Monday, December 12, 2011

Are You Borrowing To Offer Gifts To People?

Engineer James Tangumonkem (my invible partner) offering me a gift in 1996.

 In 2010, a friend of mine asked me to carry her sister in-law from Atlanta to DC, Maryland. When we reached town, she told me that she wanted me to drop her in her boyfriend’s house. He gave her the wrong address, so we kept driving and driving in circles. I saw a police officer and wanted to ask, but she discouraged the idea. So we kept driving and driving for an hour as she argued with her boyfriend on the phone. A a certain time, he hung up and will no more pick up the phone. I got a bit angry and parked by the road side. I finally flaged the police who told us that the address was a wrong address. I told her that I was not going to be driving for more than one hour looking for her boyfriend’s house. She said “I don’t know why he is not picking up the phone.” I felt sorry for her. Furthermore, I had sold her some jeans for more than $200, so I felt like, if we do not see the guy, she may give back my goods. So it was in my vested interest to find that boyfriend of hers wherever he was hidding. So I said “leave him a message and tell him some of the things you have bought for him, and he will call you back.” She did and immediately he called us back and gave us the right address. Hers was at least better, for she had the money. What about you?

Some people indebt themselves to offer gifts to people who do not even care about them. Some take their families and friends to eat out on credit. Today I want to examine the morality behind indebting one’s self to offer gifts during holidays. Sometimes it hurts me to pick up a phone call and a Christian tells me that she has a list of 22 people she wants to offer gifts to and would like to know how many I want to sponsor. Another one said that he wants to offer gifts to his nephew and niece but does not have money. I asked him if the kids have kidnapped him? He said no. So I said, "bro keep your flesh checked, for you will be ok without the gifts." I have made it as a principle in my life not to buy if I don't have money. If I don't have money, I don't eat out. I was called to mediate between two friends for unpaid debts. One of them said, "pastor, when I took the money, I even bought him a gift for his birthday. Did I do anything bad brother?" He asked me.

It is unchristian to have Christians as criminal debtors; those debtors who know they are unable to pay a debt, yet they still get into it. If someone owes a student loan or some car note, one will understand, but this credit card thing, I just don't get it, especially unpaid. Many people have bad credit because of unpaid debts. Talk less of those who owe every relative and friend, dead and alive. I have never used a credit card, but I am still alive and well. If people are not comfortable with you because you do not give them gifts, so be it; let them disown you. The day you suffocate, they will know that those who are rejected suffocate.

Why do people eat out when they have not paid their light bills? Why should anyone be giving gifts to others when he/she owes rents? Why are you buying gifts for people when you have a huge student loan. Many Christians have bad credit because of unpaid debts. Why does a Christian eat out when the/she has not paid his/her light bill? Why should anyone be giving gifts to others when they are indebting themselves? Some owe almost all their friends and even enemies. Others have fallen out with best friends and relatives because of unpaid debts which they actually took to offer them gifts.

I was a teenager in Douala in quartier Nkoulouloun where I grew up. A Bangante man died, people came to the wake, but there was one particular guy who was crying more than even the widow. So he quickly gained sympathy and attention. The more people looked at him, the more he cried. So one naughty teenager said,
"toi aussi, tu pleures même plus que la famille et la femme.” He turned and looked at the young man, then suddenly turned his face towards the corpse on the bier, and he cried again “Alphonse, pourquoi est-tu parti avec mon l’argent?” Then another person too just shrieked. Two others on the far end screeched. It was then that we realized Alphonse was in a Tontin -Njangi , and he had already eaten. All of a sudden, the family had to remove the widow from the place for fear the creditors harassed the widow to pay the debts. The many who cried him hard, did not cry because they loved him, but because he owed them money. Since there was no contract signed that he owed them, it is unlikely that his family will cover such debts, and these friends could not just sit and see him leave with their money.  

My friends, irresponsibility is in various forms, and borrowing money to offer gifts during Christmas and New Year is one of them. I do not see why people make themselves criminal debtors just because of pride. There are many people that when they will die, people will not cry them because of the love they had for them but because they have gone with their money.

If you do not have money and must use credit card, get the food and cook at home and entertain your family. It will be much more cheaper and responsible. As if some are possessed, they will take the little money they have to buy gifts for people and three months after Christmas and New year, they will be living in darkness.

A gift is from what you have. If you do not have, do not give. I don’t mean the other extreme of never ever having.

Until then, do not give gifts if you have to indebt yourself.

Prince & PA Hamilton Ayuk.
“Bonyfish beware because the same net that caught the jawless fish, caught the cartilaginous fish” (Hamilton Ayuk). Beware earthly paradise seekers because there is a serpent in every paradise"(Hamilton Ayuk). Idle people write, idler people read, and idlest people read and whine that idle people are taking their time (Hamilton Ayuk).

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