So today I was wondering which of the stories I should recount
I think the best way is to continue chronologically so here we go
Growing up in a local assembly church meant growing up in a church family where everyone knew your family.it also meant you knew other people and church family was really part of our lives then .What could be dangerous sometimes is befriending some people who happened to know everyone with their secrets.
I remember going to church for all night prayers at about 9pm and having to sleep on the benches (before we bought white plastic chairs) as we waited for 12 midnight to start the prayers.
Somehow those days the reason for prayers at midnight was that that is the time when the people from the kingdom of darkness aka the witches and wizards are most active and as such we have to counter their activities.
There was also this notion that at that time ,God will be bombarded with less requests so he will listen and answer the prayers quicker.
I am so glad I have grown beyond that understanding although it didn’t really make sense then as our time zones are different from those of others around the globe and God is persistently being bombarded by various persons .It gives me much pleasure knowing that God is big enough to hear all of us at once .And besides, coming into self-awareness, I realize I am more of a morning person and such I prefer to join prayers done in the morning since that is when I am at my best .
Apart from prayer, there were also songs sang as choruses in church then.I am laughing now also remembering some of the songs we used to sing them
“Jesus a carpenter.hammer the devil hammer ,a carpenter, hammer the devil hammer” .
This song was also demonstrated out as we sang it holding an imaginary hammer and hitting on something while dancing round .
“Satan comot for road ,I drink holy ghost ,I no get brake o ,I drink holy ghost
And one day,in one of our meetings, someone raised a song like one of the above and a pastor’s wife got up to say we should stop singing all these songs that appear to come from the beer parlour 😀
Talking about Pastor’s wives, you know those days in a local assembly, the Pastors were paid very little. And so the women in the church had to contribute and on occasions buy the outfit (blouse &wrapper) for the Pastor’s wife. It was a position that was not very enviable.
So you can imagine back in the days when the Pastors’ wives were seen and not heard, we had a new Pastor transferred to us .This Pastor had the proper perspective and his wife sat on one of the chairs on the altar .You may not fully get it now in this age but then, that was like a proper revolution. Only the men sat on the chairs on the altar and it was usually the Pastor and if there was a guest minister The members of our local assembly did not find that funny and to add insult upon injury, he called her “the Queen of the local assembly”
Imagine the rolling of eyes then but now it is actually normal to call the Pastor’s wife First Lady so it means that that my Pastor was right then. But looking back now, I realize how that change could have been made smoother if the cultural context was put in perspective as well as educating the people.
But you know sometimes those days, some Pastor’s wives could be overbearing.I remember one particular one we had who loved to sing after the Praise worship had concluded.
She would pick up the mic and want to start a new session. The problem was that she could not sing and interestingly enough, my brother and his friends were the instrumentalist then .So one day ,she tried to do the usual singing and then it looked like the piano was not working and so she couldn’t really sing
However when we got home ,my brother’s friend confessed that he actually switched off the piano while he was acting like he was trying to adjust the piano .We had such a good laugh at home and that Pastor’s wife also reduce her singing after the Praise &worship from then.
There was one other Pastor’s wife that had two other lady friends in the church. She met them in church and befriended them. They all sometimes wore the same clothes to occasions or to church. Thinking about it now, it must have not helped her relationship with the other women . I am not saying a Pastor’s wife should not have friends in church but being very careful to ensure that we are not making a public statement of our favourites would help the congregation better.
I will not even mention the issue of prophecy, when people will get up and prophecise that they had heard from God. Some prophets would be so dramatic about the whole prophecy thing. Those days they would do some gymnastics and speak in the “heavenly language” for a long time (more than 5 minutes in my estimation) and then just give a 4-word prophecy of “I am coming soon” repeatedly.
For goodness sake I thought then. you mean all these talk it is only these 4 words we got from God!
Some other prophets however took their prophecy to the south, using it to manipulate people to marriages and you know that fear that descends on the congregation when it ends with “thus saith the Lord”.
Let me sign off for here and hopefully ,there will be some juicier gist next week.