THE QUIRK OF FATE
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I was the evangelism coordinator of my Campus fellowship when I was at the University of Lagos and I knew quite alright what a soul- a single one meant unto the Lord.
But not now!
Not when my life had come to a standstill and it looked as if my world had come crashing.
By now, all my friends and families that had prepared for the ceremony tomorrow would have started wondering what happened when my parents call to inform them about the cancellation.
My colleagues from Australia too would have to cancel their flights as there was no need travelling from Europe to Africa again!
‘Here this non-entity wants to rope my legs with God! God! God!’
‘And I say No! No! No!’
I was as weak and light as a paper!
If a two year old baby pushed me, I would fall!
My head rose as I thought about what I should do to my father.
I had heard some rumours that he had been involved in a lot of scam promising me to different families as bride as long as they could provide this or that. But never could I imagine that it was going to be as bad as this.
I cant live in this world anymore
I cant love or trust anymore so what more can I do but to die!
“Princess’’ Niel called me calmly. I looked into his face and hissed.
“See Niel, to be factual, there is hell and there is heaven” I started with my mouth twisted to the side. He listened with rapt attention, his head bowed.
“I have preached to many people about the fact that they should not miss heaven and all that because heaven is described as beautiful with endless fellowship with our creator, lord and master” I explained on and he nodded in comprehension.
My silent, cool voice became violent and bass when of a sudden I caught his two shoulders with indescribable strength and shook him vehemently.
“But we can’t go there!” I screamed into his ears. He looked very shaken but I didn’t care.
“Princess…” he was saying when I growled and made a dangerous look.
“We can’t go there! We are going to hell together because with this knife here, I will kill you, then before life goes out of you, you will kill…” I was saying when of a sudden there was a gentle breeze in the pen.
I loosened my grasp on him and we looked at each other, greatly surprised. The window was locked and the door was too. How on earth did breeze come in that way?
Niel fell to the ground and I looked at him with great fear. I started shaking him vigorously.
“This is becoming serious for me o.” I cried out, beating my laps in anguish
Who on earth who believe that I wasn’t the one that killed this guy if he died.
He has to wake up! I thought aloud as I started shaking him vigorously
“Wake up Niel! I hope this guy doesn’t have an incurable disease o. How would an agile guy like this just fall down and die?” I cried out and laid on the floor beside him. I was so weak as I cried “Why Lord!” repeatedly
“Balaam!” I heard a voice call out calmly and confidently. I looked around and I saw nothing. Even Briton was already fast asleep!
Everything was just strange.
Whose voice was that?
“Is anyone there?” I asked, sitting up, very frightened
“Balaam! Verily verily I say unto you. You’re a Balaam and you are Balaam” the voice went on to say and I was baffled. Who was talking to me?
Where was the person?
I started wheezing! That was another strange thing because I had never had asthma.
“My God! I will run mad o! What is happening to me? Why are strange occurrences coming my way like this?” I wheezed on and on until I fell to the ground and passed out.
The stadium was almost empty but for a horse, a man with a blindfold on his face and another man in white who were in the middle of the stadium as if in a competition.
“Sir, is this a competition? Where are the other contestants?” I asked the man in white.
“Princess, this is life. It is no competition. This man is the only one running the race on this horse” he said beautifully and it was not clear to me
“So, what is the blindfold on his face for?” I asked and the man in white smiled
“That is how everyone is as a Christian. You are blind. You do not know where to go and what goes on around you” he explained on and I was confused the more.
“So, how is the man going to know where he is going to and how to get there?” I asked again and the man in white smiled.
“That is why I am here. As long as he follows, he won’t miss the way. This man is about to start going now. Let’s go together with him” he said and I started walking with the man in white while the horse and its rider followed from behind.
As we approached a very large signpost with the inscription ‘The Will of God’, the horse made a very loud whine and I looked behind me.
The blindfold on the face of the man was no more there. The horse had turned to the left and the man was smiling happily as he looked at something afar off.
I moved towards his side to check what was making him smile. It was a glittering entrance with the signpost ‘The Beautiful Will of God”
As he pulled the bridle of the horse, the horse raced off in the direction of the glittering signpost and I looked at the man in white who had worn a sad face
“He is gone!” I said and he shook his head
“It is a deception. There is nothing like the beautiful will of God. His will is his will. It is going to be beautiful in its own way!” he said painfully and looked sad.
“His eyes are opened! Your eyes can’t be opened and you will say you would be led. There are lots of distractions out there. Come with me” the man said again and the gate of the ‘Will of God’ opened wide. I saw a very large, expanse of Greenland. I smiled happily as it was very colorful with fruits of many kinds.
“This was for him” the man in white said and I opened my mouth wide
“Was?” I asked and he shook his head
“But for his many savings, he would have missed this beautiful Greenland. Now, I have to go after him if perhaps he notices my presence, he would come back” he said in a caring tone.
As I walked with him down the road the man had passed, I started ruminating over everything the man had just told me.
“But sir, savings?” I asked and he smiled
“You will get to understand later” he said and we went on.
The man in white reached for his pocket and brought out a remote control which he pressed and we heard the loud whining of the horse. I looked at his face inquisitively
“I just stopped the horse abruptly” he said and we watched from afar as the man beat the horse to move.
The horse was almost entering the glittering entrance when it was halted and I could see the anxiety on the man’s face as he shouted ‘Move!’ to no avail.
“Help him” I told the man in white and he looked at me and smiled
“His father employed me to be his professional guide. He should call me if he needs me” He said and I started screaming
“Your guide is here. Call him” I shouted. He looked at me and hissed
“Leave me! Can you live in that old castle he was leading me to? Leave me! Move!” he beat the horse the more and the man in white shook his head. He pressed a remote control and the glittering gate opened.
I was so shocked as I saw a very fallow ground with thorns and thistles and different crawling insects and cobwebs. I held my chest and looked at the man on the horse. He was carried away with beating the horse that he didn’t see the gate opened.
“The entrance is fine but its dirty inside. Don’t go!” I screamed and he was obviously furious. I ran towards him and started pulling at him anxiously to get down the horse.
“’Please, don’t pull me. Leave me and let me go into this place. This place appeals to me. Please” he cried and I looked into his adamant face. I dragged him off the horse angrily.
“That place is not good!” I said firmly.
In an attempt to drag him off the horse, I forgot his legs were held together in a slide and thereby, I broke his leg. He screamed and screamed in pain but I didn’t want him to go into the entrance. It was horrible!
“You have killed me!” he cried as he dug his nails into my hands in pain. I felt very bad but I kept on dragging him on the shrubs till we got to the man in white
“I am sorry. Its for your own good” I said to him and he screamed the more as I dragged him with the man in white in front of us.
As his screams died away gradually due to loss of his strength, we got to the entrance of the ‘Will of God’ gate.
I pulled him inside and an ambulance was at the gate ready to take him away.
“Thank you ma. He would be okay” the nurses said and they turned away with the gate closing behind them. I looked into the man in white’s face, smiling very gladly. I was greatly satisfied but the look on his face was sad.
“What is the matter?” I asked and he shook his head
“How do you feel after the struggle?” he asked and I smiled again
“I feel very great!” I exclaimed and he shook his head again
“Princess” he called out
“Princess” he called out again
I was losing my patience!
“Yes sir!” I responded again
“But that was you!” he said and I checked myself through
“Me?” I asked to be sure
“Yes you! Following the Holy Spirit’s leading was your doing all along because he was the one employed by the Father to serve as your guide. You have many guides- your mother, your friends, your pastors, your counselors, they are all good but he is the only professional guide” he continued and I listened with rapt attention.
I had started perspiring.
“The Holy spirit started leading you- the university to go, the course to study, the way to go, the right friends to choose and everything but it got to the marital aspect of your life. You removed your blindfold, saw a beautiful face, nice structure, and like Prophet Samuel, you said ‘Definitely, this is him!’” he paused and walked to a fence, leaning on it, his face raised to heaven
I pursed my lips as the words sunk into my being.
“The love race started and you fell really in love. You left prayers which regularly were your food yet the Holy Spirit followed you everywhere but you were too busy to notice his presence. All you did was complaining that God had left you when he was always by you daily!”
“My father!”I exclaimed as it dawned on me that I had wronged God! I fell on my knees, with my hands supporting my shivering chin.
“You asked me about savings the other time. Your savings as a Christian is prayer. Let us come boldly to the throne of mercy. The end of that verse says ‘that we may find grace in time of need’. Let us bank in prayers that when we can’t probably pray again, when our hearts are straying, we would find grace to help us up. That is the savings. You had few coins of prayers but the value your mother had made into that savings was more than anything. Always praying for you was her responsibility!” he explained on and I sat on the floor, trying to process everything.
So, the rape?
“Yes, the rape was God’s will!” he said and I looked up at him, shocked!
“Like seriously?” I asked to be sure I heard correctly.
“Few weeks to your wedding, your mother’s prayer point changed its course from ‘let the wedding be a success’ to ‘your will alone shall be done. Our will shall not be done!’ that is a wonderful prayer. None of me but all of you! That was how the heavens started working on your behalf not to let your will be done.” He said on and I looked lost.
What did he say?
“First of all, in answer to your mother’s prayers, the guy told you he was no longer interested in you. But you cried and begged him to continue. Heaven was sad” he said and I shook my head unbelievably
“Next, you caught him with a lady in bed and you were angry, ready to break it off. Yet, he still cajoled you saying he was preserving you untouched till your wedding night. You knelt down together to ask for forgiveness. For what?” he almost shouted.
My heart started pounding and my sight became bright. It was as if a blind had been removed from my sight.
“What is the difference between yourself and the horse rider now?” he asked and I shook my head.
There was obviously no difference whatsoever.
“Niel came, smashed your pride on the floor just as you broke the rider’s leg and together, through the power of the prayers of your mother and others, we shall drag you into His perfect will. You should count yourself lucky! Except you still want that beautiful entrance will an ugly inside” the man in white smiled faintly and I looked perturbed.
“Now, would you walk with me to the entrance of ‘The Will of God’?”he asked and I nodded.
I was totally ready!
I was confused and perturbed at the whole thing but I was ready.
Ready to see how green the whole inside was.
“I am ready” I said as I stood up.
Quietly and gently, we approached the gate and it opened.
I gasped severally as I surveyed the environs. There was a perfect green land with different crawling plants of different shapes and colors and it looked very nice to behold but it looked unkempt!
“Sir, why is everything like this? It’s too bushy!” I said and he nodded.
“The watchman is not around.” He said and I opened my mouth in suspension
“Where is he?” I asked and the man in white turned around and looked straight. I turned around too and saw a cross not too far away.
“You have crucified him” he said and I looked at him sharply
“Me?” I asked and the man in white nodded. I sighed deeply
What exactly is this old man saying for Righteousness’ sake?
As we approached the cross, the face of the person on it was covered with a white cloth. I shuddered!
I had nailed Christ to the cross again!
“Climb that stool and open the covering on his face.” The man in white said as he pointed to a very tall ladder-like stool.
I moved close to the stool, sighed for the umpteen time , took my steps as I climbed and eventually I stood tall on it.
I looked down at the man in white who smiled largely and then made to open the covering with my heart in my mouth.
“Jesus!” I repeated as I loosened the covering and removed it with a slow motion.
“What! Olorun maje ooooooo!” I exclaimed loudly as I saw, tied to the cross, Niel!
He looked so good, though with perspiration on his face. And his teeth as he smiled at me were wonderful!
I reject it for my dog!
This rapist! This drunk! This evil man!
“Whatever God has called clean, do not call unclean!” the man in white said to me. I shook my head vigorously.
”I don’t have the grace. I can’t do it” I said firmly, my heart wailing in me. The man in white smiled
“Help him down from that cross of condemnation on which you have tied him and let him be free” he said and I shook my head.
“No! Lailai! I can’t do it. I can’t touch him. He is filthy!” I continued. Then, I missed my steps on the narrow stool and I tumbled in the air as I descended. I screamed
“I am falling! Please somebody help!”
I saw a lightning, I heard the thunder, I saw a great brightness, then I fell into the waiting arms of the man in white I supposed.
… and my heart stopped!!
Wetin be God’s will in this case?
I will rather kill myself than commit suicide!
… And I closed my eyes in death!
Get ready for the last episode! – The Grand finale!