Going through Abram’s time and his situation(s), I viewed his world through his eyes, but in our times. It’s #FreedomFriday and I get to do what I want – with freedom. Yippee!
I remember minding my own business and helping daddy out with his Cattle business with my brothers Nahor and Haran in Ur of the Chaldees, hopeful that when he passed on, the inheritance will become mine or at least most of it, as the eldest. I recall the many father-son conversations and bonding time we usually had in the cool of the evening sipping on coconut water, whilst waiting for food to be ready; strategizing on the best location for grazing the animals. Oh! How I truly loved those time, until Haran died and left Lot without a father. I remember them now with sadness.
You see, daddy had to relocate from Ur of the Chaldees heading towards Canaan (I’m not sure what the real reasons were though) but when he got to the city of Haran, he pitched his tent there and died there. Despite our bonding time, I couldn’t bring myself to tell daddy that God had spoken to me and told me to leave Ur of the Chaldees, my siblings and parents and follow Him blindly on promises of a great nation, blessing, a great name and the rest! Who would believe me? Surely they would think me crazy. So I played along and though I am sad he died in Haran, I’m sure you can connect with my feeling of relief that I didn’t have to break daddy’s heart after he lost Haran. Hmmm.
I obeyed God and left Haran, got into famine, left for Egypt, had to ‘battle’ with Pharaoh for Sarai, my fair-to-look-upon-drop-dead-gorgeous wife. Thank God they didn’t kill me there. And did I just thank Him? Yes o! He had a hand in my deliverance. From enemies without, to enemies within – my herdsmen and my nephew’s herdsmen having a scuffle amongst themselves. Over what? Grass and space! My own brother’s son, whom I allowed to join me. Shebi, God had said to leave them behind, but I couldn’t let him waste in the village and become a bum. Well, no issue, we parted.
Did I mention to you that Sarai was barren? Yes, God gave me silver, gold and cattle; you would say I became famous in a way. But I wasn’t satisfied. Who will I leave all these wealth for? Definitely not Lot! After changing our names from Abram to Abraham and Sarai to Sarah, God blessed us with Isaac. In-between, there was Ishmael, but I really didn’t have a hand in that matter, Sarah arranged it and I simply obeyed, (smiling at the thought).
God has come again o! (becomes pensive again) After all these years of listening to Sarah endure mockery from Nahor’s wife, then Hagar (her maid). After all these years that He had blessed us with Isaac and our home was filled with laughter, he says to me, “Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” – Gen 22:2 What will people say to me? That I left my inheritance for an unknown land, made blood money and used my son as sacrifice to appease the gods. They will not understand that God spoke to me. Why would God give me a son after all these years of waiting and then take him away from me by my own hand? *God, abeg if nah joke, I no dey laugh. If you wan kill am, use Your own hand. But then, Abraham says resignedly “I had no hope of ever having a son until He promised me one, so if He wants the son back, I will give him.” What will I say to Isaac? How will I convince Sarah? When did I become a mad man? I left family and friends, tired to deceive a King who had the power to take my head off because of my wife and now I want to kill my son, my long-awaited son, whom I planned on reliving the times Terah (my father) and I had. “When you are faced with this type of dilemma, who do you pray to?!” Abraham pondered as he gathered his bags for the journey of sacrifice.
Words in Pidgin English:
*God if it is a joke, I’m not laughing with You. If you want to kill Isaac, do it yourself!
©2016. Frances Kelvin Otung. All rights reserved.