looked straight at her in astonishment.

 

Margaret smiled at her; she stared at her for a while and couldn’t help but wonder the thought in her heart. “Now, since we are talking the ‘sex’ issue here; it’s my turn to ask a question.” She smiled.

“Are you and our Matt still making love together?” She looked straight at her.

 

Shannon was gob-smacked. She had not been expecting that kind of question, even though she had been too forward to ask her first.  She looked away from her intense gaze.

“Alright, maybe I should answer your question first.” Margaret smiled solemnly. “Yes, we are still very much in love and having so much sex even at our age.” She giggled; her face turned red from blushing.

 

Shannon couldn’t help but show the stunned look on her face.

 

“Seeing the shock on your face tells me things are not all that ‘loving’ between you and Matt.”

 

“That’s not true.” She tried to deny it.

Margaret sighed; brushed away the strings of hair the wind blew across her face. “I have seen the way you both look at each other; it sure doesn’t look like two lovers.” She stood up and carefully pulled her chair to face her.

 

“You see Shannon when couples fall out of love with each other; you know the longing to stay in each other’s arm forever, the affection,” She clapped her hands together. “Then, they could merely be having sex just to fill their urges, but the love making is long gone.” She looked straight into her eyes.

 

“I have seen it on you dear, and trust me, I have been there.”

 

Shannon braced herself; although she felt Margaret was serious with her talk, part of her was not ready to discuss her sexual issues with anyone, especially not with her ‘foster mother-in-law’.

 

“There was a time in our lives,” Margaret slowly began. “We used to be so in love, full of passion and romance; suddenly, I began to notice he doesn’t care, he just changed in matters of weeks, going to months. It seemed like ages since we made love and all we did was fight about little things that we could easily have overlooked. Sometimes, we fight for days and couldn’t even remember what caused the fight.” She rested her back against the chair.

 

Shannon’s face was devoid of any expression as she was already tying herself up in knots trying to work out where this was going.

 

“I felt like the whole romance and infatuation was over and I started to want something new, in fact, someone else to fill the void in me. I mean, I started to get bored of David.” She took her face away from Shannon for a minute.

 

Shannon swallowed the hard lump in her throat. She couldn’t imagine the two ever getting bored of each other.

 

“My mind started to wander towards something new, different and exciting. The whole passion was down and no emotion towards him; I was struggling with my commitment to him, struggling with lustful thought and things a married woman should never think about.” She stopped to take a sip of her drink.

 

“Then, I joined a book club not too far from my house; I actually found out about it in the library and started to attend. I wanted something to keep my mind off these betraying emotions towards my husband. I mean, I am a Christian wife, and shouldn’t be found thinking of such. I tried so hard to keep myself busy with my writing and research on the new book I was writing, but nothing worked.

David, on the other hand, made it worst; he ignored me completely, and when I complained about his lack of affection and love towards me, he tells me I should grow up and stop complaining. He couldn’t understand how the issue of sex could be affecting our marriage. He said I wanted more sex and that was demonic. He felt I was almost possessed by some Jezebel spirit.” She chuckled.

 

Shannon felt this sounded a bit like her; she was the one shutting her husband out of her life and the more Margaret spoke, the more she felt some piercing in her heart.

 

“During those times, it was difficult for me to tell anyone, not even the women fellowship where we pray about our homes. I mean, how do I tell other women that I wanted more affection and sex from my husband but he shuts me out?” She inhaled deeply. “I didn’t want to sound like a whore or an unbeliever so I kept it to myself.” She took her hat from the table and placed it over her head to keep the sun away from her eyes.

 

“So this supposed book club became my solace.” She wiped her hands over her face. “There I meant a fellow writer like myself; Andrew. He was so passionate about writing and I found him interesting. We would sit and talk after every book club about so many things. Gradually, I started to find comfort in him; I looked forward to seeing him every time, and our book club couldn’t meet up to the demands in our hearts. “

 

Shannon was staring at her. Her face blank of any expression, and her heart filled with fear and anxiety. Even though things have not been going well in her marriage, she could never imagine herself cheating on her husband. It’s not something you keep in mind just in case one’s marriage doesn’t work.

 

“Then, I started an affair with Andrew.” She cupped her hands over her tiny body.

 

Shannon was stunned. She swallowed hard.

 

Margaret noticed her reaction which was well expected. “Yes I did dear, and that became the worst story of my life.” Her face filled with sadness. “At first, I felt regret at betraying David and defiling our marriage bed, but I allowed lust take the better part of me and continued in it.” She let out a soft sigh. “You know, there is a passage in Proverbs chapter five that says, ‘Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well. Should your springs overflow in the streets, your streams of water in the public squares?” her voice began to tremble. “Let them be yours alone, never to be shared with strangers. May your fountain be blessed, and may you rejoice in the wife of your youth. A loving doe, a graceful deer— may her breasts satisfy you always, may you ever be intoxicated with her love.” She stopped for a few seconds to pull herself together as the tears bunched in her eyes started to flow down her cheeks. She bowed her head in shame.

 

Shannon couldn’t stand to watch her in this distraught state. She felt she didn’t have to do this, so she gently placed her hands on her shoulder.

 

“You don’t have to tell me.” She spoke softly to her.

 

Margaret raised her head to look into her eyes. “I do my dear, I do.” She wiped the tears away. She stiffened and continued. “Well, my husband later found out about my affair. It broke his heart and broke our marriage.”

 

 

Shannon felt pain in her heart; she never heard of this from Matt before. She saw the sadness on her face even after all these years.

 

“I turned away from my husband and also from God. I couldn’t face looking at any of them. After my husband confronted me about the affair and I couldn’t deny it; I left home…, we were separated for almost two years.”

 

Shannon looked widely at her.

 

“Two years of our lives were destroyed.” She looked away from Shannon and wiped the tears in her eyes.

 

“I felt so unworthy of my husband, and couldn’t believe I had been the cause of our failed marriage. Even though we didn’t have children, I mean, that did not break us, but I destroyed our marriage just because I wanted more sex. I was so foolish!

 

“Two years later, David sought me out and asked me to come back home. He said he had forgiven me and wanted to spend the rest of his life with me.” She cupped her cheeks into her hands. “I was mystified. Why would he still want me after all these?” She stopped for a second.

 

“Well, to cut the story short, we came back together with a lot of forgiveness and talk to work on our marriage. We both rededicated our lives and marriage back to God.

 

Shannon rested her back against her seat as she listened to her.

 

“I know I caused the breakdown in our marriage, but it all started with the lack of sex and wanting more affection which my husband wasn’t giving. You see, in as much as God provided sex for us in marriage, the enemy also uses this against us. He would use your emotions, feelings, passion against you once he sees that it’s not properly guarded and the desire to give it out to someone else is there.” She looked straight at her.

“When either couple is depriving the other of sex in their marriage; it opens an avenue for the enemy to come in. when they fail to spend intimate time together, it causes damage in their marriage.”

 

Shannon swallowed the lump in her throat; her guilt cut through her.

 

Now, I’m not blaming my husband for what I did. No, far from it. I made a choice to defy my marriage; I made a choice to sleep with another man. That is all on me. But what if I had done things differently, maybe prayed about the situation in my marriage to God; talk about our sex issues with God.”

 

Shannon raised an eyebrow. She couldn’t imagine praying about Sex to God. She felt that must be an unholy prayer in the highest order.

 

Margaret noticed her retrain. “Now my dear, who better should we talk to when we have questions or issues in our marriage? Should God be an exception to that? The one who made sex and every other thing; shouldn’t He be the best to deal with troubles on the marriage bed?” she looked widely at her.

“Some people have the mistaken notion that God is anti-sex. In fact, passionate sex was God’s idea. He isn’t embarrassed by it. The entire book of Songs of Solomon is dedicated to celebrating pure sex in marriage. Part of the challenges Christians faces in a lust-filled world is remembering that neither sex nor sexuality is our enemy. Sex is not the problem —lust is the problem.”

 

Shannon had never thought of it like that. She had felt every sex issue should be in fact only to be discussed within oneself; not even openly between the couples involved. She had always felt some resistance on her part to talk about these private matters even with Matt, and each time he brought it up, she was the one who ended shutting him out. She inhaled deeply as she saw a clear light to these issues.

 

Margaret smiled softly. “Then, we began to pray about our lives together, talk about our sex life; understands what we both wanted and finding ways to meet and fulfil each other needs.” Her intense gaze was widely on Shannon.

 

Shannon inhaled deeply.

 

“Listen my dear; we must make a choice regarding sexual expression. We can either utilize it as a deviant, destructive power or we can harness its potential to keep love alive and vibrant in our marriages. In a marriage, sex is the spice that rescues our relationships from becoming mundane pursuits of chores. Adult life is filled with responsibilities. We have mortgages to pay, home to maintain, laundry to clean, cars to service, and so on. But none of us got married so we could load up on chores.” Margaret looked to see the reaction on her face.

 

“We got married out of hope. We got married because we believed there was some kind of magic between us. We got married because we believed we could have great sex together. A satisfying sex life can add dignity to all other pursuits of life. It is the thing to look forward to after a dull or miserable day at work.” She blushed.  “Sex is the moment of connection that creates a deep bond, even when sprinkled weeks or months apart. Sexual union adds an underlying deposit of strength that can help hold couples together when life threatens to pull them apart.[1]” She stopped for a moment to look at her; she knew her words were piercing hard through her heart and silently prayed God would complete the work he had started.

“Maybe it’s time to go to God and tell him those issues in your heart; a time to surrender everything to him and let him take over. A time to stop fighting and trying to find your way; rather, let God lead you into all truth, including your sex life.” She rested with a smile.

 

 

Chapter Four

 

Shannon had a great reflection on the discussion with Margaret. In fact, for the rest of the day, she had been so occupied with these thoughts. She realized she was guilty about a lot of things in the marriage and had been the major cause of every strife in their lives. She had been so bored of any form of sex in their marriage. In fact, there had been days when she punished her husband by withholding her body from him when he upset her.

 

Sleep was far from her eyes as she laid down pondering. She wondered was Matt thought of her; was he satisfied at the way things were in their lives? Has he given up on their marriage? Does he even love her? She could hear his slow breathing by the other side of the bed and knew he was still awake. Her heart was telling her to say something, at least, find out how he felt about these issues but her head was telling her it was a bad idea.

 

Before she could ponder on the argument between her head and her heart, she found herself speaking. “Matt.” She called out; just to be sure he was still awake.

“Yes.” He answered, more like a whisper.

Then, she inhaled deeply. “What happened to us?” She asked in a low voice.

“What!” Matt turned to face her.

She decided to sit up on the bed. “I mean, what went wrong between us; in fact, what exactly are we doing here?” She asked.

Matt chuckled. “I think you are the best person to answer that question.” His tone of voice was devoid of any emotion.

“What do you mean?” she demanded.

“Exactly what I was about to ask.” He answered. “I mean, you are the one here asking the question; the same person who has made ridiculous rules in our home, mostly regarding our sex lives. You should be in a better position to answer these questions.” He too sat up against the head board.

 

Shannon would feel an erupt anger rising in her. “Why do you always have to blame me each time we start a discussion; more like you despise me enough to throw things at my face?” Her jaw tightened in disgust.

“Me? Despise you?” he flashed an angry look at her and stood up from the bed. “Seriously, I’m not sure of what you are doing now or what you are even getting at?”

 

“Look at us.” She lashed out as all the emotion she had been struggling with since the conversation with Margaret that afternoon started to find its way out. “We have nothing; we behave like absolute strangers and none of us is willing to do something about it, you are not even concerned enough to make a change.” Dread was binding itself tighter and tighter around her heart.

 

“You were the one who made a change in our marriage.” He stood to face her. “You were the one who deprived me of something that I should be given freely.”

 

“Does everything have to be about sex!” her temper was flaring out of control. “Hey Shannon, why don’t we have enough sex; hey, you are not satisfying me enough.” She mimicked. “God! You think you own me or something; you forget that I also have need to be filled; I want to be loved, appreciated and chased after. I want you to want me, not just for sex, but for me!” she cried out.

 

Matt was so angry, but with a supreme effort, he managed to keep his voice to a virulent hiss. “What!” he was stunned.

 

“When you look at me, tell me what you see?” She stared at him and fought the surging dread inside her. “You stopped telling me how much you loved me or how much I mean to you. You stopped telling me I was beautiful. You stopped looking at my body like I mean something to you.” She moved away from him. “I feel so unattractive, so insecure. I look at my body every day and wonder if you still found something attractive to you, if you still wanted me, not just to fulfil your urges.” Her lips were pale, her hands shaking.

 

Matt stood there staring at her in confusion; he never for once knew she felt this way, nonetheless, he couldn’t see why that would make her shut him out. Why she would deny him sex countless time in their marriage, why she would always make out a fight between them almost every night and going home has become a thing of a burden to him.

 

“I am tired Matt; I am tired of the way you make me feel.” She cried out in tears.

 

He took a long look at her again, and this time felt the arousing anger through his veins. He was the one who should be tired; he was the one who had to live with her resentment and all for a long time. He was the one who would always beg just to touch her; he was the one who is tired and he felt she had no right to throw all these guilt at him.

 

“I hope you can manage for the remaining days here; at least for the sake of those who paid our ticket here.” He said and walked out of the room.

 

Shannon felt her heart pounding so fast in anger. After crying and pouring her heart to him, all he had to say was that and walked out on her. Then, she felt he had given up on their marriage and she meant nothing to him after all. The thought of that brought more tears to her. Her head was telling her she didn’t deserve the way he was treating her, but her heart was telling her to fight for her marriage. She had been so absorbed with her own feelings for so long that she hadn’t thought about Matt’s feelings. Was he too not happy in their marriage?

 

This was all she had been scared of, a situation where they would both see the true state of their marriage and here it is. Then, she remembered what Margaret had said to her earlier; ‘Talk to God about your marriage; let him teach you into all truth’. It’s been a while she did even seriously pray about anything; most had been mere rituals and religion and not any real relationship with God. But at this stage of things, she knew her only hope lies with God; He alone can teach her and help her through this.

 

Tears began to pour down her face, her heart pounding so fast in fear; her hands trembling. She sat on the edge of the bed and cried out.

 

“Help me, Lord….” She said in tears. “This wasn’t just about sex in her marriage, it was also about her surrendering her total self to God, walking in obedience to his will for her life. She knew she had gone her own way for a long time and it was time to come back to him.

 

“I need you, Lord, now, please….” She cried out as she sunk on the floor. Her heart was heavy and her fears flooded through her. She wept that night and cried her heart to God; all she wanted now is to surrender to him, and for God to show her places she needed to work on in her life and her marriage and hope for a restoration in her marriage.

 

 

Chapter Five

 

Matt tried to listen closely to the football analyses from David, but his heart was far away from any debate and football talks this morning. After yesterday’s fight with his wife, he had gone out to think, but the more he thought about everything Shannon had said, the easier it was to see his own wrong. All the while, all he did think about was about his own feelings and what he wanted in their marriage and had paid little or no attention to how she felt. When he got back to the room, he found her already asleep, and this morning, Margaret had come to take her to the Spa treatment that came with the resort package.

 

The buzz on his phone interrupted him from his thought. He took it and checked the content, and then he smiled.

 

“I thought this week was only for us, no work related calls or messages.” David frowned.

“No, it’s not work.” He dismissed.

“Oh, so what is it?” He looked straight at him.

“Just a message, sorry.” He placed the phone back on the table.

“Message?” he eyed him. “From who?”

 

Matt realized he had not thought carefully of the answers he gave to him, knowing full well he would want to get to the root of the caller.

 

“A friend.” He said, avoiding his intense gaze.

“Hmm.” David murmured. “I guess this friend of yours knows you are on holiday, thousands of miles away from the United Kingdom.”

Matt looked up at him, unsure of what he meant.

“Are you cheating on Shannon?” He finally asked the question probing his mind for days now.

“What!” he jolted at his question.

“Are you having an affair with someone else son?” He looked straight at him.

“Of course not!” He snapped.

“Well, then I suppose that caller who has been sending you messages since yesterday must be very important; that is the fourth time you looked through your phone this morning.” He raised a questioning look at him.

 

Matt swallowed hard and then rubbed his hands over his face as though to push the tiredness and confusion away.  “Alright, she is a friend, but I’m not having an affair. I would never do that to Shannon; remember you raised me better than that.” He said.

“So what’s the problem?” he challenged.

“Problem?” he frowned. “There isn’t any.” He answered.

 

David stared at him for a while.

“Do you know why I asked you to come along with us?” he asked.

“Yes. To celebrate your wedding anniversary.” He answered.

“Actually, that’s incorrect.”

“What do you mean?” His face showed the strain of confusion.

“I mean, the Lord asked us to.” He answered, but the expression on Matt was still of confusion.

 

David inhaled deeply. “We have been praying for you, and Shannon; we sensed that things have not been all right between you two,” he searched to see an agreement on his face, but it was devoid of any expression. “The more we prayed for you, the more we felt an urgency in our spirit.”

 

“When we booked this vacation; I was calculating the cost for myself and Margaret, but adding up the calculation, it summed up to four passengers. I was stunned and did my calculation again; then the Lord told me I was right the first time and didn’t need to recheck it.” He smiled. “I actually told Him he had miscalculated that we were only two going on the vacation, then, he said, no; your son and daughter-in-law are also going.” He brought his head forward.

 

“I didn’t understand what he meant; I mean, we were the ones celebrating our wedding anniversary and didn’t understand what God meant. He later told me he wanted to do something new in your life and wanted you to go on this vacation and free.” He let out a soft laugh.

 

Matt was confused and was eager to hear more.

 

“I mean, the thought of free made me laugh; I was the one going to pay for four passengers instead of two, but God said I should trust him, that He had it covered.” He looked straight at Matt. “And you know; He did have it covered; Margaret had returned from the store later that evening; she said a sales representative in Sainsbury store approached her that her points on her card had just won a travel holiday to St Lucia for four passengers.”

 

Matt was stunned.

 

“I was stunned too when she told me, I mean, she had been out all day and I had not even told her what the Lord told me.” He smiled profoundly at him.

 

“So you see; I’m not sure what God intend doing with you, but I sure know that he wants to do something in your life, most importantly in your marriage. He had to take you thousands of miles away from your job, home, chores to get your attention.” He looked straight at him. “So son, if that caller isn’t your wife; you had better switched off that phone.” He looked widely at him.

 

Matt was gob-smacked; he felt like a little boy who had just been scolded by his father. He reluctantly took his phone and switched it off

 

He inhaled deeply and looked at the man whom he had called father for a long time. He knew he had to open up somehow to him.

 

“We are having problems,” he started to say. “Shannon has changed; she changed a lot of things in our home and nothing seems to be working.” He said sadly.

 

David nodded slowly.

 

“I can’t seem to get her to do anything, in fact, majorly, she refused sex for a while, and I would have to beg her to have sex with me. She rages; throw tantrum and shout at everything as if she’s frustrated about our lives together.” He said bluntly. “I have tried everything, but nothing is working anymore; she complains about not showing her affection or talking with her, some sort of nonsense.” He threw his hands into the air. “I honestly don’t seem to understand her anymore.”

 

David inhaled too and allowed the silence between them.

 

“I have found out,” David started to say, “that a lot of couples fall into the habit of playing manipulative, selfish games with each other.” His gaze fell on Matt. “Instead of mutually giving to one another, they play games to hurt their relationship.” He shook his head.

 

Matt straightened in his seat. “Exactly; this is exactly what she does; manipulative and selfish mind games.” He grimaced.

 

 

“We are all guilty of this, including you.” He pointed at him.

 

“What!” Matt frowned.

 

“This is all because we don’t understand our differences sexually; you see, women are wired as ‘no love, no sex’ while men are into ‘no sex, no love’. Your wife wants you to value her, love her and make it known to her; show affection and long for her, show that you care enough to wait even when she says she’s not up to it; but we men is all about, ‘have sex with me now, then I’ll know you love me’” he chuckled.

 

Matt threw his hands in the air to disagree.

 

David waved his hand to stop him. “We are different beings and guess what, God made us to be different sexually; He wants us to learn how to adjust to each other, understand each other sexually. He wants us to pay attention to the little things in our spouse lives’, to love them as Christ loves us and not demand love or even sex from them.” He readjusted himself in his seat.

 

“Sometimes, we place too much burden on our wives when it comes to sex and make them feel that is the only thing we want from them, like, their only objective in our lives, and when they are not up to it or when they don’t feel adequate to the task; it causes a lot of resentment in the marriage.”

 

Matt inhaled deeply; he felt every word was talking straight at him now. He realized a lot of things he had been doing wrong in his marriage. He had always placed so much emphasis on their sexual life and lost focus on making love and showing affection to his wife.

 

“Sex is about physical touch, to be sure, but it is about far more than physical touch. It is about what is going on inside of us. Developing a fulfilling sex life means I concern myself more with bringing generosity and service to bed than bringing washboard abdomens. It means I see my wife as a holy temple of God, not just as a tantalizing human body. It means that sex becomes a form of physical prayer[2].” He smiled.

 

Matt sat forward to listen more to the old wise man in his life; he felt God was showing him some deep truth about how his marriage should be.

 

“You need to sexually pursue your wife outside the bedroom. Good sex is an all-day affair. You can’t treat your wife like a servant and expect her to be eager to sleep with you at night. We think sex fixes things on its own —but it doesn’t do that for a woman. A good lover works just as hard outside the bedroom as he does inside it.” He smiled at him.

 

“When we don’t understand these principles, and then with the resentment, we create in our home, we create an avenue for the enemy to invade our homes; like the certain text messages you have been entangled with.” He raised an eyebrow at him.

 

“To be honest dad; I’m not having an affair; we met a few months ago at a work function but just messages and emails since then,” Matt argued. “But she’s just easier to talk to, would listen without nagging back at him, you know.”

 

David shook his head to disagree. “Son, when you find yourself connecting with another person who starts becoming even the smallest way a substitute for your marital partner, you have started travelling a dangerous path.” His eyes widen.

 

Matt was shocked when he heard that. David was right; ever since the months of messages and emails to Tara; he’s found himself attracted and connected to her. No day passes without checking in on her.

 

“Every couple should always put fences around their heart and protect the sacred ground that is reserved only for their spouse.  There are some special kind of emotional connection that only you and Shannon should share; so when you began to give these things to a stranger, you are cheating!” his eyes pierced through him.

 

Matt was steeled.

 

“Now, tell me; does Shannon know about this special email lady?” he searched his eyes for an answer and realized what it was. “When you conceal or keep secrets of a certain person in your life away from your spouse, you have to be careful. Secrets can destroy a marriage son, doing things that you know your spouse will never agree to can break homes into pieces.” He spoke softly to him.

 

“The fear of God is very important in every home and one’s life; talk to your wife, have an open communication about sex between you two, I mean, who better should you discuss such with?” he stared at him in silence for a brief moment.

 

“I want you to fall back in love with your wife; grow together in love and work harder to rekindle the love and affection between you. You know, I heard somewhere that ‘Your wife’s view of sex is much different than yours. Her sexual fulfilment is connected to everything else in her life. When she feels close to you emotionally, she is more responsive. When she is in touch with her children and is proud of how you father them, she is more attracted to you. When her career is moving forward and you are supportive of her pursuits, she finds you irresistible. The more you are a part of her life; the stronger is her desire for you[3].”

 

Matt nodded in agreement; after all, he’s heard some part of it from the Shannon.

 

“For women, sex is much like having a nice, rich piece of chocolate cake. It’s one of those little luxuries of life that we allow ourselves to indulge in periodically. It seems to fit best at the end of a full-course meal of conversation, affection, safe touch, and quality time together. It’s a perfect ending to a perfect meal. As a matter of fact, they like to take their time with this experience, to savour every bite and truly enjoy its rich and satisfying nature. And once they have indulged, they’re satisfied for a while. We usually don’t want another piece right away or maybe even for several days. We’re content to savour the memory of the last piece of cake and how wonderful it was. Get the picture?[4]” he smiled at him.

 

Matt returned the face; he never knew hearing ‘sex talk’ from his father could be this enlightening.

 

“It’s not that she doesn’t enjoy sex; most women actually do. It’s simply that she doesn’t require it the way you do. For her, the cake is the foreplay with intercourse as the icing (so to speak) of the relationship. The icing isn’t much good without the cake to put it on. On the other hand, even cake without icing is often very enjoyable. So how do you get to the icing? Take time to fix the full-course meal and bake the cake, and I’m sure she will be more happy to ice it for you[5]. David smiled.

 

Matt brushed his hands through his hair; he couldn’t believe why he had not opened up sooner to hear all these secrets. He felt like an opening to the secret of marriage was been laid down before him. Right there, he realised he had to do the right thing; he had to make things right by Shannon and most importantly let God into their sexual lives.

 

“Trust me, son, when I tell you that I understand and know what you are struggling with; don’t make the same mistake I made with my Margaret; don’t let your marriage fail.” He looked at him with a firm face. “You need to touch your wife’s heart; you need to love her irrespective of all.”

 

Suddenly Matt stood up quickly. “I have to go.” He announced.

 

David was stunned as he walked quickly away from him; then he turned back and came to him.

 

“Have I ever told you that you are the best father any son could ask for?” he looked kindly at him. “I love you dad, thank you.” He said and ran quickly away from him.

 

A few minutes later, he entered the spa centre where his wife and Margaret were and it wasn’t long until he spotted her at the salon room, a young lady was painting her toe nails. He walked quickly to her.

 

Shannon was stunned to see him.

 

He swallowed the lump in his throat and looked directly into her eyes.

 

“You are the love of my life,” he started as he got the attention of everyone there in the room. “I love you so much, and I am sorry for everything that I have done to you.” His face fixed at her.

 

“You mean the world to me, and I have done things differently because I did not understand.” He moved closer and lowered himself to her. “I know better now, I have heard some things today that I never knew and I am ready to do things differently, to love you better.”

 

Shannon cleared her throat as she noticed the piercing eyes on them, so she stood up, took him by his hands and walked out of the room.

 

“I am sorry for the way I have treated you,” Matt continued as they got outside. “I can’t begin to explain what I have learnt today; the things I should have done better in our marriage; the way I should have treated you in my life.”

 

Shannon could feel the tears bunching in her eyes and she made no attempt to wipe them away. She listened as he spoke about everything he should have done better in their marriage and the new revelation he discovered. He confessed about the new chat friend he’s had for several months now. They later went back to their room and spoke at length. Shannon also apologised for the way she had treated him in their marriage. They both wholeheartedly forgave each other and prayed for God’s restoration and healing into their homes.

 

They both realised that for better days ahead, they have to submit solely to God to teach them and led them to a fruitful marriage.

 

That night; they had a connection they never felt before in their marriage, then ended up making love and this time around, it was the most beautiful experience they both never had before.

 

The End.

Thank you, folks, for reading. I do hope you enjoyed and were blessed. I will be happy to hear your thought or even words of encourgement to couples out there. Please do comments and share. God bless.

-Abimbola Circlesoflove.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

[1] Bill and Pam Farrel, “Red Hot Monogamy”

[2] Gary Thomas, “Sacred Marriage,” pg. 226

[3] Bill and Pam Farrel, “Red Hot Monogamy,” p. 195

[4] Marriage mission

[5] Dr Debbie L. Cherry, Child-Proofing Your Marriage, pg. 141

 

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My Pain, My Gain 3

Chapter Eleven

 

Kathleen says:

‘Where do I go from here? The event that took place several hours ago was life wrecking. I couldn’t get over what had happened. I kept playing the whole scene in my head. My mother finding out that I had been sleeping with Paul; the fact that my mother isn’t my real mother, or the fact that I am mother’s daughter? I just couldn’t believe how I have played my life. All these years, I had blamed my mother for all that had happened, not knowing that the blood of a betrayal had been flowing freely through my veins. Wait a minute! Make that the blood of two betrayals. My father whom I had always looked up to; he was my hero, the man that gave me everything I ever wanted. Yet, he was the same man who betrayed his own wife, and slept with a prostitute and a thief. Yes, I said it. My blood mother was a prostitute and a thief. She was the one who started this whole battle in our lives.

I had no idea of what to do or where to go from here. Mum had excused herself to her room since the whole confession. I knew her heart was breaking; finding out that her husband had molested her only child, and kept her as his mistress under the same roof was a horror to behold. I actually wouldn’t blame her if she hated me after this. She was the victim in all these; she had been the victim all the while. She had been living with all the lies, deceits and betrayal all her life. She served them, loved them and was loyal; she stood by them all, and got nothing good out of it.

 

Chapter Twelve

 

Sophia sat in the living room staring into the air. She was tired of crying; the pain in her chest was becoming unbearable, and she didn’t want any illness added to the one she was dying of. She realized how difficult the revelation would do to Kathleen, and how she would move on from all these. She knew she had to make things right, she had to let her know that none of these were her fault.

This morning after she left Kathleen in her room; she had gone into her own room and started to bring out everything that belonged to Paul. His clothes, shoes, their wedding pictures, and everything he had in the house. She took them all to the back garden and burnt it all. She couldn’t believe how she’d lived with the monster for many years and never figured out what he was doing to her daughter. Although she’d suspected he had been cheating on her; from the numerous text messages she had seen on his phone, the unexplained business trips and excessive spending and bills. But she never knew he was also sleeping with her own daughter. She felt like a total failure.

 

Chapter Thirteen

 

Kathleen had locked herself up in her room for three days. Her mother had to force her to eat something during these days. Sophia also took the time to apologize for neglecting her all these years, and for many other things that had happened. She had refused to go back to work; she knew something was changed inside of her. She couldn’t go on doing the things she did before. She had to make a change in her life, she had to come clean to herself and to everyone she did hurt, but didn’t know how.

She couldn’t bring herself to face Mrs. Jones; she felt bad for all that she did. She also regretted sending the email to Collins. She felt ashamed, and couldn’t face him after all that he knew about her. She had logged off from all social networks, and deleted all her accounts from them all. She refused to pick up any calls that came through her phone, and after few days of messages alert and missed calls, she took out her sim card and flushed it down the toilet drain.

 

On the fourth day, she got out of bed to have a bath. She finished, and got dressed; then she decided to go through her wardrobe to throw some of her old clothes away. She knew she would never wear some of it again; it was her way of letting go of some of her pasts. Then, she spotted an old box she’d kept as a young girl. They contained some old photographs, diaries, a bible and some books she used to treasure, but had kept them locked away for many years.

She opened it, and the first thing that caught her attention was an old picture she took with her father. It was on a fateful Sunday he had taken her out for ice-cream, and then took the picture when he poked her nose with some of the ice-cream. The beautiful smile on their faces brought tears to her eyes. She missed him so much, and wished he was here to tell her what to do. She remembered that particular day; she had left the tap running in her bathroom, and went off to church with her parents. On getting back home that afternoon, the whole bathroom and her bedroom was flooded with water. When Kathleen discovered this, she switched off the water, and went to hide somewhere in the house. She felt because she had been warned severally to always switch off. Her father had discovered this, and found her where she was hiding. He asked her why she was hiding, and she said she had been afraid. That day, her father reminded her about the story of Adam and Eve, how they also hid from God after eating the forbidden fruit. That incident brought about sin to mankind. He explained that, although they had sinned against God, but He still loved them. He also loved us so much that he sent his own Son Jesus Christ to die for all our sins. Her father also explained that he had also done many terrible things, but the Lord forgave him all his sin. He told her that when she does anything wrong, she should never hide from the Lord. She should always come clean to him, and His mercy and unfailing love would always be available to her.

 

Kathleen learnt in that incident that her father loved her no matter what she did. Even more, that the Lord loved her no matter what mistake she’d made in life. She’d forgotten that lesson until now. The picture reminded her of something great, something that was about to bring about a change in her life. She realised that she had been hiding and making more mistakes. She felt she was unworthy and couldn’t stand in the presence of God because of her sins. Just like Adam and Eve, she was afraid of what the Lord would do.

 

Kathleen allowed the tears bunching her eyes flow freely down her cheeks. She knew she had to go back home. Her father had always taught her that her home wasn’t just the four walls of her house; her home was also the presence of the Lord. She never did understand much of what he talked about then. He would always speak of the unfailing love of God. He said he wasn’t perfect, although Kathleen thought otherwise. She saw him as the most perfect man in the whole world. He did no wrong in her eyes; he was a good father to her. She remembered him telling her that when he sinned against the Lord, he did felt ashamed of himself. He said he couldn’t stand to go into the presence of God, but he knew the more time he was away from God, the greater the chances the devil had in his life. Kathleen had no idea what he meant in those days, but she knew now. He had been talking about the things he did to her mother, his betrayal. She was too young then to have understood all these.

 

Kathleen placed the picture on her bed, and knelt down. She wanted to pray, she wanted to say something to God, but words failed her. Her heart was screaming out to God to help her, her body was asking for forgiveness, yet her mouth wouldn’t utter the words in her heart. She was flooded in tears; she was moaning, and her hand had a tight grip on the bed.

“Oh Lord…” she whimpered.

She felt unworthy to stand before him. She couldn’t just ask him to forgive her of all sins. It felt like a free ticket than she deserved. She wouldn’t believe she could just pray and ask the Lord to forgive all the things she had done wrong, the people she had hurt, and he would just forgive her. Just like that! She felt she does not deserve to be forgiven, she does not deserve any mercy from him.

She knelt down there moaning in tears, but her mind was re-counting all the things she had done in her life. The mistakes, the sleeping around, the lies, deceit, those that trusted her, but she betrayed. The burden was just too much to bear; the pain was breaking her heart.

“Please, help me…,” she cried out. “Help me daddy…,” she broke down into more tears. She had not meant to say the word ‘daddy’. It just came to her. She was referring to God as daddy. She couldn’t imagine how torn down her own father would have felt if he was alive to see all the thing she had done. How much more God had felt knowing and seeing all her sins. She felt like a filthy rag before him, she wanted to stand up and run as fast as she could.

“I am sorry…,” she wailed, “Please forgive me….” She cried brokenly. She knew there was no where she could run to that the Lord couldn’t find her. In fact, she was tired of running, she was tired of hiding. Her mind flashed back to when she was hiding from her father after she had flooded her room; she remembered how her heart had been pounding so fast in fear of the punishment she could receive, only, her father never did punish her. Instead, he told her about the love of the father. The mercy that we do not deserve but he gave freely to us.

She knew that if there was anyone that could save her now, it could only be the Lord. She lay down on the floor and cried out for mercy. She prayed that he could wash her clean, that he would take all the evil she had done and cleanse her heart. A lot of things were making new sense to her now; she remembered when she prayed as a young girl and she would ask God to forgive all the sins she did committed. It was merely a religious routine to her back then, but it had a new meaning to her now. It wasn’t enough to ask the Lord just to forgive without cleansing. She had to also pray that he wash away all the things she had done. To take away the pain and the effect it had on her. She wasn’t asking for a new memory, like it never happened before, she was asking that He takes away the dirt, the stains it had on her. That night, Kathleen cried and prayed. She begged and prayed for mercy; she asked the Lord to make her new, to change her life. After then, she slept off there on the floor.

 

 

Chapter Fourteen

 

Sophia sat with unease at the waiting room of the St. Andrews hospital. She’d been waiting to see her doctor for twenty minutes; her heart seems to be pounding so fast that it felt like it was about to burst out. She had called in a few days ago to book this appointment after some unusual way she’d been feeling. A part of her didn’t want to get too optimistic about the result, but another part believed this may be the result of her prayers. Compare to weeks ago, she’d been feeling much better and stronger in the past three days. The fatigue she usually felt was lessening, and a renew of strength in her body. She had been praying for a miracle, a healing that only God could give to her, and felt this was it.

“Mrs Coker.” The Nurse called, but Sophia was lost in her thought.

A gentle tap on her shoulder made her jumped.

“I’m sorry to startle you,” the nurse said politely, “the doctor is ready to see you now.” She smiled at her.

Sophia nodded, and picked up her hand bag from the seat next to her. She followed behind her without saying a word. The pounding her heart made it difficult to speak.

The nurse led her to the room, and opened it. There, Doctor Lucas was waiting.

“Sophia, how good to see you.” He greeted.

“Hello.” Sophia smiled, and sat on the chair he offered.

The nurse dropped the medical file on his table, and went out of the room. Sophia noticed how big the file had become; it was only a few pages several months ago when she discovered something wasn’t right in her body.

“I’m so sorry I couldn’t see you before this, I was away on a medical retreat.” He took off his glasses, and smiled tenderly at her. Doctor Lucas had been their family doctor for quite some number of years. He had been a friend of her late husband; they attended the same University back then several years ago, and remained friends. It had been heart breaking for him when he announced she was dying of cancer, and that there was nothing medically he could do for her after months of treatment.

“So, you are here about what we discussed on the phone?” He made eye contact.

“Yes.” she braced herself to hear his thought, but before he could speak further, she started to explain. “It is possible, right?” she asked, and didn’t wait to hear his response. “Anything is possible,” she added. “I can be cured,” She sat forward to him. “I know medically it can be deem nonsense, but there is nothing impossible for God to do.” Her face lilted up to hear his response. “You and I know that God can heal all diseases? I have heard cases of people dying of cancer, and suddenly, the doctors couldn’t find any traces of it in their body.” She clapped her hands together. “It is possible, right?” she saw the distress look on Doctor Lucas’s face, so she settled back in her seat.

 

Lucas smiled warmly to her, and closed her file on the table. “You know I am all for miracles and I certainly believe God can do anything-

“Exactly what I am saying,” Sophia jumped in her seat. “I feel so much energy that I haven’t felt in months. I feel strength in me.” She raised her hands into the air.

“Yes I understand.” He said, and inhaled deeply.

“But-“ Sophia looked at him like he was about to say something different. She sat down. “What you mean but? I mean, you don’t feel the same way I do?”

He stood up from his seat and went to stand in front of her. “Sophia, I am your number one fan of fighting this disease. I want you cured, healed in fact from any traces of cancer in your body, but I don’t want to get your hopes up until I can see the results of the test I ordered you should take a few hours ago.”

“And what does the result say?” she swallowed hard.

“I expecting them by tomorrow.” He put his hand on her shoulder. “However, I want you to take plenty of rest; I don’t want you stressing yourself because of so much energy I see in your eyes.” He smiled at her.

“I haven’t felt this much energy in so many months,” tears were bunching in her eyes. “I just feel great.” She wiped the tears quickly before they could roll down.

“You look great.” He said to her.

She let out a soft laugh. “You always say the nicest things to me, but I stopped believing you a long time ago.” She teased him.

“You do look great, and I know the good Lord is in control of your life.”

Sophia brought her hands to her cheeks. “Thank you Lucas. I am blessed to have you as my doctor.” She stood up.

Doctor Lucas stepped away from her to open the door. “Please, do take things easy, ok.” He opened the door for her.

“I will. Thank you again, and my love to Angela and the kids.” She said on her way out.

“See you soon.”

“Bye.” She said, and walked out of the room.

 

Chapter Fifteen

 

Sophia walked out of the hospital building in haste. She was eager to get back home and do the things she’d been dreaming to do for days now. She wanted to go to the beach, and had planned to ask Kathleen to come along with her. She was looking forward to walking in the sand barefooted, and the wind blowing over her face.

She was getting to her car when she saw a familiar face standing by it. Anger arose in her when she saw Paul.

“How dare you.” She shrieked.

“Sophia.” He looked solemnly at her.

“What are you doing here?” she shouted at him. She had wanted to call the police on him the day after Kathleen had confessed to her. She had been furious and wanted to lock him up, but Kathleen had begged her not too.

“I was waiting for you.” He said.

“You do have the gut to come near me after what you did.”

“It’s not what you think, please Sophia-

She interrupted. “What!” she was stunned. She couldn’t believe he just said that. ‘What should she have thought?’ “Did you just say that?” She shouted. “You raped my daughter, you sick bastard.” She screamed at him.

“Please Sophia.” He tried to hush her when a man walking by had looked at them.

“Don’t you dare hush me?” She shouted louder. “I don’t want to see your face again; I don’t want you near me or my daughter.” She warned.

“You have to hear my side of the story.” he tried to touch her.

She jerked away. “Don’t you dare,” she shouted out in tears. “What kind of an animal are you?”

“Sophia.” He called out.

“Don’t ever call my name again.” She stepped away from him, and then walked back and faced him squarely. “I was at the hospital, grieving for the baby I had lost, your baby, and you were at home forcing yourself on my daughter. She was a child Paul; she was just a child, my baby.” She screamed at him, and started to hit him harder on the chest.

Paul tried to hold her hands, but she moved away before he could stop her.

“You are a wicked man,” she spat at him, and then wiped her hands down her face. She tried to steady her breathing, and reduce the swelling in the chest. She could feel her heart racing, and wanted to get it under control.

“I really don’t know what to say to you in this state you are in.” He said coldly.

This state.” She repeated, and felt anger bursting through her dam. “In this state, I would like to kill you!” She clenched her fist in disgust.

He looked stunned, and then he had a smirk look on his face.

Sophia felt repulsed by him standing there. He had no sign of remorse on his face. She realised that he was just a monster, he was a man whose mission was to destroy her life, and he almost if not succeeded in doing that. She had made a mistake the very first day she meant him, and then another greater mistake when he asked her hands in marriage and she accepted. She had been so blinded that she refused to reason with few friends who had warned her about him. They said he was in for her money, but she believed otherwise. He had been so nice to her, but preyed on her vulnerability.

Paul looked at her for a minute, and then picked up his car keys that had fallen on the floor when she was hitting him.

“I came home –“

“No no no….” she shook her head to disagree. “Don’t you call it your home; It’s not your home. It was supposed to be a haven to protect my daughter, to keep her safe but you made it hell for her.” She pointed angrily at him. She couldn’t believe he could still come to the house. He had no business to come over again, that was her house, the house she owned.

He chuckled. “Alright, I went over to the house, and Gabriel said you went to the hospital, but I couldn’t find any of my things.”

Her head dropped forward in exasperation. She made a note to warn Gabriel, her gateman about this when she got home. He had no business telling anyone where she went.

“Your things.” She looked at him in disgust.

“Yes, my things. I couldn’t find them.”

“I burnt them all, everything.” She straightened.

“You did what!” His hooded obsidian eyes held nothing but disdain.

“I burnt them.” She saw the horror on his face. She wanted to do more to him; she wanted to take everything away from him, just like he took something away from her daughter.

He threw his hands in the air. “God! You are so-“

She moved closer to him before he could finish, and faced him squarely. “if you dare mention God again, fire will strike you right here.” She poked him hard on the chest.

“How could you?” He looked angrily at her.

“I would like to do more than that to you,” she clenched her jaw at him. “I will like to destroy everything you hold dearly, but couldn’t find any. “Now listen and listen careful cos I am only going to say this once. I do not want you in my life. Your name has been written out of my life, my accounts, my properties or anything it was on before. You do not hold or have any right over me and if you dare come ten meters to where I am again in your life, I promise, you will regret it.” She locked eyes with him so he could see the fire in her eyes.

Paul swallowed hard.

“One last thing, let my lawyer know where to send the divorce papers.” She pushed him hard from her way; got into her car, and drove out of the parking lot leaving him standing there.

 

Sophia felt her hands trembling after driving for a few minutes; she had to pull to the side of the road to try to steady it. Tears flushed down her cheeks; she had sworn in her heart to kill him when she sets her eyes on him. She couldn’t believe she had to let him get away with his crime. She wanted him to pay, she wanted him to rot in jail, and above all, she wanted him to rot in hell.

Kathleen had begged her not to involve the police; she said no one would believe her, considering her own lifestyle now. She said Paul knew who she had become, and it would only be her words against his. She had confessed to her mother all the other things she had been involved in, and not even the police would give her the justice and clean slate she wanted.

 

She struggled to steady her breathing and reduce the swelling emotion in her chest. She broke down into more tears right there in her car, she felt defeated and hopeless. She had thought if God had indeed healed her, it would be a second chance to make things right, but somehow, she knew there wasn’t any second chance. Lives had already been destroyed, mistakes that no one could go back to amend had been made. Suddenly, she put the car into ignition and started to drive away, she knew one place she had to go. It was a place she had not been to for several years, somewhere she’d dreaded for a long time.

 

After about thirty minutes of driving, she parked her car in front of the Lagos city cemetery and found her way to her late husband’s grave side. She stood there for a few minutes staring at his name on the headstone, ‘Edward Coker’; there were over-grown weed all over the place. Then, she bent down and started to pull out the weed with her hands; tears sprang in her eyes. Her heart was breaking, she had tried so hard to stay away from him, and from the memory they shared. He had been her first love, the only man who knew her; they had their weaknesses, and setbacks in their marriage, but they worked through it, together. When Edward died, it was like her whole world had crashed.

After clearing the leaves away from his tomb stone, she knelt down and wiped the tears away from her eyes.

“I haven’t been here in a while,” she started. “I am so sorry….” She whimpered. “I am sorry for staying away……; I just couldn’t bear to see you here.” Suddenly, she let out a loud groan. Her throat felt like it was burning, there was pain in her chest; tears of utter despair filled her. She had a tight grip on her stomach and cried out.

“Oh God,” She cried out. “I messed up Ed. I really messed up.” She groaned. “You always knew what to do, you were the strong one.”

 

She felt a hard lump growing in her chest. “I am not strong like you, I don’t know what to do…..Tell me what to do,” she whimpered.

“Madam, are you okay?” A man was standing by her side. She had not seen him walk up to her.

“What!” She jolted.

“Are you alright?” The man asked again.

She stiffened, and stood up quickly. “Yes, I’m ok.” She said, and started to walk away.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to startle you,” the man called after her, but she continued to walk away.

She continued into her car, and drove away.

 

 

 

 

Chapter Sixteen

 

Kathleen had been hiding in the downstairs guest toilet for over an hour. It was when she heard a car drove into their compound. She had looked through the window and saw Paul came out of the car. She couldn’t believe he was back; she became frightened; old memories flashed through her mind so she went quickly to hide before he could see her. She had gone into the toilet to hide, but heard his footsteps when he came into the living room. A few seconds later, he walked upstairs, and then back downstairs.

Kathleen was trembling in the toilet, she sat with her knees to her chest, praying so hard he couldn’t check in there. Then, she heard him cussing and shouting for his things. Kathleen knew he wouldn’t find any of them since her mother had burnt them all. Then, after few minutes of barking hard in the living room, she heard a big bang on the front door. She later heard him driving out of the compound.

She couldn’t believe the amount of fear she felt, she wanted him out of her life, not to be afraid of him, and hiding for the rest of her life. But she couldn’t bring herself to face him; she was not strong enough to stand and look straight into his eyes again.

 

Again, she heard the door open again and someone walked in. She felt her heart skipped a beat. She heard footsteps fading away, like the person was going up the stairs, then few minutes later, the steps started to get closer. Her heart was beating so fast, sweat beads rolled down her head. The door opened, and her mother poked her head in.

“Kathleen, are you in here?”

She swallowed hard when she saw her mother. Sophia was stunned when she saw her face; she looked like she’d just seen a ghost. “Are you alright? she asked.

Kathleen went quickly into her mother’s embrace. He was here, he came home.” She shivered.

“Did he hurt you, did he touch you?”

“No, no he didn’t. I hid in the toilet; I couldn’t let him see me.” She whimpered.

Sophia brought her back into her embrace. “I am so sorry dear, I am so sorry…,” she rubbed her back. Sophia didn’t want her daughter living like this; she didn’t want her hiding for the rest of her life.

“I promise you Kathleen, he will never hurt you again. Never!” She patted her back to assure her. She knew what she had to do, she had to make things right. She had to protect her daughter at all cost.

 

 

Chapter Seventeen

 

Sophia sat in her car, looking straight at the entrance of the Ritz hotel in the central part of Lagos. She inhaled deeply and got out with her bag. She had called Paul earlier today that she wanted to come see him. He had been so thrilled to hear from her, so he texted his hotel address to her.

Sophia entered the building, and walked to the reception.

“Hi, I’m here to see my husband, Paul Adams.” She smiled at the lady at the reception.

“Ok, please give me a minute.” The lady picked up the telephone and spoke into the receiver; few seconds later, she smiled and put the phone down. “You can go up ma’am, room 46. Take the lift to the third floor.” She pointed towards the lift.

“Thank you.” Sophia nodded and walked towards it.

She took the lift, and pressed the third floor. Then, she walked up to his room, and knock lightly.

Her heart leaped when he opened the door; he had a solemn smile on his face.

“Sophia, I am so glad you are here.” He said.

Her face was void of any smile.

“I’m really glad we can work through this,” he went to stand at the centre of the room.

Sophia put her hand into her bag, and brought out a gun.

He turned around and froze up when he saw the gun.

Her face was quivering in rage.

He swallowed hard. “Sophia!” he put his hands up. “What are you doing with at?” he moved slowly away from her.

“I have to make sure you don’t hurt her again.” She pointed the gun at him, and used the other hand to shut the door.

“Sophia,” he muttered. “Please….”

“You can’t hurt her any more if you are gone.” She flashed an angry look at him.

“I will never hurt her…, I swear.” He was trembling.

Her face was smouldering with resentment. “But you did before, you hurt my little girl.”

“I….” he stammered. “I… don’t…”  shame and indignation caused his mouth to tremble.

“You are a monster Paul, an evil man.”

Sweat rolled down his face. “I am sorry…”

“I have to protect my daughter; I have to make things right.” She stepped closer to him.

“Think about what you are about to do, think about the consequences.” He said.

“What consequences?” She shouted.

“You might end up in jail, or sentence to death,” he nodded his head, “Please…” He begged.

“Guess what? I’m already dying. I have nothing to lose.” She dropped her bag on the floor, and held the gun with her two hands.

Paul shook his head to disagree; he saw the angry look on her face and he knew exactly what she wanted to do. He moved away from her until his back hit the wall. “I will never hurt her; I swear to you; I will never touch her.” He moaned in tears.

“I know you won.” Then she pulled the trigger. Bang! She felt adrenaline drove through her body. Bang! She pulled the trigger again.

 

To be continued.

Thank you for reading. Kindly leave your comments here please.

 

 

 

 

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I am not alone

“O our God, won’t you stop them? We are powerless against this mighty army that is about to attack us. We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help.” 2 chronicles 20:12.

Are you feeling this way lately? You are attacked on every side and drained of your strength. This attack can be in form of anything; sickness, job, finances, family, business, anything. You feel that the enemy has suddenly risen his head against you; they are seeking for your defeat and you can’t seem to find a way out. The King of Judah felt this way when the armies of Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir came against them. Imagine, three countries at the same time all against this one country. That seems to be unfair, unequal. Sometimes in life, we find a lot of different things happening to us all at the same time. You wake you in the morning to find out the car has suddenly stopped working and you need to fix It urgently, then, there is a massive bill you have to pay with zero amount in your account, and suddenly, another terrible news about a loved one. All these happening all at the same time. It can also be a life-changing incident, even attacks from so called friends or families, maybe an attack from work.

Now, see what the King of Judah did. He proclaimed a fast in the whole kingdom and they all stood before the Lord. Now the question is, where do you go first when all these happenings occur? Do you first run around sharing this news to people to help or sometimes just to tell them the recent happenings in your life? Some for sympathy or others. My favourite is the ‘Facebook proclamation’. You suddenly change your status to ‘Sad’ and of course, you start getting the comments and questions on what’s going on with you.

This particular King did not call the neighbouring countries for help. He didn’t seek to ally with other Kingdoms to join them in fighting these enemies or even a poster of what was happening in his own kingdom. The bible said he called all the people in his kingdom, old and young, children and even the little ones and proclaimed a fast to seek the face of the Lord.

Then the Lord answered them and said, ‘Do not be afraid or dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours but God’s’. Then, He went further to say, ‘You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem! Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.’

Folks, the Lord is great in power and greater than any multitude of armies or circumstances you might be facing. He wants to deliver and save you from them all. If you have been running the wrong direction, I will ask you this morning to rather seek His face and run to the Lord. King Jehoshaphat went straight to the Lord and he saved and delivered them. The Lord will deliver you too. You need to read the rest of this chapter and see how the Lord delivered them. In fact, they didn’t have to lift up a weapon to fight these armies, the Lord caused the armies to fight against each other and even blessed the children of Judah with their riches.

I pray that the Lord will turn every sadness to joy, He will give you peace from every side and every war will cease now in Jesus name. Those circumstances or even people that are seeking your defeat will not only be defeated by their own weapons and plans, you will be greatly blessed from their own defeat. The Lord will turn the table around for your own good in Jesus name. This morning, go and seek his face; give the Lord the highest place in your life and watch him show forth His greatness in your life.

Have a beautiful day.

 

© Circlesoflove 2017

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The Right Stuff

A few days ago, I wrote about ‘Go and Occupy’. The article talked about how the Lord promised to give us the land, and He asked us to take possession of it. Is it a new job you desired, or a promotion, something you have waited long for? He’s promised to give us our heart desires. However, sometimes in life, we know what we want, but are not sure if we will succeed in it. We doubt our abilities, we doubt if we are well suited for that job or position in life. We are afraid of failing.

I remembered some years ago when I got a temporary job at a law firm as a legal secretary. I was still in school but was desperate for that job. I wanted the experience and a foot in the industry.

I had thought there would be a training of some sort, but to my disappointment, the first day I walked into the office that day, I was immediately expected to start work as an experienced legal secretary. I was shocked and afraid that had to pretend I knew what I was doing. It was very frustrating in the first few days as I kept making mistakes, and became so scared to even do anything. I started to doubt my abilities because of the past mistakes. When asked to reply to letters or some sort, I was afraid of failing even before I started. I felt I didn’t have the right stuff for that job, and I lacked the confident to do it.

Do you feel this way sometimes? You feel you don’t have the right stuff in you. You are terrified of your job or even a project. Maybe you’ve had some setbacks in the past, and now afraid of making the same mistakes. You have begun to doubt your ability to succeed in that field of work. You doubt if you will complete that project or even graduate from that course.

In life, we go through stages of experiences: we meet new people, go new places, new steps in career, a new job, marriage, or even parenting, and in each of these phases, we are sometimes terrified of the challenges we face. We doubt if we have the right stuff in us to achieve the set goal. We see others succeeding and often wonder how they do it. Even after you have attained the necessary training, and education required of you, you still doubt your ability to do what’s expected.

Now, let’s take a look at what the Lord said to us many years ago in the book of Jeremiah 1: 5, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you before you were born I set you apart’. Did you get that? Before you were even conceived, he knew who you are and what you would become. He knew the challenges you would face, and the strength you needed to succeed. He knew what you were made of because He put you here. So, therefore, whatever strength, resources, wisdom, and ideas you need to succeed is right there in you. You have the right stuff in you.

 

Now you say, ‘well I don’t see it; I don’t think I have the right stuff in me’. Then maybe it’s about time you tapped into it. If you need wisdom, ask the Lord who created you. He is the God who can do uncommon favours, and you need to tap into it. If you need to attain some sort of training in that job or education, go ahead and do it because you have the strength to go through it.

Remember Gideon in the bible. His clan and family were hiding in caves for many years. They were being oppressed by the Midianites for so long that they doubt they would ever get free. It was so bad that they had to grow their food in secret. Then, see what happened in the book of Judges, ‘When the angel of the Lord appeared to Gideon, he said, ‘The Lord is with you, mighty warrior’. Did you read that? He addressed him as a mighty warrior. This was the same man whose families and clan were been oppressed by the Midianites. Why would the Lord address him as a mighty warrior? Because He, the Lord created him, He knew he had the right stuff inside of him. He made him to be a mighty warrior. He made him perfect, good and complete.

When God wants to set you off to high places, He has already put all that you need to succeed right inside of you.

So you see Folks, you have the right stuff inside of you,  even if you just don’t realise it. God did create you perfectly for this world. You need to see yourself the way God sees you. When I say perfect, I do not mean your own definition of perfection. I meant God’s perfection. You were made with a purpose, uniquely suited for this world and anything you ever wish to accomplish. God created Gideon to be a mighty warrior but he never tapped into that part of his life. He didn’t realise he had the right stuff right inside of him. In fact, his clan was the weakest in the land, and he was the least in his family. But you see, that didn’t disqualify him from being a mighty warrior. God made him succeed. This has nothing to do with the family he came from or the school he went to, or the posh school in didn’t go to, or the level of education he has.

 

Remember David. Even his brothers thought he was not qualified to fight against goliath but God didn’t. God made him perfect for that job. He may not be perfect in size, stature, experience or even in the eyes of the world. God had made him perfect before he was even conceived. His own father too never considered him to be qualified for the kingship position, but God did. Now see, it doesn’t matter what people think of you; what matters is what the Most High thinks about you, and my oh my, He thinks so highly of you.

 

Do you doubt your abilities? Do you doubt if you have the right stuff inside of you? Today, you need to go back to your source to know what you are made of. The great resources the Lord has equipped you with. You need to go back to God and hear His voice. Listen to the steps he wants you to take, hear his leading and you will see the wonders He wants to do in your life. Remember, our God does not discriminate on age, race, disability, colour, family line, whether rich or poor, educated or not. He is God, and no one can question him. Whatever you need to succeed is in you, the strength and will are right in you. You have the RIGHT STUFF, you have God.

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A Royal Prisoner

The violent banging on the door jolted Ben from his sleep. He sat up quickly wondering if it was a dream. He could hear his mother’s voice, screaming in some words that he couldn’t make sense of. The noise was becoming louder; the footsteps were heavy and nearer to his room.

Alarmed and frightened, he stood up quickly from his bed, walked towards the door when suddenly it was forcefully kicked, and in a matter of seconds, flashes of light, fierce shouting and about two men grabbed his shoulders and pinned him to the ground, trying to restrain him.

 

“What is this?” He shouted, confused. “What’s going on?” He was rattled. “Who are you?”
“Are you Benjamin Cooker?” Someone shouted in his face.
“Yes, yes, yes, please, who are you?” It was hard to breathe.
The light in the room suddenly came on; only then did he realise who they were; several police officers in his room.
“Benjamin Cooker, you are under arrest for rape,” one of the officers addressed him, putting a handcuff on him.
“What!” He gasped; mystified.
“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law…”
“You have me confused with someone else,” Ben struggled with the officers holding him. “This is all a mistake.” He shouted louder to be heard.

 

They took him out of his room, there, he saw his mother struggling with the officer keeping her back.
“What are you doing to my son, please,” she cried out. “Where are you taking him to, he’s done nothing.”
His father stood there gobsmacked.
“You have the right to speak to an attorney, and to have an attorney present during any questioning if you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be provided for you at government expense.”

 

 

Ben was stunned and appealed as he was put in the police car. His heart aches to see his mother running after the police care, and his father struggling to hold her.
“Please, you have me confused with someone else, I didn’t rape anyone,” he shouted fearfully at the officers. “This is wrong; I haven’t done anything.”
“Say that to your fellow perverts you would meet in jail.” One of the officers said angrily.

 

Ben was frightened and terrified at the whole thing. He couldn’t understand what was happening. His hands hurt behind his back and felt already like a prisoner.
‘This was probably a dream’, he tried to console himself. ‘This can’t be happening to me; I mean; this shouldn’t happen to me; I am the Benjamin Cooker.’ This thought was going on in his head.
Within few minutes, they were at the police station; he was walked into the building. All eyes were on him; threatening and damning eyes stared furiously at him. Fear gripped him; it was the early hours of the day when he should be sleeping safely in the comfort of his own room not being bombarded by police officers. A slate was hung around his neck and flashes of light as the camera went off, he was asked to turn in the different position to take his photo; his finger print was taken and a swap from his mouth for DNA sample.
Not long after, he was led into a tiny room, and the heavy gate shut behind him. He sat quietly on the flat single bed, dejected and terrified.
Then, it physically registered on him that this wasn’t a dream, it was really happening. Being confined in the tiny room brought tears running down his face.
‘Benjamin Cooker’, he said to himself. That was his name, the name he had so much protected and prided. He couldn’t believe how much trouble he had gotten himself into. It had been only a night of fun that turned into a night that may destroy the rest of his life.

 

A few days ago, he had come home for the summer holiday from school; it was his first year as an undergraduate student at the University of Coventry, studying to be an Architect. His Parents were so proud of him when he received a scholarship to study it was a great pride seeing their eighteen years old son off to the university and succeeding brought so much joy to them.
Right from his primary school, he’d won numerous awards for best student in various competitions and was well known in the community as one of their best students.
Shortly after his entrance into the university, he was introduced to join a fraternity; they called themselves, ‘The brotherhood’. He’d watched so many movies about fraternity group which most likely always go by the same name but didn’t know they truly existed until he was invited to one. He was just a freshman at the University and being invited to well esteem and rich boys club was somewhat great for him.

The guys there were from very rich families and everything a young man would want in life. From the movies, he had thought he would be dragged out of bed in the middle of the night and taken to a remote place for initiation and all but this was far from it. It was an evening gathering of boys in an expensive suit, glasses of wine having a nice time. They talked about football, the stock market and all forms of business he’s not even heard of.

He’s never seen so many wealthy young boys all in the same room; their suits, shoes, watches say it all about them, not to talk of their cars. He felt so much intimated by all these considering his low-class background. They told him that if he joined their club, his future was secured and would have numerous opportunities of wealth in life. They had god-fathers who would ensure their future is well taken care of. They stated their rule which wasn’t so difficult, ‘help and support every brother in need, protect and guard their interest’.

 

 

A Few days later, he officially joined the brotherhood after a ceremonial gathering was called. He was sworn in by swearing on the ‘black book’, where all their rules and regulations were written in.
His admission into the brotherhood brought many benefits to him, he was relocated to a well-furnished house not far away from the school, to share with some other members and given a Ford fiesta 2015 to start off with. Because of very intelligent, he was placed in the academic department of the fraternity where he would help other struggling members with their studies and receive payment for his services.

 

Life was great, I mean, every boy’s dream was coming to pass in his life; he had nothing to fear, nothing to worry about. He met with Josh, a final year student who took exceptional interest in him. He was practically born into money and a grandson to one of the founding members of the brotherhood. His friendship with Josh bought more respect from other students and even the lecturers, not that he needed it but he was somewhat feared and respected. A Few day to their summer break, he made plans to meet up with Josh in one of the clubs in London.

 

His parents were excited when he got back home; he never told them about his new friends at school. He knew they would frown at such and wouldn’t understand how harmless they were. His Parents were both elders in the church and had taught him about God right from his youth. He decided to keep his life at school secret to himself and be a good church boy when he’s home.

Two days after his return back home, he met with Josh at a local pub not too far from his house. He tried every wine and drank himself to the extreme. Shortly after, Josh decided to drive him home, but on their way in the midst of the fun and laughter, Josh asked him if he wanted to have more fun and do something he’d never done before.

A Few distance away from the pub, Josh parked his car by the side of the road and they both waited in the car. Josh asked him if he’d ever had sex with a stranger. They both laughed about it and drank more beer. Shortly after, they spotted a young girl on the other side of the road; Josh immediately came out of the car and went to her. Ben couldn’t make out what he said to her but the girl cussed at him and started to walk away when Josh grabbed her and carried her into the side of the road, weaving at Ben to come out. Ben followed quickly and followed Josh’s instructions; he helped to push the young girl on the floor and before long, Josh was on top of her while Ben held her two hands to the ground, keeping her from struggling.

 

The young girl cried, begged and screamed for them to stop but he laughed at her while Josh raped her.
He had no idea how he got home that night but when he woke up in the mid-day, he knew something was wrong, he knew he had done the abominable. He was so scared to think about what happened so he went back to bed, sleeping throughout the whole day, woke up to have his dinner and then went back to sleep until early hours when he was arrested. Everything was becoming clearer to him now, the hangover had worn out and he knew exactly what he had done.
*****

 

The bang on the cell gate jolted him from his thought.
“Hey boy, your lawyer is here.” the officer shouted at him. The heavy gate was opened while they cuffed him and led him outside.
As they approached a room, he could see his mother from the glass window and there, he felt ashamed. He had become a disgrace to his family and went against everything they stood for.

Her eyes widened as he was brought in, she stood up quickly going to hold him.
“Oh God! Ben,” she held him close. “Don’t you worry; we’ll get you out of here.” she touched his face to assure him.
His father sat there, stone-faced, staring at him. Ben felt his heart pounding, ‘Did he know the truth?” He thought in his heart.
“Alright,” the other man seated in the room spoke out. Ben realised he was the lawyer.
“My name is Carl Henson; I am going to be your defence lawyer.”
Ben nodded, unsure of how to response.
“Why are we defending? He hasn’t done anything here, they have him confused with someone else.” His mother raged out
“Ma’am,” Carl said.
“No! You are going to get my son out of here right now, today,” she shouted at their lawyer. “this all comes back to racial discrimination. A white girl gets raped, probably by her boyfriend and then, they blame a black boy for the crime. What has my Son got to do with this? He just came back from school a few days ago, an honours student and a respectable boy in the community. I will not stand for this, I will not let anyone use my son as a scapegoat in the name of the law.” she shouted, her eyes widened, staring at the police officer behind the window.
“Sit down Margaret!” The sound of his father startled her.
“What!” she stared at him in disbelief?
“Sit down!” He said again.
“Are you going to sit here and allow them to do this to us, to our son? Are you intimidated by all of them?” She shouted at him, pointing at their lawyer who was also a white man.
“Ma’am!” Carl stood up, insulted by her words.
“Don’t you ‘ma’am’ me!” She screamed at him with tears running down her face. “This is my son we are talking about, my only child; are you going to sit here and let them do this to us? We are the victim here Jonathan, we are.” She cried out to her husband.
Ben couldn’t take this. He felt like ripping his heart off his chest. He dreaded the horror in the room, his mother was hysterical, crying for the innocent child she once knew and unaware of the evil he’s become.
“Ben, do you understand the charges against you?” Carl directed his question at him.
He nodded.
“Do you know any Melissa Gail?” He asked.
The name was familiar. “No.” He replied.
“Alright, a Miss Melissa Gail claimed you raped her two days ago,” Carl said.
The uncontrollable weeping from his mother made him mute; he avoided her eyes.
“Now, my job is to defend you in court but there is strong evidence against us here.”
“I did not rape anyone.” He found his voice, aware of his father’s intense gaze on him.
“You see,” His mother whimpered, “he said it, he didn’t rape anyone, he doesn’t even know who she is.” She cried out.
“The police searched your room shortly after your arrest and found one of your shirts which matched a piece of clothing Ms Melissa torn away from her attacker.” He stared into Ben’s eyes, waiting for an answer.
His mind flashed back to the event, he remembered the girl grabbed his shirt during the attack; Josh had laughed at her, asking her if she wanted to have the two of them at the same time. He was too drunk to realise she had torn his shirt.
“Do you know how a piece of your clothing got into her hands?” Carl looked straight into his eyes.
Stunned. He felt his heart pounding. “I was at a pub that night, maybe, it happened there. I really don’t know.”
“Hmm, that’s could be an explanation,” Carl said.
“I don’t understand all these,” his father spoke out. “How was he identified amongst every young boy in the pub? Was the Melissa girl at the same pub?” His father directed the question to Carl.
Ben was afraid to look at his parents, he had told them he was going to a friend’s birthday party that night, not a pub.
“No, she was coming from the library not too far from her house,” Carl said.
“Then, how did she identify my son.” He asked.
“That’s where it becomes difficult, she physically identified him; gave the full description and address which means they must have met somewhere or someone she already knows before.”
“What?” his mother said in exasperation. “How?”
“That’s where we have to work harder and bring any evidence that will acquit your son from all these charges; you are going to tell me everything that went on that night, what you did, what you ate or drank, the people you met.” he said to Ben which brought a lump to his throat.
These were simple questions but the most difficult he would have to answer to. He knew he couldn’t involve Josh in this, his life would be over and as rules of the brotherhood. He’d heard rumours of old members who went against the brotherhood and the punishment that was issued against them were so severe that it destroyed them and their whole families.
He understands Josh’s position in the society and knows the brotherhood would do everything in their power to make sure nothing destroys his reputation. It wasn’t just his life at stake here, his parents and everyone he loves would be hurt in the process if he does anything contrary to what the brotherhood stands for.
“So, did you go with anyone to the pub that night?” Carl asked, staring at Ben and his pen ready to write down his answer.
“No.” He replied quickly.
“What did you drink?”
“I had a bottle of beer.”
“How many?”
“Just one.”
“But you told us you were going to a friend’s birthday party; how did you end up in a pub?” His mother asked in anger.
“I had a change of plans.” He said quietly with his head bowed.
“You see what change of plans has caused you?” She frowned at him.
“So what happened after you left the pub?” Carl asked.
“I walked back home, alone.” He said.

*****
Thirty minutes later, he was back in his cell. Those few hours with his parent were the most tormenting in his whole life. He’s lied, cheated and sinned against his parents. All his dreams of becoming wealthy and successful were literally all dreams now and have no hope of coming to pass.
He laid on his bed, brought his knees to his chest and wept. He felt his life was over; the life he was starting to enjoy and be a part of is wasting away. The pain in his heart was unbearable; he traded his life with the devil and destroyed everything. He knew the days coming would be more difficult and for the first time in his life, he felt scared and alone. His so-called confident and pride were gone. Even though he was just an accomplice but he felt the guilt all over him. He had held the girl’s hands to the ground and allowed her to be raped and abused by another. What is worse than that?

A few days later, Ben was still in jail as his bail was denied. His mother had become a regular visitor to the prison while his father gave several excuses not to come. In fact, Ben had been relieved when he didn’t show up; he couldn’t bear to see him after all he did. He knew he didn’t believe every word he said the other day but his mother had been the sole believer of his innocence and still believed they have him confused with someone else and the judge would see that when they go to court.

Every visit came with fervent prayers for his freedom and encouragement to stay strong. She told him, everyone, they knew believed in him and all praying for him. All these brought more tears to him; he not only disgraced his family but everyone he knew. He left home for a few months and allowed the world to corrupt the innocence in him. He traded his soul for luxurious, wealth and riches. He gave his future which had been solely guarded by the Lord over to the devil to maintain and keep.
*****

Two weeks later

The Court proceeding has been going on for several hours now.
The prosecution called in the last witness, ‘Melissa Gail’.
For the first time in few hours, he lifted up his head which had been bowed ever since he walked into court. He wanted to see the young lady he was accused of raping.
The name came with a face, the name that has been haunting and tormenting him for several days finally came with a face. He recognised her; she was in the same class with him in his primary school, which was definitely how she identified him. During the questioning, he continued to stare at her even though he was deaf to all the questions until Melissa pointed at him.
He shuddered as their eyes met.
“Do you see the man that raped you in this courtroom?” the prosecution asked.
“Yes,” she answered, pointing at him. His heart started to pound so fast as she stared earnestly back at him. He saw the fire in her eyes; he saw flashes of the same eyes that stared and begged him the other night. He knew she wanted him to pay for what he did to her even though she knew in her heart that he wasn’t the one who raped her.

“No further question.” The prosecution said.
Carl stood up and walked up to her.
“How come there is no DNA sample to connect my client to you?” He asked.
“Objection!” the prosecution said. “Speculations!”
“I will rephrase your honour,” Carl said.
“Although the medical examiner gave evidence of you being raped but there wasn’t any DNA to match my client with you,” Carl said.
“Objection!” the prosecution stood up again. “Speculation your honour, the defence should ask his question and not give theories.” the prosecution eyed him.
“Sustained!” Judge said. “Go straight to your point, Mr Henson.” He said to Carl.
“Why did you wash after being raped?” Carl asked.
“What?” Melissa gasped, repulsed by the question.
“I mean, anyone who has just been raped and wishes her attacker to be caught shouldn’t wash from all evidence that could help the police catch her attacker.” He explained to the jury.
“Now, Miss Gail, why did you wash away the evidence that could have help the police catch your real attacker?” Carl straightened, looking straight at her.
“God! I was raped by this animal,” she cried out. “I wanted to get his smell away from me; I wanted him out of me. I ran home and scrubbed myself in the shower. I couldn’t stand his touch on me, his breath; they were disgusting.” She cried out in anguish. “He held me down on the ground in dirt, he held me and raped me….” she stood up, trembling and hysterical. “He raped me, laughed at me and took my life away.”
There was an uproar; the judge was trying to maintain order in the courtroom. Carl watched the expression of the Jury and knew he was losing the case; Melissa had won their sympathy. They felt her pain and the female jurors looked angrily at Ben, some were almost in tears with her.
“What makes you so sure my client was your attacker?” Carl voiced out.
“Because I look into his eyes while he raped me, I wanted him to remember my face just like I will always remember his face. I cried out his name.” She cried out. “I know who he is, Benjamin Cooker!” she broke down in tears.
Ben felt a heavy weight on him when she called out his name. She had known him whilst he held her hands to the ground. He wished the case would end and he’s given the full punishment to his offence. His heart could take no more of this. Everyone looked at him in disgust; they saw him as an animal. He had drunk himself to the extreme and lost all form of reality when he attacked her. He knew if he was in his right sense, he would never have allowed this act to take place, not to talk of being involved in it.
“Case adjourned.” The Judge announced.
Ben was taken back to his cell but he knew it was over; it was too late to make amends. He had searched in the court room that day to see any of his friends or even Josh, but no one was there for him; they left him to face the music alone. What happened to all of their promises to protect and help every brother, despite the fact that he was doing the same; covering for an act he had not committed alone? It was too late to tell the whole truth now even if he wanted to. Seeing everyone looked at him like a monster made him realised he was better off in jail.
The following day, they were back in the court room.
The jury walked quietly into the court; they passed their decision to the Judge who acknowledges it.
“May the defendant rise.” the judge said.
Ben and his lawyer slowly stood on their feet.
“On the account of rape, the defendant is found guilty and hereby sentenced to eight years in prison.”
The sound of weeping from his mother brought tears to his eyes as he was led away. He tried looking for any sign of the brotherhood again but no one was there for him, not even Josh. His heart sank; how could he have been so foolish to allow this in his life? When did he leave the place of God and walked into the tent of the devil? He remembered the verse in the bible, ‘there’s a way that seems right to a man but the end leads to destruction’ He knew every truth about the word of God, he knew his place in his kingdom, and he practically grew up in Sunday school but threw it all away, all for the sake of physical things and to be associated with people who are no help to him. He felt ashamed to be called the son of God.
“I’m sorry Ben; we’ll have to appeal the decision, something isn’t right somewhere and I will get to the root of it,” Carl said to him in the holding room.
Ben was in tears, unable to control himself. He couldn’t believe all that was happening, he had only come home for the summer holiday but ended up in prison.
“Your mother asked me to give this to you.” he handed a note to him and left the room.
Ben stared at the paper for several seconds; he recognized it, this was one of the drawings he did when he was younger, he had drawn a picture of himself and written below a bible passage his mother had taught him to memorize, ‘But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praise of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. His mother had told him while growing up that he was a special child, chosen by God and he was a royal, a prince from the household of God, but now, sitting in the cell room, he realised he was no longer a Royal priesthood but a Royal prisoner.

The story just begun.

To be continued.

 

Photo credit: Pixabay

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Even in the fire of oppression, God is with you and He won’t let you get burn.

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Jesus Paid the Price in FULL.

Over the years, Easter celebration has become popular and aligned with egg hunting, bunny and so many things.

We need to remind the world, church, our children what Easter is really all about. Jesus Christ paid the price for our sins. This is not an old news or tales by moonlight. Jesus is the same today, tomorrow and forever. His price for our sins lives on and on for generation to come. He paid the price for those not yet born. He paid the price for those who does not even believe in Him. He paid the full price for everyone of us yesterday, today and forevermore.

 

Jesus is the reason for Easter. He is the reason why we are free. He is the reason why we can tell the devil and host of demons ‘you have failed’. We have overcome’. Jesus is the reason why we have the victory over death. He is the reason why we have a place in heaven.

 

Today folks, join me in celebrating the King of kings, the Lord of lords, the Almighty, the Prince of Peace, the Everlasting God, the Greatest, the Lion of the tribe of Judah who became a Lamb for us, the Redeemer, the Jehovah, the Yewah, the ageless God, the Immortal, Invincible, Everpresent, Ever  Loving, Ever Glorious, Omnipresent, Omnipotent, Omniscient, Comforter, Deliverer, Unchangeable, Undefeated, All Power, All Merciful, Majesty…..

His name goes on and on…..

 

Why don’t you join me in glorifying Our King Jesus this morning.

 

Happy Easter Folks.

 

– Abimbola Circlesoflove.

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A Mother’s Cry

Angie looked angrily at her daughter, Emma; she was tired of having this episode every day. It’s always been one fight or the other and it all about the same thing, her way of life; drinking, addiction, late night clubbing and so on.

 

“Alright, I am tired of arguing with you Emma; you are not living this house at this time of the night.” Angie reaffirmed her decision.

 

“Why?” Emma shouted back in fury.

 

“Because a girl of your age shouldn’t be going out by this time of the night.” She shouted back in anger.

 

“You can’t control my life mum and you cannot keep telling me what to do every seconds of my life.” Emma raged out.

 

“This is not a role playing or whatever you may think. I am your mother and right now I am in the position of telling you what’s not and what to do.”

 

“Being my mother is not a licence to control me; I am grown up now, and I can make my own decisions.” she yelled back at her.

 

“You are fifteen for crying out loud; your mates are sleeping by this time not planning to go out. Girls your age go to school and come right back home, not stays out for days.  You call the police or social worker at every slightest scolding but now, listen and listen carefully; as long as I , your mother lives, I will fight so hard to have you come back home, to where you belong. You can fight me as much as you want but I will fight on my knees in prayer.” She looked straight into her eyes.

 

“Honestly mum, you talk too much; every day, every minute, you just go on blabbing and chatting.” Emma said and walked out of the house.

 

 

Angie felt a sharp pain in her head, tired and exhausted; tried all she knows she could to help her wayward child but nothing seems to help. Her shouting, anger and talks have not yielded any result.  She had blamed herself several times at the way her daughter had turned.

 

Once upon a time, she lived a reckless life years ago, and her bad influence had rubbed on her daughter. Angie had her baby in her teens and continued a promiscuous life; parties at odd time of the night. She was into all sorts of drugs, smoking and drinking. She had no regards to life and allowed her daughter watch every step of her life until three years ago when she met with Christ and that changed everything. She changed from her old ways and embraced the new life in Christ. Since then, she’s been trying to bring her daughter into the new life of God.

 

Her fifteen years old girl is out of control; smoking, drinking and living a wasteful life; different piercing all over her body.

 

There was a time they were both  involved in a heated argument that resulted in her slapping her daughter; half an hour later, Emma came back with a social worker and the police accusing her of abuse. Angie didn’t see her daughter for almost a month and then, one day; she was back at her front door and apologized to her and promised to listen and behave herself. Her promise didn’t last a week, and was back where she started from.

 

 

 

 

Angie sat there, staring at the door; she wanted her daughter to have the same kind of peace and joy she did found in Christ and every day since the past three years, she’s been praying and crying out to the Lord to restore and bring her daughter home.

 

 

******

 

A few hours later, Emma was with her gang of friends partying when a fight broke out between two rival gangs; there was chaos everywhere as everyone was fighting, using every weapon available on one another. Before long, they heard the police siren when everyone who could still walk began to run. She fled away from there with others, but they could hear the police behind them. Just then, some of her friends whom they were running together began to shoot at the police, and the police had no choice than to defend themselves. Exchanges of shot of fire were everywhere; confusion and fear gripped her.

 

She had no idea where she was but began to run until she found a small spot where she could hide. She was trembling all over and flooded in tears. She was scared the police were probably after her and was more afraid of being shot at. Just then, like a twinkling of an eye, she found herself in an unfamiliar place; the surrounding wasn’t like any she did see before, it was a long stretch road.

 

She couldn’t see the end of it and not even the beginning, she was standing in the middle of the road alone and frightened. Suddenly, she heard a voicebehind her but there was no one there.

 

“There’s a way that seems right to a man but the end is destruction.” The voice said.

 

“What!” she jolts. “Who said that?”

 

“Why have you been obstinate and so wish to destroy your own life?” the voice asked.

 

“Who are you? Where am I?” she asked, trembling and confused.

 

“I am the angel your mother assigned to you” the angel said, appearing to her.

 

She gasped as she saw the cloud-like man standing before her.

 

“You know my mother…, where is she?” she whimpers.

 

“She is where she’s always been, praying for you.”

 

“Please, where am I? Show me the way back home.” she said in tears.

 

“The decision to go back home depends on you; you have to make that choice.” The

 

Angel said.

 

“I want to go back home.” she said but suddenly the angel was gone.

 

 

 

She looked all around her, but he was nowhere to be found.

 

 

 

“Where are you? Please come back.” she cried out, shivering all over. She began to move forward but noticed her feet were heavy on the ground. On her ankle was long steel chain pulling her back. She dragged her foot with difficulty to take each step. Several minutes later, she was in pain, exhausted and tired and going nowhere. She knelt down in tears.

 

“Please help me…, please…” she cried out. “I can’t go on all by myself; I need you.” She said in tears. Seconds later, the angel returned standing right in front of her.

 

“Oh thank you, you came back. Please help me, I want to go home.” She pleaded.

 

“As I said to you before, the decision lies in your hands; you have to decide.” He said strongly to her.

 

“How?” she asked, confused. She didn’t know where she was or what direction to turn.

 

“You have to go back to your source, your maker; He only can guide your step back home.”

 

“I don’t understand” she said, confused.

 

“God is your maker; he is your Source and only He can guide you back.” He looked into her eyes.

 

“God!”

 

“Yes, God!” he smileD.

 

“I don’t think he can help me. I am not someone he can help.”

 

“Why do you say that?”

 

“It’s only good people that he can help, and I’m not it. I live a terrible life. In my short life, I have done so many horrible things. At one time I have aborted a baby, battered my body with so many things, stolen, I have hit my mother and so many bad things, how can God help me?”

 

“It is not the good the Lord came for; its people like you who think they can’t get redemption from their sins. It’s people like you he refines and redeemed, giving you a new life.”

 

Emma straightened to listen more to him. Every word struck her.

 

“But how can He?”

 

“You have to confess your sins before Him. You are his most wonderful creature. He will wash you, cleanse you and make you whole; your sins he will remember no more, your shame He will take away.”

 

Tears flowed from her eyes as he spoke those words to her. Knowing that there is someone willing to look past every imperfection, weakness and sins and still wants to take you in.

 

“He can hear you Emma, talk to him.” the angel said and went away.

 

Emma sat there in tears; the angel was gone but she felt another presence, a kind of feeling she couldn’t explain.

 

“Oh God! Help me please…” she cried out. “I have gone my own way, but I am coming

 

back to you…, please forgive my sins, forgive me of every wrong and things I have done

 

in my life….” She broke down into more tears. She felt alone and scared.

 

 

Just then, a bright shining light filled the spot she was kneeling; it filled the space and brought her to her feet; her ground was firm; the chains were broken away from her ankle. The light was radiant, magnificent. She stood in awe of his presence; she saw something like a face but was clothed in light, a pure light. Instantly, she fell on her knees; she couldn’t behold his face. It was filled with holiness, righteousness, awesomeness. The splendour and beauty were beyond comprehension. She whimpers in His presence until she heard his voice.

 

“I have heard your cry, I heard your voice my child, everything you have said is right here before him” He said in a powerful and yet soothing voice.

 

“I will have mercy on you and will wipe your tears. I will forgive you and remember your sins no more. I will yet clothe you in love and wash you in mercy. I have always loved you, and I will still love you. My Son, Jesus Christ has cried before me on your behalf and has used his blood in exchange for your life.” He said in the most beautiful voice.

 

She stood there in the wonder of His presence; she felt clothed in mercy, love and forgiveness. Every word he spoke was illuminating to her. It was a kind of feeling you could never comprehend. She felt herself in His embrace and knew beyond words that his love for her is limitless.

 

 

 

******

 

 

 

Seconds later, she was back at the same spot where she had been hiding; everywhere was quiet. She sat there in tears but this time; the tears were of gratitude. She knew she had just met with the Lord, and his love filled her heart. She came out of her hiding and did the short walk back home. Still soaked in tears, she gently knocked the door to her house since she lost her keys in the whole commotion.

 

Angie jolted from the couch where she had fallen asleep when she heard the knock; she stood up and went to open it.

 

Emma couldn’t contain herself; she ran into her mother’s arms and wept.

 

“I met with Him mum; I met with Him,” she said in tears. “He is so awesome, powerful…, Oh Mum; I wish you could have met with him…”

 

“What!” Angie said, confused.

 

“Oh mum, everything wasn’t right until I met with him; His light filled my heart, this peace, I don’t understand it.”

 

Angie watched her daughter in tears, talking more about her encounter and without doubt; she knew her daughter had met with the Lord. She broke down in tears of Joy and held her so tight in her embrace. ‘The Lord has done a great thing, Bless His only name.’

 

She listened in tears as Emma went on about her encounter; she told her about the peace she felt in her heart despite all anger and fear she had been feeling all of her life, she wanted more of this and asked her mother to tell her more about the Lord she met.

 

 

 

*****

 

 

 

It’s been almost two months since Emma gave her life to Christ; the journey has been  a fruitful one although there were days when she had to struggle with her addictions and past but has learnt to depend more on God. Separating from her gang was the hardest she did but taking each step one at a time, she’s distanced herself from her old life.

 

She returned back to school and currently preparing for her GSCE exams and planned to go to college.

 

Angie has been overjoyed to see the changes in her daughter; she tried not to push her too hard but continued to encourage her in the way of the Lord and never for once stopped

praying for her. She realised from this experience that sometimes what we want might take a while to come to us but with persistence in prayer, God can do all things. Praying for our kids should be a vital part of our lives, no matter how far or deep they are in sin, God can still restore anyone and He will bring every situation to his glory.

 

Pray for the salvation of your children; pray they grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and saviour; that integrity and honesty be their virtue and their protection; they should be alert and self-controlled in all they do; they should grow to find the word of God more precious than much pure gold and sweeter than honey from the comb. Pray for deliverance from bad habit, pray for their salvation and dedication back to the presence of God. Don’t give up, God does answers prayers.

 

 

Our family is a Circle of Love and strength. With every birth and every union, the circle grows. Every joy shared adds more love. Every obstacle faced together makes the circle stronger. Edu.

 

 

Let your family and union be built on the solid love of God and surround your family in a Circle of Love. Be loved and continually be IN-love. God is love. – Abimbola CirclesOfLove

 

 

The End.

© Circlesoflove 2017

 

 

Photo credit: Guildposts

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Breaking Habits

Habits are life’s killers; they eat you slowly until it completely devours every part of you. A lot of us have struggled daily to break away from some form of habits in our lives; while others have given up ever breaking free from them.

 

Habits and addiction are not just the big names like sexual sins, alcohol and drugs in take. Habits could also be in form of anger or even lying.

 

Habits are routines of behavior that are repeated regularly, which tend to be difficult to give up. We all know the little and big things we are trying to break away from our lives; the addiction that has become a scorn on your flesh. We find do ourselves doing the very thing we do not want to do.

 

Let me quickly show you something I read from the bible. First, you have to know that every scripture in the bible is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 2 Timothy 3:16.

 

Paul said in Romans 7: 18:20. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

 

In order to break free from any form of addiction or habit; we have to break free from the flesh. The flesh has nothing good for us, except to be subjected under it. The Flesh tells us its okay to do that, ‘just a little wouldn’t hurt’, it reminds you of your past and the inability to live above that. It tells you ‘everyone is doing it, even so called born-again Christian are also struggling with you, so what makes you think you can live as perfect as you want to’. It’s tells you of your weaknesses and how difficult it is to break free.

 

You feel a war going on inside of you; even though you desire to do the right thing, to walk in obedience to God’s word; yet, there is constant disagreement in your body. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Romans 7:22-24.

 

Now Folks, the first sign of defeat is thinking you cannot break free from every habit or addiction in your life. If you are a born-again Christian, remember that, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:1-2.

 

Now, the question comes’ how do I break free from every habit and addiction in my life? The word of Romans 12 comes to mind: Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

 

Listen folks, your body is the temple of God and should not be subjected under sin. The other day when I was reading this verse, then it struck me; how do I present my body as a ‘living sacrifice’ to God? I know my body is the temple of God, but what does it mean to offer it to God as a sacrifice? Then, the Holy Spirit explained it to me this way. During the old days in the bible; the Israelites would always offer animal sacrifices to God in various form; to appreciate His goodness in their lives, for forgiveness of sins, for deliverance and so on. But yet, God expect us to offer our own bodies as sacrifices to him, and yet living.

 

Now for me to offer my body to God as a living sacrifice; I have to lay down my flesh, surrender my body, lay it all down before him; not just that, then ask in total surrender that his fire which is the Holy Spirit comes down to accept my body before the Lord.

 

Now please, bear with me here, I’m going somewhere. The fire of God is one, but with different functions: it consumes, it burns, it destroys, rekindles, refresh, repairs and can also be as tongues of fire as it did on the day of Pentecost.

 

When you lay your life as a living sacrifice before God; His fire will come down to consume every impurity, every habit, addiction or every marks that the enemy has placed upon your life.  The same fire will then rekindle, repair and restores your life back to the ordinary plan of God.

 

However, this is not just a time thing; that is why Romans 12: 2 says, ‘do not be conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transform by the renewing of your mind. You have to constantly stay in the presence of God; you have to daily remain on the alter of God. You cannot keep walking in the pattern of this world; behaving in an ungodly manner and expecting not to fall into sin, is only a deception of the enemy. You cannot still go back to the places that have led you to sin and wants to stay free from the addiction; you cannot take a sneak peak at those things or dial the numbers that you know led you to some pattern of lives you want to stay away from.

 

Also Leviticus 6: 13 says, ‘Fire shall be kept burning continually on the altar; it is not to go out. You have to constantly, continuously stay in the presence of God. The fire has to keep burning. Renew your mind daily with the word of God; study and dwell in the presence of God so that you can know his perfect Will for you. God told Moses in Leviticus 6: 8, that the burnt offering must remain on the altar; in other words, you have to remain in the presence of God, you have to always and still offer your body as a living sacrifice to him; not just today or for some hours, but every day of your life.

 

 

Remember, shall we continue in sin and allow grace to abound? By no means!

 

In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its evil desires. Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness. For sin shall no longer be your master, because you are not under the law, but under grace. Romans 6:11-14.

 

I pray for the grace and power to break free from every habits and addictions in our lives; the willingness to submit totally to God’s will.

© Circlesoflove 2017

 

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Happy Mothers Day

Happy Mothers Day to every beautiful woman out there. May your days be filled with joy and happiness.

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Insight 4u

confession-of-a-married-man

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The Guilt In Me

Annette screamed out as pain and anguish filled her; the excruciating pain in her heart is just too much bear. “Oh God….” She whimpered. “I did it all; I caused it….” She cried out. “I allowed all these to happen……, I put all these on myself….” She crouched to her knees in tears.

 

“I did not even protect her, I could not…….” She held her chest in pain.

 

She had just committed her fourth abortion amongst others. It’s been two days since she went through the horrific experience, but the darkness and bitterness in her heart were unbearable.

 

The image that comes to her each time she closes her eyes has eluded her from sleeping for days now. The voices in her head and flashing images have been tormenting her.

 

“I was so selfish, all I cared about is myself; I have destroyed lives, I have destroyed people all for the sake of my own gain; I have destroyed homes…….” her hands and knees trembling so fast that they could not hold her still. “God! What have I done to myself……., who am I?” she screamed out.

 

All her life has been one setback to another, living a reckless life; Annette has done so much abominable to her body; given her body in exchange for money and every other material thing; gone through abortion so many times, luring men out of their homes into her seductive bed. She’s turned women into single parents just because their men have been sold out to her and made children fatherless. All these have been done in total contempt to life.

 

Now, she felt her life was over, she sees all the evil she’s done right in front of her and all her sins and evil are all before her. The pain, hurt, agony, wickedness, selfishness; every evil she’s done are all labelled all over her. She trembled on the floor, shaking in fear; the guilt was unbearable; she knew what she has to do now.

 

She has to pay for her sins, the thick darkness all around her was overwhelming, an indication of her evil deeds. Then, she felt herself getting up from the floor and walking towards a long corridor; every step carried in shame and scorn. On her body were written all the wickedness and things she did to herself and others, she just couldn’t get away from them, no matter how she shook her body, they had become part of her. She could see them written plainly on her. That was it! The guilt became her torment.

 

Her eyes filled with tears; she had not always been like this, everything she did was not what she had imagined her life to be. She never thought she would sell her body all in the name of pleasure, enjoyment and money; she never once considered she would abort any baby in her life term, let alone several pregnancies. She never imagined what she would do to families after having the best parents in her life, those who loved her unconditionally and stayed together in love. She knew what love is and yet deprived some families of having this.

 

As she walked towards the door, she knew she has to pay for all these; her sins were all plain to her. Few meters away, she saw the door and written on it is, ‘Door of Condemnation, Guilt and Destruction’. She knew that door was meant for her, her sins have condemned her, her guilt was all over her and she is meant for destruction. Her eyes were fixed on the door as the tears streams down her face.

 

Just then, she saw a man standing not too far away from the door; at first, she tried to ignore him and still focus on the door but you just can’t ignore him. He had the most beautiful face she has never seen. His figure is like that of a man, from his waist up he looked like glowing metal, as if full of fire and from there down he looked like fire, and brilliant light surrounding him like the appearance of a rainbow in the clouds.  She stood still, unable to beyond his face. She felt breathless; again, her feet were failing her as they started to tremble, she leant against the wall at her right side as she shivered in fear.

 

The darkness all around her was fading, the illuminating light from the man was overcoming the whole place. She felt as if the whole place was shaking; she couldn’t understand how a presence of a one man could do all these. His light illuminated the whole place.

 

Suddenly, the whole place became calm and right in front of her was the man. He was filled with holiness and beauty beyond words.

 

“I have to go through that door…” she whimpered. “I can’t stand being here with you….” She cried, afraid to look at him.

 

“Why?” His voice was so gentle and calm.

 

Her head was still bowed. “Because I am wicked……, can’t you see me? I am destined to that door……” She was afraid to look up at him but the hollow in his hands caught her attention.

 

He noticed her intense gaze on his hands. “I did this for you…” He said to her.

 

“Me!” she gasped. “How? Why?”

 

“I paid the price for all your sins; for every sins, shame and condemnation, I paid the price so you wouldn’t have to go through that door…” He pointed to the door.

 

Annette shook her head vigorously.

 

“No, you don’t understand; I am a terrible person; I have done so much evil and no one can save me.”

 

He smiled softly at her. “I am that I am; I am the God of mercy, I have given my life for all your sins so you don’t have to live in condemnation. I will forgive your sins and give you a renewed, restored life, a life without blemish….”

 

“But my sins are many….” She interrupted.

 

He lowered himself to her position and almost became the same height as she is. Their eyes met and this time she didn’t take her face away. She was awestruck. His face was pure, filled with kindness, love and holiness; she saw the greatness in him, yet his humility and love went before him.

 

He is God and yet speaks to a mere person like her.

 

“I have already paid for them all….” He said in the most assuring voice. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son that whosoever believe in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

 

That verse was familiar to her, she’s heard so many born-again Christian quotes that to her several times but she’s only laughed at them but today held a great importance to her.

 

“I have paid the price Annette, I gave my life for you….All you have to do is confess and repent of your sins. I love you.”

 

“Me…” she whimpered.

 

“Yes, you!” he smiled at her.

 

The truth of his words pierced into her; she felt safe and secured in his presence, she knew only Him can save her from all her sins. She broke down in tears and begged for mercy, she cried for his forgiveness of all her sins, to wash away every iniquity away from her. She confessed every wrong she’s done and continued to weep at his feet.

 

He picked her up from the floor and used his garment to wipe the tears streaming down her face. Then, he brought her into the most beautiful embrace and held her there.

 

Annette felt such overwhelming love and peace in his embrace. She felt anew, like a new born baby. She couldn’t believe this feeling; her sense of condemnation and guilt were all gone. She was covered in mercy, in peace that is beyond any human understanding. She felt beautiful from within to her outside. She couldn’t believe how that could be. It was a feeling of purity. It was unbelievable considering all that she had done. She closed her eyes tightly and held so tight on him. She couldn’t even explain these feelings in plain words. She was touched to her soul. She wanted to stay right there in his presence and ever let him go. In fact, she wanted to go with him wherever he went. She just wanted Him close to her heart as long as she lived.

 

 

**************************

 

 

Is there anyone feeling this way this today; are you surrounded by your sins and condemn by them. You feel guilty by the things you’ve done; you think forgiveness and redemption are far away from you. No! You have condemned yourself long enough; there is no sin that is too big that the Lord cannot forgive. The past sins still hold you tight, the ones you cling unto, pulling you down towards the door of destruction.

 

It is time to do away with them, it is time to go to the throne of mercy and grace and ask for forgiveness. The enemy makes you feel so guilty and makes you think God can never forgive you; he reminds you of how many people you have hurt, many terrible things you have done, he tells you no forgiveness can come to you but that is a big lie.

 

If you confess and forsake your sin, He is able to forgive you. God sure doesn’t like the things you have done but he still loves you and wants you to come back to him. Stop condemning yourself, stop it! Go before your maker today and He will take the reproach away; He will forgive your sins and heal your heart; he will wash you from every impurity and give you a clean slate. Your sins, he will remember no more. He will take the guilt away.

 

God bless.

 

Written by Abimbola CirclesOfLove.

 

Read more from www.circlesoflove.co.uk

 

 

Picture Credit: VideoBlocks 

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Once Upon A Time, I wrote this…..

Thinking of one story….

………………………………………………

Amanda raced down to the parking lot of the hospital. She got into her car and sat still staring into the thin air. She opened her mouth to speak, but suddenly she had no breath; she gulped for air, but her lungs wouldn’t work.

Her skin was burning and sweats pouring down her body; her head roared like a fire. Then her limbs started to judder.

She was gasping for air. “Oh God…” Some air was getting through now, but not enough to speak. She was feeling nauseous and breathless. Her heart was pounding, seeming to crush her lungs.

She wanted to put her keys into the ignition but her hands were trembling so fast; she was sweating and fighting for more air. She was having a panic attack, but part of her just wanted to die right there. She felt she had no more reason to live.

“No God please…..” She cried out in pain; clutched her hands against her chest.

“Please Lord……,” she was flooded with tears. “I am sorry Lord, I am so sorry….”

Coming out Soon……..

Abimbola CirclesOfLove

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Happy Women’s Day

Happy Women’s Day

Imagine, I have been so busy to even realise it’s women’s day today.

God bless every woman out there.

Enjoy!

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Quiet me in Your Love

Good morning Folks. Are you at that point where things are not just as you want them to be? This has made you doubt the love of the Father.

Now listen carefully, God loves you this I know. He will not leave you or forsake you. You are not forgotten and He has you in His hands.

Zephaniah 3:17 The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

Did you hear that? The Lord will rejoice over you with gladness and will quiet you by His love.

Go out today believing that He loves you so very much.

Have a great week.

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Happy Valentines Day

AIMG_1018 IMG_1019
Circles of Love wishes you a wonderful Valentines Day Celebration.

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Hi There!

Hello Folks,

It’s been quite a while I posted here, and thought to give a big ‘SHOUT OUT’ to everyone out there.

I trust your week has been great and you’re looking forward to an exciting and wonderful weekend.

As you go about your weekend, do remember that the Lord will supply all of your needs from His glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. Phillipans 4:19.

He will guide you through every path and decision you are looking to make; His peace will surround you and His blessing all around you in Jesus name.

Have a beautiful weekend.

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Out of the mouth of babes was it proclaim……

I was at my daughter’s Christmas class presentation today, and during the singing and all, one of the children announced a quote saying, ‘Reindeer, Snow and Father Christmas is not what Christmas is all about; JESUS IS THE REASON FOR CHRISTMAS!
 
It was a profound statement that was proclaimed in the presence of more than a 100 parents, and pupils of that school. It was an open confession in this school that Jesus is the reason for Christmas – a child said that, and they all know it. “Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast thou established praise.” Psalm 8:2.
 
No amount of adverts on snow, decorations, Santa clause can undermine the reason for Christmas. Jesus is the reason for Christmas.
 
From generation to generation, His praise shall fill the earth. All people, all nation shall worship and sing of His Praise. Hosanna in the Highest. Glory be to God. For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace…..
 
Merry Christmas Folks.
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God Has Got You Covered

Happy New Month to You Folks.

This morning I was reading a passage from 1 Samuel 9, and something in there struck me. Please read on with me as I believe there is something for you.

22 Then Samuel brought Saul and his servant into the hall and seated them at the head of those who were invited—about thirty in number. 23 Samuel said to the cook, “Bring the piece of meat I gave you, the one I told you to lay aside.”

24 So the cook took up the thigh with what was on it and set it in front of Saul. Samuel said, “Here is what has been kept for you. Eat, because it was set aside for you for this occasion from the time I said, ‘I have invited guests.’” And Saul dined with Samuel that day. 1 Samuel 9: 22-24.     

Did you noticed that those invited were already seated in the hall, but Saul was brought from outside and was told to sit at the head of those who were already there? I pray that this month, the Lord will take you from wherever you are now, and place you at the head of the table. He will promote you and make you outstanding in Jesus name.

 

Then, Samuel told his servant to bring the meat he had given him to lay aside. Even before he got there, his own food had already been laid aside. He didn’t have to share with the rest of the people. He didn’t even have to wait for what is left over since his invitation was quite late from others. His own share was peculiar. It was specially kept for him.

Listen folks, it doesn’t matter that everyone were already seated there; even if they did started to eat, Saul’s portion of food was not theirs to eat. It doesn’t matter if you have been late in life in achieving certain things, your own portion has not been eaten; it’s not theirs to take. Your place has not been taken. Are you hearing what the Lord is saying to your heart today? He’s saying, I have got you covered. Your portion has been safely kept and it is yours alone to take. You may not even realise that opportunity still stand, that promotion still exist, that seat has not been taken, He is telling you today that the plan He has for your life cannot be stopped, cannot be taken and guess what, there is nothing the enemy can do about it because God Has Got You Covered.

It was so important that I had to read this verse this morning, the beginning of the month and I sense the Lord telling me that, this month He has set great things in place for me. Maybe you are at the point when you’re not sure you will make it. If those promises would still come to pass. God has called you to come sit at the head of the table, and He has set aside great benefits, great blessings just for you. It doesn’t matter if you were invited late, or you even arrived late. Guess what, the Lord has already set aside your own portion of goodies. Hallelujah.

 

In verse 24, Samuel said to Saul, ‘this is what has been kept for you, Eat, because it was set aside for you for this occasion……’ Did you get that? The Lord has a purpose for your life and His promises will not fail. Has He not said it, will He not bring it to pass? Yes He will. God Has Got You Covered!

 

© Circlesoflove 2016

 

Have a fulfilled month.

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Hauwa Final

“Chapter Twenty-One

David got back home that evening to discover Gloria had gone; he felt scattered and sadden by this news. He felt he was losing everything he loved and holds dearly to his heart. First it was his health, then his son, his supposed wife, and now, the only woman he hoped would love him and stay with him have suddenly walked away from his life. At first, he wanted to run after Gloria, to beg her to come back into his life, in fact, he had been willing to do anything she wanted just for her to come back but decided against it.

 

Hauwa on the other hand was also trying hard to get used to Gloria not being around. She had once or twice called for her in the house forgetting she was gone. However, she noticed how Mr. Williams had become; he no longer smiled in the house and looked gloomy almost everyday. Hauwa was becoming tired of this so she decided to take matters into her own hands; she had prayed for wisdom for days now and knew this was the right time to go forth.

 

 

David heard the faint knock on his door.

“Come in Hauwa.” He said knowing she was the only one who could have knocked.

Hauwa opened the door and smiled at him.

“Hello Uncle.” She greeted; David had stopped her from calling him ‘Oga’, he said she had become more like a family.

“Are you alright?” He asked, his face was still fixed on his iPad.

“Hmmm” She tried to get his attention. “I was wondering if you would like something to eat or drink?”

“No, I’m okay.” He replied without looking up.

“No, you are not okay uncle.” Hauwa blurted out.

He looked up at her.

Hauwa smiled. She knew one of these days, her big mouth might get her into trouble but she needed to get his attention.

“At last!” She grinned. “I got your attention.”  She went to his side.

“You sure did!”

“Alright Uncle, it’s time to get back up and take charge,” she started, “You have allowed this sadness for quite a long time and this is affecting you.”

“I’m fine Hauwa, there’s nothing wrong with me.”

“You can’t fool me uncle, besides, as your therapist which I am, I am responsible for your well being.”

David chuckled. Hauwa had always used to line to get him to do his exercise for many months.

“Okay uncle, on a more serious note; I know what happened between you and aunty Gloria.”

David looked away from her.

“I am aware of your feelings for her but ever since she left, you have withdrawn to this shell and living like a miserable man.”

He arched an eyebrow at her.

She sighed. “I am sorry.” She was quite for a few seconds. “I know this is a difficult time for you considering all you have been through; you feel you have lost everything you ever had, you feel disappointed and lost.” She caught his eyes and stared at it for a moment. “You feel let down by the one you once loved; First was Madam; you gave everything to her but she let you down and betrayed your love.”

Hauwa saw that he felt uncomfortable about this discussion, but she knew she was the only one who could talk to him.

“I know you feel so much hatred towards madam, and even as you tried to overcome the hatred in you by trying to love aunty Gloria but that was not enough to heal your heart. What am I saying?” Hauwa watched him become more uneasy about the conversation.

“You have to let go, you have to get to the root of your hatred and let go of your pain.” Hauwa saw the fire in his eyes as she spoke those words.

“Someone once said that, when you hold resentment towards another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Even though madam is no longer here but by reason of your anger and resentment towards her, there is still a link that binds you two together.

His eyes darkened ominously as he stared at her. “I am not bind in anyway to that wicked woman.”

“You are and forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free.”

“What!” He gasped in disbelief. “Did you get these from one of your school books? His face was taut.

“Actually, not from a school book but hear me out please, to forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was in fact you. Uncle, I know you understand what I mean but the only way to get your life back is to forgive anyone that has ever hurt you, you need to let go.” She looked into his eyes. “Even if Aunty Gloria had stayed, that wouldn’t have given you want you needed – Freedom. The freedom you desire can only be given by one person, God.” She knelt down by his side to look into his eyes.

David brushed his hands down his head. He stood up and walked towards the wall. He stared at the picture on the wall. It was an image of a toddler learning to walk.

Hauwa let the silence in for a few seconds but she continued. “I found out about this some months ago; I used to be very angry, I was sad and depressed and no amount of success or achievement could take that away from me. I needed something greater than feeling, something stronger to rescue me from myself and I found it.” Her face lilted up in Joy. “I found that out in Jesus, only He could have given the kind of peace and freedom I wanted and He did.” She smiled profoundly.

“I had hated everyone, I hated my parents or shall I say grandparents for giving me up at the first chance they got to live a better life. I hated what they did to me; I hated the man who took advantage of me, all these still goes back to my parents who gave me away. Then, I hated Madam and anyone that stood against me, in fact, I hated myself, I just couldn’t get free from the hatred in me until I found Jesus or shall I say, He found me. He gave me the kind of peace I could never comprehend; he gave me a new life, a renewed and cleansed life in Him and he gave me a purpose. He took away every anger and hatred in me and gave me love. God! Only if you can trust him Uncle, only if you let go of everything and give it all to him.” Her voice was broken. She swallowed hard and watched him go back to sit. He bowed his head into his hands.

Hauwa went to kneel beside him. “I know what you feel inside and God knows and understand everything; He knows your pain and knows where you are hurting and only Him can heal you.” Hauwa felt his pain. She knew he was hurting deep inside and he needed to let God in and heal him.

“Even after months of your recovery and madam gone, you are still living here in this basement; you are afraid of going forward, of letting go of the past. There is a passage in the bible that says, ‘the Lord has not given us the spirit of fear but of power, love and sound mind’, you need the peace of mind that comes with Christ, you need his love to take away every sadness, heartache, pain and hurt away from you; you need his love to cover you up so you can let go of those who hurt you, you need God uncle, you need Him.” Hauwa stayed quite there for several minutes;  she knew he was in deep thought so she carefully walked out of the room to leave him to his conviction. She had spoken the words to him and she knew the Holy Spirit was speaking to his heart, speaking the truth and comfort to him.

David sat there for several minutes, unaware of when Hauwa went out. He knew she was saying the truth. All the while, he’d held unto resentment and blamed his wife for everything that happened to him. Even before his accident, it had always been from one fight to another; he knew Lydia was not really in love with him when they got married but he had done the honourable thing by marrying her when she got pregnant. He was determined to love her and give her everything she wanted but all his effort to please her was to no avail. He felt such great hatred towards her. He blamed her for taking his son away from him and depriving him of the relationship he was entitled to.

But now, after living in so much resentment, he knew it was time to let go, even though he felt something for Gloria, he realized he was just using that as an excuse to deny the anger in his heart but the truth be told, he needed freedom and only God can give that.

As he thought about these things, he was also struggling with the tears threatening to flow out, which successfully fought its way out. He realized he had to let go, he had to speak to the one man who can help him. He sat there in tears for a while before he could speak.

“I surrender..” he cried out. He had wanted to say so much to God but the one word that kept coming to him was ‘Surrender’. That summed up the whole thing. He had to surrender everything to Him: his pain, his struggles, his hurt, the disappointment and betrayal, he just had to surrender all to Him. “Help me Lord,” he cried. “I surrender all to you.”

Chapter Twenty Two

It’s been almost a year since Gloria left the house. They did maintained a close relationship; calls and visits to her but Gloria had never visited the house since she left. Hauwa was glad Gloria was getting back on her feet and going for what she always wanted. She had a passion for fashion, although she had looked down on her potentials for several years but now going out for it. Over the past few months, she had opened a small office with the money she’d saved over the years and started up with some designs which is blossoming.

Hauwa is also working hard in her career, and achieving her dreams of helping victims to get back on their feet. Most importantly, her faith in Christ had been growing stronger and stronger.

Mr. Williams had insisted she stayed with him in the house since he had practically adopted her like a daughter; he is also fully back at work and growing stronger in faith.

Lydia had asked for a divorce a few months when she left the house; she stated that she needed to move on with her life and wanted to make it official. David found out she was already in a relationship since the left the house. During this time, the Lord had strengthened his heart with peace. Above all these, the most happiest moment of his life was his son, Edward who had come back to him, although not physically but just one day, he called from United States and wept and talked with him for almost an hour.

Edward explained that he’d joined the United State Army and was shipped to Sierra doing some peace making Programme and having seen so many deaths and destruction, his heart was filled with sadness. He needed a purpose of living; he needed God in His life. So during this deployment, he had surrendered his life to God and prayed earnestly to God to return him back home safe and sound. He also apologized to his father for all the neglect all these years, even went as far as apologizing on behalf of his mother.

After this, there was a renewed happiness in David; His heart was glad the Lord was working in Him and bringing his family back together.

 

 

One day, Hauwa was at home enjoying her day off when she heard the doorbell. She went to open the door and to her surprise, standing there was one man she had not expected to see, Edward.

Edward stood there dog smacked.

Hauwa stood there too staring at him. He wasn’t that sixteen years old boy anymore; he was a full grown man.

“Edward! She called out, to be sure she wasn’t dreaming.

“Hi!” Edward blushed.

“You are here!” She eyes were wide open. Too surprised to hide the expression on her face.

“Yes… I am.”

They both stood there for several seconds staring at each other.

“Oh sorry!” Hauwa apologised, realizing she was standing in his way. “Please come in.

Edward pulled his bags in, while Hauwa went ahead to carry the hand luggage which was still outside.

“Thank you.” He smiled shyly taking the bag from her.

She returned the smile and stood there. She wasn’t sure of what to say to him; the fact, she actually never remembered talking to him before he went away except the glass episode and some other, ‘Madam wants you but now, there was something she felt in her stomach, a tingling feeling that she desperately wanted to get out of there before she embarrassed herself.

She cleared her throat. “Uhm, your Dad is still at work, maybe I should call him? She went to pick up her phone from the table.

“Oh no, don’t worry about that, I actually wanted to surprise him, he doesn’t know I had planned to come home today. He is expecting me in two weeks time.”

“Oh ok.” Hauwa remembered David mentioned that he would be coming out but she had thought in many months to come, not now, and not even today. She couldn’t help to look at how fit he was. He was tall and broad-shouldered. His beautiful brown eyes fitted perfectly with his face. She felt the uneasiness in her stomach again. She took her face away quickly when he looked her way.

“Would you like something to drink, eat?”

“No, thank you.” He answered, taking off his blazer.

“Alright then, I will be in my room.” She walked quickly out of the living room.

 

Hauwa walked as fast as her feet could carry her; she couldn’t believe she was seeing Edward Williams let alone the feelings penetrating inside of her. She felt childish at the emotion bursting out of her. Never in her life had she felt so different with anyone.

She stayed in her room till late evening. Even then, she wouldn’t but wonder what he was doing. She wanted to ask him so many questions but had to restrain herself. The feelings bursting through her would make it impossible. It wasn’t until she heard David shout of joy that she came back downstairs. She was overwhelmed when she saw the way David hugged his son. They held each tightly for several minutes and wept, laughed, and then wept again. She felt the tears bunching in eyes too, but most importantly the joy bursting through her. She was grateful for the restoration God had given to the family. She wasn’t sure the two men noticed she was standing there as the wept together. She turned away quickly before the tears started to roll down her cheeks. It was indeed a beautiful day; the tears she knew were that of joy, and unending happiness. When she got back to her room, she needed to speak with someone about this overjoyed news so she called Gloria. As she had imagine, Gloria was overjoyed.

Chapter Twenty Three

Almost a week after this, Hauwa was in her room resting; she had only seen Edward briefly having been extremely busy at work. She’d been working over time since some of the therapists were off to some conference in another city.

Then she heard a faint knock on her door.

“Coming uncle,” She had said, thinking it was Mr. Williams.

“No, it’s me.” Edward said.

She stood up quickly, straightened her dress and went to the door.

“Edward!”She opened the door.

“Hi!” he smiled. “I’m sorry to bother you but was wondering if you would like some dinner.” He avoided looking straight in her eyes.

“Oh, is it time?” Hauwa asked looking at her wrist watch. “I’m Sorry, I was so carried away, didn’t realize it was time to prepare dinner. I will be down in a minute to make something.”

“Oh no, I don’t mean that dinner.” He ran his hand through his head.

Hauwa stared back at him.

“I know you’ve been working all week and have not had the chance to properly meet again, you know, I would like to properly thank you for all you’ve done for my dad.”

She smiled tenderly. “Oh no, you don’t have to Edward, I am grateful for all your dad has done for me too, he’s a wonderful man.” She smiled.

“I insist, please, let me take you out this evening if you don’t mind

Hauwa looked at her feet. It was an excuse to avoid looking into his eyes. The feelings was back again.

“Please…” H said again.

“Alright, dinner it is.” She smiled back.

“I will be downstairs when you are ready.” He smiled and walked away quickly.

Hauwa stood there watching as he went down the hall way. She wasn’t sure what to do after then; maybe, she should change her dress or go with the one she already had on. She went inside and sat for a few seconds. “C’mon get yourself together,” she whispered to herself. “It’s only dinner, nothing more.” She stood up to brush her hair and freshen up. Twenty minutes later, she was on her way downstairs to meet Edward.

Edward stood up immediately he saw her walking down the stairs, he smiled and then waited for her to get down before he went to the door.

“I don’t know what you would like to have.” He said.

Hauwa smiled.

“I have Chinese in mind but you can tell me anything or anywhere you would like to go.” He opened the passenger door for her.

“Thank you!” She said.

She waited for him to get into the driver seat before putting on her seatbelt. “Chinese will do.”

They drove in silence for the twenty minutes’ drive to the Chinese restaurant. After ordering some food, Edward excused himself to the bathroom. Hauwa saw that he was quite nervous, well, that would make both of them. He returned back almost immediately and took his seat.

“I’m so sorry.”

“It’s okay.” She nodded. She could tell he was trying to get comfortable.

“I have so many things to say to you,” he laughed faintly. “But as you can see, I feel so nervous, can you believe that?” he laughs at himself.

“That would make both of us.” Hauwa confessed to ease him.

He chuckled. “Oh!”

She smiled back shyly.

“Honestly Hauwa, I really want to appreciate you; thank you for all you did for my family.” He started to say, this time, in all seriousness.

“You don’t have to thank me Edward; anyone could have done the same thing I did.”

“No, no one did it, I didn’t do it, my mom didn’t but you did. To think that I gave you so much hard time in the past, you still looked beyond that to help my father.” he took his face away in regret. He swallowed hard. “I am so sorry Hauwa for all I did back then, I am very sorry; it was childish and stupid.”

“I thought we came here to eat.” Hauwa straightened and smiled tenderly at him. She was not about to come here and think of the past.

Edward rested his back on his seat.

“I don’t have anything against you Edward, you were just a young boy, you were exploring……” She teased him.

He covered his face with his hands as he laughed. “And she is funny too.”

They started to eat in silence again for few minutes.

“So tell me about Sierra, Uncle told me a little but would like to hear more if you don’t mind.” She took a sip of her drink.

“Hmm, Sierra.” Edward murmured.

Hauwa saw the sad expression on his face. “Oh, it’s okay if you don’t want to, I will understand.” She added.

 

 

“No, not all.” he tired to assure her. The event that took place there was something he would have to live with for the rest of his life; some good, some bad but in all, they are part of him now.

“You know, I only joined the army out of fun; my friends and I were playing around one day and enlisted our names, never thought they would even call. Out of the four of us, I was the only one they called.”

He flashed back to that fateful day when he got the letter he couldn’t refuse.

 

“At first I was glad for the adventure, didn’t take it serious until I was taken to the army camp and then started training and all. At this time, it hadn’t really dawn on me what I was into; I had the wrong mindset to something they took very important, something that involved lives.

A Few weeks later, we were shipped to Sierra for a peace making Programme, in fact when I heard peace making, I was kind of settled that would be easy not until we got there and everything changed.” His face filled with such heavy sadness.

“The rebels made life difficult; I saw so much death like never before, I had to touch them, carried some of the villagers to get help and had to hold some until their last breathe.” His hands were beginning to tremble which Hauwa noticed.

“Children were crying for their mothers and fathers, some nursing their parents’ wound; it was terrible, so terrible.”his eyes were moist as he spoke.

“That touched me and made me realize what a selfish and spoilt boy I had been; I treated my own father as if he was already dead and left him in his pain. God! I felt so ashamed, I was broken. Then we were attacked, some rebels started to shoot at us while we walk on the streets, I was losing friends, those that I have called my family.” He took his face away as the tears that flooded his eyes were about to fall.

Hauwa stretched her hands to hold his hands. She could feel the tears bunching in her own eyes as well. She wanted to tell him to stop as the emotion bursting through him was too heart-breaking for her to take.

 

“Rick was one of them; the first day we met at the camp, the first question he asked was if I was a Christian. During these sad times, I had cried and wept like a baby, I needed something stronger to help me out of all these; Rick had led me to Christ and opened my eyes to the truth staring at me all along. Unfortunately, he was shot days after by the rebels and I remembered what he said to me before then, he said, ‘when I die, I’m off to see my father, God in heaven.”

He held Hauwa’s hands tightly and tried so hard to stop the tears. He inhaled deeply and took his face away from her.

“Since then, the only prayer on my list was, ‘Lord, I just want to come home.’ He sighs. “I just want to see my father, to make things right with him; I wanted another chance to do the right thing.” He paused for a while looking into her eyes.

“And you did.” Hauwa spoke out calmly. “You came home to him, not only to your father but also to God; you did it Edward.” She wiped the tears rolling down her cheeks.

Edward let out a faint laugh. “Yes, God gave me another chance and I’m not about to waste any moment of that.” He looked kindly at her. “Maybe a chance with you, a chance to be with you too.”

Hauwa was taken aback. She straightened in her seat.

“I know it’s been a week and all but I can’t let this pass me; since the first day I met with you again, I haven’t stopped thinking about you. I feel something here.” He touched his chest. “that I haven’t felt before; I know it’s early for both of us but would like you to know and consider me.

He stopped and for several seconds that looks like forever, they both sat there staring into each others eyes.

“I…” She was tongue tied.

“You don’t have to make a decision now, I don’t want to rush you.” He looked softly at her. “But please, have a good think about it.”

She nodded and inhaled deeply. She’d never expected this, not even in a life’s time. Although she had been trying to avoid the tingling feelings in her since Edward returned from the state but never thought he was also interested in her. The same sixteen years old boy she threaten many years ago. They both picked their food and ate in silence.

 

“I thought we came here for Chinese?” Hauwa spoke out to ease up the tension between them. They both laughed considering how cold their food had become.

 

 

Chapter Twenty Four

 

It’s been almost two years since Edward came back from the States. Six months later, he proposed to Hauwa.

Hauwa had been transferred to a teaching hospital in the city of Ibadan, Oyo state. Preparation was being made for their wedding, everything was coming into place and the best part of it is that God is with her.

Epilogue

The day the Lord has made.

As Hauwa held her father’s hand walking down the aisle, her heart was filled with thanks for the great things the Lord has done for her. Everyone that she loved were all there to share the day with her.

 

Aunty Gloria wouldn’t miss the day for anything. The past few years had changed her, she looked very confident and beautiful as ever; her business has been blossoming so great and clients are now looking to work with her.

Mr. Emmanuel who led her to Christ was also there to share the joy with her. Her soon-to-be father-in-law, Mr. Williams couldn’t be happier to see this day- she was going to officially become his daughter-in-law. Ever since he gave his life to Christ, he was a changed man; he trusted more in God and was grateful for the second chance he got in life. Madam was also there with her new husband, in fact, Edward had insisted she attended the wedding which she had declined. She had thrown a big tharum when she realised who Edward was getting married into. She had it was over her dead body her son would marry an iliteriate maid. Edward had told her bluntly she was very well invited and if she refused to come, it would be her loss. She grudily came and had been shocked to the bone when he saw Hauwa. Infact, she had concluded that it wasn’t the same Hauwa who did worked for her.

 

Edward saw his beautiful bride coming towards him, and his heart was filled with joy. She was beautiful, stunning and captivating. They exchanged their vows and were joined together as husband and wife.

The ceremony was joyous, everyone was happy. At the reception. David went to her new daughter-in-law and hugged her tightly.

“Thank you.” He whispered to her.

Hauwa smiled. “You should thank God.” She said back to him. Before he could leave, she pulled him back. “do you remember those days I said I would help you get back on your feet and you would do something for me in return?” she asked.

David smiled. “I certainly do.”

“I think it’s time I ask for that one thing.” she whispered to him.

“Alright madam. What would you want? He teased.

“I’m only asking for one thing, just one thing.”

“Anything for you my dear.”

“Don’t give up on her.” She nudged over to Gloria’s direction. “My one request is that you dance with her.”

David broke into a beautiful smile. “With all pleasure.”

She left him there and walked over to her husband.

Edward held his new bride, Mrs. Hauwa Williams in his hands as they danced. Hauwa rested her head on his shoulder, closing her eyes, she moved graciously to the song. She opens her eyes and saw Mr. Williams walking up to Aunty Gloria.

 

 

 

“Hello.” David smiled at Gloria.

“Hi.”

David was stunned to see her. He couldn’t believe how beautiful she was.

“Would you like to dance?” David asked.

“Certainly.” She smiled taking his hands.

They joined the couple on the dance floor as they held hands together.

Hauwa couldn’t imagine what was going on in their minds but she knew definitely, this was just the beginning of great and beautiful things to come. As for her, she looked forward to great and exciting things to come. Looking back to those years, she knew definitely the Lord had been with her; he made all things beautiful and gave her beauty for every shame and scorn she had endured.

 

“The first time I saw you after so many years,” Edward spoke into her ears as they continued to dance. “Something inside of me changed forever. I found what I had been looking for; the magic and beautiful feeling I couldn’t have before.” he placed a kiss on her head. “You are God’s own miracle to me. Time and space ceased to be, our thread of love became one and all the pain, doubt and fear in the world cannot keep us apart.” He brought her face to his and covered it with a passionate kiss.

Right there, standing in the midst of all the people, they were lost in their own time and space; they felt like the only two standing there in the room.

Hauwa opened her eyes and looks straight into the most beautiful eyes staring back at her.

“I love you Edward” her voice shook with emotion. “I love you so much.”

Edward held her hands to his chest and smiled. “I love you too Hauwa.” Edward wanted to say more to her but the silence between them was far more better than anything he could say. He looked up and smiled, “Thank you Lord.” he whispered as he held his wife close to himself.

The End.

 

 

 

To my Readers If you have enjoyed reading this story, kindly leave your comments below. God bless you.

© Circlesoflove 2013

 

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Hauwa Part 3

Chapter Fourteen

Gloria was the first to sight madam come into the room. She took her hands from David immediately, and took a few steps away from him. Lydia stopped and took a long look at David and then back at Gloria. She had seen him move his head and hands without help.

Gloria had thought David would close his eyes, in pretence to be sleeping since he didn’t want madam to know of his recovery, but David was staring back at Madam; fury and hatred filled his eyes.

“What’s going on here?” Lydia asked, confused; she looked again from Gloria back to her husband. She knew something was definitely different in the room. David was  sitting straight up, and not flapping around his hands.

 

Suddenly, David started to cough. Gloria moved quickly to the other table to get him a drink.

“No.” He commanded.

Gloria looked back at him. She wasn’t sure what he meant until she saw him started to move.

He pulled himself up, and carefully got down from his bed. He inhaled deeply, took his walking aide and walked to the table. He knew Lydia’s eyes were wide opened. She was mystified, and he felt triumph at every reaction. He took his time to pour himself a cup of water, and then walked back to the couch by his bed and sat down.

 

“David.” She whimpered, walked slowly to his side.  “David.” She called out again; slowly brought her hands to his face. “Oh David.” She held him tightly in her embrace and started to cry.

“I knew you would come back to me,” she gulped a sob. “How did it happen, when?” How?” She looked at Gloria and then back to her husband and held him once again.

 

Gloria felt irritated at her the whole display. She couldn’t believe she was doing this; crying as if her husband had just come out of a coma but he’s been here all alone, lying helplessly in bed. For years, she’d never seen her spoken to him as if he was alive; he had been forgotten by the woman he loved and now, she’s wrapping herself all over him.

She swallowed the hard lump in her throat. Madam was still weeping and holding her husband in a  tight embrace. Gloria decided to turn away to leave the room when she saw the intense gaze of David on her. He was looking straight at her. She took her face away quickly and walked out of the room. She wanted to run, but her feet wouldn’t let her. She closed the door, and leaned against it. She tried desperately to reduce the swelling emotion in her chest. She was breathing heavily; she held her hands against her chest, and closed her eyes.  The feelings were there again; the ones that occasionally crept on her for a while now, but this time around, she had no control over it. It had a strong grip on her, and overwhelming her very soul.

 

She felt her heart pulling her back inside but she fought against it as tears threatened to flow out of her eyes. She felt something in her heart she’d never felt before; a raging emotion that took her whole body fiercely. His words kept ringing in her ears, I’m in love with you’. She felt her heart racing, and a strong desire to be with him. Suddenly, she realised what she was doing; what she was feeling right there did not feel right. Before she would tear her heart out there with the anger penetrating her, she walked quickly to her room; opened the door and found Hauwa pacing in the room.

 

Chapter Fifteen

“Aunty, what happened?” Hauwa asked fearfully, going to sit by her side.

Gloria looked into the thin air aimlessly.

“What happened?” Hauwa asked again.

“Nothing! Nothing happened.” Gloria snapped.

“What!” Hauwa gasped, confused. She had seen madam go into the room and the way Gloria came in now reaffirmed that something went wrong.

Gloria took her face away, trying to hide the emotion in her. Her plan was just to come in and drench her bed in tears, the unknown pain penetrating her was beyond words; she felt the sadness all over.

“I don’t understand.” She heard Hauwa’s voice.

“She knows.”

“What do you mean?”

“I don’t know Hauwa!” She snapped again, which made Hauwa shudder.

Hauwa stared in disbelief; she couldn’t understand what was going on.  “Is everything okay?”

Gloria looked up to her and then, the tears started to pour down her cheeks. Over the years, she had taken Hauwa like a sister and a friend, but carefully guarded her personal life away from their relationship. She had so many things she wished she could tell someone; just to listen to her. Now, she just want to cry herself out.

“Aunty, what’s wrong?” Hauwa asked again. She couldn’t bear to see her like this.

“I don’t know.” Gloria said in tears. “I really don’t know.” She wiped the tears from her cheeks, but they continued to pour down. “I’m feeling something I shouldn’t feel, something I have no right to think or even feel..,” She let her eyes settle on Hauwa for a moment, and saw she couldn’t understand what she was saying. “I feel something I shouldn’t feel, right here in my heart.” She placed her hands on her chest. “Is it wrong to feel this way, should I be feeling like this?” She saw more confusion on Hauwa’s face.

“I don’t understand aunty.” Hauwa was disconcerted.

“He said he loved me.” She looked straight into Hauwa’s eyes, stood up and walked towards the window. “He’s in love with me.” She whispered to herself.

“Who?” She asked.

“David…. Sorry, I mean Mr. Williams.”

Hauwa tried to hold back her gasp but did not quite succeed.

“Why would he say such a thing to me, why did he have to say it?” Gloria said to herself. “He can’t love me, he shouldn’t love me; I feel something I should not be feeling right here. What is wrong with me?” She shouted out.

She started to pace around the room. “This is not fair; you shouldn’t want something that you can’t have, you can’t just take something that does not belong to you, you just can’t. it doesn’t make any sense; he can’t have me so why would he tell me that he loves me when he knows damn right that he just cannot have me?” She kept rumbling her words together.

Hauwa went after her, and stood by her side. “Aunty, don’t do this to yourself.”

“He loves me Hauwa, Why would he say that, why?” She looked up in tears.

“What am I going to do?” She looked at Hauwa for answers.

She gently put her hand on her shoulder. “Don’t be too hard on yourself.” She said in a soothing voice; trying so hard to find the perfect words.

“But I cannot love him, I cannot!” Gloria interrupted.

“I know Aunty and I’m sure you will know what to do about this; you have to pray to God for wisdom. He will show you the way.”  Hauwa said the only thing that came to mind.

Gloria looked at her confused. The fact that Hauwa mentioned God in her conversation surprised her.

Hauwa noticed the surprise look on Gloria’s face. “Don’t be surprised Aunty, I gave my life to God today, I accepted the truth; Jesus is the truth.” She smiled profoundly.

“What!” Gloria gasped.

“Mr. Emmanuel said something to me today; he opened my eyes to some truth and he prayed with me Aunty; everything is clearer now, I have a kind of peace that I cannot comprehend. I’m still trying to understand it.”

Gloria was fascinated as Hauwa went on about her encounter; she found her trying to explain deeply what she feels inside but couldn’t find the right word for it.

“My God!” Gloria laughed, almost in tears. She had spoken to Hauwa about God for many years, but she had always walked away. She always said she didn’t need God or any kind of God in her life.

“That’s great Hauwa!” She pulled her into her embrace. “I am so happy for you, praise God!” She smiled, but only lasted briefly. “I can’t believe what example of being a Christian I have shown today, God! I feel so ashamed.” She bowed her head in shame.

Hauwa carefully lifted her head up to look into her eyes. “I’ve only been a Christian for a few hours, but I still know we are all humans aunty; I really can’t tell you what to do about this but I pray God will guide you through your decision. One thing I have learnt today is the peace that comes with knowing God and I know you will have that peace when you make your decision.” She looked into her eyes in sympathy and assurance.

Gloria smiled and pulled her into her embrace again; she was grateful for what she said and also happy for her salvation.

 

The remaining hours of the day went so quickly; Gloria was still struggling with her thought. All her life, she’d never had anyone say those words to her. Her son was as a result of a reckless life as a teenager and since then, she’d withdrawn to herself while she concentrated on making a good living for her son and improve his health until his death. Love and marriage were two things she never explored, but these past few months, something had changed. First, it was the way David started to look at her, like looking right into her.

Other times, she had caught his intense gaze on her. It was the touch of his skin on her body when she held him or helped him with his workout. Then, she began to look forward to seeing him every morning and hear him improve on his speech. These things opened up something in her, a feeling she had securely hidden is trying to overpower her. But for him to openly say it to her face that he loved her was the height of it. She knew somewhere in her heart that she had began an unhealthy feeling towards him but never could think of having another woman’s husband all in the name of love. She believed there should be boundaries to such feelings and not even explore that area. She realized that the anger she felt at first was as a result of jealous, but now, she knew what to do about all these and prayed for strength from the Lord to do the right thing.

 

 

Chapter Sixteen

The next morning, Gloria avoided seeing David; she had intentionally sent Hauwa with his breakfast to his room.

Shortly after, Hauwa came back into the Kitchen.

“He asked me to call you.” Hauwa announced as she entered. She could also feel the tension when she went into his room, but pretended she knew nothing of it.

She looked back at Hauwa and dried her hands off the dishes she was washing. After all, he was still her boss and she knew she couldn’t avoid him forever; she took a last look at Hauwa who nodded at her and then walked out of the kitchen.

She inhaled as she stood right at his door, she knocked and went in; to her surprise, she found madam in the room. Gloria wasn’t sure if she had slept there, but seeing her in his room this early after so many years was quite shocking.

“Good morning sir.” Gloria greeted David. “Good morning ma.” She said to madam.

Madam flashed an angry look at her. “Yes, what are you doing here?” Madam asked angrily.

Gloria couldn’t understand her anger but again, she knew madam was always  yelling and shouting at everyone, especially when she felt agitated or tensed up about something.

“I sent for her.” David said.

Madam looked at him, and quickly resolved the angry look on her face.

David smiled softly at her. “I was hoping we could start our work-out early today.” He said, looking at Gloria.

“Well, I can do that!” Madam spoke out, going to his side. “I can help you with your exercise while Gloria can help pack your things upstairs to our room.” She smiled at him, and walked to the chest drawers.

“What room?” David asked angrily.

“Our room of course.”

“I am in my room, where I belong, remember?” He straightened in his bed. “And as for helping with the exercise, I can manage with Gloria.” He countered.

“What!” Madam gasped, looking over to Gloria again with an angry look.

“After all, I have been managing without you for years now.” He said with his face fixed on Gloria.

Gloria was becoming uneasy about their conversation; she knew they both have issues they needed to sort out but was not about to be caught in the middle of it all. She noticed David spoke more fluently when he was angry as his stammering is lesser now.

“I can teach madam what to do sir.” She voiced out quickly to ease the tension in the room.

Madam and David looked at her direction.

“I can teach her what to do and all the routine.” She reaffirmed.

“No!” David snapped.

“But….” Madam was trying to say something.

“Lydia, what do you expect? That you can just walk back into my life and then, we start from where we left off, is it? He chuckled in disgust.

“I have been here all along David; I have been here with you.” Lydia cried brokenly.

He chuckled again. “Where?”He was amused at her words and then flashed the angry look at her again.

“I have been working so hard for this family, to put food on the table and to take care of our son, I had to make sure he has the life you desired for him and you had a business, remember? I had to take charge and work to make sure things does not fall.” She blinked back the tears.

“Then, go back to the business and other things you have to do, what exactly are you doing here?” David shouted at her.

“I am your wife David!” Lydia shouted in streams of tears pouring down her face.

Gloria stood there dumbfounded; the tension and anger in the room was beyond her so carefully, she walked towards the door and left the room. She wanted to keep walking but instead, she stood by the door to hear their conversation. She did never seen David talk in such manner, and for a second, she felt pity for madam.

 

**********

David could not believe Lydia even had the gut to defend herself. He couldn’t believe the words coming out of her mouth. She felt justified, and that infuriated him the more.

“Then where have you been for more than ten years that I have been lying here?” He shouted back at her, his eyes were moist.

“I have been right here with you, I have been taking care of our son, of our lives; I had to stand up and do something.” She continued in tears.

“Don’t you give me that. God!” He raged out. “Never would I have believed all you did Lydia, never; I loved you so much, I gave you everything and at the first opportunity you had to dump me, you took it and walked away from my life.” He said with pain in his voice.

“I did not leave you David, I did not.” She cried out. “I was confused; I didn’t know what to do about you; seeing you lying there broke my heart; please David,” she held his hands but he jerked away from her. “I love you so much and would never walk away from you.”She said in streams of tears.

“Stop it Lydia, stop it! What do you take me for? You left me to someone else to clean up after me, to take up your responsibility?” He cried out. “You know what, you can go back to whatever you have been doing, go back there.” He shouted. “I don’t need you here with me, go, go now.”He screamed out in pain with tears pouring down his face.

 

The anger in his voice jolted Gloria as she leaned against the door; quickly she took to her heels knowing madam would come out any time from now.

 

Chapter Seventeen

Hauwa has been home for a week now after taking a break from the hospital; things have been so tensed in the house lately. Madam being so sad, as her husband withdrew totally from her. She stayed in her room all through the day drenching her pillow with tears. Hauwa couldn’t understand all of these, but couldn’t imagine that a wife who abandoned her husband for so long especially when he needed her help and then comes back after so many years of walking away to say she is still in love with him. The irony of this is that, Mr. Williams cared less; he continued his daily activities without asking after her or even bothered to know how she was doing. After madam found out about his recovery, he’d been determined to work twice harder than before; a kind of anger and resolution in him to get better quickly was upon him.

 

Hauwa was on her way out to the market one day; opening the front gate, she found a familiar face waiting by a car. She was taken aback to see her eldest brother, Idris, standing there. She ran to him quickly and hugged him. He later related the whole story to her.

He had gone home a few months ago to see their parent after so many years and then found out his father had passed away few months before then due to illness. He was sad and ashamed of himself for leaving his family for that long. He had left home with the intention of working hard to provide for his family but stayed too long and forgot about them. He later found courage to go home and face up to his responsibility but realized it was rather late as his father had suffered a terrible sickness and due to lack of funds had led to his death.

After inquiring about Hauwa; he was told mallam Abu had come to take her away after finding a job for her in Lagos and promised to pay them her monthly salary which they never received. Mallam Abu had suddenly disappeared and didn’t come back to Nassarawa. Idris was so furious when he learnt about this especially the fact that Hauwa happened to be his biological daughter which was unknown to her. He was given a wife years ago who had died during child birth, so his parents took Hauwa as their own daughter while he went away to work and promised to return. He had only gone home twice after but never introduced himself as her real father.

Now, much older and realizing how he forgot his family and his responsibilities; he discovered his daughter was off to some job in Lagos and had not returned home since then. He came to Lagos in search for Mallam Abu and few weeks later, he got hold of him and after he brutally gave him the beating of his life for scamming his parents, Mallam Abu gave up her address.

Hauwa was shocked to hear all these; she never knew for once that her eldest brother is her real father, of which difference it wouldn’t have made to her then. All her life, she’d learnt to find her own way and not depend on anyone; altogether, she wasn’t sure what this new revelation will make for her. Also, the death of a man she had known to be her father brought sadness to her; he had been a good man to her even though he had no money to take care of her as he would have loved to, but he was still her father.

She sat there in his car and spoke at length with him. Hauwa had planned to go home a year after she got to Lagos but the fear of being married off as they did her elder sisters scared her. Idris asked for her forgiveness and was ready to take her home right there, but she refused and promised to come see them all soon.

 

Chapter Eighteen

It’s been few weeks since the whole episode with David and Lydia; Gloria tried as much as possible to avoid the couple; after almost a week of madam crying her eyes out and her husband was not yielding to her, she went back to her old ways; goes out in the morning and comes home late at night. Hauwa had been so nice working with him and also checking up on him when necessary.

One day, she was washing dishes in the kitchen when she saw David walked in.

“What!” she gasped in disbelief, since this was the first time David would climb the basement stairs to come upstairs.

“Hi!” David said, shyly impressed by his work-out. “I thought since you refused to come to me, I could as well come to you.” He smiled.

Gloria forced a smile, impressed by his work-out. “You need to come out more often.” She dried her wet hands on a towel. David walked straight to her and stood right in front of her staring in to her eyes.

“I know you are avoiding me Gloria, and that hurts.”

Gloria felt her heart pounding so fast, the feeling was intense; she moved away from him to occupy her hands with the dishes, putting them away.

“I have missed you Gloria, I missed you coming to my room.” He walked towards the fridge and helped himself with a glass of water.

Gloria found something else to do, trying to hide her trembling hands.

“Gloria!” He called out which brought her to a halt. “Look at me please.”

Gloria turned to him.

“I love you Gloria, I am in love with you; every day for these past few years, I have always waited anxiously to see you early in the morning. I tried ignoring the feelings for a while but I just can’t anymore…”

Gloria looked into his eyes for a moment and took a step closer to him.

“It’s only natural what you feel for me considering how many years I have been helping out.” Gloria said softly.

“I know what I feel right here.” David placed his hands on his chest.

“Your heart belongs to someone else David.” She paused for a moment.

“You and I know there’s nothing there for me with her; we both know this.” He allowed his words settle on her.

“She is still your wife and part of you still loves her.” She retorted.

“There is no more love between us; our love died a long time ago. What is left of us are hurt, pain and betrayal.” He said, dejected.

Gloria could see he was talking straight from his heart; she sees a man hurting, a man seeking for love in his life, someone to love and take him as he is.

“You know, my mom told me a long time ago that love never dies a natural death; it dies because we don’t know how to replenish it. It dies of hurt, errors and betrayal; the fact that you don’t feel something in here,” She placed her hands gently on his chest. “doesn’t mean it’s not there.”

“Maybe your mum is wrong this time.” David said as he held her hands on his chest. “Maybe our love never existed to start with, maybe there’s nothing to water and it’s damaged beyond repair.” He countered.

“Or maybe you just don’t want to fight for it.” She said, and walked out of the kitchen.

 

Gloria knew the fight going on in heart and was not about to be left alone with him there. She knew what her flesh wanted; another minute alone with him might lead to something she would regret. Also, she understood the couple do have issues to sort out and she was not about to be a reason why David would not fight for his marriage. She just wanted him to think about things without putting her in the equation. There must have been something he loved about his wife when he first met her and his willingness to go back to the beginning of their love and relationship might help to revive things.

 

Chapter Nineteen

 

Gloria had gone to the living room with an intention of cleaning up when the Programme on the TV caught her attention: it was an annual African fashion exhibit where designers would show off their designs. She was intrigued by every outfit and their design since she also had a passion for African styles. The fear of being rejected had held her back all this while to fulfil her long term dream and hopes. One of these days, she was hoping to work through her fear.

“So you think you can do better than me?”Lydia said, standing behind her.

The sound of her voice startled Gloria; she had not seen or heard her come in.

“Madam!”

“Don’t you dare madam me! We both know what you are up to.” She looked angrily at her.

Gloria was taken by surprise, she was unsure of what she was getting at.

“I took you into my house, I gave you a job when you needed it most and you stabbed me in the back.” She shouted at her.

“I beg your pardon!” Gloria snapped at her. “I have served you well; did everything you asked of me and will not stand here for you to lure insults at me.” She looked her straight in the eyes.  “I was the one, who took care of your business, you should be grateful.”

Lydia gasped. She had been taken by surprise at the way she spoke back at her. “I never knew you had it inside of you.” She jeered at her. “Why don’t you go ahead and take what is left of him.”

Gloria felt like shaking her up until she was back to her senses. “You should be grateful you have a man like him.” She said angrily at her.

“Is that why you want him for yourself?”

Gloria was fuming in anger, and trying so hard to control herself.. “I don’t want your husband. “God! “You should go back and beg him for all you did. You left him, do you understand how that hurts?” She searched to see some form of remorse in her eyes but it was blank of any. “You need to ask your husband for forgiveness.”

“That’s where you are mistaken; I don’t beg. If he cannot accept me for who I am and appreciate all that I have done for him, then he’s not worth it.”

“Exactly what have you done?” Gloria asked in anger; repulsed by her attitude.

“I had a son for him, I gave him the best part of my life while he was wasting away in bed, and I took up the responsibility of taking care of his son all by myself.” She shouted back.

“The same son you took away from him; the same son you deprived him of and made him look like a curse to be seen with him?

“I will not have you insult me in my home!” Lydia shouted.

She scoffed. “Insult you.” She straightened. “I would not waste my breath on that. If indeed you really want a home, then, I suggest you start making it a one.” Gloria countered.

“Fine! You want to have him; you can have all of him.” She stood there for a few seconds and, then, walked away.

Shortly after, she was back with her bags pulling it through the living room. Gloria stood there bewildered; she watched as she went back for more and more bags. t first, she wasn’t sure if she was leaving for her usual trips or actually leaving the house. She watched as she went back in to carry her handbag but instead of walking towards the door, she came up to her.

“Here, you can give it to him when he returns.” She handed her a letter and walked out of the hourse.

Gloria shocked and confused; this is the same woman who had cried for joy when she found out about his recovery. She sat there for several minutes unable to move. Mr. Williams had gone to his doctor for check-up but the fear of her delivering this letter scared her. She waited there until she heard the door open. There, Hauwa and David walked in. Gloria stood up quickly.

“Hello Aunty.”

“Is everything alright?” It was David who asked.

Gloria took the letter from the table, and gave it to him.

“What is this?” The tension on Gloria’s face made him open the letter.

Dear David,

I have tried to stay hoping things will change but it is evident that there’s nothing between us and staying in this house is of no use to you. I have to leave David; I have to leave to find myself. Please forgive me.

Lydia.

 

 

David dropped the letter on the floor and walked quietly to his room without uttering any word. His heart was heavy and dejected; he had thought he would feel a kind of happiness knowing Lydia was no longer in his life, but far from it; all he felt was pure emptiness. A feeling he couldn’t explain overwhelmed him. He had thought he lost everything during his illness but even after his recovery, he was  losing it all over again. The woman he is in love with would not accept him into her life, and the one he once loved has just walked away from his life. He felt alone.

Chapter Twenty

Hauwa was in the laundry room doing some washing when Gloria walked in. She stood at the door for several minutes watching Hauwa. For days, she’d been trying to come to terms with her decision, but telling Hauwa was the most she dreaded. She had decided she needed to leave; She couldn’t stay any longer in the house with the feelings penetrating her spin, and David believing that she was the right woman for him. She decided it was time she moved on.

“I am leaving.” Gloria spoke out.

Hauwa jolted. “What.”

“I am leaving Hauwa, I’m going away.” She tried to fight the tears bunching in her eyes.

“Going where?” She was still standing where she was; confused.

Gloria walked up to her, took her hands, “I have to go Hauwa,” tears poured down her cheeks. “This passion, feeling, emotion or whatever it is called is killing me inside; I have fought and fought so hard to get over it but I can’t. I can’t Hauwa.” She swallowed hard, and blinked back tears, “I love him but I can’t be with him.” Her face filled with sadness.

Just then, Hauwa pulled her into her embrace.

“Oh Aunty.” She held her tightly.

She tried to fight the tears. “It’s going to be okay aunty; everything is going to be okay. Hauwa softly patted her back.

“I can’t bear to see him in pain and I can’t give him what he wants; I wish I could but I can’t” She continued in tears. “Something in my heart is holding me back.” She wiped off the tears and looked into Hauwa’s eyes.

Hauwa wept weepily. She wanted to say something but her lips trembled. Over the years, Gloria had been the closet she has to a family. She couldn’t imagine what her life would had been with her, and losing her now is like a sharp pain to the heart.

“You do understand that I have to leave, I have to find my own way.” She gently wiped the tears away from Hauwa’s eyes. Then, she smiled softly. “Oh Hauwa, you have been such a blessing to me right from the very day you walked into this house; you changed me; you made me believe in myself with your relentless attitude.” She laughed. “You had a purpose, a vision and nothing stood in the way of achieving that; you wanted to do something you loved and against all odds, you did it, you did it girl and I am so proud of you.”

Her face lilted up. “Aunty, you are a God-sent to me; you gave me a reason to go on. Can you remember the first thing you said to me when I stepped into this house? Don’t be afraid, she said.”

“I didn’t need to say that seeing how you pointed a broken glass at Edward when he trespassed, you were fearless.” She busted into laughter even with the tears in her eyes. Hauwa joined her in laughter.

Then, they stopped and stayed quiet for a while.

“Aunty, you know, when you are troubled about decisions in your heart, the best thing to do is to stay back in His presence,” She took her hands and looked straight into her eyes. “He will teach you and direct you in the path to go, hold on tight Aunty, just hold on. Then, she hugged her tightly.

Twenty minutes later, Gloria was gone. The only woman who took her in at the lowest point in her life; the same woman who fought for her and made her believe in herself was gone. A Part of her felt sad at this but another part knew Gloria had to go to find herself, to fulfil her own dreams. She had worked hard all her life, lived through pain and hurt of loosing her only child but now is the time to go forth and be happy. A happiness that only God could give her .

Hauwa inhaled deeply; instead of going back to her washing, she sat there on the steps flashing back to old times with Aunty Gloria. She was her angel.

To be continued.

 

 

 

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

 

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Grace

It’s all about Grace…..

Grace is the full and free forgiveness of every sin, without God demanding or expecting anything from the one so forgiven. Grace is entirely the work of God, unprompted by man and undeserved by man.

Ephesians 2; ‘For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gifts of God; not as a result of works that no one should boast.’

Enjoy the rest of the day folks.

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Hauwa

 

Chapter One

Hauwa stood before her new mistress, Madam Lydia, whose eyes were staring in scrutiny all over her. She asked Hauwa to open her mouth to see her teeth, then to put her hands forward to inspect her fingers; she checked to see beneath her hair to be sure she has no head lice scrawling in there. In fact, Hauwa was taken aback when she finally asked her to take off the gown she was wearing to inspect her body.

She looked hard at her when Hauwa hesitated, and told her she didn’t want any form of rashes brought into her house.

Hauwa noticed her young son, almost about her own age who was working on his laptop, but having heard his mother asked her to take off her clothing, he turned to her direction. Madam was so engrossed in inspecting every part of her that she failed to notice the intense gaze of her teenage son staring at her. Hauwa used her tiny hands to cover up her chest since she wasn’t wearing any bra to cover that up.

Growing up in a very poor family didn’t provide her with daily necessities. Her only possessions were five long dresses passed down from her elder sisters and three briefs which were also passed down.

At the age of fifteen, her parents had pulled her out of their local secondary school in a remote village in Nassarawa, a northern state in Nigeria to start work as a maid in Lagos. In fact, her parents were so thrilled when Mallam Abu, the local trade man returned from Lagos, and announced he found a job for their daughter. They were all excited at this offer, knowing it would bring more income for them every month.

Hauwa is the last of eight children, two boys and six girls; three of her elder sisters have been given in marriage after having to work as a maid for several years. Her elder brothers were also away from home, working in one of the states in Nigeria. Hauwa had no idea where they are as they often moved from one place to another to make ends meet. Hauwa had hoped to finish secondary school and proceed to university with or without her parents help or approval but the future looks unseemly now.

“I know girls like you are always very dirty.” She heard Madams voice but the shame of having to take off her clothing held her from speaking.

Hauwa wanted to cry but fought the tears about to drop from her eyes. Her face was fixed on the boy staring at her and she didn’t want to give him the satisfaction of seeing her in tears. After their faces met, he immediately took his face away.

“Why are you staring at my son?” Madam slapped her back which made her jolt.

“That is your master too; you don’t look him in the eye, OK!” She snapped.

“Yes Madam.” Hauwa replied with her eyes moist. At last, she had given him the satisfaction of seeing how weak she was.

“Get dress.” Madam ordered. “Gloria!” she called out.

Within seconds, a lady walked hastily into the living room. She was dressed in a blue and white uniform.

“Yes Madam.” Gloria stood, straightened with her hands behind her, avoiding looking into Madam’s eyes.

“This is Hauwa; she’s the new maid I talked to you about. I want you to show her what she needs to do and tell her all the rules.”

“Yes Madam.” Gloria said.

“I’m going out now, take care of the house.” she took her car keys and her bag, walking towards the door.

“Yes Madam.”

“C’mon Edward,” Madam called her son. “We have to leave now if we want to get your games.”

Edward stood quickly, trying to avoid looking at Hauwa. He followed his mother behind and closed the door.

Hauwa pulled the bag with her only possession tightly to her chest

“What is your name?” Gloria smiled at her to ease the fear in her.

“Hauwa.” She trembled.

“Ok Hauwa; my name is Gloria and you will be helping me in the house.” she looked with pity on the young girl.

“Ok madam.” Hauwa replied quickly, almost afraid of her.

“Don’t be afraid Hauwa, Gloria brought her face upward. I am not the madam, okay.” She said softly.

Hauwa nodded, unable to utter any word.

“Come; let me show you to your room.” Gloria said, leading the way.

She led her to the room at the end of the long corridor. It was a medium size room with two beds facing each other. It had a ceiling fan and a wide window for easy ventilation. There was nothing too special about the room, but the best Hauwa had even seen.

“This is your bed and this is mine.” She pointed to the beds. Hauwa was surprised to have a bed all to herself. After all, all her life, she’d had to sleep on the corridor leading to the kitchen, but now in an actual room, and a bed to herself was a great deal to her. And the room has a door; seeing that sealed the excitement in her.

“Have you eaten?” Gloria asked.

“No.” She replied.

“Alright then, let’s start with feeding you and then, all other things will follow.” Gloria smiled at her.

Her smile was soothing and soft. She led her to the kitchen and poured a plate of rice for her with stew and even gave her a piece of meat. Hauwa was overwhelmed with this. She couldn’t remember the last time she ate meat, probably during the Muslim festival where their king had shared ram to every member of the community.

Hours later, Madam came back but Hauwa didn’t have to attend to her. Gloria gave her easy chores to pass the rest of the day with. At night, when everyone was off to bed, Gloria asked her to go to bed while she waited few more hours before she joined her in the room. The bed was very soft and comfortable and it didn’t take long before she slept off.

Chapter Two

It’s the dream; Mallam Abu grabbed her tiny body and threw her on his bed. She grunted, pushed and scratched him but he was too strong for her. She had been in Lagos for almost three days, and Mallam Abu still had not taken her to the place of work he promised. He took her straight to his small apartment at Isolo, some part of Lagos state she had not heard of. During the night when Hauwa laid one of her wrappers on the floor to sleep, he had woken her up to come join him on his bed. Hauwa bluntly refused which was when he carried her forcefully from the floor. When she began to scream, he tied a piece of cloth on her mouth. He pushed her on his bed and raped her.

“Wake up Hauwa.” Gloria gently tapped her.

“Please Mallam, hi kada wannan (don’t do this). She said in tears. Kana mini ciwo (You are hurting me).

“Wake up.” Gloria called louder.

Immediately, she stood up, pulling her wrapper over her body. She struggled to steady her breathing to reduce the swelling emotion in her chest.

“Please, don’t let him touch me again.” She said in tears, hysterical.

“Who? Gloria asked, confused, looking around her.

“Mallam Abu.” She answered, fearfully.

“Oh dear, you’ve been dreaming; there’s no one here.” She tried to assure her.

Hauwa took a moment to look at her surroundings and sure, Gloria was right, there wasn’t anyone here, it was just a dream.

Gloria looked at her in pity; what could have happened to this young girl to make her scream in her sleep? She asked her to go back to bed and her heart ached for Hauwa and also for herself. She knew there was something about this young girl and only time would reveal that.

Chapter Three

It’s been several months since Hauwa had been working with Madam; she’s come to understand that people like madam are ruthless, cares for no one except for herself and her son was no exception. He behaved like he owned the whole world. Madam rarely stayed home; always out on one occasion or shopping, but Hauwa was glad about that, at least, it would reduce the amount of beatings she received each day. Madam never failed to correct with a slap each time she wasn’t pleased with her.

Edward on the other hand is a pervert. He sits on his laptop everyday doing some despicable things. Several times, Hauwa had caught him watching pornography clips on the internet and even tried some acts on himself. Since knowing about this, Hauwa avoided going into his room or clean it when he was home.

Gloria became a god-sent to her; her pleasant nature assured her each day that everything would be fine. Hauwa opened up to her about her family and what Mallam Abu did to her. She’s learnt to trust  Gloria during these months; in fact, she treats her like her sibling; gives her little or no job to do when Madam is out and asks her to go to bed early enough to catch a good night rest. Her life here compared to the one she lived in Nassarawa can be liken to a palace.

******

One night, Hauwa laid in bed wondering what Aunty Gloria was still doing; she always had one work to finish every night, and Hauwa felt bad going to bed while she slaved away; so she stood up to go search for her. She checked the kitchen but she wasn’t there, she went to the laundry room, the living room but there was no sign of aunty Gloria; then, she noticed the door to the basement was open. Although she had been warned never to go down thee, but she’d seen aunty Gloria go in there several times. Hauwa quietly walked down the stairs leading to the basement; she switched on the light and to her surprise, it wasn’t just an empty room, it was a proper bedroom, with wardrobe, TV and every necessity you want in a room but it was empty. There was another door, she walked towards it but stopped suddenly when she heard a humming coming from there; she was sure it was Aunty Gloria’s voice. She hesitated for few seconds to go in there but then, succumb to the temptation and went ahead to open the door.

Hauwa was shocked at what she saw; Aunty Gloria bathing a well-grown man in the bathroom. Aunty Gloria jolted when the door opened and having seen it was Hauwa, she shouted at her to get out. Quickly, she took to her heels and ran out of the basement and back to her own room. She was shaken in fear; the loud voice of Aunty Gloria was enough to scare her. She sat on her bed for several minutes afraid to go back to bed. Now, she understood better , sometimes during the day, Aunty Gloria will suddenly leave the kitchen and go into the basement, also, in the evening, she does the same thing and every night while she tells Hauwa to go to bed, she would walk down to the basement. Hauwa wasn’t sure if Madam knew about the man in the basement, maybe, it was just Aunty Gloria secret which she has just found out.

An hour later, the door suddenly opened, Hauwa jumped up quickly from her bed, staring at Aunty Gloria.

“I thought I told you to go bed young lady?” she looked straight at her; this time, her usual smile was gone.

“I’m sorry ma; I was only looking to help you.” Hauwa trembled.

Aunty Gloria let out a faint sigh and then, sat on her bed, seeing how scared Hauwa was.

“Alright, sit.” Her tone was much calmer.

Hauwa obeyed without hesitation.

“I’m sorry I scared you,” Gloria said, watching the expression from her eyes. She saw that her eyes were asking questions.

She inhaled deeply, “The man downstairs is Mr. Williams, the (Oga)boss of this house.

Hauwa opened her eyes wide. She had never met the oga before, although she had been confused when she hears madam tell Aunty Gloria to take care of oga.This has often baffled her but she always put it off.

“I know you are confused, Gloria cut through her thought. Oga had an accident three years ago which led to the stroke, so since then, he’s been confined to the basement.” She said sadly, “You see, Madam kept him there away from everyone and I have since then bathe him, fed him and care for him. “She looked up at Hauwa who was tongue-tied.

“I don’t understand Madam at all; I have been living here almost since little junior Edward was born, and have seen how oga has been the best man to her and her son. He worked so hard to acquire all these properties to take care of his family and at the first chance, Madam just left him to his fate” She said, feeling sorry for him.

“But why are you doing this?” Hauwa asked; she couldn’t understand why she had to pick up madams mess. Why she had stayed for these years, taking care of a disabled man.

Gloria smiled. If I had gone at the first chance I had, that man would have died.”

“But, what’s the point of living in that state, even his wife does not care for him, why should you?” Hauwa asked. She knew she was going beyond her boundaries. Since, she got to the house; she had always restrained herself from speaking, knowing how she’s been often told about her loud mouth.

“Oga is very nice; he is so different from Madam. Gloria realised Hauwa is only a child and some things might be difficult to understand. She thought maybe if she told her about her life story, she would understand the things much better.

“I had a son once,” She started to say. “he was very sick with leukaemia; every day was a struggle to keep him alive and the worst, I had spent all I had on his treatment, so I went out to look for a job which I got. The salary wasn’t great but I get to take care of my son. He was living with my sister while I worked here to earn enough money for his treatment. After several months of battling with the sickness, and not enough money to give him the treatment he required,” Her face filled with sadness. “One day, I was so sad and angry at every thing; I started to cry and shout at God while in the kitchen. I couldn’t understand why God would allow such a thing to happen to my son knowing how I have struggled all my life with no one to take care of him, except me. I was broken in tears and didn’t know Oga had come into the kitchen; there wasn’t supposed to be anyone at home during this time; I was so engrossed in my suffering that I didn’t notice.” She stood up and walked quietly to the other side of the room as her mind went back to past.

Oga came quickly to me and lifted me up from the floor, he told me everything would be fine and asked me to stop crying. That day, oga went with me to see my son in the hospital and paid for all the required procedure he needed to get better, he paid everything.” She smiled briefly.

“He was there for me when no one was. Two weeks later, I lost my son, he was only fifteen and I lost him to the cold hands of death.” She made no attempt to wipe the tears pouring down her cheek.

Hauwa felt a sharp pain in her heart. She sat there in disbelief, staring at her.

Gloria wiped the tears coming down her face and walked back to Hauwa.

“You see Hauwa, even though I lost my son, Oga still did something for me, he tried his best for my son and to that, I am deeply grateful. Since then, Oga remained very good to me; although he was not able to save my son but he saved me. I was losing myself, I was almost going insane when I lost my son, I wanted to die but Oga was there for me. He would come early from work and take time to speak with me. He encouraged me that life was still worth living. He told me I had to be strong for myself. So you see, I cannot leave him now, not after all he did for me, I can’t. She said firmly.

“I’m sorry about your son,” Hauwa said. I am so sorry….

Aunty Gloria looked at her with the most soothing smile and then, walked to her wardrobe and brought out an envelope.

“Here, she gave it to her. Open it.”

Hauwa was surprised, but she did. To her surprise she found an examination form in the envelope.

“I have always caught you sneaking into Edward’s room to read some of his school books, especially the ones with entrance to the university. You have talked several times on furthering your education once you save enough and each time you talk about school, your face always lilted up in joy.” She smiled at her.

“Aunty, this is an entrance examination form to go to the university.” Hauwa said, shocked and confused.

“Yes, I want you to fill it and take the exams.”

“But how, I mean, how?” Hauwa asked, confused.

“You leave that to me but trust me, you will go to the university. God will bring all your dreams to pass, he will cause you to excel beyond your own imagination.”

 

Hauwa was in tears; she never expected this. Although, she’d been sneaking to read textbooks and entrance examinations books in Edward’s room but her furthering was only a dream and never thought it would come to pass. Even now, she had no idea how it would happen, but seeing Aunty Gloria’s determination gave her strength and assurance.

“Now young lady, go to bed; we’ll talk more tomorrow, okay. She smiled and walked to her own bed.

Hauwa was filled with shock; she lay quietly on her bed, holding the envelope to her chest. That night, all she dreamt about was being in the University.

 

 

Chapter Four

 

Several weeks after this; Hauwa had been studying day and night for the entrance examination; As Aunty Gloria assured her, she gave her daily plan on when to do her chores and created enough time for her to study without being caught. Hauwa was glad for this; being a very intelligent student herself, she made sure she studied very hard and learned quickly.

One day, she was having her shower in the afternoon, when she noticed something strange creeping through the bathroom door. For weeks now, she’d alway suspect someone watching her in the bathroom through the door hole, but had thought she was only imagining things. But this day, she was definitely sure someone was there. She had thought the event with Mallam Abu had made her paranoid so she took some measures to make sure nothing like that ever happened again.

She left the water running, and put her towel around her; then, she noticed a small tube coming through the down part of the door, it looked like a lens tube but couldn’t make it out. Immediately, she took the broken glass they use as a mirror in the bathroom, and forcefully opened the door. There, she saw Edward with a camcorder in one hand and the lens tube attached to it. He stood there frozen, staring in shock at her, seeing the glass in her other hand, he carefully withdrew backwards.

“What do you want?” She shouted at him.

Edwards was mystified.

She knew the boy was up to something but couldn’t make out his plan until now.

“You want this!” she shouted, pointing at the towel wrapped around her tiny body. “Or do you want this?” She pointed the glass at him.

 

Just then, the door opened.

 

To be continued.

 

© Circlesoflove 2013

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The Underwear Rule Help keep your child safe – join thousands of parents talking PANTS.

Talk PANTS and you’ve got it covered

PANTS is a really easy way for you to explain the Underwear Rule to your child:Underwear Rule dad daughter on sofa

  • Privates are private
  • Always remember your body belongs to you
  • No means no
  • Talk about secrets that upset you
  • Speak up, someone can help

Privates are private

 

Be clear with your child that the parts of their body covered by underwear are private.

Explain to your child that no one should ask to see or touch their private parts or ask them to look at or touch anyone else’s.

Sometimes doctors, nurses or family members might have to. Explain that this is OK, but that those people should always explain why, and ask your child if it’s OK first.

 

Always remember your body belongs to you

Let your child know their body belongs to them, and no one else.

No one has the right to make them do anything that makes them feel uncomfortable. And if anyone tries, tell your child they have the right to say no.

Remind your child that they can always talk to you about anything which worries or upsets them.

 

No means no

Make sure your child understands that they have the right to say “no” to unwanted touch – even to a family member or someone they know or love.

This shows that they’re in control of their body and their feelings should be respected.

If a child feels confident to say no to their own family, they are more likely to say no to others.

 

Talk about secrets that upset you

Explain the differences between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ secrets.

Phrases like “it’s our little secret” are an abuser’s way of making a child feel worried, or scared to tell someone what is happening to them.

Good secrets can be things like surprise parties or presents for other people.

Bad secrets make you feel sad, worried or frightened.

Your child needs to feel able to speak up about secrets that worry them and confident that saying something won’t get them into trouble.

Telling a secret will never hurt or worry anybody in your family or someone you know and love.

 

Speak up, someone can help

 

Tell your child that if they ever feel sad, anxious or frightened they should talk to an adult they trust.

This doesn’t have to be a family member. It can also be a teacher or a friend’s parent – or evenChildLine.

Remind them that whatever the problem, it’s not their fault and they will never get into trouble for speaking up.

 

COPIED FROM https://www.nspcc.org.uk

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It’s all Lies….

Today, I will like to encourage someone out there. Are you surrounded by lying tongues? Those who speak deceit against you? They throw accusations and try to bring you down with their words. Maybe it’s a co-worker, friends or even families. All they do is lie and speak words of hatred against you. Their tongues have become weapons against you and try to destroy all that you have worked for.

“Not a word from their mouth can be trusted; their heart is filled with destruction. Their throat is an open grave. Everyone lie to his neighbour; their flattering lips speak with deception. Hear this, May the Lord cut off all flattering lips and every boastful tongue that says, We will triumph with our tongues; we own our lips-who is our master.” Psalms 12:3.

The tongue is a very powerful weapon used by the enemy to destroy the righteous. They challenge with their words and boast of getting away with it. They speak negatively against you, destroy lives; manipulate and tear families apart with lies and deceit. Enough is enough! Many homes have been destroyed with this weapon; marriages torn apart with lies and deceit.

Are you a victim of this; suffering because of the words of the wicked? You’ve tried to plead your case but no justice has been given to you. Your bed is soaked each night with tears of sadness because of the agony in your heart.

This is what the Lord says, ‘Because of the oppression of the weak and the groaning of the needy, I will now arise, says the Lord. I will protect them from those who malign them. Psalms 12:5.

The Lord will arise on your behalf and fight your battle; He will speak fire against those who oppress you with their tongues; he will make all their plans void and destroy them with their own weapons. The pit they dug for you shall be their downfall; shame and reproach shall be their portion.

Folks, the word of the Lord is powerful and strong; listen, every negative word the enemy has spoken against your life, home, marriage, family shall be broken in Jesus name. It is written that, ‘there is no enchantment against Jacob and no divination against Israel. No enchantment of the enemy will stand in your life. Those that seek to oppress you with their words and lies will be put to shame in the name of Jesus.

Remember that the Lord will arise on your behalf and fight for you. He will give you justice and honour for every shame and reproach you have suffered. He will bring fruits from any part of your life that has been labelled barren. His truth shall pierce through every lies and deceit; God’s truth shall set you free and give you victory over your enemies.

Have a great weekend. God bless you real good.

 

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Let Me Go

Many of us have read the story of the Israelites leaving Egypt; from where God called Moses, the burning bush, the plagues and finally, crossing the red sea.

Like the Israelites, some of us have felt this way in our own lives; we feel oppressed by some kind of situation or people that have laid a heavy yoke upon us and make it difficult to get away from. You have tried all sorts of method to get free, but still find the shackles and stagnation in your life. Maybe it’s a job you feel like a slave in, maybe it’s a situation that has tied you down or some spiritual oppression that seek to destroy every part of your life.

Now, I want to do an un-usual writing today- God would be speaking directly to some of you today as you read this. I would like to take you through some truth and revelation with this story. You have cried several times for a change; you have done all you can to get free but all to no avail. Some have done all kinds of fasting and deliverance but still, nothing seem to change. I have good news for you this morning.

This is what the Lord is saying to you today, ‘I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. Exodus 3:7.

So you think the Lord has not been listening to you, or not seen all you have been going through? You think He’s forgotten you and left you to your misery? He hasn’t folks. He not only heard your weeping, he’s also seen the misery and the pain in your heart. Now, listen to what he said. ‘….I have come down to rescue them from the hands of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land. Verse 8.

Did you hear that? He’s not coming down, He’s not thinking of coming down; He has COME DOWN TO RESCUE YOU! Am I the only one excited about this verse? Trust me, as I am typing the message, I feel like screaming and shouting for joy because the Lord is already here to rescue me. Do you believe that for yourself? He’s seen all your trouble, he’s heard all your weeping and prayers, all your misery are all right there before him. He knows them all, and He has come to rescue you. If I were you, I will start singing and dancing for joy for a minute now. Halleluiah!

Look to your left and right, who’s there with you right now? I mean now that you are reading this? Alright, I am not talking about the person sitting right beside you; I’m talking about God, and He is right by your side. He has come down to save you, He’s come to deliver and take you to the land he has promised you. He has come to set you free from every bondage, oppression and domination. He has come to give you victory. The Snare has been broken folks. Common rejoice right where you are. The Lord is there with you with a victorious hand to save you.

Ok, let’s move along. When Moses asked God who he should say sent him in verse 13. God replied, ‘I am who I am’. Now, listen, the I AM WHO I AM is speaking to you today; this name expresses God’s character as the dependable and faithful God who desires the full trust of His people. Guys, you’ve got to trust God on this one. You have got to trust him to save and deliver you. Yes, this battle might have been going on for so long and you have tried all you can, but I tell you, if only you trust and believe God this time around, He’s here to set you free.

 

You feel bound; you’ve been going in circles for so long that you have even forgotten the promises of God in your life; you have learnt to endure the suffering and turmoil of the wicked one. Your life has become a shamble, and no hope of moving forward. You’ve taken all the examinations required of you but yet, no promotion in your life. You find yourself failing each time you take the courage to try again. Does this sound familiar?

 

I really want you to listen to this. I know God is talking to someone right now. He is revealing some truth to you now. He’s speaking light and freedom into your soul and he’s showing you what to do. Now, let’s continue. God later said to Moses in verse 19, ‘But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand compels him. Can you imagine the kind of situation we are dealing with here? God has come down to save them, yet, there is a king that stands tall and thinks he’s lord over them. He thinks he has got dominion and authority over them and would not let them go. Do you feel like this? Is there someone standing as a strongman saying you won’t get free from this situation, from this sickness, from this failure of life. Someone who is determined to stay on your case. They have taken it a duty upon themselves to see you don’t move forward in that stage of your life. They are ready to thwart everything you do? Whether they are physical, spiritual, in form of a sickness or finances, you know it. They are determined to work against you. But listen, God said there is a Mighty hand that will compel him. Halleluyah; are you still there?

 

This is what the Lord is saying to you now, ‘I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with a mighty act of judgement. Exodus 6:6.

 

No matter how tough your enemies think they are, the Lord is bringing you out of it, the Lord is setting you free right now. I will advise you to begin to charge up your faith right now. Remember, the word of God is active and alive. Hebrews 4:12. The same Word He spoke to the Israelites many years ago, He is saying to you right now. He is the same yesterday, today and forever more. His word that did wonders and set His children free years ago can do the same for you now. I don’t know what you are going through but I know the Lord is talking to you right now, Yes, you.

 

You need to believe His word today, you need to know that he’s setting you free; no matter how high or tall your enemies are the Lord will bring them down. The boss or colleague that has threatened or talked down at you, the one that said, you are going nowhere. The sickness that has held you down for so long, the spiritual bondage that has held you captive for so long, the Lord is setting you free now. For some of you, the Lord is giving you a brand new job, some are the highest promotion you never even thought of, some are restored health, and some are freedom from captivity. Let Me Go!

 

You need to decree and speak to that situation right now, I mean, now. Say it loud again, let me go! Whatever it is, call its name out loud. Let Me Go! Every bondage, every obstruction, every captivity, every slavery, every failure, every sickness, let me go now in Jesus name.

Now quickly, let me point your attention to something. I hope you are still there folks? I know this particular article is longer than usual, but trust me, you want to read this.

 

Alright back to our topic; Listen to what the Lord said in Exodus 3:21-22. ‘And I will make the Egyptians favourably disposed towards this people, so that when you leave you will not go empty handed. Every woman is to ask her neighbour and any woman living in her house for articles of silver and gold and for clothing, which you will put on your sons and daughters. And you will plunder the Egyptians.

 

Can you believe that? They are not leaving empty handed. When I read this verse, at first I was like, ‘Ah, if the Lord is saving me, I would just take to my heels and run as fast as I can away from these people. But the Lord is making them leave with wealth, riches, and plunder from the Egyptians. I hope you are speaking riches into your life right now?

 

You are not just leaving there empty handed, you are leaving with valuables. The Lord himself would cause even those that want to stand against you to favour you towards your glory. In that job, you aren’t just leaving empty handed to a greater place and appointment, you are going out as a celebrant; not as a slave, you are going out with glory, you are going out with celebration, you are going out rejoicing. in that sickness, you are going out with a renewed strength. In that bondage, you are going with all your possessions, those things the enemy has taken away from you, you are getting them back. Your valuables are leaving with you, whatever represents gold and silver are leaving with you; clothing are leaving with you. You are not going out in shame; you are not going out in dishonour. Your children are leaving the land of slavery with you, your sons and daughters will be dressed in glory. Now for those who are waiting on the Lord for the fruit of the womb, guess what? You are going out rejoicing because the Lord has blessed your womb. Are you excited about what the Lord is saying to you? Only Our Lord can do all these, only He can give you victory.

Let me point out something quickly. I noticed something wonderful in these chapters. In Exodus 3:15. God told Moses to tell the Israelites that ‘The Lord has sent him. Then, in the following verses and chapters, I noticed God emphasising to them as ‘The Lord. It got me thinking why God was using this particular name a lot to the Israelites. He said it in verse 15, verse 18, in many others verses. Then He took me to Exodus 6:2. Please you need to bear with me and follow the verses. He said there that, ‘I am the Lord. I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as GOD ALMIGHTY, but by my name THE LORD. I did not make myself known to them. Then in verse 6, ‘Therefore say to the Israelites I am THE LORD, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians.

 

This is where I’m going; I had to take a few minutes to ask the Lord. Why did He reveal himself to Abraham as God Almighty but to Moses and the Israelites as The Lord? There must be something God was trying to tell them. Now, this is what the Lord revealed to me. Pharaoh portrayed himself as the lord over the Israelites, yes, he was the king but his yoke and authority over them was ‘I own you. I am head over you; you are my slaves and are not going anyway. I have ownership and authority over your life. I am the lord over your life. Do you understand where I’m going? The situation you are going through seems to have placed you under; more like subjected you to pain and misery, turned themselves as lord over you, the sickness has taken authority over your body, the captivity you are in now has taken dominion over you; The strongman or the boss thinks they are lord over your life.

Now, see what God is saying to them. I AM THE LORD. I am the complete and absolute owner of that life, I have the final say. I am authority; not you. Those people belong to me, I am their master, I am their Lord, I am their leader, I am their deliverer, and I am their God. The Lord is bringing them down from their throne. He has come to take authority and ownership of your life. You need to say to them now, ‘Come down and sit in the dust, ye virgin daughters of Babylon. Sit on the ground without a throne. Isaiah 47:1.

 

He is the Lord and that situation cannot contend with Him, He has come down as the Lord to rescue you today; He has come to deliver and to save you. Do you believe that? If you do, I want you to stand up and begin to decree his promises into your life, begin to walk out in freedom, the Lord has come down to rescue you, He has come to save and loose you from the bondage of darkness. He has come to take you to the promise land with milk and honey. He has come to take over. Common speak out now. Let Me Go!

 

The Lord still has great things to reveal to you so stay tuned for the next part of this message. Trust me; you don’t want to miss this.

 

Thank you for reading and God bless.

*Bible readings were taken from NIV.

 

© Circlesoflove 2013

 

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Two Hearts – Episode Four

Chapter Twelve

 

Rachael had been driving around for the past two hours since she left her home. She wanted to run away from the hurt and pain as far as possible. She never thought things could get this worst, but Chris had proved otherwise. His behavior made it clear that it was definitely Alex in his life and not her. She had been crying all through the driving around. She felt betrayed and cheated. Throughout the years of their marriage, she had always been on top of things. She never allowed any fight see the light of the day. She always took care of things; she did fix any argument before they became out of control. This was different; this was way out of order and she felt she had failed in her marriage.

YOU CAN’T FIX ANY MAN; YOU GIVE IT TO ME.

CAST ALL YOUR BURDENS TO ME

After a while, she did a quick  stop at Asda petrol station to buy some fuel and also a bottle of water. She later went to the central park and sat there. She watched as mothers brought their children out to the park to play. Her heart arched at the thought of not having any child of her own. She longed to be a mother and wanted a happy home. She felt nothing would ever be the same with Chris. He had hurt her badly and there wasn’t any way she would forgive him.

IF YOU FORGIVE THOSE WHO SIN AGAINST YOU, YOUR HEAVENLY FATHER WILL FORGIVE YOU.

No lord. He has hurt me so much and the worst part is that he doesn’t even realize it.

She sat there for a little while. It was getting dark and she knew she had to get going. She went back to her car and started to drive again, a route away from home. Couple of minutes later, she realized where she would go

Where do little girls go to when they are hurt?

Mommy always make things better.

Mommy always have a solution to every little girls problem.

Mommy is the best.

 

Rachael got to her parent’s house and narrated everything to her mother. Alice listened quietly as she went on to tell her everything.

 

“Mum, Chris did all these to me.” She said bitterly.

“It’s alright….,” Alice brought her to her embrace. ” Everything is going to be fine dear.”

She looked up to her mother. “No mum. Chris has walked away from me…, nothing will ever be the same again.” She sniffed.

“Hush…” Alice gently rubbed her back. “There is always a way my dear.”

Rachael shook her head in dismay. She could not understand what other way there could be. She is the one who is hurting. “What am I going to do?” She whimpered.

“I know this is difficult for you but I don’t want you making harsh decisions.” She gently said to her.

“What harsh decisions mum?” She demanded angrily.  “He left me mum. He left me for a woman he first fell in love with. I am nothing to him, I never even meant anything to him to start with.”

“No dear,” She tried to wiped the tears from her daughter’s face but she moved away. “Don’t say that. You are his wife and you mean so much to him.” She nodded her head to agree. “I think he needs you more than ever before. I know his methods are out rightly wrong. We all make mistakes my dear, even people we love make mistake and we have to learn to forgive them.

 

“What!” Rachael stood up and walked from her. “I knew you were going to say that.” She shot an angry look at her. “Why do we women have to always forgive them? Why do we always have to take the punch, the insult, the betrayal?” She was angry but tried not to raise her voice at her mother.

“They hurt us, cheat on us, betray us, disappoint us and yet we are still meant to forgive them. Why?” She shouted out. “That’s not fair!” She cried out. “I feel like we are suppose to give them a free pass when they hurt us. We are supposed to be the bigger man. We are supposed to be the one praying for their restoration, for their change of mind.” She threw her hands into the air in frustration. “Why can’t they take responsibility for their actions?”

Alice inhaled deeply. She could feel her frustrations. Old memories lingered through her mind. She’d been hurt too in her marriage. She had asked the same questions many years ago, but for the grace and healing power of God, things were restored back in her home. She wanted the same peace for her daughter. She wanted her to find joy in the Lord who only can bring restoration to our lives and home.

 

“I am sick and tired of all this mum. I am tired of forgiving a man who does not even realize that he has failed me. A man that cared less how much he hurt me. I want him to feel the kind of pain I am feeling now. I want him to know the pain in my chest,” She placed her hands on her chest. “Right here mum.” Her lips trembled.

 

Alice looked with compassion as she walked towards her. “My dear child, in marriage we need to learn to forgive over and over again; it doesn’t matter he deserves it or not; forgiveness is like soothing oil that heals the heart.”

Rachael whimpered wearily. “Am not you mum. I don’t have the strength or courage like you do.”

Alice smiled warmly and held her hands. “You have more courage in you than you realize dear. I am asking you to forgive, not because he deserved it, and it’s not also because you are weak. The freedom that comes with forgiveness is a powerful gift, but it must be entered into with caution —it comes with responsibility.” She reached out to touch her shoulder, this time, Rachael didn’t move away. “When forgiveness is necessary, don’t wait too long. We must begin to forgive, because without forgiving, we choke off our own joy; we kill our own soul. People carrying hate and resentment can invest themselves so deeply in that resentment that they gradually define themselves in terms of it.

Rachael looked up to her with her eyes moist.

“I know how you feel my dear. Forgiveness is not about another person who has transgressed against you; it is about you. Forgiveness is about doing whatever it takes to preserve the power to create your own emotional state. It is a gift to yourself and it frees you. You don’t have to have the other person’s cooperation, and they do not have to be sorry or admit the error of their ways. Do it for yourself.”

 

They both went to sit down. Rachael wiped the tears from her eyes.

“I know I have been saying this repeatedly but I have seen and known the power of forgiveness. Someone once said that you can’t heal until you forgive. Jesus used the analogy of setting someone free from a prison. When we get wounded by our spouse, what we do is we throw them in a little prison inside of our hearts, and we say, “You owe me, you hurt me, and I’m not going to set you free.” Her smile turned tender.

“But Scripture says it only poisons us. It’s only messing with our lives, and it messes with us spiritually with our relationship with God. Forgiveness is not saying that what they did was okay. It’s saying that I’m releasing my anger, I’m releasing this person out of a prison in my heart. I’m turning them over to the Lord, I’m turning my anger over to the Lord, and I’m going to show them mercy just like Christ showed me on the cross.”

 

Rachael wrapped her hands around her body. She wanted to hear more of what her mother was saying.

“When we face situations like this; things that are beyond our control. We need to fight the right battle, and not against one another. You and Chris are one. When you fight, you fight against the enemy who wants to steal, kill and destroy your home.”

Rachael arched an eyebrow.

“Now I’m not taking about Alex and her daughter.” She smiled warmly. “The enemy is the devil who wants to destroy your home and you won’t let him take it. You will rise up as the child of God you are and take what belongs to you.”

Rachael swallowed hard. She felt she understood what her mother was saying.

“I know that Chris loves you so much and he is committed to you. He is struggling now with a lot of emotions inside of him and you need to pray for him. I know it’s not easy as it sounds but your prayer is like you sowing seeds of kindness into his life. You are sowing seeds of restoration, seeds of forgiveness, seeds of unconditional love into his life. You stand in the gap for him and leave God to do the rest.”

Rachael nodded in agreement.

“For Alex and Grace,” She sighed. “As hard as it may sound, you also need to forgive and love them. Sometimes, things are not as we see them. Don’t think you have to do what other women would do in your situation. You my daughter have to do what God would want you to do – love them.”

 

After few minutes, Rachael was alone in her room. She thought hard about everything her mother had said to her. She knew the past few weeks of fighting with Chris had been tiring and depressing. She wanted to do something different. She wanted to try the right way. She knelt down by her bed and spoke to her maker – her God and father. She told him her deepest pain and the hurt she felt. She also told Him she wants to forgive Chris, and also Alex. She asked the Lord to please take away the pain and give her peace. She prayed for the strength and power to forgive.

Then, she went on to surrender everything to him. She told the Lord he was the head of her home. She prayed against the spirit of confusion and bitterness in her home. She spoke against the enemy who had come to steal her joy, the one who came to kill the peace in her home and destroy her marriage – to pack his things out of her home. She took control of her life and her marriage in the name of Jesus.

 

Chapter Thirteen

 

It was 11:00pm. Chris sat in his car staring at the house to his left. He got home and realized Rachael wasn’t in the house. He had gone to pick up Alex and the rest of their things from her house when he left earlier in the afternoon. He waited for several hours and still no sign of her. He was getting agitated that he called the hospital even though he knew she was off for the day. He also tried her mobile phone but still no answer. The remaining hours he waited made him think deep about the things he’d done to her. He remembered how he had walked out of her this afternoon. He had been so absorbed in making things rights, doing right by Alex and forgetting two had become one. Rachael was part of him and he had left her in the dark. He took advantage of her kind heart and broke her heart. He did wanted to tell her everything. He also wanted to tell her before moving Alex and her daughter to their home. He had even lied to Alex that Rachael was fine with them moving in. He had been afraid of her saying no so he decided to take it by force.

 

After several hours of waiting and no sign of her, he decided to take a drive and realized that there could only be one place she would have gone. He was right as her car was parked in the driveway.

 

These past few weeks has been so difficult for him but now he has to make things right by his wife, he realized that he needed her now more than ever. He needs her counsel, support and above all, he needed her love. No matter how much he cared for Alex, he wasn’t in love with her. he knew his actions may have said others but the circumstances surrounding their relationship couldn’t let him walk away.

 

************

 

 

Alice looked through her bedroom window again for the third time. It’s been more than an hour since she noticed Chris’s car parked in front of her house but he made no move to get out of the car. She decided to go out and meet him. She saw that he was already asleep so she gently tapped on the window.

 

Chris jolted out of his sleep. He rolled down the window.

“How long are you going to sit here?” Alice asked sharply, “Get down son and go do the right thing.” Her face was stern.

Without hesitation, Chris followed behind.

“She’s upstairs.” Alice said and went back into her own room.

 

Chris waited for his mother-in-law to go into her room. He knew where Rachael’s room was so he quietly walked towards there. He knocked faintly and entered, there, he found her in a coiled position, sleeping in the middle of the bed. He stood staring at her and felt his heart tightened.

 

“Rachael!” he quietly called out.

 

Rachael had thought she was dreaming when she heard someone call her name.

 

She opened her eyes. “Chris!” She looked surprised.

 

Chris immediately went to her side. He had so many things to say to her and this time, he had to do the right thing.

 

“What are you doing here?”

He looked unsettled. “I thought I could fix things all by myself, but I was wrong. I have been lost these past few weeks. I have been struggling, but…” He felt short of words. “I can’t do this without you, Rachael. I love you so much and I cannot live without you.” Tears sprang to his eyes. “I have been so self absorbed, tying to make my own way but I am wrong. I have hurt you so much these past few weeks.” He bowed his head. “I am so sorry.” He whimpered.

 

Rachael felt hot tears flowing down her face.

“I have never been so scared like this all my life. I wanted to fix things. I wanted to make things better but I can’t.” He said in tears. “I can’t change this, I can’t fix Alex and I can’t fix myself…..

Rachael wanted to say something but her mouth was trembling. She had never seen Chris this way before.

“I love you so much and I cannot live without you. I have been terrible to you. I have been selfish….I know I hurt you……

Rachael held his hands together and brought his face to look at her.

“I am sorry….” He cried brokenly. “I love you so much, please don’t leave me…..”

Rachael held him tightly into her embrace. “I love you so much…” She whispered. They held each other and cried.

“I am so sorry Rachael…..Please….I am so sorry.” He said in tears.

Rachael brought his face to hers again. “You know I will do anything for you, dear,” she said gently to him. “I will be here with you and I will also be here for Alex and Grace.” She held his hands. “When we have no strength of our own, God will see us through these challenging times.”

 

She brought him into her embrace as Chris continued to weep on her shoulders. It was a time of weakness for him, but he needed to let out his pain and sadness to someone who could walk through those hard times with him, holding his hands all the way.

 

They held each other all through the night and fell asleep right there on the bed. In their hearts, they felt stronger knowing they were together and that whatever happened, they would be there for each other.

 

 

Chapter Fourteen

 

A few days later, Rachael had come to terms with Alex and her daughter staying with them. In fact, after that night, Chris had said he was going to lodge them into an hotel until their house was ready, but Rachael insisted that they stay.

 

Alex had been becoming weaker and would stay in bed all through the day, sleeping most of the time. Rachael had brought in a heart monitor to monitor her. One night, she went into the room to check on her, but Alex was sleeping; after checking everything was okay, she was about to leave when she heard Alex’s voice.

 

“Hey.” Alex whispered.

 

“Oh, I’m sorry; didn’t mean to wake you up.” Rachael apologized.

 

“No, that’s okay; I have been waiting to see you,” Alex said weakly. “Sometimes when you come in, I’m too weak to speak.”

 

“It’s all right,” Rachael said, and returned the smile.

 

“Please…” Alex lifted her hands towards Rachael, beckoning her to come nearer. Rachael moved to Alex’s side and gently held her hands.

 

“I’m so sorry for everything we had to put you through.” she said. Alex held her tight with her fragile hands.

 

“It’s all right, Alex.”

 

“You are a good woman and Chris is lucky to have you.” Her smile was tender. “You know, this is hard on him but I know he will be all right because of you.” She looked into her eyes. “Thank you, Rachael.”

 

Rachael was almost moved to tears. She’d heard her dying patients speak to her before, but Alex’s case was different; she felt she was losing someone close to her heart even though she’d only known her for a few months.

 

Rachael gently sat by her side.

 

“Alex, you don’t have to worry about anything,” Rachael reassured her. “Grace will be fine; I know I can’t replace you as her mother, but I sure will do my best to be everything she needs. Chris is a good father and he will never allow any hurt to her. You know that, right?”

 

Alex nodded with tears down her face.

 

Rachael gently wiped the tears away.

 

“You have done a good job with her and she will always remember you.” She smiled at her.

 

“Thank you, thank you for everything.” She said weakly.

 

“Now, I want you to go back to bed, dear, you need to save your strength.”

 

“Good night.” Alex whispered.

 

“Good night.” Rachael replied, and then quietly left the room.

 

She was so emotional that instead of going back to bed, she went straight to the living room. The better she knew Alex, the more difficult it became to let her go. She could only imagine what Chris would be going through since he’d known her all his life. She sat there in the darkness and all she could ask for was strength from the Lord during this period of their lives. Strength for Chris, for herself and for Grace, and then she asked for the peace of God upon Alex, to make her know beyond all doubt that God was in control.

 

Chapter Fifteen

 

Rachael parked her car at the hospital. It was 7:00am and she was already exhausted, not out of any physical work she’d been doing, but from the emotional turmoil lately that had been difficult to bear. She found herself loving Grace more and more as the days passed, and she couldn’t imagine what she would be going through from losing a mother. Her relationship with Alex had gone beyond that of a doctor and patient relationship, and they had become friends in such a short period. Alex would relate memories of her childhood with Chris, telling Rachael about how Chris would always defend every little girl in the foster home, how he would gang up with the kids to speak against anything they didn’t like, and how he would also plan surprise birthday parties for everyone, even for their foster parents. Rachael began to see Alex as a friend and part of the family, rather than as a patient.

 

She got down from her car and noticed her  ‘morning stranger’ standing by his car. She smiled at him as usual, and instead of returning the smile, he walked quickly to her. Rachael stood there, surprised at him coming towards her; they had always exchanged greetings most mornings, but it had never gone beyond that.

 

“Good morning.” the man said.

 

“Hello.” She replied, still mystified.

 

“My name is Josh, Josh Burke.” He said.

 

Rachael nodded.

 

“I need to speak with you.” He face was blank of every emotion except sadness.

 

“Sure, I have few minutes before I start my shift,” she said. “By the way, I’m Rachael.”

 

“Thank you, Doctor Rachael.” He smiled faintly.

 

They walked towards the hospital building and found a bench in the garden area, where they sat on.

 

“I have been coming here for quite some time now,” Josh started. “You know my wife…” He looked up at her to see if she understood what he meant. “I just couldn’t let go. I feel guilty, I feel so terrible, and I miss her.”

 

“It’s okay to miss the one you love, but you don’t need to feel guilty,” Rachael gently said to him.

 

“You know, that day when the accident happened, I had been so angry with her,” said Josh. “She had asked me to buy some skimmed milk from the grocery store and I picked the whole milk instead. Kathleen was so angry, I couldn’t understand what the big deal was. All she wanted was skimmed milk. I told her milk was milk, so she would just have to live with it. She got angry at my insensitivity, and said I was inconsiderate about her needs and every time she wanted something, I just couldn’t accept it.” He bit his upper lip.  “I felt this was just milk.” He looked gloomily at Rachael. “She went out angrily, back to the grocery store to get what she wanted, and was hit by a teenage boy who had been so drunk on the wheel…” He turned his face away to hide the tears about to roll from his eyes.

 

“I should have bought the skimmed milk. She wouldn’t have had to go out that night. Or I should have apologized and spoken softly to her… You know, it’s true about a quote in the bible that says, ‘soft words turns away anger,’ but I just didn’t bother about the way she felt. I am the reason she’s been lying here for five whole years in a coma.” He covered his mouth with his hands, unable to speak as anguish filled his heart.

 

Rachael felt her heart sunk in sadness. She wanted to tell him everything would be alright. She wanted to tell him he was a good man even though she barely knew him. “Don’t do this to yourself, Josh; don’t be too hard on yourself,” she gently said  to him. “I’m sure she wouldn’t want you to feel this way.”

 

“I miss her so much. I miss the little differences we had, I miss the smirk on her face each time I was stubborn around her… she was the most amazing woman, she was my woman.” He whimpered and then wiped his face quickly, embarrassed. “I’m sorry.”

 

“No, it’s okay.” She smiled to assure him.

 

“I have decided to switch off the life support, this afternoon.” He lowered his head. “I have to let her go, you know.” He looked up at Rachael, whose eyes were moist. “I don’t want to, but I have to.”

 

“I understand.” She nodded.

 

“Do you think I’m doing the right thing?” He waited to hear her response.

 

Rachael sat there in silence for several minutes and thought about his question. She wasn’t in a position to tell him if he was doing the right thing or not.

 

“I can’t tell you if you are doing the right thing or not, but this I can tell you: taking her off the life support doesn’t mean you’ve stopped loving her or that you’ve given up on her. It doesn’t stop the love you shared together, and it doesn’t make you a bad person. Losing the one you love is a difficult thing to go through, but you have to be strong for both of you. The memories you shared will always be in your heart, the good times will always be treasured.” she said gently to him.

 

His mobile phone started to ring. “Sorry” he said as he disconnected the call.

 

“She will always be a part of you, in your heart,” she continued.

 

The phone began to ring again.

 

“I think you should answer the phone.” Rachael smiled to let him know it was all right.

 

“Hello,” Josh answered the phone and then just froze in shock. The phone slipped from his fingers.

 

“Are you all right?” she asked.

 

But he just stared into the air with streams of tears pouring down his face.

 

“Josh!” She touched his hands, which made him turn to her. “Are you okay?”

 

“I’m not… sure,” he stammered. “Does this happen often?” he asked, mystified.

 

“I don’t understand what you mean.”

 

“I mean, is this a test of faith?” he asked, then suddenly stood up. He saw the confusion on her face. “They called to tell me from upstairs..… she… suddenly opened her eyes.” He stammered.

 

“What?” Rachael gasped in disbelief.

“She’s awake.” He sat back on the bench.

“What are you waiting for?” she said, excited. “Go!”

 

At the sound of her voice, Josh ran into the hospital building. He didn’t mind the caution from the staffs who told him to stop running, but ran as fast as his feet could carry him.

 

At the hallway to his wife’s room, he could see some nurses and staff at the entrance, and when one of them saw him coming, they all turned to his direction, beaming at him. They parted and let him inside.

 

He entered the room but suddenly stopped a few meters away from her bed as he stared at his wife. The doctors were still attending to her, but when they saw him, Kathleen turned to the direction the doctors were looking at and she saw her husband standing there, crying. Their eyes locked, and Josh moved closer to her. His trembling hands touched her face and he slowly hugged her.

 

“Kathleen…” He was trembling. “I love you.” He kissed her forehead and looked at the doctors and nurses standing there. “She came back to me,” he said in tears. “She came back…” He suddenly broke down in tears again.

 

Rachael, who had also been standing outside the room was overwhelmed in tears.

 

“Welcome back, Kathleen.” The doctor said and then left the room briefly.

“Josh…” Kathleen struggled to speak.

“I am here, honey, and am not going away.” He held her hands.

 

Chapter Sixteen

 

A Month Later.

 

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace……”

 

Rachael inhaled deeply as she read this passage of the bible in Ecclesiastes 3. For the time first in many years, this passage meant so much to her. There was always a time for everything. She looked over at Alex, who was sleeping peacefully in her bed. The heart monitor attached to her continued to beep as evidence of life, but that didn’t stop her heart from aching. Knowing someone you care about was dying and there wasn’t anything anyone could do about it brought so much sadness to her.

 

For days now, Chris and Rachael have been taking turns every night at Alex’s bedside. This night, it was Rachael’s turn to stay with her. She was dozing off in the armchair when she heard Alex’s faint voice.

 

“Rachael.” Alex called out.

 

“Hey.” Rachael stood up.

 

“I need your help.” Alex said in a weak tone.

 

“What do you need?”

 

“In the drawer by my bed, can you please bring the pink journal out for me?”

 

Rachael got it out and passed it over to her.

 

“No, you hold onto it; it’s for Grace.” Alex smiled. “I have been writing notes for her over the months, but these past few days, I have been too weak to write anything. But I need to write one last thing…” She looked up at Rachael. “Please, help me,” Alex whispered.

 

“Tell me what you need,” Rachael said to her.

 

Rachael took a pen by the dressing table and sat by her bedside, ready to write.

 

My dearest,” Alex started. “You have been  my joy and you have been the grace given to him. All I have to say now is, ‘I love you.’”

 

For days now, Alex had thought of her final words to her daughter, but nothing could be perfect. She wanted to say so much to her and she wished she had more time, but she knew her death was drawing near. All she wanted Grace to know was the best she’d been to her. She had been like God’s grace to her. After Alex ran away many years ago from Chris, she had thought she needed no one else to survive: not Chris, not anyone. Not until she gave  birth to her daughter and during the years that had followed, she realized that her daughter had indeed been a blessing to her. It wasn’t just her daughter who needed a mother, she also needed her; Grace gave her a purpose and fulfillment after God.

 

“You know,” she said as she looked up at Rachael, “I had thought I would have to write a long note for her, a last long note, but I don’t have to. You know why?” She smiled at Rachael.

 

Rachael felt every emotion penetrating her as a feeling of sadness and fear filled her.

 

“Because I am at peace,” Alex said confidently. “I have faith and hope in God that everything will be all right.”

 

“Oh, Alex,” Rachael whimpered. She knew the time was now, she could sense it.

“Rachael, you are a good woman and I thank God for your life….” She paused. “Please, I need to ask of you one more thing,”

 

Rachael nodded.

 

“Whatever you do in life, always trust in God….. you can be rest assured that everything will be okay.” She slowly closed her eyes.

Rachael stood there in tears.

“Thank you, Rachael,” she said slowly, her eyes were still closed.

 

“I have to get Chris,” Rachael said and quickly went of the room.

 

As she opened the door, Chris was startled. He turned and saw Rachael in the room and knew instantly what it meant.

 

“You have to come now,” Rachael said to him.

 

Chris felt as if his heart just skipped a beat; he stood up from the bed and followed Rachael.

 

When they entered the room, Alex’s eyes were closed; quickly, he moved to her side and held her hands.

 

“Alex,” Chris whispered as he feared the worst.

 

Alex weakly opened her eyes and smiled faintly.

 

“Christopher…” She whispered.

 

“I am here, Alex.”

 

“I am… at… peace,” she whispered. “Everything is going to be all right.” Her voice was faint.

 

“Alex…” Christopher whispered.

 

“He makes all things beautiful.” Alex smiled warmly and looked straight into his eyes.

 

Chris felt tears pouring down his face, but made no attempt to wipe them off.

 

“Don’t cry, Christopher. I’m going to be all right.”

 

“I don’t know what to do.” Chris whimpered.

 

Alex wanted to say more to him, but was too weak to speak. She slowly looked from Chris to Rachael and felt joyful. Peace overwhelmed her and she knew God was there with her, and she felt his presence in her life. It was a love that she could not comprehend. She closed her eyes for a moment and knew beyond words that she was going home, back to the presence of God.

 

“Beautiful….” She whispered.

 

The flat line of the heart monitor jolted them both.

 

Chris looked at his wife and the tears pouring down her face made him realize Alex was gone. He bowed his head on her bed and cried.

 

Rachael walked towards him; he stood up and held her in his arms. There were no words that could be used to compare or explain the feelings within when you lose someone.. Nothing could be compared to that. Knowing that person was gone forever broke the heart into pieces. They held each other as they wept.

 

Chapter Seventeen

 

It had been six months since Alex passed away. The first few weeks were the most difficult, especially since they had to explain to Grace that her mother wasn’t coming back again. It saddened them, but God was with them. He gave them his strength when they needed it most.

 

Rachael and Chris continued to grow in their love. The experiences they had those past months had brought them closer together and strengthened their relationship. They learnt to appreciate one another and to appreciate each day as a gift. The two hearts beat as one with unending love that was joined by a cord that cannot be broken.

 

Two months later, Rachael discovered she was pregnant, and that brought so much joy to their family. Grace had been so happy over the news and she looked forward to having a baby sister or a brother.

 

Josh Burke and his wife continued in their love. With the help of physiotherapy and necessary treatment, Kathleen was discharged from the hospital after a few weeks and both remained friends with Rachael and her family.

 

Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two hearts.

‘Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.  It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.  Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.’ I Corinthians 13.

The End.

 

Thank you for reading. I hope you have enjoyed reading this series. Please leave your comments here and continue to visit Circles of Love for more inspirational stories. God bless you.

 

 

 

 

 

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I Forgive You

Sincere forgiveness isn’t coloured with expectations that the other person apologize or change. One shouldn’t worry whether or not they finally understand you. Love them and release them. Life feeds back truth to people in its own way and time . I can forgive, but I cannot forget, is only another way of saying, I will not forgive. Forgiveness ought to be like a cancelled note torn in two, and burned up, so that it never can be shown against one.

The wrong has been done, the way forward is to keep looking forward; forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future. Forgiveness does not mean that we suppress anger; forgiveness means that we have asked for a miracle: the ability to see through mistakes that someone has made to the truth that lies in all of our hearts. Forgiveness is not always easy. At times, it feels more painful than the wound we suffered, to forgive the one that inflicted it. And yet, there is no peace without forgiveness.

The love of God is able to conquer everything that life throws at us; we need the willingness and courage to give it our best. Your love for each other isn’t enough to hold through storming seas but the love of God can break through every pain, disappointment, and betrayal. As he sat in his car, he felt at peace, the kind of peace you cannot comprehend, the peace that only God could give. He realized that to forgive is the highest, most beautiful form of love. In return, you will receive untold peace and happiness.

Forgiveness is not a cruel demand that a sadistic God imposes on the hurting. It is the painful but healing door to freedom. It is surgery on the heart that extracts the poison of bitterness so we can move forward into a healthy life.

Forgiveness is a choice we make intentionally, not because we just want to put the memory behind us, because we’ve been told we must, or because we think it will cause God to give us what we want. We choose to forgive because we recognized the tremendous mercy and power in God’s forgiveness of us. If God is able to forgive us our enormous cache of sin, our forgiveness of one who has hurt us is small in comparison. (Marriage Mission)

 

Excrept from the ‘Confession of a Married Woman’

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Two Hearts – Episode Three

Chapter Six

 

Rachael could not sleep well on the two seater sofa in her office. Not that this was the first time she had passed the night over at work, but this time around, the hurt and the pain in her heart made it difficult to have a good night sleep. She had been so furious yesterday that she could not bear to go back home and see his face. After she finished her shift, she had sat back in her office to ponder on all that happened between them. The more she thought about it, the harder it was to let go of her anger. She did checked her phone several time since she left the house and back to the hospital. He still had not called. Not even a text message to say he was sorry or even to check on her whereabouts, considering how she felt the house. She was hurting.

Oh Lord, have I lost him?

She opened her eyes wearily and checked the time on her phone. It was six-thirty. She knew she couldn’t avoid him forever. She would have to face him again. She would have to look into his eyes and wonder if he still loved her. That thought scared her to death. She loved him so much and did not want nothing short of that. She wanted to be the only love in his life. She wanted her life to mean something to him. She wondered if she had been the second best to his heart all along. Her heart tightened. She couldn’t bear to lose him.

Is this the punishment to my sins Lord? Am I paying for the mistake I made several years ago? She wondered.

She remembered the verse in proverbs twenty verse thirteen.

He who covereth her sins shall not proper but whosoever confess will have mercy. Maybe sins are really not forgiven, or rather the Lord had not forgotten and chose this time to punish me.

Her mind trailed back to when Alex walked into her office that fateful afternoon. Although she had contacted her several weeks before then on the phone and through email. She did received all her case file from her previous doctors in Australia and had studied it well before she finally arrived in the United Kingdom. She had taken immediate likeness to the young woman who had flown thousands of miles to find cure to the sickness eating her body away. She got to know during their talks that she was a mother and had no family to take care of herself and even her daughter. she had taken pity on her and promised to do all she could to help her.

Rachael knew her mistake had been her promise to Alex. Doctors should never make promises they can’t keep. She realised few weeks later that the cancer had spread to her bone and other vital part of her body. There was nothing more she could do for her. That thought had torn her apart for some days when she received the result. She couldn’t bear the thought of giving a hopeless result to a woman who had little or no hope of securing the future of her child. Now, that pity was gone. She wanted to be angry at her. She wanted her to suffer for the pain she had brought to her family.

Maybe Alex knew what she was playing into. She wondered how Alex had chosen to contact her of all the doctors in the United Kingdom. She couldn’t help but think she had planned all these. She probably wanted to find out who Christopher Ross’s wife was. She wanted her in the picture before destroying her family.

 

Abruptly, she rose from the couch and straightened. She knew what she must do.

The Kingdom of God suffered violent and the violent must take it by force. She had to take what belonged to her and fast.

She straightened her hair and put on her coat. Her glance caught the picture she had on her desk. It was of her and Chris. Her mother had taken that picture after they came back from their honeymoon. Alice said she wanted them to always remember what it felt like at that early stage in their marriage. The love, trust should never go away. That did helped for a number of occasion. Every time they did had a quarrel, she had looked at the picture to remind herself of what she wanted in her marriage. That feeling is different this time around. She took her face away, and picked up her bag from under her desk.

She walked out of the hospital building and into the car back. Then, she walked passed her ‘morning stranger’ and shared a warm smile with him. He was on his way to his wife’s room, as usual. Rachael couldn’t help but feel jealous of the love he had for his wife. Despite the fact that his wife wouldn’t know if he was there or not, he was still committed to her.

This is a lesson Chris should learn. Maybe a stranger can teach him to love and stay commitment to his wife.

 

Apart from having Alex back into their lives, Rachael felt his daughter would always take her mother’s place even when she was gone. All her life, Rachael had carefully guarded her relationships with men when it came to them having children outside of marriage. She just couldn’t bear raising another woman’s child or sharing his attention with them.

She got into her car and sat there for several minutes; every day for many years, she had always looked forward to going home after work, but today, a feeling of sadness and uncertainty overwhelmed her. The years waiting  to conceive had also been tiring for her, but now that her husband’s unknown child was in the picture, it saddened her.

 

Chapter Seven

 

Rachael woke up at around 2:00pm later that day. She checked her phone again, but there were no missed calls from her husband. Chris had already left when she got back at morning. Although a part of her had been relief he wasn’t there. So she took a long shower, had a slice of toast with a cup of tea and went back to bed.

She had not expected he would not have called in to check on her or come home since then. She was filled with anger and resentment. Just a word from him is what she needed, and he had denied her of that. She got out of bed to clean up the house before she would leave for her night shift later in the evening, hoping she would at least have a chat with him when he came back from work.

 

After a few hours of waiting, Chris still wasn’t back from work. She wasn’t sure if he was tied up at work or ignoring her, so she decided to call his office.

 

“Hello, could I speak with Chris, please?” She asked the receptionist.

“I’m sorry, he’s left for the day. Can I take a…” the secretary started to ask.

But before she could finish her sentence, Rachael hung up.

 

That was around 5:00pm and his office was just roughly twenty minutes to get home. Two hours later, Chris was not back. By this time, Rachael was raging inside of her. she knew exactly where he was and what he was doing; her husband wasn’t the type that visited friends and since she’d known him, he was always on his way home after each day at work. There could only be one explanation for this, and that pointed to Alex. She felt betrayed.

How could he do this to me? He just didn’t care enough of her  feelings and would forget her at his first chance he got. This was beyond what she could handle. She carried her bag and left the house. Filled with anger, she knew exactly what she would do; if he wasn’t going to speak with her, she knew what to do to get his attention.

 

When Rachael got to work, she went quickly to Ben’s office, her friend and colleague.

 

“Hey Ben! Are you leaving now?” She stood at his doorway, seeing him taking off his overall.

“Yes sweetheart, I’m off.” He beamed a smile at her.

“I need to ask you a favour please.”

“Alright.” He gave her his full attention.

“You remember the favour you owe me, I think I’m ready to take you on that offer.” She walked into the office and shut the door behind her.

He chuckled but seeing she wasn’t smiling, he wiped the smile off his face.

“I’m listening.” He said.

 

Rachael gently placed the file in her hands on his desk.

“I have this patient; she’s in the final stage of cancer.” She tried to avoid his gaze as she passed the files to him.

“I need you to take the case off me please.”

“Why?” he asked, surprise. He knew Rachael wasn’t the type to pass her patients around.

“Let’s say, too much on my desk and there isn’t any much I can do for her nw.” She retorted.

“Are you sure about this?” he asked in doubt.

“Please, I need you to do this for me.” She stressed out.

Seeing how determined she was, he nodded. “Alright then.”

“Thank you.” She said and walked hastily out of his office.

As she walked back to her office, her heart felt heavy. She knew she wasn’t making the right decision, but part of her just wanted to make Chris suffer and get his attention. Just as she got back to her office, she found a text message on her mobile that read, ‘Hi, how was your day? Sorry I missed you at home. Hoping to talk to you tomorrow.’ She hissed and dropped the phone into her drawer in annoyance.

 

That was it! That message from Chris made her even more furious. That was all he had to say; after spending the rest of his day with his so-called lover and forgetting all about her. Rachael felt resentment towards him; she felt he was taking her for granted and couldn’t care less about her feelings. She sat back in her chair to compose herself before starting her shift.

 

Chapter Eight

 

Alex struggled out of bed and looked at the clock. It was almost 10:00pm. For days now, she’d been getting weaker and weaker, and things like getting up from bed or walking around the house had proven difficult for her. She was grateful for Chris who had been here with her all through the day. He had come in early to take Grace to school, and even went to pick her up afterwards. They had spent almost the day together, although he briefly went to work to sort some things out. They talked and laughed together. Alex was glad he was here with her. Grace had also warmed up to him and had been excited when he told her he would be coming over to take her to school again the next morning.

 

Alex walked quietly to her daughter’s room to check on her; slowly, she opened the door and found Grace sleeping peacefully in her bed. She sat down by her side and watched her sleep. Part of her was grateful for the recent events, with Chris back in her and her daughter’s life. She was grateful there would be someone there to take good care of her when she was gone. Despite her effort to explain everything about her condition to Chris, he stubbornly still believed she would get better. Over the days, he’d been doing more research and speaking to some specialists to book an appointment to discuss her condition, but when they heard the stage of cancer she was in, the specialists all told him there was nothing they could do. But Chris would not give up, he was determined to do everything he could to make things right.

 

Alex stood up to open the drawer; she had carefully kept a journal under her daughter’s clothing. Over the months, she’d been writing to her daughter, telling her things she wouldn’t be able to say to her in the future, and she hoped that this journal would answer any questions Grace might have when she grew older and, most importantly, she hoped it would make her daughter feel closer to her when she was gone. She opened the journal and started to write.

‘Hello, my dearest; it’s another night as I sit in your room. I feel so much content and grateful. My angel, I love you as always and I want you to know that nothing can change that. I’m sorry this is how close we can communicate. Today you completed your seven times table. You had struggled with it for many days and thought you will never get it. But you did my angel. You read it out loud, and completed it. Just as I saw you today, I know in my heart that you can do all things you set your mind to do. You know, I once heard a preacher say that God has given everyone of us talents and abilities. We need to believe more in ourselves and never give up. To be honest, I wished I had known this a long time ago; maybe I would have spent more time focusing on the talents and abilities that I had. I have come to know that nothing is impossible with God. God loves us despite all we do and he holds us in the palm of his hands. Sometimes we don’t understand why things happen, but he does have a good plan for us. I think I’m a slow learner ‘smile’ as it took me a long time to know this. But I want you to always believe this no matter what comes your way dear. I love you now and always.

 

She wiped the tears from her face. Alex remembered the first few weeks after she was diagnosed with cancer; she had been so upset and depressed. This happened just as things were looking bright for her: she had been tremendously successful in her career and had been building up a comfortable life for herself and her daughter. She felt this was not something that should happen to her. Not now, not ever. All her life had been a struggle ever since her own mother had left her at the orphanage at the age of five.

After few months she settled in Australia and the news of her pregnancy. She had found comfort at the community church at the market place. She went every evening and listened to the minister preach. She wanted to find some sense of hope and strength in all these and she found it. She knew Jesus had died for her; she knew the tremendous gift of life he gave to her. However, a few years after the birth of Grace, she drifted away from church and needless to say, also from God. She found comfort in her rising career. The rush of the job gave her something to look forward to every morning. She was successful and that made her satisfied.

 

Then, came the news of her sickness. That had been the biggest blow. She felt weak to the bone. She had asked God many times if that was her punishment for walking away from the church. Maybe God was trying to get her attention back to him.

Alex inhaled deeply and put the journal down. She had so much to write but her heart ached the more. She wished she would be there to say these things to her daughter in person rather than a voice from the grave. She wished things would  be different.

She laid beside her daughter and held her close to herself, trying not to wake her up. Grace shifted and made a faint sound. Alex gently rubbed her back, and slowly started to sing.

This little light of mine. I’m gonna let it shine.

This little light of mine; I’m gonna let it shine.

Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.

 

 

Chapter Nine

Rachael got home the following morning and was surprised to see Chris’s car still in their driveway. She inhaled deeply knowing how angry she’d been all night. She walked into the house with uncertainty.

 

“Morning,” She heard Chris say. He was sitting at the dining table with a cup of coffee in his hands.

He stood up and went to the coffee maker and poured some into a mug.

 

She ignored him and walked straight to the fridge. Chris came to her and offered her a cup of the coffee. She looked angrily at him and walked away.

Like a cup of coffee can make up for this.

He shrugged. “How are you?”

“What do you think?” She rolled her eyes at him.

“All right. I know I should have called, but I was just giving you time…”

“Giving me time for what?” She said out of spite. “Time to properly take in the fact that you have been lying to me and possibly cheating on me?”

 

“What?” He gasped in disbelief.

“Exactly what I said.” She snorted.

“What is this crazy talk?”

“Now, I am crazy?” She let out a short laugh and then looked at him with disdain.

“God!” He threw his hands into the air in frustration. “This isn’t my fault, you know.” he shouted.

“So now we are shouting!”

“This is the exact reason why I left you for days to think this through. Why can’t we be civilized about this? What is wrong with you?”

 

“You are what is wrong with me. I hate this whole attitude you are giving to me, as if you should be justified or given an award or something. You lied to me, Chris; you kept something very important away from me and then you left me all alone.” Tears were now threatening to fall down her cheeks. She desperately tried to avoid that. She didn’t want him  to see how weak she was. Part of her also didn’t want him apologizing when he sees how upset she was; she wanted him to make things right. Make all these go away like it never happened.

 

“I said I’m sorry, how many times do I have to say that to you?”

 

“All right, you are sorry; but sorry for what, exactly?” She shouted. Tears were bunching in her eyes. It wasn’t what he said that made her angry. It was the way he said it that bought heat to her cheeks.

 

“For heaven sake!” he raged. “What exactly would you like me to do?”

 

“You can do whatever you want, for all I care.” She threw her hands into the air in frustration.

 

Chris stood there panting angrily as he stared at her furiously. The longer he stood there, the angrier he became, so he turned back into the living room, picked up his suit and keys and walked towards the door.

 

Her heart drummed; her body hummed. He was leaving again. “Exactly what you know how to do best, walk away.” She shouted in tears.

 

Chris stopped and stood there for a moment. He inhaled deeply and then turned back and walked towards her.

 

“What do you want from me, Rachael?” His voice was much calmer. “This isn’t my fault. I am so confused here, and you are not helping matters. What do you want me to do?” He looked straight into her eyes.

Rachael felt he was trying to put the guilt on her. Trying to make her feel pity for him. “No, don’t you patronize me; all you ever wanted is her. From the very beginning, Alex was the woman you always wanted and you have proved me right.” She said in tears.

He turned his face away, like he was dismissing what she was saying.

“You know what? Do whatever you like; I don’t care what you do!” she said, and ran upstairs.

 

Chris stood there in utter confusion.

 

After a few minutes, She heard his car in the drive way. Rachael swelled up in tears and cried bitterly. She couldn’t understand why he just couldn’t be here with her. Why he had to justify whatever feelings he had going on in his head. She hated Alex and her daughter the more. She hated what they were doing to her family. Her heart ached.

 

Chapter Ten

 

Rachael was in her office when suddenly, someone barged in.

 

“Chris!” She called out, startled.

 

“How dare you?” Chris said as he walked straight to her. “Who do you think you are?” he shouted.

 

“What is it Chris that can’t wait until we get home?” She walked past him to shut the door.

 

“Why did you pass her case to someone else?” He was fuming and panting heavily like he had ran all the way here.

 

“Oh!” she whispered to herself and walked back to her seat. “I have a caseload—

“Oh, shut up!” He interrupted. “You did this on purpose. What kind of a professional are you that cannot separate her personal life from her profession?” He asked angrily.

 

“This has nothing to do with my personal life; there’s nothing I can do for her and I have other cases where I can be of help. I just asked a colleague to help out.” She tried to talk calmly and avoid the intense look on  his face.

 

He scoffed. “Help out, indeed! If this is your way of getting back at me, I am really disappointed in you. What kind of a woman are you?” He asked in disgust. Chris walked out of the room, slamming the door behind him.

 

Rachael jolted at the sound of the door; she felt hot tears pouring down her face. Guilt and sadness came over her. She knew her motive for passing down her case was revenge. His last words pierced right into her. What kind of a woman was she? Maybe she’d gone too far in her anger. Maybe it was time to let go and forgive him, and help him rather than making things more difficult for them both. She felt weak to the bone.

Chapter Eleven

 

The following days were spent in silence. Chris refused to talk to Rachael, and would come home late than usual, and even when they were both at home, Chris was away on his computer. Part of her was still angry and expected him to beg her to forgive him, instead of making her feel bad about herself.

A week later, Rachael was on her way to the supermarket when she saw a van parked in front of her house. She didn’t make anything of it, as she was in a hurry. it wasn’t until she got back that she knew something was different in her house.

 

The door leading to the spare room was slightly opened. She went to close to the door and then she saw it.  The room had been transformed. The spare room didn’t have any furniture in it. The room was meant to be a baby room and she wanted to specially decorate it herself. Rachael couldn’t believe what she was seeing. There was bed and a small chest door in the room. She felt her heart leap. Then she heard her husband’s voice coming from the other guest room. She followed the voice and found him on the floor with a little girl, helping her unpack her things into the drawer.

 

They both turned when she opened the door. Upon seeing the two, she froze for several seconds until she was able to get her strength and walked hastily to her own bedroom. Shortly after, Chris entered.

 

Her jaw clenched. “What is going on in my house?”

Chris shut the door. “They needed a place to stay, so I asked them to come here until we could figure something out.” he said calmly.

 

“What?!” She gasped in disbelief. She felt somehow she needed to wake up from this terrifying nightmare.

‘We’ echoed in her ears. who are the ‘we’ he’s talking about.

He straightened and walked towards her. “The electricity and water suddenly stopped working since the last few days, and I decided they should stay here while they waited for it to be fixed.”

 

She was struggling to control her rising anger. “You decided?”

He arched an eyebrow. “Yes, I did.” He answered bluntly.

 

“Without consulting me?” She looked bewildered.

 

He swallowed hard seeing how hurt she was.

 

Rachael stared at him in disbelief. She couldn’t believe what was happening. “You brought strangers into my house and didn’t have the guts to let me know.”

 

“She is my daughter!” He said solemnly.

 

Rachael felt a hard lump growing in her chest. Her lips were pale, her hands were shaking. He just called her daughter. Someone she didn’t even know existed. 

 

Chris inhaled deeply, seeing her in tears, he went to sit by herself. Rachael didn’t move away.

 

Her eyes moistened as they searched his. “Look at me,” she said gently to him. “Why are you doing this to me? What have I done to deserve this from you.”Tears coursed down her cheeks. “Why are you tormenting me Chris?” She whimpered.

 

Just then, there was a faint knock on the door.

 

“Daddy, it’s me.” Grace said.

 

Rachael felt her heart leap. This was the first time she had heard anyone call her husband ‘daddy.’ It felt strange when someone you know nothing about suddenly became part of your life.

 

“Grace!” Chris stood up to open the door.

 

“Your phone has been ringing.” Grace gave him the phone and went back to the room.

 

Chris looked at the screen, and seeing the caller ID, he looked back at his wife.

 

“I have to take this.” He said, feeling uneasy. Then, he left the room.

 

Rachael stared in confusion; few seconds later, Chris walked back into the room.

 

“I’m sorry Rachael, I have to go now, but I will be back soon,” He said and hurried out of the room, and following behind him was Grace, who just smiled at Rachael.

She stared at the door, hoping he would turn around and come back. She was looking, arching inside. she began to shake her head, struggling to contain the turbulent emotions twisting and churching inside her.

Just then, she burst into more tears.

This is the last straw. I can’t take this anymore.

She remembered a quote she did read some time ago, ‘I didn’t give up, I walked away. I had enough of accepting actions that were less than I deserved. So… I made a conscious choice. To honour myself.’

Like the quote, she realized what she had to do. She went into her closet, brought out a suitcase and began to throw some clothing into it. Then, she carried it and walked out of the house.

 

 

To be continued.

 

Thank you for reading. please leave your comments below. Next episode would be on Wednesday.

 

 

 

photo credit: dsgnhomeanyar

 

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Two Hearts – Episode 2

Alex blinked back tears, looking straight at him.

“I am sick.” She said.

Chris wasn’t sure he’d heard her right.

“I am dying…” She blurted out. This time, her voice was much louder.

He felt a hard lump growing in his throat. “What!” he withdrew backwards.

“I have cancer.”
Chris was dumbfounded; he continued to stare at her.

“I honestly didn’t want things like this.” She sighed. “I realised I had waited too long and had to make things right with you, I had to take care of Grace.” She whimpered. “I did tried all I could; the right treatment, chemotherapy, so many specialist to get better but…..” she gulped back a sob. “Nothing can be done.”

She looked up at Chris and couldn’t tell what he was thinking.

He looked straight at her. He couldn’t feel anything. He felt he was supposed to  feel some sympathy but nothing of such. He still felt the anger, betrayal, despair and then came fear.  “The only reason you came back is because you are dying?” he uttered. “You would never have come back, would you?”

“What!” Alex was dazed.

“Answer me, would you?” he shouted again which made her jolt.

Alex jumped. She shivered.

“Mummy…..?”

They both turned and saw Grace standing in the middle of the stairs with her face fixed on them both. She was frightened.

Chris looked at the little girl and saw how scared she was. He turned back to  Alex and stared at her for a moment. Then, he walked out of the house. He went hastily to his car. He could feel blood draining from his face. He couldn’t really understand what he was doing and the emotion penetrating his spine. He felt anger, anguish and fear.

He switched on the ignition, and drove off. His mind was racing and felt his heart pounding very fast; he didn’t know what to do. He was angry and could feel the hurt over again. He felt she had no right to do that to him.
Just as he turned away from the Alex’s street, he saw a car approaching from the other lane flashing its headlight and just then, he realised it was Rachael; his heart started to beat twice than usual. He pulled to the side of the road and waited for Rachael to do the same. Before he could get out of the car; Rachael was already walking towards him.

“Hello honey.” Her grin turned into a smile. “I was hoping to catch you for lunch; been to your office but you weren’t there.”

“Oh, sorry. I was out viewing some properties” He lied, trying to put his act together.

“Hmm, I was hoping to spend some time together,” suddenly, she pulled him closer as she covered his mouth in a long kiss. “Like this.” She giggled.

“Oh, I….” He had not expected that gesture.

“Don’t tell me you are shy honey?” She laughed. “Anyway, see you back at home; I have a house call.” She kissed his cheek and hurried back to her car.

“Love you honey.” she said aloud.

He was still frozen. “Bye.” his voice was barely a whisper.

Chris stood there, still dazed. Then he got into his car, and sat quietly for several minutes pondering over things. The new revelation of having a daughter baffled him.

 

Chapter Four

Chris had not seen Alex again or spoken to her for two weeks since the news of him being a father and of her sickness. However, these past days had been torture for him. He couldn’t sleep well and had lost his appetite. He had no idea what to do and even the thought of telling Rachael had made it more difficult.

Rachael had asked if he was alright considering his sudden withdrawal in normal activities but he gave series of excuse. He wasn’t sure of what to do yet so he didn’t tell her anything. His mind was drawing back to Alex. He had to see her once again. There were questions he needed her to answer and most of all he longed to see Grace again.

Once again, he pulled his car in front of Alex’s house. This time, he was more nervous than the first time possibly because he was about to meet his daughter again and desperately wished she would be willing to see him considering his first impression on her. She might probably hate him for making her mother cry, but Chris was determined to make things right this time.

He pressed the bell and shortly the door was opened but this time a nurse stood before him. He knew this because of her uniform. She greeted him nicely and asked him to come in. As he walked into the living room, his heart was racing so fast, ‘a nurse opening the door isn’t a good sign’. He gave his name to her while the nurse went upstairs to announce his presence. Chris could hear someone receiving a call from the Kitchen, he heard the other person at the receiving end on speaker giving some medical instructions so realised it was the doctor. He was about to walk into the kitchen to see who it was when the nurse came back downstairs. She told him he could go up and see Alex now.

He tried pulling himself together, but his emotion was getting ahead of him. He ran upstairs and even forgot to knock. Opening the door, he saw Alex trying to get up from the bed, then, he relaxed a little.

“I’m sorry,” he apologised, realising he had just barged in.

Alex pulled her bath robe over her tiny body.

“What’s going on? Are you alright?” His eyes swimming with concern.
Her smile was tender. “I’m okay. The doctors are only making a fuss of me,” She got down from the bed, and then walked towards him. “I’m glad you came back.”

All these while, Chris had been so absorbed of with his own feelings and emotions and had not really comprehend the issue of her being sick, let only dying. However, right there in the room, he knew something was wrong. She looked so pale and fragile.

“Please, sit here with me.” She patted on the couch beside her

Chris went without hesitation and sat beside her. Oh God! what am I going to do? He thought. Please make her better. I can’t lose her all over again.

He looked into her eyes and feared for the worst. “I am so sorry. What was I thinking the other day? I was so angry and selfish. I shouldn’t have walked out on you…”

She bit her lips and frowned. She didn’t say anything for a moment. “You didn’t do anything wrong. I brought all these on you suddenly and don’t expect anything less than what happened.”

“I should have been more understanding.”

“No. I deserved more than that. I walked out first and broke your heart. I should have looked back or kept in touch. I mean, I was the only one you had, the only family, if nothing, I should have been here for you.” Tears were threatening to roll down her cheeks.

Chris felt his heart tightened in despair. He loved her. Old memories lingered through his mind. it felt like everything he did felt for her started back from where it had stopped. He wanted to bring her into his embrace right there and tell her he had everything under control. He wanted to take care of her like he did many years ago.

“You have to know that I regret ever walking out on you, I regret not having my chance with you, and every day was a reminder of that.” She swallowed hard. “Please Chris, I ask for your forgiveness. I am sorry…” Tears flowed freely down her cheeks. “I know the timing is wrong, but I had to come back. At first I didn’t have the courage to, but after the surgery, I knew I had to come back home, to make things right…” Her gaze fell on him.
Chris reached out to touch her face and slowly caressed it. Oh God! He thought. Help me. I’m not sure what I’m feeling here, I loved her once Lord, I loved her so much and I am desperate now.

Alex slowly rubbed her cheeks on his hands. Her eyes were moist.
“Please don’t cry Alex, please…” he settled his gaze on her. “I am glad you came back; you did…” he gently rubbed her hands.
She had a soft smile on her face. Her face had lilted up at the sound of those words.

“I forgive you Alex; I already did a long time ago…” he smiled at her. “We are still family and have a long time to live together.”

Alex suddenly withdrew her hands. She stood up and went to sit on her bed.
“Chris, I’m not getting better.” She said in a calm tone. “I was diagnosed of ovarian cancer three years ago, and I have been battling with it since then. I’ve had surgery, chemotherapy and every necessary treatment …. The doctors tried their best but nothing could be done anymore…, I was told to go home.” She quivered.

He glared at her and watched the turmoil on her face. He was afraid of what he saw. It was void of hope. She was giving up. He trembled inside. No Lord. You are not going to take her away from me.

“No, you are not going to die Alex.” He stood up and went to sit by her side. “Remember I always take care of things.” He reached out to touch her hands. “I am going to take care of you Alex.” He made eye contact but she took her face away. “I know people, good doctors that can make you better,” He gently brought her face to his. “Everything would be just fine Alex.”

“Chris,” She whispered. “Listen to me dear,” She said tenderly, “I came home to you. I came home to the one man who fought for me whilst growing up, I came home to the man who would fight the bullies at school because of me, I came back to the only family that I have.”

Chris swallowed hard.

“Grace needs her father. I have told her so much about you and she’s been looking forward to meeting you…., my one request is that you will be there for her, that you would love her…..”

Dread was binding itself tighter and tighter around his heart. “You are not giving up Alex. No! I will not have you give up. I will fight for you Alex; I’ll go on my knees and fight in prayer…” Tears were bunching in his eyes and he made no attempt to wipe them away. “You are my family, and I will do everything to make sure you are alive here with me…” He swelled up in tears.

“Don’t do this to yourself Chris. Listen to me,” She wiped the tears away from his face. “I am not afraid of dying as long as you are here with me and I have a home for my daughter-”

“You will not do that to me Alex, you cannot come back to me and then lose you all over again. No!” He interrupted looking straight into her eyes.

 

Just then, the door opened and to his surprise, Rachael walked in.

Chris froze up beside Alex.

“Oh Doctor!” Alex wiped the tears away from her face. “I’m sorry, have I been keeping you waiting?”
“Chris!” Rachael called out in shock. “What are you doing here?” She asked looking from Chris to Alex.

She glanced at his hand, he was still holding Alex’s hands.

Chris immediately stood up, releasing his hands.

“Ms Curtis,” She looked over to Alex. Instantly, she knew.  “Alexandra Curtis.” She whispered to herself trying to make sense of the whole thing. “Alex, you’re….” She pointed to Chris and then, ran out of the room.

 

Chris had been gob smacked. He had not planned for his wife to find out things like this. He wiped his hands down his face and looked at Alex. He saw she was confused.

“I have to go.” He said and walked quickly out of the room. He didn’t want to leave Alex like that. He turned back into the room and found she was still sitting where he had left her, still dazed “I will be back Alex, I promise you.” He said and went off her.

 

He hurried down stairs to see if Rachael was still there, but she wasn’t. The nurse was standing in the middle of the room with a tray of injection. Chris noticed the confusion on her face, but he walked out of the room nonetheless.

 

She’s gone. He rubbed his hands down his face again as though to push away the confusion but that didn’t help. So he hurried into his car and drove off. He knew Rachael would be going home and he had some explanation to do. Help me Lord.

 

Chapter Five

 

Rachael was disconcerted. She couldn’t believe Chris would keep that away from her. The whole scene just made sense to her now. She had been on house calls today to check on her patients receiving treatments from home. Alex was her third house call for today; she had been her patient for a couple of weeks since her transfer back to the United Kingdom. She had gone into the kitchen to receive an important call from the hospital and waited a while in the living room when the nurse told her Ms Curtis had a guest in her room. When she realised she had no more time to spare, she had gone in.

How long has he been seeing her and what was he doing up there? Then she remembered two weeks ago when she met him on her way to see Ms Curtis. No wonder he was so tensed. All these became clearer now; his recent withdrawal and the lies to cover up his tracks.

Twenty minutes later, she pulled up in her drive way and went straight inside without locking her car. She noticed Chris’s car behind her but went straight in.

Shortly after, Chris entered. She faced him squarely, locking eyes with him.
“Tell me it’s not what I’m thinking?” She shouted at him.

“I can explain.” He flustered.

“Were you ever going to tell me?” she asked furiously. “What exactly is going on? I mean, isn’t that the same Alex? She asked in disarray.

“I’ m sorry, I was planning to tell you everything.”

“What!” She stared into his eyes, confused.

He reached out to touch her but she jerked away from him. “Honey, I was planning to, but was still confused at the whole thing.”.

“Confused?” What for?” She flashed an angry look at him. “Confused about going back to your first love or keeping up with me?”

His face went grim. “You know better than that Rachael; this is not what you think?”

“Tell me what I should think, tell me?” She was struggling to control her rising anger. “Seeing you both locked up in the room for so long and holding hands.” She rolled her eyes.

“It’s not what you think Rachael. She dropped in my office two weeks ago and then told me everything; I didn’t even know she was back.”

“Two weeks ago?” She stared at him and fought the surging anger inside her. “Christopher Ross, you knew all about these two weeks ago, and you are still planning to tell me?”

“It’s not what you think?” he barked hard.

“Don’t you dare.” She warned. “You have no right to shout at me here.” Tears were bunching in her eyes. She was disappointed at him.
Chris realised he was taking his anger on his wife. He pulled his emotions together.

“I’m sorry. I’m just overwhelmed. Honestly, I was planning to tell you but wasn’t sure of what I was dealing with.”

“I really don’t understand. You kept saying you were planning to tell me. I am not convinced still. What exactly did you want to tell me?”

“What do you want me to say Rachael? What?”

“I want you to tell me the truth and drop the attitude.” She was infuriated. “What about the girl?”

At that, he drew back and sat down.

He inhaled deeply. “She’s my daughter.”

Rachael gasped.

“Honestly, I didn’t know about her, she never called to tell me.” He added quickly.
She was quite for a moment. She felt pain in her chest. Tears sprang to her eyes. The Old pain rose up, gripping her by the throat. She remembered when she first met him and the couples of weeks into their relationship, he did always compared her to Alex. Rachael knew he was still in love with her despite the fact that she had been gone for many years. She had doubted his true love for her several times, and she even ended the relationship but he came back begging. He said he had been so absorbed in his past life and held tightly to the pain. He assured her he was over Alex and wanted a new life with her. He said he loved her more than anyone in the world and she was his true love. Rachael knew it was not as easy as he had said it, but she was willing to give him another chance.
She glanced at him and could see he was in deep thought. “From the very day I met you, the first person you told me about was Alex. She was everything to you. You never got over her but pretended to be; part of you still longed for her. I fought for you Chris; I loved you even when I knew I was the second best but I stayed.. In your heart, you have always compared me to her. Alex was the best thing that ever happened to you…” Rachael moaned in tears.

Chris stood up and walked up to her. “Why are you doing this?” Chris asked. “Alex was in my past….she was family to me irrespective of the relationship I shared with her-

“No.” She interrupted. She isn’t family. She was your lover and I am your family.” She blurted out.

He turned away from her.

“If she means nothing more to you. Why then have you kept it from me. Why have you been so distracted for weeks now. You are still in love with her?” She felt a lump in her throat when she said that. The raging on her chest wouldn’t stop either.

“What!” He turned to her. “Don’t be absurd.” He had a dismissal look on her face.

Rachael wasn’t convinced. “Yes you are! You have been torn apart for many days now, and the same thing that built a wall between us is here to stay forever; the child would always be a reminder of her even when she’s gone.” She made eye contact.

He frowned. “What do you mean ‘when she’s gone’?” His eyes darkened ominously.

“You do know she’s dying or is she hiding that from you?”

He flashed an angry look at her. “She is not dying” He shouted.

“What!” Rachael was startled at the sound of his voice.

“Nothing is going to take her away from me now, not even death.” He yelled at her.

“What!” Rachael gasped in disbelief.
“She came back Rachael, she did and that matters and I am not about to lose her all over again. She was the only family I grew up with. We did everything together. She took care of me and I did took care of her. You think am going to sit back and watch her taken away from me again. No, nothing would take care away from me now, not even death.” He was panting heavily.

Rachael stared at him in utter confusion. She couldn’t believe the words coming out of his mouth.
“Even if she wasn’t sick, would you walk away?” She asked staring into his eyes.

“Of course not”! I will not walk away from the only family that I ever had; she was all that I had and for crying out loud. She is the mother of my child.” He blurted out.

Rachael was shocked to hear those words. She flushed and felt her heart sinking in dismay. She stared at him; tears streaming down her face. She took her  car keys from the table and rushed out of the house, got into her car and drove off.

 

To be continued.

Thank you all for reading. Appreciate all your comments. Next episode would be on Friday 5/02

 

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TWO HEARTS

Chapter One

 

Christopher  Ross looked through the list of housing properties once again. He had worked for several weeks to achieve the highest sales record, and it looked like he was on the high rank for a good bonus this month for the job well done. He smiled and inhaled deeply, a ray of relief swept through him. He had been working tirelessly for many weeks and now he could have this weekend off and raise his feet up.

 

Just then, he heard a faint knock on his door. He looked up and to his astonishment, he found someone he would never had thought in a million years standing right there. He was gobsmacked for a moment. He felt as if  time had stood still.
“Alexandra!” Chris exclaimed. He looked at her intently in utter astonishment.

“Hello Chris.” She smiled.

 

Chris had not uttered any word. He was frozen again.

 

Alex stepped into the office and closed the door behind her. “I’m sorry there wasn’t anyone at the reception.” She said.  She was obviously nervous. She stood there unsure of how to greet him, perhaps a platonic handshake or a tight embrace. She did neither but stood there staring back at him.

“Is this really you?” Chris stood up. He felt his heart rate had increased than usual.
“Well, I’m no ghost.” She let out a short laugh. “It is nice to see you again.” Alex couldn’t contain the emotion bubbling inside of her; she went straight to his side and hugged him tightly. She observed the shock in his countenance and how bewildered he was.

 

“How did you find me?” he asked. “I mean, it’s been how many years now?” he reaffirmed in disbelief.

She smiled, focusing on the emotional expression on his face.  “How hard is it to find a good estate agent in town?” She smiled. “I looked you up on the lists of estate agents and found your address.”
“Well, we proud ourselves to be the best.” he smiled back at her. Chris couldn’t get his eyes off her. She had grown so differently compared to the last time he saw her. Her dimples were still there though. She was still as beautiful as ever. She had a head-scarf on so he couldn’t place it if she still had the long silk hair. “Honestly, Alex, I still can’t believe you are the one here. When did you get back?”

 

Alex glanced at the chair.

 

“Oh sorry, please sit.” He apologized realizing he had not offered her a seat.

“I got back to the United Kingdom barely a month, but  moved back to Essex two weeks ago.”

 

“Really!”

 

“I have been trying to locate you since I got back. I stumbled on your address this afternoon.” she smiled.

“Great!” he smiled, and then took a long look at her.  Old memories flashed through his mind. He remembered how much he loved and adored her. She had been the only important thing in his life for a very long time until she took off and left him all alone.

“How are you?” the sound of her soft voice jolted him out from his thought.

“I’m great!” he grinned. “And you?”

“Good” she nodded. The atmosphere was becoming tense; either of them knowing what to say. Alex had practiced her words before she walked into his office, but none of the words seem relevant now. Every glance at him was a reminder of how she broke his heart and betrayed him. She wished she could  go out and re-trace her steps back in, perhaps, she could find the right words to say, but it was clear to her that no amount of words can take the pain and hurt away.

Chris on the other hand couldn’t imagine what she felt, but he saw the pain and sadness in her eyes too. The atmosphere and awkward silence didn’t help either. He had to break the silence.
He wasn’t sure of what to say to ease the tension so he voiced out what first came to mind.
“Would you like us to go grab a drink or something?”
“Actually, I have to meet with someone at my place in half an hour but would love to arrange a meeting. I wanted to be sure I had the right address.” She stood up. “Shall we say tomorrow afternoon at my place?”

He chuckled. He wouldn’t want to miss a date with Alexander Brown, especially now that she is back in town. He wasn’t particular about the lunch; a part of him longed for answers to those questions that had haunted him over the years. She gave him the address and left briskly, taking a last glimpse of him before shutting the door behind her.

 

 

 

Chris and Alex grew up together in a foster home in the South East of London. They were about the age of five when the meet in the same foster home and had been best of friends.

Early in their teenage years, they started a secret relationship without the knowledge of their foster parents until they were sixteen years of age when they left home together. Chris and Alex rented an apartment together and started living as a couple. They were both young but desperately in love with each other. Chris was determined to work very hard to cater for them both, considering their background. They studied at the same university and continued their lives together. Shortly after school, Chris got an excellent job which came with a decent income that could provide for them both.

He was willing to make her happy at all cost and give her everything she ever wanted in life but Alex had her preconceived agenda. She wanted adventure, exposure and get to see more opportunities in life. She desired to travel the world but felt she was being held back. However, things were about to change; Chris had planned a romantic weekend trip to Paris. On their last night there, they had dinner in one of the most exotic restaurants.
He had arranged for her best song to be played, ‘Do you love me by Jonathan Butler’, then, he requested to have a dance with her.

 

They were locked in each other’s arms; Alex leaned on his shoulder, enjoying every moment of it. He felt assured without doubt that she was the woman for him. He wanted to spend the rest of his life with her and make her happy. Toward the end of the song, Chris took her hands, knelt down on one knee and proposed to her. Alex had stared back at him in utter confusion for several seconds. She stood there embarrassed and when she couldn’t contain the look from everyone’s faces, she took to her heels out of the restaurant.

 

Chris had been gobsmacked for a moment when she walked off. In his widest dream, he never thought of being rejected. He was sure she loved him but couldn’t comprehend the spontaneous reaction so he ran after her as she made her way back to the hotel.

He found her in their hotel room packing her bag to leave. Chris started to apologise. he thought he must have done something to upset her. Maybe the way he did proposed or he missed something.  She insisted that he had no fault, rather, she was to be blamed. She confessed that she felt choked by his love and wanted to be free; free to experience life. She had known Chris all her life but all these years of being together became tiring.

Chris had thought marriage was certain by reason of the relationship they had built over the years but he couldn’t understand her sudden change of mind. Alex on the other hand was not ready to be tied down in marriage even though she loved him. Her desire was to see the world. They both went back home the following day while Alex moved out of the house and travelled to Australia the following week but left a message, saying she was okay. That was the last he heard from her.
Chris was heartbroken and dumbfounded at all these. In fact, he lost all sense of sanity; he just couldn’t understand how in one week his whole life could change. He felt that she had used him and took advantage of his love all these years. It took him several months to get himself together. He held so much resentment towards her and hated every woman for the heartbreak and betrayal.

It took the grace and power of God to change his indignation into peace. He experienced God two years later. That was the most amazing thing that happened to him. All the while, he felt so alone and rejected but finding Christ brought a renewed purpose and a hope to his life. He trusted in His love and had faith for better days. More so, he knew holding unto the pain and hatred in his heart will only hinder him. Forgiving the past hurt and letting go might not be easy but that was the only way forward.
Two years later, Chris met Rachael and fell in love with her. They got married a year later. He tried so much to forget all about Alex and the life they had together. It was however difficult to let go, he felt Alex wasn’t just the first woman he did loved, but she was family to him and no matter how many years they were apart, he would never forget her. That was seven years ago, and now, she was back again.

 

Chris stared at the address in his hands. He was anxious to see her once again. In his heart, he had forgiven her of the past but seeing her again brought back those memories; questions he pondered upon for so long were beginning to flash through his mind.

 

 

Chapter Two

 

Rachael was becoming agitated as the traffic moved slowly. She didn’t want to be late to work again. It was 7:55am. Traffic was usually heavy during this time, which meant school and transport buses would have to make several stops to pick up their passengers.

“C’mon guys,” Rachael murmured to herself.  “I need you to move, move.”  She rolled down her door glass for fresh air.
Despite the heavy traffic, she got to work at the nick of time. Rachael work as a Medical doctor at St. John’s Hospital in Essex. She hurried out of the parking lot, and as she was going through the double glass doors at the hospital, she passed by her lovely morning stranger. She did always met the same man precisely the same time every morning coming out of the hospital building. This certain man had smiled at her every morning when they walked pass each other. After several months, Rachael got so curious and made enquiry about him. She found out that he was visiting his wife who had been in a coma after being involved in a fatal accident. he had been coming every morning for the past three years to see his wife.

Over the years, Rachael had to restrain herself from going beyond the ‘smiles’ they shared. she wanted to ask him how he was holding up but she didn’t have the courage to do that. A part of her liked the mystery of seeing the same face and practically had the feeling of knowing him even though, in actual fact, have not really met in that sense. Rachael admired his devotion to his wife as he never missed a day of this. He held on to someone who seems so far away. Some might call it madness or depression but Rachael called it hope and faith.

She went in and started her rounds. She looked forward to her lunch time where she planned to surprise Chris at work. He always talked about them being ‘spontaneous’ in their relationship; something different and romantic since her job doesn’t allow  much time together as they would like. She was going to take him out for lunch as well as walk together in the park. This was something they had not done in a long time and she looked forward to spending the afternoon with him.

 

Chapter Three

 

Chris didn’t get too much sleep throughout the night; his heart raced as he thought about seeing Alex again. He didn’t have the courage to tell Rachael about his meeting with Alex; he wasn’t too sure what she would think of it.

 

He pulled his car in front of the address Alex gave to him. It was one of those new building in Brentwood. It was a beautiful house and the garden well-trimmed. He inhaled deeply and got out of the car. He pressed the door bell and within seconds, Alex opened the door.

“Hello Chris.” She had a wide smile on her face..

 

He had called her early this morning to say he would be stopping by.

“I hope I’m not too early?” He walked into the house.

 

“No, perfect timing.” She answered.

 

She was wearing a long flowery dress and this time, had no scarf on and that satisfied his curiosity about her hair. She no longer had her long silk hair but rather a short trimmed one. Chris tried to hide his surprise look, knowing how she was always too obsessed with her hair back then. He also noticed how pale and skinny she had become. The overall jacket she wore yesterday hid all these from him, or he’d been too shocked by seeing her that he didn’t notice.

“I’m glad you could make it” She offered him a couch to seat.

“Well, I guessed I had no choice, considering how you showed up after so many years.” he said and noticed the sadness on her face.

“I’m sorry,” he apologized. “I shouldn’t have said that.”

She looked at him solemnly. “Its okay. You are right.” Alex sat down quietly trying to avoid his intense gaze at her. Although, she wasn’t expecting that part of a happy reunion considering how they both parted, but she was glad he was here now. Over the years, she’d regretted everything she did; walking out of his life after all they’ve been through and her promises to him which she out rightly betrayed. It’s been so long now but every day for the past seven years had been tough and she never forgave herself for what she did.
After what looked like an awkward silence between them, Chris straightened in his chair looking around the house.

“You have a nice house here.” he smiled.

“Oh, thank you!”

“Maybe, we should have lunch now” Alex said. She had so much to tell him and had no idea where to start from.

“Hmm….,” Chris thought; although he had come for lunch but not literally to eat.

He felt she couldn’t just have asked him to come for lunch just like that and pretend nothing ever happened between them. Part of him was afraid she might be asking for something he couldn’t give to her, but he didn’t want to embarrass her by bringing it up.

“I made your favourite or still hope it is.” she giggled.

 

Chris stared at her. He didn’t want her getting the wrong idea.

“It’s been many years Alex, things have changed now.” he blurted out.

She sighed. “Of course I do.” She glanced at his wedding ring.
Just then, the front door opened and a little girl walked in.

Alex was taken aback; she wasn’t expecting her daughter so soon.

“Hello mum.” Grace greeted.

“I thought you were staying back for the music practice.” Alex said, trying to hide her uneasiness.

“It was cancelled.” Grace replied. She looked over to Chris.

“Hello.” she greeted him, shyly.

“Hello” He replied, speechless staring at the little girl.

Chris was also surprised to see her. He watched as Grace went upstairs and then, turned his attention back to Alex.

 

Chris stared at her in astonishment. “Your daughter?”

 

“Yes.” Her voice was barely a whisper.

 

“Wow. You are a mother?” he asked in disbelief.

 

She nodded, avoiding his intense gaze on her.

 

He couldn’t believe the Alex he knew back then could be a mother now. He remembered how Alex always said she wasn’t good with Children and never thought she would have any considering how her own mother treated her. Chris had loved her irrespective of that. He had thought he would win her over when they got married to have at least a child for him, nonetheless, he would love her the same.

 

He beamed a smile at her. “She’s beautiful.”

She had a tense look on her face. “Thank…you.” She stammered.

He had a soft smile on his face. “How old is she?”

“I…” Alex stammered. “She’s…” She became tongue-tied for a moment. “She would be seven in a few months.” She quivered.
This was not how she had planned this; she wanted to bring it to him gently, not like this, especially now that she was nervous. Her hands became to shake and but Chris had seen it before she could hide them.

 

“The smile had gone off his face. “Seven?” he looked widely at her. He saw her reactions. Her hands were a giveaway. He remembered she’d always shake when nervous. “How!” he whispered in exasperation. He looked toward the staircase and then, back at her.

 

“How can she be seven?” He frowned.

 

“I….” She stammered.

 

“Is this what I’m thinking?” His mind was connecting the dot.

 

“I…” she nodded repeatedly; she was afraid to speak.

 

His eyes were boggled. “Were you pregnant when you left?”

 

“Yes…” She whimpered.

 

“How? Were you cheating on me?” His face was taut.

 

“What!” She exclaimed. “No.”

 

He realized what this meant. “Oh my God!” A hot poker of anger appeared on his face.
She trembled. “I didn’t want you finding out like this, please…, ” She whimpered.

Chris flashed an angry look at her. “Like how, I mean, I don’t understand.” he looked  straight into her eyes awaiting a confirmation of what he was thinking. “What are you saying?”

“I mean, I was planning to tell you, but not like this.” She looked away from him.

“What!” He gasped in disbelief. He was angry, but with supreme effort he managed to keep his voice a virulent hiss.

She cupped her hands around her tiny body and cupped a sob. “She is your daughter Chris.” she blurted out nervously; she could see the fire in his eyes, something she dreaded for many years each time she thought about this day. “I’m sorry…” She cried brokenly.
Chris stood there in utter confusion; then, he started to paced around the living room. He stopped and looked straight at her. “Are you telling me she is my daughter?” He asked, looking furiously at her.
She nodded her head with indignation and fear.

His head dropped forward again in exasperation. His eyes were smoldering with resentment.

She felt drain of the strength in her body. She was weak and needed to sit but the look on his face scared her so she leaned against the wall. She flushed and felt felt her heart sunk in dismay. “I had no idea that I was pregnant when I left seven years ago. I didn’t even know until I was four months gone. I had settled in Australia with a good job. I was getting the life that I always wanted, and I didn’t want to ruin it. I couldn’t come back to you Chris…., I broke your heart; I disappointed you; I couldn’t just come back and expect everything to be the same again.” She said in tears.

 

Chris swallowed hard, then rubbed his hand over his face as though to push away the confusion.

 

“At first, I didn’t know what to do with the pregnancy. I didn’t want to be tied down with responsibilities, but here I was, thousands of miles away from home and pregnant. I was angry and frustrated. I couldn’t stand looking at my stomach every morning. I just wanted a life without being held down by another. I mean, that was one of the reasons my mother abandoned me in the first place. I was extra baggage, and she couldn’t cope and  I was about to be in the same position.” She looked at Chris briefly and saw he was definitely irritated by all he heard. His eyes held nothing but disdain.

 

“But all this changed when I had my beautiful baby in my arms. I named her Grace and then realised I had been selfish all along. She became the most precious thing that ever happened to me. I fell in love with her right from that day.” She smiled at herself with all sincerity. “I wanted to come back to you but I couldn’t; It wouldn’t be fair neither did I have the courage to come until few years later when I made up my mind to come back to you come back.” She looked wearily at him.

 

“I missed you so much and I wanted you back but I lost. I thought I could come back and everything would be alright…., you know back to what it was. I wanted to win back your love…, but I found out you were married and knew I had lost my chance with you.”

Chris couldn’t contain this new revelation. He couldn’t believe that he has a daughter, and it took her this long to let him know.

 

“So why are you back?” His face showed the strain of hurt. “Why are you back Alex?” he walked up to her, standing right in front of her. “It’s been seven years Alex! Seven whole years without knowing you were pregnant with my baby and you never told me; not even a phone call or a letter from you. Why are you back, why now?” he shouted, angrily at her.

 

She covered her face and gulped down a sob.

 

The look on his face was filled with fury and rage; everything she had thought was becoming real. She knew her comeback was selfish but it’s either now or never. She didn’t want her daughter to grow up without a father and considering her past ordeal.

 

“You wanted a life with experiences, exposure and what nonsense did you say back then?” He yelled at her. “Are you satisfied now? Did you find what you were looking for? He raged at her.

 

Alex bowed her head in grief. She struggled to steady her breathing and reduce the swelling emotion in her chest.

“I loved you Alex; I did everything you ever asked of me. I gave up everything for you and was ready to do more but you threw all away and took what belonged to me away for so many years.” he shouted.

“I was young Chris; I was just a child and wasn’t ready but you always had a plan; you made all the decisions, you had answers to everything and I had no idea who I was.” She cried out. “God”! I was only nineteen and just wanted a life. I wanted to know who I was, not who you wanted me to be- your wife. I wanted to make my own decisions, not out of necessity but what I truly wanted. I just wanted the freedom to think and have my own way, right to make mistakes and learn from them-

“Good! So it took you seven whole years to realize that you made a mistake walking away from me and keeping my child away too.?” He blurted out in anger. “Tell me, what more mistakes did you make out there?” He shouted at her.
“I took care of you; I gave you everything you ever want-

She looked at him with a heavy heart while he kept on screaming and raging at her.

“Why did it take you all these years Alex, why?” His jaw clenched in disgust.

“Stop it! Stop it!!” She screamed. “Fine!” She let out a loud groan; steams of tears poured down her cheeks. “I will tell you why I came back.”

 

To be continued.

 

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Hello 2016!

Happy New Year folks. Hurray! We are in another glorious year. Praise God!

I pray that the Lord will visit each and everyone of us in this year. It shall be a year of answered prayers in Jesus name.

Chains shall be broken, dreams shall be fulfilled. Joy shall be full in Jesus name.

Happy New Year to you all.

 

Love from Circles of Love.

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With a Grateful Heart, Farewell 2015!

Its been an exceptional year. I am grateful for the joy, blessings, grace, mercy, miracles, families, friends in this year. I am grateful for the trials that made me stronger, for the tears and the joy that came rolling in.

I am grateful for those times when I didn’t have enough faith to pull through but the Lord held me up.

I am grateful for the love of my life, for his strength, courage and support. I am grateful for my children, for their faith, smiles and laughter.

I am grateful for love and life. The Lord’s unfailing love kept me.

Thank you for being of Circles of Love this year; I am grateful for your support.

What are you grateful for this year Folks?

 

 

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Let It Be

Written by Tonye Adenusi.

This story was featured in the last edition of the Circles of Love Magazine. Beautiful written and captivating. I hope you will be blessed and inspired as I was by this beautiful writer. Please leave your comments below. Enjoy!

 

*******************

 

Joseph whistled as he went entered the workshop he shared with his father, thinking to himself what a fine day it was. The temperature was unseasonably mild and there was an unmistakable scent of spices and the bustle of preparations for Sabbath. Today would be a good day – he could just feel it!

Sitting down at his Carpenter’s bench, he carefully examined the selection of tools that were neatly laid out in front of him, deciding on what he needed to bring the piece of wood he now held in his hands to life. He didn’t hear his father, Jacob, enter the small room until he cleared his throat for the third time.

“Someone is happy about something”, Jacob smiled indulgently at his son as he teased gently. Joseph tried to hide a grin as he said “I don’t know what you mean, Abba. Can’t a man just whistle for the sake of it?” “Whistling while you work is supposed to make your work go faster”.

Jacob laughed, his white curly hair gently bouncing. “Sure it does… I don’t suppose this sudden burst of good humour has anything to do with a certain young damsel returning to Nazareth today? Hmm?”

This time Joseph couldn’t hide his grin. Putting down the chisel in his hand, he said “Really Abba, I’m so excited I can hardly stand it! I had only just begun to discover her, and then all of a sudden, she was going away to visit her cousin. I didn’t think I would miss her so much, but she’s all I can think of each day. Her smile, her gentle ways, her teasing, her quick wit…” his voice trailed off as Joseph realised how much he had said to his father and flushed with embarrassment.

Jacob’s eyes twinkled, “Well, maybe you should put down those tools before you hurt yourself, son. A carpenter needs his wits about him when he’s working, and your wits have clearly deserted you today”, he said, nodding at the lump of wood in Joseph’s hands, which was looking rather like a heart. “I’m pretty sure Adir had a sturdier piece of furniture when he ordered his stool.”

Joseph looked down at the piece of wood in his hands “You’re right”, he said, abandoning all pretence of work, “I think I’ll take a walk to the market place”.

Grabbing a handful of grapes from a wooden bowl on the table by the door as he left, he made his way towards the centre of the town. His mother always left some grapes or dates in the bowl by the door. That was her favourite bowl, she always said, because it was made by her only son. Joseph used to tease her by saying “but you only have one son”, but it was a bit of a sore point for Rebekah that Adonai had not seen it fit to bless her with another male child. Rebekah said she could never question the Most High, but Joseph knew that it sometimes made her sad.

As he walked through the busy streets, Joseph realised he was doing a bit more than looking forward to seeing his betrothed. He found himself day-dreaming about their future together. Even though they had been betrothed for nearly ten months now, he had never really thought about the day they would start to live together as man and wife. He hoped that Adonai would bless them with many strong sons to fill his house and make Rebekah happy in her old age. He was a devout Jew, and he had followed the teachings of the Torah all his life. His father was a well-respected member of the community – a righteous man, and he had taught Joseph the ways of Ha’Shem from his childhood. Joseph believed that if he worshipped Ha’Shem faithfully, and went to temple sacrifice daily, Adonai would bless him and his family.

“Shalom, Joseph!” Ari, his best friend from boyhood gave his back a friendly, if boisterous slap, breaking his reprieve. “Today is the day, my friend. Your betrothed is coming home, and before you know it, the period of ‘Kiddushin’ will be over and you can get fat on Mary’s cooking”, he joked. Whispering conspiratorially, he continued, “You know, my sister Rachel says that Mary is a fantastic cook and she has been working hard to prepare for life as your wife”. Joseph smiled, but Ariel could see he was lost in thought. The men walked through the town and sat together in companionable silence at Ari’s market stall. Ari was a fabric trader, and from his stall, they could see all the comings and goings in Nazareth.

The sound of every arriving caravan or cart caused Joseph’s heart to race, until at last there was the face that he had been waiting for all these months. His throat was dry, and he swallowed several times while trying to dry his now damp hands on his cloak. “She’s here”, he whispered. He did not smile as his feet carried him towards Mary; before he knew it, he had broken into a jog. Not caring who was watching, he ran to the cart that was offloading its passengers and goods, his face now split in a smile that seemed to light him up from the inside.

 

~o~

 

Mary saw her betrothed running to her, and listened to the tutt-tutting of the elders who travelled with her. “He really should try to control himself”, said the old mother beside her, without any malice. But Mary just laughed. She was so excited to see him, she didn’t care much about traditions today, although she did take a minute to make sure her veil was secure and her clothes were reasonably decent, in spite of all that travel dust. She put her hand over her stomach protectively, knowing that as soon as she told him of the child she carried, Joseph would put her away. He was a principled man. How would he believe her when she told him that this Gift was from Adonai – (His name be praised)? How would he believe that she had not been defiled and she was still his woman?

Joseph reached up to help Mary off the cart, impatient to have her by his side and hear her voice, see her smile. He thought she looked a little different, but then thought it was perhaps his eyes playing tricks on him. Much to the amusement of all who looked upon them, he took her in his arms in a gentle embrace as Mary got off the cart. It was usually frowned upon for them to have such contact in public, but he was done waiting and some of the onlookers hid a smile.

Mary closed her eyes as she leaned into their Joseph as she savoured the moment. She knew there would be no more moments of tenderness between them.

Joseph could not believe what his senses were telling him. Having waited almost five months for her to return, he couldn’t understand why there was a lump between him and his beloved. Startled, he jerked away from Mary and looked into her eyes, searching for an answer, a different and more plausible reason for her body to be so different. The tears and pleading look in her eyes chilled him to the bone. Everything stopped. Everything changed in those few seconds. As he looked at her, a thousand questions filled his mind… each one vying for position, clamouring to be answered. His chest grew tight as if a vice had taken hold and was squeezing the very life from him. He could not be sure it was a child, but he remembered the last (and first) time he had held her, had dreamt about it all these months, and he knew for certain.

In that moment Mary looked up at Joseph and knew that her betrothed was lost to her, no matter what her cousin Elizabeth said. Elizabeth had told her “As Adonai – blessed be His name forever – has seen it fit to bless you Mary, then He will protect you.”

Conscious of the onlookers, Joseph picked up Mary’s bundle, turned and slowly walked out of the market square.

Mary followed Joseph silently as he led the way to her father’s house. She wished he would say something – anything but the silence between them would be preferable. As she walked, she drank in the sight of Joseph’s brown, unruly curls and his muscular back, made strong by hours of building houses or crafting some beautiful piece of furniture. As she tried to imagine what he could be thinking, her mind travelled back to when it all began.

 

She had been in the upper court, trying to get cool. The weather was so hot! Having completed all her chores, mama had said she could rest awhile before starting the preparations for dinner.  She was learning how to be a good wife to Joseph and she really wanted to get it right. In the months since their “eyrusin” – their betrothal – she looked forward to being Joseph’s wife in more than name. She spent most of her spare time either learning to prepare tempting new dishes or sewing her wedding garments and other things she would take into her new home.

Sometimes though, she just spent her time daydreaming, which was what she was doing that day. Lying on her pallet, reminiscing about day Abba had told her that Jacob had asked for her hand in marriage. She could hardly breathe as she heard that the two men had discussed her possible marriage to Joseph. Her?! Marry Joseph?! He was very eligible, and handsome. Their fathers were good friends, as were Joseph and Isaac, Mary’s brother. As a little girl, she had worshipped them and often got into trouble with her mother for running off to play with the boys when she should have been doing her chores. “Leave her alone, Miriam”, Abba would say when mama scolded her “she is just a child”. “You spoil this child Eli”, mama would grumble, “You must let her be a girl”. “Yes, but there is so much time for her to do that Miriam”, Eli would retort, winking at his only daughter. He loved his daughter very much and was not ashamed to spoil her. “I hope she will have a husband who can deal with the madam you are creating, Eli”, Miriam would respond, good naturedly. Mary loved to hear her parents fight over her like this; she knew Abba would always take her side.

So when that evening Eli said Jacob wanted to unite their families in marriage, Mary was ecstatic. “What do you think biti?” Eli asked, watching his daughter closely, “Shall I say yes to Jacob when he returns for his answer?” He knew Joseph was a good man who would take good care of his precious daughter; he just hoped she would say yes. Mary crossed the room and sat in her Abba’s lap, the way she did when she was a little girl, she put her arms around his neck and said “Yes Abba. If this is the will of Ha’Shem, it will be my pleasure”.  Eli’s arms tightened around his only daughter for a second. His baby girl was growing up, but he knew she couldn’t stay a baby forever.

The preparations for the “eyrusin” or betrothal were a blur. Her mother and female relatives seemed to be constantly bustling about the place and her cousins teased her about the handsome groom with twinkling brown eyes.

One evening when Miriam escaped into the compound for some fresh air and some peace and quiet, she was surprised to see Mary already there, sitting quietly and looking pensive. Crossing the small space, Miriam sat with her only daughter, asking after a few minutes of silence, “What is the matter, bubbaleh?”, she had not used that term of endearment in a long while. Mary sighed, recognising its significance, “I don’t know if I am prepared for this Mama. What if I can never be as good a wife or mother as you have been to Abba and to Isaac and I?”. Miriam, always a woman of few words, took her daughter’s hand in hers, patting it. “Look at the stars, Mary. It is Adonai – praise His holy name – who keeps them suspended in the sky. It is He who gives us the power to be good wives and mothers. He will help you. Never forget that.” Then Miriam went on to explain that the months between the “eyrusin” and the actual wedding ceremony was a time of sanctification for both the bride and his groom. “The kiddushim means to be set apart, Mary. While Joseph uses the time to prepare a place fit for you to live in, I will teach you all that I can to prepare you for life as a godly wife and a member of Jacob’s household… Remember Mary, the One who watches Israel also watches over us. You will be fine.”

 

When the day finally arrived, Mary thought of all that Miriam had told her, and as the stood under the canopy where they expressed their intention of becoming betrothed before their friends and family, she whispered a prayer to Adonai “Please help me to do this right”.

~o~

 

Lost as she was in her reminiscing, Mary jumped when she heard a man’s voice call to her “Greetings, Mary”. Startled, Mary looked up at the strange man before her. He was not a relative, and should not have been there, but somehow she sensed he meant her no harm.

Mary hurried to her feet as he spoke again. “You are favoured by the Lord! Yaweh is with you.” Introducing himself as Gabriel, the angel who stood before Yaweh, he said, “You have found favour with God. You will give birth to a son, and name him Jesus. He will be a great man and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David and his kingdom will never end.” Mary was stunned. When she could finally speak, her voice only came out in a squeak, “But how can this be? I’m a virgin.” The angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come to you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore, the holy child inside you will be called the Son of God.” He carried on, “Elizabeth, your cousin, is six months pregnant with a son in her old age. People said she couldn’t have a child. But nothing is impossible for God.”

~o~

Mary sighed heavily. She had told no one about the visitation. Not even when she began to notice the changes in her body, and now she wished she had. The question that had plagued her throughout her time visiting her cousin Elizabeth was who would believe her story? Joseph had her life in his hands right now. If he reported her to the elders, she could be stoned to death for committing adultery, or at the very least, disgraced. It was only a matter of time before everyone started to notice. “Oh Adonai, what am I to do?” She sighed again. “Even if Joseph accepts me as I am, he will most certainly be disgraced with me. People will think he dishonoured me during our kiddushim“. Her heart was breaking, but she was strangely at peace.

Joseph left Mary at the gate of her father’s compound, where her family was excited to see her. Mary took a deep breath, and walked in to her childhood home as Joseph slowly walked to the city gate. He needed to think about what this meant. He had not said one word to Mary. He simply couldn’t speak. He thought about what it all meant, but try as he might he couldn’t see his innocent, virtuous Mary having carnal knowledge of another. There had to be another explanation! He knew if he reported her to the elders, she would be disgraced and maybe stoned to death. He could not bear the thought! “Oh Adonai, what is to be done?” he asked as the sun went down.

Joseph walked slowly home. He knew his Abba would be waiting up for him, so he snuck in the back way, not wanting to answer any questions. As he drifted off to sleep, Joseph made up his mind. He would speak to the family in a few days and tell them that he had changed his mind. They would have to bear the consequences of whatever Mary had done. Finally exhausted from his weeping and walking and thinking, Joseph finally fell into a deep sleep.

 

THE END

 

Please leave your comments below.

 

Written by Tonye Adenusi

 

EPILOGUE

We all know the story of the birth of Jesus, but I really just wanted to explore it from the human perspective. Mary and Joseph had to trust God to see them through a very difficult time, in the face of their traditions and beliefs, and at great personal cost. Because they were obedient, we have Jesus today.

 

Matthew 1:19-25 (The rest of the story)

20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.

21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins.

22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,

23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.

24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife:

25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name Jesus.

 

 

 

Photo credit: kingdomofdaughter

 

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Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to you all.

As we celebrate the birth of Christ, I am grateful for the gift of life- eternal life with Christ. God loves us so much that he sent His only begotten Son to this earth as a redemption for us.

Jesus is the reason for Christmas. He is the reason for our being and I celebrate you my Lord and Saviour.

Merry Christmas to you Folks and thank you for being part of Circles of Love Publications.

 

Have a wonderful Christmas.

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Finding Love Too

Click here to read previous chapters.

Chapter Six

The weekend went so fast with Victoria busy taking care of Ayomikun. She always does have the laugh of her life with series of questions from her. Victoria smiled to herself has she remembered her last enquiry.

“Aunty V!” Ayomikun had called out.

“Yes honey!” Victoria answered giving her full attention.

“When will you come for sleep over at my house?” She asked.

“Well, I don’t know, I guess I haven’t been invited.”

“Well, I asked my Daddy and he said I should have faith.” She said, unsure of what it meant.

“Hmm….” Victoria smiled.

“He said he’s working on it.” She continued.

“I see!” Victoria giggled. “Then you’ll need to have faith.”

“Yes Aunty V, I know I need to have faith, so can you buy it for me, please?” She looked up to her.

“What!” Victoria laughed. “We can’t buy faith.”

“Oh!” She was disappointed. “Why?”

“Don’t be sad honey; for you to have faith, you have to believe that you will get what you want.” Victoria tried to explain.

“What!” Ayomikun looked more confused

“Alright, you know God loves you?”

“Yes.” She replied.

“So when you have faith, you have to believe in God to give you what you want.” She said.

“So God can give me faith?” Her eyes lilted up.

“Yes.” Victoria replied.

“Then I will ask Him.” She said in triumph.

The topic went on and on until she finally took her out to get some ice cream.

 

Chapter Seven

During the week, Olumide had made up his mind to speak with Victoria; he felt that no matter what, she should at least know how he felt about her. He had no idea how to go about it but he had a plan. He had invited Victoria to come over to his place to get some document for the office.

Just as Victoria entered, he was standing in the middle of the living room.

Victoria was surprised to see him just standing there; she also noticed his dining table lit with dinner candles and food set on the table.

“What’s going?” She asked surprised.

Then Olumide showed her the first card in his hands reading.

“Hello!” She read out.

Victoria laughed, unsure of what this was all about.

“What is this about?” She asked amazed but Olumide made a signal to wait.

“Ok.” Victoria nodded.

“I have something to tell you.” She read as he flipped the cards

“I have waited so long to tell you.” She read the card loud.

“I am a total coward,” She read the next page.  “And a fool.” she read and look up at him.

“Why?” She asked.

But Olumide flipped the cards

“Because I let you go.” She read. By this time, she was getting confused about what this was all about. She looked into his eyes for a brief moment and then saw he had changed the card.

“I have always loved you Vicky.” Her heart skipped a beat.

“But I have been a coward” She read, this time with all seriousness as she watched him flip again.

“I am in love with you Vicky!” She felt her heart racing.

“What!” Victoria said stunned unable to read further.

“I have loved you right back from school days.” Olumide voiced out; his voice was shaken and her intense gaze and shock on her made him more nervous but he knew he had to continue.

“I have always loved you, I wanted to tell you but when Albert came along, I couldn’t.” He said soberly.

“What!” Victoria was stunned.

“I had to wait and watch everything between you and Albert and it was the hardest of my life.” He said.

He paused for few seconds watching the expression on her face.

“How dare you?” Victoria shouted at him.

Olumide juddered. “I’m sorry, I know he’s my best friend but I can’t wait any longer.” He said.

“No, I don’t care about Albert. How dare you have allowed me to go on with someone all these years who caused me nothing but pain and sorrow, knowing you loved me?” She shouted at him

“I wanted to tell you Vicky but I couldn’t.” He said

“Yes, typical of you, you never tell me anything.” She said in a disappointing tone.

“I was scared you would not accept me, I didn’t want you to think that I took you for granted knowing everything between you and Albert.” He said in a low tone. “I wanted you to know that I have always loved you right before Albert; even with all you had to go through.”

Victoria flashed an angry look at him.

“I was scared that you might think I just needed someone to take care of Ayomi, a mother to her and not a wife, you are my best friend…” He looked straight into her eyes.

“I am so so sorry Vicky but I do love you; I am in love with you, I love everything about you, I want you to be my wife….” He said in a soothing voice. “I have watched quietly all these years and I can’t stand it any longer” He said.

There was silence in the room for a brief moment. Then, Victoria turned back to leaven and suddenly walked back to him.

“Are you telling me this because you think Albert might woo me back?” She was furious.

Olumide bowed his head.

“What if he wasn’t coming back for me; how long would you have waited to tell me this?” She searched his face for an answer.

“I….” He stammered.

Suddenly, the door bell interrupted them; he stood still for few seconds and then went to open the door.

“Albert!” he shouted surprised.

“Hey man!” Albert said excited, hugging him.

“How….” Olumide tried to say; shocked and confused at seeing him at his front door. He wasn’t expecting him.

“C’mon man, help me with these bags.” Albert pulled the bags to him. “Oh I’m so glad to see you.” He said as he found his way in.

Then, he spotted Victoria who was frozen in shock.

“My God!” Vicky.” He said excited going to hug her. He pulled her so tightly to himself while Vicky was still shocked.

“Oh, I have missed you so much. You are here!” He pulled her closer. “I wasn’t sure Olumide would get you here for me.” he watched her face with so much excitement.

“Thank you man!” he said to Olumide.

Olumide and Vicky were still stunned. it seems only Albert was doing all the talking at once and took no notice of the tension in the room.

“I tried your phone all through the weekend but nothing, so I thought I might as well email you everything as I wanted and you did it man, I am so lucky to have you as my best mate. You were even able to get the love of my life here , waiting for me, whoa man, you did good!” He cheered his friend.

Olumide was taken aback at all these; he had left his charger back home when he travelled last weekend so he was unable to receive any calls, although he saw an email message from Albert but he had totally ignored it, he didn’t even bother to read its content. Now to think Albert came today of all days, even to meet Victoria right in his living room infuriated him but he had to control his anger and go along with things. He could sense how angry Victoria was and he avoided looking at her.

“And you made me dinner,”

Albert’s voice brought him back from his thought.

“Thank you honey.” He said as he kissed Victoria on her cheek.

Victoria felt anger rising within her and it took all the strength she had to control herself, she felt so disgusted as he touched her. She couldn’t believe all that was happening, she tried looking at Olumide but knew he was trying to avoid her gaze. She had seen how surprised he was at this whole scenario, but didn’t understand.

“I have to go.” she took her bag

“Oh sweetheart, I just got in.” Albert held her hands.

“I…” She felt her blood boiling in anger; the sound of his voice and his own attitude infuriated her.

“She’s been here a long time,” Olumide interrupted. “She’s probably tired.” he added.

“Yes,” Victoria nodded. “I have to go now.” She said.

“Alright then” He felt disappointed. “I will walk you to your car” He said as he followed behind her.

As they got to her car, he opened the car door for her.

“Are you sure you don’t want to stay?” He asked, smiling. “You can even spend the night here, I’m sure Olumide wouldn’t mind.” He said in a smirk face.

“No, I won’t spend the night here.” she blurted out.

“Alright!” Albert nodded, disappointment at her refusal.

“I will see you tomorrow then.” He said as he watched her switch on her engine and did a quick reverse out of the compound.

Albert was excited as he ran back inside to Olumide.

“Thank you man, you don’t know how much this means to me, I haven’t spoken to her in six months and you were able to get her here for me, she even cooked, you are the best man.” He said slapping him on the back.

“C’mon, let’s eat up,” He pulled out a chair for himself to eat. “C’mon.” he said again as Olumide was just standing there still astonished at the whole scene.

Olumide felt his plans had been thwarted. He listened in frustration as Albert went on about how he planned to get Victoria back into his life and make things right by her, how he had decided to change for the better and have a stable life and family. Olumide felt like slapping him as he heard him speak about change, he knew him too well.  As they were talking, he saw him log into his blackberry chatting all the way, grinning as he went on. Olumide had to excuse himself to his room as he felt disgusted at his friend.

“Alright then, see you tomorrow.” Albert said still locked on his typing.

“Hey man!” Albert called out, “Can I borrow your car tomorrow, got some couple of places I have to go.” He said.

“Sure.” Olumide answered as he left for his room.

 

 

Both Olumide and Albert have been friends from childhood even though they are both opposite of each other; they had remained friends all through the years. Olumide had always worked hard while Albert had the easy life; he always got what he wanted with his charm and words, he was the outgoing one, had so many friends, which most were of course ladies. It was difficult to say which one he was dating, he lived a fearless life. In all this, Olumide had remained loyal to his friend, even through his selfish and notorious life; he had always been his sidekick. But now he’s torn between his loyalty to his friend and the woman he loves.

How would he betray his friend? He remembered as a young boy, how they had both gone for the same thing, when he buys the latest video game, Albert would also go for it, when he chose his courses in school, Albert had insisted to study the same course, it was fun at first but he realized he was living his life through his friend’s. He was the one with the brain but Albert was the one with the charm.

He remembered back in the United Kingdom, after several months of studying, going to work and working hard, Albert had lived the other life of partying and having fun, he had tried to get Olumide to go out clubbing with him but he had refused on many occasion except for the night he gave in to him. That was the night Albert introduced him to Pat. He had reluctantly went along with all the fun; he was so humiliated when he asked for soda to drink while they were all partying with wines and alcohol; he eventually went along with them and drank every drink they had, he tried to show them he wasn’t all that boring and that he could have fun any time and any day. He felt so wild that night as he unleashed his other side; he drank like never before and danced all through the night.

Olumide woke up with a nagging headache the next morning; he had no idea how he got home but was grateful he was in one piece, not until he saw Pat on the other side of his bed naked under his duvet. He shivered in fear; he knew what he had done as he realized he was also naked. He ran into the bathroom to pull himself together and felt so ashamed of himself. Never for once has he found himself haven slept with a total stranger he knew nothing about, not even her last name or if Pat was even her real name, he felt so deterred.

After that incident, he moved out of the house he shared with Albert to his own rented apartment. He analyzed and came to a conclusion that his relationship with Albert had never been healthy for him, he had forced him to do things he would never have done, and he always sees his reserved nature to be somewhat of boring and unproductive to him. Gradually, he pulled away from Albert and his wayward life, he gave series of excuses each time Albert called to ask him to go out or come over for partying. He became absorbed in his studies.

Two months later, he found Pat at his front door; at first he had thought Albert must have sent her probably to woo him out to the club, not until she blurted out that she was pregnant. That was the shock of his life; he never had imagined such a thing happening to him. He had no idea what to do as she became constant in his life, she began to come visiting more often, asking him to take her food shopping, hospital appointment and clothe shopping, until she eventually moved in.

That episode changed his entire plans, he had to think about three people, everything was on his shoulder and he was still studying for his masters. Albert had been so furious with him when he learnt Pat was pregnant and to know that he didn’t insist on her aborting it, he had argued with him to deny the pregnancy and send her out packing. Olumide had no gut to do such a thing, he had to think on the other side of what if the baby is actually his and true to that, he couldn’t deny the fact when pat delivered his baby. She looked so much like him but in the female version. She was the most precious thing in his life; he loved her so much and adored her. He had another perceptive of life when she was born, he made up his mind to pull his affairs together, to be focus and work hard in achieving his goals.

Life became more difficult for him when Pat took off and left the baby in his care. He had to bathe her, feed her, did everything he could do to keep her safe. He remembered a particular night when his daughter, Ayomikun started crying  uncontrollable in the middle of the night, he did all he could do to make her stop, fed her, changed her, bathe for her, rock her, everything but she went on crying, he even tried backing her but all to no avail. He felt so frustrated and started to cry himself, there was no one he could call for help or advice.

Then he went to go knock on his neighbour’s door, an elderly woman whom he had seen her grandchildren visit on some occasion. When she opened the door and saw him drenched in tears as well as his baby, she understood what he needed and helped him. From that day, Grandma Vera became his helper; she would always help to baby sit Ayomikun, especially when Olumide had to work over night. Grandma Vera had been God sent to him; she stood by him through the tedious months and made things easier for him, she had been the one who helped him rededicate his life back to God, not until then did he realized how far from grace he had fallen, he tried to do things his way own but now, he could look up to the author and finisher of his faith.

A Few months after, he returned back to Nigeria.
Chapter Eight

Victoria had reluctantly gone to work knowing she would have to face Olumide and that thought was unpleasant to her.

She had been alerted by her secretary that he was in but she made no move to go see him, not until she heard a knock at the door. She looked up to see him walked into her office and then immediately turned her attention back on her computer, typing some documents. Olumide knew she had deliberately ignored him so he moved forward to stand by her side.

“Vicky, I am so sorry,” He started to say. “I had no idea he was coming yesterday, although I saw his email but I ignored it, didn’t even try to read it.” He said.

“Please Vicky…say something.” He said standing there.

“What do you want me to say?” She asked.

“I don’t like it when you are angry, please dear.” He said back. “I’m sorry” He added.

“That’s the problem Olumide, you are always sorry.” She said out in anger. “You are sorry you never told me how you felt about me all these years, even when you had the chance, you are sorry you allowed your friend used me, lied to me and deceived me all these years, tell me, why are you sorry?”

“Vicky, please, I know I did wrong, I don’t know why it took me all these years to say something, trust me, I wanted to but things are very complicated, you know Albert………” his face turned pale.

“Yes, Albert, your best friend!” She said out.

“Yes Albert.” He said aloud getting frustrated by the minute. “He had it all, he had all the charm a woman would want, the look, the attitude, and all the luxurious things” He walked few meters away from her. “Would you have agreed to go out with me if I had asked you back in school, would you have accepted me? What of when I got back from the United Kingdom with a baby, would you have agreed to be my wife if I had asked, would you?” he shouted.

“We will never know Olumide because you never did ask.” She shouted back.

“Because Albert is my friend and you both were still together, even though it was on and off, I didn’t want you to think I was taking an advantage of you, I couldn’t ask you.”  He said
“But you never made an effort even when you had the chance.” She said back.

Olumide stood in silence staring at her; he felt his strength drained from him. He wanted so much for her to understand him but all he saw was anger, he couldn’t understand why exactly she was angry, he should be the one upset about the whole thing.

“Alright, I am asking you now.” He looked straight at her.

“Isn’t it rather too late for you?” Victoria found herself saying.

He stood there motionless, staring long at her; his fear was coming to past. The one thing he had dreaded all these years, her rejection.

“Yes, I guess so.” He said dejected and walked out of her office.

Victoria found her heart pounding; she felt all emotions rushing within her. She knew he was disappointed and then found herself thinking of how frustrated it must have been for him all these years, especially when she goes crying to him about Albert. Every way and every step, Olumide had been with her, he had never for once said anything negative about Albert, and he had always respected and supported all her decisions. She knew the truth of the matter in her heart even though she had tried to hide it subconsciously.

Before Albert ever came into the picture, she had admired Olumide and waited patiently for him to ask her out but he was too busy studying, helping her with her courses, too shy and friendly. She on the other hand held by the ladies rules of never asking a guy out, but was baffled and surprised when Albert, his friend came asking her out and she had accepted his offer to make him jealous. She had always regretted her decision, but then, probably thought Olumide would come to his sense and do the right thing, now they are both paying for their immaturity and childish behavior.

She struggled with the remaining hours of the day at work, she tried to bury herself into work but her mind was all over the place, she felt so distressed and gloomy at the whole situation. She knew Olumide had taken the rest of the day off, obviously not bearing to see her. She felt so depressed, even her best friend whom she always run to is trying to avoiding her.

As the day slowly came to an end, she took off to go home and longed for her bed, just lay there and do nothing, the whole situation had affected her so much that she could not even utter any word of prayer to God, her heart wanted to pray about all these but her body was to weary to say any prayer.
Chapter Nine

She got home that evening and was surprised to hear laugher and chatting in the living room; lo and behold, she found Albert in the sitting with her parents. She felt blood rushing in her, ‘not him, not now’ she said to herself.

“Hello dear.” She heard her mother say.

“You didn’t tell us Albert arrived yesterday.”

“I..” She stammered.

“But I am so glad for both of you” Her mother grinned

Victoria stood there in total dismay.

“Hello Honey.” Albert stood up to greet her.

“How was your day?” He asked.

“I have to go freshen up.” She found her voice.

“Oh! OK then, will wait here for you.” Albert sat back.

 

Her legs were shaking as she tried to raced upstairs. In the comfort of her own room, she slumped on the bed feeling so confused. Not realizing how long she had been in the room, she saw her mother come in.

“Honey, what’s taking so long?” Her mother asked as she walked in.

“What!” She snapped.

“Albert is waiting, C’mon dear, don’t keep the guy waiting.” She said.. “I have food cooking on the gas.” She added and left the room.

Victoria sat there in utter confusion, she knew she couldn’t keep on being so nice to him, she was afraid of what she might say to him, and then she heard a knock.

“Hello dear…” Albert knocked and then ushered himself inside.

“Are you alright?” He asked.

Victoria just stared at him.

“Honey, you haven’t said a word to me since yesterday, Is everything alright?” He asked but she was still quiet.

“Alright, I know,” He inhaled deeply. “I know I have offended you honey and I am sorry; I am sorry for everything I did to you in the past, Please forgive me dear.” He looked straight into her eyes to see some affirmation.

“But I am here to stay now, to make everything right.” He smiled.

“I want you to be my wife Vicky; I want us to spend the rest of ourselves together.” He was grinning. “I love you honey,” He took a step closer to her. “I want to marry you.” he added.

Suddenly Vicky busted into an unbelievable spur of laughter.

Albert was taken aback by her actions. “Oh dear, what’s so funny?”

But she continued to laugh and excused herself to go to the bathroom but when she got in, her laughter was gone. She took a moment to look at herself in the mirror and knew exactly what she wanted. She wasn’t about to be taken for a ride at this stage of her life. She’s had enough of him in her life. She walked back into the room with a resolution.

“Albert, do you think you can come in here with all your smiles, charm and whatever you’ve got going on there to sweep me off my feet?” She asked in anger.

Albert froze up.

“Mister, those days are long gone when you come back asking me to forgive you and move on.” She said.

“But…”Albert wanted to say.

“Albert, I told you months ago that I am no longer interested in you and I made myself clear then and still stand on my decision.” She said to him.

“But I am home now, I am doing everything you wanted, a stable relationship, I even went for job interviews today and started looking for an apartment, even your mum knows all these.” He said back.

“Is my mum going to marry you?” She said out. “I don’t care what you do Albert, everything you have always done and will do are all for your own benefit.” She shouted at him.

“But I am sorry Vicky, please.” He pleaded.

“It’s rather too late for that Albert; I don’t love you, and I don’t want anything to do with you.” She looked straight into his eyes. “I went into this relationship with a negative intention, I continued in fear of not getting something better, I endured all your lies, deceit, cheating and countless of all. I know who I am now, I know my worth and I know what I want.” Her tone of voice was firm.

He straightened and looked straight at her. “Look at you Vicky, you are not getting any younger, I am the best you can get now.” He said arrogantly.

Victoria chuckled. “You are the worst I ever had.” she said  back. “Tell me, why did you come back; out of all the numerous ladies you had back there, is there no one good enough for you, answer me?” She shouted. “You think because you travelled all the way down here will make me crawl back to you; you disgust me Albert and I am through with you.”

“Fine!” He shouted back, “I don’t have to take all these,” He walked out of the room, and then returned back. “I can see that’s why you haven’t been in any relationship since you left me. You think you are bigger than what you are now; take a look at yourself in the mirror, probably that will jolt you back to reality.” He said and slammed the door.

“How dare you?” Victoria raged after him and then stopped when she reached the door. She didn’t want to satisfy him by exchanging further words with him.

She went back and sat for a moment on her bed, she was so angry, wanted to scream or even cry but nothing came out, not until her mother barged in.

“What is wrong with you?” She shouted at her. “Do you have to chase everyone away?” She continued. “I have had enough of this stubbornness with you.”

Victoria shivered as tears flowed freely from her eyes.

“Fine! You can live your life of solitude but not in my house.” She shouted at her until Victoria heard her Father’s voice.

“Enough Beatrice, leave the girl alone.” Her father shouted.

“Fine, I will; go ahead and pamper her as you always do.” She hissed and walked out.

Victoria looked up in tears at her father.

“Daddy…” She whimpered.

“It’s Okay.” Her father sat down with her.

“I can’t marry Albert daddy.” She sobbed on his shoulder. “I can’t.” She said

“I know, I don’t like him either.” Her father smiled to cheer her up.

“You don’t?” Victoria looked up at him.

“But why didn’t you say anything?” Victoria asked.

“It’s all your decision dear and whatever you do, I will stand by you. Besides, I always knew you would make the right decision.” He nodded his head.

“Oh Daddy!” She said in tears. “I am more confused than ever.” Victoria said.

“Why?” He asked.
“It’s Olumide,” She said. “He said he has always loved me all these years but never said anything.”

“Hmm, it’s about time.” Her father said.

“What do you mean?” She asked.

“I have always known he had something for you but don’t know why it took this long to say something.”

“Oh Daddy, I am really chasing everyone away.” Victoria cried

“No, you are not dear; God will bring what is yours to you.” He said

“You think so?”

“I know so.” He wiped the tears away from her eyes and smiled softly. “So what have you decided to do?” He asked.

“I honestly don’t know” She answered  “Can’t you just tell me what to do?” She looked into his eyes.

“My princess, there are some decision you need to make yourself and this falls under it, you need to ask God for wisdom and guidance.” He said.

“But Olumide is Albert’s friend, what would people say?” She asked.

“My dear, the day you start thinking of what people will say, that is the day you stop growing. I advice you go to God and hear what He’s saying. What he says is the most important of all.” He said as he stood up.

“I will pray for God’s divine direction for you my dear and don’t worry about your mother, she’s my beloved wife,” He smiled. “I know how to talk to her.” He said and walked out of the room.

Victoria was left all alone again, she wanted to lay down and continue to ponder on the whole things but realized worrying and thinking does not solve any problem, she decide to go on her knees and speak to her Maker.

“Father, I acknowledged that I am dependent upon you and your wisdom. I thank you lord that you created me this way so that I can learn to draw near to You each day and receive your abundant supply. I ask you for wisdom Lord and insight for my life. I need you to show me the right path to go and make your own decision for my life. Help me to know what to do in this situation. Help me not to rely on my own understand and others. Rather, let me judge and decide by what the Holy Spirit shows me. Thank you in advance for giving me all that I need. Amen!” She said still on her knees.

She stayed for a while in total silence as she felt His divine peace come all over her, she still had no idea what to do but she felt His peace within her, she felt assured of His presence and guidance.
Chapter Ten

Albert got back home all angry and frustrated. He stomped into the living room cussing and shouting.

“Who does she think she is?” he yelled out.

“What is it?” Olumide asked.

“That bitch, she thinks so highly of herself.” he shouted.

“Alright man, I’ve got a kid sleeping and no cussing in my house.” He said back.

“Sorry man.” He apologized.

“Can you believe her; after coming all the way back to Nigeria to beg her, she’s still behaving like a nut case, proving all stubborn.” He said angrily. “I have done everything for her, everything, what else does she want?” he yelled.

“What have you done?” Olumide shouted in anger after having to listen to him. “What have you done for her?” he said again.

“What!” Albert gasped as he was taken aback at his outburst.

“I am sick and tired, so tired of you lamenting of what you have done; you are so pathetic, selfish. You have no intention of making things right by her, you only came back to get her back with you then you travel back.” he yelled at him

“What do you mean?” He asked shocked and confused.

“Yes I saw your travel document, just left it lying on the bed in the room; you have a schedule fight for next week. Tell me, what were you planning to tell her after you get her back with you? An emergency you have to attend to back in the state, what? I even doubt that you went for any interviews today.” He said.

“What are you doing man; I thought you were supposed to have my back.” He was confused

“I am tired of having your back, I am tired of being your side kick, I am tired of being used by you, I am tired of you chasing and taking what is mine.” He said out frustrated.

“What!” Albert said standing there in utter confusion.

“Yes, you had to have her, you knew I had something going on with Victoria, you knew my weaknesses, you knew I was summing up the courage to ask her out back in School, you knew all these, yet you had to get her, You had to take what is mine and I have had to watch you hurt and disappoint her over and over again.” He shouted.

“It’s not my fault you are always slacking when it comes to women.” Albert said out.

“Slacking, yes, backstabbing, no; you are wicked, I don’t know why I stood by you all these years; the moment you got back into the country, you have had numerous calls and chatting with all your girlfriends. Tell me, what happened with Jade, the one you married just to get your papers?” He blurted out.

“I don’t know what you mean?” He lied.

“Liar, you think you can hide that from me, I know everything you ever did even when I was gone. You told me it was just an agreement between you two to get your papers and you did paid her off, but you lied, you have been sleeping with her, Jade doesn’t see it as a contract, she married you for real, tell me, what happens to her two children, your children?” He looked furiously at him.

“What were you planning to do: marry Vicky here in Nigeria and then have Jade in the United Kingdom? You are sick man.” He shouted staring at him. “When will you grow up and take care of your responsibility, you need to start taking responsibility for your action and stop hurting everyone.” he said in so much pain in his tone.

Then they were both silent, staring at each other to what seems like forever, pondering over all he just said.

“So what do you want?” Albert asked in a calm tone.

“I want you to leave Vicky alone,” He said. “I have always loved her and….” He tried to say but just went to seat down. He felt he probably had not thought this over, his best friend ex-girlfriend.

“Has she accepted?” Albert asked.

“No, she’s angry at me.” He said quietly.

“I’m sorry man,” Albert said. “I never realized how much I had hurt you, I was just having fun.” He said bitterly. “I’m sorry” He said.

“Yea.” Olumide stood up, and left for his room.

That was typical with Albert; always having fun with people’s lives and never had regards for  other people’s feelings. It wasn’t about love as Olumide knew from the onset. He never did loved her, it was all a game and he wasn’t about to lose. He wasn’t sure what Albert made of his outburst but he was glad he said something. He had no idea what came over him, he had never in his life have to shout at anyone like that but he was glad he did. He left Albert alone in his thought. He had always felt responsible for Albert but its high time he started taking control of his life.

Chapter Eleven

Days following that argument, Olumide and Albert had gone quietly in and out of the house. Olumide had no idea what to do about Victoria but as days went by, he felt so distressed and lonely, He wanted so much to talk to his friend, even if its to say hello to her but he couldn’t. He had not been to the office for a week now especially when he had to travel to Port Harcourt for an urgent business meeting. He tried to call her several times but couldn’t sum up the courage to speak. He felt like a total wimp, so frustrated in his inability to prove himself and felt failing all over again.

*****

Albert had resolved to go back to the United Kingdom and make things right for himself, he thought hard those days following their argument and realized how he has hurt those who have loved him unconditionally through all his mischief and deceits. He couldn’t even bring himself to talk to Olumide as he felt ashamed of himself so he left a note for him and also left one for Victoria.

He was at the Airport waiting for his flight to be called when he saw someone that looked very much like Victoria, so he walked up to her to be sure.

“Vicky!” He called out.

“Oh God!” she groaned seeing Albert. “What are you doing here, are you stalking me?” She asked irritated.

“Easy,” He said quickly. “I am not stalking you, I have a flight to catch.” He said.

“Really.” She said confused.

“Yes really,” He answered. “Look, I left a message for you with Olumide,” He said. “I am sorry Vicky, I am so sorry for all I put you through and everything I said; I was selfish and wicked, I don’t deserve you Vicky,” He said looking at her. “I promise I won’t disturb you again, you deserved the best.” He said.

Victoria looked hard at him when she heard those words, she couldn’t believe her ears, she was surprised and shocked at the same time but she knew he was saying the truth.

“Where are you going?” He noticed her passport.

“Me?” she said.

“Yes, you.” he smiled.

“Ghana, I have a job offer there.” She said.

“Really!”

“Yes.” She answered.

“Does Olumide know about this?”

“No.” She said quietly.

“Vicky, are you running away?” He looked suspiciously at her.

“What do you mean?”

“I know,” He said smiling “and I don’t think you should run.” He added.

Then, Victoria heard her flight announced over the speaker.

“Hmm, I guess you will know something about running away, huh.” She pulled her hand luggage together.

“By the way Al, you need Jesus.” She smiled at him as she ran ahead.

“I know,” He replied over at her. “I’m trusting to find him.” he added.

“Good luck.” He said to her.

“You too.” She shouted back over the crowd.

“Thank you Vic.” He added as he watched her leave but she couldn’t have heard that. Then he heard his flight announcement made so he hurried to join the queue.

 
Chapter Twelve.

Olumide got back from his trip and found Albert’s letter to him, he felt so much relieved and grateful for his resolution but he knew he had one more thing to do, he hurried to his office and went straight to Victoria’s office. He was not about to run away again, he was determined to do the right thing and make her realized how much he loved her. He prayed he was not too late.

“Sir,” He heard her secretary called but he ignored and barged into her office but was empty.

“Where’s your boss?” He went back to ask her.

“Sir.” She said confused.

“Where is Victoria?” He asked annoyed.

“She….” She wanted to say something, but remembered the letter that she was supposed to give to him.

“You haven’t been to the office for days now, she asked me to give this to you.” she handed him the letter.

“What!” he said confused taking the letter from her. He tore it open and read the content.

“When was this?” he asked but left her standing not waiting for an answer.

He got into his car and drove to her house, luckily for him, he met her Father driving out.

“Sir.” He ran up to his car.

“Olumide!” Mr. Matthews said surprised.

“Sir, where’s Vicky?” he asked breathing heavily.

“Oh boy!” Mr. Matthews sighed. He switched off his engine.

“I need to teach you some lessons about lateness.” He said at him.

“What!” Olumide was confused.

“If you want my daughter, you need to hurry and get her; I don’t like all these cat and mouse chase.” He said.

“Sir!” he was more confused by the minute.

“She’s gone to Ghana, she went two days ago to start a new job.” Mr. Matthews said.

At those words, Olumide felt so disappointed and sad.

“What are you waiting here for?” Mr. Matthews spoke out.

“Sir!” He shuddered

“Yes, go for her, go home, get your passport and run like never before,” He said. “I will text you her address in few minutes.” He added.

Just then, literally, Olumide took to his heels and ran to his car, as he drove, he called his flight agent to get him the earliest plane ticket to Ghana irrespective of the cost.


Chapter Thirteen. 

Olumide had to wait for almost 15 hours for the next available flight to Ghana. Mr. Matthews was true to his words to text him the address. He had taken a cab from Kotoka International Airport straight to the address he was given. She was still staying at the Holiday Inn not too far from the Airport. He tried to pull himself together as he felt his hands shaking, he had no idea what he would say to her but trust that God would help him out especially to give him the courage, he had specifically prayed about it all throughout his flight.

He paid his fare and walked into the lobby going straight for the lift, he had been told what room she was in.

Victoria heard a knock on her door, thinking it was the room service she had ordered for dinner.

“Coming.” She saida loud as she walked to the door.

Opening the door, she was astonished to see him standing there.

“Olumide!” She gasped.

“What are you doing here?” She asked surprised. “How did you find me?” She asked again.

“Vicky, I am not here to tell you that I am sorry to have kept you waiting all these years and to all that had happened” He started to say. “I am done wasting time.”

Victoria was surprised at his outburst.

“But I have come to tell you that I love you and I will always love you, I love everything about you, I love the way you smile, the way you laugh, I love everything about you honey and I want you to be my wife, my lover, my soul mate, my best friend, my accountant, my business partner, everything you can ever think of.” He looked straight into her eyes. At this time, Victoria was also smiling.

“I don’t care where you move to or where you want to live, I will proudly follow you as long as I am with you,” He smiled softly. “I love you Victoria.” He said.
“I have waited too long and done dwelling in the past. I want to spend the rest of my life with you; I want you to be the mother of my children and trust me, I intend to have many,” He said in the most beautiful smile. “I love so so much Vicky”

Just then, Victoria jumped into his embrace as she hugged him tightly in joy, she felt every barrier and walls between them broken, she felt peace at his words and felt his love.
“I love you too Olumide,” She said in his embrace “I love you so much and I love your daughter, I love everything about you and I am in love with you.” She said as she looked into his eyes.

“I don’t care where we live as long as I am with you.” She added.

She suddenly went to her phone to dial a number.

“What are you doing?” Olumide asked amused.

Victoria waved her hands to him “Yes, this is room 201, Please can you book a reservation for two plan ticket to Nigeria please.” She said.

“When?” the operator asked.

“As soon as possible.” She said as she put down the phone.

“Are you serious?” Olumide said surprised.

“Yes, I am.” She said holding unto him.

“What about the job offer?” He asked.

“What job offer?” She answered winking at him.

“I want to live where our families are; I want our children to grow around their grandparents, cousins and aunties.” She said smiling.

“Yippee!” Olumide said out

“Hurray!” Victoria responded.

“I love you Victoria Matthews.” He lifted her and swirled her around with laughter and joy.

Olumide and Victoria travelled back to Nigeria the following day and got married within two months. They both have been living in their beautiful home now for fifteen years, surrounded by their children and growing stronger in love and friendship. Albert still remained friends to both couples and he eventually found the Lord, you won’t believe if I tell you that he later became a radical Evangelist and waxing strong in the Lord; you never know who the Lord can use, so stop doubting. 

 

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge him and he will guide and direct your path. Don’t give up on yourself and don’t settle for less because you think the Lord is taking his time and nothing seems right. Don’t be pressure into anything you don’t have peace with. Go to God, wait in His presence, no matter what you are seeking, be it marriage, job, opportunities, whatever it is, no matter how big or small that decision is, He can direct your path. There’s no mountain too tall that our God cannot move, there’s no valley too low, He will see you through, there’s no problem too big that Jesus cannot solve, ask in faith and he will pull you through.
The End.

 To all my Reader

Thank you all for your patience in reading the concluding part. I do hope you enjoyed it. Please leave your comments and views below, it can encourage someone. God Bless.

 

© Circlesoflove 2015

 

 

 

 

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Peace Be Still

“I’ve had enough of all this!” Meg screamed out in frustration to her friend, Lizzy.

“I don’t know what else to do again. Things are not just working as they should” She was feeling gloomy.

“They all questioned my decisions, they don’t understand why I have taken these steps, even my parents have asked me to come out of it. I have tried to explain to them countless of times that I am only following the Lord’s instruction but they never understand.” She cried out.

“It’s okay Meg,” Lizzy tried to console her. “Everything would be fine.” She said.

“I feel like giving up and giving in to them. Even the road the Lord has asked me to take does not seem easy, I have come across storms, earthquake and all sort of things. Every road brings new challenges and He still asked me to take it, I clearly heard His instruction, why?” She asked frustrated.

Lizzy inhaled deeply.

“Why is it that even when you clearly hear the Lord’s instruction for your life, when he asks you to take certain decisions, it doesn’t come easy, you find so much accusation, disapproval, discouragement all through the way?” Meg asked.

 

Lizzy looked at her friend with the most loving face, and felt her pain and frustration. “Alright dear,” She said. “Sit, let me share something with you.” opening her bible.

“Remember in the Book of Mark 4 from verse 35. Jesus told His disciples to let them go to the other side of the river and he went to sit in one of the boat at the sea side amongst other boats.”

Meg nodded.

“Now, note first that Jesus gave the instruction for them to go over and he even chose the boat to travel in but after being on the boat, there was a great storm which scared all those aboard and imagine, Jesus was sleeping in the back, undisturbed by the wave or screaming of His disciples. Then, when he was awoken, He commanded the waves to be quiet and the sea to be still”. She looked straight at her friend.

 

“Yes, I know the story.” Meg said wondering where she was going with it.

 

“Why am i saying this?,” Lizzy asked. “Even though he took them on the sea, they still had to face a stormy sea. Sometimes when the Lord tells us to do something does not mean things would be so smooth, we still have to face challenges on the way, discouragement sometimes, disapproval and accusation even from those we love and respect their opinions in our life. This does not mean that the Lord is not with us on that journey even though it may seem as if He is sleeping but He is there, He knows our pain, our trial, our confrontation, he knows everything but the good news is that He is going to pull us through. He will never leave or forsake you. He didn’t take you to the sea to make you drown, no! Everything He does, he does for your own good.” She paused for a moment watching the expression on her friend’s face who was pondering on all those words.

 

“Sweetheart, He didn’t take you on this journey just to leave you to walk alone, he walks with you all through the way” Lizzy said. “Now, listen carefully, what I want you to do now is stand up and command every wave and stormy sea to be still”. She said in a commanding voice. “Speak the peace of God into your life and you will have your peace”. She said as she saw her face in joy.

 

My friends are you facing any challenge in your decision to follow the Lord’s instruction? The fact that there are troubles everywhere does not mean that God is not there with you; it doesn’t mean that he’s unconcerned about our challenges or troubles. He will not leave you or forsake you. God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountain fall into the heart of the sea, though its water roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. The Lord Almighty is with us, the God of Jacob is our fortress. Come and see the works of the Lord, the desolations he has brought in the earth. He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear, he burns the shields with fire. Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted amongst the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

 

Rejoice and be glad for He is here with you, He is holding your hand all through the way and His joy, peace and victory is certain in your life. Now, take time to speak His peace in to your life. Peace be Still!

 

Stay blessed.

 

© Circlesoflove 2015

 

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Finding Love

Chapter One

“Victoria,” her mother, Beatrice called out again. “Victoria!”Victoria felt someone tapping her to wake up.

“Mum,” She moaned, opening her eyes. “What is it?” She rubbed her eyes. “Are you alright?”

Beatrice sighed. “I want to talk to you.”

“Talk,” Victoria asked. She looked at the wall clock, 2:30 am. “Mum, it’s the middle of the night, is everything OK?” She slowly sat up on her bed.

“Are you fully awake?” Her face was stern.

“Yes.” She rubbed her eyes again.

“Now, I want to ask you some series of questions and I want you to be totally honest with me, ok.” She looked straight into her eyes.

“Questions! Alright, I’m listening.” It was her turn to sigh. She couldn’t believe this was happening at this time of the night.

Her mother straightened. “Is there anything you are keeping away from me, anything at all that I should know about?” She asked.

“What!” Victoria moaned. “What do you mean?” She had an idea what her mother was getting at, but was tired of hearing about it.

“Victoria, I am your mother, I love you and care about you.” her voice was broken. “See, my heart is heavy because of you, I can’t sleep and I am not happy, all these are because of you.” She said looking straight into her eyes, feeling stricken.

Victoria took her face away. She couldn’t believe her mother was making her problem all about her.

“You are not getting any younger, in few months now, you will be clocking 36 years old.” Her mother continued. “You have everything any young woman needs in life. You are a beautiful and remarkable young woman; you have a good attitude every man would want in a wife…” She smiled softly.

“Your beauty is flawless…., but despite all of these good qualities in you, I don’t understand why you haven’t found someone?” She paused for a moment seeing the hurt on her daughter’s face. She knew her words were piercing through her, although her intentions were not to make her feel bad about her situation but she had to speak her heart to her.

“I would never do anything to hurt your feeling my dear; everything I am saying is for your own good.” She gently said to her.

“Your immediate younger sister is married already with two kids, let’s say for the sake of arguments that she got married whilst still in the University at a very young age but look at Rachael, your little sister, she also got married last year and you my daughter, you don’t have any man in the picture, what is happening?” Her mother said with a lump of tears “Please tell me?” She whimpered.

“Mum…” Victoria started to say then paused to stare at her mother. She felt her pain but she had no idea what to say or how to start; the tears bunching in her eyes broke her heart.

“Mum, please don’t cry, please….”

“You are the reason for my tears, you are Victoria….” She said in tears. “I need you to tell me the truth…”

“There’s nothing wrong with me Mum but I promise you, things will change for me, everything would be fine…” Victoria tried to comfort her mother.

“I know everything would be fine,” Her Mum said looking up at her. “I know it,” She said again. “See, Albert called me today” Beatrice searched her daughters face.

“What! Why?” She snapped.

“He said he would be coming home in few days time, he’s coming back to you,” She said, excited. “He promised to make things right and start the necessary arrangement for both of you.” She said.

“Mum-

“No, wait my dear, things would be fine. This is all you have always wanted; for him to come back home, back to settle in Nigeria and that’s what he’s doing. He’s already set up some interviews for jobs here in Lagos.” She said.

“Mum, you know there’s nothing more between myself and Albert,” Victoria said fuming. “I don’t have anything with him and it’s a waste of time if he is coming home for me.” She said infuriated.

“But things would be OK now.” Beatrice pleaded.

“No! She shouted in angry, “He cheated on me mum, series of affairs, lying, deception, numerous of call from his so called friends and fiancée to tell me to stay away.” She said angrily.

“My dear, I know and he explained to me. Sweetheart, Albert is a good man and his intentions towards you are good. You have to forgive him, let’s go of the past for a better future together,” She said to her. “Every relationship has its own ups and downs and we must be willing to forgive the other party.”

“There’s no future between us Mum, not now, not ever,” She said bluntly. “Please Mum, forget about Albert, please.” She begged. “God will bring my own husband soon, only be patient.” She said.

Furious and angry, she stood up from the bed and look at her daughter with the most disgusting look.

“Patience! What patience. Can’t you see it, can’t you hear what others are saying about you, me.” She moved away angrily. “I don’t care what you do Victoria, reconcile with him!” She raged at her daughter, walked out and slammed the door.

Victoria was shock at her mother’s behaviour; she felt her heart jumped as she slammed the door.

“Oh God! She said as she felt the tears rolling.

She wanted to shout or even scream but her mouth were shut as she flooded in tears. She wanted to ask God to speak now or she would walk out but her mouth couldn’t utter those words. She expected her mother of all people to understand her plight. She had made up her mind long ago never to have anything to do with Albert again. It did took her several months to get over the heart break and pain of the break up, all she wants now is to move on with her life and no mention of his name to her.

They had dated for almost eight years; two years into their relationship, Albert travelled to the United Kingdom to study for his masters. A few weeks later, he stopped calling, changed his number and ceased every communication with her. Victoria was so scared during these times as she had no means of contacting him; his whole family also resided in the United Kingdom so there was no one she could go to. She had been afraid for several weeks thinking something bad had happened to him.

After few months, he suddenly showed up in Nigeria, apologized for his behaviour and had no solid excuse for his actions. After so much pleading, they continued their relationship but still had been one argument to another, fights and silent treatments. He came home once or twice in a year and during these times, he fought with Victoria who had refused to sleep with him and this enraged him the more. He argued that he loved her and she was already his wife in his own eyes; he saw no reason why she wouldn’t sleep with him if indeed she loved him.

After so much fight and pressure, during his last visit home, Victoria gave in to him, to satisfy his urges and express her love for him. After these incidents, they still continued their series of fight and argument. After almost six years of this struggle and unhealthy relationship, she came to an absolute resolution to leave the relationship but part of her still held unto him; he flew back home just to beg her and promised to make things right by her. But the last straw came when she began to receive series of emails and text message from a lady who claimed to be Albert’s fiancée and wanted her to stay away from her man. She confronted Albert who lied about it but later came clean that she was an ex-girlfriend and the incident happened when both of them were not in terms. Countless of incidents like that gave her no choice but to end the relationship, she called off every tie between them, changed her phone numbers and anyway he could contact her. That was six months ago, she realised the relationship was not healthy and she had to sort out her life and stop living in the illusion of them getting married.

This decision has proven difficult for her but this time, she had the strength of God to help her through, she had grounded herself in the word of God and believes with all of her heart that the plans of God for her life are not an evil or unhealthy relationship but a good future. Victoria drifted off into sleep with this thought.

Chapter Two

Victoria left home very early in the morning to avoid another episode with her Mum, especially now that her father who had always been a shoulder to cry on had travelled on a business trip. She tried to take her mind off the whole scene by loading her brain with so much work at the office since her confident and friend, Olumide has not been to work all day. it’s so funny to have a guy as your best friend but her relationship with Olumide has grown stronger all the years, they both have been through all the battles of life, both fought hard to be where they are today. Years ago, both attended the University of Lagos in Nigeria; Olumide had been the one who introduced her to Albert, his friend and he has been her confider ever since then; each time she has an episode of quarrel and fights with Albert, he was the one she always runs crying too. Both Albert and Olumide had both travelled together for their master’s study in the United Kingdom; although Albert had settled there, never to make Nigeria his home again but Olumide had returned three years later with an eight months old baby to account for.

She had marvelled at this discovery when he told her all that happened back in the United Kingdom; He said that he had a fling with a lady for one night and a few months later, she came telling him she was pregnant for him, all his effort to avoid her was fruitless, eventually since she moved in with him till she delivered his baby and there was no doubt that child was his as she is a total replica of him. Few weeks after the lady delivered his baby, she one day left the house to go buy some baby food and never to return; only for him to find a note she had left saying she wanted a life free of any stress of a child and she was sorry to leave their baby in his care but trust that he would take care of her. That was a shock to his life, after so much effort to care for the baby on his own, also joggling with work, he decided to come back home. He took very his father’s business and has remained good friend with Victoria.

This was four years ago and since then, he has remained strong and a good father to Ayomikun. Olumide has worked hard to bring his father’s business to a high standard which has now become one of the best food organisations in the state; he later begged Victoria to come and head his account department. Since then, they had both work hard in building his company and remained best of friends.

After waiting for Olumide to call her for lunch, Victoria decided to go with or without him, as she slowly ate her chicken pie, she ponders on the fight she had with her mother. She wondered if she should forgive Albert, makeup and probably marry him so she could leave this life of spinsterhood. After all, all her friends are reminder of her solitary not to talk of her sisters, cousins and neighbours who she grew up with. One of the things she regretted in her relationship with Albert was the fact that she had slept with him; she had always said to herself and held unto to was the fact that, she would never sleep with any one who is not her husband but since she had given in to Albert years ago, she had unconsciously held unto him in spite of all his behaviour towards her; but after a while when she had renewed her relationship with the Lord, she understood that although she could not get her virginity back again, she was renewed by the blood of Jesus. She had prayed to break any yoke or covenant keeping her with Albert; that was the starting point of her deliverance from him and since that day, she had held unto the Lord for direction for her life. She knew God’s plan was not Albert for her life, even though her body sometimes wants him to be, her heart was far away from hat notion.

She had to fight herself constantly from the urge of forgiving him to come back but six months down the line, she felt she is totally free from him but now that he’s coming back home and her own mother is totally in support of it brought the fear of uncertainty to her.

“There you are.” Victoria heard Olumide’s voice behind her.

“Oh! Where have you been boss?” she asked smiling.

“Well, taking care of business.” He said sitting down.

“What happened?” She asked.

“Ayomikun had a bit of fever yesterday so I took her to the clinic this morning.” He said

“Oh, is she feeling better now?” She asked concerned.

“Yes, was given some medication so I have asked Blessing to call me if there’s any change.” He answered.

“I pray she feel much better cos I have lots planned for her sleepover this weekend.” She said.

“I’m sure she will; she wouldn’t miss any chance of a sleepover.” He said smiling.

“So what have I missed?” He asked.

“Well, nothing much except my mum woke me up around 2:30 am this morning to talk about Albert. Can you imagine that?” She said looking gloomy.

“Hmm…” He said

“She begged or rather insist that I make up with Albert as he is coming back home for me.” She said irritated.

“Oh!” Olumide said.

“What do you mean oh?” She asked looking suspiciously at him.

“Well…” He tried to say

“Well, what? What do you know?” She asked.

“Albert called to tell me he would be coming home and asked if he could stay at my place.” he answered, avoiding her intense gaze him.

“What! When? She gasped.

“Last week.” He said under his breath.

“And you didn’t tell me.” She said furiously.

“I couldn’t, I’m sorry.” He said

“I thought you had my back.” She said back furiously.

“I’m sorry Vicky.” he said

“You never tell me things about him.” She said angrily

“I’m sorry.” he replied again watching her go on and on in anger

“That was how you never told me anything he does when you were both in the United Kingdom.” She said in anger

“I’m sorry again and again about that.” He replied in a calm tone.

“You never tell me about the way he lived his life, his cheating and lies…..” She continued.

“I’m sorry Vicky.” He said smiling at her as he watched her in frustration.

“Why are you smiling?” She asked

“You know I always smile when you are angry.” He said still smiling.

“But I really need you tell me things you know, I don’t want to be surprised by my mother or anyone else.” She said in a much calm tone.

“You know I have my reservation towards Albert, I don’t want to come in between you two.” He said

“Reservation! You introduced us!” She said back

“Yes and that was a mistake I haven’t forgiven myself of.” He answered.

“It wasn’t your fault,” Victoria said. “You had a good intention then and you didn’t know what he was going to do.” She said back.

“Yea…, so what are you going to do now?” Olumide asked.

“Nothing, you know very much I am through with Albert, it’s my mum I am bothered about.” She said.

“Okay, God will give you the wisdom to deal with it.” He said taking some of her chips on the table.

“So, what did you tell him?” She asked curiously.

“Who?” He asked

“Albert, about your place.” She said

“I said OK.” he answered lowering his head

“You did what?” She snapped.

“I couldn’t say no, I had no excuse.” He said

“So much for having my back.” She said.

“I’m sorry Vicky.” he said.

“OK, I am NOW tired of hearing ‘I’m sorry’, my lunch is over.” She said standing up

“But I just got here,” Olumide said after her.

“You are the boss; you can come into your office any time you like.” She replied walking away while Olumide stood up to run after her.

Chapter Three

Victoria had deliberately taken much work at the office to get home late. She knows her mother has a strong routine of going to bed before 9:00 so getting home late was good for her.

As she quietly tiptoed into the sitting room, she felt a presence there.

“I can see you took it pretty hard on yourself.” She heard her father voice in the dark.

Switching on the light.

“Oh, Dad!” She said gong to hug him.

“I’m so glad to see you, how was your trip?” She asked.

“Fine.” he answered.

“So, you have taken to the night.”

“I’m sorry Dad, just had loads of paper work to do at the office.” She said

“Sweetheart, don’t be offended by you mother.” He said raising an eyebrow

“Oh, she told you.” She sighs.

“Yes, she told me about it and I have asked her to leave you alone. She can’t force you into a relationship with someone you have no interest in.” He said.

“I know Mum is concern but please, tell her to be patient and to keep praying for me.” She said pleading.

“I have told her many times and you have to be patient with whatever she does, ok?” He said.

“Okay, Dad.” She said.

“I’m sure you are tired, go to bed, we will talk more tomorrow dear.” He said.

“Thanks, Dad, good night.” She said standing up

“Good night.” He answered.

Chapter Four

Almost a week later; things have returned to normal in the house, Beatrice had lightened up with her daughter, the unusual happiness she displayed, although Victoria tried to embraced this behaviour but she knows her mother to be rather mischievous sometimes. Today being a Saturday was full of errands; she received a text message from her pastor’s wife to come see her, after then, she has to pick up Ayomikun for another sleep over. Most often when Olumide has to travel for business purposes, she arranges to baby-sit Ayomikun even though he had a nanny, Blessing to look after her but he felt more secure with her staying with Victoria during these time and Victoria has no objection to that, in fact she has grown to love her, even have a smaller bed and set of clothing in her house for her each time she comes to stay.

As she switched off her car engine in front of her pastor’s house; she took a moment to gather her thought before getting out of the car.

“Hello Ma.” She greeted seeing her relaxing in the garden.

“Victoria, hello dear, how nice to have come in such a short notice.” Stella said.

“No problem ma, how are the family?” Victoria asked

“They are doing great, please sit down.” She said.

“Thank you ma.” She replied.

“Alright dear, I think I should go straight to why I called you; I like to talk to you heart to heart, women to women.” She said

“Ok.” She smiled.

“Your mother asked me to speak to you and I’m sure you know why.” She said

Victoria realizing what the talk would be about changed her facial expression.

“Please my dear, I don’t know what the side of your story is, but I do know that your mother is troubled, she’s very sad.” She said.

“I know Ma.” Victoria said quietly. “Ma, I am not happy about everything going on in my life now but I am certain of one thing that the plans of God for my life are good and He will not put me to shame.” She said. “My mother should not try to force someone on me, I know what I want, even though it’s taking so long to achieve but it will all come true.” She said

“Alright,” Stella said. “What about Albert?” She asked.

“Oh Albert!” she sighed. We dated for a very long time, he promised marriage. We did have our issues; he cheated on me countless of time, deceived and lied to me. See ma, I have to move on, I can’t wait for him any longer, you always teach us that a broken relationship is better than a broken marriage. A kind of man like Albert that has taken up to drinking, fornicating and all sorts, I can’t have him as my husband, no Ma.” She said firmly.

“I do understand you dear,” Stella said. “But are you seeing anyone now?”

“Not now ma, but wait and see what the Lord will do.” She said firmly. .

“Alright dear, but please, whatsoever you do, do seek the face of God. I can understand your mother’s urgency and frustration but don’t be discourage, hold unto what you know and don’t compromise your faith for anything.” She said with all seriousness at her.

“I have known you for quite some years now, you are a strong young lady, diligent, hard-working, a woman of prayer and a virtuous one, don’t compromise come what may, OK.” She said smiling at her.

“Thank you Ma, I am so glad you understand.” She said

“My dear, I do understand more that you can imagine; I was once where you are now, I was almost thirty six years of age and had no husband; my boyfriend was not serious about marriage. After so some much begging and talks, he was still not ready. I loved him so much, would do anything, I mean anything to keep him; then, I decided to get pregnant to speed things faster; I wasn’t born again then, just a church goer but desperate, all my friends and their younger sisters were getting married, I was tired of being a bridesmaid or even going to weddings. Eventually, the planned worked. Then I broke the news to my boyfriend that I was pregnant, oh! He was mad, he was so angry; he said I did it deliberately to tie him into this relationship. ‘of course, that was the plan.” She inhaled deeply. “After so much begging and tears; he just took off one day and left town. That was how I became a single mother; things were very difficult, everyone blamed me, the society put a stigma on me, and some even said I was one of those women who is not submissive to their husband, who would rather be a career working woman than a wife under a man’s authority. At some point, I felt hatred toward my own child, an emotion no mother should ever feel but I was angry, confused and battered.

Then few months later, I met with the Lord; that changed everything, my worth, my self esteem. I was redeemed by the Lord, I wasn’t bothered by any condemnation or accusation from people, I knew who I am now; I cherished my baby and fell in love with him, he was a gift from the Lord. I came to a realization of who I am in Christ, not in the eyes of the world. God made everything new for me, all things became beautiful even through my trials and storms, I had peace, I was confident in the Lord. I embraced this new life with so much joy. Then, two years later, I found the love of my life, a man after God’s own heart and the rest you know.” She finished her story smiling in joy.

“Whoa ma, I never knew all these about you, you are a strong woman.” Victoria said in utter amazement.

“The Lord was there with me, he gave me strength when I needed it.” Stella answered.

“So what happened with your boyfriend, did he ever come back for his child?” Victoria asked wondering.

“My dear, Our God is good,” She said smiling. “Yes he did come back, He is my husband now, your pastor.” She said.

Victoria gasped. “What!” She said surprised.

“Yes, your pastor is the same man, He came back to me a changed man, while he was cruising around the world, he met with the Lord, He was renewed by the Lord, and he made all things new. He came back begging me and when he did, I could see the Lord in Him.” She said smiling while Victoria was still in shock.

“My dear, God works in mysterious way, He is always faithful to His own. Now listen dear, I am not saying you should go ahead with Albert, I am asking you to stay in the presence of God to hear from him, He will direct you in the right path,” She said. “Please and please I will say again, stay in his presence, only Him can direct you. I will put you in my prayers too, OK.” She said to her

“Thank you ma.” She said.

“Now, I pray that the peace of God that surpasses all understanding guide and guard your heart in Jesus name.” Stella prayed.

“Amen.” Victoria replied.

“It is well.” Stella said.

“Thank you ma,” Victoria said standing up. “I appreciate this ma.” She said,

“It’s alright dear.”

Chapter Five

As Victoria drove over to pick up Ayomikun, she couldn’t but think about her conversation with her pastor’s wife. She had always admired the love and commitment between the pastor and his wife. She realized that every one has their own past and what they do with it is what matters. She was glad she spoke with her but still felt confused on some part; could she still hope that something new could happen between herself and Albert. What happens if he comes back changed like the pastor, renewed or saved, would that change her feelings towards him, could that make her forgive him, love and both get married? What if he meant what he told her mother, coming back to settle in Nigeria and making arrangement to marry her, after all, that was all she had always wanted from him. At this point, she felt more and more confused as she thought about her own situation. The sound of her phone brought her back from her thought.

“Hey!” She spoke into the phone.

“Where are you?” She heard Olumide’s voice.

“Hold on one minute; let me put on my ear piece.” She said.

“Ok, are you there?” She asked.

“Yes.” Olumide answered.

“Where are you?” He asked again. “Ayomi has packed all her bags since I told her you were coming.” He said laughing.

“Oh, I’m on my way,” She answered laughing. “Tell her I would be there soon.” She said.

“Alright but I’m on my way to the airport now, my flight to Abuja is in one hour.” He said.

“Alright, call me when you get to Port Harcourt.” she said to him.

“You know I will.” Olumide said hanging up.

******

Olumide inhales deeply. He remembered tell her he regretted introducing Albert to her and he meant it. Since they were both friends back in the University, He had tried to put his feelings towards her quiet for fear of destroying the relationship they had together and fear of Victoria rejecting him; so when Albert showed interest and begged him to introduced Victoria to him, he refused at first but after several pressure, Albert succeeded in forcing himself into her life. He had always regretted that in his life, he envied their relationship right from the start and couldn’t do anything about it. It was so difficult for him especially when they both travelled for their masters and he witnessed how Albert had flirt and slept with so many women; his lies, cheating and deceit but he couldn’t bring himself to tell Victoria.

He had tried to forget his feelings for her and move on with his life; but when he came back with his 8 months old baby,Victoria had been the one who stood by him all through the way.

How he loved her but could not bring himself to tell her. He felt so heart broken and angry each time Victoria comes crying to him about Albert but he has always restrained himself from talking. Almost five good years, they had worked together in his company and in their lives, he pretended to be in a on and off relationship with other women which were all lies. Six months ago when Victoria had announced that she has broken up with Albert for good, he had secretly celebrated but couldn’t bring himself to say anything to her, he had waited all these months to build up his courage but had no idea how to start. How would he profess love to His best friend and his friend’s ex girlfriend who he is still working his way up to get back? He felt perplexed.

*****

© Circlesoflove 2015

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Standing Tall

Hello folks,

Today I would specially like to encourage someone this morning, yes you. Have you lost something or perhaps some possession dear to you? You did try your best; worked so hard to hold onto that dream or possession, but it somehow slipped out of your hands. You are now at a point where even those close to you, whose opinion you value are now against you. Those that you would expect their encouragement, words of advice or even support are nowhere with you. You feel alone, tired, dejected and dismayed at all these.

Now, let’s take a look at a story of a great man in the bible. His name was David. He and his man had just returned from battle when they discovered their wives and children had all been taken captive by the Amalekites. “David was greatly distressed because the people spoke of stoning him, for all the people were embittered, each one because of his sons and his daughters. But David strengthened himself in the LORD his God.” 1 Samuel 30: 6.

 

Did you see that? David was at a point where no one was with him, no one would encourage him and tell him everything would be just fine. His friends were all against him, but the bible said, David, encouraged himself in the Lord. Are you at this point in your life; you feel distraught at the things around you. You are discouraged and dismay at the way your life had become. You have lost treasures; possession that means so much to you.

Listen, my friend now is not the time to sit and cry in sorrow, it is time to arise and strengthen yourself in the Lord. It’s time to take charge, take control of the situation and seek the face of the Lord. It is time to say NO to defeat and YES to victory. Do what David did; He encouraged himself in the Lord. He arose and inquiry of the Lord on what to do, ” And David enquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I pursue after this troop? shall I overtake them? And he answered him, Pursue: for thou shalt surely overtake them, and without fail recover all”.

Did you see that? David didn’t try to argue with his men. He didn’t try to plead or try to let them see reasons with him. He didn’t wait to be encouraged or for someone to pat his back and tell him everything will be alright. NO, he arose, encouraged himself and sought the face of the Lord.

What are you doing about that situation? Have you accepted defeat or would you strengthen yourself in the Lord? Will you arise and take what belongs to you? Will you stand tall and tell the enemy no way, you will not have what belongs to me. Are you ready to pursue, overtake and recover all that was taken away from you?

This is a word for someone today. It is time to stand tall and encourage yourself in the Lord. It is time to pursue and take what is yours. You have the upper hand because the Mighty warrior is on your side. The King of all Kings and the strong man in battle is your maker. Hear His word to you, “You whom I have taken from the ends of the earth, And called from its remotest parts, ‘You are My servant, I have chosen you and not rejected you. ‘Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. “Behold, all those who are angered at you will be shamed and dishonoured; Those who contend with you will be as nothing and will perish.” Isaiah 41:10.

I trust you will encourage yourself in the Lord because He is your God. Stall tall friend.

God bless.

 

 

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Free copy of Lost is now over

Hello Folks,

 

Please note that free copy of Lost is now over. If you are interested, you can purchase your copy via Amazon.

 

If you reside in Nigeria, we have a short term payment option available. Please contact us for more details.

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LOST – A NOVEL. FREE GIVEAWAY

Hi There! Have you read Lost - A Novel?

It’s captivating, intriguing and full of suspense.

Lost would be free to DOWNLOAD and read on Amazon from the Wednesday, 24th of June till Friday.

Don’t miss it!!!

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Get Back on Your Knees

I looked at the next chapters of this year and I know what I have to do to get a better result. The months  are going so fast and I am not satisfied at the way things are and want better. I want a change in my life; I want breakthroughs and answers to so many prayers. Are you with me on this? Many of us have looked back to the beginning of this year and are not yet where we want to be; we are still waiting on some answers to prayers, we are hoping things will get better. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

 

Now, this is what I would like to do – Get back down on my Knees in prayers. This is a place where most of us have become lazy. We want things to change but can’t get on our knees to make it happen. Everything in life is now about rush; time to wake up quickly, get to work, get up to do our chores, attend to the kids, attend to our jobs, get back home, too tired and exhausted, go to sleep and then wake up the next morning and continue in this pattern. I am guilty of this too. Folks, laziness in the place of prayer destroy the effectiveness of one’s life. When you stop praying or don’t pray, you are choking your spiritual life. People who do not pray are not breathing. They are clueless of their journey in life, frustrated and disconcerted. The bible says, devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. Colossians 4:2. Are you devoted to prayer?

 

When you don’t pray, you will be confused. This is when you have no idea what turn to take; this is when fear is overwhelming in your life at every storm. But when you pray, you are stronger. A constant communication with God brings clarity and peace to our lives. When the storm comes, you know God is in control, and will not be shaken by it. You will have direction in your life. You will know the Father is on your side; you’ll have an assurance of his favour and mercy in your life. You will not be ignorant of the devises of the enemy; you will be ten steps ahead of them and not be caught by surprise.

You want a change in your life; you have to get back on your knees. You want to be a testifier, you have to start praying. When you inhale prayer, you will exhale praises. Prayer is the key to growth. It’s the key to increase, the key to breakthrough, and success.

Now, I’m not talking about the minute’s prayer we do every morning; you know, the one that has become a routine rather than a communication with the father. We rush into prayer and rush out of prayer. Folks, it’s time to get back to basic; its time to stay right there in the presence of God to hear him speak to us after we have spoken to him. Saying ‘amen’ to prayers offered by friends, through the media and everyone is good, but getting on your knees right in the presence of God is the best.

Prayer brings families together, prayer brings couples together, and it brings the children together. Prayer is a covering of protection over your household. Don’t loose your place of prayer; don’t get too busy to seek the face of God. Don’t be in a rush into the presence of God. Prayer looses bondage and breaks shackles. Prayer delivers those oppressed and heals the broken hearted. Prayer hears the voice of the Lord in the midst of trials of life. Prayer brings peace and joy into our lives. Prayer is the key Folks. David understood the power of prayer. He said in Psalm 18:6, In my distress I called to the Lord; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ears.

If you are going through any difficult time today, it is time to pray. Trials and disappointment can made you sad, and make life miserable to you, but prayer, talking to the father about it can bring a change into your life. He will clothe you with his love, mercy, beauty, peace, joy and bring light into your life.

 

Do you know that the enemy is scared when you get on your knees to pray? They are so frightened and would do everything to make it not happen. They know when you pray, the heavens are attentive to your words; they know when you speak to your father who is the Almighty, He answers. They are scared because they know the power of prayer, and so will keep you far away from it. You wake up late in the morning and can’t be bothered to pray because you are late for work. Guess what, the enemies are laughing because they got what they wanted – you not praying. Prayer is discipline; it has to become your way of life, a part of you. Pray when you are tired from a hard day at work, pray when you are most stressed, pray when the trials is tough and hard on you; pray even when you don’t feel like praying. Pray when you are at peace, when you are happy; pray at all times. Let’s get back to our knees in prayers, get back to the altar of prayer. Psalm 145:18 says, the Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. Do you want the Lord near to you? Call on him in truth.

 

Circles of Love will be doing more different things this month; looking more into the spiritual aspect of our lives, and I hope you will join me in this phase. Let’s get back to praying; staying in His presence to hear from him. We are going to be moving mountains and praying until something happens. Are you with me Folks? Let’s get moving and please, you are welcome to share in this post. Please leave your comments.

 

 

Photo credit: discipleblog

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9-1-1 Calls

Most children from a very young age knows what number to call when they are in trouble.

Do you know what number to call in times of trouble? Like the official emergency number 911, We also have been given a 911 number to call in times of trouble.

Psalms 91:1 says, ‘He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.’

Have you got God’s 911 numbers to call?

Here we go:-

“The sun will not smite you by day, Nor the moon by night. The LORD will protect you from all evil; He will keep your soul. The LORD will guard your going out and your coming in From this time forth and forever.” – Psalm 121:7

“A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you.” – Psalm 91:7

The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust in Him. Nahum 1:7

We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4: 8-9

“For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.” – 2 Timothy 1:7

” I have set the LORD always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” psalm 16:8

“The LORD is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation. 15 Shouts of joy and victory resound in the tents of the righteous: “The LORD’s right hand has done mighty things! 16 The LORD’s right hand is lifted high; the LORD’s right hand has done mighty things!” – Psalm 118:14-16

“I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me.” – Psalm 120:1

“I can do everything through him who gives me strength.” Philippians 4:13

“But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31

“The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song. 8 The LORD is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.” – Psalm 28:7-8

“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” – Isaiah 40:29-31

“The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights” – Habakkuk 3:19

 

911 CALL

Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, hat at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth. Philippians 2:9-10

What are your 911 numbers? Please share below in the comment box. God bless.

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Mom, I think I’m pregnant!

MOM, I THINK I’M PREGNANT!

Those were the words my fourteen years old daughter said to me. I froze up and stared intensely at her. It was a feeling I could not comprehend. I felt I was going to collapse right there.

“Mum….” The sound of her voice jolted me out of my thought. I walked quickly out of the room, and came back immediately. I was disorientated.

“How can it be?” I was blabbing over, and over again. “She can’t be.” I repeatedly said, ignoring the trembling girl before me. “She’s only fourteen, and she’s my daughter.” I whispered to myself. I was talking more to myself, asking questions that I couldn’t answer. This was something that shouldn’t happen to someone like me, someone like my daughter. She was a good girl, all A’s in her studies. She was a very good girl, and I just couldn’t understand what she was saying to me.

Then I flashed an angry look at my daughter, and saw her flooded in tears; not that, I was bothered by the tears, but terrified at what my daughter had become.

“How could you?” I shouted furiously at her. She jolted at the sound of my voice. I went to her, took her by the shoulders and vigorously shook her.

“How could you?” I shouted at her, ignoring the screaming, and fear in her eyes.

“Mummy, please….” she cried out in pain, but I ignored her. She wasn’t innocent as far as I’m concerned, and no amount of tears would get her out of this.

My eyes caught the pregnancy stick on her bed; seeing that made be more furious. “What on earth was she doing with that in the first place, she’s is only fourteen?”

“Mummy….” She pleaded again but I ignored her.

The voice of my husband, her father startled me.

 

What happened next is something I never want to re-visit again. We were so shocked, and mystified when Tess told us she was pregnant. I mean, she’s only fourteen, and couldn’t even imagine her kissing anyone, let alone having sex. We later discovered she’s been sexually active a year ago, and had been on contraceptive pills without my knowledge.

I was so ashamed, and angry at myself for not noticing this in my daughter; I felt I had failed as a mother. Why didn’t I notice? I just assumed my daughter knew what not to do especially when it comes to boys. I expected her to know the truth. That period was the most terrifying of our lives; our only daughter got pregnant at the age of fourteen. I was devastated. Days after this, we had to decide what to do; in fact, I had suggested abortion to my husband. Yes I did. ‘How can a mother could think of that?‘ I honestly don’t know, and could never have imagined such thought in my life but I did. I just wanted things as they were before, you know, not pregnant. I mean, where does a mother go in this situation, what am I expected to do?

My husband became both our pillar; he was strong for us as a family. Yes, he was heartbroken but he became strong for us. He was totally against abortion but we all needed a way out. The first thing he did was to move us all away from our house; he got a transfer to another city to start afresh. The shame would have been unbearable for us all but the shame moved with us. Our daughter brought shame to us. The first few months, I was so angry at myself and my daughter. I made her feel the worst; I wanted her to feel the pain she caused us, I reminded her daily of how she disappointed us, and how she threw her life away. She had confessed she wanted to tell me the first time she had sex, but had been so scared of what I would think of her.

She knew it was wrong but felt good about the whole experience. She said she wanted to feel like a grown woman, and repeatedly explored that until she found herself pregnant. She confessed the young boy responsible for the pregnancy was the same age of her, but my husband thought it wasn’t wise to confront him now. He just wanted us out first.

After five months gone, I was still broken but this time, I had to be broken in the right places. I went to my God; I cried and placed everything before him. I asked him if I were a bad mother, and if I had failed in my responsibility of bringing up my daughter in the right way. I needed answers; I needed to hear something in the midst of my tears, but I heard nothing. I mean, there was total silence in His presence.

 

The following day, I continued and cried before him, I cried, and asked Him to forgive me, most especially to forgive my daughter who had sinned against Him. I asked that he wash her sins away and clothe her once again in righteousness and yet again, there was silence. The next day, I was getting so frustrated but still went into His presence and cried more at my failure as a mother. I confessed I was ashamed of my daughter and even felt so ashamed of myself for feeling this way. I asked Him to forgive me and create a clean heart within me, a heart to love my daughter as I ought to have. I was broken in tears and just needed to hear a word from Him but nothing. He said nothing to me.

Now, the following day, I just stood right there in His presence without uttering any word. I let go my thoughts, worries and everything. I just stood right there in His presence for once without thinking or saying anything. Few minutes into this, I heard his voice saying, ‘Be still, and know that I am God’. That was it, nothing more. At first, I wanted to argue within me; what has that word got to do with all that I have said to him these past few days? I wanted more than that, but nothing, so I decided against arguing in my spirit and just stayed there. I was still before him; I surrendered to Him. I put everything on hold; my fears, worries, shame, disgrace, guilt, disappointment, everything became quiet before him. I mean, I was tired of holding onto the hurt and pain, I just had to let go. In that time, I felt his peace overwhelm me; I felt his power within me, I felt his presence and brokenness of spirit. I felt slain in his presence. I felt my spirit crying out to take away the pain, to take away the anger, the weakness, hate and the fear. I was crying out for restoration. During this time, I knew what he wanted of me, just one thing- to be her mother. A mother who would be there for her daughter no matter the hurt and pain, a mother who would love unconditionally. Just as he loves me despite my weakness and disappointment, just as he would carry me when I feel so weak and exhausted, just as he would love me- he wants me to love my daughter despite all.

I wept in His presence but my heart was at peace. After that encounter, for the first time in months, I spoke to my daughter as a mother should. I listened to her fears. She was scared and so disappointed at what she did. She wept bitterly, and asked me to forgive her. Then, I made up my mind to hold my daughter, to help her through this and back to the Lord. I spoke blessing into her life and reminded her how great and wonderful she is as a daughter. Yes, she made a mistake but I would never judge her by that. I will not look down at her or remind her of her past. She had a great future ahead of her and that she would accomplish by the help of God; nothing will stop the plan of God in her life. She is my daughter after all. The following months were not easy but I stayed with my baby. All through the delivery which was the most excruciating, and painful experience a mother could ever witness, I mean my baby bringing out another baby; crying in pain and there was absolutely nothing I could do about it. Well, she gave birth to a beautiful girl and I became a grand mother.

Ten years down the line, I am a proud mother of a daughter who achieved all her dreams despite all odds. She went back to school and also to college; gained a master degree in Business management, and going on to high places. I am a good mother and nothing can change that. I have learnt from this experience and I have been teaching mothers to have a good relationship with their daughters. Our teenage daughters need their mothers.

They need us to nurture them; a continuous nurturing and love them. Don’t just assume they know things or all is well; talk to them about their day, their friends. Don’t be afraid to talk about the ‘sex talks’ with them. Be open minded about it. Let them get more information from you rather than the cosmopolitan or so called magazines or internet. Explain to them the feelings, the love and all other things they may be experiencing. Teach them through the word of God, tell them the mistakes you made yourself whilst growing up if possible.

 

Teach them the way into the presence of God. Now, if by any chance you have been disappointed; don’t hold on to that pain. Give it to God, let him heal your heart and make you whole. That hatred does not belong there. You need to let go and be a mother to your daughters and Sons. If by any chance they have left home into the world and doing despicable things, pray them back into the presence of God; don’t give up on that child, most importantly, forgive them for the pain and hurt they caused you, for the things they had done. Love them and let God help you through. There is nothing impossible for God to do. No Child is lost if you give them back to the Lord. Let him heal your heart and heal your children.

God bless you.

© Circlesoflove 2013

 

Thank you for reading. Kindly leave your comments below. Thanks.

 

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I’m Getting Paid

Many of us always look forward to the pay check at the end of every working month. We can’t wait to get paid for the hard work we have put into a job. Now imagine after working for several weeks; the early mornings, the long tiring traffic to and from work. How about the days you know you definitely need to take some time off work, but still go because of so much work you have to do or simply because you wouldn’t get paid if you don’t. So now, imagine after all these, you don’t get paid at the end of the month, and then months after. That would be sad. Like a farmer that works on his field, working hard for several months in the sun and rain. Can you imagine how much distress he would be at the end of the season if his field was destroyed by locust, pests and all?

In our lives, we have worked hard to achieve our dreams and aspiration. We expect a good result; the joy, the blessing, the promotion, the success at the end of the day. However, most of us have been deprived from what is rightfully ours. Have you lost so much in life that you wonder if you can gain back?

Today, I speak the promise of God into your life, “I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter, my great army, which I sent among you.” Joel 2:25. Did you get that? It is time to get paid folks. The Lord will repay to you everything that the enemy has taken away from you. Everything that you have lost will be restored back to you in Jesus name.

Every of your hard labour will begin to yield good fruits. The bibles says, we shall be like a tree planted by the streams of water whose leaf will not wither. I pray that your fruit will be bountiful in Jesus name. I decree that this is the appointed time for your restoration. The Lord will repay you folks. The lord said ‘your threshing floors will be full of grain, And the vats will overflow with the new wine and oil. “Then I will make up to you for the years That the swarming locust has eaten, The creeping locust, the stripping locust and the gnawing locust, My great army which I sent among you.  You will have plenty to eat and be satisfied And praise the name of the LORD your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you; Then My people will never be put to shame.’

The Lord will make up for the years you have cried, the years that you have been mocked and scorned. He will make up for the inheritance that was taken forcefully away from you. He will make up for the years you have sowed. He will make up for the years the locusts has eaten, the destroyer has taken away. He will give you double for all the years that you have lost. He will recompensed you, and you will never be put to shame. Would you like to get paid?
I am getting paid Folks. I am restored.

 

Have a wonderful weekend.

 

Kindly leave your comments to encourage other readers. God bless.

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The Final Battle

(Continuation of The Escape! You will need to read The Escape to understand this part)

 

10 years later.

 

Chapter One

 

Seth and his family had settled well in their new home in Michigan. He worked hard to build his own private IT Company while Angela worked as an estate agent. Things were moving well for the whole family. Josh, their son, had grown to be a fine young man and even as a teenager, his depth and knowledge of God had become part of his lifestyle. Since the incident with the saviours ten years ago, the family’s decision to move away from their home was a fresh start for them. Starting a new life was tough at first; they had to travel from one state to another to find a suitable place to settle. However, with time they were able to gain root in the state of Michigan. They found a beautiful house they loved, and a family fellowship they could be part of.

 

“See you later Dad.” Josh hurried towards the door to leave for school.

“Enjoy your day son.” Seth said after him.

Josh chuckled. “Seriously dad, in school.”

“Well, try to.” Seth teased him.

He turned to see Angela walked down the stairs all dressed up to leave for work.

“Honey, have you seen my keys anywhere?” she searched through her bag.

“On the Kitchen table.” Seth answered.

 

The doorbell rang.

 

“I will get it.” Angela said.

 

A young man stood there, he looked taken aback when he saw her.

“Good morning.” The man said.

“Morning, can I help you?” She asked. His face was unfamiliar.

“I’m…here to see…. Mr. Evans…. Please.” He was nervous.

“Excuse me for one second.” Angela closed the door behind her.

“Honey, there’s a man outside. He’s asked for Mr. Evans.”

Seth turned to face her. “I’m not expecting anyone.” He said and walked towards the door.

 

“Hello.” Seth stared at him for one second. The face looked familiar, but he couldn’t figure out where he’d seen him before.

“Hello, My name is David and I need your help.” He looked helpless.

Seth softened his look on him. “Please do come in.” He opened the door wide without a hesitation.

“I’m very sorry to bother you this early morning, but we really do need your help.” “What do you mean by ‘we’?” Angela frowned from where she was standing.

“Please, come sit down,” Seth said, ignoring her question. “Do you want anything to drink?”

Angela raised an eyebrow at him. She knew he was in the habit of ignoring some warning signs; eager to help everyone at any time.

 

“No, thank you.” David cleared his throat as he straightened in his seat. “This may come as a surprise to you,” He looked at the couple. “But I know who you are.”

 

Angela froze as she felt her heart skipped a beat.

 

“What do you mean?” Seth asked.

 

“As I said before, my name is David; David Blake and I used to be with the saviours.”

 

Seth became steeled.

 

“And I know you used to be with the saviours.” He added.

“What?” Seth gasped. “What do you mean…? How…..?” surging to his feet, he walked towards Angela.

 

“I used to be a finder in the ‘saviours’; I was one of their best finders,” his tone was almost of pride. He avoided the intense look on him. “It took me years to locate you, several towns, names……”

 

“Okay, enough! What do you want?” Seth demanded. He realized where he had seen his face before. He was a member of the saviours and Seth knew too well how effective and efficient a finder could be. They are the tools the saviours used to track down any runaway member.

 

Angela’s eyes were smouldering with resentment.

 

David realised the tension in the room; he gathered his visit was about to come to an end if he continued showing off the saviours. “You see, ever since you boldly stood up against the saviours ten years ago, despite all they did to you, and finally escaped.” His face lilted up in joy.  “They did everything to find you but all to a dead end. This gave most of us who wanted out the courage to also leave.” a hint of relief settled on his face.

 

There was so much confusion at the saviours’; they had lost control, many of us fled to unknown destinations, some changed their names, identities and all sorts.” He saw that their faces was softened, so he continued.

 

“The elders were furious; they lashed out in anger and came after us. Although, they found some but after five years, there was complete silence, no one heard from them. But a few months ago, we began to lose contact from some of us who had fled, they just went missing.” he said sadly.

 

Seth had eased up a bit; he walked towards him with a concern look on his face.

 

“Maybe they are still on the run.” He sat down.

 

“No sir, the saviours are back hunting; there has been series of unresolved murders in the news lately. Those were our members. They are back hunting, and this time, it’s bad, very bad.” His hands started to shake uncontrollable. The fear on his face spread all over the room.

 

“We have been terrified ever since these killings began; some have reported been followed.” he tried to steady his hands from trembling.

 

“Seth, can I speak to you?” Angela interrupted, and walked to the kitchen.

Seth responded immediately. “Excuse me.” He said to their guest.

 

He saw Angela pacing in the kitchen. “Honey, I don’t like this.” She said.

“I know….” Seth said confused.

“This could be a trap, we can’t trust him. How did they find us?” she asked, distraught.

“I’m not sure, he said he was a finder.” His answer was more of satisfying the fear building up in him.

She faced him. “We have to do something fast, we have to send him away. He looks mendacious” she whispered, pointing towards the living room.

“What?”

“Deceitful, dishonest, untruthful, disingenuous….”

“I know what you mean.” He snapped.

“Then you have to send him away.” She snapped back.

 

“But they need our help, I can’t do that.”

“Help! This man is talking about unresolved murders, killings…., the saviours are back!” her jaw tightened in fear.

“I can’t just turn my back on them, he needs our help.”

“I don’t know.” She started to pace again, agitated and full of fear. “All I know is that I don’t trust him. Tell him there’s nothing you can do.”

“You know I can’t do that!” Seth said bluntly.

“I knew you wouldn’t listen to me,” her anger was flaring out of control. “I’m going to work.”

“Work!” He threw his hands in the air in frustration. “we have an issue here, and you are going to work?”

“No! YOU have an issue to sort out; I already told you what to do. You can go ahead and do what you do best: ignoring me to start with.”

“What do you mean ignoring you?” Seth asked.

“I’m off to work.” Angela said and walked hastily through the back door.

 

Seth sighed as he was left standing there. He knew he couldn’t just walk away from all these; he had to do something, so he went back to the living room.

“Sorry about that.” he apologized while David just nodded.

“Sir, I know you were not supposed to be found but we really need your help.” his tone of voice was more of a cry for help.

“Alright, I would like to meet everyone,” Seth said. “Let me have your number and I can arrange a venue to meet.”

“Okay, here,” David said, he gave Seth his number. “We do appreciate your help.” He walked towards the door.

“Thank you.”

“Talk to you soon.” Seth closed the door behind.

 

Seth had to sit down for a while to absorb everything that had just happened; he knew within himself that the day was near when they would have to confront the saviours, but this time with an ultimate power in the name of Jesus. As he pondered on all that happened, he couldn’t but also think about his wife. Things had become so distanced between them for months now, they hardly talked as they used to, and he had been so absorbed in his own work and in church that he had forgotten how to be a lover to his wife. He planned to make it up to her this night; he knew they had to start by communicating with each other.

 

 

Chapter Two

 

 

“Are you alright?” Pam asked Angela seeing she just poured away another cup of coffee without drinking it. “Is there something wrong with the coffee?” she asked

“Oh! You noticed.” Angela said. “I don’t think it’s the coffee.” she tried to force a smile.

“Is something bothering you?” Pam asked.

“You know, same thing”. Angela looked wry.

“Oh dear, I thought you planned to talk to him a few days ago?”

“Well, I planned to but I got home late from work and we both have been busy ever since.” Angela said in distress.

“I understand dear,” Pam went to stand by her. “Things always get in the way but you shouldn’t give up honey.” she tried reassuring her.

“Thanks dear.” Angela smile was suitably grateful.

“Why don’t I take you out after work to talk?” Pam asked.

“That would be great.”

 

Since they had been on the run, Pam was the only friend Angela kept in her life. Pam was the sister she never had and she told her everything about herself except the saviours. Angela found it easy to talk to Pam; she told her everything especially now that things had been so dull in her marriage.

 

Although she loved the fact that Seth devoted all of himself to God but she felt lonely. Sometimes she hated herself for thinking this way, she felt jealous of the relationship Seth had with God and felt somehow replaced. She could not understand why that bothered her and since she could not bring herself to talk to Seth, Pam had been the second friend to her. Even with that, the thought of the saviours back in their life scared her most. After all they’ve been through, all she wanted was to have a normal life but she knew Seth would not back away from helping anyone. She feared for the days to come and longed for peace in their lives.

 

Chapter Three

 

Since Seth owned his own IT Company, he could choose to work from home anytime he wanted. After the whole visit in the morning, he had put himself into prayer to seek direction from the Lord. He knew he could not do anything without hearing from the Lord. It was almost four o’clock in the afternoon when he heard Josh come in.

“Hello Dad!” Josh greeted.

“Hey, Son!” Seth greeted from his study.

“Dad, there’s someone here to see you,” Josh came into the study “I found her at front door.” he said.

He felt a tight grip in his chest considering the visitor he had in the morning. “Who?” He asked.

“A Lady.” Josh answered, “She’s waiting in the living room.” Josh said, and went up to his room.

 

He got up quickly, and walked into the living room. To his surprise, he saw Bridget standing there.

“Oh my! Bridget.” Seth grinned with excitement.

“Hello Mr. Evans” Bridget hugged him.

“It’s been awhile, how are you?” Seth asked.

“Very well.” she answered, smiling.

“I thought you were in South Africa,” Seth was still surprised to see her. Since the incidence with Bridget, they had kept in touch. Bridget had been involved in various Christian mission programs and the last he heard from her was her transfer to South Africa working with some AIDS victims.

“Well, I had to come back,” Bridget said looking around. “Where’s Angela?”

“At work,” he answered, “Come, sit down, how have you been? What’s going on?”

 

She straightened and looked straight at him. “It’s time.”

“Time? What do you mean? He glared at her.

“The saviours are hunting and it won’t be long before they find out where you are.” she said.

 

Seth inhaled deeply. He had guessed her visit wasn’t a coincidence.

 

“Yes, I got a visit this morning from a guy named David; he said some of his crew who fled the saviours were missing, some even dead.” he said sadly.

 

She was startled. “David! How did he find you?”

“I don’t know, he said he used to be a finder.”

“We need to be ready, if this man could find you; I am so certain the saviours are not far behind.” Bridget said. “I had a dream about a great battle drawing near and I heard the Lord telling me to come home, to you.” Bridget said.

“Hmm, I am not surprised. Since the visit in the morning, I have been praying and studying the Word and the Lord spoke to me.” He stood up and went to pick a bible on the shelf.

 

“This is what the Lord said; ‘Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full Armour of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood but against rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil” Seth read out.

“Ephesians 6, the Armour of God.” Bridget nodded.

“Yes, but the Lord further explained to me; that for us to be fully ready for this battle, we have to stand firm with the belt of truth buckled round our waist; we shall know the truth and it will set us free, the truth of the Word of God” he said excited as he continued.

 

“Then, the breastplate of righteousness which is a defence; our righteousness is not from the law but through faith in Christ. Also, our feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace; taking up the shield of faith, which we can use to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one; then comes the helmet of Salvation and the sword of the Spirit, praying in the Spirit knowing well that this battle is spiritual and must be fought in God’s strength, depending on the word of God.” he paused and took a moment to catch his breath.

 

“I believe the Lord is with us, the battle is the Lord’s and the victory is ours.” Bridget said.

“We need to start praying, you know.”

“Yes, I agree, we have to be ready.” Bridget added.

“So, where would you be staying?”

“I already booked a reservation at the hotel.”

“Oh, but we have a spare room in the house, why don’t you stay here until we figure out what we are up against?” he offered.

“Are you sure?” she asked.

“Absolutely, Angela wouldn’t mind.” His smile turned tender.

 

Just then, the front door opened, Angela walked in.

“Hello honey!” Seth greeted Angela.

“Hello dear”, she answered. she saw Bridget, surprised to see her. “Bridget!” She went over to give her a hug.

“Hello Angela.” Bridget greeted.

“I thought you were in South Africa.” Angela said excited.

“Well, I was until I was told to come back home.” Bridget said.

“What! What happened?” Angela said in shock.

“Oh no, not them, the Lord spoke to me to come home. It’s about the saviours, they are back hunting.” she said looking over to Seth to explain.

Angela was taken aback in fear

 

“So the man in the morning was…..” .

“Telling the truth.” Seth finished her sentence.

“Oh God! Not again.” she felt the fear overwhelmed her.

“Honey, we have nothing to fear, God is in control.” Seth said while Angela just walked to the Kitchen.

 

“What is going on?” Angela looked straight at Seth who had followed her.

“Honey, we have to prepare ourselves, in fact, I told Bridget she could stay here until all this is over.” Seth said.

“You did what?” Angela shouted.

“Hush…” Seth said.

“Don’t hush me, you didn’t even ask me.” she raged at him.

“I thought……..” Seth tried to say.

 

“Why on earth would you tell the same woman, who tried to kill our son that she could stay in our house?” She shouted in anger

“What!” he gasped in disbelief. “You know better than this.”

“I don’t know any more, I cannot trust anyone Seth, I can’t; not now, not ever,” she shouted. “I am happy she found the Lord but that doesn’t mean I want her staying with us.”

“Why?”

“Why! For God’s sake Seth; the same people who hired her to kill our son many years ago are back hunting and you want her to stay here with us?” she shouted at him.

“So, what do you want me to do?” Seth asked angrily.

“I don’t care what you do Seth, you brought her in here so get her out.” she shouted and ran upstairs to her room.

 

Seth was stunned for a minute, taken aback at his wife’s reaction. After a few minutes to pull himself together, he went back to the living room.

“I am so sorry.” Bridget was already on her feet ready to leave.

“Oh, you heard?” Seth felt embarrassed. “I am so sorry you heard all that, you know…”

“It’s okay, I totally understand.” She went to get her bags. “I should probably leave now.”

“Alright then, let me get my keys to drop you at your hotel.” he offered.

“It’s okay, I would take a cab.” Bridget smiled to relieve him of the tension.

 

 

*****

 

After Bridget had left, Seth went upstairs to Angela.

“What is wrong with you?” he asked angrily, slamming the door hard.

“There’s nothing wrong with me.” Angela shouted back.

“You know Bridget very well and I don’t understand your behaviour.” he said to her.

“Why is it too difficult to understand that I am only protecting my son and it was you who brought all these to us, you started it.” she screamed at him.

“What!” he rattled.

 

“I can no longer do this, I can’t keep running, I can’t do this…; that guy in the morning found us, he knows where we are living…., and the saviours’ killing all over the town, I cannot do this again….  I want a normal life.” she was trembling all over.

“But that is what I am trying to do…”

“You brought this on us and now,” she looked up to him in rage. “you want to start all over again, you want to try to fight them.” she shouted at him.

Seth felt sick to his stomach, he didn’t believe Angela could ever accuse him of all these.

 

“You don’t care about us, all you want to do is go fighting some kind of battle,” Angela continued “Is this how we would continue to live our lives?” she cried out.

“What do you mean that I don’t care about my family? Of course I do; everything I am doing is for your safety, I have kept us safe all these years, you and Josh.” Seth said back.

“I don’t just want safety; rules to keep us safe, watching our backs each time we go out. I want to have a normal life, a normal family, a normal husband that will love and care for me, who will be there for me.” She said in tears.

“What are you saying?” Seth was confused.

“All you do is planning; spending more time with people in the name of helping them out. I want you here with me, by my side.” She shouted.

 

“You are the one who is busy, always has an excuse to come home late every night, you are the one with clients’ appointments and all sorts, nights-out with Pam. Every night is with Pam; Pam this, Pam that.” he shouted at her.

“You made that possible. Each time I am home, all you do is locked up in your study.” she shouted back.

 

Then, there was silence in the room. Angela swallowed hard, and bowed her head in dismay. She blinked back tears, looking off into the distance.

 

“I just want to spend some quiet time with my husband, without any thought of the saviours or some other demons. I want us to do things together as we used to, I want you to carry me along.” she cried out. “I have been enduring this for years on the run and I am tired of all this…”

Seth felt her pain and couldn’t believe he never realized how much she had been hurting.

“Honey…”Seth reached out his hands to her.

“Please don’t touch me, I can’t believe you never noticed any of these.” Her face showed the strain of hurt.

“I’m sorry honey, I didn’t know…” Seth tried to say

“You know what? Just go back to your study.” she whimpered. “Just go and leave me alone.”

 

Seth knew better than to press on, he knew she was angry, so he reluctantly left the room to give her time to calm down. After about two hours downstairs, he decided to go back to the room to speak with her but she was already asleep.

 

 

Chapter Four

 

 

Seth got a call from David the next morning and had arranged to meet with the others. He decided to pick Bridget up from her hotel on his way. Almost an hour into the meeting when they had introduced themselves, Seth and Bridget went on to explain how the Lord could save them from all these, by giving their lives to God and taking on the whole Armour of God. There was uneasiness in the group.

 

“I don’t believe this.” Rick, one of the men there scoffed. “You mean to tell me that while the saviours are fighting with guns, ammunitions, magic and all sorts, we would be fighting with some words. C’mon guys, where on earth does that happen?” he mocked them

 

“Yea, there’s a rumour now that the saviours have acquired more power, how can we compete with that?” Pamela, another member shouted from her seat.

 

“I thought you have a way of protecting us, like a safe house or one of those solid witness protection programs.” David said.

 

“Yea, yea…” some of the members shouting. Everyone started to talk all at once, there was tension in the room.

 

Seth looked at Bridget and sought for a way out. He wanted them to know what he knew, the only way out of all these. He realized these people had been hiding for so many years, they have seen and know what the saviours were capable of. He needed them to hear him out, so he stood up on one of the tables and shouted out for them all to be quiet.

 

He finally got their attention. He inhaled deeply, and started. “Alright, listen guys, our fight is not against flesh and blood but against spiritual powers; the saviours are fighting a spiritual battle and we have to be prepared too. We cannot do this on our own but by the power of God. You asked me to come here…, you wanted my help and I tell you, this is the way, the only way-

 

“I’m out then.” Rick stood up to leave. “I’m sorry, I cannot take this risk” he added while some others made such comments and followed him too.

 

“We need more, I cannot depend on someone I have never met to help me, I need much more than mere words.” Pamela said.

 

 

Bridget went over to them trying to stop them from leaving. “But this is the greater power, we believe by faith that God is real and His power is real too, I have told you my testimony; how he saved me from my sins, he took me in and washed me clean. He can do the same for you.” she pleaded with them. “I have seen His power at work every day, every minute, every second…. Look, think about the air you breathe in, you can’t see it yet you believe in it. God is real and He is here to save us, to expose the saviours and deliver anyone bound by them.”

 

“I’m sorry, I can’t take this chance.” Pamela said and walked out with the group.

 

With the meeting ending in such a disaster, Seth felt discouraged. He wanted so much to let them see the true way but no one could believe him.

 

 

 

Chapter Five

 

 

Angela tried several times to get Seth on the phone but she only got to his voice mail. Frustrated and angry, all she wanted was to hear his voice; she was unaware of the tears running down her face when Pam walked up to her.

“Angela, are you still crying?” Pam asked.

“Oh, sorry.” Angela wiped the tears away.

“Come dear,” Pam brought her to a tight embrace. “It’s okay honey, everything would be alright.” she whispered into her ears.

“I just wanted to tell him how I felt…” Angela sobbed.

“I know dear,” She gently patted her back.

“But why do I feel so guilty?”

 

“It’s not your fault dear, no of this is your fault.”

 

Angela whimpered. “I feel so alone.”

Pam gently rubbed her back. “I am here for you dear, I’m going to take good care of you.” she continued to pat her.

 

Angela rested her head on her shoulders. “He doesn’t get it.” she sobbed.

“They don’t always get it, that’s why we don’t stay with them,” Pam gentle stroke her hair. “That’s why we have to stick together, you know.”

Angela straightened, and wiped the tears away from her eyes.

 

Then, Pam held her hands and looked straight into her eyes. “Listen to me, you don’t ever let any man bring you down.”

 

Angela nodded.

 

“You have to be strong, can’t you see what he’s doing to you.” she locked her eyes with hers.

 

“I…..” Angela stammered.

 

“I love you so much, and I hate what he is doing to you. What they care about is their own feelings and nothing else. Men, husbands are such heartless people that you should never waste your time thinking about them, or loving them. They are pitiful, and good for nothing.

 

Angela felt her words were becoming harsh, so she took her face away, but Pam brought it back quickly, and held her cheeks into her hands.

 

“I love you so much Angela, and I hate to see you like this. I hate what he has done to you.” Her voice was barely a whisper but Angela heard her clearly. She could feel her breathe on her face. She had a strong feeling to pull away from her, but she didn’t.

 

“I love you Angela, and I will do everything to make you happy.” Just in a moment, Pam pressed her lips against her lips.

 

Angela was stunned, it took her a few seconds to come out of the shock. She stepped away from her, and then saw Seth standing at the door.

 

Seth had walked in on them. He stood there in disbelief staring at the ladies.

 

Angela was stunned. She wanted to say something but her mouth suddenly went dry.

 

Seth turned around and walked out of the office.

 

“Seth!” Angela ran after him but he was gone. So she turned back to confront Pam.

“What was that?” she let out a loud groan. “Why did you do that?” she shouted.

“What! I thought you wanted it.” Pam was gobsmacked.

“What? Why would I want that?” She pointed at her and back to herself,

“What about the signals, crying on the shoulders, talks, dinners, and all that time we did spent together?” She was wiggling her hands in the air.

“Whoa, are those signals? Can’t a woman have a normal relationship with a friend? A friend! What happened to having a woman friend?” She went to sit down, and then stood up again and started pacing around the room. She was disoriented.

“I thought you wanted me….., You had issues in your marriage, and you weren’t getting comfort from men but me.” She hit her hands against her chest. “I was the one there for you, every night, every day, every seconds of the day, I am here.”

Angela staggered “Are you serious?” She couldn’t believe what she was hearing. It felt absurd.

“I took care of you where he felt. I made you feel safe, comfort-

“Stop it.” She felt irritated at her words. “Stop it, stop it!” she shouted again.

 

Pam was startled. She did never seen Angela like that.

 

There was silence for a few minutes. Pam went to sit down, shame caused her mouth to tremble.

“I’m sorry.” Pam said.

 

Angela couldn’t believe what just happened. She never thought of Pam as being a lesbian. She knew this was not over, they would definitely have to talk about this, but now, she had to get to Seth. She went to pick up her bag and walked out of the office.

 

She got to the parking lot and found Seth still there, he was standing by his car.

 

“I’m so sorry for what you saw, It’s not what you think”, she started to say. “I don’t know what happened there, one minute she was consoling me, the next minute, you know…” she was flustered. She was searching for the right words to explain this to him, but couldn’t find any.

“I know…” Seth said.

“I never knew she is a….” Angela was saying.

“It’s okay honey, I kind of heard the whole stuff you said after.” Seth said.

“You did?” Angela was relieved.

“I heard you calling me but when I turned back, I overheard all what you said.” he said.

“I am so sorry you had to see that.” Angela pleaded. “I never knew that about her.”

 

“It’s okay dear, I actually came here to take you out to lunch.” he smiled.

“Lunch!” Angela was surprised. It’s been a while they had spent time together.

“Yes, with you.” His smile turned tender. After the meeting with the saviour, he wanted to speak so much with his wife. But he knew he had to make things right with her first.

“See, honey, I am very sorry. I have been so busy in my own little world that I neglected the most important thing,” he said holding her hands. “You know I love you honey and I would never do anything to hurt you or my son, you both are my life.” he searched her face to see if she understood him.

“I am sorry for disrespecting you in our home, forgetting your needs and putting you through all these…, God knows I love you so much…” He looked softly into her eyes.

 

Angela felt relieved at his words.

 

“I’m very sorry for what I said, I didn’t mean it.” Angela said. “I should be proud of you, for how far you have come with your relationship with God, not feel jealous.”

 

“I love you honey and miss us.” She said.

 

“I love you too dear,” Seth said. “Why don’t we go to Lunch, then we can talk about everything.” Seth said with pleading eyes

 

“Oh no dear, I think I want to go home to make love with my husband now, and then we can talk.” she laughed.

 

“Oh, that I would do.” he smiled, opening the passenger’s door for her.

 

Their excitement and naughtiness filled the car as they both giggled all the way home. They couldn’t wait to get into each other’s arms. At least for the next few hours, they would forget about their worries and everything they’ve been through, and just to be close to each other. They both ran out of the car like little children, opened the front door and locked their lips together as they held each other. Just then, they noticed something was wrong, the whole furniture was not in place, tables and sofa were scattered everywhere.

 

 

“Oh God! What happened here?” Angela quivered.

Baffled and surprised, they both went through every room in the house and found all of their things scattered around.

“Oh God!” Angela cried out again. “They have been here.” she shivered.

“Josh!” Seth called out.

“He has football practice after school,” Angela said while Seth went to the phone to call his school. Just then, he saw the beeping light on the telephone.

“There’s a voice mail, It’s probably Josh.” Seth pressed the button.

              

“Hello Seth!” Seth and Angela gasped as they heard a familiar voice they dreaded. It was Patterson.

 

“It’s been a while and I’m sure you are thrilled to hear my voice as I am. I hope you aren’t looking for your son, Josh. He’s in safe hands.” he said and hung up.

 

Seth was in shock as he continued to stare at the phone.

 

“Oh my God!” Angela cried out. “He’s got my son!” She said panicking.

 

Just then Seth started to walk away.

 

“Where are you going?” she shouted in fear, following him.

 

“My computer….. I need my computer.” Seth said.

 

“Why on earth do you need your computer?”

 

“I installed a GPS on Josh’s wrist watch, He always has it on.” He said fumbling through his computer.

 

“What!” When?” Angela asked in shock.

 

“Some couple of months ago, I also installed one on your wedding ring; remember when I took it a while ago to do some work on it?” He said.

 

Angela starred at her ring. “You what!”

 

“Don’t bother, you can’t see it.” Seth said as he searched through his GPS locator on his computer.

 

“Why would you even do such a thing without telling me?” she was furious.

 

Seth was busy searching through the computer.

 

“This is one of the things I have been complaining about, you doing things without letting me know. You live in your own little world and shut me out.”

 

“Seriously Angela, right now.” He looked up quickly at her.

 

Angela saw the fear in his eyes.

 

There was a beeping light from the computer.

 

“Got it.” He said in relief.

 

“You see the green beeping light.” he pointed at it for Angela to see.

 

“That is where he is, it’s a two-hour drive.” he carried his laptop with him, and started to walk.

 

“Where are you going?

 

“To get our Son.” he answered.

 

“Shouldn’t we call the police?”

 

He stopped for a second and made eye contact. “We can’t trust anyone, the police, the government, no one.”

 

“Ok, so what should we do?”

 

“I want you to stay here.” He said to her.

 

“Oh no! I am going with you, He messed with the wrong mother by taking my son.” she shouted in a defensive tone and followed behind Seth.

 

Seth knew better than to argue so they both got into their car and followed the direction on the GPS locator.

 

 

 

Chapter Six

 

Seth and Angela drove along the road, the only sound in the car was the instruction from the GPS; Seth battled with fear and anger as he went on. He was angry at himself for bringing this on his family. Then, he became angry with God for not protecting his son. He felt helpless as tears began to flow down from his eyes; He couldn’t dare to look at his wife as he felt he had failed her too; what she feared most was happening. His heart sank in dismay.

 

Just then, Angela started to speak, but not in the tongues of men; she was speaking in tongues. She remembered the word of God in Romans 8:26, ‘In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groaning too deep for words’. She started with one word, quietly, then, she went further with a sentence, then she began to speak more as the Spirit gave utterance.

 

Seth who was drenched in his tears joined her and began to speak in tongues, the words flowed well accordingly. Both in tears, they began to speak and sing in tongues. As they drove long, they felt the Spirit of God in the car, the whole tiny compartment was filled with the Power of God, they could feel His energy and they knew beyond all doubt that God was there with them. At some point, Seth couldn’t even hear the sound from the GPS, but he knew he was on the right direction. They could not fathom the joy and peace within them, the peace of God was indeed present.

 

As this continued, Seth felt he could hear the Lord speaking to him, then, he heard himself speaking those words out, “The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The Lord is the Stronghold of my life, of whom shall I be afraid? When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh, when my enemies and my foes attack me, they will stumble and fail. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then will I be confident”.

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Seven

 

 

Josh had been on his way home when a black truck pulled behind him. Before he could assess the situation, he saw some men coming out of the van towards him and forcefully carried him into the truck and had driven off. He struggled but they over-powered him and after several seconds of screaming out, he realised that he wasn’t the only one in the truck. He saw some other men and women blindfolded and gagged in the mouth.

 

That was almost five hours ago when they had taken them all into the barn with in the middle of nowhere. They had no idea where they were; but as they were all thrown into the cage and locked in, fear griped them all. Everyone looked at each other since the blindfolds were lifted and they all panicked in fear. The cage was quiet small, a light flickered at the corner of the barn. It was difficult to see what was around them, but the terrible smell and cold air was frightening enough.

 

“Oh God! Bridget whispered to herself when she saw Josh.

“How did they find you?” She asked him.

Josh realized he had seen her in their house the other day.

“I was on my way home from school.” He said fearfully.

“Don’t be afraid Josh, Our God is with us.” she said to him.

“Remember every word your father and mother have taught you, every word you have read in the bible, this is the time to use them all, for God is on our side.” she assured him.

Josh nodded slowly, still trying to comprehend their situation.

“I met with your father this morning but shortly after he left, these men came. He said he was going to see your Mother.” she saw the fear on Josh’s face “But I’m sure they are okay.” she tried to assure him.

 

They both paused for a minute looking at everyone in their tiny cell; they saw they were nervous, fear and uncertainty all over them. Bridget braced herself and stepped out to talk to them.

 

“Listen, everyone,” she started. “Now is that time to decide what you want for yourselves. Our God is able to save us.”

 

“Then, why are you here?” She heard someone say to her.

 

“I do not know but I know beyond all doubt that God is able to save us all from this if we will ask him. Please, let’s give our fears to him.” Bridget said.

 

“You said the same thing this morning and see where we are now.” she heard another saying.

 

“Now, we are at the mercy of the saviours, I say we give in to them, beg them and ask for them to take us back.” he said.

 

“No, we will do no such thing!” Josh spoke out behind the crowd.

 

Josh realized what had happened. He remembered his father had told him several stories about the saviours. He felt his father had been preparing him for this day. Every prayer, teaching and instruction were meant for a day like this. He braced himself, and stepped out. “I am just a boy but I know the true way. My name is Josh Evans and nothing can separate me from my God. He delivered Daniel in the bible and He is able to save us all if we believe.” Josh said full of confidence.

 

“What can we do?” A woman asked. Her hands were trembling.

 

“We only need to believe that God is real and accept Jesus as our Lord and saviour.” Bridget said.

 

Suddenly, the door open and David and the council of elders walked in. Only then did they realize that it had all been a trap all along. David was still working with the saviours. He was still the finest finder and he did sought them out.

 

“Oh, very well!” Patterson applaud. “What do we have here?” He had the hint of arrogant in his voice. His face was taut when he saw Bridget “Hmm, the one that got away. I have been looking for you, and today, I have found you.”

 

 

Bridget swallowed hard. Although she knew she might one day come face to face with Patterson, the same man that gave her the special assignment ten years ago to murder the Evan’s son. She had always been so afraid of him even when she was a member; she felt the old fear creep him, but silently asked the Lord to strengthen her. Then she noticed the activities going on in the barn. They were all dressed in long dark robes with hoods covering their heads. They moved in line while some were lilting the candles on the table in the centre of the barn. Only then could Bridget and the others see the markings all over the barn, pentagram signs on the floor, and different kinds of animals’ skulls all over the place. The whole group shivered in fear when they saw all these.

 

The elders started to hum and chant as they moved in circles. Just then, flames of fire burst out in their midst all around the pentagram. The group trembled in fear as they watched. Bridget, seeing how scared the group had become, started quoting the scriptures.

 

“The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want.” She said loudly for everyone to hear.

“He makes me to lie in green pastures; He leads me besides the still waters, he restores my soul, He leads me in the path of righteousness; For His name’s sake, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil-

 

“Enough!” Patterson roared out. “Shut her up!” he ordered David who unlocked the door and dragged Bridget out.

 

He grabbed her neck with one hand, and held a needle on the other hand. “You know, you should never have left”. He whispered into her ears. Then, he injected her with the needle. “That should keep you quiet.” Suddenly, Bridget slumped on the floor. He carried her and laid her down on the table where the elders just continued to hum and chant.

 

 

 

*****

 

“Turn left at the end of the road.” The GPS announced. There was no more road to drive on. Seth looked around and realised they had to start walking.

 

“We should start walking.” Seth opened the door.

“They should be around here somewhere.” He took his flash light from the car.

 

They both started to walk, with a few minutes they saw a few cars hidden in the middle of the woods.

 

“I think they are here somewhere.” He whispered to Angela.

 

They continued to walk and in a distance they saw a barn in the middle of the thick woods.

“There.” Seth pointed to Angela.

 

“Yes, I can see it.” Angela whispered. They walked carefully through the bushes and found a small window behind the barn. They saw the elders humming and chanting. They saw what looked like a cage but couldn’t see the people in it. Then they saw David standing by the cage, then they understood that he was a spy, he had led the saviours to them.

 

Suddenly, one of the elders started sprinkling incense on someone lying on the table, and then they heard Josh’s voice.

 

“Leave her alone you.” He shouted at them.

 

“Leave her alone…” He shouted again seeing one of them walk towards Bridget with a knife in his hands.

 

“Will you shut him up?” Patterson raged at David.

 

 

Josh stood in confidence and spoke out. “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.”

 

“I said shut him up!” another elder barked at David who was struggling to unlock the cage but to no avail.

 

“I will say of the Lord, He’s my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Josh continued to say.

 

“Shut him up!” Patterson shouted again.

 

“I’m trying, the gate wouldn’t open.” David said struggling to open it.

 

“Surely he will save me from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence.” he continued to say.

 

“Shut him up or I will.” Patterson raged.

 

Suddenly, the door was kicked open. Seth and Angela walked in.

 

“Touch not my anointed and do my prophet no harm.” Seth shouted.

 

Everyone turned to look at the two who just broke in.

 

“Seth!” Patterson was surprised.

 

“Patterson.” Seth murmured. “Why do you insist on evil?” Seth said to him. “All of you.” he said looking at the council.

 

“You defied us.” One of the elders roared out.

 

“And no one goes free.” Another said.

 

“My freedom isn’t in your hands; it is with the Lord and whoever the Lord sets free is free indeed.” Seth said.

 

“Open the gate.” Patterson shouted at David. “Get me his son.” he raged at him.

 

“Can’t you see,” Seth said to them. “There are Angels standing by the gate, your boy can’t get in.” Seth said to them. “You have been overcome by your evil and greed. This day, the Lord is set to put you to shame.” Seth said to him.

 

“Look around you.” Patterson said. “In this place, we are lords and kings. We owned this place, this is our sanctuary and your God cannot rule here.” Patterson said.

 

“You are mistaken; the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof.” Seth said.

 

 

Just then, the council began chanting and reciting some words, Seth could feel a dark power in the barn, yet he was overwhelmed with the Power of God, so he held his wife’s hands and started speaking the words of God; as their chanting became louder, they also spoke louder.

 

“Some trust in chariots and some in horses but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm.” they said aloud.

 

With the council chanting louder, they saw smoke rising within them.

 

Josh was still locked up in the cage with the remainder of the group standing behind him.

 

“Lift up your heads, O ye gates and be lifted up, you ancient doors that the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle.” Josh said in the most authoritative voice. Then, the ground started to shake and the gates were uprooted from the floor and fell to the ground.

 

The council were brought to silence as they saw the gates fall to the ground, the group who were with Josh watched in amazement at this occurrence and followed behind Josh as he went over to his parents.

 

The council held hands together and began to chant. Seth saw this, held hands with his wife and son and there, they knew what they should do. In one accord, they started,

 

“And God exalted Him to the highest place and gave him a Name that is above every name that at the name of JESUS every knee should bow in heaven and on earth and under the earth and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.”

 

Just at the mention of the name of Jesus, the whole place shook vigorously. While the council elders were struggling to stand; Seth and the whole group were firm on the ground, more like, they were not affected. The council kept on struggling to stand and then, what seemed like an explosion burst out in their midst bringing every member to the floor.

 

There was total silence after this explosion, Seth and the group stood firm on the ground and Bridget who was still lying unconscious was not even affected by the explosion. After the smoke had cleared out from the barn, then, they saw the whole picture; the saviours were all on the ground, motionless, dead.

 

Seth hugged his family tightly with joy.

 

“It’s over….” Angela cried out in joy. “It’s all over, thank you Lord. Thank you Jesus…” She kept saying as she held her family. The group were in tears, marvelled at the whole scene; their heart filled with thanks.  Seth went over to where Bridget was laid; it looked like she was fast asleep.

 

“She would be fine.” Seth said to the group, asking them to carry her.

 

“We should all leave.” He said to them.

 

As they walked through the bushes, they felt joy and victory like never before, ‘If the Lord be for us, who can be against us”. Indeed, the Lord had fought for them; He had given them victory and set the bound free. He is the Mighty Warrior and the Consuming fire, yet, He is our Father. They proclaimed.

 

Epilogue

 

It has been over a year since this incidence happened. Government officials could not find any explanations to the death of the council; all they found were evidences of rituals but had no idea what caused the explosion and so labelled the case ‘Unsolved’. They realized the unsolved murder cases were carried out by the saviours and after several investigations; they were able to discover their headquarters and brought a number of them to justices while some are son the run.

 

The whole group dedicated their lives to God, and went to live their lives as normal as possible but with Power of God in them. They never stayed the same as they knew beyond all doubts that indeed, there is a God and He is their true Saviour.

 

Bridget went back to South Africa to continue her mission work and remained closed to the Evans. Angela resolved her issues with her and they became best of friends by emails, phone calls and letters.

 

Seth and Angela have remained closer than ever, serving God. Also, not forgetting their love for each other, which has grown continually each day. They have learnt that nothing can separate them from the love of God and from the love they have for each other. They started a mission to preach against occultism and to help members come to the knowledge of God.

 

Josh experienced something beyond words could say and at his age, a overwhelming encounter with the Lord; he developed a closer relationship with God and remained steadfast in him.

 

Our God is the Mighty Man in battle.

 

 

To my Readers.

 

Thank you all for reading. I hope you enjoyed the concluding part of the escape. Please leave your comments below. God Bless.

 

 

Written by Abimbola CirclesOfLove

 

 

© Circlesoflove 2013

 

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Happy New Month – May

Happy New Month Folks,

May this month be of answered prayers, and sufficient grace for us in Jesus name.

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The Escape

Chapter One

 

Seth Evans watched the prosecutor closely as he questioned the witness. He had studied the case for several months and knew every witness by name. Cecil Brooke, the daughter of the deceased; tears streamed down her face as she was been questioned. She had told the court of how her stepfather shot her mother and left her to die in cold blood.

 

“It’s your witness.” The Judge turned to Seth.

Seth straightened. “Thank you, your Honour.” He stood up and walked towards the docket.

His face was void of any expression; he stood staring at the witness for several seconds. He wanted to intimate her and did succeed in doing just that.

 

Cecil lowered her head to avoid his intense gaze on her.

“Miss Cecil,” Seth started, “you said you saw your stepfather, Jack Edwards shoot your Mother?” he questioned.

 

“Yes, I did.” She answered.

 

He paused and took a long look at her. Her hands were trembling; he knew she was terrified of the whole proceeding and he had no room for any sympathy for her. He had to do his job, and brilliantly for that matter.

 

“Do you love your mother?” He asked.

She looked up to see his face. “Yes, I do.” She whimpered.

He nodded to affirm her answer. He started to walk towards the jury and then turned back to her direction. “Did you kill your Mother?” He blurted out.

 

“What!” She was startled.

“I asked if you killed your mother.” His face was taut.

“No, I did not!” Cecil shrieked.

“Objection.” The prosecution raised. The witness is not on trial here your honour.

“Sustained.” The Judge said. The jury should disregard that question. The judge raised an eyebrow at Seth to warn him.

 

“Okay.” He said in a calm voice. He knew how to indignant any witness. He paused for a moment and then, he continued. “Miss Cecil, would you say you are an angry person?”

She flashed an angry look at him. “No.”

Seth moved closer to her, pretending not to hear her answer. “I’m sorry.”

“No.” She repeated.

“Are you sure?” He asked.

“No, I am not an angry person.” She snapped.

Seth raised an eyebrow. “I see.”

“Objection.” The Prosecutor said. “I don’t see how the witness personality is relevant this case.”

“Your honour, I am trying to establish the witness state of mind at the time of the incident.” Seth countered.

“The defence should go straight to his point and stop wasting the court’s time.” The Judge said firmly.

 

Cecil swallowed hard and took her face away from Seth.

“Isn’t it true that you and your Mother had a fallen out?” He asked.

“What do you mean?”

He went to stand in front of her. “There are people who have seen you arguing and shouting at your mother.” He went back to his desk and took some photographs and presented it to the Judge. He also gave a copy to the prosecutor and then finally to Cecil.

 

Cecil took briefly at the photograph and turned it face down.

 

“I have evidence to proof that your Mother threatened to take you out of her will due to your reckless drinking and drugs problem-

Cecil jumped to her feet. “That’s not true!” She Shouted. “I don’t have any drugs problem and my mother loved me and would never do that to me.” Her breathing had become heavy.

 

“Objection! Speculation. The defence is only making things up your Honour.” The prosecutor shouted from his seat.

“Your Honour, here are the official Will statements stating the changes the deceased made to her will shortly before her death.” Seth passed some copies of the document to the prosecution and also one for the Judge.

 

“Overrule.” The judge said after looking through the documents.

“Thank you, your honour.” Seth smiled. “So, Miss Cecil, I will ask you one more time, did you not kill your mother because she took you out of her Will because you were so angry at her and the only way you could get hold of her money is to kill her and frame your stepfather?” His voice was raised at her; he stood head straight to her with the look of intimidation.

 

“No, I did not!” Cecil shouted back in tears.

“Wasn’t the print found on the gun the same as yours? You were the only one at home when your mother was killed and no one could verify your whereabouts-

Cecil stood up in anger. “No, I did not kill my mother,” she screamed out, “I saw him shoot her; I watched him leave her to die……..,” She cried out. “she was already dead when I went to her; I was confused, I don’t even remember picking up the gun, He killed my mother,” Cecil shouted pointing at her step-father.

 

“Then, tell the court why you were hiding when you claimed my client shot your mother?” He asked, “Tell the Court why no one could account for your whereabouts on the day of the murder? Miss Cecil, tell the court why my client, your stepfather, who took care of you, paid your tuition fees, clothed you and took you in even when your own mother threw you out. Why would he kill his own wife, your mother?” Seth demanded from her but Cecil was quiet, covered in tears and confused.

 

Seth took a long look at her. The only voice in the room was the weeping from the witness. “The defence rest.” He said and walked back to his seat.

 

 

*****

 

 

It took several hours for the jury to deliberate on the case; finally, they were ushered back into the courtroom.

 

“Have you reached the verdict?” The Judge asked.

The foreman stood up. “Yes, your Honour.”

“Would the defendant rise.” The Judge ordered.

Seth stood up, with the defendant.

“How do you find the defendant?” The judge asked the foreman.

“We the jury find the defendant, Mr Jack Edwards not guilty.”  He read.

 

There was uproar as the verdict was read; the defendant jumped in triumph at the news, he shook Seth’s hands.

 

Mr Peterson walked up to Seth. “That’s my boy; I never doubted your ability to win the case.” He patted him on the back.

Seth nodded at the appreciation; he felt that feeling of disgust again. He hated the man so much but there was nothing he could do since he was his boss. Part of him hated what he had become, and the length he went to prove every client’s innocence, knowing full well that they had contributed to every offence one way or the other.

 

Seth also knew Mr Edward had killed his wife; he knew some evidence had been fabricated just to get him off it. He knew what Mr Paterson had to do, what they always do to let the guilty walk away freely. He was certain his client had killed his wife but there was nothing he could do; he was his defence lawyer and indebted to his boss, as they called it. Almost every major case that involved any of ‘the saviours’ were referred to him. The ‘saviours’ is the brotherhood cult he belonged to, in fact, his own father was a member before he died, so did his grandfather and his great-grandfather. Every child is commissioned into the cult at the early age of three, they are all sworn in and expected to do accordingly. Mr Peterson, his boss was one of the elders and he had raised him as his own ever since Seth’s father died of cancer fifteen years ago. He had helped him gain a scholarship into one of best Universities in the United States of America, gave him monthly allowances, paid for his law school and even gave him a job in one of the prestigious law firms in the country. He had everything to be grateful for. He knew he could not question any of his assignments and all duties must be followed accordingly.

 

The saviours controlled eventually everything; the press, law firms, oil, economy, education, financials, everything you can think of, even to the smallest industries.

 

Although, Seth was grateful for his life; for the things he owned, considering he’s just 28 years and has achieved so much, but part of him felt guilty at every crime that had been committed by members of the cult. The call themselves powerful and cannot be touched by anyone, the law or any other organisation. This last case had been carefully dealt with from the beginning; He knew Mr Edwards had killed his wife after she caught him with his mistress and had threatened to divorce and expose his deeds. However, because of the reputation and social connections, Mr Edwards murdered his wife to cover up his act. Seth watched as Peterson spoke to Mr Edwards, He knew they were all glad about the outcome and they expected nothing short of it. He excused himself and left for the day.

 

 

Chapter Two

 

“Honey, could you please attend to Josh,” Angela spoke over from the Kitchen.

“I got him.” Seth went to pick up their son, Josh from the crib. “But you know I leave by 8:00.”

Angela walked into the living room. “It’s Friday night; you promised to spend the night with us at home.” Angela looked disappointed.

“I’m sorry, there is this thing at work I have to attend to.” He lied. “An appointment with a client.”

“An appointment?” She arched a brow. “You are always away from home all day, why can’t you attend to all your appointments during office hours?” she said angrily and took Josh away from him.

Seth inhaled deeply and brushed his hands down his face. “I’m sorry honey; you know I have to work. I will be home soon.” He said, took his jacket and car keys.

 

Angela knew better than to argue with him, he always had work to do. Even though he worked very hard and did provide for the family, she was tired of being second best to him. His devotion to his work was effortless. He even had meetings to attend to at odd hours. Angela loved her husband and would work hard at their marriage but she knew she had to confront him with her suspicions even though it hurt her thinking about them.

 

Chapter Three

 

 

Seth drove into the car park of their meeting; he felt waves of fear washed over him. He had always questioned his position in the society. In as much as he was not comfortable with all that went on in there, there was nothing he could do about it. He feared Angela might be on to him one of these days as his excuses were becoming lame. After almost an hour in the meeting, all he heard were rules over and over again especially Madison’s family who were the main news of the day; the whole family had suddenly left town. Their reasons were unknown, but the elders concluded that Mr Madison had failed to carry out a special assignment which was to influence a legislation that was passed in the Congress and so, out of fear, they had decided to flee rather than face the punishment. A mandate was given to search for them and terminate the whole family as a consequence of defying the saviours, and also as a lesson to other members. There was utter silence as these announcements were made and each member feared for his life, of course, that was the whole idea, to force them into submission.

 

 

Chapter Four

 

 

It’s been nearly a month since the Edwards murder case, and Seth had been given another major case involving a father accused of molesting his son. Even the thought of the case repulsed him. As he read the file over and over again, he felt so much hatred towards his client, another member of his cult and he knew what was to come. He would have to stand in court and question a thirteen-year-old boy about his father molesting him.

 

Another day in Court, Seth watched as the young boy took his seat in the witness box. He couldn’t bear to listen as the prosecution questioned the boy, and the details of what his father had done to him sickened him. He was lost in his thought and didn’t even hear the Judge telling him to question the witness.

 

“I’m sorry your honour.” Seth apologized standing up; he searched through his files to find the note he had written. He knew he was nervous but he was Seth, he never lost a case, he had to control himself and pull himself together.

 

“Mr Evans, are you ready to question your witness?” Seth heard the judge ask again.

“I’m sorry your honour.” He went over to witness box.

“Andy,” he started, “can I call you Andy?” He asked, smiling at the boy.

“Yes,” Andrew said nervously.

“You stated in your statement that your father comes into your room almost every night?”He asked.

Andrew nodded quietly.

“I’m sorry Andy; I would like a yes or no answer please,” Seth said.

“Yes.” he answered quietly.

“What were you doing during those hours?” He asked.

“I was sleeping.” He answered.

“According to your father’s statement to the police, he said and I quote, ‘my son has been bedwetting even to this age, most times in the night, I go over to his room to wake him up. I was merely trying to teach him the routine of waking up in the middle of the night to use the toilet. I never for once touched my son inappropriately’.

Andrew had bowed his head in shame.

“Isn’t that true Andy?” Seth asked.

“Yes, but- he stammered.

“It’s a simple yes or no answer, Andy,” Seth said in a soothing voice and yet intimidating tone. “Isn’t it true that you mistook your father coming in to wake you up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom as him coming in to molest you?” He asked again.

 

This time, Andrew became quiet, he hands were trembling, and tears streamed down his face. He looked from Seth to his father. Seth watched helplessly as the boy swelled up in tears and suddenly rose up in anger.

 

“I know what I know!” Andrew suddenly cried out. “I know what happened those nights.., I am not a baby, and I know how he touched me.” He shouted out in anger. “Most times, I cried, and beg him to stop but he never listened. He hits me so bad and threatened to kill me if I ever to tell anyone. I know what he did to me and it’s not fair, he’s supposed to be my daddy.” He was panting heavily and then broke down into more tears.

 

“You bastard.” The boy’s mother shouted from her seat. “You are a sick, sick bastard.” She shouted, pointing angrily at her husband.

The Judge was shouting to maintain order but the woman wouldn’t listen.

“How can you do that to our son, my son.” She ran to attack him but was restrained by the officers in the courtroom. “Bastard,” She cried out as she was being removed from the courtroom by the security officers.

 

Seth felt sickened and couldn’t even bear to ask any more question. He hated himself for what he was doing to the boy so he just walked back to his seat.

 

“The defence rests.”

 

“Court adjourned.” The Judge said and left the courtroom.

 

As they all stood up to leave the Courtroom, his client turned to him.

“You could have done better,” Mr Robertson said angrily, “You almost got him at his weak point, why did you stop?” He raged. Seth looked at him furiously, so much that he wanted to hit him but had to control himself and walked away.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Five

 

 

The event of today in the court room made Seth very upset. After several attempts to sleep, he decided to go downstairs to the living room. He had never been weakened in court before, he always had everything under control, nothing could get in the way but these days, he had to question himself and his loyalty to his cult. Out of anger, he began to smash things around in the kitchen, using his fist against the wall. He was angry at himself; he knew he was becoming something he hated so much. He was a father who would defend his son, Josh, with his life and would never let any hurt come to him, yet his actions today made him felt like a shame to fatherhood.

 

The noise woke Angela up; she realized Seth wasn’t in bed, so she ran downstairs…

 

“Seth!” She called out quietly.

“Are you alright?” she called out again, then she saw him sitting against the wall.

 

He looked up at her. “I’m sorry I woke you up.” he said quietly.

“What’s wrong honey?” Angela knelt down in front of him.

Seth bowed his head.

“Honey,” She touched his head, “are you alright?”

“I’m alright…” he looked at her and then, took his face away out of shame.

“No, you are not.” She didn’t want to push him hard, but still wanted in on everything that might be wrong. She knew his mind had been occupied for some time. “Don’t hide anything from me, please…”

 

He brushed his hands down his face, and inhaled deeply. “I wish I could let you in Angela…” He swallowed hard. “There are so many things you don’t know.”

 

She cupped his face into her hands, and smiled warmly. “I am here with you Seth; I want to know everything, I am here honey.”

 

Seth was silent for a while, pondering whether to tell Angela or not. He feared she might walk out on him knowing everything. The things he had done, the people he had defended knowing what they truly were was despicable. Then, he looked straight into her eyes; he knew she loved him. She had been the one who held their marriage together all these while. She had sacrificed so much for them, even when he had not been truthful, she has been there for him. He realised he had to tell her the truth. He was tired of the nightmares, the silent voices, the hurt he sees every day in the court room; He needed to tell someone.

 

Seth decided to come clean to her, he told her all about ‘the saviours’, his alliance and loyalty to them; how they serve as lords over them and how tied his commitment was to them. Angela listened very carefully trying hard not to bring out the emotions inside of her.

 

“Oh my God!” She exclaimed when he finished. “Why didn’t you tell me all this?” She whimpered. She was overwhelmed by all she’d just heard, and tried not to panic. She sat back against the wall, and inhaled deeply.

 

“I’m sorry dear, I wanted to but things are very complicated, I didn’t want to involve you, I thought I could handle things my own way,” he said with tears in his eyes. “But it’s getting worse day by day…..”

 

Angela stared at him in utter confusion.

 

Then, she came to sit in front of him. “God! Honey, you need to get out! You have to denounce them.”

 

“I can’t!” Seth said bluntly.

 

“What do you mean that you can’t?”

 

“Because I can’t just walk away, I owe everything to them, my life…” He shook his head in dismay.

 

“Sweetheart, listen to me,” she cupped his face into her hands. “You owe no one anything, not your life, it belongs to God. God is your Saviour, not some occult men that use people to get what they want. They rule the world with fear and brutally. They manipulate the systems. What they make you do is wrong, what they do is horrible. We need to get out.” she looked straight into his eyes.

 

He nodded his head to disagree. “You just don’t understand dear, you don’t know these people we are dealing with.”

 

“I understand you honey. For some months now, I have been trying to get you to go to Church with us. You know the Women’s programme I recently joined, they don’t just do charity for the homeless and all; they teach us the word of God, Jesus came to save us from our sins and so, we have been brought by the righteousness of God, even when we were sinners, he died for us.” Her face lilted up.

 

Seth stood up, and walked away from her. “You believe in all that bullshit.”

 

“Yes Honey,” she said with all seriousness. “I believe Jesus came to die for my Sins, I believe He is my Saviour, He does good things and never asks anything in return, He doesn’t make me do bad things or threaten to disown me if I walk out on him; It’s a free gift dear, all you have to do is accept.” She realized Seth was beginning to listen, so she explained further what it means to be born again, and the Power in the name of Jesus.

 

“Honey, I can’t begin to tell you how much peace there is in Christ, He sets you free from every bondage of the enemy, gives you a new life and a new identity in Him.” she said with excitement.

“You think he can help me with ‘the saviour’s’? He asked soberly.

 

“Yes, He will; I’m not saying it’s going to be easy but we have got to trust Him and dear, I am going to be here with you, we are in this together.” She held his hands firmly.

 

“Oh my dear…” Seth held Angela into his arms. “You don’t know how long I have been waiting to tell you all these, I was scared you would leave me and yet, you are here telling me there’s a way out, you love me still; Thank you honey…” He hugged her tightly. “I love you dear, thank you so much…”

 

“I love you honey and that’s not going to change; right now, we need a higher power to help us, so dear, are you ready to accept Jesus as your Lord and personal Saviour?” she asked in tears of joy.

 

“Oh yes I am!” Seth answered her.

 

Right there, Angela led her husband to the Lord, they prayed and cried together. Her prayers had been answered. Ever since she came into Christ, she had tried to share the same experience with her husband but he always put her off, she had begged him to follow them to church but he bluntly refused. Although he had never stopped them from going, but never been fully interested until now. After they had prayed, cried and talked, they went back to bed.

 

 

 

 

Chapter Six

 

 

Seth woke up that Monday morning with a feeling of peace he had never felt before; although he had not fully comprehended what being a born again Christian was all about; but he knew he was sure in it. Over the weekend, he searched through the bible Angela gave him. He wanted to know more, and the deeper he read, he knew without doubt that he was in the right place. He also followed Angela and their son to church on Sunday morning. It was truly refreshing and the peace he felt in his heart was indescribable. He had never felt that free in many years, he knew God was with him, and he in Him. It was another Monday morning, and he left for work as usual.

 

“Sir, the director wants you in his office.” he heard his secretary from the intercom.

“I’ll be right there.” he answered.

 

As he walked to Peterson’s office, he suddenly felt fear wash all over him. He knew he was going to talk about the Robertson case, probably his client had reported him.

 

“Good morning Sir.” he greeted.

“Sit!” Peterson ordered without looking at him.

“The Robertson case. I was told things were a little bit rough the last time in court,” he said with an unpleasant tone. “Nevertheless, I know you will still pull it off.” he continued. “Now, we have acquired some new evidence that will pave way for us if you do your part well.” he passed some documents to Seth.

 

“That is a statement from the little sister. Andrew has been molesting his younger sister and you know how that goes.” he smiled knowing fully well the documents were manipulated.

 

Seth read the document carefully and the words disgusted him, he felt sick to the stomach. He could not believe they manipulated a child into giving this statement, making false allegation against his own brother. ‘Why would anyone do this to children?’ their lies to make Andrew lose credibility before the jury.

 

“I won’t do this Sir!” Seth voiced out

“What? You can’t or you won’t?” Peterson was confused.

“I won’t do this sir, I cannot use this against a thirteen years old boy, he’s only a kid, and How far do we want to go to destroy a kid’s life?” he asked angrily.

“That’s not your business Seth, you do as I want.” he raised his voice at him. “Your loyalty to us is the ultimate.” he added.

He threw the file on the table. “I am through with loyalty, I can’t keep destroying lives all in the name of loyalty.” He retorted.

“What nonsense are you saying boy?” Peterson asked furiously.

“I cannot keep bailing murderers, thieves, criminals out all for the sake of loyalty.” Seth said back.

“No, you will!” Peterson shouted back. “We are the reason you are here now, you owe us everything, I mean, everything.” He said. “So, Seth, you will do everything we want, I don’t care about what conscience you suddenly have.” He shouted at him.

 

“I won’t!” Seth shouted back. “I quit!” He said and walked out of his office.

“You dare not!” He heard Peterson’s voice behind him but he kept walking, went into his office to pick up his jacket and suitcase. Seth had no idea where the confidence came from to stand up against Peterson but he knew for sure that he didn’t want to continue in this lie. He won’t stand and defend the criminals all in the name of loyalty.

 

 

 

Chapter Seven

 

 

When Seth got home, he went into the Kitchen and found Angela attending to Josh, so he tiptoed there, carried her up and kissed her.

 

“Oh Seth!” she exclaimed “What’s going on?” She asked smiling.

“I quit!”

“What!” she asked confused.

“I quit honey, I’m finally out.” he said excited.

“Oh, honey.” she pulled him to herself. “I am so proud of you.” Angela said.

“Yes Honey, you don’t have to worry about anything, I will start looking for another job.” he carried Josh out of his chair.

“I know honey, I know God would provide all our needs.” Angela said smiling.

*****

 

Seth gave himself a week before he started searching for a new job; he got a couple of interviews the following week and prayed for the best. During this time at home, he devoted himself to knowing the power of God; he studied the bible over and over again, trying to get a hold of things. About two weeks after, he got calls from Mr. Peterson and some elders of the cult, they urged him to come back to them, forgiving him for walking out but he refused. When they realized he was determined to stay out, they threatened him and his family but Seth never gave in to them.

One day, he came back home from an interview.

 

“Honey, I’m back.” he called out.

“How was it?” Angela asked.

“Fine, I hope; they said they will get back to me within three days but it was a good interview.” He said.

“God would grant us favour.” Angela gave him cup of iced tea.

“Honey, I went out to the supermarket today but our card was declined.” she said confused.

“Declined? That can’t be.” Seth picked up his phone to call the bank.

 

After several minutes on hold, “Hello, Wallis Bank.” he heard the operator.

“Yes, my name is Seth Evans.” he said.

“How may I help you Mr Evans?”

“I would like to know my balance please?” he said.

“Account number please?” the operator asked.

“786469392.” Seth said.

“Sorry Sir, I can’t seem to find any account with that number.”

Seth repeated the account number again, his date of birth and address to help them find his account but to no avail.

“Sir, are you sure you are calling the right bank?” the operator asked

“What sort of question is that, I know my bank, I have my bank card here, what sort of silly joke is this?” he said angrily. “The last I checked, I had over $100,000 in my account, now you are telling me I got the wrong bank.” he shouted.

“I’m sorry Sir, I can’t seem to find any name Seth Evans or the account number you gave me, I’m sorry, I can’t help you.” the operator said and hung up

 

“Hello, hello, hello…” Seth shouted at the receiver.

“What is it?” Angela asked confused.

“My bank does not seem to have any record of my account; it’s all gone” he said as he slumped on the couch, “all gone.” he groaned.

 

“That’s impossible, is it?” Angela whimpered. “What’s happening? How?”

“The saviour.” Seth said. “They did all these, they think they can shake me.” he got up and picked up his car key.

“Where are you going?” Angela asked going over to stop him.

“I’m going to see Peterson, he did all these.” he answered angrily. “That was my money, I worked hard for that.”

“No, you are not going anywhere.” Angela shouted in fear, and went to stand against the door. “Don’t you see what they are doing?” she cried out. “We cannot fight these people physically dear, remember, we wrestle not against flesh and blood but against principalities, rulers of darkness in High places.” She held his hands, and slowly took the car keys away from him. “Please honey, don’t go over to them. God will sort us out, He would provide for our needs and He will provide you with a good job.” she said in tears.

“We can even move to another state, let’s start afresh.” she said.

 

“I am not moving anywhere, this is my home, and no one will make me leave.” he shouted.

 

Angela felt sad. Tears sprang to her eyes.

 

“They drained all my account, my own money and now you want me to run away from them.” he said angrily.

“Honey, this is not our battle, it is the Lord.” Angela said.

“So, how do you suppose we survive?” he asked.

“I’ve got some money saved, we can use that until we get a new job.” she said.

“How much?” Seth asked.

“About $5,000.” she said.

“$5,000!” Seth chuckled and went to sit down.

 

 

That night, Seth laid awake in his bed thinking. He couldn’t believe Patterson could go to this length. He had worked selflessly for him for many years, and the money was his. He felt he couldn’t just let it go, and he had to get all his money back. Suddenly, he heard some noise downstairs, and went to check it out. The living room was dark but he was sure there was definitely someone there so he switched on the light and there, he found Patterson sitting comfortably on the couch.

 

“What are you doing here?” he was shocked.

Patterson chuckled. “Just thought I should drop by.” He smiled arrogantly.

“You are not welcome here.” Seth shouted. “I want you to leave my house now!”

“Hush…” He whispered, “You don’t want to wake up neighbours or the little boy sleeping upstairs.” He pointed up.

“Don’t you dare?” Seth straightened, and stood a step closer to him.

Patterson stood up. “I trained you so well Son, I invested so much in you, now, you just want to walk away, you should know better. You cannot make it anywhere without us. We own everything.” He said.

 

Seth looked at him and felt so much confidence and said “I have a greater Power now, He that is in me is greater than he that is in the world, with God, I can do all things.”

 

Patterson roared out in laughter. “You believe in that nonsense.”

 

“I believe in Jesus Christ, I believe he has forgiven me and cleansed me of all my sins, I know that no weapon that is fashioned against me shall prosper and every tongue shall be condemned.” he said confidently to him. “I know what I know.” he added.

 

“You are full of shit Seth, we will squeeze you so hard, we will haunt you and destroy everything you have.” he raged at him.

 

“You can do nothing to me Patterson; even if you take my money away, things that I owe, you will never take the freedom I found in Christ. You are all lies, full of deceit and wickedness.” He said back at him.

 

“You will not survive, not anywhere in this world. With us, you can roar high, without us, even homeless man is much better.” He gestured with his hands.

 

“You are wrong, so wrong.” He roared at him. “I will bring you down; every elder of your demonic cult are going down.” He sneered at him.

 

Patterson was full of rage. He looked hard at him. “We are on your case Seth, every move you make, we will know about it, everywhere you go, we will follow you, every plans you make, we are very aware of it, in fact, every food you eat, we surely will know about it. I will see to it personally that you don’t make a cent in this country, until you come crawling back to us, begging us to pick up the crumbs we can give to you.”

 

Seth felt so much strength and faith regardless of Peterson’s threat. He chuckled and laughed at his face. “You think you know it all,” he said to him. “There is a God whose awesomeness you cannot comprehend, whose greatness is beyond what you can fathom, whose riches is more than the grains of sand, His power is greater than the Universe itself, He is the God that I serve.” Seth said smiling.

 

 

“I can see you’ve gone mad!” Peterson shouted at him in rage walking towards the front door, “this is not the last you will hear from us.” he pointed angrily at him, and then walked out.

 

Seth watched through the window as he drove out angrily. He felt so confident within him, although he knew he has not heard the last of them as he had said; the saviour will go to any length to intimidate him and pull him down but he knows beyond all reasonable doubt that the battle is of the Lord and the victory is his.

 

Â

Chapter Eight

 

After a few days of this incident, Seth called the firm where he applied to but unfortunately, they could not offer him a job. He was so angry but determined to keep his faith strong; he encouraged himself in the Lord and believed that God is faithful till the end. Then, he got a call from his Mum.

 

“Hello.” Seth said.

“Seth dear.” Sylvia, his Mum called.

“Hello mum, are you alright?” he asked.

“Oh dear, you have to go back to them; you are safe there.” Her voice shook in despair.

“Mum, what are you talking about?”

“Seth, listen and listen carefully, these people are very dangerous; please dear, do as they say.” She said wearily.

Then, he realised what his mum was talking about. Her mum had always referred to the saviours as his dad’s associate when he was little. Mr. Patterson was close to them after the death of his father, and his mum never said ill of them.

 

“Mum, there’s a better way, I found a better way.”

 

“What you do mean?” Her voice was tear-choked.

 

“I mean, I found a better way. The saviours are all about lie, deceit and wickedness.”

 

“Seth!” she exclaimed. “You need to be very careful at the way you speak about them, they are everywhere.” She whispered. “I don’t want anything to happen to you, you know…..

 

Then he heard the doorbell ring at the other end of the phone.

 

“Let me get the door.” she said.

 

Seconds later, Seth could hear his mother arguing with someone. ‘I told you I would speak to him, please give him some time.’ Seth heard his mother speaking to someone but couldn’t make the rest of the words as he started to hear her scream.

 

“Mum, who’s there? Seth shouted, but the phone went dead. He tried calling back, but the phone was disconnected, at that, he picked up his car keys and ran out of the house. As he raced down to his Mother’s house, he feared for the worst, praying for her safety.

 

It took him almost half an hour to drive down to her place. He ran out of the car leaving his door open; he discovered the front door of the house was opened. He called out for her but there was no answer, so he went through the living room, kitchen, and garden but there was no sign of her. Then, he ran upstairs and found her lying on the bed.

 

“Mum!” he called her but no response.

“Mum!” he touched her but she didn’t move. He touched her again and discovered she was cold.

 

“Oh God!” He checked her pulse. “Mum, please.” There was no pulse on her.

“This is too much Lord,” he cried out. “Why Lord……” he whimpered as he held his mother.

“I could have told her about you Lord, you could have given me more time…” he cried out.

 

 

The ambulance arrived to take her body to the hospital. It was later concluded that she had died of heart attack but Seth knew better. He knew the saviours were involved, they killed his mother. They knew how much he loved her and so, went after her. Seth felt he had failed her in some ways, if only he had taken their threat seriously, if only he had protected his mother, he had failed her.

 

 

Chapter Nine

Â

The days went by slowly. Seth was saddened about the death of his mother, and felt strong anger towards the saviour.

 

It was the day of the funeral, He had noticed some members of the saviours present there.

 

“How dare you?” He shouted at Peterson and the elders. “What are you doing here?” he demanded.

“Son, we are here to pay our respect.” Peterson said.

“Don’t you dare call me son; I am not your son and I don’t want you here.” He shouted.

“Your Mother was a dear friend.” Peterson spoke on behalf of the elders while they all nodded in agreement.

“Your friend!” he chuckled “Your friend and you killed her.” he shouted at them.

“Don’t say such a thing, we don’t kill people.” Peterson said.

“I know what you did, all of you,” he looked angrily at them all. “I know you are full of evil as your father himself is of the devil but I bet you all, you will regret this.” he said and walked away from there.

 

He didn’t want to disrespect his mother by making a scene, he knew their coming there was just to humiliate him and he won’t give them the satisfaction. He joined his family as the ceremony continued.

 

 

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Chapter Ten

 

 

A few months later, things had been so difficult for them, Seth couldn’t get a job, he even went so low to apply for a security guard position and he was turned down. Angela decided to search for a job herself; she eventually got a part time position in a day care centre to support them until something better comes. In all these, they continued to grow in fellowship with God, they found peace and joy and knew that God was with them; he had been providing all their needs according to his riches. His blessings filled their heart and they remained steadfast through these trials.

 

“Honey, it would be fun.” Seth said to his wife. “We haven’t gone out in like forever.”

“I don’t know,” Angela said. “We don’t have enough to go out.” she said.

“Sweetheart, we don’t have to go out to a fancy restaurant, even burgers; I just want to spend some time with you.” he said.

“Alright honey, how about Josh? She asked.

“I took care of that, I requested a baby sitter from the youth centre down the road; she should be here any minute now”. he said excited.

“Are you sure?” She asked.

“Yes dear, everything is been taken care of.” Seth said.

“Ok then.” she said smiling, “I don’t want to disappoint you seeing you’ve already planned everything.” she added.

 

Seth was glad he could take his wife out for dinner, nothing too fancy but spending the time together meant a lot to him. They went for drinks and spent most of their time walking in the park. They needed that time alone, falling in love over and over again.

As they drove back home, they noticed police cars were all over their street, ambulances and fire department. They were stopped along the road as no cars were allowed entrance. Angela and Seth got down from their car and started to run towards their house. Their heart skipped a beat when they saw their house on fire.

 

“Oh God, my Son is in there…” Angela shouted, running into the house but was stopped by one of the police offices, but Seth ran past them while some officers ran after him.

“Please…” he pleaded, “My son and baby sitter are in there.” he cried out. “He’s only three…” he cried out. “Please….” He cried, struggling with the men as they held onto him tightly.

“I’m sorry Sir, I can’t let you go in; the whole house is in flames.” He pulled him away.

“Oh God!” Angela cried. “Not my son…” she went to her husband.  “See what you did, I told you Seth, told you to let’s move far away from here but you knew better…” She cried out hitting him on the chest.

“Angela…”Seth tried to hold her

“Don’t touch me!” she jerked away from him.

“Oh God, What have I done, you promised you will keep in perfect peace, those who trust in you….” she cried out. “Why haven’t you kept your promise Lord?”

 

 

After several hours of putting out the fire, the building was thick black. Windows are broken all over, some part of the house had collapsed all on the ground. The police drove Seth and Angela to one of the hotel to stay for the night as they continued to search the whole house knowing well that, their Son was long dead but assured them to bring out his body or anything that remained of him.

 

They both cried all through the night.

 

 

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In the morning, a knock was heard on the door of the hotel room. Seth reluctantly stood to answer it only to find Bridget, the baby sitter standing here with Josh in her arms.

 

“Oh my God! Oh my God!!” he shrieked, and took Josh quickly away from her.

 

Angela ran to the door.

 

She screamed when she saw Josh, and took him away from Seth. “My baby,” she hugged him tightly, and kissed all over his face. Seth held his son and wife together almost forgetting Bridget. They wept as they held their Son in joy.

 

“What happened?” Seth finally asked, and took Bridget by the hand into the room.

“Please, tell us what happened?” he asked again.

 

All of a sudden, Bridget was flooded in tears.

 

“Please, don’t be sad, we are happy that you both are alive.” Seth said, but Bridget continued in tears.

 

“I am so sorry…” she wailed. “Please forgive me.” she begged.

 

“Dear, we are not angry with you, we are glad to see you both alive.” Angela went to her. “Did you leave the house before the fire started, what happened?”

 

Bridget whimpered, she couldn’t utter any word.

“It’s ok Bridget, we are just glad everyone is ok.” He tried to assure her.

 

“No, you don’t understand.” Bridget whimpered. “I was sent to do this.”

 

“What do you mean?” Seth straightened.

 

“The saviours sent me!” she cried out, and covered her mouth.

 

Angela stood up quickly, and held her son tighter to herself.

 

Bridget swallowed hard, and continued. “They said they wanted to bring you down, take you off from the face of the earth. Destroy all you have one by one. They waited patiently for you, they monitored your calls to the youth centre and knew you would need a baby sitter, they arranged everything. They asked me to set the house on fire.” she said in tears.

 

Angela let out a sob, but covered her mouth from screaming out.

 

Seth felt tears streaming down his face and made no attempt to wipe it. He stood there unable to move or utter any word.

 

“You can’t defy the saviours, you dare not question their authority. I had no choice.” She sobbed.

 

“Why?” Seth whispered, but Bridget heard him as she had looked up to see his face.

 

“They are everywhere. You cannot just walk out on them, and expect to have a normal life.” She answered.

 

“So you set our house on fire?” Seth shouted.

 

“I had no choice. I had to obey every instruction.” She shouted back in tears.

 

He walked angrily to her. “You were supposed to watch our son, keep him safe.” He raged out in anger.

 

“They are the saviours, I had no choice.” She screamed out.

 

“You had a choice.” He shouted back.

 

“Seth!” Angela shouted to get his attention.

 

He turned to her direction, and saw the fear on her face.

“Please…..” She whimpered. “Josh is here, he’s here with us.” she gently rubbed their son’s back as he was asleep. “He’s alive honey….”

 

Seth inhaled deeply, and walked away from Bridget. He went to stand against the wall.

 

There was silence in the room for a few minutes, then Bridget continued.

 

“I did as they asked, I started the fire in the Kitchen. Josh was asleep in the room.” She took a minute to look at their face and saw the horror in their eyes.

 

“But as I was leaving the house, I saw a man walked into the house.” her face suddenly lilted. “He just walked passed me without saying a word. His face was glittered up in light. He walked fearlessly in the air, more like, floating. He looked like a man, but not like a man. His clothes were not like normal clothing, more like clothed in cloud.

 

I was stood there shocked. I just stood there and watched him go into the house.

 

Seth straightened again, he couldn’t understand what she was saying.

 

“Just then, he came out of the house carrying Josh with him; so I ran after him…, I asked him what he was doing, who he was but he just walked on. He didn’t answer, he just kept going so I followed him. Suddenly, I realised I was lost. I had no idea where I was. The street weren’t like ours, it looked like I was on another planet, I don’t know how my feet carried me after him, and all I knew was that I was following him.”

 

Angela carefully laid their son on the bed by her side.

 

Bridget continued. “Then, I followed him into a house, a mighty house filled with so much dazzling of light, I couldn’t comprehend the description and beauty of that place. It was beautiful, peaceful and warm. The man laid Josh down on the bed and then looked hard at me. I became crippled in fear; my feet were weak that I could no longer stand. I was brought down to my knees.

 

He came towards me, and then I saw myself, more like a reflection and that scared me, all I saw were pure evil and darkness. I shouted out in fear and begged him not to come any closer but he did and then, he touched me. He touched my face.”

 

Seth could no longer stand, so he went to Angela and sat by her side. He had never heard such talk before, but something in he believed what she was saying. He was eager to hear more.

 

A broad smile suddenly appeared on Bridget’s face. “I felt illuminated, I felt peace, love, and compassion. Then, he began to speak to me, it wasn’t in English or any language I could understand. He spoke in an unknown language and yet, I could understand him. He said my sins have been paid off, he said he loved me so much that he died in my place so I can be free.

 

As he continued to speak, I wept and wept. He held my hands and told me that he loves me. I begged him to forgive me of all my wrongs and let me stay right there with him but He insisted I had to go back; he said I have to tell others what I have seen and received. I had seen how filthy and dirty my clothes were when we first came into the house but when I cried for mercy, I noticed my clothes became dazzling white, and spotless.

 

After a while, he said it was time to go; he carried Josh and held my hand and then, I found myself standing at your door.

 

Seth and Angela were soaked in tears as they listened to Bridget, the girl they knew nothing about and yet felt connected to her. They were supposed to hate her but yet felt love towards her. They knew it was the Lord, he saved their son.

 

“I am very sorry…., please forgive me” Bridget cried out to them. “The saviours used and manipulated me into this evil but I know better now, I know a better way…” She said in tears.

 

“If it has not been for the Lord who was on our side” Seth smiled at her. “We forgive you dear, and we don’t hold anything against you.” Seth added.

 

“I’m not sure what to say…” Angela said in tears. “I mean….” She whimpered. “I am grateful to God for giving me back my son…” She said in tears “But I have to forgive you dear, if not for God….” She allowed the tears run down her face.

 

 

“I know dear……” Seth said.

 

After several minutes, they all had stopped crying. Bridget told them more about her encounter and all that she was told to do. Seth also explained who God was and how to become a born again Christian which she wholeheartedly accepted.

 

“So, what are you going to do now?” Angela spoke out. “I mean, ‘the saviours.” she added.

 

“All I know is that I found God who is greater than them. I am going away for a while; I need to know Him more.” She said smiling.

 

Angela stood up going to hug her. Bridget felt so much love and forgiveness knowing that she didn’t deserve this despite what she did, but she knew that it could only be God working in them.  She said her goodbye and left the house.

 

 

Shortly after she left, they heard another knock on the door. Seth went to the door and found another guest, the face wasn’t familiar.

 

“I’m sorry Sir, Are you Mr Seth Evans?” The man asked politely.

 

“Yes, how I help you?” Seth said.

=8

“I am so sorry about your house, I was directed here by one of the Officers at your house.” he said.

“It’s okay.” Seth said. “What can I do for you?” Seth asked again.

“My name is Christopher Hutchins; I work with the Global communications. You sent us some computer programmers almost eight years ago, about some advance network.” He said trying to make him remember.

“Yes I did, that was a long time ago.” Seth said. “Please, come in.” he said.

“That was just a hobby I was so fascinated about in college but I ended up being a lawyer.” he said.

“Really?” Chris smiled. “The reason I’m here is because we have been trying to advance our technology for a long time and couldn’t find the best options, all our IT operators have worked so hard but nothing could be found, so one of our operators was going through some old files and found your programmes. It was very impressive, something we’ve all wanted,” he said excited. “I was sent here by the Managing directors to ask you to please come down to our office, if you are willing to sell us your prototype.” he said.

 

“What!” he said excited.

“Sir, that prototype is worth millions of dollars.” Chris said smiling.

“How much are we talking about?” Seth asked.

“We are offering 2.5 million dollars and open for negotiation.” Chris said smiling.

“Are you serious…..” he stammered.

“Oh my God!” Angela said from where she was sitting, listening to them.

“We will need you to come down to our office, if you are willing to work with us.” Chris said.

“When?” Angela asked seeing her husband was still in stock.

“As soon as you can.” Chris answered.

“Can we come now?” Seth asked.

“Of course,” Chris replied, excited. “But you will give me few hours to get the directors together.”

“Go on dear,” Angela said excited “We’ll wait here for you.”

“Oh no dear, I’m not leaving you both here for one second,” He said carrying Josh in his arms, “Let’s all go dear.” He said excited.

 

 

The deal was completed in three days. Seth sold the prototype but still retained ownership. They decided to move to another city, not out of fear of the Saviour but realized the battle is the Lord and their lives shouldn’t be spent fighting battles with the enemy, they wanted a clean slate, a new life. Seth decided to follow his life-long dream of computer design and programming. They continued to serve the Lord fervently, they also shared their testimony with everyone they met including this reader, they want you to know God does deliver and save his people, He always come true whatsoever the situation may be. He forgives our sins; he will wash you in the blood of His Son, Jesus Christ, clothe you with mercy, cleanse you with compassion, feed you with forgiveness, restore you with grace, crowned you with glory and comfort you.

 

Shout for joy to God, all the earth;

Sing the glory of his name; give to him glorious praise!

Say to God, ‘How awesome are your deeds!

So great is your power that your enemies come cringing to you.

All the earth worships you and sings praises to your name.’

Watch out for the concluding part. ‘The Final Battle!”

 

 

Please leave your comments below.

 

 

© Circlesoflove 2012

 

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Hear my Prayer

At many point in our lives, all we want is answers to our prayers. Days when our heart is racing so fast; we become anxious and afraid of not knowing what the results will be. We prayed, and prayed and still praying.

This morning, I leave you with the prayers of king David from Psalms 20.

May the Lord answer you when you are in distress;
    may the name of the God of Jacob protect you.
2 May he send you help from the sanctuary
    and grant you support from Zion.
3 May he remember all your sacrifices
    and accept your burnt offerings.[b]
4 May he give you the desire of your heart
    and make all your plans succeed.
5 May we shout for joy over your victory
    and lift up our banners in the name of our God.

May the Lord grant all your requests.

6 Now this I know:
    The Lord gives victory to his anointed.
He answers him from his heavenly sanctuary
    with the victorious power of his right hand.
7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
    but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
8 They are brought to their knees and fall,
    but we rise up and stand firm.
9 Lord, give victory to the king!
    Answer us when we call!

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Restoration

Have you been bitter; so many trouble on every side? You have prayed and done all you can do just for a change, but nothing seem to show up? Days when your heart tightened in dismay at the thought of the things around you?  You have so many questions as to why things are happening this way; you’ve questioned your faith and searched yourself for answers. You have often felt that God has forgotten you; maybe He isn’t interested in your life any longer. You don’t understand why your prayer hasn’t been answered.

You have searched high and low for a change in your life, maybe a job opportunity; you have the relevant qualification and even experience but nothing is coming forth. Interview after interviews, but still, nothing fruitful has come out of it. Is it a child of your own? You have waited so long to be a mother or a father; tears have gone up in prayers but still nothing.

Hear what the Lord is saying concerning you this morning. “Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. You will increase my honour and comfort me once again.” – Psalm 71:20-21

God will restore your life; He will bring you out of every trouble and storms of life. Your bitterness will turn into joy, troubles will receive peace. God will bring you up from every depth, every trial, every difficult situation, every stormy sea. He will increase your honour and make you great.

There was a time I felt so sad; I had so many questions that needed answers. I needed a word from the Lord; you know when you are faced with things, where you just want to know the Lord is still here with you. This is what he said to me and a word for you today.

“The poor and needy search for water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst.” Isaiah 41:17.

Do you feel this way? You are in need of something; you are searching for water (healing, restoration, financial breakthrough, job, fruit of the womb etc). You are exhausted on every side, your strength is failing, and your tongue is dry and dehydrated; you are gasping, and panting for air.  Now listen to what the Lord said.

“But I the Lord will answer them; I, the God if Israel, will not forsake them. I will make rivers flow on barren heights, and springs within the valley. I will turn the desert into pools of water and the parched ground into springs. I will put in the desert the cedar and the acacia, the myrtle and the olive….”

Did you get that? This verse opened up something new in me. The Lord said He will cause river flow in barren lands. Note that he did not say he will take you to a land flowing with rivers, but in that same barren land, He will make river flow in it. Now see Folks, that same place where you are, the place where it’s been called barren, the place where people have scorned you, and said nothing good can come out it. They have called you several names, said hurtful and damning words at you because of your situation. You have been looked down upon and tossed aside.

I have great news for you. The lord is bringing flowing rivers to you.  That same place where you have been disgraced, you will be celebrated. The place where you have been looked down on, you will be exalted. I hear the sound of flowing waters folks. In your life, in your marriage, in your business, in your family, I hear the sound of rushing waters into the dry land. Do you believe this? Are you ready for the explosion of God’s goodness and blessing in your life? I am.

You have been called barren; desolate and unfruitful? I hear the sound of children playing in your garden; the sound of treasures sitting around your table. I hear the sound of your own children calling you ‘mother, father’.  Listen carefully folks, the Lord has not forgotten you, you are not forsaken and you have not be rejected. He will make you fruitful. He said he will put in the desert cedar, myrtle and olive. He is making you great; right where you are, he is bringing promotion and wealth to you. He is bringing pines in the wasteland.

In every flowing river, there is always a source. Your source is the Lord; it is the Lord who is bringing a change in your life, it is the Lord causing rivers of flowing water into your life and let me tell you something. With the force of the water flowing into your life, it will destroy every barrier, every obstacle, and every stumbling block the enemy has placed in your life. It will wash away every stigma, every mark of disadvantage and failure away from you. You know the ‘But’ that has been placed in your life; so many negative words has been spoken, the curses, the failures and walls as barrier in your life. Our God is greater than any obstacle; He is greater than any diagnosis and report of men. He is the Almighty and nothing can stop his flow in your life. He does not need to gather head of states or the ceo’s or even your family together in a meeting before he can bless you. He needs no permission from any one and no one can stop his flow in your life.

You need to arise and start praising the Lord; I believe in His word; they never fail and in your life, his word will not fail. It will accomplish the purpose in which he sent it. His word will be fruitful in your life.

The Lord has done this so that people may see and know, they will consider and understand that the hand of the Lord has done this, that the Holy One of Israel has created it. Are you ready?

In whatever you are going through this day, hold fast on His word, believe in it and you will not be ashamed. Remember again his word, “Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. You will increase my honour and comfort me once again.” – Psalm 71:20-21

Have a blessed weekend and rejoice in his word to you today. God bless you.

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Parents’ Corner – Rules for Parents for their Toddlers.

Rules for Parents for their Toddlers.

  • Never turn your back to them, they are very fassssst. One minute, they are right there, the next, you will be surprise where you’ll find them.
  • Their eyes can see everything, especially the very tiny things on the floor, and that goes straight to the mouth. 
  • When you realize your kid has been quiet for some time, Beware! Go check on them and you will find the most fascinating thing they are doing. i.e, toilet paper rolled out, paint all over the floor, laundry out, face painted, and trust me, those lists are the nice ones.
  • When looking for your keys, forget the drawers or on the table : check the bin, toilet, toy box, pampers,  you might be lucky it’s still there. 
  •  Once your baby finds their way into your kitchen, it becomes their favourite place to hang out. Lol. Helping hands they are.
  • The stair case – Don’t underestimate them. They do have their own tricks. Your child’s safety gates cannot stop them.
  •  Body cream! Never leave it unattended. It can be yummy or good for spreading.
  •  Your laptops, phones, computers. They lovvvvvvvvveeeeeeeeee those gadgets. Good for chewing, sitting on, drumming, and standing on. P.s, in case you are looking for your phone, kindly check the toilet, or better still, the fridge.

 

Our precious adorables, they do make our day. Have fun finding out their new tricks. Being a Parent is the best experience in a resume.
P.S. You can never get all the rules, so go find yours. 

 

Please share and send us some wonderful moments where you tried not to scream and definitely laughed yourself out.
Happy parenting.

 

*Photo credit: pinterest.

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He is The Everlasting God

Is there anything you are looking unto God for?  He is an everlasting God. he is able to do all things. Nothing can limit his plans for your life.

He is the creator of the ends of the earth. That means that his connection reaches to the end of the earth. He can take you to the highest position. He is the connector.

He never grows tired or weary. His promises are YEA AND AMEN. He will not grow weary in fulfilling his promises in your life. Even when you get tired or weary, he wouldn’t.

His understanding you can’t fathom. Sometimes you don’t need to understand how that miracle will happen, how that healing will be, you only need to trust Him.

HE IS THE EVERLASTING GOD.

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He is not here; He has risen!

 

“After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.

There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.

The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.”

So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.” – Matthew 28.

 

 

Photo credit: www.myhumblekitchen

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He is not here; He has risen!

 

“After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.

There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.

The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.”

So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him. Then Jesus said to them, “Do not be afraid. Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see me.” – Matthew 28.

 

 

Photo credit: www.myhumblekitchen

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Sweet Dreams

We will lay down and sleep, yet we will wake up in safety, for the LORD is watching over us.

Good Night Dear Friends

#CirclesOfLove

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At the Cross

“But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.” – Isaiah 53:5 “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” – Romans 5:8

For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. 8But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.

Jesus paid the price at the cross. Halleluyah!

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The ‘M’ Word – Marriage, His way.

I would like to write on a topic I have been pondering on for several days now. The sound of wedding bells is a great delight to hear. Everyone is excited about the whole celebration; the dresses, the glamour, beauty and everything that comes with it. Now, after the whole celebration, there comes the real thing ‘MARRIAGE!’. Before I go there, I will like to talk about something very crucial. It’s about Building a House. Is there an eyebrow raised? Please, give me a few minutes to break this down. Now, let’s take a look at this scenario: when someone is building a house, he buys a piece of land and a drawing of how he intends building the house. He then sets out the foundation which involves digging out, filling in, cutting away, clearing, the structure and much more. This process is usually lots of man labour and tedious. There’s always sweat and exhaustion from this process but the labourer wouldn’t give up. He knows this stage is important in the building process, and unless this is done, nothing can be put in place. He cannot go through any short-cuts or ignore this due process.

 

Marriage is in fact like building a home/house. The earlier stage of a marriage is about two different people from different background and upbringing getting to know one another. Folks, marriage is not a battleground as some have made it so; it’s not a place where you want to know who’s going to win an argument or who is right. Marriage should be a place where two hearts unite together, working towards the same goal that will bring joy, peace, love, unity and success in their lives. There has been a lot of misconception in these areas for some couples; just like when you are building a physical house, you want to dig into the ground to get a good foundation for the house. You need a strong structure to build the house on, concrete so the house can stand firm.

So it is for a marriage, you want to dig deeper into the word of God ‘the One who created marriage’, to build a strong healthy relationship with your spouse. You want a good structure for your marriage, a concrete ground that will hold you both strong and firm.

You need to get rooted in the word of God to be successful in your marriage. Just like in a house, there are somethings you need to uproot from your marriage. Just like filling in the foundation of a house with sand, cement and all, you need to fill your marriage with love, compassion, understanding, good communication, respect, forgiveness, and much more. Just like you take some dirt out of the foundation of a house, you need to get rid of any malice, jealousy, hatred, disrespect, disloyalty and much more out of your marriage.

Just like a labourer wouldn’t give up when starting a foundation of a house despite the stress, hard work, sweat, and exhaustion; so also you shouldn’t give up when building your own foundation. You will eat the fruit and joy of the marriage when you stay close to God. He will empower you and guide you through this glorious path. He will cover you with his love, and keep it safe from every weed and unwanted occurrences that would want to destroy your home.

Wives “Submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Saviour. Ephesians 5: 22.

A number of women have issues with the role of submission in their marriages; some have said, ‘submission in their homes is basically been taken for granted’. Submission implies obedience and surrender to God’s will in the marriage. ‘This text should not be construed as a license for husbands to trample upon the wishes of their wives. A lot of men treat their wives as if they are a doormat. They walk all over them as if they have no sense, as if they have no ability as if they are inferiors. That is not what the word means at all’ – Pastor Jimi Adeleye.

Pastor Steven J. Cole argues that God is not a cosmic male chauvinist, who is punishing women and rewarding men by commanding these respective roles in marriage! Rather, they reflect God’s wisdom and loving care for us as we obey. Also in this regard, all Christians are under authority. Husbands are not an authority unto themselves. They must submit to Christ and to the elders in a local church. To live in rebellion to authority is to live in defiance of God Himself, who ordains all authority.  Excerpt from ‘What! Me, Submit to Him’ © Steven J. Cole, 2008.

Also, for husbands “Love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies.” Ephesians 5: 25-28.

Husbands- Loving your wife does not make you weak or less of a man. He doesn’t make you inferior or being taken for granted. God desires unity and oneness in marriage; He desires you to love the wife of your youth, nurture, and care for her. Being the head of the house doesn’t imply that you cannot help in the little things around the house. Speak life into your wife, speak love; encourage her to fulfil her dreams, pray for her to be the women God created her to be.

A marriage, as indeed all human relationships often go through strains. Whenever there is tension in a marriage it is important to recognise it, and deal with it before it becomes a friction. A relatively minor disagreement not resolved can very easily degenerate into a major conflict. Effective communication is central to resolving issues.

I leave you with this folks. Pastor Jimi says, ‘Enjoy life with the wife whom you love, all the days of your life….Ecclesiastes 9: 9 (RSV). Deal with facts (not fiction) in the area of your finances; With regard to finances, remember that happiness is about comfort and contentment, not insatiable materialism which could lead to crushing indebtedness and pain. From personal experience, some what I call low-cost marriage maintenance go a long way in marital bonding, such as courtesy, small acts of kindness, considerate acts and motivating words; truly and seeking the wellbeing of your spouse, will enrich the marriage immensely. Also in personal appearances, likes, dislikes, sexual intimacy and physical satisfaction etc. Try your best to maintain the sexual chemistry in your marriage; look your best, but accept unchangeable features “both yours and your spouses. Ageing, stretch marks, baldness, grey hairs are some inevitable changes. Couples can grow old together and accept inevitable life changes with dignity and grace. As someone said true love is that which changes not when changes find.

Today, I humbly ask you to choose God’s own way of a healthy marriage. Stay committed to him, and he will guide and teach you. He will show you the way to love as you ought to.

Have a blessed day.

 

 

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Your story isn’t over yet?

 

Are you trusting God for something that is humanly impossible? It defiles all scientific explanation or medical reason. It is simply impossible by human nature; or  probably there are so many obstacles or hindrances that may stand in the way of that thing coming to pass.

 

Now see, faith is not brain work; its simply trusting God and believing that He will do what he said he would do. You do not need a medical explanation on how the result would come about. Yes, you can be faced with the fact that it is humanly impossible but again, that’s why faith isn’t fact. They are two different thing. Faith is from God, fact is human reasoning but tell me, who is greater? The bible says, ‘God is not man that he should lie or repent of His words; has He not said it, would He not bring it to pass?’

 

Remember the story of Abraham; faced with the humanly impossible situation of a dead womb and old age, yet faith brought him through. Listen to this verse please, ‘Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead – since he was about a hundred years old – and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God has power to do what he had promised.’ Romans 4:19.

 

See Folks, it’s ok to recognised the challenges; you see them, you know the facts; in fact, you know the circumstances surrounding the ailment, the big names given to it by specialist, the difficulties stated by those in power, but still, do not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God. God is not man. Did you hear that? God is not Man and do not work according to our human reasoning and no power or fact or even gravity or science can stop him from fulfilling his promises in your life.

 

Whatever you are trusting Him for this morning, belief and trust in his Word. If he said it, He will bring it to pass. Stand firm on your faith and do not waver by the things around you. If your case is like Abraham, trusting God for a child, please hold on and don’t give up. If you are trusting for a job or breakthrough or anything that has proven difficult, God is able to do it. Speak His promises into your life. Have faith and trust in him.

 

You see, your story isn’t over, God will bring it to pass.

 

Have a blessed day.

picture by mikmikmanio.blogspot.com

 

 

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Go and Occupy

A young graduate secured a job in a multi-million dollars company; a well paid job with great opportunity. He was overwhelmed by this position as it was beyond his own imagination. He was ready to work hard and not lack in any of his duties. Within days of his employment, he realised that some of his colleagues were not too pleased with him; he had been given a position above them and some thought he wasn’t up to their own standard and didn’t have the qualification, experience or even background status fit for the position. Day after day, he became depressed by their attitude and couldn’t understand why they would not give him the chance or even get to know him better before judging him. All he wanted is to prove himself, but the scorn and discord from them became agonizing.

Does this sound similar?

You strive for a position, work hard to get to a place; you just want a chance in life, a chance to be your own person, a chance to be free. Looking at every side; it seems difficult to achieve. You get to a land or a country and all you want is a chance, a chance to make a living and achieve your dreams, a chance to put food on the table for your family, a chance to be somebody but everything seems so difficult and frustrating. You try to secure a job, despite your qualification, experience and hard work; still, no one wants to give you a chance. You know you can do that job better and succeed excellently in that department but no one will give it to you. You are in a position already and they are making life miserable for you, some would even tell you not to get too comfortable as your days are numbered in that position. So many discords can make a journey frustrating

Listen, I have a word for you today. ‘Take possession of the land and settle in it for I have given you the land to possess’- Numbers 33: 53. Did you get that? Take possession of that job, take possession of that land, take possession of that project, take possession of that business, whatever it is, go and possess it. Did you notice that the Lord wasn’t just telling them to ‘take possession’ which is visible power or control over something; he was telling them to ‘Settle in it’ – To put firmly into a desired position or place. Whoa! Did you hear what the Lord is telling you? Don’t just take possession, settle in it, enlarge your coast, take a firm ground, and establish yourself in that land. You know, the land wasn’t for the Israelites in the first place, it wasn’t their place of birth but the Lord gave it to them anyway.

Now listen, where you are now doesn’t have to be your place of birth, but the Lord is giving it to you, maybe you were just passing by but decided to stay, the Lord is still giving it to you. Maybe you were just an interim in that job, even though it’s a job you so much desired but fear you might not be retained, the Lord is giving it to you. Maybe you just went for a few weeks training in that place of work, the Lord is giving it to you. He has given you to settle in, go take possession, enlarge your tent, make progress, have children in that land, build a business, take possession and settle in it.

The Lord has changed your status from ‘visiting’ to ‘resident permit – unlimited leave to remain’. My oh my! I am so excited about this message and I know the Lord is speaking to someone this morning. Stop living like a stranger in that land, stop living like a visitor, live like a heir of the kingdom, Your heavenly father owns the land, ‘the earth is the Lord and the fullest thereof’ – Psalm 24:1. The Lord owns everything in it and he has chosen to give you that land, that place you are now, your home, your marriage; don’t let anyone intimidate you. Don’t let them tell you, you don’t deserve it.

I found an amazing scripture over the night, it’s in Deut 6: 10 ‘When the Lord your God brings you into the land he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, to give you—a land with large, flourishing cities you did not build, 11 houses filled with all kinds of good things you did not provide, wells you did not dig, and vineyards and olive groves you did not plant—then you eat and are satisfied,’ Isn’t that amazing? The Lord is giving you a finished product. Houses you did not build, good things you did not provide; He is giving you a finished and great product, who are you to doubt him?

Folks, the Lord is doing wonders in our lives and does not need permission from any head of state or royals or CEO or even head of organizations before he established and blesses you. Isn’t He great? Go and occupy Folks, take possession and settle in it. Don’t think it’s too much, ‘What would people say about me, won’t they call me all sort of names, ‘gold digger’, thief or whatever’. Please, don’t limit the greatness of God in your life, when they question you about the goodness of God in your life, tell them to go ask God. He is God and answers to no man and He does what pleases him and what He has done today is that ‘He’s given you the Land, go take possession and settle in it’.

Have a fulfilled day.

© Circlesoflove 2015

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Thank you for your Continued Support

Thank you to all our readers and fans for your continued support all through this year. Thank you for reading my stories, articles, visiting website, for your encouraging messages and support.

You have been a great friend.

Thank you for being part of Circles of Love. Thank you for making 2014 a blessing. Thank you for a wonderful year.

God bless you.

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Don’t Count the hours, Make the hours Count.

It’s a few hours to the amazing year 2015. We all can’t wait to see the unfolding of this new year. Why don’t you do something great before the end of the year 2014. Don’t Count the hours, Make the hours Count.

Give a gift of love, a gift of compassion, show mercy, tell someone you love them, give a hug, make a wish come true, forgive.

What’s your plan for the next few hours, make it count.

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Thankful

This morning, while we were having our family devotion, I thought I had mis -heard when my husband thanked the Lord for the perfume we used, but I later heard him thanking our God for the oil, cream, soap, water, air, safe journeys and many others, I realized that I had heard right. There are so many things to thank the Lord for; for the smallest things, and the big things. The things we take for granted, and the things we do not think to thank the Lord for. We watched a movie recently about a homeless family who were living from their car; they had to go through waste bins for their breakfast, lunch and dinner. Little things like washing soap, tooth paste, tooth brush became a luxury to them.

When you see and hear stories like this, you will appreciate the little amenities of life. You will be thankful for your life; that you wake up in the morning and you can open your eyes, you want to get up from the bed and you can actually lift up your legs, move them in the direction you wish and walk. Do you think everyone can do that? You can eat without assistance or tube running down your throat. That the air you breathe in isn’t toxin to your body. You decided to take a walk down your street without fear of a bomb going off on the road. Isn’t that worth being thankful?

Maybe things didn’t quite turn well as you had expected this year, but you are still alive. But you say, ‘I’m sick in my body, business has been down, we have been suffering for so long, things are not just alright’. You still need to be thankful, because you have God on your side. He has not forgotten you, and He will make ALL things beautiful for you. The bible says, ‘we should be thankful in all circumstances for this is the will of God for us’. 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Be thankful folks for all that you are, all that you went through and for all that you have. What are you thankful for this year? I am thankful for God’s grace and mercy. I have thankful for my family. I am thankful for God’s provision over us. I am thankful for my parents and my wonderful in laws. I am thankful for my siblings and loved ones. I am thankful for my friends and for Circles of Love. I am thankful for life. I am thankful for every seconds, minutes, hours, days, and months of this year 2014.

What are you thankful for?

Photo credit: marcguberti

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Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas to you all Folks.

Thank you everyone for your love, support and prayers throughout this year. Wishing you a great Christmas; may the Love of God fill our heart.

Love from Circles of Love.

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Love never Fails

Chapter One

It was a cold and an uninviting night, but she knew she had to get their dinner out from there. She couldn’t see the far end of the alleyway because it had been blocked by two large wheelie bins by the owners of the Chio Chinese Restaurant. This was done months ago to stop the thieves and illegal sales of goods from there, which had affected their business for so long.  After so many years of struggling with the stigma and offences associated to the alleyway, it was finally deserted. Now, it’s dark, smelt of stale urine and things scuttled underfoot as you carefully trod its length. The walls ran with slime which covered the now long forgotten graffiti brickwork. No one like the alley. No one used the alley except the desperate and hungry, like Karen Burke. The wheelie bins behind Chinese restaurant was the perfect place to get leftover food to feed anyone who was brave enough to walk the alleyway.

Smoke bust through the air extractor from the back of the kitchen window; bringing warm sensation to her face. The light bulb at the back door was flickering, it looked like it was about to go off. It was a cold winter evening; flakes of snow drifted down lazily. It was always beautiful when it snowed in December. It brought out the Christmas magic to everyone, the pile of snow in the garden, children making snow men, and enjoying the excitement and the joy of Christmas. But this wasn’t so for Karen, the cold weather was rough on those without homes, or a safe place to keep warm.

Karen found a carrier bag on the floor; she opened it quickly but there was nothing in it. Then, she went on to climb the crate on the floor to help reach into the wheelie bin. There was definitely something in here; different kinds of food: rice, noodles, vegetables, even some salad. The cold weather had been kind enough to have preserved it from getting spoilt. She reached her hands into the bin, and helped herself to some noodles. There was also foil covered plates, with half eaten rice in it.  It smelt alright, so she added it to the bag in her hand. A rattle behind startled her; she scanned the thin darkness to see what it was, then a rat emerged with a half eaten fries  in it’s mouth and ran passed her. She inhaled deeply, and went back to her search. Like her, the rat also needed dinner. A whimper of exhaustion escaped through her chaffed lips; she shivered from the wind that entwined around her body. Suddenly, the back door opened. She jolted and looked up to find a man coming out. He was carrying a box filled with recycled bottles in it. Quickly, she got down from the crate and started to run.

 

“Get out of here.” The middle aged Chinese man shouted after her.

Karen looked back to be sure he was not following her.

“Don’t you come back here again.” He took one of the bottles and threw it in her direction.

Karen screamed. She dropped the bag on the floor and shivered in fear. She looked back to see the bottles had missed her.

“I’m going to put some rat poison into every food I put in the bin,” he yelled. “Bad people, bad for business.” He wiped his dirty hands down his face. Then he added the box with the crate of recycles and went back inside.

 

Karen picked up the bag and started to walk away. She knew he couldn’t come after her. This wasn’t the first time she had invaded the Chinese restaurant’s bin, and got yelled at for it. In fact, she had been there in the last year so many times that she  had lost count. It was the perfect place to get good food for a homeless person. She had often wondered why the staff in the restaurant always ranted at her. She was only after the food they had thrown away, not invading their kitchen. She looked inside the bag, and sighed in relief. This was enough for their dinner; she had promised Jo some Chinese takeout for dinner, and he was going to get just that. She was going to make some fire to warm the food. With that, she continued to the place she’d called home for several months now.

 

…………….

This is an excerpt from the new edition of the Circles of Love Magazine Fourth edition. It is packed full with new and captivating stories. Please click here to get your copy today.

This is the fourth edition of our magazine. It’s a Christmas and New year edition

It’s packed full with inspiring stories and articles featuring:

  • Love never Fails
  • The Betrothal
  • The ‘C’ Word
  • Rekindling Intimacy in Marriage
  • And more….

These stories are not only intriguing, captivating and breath-taking but are also inspiring, motivating and full of suspense. Have a happy reading!

God Bless

colmag4th

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Circles of Love Magazine Fourth Edition

I am so pleased, and excited to announce the fourth edition of the Circles of Love magazine.

It’s packed full with intriguing and captivating stories. Don’t miss it Folks.

It would be available to download tomorrow.

 

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Seasons to Greetings

Seasons greetings to you all!

Jesus is the reason for Christmas.

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A Royal Prisoner

 

The violent banging on the door jolts Ben from his sleep. He sat up quickly wondering if it was a dream. Then, he hears the screaming from his mother’s room and his father shouting. The noise was becoming louder; the footsteps were heavy and nearer to his room. Alarmed and frightened, he stood up quickly from his bed, walks towards the door when suddenly it was forcefully kicked open and in a matter of seconds, flashes of light, fierce shouting and about two men grabbed his shoulders and pinned him to the ground, trying to restrain him.

“What is this?” he shouted, confused. “What’s going on?” he screamed, struggling with them. “Who are you?”

“Are you Benjamin Cooker?” Someone shouted in his face.

“Yes, yes, yes, please, who are you?” he whimpers in fear.

The light in the room suddenly came on; only then did he realize who they were; several police officers in his room.

“Benjamin Cooker, you are under arrest for rape,” one of the officers addressed him, putting a handcuff on him.

“What!” he gasped; mystified.

“You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law…”

“You have me confused with someone else,” Ben struggled with the officers holding him. “This is all a mistake.” He shouted louder to be heard.

They took him out of his room, there, he saw his mother struggling with the officer keeping her back.

“What are you doing to my son, please,” she cried out. “Where are you taking him to, he’s done nothing.” he heard his mother’s voice behind him. His father was shocked, just staring at the whole scene in horror.

“You have the right to speak to an attorney, and to have an attorney present during any questioning, if you cannot afford a lawyer, one will be provided for you at government expense.”

 

Ben was stunned and appealed as he was put behind the police car. His heart aches seeing his mother running after the police car he was in and his father struggling to hold her.

“Please, you have me confused with someone else, I didn’t rape anyone,” he shouted fearfully at the officers. “This is wrong, I haven’t done anything.”

“Say that to your fellow perverts you would meet in jail.” One of the officers said angrily.

Ben was frightened and terrified at the whole thing. He couldn’t understand what was happening. His hands hurt behind his back and felt already like a prisoner.

‘This was probably a dream’, he tried to console himself. ‘This can’t be happening to me; I mean, this shouldn’t happen to me; I am the Benjamin Cooker.’ This thought was going on in his head.

Within few minutes, they were at the police station; as he was been walked into building, all eyes were on him; threatening and damning eyes stared furiously at him. Fear gripped him; it was the early hours of the day when he should be sleeping safely in the comfort of his own room not being bombarded by police officers. A slate was hung around his neck and flashes of light as the camera went off, he was asked to turn in different position to take his photo; his finger print were taken and a swap from his mouth for DNA sample.

Not long after, he was led into a tiny room, and the heavy gate shut behind him. He sat quietly on the flat single bed, dejected and terrified.

Then, it physically registered on him that this wasn’t a dream, it was really happening. Being confined in the tiny room brought tears running down his face.

‘Benjamin Cooker’, he said to himself. That was his name, the name he had so much protected and prided. He couldn’t believe how much trouble he had gotten himself into; it was only a night of fun that turned into a night that may destroy the rest of his life.

A few days ago, he had come home for the summer holiday from school; it was his first year as an undergraduate student at the University of Coventry, studying to be an Architect. His Parents were so proud of him when he received a scholarship to study it was a great pride seeing their eighteen years old son off to the university and succeeding brought so much joy to them.

Right from his primary school, he’s won numerous awards for best student in various competitions and was well known in the community as one of their best student.

Shortly after his entrance into the university, he was introduced to join a fraternity; they called themselves, ‘The brotherhood'; he’d watched so many movies about fraternity group which most likely always go by the same name but didn’t know they truly existed until he was invited to one. He was just a freshman in school and being invited to well esteem and rich boys club was somewhat great for him.

The guys there were from very rich families and had connection and everything a young man would want in life. From the movies, he had thought he would be dragged out of bed in the middle of the night and taken to a remote place for initiation and all but this was far from it. It was an evening gathering of boys in expensive suit, glasses of wine having a nice time. They talked about football, stock market and all forms of business he’s not even heard of.

 

He’s never seen so many wealthy young boys all in the same room; their suits, shoes, watches says it all about them, not to talk of their cars. He felt so much intimated by all these considering his middle class background. They told him if he would join their club, his future was secured and would have numerous opportunities of wealth in life. They had god-fathers who would ensure their future is well taken care of. They stated their rule which wasn’t so difficult, ‘help and support every brother in need, protect and guard their interest’.

 

A Few days later, he officially joined the brotherhood after a ceremonial gathering was called. He was sworn in by swearing on the ‘black book’, where all their rules and regulations were written in.

His admission into the brotherhood brought many benefit to him, he was relocated to a well furnished house not far away from the school to share with some other members and given a Ford fiesta 2010 to start off with. Because of his intelligent in his studies, he was placed in the academic department of the fraternity where he would help other struggling members with their studies and receive numeration for his services. Life was great, I mean, every boy’s dream was coming to pass in his life; he had nothing to fear, nothing to worry about. He met with Josh, a final year student who took exceptional interest in him. He happens to be a millionaire son and a grandson to one of the founding member of the brotherhood. His friendship with Josh bought more respect from other students and even the lecturers, not that he needed it but he was somewhat feared and respected. Few days to their summer break, he made plans to meet up with Josh in one of the clubs in London.

His parents were excited when he got back home; he carefully hid his fraternity from them. He knew they would frown at such and wouldn’t understand how harmless they were especially since they were both elders in the church and had taught him about God right from his youth. He decided to keep his life in school secret to himself and be a good church boy when he’s home.

……………………….

Two days after his return back home, he met with Josh at a local pub not too far from his house; he tried every wine and drank himself to the extreme. Shortly after, Josh decided to drive him home, but on their way in the midst of the fun and laughter, Josh asked him if he wanted to have more fun and do something he’s never done before; he was so full of himself and laughed all the way. Few distances away from the pub, Josh parked his car by the side of the road and both waited in the car. Josh asked him if he’s ever had sex with a stranger before, someone he did just meet for the first time. They both laughed about it and drank more beer.  Shortly after, they spotted a young girl on the other side of the road; Josh immediately came out of the car and went to her. Ben couldn’t make out what he said to her but the girl cussed at him and started to walk away when Josh grabbed her and carried her into the side of the road, weaving at Ben to come out. Ben followed quickly and followed Josh’s instructions; he helped to push the young girl on the floor and before long, Josh was on top of her while Ben held her two hands to the ground, keeping her from struggling. The young girl cried, begged and screamed for them to stop but he laughed at her while Josh raped her.

He had no idea how he got home that night but when he woke up in the mid-day, he knew something was wrong, he knew he had done the abominable. He was so scared to think about what happened so he went back to bed, sleeping through out the whole day, woke up to have his dinner and then went back to sleep until early hours when he was arrested. Everything was becoming clearer to him now, the hangover had worn out and he knew he was in real trouble.

The bang on the cell gate jolts him from his thought.

 

………………………….

“Hey boy, your lawyer is here.” the officer shouted at him. The heavy gate was opened while they cuffed him and led him outside.

As they approached a room, he could see his mother from the glass window and there, he felt ashamed. He had become a disgrace to his family and went against everything they stood for.

 

Her eyes widened as he was brought in, she stood up quickly going to hold him.

“Oh God! Ben,” she held him close. “Don’t you worry, we’ll get you out of here.” she touched his face to assure him.

His father sat there, stone faced, staring at him. Ben felt his heart pounding, ‘Did he know the truth?” he thought in his heart.

“Alright,” the other man seated in the room spoke out. Ben realized he was the lawyer.

“My name is Carl Henson; I am going to be your defence lawyer.”

Ben nodded, unsure of how to response.

“Why are we defending? He hasn’t done anything here, they have him confuse with someone else.” his mother raged out

“Ma’am,” Carl said.

“No! You are going to get my son out of here right now, today,” she shouted at their lawyer. “this all comes back to racial discrimination. A white girl gets raped, probably by her boyfriend and then, they blame a black boy for the offence. What has my Son got to do with this? He just came back from school few days ago, an honours student and a respectable boy in the community. I will not stand for this, I will not let anyone use my son as a scapegoat in the name of law.” she shouted, her eyes widened, staring at the police officer behind the window.

“Sit down Margaret!” the sound of his father startled her.

“What!” she stared at him in disbelief?

“Sit down!” he said again.

“Are you going to sit here and allow them do this to us, to our son? Are you intimidated by all of them?” She shouted at him, pointing at their lawyer who was also a white man.

“Ma’am!” Carl stood up, insulted by her words.

“Don’t you ‘ma’am’ me!” she screamed at him with tears running down her face. “This is my son we are talking about, my only child; are you going to sit here and let them do this to us? We are the victim here Jonathan, we are.” she cried out to her husband.

Ben couldn’t take this. He felt like ripping his heart off his chest. He dreads the horror in the room, his mother hysterical, crying for the innocent child she once knew and unaware of the evil he’s become.

“Ben, do you understand the charges against you?” Carl directed his question at him.

He nodded.

“Do you know any Melissa Gail?” he asked.

The name was familiar. “No.” he replied.

“Alright, a Miss Melissa Gail claimed you raped her two days ago.” Carl said.

The uncontrollable weeping from his mother made him mute; he avoided her eyes.

“Now, my job is to defend you in court but there are strong evidences against us here.”

“I did not rape anyone.” he found his voice, aware of his father’s intense gaze on him.

“You see, he said it, he didn’t rape anyone, he doesn’t even know who she is.” his mother cried out.

“The police searched your room shortly after your arrest and found one of shirts which matches a piece of clothing Ms Melissa torn away from her attacker.” he stared into Ben’s eyes, waiting for an answer.

His mind flashed back to the event, he remembered the girl grabbed his shirt during the attack; Josh had laughed at her, asking her if she wanted to have the two of them at the same time. He was too drunk to realize she had torn his shirt.

“Do you know how a piece of your clothing got into her hands?” Carl looked straight into his eyes. .

Stunned. He felt his heart pounding. “I was at a pub that night, maybe, it happened there. I really don’t know.” he found himself saying.

“Hmm, that’s could be an explanation.” Carl said.

“I don’t understand all these,” his father spoke out. “How was he identified amongst every young boy in the pub? Was the Melissa girl at the same pub?” his father directed the question to Carl.

Ben was afraid to look at his parents, he had told them he was going to a friend’s birthday party that night, not a pub.

“No, she was coming from a night library not too far from her house.” Carl said.

“Then, how did she know my son to have identified him?” he asked.

“That’s where it becomes difficult, she physically identified him; gave the full description and address which means they must have met somewhere or someone she already know before.”

“What?” his mother said in exasperation. “How?”

“That’s where we have to work harder and bring any evidence that will acquit your son from all these charges; you are going to tell me everything that went on that night, what you did, what you ate or drank, the people you met.” he said to Ben which brought a slump in his throat.

These were simple question but the most difficult he would have to answer to. He knew he couldn’t involve Josh in this, his life would be over and as rules of the brotherhood, and he has to do everything to protect him. He’s heard rumours of old members who went against the brotherhood and the punishment that was issued against them were so severe that it destroyed them and their whole families. He understands Josh’s position in the society and knows the brotherhood would do everything in their power to make sure nothing destroys his reputation. It wasn’t just his life at stake here, his parents and everyone he loves would be hurt in the process if he does anything contrary to what the brotherhood stands for.

“So, did you go with anyone to the pub that night?” Carl asked, staring at Ben and his pen ready to write down his answer.

“No.” he replied quickly.

“What did you drink?”

“I had a bottle of beer.”

“How many?”

“Just one.”

“But you told us you were going to a friend’s birthday party, how did you end up in a pub?” his mother asked in anger.

“I had a change of plans.” He said quietly with his head bowed.

“You see what ‘change of plans’ has caused you?” she frowned at him.

“So what happened after you left the pub?” Carl asked.

“I walked back home, alone.” He said.

……………………………….

Thirty minutes later, he was back in his cell. Those few hours with his parent were the most tormenting in his whole life. He’s lied, cheated and sinned against his parents. All his dreams of becoming wealthy and successful were literally all dreams now and has no hope of coming to pass. He lies on his bed, brought his knees to his chest and wept. He felt his life was over; the life he was starting to enjoy and be a part of is wasting away. The pain in his heart was unbearable; he traded his life with the devil and destroyed everything. He knew the days coming would be more difficult and for the first time in his life, he felt scared and alone. His so-called confident and pride were gone. Even though he was just an accomplice but he’s more or less a rapist; he held the girl’s hands to the ground and allowed her to be raped and abused by another. What is worst than that?

 

……………………………

A few days later, Ben was still in jail as his bail was denied. His mother had become a regular visitor to the prison while his father gave several excuses not to come. In fact, Ben had been relieved when he didn’t show up; he couldn’t bear to see him after all he did. He knew he didn’t believe every word he said the other day but his mother has been the sole believer of his innocence and still believed they have him confused with someone else and the judge would see that when they go to court. Every visit comes with fervent prayers for his freedom and encouragement to stay strong. She told him everyone they knew believed in him and all praying for him. All these brought more tears to him; he not only disgraced his family but everyone he knew. He left home for few months and allowed the world to corrupt the innocence in him; he traded his soul for luxurious, wealth and riches. He gave his future which had been solely guarded by the Lord over to the devil to maintain and keep. Just in few months, he’s destroyed everything that he was. Everyone was fighting for his innocence but he knew the truth, he knew the devil he’s done and no one can help him now, not even the brotherhood.

………………………………….

The Court proceeding has been going on for several hours now.

The prosecution called in this last witness, ‘Melissa Gail’.

For the first time in few hours, he lifted up his head which has been bowed ever since he walked into court to see the young lady he was accused of raping.

The name came with a face, the name that has been haunting and tormenting him for several days finally came with a face. He recognized her; she was in the same class with him in his primary school, which was definitely how she identified him. During the questioning, he continued to stare at her even though he was deaf to all the questions until Melissa pointed at him.

He shuddered as their eyes met.

“Do you see the man that raped you in this courtroom?” the prosecution asked.

“Yes,” she answered, pointing at him. His heart started to pound so fast as she stared earnestly back at him. He saw the fire in her eyes; he saw flashes of the same eyes that stared and begged him the other night. He knew she wanted him to pay for what he did to her even though she knew in her heart he wasn’t the one who raped her. He saw the fury and pain in her eyes, someone you’ve probably laughed and played with in school and in turn held you down to be raped. He knew it was over and he had to pay.

“No further question.” The prosecution said.

Carl stood up and walked up to her.

“How come there is no DNA sample to connect my client to you?” he asked.

“Objection!” the prosecution said. “Speculations!”

“I will rephrase your honour.” Carl said.

“Although the medical examiner gave evidence of you being raped but there wasn’t any DNA to match my client with you.” Carl said.

“Objection!” the prosecution stood up again. “Speculation your honour, the defence should ask his question and not give theories.” the prosecution eyed him.

“Sustained!” Judge said. “Go straight to your point, Mr. Henson.” he said to Carl.

“Why did you wash yourself after being raped?” Carl asked.

“What?” Melissa gasped, repulsed by the question.

“I mean, anyone who has just been raped and wishes her attacker to be caught shouldn’t wash themselves from all evidence that could help the police to catch her attacker.” He explained to the jury.

“Now, Miss Gail, why did you wash away the evidence that could have help the police catch your real attacker?” Carl straightened, looking straight at her.

“God! I was raped by this animal,” she cried out. “I wanted to get his smell away from me; I wanted him out of me. I ran home and scrubbed myself in the shower. I couldn’t stand his touch on me, his breath; they were disgusting, “She cried out in anguish. “He held me down on the ground in dirt, he held me and raped me…..” she stood up, trembling and hysterical. “He raped me, laughed at me and took my life away…”

There was an uproar; the judge trying to maintain order in the courtroom. Carl watched the expression of the Jury and knew he was losing the case; Melissa had won their sympathy. They felt her pain and the female jurors looked angrily at Ben, some were almost in tears with her.

“What makes you so sure my client was your attacker?” Carl voiced out.

“Because I look into his eyes while he raped me, I wanted him to remember my face just like I will always remember his face. I cried out his name “she cried out.”I know who he is, Benjamin Cooker!” she broke down in tears.

Ben felt a heavy weight on him when she called out his name. She had known him whilst he held her hands to the ground. He wished the case would end and he’s given the full punishment to his offence. His heart could take no more of this. Everyone looked at him in disgust; they saw him as an animal. He had drunk himself to the extreme and lost all form of reality when he attacked her.  He knew if he was in his right sense, he would never have allowed this act to take place, not to talk of being involved in it.

“Case adjourned.” The Judge announced.

Ben was taken back to his cell but he knew it was over; it was too late to make amends. He had searched in the court room that day to see any of his friends or even Josh, but no one was there for him; they left him to face the music alone. What happens to all of their promises to protect and help every brother, despite the fact that he was doing the same; covering for an act he had not committed alone? It was too late to tell the whole truth now even if he wants to. Seeing everyone looked at him like a monster made him realized he was better off in jail.

…………………………

 

The following day, they were back in the court room.

The jury walked quietly into the court; they passed their decision to the Judge who acknowledges it.

“May the defendant rise.” the judge said.

Ben and his lawyer slowly stood on their feet.

“On the account of rape, the defendant is found guilty and hereby sentenced to eight years in prison.”

The sound of weeping from his mother brought tears to his eyes as he was led away. He tried looking for any sign of the brotherhood again but no one was there for him, not even Josh. His heart sank; how could he have been so foolish to allow this in his life? When did he leave the place of God and walked into the tent of the devil? He remembered the verse in the bible, ‘there’s a way that seems right to a man but the end leads to destruction.’  He knew every truth about the word of God, he knew his place in his kingdom, and he practically grew up in Sunday school but threw it all away, all for the sake of physical things and to be associated with people who are no help to him. He felt ashamed to be called the son of God. He knew the whole of heaven would probably turn their backs at him, cancel all the good deeds he’s done in the past and anything that speaks of him away from heaven. He felt bound to hell where he most likely would end up.

………………………………………………

“I’m sorry Ben; we’ll have to appeal the decision, something isn’t right somewhere and I will get to the root of it.” Carl said to him in the holding room.

Ben was in tears, unable to control himself. He couldn’t believe all that was happening, he had only come home for the summer holiday but ended up in prison.

“Your mother asked me to give this to you.” he handed a note to him and left the room.

Ben stared at the paper for several seconds; he recognized it, this was one of the drawings he did when he was younger, he had drawn a picture of himself and written below a bible passage his mother had taught him to memorize, ‘But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praise of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light’. His mother had told him while growing up that he was a special child, chosen by God and he was a royal, a prince from the household of God, but now, sitting in the cell room, he realized he was no longer a Royal priesthood but a Royal prisoner.

The story just begun…….

 

 

Read the rest of the story in the Circles of Love Magazine Second Edition

Circles of love Magazine

 

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Look at me (A short story)

I grew up with my parents and two siblings, a boy and girl. I happen to be the middle child, a girl. Right from a young age, I had always known how different I was from my other siblings; I knew I walked funny, stammered and not a bright one. As a girl, my hair never grew. In fact, I knew more about my disability from my family who had taken it upon themselves to tell me each day of how unlucky I was about life. Well, to be honest, I had a mild disability on my right leg. That was the way I was born but that didn’t seem to matter to anyone, not even my family. They said I was different, I wasn’t perfectly made. I wasn’t complete.

At first, we all went to the same school but a few years later, my parents took me away from the school to another ‘lower paid school’ since I couldn’t understand all being said in the ‘posh’ school as they called it. I was secretly glad I no longer went to the same school as my siblings. At least, I won’t be a disgrace to them. My father travelled a lot on business leaving my mum to take care of us. They all talk at me as if I’m so dull and won’t understand what they are saying.

 

Growing up was painful especially when those you love and are supposed to love you look down on you and tell you to your face that you cannot amount to anything. It’s been almost twenty years now, I dropped out of secondary school and attended a catering school where I learnt the trade and became one of the most sought catering services in the country. I remembered before my wedding, I took my soon to be husband to meet my parents and oh! You can’t imagine the way they looked down at him. When I even told them he was a Surgeon, they spit at me and said I was a liar. After several pestering, they eventually gave me the small wedding I ‘deserved’. I don’t know what I did to deserve all these treatments. I mean, I am their daughter, full flesh and blood.

 

Now, looking back, I feel so much hatred towards my family; I am a Christian and love the Lord but I can’t still get the hatred away from my heart. I have stopped going to any family function as they have failed to see the good in me and I don’t want them passing the same attitude towards my children. I want my children to know that they are beautifully created by God and they can be anything they want to be in life. My family since have not said anything to me about all that had happened. I know God’s thought towards me are not of evil but of good, I know the Lord loves me so much and has brought me this far to be great in life and no amount of what they say about me matters now as I am a new creature; fearfully and wonderfully made by God. I love my husband and so much love my children but I can’t seem to let go of everything they did to me. The fact that they don’t seem to regret or feel remorse about it bothers me a lot. I just want them to look at me; not the way they have been looking, I mean, look really at me.

 

Do I confront them or let it be, knowing they would always be like that?

 

Please advise.

This story goes out to every man and woman who has been subjected to pain by those they love and are supposed to protect them but rather put them down; deny them of their right to love and things in life. You can share your experience with us by sending your story to circlesoflovemagazine@gmail.com.

Please note, you can also remain anonymous if you wish.

 

God Bless.

© Circlesoflove 2014

 

 

 

photo credit: Shutterstock 

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Insight 4u – Silent Treatment in a Relationship

Insight 4u – Circles of love.

Often men and women who issue the Silent Treatment know it hurts their partners – and that’s part of why they do it.

They shut down to express their anger rather than express it fairly, through words and mutual, intimate communication. In other words, when the Silent One shuts down, he doesn’t even give his partner a chance.

If you are guilty of resorting to the Silent Treatment, I must call a spade a spade –it’s a cheap and easy way to hurt your partner. All the while, it turns you into a child who is incapable of communicating in your relationship like a grown-up.

If you’re in a relationship, do the honorable, adult thing and give your partner a chance to talk to you. Talk to your partner – share – and work productively on your relationship”.(Dr Seth relationship & love advice). 

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Insight 4u – Communication tools

Insight 4u – Circles of Love.

The most important marriage skill is listening to your partner in a way that they can’t possibly doubt that you love them. (Diane Sollee Smartmarriages.com)
Learning constructive ways to handle your differences is one of the most powerful things you can do to protect the promise that your marriage holds.
Marriage is a call to listen. Even when our spouses misbehave or create difficult situations for us, we’re to tune in to God’s still, small voice and ask, “What is it you want me to learn from this? How are you stretching me at this time? What are you trying to do in my soul?
Instead of listening, our impatient souls immediately want to provide commentary. Our natural, arrogant selves are eager to speak, to be heard, and to be understood. We can’t wait to express our opinion, state our outrage, or make clear our intentions, yet the Bible warns, “When words are many, sin is not absent” (Proverbs 10:19). You know what this tells me in a practical sense? The pause button on my tongue’s remote control should get much more use than the play button. (Gary Thomas, Devotions for a Sacred Marriage, pg. 137)
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Nothing, Except a little Oil

Hello Folks,

I would like to share a short story with us; please, read carefully with me.

The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead and you know he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.” Elisha replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have (of value) in your house?”

“Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, “except a little oil.”

Elisha said, “Go around and ask all your neighbours for empty jars. Don’t just ask for a few. Then go inside and shut the door behind you and your sons. Pour oil into all the jars, and as each one is filled, put it to one side.” She left him and afterwards shut the door behind her and her sons. They brought the jars to her and she kept pouring. When all the jars were full, she said to her son, “Bring me another one.” But he replied, “There is not a jar left.” The oil stopped flowing. She went and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts. You and your sons can live on what is left.” 2 Kings 4:1-7.

Did you notice that when the man of God asked her what she had; she answered, ‘nothing’? You know, sometimes, we find ourselves in the same situation where we have ‘nothing’. When we are in a tight corner and need help badly and have absolutely nothing to help us out. But this woman had a little oil, something she never really thought had much value. This particular ‘thing’ she had the Lord used to bless her.

Now, this morning, I want to ask you, ‘What do you have?’ You are facing financial difficulties, what do you have? Some of us think like this woman, we have nothing except .., probably a talent you never thought could yield such benefit to you, a business idea you have ignored, a skill you thought nothing of, a degree you have abandoned, a qualification, a trade you learnt many years ago and the lists goes on and on.

Listen, God will use what you have to bless you; that same thing you have looked down on, the thing you think do not hold any significant value or can do you no good or too small to break out for you.

This woman had a little oil but the man of God told her what to do with it. What do you have? Don’t look down on that which is in your hand, work at it. For this weekend, I challenge you to go back and think deeply, what do you have? The bible says, ‘your gift will make way for you’. That which the Lord has deposited into your life will make a way for you, God will cause it to multiply beyond your own imagination, God will cause it to take you places you would never have thought of, and God will cause it to make you stand and seat with kings and princes and not before mere men. God will make you great.

Let’s do a quick calculation; zero multiply by ten is what? Alright, what about one multiply by ten is what? Now, if you have nothing and you multiply it by ten is what? What if you have just one little one and you multiply it by ten, what do you have? I’m sure you get the gist. Don’t look down at what you have; God can use it for your good. You have so much inside of you.

We have the Mighty Man in battle to bless us, we have the Author and Finisher of our faith to guide us, we have the provider, we have a God that does not need permission from anyone to bless us, we have a Redeemer that can restore us back again, we have a Provider that will provide all our needs, we have the ALL Sufficient God; we have a Healer that will heal all our diseases; we have the Commander in Chief to command all our blessings to us, we have God. What do you have?

© Circlesoflove 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Insight 4u – Cheating Partner 2.

Insight 4u – Circles of Love.

Often wayward spouses do not have a history of lying, but their affair turns them into masters of deception. Once in a while the fog will life, and they see how dishonest they have become. When that happens, they usually panic and recognize the affair for the mistake it is. But eventually the fog comes back, clouding their reason, and they go back to their lifestyle of cheating and lying. (From the book, “Surviving an Affair” by Dr Willard Harley and Jennifer Harley Chalmers)
Lust makes us think that having some person we don’t presently have would make us happier. Often that person is simply a figment of our imagination. Even if the person is real, we often attach character traits to him or her that are not real. Usually our lust focuses on sexual involvement. We imagine someone who is terribly fond of us and who prefers our presence and intimacy over anyone else’s. We imagine that if we had such a person to hold in our arms, it would be exciting and wonderfully fulfilling. This is a terrible deception, for it’s a self-centered form of love and we ignore the devastating consequences of living out our imaginations. (Dr Gary Smalley, from an email sent out June 13, 2007 titled, “Tempted to be in an affair?”).
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Hello December!

Happy New Months Folks!

A New Day, and a New Month. If the Lord had not been on our side, where would we have been? The mercy of the Lord has brought us this far, his grace has been sufficient. His unfailing love paid the price for our sins. I am so excited because the Lord has done great things in our lives.

Folks, remember God promises never fail. He will bring to pass all that He said concerning you.

Psalms 91:14-16

“Because he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him securely on high, because he has known My name. “He will call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him and honor him. “With a long life I will satisfy him And let him see My salvation.”

Deuteronomy 7:13-14

“He will love you and bless you and multiply you; He will also bless the fruit of your womb and the fruit of your ground, your grain and your new wine and your oil, the increase of your herd and the young of your flock, in the land which He swore to your forefathers to give you. “You shall be blessed above all peoples; there will be no male or female barren among you or among your cattle.

Deuteronomy 15:4
“However, there will be no poor among you, since the LORD will surely bless you in the land which the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance to possess,

Leviticus 26:6-8

‘I shall also grant peace in the land, so that you may lie down with no one making you tremble I shall also eliminate harmful beasts from the land, and no sword will pass through your land. ‘But you will chase your enemies and they will fall before you by the sword; five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall before you by the sword.

Ezekiel 34:25-31
“I will make a covenant of peace with them and eliminate harmful beasts from the land so that they may live securely in the wilderness and sleep in the woods. “I will make them and the places around My hill a blessing And I will cause showers to come down in their season; they will be showers of blessing. “Also the tree of the field will yield its fruit and the earth will yield its increase, and they will be secure on their land Then they will know that I am the LORD, when I have broken the bars of their yoke and have delivered them from the hand of those who enslaved them.

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My Pain, My Gain Part 3

Chapter Eleven

 

Kathleen says:

‘Where do I go from here? The event that took place several hours ago was life wrecking. I couldn’t get over what had happened. I kept playing the whole scene in my head. My mother finding out that I had been sleeping with Paul; the fact that my mother isn’t my real mother, or the fact that I am mother’s daughter? I just couldn’t believe how I have played my life. All these years, I had blamed my mother for all that had happened, not knowing that the blood of a betrayal had been flowing freely through my veins. Wait a minute! Make that the blood of two betrayals. My father whom I had always looked up to; he was my hero, the man that gave me everything I ever wanted. Yet, he was the same man who betrayed his own wife, and slept with a prostitute and a thief. Yes, I said it. My blood mother was a prostitute and a thief. She was the one who started this whole battle in our lives.

I had no idea of what to do or where to go from here. Mum had excused herself to her room since the whole confession. I knew her heart was breaking; finding out that her husband had molested her only child, and kept her as his mistress under the same roof was a horror to behold. I actually wouldn’t blame her if she hated me after this. She was the victim in all these; she had been the victim all the while. She had been living with all the lies, deceits and betrayal all her life. She served them, loved them and was loyal; she stood by them all, and got nothing good out of it.

 

Chapter Twelve

 

Sophia sat in the living room staring into the air. She was tired of crying; the pain in her chest was becoming unbearable, and she didn’t want any illness added to the one she was dying of. She realized how difficult the revelation would do to Kathleen, and how she would move on from all these. She knew she had to make things right, she had to let her know that none of these were her fault.

This morning after she left Kathleen in her room; she had gone into her own room and started to bring out everything that belonged to Paul. His clothes, shoes, their wedding pictures, and everything he had in the house. She took them all to the back garden and burnt it all. She couldn’t believe how she’d lived with the monster for many years and never figured out what he was doing to her daughter. Although she’d suspected he had been cheating on her; from the numerous text messages she had seen on his phone, the unexplained business trips and excessive spending and bills. But she never knew he was also sleeping with her own daughter. She felt like a total failure.

 

Chapter Thirteen

 

Kathleen had locked herself up in her room for three days. Her mother had to force her to eat something during these days. Sophia also took the time to apologize for neglecting her all these years, and for many other things that had happened. She had refused to go back to work; she knew something was changed inside of her. She couldn’t go on doing the things she did before. She had to make a change in her life, she had to come clean to herself and to everyone she did hurt, but didn’t know how.

She couldn’t bring herself to face Mrs. Jones; she felt bad for all that she did. She also regretted sending the email to Collins. She felt ashamed, and couldn’t face him after all that he knew about her. She had logged off from all social networks, and deleted all her accounts from them all. She refused to pick up any calls that came through her phone, and after few days of messages alert and missed calls, she took out her sim card and flushed it down the toilet drain.

 

On the fourth day, she got out of bed to have a bath. She finished, and got dressed; then she decided to go through her wardrobe to throw some of her old clothes away. She knew she would never wear some of it again; it was her way of letting go of some of her pasts. Then, she spotted an old box she’d kept as a young girl. They contained some old photographs, diaries, a bible and some books she used to treasure, but had kept them locked away for many years.

She opened it, and the first thing that caught her attention was an old picture she took with her father. It was on a fateful Sunday he had taken her out for ice-cream, and then took the picture when he poked her nose with some of the ice-cream. The beautiful smile on their faces brought tears to her eyes. She missed him so much, and wished he was here to tell her what to do. She remembered that particular day; she had left the tap running in her bathroom, and went off to church with her parents. On getting back home that afternoon, the whole bathroom and her bedroom was flooded with water. When Kathleen discovered this, she switched off the water, and went to hide somewhere in the house. She felt because she had been warned severally to always switch off. Her father had discovered this, and found her where she was hiding. He asked her why she was hiding, and she said she had been afraid. That day, her father reminded her about the story of Adam and Eve, how they also hid from God after eating the forbidden fruit. That incident brought about sin to mankind. He explained that, although they had sinned against God, but He still loved them. He also loved us so much that he sent his own Son Jesus Christ to die for all our sins. Her father also explained that he had also done many terrible things, but the Lord forgave him all his sin. He told her that when she does anything wrong, she should never hide from the Lord. She should always come clean to him, and His mercy and unfailing love would always be available to her.

 

Kathleen learnt in that incident that her father loved her no matter what she did. Even more, that the Lord loved her no matter what mistake she’d made in life. She’d forgotten that lesson until now. The picture reminded her of something great, something that was about to bring about a change in her life. She realised that she had been hiding and making more mistakes. She felt she was unworthy and couldn’t stand in the presence of God because of her sins. Just like Adam and Eve, she was afraid of what the Lord would do.

 

Kathleen allowed the tears bunching her eyes flow freely down her cheeks. She knew she had to go back home. Her father had always taught her that her home wasn’t just the four walls of her house; her home was also the presence of the Lord. She never did understand much of what he talked about then. He would always speak of the unfailing love of God. He said he wasn’t perfect, although Kathleen thought otherwise. She saw him as the most perfect man in the whole world. He did no wrong in her eyes; he was a good father to her. She remembered him telling her that when he sinned against the Lord, he did felt ashamed of himself. He said he couldn’t stand to go into the presence of God, but he knew the more time he was away from God, the greater the chances the devil had in his life. Kathleen had no idea what he meant in those days, but she knew now. He had been talking about the things he did to her mother, his betrayal. She was too young then to have understood all these.

 

Kathleen placed the picture on her bed, and knelt down. She wanted to pray, she wanted to say something to God, but words failed her. Her heart was screaming out to God to help her, her body was asking for forgiveness, yet her mouth wouldn’t utter the words in her heart. She was flooded in tears; she was moaning, and her hand had a tight grip on the bed.

“Oh Lord…” she whimpered.

She felt unworthy to stand before him. She couldn’t just ask him to forgive her of all sins. It felt like a free ticket than she deserved. She wouldn’t believe she could just pray and ask the Lord to forgive all the things she had done wrong, the people she had hurt, and he would just forgive her. Just like that! She felt she does not deserve to be forgiven, she does not deserve any mercy from him.

She knelt down there moaning in tears, but her mind was re-counting all the things she had done in her life. The mistakes, the sleeping around, the lies, deceit, those that trusted her, but she betrayed. The burden was just too much to bear; the pain was breaking her heart.

“Please, help me…,” she cried out. “Help me daddy…,” she broke down into more tears. She had not meant to say the word ‘daddy’. It just came to her. She was referring to God as daddy. She couldn’t imagine how torn down her own father would have felt if he was alive to see all the thing she had done. How much more God had felt knowing and seeing all her sins. She felt like a filthy rag before him, she wanted to stand up and run as fast as she could.

“I am sorry…,” she wailed, “Please forgive me….” She cried brokenly. She knew there was no where she could run to that the Lord couldn’t find her. In fact, she was tired of running, she was tired of hiding. Her mind flashed back to when she was hiding from her father after she had flooded her room; she remembered how her heart had been pounding so fast in fear of the punishment she could receive, only, her father never did punish her. Instead, he told her about the love of the father. The mercy that we do not deserve but he gave freely to us.

She knew that if there was anyone that could save her now, it could only be the Lord. She lay down on the floor and cried out for mercy. She prayed that he could wash her clean, that he would take all the evil she had done and cleanse her heart. A lot of things were making new sense to her now; she remembered when she prayed as a young girl and she would ask God to forgive all the sins she did committed. It was merely a religious routine to her back then, but it had a new meaning to her now. It wasn’t enough to ask the Lord just to forgive without cleansing. She had to also pray that he wash away all the things she had done. To take away the pain and the effect it had on her. She wasn’t asking for a new memory, like it never happened before, she was asking that He takes away the dirt, the stains it had on her. That night, Kathleen cried and prayed. She begged and prayed for mercy; she asked the Lord to make her new, to change her life. After then, she slept off there on the floor.

 

 

Chapter Fourteen

 

Sophia sat with unease at the waiting room of the St. Andrews hospital. She’d been waiting to see her doctor for twenty minutes; her heart seems to be pounding so fast that it felt like it was about to burst out. She had called in a few days ago to book this appointment after some unusual way she’d been feeling. A part of her didn’t want to get too optimistic about the result, but another part believed this may be the result of her prayers. Compare to weeks ago, she’d been feeling much better and stronger in the past three days. The fatigue she usually felt was lessening, and a renew of strength in her body. She had been praying for a miracle, a healing that only God could give to her, and felt this was it.

“Mrs Coker.” The Nurse called, but Sophia was lost in her thought.

A gentle tap on her shoulder made her jumped.

“I’m sorry to startle you,” the nurse said politely, “the doctor is ready to see you now.” She smiled at her.

Sophia nodded, and picked up her hand bag from the seat next to her. She followed behind her without saying a word. The pounding her heart made it difficult to speak.

The nurse led her to the room, and opened it. There, Doctor Lucas was waiting.

“Sophia, how good to see you.” He greeted.

“Hello.” Sophia smiled, and sat on the chair he offered.

The nurse dropped the medical file on his table, and went out of the room. Sophia noticed how big the file had become; it was only a few pages several months ago when she discovered something wasn’t right in her body.

“I’m so sorry I couldn’t see you before this, I was away on a medical retreat.” He took off his glasses, and smiled tenderly at her. Doctor Lucas had been their family doctor for quite some number of years. He had been a friend of her late husband; they attended the same University back then several years ago, and remained friends. It had been heart breaking for him when he announced she was dying of cancer, and that there was nothing medically he could do for her after months of treatment.

“So, you are here about what we discussed on the phone?” He made eye contact.

“Yes.” she braced herself to hear his thought, but before he could speak further, she started to explain. “It is possible, right?” she asked, and didn’t wait to hear his response. “Anything is possible,” she added. “I can be cured,” She sat forward to him. “I know medically it can be deem nonsense, but there is nothing impossible for God to do.” Her face lilted up to hear his response. “You and I know that God can heal all diseases? I have heard cases of people dying of cancer, and suddenly, the doctors couldn’t find any traces of it in their body.” She clapped her hands together. “It is possible, right?” she saw the distress look on Doctor Lucas’s face, so she settled back in her seat.

 

Lucas smiled warmly to her, and closed her file on the table. “You know I am all for miracles and I certainly believe God can do anything-

“Exactly what I am saying,” Sophia jumped in her seat. “I feel so much energy that I haven’t felt in months. I feel strength in me.” She raised her hands into the air.

“Yes I understand.” He said, and inhaled deeply.

“But-“ Sophia looked at him like he was about to say something different. She sat down. “What you mean but? I mean, you don’t feel the same way I do?”

He stood up from his seat and went to stand in front of her. “Sophia, I am your number one fan of fighting this disease. I want you cured, healed in fact from any traces of cancer in your body, but I don’t want to get your hopes up until I can see the results of the test I ordered you should take a few hours ago.”

“And what does the result say?” she swallowed hard.

“I expecting them by tomorrow.” He put his hand on her shoulder. “However, I want you to take plenty of rest; I don’t want you stressing yourself because of so much energy I see in your eyes.” He smiled at her.

“I haven’t felt this much energy in so many months,” tears were bunching in her eyes. “I just feel great.” She wiped the tears quickly before they could roll down.

“You look great.” He said to her.

She let out a soft laugh. “You always say the nicest things to me, but I stopped believing you a long time ago.” She teased him.

“You do look great, and I know the good Lord is in control of your life.”

Sophia brought her hands to her cheeks. “Thank you Lucas. I am blessed to have you as my doctor.” She stood up.

Doctor Lucas stepped away from her to open the door. “Please, do take things easy, ok.” He opened the door for her.

“I will. Thank you again, and my love to Angela and the kids.” She said on her way out.

“See you soon.”

“Bye.” She said, and walked out of the room.

 

Chapter Fifteen

 

Sophia walked out of the hospital building in haste. She was eager to get back home and do the things she’d been dreaming to do for days now. She wanted to go to the beach, and had planned to ask Kathleen to come along with her. She was looking forward to walking in the sand barefooted, and the wind blowing over her face.

She was getting to her car when she saw a familiar face standing by it. Anger arose in her when she saw Paul.

“How dare you.” She shrieked.

“Sophia.” He looked solemnly at her.

“What are you doing here?” she shouted at him. She had wanted to call the police on him the day after Kathleen had confessed to her. She had been furious and wanted to lock him up, but Kathleen had begged her not too.

“I was waiting for you.” He said.

“You do have the gut to come near me after what you did.”

“It’s not what you think, please Sophia-

She interrupted. “What!” she was stunned. She couldn’t believe he just said that. ‘What should she have thought?’ “Did you just say that?” She shouted. “You raped my daughter, you sick bastard.” She screamed at him.

“Please Sophia.” He tried to hush her when a man walking by had looked at them.

“Don’t you dare hush me?” She shouted louder. “I don’t want to see your face again; I don’t want you near me or my daughter.” She warned.

“You have to hear my side of the story.” he tried to touch her.

She jerked away. “Don’t you dare,” she shouted out in tears. “What kind of an animal are you?”

“Sophia.” He called out.

“Don’t ever call my name again.” She stepped away from him, and then walked back and faced him squarely. “I was at the hospital, grieving for the baby I had lost, your baby, and you were at home forcing yourself on my daughter. She was a child Paul; she was just a child, my baby.” She screamed at him, and started to hit him harder on the chest.

Paul tried to hold her hands, but she moved away before he could stop her.

“You are a wicked man,” she spat at him, and then wiped her hands down her face. She tried to steady her breathing, and reduce the swelling in the chest. She could feel her heart racing, and wanted to get it under control.

“I really don’t know what to say to you in this state you are in.” He said coldly.

This state.” She repeated, and felt anger bursting through her dam. “In this state, I would like to kill you!” She clenched her fist in disgust.

He looked stunned, and then he had a smirk look on his face.

Sophia felt repulsed by him standing there. He had no sign of remorse on his face. She realised that he was just a monster, he was a man whose mission was to destroy her life, and he almost if not succeeded in doing that. She had made a mistake the very first day she meant him, and then another greater mistake when he asked her hands in marriage and she accepted. She had been so blinded that she refused to reason with few friends who had warned her about him. They said he was in for her money, but she believed otherwise. He had been so nice to her, but preyed on her vulnerability.

Paul looked at her for a minute, and then picked up his car keys that had fallen on the floor when she was hitting him.

“I came home –“

“No no no….” she shook her head to disagree. “Don’t you call it your home; It’s not your home. It was supposed to be a haven to protect my daughter, to keep her safe but you made it hell for her.” She pointed angrily at him. She couldn’t believe he could still come to the house. He had no business to come over again, that was her house, the house she owned.

He chuckled. “Alright, I went over to the house, and Gabriel said you went to the hospital, but I couldn’t find any of my things.”

Her head dropped forward in exasperation. She made a note to warn Gabriel, her gateman about this when she got home. He had no business telling anyone where she went.

“Your things.” She looked at him in disgust.

“Yes, my things. I couldn’t find them.”

“I burnt them all, everything.” She straightened.

“You did what!” His hooded obsidian eyes held nothing but disdain.

“I burnt them.” She saw the horror on his face. She wanted to do more to him; she wanted to take everything away from him, just like he took something away from her daughter.

He threw his hands in the air. “God! You are so-“

She moved closer to him before he could finish, and faced him squarely. “if you dare mention God again, fire will strike you right here.” She poked him hard on the chest.

“How could you?” He looked angrily at her.

“I would like to do more than that to you,” she clenched her jaw at him. “I will like to destroy everything you hold dearly, but couldn’t find any. “Now listen and listen careful cos I am only going to say this once. I do not want you in my life. Your name has been written out of my life, my accounts, my properties or anything it was on before. You do not hold or have any right over me and if you dare come ten meters to where I am again in your life, I promise, you will regret it.” She locked eyes with him so he could see the fire in her eyes.

Paul swallowed hard.

“One last thing, let my lawyer know where to send the divorce papers.” She pushed him hard from her way; got into her car, and drove out of the parking lot leaving him standing there.

 

Sophia felt her hands trembling after driving for a few minutes; she had to pull to the side of the road to try to steady it. Tears flushed down her cheeks; she had sworn in her heart to kill him when she sets her eyes on him. She couldn’t believe she had to let him get away with his crime. She wanted him to pay, she wanted him to rot in jail, and above all, she wanted him to rot in hell.

Kathleen had begged her not to involve the police; she said no one would believe her, considering her own lifestyle now. She said Paul knew who she had become, and it would only be her words against his. She had confessed to her mother all the other things she had been involved in, and not even the police would give her the justice and clean slate she wanted.

 

She struggled to steady her breathing and reduce the swelling emotion in her chest. She broke down into more tears right there in her car, she felt defeated and hopeless. She had thought if God had indeed healed her, it would be a second chance to make things right, but somehow, she knew there wasn’t any second chance. Lives had already been destroyed, mistakes that no one could go back to amend had been made. Suddenly, she put the car into ignition and started to drive away, she knew one place she had to go. It was a place she had not been to for several years, somewhere she’d dreaded for a long time.

 

After about thirty minutes of driving, she parked her car in front of the Lagos city cemetery and found her way to her late husband’s grave side. She stood there for a few minutes staring at his name on the headstone, ‘Edward Coker’; there were over-grown weed all over the place. Then, she bent down and started to pull out the weed with her hands; tears sprang in her eyes. Her heart was breaking, she had tried so hard to stay away from him, and from the memory they shared. He had been her first love, the only man who knew her; they had their weaknesses, and setbacks in their marriage, but they worked through it, together. When Edward died, it was like her whole world had crashed.

After clearing the leaves away from his tomb stone, she knelt down and wiped the tears away from her eyes.

“I haven’t been here in a while,” she started. “I am so sorry….” She whimpered. “I am sorry for staying away……; I just couldn’t bear to see you here.” Suddenly, she let out a loud groan. Her throat felt like it was burning, there was pain in her chest; tears of utter despair filled her. She had a tight grip on her stomach and cried out.

“Oh God,” She cried out. “I messed up Ed. I really messed up.” She groaned. “You always knew what to do, you were the strong one.”

 

She felt a hard lump growing in her chest. “I am not strong like you, I don’t know what to do…..Tell me what to do,” she whimpered.

“Madam, are you okay?” A man was standing by her side. She had not seen him walk up to her.

“What!” She jolted.

“Are you alright?” The man asked again.

She stiffened, and stood up quickly. “Yes, I’m ok.” She said, and started to walk away.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to startle you,” the man called after her, but she continued to walk away.

She continued into her car, and drove away.

 

 

 

 

Chapter Sixteen

 

Kathleen had been hiding in the downstairs guest toilet for over an hour. It was when she heard a car drove into their compound. She had looked through the window and saw Paul came out of the car. She couldn’t believe he was back; she became frightened; old memories flashed through her mind so she went quickly to hide before he could see her. She had gone into the toilet to hide, but heard his footsteps when he came into the living room. A few seconds later, he walked upstairs, and then back downstairs.

Kathleen was trembling in the toilet, she sat with her knees to her chest, praying so hard he couldn’t check in there. Then, she heard him cussing and shouting for his things. Kathleen knew he wouldn’t find any of them since her mother had burnt them all. Then, after few minutes of barking hard in the living room, she heard a big bang on the front door. She later heard him driving out of the compound.

She couldn’t believe the amount of fear she felt, she wanted him out of her life, not to be afraid of him, and hiding for the rest of her life. But she couldn’t bring herself to face him; she was not strong enough to stand and look straight into his eyes again.

 

Again, she heard the door open again and someone walked in. She felt her heart skipped a beat. She heard footsteps fading away, like the person was going up the stairs, then few minutes later, the steps started to get closer. Her heart was beating so fast, sweat beads rolled down her head. The door opened, and her mother poked her head in.

“Kathleen, are you in here?”

She swallowed hard when she saw her mother. Sophia was stunned when she saw her face; she looked like she’d just seen a ghost. “Are you alright? she asked.

Kathleen went quickly into her mother’s embrace. He was here, he came home.” She shivered.

“Did he hurt you, did he touch you?”

“No, no he didn’t. I hid in the toilet; I couldn’t let him see me.” She whimpered.

Sophia brought her back into her embrace. “I am so sorry dear, I am so sorry…,” she rubbed her back. Sophia didn’t want her daughter living like this; she didn’t want her hiding for the rest of her life.

“I promise you Kathleen, he will never hurt you again. Never!” She patted her back to assure her. She knew what she had to do, she had to make things right. She had to protect her daughter at all cost.

 

 

Chapter Seventeen

 

Sophia sat in her car, looking straight at the entrance of the Ritz hotel in the central part of Lagos. She inhaled deeply and got out with her bag. She had called Paul earlier today that she wanted to come see him. He had been so thrilled to hear from her, so he texted his hotel address to her.

Sophia entered the building, and walked to the reception.

“Hi, I’m here to see my husband, Paul Adams.” She smiled at the lady at the reception.

“Ok, please give me a minute.” The lady picked up the telephone and spoke into the receiver; few seconds later, she smiled and put the phone down. “You can go up ma’am, room 46. Take the lift to the third floor.” She pointed towards the lift.

“Thank you.” Sophia nodded and walked towards it.

She took the lift, and pressed the third floor. Then, she walked up to his room, and knock lightly.

Her heart leaped when he opened the door; he had a solemn smile on his face.

“Sophia, I am so glad you are here.” He said.

Her face was void of any smile.

“I’m really glad we can work through this,” he went to stand at the centre of the room.

Sophia put her hand into her bag, and brought out a gun.

He turned around and froze up when he saw the gun.

Her face was quivering in rage.

He swallowed hard. “Sophia!” he put his hands up. “What are you doing with at?” he moved slowly away from her.

“I have to make sure you don’t hurt her again.” She pointed the gun at him, and used the other hand to shut the door.

“Sophia,” he muttered. “Please….”

“You can’t hurt her any more if you are gone.” She flashed an angry look at him.

“I will never hurt her…, I swear.” He was trembling.

Her face was smouldering with resentment. “But you did before, you hurt my little girl.”

“I….” he stammered. “I… don’t…”  shame and indignation caused his mouth to tremble.

“You are a monster Paul, an evil man.”

Sweat rolled down his face. “I am sorry…”

“I have to protect my daughter; I have to make things right.” She stepped closer to him.

“Think about what you are about to do, think about the consequences.” He said.

“What consequences?” She shouted.

“You might end up in jail, or sentence to death,” he nodded his head, “Please…” He begged.

“Guess what? I’m already dying. I have nothing to lose.” She dropped her bag on the floor, and held the gun with her two hands.

Paul shook his head to disagree; he saw the angry look on her face and he knew exactly what she wanted to do. He moved away from her until his back hit the wall. “I will never hurt her; I swear to you; I will never touch her.” He moaned in tears.

“I know you won.” Then she pulled the trigger. Bang! She felt adrenaline drove through her body. Bang! She pulled the trigger again.

 

To be continued.

Thank you for reading. Kindly leave your comments here please.

 

 

 

 

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From an Outcast to a Hero

 

The story of the four lepers in 2 Kings 7 is one of the extra ordinary events in the bible. God used ordinary people, out-casts; the rejected, disabled, and labelled for scorn to save the Israelites.

In those days, lepers were not allowed to stay in the city, but are banished outside the city gate and there, they would die. No one would look upon them; no one would even speak to them. During this time, there was a great famine in the land; not only that, the Arameans had camped not too far away to fight againstIsrael. There was no way the children of Israel would win the battle except the Lord gave it into their hands.

These four lepers were hungry, and thought they should probably go to their enemies and surrender. They went to the edge of the camp, and not a man was there, for the Lord had caused the Arameans to hear the sound of chariots and horses and a great army so they fled. ‘Look, the king of Israel has hired the Hittite, and the Egyptian kings to attack us! So they got up and fled in the dusk and abandoned their tents and their horses and donkeys. They left their camp and ran for their lives. 

Wow! Can you imagine that? The four lepers who were considered nothing; the odds were against them. They had nothing, no title to their names and I’m guessing they had no sword or whatsoever weapon to defend themselves, but the Lord was with them. See Folks, when you are willing to do something, God will do the extra-ordinary. Where people have considered you as nobody, God will cause you to be a mighty one. As God caused their foot-steps to be that of mighty warriors, God will make your life an example of greatness, even beyond your own imagination. He will remove every label the enemy has put upon life and make His glory to show forth. Quit looking down on your life, God can use you for great exploits; He can take you to places you never thought you would get to.

He can make you pass that examination. He can make you reach that height in your career. God can do anything with your life. His power is not limited because you can’t speak well in public, remember Moses, God still used him. His power also is not limited because people or even your family has tossed you aside to look over sheep, remember David, he became the King. He will not look down on you because of where you came from or because you are an orphan, remember Esther – she became a queen in a foreign land; what about Joseph, the slave who became one of the greatest ruler, what about Daniel? And the list goes on and on. Don’t limit yourself because of what you can see around you; He is God, and He can turn the same thing that has worked against your life to begin to work in your favour. He is the God of ALLresources, and He will make available for you what you need to succeed. He is God, and he can cause even the smallest thing to be the greatest thing.

Now is not the time to hide because of the defect or weakness you think you may have, now is the time to Arise and shine for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.

Remain Blessed.

© Circlesoflove 2013

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Insight 4u – Cheating Partner 1

Insight 4u – Circles of Love

Drink water from your own cistern, running water from your own well(Proverbs 5:15). What God has put together, let no man put asunder (Mark 10:9).
Many times people want to know the definition of betrayal. To some, it is about having intercourse and other sexual contact with another person. To others, betrayal is more about one’s spouse feeling emotionally connected to someone else- late conversations of a personal nature with a co-worker, or an on-going, intimate friendship with another person. To others, it is secrecy. This may involve secret email accounts, cell phones, Internet behavior, or an unwillingness to share information about whereabouts, spending habits, or life plans.(Marriage Missions)
One of the most common clues that an affair is going on is an unfaithful spouse’s unwillingness to let the other spouse know about all aspects of his or her life. If a spouse refuses to talk about the events of the day, it may be a sign that a secret second life exists. When an unfaithful spouse makes his or her life a private matter, off-limits to the betrayed spouse’s inquiries, the secret second life is difficult to discover.
…When you stop to think about it, privacy isn’t something that improves marriages. It’s honesty and openness that improve marriages. The more information you have about each other’s thoughts and activities, the easier it is to meet each other’s needs and resolve conflicts. Privacy actually blocks access to that important information, and that ultimately leads to marital failure. (From the book “Surviving an Affair” by Dr Willard F Harley, Jr and Dr Jennifer Harley Chalmers).
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Insight 4u – His Reputation

Who is your husband?

You are his helper, so don’t turn him to a door mat; you have not only trampled on him but allowed others do the same – especially with your words. Some have resentment towards their husbands- maybe something they did in the past or doing to them, so they lash out their anger by speaking badly about them in public. Words are powerful, be careful what you say to that man. A virtuous woman has a husband who is respected. ‘He is known in the gates, when he sits amongst elders of the land’. – Proverbs 31:23.

Build His Reputation. You know those things you can do to ruin your husband’s reputation, right? (like talking bad about him behind his back or acting like you expect him to be thoughtless or lazy) Well, there are things that you can also do to build his reputation. How you act toward him says a lot to others. What you say about him in his presence and behind him, what you expect of him also speaks loudly.

Most men prefer to be admired to being loved. If you doubt this tell your husband that you love him and study his reaction. Then after prayerful consideration, think of something you admire about him. Say to him, ‘There is something about you that I truly admire’. Watch his attentiveness. You will be amazed at how powerful words of admiration are to your husband. Would you consider saying to your husband tonight, ‘There is something about you I truly admire’. Then share it with him. Lay your discomfort aside. Swallow your pride if you need to. Ask God for a spirit of humility and sincerity. Then step out in faith and tell your husband you admire him. You can do it! And God will bless you in your efforts. (From the book The Politically Incorrect Wife by Nancy Cobb and Connie Grigsby)

If you find it hard to come up with ways to encourage your husband, saying thanks is a great place to start. If things are rocky just now and you don’t feel particularly thankful for your husband (believe me, this happens!), start small.

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Please, send your request to circlesoflovemagazine@gmail.com for more information.

God Bless!

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MY PAIN, MY GAIN PART TWO

MY PAIN, MY GAIN PART TWO

 

Please click here to read part 1 of my pain, my gain.

 

Chapter Eight

 

Kathleen broke down in tears right there in the bathroom. She felt her heart tightened in dismay; in as much as she was hurting inside, her heart still sunk at the hurtful words she had spoken to her mother. Although, a part of her felt she deserved to hear the truth; she was the one who was battered and betrayed by the one person who should have looked out for her. It was the pain she had to carry for several years. She felt she had to tell the truth exactly as it was.

She couldn’t understand the sudden change of heart of her mother; why she was now interested in being part of her life. She knew the illness and the short time given by her doctors were a wake-up call for her, nonetheless, that was not an excuse to get a free ticket to a good relationship.

 

Kathleen hated the emotion she felt right now; it was a mixture of fear, uncertainty and regrets. The fear of losing the only family she’d known all her life overwhelmed her. The uncertainty of what the future held for her, especially with the pain and hurt she’d allowed herself to go through. Then, is the regrets of not making things right by her mother. In spite of their strain relationship, she was still her mother. Nothing in her life made any sense for a long time, but now, she felt something inside of her, something stronger than the pain and hurt she’d always carried with her. She wanted to scream out and ask it to stop haunting her; part of her was also trying to dismiss what it meant. ‘This was love’, a love she had denied her mother all these years, a love she’d tried to suppress with the pain, hurt and guilt. She realized that somewhere in her heart, she did love her mother; probably had caged it far away, but something or someone had let it out.

Then, she felt angry all over again. They had no right to do this to her, they have no right to make her feel this way; this was definitely not what she was made of, this is not who she is. They had opened her to a feeling of love, a deem weakness that she couldn’t afford to experience. She had trained herself to be numb to any feelings, in exception to the pain and hurt she felt. Then, she concluded that this was Collins’s fault; he had told her about love, he’d caused all these. He opened something in her, like a part of her she’d buried for a long time had suddenly awoken.

 

Suddenly, she stood up from the bathroom floor and walked back into her bedroom. She went to her computer, open her email to compose a message, and started to type. She felt If he indeed Collins loves someone like her, then, he should wait until he read her messages. She was not someone to be loved, not capable of loving anyone.

She started to write everything in her life to Collins; started with the rape, and how she became her step father’s mistress; she told him about her boss’s husband whom she’d slept with from time to time, also about the various things she had done. After she was done typing, without hesitation, she hit the send button and went straight to bed.

 

*****

 

An hour later, Kathleen had been tossing and turning in bed, unable to sleep. She had never opened up to anyone in her life; no one knew the things she’d done in her life. She wanted Collins to back away from any notion of love or admiration of her. She was not meant to be loved, not by anyone. After failed attempts to sleep, she decided to get up to take some sleeping tablet when suddenly the door opened, and Paul, her step father walked in.

“What do you want?” She looked hard at him.

“What!” he gasped in disbelief. He looked back to see if he had entered the right room.

“What do you want?” she asked again.

He moved towards her. “What do you mean?” He looked bewildered. She had never spoken to him in such manner before.

“I want you out of my room now!” She felt a strong anger in her to turn him away this night.

“I just got back from Port Harcourt, and thought to spend the night here,” he said, “your mother is fast asleep and doesn’t even know I’m back.” He started to unbutton his shirt.

She looked at him in disgust. Suddenly, every fibre in her wanted to strike him dead.

“So, let’s get down to business; I will leave very early in the morning before she wakes up and pretend I just got back.” He let out a wicked smile.

Kathleen rubbed her hand against her face in frustration. “Paul!” She shouted to get his attention. “I want you out of my room right now and out of my life!”

Paul was startled; he looked as if he was just woken up from a deep sleep. “What has come over you?”

Kathleen dropped her head forward in exasperation. “Nothing has come over me!” She raged out. “I’m doing something I should have done years ago.

He chuckled; amused by her anger. “So, you suddenly woke up one day and decided to do this?” he asked smirking.

Her breathing became rapid; even the thought of him standing there repulsed her. “I said I’m done!” she shrieked.

 

“I can see you’ve got your big mouth back,” He barked hard at her. “This reminded me of a certain fourteen years old girl, who thought she had it all, but later became the very thing she despised.” He growled at her. “I am not done with you girl, so neither get back on that bed and you will give me what I want or I will take it by force.” He demanded.

“You Bastard!” Kathleen raged, stood up and walked towards him with the scissor pointed at him. This time, there was no stopping, she wanted to cause him so damage, drive the scissor right into him. He was taunting her, and she’d had the last of it.

Paul saw the hot poker of anger in her eyes, he knew what she was going to do. He turned around quickly towards the door, opened it to escape, but found Sophia standing there, drenched in tears.

 

They both froze up standing there. A Few seconds later, Paul was the first to move, he walked quickly downstairs, took his car keys and walked hastily out of the house.

Kathleen dropped the scissors on the floor. She trembled, her body radiating heat. She felt an uncomfortable pain rose up in her chest. Even though she had blamed her mother for what Paul did to her, but seeing the truth out now was terrifying. she was the woman sleeping with her mother’s husband. She was the betrayer. She bowed her head in shame and indignation.

 

 

Chapter Nine

Kathleen says:

Right there, I knew it was over. I sat on the floor, with my back against my bed, a few meters away from my mother who was also sitting on the floor, in front of my bedroom. Both of us had broken down in tears the minute Paul left the house. I saw the pain in my mother’s eyes, she tried looking at me but each time she did, she was flooded with tears. At some point, she wanted to say something to me but nothing came out of her mouth, just more tears. The more she cried, the more I felt broken. Now, this was just the two of us, no in-betweens, just a mother and a daughter with a broken heart.
“I wanted to tell you,” Kathleen said wearily. “I wanted to tell you the very first day it happened but I couldn’t.” She was afraid to look into her eyes.

Sophia covered her mouth in a sob.

“It all started the few nights you spent at the hospital after the miscarriage, I was fourteen.” She gulped a sob.

Sophia gasped in disbelief, followed by more tears. Her hands were trembling.

Kathleen swallowed hard, “He said he would kill me if I tell anyone but after few trips into my room, I stopped fighting, I felt there was no use fighting; I thought you gave up on me,” she broke down into more tears; Sophia went quickly to her. She wanted to hold her, but Kathleen jerked away.
“Oh God.” She whimpered. She saw the shame on her, she wouldn’t even let her touch her. It’s been years since she held her daughter in an embrace.

“I gave up mom… I stopped fighting for my life.” She curled her hands around her body. She desperately wanted to be held, but couldn’t bring herself to it. she felt filthy and ashamed.

“What have I done?” Sophia whimpered, her hands were trembling. I caused all these…” she cried out.

“No no no no… Don’t blame yourself, mom, you never knew.” Kathleen shook my head to disagree with her.

“But I should have known. I am the mother here. God! All these years in my house and I never suspected anything, I never…” She continued to cry.

“I should have told you.” Kathleen wanted to stop her from blaming herself. All these years she had blamed her mother for everything that happened, but right here, right now, she couldn’t continue with that anymore. She couldn’t bring herself to do that to her.

“I should have known,” she shouted. “Oh God! What kind of a mother am I?” she broke down in tears.

“I allowed him mom, I couldn’t stop…..” Kathleen whimpered.

“You were just a child; you were my child, my baby.” She broke down into more tears. “God!” she whimpered. “Now, I know I deserve to die, I deserved what has come upon me…, I could not even protect my own child…

Kathleen wanted to say something but couldn’t find the right word. She felt heavy; the burden of the pain and hurt overwhelmed her and right there for the first time, she admitted she was tired. She became tired of carrying all the pain day to day, she was tired of blaming her mother for all that had happened, tired of fighting.

“I am so sorry.” Kathleen cried brokenly. That was the only word that came to mind. “I am so sorry for doing all these…

“What!” Her mother whimpered. “I am the one who disappointed you, Kathleen,” her voice was broken. “I let you down, I did not protect you.”

Right here, Kathleen knew she couldn’t let her go on crying; she was exhausted, they both were, but considering her health, she just couldn’t let her go on. She stood up and got her mother up from the floor and made her laid down on the bed; she also lay down beside her. She could still hear soft cries.

 

 

Chapter Ten

It was almost 5:30 am; Sophia had struggled to sleep. Sometimes, she stared long at Kathleen who was fast asleep, other times; she quietly cried and prayed to God to take the pain away. She finally stood up from the bed and sat on the one-sitter couch in Kathleen’s room.

All she wanted was restoration, healing and peace but feared she couldn’t have any of those.

She felt like a failure as a mother. How can a mother not know her daughter had been molested? How again could a mother have brought the beast that caused this into her home and continued to nurture the beast? She couldn’t understand these things, and how she allowed this into their lives. She had constantly prayed and does the things normal Christians should do. She couldn’t understand where she went wrong. But something was for sure, everything she had been doing especially since her late husband had been doing things all by herself. Trying to find a meaning to life, a path to walk straight on; to make things happen all by herself. She relied so much on her own understanding and thought she could do things all by herself. She failed to include God in her decisions, her affairs and her life. She felt the Lord did not fight for her when she needed him most; the silent tears, the scorned and prayers were all for nothing. She felt God wasn’t there for her, so she took matters into her own hands.

Her control of things increased when her husband had died; she thought she needed to be on top of things and prayer was slowing her down. She needed to make quick and fast decisions, and that was the beginning of a journey that had altered the rest of her life. Then, the decision to marry Paul was no exception, all of her own understanding and wisdom. All these were as a result of leaving the presence of God to do things her own way.

Then, she thought again, ‘Was it the un-forgiveness she had towards her own blood sister or was it the one she held against her husband? Was it betrayal or even abandonment? Was it the loss of a dear one or even anger that led her to this? Does that mean that the Lord had looked away from her when she walked out of His presence? Does God actually forget his own when they disappoint him? Are all these the consequences or punishment of her sins?

 

As she pondered on these things, she saw Kathleen turning in bed. Fear gripped her as the image that turned to her looked like someone she had tried so hard to forget.

Sophia felt pain gripped her heart. The face looked exactly like her sister’s; the one that took away everything from her.

“Mom.”

Kathleen’s voice jolted her from her thought.

“Are you still crying?” Kathleen asked wearily.

She wiped the tears quickly away from her cheeks.

Kathleen sat up in bed. She wanted to say so many things to her mother but wasn’t sure of how to start. She felt sorry for all she did.

Sophia cleared her throat. “I have to tell you something dear.”

“Mum, please, I am sorry.” Kathleen voiced out before her mother could continue.

Sophia raised her hands up to stop her.

“No dear, it wasn’t your fault; none of this was.” Her voice went through her. “You were right about the things you said earlier, I left you all alone, I allowed anger and other things take control of my life,” she rubbed her hands down her face. “I did so many things wrong; I took a wrong step, made wrong decisions and I allowed this into our lives.”

She watched as the tears flowed from Kathleen’s eyes.

“God!” Sophia whimpered. “I wish I could go back to make things better, I wish I loved you more than myself, I should never have walked out on the one person that could have straightened my life.” She saw the confusion on Kathleen’s face and knew she didn’t understand.

Maybe it’s time to tell her the whole truth, a time to be completely open before her.’ Sophia thought to herself.  

“You see, I walked out on God, I walked out of His Will for my life, I made decisions without Him, I gave up and allowed anger, un-forgiveness destroy the things I loved most in my life,” She started to say.

“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom. Now is the time to do things right; Sophia thought to herself.

Kathleen listened carefully to her mother; for the first time that she could remember, she was actually eager to hear what she had to say.

Sophia started. ‘Many years ago; barely a few years after I married your father. It all started during a Christmas holiday. My sister, the only family I have in the world came to spend the Christmas with us. I was excited and happy to see her even though I was sceptical at first because of her wayward life. She was involved in all sorts of things, from drugs to different men. She always had me worried with her way of life, but no amount of pleading made her change.

Sophia flashed back to that day. She remembered her sister as the most beautiful woman she’d ever seen; a few years older than her but still maintained a great body feature. She was every man’s desire of a woman; she was smart, beautiful, confident and likeable, unlike her own reserved nature. You will fall in love with her within minutes of meeting her, she always had her charm on people and that didn’t exclude her own husband, Edward.

At first, during the visit, Sophia had nursed some jealousy within her when she saw something different in her husband. He lilted up when he spoke to Susan. He was a different man and would go on and on laughing and talking on matters his own wife couldn’t even find interest in. He was just happy, and Sophia felt there was nothing wrong in that. After few days, she felt she was being paranoid and was wrong to have felt jealousy towards her own sister. 
Some Few days after Christmas, Susan left and went back to her usual life of partying and all sorts but that Christmas changed their lives. Sophia noticed her husband became withdrawn, she knew something was wrong but couldn’t lay a finger on it, not until Edward came to confess the abominable to her.

He confessed he had sex with Susan one day when she was out. He said he had no idea what came over him as he never imagined or even thought about it before. He wept and asked for her forgiveness. Sophia knew her sister; she knew how every man would respond to her charm. She always had that effect on men but never thought her own husband couldn’t resist her temptation. That sort of thing shouldn’t have happened; she felt her sister should have made an exception but she didn’t, instead she defiled her home.

After several pleading, she decided to move on with her life and accept him back, although, she wasn’t sure she had totally forgiven him, enough to continue to live together. But as for her sister, that was the last Christmas she ever saw her, not until they got the surprise of their lives.

 

A year later. One morning, Edward was about leaving for work when he found a baby car seat in front of their house. He moved towards it to have a better look; suddenly, the car parked by the side of their house did a quick speed and drove off. He wasn’t sure what that was all about until he saw the content in the car seat. It was a baby, with a note in it. The child was sleeping peacefully in the car seat. It took him several minutes to come back to the reality of an actual baby seating there in his drive way.

He carefully carried the car seat with the baby into the house; as suspected, Sophia was shocked and appalled. How could someone leave a baby out there? It wasn’t long to realize what this was all about. Susan got pregnant as a result of the Christmas episode, she never called to tell them but after three months of having the baby, she realized she couldn’t cope and her life had no place or agenda for a baby so she decided to drop her off. It took her just a few sentences to say she was sorry in the note she left in the seat, and nothing more.

Sophia was infuriated. She couldn’t believe her sister allowed herself to get pregnant for her husband. It was enough she had slept with him, but for her to keep the pregnancy was appealing. She knew her sister had aborted several pregnancies in her life time, and couldn’t believe she chose to keep this one. This was like her sister; she always had a way of destroying everything she couldn’t have. She couldn’t have Edward but kept the pregnancy to tell her she could have anything she wanted.

Sophia hated her sister even more. She tried looking for her, but as she knew, she had no permanent residence and had changed her telephone contact details. Her child became a symbol and reminder of what her sister did to her. She couldn’t even dispute the paternity of the child as she looked exactly like her husband, like the female version.

Days that followed after that was like torment to her, especially since she’d been anxious to have her own baby. She watched in silence and anger as Edward tried to take care of his baby. He bathes, dressed, fed her and every other responsibility was catered by him. Sophia wouldn’t even pick up the child or even looked at her. She was hurting, and the baby reminded her of what her sister did to her.

It was tough and she wanted to punish Edward for what he did to her. Two weeks after this, with several sleepless nights; he was tired and exhausted and most of all, his wife was moving farther away from him.

One night, Sophia heard the baby crying uncontrollably; she tried ignoring it like she always did, but the sound of her crying filled the house. Her heart would not take it, so she went looking for her husband and found him right there with the baby in the living room; he made no attempt to carry her. He was drenched in tears, tired and exhausted. Sophia couldn’t take the pain anymore so she moved quickly to carry the baby, the same child she had not carried or cared for in two weeks was being held by her. She rocked and held the baby until she fell asleep in her hands. Finally, when she was certain the baby was fast asleep, she gently placed her back on the mattress laid there on the floor and proceeded to leave her room. Suddenly, Edward held her back. He wept more and asked for her forgiveness. He said he couldn’t do anything without her and he knew how much pain he had caused her. That night changed everything; Sophia decided to forgive him wholeheartedly.

Sophia realised that forgiveness is one of the most painful decisions we can make. We know that somehow we’re supposed to forgive, but when we step right up to it, we feel as though we’re being asked to turn ourselves inside out, tear out our hearts, and give them into the hands of our enemy. That was how she felt.

It wasn’t an easy decision but was a decision she had to make to move on with her life. Of course, Edward did hurt her, he made a decision that caused them gravely but holding un-forgiveness could also destroy her.

You can’t heal until you forgive. Jesus used the analogy of setting someone free from a prison. When we get wounded by our spouse, what we do is we throw them in a little prison inside of our hearts, and we say, ‘You owe me, you hurt me, and I’m not going to set you free,’ But Scripture says it only poisons us. Its only messing with our lives, and it messes with us spiritually with our relationship with God. Forgiveness is not saying that what they did was okay or they’re going to get away with it. It’s saying that I’m releasing my anger; I’m releasing this person out of a prison in my heart. I’m turning them over to the Lord; I’m turning my anger over to the Lord. God is judge, he’s going to deal with them, and I’m going to show them mercy just like Christ showed me on the cross.

 

Another Christmas was just around the corner but the betrayal and pain turned to a blessing as Sophia fell in love with the little baby. Since the child was abandoned in front of their drive way, she had no name, not even from her own mother but that Christmas, Sophia gave her the name, ‘Kathleen’ meaning ‘Pure’. She finally had a name that brought a new beginning, new hope; she was blameless and pure before her. Sophia felt God was telling her something, God had fearfully created the little child for his purpose and no matter the circumstances she was given birth into, that would not change the plans of God for her life.

 

Kathleen’s eyes grew wide when she heard her name mentioned as the baby. This was the first time she would ever hear this story; she stared at her mother in disbelief.

Sophia stared back at her; fear and uncertainty filled her. She wasn’t sure what to expect from her daughter, what the new revelation would do to her.

“Please say something.” Sophia’s voice was barely a whisper. “Please…”

Kathleen wore a blank expression so it was difficult to know what exactly she was thinking. “So, what happened to your sister, Susan?” she asked, looking straight into her eyes.

Sophia felt uncomfortable at that question; she took her eyes away from the intense gaze of her daughter.

“Mom.” Kathleen’s voice echoed through her mind.

Hot tears now stung her eyes and began rolling down her cheeks. Sophia made no attempt to wipe them. “She died seven years later; drug overdose.” she stiffened.

“We were called one day by some hospital to come claim her body; they said our names and numbers were listed as her emergency contact,” she brushed her hands through her hair. ‘Can you believe that?’ the question was more to herself.

“We had not seen nor heard from her for seven good years: no calls, no letters, nothing.” She wiped the tears from her cheeks. “Just to claim her body.” Sophia rested her aching back against the couch. “I was so angry, so furious that I wouldn’t even go with your father to the hospital; God!” her hands were beginning to tremble.

“I was so mad: not only for sleeping with my husband but also for leaving me. She shook her head in dismay. “he lived a kind of life that it was just a matter of time before she dropped dead and she knew but cared less.” She rubbed her hands on her chest, to stop the pain forming there.
Kathleen swallowed hard.
She looked softly at Kathleen, “You have to know that she was my only family; we lost our parents while we were young, she was all I had and she did this to me. She just had to let herself die.” She said in tears. “I hated her so much that I did not attend her funeral; your father, he took care of the funeral arrangement, and the small possession she had. I would not even read the letters or go through the things she left for me, I just couldn’t. “

Kathleen stood up from the bed and started to pace in the room. Her heart was racing so fast. She felt so much sadness all around her and for the first time, she realized she wasn’t the only person hurting; she wasn’t the only person in pain. All these betrayals and hurt had been all around her for many years.

Sophia saw the fear in her eyes, but that wasn’t the whole story. She wanted to tell her daughter how much she loved her despite all that had happened. She stood up and slowly walked up to her.

“You have to know that I never stopped loving you Kathleen, you became the only thing that mattered in my life, and you are my joy.” She reached out to hold her, this time Kathleen made no attempt to jerk away.

Kathleen broke down into tears.

Sophia held her in a tight embrace. Then, they both sat on the bed. “I know at some point I panicked; when you started those behaviours, I was scared of losing you, and I was scared of you becoming my sister. I remembered the way she started, the shouting at our parents, the life she lived so I freaked out at you but that didn’t mean I didn’t love you, Kathleen.” She said in tears.

Kathleen looked into her mother’s eyes and saw the pain there.

“Mom… I am my mother’s daughter; the very thing that betrayed you, the very thing that destroyed your home, I did that same thing to you mom.” she broke down into more tears clutching to her knees.

Sophia went down with her. “No, don’t say that.” She tried to bring her up, but she wouldn’t let her.
“What have I done?” Kathleen cried out. “I thought I was getting back at you but I was only destroying the best thing in my life.”

“Please, stop.” Sophia cried out. “Please…”

 

To be continued.

 

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A New Thing

 

Here is the word of God for you today. “For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19

The Lord is doing a new thing in your life; He’s making your path smooth, and clearing the way for you. The stone the builders rejected will become the chief corner stone. He will make a way for you and make every crooked place, straight.

I charge you therefore to stay focus on the Lord, get rooted in His Word; there, you will find answers to all those questions haunting you, you will find peace and have a great future. The Lord told Joshua, ‘Do not let the book of the Law depart out of your mouth, but mediate on it day and night, then you will have good success and your ways prosperous.’ Joshua 1:8.

For you to be a part-taker of God’s blessing this month; you have to speak His Word into your life; you have to get rooted in His word, you have to proclaim his blessing upon your household, you have to take authority. Don’t just sit around waiting for things to change, waiting for a promotion, waiting for your blessings to come. Get up, proclaim it into your life, and speak peace into your home. Command every tree the Lord has not planted to be uprooted, decree every shut door to your success to be open. The bible says, you shall decree a thing and it shall be established and light shall shine upon it. Decree the blessing of God right now!

Yes, the Lord will do a new thing in your life, but you have to be ready to receive it, you have to see it coming, you have to stand your guard to take what belongs to you. In the midst of all the confusion in this world, you will need a light on your path to see it coming. The Word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path. Do you want to see the new thing the Lord is doing? You need the Word to shine light on your path; to see the blessing of the Lord coming to you; you need the Word to proclaim it into your life.

The word of God is powerful; the word of God is life and the word of God is living. Speak His word into your life this day, declare his promises and remind him of His words in your life. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are God’s ways higher than our ways and His thoughts than our thoughts. As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is God’s word that goes out from His mouth: It will not return to Him empty, but will accomplish what He desires and achieve the purpose for which He sent it. You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands. Instead of the thorn-bush will grow the pine tree, and instead of briers the myrtle will grow. This will be for the Lord’s renown, for an everlasting sign, which will not be destroyed.” – Isaiah 55.

The Lord is doing a new thing folks, don’t miss it! Get back to the Word, and He will reveal much greater things to you. And guess what? We are part of a winning team!

Happy New Month.

 

  © Circlesoflove 2014

 

 

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My PAIN, My Gain

Chapter One

My name is Kathleen Coker, and I hate my life. That might sound harsh to you, but wait until you read my story. I am ruthless, selfish, wicked and all together despise the things I have done. In as much as I feel bad about my life, nevertheless, don’t you dare judge me until you know my pain. My pain however has been my source of strength; the raging pain I feel inside of me has carried me on for so long; my pain is what keeps me alive.

People are afraid of themselves, of their own reality; their feelings most of all. People talk about how great love is, but that’s rubbish. Love hurts. Feelings are disturbing. People are taught that pain is evil and dangerous. How can they deal with love if they’re afraid to feel? Pain is meant to wake us up. People try to hide their pain. But they’re wrong. Pain is something to carry, like a radio. You feel your strength in the experience of pain. It’s all in how you carry it. That’s what matters. Pain is a feeling. Your feelings are a part of you. Your own reality. If you feel ashamed of them, and hide them, you’re letting society destroy your reality. You should stand up for your right to feel your pain.[1]

I feel pain in every aspect of my life; no one seems to understand me. My story may not be different from everyday life, but this is my life; this is what I’ve been through, this is the kind of life I lived, this is me; I am Kathleen Coker.

 

 

Chapter Two

It’s 7:30 am. Kathleen woke up with a pounding headache.

“Oh no,” she murmured. “another Monday.” She sighed, turning to the other side of the bed.

Her countenance turned to sadness when she saw the other side of the bed ruffled. She had come home quite drunk last night, and could not even give full account of how she got into her bedroom, but she knew her step father had passed the night here; his shirt lying there on the floor was a confirmation. She knew he was one man who would always take advantage of a helpless woman, not to talk of a drunken one.

She felt the nagging headache and tiredness in her body, but she knew no matter how she felt, that wouldn’t stop her from going to work this morning.

 

Kathleen had dropped out of school at the age of fifteen; a year before she completed her secondary school education. Despite all scolding, and begging from her mother, none of it mattered to her and no one could change her mind. Her father had died in a motor accident at the age of twelve, leaving her mother, Sophia to solely take care of her. She had started her rebellious ways shortly after her mother re-married, and Kathleen never for once accepted the new addition to the family. No amount of pleading and shouting changed her mind. A few weeks after she had dropped out of school, she announced she had found a job as a waitress in a fast food restaurant.

This behaviour had been so appalling and frustrating for her mother; nothing she did was enough to change her daughter’s behaviour. It became a constant battle between them and a struggle to keep her marriage and her daughter altogether.

Chapter Three
Kathleen says:

My mother had always thought my rebellion was as a result of losing my father, but unknown to her; her new husband, Paul had been molesting me for many years. ‘How does a young girl tell her mother she’d been molested, raped and abused without feeling the alienation, humiliation and sadness in her life?’

I had just turned fourteen when my mother introduced me to the new man who is now her husband, she asked me if I was okay with it but of course, what would you expect of me?

I was furious, angry and so very disappointed at her. I told her I wasn’t interested in whoever she married as long as I don’t have to call him ‘Dad’. That was the exact answer I gave to her that day, but mom wasn’t happy about my attitude towards her husband. She told me I would understand better when I grow older. I honestly didn’t understand; I couldn’t comprehend why she would need another man, after all, Dad had so much money before he died and I knew money wasn’t a problem so why would she bring another man into our house, especially a man who defiled and ruined my life. I hated her for what she did. She’d brought the criminal into our house and she should be responsible for every pain and hurt he caused me.

The day that broke me into pieces, made me who I became was on the 15th of August. Before this day that had turned the course of my life around, I had been a little bit relaxed with my mom since she announced she was having a baby. The thought of a baby in the house made me secretly happy. I was going to have someone to call my brother or sister but all these turned sour that particular night. Mom was rushed to the hospital as she suddenly had a miscarriage. I was so angry and sad at this news, most especially scared of losing the only family I had left.

Paul repeatedly assured me mom would be fine especially the few nights she had to spend in the hospital. He took special care of me, and for the first time in months I knew him, I felt protected, loved and cared for. I felt I had been childish all along and should give him a chance. You know the feeling you have when you know someone is watching over you, but this didn’t last for long. I had been wrong. This particular night, I had gone to bed relieved and happy that mom would be discharged the following day and even made a resolution to take things easier with her. I made so many promises like, never be rude to my mother again, listen to every instruction, help out in the house and so on.

That particular night, I was fast asleep when I felt someone pulling the cover away from my body; I opened my eyes slightly, and saw my step father standing over me. His smile was unpleasant and something in me told me to run but I couldn’t. I asked him what he wanted but he looked hard at me, at that instance, I knew this was it. Within seconds, he pinned me down on the bed and held my hands tightly together. I screamed, shouted and scratched him but nothing worked. I told him I would tell my mother and cried telling him to stop. Suddenly I felt a cold metal on my neck. He looked straight into my eyes and brought the cold knife for me to see and said he would kill me if I ever tell anyone about this. I was numb, and scared to death.

I know many of you have read or seen stories like this before, but this horrific experience and fear I felt that day was something I had never encountered before. I begged, cried, whispered, shouted, and then did what a child could do to save her life, I laid down there and allowed him rape me. He thrust so hard into me that I felt my whole body shivered in pain; I felt bruised and repeated pain in me. After he was done, he jeered at me and told me to be the good little girl I have always been.

That was the turnaround for me. I cried that night and that was the last time I ever cried like that again, and the last time I ever prayed. I mean, where was God when all these were happening to a child like me, why didn’t he save me? Why did my mother bring that pig into our home, to defile and destroy me? They all caused it. The people I loved so much in life, the ones I trusted to protect me were never there. They had no excuse; this should never have happened if my Dad was alive. I felt the same God whom I love took my dad away and still allowed this evil in my house.

Mom came back as expected the following day but my promises never held up, in fact, I became ruthless, rebellious; I felt a kind of anger towards them. I hated what my mom turned me into and blamed her for everything that ever happened to me. Telling her about her husband was out of it, at first I was scared but when his visit became more frequent, I adjusted and just lived with it. Paul’s visit became part of my life, they were my pain and I needed that pain to survive. I don’t know if that made sense to me then but I just couldn’t stop him or stop myself. We were never friends or lovers, just sex mates. I got so addicted to it. He made me do so many despicable things but after a while, I got used to it. I told you I was rebellious, and cared less what my body went through.

I honestly don’t know how I survived those days, turning into weeks, months and years but I knew I gave up on life. I had no purpose, no destination; I had nothing except the untold pain inside of me.

Now, almost eight years later, things have just been the same. All grown up, but still live in the shadow of my past. My life has become a constant battle and regret. My step father still comes in to rape me or rather have sex with me. Well, I wouldn’t call it rape anymore since I am fully aware, and consciously given my full consent to it. It became a silent deed between the two of us; he comes in to do his business, like he owns me or something. In fact, I had no idea what life was anymore. It’s not like someone coming in to ask for permission or something. He doesn’t come in to ask, ‘Hey Kathleen, can I have sex with you this evening?’. He just joins me in bed and does his business, no words spoken, nothing, just a numb transaction. But can you believe mom still never found out? I turned from a rape victim into a mistress sleeping with her mother’s husband. But now, I feel so terrible, oh yes, the pain is still there but my life has been filled with so much regret and mistakes that I can’t go back to amend.

 

The worst of it now is that mom has been diagnosed with ovarian cancer; another shock to my life. She’s in the final stage of cancer, and nothing can be done for her, only to manage the pain and prepare her for death. That was the exact sentence the doctor said to me. Now, you can see how ruthless I am, my mom dying of cancer and me still sleeping with her husband. I don’t know how I turned from being a victim to the culprit. Maybe I have been evil all the while; Paul only brought that out to the open. He was just a phase in my life, this is exactly who I am, a cold blooded, ruthless and evil person.

Now, let me tell you more about myself.

 

 

Chapter Four

Present day

Kathleen ran into the changing room at the restaurant where she’d been working for eight years. Closing the door behind her, she found Mrs. Jones waiting there for her. She had a stern look on her face.

“Before you say anything, I am so sorry.” She pleaded to her boss.

“Sorry! You are an hour late for your shift.” Mrs. Jones said.

“I am sorry. I was tied up, I mean, traffic was so bad, I couldn’t…..” She saw the angry look on her face and knew whatever excuses she made up this time wouldn’t work, so she turned to her sorry face to woo her over.

“I am so sorry ma’am.” She smiled at her and went quickly to hug her.

Mrs. Jones had taken likeness to Kathleen since the first day she walked into the restaurant, and asked for a job. She had been so impressed by her hard work and commitment to the job even after all these years. No matter how angry she was with her, she was still her best employee, and part of her sees her like family. She knew Kathleen never missed her weekend fun which always made her late to work every Monday morning, so she had waited impatiently for her in the changing room. Her smiles and charm are always irresistible and no matter how angry she was; she would always look past her all that.

 

Kathleen says:

Only if my boss knew the constant tears I have caused her. It all started about a year after I started working in the restaurant; I had finished my shift one evening and was walking home when a car suddenly pulled up to me. I looked into the car and realized it was my boss’s husband, Mr. Jones; he offered me a ride which I innocently accepted. He’d been to the restaurant several times and there was nothing unusual in this behaviour until I got into his car that day. He started to touch me right there in the car. I was shocked; he was old enough to be my father, but isn’t Paul and yet, they chose to have their way with me? The next encounter I had with him was in a hotel where we started to meet every fortnight. I don’t know why I did all these, I knew it was bad but that didn’t stop me.

 

This wasn’t about a man taking advantage of a young girl; this was me destroying lives, homes and myself. I was angry about life and this was the only way I could manage it. Those that know me would never imagine I did all these. I mean, I looked harmless. They all see me as this pretty young hard working girl. I wasn’t rude or anything, well, just to my mom but to every other person, I was the best friend, best employee and probably best girl friend to those interested.

 

I’m sure some of you have decided to hate me already. Why on earth would I sleep with another woman’s husband, especially the same woman who took me under her wings and treated me like her own daughter? I honestly don’t have an answer to that; I don’t understand what these older men saw in me and I honestly don’t know why I never resisted or just walk away. Mrs. Jones is one of the nicest people I ever met; she’d been kind to me and never did anything against me. I am the perfect young girl to her, ambitious and hard working. All our customers always find delight in me and would always come back because of the services they received at the restaurant. But this same young girl has done despicable things, things I cannot even put into writing. My life has become a shamble. I hate it so much but can’t end it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Five

 

Sophia sat in the living room, waiting patiently for her daughter to return from work. She was hoping to have some quality time with Kathleen since Paul was away on a business trip. She realized the short time she had left and hoped she could break into her daughter. She knew Kathleen had been avoiding her since the news of her illness. She understood what that will do to her; all she wanted now is to have her daughter in her life. So many things had happened in the past, the pain and hurt Kathleen had caused her. She was tired of the pain and bitterness, and since time was not on her side; the little left was all she had and hoped Kathleen would give that to her.

Sophia wasn’t sure how long she had but knew it won’t be long. Her pain had increased daily knowing her daughter would be left alone in this world and that alone broken her heart. These past few months, she’d been trying to remain strong for her daughter, not that Kathleen noticed but regardless, she hoped she would come around and it wouldn’t be too late.

How do you have a child and never understand or know her? Before the death of her first husband, Kathleen had always been a daddy’s girl. She was hoping she would have her turn when Kathleen grows into her teens, but things had turned sour and till this day, she never had a chance; no matter how she tried, nothing she did worked.

A few months into her marriage to Paul, she had regretted her actions and wished she never re-married; maybe things would not have gotten this bad.

Sophia turned to see the door open and saw her daughter walked in.

“Hello Kath; how was your day?” She asked.

“Fine.” Kathleen answered. She had been hoping her mother would be in her room.

“I made you some dinner.” Sophia smile.

“You shouldn’t have. I already had dinner at work.” She said calmly.

“Oh!” Sophia whispered; feeling disappointed.

Kathleen saw the sad expression on her face and felt guilt. “But that’s ok; I can have it tomorrow at work.” She said, and started to walk to her room.

“Kath!” Sophia called. “I was hoping we could talk.”

Kath turned to look at her. “This night?” She raised her eyebrows.

“If you don’t mind.”

Kathleen murmured something under her breath. She wanted to tell her she was tired but saw the pain in her eyes. “Ok, give me few minutes to take a shower.”

Alright.” Sophia’s face lilted up; she smiled as she watched her go off to her room.

*****

Kathleen shut the door behind her and started to take off her work clothes to have a shower. Then, she heard her phone vibrate. It was a message from Collins.

 

Kathleen says:

Now, let me tell you about Collins. He’s a guy I started to chat with on the internet. I met through Facebook a few months ago, although I have to tell you that I have met a lot of guys through Facebook; just long chatting and all. Some, I have meet in person, and you know how that always goes. I mean, those who live locally but those who stay abroad, we just continue to have fun through the internet.

However, Collins seems different, although, they all always seem different, they try to be nice to you online; keep you going with chats and all but when you see them in person, you realize they are all the same and only after just one thing- your body. Collins lived in South Africa. We talk about everything, work, movies and all. He also talked about good living, he called it ‘Christian living’ but don’t they all? I mean, they talk about being a Christian, but that does not change who they are.

To cut my story short, he just sent a message that he is in Nigeria for a short break; apparently, he is from Nigeria but worked in South Africa. But again, I’ve had so many so called friends who come for short breaks or whatever they call it, and they all still want the same thing.

My curiosity had the better of me as I had been day dreaming and thinking of Collins. Don’t know why but something about him intrigues me. I felt butterflies in my stomach as I hurried to take my shower and came out shortly to continue my chat with him. He sent me the hotel address he was staying, and we both agreed to see the following day after work.

 

*****

 

About two hours later, Sophia realized Kathleen wasn’t coming back to her so she decided to go to her room, but found her sleeping. Her heart sunk in dismay since she had been looking forward to this time. Again, another day is gone and never to be used again. A day marked away from her lifetime. She closed the door and went sadly to her room.

 

Chapter Six

Kathleen woke up the next morning feeling like she’d left something undone. She later realized while in the shower that she had left her mother waiting up for her yesterday. Again, she felt guilty about this, but not guilty enough to do something about it. She hurried off to work and thought taking the food her mother made yesterday might do some good.

Today was like any other day, great customers, busy in the kitchen, baking pies and all together a satisfying day. She always took pride in her hard working and nothing gives her joy than to see every day a success.

The thought of seeing Collins that evening had been so exciting and made her day worthwhile. She took a cab to the hotel. Her heart raced as she was about to see the young man she’d been chatting with for over two years for the first time. She went to his room and knocked.

Collins opened almost immediately

“Hi!” She said shyly.

“Hello.” Collins smiled, letting her in. It’s so good to finally meet you in person.” He wasn’t sure if he should hug or give a handshake, so he did neither.

Kathleen smiled too, trying to control the excitement she felt inside. “Me too; it’s nice to see you.”

Collins chuckled. “You look different from your pictures online.”

“How? She was curious to know what he meant.

“I mean, different, like more beautiful.” He smiled.

Kathleen couldn’t hide the blush on her face. “Oh, thank you.”

“Maybe it’s about time to change your profile picture so we can see the real Kathleen.”

Kathleen laughed at his words. “Well, you are not too bad yourself; only taller than I had imagined.”

“Really? Thank you.” He beamed a smile. “Is that a compliment?” he asked, smirking.

“Well, I think it is.” She replied.

“Alright, what can I offer my guest?” he asked.

“Oh, any wine will do.”  She smiled.

“Wine? That might be a problem.” He said. “Can you believe they have just alcoholic wine here at this hotel?” he said.

Kathleen was taken back. Of course, what else should they have?she thought to herself.

“I have requested some fruit wine which they just ran out off, but promised tomorrow.”
“Oh, that’s ok.” Kathleen murmured, not knowing what to say. “Any juice will do.”

“Alright then, give me a few minutes.” Collins took his keys and hastily went out of the room.

 

Kathleen took a careful look at the room, not that there was anything different, just a hotel room. She put her bag on the floor to relax properly on the chair; she had packed a pair of clothing for the following day since she had planned to sleep over.

A few minutes later, Collins came back into the room with some cans of drink and some pies.

“Thank you.”

“You are welcome.”

They talked and chatted all through the evening. The longer she stayed with him, the longer she wanted him. The dimples on his face made him irresistible; the excitement and increased heart beat made it so impossible watching him speak without touching him. Then, he said the unthinkable.

He glanced at his watch. “Oh, I have taken so much of your time. You should leave now before it gets too dark.” He stood up.

Kathleen gasped in disbelief; she was not expecting to leave this

Collins noticed her reaction to his words. “Did I say anything wrong?” he asked, confused.

The more he stood there, the more she wanted him. Kathleen was out of her mind, unable to resist him; she stood up and covered his mouth in a longing kiss.

Collins carefully pulled away from her. “Whoa!” he let out a soft laugh.

Kathleen was becoming angry by his attitude. “What?” She said angrily. “Isn’t that what you came for?”

“What?” he looked confused.

Kathleen stared furiously at him.

Then he realized what she meant. “Oh, you mean, this?” making gesture with his hands.

“What exactly are you doing?” She raised her voice. “Isn’t this the reason you came, all the long chats and all?” she asked.

“You mean I travelled almost 3,000 miles just to have sex with you?” He blurted out.

Kathleen flashed an angry look, embarrassed at his outburst. She took her bag and started to walk towards the door.

Collins quickly followed her. “I am so sorry.” He blushed; embarrassed. “I’m sorry.”

He took her bag away from her and led her to the couch.

“I think there was a miscommunication somewhere and I am sorry for this.”  He apologized, looking straight into her eyes. “Alright, see, I like you, I like you so much. Talking to you these past two years has done something to me. I mean, I know I don’t know you enough but that’s why I kept at it and then made a decision to come here to know you.” He smiled softly.

Kathleen was shocked at his words and her effort to hide this was unsuccessful.  Why would he want to know her?

“Why are you shocked?” he chuckled.

“I don’t understand.” She said. “I mean, it’s either you are joking or out of your mind.” She added.

“What! Why?” he asked.

“You just said you flew 3,000 miles to come here just to know me.” She said. “Me?” she questioned.

“Yes and I am not sorry about that. I have grown to like you and want to know if you feel the same.” He said.

She scoffed. “This is absurd. Honestly.” She stood up.

“You don’t believe me?” He followed her.

“Of course I don’t.” she blurted out. “I have met your kind, they all say the same thing and at the end, they want just one thing.”

“I’m different.” Collins defended himself.

“How different?” She faced him.

“I want to know you better; I want to know all you have been through, who you are, likewise, I want you to know me.” He said.

“Really.” Kathleen chuckled.

“I’m serious; this is not about your body; in fact, I have no intention of doing that.” He looked straight at her.

Kathleen straightened, looking straight into his eyes.

“Please, give me a chance in your life. I have few weeks to spend in Nigeria and this is all because of you.” He said.

“You are asking for something impossible.” She looked away from him.

“Nothing is impossible Kathleen.” He smiled at her.

Kathleen took a long look at him again. “I have to go now, as you said, it’s getting dark.” She opened the door.

“Alright.” Collins said, feeling a little disappointed. “When do I see you again?”

“I don’t know.” She answered.

“Kathleen.” He called out, going to stand in front of her. “I’m really sorry if I have done or said anything to hurt you this evening, please.” He looked sorry. “But I truly like you.”

The truth in his eyes scared her, she knew she had to get away from him and most importantly send him packing from her life.

“Good night Collins.” She said and walked quickly away from him.

Kathleen hailed for a Cab and couldn’t wait to get home. She was angry, embarrassed and so out of it. ‘Who does he think he is?’ She shouted out as she sat there in the cab. The Driver was taken back at her outburst.

She felt Collins had no right to say those things to her, I mean, she is Kathleen Coker.

 

Chapter Seven

Sophia sat quietly in her daughter’s room; she’d been sitting there for more than thirty minutes staring aimlessly into the thin air, but her heart was heavy and full of pain. She had waited for Kathleen to come back downstairs yesterday, but to her disappointment, she found her sleeping and this morning, she had left the house at the early hours of the day.

She realized Kathleen was avoiding her which wasn’t new, but right now, she was tired of the hide and seek games from her. They have both played that game too well for several years; avoiding each other or any confrontation and that has made their relationship strained. Although, Sophia blamed herself for not trying enough or doing things differently, rather she gave up on her daughter, but now she prayed and hoped for a second chance, a chance to make things better.

A few minutes later, she heard the door downstairs and knew Kathleen was back.

 

Kathleen quietly walked into the living room; seeing her mother wasn’t waiting up for her was a relief; at least, she wouldn’t have to face another episode of so called mothering love. She hastily climbed the stairs leading to her bedroom, opened the door and froze for a few seconds when she saw her mother sitting on her bed.

“Hello Kathleen.” Her mother greeted.

“Mom!” She took her gaze away from her and walked to the dressing table to drop her bag.

Sophia straightened; she followed her with her eyes. “How was work today?” she asked, trying to ease into the conversation.

Kathleen let out a soft sigh. “Good.” She replied, and then, stopped to look at her. “I’m sorry about yesterday, I slept off.” She said with a blank expression on her face.

“That’s okay.” Sophia managed a smile. “I gathered you must have been so tired.” She stopped for a second to get her attention. “I was hoping we could spend some time together now.”

Kathleen let out another sigh. “Not tonight mom; I am so tired.” She answered; she had hoped to get her head together after today’s meeting with Collins.

Sophia frowned with disappointment. All she wanted was just a moment of her time, but she felt her daughter cared less about anything, not even the fact that she was dying and wouldn’t even think to be a little nicer to her.

“When?” She asked.

“Later mom!”

“When would that be?” She asked wearily; she tried not to raise her voice. “When exactly are you going to have time for me? All I want is a quality time with my daughter but no, she wouldn’t give that to me”.

Kathleen gasped at the tone of her voice. “What exactly do you want from me?” she shouted. “What do you want from me Mom?”

“I want you to be my daughter.” Sophia whimpered.

“Since when?” she folded her hand around her chest.

“What!” Sophia froze at her words.

“Since when do you want me to be your daughter?” she asked again.

“What are you saying?” Sophia asked, standing up.

“You know what mom? You are so selfish and I am sick and tired of everyone telling me what they want from me.” She threw her hands in the air as a sign of frustration.

“All you ever wanted is just for you; just for yourself. You have never thought for once that I needed a mother; a mother to be there for me.” She shouted.

“I have always been your mother Kath,” she shouted back with her fragile voice. “Even when you never gave me the chance, I was there for you; I supported all your decisions, I stood with and by you despite all your disappointment and rebellion.” Her breathing became rapid and shallow.

Kathleen scoffed in irritation. “Now, I am a disappointment to you!” She gasped in disbelief at her words; quickly, she wiped the tears threatening to pour down her face.

Sophia took a step backward; she had not thought of the words before saying it out.

“Fine! What exactly do you want from a disappointment like me?”

Sophia saw the pain in her voice and that broke her heart. All the while, she had always thought her daughter was strong and nothing could get to her, but now, she realized that, underneath those strong headed child is her baby who is hurting, in pain and broken inside.

“I am sorry.” Sophia said in a shaky voice. “I didn’t mean to say that.” She moved closer to hold her, but Kathleen jerked away from her.

“Sure you did Mom!” She moved farther away from her. “You can’t fool me; I can see the disappointment, the regret all over you.” She said in tears. “In fact, you always felt I should have died instead of the miscarriage you had.”

“What!” Sophia gasped. “Don’t you ever say that Kath!”
“I see it all over you; I see it the way you look at me, I see it every day mom; You wish you had a chance to make things right with your new baby, to make her a perfect child, the one that would always make you smile, the one you would be proud of, but you lost it. You wished it was me instead of her.” She shouted out in tears.

“I have never for once in my life regretted to have you as my daughter.” Sophia choked back tears.

“C’mon mom,” she let out a weak laugh. “You just said I was a disappointment to you.” Kathleen retorted.

“You are a part of me Kathleen, the only thing left of your father in my life and I will never trade that for anything.” She placed her hands on her chest.

Kathleen scoffed. “My Father!” she looked straight into her eyes. “My Father was the only good thing in my life and that died a long time ago.”

Sophia leaned against the wall; her feet wouldn’t hold her much longer, especially the thought of her first love and husband broke her, not to talk of her only child rejecting her love and sacrifices all these years.

“You are my daughter Kath.” Her voice became more than a whisper. She put her hands on her forehead to relieve the ache forming there. “And I love you so much, so much that it breaks my heart everyday that you never for once accepted me.” She stopped to wipe the tears bunching in her eyes. “I love you my dear and nothing took your place in my life and nothing will take it.”

Kathleen’s anger rose within her, and her breathing became shallow and rapid. She wanted to scream out and unleash the anger within her. “Did you say nothing can take my place in your life? Mom, something already took my place in your life.” She looked straight into her eyes. “You left me Mom; you left me all alone and sure don’t make any difference if you are dying now.”

Sophia felt a sharp pain in her chest. Hot tears now stung her eyes and began rolling down her cheeks

“What…” Sophia whimpered.

“There’s no pretending here mom; this is me and this is you,” she gestured with her hands. “It never worked then, and nothing is going to work now even if you are dying.”

“Kathleen!” Sophia called out quietly with streams of tears pouring down her face. “I have just a little time to spend with you; all I’m asking for is a chance, a chance to make things right.”

“It’s too late mom.” Kathleen whimpered, and walked into the bathroom, slamming the door behind her.

Sophia jolted at the sound of the door; she stood there drenched in tears; she felt as if everything was tearing apart. After few seconds of staring at the bathroom door, she turned back and walked quietly to her room.

 

 

*****

 

 

Getting to her room, she collapsed on the floor; clutching her knees up to her chest. The more she tried to make things right, the more difficult it became. Nothing made sense to her now and for the first time since she was diagnosed with cancer, and given few months to live; she felt death should come take her right away. There is no point fighting to live when nobody cares for her, and not even her own daughter or her so-called husband, Paul, who had been nothing but disaster right from the beginning.

Her marriage to Paul was more of desperation than love; it was all to get away from the crouching claws of her in-laws who started to make life difficult for her when her husband died. All they wanted was her money, and properties; they didn’t take recognition of herself and her daughter. There were so many disputes over who would survive their son since he had no male child to carry on the family name. Nothing made sense to her. Why couldn’t they consider her daughter as the heir to her husband’s property, why wouldn’t they think of the years she had worked so hard with her husband to build his company? This is her life, not theirs but they would not relent and swore to make life a living hell for them.

Sophia however did the only thing she thought was right; she got married to keep them off. She felt another man in the house would make them back-off to enable them live the rest of their lives in peace. True to this, they did leave them alone after Paul himself made life a living hell for them. A few years later, Sophia and her daughter were officially disowned by her late husband’s family and they swore never to be part of their lives again and utterly disowned her daughter.

 

She stood up from the floor and helped herself to the rocking chair by her bed; she felt she couldn’t carry on like this. There was more to this that Kathleen didn’t know about; the secrets that pierced her heart every day. What would happen if Kathleen actually knew the truth about who she really was? She’d tried to hide the truth all these years, just not for herself but for the future of her daughter. If Kathleen would not accept her now, what would happen if she knew the whole truth?

“Help me Lord…” she groaned in tears. “I have tried Lord; I have done all.” She broke down into more tears.

Has she really done all she could do? Over the years, she had thought everything she was doing is all for the benefit of Kathleen, to secure her future and make life easier for her. She taught her the way of the Lord right from a young age, she even led her to Christ at the age of eight but everything turned around after the death of her husband and it became a battle even after she got married to Paul. Kathleen became a different person, she would scream and shout at every provocation and the best Sophia thought she could do at that time was to leave her alone. She was scared she might send her right into the darkness if she fought back but now, she questioned her decision. Maybe Kathleen was right after all, she had left her all alone, she left her to face the world all by herself.

 

Sophia broke down into more tears. How can she make things right now, how can she make her daughter see that she really loved her? Is the secret worth telling or forever sealed up? Those thought weighed heavily on her.

 

 

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Don’t fight spiritual matters with physical means.

Good morning Folks,

Don’t fight spiritual matters with physical means.

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, 6 and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled. 2 Corinthians 10:3-6

 

Speak into your life; destroy every yoke of the enemy in your life, rebuke every devourer, anything that has held you down for so long, command them out of your life. Speak power into your life; let every situation obey the word of God.

 

The Lord has given you power to pull down anything that is not of God, He has given you authority in the name of Jesus. Is there anything in your life that shouldn’t be there or is there something that should be there but far from your reach: your blessing, your victory, your deliverance, your peace, your prosperity? Decree that the strong eastern wing will bring back anything that the enemy may have stolen in your life, maybe due to  our own carelessness or whatever means, speak them back into your life. The Lord has given you authority to uproot every plant that He has not planted in your life.

 

The voice of the Lord is over the waters;

The God of glory thunders;

The Lord is over many waters.

 

The voice of the Lord is powerful;

The voice of the Lord is full of majesty.

The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars,

Yes, the Lord splinters the cedars of Lebanon.

 

He makes them also skip like a calf,

Lebanon and Sirion like a young wild ox.

The voice of the Lord divides the flames of fire.

 

The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness;

The Lord shakes the Wilderness of Kadesh.

The voice of the Lord makes the deer give birth,

And strips the forests bare;

And in His temple everyone says, “Glory!” Psalm 29

 

Happy Sunday Folks

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Finding Love – Excerpt from the Circles of Love Magazine

Mariam was about going downstairs when she heard voices down the hallway; it was his mother shouting angrily and Daniel also raising his voice at her. Curiosity made her move few steps towards the door and then heard some of the things they were saying.

“You had no right Daniel, you had no right.” His mother shouted angrily.

“Mom, this is my life and I can choose to live it whichever way I want.” Daniel shouted back.

“I sure didn’t raise a callous man like you; did London turn you into this or is it the Muslim girl you suddenly brought home who has turned you this way?”

“For the tenth time mom, she is not a Muslim. Mariam is a Christian and a born again Christian for that matter.” He countered.

“So why is she called Mariam Idris?” she said out of spite.

“That is her name and that does not define her religion. She is a Christian and from a Christian family; yes she is from the northern part but even if she is a Muslim, I love her and have made my decision.” He blurted out.

“You dare not Daniel Muyiwa Badmus.” She shouted back at him. “What about your poor wife, the woman who had waited all these years for you to come back home, where would you put her?”

Mariam felt her heart sunk. “Wife!” she shuddered. She definitely knew nothing about any wife.

“She is not my wife!” his voice jolted her. “For God’s sake mom, I just got back and instead of you to be happy, we are here shouting at each other.” He spoke out of tiredness. “Aren’t you happy I’m home?”

Then, there was silence in the room.

“I am happy you are home, but not happy about the trash you brought in here.” She spoke out angrily.

Mariam felt her heart skipped a beat. His mother had just called her a trash. Suddenly, she felt the tears bunching in her eyes. This wasn’t what she had expected, in fact, she had no idea what was going on. Before she could pull herself together, the door opened and her eyes locked with Daniel. Suddenly, the tears rolled down her cheeks, she stared at him for several seconds and turned to go when she noticed the other lady who probably had been standing behind her for a while, also drenched in tears.

Then it started to make sense. The lady was probably the wife his mother was referring to, and that was their son she was holding in the picture. Mariam looked from the lady back to Daniel and turned away quickly into the room.

***** 

This is an excerpt from the third edition of our magazine. Please order your copy here or go to our E-Magazine section to read the full story and other inspirational stories. Please note that you can order your copy from any part of the world.

God Bless.
 

 

Finding Love – Excerpt from the Circles of Love Magazine

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Rejected, but Rising Up

Have you been rejected, or tossed aside? You know, the very people whom you have great respect for, those you love and call ‘family’ are the VERY people who have rejected you. Maybe they are not totally out of your life, but they have rejected your abilities, your potentials, they have rejected you ever getting up or making it in life. You can’t even make comments or contributions in words in their presence; they think you add no value to them now because of your status or the amount in your bank account. You can’t speak up in family functions or even in the midst of friends. You have been scorned, rejected and disowned by the very people you love.

Psalm 118: 22 says, ‘The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone’.  Did you notice that it said, ‘the builders’? Who better should know about stones than the very builders who used it; the ones you should expect more from, the people that daily make use of these materials, the people that you live with and should know you better. The builders rejected the stone. Is it a loved one who has rejected you? Maybe due to one failure or the other; or a setback in your life or even during the struggles of life? Is it a partner who has looked down on your ability or your potentials? You will be amazed at how some couples, husband or wife has rejected the other party; they can’t seem to see anything good in them.

Is it a wife who has trampled her husband’s reputation on the ground because of his financial situation? She has looked down on him and tossed him aside because of setbacks in life. Those are like the builders. The same people who know the important of a stone in a building work; the same people who know very well the usefulness of it. Those that you value and expect their love, support and encouragement are the same who have rejected you. Is it a husband who has rejected his wife? They have looked down on their potentials and abilities in life? Because you are not like other career women or probably because you are still waiting for children of your own. You feel rejected, you feel trampled and you are discouraged. You have lost you confident and strength in the midst of all these. You have become the stone which the builders have rejected.

The builders- are those you expect much from; the people whose opinion you value and respect. The people who you love and look to them for counsel and comfort. Those are the very ones who have rejected you. Can you imagine how David felt when he was left out when Samuel sought the sons of Jesse to anoint as king? He wasn’t even considered to be present, he was left out. Do you feel like that amongst your family; your presence seems not to be relevant or appreciated? Can you also imagine how Joseph felt when he was sold out to slavery? He was rejected by the builders- the people he called family. But you know what? God remembered. God does not forsake and does not reject you. He said in Psalm 27:10, ‘Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me. The Lord will never forsake or reject you; He will not toss you aside, He will not look down on you or think you are worthless.

Imagine how our Lord Jesus Christ felt when He was rejected by the people He came to save. Those that knew the prophesy, the people who have seen the miracles of God; now I’m not talking about unbelievers, I’m talking about those who profess to be called Children of God

This morning, do you feel like the stone that the builders have rejected? You feel you have no one else on your side? Maybe the stone had stayed outside too long; it’s been tossed and kicked around by everyone. You have been bruised and beaten on every side. Families and loved ones have all given up on you, asking how long? The Builders ‘your spouse, your parents, your friends, your colleagues, even your children’ have rejected you. You now feel you are not good enough.

Rejection can cause a lot of turmoil in one’s life, it can make you see things that are not even there about your life. You begin to doubt your own ability; you doubt your strength and see only the weaknesses. You begin to doubt God and his promises over your life. You doubt if you can ever become pregnant, you doubt if you can have children of your own, you doubt if you can find the right partner, you doubt if you can get that job or even promotion in the place of work. You doubt if you can pass that examination; you doubt if you can make it and reach your potentials in life.

Now don’t be discouraged. The story is not over; the stones they rejected became the chief corner stone. It became the head, the mighty, the ruler, the king, the Saviour, the prime Minister, the CEO, the president. The stone became the chief corner stone. Don’t give up on yourself, don’t believe the hateful and discouraging words they have said to you; don’t let those hurtful comments pull your down, don’t begin to live by what they have said about you. Don’t give up on yourself because your story is not finished. The stone became the Cornerstone, the stone made it, the stone became great. The stone rose up. Halleluyah.

Please, believe me this morning when I tell you God has not given up on you; God is not finished with you, God has not forgotten or rejected you. He is still working on your behalf and great wonders would be seen by all soon; the pain, the torment, the agony of rejection, but don’t let that pull you down, don’t let that discourage you; God is still in the business of making greatness out of you. Say to yourself: I am not forgotten, I am not forsaken; I am moving forward, I am going higher, I am rising up. Nothing is going to stop me. I love this slogan and have constantly spoken it into my life, ‘what God is said to do in my life, the devil can’t stop it, he can’t stand it and there is nothing he can do about it’.

Don’t let anything take your joy away; don’t let words and trials of life deprive you of your happiness. I love this song by Ron Kenoly – I still have joy. Please read the wordings, it would encourage you.

I’ve been tested
My faith has been tried
Satan has attempted to destroy my life
He’s robbed, abused, accused and stole
He’s done everything he could do
To conquer my soul

I still have joy
I still have joy
After all I’ve been through
I still have joy

Friends have left me
They’ve questioned my faith
The good I tried to do
Was thrown back in my face
The hurt and the pain brought tears to my eyes
But God has replaced a blessing
For every tear that I’ve cried

I still have joy

I still have joy
After all I’ve been through
I still have joy.

Your joy will be full in Jesus name.

I am rising up!

Have a blessed day.

– Abimbola CirclesOfLove

 

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Mom, I think I’m pregnant!

MOM, I THINK I’M PREGNANT!

Those were the words my fourteen years old daughter said to me. I froze up and stared intensely at her. It was a feeling I could not comprehend. I felt I was going to collapse right there.

“Mum….” The sound of her voice jolted me out of my thought. I walked quickly out of the room, and came back immediately. I was disorientated.

“How can it be?” I was blabbing over, and over again. “She can’t be.” I repeatedly said, ignoring the trembling girl before me. “She’s only fourteen, and she’s my daughter.” I whispered to myself. I was talking more to myself, asking questions that I couldn’t answer. This was something that shouldn’t happen to someone like me, someone like my daughter. She was a good girl, all A’s in her studies. She was a very good girl, and I just couldn’t understand what she was saying to me.

Then I flashed an angry look at my daughter, and saw her flooded in tears; not that, I was bothered by the tears, but terrified at what my daughter had become.

“How could you?” I shouted furiously at her. She jolted at the sound of my voice. I went to her, took her by the shoulders and vigorously shook her.

“How could you?” I shouted at her, ignoring the screaming, and fear in her eyes.

“Mummy, please….” she cried out in pain, but I ignored her. She wasn’t innocent as far as I’m concerned, and no amount of tears would get her out of this.

My eyes caught the pregnancy stick on her bed; seeing that made be more furious. “What on earth was she doing with that in the first place, she’s is only fourteen?”

“Mummy….” She pleaded again but I ignored her.

The voice of my husband, her father startled me.

 

What happened next is something I never want to re-visit again. We were so shocked, and mystified when Tess told us she was pregnant. I mean, she’s only fourteen, and couldn’t even imagine her kissing anyone, let alone having sex. We later discovered she’s been sexually active a year ago, and had been on contraceptive pills without my knowledge.

I was so ashamed, and angry at myself for not noticing this in my daughter; I felt I had failed as a mother. Why didn’t I notice? I just assumed my daughter knew what not to do especially when it comes to boys. I expected her to know the truth. That period was the most terrifying of our lives; our only daughter got pregnant at the age of fourteen. I was devastated. Days after this, we had to decide what to do; in fact, I had suggested abortion to my husband. Yes I did. ‘How can a mother could think of that?‘ I honestly don’t know, and could never have imagined such thought in my life but I did. I just wanted things as they were before, you know, not pregnant. I mean, where does a mother go in this situation, what am I expected to do?

My husband became both our pillar; he was strong for us as a family. Yes, he was heartbroken but he became strong for us. He was totally against abortion but we all needed a way out. The first thing he did was to move us all away from our house; he got a transfer to another city to start afresh. The shame would have been unbearable for us all but the shame moved with us. Our daughter brought shame to us. The first few months, I was so angry at myself and my daughter. I made her feel the worst; I wanted her to feel the pain she caused us, I reminded her daily of how she disappointed us, and how she threw her life away. She had confessed she wanted to tell me the first time she had sex, but had been so scared of what I would think of her.

She knew it was wrong but felt good about the whole experience. She said she wanted to feel like a grown woman, and repeatedly explored that until she found herself pregnant. She confessed the young boy responsible for the pregnancy was the same age of her, but my husband thought it wasn’t wise to confront him now. He just wanted us out first.

After five months gone, I was still broken but this time, I had to be broken in the right places. I went to my God; I cried and placed everything before him. I asked him if I were a bad mother, and if I had failed in my responsibility of bringing up my daughter in the right way. I needed answers; I needed to hear something in the midst of my tears, but I heard nothing. I mean, there was total silence in His presence.

 

The following day, I continued and cried before him, I cried, and asked Him to forgive me, most especially to forgive my daughter who had sinned against Him. I asked that he wash her sins away and clothe her once again in righteousness and yet again, there was silence. The next day, I was getting so frustrated but still went into His presence and cried more at my failure as a mother. I confessed I was ashamed of my daughter and even felt so ashamed of myself for feeling this way. I asked Him to forgive me and create a clean heart within me, a heart to love my daughter as I ought to have. I was broken in tears and just needed to hear a word from Him but nothing. He said nothing to me.

Now, the following day, I just stood right there in His presence without uttering any word. I let go my thoughts, worries and everything. I just stood right there in His presence for once without thinking or saying anything. Few minutes into this, I heard his voice saying, ‘Be still, and know that I am God’. That was it, nothing more. At first, I wanted to argue within me; what has that word got to do with all that I have said to him these past few days? I wanted more than that, but nothing, so I decided against arguing in my spirit and just stayed there. I was still before him; I surrendered to Him. I put everything on hold; my fears, worries, shame, disgrace, guilt, disappointment, everything became quiet before him. I mean, I was tired of holding onto the hurt and pain, I just had to let go. In that time, I felt his peace overwhelm me; I felt his power within me, I felt his presence and brokenness of spirit. I felt slain in his presence. I felt my spirit crying out to take away the pain, to take away the anger, the weakness, hate and the fear. I was crying out for restoration. During this time, I knew what he wanted of me, just one thing- to be her mother. A mother who would be there for her daughter no matter the hurt and pain, a mother who would love unconditionally. Just as he loves me despite my weakness and disappointment, just as he would carry me when I feel so weak and exhausted, just as he would love me- he wants me to love my daughter despite all.

I wept in His presence but my heart was at peace. After that encounter, for the first time in months, I spoke to my daughter as a mother should. I listened to her fears. She was scared and so disappointed at what she did. She wept bitterly, and asked me to forgive her. Then, I made up my mind to hold my daughter, to help her through this and back to the Lord. I spoke blessing into her life and reminded her how great and wonderful she is as a daughter. Yes, she made a mistake but I would never judge her by that. I will not look down at her or remind her of her past. She had a great future ahead of her and that she would accomplish by the help of God; nothing will stop the plan of God in her life. She is my daughter after all. The following months were not easy but I stayed with my baby. All through the delivery which was the most excruciating, and painful experience a mother could ever witness, I mean my baby bringing out another baby; crying in pain and there was absolutely nothing I could do about it. Well, she gave birth to a beautiful girl and I became a grand mother.

Ten years down the line, I am a proud mother of a daughter who achieved all her dreams despite all odds. She went back to school and also to college; gained a master degree in Business management, and going on to high places. I am a good mother and nothing can change that. I have learnt from this experience and I have been teaching mothers to have a good relationship with their daughters. Our teenage daughters need their mothers.

They need us to nurture them; a continuous nurturing and love them. Don’t just assume they know things or all is well; talk to them about their day, their friends. Don’t be afraid to talk about the ‘sex talks’ with them. Be open minded about it. Let them get more information from you rather than the cosmopolitan or so called magazines or internet. Explain to them the feelings, the love and all other things they may be experiencing. Teach them through the word of God, tell them the mistakes you made yourself whilst growing up if possible.

 

Teach them the way into the presence of God. Now, if by any chance you have been disappointed; don’t hold on to that pain. Give it to God, let him heal your heart and make you whole. That hatred does not belong there. You need to let go and be a mother to your daughters and Sons. If by any chance they have left home into the world and doing despicable things, pray them back into the presence of God; don’t give up on that child, most importantly, forgive them for the pain and hurt they caused you, for the things they had done. Love them and let God help you through. There is nothing impossible for God to do. No Child is lost if you give them back to the Lord. Let him heal your heart and heal your children.

God bless you.

© Circlesoflove 2013

 

Thank you for reading. Kindly leave your comments below. Thanks.

 

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May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble!

“May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble! May the name of the God of Jacob protect you! May he send you help from the sanctuary and give you support from Zion! May he remember all your offerings and regard with favor your burnt sacrifices! Selah

May he grant you your heart’s desire and fulfill all your plans! May we shout for joy over your salvation, and in the name of our God set up our banners! May the Lord fulfill all your petitions!

Now I know that the Lord saves his anointed; he will answer him from his holy heaven with the saving might of his right hand.

Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. They collapse and fall, but we rise and stand upright. O Lord, save the king! May he answer us when we call.” Psalm 20

The Lord will hear and answer you this day; He will make haste to save you! He will thwart every plans and agenda of the enemy over your life. He will rise and fight your battle in Jesus name. The Lord will come to help you!

Good Morning Folks!

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Lost

CHAPTER ONE

It was a wonderful day for a wedding; warm breeze from the north rustled in the surrounding, cooling friends and families as they took their seat in the Harrington’s garden. The smell of fresh cut flowers filled the air; children’s laughter was a delight to hear. The great thing about a wedding is that everyone always seem happy, well, their physical appearances showed that. The gathering of friends and families to witness a bonding of two lovers; a vow made to be joined together for the rest of their lives take a lot of gut to commit to.

Then, the chatter stopped, and all heads turned to face the far end of the walk. Down the aisle she came. The bride was a beautiful young woman. Christy wore an off-white gown, with embroidery on her bodice; her hair tied in a knot with a lace around it. She walked slowly, her face was bowed, void of any smile or expression. Her dad, Mr. Harrington held her left arm, and smiled at her as they reached the bottom step. She didn’t smile back, but nodded her head. There awaiting her was the minister, and her husband –to-be, Levi Brentwood. He was standing tall, his young face was firm. The rough, soiled farm cloth he usually wore was replaced with a clean suit, which seems a little bigger than him.

Kathy Barnes felt her stomach churned in a knot. A feeling of fear, and uncertainty filled her; she could relate to the reluctance of the bride. She was three years younger than her, and already on her way to be married. She did heard rumours that Christy had attempted to run away with her boyfriend a few days ago, but was caught in the process of leaving town. The boy had been shut out of the community for aiding this escape, and being a bad influence to her. Christy would also had received severe punishment if not because her father, Mr. Harrington was one of the top elders of the Church. Kathy thought this marriage was enough punishment for her; being forced to marry someone she’d despised and hated all her life. The bride and groom had been rivals since they were children; they would always fight at everything, and even sworn never to speak to one another again. This was no news in the community, and to their parents. But because of the fathers reputation in the Church, and the promised they made to one another several years ago that their children would be joined in marriage; they decided to bring this promise to light, regardless of how they felt about each other.

Kathy couldn’t help but noticed some of the haunting eyes of the women glaring mischievously at her. She could imagine the thought going on in their heart; they did said the reason why she wasn’t married was her lack of good manners, and her wild fantasy. They were laughing at her with their eyes, which she had seen so many times. They had told her she would end up being alone all her life. Kathy often reminded herself that she was only seventeen years of age, and no matter how they felt about her, she was still a young woman, and would never rush into the most important part of her life like that – marriage. Especially not with someone she wasn’t in love with.

It wasn’t that no man had approached her; but she had rejected about six marriage proposals in the last two years. She couldn’t find any of the farm boys or hunters attractive enough to say ‘I do’ to. One of the men, Steven was sitting to her left; he had eyed her when she walked into the ceremony few minutes ago. He was the last who had asked her hand in marriage, and went nut when she refused him. He was tall enough for her, strong and manly, but she couldn’t feel any butterflies in her stomach when he asked her. That was what Marty Coleridge wrote about in her novel,’ Love, but Sour’. Louis, the female character was a beautiful young woman who wanted nothing but love in her life. She wanted the right man who would sweep her off her feet. Everyone had told her such man didn’t exist but she believed otherwise, and decided to travel around the world to find her prince charming.

Kathy wanted that kind of adventure and experience; a man who would sweep her off her feet, the prince charming that will make her feel butterflies in her stomach. She grew up in a small town in Tennessee, United State of America;  lived in a community known as ‘The Believers’,  where every member followed a rigid code of conduct based absolutely on selected bible teachings. They isolate from other people including other Christians as far as possible because they believed the world to be a place of wickedness. The society labelled them, an exclusive and secret religious sect.

Kathy focused her attention back on the couple as they exchanged their vows, and then the minister talked about the rules and duties of a wife to her husband. He made it sounded like the women were meant to serve the men, only obey their husbands at all times. Kathy couldn’t wait to get out of the ceremony. She glanced at Victoria at the other side; she was sitting with other married women. That was popular amongst the newly wedded; they isolated from their single friends the moment they say ‘I do’. They often think themselves more superior than them. Victoria used to be Kathy’s best friend until few months back when she got married; she had not spoken a word to her. Kathy couldn’t tell if this was her own doing or her husband had instructed her never to speak to her again. Although, Kathy wasn’t too surprised since she had been the one who told her friend back then not to accept his proposal. He had been so demanding, and controlling. Kathy told her friend she deserved better, but after several weeks of avoiding him, Victoria’s parents finally got to her. She got married to him, and never looked back.

…………….

I am happy to announce that my novel is now available to download now. A compelling, and captivating story.
Lost is now available to order now. Please click here to continue.

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Let me go

Many of us have read the story of the Israelites leaving Egypt; from where God called Moses, the burning bush, the plagues and finally, crossing the red sea.

Like the Israelites, some of us have felt this way in our own lives; we feel oppressed by some kind of situation or people that have laid a heavy yoke upon us and make it difficult to get away from. You have tried all sorts of method to get free, but still find the shackles and stagnation in your life. Maybe it’s a job you feel like a slave in, maybe it’s a situation that has tied you down or some spiritual oppression that seek to destroy every part of your life.

Now, I want to do an un-usual writing today- God would be speaking directly to some of you today as you read this. I would like to take you through some truth and revelation with this story. You have cried several times for a change; you have done all you can to get free but all to no avail. Some have done all kinds of fasting and deliverance but still, nothing seem to change. I have good news for you this morning.

This is what the Lord is saying to you today, ‘I have indeed seen the misery of my people in Egypt. I have heard them crying out because of their slave drivers, and I am concerned about their suffering. Exodus 3:7.

So you think the Lord has not been listening to you, or not seen all you have been going through? You think He’s forgotten you and left you to your misery? He hasn’t folks. He not only heard your weeping, he’s also seen the misery and the pain in your heart. Now, listen to what he said. ‘….I have come down to rescue them from the hands of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land. Verse 8.

Did you hear that? He’s not coming down, He’s not thinking of coming down; He has COME DOWN TO RESCUE YOU! Am I the only one excited about this verse? Trust me, as I am typing the message, I feel like screaming and shouting for joy because the Lord is already here to rescue me. Do you believe that for yourself? He’s seen all your trouble, he’s heard all your weeping and prayers, all your misery are all right there before him. He knows them all, and He has come to rescue you. If I were you, I will start singing and dancing for joy for a minute now. Halleluiah!

Look to your left and right, who’s there with you right now? I mean now that you are reading this? Alright, I am not talking about the person sitting right beside you; I’m talking about God, and He is right by your side. He has come down to save you, He’s come to deliver and take you to the land he has promised you. He has come to set you free from every bondage, oppression and domination. He has come to give you victory. The Snare has been broken folks. Common rejoice right where you are. The Lord is there with you with a victorious hand to save you.

Ok, let’s move along. When Moses asked God who he should say sent him in verse 13. God replied, ‘I am who I am’. Now, listen, the I AM WHO I AM is speaking to you today; this name expresses God’s character as the dependable and faithful God who desires the full trust of His people. Guys, you’ve got to trust God on this one. You have got to trust him to save and deliver you. Yes, this battle might have been going on for so long and you have tried all you can, but I tell you, if only you trust and believe God this time around, He’s here to set you free.

 

You feel bound; you’ve been going in circles for so long that you have even forgotten the promises of God in your life; you have learnt to endure the suffering and turmoil of the wicked one. Your life has become a shamble, and no hope of moving forward. You’ve taken all the examinations required of you but yet, no promotion in your life. You find yourself failing each time you take the courage to try again. Does this sound familiar?

 

I really want you to listen to this. I know God is talking to someone right now. He is revealing some truth to you now. He’s speaking light and freedom into your soul and he’s showing you what to do. Now, let’s continue. God later said to Moses in verse 19, ‘But I know that the king of Egypt will not let you go unless a mighty hand compels him. Can you imagine the kind of situation we are dealing with here? God has come down to save them, yet, there is a king that stands tall and thinks he’s lord over them. He thinks he has got dominion and authority over them and would not let them go. Do you feel like this? Is there someone standing as a strongman saying you won’t get free from this situation, from this sickness, from this failure of life. Someone who is determined to stay on your case. They have taken it a duty upon themselves to see you don’t move forward in that stage of your life. They are ready to thwart everything you do? Whether they are physical, spiritual, in form of a sickness or finances, you know it. They are determined to work against you. But listen, God said there is a Mighty hand that will compel him. Halleluyah; are you still there?

 

This is what the Lord is saying to you now, ‘I am the Lord, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians. I will free you from being slaves to them, and I will redeem you with an outstretched arm and with a mighty act of judgement. Exodus 6:6.

 

No matter how tough your enemies think they are, the Lord is bringing you out of it, the Lord is setting you free right now. I will advise you to begin to charge up your faith right now. Remember, the word of God is active and alive. Hebrews 4:12. The same Word He spoke to the Israelites many years ago, He is saying to you right now. He is the same yesterday, today and forever more. His word that did wonders and set His children free years ago can do the same for you now. I don’t know what you are going through but I know the Lord is talking to you right now, Yes, you.

 

You need to believe His word today, you need to know that he’s setting you free; no matter how high or tall your enemies are the Lord will bring them down. The boss or colleague that has threatened or talked down at you, the one that said, you are going nowhere. The sickness that has held you down for so long, the spiritual bondage that has held you captive for so long, the Lord is setting you free now. For some of you, the Lord is giving you a brand new job, some are the highest promotion you never even thought of, some are restored health, and some are freedom from captivity. Let Me Go!

 

You need to decree and speak to that situation right now, I mean, now. Say it loud again, let me go! Whatever it is, call its name out loud. Let Me Go! Every bondage, every obstruction, every captivity, every slavery, every failure, every sickness, let me go now in Jesus name.

Now quickly, let me point your attention to something. I hope you are still there folks? I know this particular article is longer than usual, but trust me, you want to read this.

 

Alright back to our topic; Listen to what the Lord said in Exodus 3:21-22. ‘And I will make the Egyptians favourably disposed towards this people, so that when you leave you will not go empty handed. Every woman is to ask her neighbour and any woman living in her house for articles of silver and gold and for clothing, which you will put on your sons and daughters. And you will plunder the Egyptians.

 

Can you believe that? They are not leaving empty handed. When I read this verse, at first I was like, ‘Ah, if the Lord is saving me, I would just take to my heels and run as fast as I can away from these people. But the Lord is making them leave with wealth, riches, and plunder from the Egyptians. I hope you are speaking riches into your life right now?

 

You are not just leaving there empty handed, you are leaving with valuables. The Lord himself would cause even those that want to stand against you to favour you towards your glory. In that job, you aren’t just leaving empty handed to a greater place and appointment, you are going out as a celebrant; not as a slave, you are going out with glory, you are going out with celebration, you are going out rejoicing. in that sickness, you are going out with a renewed strength. In that bondage, you are going with all your possessions, those things the enemy has taken away from you, you are getting them back. Your valuables are leaving with you, whatever represents gold and silver are leaving with you; clothing are leaving with you. You are not going out in shame; you are not going out in dishonour. Your children are leaving the land of slavery with you, your sons and daughters will be dressed in glory. Now for those who are waiting on the Lord for the fruit of the womb, guess what? You are going out rejoicing because the Lord has blessed your womb. Are you excited about what the Lord is saying to you? Only Our Lord can do all these, only He can give you victory.

Let me point out something quickly. I noticed something wonderful in these chapters. In Exodus 3:15. God told Moses to tell the Israelites that ‘The Lord has sent him. Then, in the following verses and chapters, I noticed God emphasising to them as ‘The Lord. It got me thinking why God was using this particular name a lot to the Israelites. He said it in verse 15, verse 18, in many others verses. Then He took me to Exodus 6:2. Please you need to bear with me and follow the verses. He said there that, ‘I am the Lord. I appeared to Abraham, to Isaac and to Jacob as GOD ALMIGHTY, but by my name THE LORD. I did not make myself known to them. Then in verse 6, ‘Therefore say to the Israelites I am THE LORD, and I will bring you out from under the yoke of the Egyptians.

 

This is where I’m going; I had to take a few minutes to ask the Lord. Why did He reveal himself to Abraham as God Almighty but to Moses and the Israelites as The Lord? There must be something God was trying to tell them. Now, this is what the Lord revealed to me. Pharaoh portrayed himself as the lord over the Israelites, yes, he was the king but his yoke and authority over them was ‘I own you. I am head over you; you are my slaves and are not going anyway. I have ownership and authority over your life. I am the lord over your life. Do you understand where I’m going? The situation you are going through seems to have placed you under; more like subjected you to pain and misery, turned themselves as lord over you, the sickness has taken authority over your body, the captivity you are in now has taken dominion over you; The strongman or the boss thinks they are lord over your life.

Now, see what God is saying to them. I AM THE LORD. I am the complete and absolute owner of that life, I have the final say. I am authority; not you. Those people belong to me, I am their master, I am their Lord, I am their leader, I am their deliverer, and I am their God. The Lord is bringing them down from their throne. He has come to take authority and ownership of your life. You need to say to them now, ‘Come down and sit in the dust, ye virgin daughters of Babylon. Sit on the ground without a throne. Isaiah 47:1.

 

He is the Lord and that situation cannot contend with Him, He has come down as the Lord to rescue you today; He has come to deliver and to save you. Do you believe that? If you do, I want you to stand up and begin to decree his promises into your life, begin to walk out in freedom, the Lord has come down to rescue you, He has come to save and loose you from the bondage of darkness. He has come to take you to the promise land with milk and honey. He has come to take over. Common speak out now. Let Me Go!

 

The Lord still has great things to reveal to you so stay tuned for the next part of this message. Trust me; you don’t want to miss this.

 

Thank you for reading and God bless.

*Bible readings were taken from NIV.

 

© Circlesoflove 2013

 

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I will rise again

The bible said in Isaiah 60, ‘Arise and shine for your light is come and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you’. Today, you will arise; today, you will rise up from every shame and disappointment of life. Today, you will rise from every scorn and disgrace. Today, you will rise from every sickness or dead situation in Jesus name.

Now see, the bible didn’t just stop there; He didn’t just say arise. He said; ‘Arise and shine!’. Folks, God does a complete job; He doesn’t work half way. In the story of Lazarus; after Jesus told the dead man to come forth; he told the people there to take the dead clothing away from him. Why? Because a man who is alive can’t be walking around in dead clothing. That is not God’s will for him. After the Lord set you free, he will remove the dead clothing, He will remove the shame and stigma of the enemy away from your life.

When you are living and still have dead clothing around you, you cannot shine. Do you understand that? You cannot be living and smell of the dead; you cannot be alive and have the odour or death on you, the covering of shame all over you. Jesus knew this when he rose Lazarus from the dead; he didn’t want him just to be alive, but to shine because his light has come and the glory of the Lord has risen upon him. Folks, the will of God for you is to shine, not just live but walk in the blessing and goodness of the Lord. He doesn’t want you dry; He wants flesh on you, he wants tendons, skins and breathe on you.

The Lord wants to remove the representative and representation of the dead away from your life. God wants you to shine; He wants you to live in the fullness of his grace and power. He wants you to walk in his blessing. Now Folks, arise and shine for your light has come and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. Your light is Christ; Jesus Christ has taken away the darkness all around you, He’s taken the shame and reproach away from your life, your glory has come, your breakthrough has come, your up-liftment has come in Jesus name. Praise God!

In the book of Ezekiel; God told Ezekiel to prophesy into the bones, he looked up and tensions and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them. There is no need for a flesh, skin or bone without breath on them. Then, the Lord told him to prophesy to the four winds and call the breath into them and he did.

Now listen folks, you need the breath of God to make you whole; you need the power of God in your life to live in the fullness of God. When things are dry around you, when situations and businesses are dry, it becomes rough. You find yourself struggling day in day out. You work tirelessly without seeing any result. Imagine digging up a dry land; you become exhausted, frustrated, weak and out of breath.

Today, prophesy the breath of God into your life. Dry bones shall live again, you shall live again. You have struggled for so long; you have worked on that land for so long without any fruit. Today, prophesy to the four winds to bring the breath of God into your life. I read from a book recently and it says, ‘‘when you give an unfriendly reception to a visitor, he generally does not wish to stay. When you give an unfavourable reception to the enemy, he will not want to stay. But when they come and you make the place very comfortable, they will sit and dine with you.’ – Dr D. K Olukoya.

Don’t make your enemies comfortable; arise and take what belongs to you. Go back to the place of prayer and send those enemies out of your home. Make it HOT folks. Go back to that place of prayer, ‘the fervent and effective prayer of the righteous availeth much’. Don’t just stand there and expect things to get better. No, stand up and pray it out. Don’t let the problem comfortable, don’t allow the curse in your life, and don’t take things as they are; prophesy into your life.

God bless.

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I am not forgotten

Have you been neglected or forsaken in a place where you should feel secure and enjoy the good of the land? You have been tossed away because ‘they’ feel nothing good can come out of you? You have been cheated on something that should be rightfully yours.

The strong taking advantage of the weak. The rich taking advantage of the poor and plundering them of the little they have. They take the good of the land but leave you with crumbs and bones? Your inheritance taken away from you, leaving you with no choice but desolation? The desert is so dry; no water to quench your thirst, no food to keep body and soul together? You feel bound, enslave in a place where you should be free.

This is the word of God for you this morning. Stand on it, believe it and trust Him this morning.

Thus saith the Lord. “I will make a covenant of peace with you and rid the land of wild beast so that you may live in the desert and sleep in the forest in safety.

I will bless you and the places surrounding my Hill. I will send down showers in season; there will be showers of blessings.

The trees of the field and the ground will yield its crops; the people will be secure in their land.

They will know that I am the Lord, when I break the bars of their yoke and rescue them from the hands of those who enslaved them.

They will no longer be plundered by the nations, nor the wild animals devour them.

They will live in safety, and no one will make them afraid. I will provide for them a land renowned for its crops, and they will no longer be victims of famine in the land or bear the scorn of nations. Then they will know that I, the Lord their God, am with them and that they, the house of Israel, are my people, declares the Sovereign Lord.

You my sheep, the sheep of my pasture, are people, and I am your God, declares the Sovereign Lord.” Ezekiel 34:25-31.

Listen, all who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; who who oppose you will be as nothing and perish. The Lord will make rivers flow on your barren heights, and springs within the valleys. He will turn the desert into pool of water, and the parched ground into springs.

In righteousness you will be established; tyranny will be far from you; you will have nothing to fear.

You are not forgotten, the Lord is with you and His word is true and alive.

Have a glorious weekend.

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Confession of a Married Man

Chapter One

Deborah raced down to the hospital as fast as she could, shaking with indignation and fear. She struggled to steady her breathing and reduce the swelling emotion in her chest but all to no avail.

“Oh God! Please………” she wiped the tears obstructing her eyes to see the road ahead. “Please Lord…….., what have I done?” She pulled her car to a stop in front of St Thomas Hospital, and ran inside.

“Mr. Adebanjo please.” she called out to the nurse at the reception.

“Excuse me, who?” the nurse looked up at her.

“My husband please, I was called by one of your doctors that he was rushed here yesterday night, Please, where is he?” Deborah trembled in fear.

“It’s ok madam, I will take you right to his room.’’ The nurse stood up and led her to the ward.

She followed hastily behind, still shaking in fear.

“Please, what happened? Is he ok?” Deborah asked.

“I’m afraid I can’t tell you much but would page the doctor in charge to come see you as soon as possible.” the nurse tried to ease her, but could still see the fear written all over her.

The Nurse opened the door to Dewale’s room; her eyes widen as she saw him lying helplessly in strings of tubes all over him, she rushed to his side, holding his hands.

“Honey, can you hear me?’’ she cried. “Please honey, don’t leave me, I am so sorry….” she whispered in tears. “Can you hear me dear…..?”  Just then, the Doctor entered.

He just laid there with his eyes closed and the beeping machine making continuous sound tightened her heart in fear. Her breathing became ragged as fear whipped up in her and pushed tears on her cheeks. She covered her mouth with her trembling hands.

“Mrs. Adebanjo.” She called out.

Deborah jolted as she heard her name. “Yes, are you Dr Olamide?” She walked toward her.

“Yes, I called you.” She answered.

“Will he be ok? What happened….?” she whimpered.

“He was rushed here around 10:00pm yesterday after a collision with a drunk driver. He was badly hit on the head.” Deborah gasped in fear.

“But we were able to stop the bleeding. However, Due to the extensive damage to the head, we had to induce him into coma.” Dr Olamide explained.

“Oh my God! Deborah gasped. “Coma?” She pressed her hands against her chest as she felt tightened

“We cannot say how much damage was done until he wakes up from the coma.” Dr Olamide said

“When is that going to be?” Deborah asked in tears.

“Hopefully, very soon. We can only wait to see what happens.” Dr Olamide spoke softly; she gently touched her shoulder as a sign of sympathy. Few seconds later, she walked out of the room.

All alone again in the room, she looked at her husband and felt all strength drained out of her, she felt helpless and defeated.

“Honey, Please….., if you can hear me…..” tears ran down her face. “I am so sorry……, Please honey, forgive me, I caused all these….I put you in this state.., Please.” she sunk to her knees on the carpet square.

“Oh God… Please help me, forgive me Lord and give me back my husband, please God….., Don’t punish him for my sins, I committed the offence, I sinned against you; don’t take him away……., she was flooded in tears. “I am sorry Lord……, please……, don’t take him away from me….. I am begging you Lord, please…..” she continued to cry.

At some point, she couldn’t even understand the words coming out of her mouth as her tears overwhelmed her, she held his hands and cried out to God. She couldn’t believe how she had allowed the enemy used her to destroy her home and her relationship with her husband. Not just that, she had sin against God, and broken his commandment. She broke her faith, committed a detestable act against God.

As she knelt down there, she felt the word of God piercing through her, ‘Drink water from your own cistern, and running water from your own well. Should your fountains be dispersed abroad, Streams of water in the streets? Let them be only your own, and not for strangers with you.” Proverbs 5:15-17.

She felt an increased pounding on her chest; she had not even thought about God in all these. She knew His words and God’s stand against this act, her body was only meant for one person which is her husband but she defied it and gave it to a stranger and the evil.

She is an adultery who consciously walked into sin, just to fulfill the desires of her flesh. She is like a  broken vessel that only the Master could mend, ‘He that thinks he stands take heed lest he falls’, she knew this verse like no other and yet, she became a part of it. At this point, she had nowhere to go expect to her Maker; she cried to him to forgive her sins, to cleanse her and accept her back into his presence.

Chapter Two

It’s been almost a week that Dewale had been in a coma; Deborah refused to leave his bed side until she was pressured by the teams of doctor to at least go home to change. She felt weak and guilty to the bone; she continued to cry to God to forgive her sins, to restore her home and heal her husband. During this time, she had called her parents to explain the situation but left the part of her adulterous act. Her parents helped to take care of Temidayo, their daughter while she stayed with her husband; they visited her in the hospital and also urged her to go home to rest.

After so much pressure, she decided to go home to clean herself up and change of cloth. Getting home to an empty house was most depressing; all she wanted to do is take a shower and get back to the hospital. As soon as she finished cleaning up, she left the house to go back to Dewale.

“Mrs Adebanjo!” she heard one of  called after her. “I was about calling your house; your husband just woke up.” she was excited.

“My God!” Deborah exclaimed and ran to his room. Her heart leap for joy, she wanted to run to him and hold him close but cautioned herself when she saw his doctor attending to him, so she stood aside.

“We are so glad to have you back,” she heard his Doctor say to him. “You were in a coma for a week after the car accident you had; do you remember anything?” She flashed the pen light through his eye to access it.

“Accident?” Dewale was confused; he  touched the bandage around his hand.

“Do you remember anything?” she stopped to look at him.

“No.” He stammered.

“It’s ok,’’ Doctor Olamide smiled at him. “I’m going to ask you series of questions to determine how much damage was done, okay?” she said while Dewale just nodded.

“Can you please tell me your full name?”

“Adewale Adebanjo….” he murmured.

“When where you born?” She asked.

“10th of November, 1978.” He answered.

“Do you know what year it is?”

He stared at her, Confused. “I think…, 2005…” he said

“What!” Deborah gasped from where she was standing. “He said 2005, what does that mean?” she asked Doctor Olamide, but before the Doctor could answer, she went to stand by Dewale’s side, staring into his eyes.

“Honey,” she looked into his eyes but Dewale withdrew his hands.

She saw the confused look on his face, like he had no idea who she was.

Deborah was close to tears at this. “Do you know who I am?” she managed to ask.

“I’m sorry….” Dewale stared back at her, then looked from her to the doctor. “I …don’t know………” he stammered, puzzled.

“It’s me, Deborah, your wife…” she whimpered, searching into his eyes to see if he recognized her but she found nothing.

“Oh God!” she gasped again. “What’s happening to him?” she faced the doctor, “my husband does not recognize me,” she whispered in tears.

“Madam, please,” Doctor Olamide took her hands and led her outside. Deborah reluctantly followed her seeing how confused and stocked Dewale was himself. Getting outside in the lobby, she broke down into more tears.

“What’s happening to him?” she cried out.

“Mrs Adebanjo, you need to take things easy,” Doctor Olamide spoke gently to her. “It’s not uncommon for recovering coma patient to have memory loss.” She looked into her eyes. “When people experience physical trauma, such as a head injury in a car accident, this can have effects on their brain.” the doctor explained.

“But He does remember who he is except from 2005 till date, we met in 2008 so that means he does not remember who I am which centred into his loss memory, how can that be?” Deborah asked, mystified.

“We will have to conduct further tests to determine the extent of his memory loss. Sometimes, a trauma can cause a repressed memory loss on a patient. When an event is so traumatic, the memory has not forgotten in the traditional sense, but removed from the conscious mind, still present in the long-term memory but hidden from the patient’s knowledge.” Doctor Olamide explained. .

Fear gripped her hearing this information; she realized the event that happened at home may have caused him to forget all about her. She felt weak to the bone.

“Mrs Adebanjo.” Dr Olamide tapped her as she was lost in her thought.

“I’m sorry….” Deborah jolted.

“Is there anyone prior to 2005 you can call, someone he can trust to be with now.” she asked

“Trust! Who better to trust than me?” She looked angrily at the doctor. “I’m his wife for God’s sake.” She snapped.

“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to upset.” She spoke calmly to her. “At this stage, we have to be careful and help him recover.”

Deborah strengthened. She knew the doctor was right about one thing, she definitely couldn’t be trusted; after all, she put him in this state. She inhaled deeply. “I’m sorry.” She apologized to the doctor.

“There’s no one,” she said sadly “His parents are gone dead and he’s an only child.”

“It’s okay then; let me carry out these tests, and then we can go from there.” She gently touched her shoulders.  “Mrs Adebanjo, you need to take it easy, okay? She assured her before walking back into the room.

Deborah watched as the Doctor went back to attend to Dewale; this time, she could not bring herself to go in, she stood there watching through the window.  She felt lost in herself, Dewale was not just her husband, he was her best friend, and he is everything she has. She needed someone right now to talk to and her only companion does not even recognize her.

After standing there for a while, she decided to take a walk, just go anywhere. She got into her car and drove away; she had no destination in mind, just to drive as fast as possible. After several minutes of driving aimlessly and in her thought, she felt the car behind her had been following her for quite sometime, she took note of it and drove around for a little while and was sure it was definitely on her tail, then she recognized the car and immediately stomped on her brake which made the other car to brake harshly too. She got out of the car, went straight to the other car and opened the door to the driver side.

“Why on earth are you following me?” she shouted at Tunde. “What is all these.” she demanded.

“I’m sorry Deborah, I was just trying to get you to speak to me; I was worried after you left your house the other day in a rush. I have called your phone several time but no response; you’ve not been to work or even back home. I went by your house today again and saw you driving off so I followed you, I couldn’t catch on with you when you drove into the hospital so I waited….” Tunde panted for air as if a gun was been pointed at him. “Is everything ok?” he searched into her eyes for answers.

“So, what are you?” She challenged.  Why are you looking for me? Why are you following me? To see if your mission is completed? Isn’t it” She shouted furiously at him.

“No, no, I was just worried about you Deb…” he said in a sad tone.

“Don’t you dare call me ‘Deb’, you lost the right to call me that a long ago.” she raged at him.

“I’m sorry Deborah, I know you are still angry at me, but really, I am very sorry. I didn’t plan for things to happen this way. I can’t stop thinking about you Deborah….”

“Now, Tunde, I want you to stop right there.” She shouted. “Don’t think about me; I am not interested in you and what happened between us was a great mistake and I regretted it. I love my husband and that’s not going to change.” She faced him squarely.

“Tunde, put yourself in his shoe, how would you feel?” She asked searching his face but he was quiet. “I don’t know who you are anymore Tunde, I thought you are a man of God; a man who knew God and walked according to his principles.  What happened to the man that so preached against all these?” she asked. “I agree we sinned against God and what we did was wrong, but what I don’t understand is you.” She looked straight into his eyes. “You don’t feel remorse, you just don’t care.”

“Deborah, I am first a man before I became a Man of God, I have feelings, emotions and I loved you and still love you…….., Deborah, and I can’t find myself without you…. please…..

At that moment, Deborah realized she was making another terrible mistake standing there talking to him; she should be in the hospital now, by her husband’s side, either he remembered her or not; with that thought, she turned back without uttering any word and walked to her car.

“Deborah…, please, don’t walk away from me…” he ran after her. But she just continued to walk, got into her car and raced back to the hospital.

She was determined to work this through, in as much as she needed Dewale, she realized that Dewale also needed her, she was all that he’s got, she was his only family and she believed that is hidden somewhere in his memory and sooner, it will all come back to him.

Chapter Three

Deborah got back to the hospital and without hesitation; she walked straight to the ward. She stopped for a moment and looked through the window to his room, she said a word of prayer, and then she walked in.

Dewale tilted his head up to look at her, and then forced a smile.

“I am so sorry about the other time,” he apologized, “guessed I was still in a state of stock.” he followed her with his eyes as she came to stand by his bed.

“It’s okay; it wasn’t your fault.” she replied.

“You know, waking up from a sleep and then you realized you’ve lost six years of good memory is no good.” he chuckled.

“That sucks!” Deborah smiled.

“Yea, real bad,” he let out a soft laugh. “I must have scared the hell out of you.” he said with a look of concern on his face.

“Well….” Deborah said, unsure of what to say.

“And to say I have this beautiful woman before me who is my wife, aren’t I the luckiest of men?” he smiled at her.

“Actually, I am the luckiest of all women.” she managed a smile.

“So tell me, what I have missed?” he curiously asked.

“Well…,” Deborah smiled “You have a beautiful daughter, and she’s two years old; she’s at my Mom’s now.”

“I am so blessed.” Dewale smiled again. “At least, there is one thing I still remembered, that I am a Christian and love God; I’m sure He saved me and brought me back home, to you.” he touched the wedding ring on his left finger.

Then, he stared at her for few moments, trying to figure out her face.

“The doctor said my memory loss is as a result of the head injury,” Dewale said. “But it’s not permanent.” He added looking into her eyes. “It will come back soon, okay….” He assured her.

“It’s okay Dewale, I’m just glad to have you back,” Deborah smiled. “By the way, my name is Deborah.” She felt like the very first time they met; anxiety filled her.

“Hmm, Deborah…” Dewale said. “I love that name, Deborah, Debby….” He smiled.

“Yes, you call me Deborah.” She reached out to hold his hands, this time, Dewale returned the gesture.

“Everything will be fine dear.” Deborah looked into his eyes.

As Dewale looked back at her, he tried to remember the face, the feeling of her hands, her smell, her eyes, even her voice but they were all blur; she felt familiar but nothing was coming up to him.

Chapter Four

Dewale stayed in the hospital for two more week to heal after which his Doctor decided he was fit to go home. She advised that familiar places or things might help to jolt back his memory and she also booked him for weekly physiotherapy at the hospital. Deborah was glad to have her husband back home, even if they still behave like strangers, it was better than losing him.

Few days after getting home, Dewale went through the whole house to see if things would be familiar to him, especially when Temidayo was brought back to the house.

As he held his daughter, he felt so much love and warmth within him, love that overweight above his memory loss; he knew somewhere within him that she was his and wept quietly as he held her close. Deborah longed to explain what happened before the accident to him but she was warned by the doctors to take things slow with him and not relate past trauma events to him yet.

Days turned into weeks; Deborah tried to get Dewale to come sleep on their bed but she felt he was uncomfortable about this; sometimes, he slept for few hours and during the night, he went away downstairs to sleep on the couch. There were times she heard whispers in prayer, even as she couldn’t hear the words; she knew he was distress in his spirit. With all these going on, she felt guilty about having sexual desires for her husband; she wanted to be touched by him, she wanted to sleep in his embrace all night long, kiss him so passionately to express how much she love him, at the same time, she was unsure of how to come clean to him and felt deception about these.

There were days she wanted to ask him what he remembered as things were beginning to come back to him, but the fear of what it might be scared her.

Even with all these going on at home, she tried to keep Tunde off her back, although, she had quit her job, changed her mobile number but he kept sending her all sort of letters at home. There were times she noticed his car stalking her, at times he approached her and start begging and telling her he couldn’t live without her, other times, he just followed her. It was so bad that even when he wasn’t there, Deborah felt like she was been watched by him. She’s beginning to feel so much hatred and resentment towards him; even the sight of him was beginning to repulse her.  She stopped every confrontation with him as it was of no use. All she wanted now is her husband back to her but she knew she had to trust God. This all went on for almost two months.

One night, Dewale had offered to tuck in Temidayo to sleep, while she went to take a shower. When she finished in the bathroom, she found him standing there in the middle of the bedroom waiting for her.

“Is everything alright?” she was surprised to see.

“Yes.” He smiled and walked toward her. He took her into his arms and hugged her tightly.

They both stayed in each other arms for quite a while, then, he brought her to face him; kissed her softly, and stopped to look at her face.

Deborah was lost in all this; she was about to speak when he kissed her again, this time, so passionately that she fell under his charm; she kissed him back too and held tightly onto him, ignoring her towel which gently slipped away from her tiny body; she held on so tightly ignoring the tears bunching in her eyes.

She moved with him as he carefully led her on the bed.

“Dewale, I have to talk to you….” she said softly.

“Honey, I’m done talking…” he started to kiss her neck, finding his way up to her cheeks.

“It’s really important honey…..” she whispered.

“We can talk after this dear.” Dewale continued to explore her face with his lips.

Deborah knew what he wanted, but something in her held her back. She felt she would be deceiving and betraying his trust. She had to tell him what she did.

“Please….” She suddenly broke down in tears. “I did something….., something very terrible…. and you don’t remember.” she allowed the tears pour down her face as her lips began to tremble.

“Hon,” he stopped and looked at her with a kind face. “I don’t want you to talk about anything dear, whatever you did, I forgive you…” he gently wiped the tears from her face. “I love you so much and I know you love me too; whatever it is dear, let’s forget about it  and move on with our lives.” Dewale looked straight into her eyes, trying so much to steady the pounding in his heart. He felt he had to make this perfect; he had to get it right. He wasn’t ready to go back to the past.

“But, don’t you want to know?” she asked in tears, overwhelmed by his kinds words to her.

“I don’t want to hear it; now can I get back to kissing my wife?” He smiled and before she could reply, he started to kiss her all over again.

He placed his lips on her eyes and gently kissed it. Deborah felt the warmth that rested on her wet eyes and her heart sunk. She felt she didn’t deserve the kind of love he’s shown to her. He wasn’t even interested to know what she did or was it that he knew but didn’t care? Deborah felt a release from him, a kind of release devoid of any form of anger or resentment like he had forgiven her whatever she must have done against him. She wasn’t too sure but right now, right here, she was grateful for his love.

Then,  She turned her face up to his,  her half-felt protest became a moan of surrender as he drove his mouth down on hers with a hungry kiss which splintered her. She felt love like never before.  As he touched her, she moved with him and enjoyed every step of it. This is what love making should be, a feeling of total love and surrender to your partner, not of condemnation, deceit or betrayal.

Unknown to Deborah, Dewale had recovered completely from his loss memory but thought that revisiting the past would not make things better between them; rather, he decided to deal with things in his own way. During those days of recovering, he had spent several time praying and pondering over things. He prayed for the heart of forgiveness and restoration. He knew Deborah was sorry for her act and he needed something stronger to let go of the pain and hurt.

At first, he felt the hurt and pain in his heart, he felt she had betrayed his trust and could never forgive her. But the more he thought about this, the farer he was away from the presence of God. He couldn’t stand before God to pray, he couldn’t even think or move on with his life. Then, one day, he wept and cried to God, he told him he was weak to forgive her, he was hurt beyond words, and he needed God to help him, to heal and restore him back. He knew he needed to forgive her, and only the grace of God can help him through that.

That day, he made a choice to forgive her; he made a choice to let go. After he completely surrendered to God, he felt peace beyond all comprehension within and knew God was working in him.

Chapter Five

Tunde jolted at the sound of the doorbell. Opening the door, he found an unfamiliar face standing before him.

“Hello,” He greeted. “Can I help you?” He stared at the stranger.

“Yes you can.” Dewale brushed passed him and walked into the house. “I think its best we come inside to talk.”

Tunde was taken aback at the outburst of his guest.

“My name is Dewale; I think you know my wife, Deborah?” His face was taut.

Tunde shuddered when he realized who he was.

“You actually haven’t met me before and yet, you had the gut to come into my home and defy my wife.” His head dropped forward in exasperation. “Even still, you are still trying to find your way back.” He furiously looked at him.

Tunde was bewildered; he wanted to say something but his throat became dry as shamed caused his lips to tremble.

“I want you to listen and listen carefully.” His wide eyes rested on him. “My wife is my Jewel. I love her and would do anything to stay that way. Henceforth, I want you to stay far away from her; you don’t dare to call her, see her or even think about her.” He felt like dropping some few bunches into his skull so he can properly understand what he meant, but took all the strength in him to restrain himself.

He stared long at him for several seconds while Tunde bowed his head in shame.

Then, Dewale reluctantly took a step backward, walked toward the couch and sat down. “You know, when I first met my wife, before we actually started dating….” Dewale rested his back on the couch.

“All she did was talk about you, mostly about how she admired your commitment to God, how you served him and upheld your faith,” He rolled the wedding ring on his finger. “she said you never touched her or even tried to; You know she told me specifically, ‘I respect and love him because he never took advantage of me even when I was weak’, she called you a man after God’s own heart.” He chuckled.

“I knew she loved you and it was hard for her then, but she felt God brought you into her life to teach her some value, to grow and learn. She said she knew and understood God through every teaching you ever taught her.” He looked up for a moment and saw Tunde drenched in tears. He was trembling and Dewale knew his legs wouldn’t hold him much longer.

“Man, you raised such a high standard for me to meet up to. I mean, I wasn’t perfect or a man of God, I was just growing but I loved her so much that I would do anything, anything…” he emphasized. “To make her happy.” Dewale ran his hands over his face.

“I told her to go back to you; I made her realized that she was not bound to marry me because our parents insisted it or pressure from anyone. I wanted her to make her choice and be happy.” He inhaled deeply as he felt his heart sunk; for a moment a part of him felt he must have caused all these.

Tunde felt weak all over so he walked towards the next couch and quietly sat down.

“She went away and a week later, she came back to me. She said she was convinced that I was the will of God for her. She said she loved me.” Dewale looked widely at him. “She chose me.”

“You know, I never knew you then but I admired your commitment and all the things she spoke about you,” he tilted his head forward. “But now, I don’t know what happened to you but one thing I know is this, you are lost.” He said in a firm tone. “For you to come into another man’s home, eat his fruit and demand to take it away, then I am most certain that you are on a path to hell.” Dewale looked straight into his eyes.

Then, he became silent, intensely staring at him to what seems like forever. In as much as he felt some hatred towards him, he knew what the Lord had sent him here to do, to deliver a message; although it had been against his own wish, but who is he to question God. He inhaled deeply and silently asked the Lord to help him.

During his recovery, after his full memory had come back, he was so disappointed and angry at his wife, those nights he spent downstairs praying and pondering over things. He had asked God to help him get over all these. He so much loved his wife but he couldn’t get pass her betrayal and infidelity. He was shocked and surprised when the Lord had asked him specifically to go over to Tunde’s place to bring him back home to Him. He was stunned at this request, he had out rightly told the Lord that he couldn’t commit to that request; he wasn’t the best person to carry out that mission. Tunde had sinned against him too; he had defied his home, his wife. But days after this, Dewale couldn’t resist the word of God; he realized that he had to open his heart to the Lord to heal him too, he needed to let go and forgive, he spent hours crying and asking the Lord to help him.

“I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your deeds complete in the sight of God. Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; obey it, and repent”. Dewale quoted.

“Revelation 3.” Tunde whispered.

“I see, you still know your bible.” Dewale said.

“You need to move on…” Dewale spoke softly, “You need to let go, and let God back into your life.” At this time, he saw Tunde swelled up in tears. He realized how much he had fallen, he thought it was Deborah he needed but in the true sense, he needed his Lord and Saviour; he knew he had gone far away from his Maker. He tried to destroy another man’s home.

“The Lord asked me to tell you to return back to your first love.”

Tunde gently lifted up his head to look at him. He was surprised to hear what he said.

“I don’t know how and where you fell so low but God asked me to tell you that He is waiting for you to come back home, back into His presence. He said He would accept you back, cleanse you, wash and restore you back. He said he has not found all your works completed and…” Dewale rose up from the couch. “He loves you.”

Tunde suddenly broke down into more tears; he couldn’t believe God would still want him after all he did. His sins and disappointment to the kingdom of God; he felt this was too much and he didn’t deserve the kind of love God was giving to him.He sunk to his knees and wept bitterly.

Dewale felt pity instead of the anger he had walked in with; He felt the power of God piercing through the lost soul before him. He knew God was ready to work on him, if he truly surrender all to him. “You were a man with great vision; a purpose but you sold out to the devil, go home man!” Dewale turned and began walking to the door.

Tunde, who was swelled up in tears looked up at his guest leaving.

“I am so….very sorry….” Tunde spoke out in tears, “I am sorry, please, forgive me…”

Dewale looked back at him, nodded and walked out. He felt the tears threatening to pour down his own face.

He hurried into his car and there allowed the tears pour down his face. This time around, the tears weren’t of bitterness or pain, it was of restoration. He felt the presence of God all around him and knew it could only be God who can make the most bitter situation and turn it into healing.  The last time he spent in the presence of God, asking him to help him forgive and restore his marriage, he had thought the Lord was finished with him as he felt his presence and healing that day, but right now, right here, he realized that God was still working in him. He was taking every bitterness and hatred he thought he had let go of, he was giving him a clean and a new heart. A Heart like God, the kind he gave to Jesus to forgive our sins even after we nailed him to the cross. A heart that forgives even when we were still sinners. He continued to weep right there in his car, and felt the Holy spirit remolding and teaching him into the truth of the Lord Jesus Christ. He knew what he had to do when he gets back home, and even the things to continue doing. He has to be a priest in his home, to teach and nurture not just his wife but his family as a whole.

Sincere forgiveness isn’t coloured with expectations that the other person apologize or change. One shouldn’t worry whether or not they finally understand you. Love them and release them. Life f