I was his son’s class teacher. Every morning, he brought the child to school and came for him when school closes. He would often ask how well his child was doing in school activities and I will tell him.
Soon we became talking mates and exchanged numbers. That was when I began knowing his story.
“I’m a pastor,” he told me. “I’ve been married for five years with 2 kids but currently going through a divorce.”
From further conversations, he revealed that he once caught his wife cheating on him and out of anger, he beat the wife. He was ready to work things out but the wife never wanted to stay with him again so she called for a divorce.
My feelings towards him was sympathy. He was calm and very caring towards his kids. He looked like he couldn’t hurt a fly and I trusted him.
I attended his church one day and was very impressed with the way the church was organized–energetic, spirit-filled and awesome preaching of the gospel. My respect for him went up a notch.
One day he proposed marriage to me. I wasn’t surprised judging from the events preceding the proposal. I asked him to give me some time to think about it.
“A divorcee with two kids. A victim of a bad marriage. A pastor and a good man.” That’s how my assessments went. I said yes to him.
But there was a problem; my parents didn’t like the idea of marrying him. They said, “You’re only 27. You don’t deserve to marry a man with two kids. He’s not even properly divorced yet!”
Honestly, I didn’t see any of that as a problem. I love kids and for the fact that he was a pastor was a plus for me. The anointing on him wouldn’t make him treat me badly as a wife and I know that for a fact because I’ve studied him for a while.
Eventually, my parents succumbed but with the classical word of caution, “Don’t say we didn’t tell you.”
We got married traditionally. We couldn’t do a white wedding because he hadn’t completed his divorce processes yet. Mom didn’t attend the marriage ceremony and his Parents were also not there at the marriage ceremony but we went on anyway.
Three months after our marriage, he settled the divorce with his ex-wife. The wife won custody of the kids so his kids left to stay with their mom as we began the journey of bringing forth our own children.
After the divorce, the church population started dwindling. Every Sunday, the attendance got worse.
Just about the time church attendance got worse, my husband too fell sick. Through prayers and medical support, he got well. A day after he was discharged from the hospital, he had a meeting with the church elders.
My husband changed right after that meeting. He gave me cold looks and dished out insults at the least opportunity. He stopped eating my food and stopped sleeping in the same room with me.
Anytime I asked questions, I received insults back. He mostly called me demon or bad luck. I made it a point to know what happened at that meeting.
One of the elders said to me; “At the meeting, Brother James told us that he’s been receiving visions from the Lord and according to his visions you’re the reason the church isn’t growing and you even have devilish intentions to kill pastor.”
Brother James had been the spiritual leader of the church since its inception and according to people, everything he says come through.
“Maybe there’s a spirit after me that I don’t know,” I thought. So I went to see Brother James.
He told me, “You brought a dark cloud into the life of our pastor. Everything is going against him now because of you.” “How do we solve that?” I asked. “We would have to pray about it,” he answered.
I was made to fast for one week and nothing changed afterwards. My husband’s attitude towards me got worse. Every little thing got him triggered until one morning he beat me. I got swollen eyes and sored lips. I couldn’t go out for a week.
It became continuous. Every little thing, he would throw his hands. One day his kids came for holidays and the little one slipped and bruised his knee. When he came back, I told him what happened. His first action was to slap me. I held my cheek trying to explain further, then the next slap landed on my face blurring my left eye.
I had troubles but had no one to talk to, I couldn’t talk to my parents too. Bro James became my go to person. He would pray with me and ask me to fast about it and I always obeyed him.
One night, I had a serious fight with my husband and I had to run away from home. My life was in danger. I ran to Bro James’ house that night and asked him for safety. As usual, we prayed and he offered that I sleep in his house so we go and see the pastor the next morning.
I slept in his hall. At dawn, just about 2am I felt a hand on my thighs slipping up into my pant. I got up suddenly to see Bro James kneeling next to the couch I was sleeping in and trying to force himself on me.
I’d been beaten the night before and all strength had left me. I gathered the little strength left and started resisting his advances. He was strong but I got stronger. I started shouting and that got him scared.
I prevailed and ran out of his premises but had nowhere to turn to. Nowhere to spend the rest of the night so I walked to the church premises and slept there.
Morning came. I was alive but for how long? That morning, I decided never to endure such treatment and embarrassment again. All I wanted was to go home to my parent and apologize to them. It’s been two years and in hell but I knew they would have a place for me.
I walked home, picked a few things and left for my parent’s house. They heard my story. They got angry and asked me never to return.
It became a tussle between my parent and my husband. He denied ever beating me and rather accused me of being a witch and a bad luck. My mum said, “I’m happy you know she’s a witch. We are taking her away so you can have your freedom. We’ll return the drink you brought to ask for her hand in marriage.”
That was the end.
He announced in church the following Sunday that God has delivered the church from the grips of the devil. And told them I was the devil and since we are no more married, God was going to restore everything they’ve lost. Brother James added, “I started having visions about her the very day she came into the picture. She’s a serpent the devil planted within us. Now the serpent is gone, let’s shout praises to the Most High.”
A week later, he brought the drink together with some elders of the church to annul the marriage. James came with them too. After everything, I said; “James, if you truly worship the same God that we all know, have the courage to tell the pastor what you did to me the night that I ran to you”
Their demeanors changed immediately. I knew they had questions but none could ask. I knew James would lie to them but his conscience can’t be fooled.
And just when I thought everything was going to be great, I discovered I was pregnant.
Today, I have a child. A beautiful boy who calls me mom and calls no other daddy. He’s mine and mine alone because I never told my ex-husband about the pregnancy.