I think children are the best things that ever happened to this planet. I mean children of all ages -from toddlers to teenagers, whichever category they fall into. There I was thinking Christmas wouldn’t be fun, but it turned out ‘funner’ than I ever imagined.
First, Christmas service was on a different level. It was as if everyone suddenly realized that the gift of the child-cum saviour Jesus was the greatest gift of all times because everyone danced and sang and smiled and blew whistles and trumpets as if all the hassles Nigeria had thrown at us this year were nothing, or even never happened (I guess the hassles were really nothing in comparison with salvation and the fact that God was still merciful enough to give us life).
Second, the teenagers in my church followed me home for Christmas lunch and believe me, there couldn’t have ever tasted or been a better lunch. We ate everything I had, from Garri and Afang soup to rice and pepper soup to Jollof rice and even noodles. I had a lovely time just watching the teenagers eat and laugh and throw jabs at each other from my position on the arm of the sofa in my living room. I have taught these teenagers in church for some years now and I really love them . In spite of all the problems they come with, it really is very easy to love children – I can’t imagine why some people abandon theirs.
Maybe because we were in a less formal setting or should I say outside the church, but we really got to talk and bond more than usual. We talked about salvation, eternity, academics, relationships, money, the future, and it was all interesting until one of the more quiet girls followed me into the kitchen and told me something that almost made me scream and cry and throw plates all at once.
It was a long conversation we had. The summary of it though was that her own father was abusing her sexually, in fact, he had been doing so since she was eleven. I couldn’t understand how her mother could be in that same house and not notice what was going on. Did she think her daughter was naturally quiet and timid, didn’t she know children who expressed such traits were usually victims of some sort of abuse? I felt like keeping the girl in my house and going straight for both parents. It’s crazy how high the incidence of sexual abuse and perversion is becoming, children are no longer safe, their family which is supposed to be their safe haven is fast becoming a playground for predators (these sick predators range from parents to cousins, uncles and aunts) and it isn’t only the female children that are victims, the male children share the same fate.
All in all, I had a blast this Christmas. Who says one has to be married and give birth to children before one can have a room full of children, bringing joy and laughter and filling one’s world with sunshine. I have taught most of them from their kindergarten ages and it’s fulfilling and gives me a joyous feeling to see how they have all blossomed into young teenagers – some of them are stable in their walk with God, others are still undecided & the rest are just playing church – I still love them all. The situation with the abused girl was the only thing that dampened my day, but still… I thank God.
I am going to deal with this issue the best way I know how to, and her father is going to have to answer for his crime.
I will call the Cece Yara help line (08008008001) for a follow up on her case. They are an organisation that provides help to children who are being sexually abused.
Thank God for one more Christmas on this side of life and may God protect our children from predators. We all need Jesus now more than ever.
Memoirs of a Single Christian Lady is a weekly series. Read previous articles HERE.