The Unchanging Amount of Love

“I am sorry. But this doesn’t change the amount of love in the house,” I said to my children while letting them do their homework, ending their free time for a moment.

There are times when I need to reiterate my love for them. I do love them, but when something goes wrong I need to intervene and take action. My interventions cannot, always, be sweet and welcomed by them.

Some restrictions and limitations needs to be followed by me, which in my hope would extract the best out of them while preserving their innate quality. It is my obligation, as a parent, to guide them to the best of my knowledge and belief. (Proverbs 3:12)

We have this notion that the amount of love in the family gets depleted in due course of time. Time doesn’t change the amount of our love. We might not say ‘I love you’ as much before as we did today. However, with each time passing by our love grew. And it’s better to tell each other our love than not.

By not agreeing to every decision of ours, the amount of love doesn’t change at all. They are sacrifices made for combating the unity of the family. Every member of the family contributes in different ways. If we could build a good family it reflected in the society.

As we go on with our lives, there could be several factors which could make us think that the amount of love gets change. We met different kind of people in our daily life who could influence, in good or bad, our way of thinking.

For example, parenting is a vast subject whose practicality depends massively on every father or mother. Our way of raising children might differ with our vision. Children are quick to spot the difference and for them the grass always looks greener on the other side. We’ve been through it so it doesn’t require detailed explanation.

It was not a good feeling being unable to play with my children, inside and outside the house. Leave aside playing, there are times when it is difficult speaking and talking with them due to some unwanted side effects of medicine intake. However, our amount of love doesn’t change at all. It’s just that our activities are limited.

What Amount of Love?

As we grow up, our parents have entrusted us to carry on with the instruction they have given before. Their amount of love doesn’t change, they missed us. Some of us mistook their less intervention as denigrating their love. But it was not.

In the meantime, it would be a good experience if we could show the amount of love we had for our families and people around us. It’s just a wish and not a possibility. There are few things money can show but far greater what’s inside the heart. Love Meter, Love Calculator, and the likes are developed, which are meant for entertainment.

There is an amount of love which never changes; it is the love of God. There might be times when I felt I was less valued, His love never changes. It is my state of mind which occupies my heart at certain times. His love never changes. It is the same forever.

As it happened, there could be times we questioned the amount of love we get. In the face of adversities, sufferings, and failures we tend to poise many questions to our God. It wasn’t easy to go through such situations; our heart is filled with loneliness.

Sometimes, ‘Why God? Where is your love?’ could be our inner cry. We wanted to get the full love and attention of God. We wanted our adversities be lifted; our problems get solved, in His abiding love. Yet many of the afflictions are for straightening our path although it’s hard to see at the moment. (Hebrew 12:7-11)

God’s love never changes; yet we missed many of them when our relationships failed. When our relationship is not good, we saw it as receiving less love.

Bargaining the amount of love we get, actually, depends on the state of our mind. When God’s love never changes we took as an amount which can be change. However, the amount towards our love for God keeps fluctuating, which causes rift inside our heart.

So in its practical sense, following God via our dogmatically inclined practices makes our heart vulnerable to the work of evil. Above all, God’s love is the greatest and the source of all love. Any amount of love stemming out of Him could never be intolerable.

The Greatest Love of All:

When we’re in love, we wanted to change the fate of our beloved in the best way possible. But since we have nothing in our hand, we can end up the other way round.

In John 3:16, the truest sense of love was found. It surpassed any amount of love in this world. The amount of love required for a man to change their life completely. The greatest amount of love was shown, given, and rewarded in giving us an everlasting life.

It reads: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

This is the amount of love we get. It is always up for grab once we believe in the Son of God; Jesus Christ.

A Thankful Heart – 2

“Papa, I have something for you in my bag. We have to give thanks,” he said. He was smiling bright as usual.

“Let me see?”

“Not now, when we get home.”

We climb up the stairs until we reach our floor. Once inside, he opens his school bag and showed me a ‘Certificate of Merit’ which he got from a competition in his school.

“We have to thank God for this,” he said.

“Yes, very well said. I will do the honor.”

“No Papa, I will say it by myself. I know how to.”

So, we closed our eyes to be in one heart. He thanked God, in the name of Jesus Christ, for every minute detail of His help during and before the competition.

As a dad, it was a proud moment to cherish for me for a long time. It was more of my son’s thanksgiving attitude that I would cherish more. It was a good lesson for me too.

A thankful heart is more valuable than gold. It cannot be bought nor can it be stolen.

My five-year-old son prayed for God’s help every night. He even asked Him to stand with him so that he might not fear standing before the audience. I heard him praying every night.

At least, we should thank God when we get what we asked for. Although we missed tons of things in our prayers; I meant we get more than what we deserve. Should we get only those things we asked, we would not have survived this far.

There is always, always something to be thankful for. We can be thankful for the people around us. Without their understanding and their help, life would be really hard. They are the one who makes life worth living.

What about thanking God for all the works He did behind the scene? In other words, for those blessings that can’t be seen, or even felt, we can be thankful.

Whether in our good and bad situation, we should be thankful. Not only thankful, we should give thanks. That’s how the Bible tells us to be. Let’s read here:

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God for Christ Jesus in you.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18, Ephesians 5:20)

Sometimes we should be thankful for the adversities we faced on our way. For they could make us stronger in faith, it could be a renewing phase for our old and harden attitude.

However, it should not be taken as an obligation to be thankful. It should stem out straight from our heart. And that would be more acceptable to our God.

Yet we can ask God to give us a thankful heart. Or we can ask for revitalizing our once thankful heart. For it can get minimized in our busy schedule of life. We can spent some time alone and reflect on the work of God in our life.

It might be intended or unintended but a thankful heart keeps away the work of evil.

So this is about living a daily life. If I didn’t tell you the biggest reason to be thankful, it would be incomplete and misleading.

The most important reason to be thankful would be because of the sacrifice Jesus Christ paid for us on the cross.
With full of grace, mercy, and love, Christ Jesus was crucified. He took the pain for mankind. He was buried yet rose again from the dead. The price for our sin was paid, and gets us connected to the Father again; a place was assured with Him, one day.

Let us give thanks for this act of love for saving mankind!

Let us be thankful for everything!

The Fumigated Room

They have fumigated the place with certain chemicals. I did not enquire about the chemicals they used.

It was nothing unusual. It is a hospital so they are sterilizing the place. At first, my nose easily detects, for me, the unusual smell. In a day or two, I’d get used to it.

Peeking back, we were enjoying game time with our Church’s Children Department in a huge park, two days ago. My kids take part in some of the games too.

In that lush greenery of the park, all the participants were having best days of our life, or at least for that particular year. I’d never expected what is going to happen in the next few days. I had already written how I ended up in the hospital.

What is Fumigation?

Before I proceed further, I will tell you what is fumigation? Fumigation is a process of gaseous sterilization, which is used for killing of micro-organisms and prevention of microbial growth in air, surface of wall or floor.

In its Verb form, fumigate is to disinfect or purify using certain chemicals with fumes. In our life, we needed to be cleansed or get purified. The hospital rooms are fumigated so as to reduce unwanted infection, which would help in steady recovery of the patient.

In the Fumigated Room:

In one of the small hospital rooms, I was there lonely and lost in what to think next. Few years ago, I’d chose to stay at home with my children as much as I could. We’ve been spending good times with my children when this happened.

My children missed me. And I too missed them a lot. My wife must be tired trying to maintain balance atmosphere between home and hospital. It never was the part of life we’ve planned nor did we expect this to happen.

In that fumigated room, I realized human plans are worthless. Looking back at, what I called, my life I acknowledge my transgressions and I desired to be cleanse thoroughly. I desired to be fumigated by the Holy Spirit, and prayers ensued.

This fumigated room was never enjoyable. In my normal physical being I won’t be here. My bed was all I have. My steps, whether I am stepping out or not, were watched very carefully. However, it was a good place to ponder over the words of God.

Once I remember reading Psalms 51. Psalms 51 was a psalm of David when the prophet Nathan came to him after David had committed adultery with Bathsheba. His ultimate desire to be clean again, to renew his steadfast spirit, and not to cast him away can be seen.

In Psalms 51, the writer wrote: Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions and my sin are ever before me. Make me to hear joy and gladness that the bones which you have broken may rejoice. Create in me a clean heart, O God. (Part of verses 2, 3, 8, and 10)

The unacceptable becomes acceptable, and the once unclean becomes clean in the blood of Jesus Christ. In the blood of Christ all things become new creation, for those who believes.

Refining Process:

Now, the rough phases of life and adversities, we faced in life, are the unlikely refiner’s fire in discipleship. There are times when we are unable to desire cleaning in our smooth daily life.

As the refiner puts his gold in the fire to get the best out of it, we too are, sometimes, put in fire to get the best out of us. However, the process might be intimidating and painful. That is because we are a functional human. When we are no more functional, it would be too late.

The refiner’s fire does not burnt indiscriminately. It does not consume nor does it destroy completely. It refines. It purifies. It separate out the impurities and leaves all the good values intact.

Should there be no night, we would not appreciate the day. We must partake of the bitter with sweet. And I know, it was easier said than done. But that is the harsh reality of life.

Dear reader, today I wanted to instigate the desire for going through that fumigated room or refiner’s fire. And to those of you who are still in that fumigated room, may you gain strength to endure the process. It is not sweet but I hope, it will be, later.

In the end, there is hope in the blood of Jesus Christ. It is our complete cleaning for our sinful soul, which reconnect us to our Creator.

Have my heart, O Lord.
Cleanse me from my sin.
Have the core of my heart.
Clean every room inside me,
Purify me, as pure as gold.

Restore me to the joy of your salvation,
I will sing of your righteousness.
My mouth will declare your praise,
Your will be done
In my life

The Passenger Seat

“Hit the brake now, Papa!” exclaimed my son, few times, on our way back home from his school.

He was sitting deep, beside me, in the passenger seat. I was well aware that he was unable to see from my point of view.

Each time he reminded, I’d told him, “Okay son, thank you for your reminder. But take it easy.”

“Did you pray before you turn on the music?” he asked.

“Yes, I did.”

“Well then, I will sleep. When we reached home, please wake me up.” He really did laid back and tried to sleep as he was tired playing in his school.

“That’s trusting!” I said to myself as we drive our way home on that busy road, with lots of potholes in it.

I once heard about a couple driving their new car: The husband, who was driving, lets his wife get off midway, as she was too good an adviser, yet she cannot drive. Too much irritating for the husband, it seems. He arranged to pick her up again as soon as he reached home.

It is all about trusting and having faith as we follow a specified leader. In other words, it is called discipleship. Today I wanted to focus in following our Savior; Jesus Christ.

Who’s in the driver’s seat?

If we are to take a seat in the passenger seat of life, that required some sort of surrendering to the driver. The driver would take us home, in the best way possible for us to reach home, safe and sound.

In our everyday life, we are faced with an option to choose who would be our driver. That choice would reflect on the kind of life we lived and also hugely control our way of life. Free will, we are given this matter.

It might be a good reminder for us that there is a driver in our life. We are only entitled to take the passenger’s seat. The earlier we gave in the earlier we would get comfort in life.

Jesus in the Driver’s Seat:

Let me reiterate here and again that Jesus being in your drivers’ seat do not mean you’d be steered cleared of all iniquities of life. Afflictions are still on the road but He would guide you through that, sometimes, very bumpy ride.

The comfort and internal securities would be always intact when we put our trust in Him. The bumpy rides would make us stronger in faith, love Him more, trust Him more, and closer to Him, as we travelled on life’s journey.

He would hit the brake when He finds it necessary. There are times we hardly knew the reasons. It is because we are unable to see from His point of view. It seems unbearable at times but He knows best!

“For my thoughts are not my thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. (Isaiah 55:8) There are matters, circumstances, happenings, and the likes, which are left to be understood when we meet Him face to face.

The longer the journey and more uncomfortable the more we would talk to Him. The boundless fellowship we would enjoy. He has lots to offer on the way so that we grow in His likeness.

Now, ponder over what Jesus said to his disciples: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” (Matthew 16:24)

A disciple (in the passenger seat) must surrender to His will, take up their hardships or adversities of life, and not preceded Him in serving His purpose.

No human should try to precede or intervene in His purpose less we become an agent of the devil: a stumbling block to Him, and worst, even to our fellow believers.

We must follow Him, not overtake, He is the leader. We must let Him be the leader, a guide in our path.

Let me end herewith this short verse, I wrote, sometime ago:

The Rugged Road

Busy in my own thoughts I am
The road’s lonely, my ride’s bumpy
The rugged road’s hard to tread
Jammed here in this road I chose
Silence befall, no voice I hear
Drive me out of my lonely den

My chains unshackled
In His blood I am freed
Free to follow Him faithfully
Boundless love afloat my way
Owing my loyalty to Him forevermore

**
Lead me on the way
You are good and faithful
You are my strength
Enable me to tread on heights
In fellowship we would stay
My blessed Savior you are!

A Reason to Love

We were observing our story time, one late noon, in our home.  All their home assignments were done.  We lie down while I narrate Biblical stories, repeating each time they’d requested.

“Papa, papa, I love you very much”, said my son holding my right hand tightly.

“I love you too, son.  Any special reasons….?” I replied feeling a bit curious.  At which time, his younger sister was already asleep in my left lap.

“I am happy when you are with us.  We really missed you when you stayed in the hospital.” He continued.  He was referring to a series of my long hospital stay sometime ago.

He also slept peacefully in my arm, after I had assured him that, if God’s willing, that would not happen again in the near future.  It, really, is a great privilege to feel the love of young kids.

Our Many Reasons:

Now, we all wanted to be love.  Also, we wanted to love all people, if ever, that’s a possibility.  However, knowingly or unknowingly, we set some reasons so that we could love a person and vice versa.

There’s no real reason to love.  Love today can vanish in thin air if you got so many reasons to evaluate every now and then.  It is not an obligation but a sincere heart has love deeply rooted in them.

It is easy to love a person with whom we have same interest.  In that scenario, it is unlikely that the other person might not bring harm nor inflicted pain, in any case.

What if I say, I am loved because I have to be loved, would you agree?  Parents have to be loved because they are our parents.  It is through them that we are introduced to this wonderful life.  Believe it or not, they tried their best for our upbringing.  And, they went through severe pain when they are unable to meet our needs.

Some of us love a person till they are able to meet their expectations.  If somebody loves me then they have to adjust or bear with me; that’s the attitude.   So many conditions we have set to love someone.  Yes, I agree that for no reason we can’t love a person.  But that reason should not defy our approach.

Should that be the case, there will be a time where love can become pale or inexistence.   The love of a mother and a father are timeless.  It is, always, abiding in nature.  It is a great privilege to know of such a love.

The more reason you try to gather the less you’d love.  Recalling your sacrifices more often the more you’d gets dejected.  The more you took pride in loving someone the less you would get contented.

Love comes from God

Love comes from God: We love because He first loved us. (1 John 14:19)  This is the greatest source of love.  We are loved so we know how to love, and we loved Him back.  And this love is hugely contagious.

Here please feel with me, in these short verses I wrote:

You First Loved Me

I still remember that feeling
That feeling deep in my heart
How can I forget the eagerness?
I am unable to hold any longer
I wanted to let it known to you.
When I realized, I have been loved.

You gave me Comfort
You gave me Hope
You gave me Love
Because you first loved me
Your son I had become
I love you Jesus
I love you Jesus, my Savior

**
Slain by my sinful soul,
Your sacrifice is overwhelming.
You rose from the dead
Victory over death you proclaimed
My wonderful friend forever be
In you, I will abide.

I am yours now
Have me all, have my being
Because you first loved me
Each step we take, together we will
One at a time, until we got home.

The Lullaby Singer

“Papa, sing me a song. I can’t sleep,” said my children. They are requesting a lullaby that I used to sing.

So, I get near them and sang lullabies, making my voice as soft as I could. Before I know, their body softens and they slept peacefully. It works like magic. And I enjoyed every bit of it.

It is a good time for building strong relationships. A good time to cherish that someone in the world really enjoyed your presence and voicing around them. It is a great privilege, being able to do that, I would say.

Wait, what is a Lullaby? A lullaby is a song to lull young ones to sleep. While its primary objective is to put young ones to sleep, the wordings could be a reflection of the surroundings, happenings, and cultural perspectives.

You don’t need to be a good singer in singing a lullaby. It is rarely accompanied with musical instruments. The tune and words can be easily modified to suit what the Lullaby Singer wanted to express. A certain cultural traditions had their own wording and style of singing though.

Love is the ingredient of singing a good lullaby. It is a good way of shaping young thoughts, assuring our love and security being their parents. With certain modifications or my modifications, this is one example here:

Sleep Baby Sleep, My dear darling Baby
Oh my dear baby I love you, sleep baby sleep.
Your Papa and Mummy loves you, sleep baby sleep
The angels are watching you, sleep peacefully
My dear baby, I will always love you
Sleep baby sleep……..

You can keep on adding words and verses, till your baby slept or till you are done with expressing your love. Sometimes, it can be in the form of a story too.

The Lullaby Singer could easily thrived in any kind of society, be it modern, post-modern, pre-modern society. Even in the age of technology, we are still raising human not robot or some programmed character.

Reminiscence of our childhood, a lullaby could bring back. The love, of my parents and grandparents, easily flashback in my minds. They would put me in a handmade cradle or carry me in their back while singing a lullaby gently.

The soft patting on my backs and their back becoming softer and more comfortable as the lullaby proceeds, are my favorite childhood memories. I believe you have your cherish moments of the same experience.

Recalling those precious days; we lived in a village nearby the hills. When darkness was about to descended, Foxes barking or screaming from the nearby foothills can be heard. The hens panicked and rushed inside their pen. May be inspired by this, here is one lullaby, I could recall:

Sleep, sleep, baby sleep
Before the foxes scream, sleep my baby
If you don’t sleep, vixen might come
Oh hungry vixen! Leave my sweet child alone
My child, my love one, I will not let you take him.
Sleep baby sleep….and so on.

Since the foxes and vixen screaming were common, we felt happy and secure in our parents’ arm. So, we would easily fell asleep in their arms.

From this lullaby we, young ones, can learn that we are valued and would be protected. Our love for our parents also grew stronger.

A lullaby is useful in many ways: It can be a medium of feeding our best love and wisdom in their tender minds. It can be a great moment for building strong relationships. They will remember your very words when they grow up.

A lullaby could be a channel for passing on values. The values we wanted to focus depend on us. We can emphasize on the Love of God, our love for them as a parent, what we expect them to be, our culture and our traditions.

That is why, I say, it is a great privilege to be the Lullaby Singer, to my young ones. It made me felt valued, in a way.

Just as I still remember the lullabies of my parents and grandparents dearly, they would recall my Lullaby. By then, they would know what I really wanted to tell them at that time.

The Unforgiving Heart

At length, I tried to calm her.  All my tactics are squandered.  She was unhappy and not enjoying my presence.

At last, I got upset.  I let her be herself.  She still did not show any sign of happiness.  I waited for the time for everything to come back to normal.  I don’t know what her heart wants.

I have no work.  I did not work anymore.  I could not afford anything for her.  But I want her to be happy being with me, which seems to be too much to ask for.  It is difficult.  I am helpless!

She came to me.  She felt wrong, may be sorry.  I am still upset.  I have an unforgiving heart!  I was envious of her attitude.

Let me tell you that I am talking about my two-year-old daughter and me.  We were having trouble today.  I don’t even know how it started.

She has forgiven me.  She was upset no more.  She was smiling bright at my very face.  I need to be happy too.  But I can’t change suddenly.  Slowly, I became happy, seeing her smiling face.

It seems weird, and it is, to most of you.  I’d wished I can be easily happy like her, on many occasions.  It is a very good thing to learn from my child; an intoxicated heart.  Most of all, her forgiving heart, naturally.

However, I am well past that age, I said to myself.  I don’t know if it’s only me.  I have that Unforgiving Heart.  I wanted to forgive and forget, at the least forget many of my past life.  It is not easy.  It simply came back in the most inappropriate time.

It is one of the devices of Satan.  And Satan did take advantage of it. (2 Cor. 2:11)  That is why we feel the pain.

Innumerable times I’d asked God to help me in the process.  And I still am.  Since, it is an infighting that had taken a toll on me.  Most of time, I feel free from the clutches of these sinful practice.  But once, it came back it is harsh.

Love your enemy, the Bible tells.  They are not my enemy but I cannot love them.  I want this phase to pass soon but it has its purpose, which I did not know yet.

Should I be able to express and spit out as easy as I could, I’d hoped it might help a lot.  Most of life’s occurrences are stored inside me.  But when that store room was cleansed there’s no joy that can be compared with!

When the spirit worked inside me, letting Him fully taking control of me, the heart is at peace.  God has forgiven my sin.  So, should I truly be forgiven I must be able to forgive others.  As I said, it is a spiritual battle that needs to be fought every now and then.

“Father, forgive them.  For they do not know what they do.” Jesus Christ pleaded the Father. (Luke 23:34)  Because of this prayer we lived till date.

In Him, we can forgive.  In Him, we can forget.  It is so sweet to trust in Jesus Christ.

Forgiveness can helps us. (Matthew 6:15)  In order to be forgiven, we should forgive others.

This is one of the lessons I’d learn as a Dad.  Still struggling many times yet will overcome with the might of the Holy Spirit’s indwelling in the heart.

It is a battle to conquer the Unforgiving Heart like mine.  I didn’t know yours.

Let me end herewith this verse from the Holy Bible:  “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matt. 19:26)