Abiding Grace: Finding the Zeal for Living

It is my prerogative in His abiding grace; to always start my days with, at least one verse from, the Scripture. It renewed my hope, giving me the zeal of living, even in my worst circumstances.

There are times though, when I go by my own conveniences getting absorbed in other things. At times, my minds got usurped by what is happening around us. Too much focusing on the happening around us might distort our zeal of living.

Some of the Synonyms of zeal are: passion, enthusiasm, eagerness, fervor, love, and many more. In brief, zeal can be defined as the energy or enthusiasm in pursuit of a cause.

In my free time, I would glance around the world through printed media. Hate-crimes are rampant in every corner of the world. The flamboyant lifestyles of some people adversely affect thousands of people, either directly or indirectly.

Distortion of facts, even in religious matter, to suit one’s living and in fulfilling their selfish ambitions becomes a threat to humankind. More and more people claimed to follow God by only befitting or letting down their faith.

Spreading false prophecy, distorting anything on the way; by way of playing the so-called diplomacy has been disheartening. Each day we are closer to the end of time. Especially to those who do not have hope of “life after death” or unmoved by the promise of life after death, they are in their prime.

In a world of distorted conscience, if I do not believe in the promised privilege about our eternal glory after death, it would be disturbing to spend each day. What really does the world has to offer? It is for you to think.

It might sound foolish to someone who enjoyed fitting in the systems of the world, as it is. I have been through some of the enjoyment but it’s not worth it. In the end, you wanted more. Either you ended up with guilty feeling or you get stuck.

Our body has been in its declining mode once it reached its peak. However, our mental strength in keeping our faith just started heading towards maturity. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, states, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live” (John 11:25)

The time, for my Savior to take me home, is worth waiting. Getting home, from a journey full of challenges and unfulfilled dreams – that’s the reason behind getting the zeal to live on. For someone who is really in Him, life is not burden but enjoyment.

Should you ask me how do I still have hope and have the zeal to go on? By now, I hope, you get it right.
Faith, without His abiding grace would get lost on the way. Yet even when there seems my faith have been lost, in His grace it gets renewed again and again.

Consider the word of the resurrected Christ in these verses, even before His Crucifixion:
“Because I live, you will live also” (John 14:19). Christ had also taught His disciples, His intention, for all of mankind: “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10)

Abiding Grace: Beyond the Likes of our Heart

“I don’t like you, Dad.  You’re not good to me today.”

“Oh Really? What’s the matter? What do you like?”

“You don’t allow me to play.”

“Yes. Let’s practice your poem for 10-15 minutes, before you play.”

“No, Dad.  I like to play now.”

“Okay.  I will let you do whatever you like, guaranteed.  But let’s practice, first.”

“You’re real bad now, Dad.  I don’t like you.”

He looked around the house, for a while, seeking support probably.  Since there’s no one, he turned back.

“I’m sorry, Dad.  Let’s practice.  But let’s play together when we’re done, please?”

“No, my dear son let us play first.  When you’re happy, we’ll practice.”

“Thank you, Dad.  I love you!”

You already get it, I hope.  By the way, that’s me and my five-year-old son bargaining for a deal.  A father would never want to upset their children.

Let us play with blocks
Scattered playing items for children

When my children did not liked me for few moments I feel pained, it hurts.  I wanted them to like me and enjoy my company as much as I liked them.

In the meantime, I often wanted to say, at least in my mind; I gave up my career to be with you because I love you.  I am also human.  However, I try my best to not tagged myself with this tagline.  A likable dad, I wanted to be.

Many times, we don’t like the company of Jesus Christ in our daily walk of life.  We would have our own reasons.  We are not free, unable to do what we like.  Will our attitude be hurtful?  I think so.  He laid down His life, in the worst manner undeservingly, for us.

We, as a human, have our own liking.  It comes from inside and sometimes out of nowhere.  It might not be wrong to say, we like to play it our own way.  When things don’t go as we liked, we get upset.

For as long as we can play the way we liked, we tend to forget to talk to our Father, our Heavenly Father.  We don’t want to learn lessons, the very much needed lesson, for our future endeavor.  We like to avoid teachings as much as we could.

Once our path seems rocky, when we hit some stones on the road, the journey was not smooth anymore.  Then we began looking around for help.  Still, not willing to submit in His ways, at least for now, we looked around, which is a good sign.

We vent our anger and ire at our Creator; we are not struck dead, right there.  When we can express our displeasures in complete sense not trying to cause harm, it can be a huge step for building relationships.

Like the father-son relationship, we could be with our God, who is our Father.  The shedding of blood, on the cross, has made us His son.  A father seldom do things that will simply hurt their children.

In His abiding grace, He listened to us dearly, waited for us patiently.  But what will not serve us good, we did not get.  We need to get adjusted or change our approached.

Giving in, letting His ways inside us, would be the first thing to do.  It will please our heart in the long-run, beyond the human mind could foresaw.

 

Abiding Grace: The Joy of Getting our Needs

Talking about needs?  Money, food items, clothing, and the likes, came flashing in our mind.

Money displayed
Money; hard cash

“Daddy, since you are no more going to your office, who gives us money for my School Fees?” enquired my son in a very low voice.

This morning, we get up early as usual.  We get him dressed in uniforms, we prayed for him, after breakfast.  There is time for small talk.  Just then, he enquired about it.

The simple yet accurate answer could be, “Your mother is working.  She earned money for our family.”  But today, he was asking more than that.  In our city, school fees are enormous, especially in private institutions.

When we prayed, this morning, we asked God for providing his School Fees and our other needs.  Also that, Our God must help him in his learning process.  That might be the reason why my son was asking me this question.

To our amazement, our son still remembered when the two of us – me and my wife, were working full days.  He talked about it more often.  Although we do not earn in abundant, it was easier to manage our expenditure, during those days.

Now, when I told him, “Our God provided our needs.”  He nodded his head in agreement.

And he responded, “Really? Woooow!”

It was followed by some act of happiness, and it was a good feeling watching him, chirping his way into a very good mood.

In His abiding grace, our God has provided us our needs, indeed.  It was a good reminder for us, as much as for our son.

basic needs
Needs for healthy living

Needs and wants, seems to come from the same category, are different.   What we wanted are diverse and can be gigantic.  There is no limit to it.  However, our real needs could be paltry although the amount kept increasing with the progress of our civilization.

We now lived in a world with too many good options for caring our own future.  It is a good thing to worry for our future endeavor yet caring too much for the future could be tiresome.  It can lead us to worry lots, which will eventually degrade our happiness.

When our small investments or assets are under performing, way below our expectations, it could be tiresome.  For it is written:  “Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?”  Refer to the “Do Not Worry” sermon in Matthew 6: 25-34.

When we were young, we possessed none.  Not even a single bucks, sometimes.  Yet we eat and were filled.  Our parents loved us and our parents loved God; that is how we get our needs.  By now, I hope, we already know about trusting in the Lord.

All our needs are provided beyond our mind could fathomed.  Yet not all we have wanted or desired.  For our own good, does our heavenly Father worked for us, in His abiding grace.

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!

 

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.

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.

 

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