PENULTIMATE weekend, my nephew, 19-year old son of my younger sister, suddenly passed on. It was a rude re-awakening to the ephemerality of our existence and a reinforcement of the reality that there is no attendance register anywhere with seriality of departure according to age. Juwon, by all referential assumptions, was a son to me. The mum and I are of the same parentage. His mum’s deeply sorrowful communication of the tragedy to me broke glands, with a rivulet drowned in my own affected comfort. He just got admitted to Uni. He should have been in, long before now, but things just kept getting dramatic, despite his brilliance. Even this time, it was by a stroke things worked out. I will spare the institution today and the dirty deals on-going at the admission office. If EFCC could start stinging institutions during admission seasons, many faces considered personable and preserved from the advertised rot everywhere, would come up, with painful contours. I digress.
So Juwon died and we are all still bruised. In the past days, I would call his mother up and would not have words beyond “It is well.” The mother-child bond is a divine mystery, starting with the umbilical cord; connected by the Unseen and preservable only in the memory.
About a week before, a first-timer mum, very close to the family, lost it on the Caesarian Section spot in Abuja. But the twins lived. In Luke 8:17, Jesus said there is nothing hidden that would not be revealed. Maybe, we won’t have all the answers here on the earth, but if we would draw nearer to Him, He promised to reveal deep and secret things to us. We have received such deep and secret things concerning Juwon and we are saying, Father, thank you for bringing him our way and for receiving him to Yourself by Your mercies.
The race of life can be guided into four major lanes and when breasting the tape, everyone would fall into one category or the other. The first consists of those who started well and ending well; second, those who didn’t start and end well; third, those who didn’t start well but end well and finally, those who started well but not ending well.
Our existence is now almost purely determined by materialism, which, of course, is also consistently depriving humanity of meaningfulness. Last Sunday, I watched with total bemusement the commotion to shake Femi Gbajabiamila, the nation’s number four, when he joined others like the wives of Governor Sanwoolu and Deputy Governor Hamzat, to partake of the thanksgiving service in our local RCCG parish in Magodo, at the request of a fellow worshipper and returnee-Rep, Rotimi Agunsoye. The service brimmed over, with the Overflow (extra sitting arrangement outside of the main auditorium) itself, overflowing. Without doubt, the extra worshippers came to see the “big” men Agunsoye invited, not the Bigger-than-the-biggest God, who is in control of the breath in the nostrils of the big men who men-worshippers grovel to touch their billowing agbadas’ hem, and could withdraw the air, anytime He so desires.
Even in the House of God, men’s attention was on fellow mortals, regardless that the woman-preacher gave a pounding message. I guess in His mercy, God simply delayed the Apocalypse, because of how materialism has, from generation to generation, dazzled man, far away, from his Creator. When one considers chilling accounts like the Osun ritual killings in Boripe Local Government Area, where men for the sake of material comfort, tied fellow men to stakes like Ramadan rams, awaiting the knives, should Divine sickle come to harvest now, nearly the entire humanity would come to waste. The two serial murderers in the Osun saga are essentially, errand-boys to some “daddies,” using the harvested human parts, including the foetus, from the Alfa’s murdered wife! The Nigeria Police may never reveal the identities of Alfa’s “customers” who are without doubts, the baba rere, baba ke fellas in our midst, but the Word is an eternal truth; there is nothing hidden that would not be revealed.
The social media today is an abattoir for the faith, particularly the Christian faith. Prayer time is tagged a waste and fingers are quickly pointed at Godless countries with better economy and standard of living. Expression of faith is now mocked as phantasmagoria, the Godful derided as the gullible. But is anyone querying the determination of an average Nigerian to succeed and not crookedly, all the time? When your efforts produce little, is it not wisdom to seek help, from the One who can help? If a corporate curse is holding the nation down, will understanding not drive you to the One who can lift the siege, at least, at your own end? And for Godless but seemingly-prospering nations, parts of Europe and Asia are the common denominator, is life just all about bread on the table? Can these less-of-God and more-of-rest preachers see the danger the reprobates leading these nations, pose to humanity? In the name of liberalism, men, in the opulence produced by Grace, are now trying to make God in their own image, pushing the frontiers of everything God disavows. Openly-gay prime ministers are emerging in strategic nations. Atheists are front-runners in strategic elections. Among the front-row Democrats seeking to sack Trump is an openly-gay candidate. Imagine a gay as American president. Yes, our backyard can do with a lot of sponging but God in His mercy, has not totally given us to corporate reprobate mind. In years to come, we would come to appreciate the tears being sown in prayer now, judging by what would be the lot of the Godless elsewhere. A dry morsel…