Destiny is the sound of someone calling your name. That silent knock on your door, or that heavy pounding in your head. It is the sound of your own heart beat, beating at twice its normal rate. It is the feeling you get when someone confirms something that you have already thought about, or something you are already thinking. It is what happens when you meet someone, and you know instantly that meeting that person was all a part of the master plan of the universe, which already existed before you were born. But if destiny is something that will eventually take place, who should take the first step?
Mandela: His Painful First Steps
Long before he received his more than one hundred awards which include the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993, Nelson Rohlilahla Mandela took the first step against apartheid in South Africa. Pretend for a moment that you are in the same place as he was, right there looking on at the various unbalanced scales in your country. Would you decide to speak out? What if no one else is on your team and you are the only one with the vision? Would you still decide to take the risk? Just like Rome was not built in a day, Mandela's Nobel peace prize was not attained in one night. It took him years of learning about Mahatma Ghandi and emulating his principles; it took an arrest in December 1956 for treason; it took years of a non-violent approach in resisting apartheid, of course until the Sharpville Massacre where he decided to go through the violent route of protesting (several acts of sabotage); it took one very bold statement in which he said, "If need be, [the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities] is an ideal for which I am prepared to die."
Not too many are prepared to die...
CNN Heroes: Ordinary People, Extraordinary Steps
Anne Mahlum took her first step when she decided to start running with homeless men every morning, as part of her "Back on My Feet" program in Philadelphia.
Liz McCartney took her first step as she made that decision to form a non-profit project to rebuild the homes of more than 120 families who were survivors of the hurricane Katrina.
Viola Vaughn took her first step in helping young girls in Kaolack, Senegal, who were initially failing in school, to learn the secrets to success and business through her "10,000 girls program."
Yohannes Gebregeorgis took his first step when he established "Ethiopia Reads," bringing free public libraries and literacy programs to thousands of Ethiopian children who lacked books and literacy.
So What Will Your Own First Step Be?
Would your first step be to think about a plan? To design a proposal for action? To participate in the Nigerians For Change group? To write about change? To create a non-profit organization? To create an awareness group? To be a role-model?
What would it take for you to actually make a move?
No plan is ever achieved without action. No great destiny came without an awareness of a sense of direction. The city of Lagos will remain the same if no one does anything about it. So will the country of Nigeria. The first step is usually painful and insecure, but your great destiny begins with that one step.
N4C may appear as an optimistic child with big visions and dreams, waiting anxiously for something out of the ordinary. But the truth is that this very second...this minute...this hour is crucial. The destiny of Nigeria is sure because we are taking the first steps today. Will you dare to take these steps with us? If your answer is "Yes," then you need to watch this space. Dream with us...let us make this a reality.