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JUNE 14 2020 | LETTER NO. 4 | MY FIRST TIME
Dania's Letters

I don’t remember what year it was, but I still lived with my parents at the time, so it was probably just before University. Sometime between 2004 and 2005. It was a Tuesday morning and we were getting ready to attend church midweek service – my parents’ church has morning and evening options for midweek service. Earlier that week, my mum had unearthed and given me an old dress of hers. It was a silky brown dress with a very cinched waist (my mum never fails to remind us – she did so again just yesterday – about how she’d maintained a waist size of 26” until she birthed my brother, her first child). It was really the most beautiful dress and I could not wait to wear it the next opportunity I got.

I excitedly laid out the dress that Tuesday morning, but after years of being folded in a box, it was in dire need of ironing. However, power was out. Now about this time in my life, I was just learning about praying and getting results. Asking and receiving. For anything and everything, even the little things. So, in that period, if I needed power restored urgently, I would simply say, “electricity come back now in Jesus’ name”, and light would be restored. This had been happening for about a week or two if I remember correctly, so I was pretty confident in this “method”. That God heard me and answered my prayers.

All that to say, the absence of power that morning did not diminish my excitement. I went on to have a bath and gave the usual command, “electricity come back now in Jesus’ name.” Nothing. “Electricity come back now in Jesus name!” Still, nothing. “ELECTRICITY COME BACK NOW IN JESUS NAME!” By this time, I’d started to worry a little. Was a power line down? Transformer blown?  I got out of the shower thinking that, perhaps, I had used up my quota of power-restoration requests.

Then suddenly, quietly, firmly, I heard on my inside, “Go and change the phase.”

Me: Lol, what?

My parents’ house had a three-phase meter and I knew how to switch across phases when one line had power while the others didn’t. It didn’t happen often, but usually the security guard would come up to change it. As I stood there contemplating what I thought I’d just heard, I heard it again, “Go and change the phase.” I was more than a little spooked as I’d never heard something like this before, but I thought to myself, well why not? I put on my dressing gown and made my way to the front door. Halfway to the door though, I thought to myself, what are you doing?? I paused, did an about turn, and went back to my room. 

As I got ready for church, I kept repeating my “electricity come back now” chant. At some point I switched to flat-out begging God because "I really, really wanted to wear this dress and would He just do this simple thing for me." Still, power did not return. I stalled until I could stall no longer, so crestfallen, I picked out another outfit and flew after my parents who were already threatening to leave me for taking too long to get ready.

When we got downstairs, we discovered that the rest of the house had electricity and we needed to change the phase on our meter. Stunned, I pleaded with my dad and flew back upstairs to quickly do so and iron the beloved brown dress.

This was the very first time I discernibly remember hearing from God.

Do you remember your first time? Have you, yet?

Recently, someone asked a question recently about how to discern God’s voice and part of my response was that it took practice. You see, over the years God has led me through various major life decisions but He didn’t start by speaking to me about whom I should marry or what name I should be called – He started with a dress. Something small with minor consequences, and then gradual increments in weightiness until I was comfortable enough to recognise His voice and be led in major decisions.

On Repeat
Here Now (Madness)

United is my favourite band ever. Empires is my favourite United album. My favourite thing about United is their obviously inspired way with lyrics.


Skies spin their dance within Your breath

Time runs its race within Your hand

My mind runs wild to comprehend

What no mind on earth could understand


I didn't have any one song on repeat this week so I initially struggled with selecting a song for this section. I considered leaving it out altogether because I'd promised myself that I wouldn't send out any letter that wasn't entirely inspired.


Your ways are higher

Your thoughts are wilder

Love came like madness

Poured out in blood-washed romance

It makes no sense but this is grace

And I know You're with me in this place

Actually I considered not writing you a letter at all. I was distracted a lot this week and couldn't quite find the time to sit and hear. Then yesterday evening, I woke up with this song in my soul. So I put it on and sat. And heard.


Here, now

All I know is I know that You are

Here, now

Still my heart, let Your voice be all I

Hear, now

Spirit breathe like the wind come have Your way

'Cause I know You're in this place

Binge Jesus.

I randomly stumbled on this video of Steven Furtick speaking about hearing from God and I found it really interesting. I suspect you will too. 

Okay confession, it wasn't entirely a random stumbling. Normally I’d scroll past Steven Furtick, but Ugo started attending his church recently so when this video came up on my YouTube autoplay queue, I thought to listen to "this my husband’s new pastor."

Confession x2: I only inserted that first confession because last week, Ugo proudly mentioned that he's featured in all my letters so far. I was torn between, leaving him out to wipe the smugness from his face, or continuing what might now be a tradition. I guess love won (>_<).

Steven Furtick: Maybe God

I hope you experience many intimate moments this week, where you know that He is there; with you in that place.

If you'd like to share this with someone, you may use the forward button ( > ) in the footer - it's beside the social media icons.

As always, my email's in the footer if you'd like to write me back (or just hit 'reply').

Live free,
Live free,
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Chronicles of Dania

Lagos, Nigeria

dania@chroniclesofdania.com

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