LIFE WHAT A JOURNEY! with CHARLES CHISALA
NOT long ago I told you about my ageing cousinâ€™s spirited hunt for a husband in the miracle-loving and worldly happiness-focused churches.
I explained in fair detail how I â€˜caughtâ€™ her in her house seriously rehearsing how to pray â€˜convincinglyâ€™ in rowdy worship and miracle services, the trademarks of this branch of Christianity.
To date the husband is still elusive.
She is still struggling to trim her long list of lovers who have been bankrolling her extravagant lifestyle as her bishop, who has become her spiritual mentor, advised her.
But it is not easy.
And my cousin has taken her search for an unsuspecting, unexposed and love-starved member of her faith into a marriage to admirable levels.
She is motivated by the realisation that a number of the sisters in Christ she has found in the church, with an equally dark, if not even darker, past are happily married to former â€˜brothers in Christâ€™.
Now she is always talking about â€˜favourâ€™ and will punctuate her speech with countless â€œAmenâ€ every time someone is talking to her.
Ask me about piety. The lady would outshine an angel in an open contest.
A week ago I went to visit her, just to see how she is doing and catch up on the latest in her marathon â€˜missionâ€™ to find a husband. I was quite impressed.
Her voice had become hoarse, and I wanted to find out what had happened to it. â€œHave you had a cough?â€ I asked her.
â€œA cough, why?â€ she responded, looking surprised.
â€œYes, why is your voice hoarse?â€ I asked.
â€œOh, no. I havenâ€™t had a cough or anything like that. Itâ€™s just that I have joined the praise team and am singing a lot. The prayers have also contributed,â€ she said.
â€œI didnâ€™t know that you had that talent, I mean singing. How did you discover it? No, how did they discover you at church?â€ I said.
â€œSince you seem to have a lot of issues to find out letâ€™s get inside the house,â€ she invited. We both went inside.
But as I was about to sit down in a lounge chair she vigorously gestured at me to wait.
â€œNo, no, no! Wait,â€ she said and disappeared into her bedroom. Shortly she emerged with a small bottle in her right hand. She came to my chair and started sprinkling it with the contents.
â€œIn the name of Jesus, in the name of Jesus!â€ she kept muttering as she liberally sprinkled the chair. When she was done she piously gestured to me to sit.
I sat down. Indeed I had a lot to find out. â€œWhat was that for, and what is it that you were sprinkling the chair with? I canâ€™t remember when you became a witchdoctor?â€
Smiling at me benignly she said, â€œI have a duty to protect my visitors from evil.â€
â€œProtect them from what, or from who?â€ I asked, genuinely alarmed.
â€œWhy are you looking like that and asking all these childish questions?â€ she rebuked me. â€œYou mean you donâ€™t know what anointing water is for? I was binding the powers of darkness. I was protecting you.â€
â€œBut arenâ€™t you becoming a bit fanatical about this whole thing, putting too much faith in that water instead of Jesus?â€ I asked.
â€œYou see the paranoia your new faith is driving you into? Very soon you will be seeing demons and satanists everywhere. You are slowly becoming a prisoner of fear, which is unChristian.â€
My cousin revealed that she actually had a carton boxful of the anointing water and a five-litre container full of anointing oil in her house because she has to anoint the bedroom, her body and the bed every evening before going to bed.
She also confided in me that she has been â€˜anointingâ€™ the interior of her car before getting into it in the morning to chase away hostile spirits.
The lady offered me some of the water and oil, but I declined, saying I didnâ€™t need them. I told her that for me prayer was enough for God to hear me and grant my wish.
â€œAre you sure you are not taking this thing a bit too far? You will soon start sprinkling your clothes, shoes and phones. I will not be surprised if one day I catch you sprinkling the pots, plates, spoons and forks with anointing oil and water before using them.
â€œYou are putting your faith in the created instead of the Creator, Jehovah God. Do all the members of your church do these things?â€ I asked.
Instead of answering the question she switched back to the earlier topic.
â€œOh we were talking about my voice. As I told you I am now a member of the praise team, and I am enjoying every moment of it. I was becoming a bit impatient you know,â€ she confided.
â€œWhen I was just an ordinary member no brother was showing serious interest in me despite my efforts to attract their attention. So some sisters advised me to join the praise team where I could easily be seen by everyone.â€
She narrated that one Sunday the leaders of the praise team invited all those interested in joining, and she seized the opportunity.
â€œNow all I need to do is try and out-sing, out-dress and out-dance all the other female members of the praise team to get the attention I deserve from the brothers in the congregation,â€ she said and smiled.
My cousin disclosed that some sisters and brothers in Christ, including the bishop, had confided in her that brothers in the praise team preferred their own kind rather than â€˜outsourceâ€™ brides from the rest of the congregation.
â€œIn fact we have three couples who met in the praise team and they are now married. I am also trying my luck mayo wesu (my mother). Maybe the Lord will answer my prayers,â€ she said.
â€œNo, cousin,â€ I said, â€œseek his forgiveness and repent your sins from the bottom of your heart. Then he will forgive you and give you peace. Seek salvation first, then God will look at your earthly needs,â€ I advised her.
But before I could continue her friend came. They were scheduled to attend a deliverance service at some local church, to be conducted by a â€œpowerfulâ€ prophet.
â€œWe will continue next time,â€ she told me as we parted company. I will tell you more. The hunt for a husband is getting more interesting.
LIFE WHAT A JOURNEY! with CHARLES CHISALA