Is this it God? Is this how it ends?
The pain was unbearable. It wasn’t the physical pain but emotional. She thought of her parents. They were taking it so much harder than she had thought they would. Despite having spoken about it on different occasions and mentally prepared themselves for the inevitable event . . . It didn’t ease the pain. It didn’t make it easier for either them. But then why had she expected it to be any easier on them?
She closed her eyes. God, this is so hard. How do they get through this? Please don’t let their faith waver. Don’t let them lose hope in You. Don’t let them give up.
She opened her eyes and her mind drifted to Daniel. He had rushed to see her at the hospital a few days back at her request. Her mother didn’t want any outsiders around them at such a moment but Mitchell had pleaded and insisted he had to know. She didn’t know why God had brought Daniel into her life at the latter stages but it wasn’t over yet. He was close to tears when he saw her and how frail she had become. She couldn’t eat much. She got tired and fell in and out of consciousness occasionally but they were able to talk a little.
She smiled as she thought of the new man Daniel had become. He had the light in his eyes again! Despite the pain of seeing her on the hospital bed, there was a joy in him that couldn’t be denied. He was willing, more than willing, to put his life in order. They spoke about his plans for the immediate future and his fears.
“Sometimes I wonder if I would fall back again into my old ways.”
“Don’t think that way. That’s just the devil trying to get you scared and doubt how much God can do for you. He wants you to feel that it’s by your own strength to live holy. Any-time you feel like you are close to losing it just go to God’s throne of grace and ask for grace. Don’t go fearfully or cowardly . . . Go boldly knowing fully well He wants to give it to you.”
Mitchell felt it a privilege to be used by God to bring about such a change. She could look at her life and choose to be angry at God for short-changing her and not letting her live a full life; just like her parents felt. To fall in love. To pray for rapture not to occur yet so she could get married and have sex. To have children. . . To see her children walk down the aisle and start their own journey. But she knew without a doubt that she did live life to the fullest irrespective of those pluses. ‘Cause that was what they were.
Mitchell felt the abundant life Jesus came to give didn’t just have to mean having all the riches in the world or having a perfect marriage and all you wanted in life. It first had to do with being right with God. Living a life that God was involved in ‘cause that was the surest way to live a full life. Just like Paul who went about the gospel without a wife and won a lot of souls for God. Like Jesus who left His riches to come and do His Father’s work. So she did enjoy her life and she hoped others would.
Mitchell looked up at the white ceiling.
“God, I’m ready for my crown and mansion.” Even When It Hurts by Hillsong United played in her head.
She smiled and closed her eyes as tears trailed down her to her cheeks.
The alarm on her phone chose that moment to ring and she reached out to her bedside table and turned it off. It was freezing that morning and she pulled the covers closer to her and snuggled close to her pillow. She didn’t want to get up that morning even though she knew if she stayed back for another five minutes she would be late for work. Memories of her conversation with her father came to mind and the pain of that day before came back. The pain of how everyone was suddenly at their best and moving on. She didn’t want those thoughts to ruin her day.
Efe tossed the covers off her and grudgingly got up. She thought of Amanze and smiled.
There was a song that Amanze had sent to her yesterday. It was a love song by Ed Sheeran and she loved it. She had played it over and over again the night before and set it as her ring-tone for Amanze.
The lyrics of the song made her imagine she and Amanze doing life together. It spoke about loving the woman till they were both old. Her father had asked her if she knew what love was and she knew she did. She made the right decision in letting Daniel go.
But what if things don’t go well with Amanze? Would I regret my decision?
She rebutted the thought. She didn’t want to think about such a thing and get herself worked up. She had made her decision and she would stick to it. Efe noticed Pamela was still sleeping and she thought to have her bath before waking her up. She knew first-hand how pregnancy could wear one out. Efe remembered the days she had to read for a test and fight the sleep. She had gone through a lot.
“Sleepy sleepy. Wake up.” Efe called out to Pamela when she done having her bath. Pamela didn’t budge.
“Pamela wake up o! We would be late for work. It’s already 6:30.”
Her room-mate groaned. “Oooh, can’t I just sleep some more?”
“Sorry dear. I wish you could but I didn’t wake you up earlier so you could rest some more.”
Pamela groaned and threw her covers off her. “Can’t another weekend come sharp- sharp?”
Efe chuckled. “We wish. Don’t worry you would soon be done with NYSC and you can rest a little.”
Pamela snorted as she got off the bed.
“Rest ke? How would I rest when I know there’s something growing in my stomach and I need to generate funds to take care of the both of us. Not all of us have a rich boyfriend like you.”
Efe ignored her last statement, thinking it was probably the whole pregnancy thing and mood-swing that had her say what she said. “Thought you were putting some money aside?”
“It would only last for a few months, then after that what next? I have to put on my independent pants and do what I have to do. At least I don’t need to send money home again since my father has disowned me. Anyhow, let me quickly have my bath and we can get going to work. Let’s not have any depressing conversation this morning to ruin the day.”
My thoughts exactly! “Alright.”
As Pamela went about getting ready Efe felt sorry for her. She had still had her father’s support even though she was pregnant and Daniel and his parents had also helped out. So she hadn’t been completely alone. But Pamela was facing a different case. The father of the baby was not interested and her parents had abandoned her to fend for herself. Efe silently thanked God for how He had been with her despite those hard times.
She believed things would work out well for Pamela despite how hard it was now. If God could give her a man who would eventually love her . . . Then He could do the same for Pamela.
“Are you out of your mind?!”
“No.” Adesewa said calmly.
Kobina paced her office for the third time that morning; trying his best to restrain his anger. “It actually seems you have lost your damn mind! What do you mean you want to step out of the company? Don’t you know how much I have invested in this business? You think this is child’s play and you can just call it quits and go home whenever you feel like?” He stopped pacing and raised a hand to his face in an attempt to calm down. “Wait, what made you come to this conclusion all of a sudden? The business is going on well. We’re getting more clients. So what is the problem?”
How could she explain it to him?
“I know you’re worried about your investment but I assure you, all is not lost. Buy my own share of the company and have sole ownership.”
His eyes blazed in anger. “And what do I do? Do I know much about accountancy and all that nonsense to manage such a company?”
Adesewa opened one of the files in-front of her. “I have a list of some of the most proficient workers here and I’m sure they would do an awesome job with the clients. I have trained them well enough that their work can be trusted to the fullest. From these you could pick out someone to manage the business, of which I have a few candidates you could look into for that position.”
He eyed her. “I see you have planned this out very well. Please tell me, what’s in it for you? What are you running away from? Why the sudden decision?”
“I’m not running away from anyone.”
He didn’t believe her and his sceptical look said so.
“Look, I know you doubt me but I’m just pulling out of the whole accountancy thing. I think it’s time I do something that I feel called to do. You may not understand,” She said when his faced squeezed to a frown, “but it’s what I have to do. If I stay here any longer it may not be as fulfilling as when I started auditing all those years ago.”
He looked confused. “What does self-fulfilment have to do with this? We are making serious money here! In fact, what can be more fulfilling than that?”
Her mouth curved into a smile and she said confidently, “Doing what God wants me to do.”
He hissed. “God? I should have guessed that you are one of those religion fanatics. Are you telling me God doesn’t want you to have a good life here? Are you telling me He wants you to be poor? Oh please! Stop all this crap and tell me a better excuse.”
“There’s no other reason.”
“Are you aren’t planning on opening an auditing firm to run me out of business?”
“No, why would I do that? That would just give me a bad look in-front of clients.”
He shrugged. “Okay, suit yourself. Do whatever you like. Let your lawyer get in-touch with my lawyer and let’s get this done as soon as possible. In the meantime you can let me see the people you have in mind and start all the necessary process.”
“Thank you Kobina.”
“No. I should say thank you to you for letting me have sole ownership and freeing me from yourself and your weird ways. When I first met you I thought you were a cool-headed business woman and together we would make waves in the auditing world. I didn’t know I was setting myself up for disappointments.”
He walked out on her and slammed the door.
Adesewa leaned back on her seat and closed her eyes as she sighed in relief. Like a heavy burden had been lifted from her chest. It had gone way better than she had expected. Knowing Kobina he would probably spread rumours and want to shame her but she wasn’t bothered.
Her phone vibrated and she checked it to see a text message from Korede asking how it went. She called him instead of replying.
“How did it go? Was praying here for all to go fine.”
“Awww… Thanks. It went well. God took control of everything. Kobina agreed to my ideas and we are going to draw up the necessary papers as soon as possible.
He can’t wait to be rid of me.” Adesewa chuckled. “He thinks I’m a religion fanatic.”
“Eh-ya. He knows nothing about these things. It’s all good. So when do we celebrate?”
Adesewa laughed. “Celebrate? We aren’t done yet now.”
“So? Don’t we praise God in advance for what He has done for us? Why don’t we celebrate as well?”
“Yeah . . .”
“Actually, I’m looking for an excuse to spend more time with you. Is that bad?”
She bit her lip and smiled, loving how open he was with her. “No, I want to spend time with you too.”
“Great! I’ll pick you up at seven at your office.”
“Hey! What about my car? Will I just leave it here? How will I get to work tomorrow morning.”
“You women and questions sha. Leave it there. I will pick you up tomorrow morning and take you to work. I will be your chauffeur for the morning and whenever you want me to.”
“Hmm . . . Hope you don’t regret your words later on.”
“I really hope not. See you this evening.”
“Bye.” She dropped the call and took a deep breath and smiled to herself. She was happy. No doubt about it. If this was what it meant to be in God’s will and live in peace despite life’s hurdles . . . She would choose to do it over and over again.
Pamela wasn’t feeling too good. She just wanted to crawl into her bed and sleep but it was a couple of hours till closing time. She forced herself to keep working and chewed gums and licked on sweets just so she could stay awake. When it was lunch time she didn’t want to sit with the other girls. She went out of the office cafeteria and got food from other food vendors that were nearby. When she was back from lunch she figured eating a large meal of jollof-rice and fried-rice with coleslaw and chicken had just intensified her need for sleep.
“Pamela are you okay? You look worn-out.” Mrs. Ernest asked her. She was one of the big bosses in the company that Amanze had introduced her and Efe to during the company’s annual end of the year party. She was a nice woman though other people in the office often faulted her for bombarding them with programmes happening in her church.
“I’m fine ma. Just a little tired.” Pamela used the back of her hand to cover a yawn. “I would get some rest when I get home.”
Mrs. Ernest nodded. “You should do that. You have to be well to do your work and if something happens to you the work would still go on regardless. So don’t stress yourself too much.”
Pamela nodded in agreement. “Thank you ma.”
She turned to leave then turned back again and dug into her bag and brought out a flyer. “I have this program coming up this Saturday at my church. I just feel it’s something that would interest you. If you don’t want to come it’s fine, but I hope you would.”
Pamela took the flyer from her and took a quick glance at it. It was a youth program that involved singing, panel discussions, drama, comedy and all sorts. There was also free food included.
“I would think about it. Thank you ma.”
Mrs. Ernest smiled brightly, revealing her perfect dentition. “You’re welcome my dear. Hope to see you there.”
When she was gone Pamela stared at the flyer again. It had been a long time she laughed or did something fun for herself. She hadn’t even been to the cinemas for a while now.
Why not go to the cinemas instead and catch up with the latest? What would going to church do for you? Look at Efe. Her life is not anything to write about. What’s the point?
She pondered on the thought briefly. She looked at the flyer again and the words written at the bottom grabbed her attention. Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.
She shook her head to wade off the discouraging thoughts and strengthened her resolve. She would go for the program. She was tired of watching other people’s fantasy lives and felt she needed something more realistic, especially now that she was at such a difficult moment in her life. She released a heavy sigh. Her mother called her once in a while to find out how she was doing. On one of such occasions their conversation hadn’t gone so well.
“I’m fine mum just taking it one day at a time.”
“Please take it easy my dear. I pray for you to have a smooth pregnancy without complications and problems. Make sure you rest a lot. Eat good food and not too much junk if you don’t want your baby to be too fat and tear your -”
“Mummy!” Pamela chuckled. “I’ve heard. I would watch what I eat.”
“Have you registered at a clinic yet?”
Pamela shook her head. “I haven’t.” She had been procrastinating on doing that.
“Haba! Why nau? You shouldn’t be left unattended. Make sure you register in a clinic as soon as possible! Make sure you and the baby are in perfect condition.”
“Yes mum. How are you?”
She sighed. “I’m fine. We are all doing fine. It just saddens us that you can’t come here any-more. Your siblings miss you.”
Pamela wiped the tears building in her eyes. “I miss them too. Please greet them for -”
“Who are you talking to?!” Her father shouted in the background.
“Ah, I didn’t hear you come in. How are you? How was your day?”
“You better answer me! I asked who you were talking to. I hope it’s not that prostitute of a daughter. Give me your phone.”
The line went dead after that.
Pamela had tried calling her back but it was busy. She didn’t want to risk going over to the house or keep calling. She kept pushing away worrisome thoughts until later on in the evening when her mother had sent a message that all was well and Pamela shouldn’t worry and she would get in touch with her as soon as she could.
Pamela wondered when that would be.
And then the thought came again. Enjoy yourself by watching a movie and having fun. Why disturb yourself with so much worries?
This time, she let herself be cajoled by the thought. She took the flyer from the table and chucked it in her drawer.
“So, this one that you have decided to show your face after five months . . . Would you like me to kill chicken in celebration?” Daniel’s father said, reclining on his rocking-chair and his long, thin legs resting on a pouffe. Daniel had decided it was time he reconciled with his father and they both try to be on good terms. No matter how hard it might look. He had prayed for the day to go smoothly and for his father not to give him a hard time in accepting his apology. His mother had gone out to the market with Ulunma so it left enough time for father and son to talk.
“I don’t think the chicken would be necessary. Unless of-course you want to make it a goat then I would gladly accept.”
His father raised his brow. “Is that to depict how stubborn you have been over the last few years and now you have come to your senses just like the prodigal son?”
Daniel chuckled. “Dad, I’m sorry about everything. I’m sorry I went against your wishes. I’m sorry I have not been the son you expected me to be. I’m very sorry sir.”
His father looked sceptical at the whole thing. “What made you change all of a sudden?”
Daniel thought about Mitchell and all he had learnt in the last couple of months. “I guess you can say I met people who God used to get me back on track. After I dropped Ulunma here my life just seemed to be spiralling down and I didn’t know how to get back on my feet. I started attending bible-studies that someone invited me to and things just got better from there.” He had also gone to see his cousin, John and his wife Funlola, who looked very pregnant, to apologise for his wrongs. They had both been over-joyed when he shared all that had transpired over the last couple of months and shared in details his meeting Mitchell and her present condition at the hospital.
“Okay,” His father began, putting a halt to his thoughts, “So now that your senses are back, what do you plan on doing with Efe? Are you still getting the divorce?”
“I don’t want to rush into anything yet but I think Efe and I need to sit down and talk about it. I know it’s my fault that we’re currently in this position.”
His father beamed at him. “I must say that I’m proud of the man I see seated here in-front of me. Ahn-ahn. You have changed o. This church must be a good church.”
Daniel chuckled. “it’s not just about the church. It’s also about having an open heart to accept the truth.”
“And it seems that truth has been drilled into your head. Thank God for that.”
“Yeah, thank God.” Daniel couldn’t understand how much God loved him to keep drawing him back to Himself despite his many mistakes and how far he fell away from Him. It reminded him of the story of the prophet in the Bible that married a prostitute and had to keep going back for her over and over again. It reminded him of God’s love for Israel. It reminded him of how much Jesus went a long way to bring salvation to someone like him. It was just like John marrying Funlola.
It was all too wonderful and great for him to understand.
His father looked at him closely. “Your mother is of the opinion that you and Efe should divorce. Did she tell you she travelled all the way to Calabar to give Efe her blessings for your divorce?”
Daniel’s eyes widened in shock. “I had no idea. When did this happen?” He couldn’t believe his mother would go behind his back and do such a thing. Who gave her the right to interfere?
“A few weeks ago. I didn’t support the idea but she made me think it would be a good idea for the both of you so you can be happy and live your own lives without us interfering. Look Daniel, we only did what we thought was best. To me, Efe is a good girl with a good head on her shoulders. But now I’m willing to ask and not pressure you. Do you still want to be married to Efe?”
“Yes, I’m going to talk it out with her and we would work things out. We are married before God and I have an obligation towards her.” If God kept ringing it in his heart not to divorce Efe … then surely He had plans for the both of them.
TO BE CONTINUED…. (Please Leave a Comment )
Author: Temitope Ogunyinka
Temitope Ogunyinka, is a loving, caring and friendly person. She is passionate about impacting the world through timeless wisdom and knowledge found in her thought provoking stories and writing that applies to all ages. Her stories and articles cut across love, relationship and romance in a way that does not deny the relevance of God in our everyday life. She is a devoted christian, passionate about bringing people to the knowledge of God’s true and unfailing love.
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