“Something is wrong with me. Why am I not seeing anything? why am I not hungry? Father! Baptize me with hunger!” Introverted Timothy shouted at the top of his voice.
Almost immediately, I felt one of his legs hit my bended knees. I opened my eyes and found him flat on the floor, groaning, his fingers widely apart shivering like some electric shocks were passing through them.
“Oh Jesus…Jesus...we want to burn. We want to burn for you.” I whispered, after taking a good look at everybody’s posture.
“Thank you Father, thank you Lord. I will stay flammable. I will keep the fire. I will Lord. By your grace.” Sharon said and gradually came to silence.
It was 8:00PM already. Three hours extra gone. The original plan was a 4:00PM to 5:00PM intercession for the church. But clearly, God had His plans.
“Before we say the grace” Sharon said after we had prayed the closing prayers.
“Jesus said we should stay flammable. He said He showed us these things not because we deserved it but because He wanted us to walk in these realities.”
Then she kept quiet. Everyone tried to find her face in the midst of the darkness.
“Are you crying?” Mathew asked.
“Yes I am… Maragadosh phatalembrosh skintadanraleto
I hope you will stay flammable by staying away from sin. I hope many things. Many…many…many have disappointed me. I hope you won’t be numbered among them. Lebrastophatashkalabrunto…” She ended.
“Can we just ask God for grace this moment?” I said.
“Go ahead and pray. Tell God that by His grace you will hate sin. Tell Him that you will stay flammable. Tell Him that you will not love the fire above Him. Go ahead and talk to the Father.”
By 8:15PM, we were done. No one seemed to be bothered about what our parents reactions might be as we sang joyfully, walking down the street.
Rachel was the first to branch, leaving me with the others. Mathew also branched. My house was the farthest. So I soon remained alone and only then did it dawn on me what might be awaiting me at home.
“Paa…paa…paa” it was three resounding slaps, delivered on my left cheek one after the other. This happened after I explained to mum that I went for a prayer meeting. I shouldn’t have mentioned that the prayer was organized by sister Lydia. Maybe I would have escaped the slaps.
“I’m sorry mum.” I mumbled, rubbing my cheek to relieve the pains.
“Get into the house. Disobedient child. How many times have I told you to stay away from Lydia? Didn’t I tell you what Mrs. Arowolo told me about that girl three weeks ago. Ehn? You chose to disobey shebi? When I finish redesigning your life with slaps, you will understand better…” the nagging started.
“There’s always a price to pay for following God. When you find that your journey through life is too rosy, you should ask yourself ‘am I still following God?'”
That was dad during the night devotion. He was not at home when I returned so I wandered if God was trying to reach me through him.
Sincerely, I had given up on Sister Lydia. “I would just avoid her and continue to love God in my closet.” I had concluded in my mind.
“Your trials are God’s ways of making you purer and flammable…”
My eyes widened at the sound of the word ‘flammable’. Now I was sure it was God speaking to me. I went to bed with an unexplainable joy. The joy that Jesus knew and saw mum slapped me and had spoken through dad to heal my wounds.
…to be continued…
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
As it is written, for Your sake, we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” – Romans 8:35,36.
Fruitful E. John