He got to the market around noon
He had prayed before he left home
His wife and children were dying of hunger
“GOD! Please favour me” he prayed
He walked into the market
It was a very big market
Where would he go?
To whom shall he speak?
Who would help him out?
He went to his customer's shop.
The woman he patronized consistently for several years while the going was good!
The shop had bags of foodstuff of all varieties
He: Madam, I will like to buy rice, beans, cassava flour, yam flower, wheat and palm oil
Madam: What quantity of each food item would you like to buy?
He: Actually, I was a banker up until a month ago, unfortunately I lost my job! My family survived on my savings for the last one month but I had to pay house rent and now I have nothing left in my savings. I have been walking everywhere dropping my resume, my children are dying of hunger please ma, I promise I will come and pay up soon. I swear by God I will repay. Just help me with any quantity of the foodstuffs you can part with. I will be very grateful!”
The madam looked at him as if his body was covered with lice
Madam: You will never prosper, unfortunate man! You came to my shop early in the morning on a Monday to drop this ‘pay later’ line! You plan to ruin the whole week for my business? You plan to ensure only your likes shall flock to my shop throughout the week, you want to spread your misfortune right? God will never allow your family to survive, you will die a gruesome death, you will be crushed to death by a trailer!”
He: Ha! Madam, why were you cursing me? It was help I came here to seek!
Madam: Do you think you are the first person to come to me with a sob story? If I oblige every street urchin in shirt and tie I will have nothing else to show for my years of labour. Shameless liar!
He: I am not lying. All I ask for is some foodstuff to keep my family afloat while I job hunt! I promise you, I will repay you as soon as possible.
Madam: Please leave my shop now before I shout “Thief”! This is Bodija market, thieves are set ablaze within seconds of raising an alarm. Should I go ahead and shout!
He: No ma! I am very sorry you don’t recognize me but you can ask your salesgirls I used to buy bags of foodstuffs here before the going got tough!
Madam: I know, I remember you but I have a good business sense. Selling goods on credit impoverishes the entrepreneur. I don’t want to end up like you, kindly take your leave now!
He had a wife and five children at home
He was the one who stupidly stopped his wife from working after he got a job in the banking sector.
He used to be a teacher, earning peanuts!
His wife used to be a secretary!
They were both managing until his second daughter got very sick
The minders in the crèche where they placed the child mistakenly fed their child with another baby’s feeding bottle
The child, at six months old, got an infection
It was by sheer divine providence that the child survived!
He told his wife once the terrible episode was over to resign
He didn’t want to risk the life of one of his children for the peanuts his wife was earning
His wife agreed
Miraculously he got a banking job a few weeks later
His salary was almost fifteen times that of a teacher
He had always been a homely and responsible man
He made sure his family was well taken care of
Every month, he bought bags of foodstuff and shared a whole cow with four other friends
His family never ever experienced hunger
They had three more children
Six years after he joined the bank, he was laid off
Just like that
He had worked tirelessly and expected a promotion
But the manager had other ideas
The headquarters instructed that the company needed to employ more female staff in senior positions
He was at the briefing where the decision was made
He didn’t think at the time that his position was tenuous
Three weeks later, he was sacked
It was like a dream at first
How could they sack him?
He had brought in many clients and paid his due
He was also a tithe payer and a prayerful Christian
How could God allow this to happen?
He spent several weeks begging and pleading
The reward he got for his efforts was a severance cheque!
He was owing the bank some money due to a loan he took
The bank deducted the loan and gave him a pittance to survive on
Though he was a banker, he realized too late that he lacked financial acumen
He had lived beyond his means for so long that he thought it was normal
The very month he was sacked, his house rent became due
He had to pay or be ejected
The pittance the bank paid him saved his family from sleeping on the street
He dodged a fast bullet but now found himself facing a slow and steady one
Hunger kept knocking at the door!
His wife had been very industrious
She had learnt how to fetch certain vegetable leaves all around their estate to make vegetable soup
She also introduced starch and concoction okra to the children
Beggars have no choice!
His children adjusted
For three months, his wife improvised
Sometimes going as far as fetching snails in a nearby uncompleted building in order to ensure the children got some meat
But the foodstuffs eventually finished
The maize for maize pudding was converted to local popcorn fried in a frying pan with some sugar
His children managed
Every day he would return home to hunger and frustration
His beloved children were hungry! He was hungry!!! His wife was hungry!!!
All on his watch!
That morning, he prayed earnestly for favour
He had dropped his CV in many establishments
He had walked many hours scouring the city for an opening
But as his people would say “once hunger is removed from poverty, poverty loses its sting”
He desperately needed to ensure there was food on the table for his family
This was what drove him to the market without a penny in his pocket on a Monday morning!
After he left the Madam’s shop everything sank
God had not heard his prayers
The cry of his children kept ringing in his ears
Would he go back home empty handed?
When they look up earnestly to his face when he got home, how would he be able to look into their eyes and say “Sorry, I tried but…”
For the first time he lost his bearing
It felt as if he was drifting on a treacherous sea
He didn’t know when he started crying
The tears came down with power
A woman noticed him
She was not a rich woman
Her entire kiosk was a small wooden structure
She had some sardines, geisha, spaghetti, maggi, salt, sugar, groundnut, cassava flour, beans, rice, millet, corn, and so on
Everything in little bits
The woman called him
What is the problem sir?
He told her his story!
The woman had so little
Her husband did thrift saving in order to give her the little she used to set up her kiosk
The woman offered him water
She packed a bit of this and that from her little kiosk
“Please sir, stop crying, your family should be able to survive on this for a while!”
He didn’t believe it
Someone who had so little was helping him out!
Favour hid in the most unexpected place
He went home rejoicing
What the woman gave him was almost half of her goods
She even included matches, onions, Maggi, eggs, salt and sugar
He rushed home and gave the package to his wife
His family would have something to eat for at least a week if they ate twice a day!
God is wonderful!
The woman didn’t give him a price or a deadline to come and pay for the goods
He knew she couldn’t afford it
He fell on his knees and prayed for the woman
Please bless her and her household
A week later, he got a job
That same week the woman’s husband got sacked
The little she had was consumed by her family
Within a month
She had nothing to sell again
She looked to the heavens and cried to God
He collected his first salary
He ran to the market
They told her the woman had closed shop because she ran out of stock
Where does she live?
Did anyone know?
They described her house to him
It was almost twenty kilometers away
He set out to find her the next day
That morning, the woman and her three children had nothing to eat
Her children came to her
“Mummy, we are hungry!”
She told her children to kneel down
“We will all pray together and God will provide”
Her children knelt down beside her
She said ‘In Jesus name….”
Her doorbell rang
She went to open the door
It was the man!
He told her his testimony
She told him her predicament
He presented her with his business card and a cheque and told her to ask her husband to come and see him
She went to the bank
Cashed the cheque
The money could buy her kiosk ten times over
She was back in business!
Her husband returned home to a nice meal and a cheerful wife
“What is going on?”
“Just as we knelt down to pray God showed up”
She told her husband
Her husband listened to the whole story
The next day, her husband went to see the man
They had a lengthy discussion
Her husband had well thought out business ideas that needed some cash to take off
The man offered him a loan
Her husband started his publishing business and prospered
Poverty became history for both families
PS: This story happened in 2014
The man expected the ocean to give him a little water
It was a brook that offered succor when all else failed
As you read this, I ask that you please help those around you in dire need
You know them, please help them
Just a meal goes a long way sometimes, a job will take some out of depression, for some a kind word will do!
For as many as are reading this while believing God for help
I have sent forth the pneuma, wherever you are reading this in any part of the world
Lift up your two hands now and state your request
Say “Father, in the name of Jesus, I thank you for this opportunity to have my needs met. I ask that money, healing, deliverance, a job, promotion (state what you need clearly) come to me this day! I turn the atmosphere in my environment around, the light of life is shining within me! I have received divine help. Hallelujah! In Jesus name I pray (Amen)
Send in your testimonies, they are riding upon the gale of the wind
Mounting upon the wings of eagles!
As you speak, your joy is full