Dear God, I know not what to say, but I’ll say thank You. Thank you for everything. Everything You’ve done for me, I give thanks. You are the decider, I do not know what to do. I am here and here again. Should I keep going, stay where I am or move backwards. Or should I just change my location forever?
I’ve worked and played, I have cried and wiped my tears, I have been angry and calm, I have been sad and happy, I have friends and foes, I have lovers and haters. I have given and taken and I do it all and all. I have no one to face, I have no one to look at or onto and I have no one’s shoulder to lean on. Here I am at Your feet asking for a burp.
What more can I ask, what more do I need, what more can i ever want, what else do I want to become. I can only strive to be a better me. I can only want and want more for myself, but I know that You alone knows my need.
Dear God, my tears spread my pen ink to liquid, it could not form to write the letters. I am not in pains, but I am In need, my heart is heavy, Only You I can pour it to. No man is a helper except the one You sent.
My body is weak but I give my soul to You to keep strong. My mouth Is shut but I could tell it to You my issues. My eyes won’t stop bleeding tears, it’s uncontrolled, You alone I tried to tell it all to.
The betrayal I have received from men has widened my eyes and here I am, In tear of pains and sorrow, seeking Your face in all that concerns me, as I ask You take control of it all. Dear God, I thank You for making me go through this phase and still could crawl back to You. Dear God, even the letter I have not written, You have read it. You know my right time, grant me patience to pull through.
Religion is not war
Religion is not human difference
It teaches love and humanity
Riches and gold I cannot give
But I can teach you life lessons
Lessons you can pass on to you own generations
I can take you to places
Places to see people
I can point to you who I know
I can point to you what I know
But I may not
Be able to make you talk to them
The position of that man, today
Is not forbidden to anyone
You can get there too.
A lot is required,
A lot, I myself cannot explain
The man in the vehicle
Guided by lots of security
Is born of man
Created by the same God we serve
All I can say is
Be calm and kind
Stay true to yourself
Be good to people no matter what
Be obedient even if no one sees you
Have a clean heart
I cannot say it all
But I want this day to remain in you
I want you to remember this day
And many days yet to come,
we will have lots of memories
For you to learn life lessons.
Poem by Nimota Idera Dauda-Ajao
Photo by Tolani Alli
The reality of life
Is the appearance of the unexpected visitor
Whose presence, takes his guest to a cross road
With or without notice
There is nothing sudden about it
For it moves about Picking on it's next catch
Where he could laugh while people wail
Where it could mock while people are puzzled
It's visit is like breakfast
We all will have a taste
Our time only differs
And our meal differs too
No one lives forever
Even the crowned kings
Bow to it's presence
While the powerful, worships, while still taken away
Wailers should wail no more
It will always come within us
We only seek more space and time
Before it's next strike
It's next abode we know not
it takes a strong heart to celebrate a transition
it's only a road to the other road
A road that leads to a home we all will arrive
So death! Be not proud!
This life is not a forever home
It's only a marketplace
We will eventually take home our good.
A home we will live
A home we will forever be
A home where we worry no more
Of your arrival to our abode.
Man Of God the movie tells the story of a young man who ran away from his harsh religious upbringing. He was caught up with the worldly lifestyle he enjoyed, leaving behind his family’s religious lifestyle. He rose to be deep rooted in his worldly life, performing music like late Fela Kuti.
Samuel played by (Akah Nnani), was caught up in the love triangle of three women, Rekya(Dorcas Shola Fapson), his girl whom they both own the band and sing together, Teju (Osas Ighodaro), his family friend who was always there for him, through education and other ways in life while Joy(Atlanta Bridget Johnson), who was Teju’s friend, became the love of his life, who is a spiritual girl he fell in love with unconditionally.
Though Samuel left home like the prodigal son, without giving it a re-think to go back, his mother was always writing him to come back home, while his father never left his thought. His quest to be deep rooted in worldly religion never left him. He always wanted more as he keeps seeking more.
The disappearance of Joy and Rekya in his life, made him pave way for Teju, who also loved him. They grew together while he performed in the church. There is this saying “you can only take a man away from the street, you cannot the the street away from a man”. Teju in her quest to keep Samuel to himself had to put up with all of his excesses, managing his ways and pretending to be spiritual. She has helped covered up a lot for him. She desired worldly life as well, but in a spiritual way, however it comes, she just want it.
Rekya appeared years later. Rekya was a hustler who made money through anything illegal , she talked Samuel Into way of setting up church for worldly reason, all aim is to make money. Samuel succumb to her advice and there was a birth of “The Viyard of Love Church”. Samuel earlier had lots of scandals in his former church, all was not forgotten, as there was death involved.
Rekya remained Samuel’s concubine, while both deal in illegal business using the church as a cover up. Joy showed up married but no longer attached Samuel, although Samuel wanted her backache was not ready to cheat on her husband. Samuel kept up with his life like a two-sided coin, till he met his Waterloo with Rekya.
Samuel portrays the prodigal son in the holy book. He left his beautiful home for the riches of the world, and then after he has squandered it all, he wondered through life suffering, he decided to come back home to his father who welcomed his long lost son.
The church has two imagery in the movie, the good and the bad. Samuel set up his church claiming he has a calling which was not while his dad has a true faith, serving God wisely in his church.
True Religion is of truth and purity, accepting God and believing in Him, not having to follow the worldly lifestyle while being a man of God. Samuel portray religion as an escape to his bad ways by using it to cover up for his bad ways with the help of his girlfriend, Rekya, who uses church as their cover up means to their illegal businesses. Religion is serving and worshiping God, it becomes worldly when people decide to serve the Man of God instead of God Himself. No caution from the Man of God for he himself enjoys or is carried away with the self acclaimed saviour he his called
Good music gives positive message to people, shares an understanding of the society and believe. It binds people together with mutual love and goals, without spreading conflicts. Music is portrayed in two ways in this movie: First: worldly gathering, as seen by the religious mindset, where Samuel portrays himself as “Abami” performing like late Fela Kuti who uses his songs to send message to the society tackling fake religious people and bad politicians. Samuel did this due to his upbringing. Secondly, gospel music, Teju made Samuel take up the job as a church artist, so he can preach the gospel through his music but was not achieved. Music can be performed anywhere so far a good message is being passed.
Love for Human
There is a love triangle in this movie between Samuel and the three women in his life. But Samuel was deeply involve with one of the, Joy. Joy loved Samuel as well but the inability to pit up with his way made her move on in life the moment he was out of her picture. Rekya’s love for Samuel was on a edge of achievement, it was an open heart to what they both stand to gain while she let him have other women into his life. Teju on the other side was ready to love Samuel even though he is a bad influence to her spiritual life, she still had to cover him up to he almost lead her to her loom, then she turned the table around. Samuel’s mother on the other hand, had unconditional motherly love for Samuel, she had Samuel in her heart all her life while he was on exile and later died of a broken heart.
Love For God
Love for God has projected in this movie can be viewed I different ways. Samuel’s father, Prophet Josiah Obalolu, truly served God for the love he has for Him not for worldly achievement but his son Samuel King on the other hand sees serving God as a way of setting up a church for business. Though Samuel was brought up in the ways of the Lord, which seems harsh to him due to his ways when he was young, he could not define his love for God. He was the prodigal son.
The theme of acceptance can be seen in different aspect in this movie. Rekya was the girl in the life of Samuel, but she accepted he could date other women despite their relationship. It was said by Rekya to Samuel “Just give am strong thing for one corner, she go free you” referring to Teju. Teju on the other hand doesn’t not want to accept the fact that Samuel doesn’t to belong to her, which is the reason why she had to unnecessarily put up with his excesses to the point of marriage.
Lies and Deceit
Samuel was not true to himself as he juggles his life religiously in deceit while living a bad portrayed life in secrete. He uses the church as a business entity and also to womanize, embezzling funds and doing illegal businesses. He lied to his wife Teju, he cheated on her with Rekya and other church ladies. This shows that he never loved Teju, he just needed to be with someone. He also wanted to Have Joy, but Joy stayed true to her faith and husband by not cheating on him.
The theme of spirituality can be seen in Joy, who was a true minister of God and not for the fame or money to be made from ministering. Samuel lied that he had a calling which is a wrong and not spirituality. Teju’s spirituality is shaky, one could barely tell, if it’s true as she covers up a lot of misery for her husband, Samuel, until she got fed up due to the fact that she was left out in his new plan to life
The movie “MAN OF GOD” by Bolanle Austen-Peters is a great movie of all time, she portrayed the typical Nigerian religious society using Christianity. Christianity preaches love and kindness not harshness as Samuel as seen it. It take a true calling to be a minister not just waking up to become a pastor. Owning a church should not be a money making entity, not a gathering to run illegal business.A gathering to worship God and not worship the man of God. It is sad to witness what is happening in our society religiously today, men of God allowing people worship them in place of God, it happens in all religion, except the true ones.
My thought, my speculations: So, if Samuel was lucky enough to have married Joy, he might not have turned out to be who he later became. She might make him see through to a true ministering, love builds respect and there might be enough respect for Joy, he might not cheat on her. Joy would never have covered up all his bad acts, Joy would have made him visit his parents, may be his mother would not have died or would have died happily and not heart broken. Joy would have known if he truly had a calling. Joy was a true worshiper of God and not man
Teju made Samuel who he became. She truly loved him but may be he is not the right man for her to marry, or she Is not the right woman for him to marry. She became the demon who painted Samuel white even when he was black, and the moment she realized he was leaving her out of the picture, she resort to destroy his life drastically.
Truly, I called her the demon, i will also call her the angel who made him pay for all his ways of the past and made him find his way back home. He paid it all in full, and I know their part will never cross, even if it does, they are totally different people and the prodigal son already returned to his father’s house, the true man of God.
Rekya is an orphan, a goal getter who can resort to anything whatsoever to fetch her lots of money. she could do anything, just to be rich and be on top of the world, just for the world sake. Salvation is nothing to her.
Joy, true woman of God, with the heart of gold meant for Samuel, but fate never let them be. God has a way of planning things beyond our understanding, ways in which we ourselves could not explain. So is the case of Joy, though Samuel has tempting riches and affluence, Joy never let herself get carried away with it by still professing love for her husband. Joy is the true hero.
Movie Review by Nimota Dauda-Ajao. A movie by Bolanle Austen-Peters
How improved or important are we as humans? What kind of agent are we to the Ummah? How are we seen or perceived by our fellow being? What are we doing to praise Allah within ourselves for others to learn from?
It is important as human or as muslims to make positive impacts in our environment, our work place, the society and especially within the family. It is understandable that not everyone will like us, not everyone will like what we do, but in whatever aspect, let us be good to the Glory of Almighty Allah
We should be human being of positive impact not just human being of just making a living in this worldly life. There are several ways we can make impact:
Ordinarily, if we are seen by someone, and our presence brings joy, laughter and happiness to the place we enter, that alone is grace on it’s own, that alone is a positive impact. Meaning our appearance brings goodness to people and brings smile to their heart. When we are seen, Islam is seen in us, not just by word of mouth or by what we wear, our presence should show that, as it brings a certain freshness to the gathering we find ourselves
Our manner of approach, how do we talk to people, do we say the truth or we tell lies. These are what makes up the page of man in Islam, and it makes a lot of impact. A truthful person will always be respected and want to be associated with, for such person is embedded with integrity.
We should be good to anyone and everyone, even those that are not good to us. We cannot pay evil for evil, rather, good for evil and let us leave everything to God.
We should be dutiful to our parents and families. Our presence should not be feared at home within family members while we are very nice to people outside. Our family deserves our joy, our smile and our happiness.
And establish prayer and give zakat and whatever good you put forward for yourselves, you will find it. with Allah.
So whoever does an atom’s weight of good will see it.
فَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ خَيْرًا يَرَهُ
22-Surah Al-Hajj ( The Pilgrimage ) 77
The good deed and evil deed are not equal, repel the evil with one which is better, i.e (Allah orders the faithful believer to be patient at the time of anger and to excuse those who treat them badly), then verily he, between whom you there was enmity, (will become) as though he was a close friend.
May Almighty Allah make us positively impact people and grant us the Grace to be good to not just ourselves, our family but also the society at large.
Life we say is a journey, or sometimes, we call it a market place, I will say life is a kitchen, where we prepare series of meals, meals no one can prepare for us but ourselves, which we will feed ourselves in the grave.
The meal we prepare while we are alive, what we prepare and how we prepare it, determine how we will enjoy it. We either eat it happily or sadly. Now the question is what are we preparing for grave?, how are we preparing for grave? But Who is ready to go to the grave?
Every soul will taste death. Then to Us will you be returned.
Whatever we do in this life, we do it for ourselves, even the deeds we do, we gain the reward by ourselves. Let us cut out the perception of “Someone should return the favour when we do them good.”. Almighty Allah is the one that rewards good. And if it is the other way round we want to act, we will surely be rewarded.
We come to this life to prepare our meal (deed, solah, zakat, good behaviour), that will lie with us in the grave before resurrection and after resurrection. And Almighty Allah will judge us according to what we have achieved with our hands, what our hands have cooked.
May allah guide and protect us from the punishment of the grave, Ameen
Life tests can come in different aspects, especially in ways we least expected. It can be loss of life or property, job, money or loved ones or a great dissapointment one least expected, bad or dangerous things happening to good people and so on.
When things like this happens, it is best to believe and know that it comes from Allah. He is the supreme and ruler of all, He causes a lot to happen, good or bad but it is best we know that when Allah tests man, He love such person so much that He wants to test the faith of such man.
Allah does this by testing our Iman, how strong our faith Is and how we will scale through it. it is indeed a blessing that we believe He is the one and only, the beginning and the end.
when we are faced with life tests, its better we take several lessons from it:
We should stay strong in Iman and know that whatever befalls man is from Allah. it is better we thank Allah, make Dua, than being sad or question Allah for whatever befalls us.
(29:2) Do people think that they will be let go merely by saying: “We believe,” and that they will not be tested,1
(29:3) for We indeed tested those who went before them?2 Allah will most certainly ascertain3those who spoke the truth and those who lied.
That we are tested is always a blessing in disguise. Only the strong hearted, the one that holds on to the faith of Allah, will be able to know this. We are sometimes kept away from bad acts or sins by loosing things or being so dear to us because Allah wants to replace it with something better.
And We will surely test you with something of fear and hunger and a loss of wealth and lives and fruits, but give good tidings to the patient,
[He] who created death and life to test you [as to] which of you is best in deed – and He is the Exalted in Might, the Forgiving –
It is stated that we should have strong faith and Iman to be Abel to scale through life test. Allah test those he love, He give victory to those, He loves guide, protects and lead aright those He love.
Our nation(Nigeria), is known to be filled with lots of ideas, know and unknown, a democratic nation yet, not practiced. Oppression occurs all aspects, though we have guided laws In Nigeria, some citizens still act and live above the law. We raise our voice to the world, yet, we are not heard, those we speak to are not deaf, they only pretend to be.
According to google dictionary, oppression is “prolonged cruel or unjust treatment or exercise of authority.” also “mental pressure or distress.”. In our economy, we create mental health awareness, we implore people to speak, yet, we leave behind the genesis of the main issue untreated, but choose to take care of the problems it causes.
No child is told what to do, they act out whatever is seen done in front of them, it is said that, we cannot tell what to think of, they only think of the situation around them and act it out as practical.
Google dictionary describes bully as “a person who habitually seeks to harm or intimidate those whom they perceive as vulnerable.”,or seek to harm, intimidate, or coerce (someone perceived as vulnerable). In our various environs, how do we treat people, how do we relate to people in front of our children both old and young, how are our children trained, what do we make them watch, how do we make them communicate, do they have freedom of speech? All of these questions will be answers acted out by the children we raise.
A Molested child, whose parents barely listen to him or her will grow to have fear in them. They will not have the courage to face their peers or raise their voice to be heard. They let whatever done to them, roll by while they suffer in silence. In worst cases, some children grow to retaliate, do the same to younger peers as they grow, for that is what they learn as a child.
As parents, how careful are we with our ward, children and environment? How safe do we keep every child we raise? How often do we check and listen to them? Do we ask them questions when we hear or see them portray different habits?
No child can learn alone, they have to guided, both male and female child are molested, it is not limited to a gender. Let us give children the opportunity to speak their mind. Let us not infuse too much fear in them, as it keeps them away from having free mind to talk. Lots of questions should be asked. Most importantly, we should be careful, what they watch and what we do in front of them.
Bully is another aspect that happens at a child’s early age. Bully starts from scratch, a child should be cautioned when such act is done. Should a child be bullied, it is the job of the parent to notice such in a child as it affects the child in all aspects. Bullying affects a child’s mental health and leads them to keep lots of secrete that can damage them physiologically.
it all boils to making a child to speak up no matter what, making a child have a mind of his own, ability to stand for themselves and right. If none of this is achieved, it could kill a child, such child can be a living dead, such child will be scared of anything and everything, regardless if it’s coming from the oppressor or not.
The bully grew under a parental care of nonchalant or less care, peer pressure is a major aspect to this as most children come together from different family, home or neighourhood. A child portrays what they see, and forced to do what they are told, they loose parental care and control.
The children uncared for, grow to be a menace to the society. They become adult who tend to bully fellow adults and older people. They do not see their acts as bad as it seems, they see it as a norm. When they realize the effect of their bad acts, it’s effect on them, others and the society, they become uncontrolled as they are addicted to the act and cannot get themselves out.
it is best to properly raise a child at the very young age, make them have good peers and most importantly, put up good acts infront of the young child. This will help avoid the “woes to come” in oppression and bully in our society.