As I lay on my bed in the early hours of today, the tears continued to pour steadily and uncontrollably. From the side of my eyes they found their way into my ears. I’d use my hands to wipe them, and they’d start pouring again. This has never happened to me. What is the matter?
The more I tried to check what was happening to me, the more the tears kept pouring. Maybe I brought this upon myself. Who sent me to Jane Akwani’s Facebook wall to read her one-sentence analysis of each of Buhari’s ministers? What took me to Professor Pius Adesanmi’s wall to read his short but brutal thought on a prayer point he found on RCCG’s Twitter handle? Prof Adesanmi is not used to writing short pieces, but this one was really short, and yet so brutally true. I thought to myself: If I hadn’t gone to Facebook that early morning, perhaps my sanity would have remained intact.
I will not be the one to tell you what Jane wrote about each of Buhari’s ministers. Go to her Facebook page and read it up yourself. Even the ministers themselves will find it hard disagreeing with her. About Prof Adesanmi’s post, I will give you just the summary, but still go to his Facebook page and get the real stuff. He started his short piece with this prayer point tweeted by Pastor Enoch Adeboye’s RCCG:
“Any relative or anyone blocking your way, if they don’t repent, they won’t see the New Year.”
Yes, you can go and check! That is what Nigerian Christian church is wishing people. Prof Adesanmi advised: When you get to church today, look at the front rows where thieves and looters are given VIP seats and protocol treatment, you will see the people blocking your progress. Start hating and cursing them, but leave your relatives and witches in the village out of it. Your real enemies are those who sit on the front rows of your church.
You can ask yourself how we got to this point in our nation where religion has been so bastardised, where big public thieves are ushered with fanfare and pageantry to the front seats in the synagogues because they pay their tithes in millions and keep the pastors and priests well-taken care of in their churches. The pastor recognises him and prays for him that all will be well.
Then you say you don’t know who your real enemy is? You must be an idiot! You’re the greatest enemy of yourself. Receive common sense! So, if you want to throw stones and hurl curses, leave the poor, old wretched-looking grandmother in your village. Your witches and wizards are in the front pews of the church. Start throwing the stones from there. But I know that many Christians love that religion of vilification, so they will be blind to the truth. They will continue to shout, ‘Holy Ghost fire destroy them! Holy Ghost fire consume them! All my enemies in the village who want to stop my progress die by fire!’
The first time the Holy Ghost came in the form of tongues of fire was on Pentecost Day. I can bet you, the fire did not consume anyone like its being prayed now in Nigerian Christianity. It was a fire of purification that cleansed the hearts and minds of the Apostles and gave them courage, power, authority and enlightenment to minister in the Name of Jesus.
In his sermon on Pentecost Day, Peter the head of the Apostles spoke out and invited those who killed Jesus to repent. He did not invoke death and destruction on them. He rather presented them the Good News of salvation. Behold, 3000 people became Christians that day (see Acts 2:1-41). How Nigerian Christians succeeded in turning this holy fire of purification into a ‘fire for fire’ spiritual battle of conjuring death and destruction on their enemies is what still baffles me today.
Religion has so groomed and programmed us today to become collective children of anger, hate, retribution, bile vituperation and verbal spiritual assault.’ In the name of prayer, all that comes out of our mouths are death wishes to imaginary enemies.