Life’s lessons from Buhari’s Victory
Let me quickly list two of them upfront so they don’t get buried in words: the set-time and resilience.
After three failed attempts, General Mohammadu Buhari (GMB) is finally elected President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. And because it was the set-time, there was peace in place of war, while everything thrown at him to abort his destiny failed.
Because it was the set-time, he went into the elections with an intimidating figure of “a Movement, a Hurricane, or a Phenomenon.” He went into the elections with an unassailable image, with which even what was used against him become attractive. As the L.A. Times put it, “… ironically, it is Buhari’s stern, forbidding side that many Nigerians now admire, after decades of corruption…”
Nasir El-rufai, who is running on the APC ticket to be Governor of Kaduna State, is no doubt a confident man. But asked if he would replicate Buhari’s success at the polls in April guber elections, he quickly drew the line between himself and the big man: he called Buhari a “phenomenon,” with whom he should not be compared.
At the said-time or set-time everything works to perfection, odds are defied, prophecies of self-acclaimed clerics fail. And if they have taken monies to block their ears to God, there are left with the spiritual burden of how to spend the money that cannot be returned.
The set-time, is simply described as God’s timing, during which certain milestones in life come to fruition. Even when a promise has been made, He keeps to His timing while the individual works and pray. That is where the element of resilience kicks in. The distance between the promise and the set time, is sometimes the longest waiting period in a lifetime.
Resilience is that quality that allows some people to be knocked down by life and come back stronger than ever. Rather than letting failure overcome them and drain their resolve, they find a way to rise from the ashes.
What many psychologists refuse to add is that through it all, the individual is prepared for a bigger assignment set for him or her. Even after misfortune, resilient people are blessed with such an outlook that they are able to change course and soldier on
The Buhari model
The Buhari model defies the popular lifestyle of instant gratification, instant results or victory – the microwave lifestyle or “World Order”. Finger-snapping response, instant money, fast or instant food, travel at speed of light! If something cannot be done or achieved in a short time it is not worth doing. That is the microwave lifestyle.
God created Percy Spencer, who invented the first microwave oven after World War II from radar technology developed during the war.
But God Himself made something more powerful- the light that powers the earth. It was an instant creation (And God said, Let there be light: and there was light), yet in most things He shows that He is a process God. He turns night into dawn before daybreak; and gradually turns day, through dusk to dawn.
He makes the baby crawl before walking, and He does prepare people for positions He promises them or chooses them for. It sounds unbelievable but it took Great King David some 15 years of preparation after his anointing to be King. He was anointed as a future king when he was a young shepherd, perhaps 12-15 years old. He was anointed as King of Israel when he was thirty years old.
In our microwave world that looks like eternity. But in truth, God, who is the custodian of our Masterplan, knows when the timing is right.
The microwave attitude tends to ignore God’s process approach. Modern life has become a hurried life. We want something, we just hit a button and it is done. A vending machine lifestyle!
The negative consequences of this lifestyle are enormous. It causes imbalance in life. For example, the consumption of fast foods and substances put body and soul at risk.
Dangerously, this attitude affects our expectations. Things must be done quickly for us. No excuses. Just do it and fast too.
Most dangerously it affects our relationship with God. While leaders could be rushed, God’s timing cannot. And even though we may be able to hurry nature in some instances of fast-yielding plant varieties, any attempt to hurry God or help him puts us step out of God’s plan for us into extreme danger.
Scholars have tried to define God’s timing with the Greek word Kairos. In the New Testament kairos means “the appointed time in the purpose of God”, the time when God acts (e.g. Mark 1.15, the kairos is fulfilled).
Waiting on God’s timing could be very challenging and could even lead to doubt. The best attitude in the time of waiting is one of expectation. Once He has promised, it is no longer a matter of “if” but “when.” With faithfulness and obedience, the Kairos will definitely come. We have to submit to His choice of how and when He will act.
And when He finally acts, His provision is just the right, perfect fit. Nothing more to add or subtract! He is a perfect God. He knows what is best for us and when it is best for something to happen.