By Atejunomi Otidi
Our dear State, is an amalgamation of ethnic nationalities comprising, Igala, Okun, Ebira, Bassa, Kakanda, Ogori, Oworo, Eggan, Gbagyi and other smaller ethnic dialects.
The groups were brought together under one administration by the Colonial Government and called Kabba Province in the then Northern Nigeria. In spite of political and administrative changes, the geographical configuration of the area comprising the State has remained largely intact.
This history which ought to have been a factor of strength, unity and advancement has unfortunately not been tapped and the over-a-century long bond of togetherness has been mismanaged in the last twenty seven years. Thus the various constituent ethnic groups are now at daggers drawn. Politics and political administration has become warfare and thuggery devoid of a strategic approach to human and physical development of the area.
The ethnic groups are divided and are always seeking to take advantage of each other or acquire unfair advantages. This situation has ensured the evolution of a political leadership that owes its legitimacy to ethnic championship, corruption and brute force as exemplified in the political thuggery of these days.
The result of all these therefore, is that the State instead of developing has degenerated to levels never experienced even in the colonial days. Indeed, the colonial era is now a reference point for good governance thus negating all the efforts expended at fighting for independence.
On the spiritual plane, as the degeneration in political affairs accelerated, evangelism and real church planting declined.
It is to be noted that much of the early education in this area was as a result of the efforts of missions that established various institutions within the nooks and crannies of the area when government institutions were far in between and sparsely located. The products of this early education became the engine room of the northern bureaucracy. Unfortunately, these early leaders did not strategically ensure the protection of these institutions from government control.
In the seventies, these mission schools rather than increase in number, were taken over by government and the evangelistic platform of these institutions was blunted. Thus emerged the ascendancy of education which did not emphasis Christianity and the fear of God.
The lack of knowledge and fear of God in the conduct of the affairs of our State is the principal cause of our developmental dilemma. Until God and godliness standing on the pedestal of justice, equity and righteousness is enthroned in the governance of our State, we shall be running in circles.
Our youths are growing without the fear of God in their lives and the evidence of a bleak future with them in control is already staring us in the face. The current security and developmental crisis will pale into insignificance if we do nothing NOW!
What should we do?
The good news is that in spite of the above situation, the position of God has not changed! All through the ages, it has always been the people that moved or sinned against God. God remains faithful to His Word and will perform it as His children cry unto Him. Exodus 3:7-8.
He will always pardon the repentant heart and heal their LAND! (2Chro 7:14).
We should therefore be wise and approach His throne of mercy with a repentant heart on behalf of our State.
There have been attempts by concerned Christians to join the struggle to free the State from spiritual, political and material poverty. They were either consumed or their career truncated or denied participation by the opposing forces of retrogression.
These forces are potent and very present even today and should not be underestimated.
However, we strongly believe that the struggle to free our dear State from underdevelopment, poverty and want must first be won on the spiritual plane.
We also believe that the previous attempts of well-meaning individuals have failed in the past because the spiritual angle of the struggle was not seriously appreciated and explored. This was a costly omission.
The pervasive presence of darkness over the land can be seen by the struggle to pray and preach even in the Churches (Isaiah 60:2a). The presence of the Light of God in these churches are so dim that they spend most of their time fighting the forces of darkness even in their sanctuaries. Some are content to be spiritually lukewarm and devoid of the power of the Holy Spirit. But the Light of Christ does not negotiate with darkness (I John 1:6-7). Darkness flees in the presence of Light.
It is therefore, obvious that until children of God accept their responsibility and take it seriously by seeking the revival of their families and the Church, nothing different from the present state of woes will happen.
The good thing however, is that a few people can stand in the gap for the people. That is where you and I come in. We can begin the journey of rescuing our state from underdevelopment on our KNEES!
We have access to the throne that controls everything in heaven and on earth.
Taking over the spiritual plane
God is ready and willing to visit His people and heal their land. BUT they must do the needful.
2 Chronicles 7:14 is very clear on what God expects of His children.
These are to:
- Humble ourselves
- Seek God’s face
- Turn away from our wicked ways.
The choice for us in order to ensure God’s sovereignty over Kogi State is clear! (Gen 17:8, Exodus 29:45). God is willing to come to our aid. He has done His bit and will do more if we embrace Him and seek His face.
A call to action
Beloved, I perceive in my Spirit that we need to pray. And to pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17). And the time to start is NOW!
We need to raise prayer altars all over the country, particularly in every local government of Kogi State and at our family devotions for God’s mercy and the redemption of our State spiritually and physically.
I am sharing this burden with you believing that you will join us in prayers to seek our Father’s directives on how this task can be done.
I do not have any plan or resource of my own, but I trust that He who has called us to His service will guide, direct and provide for this noble task.
May His grace and power of resurrection be our constant strength as we take this matter before Him.