I watched my mum knitting that sweater with a beautiful design in her mind. She was almost there and something went amiss. She realised the design had gone awry. So, she had to painstakingly unknit and reknit the whole pullover. And, after all the sweat, it came out pretty well.
Setbacks will be there in life. It’s your choice how you take them and builds yourself all over again. Sometimes people, sometimes yourself, sometimes circumstances and all that you just can’t control leave you with pain, failure, and a sense of helplessness.
Setbacks leave you with pain. But, more than that they leave you with a lesson to learn from. You know where you erred. And, you will know how to avoid that in future.
Why I am saying this today? Starting Monday morning talking about setbacks?
Well! One who experiences is the right one to preach. I have had setbacks not once but many a time. One last month. And last week, I had another very big setback.
I was in tears. And, I decided that i would neither blame nor fight with anyone. It’s not worth it. I will look forward and will move ahead. I will build again. I will not waste my time on negative people and thoughts. Time is limited and I don’t know when is the last day of my life. Energy is limited too.
So, I pulled myself up today. I’m starting anew.
I encourage you all to look beyond what happened and start the Monday morn with a greater attitude.
“I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
A promise from God that is repeated in Bible several times and has been source of courage to millions. In an uncertain world and temporary relationships, where your most coveted job, your title, your partner, your children, your money and friends may leave you anytime, it is only God who sticks around you.
Never leaves you.
Doesn’t condemn you of anything why the wrongs happened in your life, why your wife left you, why your son died so young or why your father disowned you?
People will see your track record, they will see how successful you have been to judge your present and future. People and this world have their own way of looking at things.
But, the true living God will never judge you.
In fact, in the midst of your tough circumstances, He tells you, “be bold and courageous”. So what if you are ordinary. It’s been God’s style of making ordinary do extraordinary exploits.
As Josua faces the fierce enemy and battlefield, this is what God promises him, “Be strong and courageous. Do it be afraid or terrified because of them(enemies), for the Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.”
So, by now, you know that it’s really not about you.
So..”Don’t be afraid and do not be discouraged”, he commands you as you set for your brand new journey.
As the battle is not yours but His, so there is no reason to be afraid and be overwhelmed by your opposite forces – circumstances or people.
Good news is that God already has won the battle for you.
You just need to claim it.
Jesus died on the Cross nailing down with Him all the powers of darkness and made the public spectacle of Satan. Third day, He lived again only to prove you that He conquered death for you and for me. So, whosoever believed in Him shall not die but will live.
To be victorious over your dead circumstances, relationships, you just need to claim that victory by believing in your heart what Jesus did on the Cross for you and for me.
He will never leave you nor forsake you. ( Deuteronomy 31: 6)
I remember being pregnant with my children, feeling as their gentle flutters progressed into full belly flops on my bladder and painful karate kicks against the backs of my ribs. Back then I had no clue what my children would be like; they were more like ideas than real people. I’d sit in my rocking chair with my hands clasped gently over my stomach and wonder who they’d be. Dreaming of children who loved singing as much as me; envisioning singing rounds, our voices weaving together in harmony.
Then they were born. Short, chubby, bald people who looked a lot more like Winston Churchill than either their Dad or myself. People that screamed randomly, pooped on themselves, and considered “gah” to be an entire conversation. I still had no idea what they were like except loud, messy, and highly uncoordinated. They slowly evolved into their own people. Emma was colicky and had a desperate need to be…
The moment had arrived. Firecrackers in the sky, new year party songs and blasting music played on FM inside car, all indicated that it was 12:00 am, 1st January 2014.
I was still in the car driving back home with my family after a party. Then Someone said to me – “year of testing”. The dark deserted street was made lonelier with that voice. Everything became still and stopped listening for a while. Only word that rang in my ears were “year of testing”. As if I knew where they were coming from. I said, “Uh no, God. I can’t take it”. My countenance fell down and inserted thinking what would happen now.
I cancelled in my heart and slept.
But, it repeated. Next morning and another morning! Year of testing. By 3rd January I was so anxious, I called Shilpi, my friend and mentor. I was told if God was telling me about the testing times coming ahead, He would surely give me Grace and strength.
Where sin abounds more, Grace abounds even more.
Your Grace is sufficient for me.
I tell ya, I never understood the meaning of Grace so much as I know now. There are two types of knowledges – one that you learn from books, theories, and another is experiential. We call it gynosko in Hebrew.
In sports, we used to do high jumps. I remember, every time we cleared the hurdle, our PE teacher would hike the limit. She would, then wait for each of us to reach the target before she again increased the height.
And, as if I graduated in testing and trials. A new test was waiting for me as soon as I thought tough times were over. I also understood why testings and trials go hand in hand.
Learned so many things in the School Of Life. Went through the testings and passes with flying colors.
It is 11:50 pm 31st Dec 2014. And, I Know this is over. Yes. Can’t wait to enter into sanctuary.
See you tomorrow with renewed Faith, Hope and Love!
“I can’t have a Facebook account. I am just 10”, said my son to his peers last week. When insisted, he further told, “my mum won’t allow. I can’t have a face book account” and didn’t budge even they laughed at him. Why wouldn’t he just go ahead and do it. Our home has wi-if and he has access to it all the time. I am not watching him either. So! “Is he afraid of me?”, I thought. What kind of fear is it? He just respected what I told him. Why I told him this ? So that I can discipline him.
Same way, should i and you be afraid of God? This question bothers many of we Christians especially when we know our God is the God of Mercy and Grace, slow to anger. God will not do us any harm. And, many of us take our God for granted thinking He will hear us when we cry. We become slack when it comes to worshiping Him and reading the word of God. And, we remember Him only in the times of trouble, when the oceans rise and thunder storms against us. So should you and I be afraid of God? Answer lies in the following verses.
Fear is not the fear of something evil but fear out of respect the way a child fears his disciplining father. “This fear is fear so that we may not sin”, answers Moses in Exodus 20:18
This fear of not doing wrong sets the discipline in our lives as the world renowned motivational speaker Jim Ron says,” Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment”. And the word of God says, “Fear of Lord is the beginning of knowledge.”
19 Then the angel of God, who had been traveling in front of Israel’s army, withdrew and went behind them. The pillar of cloud also moved from in front and stood behind them,20 coming between the armies of Egypt and Israel. Throughout the night the cloud brought darkness to the one side and light to the other side; so neither went near the other all night long. (NIV Bible)
Tough times just don’t end for you, problems chase you endlessly, and enemies keep making wicked plans for you. You are tired. Can’t see God! And, you say, “God where are you?”
But, you don’t know that right then God is behind you actually. There are times when you feel as if God has withdrawn his presence from you.Just as the angel of God did for Israel when Egyptians were chasing them to the Red Sea and the pillar of cloud stood behind Israelites eclipsing Egyptian army’s view. Perhaps, today God is doing the same for you standing behind you, between you and your enemy, backing you, protecting you and shielding you. So, if you are restless, probably it is a time for you to stay still as God is going to take you much ahead of your situations!
On Saturday, i was looking for some quotes on colors that i could post as social media promo for my page WOOBazaar on the festival of Holi. Bute, having found none suitable enough, i wrote these line for my target segment – women. Hope you like 🙂
But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?” (Exodus 3:11 NKJV)
Many a time we may feel small of ourselves..incapable.. Insufficient when it comes to achieving something significant. But we forget that there is one force that completes us and that is the power of God almighty .
A slave vs the king, Pharaoh? How that can be possible?
But history has it in Bible that God performed miracles through most basic people. It is interesting to know as if its God’s plan to do extraordinary through ordinary!
So, if you are feeling small in front of a big challenge? Then know that if what you are doing is according to the will of God, that is to do good, you can move the mountains for what is impossible for man is possible for God.
“Saar ji (read Sir), must not miss theeze pomegranates. These are straight from Ishpain (read Spain)”, the fruit vendor in fancy Gurgaon suburb said to my husband as he checked the glossy pomegranates. A great body linguistic as shopkeepers are, he said again to my husband now gliding eyes to the apples, “And…theze arre Washington apples”. “Have they stopped producing any apples and pomegranates in India now?” said my hubby with a smirk. I have realized over the years that buying fruits was more than just an experience for my dear hubby and more than a hassle for me, so I have left the job entirely to him. I just stood there silent listening to the interesting conversation. “Nahi saab (no sir), It is naut (not) like that. But, everyone wants to buy International!” “I have bananas too from Philippines. Now things are naut the saim (read same).” Pause. “Acchha Sir ji..Shpain iz in Amricca (read America) only na? ”, he asked innocently. “Yeh hi samajh lo! (You can understand so)“, quipped Alok, my husband. I was having a hearty laugh by now.
Drifted away from the scene my mind was now drawing several pictures and imaginations of the ornamental fruit. “The world has become rather small. Perhaps, one day the fruit vendor will get to the right answer.”, i said to myself. This is new era of globalization. And, that was also when the Punica granatum, historically originated from Iran and landed in Mediterranean regions of Europe in late eighteen century finally making its way to America as Spanish found destiny to their American dream. I don’t know who and how the red seeds, also used as simile for red lips of a girl, came to India. I stumbled upon that comparison to lips while netwandering as I became mother of a lovely girl with pomegranate lips last year you see.
I love not just the color, full of life but the feel as my fingers open my favorite fruit and take out the red juicy arils studded one on the top of the other. I wonder if this beautiful creation of God ever found place in the Garden of Eden! Apple was there! Everyone knows! So, pomegranate must be a close relative of the forbidden fruit for the rich divine look that it has. Also, called as seeded apple widely, in Chinese culture famous as Chinese apple, they have been emblem for prosperity and abundance for some mysterious reasons. I need to dig that out though.
The endeared red beauty, called Anar in Hindi, has found permanent special place in my fruit tray and the kitchen too owing to the sweet tangy taste and of course, tremendous medicinal values in Indian context. Pomegranate juice is considered extremely beneficial for heart and blood related problems. No wonder, pomegranates juice is likened to blood, the life line. And, the rind is considered quite effective in curing diarrhea and indigestion. I had read a very peculiar piece of information quite some time ago that a fruit that resembles whichever shape of the body organ is good for that organ. For example, almonds that are shape of eyes are good for eye sight, walnuts for brain, and raisins for lungs, so on. And, they actually are! Many of them, strangely! Is it some coincidence? I don’t know. But I can’t imagine my pindi chana, an Indian recipe of chick peas curry with ground pomegranate seeds as main ingredient, or Russian salad withoutpomegranates, whether from Spain or from India.
So, I hereby came out my world of rediscovering as my caring husband approached the grand finale of his fruits shopping spree. On the top of the bag, there lay ever proud – the Spanish Pomegranates grinningat me and re positioning in this post as my response to Word Press Weekly Challenge.