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Praying: Naija Style!

There is this adage in Ibibio, “anie mfana, anye anie inua akam” meaning “He who has the problem, has the mouth for prayers”.

Like my friend would say, “bong akam nangha ufana” meaning “pray as much as it bothers you”.

Recently, at the meeting I was called upon to give the closing prayer.

As it was a meeting filled with people from different church denominations, I decided to keep it short and simple. I quickly thanked God for the day and the opportunity He had given us to meet, I thanked Him for the success of the meeting, then I went ahead to pray for grace for us to hold our next meeting and lead us safely back to our destinations.

After the prayers, this guy walked up to me and said, “what sort of prayer is that?” I was surprised, so I asked him what he meant. He said, “that’s like a Nursery school pupil’s prayer. Very straight forward, I didn’t feel the power of the prayer”.

I began to wonder how he expected to feel the power of prayer, so I told him I didn’t understand.

One of my girl friends who was also at the meeting came to us and said, “don’t mind him, he wants us to start warfare in this place”.

He proceeded to say, “Don’t you have witchcraft, ‘mkpo ufok’ or the likes in your village? You could have used that chance to fire them.” Hehehe! We all laughed.

That’s when I knew my guy was kidding, but then he reminded of something.

There was a time, I had to pray for someone then he would also pray for me, more like prayer partner, eheheh! Don’t ask any question, bring your thoughts back. So I asked him to go first.

This guy was just jumping everywhere, and saying words like, “mandelebose…rabashataya”. Hianh!

At a point, I just was praying inside me that the prayer would end soon. I am not saying the Spirit might not have been at work oh!

It’s just that…well, this guy na my personal person, and had just started attending one of these New Churches in town, so e just come surprise me with the whole ‘gingering’.

Anyway, he finally finished, and I prayed. After the prayer he asked, “why is your prayer so calm and quiet? Less movement and your voice was pretty low. Anyway, I know that’s your Church’s style.

You know, sometimes you have to take it by force.”. I just lacked words to reply him.

Yesterday I was passing by a particular church, I no go mention name. I noticed it was sort of children’s service.

The preacher was leading the prayer session, and he was ‘charging’.

I noticed one little guy stamping his foot on the ground, shaking his head and making fist like movement, he could have been 5 years old.

All the other kids made similar movement, and were SHOUTING. I just wondered to myself, does it seem like if you don’t shout, kick things around, jump and run around, your prayers won’t be answered or is it Naija style?

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