Sunday, May 20, 2007

For Any Adversity, There is a Miracle of Hope.

"Because the Kingdom is within you,

So too are the beauty and peace of the world you see.

The flowers and the snow,

The brush of the new wings,

The soft kiss of a parent,

All are kept safely in your heart.

Nothing has been taken from you.

Not all the seedling of promise has

perished beneath your footsteps on this earth."

By Hugh Prather, in the "Spiritual Notes to Myself."

In 1976, I graduated from the Ghana Medical School. As an intern I was given free housing but the money was paltry. By the middle of the month I was impecunious. I was frustrated. As a doctor, I had relatives looking up to me to help them. They did not know that life was a struggle for me. My father had been dead for a number of years. After one year, I decided to leave the country for Nigeria that had a booming economy, fueled by oil.

I did not know where to go in Nigeria. At that time, there was a group of Nigerian physicians who had come to Ghana to take the British postgraduate examination in general surgery. I did not know them. I approached one of them called Peter Abwa and discussed my plans with him. Peter was very encouraging and told me that his hospital, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital in Zaria, Northern Nigeria, had vacancies for residents in Obstetrics and Gynecology. He also assured me that I could join the group in 4 days to travel to Nigeria.

I went home, packed my bag, said my goodbyes and joined the Nigerian doctors in their car for Nigeria on one Friday morning. I had only about $15.00 on me. We had to pass through Lome and Cotonou before Nigeria. I had no problems in Lome. In Cotonou, the border guards asked me to go back to Ghana because I did not have a visa to enter the country. At that time all my hopes were dashed. As I walked away to join a bus to Ghana, one of the guards called me to join the group.

One of the physicians bribed the guard. The bribe was the visa they were looking for. We stayed in Lagos for one night and Peter and I boarded a bus the following morning for Zaria. I stayed with Peter for about one week before I was employed by the department of obstetrics and gynecology. I was able to buy a car and had a foreign account in London. I helped a few of my friends to come and join me at the department of obstetrics and gynecology and general surgery.

Now, if that was not a miracle, what could it be? Whenever we face an obstacle in our life, there are people ready to help. These are some of the characteristics that can help you tap into the miracle of hope:

  • Have the courage of your convictions and pursue your dreams because there are always angels ready to help you.
  • Trust your instincts and remember that sometimes you cannot control what happens to you. Just enjoy the ride and you would get to your destination.
  • Be a tough minded optimist. You cannot be an optimist without tapping into the universal spiritual energy. That unseen but ever present sword carves a path for you when you cannot see any way out of a difficult situation. Yours is to trust and let go of your instinct to control everything that happens to you, because there are many things you cannot control in your life.
  • Prepare yourself so that when the opportunity rears her head, you can recognize her and make her your ally.
  • Remember that you have to continue weaving the tapestry of knowledge, because the successes of yesterday may not be a match for today's challenges. If you sleep on the job without sharpening your skills, opportunities will pass you bye.
  • Finally, when you have been helped by someone to climb a mountain, use the knowledge acquired on your way up to help others. This is the only way we can keep the world a better place than we found it.

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