After the praise and worship, I huge man took to the pulpit and delivered such a warm message on forgiveness. I hadn’t heard anyone preach that passionately. Uncle Ben is such a gentle soul, loving and charming. The service seemed too short perhaps because I was so hooked to the word that night.
When he was done, pastor Yusuf approached him and they spoke for a few minutes, then he beckoned us to join him. He sat right on the pavement just beneath the pulpit then he shock my hand and said, ‘I am Benoni Mugarura but everyone calls me Uncle Ben, what do they call you?” Arnold, everyone calls me Arnold I answered. Then he looked at Shamim and asked her the same to which she answered then he adds, ‘I have been told you came in last night from Mbale, so what is your story?
At this point I was really concerned, why was everyone asking for this story? What was special about us? But because I had fallen in love with Uncle Bens gentle person, I quickly told him how I got saved on Sunday then Shamim came to me with job offer which I accepted and on Tuesday we were headed to Kampala to a job that didn’t exist only to end up on the streets until Aunt Grace found us.
Then he asked tell me more about this Aunt Grace. Pastor Yusuf interjected and said, she worked with him at the guest house and that’s how we met him earlier in the day. Then he asked, so where are you staying at the moment? At Aunt Graces home we answered. For how long? We are not sure. Then he said something that changed everything. He reached his hand and pulled out a 20,000 Shilling note and said, “This money has been in my shirt pocket since Thursday last week, I have had a need but I never used it because God knew you were coming, here take it is for you.”
I reached out my hand to take the money then he added, “And Arnold, I have to see you on Sunday I must introduce you to the church. They have to know you and I believe there is more to you than what you have said and I want to hear your whole story.” That meant we weren’t going back to Mbale just yet. He bade us good night and off we left with an over joyed Pastor, he kept saying, “Praise the LORD, I cant believe what has happened, he is going to introduce you to the church, such blessings don’t come that easy.”
We talked for a while as he explained the importance of Sundays meeting. He needed to make sure that we didn’t skip the meeting. He helped us get a taxi to City Square and then we hoped onto another one taking us to Nakawa. When we got back home, we found Aunt Grace waiting eagerly, she wanted to know if our meetings with the Pastor had been productive and what Uncle Ben said. When we told her the whole story, she burst out in praise, I had never seen someone so excited like she was. She lifted her hands and said, “I praise you God because you never fail your children.” She wept as she sang songs for almost half an hour, Shamim joined in. I had never felt so heathen like I did that day, I knew no song at all, I sat there with a strange look on my face. The best I could do was clap but that too wasn’t organized because the songs they sang flipped from one to another with no set format making it hard to even follow.
She spoke to us like a mother, and told us how God does answer prayer. She believed God sent us to meet her for a grater purpose and she was full of praise for the Living God, she pulled out her bible and preached to us. She told us to have faith in God and that we didn’t have to go back to the village. I like the sound of the last word she said because I hated the village with all of its poverty, it was the last place I wanted to be.
It was a cold night after a heavy evening down pour. We sat round the charcoal stove as we waited for the dinner she was preparing for us. The stove warmed us as we chatted into the night, after the meal we went inside and as she had done the previous night, she prayed for us again until the wee hours of the morning. I sat up with her, listened to every prayer she made and repeated after her. I don’t know at what stage I slept off all I remember is that I slept like a child. In the morning Aunt Grace walk us up, she was so full of joy, she said the LORD spoke to her. Now that woke me up? The LORD did what?
And we know that all things work together for the good of those Him and are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28
To Him who alone sits on the Throne, I write.
Pastor Mark A Odeke Mark
For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen. Romans 11:36