Monday, April 6, 2009

60km/hr on Third Mainland Bridge


We started our journey to the Murtala Mohammed airport, Lagos. I noticed that the bus was moving slowly. I wondered why. Was the bus having problems or was the driver waiting for another vehicle or did he want to prevent his bus from being hit? I kept on wondering while we were still in Victoria Island. But when we mounted the Third Mainland Bridge and we were still at the same speed, I became very concerned. The road was free - there was no traffic jam. I looked back; the luggage bus was behind us. We were not waiting for anyone. Bikes and taxis were now overtaking us. At this point, I could not keep my concerns to myself.

“Driver, why are you driving so slowly? Do you know we have a plane to catch today?”

“Aunty Rita, I cannot drive more than 60km/hr. Is it not one oyibo man that came and said we should not drive more than 70km/hr? If I drive more than 60, I don’t know when it will enter 70 and I will be sacked as soon as I enter 70. Please allow me to drive at 60…”

While the other passengers complained about the speed and why the company had changed the speed limit, I had to keep quiet. I slowly nodded with understanding as I flashed back a few weeks.

They were not there when our bus fell into a gutter because of speed. They were not there when the bus almost crushed another vehicle because of the rough driving. No, they were not there when we remained stranded for hours in the traffic while the patrol van tried to pull us out. The expatriates just arriving Nigeria were so scared because of the exposure. I am sure they felt they could become victims of all they had heard in the news about Niger Delta.

Most times when laws are given, it is for our own good. We should not focus of the consequences of disobeying but rather understand the benefits of obeying.

I am sure this incident was in response to my inner questions such as “Why are there so many ‘Thou shalt nots’?” “Why love your enemy and forgive someone who hurt you terribly?” “Why will some things be so pleasurable yet feel or be so wrong?” Eavesdropping on the law makers in my organization, I have realized that some of the laws they made were because people lost their lives or property in some preventable incidences. Sometimes, there has been bloodshed before the laws were made. Suddenly, I had a glimpse of what God plans for us.

For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, plans to give you the future you hope for [1].

That is why He gave us His guiding principles contained in His word. And He instructs us thus, “Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do” [2].

I love the prosper and succeed part but had questioned why there is a meditate and obey part. But as I continue this journey, I have to stop questioning and obey. I pray for the day I will utter “I take joy in doing your will, my God, for your instructions are written on my heart" [3].

Have you ever wondered why there are do’s and don’ts? Why the ten commandments? Have you ever been concerned about laws? What thoughts have you come up with? For me, I am not asking again, not after realizing that “He did not put His laws to harm me or to deny me pleasure, but to protect me and give me peace”.

And I thank God for His Grace that remains with us even while we fall into temptation. However as we acknowledge that we have His grace, may we not take it for granted.

Have a blessed and fruitful week ahead.

Bible References
[1] Jeremiah 29:11 (Mixture of AMP and MSG versions)
[2] Joshua 1:8 (NLT)
[3] Psalms 40:8 (NLT)

39 comments:

JustDB said...

well said...Its hard to accept that laws are for our own benefits.. Thanks for sharing..

bumight said...

yes, most of the time we think those laws are stifling when they are there for our own good - at least most of them!

webround said...

nice. this just met me at my point of need

Olufunke said...

Laws! Laws! Laws!
God knows I hate laws!
I know most of the laws are for my good.
Thanks for this.

simeone said...

nice one rita..good reminder, i learnt some years back that to obey authority , you dont need to be comfortable with the rule..
bless you

bArOquE said...

well said...nevertheless, i cant stand slow drivers, none of mine are!

Saved Girl said...

great post, i will email you later today about your request.

THIRTY + said...

Very true if only....yet we never learn.

CaramelD said...

I try most times to follow the rules but sometimes it's VERY DIFFICULT!

Writefreak said...

Nice one! His commandments are not grievous...i wish i could totally believe that all the time!

Have a ncie week Rita!

Sprezatura said...

Thank you Rita,

blogoratti said...

Nice one!

poeticallytinted said...

Wow! Did you have me in mind? lol.

I rebel against thou shalt nots! I don't like to think of limitations. My favorite phrase is is WHY NOT?!

Enkay said...

rules sure do have a way of getting under my skin but it's mostly the case when I don't see how they're for my good.

Once the reasons for the rules are clear however, it's a lot easier to swallow.

Kafo said...

i like and even the way u threw in the thou shalt nots

have a blessed week

~Sirius~ said...

I love your new look, I must have said so before.....
It's so pretty and chic!

Down to business...
this sums it all up for me..

“He did not put His laws to harm me or to deny me pleasure, but to protect me and give me peace”

Hard as it is....this is the best choice we have in life......obeying the do's and don't.

Afrobabe said...

Nice one....

Also reminds me of when our parents said dont go out at nite...they saw more thn we saw...

seye said...

YOU SHOULD START A FOR-SEYE DEVOTIONAL! Nice inspiration!

Is it me or you changed your blog layout. Plus the YOU ARE COPYING MY LABELS widget!

fantasy queen said...

we all are guilty of grumbling over new laws and delighting in breaking the law.
i guess we really dont stop to think why the law was made in the first place.

for every DONT theres a perfectly good reason behind it.

Buttercup said...

i've wondered quite a lot myself..but this has sort of reassured me: “He did not put His laws to harm me or to deny me pleasure, but to protect me and give me peace”.

David C Brown said...

"Fear not, little flock, for it has been the good pleasure of your Father to give you the kingdom."
He gives us the kingdom to regulate us for our blessing.

StandTall-The Activist said...

At least the law are there to guide us, to make us think before we act...

Rita said...

@JustDB: I feel you cos somehow, laws come out like punishment, but most are for our own good…especially the instructions from our Heavenly Father…

@Bumight: I like your clause “at least most of them” cos sometimes people make laws to punish people…

@Webround: Thank God and thank you…

@Olufunke: I thought you were writing a poem  You’re welcome.

@Simeone: The one I never liked was “Obedience is better than sacrifice”. I was surely not comfortable with the rule. It was used to punish us a lot when we were kids. Bu when I grew up and learnt it was in the Bible, I learnt to start obeying.

@bArOquE: Now I feel like I have someone on my side. Cos after I spoke, I felt like I should not have voiced my question. It really caused a row in the bus.

@Saved Girl: Thank you…you know what for…

@THIRTY +: And there comes grace…cos if it is only us humans….one day, we will learn. Hope not too late…

@CaramelD: That you try is good enough.

@Writefreak: Thank you.

Debbie said...

Wow! just read this.
We know laws are good, but we just want to do our own things, but thank God for laws, they keep us in check.

Rita said...

@Poeticallytinted: I had you in mind when the driver was driving 60km/hr. I said, if Peoticallytinted drives at this speed, will she ever get home?

@Sprezatura: You’re so welcome…

@Blogoratti: Thank you…

@Enkay: lol @ “rules sure do have a way of getting under my skin”. Thank God you took something from this post.

@Kafo: My dear, the “thou shalt nots” used to be my major misunderstanding with the bible…

@ ~Sirius~: Say it again…Not tired of hearing you like the new look…
Thank you for pointing out that it is the best choice we have in life. I could not agree with you more.

@Afrobabe: You cant imagine how many times I quarrelled with my mother because of “don’t go out” and now I am so grateful she was there to ensure I did not disobey…

@Seye: yeah, I changed the blog’s look. Hmmm… let me think about the “For-Seye Devotional” wont be a bad idea at all. Thank you.
Oh, I copied the widgets from somewhere (not telling) but not your blog :-)

@Fantasy queen: I soo like the way you reason and analyse things…

@Buttercup: So glad it reassures you, Sweet Buttercup

@David C Brown: Surely, we all want the blessing. Thank you for your comment always full of wisdom.

@StandTall-The Activist: Can you imagine life without laws? I don’t want to think about it…

*Diane* said...

Thank you for stopping by my blog... this is definitely food for thought..

Ms. SpicyTee said...

Well Laws are meant to guide us. But most of the time,we don't wanna comply to them.
by the way,my first time here..Cool blog you've got here,love the design and hey thanks for stopping on mine.. Cheers

Telekinesys said...

'Most times when laws are given, it is for our own good. We should not focus of the consequences of disobeying but rather understand the benefits of obeying.'

I like very much.

QMoney said...

laws are good but 60km/hr on 3rd mainland on a sunday afternoon cant be fun oh.i wan sleep for road?

Afronuts said...

Like afrobabe said.

SOmetimes we dont know the good of these laws until the bad happens.

Its better to stay on the safe side of it

MissLove said...

e that bible passage Jeremiah 29:11 but omo that driver na wa!LOL

Tears said...

so true! nice post!!

Original Mgbeke said...

Rita, I just wanted to say...if I haven't said this before that I appreciate people like you on blogsville. Your posts are always so encouraging and uplifting...true talk!

Mimi said...

:) awww bless the driver.

God sets rules for us because He loves us.

Fanny said...

Whoa! Esuru! This blog is beauuuutttifullll!

As for the message i got the picture when i once heard that laws are written in blood. Meaning lives had been lost.

Thanks for sharing

naijagirl said...

thanks for this.
nice post

kay-shawn said...

Just curious, where were you travelling to?

Rita said...

@Original Mgbeke: You just made my week…thank you so much and God bless you plenty plenty…

@Debbie: Aren’t we something?

@*Diane*: You’re welcome…

@Ms. SpicyTee: Thank you and I enjoyed your posts on your blog…

@Telekinesys: Thank you

@QMoney: Hmmm…you can say that again, even learner will not drive 60km/hr on 3rd mainland…

@Afronuts: Thank you for that important message – its better to stay on the safe side…

@ MissLove: lol, it’s not the driver’s fault…

@Tears: Thank you…

@ Mimi: You couldn’t have summarized it better…Yes His laws are because He loves us. Thank you for the reminder…

@Fanny: Thank you…lost but found…Hope you're back to blogville for good...

@Naijagirl: You’re welcome…

@kay-shawn: lol…I was travelling from Lagos to Port Harcourt…

Omo Oba said...

Word! truly and truly, even as we celebrate His resurrection today, may we not take His grace for granted, all the days of our lives.