A popular quote says: “The only thing that does not change is change”. This means there will always be change and nothing can stop change from happening. Change is ideally a process of becoming better; a better person, a better nation, a better world. When you think of the changes that have happened in different areas of your own life, you will attest to the fact that indeed “No condition is permanent.”
It takes courage to desire real change. Real change is here defined as a different situation of things or circumstances that force or challenge a person to do things differently (hopefully) FOR THE BETTER. It is a process of bringing into reality the best there could be. This is not about change for the sake of change, or change just to spite someone or a group of people, or change in order to put in place instruments or structures that favour selfish motives. Every proposed change need to be discerned and scrutinized for objectivity and altruistic motives.
Even a change in body size could keep one healthier
On a personal level, change is a process of becoming one’s best. This means exploring and maximizing good opportunities so as to fully achieve one’s destiny and potentials. Many are today using their careers, professions, expertise, knowledge, gifts, talents, power and position to extort money, exploit the young, oppress the weak and the poor, marginalize the less privileged, and amass wealth (for generations to come) thereby depriving the poor masses of resources, today.
Each individual can choose to change for the better, get complacent or become worse. If you choose to become better, then the process of becoming the best you can be requires that you explore your talents, identify your gifts and positive tendencies/inclinations and utilize opportunities. All these need to be exhibited in genuine service to humanity. On the other hand, a person may remain complacent or make no effort at developing him/herself. So, instead of becoming a more responsible and patriotic citizen, one may be contributing to the moral depravity, decadence, abject poverty and crime prevalent in society. Real change abhors any self-defeating status quo.
“Every individual, community and nation needs to keep undergoing a real process of change; gradual transformation.”
Indeed, every community and country needs to keep undergoing real change, a gradual transformation. This change may or may not require changing an administration or leadership. A country like Singapore, which was once a developing country like ours, has in a matter of a few decades, transformed itself into a first world (developed) country. Through focused leadership, determination and the will to do what is right for the common good, Singapore has undergone real change and has evolved into an economic power house. Again, every proposed change needs to be discerned and scrutinized.
In the face of every election, many Nigerians clamour for change. However, what kind of change? Is it change just for the sake of it? Do you campaign for change because the present government or administration did not give you, personally, the opportunity to amass wealth and to satisfy other selfish goals? Or do you long for change that answers to the needs of the masses and caters to the common good? Would it be change that bears at heart the needs and concerns of the less privileged, the vulnerable and those displaced as a result of terrorism and natural disasters?
On the level of political parties, we see a lot of inter-party change. For instance, someone who was once a die-hard member of a certain party and who spoke vehemently against the government of the day becomes a spokesperson for the same government, or vice versa. Such movements and change are very common in politics, especially towards elections periods. When politicians make such moves/changes, one wonders what their true motives are. Are these politicians genuinely concerned about the affairs of the country or are they concerned about their ego, selfish motives and greed? No one sees the heart except God. These individuals, like everyone else, will stand before God and answer for their actions.
“We need change that transforms the lives of the poor, needy, vulnerable,
less-privileged, physically challenged and weak in society.”
African countries, if they must attain high levels of development, need to embark on an honest journey of change. Politically, these countries need to work genuinely towards consolidating the practice of democracy. This includes free and fair elections and even further, fulfilling the promises made during campaigns; promises to deliver on infrastructure; to uplift education from its current dungeon; create access to education for all; provide regular and constant power supply; create enabling environment for new businesses to flourish; agricultural sector to thrive to its fullest; create a level playing field and more opportunities for women to have more influence in decisions that affect them politically and economically; and ensure security of lives and property. There also need to be good, responsible, transparent governance based on accountability; a government that makes the concerns and development of the youth a high priority; as well as other dividends of democracy.
African countries also have to be in a steady journey of socio-economic transformation. The lion share of wealth and resources cannot continue to be just in the hands of only a few. A process of change needs to be underway to help bridge the gap between the rich and the poor and also enable young people have a claim over their own destinies.
Countries of the world go through lots of changes in the path of development and in strengthening the processes and structures of democracy. As a country tries to go along this path, there are enemies of progress, and obstacles arise in the course of the necessary changes that must take place. These hindrances must be clearly identified and surmounted.
Human beings sometimes tend to be more comfortable with that with which they are more familiar. So, why then is change necessary? People may be more at home with the status quo, but a voice calling for change may arise because of the dynamic nature of the human society. People are also aware that things can be better than what they are at the moment. Besides, it is said that the biggest room in the world is the room for improvement. In all aspects of life, there has to be continuous improvement, continuous change.
Even relationships experience change. This can be seen in marriages and in friendships. What happens to a couple who were so much in love, but today can barely stand each other? Or someone whom you despised turns out to be a great friend. The dynamics of change may go either way at any time. This greatly depends on the choices that are made.
Change does not just happen. Rather, choices and decisions made allow change to happen. The type of choices and decisions made also determine and influence the nature of change. The expectation is that any worthy change would always be for the better.
Every individual, every community, every society, and nation need continuous change. This is because so much can be done by humans so as to achieve a better world where love reigns rather than hatred, where peace reign rather than violence, where compassion and empathy thrives over oppression and exploitation of the poor, needy and less privileged, where leadership that transforms lives is the in-thing rather than selfishness and greed for power and wealth acquisition.
“I am a work in progress; God is not done with me yet!”
Following a quote from the Christian bible, Philippians 1:6, you do have the liberty to declare: “I am a work in progress; God is not done with me yet” or “Keep calm and be patient with me. God’s not finished with me.”
Certainly, you are in the process of becoming what God destined you to be. You are then obliged to be true to yourself, have oneness of intent in all you do, avoid deception, shortcuts and fraudulent practices. You are equally obliged to have self-respect in your use of words as you address others. You should explore your talents and gifts, and believe that you can achieve your potentials and destiny in life. We all must keep striving towards promoting these values in our personal lives and exemplifying it to others.
Change is indeed a work in progress.
Rather than spend lots of energy criticizing what others are doing, let’s be reminded:
“Be the change you want to see!”
- Linda Ellah