A Call To Arms (Part 1)

I had a dream where I was back in my secondary school. I went to boarding school in Abuja for six years and it was a rather hard time for me but I will discuss that some other time. I was with three friends of mine and we were on our way to class for night prep. On entering the classroom we encountered a man who seemed to be a local from the nearby village; he looked unfamiliar and threatening and once I saw him, I started praying in tongues. He was soon joined by four of his counterparts. Their leader took charge and one by one told us we were free to go until he got to the last one of us.

His manner was one that aroused a deep fear and I knew not to try and play the hero because he would not hesitate to do away with any of us. He took the last of us and told the rest of us that we had 48 hours to deliver 1million dollars. Failure to obey would result in the delivery on my friend’s head. I was filled with fear but there was another part of me that knew there was no way that I could do nothing. My dream doesn’t end there but to cut a long story short, my friends and I did something and although it wasn’t without a cost, these kidnappers were unable to leave the school with my friend.

We all know what has happened to the 234 ladies from Chibok, Borno state and the latest bomb blast in Abuja that apparently happened again at the same spot in less than a month. I cannot begin to imagine the terror that those young ladies are feeling right now and the atrocities that have been committed against them. There are theories that claim these events have been orchestrated to undermine the Goodluck Jonathan regime. That may be true but let us not lose sight of the fact that just because his presidency can be undermined, and in such a shameful manner, more than questions the president’s capacity to lead.

At the end of the day, these are precious lives being lost and we don’t do any more than complain about it and insult our leaders. But we need to ask ourselves if we are any better. How involved are we in the politics of our nation? How many of us know the name of our Local Government Chairman? As I write this, I have no clue who he/she is. Corruption is a convenient excuse for a lack of interest in the affairs of the nation. We have this ” me and my own” mentality to excuse our lack of interest in making this country a better place for all.

If there’s one thing this whole situation has accomplished, it is to wake Nigerians up and remind us that it could happen to you. Whether you’re cruising in your range rover with your mobile police and your 20 escort cars next to a hawker selling oranges on the road, a bomb going off between the two of you will kill you both. And at this rate, it won’t matter whether you live in the north or south; do we want Boko Haram to hit Lagos first before we know an attack on the north is an attack on everyone? We deserve the right to demand better and we need to be better.

Having read my words, a natural response is “Well, what am I meant to do?” My answer to you is this…..I don’t have a prescribed formula. It’s highly likely that I’m as clueless as you because I am guilty of your sins. But a small thing such as liking a photo on Facebook or Twitter is a start. Lend your voice to the campaign. And don’t stop there…get involved in the politics of your nation. Know what is happening in your country so that when an opportunity presents itself to make a change, you are well equipped to take advantage of it.

In our offices and our homes what are we doing? The problem with us Nigerians is that we suffer from a fundamental character issue. If you can jump the queue at the toll gate or filling station, the you can definitely steal money if you are put in the position to do so with minimal repercussions. Both situations are fundamentally the same; taking advantage of an opportunity to exploit the situation at the expense of other people. If you are telling your children and anyone who cares to listen to you that this country is hopeless, you are giving them no reason to hope for or demand change.

I choose to believe that there is more for us. Call me naive, I don’t care. I believe that there is the power of life and death in the tongue and so I will continue to pray for this nation and say good things about her future. This is what I believe God is calling us, especially those of us in the younger generation, to do. We have been strategically positioned to become the leaders that this nation is crying out for and our training started long before this day. Wherever you are and whatever you’re doing, recognize your place as the agent of this nation’s change. And you don’t have to wait till you get into political office to do something. What are the needs in your community?What breaks your heart and what can you do about it? That’s where your service begins.

Meanwhile, join the voices on social media for our girls to be found. We owe them that much at least.

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New Year’s Musings

Happy new year people!!! I pray that this year will be an amazing one for all of you, that the Lord will show up for you in awesome ways and that He will cause all things to work together for your good in your life. I pray that this year will be one where you will be totally submitted to God and that you will allow Him to draw you to Himself and reveal Himself to you. Because the truth is that you cannot really know who you are or what you have been called to do and be until you have known God.

I also want to say a huge thank you to all of you that have been consistent readers of the blog. Thanks for your encouragement and for leaving your comments and questions. Please keep them coming…they motivate me to keep writing, keep thinking (anyone who knows me knows that I can think for the world) and keep listening out for what God lays on my heart to share with you.

There’s a deep sense of urgency and excitement as I write this post tonight. It seems that God is speaking so many things to my heart today and confirming a lot of the things He had spoken to my heart a long time ago. I can’t go into detail on a lot of them because there simply isn’t the time and I’m trying my best to make sure my posts stay as brief as possible. So I’ll summarize the different things that are going through my mind right now and I have a strong feeling that I will talk about some of them in more depth in subsequent posts.

  1. God is literally screaming out His words of DIRECTION and is willing to guide us on the right path to go in this year if we will take the time to spend time with Him and listen to what He is saying. God speaks to us in different ways depending on who we are and the nature of our relationship with Him. I know for a fact that, now more than ever before, God is looking to take us by the hand and guide us by giving us specific directions on what to do and where to go. We just need to listen out for what He’s saying and we need to be OBEDIENT!!!
  2. Obedience is key this year. People please, when God gives you and instruction, just obey Him. It might seem difficult at first or even ludicrous but the first thing to do is just say yes and then ask Him for the grace to do what He has asked.
  3. That’s another thing that God has made available in truckloads this year: GRACE. The bible says in Hebrews 4:16 that we should approach God’s throne of grace with boldness and confidence so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. I know for a fact that God is telling me not to try and rely on my own strength or abilities, especially this year, but to lean on Him and trust Him to take care of things for me. I have so much on my plate especially this year and I can come up with many excuses to abandon God’s work and focus on other aspects of my life like work and exams (CFA level 1, the Lord is my strength). But if I rely on God to equip me, I can find that I will get the results I need without having to work as hard at it. Now please note that I am not saying I will not work at all because God’s word says that the man that doesn’t work should not eat. What I am saying is that instead of relying on myself completely and thinking my success is solely dependent on my efforts, I can do my part and allow God to work out the rest. That way, He takes all the glory.
  4. God has called us to be agents of CHANGE. I have seriously slacked in this area and have allowed myself to either become comfortable with things that rightfully bothered me about my country or I have blocked myself off from those things because I did not like the feelings of anger and annoyance they elicited from me whenever I allowed myself to consider them. However, the truth is that those things that elicit righteous anger in us are the very things we have been called by God to do something about. Each and every one of us is the change we are looking for. Start in your house, with your family and friends, in your office with your colleagues and ask God for the wisdom and strategy to stir up the change you seek.
  5. Finally, we need to be people of STRATEGY this year. That means that we need to sit down, figure out what God wants us to do, who He wants us to be and ask Him the most important question which is HOW he wants us to achieve those things. We need to start walking in PURPOSE people. The time to guess or go with the flow is fast running out and we need to take the steps to identify our calling in life. There’s a level of confidence and surety that people who understand their purpose walk with. They are not distracted by what goes on around them; instead there is an otherworldly level of focus that confounds and can even elicit negative emotions of anger and jealousy from people who don’t understand it. But when this is tempered with love and wisdom, it becomes a wonderful too that draws others to Jesus.

 

That’s it from me today people. I know today’s post is a bit longer than usual but I do hope that it speaks to someone. I look forward to hearing from you and please don’t forget that God loves you and longs to have a relationship with you.

Love always,

Grace’s daughter