I once was in the car with my husband – he had picked me up after work.
We stopped somewhere to get something and I found random people smiling at me and saying hi.
People I had not met before.
This was a little strange because Bekee normally does not smile at and greet people they do not know. People just mind their business.
So I kept wondering why I was getting so much attention till I looked down my chest to see my stethoscope still hanging there.
Ewo! They were greeting doctor.
As onye ihere m bu, I just quickly removed my steth and soon enough, the attention stopped.
This happens everywhere on earth, by the way.
Doctors generally attract respect wherever they find themselves.
When I had my daughter, I refused to tell anyone I was a doctor. None of the nurses knew until after the delivery.
Why? Because I wanted them to relax and do their jobs without panic.
Suffice it to say that the moment I said something technical after Adaeze was born and the midwife asked if I was medical and I said yes, trepidation took over.
So, why are doctors revered all over the world?
One because of the kind of work they do.
A doctor can literally have your life in his hands – just a signature away.
Two because there is a standard of moral excellence expected of doctors.
In the U.K. for instance, you could have your name erased from the medical register for lying to a police officer about a parking ticket.
Some other person could do that and get away with it. Not you.
Go and get drunk and fight in a beer parlour and have your licence dancing under the sword of Damocles. No joking here.
Because you are bringing the profession into disrepute.
It is assumed that a doctor does not represent himself alone, but the entire profession.
That is why you have to be a self-respecting human being at all times.
Where am I going, people of God?
As a child of the Most High, understand that you are representing the entirety of the Christian faith, wherever you find yourself.
And a certain standard is expected of you.
Be thou an example of the believers, says the scriptures.
What’s your personality on social media? The inspirational one or the slay mama, queen of shade, foul mouthed tufiakwa?
Can you be trusted with money?
Could someone leave you with a thousand dollars and be absolutely certain that that money will be safe?
Can your wife travel for a business meeting and be sure as day and night that you would be faithful to your wedding vows?
Are you a truthful friend? Or the shady bendy-bendy one?
What do you do with information passed to you in confidence?
Have you got itchy lips? Asiri gbaka ute, e duu n’ala na-agba na-aga.
Every story in the neighbourhood must pass through your dormot.
Is that you?
If you must hang that steth on your neck, dear Christian, then you MUST live right.
You must examine yourself on a daily basis and ensure that your walk is holy.
You must pray.
Oh! You must pray.
You must study the word.
Day in, day out.
And you must be in fellowship with others.
You are called to live right.
So live right.
Thank you for reading.
PS: Igbo words interpreted below.
1. Onye ihere m bu: The shy person that I am.
2. Asiri gbaka ute..: When gossip tears the mat, we sit on the floor to continue gossiping.
3. Tufiakwa: Reprehensible.