Let us try to be what the Bible promises us to be, may not be the chosen one but the obedient ones!
It is hard to follow what the Bible says and what your heart and brain actually push you to want. There have been desires and wishes that don’t truly let me follow what is meant to be followed and obey what is meant to be obeyed.
Life is just an ordinary way, and the eternal gift is the most extraordinary present. We as Christians have been bestowed with the greatest of promise that is a life after death. For some the life and its circle end with ones death and for us (Christians) the end (death) is the beginning of another journey. A journey that is most extraordinary and exquisite in itself. We have something to look forward to, something beyond the realms of this world, something beyond the very imagination of any human kind. It is the world of promise, the land of peace and the place of purity and light.
As humans we have marked many a days in our Gregorian calendar where we can have a fresh start. May it be New Year’s: when we resolve to be better than what we were the previous year, new month: when we raise our targets, our birthdays: when we wish to be a little more than what we are in our own capacities. And apparently, the beginning of the Lent* season is no exception. We try to discipline ourselves with Prayers, Fasting and Alms giving the 3 pillars on which the Holy life is based. It all starts with the marking of the ash on our foreheads on an Ash Wednesday.
There were times when I used to sulk, crib and let others know that I was observing Lent and that they should just simply exclude me from any plans, parties and feasts that included non-vegetarian food. Though I was praised by my lot for being so disciplined but deep down inside I used to complain everyday about my lack of not being able to enjoy. All this disciplining and other stuff “going to church,” was just not me. I felt as if my youth was being wasted away. Then with the course of years everything started to happen my way; I became flexible with the whole observing Lent season. Just three days were sufficient to observe the rituals as compared to the whole 40 days of cribbing.
And as they say, things and times aren’t the same all the time. With the independence, self earning and no need of God in my life, when after years I entered church, I felt nice, peaceful and contented. I don’t know what took me back to the church but it was always in me. It felt as if I had returned home. A place that was always mine and the feeling was so true. I wanted to rip my clothes and cry out loud and just shout to the Lord, but couldn’t do any of it. But, I did shed a tear or two. Came back home and dusted the dust off my Bible, the one that I bought from my first salary as a gift to myself for being good and that this gift would keep me from the vices.
The story has a message and that is that one can always return to God, the father. All one needs a prayer and a heart to return. He is called Father because He is our Father, He may let us do our will but He can chide us and also love us unconditionally. All one has to do is open their hearts. His love flows and there is no limit to it.
With the beginning of this year’s Lent season, let us strengthen our relationship with God, our Father.
*Lent: The season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday and is derived by counting back 40 days (not including Sundays) from Easter day. Ash Wednesday is so called because of the imposition of ashes on the foreheads of the faithful, which serve as a reminder of the call of repentance and to believe in the good news. The period of Lent is a reminder of the forty days that Jesus spent in the desert before taking up the mission he received from his Father.