…What dominates a man’s thoughts? Thoughts of riches, fame, beauty, good health, success or God’s will? Even the leresis of our prayers hover around calls…calls for help and assistance from God. Likewise, our thoughts. Despite our heinous nature, all that man needs is help… HELP. We hope for the divine hand of God in all our affairs…Perhaps, that hand of God could be an angel in our own lives…
Adebayo: Time is indeed specious. Our final examinations lurk in no distance. Soon,I’d be a graduate of political science!
Jeremy: (Clears his throat) Oh Indeed. (He had been absent minded.)
Adebayo: What bothers you, Jeremy? Your face has been gloomy all day. Are you sure you’re okay?
Jeremy: I am alright. I just have a slight headache. I have been trying to read this textbook but it seems as though my head has been clogged up. I barely understand what I have been reading!
Adebayo: Oh come on! You’re such a gnomic! Today, you complain about how difficult it is to understand your books and tomorrow you come out best in our class! Seriously? How do you do it? I really want to know the secret!
Jeremy: Oh get out of here! I’m dead serious! I need to understand this! I have been trying to comprehend these theories for three days now! But nothing seems to get into this thick skull of mine.
Adebayo: Won’t you pray like you always do? Huh? Won’t you pray to that “your God”?
Jeremy: I have! He has refused to take heed to my prayers. My mother is terribly sick in the hospital and my father has been struggling to pay the bills! I have been praying constantly for an angel of God to help me in my academics which I have taken niche in. I have also pleaded for an angel of God to help my mum and most of all, my poverty stricken family. But all I ever get is…is…silence. A cold, piercing silence. Sometimes, I wonder if God ever hears me. He never answers my prayers! He never gives any sign whatsoever!
Adebayo: Apparently, you now see reasons with me. It’s better to be an atheist than to pray vainly. (He gives an impish grin.) Meanwhile, I have to take my leave. I’m running late. Won’t you see me off? That could help ease out your pains a bit!
Jeremy: Sure! I’d even check up on Benjamin on our way to the junction. I haven’t seen him in a while.
Adebayo: That weirdo! I wonder what connection you both have! He’s a chronic geek you wouldn’t want to associate with. He’s four years younger than you are. Of what usefulness is he? A young chap who lives nearby?
Jeremy: He’s a friend and a brother indeed. And there’s nothing you would say that would make me despise him. Now let’s lay to rest this melodrama about my friendship with Benjamin, shall we? (Adebayo frowns as they exit.)
20 minutes later.
(Jeremy walks into a bookshop adjacent to his rented apartment. He had grown fond of the shop because of his relationship with Benjamin. He barely knew Benjamim yet he seemed like a brother he never had. Jeremy darts his eyes around the corners of the shop. It appeared empty until a figure approached him from the right.)
Girl: Hello? How may I help you?
Jeremy: Urmmm…Good afternoon. I’m here to see Benjamin,the sales boy. I haven’t seen him for a while now. So I came to check up on him.
Girl: (she stares at him in perplexity.) Benjamin? Are you sure that you’re not…(Before she completes her statement, Benjamin appears like a whirling wind rolled up in seconds. It was well apparent that he had been standing at the entrance, waiting to get a grasp of Jeremy’s darting eyes.)
Jeremy: Benjamin! You’re such a snake! Come over! (He drags him out of the shop. The girl stares at Jeremy for a while and murmurs some things to herself. She nods her head in pity and returns to her duty. While, Jeremy chats with his friend, Gregory; who had the looks of a nineteen year old boy.)
Benjamin: Good afternoon, Jeremy.
Jeremy: How are you, young lad? I haven’t seen you in a while. You’ve stopped visiting me! I hope you are alright? That girl seemed rude though. Have you stopped helping them to sell books or…?
Benjamin: All is well. I have been where I am. You just haven’t been where you’re supposed to be. So I couldn’t find you.
Jeremy: Oh shut up! You always talk like a man twice my age! Quit it! You’re too young for that! Are you busy? I wanted us to just take a walk and perhaps talk a little. I have no idea why. But I feel very comfortable with you.(They walk together.)
Benjamin: So you shall be. I am never busy. I am always available…for you…and you alone, uncle Jeremy! (He laughs) I came to your apartment yesterday.
Jeremy: Really? And you couldn’t call me? I thought I gave you my number? Why don’t you always call before you come to visit? Don’t you know I am a student? I’m either at school or my house!
Benjamin: I couldn’t call you either. You were not in school. You were at home.
Benjamin: I heard a female voice. So I didn’t want to interrupt the splendorous time you were having with her.
Jeremy: Hahahahahaha. Sorry, man. She’s a very good friend of mine. I was tutoring her on a course which is currently giving her a hard time.
Benjamin: (He stares scornfully and laughs.) Oh is it? You can’t lie to yourself. Neither can you lie to me, you know.
Jeremy: Oh well! (He signs heavily.) I had to clear up my head. I wasn’t thinking anymore. A little distraction wouldn’t harm, will it? Everything in my life is obviously crashing down. Remember my sick mother? Well, she isn’t getting better! My final examination kick starts on Friday which is three days away and I find it difficult to understand what I read. I’m having a 4.7 ccgpa but with the difficulty I experience in reading these days, I’m not quite sure I would graduate with something that high anymore! My academics are slowly dwindling. My family has been plagued with sickness and poverty! I even engage in menial jobs these days to support myself and my family! I am confused. I don’t know what to do anymore. I need you to give me those soothing words. Oh, I wish I was blessed with the wisdom you have. I only read to pass my examinations. Your wisdom surpasses mine despite the fact that you’re yet to be admitted into a university.
Benjamin: Hmmm…Sweet words of encomium. But I refuse to take all that glory. Oh the depth of riches in both the wisdom and knowledge of God…His judgments are unsearchable and His ways past finding out. Seek the wisdom of God. When last did you pray?
Jeremy: I can’t even recall…It’s been a while. It seems God has abandoned me.
Benjamin:I don’t think He has. He still has hope in you. Despite all your sins and how much you repent and yet backslide to your sinful ways, He always comes looking for you. He believes in your redemption. He came for you yesterday but the darkness of your house veiled you.
Jeremy: After all that praises, you still go ahead to make no sense! Oh well, you’re just a boy like me. You really don’t know much about these things. I shouldn’t have bothered you in the first place. I just didn’t have anyone else to talk to.
Benjamin: You could always talk to me. I…I love you…
Jeremy: (coughs) Sometimes, I wonder whether you’re gay or something of that sort. Boys don’t tell boys they love each other.
Benjamin: I only wanted to express how much more your father loves you.
Jeremy: I know he does. He just doesn’t hear my prayers!
Benjamin: He does. Soon, you’d find out.
Jeremy: I hope I will. Anyways, how about your plan to go to the University?
Benjamin: I don’t have such plan. The university isn’t meant for everyone.
Jeremy: The bookshop is your niche, huh? Hmmm…(his headache worsens…) Oh I need help. All i need is help! Urghhh! My head aches terribly!
Benjamin:(He stretches his hands to Jeremy) All you need is peace. And peace you shall get. May God forgive you…(He sighs.) My father sent me on an errand. I have to go now. I will see you soon.
Jeremy: Alright…See you soon! ( Jeremy walks forlornly to his apartment. His headache suddenly disappears. Minutes later, he picks up the textbook which had proven difficult to comprehend and tries to read it once more. To his astonishment, he understood every page he read. And he was able to retain virtually everything he read. Few hours later, he receives a text message…
SENDER: MY DAD
MESSAGE: HELLO, SON! YOUR SISTERS AND I CANNOT FATHOM THE HAPPINESS THAT HAS BEGOTTEN OUR HEARTS TODAY. THE DOCTOR CALLED AT 1PM TO EXPRESS HIS SHOCK AT YOUR MOTHER’S MIRACULOUS RECOVERY. WE JUST ARRIVED AT THE HOSPITAL . AND YOUR MOTHER IS SOUND AND HEALTHY! PLEASE CALL US. THIS IS A MIRACLE!
TO BE CONTINUED…)