DAY 9: LE VOYAGE…

Today makes it approximately 2 years since I first left Naija for the Caribbean; It was my first time of practically leaving the ‘known’ for the ‘unknown’. Like Father Abraham the Patriarch of Faith, I had to bid farewell (howbeit temporarily) to my Father’s house and embarked on this trip to a faraway place. I crossed several seas, forests, mountains, and valleys; found myself in unfamiliar territories among strange faces, languages and customs. I even had to try a few funny cuisines which I mostly enjoyed. It was quite an unusual experience for me.

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the journey so far...

I’m not so adventurous, I prefer the safe, known ‘comfort-zone’ to the strange, unknown & ‘unpredictable-zone’. But God had some great plans for me and in following his leading, I had to make the move. I have not since regretted that decision.

The Journey started on an interesting note, there were many delightful scenes to behold from Lagos to Johannesburg (South Africa), to Sao Paulo (Brazil), to Panama City (South America), to the Port of Spain (Trinidad & Tobago), and finally to St. Vincent & the Grenadines (SVG) where it ended. I had an amusing Experience along with a number of challenges & lessons, which I’ve summarized below:
The Length of the Journey.
It took me over 48 hours to get to SVG. There were several stop-overs and hours of waiting by the airport. Ordinarily, I would have been physically & mentally exhausted; However, the anticipation to get to my final destination gave me courage to endure all the stress. Eventually, it was worth it.

The Cross-Examination.
I experienced first-hand what lots of Nigerians face when crossing borders. It was weird when I had to be put aside for ‘special questioning’, although I was mentally unprepared, I still scaled through with ease. Life sometimes throws random tests at us…but we need not worry, if we have the faith, we will pass the test. The Just shall live by faith.

The Loneliness.
For most of the trip, I was pretty much on my own. I had no parents, siblings or friends with me. That was one of the loneliest trips I’ve taken so far. I had to fend for myself and take responsibility for things I would ordinarily have overlooked. I needed to be punctual at the departure gates, have all my traveling documents handy, go through the unending airport security and intently look after my bags. I couldn’t sleep carelessly or spend recklessly. Perhaps the toughest part of it was facing the Immigration officers…lol. That experience boosted my self-confidence by about 70%. Today, I can boldly go to any part of the world all by myself!
The Missing Luggage.
This was the most trying part of my Journey. At a particular port of entry, I wasn’t allowed to take my hand luggage into the cabin, so it was checked in. When it was time to collect it two stops later, I was told my luggage wasn’t available. I was a bit devastated because most of my essentials were there. The Journey began to look bleak. I was told to fill some forms so that the Luggage could be forwarded to my final destination in some days time. Another student-traveler like myself had a similar experience, so I tried to find some consolation.
Miraculously, my luggage was located before the next check-in. I was elated and grateful. From that minor incident, I was reassured that the eyes of God were upon me.

The four practical lessons from my story are on: PATIENCE, FAITH, ACCOUNTABILITY & TRUST. The more we apply them, the easier we find the challenges in our Journeys.
The Journey of Life comes with many phases, as one phase ends, the next phase begins. Challenges tend to arise at each phase. The trip to your promised-land may take the form of a flight, a ride or a sail…but expect your share of storms, bumps & turns. And when the Journey gets long, rough or lonely, learn to trust the  God who knows its end from its beginning. This Scripture verse gives me reassurance: ”The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot”. (Psalm 16:5)

Another profound lesson I’ve learnt is that ‘The Journey is more important than the destination’. Success is not just about getting to the finishing line, it is about overcoming each hurdle along the track. As we all continue in the different phases of our Journey: Studying, Career, Marriage, Child-rearing, Ministry etc…let us take note of the simple lessons, treasure the beautiful moments & commit the challenges to God. For after each phase, comes another & life goes on.
VOYAGE DE MON PEUPLE!!!

Requ1ne.

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Thank you for reading!

PS: I know many of you won’t like to miss tomorrow’s post by my little sister as she shares with us ‘NAUGHTINESS IN RETROSPECT’. See you then.

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6 thoughts on “DAY 9: LE VOYAGE…

  1. That was an inspiring experience NLC. Of a truth genuine trust in God takes away all life’s worries. He cares for His own even in/at the highest, deepest, nearest or the farthest geographic locations. May you forever enjoy His divine presence in all of your life encounters. Amen

  2. My “Most” favourite so far!….’twas natural,real and so inspiring…
    “life sometimes throws random tests at us…but we need not worry if we have the faith we will pass the test. The just shall live by faith”

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