Guard Your Heart with all Diligence

All powerful and merciful Father
You are God of justice, love and peace
You rule over all the nations of the earth
Power and might are in your hands and no one can withstand you
We present our country Nigeria before you
We praise and thank you for you are the source of all we have and are
We are sorry for all the sins we have committed and for the good deeds we have failed to do
In your loving forgiveness keep us safe from the punishment we deserve
Lord we are weighed down not only by uncertainties but also by moral, economic and political problems. Listen to the cries of Your people who confidently turn to You.
God of infinite goodness, our strength in adversity, our health in weakness, our comfort in sorrow
Be merciful to us your people; spare this nation Nigeria from chaos, anarchy and doom.
Bless us with your kingdom of justice, love and peace.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord
Amen

If you’ve paid any attention to news coming out of Nigeria lately, you must be aware of how hot a mess the country is right now. At such a time as this, the Prayer for Nigeria in distress written above comes to mind. Beautifully worded to cover all the bases, I can’t help but think that if prayers were the answer to Nigeria’s woes, all her problems will be solved by now considering that millions of people have consistently prayed it for decades. Today is not the day I attempt to unravel why this has yet to be, but until that day I’d guard my heart with all diligence.

I think you should too.

And by this I don’t mean in the usual way the expression is understood. Simply put, stick your head in the sand a little. There is a barrage of terrible news everywhere you turn. For many living in this country, never have things felt so hopeless. We’re battling anxiety and depression, fear and hopelessness as it seems we’re aboard a derailed train with no way to get off. The news is dreary, and all it takes to be bombarded by an avalanche of despondency is to sneak a peak at the day’s newspapers or scroll through a Twitter timeline.

So maybe you don’t have to. Maybe you need to know just enough information that you can actually use – use to stay safe, use to keep the ones who matter to you out of harm’s way, use to make some sort of difference in your community, use to make actual decisions. And for the reportage about tragedies you have no power to affect, maybe you don’t need to know all that’s happening right now. If you can do nothing to help a situation, and if knowing of the situation can do nothing to help you, change that channel. Ditch your timeline for a Twitter list you’ve curated. Be deliberate about filtering what you consume. It’s important to stay mentally healthy to get through this nightmare, and maybe we all could do with some escapism right now. Where ignorance is bliss, it is folly to be wise.

To be honest, I have no idea if this approach is right. Or possible. But, by jove, something has to give. If you figure it out, be kind enough to share.

Go ahead, share:

4 thoughts on “Guard Your Heart with all Diligence

  1. Apt for the situation we are as a country today.
    We are at a stage in our country that it’s no longer just prayers but we must act!
    Excellent piece that brings reality face to face and upon reflection of the good old day one wonders if there a future and what it will take to be back on course.

    • Exactly T! It’s more than a little sad that we find ourselves looking back fondly at times in the past when we thought we had it bad, with our current realities making those days look like we were in paradise. But there has to be a future. There has to! I’m hoping bringing it to birth doesn’t cost more than we can pay by way of blood, sweat and tears.

  2. While it might be good to avoid all of the negative news, not knowing also shields us from the reality. I believe turning a blind eye or blocking out the negatives has largely brought us to the point we currently are.

    But like you rightly mentioned we probably need to take a break from all the bad news. Hopefully by some miracle it makes everything right.

    *Sighs* It’s just a terrible mess

    • Indeed Shevi. There really is no way to avoid all of it, for the sake of staying safe in the first instance, and then being oblivious does nothing to help with tackling whatever evil needs to be tackled. Tough times, but we are tough too so…

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