Morgue Chronicles

I was at the Morgue today; 5 minutes ago to be precise. Today’s trip was different though. I wasn’t going to the cafeteria to buy food neither was I there looking for a nice spot to go pray. All I’d wanted was a nice solitary bench where I could sit alone in silence. Well not exactly in silence because my earphones was busy pumping music into my eardrums and I wasn’t alone since God was right there the entire time.

I found a bench right behind a Bus parked and close enough to the river. I must admit, the whole time I was there I kept fearing the bench would topple over and I’d end up in that river that looked more like a flowing sewage (yup, cleaning up this river in the Capital City doesn’t seem like a priority for our government). I was relieved that the bus hid me properly, I needed that privacy when the tears returned.

I sat there desperately looking for distraction but social media offered all but the social bit today. So I was forced to deal with whatever brought me there.

I looked around and it dawned on me that those people at the Lobby or hanging around cars as they waited for the bodies of their loved ones to be released, would be us people pretty soon. Suddenly their pain resonated with my pain. Yes we all experience grief in varying degrees but there it dawned on me that pain in whatever form should not be belittled. Someone else’s pain might be greater than yours; understandably so, but don’t let that keep you from mourning.

In no time the tears followed. It’s been hard holding them back today. Of course I have enough questions but I leave those ones for his family to ask; God already has enough of those coming from them and I will not disturb him with more.

There were birds around I suspect, I am sure I heard them at one point or the other when they weren’t muffled by the sounds of cars passing by and the flowing sewage… I mean river, below. I did not hear mourners at the Morgue wailing; no silence reigned today. Not because they weren’t in pain, but today, their pain was borne silently within but it shouted at those of us outside. Their silent pain was too loud to ignore.

In this morgue a variety of people meet- those doing their work hired inside, those taking care of the security outside, those running their cafeteria business, those who came looking for what the cafeteria offered; but the lot that stands out the most: those who have come to begin their final goodbye.

The one thing you won’t fail to pick from here, is how fleeting life is. Life is fragile and has no guarantees.

There were 3 sick people that were the cause of my anxiety yesterday; one is no more today.

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Dear Jonah

You’re probably on the run now. You’re done, you’re tired. You feel a little betrayed. You know how this story would turn out so you will not allow yourself to go through the disappointment or even public humiliation. You can’t afford to believe when you know your hopes will be shattered… again! So you choose to go furthest from where God wants you.

You are hurt, yes you are. Carrying wounds from all the hopes you had, faith in things turning out exactly as He said and despair from the countless disappointments. You know how it’s like to hear from God yet after doing as expected, the results were different. Maybe it’s the jobs you felt Him leading you to apply for, maybe it’s that relationship you got into after praying enough but it left you broken and disoriented. It could be precious friendships brought only to be taken away. Or possibly all the prayers and faith for healing which you thought you experienced but somehow, the same thing is back or something different and worse. How about the prayers you made about school but despite praying and reading; those bad grades keep coming back.

The truth you might not know or are avoiding to confront is that you are wounded and probably feel a little betrayed by God. Oh none of us will quickly admit to being mad at God or feeling like He’s disappointed you enough that you’re hesitant to trust Him with things you hold dear. If you look carefully, you might see how your heart felt slightly stabbed each time you trusted Him with something but it didn’t work out. Yes you know He’s good and said that it is well because He’s in control. What you didn’t know is that each time that happened and you didn’t deal with it adequately, it hurt you deeper and deeper unknowingly. Now you’re like a wounded puppy in a corner and do not want to be touched.

Too many of us carry such pain over time. Yes hope deferred make the heart sick (Proverbs 13:12) and it’s okay to get to the point where you acknowledge what you feel. It could be haboured anger or pain. However it manifests, know that running is not a permanent solution.

Eventually you’ll find yourself drowning in deep dark waters and when that fish swallows you, you’ll have to confront everything and make peace with God.

You see, I know how you feel and I will not condemn your running; whether your running is having left church or being there following the motions yet your heart is detached or simply being in a place where you still do everything expected of a ‘good christian’ but it’s routine stuff.

It’s okay to go through all this. It’s in such a place that you see things you’d never have seen before. You learn that God isn’t threatened by your questions or your doubts. In fact He likes them because you get to walk through it and finally have strong reasons for your faith; He takes you through them and helps you find the answers you need or the peace required when answers are not there.

In that place is where you get to see the beauty of grace, mercy and love. Redemption no longer is a word thrown about but a real experience. You see a God who picks you each time even when you don’t deserve it. Most of all, you’ll see the Hound of Heaven in action; beautifully and constantly pursuing you. He will follow you to the destination you ran off to. He will be there when you’re in the raging waters of the storm. He will send the help you need in form of a big fish and He will be right there in the belly of that fish when you have those conversations you need.

In the end, you will see that running far away from where you were supposed to go, will still lead you right back where you were supposed to be. Sometimes it’s in running that we find ourselves and get to where we need to be.

*Story from the Book of Jonah in the Bible

Purpose For The Pain

I met someone over the weekend; not the kind of someone you think 🙂

The kind of person who puts plenty into perspective. Meaning is found for queries long unanswered. This particular one was a girl in high school. We were at their school all weekend and I had missed students’ ministry. We had just finished facilitating a session for all the girls who wanted to become lawyers. She followed me as we walked out. I didn’t mind; as a matter of fact, I absolutely love those one-on-one conversations.

I initially assumed it was a career related issue since that’s what we were discussing. Wrong. Turns out, while we were winding up, I mentioned how my coming this far sincerely took God and hinted at the crazy health drama I’ve had. That’s the part that got her attention.

She begins to speak and I it feels like she stole the script from the story of my life. She sounds kinda like me and our personalities are too similar; but this wasn’t it yet. She starts to explain all the health issues she’s had. No way! She’s literally stating all the areas of my body that I’ve had trouble with. I listen to her almost speechless. This is more than unbelievable! She’s in tears and I’m almost following suit but I hold them back.

I can’t recall most of what I told her afterwards but I narrated my issues as well and we exchanged experiences that had left us emotionally drained, mentally overwhelmed and on the verge of despair. Things that people around us probably never get. The relief! Seeing that in this world, it’s possible to have someone who truly understands the very lengths, breadths and heights of your pain. Needless to say, we hit it off and became friends.

As I was reflecting on this later, I got thinking that if this was all the purpose to my pain, then it was worth it. Sharing my story with someone who was living it as well and encouraging her to not give up because I too was making it through. Being there to remind each other that all the dark days and all the tears, were not for nothing.

We might never fully see the purpose our tears, break downs, valleys and unbearable moments accomplished; but rest in this darling: it wasn’t pointless. God never wastes our pain. Someone somewhere will survive what you’re going through just because of your story. Hold on, fight through; it sure is worth it.

Tears For Breakfast

Table is set

Heavy thoughts line it up well,

Despair provides a lovely cover.

The appetizer first

Pretty pink and white pill,

More thoughts to wash it down.

Frustration, heartache, despondence

Make a balanced diet.

Pop out those flavours

A dash of salt will do

Yes, salt in fluid form.

Drown that with music

As you nibble on tea and bread.

But that’s just the cover up

In reality it is evident

Tears were your breakfast.

A Letter to You

Hi,

You with the wounds; deep or shallow. You who’s clothed with despair. You whose heart is tired. You who’s hoped and hoped and been disappointed one too many times. You who’s been looking at other people flourishing in their happiness and wondering when your turn will come. You who’s been hurt severely or mildly. You on the verge of giving up. You who always comes so close but the happiness you chase keeps being elusive.

Your pain is legit, your despair is understandable, your fears are founded and you are worth grieving over. Don’t let anyone belittle what you feel; not even your own self. Allow yourself to feel all this at this moment.

However, down in those ashes of despair is not where you belong; that pit of pain isn’t your abode; that dark cell where you’re covering your wounds is not your permanent place. After the dark night, day dawns; don’t miss your sunrise.

You, right in the place you are, are loved. You are worth caring about. You may be knocked down but you’re not out. Take His hand, let Him gently pull you out of the pit. Lay your heart bare, let His love wash over your wounds and be your healing. Move away from that cell’s door; His rays of hope want to burst in and flush out despair.

You are loved; your wounds are legit but they can be healed. You are loved; yes your hope was genuinely lost but it’s a new day. You are loved; you feel rejected you but what they didn’t give you, they can’t take away; your acceptance was from Him. You are loved; broken as you are, He makes you whole. You are loved; disappointments of the past are not a forecast of the future. You are loved; nothing can take that away

Allow yourself to be loved and embrace the truth of that love until you live it fully.

The Impossible

​Friday 25th November 2016:

Spent most of the day in bed on the edge of depression. Sometimes it felt like I’d climb down that cliff a little, then climb right back to the edge. Teeter tottering.

Something akin to a panic attack would creep in then leave me be.

Why wouldn’t that judgment just come quickly? What if the judge didn’t rule in our favour and come Monday, we’d still do those exams? Maybe suing the Council of Legal Education wasn’t the best idea; maybe we should have simply focused on reading for those Bar exams and gave up on seeking justice.
By the time I realised we weren’t going to win, I felt BETRAYED! How on earth would God give me so much peace yet He knew all hell was about to break loose? Why didn’t He intervene? He knew how much I’d been through and how reading had been almost impossible. Why wouldn’t He make a way and have the exams at least postponed for even two weeks? He knew there was absolutely no way I’d sit for those exams because I had nothing to write.
By evening, I was glad my friend had planned for us to have coffee on this day. This would be a much needed distraction; at least God knew what He was doing when He allowed me to agree to this, days before I knew how badly I’d need it.
Got myself to town and had one of the longest coffee dates I’ve ever been out on with any friend. By the time I was done, I felt encouraged and with a new resolve to make use of the weekend and not to defer my exams. Maybe I can do this.
Then God reminded me of the previous day: Thursday was nothing short of a miracle! I’d gotten a job in a way I couldn’t explain and after an interview I’d never anticipated. It was relaxed and brief. Before I knew it, I had a job and had not been asked anything people normally get answered. In fact it felt like a meet and greet: getting to see the person who you’d picked for the job. I was in awe of God! 
The God of Thursday was still the God of Friday.
Long story short, Monday came and the two weeks of exams were probably the hardest two weeks of my life! Clearly, I hadn’t seen anything yet when I thought that all hell had already broken loose. I was sick on each day and every morning and evening, I would quit, cry and be on the verge of depression again. I even got food poisoning on each week, which was crazy since I only had food poisoning once, 14 years ago! Each day I’d cry and tell God how impossible it was and that He was demanding of me something I couldn’t do. 
But every morning without fail, God would pick me up and hold me in His arms each night. In every paper He’d flood me with peace that didn’t make sense. Each day He’d remind me that my battle was in showing up, not in what I wrote on that paper. Then to ensure I had no room to quit, He put people who would call or text me morning and at night. 
From yesterday, I’ve been hearing more stories of people God had burdened to pray for me during those two weeks. People who didn’t have to but they still remembered me when they talked to God. Different people in different places who God used to set up what I have come to see as my biggest miracle this far. 

This exact Latitude and Longitude


I came across this statement while listening to Margaret Feinberg  a lady who God has used to encourage me severally. The question she asked God was this: “has anyone praised you at this very latitude and longitude?”. At that moment she was under an MRI machine getting a scan. This was right in the middle of her battle with cancer.

How do you even get to thanking or praising God in the midst of your darkest moments? I’ve always been amazed by Job when I read about his reaction immediately after he lost everything. I imagined I’d also be inspired to do the same. Well, let’s just say that when you’re the one on the spot, that’s easier said than done.

This past week wasn’t easy at all. I had been busy trying to come to terms with a diagnosis the doctor gave me. There were numerous changes to be made and that alone was overwhelming me. Then the drugs came with their own side effects until I got to a point where taking them would almost depress me.

Speaking of which, as the week started, anxiety and depression kept threatening. Spent almost two days locked up in the house and mostly in bed. I cried enough during that time. The symptoms of whatever I was diagnosed with were taking a toll on me. It was all too much to bear. Now to add salt to the injury, I had exams to prepare for! How on earth would I even study in the midst of all this?

Well, one day at a time, that’s what I decided to do. Then I made it for midweek bible study and I came back all fired up and having my faith revived. I was determined to trust God no matter how things looked. I had just learnt how faith is a journey to God not a journey to results. I was going to believe in God whether I saw results or not.

That was until I got back only to discover some other health complication had arisen. The next morning I woke up feeling like I couldn’t take it anymore. How is one person supposed to handle all that? After plenty of conversations with God, I somehow got the strength to even go for a meeting across town. Things were finally looking up and I had such a great time.

The next day, I was back to square one. Feeling quite dejected, I figured I might as well defer my exams and do them next year. I didn’t have the energy or grace to handle health issues and their drama as well as manage to study for the Bar exams. Thankfully, by the end of that day, I’d gotten enough encouragement to change my mind.

So today, my main question to God as the day started was, how does faith look like in this current situation? How would He want my faith to look like? Secondly, how do I genuinely praise you when no part of me feels like it? I wanted to know how I could practically do that.

I realised that sometimes, all it takes is getting out of bed. Other times, it’s that feeble ‘thank you’ to God because you are down but not out. Sometimes it’s a tearful prayer accompanied by sobs or even flowing tears when words won’t come. It could be listening to that playlist that explains best how you feel or the one that God uses to get you out of despair. Maybe even dragging yourself around and doing what needs to be done in spite of everything. Most of all, it means taking your eyes off the circumstances threatening you and fixing your gaze on He who has power over everything.

Therefore, in this latitude where I can’t even eat onions or garlic (goodness, how’s food to taste without those!), I’m grateful I can still use tomatoes and carrots. In this longitude where the future seems bleak, I’m glad I still have this present moment and an assurance that He’ll never leave me nor forsake me. In this exact place, I thank God that inasmuch as I don’t comprehend (or like) any of this; He promises that it will work out for my good. 

A smooth sea never made a skillful sailor. So when storms rise up, be happy. This pain, loss, sickness, heartache or whatever hurt; not only will it pass eventually, but you’ll be stronger because of it.

We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.

(2 Corinthians 4:8-9 NLT)