God has something to say
God has something to say
For God has something to say
Then my heart would skip three times over, only calming down when I realised that yet again, I wasn’t the victim. This was why I hated Sundays.
I was only 10, or was it 11? The scene was the pre-teens class at the Redeemed Christian Church of God where my entire nuclear family worshipped. The teacher was an almost obese woman, (I think she was the Assistant Pastor’s wife) who only came around our class once a month.
She would sing the song above, jumping around with her tambourine like our class was a f*cking circus where she was the solo star of the show while her large behind would bounce along in tandem with the beat of the noisy instrument in her hand.
And when the “You!” part came, she would randomly point to any one of us to recite a memory verse offhand. I always had John 3:16 right at the tip of my tongue but I was never picked – someone always said it before I ever got the chance sooo… I got to thinking I was just lucky and would never be called upon. I even imagined an angel by my side telling her not to point to me. Heehoo.
Then one Sunday it happened. She wasn’t supposed to have come but our teacher wasn’t around and the class was in a ruckus. The noise must have attracted her. So she entered, scolded us severely and began the deadly game.
I knew within me that day wasn’t going to be my day.
So I changed my ammunition, ditching John 3:16 for Hebrews ugh… well that part about faith being the substance of things hoped for and evidence of things not seen. Yes that one.
I almost always manage to make a mistake when reciting that verse (even till now) but I was convinced that nobody would recite that verse so I loaded my magazine and waited for war.
Then I zoned out, daydreaming of the sumptuous rice and bright red stew with chicken waiting for me at home, outside this prison, when I began to hear the finishing words of my selected memory verse… but not from my mouth.
I looked at the perpetrator with a bemused + this can’t be possible + this is nothing but a mad joke + oh sh*t I’m f*cked expression.
As if on cue, Madam Tambourine pointed at me next. The class fell silent and I rose from my seat very slowly; my mind empty, my tongue turned to paper. I looked straight ahead and said nothing, counted from 1 and got to 13 before she told me to sit down and continued with her game like I didn’t just happen.
I knew what would happen next, how she would go tell my dad about how I was too shy and needed to open up more and how my dad would come back home and tell me in her exact words before laughing it off and telling me not to “mind her.”
I sat down quietly, I didn’t have any friend in class so I didn’t care what anyone thought. Maybe if I was lighter, my cheeks would have burned bright from embarrassment but thanks be to Jah for melanin.
Later on, I realized that nobody had recited John 3:16.
Oh well. Too late.
That was one of my first experiences with stage fright. I’m over 10 years older than I was then and I am here to tell you that it’s a lie what they told you – it doesn’t get better.
My fingers still shake like I have Parkinson’s, my tongue still turns to paper, my lips become zipped and it’s a struggle to open them up.
One very surprising aspect that still baffles me till today is how stable my voice is despite the surrounding turbulence.
I guess it’s only right I’m rewarded with a little good in exchange for all the bad I’ve had to contain.
Or maybe they didn’t lie. Maybe it’s just because I always run away from any public speaking situation so I haven’t had a lot of practice. Well, I don’t want practice so duh💁♀️
Anddddddd… we’re at the point where I tell you the point of all this ranting, yes? Haha.
There’s none. Nada. Zilch.
But we both know you enjoyed this. And we both know that you’ll be back for more. It’s a WIN-WIN if you ask me. You should be happy.
If I ever meet Madam Tambourine again, I would ask her why she didn’t just ask God for what He wanted to say, instead of asking hungry 10 year olds with stage fright who didn’t even want to be there.
I mean, does God use unwilling vessels? Oh yes, He does, look at Jonah. But that is talk for another day.
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See you next time. Until then, don’t be good. ❤