LOVE HAS FOUND ME…

A lot of people have a wrong notion of love. February 14 is tagged as a day for expressing love. This story is about someone that was found by love on this day. People exchange chocolates and cards but she found a love that would last a lifetime.

Photo0301

‘Meda, a young lady in her late teens, was with friends. “Last month, my Dad took my family to a place. I can’t remember the name of the place. It was a restaurant near my uncle’s place.  We went there after a family member’s engagement ceremony. Dad  had promised to take us there when we spotted the place a day before. We ate Chinese food and drank green tea. There was also a small shop there where bags and shoes were sold. The shoes were sent in from London and the bags from France. “

Truth is ‘Meda had been at home that month and she hadn’t gone past the central market. Later that night, before bed she whispered “Dear Lord, forgive me. I shouldn’t have lied. I want to go to heaven.’ She knew God. He was a personality who lived in the skies.

On February 13, 2004, ‘Meda went for the interview for prospective choristers in church. When it was her turn, she took her seat.  The first question was “Are you born again?” She answered in the affirmative. “When did you become born again?’

“When I was in the children church and when I was in the youth church.” She replied

This response didn’t sit well with the leader who was asking her questions. He explained that there must be a definite encounter. You must be sure of when this happened. ‘Meda left the church with a heavy load on her heart. How come she had never had such a definite experience? Had she been so blinded by morals that she couldn’t see her fallen state?

Looking back, it was so true. She hadn’t had that life changing experience. She didn’t even know God. He was so vague. She heard about Him every Sunday but she blatantly disregarded Him during the week. She knew He came to die, but that price didn’t actually seem so expensive. She was afraid of the Rapture. She lied so conveniently. She insulted people so confidently. She struggled with so many thoughts that night. Was she born again?

Disturbed into the early hours of Feb. 14, she was broken. She needed this savior. She craved for this love. How could she have been so comfortable with the way her life was. She knelt down and asked the Lord into her heart. She asked Him to forgive her of the way she had been living. How could she have disregarded such great a price. She tarried on her knees, basking in the wonder of His presence. An indescribable peace filled her heart along with a joy that was boundless. Wow! So this was it. This is how it feels to know Him. Love had found her at last.

The God who lived in the skies now lived in her heart. He was a friend, a companion, in every sense of the word  That experience was the dawn of a new life for ‘Meda.

Some searched for love on that day, but she experienced love that would last longer than her lifetime. You can have the experience too.

KATSINA NOT KASTINA…

Its Katsina not Kastina…

Sincerely, I didn’t know how Katsina was pronounced until I got to Katsina. I’m sure a lot of people didn’t know that.

Like I said earlier, there are 34 local governments in Katsina. These can be divided into four zones- Katsina, Daura, Dutsinma and Funtua.Image

Something interesting about Katsina is its road networks. The roads are much better than those in the south and I love the streetlights in the night. Well, I love streetlights whether in the north or south. They look like lamps hanging from the sky at a distance

.Image

One thing you should know is that you will not find taxi’s in Katsina. That’s surprising since the roads are motorable. The major mode of transportation is the motorcycle. There are also tricycles, popularly known as Keke. These tricycles are well decorated. Some have cushioned seats, curtains and the ceiling of the tricycle is covered with a blanket. Some have small doors. They are well taken care of. These are equivalent to taxi’s.

 

Do you remember me?

I’m sure you don’t know me. But when you read this you’ll remember. I have been blessed. The story I am about to tell you is what I told my grand-children some months ago. You are probably reading this in another century. I hope the story blesses you and makes you acknowledge the greatest blessing of all.

I was six years old. This very morning I had helped Mother cover my baby sister with a shawl after breakfast. I had also helped stack the breakfast plates against the wall. I had wanted to follow Father to tend to our sheep and chickens but he said I should stay home. He wanted to visit one of the Elders. There was a lot of stories going round town. Dad told us at supper the previous night of a man who healed Henrik the cripple. This man had healed numerous crippled men. He had healed blind men and all manner of sick people. Many people were happy that such things were happening. We had all been waiting for a Messiah to deliver us from the dominant hand of the Romans. Prominent officials felt He was just arousing attention to Himself and causing unnecessary distractions in the society. Besides, He claimed that He was from God. So the Jewish leaders were looking into His case. Father was a Scribe. He had just joined a popular sect and important events were chronicled. The Elder he went to visit would give him adequate information.

Mother later told me to run along to play when she wanted to tidy our little house. I ran down the road till I got to the heart of the town. Under the fig tree were my friends. This was our usual meeting spot every morning.

We played till noon and we realized a crowd gathered at a distance. We ran to join them. That’s when I saw Him for the first time. My friends and I squeezed in between the adults and pushed our way to the front. He sat on a large stone under a sycamore tree. He was teaching the people. He was saying something about a tax collector and a Pharisee. I wasn’t following what He was saying. This was the man called Jesus.  My friends and I were stopped by a young man with a thick mustache. His friend called him Simon and he told us to sit and not go near Jesus. Well, we maneuvered and sat quite close to him anyway.

He looked so simple like any random man but there was something about His countenance. He had soft eyes and His voice was so gentle, yet strong. He spoke so lovingly yet authoritatively. Everyone was quiet. Believe me, if you had been there, you would have hung on to every word. Then something happened.

Little Yosef was sitting on his mother’s lap. He crawled out and toddled over to where Jesus was speaking. Elizabeth, his five year old sister got up and reached for her brother but the most startling thing happened. Jesus picked up little Yosef and placed him on His lap. He smiled at Elizabeth and carried her too. Their Mother didn’t know what to do. She just smiled at Jesus. Then Jesus looked our way and smiled. We stood and ran to him. Simon and some of his friends, the disciples, were trying to restrain other children.  I will never forget the words He spoke then. He said “Suffer not the little children to come unto me, for of such is the kingdom of God.” He put little Yosef down and carried us too. Then He put his hand on our heads and blessed us. His smile was so warm. Here was a man who so lovingly carried us and gave us attention. I’m sure you understand that such a person would have been every child’s hero.

That moment was so special to me. I knew He wouldn’t be able to touch every child in Jerusalem, but He blessed me. Though I was so young, I knew that would be a moment I would forever live to remember. I may have been a random boy to those gathered that day, but I knew that moment would distinguish me forever. I’m sure you may have read the Bible over and over but you would never had wondered what happened to those children Jesus blessed that day. I was one of them.

It would surprise you to know I never came as close to Jesus after that day. But I will never forget how those hands turned things around for me. I knew right then that He was the Saviour. I believed, though my parents still doubted. When he was crucified a year later, it was a shock to some and a cause for celebration for others. His disciples began to speak about Him and I believed on Him. I later grew to become a Scribe. I met Paul, whose conversion was nothing short of a miracle. My adult life has been a blessing. I have a wonderful family. Though, we went through persecution, but the Lord was with us. He spared my life to see my grandchildren.

Now you know me. I am that boy who was blessed by Jesus of Nazareth long ago, on that blessed day when others thought we were nothing more than a disturbance. You may not have met the Saviour in person, but undoubtedly, you’ve read about Him. The amazing thing is that He blesses as much as he did then, even today. All you need to do is believe. No encounter could be more life transforming. I told my grandchildren to know and believe Him right from their tender age like I did. Jesus wants them to come. He is constantly inviting them. My friends and I did all we could to get close to Him, they too should strive to know Him. He won’t chase them away. He will smile and carry them. That encounter was a great blessing. You can have one too.Image

BROKEN WALLS (I)

Walls ensure security, defense and protection to those within it. A number of nations have significant walls. In Germany there’s the Berlin wall. There is also the Great Wall in China. There’s the Weeping Wall in Jerusalem. Nehemiah rebuilt the Jerusalem wall, the walls of Jericho fell, even Katsina and Kano were surrounded by walls before its collapse.

Walls are put up for various reasons. Some for demarcation, some for protection. Wealthy people build walls around their homes to guard their supposed wealth. 

As believers we should have a wall of prayer around us at all times. It creates a demarcation between us and the enemy. This is because we are in tune with the Saviour. The Bible admonishes us to ‘pray without ceasing’. It’s a pity this wall has been broken in many lives. Prayer has become burdensome and many are not motivated to pray unless they are in a dire need or in a terrible situation. Some only enjoy corporate prayers. Tarrying in the closet is now difficult to do.

Well if you want  a closer walk with God, you need to rebuild the wall of prayer. Prayer is communing with God. Communication is a very vital part of any relationship. It’s the major way by which any relationship grows. It keeps you sealed in and enclosed with Him. It shuts out other distractions because there is an indescribable sweetness that comes when you’re in God’s presence. Something just keeps drawing you back. So if your wall of prayer has been broken, know that it’s an avenue for uninvited guests who will interrupt your sweet communion with God.

If you’ve been praying and you’re getting discouraged, if you feel God is not answering you, don’t worry. The one who gave you ears has one Himself and He makes all things beautiful in His time. He will answer. Just make sure you are paying attention.

So get back on your knees and begin to rebuild his wall.Image