The Sunday News
IMAGINE this scenario. An old wealthy man has two adopted sons, one white and the other black. One day he drives to a distant place and in a jungle there digs two holes in the ground. In each hole, the old man puts a box containing paper work. These papers are rights to with all the property he has worked for all his years, bank accounts details and a congratulations note to the once that finds it. On his return home, the man begins to write a book on the subject of map reading. This book specifically teaches one how to read maps, and at the end of the book he puts map co-ordinates to the holes containing the boxes. The man then prints two copies of the book. He then puts the books on each of the boy’s bookshelves without them knowing. The question is, which of these boys do you think will find his inheritance from the father. Unfortunately history tells us the white son will most likely find his inheritance. In fact, the white boy may find both boxes. Let me tell you why.
There is a saying that goes, if you want to hide anything from an African, put it in writing in a book. I have been told this same saying twice this week. The first time was on Sunday, the second was on Tuesday. Both occasions I was in church. So highly likely the boy that reads books will go through all the books in his shelf and begin to even read those in his black brother’s shelf thus finding both boxes. It is a weakness in us Africans not to read books. Instead we shun knowledge and attribute our problems to our dead grandfather who does not want us to prosper. Usually this is then confirmed by some equally insane prophet somewhere who will confirm that our dead fathers are denying us the opportunity to be wealthy. His solution being water bottles and oils that he says are a powerful weapon to chase away this notorious dead grandfather. Three years down the line we have more of these weaponised bottles of water and oil in our homes. We continue in faith to torture the children into drinking these potions. As we walk around in town our skins are shiny from applying oil yet still equally poor if not in a worse state. The main cause of this is simple, Africans hate reading books. Those that do read gossip, and those with pictures to marvel at. This mentality perpetuates poverty.
The reason our churches are dumping such madness on people is that the ministers too shun knowledge. Pastoral work has been reduced to an occupation of people that have failed to make it in the world. Hence the pastor preaches to us with his lips, yet his heart is in the offering baskets, he is not in it because he is truly called, he is in there to buy a Benz. We have taken those that failed in schools and made them leaders of people who come seeking to know God in church. The same non-readers who the institutions of the world have rejected because their brain is empty we have made leaders. So he spends his days prescribing water and oil to the people and turning the church of God into a hall of motivational speeches where people spend the whole Sunday screaming I receive to whatever nonsense he chooses to shout. If this pastor could not read the text books under a teacher’s supervision at school in order to pass exams for himself, will he read and understand the word with no one’s supervision in order to teach you? In case you did not know, God himself rejects empty vessels that do not want knowledge. The reason he rejects them is simple, they shun knowledge and want to embrace ignorance. God wants us to expand in knowledge. Before this too becomes useless yapping let’s find it in the word of God.
My people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. “Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests; because you have ignored the law of your God, I also will ignore your children.”
In Hosea 4 verse 6, he does not say I have rejected you as church members, he says as priests. He addresses ministers of the word. So as a minister of the word of God, if knowledge is not part of what you seek in order to better the church, rejection from God is your future. Please my black brothers and sister, read books. Read them until the mediocrity put in your minds by colonial masters is pushed out. Develop a love for them. Force the knowledge into your mind. Teach it to your children, teach them to seek to know and understand things. The book of proverbs is full of reasons why you must seek knowledge.
Proverbs 3 verse 13 to 15
Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding, for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold. She is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her.
Back to our story of the two brothers. Even in the event that the black brother reads the book, he will most likely not go in search of the inheritance for a second reason of the African man’s poverty. That reason is our fear of the unknown. People of African descent are afraid of walking in new territory. An African man will never go to a place where he is the first. Thank God for the economic problems in Zimbabwe that lesson was forced into us. There are many simple ways to show you that people of African descent will never try new ways of doing things. Majority of African Americans have no passports. Simply means to them America is good and there is no way in this life they would not want to go anywhere else. Even just to see a new place and come back. Maybe I went too far away with that example, our brothers in South Africa are the same way. Most of them have never left south Africa. Those that did were in exile during apartheid or their work demands that they do.
A Zambian friend said to me South Africans would die like flies if their country experienced what Zambia went through a couple of years ago. At first I thought he spoke out of jealousy of the nations beauty and cheap food but it really has an element of truth. If South Africans cannot get a job, their next best option is a traditional healer, if that fails, they kill foreigners claiming they are the reason they are unemployed. My question to them is, how is a finance manager at a company preventing a guy that cannot construct a correct English statement from getting a job. What my South African brothers fail to do is try what has never been tried in Soweto. He will never consider that just next door to them is a desert nation of Botswana that consumes fresh produce from South Africa like hot cakes. This meaning as a South African citizen he can easily get a permit to sell flowers and fruits from his country to Botswana florist and fruit and veg shops. Instead he fears failure, rejection, hard work and everything associated with new territory and resorts to blaming the Ethiopian business man for his troubles. Even if one reads the paper, all they will see in this article is criticism of the African, not the business idea of fresh produce. My brother, think beyond Mbare.
Deuteronomy 31 verse 6
6 Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.
The Bible gives us assurance that God is with us. It is important to develop a sense of bravery when taking calculated risk. We focus so much on the risk of failure all the while we forget the bliss and joy of success. We look for people to blame instead of taking responsibility of our lives and making necessary changes to it in order to become better. If we cultivate a habit of reading books it will broaden our knowledge and transform our thinking. Teach how to take calculated risk at a young age and be sure your child will be a great person in future.