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THE CHILDISH LOOK

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There’s something about the way a baby looks at people that’s different. Perhaps its something to do with the fact that for the first year or so they have a fairly limited vocabulary, and their eyes are the window through which they gain their first perceptions of life.

When an adult makes eye contact with another one it is accompanied with years of visual experience, holding on tightly to various insecurities, expectations, stereotypes and prejudices.

As an adult it can often be an overwhelming experience, sitting in a subway surrounded by absolute strangers who all seem to be whispering to themselves “look around but don’t make eye contact for too long”. You can feel the tension in the air when ascending in an elevator as each individual struggles to bear with the agonising 2 minute silence that goes with the journey. Yet seemlessly a baby in the same vicinity finds an exciting avenue for exploration, moving from face to face, oblivious to the awkward vibes that the strangers bodies silently portray.

When a baby is happy to see someone it is evident in its eyes. There is no element of hypocricy or pretence when its eyes light up in recognition. There is no eagerness to please or willingness to satisfy any obligated pleasantries; all that can be seen is genuine excitement.

When a baby looks at someone it can see more than most adults. It carefully analyses each element of a persons face, able to determine if this is a friend or a foe. It maintains a constant stare, paying no attention to the invasion of privacy because it lives by different rules. Innocent rules; rules that allow it to feel no societal pressure of any kind, as it navigates its way through the environment, each day slowly being corrupted by experience.

As the baby grows it begins to learn that certain looks are unacceptable. He begins to see that each look carries with it a specific meaning, capable of being understood or misinterpreted.

So he learns how to look again. He learns to see things the way everyone else see things, and now he chooses his looks carefully.

He notices that how he looks can be the difference between getting something or losing out. He is forced to fix up, look sharp and never cross the road without looking both ways.

His childish look has gone. Facial hair and wrinkles have now become a permanent part of the equation, as he struggles to take pride in his appearance. When he looks in the mirror the person he sees staring back is barely a reflection of his youth. With his old age he has been forced to learn that looks will change, meanings may change; and above all, looks can be deceiving.

 
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Posted by on August 7, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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NIGERIAN TRANSPORT vs TRANSPORT IN ENGLAND

Nigerian motorcycle

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“Falomo! Falomo! Enter with your ten ten naira no change o!”. The adventure begins with the call of the bus conductor. A Nigerian version of tarzan appears, but no, he isn’t hanging on to a tree; he’s hanging on the side of a bus.

Elbows, punches and jabs follow as passengers scramble amongst themselves to find a seat – Health and Safety is unavailable to comment.

The move from A to B is characterized by constant shouts as the driver goes from stop to stop; conductor perched and skillfully negotiating bus fares from half way outside the vehicle.

If you’re lucky you might get a Christian evangelist who preaches an entire sermon during the journey, and ofcourse he never forgets to take an offering. The work of God na still work, as they say.

If you’re unlucky though, you might board what is commonly known as “one chance”, where everyone on the bus is a robber, apart from you. Not the most exciting transportational experience.

But ofcourse, there are indeed more exhilarating means of transport in Nigeria. In fact there is one means that has become a subject of legend, and the stories of its escapades will no doubt be passed on from generation to generation, as it makes its way through Nigerian streets, eager to pave its way through history. It is a mode of movement that needs no introduction. A thing of wonder, mystery and tongue twisting fascination; the one, the only, “okada”.

I kid you not when I say all that one has to do is step outside, blow an extreemly loud and vigorous kiss, and the okada will magically appear to request for your destination.

The ride itself is like a journey through time. There is no gap too small or road too narrow. No puddle too large, or storm too cold. Its not a bird, its not a plane; it is, an okada.

For those who may be unfamiliar with this creature, it is more commonly known in other parts of the world as a “motorcycle”, but Nigerians know its much more than that; as it cuts through traffic jams, one way roads and “side walks” that barely exist.

The more conservative Nigerians would rather take a taxi; crossing their fingers in the hope that the car windows can actually be wound down.

The cost of the journey itself is never about the standard price, that’s why every Nigerian has become astute in negotiation techniques.

The passenger states his destination: “I dey go Surulere”

The taxi driver responds: “How much you wan pay?”

Passenger: “Make I give you 1,000”

Taxi driver: “1,000 naira to reach surulere? Petrol don dey cost now o! Oya bring 5,000 make I carry you go”

Passenger: “5,000 naira ke, my money no reach that one o; I fit give you 1,500”

Taxi driver: “Ok just put 200 Naira on top make we dey go”

The passenger accepts and the negotiation is complete – the journey proceeds.

Transport is one of those subjects that graphically demonstrates how far apart England is from Nigeria. In England the bus driver and conductor are one and the same, and he is fortunate enough to spend the entire journey sitting down, rather than suspended in mid-air.

Electronic monitors spell out each stop, so the driver has a chance to save his voice for more useful conversation. Payments can be made on or off the bus and are not subject to negotiation; and passengers can press a bell without needing to shout “Owa!” as an indication that the bus has reached their stop.

Transportation options in England aren’t limited to roads, as they are in Nigeria. Trains and tubes are a popular means as well, running on tracks above and underneath the ground. “Rush hour” as they call it is a time when the English get more in touch with their Nigerian side; pushing, shoving and kicking because each person needs to be at a more important place than the next.

One might think that the level of automation the English have would create a fool-proof system; but the truth is millions are lost each year as machines have more of a say than humans.

Taxi drivers rely on “meters” to give them an accurate price quotation, but ofcourse these devices pay no attention to traffic and deliberatly long routes. Ticket machines provide convenience but offer no help in calculating the cheapest course. Oyster cards issue no reminders to “touch in” and “touch out”, but they are eager to charge fees for suspicion of foul play.

I often wonder which society has the better end of the transportation stick. A disorganised system that provides drama, adventure and human interaction; or an organised system that provides structure, coldness and dialogues with gadgets.

In my view as long as i can get from A to B, that’s good enough for me.

P.S. England could do with some Okada’s. 🙂

 

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Posted by on August 6, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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NIGERIAN EDUCATION vs EDUCATION IN ENGLAND

Graduates walk in

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As a result of the parents I had I was priviledged enough to receive a substancial education in both England and Nigeria.

I was a student in what was allegedly one of the top 5 secondary schools in England, and my Nigerian counter parts spared no cost either. So on a level, I would say I have caught somewhat of a glimpse of the best that both countries have to offer, as far as education is concerned.

Truth be told. There really is no comparison.

In Nigeria the best schools can boast of having constant electricity, the internet and computer labs; perhaps on a sports day they would even take a group to go swimming. The classrooms would be about 20 students large, and they would occasionally have a french teacher that’s actually french.

The best of England though presents a whole other world.

Each student is given their own study room, equipped with a computer and the internet. The boarding house consists of tv rooms, games rooms as well as a private garden. The facilities include fully furnished design and technology labs, sports fields, sports halls, gyms, shooting ranges, basketball courts, tennis courts, astro turfs, athletics track -need I say more. Maids clean the rooms, making sure the laundry is washed, ironed and neatly folded the following morning. Cooks make 2 course meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner – even providing tea and biscuits during the day, along with a fruit bowl that never goes empty at night.

Coming from a nigerian perspective, this is more like a holiday resort than a school.

Looking back I sometimes ask myself if all these amenities truly made a significant difference to my learning ability; perhaps.

One thing I do know is that on a fundamental level, Nigerians really do not know how to educate.

It doesn’t take a long time spent in a Nigerian school to recognise that all that is tested in students is their ability to “cram”.

The students with the highest grades are those that are able to regurgitate word for word what is written in the prescribed text book. It doesn’t matter if they understand it, the important thing to prove is that they actually read the book.

It is therefore not surprising that in Nigeria you can find mechanics that can’t fix cars, electricians that don’t know anything about wiring, and graduates with IT degrees that are barely familiar with computers. This is ofcourse assuming that the student even wrote the exam himself, as opposed to paying someone else to write it for him; a pretty common practice.

In England education is based on finding out how well a student can “apply” what he has learnt. In fact a student that only manages to quote the text word for word would be lucky to escape with a pass.

This fundamental difference in approach is what seperates a student that is able to learn and create, as opposed to read and recite.

Interestingly, Nigerians that have been educated in their system for a while seem to excel when put in an English environment. Perhaps the combination of learning how to retain information in Nigeria and progressing on to learn how to disect the info in England is what fuels this trend.

Even though the English are equipped with countless facilities and the right educational techniques, the youth in general are not really interested in being taught. Going out and getting pissed is a far more attractive option.

The government pays for their education, yet most look forward to reaching the age where they can finally make the independent decision to drop out.

By contrast Nigerians give education an extreemly high regard. An academic certificate of any kind is glorified to an overwhelming degree. I might even go as far as to say that there are few things a Nigerian child can do to please their parents more than coming back home with a degree. Those that aren’t in school are not out by choice, but quite simply because their parents can’t afford it.

Its one of those paradoxes of life where you have a country that has everything but doesn’t appreciate it, compared with a country that has nothing and would do anything for it.

Nigeria simply doesn’t have the facilities needed to put what they learn into practice. A successful university has been reduced to one where the students may actually graduate on time.  As much as it would be fulfilling to say better days are still to come, the reality is the priviledged few that are able to make a change, would rather send their kids abroad than do something about it.

It would be an interesing experiment to swap the citizens of both countries. Perhaps it would give the English a better sense of appreciation; and it would give Nigerians the chance to put what they read into practice.

 

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Posted by on August 5, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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NIGERIAN WOMEN vs WOMEN IN ENGLAND

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It is almost an impossible challenge to attempt to describe a Nigerian woman without a sudden sense of fear gripping my fingers.

Even though there are only words in front of me, I can’t help but see hundreds of Nigerian female faces staring down at me too; their eyes shouting “oya talk now!”, daring me to say something that they might not like to hear.

As I nervously proceed I am reminded of the level of aggression that Nigerian women seem to have. They carry with them an unmissable attitude that only be accurately described with the phrase “you know the p”.

They are an extreemly expressive breed. Their emotions are worn distinctly on their faces, and they are never too shy to let you know exactly what they think.

An arguement with a Nigerian woman is a memorable experience.  With vigourous sucking of teeth and rapid tongue movements they are capable of cutting the proudest man down to size, regardless of if the scene is a wedding or a funeral.

They are extreemly opinionated, ready to argue their cause in a single volatile breath. Strong willed, and with an ambitious mind set. Refusing to be taken advantage of by anyone or any situation.

A Nigerian woman is a woman that you would rather have on your side, than against you.

English women are a much softer species. The power of words cuts deep into their sensitive hearts, because they hold on so dearly to what other people think of them.

Their love of all things cosmetic has made them more superficial than most; eagerly latching on to the hypnotic allure that celebrities provide.

They are always up for a laugh and spontaneous activities that involve adventure, entertainment, and the occasional abuse of a barely legal substance.

Women of England are very submissive, which is not to say they lack an opinion, but they are less willing to get into a battle to prove their stance. Their traditional mindset enables them to have a high tolerance for insensitive men, and men being men often abuse this vulnurable trait. Nevertheless they are overwhelmingly affectionate, making the most of every opportunity to kiss, stroke or caress their significant other, totally blocking out the external world and living only in the “moment”.

Nigerian and English women are truly quite different from each other, certainly in the general sense. I’m sorry to say though that when it comes to men both societies seem to have the wrong idea about relationships. A Nigerian woman primarily wants a man who has some form of “status” in society. Money and the things it brings are very much at the center of their romantic mindset; the bigger the gifts the more love they show to their partner. The English have a much clearer perspective on the internal attributes of love, but they often settle for less in the short term, hanging on to the hope that over time the things they don’t like will somehow change for the better.

Its true. Its much easier to notice the negative attributes of people, and pay no attention to whatever positivity lies within; but often much can be learnt when we are able to see things for what they are.

Nigerian women need to learn that the extent of their love cannot be based on the size of a paycheck. They need to embrace a bit of the softness that the English posses, because patience is indeed a virtue. The English need to develop a better sense of who they are. If self esteem is limited to what others say and do, they are in for a rocky ride through life.

Describing a woman of any culture is a difficult task. For my own safety i must emphasise that my perceptions are limited to my own experience of both societies. On an individual level i have met many exceptions to the general rule, and if you are reading this right now and you know who i am, then you are most certainly that exception.

*WINK*

 

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Posted by on August 4, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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NIGERIAN BELIEFS vs BELIEFS IN ENGLAND

church

Haven’t you heard? Nobody ever dies of natural causes in Nigeria. In fact the most common form of death is as a result of a spiritual curse sent by a spiteful relative in a village.

Nigerians are without a doubt amongst the most superstitious of all cultures. Regardless of their diversity, education or orientation, almost every significant occurrence is attributed to a spiritual entity.

When a Nigerian’s business is going well, “God is in control”. When they are sick, “the devil is a liar”. When they are angry with someone, “God will punish them!”. I can almost confidently say that there are no Nigerians that do not profess some belief, religion or the other –  whether or not they put their beliefs into practice, is a completely different story.

England on paper is supposedly a Christian country. The reality though is that most in practice are atheists or agnostics. A Nigerian would consider this mind set to be an abomination, and as a result they can be very prejudical towards anyone who does not believe that there is a God.

The English belief system is based on principles that are rigid and practical, so in essence i would say that in England, they believe in the law and science. Everything requires a logical explanation. If it cannot be proven or rationally explained then it isn’t really worth considering. Life within the context of belief is about working hard, avoiding the wrong side of the law, and hanging on to the faith that Apple will release its newest product sooner rather than later.

Despite the fact that most of England has a somewhat blatant disregard for the concept of a God, they are very open, respectful and accomodating of other peoples beliefs, and as a society they accept the fact that everyone has the right to choose their faith. Interestingly this approach should surely belong to the culture that recognizes God, but this really isn’t the case when it comes to Nigeria.

A defining difference between the beliefs of Nigerians and the beliefs in England is that the English actually put what they believe in to practice.

On a Sunday morning in Nigeria you are likely to find everyone nicely dressed up heading off to a church somewhere. On that morning faith is at its highest, accompanied with prayers, songs and an inspirational message about monetary blessings. On the way home and during the rest of the week this religious perspective is completely forgotten, and is instead replaced with a new belief system; one where you have faith that “everybody is about to cheat you, so you need to do the cheating first”.

By contrast the English may not go religously to church, but on a general level they place a higher regard for integrity, honesty and commitment to humanitarian causes. Most Sunday mornings are spent at home with their famlies, slowly recovering from the binge that took place the night before. Their values don’t spontaneously change based on the fear of a cruel world, though with cameras on every other road it probably helps to be a bit more trusting.

As far as the beliefs from both countries go, what can be learnt?

Nigerians are in danger of never truly understanding why they believe what they believe. The level of hypocrisy in the society is directly linked to the fact that its people are “born into” religion; as opposed to making a deliberate choice for themselves. Their unquestioned faith blinds them from seeing that good and bad things can happen without the involvement of God or the devil. Losing a job does not necessarily mean that God is angry, neither does getting an “A” in an exam mean that God is on their side. The English recognise that losing a job is usually as a result of indolence; and getting an A in school is as a result of hard work.

On the flip side England is in danger of never finding God in the situations where he is actually present. Their skepticism of all things spiritual keeps them from recognising that life is sometimes more than what meets the eye. Not everything can be conclusively explained through a man with a white lab coat and a medical degree.

Combining the psychology of both worlds would certainly be evidence of growth. Nigerians need a belief system that is not blasphemous to question, and they should respect the fact that spirituality is a lifestyle rather than an identity used  to complete the religious section on a job application. The English for all their openess need to recognise that science too is in fact a religion; and though it boasts of a logical approach, its focus pays very little attention to understanding the spiritual dimensions of life.

If logic was applied to spirituality, we may be surprised to discover that one does not need to be chosen in the place of the other.

 

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Posted by on August 3, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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STUPID LIAR – By: Hamidat Popoola

Girl

Image by Per Ola Wiberg ~ Powi via Flickr

I trudged down the road. Waiting for people is so annoying. She should have gotten here ages ago. Do you know what my pet peeve is? When people lie. Of course, I have lied before and I will still lie, but I hate it when people tell unnecessary lies. She texted me saying she was five minutes away. 30 minutes had gone by since that text and she still wasn’t here. She had already wasted an hour of my time prior the text. Why raise my hopes and crush them? Stupid liar.

I kept walking, formulating in my head what I was going to say to her when I finally saw her. She would get it and I wasn’t going to listen to her apology or silly stories. She always had an excuse. I couldn’t wait to hear the new creative one. Stupid liar.

I pretended like I hate going to my friends because they were so dainty and girly. Psssh. Truth be told, I hate walking. I just didn’t have much of a choice half of the time.

She was supposed to meet me outside my house. One of my houses. I had quickly hurried from my other house to this one cause it was closer to her. Me being a good friend. Pity she couldn’t do the same and consider that I was standing outside in the sun. Although she would probably counter that and ask why I didn’t go back inside when I didn’t see her. She didn’t after all beg me to stay outside in the sun. But she had said she was five minutes away! Stupid liar.

I was almost at her house now and I still didn’t see any sign of her. My phone beeped to notify me of yet another text message. I wasn’t going to read this one either. I wasn’t ready to hear her tale of the day. I bet she would just be leaving her house. Probably eating in the kitchen, laughing at how easily she had led me on. Stupid liar.

The gateman let me in. He knew me quite well. I burst into the kitchen ready to scream ‘A-ha!’ but she wasn’t there. ‘Hello?’ I called. Her mother came down. After exchanging pleasantries, she asked why I was there. Why, to see your daughter you silly woman, I responded…mostly in my head. She looked surprised and said the words that changed everything ‘But she’s at your house’. I argued with her that it couldn’t be. I just left my house. ‘Ahn ahn. I said she is at your house darling. I dropped her outside the gate myself. The house at Oniru? You said that is where you were for the weekend’.

THEN, it clicked.

I ran out of the kitchen faster than the air in the room. I could faintly hear her calling after me. She was in my Oniru house. Crap. I thought I told her the Lekki house. Damn, I didn’t have an Oniru house. I didn’t even have a Lekki house. Scrap that, I didn’t even have a house! I lived in a face-me-i-face-you apartment in Mushin. I had taken different buses just to get to the ‘Lekki house’ before she did and wait outside before she got a chance to knock on the gate and my cover would be blown.

THE TEXT MESSAGES!

I looked at my phone as I ran away from her house. The first text read ‘I’m outside your gate. Come out’.

Then ‘Later you’ll say I wasted your time, come out now. I don’t have credit to call’.

Then ‘I think your gateman is foolish. He is saying he doesn’t know you and I should get away from here’.

Then ‘Who the hell are you?’

I was a 16 year-old girl who lived in Mushin. I met this girl when I had saved enough to go to the Silverbird Galleria. I was standing next to her at the ice cream joint at Barcelos when we started talking. She liked my top. I had stolen it from the line at the back of the compound where someone had spread their clothes. She just assumed I was rich, I didn’t tell her I was. I just played along. It was nice to have a rich friend. I gave her different addresses, claiming my father had different houses just to make sure she didn’t return to the same place too often and discover the truth.

All that hustle. Gone.

She knew the truth now and I doubt she would want to be my friend anymore. You know the moment when you wonder what the point of everything was? Yeah that.

I was the stupid liar.

 
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Posted by on July 8, 2011 in CREATIVITY

 

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MARVIN’S ROOM – By: Hamidat Popoola

Room Sphere

We were in like. Sometime ago.

Seems like it never happened now if you ask me though. The animosity, the negativity. You probably treat me worse than my worst enemy.

I’m not a big fan of questions. So when you ask me when I ask you what went wrong what I think went wrong, you stall me. Prevent us from talking about the real issue at hand because we spend that time arguing about how you should know me well enough to not return my question with a question. But that was you though. You loved to aggravate me.

Don’t.

It isn’t okay. The way we yell, insult each other like we weren’t once sharing kisses, counting stars, holding hands and doing those things lovers used to do. And now when I see you around, I act like you are some stranger I just ran into.

We should have worked out. We didn’t. And that’s okay.

I can accept that you looked me straight in the eye and lied to me about what you wanted. I can accept that you forgot key dates in my life and tried to make up for it with withering flowers and guilt-tasting chocolates. I can accept that ‘it is who you are’ and ‘you are doing the best you can’. I can accept all of that.

What I cannot accept is you changing ‘who you are’ for some other girl. Treating some other girl like some immortal that fell out the womb of Aphrodite. I remember you used to love arguing with me and sometimes it made us laugh, and other times it made me cry. But I see how you stay mute when she speaks. Listen to her every word, nod your head and make her feel like she’s the one. You never did that with me. I cannot accept that.

Are you listening to me right now?        

You don’t have to feel sorry for me. Don’t tell me what it is about her that compels you to be a better person. You always did have an excuse for everything. It was impressive until it started to affect me. No, don’t say you still love me. We cannot work this out. Loyalty was never your finest trait. She’ll be mad just like I was when I walked in on you declaring love for your ex-lover and calling me a rebound. Remember that?

Since you picked up I know she’s not around.

This isn’t me being bitter. I have admitted to myself what I refused to for a long time. We were not meant to work. I don’t want you. At all.

Seeing you love another has hit home a lot of points that I was unwilling scared to face.

I know you still think about the times that we had.

I look at her and think of what it is about her that makes her more of your type than I am. And then I realized that this isn’t about her and neither is it about me. Its all you. And I don’t blame her for loving you. Even a rock would crack at the words you effortlessly reel out. I’m glad you took the wool off. If I’m not good enough for you, then you cannot be good enough for me.

I’m just saying you could do better.

 
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Posted by on June 28, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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MY LIFE AS A LIAR

Cover of Liar

Lying is something that I have to deal with every day of my life. Everywhere I go I’m confronted with liars. Perhaps the most delicate part of the scenario is the fact that most people don’t even know they are liars.

Popular belief says that everyone is a liar. We all lie, and if you claim you don’t tell lies, then you are the biggest liar of all. But I’m of the school of thought that believes that it’s possible to take a decision not to lie.

I’m not a big fan of theories. I believe in the practical aspects of life. Things I do, things I say, are all indicators of who I am. If I choose to ignore certain aspects of myself, I am a liar. If I choose to defend something that is not the truth, I am a liar. Everyone has different opinions right? Some opinions are lies and some are the truth. But im going to deal with what I consider to be the naked truth. No clothes. No shoes. Not even a wrist watch. Just bare assed naked truth.

Let me go back in order to go forward. I am a liar. The only way I can get myself out of that categorisation is if I can tell myself the truth. I’m a pretty good liar. I guess the reason why I’m so good at telling lies is because I grew up with parents that always speak the truth. I don’t have a fairytale image of perfection that most kids have of their parents. All I can say is that in my 23 years of life I have never heard my parents tell a lie… and they have never lied to me.

I’ve never quite met anyone as blunt as my parents. In fact I grew up hating the way they were cause I saw them as self righteous people who live in a bubble that really cant be compared to reality. I don’t like everything about them. There are aspects of their personalities that I would be hesitant to emulate in myself; but I would be lying if I didn’t admit that they were honest people.

My parents are relatively strict. Even though I often understood where they were coming from, that didn’t mean that I liked it. I know it’s good to tell the truth. I know I “should” tell the truth. But if my parents were to ask me the question: “What did you get up to today?” I would be a bit hesitant to say, I woke up, smoked some weed, watched some porn with the guys and fucked some girl I just met. Let’s just say that was a level of truth I wasn’t ready to appreciate. What would be the point? So I would get a lecture, get grounded and monitored on a daily basis? Na. I’d rather stick to the lies. Less dangerous and less problematic was the way to go. I didn’t need the stress that saying the truth would bring. As far as I was concerned, they couldn’t handle the truth, so why bother to tell them?

Make no mistake of it. I never lied by accident. I know exactly when im telling a lie and I know why I’m telling the lie. But that didn’t stop me from lying to myself though. You see I had various ways of justifying things. My mom would tell me, “Femi, don’t go to John’s house.” During the day I would ignore the instruction and I would go to john’s house. But I would go to other places as well. When I get home, my mom would ask, “where are you coming from?” I would mention the places I had been, but I would conveniently leave out the fact that I went to Johns house despite her instructions.

As far as i was concerned. I wasn’t lying. She asked me where I was coming from, and I told her. If she had specifically asked me if I had been to Johns house and I had said no, then that would have been a lie; but this wasn’t. We all know the trick. Conveniently leaving out information and convincing yourself that you are not a liar. I was the king of that. Self deceit can be a beautiful thing when you need to clear your conscience. But the truth of the matter is….. I am a liar. I knew exactly what my mom meant when she asked where I was coming from. I knew her question really was another way of asking: “Did you go to Johns house?” But because she didn’t phrase it in those exact words; I chose to give her an answer that suited me. The fact is….i am a liar. I knew what I was doing when I answered the question. I knew “what she meant” when she asked the question. And I took a decision…. to lie.

I went through great length saying that scenario in detail, because you would be amazed at how many people would not call that lying. After all, they mentioned all the other places they went to which were true, just because they left out one doesn’t mean they lied about it. Like I said…self deceit is a beautiful thing; it’s always there just when you need it the most. But ill tell you something. I stopped deceiving myself a while ago; especially in relation to lying. When I lie; I know I am lying. I don’t need you to define a lie, or create different degrees and extents of lying. I know when I’m telling a lie.

A lot of people accuse me of “over-thinking”. They say I think too much and too deeply about what they consider to be little things. But what exactly is a little thing? Is lying a little thing? I don’t consider it to be. People have a way of looking at lies in a way that is a lie. Surface level definitions that enable you to live comfortably as a liar without ever acknowledging it. “Who took my money from the table?” If you took it and you say you didn’t….you are a liar. That’s more or less a summary of how lying is viewed. And like I said… this view of lying is a lie in itself. So maybe for the sake of the discussion, I will invite you to “over-think” with me.

I went to a shop with a friend of mine and we bought a few things. There were a few distractions at the counter and we happened to leave with a lot more stuff than we had paid for. We were close to home when we discovered this. Looking at the receipt it was clear that we hadn’t paid for everything. So I decided to go back and return all the stuff. The friend I was with was amazed at my act of stupidity. As far as she was concerned, we didn’t steal the items. We had been given them for free by accident so it was their fault and not ours; so we had the right to keep them. A few years in the past I would have been the first to come up with that line of thought. After all, I didn’t go to the shop with the intention of stealing anything; it was just my luck that I had left with more items than I had paid for. But at this stage of my life… I “over-thought”.

If we had taken the items, and we had not known that we hadn’t paid for them until they were consumed, one might argue that it didn’t matter because we didn’t know. But in this scenario…we knew. The receipt clearly stated what we had paid for and what we hadn’t. As soon as that was noticed, if I had decided to keep the items…… I am a theif. There’s no two ways about it. No sugar coating or trying to make it sound any better than it is. I can’t claim that I didn’t steal those items if I didn’t return them. As soon as the mistake was discovered; I had a choice to lie to myself that it was not stealing…or I could return the items because they did not belong to me. So I went back to the shop and returned the items; much to the disgust of the person I was with. I could see that she thought I was stupid. I could see that she thought I was being way too extreme. But at the end of the day, im not accountable to her or even to the shop where the items came from. I am accountable to my father. He sees my heart. Lying to myself is not going to change the fact that I know the right thing to do.

The issue of self deceit runs deep. You can’t understand it if you only view things on the surface. I constantly ask myself all kinds of questions, and when I look back I’ve always known the answers. A girl invites me over. I know there is no one home for the next few hours. I know the girl thinks I’m cute and wouldn’t mind giving me a taste. But I tell myself nothing will happen. Ill go over, well chill, talk for a while, then im out. Somehow I manage to convince myself that im going with the purest of intentions. She is just a friend; nothing will happen. So I go there, and something happens. Then I tell myself, well I didn’t plan for anything to happen; I just went there to chill. But am I lying to myself? Did I not know what “could” happen if I went there? Can I really say I was unaware if her intentions…even if I had managed to convince myself that mine were innocent?

It runs deep. I have realised that I can never stop being a liar unless I stop lying to myself. If the issue is im ashamed of some of the stuff I do then I shouldn’t be doing it in the first place. I shouldn’t be giving myself reasons and excuses to lie. Not because I want men to label me as honest; but because my father requires me to tell the truth.

The phone rings and my girlfriend is on the line. She asks… “did you miss me?” The truth is we just spoke two hours ago. Between that time ive watched half a film and written four articles. The real answer to the question is no.. I haven’t missed you. But can she handle that level of truth? She hasn’t crossed my mind because ive been busy. There are times when she does cross my mind….but this want one of them. But if I don’t lie to her and say “of course I missed you”; its gonna make her upset, whether she shows it or not. So I tell a lie. Just so I can avoid a conflict. But why should I do that? Is it more important for me to please her…. or to please my father? So what if she gets upset? So what if she gets angry? Is the truth not better than me telling her lies?

It’s almost as though I am expected to lie. Lying makes long explanations shorter. “What do you think of this dress?” “Its ok”. The truth is I have never seen a dress so ugly in my life, but I cant be bothered to wait another hour while she finds another dress and puts it on. The lie saves time and effort; much more practical than telling the truth. But why am I like that? Should I care what people think? Should I care how people react to the truth?

My old man is not the easiest person to talk to. He’s one of those people that if you want to get along with him, you have to develop a thick skin. He has no regard for feelings. He is not tactical or sensitive in his approach. He tells you the cold hard truth. Your choice is to take it or leave it. As a child I hated it. The truth is not the most pleasant thing to hear. Ill never forget the day he looked me in the eye and said: “Femi. I love you; but I don’t like you.” That’s a hard thing to hear from a guy that brought you into the world. At the time I could admit I was probably not the most likeable kid. Always getting into trouble; arguing and fighting. What was there to like? But I still couldn’t get over the fact that he had said that. But since growing up I’ve realised a number of things. Even if everyone in the world lies to me. I can always depend on him to tell me the truth. Leave feelings, emotions and sensitivities aside. When I want to know the truth; my parents would be the first to say it without batting an eyelid. I’ve grown to respect that; because most of the people I know are not like that.

My old man is a tough cookie. When he asks a question, he wants a straight forward answer. Not necessarily an answer that he wants to hear…but an answer that “answers” his question. As a child I was very good at manipulating words. Its easy when you are dealing with people who are liars themselves, cause they often cant tell the difference. The conversation always starts somewhere and ends somewhere else. I was always encouraged to be a lawyer. With him it was never like that though. When he asks a question, he just wants the answer to the question and nothing else. Not an answer that you think he wants to hear; or an answer given in anticipation of the next question. He just wants the answer to the question.

I used to pretend that I didn’t understand the questions. Makes it much easier to lie that way. Unfortunately my stubbornness is somewhat inherited; so that never lasted long. But growing up it taught me something fundamental. Today when I ask people questions and they answer I can see the liars in them. I can see they know what I mean yet choose to ignore it. I can see that even though they have given me an answer…. It really isn’t an answer. Once again my habit of questions is interpreted as “over-thinking”; like im trying to psycho analyse people. The reality is I just want to hear the truth… rather than a statement of what you think I want to hear.

Ive realised that people cant handle the truth. People never look at “what is being said”. They always look at “how” the person is saying it, or possible reasons “why” the person might be saying it; or “who” is saying it.

You tell a guy Paul and Jesus are preaching different messages. You show it to them in black and white. Paul says A. Jesus says B. The discussion changes and the truth is ignored. The question then becomes “who are you to say what you are saying?” “Why are you criticizing the bible?” “Are you more holy than Paul?” All kinds of ridiculous questions that have absolutely nothing to do with the discussion. The question is “are they preaching the same thing?” Forget the tone being used to ask the question….. forget the reasons….forget accents and punctuations…. just deal with the truth that is staring you in the face. Are they the same or are they not?

Most people can’t do it.

That is why Jesus says that those who have ears that hear are blessed. Many people have ears; yet not many people can hear with them.

Most people can’t handle criticism. It took me a long time to be able to see and accept faults in myself. I always had the perfect reasons and defences. Now I know its all a waste of time. The tone of the person doesn’t matter. The age of the person doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter if the person is saying it just to hurt me. What matters is only one question: “is the person saying the truth?” It doesn’t have to be packaged or presented in a way that I will like it. The important issue is “what is being said.”

I’ve lost a lot of friends because of the truth; but maybe the truth is they were never my friends in the first place. I can take a decision today to always say the truth and never look back. I can choose to accept all the consequences it brings. I can choose to be truthful the exact same way I chose to be a liar. I’m not going to let society lie to me by convincing me that I have to lie because I can’t help it. That for me is the biggest lie of all. If I want to tell the truth for the rest of my life, I can, and I will.

 
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Posted by on April 23, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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HOW I MET GOD

I wanna hold your hand

Image by Josep Ma. Rosell via Flickr

Different people meet God at different points in their lives. I met God in a way that can only be described as unexpected. I didn’t get shot and healed like my old man; but nevertherless the incident was relatively dramatic.

I had witnessed a number of things before then; things that are perhaps enough to make most people believe. God had used my old man to heal a woman with sickle cell. There was even an incident where a woman died of an asthma attack and God raised her to life right there in front of me. The evidence of an entity, be it God or not was definitely present, but for me that was about as far as it went.

Like most Christians my relationship with God, if you can call it that, was based on going to church on Sundays and every so often during the week. Not because I wanted to; I had to, simply because that was what my parents were doing.

I didn’t really understand God. I prayed every so often; most of the time asking him for stuff that I wanted; but I never got a response. As far as I was concerned this God wherever he was wasn’t very talkative, either that or he was considerably hard of hearing. I had faith though. I mean what choice did I have? I had witnessed so many miracles that I just couldn’t deny it. You know how it is. You believe, but there’s still that corner of doubt in your mind because God just doesn’t seem to respond. What if it’s all just coincidences? Or luck maybe. Is there really some dude that sits in the sky watching my every move and getting angry each time I commit a sin? What a boring life. Why on earth would God want to spend eternity doing that? Like I said, i lacked understanding.

I hadn’t read the bible. It was a book that was far too big and way too boring. I was more interested in the stories about Samson, David and Goliath etc. Whether or not they were true, they were still fascinating to listen to.

I went to a boarding school where virtually no one believed in God. They asked me all kinds of interesting philosophical questions that I couldn’t answer, like: “Can God make a shoe that is too big for him to wear?” If he could then it meant he is not omnipotent. If he couldn’t that meant he couldn’t do everything. I became confused. I started learning about evolution, the big bang and all kinds of scientific facts that seemed to contradict everything I knew. At the time I believed the bible was the perfect word of God. I know better now though.

I decided I didn’t have time for God. What was the point? The guy doesn’t talk to me. I’m not likely to die anytime soon, so the issue of heaven and hell could be dealt with much later. For now im just going to have fun, then maybe when I’m older ill find out what this God guy was on about.

About 4 years ago an incident happened that completely caught me off guard. My girlfriend at the time was pregnant. I was at a stage in my life where the church would probably have thrown me out and labelled me as the ultimate sinner; you would be surprised that some churches actually do that. I was in a service at the time. Some guy had been invited to do a 3 day talk, and it was the usual routine of following my parents to church. This time it was different though. At the end of the service the guy asked us all to stand up and he started praying; touching people as he walked by. I had been through many services like this before, where I would watch as people convulsed on the floor and were thrown around the room by some force they considered to be God. I could never really determine if it was a lie or not. Some people are pretty good actors. It happened to my parents too though, which was what I couldn’t understand. I knew my parents weren’t lying or pretending; so was all this stuff actually real?

Like I said, I was in one of those services again. We were all standing and praying and the guy leading was walking round and touching everyone in turn. He told us to tell God that we wanted to feel his presence; and for I guess the first time in my life, I told God I wanted to feel his presence, and I meant it.

The guy came and he placed the palm of his hand on my forehead. My eyes were closed. They were closed….but they were moving; completely outside of my control. It’s like I was blinking continuously and rapidly even though my eyes were shut. I felt something moving me backwards slowly. I could feel myself losing balance, so I pushed forward to prevent myself from falling. The guy was touching me way too gently to be pushing me. I couldn’t work out what was happening.

I left the service with only one thing in my mind: “what the hell just happened?” Did I just feel God push me? How could I be sure? Maybe the guy was pushing me and I just didn’t notice; but how could I explain the blinking?

I can’t remember if I slept much that night; but the incident was definitely on my mind. The next day was a continuation of the service, so I decided to go a second time.

The guy was deep. He wasn’t talking about money and how God would bless you and all of that. This dude actually spoke sense. I waited eagerly though for the end of the service. I was hoping for a repeat of the same incident. This time I would be paying close attention to what was going on. Maybe this dude had some subtle way of pushing people without them noticing. That’s what I told myself.

He didn’t walk around touching people this time. He asked us to close our eyes and just focus on God. I didn’t have an image of God as such in my head; but I cleared my mind and consciously thought about God.

It happened again. My eyes were closed and I could feel them blinking again; almost like they were forcing themselves shut continuously, even though they were already closed.

The guy asked us all to open our eyes. Then he said, “if you felt anything, come forward”. I hesitated for a second. What if….? I didn’t allow myself to finish my thought. I went forward.

There were a few other people that came forward as well. He asked me to raise up my hands, and I obeyed lifting them slowly. My eyes were closed. They were still doing the blinking thing, but the intensity was increasing. His hand touched mine; and I quite literally received a shock that changed my life.

It was like I had just touched a naked wire. My entire body was moving of its own accord. It was like electricity was running continuously through my body. I fell to the ground letting go of the man’s hand, but on the floor I was still shaking violently. Like a fish that had just been taken out of water. This happened for about 3 minutes. Then it stopped. I was completely out of breath. It was like I had just finished a long race and I was drained of all my energy. I lay there on the floor for a couple more minutes. I suddenly became conscious that there were other people in the room. I got up, and slowly walked back to my seat, trying not to make eye contact with anyone.

On the way home in the car I just couldn’t stop talking. I couldn’t believe it. This is not “I saw” or “he said” or “she said”. I actually felt him! All of a sudden it dawned on me just how real God was. I just couldn’t comprehend it. I was afraid, but at the same time I was excited. I became a freak. I just couldn’t talk about anything else. I no longer cared about anything else. I just wanted to know about this God more. I was tripped, and I had enough motivation to last me a life time. I drove the girl I was with crazy, I just couldn’t have a normal conversation without bringing up God in some way. All of a sudden I started talking to God, and because I no longer had any doubt of his existence I was constantly on the look out for a response. It became “God showed me this”, “God told me that”; it was enough to irritate anyone.

So I decided to read the bible. They say you can understand God through the bible yeh? So I took a decision that I was going to read it on my own. None of this pastor said nonsense. I needed to find out what it said for myself. What I found out, is a whole other story.

That was 4 years ago. Since then I’ve felt God in a similar way about 15 times. In fact whenever I close my eyes and think about God my eyes keep moving on their own accord. In a way it constantly reminds me that God is with me; but there is a question that always bothers me. If something so dramatic had not happened to me, would I have gone searching for God? It’s a deep question, because when I look back with the knowledge that I have now, I can see how God was constantly trying to get my attention, but so many times I just was not prepared to listen. I was too preoccupied with life to notice. It is a fool that says in his heart that there is no God. I was a fool for the majority of my life; don’t be a fool too.


 
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Posted by on April 20, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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MY LIFE: WATCHING MY MOM GO BLIND, AND MY OLD MAN GET SHOT

My Guns 006

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I’ve gotten to a certain point in my life where the evidence of God is so obvious, that I really don’t have any excuse for doubting. My understanding of God has grown a lot in the past four years. He is no longer a theory or something that I believe in on the level of faith. He is real. 

Sometimes the little mundane things he says and does are easy to overlook when explained to a friend. The dramatic stories are far more interesting. So let me tell you 2 remarkable stories.

A while ago my mom had an operation on her eye; but I’m going to go back to 2 years so you can see the full picture. 2 years ago my mom was in the United States when she got a phone call from an old friend telling her to meet up at a shop called Macey’s. Upon getting there, the woman told my mom that God said she should take her to the opticians in order to get her eyes tested. She told her specifically, “don’t argue with me, just come with me to the opticians, cause God asked me to take you there and pay for the tests”. A bit of a weird thing to hear from a friend she hadn’t seen in years.

Upon getting to the opticians, my mom was tested and it was discovered that she had been given the wrong prescription, and the contacts she was wearing were slowly making her eyes worse. I put the question to you….. Did God really send this woman? Or was it just a coincidence?

Coming back to more recent events, the same woman sent my mom an email. It had only four words: “go to the opticians”. Given the fact that God had used this same woman in the past in relation to my mom’s eyes, she should have recognised that the message was not from the woman, but from God. My mom ignored the instruction. 2 weeks later, she is sitting in her office and there’s an internal explosion in her right eye. A few days after, a black layer like film appeared at the bottom of her eye, impairing her vision. The film kept rising. Realisation struck….she was slowly going blind in her right eye. 


She went to the opticians and was tested with “a scan”. The report was there was nothing to worry about, her vitreous was detached, but her retina was ok. Apparently the retina is the one that needs to be worried about. Anyway, she was prescribed with eye drops and sent home. After a few more days, she decided to seek a second opinion. Another doctor inspected her eye “by hand” and concluded that her “retina” was detached and she needed to have an operation immediately otherwise she was going to turn blind. First in one eye, then the other. Two conflicting diagnosis, one made by a man and the other by a machine…who to believe? The whole time all this is happening, the black layer is rising in her eye. She is losing sight. One thing is certain; something needed to be done fast.

My old man called up the doctor with the conflicting diagnosis, asking why his verdict could be so different from the machines. The doctor was angry, because he felt his authority was being challenged. You must understand that in a country like Nigeria, one has to be careful with doctors. Some have no qualms about diagnosing you wrongly just so you can pay for an operation you really don’t need.

The conversation ended badly. The doctor felt he was being challeneged. My old man felt he lacked empathy….. by the way…..the eye is still getting worse. The film is still rising.

My old man called his personal doctor to find out if he knew of any other eye specialists. He was given a few numbers to call and was able to speak to a guy that was located about 5 hours away in the middle of a place that can only be described as a bush. What makes this particular bush interesting was the fact that it held one of the best eye doctors in the world.

He had been given a grant from the World Health Organisation and had set up an eye hospital in the middle of his village. It contained high tech facilities and all sorts of equipment you would expect to see only in a Tom Cruise movie. The story starts to get interesting.

The doctor noticed our last name….Aribisala. As it turned out, he went to school with my uncle and they were old friends. Coincidence?

Laying aside a long list of minor details; the guy confirmed that she did indeed need to have surgery, and guess what…the previous optician my old man had argued with on the phone…..works for this same guy. Coincidence?

The man called up his employee, stating that he was a friend of my old mans brother and instructed him to conduct the operation bearing in mind the personal connection. The operation was to take place the following day.

The day came and with it came a bill of 540,000 naira that needed to be paid “in cash” before the operation could commence. We didn’t have the money. What do we do? My old man made a call to the doctor that was his brother’s friend, with one request. Can we pay by cheque? You see there is a policy that requires that a payment has to be made in full and in cash. The translation of that is; if we don’t have the money…..my mom is going to go blind.

The doctor makes a phone call and authorizes his employee to accept a cheque. My old man was able to borrow some money, and that was how the operation was paid for.

Let’s take a moment to reflect.

There was an argument with an optician, which led my old man to look for another doctor. The doctor he was led to happened to be his brother’s friend. This guy owns the hospital where the operation was scheduled to take place, and the doctor my old man had argued with works for him. The hospital only collects cash; but because the doctor knows my uncle; he allows us to pay by cheque. Coincidence?

Let’s come to today. My mom’s eyes are fine. They aint just fine. My mom has been wearing glasses since she was a little child. 55 years later…. She is seeing better than she has ever seen in her life.

I said the word coincidence a number of times. I have a habit of doing that these days cause I often wonder just how many so called coincidences it would take to get an average person to see God in a situation. I stopped believing in coincidences when I started to understand God better. Coincidences don’t exist in a believers life. God often creates situations and circumstances, its just a question of if your eyes are open enough to see it, excuse the pun.

What’s interesting is a few days before the operation took place I was having a conversation with my mom about this very subject. Why did God let her go blind? Or did God make her go blind in order to teach her something about him? Sounds like funny questions.

We spoke about this for hours. The conversation started with me saying I was thirsty. No drinks were cold and there was no electricity, you know how we do in Naija. I grumbled about it for a while then we carried on our conversation about coincidences. Do they exist? Or is literally everything orchestrated by God in some way? A few minutes later my old man walked into the room and asked a question out of the blue: “Does anyone want a drink”.

My mom and I burst out laughing for about 5 minutes. My old man thought we were crazy. Here we were talking about whether coincidences existed, and I was thirsty, and basically God used my old man to bring me a drink. He hadn’t heard the conversation. He was just walking in and he wondered if we wanted a drink, after which he produced some cold drinks which he had just bought. Where am I going with this? Ill attempt to put it more in perspective.

Why is God described as a “healer”? Why is he not described as the God who “prevents us from being sick”? There is a fundamental difference between the two. Once we can understand this difference, our perspective of him starts to become a bit clearer. How can you know God as a healer, if you have never been sick? It’s a rhetoric question…..you can’t.

It’s not an easy thing to go through; losing your sight. The whole time you would most likely be saying: “God why me”? “Why would you let this happen to me?” “What have I done to deserve this?” We are very good at that. But we fail to realise that God teaches us a lot about himself through what we conceive to be “bad situations.”

How can you know God as a provider, if you have never lacked anything? How can you know God as a redeemer if you have never lost anything? We don’t ask these questions, because we don’t want to be sick. We don’t want to lose anything and we don’t want to lack anything. Basically…. We don’t want to know God, but we don’t even realise it.

Let me tell you another story; slightly more dramatic than the first. I must have been between 8 and 10 years old. My mom was just coming back from the states, so my old man and I went to pick her up from the airport. On our way home we were attacked by armed robbers. Ill leave out the narrative descriptions and hit the nail on the head. My old man heard a voice that said: “nothing will happen to you”.

We barely knew God at the time. My parents are intellectuals and with most “smart” people the concept of God is something that doesn’t appear to make any sense. But that didn’t change the fact that he heard a voice that wasn’t his own.

After he heard that….he was shot. A bullet went through the door and into his leg. I’m in the back seat, calm as can be; if you can describe screaming my head off as calm. I remember the entire incident quite vividly. One of those things that’s pretty hard to forget. My old man turned around and looked my mom and me in the eye and said: “don’t worry, nothing is going to happen”.

There was about 5 of them, all wielding guns and axes. They smashed the windows, collected the suitcases and a bit of money they found in the glove compartment. One of the robbers asked my old man to step out of the car. That was actually when he realised he was shot. Adrenaline has a way of hiding these things. He told my old man to lie down. He was going to kill him there and then in front of us. My old man said “no”. “You’ve taken everything we have, what more do you want?” I’m not going to lie down”.

The robber looked at him as though he was crazy. He was there holding a gun; telling a man to lie down, and this guy was refusing. For some reason, the robber looked at my old man for like a minute. Then he turned around and walked off signalling to the others. .

We were on a desolate road. Evidently moving cars must have realised there was a robbery in progress so noone came through that way. My mom ran out screaming for help. A lady in a taxi managed to convince the reluctant cab driver to take us to a nearby hospital. Now this is where the story gets interesting.

My old man had a bullet in his leg. The voice he heard told him “nothing was going to happen”. But he got shot. So something happened…..right? Well come back to that question later.

The car was inspected. What was interesting about the car was the fact that it showed a bullet hole that went straight through the door. Where the hole was located showed that my old man should have been hit in the stomach. Yet the bullet was in his leg. What happened? If the bullet had ricocheted or been deflected by an internal bit of metal in the door, the hole wouldn’t have gone straight through; there would have been a hole at the top and one at the bottom. But it did. Coincidence? Luck? Science was at a loss for answers.

My old mans brother happens to be a doctor. An x ray was done and it showed there was a bullet in his leg. His leg needed to be operated on otherwise the bullet would infect it, and it would need to be amputated. My old man heard another strange voice that said: “your leg is healed”.

The last time he heard “nothing will happen to you”…..then he got shot. This time there is a bullet in his leg, and he is told “you are healed”. As stupid as it seemed at the time…He believed the voice.

My uncle is an atheist. He doesn’t believe in God at all. Certainly not when his brother is hearing voices telling him he is healed, and when he can see clearly in an x ray that there is a bullet lodged in his leg! As far as he was concerned, my old man was going crazy, and was probably hallucinating based on the shock of the incident.

“Ok so youre healed right? Let’s do another x ray to confirm it then.” Another x ray was done. The bullet was still in his leg. “Bro, all evidence shows…..you are not healed! You need to have an operation.”

A few days later my mom woke up in the middle of the night. I can only imagine how petrified she must have been, when she saw my old man’s leg moving. It was like it was being massaged by fingers she couldn’t see. She touched his leg and it felt warm and as though an electric current was running through it. That was the only way she could describe it. Another x ray was done….the bullet was no longer in his leg.

My uncle had 3 x rays to look at, all a few days apart. 2 showed my old man had a bullet in his leg; 1 showed there was no bullet. Science was out the window. Only one thing was clear… the leg was healed and no surgery was needed to take out the bullet. He still had crutches; in fact everything about his physical state indicated that he was not healed. Yet; another x ray proved that there was no longer any bullet in his leg. Coincidence?

12 years down the line we still have the x rays. A bullet was never removed from his leg. There is no difference to his walking. He heard a voice that said “nothing will happen to you”, then he got shot. My question today is…. Did anything happen?

You can view different situations in all kinds of ways. But Ill tell you this much. God is not a man. He is not a figment of your imagination. As a result he requires a different level of understanding. I don’t know anything about you or your experiences; or reasons why you feel God may or may not exist. But I cannot deny what I have seen and felt in my life. Perhaps sharing the little I know with you will give insight into certain things that might be more obvious than you think. God is real. At times he is more dramatic than others. God shows himself to people every single day. Its just that people like my old man needed to be shot in order to see him. It does not have to be that way. Maybe as I continue to share with you my life’s stories; it will shed more light as to why I believe in him.

 
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Posted by on April 20, 2011 in TRUTH

 

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