God was preparing me to stand for the Lord, and not to trust in the ‘money god’, or Mammon, from the very first year of my job as a lecturer, I was writing all those wonderful stories in the previous 5 parts under the heading now this is the 6th part, of those series. My husband who fears God, rejected promotion as IOW a post in Railways much coveted by the employees, where one can get many choices to get bribe and get rich very quickly. To avoid such temptations and risks to face if not willing to take by the superior cadres, he rejected that post. My dad after his conversion he wanted to set his consciousness clear for all the bribes he took in his career, as Police Inspector, therefore, he sold our fields in our native village in Ravulapalem East Godavari District Andhrapradesh, much fertile ones and gave away that money to pastors in charge, to purchase a land for worship in Vijayanagaram.
Many of us are under the impression that taking bribe is drastically a sin because it shows the greediness of the man, but what about giving bribe, most of us think its inevitable, and it is a way of life, and especially in India, nothing can be done in the offices unless we give bribe, and so many think there is no problem if we give bribe as a ‘gift’ or do something for those bribers, even if it is out of way… to get things to be done.
But beware friends, God sees the heart, John 2:25 No one need to testify to Jesus , Christ knows what is in the heart of man without any external evidence.. ” He did not need any testimony about mankind; for He knew what is in each person..” He knows whether You trust in His mighty power to do things for you, or you believe that your might, your power your trust in money will do things for you. Though it looks as a trivial thing, in everyday life it reflects our faith, our trust, our righteousness. We cannot serve God and mammon. Money mongers are admired , trusted in, and worshipped as if they were gods. No one can serve two masters nor can serve both God and money. Abraham trusted God and it was considered as righteousness. and take any hurdle that trusting God that He would do any thing, may change the minds of the bribers or change the situations all together in wonderful way, whatever He could move the mountains and make a way in the sea. But , in stead if we think that the money in the valet will do that work … God sees even that. Whether we are in group or alone, whether our files are along with others or solely on the table of the briber, can we trust in a God who is all powerful or trust Him alone?
Here comes the test … very stealthily, its not a test like Joseph got, or Daniel and his friends got, but its undercover, We think we have to give bribe because they are doing our work, we conveniently forget that its their job to do our work and Government is paying their salaries for that work… and we think we are obliged to “pay extra money” for the briber is expecting for this extra work, in fact its not extra work, its his work , he has to do, he will give a pose that he is working for us alone and demand a “gift”.. which in other words nothing but bribe. It means we have to sought out some paper currency from our purses to get the work done. Here the question is, ‘are we believing in God or mammon?” Outwardly it looks like a simple common appreciation of the work done, as we are not giving to make things in wrong rout, we are not harming any one, by making them to go out of way to do some evil thing, it is only a recognition of the work done. .. It is just like dowry, in case of dowry the groom’s party expects the bride party to give certain amount to the groom to accept the marriage alliance, or otherwise the groom would not accept that alliance, and go away in search of another party who would meet his demands. So also in case of office work if we do not give money they do not work it properly, they find flaws in our applications, asks for explanations of queries which were not there before; but if we give money they do not bother of any flaws or any queries but grant the files to be passed on. Giving money or gifts to the son in law and to their daughter after the marriage out of love by her parents is different, from asking and demanding gifts or money to accept the marriage alliance is different. so is with the files in the office, appreciating their hard work after everything is finished it different from meeting the demand of money before doing the work. Our office V was dumped with gold rings, percentage of arrears many times by our staff club after (or before?)work was done. So when one sits and think about this keenly in the presence of God , one has to answer to God … whether he believes in God or the money in his wallet. !
So while we purchased the house at the time of registration, I was challenged by the staff that I cannot escape from giving the bribe in the registrar office, But God spoke to me through the verse ” Is the Lord’s power limited?” Numbers 11:25 ….Even at the time of getting Municipal tap water, or electricity to the house, or for the release of my arrears from Government Treasury I had to lean upon God to do the things , only trusting in Him, in Him alone. God wrought miracles and helped us to get things done without giving a single pie as the bribe.
Now after I was retired, in the year 2010, I need to get my pension, I got terrible fever and chikungunya and was suffering.. my papers of pension were in DHE ( Deputy Higher Education ) office and they say, in college unless I pay the bribe the DHE office people never work out the pension and never release it in time. The office clerk Ms V was pestering me to give away Rs. 10000/- as bribe and that she will look after everything thereafter. As the office staff and even the new principal Sr. T C knew that I would not give the bribe. But as a matter of fact they told me that I need to give that amount, or otherwise my papers would be set aside away from the other 3 or 4 lecturers who were retiring that season. As I am going to retire now Ms V and her gang determined to see the end of my arrogance ,in their view, by not giving the bribe they expect from me. I bluntly told them ‘ I will not give even one single pie.. and its your duty to send the service register and the pension papers to DHE office. Hyderabad—-Later those papers would be sent to AG office in Hyderabad..
The clerk V, one day called me on phone and told me that my pension application papers were returned back from DHE office. Not knowing what was all that about I went and met her. She told me,‘ Mam, in your Service register its written that you were given post as Lecturer from 1976 but DHE office says, there were no posts of Lecturer at that time only Jr Lecturer posts were there.” ( So this was last arrow of hatred she had to throw on me by telling me these lies. I know I was given “Lecturer post from the very beginning, my service was not terminated at the end of the academic year for 3 consequent years , which shows that I was on roll as Lecturer from the very beginning and without the break of service. But she was trying a trick on me by having some conspiracy with the clerks in DHE office, as she once tried in RJD office in previous years.
I said , “But as there was no Social work Subject at Intermediate level I was not posted with intermediate Board but with UGC from the very beginning so you cannot say that I was jr Lecturer at the time of my posting.”
She said,'” I do not know mam, there is a GO which says that all who were posted in that year were considered Junior Lecturers for three years, and thereby your service as Lecturer will be cut of for those three years. It means you cannot meet the required years of service, for full pension, and your emoluments after the retirement also will be lessen to half”
I said, “if it is so, give me those GO orders for further enquiry, and I want to apply again with my own explanation, through the Principal. “
I went away from that V’s desk striaght to Principal and requested principal to sign the requisition letter on my behalf, but instead of giving me the copy of G.O ; she called Miss V to the office and asked her in front of me whether there is any other way to solve this problem of mine. For that, that terrible clerk told me right in front of the Principal that she could manage the staff of the DHE office and that she would try to change the year 1976 appointment as Lecturer, and I can escape the retrenchment of three years of service..for counting the pension. I knew these people are dancing to the tune of the bribers there in the DHE office and trying to fool me, what they were talking is absurd, I was shocked to hear Principal T also asking me to give away the bribe. I told her and Miss V, right in their face, like this “ All this look like a crooked thing for me, and how dare are those DHE people to tamper my Service Register and change the dates or appointment? What I deserve I will get, even if it is only half of my pension, or half of the emoluments which I deserve , it would be enough for me,, I will get only what I deserve.. but I will not give one single pie. If you ask me for Rs.20000/- for the poor people, I will consider to give , but as bribe I wont give not even single pie..”
Then the principal told me,’ Miss then you need to take your service register and papers to DHE office all by yourself… will you go?” I said , yes I will go, but as usual Thota Venkateswaroa is going with this work, is it not… send him on behalf of me, I will pay the TA and DA to him. ” with these words I took leave and came home, and knelt down and yielded to His will.
After two hours, I got a phone call from Principal, telling me the papers will be sent to DHE office by courier, and Thota Venkatewarao is busy on some other work. Was she threatening me that my papers would be thrown into the dustbin if not given by hand. But whatever be their intention good or bad, I trusted in the Living God, so immediately I told her, “Sister, that would be the best thing to do, I am praying and everything will be done according to His will”—
Now while I am typing this incident, I am wondering the truth of their words. If at all my papers were with held as they claimed they would had given those to me or to Thota Venkateswar rao. But those were all ready in process, along with other lecturers , they wanted to squeeze that Rs.10000 from me, so they must had played this drama.
I was retired on 31st of August, 2010.. and I was attacked with high fever of 104 degrees F heat, and terrible joint pains, and bed ridden for 3 months, later I started to walk but could not make it properly, almost I was limping, and undergoing physio therapy. In this condition, one day I went out to buy some vegetables but could not reach home, all the way round about, so I took short cut rout, and sat in the church compound behind our house. There is a small gate go to my home, which was locked from inside,I asked one boy to go and open the main gate from other side and gave him the main gate keys to do so. I sat and praying for my pension, and that moment one couple was coming out of the hall and saw me and asked me, the man was loved by my husband, I used to take care of him and his mother, very lovingly by providing food and meeting other needs as they were from a village, he got a good job so they came and met us long back. Now he was married, and told me that day was their wedding anniversary day. His name is Mr M R so, after I congratulated him I answered them the reason of me sitting lonely there, and later he enquired me about my pension whether it was settled, I informed him that all that happened and asked him to pray for the issue. He said, ‘Aunty, once those papers move to AG office from DHE office let me know , the AG general Mr Israel is an honest man, he was my room mate when I was doing my PG in Agl in Bapatla, I have met him only a month ago in a seminar, he gave me his mobile number and told me if there is any work in AG office I can call him.” –—I was fully sick my body , legs, face and even skull was inflamed, and watered, so what I was hearing was like a dream for me.. I thanked them and came home praised God and informed to my children and one other well wisher of our family friend, about God’s good hand on me by keeping God fearing man as General of AG office who was the friend of my spiritual son…who offered to help me in this regard. Thus my pension papers were sent to DHE office, I resolved to pray for this pension to be sanctioned without any bribe to be given. I went to Vizag, where my dad built three storied building, telling us each floor consists of 8 rooms belongs to one to each girl, The ground floor was mine and middle floor is for next girl, and the top floor to the last girl. I went there to renovate the building which was in ruins by 2010.. So I was with my swollen legs was toiling to the core of my life all alone … I was there for three months to complete this task at that time I got information that my pension papers were sent to AG office, now I have to pray for this issue. When I told about this and asked for prayer, my friend,Murali Mohan, reminded me that Mr M promised me to help me once the papers sent to AG office. So immediately I called him and told him the details of the pension. He contacted his friend The General of AG office, and told me, that the papers were signed and he was asking him to send any one immediately to pick the papers by hand, lest if they fall in the hands of the clerk concern, again they would demand bribe. This is something extraordinary on behalf of the boss telling the lay people to pick up the papers from his table. then and there before the file go to the desk of the briber. Mr M told me,” Aunty do u remember one particular girl L whom you lead to the Lord? Her husband Mr B, is now in Hyderabad , he took his daughter to write an exam , and the center of that exam is just opposite to AG office and I told him to pick the papers from General table before the briber clerk comes and claim the papers. So he picked those papers and will bring those to Eluru tomorrow, when you come,home, you can take those from me. “—–
They thought I would yield to their pleas and lies and give away that bribe, when they threatened me that I would not get full pension or full emoluments. Money Devil is not my God, Jesus is my God. Mammon? or God? Mammon never can win the children of God. In the name of religion , people love to gather money and use it for themselves, God sees the users, the result of such evil practices also will be considered worshiping Mammon.
I know that Power belongs to God, His power is not limited… Faith does not come instantly, it has to be exercised daily in every event, it comes only when we listen to His word carefully and by experience we have to taste it… God prepared me from 1976. So my heart was prepared to face any consequences about this bribe right from my beginning of the job… so at the end of this job, this temptation of bribe did not move me an inch.
The story did not stop here, there were still more hurdles, and I had to exercise my faith basing upon that promise I got in case of my husband’s transfer in 1992…Psalms 62:11 One thing God spoken two things I have heard Power belongs to God—- Later I got my full pension and also the full emoluments though they tried to deduct my 3 years of service from 1976 to 1979 . I did not care what all that they tried to do, to oppress me, My Lord , My saviour is with me, and I just run into His fortress of His name and hide there , and the rest He took care.
Once my friend told me, that before she came to know the love of Christ, she used to worship 365 idols, one for each day in the year. After she forsook the idols, one particular Idol goddess came into her dream with all pomp and glory, with jewels and show, and told her, to prostrate to her, and she would make her richest person in the world. so My friend confronted the goddess, asking it, ” Well, I will prostrate to you, BUT my Lord loves me very much, He promised me Heaven once I leave this earth and riches, will you give me heaven after my death?” The idol answered it cannot. Then my friend asked it again, My Lord Jesus Christ died for me on the cross to wipe away all my sins, can you die for me and wipe away my sins?” –With this the idol turned back while she was turning back it look like a skelton of the dead body. All pomp and show was disappeared, its a devil of the burial ground, from the grave. My friend got up from the sleep and praised God for His love, for His death, for His resurrection, and for His sacrifice of His blood to forgive her sins.
Who can take us away from the love of God?