Abiding Grace: Finding Hope amidst Uncertainty

Uncertainty, undeniably, is one of the ingredients in the walk of life.  It happened for a reason, may be.

My son just came back from school.  As usual, I enquired as to what they did at school.  They played and they enjoyed, which was good.  When we sent our children to school, we want them to learn something.  If their progress can be seen, we become happier.  Anyways, it doesn’t happen that way, always.

My Son doing his homework
Children; Writing practice

Some worksheets, they brought along, to be done at home.  At times, children simply didn’t follow our instructions.  And we forget they are just starting.  As a parent, we are uncertain about their future.  Parenting was never easy – you get discouraged one minute, you get happy with full of hope the other time.

Imparting knowledge, for some of us, isn’t easy.  That’s why we sent them to school, to get help while we raised them.  We want our children to blossom into stars.  However, several rounds of ‘test of patience’ needed to overcome first.  Amidst that uncertainty, we have hope when we rested the matter in God’s Abiding Grace.

investments calculation
Calculating Investments

Investments, in all its forms, had an uncertain future.  The sales person feed us good return for every policy or investment plans.  It is their job; they are trained for that purpose only.  It is us, the investors, who got stuck, if it goes awry.  We might not reap the fruit in time.

Like others, in our pursuit of happiness, we tend to invest amidst uncertainty.  We must take a risk yet it can take us into bondage.  Being unable to get rid of any investments due to unforeseen reasons is also hard to bear.  Yet, in His abiding grace, we have hope that at least we might be delivered in time.  In any type of the outcome, God’s grace is behind what led us till today.

Emptiness seen glass
Empty glass

Emptiness, inside the heart, can eat up our body too.  Several times, when I wanted to commune with God, it seems God was far away today.  When our emptiness is not filled by the Holy Spirit, it is as good as a half-dead person.  When the cup is not filled, we have nothing to offer our surroundings.  In this time of uncertainty, God’s abiding grace still abided with us although we did not feel it.

We wanted to perform good things yet we ended up doing bad things.  Without His grace not a soul will live.  Waiting silently to transform us, to fill us again, will give us hope amidst this uncertainty – the dilemma or unpredictability.

When we’re let down or we felt let down beyond our normal living, it is more difficult.  In the evening, as usual, we go out to spend time in a park nearby.  My children, in their prime, were active.  They wanted to play with me.  At times, I am unable to play with them as much as they wanted.  It isn’t easy to be in that condition.

Playing with Children in the park
Playing with Children

For every person, I hope, it is our dream to spent time with, play with our children till they get bored.  It was uncertain when would Daddy get fully fit to play with them into their hearts contentment.  Yet you don’t want to let them know of all your difficulties.  It is their happiness that comes first.  Time and again, it is my duty to give them hope and assured them of His abiding grace.  One thing is certain amidst all uncertainty, Jesus Christ died for us.  He set the path right for all of us.

Let me end herewith that in every sphere of uncertainty in our walk of life, God’s grace is abiding.  He did all the necessities unseen to our earthly eyes.  It’s just that we didn’t observe God’s work or might be ignoring it.

Let’s try to make uncertainty be just a phase in our journey.

Abiding Grace: Words for the Soul

Why do we study?  Simple answer could be; we study so that we may gain knowledge.  Employment is the byproduct of that knowledge.

All employed persons are not learned and all unemployed persons have no less knowledge either.  How our learning has shaped us, as a person, is what matters.


Word by word, we learn how to read.  While reading we study, which is a part of our learning.  We learn to upgrade our thought, to shape our mind, and bring about change in our society, in the least.

There are words that are all-powerful; the Words of God.  His words are filled with love, mercy, and grace for every soul.  Powerful beyond imagination; to the saved and unsaved souls, even in their dilapidated state.

Studying the Holy Bible
Studying Words for the soul

Theologians study the word of God to get better understanding of the Words, which would eventually bring them closer to God.  Yet not all theologians are filled by the Holy Spirit in their search for His fillings.  It is open to one and for all.


In one bout of my Status Epilepticus; I came to witnessed how powerful His words are!  In my semi-conscious state, I was told, somehow, I was uttering words, which would not have happened in my fully conscious state.  And I had difficulty in recalling them.

During my ICU (Intensive Care Unit) stay, God’s presence visited us in the form of His words.  For some days, I was unable to have clear thought of anything and I could hardly recall what was really happening.  In that moment, hope came alive in the comfort of His words.

Several Bible verses came into my mind in time, which I told my wife or my attendants to read it out for me.  Those verses came at the right time and served it right for what was most needed.  Unfortunately, I am unable to recall all the verses in detail.

One after another, the verses came: the Name of the Book, Chapter, and Verses in detail.  I was so ‘blessed’ to study the Holy Bible several times in my normal condition, before I could even think this is bound to happen.

Just in time, came the verses like a flash of light.  I listened to the word of God, which give me hope even in my worst physical condition.  With great hope and assurance, I can slept peacefully again and again, in His words.  Some of the verses I could still remember are from; Lamentations 3:22-25, Ezekiel 37, Psalms 91 and many more.


Here I wanted to emphasize that even when our Brain do not function properly, our God has till provided His words of hope to the soul.  So I am urging you to study and thrive on the Word of God, which would keep you going beyond the thought of human.

His word is a living word and He is also the living God.  When flashbacks of our life happen before us, we will need it the most.  So when we have time let us read, study and learn, as the school students learned, from word to word.  It will serve us good.

Word for every soul, laid bare to all of us in His flesh, during those earthly journey for a short span of time.  Let us study, meditate, and learn from the Word of God – the Holy Bible.  So that even in our most unwelcomed abnormal conditions, our mind might still pick up God’s word from the scrap of our memories, for our comfort.  Rather than studying other words, which might simply haunt us.

It’s only words, some may say, but it’s all powerful.  And His words will drag us closer to Him in His abiding grace.

Words; powerful enough to build a new relation with the Almighty!

 

How do You Want to be Remembered?

At some extent, we thought, the answer to this question lies in our hand.

In our walk of life, we left behind a mark somewhere somehow.  Some are co-incidental; some are very much uncalled for, while some are a result of many thoughts put into action.  Some will remember us, even in that tiniest way, we met.

Walking and engaged in personal activity
Walk of Life

We wanted to be remembered fondly.  How much fondly and in what way?  To some certain extent we can have our say.  What others perceived about you might not be the real you.  We cannot know someone in their entirety.


Being my resignation accepted, I was called for Exit Interview in the Local Head Office of my former Employer.  (You can read the reason here)  The HR Manager deeply looked into my eyes and asked few questions.  While working in our organization, did you experience any ill-treatment?  What would you tell others about our organization?

Well, that is equivalent to – how do you know about us? I told the guy that my experience was good and I did have a good time here.    It was an emotional moment since I also thought I would work here since the age of my retirement.  During my time there, I worked as if I would be there for too long.  My performance might not be good though.

In our country getting job is hard, especially like mine – permanent appointment.  Many of us expected we’d spent our life here in the Organization.  Before I could get prepared, it was time to let go.  I don’t have the chance to build how I wanted to be remembered by colleagues, it was gone.  The same occurs to many.  So, how do you wanted to be talked about?


We have been to different places meeting certain number of people wherever we go.  Be it in the workplace or short trips.  It is natural, we wanted to leave behind a legacy or mark in this world.  Yet, what kind of legacy, would fit in here.

We are blessed to brush shoulders with different type of persons in our walk of life.   Sometimes, we thought, we knew a person.  Instant judging of a person is easily hurtful and it can cause a rift.  We remember them, only by their outward appearance or nature, during our short meetings.  It’s just our perception.

For working persons; we, change departments and office, are following orders to suit our employment.   When you are gone from your current workplace, how do you think your ex-colleagues will have to say about you?

In our journey of life, like it or not, it is bound to happen and is happening everywhere.  By being a boss somewhere, we seem to be likable to all.  But what here we are talking about the day after you got transferred.

To live with this question, all the way, might be heavy and not easy.  While exercising personal liberty, it is a good practice to fulfill, at least, some obligations.  In the long run our surroundings might enjoy our presence as we try to create a legacy.

Family and real friends will still miss our presence, even though we might not perform well.  Yet, in our short span of life, we should try to be meaningful to them.  Some people become the foundation stone for their family; spiritually and physically.

We have ‘our bad-sides’ and ‘our good-sides’ of ourselves.  As much as your good-sides, your bad-sides, which hardly surfaced out, might be beneficial to others as well.  We hurting someone can work wonders for others too.  But one thing is certain; your remembrance won’t be as sweet as you’d expected.

In our walk of life, we met many good and bad persons, we assumed.  They are bad persons because they are bad for you.  They are good persons because they are good to you.  That bad person might be very good person to others and vice versa.

Even though we tried our best, we might not be remembered in a good way.  Discouraging, isn’t it?  No, not at all.  We’ll have inner satisfaction and we’ll be contented.

Fragrance, what kind of fragrance do we want spread – fragrance of Christ or fragrance of death?  It depends on us.

In the next installment; ‘How do you want to be remembered after you are long gone?’ We’ll talk more about remembrance.

 

Please feel free to comment or discussed your thoughts.

Abiding Grace: The Joy of Creating Our Own Niche’

Leaf stucked in between
Finding niche’ in between

In His abiding grace, we are allowed to create a living zone that suited our existence here on earth.  Yet, one must noted that creating our own niche’ outside God’s abiding grace would hamper our living.

We have that place, situation, state of mind with serene beauty where we can find peace as well as conditions that suits our living.  In pursuing certain numbers of our goal, we needed to be out of our ‘comfort zone’ as well.

Although we couldn’t possess enough wisdom to create our own world, we try to create it anyways.  In His abiding grace, God has given us to live in our own comfort to the extend we wanted to stretch it very often.

We are allowed to create our own niche’ even in the workplace.  When we can our own niche we called ourselves settled, which may mean we get adjusted or people get adjusted to us.  There are some who do not want adjustments at the cost of others.

From reading newspaper to surfing the web, there are certain things to take care in life.  Each morning when we opened the newspaper, we need to decide the news articles to scan through or to give it a miss.  Reading through the hardcore crimes in detail might be harmful to some of us.

Vulgarity has different dimensions in different parts of the world.  Viewing or seeing vulgar pictures or contents is not good for the weak in mind and body.  So, some people try to be in-between; categorizing contents and pictures, by ourselves.

Criticisms are important for living.   It can help us to be a better person.  In the meantime, harsh criticisms might dampen someone’s virtue.  We all have different take or approached to critics.  It is better to be open to criticisms but we should also be careful choosing words in criticizing others.

Wealth is a major factor for divisions in life.    Poor and rich are separated by a huge gap.  In our mind, at least, we should be in-between.  Providing space for every person to flourish in this earth is a must.  The dividing society seldom yielded a welfare state.

Let me reiterated here again that in our every sphere of life; every pace of life, every level of life, every reason for our living, we can create our own niche’ in His abiding grace.  Comfort in the non-comfortable circumstances, rest in the hurried way of life, guaranteed in Hi grace.

It is a privilege to never let loose, for someone who are abided in His grace.  Never rebuke someone for not complying your view of life.  Encourage them to shine in their status achievable.

In our every way of life, we are bonded in His abiding grace.

How Do You Want to Be Remembered When You are Long Gone?

Well, this question always intrigued me. For every beginning there is an end.  We will be gone.

This is the second installment on how you wanted to be remembered. By how we response to this question, I believe, it will determine our thoughts and actions. Please, I am not trying to rob you off, of your liberty.

We wanted to be remembered fondly. How much fondly and in what way? To some certain extent we can have our say. What others may perceived about you might not be the real you. We cannot know someone in their entirety.

Number of times, I have been poised before this very question. Although I have an answer in-hand most of the time, it is a big question of life and be remembered, put in one sentence.

a dry tree trunk still standing strong
A death tree trunk: gone but standing

As stated before, your answer to this question flashes what you wanted to do with your life, your approach to life, and when you’re gone. I am not going to put my answer here either but you are free to assess after reading this piece.

If this particular question is, asked at some high level competition with huge prize, the level of answer of might be different. They would be getting the required platform for performing. Here let us put it in a lower tempo, for the ordinary living, too. Either way, we would be remembered when we are gone.

All great personalities as well as unknown people faced death. No one escape death. There will be an end to, what we called our life. Please do not take it otherwise; I am not trying to instill ‘fear’ in you. A life, worthy in the eyes of the Almighty, would be talked about with great passion. Not only remembered, it will boost the life of others too.

There will be moments in time where you’d be remembered. There are people whose life is worth studying yet all of us cannot fit in this category. Some are remembered for their good deeds, their inventions, brevity, and the likes, although in different scales.

Eulogies, some people prepared or pre-wrote their own eulogy.  It might be a good practice depending on the situation. That day when we exit this world, yet our life will be gone but talked about.  In our death anniversaries, family and friends will fondly remember us.

History can tell us that all outstanding personalities, we considered today, contributed in different manner even when they’re gone. Some uplifted evil practice into the world to serve their personal interest in their quest for power.  Yet they are remembered.

Should we want people to remember us in a deserving way, now is the time to live it out. We must pay their due tribute to those who are gone before us.

Luscious fruit, in the Garden of Eden, must be in abundant too.  Extremely abundant to satisfy, the physical need of the first couple. Yet, just one fruit, should be avoided; not even touched. The same applies in our walk of life too. You already knew it, I hope.

When the ‘evil inside us’ took hold of any situation, we do not pay heed to the consequences of our actions.  Then, who cares about when well be gone and how people will remember or talk about us. In this kind of behavior, no one will benefit from our action and our younger generations will keep on suffering.

For someone who will try to ignore or dodge this question, it might mean giving up before the end comes. We might not achieve everything though we deeply desired in our heart but it is worth a try before we’re gone.

Let me cite just one simple example: With huge respect, one who invented atom bomb or nuclear bomb to who set up Home for the Dyings, all are human.  Yet they are remembered but in different ways.

Also, to someone who runaway from responsibilities, to someone who run shelter for the homeless.  Someone who chose to beg than working hard, to someone who died due to starvation because of crop failure. Who deserved to be remembered and talk about? It is for you to decide.

Faithful till the end for the Savior, would be our sweetest remembrance, if we can live for it.

Fragrance, what kind of fragrance do we want to spread – fragrance of Christ or fragrance of death? It depends on us.

Wealth is another thing; a good name is another thing. There is one similarity; both can be earned.

Contentment in the midst of unlimited wants is another achievement worth talking about.

Fame is not everything; it is behind the reason we get fame that matters.

The list is long but let me end it here for you to continue…

 

Please feel free to comment. Your thought counts. Thank you!

Abiding Grace: Finding Joy in the Slow Pace of Life

It rained the previous night.  The soil is still wet.

After getting our boy readying up for school, I walked him to catch his school bus.  There we waited for the school bus to arrive.

A snail, we noticed, was crawling at its normal pace nearby us.  My son wanted to help the snail reached the shade of another tree, to which the slow crawler seems to be heading.

Snail crawling in wet soil
A Snail; in its slow pace of life

He insisted on helping.  But I let him understand, the possible harm we might caused to the creature, by touching it.  The mollusk soft body might get tweaked.  It might die as well.  So we wait and watch, letting the snail enjoyed his outing till it rested.

Sometimes, our journey of life gets slowed than the normal pace.  The cause varied from person to person.  Yet all the situations are either beneficial or tormentingly boring.  Nothing exciting seems to be happening.  Yet, in every pace of life, His abiding grace abided with us.

My illness; the subsequent surgeries and the recovery process, instantly slowed my pace of life too.  There are few things to get taken care of.  For some period, there are certain activities I should abstain from, if possible, including playing with my children as well driving.

In a world moving at a very fast pace, several things are being missed.  It makes one realized more of the gift of life.  It gives a good time for communion with my God.  We can be misunderstood, sometimes, and that is natural.  Although there are depressing times, blessed times are in abundant.

When we are unable to perform few daily activities, it gives a sense of displeasure.  Yet it is a good time to catch up, what has been missed, in our hurried life.  In our hurried life, we don’t have time to spend with our family, time to meditate on God’s word, time to count our blessings,  time to recall the goodness of people around us,  time to appreciate the work of our spouse, time to give thanks to God stemming out from the heart, and many more.

This kind of slower pace of life cannot be bought.  Yet it isn’t easy, and we simply couldn’t, escape on our own.  The snail cannot turn into a racer in real life.  Only in its animated characters did it turn a racer – Turbo movie.  Since my son saw it racing, he was wondering about this particular snail.  In his age, we might wonder it too.

For the snail, it is his life.  There is life even in that pace.  All paces of life are given by our God and He knows the uses.  Yet, many times, it is difficult and boring if we missed the joyous part.  For some, it might not get faster in our lifetime.  And for some, it might just be a phase.

Being immobile, to the extent we don’t wanted to, in the very much mobile world could be depressing.  The Devil might try to create space in our mind.  Some of us longed to see the outside world; to breathe untreated fresh air.  It isn’t easy to get confined even in a comfortable place.  Confining, in a hospital room and the tiny cells of prison, breaks the heart without realizing God’s abiding grace.

None will be left alone, or as an orphan.  God will give us a Helper. He will abide with us. (John 14:16)  His grace is abiding till the end of time.  In our darkest time only He can stay with us.  A ray of hope, for the hopeless, in the fading world.

Live through the slow pace of life.  There is, and there could be joy, in every pace of life by emptying ourselves to be filled in His abiding grace.

 

Please feel free to comment in the box.

Abiding Grace: The Joy of Letting Go

Our thought-process, sometimes, is beyond our control.  Our innate being has been blessed with great diversity, which altogether made up a sane being.  God’s abiding grace makes the necessary adjustments in our life.

Memories formed an important part of our living.  Memories help us retain good and bad things we came across.  We cannot simply let go of anything on our own nor can we retain memories on our own.  It seems so normal but it is not.

Another word for letting it go might be forgiveness.  Forgiveness comes from the Lord.  When we can forgive and forget, we find inner peace.  We can achieve it by being in the Lord.  The power of forgiveness works wonder in every life.

Forgetfulness, or being forgetful, is another thing which might hamper our living.  But in its normal tempo, we find rest and get a good night sleep.  Imagine your thinking process did not stop before going to sleep, it would be, and is, very tiresome.  In this context, we must be thankful to God for being forgetful.

As a normal human being, I hope, we have certain occurrence which we don’t want to let go.  It might be hurtful to us yet we don’t want to let go either.  Since all our ventures or adventures in the journey of life cannot yield good results, this kind of things happened.

Even after we have learned lessons from previous mistakes, it can still come to haunt us.  However, by being covered up in His abiding grace, we can lessen the aftereffects.   Letting it go helps us living past our dark period of life.

It is true that one can never preplan our journey of life in its minute details.  Sometimes the ‘very much’ unexpected person or occurrence, outside of our normal life, can still hurt us at the least expected time and place.  Still, this is life and we should be able to filter it and try letting it go.

Letting it Go
Letting Go

In our completely broken state, most of life’s lessons are best learned.  Let me interrupt you here: I am not saying that I’m a learned person.  Should you be saying, you’re living in your perfect world, I must agree with you too.  It is because you possess that power of letting it go under His abiding grace.

Ostensibly, the hardest part in life is letting it go of the memories of love ones who are gone way too soon.  Although they are gone, we tend to cherished them in our minds.  It is a good thing to remember them, yet it might lead to bitterness in living.  Take it all to the Lord; all will be fine in His abiding grace.  However, it should be noted that no human mind could fully understand the Lord’s way.

Try letting go without hurting them back, if someone hurts you.  Hurting back benefits none.  And it simply let our lives miserable.  By not hurting back, we seem to be a loser, but in reality, it benefitted us.  It is more closure to Christ-likeness also.

It gives us insurmountable pain, to not let go of something, which was already gone.  it also applies to something that wanted to go, yet we still want to keep it.  If it is difficult, ask God for help.  It is the most difficult part of life, especially, if it happens before we get ready.

There is power in letting go of certain bitter memories.  It can give us tremendous joy – the joy of living or the joy of letting it go.

Let me end herewith the greatest joy of letting it go:

Jesus Christ paid the price for our sins.  To one who is willing to accept that He forgives and forget his sins.  He took away our past sinful life.  We became a new creation in Him.  He let go of our, any amount of, previous transgressions!

This is the greatest Joy of Living we are bestowed through God’s abiding grace!

 

Please feel free to pour in your thoughts in the comment box.