Why I think blindness is not remedial like other disabilities…Chronicles of a blind Nigerian (12)

By Ademola Adeleke

In this episode, I will be removing the deceiving veil used by some men of God in covering your face. Meanwhile, you need to understand that not all disabilities are remedial. Especially blindness and polio, once they fall on you, then get ready to be regarded as a disabled fellow throughout your stay on earth.

I know most of you who have attended a few crusades, revivals and prayer meetings in church will disagree with me. You have been uncompromisingly made to believe that miracle is like a sachet water, it can be found anywhere. Of course, you must have witnessed a crippled man jump up at the middle of a thunderous prayer, screaming excitingly on how strength has returned to his feeble legs; or maybe for you, what sowed your faith at a particular church is how a blind man ran from the back of the crowd down to the altar claiming that his sight has been restored.

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Then the pastor will be like ‘praise the lord!’ and the congregation will respond on the apex of their voice ‘hallelujah!’. And since everyone wants miracle, exactly like the blind man had got his, members of the congregation will remain loyal to the power of the church, hoping for their turn next Sunday. Little did they know that the blind man was hired, he was invited from a distant town and paid to pretend as being blind in order to convince the church of the presence of miracle in the pastor’s prayer.

Ah, all these fake pastors will give account on the judgement day, doesn’t the bible remind them? I’m not out to defame any pastor with this post but if it seems like a calumny to you, just bring any well-known disabled folks of yours to this church I’m going to mention for healing.

‘The Synagogue Church of all nations’; rings a bell? Yeah, that gigantic church in Lagos owned by prophet T.B. Joshua. If the person gets healed after some jumping and praying by Joshua, then I owe you my home address so I can be arrested for character assassination.

I’ve got a few blind friends in my life and for we the blind folks, our friendship wouldn’t become intimate without having asked questions on how we individually lost our sight and the measures that have been taken so far to restore it. And this is what two of my blind friends have got to say when asked whether they have tried visiting the Synagogue church in Lagos for their healing.

Be aware that there are two different accounts here, but the two are similar, so I’m merging both into a single story.

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‘Mtcheeew! Which Synagogue church? Everything is a lie guy. I stay in Abuja but because I wanted to see by all means and the Synagogue church had so much been talked about as being a place of miracle and wonders, I urged my elder brother who also wanted for me to see again to assist me to Lagos which he meekly complied. I am a very good Christian, so it’s not like I went without taking my faith along.

When we finally got to the building of the church, we were ushered into a big room where we stayed throughout that Friday, Saturday, then before grabbing the chance to join the service on Sunday morning. The service was awesome, different people with distinct status crowded the hall to the exit, I knew my healing was near since I had earlier been told that I wouldn’t return to Abuja with my blindness. We sang, prayed and worship for hours before the service was finally brought to a halt. Then an announcement was made afterwards; it was time for the healing session. On hearing this, people flocked to a certain direction as though they were acquainted with the environment already and in order not to carry last, my brother and I quickly followed the trend by going their way. We got to the entrance of a smaller hall and a man waiting at the door asked all the helpers of the challenged persons to leave. So, my brother had to leave and I was all by myself.

We entered the hall and formed like three queues, then T.B. Joshua himself came and started attending to us. I was the third on the first queue. The two people in front of me had been taking to the healer and honestly, there were noise and screams, shouts and hullabaloos, praising Joshua and his god for healing the cripple who I was initially standing behind.

Just as it was about to reach my turn, a man approached me and asked; are you in? The question was not really clear to me and judging from my sluggish reaction, the man could tell that I was finding his question strange. He gripped me by the hand and led me to another queue at the back, telling me that I was not meant to be on that former queue. I then noticed that a special set of people were healed on that day, none of us who had been in the same room since Friday got healed.

Hmm. Isn’t something fishy? Now, it’s the turn of the fake Alfas in Islam. This one happened to me directly, so I can tell the story better. I was staying with a teacher when I was in SS1 and I got tired of staying with him. My freedom was limited and I wanted to go back to my parents. Luckily, one weekend like that, my teacher gave me the chance to go home but return to his place on Monday. I didn’t want to return so I spent the entire weekend marking out plans on how to gain my freedom again.

On Monday morning, I was meant to go to school then from school, return to the teacher’s house; but I did something. I stood from my bed and took a mouthful of water in my mouth, then lied recklessly on the floor and leaked the water slowly out from one corner of my mouth. My younger sister whom my mum had sent to wake me up so I could prepare for school on time saw me lying on the floor and got scared, she ran to my mum and gave her the news.

There was pandemonium in the house that morning and everyone rushed to my room to revive me from dying. My acting was finger-licking perfect that morning. Making my mum cry upon a mere pretense deposited some guilt in my mind and so I came back to life after making sure I had convinced everyone that I had fainted. My plan later yielded my intention because my mum wanted me to be around her so she could keep an eyes on me. So, I stopped staying with the teacher.

The following weekend, my dad arrived from his journey and heard the story of my faint. Being a Muslim, he drove me in his car to an Alfa [a man of God in Islam] and narrated the whole story to him. I was damn scared, thinking he was going to see that all I did was just a pretense but no, all of those people are liars. The Alfa took my right palm and recited some Arabic words, then did some nonsense which I didn’t understand before finally breaking the silence.

“Oh, he was shot an arrow in his sleep. Assuming you brought him immediately, I would have seen the face of the person that shot him”. I smiled in my mind, this man is a creative fool I swear.

Mind you, I’m not insinuating that there are no good men of God or that miracle doesn’t exist, but they are really hard to come by these days. The last blind man that got healed and which I’m familiar with is the one Jesus healed at Bethsaida. Even though it’s also a bible account, I wouldn’t want to doubt it anyway.

So, guys, if blindness is really remedial, then you wouldn’t have seen quite a number of blind persons on the street and in school. There wouldn’t have been anyone to be called ‘a blind person’.

Nollywood must have made you think blindness is some condition that can be treated through surgical operations; since you hardly see the protagonists go blind without seeing towards the end of the movie. Well, some eye conditions like cataract can be treated through surgery, but not the dangerous ‘glaucoma’ who is the cause of a considerable percentage of the blindness we have in the country today. Once you have glaucoma, then you have to be very careful with its management or you end up losing your sight.

I don’t want more blind persons than we already have please, so friends, kindly go for eye screening once in a while.

I’ve got to go now, will see you later in the 13th episode of the series.

Peace out!

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