Another excerpt from my coming book, TRUNAIJA
Who is Jesus?
I was at home in the living room reading, one Friday evening, and my third son Chika was lying on the floor. He was about five years old then. Suddenly he turned from the book he was reading and asked me a question that surprised me.
“Daddy, who is Jesus?
I lifted my eyes from the book in my hands and looked at him. He was gazing at me with such intensity that made me uncomfortable. When he saw my hesitation, he repeated the question.
“Daddy, who is Jesus?”
Of course I know who Jesus is, but my challenge at that moment was how to communicate the person and power of our Lord at the level a 5-year old can understand. I never expected that question and it unsettled me, at least for a few seconds. And it showed in the way I answered.
Well , em , em, Jesus is our Lord and Saviour. He is the Son of God. He was born by a woman just like all of us. God sent Him here to teach us how to love each other, to show us how God can bless us and how to stop doing bad-bad things and become good people. When you do a bad thing, it is called sin. God does not like sin. Jesus came to teach us how to stop doing sin. But some people killed him.
“Who killed him, Daddy?”
The people who like to do bad things, I told him
“That is wicked people, Daddy?”
Yes, I replied.
“Why did they kill him, Daddy?”
Because they are bad people. They are very wicked. Jesus told them to stop doing bad things and they did not like Jesus. So they killed him.
“So Jesus has died. Will God send another Jesus?”
No Jesus is alive. It is only one Jesus we have. God will not send another one.
“If Jesus has died, how can he be alive again?”
He died, and came alive again, I told him.
“Daddy, you told me that if somebody dies, you bury the person. How can Jesus die and be alive again?”
He died, but God raised Him from death after three days, I answered. I did not know how to explain this further, or if I was making a good job of it so far. I needed someone to help me but nobody was around. That was when I marveled at the skills of those who teach kindergartens. It is not an easy job.
For me, an advocate of who are you? I must not fail to explain, I thought, I decided I must not let this opportunity slip, without teaching this boy in the language he will understand, a basic understanding of God, His divine power and His relationship with Jesus. Though he was still very young, he needed to get the fundamentals of who is Jesus
“How can God raise Jesus when he died? Chika continued.
“Did God go where they buried Jesus to hold His hand and raise Him?” Now, I was sweating. Who will help me?
No, God did not go there, I explained. He sent an Angel to do it. You know Angels have great powers.
“Daddy, did he send Angel Gabriel, the one that went to Virgin Mary and told her she will have a baby she will call Jesus?” My boy asked in excitement. “That is what they taught us in catechism in the church.”
I don’t know the name of the Angel God sent to raise Jesus, I told him. All I know is that an Angel went there to do it. So, Jesus is alive today and He is blessing people.
“Daddy is Jesus blessing us?”
Yes, He is blessing us. If you pray to God in Jesus name, He will answer you and bless you, I explained, hoping the conversation will end here. No way as the boy persisted.
“Daddy, when people pray, I hear them say, in Jesus name! Blood of Jesus! Does Jesus have blood? Is the colour of his blood red, just like our own?
Yeah, Jesus has blood but, em.. em, I don’t know the colour, may be it is red, I answered awkwardly. The blood of Jesus is very powerful. Any time you say it, the devil will run away.
“Is that so Daddy? That is why I hear, Blood of Jesus every time.”
Yes, that is why.
Daddy, the devil is wicked, abi? He is the one doing all the bad-bad things.
Yes, the devil is very wicked. He is a very bad person. We don’t follow devil here; it is Jesus we follow.
“Daddy, Jesus and devil who is more powerful?” My boy asked again.
Jesus is super power I told him, flexing my right arm to demonstrate muscles and power. My boy did same. I nodded in approval. He was getting the message. I continued. Devil is powerless power. I saw him nod his head in understanding beaming with smiles. I was happy. At least I was communicating. But the boy was not done yet.
“Where is Jesus now,” he asked as he stood up. It was a sign the conversation would soon end I thought with great relief.
Jesus is in heaven with God, I answered.
“Will Jesus come again, Daddy? I want to meet Him and take Him to my school.”
Yes, He will come again but I don’t know when, I answered as he ran outside to play with his mates.
When Chika left, I heaved a sigh of great relief. Children of nowadays, what a dialogue? I thought. I doubt if I did such when I was his age. As I answered his questions, he pestered me with more. The boy wanted to know the, who’s, why’s and where’s. That is a T-Minor in action for you, bold and inquisitive.
(11 July 2012)
Eric Okeke is a storyteller, editor, business writer, motivational speaker and author of the best selling book: I Want a Husband. He is one of Nigeria’s most experienced financial journalists. He has published several articles in local and foreign publications and in websites such as http://www.ezinearticles.com, www.ezinearticles.com and www.writingcareer.com. He is currently running Infomedia Company, a media consulting and information marketing company. Visit his blog at http://sallywantsahusband.blogspot.com