©️Opeyemi Ojerinde Akintunde

Eight months had passed and Ola was drawing close to her Expected Day Of Delivery. She had successfully hidden the pregnancy from her siblings. For those eight months, she did not give them the address of her new place. She tried to do video calls with them occasionally where all she did was smile back.

Ope had complimented her on several occasions that she was becoming fat and fresh.

Sukki on the other hand had been indoctrinated into the new lifestyle of the Church he joined after leaving Pastor Ayo. He had been taught that “All his sins in the past, the present one he was committing and the ones he was going to commit in the future had been taken care of”. Sukki therefore was able to continue in the sin of fornication once in a while.

However, the church made dissecting the Word very important. In 8 months, Sukki had read the New Testament 2 times. He was told the Old Testament wasn’t important.

The Senior Pastor of the Church particularly liked Sukki and in no time, he had made Sukki the youth leader. He had given Sukki a three bedroom flat and a car. The Senior pastor encouraged Sukki to go back to school, and with his connections, Sukki gained admission to do a part time course in one of the State Universities. Sukki was so happy he had found a place where he could serve God and his sin; past and present was not a big deal.

His pastor advised him to go home to see his father.

Sukki travelled back to his father’s place but met a bad news. His father had been hospitalized for about two weeks…

Ola had been having serious contractions for days. She had been in and out of labor for two days. At that point she had sent a message to her siblings as she noticed she was losing strength. Oba and Ope were shocked to see Ola pregnant. Ope kept proclaiming curses on Sukki. She wished she knew his identity.

Ola gave birth after 26 hours of painful labor. She gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, but suddenly she started bleeding uncontrollably…She passed out.

Meanwhile, Sukki was in the same hospital visiting his father. His father was happy to see him after 8 months…

“ Father, I am sorry for my absence. I met Jesus and I was scared you would disown me …”

“ Hmmm… Jesus… Destiny can not be averted!” Sukki’s father had said

“ What do you mean Father? Sukki asked

“ Hmmm Ifasunkanmi, Even as a herbalist, your mother and I had delay in childbearing for 15 years. Your mother got tired of the concoctions I was giving her and without my permission started attending a Pentecostal church far away from us. In 1 year of attending the church, she got Pregnant and by prophecy the pastor had told her the baby in her womb would become a pastor and own a big church. So if you have started following Jesus, I am not surprised…” Sukki’s father had said…

“ Me, a pastor?” Sukki reasoned quietly.

He spent a short time with his father and paid the necessary bills.

As he stepped out and saw Ope. He froze on the spot, he thought Ope was Ola. He didn’t realize Ola was a twin. He was surprised she didn’t recognize him, but he thought it was possible she was rushing out to get something… She looked worried…

Sukki stepped back to the reception to find out what her problem was..

“Her twin sister was bleeding after giving birth and she just passed out. The bleeding has stopped but she is yet to gain consciousness.” A nurse said

“ Can I see her please, I am a Christian.. I would love to pray for her.”

The nurse initially refused but on a second thought, she took him there. Sukki saw Ola lying unconsciously with oxygen plugged into her nose. Sukki sat beside her and knew this was strawberry.

“ How come she gave birth? Was she pregnant after my intercourse with her?” Sukki reasoned silently

Sukki knelt beside her praying for her. He prayed with tears flowing from his eyes. He begged God to please restore the life of the innocent girl…

After about 15 minutes of groaning in prayers, Ope and Oba came in. They didn’t know who the stranger was, but they joined him in the prayer.

Sukki decided to end the prayer. As he stood up, he introduced himself as Pastor Sunkanmi. He said he had heard about her from the nurses at the reception and out of compassion he had come to pray for her.

Oba and Ope expressed their appreciation. Sukki asked for Oba’s phone number as a way of checking up on Strawberry later. They both exchanged numbers.

Sukki stepped out and when he got into the car, he wept sore.

“ If only his parents had trained him up in the way of the Lord, if only someone had taught him about God, maybe His life would have turned out better…”

At that point, he felt he knew what he had to do…

He was going to start up his own church to train and teach people the right way. He had learnt enough from his pastor in eight months…

©️Opeyemi Ojerinde Akintunde

25 years had passed and all the past sorrows had been forgotten…

Ola was married to Micheal from her University and Sunmibare was having her graduation ceremony that beautiful morning. Ola stood in front of her bedroom mirror with tears flowing as she flashed her mind back to how wonderful the journey had been….

25 years earlier…

After Sukki had prayed for Ola on the hospital bed, not only did she regain consciousness, but she recovered her voice.

Ola on waking up started talking, she was elated. Ope and Oba’s joy knew no bounds as they started proclaiming blessings on the strange pastor who had prayed for Ola. They had forgotten Sunkanmi’s name so they casually told Ola, it was a random pastor.

Sunmibare as a baby was a beauty to behold. She was CUTE.

Ola decided to keep Sunmibare. She only called Mrs Banke to inform her she had given birth…

“ Are you the one speaking to me?” Mrs Banke had asked

“ Yes ma, After I gave birth to Sunmibare, I fell into coma. I was told a pastor had come to pray for me. So, On waking up , my voice was restored.”

“ Halleluya! I am happy to hear from you, so, the baby…?” Mrs Banke had asked

“ That’s why I called,I have decided to keep her and raise her up… I am sorry ma…”

“ It’s okay… She is your daughter”.

Mrs Banke had dropped the call. She had wept sore. She had nursed high hopes that Ola would give her the child after delivery. That was why she had maintained close relationship with her for the 8 months before her delivery. Though they didn’t see face to face, but they communicated through chats.

Ola had taken Sunmibare and her siblings to her apartment for the first time.

In the course of the eight months, Ola had worked faithfully with her Landlady, which made her landlady to place her on a monthly salary. It was her landlady who had taken her to the clinic and when the labour was becoming painful, she had encouraged Ola to inform her siblings about the situation of things…

The landlady on Ola’s return had taken over the responsibility of helping her with Sunmibare.

For two years, Ola had served the landlady, before the landlady relocated to Ghana to go stay with one of her children who was established there. Before the Landlady left, she had called Ola to her room…

“ Kikiolaoluwa, you came into my life and made a lonely old woman like me lively once again. Thank you so much, but Aderonke, my daughter in Ghana wants me to come over to her place. She said she doesn’t like the idea of me stressing myself in my old age. She wants me to come over so she can take good care of me , especially my legs…”

“ Ha! Maami “ Ola had said in disappointment. Her new Landlady had become a mother to her…

“ Yes, kikiolaoluwa, but I have something I want to give you… You have served me well, so I want you to take over the Egg business. Right now, the business worths N1.2 million naira. I know you don’t have up to that, but if you can gather up to N500, 000. I will sell it to you….”

Ola only had N324,000 with her as she was the one who was helping her siblings through school. At that point, Oba and Ope were writing their final exams. Through Ola’s work with the Landlady, She had helped Oba and Ope complete their fees. She was the one who took care of their feeding and other fees. She also had to take care of Sunmibare. She therefore had only N324,000.

The N324,000 was actually an accumulation of funds from different sources; her personal savings from the salary the landlady had been giving her for close to 2 years, tips from appreciative customers, the landlady’s children and most importantly from Micheal…

After Ola had given birth to Sunmibare, the news reached the school as some students had seen Ola in the market strapping Sunmibare to her back. Different rumors kept flying in the school, some speculated she was married, others said she was into prostitution.

Micheal had approached Ope for the truth about what happened, he believed a selfless girl like Ola could not go into prostitution. Rather than tell Micheal the truth, Ope gave Micheal Ola’s number.

Micheal had contacted Ola and Ola knowing how he had helped in the past invited him over to the Landlady’s Egg shop. Ola narrated all she had been through and afterwards a genuine friendship started.

When the Landlady demanded for N500,000, she knew it was only Micheal she could call on. Micheal had helped her pay up the balance.

That was the beginning of Ola’s Sucess story, despite all she had been through….

Ope on the Otherhand, had pursued her music career with strong determination. Ola became her sponsor. Ola who had become very wealthy through her business pumped in money into Ope’s music career. After 10 years , Ope had become a household name. However, she was into mainstream music, which Ola was not particularly happy with… She showed too much nudity in her videos…

Ope had changed her name to “ Sexy Sasha”. She was always topping the charts with her music as Ope was very hardworking. She gave her music zeal and hardwork.

Oba on the other hand had also turned out successful, he had gone into politics and after 20 years of active politics, he became one of the youngest Senators in the country.

God had indeed helped the trio.

As Ola stood in front of her mirror, she quietly said….

“ Thank you Lord for the Journey”

Micheal walked up behind her…

“ You are beautiful my love, you don’t have to spend all the time in front of the mirror…” Micheal had said

Ola smiled and said “ I am not checking out my beauty, I am just checking out that small helpless girl who God has helped to this point!”

“ Well, thank God, but you will need to keep checking her out, because she hasn’t become the best she was made to be… I still see great things coming out from her. Right now, she ranks 7th richest woman in Nigeria, she still needs to hit the THE RICHEST WOMAN IN AFRICA…”

Tears flowed from Ola’s eyes as she didn’t know why God decided to bless her with Micheal. He had been the best thing that happened to her. After she had bought the egg business from her landlady, he had pumped money into the business for her…He was the only son of a wealthy businessman.

They had gotten married after 3 years of being friends and they had 3 other kids together.

“My doctor will be unhappy with us if we are late for her graduation “ Micheal was saying. He was referring To Sunmibare. Sunmibare was graduating from the university with a First Class honors in Medical Science.

“ Big mummy 1, Big mummy 2 said you should come to the living room in a hurry” Oba’s son had rushed into Ola’s room…

Oba’s son, Josiah referred to Ola as Big mummy 1, while Ope as Big mummy 2….

Ope and Oba with their respective immediate families were seated in the living room all dressed to go for Sunmibare’s graduation. As Ola walked into the living room, Ope said…

“ Ola, this is the pastor, that prayed for you at the hospital when you lost your voice, he is the new pastor who came in from Las Vegas to establish his church in Nigeria…” Ope said pointing to a handsome looking pastor on the screen…

Ola froze to the spot….