Tony is not perfect but he has never lifted his hand on me ever since we exchanged vows. No genuine Christian lifts his hands
on his wife,” Melody exploded unable to contain her rage. “Melody, please get a hold of your emotions. How can we be
of help to her if you carry on like this?” cautioned Sarima. Turning to Jennifer, she probed further. “Has his mother any knowledge about all of this?”
For fear of letting her emotions loose, she shook her head in the negative. Sarima took hold of her hands and squeezed them as a way of giving her solace. “What has his attitude been like after the incident?” she further questioned.
“Well he’s been feeling dejected and frightened of loosing me. Right now he’s just more of a vulnerable child that can be
waylaid at any minute. To be candid I have never seen him like this,” Jennifer replied.
Melody cleared her throat, drawing the attention of the other ladies refusing to allow Jennifer’s heart soften so much.
“Babe, do you remember Belema Davies who got married during our third year? Well she died some months back as a result of
domestic violence,” Melody said looking in Jennifer’s direction. “What! How did that happen?” Jennifer asked in shock. “I heard
her husband pushed her down the stairs and she forcefully landed with her head during one of their fisticuffs. My dear I know you are at crossroads right now
but before making any decision, you need to realize that your life is of equal importance too,” Melody advised.
“Sweetheart you know that by being a Christian you cannot divorce your husband except on the grounds of infidelity. I’ll advice that you attend the counseling
sessions with an open mind believing that God will step in. We will be praying for you and always remember that your happiness lies only in God and not in your husband,” Sarima said.
Michael could tell that there was something different about his wife of late. Gone were her monosyllabic responses and withdrawal. She had suddenly
become receptive and full of life once more, obliterating every trace of the pains and sorrow of the past weeks. He was sure
something had occurred in her life but could not place his fingers on it. Pastor Damian said a short prayer asking for
God’s direction and took a brief exhortation from Ephesians 5: 22 – 29 admonishing them to let God’s kind of love be at the
center of their marriage. He studied them for a while and could not help but notice the joy that radiated through Jennifer
and the sober look on Michael’s face causing him to praise God silently. The clergy then gave them room to bare their hearts out to one another before
proceeding with the counseling. Michael quickly went on his knees with tears in his eyes seeking her forgiveness for his violent and hideous attitude towards her.
“I know I have hurt you beyond measure. I’m not even deserving of your forgiveness and love. Your being cold and withdrawn
these past weeks really got to me and have given me a glimpse of what I put you
through all this while. I’m truly sorry my love. Tell me what you want me to do and I’ll do it but please don’t cast me away,”
Michael appealed to her.
Jennifer, who had been quiet all through, helped him up to his feet before addressing him. “Where is the Godly man that chided me when I told half truths? The spirit filled man that saw sin for what it truly is and
eschewed lies and deceit, the man that loved me to a fault and would never afford to see me sad. I want him back baby. That is the man I crave for,” Jennifer responded holding his hands in hers.
“By God’s grace I’ll be that again. Don’t give up on me I beg you,” Michael pleaded. “It’s okay baby,” she replied, all smiles, giving him a hug. “You’ve been unusually happy in spite of everything. What is going on?” Michael asked. “In my quest to make our marriage work, I sought to please you in every possible way because I thought my joy comes from you thereby making God come second in my life. But I recently discovered that my joy and peace does not come from you or any other man but from God. Therefore I can’t displease God in order to please you. Please don’t misunderstand me baby. I love you so much but henceforth God comes first in my life, I mean our lives.”