Bible Quote for the Day:
What actually took place is this: I tried keeping rules and working my head off to please God, and it didn’t work. So I quit being a “law man” so that I could be God’s man. Christ’s life showed me how, and enabled me to do it. I identified myself completely with him. Indeed, I have been crucified with Christ. My ego is no longer central. It is no longer important that I appear righteous before you or have your good opinion, and I am no longer driven to impress God. Christ lives in me. The life you see me living is not “mine,” but it is lived by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I am not going to go back on that.
Galatians 2:19-20 MSG
You put Your love on the line
To bear the weight of sin that was mine
Washing my rivers of wrongs
Into the sea of Your infinite love
With arms held high
Lord I give my life
Knowing I’m found in Christ
In Your love forever
With all I am
In Your grace I stand
The greatest of all romance
Love of God my Savior
Mercy roars like hurricane winds
Furious love laid waste to my sin
To the one who had rescued my soul
To the one who has welcomed me home
To the one who is Savior of all
I sing forever
Zainab sang the song with eyes closed and hands lifted high. Her heart close to bursting with love. Hillsong was fast becoming one of her favourite Gospel artistes. Her voice may not be as wonderful as the singer’s but she knew God wouldn’t mind. If He did why would He have given her such a craoky voice? She chuckled. God had been so good to her. Too good. Why would a God that created and owned the whole universe want to be in a relationship with her? Why would He love her so intensely as to send His Son to die for her sins? Just like the song said He had put His love on the line for her whether she accepted it or not.
She could never have imagined that her life would turn out the way it did. All of a sudden it was like her life had a new meaning. . . A new purpose. Everything plan or goal she set to achieve seemed trivial compared to whatever it was God had in store for her, and Zainab had a feeling it was going to be big.
She looked up then. It was time to board the plane. She picked up her hand-bag and hand-luggage. She was really doing it. She was going to see family.
What? Efe leaned against the wall. She was at a loss for words. “I’m sorry can you please repeat what you just said?”
He chuckled. “Hope I didn’t call you at a bad time. I usually get to work early ‘cause I like to settle somethings before starting the day. I said you’re a free woman now. I got the divorce papers this morning when I stepped into my office. I expect you to be jubilating now.” The lawyer said to her. “So the divorce would be up to speed. I would send the documents to the necessary parties and would give you a progress report. Is that okay?”
She shook her head. Daniel signed the papers? How did the divorce papers leave her home and get to the lawyer? How did Daniel sign it when it was here with me? Or is there an extra copy? It just didn’t make any sense to her.
“Mrs. Nwachukwu?” The lawyer said, breaking into her thoughts. His voice now sounding impatient. “Are you there?”
“Yes, sorry. It’s fine. Please keep me updated. Thank you.”
She ended the call and went to the living room to where she had last seen the documents. Her eyes scanning the centre-table. The brown envelope was gone. Was she suddenly losing her mind? She searched through the stacks of magazines on the table but it wasn’t there. She even checked under the table but couldn’t find it.
God, what’s going on? I thought I left the papers here on the centre-table.
“Pamela! Pamela!” Efe called out to her.
Pamela walked into the living-room barefooted and rubbing her eyes. The bohemian weave she had made a few days back was scattered on her head. “What?” She said after yawning. “Why are you shouting my name so early this morning as if the building is on fire.”
“Sorry. Did you take the brown envelope on this table?”
Pamela shook her head and sat on the couch, strecthing her long legs on the arm of the chair. “No, I didn’t take any brown envelope. What happened?”
Efe placed her hands on her waist, perplexed. “I can’t seem to find the divorce papers. My lawyer just called to say Daniel signed the papers.”
Pamela’s jaw dropped and her eyes widened. The sleep clearing from her eyes immediately. “Daniel signed the papers? Wow!”
“Yes! What I can’t seem to understand is the last time he came here he dropped the papers with me and they were not signed. Now I’m hearing he has signed and sent them to my lawyer. How could that have happened?”
“Are you sure you didn’t send them to him and you forgot?”
Efe shook her head and paced about their living-room. “I don’t think I would forget such an important thing like that.”
“Then how could the papers have left? Abi it flew out of the apartment?”
Efe threw a frown at Pamela. “Very funny.” She stopped and sat on another couch. God, please tell me what’s going on. Where are the papers?
“Do you think someone took them? When was the last time you saw them?”
Efe thought back to when she saw the envelope. It was still there the night Amanze came to see her. Father, could it be? She looked at Pamela. “The last time I saw it was when Amanze came over. It was under all those your fashion magazines.”
Pamela raised a brow. “You think he took it?”
Efe couldn’t say yes but she had a deep feeling that there was something cooking and she had to pray hard. Why was it when she had decided to give Daniel another chance that this was happening? The last thing Daniel told her was he was going to wait for her decision before signing the papers. Had he grown tired of waiting? Or was there someone knew in his life? Or maybe he was back with Adesewa? Efe shook her head. The latter couldn’t be true. The devil was trying to play on her emotions and she wasn’t going to succumb to it.
“You know . . . I overheard you guys’ conversation the other day. You and Amnze. I didn’t mean to eavesdrop. I was just going to the toilet when I heard your voices. Are you happy you broke things off with him? No regrets?”
“No regrets. It’s what God wants me to do and I’m at peace with it. I just feel bad about hurting him and I hope he forgives me. I don’t know. I think I may have given him a wrong impression of God.” Efe sighed. “With the way I behaved I just made it look like marriage isn’t of great importance and I misrepresented how God views it.”
“How does God view marriage? What’s the big deal about it? I mean I look at my parents and,” Pamela exhaled, “their marriage is far from encouraging. I have this fear at the back of my mind that I would miss it and end up like them.”
“It’s really deep. Even I don’t fully understand it but i would explain the little I know. It’s about two people with different personalities coming together. They complement each other. Just like how it is with the Trinity. They ‘re one but have different functions and personalities. Marriage should also show God’s perfect love.” The scripture came to mind, Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. Efe had a flashback to when at a point in her life she had vowed to love Daniel and be with him in the good and bad times. Her love had been put to the test with all that transpired between the both of them. She knew what God’s love entailed but her heart had literally turned cold towards Daniel due to the hurts and pains that loving that way, God’s way, had been easily cast aside.
Is it too late now? God am I too late? Efe sighed and looked at Pamela to find her talking. “Sorry what did you say?”
Pamela opened her mouth, then closed it again. She shook her head. “Never mind. We would talk about me later. I think you should call Daniel and ask him what happened. And if you are going to get back with him then stop the divorce stuff and you guys work it out. Truth is, the Daniel that came all the way to Calabar to settle things wouldn’t just give up at the last minute. Call him.” She got up and stretched. “And let’s get to work ’cause it’s already 6:45.”
Efe’s eyes widened.
She stared at the ring again. Korede had spoken with her parents to receive their blessings for the proposal and Adesewa could imagine her mother being elated over the news. Was that why she was asking all those funny questions the last time she called? Asking if Korede was back in the country and when he would be returning. If there was anything new happening with her.
Adesewa shook her head in amazement. Everyone had known except for her.
She couldn’t believe Audrey had helped in planning the whole thing with Korede. Zainab had received the video from Audrey and called to congratulate her. His proposal had come as a pleasant surprise to her. Not that it was uneexpected since they had already discussed marriage at one point in time. It just wasn’t something she thought would happen anytime soon. She recalled the dinner they had with her parents.
“I invited his parents for dinner as well.”
Adesewa’s eyes widened in shock. “What? Why would you do that?”
“How was I supposed to know that you guys were dating and it’s him that you were bringing over for dinner.” Her mother had said. Adesewa but her lip nervously. She hadn’t expected to break the news of theri going out to both parents at the same time. It was definitley going to be disastrous!
Her mother went on. “It serves you right for hiding such a delicate information from me.”
Adesewa raised a brow. “What information?”
Her mother smiled at her knowingly and left her standing in the kitchen while the maids were bustling about trying to get the food ready and every other thing in order. Adesewa had called Korede and told him about his parents coming over for the dinner as well.
“Oh, that’s good. We get to kill two birds with one stone.”
“You seriously are not concerned about what might likely happen?”
“What would happen?”
“You don’t know my mother. She would start asking questions and in the process start putting thoughts in your own mother’s head and they would want to rush us into getting married on time.”
“That’s not a problem. I’m ready when you’re ready. Or you’re not?”
She had rolled her eyes. Obviously he wasn’t seeing sense in her worries. “It’s not like I’m not ready to get married I just don’t want her to be on my case. She can frustrate me atimes.”
Korede chuckled. “It’s all going to be fine baby.”
Later on in the evening dinner had gone better than she expected. Her mother had shied away from anything marriage or relationship and had brought up conversations on other things.
Bringing her thoughts back to the present she admired the ring on her finger. It was exactly what she wanted. Nothing too extravagant or over the top. Her former self would have wanted something big to show off to her friends, but this was okay. All the things that had mattered to her in the past didn’t anymore ‘cause of how much God had transformed her. All the while she had been with Daniel and thought she was happy, God had something greater in mind for her. Something she herself couldn’t have put together.
Adesewa didn’t want to imagine how things may have been if she remained with her ex. Would she have remained happy? Would she have been so in-tune with God to discover His will for her life? Or would she just have run her company into the grounds? Truth? Only God knew what would happen. He alone knew what was best and Adesewa strongly believed that this. . . Where she was at the moment. . . Was best.
Amanze cut the call and resumed his work. He thought he would feel elated at what he did. One thing was sure though . . . he didn’t feel guilty for taking the divorce papers from Efe’s apartment and sending them to Daniel.
Amanze balled his palms into fists.
It was because he came into the picture after so many months that she was suddenly confused about their relationship. He was sure once the divorce was over she would change her mind. The lawyer had already received the files and was going to work on them.
He sat back on his chair. He wasn’t going to sit still and let the woman he loved walk away from him just like that. He wasn’t going to be made a fool again. First it was Kokomma, and now Efe. He shook his head in amazement. It wasn’t like Efe was extremely beautiful that he was going for her; he liked her person and doubted very much she would cheat on him. Loving her then came naturally to him when he got to know her later on.
His line of thought was disrupted by the knock on his door.
“Yeah, come in.”
He watched as Efe walked into his office looking simple and beautiful in a chiffon blouse and pencil skirt. Her hair packed up in a bun. He looked down at the papers on his table and pretended not to care.
“Good morning sir.”
“Morning. You realize you’re late this morning.”
“Yes sir. I’m sorry about that. I just had a little issue back at home.”
He still didn’t look at her and feigned being engrossed with the documents before him. “How can I help you?”
“I – I know things aren’t as they were between us. I hope you find it in your heart to forgive me.”
“This is neither the time not place to bring up your personal issues Mrs Nwachukwu. This is an office not a love soap opera.” He looked at her then. “Get back to work before I query you.”
She blinked. “Right. Excuse me sir.” She walked out of his office.
It was one of the hardest things he had to do since he was making right his wrongs. God hadnt said much about his divorce to Efe and he wasn’t worried because God had let him know it was all working for their good.
What had Daniel worried was something else entirely. He had tried talking it out with God but then he had still received the same instruction. Daniel stared at the church and took a deep breath for the fourth time since he had driven there thirty minutes ago. His palms were sweaty. Everything in him wanted to turn his car around and drive back to the church Mitchell had invited him to, but God wanted him back at his old church. What were they going to say about him now? Had they heard of how things had fallen apart with Efe?
He could remember the last time he had fallen and had been placed on suspension from the choir. He had served his punishment with courage and was later placed back on the choir. But then he had fallen again. What was to be his fate?
“God, why do You want me to do this? How can I face them?”
My grace is sufficient for you. My strength made strong in your weakness.
Daniel had learnt the hard way that following God’s will was the best thing he could do after all the mistakes he had made in times past. He wasn’t going to fight it any longer. If God was with him then he wanted to believe everything would be okay.
Taking a deep breath once more, he got out of the car and walked into the church. Things had changed considerably. The plastic chairs had been replaced with cushioned ones and the walls had been repainted. There were also additional lightings which added to the beauty of the church. The usher that gave him an envelope was unfamiliar. He quickly took the seat that another usher led him to.
It was a midweek service so he didn’t expect to see everyone he knew.
“It’s a lie! Daniel Nwachukwu?”
Daniel closed his eyes. Here we go . . .
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