FRIENDS AND BOOKS
It so happened who was transferred to out town became my close friend, though she was 10 or 12 years elder to me. I was 21 years old that time. She was single , educated. I was bewitched by her mias my parents, and sisters were not coming to the church I became very lonely at home.
My conscience made me to ask forgiveness of my parents for many lies I spoke to them and for the rebellious nature I exhibited in those days. I told them I would not grieve them in such a way any more. I also tried to be in contact with my sisters, as I never had been very closer to them, in my childhood I used to have my own place in my home as an eldest one. So I started to teach them about the way of the Lord and pursued them to go with me to listen to the word of God.
Akka became my close friend, my kanthaunty and Kanthamma aunty all these people were much elder tome and I like to be with them. But she is different.She taught me many English songs. The first song she taught me was “ Amazing Grace” later she taught me many more songs. She introduced ‘ Our Daily Bread ‘ to me, and till now for all these 45 years these daily devotions became my spiritual food for me every day. She taught me how to dress up, how to talk and how to fast and pray. She never told me anything by word, I just observed her and alike dhte way she does things. I still remember, first time how she told me about fasting” Leela, today is Saturday, usually I fast and pray, what about you, do you fast?” I said, “ Oh my, I cant fast, if I fast I get pain in the chest”—so she prepared an omlette and gave me two slices of bread to eat.Everything she does was so beautiful . Her vessels in the kitchen were very small, her cooking was simple. She was simple, and neat.
Even her ear studs were so small, I was attracted by her “s simplicity” I said to her” can I call you Akka, you know I do not have any one who is elder to me in my life as akka,? She smiled sweetly and readily agreed to be called so.
She said why do not you stay with me to night? “”
As it is already ( p, you cannot go home in this darkness. I was willing to stay back. Any way dad used to go on camp for every week end, I thought I can learn of Bible from her more. I used to ask her all my doubts and she used to tell me everything in the Bible. She was the first one who taught me how to consecrate Sunday for His worship and prayer. She was so loving and friendly.
That night I spent with her, and the next day we both prayed together and went to church in the evening. My sisters came to the same prayer service and told me that dad was very angry with me for they do not know know what had happened to me.
There were no phones in those days. Then I realized how foolish I had been.
I was in my own world of happiness. I forgt the anxiety I created to minarets. I was so foolish. I was very much afraid also to think of the wrath of my dad once I go home. So I knelt down and asked the pardon of God first, “ lord please help me, I did a very wrong thing. I was so happy to stay with Akka and I forgot what trouble I created at home. Now dad is so angry, what shall I do lord, I am so afraid to go home”
That was my sincere prayer. Prayer was like talking to God, whatever in my heart, I used to tell him as it is, and He used to reply me immediately thru His word.
You know my eyes fell on these verses. Proverbs 15:1 “ A gentle answer turns away the wrath” Oh lord, my heart was still I got His sweet word and when I went home, dad was there in the hall, with angry eyes he shouted at me” where did you go last night?’
Then I did not understand His position much but as a parent now I know what it is to have a daughter like me. Oh
Sorry daddy, I was with akka praying, I will not do like that anymore without telling you any more hereafter. “ Strange, the eerie atmosphere calmed down. He had kept cool. My dad just trusted me, and I kept my word thereafter. This was how God started to intervene in our family matters and brought great discipline amongst us. Otherwise, I know , such simple incident would have brought great uproar in our family and I knew the wrath of my place Inspector dad. We were so scared of him, those days. My childhood affinity with him was all lost during the past few years, somehow he became a stranger to me. I abhorred his presence so much and I did not like his presence to talk to him or spend time with him.. Such was the strangled relationship between us. But Christ brought love into my heart once again. Love for family members, love for neighbors love for relatives and their salvation.
Once akka gave me a pair of small ear studs of gold to wear, when I said to her that they are so cute and beautiful we both went to worship service, that evening to preacher started to preach on the 10th commandment.” YOU SHALL NOT COVET” Exodus 20:17. He was speaking about small things that we desire to have which belong to our neighbors. He was speaking about how careful we should be with our eyes when we look at our neighbor’s belongings.
That struck me so much. Then and there I took away the ear studs I had on me, and soon after the message I gave them back to akka telling her” sorry’ she did not question me why I said sorry. She used to understand me very well.
We both used to go for shopping for marketing etc. The way she bargains when we go for shopping , the way she choose things was so charming for me. Because, my dad had authority in his voice. And when we both go out for shopping it was like riding on the horse for me. People were at our service, to please dad. And I never knew that we could bargaining in pleasant manner until I saw akka, mom never goes for shopping. I saw her purchase anything only at the door step.
So far two years she was with me I enjoyed her friendship so much. I used to share my dreams, my visions my hurts with her, even after the demise of my husband . She just shuns me off and never called me on phone to console me in my bereavement.
May be the Indian tradition of looking down at a widow influence her? I counted on her so much but she just vanished into blue thin air. The respect and love she showed after my marriage, all was stopped at once. She became a stranger to me that is all.
And now when I meet her, she is just one among the crowd. Strange! Life is mysterious. The long cherished relationships have no value at all in long run. Did I hurt her knowingly or unknowingly I did not know.
But one thing I knew, God brings people into my life, when I need them most; and after His missions is accomplished in my life , however I love them or attached to them , He would them just disappear from the screen of my life.
Nobody can understand the heart of a widow unless they go through of it. And God forbid it in their lives. I too was not able to understand the widow before, now God refined my heart and now I knew what life it is. So I do not have any ill feelings for her or people like her who insult me ignore me or hurt me. God brought me to this state and He knows what is happening in my life and He gives me strength to bear all that I go through. She was the one who introduced ISABEL Kuhn’s book By Faith” when she gave it to me , she asked me that the book was not hers so I have to read it and finish it in one day. I finished it in one night, the writer wrote in such a way, I liked her books so much and I read all her books later, In the Arena, Green Leaf in the draught time. Etc. She was the one who introduced many wonderful English biographies in my life. We both used to spend so much of time in prayer and sweet Christian fellowship. She was transferred to the place where I work after my marriage. She rejoiced seeing ho I encouraged my husband to preach and witness.
Just a numb feeling People come and people go. I have to live my life. I have to face my life with God’s help.
Pamela Thomas, and Nirupama in the university classes were great support tome. Nirupuma used to teach me so many Telugu songs. “Parama Jeevamu naaku nivva” was the first Telugu song she taught to me, which became my favourite song in my life. “ Cheekati Kaalamu vachchuchunde, Paravaasine ne Jagamna Orabhuvaand some other hebrone songsgave me great solace. Pameal presented “The Country I love best( The way of Salvation) by Oswald Smith which helped me a lot in my search for salvation Pamela a born Christian turned to Christ and surrendered her life to Christ once again those days.
Nirupama and I used to go a number of churches on Sunday morning. And on Monday evening I used to go to the worshiping place where shanthakka used to attend. I like this place because of shanthakka’s living example.
Once Nirupama and myself went to some prayer meeting where the preacher was explaining the way of salvation on the board. He wrote Faith+Baptisim = Salvation I asked him what about “ Repentance” he does not have an answered for it. W went tone ladies group who claimed that they were possessed by Holy Spirit and talk in tongues. I tried my level best by imitating them One of the ladies proclaimed that I got the Holy Spirit. I said, No, I did not , I am just imitating the way you are speaking tongues. Disappoint we returned back. We went to some Healing meetings, where the preacher , when I asked him to pray for salvation, he pushed me down on the floor and did not allow me to get up and started tossing” There is power in the Blood. Of Jesus. And when I was shocked by the way He pretended that he was joyful and said smile sister nothing happened, I did not know what to do, so I smiled. And then they let me go. I was asking every Christian whether they re reborn, turn back .or about turn experience. They used to answerer indifferent ways which never satisfied me. Once we both went to a professor to get two text books for the exam. I asked him “sir do you have the experience of rebirth? What about the Turn back experience??” He smile and said that he never committed any mistakes in his life , only when he was a child he brought a toy duck from a neibhoursls house but he realized that it was a wrong thing he did ,he returned it back.
At that moment I could not control myself, I started to weep bitterly, both Nirupama and sir were confused and asked me why I was crying? I said,’ you were born as a Christian and you lived good life, but whereas I was not, I come to know of Jesus Christ only now, “I could not complete the sentence, and no body could stop me from crying.
Whole night I wept, asking god to forgive me and give me an assurance of salvation—
In those days the boys in the university started to tease me because the girls with me stopped to talk to them. One day they just followed me from the bus top on my way home. I was walking like I was running, but they were after me speaking vulgar language. I did not heed them but as I turned into he Police compounds as our bungalow was inside, I did not hear their voices. Not knowing that they stopped to follow me, because it was police campus, I just ran into our house and into my room and closed the doors and prayed to God telling him that I was so afraid. I was not a timid girl previously, I never cared about any one before, nor was I afraid of anyone before. But this time I felt that I should not fight with them but I would rather depend on God.
When I opened my bible these verses were in front of me giving me great courage, and these verses gave mea sort of personality thought out my studies in the university. II Timothy 2:3 Endure hardship like a good soldier of Christ Jesus.
“A soldier!! Oh I never saw my father being afraid, as he was a police officer. God was telling me to live like a soldier… never be afraid of anything. This verse helped me during all my field trips. I was the only girl and the rest were the boys in our specialilization Criminology and correctional administration and I never was afraid of anything.
Once a group of boys wanted to insult me and quarreled with me in case of a girl. Because that girl stopped to be friendly with one of the boys of that group and started to attend prayers along with me I came to know of this only the previous day. I prayed much and asked God to put proper words into my mouth when I am confronted by the boys. That particular day God gave me wonderful promise like this” You will be protected by the from the lash of tongue, and need not fear whom destruction comes Job 5:21, 23 for you will have a covenant with the stones of the field and the wild animals will be at peace with you.
The next day the group of the boys was down at the corridor of my class, the president Ravi, the leader of the gang came up to my class and called me out and questioned me why I am stopping that particular friend from being friendly with that particular boy.
I talked to ravi very politely and I do not remember what I talked to him exactly but he was completely pacified and went away and talked to the 30 boys and sent them away.
Later I came to know a bout this. The Lord God was protecting me overlapping me with His presence. Nobody dared to tease me or approach me for I was seeking His presence all the way through.
There was a temptation, somehow our boys and my friends in the class got some questions of the examination and they used to study only those questions for the exam. And therefore they need to get good marks, wherease, I was studying whole syllabus by overcoming the temptation of knowing their questions from my friends, therefore I got less marks than them. But god has exalted me by giving the job in my life. I was the first one in our batch who got job and settled in life.
In those days when I was doing block placement my dad wrote a letter to me requesting me to pray for his promotion. I knelt and prayed and I got a promise for him like this Psalm 756 No one from the East or, the West or from the desert can exalt a man. But it is God who judges, He brings one down, he exalts another.”
Therefore I wrote this promise to my dad and consoled him that he would certainly get his promotion and no body, as he feared, some would stop that promotion. Then my father started to believe in prayer as exactly as in the above promise, my father promotion was give by God even though many outsiders were created by some emotions people.
So also in the care of the Bungalow he wanted to occupy some other officer tried to take it by higher influence and recommendation. Just then my daddy asked them to pray and I prayed and God gave me a verse as promise. And exactly in the same way the chits were taken and the name of my picked up for that bungalow and the dispute was nullified
Thus Gods promise was my guide and His word was the lamp to my feet. @ We love to have friends, we love to talk to them, we search for a soul mate, a friend who can understand us, and reciprocate with us properly, with meaningful words, deeds. We will give support every time even at times we were not so good enough . do you have such friend ” I I no longer call you servant, because servant does not know Master’s will, His wishes; his innermost thought, I call you friend. Every thing I learned from My Father, I have made know to you. Enoch walked with God Gen 5:24; Adam had this friendship Gen 3:8 Moses was called as God’s friend Ex 33: 26 Davlid was known as God’s own heart. they talked to god as one speaks to his friend, David was al ways sought for the mind of God in his life, !Sam 30:8