IF WITCHES WERE HORSES … Episode 49&50 – Kolade Segun Okeowo

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IF WITCHES WERE HORSES – EPISODE 49

Two hours later, about 18 armed men burst into the gyration venue and shot sporadically and indiscriminately to disperse those at the Keggites’ festival. The information they had was that Lanre will be at the gyration to honour Akin Sewanu who was due to become an Honourary Comrade of the Keggites Club. The sporadic shootings continued as the gun-throttling men kept shouting “Where is Larry Bee Odgjidga?

Within two minutes, the cultists were done at the gyration of the Keggites Club. About nine students had been murdered in cold blood. As they shot, they kept asking for Lanre. Unknown to them, Lanre was fast asleep in his Presidential room at Awolowo Hall.

Realising that their efforts in tracking down Lanre had failed, the cultists moved to Awolowo Hall wher Lanre resided with a mission to gun him down at all cost. Within a few minutes, some of them were already on the Presidential floor where Sewanu and Lanre resided. About the time they fired the first gunshot downstairs; Lanre woke up and ran outside the room.

The light on the corridor had been switched off. They had attacked a student by name Yomi Ajileye who was sleeping outside on the corridor. He had slept there with his girlfriend. He was a final-year student. As soon as Yemi heard the gun shot, he and the lady ran into downstairs. Unfortunately, they ran into a hail of bullets as the cultists marched up menacingly towards Lanre’s room. Lanre had also rushed out of the room and was running towards the stairs when he had the shots.

Lanre was lucky to have come out when he heard the first gunshot as they opened fire on Ajileye. Miraculously, the lady with Ajileye escaped. She had ducked under the staircase and was not seen by the cultists. Immediately Lanre saw the gory sight, he ran back into his room grabbed the walkie-talkie and began to scream into the device.

“Attention!!! Attention!!! Awolowo Hall under heavy gun attack!!! Rescue immediately” He shouted into the walkie talkie, speaking to no one in particular but hoped the Chief Security Officer of the University will at least be at alert to receive the message.

Jumping out of his room, Lanre ran into the next room between his and Sewanu’s. He quickly alerted the medical student living in the room and together they jumped to the back door through the balcony to connect the last room on the floor. It was a two-storey building, so Lanre and the Medical Student had to precariously move on the railings of the balcony to connect the last room from where they could make good their escape.

Any slight slip on the railings would have sent them crashing to the concrete floor several metres below. Lanre who was sleeping a few moments ago had suddenly become extra alert.

Thanks to the training he had received when he joined the Cadet Corps during his first year on the campus, he scaled through successfully, guiding the medical student as they climbed on together.

When the cultists entered Lanre’s room, they didn’t see him, so they went straight to Sewanu’s room. Unfortunately for Sewanu, he was sleeping in the room. Another student; Bamidele Ojo was also in the room with him. Curiously, they were both fast asleep and completely unconscious of events around them.

Information has it that Sewanu and Bamidele had drank themselves to stupor in preparation for the Keggites night out before they slept. They shot Sewanu right there on his bed and Bamidele, who was by his side and hacked at their bodies as well.

When the medical student and Lanre got to the last room, they met some other students there. They were completely frightened and shivering with fear as they listened to the sounds of sporadic gun shots going on. At a point, Lanre struggled to come out because as the cultists were going from one room to another they were shouting his name.

“Larry Bee, if you’re bold, come out” Their voices rang out again.

Lanre felt the right thing was to go out and confront them, but the guys in the room held him down as the shooting continued. The cultists ransacked all the rooms except the last one.

Mrs. Durotoye yawned again. She was already fagged out and wanted to sleep desperately. She had a busy day. She wanted to round up the prayers but she had a strong urge to continue the prayers.

When the cultists left, Lanre came out and went straight to Sewanu’s room. Others simply bolted through the opposite direction and fled the hall in great fear.

As Lanre raced towards Sewanu’s room, several wild thoughts went through his mind on what could have happened to Sewanu. His wild thoughts were confirmed as he entered the room and met the lifeless body of Sewanu on his blood-soaked bed. Sewanu was dead but Bamidele was still alive, although in a pool of his own blood.

Bamidele stared at Lanre as his lips moved calling out Lanre’s name and stretched his hand towards him for help. Lanre quickly grabbed Bamidele and tried to help him. He immediately ran outside again to see if he could find another student to assist him carry Bamidele, but he couldn’t find anybody.

He went up and down. As he paced up and down the corridor, a student jumped out from one of the already ransacked rooms and ran into Lanre. He froze as soon as he saw Lanre thinking he was a ghost, so he ran back into the room. He had heard the cultist entered Lanre’s room shouting his name, so he could not imagine how Lanre would have escaped being murdered.

Lanre followed him into the room to convince him that he was alive. He told the student, a squatter in one of the exco rooms about Bamidele and convinced him of the need to help the poor boy. Reluctantly and jittery, he followed Lanre to Sewanu’s room to help him but before they got to Bamidele, he had lost so much blood and had died.

When the cultists were coming upstairs earlier on, they met one guy on the staircase and he was also shot. They also attacked a lot of students with machetes and axes. They met another student while going upstairs.

One of them slapped him across the face and the guy retaliated, so they shot at him. They used an axe to cut him and he ran behind a door. The guy lost consciousness immediately and passed out. Several other students were injured; some had minor gunshot wounds.

Eventually, the cultists went back to The SUG Building where they had actually sighted Lanre earlier, thinking the information they had about him being in the room was not correct.

They broke into his office, shot at the glasses there, and used their axes to damage the fridge, electric typewriters and other electronics before they drove towards the campus gate.

The distress call Lanre made on the walkie-talkie paid off. Immediately the CSO received the distress call, he had swung into action by inviting the police who quickly mounted a blockade at all the entrances leading into and out of the university.

Over the night, Lanre immediately called an emergency congress of the Students’ Union. Despite the odd hour of the congress, over one thousand students attended the congress. Lanre wasted no time to address the congress.

He gave a background information on what happened prior to the attacks and the situation report. He talked about the fact that cultists attack was purely pre-meditated and the target was the Students Union Executives amongst whom was Sewanu the Secretary General who they had successfully gunned down.

A minute of silence was held for Sewanu and the other fallen students of the one-night massacre.

The Congress quickly set up some committees which included a Search and Rescue Committee that started looking for all the students that were injured in the bushes, on the paths, in the rooms and taking them to the Health Centre.

Another committee was set up to look for students and other members of the University community that could donate blood to the wounded persons. A Security Committee was initiated and given the mandate to go round and ransack the campus environment to fish out suspicious looking persons. The committees swung to work immediately.

As soon as the congress dispersed, Lanre stepped to a corner of the amphitheatre and knelt to pray.

“Lord Jesus, thank you for standing in gap to protect me today as you have always done. Although my heart is heavy that I have lost many colleagues and fellow students in this battle, yet I thank you for giving me the grace to see the end of it all. Lord Jesus, I ask for special grace, wisdom and courage to navigate these stormy seas. I also ask that none of these evil minded cultists responsible for tonight’s attack will go scot free. Thank you Lord for answered prayers. In Jesus name I have prayed…Amen”

As he stood up, he felt a sharp pain on his knees. His two legs ached painfully. The dangers of the night and the urgent need for survival and immediate action had prevented him from noticing the pains.

A round of applause greeted him as he stepped back to the amphitheatre into the waiting arms of the University CSO, the Students’ Affairs Officer and the other Union Executives.

The Security Committee worked hand in hand with the CSO who provided them with relevant assistance of men and vehicles with which they went round the halls of residence, lecture theatres and the recreation centres.

After about two hours of intense search, assisted with intelligence reports and grapevine sources, the suspected cultists numbering about twenty-four were apprehended from different locations on the campus and handed over to the police. When they were arrested, the culprits were caught with clothes bearing the insignia of their cult group with blood stains on them and various degrees of ammunitions.

That night, Morakinyo could not sleep. He had a nudge from the Holy Spirit to pray. He initially felt guilty because of his experience at Sister Gbayike’s house the previous day. He kept asking questions about what happened when he visited her.

He felt terribly humbled that he could come that low with a sister and kept blaming himself for daring to visit Gbayike alone on the eve of his resumption at the Bible College. After a few hours of pondering over the incident, he seemed to hear a voice spoke to him.

“That is a reminder that you are only but human: take heed”

He stood from the bed and walked round the room and started thanking God. The words encouraged him even as it came as a warning. He began to speak in tongues and started praying for his mission to the Bible College at Ikeji-Arakeji and the mission at Onigba-Iwofa.

Suddenly, his mind wen to his nephew on the campus; Lanre. He felt an urge to start praying for him. He continued to pray until the early hours of the morning and started getting ready for the trip to Ikeji Arakeji, where he would spend the next three months learning how to serve God better.

As he knelt before the Senior Pastor that morning to receive the final prayers before leaving for Ikeji Arakeji, he felt uncomfortable again about what happened at Sister Gbayikes house yesterday. He felt the need to confess what he did to the Pastor before leaving.

‘Why? You have told God and He said it is only a reminder of your humanity…What if the Senior Pastor imposes another suspension on you again…That will mean another delay in your ministry’

The battle raged on as the Senior Pastor prayed for him.

“In Jesus name we have prayed” The Senior Pastor rounded up the prayers and urged him to stand, but Morakinyo remained on his kneeling position, head bowed.

“Bro. Morakinyo, you can stand” The Senior Pastor said as he sat and still noticed Morakinyo had remained on his knees.

“Daddy, I have a confession to make Sir” Morakinyo said tearfully. Pastor Kalejaye’s heart missed a beat!!!

‘A confession? Has he slept with Sister Gbayike’ His mind went straight to no one but Gbayike.

“What have you done to Sister Gbayike, Brother Morakinyo” Pastor Kalejaye asked sternly.

“Nothing Sir” Morakinyo managed to answer still smarting from the shock of how Pastor Kalejaye knew he wanted to speak about Sister Gbayike.

“I did nothing to her, but…but I went to her house without your consent”

Pastor Kalejaye adjusted his seat again and breathed a sigh of relief. His imaginations had gone wild trying to fathom what could have happened to necessitate a confession. Now that, he has mentioned visitation as the sin to be confessed, he was grateful that it was no more than that.

“Brother Morakinyo, my asking you not to visit Sister Gbayike was not part of your punishment but simply a safeguard to protect you from unnecessary emotional stray. You are a human being just like our sister is also one. When it comes to s€xual sins, Saints don’t exist”

“Daddy am sorry Sir…I feel very bad already!!!”

“That’s okay…but are you sure nothing happened?” Pastor Kalejaye

asked, his eyes deeply penetrating Morakinyo’s. He has the habit of staring deeply at anyone if he wants to find out if the person is telling a lie or not. Most of the time, liars would quake under the tension of his bulging and penetrating yes.

“Daddy, nothing happened. The moment I started feeling uncomfortable, I took excuse and left… I saw why you retrained me from visiting her. I saw it Sir” Morakinyo announced with remorse.

Pastor Kalejaye bowed his head and sighed.  He believed Morakinyo. He knew Morakinyo very well. If anything had happened, he would have told him. Morakinyo was one of the few of his children he could vouch for at any time. That was one of the reasons why he took caution to the winds concerning the mission to Onigba-Iwofa. He least expected the incident that happened at Onigba-Iwofa, especially the Oyinkan episode. However, he had leant to forgive Morakinyo and move on.

It took seven long tortuous hours to get to Ikeji-Arakeji. The vehicle Morakinyo boarded at Ibadan en-route Akure had broken down three times causing unnecessary delays on the less than four-hour journey. When eventually the vehicle stopped at the entrance of the Joseph Ayo Babalola Miracle Camp and Bible College, Ikeji-Arakeji, Morakinyo raised his hands in praises to the King of Heaven. He greeted the other passengers in the 404 Station wagon car and wished them well and prayed against the re-occurrence of the events of the last seven hours.

As he got to the gate of the Miracle Camp and Bible College, tears streamed down his eyes as he recalled that this is what he had to do before stepping out into the Onigba-Iwofa mission at all. He stopped at the stream near the entrance of the camp and removed his shoes before stepping into the stream. He had heard stories about the stream and its miraculous abilities.

The Great Apostle and Prophet Ayo Babalola of blessed memory was said to have been baptized in that water. As he waded in the water, he prayed for unusual grace and unction to come upon his life and ministry. He asked for grace to finish well and mentioned Pastor Joju and his wife who are presently holding forth for him at Onigba-Iwofa.

The first sight that greeted Morakinyo as he entered he camp properly was a shocker. Kneeling in the scathing sun was a group of students like him with their bags placed in a corner. Some were marching with their knees while others were frog jumping and doing all sorts of punishments.

“Hey!!! Pastor Latecomer, o yah join your colleagues!!!” The voice of the man who appeared to be the coordinator of the group rang out rudely at him. “You came late and you are marching majestically here!!!” The man shouted at him again.

“Sir, I can explain…the vehicle I boarded from Ibadan broke down more than four times Sir. I left Ibadan very early!!” Morakinyo explained.

“Pastor Latecomer, you see, everyone here can explain… so please join them and offer your explanation later. You are welcome in Jesus name Sir” The man answered sarcastically and walked away to another group cutting grasses on a large field.

Morakinyo dropped his bags and joined the kneeling latecomers. He had heard stories of painful punishments and manual works meted out as punishments to trainee pastors in Bible Schools. Now he has come face to face with one of such and it is now his time to experience it. Joyfully, he joined the punishment under the scathing sun and quickly forgot his status as a PhD holder and former Senior Lecturer at The Federal University, Ibadan.

Thank God for the experiences at the mission field over the last six months, he had become used to hardships and hardness. Kneeling in the sun was no match for the tortuous and scary trek in the Alupayida forest…the home of Ogaranganjan, the fearful demon. He smiled to himself as he recalled the harrowing but worthwhile experience of his first day on the road to Onigba-Iwofa, the healing of the King’s son and the encounters with Baba Jamolaya.

He was now sweating in the hot sun, the Principal of the Bible College had instructed that the late comers be left in the sun for the next one hour as their first lesson of time-keeping and punctuality- consciousness. For some of the new student Pastors, it was a baptism of fire! For some others like Morakinyo, it was a way of life!!!

That first night at Ikeji Arakeji, he had the dream again…he started gathering firewood on a farm. He sang as he gathered a big bundle. He looked around for a rope to tie the bundle of firewood. He saw a good one and pulled at it but the rope would not give way, he tried again and a sharp thorn pricked his hand. He screamed and turned away from the rope. He looked around for another one; he saw a thin rope not strong but was easy to pull. He pulled it out and tied the bundle all around. He pulled off his shirt and made it into head-rest. He carried the bundle to his head.

Just then, the rope broke and the bundle scattered….

IF WITCHES WERE HORSES – Episode 50

That first night at Ikeji Arakeji, he had the dream againhe started gathering firewood on a farm. He sang as he gathered a big bundle. He looked around for a rope to tie the bundle of firewood. He saw a good one and pulled at it but the rope would not give way, he tried again and a sharp thorn pricked his hand. He screamed and turned away from the rope.

He looked around for another one; he saw a thin rope not strong but was easy to pull. He pulled it out and tied the bundle all around. He pulled off his shirt and made it into head-rest. He carried the bundle to his head. Just then, the rope broke and the bundle scattered.

The mission at Onigba-Iwofa was returning to shape gradually. Pastor Joju and his wife had settled down quickly to the work within the first week. The healing miracle of Major Olabode was a major impetus to the mission work. Although, the church was not yet filled to capacity, many of those who had left the church after Morakinyo marriage to Oyinkan had started to return.

Even Mojoyin and Ilelomia had joined the church.

Early on a Sunday morning as Pastor Joju prayed ahead of the service, The Lord showed him a revelation. He had prayed all through the night asking God to perform wonders again and draw souls to His Kingdom. In the revelation, he saw a multitude rushing towards the church only to be told the hall was filled to capacity.

Not satisfied, some of them jumped through the windows while others sat on threes watching a spectacle inside the church. When Joju looked closely, he saw what the audience was crazy about was a stage drama going. A dead silence reigned as the people watched with rapt attention. Then Joju woke from the revelation!!!

Drama? In the Church? Is that possible? Mrs Joju quizzed when her husband told her about the revelation as they prepare for church that morning.

I dont know, but I know I have once watched a drama on stage when I was on the campus. I cant remember the group that acted the drama but it was awesomejust like what I saw in the revelationyes, the year was 1983

“Drama in the ChurchNever heard of suchSo what are you planning to doBring drama here? Won’t the church frown at that? Mrs. Joju asked with concern.

NoThe Senior Pastor once spoke about the efficacy of preaching the gospel using creative gifts. How I wish can get a Christian Theatre Group like the one I saw on Campus at Ilesha…It will help the church grow the more.

Unfortunately, I have forgotten the name of the group and the leader. He was also a student of the College of Education at Ilesha when I was thereOh no!!! We were not in the same department. I have forgotten the brother’s nameHoly Spirit !!!

God will help you to remember Mrs. Joju prayed as they finally stepped out of the house on the way to the church.

A few new comers attended church that Sunday. They were required to wait after the service, so that Pastor Joju and his wife could personally attend to them.

Pastor Joju started by praying with the new comers, immediately he settled to speak with them. His wife was attending another meeting with the women now headed again by Eebudola, Odewales wife.

Since the coming of Pastor Joju and his wife, she had become a firebrand of some sort attending to almost every needs of the church. No one pronounced her the women leader, she literally worked into that role and everyone accepted her as such.

You are welcome to our churchWe are glad that you camePlease tell us your namesSo that we can get to know you better. Lets start form you Sir Pastor Joju pointed at a young man that appeared to be in his mid-twenties.

Me, PastorYou mean me? He asked smiling sheepishly.

NoYour father!!! A middle aged women from the new comers seat said sarcastically throwing others into a fit of laughter. Pastor Joju also smiled.

Dont mind anyone, laughter is allowed in the house of God. Ok, go on, tell us your name Pastor Joju said smiling.

The young man cleared his throat adjusted his seat before speaking. Thank you pastorToday is my first time in this church

“As if we dont know! The woman sneered! The other new comers laughed again.

“Please continue my brotherWe are listening to you Pastor Joju assured him again. Just tell us your name He added.

Thank you SirMy name is Bamidele Bamigboye” He mentioned his name smiling sheepishly.

Bamidele Bamigboye !!!” Pastor Joju repeated the name twice looking straight into the young mans eyes. He welcomed him warmly and turned to the next person. He barely managed to listen to others as they reeled out their names.

Bamidele Bamigboye!!!” He kept repeating the name in his sub-conscious. He was not sure what was special about the name but his mind kept roaming around the name.

Oh, I remember him now!!! Pastor Joju almost shouted as they stepped into the parsonage after returning from the church. His eyes gleamed with excitement.

“Remember who? Mrs. Joju asked wondering what the excitement was all about.

“The brother whose name I was trying to remember!!! The brother I told you led a drama group back in our days at the College of Education”

“Oh really? How come?

“A newcomer bears a name similar to hisBamidele Bamigboye!!! The brothers name is Mike Bamiloye!!!” Pastor Joju announced with excitement. I have been battling to remember the name since the new comer mentioned his own name as Bamidele Bamigboye !!!”

Thats the Holy Spirit at work. You asked him for a lead and here you are Mrs. Joju said smiling.

Thank you Jesus

Within three days, Pastor Joju had established contact with the drama group named Mount Zion Drama Productions which had its base at Ile-Ife. Joju had contacted a pastor friend who resided in Ilesha on phone to get all necessary information about Bro Mike Bamiloye from the Oyo State College of Education, Ilesha.

Pastor Paul Alowolodu was faithful to the search for the group. His enquiries from the College of Education revealed that the group had settled in Ile-Ile. Convinced by the urgency of the need for the group to come to Onigba-Iwofa as explained to him by Pastor Joju, Alowolodu took the next available bus to Ile-Ife in search of Mike Bamiloye and his drama team.

The search took him first to the Gospel Truth Mission Church, Assembly where Mike Bamiloye was said to be a member. He strolled into the church that afternoon and met a woman cleaning the church in preparation for the evening service. The mention of the name Bamiloye caught the attention of the middle aged woman who volunteered additional information about Mike.

He used to do drama here! But the church has suspended him!

Suspended him? Why?”

He wouldnt stop acting drama in the church and he was asked to stop because drama is not in the Bible!

I seeDrama is not in the Bible!!!

“Although many of us dont agree with the leadership of the church ooo! Whether drama is in the Bible or not, I dont know, but anytime they act drama, we are always blessedMy brother, if something is blessing us, must we see it in the Bible?

Pastor Paul Alowolodu shook his head in agreement with the woman.

The woman gave him all the information he needed. He met Mike Bamiloye in a one-room apartment near The Urban Day Secondary School, Ondo Road. The search was not a difficult one, the woman had given a vivid description of the house and mentioned the name of the landlord who turned out to be a popular cocoa merchant in the area.

As soon as he introduced himself to Mike Bamiloye as a Pastor from Ilesha, they bonded quickly and began to speak the Ilesha dialect of the Yoruba language. The bond became thicker when he mentioned that he came on instruction from one Pastor Joju, an alumnus of the Oyo State College of Education who had watched stage drama titled “Hell in Conference” and “The Unprofitable Servant”

Bamiloye excused himself and stood at that moment, leaving Pastor Paul Alowolodu to gaze round the room. He saw pictures of different stage drama outreaches pasted on the wall of the room.

At a corner of the room was pasted the logo of the Mount Zion Drama Productions with the motto: “We Act in Faith A huge pile of books lay on the table with a hard cover exercise book opened to the middle. A piece of biro was dropped on the book Pastor Paul Alowolodu peeped and saw that Bamiloye was writing another drama script. He smiled and nodded with joy.

The room was poorly furnished but neatly arranged with a three-feet bed and a wooden wardrobe. A stove was neatly packed on top of a small cupboard while a stack of plastic buckets laid carefully between the bed and the cupboard.

Just then, Bamiloye entered with a cold bottle of Tandi Guarana for his guest.

Surprised, but thankful, Pastor Paul Alowolodu could not help gushing down the drink almost immediately Bamiloye opened and handed it over to him. The search for the church and Mikes house under the hot afternoon sun had left him exhausted and desperately in need of something cold. He thanked God that Mike was sensitive to know what he needed most at that time. On a second gush, the drink had reached half of its content.

“Hell in Conference!!! That was our first stage drama ministration” Mike Bamiloye said.

So I was told by Pastor Joju. He said he was part of the audience that watched the drama as a student on the campus and he was greatly blessed. The Unprofitable Servant was another drama that ministered to him tremendously as it led him to pick up God’s work immediately after leaving school Pastor Paul Alowolodu explained further.

To God be the Glory Mike Bamiloye smiled and lifted his hands to worship God.

He is presently a missionary at a town called Onigba-Iwofa” Alowolodu said and gushed the drink again emptying the content this time around. He sighed heavily and said Thank you very much for this Sir. You will never know thirst in Jesus name!!!

“Amen Onigba-Iwofa? Where is that in this Yorubaland? Bamiloye smiled and asked squeezing his face in complete ignorance of the name. He was hearing that name for the first time in his entire 25 years of life.

Onigba-Iwofa is about fifty kilometers from Shaki! Its a quiet town, sparsely populated but completely backward in amenities and social services. The road to Onigba-Iwofa is not good but motorable. According to Pastor Joju, it will take between five to six hours to get to Onigba-Iwofa from Ibadan

I seeOnigba-Iwofa

Yes, Onigba-Iwofa. Pastor Joju has asked me to invite you and your team to come over to Onigba-Iwofa for drama outreach. He believes a drama outreach will help his work at the town tremendously

Praise God!!! When does he want us to come? Bamiloye said smiling pleasantly. As he prayed that morning, the Lord had revealed to him that He has an assignment for him on a mission field.

He gave me the liberty to communicate and discuss with you expressly on the date and the terms of your coming. I will relate back to him in two days time when he will be in Shaki and have access to call me on the phone

The discussion was short. A weekend was agreed to and fixed. As Alowolodu stood to leave, he remembered an aspect of the discussion Bamiloye had not spoken about.

Brother Mike, you have not mentioned about the fee. How much do you charge? I need to let him know so that he can liaise immediately with the Headquarters to arrange for the funds to pay you when you and your team come Alowodu explained pleadingly.

Again Bamiloye smiled Pastor Alowolodu, we dont charge. We allow the Lord to lead the host to bless us as God providesThat is our policy

“Really? Alowodu could not believe what he heard. A team wants to travel from Ile-Ife to Onigba-Iwofa on a three-day ministerial journey without negotiating what it will cost to make such a journey.

Brother Mike, are you sure of what you are saying? Bamiloye smiled reassuringly. So how do you get to the Onigba-Iwofa in the first place? Alowodu asked.

The Lord will provide Pastor Bamiloyes response and his confident smile spoke volumes.

Alowodu stared blankly at Bamiloye unsure of what to say. His mind flashed back to the few times he had contacted some ministers on behalf of his church to invite them for ministrations. He remembered the case of a particular man of God who specifically mentioned the 4-star hotel he would like to be lodged in along with his retinue of aides and the kind of food they would eat. He also mentioned the amount of money he would collect as honourarium. Finally, he insisted that half of the offering he would raise at the programme belonged to him. By the time the church reviewed his demands, the council decided to go for another minister of God!

Although, Alowolodu was not expecting Bamiloye mention any huge amount, he least expected the response he got. It sounded too good to be true. That a minister of God will leave Ile-Ife for Onigba-Iwofa without a concrete assurance of what to expect as honourarium.

Sincerely, I dont know what to say Alowolodu’s delayed response came several seconds after.

Bamiloye smiled and said Just pray for us that the Lord will be glorified during the programmePlease tell Pastor Joju that we will come. He can start making publicity and other arrangements

What about accommodation Brother Mike? Alowolodu asked.

Wherever he provides for us is where we will stay The response from Bamiloye was prompt and sharp as if he had expected the question.

Awesome!!! Alowolodu appeared speechless. He thanked Bamiloye and announced his leaving. Bamiloye stood and escorted the visitor to the road outside his house. As they got to the gate of the one-storey building, Bamiloye squeezed a white envelope into Alowolodus hand and spoke into his ears.

“Please Sir, the Lord impressed it upon my heart to give this to you Sir

Ha!! Haaa!!! Why!!! You shouldnt be the one doing this!!! Alowolodu said.

Yes, I know Sir, I shouldnt be doing thisbut thats what the Lord impressed in my heart. Please allow me to obey Him Bamiloye explained almost apologetically.

Ok Brother Mike. Thank you so much. The Lord will honour your faith and cause a mighty harvest to come your way. Thank you so much

As Pastor Alowolodu prayed, streams of tears were already forming in his eyes. Apparently, Mike Bamiloye was completely unaware that his action was a prayer answered and a major relief for Alowolodu. He had come from Ilesha to Ile-Ife using the last money he had on him. He only trusted God that the fifteen naira he had left on him will be sufficient to take him back to Ilesha.

As soon as he entered the bus from Mayfair to Ilesha Garage where he was to board a car going to Ilesha, Alowolodu opened the envelope, eager to see what Bamiloye had put in the it. Neatly arranged in the envelope was a row of ten crispy new 50 naira notes.

Five hundred naira!!!! Alowolodu almost screamed!!! He gave me Five hundred naira!!!! The stream of tears gave way to a torrent of tears. He brought out a handkerchief and wiped the tears. He didnt want to cause a scene in the car.

Five hundred naira!!! The exact amount needed to pay the balance for a parcel of land his church had purchased and was gradually paying in instalments. It had taken the church six months to pay two thousand naira for the one-acre parcel of land. The balance of five hundred naira was needed to take possession of the land. He closed his eyes again and prayed for Bamiloye.
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