Behind the massive walnut desk in the centre of the Office, the minister of finance sat feet clad in pink stockings on the table. He cut a resplendent figure in his bespoke white shirt, colourful suspenders and wine-coloured bow tie. A snifter of brandy took solace in his left hand, while his right hand cradled a smoking cigar. Looking up, he blew concentric rings of aromatic smoke into the air, after which he sighed contentedly. Life was beautiful.
His phone rang and when he picked, it was the President. He was wanted in the presidential villa. There was going to be an economic summit and he was going to spearhead it….
Looking at his charts, while watching the latest financial news in Africa, he wondered what good the economic summit was going do. The country was in disarray! Fuel prices had gone up coupled with inflation. The price of oil, the staple export had dropped significantly. Conversely prices of food had gone up astronomically. A glut of supply from the highest oil producing countries had depressed prices. Power outages crippled efficiency. The stock market had gone south. Cries filled the air about devaluation of the currency. Fear had infected the bloodstream of the people. The populace were at their wits end. The ruling class had no clue what to do. There was no hope in sight. The nation was under the siege of economic depression…..
…In the early hours of the morning, the Pastor woke up with the state of the country heavy on his mind. He opened his bible to Genesis and was whisked by the winds of the Spirit to the beginning before time began. This was before gold and silver existed, a time when there was no money or any medium of exchange.
The earth was a roaring ocean of darkness, waves of dark winds billowed in thunderous consternation, murky shadows formed impenetrable walls and gloomy blankets of inky blackness settled over the soup of nothingness that was the world.
Above all this a seeming phantasm of a dove existed, flew over the chaotic swamp. The essence of the bird hovered and flooded the disrupted matter. Then a booming voice as clear as a bell suddenly rang out and filled the void.
“LET THERE BE LIGHT!!!!!!””
The words rolled over themselves in waves, echoed to infinity and beyond causing a susurration in the midst of the formless waters. A magnetic core formed within out of which crystallized flaming swords of light that cut the night into ribbons of nothingness.
The Pastor closed the good book meditating that before anything existed, the word was spoken! The word is the precursor to all existent matter, the pluripotential stem cell that gave birth to everything. It had the power to create, to bring alive! He lay on his bed awhile, pondering on these things.
His phone rang cutting into his ruminations. He wondered who it was at the time of the morning. It happened to be a call from the President. He was being invited to the Villa to attend the economic conference. Apologies were made at the impromptu notice.
He was amazed that he had being invited considering he did not get along with the country’s ruling cabinet and usually decried most of their actions. There was even a time the president had mandated that he should be arrested. However, the President was now desperate for a solution and he was ready to get it even from the most unlikely source.
He attended the summit. The discussions were heated especially when the Minister of Finance stood up to address the floor. He took everyone through a series of permutations and economic jargon. Nobody had enough nerve to say it but it was clear they were going round in circles.
The President asked the Pastor for his own take on the whole situation. Under divine inspiration, the man of God got up and said the whole situation of the country was going to change for better in the next 24hrs. “By this time tomorrow, the economy situation would have been reversed,” he said.
The minister of finance laughed him to scorn. He had been angry that the Pastor had been invited to the summit. What did the bible and prayers have to do with economic affairs. What did the bible toting preacher know about world economics? Was the President going mad???
He snorted and derisively pronounced, “Even if the heavens rained dollars tomorrow, this situation cannot change!”
The man of God replied him, “You will see it but you will not partake of the windfall.
As prophesied, the next morning, war broke out in the Arabian countries that were causing the glut, affecting their refineries and ultimately supply. The demand for the nation’s oil rose with the fall in supply from Arabia and the price of oil rose with a speed swifter than a cheetah on methadone.
That same day, the Crimes Commission agency of the country discovered some discrepancies in the finances of the ministry of finance. The minister heard this and tried to make a quick getaway. As they left the gate of his house, the news of the rising oil prices was on most of the radio stations. His mind could not fathom the whole thing. How seemingly mere words had brought about positive change in the face of daunting challenges. A frisson of disquiet caressed his spine but he shut it down and urged his driver on.
On the way to the airport under the cloak of midnight darkness, a truck had broken down on the pot holes riddled roads. There was no caution sign to indicate its presence. The Minister’s Prado jeep rammed into it! As the agonizing wails of screeching metal filled the air, the last words that echoed in his mind were the crystal clear words of the Prophet…By this time tomorrow….
This story is a modern day rendition of 2 Kings 7