It was during my ministry at Wesley Cathedral, Olowogbowo, Lagos in the late 90s that I met Mrs Jumoke Soyemi, a member of the Cathedral and Methodist Evangelical Movement. Mum Soyemi later introduced me to her daughter, YINKA Ajai-Ajagbe who occasionally joined us in some of the evangelical meetings at Olowogbowo. YINKA later introduced me to her fiance and I was privileged to be part of their marriage preparation and we became very close family.
YINKA, at 48, my initial responses to your sudden transition and change of address was shock, denial, replay, yearning, confusion, powerlessness, anger, and loss of hope. I often mentally replay every actions, prayers and discussions we had prior to your death and now with a sense of powerlessness trying to process the huge shock and the ultimate tragedy especially to mum, dad, and your children. Indeed, life is the beginning of death. YINKA, my consolation is that there is eternal life beyond death and grave.
God made a wonderful, daughter, wife, and mother called YINKA born on 18th February, 1971. God made YINKA smile of the sunshine. God moulded YINKA’S heart of pure gold. In YINKA’S eyes, God placed bright shining stars. In YINKA’S cheeks fair roses you see. God made a wonderful daughter and gave that only child to Mum Jumoke Soyemi and Rev Wole Ajai-Ajagbe. God made a wonderful wife, a model of Proverbs 31 virtuous woman and gave her to Bimbo Okubena on May 27th, 2000. God made a wonderful mother and He gave that dear mother to Mobola and Olakunle. God made a wonderful sister, and He gave her to me, a sister who loved me ‘like a father.’
YINKA, life for you was not an easy journey. You did not allowed the agonising periods of existence to make you to lose your hold on God but you allowed those periods of loneliness to serve a renewing purpose for you. YINKA, pain and hard work were the raw materials which made your soul increasingly inspiring and sensitive to God love’s existence and the needs of other people around you. From your school days at Federal Girls College, Sagamu, and University of Lagos, Lagos, you made the right choice between the one crucial life division – life based on God and shared with God – and life divorced from God, leading to oblivion. You allowed God’s peace to work upon your deep wounds. YINKA, you disciplined yourself to see life against the background of God’s eternity; this enabled you to endure (joyfully, though in pain) the inevitable intrusions of darkness and disappointments.
Who can find YINKA, a virtuous woman with character and ability? YINKA’S price is far above rubies. YINKA’S price is above the seductions, immorality and wickedness in this world. YINKA did no one any evil but good even to strangers. Indeed, YINKA’S tireless and unfailing industry lasted all the days of her life. YINKA did not only sought wool as a designer, decorator, caterer, Modern classic curtain maker, she walked and worked willingly with her skills. YINKA went to every length to save money, even worked with her hands. There is no hint of laziness about YINKA. She was like the merchants ships. YINKA brought her food from near and afar. When YINKA bought something, she did so with the idea in mind of using some of it for her family, especially her children and do business with the remaining. YINKA as a captain of industry did not eat bread of idleness, but lived by example, especially in wise use of money and materials.
YINKA was an investor. She was constantly praying and planning as to how to provide for her family. YINKA kept herself and especially her children in good health with proper discipline, good moral, food, and clothing. YINKA, bearing in mind her tight schedules, got a carer for her mum. YINKA did not fail to help the poor and the needy. Coming difficulties do not catch YINKA shortsighted, but the cross and stress of such difficulties were too much for her to bear. Indeed, adversity reminds us that life is short.
Beloved, YINKA’S sudden transition reminds us that the closed casket and grave of today will one day be open and YINKA’S body will resurrect with other saints.
YINKA, you carried the Cross to the end. The Cross is saying that the pain of life cannot be avoided, but it is also saying that such pain can be transformed when the Divine love is given an entrance. YINKA, using your profile words, you ‘did not throw away your confident and trust in the Lord. Great reward awaits you in ETERNAL LIFE’ Heb 10:35. I am sure of God’s tender appreciation of what you endure upon earth.
I am not questioning God. I am just thanking God for your life. You worked hard like a man to give the best to your children.
YINKAAAAAAAAA, you are not dead, your fruits abides. Your labour is not in vain.
Mobola, your beloved daughter whom you raised with Olakunle your son with the fear of God told me early this morning that the family Bible verse Romans:8:28 you taught them is now their inspiration in this difficult time.
YINKAAAAAAAAA, your last word and response to my text two weeks ago gives me assurance that you are with your Maker. You said”So true rev sir. There’s is no true friend like Jesus. Good morning rev sir.”
Please remember YINKA’S Mum, Mummy Soyemi, Olowogbowo Methodist Cathedral, YINKA’S dad Pastor Wole Ajai-ajagbe in prayer. Please pray for YINKA’S children, affliction will not rise again over them in Jesus name.
Using an African proverb, when death came to find YINKA, death found YINKA alive in Jesus Christ. I pray for someone, ‘when death come to find you, may it find you alive,’ and not dead in sin in Jesus name