People get saved because the preacher read them the riot act. Other’s come to the Lord because they are making a negotiation – give me this, I will give you my life – which is truly foolish because even that life isn’t yours. I got saved at the height of my best life. I was balling and living life on the fast lane even before many people knew life had lanes. At 21, I was done with college, working, driving, travelling the world, and buying dresses worth thirty gees. Ngiri thaate! Mbeca fari fari. Then One day I thought, ‘if my life is this good without Jesus in it, life with Jesus will be Pro Max!” So I got saved.

My bro invited me to his church. He insisted that there was a young pastor who was fiery and fun. I went for this pastor’s evening services for one year, and never saw him. He was always out on a mission. Then one day I met him. He was bubbly and fun. I learned that he was born with sickle cell anemia, he wasn’t supposed to live beyond 20 years, but here he was, a walking miracle. We stood on the road for five hours, talking. He was the purest soul I had ever talked to. He didn’t seem to have an agenda, it was just pure friendship.

Our friendship grew like a fungus in humidity. We were having the best of times in ministry. We shared almost everything, but we hadn’t made it clear if we were dating. One day, I gave him an ultimatum – make up his mind and say the word, or we couldn’t be friends anymore. It didn’t take him much time, there was no way he was letting all this beauty and brains go. Dating a pastor should be listed among the 1000 ways to die. Church girls called me all manner of names – I was called the queen of the sea, I was luring the man of God away. Of all the men I could marry, did I have to choose the ONE they were eyeing?

It was announced on a crusade before my wedding day that I was going to split the earth and swallow everyone who came. So, people came in their hundreds to witness the devil’s messenger do her thing. Well, I’m sorry I disappointed them.

My marriage was blissful. I never once shouted at my husband or slept angry. I love peace, I’d rather wake him up in the night than sleep grumpy. He supported me and protected me fiercely. I was untouchable and could stand all the negativity because he was my safe place. We got three beautiful babies – two boys and a little princess. We also lost two babies. We weathered these storms together.

He was still very missional and always went preaching. He took a mission to the USA in 2013, preaching from state to state and having a wonderful time in the Lord. We saw many miracles in our marriage, and especially in him as a sickler.

Perhaps due to weather conditions, he got a sickle cell crisis. He had an attack while preaching and was rushed to the hospital. I was informed of this development and kept it to myself for two days as he received treatment. I wanted so badly to be by his side, I applied for a Visa and was granted it. I drove to the Embassy to collect my passport. On my way there, the hospital in the USA called. I knew I needed to pull over for this call. I pulled over and walked out of the car.

I know we’re taught from childhood to say sorry as an etiquette, but you don’t want to hear “sorry” from the doctor who’s treating your person.

Doctor: I’m so sorry, Judy. He’s gone to be with the Lord.

Me: What time?doctor: 3 AM this morning.

My friend who was accompanying me to the embassy started screaming in the car. As if on cue, sister Ada Adoyo called. “How’s he, Judy?”

“He’s gone, Ada.”

Ada Adoyo started screaming.

I had just one thought in my mind — I need to get home to my babies. I didn’t cry. I can’t cry – I actually have a condition that keeps tears from forming. My life was unraveling and I couldn’t cry. It was the worst day of my life. Yet. I didn’t know it then, but this was the beginning of a thousand unimaginable nightmares. My Brez was thousands of miles away, now he was not even on this earth. He was gone. I was a widow. I have been for 8 years.