BY: Dan Phale*
Over a decade ago a well-wisher made a decision to donate a borehole to a community which lies close to place where the offices of my work is situated. He thought he should channel such a donation through a person engaged in any of the pastoral works. In accordance with his understanding and belief, such a person would be the most trusted one… Yes, he preferred spiritual leaders to any of the social leaders because most of the people shared a common view that the latter group of leaders have often been associated with corrupt practices.
Through one known as Mbewe, one of the residents in the target area, Pastor Gabriel was identified and introduced to the donor. So through Pastor Gabriel all processes commenced to identify the site. There and then the donor identified the contractor who came and drilled and fixed a borehole. And sooner than later the community members were all smiles for having a borehole within their reach for safe drinking water… Thanks to a well-wisher. But none dreamed what the so-called Pastor Gabriel was up to.
Everything was in order with respect to the usage of water from that borehole. Periodic elections were held in order to choose from the borehole users leaders to oversee the borehole usage issues. But about ten years later things changed. The pastor’s attitude and demeanour got changed drastically.
One day, last week, people woke up to get the stunning news that the pastor had just made an order that all the office bearers should relinquish all positions earlier held by each of them. And this week the pastor has made another order that all the money which has so far been paid in form of annual contributions by each of the water users be surrendered to him with immediate effect. As if this is not enough, the opportunistic church leader has again stamped his authority by raising the amount of the annual sum of money for each of the water users to pay, an issue which has irked everyone. Amazingly, over ten years, about one thousand water users have been paying quite huge sums of money as annual contributions; and this money has never been used because the borehole has never developed any mechanical fault, thanks to the sound management of the borehole as spearheaded by the removed position bearers.
Meanwhile the pastor is on record as having once said that the borehole could be turned into a very lucrative business for him and his family to become rich because it was donated in his name. Rumours are also rife that he formed his church only after the news about the intended donation of the borehole had reached him. His only aim was to grab the opportunity to become rich. Suffice to mention herein that the community leaders, as led by the same Mbewe who is the most key witness, have filed a civil suit in a court of law against the opportunistic church leader.
In fact this unfortunate story is but a tip of the iceberg. Certainly there are many religious leaders who are harvesting where they did not actually sow. Instead of being exemplary by living up to what they do preach on pulpit they are doing quite the contrary. Greed and hypocrisy are what they show. Now, if the spiritual leaders are nothing but crooks, then who shall the world look up to for moral advice? Your answer is as good as mine, “nobody“.
But the Bible says we should be alert because during last days there will come false prophets in God’s name. No wonder there are too many churches today in the world with self proclaimed prophets or prophetesses. I mean, has our God been divided?
Well, let us be on a lookout, for people of such bad attitude and thinking might be living in our midst. Otherwise we may be betrayed by the very people whom we have ever considered as righteous.