Yesterday I got on a wrong train.
I had just finished speaking at a seminar somewhere in London. I was tired and distracted. I was also in a hurry to catch a connecting train which was pre-booked. I was on the right platform waiting for my train. When this train pulled up I thought it was the right train and got on.
Ten minutes into the journey I discovered my mistake. I studied the map and the direction the train was headed, I didn’t recognise ANY stops.
I was in trouble.
To tell you the truth, for a moment I was anxious. All kinds of crazy thoughts ran through my mind.
Where is the destination of this train?
How far is it from where I wanted to go?
What area of the city was it going? Was it a dangerous part of the city?
I was concerned because it was getting late. I wore a suit and carried some luggage. Wearing a suit in the wrong part of town, at night, would make me a target that could not be ignored.
If you got on a wrong train in New York, you better start praying because the NYC subway is very confusing. People who have lived in New York for a few years tell you that it can be confusing.
Fortunately for me this happened in London.
I studied the underground map on the train to see in what direction the train was headed and how to correct my mistake and get on the right train.
As I studied the map, I found a station I recognised. I wasn’t very sure if it was the same station I knew or this was another one with a similar name.
Now there was hope.
For the next twenty minutes I rode on this train knowing that I wasn’t supposed to be on it, knowing that I was headed in the wrong direction, knowing that it was a waste of my time, but there was nothing I could do about it. I was uncomfortable in my seat. All kinds of thoughts ran through my mind as I sat there. How will the journey end, I wondered. My fellow travelers had no idea what was going on in my mind. They probably wondered why I got up so many times to study the map above my head. Continue reading
Mom and I were at the Saturday market in Epe town. She bought some pepper, onions and spices. Our next stop was the fish market which was by the lagoon. Some fishermen tied their boats to the wooden pier and brought in their catch for the day to the market. We stopped by the table of a young woman selling fish, crabs and snails. Mom pointed at some fish and the fish seller set them aside. While mom haggled with the fish seller, I looked around at the other fish sellers in the market. Out of the corner of my eye I noticed an elderly woman watching me. She regarded me for a while, then she stood up and started walking towards me. As she got closer to me, she kept her gaze on me and it made me uncomfortable. I moved close to mom and held her hand.
The woman came over to where we stood but her eyes never left me. There was something about her eyes. I had seen that look before when I read dad’s books about the southern parts of the country, where the oil companies had damaged the ecosystem, poisoning millions of fish with oil spills, turning fertile farmlands into a dark, depressing, barren wilderness. The woman grinned at me but her eyes were cold, lifeless, like…dead fish.
The woman spoke almost in a whisper. “Good morning.” She pointed her head at me. “Do you know that your daughter is from the sea?”
Mom regarded the woman in silence.
“Do you know that they want her back?”
The fish seller handed over mom’s fish purchase and mom dropped it inside her market bag. Mom gave me a ‘shut-your-mouth look,’ then began walking away from the woman. But the woman followed and caught up with us.
“Is what I am telling you strange?” the woman asked.
Mom looked around to see if anyone was listening to what the woman was saying. Nobody seemed to pay us any attention.
Mom’s face was creased with concern. “Why won’t you people just leave me alone? What do you want from me?” mom asked.
“I do not want anything from you. I wanted to let you know that if you do not return her, there will be consequences,” the woman whispered.
Mom seized the woman by the hand. “Have I not suffered enough? What consequences are you talking about? When will this torment come to an end?”
The woman was silent.
“Please tell me how to stop this. I have suffered a lot because of my daughter. It has been one calamity after another. My husband left me when he found out that she was a gift from the ocean goddess. What should I do?”
The woman regarded mom with some intensity. “Your daughter is too powerful to live with you.”
Mom looked confused. “You keep talking about her powers but she has never shown any powers. She is a normal child,” mom lied. Mom knew I had some powers. She knew this since the day I brought in a squid into the house.
The woman knelt down on one knee so that our eyes were on the same level. “Lara, you speak to fish, don’t you? I know you do. They know you are here. They feel you. They hear you.” She stood up and spread her hands towards the fish market. “Speak to them.” Continue reading
Water Girl. Chapter 1.
The first time it happened I was five years old. I was playing in the garden with my dolls. I was surrounded by the sweet scent of jasmine and rose. Mangoes pregnant with ripeness, were weighing down the branches of the mango tree, pulling them to the ground. I stood up, grabbed a mango, changed my mind and returned to my dolls. I wiped the sweat of my brow with the edge of my pink dress. Mom had told me not to do that again, but I did it. I heard a noise and I looked up. It was like a screen opened before my eyes and I entered another dimension. The garden disappeared and I saw a wall of water towering above me. I looked up at it in wonder. I was not scared, rather I was curious and reached out to touch it. The water poured over me and I was submerged in it. It felt strange but I was breathing normally under the water. I saw sea creatures I had never seen before, even in my story books. I bent down to pick up my dolls but couldn’t find them. I turned around and that was when I realised that the house was no longer behind me. I called out for mom. Moments later I woke up with mom and dad kneeling beside me. Mom was crying. “They have come to take away my daughter from me,” she said. “My enemies have come to take her away,” she wept.
Dad said nothing. His eyes were alert behind his glasses. He had a puzzling expression on his face. He took off his glasses and wiped the sweat on his face with the back of his hand. He knelt down beside me and asked me a question.
“Lara, how did you get your clothes wet?” he looked around the garden searching for the source of the water. He didn’t find it. He turned his gaze back on me.
Until he asked me that question I had not paid attention to my dress. I looked down at my dress and it was dripping with water. I had this strange urge to lick my lips. My lips were plastered with salt. I stood up and looked around me. It looked like the sea visited me in the garden and when it retreated, it left memories of itself behind. Seaweeds hung from the mango tree, twisted around the fruits and littered the ground. There were blue, green, white, orange coloured sea shells on the spot where I had been playing with my dolls. The strong smell of sand and salt hung in the air around us. The strange thing was that we lived five miles away from the ocean. My parents took me inside the house and changed my clothes. The garden was cleaned and we never spoke about that incidence again. Then another one happened.
One day I ran into the house with excitement and showed mom what I had found as I played in the garden. Mom took a look at it and screamed. Dad ran into the sitting room, saw what was in my hand and stopped in his tracks. It was a squid, alive and wriggling in my hands. Dad took it away from me. He put it in a bucket of water, drove all the way to the lagoon and released it into the water. When he returned, dad sat me down beside him on the largest chair in the sitting room and asked me several questions which I could not answer. How did I get the squid? Where did it come from? Did someone give it to me? Did I leave the house at any time to play in the street? My parents must have come to the conclusion that their questions were futile.
Several incidents later, my parents were advised by some of their friends to seek spiritual help for my situation. They tried some churches but got tired of the pastors pushing me down to make me give up my powers. They decided to take me to a juju priest who lived in the forest. We drove outside Lagos, parked our car in a village and were led by two men into the forest. After an hour of following them through narrow forest paths, we arrived at the hut of a juju priest. It was built on a large clearing in the forest. The priest made me sit before him on the earthen floor while he consulted the oracle. He held some cowries stringed together by a white thread. He threw them on the floor before him. After looking at the cowries for several minutes, the expression on his face began to change into concern. He shook his head and glanced at me in disbelief. Finally he set the cowries aside with trembling hands. He looked up at my parents with terror in his eyes.
“I cannot help you. This is beyond me. Take this child away and leave my house,” he said. My mom quickly grabbed my hand and pulled me up. As we left the hut, he shouted after us. “And do not bring her back here.” Continue reading
How To Turn Water Into Wine.
Hello everyone. How are you doing today? I want to share with you this message the Lord dropped in my heart: how to turn water into wine.
The very first miracle that Jesus performed was at a wedding ceremony in Cana of Galilee. Being the very first miracle he performed, it will give us an insight into how Jesus operates, how he performs miracles and how we can align ourselves with his will to experience those same miracles in our lives.
There was an invitation.
Jesus was invited to the wedding. John 2:2, Now Jesus and his disciples were invited to the wedding.
It all begins with an invitation. An invitation is a powerful thing. An invitation gives you access to a place, to a person or to an event. In this instance Jesus was given an invitation to attend a wedding. An invitation is one of the protocols that heaven observes before it steps into the affairs of men. God does not show up in our lives unless and until he is given an invitation. The Psalmist said in Psalm 115:15, The highest heavens belong to the Lord, but the earth He has given to mankind. The earth belongs to men. For God to be an integral part of our lives, we have to be intentional about giving him an invitation. Continue reading
“It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.'” Matthew 21:13.
The Lord said my house shall be called a house of prayer.
Not a house of music,
Not a house of breakthrough,
Not a house of prosperity,
Not a house of success,
Not a house of miracles,
Not a house of millionaires,
But a house of prayer.
It is a house of prayer because God wants to have a strong connection, intimacy and communion with his children.
If his house is a house of prayer, why is it that we do everything else in it but pray? Why is it that we have turned his house into a house of merriment and entertainment? Continue reading
Filed under Prayer, Teaching
Your Success is Tied To People.
Hello everyone. Welcome to 2019.
The difference between where you are today and where you want to be is people.
The difference between what you achieved in 2018 and what you could have achieved is people. The difference between the impact you have made in real terms and what you are really capable of is the people you have in your life.
There were some things you planned to accomplish in 2018 but you could not because you couldn’t find the right people to help you birth your dream or the people you found were a very bad match for you. Instead of helping you pursue your dream, they constituted an obstacle and a hindrance on your way.
Everyone has a horror story in their dealings with people. There were people who came into your life and you thought they were coming to help, support you but they turned out to be fiends; they betrayed and disappointed you in such a way you never contemplated possible. They came in as angels but left as demons. Continue reading
Hello everyone. How are you doing?
When someone tells you to ‘Stay in your lane,’ you should ask yourself these questions:
Does this person know you well enough to make this statement?
Was that person present when God gave you your assignment?
Is that person now monitoring your life as if he or she would reward you for what you do right or punish you for your errors?
When you step out to pursue something new, when you dare to pursue a dream, when you break out of your mould to do something different with your life, there will always be people who who think it is their God given assignment to keep you in the place where they think you belong. Continue reading