Last year, my brother, Godwin Oluwadurotim, a former Travelling Secretary of the Scripture Union, posted in the WhatsApp, how his neighbour had written a book, titled: ‘How To Make Money’, but he could not publish it because of lack of money. He advised the author to read his manuscript. His advice made much sense to me. As Uncle, in his book, is trying to teach us how we can be making money, he should have taught himself first, before teaching us.
I will not buy a book, ‘The Principles of Living in Peace with Your Spouse’, if the author is still single. I know, and I do not need anybody to tell me, that it is nothing but a book full of imaginations on marriage. I will not buy also a book on marriage, if the author is a divorcee, unless I want to learn
How to divorce my wife. In my village, in those days, there was a man, who could be seen as nice, but anytime the elders gathered to resolve any marriage issue between a couple and he came to join them, he was told politely to leave. The reason was that he was not living in peace with his wife.
It beats my imagination, why a young wife should be going to a divorced woman or who is not having it easy with her husband, to be reporting the wrong things her husband does to her. I wonder the type of advice she expects to be receiving! Will such a woman teach her tolerance towards her spouse? Will she teach her submission to him? Will she not teach her to be behaving like her, which may be the cause of their problem? Can a man give what he does not have?
One can presume that before Uncle wrote the book, ‘How To Make Money’, he must have been rich, and has testified the ways and means he used in making his money.
He might have also made sound researches on the methods employed by his fellow wealthy people in making theirs and that he had tested them and seen that they are all working. It is absurd, if he still lacks money, even the small amount to print his book. Should not his readers assume that he wrote the book out of magnanimity, so as to extend the largesse to the public? As it is, any book written by him can be on any topic, but not on how to make money, as the facts do not justify that he knows.
I am surprised that some people troop into the shrines of native doctors for charms to be rich. It does not make any sense to me, how they will believe that a man, living in a squalid environment, and struggling to live, can prepare such charms for them, when he has not prepared one for himself. Does he not want to be rich? Does he love other people more than he loves himself?
I wrote in this column many years ago, how a man went to a native doctor for fortification, so that bullets would not penetrate into his body. The native doctor prepared the charm and assured him that no bullet from any gun would enter the body of any man that wore it. Uncle, like Shakespeare, would not believe in a mad man until he saw his brain, brought out his short gun and requested the native doctor to wear his charm while he would test the efficacy of the charm by pulling the trigger. Uncle native doctor could not buy that. In rage, he took his charm and told his client to leave his shrine.
The same problem is in the Prayer Houses. There, the ‘man of God’ may be telling his flock the wonderful things God will do for them, if they will fast for a number of days. Visitors to the Church will be told what God will do for them, if they will join the Church. If you make out time to come close to the ‘man of God’, you will notice that things are not easy with him. He may be struggling to feed his family. His children may have been also driven away from school because of school fees. You begin to wonder why he is very far away from the goodies he is offering. Your guess is okay that the bulk of their membership may not be drawn from the people, who may reason in this manner.
The Lord Jesus did not write a book on how to walk on the sea or on the principles of healing. His disciples saw Him walking on the sea and Peter desired to do the same and He encouraged him. And he did! The Lord Jesus went about healing the sick and even raised Lazarus, who was dead and buried. He did not stay in a cozy office, sending out His disciples out on evangelism, He was the One that led them, day and night, and identified with them in every aspect of the ministry. His disciples followed the same pattern, when He had gone back to Heaven, to prepare our eternal dwelling place. Like Him, they were in forefront of the ministry and did not subject people to any task that they were not doing.
Imagine a State Governor telling his people that Nigerian Universities are by far better than the foreign ones while everybody knows that all his children are studying abroad and that he studied abroad too! He can only make impact on children in the kindergarten class, but not on adults like me. I know a man, my brother, Rev. Engineer Echi Nwogu, whose dad sent all his children to study abroad but he refused to go with them. He rather chose to read in University of Nigeria. I can listen to him, and people like him, any day and time, they place Nigerian Universities above their foreign counterparts.
Imagine a tailor, who wears foreign suits, advertising his business, and brags that his suits are better than the imported ones. Anyone can be fooled, not me until he convinces me why he wears the bad ones – imported ones – instead of his!
It is possible that my Pastor may be spending quality time, all the time, telling us why we should live right so that we will make Heaven, but it is obvious to most of us that his lifestyle is far from the Heaven he talks about. I will not follow his sinful ways of life because the Bible is clear on the implication of doing that. I may leave and go to another Church, where the Pastor’s life does not contradict his word. I may decide not to leave the Church, but to start praying for the Pastor, without criticizing him openly. I may also meet him for private discussions on his awful lifestyle.
Seeking direction on what to do on the matter is very important, but what is common, which is not right, is to constitute a ‘Church’ in the Church. An Uncle, will thus, gather some members that are in agreement with him on the Pastor’s misbehaviour. He uses them to form his Church in that Church before they will leave on a slight provocation.
For further comment, Please contact: Osondu Anyalechi: 0802 3002-471; [email protected]