Melvin sat with the other pastors and waited, the pastoral team was present but no one had said anything, instead they all sat as though waiting for someone.
“GO…can you please address us?” Pastor Magmus, the oldest pastor in the church said to Melvin.
Melvin wasn’t listening, in fact, he had no idea that the man had actually addressed him.
“GO…” Another pastor spoke up and tapped his arm.
“Oh…do you mean me? I’m sorry…I…err…I…” Melvin stammered and stood up.
The pastors shared looks amongst themselves, it was as though they knew that something was wrong.
“I am sorry, I was half-expecting my dad to show up and lead the meeting.” Melvin laughed nervously.
No one joined in the laughter or pretended to have enjoyed the joke, they all had grim looks on their faces.
“So err….let’s start with the opening prayer. Pastor Magmus, please can you start the prayers?” Melvin asked.
Pastor Magmus stood up as though expecting that the prayer aspect of the meeting was his birth-right and indeed it was. There were seldom times that Pastor Magmus didn’t start and end the prayers for the meetings especially because he was accorded the respect as the eldest in the group.
Pastor Magmus shut his eyes tight and said.
“Let us be in the mood of prayer…” He cleared his voice and sang. “Elshaddai…Elshaddai…”
The other pastors joined him and soon, the prayer was over. As soon as the pastors took their seats, the door opened and Melvin’s father stood at the doorway. All the pastors stood in respect as they greeted him. He nodded and walked into the meeting room. Melvin stepped down from the slightly raised podium.
“I am just here to observe.” Melvin’s father said to him.
Melvin nodded and climbed the podium again, his palms were slick with sweat and his heart beat very fast, he wished he knew how to calm himself down but he couldn’t.
“Can…can…the secretary please read the minutes of the last meeting?” Melvin said.
The secretary stood up and began to read the minutes on his tablet while everyone listened.
“Wait…mom…wait…are you sure we’re making the right decision?” Bianca asked her mother as they drove towards the Prophetess’s place.
“The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence and the violent take it by force.” Her mother said to her.
“Mom, I’m really scared.” Bianca said staring out into the night.
“Why should you be scared? Do you know that we are not the first people to seek solutions to our problems?”
“But mom…I have served God all my life and I’ve never turned to any other god.”
“Who says we’re turning to another god? We serve the Lord and we believe in Him, isn’t that enough?”
“The bible says that God is a jealous God. In fact, the first commandment says ‘You shall have no other gods before me’.”
“That’s the Old Testament and back then, no one knew Jesus Christ…” Her mother said.
“What are you saying, mom?”
“I’m saying that God wasn’t willing to share with anyone till Jesus came and the Holy Spirit and…oh gosh Bianca, what is the matter with you? If it bothers you so much that this woman might not be serving God, then ask God for forgiveness after you marry Melvin besides, you’re not going to bow to her or worship her, are you? The only thing you’re going to do is seek a solution for your problem.”
Bianca looked at her mother and nodded slowly.
Soon, they were at the entrance to a very strange looking church with a crop of an even stranger looking worshipers. The night was dark and quite unfriendly and the worshippers moved about in circles, speaking in different tongues and praying. There was a small bonfire at the centre of the prayer group and everyone concentrated fully on their prayers. Bianca’s mother parked her car and they both alighted.
Bianca followed her mother as they made their way into the strange looking church. The church’s lights were out as the only source of light was from the many candles coloured in blue and red.
“You came as you said you would.” A voice said to them.
Bianca shrieked in fright and hid behind her mother.
“Yes…I did, and I brought my daughter with me. Please help us. I don’t mind how much it costs but I need you to help us.”
“Good…come forward.” The voice said.
As they walked closer to the sound of the voice, Bianca whispered to her mother.
“Let’s get out of here mom….I’m so scared.”
“Get a grip on yourself, Bianca! Don’t you want our plans to work?”
Bianca kept mum and followed her mother to the front of the church where the prophetess stood on the slightly raised podium and stared at them. Bianca noticed that the woman had the kindest eyes.
“Is this your daughter?” She asked.
“Yes, this is Bianca.”
“You are a beautiful woman Bianca.” The prophetess said kindly.
“Your mother has told me all that there’s to know but I’d like to hear from you. Why do you want Melvin?”
Bianca opened her mouth and shut it close, she didn’t seem to have a reason.
“Speak Bianca!” Her mother said to her.
“Don’t force her to speak, I want to hear her intention and reason for coming, from her lips.” The prophetess said.
“Right from the day I stepped into the church, I have always loved him…” Bianca said.
The prophetess didn’t respond, urging her to continue.
“Melvin is a born leader, he’s charismatic, he’s handsome, tall, wealthy and with him by my side, I will live the life I’ve always wanted.”
“Is this your reason or your mother’s reason?” The prophetess asked.
Bianca’s mother stiffened and looked at the prophetess in disbelief.
“It’s my reason.” Bianca said with a shaky voice.
The prophetess stepped down from the podium and walked towards them, she stood before Bianca and stared into her eyes.
“Did you ever love anyone else besides Melvin but due to the fact that your life has been figured out, you had to forget the person?”
Bianca didn’t speak.
“I asked a question….” The prophetess said.
“That’s ridiculous! My daughter has loved no one but Melvin.” Bianca’s mother said.
“No…I have never loved anyone else aside from Melvin and I wish to love him till my dying day.” Bianca said very rapidly.
The prophetess looked at her and said.
“I asked you this question because it is necessary that you want what you want and that no one is pushing you into wanting it.”
“Are you trying to say that I’m pushing my daughter towards Melvin? Bianca has loved Melvin since she was fifteen, there’s no way I put the ideas into her head.” Bianca’s mother said.
The prophetess nodded and said nothing.
“When do we begin? You said I could bring her here today and I just found that Melvin has another woman in his house. I need her out so that my daughter can take her rightful place by his side.”
“How prayerful is Melvin?” The prophetess asked them.
“I…he is quite prayerful.” Bianca said.
“How many times does he pray on a daily basis?” The prophetess asked.
“I can’t say…I mean…he prays but I don’t know how many times he prays in a day.” Bianca said.
“I can’t help you if you don’t know how active his prayer life is. One thing with our kind of service is that it can’t work effectively if the person is prayerful.” The prophetess said. When no one spoke, she continued. “Prayer destroys a lot of things, it destroys what we do.”
“I saw your members praying outside.” Bianca said.
“We work with the cosmic laws…we do not pray.”
Bianca nodded quickly.
“Does that mean that you don’t do voodoo or magic or…” Bianca asked.
The prophetess laughed loud.
“Are you afraid that your God will punish you?” The prophetess asked.
“Our God is merciful, slow to anger and abounding in love.” Bianca’s mother said. “He’ll understand the desperate measures we have taken.”
The prophetess nodded and turning away from them, she walked towards the podium but when she reached there, she spun around so fast, Bianca and her mother stared at her in disbelief.
“Prayer will only spoil my work, so, I need the two of you to stay away from anything that has to do with prayer for at least three days. You should stay away from the church, stay away from family prayers or personal prayers, in fact, stay away from anything that needs you to call upon the name of God. Bianca, I need you to go to Melvin’s house and turn his mind away from the things of God, at least for a short while as I begin working on him.”
“But…we didn’t part on a good note, the last time I was there…I’m sure he’s upset with me.”
The prophetess looked at Bianca and took a few steps towards her, then she lifted up her chin with her fingers.
“I don’t mean that you should go there as you are.” She said with a smile.
Bianca didn’t understand.
“You will go to his house but no one will see you go in or out.”
“How is that possible ma?” Bianca asked.
“You will find your way into his dreams. Before you can be his wife in the physical, you need to be his wife in the spirit.” The prophetess said.
Bianca looked at the woman, suddenly it was as though a light flashed and she saw something she couldn’t describe in the woman’s eyes.
It made her quiver in fright.
To be continued…..