“SISTER, CHECK YOURSELF!” (SHORT STORY)
Wrote this piece flash fiction two days ago. Hope you enjoy and learn something from it. You are highly blessed in Jesus’ name.
“Sister, Check Yourself!”
Ngozi had tried to ignore the first call she received that day, but the caller obviously wasn’t going to relent, having called twice again. She felt for her phone on the bedside cabinet and reluctantly opened her eyes to pick the call.
“Don’t tell me I woke you up,” Chinaza scolded.
“You did and I’m not happy about it,” Ngozi replied.
“Serves you right! What are you doing in bed by this time? It’s past 7 a.m.”
“It’s a public holiday, Naza. Independence Day, remember?”
“That is no excuse for you to be sleeping after the sun has come up. Have you forgotten that we have a programme in church today?”
Ngozi thanked God that Chinaza did not launch into her usual lecture on the dangers of allowing Muslims to do their early morning call to prayer before one wakes up. She had not forgotten the programme but had decided she would skip it when the pastor said it would be a whole day’s affair (Healing and Breakthrough Service), rather than the one-hour Prayer-for-Nigeria they usually held from 7 to 8 a.m. every Independence Day.
She told herself that Christians in Nigeria act like they are machines. They fill up their weekends and every holiday with programmes. Sometimes, you need another holiday to recover from the numerous activities you participated in during the holidays, she thought.
She’d also heard there was a mercantile philosophy behind some of the programmes. According to one of her pastor friends, if you don’t keep your members busy with programmes, they will attend those hosted by other churches and from there change church. “Poor membership equals dwindling revenues,” he’d joked.
(Related: A Mind of Her Own)
Still she had seen from experience that there were lots of benefits gained from attending these programmes. She had got her present job after one such prayer programme in her former church. Her eldest sister conceived and later gave birth to twins after twelve years of marriage following a week-long programme at a church she was invited to in Port Harcourt. But Ngozi just wished people knew when to pause.
“I won’t be going to the programme today. I need to rest,” she responded.
Her company had just completed an exhausting marketing campaign and as head of a unit (Babywear), she had put in everything to ensure her unit’s sales margin in the near future will reflect the efforts and resources she and her staff had invested. She hoped to use the Independence holiday on Oct. Ist to refresh herself before resuming work on Oct. 2nd.
“My dear, there is no rest this side of heaven. The devil and his demons are working overtime and you’re trying to rest. There will be enough time to rest when the Lord Jesus returns.”
“Or when we suddenly die,” Ngozi muttered.
“What did you say? Sister, check yourself.”
“I have checked myself and I need to rest.”
“Whenever a child of God starts getting cold feet about the things of God, the enemy is by their door.”
(Related: Prayer Partner)
Ngozi was beginning to lose her patience. Chinaza was a very dear sister, she felt, but not a good listener or empathetic.
“I am not getting cold feet. I just need to rest.”
“Okay, you can come after the morning session.”
“I’m not sure ….”
“Ngozi, check yourself. I will be praying for you.”
“Pray for yourself,” Ngozi retorted. “If you stayed at home to take care of your family, your children would not be so wayward. …”
There was silence on the line. Dead silence. Ngozi knew she had gone too far.
“I am so, so sorry!” Chinaza did not say a word.
“Naza, you know I didn’t mean what I said. Please, say something.”
“I didn’t know that is what you think of me.”
Chinaza was over 10 years older than Ngozi. They met two years back when Ngozi went to buy new clothes for a series of events at her company’s head office in Lagos. Chinaza, who had a big shop on the Ladies’ Fashion Line at Ogbete Market, Enugu, helped her select some beautiful outfits. And as they conversed, she invited Ngozi to her church. The younger lady obliged and joined the church thereafter. Chinaza then undertook to keep Ngozi, the single and busy girl, fervent in the Lord.
“I am sorry,” Ngozi repeated. “Okay, I will go to the service. Can you come and pick me on your way?”
“I’m just paralysed by what you said. Is that what other brethren say about me?”
Chinaza was a single mother with two teenage daughters. She had hoped that she had found acceptance in the house of God, but what Ngozi said brought up old hurts. She knew her daughters were stubborn, but wayward? She had no idea of that. Her earnest prayer had been that her daughters would not end up like her, because she made many mistakes as a teenager.
“No, no, no! I was just angry,” Ngozi lied. She had actually picked her words from what she overheard from another woman in the church. But why make Chinaza sadder, she thought.
“Please, think nothing of what I said. Just come and pick me.”
“I’m not even sure I can make it to church myself again.” Ngozi could hear her struggling to hold back tears. “Bless you,” Chinaza added and cut the call.
Ngozi could have flogged herself. She ran into the bathroom to shower and go to Chinaza.
“Father, forgive me, and make this right. I should never have said something so cruel to her,” she prayed, as her tears mingled with the spray from the shower.
© Edith Ugochi Ohaja 2019
“30. And the apostles gathered themselves together unto Jesus, and told him all things, both what they had done, and what they had taught. 31. And he said unto them, Come ye yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat. 32. And they departed into a desert place by ship privately.” – Mark 6:30-32 (KJV)
“Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” – Colossians 4:6 (KJV)
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It is true that it is good to attend church programmes, but then some churches occupy the whole week with programmes. When do they expect the members to go and work, how do they expect them to attain prosperity financially when they are always in church? When will they have time for their family just like the lady Chinaza, when do they expect members to rest?
I wish Christians will know when to attend programmes, when to rest and how to use their time wisely generally.
I wish so too. Happy weekend, Chiamaka!
I feel churches need to give breaks with their services ..I mean it’s good to serve Lord but we are humans and we need time to attend to other activities that’s affect our lives. ..I feel what ngozi said is really out of line honestly an it should have really hurt naza so bad …but it means it’s something she always had in mind
I’m not against church programmes but too much of everything is bad. Any church programme that is affecting your health or your state of wellbeing does not worth attending because if you slump and die in the church during church service, the service will surely go on
There is actually time for everything, Ngozi really went out of her way, I hope that Chinaza would be able to forgive her. Happy Sunday ma
Happy Sunday to you too, Ezinne!
Ngozi said that to her out of anger…she felt that Chinaza was judging her but i think she would have controlled her anger because what she said might even affect Chinaza in a way that she might draw back from God
I pray Chinaza forgives her
I also think Chinaza should also work on herself and balance her life like worship God at the appropriate time and also see to the affairs of her family.
You got it, Jovita! We all need that balance and self-control. God bless you!
To err is human and to forgive is divine, chinaza ought to forgive ngozi if she has really worked on herself because a true Christian is always with an open mind and forgiving spirit??
To be fair, Chinaza alao needs to work on herself and her home. God bless you!
I didn’t expect that plot twist. I need more of this story Aunty Edith, it doesn’t have to be a flash in the pan. Give us more!! I want to know how it ends
??? This is how it ends, Ononso!
There is always time for everything….
I think the church should start applying Ecclesiastes 3 vs 1 which says there is time for every thing.
Balancing the things we do in this world is very important and necessary. We should learn how to manage our lives to avoid making mistakes and regretting them later. Chinaza did not balance the things she did. She focused on her church programmes and forgot to take good care of her kids. There is time for everything in this world, one has to know what to do and when best to do it.
We should learn how to handle words when angry because words have the ability to kill, humiliate and hurt people. Ngozi said those words out of anger. I hope Chinaza forgives her(though some hurtful words are forgiven,not forgotten). Also,Chinaza needs to balance her world. She should learn to yearn for the things of God as well as spending time with her family.
In as much as what Ngozi said was cruel, Chinaza also needed to hear the truth, because that will help her check herself wholly. Its true our words are as sharp as sword, but they are also needed sometimes if necessary.
Ngozi shouldn’t have spoken to Chinaza like that, even if she thought as such about her she is not suppose to say it in that manner. Also, the issue of going to church should be done with wisdom and not be done in detriment of your family
The tongue is a small member in the body yet does mighty things…it would be good if it is used to make positive impacts instead of negatively as portrayed by Ngozi.
Both Ngozi and Chinaza needs to check themselves…I strongly believe Ngozi actually wouldn’t have made such statement, if not for the continous persistence coming from Naza about worship, but in summary that wasn’t an enough reason to be that harsh/rude…And Naza herself should also know when to let people be, and pick up responsibility of raising her children in the ways of the Lord…
“When a Christian begins to develop cold feet about the things of God, the enemy is by their door” Very very true Ma!
Ngozi didn’t speak well. I think it’s best we think before we talk while praying that our speech be seasoned with salt and grace.
It’s good to always take God’s activities seriously, even the Bible says we should pray without ceasing, the same Bible also says there is time for everything, and prayers can be offered anywhere at anytime, christians should learn how to serve God outside the church
Its sad ! The church is supposed to be where you find comfort where you feel accepted but like NF in one of his rap track said and I quote “the church is where I found God but also where I learnt to judge”, even Jesus rested on the 7th day during the creation . There is time for everything.
Spending the whole day in church doesn’t make someone a true Christian. I believe there is time for everything. What ngozi said to chinaza might be true but she said it in a wrong way and at the wrong time. I pray chinaza will forgive ngozi.
In this aspect is very good to be committed to church activities but at the same time it should be well balanced with other of our engagement because his also a God of order. And on the other hand, we should have self control when we are talking, Ngozi went too far with her words even though it was intentional.
Ngozi went too far maybe because of the pressure from Chinaza. But I think Chinaza will reflect on what Ngozi told her because it seems to be true. Sometimes some people sleep in churches more than they do with their family. They do not care enough for their children’s upbringing which is bad. One have to balance their life. Besides, It is not by going to church every day that will make us true Christians, but by living the life of Christ anywhere we find ourselves. We can pray at home, at work and anywhere. Anyway, Ngozi needs to apologise to Chinaza for such utterance
This is a very interesting piece. As believers we’re obligated with the responsibility of checking up on our fellow believers. This I believe was Chinaza’s intention but when doing this , we should be guided with all wisdom.
Seriously when one began to have cold feet for God’s work or church activities, truly the devil is by the corner.
As Christians, there is a need for us to examine ourselves from time to time just as a car that goes for servicing.
Do not relent because the devil and his agents are never tired.
I think the girl.judt needed to rest. She wasn’t having cold feet. My view.
It is really bad of Ngozi to say that…
My advice is, never use people past against them in subsequent times because it can make them to backslide.
Christians should learn how to build people up and not try to break them by bringing their unpleasant past.
Bad comments sour good relationship. Wisdom is profitable to direct; I wish she had simply stopped at her previous decision instead of going further. It also shows that anger spills fire to the receiver which in many cases are destructive, just like
the story of Ngozi and Chinasa
The generation we live in now is loaded with a lot of activities , churches should fix services with quality time to worship God and also with the congregration’ s interest in mind because i know if the time they had to stay in church on the independence day was still 7 to 8 , Ngozi would have gone for it abd still had time to rest and prepare for the next day ahead.
Sometimes we speak in the heat of the moment without taking time to think our words through. We should always be mindful of what we say because we can kill just by our words.
This is a beautiful piece I must say. And we live in a society where majority cannot manage their times and that will spoil a lot in our society because if the individual in the picture is a parent he/she will end up not having time for his/her kids ,if you’re a student you will end up hurting yourself in your academics even your health is at stake.
I can feel the pain in Chinaza’s heart right now. This kind of thing happens in many churches. Sometimes people tend to remind some one of her past mistakes which God has forgotten. From the story, Ngozi heard what she said to Naza from another woman in the church. That means they have been mocking her in the church, probably because she is more zealous than they are. May God help our churches.
Words are powerful, maybe wrong/bad words are even more powerful. We really should be careful how we let certain words slide through our lips.
I doubt if the relationship between the two ladies will still be the same.
May God help us all!
Chai, I get Ngozi’s point she wanted the best for her friend, but she sha went too far. God help our words indeed to be seasoned with salt, also help us to express our love in the right way, cause sometimes in trying to be caring and loving we end up hurting those who love us.
Firts Ngozi was lucky to have such a friend, that always push her to persevere in the things of God, it takes a lot of energy for a friend to try to correct their friends, because there is this fear of losing the friendship. In the other hand the Bible said pray without ceasing, God doesn’t get tired of protecting, loving and blessing us, so we shouldn’t get tired of being in his presence too.
Yes, Chinaza is a good friend, but she’s also insensitive. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to rest on a public holiday after a hectic week at work.
Wow. This story just reminded me of my personal philosophy, “Never say anything in the heat of the moment or you might regret it and can never take it back”. People should learn to control what they say even when provoked because some statements can open up old wounds and cause hatred among two friends.
That really hurts, we all need the grace to think quickly, it’ll save lots of problems that arise from careless statements. Yes, Chinaza needs to check on her daughters, but she sure doesn’t deserve to hear about it the way Ngozi passed the message. Sometimes we know something going wrong with a friend and we’ll keep mute until she hears it the wrong way. Ngozi should have spoken to her friend after she heard other people talk about her; that way, they would find a solution together and still remain friends.
Woah, ngozi actually spoke out of anger,I guess she felt chinaza was judging her.
I just hope chinaza forgives her
And chinaza needs to know that humans need rest.they need to strike a balance with the things of God .
I sincerely hope nothing happens to their friendship.
Most ladies are always like this and I see no reason why it should be so, we should clip our tongues in order not to commit word murder with it. Ngozi stated the obvious in such a bad way, if she knew chinaza was devoting alot of time to the church while neglecting her role as a mother, she was meant to call her to order in a polite manner not waiting for anger to explode.
Even the Bible said there is time for everything, so christians should try as much as possible to balance this, be sensitive and understanding, I see nothing wrong with one resting.
Thanks alot ma, you are such an inspiration.
Ma please my comments are awaiting moderation since ooo
You see that I need a virtual assistant. Lol! ?
It is very easy to see the fault of others and call them to order, but we find it difficult to ‘check ourselves’ and do same for ourselves.
I feel no one is perfect, so let’s not lose ourselves while trying to put others on track.
It’s obvious that Ngozi didn’t really mean what she said, but it happened anyway, this will help chinaza readjust and take family serious too.
she indeed devoted all her time to church and did not pay attention to her family.
A lot of Christians are like Chinaza, they don’t know when to fall back. I stay in the hostel and most mornings two or three preachers will come preaching at the top of their voices, using megaphones worshipping and praying at a time that people are either trying to read or sleep from a long night of reading. It took people coming out of their rooms every morning to yell at them and outright banning to make them stop.
Now I’m not making excuses for Ngozi’s manner of speech but I understand her annoyance, and this is why we need to take grace from God to control our anger and not speak while angry. We as Christians should make sure that every word that comes out of our mouths are words of edification and when correcting someone should correct them with love.
Lovely! Please see me today!
Oh wow! Well let me start off by saying that with the way pastors and leaders of churches are going, people tend to leave the church not because of anything, but because of an overabundance of lengthy church programs. Of course it isn’t wrong to organize church programs, but it should be regulated, and people really should know when others need a little break and not make them feel guilty about it.
That being said, I think Ngozi was so very wrong in the way she lashed out at Chinaza. No matter how angry you are, self control should be paramount
At least she realized it and wasn’t too proud to apologise.
All in all I have learned to value friendships and not lash out childishly. Hopefully Chinaza forgives her although I doubt if the friendship will go back to normal.
I totally can relate with Ngozi, three days after an evening exam, as I was coming back looking for where to eat, a young lady approached me, excuse me please, you look really tired, I nodded then stopped to listen to her, she told me can I come for a conference in her church, omg! at this moment it took the grace from the holy Spirit to smile and say next time honey.same thing we see in hostels too.
But the important aspect is how we try to react to this kind of situation as regards Ngozi’s response to chinaza.
I have oneday although a joke reminded a friend of how he lost in a competition that he really worked hard for, and truth is that I regret making such comment because he was getting over the situation and all I did was to pour salt into the injury.
We should try to watch our words because the damage from it,most times is irreparable.
Ngozi was right. Though her spontaneous remark wasn’t called for but it’s actually better that Ngozi let it out so that China za could bring herself together and solve things out, although she could use more pleasant language to tell Chinaza.
Meanwhile it’s good to attend services. It’s also good to balance your life activities, doing what’s important first. Healthwise the body needs rest to function. If we are actually in Christ, we walk in love not by “force”The bible also assures us that the Kingdom of God is in us. You mustn’t attend all services to be righteous.
Tiring members with numerous weekly services can be very annoying, in most churches no single day pass without a programme in church and it can be very tiring. It’s not a matter of falling back, we are all humans and we get tired too
Having time for God is one of our top most priority as children of God. But we also need to know how to balance our time so that other areas in our life don’t suffer. Chinanza devoted all her time to attending church programmes. It’s good to attend church services but knowing how to balance our life activities is important.
We need to strike a balance in what we do. i must agree that there is no time to rest because the devil does not rest himself.
Contradictory comment. The first sentence seems more logical though.
No no no, Ngozi’s words were uncalled for. I mean, why take it that far? I understand she was exhausted and all due to work but taking it all out on Naza was way immature.
We should learn to season our speech with salt else they bring our downfall. No matter how much she apologizes to Naza and they make up, those words can never be forgotten.
Kai! That was harsh. Ngozi’s words to her friend sounded more like she is quarrelling and talking to her enemy than a friend. Anyway there is a need to strike a balance and know when to do what and how but more importantly, it depends on the extent of one’s walk with God and the leadings of the Holly Spirit. Thank you, Ma, for this piece.
It is good to check oneself, whether the church going of a thing is reflecting in one’s life and others around. Chinaza hear the unexpected from her friend Ngozi, the word Ngozi used is harsh but that is just what Chinaza need, to check herself and put her two teenage daughters to upright upbringing rather than the church going at all times.
Truly no matter how much we are swamped with church activities and service to God, I’m very sure if we rest once in a while,God wouldn’t mind. Resting doesn’t mean cold feet to church programs,you only need to check yourself if you know you are using rest as a cover up to avoid fellowship with the brethren.
And also,yes let your words be seasoned with salt. Let’s be careful what we say, to whom we say them, and when we say them.
God bless you ma’am
I totally understand Ngozi’s philosophy, Church programmes can sometimes be time choking, but it is still necessary though. Also we should learn to control what we say
Taking God’s activities serious is very paramount but we should learn to balance things. You hear students say, I can’t go for class because I just got back from vigil. You should learn to balance your academic with the things of God. Above all, we should check ourself and never give room for the devil to manipulate us.
Truly, there is time for everything, one part of your life should not suffer because you give too much attention to another part, let us try as Christians to balance our life’s activities /affairs perfectly. Also let’s learn how to control the tongue, the tongue may be small but it remains the most dangerous part of our body.
Well maybe Ngozi was out of line but still people should learn how to stop. trying to convince someone and the person is adamant. the bless solution could have been to pray for the salvation of the person. not making the person feel bad.
Great lesson learnt ma
Balance is the keyword here,we should try to balance our academics and our spiritual life.one should not suffer for the other.
The conclusion of this whole matter is found in the book of song of Solomon chapter one verses six ” Do not look upon me, because I am dark, Because the sun has tanned me. My mother’s sons were angry with me; They made me the keeper of the vineyards, but my own vineyard I have not kept.” The place of our personal and family life should not be neglected at the expense of attending church. Our lives and family are our first ministry and must not suffer loss because at the end we will give account to God.
Yes Ngozi went overboard with what she said but there should be a balance in Christendom. However,this can only happen through the help of the Holy Spirit. On the other hand, fellow Christians need to take a chill pill. The fact that a Christian needs rest doesn’t mean the person has given the devil a free will.
I really think we should be mindful of what we tell people. To us, it may mean nothing, but to the person, it means a whole lot
Ngozi lacks self-control and chinaza should have started her charity at home. We must learn to be checking our home first before any other thing. Balancing our spiritual life and normal life is important.
Attending church is good and so is attending church programmes but then, too much of everything is bad.
Ngozi may have said what she did out of anger but from the story, we see that it’s actually true so in order to avoid being like Chinaza, we should indeed check ourselves and reflect on our individual lives
We should be cautious with our words to people and also try to balance our spiritual life with our physical life
Sometimes we get so carried away when we’re irritated, we go on the offensive, but it is very crucial to check our words and actions.
Ewyaaah… We should really try control our tongues especially when we are angry because we mostly don’t mean what we say in anger but upon realizing it, its already late; heart is broken, deed is done. It’s well
Chinaza has a bad mouth which is bad, ngozi should practice Christianity at home before going to the church.
You transposed the characters. God bless you!
Well, I think Chinaza also needs to check herself and I hope she forgives ngozi because it was said out of anger
To those that believe, they always have good things come to them.. nevertheless, chinaza should try and work on herself too and forgive
Every action has it’s own consequences that comes with it. So,we should always strive to always choose the good options. Being a devoted christian,is no problem,for us,but always looking out for the little things,is what matters the most.
Even the Bible makes it more pronounced on the duties, responsibilities and obligations of parents,to their children,in Proverbs, “Train your child,the way they should go,and when they are old, they’d not depart from it”. “Spare the rod and,spoil the child”. So,we all have specific roles to play.
Miracles happen to those that have faith,just like the way she got her present job and her eldest sister conceived and gave birth to twins because of there faith.
Based on the story, I think Ngozi might not in any way tried to hurt her friend Naza rather she was of the opinion for the need to balance both church activities and family affairs.
There’s time for everything, there’s nothing bad in praying but we should know when to take a break when our health is affected. We should also tame our tounge and mind how we speak to people.
Most churches today choke up their members with several activities every week making these members not to have time for their family causing their children to fallout and become wayward. I wouldn’t blame for Ngozi for what she said she just said it at the wrong time. We should learn to balance our spiritual life with the physical.
When people are pushed beyond their limits, there is a reaction, most often am unpleasant one. Ngozi’s statement however, brought a revelation concerning Chinaza. In the end, the both of them need to check their selves, Ngozi in her manner of speaking and Chinaza in her role as a parent. Hopefully, Chinaza forgives Ngozi.
That’s how some people gets discouraged in serving God because of our statement
When people are pushed beyond their limits, there is a reaction, most often an unpleasant one. Ngozi’s statement however, brought a revelation concerning Chinaza. Eventually, the both of them need to check themelves, Ngozi in her manner of speaking and Chinaza in her role as a parent. Hopefully, Chinaza forgives Ngozi.
I don’t think Ngozi was wrong with what she said, but I feel she should have said it mildly. We need to learn how to choose our words carefully to avoid hurting people.
Be careful of the things you say.
I think the most difficult thing for some people is controlling their anger, it is only the Holy Spirit that can help one who has the spirit of anger.
I also believe that there is time for everything in this world
When pushed beyond limits it is natural to react, but try to watch what you say
There wasn’t any need to further persuade Ngozi after she had declined more than twice.
The two ladies just need to check themselves, Ngozi was too quick to speak and Naza needed to correct things in her home first before trying to get Ngozi
There is power in the mouth,we should be careful of what we say inorder not to demoralize our fellow human being.
We should learn to balance our lives and not overstretch ourselves. This story teaches a big lesson as most parents are running this heavenly race but not carrying their children along.
There are words that can lead to depression. We should always control our anger to avoid lashing someone.
Think about your words before you say them so as to avoid hurting the recipient. Nice moral lesson ma.
It is good to always take the things of God serious. God said we should pray without season but also we should be guided with all wisdom.
Let’s be mindful of the words we speak, my mom usually says
” do you know why we have two ears and one mouth” ??
It’s because we need to listen more and talk less, our mouth is very powerful so we need to use it in the right way
Give your mum a kiss for me. ? She is a wise woman.
Words are very powerful,we should mind what we say.
Nice heart melting story, words are powerful so people should mind how they use it on one.
Learn to be cautious with words and think very well before speaking
Words of the mouth are great weapon’s, some people have killed many soul because of what they uttered from their mouth. We should learn to stop hurting people with our words. Thank you Ma.
We should always be careful during our speech production especially when we’re angry or being pushed to the extreme. Some people appear to be more sensitive than we think they are.
Amazing piece ma
What an unexpected twist
We should always watch what we say and there should be proportioned time for everything
Amazing piece ma
What an unexpected twist
We should always watch what we say and there should be proportioned time for everything if there was Ngozi wouldnt be so stressed with such activities and Chinaza would have time for her children
I really felt bad reading this story, sometimes we should always try to think deeply what we want to say before we say it. The heart is deceitful and from the abundant of the heart the mouth speaks.i really don’t support ngozi, if she didn’t want to go she would have end it with NO than killing someone instrumentally with her hurtful words.
There’s time for everything and one needs to balance one’s life perfectly well. Nevertheless , we should watch our tongue and the kind of words we speak.self control is really absolute. Just hoping chinaza will forgive Ngozi.
What a great lesson to be learnt here, ma?. The truth will always hurt. Naza needed to hear it plain and simple. It was better she was taught the truth by a close friend rather than outsiders who would mock her. Maybe Ngozi’s intentions weren’t all that genuine but either way, everything happens for a reason. The two should go check themselves!
Ngọzi just needed a break and didn’t want to break down by attending church activities. I think churches should understand that their members are humans too and have things to do outside church. Some church members are not helping matters at all. Chinaza is portraying a “holier than thou” attitude making Ngọzi look like a backslider. I feel for Ngọzi. She just had to give it to Chinaza hot hot because she didn’t want to absorb all of that emotional blackmail. Though it came out wrong but it was necessary for Naza to have a rethink.
There is time for every thing and lets asked the Holy Spirit to help us to tame our tongue because it can tear or buildup.
Be careful of wat u say to others and wat u say about others too ,there is power in the tongue
Words! So powerful that they can destabilize a person. From arguing about church programs to calling her children wayward. It’s quite disheartening! Anyways, we should all “Check ourselves”
We should learn to be persuasive and not condemning, if chinaza had persuaded Ngozi enough she would have accepted to come to church. She is just human who can be tired, I don’t see anything wrong in her saying she needs to rest for that day.
As much as Christians should engage in church activities, we should take time to rest sometimes which will even lead to better results.
If there is anything we should learn to control it is our tongue because that little thing is very swift and before we know it,it has said what can hurt a person even more than the cut of a knife.Another thing is what we listen to because assuming Ngọzi didn’t hear what other women were saying,she wouldn’t have made that statement.
May God give us the grace to control our tongue,poor Naza
Saying bad things to people really cuts deep into them, especially if they are your friends.
We all have to be able to control ourselves when we are angry.
The tongue is very powerful.. we should watch what we say to people even when we are angry
The truth is bitter but it is always the truth
This is the mistake most Christian make, they carry church on their head forgetting their homes.
No wonder most christian children are always wayward its because of negligence
Ma I have a question was ngozi right by tell chinaza that she want a break .
Sometimes I think if I don’t go to church I will be sinning against God
No, she wasn’t wrong. Church is helpful but when we have been overstretched, we need time to recuperate. What would be wrong would be neglecting our fellowship with God entirely- prayer, worship, Bible study. Those ones are non-negotiable, even though we may not do as much of them as we normally do when we are fully okay.
Our mouth is a very delicate,yet dangerous part of our body, the power of life and death lies within our. Most times we are so egar to let out words out of our mouth, not thinking of the effects it has on others. Let’s be guided.
A nice story with an amazing twist, woah.
Truly, we should not grow cold in the things of God but we also should learn how to balance our lives.
Words, they have the ability to build and break a person, rather than killing with our words, let’s give life with our words.
Once again, nice one ma.
We should learn that whatever we is in the heat of anger will be regretted later. So we must learn to control our emotions.
We don’t just kill someone with weapon but also with hurtful words whether it’s said when angry or not.
The tongue is so powerful. We don’t kill using only weapon but also with hurtful words whether it’s said when angry or not.
Words have a way of killing people spirit, one should know when to use words correctly without necessarily putting it in a manner that’s bad.
One shouldn’t be judged unnecessary too, there should be a balance between everything.
There is power in the tongue, we should be careful of what comes out of our mouths, because we can’t take them back.
The need to be careful with our choice of words at each moment can’t be over emphasized. Thanks for this interesting message ma!
The truth is bitter but it is always the truth
This is the mistake most Christian make, they carry church on their head forgetting their homes.
No wonder most christian children are always wayward its because of negligence
Moral lesson : We should try to balance things in our lives.
I think Naza should have understood that her friend was tired and needed a break.
Some church members can be so annoying ?
Well, Church activities are good, but I believe that the light of God we carry is needed more in the world and not in the church, hence, the Church should serve as a refueling station where believers come and get refilled and energized and equippded for greater works in the world. Over bothering people with too much Church activities can lead to pent up provocations as exemplified in the story.
Yet another amazing piece. Words can either make or mar an individual. However I don’t think Ngozi was having cold feet,she just needed to rest. The flesh is week. More so, Naza needs to check herself and her household.
The tongue is very mighty. We don’t necessarily need weapons to kill someone but the words we say to someone can kill them so we should learn to bridle our tongue.
Be careful of the things you say because there is power in the tongue
We should always be mindful of what we say or do, because it can be hurtful at times and I believe that there is time for everything, going to serve the lord is not wrong, but imagine going to work on weekdays and on weekends,when one’s supposed to rest, you begin to do other activities. Thank you Ma.
What ngozi said was extremely wrong and disheartening. She didn’t mean to hurt naza but she was hurt anyway. Sometimes it’s good to think before you say something. You might forget but it remains with the person..
The words that come out of someone when angry are always the truest.As a Christian is not all by praying but also on how you use to take care of your home.prayer without work is dead.
People should be careful with what they say out of anger. I get that Ngozi was angry but she shouldn’t have spoken to chinaza like that, the best answer to give when you are angry is silence .
We should think before we talk to avoid hurting people with our words.
There are words that can lead to depression. We should always control anger to avoid lashing someone with our tongue.
I think Ngozi went beyond her boundaries. Sometimes our words could actually kill a person’s heart.
The most joyful thing Ngozi did which I admire is that after everything she returned to her Father in heaven to seek forgiveness. That was the key thing Judas Iscariot missed out after committing a grievous offence. He forgot that there is a loving Father somewhere beyond. Cast your burdens on Jesus He’ll gladly sort them out.
Words are powerful,we should be careful with our choice of words because we can hurt people with them. Think carefully before you speak.
I think Ngozi used the wrong words at chinaza because of her failure to understand dat she is actually tired.Irrespective of that,we just have to be careful with our words towards people.
This goes a long way, most people are so focused on church programs and activities forgetting they have a family to take care of, time to rest, work and do some other things. Going to church is actually good but one should know there is time for everything. Even in schools, students leave academics to focus more on church activities, time for lectures they will be in church and at the end they fail. The human body is not robotic!
I have read the post and your replies to people who commented. I still believe that when we are tired we should ask the holy Spirit for strength.The job she has comes from God and I believe if she doesn’t have that job she would have been frequent in church. From the story I believe she wasn’t sick but tired,she can just ask God to renew her strength. Thank you for sharing this ma.
Asking God to renew one’s rest does not preclude actual rest. God does not allow us to violate natural laws willy-nilly. Even Jesus took His disciples to a quiet place to rest when they were exhausted.
Sometimes we say hurtful things when we are angry even though they are true. Ngozi said something hurtful to Naza but this will make Naza thread cautiously with her children.
It’s high time we members of the church begin to manage our time wisely,God doesn’t do “magic” he does “miracle” rather.
Nowadays, individuals are more religious than being supposed Christians. Personal space and a better manner of approach would be better if we can get it from the so called Christians.
What ngozi said to chinaza was hurtful . But at the same time it is good that chinaza knows what people are thinking of her and her daughters .
The statement from Ngozi was very harsh.
But it points to the fact that Chinaza paid less or no attention to her children, which is very bad.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT. Sincerely, Christians in Nigeria act like they are machines. They fill up their weekends and every holiday with programmes. Truly apportioning time and management is worthy in our present dispensation regardless of the philosophy quoted in the storyline. Moderacy is a virtue which all should agree to. My take though
though Ngozi’s words were harsh,what she told Chinaza is the truth,chinaza needed a serious check on herself and family too, life is more than going to church 24/7.
Christianity from this part is more like who goes to church more often and attend all programs are the real Christian , sometimes we prefer prayers to work .
Sincerely , ngozi’s sarcastic statement was too extreme for a good friend like naza.
Moderacy is a virtue which all should agree to. My take though.
Often at times, we fail to take cognizance of the power in our tongue. What we say to people can make or mar them. In fact, the world will be a much better place the moment we all decide to think before we talk.
Besides, I believe that attending church programmes doesn’t make one righteous. What does is your belief in the teachings of the Bible. Many Christians fail prey to all these wannabe pastors today because they have been brainwashed into believing they can prosper and make heaven at last by attending a plethora of church programmes and supporting the church financially.
Church is a place every true believer will long to be in.. But at some extent, I think they should be a short break and also time for the worshippers to rest from church activities.
Ngozi kept on creating excuses just to rest and finally made the derogatory statement out of annoyance.
Such plot twist! I really pray Chinaza will forgive Ngozi because I think she only said it because she was tired and needed rest
Whenever following up someone to Church try to know if the person is in the right frame of mind because at that point you may end up pissing the person. Or still you can politely and calmly try to convince the person, but if it’s not working, let it go for that moment.
There is nothing wrong in attending a church programme. It is left for members to create a balance between their work life and Christian life.
Every one can’t be free at the same time. If a church programme fits your schedule, then you should attend but if the programme is fixed on a day you wouldn’t be able to make it, there is still no problem. What matters is that you have the things of God at heart.
Ngozi’s statement was really harsh and unruly, but I think people should have their own space, not being in church doesn’t make you the worst sinner.
Two wrongs can never make a right. Ngozi crossed the line by that statement she made and also Chinaza should have listened to her after all, she is an adult who can make decisions . Also Ngozi should not give room for gossips, as it is unpleasant to God’s sight. We should always learn to be our brothers keeper.
We should be mindful of what we say to people. Nice story.
We should learn to watch the words that we say when we are angry because words have the potential to destroy people. Words can mere or make people so watch what you say.
Lol ..someone like me would apologize and still stay home to rest 😹
Words are so powerful, we should always mind our words.
Whenever we are angry, let’s try not to say words that will hurt the other person. I hope naza forgives her. Happy weekend ma’am
Killing is not just when you struck someone with an object, our words when not properly structured kills faster than anything.
On the other hand, you can’t have a chunk of wood in your eyes and be wanting to remove a grain from your neighbour’s.
Let’s be guided!!
No words on this. I’m still trying to process. Thank you on this ma. We should be mindful of the things we blurt out no matter the situation. Words cut deeper than daggers.
I feel there is supposed to be time for everything we do on earth. Time to attend services and time for rest, let’s not mix things up.
In as much as Chinaza was persistent and persuading Ngozi to attend the chruch programme, Ngozi drew the line with her utterances.
Both sisters ought to check themselves.
To Chinaza, Ngozi is the last person she would expect such from.
Despite all this, forgiveness is key. Inasmuch as she has been offended, she should forgive Ngozi just as the Lord will.
Ngozi on the other hand disappointed the Word of God which says”Behold old things are past away and all things become new”.
It seems like Ngozi is feeling overwhelmed by the busy schedule of church programmes in Nigeria.
This flash fiction piece perfectly captures the Nigerian Christian culture of attending multiple church programs and services. It’s interesting to see how the protagonist, Ngozi, navigates her own beliefs and the pressure from her friend to attend a whole day’s program on Independence Day. The dialogue between the two characters is realistic and adds depth to the story.