Q & A


ISSUES OF THE HEART By Julie Akhimien

Q. I cannot deny that he loves me. Every little thing he does shows and proves this fact. I was brought up in a home that encourages you to look after your husband to be in terms of food- i.e. cooking for him. But my fiancé would never let me do that for him, whether in his house or in mine. He has never touched me, and he says that there are boundaries we must not cross. Please is there something I am missing? Is it wrong for me to desire to cook for him or do you think he is up to something?


A. May be I should start by saying I do not think your fiancé is up to something, and you are not missing anything and your desire to cook for him is not wrong. It would be right to say he is just being careful, I mean as per boundaries, something I sincerely think you should be grateful to God for. He seems to be one of those guys who truly have the fear of God in his heart and it shows how much respect he has for you, he is laying a good foundation for your future home, a trust level that none of you should betray. Concerning his disallowing you to cook for him, that might just be a personal decision, it’s hard to say why, I think you should ask him, but it’s not something you should worry about, after all it is only a matter of time and you would have all the opportunity in the world to put your cooking expertise into action, so relax ooo, and be glad for the gift you’ve got in him.




Q. We have never imagined that we could go through this much challenge before our parents approve our marriage. In fact, it does not look like they will ever approve our getting married. But we are still together. Now so many counsels have come our way since this problem began. Some say to go ahead and get married without their consent, they will come around much later; others say to get her pregnant and you will see everyone on your side, then you will do everything on your own terms and not on theirs This might look small but it has become a big challenge for us. Which counsel should we take? Please do you have a third option for us?

A. I can imagine how challenging this whole thing has been for both of you, nevertheless you must continue to hold on and trust God to perfect that which concerns you especially if you are persuaded He, God has brought you together. From the tone of your question, I don’t seem to doubt that fact, I mean that God has a hand in your relationship. Both counsels are not considerable ones I must say. Going ahead without your parents’ consent is about the very very very last thing you must do. If the heart of every man is on God’s palm and He turns it wherever He wills, your parents’ are no exceptions, you can trust God to touch them and He sure will. There are a thousand and one testimonies of how God has given breakthroughs to other brethren and your case won’t be different. Getting her pregnant is certainly man’s way out, not what God would want you to do if you want Him, God to fight for you. My candid option which you consider the third one would be to ask God for help, let His mercy abound towards you and give you favour before your parents, when He does, they will be the ones calling you to come and get married. He had done it before and like that old woman said ‘He will did it again’,It pays to trust Him, I do speak from my heart. How I look forward to adding your testimony to ours, God is able.




Q. I will go straight to the point. My sister is living with her fiancé. I think it is wrong for unmarried couples to live together, but she does not see anything wrong with it. We have gone back and forth with it to no avail. I know it is wrong but I don’t have the facts. Or am I the wrong one?

A. You are right and your sister is wrong. Co-habitation is a sin no matter what colour you paint it with, red, blue, green, yellow or white, even in rainbow colours, it is dead wrong for anyone who is a child of God. An unbeliever may not have an understanding of this but for those who are saved by grace; it is not an issue of debate. Now, there are many reasons why it is not right to live with a man or woman you are not married to though time and space would not permit me to outline an exhaustive list but suffice to say, it is against God’s will. Hebrews 13:4 If you love one another and desire so much to live together, then get committed to one another, gets married. Marriage says more to the world about your love and commitment to one another than words could ever say. Tell your sister, she is worth more than she is portraying herself to be now; it is never too late to do what is right.

Q. I am in the most stupid quagmire of my life. My fiancé’s parents say they love me and they are in support of our marriage. But as they put it, I must get pregnant before they can give us their blessings. They do not want what happened to his elder brother happen to him. So I must prove that I am fertile before we can tie the knot. Do not ask me to go to my parents because I know what their answer would be. My fiancé and I are not getting any younger, and it looks like I might be standing alone in this battle soon. Now I know sex before marriage is wrong and that leaves me with the option of breaking up the relationship, I am willing to- do you think I am going too far?


A. What a conditional love, really really conditional indeed. Well, that to me is a very shallow way of reasoning, wanting you to be pregnant as a sign that you are fertile, before you tie the knot with their son. To a large extent however, they are like having been once beaten, getting a ‘thousand times’ shy. As believers, that should not be our approach, rather, it should be that their blessings should follow you so you would be fruitful. No one can tell what the future holds except He who holds the future and that is God. Whether a thousand or more people are doing it, doesn’t mean it is right. People only think of what they imagine is the ‘simple’ way out. I tell you what, it is not just enough to be pregnant, it takes God to deliver safely and if you so want God on your side, you must do things His way and getting pregnant before marriage is not one of them. I do appreciate your stand, it does show that you fear God and willing to make Him proud, I dare say then that He will not let you down, no matter what it takes. This may be hard but if your fiancé’s stand is to take sides with his parents, your option may be inevitable. Romans 6:13-16, the one you yield yourself to, becomes your master, I am glad you are yielded to God and like I said, the battle is His. I am glad to let you know that He is a winner anytime. Keep your eyes on Him and He will not disappoint you. So, you are not going too far by choosing to be on God’s side, you are rather on the winning side. We live by faith and not by sight.



Q. He slapped me! We got into an argument about his pastor and he slapped me. He could not stand the truth about the wrong atmosphere that he has found his spirit in. When he came to apologize, he said that his action was the only way he could get me to keep quiet on the issue. He promised it would never happen again. Look, I love him, but this promise was the same nonsense my friend’s husband gave but today she cannot hear with her left ear. I am willing to break this relationship because I do not want to be anyone’s punching bag. My best friend thinks I am being too rash, and that he may have truly changed. How do I know he has? Am I really too rash if I break up with him? I trust you will give me the right counsel.


A. My dear, if you love this man, I think you should give him a second chance. What has happened is an eye opener for you to know just one of his weak points. {Sure there are many others, everyone has them, I mean weak points}. It might also be an opportunity for you to find out more about his temper and see what you can do to help him. He might not be a ‘puncher’ like your best friend’s husband, it would be wrong for you to judge him as that but look carefully before you leap and don’t be too eager to break the relationship because of one single incidence. Be careful also how you relate your convictions, didn’t the Bible say a soft answer turns away wrath? Do it the Bible way and avoid unnecessary aches, speak the truth in love and save your merchandise, consider it as good, then trust God to help you to be wise.


Q . My wife and I have 2 daughters and a son. Or should I say, we had a son. He died in a plane crash sometime ago. When my wife was to have our second daughter and last child, she had some complications that resulted in the removal of her womb. I have no son to succeed me anymore. My people are not taking it well. I am a prince. Now I am under the intense pressure of having to take another wife. My wife, who hails from the same village as I understands the situation and thinks I should go ahead and get another wife. I have told her we can have another child, but each time I do, she says that I am mocking her. Doesn’t faith work anymore?


A. Do accept my sympathy on the demise of your son; it is a painful thing to go through. I pray God grants you fortitude to bear the loss and smile on you in the way He deems best to. In situations like this, one really finds it difficult getting the right words of comfort but the God of all comfort, He alone can and will of a surety comfort you in Jesus Name, Amen. You see my brother, men don’t reason like God, that’s why God said His ways are not our ways. You can imagine, as far as the heavens are far above the earth so are His ways from ours. Isaiah 55:8-11. Getting another wife is not the solution. Besides, you are not living for people are you? Your life is for God not man. Your wife sounds like Sarah to me, I mean Sarah Abraham. You know as much as I do, how the story ended, in fact we are still reaping the consequences of that singular act till today, talk about the war in the middle east. So, what are we saying, keep your eyes on God, He knows the end from the beginning, He is the one writing the script of your lives and guess what? Every story God writes, ends well. I dare say then, that the story of your life will end well, amen. If you hearken to the counsel to get another wife, what is the guarantee that she would bear you a son? I agree with you that God can bless you and your wife with a son even without a womb; He has done it before and can do it again. The Bible says, even when we do not believe, God is faithful and He cannot deny Himself. 2Tim. 2:13If He proposes to do a thing, nothing stops Him because as far as He is concerned, saying is the same as doing. So, relax in Him, enjoy your God given family, be happy with your lovely daughters and watch God turn your sorrows into joy. Give your wife my love and tell her it is not over until God says it is over and God is on your side.




Q. I am getting married to my fiancée in November 2006. Lately, I have noticed that her folks engage me in discussions that suggest the possibility of her siblings coming to live with us after our marriage. This issue makes me feel very uncomfortable. My fiancée does not think it is a good idea, but I am careful not to offend my in-laws. What should I do?



A. You should relax. The first thing to do is to reach an agreement with your fiancée on what you want to do, then let her tell her people what your plans are. In that way, she will shield you from their ‘wrath’, if there is any need for it. My candid advice would be to give yourselves at least one year before considering having someone live with you. By then, you would have come to know yourselves better and laid a solid foundation. By now however, you should begin to incorporate your wife’s siblings into your plans even if it means just being a bit of a blessing to them. The thought of helping them should not make you uncomfortable because they are already a part of you whether you like it or not. Another thing you must know is that, they will not always be a liability, with time, they grow to be assets too, and it’s not all bad news. God will give you the grace.




Q. I am in a relationship with a divorcee. We love each other very much and he has asked me to marry him. I want to marry him, but my pastor does not think it is a good idea. Beyond that, my pastor has threatened to excommunicate me if I go ahead with the marriage. But I am sure that he is the man for me. My mum dreamt of him a year before I ever met him but my pastor and my elder sister think I am just fooling myself. This controversy is eating me up. What do I do?





A. You should go and pray oooooooo. The word divorcee is a taboo in Christendom. No one wants to hear what led to the divorce, it’s like a stigma, and a scar no one has an answer to. The big question is, ‘what is God saying to you?’ Whatever decision you make, have consequences attached and you must be prepared to face those consequences. It would have been helpful if one knows the basis for his divorce, say perhaps his former wife walked out on him or ran away with another man or things like that but since there are no details other than the fact that the man is a divorcee and your pastor is not accepting him, I advice you to tread gently and be very careful not to go against God’s will, pray, pray, pray and pray. If you know that he was the one who divorced his wife, I would not advice you to marry him because you will certainly be the next in line for a divorce. Be sure to do what you know God would be proud of you for, no one should make you go to hell, the decision is yours, be sure you do it right. I think it might be safer for you to give it some time before you agree to take him back. I like your kind of heart, it’s a good one but no one ought to take you for granted because you are simple at heart, so let time decide the level of his love for you now and don’t forget to pray about it too. Good enough, time does have this wonderful way of proving issues, time will tell I can assure you. Then you can be sure whether or not this guy is really worthy of your love which I am quite sure you are willing to lavish on him. So, wait a bit and see if he persists on wanting to come back and if he is genuine this time around. Make sure it is not because you are now well to do or have got a good job; I pray God helps you to discern his purpose because He, God, is the one who truly knows the intents of the heart.




Q. I am a 28 year old lady who has been engaged for two years to a man I love, but each time I ask to commence with our wedding plans, he comes up with excuses saying he needs more time. Though he says he loves me, he has not proved it in terms of commitment. I don’t know how much longer I can wait.


A. What gives me concern about your case my dear, is the issue of commitment. When someone whom you claim to be in love with and who says he loves you too finds it difficult to be committed to you, then there is more to it than meets the eye. Having to wait until he is ready would not have been a problem if you were sure that he is committed to you. So, the place to start from is to be sure of this and then decide whether or not you want to wait or move on with your life. If you both are committed to God, it should be evident in your commitment to one another. I wish you the best.



Q. I have been married for 15 years with three children. Sometime ago as I was cleaning our room I came across some documents of our landed properties. What shocked me was that the documents had only my husband’s name and the next of kin was his brother. Different thoughts have been going through my mind as regards the future of our children. Please advice me on how to handle the situation.


A. I must confess it is a sad discovery but thank God you found it. I would advice you to prayerfully approach your husband on the issue when you know he is in the best mood; not with a quarrelsome attitude but a cool, calm and collected one. You might even start by asking him who his next of kin is. If his answer is not you, then you know it’s a good sign to proceed. If not, ask him why not, and then proceed to explain why you think it is important that you be his next of kin. I advise that you talk to him because it would be too dangerous for you to allow all sorts of things to be running through your mind. The devil is a very tricky fellow and might just be looking for a way to cause havoc in your home, so you must be sensitive to the issue and wise in handling it. I pray that God’s wisdom will be available to you to face this challenge and that you would be able to sort it out amicably such that your husband would see the need to put you as his next of kin for that is the way it should be. God bless you real good.




Q. I believe in miracles. I believe that God can turn things around and it does not take Him much to do that. I am supposed to be getting married in 3months time. However we went for HIV test and my fiancé tested positive. We been counselled by our pastor and the church marriage committee to break the engagement but I love him enough to marry him still despite the new development. Everyone thinks I am crazy, but I believe God can heal him. Don’t I have a point?


A. Of course you do have a point, is just that you need to wait to see your faith work out the way you actually want, that is waiting to see God heal him before you marry him. There is no point getting married and getting infected and having innocent children dying young for no fault of theirs, its just not fair and ungodly putting your entire household and family into a nightmare just because someone wanted things their own way. Everybody can’t be wrong, so you need God to come through for you and heal your fiancée before you marry him. It is only then you can truly say, He, God answered your prayers and did what only He could have done. God is not an author of confusion; please don’t portray Him as one.



Q. I am in relationship with a guy and we intend getting married but his sister is against it because she feels I am better off than him financially and believes I will control him. Because of that she has succeeded in convincing other members of the family to stand against the marriage. What do I do?



A. First, you need to pray for God’s intervention. If I may ask, what is the stand of your fiancé? You can only put to flight a thousand but two of you will put ten thousand to flight. If you are both willing to let God’s plan for your life come to pass, there is no telling what God can do for you when you agree together in prayer, believe me. I don’t know what your fiancée’s sister saw in you to have concluded the way she did but I hope your disposition to your well- to- do position did not give you away. Because if your disposition suggests that of a domineering woman, one might want to give reasons for her beliefs but if you humble yourself and your desire is to see God’s counsel come to pass in your lives, God will fight for you and you would hold your peace. His plans for you will come to pass. So, trust Him to bring it to pass.


Q. I was in a relationship with a guy who left me for another lady from an influential family. But they broke up and now he wants to come back to me. I have a good job and now by God’s grace things are going well for me. I still love him. What do you advice?


A. You sort of disarmed me by your love affirmation for him. You still love him; are you sure? The reason I’m asking is because his leaving you initially suggests a lack of commitment to you and it’s difficult to tell whether or not he is willing to be committed to you now up to the point of marrying you. What if another influential lady comes along before you marry him, are we sure he will not go after that one again?




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