The joy of Easter
Today is Easter. The commemorating of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ, though he was in the form of God, did not regard his equality with God as something to be grasped. Rather he emptied himself, becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a Cross. But on the third day, he resurrected from the dead in a glorious triumph which we celebrate today.
As we exult and rejoice over the resurrection of Jesus Christ, let us resolve to live, imbibe and live a new humanism shown in selfless service to our fellow citizens. By his death and resurrection, Christ has taught us that life is for others and that our attitude in life should be to render selfless service to others even those they cannot directly repay us for the service. In other words, Easter is the celebration of our common humanity.
But unfortunately over the last few months, lawlessness has been ignited in different parts of Nigeria. It appears as if the Hobbesian state of anarchy is loose upon the land. While the country sickens for insecurity of lives and property, the people behave as they occupy the lowest rung of human civilization. We now live in a country that is increasingly torn apart by deep hatred, violence, betrayal of the popular will and social strains. Our streets and alleyways are now overrun by kidnappers, bandits, hired assassins, burglars and thieves and trouble makers. Greed, individualism, narcissism, hatred, open rebelliousness, agitation for secession, drum beats of war, the instinct to dominate others and a whole bundle of vices are now the trademarks with which to define Nigeria.
Obviously, these are frustrations that stem from our failed federalism, social and political imbalances, inequalities and injustices meted out to undeserving persons. But we should not allow these frustrations to transmute into hatred and open hostility to one another. Nobody is a single verse. We are members of the same human family notwithstanding our tribal, religious and political differences. We are greater together than apart. Therefore, we cannot allow our frustrations to tear us apart. With the spirit of the resurrected Christ, let us continue to forge friendships across different divides. Even though debates should be encouraged on how we can exist together, we cannot allow the prejudices of the past to hold us captive.
Therefore, we call for a moral renaissance or a new national rebirth in Nigeria. We must restore the power of moral indignation in Nigeria. We need to raise the standards of public behaviour in Nigeria. Granted, nobody is perfect but brazen impropriety should not be condoned especially among our politicians. This Easter invites our leaders in government to identify some common values from which to build a new Nigeria where justice, service, peace, respect for human dignity and mutual understanding reign. Christ came to serve not to be served.
Therefore, our political officeholders should imitate the self-sacrificing service of Jesus Christ. Christ was not aloof from the people. He lived among the people; spent his whole life with the people; shared their anxieties, hopes and aspirations. He fed the people with the finest wheat when they were hungry; he healed the sick, consoled the sorrowful and wept for the dead. These should be the social concerns of our political officeholders at Easter.
On the whole, we need a new humanism in Nigeria based on true dedicated service, unity and love. We must learn to see Christ in our neighbours. We need a country where the citizens are not wolves unto their fellow citizens. If Christ has sacrificed himself for our redemption, we have to reciprocate that sacrifice by sacrificing ourselves for the good of our countrymen and women. Let us not forget that our singular action has either a positive or negative effect on others.