Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Thursday, February 28, 2013
A Bike ride with Jesus.
Seeing the Headline you might think that I am a big time biker but that isn’t the truth. I love riding bikes but never got a chance to go for a long ride.
Recently my team at office decided go for a short drive after work to a café coffee day which is located some 55 kms away from our office. I was excited about the ride. I fueled up my bike so that it doesn’t stop anywhere, checked my tyre pressure for a smooth ride, had my jacket and helmet ready … with lot of enthusiasm I was geared up my ride. It was a neat highway for a good ride.
Usually bike rides are not that easy. You have to be wide awake and watching. You can come across lot of hindrances, like a speed breaker or a man hole or even potholes on bad roads. If you aren’t careful, you may even lose your life. But this ride on the highway was different. During the ride I realized life is something like a bike ride. You will go through lot of struggles but the point is to hold on to Christ to have a safe ride.
I shall explain you out of personal experience how God really leads you to a better place in your life journey. When you are out for a bike you cannot always expect that road should be smooth without any hindrance. The worst roads are where you may have to slow down ride properly so that you don’t fall off your bike.
I am here to share how my life journey, I came out of college with 7 arrears not knowing what my future is going to be. At that time God blessed me with a call center job. I thanked him for the blessing but a few years of night shifts and it ruins your health. You miss out on many occasions. You are separated from normal world. You sleep when the world works and you work when the rest of the world sleeps. After working for 3.5 years, I needed a break. It is a good to take breaks even during your bike ride to rejuvenate. You will take breaks because you are tired or sleepy or because you feel you are done.
During the ‘break’, I was preparing for MBA and applied in different B-Schools. I didn’t get through any one of them. I was disappointed and asked the Lord for direction. After few months, he leads me to three months School of Mission in Bangalore. I happily quit my job and did my School of Mission, came back home after 3 months looking for job. This time, I was sure that I will take only a day shift job and not a call center work. I was in job search for more than 3 months but nothing clicked. During this time, I get a call from an Investment firm. I just went just for the sake of attending an interview. I didn’t want my parents to worry about me.
The moment I entered that office I felt peace in my heart as if I had already got the job. I cleared my interview and got placed in Bangalore. The firm was an amazing place to work but again it’s was night shift job. I was praying- Lord, I need a day shift. We have a process in most of the companies called IJP (Internal Job Posting) which is; once I complete 18 months with this company I can start look for a different role within the company to grow and move up in my career. I completed my 18 months in September last year and come October, I started applying for different position which I felt would work for me. Nothing happened. I started to feel anxious again. How long am I going to be stuck in this night shift! I remember it was 7th February 2013 afternoon. I was in my room, frustrated, irritated, lost my hope. I was literally shouting at Jesus asking what has he destined for my life… then I finally said- Lord, I surrender. A miracle happened that same day. I logged into my system and I get an email from a unknown employee saying that there is some problem with my profile in IJP site. Whatever I had applied to all those days was not visible to the HR. He deleted my profile on the system and I had to recreate. The next day, I applied for a position software engg. Then few days later, I was called for a face to face interview. They were looking for a person who knew coding and scripting and I have no experience in that field and no idea how to code. I thought that I was not getting this role but I thanked Jesus that he took me till the interview stage. After few hours, the interviewer called me saying that I was technically a nobody since I didn’t know coding but he liked my attitude and will give positive feedback to the manager. After a little while, I get a call from the manager telling me that he had sent an email to the HR accepting me and said that after an half hour I would get a call from the HR. After a few minutes I get a confirmation email from my HR saying that I am selected for the new role software Engineer, I was in awe! Totally surprised and speechless at what God did for me. Within a weeks’ time, he made me attend an interview and helps me get through it too… Praise God!.. That’s how God works. He works in unimaginable ways. He has his own time for everything. The new role functions in the day shift. Man! I was waiting for this for the past 5 years. I can’t imagine how I got a role without any experience of a software engineer. He makes all things beautiful in his time.
Our life is like the bike ride, when you get exhausted on the way you look for a Coffee Day and relax for a while, and maybe you feel this is what you were looking for all the way. But we, as Christians have to continue the ride trusting in Jesus. Our whole life is a something-like-a bike ride with Jesus. You will face a lot of speed breakers, bad roads and what-not but if you are passionate about the ride; whatever barriers may come in the way, Jesus will ride with us to reach the eternity.
Saturday, October 20, 2012
I must confess that I am slow writer :-) . And you know what!!! I recently found out the secret ingredient (stealing it from my fav movie kungfu panda) to live happy life.
I guess few weeks ago, probably last month, I happened to meet my parish priest; a wise old man in his 70’s. we were talking about the climate of Bangalore and I was telling about the drastic changes happening to the weather. He then mentioned that he is to travel to his hometown, Kerala for HIS Dad’s Death anniversary. His dad had died at the age of 105. Great, right! When he had turned 103, the whole family, and his friends celebrated his birthday with a beautiful mass and big fat lunch spread. Everyone on that day had just one question in their mind. What was his secret of living so long? He simply answered with a smile, that he never worried for anything in his life. He had great faith in Jesus and that in any situation Jesus would there for his support. Even the moment when he had difficult situations he never worried. He happily accepted those difficult moments and he was able to endure it with the power of Christ. Truly a beautiful testimony. It did make an impact on me.
Throughout the day I was thinking about this and looking at how I react when I go through trials, when I feel low, when I am humiliated. First question which comes to my mind then is why did God allowed this, why am I going through struggles. One thing which I understood from the life of the priest’s father is that he accepted Jesus and he surrendered his life to Jesus. Even Jesus’s life wasn't full of fun and joy but he went through rejection, humiliation, accusation, whatnot. We all know how he died. When I say I have accepted Jesus, I wondered at how I reacted through my times of pain, humiliation, and suffering? Kept questioning him on why did he allowed this and where did he go without helping me out. Christianity itself is a calling for a sacrifice, dying to self, loving unconditionally. Jesus says that want to follow me, take up your cross and follow. We say, ‘Yes! Yes! Lord’ and the moment we get a cross we start grumbling, because all we want is blessings from Jesus but we run away from cross. It’s like you want the treasure but you will not dig the ground to take the treasure out.
In my previous blog- I am true vine, I have mentioned that suffering is part of Christian life though technically its pruning. You have to be pruned to give more fruit. I am reminded some of favorite passages Jeremiah 17: 7-8 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
Very strong and clear, we should be like a tree rooted in Jesus. True faith is that we bear fruit in any season. Even in the season of suffering and pain. Another scripture which I remember very often is Sirach 39 : 17-18,33-34 “ For now, we must not question what God has done, but he has set a time to explain everything. All the works of the Lord are good, and he will supply every need in its time. No one can say, “This is not as good as that.” for everything proves good in its appointed time.
Commanding words; if God allows something bad, it is for our good. We can’t question it or compare it. I left college with 7 arrears. I was scared and worried. Questions like will I complete my degree or not would cloud my mind. After trying hard for 2 years to clear them after with a lot of questioning- why God didn't help me; I had no other go other than to surrender my life to Jesus. I told him- Lord, this time am not going rely on my intellect or books but you. I prepared well and then a miracle happened. I passed all my papers.
That is when I understood the true surrender in Christ. Later I met lot of my friends and brothers who were going through similar situations; and I understood why Jesus allowed this struggle in my life. If I hadn't gone through the struggles I would not have understood my brother’s pain or situation. I guess I am not leading the topic elsewhere.
Finally, to live a happy life, you must hold on to Jesus even at the time of trials and humiliation. Our calling as Christians is to follow Christ and not the worries. If something is troubling you, surrender to Jesus and stay calm. You will see the miracle happening. This is called staying cool with Jesus (our best friend).
kyaaaaaaah... kyaaaaah .... Master Jesus.
kyaaaaaaah... kyaaaaah .... Master Jesus.
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Confession, as most Christians knows, it’s one of the 7 sacraments.
It is the only other sacrament which we receive through-out our life. This shows the importance of the sacrament and its need for every Christian to walk with Christ. But do we really make use of this divine healing service. How many of us go for confession just for the sake of doing it? Do we really understand the true healing presence of the Lord during confession?
Let me start with myself first. The priest says that we have to prepare ourselves for Christmas or Easter and I have known myself to rush to church at the last minute to vomit whatever comes to mind... Do you really think I felt bad about my sins? It was just another ritual for me.
Personally, I thank God for making me to understand and appreciate the grace I receive during confession. I want to write what confession does to us and how important it is. Confession it’s not just about confessing your sins, it is also a healing sacrament. During confession, your soul is washed with the power of the Holy Spirit and made whiter than snow. I am comparing it with snow because I will say it is the purest form of white. I am inspired to explain what happens during confession in lay man terms. Let’s compare our soul with a pure white shirt. I wear this nice white shirt while going out and expose it to the dust, sun and sweat. Its gets dirty, of course. But what if I am to wear the same dirty shirt the next day and the day after for long time. It will start to stink, may be the white shirt will no longer look like a white one. I will start to reek because of the filthy shirt. The shirt desperately needs a wash. I will then have it washed thoroughly making sure it gets back its former color- white. This is what happens during confession.
I have never witnessed my own baptism but I have seen baptisms were the baby is nicely dressed in a white dress, and the priest blesses the baby and wipes his head with a white cloth symbolizing that his original sin is washed away. Now, as one grows older, the soul gets exposed to all kinds of worldly things, dirtying it. Its needs a regular wash to be made whiter than snow and the washing happens during the sacrament of confession. So let’s be regular in using this divine opportunity to wash our souls, to wash it whiter than snow and to continue seeking the Kingdom of God. Amen…
Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Mark 4:26-27, 28-29 – Faith is like a seed; plant it in your heart. God gives the harvest at the appointed time.
I call myself faithful but I am not sure how strong my faith is.
I was in Trichy two weeks ago, for my cousins wedding. I happened to pick my granny from the railway station. On the way back home, the cab driver drove us into a hospital called the ‘infant Jesus hospital’ in Trichy. I had no clue why we were there. When I asked my brother, he told that on 8th Dec 2011 many ppl witnessed Mother Mary’s statue’s eyes flicker and thousands flooded to this place. The moment he told me this, I asked him if it was true. Whether it was reported to Rome? Did they approve it? Having so many questions cross my mind walked towards the grotto, knelt before the grotto and started praying, “I am not doubting your holiness or your son’s power but pls forgive me if my mind is not accepting the truth.” I sat for some time at the grotto and prayed rosary. I was looking into the face of mother Mary and wondered if I am worthy to witness any miracles.
On the way back home I was thinking, am I really rooted in faith? Why I couldn’t trust a miracle? Is it my intellect which is stopping me from believing? What is faith? Am I a fool to just trust Jesus without any doubts? When Jesus rose from the dead, every disciple believed it but Thomas, who wanted to touch and feel his wounds. We call him Doubting Thomas. He proved to the world that that Jesus had truly risen in flesh and blood. It was allowed by Jesus. It’s the touch of Christ.
Miracles and apparitions increase your faith. They help you feel his touch. In my life, I personally started to seek Jesus when I felt his divine touch healing me. Thomas had faith, but Jesus wanted to make it an everlasting faith by allowing him to touch his wounds, Miracles are faith builders. It builds you more deeply in faith. The Catholic Church is very cautious about each and every act in the Christian community. It doesn’t allow for any confusion in the Church. As the above scripture says, let’s allow faith to grow in our heart. Stop questioning or doubting God and trust him wholeheartedly. Science can answer many of your questions, but when it comes to God, science has no answer. It’s speechless…
Monday, May 14, 2012
I am the vine and you are the branches, a divine calling to bear fruit for Christ and to serve his kingdom, John 15:16. He says “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit--fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.” How blessed are we to be called the Chosen Ones!
Jesus calls everyone to abide in his love and bear fruit. Now the question we are asking is; are we really clinging to Jesus to bear fruit for him. If you read the whole chapter, Jesus sends a friend request to everyone (like Jesus was the one who started social networking). He invites everyone to be his friend, to start a new relationship, a new covenant. He made a new law, a new commandment. It is a simplified version of the Ten Commandments. John 15 : 12-13, “this is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you, no one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
He calls us friends! He freed us from slavery by sacrificing himself on the cross. The only cost for us to avail his sacrifice is to remain in his love and to follow his commandments. To follow this one commandment means that you will fulfill all the other nine commandments. Simple as that! Loving others as Jesus loved me is the greatest challenge I have in my life. Do I really die to myself when someone accuses me and I retaliate? Am I really abiding in his love? Do I reflect his love to my fellow brothers and sisters? Think about it!
This term, vine is used in most part of the Old Testament. Vine represents the People of God or People of Israel. Jesus says “I am the true Vine”. He reveals that he is the new Israel. He is the Light and He is the True Vine. Ah! I should not forget about the pruning part. That’s more important here. Abba father is the Gardener and his work is to prune us to bear the best fruit. Now this pruning can be in different forms. It is physical, mental and financial. The more your pruned the more you will bear fruit. Most of time we, religious say to ourselves I go for everyday mass, I am living a good sacramental life, but when we face any difficulty in life we start to question God- why am I going through this?
I remember putting this question to my spiritual friends. Does God test our faith? Most of them said- no, he doesn’t. I wasn’t convinced but term 'test' itself is incorrect. It is pruning. If you’re abiding in Christ love, you will be pruned to bear fruit. Sometimes pruning is painful, but it is fruitful. I remember this scripture, Matt 16:24, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me”. Therefore, “Take up your cross and follow Me” means being willing to die in order to follow Jesus. This is called “dying to self”. It’s a call to absolute surrender. Each time Jesus commanded cross bearing, he said, “for whoever wants to save his life, will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it. What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit his very self?” (Luke 9:24-25).
Although the call is tough, the reward is priceless. Let us abide his love and bear much fruit for his Glory. And don’t forget to the accept the friendship request from Jesus (your true friend (vine))
Monday, May 7, 2012
Hey guys! I have become uncle for the 2nd time. All Glory to the Lord Jesus for adding another baby to our family. This is my sisters 2nd baby, and happiest part is that it is a Girl. The whole of yesterday (April 16th 2012) I was in the hospital with my sister and I could see many people waiting for their babies, with a lot of anxiety, expectation, not knowing if it’s going to be a girl or boy. I saw many chanting prayers, whether it may be either Christian, Muslim, or Hindu. They were waiting for a new creation, a new member to their family. What an miraculous creation of God that women are blessed with the gift of motherhood. They are co-creators with God.
As I am writing this, I am looking at innocent face of my 2nd niece. What a blessing to have babies at home. I wish I were a baby now. But I wonder how do people kill babies? How do they have a heart to kill them? I can’t imagine how mothers abort those souls. How many of us pray for stopping abortion? In addition, I was observing at the hospital yesterday that everyone was hoping for a boy. I am not sure about other countries, but in India there is huge discrimination of sex. I have read in newspapers that a 1 day old baby was thrown into garbage just because it was a baby girl. How cruel they are? Heartless humans! Why is a girl child considered less. Women are achieving more than men now a days. Women are working in every field of commerce and technology as men are.
In my perspective, if a mom or a mother-in-law says they don’t want a baby girl, they are murderers. They are not worth having in this world. They don’t deserve to be called womens. They are equal to being a terrorist. This clearly shows they don’t accept their own sex. These days as fertility centres are increasing worldwide, they now have a choice to choose what kind of baby they want. Who is the creator here? God or human beings.
That is a question that everybody has to answer? The science which transforms God's creation will not last long.
One more thing. If a women gives birth to baby Girl and that child is not accepted or loved by her own parents, grandparents, siblings; just imagine the state of her soul. It longs for love, this leads the poor soul to seek love in numerous wrong ways. Jesus calls us to love everyone, not to recreate or reprogram what he has already destined for us. If we are saying it is scientific development, then let’s remember that the doors of Hell is always open for us.
This is my humble request; let’s pray to prevent abortion. Let less souls to be destroyed. L
Monday, March 19, 2012
It’s a nice shot right…. Obviously shot by me… it was a while ago that I had taken this shot..................
Monday, March 12, 2012
This was the reading this Saturday’s mass (march 10th) …. About the prodigal son… the whole day I was contemplating on the reading… why is that we always think about the son who went away, enjoyed his life and came back with nothing… but I focused on the elder son who was always with his father , so obedient, just like a slave…. Why is that we forget this elder son… we must think about the elder son as close as the younger one. …. You know the story well… younger son takes away his share of property, goes to the true world(manipulated as true), free from his father’s hands… wat a joy to be free… when there is no one to question you… its actually fun… this son goes out looking for fun, love.. Etc.. It continues… he realizes that there is no more pig’s food (just for laughs) decides to get back to his father which is a hard decision to make, no other go, it needs of lot of humility, courage to face his father. This father knowing that his son will come back, waiting for him with lot of love… this eldest son, being same always under the fathers feet, just fulfilling his fathers will, gets angry when his dad opens up a party of his son’s returning… second even though goes worldly, knowing that his father loves him, comes back, but this elder son being always with his father, fail's to realise his father’s compassionate love… this whole parable is about the love of the father.. in this both the son’s failed to understand the love of the father. We may be a prodigal son or daughter , or even a obedient son or daughter, but how much we have allowed the love of God to penetrate in our life… knowing that he loves us so much, how much do we reflect his love to others. Let’s think about this, do we have any un- forgiveness towards others? Come on friends let dwell in the loving presence of our lord. Jesus loves you all.
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
I will say this is a late reflection, Today morning as I was in chapel suddenly this incident comes out of my memory, Reflection is all about how important is to hold on to JESUS to Reach the FATHER as the scriptures says No One Comes To the Father, But Through Me: John 14:6. I and my family went for a pilgrimage to Velankanni in Nagapattinam , one of the HOLY places of Mother Mary’s apparitions. We go every year to this holy place. After evening mass, we generally walk towards a place where mother Mary appeared to a lame boy, and we say rosary or contemplate on way of the cross, this place is always crowded, in this midst of the crowd my dad noticed a small kid hardly 4 yrs old crying missing his parents, my dad asked me to carry this kid, I took him, I asked his what’s your name, he couldn’t speak also he was scared, he was holding me so tight, we took him to the security guy to keep the boy safe there as the place crowded and its hard to find his parents. But that boy did not want get away from me, I told him see Jesus is there with you , MAMA Mary is with you, am not sure whether he understands me, tried to convince him but he is not ready let me go, we waited there for sometime hoping his parents will search for him. We asked the security personal to announce it in the mic, after sometime the parents came and took the kid. I felt happy that I was able to hand over him to his parents. As we walk towards our spiritual life its very important to Hold on tight to Jesus other wise we will be lost in the world as the lost child, as we know Jesus is only way to reach the Abba Father, we should hold him in every situation, we may be distracted with many things which is taking away from JESUS, just imagine, if that kid was taken away by someone who may misuse or abuse him. Its possible in this world we brought up as Christians get lost in worldly pleasures one day we realize that we have taken wrong path we are like a LOST child. Don’t forget Jesus is always there for our Rescue. We belong to Jesus and Satan tries to manipulate many things in our lives offering APPLE’S in our life finally deceiving us. Lets Identify JESUS in our lives, How close we relate to him, How much time we spend with him, Do we really follow him?. JESUS LOVES YOU ALL. HOLD ON TO JESUS.