It’s Christmas Day | The Guardian Nigerian News
Christmas is upon us once again as Christians around the world celebrate the portentous event of the birth of Jesus the Christ, the one who is not only considered the Savior of the world, but whose birth dated and divided world history in two, according to the Gregorian calendar. Even in a world overrun by secularism and moral relativism, the continuing influence of Jesus Christ in the global context is unmistakable.
As always, Christmas is associated with the festive spirit, travel, family gatherings and the exchange of greetings and gifts to friends and neighbors. Nigerian Christians will want to extend the hand of fellowship and solidarity in charity and thanksgiving to all who have survived the unprecedented stresses and strains of the past year. The poor will also have a hard time celebrating this period, even when the most common Christmas delicacy has been put out of reach.
As we join the world in celebrating Christmas, Nigerians must not lose sight of the true meaning and essence of Christmas. The coming of Jesus, celebrated at Christmas, will herald a civilization of love and human solidarity that will replace a world of corruption and immorality, of greed and avarice, of hate, evil and violence. Yet more than 2,000 years later, our world is still mired in trouble; between the daily revelation of acts of monumental corruption by those in positions of public trust in our country, the intractable terrorist insurgency, banditry and senseless killings by so-called “unknown gunmen” around the world. Nigerian landscape, including those who ironically claim a religious motivation for their wicked and sadistic enterprise.
On the international stage, the world has continued to watch helplessly as Russia and Ukraine find themselves embroiled in large-scale violent conflicts, while the longstanding political tension between North and South Korea, China and Taiwan, as well as the Tigray region and the federal government. of Ethiopia, have not yet diminished. Human society in general continues mired in corruption, injustice and social inequity, and human degradation. Today’s biggest disasters are often man-made.
Christmas this year holds a special meaning and omen, not just for Christians but for all Nigerians, who have lived through and survived one of the most difficult years in the nation’s history. While in the year the bombardment of strategic institutions and infrastructure by Boko Haram terrorists appears to have subsided, Nigerians have faced the proliferation of murderous bandits (and so-called unknown gunmen) who have seized swaths of territory unguarded throughout the country. across the country, looting entire villages, killing, maiming, raping and kidnapping innocent citizens, including travelers and school children, for huge ransom money.
In the year 2022, the faith of even the most optimistic believer has been sorely tested in the real world of flagrant social injustices, widespread political tension, increased insecurity, and deteriorating economic fortunes, under a group of callous and clueless political people. . charge across the board, who, like callous scavengers, seem intent on ruining the Nigerian nation and eviscerating the Nigerian people for senseless and venal gain.
With these harrowing realities, how, we may ask, are Nigerians expected to celebrate Christmas? The challenge of Christmas, however, is to rekindle hope in the realization of the powerful prophecies of the prophet Isaiah about the people who walked in darkness on whom a great light has dawned; about a time when the wolf and the lamb, the calf and the lion, the cow and the bear will be together in peace, and the child will come to no harm playing in the cobra’s den or probing the viper’s den.
The challenge for Nigerian Christians, as we commemorate Christmas, is to critically reflect on their national circumstances and re-examine their commitment to live out the prescriptions of Jesus, abiding by the high Christian standards of sacrificial love, selfless service, justice and equity, human solidarity and universal brotherhood. Nigerian Christians must be prepared to apply these values to break down the many barriers we see standing in the way of accountable and transparent government, healthy development, national integration and peaceful coexistence. We must accept as Nigerians the obvious reality that the obstacles to true nation building and the desired prosperity for our country are not in our stars, but in ourselves. It is within our reach to make the dreams of the prophets of yesteryear come true, to transform this nation into a haven of peace and development, using all the human and material endowments with which the Creator has blessed us. Yes, it is within our power to change our circumstances for the better, especially as the nation approaches a major national election exercise.
We urge that Christmas this year not be just a party for the delight and sumptuous consumption of a privileged few in an otherwise comatose economy. Instead, we must work to translate our widely acclaimed religiosity into a more godly life at both the individual and corporate levels and take the necessary steps toward much-needed transformation. It is on this note that The Guardian wishes all our Christian readers, and indeed all Nigerians, a Merry Christmas, with the hope of the emergence of a better Nigerian society, in the New Year 2023.