His name was Malik. I don’t know his whereabouts now. I remember that we were co-tenants at No. 27c, Sector 15 in Chandigarh during my school days at Panjab University.
What I found interesting in Malik was his easy going nature. Nothing fazed Malik. He was not rich, just a middle class Indian with a young wife and little daughter.
However, regardless of the struggles, Malik remained happy, always. He was chirpy and a fast talker.
Anyway, I remember Malik because of what came to my mind that I now write about.
It was from Malik that I got the full realisation that life is not as important as we make it. He made me know that man expires. Whenever anyone died and he felt I should know, Malik would tell me that so and so had expired.
The first time he did, it jolted me. Expired; how come?
In the course of time, I realised that truly men expire. Like a product on the shelf we all have expiry dates.
Then I began to ask, who determines the expiry dates? The manufacturer of a product, of course; he fixes its expiry date. It then means that the day you are formed in the womb, the one who causes mere blood to become you attaches your expiry date. You have a day of manufacture, and the day you expire is affixed to your destiny.
In the factory, some products get spoilt and are thrown away, just like miscarriages occur in pregnancy. However, if you scale through and are rolled out of the factory store as a finished product, like a newborn baby, your expiry date is affixed on you.
Ironically, poor miserable men that we are, we are most ignorant of this and so we swagger and float like a bloated balloon until the unexpected happens.
You have no say in your packaging…Why would you be born on a particular day or circumstance? Did you tell God to make you tall or short? Did you ask Him to make you African, Caucasian or Asian? Did you implore Him to send you to Afghanistan, Nigeria or America? Did you come with riches… Did you have a say whether to be a child of a pauper, Dangote or Buhari, in influence or affluence? No, you had no say and God did not have to consult you anyway.
The product on the shelf is well cared for until it is sold or used up, otherwise it could fall and break. That is why some lives are wasted because of carelessness.
How well have you cared for your life on the shelf; have you allowed the devil to push you off the shelf; is that why your life is mangled?
The truth of life is that we begin to die the day we are born. We never grow backwards, as we approach our expiry date. That’s why we never get younger but older.
Don’t be deceived by the cosmetic and futile attempts we make towards youthfulness. Many have died in the process of defeating nature by enlarging their breasts and buttocks or phallus.
Indeed, it is good to take care of ourselves but thinking that our efforts would make a sixty year old become forty is an illusion.
We maintain our cars but how about our soul, our nonperishable real essence?
Many have wandered away from their Creator in pursuit of fleeting pleasure in the toxic garden of the evil one. Many more get burnt in this meaningless quest.
This is hoping that reasonableness is stirred to the consciousness that all is vain when Christ is not in it.
Many of us are just like Manasseh, who heeded not the voice of the Lord:
“And the Lord spoke to Manasseh and his people but they ignored all His warnings. So the Lord sent the Assyrian army and they took Manasseh prisoner, they put a ring through his nose and sold him in bronze chain and led him away to Babylon, but while in great distress Manasseh sought the Lord his God and cried out to the God of his ancestors… the Lord listened to him and was moved by his request for help, so the Lord let Manasseh return to Jerusalem” (2 Chron. 33:12-14).
Manasseh, as you journey towards your expiry date, there is yet time to detour. Many fake products are on the shelf; some with doctored expiry dates. But, Manasseh, your Maker still has the second, minute, hours of your creation on record.
No matter your pretentious dance on the floor of polluted assembly of men; no matter how many soiled hands you lift in the false praise to God who knows you not; no matter the gyrations of prophecy and speaking in tongue, dear Manasseh, the hour fast approaches when the angry Lord shall place an inescapable demand in your soul.
What shall your account be, dear Manasseh? Will it be in deficit or balanced? Will the Lord usher you into rest or send you to burn like firewood in the unquenchable furnace meant for Satan and his lieutenants?
Well, Brother Manasseh, don’t demand from life what you want. Sister, Manasseh, your life should actually consist of what pleasure the Lord derives from you.
Have you ever seen anyone who truly benefited from the devil? Why remain in the slave market when the prizeless blood of the Lamb can wash you clean and buy you back?
Don’t delay anymore. NOW is of essence; you never know what or who’s next in our famished land encircled by the daredevilry merchants of death.
The sinner dies, and the saints too. The poor dies, and the rich too. Even death shall die, and then the real death or life begins hereafter. Give it a thought because it’s all about the choice you make.