Estimated reading time: 6 minutes, 6 seconds.
Emma’s Love Story- Part Two
The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC)-one year mandatory service to my fatherland-gave me a new beginning; that year, I planned to live with focus and drive. I put all my energy into becoming a better me and achieving my goals. No more man troubles in my life, please! NYSC posted me to a state I had never been in before; my primary assignment is teaching in a primary school. My service year was a humbling stage of my life.
My life became monotonous, from work to house to the church: no partying, no dates, no extra friends. I didn’t become a snob; I just didn’t put myself out there anymore. One day, I had an issue with my bank account; I used a wrong pin more than three times, and that froze my funds. I had to make multiple trips to the bank to sort this out. The bankers were not friendly; they treated me as a fraudster. After numerous trips, I met a banker named Gaddo. He understood my plight and helped me out. He helped quicken the process and even signed as a guarantor that I wasn’t a fraud. I was so grateful for his help, so I kept thanking him. He told me to buy him lunch if I was grateful.
I knew where this was leading already, and I wasn’t going to jump right into another relationship, my last relationship was just six months ago. I wasn’t ready for the emotional push and pull. I took Gaddo out for lunch, but I kept my distance. To my relieve, he didn’t make any move during that lunch. Maybe I read him wrong; perhaps I can finally have a regular male friend.
We became gist partners and lunch buddies; he made my life less lonely. He was a great friend; he was fun. Two months after, he then asked me out, it seemed right, and my weak heart was already in love again, so I said yes. Gaddo was a man, all the other guys I dated were boys. Surely he will be ready for marriage and not wish only to have a fling. I was sure I was at the end of my search. Gaddo was focused and driven; he knew what he wanted out of life. He was sweet and caring, but it was hard to see Gaddo. I realised that I wasn’t the centre of his world; he didn’t miss me as I missed him. He was okay with us seeing only once a week; He became overly busy with work. I was sure he was cheating, didn’t he have my time when he was asking me out? Suddenly his work has become demanding; it’s a lie. He was cheating. If he wasn’t seeing me, he was seeing some other girl. Barely four months into the relationship, we started fighting, he said I didn’t trust him. I mean, how could I trust him when I knew how men behave. I never caught him once with another woman, but if he didn’t have my time, he had someone else’s time. Shortly after, we broke up.
My mandatory year of service to my fatherland was coming to an end; my year of a fresh start was beginning to look bleak. Where were all the good men, was there none left? Other areas of my life were falling into place, but my love life was in shambles. I got a job offer from an insurance company. I accepted the job with the plan to settle down in that state. Gaddo was not the only man there. I was going to find a man willing to marry me and get my happy ending.
I made the first move this time around; I found a man with the right qualities and went for him.
Nathan and I attended the same church; he was in the choir while I was an usher. He was a sincere man, and he loved the Lord with all his heart and was purpose-driven. I tried having a conversation with him, and I found Nathan knew what God created him for, and he was going to live his life fulfilling his destiny. He always put God first in all he did; I was sure he would put me first, too. We seemed to have a natural chemistry, so all I needed was to position myself right. Finally, after one month, Nathan asked me out on a dinner date. I was too sure he was about making things official.
That date was one I will not forget in a hurry. We were at the restaurant for close to 4 hours. We had a great meal, and then we talked; the topics were around our families, our purpose and our love for God. I realised then that I had no exact plan for my life not to talk of purpose. My love for God seemed non-existent as I listened to him. At the moment, I realised I was living a pretty vain life.
Then Nathan said, “Emma, I have feelings for you, but I don’t want to mislead you. Feelings are never enough and insignificant in the face of purpose. If we date or end up married, we will both be miserable. I also think you need to learn how to love God. You are looking for a man who will live his life loving you, that man doesn’t exist. A man will always disappoint you, not because he is evil; but because he is not omniscient or omnipresent. He won’t always be there every second of your life. Sometimes circumstances outside his control will hinder him from doing what you desire. Even if you tell him your thoughts, he is not capable of coming to a full understanding of every emotion you feel. His interpretation of your feelings can differ from yours.
“Furthermore, there will be other external factors that will demand his attention and emotions. These external factors will affect his devotion to you. Emma, you have been searching for the perfect man for a very long time now, the man that will take away the pain your father caused you. You can find a man who can give you a great deal of emotional support, but after a couple of months or years, he will no longer be able to provide as much because you will want more as you try to make him that perfect replacement of your father.
“I am not trying to hurt you with my words, but I need you to see that you first need to reconnect with God. He is the only One capable of knowing your thoughts even before you understand them yourself. He is capable of always being present at any and every time of your life. He has a reason He created you; He has a purpose for you to fulfil. Make that the reason for your living. Then you can marry a man with whom you can fulfil your purpose. Feelings are only on an emotional level, and emotions are subject to events and circumstances. There is no emotional depth that is capable of sustaining a relationship for a lifetime; Emma, you need to dig deeper. Find God, then your man, who has also found God will find you.”
That day was when my life changed.