Happiness is Peace

Happiness
is feeling the strain leave your face
letting go and watch your grip fade
joy makes it way like a river welling from your insides to your heart and registers a smile
By the grace of God…
you are here
you can rest
The battle is won
the work is done

– Ezeonyeka Godswill
(c) 2021

THE CHOSEN: Retelling The Story of Jesus Christ

If you are a person who nitpicks your way through movies only going for those that you are sure would prove to be eternally and critically relevant, then we have something for you. This movie series is a Loaves and Fish production, co-produced and distributed by Angel Productions. In a time such as ours, when old movies and screenplays are being rewritten and reenacted using more contemporary equipment, time-honed skills and modern techniques, the great stories of the Bible are not left behind.

Meet The Chosen. The Chosen is a story of a man on a mission to tell his people about God in the face of Roman colonization. It is set in 20-30 AD Israel. The characters are familiar to those who may have read the Autoptic gospel of John or the synoptic gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke. The slow storytelling and great acting make for a compelling story by Dallas Jenkins. The plot of The Chosen is non-fiction and based on the life of Jesus Christ. The series aims to showcase Christ “through the eyes of those who met him”.

For anyone who has seen any movie about the life of Christ while he was physically on Earth, the plot will prove enchanting and fully immersing.

The Chosen is a Vidangel adaptation of The Shepherd, a short film also created by Dallas Jenkins. The Chosen is a massively crowdfunded project. Infact, The Chosen is now the top crowdfunded filmed project, having raised over $16.2 million from 316,000 investors.

Yes, there are long moments and the progression is quite slow, but it all adds to the reverence with which Christ is portrayed in this record breaking screenplay. Dallas Jenkins has said that he wishes for the movie series to reach the eyes of a billion people, so it is safe to say that everyone is the target audience.

In a time of a full spectrum of intellectual and cultural perspectives, The Chosen appears to be the chosen Jesus’ story of our time.

Unlike other depictions of the life of Jesus, such as A.D., Jesus of Nazareth, Jesus, The Passion, Jesus: His Life; The Chosen comes away from the usual technique of following Jesus around as he delivers analogies, dissertations and life-changing miracles. The Chosen series also takes the dynamic perspective of portraying Jesus as a shared character in the lives and stories of characters like Matthew, Mary Magdalene, Simon Peter, Andrew, John, James and others.



From wide shots of the choice locations, mid shots of threatening Roman soldiers and close shots of thoughtful Jews; the cinematography is quite engaging, coupled with a rural ambience and sounds that leave you “waking up” from each episode.

The Cast features Jonathan Roumie as Jesus, Paras Patel as Matthew, Shahar Isaac as Simon Peter, Elizabeth Tabish as Mary Magdalene, and Erick Avari as Nicodemus. The Cast is succinctly chosen and proves their mettle from episode to episode; and you can watch the other movies mentioned in this article for a sort of template for the characters. From December 24th 2017 till now, the Chosen has been distributed by Angel Studios.

All in all, The Chosen is a serious project and its impact is just beginning to be felt beyond the circles of cinema enthusiasts, internet explorers and critics.

With Season 2 airing its last episode in July, we are starting a new series of reviews on The Chosen’s season 1 episodes. We hope our perspective on the series’ storytelling will enjoin you to watch it and more importantly, read up The Synoptic Gospels for more understanding on the life of Jesus.

Download The Chosen App here to watch the series for free.

Watch Season One’s trailer here.

Worth is in Your Hand

Worth is in your hand.
I hope you understand
Those talents on demand
They had no special glands

An ovation they hyped
In formation they clapped
But like an unchanging dot,
the point is who I am

Too saved to give a damn
supernaturally armed
Jesus inner man
When problems tryna swarm

I stayed building my clan
When money was the plan
Naira, Cedi or Rand
From Naija to Iran

This partly cooler man
Came bearing love in arm
Transformed me to a lamb
From a symbolic ram

Why fight over lands?
When I’m hair to the skies
Truth rooted like the yam
I am loved by I am

Uc Truth
(C) 2021

It was the happiest day of my life

It was the happiest day of my life when I allowed Jesus into my heart. My heart was flooded with joy and unspeakable peace. In Him I found a friend like no one else would ever be. Just like new lovers, I was always seen with Him; talking, praising, worshipping – I couldn’t get enough.

Day by day, he came. He entered the parlour, went into the dining room. Oh, the dining room! There were lots of breaking of bread. He opened my eyes to mysteries. I learned, relearned and unlearned. I just couldn’t get enough. Every minute with Him was priceless.

Until one day, an old friend came knocking. I peeped and asked what he wanted. “Just a few minutes, then I’ll be out of your hair,” he said. My heart told me not to, but his dazzling smile, pleading eyes, and obliging countenance were enough to compel me. He smiled and entered.

He was with me when Jesus came. I quickly hid him in a little room. Jesus came in, looked at me deeply, and asked. “Is there anything you would like to tell Me?”

“No.”

His countenance fell.

Our fellowship was not so sweet. But I bothered not, I was eager to conclude the story I was being told by my old friend.

When I was alone again, I ran. To the small room. Where he was. He invited me to a party the next day. I agreed.

The next day, I felt very awkward at the party. I missed Jesus. But I can’t bring Him here. This is not really His “thing”. As I was contemplating leaving, my old friend came and introduced me to his other friends. Little by little, I warmed up to them. I forgot the time.

When I got home, Jesus was waiting for me at the dining table. “It’s time for our breaking of bread,” He said. I dragged my feet to the table and half listened, half slept. Jesus suddenly stopped. 

“You were late today. Where did you go?” 

“Oh,” I said uneasily. “Out with some friends”.

“Can I come with you next time?”

“Oh no, never mind. It’s not your thing.” 

“So why would you go to a place I can’t go?” He queried.

“I can go wherever I please. I don’t need your permission. I’m done with today’s fellowship. Please let’s meet another time,” I said.

Jesus, my ever-gentle friend, did not argue. He picked up His scroll and left.

It broke my heart to see him go. But I was too proud to call Him back, to tell Him I was wrong.

The next day, I went late again. I dropped a note at the doorknob for Jesus. You can start without me. I will join you soon.

The next week, I dropped another message. Please, Jesus, can you not use the dining room? Some friends are coming over. The guest room is all yours.

On and on it went. I stopped bothering to check the guest room. I was so busy with my old friend and his friends. 

One day, while reveling with my friends, I remembered MY FRIEND. I asked for help, but none came. I dragged myself outside. My old friend came out and saw me. “There’s more for you here. The party’s just begun. Come and join us.”

Then I saw the loop: I was reveling in discontent, reveling in sadness, reveling in emptiness. I shook my head with a firm “NO” and trudged on home. 

The night was cold. The wind bit into my skin. I was tempted to go back but I soldiered on. Home. Jesus. Warmth. 

I got home. Looked in the guest room. Saw Him, with His oil lamp. Waiting for me. As always. He looked up at me. “You came today. Welcome.”

A tear slid down my cheek. I went to Him, knelt and sobbed. No words. “I am here for you, I love you,” He said

Like a lamp bursting forth, I broke down in tears. After an hour of reconciliation, I gave Him some keys.

“What are these for?”

“They are the keys to my home, my heart and everything I have. I surrender it all to you. I can’t control my life right. But you can. So, I surrender all.”

Jesus smiled His oh, so loving smile, touched my head and said.

“All is forgiven. You are free”.

I have never regretted that decision.

EMENIKE CHINWENDU VICTORIA

©2021

Now we know

For we are not ignorant of the devices of the enemy
With all the vices going on in various parts of the world
We are firm in the promises of the Lord in His word

The scriptures contain the truth we need so we search
It helps us guide our heart with all diligence all the way
We keep on with the fight of faith for fear is a defeated fellow

Now we know, we wrestle not against flesh and blood
This war we fight neither with swords nor physical strength
But the weapon sharper than two edged sword; the word

So we let not our hearts be troubled for He is with us
We put on the breastplate of righteousness in all
And walk with our heads high in victory parade always

Lady Nancy
© 2020

Enough

“Madam, would you like anything else?”

No.

I’ve. Had. Enough.

I’m done with this junk you serve on a platter
This sorry excuse of a diet
That I swallow,
To convince myself that I’m eating
A 5 second prayer, one verse of scripture
To convince myself that I’m growing…
I’m sick of it!

I’m tired of your new recipes
Food that feeds on me.
Superficial Christianity with a dash of religion,
Truth served rare with ego stuffings.
Glamorized gospels that are far from good news
leaving me bloated, constipated
full of myself and void of Him.

And what’s with the drinks?
Sweet to taste, but leaves an unquenchable thirst
words promising but empty
incapable of answering life’s burning questions
Don’t you serve Living Water??

And why is your food so costly?
your charges are outrageous!
My relationship with God, My peace, My joy, My destiny is too high a price.

So I’m sorry Mediocre Christianity
I won’t be having any more.
I’ve. Had. Enough.

Damaris Akhigbe
(C) 2020

Hello Fear

Hello Fear!
Dear dear! I know you well.
I saw through your charade especially the times you sounded like you cared.
Yet I gave you room in my mind.
Grace found me and faith came with him so there’s no more space for you.
You were never really my friend, for you held me back from being the best version of me.
You clouded my dreams and blurred my visions.
You made clever speeches about how you’re shielding me from disappointment and hurt.
Your truth is all a sham!
I’m free from your grip now and I know you, you’ll never give up.
But I also know your voice too well to open up again and let you in.
Take your walk of shame with every sense of pride you’ve got,
IT’S OVER!

Ijeoma Obi
© 2020