The mysterious rain on Christmas Day
At exactly 11:30 pm, on Christmas Eve the whole neighbourhood of the popular Oketubo Street, in Lagos Mainland woke up to the booming of guns by some daredevil robbers. They were gripped with fear on hearing the nerve-racking sound of the sophisticated weapon of the armed bandits. It was like Armageddon had finally come! Truly, the hearts of residents of that peaceful area beat a million times and shook giddily when the kingpin of the robbers held a megaphone and approached a block of flat shouting in a guttural voice, “Everybody should bring out their gold, cash, mobile phones and other valuables right now, then lie facing the ground! I’m Jomboh Iscariot, the merciless robber that kills with joy! Don’t mess with us! The sight of blood makes me happy!”
In a jiffy, the robbers had gained entrance into the flat of Supo Odunayo, a Maritime Manager with Ocean Gems Shipping Company based in Apapa. Supo was very rich from all indication but he got his wealth through hard work and God’s blessings. He was a very kind and humble person. He was generous to a fault. The robbers were about 12 in number and were fully armed with deadly weapons. Supo and his heavily pregnant wife, Romoke, were visibly shaken, trembling and sweating like lily-livered kids who saw a ghost in the dark. The thoughts on the minds of the couple were absolute doom and gloom. No one had ever escaped from the bloodshed of Jomboh Iscariot and his gang of robbers. People living in the other flats too were afraid because they knew their flats would be next to be raided by the robbers who shot sporadically to scare their victims.
“Where are the gold, cash and mobile phones I mentioned just now?” Iscariot threatened, hitting Supo on the head with the butt of his AK-47 assault rifle. There was blood instantly on the forehead of the plump-looking, handsome man. He was filled with biting pain from the wound.
“Please, spare our lives I beg you in God’s name…” Supo pleaded, “these are the things you want…please don’t kill us…”
He handed them cash, jewelry and expensive mobile phones worth several thousands of naira.
“God! God! You just mentioned God! Who told you I know God? To hell with your God! Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!” Iscariot burst into hysterical and cynical laughter, “I’ll waste you and your wife right now! I’m always happy at the sight of blood and when people die!”
At the mention of killing him and his wife Supo burst into tears and wept sorrowfully. He could remember how they had endured the pain and shame of being a childless couple for 12 years before God answered their prayers and his lovely wife became pregnant that very year.
“Please, kill me and spare the life of my wife,” he begged in tears, “I’ll gladly die, but don’t kill my wife please…” Supo closed his eyes and sobbed like a baby.
“You want to tell me what to do?” Iscariot hollered, “Now both of you will meet your Maker!”
Jomboh Iscariot was about pulling the trigger and silencing the couple when he heard the siren of a police team.
“Boss, we are surrounded,” a member of the gang said, “let’s go and deal with the police outside and come back to finish our work here,”
“That’s okay Jagamo, let’s waste those police first!” Iscariot growled, thumping his chest in annoyance, “We’ll be back, we’re not through with you yet!”
As they went downstairs Supo and his wife, who had almost fainted, started praying fervently with tears cascading down their cheeks. They begged God for His intervention and help.
Within the next 20 minutes the notorious armed robbers engaged the police in a fierce gun battle. The police couldn’t match the superior firepower of the daredevil robbers and about eight policemen lay dead, while two of the robbers suffered injury. The police retreated and the two surviving officers went back to their base to bring reinforcement.
Jomboh Iscariot and his gang were happy and felt like heroes or warlords. Confidently, they went back to the flat of the Odunayos to take more loot and kill the couple. Supo and his pregnant wife were still crying helplessly and confused. No sooner had the robbers entered the flat again than a heavy rain began. It was unusual for rain to fall at that time of the year. Despite the strange torrential downpour, the robbers didn’t mind but ordered them to lie down on the floor while they cart away goods worth several millions of naira.
The heavy rain continued ceaselessly. The robbers were more than happy. They raided the tastefully furnished flat of the Odunayos with glee. Supo and his wife were still down on the floor weeping sorrowfully.
Jomboh Iscariot moved towards the couple after they had finished the operation and hollered, “Now I have to give you couple a parting shot to say goodbye!” He raised his gun up and pointed it in the direction of the weeping couple.
“Please, I beg you in God’s name to spare our lives…” Supo pleaded in tears again, “Oh, please…oh please…”
At this moment, his wife looked frozen with morbid fear.
“Oh no…don’t kill us please…” the pregnant woman begged between sobs. But Jomboh Iscariot and his gang were in no mood to pity the couple. Jomboh was about pulling the trigger to silence the couple when a deafening thunder rattled and lightning struck him suddenly, the thunderbolt hit all of them at once. The thunder sounded, “BRATATAT-BAM-BAT-BOOM!” And for a couple of seconds it pierced through the already charged sky. It was a fearful and awesome sight! The lightning had a devastating effect and mission – it killed all the robbers without mercy. After the frightening peals of thunder, the rain then stopped slowly. People were surprised at the strange development.
Miraculously the couples were safe and not affected. They were shocked and surprised to see how the Almighty God had fought for them! When the couple regained consciousness they were so elated and happy. The first words that came from their mouth were, “Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!” They continued screaming, “Hallelujah, praise God!” The joy pervading the entire area was indescribable. The neighbours in the next flats came to celebrate with the Odunayos for their miraculous escape from the snares of death. About fifteen minutes later, the police arrived the scene to assess the situation. The dead robbers were all carried away to the morgue for autopsy.
That very Christmas Day was a special day for the Odunayos because at exactly 1:pm Romoke was delivered of a bouncing baby boy. The couple thanked Almighty God for sparing their lives from gruesome death by armed robbers and also for given them a handsome baby boy in the family. Supo was very, very happy at the outcome of events in his life! He would never forget that Christmas Day the good Lord saved him and his wife from the valley of the shadow of death and also gave him a son. It was a day of double joy, forever to be remembered!
On the eight day, the handsome baby boy was christened IyanuOluwa, meaning “The miracle of God!”
The Odunayos celebrated the naming ceremony with pomp and pageantry. There was so much to eat and drink for all the guests that came from far and near. It was double celebration! When it was around 28th of December the good Lord touched the life of Supo Odunayo again. He was promoted to the position of Executive Director of Ocean Gems Shipping Company. He had every reason to be Supo had this to say: “My heart is ever filled with joy for what God did to me! I’ll be grateful forever. This is beyond my understanding. It pays to be kind and do good in life so that one can get the blessings and mercy of God.”
Life is filled with trials, ups and downs but with absolute faith in God, we will overcome our tribulations. And He will put permanent smile on our faces, just like He did to the Odunayos.