Lisa agreed and promised to start immediately. Pastor Helen prayed for them after exhorting them from the Bible. As they walked towards their house from where she had parked her car, they met a dog barking at them furiously. Lisa was annoyed when she saw its owner talking with another man. When Charlie couldn’t stand the barking dog blocking their way, he picked a stone. The owner ran towards them cursing him for his attempt to stone his dog. The man threatened to deal with him but Lisa challenged him to take it up and told him the implication of letting loose his dog in such environment.
The man left with his dog and made a racist remark. When Lisa wanted to retaliate, she heard a gentle voice behind her to sheath her sword of vengeful words. She looked behind her but saw no one as her children had gone inside. She felt peace in her heart and knew it was the voice of the Holy Spirit. Debby had shared with her how to hear and know the voice of God from the book of Isaiah chapter 30 verse 21,
“And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.”
Lisa had desired to know God intimately and follow him. She was amazed how she got that strength and courage not to retaliate against the man. Lisa thanked God for his help after she had prayed with her children. Anne looked sober as she sat on the sofa like a stranger. Charlie sat on the armchair with his eyes glued to his favourite program on the television while their mother was in the kitchen preparing the lunch.
“Anne! Anne!!” Lisa called.
She was lost in thought. She called again but there was no response. She removed her apron and came to the living room. She squinted because of the ray of sunlight and sat beside her daughter.
“Anne, are you alright? I have called you twice.”
“Oh really? I’m sorry Mum. What do you want me to do?”
“Why do you look so tired? You don’t have to worry again. God has delivered you and your freedom is certain. Is that Ok?” Lisa rose up to go but Anne gently pulled her back.
“Mum, why is everything looking gloomy in our lives? Dad is not here, Tony is dead, I have gone through the valley of death during these seven years, you are lonely and regretting your past mistakes. I have been tormented in my dreams and struggled in life. I had thought it was normal until I began to hear some strange voices whenever I was tired. Mum, do you know the man who placed the Idol on my chest?”
“I can’t remember again but I know the Man who set you free from that bondage. I know the Man who redeemed my life from the power of sin. I know the Man who brought you into my life again after seven years. I know the Man who is turning our gloomy situation into a glorious testimony. I know the Man who is holding our hands along the corridors of shadow of death into His palace of manifold blessings. My dear daughter, be cheerful for God is on our side. Do you know what I have discovered during this short period of our reunion? God cares for us and longs for us to call upon him.”
“You are right, Mum. I think Pastor Helen is an angel in my life. I have attended this church once and God’s mercy located me. Dad never bothered to talk about God or showed me the right path to follow. Seven years in isolation! Seven years without any moral training! Seven years without you, Mum!” She hugged her mother and wept over her shoulders.
They were still in that mood when Charlie shouted,
“London bridge is burning down…burning down…burning down…”
Lisa ran to the kitchen to attend to the rice which had waited to be put down but decided to embrace the excess heat and got burnt in the process. Anne’s countenance shone brighter as she helped her mother in the kitchen. One of the benefits of her separation from her mother was the opportunity to train herself in the art of cooking through YouTube and books.
“Mum, I promise to bake cake tomorrow. Just be prepared to bite your tongue.” They laughed together.
Lisa was encouraged by her cooking skills and her willingness to learn more. She shared a story of one of her friends while studying in Australia
“Rosemary was eager to get married to her longtime friend and we were so thrilled. One of us suggested she should master the art of wetting his appetite to enjoy the moment of intimacy together in bed and another advised her to learn how to carry his in-laws along with wisdom and understanding. She welcomed those ideas and worked at them. However, I pointed out the crucial part of man’s life and the children. She snubbed me by telling me she won’t cook but rely solely on fast foods.”
“Why? Why is cooking aspect a bone of contention among some women? I have read and heard about it. So, what happened?” Anne asked curiously.
“Both of them are Ghanians and the last time she contacted me was when the heat of separation was burning because she couldn’t cook or do household chores. Her husband worked in a big financial institution and comes home at night. When pizza and bread became the only foods in the house, he opted for separation. Her eyes got opened and she did the needful.”
“Her eyes got opened? What do you mean?”
“When lovers are in relationship, they tend to allow their emotions to override the real situation on ground. They turn blind eyes to the red flags and serious questions that demand deep-rooted answers. When they are now married, things begin to unfold and it may be too late.”
Anne sighed deeply and asked her mother,
“What went wrong in your marriage with my father?”
Lisa drank the remaining orange juice and smiled,
“Your father and I …”
To be continued in Episode 30.