She felt a twinge of jealousy pierce through her as her best friend marched with an aura of accomplishment to the podium.
Margaret was raised by wealthy Christian parents. She surrendered her life to Christ just before she was offered admissions into the tertiary institution. Severally, she had been warned of the Holy Spirit to deal with the besetting sin of jealousy in her life. But, she had never taken out time to do that.
The thunder of applause that roared from the audience was one Margaret could not deal with.
It tightened the rope of jealousy that had already been tied to her heart.
Janet had been called up to the podium, several times, to receive awards for her outstanding academic performance. That was not all. Now, she was being called to go have an exclusive handshake with the Vice chancellor for coming out as the best graduating student of the year.
“Were it not for my kind heart towards her, who is she to have deserved this roar of accolades.
Her dad, a petit road side mechanic. Her mum, a retail trader. What could they afford for her? Margaret said with a look of pride and disgust.”
“It’s your fault! I suggested to you during your 200 level days that you poison her meal and eliminate her from this world, but you didn’t listen!”
“Ahh! How do you expect me to do that? The Bible says ‘thou shalt not kill.”
“And so?! Didn’t David arrange for the murder of Uriah? when he repented, wasn’t he forgiven? It doesn’t matter! The blood of Jesus is always available to cleanse your sins.” Satan retorted in a subtle tone.
Yes! I have an idea! She won’t go scot-free. Abi, does she think I also don’t like attention? I know what to do!
She churned this idea repeatedly in her heart. ” A sign of conquest.” She thought.
As Janet wove her way through the crowd and as the chorus of applause rose increasingly like the blare of an approaching siren, the bad feeling Margaret had in the pit of her stomach skyrocketed.
“I’m so proud of you, baby girl! Against all odds, you pulled through. You made it.”
Margaret said looking lovingly into the eyes of Janet, after she had given her a passionate hug.
What are friends for?
While they took their seat in other to participate in the rest of the program, Janet expressed how grateful she was to her friend for being used by God. She was indeed very grateful. How else could she repay all the kindness?
In a matter of thirty minutes, graduants were already trooping out of the hall; those that had people to celebrate with, commenced. Those that had none left as soon as the convocation ceremony was brought to a close.
“Wale, put a call through to Purephotos director, In the next twenty minutes we’d be ready for our snapshots. Also, to Star cuisine, our meal should be on its way now. Thank you!”
Margaret ordered with all enthusiasm and Joy. This was her day!
Wale is the immediate younger brother of Margaret. He had just gained admissions into the same tertiary institution his elder sister was graduating from. He had already invited many of his friends to come celebrate with them so he was excited running errands for his sister.
Today is Janet’s great day. She wished that at least one of her parents were around to celebrate with her. But, it wasn’t so. As she sat in a blue plastic chair at the corner of the canopy, she made plans of how her move would be. She’d love to leave for home immediately.
“No, no! no. I won’t listen to that. Don’t tell me you’re taking your leave now? My parents made preparation for two celebrants, I and you. Cheer up, girl. I’m here for you. We are already a family.”
The joy they exuded during the party was unexplainable. Enjoying delicacies. Taking great pictures. ‘Gisting’ about their time in school. It was a great experience.
Literally, time flew. Parting hugs, emotional good byes and smiles was the climax of the party.
Janet was dropped by at the park where she’d board a bus to her place.
Unfortunately, In a matter of an hour the unexpected happened.
“Ahh! God! Drivers of today, they won’t service their cars properly before putting it on the road.”
“Oluwa shánu fun mí o!”
Passers by stood transfixed, waiting for the worst to happen and pleading for mercy from their different gods as the New traveller bus lost control, clearing whatever was on it way.
Bike men, diverting out of the road to save their lives.
Before they knew what was happening, the bus had summersalted three times already. The incident was an eyesore.
You could hear the shoutings and incoherent wailings of the passengers.
It was a helpless situation.
“A brand new traveller bus from Biz road transport was involved in a ghastly accident, destroying many lives.
The only survivor was the Just celebrated best graduating student of the most prestigious university. We hope she pulls through this experience as she was seriously injured.
Journalists reports that her spinal cord was seriously affected, aside other injuries incured. We hope she recovers soon.”
Her mum yelled from the parlor.
Margaret had bolted out of sleep as the breaking news spilled it contents all over her room. sitting transfixed, she could not utter a word in response to her mum’s call.
“This must be a dream! We just saw some six hours ago. I thought Janet would have arrived home by now.”
She said with an eerie mixture of joy and sadness.
Joy, as a consolation for the jealousy she nursed against Janet.
Sadness, as a normal human feeling.
“But God, why I’m I so wicked? I should not feel happy about this.”
“Why shouldn’t you feel happy? At least, you were not the cause of the accident. It happened. Who knows if she even deserves to die.”
“She doesn’t deserves to die! she’s innocent.”
“Let’s see what happens.” Satan concluded with a condescending smile.
You think you can go scot free too . He thought within himself. I’ll make you go crazy with my arrows of guilt. See her! and she calls herself a Christian.
Two days later, Margaret made out time to go Visit Janet. She was really excited to see that Janet was recovering even if She was still in the intensive care unit. It was good. At least, Her health was making progress.
Margaret was excited to see her in a better condition. Her fears have been completely erased. She can now go home with peace of mind.
“For God sake she has been discharged already!
This can’t be.
How could this have happened to her? at home?! of all places.
Margaret shouted with utter agony. Her heart almost flying out.
It was told that Janet had slumped and died on her way to her room, after dinner, that fateful day. It was already five months after her being discharged from the hospital.
Why could this have happened?
It was 3:00am, Margaret rolled from side to side as she lay on bed. She found it hard to fall asleep.
“Janet is gone? How could death have stolen this promising young lady like that? Just when she was being celebrated as the best graduating student. So many mouth-watering scholarships waiting for her. The worst of it, she never knew Christ!
Gritting her teeth as it shattered upon contact, she fell into a trance.
“whosoever hates his brother is a murderer…” You can remember where it was written in the Bible, right?
You are a murderer! you were meant to bring Janet to the light. no! you joined hands with Satan to cut short her life. You are a murderer!”
The voice that spoke to her was soft yet piercing It was like a nail was being driven into her heart.
She forcefully jumped out of sleep, wiping her face with her palms. She wanted to be sure it was a dream.
In the past, Margaret usually had visions upon visions. Her relationship with the Holy Spirit was very cordial. But the bessetting sin of jealousy that was nutured had washed all her Christian experiences down the drain. She was surprised at this trance. This incident must be special.
Me? A murderer? Margaret puzzled.
Not too long, an answer popped into her mind.
“As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” Proverbs 23:7a;
“You nursed jealousy against her.
It developed to hate. But, you diplomatically left it.
You thought hate,
meaning you thought murder.
You are a murderer.”
Now, this time, it was this same Satan who had held her bound in jealousy that analyzed her fault before her.
Satan is the Father of wickedness!
The guilt she was beginning to feel was one she had never felt in her life; even when she was a sinner. It was like a heavy stone was placed on her.
The well of tears in her eyes began to dispel itself profusely. With a clenched fist and head held in between her thighs, she sobbed bitterly.
“Me? A murderer?!”
“Please, God have mercy on me!”
Her tears were uncontrollable.
Jealousy if not dealt with breeds hate.
And according to 1 John 3:15a,
“Whosoever hates his brother is a murderer…”
The Sin that easily puts you down, if you fail to take it to the cross today can lead to such experience as Margaret’s and even worse.
Christ’s blood is always available to make clean.
“Wherefore seeing we also are compassed with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.”