The phrase, “only God can save Nigeria” is a common refrain used to punctuate any discussion of crisis in Nigeria. Talk about the lack of electricity despite a myriad of power generating options, and someone will say, “only God can save Nigeria.” Or discuss the high crime rate fueled by youth unemployment, immoral leadership, and maladministration of bountiful resources, and you will hear a sigh of despair followed by “only God can help Nigeria.” Downward spiral of the country? – “only God can deliver Nigeria.” Hyper-corruption? – “only God can help Nigeria.” Destructive leadership? – “Ehh…only God can save Nigeria o.”
Now, when we say, “only God can save Nigeria,” what do we really mean? Do we mean that God is responsible for the chaos in Nigeria and therefore only He should clean it up such as when you tell a child to clean up after him/herself? Or do we mean God is the only entity big enough to ‘save’ Nigeria. Either way, we are putting the onus on God to “save Nigeria.” Given this line of thinking, let us select a method from one of plenty God has used in the past to ‘save’ countries:
Option 1: God could save Nigeria as he saved Noah’s generation. He could send a hurricane or two to clear out the country except for a chosen family. Hmmm….who would that be?
Option 2: God could save Nigeria as He saved Sodom and Gomorrah from themselves by incinerating them. If we choose this option, we must begin to say our goodbyes to our West African neighbors.
Option 3: God could save Nigeria as He did the children of Israel when he brought them out of Egypt. If we choose this method, God would take the current crop of Nigerians out past Niger, way into the Sahara, burn their brains out, let everyone above 40 die, and then resettle the rest somewhere in reclaimed desert land.
Option 4: God sent Jesus to die for the sins of the world. Any volunteers for Nigeria?
It is said, “heaven helps those who help themselves.” God does not ‘save’ without requiring some action such as repentance, transformation, or challenging enemies of righteousness. Likewise, there is no way, God will ‘save Nigeria’ while we sit back and point out the problems to Him. As such, we can do better than mutter the apathetic phrase, “only God can save Nigeria.” As Tunde Bakare of Save Nigeria Group stated: “British people fixed Britain, Americans fixed America, Italians fixed Italy, Spanish people fixed Spain. It is the responsibility of Nigerians to fix their own country.” Too many sectors need revamping – education, industry, micro and macro enterprise, banking, tourism, natural industries such as fisheries and farming, cultural artifacts, not to talk of government. Indeed the list is long. So, instead of looking up to God, look around and work faithfully; join hands with others to make the country better because only Nigerians can save Nigeria…with God’s help.