Itohan left the bed to hug Cindy.
“God’s word says. I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy on. It is by the mercy of God that you are not consumed” Iya Folake said.
“My daughter, thank God for your life. The right time to give your life to Jesus is now”
“Beeni” Iya said.
Cindy went on her knees in tears.
” I want to do the right thing. God gave me a second chance and I won’t abuse it. I won’t mess up again”
Iya Folake led her to Christ and began to preach to her.
“Your parents dey come here tomorrow” Itohan announced.
Cindy screamed jubilantly.
“How did you locate them?she asked and Itohan narrated everything.
“I have not been a good child to them” She said regrettably.
“Don’t worry, all that has changed now” Iya Folake said patting her shoulder.
Iya Folake stayed with them for a while, then took her leave. When everyone had gone to bed, Itohan sat on the bed and began to pray.
“As you show Cindy mercy, Baba show me mercy too. The thing wey block Nosa eyes, wey make am no remember me and the children again, Osanobua (God) remove am”
Itohan prayed like a wounded woman. Even when her baby woke, she carried the child, breastfed, then she returned to her prayers. She only slept a little before she woke to start her business.
She was cheerful as she attended to her customers.
By the time Cindy’s parents and Osadebamwen came, she had returned from the market.
It was a happy reunion for Cindy and her parents. Her parents kept hugging and crying. At a glance, Itohan could see they were christians. They began to sing and dance. When they had exhausted themselves, they sat on the seats Itohan offered them.
Osadebamwen sat beside her mother on the bed. Cindy knelt before her parents and cried.
“It’s all my fault. I have never listened to you. I have never been satisfied by what you provided me. If not for the saving grace of God, I would have been a dead meat”
Mr and Mrs Igiebor listened in awe as Cindy narrated everything to them.
“Thank you Jesus that you didn’t allow me to weep over the only child you gave me” Mr Igiebor said wiping tears from his eyes. “Jesus I called you and you answered. You went ahead to rescue my child. Ooh what a loving father you are”
The Igiebor’s kept thanking Itohan for showing kindness to their daughter. Itohan led them to Iya Folake, who received them delightedly.
“I hope you know what God has done for you? Cindy is now a child of God. Her name is already in the book of life” iya said smiling.
Iya Folake opened the door for Cindy’s parents to spend the night.
The next morning, they returned to Port – Harcourt with Cindy. They didn’t leave without giving Osas money to return to school.
The days went by, but Nicole was restless. She wanted to get married to Nosa. Since she had succeeded to tie him down, there is nothing stopping her from getting married to him, yet Nosa doesn’t show excitement.
“Could it be that Itohan is manipulating him?” She asked herself.
She remembered her mother saying that Itohan is more powerful than the native doctor she went to consult. It’s high time she started thinking of how to remove Itohan from the way. Nicole sat up and woke Nosa up
“I need to discuss something oo”
“Go on!” He said sitting up too.
“It’s about our marriage. When are you going to see my parents”
“I don’t know”
Nicole landed him a terrible slap.
“What do you mean by that? Do you know how many times you have postponed it?”
She looked angrily at Nosa who rubbed his face where the slap landed.
“Three days from now, we are going to see my family. You will tell them you want to marry me. Everything needed for the journey, I will provide. I will give you enough money to lavish on them”
“I am sorry for the slap” She said kissing the spot she slapped him.
Tomorrow I will go out to buy the things needed for the travel.
“You can go back to sleep” she ordered.
As soon as Nosa’s back touched the bed, he slept off and snored lightly.
Three days later Nosa and Nicole travelled to Benin to see Nicole’s parents. The family pretended not to notice that there was no family member with Nosa to ask for their daughter’s hand in marriage. Nosa was handed the list of requirements. Nicole fixed a date when Nosa would return to marry her. The family was happy and satisfied.
They returned to Lagos and printed invitation cards which she distributed to family and friends.
She started shopping. Everything she bought was of high quality. Nicole was happy indeed for all her plans are working in her favour.
Cindy returned with her parents and things have returned to normal. Though Itohan missed her but she was glad she regained her memory and she had reunited with her parents.
Itohan’s business was booming. She employed a helping hand to assist her in the business. Itohan extended her sales till evening. She was so busy that she had no time to pray as usual.
The moment her body touches the bed, she sleeps till it’s time for business. When Efosa wakes her up for prayers, she complains she had only slept for a moment. Efosa would pray without her. It got to a time, he no longer bothers to wake her up.
Spiritually, she was disconnected. She would have nightmares, rather than pray and cancel it, Itohan would promise to do it later. At the end, she would forget about the dream.
It was Sunday evening, Iya Folake sat with her outside and they were gisting.
“You have not been attending church” Iya Folake told her.
“Na business. E no easy”
“The bible says do not forsake the gathering of the brethren”
“When last did you pray?”
“I no lie for you. E don tay oo. Na tiredness oo” She said mischievously.
Iya Folake shook her head sadly.
“Iya Efosa, you need to wake up. I told you the other time that the weapon of our welfare are not carnal but might through the pulling down of stronghold”
“Personally, I am not happy that your husband is with another woman. That’s not the plan of God for you concerning you marriage. You must stand up, not just to fight this battle but to win it”
“I dey fight na”
“But you can’t be in the battle today and out tomorrow when you have not attain victory. No one goes into the battle and turns his/her back or he/she will be hit. Your husband is held captive. He is in spiritual prison and needs to be free. You can’t be hot today and cold tomorrow. Every true child of God must always be hot. Very hot. You and your children need your husband”
“I miss am”
“If you do, then fight for him. Not physical fight because it will do you no good”
“That woman get money and she fit lock me up sef”
“Be wise Iya Efosa. Win your battle on your knees”
She thanked Iya Folake for always pushing her to do the right thing. Iya Folake left but Itohan still sat there. Her thought dwelt on her husband and she began to cry silently.
Sometimes she has the urge to pray for him Other times she remembers the things he did to her and she refuse to pray for him.
Then she told herself to wake up.
Like Iya Folake said, she was going to fight the battle on her knees until victory become hers. She wiped her tears and smiled.
“Nosa, you must return to me. I don make up my mind oo. Na me be your wife. No other woman fit take my place for your life” She said.
Since that time, Itohan began to take prayer seriously. Whether she was cooking, bathing or selling, she was praying silently for her husband. Once in a week, she engages in fasting and it really helped her. Itohan though did not complete secondary school education, she could read a little. She reads the bible and where she finds any difficult word, she would draw the attention of her son. So, her spiritual life began to grow and she waxed stronger in the Lord.
To Be Continued… . . .
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