Compassion and Hope: Renewed Every Morning

The same year I’d graduated from University I had seizure. To meet my immediate financial needs I’d started joining a private firm.

It was here, at my workplace, I’d suffered this unusual attack, which plagued my living since then. I was seized and my life-boat capsized. However, I just believe it was some jerking in my brain, which would soon vanish.

My preparations and night-long practices for my dream job had been hit hard. In some major competitive exams for jobs, I’d simply slept away. Yet by God’s grace I secured a job in the banking sector, which I quit later.

In between work, I’ve been juggling and roaming through corridors of several hospitals in the hope of leading smoother life but it wasn’t meant to be, may be, for the time being. Until several years ago, I’d started visiting the Intractable Clinics. I’d witnessed the moaning and giggling, in dereliction, of patients encroaching the corridors of hospital.

Everything happens for a reason; reasons unknown or known, that I believe because I’d experience the other side of life too. Some of those very embarrassing moments are better left behind and forgotten. During the course of time, I was not consumed by my captivator, here seizure or epilepsy, it is because God’s compassion failed not.

My family blueprint, which I’d developed through the years, could not be fully put into practice. The blueprint contained determined sources of income, administration, expressing love, tolerating each other, and holistic way of raising children, and the likes.

Through the struggles, life goes on. I went on to live a normal life, although illness persist, and get blessed in different ways. Sometimes, I termed it as an ‘illness that comes too soon’ mostly because I cannot see in God’s view at this time.

There are times, in between, when it is difficult to find meaning in life. Yet I was not consumed by the work of evil inside my mind because the Compassion of Christ gets renewed every morning.

Although I don’t want to admit it; enduring the pain and physical frailties throughout, was not easy. In the meantime, there are obligations and responsibilities, which can’t ever be ignored.

Compassion and hope among men
Compassion in the midst of suffering

His Compassions Fail Not

I do believe that we all have verses in the Holy Bible, which renewed our hope in the face of adversity. When in financial deepwater and health related issues, I was reminded of several verses. One among them is this:

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. (Read lamentations 3:21-25) These verses has always comforted me and given me hope in times of adversities.

The Prophet Jeremiah had lamented during Jerusalem’s captivity. Chapter 3 of the poem mostly dealt with his personal lamentation on the issue of suffering and God. The compassion of God brings hope to those who seek Him.

When in captives the people of Israelites lived a troubled life. Jeremiah the prophet had witnessed the unfathomable misery of God’s people. The recent prosperity of Jerusalem has made their suffering all the more bitter. It is here in these verses a light of hope was shed again.

They are seized, held as captives by their enemies yet they are not consumed. The Lord was compassionate towards them. Again, let me reiterate here again that in their sufferings they are not consumed.

The Lord their God doesn’t allowed them to be fully consumed. Beyond their ability they get protected. In the hope of returning one day, they still lived on. Through His prophet he showed His compassion towards them in their sufferings.

My Renewed Hope Every Morning

After several years of suffering, I’d undergo Brain Surgery two years ago. The aftermath has been filled with pain.

I’d develop migraines, which makes me, very much, sensitive to my surroundings and the pain was sometime unable to bear. Being devoid of enjoyment in life is a huge challenge.

When I was rushed back to the hospital, it was not easy to endure the pain and shadowy images in my eyes. The day seems to be too long when you are suffering.

I waited for the night to come. I wanted to sleep. It is my hope that the morning would bring me something. Every morning my hope gets renewed.

In the midst of my physical frailties, it was good to have that feeling of hope. I still cherished that moment: when I am able to see the morning light. I’d prayed with huge hope of getting home soon.

All my wearies of yesterday are no more. The night has consumed my pain in the dark. A new morning has broken; a new hope has filled my heart.

The love, mercies, grace, and compassion of the Lord were renewed every morning. It was a glad moment to rediscover I am still alive to see a new day. It is all because of the faithfulness of the Lord.

“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I hope in Him!” The Lord is good to those who wait for Him; to the soul who seek Him.”

In the face adversities, be it financial, health, relationships, His compassions fail not. The Lord gave me hope to carry on in this world.

That hope, at some extent, made living with epilepsy easier. Hope becomes one of the most important pillars of my life.

Living in captivity: a life seized, was not easy. Yet I have this hope that deliverance is assured; and surely on the way.

It was more of a reminder to trust and put my faith in Him, so I weary not. It was a learning phase although it’s difficult. The fruit would be sweet, one day, when the time comes.

It is my hope that He would provide, fulfill, and gave us hope in times to come. We will not be consumed in the process because His (God) compassion fails not! They are renewed every morning.

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

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!

 

With my little ones: In the same shade

Reflecting back on what has happened to me when I first take up almost the full job of looking after our two children; my three-year-old son and eight-month-old daughter, then.

I had undergone right Amygdalohippocampectomy on December 14, 2015, and the unexpected huge repercussions that happened early in January 19, 2016 that nearly ended my life, here on earth.  Now the time has arrived for me to spend most of my time with my two children again.

Left my permanent job with the sole purpose of looking after my two children, life has been more of a blessing than sadness.

I had spent, most of my childhood days, missing my parents, as I have the chance to stay with close relatives, for the purpose schooling and helping them or them helping me.  Many tears have been shed by me because I had missed my parents so much.

So, it has been my goal that once I had my own child I will not leave them whether they are with somebody or not as long as possible.  I want them to have me by their side in whatever they need and witness them as many as I could.

In that way our emotional attachment and understanding might reach the necessary level needed by a normal human being.  However, I do not want to be a possessive Dad, throughout my life, either.

They are my (our) hope for a better future.  Even if I didn’t succeed in trying to mold them into a good human being, I will simply say, I ‘d tried my best.  I gave them my whole time, in this short span of life.  Furthermore, it is more important for me that they live their life in the likeness of God.

On the contrary, I have this fear that I might not be able to provide them their financial needs.  Also, there is also this fear that in my old age I might not be able to take care of myself and left alone by myself.  There is no guarantee in life that every good or bad thing is going to happen.

A life, once lived, will not come back, as they say.  I may regret or I may regret not, that is in the hands of the Heavenly Father.  Sometimes, I did missed my office-goer life.  “Fight the good fight”.

Yes, it is important for me state that I am not a single parent.  My wife is working hard to put bread on the table every day.  Work culture in our city was hard.  No reasonable off-days when most needed were common.

Happy Father’s Day!

*Re-published Sept 2016

Hope keeps you afloat: A Loner’s song

At some point in life you have no escape route

You don’t know why you are here and none bothered

You seem to stuck deeper the more you try to move out

Your hard work paid off when it seems you are doing fine

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

At a late stage in your life hit a wall and stumbled upon

Bound by string of responsibilities put upon you

Where you simply cannot succeed anymore to take care

Where you simply cannot think the way-out

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

The scent of happiness seems fainted away

Looked at everything and were unable to see the beauty of it

The beauty of what you observed are still intact

They never knew what is still inside of you

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

You cannot see excitement in almost anything

Your life is becoming dull day-by-day as was your thought

They would assume it was a result of your own deeds

Oh! Where would you go? You’ve lost way

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

It became a big task to search for in this stage,

When your time and resources are limited

The only hope is in Heavenly Father who knew it all

But then you were not good enough for Him as well

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

Living with Epilepsy: A Neurological Condition

Fresh out of college, he was ambitious and happy.   To meet his immediate financial needs, he secured a job in one Multinational Companies.  Now, he was able to buy himself books and practice books for competitive exam in the Public Sector.  Moreover, his joy doubled when his parents agreed with his decision to marry his sweetheart.

Oh! What is that!  While working in his workplace (backend office operations) , first attack of epilepsy came in.  He didn’t know it was epilepsy though.  Nor did he know how severe it was.  However, medicines help him keep the epilepsy under control.  It seems nothing serious is coming to come up soon.

Just after one year, his hard work paid off.  He had a chance to switch his job and he started working in banking sector.   The Bank happened to be the largest PSU bank in the country.  There they lived happily for the moment.  Almost everything seems to fall in place for the time being.

Soon his medication had to be altered many times during which series of hallucinations and side effects of the medicines become a nightmare.  Many times he had to bear the brunt of the illness in his workplace and worst effect was in his preparation for competitive exams (for jobs).  But still, he was happy enough to secure Masters Degree in Political Science over a period of time.

They had been blessed with a son and a daughter after five years of their marriage.  It was a game changing moment for them.  It gave him a new lease of life.  They are the pupil of his life.  But they are living in a place far off from their parents.   It was hard to find help in times of need.  So he left his full-time job to be with his children while his wife worked hard to put meal on the table.  She became the sole bread earner for their family, home away from home.

Nine years since the first attack of epilepsy, the Doctors advice the need for brain surgery to remove the affected portion of the brain.  With no choice available, he willingly underwent right Amygdalohippocampectomy (removing the Amygdala).  The surgery was a success it seems.  He recovered well.  But one more episode of status epilepticus* occurred just one month after the surgery.

After the surgery, he had what they called associated migraine, which becomes a major hindrance in everyday life.  But with the help of medicine it can be controlled at some level though.  Life was a challenge and privilege for him to live.  The illness becomes a major source of his strength in the Lord.  His prayers keep him moving.  The Lord God was good enough to spare his life and grant him a chance to be with Him closely.

At times he was depressed but he was blessed good people by his side to help him recover.  His wife and children are his cheerleaders for the many moody days that come more often.  He wondered, living with epilepsy was a privilege in some way or not.  There he was, waiting for better times to come along the way in life.  Each day he has something to battle by himself, whether mild or severe pain.  Life is hard and that makes it worth living.

Hope, yes hope is all he had.  That too, he almost lost it sometimes.  Many times he prayed to his God to give him the chance to guide his children in the light of the Lord till they become an adult.  Also, to fight for or with them when life’s tempest tossed.

Dear Lord, kindly grant him his prayers but as it is Your will be done on earth.  Give him the courage to live on till he came home to be with you!

*a dangerous condition in which seizures last too long or follow one another without recovery of consciousness between them.