On Sunday the 3rd of June 2012, Dana Air flight 9J-992 took off from Abuja in Nigeria with 146 passengers and 7 crew members. The ill-fated flight came to an abrupt and tragic end as it crashed in a busy suburb in Lagos state, its intended destination, killing most of the passengers and crew members along with those on the ground at the time the aircraft plunged into a two-storey building.
Perhaps one of the most painful facts about this crash is that they were so close to landing at the airport. According to reports, they were only very few minutes away when the airplane developed a major technical malfunction and ended the lives of many innocent people. You will notice I am refraining from declaring that all the passengers are dead. Until this is proven on the ground, I choose not to speak death but life. Nothing is impossible for God.
Back to the issue at hand, I don’t really know where to begin. It is with a heavy heart that I write today’s post. Through the six degrees of separation, I am overly connected to so many people who lost their lives on that flight. There are too many questions to ask. There are too few answers coming forth. Fingers are already being pointed at the airline and corrupt officials who allowed that particular aircraft fly that day despite warnings from the engineers on the ground. There are all sorts of rumours jumping around the web at this point in time. The issue of corruption in Nigeria rears its ugly head once again only this time, it leaves a rather bitter taste in the mouths of many.
Perhaps one of the most tragic things about this crash is the fact that it claimed so many young people’s lives. No life is more precious than the other before God but there is something very rude and abrupt when someone quite young passes away. There’s that feeling of unfinished business that lingers. So many people attended a wedding at Abuja on saturday and some were unfortunate to fly Dana Air back to Lagos the following day.
I don’t quite know what I’m trying to achieve in writing this post but first and foremost, I would like to communicate my deepest condolences to the affected families. I am so sorry for your loss.
We live in a fallen Creation in which sorrow is inevitable. We are all either in one right now or have just experienced some sorrow or will certainly experience it at some point in the future. None can escape it in this life. The only comfort we have is that God is with us through it all. He has promised never to leave or forsake us. That hole that has been left in your heart by the loss of a loved one will be filled by the love and comfort of the Holy Spirit. He created your heart and He alone knows just what piece of the jigsaw will fit perfectly in that void.
Jesus warned us that the enemy came to kill, steal and destroy but that He Himself came to give us the abundant life. This plane crash was a rude awakening for me. I found myself asking so many questions. Am I numbering my days wisely? Am I working whilst its still day? How many people have I told about Jesus? What am I doing with the gifts He has bestowed on me? Am I too distracted by the vain things of life?
Life is a gift and we should treat every breath as such. One cannot take for granted the fact they are alive and healthy. In the grand scheme of things, many of the issues that bother us are simply not worth it. 153 people got onto a plane and expected to arrive at their destination in less than an hour. So far, over a hundred bodies have been recovered. They’ve gone on to their final destination, which is either in full fellowship with God or in His absence.
For those who will have to love and support grieving friends and family, there are a number of do’s and don’t's involved. Please avoid throwing about christianese terms like “it is well” or “it’s God’s will” or “heaven needs them more”. Just being there is enough to show them you care. If you must speak, it’s enough to acknowledge their loss. A simple “I’m deeply sorry for your loss” is enough. Let them steer the conversations and not you. Allow them grieve and go through the different stages involved. There are loads of excellent resources on this matter online. Get yourself educated and equipped to support those affected. Most of all, ask for the Holy Spirit’s help because you will need it.
We know that God works everything out together for our good. He is an infinitely good God but we do live in a fallen world that is influenced by Satan and his henchmen. Ultimately, we have the victory in Christ Jesus and though we die in the flesh, our spirits will rest with the Father where there is no more pain or tears.
Please keep the affected families in your prayers. Don’t stop at looking up their pictures online and feeling sorry for them. Go beyond that and ask the Spirit to tell you what specific prayer points each affected family will need. Some have lost their parents and will need someone to be compassionate towards them. Some have lost their breadwinner and will need financial help. Do something to help. Anything.
My question to you is simple? If you were to pass on to glory today, where would be your final destination? If you’re not certain in your heart by faith then please waste no further time. Get on your knees and invite Jesus into your heart. Make Him your Lord and Saviour and choose to live for Him from this day onwards. Thank you for reading. God bless.
- Dana Air Plane crashes in Iju-Ishaga area of Lagos…Newsfeeds (transformationwatch.com)
- Dana Air Crash kills all its passengers and crew in Lagos, Nigeria (kish.in)
- Black Sunday: Dana Air Crashes in Lagos (naijaspleen.wordpress.com)
- We Were Forced to Fly The Plane:Staff of Dana Air line speaks (luchidotcom.wordpress.com)
- Prayers for Nigeria, and all of those affected by the crash of Dana Air Flight 0992 (my52wow.com)