It’s a been a very warm summer morning in Lagos and having successfully maneuvered through the early morning Lagos traffic, we made it to Ikeja Airport. With check-in completed, we took our seats at the waiting lounge. The calls were soon made to board and we took our seats. Soon, the plane completed its taxing and increased speed with its nose tilted upwards. It’s take off time. As the sights of Lagos recedes from my window, I took a look at the passenger next to me and let out a long sigh. It was a sigh of relieve. The mission begins.
It’s really now that I can give greater thoughts to the new life that I was about to begin. It’s been a wonderful journey these past two decades and my complaints about the nature of my job were not much. Now I have left all these behind and am commencing on a journey. These are untested waters for me. I have fared well within the protective shelter of others. For the whole period of my working life, I have had others at the helm of the boat and was just paddling along, at the commands of the different captains. Now, I have decided to Captain my own boat, I mean ship. Sink or float, I am totally responsible.
In the almost two decades that I spent with the Company, I have grown from a young man to a matured one, with hairs almost completely grey. I have managed to remain healthy. Reasonably. I have managed to keep out of the hospital bed by the grace of God. A couple of well-meaning friends have looked at the decision that I took to exit the Company and called it wide ranging names from it being insane to utterly sacrilegious. We all see differently, depending on the lens we are looking from. From their perspective, they are right. I saw differently. I saw an opportunity.
It wasn’t a decision I arrived at lightly, it was a monumental one and the impacts are wide reaching. I started toying with this decision half a decade ago and kept on laying this before the one that has the whole world in his hands. As the years passed by, I was almost aborting the revelation but either side I turned, there seemed to be no way out of this. I am foremost a family man, before anything else. The decision was soon made easier, when the choice that faced me was between the job and the family. The past few years have not been the best for my closely knit family, we got separated across the wide divide of the oceans. Something needed to give – either the family or the job. I chose the job. This was counter-intuitive to many as they had chosen the family, in similar circumstance.
Everyone else can afford to fail, I can’t. There is too much at stake. As with all great opportunities, there are great risks. As a Christian, I have read the story of the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt. I am going over this story again and it is now making new meanings to me. Previously, I felt the Israelite were so damned stupid in desiring to return to Egypt as the LORD led them on a journey to a promised land – a land that flow of milk and honey. Well, now that the story lies closer home I can feel their pains. The assurance of good food, sheltered accommodation and opportunities that Egypt provided were more alluring than the uncertainties that the promised land offered. Simply, the old age wisdom that a bird in hand was worth more than a thousand in the bush lies in the head of the Israelites. I now fully understand the challenges with the choice that God asked these folks to make, don’t ask me how. Making it much tougher was God’s decision of revealing only in bits that part of the future glory as they needed it and not entirely at once.
But herein is the glory, if we have the revelation power to understand it. We work by faith and not by sight! If HE has said it, HE would do it. Since faith without works is dead, each day we need to take steps moving us closer to HIS will. We must work as well. No major achievement of our human specie has been accomplished in a comfort zone. While the comfort zone is always attractive and a very comfortable place to stay, there is a need to disturb the status quo, to give birth to fresh ideas. I am constantly nudged by the need to create a different future, a future for my family and I that provides financial freedom and economic security.
It is the burden of this onerous responsibility that overwhelmed me as I fly out of the city of Lagos, a city that I had called home all the years of my adulthood and is now no longer one. I am going ahead to conquer new territories and take a few hostages along. As I bid Lagos bye for now and for some season, I look forward to being warmly received at our new home. It’s a little city located on the eastern shores of the Indian Ocean, South East of Lagos. Some have described it as the most remote capital city in the world. Whatever you call it, it doesn’t matter much to me. I now call it home.
I hope in five years from now, when I hope to write a follow up to this article, I would hopefully say, it’s a worthwhile decision and well rewarding. As for Lagos, I am still deeply knitted to her fabrics, she won’t let go and neither will I. She is a vibrant African beauty with all her allures. I have made a lot of memories and friends in this city.
I plan to visit frequently and will never forget you.