Save Me! episode 16

By Ikumawoyi Toluwalase

Cover: "Save Me!"

 

Episode sixteen

 
Wounds from a sincere friend
Are better than many kisses from an enemy
The heartfelt counsel of a friend
is as sweet as perfume and incense……

-Proverbs 27:6,9

“What are doing here all alone?” John asked Joseph as he walked into the hut. Joseph had been discharged from the hospital for over a week. John brought him home to stay with him instead of the accommodation provided for him by his employer. He couldn’t let his friend off quickly…
“Just wanted to be alone.” Joseph said, as his friend sat on one of the seat in the hut.
“Still running away from James right?” John said stating the obvious.
Joseph looked away. His issue with James was not even an issue he wanted to deal with at the moment, he knew he still could’ve forgiven him for his actions, though he was still thinking about it, he definitely didn’t know where to start…
“The sky is cloudy right…? And it seems like it wants to rain.” Joseph said trying to bring his friend’s attention back to the present
“John, you won’t understand.” Joseph quickly replied, he knew his friend had a knack for playing with words.
“The fact that it is cloudy does not mean it will rain you know?” John said, not minding his friend… He was going somewhere with his word and he needed to hit it home..
“I don’t think I can forgive him right now, I don’t think I am ready to forgive anyone.” Joseph said, standing up. He certainly knew what his heart was saying but he wanted to hold on to the hurt and pain. That was what made him the man he was right now. His ability to hide his pain too well,
“You certainly are not human…!!” John quickly said sarcastically, then he added “To err his human forgiveness is divine…that word itself is not just an English adage. Going through the scripture, I discovered that forgiveness is something that comes natural as a spirit being, Jossy I know you can do it.”
“Why haven’t I seen Jadesola? She never showed up after the first day I woke up at the hospital.” Joseph said trying to change the topic, he knew John was right, he needed to forgive his friends, but that would take him a lot of energy and he certainly was not emotionally prepared.
“Have you tried calling her?” John asked smiling. This conversation is not going anywhere. Joseph was playing hide and seek with him.
“I don’t have her number, and I don’t think I can call her yet…I was just asking.” Joseph said as he returned back to his former seat
“Erhmm Jossy…can I ask you a very funny question?” John finally said breaking the three minutes silence.
“Am all ears.” he knew John would not back out so easily. He was ready to scream at him if he continued with the forgiveness topic. He was not a baby to be lectured about forgiving others, even if he is struggling to stand, he still knew the right thing to do. All he was saying was they should give him some time.
“Why are you not fixing this?” John said staring at his friend, who didn’t seem to understand John’s question. “I mean the Joseph I know never stays in this kind of mess, he would have fixed it, he is good at fixing other people’s problems, he is the best counsellor I know, yet I wonder why when you had your own issue, you couldn’t fix it. The damage itself is not even beyond repairs. All its needs is just little patching and fixing.” John quickly added, to buttress his point.
“You don’t know me John!! And trust me, you certainly don’t understand this situation…What am I even saying, how will you understand it? When you had a perfect life, everything went well for you bro.” Joseph said almost angrily. His friend was getting on his nerves by reminding him of who he was…
“Nice point Joseph. My life seems perfect. But you know too well, that you don’t judge a book by its cover…” he said clapping his hands, he stood up and walked up to his friend and stood in front of him…
“You are missing the point here. You can’t fix or repair your life on your own, you can’t go on getting angry at everyone. It creates more hurt and pain within you… And am certainly not a repairman, but you know too well who can. You told me once when we were in school…”Come unto me all ye that are depressed,and heavy laden and I will give you rest”…your own mode of rephrase the scripture. Why don’t you start by repairing the broken bridge between you and the father. That way you can fix every other part of your life, cos you won’t be doing it alone. I know Jesus is more than interested in your life right now. Try letting him in, try talking to him.” John said as each of his words created more blows on his friend. He stood up and made his way to the entrance…
“Tomorrow is Sunday…I would want you to go to church with me.” John said to his friend as he got to the door. Joseph’s head was bent. John knew he was in deep thought but he needed him to face the truth. He was experienced in the matter of forgiveness. It came easy for him, and he was sure his friend could get through it if he allowed the solution..

“Yes, I know the way out, but…how do I start? Its been close to six years we have had a conversation last. Oh God if you can still hear me, I need your help desperately.” he thought deep as he bent his head…

“Holy Spirit help me out here!” John said inwardly. Right in his hands was a sack letter. His boss, a lady he had refused to have an affair with had just given him a sack letter…
“John you are not a baby, you understand what am asking for.” Mrs Okanlawon said to him. She had invited him to a restaurant close to their office for lunch. John honored the invitation thinking it was an important matter, and secondly he would use the opportunity to introduce the person of Christ to her…
“Erhmm. Ma. I don’t seem to understand everything you are saying just yet.” John said, still recovering from the shocking proposal his boss made to him. She asked him to create a fake budget. The money from the fake budget would be diverted to a different account….
“C’mon, okay I know what I will do, let’s do it this way, we will share the money 40:60. I will be topping your own share with some more money.” she replied placing her hand on his thigh. John quickly adjusted himself understanding very well what she was implying…
The last accountant had hinted him when he was leaving that she was a flirt, and prayed that she never casts her glance on him. As fate would have it his prayer never passed the roof of the company, because as soon as he resumed his duty as the new accountant. She had made it mandatory for him to report to her office once in two days…now!! She had not just made a pass at him but had also asked him to breach the company’s policy by siphoning money for her, despite being the chairman’s wife…
“I don’t think I can do this and sin against God… Moreso, it would be sheer wicked on my part.” John said standing to his feet, he was done with the nonsense he was seeing before him. She just couldn’t keep her hands off him. She kept touching him in sensitive parts of his body…
“Your job might be at risk John. Would you sacrifice your huge salary for this little compromise?” she said trying to shake him a little bit and also remind him that she was his boss.
“Is this all you can do, sack me? And then get another guy to do your dirty work. Ma’am you need a new life. Have you ever imagined what would happen if I was caught? Have you ever thought of how life would be without all these money and power. Think about it ma’am…” John said, as he walked up to the door, leaving her staring at him. The sack letter was to scare him to do her bidding. She had thought he would run to her office and beg her, but he had walked in boldly and shook her conscience with truthful words…
“Now where do I start from? John said to himself as he drove his car along the streets of Lagos. He had spent close to five months searching for a job before he got this one, now he was sacked, would he go searching again…
“Son, Joseph gave up five minutes enjoyment for a life that lasted forever.” John looked beside him, he heard the voice, he clearly heard the voice.
“Ok am all ears lord.” John said in a whisper as he searched for a place to park his car beside the road.
“All things works together for good to them that love God and are called according to his purpose.” the voice said to him again, John relaxed, he knew it was the Holy Spirit. “I know the thoughts I have towards you, the thoughts of peace and not of evil to give you hope and everlasting future.” John knew those parts of the scripture too well. They were his anchor words when the devil wanted to strike at him using doubts…
“Thanks Holy Spirit. I will be at rest, though I will starting searching, but I believe there is something better than this for me out there.” he said, as he ignited his car and drove to his apartment…
“Hello dad…this weekend…That’s tomorrow naaaa.. Okay. I will come over…No am not busy. I will explain to you when I get home.” he dropped his call. His dad had called him immediately he got to his apartment, the old man wanted him to come over to Ondo to spend the weekend with him. John was happy. At least he would be able to talk to his mentor who was also his biological father. He took after the man in wisdom, career except in appearance though when he was a kid, he had always thought about it, he was the only one in the house who had a dark complexion. His two siblings, Dotun and Tade were very fair in complexion so also was his dad and mum, but seeing his grandmother at his grandfather’s burial made him let go of the thought that he was not a part of the family. His grandmother was also dark in complexion…
“Good evening dad.” John greeted his dad as he walked up to the handsome though old man sitting on a plastic chair with a bottle of wine on the plastic table in front of him. He loved to relax at the back of his house every evening especially on weekends. As soon as John arrived, he knew where to find him…
“Hello son, how was your trip? I didn’t hear the sound of your car.” he said, as he patted his son who was prostrating to greet him.
“I didn’t come with my car.. I boarded the public transport. Hmmh, old papa you are looking fresh and handsome ohh. You don’t want to age a bit at all.” John said as he stood to his feet smiling at his father and even made an attempt to hit him playfully. If a stranger walked in on the duo. They could be mistaken for brothers. Their relationship was unique…
“Dad, I want to go inside and change into something light and am hungry. I need some home cooked food.” Joseph said to his dad who laughed as he said home cooked food…
As soon as John got into the house he went to the kitchen and prepared a meal of rice and stew for himself, before going to his room to relax. Fifteen minutes later, he had a sudden urge to study the scripture. So he picked his journal. He was just opening through it when his eyes fell on a message he had preached. “Jesus type of forgiveness.” he smiled as he remembered the day he preached the message, the various questions he was asked. Just then the Holy Spirit spoke to him. “Do you know a message is easily preached than being done…would you forgive anyone for the worst pain they might inflict on you, even if its someone you love so much?” the question in his heart made him thought hard… “Forgiveness is his nature as a spirit being, so it shouldn’t be hard for him.” he concluded.
“He is inside…but have not ….” Mr Collins was telling his visitors when John walked into the sitting room, he didn’t know his dad had visitors. But his entry had made the man stop his words and seeing the visitors he turned back to excuse himself…
“Erhm John please come and have your seat, I was just about to call for you.” Mr Collins said. John sat on one of the sofas, but his eyes were fixed on the couple sitting in front if him. The man looked so familiar…
“Son.. Hmmmh!” Mr John said after the silence, he took a deep sigh and continued. “I want to tell you a story and I believe you are a mature man, so even before the completion of my story you might understand what the story is about.” Mr Collins said, facing John and adjusting himself before he continued…”You see, about 25 years ago, a man and his wife were coming from a vigil when they met a little baby probably a week old at their door, they couldn’t decipher who dropped the baby at their door, so they took him in, a cute little boy, they waited for two days maybe anyone would come and claim him, but no one came, so they went to the police station to make complains, after which they officially adopted him since they had not had any child of their own… 24 years after, the mother of the baby showed up with her husband, weeping and crying, she had traced the couple and found where they were living and she wanted to meet her son.” Mr Collins said feeling uncomfortable as he moved on to the next sentence…
“Son!! You are that cute little boy and here sitting before you are your real parents.” Mr Collins said knowing the weight of his words. He cleaned his already teary eyes as he waited for John to say something…
“25 years and…” he stood up and walked to the window with tears flowing down his eyes… He was adopted, all his life till now, he was living a fake life, a life based on lies, no wonder he didn’t resemble anyone in the family…. No wonder he resembled the man sitting in front of him…. No wonder, they felt familiar… What should he say?… Haaa!! The Holy Spirit is really a great partner, he had hinted him ahead, prepared him for what was coming… He had no choice… He must forgive and move on.” John thought as he stood backing them as they all awaited him…
“Errhm John, I know as a mother I failed you… I was scared and young, your father was just a Corper who came to serve in our town, and I didn’t know what to do…” the woman who was supposed to be his real mother spoke up amidst tears…
“I know we can’t make for the years we have abandoned you. All we ask for is your forgiveness.” the man spoke up… His voice was firm…
“Well…I forgive you all.” John said smiling as he turned back to face them shocking them with his response. They were expecting an outburst. But he was much relaxed and calm…
“No matter your excuses, it doesn’t justify what you have done, but who would have known, if you had kept me, I wouldn’t have been raised by my dad, I might not have been an accountant. Infact…the past is gone.. I believe God saw this coming before orchestrating everything to be like this. So let just forget the past and move on with the present.” John said as he moved towards them opening his arms for a hug….
“Woaw… This is the most mature person have ever met in my life.” Mr Collins exclaimed… As his son, adopted son to be precise walked up to him smiling
“Well thanks to the Holy Spirit who hinted me ahead and got me prepared and also for your awesome teaching. I couldn’t have asked for a better father.” he replied his adopted father …
Well just like the Holy Spirit had said, the meeting ended on a more soothing note, as John got another surprise, his real father was the owner of one the best accounting firms in Lagos, while they were gisting John had mentioned his unemployment, and his various job hunt.. And the man had offered him a better job.. To be the chairman of his own company.. Anyway, either he wanted the company or not.. It belonged to him. Because he was their only child. The couple couldn’t conceive… That was how he moved from being an employee to being an employer…
“God’s will is indeed perfect. Obedience is better than sacrifice.” John finally said as he sat on his chair on his first day at work.

To be continued…

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