ASK AND IT SHALL BE GIVEN UNTO YOU…maybe not by Pearl Osibu

On my mind, relationships and abuse.

I have many friends, few good friends and even fewer close friends. But the fact remains that I have friends aplenty. As is inevitable, I have had the friends that are like a heady rush of blood to the brain, we talk every day, and then it fizzles out; and I have had the friends with whom I enjoy (or suffer) long silences – and they yet endure. We pick up after weeks of not talking where we left off like it was yesterday. Many have fallen off my radar it seems hard to believe there was a time we spoke every minute!… and many I have carried with me over the years; these friendships have been tried and tested and they have withstood all the metamorphosis I and they have undergone. And yet, we stand.

While I may love them in different ways and to varying degrees, there is one aspect I wish to dwell on. Gratitude. The friends who when I think of them, I think how time and again, they save me. Friends I know I can always depend on if I have a need.

Even on this score, there are levels. There are the ones whom I know wish to help, given the need, but are just unable; there are the ones who say they will but need many reminders; there are the ones who respond instantly. But the class A in this group are the ones who ANTICIPATE my need. Even when they cannot meet it, they know that given these set of facts, I am likely to need this at this point in time, and then promptly respond or apologize, and usually they don’t have to say much because they have shown their support in past instances and even as they struggle to convey their deep regret, it is unnecessary and I am the one left with the task of reassuring them that of course I understand.

I know.I can say without a shadow of doubt that could you, you would. Definitely.

What I, we, will however never accept from a friend is the suggestion that I was in a dire predicament, and they had the ability to help me, and they either didn’t notice, or noticed, even boasted that they could help, that they had the solution I sought. But choose not to. Depending on the gravity of my need, and the sense of betrayal, that could very well be the end of such a friendship. I mean, the ‘friendship’ could limp along, but it’ll be like when you say, ‘at least I know where I stand with you.’ It is very revealing. And unforgiveable.

Add to that the person being highhanded enough to tell you that they denied you this support because they know what is best for you. Not even parents should be allowed to do this, unless you are still a child. If they trust the upbringing they gave you, when you say you want something and it is in their power to oblige, they should entrust it to you. If you self-destruct, this is why you are an adult. Adulthood is sacred and should not be trifled with. The power of choice is sacrosanct. Mistakes can and should be made. Prices will be paid. And all is well with the universe.

But first, trust. Entrust to me my desire and leave me be – if it doesn’t hurt you to do so.

So I am standing in my kitchen filling up bottles and a song from my Christian days comes to me;

O yes the answer’s on the way, this I know

Jesus said it, and I believe it that it’s so

Our heavenly father knows our needs before we pray

And we can rest assured the answer’s on the way.


The third line struck me.


Anticipate my request

Prepare to deny

Ask me to ask anyway.

And I think, what the hell kind of bullcrap is this?

The most abusive relationship I know is between a man and his chosen deity, especially the Christian God. There is something deeply disturbing to me about the fact that;

I have a problem

You say you have the solution

You know I have the problem

You wait for me to come and ask you anyway, in fact, you insist on it.

So I ask and ask and ask, several times, loudly, with deep tears and grief, continuously.  In desperate instances, I go into seclusion and denial. And ask and ask and ask.

And all the while, you already had your plan, your answer which is mostly likely No actually. How much of what we want/need do we get without Man’s intervention? I am not talking a new Porsche though that’s on. I am talking relief from pain, sickness, need for food, shelter, clothing, health. I am talking averting natural disasters. But your mind was already made. No. But ask me anyway.

Which is okay.  It’s your prerogative. But as a good friend would do, do you take the time to tell me why? Not guesswork. Not, leaving me thinking, ‘if my daughter had lived, I think she may have ended up in jail,’ No. But like, try to really make me understand why you let such horrible things happen which you claim to foresee and have power over.

So then, God, any one you subscribe to that demands this of you is sick. And insecure, needing constant ego-massaging and validation, feeding off your neediness, without which they would be safely ensconced in the annals of history where all the gods belong in a holy orgy.

Not even your earthly parent would do that. Does your dad have you line up for hours on end asking, ‘Daddy, school is resuming, please give me school fees.’ Then he has you come back over and over and over and ask and ask and ask?

Why do we let our gods such leeway then? What is the hope when you know the answer is as likely to your liking as not? What is the point of praying? What is God doing when you had to ask the first time? Then he has you come back over and over and over and ask and ask and ask?

Why does this not make you angry? Why do you permit it? Why do you worship and return over and over to some figment passed down to you, reinforced over time that cares nothing for you? Where is the atmosphere for so called faith?

You are a masochist. Were this a man/woman, parent/child relationship, your relationship with God, would you accept it?

I hope you have better judgement with your romantic relationships. At least, those are with real people that can hurt you. If you love your fellow human the way you love your gods, allowing this kind of abuse, they will use you to do toilet roll and it will only serve you right.




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  2. topazo

    having our requests refused and feeling rejected is the painful aspect of our belief system. how can we have the most powerful being on earth as a father and then not have everything we need? it is mind boggling…I still struggle to grapple with it most times. there are times when God comes across as outrightly mean and cruel.
    but then consider these:

    1. you mentioned that a parent can only deny a request of a child, but as adults even though the request is to self destruct, then it should be granted. True. But you have forgotten one fact, even though we are ‘Adults’, in the presence of God, we are ‘children’! in Luke, Jesus referred to grown ups as “little children” and further adds “it is your Father’s will to give you the kingdom”. This ‘kingdom’ however is not the earthly. NO, and that is why we feel betrayed when he denies us earthly things.

    2. you mentioned Him trusting us. True again. Any relationship is based on trust and when that trust is betrayed, the relationship dies. if you demand trust from God, I ask you, doesn’t he deserve same? Do you trust Him when he says ‘No’? Do you trust that as a Father, he isn’t evil or malevolent? Do you trust when He says He has something better planned? If you do, you won’t feel so hurt. Do you want Him to trust you first or wouldn’t you rather trust Him? There is a measure of trust when you decided to ask, but would you rather He answered and not watch out for your best interest? would you rather use Him to get what you want, screw His opinion and feelings? I don’t think so.

    3. Any relationship is based on love and affection. it is the basis for any friendship. so it is assumed that you love God and He loves you, hence your relationship (or was your motive for befriending Him was for Him to meet all your needs? then it will be you that has the problem and not Him, cos it would mean He merely outsmarted you!). so if He loves you and you believe that, then you know that when He says ‘No’, it isn’t out of an evil heart or malevolence. He must know what He is doing and if he says He knows what is best, He must really love you to want to give you the best! Now, is that a crime? He says “hold off on the snacks, the main meal is almost ready” and we all know that snacking spoils the enjoyment of the main dish. He is such a wise God!

    4. The relationship is a Deity-Worshipper one. it confers sovereignty and superiority to Him, even if he stoops to be your friend. Never forget that! if He says ‘No’, can you really challenge Him? if He is God, and He is the Almighty and All-seeing, All-knowing, shouldn’t you defer to His superior judgment and reasoning? Do you presume that you know things and see things better than Him? Do you not want to acknowledge that he might have a bird eye view of what you are just seeing one dimension of? are you too proud to stoop and tremble before Him, your maker? Do you now take the fact that your Deity has chosen to be your friend for granted? have you now reduced Him to a mere mortal like you and compare Him to friendship with fellow mortals?
    the worshipper has only one duty to the Deity, and that is worship and submission. where is yours?

    5. He is your friend right? when you were busy doing all the asking and seclusion, did you bother to ‘ask’ about Him, His feelings and what He needs? or is your relationship one sided, and always about your needs? See, when He taught you how to pray, did He not put “Let your will be done” before ‘Give us this day our daily bread”? Did you somehow get this mixed up? how about the part about “seeking first the kingdom of God and ALL other things (the ones you spent the better part of your days chasing and asking for) shall be added”?
    Maybe He is saying No because you have gotten the order wrong? did you bother with a soul searching before all the tantrums and feelings of betrayal?

    6. on soul searching, did you stumble about possible reasons cited for not receiving? “you ask and receive not because you ask amiss?” did you ever stumble on that part in your bible study (if not, aha! you don’t even know enough and yet you are whining). if you did, did it minister to you? did you just gloss over it and assume it wasn’t applying to your case? did you do a soul search to see if your desires are aligned to His? you demanded for an explanation from Him, did you bother asking Him why? could it be that the fault was from your asking?

    7. if you needed something that would you help you self destruct, will He be reasonable if He granted your request? will you worship such a God? will He earn your respect? when you have finished your tantrum, you will see that your argument is flawed and you are like a child rolling on the floor for being denied candy. if your friend tells you he needed a rat poison to eat, would you give her money or help procure it? if you will, then you are a dangerous fellow. because allegiance to friendship means you should keep them from harm even if they don’t have a clue about it. that is what He does sometimes.

    8. I don’t have all the answers or claim to do. But give all these a thought and you might see Him as not so wicked, and feel less betrayed and hurt. you might learn to love Him again and trust Him, one step at a time, one day at a time. I have been disappointed one too many times myself but there are so many variables that we don’t know about and thus can’t lay it all at God’s feet. We keep on because we love Him and we choose to trust Him still.

    9. He gave His own Son to die, made Him a sin, neglected and forsook Him on the cross. at that time, it looked wicked but it was for our salvation, and It elevated the Son to a position of power. with God, what you see is not what is. it is just about you trusting. remember Job? it eventually turned out right! for you too, it will turn out right, if you don’t stop trusting…it is hard but don’t let go. you know in life, anything that is good, doesn’t come easy. everything worthwhile is worth waiting for

    10. wait for God. “God is good to those who wait for Him…it may will surely come”


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