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You can no longer find 'good' women in church


I remember the days of old, when the church was better than premium Tinder.

Funny days, those. A man nearing the end of his whoring cycle would begin to make strategic appearances at the local church, hoping the Father would bless him with one of his most pious lambs to settle down with. If that lamb happened to be thin around the waist but thick beneath it, then more praise to Him.

I even remember the calibre of women church used to churn out. If I was to describe her to a sketch artist, I would highlight the long, sweeping dresses, swollen and billowy to conceal any hints of femininity. I would mention a tightly-wrapped scarf to hide away any strands of hair which could tempt men to sin. She would be clutching a Bible at all times, but only for show because she knew the scripture by heart and could quote entire passages on demand.

If I was pressed to indicate her vocabulary, I would point out phrases like "Prayer warrior", "Gahd", "Give life to Jesus" and "Yote ni God". I would also reference a tendency to cover things in the blood of the Saviour.

But what really made the church woman stand out was her personality. It did not matter what she looked like, you see, because she was truly beautiful on the inside. Warm, affectionate but unmovable when it came to the 'things of the world', prayerful, kind, resilient and demure. All of which was a roundabout way of saying she was subservient and easily trod-upon, the perfect combination for a housewife.

I also remember when men stopped going to church to look for wives. They had to, because the women they had been throwing down in Gomorrah with started flocking to those churches too, donning the unflattering gunias and reciting Proverbs. The game changed when the hunter became the hunted. Suddenly, fishing from the pews was a lottery, and most men were simply unwilling to take the chance.

The religious woman announced her return in loud, disruptive fashion a few weeks ago. One way or the other, we were reintroduced to what had surely been a dying breed. And for better or for worse, we have been invited to consider the possibility that she is here to stay.

It is a tricky thing, finding a good woman. Religion was once a reassuring indicator of morality, or at least gentleness of spirit. But today, it can be as deceptive as a coating of make-up, or a set of jiggly twins gained not from genes and the clay our Lord sculpted us with, but the miracle of science and the scalpel of a cosmetic surgeon.

Personally, I am almost pathologically suspicious of performed religion. I have always taken issue with the cabal of zealots who impose their beliefs on others, whether through judgement of actions they consider sinful or by aggressive attempts to win those lost souls. I am similarly wary of the performance of piety some women bring to a marriage.

I am sure many men would appreciate having a truly God-fearing woman anchoring their homes and bringing up their kids. Most of them will draw a line at overzealousness, however. The kind that turns his lady into a participant in church activities. The kind that invites her to refer to her Reverend or Pastor as 'Dad', and inspires her to forego her own savings just so she can contribute to the Prado her 'dad' needs to buy. The kind that grants that same Reverend the leeway to lay hands on his flock, and not in a way that banishes their demons.

I am certain my fellow men would prefer a woman with whom they can sit down and brainstorm a solution to a dilemma instead of praying for one. I doubt they would be content with putting their legs up just because they are confident God will provide for them as he did for Abraham. No initiative. No effort. Just hallelujahs and inshallah. It is the same thinking that celebrates God when things go well and vilifies the devil when they don't.

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