*ENEMIES OF THE CHURCH
It was a very beautiful ceremony, as the whole church was filled to the brim, everyone was busy congratulating Brother Alfred and his wife, while some were busy gossipping about them and enjoying the coldness of the malt.
”Am sure they are now owing big money, because they must have spent a fortune on this Baby Dedication.” Helen said.
*Stella:* (laughing) What is my own? My own is to come here whenever they invite me, eat and go. It’s none of my business if they borrow the world to make that happen. That’s their business.
*Helen:* But wait o, Stella is this not their number 7 child? Why are they still giving birth?
Helen still chewing the meatpie turned to Vic and they both burst out laughing.
*Vic:* Let me correct you my dear, it’s their number 8. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven and eight. (She said indicating with her fingers).
*Helen:* But why na? Is 8 not too much or is there a particular sex they are looking for?
*Stella:* Are you his wife to decide if 8 is too much? What is your business in it?
”Is there any particular sex she is looking for that is making her give birth every year like this?” Helen asked.
*Vic:* I don’t think so because she has three boys and five girls now.
*Stella:* Maybe they want to make it a round figure. Five girls and five boys.
The girls all burst out laughing. Then they saw Reverend Leo, Pastor Jim and their wives walking towards Brother Alfred and his wife with a smile on their faces.
*Vic:* Look at our Reverend and his wife, they’ve been married for thirteen years and they don’t even have one child. Pastor Jim who is married for just two years have twins, and this our baby factory couple, Brother Alfred has been married for 10 years with 8 children, and I am very sure that they will do another baby dedication by next year. When I see all of this I begin to wonder if God loves some people more than some.
*Stella:* I really pity Reverend o, and he is a very nice man.
*Helen:* And he prays for people and they receive their healing o, he even prays for people looking for children and yet he can’t pray for his wife to conceive, it’s really a big mystery o.
*Vic:* I pray God shows them mercy one day sha.
”Amen!!!” the girls chorused.
Mr. and Mrs. Alfred shook hands with the Pastor and Reverend. Their wives took turns to hug Mrs. Alfred as they congratulated her.
*Mrs. Jim:* Once again congratulations Mrs. Alfred.
*Mrs. Alfred:* Thank you so much Mummy! God has chosen to bless me.
Rachael, Reverend Leo’s wife kept silent, she didn’t say anything she just hugged Mrs. Alfred.
*Mrs. Alfred:* Big Mummy don’t worry, I believe soonest God will bless you with four babies at once.
*Mrs. Jim:* Amen and amen.
Rachael said nothing she just smiled and walked back to her husband and held his hand.
The party took about four hours and everyone had a lot to chew and drink and finally it ended and everyone went their way.
It was a silent drive home. Reverend Leo knew his wife was going to eat him up with her words today.
Right before the church and other people she was the perfect woman, but at home she was his perfect mistake. They got home and entered into their house. The Reverend headed straight into their room, but as he was about stepping into the room, Rachael held him back.
*Rachael:* Reverend the Reverend, Man of God! My wonderful husband, we are home again, we are here again to continue another year of fruitlessness.
Reverend Leo, looked at her and ignores but Rachael wouldn’t let him move.
*Rachael:* I am not done yet Mr. Man of God! Ain’t you tired of doing dedications in the church? Every Sunday you dedicate children, even people you prayed for to get the fruit of the womb, God hears them and bless them but for one reason or the other He has refused to answer you. Don’t you think He is angry with you? See the Alfred’s, you wedded them in this church three years after we got married. You have dedicated seven of their children and today you dedicated the eighth one, ain’t you ashamed?. I watched as you danced, smiled and carried their kids. Let me remind you that dedicating them does not make you their father so you better reformat that your brain if you feel because some parents call you their children’s godfather you have become their father because you are not. You are not!
*Reverend Leo:* Oh honey! Not today na, please don’t do this. God will bless us in His time, the doctor has assured us that nothing is wrong with our health wise and we should just avoid stress and in due time we will have our own kids. Why are you now stressing yourself?
*Rachael:* Leo thirteen years, for thirteen years I’ve been resting yet nothing. All my mates have children already and all I ask for is just one, give me just one child and you refused, you refused, why? Why this man, why?
*Reverend Leo:* I refused? How can you talk like that? Do you think I don’t want to be a father? Honey please relax, God will bless us in His time please.
*Rachael:* When? When is that time? Leo, I am asking you, when is that your God’s time?
As she kept nagging, Reverend Leo ignores her and walks straight into his room. He was tired and didn’t need anyone to stress him.
Rachael sat in the sitting room, crying and cursing and wishing…
Leo couldn’t sleep that night, the constant complain and nagging and crying from his wife, Rachael was so discomforting to him. At a point he shouted from his sleep.
“Oh oh God! Why are you doing this? Why won’t you let me sleep in peace?”
“Sleep in peace, sleep in peace and rest in peace. How can you sleep in peace? You’ve been sleeping in peace for years now and you still want to continue sleeping. Sleep, sleep Leo, sleep”. She increased her crying.
Reverend Leo who was already confused put his hands on his head as he sat down watching his wife.
“Since you don’t want me to sleep, what then do you want me to do? I have told you that God will bless us with a child in His time, what else do you want me to do? He asked.
“When is His time going to come? When? Tell me!” She cried out.
“Okay honey, stop crying. Stop crying,” he holds her close and tries to cheer her up.
“Doctor Wale and nine other doctors that you’ve asked us to see have assured us that we are fine and nothing is wrong with us and we will have our own kids. Why not relax and let’s wait and you will be surprised how God will bless us.”
*Rachael:* I’ve been waiting, I can’t wait anymore, I can’t wait any longer.
“All this stress is not even good for you, it can prevent you from even getting pregnant. Why not relax and rest and soon…
Before he could finish his statement, Rachael interrupted him.
“Relax what? Rest what? Relax till when? How old am I? Which stress? I am asking you which stress?”
*Leo:* Oh okay, am sorry, am sorry. Okay, since it has gotten to this stage, let’s go to an orphanage, let’s adopt a little baby, few months or even weeks old, the child will be ours while we wait on the Lord to bless us.
*Rachael:* Don’t Tell me that, don’t mention adoption to my ears. I am fertile, I know I am and I can carry my own child. I do not need to adopt any child. I want the experience too, I want to know the feelings of being pregnant. So, just kill that adoption thought completely. It’s not for me.
“So what do you want me to say, what do you want me to do? I am not the manufacturer of children. What do you want? I said this, you said no, I said that you said no. What then do you want me to say or do? I am tired and I need to sleep abeg.”
Reverend Leo drew the blankets over his head and laid down to sleep, turning his back on her. Rachael looked at her husband for sometime and then finally spoke up.
“I want you to speak with Mr. Alfred.”
Leo was not looking at her but he wasn’t sleeping either, he just laid motionless staring at the wall. He heard what his wife said but he didn’t say anything because he didn’t understand her point.
*Rachael:* Are you sleeping?
Leo said nothing.
*Rachael:* Did you hear what I said?
Leo remained silent.
*Rachael:* I know you are awake so answer me, (This time she hit him strongly on his back).
*Leo:* Oh my God, what is it? What do you want from me? Why can’t you just let me sleep.
*Rachael:* I said I need you to speak with Mr. Alfred.
*Leo:* I heard you the first time, what am I speaking with Alfred for?
*Rachael:* I need you to beg him for me.
*Leo:* Beg him for what? (He asked not understanding what she was trying to say).
*Rachael:* I need you to beg him to sleep with me and get me pregnant.
Leo was surprised and shocked.
“What!”? He shouted!
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