‘It’s a goal!’ the sound of jubilation woke me from my sleep. The thudding and clapping from the sitting room were enough to send a hypertensive patient fast to his early grave.
‘That was a fine shot from Mikel Obi,’ Akobi’s voice drowned every other voice.
Although, I was not a football enthusiastic but a magnetic force pulled me like a robot into my large sitting room where all my sons and their friends converged in front of our 170-inch plasma TV.
‘Daddy, you don’t know what you’re missing,’ Akobi fired at me the moment I walked in.
‘Sir, today’s match is unbelievable!’ Emeka chipped in, ‘our boys just scored a goal one minute to the final whistle.’
I beamed with satisfaction at their excitement, but my roaming eyes scanned around the room and spotted a vacuum.
‘Where is Ayomide?’
‘As usual Dad,’ Akobi answered casually, ‘you should know better than now that Ayo rarely stays at home.’
‘Shut up!’ I switched off the TV in anger.
An unusual silence hung in the air as numerous pairs of eyes shot at me like bullets.
‘Bur Dad,’ Musa broke the ice, ‘of what benefit is a missing 1% in comparison to the rest 99% of us that are here.’
‘A huge difference!’ I muttered in deep anguish, ‘and for your information, this house would know no rest until Ayomide is found!
A week later, I was informed to check him in the worst prison in the country.
As I approached the hallway of the prison, the stench from the sewage migrated into my nostrils and I almost fainted. As if that was not enough, an agonizing song at the other end of the reformatory institution brought me close to tears.
‘Oh, my home! (2x)
When shall I see my home?
When shall I see my native land?
I would never forget my home…
Moved with pity, I stared at their faces and cringed the moment I spotted my Ayomide in the midst of the miserable choristers; he was all skin and bones!
I paid for his release and afterward
threw a big party to celebrate his homecoming.
Despite my profound affection for that young man, his stubbornness persisted.
Sadly, it’s over a year now since he left the house; I’m still waiting for his return…
No one else could feel my agony better than I do.
The search is now intense. I have declared no rest for every member of my household – Akobi, Emeka, Musa, Akpan, Jide, Chike all hands must be on deck.
My dear friends, just like the heartbroken father in that story, God the father is still waiting for the return of that prodigal son (sinner). It doesn’t matter the number of souls already in His kingdom, there is still a huge vacuum waiting to be occupied.
Your input as a kingdom child is urgently required to help a lost soul retrace his steps back home today. Put a smile on the face of the almighty father by responding to this noble call to help fill the blank space in heaven.
The bible was right when it declared in Luke 15:7 that:
‘I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.’