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It takes ah village to raise ah child

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Ole people say dat adults should contain dey exuberance if dey want to avoid de chance of minor injuries. So ah leaving all de celebration, de excitement and happiness foh de young and more energetic, Chelsea and her batch-mates who successfully completed dey Bar exams. It’s time foh them to celebrate. After all, dey have been fighting-up wid dis Law degree course for de last five years, three in Bo-bathe-us and two by Sir Hugh Wood-in Trin-dad.

But foh those of us whose children didn’t get ah scholarship, we all have our story to share. It was five expensive academic years: tuition and guild fees, rent, three square meals every day, transportation, pocket change, taxi to and from airport and miscellaneous expenses. But all de time God has been Good!

We had everything covered, at least so we thought. Alas! at de end of Chelsea’s first year, my wife lost her well paid job as ah Principal. Suffice it to say, her application for re-entry into the teaching services has not been approved. Dat simply threw ‘Plan A’ and ‘Plan B’ out de window one time. We found ‘Plan C’ as in Christ in First Kings Chapter 17. Dat is way all Believers must find refuge and strength. De chapter speaks of ah famine when God directed His Prophet Elijah to ah ravine east of de river, near Jordan. Dey was water from de brook and de Ravens brought bread and meat twice ah day to feed Elijah. Lie-Za say dat was de first ever NEMO, ah one-man centre. Things went fine foh ah while until de ravine went dry, but God did not fail His servant Elijah. He sent him to ah far away village to meet ah widow whom God Himself had instructed to host him. No doubt, dis man of God might ah bin looking foh ah guest house, but he was in foh ah shock.

Immediately on arrival he sensed dat his host was ah hand-to-mouth lady struggling wid ah young son; however, he decided to give her de “Litmus test,” to check out her attitude. He asked her foh de basic, ah drink ah water, and den requested ah piece ah bread. It was dey and den she laid out her impoverished state and swore to him: “All I have in my cupboard is ah handful ah flour, and ah lickle-drop ah oil. When dis lickle drop ah thing done cook, me and me son will eat and wait till death come.” Elijah gave her some comforting words, even though he sounded ah bit bossy.

“Fear not,” he said “go and do as you said, but make me ah little cake first, and bring it to me, and after make for you and yuh son. Now put yuh trust in de Lord God of Israel, and you will have ‘flour and oil’ until the day that the LORD send rain upon the earth.” De story tells dat de widow obeyed Elijah’s instructions and the lickle household of three, did eat many days. De message foh us in dat story was she believed and followed Elijah’s command. She gave to the Lord’s servant Elijah, de cake – the first fruit of all she produced and den just as Elijah had predicted, her flour bowl and oil bottle was filled with plenty and never ran out!

Thank God dat proverbial flour and oil story is what kept Chelsea in University foh five years. Dis is ah time of thanksgiving. Thank yuh Jesus! And while no individual names will be men-shunned, there are some One-dah-full and faith-full friends who assisted in various ways. If only to remind us dat it takes ah Village to raise ah child! And wid dat is gone ah gone again.

One Love Bassy

Bassy Alexander is a land surveyor, folklorist and social commentator.

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