My heart bled when I heard the pathetic story of Liya Sharibu, the Dapchi school girl who was still being held back by Boko Haram  captors on the ground that she rejected Islam offered her by Infidels called Boko Haram.

My heart bled because looking back at my life as a Christian, I have not been faced with such a life-threatening circumstance yet I have failed many times. As a journalist who seeks to be upright, I do my little to be above board but when it comes to areas of doing some petty business to augment living, I fail Christ Jesus and cannot give myself a pass mark beyond 20%.

I have read several books by authors and I see how easy it is to say I stand with Christ Jesus no matter what. I remember when Jesus Christ told Peter that his faith will be tested and will fail him before the first cockcrow; Peter failed Jesus, despite the closeness but restituted.

Come to our churches today, ask the Bishops, Pastors and Deacons. Who among them can still stand for Jesus Christ at such a time like this in the hands of Boko Haram, not mere threat, five others were already dead, no one knows under which circumstance, yet Liya or call her Leah stood for Christ. I am bleeding within me that today, poverty has driven many Christians away from Jesus Christ and we accept Mamon, god of money, what a pity!

It was not Liya that came to tell her story, her mates came to testify that she stood for  Jesus Christ who died for her sins on the Cross of Calvary. I couldn’t have been a tea party in the hands of mindless captors who could be nothing but unpredictable.  She had demonstrated that life to her no meaning without Jesus Christ. I may not be there to know or hear what she has to say, but I can view in my mind’s eye that she said like Apostle Paul said Philippians 1: 21“For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” This little girl has made her choice, a stand for Christ. It is possible that Liya’s father cannot stand like she did for Christ, but she had chosen the right path. Ironically, perhaps this is a fulfillment of her destiny, to stand for Christ and die or denounces Christ and live in agony of failure and end in hellfire, only God knows best. She has announced to this generation of vipers that she is a rare being, the torchbearer for Christ

In my mind, I keep traveling throughout all our churches, asking who among our leaders can so stand for and with Christ? I cannot imagine one. Many at times like this will simply start quoting scriptures that wisdom is profitable unto directing, ‘denounce Christ over there and when you return home continue to serve your Christ’.

Liya has earned for herself I am not a status of martyrdom, whether conferred or not, because at a time like this in a perilous time in Nigeria and world at large, a gentle. A least expected soul can stand for our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ. As it is now, only to God shall all souls leave Liya’s matter to intervene, because we can do next to nothing other than praying.

We have a so-called Christian as Vice [resident at the helm of affairs, we have several others who beat Christian names. We have Senators, house of reps members, Governors and several of these beautiful names in Christianity, how are they standing for Christ Jesus in their various engagements. I remember that most of them were on their knees asking God to take them to these higher grounds and now God had done his part, how are they letting him down? Millions of souls are crying daily, lives of the elect are being lost daily in this battle of attrition, yet Children of God, assisted by God to attain public positions cannot stand for Christ or are not yet standing. Many of them have unequally being yoked with unbelievers, pagans in their offices and even when plans are made against Christians, they play diplomacy, look away from the situation and pretend that they are not concerned. Book Haram has not threatened your lives, yet you denounce Christ; you need not be told that you shall stand to face his judgment someday. Esther was a slave girl who dared death and saved her generation. Dare to lose your jobs or appointments, face the wrath of the cabals and stand with Christ. Util we see you people do so, you are a shame to the body of Christ, its better you decamp to the other religion and tell the whole world that you doubt te power of Christ and veracity of biblical claims but I am sure, not many of your political supporters will decamp with you to any other religion.

This scenario is hypothetical; a Christian is being forced to accept the Islamic religion, thank God I was not forced to accept Jesus Christ when I became a Christian from a Muslim family, it was purely on personal conviction and my love for God. I also lived with Muslims and have many as personal friends, who will not accept that a Muslim is forcing anyone to become a Muslim. It is not a Jihad. Infidels cannot be fighting a Jihad. Boko Haram had killed several people irrespective of their religious inclination, but to curry sympathy and cause disunity among Nigerians, they are bringing up the issue of religion. I have listened to the head of Islamic affairs in Nigeria, Sultan of Sokoto say categorically that Boko Haram is not Islam but a bunch of criminals who should be so addressed.  Aside this, his deputy, Professor Is’haq Olarewaju Oloyede has spoken about this several times and even express that Islam is a way of life of a people and whoever does anything to the contrary is an infidel. Oloyede is not only saying it, he acts it and we are living testimonies of his ‘himan’ or faith in his maker. His service at the University of iIorin is unparalleled and in his few years so far at JAMB office as registrar has dug to the open how Christians who managed that office before he came made Jesus Christ proud and now a Mallam is also showing what integrity is all about.

That brings us to a vital issue, INTEGRITY. Is it about religion or about self-esteem? It is on record that the first set of Boko Haram in Borno state were teachers of Islamic religion, whose way of life caught the admiration of many parents and they wished that they ward have a stint of Boko Haram teaching. However, the sons of Satan,  Politicians came and infiltrated their ranks and sowed seed of discord into a godly arrangement and now we have what is now a dreaded and rebranded version that has come to blackmail the Northerners and their religion, cashing on the fact that north is known for religious volatility and killings, this we cannot deny. However, we also know that there are sects that mastermind such mindless killings, not the regular Islamic movements which are the majority. But all the same, when things like this happen, only a few are bold among our Muslim counterparts to criticize the actions of their brothers openly. I know that there are the underground criticism of those evil acts, but it would have made more impacts if such acts are vehemently criticized.

I was with a Muslim friend this afternoon with whom was I was discussing Liya’s Issue and his first response was why can’t she accept Islam to escape the hands of these people. He also ended by saying what is wrong if she becomes a Muslim, is she not a northerner? These and several other responses in no little way encourage evil doers who hid under religious activism to perpetrate evil. The universal fact is that what is bad is bad and nothing can make it good. Is it not better to stand for Justice so that we can put an end to evil in our society, what a painful unfortunate act. Things like this limit our national growth and Wayne down patriotic zeal.

All Muslims and Christians should stand up for this Liya’s safe return. Today she is the daughter of our nation and religious sentiments should be removed and we allow unity of mind and purpose for national development.

God will see us through. Lastly, let us pray for the safe return of our daughter and sister Miss Liya Sharibu to finish what she was for created for. God will prove himself mighty over us in this as a nation.

God bless Nigeria.




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