I am Nigeria and Nigeria is Me

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Rise, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there till I tell you.” (Matthew 2:13)

As we read in today’s Gospel passage, God sent an angel to warn Joseph in a dream to take the child and his mother and run to Egypt because Herod was about to destroy the child. However, unlike the Holy Family who were just three persons, the only flight we can afford is not out of Nigeria but into a better Nigeria; that is, we the citizens working with our own hands making use of the abundant resources that God has already endowed us with.

No country ever became what it is by luck, it is a question of the calibre of people who identify themselves as its citizens. The goodness or badness of Nigeria so to say is only a function of my own goodness or badness. If I am dishonest, lazy, and wicked, that is exactly what Nigeria is.

I cannot be hoping for a better Nigeria to happen when I am not willing to change my own evil ways. I cannot be praying for Nigeria to become good when in my sphere of leadership, I am worse than Herod. I cannot be dreaming of a new Nigeria when I can afford to see my fellow Nigerians suffering, yet, I partake in the looting of public funds. Nigeria will only be good to the extent that I am willing to be good.

While our Gospel passage speaks of the Holy Family running because of a bad leader, our first reading contains a prophecy of an extraordinary leader who will actually make life beautiful for the people. This leader will have the spirit of wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge, and fear of the Lord, he shall be impossible to bribe, in fact, righteousness shall be the belt in his waist. Wouldn’t you rather become such a leader for Nigeria?

Let us pray: Lord Jesus, your mother understands hardship, may she intercede for a better Nigeria. Amen

Bible Study: Isaiah 11:1-10, Ps. 72, Ephesians 2:13-18 &Matthew 2:13-15,19-23)

Fr. Abu