Our great nation Nigeria has come of age and the era of “we are still a young country” is long gone. At 56 years after independence, Nigeria is no longer a child. A 56 year old man is definitely not a young man, he would probably be a grandfather, especially here in Nigeria; indubitably, Nigeria hasn’t done so badly as a nation at 56. This nation has amazing people as its citizens, one of the most interesting human beings on planet earth. Nigerians stands out anywhere they are, they break and set records at will in all fields of endeavour, they always have a way of bringing out humour in everything be it good or bad, hence we are adjudged one of the most happy people on earth. And God in his greatness has joined us together despite our idiosyncrasies, tribal, ethnical, cultural, traditional, and religious and so many other differences, He made us interdependent of each other, irrespective of all that has happened or still happening, we are still together as a nation.

Incontrovertibly, the journey hasn’t been smooth, the challenges seem insurmountable sometimes, and other times, the disappointment by our leaders seem so unending, but the most inspiring thing is that, despite all the tough times and the challenges starring confidently at us as people; Nigeria is still a nation and we are still together as people and getting stronger as citizens. Many countries of the world hasn’t experienced half of what we’ve experienced and still experiencing, but yet, they have gone through and are still going through series of war and are lost in the dark.

Having said that, I feel the truth is, as citizens, we haven’t used our capacities or capabilities to even the minimum level both as a people and also collectively as a nation. The phrase “Despite all, we are still together as a nation” is almost becoming a cliché to justify our ineptitudes, our slackness and failures. No doubt it is important we recognize and be grateful to God for keeping us together as one, but yet, we have not done as much as we could as a nation, neither have we in anyway used our potentials as much as we can as a people to develop ourselves and the nation. We have over depended on just one natural resource at the detriment of other resources God has blessed us with. We have also over depended on what can be done for us by our ever failing and disappointing leaders, rather than we maximizing our potentials as people for the growth and development of the country.

I have had the opportunity of travelling across 32 states in the country and I must say that each state has something unique God has deposited in it, whether it is fertile land, tourist attractions, mineral resources and above all, the most important and valuable of all the resources; the people: youthful, strong, enterprising and smart Nigerians across the country, and if all of us will properly and positively harness our energies and bring our capabilities to bear, we will bring so much progress and development to the country.

It is exactly one year ago that we celebrated the last Independence Day, and I make bold to say nothing much has really changed in the last 365 days. Sometimes I feel we are only going round a circle and also as if our leaders are only doing trial and error experimentation without any clear cut strategy or direction. This is my thought sometimes and I might be wrong or I might be right, but I believe any concern citizen might feel the same way too, but one thing I have come to accept is blaming anyone whether it is the government or other citizens won’t work, it has never worked and it will never work. The truth is, we all have a role to play in making Nigeria great. My little contributions and yours can make a big difference. And it starts with the little things, i.e. our words, our attitudes and our prayers. I personally believe these three things are simple but very powerful.

As the country marks another Independence Day today, we the children of God join the rest of the citizens to celebrate too. We celebrate not as people in bondage, be it economic recession, political or religious bondage, for “So then, brethren, we are not children of the bond-woman, BUT OF THE FREE.” Galatians 4:31. And thus, we “Stand fast therefore in the liberty with which Christ hath made us free, and be (we are) not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” Galatians 5:1. We celebrate as those free because we are the descendants of Abraham, we celebrates as children of the King of kings and as those redeemed by the blood of Jesus Christ.

So I encourage you all my brothers, to “Let your LIGHT (which is our identity in Christ) so shine before men (anywhere we are i.e. schools, offices, in business, in your homes, communities etc), that they may see your good works, and glorify your father who is in heaven.” Matthew 5:16. For “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.” Matthew 5:14.


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