… to Sunset in Galicia, Espana.

... to Sunset in Galicia, Espana.

Got this picture from a dear friend, it’s his silhouette against the Sunset in Galicia, Spain.

So for today, we have:

‘From Sunrise in Texas to Sunset in Galicia, the Lord’s name shall be praised!’

Praise the Lord all his saints!

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From Sunrise in Texas…

From Sunrise in Texas...

My sister took this picture of a colourful hot air balloon in the glorious morning sunrise on her way to work in Texas.

I get very emotional when I watch the Sunrise and the Sunset. The view of the beautiful golden rays of the Sunset cast on nature is simply breathtaking. Oh my God!

I remember vividly the golden yellowness of the Sun as it cast its rays on the green vegetation behind the female hostel way back in my secondary school! I remember with relish the majestic beauty of the early morning sunshine as seen from the windows of my room in Manuwa hall, during my days at the University. I would wake up in the mornings, raise the curtains and burst into worship. It was simply beautiful.

My secondary school is situated on a hill, overlooking green vegetation. I would stand for minutes in the evening on my way to the dining hall watching the Sun go down. Some days, I would sing this song with some lyrics from on Psalm 113:3;

‘From where the Sun rises, even to the place it goes down, we are giving you praise, giving you praise. From sun-kissed Islands, even to the place gold wind blows, we are giving you praise, we are giving you praise.’

Wow! So seeing this picture brought back so many memories. I’ve watched the Sun set in several places; at the beach, from the balcony in my parents’ home, from the topmost apartment in my parents’ country home, riding on top of the Third Mainland bridge, at the waterside of the Slave History Museum in Calabar and most recently from the balcony in my home. Oh! What beauty, what majestic splendor!

The Lord is good and worthy of praise!

Take some time this week to watch the Sun rise or set and spend some minutes praising God. I would love to have a picture of your sunset story, please mail it to me at thestorytela@gmail.com. Do include your location so that we can write our own version of Psalm 113:3. For now, my version would be:

“From Sunrise in Texas to Sunset in Lagos, the Lord’s name shall be praised”

Glorrrrryyyyyyyy!

And my journey began…

Image‘Obi, you would be directing our Drama group for the Shiloh Theatre Interfaculty Drama Competition’. Uche said casually as we greeted ourselves in front of the Kenneth Dike Male hostel. I stared at him like he was kidding. ‘I’m sorry, I can’t. My hands are full at the moment’ I replied without even thinking twice.

 ‘But you were the person that handled it last year’, he said. ‘Me? Definitely not’. I answered

I had only acted in the last year’s competition and my drama group; the Christian Association of Business Students (CABS) Drama group had come last. I was later informed that we had come last for three consecutive times and sincerely, I was not willing to be a part of the ‘last coming’ again, besides that I already had my hands full. In addition to being a 3rd year Accounting Student in the University of Nigeria Enugu Campus, I was also doing part time French Studies at the Alliance Française (French Cultural Centre), also I was the General Secretary of my fellowship (Nigeria Fellowship of Evangelical Students- NIFES) and I also belonged to the Prayer Group and the Drama Group. I barely even had time for myself.

‘Well, when I got the letter inviting us for this competition, I started praying about it and the Holy Spirit brought your name to my mind’, Uche, the CABS President continued.

Ah! He had me there! I stared at him as he smiled, showing off his entire pearly white 32. I thought for a moment, all my excuses seemed to have evaporated. Why on earth did he have to bring the Holy Ghost into this matter? I thought to myself

‘Actually, I do not have time for rehearsals. If this competition is in two weeks, we ought to have started rehearsing long ago, we can’t just go there and fail again’ I quipped, hoping he would change his mind about having us compete.

Instead, he went along to tell a long story on how the CABS week had clashed with the initial date fixed for the competition and how that he had decided that we would not compete only for them to write him telling him that the date of the competition had been changed to accommodate us and having thought about it and prayed about it, he would want us to compete.

‘Okay then, if you insist. I’m not promising anything but I’ll try my best.

I walked away with my shoulders slightly lower than before, like one more weight has literally been added to the load I was already carrying. Later that night, I sat on the only study table in my supposedly three man room with six occupants in Manuwa hall and prayed a simple prayer. I told the Holy Spirit that since he wanted me to direct the drama; he definitely would have a script for me. The theme for the competition was the ‘The Power of His Grace’ taken from Ephesians 2:8-9. I took some time to meditate on the theme verse and while I did that, an idea dropped in my mind and I went on to write a script. I wrote an epic story of forgiveness and transformation, describing what the grace of God did for us.

The next day, I informed Uche, who was also my classmate that I was done with the scripting. A script conference and all night rehearsals was scheduled for the next day at the Christian Union secretariat in Kenneth Dike Hall however, very few people turned up and since I was the only female present, I was escorted back to my hall by the guys who now went ahead to critique the script and make some modifications. With the script ready, all we needed to do was Casting and then rehearsals.

We had one week and a few days to go but it was rather difficult getting the cast of the drama all together, only a few people would turn up. I remember one particularly funny guy- Ogbonna; a final year Accounting student, he kept encouraging me not to back out from the competition. In his own words, ‘even if we come last, it is still to the glory of God.

We were finally able to organize one all night rehearsal, but we could not finish the entire drama. This was the competition week and it was also CABS week. Well the days went by without our rehearsing and finally it was Friday, the day before the competition. We scheduled another all-night rehearsal, this turned out to be worse than before. The girl who was to play the lead role did not show up, also a lot of the other supporting cast. I had to make do with the people that came, I also casted Uche as the King since we were short of people. The night went so fast, but we were able to do some work, we modified some scenes to accommodate the few casts that we had BUT we still had some characters missing. We rehearsed our ‘Glory Parade’ presentation- a 5 minutes display on what the department is all about. At the end of the rehearsal, I called the casts together and we seriously considered calling off our participation, Ota Uma Ben, one of the lead male characters opposed it vehemently and I decided to have him act as both the Native Doctor and the Drunk since the native Doctor scene was a short one and he would be wearing heavy make-up that would disguise him. Ogbonna who was the opening act was also there chorusing his verse ‘even if we come last, it is still to the glory of God’. At this point, I couldn’t back out. I had to make this work.

On the day of the competition, I had to go to the rooms of the characters that backed out to plead with them to come back in but they all refused. I asked some of my friends and they all laughed that they did not want to partake in the ‘last coming’. I finally went back to my room and met one of my roommates Ify, she had never been on stage before but I convinced her to play a supporting role. I also went downstairs to my former room when I was in 2nd year and met one of my roommates; I offered her the role of the Prince’s fiancée and ran through it with her. I told her we would have one more rehearsal outside the hall before going up to act.

The competition was scheduled to start by 6pm and we gathered outside the hall at about 5pm. While we were there, I started hearing stories of how the Medical Faculty had been rehearsing for over one month and how the Law Faculty had one mind blowing drama. At this point I could feel my stomach cringe. We were able to squeeze in some rehearsal time before the competition started and I was called to pick the slot for CABS. While we were rehearsing, a guy walked up to us and asked if this was CABS, we told him yes and he volunteered to act so I casted him as one of the King’s guards since we had only one guard at that time. He quickly pulled his shirt and donned a costume.

Upstage, the moderator emphasized the fact that CABS had ‘come last’ three times consecutively but I kept a straight face and picked our slot. We were to present in the third place for the ‘Glory Parade’ and Second place for the drama. The performance started, the Law Faculty had their glory parade first, the story of Jesus and how he forgave the adulteress regardless of the legal system, then the medical faculty demonstrated how they brought hope to nations through missions outreaches, next we came on stage and sincerely our performance was a blur, I can’t remember what we did though we tried to communicate something about money. Next, the Environmental Sciences presented a Glory Parade so powerful that I still remember every scene. They retold the story of creation and showed how God sent Surveyors to check out the earth, Architects to design, Estate Managers to plan etc. The voice over was baritone (it belonged to my NIFES Fellowship President) and with every sentence the action took place on stage. They got a standing ovation at the end. 

Next came the drama presentations, the Medical Faculty went first and then we followed. First scene, Ogbonna went up and committed suicide on stage because he had so many issues including a wayward wife and an imbecile daughter. Several years later, his daughter had grown up and had become the laughing stock of the village. At this time, the King’s son was preparing to get married to his fiancée but in order to prove that she could be of relevance; the imbecile visited a native doctor for a charm to make the prince fall in love with her. On the day of the wedding, just as the Prince was leaving the Palace, amidst much jubilation the imbecile walked past and blew the powdered charm on him. Unfortunately, the Prince fell down and died instantly while the imbecile turned blind. Pandemonium struck and the King summoned the Chief Priest to find out what happened to his son. The Chief Priest announced several days later that it was the imbecile that killed the Prince. The villagers were aghast and cried for her blood, she had to die. At this point the King stood up much to everyone’s amazement and declared that there was no need shedding another blood. His son was already dead and killing the imbecile won’t bring him back. He forgave her there and then and asked the Chief priest what could be done to help her regain her sight. The Chief Priest started his incantations and while he was at it, everywhere became dark (and we quickly ran to the imbecile and straightened out her hair and redid her dress) by the time the lights came back up, in the place of the ugly cross-eyed imbecile stood a beautiful young lady. The villagers were amazed (and backstage my faithful Ota Uma Ben raised the chorus that we the villagers forgot on stage- Amazing Grace) the moderator took up the song while we quickly filed out of stage before we exceed our assigned 20 minutes and loose marks. This was amidst shouts of ‘You don win, You don win’ from the audience. I was so sure that they were mocking us. Outside the hall, I thanked all my cast for their participation, we prayed and thanked God and we went back inside to watch the rest of the drama presentation.

Finally, it was time to announce the results and I steeled my back as Ogbonna’s words echoed in my ears ‘even if we come last, it is still to the glory of God. The result for the Glory parade was announced first and we came last. The moderator did not even bother calling our name, he just announced the first three and since we were only four faculties competing, we just knew our place. Next was the result for the drama presentations;

“The award for the Best Directing goes to …. The Christian Association of Business Students Drama group!” The Moderator announced.

What? I could not believe my ears. I could see my cast members dancing and jumping and then it dawned on me that we were the one. I got up and walked up the stage in a daze and picked the plaque, smiling. I proceeded back to the audience amidst cheers.

The award for the Best Script goes to…. CABS Drama Group!!!!” The cheers were deafening as I turned back to the stage to pick the second award. All our faculty members present screamed and danced and it took a while to get everyone to be quiet.

The awards for the best actor and actress came next and both went to my lead characters (Ota Uma Ben- the Native Doctor and Chijioke, the girl who acted as the Imbecile), also the award for the second best actor went to another of my characters. The one for the second best actress and best costuming went to another faculty.

“Next on our line-up of awards is the award for best Stage Management. Ladies and Gentlemen, give it up for CABS Drama Group!!!” I went up again to pick the award amidst cheers, I was astounded.  I walked back humbly to my seat as friends and team members hugged me.

Next were the final awards for the Drama Group of the year. The third and second positions were announced and then…

“The Overall Best Drama Group Award for the 2004 Shiloh Interfaculty Drama Competition goes to…. Christian Association of Business Students Drama Group!!!!!!”

‘Yeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa’ the scream was deafening.

I was awed as I walked towards the stage to pick the award. As I made it to the stage, Uche jumped in from nowhere and stood beside the Moderator and as soon as the trophy was handed over to me, he collected it and started jumping and screaming, it was more or less the crowning of his tenure as the President. The Drama group members all ran up stage as we danced and rejoiced, they made to carry me up but I declined, I was wearing a skirt and I was a lady, not a guy. The gist spread quickly all-round the hostels and I started getting congratulatory calls from friends and well-wishers. One of my friends that had earlier turned down my offer to perform called me on phone to congratulate me and to say that she wished she had accepted when I made the offer to her. I just laughed.

Funnily, that was my first time directing a drama, all these years; I had just been an actress, playing lead roles and all. Despite all the challenges, all the difficulties and all the discouragements, God helped us and we came out successful. I kept imagining what would have happened if we gave up…

The following day- Sunday was CABS thanksgiving service to mark the end of CABS week. I was invited to attend and we danced to the front of the Chapel with our several thanksgiving offerings and the trophy and plaques too. Later in the week, the fellowship hosted a party to celebrate the success and I was also invited. I was so happy that all went well and ended well.

But did it? Actually, that was just the beginning of my journey…

picture taken from www.panhala.net

Against All Odds: I had my babies!!! (Series 2)

ImageTwo of my friends Nkiru and Omar, in faraway Atlanta and Dallas, had just had babies. They had both had twins.

Excited for them I whipped out my card and bought gifts online to be delivered to the babies. Nothing lavish, just toys I knew would make the babies happy before they dissembled/chewed up the parts days later 

Later that month also, after I ran it by my husband, I took my pay check and dropped on the altar at the church I worshipped. I didn’t speak with any other person about this; I didn’t need anyone to know what I was sowing for. As I dropped it, I worshiped. I told God ‘this isn’t even half as much as what the doctor’s bill is for a procedure I’m not sure will put my babies on my lap so I’m giving it to you. This is my connection… You give millions of women babies for free, so I’m not going to be an exception. I trust you I won’t have to pay for mine and so I connect with my own babies with this seed’

I knew that an IVF or any other medical procedure to assist conception was a gift; Medical science was there to help us, the doctors weren’t evil, they were simply doing their job. I also knew that the formation of a baby in a woman’s womb is a big miracle and to be honest if I had sensed for one minute that an IVF was the way my babies were to come, I’d have gone ahead with the procedure. But I didn’t, because I knew God wanted me to just calm down and let Him do His thing. I knew that the only thing I was to do at this point was be calm and wait for His next instruction.

‘Be still…’

So I sowed my seed and prayed. I had to still my spirit. It wasn’t an easy process but thank God for the Word. I started eating it like bread. At work I’d keep my headsets plugged in as I went about my business, the 10 minutes’ drive to work were like 10 precious hours; I’d worship, I’d speak the word, I’d speak in tongues as I drove. My husband drew up specific confessions from the Word of God concerning fruitfulness, I declared them, and we declared them together. We didn’t let up. Every morning after we prayed, we’d speak those words over my body, over our home. We would thank God for our heritage of children.

I dropped the seed in May 2011; June went by. But on 11th July 2011, I realised I had missed my period! Wow! I was too excited! The day I found out I could hardly keep my feet on the floor. Beyond the Home Pregnancy Test (HPT) I wanted to get my blood tested. I went to the hospital and there via a blood test, the doctors confirmed again that I was pregnant! Yay!

I had to make a long distance two week trip for work and after the doctor cleared me to go, I went.  He asked me to come back after my trip by which time the baby would be big enough to be seen at a scan.

2 weeks later at the scan the radiographer told me words no expecting mother (especially one who’s waited so long) wants to hear; “my baby had stopped growing”. Before I even set out for the trip, at 6 weeks the baby, my first baby ever, had stopped growing!

He advised us to wait and see if it was temporary. He said he had seen things like that before and weeks later the baby turned out to be growing proper. About a month later we went back. There had been no improvement. I wasn’t pleased but I giggled like a little child as the doctor told me he was going to have to carry out a D & C on me to evacuate the products of conception.

My husband and I smiled at each other, the doctor was puzzled. He was used to seeing inconsolable mums but there I was, smiling. I smiled, my husband smiled. We were happy; God had proved to us that we could actually have babies naturally. So we figured that if it could happen once, oh then it was definitely going to happen again!

On September 12th, 2011 at 12.21pm, as I lay in bed and waited for the pill the doctor had inserted to “dissolve”/detach from my uterine wall the precious baby I had waited so long for, I made this entry in my secret diary on my iPhone:

“Lord, you know I’d rather not be going through this but from the depths of my heart I worship you because ALL things are working together for my good Lord, even this! Thank you for the great plans you have oh Lord, thank you…”

(Tears fill my eyes right now as I reminisce… But then I digress…)

In the evening, I went in for the procedure. I felt so embarrassed at the theater. Back and forth the doctor and the matron “scolded” me albeit playfully. They wondered why I fidgeted so much. Hadn’t I had a D&C carried out on me before? They made it sound like a D&C for a young woman was a normal occurrence like menstruating! They actually expected that I had done it several times before. Ha!

Anyway after the procedure, I healed fast. Then I patiently waited for my period to come since the doctor had told us we could go ahead and try for another baby soon as I saw my period.  

About a month later on a Friday evening I started spotting. I was elated, my period was starting. Another baby was in sight. By the following Sunday morning as we prepared for church I felt like an open tap. Blood was literally gushing out of me. If I as much as cleared my throat, I’d feel the blood gushing out (TMI sorry J ) and then there were the grape like clots. I kept soaking up and changing sanitary towels.

This wasn’t normal. Somehow I still made it to church. By evening the flow had reduced to spots.

Two days later I went to the hospital. The doctor insisted that I couldn’t be pregnant. It must be my period. But he ran a pregnancy test, and it was positive! I wasn’t sure what to think. I had gone alone to the hospital thinking it was just a routine visit. But when he started to say that based on the grape-like clots I told them I had seen, he suspected a molar pregnancy, I telephoned my husband to please meet me at the hospital.

The doctor told us that he wanted to admit me immediately and perform another D&C. This time one more thorough than the last where I would be under general anaesthesia for the duration of the procedure. He wanted to carry out the procedure the next morning and send the specimen for histology. He said a confirmed molar pregnancy meant two things; if it was benign, we would wait for at least 6 months before we could as much as start trying for another baby but if it was malignant, we would have to wait about a year till my system was confirmed clean of the ‘tumours’.

I was in a blur. This time I wasn’t smiling. But I wasn’t prepared for the admission just yet. I had only driven out for lunch from work and he wanted to admit me, just like that. I asked for the night to prepare myself psychologically, emotionally and then spiritually. He tried to insist I come in immediately but I wasn’t having it. It was a Tuesday and I hoped to go in for communion service, draw strength from God, and make sense of it all before putting myself under any doctor’s scalpel.

That evening in church, I wept. It seemed too much for me. One whole year? Before we could even try? This was October 2011, so I was going to have to wait till October 2012 before I could even think of trying for my own babies! I cried before God. My husband who was seated beside me tried to reach out to me but I was inconsolable. This seemed too much.

The next morning I had a couple of visitors. One of them was Uche again. We talked generally and she teased me lightly, ‘Hmmm after keeping yourself as a single lady like a joke you are going to have two abortions?’

We mused about it, but I knew it wasn’t funny. What she said was true.

After she left, I was finally alone in the house, alone with my thoughts, alone with God. I slotted in an old Panam Percy Paul CD I had heard my husband’s driver play some weeks before. It had brought back high school memories and I had bought it off him while he played it in the car. I left it playing in the background as I tried to find refreshing in the secret place. I prayed in the spirit, trying to get to that place in my spirit where I was calm, calm enough to understand why, calm enough to get the specific Rhema for my specific situation.

Suddenly I started weeping. As I groaned and prayed, I heard myself saying, “Lord I am so sorry…” I didn’t get it but I trusted the Holy Spirit praying through me… Finally the words came out of my mouth, “Lord, I am so sorry for losing what you gave me…”

As those words came out, I knew. I wept even more; I just knew in my spirit that it wasn’t right! The challenge wasn’t with God, He had done ALL he needed to do for me to live a victorious life years ago, He had given me all I needed; what business did I have losing my baby(ies). Not just once, but twice?! I remembered a message I had listened to and I asked myself, “Why in the world did Jesus come?” If He came that I would still be going through these messes in my life then He hadn’t done a complete job. But I knew His job was complete; when He said “it is finished,” it was indeed finished.

 I got down on my knees, in that instant I knew I was not going to let this happen ever again. I made up my mind that whatever areas of ignorance I had walked in that allowed me lose my babies; I was going to deal with them. I was going to get the knowledge I needed from the Word of God and fight my good fight of faith. No, I wasn’t going to base my life on anyone’s experiences. Experiences are fickle. But God’s Word was the one true standard, unchanging over time. His Word was the guideline for my life. I was going to war with it and ensure that my experiences lined up with His Word. It was going to cost me something but it was going to be well worth it.

By this time, it was almost time for me to go to the hospital. I packed my bag quickly and waited for my husband to get home. When he got home, he joked that the wife he met was definitely more cheerful than the one he left in the morning. If he only knew where I had been; I had been somewhere, a place no man could reach me however hard they tried, I had spent time in the secret place, the place where the Father speaks and His words bring healing and refreshing.

Hanging over our heads still was the prognosis of a molar pregnancy. We sat in our sitting room to pray before we set out for the hospital. While we prayed, I heard my husband declare that God perfected all about my body. He declared I was healed and they would find no traces of a molar pregnancy in my body. I said Amen. I didn’t know how but I knew everything was alright, things weren’t going to be alright; they were alright already.

The next morning, when the nurses came for me, I smiled bravely at everyone in my room. But as I was wheeled to the basement in the wheelchair, I started crying softly. My husband knowing how the whole procedure would make me feel was waiting in the recovery room by the time we got downstairs, he had used the stairs. He held my hands and insisted we speak in tongues. Truly, “he that speaks in tongues emboldens himself” (1 Corinthians 14:4) I got bolder, and went in for the procedure. The last thing I remember was the mask they placed over my nose as I drifted off.

After the whole procedure, the doctors confirmed that after their extensive checking up, they found N.O.T.H.I.N.G. They sent the little specimen they could find for histology and it showed I was totally healthy, only healthy ‘products of conception’ were found. No molar pregnancy, nothing. To say we were grateful to God is an understatement.

After that incident, my husband and I insisted we were going to wait it out till my body healed properly. I started feeding my spirit for the next time I would be pregnant. All this happened in October 2011.

November passed, December 2011 ended. But I was thankful. I thanked God for his mercies, if I hadn’t got pregnant that year, I may have felt tense. I may have felt the need to panic, I may have started calculating and questioning. But He had allowed it happen to let me know that all was well, it was possible. That was the mind-set I chose to have. Regardless of how I felt, I maintained that mind-set.

**********

January 2012 came. I was determined this was the year my husband and I would carry our babies, we were both determined. At the annual 12 days of Glory praying and fasting programme in my church, on day 6 – 7th January 2012 precisely – the guest minister, Pastor Korede Komaya, declared there was going to be an “overflow” of twins. He announced prophetically, ‘watch out for October, It’s not just going to be a month of babies alone, but twins’.

Then he asked all women desiring the fruit of the womb or those standing in for friends/family desiring same to come forward. I hesitated in my seat. Seated to my right was my husband and to my left, my friend Elizabeth. Elizabeth elbowed me. “What are you waiting for?” I hesitated still. Then she insisted, “Ok, I am going to go out with you!” All three of us went out, her in front, me in the middle and my dear husband behind me.

All I could notice when I went forward was how silky Pastor Korede’s blazer was. He was holding it out and asked us to make contact with it since he wasn’t going to be able to minister to everyone who came forward personally. I chided myself, there I was, out to receive a miracle and I was thinking such “carnal” thoughts about a blazer! J J  

I went back to my seat. I honestly didn’t feel anything, no goose bumps, nothing  No warmth in my abdomen, nothing.

But I started counting, and calculating. “Okay, if it’s October, I have to get pregnant this month (January)” etc. On the 24th of January, my period came!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I wasn’t pleased; I kept asking “dear Lord wasn’t that word for me?” The Holy Spirit calmed me down, he kept insisting, “Ulu, keep the Word in your mouth. Don’t be moved by what you see.”

I remembered that cliché about doing something you’ve never done to get something you’ve never got. I tried to think of what I could do that I had never done before. I remembered I had given my full salary twice in a row, I thought maybe I could do it thrice in a row.

After consulting with the head of my home J I sowed my December 2011 and January 2012 salaries – my January salary already wasn’t mine anyway, it was my firstfruit offering. I also planned to sow my February 2012 salary when it came. All of it.

In addition to my seed, I wasn’t playing with my words. I knew that as Reverend Chris Oyakhilome had preached several times, “the Word of God on my lips was God talking” I was continually speaking. My husband was speaking. We didn’t wait for our prayer times, even in our jokes, we talked about our babies ‘Oj and Aj’ like they were a part of our family already.

Also, after my period came on the 24th of January, the two weeks after, before I ovulated I started using the Christ Embassy Abuja Rose of Sharon confessions booklet to talk to my body, I spoke to my eggs, I spoke to my husband’s seed which I would shortly receive. I specifically said what those seed would do in me. I spoke to everything I could think of.

The two weeks after I ovulated, I switched to the pregnancy part of the confession booklet (for women who were actually pregnant). Then I kept laying hands on my body during our morning devotion. I saw myself pregnant so I spoke to the baby. I called the baby healthy, well-formed etc.

On February 18th, I noticed my BBT (Basal Body Temperature) was still high. My period was meant to come that day, and for the BBT gurus you know your temp shouldn’t stay high the day of your period. It’s meant to drop. I tried to stay calm. By afternoon I couldn’t hold back, I went into the bathroom to test. I almost screamed when I saw the faint double line!!!!

My husband was watching a match in the sitting room, I went to him and giggled; “Apple we are pregnant!”

He looked at me like I was from Mars, “Yes now, that’s what we expected” then he laid hands on my abdomen and blessed me and the baby in there.

Ah, I so monitored the baby, I would talk to him/her each morning; I would declare s/he grew well. All things worked for his/her good, my food, my dressing everything.

When I was 6 weeks pregnant, I went for a scan.

It was at a women’s health centre and the doctor referred me to a bigger hospital where they had a more advanced scanner. I went there not knowing why. As I lay on the bed, the radiographer called his assistant and said, “this is the type I was telling you about; twins in two different sacs” He wasn’t even talking to me, as in!!!!!!!!!!! He then went on to comment that the position of the fibroids was critical. If he had seen them before conception he would have advised me to take them out.

“Yayyyyyyyyy” I couldn’t even scream, I just put my hands over my mouth and gasped.

“Me? Carrying twins!!!”

You can’t even start to imagine how I felt!!!!

As I shakily (from excitement this time) walked back to my car in the hospital parking lot, I called my husband. ‘Apple we are having twins!!!!

This time he acted like I was from Jupiter, “Yes now, that’s what we’ve been expecting.”

I just giggled. “E pele o man of God, man of faith I hear you…” 

The 9 months were simply wonderful. Everyone warned me, ‘symptoms are usually aggravated with twins’ etc. BUT I refused to observe lying vanities. I spoke what I wanted to see, and what I spoke, I saw; no vomiting, no spitting, no big nose (well, the last month I didn’t care anymore, I just wanted the babies out so I guess my nose did its thing   ) a precious/portable sized tummy (I never liked bulging long tummies  ) Better still was the fact that the fibroids kept shifting, my strong daughter who was on top of her brother kept pushing them away and making space for her unhindered growth.  Once I commented to the doctor that she was surely going to push them round to my back because they kept moving away to the side!

A couple of times in my first trimester when I spotted, God just led me to the right doctors. Everything ran smoothly. The Word kept me!

*******

 Finally, the day of delivery came!

As they pulled the babies out of me, I felt my chest tightening. I couldn’t breathe properly. I called out to my husband who was excitedly telling me as they pulled my son out, “He is out” and I said, “Please lay your hands on my head and speak” then I put my headset back in and turned on my “Christ consciousness” podcast blocking out every other voice as I opened my mouth to declare the Word while I clamped the oxygen mask firmly over my nose ‘I am alive to God, I live I don’t die…’

‘What’s the point?’ I heard this voice say, ‘Close your eyes and sleep’.

I just laughed because I knew what the ‘sleep’ meant and spoke all the more intensely, ‘Greater is the life in me than all the death in the world. I am alive to God… Thank you Jesus’

When the doctor asked me, ‘how are you feeling madam,’ I said, ‘I still am not breathing well’

The more I said that, the worse I felt. Suddenly, I realised that too was a confession, my words at that time were God speaking! Hmmm I had to speak right, I quickly changed what I was saying, ‘Doctor, it is getting better but it can still be better…’ They kept monitoring me, I am not sure at what point I drifted off but when I woke up I was back in my room with my babies beside me! Yayyyy!

And so it was, on October 5th 2012, a year after I made that journal entry in my diary, a year after the doctors had told me I would have to wait before trying to conceive, our twin babies, our son and our daughter Osborne-Joshua Oluwadumininu Chizitere and Amanda-Jessica Oluwatumininu Abumnkechi were born.!

Each day I look at those beautiful children I see the fulfillment of prophecy. I look at them and see verity in that statement, “if you stick to the Word, you will come back with a testimony!!!!’ They are MY testimony I came back with.

I look at them and realise that no matter what we face, whatever the challenge – financial, emotional, whatever, the Word of God is all we need. All things we need are REALLY wrapped in the Word.

There is NO hopeless situation for the child of God, none.

Is it a physical ailment? The same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead dwells in you, He will give life to what the doctors called dead. Choose to agree with the Word not that medical report.

Is it in your finances? There is a way out! No matter how messy the financial situation is, His Word has all the answers you need. Don’t agree with those calling you broke and messed up. The Word is able…

I remember a word I had heard that stuck firmly in my spirit while I waited, “God gets glory when you use the name of Jesus to get results” DON’T GIVE UP! It doesn’t really count how long you have waited or how long you’ve been in the situation, it also doesn’t matter how hopeless and unexplainable men may have called your case, the Name of Jesus works, the Word of God works. ALWAYS.
Remember the man at the pool of Bethesda, he had been in the situation 38 years (John 5:1-9) His friends and family must have concluded that was how things were going to end for him. They must have written his situation off as a lost case. They must have told him that was ‘God’s will’ for him and advised him to live with it.
But one encounter with Jesus, one encounter with the Word ended decades of frustration. There’s a specific Rhema for you. It doesn’t have to be my way, there is a specific word from God for you concerning your specific situation; stop running all over the place, stop fretting, calmly sit before Him and let Him tell you YOUR specific way out. Then stick with it, regardless of the pressure… regardless…

I am so excited, God didn’t leave us helpless in this world. Sure, things may look chaotic around us, the media may flood us with endless tales of woe and disaster but God is still doing great things! The Word still works, and it will SURELY work for you too, wipe your eyes… He did it for me; He will do it for you too!

“…Now I’m turning you over to God, our marvellous God whose gracious Word can make you into what he wants you to be and give you everything you could possibly need…”

 (Acts 20:32 The Message Translation)

Culled from spiceymorsels.wordpress.com

Against All odds: I had my babies!!! (Series 1)

ImageI remember the day clearly; it was just a normal day. The sun was shining, the birds were singing. Everything seemed normal, so nothing prepared me for what I was about to be told that day.

As I left for work, I cheerily reminded my husband that we had an appointment with the doctor that evening after work. We agreed I’d drive home from work so we’d go together. For me it was a routine visit.

We’d been married two years and had no children yet. I had somehow convinced him to let us get checked, to know what was causing the ‘delay’. He wasn’t very pleased because he felt two years was too soon and still within our plan but we agreed to go ahead with it. And so over the past month I had gone for series of tests, and he’d gone for his. That was the day for us to get the results from the gynaecologist.

As we settled into the seats offered to us in his office, there were about 3 other professionals routinely present. They had been part of the past month’s process in one way or the other and were probably required to be present to affirm that what they had documented for the medical director (MD) was true and fair (as they say in my profession)

The MD handed my husband the envelope and waited while we read through. It was all Greek to us but we pretended to read it. When we were done, we looked up.

‘Well,’ he started ‘Sir you are very okay. But we saw some things in madam’

If I were a rabbit, anyone could have seen my ears flip high and firm, instantly. But I wasn’t. I mentally patted my Brier rabbit ears down and tried to focus.

He went on to explain that first they saw some lemon sized fibroids in my womb; they also claimed that they saw one blocked tube with a healthy ovary and then the second tube which was open had an ovary with a cyst so conception through that tube wasn’t even possible in their opinion. Then finally they claimed that my hormones were imbalanced.

He announced all this, and then smiled in a patronizing manner at me waiting for it to sink in. In his white caftan he somehow reminded me of the figure meant to be God in ‘Evan Almighty’ Normally, I would chuckle but I wasn’t quite amused.

Sitting behind the desk, he reeled out all this information supposedly about my body all the time smiling. And all I could think was ‘whatever is he smiling about’ It wasn’t funny! Was I meant to smile back? I looked sideways at my husband.

‘So Doctor’ I heard my husband ask, ‘what do you recommend?’

He smiled again; apparently he had been through these motions so many times before, and was patiently waiting for us to get there. He seemed pleased that we got there quickly.

‘Yes Sir we have dealt with several cases like this before. The truth is madam can’t conceive naturally. There are just so many militating factors. First the fibroids, then the other issues I’ve listed.’

‘So….?’

‘Yes, yes it’s very easy. I’ve handled cases like this before’.

Mentally again, I groaned. “Aaaaargh! Don’t say that one more time already…”

‘I would say madam should come in for a fibroid surgery before the end of this month (this was April 2011) and then we would ‘prepare her’ for June when she can join the batch of patients requiring an IVF.

All this time my husband patted my knee under the table, his cue for me to keep calm.

Hmmmmm! I wasn’t just calm at this point, I was plain numb. I wasn’t feeling a thing.

This voice that certainly wasn’t mine, tried to get my attention in my mind, ‘So much for waiting for your husband. What happened to your body then?! You can’t even conceive! You need help with conception!’

He went on to assure us that his fibroid surgeries were neat, neater than laser surgeries even. His medical team echoed in affirmation.

He then introduced one of them to me and said, ‘This is your personal fertility consultant. Any other questions you have, he’ll attend to personally.’

Before I left he re-examined me. As I went to the bathroom to freshen up I locked the door; I finally felt something… Tears… They filled up my eyes. What was this whole story about? What were they even telling me? Dear Lord!

Almost immediately I remembered something I’d heard my Pastor say way back; “your first response to any negative thing you hear matters a lot.”

I wiped my eyes, rather than think or speak wrong I’d not even think at all…

We followed our personal ‘consultant’ to the adjoining room.

Out of curiosity I asked him what the cost implications were. He reeled out the figures; first because of how “neat and tidy” the fibroid surgery would be it was going to cost us so much. Then the IVF was going to cost much more.

I went further; ‘what are the guarantees?’

My husband tapped me gently on my knee again, but I was really curious.

‘Thing is madam it all depends on your body and your eggs…”

He kept talking but I wasn’t really listening, all I could summarize was, there really was no guarantee. We could pay so much and still not have our babies.

It seemed hopeless…

As my husband and I walked back to the car, I heard that gentle voice I had heard a couple of times in my life, “Ulu, at what point do you want to start trusting me? Is it when some man stamps your case and calls it medically impossible that you’d trust me? Why not war with my Word now?”

I pretended I didn’t hear. I did not need this.

During the drive home my husband swung into action, like many times before he wanted to ensure the voice of the Word was what I paid attention to, not the voice of men, my feelings or any other voice.

‘Baby, you do know all they said is the fact but not the truth? You know we believe only one thing, what God’s Word says about us.’

I was silent. I knew he was right but at that time I didn’t feel like saying anything.

‘We are just going to let God give us our babies,’ he continued ‘I know all is right with your body because God’s Word says so.’

Days passed and turned to weeks as I contemplated what to do. What could my faith carry? Could I really wait it out? A few weeks later I sent a mail to a few of my trusted friends. The bible says in the multitude of counselors there is safety right? I sent them a mail telling them what was going on and asking them what they thought.

No one really knew what was going on prior to that time. They all thought we were just taking our time with having babies. And that was what I thought too till I got those negative reports!

In the mail I took out time to explain what the doctor said and asked what they thought.

Thank God for godly friends, Thank God for iron that sharpens iron. At different times and in different ways, they encouraged me. They let me know that whatever course I took, they were sure I’d emerge victorious.

A few days after I sent out the mail, my friend Uche and I messaged each other on our blackberry phones. We chatted back and forth about how this was a beautiful fight of faith, about how the best part of the fight was that like in a movie script where the end had been written the principal actor (no matter how formidable the aliens he came against) always won. We laughed and insisted I was to remember that I had already won.

‘Look’ she concluded, ‘we have so many weapons at our disposal. We will use all of them; our seed, our confessions, the communion, our praise. We’ll join all of them together and have these babies. We will sow seed, we will speak the Word consistently, and we will take communion. Every weapon God has given us; supernaturally we will form these babies.’

‘The same way people master science or business administration because they studied it; we are going to study healing and divine health. We are going to study how to get all your body parts to align with the Word of God.’

Honestly, it was so tempting to panic; usually I am a go getter, I love getting up and getting things done, I like planning and working things out. It is usually very hard for me to sit still without working to get something, anything done. But this time all I could hear in my spirit was, ‘be still and know that I am God.’

Each time I wanted to do something I’d hear him say, ‘Be still…’

A friend who had just finished from medical school in England asked me to send the medical report from the hospital we’d been to so that her professor, an expert OB/GYN (obstetrician/gynaecologist) could re-evaluate the reports and advise us accordingly.

As I packed the documents to the scanner I heard him clearly, ‘Be still…’

I instantly knew that wasn’t what He wanted. I put them away.

*Sigh* Being still was so hard….

*To be continued*

Extract from spiceymorcels.wordpress.com