The Training

You all know my Shepherd friend. It is his day again. He did not come today, but contacted me. He sent me a message and he is calling me. I have to wait, though, for the right time. Meanwhile, I have only one thing to do. Pray; pray for the time to come. And I am sure my Shepherd will visit me someday and surprise me again. How he loves to surprise others! I sometimes wants to ask him, why! Why you do not come when I need you the most? But when he visits I forget to ask such things, I forget to complain. And when he comes he never ask questions. He never ask why I did not call or where were I etc. He embrace me with the same love and care. We talk. We laugh. And things become so much clear. But the time when I am waiting; it is tough, friends, very tough. And to be honest, it is one of the biggest course in training. What training? Let me tell you this. He told me about this training, one day.
The story starts time immemorial. When we were with Him. We were so cool! Believe me on this! We had a great connection with God and everything was just perfect. One day God made a plan to introduce us with some change and see who becomes righteous again. ( He already knew who amongst us would fail and who would come back to him, but He is God so we cannot ask him any ‘Whys’). Well, when we come down the spiral (you know what I mean) we become impatient, selfish, arrogant and material-lover. This behavior brought with it pain and suffering, and we assuming ourselves ‘smartypants’ we start searching for peace and fun in shopping, expensive gadgets, cars, luxurious houses, and other people. There is no need to share how this ‘remarkable plan’ turned out. Clearly, God has his own plans and his own timings. So, if we think, we will see a pattern here. A pattern of harship and ease, problems and solutions. So you see, it is actually a training program; the training we need to re-gain our connection with God. . It has uncountable courses and it is always customized for each and every individual because we are different and have different lives. That is why, practically, we cannot compile it into a single prospectus/brochure.
Waiting is the part of this training. It teaches us patience. We cry at nights and during the days, we hide our confusions and disappoinrments behinde fake smiles. Some of us don’t bother pretending to be happy, though. But, accept it with a smile or a frown; we all have to wait in our lives at some point. The wait is integral part of the spiritual grooming. It teaches you patience and patience is important. God does not want us to be reckless. He wants us to be rational and calm. It is tough for us, though. One time you gather all your courage and the other time it shattered like glass hit with stones. For this purpose ‘trials’ were made. Trials wash our souls. They are neccesay in this world. This is how it works. If there were no trials, no turmoils, nothing hurtful then what would be the difference in Paradise and this world. During the tough training time when a soul in being washed with the detergent of trials and trumoils, its world spin so fast that nothing looks clear. This is the time when he turns the ‘washing machine’ off as the soul become clear and ultimately everything around. The ease come and we come out of the washing machine clean and shiny. *teeth sparkle*

Village News: How to Thank God?

So, I was here on WordPress and typing my “intellectual posts” and in my mind I had become a widely known writer after typing a few lines. Suddenly, he came. Yes, yes, my shepherd friend.
I had typed this so far.
Have you ever wonder we ask a lot and don’t thank that much? We cannot go a few minutes without God’s blessing (think about oxygen in the air).
He added, “We are designed to depend on Him.”
“You!”, I was astonished. “Where you come from all of a sudden?” My eyes could easily break that lady’s eye popping world record.
“I was passing by and saw you writing.” he replied.
“Okay. Well, now I should ask you how we can thank God. I understand what you said; we are designed to depend on Him.”
“It is simple.”
Yes, for you. How can he be always right? I thought.
He smiled and I could not look into his eyes. He was a mind reader. I had forgot.
“Say ‘Thank you, God’, he continued, ” and feel the thankfulness and his love.”
“I want to do more.” I said
“Well, you cannot pay thanks equal to his favors for you. He is your creator.”
“I know. But I want to thank Him and be one in those who he considered Thankful.” I was serious.
“Okay then I have an advice for you. Thank him whenever you feel that you should be thankful. Just say, ‘Thank you God’ with all your heart. And help others. You don’t know how much He loves you and His other creatures. If you will help His creatures He will be very happy with you. He loves you thousands times more than your mother. And you know how a women feels when someone helps her child.”

Village News: Daily Visit

It had been so long. My shepherd friend did not visit me. Weather was not good here. But today he came. He bought freshly baked cookies. You know how much I love chocolate chip cookies! To tell you the truth, they make me feel like I am having royal breakfast. Well, as my shepherd friend is the greatest chef I have ever met, I loved the cookies he brought today.
“Where were you?” I asked.
“Well, I am coming here daily nowadays. You seem busy in something.”
“Busy? Me? No. I am just doing the routine things. I did not know when you came. Are you coming daily? Really?”
“You were busy. You did not even notice me. I come daily here.”
“I am sorry.”
“Don’t be. We are friends.” he said. “Lets thank God for everything”.
“What? Is it some kind of activity or ritual…” I couldn’t complete the sentence. I saw lights showering all over my farm and the meadows, illuminating everything. I just fell down on my knees and thank God. For what? I cannot enlist everything, every blessing. I thanked God and felt like the thankfulness is the light coming from some unknown resource and filling up in my heart. My heart felt like a glowing bulb emitting light and I fell asleep.
I am typing this now. It is difficult to open eyes and avoid typos. My friend is still here with me. My heart is still glowing. My friend seems someone out of this world. It seems like it is difficult to understand him. He said that he was coming here daily. When? I don’t know. I was waiting for him. He never tell lies. I know he was coming here if he is saying so, but why I did not notice although I was waiting for him? I don’t have the answer yet.

Vices? Why pick on others?

Today I met the old shepherd who comes here often. He has seen many shades of life. I ask a lot of questions and he likes sharing his views; a listener and a speaker; our small conference gets along very well. His white hairs and wrinkles are the only two evidences of his old age. His health seems quite miraculous for the age of 85. He sits under a tree next to my farm fence and writes in his journal, keeping an eye on his herd meanwhile. Sometimes, when we talk, he scribbles something quickly in the journal and start talking again.
Today I asked him about vices that people have. And here is how it went.
“Sam is a big time chocoholic, you know?” I was in the gossip mood and he turned it into a fruitful conversation.
“So, you want me to shed some light on chocolate benefits?” he said smiling.
“No, I was just seeing my blog’s reader today and there was a post about vices”
“Vice; when I think of this word no one else comes to my mind,” he said. His vision was set on something far in the sky. “I asks to myself. Am I vice-free? Am I able to touch the skies of wisdom yet? No. No one is vice free. And I am not an exception. What are some of the biggest evils could be? What do you think? Smoking? Having a sweet tooth? Maybe. But what about the invisible evils that go unnoticed?”
It was a rhetorical question, I knew. He talks in a strange tone sometimes.
He goes on, “Bad habits that kill body should be avoided. I agree. But there are some that are lethal to souls. Having no faith in God. Doesn’t it kill soul? And what do you think about depression and anxiety etc.? There are more than a few people that I know, actually suffers from disbelief and lack of faith. And this weakness of soul translates itself in the language of body as depression and anxiety. I, myself had this problem. Someone took me to a psychiatrist and his medicines made the situation even worse. Ever heard the term ‘side effects’?”, he sighs, takes a sip of water and goes on, ” It was not a very tough time in my life, but somehow I started to believe things that did not existed the first place. I couldn’t walk properly; I had breathing problems; I had illusions; I was convinced that I would lose my wife as I had lost my father; there was a long list of my odd and unrealistic set of believes. And I was miserable.
One day God blessings came to me and I prayed. Do you know when we pray it is actually a blessing of God? It is.
I prayed. I was getting tired of my illness. I asked help and help arrived. I met a bearded old shepherd. And we became friends. One day he told me about faith. I shared with him my fear about losing my wife and he laughed.
“Do you run the world business?” , he asked jokingly.
I was really offended, but he asked again and that time he was serious.
“Do you run the world business?”
“No, I am not God.” I somehow managed to smiled,
“You have the answer of all your problems now. You are not God. It is not your business to take or give life. You belonged to God. Everything belonged to Him. He is the one who grows grass and crops; He is the one who feeds people and animals. He makes it rain. He changes weather. Do you know all this?”
“Yes, I do”
“Then why don’t you believe in God?”
“I believe that there is God who runs the world.”
“Oh you are just saying!”
“I am your friend. Why are you telling lie?”, he was ready to leave.
“I am not lying!”, I protested.
“Then why are you worrying so much?” He smiled and left.
And that was the time when I questioned myself. I had the answer.
So, the biggest vice and the hardest to deal with lies in your own self. You are the only one who can fix it. Seek and you shall find.”