Lucifer and the sleeping ‘gods’

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After the diagnosis, she was told her body desired sleep. This was one of the complications that made us take her to the hospital. That evening, soon after meals, the pills were taken as instructed. As if God’s own ordained physician was also a prophet sent to the land, frail and wheezing Anaana begun to sleep. How elated we all were. Our elation was short-lived.

Right in the courtyard of our rented apartment, the singing started. The drums throbbed, the tambourines rattled and gibberish of words were uttered all in damnation of the prince of darkness. We have often born with this situation but today’s was worse. On many occasions, in the dead of night, when we are at the peak of sleep after a hard day’s work, we would often be awakened by one or two tenants shouting at the top of their voices commanding heaven to release their marriages, their possessions, and to send back to senders all intercontinental and extraterrestrial ballistic weapons of physical and spiritual destruction.

On some few instances, when I could not endure it, I told them politely I was disturbed by their prayers. I could not say disturbed by the noise of their prayers. You know why!!  In a sharp response, they regularly asked me if I was a Christian and when I tell them of my church, they would berate me for the tranquil and relaxed manner and attitude my church prays.

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Trying not to engage anyone in a theological seminar on the behavioural pattern of Christians and their prayer life, I sometimes retort with this,

And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. Truly I tell you, they already have their reward. But when you pray, go into your inner room, shut your door, and pray to your Father, who is unseen. And your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not babble on like pagans, for they think that by their many words they will be heard…   Mathew 6:5-9.

The babbling continued. Anaana was turning from side to side and her face becoming pale. I observed her with intense fear. The noise was deafening as it was amusing. For about an hour, amidst the drumming and rattling, a section of them were shouting Yaba! Yaba!!, and another was responding Kuta! Kuta!!. I mustered courage and walked to them to at least implore of them to tone down. Getting closer, I spotted my septuagenarian landlord among them. I called him aside and whispered a few words into his ear and left. There was silence for some time then, they were back at it again. This time around, casting out unfamiliar spirits and demon-possessed tenants of the house.

For close to four hours we had to endure the pain. Would God ever do for man what he ought to do for himself by responsibility? In one of the sermons in church, the Reverend Father indicated that some of us appear angelic only on Sunday but use the rest of the six days of the week to commit unpardonable sins.

The question that baffles many is that most of the ‘gods’ of the land who occupy the topmost positions in Ghana are Christians or better still call themselves Christians. Yet still, day in day out, many of the issues that confront us and the ‘gods’ such as; bad governance, sanitation, national theft, smuggling, deceit, foul language and the pull them down syndrome are things that non-Christian believing countries have solved with uttermost ease.

The struggle for fame and the issue of one man one church has brought in its wake, different and questionable doctrines of Christendom and harms; atmosphere of fear, retroactive clairvoyance, noise pollution, unsurpassed superstitions, hatred, extortion bootlicking and blackmail, which hitherto, were minimal in our society.

It is now a common phenomenon to see a highly corrupt politician ascend the altar of an ‘anointed’ man of God to campaign and drive home their policies. The congregants would praise the politician and the politician, in turn, make fat donations to the church. Few preacher men are able to condemn publicly and in strong terms our evil deeds and that of our ‘gods’.

Through the acts of nonchalant, gluttonous and sleeping ‘gods’ and through the works of some wealth seeking anointed ‘gods’ the untold suffering of some low thinking people whose basic problems can be solved by applying practical solutions are blamed on the prince of darkness.

And so, productive time, money, and other resources are wasted as they seek solutions to self-inflicted woes some of whose solutions are right before their very noses.

Joseph Aketema

University of Ghana.

aketema@yahoo.com

(0207389924)

MA Theatre Arts (Media Arts Option)