James and Marilyn had been married for 21 years. Their love for each other was 21 times stronger than it was when they first met.
They had had their share of a pinch of bad moments here and there since their 21 years together but they had learnt that if they stayed together through the rough times it would take the storm twice as much strength for it to shake them, but if they stayed together with Jesus through the storm no storm in the world would be able to shake them because Jesus calms the storm.
James and Marilyn had a little trouble however. The trouble has been on that had been a burden to them for some years now. The trouble wasn’t with them. The trouble wasn’t with their marriage. In fact the trouble was no in any way a threat to diluting their marriage. If anything the trouble was going to make their marriage struggle as they’d have to grow closer together and stitch even further together to deal with what troubled them.
The trouble was a result of their marriage. It was something that was supposed to be a blessing but now seemed like a curse. The trouble was their son. Their only son who was 16 years old was causing them more trouble in the last 3 years than they had ever encountered in the sum of James and Marilyns years since they day that they were born.
Justin, their 16 year old son. Had beaten up people. Robbed people. Used High School girls who clearly disobeyed their own parents and got burned for it. He had given teachers migraines. He had been expelled from High Schools 8 times in 3 years. At the rate things where going Justin was destined to end up in the Guinness book of world records for doing something evil or much, much worse. James and Marilyn even heard that at a particular school their son was in before he got expelled from it, their sons nickname was THE DEVIL SEED. James and Marilyn didnt find it funny.
James and Marilyn had been praying for their son for years. Their special prayer time for their son had increased over the years. Even since this year they had added fasting every Sunday for their son to change to the list of things they did to save their son from himself but nothing had worked.
James and Marilyn were particularly upset because it was 31st night, the end of 2011. The last day of 2011 and at the beginning of 2011 their Pastor gave a word of prophecy that not only would their son repent in 2011 but he would also be there at the 31st night service.
Now James and Marilyn were about to get ready and go for the 31st night service and the prophecy still hadnt been fulfilled.
James and Marilyn told Justin who lay on his bed and was turned away from his room door that they are going to church and that their is food in the refrigerator in case he needs something.
What James and Marilyn didn’t see before the left their son and got in a car and started driving to church is that their son was crying. Julius was crying in bed. Julius was feeling the weight of his problems. Julius had just found out that he was HIV positive days ago. The discovery had crushed him and he had hidden it from his parents but to make matters worse that morning her had received a note. A note which he now held in his hand as he lay crying in bed. The note was a death threat which was not just a threat. It was a message that came from the most deadly gang in the city.
Julius had committed an atrocity against somebody that was supposed to be under their protection, now he was going to pay for it with his life.
Julius had been rebellious and even almost violent anytime his parents tried to tell him what was right. But now, he wondered if what was right was right all along and all that he was doing was not all against himself and not in his favor.
Julius just stayed in bed crying as the hands of the clock ticked and tucked. He stared thinking about his life. All the wrong things that he had done and all the people that he had hurt. For the first time regret swarm around in circles in the pit of his stomach.
Julius got a point where he couldnt take it anymore. He took a knife and headed into the bathroom to cut himself. He got into the tub and just as he started cutting himself he passed out.
In his dream like state, Julius heard God talking to him. God told him that he loves him and that he can make his life anew.
Julius started hearing all the beautiful thing his parents had said to him to get him to change over the years playing again and again in his brain like re-runs.
It went on for hours. Hour after hour it was like jam packing all the sermons he had heard that he didn’t want to hear all squished together supernaturally so that he could hear every single one of them again and again over the space of the smallest time frame possible.
Julius didn’t know what to do. He couldn’t remember the last time he prayed and he didn’t even know if God would want to hear the prayers of someone like him.
The tab was running and now the tub was over flowing with water. He had already started to cut himself so his was lying in a mix of his own blood and warm water. Some how the mixture seemed to irritate every tissue of his skin and each tissue on his body felt like the water was a bed of very, very tiny needles that where too small to pass through the skin but not small enough to not cause great discomfort to every inch of his body.
Julius couldn’t help himself. He was partially aware of what was happening in the real world. He couldn’t even stand up if he wanted to. Even though he could not see it, he could feel that he was immersed in an overwhelming force of weakness. He couldn’t move and he was slowly bleeding to death.
He had gotten into the tub himself to kill himself. Now the fear of death was wrapped around his heart like a baby blanket from Satan that has a mind of its own.
Julius didn’t know how to pray. He had forgotten so with what was left of him he screamed out, JESUS PLEASE HELP ME. I NEED YOU. IM SORRY. PLEASE HELP ME.
Suddenly, Julius felt a fresh surge of breeze blow into the bathroom. The door was not open, the window was not open so there was no logical reason for there to be any breeze. Julius didn’t need to be a prophet to know that something supernatural was taking place. He didn’t need to be a prophet to know that whatever was happening was as a result of his prayer.
Julius felt a strange feeling go up and down through his body.
Julius cried out, JESUS, IF IT IS YOU. PLEASE HEAL ME OF THIS HIV AND TAKE THIS DEATH THREAT AWAY FROM ME AND I WOULD SERVE YOU FOR THE REST OF MY DAYS.
Immediately, Julius heard a voice very audibly that it was almost tangible say, IT IS DONE.
Julius felt strange. The atmosphere of the bathroom returned to normal and the strange and mysterious breeze had disappeared.
Julius tried to raise his head to look towards the direction of the door wondering if he would see something strange leaving or entering the bathroom but just then he discovered that he could move. His strength had returned. He got out of the bath rub, put off the tap and cleaned himself but the place where he had cut himself had stopped bleeding. That was abnormal because he had cut himself too deep and the wound was too fresh to just stop bleeding that easily. Julius quickly dressed the wound that clearly didn’t need dressing and for the first time in a long while he picked up the bible and put it in his jeans pocket. It was Gideons Free Not To Be Sold BIBLE.
Julius grabbed some money and tucked it in his other pocket. He headed to a medical center and he told another HIV test. When the medical personnel brought back his test result as HIV negative, Julius almost fainted. When the medical personnel helped him balance back to his feet, Julius started singing praise songs that he had learnt as a child in Sunday School and he danced gathering the attention of everyone who could hear his loud voice in the clinic.
Julius didnt care what anyone in the clinic was thinking. He just danced and shouted. They tried to get him under control but he just simply ran out of the clinic singing out loud as he ran. He was heading for his parents church: the church that would soon become his church too once again.
Meanwhile, Julius parents sat quietly near the front row in church listening to the 31st night sermon. It wasn’t 2012 yet and the Pastor had started giving word of knowledge and prophecies of all that would happen in the lives of the congregation come 2012.
Doubt started playing with the minds of Julius parents, after all at the last 31st night the man of God gave a prophecy that their son would know the Lord in 2011 and he would be right there in the 31st night service that was going on right now. But where was their son now, he was at home. If that prophecy didnt work why should they even listen to new prophecies? Why should they waste their time believing them. Why should they shout I RECEIVE like everybody else is shouting when the Pastor declares yet one more good thing that would happen to members of the church come 2012?
The Pastor gave a touching, heart felt sermon filled with wisdom that after his prophecies and declarations. Then he gave an Altar Call.
Julius parents clapped their hands as they and the rest of the congregation did as those who wanted to give their lives to Christ came out of their seats and walked to the front of the pulpit to be lead in the salvation prayer and to be prayed over to receive the Holy Spirit.
Julius parents stopped clapping as their mouths hug open as they saw their own son with tears in his eyes walking to the front of the church along with the rest of the people who were going to give their lives to Christ.
Words cannot express what went on in the hearts of Julius parents as they both cried in the pew as they watched their son pray the salvation prayer. By the time the Pastor ministered the Holy Spirit to the new coverts and they heard their son praying in tongues. They could not contain themselves anymore and Julius parents cried out loud and blew their noses in their handkerchief every other second their hands werent up giving glory to God. 2011 wasn’t over yet and God had fulfilled the prophecy through the mouth of the man of God just like it was said it had happened even though not at the time they taught it would happen but it still happened.
After the service, Julius fell on his knees in front of his parents and apologized for all the wrong that he did. He cried and begged them for forgiveness for all the things he put them through. He begged them for an opportunity for him to be their son again. He begged them for one last chance to be a son that a son should be.
Julius parents cried and hugged him as they told him over and over again, We forgive you, We forgive you, We forgive you..
While they hugged Julius phone made an alert sound. Julius checked his phone an saw that he had received a text message. It was from the leader of the gang that sent him the note that they were going to kill him. The text message read:
I HAVE DECIDED TO LET YOU OFF THE HOOK THIS TIME. BUT THE NEXT TIME YOU SO MUCH AS THINK AS TRYING WHAT YOU DID BEFORE AGAIN. NOBODY WOULD BE ABLE TO FIND YOUR BODY.
Julius looked up with a smile after reading the message and said, MUM, DAD; I WANT TO BE A PREACHER. JESUS IS SUPER, SUPER AWESOME.