(BY IGE TEMILOLUWA)
Growing up as a child, many things were fascinating to me about cars and their operations; their different types, brands, shapes, colors and sizes, mode of operation and particularly how my dad got it to move was very amazing. I can remember turning the “long metal rod with black balls on them that stood in the middle of the two front sits” (which I later came to know was a gear) to a quick mathematics teacher helping me recite and relearn the figures 1-5 every morning, the letter “R” meant something to me (promise me you wont laugh) …..REPEAT!! So it had me reciting the figures over and over again.
Driving to school and church got boring over time for quite a number of reasons. The funny thing is I still can’t point out one reason. I just didn’t enjoy it. Even with all the boring trips, a seasonal trip remains refreshing anytime it comes back into my mind; the trip to my village during the Yuletide period. That was like the only trip I always looked forward to and no wonder my face always brighten up with deep smiles towards the end of the year. I loved traveling with my parents to the village. Then, just another Christmas came and I was once again anticipating the long, straight and smooth trip where we could always tell the end from the beginning (I am not God though but word from knowledge). To my surprise, this time, it was a totally different experience from what it used to be. Something totally different from the usual; bumpy roads with quite a lot of potholes and bends. My eagerness and anticipation disappeared in a flash. The impression that the road gave took away my excitement and my young self all of a sudden came to the conclusion that we weren’t going to the village this time and this trip was leading s somewhere worse with less fun. I slept off on the road because the journey was boring and tiring. When I woke up, to my utmost surprise, it was a lot better than the village where I thought was the best of places. The streets were good to behold. Big buildings with beautiful façades, well-grown and nurtured trees and a lot of paved lawns, various tourist sites and many more. Guess where I was……. Abuja! Nigeria’s federal capital territory! … (And that was my first time there J )… well, I thought all I saw during the day was all there was to behold of this 21st century city in Nigeria but the night proved me wrong. Well-lighted streets with beautiful fountains, and lots of other fascinating things.
Now my talk 😉 … many times in our journey in and through life, we have this unvoiced expectation of how smooth and uninterrupted our sail in life should be. Never envisaged being left behind by the school bus or being picked up late from school not to talk of having to miss school for a day because of a simple stomach ache or a slight weakness. Thoughts of failing a course or having to repeat a class is very wide and far from or well pictured future. It always has to be smooth and well worked out like the heroes in movies who never die. The truth is certain events and occurrences through our sojourn as travelers on this road bring us to a better place than we ever imagined for ourselves in life. We sometimes also fail to realize that nothing good comes on a platter of gold. Even gold has to go through fire before it is valued and appreciated. We are quick to forget that most times, the hero sometimes has the most fatal accidents / wounds.
Just like the story I narrated, the bumpy road filled with bends and potholes painted a picture of a bad end . It developed a negative anticipation in me with lots of mixed feelings about what lies ahead. These bumps and bends might mean different things to different people. It could mean failure and disappointment to some and to some others; it could simply mean life challenging situations, sickness, depression and many more. We most times allow these events and challenges to weigh us down and it looks like the end of the road would offer something bad. We are quick to conclude that we cannot get to our most expected destination anymore or probably develop the fear that we won’t be able to get there in record time. Unfortunately, people around us also sometimes tend to interpret these events to be as a result of or our own lackadaisical attitude and lack of seriousness has brought some of these things along our way. These challenges, depression, failure and what have you comes in along your way, would you rather chicken out and walk with your heads bowed in shame and defeat? Would you stop at the nearest juncture, change your direction and gaze from the glorious destination ahead of you just because of a little delay or bend or would your option be to look for a short cut that will most likely cut short God’s plan for your life and make the journey longer? Ask the prodigal son and King Saul in the good book, they have stories to tell along this line.
No don’t!! For whatever reason for which you’ve come to that bend or rough part of your life, all I know is that it’s just for a little while, it will soon pass. See them as just passing through. Different people have passed through different periods of their lives and come out strong and celebrated. Jesus did, Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King also had their own period of passing through. When you see these challenges as a springboard, it will encourage you to keep moving till you get to your final destination.
Your life may not be going the way you imagined it but it’s never too late to make a change and show the world that what’s going on now is just a bend and not the end of your road. So, stay calm and try to enjoy the rough part while it lasts. Remember that the darkest part of the night is the closest to dawn and there is always light at the end of the tunnel.
Be focused! Stay strong! It’s all going to be worth the drive at the end!