A force meant to ensure security has become a brewery of brutality. They shoot at peaceful protesters while criminals see them as jesters.
Where is intelligence in their tactics if they treat sacred lives like statistics? Concerned nationals yearn for reforms, why attacked them like cankerworms?
Every innocent blood you’ve shed, every law-abiding soul that has bled, every baseless injury you’ve inflicted scream that you should be evicted…
I hope the government will yield before sanctuaries turn to battlefields. If police are meant to maintain law, then cut their claws and fix their flaws.
The Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) was a Nigerian Police Force unit charged with the responsibility of curbing and combating armed robbery but it was disbanded on October 11, 2020, following a widespread protest from Nigerians which took a global dimension.
Some of the many controversial activities that SARS officers were accused of include acts of torture, extortion, blackmail, extra judicial killings, framing and sexual abuse.
However, the ongoing protest seems to have revealed a lot of professional lapses in the conduct of the police force as pockets of sporadic shootings and reprisal attacks from the police were reported. Some peaceful protesters were reported dead.
Meanwhile, the peaceful protesters outlined their demands as follows: 1. Immediate release of all protesters arrested. 2. Justice for all decreased victims of police brutality and adequate compensation of their families. 3. Set up independent body to oversee the investigation and prosecution of all reports of police misconduct. 4. Psychological evaluation and training of all disbanded ex-SARS officers. 5. Increase in police salary so they can be adequately compensated for protecting lives and properties of citizens.
There are times we feel hurt, hopeless and helpless. Life throws bricks at us to break our hearts and fight our faith. In stormy seasons like this, our strength and skills seem worthless. We tend to believe that it’s either prayers are not working or God is not listening.
I have been through such situations in recent times, I was tempted to ask, “where is God?” I stopped breathing for days. I couldn’t feel myself, God seems so distant, I drowned in feelings of defeat, disappointments, denial and delay that I was dealing with.
In stretching my faith, I prayed, praised, worshipped, cried and pleaded but things appeared to get more out of my control. In all of these, a still small voice kept on telling me that I was not buried to die but ‘buried to bloom‘.
I began to ruminate of the lives of Bible characters such as Joseph, David, Job, Esther and Jesus. These great characters faced tough situations that made it look like they were forgotten and forsaken, but God -the ever faithful One came through for them.
When you feel buried, broken or battered by the battles of life. When you feel stranded, stuck and surrounded by the storm of life. Don’t feel dismayed or despondent, God may be using the storm to strengthen you. He sometimes uses battles to build, bless and beautify our lives.
Dear broken heart, I may not know what you are going through but I know that tough times are temporary seasons that come with a lesson and a blessing. Here are some ways to hold on and stay strong in the storm.
Find support from genuine and godly friends and family.
Study God’s word, study plans on ‘hope’ would help.
Pray even when you don’t feel like, ask friend a to join you in prayers.
Listen to songs and sermons that will stir up your faith
Discard depressing thoughts and materials.
Take a break from social media (platforms) or anything that may fuel frustration.
Talk to Godand talk to people who can help.
Listen and be on the look out, God is with you and He is whispering words of faith to you.
Feel free to say these poetic prayers.
Dear God, Help me to see your hand when life’s flame floods my eyes. Help me to daily understand that You are wonderful and wise.
Dear God, Help me to walk in wisdom to know what’s perfect to do. Help me to flow in freedom to lead a life that’s true.
Dear God, Let me not turn to sin for relief no matter how tough life gets. Save me from gloom and grief no matter how sorrow besets.
Dear God, Help me to know that I am not buried in darkness to die. Help to know that I am favoured, fortified and free to fly.
Finally, here is an admonition to everyone going through troubles. “For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!” 2 Corinthians 4:17
Our voices will be heard loud and clear, our ‘friends’ are now the foes we fear. The ‘force’ that should protect our lives and properties has become the catalyst of chaos and casualties.
We won’t sit back and watch brutality bloom in our garden, we can’t stand down and watch innocent lives killed, and justice trodden.
We have a vibrant voice, and we certainly have a choice. We will not be silent, yet we won’t be violent. We will not be slack when our gatekeepers kill and kidnap our future leaders in broad daylight, but cuddle and collude with lawbreakers at night.
My soul screams, my spirit cries. Mad men without dreams should not steal sleep from dreamers’ eyes. No policeman should lurk like a predator to innocent citizens. Policing should not be about tormenting and terrorizing honest citizens.
So let my voice be heard…
I don’t want to die young, not by being killed by a rogue. I have not done anything wrong by living my best life – in vogue.
I am a sacred soul you should protect, don’t plunder my fundamental rights. You are free to question a suspect without putting a soul to flight.
If you truly are the citizen’s friend, let it reflect in your cooperation. This incessant brutality must end, show max civility in your operation.
You are trained to maintain order, Policing should not be ferocious. Don’t contribute to civil disorder, Why plunder what’s pure and precious?
The innocent lives you have slain are crying out for justice and serenity. You can’t slay another soul in vain, So let’s instantly end police brutality.
No matter what you have been through, what you are going through and what you will go through, know that you are here to live, love, learn, lead, and leave a legacy.
A lot has happened in 2020, and here are few lessons I have learned.
God is not trying to figure out how to fix your life. He has everything figured out before forming you in your mother’s womb. Joseph was sent to Egypt 13 years before Pharoah had a dream. The solution was provided 13 years before the problem. If you are patient and properly positioned, your solution is already around you.
Pain is a priceless package. It’s a bundle of blessings and lessons to the wise. It’s however a bundle of burdens and loss to the unwise. Greatness and growth cannot be achieved without a certain level of pain and sacrifice. Don’t plunder your pain. Profit from your pain.
Betrayal is a bad bargain, it ends in premium perdition. If you feel betrayed by anyone, ask God for grace to forgive them and move on with your life. Judas betrayed Jesus but he died before Jesus. He is the only reported case of suicide in the new testament. Don’t get bitter whenever you are betrayed, it’s a waste of emotion. Life has a way of paying backstabbers, especially when you pray for them (not against them).
Nobody owes you anything. Your friends and family are not obligated to help you. Their support is an added advantage. Learn to look within for strength and support when no one seems to care. Don’t anticipate hope, help and happiness from anyone. Your rich relatives, nice neighbours, sweet spouses, and amazing friends don’towe you anything. Be your own best friend. Stand Out And Rise. (SOAR)
‘Selfishness’ enhances selflessness. Yes, that’s right. People will always be tempted to use, abuse and misuse you, but you have the right to refuse to be used. Don’t die trying to make everyone else happy. You matter too. Take care of yourself. You deserve some pampering too.
Don’t sink while trying to be seen. Try to shun social rat race. Social media is a bottomless pit. You shouldn’t drown to ‘deliver’. Take time to retreat, recharge and relaunch. Take solace in solitude, serenity and silence. You shouldn’t be heard or seen all the time.
Feel free to cry. Jesus wept. He cried in pains on the cross. Crying is not a sign of weakness, it’s an expression of life. Dead men don’t cry. Break down, pick up those broken pieces to make a masterpiece. Not everyone you cry to for help will have an answer. Cry to God, get help from the right places and hope for the best. You will win.
Wow! It’s the 10th month of the year already, it also doubles as the 60th Independence Anniversary of Nigeria, my dear nation.
As much as there are a lot of things to appreciate God for, there are a lot more to pray and plan for, both individually and collectively. We all need to play our part in building the nation of our dreams. God has a plan, government formulate policies, good citizens must partner with God and the government for a nation to be great.
That said, it’s a new month and a new season. I feel that it’s a good time to share and care. However, whenever my hands cannot reach the people I care about, I always lift them up in prayers. Here is my prayer for you:
This new month, You and your family will enjoy divine peace, progress and prosperity. You will not be a victim of crises and calamity You will enjoy God’s grace, glory and goodness You will walk in great wealth and wellness. You enjoy divine direction, protection and perfection You will be delivered from death and destruction in the name of Jesus This is your month of open heavens and restoration.
What a year to be alive! The whole world was caught unguarded – pain, panic, pandemic, profit, promises and prospects plunged into our planet in shades of grey.
2020 could be simply tagged ‘A Million Shades of Choices and Challenges’. For some, it’s their best year ever while for others, it’s a rollercoaster year.
Everyone in this class of 2020 has a tale or two to tell. Death and life have been in a fierce conflict. In case you have been through a lot of tough stuff this year and you feel like all is gone, I have found myself in the valley of the shadow of death too many times this year but here is what I told myself…
Before I die, I will lend a hand, I will give. I will mend bridges, I will forgive. I will bask in bliss, I will live.
Before I die, I will flaunt my faith, I will believe, I will deploy my dreams, I will conceive. I will storm the stage, I will achieve…
Before I die, I will love out loud, I will connect. I will rewrite stories, I will correct. I will make a difference, I will affect…
Before I die, I will storm the sky, I will ascend. I will learn from losses, I will amend. I will fight with faith, I will contend.
Before I die, I will dare again, I will insist… I will gaze again, I will untwist… I will dream again, I will persist.
Death is not the end of life, it’s a transition to the afterlife. So don’t wish to die to escape the harsh realities of this realm, until you have lived worthy of a better and sweeter afterlife. Suffice to say that don’t just live to be remembered, live to be a reminder that life is beautiful.
Let who you are and what you do be a reflection of the kind of life you want to live after death. Again, death is not the end of life. Live now, live to the fullest, live your best life.
”Don’t be afraid to fail. Don’t waste energy trying to cover up failure. Learn from your failures and go on to the next challenge. It’s ok to fail. If you’re not failing, you’re not growing.” -H. Stanley Judd
Life is a beautiful garden, the more we live, the more we enjoy peace. Life is a battleground, the more we live the more we encounter pressure. Those who run from failure often ruin their chances of becoming successful.
Van Gogh’s life is nothing but a tale of caution.He became rich and famous after death, but in his lifetime, he was a failure. He burned and destroyed many of his paintings out of frustration and rejection. He was known to only sell one of his masterpieces.
He slowly began to carve a niche for himself while he was alive, but he also had a bunch of critics who gradually crushed his self-esteem. He did not work to overcome his fear of failure and eventually killed himself. Soon after his death, his works began to garner fame and financial success.
Come to think of it, God created man out of dust. It was possible for God to make a masterpiece (man) out of a messy piece (mud) because He was was able to see and make sense out of nonsense.
Dust is almost worthless, lifeless and almost valueless, but God had to create man out of it.
This beautiful and wonderful world was created out of formless and empty earth, as recorded in the book of creation.
Light was created out of the darkness. Beauty was brought out of the bland and bleak.
A lot of times, people who are too afraid to fail get stuck, stagnant, famished and frustrated. They forget that the best way to avoid failure is to do nothing, and that is exacty the surest ways to prevent success – do nothing.
Only foolish men laugh when great men fall, the wise learn from every failure. Failure is not always a sign of incompetence or lack of intelligence, it is mostly a sign that there is room for you to dream more, dare more and do more with your life.
Every sweet success is a product of bitter failure. At birth, a mother’s greatest joy, her child is delivered with pain and pressure, even the new born’s entry into the world is announced by a bitter cry.
No motivational speaker has the recipe for success, every man’s success is a product of his capacity to fraternize his failure and forge success out of the unusual union. Until you start seeing failure as the most important ingredient of success, you might not taste real success.
A seed does not need a ‘motivational speaker’ to break out from a dark and dirty soil, and then become a fresh and flourishing plant. It only needs to be in the right environment with the right nutrient. Your environment plays a pivotal role in the fulfilment of your assignment. Surround yourself with dream catalysts.
When you overcome the fear of failure by dreaming more, daring more, doing more, learning more, loving more and living for more, then you become a signature of success.