ON THE BRINK OF HOPELESSNESS

The year 2016 is about come to an end. And I stand discouraged and frustrated. My life seems to me as if it has no charm left anymore… I am compelled to think “how long God… how long… when will my life come to an end?” I feel like losing my life’s battle as I see this year ends.  I am pushed on the edge by the circumstances I am in right now.  There’s a feeling of hopelessness within me which is disturbing my peace because it’s something contrary to my nature/attitude.

My wife has a fear that if I die at an early age then what will happen to her as she is so attached to me and her hope is her husband. I understand her fear and when I wear the shoes she is wearing I feel her heart’s worry very well. There’s a sense of hopelessness I see in her eyes too.

There’re people who’re waiting for a divorce procedure… What would be their hope? A quick divorce or a peaceful mutual one or a rigorous fight with their ex to literally destroy his/her life? Whatever may be the situation her or his sense of hope is kind of distorted and less understood. She or he is in a condition of hopelessness.

There’s a sick boy whose mother is wishing his well being every day as she sees her child struggling… there’s issues because of the sick child in the family… her heart breaks down with hopelessness.

There are cancer affected members in the families. They suffer every time they go through the painful chemotherapy procedures. They must be hoping against the hope by living on the edge of their lives.

There are family disturbances. Brothers fight amongst each other for property. There are parents who are abandoned by their children. There’s quarrel between in laws in the house which seems to be unending even if this year 2016 is about to finish. 

Last 13 days we talked about our “glimpses of hope” that we see in our life situations. But I felt there’s a pullback feeling in most of us as we were quite not sure of the glimpses of hope that we are seeing. Some of us still have that feeling of hopelessness even when we are hopeful about something good to happen.  

Wish all this hopelessness ends with the end of this year 2016 to relieve all those who feel hopeless today in the New Year eve. The world will be busy merry making, drinking, dancing, having his and her share of fun on this last day of the year…

BUT…

There are lots of questions arise in the minds of people who are going through difficult times…

Where are we heading?

Do we really have any hope?

Who can show us a light in our darkened path?

Who can guide us in to the path of fulfilment and peace?

Who can change the course of our life?

Will we be ever saved out of our pit of death?

When when when?

How how how?

Who who who…?

Who can really take us from the brink of hopelessness to a life with hope, peace and love?

As these questions keep troubling us when I look around in the world the hope that I see in people’s eyes in the midst of despair and agony I try to brush off the thoughts that so easily encompasses regarding me, myself, my family, my struggles and so on…

How do they do that?

Let me end here hoping the New Year will bring something different… some new and assured hope which will fill our hearts with hopefulness, with peace and with so much of love…

Let’s hope that we can jump off the brink of hopelessness well as we enter into a new year tomorrow.

Stay Blessed!!!

WISHING YOU A HAPPY AND BLESSED NEW YEAR 2017

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HOW DOES HOPE WORK?

When I look around I see only brokenness. I look into my life there’s brokenness. I look at others and I find broken hearts everywhere. This vacation of my life really made me very burdened and weighed down. At the end of the year when I sit down and thinking about my own life as well as the lives of others which made me very disturbed.

Why there’s so much brokenness?

I know there’s no answer to that question … But all of us we don’t stop living… We keep doing our part of the responsibilities, fulfilling whatever is required of us, making our supremos happy, satisfying our family members and so on…

But most of the times we drag our lives… like I do sometimes. And that way I really don’t make my authorities happy or satisfy the needs of my family members because I live on a life of pretension. Now pretentious life never allows us to live freely or in liberty. So we can’t termed that living as “live in hope”.

The Greek word for hope is hopemeno which means “to wait, ” “to be patient, ” “to endure” till something happens. And till something happens how should we behave, what should be our reactions, how we should stay? 

The modern idea of hope is “to wish for, to expect, but without certainty of the fulfillment; to desire very much, but with no real assurance of getting your desire.” According to the biblical usage, hope is an indication of certainty. “Hope” in Scripture means “a strong and confident expectation.”

Yes, if we are hopeful we should be happy, energetic, positive, enthusiastic, jovial, cheerful and so on… because our confidence on something or someone for which we are hopeful of something good to happen is of utmost value and on truth. Hope is not always about something good will happen to us only but it might be something good will happen around us… And our suffering will be credited to that good which will happen around us.

Hope I am making it myself clear by what I said above…

I took an interview few days ago which I published couple of days ago on “FACE 2 FACE” column of Candles Online. I interviewed a person who had been successful in whatever he touched or worked on… but he literally lost most beloved people of his life which always keeps him suffering day after day… That might continue till his last evening. But if you see him you won’t sense that something is wrong. He is quite jovial, friendly and very positive. He talks well and gives a very positive vibe on the people around him.  

I have re-blogged it and you can have a read of his life by clicking the link given as under:

Chiradeep: I met Mr. Asit Ghose, a 70 years old man during one of our official meetings and came to know that he will be joining us as our administrator. I was unaware of his age. I was thinking he…

Source: Asit Ghose – A man of sorrow but comforted by his Saviour!

He leads his life in HOPE. He doesn’t expect something good will happen to him in regards to the pain he is enduring but he is hopeful to meet his family again when he dies because human being is eternal and our body stays back but our spirits live forever. There are definitely criterias for making it to heaven but I am not going into that subject. I am just talking about how does hope in somebody works and works good. 

Secondly, as everything happens for a purpose; let me correct it… ‘for an eternal purpose.’ So the death of a person or the suffering of a person has some meaning and effects on the eternity as a whole. It will definitely do some good somewhere, in somebody else’s life, in some era or period of time which we don’t know but the Almighty is aware of it very well.

Thirdly, as the Almighty is aware of every details of our lives or whatever happens to us being the omniscient and sovereign Lord then we should be hopeful by trusting on HIM and HIS intentions and purposes behind everything as we walk on this earth till the end.

Don’t let hope loose its charm…

Be Hopeful always!!!

NEVER EQUATE FAILURE AND DEFEAT ON SAME SCALE

Hi Everyone,

“Don’t give up war just because you lost a battle”.

More often than not we make ourselves believe that failure is the “End”.  End of our trials, end of patience,  end of journey towards the destination.  It might definitely be end, but end of one way of looking at things and not the dead-end with no other way out.  We let our failure dwell so deeply into our heads that we accept it as defeat.

Well it’s time to brush up our perceptions and change the way we look at such “ends” (read failures).  We have plethora of examples of exceptional people who have changed their fates and the way world looks at them with their faith, clinging onto the bleak ray of hope they had and not to mention their perseverance.  My dear friend Rajnandini, have already mentioned many greats in her post that I don’t want to repeat.

I would like to quote examples from our surroundings and day-to-day life:

Babies can teach us few valuable lessons of life.  Watch them when they start walking or try to walk.  They take a support to hold on and stand with faith, that support  won’t  give in and start walking.  They don’t hold any doubts in their minds.  They start walking, they fall only to rise again and again till they walk without  support and without tripping.  They never let their failure (falling) decide their destination.  But as we grow up we think more logically and fear of failure seeps in.  Pessimism slowly takes hold of our decisions which eventually blinds us and distances us from our faith.

Let us talk about an ant.  Such a small creature but never let it’s size decide it’s fate. An ant won’t rest till it pulls the granule of wheat to its colony.   So aren’t we a better creation of God.   Then why we fear circumstances and outcomes?  Why we let the despair engulf us almost instantly?

Have you heard of this saying in Hindi “Doobte ko tinke ka sahara” which translates to – for a person drowning away even a small twig can lend support.

There are instances in my life where I felt worthless and useless, nothing but negativity been my companion.  My inner voice said to me this life is not worth living anymore.  I don’t want to dig into details now.  But during those dark moments what was my hope that rekindled my faith and held me together?  A kiss and cuddle from my kids reminded me that I shall live for them, a healthy and hearty chat with an old friend reminded me that I am still loved and respected for who I am, an interview call (though things didn’t materialise positively) made me realise I still stand a chance, a positive remark from my fellow bloggers instilled confidence in me that life can be still beautiful.

These are all small yet effective actions and incidents.  We all have them around, just need to be watchful☺.

So dear friends never let small failures fail you as a human being.  All those people who stand as icons for success, whose lives you think is a picture of perfection and happiness, trust me there’s a lot of struggle beneath that held this rosy picture up.  Keep trying till you paint your life in colors of your choice (read beautiful).  And most importantly you should know this – you are not sailing alone.  So chuck gloom, embrace hope and faith.

HE, WHO NEVER LOOSES HOPE ALWAYS FINDS HIS WAY OUT …

Once I met a young boy on a train. He was selling breakfast, I was surprised to see how hard he was trying to sell the breakfast. He was left with the last two parcels, when I decided to buy both of them. I asked him if he had breakfast and he responded with a “No”. I gave one of those packets to him, he refused to take it.

Me: “Now that I have paid for the breakfast, you can have it..”

Boy:  “You brought it for yourself, not me”

Me: “Not really, I cannot eat more than one of those, the food may get wasted. You have it”

Boy: “If you cannot eat them, why did you buy two ?”

Me: “I wanted to help you complete your sales, so that you can go back home”

Boy: “And what would I do after I go back ?”

Me: “I don’t know.. What do you do in general ?”

Boy: “I sell breakfast in the morning and snacks in the evening along with tea. So, I am free until evening and in no hurry to get back home.”

Me: “The breakfast is very tasty…”

Boy: “Thanks so much.. You are the very first one who ever appreciated it. I am getting better”

Me: “Did you make this breakfast ? I thought you were only selling it”

Boy: “Who would make ? I lost my parents in an accident. I live alone and make a living with this. I used to go to school before this and I wish I could continue it, but cannot.”

Me: “How do you manage everything alone ? “

Boy: “I miss my parents a lot. They were my strength, I had everything I wanted. Life changed so much after them. I was thrown away from my aunt’s house, because she was feeling that feeding me is waste of money. I had to live. So, I started selling food. Initially I didn’t know how to cook, I joined a hotel for cleaning the tables and learnt making some dishes, after which I could start this on my own. Of course I had only the tea stand to start with. I took a bicycle on rent to sell tea, then I bought my own bicycle, now I rented a place where I live that also serves as kitchen for my business”

Me: “What do you want to become, owner of a big hotel one day ?”

Boy: “Aren’t you restricting my capability of growth to the skill I currently have ? I may become anything I love to do in future. Struggle is a part of life, only hope and hard work can make us move forward, rest everything is just an external factor that may or may not aid me in getting to my goals”

Oh Boy!! What a broad aspect of life and thoughtfulness … That young boy has a view of life that many fully grown up individuals lack. 

That boy knows a little about societal pressures, may be that is why he had less fear while facing situations that were challenging him at times. His hope never dies because he is seeing an opportunity in every problem and tackling it by nurturing his talent. He never gave up. Loosing his parents, being thrown on to the road, not having skill or experience. Imagine a 12 year old fighting his way through life…

Do you see the difference? Often when we know what other factors can contribute or hinder our hopes, we tend to fall prey and loose hope. Without hope there is absolutely nothing in life. This is where we need to find our balance back by holding ourselves. Everything that happens, every situation we handle has to make us more stronger and prepare us for our future struggles.

A lot of times , with many of us it so happens that everything seems to be going against us. Each and every step we take turns out to be creating more and more problems. In the constant quest to make the situation better, we keep trying different ways – all this is nothing but hope and our determination to make things better. 

We don’t need another person to give us hope. Every one of us have a glimpse of hope in ourselves ….  We just need to keep going !!!

ETERNAL HOPE

That night when the world rested in deep slumber,

My mind played tricks within me in numbers.

Day and date I have passed to the oblivion now

But the consequence demanded my immediate bow.

Loneliness, abandonment, hurt, hatred, low esteem had taken deep roots;

Hours of weeping and lamentation were its flourishing fruits!

Darkness had shrouded my vision and shut the doors of hope

Giving me nothing but tears to mope.

The pain within, I could no longer take

Nothing could console my heartache.

I felt like a complete colossal failure in life

Giving another chance appeared a vain strive

I therefore wanted to end it once and for all

But my plans were disrupted with a phone call

An acquaintance offered a listening ear

I spitted my frustrations for her to hear,

Then said she with a voice so calm

“Do yourself no harm!”

“The One who created you knows you by name

He can’t see you go this lame!

He will never leave you all alone

Acknowledge the love that He has always shown

Fearfully and wonderfully have you been made,

To give you life , His  He had laid

You are precious to Him you now must know

Wherever He will lead you, you must go

Give all your burdens unto Him

And enjoy His love, happiness and blessings to the brim!”

Almost two years back, when I was in my first year in college, away from home for first time in life. I was having a tough time without any mental support or a friend to share my struggles with. My grades were going down and I was feeling like a complete failure in life. Feelings of loneliness, rejection, failure and pain had overwhelmed me to the point that I was planning to give up my life. One of my friends called me up and prayed for me over the phone. I felt God talking to me inter personally and saying to ‘caste all my cares and worries upon Him’ It gave me a new strength, a new hope to rise up and face challenges no matter how GIANT they be. I have found my hope in Christ alone. Even today the difficulties that I face, God gives me the courage to move on and face them. I am eternally thankful to God! I hope you find your hope in Him too.

Trust me, HE WILL NEVER FAIL YOU!

WHERE CAN I FIND HOPE!

13th March of 2011 – a day I won’t forget ever. On this day there was no one with me…with whom I could have shared my emotions; there was no shoulder beside me…on whom I would have lean upon and cry; there was no finger…to wipe out my tear drops! It was that day when all negativity converged to break me into pieces. When I looked behind for someone, I found – the guilt of my heart and its offer for me was, “Avinash, It’s all over! There is no Hope for you. You won’t worth to live anymore! It’s better for you to end your life…”

Like every other day on 13.03.2011, around 8:30 in the morning I left home for the official trip but my plan was completely different and was far beyond the imagination of any of my close people. My plan was to commit suicide so that at least I can get rid of the guilt and shame of my heart. It will also bring the solution to the inner problem. That inner problem was “the Hopeless Heart”. It was the early evening hour; I was in the local train. I opened the packet of poison and was about to gulp it in. Suddenly I heard a small sweet voice whispering me, “Son, you trusted human being and they failed you badly. But trust me and commit me your life, I HAVE A PURPOSE for your Life! Trust me I am not like human being.”

And I know this is none other than my Saviour, my Comforter JESUS, who can whisper me like this. Because there was no human apart from me, nobody knew that I was going to commit suicide and my own conscience was insisting me to commit suicide! So it is the voice of God that became the HOPE for me. Immediately I threw that poison packet and said “Okay God! I want to live on this HOPE.”

Isn’t it so obvious! We face hatred, broken relationships, unexpressed emotional strains and loneliness in our life. In such situations all that we NEED is Hope. But the big question is “WHERE CAN WE FIND THAT HOPE?” Is Hope available in a shopping complex? Is it available online? Can I find this in any human being? Can the hope from a human being is trustworthy? What is the source of HOPE?

The source of HOPE is God – the Creator. He is an infinite character and beyond human understanding. The richness of His character is Love which was displayed on the Cross. His infinite power was portrayed in His resurrection from death. In our Hopeless situation, God is always available with Love and Power. Though we have done many wrong things in our life, still He is available for us in our hopeless situation and speaks to us through different means. The only thing left for us is our availability and trust on His power!

Live in hope…

ASSURED HOPE

Hope springs eternal in the human breast;

Man never is, but always to be blessed:

The soul, uneasy and confined from home,

Rests and expatiates in a life to come.

– Alexander PopeAn Essay on Man

His school teacher called him ‘addled’ or ‘mentally ill’. He was deemed unfit for school education in the 1800s as he was dyslexic, though research on dyslexia began only in the 1900s.  Because of constant labeling and lack of help and support from the school front, the boy’s mother met the school authorities and said, “All right, I am hereby taking my son out of your school. I’ll instruct him at home myself.” The little boy, who could hardly believe his ears, looked up at his mother, the wonderful woman who believed in him and promised himself that he would make his mother proud of him. And he did that! Thomas Alva Edison held more than 1000 patents for his inventions which included the incandescent electric light bulb and the phonograph among others. Later in life, Edison said, “My mother was the making of me. She was so true, so sure of me; and I felt I had something to live for, someone I must not disappoint.” His mother’s faith in him gave Edison a hope for the future.

Bethany Hamilton lost her left arm at the age of 13 when she was attacked by a 14-foot tiger shark while surfing off Kauai’s North Shore. Having begun competitive surfing since she was 8 years, she felt her world darken after the attack. In Bethany’s words, “As I grew up with one arm and relearned how to surf, God taught me that He can take the hard times that I went through and turn them into something beautiful. I think that He can do that for each and every one of you. He can take what you have been through and use it for good if you are willing to share what He has done for you.” Hamilton is 26 years old now and enjoys the companionship of a wonderful husband and a son. Her story has been beautifully captured in the movie SOUL SURFER, and continues to inspire others not to give up on themselves…or on God.

Nick Vujicic was born in Melbourne, Australia with phocomelia, a rare disorder characterized by the absence of legs and arms. Throughout his childhood, Nick dealt not only with the typical challenges of school and adolescence, such as bullying and self-esteem issues, he also struggled with depression and loneliness as he questioned why he was different from all the other kids. He couldn’t get the haunting question of “Why was I the one born without arms and legs?” out of his head. He wondered if he would ever find love, marry and hold anyone in his arms. Nick is 34 today and is blessed with a loving wife and two precious sons. In Nick’s words, “Often people ask how I manage to be happy despite having no arms and no legs. The quick answer is that I have a choice. I can be angry about not having limbs, or I can be thankful that I have a purpose….I found the purpose of my existence, and also the purpose of my circumstance. There’s a purpose for why you’re in the fire. If God can use a man without arms and legs to be His hands and feet, then He will certainly use any willing heart.”  

These are some stalwarts whom hope kept alive. Not only did they have a mere existence, but a fulfilling life impacting millions across the globe.

More than 2000 years ago when man remained doomed for eternity, God Almighty stepped down from His Heavenly glory to reach out to man – to reconcile sinner men to a Holy God. With the birth of Jesus Christ – God as man, the threat of condemnation was removed and the gateway of eternal life was held wide open. As a child, I used to think whether life was all about eating, drinking, studying, working, having a family, doing good to others, having faith in God and so on… What after that? Is there anything to look forward to beyond this? Then the following Scripture portion created a hope for eternity with God within me:

“However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” — the things God has prepared for those who love him…”   

I wish to extend the same HOPE to all the readers today. No matter how trying your life has been, there is HOPE. No matter how this year has been till now, there is HOPE. There is HOPE not because of the assurance that things would be perfect in the days to come, but because of the assured strength that God gives to those who love Him in the midst of suffering and trials. 

Here’s wishing you HOPE this Christmas and an assured HOPE for the New Year!!!