Read Episode 7 here
Ife sat at her desk, staring into space. Ever since Matthew opened up to her, she had not been herself. When Matthew told her at the start of their courtship that he had a tainted past before coming to the Lord, she never expected that it would involve death. She was all the more upset that he didn’t open up to her from the beginning. Their introduction was in four months’ time, and the wedding would follow almost immediately! How was she even sure that he wasn’t hiding anything more, like a teenage son? She rubbed her temples. She didn’t have much of a past, but she had exposed every detail to him. He knew everything about her. She felt cheated.
“Holy Spirit please help me. I feel very hurt. Please give me your peace that transcends understanding.” She muttered.
Her phone rang. It was Matthew. She had not picked up his calls since Saturday. She needed time to think and talk with the Lord.
She stood up and began pacing, arms folded.
“Lord, I’m hurt. I feel Matthew didn’t trust me enough to be vulnerable with me and I don’t like that. I understand that everything he told me happened in the past, and I don’t hold it against him. However, I am not happy that Matthew wasn’t one hundred percent transparent with me.”
She paused and bit her nail. “Help my dear Lord. Help me to let go. Douse this resentment building up in my heart with your unconditional love.”
Her phone rang again. She didn’t bother looking at the caller ID. She would deal with him when she was ready.
Do not let the sun go down on your anger.
“Lord I am not angry. I am just a little hurt, that’s all.”
Do not give the devil a foothold.
“But that’s not what I’m doing Lord. Or is it?”
And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
The Scriptures she knew so well rushed at her. She sat down and reclined. Her phone beeped. It was a message from Matthew.
Ife, I am truly sorry for keeping this part of my past away from you. I didn’t want you to leave me because I love you so much. Please forgive me. I can understand if you want some space, but please, say something to me. The silence is killing.
Ife sighed just as her intercom buzzed. She pressed it.
“Is the Statement for Josy & Josy ready now?” her Manager asked.
Ife had been so lost in thoughts that she had abandoned her unfinished task.
“It’s almost ready,” she responded, searching for the document on her laptop.
“Okay, I’ll be expecting it.”
Reluctantly, she pushed Matthew away from her thoughts and focused on her work.
She called Matthew the following morning as she drove to work.
“Ife.” Relief was evident in his voice.
“Good morning Matt. How are you doing?”
“Terrible. I haven’t slept well since Saturday.”
She ignored his response. “What’s your schedule after work today?”
“I don’t have any. Do you want us to see?”
“Yes, I would love that. Let’s meet at Craft Gourmet. 6pm?”
“That’s perfect for me.”
“Good. Do have a beautiful day, Matt.”
The brief nature of the call left him wondering. He couldn’t tell what was going on in her mind. He sincerely hoped the meeting tonight turned out positive.
Matthew arrived at Craft Gourmet few minutes past 6pm. There had been light traffic on his way. Ife was already waiting for him, head bent over her phone. She was dressed in a navy-blue gown that accentuated her shape and the smooth texture of her skin. He swallowed hard. Ife was good looking, any day, any time.
He walked up to her table. “I’m sorry I’m late.”
She raised her head. “Good evening Matthew. Glad to see you.”
“Same here” he replied as he adjusted his seat.
She sipped from her glass of water as she debated on the right words to say. Matthew spoke first.
“Ife, I am so sorry. The fear of losing you kept my tongue in my cheek. You’ve had an almost perfect life. No boyfriends, no wild parties, no frivolities. I felt you deserved someone with a cleaner history, but at the same time, I knew God made you specially for me. Please forgive me.”
His eyes burned with persuasive intensity.
“Matthew.” she started. “Is there any other thing I need to know?”
He shook his head. “Not at all. I have told you everything there is to me.”
She sipped again and leaned towards the table.
“Truthfully Matt, I was hurt. I felt you didn’t trust me enough and that was why you held back. Why would I want to marry a man who didn’t trust me completely to be vulnerable with me?”
He made as if to speak but she signaled him.
“Matt, if there is one thing I will never do in my life, it is to use your past against you. If God the Almighty can forgive you and give you a clean slate, who am I not to? Look into my eyes.”
Matthew stared into the warm depths.
“I trust you completely. I want you to do the same. We can’t erase your past, but we can put it behind us and move ahead.”
“I forgive you Matt, but I want you to promise that something like this will never repeat itself.”
Matthew cupped Ife’s hands. “From the bottom of my heart, I pledge to be open and transparent with you. No matter how good or bad it is, I will never hide anything from you.”
Matthew’s reassurance swept through her entire being.
“I love you Ife and by the grace of God, I promise to cherish and honor you for the rest of our lives.”
Ife smiled shyly.
“I love you too Matt. May our love be a two-fold cord that can never be broken.”
“Amen. I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you.”
“Be patient Mr. man. It’s just a few months to forever.” They both laughed.
“Is that vegetable I see in your teeth?” She asked, eyes round as saucers.
“Vegetable? How? Where?”
He brought his head closer to her and opened his teeth, expecting her to fish out the stubborn vegetable. Instead, she pinched his nose lightly and laughed.
“You play too much,” he said trying to tickle her.
“As long as it’s with you, I am satisfied.”
They gazed into each other’s eyes as time stopped ticking.
Thank you for following Ife and Matthew’s journey on love, forgiveness, healing and reconciliation. I sincerely believe that you have learnt a thing or two. I would love to read your feedback so don’t hesitate t leave your comments below. May the grace of the Lord keep you.