By Prof. Shija
The silence of God frightens me. He is so deadly silent that most people run somewhere else seeking the gods that can speak in real time. But such idols and their priests are mere creatures of God, in quest for survival.
As we speak, millions of people are in one trouble or the other and are praying to God. There is agony, anger, anguish and frustration in the land on account of killings, kidnappings, banditry attacks, ethnic cleansing, corruption, treasury lootings and so on. The poor are exasperated. They keep saying, “God dey” but the real God hides somewhere in the abstract and remains strangely silent.
Anybody with guts or privilege claims to speak for God. Leaders and representatives of organised religion speak so convincingly about God’s manifold and conflicting channels of communication. Prophets, diviners, babalawos, dibias and even politicians regale us occasionally with direct messages from either the great God or minor ones.
Godless nations in Europe, China and even America with their deceptive mantra of “In God we trust” appear to have long discovered the futility of waiting for divine communication. They act. They take their destinies in their hands. And I guess if Africans continue to wait endlessly for the voice of God, these nations might sooner or later conjure up one for them by AI through 5D or 6D technology in such a mesmerising manner that could have a palpable global effect.
Back in Africa, orphans and widows are being molested. Hundreds of Chibok girls and sister Leah Sharibu are still being violated in captivity. Boko Haram, Bandits and warrior herdsmen are wiping out families and villages in Benue and other places in the Northcentral. Yahoo boys are drugging and murdering pretty girls in hotels to make ritual wealth. Daredevil politicians are busy stealing billions of bastard dollars meant for the poor and the needy. There’s still untold hunger, disease, starvation and deprivation afflicting millions of people.
Yet the people are still praying. The police are investigating. The governments are budgeting. The priests are sermonizing. The pastors are preaching. The imams are Allah-hakubating. God still remains silent.
Nigeria is a Godly country. Citizens pray many times in a day. There is a mosque and a church in Aso Rock villa, the seat of power. Our national anthem, coat of arms and parliamentary prayer are couched as prayers. Millions of muezzins call for prayer every morning and millions of evangelists bombard the Nigerian skyline every evening with prayers in tongues. Our problem certainly cannot be a lack of desire to communicate with God. It is God that refuses to talk back. He still remains silent.
Perhaps, we sometimes think of democracy as coming to the rescue. We regularly recite the Roman adage that ” the voice of the people is the voice of God.” But is it possible that social discourse, however disorderly, can constitute the voice of God?. How can it be, when most citizens perceive that elections are rigged hopelessly and the Electoral Commission announces fraudulent figures as the voice of the people? Isn’t it sacrilegious to associate the Holy God with fraud?
Surely God must be having fun watching and listening to the endless quest for His voice. He must be amused at the tragic ignorance of mistaking God for Godot. Poor souls! We just keep praying and waiting in despair, while God keeps silent in His overwhelmingly majestic mystery.
Prof. Terhemba Shija contributed this piece from Abuja, Nigeria.