By Kingsley Kuku (Hon.)
One of my favourite Bible readings (or stories, if you prefer) is ensconced in 2 Kings, Chapter 20 (1-10). In this Biblical story, the Kabio Osi of God was once again cemented . It was the story of not just the miraculous healing of Hezekiah but the outright extension of his life span for 15 years by the I AM.
For those who may not be so conversant with the Bible, Hezekiah was the son of Ahaz and the 13th King of Judah. He was one of the few Kings of Judah who was constantly aware of God’s acts in the past and His involvement in the daily events of mankind. The Bible describes Hezekiah as a King who had a close relationship with God, one who did “what was good and right and faithful before the Lord, his God” (2 Chronicles 31:20).
Now in 2 Kings 20, we were told of the huge calamity that befell Hezekiah. He had become irredeemably ill of inflammable boil and God himself, through his prophet, Isaiah, told him that he was going to die! “In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death. And Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, went to him and said to him, ‘Thus says the Lord: Set your house in order, for you shall die, and not live.’”
Though distraught by this grave news, Hezekiah retained his belief in the Almightiness of God and His Mercy endureth . He “faced the wall “, wept bitterly and pleaded for mercy in activation of absolute faith:”Then , he (Hezekiah) turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the Lord, saying, ‘Remember now, O Lord, I pray, how I have walked before You in truth and with a loyal heart, and have done what was good in Your sight.’ And Hezekiah wept bitterly” (2 Kings 20, 2-3). It was not a gamble, nor was Hezekiah grasping at straws. He was drawing from his understanding that nothing shall be impossible with God especially once you work and walk in His ways. Hezekiah knew that God is merciful and able to heal him. He knew that God’s ways are not the ways of man and that God takes pleasure in showing up for you when the world thinks that it is all over for you. Hezekiah’s faith in God was staunch and unwavering. ABSOLUTE.
In verses 4 to 6 of the same chapter, the Bible recounts so beautifully how the grace of God Almighty eventually, albeit mightily, availed for Hezekiah. “And it happened, before Isaiah had gone out into the middle court, that the word of the Lord came to him, saying, ‘Return and tell Hezekiah the leader of My people, ‘Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father: ‘I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will heal you. On the third day you shall go up to the house of the Lord. 6-And I will add to your days fifteen years. I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for My own sake, and for the sake of My servant David.”’ Halleluiah!
I am neither a medical nor native doctor and I really do not have enough information regarding the state of health of the Courageous Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Odunayo Akeredolu, SAN, CON. All I have heard is that he has taken ill and temporarily transferred power to the State’s Deputy Governor, my friend and older brother, His Excellency, Lucky Ayedatiwa , as he continues to undertake treatment for his condition. It is my very fervent prayer that just like He listened to the cries and supplications of Hezekiah, may God Almighty listen to the prayers, supplications and tears of Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, and like Hezekiah, may he be healed and indeed like Hezekiah, may God Almighty elongate his life span on earth. Amen.
Ondo State in particular and Southwest of Nigeria in general desperately need Arakurin Rotimi Akeredolu hale and hearty and back at his desk in his office at Alagbaka, Akure. Governor Akeredolu and I are of different political persuasions. He is of the APC and I am gladly of the PDP. He, like us all is human and fallible. He surely, like me, have smiles, frowns, regrets and success stories in our thankless political journey. I can testify to one thing about AKETI. My Governor is courageous and fearless. He has audacity of governance courage. Amidst personal and family risks, AKETI stood, spoke, acted and sailed through the consequences, some fatal, in very demanding moments of our national history. He challenged power and its threats of death and defeated it. He was, in times when men were unreasonably weak, the soul of the struggle against oppression, banditry, pogrom, herdstry and politically-motivated violent extremism in our beloved nation. Aketi’s was (is) an audacious courage in governance; the kind, not without fatal consequences to himself, family, community and state, that has propelled extant suspicious peace. He is a warrior and patriot.
Hezekiah means “God strengthens”. Oluwarotimi means “God stays(be) with me “. And Akeredolu means “ small enough but eventually the head”. As a devout Baptist Christian who shall forever testify to the Truth and the Word, I can boldly see the link between these two great personalities, Hezekiah and Oluwarotimi.
YHWH, for Your Sake, Word, Truth and faithful servant’s supplication, prayers and cries, please, once again, let your Merciful Will Reign.
Heal my Governor, Oh Lord.
Kuku, a Peace Building and Conflict Resolution Expert, was Member of Ondo State House of Assembly, and the Special Adviser to the President of Nigeria on Niger Delta and the Chairman of the Presidential Amnesty Programme.