I was scrolling through twitter the other day and saw a tweet where someone arguing some political matter said Nigeria is a secular country.
“Secular: Adjective, not connected with religious or spiritual matters.”
I wanted to tweet back and ask which Nigeria because the Nigeria I know does not fit into this definition.
Nigeria that loves God much more than other nations, or how else do you want me to explain the number of pastors, preachers, churches we have? And the way ‘God’ is pushed in your face daily.
Take my darling Lagos for example. As early as 5am, the mosque near my house starts the call for prayers, a beautiful poetic sound I love waking up to, never mind that I don’t understand what the Imam is saying, but is it okay for me to be awakened by force by a loud speaker?
Stepping out of the house at a little past 6 am, I see people dressed in white garments, ringing bells and walking on their bare feet. More than 10 (yes I count) will walk past me before I get to my bus stop, ringing their bells in my head.
And you are not safe in a bus? Almost every bus park has its resident preacher. Inside the bus where you would think ‘yay time to finally listen to music’ next thing is ‘brothers and sisters praise dah looooord’.
If I am not too late I usually get down from the bus, immediately.
Why do people think it is right to just start preaching in buses? You are paying the same fare with me so why are you disturbing me? My worst experience so far was with a man who carried a small mega phone to preach in a bus. Ah! No amount of music could block the sound from my head, and I was stuck in traffic with this guy for an hour and half.
Then there are the ones that decide that preaching is about their personal church doctrines. I was in a bus with a lady once whose preaching from beginning to end was, ‘trousers will take you to hell, they are men’s attire, bible says women should not wear men’s clothing, earrings,’ (then she quoted the passage where the Israelites made an idol with their jewellery) and continued, ‘earrings, make-up, any form of artificial beauty is taking you to hell fire.’ If only I had wings or I could disappear…
Why are we so intolerant of other people’s space? What happened to everybody stay in their lane?
On Friday nights, there are two things you can do, sleep with your ear phones or join the church nearby in their all-night prayer vigils. They will sing and shout till almost 4am on Saturday morning.
When I voice out my complaints, the reaction I get was why are you talking like that? They are doing God’s work; remember “touch not my anointed and do my prophet no harm.”