The above is not the title of my new book (although I like the sound of it). Rather, it’s going to be, for the foreseeable future, the theme of weekly writings on matters that have gripped my heart; matters surrounding life and purpose. No sweet talks. Just truth.
Today, I reflect on the shortness of life and the need to finish our race before it ends. The unexpected passing to glory of a dear saint, Pastor Bukky Onakomaiya, wife of a dear friend, Pastor Idowu Onakomaiya, fuels the flames of today’s reflections. (I invite you to read the serialised eulogy by my covenant friend, Rev. Ola Kris Akinola, who brilliantly and provokingly poured out his heart and expressed the grief many of us feel at this time of mourning). In the 1980s, Sis. Bukky and my wife attended the same secondary school. Sis. Bukky was head girl. When my family and I returned to Nigeria in 2011, we lived a few streets away from Pastor Id and Sister Bukky, and saw each other almost every other day. So, it was more than a shock to learn of her passing to glory.
Now, when someone very close exits this world, we are left with much pain and unanswered questions – pain that is not easily healed and questions that are not readily answered. Notwithstanding, life goes on, with its mixture of pain, questions and daily responsibilities. Sis. Bukky went too soon. She had unfinished business. She was only waiting for a bus that would take her home after a busy day of teaching, when a car spun out of control and hit her, fatally. No, she was not ready to go. She had vision, purpose and dreams (Sis. Bukky was planning powerfully for her dear hubby’s 50th birthday, which was today 22/07/18!).
But, while the questions about the timing and manner of Pastor Bukky’s passing remains, perhaps it is worth considering that heaven may have been more prepared to receive her than we were to lose her. Did God not know about the impending danger? Why did He not avert it? More unanswered questions. Surely, heaven was prepared because irrespective of how we view it, Pastor’s Bukky’s race was complete. She was done. Once you are gone, you are done! Space will not permit me to list all that this dear sister WAS and DID whilst on this side of eternity (again, read my Rev. Ola Kris Akinola’s writings when you can).
When dear, known saints transition to glory and leave us behind, I reflect on their race and find myself committing afresh to MY race. Truth is, they pass on a baton of purpose to us and join the cloud of heavenly witnesses cheering us on the race tracks of life. These were my reflections when my dear friend Pastor Tunde Ogunmoyela went to be with Lord (oh how dedicatedly his wife and my friend, Pastor Gloria Bolanle Eldad, has run and is still running with the baton that he passed on to her). What about the precious saint, Ronke Sanusi? Oh, she touched me so! I’m just glad I was able to publish her book, FROM TRASH TO TREASURE, before she went to be with the Lord. And Carl Hewson? What a legacy of service and dedication he left behind at the young age of 27! And Oluwole Owojori? The sound of his laughter still rings in the heart. These and many others have finished their race. We now have to double up on ours and remain fixated on the prize ahead.
Remember, once you are gone, you are done. So, get busy with the things you need to get done before you go. I speak to myself as well.